Comment spam ramps up
They all have a strong whiff of machine generation about them: firstly, they’re poorly targeted. Since when did I have a “blog about best online casino directory”? Or “a great site for lemonade recipe”? They also tend to cluster on my previous posts about spam blogs, probably because the text there is rich in spammy keywords. And secondly, they’re obviously templated: one or two sentences of generic complements; one or two sentences of insert-keyword-here shilling; the same phrases over and over again. (I mean really: “reading your blog gave me goose pimples all over my body”? Please.)
But what really gives the game away is the cases where the hapless spammer misconfigures the software. Sometimes there are bizarre keywords (note here I’ve replaced the spammy link with a harmless underline):
You have an interesting blog. I just put up a site about buy compensation gkjgsdsgs html mesothelioma wbr. I know it’s a strange subject […]No kidding. (How did mesothelioma get to be the only cancer spammers latch onto, anyway?) Occasionally, keywords are missing altogether:
I have a ##affiliate## site/blog. It pretty much covers ##Affiliate Program## related stuff.Oh dear.
One comment let the cat fully out of the bag—and here I’m letting the link stand, but applying a nice safe nofollow to it:
You have a very good site on does adsense work This is something I also have a large interest in and have set up a blog about does adsense work please visit and let me know what you think.Yep: Blog Link Generator, favorite tool of asshat comment spammers everywhere.
As the marketing fluff puts it, Blog Link Generator helps you:
Use keywords to find relevant blogs on blogger.com; automatically post your comments to those blogs, including that all-important link back to your site.For “all-important”, of course, read “all-but-useless”. The come-on touts higher search-engine rankings (“The spiders find you, and you know what happens next. It’s all good!”) but that’s all bogus. Links in Blogger comments are nofollow, which means they’re worthless in terms of search engine rankings; the spiders of all the major search engines simply ignore them.
Not that that’ll stop ’em trying, of course.
A hollow laugh, too, to the claims of Blog Submitter Pro, a similar auto-comment-spam tool:
Believe it or not, the people who run the vast majority of blogs that you post on will actually very much welcome your post.The use of the harmless word “post” to replace “spam comment” is slippery. But that aside; as the person running this blog, I don’t welcome your spam. Not in the least.
The rise of commodity automation tools means that Blogger comment spam is only going to get worse. If you run a blog on Blogger, here’s some advice:
- At the very least, make sure you have a comment notification address set in your Comments settings page, so that you get email notification of new comments and can react to spam as it arrives.
- Consider turning on the word verification option for comments, if you can accept the accessibility problems it causes for anyone who can’t read the verification images.
- Consider closing comments on older posts.