Anyone else get a pot full of spam this morning? I went to bed last night with an empty email inbox and a clean, up-to-date Akismet screen. This morning I was greeted with 16 comments being held for moderation and the resulting 16 email notifications in my inbox.
Every one of them was a “compliment” comment like those Lorelle wrote about a few days ago. Here are some examples that were aimed at various older posts on Pied Type, presumably in the hope they wouldn’t be noticed:
Its like you read my thoughts! You seem to know so much about this, like you wrote the e book in it or something.
I seriously get pleasure from your posts. Thanks
Hey, buddy, I’ve not discovered the way to subscribe
I’m not positive the place you’re getting your information, but great topic.
Wonderful website. Plenty of helpful info here. I am sending it to a few buddies ans also sharing in delicious.
I discovered what I had been searching for. good post, many thanks
Presumably Akismet flagged these for moderation (instead of deleting them) because, although they did provide names and email addresses as I’ve required in my Discussion settings, the authors did not have any previously approved comments, also a requirement in my settings. As a final safeguard, I get email notifications of all new comments, primarily to make sure I don’t overlook those on older posts (as these would have been).
Obviously the spammers and their bots are getting better with their English. And gone are the days when they tried to post long lists of links or paragraphs full of keywords instead of coherent sentences. But this stuff is still spam. If it appears on your blog, the authors’ names will link to the spammers’ websites. Those links aren’t directly harmful to you, but they boost the spammer’s (or, more likely, their employer’s) website ratings with internet search engines.
If a reader clicks on one of those links, the website gets a hit and another boost in ratings. With luck, the site won’t be a porn site; it might only be a Russian car dealer or a seller of fake Viagra who hired the spammer. (Spamming for pay is big business and provides income to hundreds of thousands of people around the world.) But do you want to do that to your readers and to your own reputation?
I hope the folks at Akismet can come up with an algorithm to stop this stuff completely so I don’t have to deal with it manually. But in the meantime, having it held for moderation is certainly better than having it appear in my published comments until, hopefully, I see and delete it.
MORE ON PIED TYPE: