Friday, 19 April 2013

Spam disguised as flattery.

A few minutes ago, I hit publish on a blog post about twitter. A mere three views later, and the first comment appeared. For a moment I was delighted. I hoped to provoke some comment, and to get one straight away is great.

The comment was as follows

"Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Building a twitter following: The right way, the w...":

I'm amazed, I must say. Rarely do I come across a blog that's both equally educative
and amusing, and let me tell you, you've hit the nail on the head. The problem is an issue that not enough men and women are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy I found this in my search for something relating to this.

Here is my web blog; (Link Removed)"

Lovely isn't it? I'm intelligent, educative and amusing. I'm so glad they took the time out to compliment me. Almost effusive isn't it?

Then you google the comment - verbatim.
4.05 million hits. Apparantly this is one enthusiastic blog commentator!

Only it's not, it's a bot #SadFace. I recently changed the spam settings on 90daysnovel to remove the CAPTCHA for posts under 72 hours old. I don't want to babysit the comment/ moderation queue forever, but equally CAPTCHA puts real people off commenting as it takes more time. They're not very disabled friendly either.

Unsurprisingly this means I have to keep a closer eye on things - but spammers are getting better at hiding their messages. It isn't "buy viagra now" anymore. It's getting more subtle.

I'm going to take it as a compliment. There's no point spamming a dead website that noone sees, but there is a great deal to be gained in having a link from a busy blog, and 90daysnovel.com IS a busy blog. For that, thank you. #HappyFace

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