I love bacon, but I hate Spam

Despite the fact that I don’t blog all that often right now, I’m certainly fielding a lot of comments. I mean a LOT of comments. Unfortunately, there’s nothing of substance in the whole lot.

I thought that including a simple CAPTCHA would help cull the spam, but it’s done nothing but speed up recently. Here’s three days from my inbox:

Three days' worth of spam comments in my trash folder

Three days’ worth of spam comments in my trash folder

That was a fairly light three days; it’s been two weeks since I’ve cleared out my pending comments, and there are 140 sitting in there.
Clearly, these are real people posting comments, not just spambots. But they may as well be bots, for all the originality they show. Comments tend to come in a few oft-repeated flavors.

The Praise Comment:
Amazing blog! Is your theme custom made or did you download it from somewhere? A theme like yours with a few simple adjustements would really make my blog stand out. Please let me know where you got your design.

You should take part in a contest for one of the finest websites on the net. I will recommend this site!

I’m impressed, I must say. Seldom do I encounter a blog that’s equally educative and engaging, and let me tell you, you’ve hit the nail on the head. The problem is something that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy I stumbled across this during my hunt for something concerning this. (This comment was left on an American Idol recap post. From 2011.)

The “I Want to Blog Too!” Comment:
Ηοwdy! Τhiѕ іs kіnd of οff topiс but I neеԁ ѕomе help fгom an eѕtаblished blog. Is it haгd tο ѕеt up your оwn blοg?
Ι’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty fast. I’m thinkіng about ѕetting up my own but I’m not sure where to start. Do you have any tips or suggestions? Thank you

Ηi wοulԁ yоu mind letting me know ωhich hostіng company yοu’re utilizing? I’ve loаded your blog in 3 completely ԁifferent web bгοwѕeгѕ and І must say thiѕ blog loads a lot faѕtеr then most. Ϲan you recommend а good hoѕting ρroνidеr at a fаiг price? Thanκ yοu, I appreciate іt!

The Broken Blog Comment:
Hi just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the images aren’t loading properly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different browsers and both show the same results.

Hi there, I believe your site could be having internet browser compatibility issues. Whenever I look at your blog in Safari, it looks fine however when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping issues. I just wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Aside from that, great blog!

The What? Huh? What? Comment:
If your fiсtіtіous сharаctеr is lοω on hеalth ρoints, you can fill again it οr fifty-fіfty turgid grοuрs and mаnу weeks can be needeԁ to pass thгough and thrοugh, depending on instrumentаlist skills.
ωаrcгaft thе warcraftak_200604-30 04:52 PMB ettеr ask youг Online plot, it is the virtually poρulaг Оnline plοt іn the chronicle of On-line play. Why should one be penalіzed thіs mіѕchievouѕly if their ship’s company/lawyer decided to grade 15, with a combining of quests and someone sucking grinding.

The safest temperature for just about any electronic device is a lot less than 75 degrees, consequently itrrrs likely relatively good if you are uncomfortable, your machine can be as well. Apple. i – Pads are now the in-thing and having one is a status symbol. (This was on a post about banana bread.)

The Multiple Choice Comment: (I’m only going to give a partial here — the entire thing was four pages when I pasted it into Word)
{I have|I’ve} been {surfing|browsing} online more than {three|3|2|4} hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. {It’s|It
is} pretty worth enough for me. {In my opinion|Personally|In my view}, if all {webmasters|site owners|website owners|web owners} and bloggers made good content as you did, the {internet|net|web} will be
{much more|a lot more} useful than ever before.|
I {couldn’t|could not} {resist|refrain from} commenting. {Very well|Perfectly|Well|Exceptionally well} written!|
{I will|I’ll} {right away|immediately} {take hold of|grab|clutch|grasp|seize|snatch} your {rss|rss feed} as I {can not|can’t} {in finding|find|to find} your {email|e-mail} subscription {link|hyperlink} or {newsletter|e-newsletter} service. Do {you have|you’ve} any?
{Please|Kindly} {allow|permit|let} me {realize|recognize|understand|recognise|know}
{so that|in order that} I {may just|may|could} subscribe.
Thanks.|
{It is|It’s} {appropriate|perfect|the best} time to make some plans for the future and {it is|it’s}
time to be happy. {I have|I’ve} read this post and if I could I {want to|wish to|desire to} suggest you {few|some} interesting things or {advice|suggestions|tips}. {Perhaps|Maybe} you {could|can} write next articles referring to this article. I {want to|wish to|desire to} read {more|even more} things about it!|
{It is|It’s} {appropriate|perfect|the best} time to make
{a few|some} plans for {the future|the longer term|the long run} and {it is|it’s} time to be happy. {I have|I’ve} {read|learn} this {post|submit|publish|put
up} and if I {may just|may|could} I {want to|wish to|desire to} {suggest|recommend|counsel} you {few|some} {interesting|fascinating|attention-grabbing} {things|issues} or {advice|suggestions|tips}.
{Perhaps|Maybe} you {could|can} write {next|subsequent} articles {relating to|referring to|regarding} this article.
I {want to|wish to|desire to} {read|learn} {more|even more}
{things|issues} {approximately|about} it!|

Really, a lot of the shorter ones could be lifted wholesale out of the larger ones. At least they’re putting some time into making their multiple choices, as opposed to Lazybones McBigComment here.

Is it any wonder that I’m full of the desire to just nuke this blog from orbit? It’s hard to get back into writing anything when I know that any new post will just be assaulted with this crap.

Spammers, be warned — I’ve taken up a new little hobby. One you may not like.

Pew! Pew! Pew!

Pew! Pew! Pew!

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10 Comments

  1. You have OFTEN made me think about blogging… not anymore! LOL – You’re awesome, Missy. I love that you sometimes comment on Scott’s commenters on BI, but I would seriously miss themissy if you were to “nuke it from orbit”. Please don’t!

    Or maybe do – that’ll fix those damspammers!

    BTW, what is the point of the CAPTCHA Code if not to dissuade spammers? Hmm… maybe you need the really complicated ones that think they are spelling “words” but really aren’t. Ew.

    [Reply]

  2. Please don’t run away and lapse into real life! Who will we stalk? 😀

    But seriously (if you notice this comment interleaved in the layers of spam) how about a paypal charge of 1 dollar for the first comment … that should stop the scumbags who I hear are hiring third-world labour to enter CAPTCHA’s for comment spam. After my first comment my email address would then be whitelisted … hopefully…

    We all share the spam pain, and hope they do it to a mob boss with IT skills and anger issues.

    [Reply]

  3. Hi Missy,

    I think you’re being generous. Of the comments you listed, I’m not sure I’d bet that ANY of those are real people. Probably written by someone, yes, but posted by a spambot trolling for someone to contact it and fish for…something. I’m not sure what.

    Those super-generic comments look suspiciously like the twitter spam I see every once in a while. I’m absolutely voratious about cleaning out spam accounts that follow me. There are lots of them that if you look at the first half-dozen comments look like a human. But then as you scan down, you realize that they always speak in generalities and are never specific, and never EVER tweet directly to anyone else, and their links tend to be to the same stuff…

    Awesome that you guys got to go on JCCC this year! I’m bummed that I couldn’t go; it would have been fun to say hi. However, given some of the busy stuff I got into late last year, I wouldn’t have had the vacation days anyway.

    Glad you’re still around–I was beginning to worry.

    It would be fun to hear what you thought of JCCC sometime.

    Sincerely,

    Craig Steffen

    [Reply]

    missy Reply:

    Ah, but how would spambots get past the Captcha? I think it’s people, cutting and pasting comments (with URLs that advertise knockoff bags or erection pills or porn sites) wherever they can. Probably as part of someone’s “SEO” package.

    [Reply]

  4. “Nothing of substance”. I’ve followed your blog for a while, and added the odd comment – glad the cat’s eye was better, that sort of trivia – nothing of any substance, though. I don’t blog myself, but I assumed that bloggers like to know someone is reading and appreciating their stuff. Do you mean us?

    [Reply]

    missy Reply:

    The odd comment from an actual person is a delight to receive! Those definitely have substance.

    In the three-month lull in posting, I had over a thousand comments to this little blog. And 100% of them were spam. It made me feel like if I didn’t feel up to posting, the only use of this thing was so that unscrupulous jerks could create comment links to their Viagara or porn sites.

    [Reply]

  5. I still swing by the site every few weeks to see whats new. I stop at BI every few days and am currently reading the book! (Rading on my Kindle) Excellent work all around from the both of you.

    I once commeted on scotch or maybe it was bourbon?
    Lets use the high level word “Whiskey”.

    My current choice of drink is Larceny Bourbon larcenybourbon{dot}com
    Not that I have dropped Makers, Knob Creek or Basil Hayden from the cabinet. Its more that I have added

    [Reply]

  6. Where I work we are in the same boat. We used to use the AreYouAHuman captcha system on our sites, until they recently started using sponsored games for verification.

    So now we’re testing the removal of the human interaction part of captcha with Anti-spam (http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/anti-spam/).

    Basically it adds a pair of hidden fields that automated spamming software will generally fill out. Doesn’t stop the spammer farms of people though…

    [Reply]

    missy Reply:

    I’m trying out this Anti-Spam plugin, but I’ve turned on the setting where all rejected comments get emailed to you. Just to see if it’s catching anything it shouldn’t.

    [Reply]

    TR Reply:

    In theory, no person should think to enter information or update those fields, but it’s a smart idea to keeps tabs for a while. Hopefully it will work out for you.

    [Reply]

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