I couldn’t help but borrow from the beloved English institution which is Monty Python for the title of this post; it’s most fitting I think.
I’ve noticed in recent weeks that there seems to be a new breed of spam writers lurking around my blogs. I’m wondering if this is just me and that maybe my defences against spam are taking a hit currently or if this is happening to other bloggers too?
Of course, there’s always been spammers around but usually WordPress notices and automatically slots ’em in the spam folder, or the very few that get through as ‘comments to be moderated’ are instantly obvious as ‘not the real thing’. Either they’re gobbledegook or the email address they’ve come from is, or you immediately see terms like ‘SEO’ leap up at you and you can safely confirm they are spam and hit delete.
But for many days now I’ve noticed spam eluding the WordPress defences and I’m receiving multiple notifications of comments needing moderating. Then, when I look at them the email address comes from a supposedly named person and the comments look, on first glance, to be genuine. This means I have to waste precious moments reading the darned things and then sending them to the black hole of ‘delete’.
They seem to come in certain types:
- The ‘Complimentary-but-says-nothing’ type – it reads well and seems oh so nice but you realise once you get to the end that this could have been said about any post at all. I do worry sometimes, when commenting on other bloggers’ posts that I might write something like this which they think is spam. From time to time I do just write ‘brilliant’, or ‘I agree with you entirely’ because that’s simply all that needs to be said. Most of the time, of course, those bloggers already know me, but sometimes it’s a new blog to me and I suspect my comment just gets rejected. For that reason (in case you’re wondering) I tend to try and write more definite comments which make it obvious I’ve heard you and I’m responding to something I’ve taken the trouble to read rather than just skim over. Perfect example: “Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wanted to say that I’ve truly enjoyed browsing your blog posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again very soon!”
- The ‘This-would-sound-great-if-Google-Translate-would-do its-job-properly’ type – I get at least one comment per day which sounds like the person writing it was not comfortable (or even acquainted) with the English language. The difficulty with this is that my blog has always been one of international concern and I’m proud to have friends from literally all over the world. Some have very good English. Some…er…don’t. So it’s not even as though I can spot bad English and hit the delete button. I certainly don’t want to snub an old friend – or even a brand new one who’s genuine. The great thing about English is that it is completely flexible in all things. Grammar, spelling, pronunciation, foreign words – even invented words! – all can be accommodated with English. So I can cope with tortured language but it really is a bore to struggle through a comment working out what the writer was trying to say only to discover they were saying nothing at all. Perfect example: “it is possible to along with choose you may version of the item answerability.”
- The ‘I-haven’t-a-clue-what-this-post-is-about’ type – this used to be easy to deal with but the latest strain leaves it to the end to reveal that a robot has been behind the comment I’ve just wasted time getting excited about. What’s annoying about these is that they begin so nicely and make you think you might just be starting the day with an up. Perfect example: “You understand what, You are an excellent guy.” (aww thank you 🙂 ) “It isn’t going to matter what the remainder of the planet thinks of you.” (my goodness, you’re so right – I’m really glad you’ve written to encourage me onwards) “Just realize that I take pleasure in you, and that’s all that issues.” (oh shucks now you’re just embarrassing me!) “Mulberry Effie Hobo Spongy Pebbled Shoulder Bag Apricot” (… -_-…crap…)
- The ‘Went-bonkers-right-at-the-end’ type – this kind, at least, gives me a little amusement. They are normally short, sweet and then wonderfully off the planet which makes you think the spammer’s computer committed suicide mid-spam writing. Wonderfully, these kind of comments would have made it through even my checking had the spambot not spewed its brains out with letters. Surely spammers want their comments to get through? Perfect example: “Im thankful for the post. Great. kcfcfckdgkbdkgbd”. Seriously, this is pure genius.
All the above are genuine examples from my spam folder. I would be very interested to know if anyone else is getting the same kind of thing or has this new generation of spambots only set their sites (see what I did there? 🙂 ) on my little ole corner of the web? Feel free to let me know below. Are you getting the same thing on your site or am I waging this war alone? Until next time, have a great day, week or life and don’t forget – the most important thing to remember in life is kcfcfckdgkbdkgbd….