On the Joys of Comment Spammery

The worst part about keeping a blog is the comment spam.

Spam is a fact of life online. Junk e-mail is a bane of existence.

But the worst thing of all is comment spam.

Comment spam works like this. Someone posts a comment in your blog advertising something. It could be a weight loss program. It could be a sexual aid. It could be an online casino. Something.

It’s usually full of links, so that search engine bots, when they trawl the internet, see lots of links pointing to whatever.

It’s usually pretty easy to filter out. I get a bunch of it every day, and I go through and look at it, just to make sure that nothing good got trapped in the filters. That occasionally happens.

I understand, by the way, why people prefer closed systems like LiveJournal; it’s so that they don’t have to deal with the comment spam problem. The registration issue keeps that from being a problem there, while for me, an automated program needs only to hit a file that every WordPress install has.

Lately, I’ve noticed while reviewing my blog’s comment spam a rise in word salad spam.

I love word salad spam. It’s complete nonsense. You get paragraphs of words that shouldn’t, by any rights, go together. Hundreds of words like “about eight best without justify the her session hat were all having and believe just been.” Page after page of it. It’s completely mental. It’s like a message from the Great Beyond, something that exists to fool a Voight-Kampf test. Philip K. Dick would be proud.

When I get word salad spam e-mails, I save them. They’re great for writing prompts.

Here’s a great line from a comment spam received today: “ADF is an international organization devoted to creating a public tradition of Neopagan Druidism.” I do find that mildly intriguing, actually. Of course, then the rest of the message is a hundred lines of UBB code, which doesn’t even work with WordPress; it can’t process that and turn it into links.

One final message from the Great Beyond…

“Zane judged ultimate abyss then clapped were rapt bones here had solved stood naked seldom got gaping its rossbreeds with skeleton through unfair punishment.”

That’s almost poetry, people!

Published by Allyn

A writer, editor, journalist, sometimes coder, occasional historian, and all-around scholar, Allyn Gibson is the writer for Diamond Comic Distributors' monthly PREVIEWS catalog, used by comic book shops and throughout the comics industry, and the editor for its monthly order forms. In his over ten years in the industry, Allyn has interviewed comics creators and pop culture celebrities, covered conventions, analyzed industry revenue trends, and written copy for comics, toys, and other pop culture merchandise. Allyn is also known for his short fiction (including the Star Trek story "Make-Believe,"the Doctor Who short story "The Spindle of Necessity," and the ReDeus story "The Ginger Kid"). Allyn has been blogging regularly with WordPress since 2004.

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