Thursday, November 8, 2012

Trading Spam Tips

Caption: Yes, I see spam a lot.

Image credit Steve Fareham/UK Geo

Among other things, I spend my days monitoring and editing a blog for an amateur theatre. They use Wordpress, which is decent software for blogging. There are things I like about it better than Blogger, the software used by this site, but that's a story for another day. Like most modern computer software, it can be augmented with third-party add-ons, a few of which are designed to catch spam comments. Since we have one of those modules, and since it is designed to flag comments that look like spam for the blog's administrators to read, I get to see a lot of nonsense cleverly designed to look like actual comments.

Today, I saw what has to be the cleverest:

Hi, i read your blog from time to time and i own a similar one and i was just wondering if you get a lot of spam comments? If so how do you prevent it, any plugin or anything you can recommend? I get so much lately it’s driving me insane so any support is very much appreciated.

The "author"'s profile URL leads to a site that looks deceptively like a site about outdoor recreation, but actually contains links that lead to a website where you can buy products of a well-known line of outdoor clothing. Actually, it's more likely that they lead to a line of cheap knock-offs of that clothing line, given the dishonesty of the folks who send this stuff around.

I don't think we'll be trading spam-prevention tips any time soon. I'm a big fan of irony, though, so I'll give them credit for that.

UPDATE: The previous edition of this article used a photo that is now marked "all rights reserved", so I found a different photo.

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