I've moved to JenFul.com

Comment moderation is on

I’ve turned on comment moderation because the blog keeps getting hit with spam 2.0. This kind of spam is left by actual people, not computer programs, so the spam filter doesn’t catch most of it. They leave comments that sound real and refer to my posts, but they fill out the link field of the comment form with sites that are obviously spam sites. I’ve been filtering it out by hand for the last few weeks, but it keeps coming, so I’m turning on comment moderation until it subsides.

But, PastaQueen, why don’t you just use a captcha?

I didn’t want to use a captcha because 1) they’re annoying and 2) the spam is being left by humans who would be able to get past it. I suspect these spammers are third world citizens being paid a couple bucks a day to leave spam on blogs, sort of like what happens in that Cory Doctorow story Anda’s Game. Once their comments stop getting published, they’ll eventually go away. (I hope.)

So, if your comment is not published right away, don’t freak out. If you are a real person and not a dirty, rotten, spammer, I’ll approve it within 24 hours.

Update: Eww, I just Googled “blog commenting service” and discovered there are lots of companies offering this spam service, spinning it like it’s not unethical, annoying, and destroying the spirit of the Internet.

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13 Comments

The Merry • December 30, 2009 at 3:49 pm

So this wouldn’t be a good time for me to offer to sell you Senile Enhancement Pills or Free Niagara? Darn.

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Tamara • December 30, 2009 at 3:53 pm

Take it as a compliment. These people think your site is important enough and has a wide enough audience to make advertising their Kitchen B*tches, acai berry supplements and liver-saving detox miracles here worthwhile.

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anna samantha • December 30, 2009 at 5:56 pm

Ha!! That is great! I was writing for a real estate blog for a while and was a part of building another site for my Broker. She knew I read a lot of blogs and would like to start my own one day so she offered to pay me to comment regularly on a targeted group of blogs to draw peope to our site. Obviously I declined. She didn’t understand why I had such a hard time with it. I may not have my own personal blog yet but I can still comment with integrity! (Wouldn’t it have been amusing if I put my RE website in the personal info box? I almost did out of habit! It links directly to my about me page but I stopped doing it after I realized it could be misconstrued!)

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Amy • December 30, 2009 at 7:26 pm

Can you set it up to moderate each person the first time, but then it recognizes them thereafter? Works for me, but then you have 800 zillion more comments than I ever would. I suppose the spammer would have to learn to leave a ‘real’ message first and come back later to sneak in spam…do they have that much patience?

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PastaQueen • December 31, 2009 at 10:09 am

@Amy – I think I have it set up that way, but I won’t really know until people start commenting more than once.

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asithi • December 31, 2009 at 5:43 pm

@PastaQueen – Mine is set up so that once I approve one comments from the same person, then her comments will post up automatically. This does a good job of weeding out the spammers and still allow the regulars to comment as usual.

Once in a while, I would hold a comment for a while because I am not sure if it is a spam. What I notice is that same person will usually comment again (if they are a determine spammer) within the next day, so then I feel no guilt about trashing their comment.

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Rahim • December 31, 2009 at 7:42 pm

I agree with Tamara. As a blogger who’s still kind of “wet behind the ears”, I’m actually looking forward to having a few piggy back spammers.

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MizFit • January 1, 2010 at 6:17 am

ok

I must need a life as I read your post and thought:

HOW COOL WOULD THAT BE TO WRITE A BOOK, FICTION, FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF A DIRRTY ROTTEN SPAMMER?

what on earth goes on his their collective heads?

If I get off my arse in 2010 and write it I shall entirely credit the Queen.

Happy new year!

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PastaQueen • January 1, 2010 at 9:01 am

@MizFit – I’ve always wondered about who buys stuff from spammers, since spammers wouldn’t spam unless they made some money from it. Who are the idiots buying black market Viagra?

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Amy • January 1, 2010 at 12:58 pm

@PastaQueen – Here’s to a multi-comment test!

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PastaQueen • January 1, 2010 at 1:05 pm

@Amy – Ugh, it didn’t work. I just need to switch to WordPress already. *sigh*

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FitFunk • January 2, 2010 at 1:24 pm

I know, right?! I often wonder who clicks through on the spam, let alone makes a purchase? Someone must or they wouldn’t keep spamming, I guess?

Unrelated: looking at your “Lovin” recommendations on the sidebar, at first glance I mistook Adam Lambert for Jillian Michaels and thought, “huh, she is wearing a LOT of makeup in that pic…”

Hope 2010 is treating you well!

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mollyjade • January 2, 2010 at 11:10 pm

A friend of mine showed up for a marketing internship only to find out that his job would be leaving spam comments on various boards. He left at lunch and never returned. So a lot of this is probably unpaid interns desperate for work experience.

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Comments are now closed on all PastaQueen entries. The blog is an archive only so I don't have to deal with spammers. For fresh discussions please visit my new blog JenFul.

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Jennette Fulda tells stories to the Internet about her life as a smartass, writer, weight-loss inspiration, chronic headache sufferer, and overall nice person (who is silently judging you). She does this at JenFul now, but you can still have fun perusing her past here.

Disclaimer: I am not responsible for keyboards ruined by coffee spit-takes or forehead wrinkles caused by deep thought.

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