Spam 3.0: Are you using Digg to game me?

Just moments ago, I received a comment on my previous post. Wanting to upkeep my “SOB-ness” and hoping to make another friend from this blog, I hurried to see what the comment was about.

I was elated because it was from someone whom I’ve never seen commenting on my blog before. I thought my article was so good. I had a little suspicion, however, because the comment really didn’t add much value to the post – it was simply quoting two lines from my post text, and saying that that line was the secret.

So I checked out the commenter’s URL (which was a blogspot blog) and it was half-legit. It wasn’t really a totally rubbish site, but it was ill-designed and splattered with Adsense all over.

Never mind. I thought to myself. Maybe he’s new, or something like that. I thought I would allow the comment.

To my surprise, another comment came in 10 minutes later. It was from another new commenter, and she said that she had Dugg my post, and she even gave me the URL of the entry posted in Digg. But again, there was practically no value in the comment at all.

My Spam Comments

2 comments in 10 minutes? That’s not right! My blog doesn’t have that kind of popularity!

So I investigated further, I went to check my email notifications.

Dang! Bugger.

Using Digg to game me

Both had the same IP address. Their URLs were different (the second was a Squidoo lens) but the contents are very similar, both talking something about some contemporary Indian art gallery.

Delete.

If you were really legit commenters, I thank you for taking the effort to Digg my article. Please add more value in your comments next time. I look forward to you coming back “for future analysis and tips”.

I know that two computers can share the same public IP address if they are on the same internal network, but then again, 2 comments coming from the same IP address claiming to come from different people in 10 minutes? Not me. My blog is not so popular yet.

I can imagine what it is like. It is either ONE person trying to be Superman and Clark Kent, or there are two (or many more) people in one room, both paid to leave such useless comments.

I remember Lorelle had articles about the new comment spammers and human versus human in spamming. Particularly, in the earlier post, she mentioned the “new version” of spam (then) sounding better, and she even recommended that one way of avoiding the spam police is to use the blog author’s name in the comment, and posting comments that at least relate to the article.

That’s version 2.0.

Now spam has upgraded to version 3.0. These spammers use the blog authors names, quote part of the post text, and even pull the poor innocent Digg into the game.

I’m not playing.

Comments

  1. The use of post content and personalization has been going on for over a year. It sucks, and it makes it harder to stop if you aren’t paying attention.

    Thank goodness, you are! Luckily, with Akismet, the social networking comment spam fighting tool, by marking it as comment spam, you are helping others who might get caught by the same spammers. Still, more has to be done to separate the human commenters from the human spammers.

  2. Thanks Lorelle for your thoughts on this. Actually, I might even have let it pass if they didn’t post a second comment! Too bad, they were too greedy. :mrgreen:

  3. Hi Kian Ann,

    You know what the first time that I was setting up my blog, I got spam with 20000 comments, I was unable to load my comment page in wordpress even. I was furious at that time. Why do people do this kind of things. It will only ruin their name.

    Thank to Akismet, It really kill the spam. Or Kian Ann maybe you can install the comment spam plugin for your comment as it will add as another protection. The link is for plugin is below. I will install my soon!

    >>>http://www.theblog.ca/?p=21

    John Tan

  4. Thanks John. Wow… that 20,000 comments thing must have been a real headache for you!

    I think Akismet does well – I think the movement to reduce spam should be targeted at helping spammers realise what they are doing, not installing spam filters.

  5. Wow, 20,000 comments, haha perhaps u got so excited at 1st, then became big dissapointment 🙂 (since they are spams) . So far, I haven’t got a chance for that 😀

  6. If those 20,000 comments were legit, you don’t have to blog anymore, because they will be your blog content! 😛 Anyway, yeah, I guess it happens – maybe John was so lucky to be picked to be the “testbed” for spam syndicate? :mrgreen:

  7. Sometime I get 2-3 spam comments a day, mostly from those selling pills. It just comes right after I’ve submitted few posts, I will then mark them as “spam” in wordpress, so far still manageable to me 🙂

  8. Hi Kian Ann

    Today to my surprise when I logged into my dashboard of my TechChee.com ,to my surprise, I got 9 comments, well only 1 is genuine, and 2 seem to be content theft, from 64arts.net and the rest are spams 😀 haha I’m getting more spams now, but at least I can just mark as “spam”, haha still considered manageable.

    Any idea of this 64arts.net ? Anyway, I just approved them as it gives me back link to my site. This site is using WordPress MU, which is a package that can pull content from many wordpress site ?

    I haven’t got time yet to explore this wordpress MU, any idea about it ? 😀

  9. Hey ky,

    WordPress MU is the multi-user, multi-weblog version of WordPress, so with one installation, you will be able to create multiple weblogs, either on different subdomains, or different subdirectories.

    I haven’t heard of 64arts.net.. but from what I see, it looks really spammy, with just excerpts of posts and then a backlink.

    I would recommend you take away the comment – we should give links to legitimate sites, not spammy sites like that. While it may be no harm now doing this – who knows what they are up to in the future? Remember that when you give them a link you are in a sense “promoting” them.

    With what is going on in their site, I think you are better off without linking to them. Especially when our blogs are still young. 🙂

  10. Yup u’re rite, I’m getting them off now, actually I get quite a number of this besides this 64arts.net, which the 64arts.net is the most frequent 🙂 Thx