Alright, listen up! I am furious right now. Murderously angry. If you are a blogger, this will make sense to you. If you are not, try to follow along, because this is REALLY important.
This morning I woke up to find, not one, not two, but FOURTEEN spam comments on my blog. Fourteen spam comments in five hours. And to top it off: Blogger did not identify any of them as spam. None of them! I was left with fourteen spam comments all over my blog, not just one post. So I made sure to delete every single one of them immediately. Another thing: Blogger always sends me an email when a new comment is posted. Always. But not today; I didn't get a notification email for any of them. Have spammers figured out a new way to go undetected or is Gmail just stupid?
Spammers seem to be evolving and finding new ways to trick Blogger. Seven months ago, when I first started blogging, I got the occasional spam comment, maybe one or two a month. I always deleted them, or Blogger caught them. But in recent months, I've been getting a lot, and Blogger hasn't been catching any of them. I know part of why I've been getting spammed is because I removed the word verification from my blog. The reason I did that is because I hate having to do that every time I post a comment, and I know my readers hate it, too.
But what do I mean by, "Spammers are evolving"? I mean that it's getting harder and harder for Blogger to identify them. Not just Blogger, but the bloggers as well. Here are a few ways to know if a comment is spam:
- Most spam comments are posted by "Anonymous". Note: If it is by Anonymous, but there is no link or advertising, it is NOT spam.
- Even if it does not say "Anonymous", it will not have a real name. Here are a few of my " Named Spammers":
D. How To Stay Sober
- If the name seems a little off, click on it. If it does not take you to a Blogger or Google+ profile, it's spam.
- If it says "Visit my website" or has random words with links in them, it's spam.
- Spammers will NEVER mention your blog by name. They will say "this post" or "this site". It's vague enough to trick you into thinking they are talking about your blog.
- Spam comments are often typed in somewhat broken English. It's still English, but words are missing, or phrases are mixed up.
- A lot of spam comments are about nothing in particular, just random babbling.
- Blogger does not moderate the names, just the comment.
- Also, spammers are tricking Blogger by asking questions in their comments. Even if the question doesn't make any sense, Blogger doesn't know that it's a fake question.
- Spammers often give fake compliments like, "great post" or "I thoroughly enjoy this". Don't fall for it.
- Turn on the word verification feature under Blogger's "posts and comments" settings. It's annoying, but it really is important.
- Delete anything that looks like spam immediately. If spammers see other spam, they swarm like seagulls.
- If you aren't going to turn on word verification, at least moderate your comments.
- Occasionally, spam comments will still slip through the cracks of word verification. That's okay, as long as you delete them.
Now onto a lighter, happier subject: Christmas. Mine was wonderful, thanks for asking, I hope you had a wonderful one as well.