Tricky Blog Spam Ramping Up

By admin

There seems to be something new going on with blog comment spam. It’s been hitting me here at SuperAff as well as creeping into a few other blogs.

Characteristics:

  • It’s not autogen spam, it’s a human being taking the time to comment in a way that’s applicable to the blog post (at least kinda/sorta)
  • They’re sneaking in questions that mention (and sometimes link to) products, services, people. They’re asking for advice (what do you think of xyz; I’d like to try ABC–what do you think; I need a good quality widget and I think 123 is really good, thoughts?).
  • The comments are made by people that have never spent a few weeks/months on your blog making relevant comments that add value in any way, but suddenly *poof* they arise from the mist needing your advice about a product.
  • The discussion on your blog is about Problem A, and again, they arise from the shadows to gush about Product #1 (never heard of before) to solve that problem. Complete with web address (sometimes).

The comment spam is so good at times that it’s hard to be sure someone’s intending to syphon your traffic to their product/service, but when in doubt–do a web search. You’ll almost always find several (dozens/hundreds) helpful commenters across several blogs and forums with the same plea for help or same product suggestions. The language/feel of the comment is a dead ringer.

Bottom Line: It’s your blog. Your traffic that you worked hard to build a relationship with. If a comment sticks out like a sore thumb, nuke it without apology.

I almost want to say: Learn from it and promote your own blogs/products/sites this way, because it’s done really well and flies under the radar for the less experienced. This could be a possibility for a site or product you don’t really care about building a good reputation (or brand) for, but for a web property that matters–it’s not a good idea. No one likes the smell of spam and that smell hangs on for years (and is in full view for eons via the web/search engines/web archives).

The level of increase in this type of spam is having me wonder if there’s a product launch coming up, “How To Use Other Blogs To Promote Your Products Without Being Deleted For Spam”…only $99.97 if you buy now! Or maybe it’s someone’s WOMM campaign service they offer for a fee, who knows.

9 Responses to “Tricky Blog Spam Ramping Up”

  1. Honestly I think all my comments sound like this.

  2. Hey Terry,

    I’ve found the same kind of comments at my own blog. Though for starting bloggers it feels great to get these comments, since it does add a bit to the ego to have a Comments (2) on your blog ;)

    On the other hand, most people I know don’t want to use blogs for discussions – they prefer forums. Hence blog commenting will never be a popualur two-way communication tool. Instead, most of the time I feel quite lonely as a commenter adding my feelings/thoughts or giving the blogger a pat on the back.

    -Dave

  3. Yeah I have noticed this stuff springing up too… At least its not the usual blatent advertisement garbage/spam.

  4. I have to disagree with this post, I found this site by stumbleupon. My police is that as long as the blog comment makes sense, and as long as it’s relevant to the topic, and as long as it’s not too spammy (ie no trying to sell a product literally thorugh the comments) I’m fine with it. If you start moderating your comments too heavily you’ll lose valuable commentary and readers.

    I for one don’t want to comment on a blog where I know that the owner will remove my comment should i mention my own or some other site related to the topic. What’s the point in commenting if you know that your comments will just be removed. For new bloggers at least, I’d recommend allowing such comments because it’ll help build discussion – even if the commentator has no intention of returning to carry on the discussion. But hey’that’s just just me.

  5. There’s an internet marketer that recruits unpaid interns hoping for a ‘marketing education’ to do a lot of this stuff for him. He gives the interns a list of blogs and a list of names/products they’re supposed to work into comments — with or without links.

    My blog is often on the list they have to hit. I don’t mind terribly. Sometimes I even make it easy for them, find out what they’re supposed to promote and post on a related topic.

    One or two of the more frequent posters from this internship program have moved on to their own ventures and have become regular readers/productive commenters on my blog.

  6. Somehow I had your comment stuck in the spam traps Wendy, sorry it took so long to get published.

    I wonder why this internet marketer doesn’t think your blog is worth buying advertising on, just encourges others to spam it? I’m not trying to be hurtful, it’s a legitimate question.

    I get a little pissy with those who feel entitled to “take” from what I worked for and built, rather than finessing some marketing muscle and work out a win-win for all parties. I think the dude’s a crappy mentor. People trying to learn how to be marketers need to learn from someone with *good business sense* who stresses goals like how to secure a strong, respected brand–not how to be a sneaky free (ie. cheap) self promoter that no one will respect.

  7. Hey Terry,

    I was one of the newbies mentioned above that was just glad to get comments on by blog….

    Now I have noticed that people are posting comments with their name followed by a keyword phrase….

    They don’t link to a product in their name and usually have very relevant comments.

    Do you mind these types of comments and how would it benefit them?

  8. I don’t like spam just like anyone else but I don’t seem to feel or get so mad about it. Just delete it. Most commenters, including the ones that seem to be on the side of your post are trying to get backlinks for their site but the least anyone can do is to give a good comment that relates to the topic. When i have the time, I try to find posts that I can link to from my blog and hope that the blogger will link back. Sometimes they do but mostly they don’t. Many times it is a platform issue but a lot of times they are just out for themselves like many of us. People can’t deny they are out for themselves that is just natural, so I can see why a person will get upset when someone else tries to steal what they worked hard for. What gets me confused is, how can they act like they don’t know how they got where they are. We all use the same tools to get what we get, the thing is not to abuse the situation. After this comment I am going to link to it from my blog to make this a win win situation. Is that fare?

  9. Dustin there’s no hard and fast rules about that on my part (using keywords instead of a name). Usually I don’t let them through and delete them. If the comment *really* adds some good info, I may let it stay. I don’t see that too often though (great comments packed with info with keywords in the username). I don’t mind a name or a blog name (say SuperAff)…but keywords?

    Andrew everyone here has links in the appropriate place: in the url field with their name. I’m talking about dropping links in the comments. I feel that really scums up the place so I don’t allow it. Every blogger has their own opinions on whether to allow this or not. I choose not.

    Some home owners don’t mind visitors running through the house with their dirty shoes on. Other home owners ask that the shoes be left at the door. Who’s to argue the home owner’s preference? It is what it is.