Spam Blogs (splogs) are bad enough. There is nothing worse than landing on a site only to find that there is no useful information and that the blogs only purpose is to create links to other sites or to generate revenue through Adsense.
For those of us who maintain blogs though, the comment spam is hugely annoying. Spammers crawl the web looking for blogs and then automate posting comments. The sole purpose is to gain links back to their own site. My biggest problem with this sort of link building is that it is not even as effective as it used to be. Google employ a large number of people who are tasked with discounting this sort of spam.
So what are the solutions for a blog owner?
You could turn off your blog commenting, thus preventing anybody from posting any comments. That is all well and good, but the whole point of blogging is to stimulate debate. It is a social medium.
Alternatively you could employ a spam blocking plugin for your site.
I prefer to catch them manually though. The reason is that I can learn from what these spammers are doing. Spammers do it because it works. Some people approve these comments.
Spotting a Spam Comment
- Check the users url. This is often the best indicator. If the site is full of rubbish or content you would not be comfortable linking to, then don’t approve the comment.
- References to sex, gambling or drugs of any description in the body of the comment (often with links) earn instant spam marking on any of my blogs.
- Generic terms like “Great post, I’ll have to bookmark it on Digg”. These posts have no reference to the content of the post itself. “I like your ideas on this topic” rather than “I appreciate your thoughts on blog commenting” is a flag for me. If the post is not specifically referenced then it’s 99.9% likely to be spam.
My favorite blog spam ever was a comment complementing me on the theme of this site and asking me where I got it/ how I made it. This blog has the default WordPress theme, I never bothered changing it, although I will at some stage in the future.
I clearly use the power of blogging for SEO. There is no quicker way of climbing the Google ranks. However, there is a difference between what I do and what the comment spammers do. I try to give good content. Although this site feeds my Webshed site, It is a stand-alone site in it’s own right. That is responsible SEO.