The latest in spam trends a while ago was 'spim' (spam on IM). Now it's 'splogs' (spam blogs). What's more these blogs have some kind of automated bot which goes and adds authentic sounding but totally irrelevant comments to genuine blogs.
Samples of this crappy technique can be found on the comments section of my previous post. Sometime in the wee hours, in the space of 20 minutes, 4 'sploggets' made an appearance. (dunno if the word 'sploggets' exists but it sounds apt to describe spam blog comments!)
The intriguing thing is unlike spam mail there is actually an attempt to 'personalise' and make the spam sound like a comment from a real person. Check these samples:
Hi good blog! I'm gonna bookmark for future reference. I have a pet supply chicago site/blog. It pretty much covers pet supply chicago related stuff. Come and check it out if you get time :-)
Well you obviously have not read my blog or you'd know I live 3000 miles from The Windy City!!!
Bloggs are such a wonderful way to plublish ones thoughts. Thanks for letting me visit and leave a comment. Link to Low carb diet store.
I let you visit? That's news! The spelling mistakes are a nice 'bozo' touch.
My boss doesn't want me to surf on company time, but I had to check out your blog and leave my comment. I think you've done a good job on it. I hope you don't mine if I use some of your ideas on my own blog about engine information marketing niche search.
Flattery gets creative - still doesn't work coz anyone who's blogging has the brains to know a real person didn't write that!
What'd'yu do 'bout it
Kaps at Sambharmafia wrote about the attack of the 'splogs' a week ago and suggested users of blogger go to the comments section and add a 'word verification' option. That's a great idea - I shall do it right away.
The moral of the story is that whenever any medium becomes slightly popular you have unwanted marketing intruding on that space. In the case of the internet it's not only unwanted but random and untargeted since it's 'free'.
Spam - even with a .02 % response rate may have worked with email - since every old idiot uses email. But I don't think it will work on blogs because it's still a more elite and IQ driven universe.
Afterthought: Has Google Adsense worked for any of you? I signed up but never actually inserted the code since I couldn't figure out how it might make me money... I have never clicked on an Adsense banner myself.
This is not a matter of principle or anything. It's just that the ads served on Indian blogs - the ones I read more often - are pretty uninteresting. That could change with time, of course.
As of now, the only way I see the cash pouring in is via 'click cartels'. Like I noticed on a popular blog references to MASAT: Mutual Adsense Amukkum treaty...
I'm no Tamil expert but I'm guessing that means "I'll click on your banner, you click on mine". Scratch scratch.
Perhaps there are bots who do this kind of thing... Program how many "splicks" (spam clicks) you want and watch the $ pouring in. But hark, Big Brother Google has probably figured that out - and is watching!