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Tidal Wave

June 21st, 2005

It seems as though I reinforced my spam barriers just in time. Although I wouldn’t notice it because my filters keep all but a few bits of debris out of my sight, I can look at the logs and peek at what’s going on behind the dam I’ve erected. And it’s horrific. The spammers are now unleashing huge floods of spam upon this blog, and probably to the blogging world in general. In just over the past one day, more than 2000 attempted spam comments were shot in my direction. And trackback spam, once just a sometimes thing, has similarly exploded: more than 200 in the last day. Incredible. God help the poor wretch with a blog who doesn’t know how to install a spam filter. Think about it: in one month, you could find your blog choked with 60,000 comment spams and 6000 trackback spams. Good lord.

And now it’s no longer the porn or pharmaceutical industries that are leading the charge–the overwhelming offenders are the gambling sites, both poker and casinos. They’re making the porn and pill people look like jaywalkers.

Anyone out there with an independently-run blog (not Blogspot) with comments activated? How are you holding up?

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  1. YouKnowWho
    June 21st, 2005 at 01:36 | #1

    If you show a jpg picture of a letter A, and then tell folks to type this into a field, and then only take the comments w/ the A, then I think the spammers will not pass the test.

  2. BlogD
    June 21st, 2005 at 03:23 | #2

    The spammers are a lot more sophisticated than that, I’m afraid.

  3. YouKnowWho
    June 21st, 2005 at 06:22 | #3

    I think testing for a specific character in a text field will stop 99.9% of spammers, since they are computer generated that do not look for that.

    Another comment on the site design: The comments have a horiz line between the commenter and the comment. This is a bit confusing w/ multiple comments, where folks may think the line is between different comments

  4. June 21st, 2005 at 09:11 | #4

    I agree with you, I don’t know how I all the other bloggers out there are coping without blacklist or spamlookup!

  5. BlogD
    June 21st, 2005 at 10:04 | #5

    The horizontal line point is a good one, I was thinking the same thing myself, but your comment prompted me to change it. It’s a line produced by CSS, by the way, not a standard “HR” tag in HTML. I lightened the original line between comment and name, and added a strong line between whole comments. Should be less confusing now.

  6. June 21st, 2005 at 10:14 | #6

    I had some comment spam when my Blog was first created, but it has subsized by now. At that time, 8 months ago or something, I would get like 50 comments a day, for a period of about one week. My blog moderates comments with links and a few keywords, so they wouldn’t show up (except for once, when the spammer sent a comment without any links).

    However, I haven’t had any problems with spam recently. Probably because it isn’t a big blog (20-30 daily visits)

  7. BlogD
    June 21st, 2005 at 10:18 | #7

    I guess things get different when you have an archive of 1300 posts and get an average of about 1400 visitors a day….

    Glad you aren’t getting hammered by the spam as much, though!

  8. YouKnowWho
    June 21st, 2005 at 11:19 | #8

    I think the double lines is a bit overwhelming. It seems the difference in font between the post and the poster is adequate enough to differentiate between the two. If one sets css posted2 to 0pix, I think the line will go away.

    border-bottom:0px solid #99A;

    Also, what about placing the posted by thing above the post, with a colon after it, to reduce the amount of extra space in the current layout, as shown below:

    Posted by: BlogD at June 21, 2005 10:18 AM:

    I guess things get different when you have an archive of 1300 posts and get an average of about 1400 visitors a day…. Glad you aren’t getting hammered by the spam as much, though!

  9. BlogD
    June 21st, 2005 at 11:24 | #9

    An easier way to get rid of the line would simply be to delete that line of css code. However, I like it the way it is. Thanks for the advice anyway.

  10. Brad
    June 21st, 2005 at 17:16 | #10

    As always your information on the state of the war with the spammers is very interesting.

    I was going to comment on the line between entry and commenter’s name, and then read your and YouKnowWho’s entries. For me it still looks awkward … I’m seeing only one line, and that’s between entry and the commenter’s name which follows. Since day #1 on your blog I’ve always had to double-check and look three times to work out who sent what … the line, for me, breaks things up and says “here endeth the comment, new comment follows”, so when I see the commenter’s name after the line I believe that to be the identity of the fellow leaving the NEXT comment, not the one that passed. I guess most blogs I frequent must be formated the way I expect, and not how it is here.


  11. BlogD
    June 21st, 2005 at 17:22 | #11

    I’m seeing only one line, and that’s between entry and the commenter’s name which follows.Try hitting the reload button or press F5 if you’re using a Windows PC. You’re probably using your browser’s cache for the styling.

    The prior styling was simply the MT standard, which I hadn’t changed.

  12. June 21st, 2005 at 18:08 | #12

    on my older engine I was being nailed left right and centre with spam but since moving to the new one and activating the spam barriers life has become somewhat better. Although, trawling through the logs shows many attempts at direct posting of comments to the old script.

    Spammers, second up against the wall after lawyers, politicians and the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation Engineers..


  13. YouKnowWho
    June 22nd, 2005 at 00:02 | #13

    Another way to differentiate between commenter and comment is to make the commenter font a little smaller, or a different color. The following are examples of clearly showing difference between posts, and between comment and commenter.





    The like the Debbie Weil look myself.

  14. Anonymous
    June 22nd, 2005 at 00:07 | #14

    These blogs have a nice look on their main page.



    This guy has a neat way of showing commenter:


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