Blog spam, in the form of manual or automatic comments, trackbacks or pingbacks, has always been a problem for bloggers. It is just to lucrative to run a software that spams links all around in the hope that some will stick and benefit the site that they link to.
List of blogs that do not verify comments are traded on Internet marketing forums, services and websites. Webmasters fight a constant battle against spam. When I started Ghacks six years ago it was a small site, and I was able to verify all comments, trackbacks and pingbacks manually.
But a lot has changed since then. More and more tools that automate the commenting have been created, to the point that everyone can use them without problems. All that is needed is a big list of blogs that accept comments and that's it.
Advanced spammers use proxy lists, virtual private networks, unique comments with variables (for instance the author's name included or variations of phrases and words) and more to improve the chance that comments are accepted on spammed sites.
Ghacks today receives more than 900 spam comments per day. That still may not sound as much considering that other blogs may very well receive tens of thousands of comments per day. I moved from manually checking every comment to only checking comments sporadically, mainly because of time constraints.
Ghacks has received its 1 Millionth spam comment in this month, another blog milestone. Akismet did not record spam from the very beginning which means that the actual figure may indeed be a lot higher than the one reported. The one million mark has been reached in the last three years.
I have tried a lot to reduce the amount of spam but have not found one reliable option to block spam before it reaches the blog. Tried a lot but nothing worked, or interfered with regular commenters who started reporting troubles.
Next to the one million spam comments are more than 79k legit comments, a ratio of 1:12.6 which I think is incredible.
Are you a webmaster? How do you cope with spam?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.