Why do people spam blogs?

When I first started my blog, I had to turn the comments off, as I was inundated with spam. I tried having readers register, but no one could be bothered, so I forgot all about reader interaction.

Then came Akismet, a brilliant spam fighting plug-in that comes built into wordpress. It catches pretty well everything, so I feel fairly confident having my comments open. (Having written this I’ll probably be inundated!)

What I find interesting is the spam I get. xxx sites seem to have calmed down and almost disappeared recently. There are quite a few promoting medicine sites, but most now seem to be trying to promote what seem to be quite legitimate businesses. Some are quite local businesses too, that couldn’t hope to gain business from my site.

I think those businesses are being sold a dream of being first on the Google page of their business. One way to do this is to get links on other websites. One way to do that is to spam unsuspecting blogs who will end up with piles of spurious comments, all with links to business websites across the globe. If you know what you are doing, it’s money for old rope.

I’ve learned not to take it personally. I know that a button is pressed and robots troll off into the web looking for private installations of WordPress or other blogging software. They test the site to see if unsolicited comments are allowed, and then they post a spam message. This can either be a blatant list of links to other sites, or a carefully crafted and often quite flattering message about what a great blogger you are and what a scintillating post you just wrote. I’m sure many bloggers approve those by mistake.

They seem to come in waves. When they find they can leave a message on my site they must send out a signal to others, who all turn up in hope. When they get spammed, they disappear again and, thanks to the way Akismet works, everyone else is then protected from the same messages

It all seems such a waste of time and effort to me. And what must those spammers think of themselves? Do they think they are the knights of the internet, hacking their way to the front page? Yes, cream does float to the top, but so does scum. How do they live with themselves knowing that they are irritating little parasites, like useless tapeworms, living off the hard work of others, adding nothing to this life? I suppose some people just have no conscience.

I’m sure they must have skills that could be put to much better use. I suppose that, like big fleas that have smaller fleas, even spammers have someone living off them. I hope they find that irritating too!

Meantime, thank you Akismet!