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Weeding Out Bogus Blog Comments

I’m still trying find my blogging grove and trying to figure out how to weed out and/or approve comments. Most of my readers are great and offer great insight and information to this blog. I welcome comments even if they are not in agreement with my views. The purpose of this blog is to share information. I get to see one side of the coin while some of my readers may have viewed the other side and I do appreciate it when they share their view and/or opinion of the other site of the coin.

The ones that I don’t appreciate very much are the bogus blog commenters. They’re not spammers, just a very close cousin to spam. Sometimes it’s a bit difficult for me to determine whether or not the comments are bogus or spam. Luckily, since my blog is on the WordPress platform, I’ve installed Akismet, which is a spam catcher. However, there are some comments that even Akismet doesn’t catch.

Over the past few months in writing blog posts, I’ve come to find a few common characteristics in bogus comments. Here are the ones that I see most frequently:

  1. Keyword Names: The commenter does not use a first, middle or last name. Heck, they don’t even use a witty username. What they use are keywords to steer search engines to their site through backlinks. That’s a No Job for Mom no-no in my book (I know a few got past me, but I’m looking out for them now).
  2. Flattery: The old saying “Flattery will get you everywhere,” doesn’t work here. I’ve been around the block a time or 30, I know the difference between a compliment and empty flattery. Some folks will say anything just for a backlink.
  3. Promises to subscribe to my RSS feed: This is a sister to Flattery. If you are going to subscribe to my RSS feed, please do. However, there is no need to post a comment that says “I like your blog I guess I will subscribe to your feed so I won’t miss posts.” Oh, I forgot, such statements are usually signed by “keywords.”
  4. Several comments applied to different posts on the same day saying the same thing: I think that crosses the bogus line into the spam category.
  5. Thanking me in advance for approving a comment: Bloggers want to approve quality comments. No need to thank in advance unless you know that your post is really bogus and the false “thank you” is the flattery to get the post approved. Most people who submit quality comments assume that the post will be approved.

This is by no means a complete list of bogus blog comments. It’s just the ones that I’ve come across repeatedly. If you have a few “bogus comment gems” that I didn’t mention above, please share them. I could use the chuckle.

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Ian August 13, 2008, 8:04 pm

    I think this a good post and makes me feel more cautious about the blog I am starting. I have just read another post called “Blogs a growing target for site hackers” which makes me worried, especially as Wordpress user. Search for it on Digg, I have also Dugg this post for you which I found on Digg.

    Personally I always include an unobtrusive link to my website, such as with this comment, which I think is reasonable and I know this is a common practice encouraged by blog developers, like Wordpress, and commenting systems. That’s why the website field is in the comment form so that we can share.

    Not sure if I should subscribe to your RSS though, I want to but there is so much to do already, you know what I mean?! I’ll give it a go.

  • Felicia August 13, 2008, 8:28 pm

    Hi Ian,

    I just checked out the article you mentioned and dugg it. Thanks for the heads up. I’ve been putting off a few precautionary measures, but now I’m putting them on the top of my to do list.

    As far as the RSS feed, I get your drift ;D.

    I hope you’ll enjoy my future posts.

  • Frank C August 15, 2008, 7:35 pm

    I like to have fun with the flattery comments, most of which are generated by automated blog commenting software. I’ll pull their link from the comment and edit in a few extra things on the first go round. They rarely make a second appearance since somebody will have Akismeted them by then.

    I do allow anchored keyword comments since, when paired with the strict requirement that the comment has to be on topic and link to a decent site, it gives me a lot of free content. I even find my blog ranking for some of the terms that visitors left keywords for, one example being a particular brand of sunglasses.

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