This blog receives very little comment spam. This has a lot to do, I’m sure, with the fact that all comments are moderated. There’s very little motivation to spam a blog which is using comment moderation – after all, it’s not terribly likely that your cialis/viagra spam post will be making it through my very-human filter.
Every once in a while, however, I do receive some kind of comment which is very suggestive of spam – in the form of blatant marketing.
Today, for example, I received the following comment on a follow-up post I wrote about Dumbfind’s advertising program:
I think DumbFind is great, Congrads guys. Check out our recent web portal. Sprinko.com is a Fun way to search the web for news, images, articles, encyclopedia, dictionary and videos. Displays mini site images on all search results for better efficiency and site decision. Sprinko Note is a fast and easy way to paste content and send to an email with one click, no log-in required. Double click on any word and instant definition will pop-up
Now, does this read like sincere commentary? Not especially. It’s certainly not timely – since the original post was written in April of 2006. No, it reads like what I’m going to choose to call marketing spam.
Comment spam seems to be divided into a couple of categories – complete garbage (nonsense words pasted together) and publicity-raising. There’s a whole spectrum between the two, transitioning all the way into some very sincere and well-worded comments which are possibly made purely to get the person’s name or website better known. The challenge can be in identifying that middle-ground where a comment transitions from useful to spam.
This comment I received falls directly into the spam category. Why? Because it doesn’t even make more than a half-hearted effort to reference the post. The 7 word statement which relates to Dumbfind hardly manages to indicate any relationship to my thoughts. There’s no transition of any kind before the author breaks straight into marketing spiel, and no "real person" is associated with the comments.
Interestingly enough, this spam comment is not apparently for links. The comments contained no links; and the url supplied was for the profile of the Sprinko Blogspot account. Overall, a three-click trace to actual reach the Sprinko web portal.
So what has this comment accomplished?
Well, it’s made me aware of the Sprinko.com web portal. I did, in fact, go to the site. It was about what I expected; a fairly generic web portal with a couple uninspiring extra features. I’m not going to take the time to review it in any serious way for two reasons. First, my first impressions are that the site is pretty amateurish. Everything I see is fairly average. Second, I’m not willing to spend a lot of time on a site which uses this kind of marketing technique. My intent, originally, was to write a vitriolic review – but the site doesn’t actually merit that. It’s nothing special, either in a positive or a negative light.
Ultimately, what’s the worse review – a passionate complaint, or a shrug of the shoulders and dismissal?