I already did one post on SPAM today (read it here: Bloody Sexual Twitter DM’s. Go Away!), so I might as well continue in that track with another SPAM related post for WordPress.
As a blogger, getting SPAM comments is to be expected and it happens every day for most blogs, several times a day also. Sure, you can install an annoying CAPTCHA plugin if you want, but that also makes life harder for your human visitors wanting to comment. I prefer to leave Akismet to take care of my SPAM and that WordPress plugin does a pretty good job at it too: 5,839 spams caught, 2,608 legitimate comments, and an overall accuracy rate of 98.757%.
Sometimes a SPAM comment does get through the filter (1.2%, apparently), but I still have to approve it before it appears on the site. Today, such a comment made it through and appeared in my mailbox, waiting for approval. Let’s have a look at it, I found it quite interesting as it’s the first one of this kind I’ve recived on TechPatio since launch back in Summer 2009.
Akismet is blocking from techpatio.com any of our grad students who use toyperiod.com as a home page.
Let me explain.
With few exceptions, our business graduate students have been rejected by sites using Akismet.
All it takes is one request from a blogger anywhere for Akismet to ban any home site, whether the blogger is delivering spam or not. (None of our graduate students deliver spam. They are very intelligent commenters who like and enjoy your site, but have stopped visiting here, because Akismet is blocking them on your behalf.)
I am taking the time to write this because I believe your blog to be of high quality, and one from which both you and our graduate students would profit.
If you wish to have our grad students resume visiting your blog, please e-mail me at the College at [email protected], and I will place you on our faculty chart as a welcoming blog.
However, Akismet will have to lift the ban on ToysPeriod for you, or you will have to unplug your blog from Akismet.
The person to write to is Alex Shiel at Akismet at [email protected]
If you have not blocked ToyPeriod personally, that is even worse. Akismet has been known to universalize blocking.
That is, if one blogger anywhere reports a home page as spam, from then on, ANY person using that website as home page is blocked.
I do hope to hear from you.
If you ever wish to monetize your blog, Akismet will at some time or another have to be disconnected. Otherwise, as with our grad students, visitors will continue to be blocked, even if it is the first time they have ever visited your good site.
Dr. Ann Voisin
Linda Christas College
So what it’s saying is, if you have Akismet running on your blog, to filter SPAM comments, you are also blocking certain visitors. Don’t worry, it’s a SPAM trick.
I guess somebody decided to have their SPAM bot submit this comment on a bunch of blogs, hoping that the bloggers would disable Akismet and suddenly all the real SPAM comments would appear and spammers get the backlinks for viagra and all their other crap.
If you don’t pay attention, the comment above may seem valid, but I wouldn’t worry. I haven’t checked the Akismet source code, but I don’t see why it would ever reject visitors because I’ve marked a comment as SPAM before. Doesn’t make any sense and it would be really stupid by Akismet too.
Spammers are trying to get clever and clever every day – so beware and don’t fall for their cheap tricks!
I’m sure that Dr. Ann Voisin is not the person behind the above comment, but just a victim of the spammers. If it’s a fake name, then great. If it’s not, then at least I hope some search engine users will arrive at this post to learn that she is (most likely) not the person behind the comments.