Wednesday, April 01, 2009


As many of you are aware, I do most of my blogging late at night. This
sometimes leads to my overlooking the obvious.

Tonight, I received two comments about blogposts. One of them read
as follows:

"I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought
I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I
have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often."

A hour or so later I was reading Crag Manson's post on GeneaBlogie about the
genealogy blog discussion and among the comments was one with the
exact same wording as the one on mine, even down to the misspelled
"accross" , but sent by a person with a different name than the one
sent to me.

I went back and looked at the comment sent to me, and then noticed
that while it was sent under one name, it was signed under another.

I then noticed that both the comment sent to me and the one sent to
Craig had links to two seperate websites that had nothing to do with
genealogy: mine was for a site dealing with "happy toddlers" and the
one to Craig was on laptops.

So. I'm assuming this is some marketing tactic that relies on the idea
that generally a blogger will out of courtesy or curiousity check out a link
that is included with a comment.

I've removed the comment from my blog. If I'm wrong, I apologize.
But if I'm right, I don't want somebody using my blog to lure folks to their

Better safe than sorry.


geneabloggers said...


I see this across all of my blogs - frequently these spammers will comment on old posts. Wordpress has a setting where you can prevent comments on posts older than 14 days. I'm not sure if Blogger has the same mechanism.

This is why blog owners should always have some form of comment moderation and also check comments every day. The standard spammer comment usually includes statements such as "nice blog" or "I will visit often."

Thomas MacEntee

John said...

Yes, these spam comments that praise your blog, but don't really say anything specific about it, and link to commercial sites are fairly common. The 'Turing Test' of series of letters people must type in isn't completely computer-proof.

Occasionally I even get such a comment that actually references the post, but I think the computer program actually does a blog search on keywords and responds to those keywords.

Kiril The Mad Macedonian said...

I've been blogging since 2002, and learned fairly early about the dangers of Comment Spam.

If they aren't plugging, drugs, sex, and ro, um, I mean some weird business scheme, you can still tell by the wording, the URL, name of the commentor, or which post they comment on, if you want to approve it, or visit the site.

Comment Moderation, with, or without word verification, is a must as it simplifies the process so much by catching most of them, and droppin ghtem in the spam list for easy deletion.

Wendy said...

Read your comment on Midge Frazel's blog - I also descend from the Keith and Packard families in Bridgewater (where I grew up).

I'm definitely going to have to follow your blog! :)

Wendy said...

P.S. Those spam comments on blogs bug me too. I just delete them. Easiest thing to do. Or, of course, the comment moderation.

Ambar said...

Right. The purpose is to increase the Google ranking of the linked-to website.

Bill West said...

Thank you all for your comments!

Bill West said...

Which Packards and Keiths are your ancestors?

And welcome to my blog!

Wendy said...

Hi Bill!

I descend from Rev. James Keith through his daughter Mary, who married Ephraim Howard; through his daughter Margaret, who married Joseph Hunt; and through his son Josiah, who married Mary Lathrop.

As for Packard, both my husband and I descend from Samuel Packard and Elizabeth Stream - he through their daughter Deliverance, who married Thomas Washburn, and I through Mary who married Richard Phillips, and Zaccheus who married Sarah Howard.

And Richard and Mary (Packard) Phillips's grandson, Joshua Phillips, married Mary Hunt, daughter of Margaret (Keith) and Joseph Hunt.

Phew! And it's worse with my Mayflower ancestors... All marrying each other, making me my own grandma! LOL

Bill West said...


Cool! Another cousin discovered by
means of blogdom.

Did you know that Chris Dunham
of Genealogue is another Packard

Wendy said...

Cousins, cousins, everywhere! I'll have to check out Genealogue.

Craig Manson said...


I was suspicous of that first comment but appoved it because it seemed plausible. After that I received identical comments from different names and addresses. It was clearly spam!

Alana said...

Hi Bill,

I got the same comment tonight on one of my posts, except the word "across" was actually spelled correctly. The add on the bottom was for very expensive handbags.

The comment has since been deleted.