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Who Links Here

Tuesday, February 1, 2005
New Spam Wave

By Steven Taylor @ 7:53 am

Well, a while back I was able to get my comment spam under control (with some plugins installed with Kathy Kinsely’s help) and for the most part the comment spam since then has been light and manageable. However, it would appear that the new trick is Trackback spam, as the 200-plus poker-related trackbacks that I have received (and am continuing to receive) would indicate. Clearly the existing protections against comment spam don’t work against trackbacks.

All I can say is that these spamming idiots are a bunch of reprehensible bastards. At least is is just card-playing adverts and not incest and bestiality links (which, no doubt, will be arriving shortly).

Along the same lines, the NYT today has a story about the failure of federal anti-spam laws (there’s a shock):

Since the Can Spam Act went into effect in January 2004, unsolicited junk e-mail on the Internet has come to total perhaps 80 percent or more of all e-mail sent, according to most measures. That is up from 50 percent to 60 percent of all e-mail before the law went into effect.

To some antispam crusaders, the surge comes as no surprise. They had long argued that the law would make the spam problem worse by effectively giving bulk advertisers permission to send junk e-mail as long as they followed certain rules.

“Can Spam legalized spamming itself,” said Steve Linford, the founder of the Spamhaus Project, a London organization that is one of the leading groups intent on eliminating junk e-mail. And in making spam legal, he said, the new rules also invited flouting by those intent on being outlaws.

Lovely, but not surprising. Not to mention that given the nature of the ‘net, I have a hard time seeing a legislative solution to this problem.

As one spammer rightly noted:

“There’s way too much money involved,” Mr. Gillespie said, noting that his service, which is currently down, provided him with a six-figure income at its peak. “And if there’s money to be made, people are going to go out and get it.”

The laws of supply and demand and all that.

The only possible solutions are going to have to be tech-based, not legislative in nature. Indeed, while i get a fair share of e-mail spam, Thunderbird does a pretty decent job of filtering most of it.

Update: Looks like I’m not the only one.

  • Zygote-Design linked with Trackback spam
  • Arguing with signposts… » trackback spam update linked with a pingback

Click here to go to the main page.

3 Comments»

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: http://www.poliblogger.com/wp-trackback.php/6074

  1. See my post with a link to an interview with a link spammer. Kind of interesting.

    I also had the overnight trackback spam problem on the WP blog I run. So far I simply disabled trackbacks, but I’d like to come up with something better.

    Comment by Jay — Tuesday, February 1, 2005 @ 9:45 am

  2. Yeah i got hit with the same thing. Word Press needs to do something about this.

    Comment by Jeff — Tuesday, February 1, 2005 @ 12:04 pm

  3. Three rules for the spam game:

    1) you can not win.
    2) you can not draw.
    3) you can not leave the play.

    Greetings,

    Antonio, from Malaga (Spain)

    Comment by windows — Sunday, February 13, 2005 @ 10:22 am

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