There’s a new trend in spamming these days and it involves posting links to a website in the comments of popular weblogs so that when Google crawls the page and sees a link to the site it increases the page ranking for the site at Google. This new kind of spam is all about gaining page rank as the comments themselves are designed to be innocuous enough not to attract attention. Something along the lines of “interesting article” or “nice site” except that the field for leaving a webpage has a link back to a porn or other site that’s trying to gain page rank. Just today I got hit by the same comment spam 10 times in a row as did Anne’s blog.
MT has an IP banning option, but unless you use wildcards it’s of little use because they just change their IP address via a dialup account and post again. Plus you have to add the IP in, then go to each comment and delete it and then tell the system to rebuild the pages in question to remove the comment. A real pain in the ass and not very effective. Clearly a better solution is needed. Well Jay Allen over at The Daily Journey came up with a way to ban comments based on the URL fragments of known spammers. It involved quite a bit of work to set up, though, so he’s now working on turning it into an official plugin called MT-Blacklist that he’s going to release tomorrow.
This plugin looks wicked cool too. Once you’ve installed it if you receive email notifications of new comments then a new link will be included that will allow you to quickly add offending comment spammers to your blacklist and then delete the comment and rebuild the page all in one fell swoop! This is going to be very useful and I plan to install it as soon as it’s available. If you run an MT blog and are having trouble with comment spammers then I suggest you check it out as well.