What made me look at this blog for the first time in quite a while was hearing my wife talk about changes to the comment system on gawker. When I looked at my own blog spam, I saw something interesting...
Mid to late august of this year a series of comments were posted to this blog. I've seen these comment storms in the past, but this time there were two distinct types of comments being posted. The first were the traditional, but they were closely followed by what appeared to be actual, thoughtful comments. But they were all off topic.
It appears that whatever mechanism is posting them is cataloging real comments from elsewhere on the net, then matching them to the content of my own pages. Because the bot doesnt understand what is and isnt content, I get comments about the feading habits of pythons, and airline horror stories and questions about hosting services on random entries. It would seem that these are triggered to the 'powered by' section in the footer of my pages.
There were several hundred comments, posted over the course of a day, with each post coming about 2 minutes apart. And they are getting past the akismet filter. Blog spam is ultimately what killed my haiku site.
Modern websites that base themselves on engagement have to have comments at the core, and spam filtering is key to keeping the quality up. All of the spam I'm talking about here did not have links or any obvious promotional value. I have to wonder if they are part of a larger campaign of some sort to rid the net of anonymous comments. Forcing everyone into one type of registration system or another, be it facebook, google, oAuth, openId, or localized.
It seems that we are definitely passing beyond anonymity's twilight. Once identity is truly core to the internet experience, then the pay net can make a real stand.