If you run a blog, you've seen spam comments by the thousands arrive in the Akismet spam basket. So many of these are filled with dozens and dozens of links to porn/pills/etc. type sites. I mean seriously, each of the spam comments is just a huge long list of keyword-rich anchor text. Although Akismet catches most of them, I still have to manually mark a few of them as spam each day. This monotonous process got me to thinking. What would make these spammers stop? (If anything). And then I thought...well...what if Akismet shared all of this info with Google and the other search engines?
I'm thinking that if Akismet shared its spam database with the search engines, and the search engines used that info to kick sites out of their indexes, would that be an incentive to stop the spamming? I would think there would need to be some basic rules in place to make sure as few false positives as possible ended up in the spam database, but I assume there are a few smart cookies that could handle that task.
Obviously, I also think there would need to be some sort of appeals process for the false positives that do sneak through, but on the whole, this might be a good way to rid the world of much of the blog comment spam that exists.
I have a feeling there will be at least 100 people telling me why this would be a terrible idea, and I'm certainly willing to hear the reasons why. I might not be thinking clearly, who knows? But some days...like today...I just wish I didn't have to see yet another link-laden spammy blog comment in my moderation panel.
16 thoughts on “Suggestion: Akismet Should Connect With Google”
Hey that is a pretty cool idea!
To date it has caught over 43k comments for me.
No complaints here. Never has Akismet labeled something as spam that was not spam. The weird thing is I had 2 comments come through today that it didn’t catch. I have to manually approve comments so I sent those comments away.
I agree Donna, now that is a great Idea. Not to add a me too ending to this comment, but you said everything so well, what more could one add to this…
Thats an excellent idea. It has caught 35k over here.
Donna, looks like people like your idea. Can you take your idea any further?
Akismet is terrible for false positives, especially when people don’t understand fully how not pulling your comment out of the spam queue can cause you multiple problems down the road.
I also feel that in some ways blogs that are not running Akismet might gain some kind of penalty.
Google can already use Akismet in some ways, as they do have an API.
Andy, I’m thinking the false positives issues could be best dealt with on Google’s end (or whatever search engine). I would assume the search engine wouldn’t just blindly use Akismet data, but would analyze it and make decisions upon it, based upon their own ideas of what truly constitutes spam.
Akismet would merely be the data provider, and the search engine would work algo magic against that data. At least that’s how I see it unfolding in my head. 🙂
Donna, that is what I thought too. Wow, we think alike.
How scary is that, Dave? 😉
Perhaps we thought even more alike when you used to code in Coldfusion. 🙁
I guess I shouldn’t say that because I am starting my first PHP site next week.
On the surface this seems like a great idea.. But as a former ISP owner that has had to deal with anti-spam nazis tossing entire ip ranges in to black holes, with little to no recourse to get out, other than buying a new IP block or changing upstream providers, I have taken the stance that stopping spam is an end user issue..
The biggest problem you have is the issue of just how easy it would be to get a competitor’s website removed from the index by simply paying a couple hundred dollars to have some Russian or Indian posters go out and just spam blogs at random with your competitor’s information.. Even if there were an “easy” re-inclusion option, killing an ecommerce website right before Christmas could wipe them out..
This may not be 100 reasons, but I think just this one is enough..
Per Andy, Akismit false positives are horrible, particularly in the “internet marketing” arena… I had a post recently asking about user’s experience with MLM’s and EVERY comment got tossed in Akismit. Having mentioned it here, this could end up there as well!
I have several comment/day I have to remove from the spam queue. And commentors who get mad because their comments don’t show up, when in reality they were tossed into an Akismit spam hole and I missed it when doing my daily quality control check.
Feydakin has a great point too – this would make it VERY easy to get a competitor’s site nixed in Google. Don’t like the #1 listing since you’re #2? Comment spam his URL everywhere!
This actually happened with Squidoo lenses – people started trackback spamming their Squidoo URL’s on people’s blogs for link juice, then Squidoo figured it out and started deleting the accounts of people who’s lenses were using this technique. Then people started sending trackback spam with the URL of competing Squidoo lenses and getting them deleted.
Although it’s a great idea, I agree with Feydakin, it’s just too easy to get a competitor in trouble.
If you time “their spam campaign” right, it could mean that they’re out of business or at least unable to compete on the same playing field over the next few years.
It’s easier to spam blogs than buy a bunch of spammy links.
It would just add another expensive department that does nothing to help their index. They regulate this kind of spam by punishing the bloggers that let in slide on their blogs (I think) – in my opinion, this is the best and cheapest way to do it!
Those are definitely good points.
I’m a huge fan of Akismet so I’m all in favour of your idea. I hated trawling through pharmacy spam and Akismet saves me from that.
What I wanted when I created a forum a few months ago was to run forum posts through something like Akismet. I got so fed up of junk posts that I deleted my forum!
Why not suggest this to Matt Cutts Donna?
Comments are closed.