Blog Spam is a Pain in the…

Lately we’ve had issues with blog spammers creating annoyances with some of our sites at BootsnAll. The volume on our soccer blogs has been pretty insane. During live blogs of games there was a noticeable slowdown caused by the spammers coupled with visitors refreshing pages and posting high numbers of comments. Initially, I was suspicious of a few plugins, which may still not be well optimized, but after getting mod_status running on one of the servers and monitoring activity, it was becoming obvious that it was more than just plugin issues.

We already run Akismet and Spam Karma on some blogs, and those do a good job of catching spam when it hits the server. The main problem with those plugins is that they still allow the spammers to post comments before taking action. I decided that we needed to give Bad Behavior a shot. The nice thing about Bad Behavior is that it stops most spammers before they can post comments. Soon after activating the plugin across the sites, the server loads were cut from averaging around 5 to 1.5 and around 4 to 1. I’m pretty happy with the results and hopefully we’ll make it through Euro 2008 with no problems.

Obviously we can’t prevent all spammers. Especially someone like the guy spamming for The Ski Channel on Gary’s skiing blog. Manual spammers will slip by, but as Matt Cutts said, making spammers lose time or frustrating them is at least good for preventing spam.

I Hate Writing, so Why Do I Have a Blog?

I have had several friends ask me why I even have a site/blog if I hate writing so much. There are 5 main reasons:

1. Someday, I hope to stop hating writing and actually put some useful information on here that will help other people. Blogging about SEO and bitching about Google is way overdone, so I probably won’t go that direction even though I’m not half bad at it ;). Maybe I’ll find something to write about like photography or trying to lose some weight (yeah, right…like those aren’t overdone).

2. Alot of what we do at BootsnAll revolves around things relating to WordPress. I use this blog to learn about the software and keep up with updates so that we can make good decisions on upgrades, plugins, etc. It’s a good playground where I can blow things up without anyone caring. FAlbum is a good example of something that can blow up easily…

3. My family can easily find my photo album.

4. Reputation management. I rank first for my name and I hope that I always will. There’s some guy in California that appears to be a pretty good cinematic artist who is taking up quite a few spots in the SERPs, so I may have to fight to hold my spot. I want people to find my site if they’re looking for me. I don’t have many enemies (jk Mika 🙂 ), so hopefully nobody bad comes looking for me.

5. Because everyone else has a blog…

Killing Time in Venice

Just sitting here in a cafe at Marco Polo Airport in Venice checking my email and killing time. Bought 60 minutes of access for about $6.50 (depending on what the exchange rate actually is for USD to Euros). I’m waiting for Sean to get here and we’re being picked up by one of our Hostel partners.

On the way in, we flew over the Alps, which were beautiful. Here’s a pic: