What I put up with for you… tales of an unemployed webmaster

Attack of the crap (Courtesy of http://channelfrederator.ning.com/)

Attack of the crap (Courtesy of http://channelfrederator.ning.com/)

When starting Jobless and Less, I didn’t anticipate the sheer volume of crap that would come my way. Never mind the overwhelming crappiness of that crap. It’s an awesome spectacle… truly a sight to behold. Visualize my site as a friendly little spaceship floating along in the deep, dark reaches of Internet space, looking for signs of employment life. My shields are up, because Internet Space is a wondrous but dangerous place. Every few seconds some passing spaceship launches an Internet space turd attack. Most of them splatter against my shields, leaving me to continue on my merry way. Occasionally an Internet space turd infiltrates my defenses. It may wreak havoc, making me wonder why I bother with Internet space at all. Or it may just reek, forcing me to hold my nose while I laugh, point and make fun.

The crap of which I speak is also known as spam. What I receive mainly comes as emails and comments to posts, in numerous varieties and bouquets. One common form is the link request, from an awful site. They ask me for a link to get them some traffic and maybe a tiny boost to their Google rankings. These sites often have nothing thematically to do with Jobless and Less; a plumbing site was after me for the longest time to link up. Anyone visiting an unemployment site won’t care about a plumbing site, even a good one, and vice versa. But they usually persist. I ignore them, because they suck.

Most of the crap flung my way is stopped by filters and plug-ins (shields). It’s not worth receiving, and I don’t see it unless I go digging. One of my all-time favorites slipped through and appeared as a comment a couple weeks back. Here it is, with my comments interspersed…

Hey… I read your information from begining to the end and I think that is interesting information..

[It bring me joy that you read my infomation and you find pleasure in the mind from it to you.]

I think i will tell this information again to my friend and I hope this information will be usefull for them…

[I am grateful to you tell my information to your frend all over. i hope you find more friend soon to tell with my information also and share secrets of websites. that would plese me in the heart and the pants.]

oh yes I suggest you to check <a href=”http://www.XXXXXXXXXXXXXX.com/looking-for-work.asp” rel=”nofollow”>Are you looking for a job</a> on my site www.XXXXXXXXXXXXXX.com ,

[I will visited your site and find uses many. You are true friend with pure in heart. Maybe I be next friend to you 2.. I need fried to help work find.]

I hope the Information on my site will be usefull for you..and we can share each other. thank you… 🙂

[I want to enjoy sharing of each other. please send picture if you please and thank you… ;)]

This piece of literary brilliance overshoots bad and lands squarely in “so bad it’s good” (SBIG) territory. It has the poor spelling and grammar and vague wording that make an SBIG form letter so awesome, plus a little something extra. I’m almost willing to endure the hassles of spam to receive it… almost.

A few weeks ago a spammer co-opted my domain for their own nefarious purposes. They sent out email spam listing fake email addresses at Jobless and Less (ex. screwnorm@joblessandless.com) in the sender and reply-to fields. I received all the bounce-backs and automatic responses – 75+ in under five minutes. My service provider told me nothing could be done, but the minor annoyance will pass. Spammers apparently do this to everyone, cycling through domain after domain in a never-ending quest to boost sex lives the world over. They’re such a generous lot, always looking out. I’ve received 50-100 spam responses in brief flurries many times since then. I routinely wake up to hundreds of email responses in my inbox telling me that Fred no longer wants to “be ready for action 24/7” and Joan needs verification before she’s informed that her “…erotic nights are here to stay.” Deleting them can be a pain since legitimate emails are often sprinkled throughout.

I’ve developed a healthy respect for webmasters. Protecting a website from the constant barrage of crap is a lot of work. I’m also nursing a healthy hatred for spammers. The enjoyment they provide doesn’t make up for the time they waste. But spammers only continue because it pays. So I say to all the people clicking the links and buying Third World Viagra to stay rock hard, “STOP, you’re annoying the rest of us!” I’m trying to run a blog here, not an erectile dysfunction messaging service. One of these days I might just crack, get all monkey on you and start flinging the crap back. Nobody wants that. Just go to the damn doctor or drugstore and save us all the hassle.

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  1. dawn wrote:

    Oh, how this made me laugh. Part of my job is reviewing comments to our blog before they’re published, and 9 out of 10 are spam, and just the kind you mentioned. There are many that give you a generic I like this site;i it es intrsting. or, inexplicably, they include a line of stupid poetry before they include all their links.

    I sympathize, believe me!

    Wednesday, June 3, 2009 at 11:54 am | Permalink
  2. Dalilama wrote:

    Yeah, spam sucks. Pretty profound big guy! 🙂 It’s over 90% of all web traffic now. I do know what you mean about going through the filtering though. I don’t really use my Gmail account since while the filters there do catch 99.9% of the spam sent, it also snags about 25% of my legitimate emails and I’d have to go through 100 spam emails a day to find maybe 1 that incorrectly got caught. Well, until governments crack down on spammers worldwide, we’re screwed. But wait, isn’t that also on the new administration’s do out list after healthcare?… 😉

    Wednesday, June 3, 2009 at 9:53 pm | Permalink