In a pair of previous posts I lauded Google’s progress in the war on Spam on its Blogspot service. Though my intuition was confirmed, at least somewhat, by Google itself, it appears I might have spoken too soon.
I recently ran across this link on the social news site Reddit. It is a submissions listing for the user “lecoq”, who has submitted hundreds of entries from various Blogspot Blogs. All of the entries that I checked contained content found first on other sites and all were surrounded by different ad units, usually from several different ad networks.
The end result is that these blogs appear to be nothing more than the traditional definition of spam. However, the list, which appeared on the front page of Reddit a few days ago, has not resulted in any removals by Google.
It does appear though, at this moment, that this is the work of a human and not of an automated scraper. There seems to only be about six spam blogs involved and they pull from a variety of sources.
Though this definitely does not follow the typical format for a spam blogger, it is worrisome that, even after all of the attention this list received, that almost none of the blogs have been shut down. It is obvious, given the submission pattern, that the intent here is to spam social news sites with copied content, and spam is a violation of Google’s Blogger Content TOS.
Hopefully, the offensive is ongoing and this is just a hiccup in the system, probably caused by the human element in the posting, and that Google will address it soon. In the meantime, I’m going to keep an eye on this list and see about contacting some of the content owners to alert them of the misuse.
I encourage others to do the same.