Subscribe to
NSLog(); Header Image

Interview with a Spammenter

I found this interview interesting. It reminded me to check my logs. Apparently I'm doing pretty well for myself with MT-Blacklist. In the past 30 days, I've had some 25,000 spamments blocked. I've had to manually delete only 7 spamments.

My blacklist makes liberal use of URL Patterns like "\bdebt\b" and "\bhold-em\b" and it's been working well. They catch nearly all of the comment spam. Some others - "phentermine" and "vioxx" and "cialis" (which, admittedly, will trip up people who spell "specialize" with an "s" instead of a "z") - act as good catch-alls.

Update: I've updated my blacklist message with to list the affected word, so if you've commented here before and been blocked, the message should be more helpful now. ("Your __SUBMTYPE__ was denied for questionable content. The item matched was __ITEM__ (from the text __TEXT__). Please rework your comment so that it doesn't include the inappropriate items.")

5 Responses to "Interview with a Spammenter"

  1. Could you set the string as " cialis" (that is with a space before it) to avoid blocking British, Canadian, etc. spelling?

  2. No. "" has no space.

  3. Interview with a link spammer | The Register

    A thin interview with a link spammer at The Register. Nothing really new or interesting. Link courtesy of NSlog.


  4. While this is true, setting up two URL Pattern matches like this will avoid blocking "speci_alise" or "speci_alist" whilst still catching anything beginning or ending with "ci_alis" --



    You have to split them up in order for the catch-all-ness to work; if you combine them like this


    you'll only catch stuff where "ci_alis" stands alone in the domain name.

    (Underscores inserted to avoid MT-Blacklist 😉 )


  5. I'll take my chances and be happy to block as well. People are now told what the error is, so they can figure it out.

    And as you may note, TypeKey members can post nearly anything.