Today I received the following in my email box:
Yep, Twitter blog spam. These kinds of sucker fish latch on to the RSS feeds of others and then repost the same exact information, but with surrounding contextual banner ads. They set up each website once and then it all happens automatically. Whoever sets the site up can just check their bank account each month to see how many click-thrus they got. The more blogs they can set up, the more they can automatically make.
I figured this stuff out because there are some spammers that regurgitate Rocketboom feeds too, though I have always reported them to Technorati and Google Blogs (currently there is just one or two).
The Techcrunch article Rocketboom was cited in got regurgitated by over 40 different spam blogs (BTW, thanks to Paul L. for pointing out a comment from Michael Arrington clarifying that “Interesting” just meant “Interesting to him”).
You can imagine Techcrunch is happy to have 40 blogs per article link to them just to start with, let alone all of the other blogs that link to them that are actually intentional. Thus the auto-blogs have an easy time existing and perpetuating because they increase the link status of the fish they are feeding on.
One of my favorite blogs in the world, Gizmodo, probably has the most spam blogs attached to it that I have ever seen. Here is a headline from yesterday that has 70 links (over 50 spam links) with the same exact headline, “Jet-Man Is So Cool It Hurts“.
What should be done about this? Anything?
**update: Rex Hammock calls these kinds of blogs “splogs” (in a comment on Heather Green’s Business Week column). Splog is actually short for “Spam Blog”, I’m just leaning. It seems that they are in fact often created by the bloggers themselves for link authority. I guess when applied to Twitter it would be Spit Splogs.
It would make an interesting study to see how the ranking of Technorati might change without all the fakes.