When I chat with clients about data quality and social media research, I always explain to them that it’s a lot of work to search out and delete spam in their datasets. They usually have a vague idea of what spam is having received some of it via email, but I’ll agree that envisioning what spam is in the general internet space is a lot harder.
My blog posts get a lot of spam but fortunately WordPress does a great job at identifying and deleting much of it. But not all of it. I usually end up going through each comment, approving the ones that are actually about research, and deleting the ones that are about prescription drugs that don’t need an rx, naked celebrity pictures, money making schemes, and more. Indeed, the fact that I write those keywords here makes it easier for spammers to conclude that this post is a relevant place for them to leave their spam.
So here is what I plan to do. In order to help clients visualize what spam in the social media space looks like, I am going to accept every comment that is placed on this single blog post. Check out the links that spammers use, have a look at their email addresses, and appreciate the strange grammar. Come back often and see what strange things materialize!
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