Feel free to leave a comment. Occasionally people do. Comments await approval before they are displayed on this Blog, so it might be a day or two before they appear. My most diligent readers email me directly about pieces, and tens of thousands of words have been drafted and sent in private email conversations. All those words appear in our respective sent items and inboxes, and nowhere else. I would be happy for much of this dialogue to appear as threads on the relevant Posts but I shall continue to respect the privacy of those who communicate with me in that way.
In addition to the occasional valid comment, from a verifiable user, I have received thousands of Spam messages over the last couple of years. WordPress filters them out and every week or so I delete them. There are currently 112 awaiting my attention. If I leave them they will be deleted automatically at some point. I have decided to approve of 10 of them to create a record of the kind of things that are directed towards Blogs in the form of comments (auto-generated I assume). They all seem to be complimentary, for example, “Outstanding post, you have pointed out some excellent points …” and “I blog quite often and I seriously thank you for your information. This article has really peaked my interest”. It’s rather odd that all these kind words are almost certainly generated by software or robots rather than actual human beings. The display names of the people who have supposedly written the comments all link to URLs that contain the word “proxies”.
If you want to see what the comments look like you will find them on the pages listed at the end of this piece. I have not followed any of the links on them, or replied to any of the email addresses. I recommend that you do the same: avoid clicking on the names of the “people” who have posted the comments.
I shall leave these auto-generated comments on their respective posts for a while, as an experiment. Will they prompt an increase in Spam, or maybe an increase in valid comments, or an increase in traffic to this site? We’ll find out.
Here are the pages that contain comments marked as Spam by WordPress but approved by me, for the time being at least:
- Andy White and 50 quid man;
- Three recent Earworms, and why there might not be many more;
- Eurovision 2018;
- Word of the week: Super-Over;
- Footballers on the Underground;
- Word of the week: alphabetical (two comments);
- “Tenable” Series 2, repeated July 2019;
- “Tenable” questions, week ending 5 October 2018;
- Word of the week: interstitial.