Monday, June 04, 2007

For Behold, I Am Spam

I apologize once again for my absence, but this time it was excused. Google, which owns Blogspot, locked my blog. They sensed I ran a "spam-blog." Of course, you guys already knew this, but it seems like I had Google fooled there for awhile, and regardless, I can't stop you from coming here no matter how annoying, repetitive, or senseless the content. Google, however, can stop me from publishing at their whim. And they could probably just delete my toxic keyboardings.

Below is the message I got over the weekend, when checking in to see the status of my protest. I got something similar to it when I tried, blog-locked, to publish a post last week about Peggy Noonan:
Your blog is locked

Blogger's spam-prevention robots have detected that your blog has characteristics of a spam blog. (What's a spam blog?) Since you're an actual person reading this, your blog is probably not a spam blog. Automated spam detection is inherently fuzzy, and we sincerely apologize for this false positive.

We received your unlock request on June 1, 2007. On behalf of the robots, we apologize for locking your non-spam blog. Please be patient while we take a look at your blog and verify that it is not spam.

Find out more about how Blogger is fighting spam blogs.
Umm...Peggy? For once, I was complimenting you! Of course I immediately felt safer, even when the only recourse the Googleites gave me was to fill out a word verification field with a vague promise of reviewing my blog for appropriateness. Heuristics, meet tautology. Paranoia, meet "everyone is out to get you." Here we are 5 days later, the embargo is lifted, and I don't know why it happened in the first place. There was no explanation whatsoever as to why it happened, or what I could do from it happening again. Just that robots are inherently "fuzzy."

This has been instructive. In certain conditions, one might want to look beyond using Google, a free host, or a U.S.-based hosting service. If your words or those of your commenters are found to be objectionable by your host or the entities it must answer to, you can be classified as "spam" and sent into the nether-world spam-centration camp for an indeterminate period, with no established lines of recourse. (First, they came for the spammers...) I don't want to give concerned governments any advice, or point them to techniques in history, temporarily successful as they may have been.

To be clear, I don't think this was anything other than a screw-up in Google's heuristical robo-efforts to reduce the threat of spam. As it is, Google's stock is starting to look a little high to me. And I don't think we're going to be carted off to the camp recently constructed by Halliburton in the eastern part of the State. At least not before next winter, when some illegal immigrants go. But, if you think about it, spam is terrorism by other means, and all blogs are spam-like. So all our blogs are subject to approval. Like mine, apparently. Blogs are inefficient, subversive, incestuous, unapproved, counterproductive, and uncomfortably free. Whether blogging from work or at home, we'll all need to be reviewed. Fortunately, there are bots to help us.


All Blog Spots said...

nice blog

ken said...

It is strange that a robot spam detector(ess) should think that you are sending spam. I think you must be paying someone to spread your blog globally. A spammer sends millions of messages. Come on now fess up. Your intending to make big ad bucks on the hits generated by all those viewer hits! Lol..
Maybe its your name. Change it to Adoredbynoone.

MarcLord said...

Hi Ken,

haha, adoredbynoone would be much closer to the mark. How you doin?

Actually I think the google spam-bot was triggered by two comments downstream, one of which used all-caps in the way teenagers sometimes do when texting, the other of which was for a Portuguese T-shirt service. In Portugese. Still, you'd think Google would be smart enough to differentiate comments from posts. (I guess snot.)