Spam + Blogs = Trouble

In addition to creating massive numbers of phony blogs, sploggers sometimes take over abandoned real blogs. More than 10 million of the 12.9 million profiles on Blogger surveyed by splog researcher Vasa in June were inactive, either because the bloggers had stopped blogging or because they never got started. (The huge mass of dead blogs is one reason to maintain a healthy skepticism toward the frequently heard claims about the vast growth of the blogosphere.) “Nobody is watching or moderating the comments and posts on those abandoned blogs,” says Tim Mayer, director of product management for Yahoo search. As a result, he says, scammers are looking for ways to hack the interface of these blogs to post to them and take advantage of their inbound links to increase the ranking of spam sites. For obvious reasons, it is difficult for a Google or a Yahoo to discern when a previously valuable site and its links slip over to the dark side and become part of a spam empire. —Charles C. MannSpam + Blogs = Trouble  (Wired)