Texas Hold ‘Em is one of the topics I get the highest volume of comment spam on. Spammers spray weblogs with comments including links to their own Texas Hold ‘Em sites, hoping to boost those sites in the rankings at search engines. Then they make money when people click through from searches to those sites. Often their sites are completely useless and simply redirect to other sites, or to nowhere, or are just full of ads but with no real information.
So I thought: why not hit them where it hurts? If I post a story titled “Texas Hold ‘Em”, with links to legitimate resources, that story will probably rise fairly far in the rankings, pushing their sites down. Also, my links to legitamate Hold ‘Em resources will help push their rankings up, also pushing the spammer sites down. And it will help people who are searching for information: it will make them a little more likely to end up at a “real” result, and less likely to end up at some bogus useless site propped up only by spammed links.
What if I did this for all frequenly spammed topics? And,what if lots of people with weblogs did this? Would it result in a world where a search for “debt consolidation” resulted in tons relevant hits to good advice and genuine, not-for-profit services, instead of page after page of “debt-consolidation-info-dotcom.com”? And would comment spammers realize this, and understand that every weblogger they annoy may become another crusader in the new info wars, redirecting more traffic with one well-resarched post than they can with months and years of mindless spamming?
Probably not. But I did say the idea was half-baked.