Flagging comment spam is a regular part of curation. Let’s learn how!

in utopian-io •  4 years ago  (edited)

Steemseph Talks Comment Spam SunGlass.gif

Hi Neighbors! This post is a reply to this inspiring post from Utopian-io.
https://steemit.com/utopian-io/@utopian-io/utopian-anti-abuse-let-s-spread-knowledge-awareness-and-participation Be sure to read about their new anti-abuse efforts.

Abuse Category:

Comment Spam




After reading this I hope that you too will be able to identify spam. It’s important and easy for everyone to identify and avoid a few forms of comment spam.

Upvoting spam encourages spam. It also gives spammers the impression that they have a spammy-loving naive audience for them to spam all over. The spammers are looking to benefit through saturation.

Numbers! Don’t let’em trick ye. Flag that spam if your SP is high enough. Stay safe and keep reading to see how me and many other spam fighters approach comment spam.

Also learn how I use my little eyes to quickly scan over the new Steem accounts I encounter.

Let’s talk about the types of comment spam specifically. Three types of comment spam come to mind...

🐷 The aggrandizer 🐷

The aggrandizer says, “Nice blah, blah, blah, bro, dear… (sometimes your name in there)” types of comments.

They like to copy and paste their comment over and over and over again on different users' posts. Sometimes, this spammer thinks a small modification to their comments justifies rewards upon their useless comments.

How to spot an aggrandizer
If you look at their comments tab, the minor changes appear every 5 comments or so. There are small variations of comments to trick you into thinking it's not spam... but it is.

Possible reason for continuing this MO
The spammer isn’t really adding anything. They are just looking for a lazy/lonely person to give them an upvote with saturation in mind. Or they are under the illusion that a random whale will just happen to see their spammy comment and take pity.

I know, I know, it’s a money thing too… sometimes a fraction of one currency is worth a lot in another currency. Still, it’s annoying and nobody is entitled to be here on Steem. Did I say that already? Let's just move along.

🐷 The self-commenter 🐷

This might possibly be the very worst reward-pool-raping-comment-spammer there is. The spammer that comments to himself over and over and over and over again with small rewards on all of the self-replies they've fabricated.

The rewards are usually coming from self-upvotes via delegated SP, or simply through an alt account’s upvotes. This starts to sound like vote farming.

Even whales are prone to this abuse. They keep replying to a 4-month old post and upvote those comments.

How to spot a vote-farming self-commenter
The first type, we view the comments tab. For this type, simply view the “replies" tab in Steemit.

The spammer's comments are sometimes hidden within their own previous comments and therefore will not appear in the “comments” tab. You’ll notice many consecutive replies by the same user that owns the account.

Yup, they are the most abundant commenter in their own replies tab. That's because they are replying to their own replies over and over and over and over and over again. I’ve seen weeks worth of copy/pasted comments... from a bot that gets upvoted by a second irresponsible bid bot service.

Sounds a little like vote farming and bid bot abuse again!!! See this gif below for an example of this comment spammer.

CommentSpammerGIF 2.gif

Possible reason for continuing this MO
This is the fastest way to earn curation rewards and it's not easily seen compared to shit posting. Delegated SP expires so self-voting comments and replies is the best ROI. Bid bots upvoting comments are available and you don't have to fight others with curation rewards. Yup, money thing again.

🐷 The greeter 🐷

The highly debated #introduceyourself tag comment spam kind of guy or gal. Only highly debated because someone around here needs to have a legitimate comment service or committee for greeting new users.

Anyway, the introduceyourself comment-tag-spam-sluts are a bunch of spammers that stalk the #introduceyourself tag leaving comments that supposedly greet new users. Take a look at this screen shot.

How to spot the greeter
I don't think I need to show you how to do this. But here it is.

Click that Steemit logo, under All tags you should see the famous #introduceyourself tag. Then take a pick of any of those posts and peruse the comments.

If your on a mobile device (iphone), press on your image icon, press on feed, press on "My Feed" and then scroll through the list that appears until you see the introduceyourself tag. Follow the red arrow in this GIF:

Steemseph Into Tag Iphone .gif

Do this if you are on a desktop computer. (PC)


Possible reason they continue this MO
Wait, do we care? Let's try, no wait... no, yes, let's try...

Some commenters just upvote their own comments after greeting a newbie. Guaranteed vote farming.
Others flood the newbies with links and Discords. Will that constitute recruiting? For what?

I can debate the long term damage. Think about how you felt when you discovered that the person you were extremely grateful to was only copy/pasting comments just like the one you thought made you special?

Buzz kill! Bad first impression! Bad for Steem!

I would rather see a million comments from @TransparencyBot before one more of those fake intro tag comments. Hey,what introduction/new user outreach is better in your opinion?

I actually mentioned several types of spam/abuse above, but how do the Pros define and differentiate between it all?

Utopian-io defines comment spam and the similar abuses I mentioned like this:

Comment spam - Comment has been repeated multiple times without regard to the post. One or two-word comments in multiple succession from a non-bot account.
Spam - Repetitively posting articles/pictures/videos with the same and/or similar content, or recyling content after a period of time or across multiple accounts. Spinning one's own, previously published content, is also considered spam.
Vote farming - Churning out content in quick successions which receives upvotes of an unreasonable number and/or size. This includes faucet delegation vote farms, collusive voting farms and other large groups that are voting on spam-type content.

Our lovable friends at @SteemFlagRewards (SFR) define comment spam this way:

Comment Self Vote Violation... When user leaves a comment favorable about post, does not upvote said post, and proceeds to self vote their own comment in a manner that causes it to be overvalued relative to similar comments of that type.
Comment Spam...When a comment has been repeated multiple times without regard of context.

I would say it like this:

Comment Spam is basically another word for a white noise, static, blabber, nonsense, bull sh!t, or aggrandizing type of comment that doesn't deserve much of a rewards and that doesn't deserve the right to get in the way and create an inauthentic environment.

Can you think of more synonyms? Please share in the comments section for an upvote if you think it’s fun to create more synonyms at the expense of a spammer's spammy little feelings.

How To Start Tracking A Spammer:

You can start by looking at the comments you get from your post. If it's a new face, awesome! But wait.

  1. Is the comment appropriate for your post? If you answered yes, don't stop. Move to step 2.
  2. Who is this guy/gal? Check their profile.
  3. Click on their Comments Tab. Are the comments repeated/recycled?
  4. Click on their Replies Tab. Are they replying to their own comments? Are there other accounts replying to them?

If the new face cleared steps 3 and 4, you got yourself a new genuine visitor.

If not, you've probably got a SPAMMER!

Ok, you got a spammer. So what? Flag their comment? Hold on...

How To Stay Safe:

Send me all your money. Just kidding… a joke because it’s easy to stay safe. Just don’t flag anyone with larger SP than you and check to make sure they don’t have a whale friend backing them up. Sometimes the retaliation will come from the money account.

For example look at this spam supporter bliss7! We caught either Bliss7 or the account wanabe doing some bad stuff. Instead of seeking reconciliation or simply disappearing, bliss7 has decided to flag me and several other spam fighters. It happens, there's help I'm grateful for, we move on and sink or swim.

Does the spammer you're about to flag show another large SP account supporting it?

  1. Check where the spammer's largest upvotes are coming from. To do this, go to Steemd.com. Check this crap supporter for example https://steemd.com/@bliss7.

    We can easily see all their curation history. Both upvotes and down votes. Lol, bliss is pissed.

  2. For a broad look at voting activity, lets look at SteemWorld.org. Check this same spammer again for consistency https://steemworld.org/@bliss7.

    Lots of down votes, but lets just focus on the information that is available. Stop laughing, @admiralbot is really really sad...not!

  3. Check where a spammer’s delegations are coming from too. SteemWorld.org is my favorite place to check delegation activity. Let's look a different spammy guy that has actually stopped his retaliation flag activities. https://steemworld.org/@mat1973

    Either my GIF scared him, or my conversation with @Steevc did it... not sure, but my point is I used info from the "Delegation" button on SteemWorld.org to say to the spammer, "Hey, we know your friends, and we think they would also disagree with what you are doing." Something like that, maybe nicer. I'm usually nicer.

To Do It Too: Type steemworld.org/@(user’s steem name) or Steemd.com/@(user’s steem name) to see many details about your Steem neighbors. Isn’t transparency a beautiful thing?

Poverty is a bitch, but this is Steem and nobody is entitled to be here tarnishing other people’s investment values. There are many people willing to help others earn and learn how to be of service to this Steem communities. Investing time into relationships and effort is also important on Steem.


Anti Abuse: https://join.utopian.io/guidelines/
and: https://steemcleaners.org/abuse-guide/
Mucho Info: https://steemit.com/@roadscape
and https://steemit.com/@steemchiller


Thanks for the delegations to SFR! It really helps us further incentivise curation and education. Thanks for covering our backs sometimes too.
Big, Big, Big, Big, THANK YOU!

Thanks for reading.

I hope you learned something or I hope you remember to show this to someone that doesn't already know this information.
Preaching to the choir sounds nice, but I hope this article finds it’s way onto a path of a future spam fighter.

...is also @steemseph and this was posted with Busy.org!

Authors get paid when people like you upvote their post.
If you enjoyed what you read here, create your account today and start earning FREE STEEM!
Sort Order:  

Wow what a long post. When I opened it I didn't want to read it it was so big. Once I got started it was an easy read.

Love the gif it is a nice touch. Thanks for doing an incredible job and putting so much effort into this post.

Wow how long did this take to produce? Are the little pigs some kind of a subliminal message to @flugschwein? HE HE

Poor @admiralbot he is getting all those Bliss 7 flags.

LMAO, I almost added a bunch of pinball stuff but it seemed a little far fetched. It does look long and boring at first but then that GIF with the instructions on how to find the info tag on a PC got you hooked, right?! 😁

Short answer: It took about 7-9 day to create. I had to learn the devilish details of a few things this time around, but I’ll get faster.
Blah blah blah: I started writing the body of the post a few weeks ago... or almost a month ago. After seeing the Utopian post I decided to make it work for that. I had some excellent help and encouragement too!

Yeah 🐷’s are spammy looking, but they smell like an old barstool’s busted seat cushion. @flugscheein is a highly evolved creature possibly sent here from computer heaven. Total different, he has wings and smells more like a bacon maple donut (or maple “Long John” with bacon).

Isn’t there a classic tank called the admiral... there should be.

What a great post. There are certain comments on my posts that raise my suspicions, especially if they look too generic. Checking that person's comment history will confirm if they are a spammer and they may find themselves flagged.

There's a nasty type that posts pointless comments which they give a big vote without giving anything to the original post. Please don't give them any encouragement. Report them to the people doing Steem Flag Rewards and we'll take care of them as far as we can.

Thanks @steevc that means a lot to me. You're a great service to the Steem community and that type of concern for checking the commenter’s authenticity practices is a very reasonable expectation for all Steem users. I’m glad you shared your approach. It’s probably an obvious practice for some of us, but new users benefit from hearing us speak about it.

Thanks for your support and bravery my Chickn’ Pickn’ friend! (Hellcasters are awesome therefore “Chickin Pickin” is a compliment, especially comeing from this “big fingered” little stinker.)

It's my pleasure to support those who want to make this a better place

Looks like that Bliss guy really hates you. I was surprised he's left me alone for the most part now.

But yeah, the #introduceyourself tag is painful to look at for me. Then, you have the comment spammer who vote for themselves on day 6 to avoid suspicion.

I think I got him stuck in my fer when I upvoted and interacted with he and @Steevc probably some well deserved follow on flags too.

That tag is a can a worms. Most of the into tag spammers are abusing in a different way.
Day six strategy, shhh.

Look on the bright side, it's hard to bring you down now. :D

Good post.

Giggles! About time someone explains how to separate spam from a person who speaks no English. Before you flag I think it's a good idea to first find out who/what you are dealing with. Sometimes I see something I think is spam, but when I dig deeper I find someone expressing their appreciation for a video or picture in the only English words they know. Sometimes the reverse is true and I find someone posting massive amounts of copied comments all over. I also do not have any objections to someone linking another's video in their post, but they should at a minimum include a bit of text, explaining why they are doing so.

Thanks for working to improve the issues/definitions. Greetings!

Giggles? That’s good, but the missspelled stuff was an accident.
Ohhh, yes, the language differences... yes, kinda forgot about that. Lots to talk about, but worth mention it along with this always.
Also, checking to see just how old an account is, to see if maybe a real person can be reasoned with, is a compassionate practice... giving warnings or polite advise... all good point for a follow up, or piggy back. 😁
Thanks for caring and commenting.

I am glad others have taken on the task of this sort of thing, as I don't really bother. I think it's probably more about my own self involved time on the platform, that I don't bother flagging or investigating those who might be doing so.

Of course I am just plankton, thus not a target for spamming, if that changed maybe I would change my tune. But, it is good that others are willing to police it, so good job.

I love your ink series. Those posts deserve lots of upvotes. https://steemit.com/inktober/@donnadavisart/inktober-day-21-and-22-combined-expensive-drain



You @donnadavisart can help without flagging too if you want. If your ears start ringing it’s good. I’m either talking about how someone can pay you or I’m thinking about how I can pay you for your talent if you would like to participate.

Thank you so much, of course I'd love more upvotes, who wouldn't?

Well, I hope my ears ring, as I'd love to participate and things and I love getting paid, so win win :)

I quickly mentioned you in a live radio show today. I saw your name in the server for PAL Discord, right? They were talking about steemflagrewards and someone mentioned involving all types of people's "talent" with flag curation and as anti-abuse support. I hope something comes of that. I also want to be able to suggest your artistic services to other anti-abuse efforts, but I'm not sure how yet. I see a need for original imagery or parodies.

The other project I hoped could use your service only does "volunteer", but that doesn't mean I can't pay you something for something and then apply it to that project, right? I've been a full-time musician for almost 9 years, because I don't volunteer my music. I hope we can work out something beneficial. I'll start saving up my Steem if I need to.

I imagine describing a project requiring 7-9 pieces of your work... create some bosses/enemies and maybe some blog post type of accessories to maintain it's theme. It would be for a run of the game known as Interactive Battle Tournament. I want to create a 7 stage IBT like they already do, but with your art instead. Mimic stuff that has already been done in the previous IBTs, but help me create an ice themed parody. I would do the art and stuff and it would be posted with the bot that runs the game, @wizardzap

These three links are a few older examples of IBT.




Yes, lets create a win win. I don't hear that enough in life.

Flagging spammers/scammers is so important for Steemit! Thanks for all you do @steemseph. I do feel like it's been getting less and less. Or maybe the spammers/scammers just don't come my way anymore knowing they'll get flagged. lol.

Anyways, I was dropping by to tell you about the new 'Show Us Your California' contest we are doing for #socalsteemit. We'd love to have you participate!

Yes, if the spammer come your way I will flag them. :) I think HF20 helped some. Thanks for supporting me and believing in our anti-abuse efforts.

Did you say,

Show Us Your California Contest?!

Thanks for letting me know. I have a DTLA series that would be perfect and I have a post burning a hole in the darft folder in my pocket too!

Hi @steemseph,
We wanted to let you know that this weeks Show Us Your California contest has started! We'd love to have you participate. We've got 4SBI up for grabs this week!

Thanks for the reminder!!! I needed that. I’m almost done with something!

Congratulations! Your post has been selected as a daily Steemit truffle! It is listed on rank 19 of all contributions awarded today. You can find the TOP DAILY TRUFFLE PICKS HERE.

I upvoted your contribution because to my mind your post is at least 10 SBD worth and should receive 130 votes. It's now up to the lovely Steemit community to make this come true.

I am TrufflePig, an Artificial Intelligence Bot that helps minnows and content curators using Machine Learning. If you are curious how I select content, you can find an explanation here!

Have a nice day and sincerely yours,

Thanks for sharing my post.

Hi @steemseph!

Your post was upvoted by @steem-ua, new Steem dApp, using UserAuthority for algorithmic post curation!
Your post is eligible for our upvote, thanks to our collaboration with @utopian-io!
Feel free to join our @steem-ua Discord server

Awesome collaboration!
Thanks for the upvote and for supporting the authentic Steem community @steem-ua.

Hey, @steemseph!

Thanks for contributing on Utopian.
Congratulations! Your contribution was Staff Picked to receive a maximum vote for the anti-abuse category on Utopian for being of significant value to the project and the open source community.

We’re already looking forward to your next contribution!

Get higher incentives and support Utopian.io!
Simply set @utopian.pay as a 5% (or higher) payout beneficiary on your contribution post (via SteemPlus or Steeditor).

Want to chat? Join us on Discord https://discord.gg/h52nFrV.

Vote for Utopian Witness!

Thanks for inspiring awareness on the Steem block chain. I'm also grateful for the personal support and the opportunity to participate. You have an excellent team of people working on anti-abuse initiative. More to come. :)

The spammer has spammed! Loling!



I almost flag a witness account because he keep repeating in his comments to vote for him and I've done so before he asked 😂 I can't imagine if a plankton like me flagging the orcas.

Anyway.. thanks for sharing this, I told those who don't speak english account to change their habbit on commenting in english.. they'd better use their own language so no body would flag them for typing "good post brother" on a girl's account.