The world’s friendliest spam bot
Spam is one of the scourges of the Internet. (How’s that for the most obvious statement of the year?) There was a time not long ago, before I eliminated one of my constantly-spammed e-mail addresses, that I was getting upwards of 250 spam messages a day. I’m sure that number is low by some people’s standards, but it was absurd by mine.
By removing the offending address (firstname.lastname@example.org, so don’t send anything there) I was able to cut my spam by two-thirds. Which makes me wonder how that address became such a spam magnet, considering I hadn’t used it or publicized it well over a year. I guess it was in a lot of databases from the previous seven years.
I hate spam as much as the next guy. But I also find it vaguely unprofessional-looking when people put up their e-mail addresses publicly and try to hide them from bots with brilliantly conceived encryption like “jammer at jammersreviews dot com.” (I tend to think the spam bots would be smart enough to find that, but never mind.) My own position is that if you have a public e-mail address, you shouldn’t be so afraid of spam bots as to turn your e-mail address into something “cryptically clever.” You should take the spam hit on behalf of your customers.
Besides, that’s what spam filters are FOR. (If it weren’t for effective spam blockers, e-mail would be virtually intolerable because of the massive deluges of junk.) With today’s good spam filters (I think Gmail’s are excellent), there’s no need to “fear” spam bots and hide from them.
Equally as common as e-mail spam is spam in web forms. If you run a blog or community web site, you know this all too well. Here at IDWID, in addition to the typically five or fewer legit comments I receive on my postings, I also get about 80 spam messages a day (all automatically filtered by Akismet, which is a godsend).
At my newspaper web site job, we run comments at the end of all our stories. We also have Akismet installed there, but quite a bit of spam still slips through to the pending queue.
Which brings me to the true subject of this posting.
In addition to the typical sex and meds and mortgage-info spam, there’s one particularly memorable spam bot that sends us stuff all the time. He stands out because of his strange name and his unending friendliness. His name is “rgergerger.” (I like to pronounce it reh-jer-jer-jer.)
Have you seen rgergerger on your site? I’ve seen him at work, as well as on postings at IDWID and through the web forms at Jammer’s Reviews. At work, we kinda get a kick out of rgergerger on a sort of inside-joke level: “This guy really likes our site.” “Who?” “Rgergerger.” (Fell for it again.)
The thing about rgergerger is that he’s always so damned positive and complimentary. I went through a sampling of his spam postings from work over the past few days, and here’s what he had to say about our wonderful web site:
rgergerger on 12/14/2007 07:28:05 said:
“I like it and the background and colors make it easy to readS”
rgergerger on 12/14/2007 05:32:34 said:
“Thank you for your site. I have found here much useful information…”
rgergerger on 12/14/2007 05:25:40 said:
“You guys do a wonderful job! Keep up the good work!!!l”
rgergerger on 12/14/2007 04:36:51 said:
“The site’s very professional! Keep up the good work! Oh yes, one extra comment – maybe you could add more pictures too! So, good luck to your team!”
rgergerger on 12/14/2007 04:32:46 said:
“Very cool design! Useful information. Go on!”
rgergerger on 12/14/2007 01:02:27 said:
“s prazdnikov vas
[ ^ I can only assume that’s meant as a compliment.]
rgergerger on 12/14/2007 06:06:50 said:
“Excellent site, added to favorites!!”
rgergerger on 12/13/2007 05:36:43 said:
“Oh o ho! very nice site!”
rgergerger on 12/13/2007 02:33:58 said:
“I you all love!r”
rgergerger on 12/12/2007 05:43:18 said:
“Hi! Definitely nice and neat site you got there.6” (
rgergerger on 12/11/2007 09:01:06 said:
“I have your site for its useful and funny content and simple design.”
rgergerger on 12/11/2007 05:08:25 said:
“Thanks so very much for taking your time to create this very useful and informative site. I have learned a lot from your site. Thanks!!”
rgergerger on 12/11/2007 01:38:42 said:
“keep up the good work!t” (from
rgergerger on 12/10/2007 06:20:13 said:
“You guys do a wonderful job! Keep up the good work!!!””
rgergerger on 12/10/2007 06:06:04 said:
“I’m love this great website. Many thanks guye”
He likes us! He really likes us! He might not have the best grammar or typing skills, but he likes us.
Just who, or what, is rgergerger? I’d like to know. I looked around very briefly on Google but didn’t find an explanation. (I found a blog posting titled “Who or What is Rgergerger?” but it didn’t really get to the bottom of it.) Who came up with the concept of a spam bot that has nothing but nice stuff to say and no advertising links to pitch?
Maybe the filters are removing the ad links, but the net result is the world’s friendliest spam bot.
Keep the praise coming, buddy!