Effie Gray, the Root of All Spam


Every blog gets spam comments, such is the way of the Internet. That’s why we have behind-the-scenes tools to prevent most of those spammy comments from every seeing the light of day. But I still see them on the backend, and one thing that’s boggled my mind is why one specific post receives 99.99% of all the spam we here at Frock Flicks get.

It’s this wee little blog post preview for the film Effie Gray, written in September 2014. The movie was supposed to come out in October of that year in the U.K. and soon after in the U.S., although that didn’t happen until April 2015 (and Kendra reviewed it the following year). Why does 170 words previewing a film about the wife of a Pre-Raphaelite painter attract ALL THE SPAM for our vast site with nearly three years of blog posts and countless photos? It’s so weird.

Effie Gray spam

Having worked in online publishing for ages now, I’m pretty familiar with spam spam spam bacon and spam. This specific type is comment spam, where the spammers are trying to get their links to whatever BS products into our comments by populating the username / email sign-in fields with links to crap (because links in the comment itself would get automatically caught; of course, these comments all got caught too and aren’t published, duh). Whether they’re trying to sell designer sunglasses, search engine optimization (ironically), clock parts, or LED flashlights, they gravitate towards Effie Gray. Other posts get the occasional spam comment, but most are deeply attracted to ol’ Effie, and weirdly none of the comments are for those classic Internet spammers like meds and sex. Yeah, it could always be worse!

Before the new year strikes, I’m going to attempt a few fixes to thwart the Effie Gray spammers. I just hope that won’t divert them to another part of our site. Maybe it’s better to leave that page as a spamtrap? Who knows…



About the author

Trystan L. Bass

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A self-described ElderGoth, Trystan has been haunting the internet since the early 1990s. Always passionate about costume, from everyday office wear to outrageous twisted historical creations, she has maintained some of the earliest online costuming-focused resources on the web. Her costuming adventures are chronicled on her website, TrystanCraft. She also ran a popular fashion blog, This Is CorpGoth, dedicated to her “office drag.”

5 Responses

  1. Susan Pola

    I hate spam. It’s a pain. Especially the ones trolling for money, telling you that you’ve won money – all the you have to do is provide them with personal data, etc.

  2. Susan Pola

    Anyone else notice how Effie’s side buns is reminiscent of the late Carrie Fisher’s Princess Leia Buns ?