It’s time for Halloween again, a holiday custom made for cosplay if there ever was one, at least the way it’s celebrated in the United States. Even though most of us in the US associate Halloween with kids wearing costumes and going trick-or-treating for candy, the practice of wearing costumes is fairly recent historically. According to the Wikipedia entry on Halloween, wearing costumes or masks didn’t really occur until 1900. It was only in the 1950s that Halloween masks started being mass produced and the holiday changed to what we know it as today. In the 1990s companies started to commercialize Halloween even further and started selling more, and more varied, decorations in addition to costumes and masks.
Pretty much all of us have to deal with spam at some level. No matter how annoying the spammers are at any one level they get worse the more things you have to deal with. For example, just dealing with spam in E-mail can be a real pain if you don’t have good filtering and you have the misfortune of having a common username (even worse if your username is a common English word). If you’re a blogger you have to deal with comment and trackback spam as well. It doesn’t matter how popular your blog is or how much you post, as long as there’s a single post that the spambots can comment/trackback to they’ll eventually find you and start spamming your blog.
Spammers, and their spambots, view every single script they can find online as a target. Those of you who’ve had tagboards or shoutboxes will know exactly what I mean, spammers will try to see if the tagboard/shoutbox script can be abused to send their spam E-mails. You’ll end up with mail headers from their test attempts posted as comments. As annoying as they are though, there are some very smart people out there writing the bots that they use to attack us. In dealing with spam on the site, I’ve noticed that the patterns of attack are very different depending on the attacked service.
When I first set up my blog my original intentions were to review older anime series. I quickly found out that I didn’t have 1. the time, and 2. the desire to do proper reviews and so my blog has been rather disused. In fact I think most of my traffic of late is from spambots trying to post comment spam. After thinking about this for a while I’ve decided on a new direction for the blog. Since AnimeBlogger.net has grown so much since I started it back in February 2005, I think it’s important for there to be a way for me to communicate with the anime/manga/gaming blogging community in an “official” capacity as the founder/owner of AnimeBlogger.net. While official announcements about the site will be made to the site announcements mailing list and the forums (and eventually to the main site), here I’ll be able to provide further insight into the reasoning behind them. This doesn’t mean I’ll completely stop reviews, there may be the occasional one that I do, especially if there are cases where I’m requested to review something. It just means that my main focus now is not on doing reviews but on communication. That and doing more regular posts (every 6 to 12 months isn’t working too well. )
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