Loyal readers of this space will recall that a few weeks ago I had my first instance of a chunk of my blog being copied and pasted onto somebody else’s website. And now, dear readers, The Weather Report has experienced its first spam incident. And not just any spam incident either, oh no.
Infuriating enough are those that read something along the lines of: “Hi. My name is […] and I am an autistic child. My father has set up a blog for me and I was hoping you would come and visit…” blabla. But these pale next to the kind of spam received this evening.
It appeared harmless enough: simply a link to a certain Icelandic English-language publication that happened to have written an editorial-type-thing on a subject that I had mentioned in my blog. In other words, a certain individual had simply pasted the link to his version of the story into my comments box. Without so much as including a greeting, or any other comment. Clearly being above such trivialities as good spam manners.
NOW WHAT IS PARTICULARLY HILARIOUS IS…
That this particular publication and I have a wee bit of a history. What happened, precisely, is this: I picked up their [free] publication one day [in my pre-blog life] and saw that they were working to recruit English-language writers. Seems they needed people to review movies, plays, n’stuff, but were too alternative and underground and poverty-stricken to pay any money.
‘Hell, I can do that!’ thought I, ‘free tickets to the movies, write a snappy review [in line with their über-hip and snappy style] – everybody wins!’ So I fire off a missive to the editor. He replies almost instantly, albeit without a greeting, just a gruff line of ‘Whathaveyoudonebefore’… kind of crapola. So I tell him and a few emails are exchanged and he asks me for a sample review and I send him one and after reading that he sends another message saying he thinks I should get my butt down to their offices ASAP so we can talk. And all this he manages to do without ever deigning to write a greeting in his email and, as I recall, no salutation, either.
Off I go to meet with this person, who it must be said appeared somewhat challenged in the social graces as he 1) did not offer me a seat 2) mumbled into his shirt 3) never once met my eyes 4) proceeded immediately to critique my sample review, which he wished were more like the reviews he wrote for a third publication. He had to concede, though, that it was ‘quite good’. [Which it was]. [But I am not averse to having my work critiqued and kept my mind wide-open as to possible improvements to my writing style]. [But I digress]. So he pulled out two movie tickets and mumbled something about me going to see a movie, any movie, as long as it was opening this weekend, and then to send him the review.
Which I did. The movie was A Shark Tale. The review was the exact right length [300 words as I recall – and, I mean, what a feat to write anything in 300 words…] and it was quite witty and fun and just as he would have liked it I thought, so off it went to him.
And I received no reply. Not a one. Not a confirmation of receipt, not a ‘this review is crap can you please write another one’, nada. It was as though my review had been swallowed up by a big black cyberspace hole.
So I thought, Pah! Let them stew in their own ridiculousness. I mean, come on, they were getting the bloody review for free. You’d have thought they could have at least had the manners to say ‘thank you’.
And then, about three weeks later, an email arrives.
No greeting. Just a RE: Shark Tale in the subject line, with the words ‘Not bad. Do you want to go again this weekend?’
Now, to my credit, I did not write ‘Why don’t you go fuck yourself you socially-inept little wiener!’ but simply, ‘No thank you.’ ‘Cause I have manners. However, now that they’re spamming my frigging blog, they are hereby sent the virtual finger. And the other one, too. And advised that any spams or comments – with or without greeting – will henceforth be deleted without delay, as has already been done with their ill-advised attempt this evening.
On the other hand, is lovely. Mild and still, temps currently 4°C in the capital, no wind. Sunrise was at 8.49 and sunset at 18.34.