For the past two days, a new BitTorrent-related weblog has been TrackBack-pinging an entry I wrote about BitTorrent and its inventor every time that the author posts a new item. (It’s been something like eight pings over that time period, from a site that seems to have started up four days ago.) None of the author’s posts have referenced mine, nor have any of them have addressed the issues (assymetric bandwidth usage, centralization of tracker servers, Wired’s piece on Cohen) that came up in my post — in short, none of them continued the conversation in a way that justified using TrackBack to generate a contextual relationship. Since it felt so much like spam, I went to the site, found the “Contact Us” link, and jotted off a quick email to ask for a little bit of explanation, but it bounced back as undeliverable. I then got another TrackBack this morning, so I added the site to my blacklist.

It’s this kind of TrackBack spam that I find particularly insidious — by being marginally related to the posts that are pinged, it’s more than likely to be either accepted or ignored (rather than deleted) by a lot of site authors, meaning that the spam attempt will succeed. To me, though, it’s the difference between going into a boat show to advertise breast enlargement pills and doing the same thing at a cancer conference — it might be a smidge closer to the intended audience, but it’s still miles and miles away.