Lately my blog (among others) has become a magnet for an obnoxious group of sites that apparently sell plagiarized (plagiarizable?) term papers to students. They have actual humans, whom I envision working in a high-tech, third-world sweatshop, manually leaving comments and plugging in the correct CAPTCHA responses so that the links to their sites might get some search engine juice.
I have my blog set up so that each comment is e-mailed to me, so I can delete the [email protected] comments and block the IP addresses immediately. However, because they're always on old posts, I imagine many bloggers may not notice them.
It's also occurred to me that because many of the comments reference the content of the post, part of the already unethical service these sites offer might include scraping blog feeds and selling the content as essays. I don't know of any way to check whether or not that's happened to my blog, but I certainly hope not.
As someone who was a huge procrastinator in college but still managed to write a ridiculous number of essays and reports all by herself, I find it appalling that any student would buy papers. It's especially stupid because it's so easy for a professor to find out, as whatladder reported recently. Lazy, unethical and thoughtless: there's the bottom of the next generation's barrel for you.
That's my latest rant. I promise I'll write about something more fun and positive next time.