Cognitive Psychology

From the Spam File: In Praise of Praise

It is a science fact cats don’t love you. Your dog loves you. Your dog loves you like you love your children, parents, spouse. But, cats… well… they like you, they appreciate you, okay, they tolerate you. Seriously, science fact.

The thing about cats is, though, the things they do seem like love to us: they rub up against you, they love you to pet them, they purr, they lay on you. And, it fools your brain into thinking that they love you. It is as good as the real McCoy. Maybe even better.

I keep up with the blog. I check comments daily. I answer everyone. I don’t approve them all, but answer them, and that is a pain in the ass to answer a comment and then unapprove it. You have to find it in the comment queue. But I do it. I empty the spam folder and the trash folder — if a commenter has been blocked why do they show up in the trash folder? Seriously? Anywho, I keep those folders empty.

I let the spam build up to ten to twenty before I go through it. I look at each one. I do. I’ve found comments from genuine bone fide readers sitting in that muck! And, that is really a pain, because you have two options: delete or approve. Once it is approved it joins the queue organized by date. You have to go find it. Man, that is a pain.

Today, I checked the spam folder and was surprised to see it had 113! One hundred thirteen! One hundred thirteen messages in it! Where did they come from? I’ve been blogging all weekend. Well, the good folks over at extraproxy were also busy, I guess, because a hun’erd ten of them were from them! One was from Barb over at the View from a Drawbridge! How did that happen? Anywho. Here, if you haven’t seen the spam posts from extraproxy — Just what the fuck is an extra proxy, anyway? Why would I want one if you can even have one, and what do they want me to do? I don’t know. All this new fangled Interweb stuff is just too new and too fangled for me sometimes.

Still, their spam messages are my favorite! Hands down. No body spams better out there. They are so good, I’ve just got to share a few with you:

Isn’t that a lovely message to receive? My own mother never said anything so nice to me about Ye Olde Blogge or anything else I’ve ever done, except for Ma Belle Femme. She really did love my wife.

This is just like that old handwriting personality test where everyone gets the same response but doesn’t realize and 99% of the sample think they’ve been described. But, seriously if this message hadn’t appeared like twenty times in the one hundred thirteen spam comments from them, I might’ve thought it was sincerely written to me personally. Equally educative and amusing. That describes Ye Olde Blogge to a tee! I may have to start an endorsement page.

Your style is unique! Again, it goes straight to this old snarky, sarcasticky, profaney, curmudgeonly heart.

Forwarded to a co-worker and got a free lunch out of it! Ha ha! That is imaginative! Who wouldn’t be happy about having written a blog post so good that it inspired a free lunch?

Sweet. Short. To the point. Who doesn’t like direct praise like that.

This one ladles on the praise — I love the awkwardly phrased, I saved as a favorite it to my bookmark webpage list. They may as well have called it my weblog, which a few have in the past. I do have a soft spot for ESL. But, finally one with a call to action as they call it in the biz: check my site and tell me how you feel. That even uses psychology! Reciprocation.

Here’s a grab of one of the six pages of spam messages from these folks just to give you a sense of what it looks like and the overwhelming nature of reading these one after another. Seriously, it brought a tear my eye. It was overwhelming. Just like having your purring cat in your lap as you watch the TV.

If this doesn’t inspire you to leave a sweet comment at the end of every blog post you’ll ever read, I don’t know what will. Now, you gotta tell me which is your favorite and that your cat really does love you and all of that. Seriously, what do you think about all this?

If you enjoyed reading all of these lovely spammy messages, please let me know in a warmer kinder way than just another tick on the visitor counter:

  • Leave a comment: I do love the comments and answer everyone. You gotta have something to say about spam, extraproxies, and cats, right?
  • Like the post: Even if you’ve never liked any of Ye Olde Blogge’s posts or any blog post at all ever, this one is calling out to be liked, right?
  • Rate the post: Good, bad, or ugly, you can let me know by giving this post a stellar five-star rating using the star buttons just below the title.
  • Share on social media: Spam is the dirty little not-so-secret secret of the Interwebs. No one reads it. No one talks about it. Don’t you think your friends and followers would like to KNOW? Use the social media share buttons after the post.
  • Join the email list: There are literally a dozen, maybe, people who probably think they’re getting spammed by Ye Olde Blogge a couple times a week, but they aren’t. They asked for it, and you can, too! Just add your email below.

Image Attribution

“Evil Cat” by Sкʏʟᴇʀ is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

15 replies »

    • Still very popular in Asia, especially South Korea, where you can buy “gift” packs of a half dozen tins of spam and other associated products like crackers.



  1. When did I last look in the spam folder? I don’t remember. The idea that there might be some extravagant praise sitting there is encouraging. The cat might purr instead of scratch or cough up a hair ball.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Howdy Bob!

      I’ve never liked the little notification thingees that so many social media sites use to tell you that someone somewhere somehow has responded to something you’ve done on the site. I’m fairly obsessive about keeping those things at zero. That extends to the spam folder and the trash. I have to admit, the extraproxy folks have my curiosity up. They’ve stepped up their game on the positive messaging, I’ve noticed. It must be a new spam campaign. Part of me wonders if they get a better response rate when using this kind of approach.


      Liked by 1 person

      • I’m guessing that they do get a better response. Praise feels good, gets all those warm and fuzzy neurotransmitters flowing, addictive. Of course, it also runs into our unworthiness issues and we ask, “What to they want?”

        Liked by 1 person

        • Hahaha! Like I said, I’m not even sure what an extraproxy is. I don’t even know if it is something you buy. But, I know I’m not ever clicking on that link to find out anything about it or them.

          I know there is research on spammers and how many spam messages you have to send out to get x number of replies and of those replies how many actually make the spammer money, so you get a calculation of this many messages equals this much money. The returns on the practice have been diminishing. This kind of friendly message probably allows them to make money — however it is they make money on them — by increasing the number of clicks.

          One of the things I don’t get is why anyone would open the link after seeing a hundred messages from the same website all purporting to be from different people. I literally got that hundred in the course of one or two days. I wish there were someone I could ask, but I don’t trust them enough to ask. I just don’t have the resources to waste on malware and adware and spyware that likely comes from a visit from those sites.


          Liked by 1 person

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