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Mark Cuban effect: Blogger adds new features

Blogger has recently enabled Word Verification for user comments. This will require an extra step in the commenting process, which will deter automated comment spamming systems.

Though this is option will be off by default, blog publishers can switch it on from the Blogger Settings panel -> Comments tab.

All links posted in the Blogger comments automagically use the rel=nofollow tag, so they receive no PageRank boost.

If you've ever received a comment that looked like an advertisement or a random link to an unrelated site, then you've encountered comment spam. A lot of this is done automatically by software which can't pass the word verification, so enabling this option is a good way to prevent many such unwanted comments.

Is this announcement related to the recent warning by Mark Cuban which referred to Google's Blogger being the "worst culprit" for spam blogs, or splogs
Blogger is by far the worst offender. Google seems to be working hard to adjust their relevancy indexes to exclude splog from having influence on search rankings, but they dont seem to be doing anything more than removing reported splogs. Kind of like going after the zombies one at a time with a shovel. Can we get some help on this Google ?
Mark also hints at banning Blogger users from the Icerocket blog search engine. Is Google planning to make the process of creating blogs a little more complicated ? Or will it simply ignore Mark's warning. Only time will tell.

I feel Comment Word Verification is a nice feature to prevent robot spamming but it should be ON by default. People who aren't aware of this feature might never turn it on and spend hours deleting comment span.

Blogger has introduced another new feature called "Flag As Objectionable" and it's accessible via the Blogger Navbar. The "Flag?" button allows the blogging community to easily note questionable content, which in turn helps us take action when needed.

When a person visiting a blog clicks the "Flag?" button in the Blogger Navbar, it means they believe the content of the blog may be potentially offensive or illegal. tracks the number of times a blog has been flagged as objectionable and use this information to determine what action is needed. For spam blogs or sites engaging in illegal activity, Google could go upto removing content and deleting accounts when necessary.

Update: Featured at Slashdot.

Update: See a screenshot of a not so decent verification word generated by Google addurl page.