SpamLookup testing

Over the weekend I installed Brad Choate’s SpamLookup Movable Type plugin after rave reviews. So far I have had mixed results.

SpamLookup discards TrackBack pings from TypePad and other weblog authoring tools by default as the server IP address may not match the IP address of the authoring tool. In the case of TypePad, a recent ping came from and not the expected TypePad domain IP address of

It’s more than a bit comical that Six Apart code discards a post from a Six Apart property by default. (not sure what intellectual property rights Six Apart provides employees like Brad but Brad also codes the Movable Type core)

If you have attempted to send a TrackBack and failed, sorry about that, but I am living on the bleeding edge to keep the bad pings away. TrackBacks can not be moderated in the current build of MTLookup so your pings may be discarded. I see your pings in my logs and I know how to add your ping manually when I find a moment.

Update: Brad mentions in the comments that moderation of TrackBacks is currently supported if MT-Moderate is installed.


Commentary on "SpamLookup testing":

  1. Jeff Clavier on wrote:

    I was about to send you a note mentioning that I was not able to trackback your post. Understand why now (since I am a typepad user).

  2. Randy Charles Morin on wrote:

    I implemented an algorithm where I actually go to the trackback URL and make certain they are actually linking to me. This seems to have eliminated trackback SPAM, from what I can tell, in the first few hours. The algorithm your using seems like overkill and would kill my trackbacks too because my trackback mechanism and blog are located at different IPs. Mind you, I don’t send trackbacks too often since they trackback SPAM got out of control.

  3. Brad Choate on wrote:

    Would you mind double-checking the setting on the “TrackBack Spam” configuration page? And could you check the log message — did it really “Block” or did it moderate? If it did select to moderate, then try the nightly build; the moderated pings weren’t being saved as they should have.

    In any case, the defaults should allow the case you describe here. What follows is a text matrix the result of testing IPs with varying distances using the defaults I shipped SpamLookup with (note that “moderate” will only be applied if you also have MT-Moderate installed, falling back to ignoring the distance since it didn’t achive the block threshold). A result of “ignored” means that the ping continues to be tested; while a result of “block” or “moderate” would short circuit further tests. =>; distance is 0 — ignored =>; distance is 1 — ignored =>; distance is 2 — moderate =>; distance is 3 — blocked =>; distance is 4 — blocked =>; distance is 2 — moderate =>; distance is 3 — blocked =>; distance is 4 — blocked =>; distance is 3 — blocked =>; distance is 4 — blocked =>; distance is 4 — blocked =>; distance is 4 — blocked =>; distance is 4 — blocked =>; distance is 3 — blocked

    Finally, let me just stress that this is a beta release. And, perhaps more importantly– this is not Six Apart code. It was not released by Six Apart. It is not supported by Six Apart. It is not under Six Apart’s direction.

  4. Niall Kennedy on wrote:

    pingip_block was set to 3 (Very Distant), the “safe default.” I have since upped the setting to 4 (No Relationship). I installed the nightly build before my earlier post but just installed MT-Moderate for the first time. I looked inside the code, saw the final else statement with the moderation is not supported comment and thought it was a to-do.

    The good pings were moderated while the bad pings were properly being blocked.

    I will tweak some more when I am at home with a dual display. Thank you for taking the time to leave an extended comment! Google gave betas a bad name, but I realize I am taking risks playing with your code. Just wanted to let my users know I see their ping and I will fix it later.

  5. Niall Kennedy on wrote:

    Under California law all Brad’s plugin code belongs to Six Apart but as I stated in my original post Six Apart may have different intellectual property agreements with its employees or a special arrangement with Brad to allow an MIT license to apply to the plugin code.

    I sent an e-mail to Six Apart asking for more information regarding the standard intellectual property rights of Six Apart developers. I will post the result of the inquiry if Six Apart responds and allows republication.