The "best written spam," according to Akismet, comes from South-East Asia. As the Akismet team notes, SEO firms will often hire these low-paid workers and set them up to work out of Internet cafes and local universities.
Akismet: "The 'best written spam' comes from South-East Asia."
Detecting Human-Posted Spam is Hard
We have definitely seen this increase in human-posted spam here at ReadWriteWeb over the last two years or so. While early comment spam was easily detectable because it had nothing to do with the actual post, we now have to take a closer look at all the links our commenters use in their personal profiles in order to weed out the spammers. Often, comments that look perfectly legit will include a link to a Viagra or SEO site in the profile link.
What About Regular Spam?
Besides the rise of human-powered spam, traditional spam is still going strong as well. Akismet notes that "old-fashioned" pill, porn and malware spam still tends to originate from Eastern Europe and the Russian Federation. Spammers there still operate huge networks of malware-infected machines that run spambots.
According to Akismet, the number of fake blog networks on services like Blogspot, Weebly, Tumblr, Ning and WordPress is also becoming more frequent and more highly organized. Instead of just abusing other people's blogs, these spammers just create their own blog networks.
Other forms of blog-related spam that are on the rise are auto-blog pingbacks from people using auto-blogging plugins (mostly for WordPress sites), as well as hijacked blogs and wikis.
From Porn and Pills to Pet Food and Roofing
Akismet also notes that while early blog spammers used to focus on the traditional (and highly lucrative) niches around pornography, pills and malware, today's spammers are often more interested in search engine optimization than hawking fake Viagra. Because of this, modern blog spam often includes links to "dentists, roofing and pet food."