Diary notes

posted in: Housekeeping 3

I was looking at the statistics of this diary (which is really a blog) built-into the FAD website and I realised that we have started to develop quite a community of people leaving comments on posts and sharing their knowledge and memories. At the time of this writing there had been 482 comments which is pretty good. I think, for a small local history website.

There are, of course, many more legitimate visitors to the site who do not contribute to any discussion and that’s fine too. The real surprise for me, however, was to discover just how many visitors there have been who have tried to contribute to discussions with comments designed to advertise themselves or their products.

The figures show that 1833 SPAM comments were discarded after the system detected that they had been submitted automatically by robots (computer programs) and there have been more than 15000 that passed the first test but which the system tagged as suspicious and filed in a separate queue for me for checking.

A percentage of them are blatant advertising but most pretend to be legitimate comments but include links to the advertiser’s website. These can be spotted a mile away because they are usually written by illiterates and designed to be used no matter what the subject of the blog post is. Messages like:

you’re in point of fact a excellent webmaster. The site loading pace is amazing. It kind of feels that you are doing any unique trick. Furthermore, The contents are masterpiece. you’ve done a fantastic job on this matter!

The message contained a link to site that sells boots! I do agree with the masterpiece comment though….    😉

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3 Responses

  1. Rodney
    | Reply

    This comment is about your banner above. Just to the left of the ‘ D’ of Durban is the face of a little boy. I think that this is the same little boy who featured in a newspaper article about 50 years ago (I can’t remember now if it was the Mercury or The Daily News). The article was, I think, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the opening of the City Hall buildings. It mentioned the sculptor by name (which I have also now forgotten) and said how he had to do most of the ornamentation in cement as the use of stone would have been too costly. It also commented on how well the concrete statues had stood up to half a century of Durban weather. To get back to the little boy, he, according to the article, was the toddler son of the sculptor who was quite happy to pose in the nude for his father. I wonder if anyone else knows about this aspect of the construction of the City Hall and can verify this. The little boy must be about 100 now if he is still about.

    • Gerald Buttigieg

      Hi Rodney
      In Allan Jackson’s 3rd Edition of Facts about Durban, there is a section about the very cherubs you mention. The theory is that the cherubs were modelled on the infant George Hollis who was the son of one of the partners of the firm that undertook the building of the City Hall, Cornelius and Hollis. George Hollis in later life became the Mayor of Durban. The jury is still out if this is true or not.

  2. Ivor Daniel
    | Reply

    The date of the photograph of the old Durban Station site is correctly dated as 1981/82 as this when the road works for Walnut Road & Commercial Road extension were implemented. The old station ceased operation in approximately 1980.The lower portion of the photograph is the old Goal site later the site of the International Convention Centre – work started on site for demolition in 1983. Completed 1989.

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