When someone asks me through an instant message if I want to see their web cam, I put them on "ignore" and report them as spam. But now the bots try posing as long lost friends. Tonight, I found an offline message that read "Are you there?" I accidently deleted that, but here is the conversation that follows.
Robert Enders (6/18/2008 11:20:50 PM): Are you a bot>
kirk_dawson (6/18/2008 11:20:56 PM): Hey ipfwpolyscimajor
Robert Enders (6/18/2008 11:21:07 PM): Answer my question
kirk_dawson (6/18/2008 11:21:14 PM): do u remember me?
Robert Enders (6/18/2008 11:21:15 PM): Are you a bot?
kirk_dawson (6/18/2008 11:21:22 PM): it's me Lisa!
Robert Enders (6/18/2008 11:21:33 PM): You have just failed the Turing test.
kirk_dawson (6/18/2008 11:21:38 PM): i finally got my LIVE private CAM set up i'm so nervous
Even though I was suspicious that this was a bot, (None of my friends call me "ipfwpolyscimajor") I took the time to talk to it in order to ensure that I wasn't putting an actual friend on my ignore list. The simplest way to tell if someone is a spambot, is to simply ask. A human would simply deny it, and may even get offended. A spambot would proceed to tell you about its private webcam.