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Is Forum Spamming A Waste of Time?


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#1 BANNED_SPAMMER

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 02:32 AM

<removed self promotion>
<meta name="keyphrases" content="affiliate marketing in India; Pay per click management; comparison shopping; compare India; compare shopping in India; digital advertising India; digital advertising in India; ecommerce; online shopping in india; publisher solutions; agency work in India; affiliates; PPC management for adwords; overture; Miva; Mirago; Search123; Kanoodle; email marketing; banner advertising; compare and shop; compare gifts; affiliate network; manage PPC; manager pay per click; digital advertisement management; Cost per acquisition; lead generation; advertisers; affiliates; publishers; merchants; paid search; search engine optimization; SEO; SEM; CPA; CPC; PPC

#2 projectphp

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 03:24 AM

We get a lot of these sorts of posts (10 or so a day), and I thought, for once, it might be nice to share :huh:.

Anyway, I thought it might generate some discussion.

Firstly, I wanted to point out that adding metadata to a forum won't work, especailly when that metadata is <meta name="keyphrases".

Secondly, by the time I have removed the bit where you can find their website and their "marketing material" (and I use that term as lightly as I can) this thread had lasted less than 15 minutes and had received exactly 5 page views.

Does anyone think that this sort of marketing has any potential to work, or indeed is worth the effort? I understand email spam, as chances are people do read that, and the response rate required is so very small, but forum spam?

Seems to me the eyeball spam (where you actually want to get people to read your drivel) won't work, as a forums busy enough to generate enough eyeballs will most likely be well moderated. And any SEO benefit has the same problem, as any forum with enough weight to be of benefit will, again, be moderated enough that, eventually, the spam will be caught and deleted.

What does everyone else think?

#3 JohnMu

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 03:50 AM

My forum used to attract spam-registrations - "people" (bots) signing up (even with a captcha) with random names and their websites. I have since modified my phpBB to block all registrations that specify a website. I used to have about 10 a day, now none :-)

I doubt those postings were meant for "human" consumption but rather for search engines. The posters are just too dumb to recognize that it doesn't work here (or probably anywhere else where the postings are removed quick enough) ... sometimes I feel like leaving their company / website names in the postings, and working to get those postings ranking higher than their sites. :huh:

If it really "worked" (ie ROI >0) then the more profitible industries would be doing it (trying it) all the time. Since they aren't, I will assume that it's just small-time guys desperate to do anything to get 1-2 visitors, who will probably not convert anyway. Almost makes you feel sorry for them. NOT.

John

PS since you guys find these postings fast enough, should we report them to you or just let you handle it? I've never seen one last more than an hour or two, you're quick :)

What bothers me more are these types of postings:

r57ipbxplhohohoeval(include(chr(199).chr(216).chr(116). (...) ));

... people trying to hack the forums .... :(



What bothers me more are these types of postings:

r57ipbxplhohohoeval(include(chr(199).chr(216).chr(116). (...) ));

... people trying to hack the forums .... :(



(huh? how did that work? it just added to my previous posting but didn't mark it as an edit? :))

#4 yannis

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 03:59 AM

ProjectPhp I am one of those that actually now and then had a view of spam that came to the forums. The other day there were about two or three with mobile phone prices and yesterday for a very short while one about viet nam or so.

Well firstly just to thank you and all the other mods and admins for being vigilant and for cleaning up the forum for us.

As to your query I personally think that the search engines have the right algorithms to totally discount such links. They might not have had them a year ago but they do now. They should also set up an automated way to report forum spam, so that they can permanently delete all these websites from their index and save everyone's time!

PS Actually just saw one now uptly named MustDie!!!

Edited by yannis, 13 June 2006 - 04:03 AM.


#5 A.N.Onym

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 04:58 AM

To me, this question is a rhetorical one.
Spamming anything is less productive than constructive work.
Constructive work lasts for ages and one-time spam only generates a little wave of traffic.

However, I understand why spamming is attractive in the eyes of someone without time and brains to realize that spamming doesn't work.

Edited by A.N.Onym, 13 June 2006 - 04:58 AM.


#6 Guest_joedolson_*

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 05:31 AM

Of course, when one considers that the so-called "businesses" which a lot of spam is intended to drive traffic to, the ephemeral nature of these methods is perfectly well adapted. The marketing has the lifespan of a bacteria, spreads like a disease, and then eventually withers and dies.

Oh, what a cute analogy...

I suspect that the number of authentic businesses which get caught up in spamming along the lines of forum spam and comment spam is quite small - most of these seem to be along the lines of made-for-adsense sites, crappy affiliate marketing scams, etc. The businesses themselves only exist to earn money without creating a sincere resource or product, so what's the practical relevance of trying to build authentic marketing relationships?

You can only really build relationships if you actually intend to create a business.

I agree that spamming will only create a small, temporary wave of traffic - but that's all that these sites need.

I think that's one of the core factors defining good marketing techniques - good marketing will support and build your business. A serious business concern MUST use marketing methods which will build trust and a brand identity - but a junk business doesn't need to be concerned about this. For the short life span of their business, anything which will bring traffic is fine as long as the cost is low enough.

#7 Respree

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 06:29 AM

PS since you guys find these postings fast enough, should we report them to you or just let you handle it? I've never seen one last more than an hour or two, you're quick.


The forum software provides a link to easily report spam (i.e. Report button). While we appreciate the efforts of those who report spam, we are lucky to have enough moderators from around the world, which give us the benefit of at least one of two of them being on 'duty' at all times. We've become extraordinarily adept at spotting spam, and taking quick and decisive action. So to answer your question, it is not necessary to report spammy posts -- we'll catch them.

Afterthought afterthoughtHowever, in the rare event that one should slip by us, of course, by all means, please report it. :huh:

Edited by Respree, 13 June 2006 - 10:45 PM.


#8 cre8pc

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 12:35 PM

It sometimes feels like a game, to see who can catch the spammer first :)

I stalk them. We get notified everytime someone joins the forums as a new member, and I got into the habit of waiting for awhile to see what they post. The spammers will shoot off their crap immediately, so it's simple to lie in the forum bushes and wait for them to shoot themselves in the feet.

#9 canadianchick

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 01:25 PM

I stalk them. We get notified everytime someone joins the forums as a new member, and I got into the habit of waiting for awhile to see what they post. The spammers will shoot off their crap immediately, so it's simple to lie in the forum bushes and wait for them to shoot themselves in the feet.


:ph34r:

:)


Thanks for the laugh. I needed that! :D Great mental image you gave me, there.

#10 A.N.Onym

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 08:20 PM

Hmm I guess running a forum is more fun than I suspected..hunting spammers and all that ;) :ph34r:

#11 sanity

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 09:40 PM

Kim Krause Berg AKA The Spam Huntress. ;)

#12 MaryKrysia

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 10:23 PM

I stalk them. We get notified everytime someone joins the forums as a new member, and I got into the habit of waiting for awhile to see what they post. The spammers will shoot off their crap immediately, so it's simple to lie in the forum bushes and wait for them to shoot themselves in the feet.

;)

I love it. Spam Hunters Unite and hunt down those dasterdly spammers! Awesome.

Thank you, projectphp, for an eye-opening post. The forum moderators must do an good job of eliminating this stuff as I rarely get a glimpse of it. :applause:

Mary

#13 sanity

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 10:46 PM

A lot of posts get reported by members too which is a big help. We're a great team. :applause:

#14 bragadocchio

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Posted 13 June 2006 - 10:46 PM

Unfortunately, Spam Huntress is already taken.

Maybe we could invite her over for some tips.

This is an interesting page from her site, the Spam Huntress Wiki:

http://spamhuntress.com/wiki/Main_Page

#15 Juliette

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Posted 14 June 2006 - 02:44 AM

:rofl:

That's definitely made my morning - thank you to all of you :).

Unfortunately, Spam Huntress is already taken.



I do like the mental imagery that it provoke though - thinking of creating my own forum just so i can hunt spammers... :)

#16 JohnMu

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Posted 14 June 2006 - 03:10 AM

The Spam Huntress is always a great read, highly recommended!

Kim, can you recognize the spammers before they post? Perhaps your intuition could be integrated in the software to put them on a 2 day probation :)

John

#17 projectphp

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Posted 14 June 2006 - 07:24 PM

Hehehe. usually, usernames like adman, or mobile_phone_222 give ti away :)

It still amazes me that the best idea people come up with is this sort of spamming. Surely, there are more usfeul ways to go?

#18 A.N.Onym

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Posted 14 June 2006 - 07:28 PM

The best way to spend one's time, when working on a site, is to write quality content.
Another way is to improve its usability and search engine friendliness.

In the end, I am sure, spamming is less efficient than working on the site. Wonder why so (often) brilliant folks like spammers don't understand it.

#19 cre8pc

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Posted 14 June 2006 - 07:29 PM

Kim, can you recognize the spammers before they post? Perhaps your intuition could be integrated in the software to put them on a 2 day probation



Yes! I just did one. Saw him/her arrive and stalked and then the moment they sent the spam post, I killed it and banned them. It's like road rage, only I never do that. I just shoot spam posts :)

And, as Michael says, it's always easy to spot them. The names they choose and their domains and/or email addresses nearly always give them away as soon as they arrive.

#20 A.N.Onym

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Posted 14 June 2006 - 07:42 PM

I suppose a flash game "Admin on Guard: Spam Hunter" might make some buzz among most forum owners and moderators :)
The real forum is better, though, I suspect :)

#21 Juliette

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Posted 15 June 2006 - 03:10 AM

It just makes such a change to come into a forum - on a regular basis - and not have to worry that you're going to be confronted with ads for all sorts of strange things. The spam hunting should become a competition where the person who identifies and gets rid of the most spam and spammers gets the title of "Spam hunter extraordinaire" - or even have quick draw prizes for the person to get rid of spam and a spammer fastest.

Just some silly ideas originating form my silly mood today... Sorry



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