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Increase Of Spam Topics
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36 posts in this topic

Anyone else notice we have been getting more spammers on the board lately?

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The problem is a lot worse on most other boards. This kind of thing happens, particularly as boards become more popular and get more traffic. Obviously the spammers want to get their message out to a larger audience, so we become a bigger target.

That said, the moderation team here is usually pretty quick to respond to this sort of thing. The numerous spam topics that were posted this morning were removed in about 20 minutes.

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I notice they seem to come in bunches! I "hid" the ones I came across until Scott can delete them.

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I haven't noticed any at all. You guys must be doing a great job. Thanks for keeping the board clean and tidy for us. :)

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They are doing a great job. Whenever I see a topic like that I hit the report button.

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Hello Everyone,

Spam will always be a problem for any board that has a lot of users, like this one. Many users here have no idea just how often this board gets spammed because the moderators do such a great job--thank you moderators!

On a side note I've been criticized (see below) for creating strict rules that don't allow people to promote their own sites here even if they are free and are related to celiac disease (currently people who want to do this are restricted to listing their personal sites only within their Personal Profile area, and they can't do this in posts). I believe that allowing personal site promotion here, even if it is celiac disease related, would quickly bring down the quality of this board. Trust me, it would take no time at all for 1 in 10 or even 1 in 5 posts to become personal promotions that try to drive people to their own sites and/or products.

Obviously this does not mean that users cannot post info about companies and products, including links--I encourage this because sharing information is what this board is about--the rule applies only to self-promotion and covers those who directly promote their own sites, businesses, products, services, etc.

Anyway--some people obviously don't appreciate all we do here with regard to spam and trying to improve the user experience--like this person who was warned for creating an account, agreeing to follow our rules, then breaking them with several posts in a row trying to drive people to her personal blog (please don't do this). We simply gave this person a warning and didn't ban them, and we got this response (yes, they were banned after this attack!):

You people are a joke of an organization if you won't allow me to help other people with food allergies. Obviously you are "in it" for personal profit and gain rather than for humanitarian reasons. So much for "spreading the word" and helping to "diagnose the disease"...you see $ instead. It is too bad people like you exist...the world would be a much better place without you.

As for my "offensive improper post" that "violates rules"...take it and shove it up your gluten-free, money making *#$! I won't be back to your site ever. Nor will I ever mention it again. I will promptly be removing it from my list of "favorite links" on both my personal computer and on my "offensive web site".

Yes, we do have advertising here, and it is the advertisers who help pay the cost of all this, so the proper way for anyone who wants to promote something here is to use our existing advertising to do it and help support the board:

http://www.celiac.com/advertising.html

Take care,

Scott

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Scott, I think you guys do a great job of keeping the spam down. And sometimes it does seem all of a sudden we have two or three different ones but it never fails that the next time I come on in the same day they are gone. You do a great job expecially considering you allow educational and company nonspam links in the post. If I am not mistaken that means you have to look at them directly to tell which ones to remove. The mods do a great job of hiding things when needed also until they can be removed. I know one time I was extremely grateful for that, and still am.

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While I don't understand and don't always agree with the rules of boards, the bottom line is that I am a USER and not the OWNER or even a MEMBER-such as someone with "voting" rights. I respect Scott's rules, if for no other reason, because this is HIS board, that he allows us to use. And I think that the mods do a WONDERFUL job!! Good work all :)

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I can second tiffjake's remarks: Scott's boards, Scott's rules. I was recently 'warned' for spamming. The mods were VERY quick in responding and removing the post and offered a valid explanation.

That being said, I don't particularly understand why there is not a specific thread/sub-forum where people can go here to "promote" i.e., provide useful free websites/blogs for celiacs.

Oh well :) This forum provides excellent people and information nonetheless.

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Ok. This is probably the stupidest question ever, but could someone better explain spamming? I just read the forum guidelines and I'm not sure I get it. If someone posts a question about a product and I answer it and then a few weeks later someone posts a similar question and I answer that with the same response is that spamming?

Thanks.

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Spamming is when someone comes on to a forum and posts several messages in a row about nothing. An example the other morning we had a person come on and leave 2-3 posts and the topic names were Free NY Giants Hat. When you clicked on the topic you had a little sentence and a website link.

A good way to spot a spammer/spam topic is when you see the post, when you see the members ID who posted it, it says new Member and there might only be 1-2 posts ever made by that person. None of the posts are legit posts. Hope that helps.

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Thanks for clearing that up. :)

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Anytime. It took me a few minutes to explain in a way not to confuse. Sometimes it sounds right in my head but is confusing to everyone around me :)

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Nice explanation of spam, Amanda :D

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Either my case is the exception, or that is not how spamming is defined for these boards.

My case: I've made more than 1-2 posts and none of them were "promoting" anything. I've been here for a few months now too. It's good to check those posts before assuming a new member is a spammer.

Back to my case: I made 1 (relevant) post w/ one link and a paragraph description.

I did not spam this post anywhere else. Yet my post was considered spam and deleted. Scott's board, Scott's rules. Fair enough - but spam is not limited to multiple irrelevant posts made by new members. It applies to all of us:) .. or does it?

I did a few searches and came up with a bunch of links, some below:

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...aded&start=

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...mp;#entry308248

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...aded&start=

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion....php/t9556.html

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion...php/t15958.html

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion...php/t21542.html

There seems to be a fine line. Some links had other people recommending certain sites and some had website owners recommending ("promoting") their own sites.

I hope I am not accused of 'spamming'/ "promoting" those websites in those links - I've no affiliation :)

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Either my case is the exception, or that is not how spamming is defined for these boards.

My case: I've made more than 1-2 posts and none of them were "promoting" anything. I've been here for a few months now too. It's good to check those posts before assuming a new member is a spammer.

Back to my case: I made 1 (relevant) post w/ one link and a paragraph description.

I did not spam this post anywhere else. Yet my post was considered spam and deleted. Scott's board, Scott's rules. Fair enough - but spam is not limited to multiple irrelevant posts made by new members. It applies to all of us:) .. or does it?

I did a few searches and came up with a bunch of links, some below:

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...aded&start=

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...mp;#entry308248

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...aded&start=

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion....php/t9556.html

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion...php/t15958.html

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion...php/t21542.html

There seems to be a fine line. Some links had other people recommending certain sites and some had website owners recommending ("promoting") their own sites.

I hope I am not accused of 'spamming'/ "promoting" those websites in those links - I've no affiliation :)

Cindy,

Since you have brought up the subject.....You were notified through a PM, that the Board Rules state that personal website and blogs are not to be placed on the post page, but, may be displayed on your Personal Profile Page. Your post was set on invisible pending administrative review.

No one, to my knowledge suggested that you were a spammer.

I looked at your website (on your Personal Profile Page) and you have listed several recipes that I would love to try and the presentation is wonderful.

I hope that you will continue to join us. And, a belated birthday to you.

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Either my case is the exception, or that is not how spamming is defined for these boards.

My case: I've made more than 1-2 posts and none of them were "promoting" anything. I've been here for a few months now too. It's good to check those posts before assuming a new member is a spammer.

Back to my case: I made 1 (relevant) post w/ one link and a paragraph description.

I did not spam this post anywhere else. Yet my post was considered spam and deleted. Scott's board, Scott's rules. Fair enough - but spam is not limited to multiple irrelevant posts made by new members. It applies to all of us:) .. or does it?

I did a few searches and came up with a bunch of links, some below:

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...aded&start=

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...mp;#entry308248

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/index.php?s...aded&start=

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion....php/t9556.html

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion...php/t15958.html

http://www.glutenfreeforum.com/lofiversion...php/t21542.html

There seems to be a fine line. Some links had other people recommending certain sites and some had website owners recommending ("promoting") their own sites.

I hope I am not accused of 'spamming'/ "promoting" those websites in those links - I've no affiliation :)

Cindy Lou-

In the first example you listed, that is a very common mistake/rule break here at celiac.com people post a link to their own blog. This is against the board rules. It seems that we must have missed that post (it DOES happen, we are only human volunteers). If you look at the board rules it states that you/anyone is not allowed to promote their own websites. The posting of a link to your website/blog would be in violation of that rule. Therefore people get a warning for that.

Posting a link to a website that you are not affiliated with is fine. For example you found an awesome brownie recipe on allrecipes.com and wanted to share it......post the link...no violation no foul.

I hope that helps to clear up some of your confusion.

-Jessica :rolleyes:

a celiac.com moderator

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I don't think anyone ever thought you were a Spammer, Cindy. It was an honest mistake. I hope you will still continue to post and share your knowledge and really great sounding recipies with us. :)

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Thanks everyone for the quick clarification.

The conclusion is then: my post was removed because it violated forum rules designed to limit promotional spam. This does not imply that my post was spam. It only implies that I should read forum rules more carefully! :)

Of course I won't be leaving these forums. The information here is priceless and the moderators are exceptional at maintaining the integrity of the site.

A specific thread/sub-forum where people can promote their own blogs/websites would be nice, but I don't know how feasible it would be to moderate. Anyway, my two cents :P

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You are correct, Cindy, no one ever considered your posts spam. I'm glad you'll continue to be a part of the forum :)

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If you are not sure, here are the board rules on spamming:

2. Do not promote your own business, Web site or products--even if they offer free services. The proper place to post your Web site, business or other services is in your profile, not in your signature block or in posts.

3. Do not spam the boards (i.e., post the same thing in multiple topics or areas of the board to bring more attention to your post), or bump posts up to bring more attention to them (Wikipedia definition of "bumping": Someone wishing to keep a thread on this first page, or bring an old thread back to it will post a reply to it purely to do this).

If you don't understand them please let us know--we try to make them as clear as possible. As you can see, spam can range from the obvious like people trying to sell Viagra here, to the less obvious, like someone sharing their blog--which shouldn't be done in posts, but can be done in one's Personal Profile area. Spamming can also be someone who posts the same or similar thing over and over to try to get more attention, or a post designed to bump up a topic to bring more attention to it.

Take care,

Scott

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If you are not sure, here are the board rules on spamming:

2. Do not promote your own business, Web site or products--even if they offer free services. The proper place to post your Web site, business or other services is in your profile, not in your signature block or in posts.

3. Do not spam the boards (i.e., post the same thing in multiple topics or areas of the board to bring more attention to your post), or bump posts up to bring more attention to them (Wikipedia definition of "bumping": Someone wishing to keep a thread on this first page, or bring an old thread back to it will post a reply to it purely to do this).

If you don't understand them please let us know--we try to make them as clear as possible. As you can see, spam can range from the obvious like people trying to sell Viagra here, to the less obvious, like someone sharing their blog--which shouldn't be done in posts, but can be done in one's Personal Profile area. Spamming can also be someone who posts the same or similar thing over and over to try to get more attention, or a post designed to bump up a topic to bring more attention to it.

Take care,

Scott

Thanks Scott. I didn't know about those until they were pointed out to me when I put my personal website in my signature area. Simple mistake! But everyone was nice about it. That's why I like it here. I have been on other boards where they just ban you, no questions asked. It is like walking on eggshells!

Side note, I noticed that Scott/Admin was Member number "2", wonder who Member number "1" was! LOL! :)

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Thanks to moderators for watching out.

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Thanks Scott. I didn't know about those until they were pointed out to me when I put my personal website in my signature area. Simple mistake! But everyone was nice about it. That's why I like it here. I have been on other boards where they just ban you, no questions asked. It is like walking on eggshells!

Side note, I noticed that Scott/Admin was Member number "2", wonder who Member number "1" was! LOL! :)

I am glad that Scott has detailed the rules and reasons.

AND, if I remember correctly (doubtful) I don't thinks there is a #1. I think that #1 was a prototype person during the creation of Celiac.com. NO, now I remember.....#1 was the web-computer-dude who helped build this site (as opposed to Scott :P )

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.#1 was the web-computer-dude who helped build this site

In my experience all those computer dudes think they're #1

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