The urge to point out spam

There’s a spam attack on. At the time of typing this, at least three posters have felt the need to post to the spam threads. This keeps the things to the top of the forums.

I was wondering – why comment? What’s the urge all about? Why not just do what we’ve been asked to do before, and simply report the post?

…and we hardly knew her :frowning:

I think it comes from a desire to let people know that you have seen the spam and (hopefully) acted on it… apart from the occasional simul-post, there should be no reason for more than one post per spam thread.


The main point of that spam was to amass clicks to get money. The thread itself was designed as lie to trick people into clicking the link. It was the deceit involved that drove me to post to warn people not to click the link. I would have done the same if it were porn. Got to look out for my fellow dopers. If however it was click this link and buy my stuff spam I wouldn’t have posted.

Although I did report it before I posted.

From what I’ve seen here, Fern Forest, most posters read the post, click on the link, and tend not to read the next post down with the warning in it. Your reason is sound and logical, but I don’t think it really helps.

That aside, there were posts there that were simply saying, “Oh, hey! This is spam!” and “Oh, look, I’m posting with all these other folks in a spammer’s thread!”

Yes, I sound like a niggling nanny. Sorry. I just prefer the tack of just reporting it, in the forums the thing appears in, and waiting for the cops to arrive.

It’s just the thrill of pointing it out for people(regardless of how many before them), at least it seems so to me. Beyond the first reply, most people cannot contain their rapier wit, and must also post “1 2 3 BYE BYE!” alongside reporting it. Making their mark on something that’ll be remembered for a few minutes.

Silly business.

I don’t think we can really know what happens when dopers enter a thread like this since unlike many other boards we don’t get to see how many clicks occur on a link. I can say that when I find myself in a thread where there’s a link I’ll often often wait and read what others say about it before I decide to click it. More for unknown dopers then for known dopers but I usually do that not because I’m worried about the link but because I don’t want to be bothered by things that might not appeal or simply bore me. Also because I like to hear what others have to say. In this case that wasn’t possible since when I opened the thread no one had replied.

I do feel that my “Don’t click that link!” caught some peoples eyes before they decided to click on it. Now I have a 19" monitor and when I open up this thread I can just read my post count in this thread but even on smaller monitors the first line of grimpixie’s post should be quite obvious. How could such a post not stop some people from clicking.

Now in this case I don’t suppose that it would have really hurt anyone clicking on it. Just annoyed them. Whereas for porn, well that can get people fired if they reading from work. To me finding myself in that situation it just seemed like a common courtesy.

Like I said were this a situation where it was obvious what was going on I wouldn’t have posted. But here where deception was being practiced I feel that the right thing to do was point it out.

It’s the Blank Wall Syndrome: We all have an urge to make a mark on whatever we can find that’s virginal and untainted. Especially if we’re given markers and masks, as we’ve been granted here.

BTW, what was on the other end of that link? I didn’t click it.

That’s cool, Fern Forest. You were trying to help out. I commend you for that. Others – I’m not so sure about. :slight_smile:

I didn’t stay for long but it sounded like it was a money making URL. You get so many people to click on that link and they’re supposed to send you so much for each person that clicks on the link. I’m glad the mods were so quick about nixing them.

Debating over the internet always makes me nervous since it’s so difficult to control how others interpret your tone and meaning. Thank you for believing me Ice Wolf, it makes me feel better.

It was an Outwar link. By the way…if you DO happen to click on an Outwar link, look around the page, there’s a “Report this spammer” link on it. :smiley: Outwar CLAIMS that they terminate spammers’ accounts.

I didn’t see the particular thread that sparked this conversation, but I have seen other spam threads. Most are pretty obvious drive by spam along the lines of “Click on teh link and sattisfy your WILDest dessires!!!” However, I have seen one or two where the spammer put together a coherent post that was nearly indistinguishable from a (rather vague but legit) GQ. And in those cases I appreciated that another sharp-eyed Doper posted a warning. I personally tend to read at least a few posts into a thread before clicking on any links, to get a better feel for the subject before having to load another page, so the warnings were effective.

If I was the first person to stumble across an OP that wasn’t obvious spam, I’d post a warning, too. Otherwise, I just report the post (and, of the four or five I’ve reported, all have been erased in like 15 minutes).

What Zut said.

I reported a spam the other day and then the next thread was a long story ending with the same spam. I reported it and posted that it was a spam. Someone who hadn’t seen the first spam only thread might have been suckered in.

Mods were quick, too. Not just banned, but the threads deleted within minutes.

The above reasons are all admirable (although I still question real effectiveness, but we’ll never know for sure). I do like Derleth’s “Blank Wall” analogy. That might explain why a string of Dopers posted to the thread that appeared in GQ last night. Probably thought it was as funny as another scalar weapons thread, I suppose. :rolleyes:

I dunno Wolfie.

IMHO, the folks who posted there did the right thing in this particular situation, though it may not always be appropriate.

In my case, I did click on the link. In fact, I did it expecting spam. Before y’all shoot me I did it because it was just before (or after) the SDMB’s back-up, and it was the dead of night in the USA. I saw the provocative thread title and the unrecognised newbie username. It had zero views at that stage, and when I opened the thread, the spammer still had a post count of 1. I assumed therefore that I was the first Doper on the scene, so I opened the link to remove any doubt that it was spam, and then I contacted the moderators.

Now, the only reason I didn’t actually post in the threads was because I didn’t think to, and also because by the time I’d checked the other forums to see if we were getting swamped, others had done so. The posters weren’t bumping the thread any more than probably only one position if at all as it was still at the top. Also, given the time of night, there may not have been any mods around for a while, so I think a warning saying “This is what this is. Don’t click on it” is entirely appropriate, and those Dopers did the right thing.

They also CLAIM to have a “Report this spammer” link. When I went to the page, the closest I saw was a “spam policy” link, which I clicked. There I was told that to report spam, return to the spammer’s page and clicked the “report this spammer” link. I returned to the page, but after five minutes of searching around it, I concluded that either it was bs, or the spammer had somehow hacked his or her own page to remove it. Whatever the reason, there wasn’t one.

I knew the end result was for all the posts and thread to disappear. That is why I was going to do a Red Dwarf’s impersonation of Creighton saying something like:

“Well this will disappear soon for being a spam. We will return soon to the correct timeline in our universe. This means this thread will fade into the void. Therefore, this post never happened. Therefore, before that, I have the chance to tell you the hot chick that you are the most rotten [sub]piece of…… [/sub] [fades]

But by that time the pit thread was gone!

So,I made a Gamer spammer curse pit thread in honor of bastards like that one. I did not mention names because I did not want to even give any more hits to those guys, only to find many in this thread point the spammer out! :mad:. . . . . :wink: :stuck_out_tongue: :smiley:

With all due respect, TheLoadedDog – I have already said that those who posted to those spammer threads in the same vein as Fern Forest described were to be commended. You seem to have slightly missed my point, in offering your opinion.

Quoting myself:

And so, I agreed that the other posts that were just a bit of light discussion about the threads were “filling the blank wall”, and I now leave satisfied. That, and because this is another night, and I’m not such a niggly cuss – it’s all cool, anyway. :slight_smile:


I’m not sure if I’ve askd this before, but doesn’t the board software have a censorship/replacement function that could be set up to automatically break the URLs of various common spam targets (such as OutWar)?