Spammers go to a lot of trouble

By Steve Outing

I knew it would happen eventually, but it took a year.

Yesterday, a spammer created a user account on YourClimbing.com, then posted a blog item to the site (part of my Enthusiast Group network of sites) that was a lengthy “story” about some paycheck service. The spam showed on the site for only a few minutes before I spotted it, deleted it, then blocked the spammer’s account.

It’s not surprising that some spammer would try this. The surprise is that in our first year of operation, this hasn’t happened until now.

One of the things you hear critics of grassroots media (i.e., sites like ours that let users post whatever they want) is that there could be much abuse like that — and worse. And yes, it could still happen, and we’re ready to deal with it if the day comes. But my experience — and that of others plying this new form of media — is that it happens much less than you might expect.

I think this is partly a result of the narrow focus of our sites. YourClimbing.com, like our other sites, is so narrowly focused that it attracts only people who are passionate about the topic. That laser focus seems to keep abuses at a low level.

I just hope that yesterday’s spammer was an anomoly. He went to a lot of trouble (going through our site’s registration process, then posting) just to have his “story” online for 5 minutes.

Author: Steve Outing Steve Outing is a Boulder, Colorado-based media futurist, digital-news innovator, consultant, journalist, and educator. ... Need assistance with media-company future strategy? Get in touch with Steve!