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Spam post removed from another thread

Discussion in 'About This Site' started by Forest, May 19, 2015.

  1. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi folks,

    I'd like to thank @Tennis Tom for identifying what appears to be a spammer in another thread. I've moved the original post and Tom's reply here to help people develop an idea of what spam looks like.

    The post had a suspicious link to Shouldice hospital, which I guess does hernia repair.

    Links are a valuable currency on the internet because search engines such as Google consider a link to a site to be an endorsement of the site. For a firm, the more links there are to a site, the more people Google will send them and the more money they will make. Therefore, ambitious relatively small firms pay "black hat SEOs" from developing nations to find forums such as ours to spam with links to their site. To protect our forum, we take an active approach to spam, letting the spammers know that spam is not tolerated on our site.

    Typically, the black hat SEOs are located in developing countries with decent technical infrastructures and some English ability. Over the years, you get good at identifying spam posts. Tennis Tom could identify the spam immediately and clicked the "Report" link to draw my attention to the post. I investigated and have removed the offending links.

    (There is a report link below every post, and I encourage people to use it when they suspect spam or some other violation of our policies. I am tremendously busy behind the scenes and this is a free forum, so I won't get involved unless a post interferes with the proper running of our forum. We have a great group here, so I almost never have to do anything, but for small, well run forums like this one, spam, personal attacks, and "drama" are the behaviors most likely to lead to moderator or admin involvement.)

    Thanks for catching the post, Tom. I take way too much pride in this forum to allow spam to pollute it.
    Last edited: May 20, 2015
    Tennis Tom likes this.
  2. Krisli

    Krisli Newcomer

    Hi, recently I have been diagnosed with hernia by a specialist in Hospital ( [link removed]) at Pennsylvania. The specialist has consulted me to undergo a surgery. I'm not completely unknown with its procedure apparently. Is it a painful surgery? Any replies will be highly appreciated
    Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2015
  3. Tennis Tom

    Tennis Tom Beloved Grand Eagle

    WOW! A hospital that does nothing but hernias and guarantees their work--didn't know there was such a thing. It looks really nice too, kinda' like the White House, things are probably really antiseptic there.

    It sounds like English is your second language, are you Pennsylvania Dutch? Well, you came to the right place if you want to save some money and recovery time. TMS is about psychosomatic dis-ease. If it's not structural, and it's TMS, all you have to do is read a book. You can get a used TMS book on Amazon for 1 cent + $3.99 shipping--the best medical bargain on the planet, next to chicken soup--it might even be cheaper then a bowl of chicken soup at Max's Diner.

    What TMS books have you read? You may want to read a TMS book before you go to that nice looking white hospital. But, if you do go ahead and have the surgery, maybe they will give you a discount for having mentioned them here.

    Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2015
  4. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    Looking at the post, I suspect that Tom noticed the following hallmarks of spam:
    • Includes a link in their first post ever on the site.
    • Reply to an old thread.
    • If you're going to a specialist hernia repair hospital, wouldn't you ask them if the procedure is painful rather than posting on a random forum that you have never participated in before, where people don't know anything about hernia surgery?
    • Don't seem to understand or care that structural diagnoses (hernia) aren't relevant on a forum that says "Tension Myositis Syndrome" at the top of the page (these words, unfortunately, scare a lot of people away who could be helped by our approach - however, spammers seem to ignore them).
    • Poor English.
    • The post was made at 5:42 AM, Eastern Time (this is business hours for many spamming countries)
    • The poster hasn't come back to the site since making the post
    The above are the signs that I suspect tipped Tom off (would you care to elaborate if I missed anything, Tom?).

    I conducted an additional investigation and found that the device that made the post is a dedicated server from netelligent hosting services in Canada. These servers cost between $89 and $389 per month to rent and are only rented by businesses - generally for running web sites. Spammers can use them to attempt to hide their tracks, though. They use them to make it look like they are North Americans rather than coming from a region that is known as a source of spam.

    Basically, real people don't surf the web from dedicated servers. Spammers do.

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