Is this spam? #9
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This thread is to discuss whether a particular post/profile/group is spam.
Posts/profiles/groups should NOT automatically be flagged based solely on someone asking here whether they are spam. READ THE DISCUSSION and make a considered judgment first.
I think it's spam.
I agree. "Download this" is pretty much always spammy to me.
This looks like it's supposed to be an intro post, but it reads like it's book advertising. So I'm not sure. (The response to it... Yeah, I'm leaving it alone.)
Do you mean the first post in the thread? Although it's pretty clearly self-advertisement, it's also ancient! If it hadn't been pushed up by carusmm's response, I'd be inclined to leave it alone, but now that it has been, I do think I'll flag it.
carusmm seems to be going around resurrecting old threads in a couple of groups, for reasons best known to himself.
Here's some odd data:
Carusmm has little personal information, except for a "favorite" author. That author is represented here on LT precisely once (it's in the library of a collector, or perhaps library of, Tasmanian and Australian authors, TasWriters, and no, I don't think that account has anything to do with Carusmm, just pointing it out).
It's not available for purchase anywhere that I can see (and was added to that library in 2011, when TasWriters first joined).
Molly Guy is a real person, and has a pretty strong footprint on social media (albeit not as an author). Here's her web site (http://stonefoxbride.com/); warning, it's instagram heavy. She has a facebook page, although it hasn't been updated since December 2015, where she states that she's an author.
There's something really odd going on here (please note, I do NOT claim, at all, that Molly Guy is, or even knows about, Carusmm).
It appears that he (based on the pronoun used by Goodreads and on the G+ profile of 'carusmm' who may or may not be the same individual) was engaging in similar behavior on Goodreads, and got booted for it (and that his posts were deleted with no evidence they have ever existed; compare
and note the scrubbed comments.)
Based on the Facebook activity, I think carusmm is a fan (the Goodreads location of carusmm matches that of one of the posters on Molly Guy's page, and the image that poster uses on Facebook matches carusmm's image here), but not actually the author.
If you find one, let me know! In the past the staff have been pretty hard-core in favor of posters of drivel and have warned longtime members not to say anything negative about them, but this is more extreme than any case I can remember.
>32 lorax: I usually don 't flag in cases like this either, but this guy passed abusive so long ago, that it was hurting my hands not to flag.
ETA: I just spent a pleasant few minutes, un-ignoring all sorts of things. :-}
So, I'd say, on the whole, definitely flaggable, but someone we'd be willing to welcome back after having a chat with staff.
Thank you. This is a case where rationally I'd have said the poster was obviously flaggable, but without a clear line in the TOS to point to, and given the dire warnings against inappropriate flagging, I held back. This gives me some reassurance that if a similar situation happens again I'm not going to be the one slapped with a TOS violation if I do flag the poster.
It's a valid member account (sort of, since the library is private), but those two topics both contain a link to youtube videos (not the same one).
I'm flagging them, but not the profile:
PLEASE DON'T FLAG THE PROFILE. It's here only for the sake of completion.
ETA: Funny. I see I'm not the only one this bothered. I still say to flag the topics.
I think I'm the other bothered one. ;-)
It seems highly unlikely to me that this person is not the author, editor, or publisher -- and they are probably all three! -- but I wanted to give them an "out" if it just happened to be book trailers they personally like or find intriguing for some reason.
Flag them both. pls.
ETA: After reading previous comments on her profile, this is clearly standard procedure. I'm about to head outside and get busy (I'm running way behind), but someone ought to suggest to the powers that be that perhaps pangirl might be happier at another site. I'm not flagging the profile, but oh, I want to.
I think I would have let it go if he hadn't mentioned his booth.
Also this "Cascade" place is apparently some sort of association of sellers and not a single shop, so I'm not sure if that makes me more or less inclined to let it go, lol.
I'm inclined to let that one go. He seems primarily interested in informing people about the book fair generally, and his booth only incidentally.
I was tempted to leave a snarky* comment, but that would just leave the thread visible, so I didn't.
* ""Curious if anyone has any thoughts on it?" Yes, I wondered how you are related to the author."
I can't see anything commercial about it
That looks like the sort of post that'll turn into download links.
Dunno. The post is gone and you didn't link to the profile, so, having no idea what either is about, I have no thoughts on the matter.
I think it looks suspicious, but not really flaggable. Maybe an attempt to get traffic at the blog?
BOT being an acronym for the group, I'm guessing she doesn't know the meaning of the term.
She's definitely trying to push traffic to her blog. I don't know that it's against the TOS to use your personal website or blog as the group's, but I do find it incredibly obnoxious.
just joined, no books, we can use this to "promote our own work on Inshares"
I'm not familiar with Inshares but it looks like he is using LT to send traffic to them.
Edit: uh-oh, his second post there is flogging his own work.
First I said spammish... then I said it's sort of remotely relevant, and seems to be related to the Rajasthan Award account... then... hmm...
It could go either way. So far, no advertisement, no links, no address. Possibly meant to catalog books.
I am a member of that group, and am inclined to let it go. I don't think you can really call it 'commercial', as for at least some s/he only wants postage.
It certainly fits the group, and there is a fair amount of looking for books and offering books in the group.
That's definitely spam, no "?" about it. This has been a recurring problem recently.
ETA: Project Gutenberg boilerplate is all well and good, and I suppose the same can be said for Gutenberg derivatives' boilerplate, but neither of the above belong where you found them.
The question is, as with various pest infestation, for every one you see...
Any sign that there are other instances?
ETA: They've done this to hundreds if not thousands of books. It may take me some time to clean up, but I'm working on it!
*rushes to Ben & Jerry's*
Pick me up some, too, okay? ;-)
This one is sitting on the edge of my spam slam notes. It's kinda self promotion, kinda not. I'm not real sure. Anyone else want to chime in?
ETA: just posted to that effect. Member has been here for a while.
maybe a friend trying to help the author?
(Not the profile http://www.librarything.com/profile/AnthonyHerrera, of course.)
Definitely flag the posts, but leave the poster for now. Here's a third link.
My "fee" is a positive or negative review of my work. I have to mention a fee. It's complicated.
Too complicated for me. I don't understand what she is saying.
ETA: I also said about this same thing, just now, over on the thread itself.
I saw that; I highly doubt that that is what the unemployment comp people consider "actively seeking work".
Hmm, in fact, I know it's not, in her case. "What constitutes an adequate job search depends on your field." According to her profile, she was a nurse.
I could go either way, but it's gonna get flagged.
no books catalogued
mentions website and kickstarter
"chance to support our efforts" and help us grow
wants ideas/advice - vague, non-specific
not liking it
I don't think it is. The member's been around for a fair bit, has a variety of books catalogued. I'm wondering if s/he meant to post in the "What are you reading now?" group, as s/he's a member there.
Agreed that it seems like a misplaced post rather than anything spammy. (For one thing, the review is balanced rather than gushing praise.)
I thought that might be the case because the member belongs to the What are you reading now? group, and the content of the post seemed as though s/he was talking about current (or very recent) reading.
No links, but might bear watching.
ETA: was removed for spam as I typed.
It's an overzealous author. The post can be flagged, but the profile should not be flagged.
I'm going to flag it. Could you leave a comment in German on his profile?
It's certainly a less-than-ideal use of the work system. I flagged it, so it's up for a vote now.
I don't consider that to be spam. "Litter", certainly, but it is not obvious and unquestionable commercial promotion of something unrelated to books, so it doesn't meet the threshold for spam. I'd leave a profile comment for the member politely suggesting that sort of explanation is better placed on their profile or TinyCat page.
I'm pretty sure that ccsfgifts hasn't been on the site for years.
San Francisco Public Library? The "author" of the book is listed as "Karen Saginor", who is a librarian at the City College of San Francisco. Hence, "ccsfgifts". They were apparently using LT as a way of tracking donated books.
Nothing to do with attracting business.
Profile looks spammy, but maybe they're planning to start cataloging an office library?
"I can't find the rule that states don't make stupid groups."
There isn't one. There's a rule against "pointless," "meaningless" or "random" groups, but not against "stupid" groups. I often think that's a pity. ;-)
If I hadn't known that the member had contacted us, I would have suspected this as a test spam attack, checking the limits of Talk, so thanks very much for looping me in on this one!
Sounds like mommy did it... then it's ok?
ETA woops, its not a spam. TOS
Thanks, I edited my post above, and sent a pm to Lorannen.
Okay, so they're selling bookmarks not books, but I still find myself strangely reluctant to flag the profile ... I'll let someone else decide ...
All these are spam in my eyes, but so are some posts and members that I know are OK by the TOS.
Just in case, here's the "author" profile in question:
(I don't know that I've ever seen an author profile that was the same as the profile of the user. Weird.)
I don't see any of those as spam (well, obviously can't tell about the second). It's perfectly within the TOS for authors to join, and list no books, or just their own books.
note that "Ron Abboud" has anointed himself an author, even though there are ZERO works here on LT by him.
He is an author. People who write journal articles are authors, even if they don't write books.
I'd left a note on Lorannen's profile about that profile, pointing her to this thread.
I don't flag most of the profiles others are identifying as spam unless they've done other things (such as make spam groups, or post topics that are spam). I'm sure that most deserve it, but I'd feel the need to check on them, and life is too short for that...
Ah! Never mind. He's cataloging books.
the only catalog item has been suppressed as spam.
My two cents:
Not spam. Yes, keyword-heavy, but the member is clearly an author. "He has authored and published over 20+ paperback, audio and ebooks" -- 'nuff said.
Flagged down already, so can't say.
Tough one! Definitely keyword-laden, even sends a message to himself with additional keywords. This barely avoids flagging in my book because the website it links to is a personal website with a URL composed of the member's personal name. The website itself, while also spammy-looking, is in substantial part composed of the member's C.V..
This is a case where the guidance note I added regarding links to URLs composed of the member's real name really comes into play: it's precisely examples like this one that I had in mind when I added it.
Finally, let me note that in my book, the member does *not* qualify as an author on the basis of having written a few articles (for which we have no indication of their having been published anywhere besides the author's own blogs or marketing material), and I'm sparing this profile for other reasons.
ETA: I would not blame anyone for flagging this. That was my first instinct, and it was only after some pondering and investigating the link that I realized his obsession for lame SEO tactics and keyword stuffing extends even to his own personal website where he hosts his CV. That's just embarrassing. It makes me think that this is a case of someone who has read too many SEO guides and now supposes that this is simply how personal profiles and websites should be written.
Not spam. Linked website is defunct. Plausibly claims to be a bookseller, and with no functioning website to investigate, this cannot be gainsaid.
ETA >203 anglemark: "The profile pages are the spam." -- Precisely. The backlinks and keywords are all in place and influencing the spammer's search rankings positively, and the end result (for the spammer's purposes) is about the same as with more visible forms of spam, like works or talk posts. When spam profiles stay up, the spammer counts this as a "success" and is incentivized to come back again and again: spam unvanquished begets more spam. That's a major plank underlying this enterprise: reinforcing LT's reputation as a place where spamming doesn't pay.
I'm Amber Lynn, From United States of America. I am a Blue Angels United officer working at US Navy Base camp in Syria, I saw your profile now on (librarything), I am interested on you, contact me on my private email i have something serious and private that i would love to disclose to you, It's due to my job that i don't want to talk much here on the site, I will introduce myself better and send you my picture as soon as i receive your mail.
Good, she has been suspended.
https://www.librarything.com/profile/abdelazizebeid - Google Translate reveals this is about live streaming broadcast channels. Yes.
https://www.librarything.com/profile/geming.leader - the Arabic site is down, and the English site is private, so it's impossible to investigate their contents any further. Based on the profile alone it could go either way, so I would say No.
https://www.librarything.com/profile/ertqaaa - seems to be something to do with Google AdWords (as stated repeatedly), ergo online marketing, ergo commercial (even though the link is down). Yes.
Probably doesn't qualify as spam, but might be worth administrative attention.
Not sure if it's being catalogued as a resource or what. If it's intended to drive traffic, linking it to a private account is an odd way of accomplishing that...
So I'm looking at the reviews on this profile, then looking at the profile. The reviews all state Courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy yet the profile doesn't mention any link to said website/magazine/whathaveyou.
So I'm wondering if this is a TOS breach or if someone knows more than it revealed...
Second thought: hmm.
Looks like she's reposting reviews she write herself for this site, with the permission of the site, which presumably has the copyright for her reviews. Which is a totally fine thing for her to do.
I'm thinking that "Kryssi" is also that site, or at least knows them. I'd still call it a TOS violation, myself. It's an odd thing, really, since the user seems to have been active in 2008, vanished, and then shows back up in 2014 (which is when all the "reviews" started showing up). Maybe we just weren't interesting enough.
Meanwhile, going through Georgia, I found this.
It's not really bookish, but in my book, it's sure as hell not spam.
Sharing for awesomeness. Don't you dare flag it! Maybe even leave a nice note of support. :-)
"To bring the citizens of Atlanta joy through the love of an adoptable cat and food provided by homeless locals in the process of getting back on their feet."
posts 5 through 8 and 51-59. Some of the profiles still exist, and their catalogs interlink with each other and more members. The data tracks back to Amazon data, with non-book items being allowed to list ISBNs, most often with low ISBN numbers that associate with Italian works. I threw up my hands; it is so complicated. Every now and then I go back and gingerly do some separation.
I'm not flagging this one, but I will check back to see if they move into spammy actions.
That's annoying, but the fact is that there is no limit* on the number of photos one can upload, and we've always let pass short descriptions such as the ones he has there.
And he did remove two photos that I flagged as not being images of the author.
* I wish there were, though. I know why an author would upload slews of photos, but other people do it, too. It's particularly silly when there are only minor differences, such as a bit being cropped or the author having slightly changed position.
>246 lilithcat: I usually try to be selective, but sometimes my wee-hours Wikimedia Commons-raiding fits devolve into rote adding. Also, sometimes I'm viewing and adding images sequentially, and each appears to be an improvement on the last -- which I can't be arsed to go back and delete. Not ideal, but there are worse situations. At least I try to set the best one as the default.
It always cracks me up when they put up a photo on the profile, and then don't bother with putting up that SAME photo on the author page.
The "reviews" for the books (written by Wendy) are mostly of the one-sentence, gosh/wow type, with poor sentence structure and an inability to properly capitalize (it hurts my eyes to see it, when I am still drinking coffee). Remind me not to hire Wendy as my shill, should I ever write my memoirs.
I dunno. I may come back and flag the profile later, after more coffee (I lack kindness or compassion at the moment). I'd think that someone ought to point it out to staff, and leave it in their lap. It's Monday, after all.