I occasionally hub-hop, but most of the time I come away from it feeling like I haven't really accomplished much as far as "improving HubPages" goes.
So tonight, just for laughs, I decided to type "mesothelioma" into the search box at the top of HubPages' homepage. I then sorted them by date, skipped ahead to page 20, and started reading hubs that were published 6 months ago...
"mesothelioma" is one of those used-to-death, supposedly $20 keywords, and many of the resulting hubs I found were true cr@p! I went through about 10 pages of search results and flagged about 80% of the hubs I read as Spam or Low Quality. About a third of the hubs I flagged were duplicates and/or poorly spun gibberish, and the rest were 100 words of nonsense with 2 affiliate links and no useful content.
Many of these hubs were by users with other low quality hubs, which also got flagged.
After an hour or so of doing this, I felt like I WAS making HubPages a better place!
So along with hub-hopping - which to me seems to mostly consist of reviewing recently published hubs - I think I will continue to search out spammy keywords like that one and try and prune out some of the truly low quality, garbage hubs that are bringing the whole site down and making us look like a content farm.
Anyone else doing this? It seems like it could be a very effective addition to hopping.
And I can already hear the cries of "Here come the thought police". But take a look around HubPages and you'll find a lot of spam related to these types of keywords - but, thanks to the great community of authors here, you'll also find a lot of well-written, informative and helpful hubs that feature those keywords!
Let's clean this place up so that those who write good content have a chance to see their work thrive rather than drown in a sea of spam
I've been doing this sort of thing ever since I joined the site. There are a few "pet peeves" I have when it comes to spam and low-quality, and at least once a week, I ferret them out and flag stuff that needs to go.
Last week, I took one topical category where I write a lot and which happens to be not too large, and went through a few hundred Hubs really fast. Hubs that were just a paragraph, or which were mis-categorized were super easy to spot and flag.
It's like weeding your garden or cleaning the house. If you put it off then the problem becomes huge, but if you just spend a few minutes here and a few minutes there, it really tackles it without being a burden.
Do you have any keyword suggestions that others can use for this sort of flagging?
I love your garden analogy! Since you've been doing this for a while, I'd imagine you could suggest some good keywords for us to check
Pick something you hate. Better yet, pick something you REALLY hate.
Maybe it's man boobs. Maybe it's getting your ex back. Maybe it's bogus pages for solar and wind power which are really just trying to sell an e-book but aren't actually telling you anything. Maybe it's turning water into gas. Maybe it's body part enlargements or acai berries or weight loose. (yes that was spelled that way to make a point!)
We all know what spam and low-quality looks like. It's all over the web, those cheesey-rip-off topics that turn up everywhere you look.
If you aren't sure if something might be flag-worthy, click the flag button AND READ THE VARIOUS REASONS. Your report doesn't go to admin with just one click, you still have to indicate why you think admin should take a look. They have a lot of stuff they'd like us to point out to them.
That's a great point - I tried to make sure that I was flagging appropriately. If it was 2 paragraphs and 2 affiliate links, I flagged it as Spam; if it was just short and keyword stuffed, it was Low Quality; if I thought it was spun nonsense I noted that in the additional info.
We need to keep in mind that our flagging will be reviewed by a hard-working HubPages staff member, so we should at least make an effort to make their job less difficult!
And for that same reason, we should not be tempted to flag hubs just because we don't like them - if there isn't an actual violation, then all we're doing is wasting a staff member's time when they have to review the flagged hub...
a good post, relache.
what about the 'cure this by doing this' articles written by hubbers with no authority/medical background to write this type of article? [about serious medical conditions]
Relache, this is a good suggestion I'll go try!
Yes, others have been on the case as well. Only we're not called the "thought police." We've all been accused -- by many hubbers -- of being on a "witch hunt." Sigh...
If those same folks only took a few minutes to really, really look around, they would know that we're not out looking for middle-of-the-road hubs, we're ferreting out the hubs like the guy who had one published for six months that contained nothing but "asdf asdf asdf asdf..."
Edweirdo, another winner. Which reminds me that I've gotta get your Chrome plugin for the forums filter. I went to do it once, but couldn't find a link for the chrome edition.
Anyways. You've got a great idea there, I think your approach would be much more effective and direct than hub-hopping, which does make me feel dirty. Such an ethical toss-up occurs for me when hub-hopping.
I suggest a list of prime suspect keywords that we might all claim a watch-word or phrase. If someone else didn't already do that.
I guess now would be a good time to read the rest of the thread.
This is great Edweirdo! Thanks! I'd like to join you, so how do I figure out what are spammy words, so I can search for them? I showing my ignorance.
Yahoo answers is a site which attracts a lot of spammy answers when people ask "How do I make money online".
Fixing the spam problem on that site would probably be much easier than on this site, yet the spam bots continue to persist on Y!A and lately they've been getting worse.
I appreciate how pretty hub pages is comparing to rather tacky sites like my space and to a lesser extent, yahoo answers.
its too bad Hub Pages pretty interface gets tainted by spam and other garbage.
Great idea! I'm not a keyword expert, otherwise I'd join you, but I feel the same when I hub hop (unless I have a lucky day!)
In addition to "mesothelioma" here are some other potentially spammy keywords:
1. Penis Enlargement
2. Get Your Ex Back
3. Acai Berry
4. Reverse Cell Phone Lookup
5. Credit Card Debt Relief
6. Male Enhancement Pill
7. TV for PC
From h ttp://www.potpiegirl.com/2011/03/my-theory-on-the-google-algo-change/#ixzz1Gp2GgiYW
May I also insist that it will be way more worth it if you do it to YOUR keywords. !light bulb
knock out any keywords you can, haha
None of the hubbers are capable of "knocking out any keywords." That's all up to the HP team.
I assumed (and hope!) that he meant we should try and get rid of the spam that is currently competing with our keywords, and not just try and eliminate the competition
When I flagged for mesothelioma, I actually came across more than a couple of well-written and useful hubs - it's a shame that they have to compete for traffic with a lot of spammy cr@p! Those good hubs are the ones that could (and should!) actually have a chance at a decent CPC for that keyword...
I simply meant check your keywords, there are certainly ones that need to be flagged. I found 3-4 above me on one of my keywords.
The joys of Hub hopping.. I used to do it a couple of times a week now I hubhop everyday... I guess we need to do our bit too
Happy flagging!! I found a few Indian aunties this morning!!
The cool thing about keyword-specific flagging vs hopping is that you aren't at the mercy of whatever happens to be in the hopper - you can seek out the truly lousy stuff that's out there...
Hah! You were right, edweirdo. I searched for acai berry, chose one at random and found that the author had 4 hubs, all duplicates. Flagged all four plus the profile.
I did something similar with gambling
Some of these might hopefully be addressed via a script.
Something else I do occasionally - when I click on forum topics that are obviously spam I check the profile (to double check) and then flag the profile also if it meets the definition of spam.
yes! with all of the flagging talk in the forums, I'm sure it gets a little crazy. I think Paul or Maddie made mention of that in one of these threads.
Are we still a writing site?
Or just flogging and whipping each other and ourselves site?
I know, Misha, I know... Not everybody can handle a free world... Almost 20 years here, still wondering...
Alright I'll take Penis Enlargement.
And thanks to the others for tips on watching your own keywords. I never thought of that either.
2009 List of Spam Keywords
Words and Phrases that Trigger Some Spam Filters
Copy and paste these into the Hubpages search to find all of the gems; there are plenty of them.
No investment <------- good one on Hubpages
Eliminate bad credit
erase bad credit
Work at home
Lower interest rates
Free grant money
This is a very useful thread, 1,000 times!
Last night I flagged at least 50 Hubs and a dozen fake/spammy "Questions". I've been remiss on doing this regularly, but am joining you others starting last night.
How about young people (some probably in middle school, too young to be here) asking for homework answers? Some of these Q's can make a useful Hub not already written somehere on HP, but a lot of these are ... well, I HATE these Q's. Short answers, easily looked up.
Anyway, thank you for this thread.
I have been hub-hopping on a daily basis and have flagged many poor quality hubs but never thought of searching for particular spammy keywords. Great idea. Now more than ever we need to stand together and weed out the cr@p that is giving HP a bad image.
As Patty says - this is a very useful thread, 1000 times!
Well, I just did a Viagra search. We appear to still have over 800 hubs in that category…
Edit: Make that 793.
I've been targeting fanfiction, primarily. Mostly because fan fiction is questionable at best, especially when the thoughts of the original copyright holder aren't really known.
But as there are documented incidents of authors suing people who post fanfiction of their work, I think it's only a matter of time before someone irks the wrong writer and Hubpages comes under fire.
I had not thought of that. Thanks for the info!
Mind you, reviews of someone else's work isn't the same as fanfiction. So if you write a review of Twilight, I don't have an issue with that. If you write a story that involves Bella as a vampire biting whoever, then I have an issue. (And yes, if the characters are named Bella and Edward, who are also vampires, but you try to claim that it is an original story, I will flag it.)
Finding inspiration from your wonderful forum plugin, what if we had a plugin to help us seek out commonly abused topics/keywords?
Maybe a list of topics/keywords and prebuilt searches?
Maybe some stats to help inspire us and show if we are making a dent?
**HubPages could/should have an accolade for Hub Hopping, don't you think?
That would be far too complex for me to do externally - it's something that HubPages would have to do themselves, since they have much better access to the data on their servers than anyone outside the company would...
Perhaps you could make a suggestion in the "Suggest a feature" forum topic!
We have 3 hubbers named nookie and apparently 60 nookie hubs.
Hello fellow Hubbers.
Thank you Edwierdo for the Firefox Add-on, now i enjoy coming to the forum without all the religious and politics topics.
About the topic, this weekend i "flagged" a complete topic, "electronic cigarettes", i'm currently developing a blog and shopping cart to sell this product in my country and i was wondering if i could monetize with Adsense also, i discovered that this topic is does not comply with Adsense Content Guidelines, did a search on Hubpages about this particular topics and there are tons of Hubs about this particular subject, i send a message to the staff warning about this, was informed that they are taking measures to purge the site about this.
Great idea Edweirdo! This thread inspired me to make a comment which grew into a new hub. =]
This thread inspired me to go have a look at what has been written already in my latest niche (have 8 hubs in the planning so far - well they are written but still in Word) and I was shocked at what I found. Several people, all 20 months ago which makes me suspect it is the same person, have written one hub each using my new keywords but full of nonsensical content that has nothing to do with the topic and is totally inaccurate, as well as having really poor English. Flagged the lot of them, and this time I hope team remove them because I don't want them showing up in my 'related hubs' section.
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