Now before you cyber-stone me for my idea...just hear me out. I've been thinking this thing through since this morning...you may say give it more time imatellmuva...give it more time.
I responded to a forum post by brake21, who had hub content copied by a spammer on another site. I responded because today I discovered that the same thing happened to me.
Then, I saw a forum post by Manchester23, regarding people joining, and then suddenly leaving. My response shows that I think they're joining for all the wrong reasons.
THEN, I saw a post from bie88, who WriteAngled identified as a banned spammer. THANK YOU WriteAngled for that comment!!!! I think you must've clicked the name first before you responded; it never occured to me to do that.
I'm get'n to it...I'm get'n to it, perhaps HubPages could institute a trial period for new hubbers, to better identify those who are here simply to scam. I recognize that the HubPages team relies on fellow hubbers to help mediate this problem, I also recognize that this issue is bigger than HubPages.
My desire is to create a solution that would at least minimize this type of activity here at HubPages. It was posted in this forum what not to do, but I ask is there any more that can be done?
My idea might fall into the cream-of-the-crap category, and hands down at that.
If you want to get rid of spammers as they start, just go to the hubbers pages and start with the lowest scores. You should be able able to find them that way. If we all started working on this, it would take care of the newbies that just just join to spam.
My favorite hub hopping method! However, there are tons that have been here for quite awhile with spun articles and duplicate content.
And not to mention that their are (were) people like me who of course started with low scores. Please describe what types of hub content you view as spam, or possible spam.
Ima, the ones that really stand out make absolutely no sense, but seemingly have phrases from many different articles strung together.
The main spam I hate is someone that writes a few sentences just so they can advertise their product or hub. I've run across people who have done this.
Then there are the articles that don't make any sense at all, but are keyword after keyword.
This idea has been brought up repeatedly by some great writers on this site for quite awhile now. I believe it's fallen on deaf ears... so you're singin' to the choir.
Many experienced writers have suggested many ways to do this, and the result has been silence so far from admin.
Then I digress, and will handle the spaminators imatellmuva style.
I'm glad you posted. You never know, you may have inspired someone at HQ to start developing an answer to your very fair question.
True, they might have wanted to hear it from someone else other than you, Randy, Mutiny, etc., etc., etc.!
Hey...maybe I'm the one with the Midas touch...or better yet...the Muva touch!
I know not to get my hopes up...or hold my breath on this one.
Maybe so, Ima. By the way, I love your name. When I was growing up, it was Imatellmama!
A southern thing...
Thanks DWP!! It was worth a shot (or a song)...I guess.
Hi Earnest! I think this topic has been beaten to death in the forums with every possible solution known to man, so if staff were going to act on it, they would have already done so. IMHO!
It would be nice if someone emerged from their hollow log in Cal and answered us on this one!
Psssst, Earnest... Don't hold your breath waiting for signs of life from that hollow log. It's the beginning of the 4th of July holiday here in the States. A 3-day weekend. Most likely the log will be unoccupied until (our) Tuesday morning. Cheers.
Thanks JamaGenee, I forgot about the holiday.
Earnest, this is soooo off-topic, but what does your country call its "independence day" and when do you celebrate. (I should already know this, but am claiming wee-hours flakedom...)
We have Australia day, but I have already forgotten when it is, as I don't have to pay employees holiday pay for it anymore.
I ignore all holidays and run to my own weird schedule.
Why am I not surprised? Hanging upside down at the bottom of the world will have that effect...
It changes the culture too. My standard greeting down here is
"Hows ya toenails?"
Ya gotta have something to hang on with.
And here I had some silly notion that your part of the world is more civilized than mine.
Nope! At least I'm not.
We do have houses and stuff, but I still prefer my hollow log.
I'd heard a rumor that you had houses and stuff. Glad to hear it's true.
Now JG don't let Earnest go 'pulling your leg' about living in a 'hollow log'!!!!
He may not admit it but just like the rest of us, he really lives in a cave
btw shame on you Earnest for not knowing Australia Day as every one knows is the 26 th of January, every year.
Well I think it is
I shall remember all my good friends down under quite easily on your Australia Day...it is my late mother's birthday!
Not to mention, I'll feel slight jealous pangs that you're celebrating summertime while I'm buried in Chicago blizzards!
We are in the middle of winter at this time, while you flounce around in the sunshine!
OK Ag, I admit we moved up to a cave a few months ago now.
Am I a capitalist yet?
Yes, but when we're enjoying our Indian Summer in Sep-Oct, they're freezing they're tushes off, so it all works out...kinda.
I imagine that there does exist forum topics on the subject. Some forum topics are so old that they're closed to comment, yet the topic still exists. For me this is similar to a poll, you have to get so many signatures before a consideration will be made. What is IMHO? Is that something privy between you and Ernest?
I think it is text talk for "In MY Humble Opinion"
Trust me, there's nothing privy between me and Earnest...more's the pity!
Ah! The tyranny of distance...the story of my life, hanging upside down at the bottom of the planet defying gravity all alone.
That's gotta be tough when you have to pee, Earnest!
It's not just the blood that rushes to my head!
Why must you stick a pin in my little pink bubble, Randy?!
There are many facets to this b*stard from the bush.
I woz gonna recite some Banjo Paterson, but I will cop another ban if I do!
I don't think Banjo sounds like a poet...more like someone from Randy's neck of the woods!
That's true enough. Randy is our petunia in the onion patch.
I'm beginning to think you have a "neck" fetish, DIY!
You say that like it's a bad thing...
Are you sober AGAIN Randy! You know you can't make with the fancy avatars in forums when ya tanked!
I know a sober Randy when I see one ya know!
That's twice in the one year mate!
Did the still blow up again?
Why do I always like the drunks? It's the story of my life!
My grandson is 16 months old and won't give up the bottle! It's a terrible affliction!
Oh don't do anything to get banned Ernest. We just met! It would be like dropping your icecream from the cone on the sidewalk...tears!!
That would be a new experience for me.
Cop that all you detractors!
Nice to meet you too! I will try not to get banned, but it can be hard work for me avoiding the Australian colloquialisms.
I figured as much....sssshh...don't tell Ernest!
Hi there, I didn't have to click on the name. I, and probably several others, flagged that person's hubs as spam. In the lack of any effective countermeasures by HP, the only thing that remains is for me, and you and anyone else writing here to hub hop and flag up spam and other c__p. Sometimes, it makes me feel like Canute, but at least it is a small push in the right direction for this site.
Still, I thank you for posting the comment, otherwise I may not have known! Your comment was more than helpful, it was down-right AWESOME! Go ahead...take a bow!
I almost commented, but luckily she was already taken down. Had you not commented, then more than one hubber would have been inconvenienced by commenting to her forum post.
I guess, my next suggestion (...and perhaps this too has been mentioned) is that when HubPages blocks a known spammer, that they immediately remove any forum posts. While the spammer may no longer prove harmful, it is clearly a waste for anyone to comment to a forum post. Then wonderful people like YOU wouldn't have to comment that the person is a spammer, and has been banned.
...and YES I'm go'n get my flag on!!! Thanks guurl!!!!
Well, you know when you're inside something hollow, there is alot of echo-echo-echo-echo....
Your question has been answered but just in case this is seen as a poll, I'll add my voice.
It's often been suggested that new Hubbers should have to submit their first few Hubs for human review before they are published.
When HubPages was riding high, that was dismissed because it was felt it would discourage people when they wrote something and had to wait days for it to appear on the site. At that time, the cr@p Hubs weren't hurting us, so it didn't seem worth doing.
Now it's a different story, and I find it unbelievable that HubPages can't see it would be far more efficient to institute this measure, than be constantly playing catch-up with the flood of new Hubs.
There are other revenue-sharing sites which have this system and it works.
While I am fairly new to HubPages (7 months old...waaa...waaaa), I would have humbly accepted this criteria when I first joined. While I haven't written many hubs, I am fairing well in the rankings with most of my hubs. Having an introductory standard may likely help folks like me stand-out a little better; meaning that our hubs, are not lost in a menagerie of hubs by hubbers of ill-intent.
I agree. After poking around looking at other sites, I found a majority of them want you to submit an article or writing sample for approval first. The time wasted trying to control all the garbage that comes in on a daily basis could be better spent screening new writers.
I joined hubpages for 3 years already and I disagree when some members are ban because they are accused of spamming. What are the basis of that they spam? Most people who are running the review of each hub are not IT experts. How can you tell that they did spam? For what I know hubpages already created a very strong security on their hubs with so many restrictions such as duplicate hubs... Let the new members enjoy becoming a hubber..
Let the older members enjoy "not having to flag the newcomer's junk" and we might reach a compromise.
I find your comment hysterical since the first article I looked at of yours is on the web probably in at least ten different places....PLEASE!!!
While I have not been here as long as you and Randy, it is some of the other hubbers who are helping me to identify spam, or what potentially is. The use of the word potential might be unsetlling to you daryl2007, but I think it's appropiate to air on the side of caution. It is the hub team who makes the final determination.
"A new broom sweeps clean, but an old broom knows the corners"
-Virgin Island Proverb
True, but if I see something that doesn't ring true, I just copy and paste into the nearest search engine. Tons of people just like our commentor above with duplicate content.
I am thankful for you DWP...all of you who posted refreshing and supportive comments to this forum post...even daryl2007 (smile). This has truly been an eyeopener for me, and teaches me that I can and should be as diligent as my fellow hubbers, by learning to recognize spam, then recognizing spam, and THEN doing SOMETHING about it!
It's kinda like the old adage "It takes a village..."
You're quite welcome JamaGenee! It seems that when I do initiate a forum post (and it's rare) it always starts a huge thread of discussion!
After joining HubPages, I applied to write on (actually for) another site. I haven't written for them, because I found it rather difficult to select a topic that I can write about with ease. The point...this site required an application, a resume, and writing samples. While the application , and resume, were a bit much (maybe), it's the writing samples that I think help to distinguish one as a serious writer.
The writer may think tht they're serious, but it is their written work that helps to better determine it
Macy Gray, is one of my favorite musical artists, she has a song called, "Get up, get out, and do Something", and by golly that's what I hope to do about these spammers!
A number of us have been suggesting pre moderation since Panda struck. It seems to be a simple and obvious way to slow down and eliminate the new entries. It might even dissuade them from trying to scam HP in the first place.
It seems like an easy win.
If you are a hub hopper and see the same kind of stuff coming in every day it is a bit discouraging.
When I joined up and submitted my first page I was amazed to see it just got published. No queue, no moderation.
I have joined forums where they moderate the first posts for example. Just seems to make such good sense.
Hi Mark, It absolutely makes sense! I think that fairly new people like myself, get lost in the system (so to speak) because we are all cast the same.
I take my work quite seriously, and don't ever again want it copied by someone claiming it as their own.
Me too Mark. I was surprised how easy it was. Surely this would not be a big job to change it?
Question for admin.
What are we missing here?
Yep! That's pretty much how I see it too!
Of course, what other explanation could there be for allowing junk to be first published, and then sought out by volunteers in hopes they find them all?
I think most of us would rather vet the newcomers than have to flag them later on. HP claims to want quality hubs, so why not show they actually mean it?
OK, bother, starting to get slightly annoyed. Again.
Didn't PaulE publish a hub recently about content responsibility? Quality in other words.
Isn't the Panda thing supposed to be all about quality?
So now spam content doesn't equal $$$$$$$ - it equals Panda slap and user feedback or site blocking?
Therefore - can't believe I need to even type this - in fact can't be bothered.
HP has always touted quality, Mark. Even when they were allowing all of the hubs which caused the slap in the first place. And they are still allowing them to be published at this time. Your idea of why?
This thread has more people who have seen 100 on it than most other threads, so we are all writers here, no pretenders.
I would have thought someone would be along by now to find out what the complaints are, who is making them and why.
Seeing the complaints in other posts, and becoming a victim myself, is what encouraged me to initiate this forum post.
I was minding my business, perusing the internet to check how my articles are ranked, and there it was, one of my articles, ranked one place ahead of MY ACTUAL article. Lawdy Noooooo.....I got hit!
While I was successfully able to have the cyber-perv, and article removed by filing a DMCA report, it got me to thinking of how spammers obtain articles in the first place, And ONE way, is right through sites like HubPages, because of the ease of joining the site.
I personally find this to be a fairly decent idea. Has anyone though considered actually sending the proposal by email to the HubPages team to see how it is received. I know that the subject has been broached several times in the forum, but maybe it would get more attention if it was brought up in a more direct fashion.
Just a thought.
I admit I haven't. I assumed others had.
Maybe nobody did. It may be worth a try.
If they were interested it would be picked up. If for instance I were to say barbecuing is a bit gay it will be noticed in seconds.
Maddie, I think it was, said HP was an open platform and that was pretty much it. You know, the quick terse reply with absolutely no extra info, as usual. They don't seem to want to talk to us very much these days. Could be it our breath?
I just blew into my hand, Randy. Mine seems to be fine. What if we ALL sent emails, same day, same time?
I think the answer is that it ain't going to happen. The money is in numbers. The figleaf is quality.
Figleaf? Now that is something I do have some past experience in seeing put to good use!
I considered submitting an e-mail prior to creating this forum post, but sided with the forum post, because it is seen by moderators.
I decided that one person sending an email, may not have the same strength as a forum full of people who share the same sentiment.
I don't know-there seems to be no difference in the staff reaction whether it is one email or many public queries. At least at this point in time!
On the plus side, this is about the most gentle forum rant I've been part of. Lot of people here who love HP.
Not to get off topic, but congrats on your 100!
Thanks Motown, I was beginning to wonder if anyone had actually noticed. I mean, I only came here to show off my nice new number.
Shoulda just wiggled your tush. More of us would have noticed sooner.
An Animated stick man? Give me another year of learning and I might just be able to wiggle that thing you talked about.
If you can manage to add animation to your writing, I'll bet you'll start making cash right away!
DIY, I hope Mark knew that wasn't a jab! I was teasing him more than anything else!
I'm not generally one who can find it in me to be truly mean.
I viewed it as encouragement rather than anything else. Was already planning my stick animation masterpiece. Stick man falls over.
That's it. Needs work.
Ha! If you can get him to wiggle his tush, and then fall over, you'd be worth a mint!
Wouldn't that be a riot! And then I could figure out how to make MY avatar - and yours - WINK. Why should he get all the attention (and bucks) for a tush-wiggling, falling down avatar???
Agreed, JG! It would be nice though to skip town during the occasional Midwest winter for a week in Australia!
Better check before you grab a ticket to Australia.... Melbourne and the South is as cold as hell and today we are expecting 100kph winds.
You lucky ducks have summer!
Off to hop some hubs.
Earnest, I'm confused. She said WINTER. You know...when it's warm in your half of the world and NOT warm in ours?
Sorry about the bitter cold you're having, and the wind. However, don't waste time on envying summer "up" here, at least not in central Oklahoma. Right now it's 100+ (Fahrenheit) and has been for the better part of the last 2 weeks, with no end in sight. And the wind...! There's a reason "where the wind comes sweeping down the plains" is part of the theme song of the Broadway play and movie "Oklahoma!" It's a rare day without wind here...not a breeze but WIND!
Happy Hub Hopping and weeding out those pesky spammers!
I have only been there in September, and the weather was wonderful.
You poor thing! That sounds uncomfortably hot. I will just turn the heater up a bit and think myself lucky then.
I found the hub hopping was a bit thin. After a while I found one spun article.
Yes, it's even too hot to go outside to throw a few shrimps on the barbie. But the upside is we missed MOST of the snow and ice friends up north got last winter!
Guess I'll have to do a bit of hub hopping too and see if I can find some spun hubs. It's the closest I get to "hunting as a blood sport".
Silly, I would only come during our winter! I'm not a fan of cold either here or below the equator!
Our winters are pretty cold as well, and the snow - UGH. Don't forget though - I live in the Windy City - we are never without wind. The lake ensures that.
The thought of playing on the beach in Australia in January is a pretty pleasant one, I must say!
I agree, Mark. And the PTB do read these forums, I'm sure! I do feel sorta bad for them, though. I'm sure some of them may even have a conscience.
There may even be some in the group who have made suggestions such as these that have gone unheeded. We can't know for certain.
They may even be all gone for the 4th of July and don't really give a big dog f#(k. We can't know for certain.
Drats, I just made a fool of myself saying pretty much the same thing to Earnest. Next time I'll jump to the last post before I open my mouth.
No worries, I'm sure earnest doesn't think you're foolish. Can't imagine anyone else would either!
"Love" may be too strong a word. Determined to hang in as long as necessary to prove ex-hubbers wrong may be more accurate.
Okay, I'm going to TRY to be serious now and get back on topic. I may be wrong, but I'm under the impression Hub Hopping was designed to weed out spammers and low-quality hubs. Of course, it depends on humans in the hollow log - see what you started, Earnest? - personally reviewing flagged hubs.
But as has been discussed here and elsewhere ad nauseum, there doesn't seem to be another solution other than having those same HITHL (humans in the hollow log) review the first hub, or first few hubs, of a new hubber *before* allowing it/them to be published.
Either method requires "eyes on" by a human. IMHO, it behooves ALL of us, as members of the HP community, to quit complaining and do whatever WE can to help the folks in the hollow log.
(Let the stoning begin...)
We can do this until the cows come home,but there's so much stuff out there that we'll never catch up...old hubs and new hubs. Just like our friend from above who claims to have been here three years who has a pile of nicely written hubs which just happen to be duplicated all over the internet. If I hubhop for 10 minutes and hop ten hubs, usually 9 of the hubs, I will flag. And that's with me being generous.
And no stones, I save those for the spinners!
Just done some of my regular crawling through the old stuff, but it is so demotivating, and, as you say DIY, there always seems to be more!
There needs to be a mass delete of the dross, less nit-picking over established hubbers hubs, and protocols put in place to stop new spam and dross coming onto the site.
Clinging to short-term revenue might just cost HP their long term future as a site unless they start looking to the long term
Thanks, DIY, for saving the stones for spinners! And thanks for reminding me that there are plenty of old hubs that should've been flagged and probably still could be if we could find 'em.
The internet is changing fast, has been a fast changing model since its inception. It is the people who realize this who are making the most profit from it. I am finding things that applied less than a year ago are no longer working. I have also seen new things that are working that really suck from a writers point of view.
Some of my early work I consider junk, now that I can look back. When I was editing a few hours ago some of my hubs looked spun. I hope they don't now. One of the things I do is go back and look at what I have published and try to bring them up to date or make them read better.
I honestly don't know if anyone but hub pages would have let me publish the first article I wrote here. I had published before my first article here and had to wait a week to find out if the enzine felt it was worth publishing. They said it was but I now consider it junk too.
For some people it takes time to improve. It's my belief hub pages is here for people like me. Nobody learns in a vacuum. Other writers here, their comments and things they say in forums have been used to improve my writing skills.
Before I came to hub pages the idea of writing an article in 30 minutes and even at first when this challenge was put before me I wanted no part of it. The idea of writing an article in 30 minutes was totally foreign to me. Sorry to say it still is, it took 33 minutes.
It had to be revised and the title has been changed 3 times but its still here and so far its been read more in its first month than any other article I have ever written. It's even had search engine hits. This is what hub pages and the members here have done for my writing self esteem.
This is part of what hub pages was designed to do. Give writers with low self esteem about their writing a chance to grow and improve. It works and I thank them for giving me this chance.
Now what we all see is the problems this brings with it. The spammers, spinners, and some total junk. Before many of the good hubs were removed it didn't hurt us as a community as bad as it does now.
I have no idea if "the powers that be" will make any changes. I also don't know what changes they should make. My suggestion is and has been that if an article is flagged by three people it should be unpublished and held for review.
I agree with you wheelinallover, that being in HubPages helps to build writing skills and develop, if not further develop ones talent and desire to write. I also agree that it takes time. It can take more time for some than others.
I like your suggestion, threee flags, unpublish, and held for review.
I recognize that their are hubbers whose talented eye, can easily determine what is rubbish, a spammer or spinner. I also recognize that every hubber may not have the same discretion, and only think that they've recognized the same.
However much I want to minimize this dreadful activity (spamming), I do want to be fair, cautious and reasonable. Part of my reply to daryl2007, was "...air on the side of caution", but at the same time you don't want (at least not I) innocent casualties caught in the cross-fire.
Of course, every hubber has a different ability to discern crap from quality. Often, it merely takes a brief glance at the way a Hubber uses such words as their, there, and they're, along with the way they string sentences together to tell their potential as a writer on this site.
Those who do not know the difference may have a problem doing so.
Thank you Randy. Your comment is helpful to anyone...well ME, who wants to aid in the fight against spammers.
When the content of one of my articles was copied to another site, I had a conniption fit...it wasn't pretty!
Its really too bad we can't water mark our content like they do photographs. It would make our work much harder to steal. I imagine no one would bother with most of my hubs. They contain part of my life, anyone one who didn't live it couldn't make them work for them.
I think just being given a publish date would help. If someone copies our content and its posted after we publish Google should know its duplicate content and remove it.
I have no idea why I copyright my ads but haven't bothered doing it for my hubs. I do have it on my profile but people are not required to even look at the profile to read an article. I have learned a poorly placed copyright can mess with people searching for articles. Unless carefully placed it messes with ads too.
Best of luck to you getting your personal information removed.
Oh I I had it removed! It was my agenda for the day. Nothing else mattered (well, almost nothing) until I received confirmation that the article and the cyber-perv was removed.
The publishing date is part of the url for articles published on the site where my article was stolen. Therefore the publishing date appears on the article itself, and just above it. It was quite obvious that the content was copied, but just in case, I referenced when the first comment was made.
I agree whole-heartedly that a publishing date on the hub itself would help. I think it could serve as a possible deterrent to spammers.
Like you, most of my hubs contain part of my life, anyone who would want them is either crazy as I, or crazier for wanting to even be me! The copied hub, was a matter that was of particular intterest to me. This is the only one of my hubs, that has nothing to do with my life or lifestyle.
You have very interesting ideas wheelinallover. I can tell that you're quite passionate about a resolution, and I truly appreciate your input.
how long does it take for Google to answer a DCMA complaint?
it been two days for me. The owner of the offending sight told me to relax that they didn't know how it got on there but they'd take care of it..I don't think so I managed to find a website company linked to it, but thought i should wait for Google to act.
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