A new kind of spam: Developers pretending to be users, “reviewing” their own products, and asking bloggers to post about itDecember 28, 2010 24 Email article | Print article
We see spam in our inbox. We see spam on forums. But have you seen forum spam… in your inbox? Lately I have been receiving this new kind of spam, and have decided to share it with the world, so we can all laugh at and ridicule the spammers who attempt it.
Recently I have been getting e-mails from “users” of software products, telling me how much they enjoy said products and would like to review them:
I am a user of [pathetic company], and I have used their product [worthless program], I think I am really glad to see this good video converter. However, there are still some disadvantages of this products, here I have written a review about this product and I hope you will help me release them on your websites, I am sure it will bring a lot of guests to your site. If you can approve my request, I hope you can send me an email and tell me what I should do next so that I can submit my articles on your site. Big thanks! I hope this article will be in accordance with your standard, if there have some problems on my article, I hope you will contact me so that I will improve it. I am looking forward to your reply.
Best wishes for you
The e-mails go on to provide me with a “review” so I can post it on dotTech:
[Worthless program] Review
[Worthless program] is really the nice software for video/audio files converting. It is the best one I’ve ever used.
The [worthless program] is easy to control (just a few steps to run a conversion process), the user guide is unnecessary (at least for me). The conversion speed of the converter is fast, a minutes video just take me a few minutes to convert it over. Besides, the background working is nice; when the converting process is running, I can still do some other stuffs. But the dark interface I don’t like it. Black is cool, but not this one. It looks worldliness.
About the formats issue, the [worthless program] is really powerful. It’s said to support over 150 formats. I didn’t check it one by one, but I tried some popular video formats such as AVI, MP4, FLV, WMV and MKV; and the converter worked well with everyone. And the quality of the output videos is nice, even it isn’t in HD standard.
Besides, the [worthless program] is really an all in one video converter. It supports to convert videos to almost all the portable devices. The [worthless program] is equal to iPhone video converter + iPod video converter + Nokia video converter + BlackBerry video converter + … But the price of it is just $29.95. It’s really a worthy deal.
About the video editing, although the [worthless program] provides some advanced functions (merge, clip, crop and effect); it’s not enough. Watermark and headlines are not supported yet. But I think it’s the basic content even with some more edit functions. I wish it could be added later.
But in conclusion, the [worthless program] is nice and worth trying.
The product page is: [Worthless program's product homepage]
If you need to check this product, you can use this url and it will bring you to the product page.
(Note the above example e-mail has been censored using [pathetic company], [worthless program], and [spamming punk] to protect the identity of the not-so-innocent.)
At first glance, the e-mails may seem legitimate; but they clearly aren”t. Seriously, I don’t know if these developers think we bloggers are dumb or what. If you are going to try to try to trick a blogger into posting about your product, you can at least make a half-decent attempt at it; I was able to determine the spammy nature of the e-mails within, oh I don’t know, 30 seconds. However, I do have to give these spammers some credit – their hard work is not in vain: I have seen these “reviews” posted on some blogs that shall-not-be-named.
Flame away in the comments below.