Digital Consultant at Accenture
02 February 2010 13:41pm
many thanks for your response!
I didn't really doubt that the comment was spam, we're used to spam postings from various countries offering anything from software to diet pills, etc.
The User Experience is certainly the most important factor in all of this.
Might need to check our T&Cs again, thanks for the tip, I think I haven't checked them for a while.
We use ExpressionEngine and there is an API for the TypePad AntiSpam service you mentioned, I'm going to check it out. Luckily, being reasonably niche, moderating the discussion forum is not a full-time job yet!
I guess what I was a little disappointed with, is that a digital agency such as Agency2 (which seems to have earned itself some form of reputation as "the UK's leading social media agency") would resort to cheap SEO tactics, which I believe are entirely unethical.
I imagine most clients don't mind the spamming, or how they get better google ranking - unless their reputation is on the line. There an interesting thread about comment spamming on a blog by a New York attorney. Here, it had some more serious repercussions for the agency.
Thanks again for the tips!
Chief Executive at agency:2 The Social Media Agency
02 February 2010 16:12pm
We concur with your views that
spamming and spammers should not be tolerated. To this end we are careful to
ensure that we do not interact on forums or any other social media platforms in
any way that is not honest, ethical, legal and of genuine value to the users.
The post made on your forum was certainly
not intended as spam, it was a genuine post made by agency:2 on behalf of our
client, intended to help any of the members of your forum who may be
considering making an investment into HR software in 2010. This post was placed
in the “Professional Services, Consultancies & Agents” section,
which is defined as a place to share advice on “where to go for professional
services such as Banks, Chartered Accountants, Freelance Cashiers, IT
Consultants, Recruitment Agents or any other services”. I can assure you that
this post was only put up to add value to your members, as it linked through to
a free webinar with the benefits of a new HR system.
We had a conversation with you in
December and it was agreed that the post would be removed by yourself as the
moderator which you elected not to do.
I hope this has cleared up any
outstanding confusion or queries you may have over this issue. If you would
like to discuss it further, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
03 February 2010 13:36pm
Thanks for your reply. I think many people will disagree with you, that the post was not intended as spam.
A similar post with the same link was posted on pretty much the same day on various discussion forums (for actuaries, accountants, finance professionals, hr professionals, and our legal forum) - all posts have the same or similar keywords and the link.
The posts also don't say anything useful, after all, you're posting in a discussion forum. Does your post on behalf of CIBER encourage discussion? Does it even answer the questions you pose as a teaser/ header?
As far as I am concerned you can sustitute "HR Software- What it can do for you" with "Diet Pills - what they can do for you" - and amend the text with a few other keywords and "bingo" you have the text for an entirely different product.
Let's give it a go:
"If employed in its most basic manifestation, diet pills can assist
in the delivery of benefits for the overweight person - integrated weight management for the busy professional using the latest clinical research and so reduce
dieting errors and create efficiencies. In addition, these pills can reduce health problems and issues by enforcing consistent,
accurate, and auditable processes for these weight loss functions."
Not many words changed, but your posts are so generic that they don't add any value and can be substituted for just about anything.
My audience would like to know what size law firms these HR systems are for? What experience does CIBER have in the legal market? Which systems can the HR software integrate with? Any technical information, SQL support, etc.?
Have any of your spam posts had a reply posted to them? No they haven't, because they aren't "discussions", but they are posted in a discussion forum.
Why are your posts signed by Mandy, Isobel and Amanda? Were they posted by 3 different people, or on behalf of 3 different employees of CIBER?
To me, and to many others (including members of this forum) you have spammed public discussion forums which are intended for discussions, not plastering adverts and for use in unethical link building practises.
When you say we had a conversation - I didn't get much in terms of a conversation going with you account manager - probably because I was ranting. Nothing was agreed, I mentioned I was tempted to remove the post, but I elected to see what Agency2 would do after having been informed that I considered the post spam.
Your company elected to leave the post up and not reply to any public discussion on the issue until yesterday.
Your company removed the spam post only when we posted a reply in our forum (which triggered an email to you) linking to the discussion here on econsultancy and a blog post on our website entitled "Just because it doesn’t mention viagra, it doesn’t mean it’s not spam".
And I trust that Ashley's post encouraged you to finally post a reply?!
As you can tell, there are still many questions regarding your post and Agency2's ethics and methods.
I suggest if you're hoping to help people find an HR system, you may be more interested in the discussions in "Practice/Case Management, Accounting Systems and other Software" with a recent post on Payroll Software.
Finally, as members of this forum clearly think that you are spamming other discussions forums, will you have the decency to remove the offending posts from other forums too? I see a few of them have removed them as spam already anyway...
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