Locking Out the Social Media Blackhats

Locking Out the Social Media Blackhats

By John McTigueOct 8 /2009

Yesterday was just the latest incident of some idiots spamming a Twitter stream with pornography. I'm sure there were thousands of incidents like this one. My question is why? I'll expand on that question and recommend some ways of getting rid of these irritants.

It happens all the time, in social media sites, in e-mail, on your phone, on buildings and bridges. Some idiot thinks it's worth his time and effort to spam the rest of us or worse, create something truly offensive. Why? To hurt or annoy everyone tuned in? To make a statement of some kind? The kind of person who would resort to spam and pornography is either:social media blackhat

  1. Evil - in this case we just need to find these people and send them to prison or worse (where available).
  2. Bored - in this case we just need to keep frustrating them so they'll go play elsewhere.
  3. Stupid - same treatment as bored.
  4. Ignorant - maybe there's a shred of hope here, but I doubt it.

Is there anything we can do to lock out these perp's? Yes there is, and yesterday's exercise was a great example of people rising up to can the spammers.

  1. Report them - if you're on Twitter, send their tweet to @spam. Yesterday's perp's were rapidly kicked out of Twitter thanks to angry recipients who did the right thing.
  2. If you use Twitter by itself and you receive spammy or pornish followers, block them. Then report them to @spam.
  3. If you use Tweetdeck and you receive spammy or pornish tweets, you can block them and report them at the same time. Here's some more good advice for Twitter.
  4. Facebook is also a spammer haven. There are lots of different types of Facebook spam. Here's a good discussion. For specific advice on blocking Facebook spam, try the official Facebook help page on spam and attacks.
  5. I have not seen much, if any, spam on LinkedIn, but I'm sure it's out there. If you go to the Help section and search on "spam" there are quite a few answers.
Bottom line - don't let these bozos get away with it. Be proactive. If we can't get a handle on spam and porno ourselves, our social networking sites will need to be even more regulated and monitored. It's up to us. 


The Author

John McTigue

With over 30 years of business and marketing experience, John loves to blog about ideas and trends that challenge inbound marketers and sales and marketing executives. John has a unique way of blending truth with sarcasm and passion with wit. You can connect with John via LinkedIn and Twitter.