Congratulations Spammers -- you just made craigslist useless...

41 replies
It now seems impossible to post an ad -- even a just plain legitimate ad -- on CL.

Why do I say that?

Because here's what now happens if one does post an ad on CL...

One will get BOGUS responses (spam). And there's no way to tell (before opening), which email responses are real, and which are bogus.

The problem is now SO BAD, posting an ad on CL definitely WILL yield BOGUS incoming emails -- it is a SURE THING.

So... congratulations spammers, you just rendered CL useless -- or at least made it a big pain in the butt to use CL.

Spam sucks. Spammers are parasites.

-- TW
#congratulations #craigslist #made #spammers #useless
  • Profile picture of the author Tyrus Antas
    And people wonder why marketers are universally hated...

    Tyrus
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  • Profile picture of the author usualcliche
    CL has went downhill in a really bad way these last few years. I honestly rarely visit CL anymore just merely to avoid the headache and hassle of dealing with it heh. I agree spammers are just rar!
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  • Profile picture of the author onera
    Spammers are working on numbers. They think if they can post 1 million ads and 0001% response, they can make it. But my question is where do they get all the time to spam all over the web. Are they using automated software to post to CL?
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    • Profile picture of the author Ryan700
      Originally Posted by onera View Post

      Spammers are working on numbers. They think if they can post 1 million ads and 0001% response, they can make it.
      Like with all good things they become useless after time. Remember Usenet? Is it even around any more? What I don't get is if there 1,000,000 spammers posting 1,000,000 ads and it's all a numbers game who is responding to these ads? I think the odds on this are very high that you won't be making any money. Just go to Twitter and you'll find lot's of people who bought Twitter Traffic Machine that are trying to recoup their investment or are bypassing the buying of the product to sell it through their CB affiliate link. I bet I've seen that ad about 500 times. Who's making money on this? The vendor.
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  • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
    onera...

    Spammers posting on CL is bad enough.

    What I'm talking about is even worse -- because it's unavoidable, and because it harvests the email addresses of INNOCENT people just trying to sell just-plain-used-stuff on CL.

    It's spammers *RESPONDING* to posts (ads) with spam designed to harvest the email addresses of 'regular' users of CL.

    That's what is making CL a total MINEFIELD for innocent users -- to the point where it's just about too much trouble to use CL at all.
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    • Profile picture of the author JamesFarias
      You are definitely right about the spammers on CL...on both sides of the equation. I used to post ads on CL for one of my business opportunities through a single pva every 48 hours or so but the number of marketing emails I got was at least 10 to 1 when compared to the number of legitimate emails I got.

      To answer your question onera:

      But my question is where do they get all the time to spam all over the web. Are they using automated software to post to CL?
      Spammer have 2 types of tools they can use to spam CL. There are email scrapers that allow a marketer to harvest hundreds (if not thousands) of emails from the site at a time. Some of the more sophisticated ones can even tell the difference between a real email and on of the CL cloaked emails and omit them if you like. This is the type of tool that helps spammers do what -- TW started this thread about.

      The other type of tool is an auto poster which would allow a spammer to automate posting ads on CL.
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  • Profile picture of the author billyboy
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      I haven't used this since my mlm days, but it might be time to shed the mothballs...

      Take a trick from the S&M folks, and use a 'safeword' in your ad. Tell human readers to put a word that wouldn't normally appear into the body of the email. Then set up a dedicated email address, then set up a filter so that any message with the safeword in it gets filtered into a folder and anything without it gets deleted.
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      • Profile picture of the author JoMo
        Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

        ...
        Take a trick from the S&M folks, and use a 'safeword' in your ad. Tell human readers to put a word that wouldn't normally appear into the body of the email. Then set up a dedicated email address, then set up a filter so that any message with the safeword in it gets filtered into a folder and anything without it gets deleted.

        That is a good idea and hilarious all at the same time.
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  • Profile picture of the author Troy_Phillips
    I only use cl to send to a cap page . You don't have to use email feature because if they want to talk to you all you need to do is opt in. If they start spamming me through the ar I can block them completely.
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    • Profile picture of the author lilhay
      Originally Posted by Troy_Phillips View Post

      I only use cl to send to a cap page . You don't have to use email feature because if they want to talk to you all you need to do is opt in. If they start spamming me through the ar I can block them completely.
      Troy,

      I use the same tactic. Also I hide my email from which I am posting to avoid spam.
      I recommend to get legit responses from Craigslist is to leave a voice mail number
      or your your direct line.
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  • Profile picture of the author Domenick King
    Thanks for the heads up, I've been wanting to check out CL for some time now, never got around to it, guess that was a good thing huh.

    Peace, Prosperity & Internet Marketing
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  • Profile picture of the author Edgar Moreno
    I used CL way back when it was fresh but now its just a joke. Only thing its useful for now is illegal stuff, other than its virtually useless or takes a long time to find anything.
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    • Profile picture of the author Troy_Phillips
      Originally Posted by efusjonrawenergy View Post

      I used CL way back when it was fresh but now its just a joke. Only thing its useful for now is illegal stuff, other than its virtually useless or takes a long time to find anything.
      So you are admitting to buying illegal stuff on a forum that at the time I logged in had around 500 people reading . Hey you admitted it and I am not giving you a refund on my illegal stuff anymore :-)
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      TW,

      Part of that is the whole class of "Craig's List Leads" software. You know... The stuff they sell guaranteeing that you'll get "highly targeted leads - people who are already looking for your product or something like it."

      The first time I saw one of those, I knew what was coming.

      Another part of that flood is phishing schemes. A LOT of people looking for work are being asked to fill out "applications" that include everything someone could need to steal your identity. I wouldn't be surprised if the "leads" software was being used to further those schemes.

      Nasty stuff.


      Paul

      PS, to John: He handed the vendor a $20 bill. When he asked for change, the vendor said, "Change comes from within."
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  • Profile picture of the author George Wright
    I stopped trying to buy or sell anything on CL for this very reason.

    What is really funny and of more immediate irritation are the Warrior Forum spammers. In the past 48 hours I've seen articles published on the main forum that are taken from blogs and presented as "real posts." With other members responding as if no one notices.

    One liners to get up to 30 so the spammers can do WSOs is common now.

    Most annoying is the technique being used even in this thread on spam. One liners that don't even make sense are the worst. Thank goodness for the click this and even this post will go away

    CL spammers, email spammers, WF spammers. Not good.

    George Wright
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  • Profile picture of the author Botwiz
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    • Profile picture of the author blackhawkup
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      Originally Posted by Botwiz View Post

      Since when did morals come into play when marketing online. Tap into those billions of page views and make some money. Your all idiotic if your not already. I know and talk with ppl and software owners that are making 100,000's of dollars marketing online.

      Spamming is only a perspective, everyone wants things they don't need. Your all victim of it.

      i have to agree...i come from the BH side and i made thousands of dollars from craigslist alone..i have since then converted to pure WH and im a total noob at it.....

      anyway you cant knock someones hustle, yes craigslist is a piece of $%^& now, but just imagine if you had thought of a way to leverage that site back in its hayday!!!

      everyone needs to eat and this is the internet, nothing is permanent there are a plethora of other sites out their like craigslist (if you were really trying to sell stuff)...

      all im saying is that it is what it is. you get yours i get mine, me worrying about people not being able to sell "stuff" isnt putting food on the table, you gotta do what works for you...
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      • Profile picture of the author jamawebinc
        I've sold a bunch of things on craigs list recently. I don't find it useless at all.

        Of course I get the customary B.S. answer to my add, but craigslist warns you to beware of scams (like people wanting to pay by money order).

        One thing I had listed 4 times before it got and interest. and then after I sold it, within 2 days I had 5 requests to see if it was till available.

        That's just how it is.

        Of course, what I am talking about is selling tangible products, not using craigs list for marketing purposes.

        I think that's what it was intended to be used for any just about everyone who i know thinks of craigslist in this way...They place to buy or sell that hard to find or used item.

        Many people who I know have great success selling things on there.
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      • Profile picture of the author John Hixson
        Originally Posted by rpjackson View Post

        i have to agree...i come from the BH side and i made thousands of dollars from craigslist alone..i have since then converted to pure WH and im a total noob at it.....

        anyway you cant knock someones hustle, yes craigslist is a piece of $%^& now, but just imagine if you had thought of a way to leverage that site back in its hayday!!!

        everyone needs to eat and this is the internet, nothing is permanent there are a plethora of other sites out their like craigslist (if you were really trying to sell stuff)...

        all im saying is that it is what it is. you get yours i get mine, me worrying about people not being able to sell "stuff" isnt putting food on the table, you gotta do what works for you...
        I hate that attitude. Basically you are saying 'I'll do what i want now leave me alone' even when it is breaking the rules, laws or whatever?

        What if you are getting yours by cheating someone out of getting theirs
        - should it then be ignored?

        No, worrying about this stuff isn't putting food on the table. But that is a point only for people who are struggling to put food on the table... once you start looking beyond that level of income to the levels where people can make choices over income streams and have the time and money to invest in helping protect other people then that attitude falls apart.

        Saying 'go somewhere else if you don't like it' (as you were trying to do with your comment about a plethora of other sites) doesnt work when combined with

        anyway you cant knock someones hustle, yes craigslist is a piece of $%^& now, but just imagine if you had thought of a way to leverage that site back in its hayday!!!
        If you don't fight spammers, and the defend your ability to 'get yours' (I do hate those phrases) then you end up losing ground, virtual real estate, money and the ability to put food on the table.

        Fighting back aaginst spammers is a worthwile endeavour as far as I am concerned. Just because something works doesn't mean it should be used.
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    • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
      Originally Posted by jkiley View Post

      Don't need to post when you can just read - look at my signature.
      Dont bump old posts to spam us with your ****.
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  • Profile picture of the author Melkor
    So, this is what the Warrior forum has come to? Scammers and spammers openly bragging about being criminals abusing the commons and nobody calling them out for it?

    Christ. You guys are using the same excuse as the crack dealer on the corner and the heroin pusher in the school yard - I gotta get paid. And operate at about the same moral level.
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    • Profile picture of the author jkiley
      Originally Posted by Melkor View Post

      So, this is what the Warrior forum has come to? Scammers and spammers openly bragging about being criminals abusing the commons and nobody calling them out for it?

      Christ. You guys are using the same excuse as the crack dealer on the corner and the heroin pusher in the school yard - I gotta get paid. And operate at about the same moral level.
      I agree...how to report these guys?
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      • Profile picture of the author Kay King
        You don't report someone because they have an opinion you don't like. You just note who it is....

        Since when did morals come into play when marketing online.
        That person - and others along the same lines who responded - just labeled themselves as having "adjustable ethics". Helps you know who to avoid working with or buying from, doesn't it?

        CL is a mess and I haven't been there for years....for any reason.

        kay
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    • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
      Originally Posted by Melkor View Post

      You guys are using the same excuse as the crack dealer on the corner and the heroin pusher in the school yard - I gotta get paid. And operate at about the same moral level.
      Morality is a luxury. It's all well and good that you have it. Understand that others don't, and that they need to eat just as much as you do.

      Just don't do a JV with them.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rezbi
    Originally Posted by -- TW View Post

    It now seems impossible to post an ad -- even a just plain legitimate ad -- on CL.

    Why do I say that?

    Because here's what now happens if one does post an ad on CL...

    One will get BOGUS responses (spam). And there's no way to tell (before opening), which email responses are real, and which are bogus.

    The problem is now SO BAD, posting an ad on CL definitely WILL yield BOGUS incoming emails -- it is a SURE THING.

    So... congratulations spammers, you just rendered CL useless -- or at least made it a big pain in the butt to use CL.

    Spam sucks. Spammers are parasites.

    -- TW
    It's not just CL.

    I'm getting so many spam now I asked one of the people who sent me (one of many) spams, where they got my email.

    They replied my details are on a list they bought.

    Now, considering any and everything I've ever signed up for have promised NEVER to sell my details, it's obvious at least some of them are telling porkies.

    When I say I won't share emails with ANYONE else, I mean it.

    I guess there are some who are lying through their teeth.
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  • Profile picture of the author MichaelHiles
    Facebook Marketplace

    It's pretty hard to spam there without getting your FB account nuked.
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  • Profile picture of the author FrankPinch
    totally agree, i used CL to search for stuff and post my offers in my hometown, it's now ridiculous! I don't understand how a company like CL can invest so much in keeoing it spam free and can't come up with anything good, on the contrary, it's getting worst and worst. I don't use them anymore.
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  • Profile picture of the author Gail Sober
    What gets me is when I actually try to BUY something on Craigslist. I know placing your own ad will draw spam but when browsing through the For Sale section, you'd expect it to be relatively spam free, but guess not.

    The last three things I wanted to purchase ended up with me receiving and email saying that they had already sold it along with a sponsor link for the product somewhere else.

    From now on, I'll only initiate contact if they provide their phone number in the ad and it's a local number.
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  • Profile picture of the author jammer_jaminski
    CL needs to take some steps to not allow the email harvesting to happen... like have a visual/type in what you see type form to be able to get an email. How hard is that?

    It must be too easy a target for the spammers to resist.

    Its getting like eBay, even though it is possible to work for you the hassles of it all make it not worthwhile.
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  • Profile picture of the author alcyonemktg
    I made $600 yesterday on Craigslist selling legitimate items and did not receive one bogus response. I'm not ready to call it useless just yet
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  • Profile picture of the author David@Lurn
    I personally have had a lot of success selling stuff on craigslist and have lucked out without any negative issues.

    But its all about what to look for - being in the IM business - I am always suspicious when viewing responses to my ads and can spot a scammer fairly easily. Like for example if they mention the word "shipping" - bam - done.

    But I am still amazed when I hear friends who are not in the online industry and who I'd think would be able to spot a scam tell me "OMG I sold that couch - the guy is sending me a check and I have to give him some of it back but hes giving me more than I was asking....blah blah blah" - I just start shaking my end and sit them down to explain.

    But I feel that CL is still usefull and has a purpose and can be salvaged once the power and tech is put in to eradicate the fake listings and the knowledge is given to the sellers on what to look for in a response.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rob Anderson
    i9 was on my twitter profile today and went into my list of followers and found that there was about 30 of exactly the same follow me request but each with a different name.
    did they think that i wouldn't notice?
    at least i was following manually, but auto follow would not have picked it up.
    the worst thing is that spammers do not think they are spammers.
    they think that they are simply taking advantage of an obvious gap.

    sadly we will never be rid of them, they are like drunk drivers, no thought.
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  • Profile picture of the author MichaelHiles
    It's a pretty easy fix actually if CL would actually do it.

    Eliminate the ability to post without creating an account. Tie the response to an internal messaging system that doesn't require email.

    Give the users the ability to block other accounts.

    a la Facebook
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  • Profile picture of the author Lou Diamond
    Hello,
    all of the girls on Craigslist want roses,whats up with that?
    Why would they want so many roses?
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    Something new soon.

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  • Profile picture of the author crissanteiro
    I just never show my email address anymore in my ads at CL, and that takes care of the spamming issues.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mohammad Afaq
    If it was not spam then it would have been so easy to make money online and we wouldn't have all these rules and stuff everywhere.

    No matter what you do there always are good people and bad people and bad people make the world a worse place for good people.
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    • Profile picture of the author brunski57
      Like many things for FREE, people start to abuse it, (just like some government programs).

      Maybe it is time for CL to charge a small fee... I would pay.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bob Willoughby
    It is not just CL. People are ruining everything. Everytime we are inconvenienced it is because someone tried to abuse the system. Remember when you did not have to take your shoes off before you took a flight!
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  • Profile picture of the author clawHAMMER
    I read this thread and I've had just enough cocktails to chime in...

    I spend to much time on Craigslist myself, somewhat by choice and by necessity.

    I've sold a bunch of stuff, from bicycles to a couple of vehicles to several real estate properties. All legit and on the up and up. I mostly market local real estate for a private investment company right now and anything else I manage to peddle is some extra pocket change. Never enough though in this day and age. And of course being predominately in real estate right now it's no wonder I'm broke and can still afford an internet connection.

    I never had an issue with spam until I started posting multiple times a day with several real estate properties in this investors portfolio for the past 11 months. Certain days I get inundated with spam for no explainable reason.

    Right now I have 4 properties listed up on CL since y'day and this AM I woke up to 36 spam emails. Gibberish. They actually fill out the general form on our website and I get the enquiry. I don't get it. Just a bunch of alphabetical random letters.

    Spam in the CL real estate sections is rampant. Not only citywide but statewide and nationwide. It's much worse now than even 3 mos ago IMO. Approx 15% of the ads in any given cities RE section on CL is bogus to attempt to collect your personal information, as Mr Paul Meyers says above in post #14. That's it. Phishing.

    Phishing to collect your info. They have no properties, the same photos are used in many of the same ads in cities all over the US. You'll find the same ads and photos in Greensboro, NC as you will in Central NJ and Detroit, MI and St. Louis, MO.

    I've emailed their ads (using a throwaway addy) and I get a canned email response back with an attached application they want me to fill out. I've called the #'s they post just to see. South Africa and Nigeria are just 2 of the locations behind some of these postings in the CL RE sections fyi.

    I flag them all day every day and within the hour their back up there with a couple more variations. Like clockwork the automated posts show up not only in my local CL but statewide starting at 8am then 10am then noon then randomly from there till 3pm where another batch get posted then randomly till 6pm where another batch of spam ads gets posted and randomly till about 10pm where they wind down. 7 days a week. Like someone else here stated they go for the numbers. if 01% of the ads get someone to fill out their app and give them their personal info, cha-ching. I've been doing this long enough now to be on top of the situation.

    What sucks is when we finally get a nice prospect for one of our houses, they've been scammed and ripped off unsuspectingly by one of these spam scammers and are very defensive when it comes to their personal information. We've been in business locally for 13 years (my investor has) and we're local. Yet people often get an attitude when it comes down to asking for more of their personal info like we're trying to rip them off or something. That's because we've found out they've been ripped off and scammed previously by some online con artist marketing on CL.

    In real estate, we need your basic info before we even show you a home so we know before we leave the office you're perqualifed, it comes with the territory. If you want to buy/rent a house or apt, nobody is going to sell/rent you a home without some idea of who you are and what you can bring to the table. And a job.

    So your personal info ends up being a catch-22 and the spam scammers are jumping all over that now that so many people are in transition because of the economy and the foreclosure crisis.

    If I wandered of track a bit in my ramblings here, sorry. It made sense in my head before I typed it.

    So I guess the moral of the story is....If people aren't on their toes they'll get hosed on CL in more ways than one. It's truly "buyer beware" in the strictest meaning of that phrase no matter what it is you're buying. And be prepared to possibly get spammed alot from foreign countries if you're running multiple ads on there selling your wares.

    Cheers \_/
    Glenn
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