The Definition of Spam

Spam can bring down your website faster than a speeding bullet, but what is spam? Originally, spam referred to unwanted emails. We all hate the tons of email we receive day after day trying to get us to buy that or click this. I can't go a day without someone trying to steal my personal information so they can get into my bank account. Does everyone else get the fake paypal emails? They look just like paypal emails, but usually if you look at the links they have ip numbers instead of paypal.com in the address. Obviously, letters from Nigeria, fake paypal emails, and the host of other either crooked or just plain annoying emails can clearly be defined as spam. Of course, email newsletters that have been subscribed to are wanted and would not be spam. I love getting my daily webmaster newsletters. They are great for helping me stay on top of what is going on in the website development world.

Another type of spam, that believe it or not webmasters still employ, is hidden text. This is obviously a bad idea. Google's guidelines clearly state "Avoid hidden text or hidden links". Now to be fair sometimes it's hard to keep all hidden links off of your site if you are using Microsoft FrontPage or other similar editors. The newer 2003 version of FrontPage incorporates the split screen, which makes getting rid of hidden text much easier. The older versions tend to leave hidden links behind in the HTML code after you delete the text. I have recently found tons of hidden text links everywhere on my sites. So, if you have this problem I can feel your pain.

Everything that is a bad SEO practice isn't necessarily spam. Just because Google changes it's algorithm tomorrow doesn't mean all practices banned were actually spam. Sometimes, I feel that many webmasters let search engines dictate what they call spam. For example, linking to your own site from another one of your sites. Is that spam? Some might say you are attempting to alter search engine results and thus you are a spammer. I do have the right to advertise my sites or other sites on my own website, after all. Currently, from other webmaster articles and from what I've seen personally, if your link text is the same everywhere then Google will not allow you those keywords. This has put an end to the Google bomb, but it's unfortunate side effect is the penalization of webmasters adding a link to their own sites from another site. For example, say I have a site about TV DVDs and another one featuring a entertainment blog. It's very simple to enter a link one time into a text file using an ssi include or other similar method that might say "Entertainment Blog" linking back to my blog site. This example populates all my sites at once and thus now I've given everybody interested in my DVD site a little ad to my blog site. Google might penalize the blog site, and so you lose hits from Google. Thankfully, so far Yahoo hasn't taken this step. I guess we could blame the guys who started the Google bombing, but I for one disagree with Google on their method. My only choice in linking back to myself now is to forget adding a standard link in the menu, and put a link back to the blog site one page at a time with different link text and perhaps linking to different pages within the blog site.

Now pop-ups to me go into the category of spam. Anything that is not asked for by the visitor, like a pop-up or email should definitely be classified as spam. Of course, there aren't any penalties for pop-ups from search engines.

Google apparently is targeting affiliate sites now as well. On one hand, I don't blame Google for not wanting exact duplicates in their search results, but their basic rules should still apply. Taking out a site just because it has affiliate links is really not a fair practice. Someone who takes months and perhaps even years of their time to create, maintain, and promote a site, deserves to make money just as much as the big dogs, as long as they are not using deceptive practices. Which brings me back to the main point. What is the definition of spam? Certainly, trying to earn a honest dollar on the net by offering affiliate links shouldn't be considered spam. But sites trying to promote one set of keywords and offer something else on their page should be considered spammers. It's the unwanted promotion tactics and deceptive practices that are now and will always be true spam. Is it spam to offer a rearrangement of Amazon's products? No, not if your title tag says books, and I find books on your page.

Webmaster of the new Webmaster Tips featuring website articles, web hosts, domain registrars, free scripts, and more.

In The News:

Feds set to crack down on robocalls, let carriers block spammers by default  Chicago TribuneThe Federal Communications Commission said Wednesday that it will vote in June on whether to allow to carriers block spam calls by default.
T&G Poll: Do you use spam or robocall-blocker apps on your phone?  Worcester TelegramNew measures by U.S. regulators could help thwart some of the billions of robocalls received in the U.S. The Federal Communications Commission said ...
Apps to block robocalls and unwanted text messages  WSMV Nashville(WSMV) - Robocalls and text messages can be annoying and you may be wondering how to get them to stop. Thankfully, there are many apps on the App Store ...
How to stop robocalls — and even get some revenge  The Providence JournalRobocalls, those computer-generated shysters, are making some people stop answering the phone altogether. But a variety of apps and phone services can ...
Google intros CallJoy virtual customer service agent for SMBs  ZDNetCallJoy is a cloud-based phone agent and spam blocker that aims to help SMBs measure, automate and improve customer *service*.
Tech Tip: Network Security Can Secure Your Reputation, Too  GeorgetownerYour organization needs to take network security as seriously as possible. While it might seem tempting to just implement security solutions and hide behind ...
School Officials Who Failed to Act on Report of Sexual Abuse Say it Went to Spam Folder  Voice of San DiegoIn 2016, a volunteer in Mar Vista High's JROTC program emailed seven Sweetwater Union High School District administrators with evidence that an instructor ...
Verizon will offer free spam protection to all of its customers  The VergeVerizon announced that it will offer free spam and robocall protection to its subscribers. The company says it has blocked nearly 1 billion spam calls to date, and ...
Verizon launches free service for identifying and blocking spam calls  The VergeVerizon is taking new steps to combat the unrelenting nuisance of spam calls. The leading US carrier has rolled out its free call filter *service* to both Android and ...
In 2019 Here's How To Stop And Block Robocalls, Spam, And Unknown Calls On iPhone, Android  ForbesRobocalls are at epidemic levels. Here are some ways to get a handle on them in the new year. And one way to stop them cold. Scammers have gotten craftier, ...
Verizon is releasing a new app next month to fight robocalls  BGRWe cover the widespread -- and still growing -- problem of robocalls and spam calls pretty extensively, in part because the people behind this seem to get more ...
Verizon Set To Offer Free App For Blocking Robocalls, New Tech To Combat Spam  Forbes[UPDATE] Verizon is getting ready to offer a free robocall blocking app at the end of this month, as it steps up efforts to combat the growing plague of spam calls.
How to battle spam on your landline phone  The VergeYou probably use a cellphone for most (or all) of your calls, assuming you make voice calls at all. However, if you still have a landline, it can be hard to battle the ...
Verizon's free spam filter and anti-robocall tool are live  EngadgetVerizon (which owns Engadget's parent company, Verizon Media) has opened access to a free version of its spam filter and is rolling out its anti-robocall tech....
Die, robocalls, die: A how-to guide to stop spammers and exact revenge  The Washington PostWe tested six apps and services to find the best way to fight back against spam bots, telemarketers and fraud.
Verizon Now Offering Free Call Filtering to Block Telemarketers  TidBITSUnder pressure from the US Federal Communications Commission, Verizon now offers a free call-filtering *service*, but it's just a band-aid on the spam-call ...
How to Block Robotexts and Spam Messages  PCMag.comSpammers try to trick you with text messages as well as phone calls and emails. Here's how to deal w.
Nine apps to block spam calls and text messages in Android  AndroidGuysIf you want to block spam calls and text messages on your Android phone, here is a list of 9 Android apps to identify and block those call in your phone.
How to stop robocalls spamming your phone  TechCrunchNo matter what your politics, beliefs, or even your sports team, we can all agree on one thing: robocalls are the scourge of modern times. These unsolicited ...
Free Verizon App For Blocking Robocalls Vs Paid -- How Apps Stack Up To Stop Spam  ForbesHow does Verizon free "call filtering" stack up against the paid version? And what's the best overall robocall blocking strategy? Read on. Here is a Verizon chart ...
How to stop robocalls, block numbers on your iPhone, Android and even landline  USA TODAYYou have a whole arsenal of smartphone tools at your disposal: Block numbers, Do Not Disturb mode, and apps can help end this telephonic pestilence.
How to Block and Report Spam Calls and Text Messages  The New York TimesUnwanted calls and spam texts are annoying, but you can do something about them. Here's how to block and report them so they won't bother you again.
How To Completely Block, Stop Robocalls, Spam, Scams On iPhone, Android  ForbesWhile apps provide some level of protection against robocalls, spam, and scams, they're not bulletproof. When all else fails, try this nuclear option.
Here's how to block robocalls on iPhone and Android  Fox NewsUnwanted calls are often harmless but some are after your credit card information, IDs or passwords. All are a distraction and a waste of your time.
How to Block Robocalls and Spam Calls  PCMag.comAre you getting too many phone calls from spammers and telemarketers? You can take several steps to.
TRAI DND App on iOS: Here's how to use the new app to block spam  BGR IndiaWith TRAI's spam blocker app finally on iOS, here's how you can use it to reduce the amount of unwanted calls and SMSes. - TRAI DND App on iOS: Here's how ...
RoboKiller v. Nomorobo: Which robocall blocker should iOS users choose?  TechRepublicCall blockers have made significant advancements, but so have telemarketers' tactics for getting you to pick up. See how call blockers RoboKiller and Nomorobo ...
3 best anti-spam email filters for Thunderbird to keep your inbox clean  Windows ReportLooking for best spam filter for Thunderbird in 2019? Checkout our review of best Thunderbird spam filters to keep your inbox clean and safe.
How to enable spam call filtering on your Android phone  TechRepublicGoogle recently added spam protection to the Phone app on Android devices. Here's how to enable it.
How to stop robocalls and other spam calls from reaching your iPhone  Business InsiderThere are several ways to stop your iPhone from receiving robocalls and other unwanted spam calls, but no single remedy is a perfect solution.
Google Assistant will screen spam calls on the Pixel 3  Circuit BreakerThe Pixel 3 will be able to screen spam calls and provide real-time transcriptions, Google announced during its Pixel 3 event today. The new feature will allow ...
T-Mobile says it has blocked 1 billion robocalls  The VergeT-Mobile announced today that since launching its Scam ID and Scam Block features 18 months ago, the carrier has blocked over 1 billion scam calls. T-Mobile ...
How to Block Spam Calls – A Complete Guide  BeebomSpam Calls have turned from mildly annoying to a disaster in the last couple of years. I don't know about you guys, but I might have received more spam calls ...
How to stop robocalls on iPhone and Android  CNETThe US has a robocall problem. These are the calls made to your phone that deliver a prerecorded message that often wants you to do something. Sometimes ...
The iPhone app that stops those horrible spam calls just got a great new feature  BGREarlier this month, we told you about an app that sadly has become a must-have for pretty much anyone with a cell phone. The issue of spam calls is a problem ...
Help Desk: How do you stop robocalls to your landline?  The Washington PostOur tech columnist answers your questions about how to block spam, nuisance and fraudulent calls on your home phone.
Top iPhone, Android apps for blocking robocalls  Fox NewsMajor carriers and app developers are ramping up their tactics for tackling robocalls on the iPhone and Android devices.
How to stop robocalls and other spam calls from reaching your Android phone  Business InsiderThere are a few ways to stop your Android phone from receiving robocalls and other unwanted spam calls, but no single method is a perfect remedy.
Verizon now offers free robocall and spam blocking service  Sun SentinelVerizon's new free Call Filter will weed out annoying robocalls and spam as the carrier-introduces STIR/SHAKEN technology.
4 Smartphone Apps That Aggressively Block Spam Calls  The Wall Street JournalInundated with junk calls? Stop pesky robo-dialers with these anti-spam apps.
How to Block Calls on an Android Phone  TechliciousTired of the endless spam calls and area code spoofing scams? Here are four ways to block those annoying calls on your Android phone.
Savvy Senior: How seniors can stop frustrating robocalls  Allentown Morning CallQ: Is there anything seniors can do to stop perpetual robocalls? It seems like I get five to 10 a day on my home and cell phone, and I'm sick of it! -- Frustrated ...
How to Block Calls on an iPhone  TechliciousTired of the endless spam calls and area code spoofing scams? Here are four ways to block those annoying calls on your iPhone.
Top 5 ways to block spam calls  TechRepublicScam likely, blocked number, a message in Chinese... sound familiar? Spam calls are on the rise, but there are ways to deal with it and keep the annoying ...
T-Mobile switches on spam call protections for some cellphone users  Washington PostMany of T-Mobile's wireless customers will soon see a new “Caller Verified” message when they receive calls on their cellphones, the company said Thursday.
Robocalls: What AT&T, Comcast and Verizon are doing about them  CNNRobocalls are an annoyance at best and a dangerous scam at worst. AT&T, Comcast, Verizon and other telecom giants want to tamp down on the scourge of ...
7 ways to stop robocalls now  Fox NewsHello! Please don't hang up… did you know that you could save a bundle on…? This is a robocall, another automated telemarketer. Nowadays, robocalls make ...
#TechBytes: How to get rid of spam messages on Android  NewsBytesFor years, junk messages have been marring our experience. These messages come from spammers, who either try to get clicks on malicious links or promote ...
Spam calls: how to stop the robots from calling your iPhone or Android  The VergeIt seems like robocalls are only getting worse, but there are several ways of reducing the scam calls and these annoying, constant interruptions.
Hiya Says There Were 85B Robocalls Worldwide in 2018  The Mac ObserverHiya has released [PDF] its first Global Robocall Radar Report, and the results are troubling. Global spam calls grew 325% to 85 billion calls in 2018 (via ...
Check out the apps that will intercept robocalls and tell you when they're done  ABC NewsPesky calls from telemarketers may be easier to combat than ever. Interested in Technology? Add Technology as an interest to stay up to date on the latest ...
How to stop Robocalls  KomandoWant to stop unwanted telemarketing calls? Your carrier has tools, plus you can download apps. Read this complete guide to stopping unwanted and annoying ...
How to stop robocall spammers and exact revenge  Boston.com“Call me, maybe?” is on the brink of becoming “Call me, never.” Robocalls, those computer-generated shysters, are making some people stop answering the ...
10 Best Call Blocker Apps to Prevent Nuisance Calls to Your Small Business  Small Business TrendsBombarded by unwanted calls on your mobile phone? There's an app for that! Here's our list of the 10 best call blocker app options.
Behold: This is the iPhone app you’ve been waiting for to stop those horrible spam calls  BGRSpam calls have been a problem in the United States for quite some time now, but things have really gotten awful over the past couple of years. The issue varies ...
The Beginning of the End of Robocalls  New York MagazineBy the end of 2019, spam phone calls could be on the ropes.
A new government app will allow you to stop telemarketing and spam calls  Brag MagazineA new government app allows people to register their numbers and block spam and telemarketing calls before they reach you.
How to better protect yourself from robocalls on your iPhone  MacworldThe solution requires a lot more technology on the backend, but you can make inroads.
Top 10 Best Android Apps — Call Blocking — July 2018  Android HeadlinesSpammy and malicious calls are a serious annoyance, and even a danger for some Android owners. Iffy calls can cost you your time, your sanity, and in some ...
As Scams Skyrocket, How To Stop Robocalls On Android And iPhone  ForbesNever assume you're too smart to fall for a phone scam.
Google Chrome to block spam ads starting July 9  Gadgets NowGoogle Chrome to block spammy ads in all the countries around the world.
7 paid apps you can download for free on April 17th  BGRUntil Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint get their act together, there's not much we can do about spam calls and texts. But if you want to try to solve the problem ...
Don't pick up: how to stop these annoying robocalls for good  USA TODAYRobocalls are constant and they're costing phone owners money. Here's how to identify and stop them.
Here's How the Government Shutdown Is Affecting Spam Robocalls  GizmodoThe two main agencies that are supposed to be helping monitor robocalls—the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Federal Communications Commission ...
As FCC Steps In, Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, May Get Boost To Stop Robocalls  ForbesThe Federal Communication Commission wants the telecom industry to step up attacks on robocallers, providing another tool for consumers.
Review: How to stop robocall spammers -- and exact revenge  Chicago Daily HeraldWhile lawmakers debate what to do about the roboscourge, engineers have cooked up some clever ways to make bots work for us, not against us. The right app ...
'It's an arms race': Inside the war on robocalls  Yahoo FinanceWhat will finally stop unwanted spam calls? It's a hard-fought battle but a change called STIR/SHAKER is coming. Here's what's going on and when.
Relief From Spoofed Robocalls Is on the Way  ConsumerReports.orgThe telecom industry says that new technology to manage spoofed robocalls may start rolling out in the coming year. Consumer Reports tells you what you need ...
Spam calls: How Google is fighting robocalls on Android.  SlateThe problem of robocalling is getting worse. In April, robocall-blocking *service* YouMail estimated 3.4 billion such calls were made—900 million more that month ...
[Update: Contacts] Long-awaited robust call blocking features may soon come to Google Phone app  Android PoliceYour smartphone already lets you block annoying callers so that you never have to deal with them again, but what if it could be proactive? Android could soon ...
News Protecting your privacy: How to block robocalls Matthew Smith 7:31 AM, Jan 28, 2019  WXYZDETROIT (WXYZ) — If you're tired of spam phone calls, robocalls and telemarketers, there's bad news for 2019: experts expect even more robocalls in 2019.
New Apple patent suggests iPhones could warn against spam calls one day  The VergeA new Apple patent could finally give iPhone owners some relief from spam calls by automatically recognizing a fake call and warning users accordingly.
Gmail now blocks an extra 100 million spam messages every day  SoftonicGoogle is winning the battle against spam 100 million emails at a time.
John Oliver Tackles Robocalls by Flooding FCC With Spam Calls  PCMagThe host of HBO's Last Week Tonight has come up with a new way to encourage FCC commissioners to take a harder stance on robocalls: by robocalling them.
Stop the Robocalls: Tips to Hang up on Them for Good  WQAD MolineRobocalls happen day or night, ringing our cellphones, our landlines and are often nothing but a big waste of our time. Billions of robocalls happen each year If ...
The Android phone app has pre-call blocking at last  SlashGearThe official Google Phone app has an update in the pipeline that'll bring far better call blocking features than Android's ever had before. This is the first.
Phone companies are promising major leaps forward in spam call blocking technology  Cleveland 19 NewsBoth AT&T and Verizon set to roll out anti-robocall efforts, with AT&T announcing a partnership with Comcast to develop a call authentication *service* and ...
8 Best Android Call Blocker App List For 2018 | Filter Spam Calls  FossbytesMany third-party apps can shield your device from unwanted calls and also help you to recognize the unknown numbers. We have made the best Android call ...
All Verizon Subscribers Will Get Free Spam And Robocall Protection  UbergizmoVerizon, the country's largest mobile carrier, has announced that it's going to provide all of its subscribers with free span and robocall protection for free.
Verizon Stops RoboCalls: Just The Facts  Digital Media SolutionsVerizon recently added additional cybersecurity measures to address robocalling and spam calls.
Verizon says they plan to block 'robocalls'  Fox 35 OrlandoIf you've been getting more "robocalls," or unsolicited calls on your cellphone, you're not alone.
Government shutdown could mean more robocalls on your cellphone  WPTV.comThe government shut down is trickling further down to the point where it could affect your cellphone.
Blocking spam calls with mobile apps - Nation  The Star OnlinePETALING JAYA: From telemarketers offering credit cards and insurance to criminal Macau scam syndicates, Malaysian mobile phone users are being hounded ...
A how-to guide to stop robocall spammers and exact revenge  The Mercury NewsBy Geoffrey A. Fowler | The Washington Post. “Call me, maybe?” is on the brink of becoming “Call me, never.” Robocalls, those computer-generated shysters, ...
iOS 12 includes support for reporting unwanted texts & calls as spam  9to5MaciOS 12 includes a notable update for handling spam messages and calls. As outlined on its developer webpage, app makers can now create an app extension ...
The Wily Spammers Infiltrating Google Hangouts and Calendar  SlateLeonarda, Dmitriy, Satish, Joana, and Alyce managed to force their way into my Google Hangouts, and I couldn't block them.
Police: Smartphone apps a good way to block spam calls and scams - Nation  The Star OnlinePETALING JAYA: Install mobile applications that block spam calls and messages, police have advised smartphone users.
Kim Komando: Effective tips on how to stop those annoying robocalls  South Bend Tribune“Hello! Please don't hang up… did you know that you could save a bundle on…? This is a robocall, another automated telemarketer. Nowadays, robocalls make ...
Buckeye Broadband introduces robocall blocker for customers  Toledo BladeBuckeye Broadband has announced a new “robocall blocker” system available to its phone customers that it says will “eliminate telemarketers, political ...
Quickly block spam calls with Castle, the anti-robocall app  KnowTechieSpam callers are getting smarter. No longer is it just 1-800 numbers and random strings of numbers, it is your area code and prefix. Castle could help.
How to block spam messages on iPhone and Android devices  Gadgets NowLose 10Kgs in 4 weeks,” reads one message and “Hi, we have an exciting offer exclusively, to avail the offer give us missed call on 0099887655,” reads another.
Spam has taken over our phones. Will we ever want to answer them again?  The Washington PostAll of those calls from strange numbers are turning our favorite devices against us.
How to Block SMS Spam on iOS 11  NDTVTired of spam text messages? iOS 11 allows you to block them easily, but you need to install third-party apps for this feature.
How to stop robocalls: Those annoying automated phone calls are about to get worse  CBS NewsOf the robocalls made in August, 1.8 billion of them were scams and next year, some estimates predict half of all mobile calls will be scams.
Verizon helping customers fend off robocalls with new app, FCC pushing stronger caller ID  ABC6OnYourSide.comThey are annoying and never ending, but relief is coming to those of us who deal with incessant robocalls. The Federal Communications Commission estimates ...
The FCC is taking on Robocalls  KomandoRobocalls might be on the way out now that they are on the FCC's Radar.
License to kill: robocalls. The pressure's on for phone carriers to target spammers  The Boston GlobeFederal authorities are gearing up to require new defenses against unwanted calls.
T-Mobile Goes After Scam Calls With 'Caller Verified' Feature  PCMagThis feature is currently limited to Galaxy Note 9 handsets, but T-Mobile said it will be available on 'more smartphones later this year.' Users will see 'Caller ...
Nearly half of all phone calls will be spam by 2019, according to new report  Android PoliceSpam calls have become obnoxious as of late for many people - myself included - and it looks like they are only going to get worse. First Orion... by Corbin ...
Verizon charges new “spam” fee for texts sent from teachers to students  Ars TechnicaA free texting *service* used by teachers, students, and parents may stop working on the Verizon Wireless network because of a dispute over texting fees that ...

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