Competitors Using Software To Mark Each Other's Craigslist Postings As Spam

from the now-that's-impressive dept

One sign of a successful software company is when an ecosystem starts to build around it. We've seen this with companies like Microsoft, eBay and Google of course. And, while there definitely have been some products built on top of Craigslist, I hadn't realized it had gone so far as to include software that will try to trick Craigslist into deleting a post as spam. As you may know, Craigslist has a little link on each post that allows any reader to "flag as spam." There's an automated system that takes note of these clicks, and if enough such clicks come from enough unique users, the post is automatically pulled off the site. For the most part, this system is both effective and efficient. But, according to the linked article above, there's software out there that will let you "flag as spam" any post you want, sending multiple clicks pretending to come from unique users. It's being used by some companies to maliciously pull down perfectly legitimate posts from competitors. Craigslist says it's constantly tweaking its systems to avoid this kind of thing, but why not have a Wikipedia-style setup, where "deleted" spam posts can be reviewed by folks who can "undelete" the not-spam ones? It can use the same basic system, where if enough people vote that a "spam" post is legit, it goes back online. Or if it's really an issue, then certain posts that get jerked back and forth could finally be "locked" by an admin based on their discretion.

Filed Under: ecosystem, spam
Companies: craigslist

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  1. icon
    Kai (profile), 16 Dec 2013 @ 10:40am

    UNETHICAL? Give me F*****ing break!!!

    I am so sick of reading stupid thread comments that say flagging craigslists ads is unethical. UNETHICAL? Two clicks to the left and you're in Casual at YOUR place for some NSA kind of fun. How can people bring up ethics when it comes to doing ANYTHING on craigslist? You can have your diamond ring stolen from you and listed in your same zipcode on CL in less than a day. Someone fencing your stolen goods and CL is there to help them do it. There was...or is...or was human trafficking (now on backpage) until CL got rid of the Adult Services section. Point is (yes I have one believe it or not) that Craiglist is a fkng ZOO! A ZOO I tell ya but we wanna pick and choose which categories we want to be ethical about. You all who say "Ethics" and "Craigslist" in the same sentence should be banned from using the internet. The same people saying flagging ads is unethical are the SAME MORONS looking for "No Strings Attached" sex just two clicks down.

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