Update: Changed title from "Just spam, no baked beans or singing Vikings."

Seems like we've been invaded by more spammers than usual in the last couple of days. I've seen members leaving them welcome messages. Here's how not to be duped:

1. Spammers often don't capitalize their name(s). However, check the rest of the profile, sometimes non-spammers also don't capitalize their name(s).

2. Quite often, spammers will list themselves as being from alternate universe places like "Hawaii, Afghanistan". That can be a dead giveaway. Still, check the rest of the profile, as the person behind it might be a legitimate, joking member of the site, or the location may be legitimate (like "Intercourse, PA, USA).

3. Spammers may not post a photo of a real person, or any image at all. Sometimes they steal images of real people off the WWW. This supposedly helps the spammer avoid notice by the ever prowling anti-spammers. Since we are on Atheist Nexus, and not everyone posts a representation, once again, check the rest of the profile.

4. A key giveaway is at least one link, and generally more leading to usually dodgy commercial website(s). Once again, check the entire profile. Sometimes legitimate members will post a link to their non-commercial homepage, or their commercial homepage where they may be selling anything from instructional CDs to their services as a graphic artist. Legitimate members can usually be told apart from spammers because they'll have at least something written about themselves in their profile.

Example of some link names I found in a spam profile today:

buy revitol
revitol cellulite cream
revitol stretch mark cream
revitol hair removal cream

5. You can report spammers to Richard by mousing over the "About Us" link at the upper right hand side of your page, in the Atheist Nexus toolbar. Scroll down to "Report an Issue". Click on the appropriate issue ("spam"), and make sure the wee circle has a green dot in it. Then, copy-and-paste the URL of the spammer profile and hit "Send Report".

Does anyone have anything to add that might help identify spammers?

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No, it's just something to do when your bored that can actually get the bastards back. Consider: If everyone would make it a habit to respond to say 1 in 20 of these scams with sincere sounding and clueless queries, they would be overloaded and have no way of knowing which sucker is a live one and which isn't. It would stop it pretty quick.
I agree up to a point. I wasn't quite bored, but out of curiosity once I did play one of these suckers along far enough that they called me on the phone long distance.

I still think some of these scammers would continue, as the occasional hit still might be more lucrative than to generate income other ways.
Looking through the members list, I've noticed a disproportionately high number of accounts in India supposedly. Since India is religious as all hell and there's no town called "chd." anywhere, accounts "in India" are likely to be spams as well.
If this is true, they have not posted anything for us to think they are spammers. If they would have done so, they would be gone.

I know for a fact we have several here that are actually from India, Iran, Iraq and elsewhere where atheism is not welcome (and sometimes dangerous). Some of them do not use their actual names and locations.
There are Indian atheists and agnostics. A good friend was raised Muslim, but is agnostic. Some other Indians that I know were raised Hindu, but consider themselves atheists now. Aheism has a long tradition in India. Wikipedia is a good place to start. The Atheist Centre is another.
I was in Intercourse, Pa this week - Blueball, Pa too
I forget... is Blueball near Intercourse?



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