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It is really difficult to define spam. But generally speaking, spam is unsolicited information, which is forced upon the reader and is purported to advertise some service or product. The unsolicited information is not provided just once or twice; the reader is, in fact, so much bombarded with the same kind of information that he gets exasperated.
Here are some of the important features of spam.
Spamming through emails
The spammers consider email as the best medium for sending spam. They try to remain anonymous and send mails in massive quantities. The sender addresses are generally spoofed or harvested to conceal the identity of the real senders.
You may also receive political messages, appeals for charities, chain letters and spam to spread malware.
All unsolicited mails are not spam. For example, you have given your email id with a permission to receive messages, newsletters and business proposals. If the sender also sends legitimate business proposals, charity appeals, invitation to seminars, e-books through his emails, they are not considered spam. The reason is that the sender has already sought your permission to send you mails.
Sometimes the unsolicited messages of genuine nature may come from senders who have not sought your permission. Let us say you have only one supplier of certain product that you are trading. You wish you could know some other supplier for a competitive buying. Suppose you get a message from an Asian producer of the same product who quotes lower rates, then you would not consider this unsolicited message as a spam.
The key word for spam is ‘bombardment’ with unsolicited messages. Spam has spread its tentacles in other forms of internet marketing especially article marketing.
Most article writers tend to cater to the search engines rather than the searchers of information through search engines. Search engines accord prominent display to popular websites on their first pages. Their criterion for popularity of a website is the number of links that connect to that website.
So the article marketers fill up their articles with large number of links to their websites to hoodwink the search engine robots called crawlers. Not only that, they submit the same articles to hundreds of article directories through automatic submission software. The strategy is to create a deluge of links to fool the search engines.
Since their only objective is to create links, the articles mostly contain duplicate or copied content. Though prominent article directories such as Ezine Articles discourage such articles, there are numerous other article directories that turn a blind eye to such submissions. This type of spamming is called link spamming through articles.
How to treat the spam?
Though you cannot stop the link spamming through articles, as it is for the article directories and search engine robots to devise methods to discourage their submissions, there are several ways you can stop spam in your emails to some extent.
Do not post your email ids on the public forums, newsgroups, chat rooms or websites.
Do not open messages that appear spam
Email service providers usually offer effective tools and filters to stop the spam mail. Yahoo, probably the most popular email service, provides options to do so. You can select all the messages that appear spam and click on the Spam button. They will stop appearing in your inbox. Yahoo also offers spam filters. You should add the spam mail’s id in the prescribed filter box and you will stop receiving mails from that sender.