Commercial advertising is not allowed on Thorn Tree
Replies: 45 - Last Post: Aug 15, 2013 6:04 AM Last Post By: marogisa
Oct 18, 2012 1:17 PM
Commercial advertising is not allowed on Thorn TreeThorn Tree is a forum for individual travelers to meet other travelers, not a place for tour operators, guides, hotels or other businesses to promote themselves. Commercial advertising and business accounts are not allowed on the Thorn Tree. This includes users identifying themselves as a business in a message, signature, avatar, profile, and any external links redirecting to their business or site. It also includes users doing stealth business via private messages.
If you come across any posters advertising or spamming their business on Thorn Tree or by private message, please report it. For posts, you can click on the flag icon at the top of the post. For PMs, click on "report" at the bottom of the message. For profiles, click on "report this member" at the bottom left of the profile page. Please include a brief note explaining why you think the post, profile or private message needs looking at and our moderation team will review it.
See our Community Guidelines for more information.
Oct 18, 2012 3:21 PM
1This message is putting the cart before the horse
The spam messages on the board have been going on at least a month now - none of us can do anything about them, despite reporting them it still takes several takes hours to take them down
Then there's the inbox messages offering millions and under various other guises
I for one, am getting more than a little annoyed, imparting knowledge & having to wade through a minefield of rubbish daily
Mods - please get onto this, block certain ISP's & make this a user-friendly forum as it was prior to BBC taking over
Oct 19, 2012 4:48 AM
Oct 19, 2012 8:31 AM
3Does this mean that personal accounts such as mine, which include the website of the safari lodge I work at need to have signatures changed? Seriously?
I would have thought stopping the PMs that are constantly going around regular posters would have been a slightly higher priority....
A number of us on the board (when time permits!) are in the industry and have valuable information to pass on - WITHOUT touting for business. Is a URL in a signature that much of a problem for people who are posting according to forum rules?
Oct 19, 2012 1:44 PM
4yaddayadda LODGE yaddayadda.COM
I cant figure out how this would be allowed by any of the rules you just read.
Why dont you simply drop it, or ask yourself what is your true motive for having that signature. Look, I have a job too, but I would never break the forum rules to mention my employer -eventually tarnishing their image or getting them kicked out of the guidebooks for being a spammer.
Sending a clear message of "zero tolerance" toward business links is an excellent idea. On some days, spammers outnumber the regular users and we think "why should we bother to give independent advice if it gets drowned in a sea of spam".
Oct 19, 2012 3:09 PM
5Ì too am getting sick and tied the spam and veiled commercialism. Rastus if your signature block includes your employer, but you do not make specific references to them, then maybe its permissible (but not my call). The crap that is most annoying to me is the increasing practice of spamming 100's or even 1000's of websites that are just garbage. I too would welcome a more rigorous policy of blocking ISPs from serial offenders.
Oct 21, 2012 5:52 AM
Oct 22, 2012 2:03 AM
@rastus0706 - Our guidelines are clear on this: we do not allow commercial profiles on Thorn Tree, and this includes profiles advertising their businesses in their messages, profile names, avatars, descriptions or signatures. We ask you that you please remove your signature if you want to stay in the Thorn Tree community. For more information, please read this thread:
Business Accounts in Thorn Tree
With regards to the other issue (spambots and mass PM'ing) I can assure you the mods work extremely hard at removing this kind of content, sometimes clocking up hours of their time when they do nothing else but deleting PMs, messages and spam profiles, so trust me when I say that if the mods weren't on it like a hawk you would be seeing a lot more spam littering the forum. This is unfortunate and I understand it can be very frustrating when you are a regular poster, but we are a fairly small team and the volume of posting in Thorn Tree is very high (we easily surpass the 100,000 messages a month barrier). The best way to help the situation is to report every single one of these messages when you come across them, as they will be flagged with our moderators straight away.
Oct 22, 2012 4:33 AM
Oct 24, 2012 1:31 AM
9Trouble with your suggestion at #8, Kira, is that it begs the question of what criteria the moderators are going to use to appoint the vigilantes.
It’s also a potential problem that people who are frequent contributors often develop a certain emotional involvement which could tempt them to delete posts they seriously disagree with. The moderators have a greater objectivity.
Also – the level of your activity makes it clear that you would qualify as a “regular”, but, as you say, hitting the spam button for ten posts a day is more than you’d be prepared to do. Policing a section of the forum to decide which posts should be deleted will – or should! – take much more time and effort. So who’s going to do it?
I and one or two other posters that I’m aware of have rigorously reported spammers on the Madagascar section for a while now, and while there have been occasions where the moderators have not reacted as quickly as I would have liked, and others where they’ve allowed a post which, to anyone who knows the country, is obvious spam, we’ve now reached a stage where the regular spammers seem to have given up and the section is more or less clean.
Blocking IP addresses of serial spammers can have a temporary effect, but it’s not rocket science to operate from a new IP address. Blocking ISPs as suggested at #1? Deciding to declare an entire provider off limits raises all kinds of difficult issues.
Oct 24, 2012 2:51 AM
Oct 24, 2012 9:24 AM
Oct 24, 2012 12:46 PM
Oct 25, 2012 8:37 AM
One problem with IPs is that most posters, do not have fixed IPs. Each time someone logs on to the internet, they are assigned a different IP. The IP used today by a tout may be assigned tomorrow to a perfectly respectable and innocent poster. If we banned by IP, we might be cutting off legitimate users, while the touts and spammers can still post from a different IP.
I can see why it would be annoying to have to report 10 posts made by the same abuser. One way to work with that is to report only one post and comment that the abuser has posted multiple times. That alerts us to find and look at all the posts.
Oct 25, 2012 8:56 AM
14Erm, because we freely ask & give out knowledge to posters which cannot be found in guide books (particularly Cote d'Ivoire which has appalling written knowledge)
You're paid to monitor this
Sorry but YES it is annoying, I come on here in between work I'm doing, I don't expect to have to trawl through rubbish to help others ...
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