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and those are the links that stand the test of time —Matt Cutts, Google
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Social Link Spam and Cigarette Butts
October 2006

by Eric Ward

Remember the tale “Village Wine”, where nobody thought their little bit of wine would be missed from the village festival?  Then nothing but water poured forth from the cask on festival day. Social link spam is a similar thing in reverse. My few social self-diggs etc. wont affect things, so why not?

My position on this topic may be misunderstood. I have no problem with making it easier to encourage socializing. After all, this chiklet here -> Add LinkMoses to MyYahoo! is a form of it. 

But what I see is a lack of discretion as to what should and shouldn’t be socialized to any given social venue. If someone socializes a press release about a new dry cleaners web site in Duluth, it’s sort of silly, and nobody gets hurt (or dugg :), but to me it’s the pollution of the commons, noticed or not. The logic behind it is also funny, if a bit ironic.  "Since this will never become popular I can go ahead and submit it to social network sites that seek to identify what's popular..."  Huh?

I’ve been guilty in the past of silly socializing, and I do understand that one man’s spam is another man’s headline news (Hey, I’ve been looking for a dry cleaners in Duluth!!!)

My position today is social spam is not going to kill the social golden goose, but the goose does bring out the worst of the spammers, and for me that’s like people who toss “only one” cigarette butt out their car window and think it doesn’t make a difference. 

It does.

Link well my friend,
 

About the Author
Eric Ward founded the Web's first services for announcing, linking, and building buzz for Web sites, called NetPOST, in 1994, and in 1995 he launched the URLwire Site Announcement Network, which today has millions of readers and remains the only service devoted 100% to announcing useful web content. Eric is best known as the person behind the first linking campaigns for Amazon.com, Rodney.com, and PBS.org. His services won the 1995 Award For Internet Marketing Excellence, and he was selected as one of the Web's 100 most influential people by Websight Magazine in 1997. Eric writes several online marketing columns including LinkWeek for SearchEngineLand.com, and previously wrote for ClickZ.com and Ad Age magazine.

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