Talk To Me, Don’t Spam Me


Aaah Spam. Spam with cans That horrible, thick, greasy, lump stuff that apparently serves as an edible substance.

Ick.

Fortunately, that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about internet spam. In emails, on blogs, on Facebook and on Twitter. I’m talking about this sort of spam because recently I have been seeing an awful lot of it on Twitter especially and its driving me crazy.

I looked at my feed the other day and the whole thing was rammed with ‘buy my book’ tweets. Now I understand how social media can, is and should be used as a promotional tool, but there is such a thing as going too far. When every tweet you post is trying to coax people to buy your work, well, I just switch off. Similarly, if I decide to follow somebody on Twitter and, no matter what time of the day or night, I get a direct message (DM) saying ‘thanks for following me, check out my book’ then I’m likely to unfollow you just as fast.

I wish people would understand just how annoying automated messages and spam really is.

I’ve picked up a new blog to follow recently, by Kristen Lamb. You may have seen a selection of her posts earmarked here and that list will continue to grow because her words are extremely helpful. So too are her initiatives. My favourite is the ‘love revolution‘ #MyWANA, known more formally as We Are Not Alone. I won’t go into huge detail here, but I do recommend that you check out her blog and her posts about WANA because the whole idea of paying it forward, community, mutual understanding, help and care is a huge part of what she is trying to achieve. Personally, I love it and have been using the #MyWANA hashtag on Twitter to have conversations with people.

I mention Kristen and her blog in the context of this post because she talks about how the #MyWANA tag has recently been rammed with spam. And how that defeats the purpose of what the tag was created for and, worse yet, stops people using it. She has reclaimed the tag and since doing so, conversations there have taken place which put writers in contact with each other to form relationships. Far more effective that hurling repeated spam messages, wouldn’t you say?

From a personal point of view, the #MyWANA tag has put me in contact with people I might never have spoken to (similar to the #amwriting and #amediting tags). It allows me to have conversations no matter what time of the day or night and makes me feel part of a community of people who genuinely care and want to help. That is so, very, very valuable. Therefore I’m saddened to see people take advantage of it and fill it with spam.

I’m not going to wax lyrical about how one should promote their music/book/artwork but I will use this post to give you my personal stand on the matter. Hammering my Twitter feed with ‘check out my *fill in the blank*’ messages won’t encourage me to do so. It will make me think you are an automatic robot who doesn’t care about anything other than making sales. It will make your tweets fall into the background to be ignored because they are also the same thing. What it will also do, in extreme cases, is make me click ‘unfollow.’

Do yourself a favour… if you want me to buy into something you’re selling, tell me about it. Properly. Be available to answer my questions and interact with me. Show me you are a real person out there who is in a similar boat to me. Do that and I connect with you and not only will I talk back, but I’ll tell others about you too. The Posts I Like page is there for a reason… its because that’s stuff I want to share from people I have connected with over my blogging life. No one wants to talk to a machine.

What do you think, guys? Are these thoughts too harsh? Too critical? How do you feel about the constant barrage of selling spam on social media these days?

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About Ileandra Young

I'm a thirty-*mumbles* year old (purple loving, cheese worshipping) author of fantasy, juggling a pair of beautiful twin boys with my burning desire to make up stories and write them all down. When I get the chance, I play games, listen to music, and in days long past I even ran a radio show. Though I occasionally write non-fiction, my heart lives in fantasy and my debut novel, Silk Over Razor Blades is now available through Amazon along with part two of the trilogy, Walking The Razor's Edge.
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12 Responses to Talk To Me, Don’t Spam Me

  1. Sally Edmans says:

    Darn tootin’. I can’t stand spam, and will avoid spammers at all cost. If someone sends me an automated email telling me how much they can improve my website, for example, I’m going to wonder how they can capture the personal service I offer to all my clients when they can’t even be bothered to mention my name or the name of my company in their contact email. Surely spammers must find that they’re losing business as people turn off them in substantial numbers?

    Like

  2. bwtaylor75 says:

    You would think a person looking to sell something would have found the proper way to do it. Alienating potential customers with spam clearly isn’t the way to go. All we need to do is read this post to see how the spam approach works. I guess that’s the difference between those who get it and those who don’t. I’m betting the spammers aren’t very successful.

    I’m with you, promoting a manuscript by spamming everyone under the sun is irritating. And that’s being nice. You hit the nail on the head with this post. Nice.

    Like

    • Thanks hon.
      I just wish Twitter folks would take the hint. They really just don’t get it.
      In fact I need to do a purge fairly soon to get rid of the people who do nothing but spam. That should thin my lists considerably. 🙂

      Like

  3. I agree! Buy my book!

    Sorry, I just couldn’t control myself.

    Like

  4. jmmcdowell says:

    No, you are not being too harsh or critical. I follow Kristen’s blog, too, and I like the way she’s reclaimed her hash tag. Did I say that right? You don’t have to worry about me tweeting you requests to buy anything. I still don’t tweet! 🙂 Of course, right now I have nothing to sell either. 😉

    But when I do, I will not spam anyone, especially not my blogging buddies!

    Like

    • Lol, yeah, her recovery of the hashtag was great and what’s even more warming is the way that those who use it support her. Makes me smile.

      And she has a point to; the beauty of running your blog and having the followers you do means that when you are ready with something to sell, you won’t have to spam anybody!

      Like

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