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Occasional Advisor
Occasional Advisor

How do you deal with backlinking?

Hey fellow Community Managers. I've noticed an increase in backlinking in our Community and I'm trying to decide the best way to deal with it programmatically. In general, if we find that someone is backlinking, we remove the content and ban that account. I know the links are "nofollow", so they don't generate an SEO benefit, but I'd like to stop the activity altogether if I can. I'd like to hear what others have done. I'm considering turning off simple HTML for new users, but that seems a little extreme. Anyway, I'd love to hear what steps others have taken. Thanks! 

 

Jesse
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Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Re: How do you deal with backlinking?

Good question.  A lot of those get caught by our spam filter and put in quarantine.  One way I deal with them, imperfect as it is, is to do a User Reports search every morning for users that have registered since I last ran the report (I try to do it every day).  I then run all the gmail.com, outlook.com, and yahoo.com email addresses through stopforumspam.com/search (didn't link it directly here so this doesn't get caught as spam!) and block any that are listed and removing their posts.  I catch an average of two or three a week doing that.  It works for us as most of our community members are enterprise customers so those email domains are relatively rare.   I'm anxious to hear how other people deal with them.

--
Community manager in the Micro Focus Community. My computer always used to beat me at chess, but it is no match for me now I changed the competition to kick boxing.
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Honored Contributor Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Re: How do you deal with backlinking?


@jxwilson wrote: I'm considering turning off simple HTML for new users, but that seems a little extreme.

This is an interesting idea. I wonder if it will cause any issues with embedding images or using any other of the rich text editor features. 🤔

We haven't done much prevention around stopping this particular type of spam. We do try to monitor new accounts though. We also have content filters setup which is really helpful to prevent spam from ever making it live.

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Lili McDonald
Community Operations Manager
@ DataRobot
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Occasional Advisor
Occasional Advisor

Re: How do you deal with backlinking?

@kgronemanLooking up addresses is an iteresting approach. Do you use an export to get the addresses in a list? I'd love to hear what your process is. 

 

@lilim As it turns out, turning off simple HTML doesn't disable the link feature in the rich text editor, unfortunately. Thanks for your reply! 

 

Jesse
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Honored Contributor
Honored Contributor

Re: How do you deal with backlinking?

@jxwilson , usually if I have run it the previous day, it only has two, maybe three pages of new registrations.  I can quickly look down through it, copy the email addresses that could be questionable, and past them into the stop forum spam site.....then block them and delete their content if they are listed.   It takes 5 minutes if nobody is listed.   After a holiday or vacation, I sometimes do get a csv export file, pull out the email domain and sort by it so I can quickly run through the gmail, yahoo, hotmail, outlook addresses.  

--
Community manager in the Micro Focus Community. My computer always used to beat me at chess, but it is no match for me now I changed the competition to kick boxing.
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