Ten Unethical Blog Visitor Behaviors

Sometime back I had written a post about Unethical Blogging Practices and it dealt with bloggers’ unacceptable behaviors. Today’s topic is a little more controversial in nature and might sound negative as Unethical Blog Visitorwell but I request my honorable readers not to get offended because I am not talking about serious and genuine readers here!

The following are my list of blog visitor (or user) behaviors that I find really frustrating:

#1 Comment or Email Spamming

Nobody particularly likes spamming – whether it is email spamming or comment spaming. I am not talking about those spam comments that gets caught by Akismet but there are also more genuine readers who spams as well – Probably very short comments when delivered in batches of three or four fall into this category?

Recently I added a Contact form on this blog. To this date, only one or two – out of the 20 plus feedback mails I received – were genuine feedbaks. Rest belonged to online marketing and even links and promotions of rated sites.

Of late, there’s been another kind of comment spamming for those who have video commenting facility on their blogs. Thank god, I do not have one here for it is unthinkable having to moderate rated videos as well.

#2 Marking a blog as Not Safe or Rated

Many a times ‘blogger’ (blogspot) blogs suffer from this misbehavior from the unusual visitor. Unfortunately, once or twice they mark a blog as unsafe, it is going to take some time before the blog can be verified by Google and makes it public again (or at least the rated warning is taken out). This can be a really bad experience for those blog owners who put in all the hard work to keep their blogs up to date with good content. Fortunately, self-hosted blogs do not face this issue but they suffer from the next!

#3 Hacking

Well, this is not the handwork of a typical reader but of those spiteful online terrorists! Hacking is probably the worst thing that can happen to any blog or website as it can result in permanent damage to data or fame.

Continuous pinging by bots and even wicked visitors is another thing that can slow down the blogs drastically. However, this type of attack is not that common these days

#4 Click Bombing

Click bombing is a real threat to many bloggers these days as a lot of them have lost their publisher accounts with ad network such as Google AdSense. Click Bombing refers to the continuous clicks of the ads on a blog via bots or by humans themselves. In some cases the ad network may get your publisher account enabled back but not without a lot of communication back and forth.

#5 Reporting to Google about paid links

This is mostly done by experienced blogger readers themselves though not very common. A lot of bloggers have lost their page and search ranks due to this kind of information passed on to Google. I personally believe that it is not a good thing to do and if the Google folks want to find it out themselves let them.

#6 Imposter Commenting

Commenting in the name of somebody else is more vicious than spamming and click bombing. Impersonation can harm the relationship that the blogger and his/her regular readers are having. Since blogs – unlike forums – have no authorization mechanism, anybody can harm anybody else.

#7 Republishing the content elsewhere

This is mostly done by other bloggers and online content creators themselves and I have touched upon this topic in the ‘Unethical Blogging’ post as well. I thought it needs a mention here as well since it is not a great feeling when you have to read your own content elsewhere.

#8 Public bashing or defaming

Well online bashing, probably, cannot be as bad as the live shoe-throwing incident involving George Bush Jr. but it is a serious issue. This can happen in the impersonated format or otherwise and on your blog or elsewhere. If it happens on you blog it is always better to deal with such negative commenting in a very open manner as genuine readers will understand the motives behind bashing. If it is elsewhere you might want to get the help of the particular blogger to take on such public bashers.

#9 Commenting for the sake of commenting

Well, this happens quite often when you build a community around your blog. Manytimes, people (including me) comment on blogs to get traffic, backlinks (on no nofollow blogs), or to just make your courtesy visit visible to others. The last point mostly is also towards cementing one’s position in the ‘Top commenters’ list.

Sometimes, it can really piss you off as a blogger when you have to moderate many such comments. Of late, I have taken the stand of not approving some of those very short comments but not marking them as spam as it’s again not among my comment moderation ethics. So any of you happens to be at the receiving end, please understand. Another commonly found behavior (by such commenters) is that they do not read through the post properly before commenting as they are busy stuffing their keywords into the link text than adding value to the comment box.

#10 Reader Passivity

Though I had some great ideas to get the passive reader into some action some of you are still suffering from major inertia, I guess :lol: To be frank, it’s not anything unethical from readers point of view to behave so, but sometimes bloggers expect some kind of response – no matter whether it is a pat or slap – from their readers. So what’s preventing you from commenting now?

If you have any more points to add here, please shoot…

Comments

  1. I’ll admit that I haven’t thought as much about plugins harming me and my site as I probably should, but then again, I evaluate plugins by what I feel they can help me do. I probably need to be just a bit more discriminating at times.

  2. @Mitch, your take is the right one. One should be buy into plugins more driven by their features. Moreover, most of the time the open source community will pounce on anybody who is coding non-performing or insecure plugins and that’s the beauty of WP community :)

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