More jolly japes from the junk folder

Welcome to our occasional look at the positively flatulent and laughable junk mail that we receive in our inboxes most days.

More jolly japes from the junk folder

Although such ordure matter gets (or should get) sent straight to the junk folder and usually does, sometimes it is so outrageously, well, outrageous, that it’s worth pulling out to demonstrate just what a vast septic tank the internet actually is.

Here are a few examples of hilarious junk that I found in my trash folder recently…

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Spam, spam, thank you ma’am

Is it just me, or is it somewhat hypocritical for people to display their contact information openly online and then throw their handbags on the floor when someone ‘spams’ them?

Spam, spam, thank you ma'am
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Spam: are we becoming too precious about it?

medium_155554663It fascinates me to see how so many people regard their inboxes as if they are as private as vaginas. The intrusion of spam into their email nether regions incurs not only wrath, but also spiteful, spewing hatred almost as vicious as if someone were physically trying to stuff it down their throats. [Read more…]

The funniest spam recipes you’ll ever read

It’s well worth taking a look at your junk file from time to time – often the garbage in there is so awful it’s hilariously funny.

Take, for example, this spam email trying to sell me hair care products. After a few sentences about the product, here is what ensued, I assume spun by some robotic software to act as a filler and take my spam filter’s attention away from the sales spiel. I’m surprised my spam filter didn’t die laughing…

Continue in the center, and a dish. Cook the greatest importance.

LEEK SOUP Put a coffee-spoonful of onion, a pound of cornflour in a wooden spoon, will fry slowly in, sprinkling it into a thick sauce, or cold mutton. Let it will take a thin piece of a little mustard, a dish quickly with some small cabbages boiled eggs to simmer. Add at the bones, mixing very good beef, which you can be nearly two hours. If you need be, unless that you have begun at once. I give special point of the following way: Take the leaves. Let this sorrel, reduce that should call a brisk fire till it a dish some cold cooked green has taken place. Fill some butter or six eggs and round a hole in butter to soak in cold they are brown bread and wash some good white sauce is used.

FRIDAY’S FEAST Cook some lettuce plenty of minutes. Take a scrap of dried flour, then pass it through the meat, cook gently so as big lump of rounds of bacon, which is like it, two glasses of hard till you wish to boil. It should be added a calf’s liver, lard them gently salted, let them in cold milk; melt them cook again serve very well. Drop in dice, and onions, such as much attention to the cabbage and bay-leaves, a white sugar and make a boiled a powdering of lettuce, and mix these with pepper and it to a nice sweet is over. Put the eggs and stew them in a cup, adding to cover it about a little seasoning with milk and fry in tarragon vinegar and press it five inches from the tureen and also with the lid. When the vegetables do not minced. Add sufficient water and salt. Stir cheese-balls in the table and pour over the bechamel.

CAULIFLOWER SOUP (BELGIAN RECIPE) Take a bean and roll in as usual, and then, above and serve the inside yellow aspic, and arrange them through a small saucepan with the top with slices of chocolate that is done at my best; and breadcrumb some cold meat, bread, and fold over. Tomato Sauce: Brown an egg and the size of an egg. Add three or other liqueur. This sort of butter cook can bind the peas to suggest antennae. A good soup-spoonfuls of boiling milk. Bind the sieve and ham, pour over perfection. Put it for ten minutes, then your eggs are placed at the heat through. Serve when boiled, shell the frying-pan, also added it to use some white sugar over the oven, with a slice and remove the leaves. Scoop out the prunes are cheap in cold meat, and decorate with pepper and skin them, make a little soda in four, the boiling fat, or twelve ounces butter, and one-half inch thick, cut in butter; add a half pint of recipes for a moderate fire, and throw in boiling water. (etc.)

HORS D’OEUVRES The sugar 1 or lard. When the pan into pieces if they are tender, remove the sauce to have some potatoes, and then cover them in one half moon, so much liked by the oven, or in thin piece of a slice of the sauce shredded parsley, a chopped hard- boiled in. The water or boiled and pour the oven, or cook in a gentle oven and the soup a pound flour, put in hot fat. When ready, strain and let it rest for ten minutes. When set a white sauce over them decorated with some minced veal in the artichokes and add a little white pepper and half a bit of eggs, and can be inexpensive dish) Cook them, sprinkle chopped onions (already fried) and place a powdering of the dinner of butter in a pint of all the size of the cream, adding long sponge biscuits, but using the yolks of white sauce and of duck or you will be a sharp taste and plenty of two onions, add milk, pepper and add the whites of the butter melt one-half inch long; put in the fruit in salted water; a good as you add the salt. Butter a few raisins, some chopped parsley scattered at the cabbage, adding salt and dish and salt and butter over, and cut it the tongue or haricots to it in pieces if any cooked as you eat all with fresh fruit, raspberries, strawberries, portions of vanilla, and lid. When all bones and a little water. (etc.)

Who, but who, writes this sh*t?

Now: bite back and brush up your writing!

“How To Write About Yourself”…how to make the most of yourself, whatever you need to write

“Business Writing Made Easy”…everything you need to know about writing for business in English

“The English Language Joke book”…hundreds of laughs about this crazy language of ours

 

photo credit: Nomadic Lass via photopin cc
photo credit: cvander via photopin cc

Pinterest spam: newsflash! (Well, newsflush.)

After I posted here about spammers on Pinterest recently, a number of interesting comments ensued and one comment, in particular, spurred me on to further action, as I found it worrying:

I’ve reported about 1000 spam pins so far, and they just keep coming. The real problem (imho) is that Pinterest doesn’t have a firm policy in place to deal with spam. They block links when they’ve confirmed it is a spam link, but that is it. No blocking accounts that are obviously spam, no stopping those accounts from continuing to spread the mess, nothing. Pinterest is a great idea, but if their attitude is to ignore the issue, and to restrict people like myself that have been trying to report it, then I’m not going to be around much longer (from reader Wendy Janzen.)

Enough already: I contacted Pinterest direct

I emailed press@Pinterest.com as follows:

Hi guys
Here in the UK we’re all going mad about Pinterest – we love it! – but we’ve been worried lately about spam creeping into it.
I posted about this on my site recently and it has developed into quite a lively discussion.
Could you be very kind and post a comment on it, to let us all know how you’re handling the spam issue?
Here’s the link – https://howtowritebetter.net/hello-pinterspammers-no-were-not-that-stupid/
Thanks in anticipation
With all good wishes
Suze St Maur

Quick reply – shame its content wasn’t quite so sharp

Here’s what I assume is their marketing agency replied within less than 24 hours (win) but with typical PR waffle (fail) ….

Hi Suze –
Thanks for getting in touch and apologies for the delayed response! We appreciate your concern and want to make sure you know we take spam in the community very seriously. Below is a comment/statement for your reference.
As a growing service, Pinterest is not immune to challenges faced by sites across the web including spam. However, it is a tremendous priority for us to quickly address them. Our engineers are actively working to manage issues as they arise and are revisiting the nature of public feeds on the site to make it harder for fake or harmful content to get into them.
Also, want to make sure you saw that Pinterest also addressed how users can help protect themselves from spam in a blog post last week: http://blog.pinterest.com/post/21069528666/addressing-spam-on-pinterest
Please let me know if you have any other questions – hope this helps!
Thanks,
Erica
The Outcast Agency

Thanks Erica (and it’s no fault of yours!), but much as we feel for Pinterest’s troubled immune system where spammers are concerned, don’t your clients think maybe someone should have seen that one coming, and plumbed in a more robust filtering system in the first place?

Yours Pinterpuzzled

Suze and the HTWBers xx

UPDATE APRIL 25th: Watch out – the spammers are getting clever on Pinterest, mixing up genuine pins with spam ones. And I even found one yesterday that went through to a virus warning. Come on, Pinterpals – get your act together before spammers and hackers take the whole damned site over!

Newflash to help you with your writing!!!

“Super Speeches”…how to write and deliver them well

“How To Write About Yourself”…how to make the most of yourself, whatever you need to write

“Banana Skin Words and how not to slip on them”…over 1,500 spelling and grammar tips to perfect your written English

Hello, Pinterspammers … no, we’re not that stupid

Maybe I’ve missed something, but it’s only in the last couple of weeks that I’ve noticed the spam surge on Pinterest. Have you?

If not, here’s what to look out for…

Someone with a fairly exotic name will follow you, or like one of your pins. They probably won’t have repinned one of your pins, though.

You decide to follow them back, and click on one of their pretty pins, like this one, say:

 

 

 

 

 

 

But when you click through to the final image, you get something like this (and I have seen ads for types of bread, L’Oreal cosmetics and numerous others – I suspect this one is a spammy job, too):

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happily the Pinterpolice appear to be on the case. When I clicked on this cute little doggy’s pic on a suspect board…

 

 

 

 

 

 

…I got through to this:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you haven’t run across these types before, here are the characteristics of the spammers’ boards so you don’t waste time on them:

**As I said, a slightly – but not overly – exotic name, female, accompanied by a picture of a pretty young woman.

**Many of the spammers have a description line that says “follow me if you like Jennifer Lopez/Madonna,” or something like “I’m just amazing.”

**They will have a few followers, but be following hundreds or even into thousands.

**The vast majority of the ones I’ve seen have loads of boards – 351 seems a popular number.

**There will only be one pin for each board (occasionally there’s a second one.)

**The titles of the boards will bear little or no relation to the nature of the pictures pinned, e.g. one called “food I love” will show a picture of a garden or pair of shoes

**If you come across one of these Pinterspammers, you’ll find a “report pin” button to the right of the large image, which you access by clicking on the smaller pic on the person’s board. If enough of us report the spammers they might get the hint and stop cluttering up our inboxes …

A friend of mine got one today that metamorphosed into an ad for knock-off Gucci bags. Various reports are coming in of other spam delights What has been your experience of Pinterspam so far?

Write right for Pinterest and beyond:

“How To Write About Yourself”…how to make the most of yourself, whatever you need to write

“Business Writing Made Easy”…everything you need to know about writing for business in English

“Banana Skin Words and how not to slip on them”…over 1,500 spelling and grammar tips to perfect your written English

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