One of the least expensive forms of pay-per-click advertising on the internet is StumbleUpon. With prices as low as 5 cents per click, they are able to drive more traffic for the buck than sites like Google or Facebook. What’s more, ads have a chance of picking up “natural” stumbles that are free. In some cases, a good campaign with strong content can get more natural clicks than paid ones.
The statement could be pushed over to just about any true Web 2.0 site where voting and popularity determine the success of a piece of content. Facebook, Twitter, and MySpace – overrun by spam. Mixx, Propeller, Yahoobuzz – spam havens.
For social news powerhouses Digg, Reddit, and StumbleUpon to be so changed by the presence of gobs and gobs of spam hits a little harder. They are the sites where I started my journey in Web 2.0. They are the shiny beacons of user-controlled, traffic-generating goodness that made mainstream media look to the people for their opinions and discoveries.
They are, for all intents and purposes, shells of what they should be, and spam is to blame. Perhaps more importantly, how they handled spam over the years has caused them to close their networks in one way or another through a series of witchhuntesque spam countermeasures.
I have had a lot of good comments about the article “How to not get Banned on Stumblupon“, and I appreciate all of them. One issue that has received a lot of attention is the “ghost banning”.
I want to clear something up for those of you who are now afraid to thumb up your friends stuff, or who think they can no longer thumb or review their favorite sites. I am going to explain how the process works from my knowledge in hopes of putting your mind at ease.
First of all, when you go to check one of your recent discoveries and find that it says “discovered by someone” rather than yourself, it doesn’t necessarily mean you are ghost banned. You may be experiencing:
- A glitch. They happen all the time on most sites and SU is no exception.
- You are sandboxed, which I will explain below.
I got a lot of my information for the term “sandboxed” from a post Jeff Quipp made a couple of years ago. Where ever you are buddy, thank you! I wasn’t sure how to explain it until I found his post. Continue reading Are You Really “Ghost Banned” on StumbleUpon?
For me, StumbleUpon is a great place to make connections, see great pictures, and find articles or sites that I would otherwise not be exposed to. The whole idea of SU is to share great finds with your friends and for great content to get exposure.
This concept has evolved, to say the least. Now you may be exposed to sites that are not relevant to your preferences just because it has been thumbed up many times by your friends, and their friends, and so on. These sites have been “pushed” through the system, for the sake of traffic/views. Recently SU has been trying to combat this situation by adding the share feature, and even offering advertisement etc. In addition, they are banning “circles” of mutuals that seem to be sharing, thumbing, and reviewing the same sites.
If you happen to be in one of these “circles,” you run the risk of getting “ghost” banned or completely banned.
Ghost Banned on StumbleUpon: You can thumb up, thumb down, discover… pretty much anything a regular user can do. The only thing is, your efforts don’t count. You can tell if you’re “ghost banned” by discovering a page, opening up a different browser, and visiting the review page of the site you just discovered. If it says “Discovered by someone” and not you, you’re a ghost. No word yet on how to reverse this.
Here are some things to avoid: