spamminess -- nothing can reduce the quality of a site or service so quickly. from unwanted intrusions by bots to disconcerting porn (as opposed to the good kind)... it’s distracting at best and at worst will cause users never to return. yet, the very presence of such intrusions means you’ve arrived.
if the spammers don’t care about your site, there’s a problem. it means you don’t have the users, engagement, size, or scale to warrant their time. if that’s the case, get back to making your product better until it’s spam ROI positive.
when first founding workables, probably the most frequent question from investors centered around this area. unfortunately we never got big enough to worry about, as howard lindzon of stocktwits would say, keeping the stream clean (free of misinformation and penny stocks in their case).
recently i’ve noticed a few of my favorite services entered the promised land of spam -- foursquare and soundcloud. as opposed to linkedin or twitter, i tend to keep my foursquare friends to -- well -- actual friends. we go places together, we hang out, and so it’s cool to keep up with each other. increasingly purely random people are hitting me up on foursquare, and it’s definitely not because i’m that cool. not sure if they’re peddling localized spam or something else, but they see an roi.
as you can see from some of my thong-wearing avatar followers on soundcloud, they too are experiencing the high class problem of spam. to soundcloud’s credit, while i received these notifications on my mobile app, i don’t see these followers when logging on to the website, so kudos to them for keeping their site clean -- for once you hit this promised land, you need to move quickly to rid your site of this.
empower the community. improve your analytics. get smart about what is *real* user behavior, for it’s only the promised land for a second. your site has arrived, but it won’t last if it’s riddled with bots and users with way too sexy of avatars.
most importantly, if the spammers think they can make money off your platform, it means you can too -- whether that’s selling out to porn, or a revenue model more noble.