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There is a question concerning PureVPN VPN/PureVPN = make some apps connect directly to internet (whitelist?)

The answer seems to come directly from the manufacturer, pointing to its websiste and hotline.

Should this be classified als spam or is it just a post with lower quality?

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Spam has the characteristic that the poster does not disclose their connection to the product. This was a question about PureVPN and a representative of the company posted an answer and disclosed the relationship. So it isn't spam.

It is a low quality answer, overly promotional to the point of being more of an unpaid advertisement than an answer, plus the link to a tutorial doesn't lead to a tutorial but to the company's marketing web site. It does, however, answer the question asked.

  • The answer was deleted so it clearly was spam, and unless they disclosed their connection in the answer, then it wasn't disclosed properly. – Ramhound Dec 30 '14 at 8:24
  • The user name was "PureVPN", the company name. Perhaps it was deleted because of general low quality and the fact that the "tutorial" link pointed to a marketing web page. – fixer1234 Dec 30 '14 at 8:35
  • The answer could, have been deleted cause it was a link only answer and low quality. I'm not the mod who did it and the account still exists so... Its plausible but not confirmed. – Journeyman Geek Dec 30 '14 at 13:32
  • Yeah: a link to a marketing website is considered to be spam – Ramhound Dec 31 '14 at 4:18
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    I would distinguish between a spammer scouring the site for questions vaguely related to their product and then posting an "answer" hawking their product as a solution (without disclosure), vs. an OP asking a question about a specific product and the publisher of that product responding and actually answering the question (with disclosure). The issue in this case might be more the promotional nature of the post, turning it into an unpaid ad, which would be a different basis for deletion. If it had been just a factual answer from the expert with appropriate links, I wouldn't see a problem. – fixer1234 Dec 31 '14 at 5:37
  • An ad is an ad in my eyes. It's not fair; but unless a person who writes a softeare that might solve lots of problems, helps and answers lots of questions proves to be a valuable member I can't agree with a promotional post from them – Ramhound Dec 31 '14 at 23:55
  • @JourneymanGeek (or other moderator) - We need an official opinion. There is general agreement that this question could have been considered deletion-worthy for a number of different reasons. The question still remains: does it meet the definition of spam? If someone were to flag it, should it be flagged as spam or one of the non-spam flags? – fixer1234 Jan 1 '15 at 3:26
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There's a few issues to look at here

  • firstly, whether the question was posted there to be spambait. In this case it seems to be a regular user with questions that don't relate to the product in question.

  • Secondly, whether there's proper disclosure. I suppose its clearish here, and there's precedent for companies posting support answers as long as affiliation is clear.

  • Thirdly - there's a precident for someone whose sole purpose here being to shill his product. The questions didn't specifically ask for support for the product in question, and essentially he was posting product recs. In short, the posts should not read like an answer.

  • Fourthly whether its a quality answer.

It isn't. Its a link only answer. Its low quality. Its no different from copy pasting the same answer to everything. If he had posted a specific, self contained answer, I'd not have seen an issue there.

While SU shouldn't be the main support venue, I don't think an answer being link only and/or posted by a vendor should mean its spam on its own. However, deletion for being low quality makes sense.

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