Recently, I've noticed a trend towards spam postings that are free of any external link but advertise a product without disclosure. These techniques evade normal spam detection mechanisms and techniques by eliminating the link and relying on the reader to search for the program in question, but are nonetheless spam.

How do we effectively identify and respond to these posts?

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  • All of the examples have been deleted. For the benefit of <10K readers, can you post an example or two of what these look like? – fixer1234 Jan 1 '15 at 18:38
  • You need to be nearly clairvoyant (or at least her sister Sally Voyant), to distinguish these. If the same recommendation is not popping up all over the place, these could be just a low quality answer by a new user (and the K7 post doesn't even look low quality). If it looked like it might be an actual solution to the question, I'd be tempted to move one like the Remo Recovery post to a comment. I might even polish the English on the K7 post. Do we need a rule that no new user can post a software recommendation unless it is a complete, unbiased review and tutorial? – fixer1234 Jan 1 '15 at 20:01
  • Remo Recovery was identified as spam based on a Google search. google.com/… – bwDraco Jan 1 '15 at 20:03
  • If he had been smarter or less lazy, he would have changed his user name (which I would have expected). – fixer1234 Jan 1 '15 at 20:08

Those are almost invariably spam.

Flag as spam without any mercy.

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  • Ack. I mean, our normal "spam detection" mechanisms are based on keywords anyway, not necessarily links. – slhck Jan 1 '15 at 16:34
  • There's a broader question here. How do we find these posts in the first place? – bwDraco Jan 1 '15 at 16:34
  • Looks like you did. Some things do still need the human touch, until the spam detection stuff picks it up. – Journeyman Geek Jan 1 '15 at 16:36
  • @DragonLord For a normal user, that's hard, if almost impossible. As mods we could track certain characteristics or search for related users, but for normal users, I'd recommend searching for answers with some keywords, sorted chronologically: superuser.com/search?tab=newest&q=is%3aanswer%20recover — that'd give you possible spam posts for data recovery tools. Some similar keywords are "corrupt" or "repair". – slhck Jan 1 '15 at 16:36
  • @slhck: That's among the reasons I want the diamond :p – perhaps we can break out some of these tools for 10k use? – bwDraco Jan 1 '15 at 16:37
  • I'd note I still do it the old fashioned way. Good ol front page, and my nose. – Journeyman Geek Jan 1 '15 at 16:38
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    Oh and since this are typically new users - the new user/late answer reviews may be of use. – Journeyman Geek Jan 1 '15 at 16:41
  • They usually come up there or in the 10k tools "new answers to old questions" page. – bwDraco Jan 1 '15 at 16:44
  • I flagged one as spam that looked a lot more like spam than these examples and you suggested not using the spam flag. "Flag as spam without any mercy." needs some qualifiers. For example, some definition of the evidence, unless your answer applies only to @DragonLord, who has magical spam detection powers. – fixer1234 Jan 1 '15 at 20:17
  • @fixer1234: A good chunk of these specific ones are known, persistant spammers. I'd also add that if you arn't sure, no one's going to tell you off for a LQ flag. There's a big difference between an innocent link only answer/lazy answer and something that's a cynical attempt to name/linkdrop IMO – Journeyman Geek Jan 2 '15 at 0:12

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