Stupid Trains & Stupid CashforComments

For some reason I see that I am on this list from (yes a nofollow link for you buddy). And I want to state here that I didn’t apply to be on this waste of space and I don’t endorse this stupid effort to get links to my site (or to any other site). Yes this is a post in anger. Now I don’t know who added me, as they never asked me, so for the mean time, this anger will be vented towards the person who started the train off…

Cash for comments green snot

My his site is really hard on my eyes, what color would you call that ? Snot Green ? 😀

Who is CashForComments ?

CashForComments (yes 1 link was more than enough) is run by a guy called Prija Phaphouampheng (my that is a mouthful), who likes to call him self “sneaky bastard” online (snivelling more like). He does seem to come up strange ideas, like offering $1 to his daily top posters, or an idea about making a movie about bloggers. The movie idea might not be so bad, but he wants to have some prize where he will give a car away, plus one to his kid sister. Now what does your sister have to do with the movie ? Will the winner win access to her too ? He’s also asking people to sponsor the car with $100 donations. emmm, how about no ! He even reminds me of Alfalfa from the Little Rascals. Do you see the similarities ?

Alfalfa the blogger

Link Trains

Link trains operate (as far as I know) by you adding yourself to a list, and reposting the list. Cool and simple, eh ? Link trains are basically a way for people who are at the top of the list, to get many links back to themselves. But really it is a form of spam and doesn’t really bring anything to the content of the page. Being someone on a list of 50 other bloggers, which is reposted on 50 different locations will fire off alarm bells at Moutainview and won’t help your SERPS much. For an example of what train SPAM looks like, you can go here.

24 thoughts on “Stupid Trains & Stupid CashforComments

  1. It’s a good negative review of whateva cashforcomments is doing. And I agree to the point that top few links get lot of benefit in link trains. But it’s difficult to believe that link trains totally suck up.

    If you are talking about Google @ Mountain view, only small bloggers and publishers are scared of these alarms n all. Did you see John Chow is no where in google search and still he rules [literally]. There are many benefits of other material parameters like technorati etc while calculating the value of the blog apart from the biggest parameter of content which everyone anyways strive to maintain at his/her blog. And I think the link trains help to get you there at top levels at certain moment of time. Specially, when blogs like mine have “DoFollow” for all the links.

    Ofcourse, when you think about content, link train posts don’t really make sense and I completely inline with you on this but then there is always take and give in life.

    So look at the positive side of everything, probably life will be more colourful.

  2. ha now this is a funny thread.

    link trains are stupid, as google is smart enough not to count them. Check your back links and show me some links from link trains that show up.


    sorry to hear you all wasted your time !


  3. Thanks for you r comment Life is Colourful, Yes I did mean Google, when I mentioned Mountainview. My point was more that Google are likely to see that this is some type of link building activity and discredit it, or possibly worse, peanalise links out of your webpage (both existing and future ones).

    I did try to be positive, in fact Prija mentioned that in his about me page. But I don’t think that this effort or efforts similar will bring any good.

    I did try to see the positive side. And I guess you can say you can game the stats for Alexa/Technorati, but this does end up having a detrimental effect on the blogging industry.

    I wish you look with your blog, and thanks for the visit !

  4. Becky, certainly the long term picture in blogging industry what you are mentioning is blur even I can see that as a mature blogger and I surely understand your concern.

    What good thing I found in his post is – his efforts to make his blog popular by any means possible whether its link train or car contest. It depends on the person’s ambition how fast he wants to reach to his goals.

    Anyways, thanks for the link back and opportunity to get in touch with a good blogger. Keep in touch!

  5. I apologize if they tagged you. Yes, my name is a long one. My nickname as the sneaky bastard comes from the fact that I experiement with different marketing tactics to gain traffic. Some can be seen as grey hat SEO however I try to push the limits by utilizing Game Theory behind these tactics.

    BloggingTheMovie dot com is my other site I’m starting up. Giving away a free car is a marketing campaign where it can gain media hype to capture more buzz and essentially land sponsors for the movie. I’m selling sponsorship ad spots for $100 and my sponsors will receive 2 reviews, a permanent link, a domain name ad on 2 cars, and be part of blogging history. At first I was going to keep the money for profit, however my sister is about to start college and I thought it would be a nice gift.

    Since I didn’t have a car until after college, I know how it feels. Her car will have the domains displayed on her car throughout college and it will gain more visibility. The color on my site is Traffic Light Green. Alfalfa was actually my favorite character. Thanks.

    The link train that you are involve in is the Jet Train where it also includes a free prize, the 4-Hour Workweek book. I’m giving 2 books away one for the winner and another book for them to sign. This signature book (aka the records) will pass through the hands of 10 bloggers. Each winner will have the opportunity to sign the book. This book will be part of the Movie – “Blogging the Movie” dot com. I was to show the power of the masses where one item has the ability to travel the world of bloggers – a 10 degrees of seperation if you will.

    Link trains are spam unless they are part of marketing campaign where the winner of the contest will be mentioned in the movie. You are entitled to your opinion and I will respect that. Enjoy your day.

    aka Sneaky Bastard

  6. I’ve seen quite a few link trains since I’ve started blogging and some of them request you add your favorite blogs to help other people find which blogs are good. So someone probably added yours because it’s one of their favorites. Awful isn’t it?

  7. Hi Becky. I apologize for your tag. It really was out of admiration for what you have displayed on your site and as a fellow blogger.

    I too feel and felt the same way as you regarding these link trains and have been very hesitant in participating. I’ve found that with particular ones, especially ones amongst close bloggers it can be a great way of showing appreciation and also joining in or supporting good marketing ideas, such as the Jet Train – Blogging The Movie idea from Cash For Comments. When I heard about it, it seemed like a unique idea that I hadn’t come across prior…maybe that’s coming from an ‘online marketers’ opinion.

    Honestly, this is the first complaint I’ve heard…but truly am sorry in regards with the difference in opinion and effect with Google. I agree with ‘Life is Colorful’ on John Chow’s site and new bloggers ambitions to reaching the top. I guess I’ve also been focusing on the positive side of things…

    Although, it doesn’t happen 100% of the time, I’ve found many friendships and bloggers through link trains and cherish those new interactions.

    Best Regards,

    Susan Suarez

  8. Oh yeah I forgot. The thing you said about my sister was pretty messed up. So I have put a hex on you, enjoy the rest of 2007. =). Karma will find you.

  9. good negative review i respect that. i participated in this link train though I wouldn’t call it stupid i think it’s just like any other contest link train.

  10. Susan, Thanks for supporting my thought process… in a way, somewhere I found the critics are turning to negative reviews though there is thin line between the two. And for the comments we do on fellow bloggers, it’s important that we respect them by all means with our comments [I am directing here towards Prija’s concern in his comment above].

    On a different note, the comment on “what SPAM looks like” I took it on positive side that it might not look good for my blog to participate in every other train but I might just stick to one and go on adding links in there.

  11. Wow… a hex. Now *that* is messed up. I get negative comments (not really on my blogs, but on a web community I run), and the old cliche of ignoring them really is best. I’ve never tried hexing someone who doesn’t agree with me. LOL

    I respect this review, and I agree with parts, and not necessarily with others, but it’s better to state your opinion than just to rehash the same old same old that’s out there by the bucketful.

    I do agree about link trains. I went to technorati, and noticed a blog that had ‘authority’ over 1000+, so I went to her blog. It was okay.. a personal blog, but nothing stand-out at all.. I couldn’t figure out why so many people were linking to her, esp since she had a pagerank of 0. So I looked… it was all from link trains. It might have gotten her traffic, I’m not sure, but it definitely sent off spam alerts in my head.

    The truth is… spamming works. Otherwise people wouldn’t do it, and your inbox wouldn’t be full of people promising to enhance your sex life. But that doesn’t make it something I want to participate in.

  12. Thanks everyone for adding their comments here, I welcome the discussion.

    Jayne you are right, spamming works to increase your numbers, but I think in the long run your creditability will be tarnished.

    Prija : Sorry about the comment about your sister. I think the fact that you ask people for money to sponsor this, and you are trying to do it with free promotion on other peoples sites, in return they get a chance to win a $15 book or to be featured on your $70k movie, this in the end takes away from your creditability (2nd time I’ve used this word).

    Time to install the threaded comments plugin I think !

    The main reason for my post was to clarify that I didn’t want to be on the “Jet Train” and I don’t support this link train idea.

  13. BeckyS Comment:
    Thanks for taking the time to comment, my point was more that I don’t advocate this ‘event’ and I didn’t request inclusion.
    I don’t think that Link Trains will bring anything good. Sorry for being negative, but alas that’s my opinion.


    “if a door salesman gives me a great sales pitch, I usually reward him by buying whatever he’s selling”
    Personally I don’t think this would move me to purchasing something. For me it’s the product not the pitch.

    @ becky. well you attacked that me and not the product.. so you just pretty much ate your own words.. 1. you commented on my looks. 2. you commented on my character 3. you commented on my sister. You say its the product yet you attack the salesman?? when if fact. I’ve been the most nicest person in the blogging world. where i gave 30 free reviews.. and my legions of fans can account for this.

  14. “it’s the product not the pitch” : neither your product nor how you promote your link train impresses me. So both actually fail here.

    I think you’ll find I attacked both. 1 I attacked you because it’s your name on the product, and 2 I attacked the product as it’s a stupid idea.

    True I shouldn’t have mentioned your looks or your sister. I apologize for this. That was my attempt at a little humor, but it obviously didn’t come off.

    You shouldn’t have used my name in promoting this venture. Because my site is on the links, it looks like I advocate what you are doing.

    “I’ve been the most nicest person in the blogging world. where i gave 30 free reviews.. and my legions of fans can account for this.” : big deal, what is it to me what you have done in the past with other people. You are doing this as part of self promotion for your site and your movie. Giving away free reviews won’t get you a Nobel Peace Prize buddy, sorry.


  15. Becky, when you say You shouldn’t have used my name in promoting this venture. Because my site is on the links, it looks like I advocate what you are doing – I think you did not notice the third point in the post

    3. Add at least three new favorite blogs of yours to keep the contest jet train going. Make sure you contact the bloggers and insist they participate so they can keep this going.

    Here people won’t assume that you are supporting this train, but you are there because you are favorite blog of someone.

  16. In this case I wasn’t contacted by anyone with regards to this. Nobody insisted that I partake. So in this respect I think your point is moot. (no offence meant btw.)


  17. Becky, nevermind but read it correctly. Contacting the blogger is not to put their links or not [you can not control it anyways anywhere on the web who links to you] but to insist them to participate.

  18. keep it coming keep in coming, I’m enjoying reading this ^_^

    *clicks “Notify me of followup comments” via e-mail*

  19. I am an established blogger myself and I see that Prija and I are neck and neck in terms of ranking but its not rank that counts. As Becky mentions some things can tarnish your reputation. Its very important to stay away from being too critical of someone just because you don’t agree with them. Also, being new in the blogosphere and writing a post like this may not be the best way to go about things. A better idea would have been to email him politely and explain your point of view rather than making it a public affair, unless ofcourse you like that sort of thing. Either way, my personal opinion, but it would be best to TRY and end this on a positive note!
    – Enkay

    P/s – Please do not include me in this on-going “bashing” , this is strictly my opinion and you can take something away from it, if you’d like or you can totally ignore it.

  20. Thanks for your comment Enkay. With the public nature of blogs, I thought a post about this would serve me best. Plus I had someone ask me about this so (that’s how I found out) and I want to give an explanation to my readers.

  21. Well it is true that blogs can reach a very large audience in one go depending on readership and such. Look at Justine, the girl who received the iPhone bill, her video received so much popularity that AT&T is removing itemized details from current phone bills.

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