A user [link removed] just posted an answer to a question I had bountied. The answer itself is garbled, and it's unclear whether it's a legitimate answer attempt or an attempt at farming reputation off an unanswered soon-to-expire bounty; the answer sounds like it could have been thrown together by someone without technical knowledge after doing a Google search with key phrases from my question. I then followed the Twitter link in the user's profile, which leads to a Twitter timeline that seems to be filled with various marketing tweets. This leads me to suspect that the user might not be legitimate, but rather some marketing scheme to funnel people through to their Twitter page. What does everyone else think?

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    $\begingroup$ I’ve removed your links while I write an answer (which is “probably not”) to prevent unwarranted pile-on. Readers who would like to play the sleuth can use the edit history. $\endgroup$
    – rob Mod
    Commented Jan 2, 2021 at 13:31

1 Answer 1


We prefer to reserve “spammer” for users who use their Stack Exchange accounts to post marketing links here. It’s not really any of our business if a user has a Twitter account which is used for selling things. For that matter, the network-wide consensus is that it’s just fine if a user has marketing links in their Stack Exchange profile (ahem). It doesn’t become a problem unless a substantial fraction of the user’s participation in the community is more about funneling traffic to their own product than about asking and answering high-quality questions.

In your case, the user in question has written lots of links to Wikipedia pages, a Google search, and (in another answer) an arxiv preprint written by someone with a different name. Not a spammer pattern.

In general, if you see a problematic post, it’s more effective to start bringing attention to it using the flagging system rather than a public call-out. The flagging system is quite effective at removing clear spam answers (generally in a few minutes); it creates an audit trail which the diamond moderators can use to identify more subtle cases; and it preserves the privacy of users who are actually not doing anything untoward.


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