[Update: After about 2 weeks, StumbleUpon lifted their ban on me and several of my staff. My guess is that our single office IP address flagged something in their spam algorithm, and after human review they let us back in. If you get banned, and you haven’t been spamming, send them a note explaining what you think happened. It seemed to help in this case.]
informative somewhat opaque e-mail they sent me:
I’ll admit: I have, on occasion, done slightly naughty things on StumbleUpon. Of my 1300 or so stumbles and a few dozen pieces of discovered content, I’ve probably promoted my own blog a few times.
On the other hand:
- All of my stumbles and discoveries are genuine. I only ‘like’ stuff if I really like it.
- I love your service. It’s fun.
- If my pattern of usage warrants a ban, who exactly can use StumbleUpon?
The Real Story: Why StumbleUpon Probably Banned Me
At the same time that StumbleUpon banned me, they also banned a number of other folks in my office. My office, like most, uses a form of local area network where everyone in the office has the same ‘public’ IP address.
I suspect that StumbleUpon can’t figure out that there are 10-20 people here at Portent who like their service and use it. Instead, they see a dozen of us happily clicking away on different stuff and think we’re some kind of black-hat stumbling server farm.
I contacted them, of course. I doubt I’ll ever hear back. But I’d sure like an explanation, and my account turned back on.
It’s frustrating (infuriating) to put so much energy into behaving yourself, only to get dinged anyway.
Maybe I’ll just go black hat. Proxy server, anyone?