$1,000-a-Day Off of Spamming Pinterest Is Too Good to Be True

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Update: The incredible $1,000-a-day windfall one man named "Steve" claimed to make by spamming Pinterest users turned out to be just that -- not very credible. Our spammer, in a follow-up interview with The Daily Dot, said that he was not in fact the guy behind the swarm of fake Pinterest accounts linked to one Amazon affiliate named final-fantas07, which the blog Total Pinterest uncovered. "I thought it would be funny to play this prank seeing how popular Pinterest is and see how fast it could go viral," he said. And viral it did go, being picked up  by us at The Atlantic (twice) and a few other outlets. Mea culpa. For what it's worth though, The Daily Dot got another supposed spammer on the record as saying that $1,000 per days isn't unrealistic, since that's about how much he earns off of a few unspecified spam schemes.

Original: Another sign that Pinterest has "made it" as a social network? As on Facebook and Twitter before it, spamming Pinterest has become mighty profitable, so much so that one guy currently brings in over $1,000 on a daily basis.

Or at least that's what a 24-year-old who goes by "Steve" told The Daily Dot. "First week of doing this I made around $2,000 which was Feb. 20-29. I stepped my game up and changed the way I was doing some things, and I saw a dramatic increase in my earnings. Went up to $500-800 a day.  Kept at it and for the past two weeks I have made over $1,000 a day with the highest earnings being around $1,900."

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Though he didn't offer a look into his black box himself in the interview, essentially he makes the money with a swarm of pinning bots that regularly like and repin its own posts and receiving commissions from Amazon's affiliate program. "By getting attention on the items, the orchestrator of the whole thing counts on some people clicking through the links and going on to buy them, thereby generating him or her some affiliate commissions," explains Total Pinterest. "Steve" expects to earn $2,000- or $2,500-a-day this way, which, yes, would comfortably put him in the 1 percent. Only if he's able to keep up those earnings, that is. Something tells us that like its predecessors, Pinterest's mettle as a social network will be tested by how well it can crackdown on spammers.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.