How I ruthlessly referrer-spam everyone I know

I’ve used Privoxy for several years now and love it. For those of you not familiar with the program it’s basically just a local proxy that you can run your browsers through that will strip ads and make sure your privacy is intact while surfing the net.

One neat thing about it is that it’s very configurable, and you can also specify extra header info to send. So, this gave me an idea .. why not just send one of my sites as referer. That way, I’m always promoting my site when I’m mindlessly surfing the web.

Here’s how my config looks

privoxy config

So, if I were to visit an env checker right now I’d get HTTP_REFERER:

How is this promotion you might ask? Well, webmasters are curious animals, they check their logs, and when they see a referer they want to know why that site is showing up in their logs. And that’s another visitor for me :-)

I wasn’t really sure anyone would notice until I played Squash with a friend of mine that runs a script site which I had visited the day before. In the middle of the game he says “Hey, I saw I got a hit from your site yesterday” and was wondering if I had linked him.

I think this is pretty harmless, and yes, the title was probably overdoing it a bit ;)


Comment by Dave Davis on 2006-11-27 22:33:50 +0000

I thin referrer “Spam” in this context is, as you said, harmless. There is software out there that will “Ruthlessly” hit thousands of sites a few hundred times a day. THAT is really annoying as it skews your stats.

Comment by Bjørn on 2006-11-29 00:46:15 +0000

Dave: yes, I know. They usually attack sites which have the stats indexed in Google to increase their own PR (because of the link-back).

I’d label that as spam.