Fake Registration Day

A movement is underfoot to undermine news sites that require registration in order to read their content by submitting fake registrations en masse:

We, the undersigned, wish to demonstrate the pointless nature of forced web site registration schemes and the dubious demographic data they collect.
On November 13th we will each register an account using fake details at one or more of these top 10 offending sites:

While sympathizing with the sentiment, I see a couple of problems with this. First, even if you submit fake details, you still need to submit a valid email address (there are ways around this, but I bet most of the people participating will give their real email). Second, when you visit their site they'll know your ip address, from which they can get some demographic info (such as what city you're in). In other words, it's hard to give them completely misleading information, so they may still end up benefitting from fake registrations. (via J-Walk)

Advertising Pranks

Posted on Thu Aug 25, 2005


Doing a fake registration seems to violate the cardinal rule of pranks: It's likely to be more trouble to the prankster than the amount of trouble it causes to the target.
Posted by Big Gary in Dallas  on  Thu Aug 25, 2005  at  06:28 PM
I don't know Gary. I've been know to register fake names on websites.
Posted by Dany  on  Thu Aug 25, 2005  at  07:58 PM
There's something more effective that completely defeats the purpose of requiring registration: it's called BugMeNot.com and it lets you login using someone else's fake registration.
Posted by eriC draveS  on  Thu Aug 25, 2005  at  11:26 PM
You can type in fake email like .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) and check your Dodgeit mailbox without any password. http://www.dodgeit.com
Posted by AJ  on  Fri Aug 26, 2005  at  12:35 AM
http://www.bugmenot.com works great...no need to register and it takes only seconds to find a valid name/pw.
Posted by evan  on  Fri Aug 26, 2005  at  09:25 AM
I use a fake email to register. You could always use a public library computer to do this - b/c of the I.P. Most public libraries have their demographic info as their main branch. You might be 50 miles from the branch - general, but still effective.

My I.P. info is actually Cleveland, OH - my company's corporate headquarters.

But, it does seem more trouble that it's worth. Those sites probably get fake information all day long anyway.
Posted by Maegan  on  Sun Aug 28, 2005  at  05:10 AM
Same for me, I'm 2,000 miles away from the registered address.
Posted by Jorge  on  Mon Aug 29, 2005  at  04:35 AM
I think it is a good idea, as many of the email addresses gathered by spammers are done so via registration point data bases.

And ironic, given Alex's new comment board system. I am still waiting for assurance that I won't be deluged with more spam or charged for my registry.
Posted by DFStuckey  on  Tue Aug 30, 2005  at  02:24 AM
If you're just hella-paranoid, this is all fine and well, but one of the main reasons they gather that info is to geo-target their banner ads. As for spam, my work email address is registered on four of those sites (NY Post, Wash Times, Tribune, LA Times) and I've never received an email from any of them.
Posted by Daniel  on  Tue Aug 30, 2005  at  11:51 AM
Highly crafty and intriguing article. It highlights the intricate relationship between the subject and its essence. It is highly informative.
Posted by Nick  on  Wed Aug 31, 2005  at  06:17 AM
Frankly, I reckon that giving a news site an email address in exchange for free access to all their news content is a pretty good deal. I used to spend a few hundred quid a year on newspapers - now I just have to tolerate a small amount of email to a freemail address I use for such purposes. Where's the offense?
Posted by pail in prague  on  Mon Sep 05, 2005  at  03:09 AM
A very late comment, as I just saw the item while doing some catching up. I once did a fake registration for an online newspaper (not one of those mentioned), using a fake name, fake location and (since there was no password I had to receive by e-mail) fake e-mail address. Took a few months, but I started getting spam from the paper at an e-mail address I had that did not contain my real name, but addressed to the fake name I'd used while registering (so I'm sure the spamming was no coincidence). Made me feel that no matter how dirty the tactics you fight with, they'll always have a dirtier one at their disposal.
Posted by Stewart  on  Fri Sep 23, 2005  at  08:42 AM
I am checking is it true or not
Posted by Dr. Faheem  on  Fri Mar 03, 2006  at  07:00 AM
It is true I just did it.
Posted by Family Guy  on  Fri Feb 06, 2009  at  03:32 PM
hey i am very kind
Posted by maddy  on  Fri Dec 10, 2010  at  09:14 AM
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