What to do when an ad you posted on Craigslist to sell chickens gets a "surprising" response...


6 Years
Sep 16, 2013
Tired of those dreadful spammers & scammers in that come into your email box? Yes, I know all about adjusting the settings and just emptying the spam box, and the old “ignore it and it will go away” routine. But haven't you ever felt like sometimes there's the occasion where someone sends you something that gets under your skin and causes your “feathers to ruffle”...

Case in point – here's what happened to me this week after I posted advertisements on Craigslist in the “Farm & Garden” section to sell some chickens. A couple of days ago I looked at my email account and found I had finally received a response from an ad I had placed. Yayyy... I thought, I'm gonna sell a chicken! I opened the email and my excitement was immediately crushed and my feelings turned to anger, anger of the laughable kind. What I was looking at was a solicitation for porn! Other than the proverbial “choke the chicken” innuendo I was flabbergasted & confused as to how someone could responded to my advertisements like this. How could someone mistake the “Farm & Garden” section for the “Adult /Personal” section?! I found out several friends who have posted ads on Craigslist that this has happened to them too. Was I really surprised? No. It's the internet, and S#!+ like this happens all the time. So I sat back and thought for awhile and watched the emails just roll into my email... yes, I flagged them for spam/scam as usual, but this time I felt like I really needed to do something!

I gathered my thoughts and turned and waged an all out war of sorts on the emails.
- I responded to every single one of them, with words full of rage I wanted to annoy them, to scare them, for them to remember me! I then gathered email header information to get information on the IP addresses as to where they were coming from, turns out they were coming from “corporate” servers!
- Then I took the biggest chance of all, I opened the links that were contained in the emails! A lot of people would not go that far for one big reason – VIRUSES! Oh I wouldn't even so much as dare to touch links like those on my computer that has a Windows operating system, it would probably cripple it! So instead I took my low-end thrift store 7 year old computer, my other computer, the one with a Linux operating system. When I opened those links - voil`a – we have a website!
- Next step, do a domain registry search on the website! Looking at the information in the URL I copied and pasted that into the registry and it churned out the information on the web host and the website IP address!
I contacted the web host who contacted their clients, the website owners, and this is what happened next...

1) “I just received a complaint regarding my affiliate's email you have received. I made sure he won't reach you ever again but could you please give me 24-48 hours to completely take off your email below?
If you have ANY other emails you also want taken off, please list them all here so I can get rid of them for you all at once.
Once again, sorry about this. Let me know, please get back to me.
-Admin "

2) “Dear Admin - Thank you! The only other thing I ask to be done is to please STOP sending emails to people who advertise their things that are for sale on Craigslist in the "Farm & Garden" section. This is how this all started with me - someone started sending me porn messages through the advertisement I had on Craigslist trying to sell my chickens! I am not the only person this has happened to, I have several friends who have advertised their livestock for sale only to receive porn messages like the very same one's I have. My friends have stopped using Craigslist because of this and I can completely understand why. As a result of all this I am unable to sell my chickens and find them a good home because no one feels comfortable going anywhere in any sections on Craigslist because of this unwanted & inappropriate material being sent to them. The actions of your affiliate's have been destructive to people who are legitimately trying to find good homes for their animals and sell their goods
to help pay their bills. So again, I repeat - please tell your affiliate to STOP soliciting porn in the "Farm & Garden" section on Craigslist.
Thank you very much for your time & assistance! ~ Carrie “

3).“Hi Carrie,

I have already told my affiliate to stop messing with CL period. I am really sorry about this. The truth is that a lot of other people mess with CL and they are not necessary my affiliates. This is out of my control. But yes, you are right, I can see why you are frustrated.

Just to confirm though – is carrieb####@com the only email you want me to remove?

I really am sorry about this. Wishing you best of luck with selling those chickens too! Take cares and let me know if you need anymore assistance!

-Admin Angella”

4). “Hello Angella,

Yes, that is my email and yes, please remove it! Thank you so much for your help! I do realize a lot of other people mess with CL like you said, and I will continue do the same to track down the website and email owners like I did here. I will also educate my friends on how to do this as well, so hopefully this will make places like CL a better & safer place to advertise. Should I, or anyone I know, run into anymore problems that are your affiliates of yours at least I know I can get in touch with you to get the problem resolved! Thanks again for your help! ~ Carrie “


Now do I believe for a second this will stop? Ummm, NO! I'll be honest though – it sure was nice to vent my frustrations directly at the source of the problem and shake their tree a little!
Wow that must be irritating for you. :( I'm glad you got to talk to that person. I hate spam, there's nothing good about it. Just people looking to give others trouble. :rant
I have to admit, even though it caused me to suffer a severe stress headache, it was a lot of fun being able to "surprise" them like I did!

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