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Thread: Grammarly

  1. #1
    Grumpy writer and editor Absolute Sage Gillhoughly's Avatar
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    Grammarly

    A friend of mine (pro writer and editor) got a semi-spam email from grammarly.com.

    They offered a 15.00 Amazon gift voucher if she would mention their brand on her blog. (One presumes they would want it mentioned in a favorable way.)

    She did a google search for the name + complaints and declined.

    She disliked that they addressed her by her first name--she's touchy about getting formal introductions first--the bribery aspect, as well as the fact they didn't bother to look up her name on Wikipedia. She's pretty well known in some genres.

    She's not at all tempted to try them out. The google search indicated it would be a bad idea.

    I thought it might be a good idea to open a thread on them in case others had gotten similar spam.

  2. #2
    I write stuff and break boards. dragonjax's Avatar
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    I just got my Grammarly invite today, also for $15. Some authors have gotten them for up to $100. And, of course, that offer for a cup of coffee, if ever in San Fransisco.
    "Undying Love," a short story by Jackie Kessler in FANTASY FOR GOOD - a charity anthology to help fight colon cancer

  3. #3
    Disapproving plot bun disapproves. FluffBunny's Avatar
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    Domain registration contains little info. The agent on their business license is a Yuriy Timen whose LinkedIn page lists him as GdotCom's Director of Online Marketing.

    The LinkedIn page also states, "Grammarly is a growing consumer Internet SaaS company, creating software and services that perfect written English." An "SaaS" is a "software as a service" company; in other words, they rent access to a particular piece of software on a subscription basis. It sounds like expensive subscription access to a (possibly) glorified grammar-checker.

    His profile also claims that Grammarly is "trusted by 3,000,000+ including...Fortune 100 companies." Fortune 100 companies loooooove spamvertised services. Love 'em.

    ETA: I notice their website makes no mention of Fortune 100 companies and restrain themselves to, "...which are also licensed by more than 100 leading universities and corporations."

    ETA #2: An interesting article in The Economist here - http://www.economist.com/blogs/johns...ammar-software I especially liked:

    So what happened with Ben Yagoda's text, which Grammarly had flagged for 10 nonexistent errors? Mr Hoover says that Grammarly "isn't intended for professional writers to achieve the next level of language mastery, or to judge artistic prose." Grammarly is "meant to proofread mainstream text like student papers, cover letters and proposals."
    (bolding added)
    Last edited by FluffBunny; 06-11-2013 at 07:32 AM. Reason: fixed quotation code
    House-rabbits: Can't live without 'em and can't stop 'em from ordering thermonuclear devices off the Internet.

    Please check all weapons, weasels and cilantro before entering. Thank you.

  4. #4
    Mushroom Polenth's Avatar
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    I've had two from them. $25 alleging I was nominated as a favourite blogging author. And a second one of $15 on the basis that I'm self-published. I assume they're sending them to everyone they can, as they're worded in that generic spam way.
    * Polenth *

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    Sunstruck - Bigfoot Urban Fantasy Novel

  5. #5
    THE EXPLORERS is out now!! Toothpaste's Avatar
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    I got one today too! Didn't like the concept for the site so deleted the email. Kind of fun to see my instinct was right .

  6. #6
    practical experience, FTW
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    For God's sake, people, there's a lot of free and very good grammar info out there, notably my favorite, the Purdue OWL:

    http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/

    caw
    Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it.

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  7. #7
    Disapproving plot bun disapproves. FluffBunny's Avatar
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    I'd like to ask Mr. Temen, their Director of Online Marketing, why the company is spamming authors, a group their service "isn't intended for" per the company CEO.
    House-rabbits: Can't live without 'em and can't stop 'em from ordering thermonuclear devices off the Internet.

    Please check all weapons, weasels and cilantro before entering. Thank you.

  8. #8
    It's a doggy dog world benbradley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillhoughly View Post
    A friend of mine (pro writer and editor) got a semi-spam email from grammarly.com.
    ...
    She's not at all tempted to try them out. The google search fact that they send spam indicated it would be a bad idea.
    Yes, I agree...
    Quote Originally Posted by FluffBunny View Post
    I'd like to ask Mr. Temen, their Director of Online Marketing, why the company is spamming.
    Yeah, that.
    Ello.
    NaNoWriMo 2014: Unknown.
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  9. #9
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    Now I haz a sad. I didn't get one of these spams.

  10. #10
    Disapproving plot bun disapproves. FluffBunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald View Post
    Now I haz a sad. I didn't get one of these spams.
    They were afraid of a line-by-line take-down.
    House-rabbits: Can't live without 'em and can't stop 'em from ordering thermonuclear devices off the Internet.

    Please check all weapons, weasels and cilantro before entering. Thank you.

  11. #11
    Grumpy writer and editor Absolute Sage Gillhoughly's Avatar
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    Aw shucks, she thought that guy really wanted to have coffee with her. She bought a new ballgown and everything.

    What a pack of jerkoffs.

    And....

  12. #12
    THE EXPLORERS is out now!! Toothpaste's Avatar
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    The coffee line at the end was funny. Trying to give the impression that this was a personalized email sent just to me. Points for effort.

  13. #13
    Formerly Phantom of Krankor. Torgo's Avatar
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    10. Print "Computer programs can't parse natural language well enough to proof or copyedit! ",
    20. Goto 10

  14. #14
    Sockpuppet
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    Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald View Post
    Now I haz a sad. I didn't get one of these spams.
    That's because none dares trifle with the Great and Powerful YOG!!!!!

  15. #15
    Such a nasty woman SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    A few of my writer-friends have reported on Facebook that they've received spammy messages from Grammarly too. I didn't get one, though. I am far too SCARY for them to approach me. ROAR!

  16. #16
    Disapproving plot bun disapproves. FluffBunny's Avatar
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    Alas! I am small and meek and therefore escaped the spammers' notice. Since James and Old Hack both missed out and are both well-known, I can only assume that the Modly Powers invested by AW protect them, as is meet and just.
    House-rabbits: Can't live without 'em and can't stop 'em from ordering thermonuclear devices off the Internet.

    Please check all weapons, weasels and cilantro before entering. Thank you.

  17. #17
    Wilde about Oscar aliceshortcake's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FluffBunny View Post
    Alas! I am small and meek and therefore escaped the spammers' notice.
    I think it's the whiskers and twitchy nose that puts them off.

  18. #18
    Boldly going nowhere in particular. Jess Haines's Avatar
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    I got the $50 offer a few days ago. Saw there was a teeny, tiny unsubscribe button on the bottom, and that they use MailChimp, so I reported them for unsolicited spam and unsubbed.

    Then I got another one yesterday offering $15 using a different mail service. Also reported them for spam.

    And sent a reply that I would be blogging about their spam and attempts at bribery if they didn't take me off their mailing list.

    Grumpy? Me? Perish the thought.
    Jess Haines
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    Latest Title: Smoke and Mirrors

  19. #19
    Disapproving plot bun disapproves. FluffBunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jess Haines View Post
    I got the $50 offer a few days ago. Saw there was a teeny, tiny unsubscribe button on the bottom, and that they use MailChimp, so I reported them for unsolicited spam and unsubbed.

    Then I got another one yesterday offering $15 using a different mail service. Also reported them for spam.

    And sent a reply that I would be blogging about their spam and attempts at bribery if they didn't take me off their mailing list.

    Grumpy? Me? Perish the thought.
    Wow! $50 a few days ago, now down to $15 yesterday? Wait another day or so and it'll be free! Or maybe they'll throw in some Ginzu knives or something. *waits to see Grammarly being hawked by some fast-talking guy wearing a headset mic at 2am on public access cable next*
    House-rabbits: Can't live without 'em and can't stop 'em from ordering thermonuclear devices off the Internet.

    Please check all weapons, weasels and cilantro before entering. Thank you.

  20. #20
    Sockpuppet
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    Quote Originally Posted by FluffBunny View Post
    Wow! $50 a few days ago, now down to $15 yesterday? Wait another day or so and it'll be free! Or maybe they'll throw in some Ginzu knives or something. *waits to see Grammarly being hawked by some fast-talking guy wearing a headset mic at 2am on public access cable next*
    And with either an Aussie or British accent as well....

  21. #21
    It's a doggy dog world benbradley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torgo View Post
    10. Print "Computer programs can't yet parse natural language well enough to proof or copyedit! ",
    20. Goto 10
    And when they do, it's a sure thing that good ones will NOT be promoted by spam.

    When I was actively fighting email spam (back in the olden.dayz), it was becoming effective to report the the spamvertized website to its host, and even to its domain registrar. It's more of a bother to get a new hosting account than to get a new email blasting service.

    The Grammarly.com domain is registered at Godaddy, and the site appears to be hosted by Amazon.

    I'm just sayin'...
    Ello.
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  22. #22
    Writer Beware's Faithful Igor Richard White's Avatar
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    I just got my Grammarly email today. Apparently they got my name through one of my friends on FB who has liked their page.

    No money for me. Just an offer for a free premium account.

    I feel gypped.

  23. #23
    I grow my own catnip JulieB's Avatar
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    Weeelll. I just got their spam.

    They offered me a "free premium review account," which I take to mean a trail of their premium service.

    I'll pass, thanks.

  24. #24
    Boldly going nowhere in particular. Jess Haines's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FluffBunny View Post
    Wow! $50 a few days ago, now down to $15 yesterday? Wait another day or so and it'll be free! Or maybe they'll throw in some Ginzu knives or something. *waits to see Grammarly being hawked by some fast-talking guy wearing a headset mic at 2am on public access cable next*
    I know, right? I'm so insulted. They can't even bother to keep track of how much they bribed people for before so they can keep their repeat attempts consistent.

    In other news, I now have this mental image of some skeezy guy with super slicked back hair, a threadbare suit and a shark's grin going, "Blog about our crap and we'll throw in scamming your writer friends for 200 easy payments of $39.95!" or something.
    Jess Haines
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    "It doesn't get much better for pure urban fantasy than Jess Haines." --All Things Urban Fantasy

    Latest Title: Smoke and Mirrors

  25. #25
    Seen 'em come, seen 'em go Gravity's Avatar
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    Unless they offer me a night of hot monkey love with Kiera Knightly I'm going to take a pass ...
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