The main trend by the spammers around here seems to be trying to look like a local. They are putting out white coroplast signs with handwritten advertisements on them. The flashier signs get sharked or picked up by Code Enforcement too quickly for them, I guess.
Some common pitches are "Rent to Own", "Lease Purchase", "House for Sale 3/2", etc. All say things like "Bad Credit OK" or "No Qualifying", "24 hr msg", etc.
They put two, four or more signs in major intersections.
Taking these signs down just seems to cause them to be replaced with more. Sharking (cutting) the last half of the phone numbers off seems to cause them to stay away a little longer.
I am wondering who is out there removing these in my area. I see some signs that vanish before I get back to them. I don't know if these signs are being removed by CAUSS members or Code Enforcement. It would be nice to know who is helping me here. If you are reading this, please post something here to let me know.
#6. "RE: Handwritten White Coroplast Street Spam Signs" In response to Reply # 1
A couple of weeks ago, I picked up some signs that, at a glance, appeared to be handwritten -- but a closer inspection revealed, as you suggested, that they were actually printed. However, this morning I picked up half a dozen signs from the exact same locations that actually were written with a magic marker. (Either that or its the cleverest print job I've ever seen.) I like to think that they're tired of losing their printed signs, and that I've convinced them that their signs don't have a very long shelf-life, so they might as well make them as inexpensively as possible. (Maybe in a few more weeks I'll be able to convince them that it's not worth their time to make them at all.)
#2. "RE: Handwritten White Coroplast Street Spam Signs" In response to Reply # 0
This treand is also showing up in the DFW area also. I picked up some sixteen last week that I first thought were handprinted. Next day after a closer look, it was evident they were not in fact hand printed.
#3. "RE: Handwritten White Coroplast Street Spam Signs" In response to Reply # 2
Quoted from an illegal sign spammer's website:
> Begin Quote > Here's what often works. Put your signs out Friday evenings after 5PM. Then pick them up Sunday evenings. The bandit sign patrol seldom works on weekends. ... < End Quote <
Comment from NoSpam: NEWS FLASH - CAUSS does work weekends! It must be funny to see spammers when they go out to pick up their signs and find out that part of the phone number is missing from the illegal signs!
> Begin Quote > Here's something we've noticed in our area. The sign enforcers don't seem to be so quick to remove hand-lettered signs. 2x2 poster board with bold, felt pen lettering looks homemade and gets attention. I believe one investor here in the Phoenix are has not only figured this out, but he has the signs printed to look hand-lettered. He uses a generic message like "For Sale. 3/2 Low Down - No Qualifying"... and then a phone number.
You could do the same with a message like "Family Needs 3/2 Home in This Neighborhood. Must Move This Week! Phone Number". < End Quote <
This kind of information sharing is probably why the spammers are doing the same things in other parts of the country. We also share information. Our difference is, we are helping fight illegal signs. The spammers are sharing ways to break the law.
#4. "RE: Handwritten White Coroplast Street Spam Signs" In response to Reply # 0
Suggest you also post your message in the General Forum--because this does seem to be a nationwide trend.
I posted about this about a month ago, where in California the same technique is being used (bright yellow coroplast screwed onto wooden stakes that are then tie-wrapped to all manner of fences, poles, etc.)
As you said, these spammers are persistent. I keep taking them down (leaving a few sharked ones up to send a message) and they are up again about a week later. Trust me, they will fold before I do.
These are most definitely hand-written and not printed (I compared).
Idea: Keep calling the 800 number on the signs to make a statement about how you are removing their spam. As others have said, it costs the spammers $.50 a call--so it won't take long to run up some nice charges for them, maybe motivating them to stop.
Also, I imagine this is some kind of scam--anyone know the angle?
"It's 10 p.m. Do you know what Dumpster your street spam is sleeping in?"
#5. "RE: Handwritten White Coroplast Street Spam Signs" In response to Reply # 4
>As you said, these spammers are persistent. I keep taking them down (leaving a few sharked ones up to send a message) and they are up again about a week later. Trust me, they will fold before I do.
There's the spirit! Unwavering removal does indeed drive them off the streets eventually. > >These are most definitely hand-written and not printed (I >compared).
Come to think of it, they could write out about 100 signs in an hour easily, so handwriting does seem a not-too-difficult option for them.
>Idea: Keep calling the 800 number on the signs to make a >statement about how you are removing their spam. As others >have said, it costs the spammers $.50 a call--so it won't >take long to run up some nice charges for them, maybe >motivating them to stop.
Alway use a pay phone. If they have an answering machine, just call every time you are near a pay phone--dial the number and leave the handset off the hook and go about your business.
>Also, I imagine this is some kind of scam--anyone know the angle?
It's many kinds of scams and associated sleaziness, along with outright illegality (people acting as real-estate brokers without a license). There are explanations and links throughout the CAUSS forums.