Dirty IP: The Dark Side of Your Web Hustle

Written by on March 21, 2023

Dirty IP

No one went to your show. You spent more time putting out social media and email blasts than you did recording your first album, but it’s the end of the night and all your band did was test the acoustics of an empty club. What went wrong? Relax. Your music doesn’t suck. You might just have a dirty IP.

A dirty IP. What’s that? Is it like the old cable channel that came in scrambled, or is it something fun, and maybe a little gross, like the dirty water hot dogs making their way through New York City streets everyday?

No, despite the fun moniker, a “dirty IP” is an internet thing. No, not that kind of internet thing. Let me explain.

Dirty IP in a Blink

You’re reading this on some version of the internet. Maybe at house, your office – maybe driving illegally on your phone cranking 5G. But no matter what, you got an address, called an IP address. Right now, you’re the only one who has that address, unless your little sister is Googling “fratricide” in the other room. But you got an address; an Internet Protocol, or IP address.

So this thing can get dirty. Who knew? And it’s not just the furry porn sites that get it dirty (they can,) but also surfing to any generally sketchy site, Googling terms like “fratricide,” or downloading that too-good-to-be-true software that will make you a six figure dynamo next week.

How to Tell if You’re Soiled

You wanna know if your IP needs a buff and wax? Check out the CAPTCHAs. Are you getting them? Are you having to figure out how many images contain a stop light? That’s really not to protect you from the site – it’s there to protect the site from you.

And oh yeah… the reason you’re reading this on an art, music, and culture website is that a big chunk of artists and musicians’ promotional strategy is to blast stuff out everywhere, usually copy-and-paste stuff. And that’ll strip the shine off your IP.

Dirty Spam Recipes

Emails from a dirty IP go to spam. And, conversely, sending people emails that they hit the spam button on will dirty up your IP. And if an email service like Gmail thinks you’re grimy, every other email service will follow suit. And there’s no email you can send (even if it won’t be marked as ‘spam’,) to just have it reversed.

What to Do?

It’s important when you’re online, or trying to promote yourself, that you don’t act like a desperate spammy word-cannon. Because once your IP is dirty, it can take a long time of good behavior to clean it. Best bet is not to let it get dirty in the first place. For example, if your Google search bar auto-fills “FREE PORN SITES,” you’re probably gonna want to stop doing that (and maybe question your life choices.) Stop falling for horseshit promises on the web (this will probably save you four easy payments of $49.95 too,) and, you know, generally be a good internet citizen.

Of course, you can find out if your IP is dirty online. But why take the easy way out?

If you want people to respect you and whatever hustle you got going on music-wise, you need a good rep on the internet. Build networks, relationships. Find ways to make people happy t learn what’s going on with you. Or offer people beer cozies.

So make sure your mouse hand is always sanitized. And maybe find your porn sites on Yelp.

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