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How To Find Pinterest Unfollowers – Pinterest Unfollow Tool

pinterest-unfollowersHow To Find Pinterest Unfollowers – Pinterest Unfollow Tool

Removing Pinterest users that do not follow you, or they unfollowed you is not and easy task. Pinterest does not make sorting and finding your unfollowers a simple process. In theory, you shouldn’t worry too much about how many people you follow and they don’t follow back, but in practice, there are some advantages to clean your profile.

You followed a few hundred people, and now your feed is filling up your feed with their pins, but they don’t get your latest, and greatest pinning creations. Or they followed you first, and you returned the favor, but later on they unfollowed you so that they look like authorities. Authorities my a… Let’s remove them from your feed, unfollow them.

Pinterest Unfollowers for IOS Enabled Devices (iPhone, or iPad)

The great news is that if you own an Apple device, such as a tablet, or an iPhone, there is an app that does specifically this. The app is called “Who Unfollow Me For Pinterest”, and you can grab it here: Who Unfollow Me For Pinterest – Yong Peng. I don’t own a MAC IOS device, so I can’t tell you how good the app is, but it’s there. A more famous app seems to have disappeared from the iTunes store, but the app was called Followers on Pinterest.

The Hard Way to Unfollow

Now, what do you do if you don’t have an IOS device? I have seen on the Internet the following suggestion:
Step one: Go to your “Followers” tab and copy/paste in a text document all of your followers.
Step Two: After this, go to your “Following” tab and compare it with your text list. Take one name at  a time from your “Following” tab, and search it in your followers text list. If you find the name, then it means that Pinterest user follows you, if you didn’t find them in the list, just unfollow them right away.

The Easier Way To Unfollow on Pinterest

How to get all followers on PinterestI didn’t even considered doing this, because I figured it would take me days to complete the process, and because I knew it had to be easier.

So, I started the work, and the first thing to was obviously to view page source, like any person with a little HTML knowledge would do. That doesn’t work. The code for the page is served dynamically, through Ajax, so you would only see around 115 users at a time. I think this is somewhat done on purpose, so that unfollowing is very hard. It is in Pinterest’s interest, to maintain an artificial buzz, like everybody follows everybody. Anyway, back to work, we need the entire list for our operation, so I started to search again. Then I realized that if we scroll down to the last item in the HTML page, and we right click the user, and choose inspect element, we also get the HTML of the page, except this time we get all the users in the HTML code.  Just right click on the body element, and choose copy as HTML.

Pinterest-Copy-HTMLAfter that paste the HTML code in a notepad, and you have all your users in a document, save that document as Followers-raw-text.txt.

IMPORTANT: Save the text as UTF8 encoding to preserve the special characters, and to avoid a script freeze when saving as Unicode.

Don’t worry if the text looks gibberish to you, you just need to find the following HTML tag: <h3>. Immediately after the tag you will find the username. Don’t try to save the document as HTML and see it in a browser. The browser will crash while loading that long list.

Pinterest Find UsersAt this point you have a few options to further clean up your list of followers, one way is to use Microsoft Word’s find and replace feature, which does a decent job but is not meant for these kind of operations. Another option is to use an advanced string find/filtering utilities, such as grep, sed, awk, etc… Here is a command I wrote to spit out a plain text list with usernames only:

awk-Pinterest-script-two

 

awk-Pinterest-script-one

I couldn’t “convince” WordPress to  allow me to post the command as a text, so I posted it as a picture. Sorry, you have to write down that manually.

At this point you have a list with followers, and a list with your followings. I heard people trying to use text compare utilities, but they don’t work if you have many followers, or if you have followed only partially boards. I know I did that. Another problem is that the usernames in the following and followers lists, are not in perfect synch chronologically, so any text comparison will be tripped. But if you know they are in the same order, it should be easy enough to use notepad++, or Winmerge, to compare the two lists and get your unfollowers.
I wrote a script in awk, to compare the two lists, and give me only the unfollowers, so I don’t have to compare manually the lists. Here is the command that does that:

awk "FNR==NR{a[$0];next}!($0 in a)" list-of-my-followers.txt list-of-followings.txt > unfollowers.txt

The list in the unfollowers.txt will contain your unfollowers. When you search for them in your Following tab, you will see two types of users, some with a button saying “Follow”, and some with a button “Unfollow”. The ones from your unfollowers.txt are either users whom you followed part of their boards, (the button will say Follow), or users whom you followed all of their boards, (the button will say Unfollow). This will prove a bit difficult to clean, but to make it easier, you might want to follow all of their boards, and maybe they’ll follow you back. If not, you can always clean up next time, if you want.

Future Development

The only thing I have to do now, is to figure out the unfollow link structure, so with a few more adjustments with awk and sed, we can create the unfollow links automatically, so we don’t have to search for the users in page. That’s my next step. If you have an idea about that, drop me a line in the comments, or send me a message with the link below.
In the mean time follow me on Pinterest I will follow back, :).

If you want to ask me a question, or if you want the list of your unfollowers delivered by email, send me a message using this form: Contact Me about the Pinterest Script

UPDATE: If all of these look gibberish to you, you can hire this guy on Fiverr, for five bucks he’ll do it for you. Actually, his gig gave me the idea to make my own script. I didn’t want to pay the five dollars. Anyway, here is the link:  Find Unfollowers on Pinterest

Chain Letters and Spam Email

Email Chain letters are one of the sneakiest and devious ways of SPAM. I consider them a particular case of social engineering.

Chain Letters Target Human Weakness and the Lack of Information.

Even though chain letters come always from your friends, and they look like their purpose is to spread “peace on Earth” or to give you an insightful perspective of life, or ask you to help someone in need, their purpose is Spamming.
You can recognize this by the encouragement to forward the message to your friends or to close the email circle or anything similar. Some of you came here as a result of my SPAM, (I apologize, I had to…).
Sometimes the spammer will go as far as threatening you to send to your friends or else something bad will happen. All of these are various sorts of psychological exploitation. They target human weakness and lack of knowledge.
Most of the times chain letters contain false, misleading, frightening, or foolish messages, Urban Legends, Virus Hoaxes. The Chain Letter has evolved now and it is more subtle nonetheless dangerous. It uses “good luck” promises, “missionary” messages, or even true philosophical dissertations.
No matter what is the method of persuasion, all the chain letters will convince you to send the letter to other people. It is very convincing and it targets human flaws. I am not an easy to scare person but I can remember myself in at least on occasion getting chills up my spine while reading the blackmail at the end of the email. Human brain is easily influenced, once the message read you will start, unconsciously, to act upon validating the prediction. It is a process similar to Hypnosis.
Best way to avoid such events is to delete the message without reading it.
There is also the positive message if you forward the message to 5 friends something wonderful will happen in your life. Who can resist such a promise? Me.

Is It Wrong to Propagate Chain Letters?

Short answer – YES – it’s wrong to propagate chain letters. Previous paragraph explains why.
Long answer:
Sometimes it is hard to ignore some of these messages and discard them. Their message is beautiful, and you would like to share it with your friends. There is not too wrong to do that IF and ONLY IF you follow these simple rules.
Use BCC field when addressing your email, (blind carbon copy). This will conceal the destination addresses.
When the chain letter arrives in your Inbox there are high chances to contain all the previous recipients into its body. Remove all the email addresses in the body, before forwarding the message. This is of no benefit to you, but it will benefit the community, and if many people do this harvesting addresses will be very difficult. Who knows on how many chain letters has circulated my email address?
If you really need to send chain letters, consider using your secondary email address.
Consistency on doing all of these will discourage the creators of such letters to write them, as the benefit from sending them will be null.

The image below shows a portion of the email body of a message that contains all the previous recipients of a chain letter. Using an email harvesting utility I got 417 email addresses only from this message.

Example of email Chain Letter
Chain Letter - Click to enlarge

What does the SPAMMER achieve by these kinds of emails?

They harvest email addresses. How do they do this? The principle is that the more an email circulate the more chances are to come back to the original sender. Even if it doesn’t come back it will go to another SPAMMER in the “Black Hat Web Marketing Community” and made public within the community. Then all the harvested email address will be shared or sold.
Another reason for circulating chain letters is scamming people. There are numerous scamming schemes circulating through emails.
There are also the hoaxes. A lot of chain letters warn about an upcoming virus or a computer threat. Most of them are hoaxes. Some of them are just simple hoax, but some other are cleverly crafted emails, so that when a recipient look for some of the keywords in the respective email, they would be directed by the search engine to targeted websites.

How can the Spammer harvest email addresses?

The main problem comes from the fact that most of the people will never think of hiding email addresses when they are forwarding messages. This makes that an email can sometimes contain hundreds or even thousands of addresses from all the people that forwarded it. The picture bellow depicts such a message.

What can you do to help?

First, whenever you send an email to a list of people add your addresses on the BCC field rather than CC or TO field. The BCC field will hide all the destination addresses.
If you forward a message, delete the transmission history in the message body. Check this article Prevent email SPAM for more information.
Break the chain! Delete the message and do not forward it. You have now the information. Stop for a few minutes before sending the email and think.
Comment on this post with positive or negative feedback. I can take critique.

I dedicate this article to Bogdan M. who first talked me about chain letters some 10 years ago.