Apple Ping network slammed with spam

Apple Ping gets off to a rocky start.

Apple Ping is having some spam problems. Lots of them. So is Ping finished? Probably not.

Earlier this week, Apple launched a platform called Ping, which is built into the latest iteration of iTunes. Ping is a sort of Facebook or MySpace for iTunes people: You can use the service to share your favorite songs and videos, suggest content to friends, and search for concerts and events in your area. But Ping has gotten off to a rocky start.

First, Mashable reported that many people were having problems accessing Ping. Then were some integration issues with Facebook. Now comes news that Ping is being flooded by spam messages – many of which, ironically, appear to be the kind of iPhone and iPad advertisements that so often show up on Facebook feeds.

"Most of the security industry has been pointing out the migration of spam from an email-only venture to blog/forum comments, Facebook, Twitter and other Web 2.0 platforms," Chester Wisniewski writes today on the Sophos blog. "But apparently Apple didn't consider this when designing Ping, as the service implements no spam or URL filtering. It is no big shock that less than 24 hours after launch, Ping is drowning in scams and spams."

OK, so the problems for Ping are daunting. But are they enough to sink the fledging social network? Probably not. Apple has pushed past bad launches before.

Back in June, of course, Apple released the iPhone 4, which was greeted warmly by reviewers, but skewered in the press for an apparent problem – the "death grip" – with the wraparound antenna. Much noise ensued, and eventually, Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced that Apple would issue free bumper cases to all eligible consumers. Problem solved, more or less.

"Despite the waves of controversy that surrounded the iPhone 4 within days of its launch, the latest Apple release is outperforming almost every other smart phone in the industry in terms of overall customer satisfaction and meeting owners' expectations," researchers at a site called ChangeWave wrote in August, noting that the vast majority of customers were happy with their iPhone 4 handsets.

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