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Google Proxy Groups
Google proxy groups have a few good purposes. Whether you want to be friendly and help a few friends quickly find secure proxies or start up a small business selling listings and traffic to proxy owners, you'll find that it's a fairly simple process. Proxy websites are just services that mask one's true browsing. If your school or workplace has a web filter or surf barrier up, you can go on a web proxy and surf normally through their window. The filter won't be able to see your true browsing and will just see a random and unknown URL for the whole time. If you want to get on Myspace, Facebook at school, or just play games during class, then these are your answer.
In case you are looking to simply join a google proxy group and you stumbled across this article, then I can send you on your way quickly. Just go to the Google Groups page (http://groups.google.com/grphp?hl=en&tab=wg) and do a search for proxies or proxy groups. Just join one and enjoy your freedom.
If you're planning to set one up, then you'll also need to go to Google Groups page and get ready for the next step.
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Setting up the Proxy Group
Well, Google keeps this fairly simple. To start up a Google proxy group, you just need to click that little button that says "create a group" on the right hand side of the screen. If you already have a Google account, then just sign in with that. If not, then you'll need to register for an account. Gmail is a good email service anyway, so it's not exactly a sacrifice. Then you need to punch in a Nickname for your group. Make it something that you will remember, since it's just for your records.
After this work you'll get to the registration screen. Now you just have to come up with an official name for the group, an email for the group and write up a nice description. Make sure that you add in the words "proxy group" to your description along with whatever proxy users you want to target. A few good keywords in the description will help some random users stumble onto it. You will have to decide how strict you want to be in securing it. A public group will allow your members to post things. It could help make a small community that shares new proxies and effectively does your work for you. It will also open it up for spam. Restricted is just too strict though, since you want random searchers to be able to find and join. Announcement might be the safest for what a google proxy group needs. It will let the manager make regular announcement and everyone is able to see them, yet the average member can't flood the board with spam.
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Getting Members for Your Google Proxy Group
Technically you need to get members for your proxy group while also populating your board with web proxies. I need to maintain some degree of order though, so just remember that you will do the two separate tasks at roughly the same time. People won't want to join an empty group and proxy owners won't care about a google proxy group with no members.
To get new members for your google group, you need to market it. Obviously this is easier said than done, since many people would kill for a dream system of Internet marketing. That said, there are a few basic tricks. Take advantage of your possible targets. Try to get some advertising on arcade websites. They might be willing to allow for a small free ad if they think it will increase their traffic by getting more school age children. In the same vein, try to get a few new members to spread the word on Facebook. You might even want to hire a Facebook or Myspace advertiser. You can find some fairly cheap rates and your returns could be fairly high.
Obviously the best result will be if you can get a strong word of mouth going. If you provide a list of good proxies regularly, then your google proxy group should receive a lot of natural traffic as it is shared amongst friends.
These are obviously just starting points. Like I said, perfecting Internet marketing is a task that warrants entire books. You should be able to find your way from this jumping off point though.
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Getting Proxies for Your Proxy Group
This is the easy part. It may be tricky to really build up your group, but getting the daily list of proxies is easy. The only real trick to this is that you can't just grab the first page of results for "proxy" and call it a day. The first several pages of web proxies are already blocked. You need to find the new ones that are still unknown to the filters. Proxy life cycles are very short and you have to be ready to constantly update.
One easy way is if you're running both sides of the equation. If you're running your own proxies, then you can easily just start up a new one each day and list it. This is actually a good idea for a fairly easy web business. It won't make you rich but a few proxies and some free advertising can earn a pretty penny.
If you don't have your own proxies, then you'll need to look for others. You can always take the easy way out and take the results from other groups and directories. The only real trick is that you have to look for a slightly remote list, since you run the risk of advertising blocked proxies. This is naturally a bad thing.
The ideal way is to just ask though. You can go to any webmaster forum (Digitalpoint is a good one) and you can look for a proxy discussion thread. Join the board and post an honest request for proxies for your google group. Most people will be more than happy to give you some links. I saw this exact thing happen on Digitalpoint just a week ago, so it's still a viable strategy. The great news is that you can even work your way up to selling listings in your group. Once you've built up a membership, you shouldn't have a problem selling listings in your group for less than a dollar or so. Again, you won't get rich, but it's a good business option.
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This is about everything that you could ever want to know about Google proxy groups. You should know what they're for, where to find them, how to start them, how to increase membership for a Google proxy group and how to find proxies for the group list. This should either give a good start to a new business venture or give you a bit more knowledge about a useful function of the Internet. Either way, I hope it answers all your questions.
- Screenshots provided by author
- Author's own experience