Joining the forum and spam

JohnMF

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There seems to be more spam and more complaints about spam than usual on the forum lately.

I know TPF prides its self on being a family forum, hence the censorship of swear words and NSFW* disclaimers on anything that has the vaguest amount of flesh on show, yet, there can be proper hardcore images floating about in the off topic area for long periods of time if there are no mods about.

As all this spam is made by first post spam bots. do you think it would be worth having an approval system for new members? I don't mean any sort of fancy test, just a case of a new member making some sort of statement (only a sentence) about why they want to join, when they first sign up. Then they would be approved by a mod. I'm pretty sure that can be set up easily in Vbulletin.

It would certainly stop the bots joining and posting.

I've joined forums which have used this system in the past and found them to be some of the better communities.

I know it sounds like more work for mods, but it could actually be less. no more deleting spam posts. plus it would be more more family friendly
 

terri

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Spammers seem to get around our word recognition filter with relative ease, I agree.

We do regret the amount of spam that contains porn, and the mods, admins and spam cop team do the best we can to keep up with it. Just continue to report it as soon as you see it.

What you are suggesting is possible, just not very practical given the rapid growth of the place. Approval like this has to be done on the admin level and even if we doubled the admins, it's just not a practical idea, and would more than likely turn off legitimate new members. Fortunately we still have more of those than spammers. ;)
 

elsaspet

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Yeah, that seems like an awful lot of extra work for the mods, for what is actually a small amount of bothersome spam.
Most of us general forum members are pretty good about ignoring (or lambasting) the scammers, I mean spammers. :)
 
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JohnMF

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i understand what your saying. It's just a question of whether the folks in charge think it's worth it. It would pretty much solve the problem though. Deleting every piece of individual spam as it appears is no more practical than approving each new user would be.

It's not like the place is struggling for new members. If some one was serious about joining a forum that they thought they would enjoy being a part of, then waiting a day or two to be able to post wouldn't be a problem. I'm not suggesting block the forum from view to none members, they would still be able to read all the posts until they're approved. so i don't think new people would be put off.

I know it's a big change, but change doesn't have to be a bad thing. :)

I also think it would improve the forum in general too
 

ferny

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Bad idea. Going through that process puts people off joining. I know because I never join sites like that. If I've found a site through a search engine and want join it and then find out I can't interact for a couple of days I move to the next site in the search results.

And how do you know they haven't a got a script to work around it? All they need is a database of lines and some will get through.

As I said before, go and look on the vbb site and ask what they suggest. Someone will have advice.
 

Alex_B

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- What if there was simply a delay of one hour or so between signing up and being able to post?


- or what if the first post of a new member needs to be approved by a moderator or the spam police


I am sure both would reduce the amount of spam drastically.
 

wildmaven

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If I were to come here and find that I had to wait an hour before being approved, I'd probably google and find another forum, honestly. :p
 

Alex_B

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If I were to come here and find that I had to wait an hour before being approved, I'd probably google and find another forum, honestly. :p

that is probably the problem ;)
 
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JohnMF

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alright then. Seems that's not a good idea.

what about this...

do you think changing the name of the "Off Topic" section would help? I've noticed on lots of forums that the spam seems to appear mostly in the sections called Off Topic. That makes me think that the script these bots use may have an instruction to look for the phrase "Off Topic" and post there. Almost every forum has an off topic section so it would make sense.
 

Alex_B

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but then again i see lots of spam in the galleries as well ...
 

Battou

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alright then. Seems that's not a good idea.

what about this...

do you think changing the name of the "Off Topic" section would help? I've noticed on lots of forums that the spam seems to appear mostly in the sections called Off Topic. That makes me think that the script these bots use may have an instruction to look for the phrase "Off Topic" and post there. Almost every forum has an off topic section so it would make sense.

Actually no, you really do not want to eliminate any "hot spots" it helps them get found and delt with sooner when they are commonplace.
 

karissa

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We have defiantly noticed an increase in spam and have taken a few small measures to help deal with it in a timely manner however the bottom line is, there really is no way to stop it completely right now. This spam problem has not just hit this forum. Many blogs have also noted an increase in spam posts.
The best way to help us all right now is to make use of the report post option. Using that button sends emails to the appropriate people notifying us that a post has been reported. We are a growing forum and are open to ideas and do make changes.
 

Battou

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We have defiantly noticed an increase in spam and have taken a few small measures to help deal with it in a timely manner however the bottom line is, there really is no way to stop it completely right now. This spam problem has not just hit this forum. Many blogs have also noted an increase in spam posts.
The best way to help us all right now is to make use of the report post option. Using that button sends emails to the appropriate people notifying us that a post has been reported. We are a growing forum and are open to ideas and do make changes.

No one ever did answer my question, When I chunk a pile of links into a report, do they come up as useable links in the E-Mail that gets sent?

I have done it a couple times and report them all at once and save some staff some space in the spamreport boxes and as a means of evading the ten second thing during heavy flow from a single bot.
 

karissa

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Hmm, well, I'll put it this way. I've never had a link say it was bad. So I guess it works. lol
 

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