Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

The Great Spam Storm Of 13-14 July 2012


  • Please log in to reply
54 replies to this topic

#35 DFINITLYDISTRUBD

DFINITLYDISTRUBD

    tsilcycrotom live

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2291 posts

Posted 26 July 2012 - 08:36 PM

While approving every single post is always an option, I'd say it makes forums like these impossible to run. Nobody wants to have to do it.

Spam has been a problem since we launched the forums back in 2002. It's not going away. I think it's fantastic that people like C1ay and CraigD take upon them to keep the site as clean as possible.

While approving EVERY post is not a viable option I fail to see how making newb's links and attachments subject to scrutiny could hurt the Mods or the site. When I first started here you had to have a specific number of posts BEFORE you could even post a link let alone add attachments (sadly I don't remember the specifics) and even then you had to earn more attachment space if you ran out of the very limited amount allowed. In any case it worked pretty damned well. I fail to see why re-implementing these old methods and adding the option that a newb's link or attachment need be approved by a mod or blocked would be such a big issue.


Something lalong the lines of: the newb makes their post count and gains link and attachment privileges but then must earn unsupervised privileges. Seems to me one of you geeks aught to be able to sort out some code that blocks links and attachments for a given post count, but posts the text immediately (as it seems to do now) minus links and attachments ( leaving some sort of "pending approval" message in place) and notifies the mods that the attachment or link needs approval. The mod checks it out votes yay or nay. Yay they click and it goes to it's post. Nay it get's flushed and the user gets a stern warning. With repeat offences the user gets flushed.

I really don't think spammers would consider it worth the effort to first make like a 25 post count and then another however many supervised posts just to get the opportunity to spam (ESPECIALLY if it were SPELLED OUT CLEARLY in the sign up page that all new members will have to follow this route). And with only poster's with less than the required post count affected I really don't think it would up the load on the mods...In fact I would think their work load would go down seeing as the chase should likely be nearly eliminated and by catching the spam before it hits the boards replying to complaints and threads like this would not eat up their time.

Will it reduce new members numbers yes, but then those that take issue with it are likely those that will spam. I'd also expect that long time members might actually come back to post and new members would appreciate the lack of garbage filling the threads enough to stay longer than a dozen posts or so.

#36 JMJones0424

JMJones0424

    412.63 ppm

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1241 posts

Posted 27 July 2012 - 12:32 AM

IIRC, the situation when I first signed up was that your first post had to be in introductions, and that you couldn't post links until after ten posts. I found it annoying when I first signed up, but since I understood the scope of the problem, and since it was so easy to include the url with text that the reader removes in order to get to the site (wwwdotgoogledotcom or the like), I did not find the old ways overly burdensome at all. Of course, I have no idea of what other measures were being done at that time as well that aren't now, or how the threat has changed in the last three years.

#37 Turtle

Turtle

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 15452 posts

Posted 27 July 2012 - 02:03 AM

IIRC, the situation when I first signed up was that your first post had to be in introductions, and that you couldn't post links until after ten posts. I found it annoying when I first signed up, but since I understood the scope of the problem, and since it was so easy to include the url with text that the reader removes in order to get to the site (wwwdotgoogledotcom or the like), I did not find the old ways overly burdensome at all. Of course, I have no idea of what other measures were being done at that time as well that aren't now, or how the threat has changed in the last three years.


in the past 3 years we've had 1 and maybe 2 MAJOR software changes and the current operating system may not have all the feaures we remember. craig has said elsewhere that he's got some coding ideas but alas he has a life, the boatrd is shorthanded, and we have hit some squall lines and then this storm.

i'm only hollerin' 'cause i see some rocks from up here in the crows nest that the helm can't. all-in-all i'm not ready to let our good ship run-up and sink or to abandon her for some lesser dinghy. captain has the wheel tied off so get on your slickers crew and get aloft & reef them sails for storm running. argh!! :pirate: :D
  • Tormod and CraigD like this

#38 Turtle

Turtle

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 15452 posts

Posted 29 July 2012 - 12:05 AM

...
i have recommended too many times to count that these accounts be deleted, and yet they remain. as long as the spammer profiles stay up, regardless of whether they are banned or put in the Spammers group, the spammers are getting paid and they win. (check the profile view counts on some of these spammers and see they are in the hundreds. they get paid for these views.) the spammers seem to understand doing things well; i don't think its asking too much that we do.


so i again...and again and again am going to say delete these accounts!! this criminal, http://scienceforums...-norfeeflyblep/, in spite of being in the spammer group continues to log in and change "its" birthday. "it" is logged in right now. "it" is of the infamous "143040" ilk and all contact info remains in the profile. "it" is getting paid on our back for this crap. 158 profile views and paying. delete, delete, delete!

i am dumfounded by the staff's reluctance to delete these accounts. while i'm here, how many times do i have to report the blog spam before it is deleted?

#39 Turtle

Turtle

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 15452 posts

Posted 29 July 2012 - 11:15 PM

delete, delete, delete. here's another of the 143040 gang (google the number to see what that's about) whose profile remains in spite of relegation to the spammer group. spam links still in profile. was logged in just minutes ago. still making money off us. still a criminal. http://scienceforums...54-zertmelikem/ the b-day is currently 7/12; i expect it will get updated & then the profile will appear yet again on our front page. good grief.

the spammer group also appears able to give rep, as 2 of them neg-repped the first post of my wildflowers thread. >> http://scienceforums...post__p__269923 aren't they clever? aren't we not.

i have been taking the url of spammers from the b-days list on our front page every day, the who's currently online list, and the newest member list and sending them periodically to the staff. my thought was to post them here but i'll hold for now on that because as long as they remain on our roles it would further their goal. however, in the last 40 days i have sent 900 + such links. 900!!! they are all still members, whether still active, in the spammer group, or banned. they are still laughing all the way to the bank. delete them!!! i heard the argument that "well, they just make new memberships" but they do that anyway. delete them delete them delete them!!! at the very least it might shut me up for awhile, eh? :soapbox:

ps just went to check who's online; guest viewing this profile >> http://scienceforums...5252-jazzper68/ spam in profile, spammer getting paid for yet another view. :naughty: adding to my list...

Edited by Turtle, 29 July 2012 - 11:18 PM.


#40 belovelife

belovelife

    psionicist - preserver lv.143

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1397 posts

Posted 30 July 2012 - 12:59 PM





everyone loves spam

#41 DFINITLYDISTRUBD

DFINITLYDISTRUBD

    tsilcycrotom live

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2291 posts

Posted 01 August 2012 - 10:36 AM

While i believe there is still much to be done on the spam front....Posted Image

A break from the ongoing negativity

Thanx to the Admins and Mods for your efforts, .Posted Image Hopefully they will pay off in the near near futurePosted Image

As well thanx to Posted Image for his typical stubborn turtliness and persistence in keeping the mods on the issue.Posted Image [a feisty ol' devil ain't he]
  • Tormod likes this

#42 Felasco

Felasco

    Curious

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 7 posts

Posted 01 August 2012 - 08:51 PM

While approving every single post is always an option, I'd say it makes forums like these impossible to run. Nobody wants to have to do it.


Making it works requires rethinking forums in a way few are willing to do. The price tag for this unwillingness is most forums are dominated by low quality chat style content, and of course, the never ending spam battle.

The spam battle is steadily destroying the entire forum experience. It pits forum owners and mods against their members.

As example, just this week I was banned from a forum specifically for trying to make a significant donation to the cause of that forum. I kid you not, this is literally true. The mod was so traumatized by spam that she'd entered a deep state of hysterical paranoia, and just couldn't believe my offer was sincere. She was SURE there must be some nefarious hidden agenda, and so she banned me. I've been banned from forums for posting non-controversial content that significantly exceeded the quality of the vast majority of posts. Again, literally exactly true, I kid you not.

The solution is to rethink forums. Fewer posts and members, but higher quality posts and members. If the standards are raised, there will be LESS work for the mods to do, and it will be more satisfying work.

Spam has been a problem since we launched the forums back in 2002. It's not going away.


It will go away on the day that forum owners want it to go away.

Simple recipe:

1) Use Facebook for the chatty quipy empty content exchanges that are so popular.

2) Use forums for intelligent, articulate, thoughtful conversations. If a post doesn't meet that standard, it doesn't get published. This will result in the end of all spam, and the end of low quality posters (ie. those that cause most of the problems), and a better experience for owners, mods and members willing to raise their game to meet the standard.

What's most likely going to happen instead is that we'll spend the next few years listing 35,873 reasons why this could never possibly work, until all the forum owners finally grow weary of the current experience, and close their forums, one by one by one. Most of the best posters have already fled forum land.

Edited by Felasco, 01 August 2012 - 08:54 PM.


#43 Tormod

Tormod

    Hypographer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 14353 posts

Posted 02 August 2012 - 05:23 AM

2) Use forums for intelligent, articulate, thoughtful conversations. If a post doesn't meet that standard, it doesn't get published. This will result in the end of all spam, and the end of low quality posters (ie. those that cause most of the problems), and a better experience for owners, mods and members willing to raise their game to meet the standard.


That has always been the purpose of this site.

But how will it reduce spam? Most spam we see are automatic, but we know that people register accounts in person, only to have them injected automatically later through scripts.

#44 Felasco

Felasco

    Curious

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 7 posts

Posted 02 August 2012 - 07:32 AM

Hi there, thanks for your reply.

That has always been the purpose of this site.


Please understand, I'm making a general point about all forums, not trying to tell you what you should do with your forum, which is clearly your business.

The vast majority of intellectual forums are VERY concerned about spam, somewhat concerned about personal conflict, but otherwise allow just about anybody to post just about anything. Lower quality posters are rewarded, while higher quality posters are discouraged by the low signal to noise ratio. The higher quality posters wander off one by one, and over time the lower quality posters dominate more and more. Eventually the admin and mods lose interest in managing such an audience, and they wander off as well.

In my view this is the inevitable result of the "almost anybody can join and say almost anything" publishing model that in use on the vast majority of forums, a slow but steady decline of the forum world. It's possible it's already too late to reverse the trend, rendering this post largely pointless.

But how will it reduce spam?


If the only way a post can be published is for a mod to approve it, nobody can spam. If the sign up form makes this policy completely clear, the spammers move on to some other target.

If the standards for the forum are raised at the same time, then the trend is set in motion in the opposite direction of what it is currently. Now the impatient and demanding lower quality posters are discouraged, and the higher quality more mature posters are rewarded with a higher signal to noise ratio.

Over time a forum of this nature should see fewer members and posts, but higher quality members and posts. Less work for the mods (both in number of posts and number of problems), and more interesting reading for both mods and members.

What's most likely to happen in my view is that folks will stick stubbornly with the current model until it's driven in to the ground, forums close one by one, and there's no where left online to have thoughtful in depth conversations with intelligent people over the age of 22.

I don't know what happens then. Perhaps Facebook installs a decent forum system, forum owners finally rethink their publishing model, or something else.

There's an inherent unresolvable conflict between "anybody can post anything" and "intelligent, articulate, thoughtful conversations". There's a place online for both, but trying to do both at the same time in the same place is never going to work for long, in my long winded opinion.
  • Tormod likes this

#45 belovelife

belovelife

    psionicist - preserver lv.143

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1397 posts

Posted 10 August 2012 - 05:00 PM

another wave, dang, i feel like i'm in a monty python video

#46 LaurieAG

LaurieAG

    Explaining

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1532 posts

Posted 25 August 2012 - 06:15 AM

They are back.

#47 CraigD

CraigD

    Creating

  • Administrators
  • 8034 posts

Posted 25 August 2012 - 10:17 AM

They are back.

A mere drizzle!

Sadly, the most effective tool for keeping it that way is geography, rather than the more selective, history database-based tool available to us. Most spammers access the internet from non-primarily-English-speaking countries such as Turkey, Pakistan, India, and China. Blocking memberships from regions within these countries with a history of spamming cuts the flood of spam to a trickle, but may block legitimate members. It's the internet equivalent of not letting someone into your restaurant because you know they come from a "bad" neighborhood.

#48 DFINITLYDISTRUBD

DFINITLYDISTRUBD

    tsilcycrotom live

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2291 posts

Posted 10 September 2012 - 11:13 PM

Yet another spammer in archetecture

In: Classic Porn Movies
By: artermaFumn
Today, 11:31 PM

#49 DFINITLYDISTRUBD

DFINITLYDISTRUBD

    tsilcycrotom live

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2291 posts

Posted 10 September 2012 - 11:21 PM

How the heck do they keep getting in?!?!?!?

#50 belovelife

belovelife

    psionicist - preserver lv.143

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1397 posts

Posted 12 September 2012 - 12:48 AM

i think my computer has a virus, interesting, it playes sound clips randomly from different source

pretty cool if it didn't effect my music listening to

i wonder if it is from a spam page with hidden code
don't know where i got it

i did download a program called 7 zip, and cannot remove it, mabe that is it

#51 belovelife

belovelife

    psionicist - preserver lv.143

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1397 posts

Posted 12 September 2012 - 01:00 AM

it came back right after i posted last time

and now it just stopped