Forum Spam: Apology and Fixes

An update on how we'll be improving the forum

21 to 40 of 369 messages
13/06/2012 at 13:24

I have no idea who that is

 

13/06/2012 at 13:29
sarah the bookworm wrote (see)

I have no idea who that is

 

We need to get you the 50 shades of grey triology my lovely.... just make sure that Cake is ready for some...um... exercise afterwards!

kittenkat    pirate
13/06/2012 at 13:30

13/06/2012 at 13:31

Um... ok

13/06/2012 at 13:31

Domi - at risk of going back to topic - when are the changes for spam going to take place?

Spam is still being created (look at the new discussions thread). I don't mind if you want a dancing monkey to moderate the forum - but I just want the spam issue solved.

13/06/2012 at 13:33

Aside from the obvious problems with user moderation, isn't that just providing more sticking plasters to put over a proverbial exponentially growing wound (or something)?  Surely the only solution to what happened over the weekend is to prevent the deluge of spambot-generated spam (virtually a page worth generating all in the same minute??) in the first place, rather than requiring anyone to clear it up afterwards.

13/06/2012 at 14:07

What he said is a far more eloquent way than I

The other problem with user mods is that the first question they should be asked is "Do you want to be a user mod?"  If they answer yes, they should not be given the role.  As the mods would need to willing, using that simple vetting process rules everyone out of the running.

13/06/2012 at 14:28

There's a Fetcheveryone ad on the site now.

 

Up there  

 

  *points*

 

Is this the way the wind's blowing...

Dark Vader    pirate
13/06/2012 at 14:31

Regardless of the political problems associated with user mods in a general sense, I think the benefits to be gained from a small group of user mods being able to remove what is obviously spam at evenings and weekends has got to be a good thing...   there aren't any downsides to it....  they don't need to mod the entire forum, just be trusted to remove the spam when it appears....

I really can't see any reasons why this should be a problem....

 

13/06/2012 at 14:31

I'll do it!

 

Payback time...

13/06/2012 at 14:40

DV - because it's a power to remove a post/thread regardless of it's content.  Other threads will be removed i an guarantee, with good intentions sure, but we all know where they can lead.

This isn't a community run site.  It's a commercial site so it is the responsibility of the owners, not the users, to police it.  This site is here to make money (if it doesn't isn't down to us either).  No users = no money.  It's simple housekeeping on the part of RW just as it's Odeon's job to make sure they have usable seats and a viewable screen, or Barclays job to ensure they have counter staff.

13/06/2012 at 14:41

Stick a 'report as spam' button on each post/thread, then if enough people click it within a certain timescale the system automatically puts the thread into invisible limbo until such time as an official Mod can look at it and either delete or reinstate.

The main issue with forum moderation by users is that it needs to be consistant, and it needs committed people who know and care about the forum and who are prepared to give it their time. They also need to be able to step back and be impartial when decisions need to be made, and that's a difficult task sometimes. And it needs Users to understand that a forum is not a democracy but a benevolent dictatorship. If you want to start flame wars or absue people go start your own forum and do it on your own Dollar.

Personally I think RW missed the boat a few years ago by seemingly writing bespoke forum software rather than incorporating commercial forum software into their website. Buying a commercial product potentially used by thousands of other sites means that you've got a manufacturer (and those thousands of users) constantly working on it to protect it and upgrade it, and even if you have to pay a licencing fee it's still going to be cheaper than having to employ your own people to reinvent the wheel. The forum really should be a pretty small spend in relation to the cost of the site in general.

kittenkat    pirate
13/06/2012 at 14:44
Dark Vader wrote (see)

Regardless of the political problems associated with user mods in a general sense, I think the benefits to be gained from a small group of user mods being able to remove what is obviously spam at evenings and weekends has got to be a good thing...   there aren't any downsides to it....  they don't need to mod the entire forum, just be trusted to remove the spam when it appears....

I really can't see any reasons why this should be a problem....

 

That's what was said on the other forums I mentioned earlier until it all went tits up.

13/06/2012 at 14:46

Come on tell us who the Mods are....or we'll start a witch hunt and wrongly accuse someone who isn't one......like Meldy...

13/06/2012 at 15:11

BOTF on both points.

kittenkat    pirate
13/06/2012 at 15:18

BOTF??

13/06/2012 at 15:32

Beware of The Fish

Also  

13/06/2012 at 15:49

Interesting debate

Personally, I wouldn't have thought it was that hard to give some user moderators clear guidelines on what they should or should not delete........ this shouldn't be anything they don't like the look of, but should be anything that is 100% spam (like we've had over the last week or so)....

I like BOTF's suggestions about using technology to pull a thread down if enough people report it, but have no idea if that is feasible given the architecture of the RW site.

Either way, something has to be done, and I really hope that the companies who advertise on here (and are paying Natmag-Rodale for access to runner's hearts, minds and wallets) are aware of the issues, and are exerting pressure on RW to sort it once and for all.....

13/06/2012 at 15:55

p.s. Dominique - Thank you for apologising, and for communicating the steps that are being taken to resolve this. You're right that these spam attacks are intensely frustrating, but it is good to hear that this is recognised, and that Natmag-Rodale do in fact care.

Now please deliver!.....

kittenkat    pirate
13/06/2012 at 15:56

Here's a suggestion. All new users have to be approved before their posts can show live. So therefore you could have a team of users, quite a few of them to instantly approve genuine accounts and not approve spam.

Those people have no direct access to moderating any other area of the forum and therefore have no access to other users accounts or posts.

 

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