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#1 Posted by comp_atkins (32174 posts) -

 

 Is there any serious work going on to prevent spam threads in the message boards?   I just took a quick look over on the OT board and around 25% of the messages on the first page are spam messages.  It's getting a little ridiculous at this point.   Is the approach to spam messages just a "delete as we find them" approach or are there measures in place to actively prevent them?

#2 Posted by JP_ (12876 posts) -

Hi Comp_Atkins

I am not sure what the Lead Moderators plans are but, What can really help is for all users to report the message to the Moderators with the Spam / Advertisements that is all we can really do.

Spammers spam cause they feel that Spamming is COOL.  They don't understand that it is just its not needed and its just useless

 

So just report the Post and the Moderators will take care of it

#3 Posted by michaelP4 (16680 posts) -
There's nothing more that can be done - report them and the mods will get to them.
#4 Posted by verbtex (8711 posts) -

Unfortunately, all that can be done is reporting the threads so that the mods can take care of it. I have noticed a recent increase in the amount of spam, so I agree with you in that sense that there is more to take care of.

#6 Posted by capaho (1253 posts) -

There's nothing more that can be done - report them and the mods will get to them.michaelP4

What about using modsecurity to do RBL filtering?

#7 Posted by MonsieurX (32045 posts) -
http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/2000013/rhythm-and-music-games-discussion-forum It's free post in dead forums
#8 Posted by comp_atkins (32174 posts) -
what about things like level requirements for thread creation / linking? it's not a cure-all but it seems it would provide some reduction in spam volume.
#9 Posted by JP_ (12876 posts) -
From my Years here at GS I have yet to see A reason for a Posting Limit sure On Forums like Ask a Gamespot Editor which Requires level 5 for Topic Creation sure they can Create threads there but then they get locked my a Moderator Also for the Noobies of Gamespot.com is why we have How to Gamespot (formally known as Welcome Noobies(If I aint Mistaken)) So There really cant be a Limit for Thread / Creating there
#10 Posted by c_rakestraw (14799 posts) -

What about using modsecurity to do RBL filtering?capaho

RBL what now?

#11 Posted by capaho (1253 posts) -

[QUOTE="capaho"]What about using modsecurity to do RBL filtering?c_rake

RBL what now?

RBL = Real-time Blackhole List.  They are maintained by organizations such as Spamhaus and Spam Cop to block access to mail servers and web servers from known sources of trouble.  The lists are dynamic, so when an IP address associated with spam becomes known it is added, when an IP address associated with spam gets cleaned up it gets removed from the list.  The Apache security module (modsecurity) can be configured to check the IP address of an incoming http request against a specified RBL list and deny access to the site from a known spam source.  

I have used modsecurity with the xbl.spamhaus.org list on my servers for years and it does cut down on forum spam.  The XBL is a list of compromised computers running exploits used for distributing spam and for attacking other computers, which is where most forum spam and injection attacks come from.  You wouldn't want to use the mail RBLs on a web server because they will block too much legitimate traffic.

#12 Posted by Byshop (13378 posts) -

Hi Comp_Atkins

I am not sure what the Lead Moderators plans are but, What can really help is for all users to report the message to the Moderators with the Spam / Advertisements that is all we can really do.

Spammers spam cause they feel that Spamming is COOL.  They don't understand that it is just its not needed and its just useless

 

So just report the Post and the Moderators will take care of it

Juniorpower

I mean no disrespect, but in my experience spam threads get purged anywhere between a few hours to 3-4 weeks after they get reported. Obviously if they take that long to get purged then they may as well have not even been moderated at all since by that time they have likely fallen off the front pages of their respective forums.

It seems to be dependent on how many people report the thread as spam. When people like what is being advertised (i.e. a cool looking mod or indy title) they tend to be less likely to report something as spam as opposed to when they have a strong dislike for what's being advertised (as in obvious scams).

Two possible fixes might be:

1) Do what some other boards do and block the creation of new threads by brand new accounts. Wait until people have gotten 25 or 50 replies under their belt before they can create their own new posts. A lot of people make accounts on here just to advertise their website, Youtube channel, game mod, kickstarter, indy project, etc. If you impose a sort of "seven day waiting period", that might be enough to dissuade the instant gratification crowd at least.

2) Create a new forum dedicated to advertisements (game ads, at least). Some of the stuff that people come here to shamelessly self promote is actually stuff we might be interested in hearing about. Regardless of how interesting the ad might be to me, I report them because who am I to pick and choose which ads are allowed and which aren't? It would be nice if there was just a place for this so people might be a tad slower to garbage up our normal discussion forums with their adverts.

-Byshop

#13 Posted by Byshop (13378 posts) -

Case in point: http://www.gamespot.com/forums/topic/29423354/liege---rpg-inspired-by-the-classics---kickstarter?msg_id=341073856#341073856

Obvious ad thread from an obvious ad account reported on 7-18 but it's still up. The Op just bumped it again.

-Byshop

#14 Posted by MonsieurX (32045 posts) -
I don't get how a big website as gamespot can't have anything to prevent those massive spam attacks
#15 Posted by Byshop (13378 posts) -

That Kickstarter spam thread is still going. At this rate the kickstarter campaign will be over by the time the thread gets deleted.

-Byshop

#16 Posted by EJ902 (14424 posts) -
[QUOTE="MonsieurX"]http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/2000013/rhythm-and-music-games-discussion-forum It's free post in dead forums

Oh my word. Good thing that was all the same account so I could delete it all in one go. There are no measures in place to stop spam bots like these and they really are a pain so just report them and we'll get to them eventually, hopefully when the site is redesigned it won't be as big an issue. I recall there used to be restrictions, users below level 3 could not post hyperlinks or images. It seems the feature that automatically hyperlinks any URLs posted does not obey this so the spambots are able to post hyperlinks, I suspect if they were not able to then the problem wouldn't be so bad. As best as I can work out, the reason why they post loads of hyperlinks on major websites like GS isn't to advertise to the users, it's to give the sites they're advertising more coverage on search engines by linking them to more popular sites. If they were only able to post plain text URLs rather than hyperlinks then they wouldn't get any benefit from posting here and it would be a pointless effort.
#17 Posted by PetJel (3724 posts) -

The comment sections on news articles are one huge spamfest. I have been reporting the most horrible comments but I havn't received a single 'action has been taken' inbox for over a week. Where are all the mods?

 

On some articles it's literally imposible to have any kind of conversation / discussion at ALL.

The same people spamming dozens upon DOZENS of trolly / insulting messages, people abusing the like system etc etc etc

#18 Posted by capaho (1253 posts) -

The comment sections on news articles are one huge spamfest. I have been reporting the most horrible comments but I havn't received a single 'action has been taken' inbox for over a week. Where are all the mods?

PetJel

All of the spam problems plus error messages like No PSpell link found opened leave me wondering where the system administrators are as well.  Add to that the bogus ad injections and I worry about the overall security of this website.

#19 Posted by Shadowchronicle (26054 posts) -

The comment sections on news articles are one huge spamfest. I have been reporting the most horrible comments but I havn't received a single 'action has been taken' inbox for over a week. Where are all the mods?

 

On some articles it's literally imposible to have any kind of conversation / discussion at ALL.

The same people spamming dozens upon DOZENS of trolly / insulting messages, people abusing the like system etc etc etc

PetJel
Sometimes afteer so many reports they stop notifying you with an action has been taken pm iirc. Happens to me all the time because I have reported so much over time.
#20 Posted by Smashbrossive50 (3536 posts) -
IT'S A NEW RECORD! 30+ spams from the dumbest spambot ever @ http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/909096003/sports-games-discussion
#21 Posted by Vari3ty (11111 posts) -

[QUOTE="Juniorpower"]

Hi Comp_Atkins

I am not sure what the Lead Moderators plans are but, What can really help is for all users to report the message to the Moderators with the Spam / Advertisements that is all we can really do.

Spammers spam cause they feel that Spamming is COOL.  They don't understand that it is just its not needed and its just useless

 

So just report the Post and the Moderators will take care of it

Byshop

1) Do what some other boards do and block the creation of new threads by brand new accounts. Wait until people have gotten 25 or 50 replies under their belt before they can create their own new posts. 

This is the best idea I've seen about this so far and I think it would be a good one. 

#22 Posted by Byshop (13378 posts) -

It might help -some-, but then the adbots would just start targeting existing threads. I've seen this happening on this board already.

-Byshop

#23 Posted by Smashbrossive50 (3536 posts) -
These pig asses never give up,I wish they are GONE by the time this newly enforced "Site Rebuild" has been completed
#24 Posted by capaho (1253 posts) -

These pig asses never give up,I wish they are GONE by the time this newly enforced "Site Rebuild" has been completedSmashbrossive50

Cybercriminals will never be gone.  It's up to the system adminstrators to deal with them effectively.  Hopefully the "site rebuild" will have much better protection against miscreants than the current build.

#25 Posted by JP_ (12876 posts) -

[QUOTE="Smashbrossive50"]These pig asses never give up,I wish they are GONE by the time this newly enforced "Site Rebuild" has been completedcapaho

Cybercriminals will never be gone.  It's up to the system adminstrators to deal with them effectively.  Hopefully the "site rebuild" will have much better protection against miscreants than the current build.

We just have to wait and see. If a "RBL" get instituted that will sorta help cause Im sure users will find a way to bypass it. then its up to the Moderators to handle the [color=red]SPAM[/color] and handle it we will
#26 Posted by capaho (1253 posts) -

We just have to wait and see. If a "RBL" get instituted that will sorta help cause Im sure users will find a way to bypass it. then its up to the Moderators to handle the [color=red]SPAM[/color] and handle it we willJuniorpower

I take it from that comment that you don't really understand what modsecurity and the xbl.spamhaus.org RBL are.  I've used them for many years on my servers and they really do cut down on forum spam.

#27 Posted by MonsieurX (32045 posts) -
This is getting ridiculous... the "mod will clear it up" isn't a good solution http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/2000013/rhythm-and-music-games-discussion-forum
#28 Posted by JP_ (12876 posts) -
[QUOTE="MonsieurX"]This is getting ridiculous... the "mod will clear it up" isn't a good solution http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/2000013/rhythm-and-music-games-discussion-forum

Thanks for letting us know of this MonsieurX I have requested one of the mMods to handle the spam :) ~ JP
#29 Posted by MonsieurX (32045 posts) -
[QUOTE="Juniorpower"][QUOTE="MonsieurX"]This is getting ridiculous... the "mod will clear it up" isn't a good solution http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/2000013/rhythm-and-music-games-discussion-forum

Thanks for letting us know of this MonsieurX I have requested one of the mMods to handle the spam :) ~ JP

Is there any plans for the Genre Forums? They feel like ghost towns with barely any posts and tons of spam
#30 Posted by JP_ (12876 posts) -
[QUOTE="MonsieurX"][QUOTE="Juniorpower"][QUOTE="MonsieurX"]This is getting ridiculous... the "mod will clear it up" isn't a good solution http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/2000013/rhythm-and-music-games-discussion-forum

Thanks for letting us know of this MonsieurX I have requested one of the mMods to handle the spam :) ~ JP

Is there any plans for the Genre Forums? They feel like ghost towns with barely any posts and tons of spam

I can't release any details of Project Triforce as I have been Sworn to Secrecy...Stupid NDA all I know is that we will be Watching for Spam more. All you can do is Please report the Spam and a Moderator Will enact on it Thanks for your Questions
#31 Posted by EJ902 (14424 posts) -
[QUOTE="MonsieurX"][QUOTE="Juniorpower"][QUOTE="MonsieurX"]This is getting ridiculous... the "mod will clear it up" isn't a good solution http://www.gamespot.com/forums/board/2000013/rhythm-and-music-games-discussion-forum

Thanks for letting us know of this MonsieurX I have requested one of the mMods to handle the spam :) ~ JP

Is there any plans for the Genre Forums? They feel like ghost towns with barely any posts and tons of spam

I cleaned up that board, you're right that some boards are just dead and the spam problem is worst there. Don't know what plans if any there are for boards like this after the site update.
#32 Posted by Byshop (13378 posts) -

Is there any ETA on when these changes might take place? The spam threads and other junk threads on this board are getting out of control.

-Byshop

#34 Posted by starwarsjunky (24759 posts) -
are there any actions being made with the site redesign to combat the spam? i try not to complain too much, but it really is ridiculous. at least disable hyperlinking and images for new accounts. and as someone else mentioned, a form of ip filtering could be used. i'm doing all i can do, which is report them when i see them, but it almost seems as if gamespot doesn't really want to do their part in fighting it...telling people to report spammers isn't going to make it all go away, unless something is done to ensure that spammer won't be returning.