Some spam on the site

You may have noticed a spam account going round and commenting on the activity stream, this account has been removed and the comments are being cleaned up. Spam is inevitable on any website that has any kind of forms and is popular, but this website has done pretty well over the last year and spam has been pretty minimal. There are 2 main kinds of ways that we are hit with spam, these are 1) spam bots – automated programmes sent out to attack sites like this2) real people – people being paid a minimal amount of money to sit in a room and sign up to websites and manually add spam (you have to feel a bit sorry for them, right?) I have put in various measures to stop the first kind, this includes blocking known spammers from the site entirely (which also cuts down on bad traffic) and humanity checks at sign up and this has kept us pretty spam free up until now 🙂 The other kind is a lot harder to stop, all the measures put in place to stop bots don’t stop real people, especially if they mask their IP address or proxy in through another. So instead we have other measures in place to prevent you seeing much of them, this includes restricting who can send private messages to each other and restricting group requests. What was good to see on this occasion (for me anyway) is that the time stamps on messages today where far enough apart to show that it was done manually and not a bot. Until now I have refrained from putting more barriers in place, after all more barriers to real people means more barriers to the real members – I will review this, but I’m reluctant to stop the conversations. So what do you need to do if you see these people?Help me out and let me know – there is just one of me and I’m not always online (even if some people thing I am!) you can head over to the spam form to let me know Please let me know if you have any questionsEmily”


  1. Just to reassure everyone, this spam account had no admin access and no ability to access information about anyone that is not already publicly available on the website.

  2. impossible to stop all the spammers all the time. what’s the hit rate anyway? surely you’re not getting more than a few every month? there doesn’t seem to be much evidence of them on the site.

  3. @kuxi in just over a year I’ve had about 3 or 4 that have made it through to post on the site and go public.

  4. Thanks for the update Emily, I agree it’s really difficult to stop the second type of spammer as they are actual people and behave as such (apart from the unwarrented spamming). Like you say the best way we can help with the ‘mark as inappropriate’ button. I think once any community reaches the numbers you have it’s likely that it will attract people paid to get advertising onto websites. Although once they are stopped a few times I rekon they will turn away as it’s not worth their while.

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