Seriously, what is with DRI’s incredibly ineffective approach towards spam? We’re still having user accounts banned constantly (ricardo had to go through this rigamarole again this past week), and yet blatantly obvious spam still comes through fine. There have been at least a dozen spammers who’ve blasted the forums with their crap in the last week alone, and most of the time their accounts aren’t banned.
Based on the spam coming in, this is not hard to filter! Brand new user joins and posts several messages in a day, each with at least one link and substantially similar words? Spam. User with hundreds of posts and known good history? Not spam.
This is not hard. I don’t know what you’re paying for Akismet, but you’re getting ripped off. EDIT: Looks like you’re paying at most $50/month for something intended to filter spam from personal blogs. That’s less per year than one Drobo.
May be DRI is not that interested in maintaining a forum which mostly list (often recurrent) problems and is not a marketing tool…
Would be curious to know if their market share increases or falls down…
Not sure the switch of emphasis from prosumer to professional market was such a great successful strategy, despite the better unitary margins…
To be fair, they are getting rid of the spam posts as they’re flagged.
Problem seems to be that it’s a very manual and quirky process that seems to auto-ban those who shouldn’t, and misses banning many that should.
Also they seem understaffed to maintain the level of spammage.
The corporate worker in me feels like whoever initially set up and maintained the forum is long gone and now random other employees are being tasked with it and learning as they go.
They need more moderators, preferably some in other countries so spam and spammers can be handled throughout the day.
Probably the easiest and most effective thing they could do is stop auto-banning accounts (or at least only auto-ban new accounts), and when any account has more than a certain number of people report its posts, all of that account’s posts get hidden until it can be reviewed by a moderator. That would quickly get the spam off the forums and put an end to some of the most egregious auto-bans.
Half of this forum is now un-removed spam. The “Off Topic” forum, although never used, is near-100% spam. Spam comments are left in place even after accounts are banned. And they still keep banning the top users who post (ricardo has been banned how many times?).
Seriously, have a damned intern spend 20 minutes a day cleaning this up! Across the dozens of forums I visit, this is the only one that has any spam. Community-run anime fan groups don’t have spam, but a multi-million-dollar corporation can’t manage a single forum. That is beyond pathetic.
(Now watch folks, as this post gets removed because I used harsh words about DRI, yet hundreds of blatant spam posts remain. Just watch.)
I learned my lesson though. I tunnel over SSH from the uni network to my home connection and then I can post without getting instabanned. The irony is that I SSH into the FS at home to bypass DRI’s spam detection.
Also, do not use the “[url]” tag. That one also instabanned me.
Back to the topic: it is kinda sad that the spam is taking over the forum. I can’t believe that the forum software they are using has no way to configure even the simplest spam protection mechanisms.
No, they just haven’t updated their site properly (again). The serial number requirement was removed almost a year ago - which is good, as otherwise prospective purchasers couldn’t see any of the potential issues. Unfortunately they’ve been utterly incompetent at managing the forums.
Okay, unbanning me is good. Banning the remaining spammers is good. Next steps - clean out the posts from those banned accounts, implement effective anti-spam (low false negatives, near-zero false positives), implement a faster and more effective response to banning/deleting spam posts, and implement an efficient means of reinstating accidentally banned accounts.
We’ve been over several proposals, including:
[list]Honeypot forum to trap unwitting spammers - lock account of any user that posts
Immunity from locking for longtime posters with high post counts
After a certain number of community-reported posts, lock the user account
When a user is locked, hide the posts pending review by Drobo Inc (if the forum software allows it, show where a hidden post was and allow others to manually expand it)
[*]When a user is reviewed by Drobo Inc and determined a spammer, ban the user and delete all associated posts[/list]
These suggestions would keep people like Ricardo and I from being banned, and would allow the community to perform a certain amount of self-policing (lock/hide based on community reports of bad behavior), and hopefully reduce the load on Drobo Inc (spam review might be a matter of simply reviewing a locked account list and either banning or unlocking).
No problem, Sky. On the call this morning I tried to emphasize that you’re one of the bright spots of customer service these last few months (and if I didn’t get that message across, please show this to folks!).
Apologies are cool and all, but the proof is in the pudding. Ball’s in Drobo Inc’s court.