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Much Ado About Spamming

LEGEND ,
May 02, 2011

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Frankly, this business of reporting spam here and hoping an Admin will follow-up seems a bit silly.

I really feel for the Adobe Admins who must continually track the spam thread here and go actively delete posts based on the reports.

Here's an idea...

What if when someone reported a post as spam using the existing [Report Abuse] button it was immediately removed from display and put on a list for Admin review?

Then, even if no Admin ever followed-up, the spam would just be off the forum as quickly as possible.

The forum software could even track the number of reports and suspend an account automatically if a member hit a spam count threshold.

You would then essentially have the members who care about the quality of the forums ALL actively fighting spam at once.

About the only downside I can think of is that someone could report perfectly legitimate posts as spam, thus abusing the [Report Abuse] system.  The Admin could just ban such members (or simply remove their ability to squelch spam) based on a history (a few times?) of doing that.

Yes, I realize this involves engineering new functionality into the Jive forum software.  But that shouldn't be something to be avoided!

-Noel

Noel Carboni wrote:

What if when someone reported a post as spam using the existing [Report Abuse] button it was immediately removed from display and put on a list for Admin review?

The threshold for that currently is 4 reports. I do not know if that threshold is configurable.

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Much Ado About Spamming

LEGEND ,
May 02, 2011

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Frankly, this business of reporting spam here and hoping an Admin will follow-up seems a bit silly.

I really feel for the Adobe Admins who must continually track the spam thread here and go actively delete posts based on the reports.

Here's an idea...

What if when someone reported a post as spam using the existing [Report Abuse] button it was immediately removed from display and put on a list for Admin review?

Then, even if no Admin ever followed-up, the spam would just be off the forum as quickly as possible.

The forum software could even track the number of reports and suspend an account automatically if a member hit a spam count threshold.

You would then essentially have the members who care about the quality of the forums ALL actively fighting spam at once.

About the only downside I can think of is that someone could report perfectly legitimate posts as spam, thus abusing the [Report Abuse] system.  The Admin could just ban such members (or simply remove their ability to squelch spam) based on a history (a few times?) of doing that.

Yes, I realize this involves engineering new functionality into the Jive forum software.  But that shouldn't be something to be avoided!

-Noel

Noel Carboni wrote:

What if when someone reported a post as spam using the existing [Report Abuse] button it was immediately removed from display and put on a list for Admin review?

The threshold for that currently is 4 reports. I do not know if that threshold is configurable.

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May 02, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 02, 2011

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Noel Carboni wrote:

Yes, I realize this involves engineering new functionality into the Jive forum software.  But that shouldn't be something to be avoided!

-Noel

You DO realize that to do that, they would actually need to update to a more recent version of the forum software (something they seem unwilling or unable to do).

Seems that trying to get Jive to update this version would be like trying to get Adobe to update features Acrobat 4.

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May 02, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 02, 2011

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Really?

I believe I'm detecting changes in the way this forum software operates.  Someone's working on it.

-Noel

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May 02, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 02, 2011

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Noel Carboni wrote:


I believe I'm detecting changes in the way this forum software operates.  Someone's working on it.

-Noel

It was an acident. It should get back to the regularly scheduled bugs any time now.

I wasn't talking about fixing things that are broke but more of adding features that probably don't exist in this version of the software. Of course I admit that I don't know anything about the back end of the forums so I could just be blowing smoke.

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May 02, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 03, 2011

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~graffiti wrote:

I wasn't talking about fixing things that are broke but more of adding features that probably don't exist in this version of the software. Of course I admit that I don't know anything about the back end of the forums so I could just be blowing smoke.

Have we completely accepted, then, that we will forever be in a "no man's land" where we're stuck using old software and can never hope for new features?

I have no idea of the policies and politics that may be involved with why we are here, but settling for the worst of both worlds (old software that can't be changed and for some reason won't be updated to new software that can be changed) seems mighty silly indeed!

-Noel

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May 03, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 03, 2011

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Noel Carboni wrote:

Have we completely accepted, then, that we will forever be in a "no man's land" where we're stuck using old software and can never hope for new features?


-Noel

Since the decision isn't in our hands (no matter how much complaining we do), I have accepted the fact that someone else will be making that decision and there's nothing I can do to make them change anything they don't want to change.

I DO feel lucky to have a great bunch of moderators and of course John running this place to the best of their ability though.

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May 03, 2011 0
New Here ,
May 02, 2011

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~graffiti wrote:

Seems that trying to get Jive to update this version would be like trying to get Adobe to update features Acrobat 4.


Hey! Some of us would appreciate new features for Acrobat 4, you know!

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May 02, 2011 0
Mentor ,
May 02, 2011

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eBst version of Acrobat ever, ever was 5.01 with the included Form and eprint features.

The screwed it up in 5.5 and been down hill since.

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May 02, 2011 0
New Here ,
May 02, 2011

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PjonesCET wrote:

Bestversion of Acrobat ever, ever was 5.01 with the included Form and eprint features.

They screwed it up in 5.5 and been down hill since.


I didn't see 5.5, but I was massively unimpressed with 6.0 & it looks as though later versions continue to be cumbersome, bloated & buggy. (In all fairness, I have not spent a lot of time using the later versions & there are undoubtedly useful new tools, but our company's use of PDF's is pretty 'meat & potatoes', so the earlier version 4.05 continues to be used here for production work.)

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May 02, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 02, 2011

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Noel,

What if when someone reported a post as spam using the existing [Report Abuse] button it was immediately removed from display and put on a list for Admin review?

I would vote against anything that disrupts or blocks the flow of the threads; and we have seen too many posts/threads/natives disappear already.

Also, I believe the Report Abuse button is too close to the Reply button to prevent frequent post killings/suspensions by accident (mishit).

As I see it, the Spam Report thread works well enough; I have chosen that over the Abuse button.

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May 02, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 03, 2011

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Jacob Bugge wrote:

I would vote against anything that disrupts or blocks the flow of the threads; and we have seen too many posts/threads/natives disappear already.

Also, I believe the Report Abuse button is too close to the Reply button to prevent frequent post killings/suspensions by accident (mishit).

I question both of these statements.

What posts have disappeared that shouldn't have?

And have you ever actually used the [Report Abuse] button?  It requires additional input.

-Noel

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May 03, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 03, 2011

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Noel,

I have never used the Abuse Report button; I got the impression from others that the damage was done when the button was pressed.

It has has been very unpleasant to see many posts and threads, and natives, disappear for various reasons in the time after the fair forums. I, for one, should hate to see more of that under any circumstances whatsoever.

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May 03, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 03, 2011

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You imply that legitimate posts are just disappearing left and right.  I simply haven't observed that to be the case.  Maybe I'm not seeing the sub-forums you are.

When abuse is reported, I've seen mods remove posts - with good reason!  And of course they remove spam regularly.

And what do you mean by "natives" disappearing?  Regular posters leaving the forum?  You believe that has something to do with their posts disappearing?  If it did, chances are very good they were misbehaving and got zapped by a conscientious moderator.  Good riddance!

Next time you see some obvious spam, hit the [Report Abuse] button and see what it does.  What could possibly be the harm?

-Noel

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May 03, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 03, 2011

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Noel Carboni wrote:

Next time you see some obvious spam, hit the [Report Abuse] button and see what it does.  What could possibly be the harm?

-Noel

Now much in the Reader and Acrobat forums. I've always found I get faster results posting here. Plus when I used to use it all the time, they may have deleted the particular post but not all the rest of the posts by the same spammer even though I mentioned that the one being reported was one of many.

In fact, just used the report abuse button earlier today with no results yet.

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May 03, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 03, 2011

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Noel,

I am merely expressing a reluctance to having things disappear and then restored, which may fail, rather than living with spam a bit longer.

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May 03, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 03, 2011

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Fair enough.

I'll close with this:  I have, when I can beat the Admin to the punch, been looking over the posts of the people being reported for spamming in the other thread.  So far I've seen exactly one case where spam was reported that shouldn't have been.  It looks to have been an honest mistake.  By and large, the people reporting spam seem quite conscientious and VERY accurate.  With the idea in original post of this thread I was simply trying to close the time gap between the spam being noticed and the posts being removed, with a side benefit of freeing up the Admin some to maybe get a little more bugfixing done.

-Noel

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May 03, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 03, 2011

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Noel Carboni wrote:

...

Next time you see some obvious spam, hit the [Report Abuse] button and see what it does.  What could possibly be the harm?

-Noel

No harm; only that we have been asked by adobe-admin to report here giving the link to the offender's profile. This allows admin to remove at once all spam messages posted by the spammer, whereas reporting using the Report Abuse button only ensures the elimination of that particular message.

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May 03, 2011 0
Advocate ,
May 04, 2011

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Jacob Bugge wrote:

I would vote against anything that disrupts or blocks the flow of the threads; and we have seen too many posts/threads/natives disappear already.

We have?

Also, I believe the Report Abuse button is too close to the Reply button to prevent frequent post killings/suspensions by accident (mishit).

I would say that happens about once a day.

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May 04, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 04, 2011

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I would say that happens about once a day.

I am relieved to hear that it is so rare, Jochem.

Concerning disappearances, I believe you are aware of my preference of keeping alive, and live; an issue going back to the fair forums. As I said earlier,

a reluctance to having things disappear and then restored, which may fail, rather than living with spam a bit longer.

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May 04, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 02, 2011

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Another (non-Adobe) forum I frequent prevents the posting of links by newcomers, I think that at least for the 50 first messages. And I like the idea of limiting the number of posts to -say- 3 per day for the first 60 messages (I changed the number of posts because 50 is not divisible by 3 ).

In any case, I agree with what others have said. The software version used in these forums is ancient, and there are too many bugs that have been with us since this new "improved" version of the forums was implemented. Thertefore, I very much doubt Adobe will introduce any new features before both things have been corrected.

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May 02, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 02, 2011

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Claudio González wrote:

Another (non-Adobe) forum I frequent prevents the posting of links by newcomers, I think that at least for the 50 first messages.

This is the absolutely best way to deter spammers; if they can't post links, then there is no point of posting.

Claudio González wrote:

And I like the idea of limiting the number of posts to -say- 3 per day for the first 60 messages.

That is a less good idea; in the Flash Player forum we often have legitimate exchanges with newcomers of 10 or more messages per day.

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May 02, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 10, 2011

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Claudio González wrote:

And I like the idea of limiting the number of posts to -say- 3 per day for the first 60 messages.

That is a less good idea; in the Flash Player forum we often have legitimate exchanges with newcomers of 10 or more messages per day.

I agree completely. In several of the product forums, that I spend time in, many new posters DO post more than 10 times per day, into their threads, as requests for more info are offered, or as one tests various suggestions to fix an issue. While not an everyday occurance, it happens too frequently to have such a poster (usually fairly new to the product, and in trouble) blocked.

I like the idea above that, however, regarding links being allowed ONLY after X posts. In one product forum, the MOD is very good at spotting a new poster with a link to a commercial site, even if germane to the thread. He asks that the poster respond, and points out the need to keep spam out of the forums. When they "prove" their good intentions, he restores the link. An automatic limiter would go a long way, and save him a bunch of typing.

Just thinking here,

Hunt

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May 10, 2011 0
LEGEND ,
May 02, 2011

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Another possible (additional) approach to consider: http://www.stopforumspam.com/

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May 02, 2011 0
Most Valuable Participant ,
May 03, 2011

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Oh and the spammer is back in the Reader forum. He must have just taken Monday off.

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May 03, 2011 0