How to get rid of annoying bots

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Sun, 2017-11-05 21:21
spazlaz

I don't know who is involved with the site development, but I have a few ideas of some easy ways to get rid of the bots.

1. When an new account is made, it takes 1 month before links outside of certain approved domains can be posted. Essentially, imgur, deviantart, etc, would be allowed, but these "porn" links (that's what I assume they are) would not be allowed to be posted.

2. Any post with a bunch of Russian characters in it is immediately deleted (i believe those posts are pretty darn obvious).

3. Captcha's whenever a new account/post is made.

Are any of these possible?

Sun, 2017-11-05 22:14
Daij_Djan
Moderator Best Set of 2016
Daij_Djan's picture

Technically I'm a mod rather than an admin, but I should be able respond to your suggestions nethertheless A happy smile

Suggestion wrote:
3. Captcha's whenever a new account/post is made.

Account creation actually already uses Captcha - modern bots can get through this hurdle, though. That's why adding additional Captcha to individual posts would only be annoying (for the real users) rather than useful.

Suggestion wrote:
1. When an new account is made, it takes 1 month before links outside of certain approved domains can be posted. Essentially, imgur, deviantart, etc, would be allowed, but these "porn" links (that's what I assume they are) would not be allowed to be posted.

Sadly, that's not possible. We'd need some sort of blacklist for potential links (which by itself wouldn't be an easy task) or a whitelist (would be easier indeed) , yet the forum doesn't support neither (more on that below). There only is one similar restriction possible (and in use) which is linked to the used contact email adresses (but sadly has its limits).

Suggestion wrote:
2. Any post with a bunch of Russian characters in it is immediately deleted (i believe those posts are pretty darn obvious).

While I agree with your verdict, I don't think this oe works either. I might be wrong here, though..

I've kind of logged in a few minutes ago for the first time for real doing "my job" here for a week now (besides the CotW stuff) due to some health issues and just banned five bots which apparently really went havoc, so I kind of understand your concerns. We always had to deal with some bots, their amount has kind of increased after we had to remove one safety measure recently, though. The easiest way would be to fix the error and then again improve the account creation restrictions, but sadly the error doesn't seem to go away anytime soon (and we cannot solve it ourselves). There has been some talk in the team concerning moving the forum (for this and a few other reasons), but some RL-issues made this a rather slow process. So in the short time, I think we cannot solve this issue completely (only fight against it) - but the team is indeed working on a longterm solution (which hopefully will include some additional advantages Winking smiley )