Fighting Spam


Spam – I knew that it would happen sooner or later; I would just have rather spam happened later (or never).

There are two significant areas of spam that we have to fight.

  1. User Registration Spam (and spam groups)
  2. Comment Spam

The user registration spam is pretty much just a problem for Author Buzz itself. For some reason, spammers like to make new spammy groups. We see an average of two a day at the moment.

Comment spam, on the other hand, has mostly been a problem with Thanet Star. Thanet Star came to us with a large social media reach so it was to be expected that they would draw more spammers. Also, as they identify as commercial, they cannot use the non-commercial tools for spam filtering.

Fortunately, comment spam gets caught in the moderation queue almost exclusively and so is just a minor irritation that has to be removed every few days.

It’s the user registration spam that has been the problem. Apparently, it is a widely acknowledged problem for buddy press users and there are a lot of good ideas bouncing about on how to deal with it.

For now, our approach has been to remove the users that abuse our hospitality as we find them. I’ve made that task a lot easier by refusing access from known abusive email addresses. I imagine, though, that this will just cause the spammers to change email domains.

If you have any ideas feel free to share them. I’m going to keep chipping away at the problem until it is under control.

Back to the grindstone for me.

Not an ideal solution, because it can be quite intrusive (I’ve actually removed it from my blog), but have you considered implementing Captcha / Recaptcha on the signup page?


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