A Suggestion

Hello! I am new here! And i am SICK of this so called "5 minute rule"
I also create projects in a website called "scratch"
in the scratch forums, you have to wait only 120 seconds! (2 minutes)
And even tough you have 100 posts, you still have to wait 60 seconds!
Can you please replace the 5 minute rule with the "120 seconds rule"?

Not any time soon so better get used to it.
It has a good function to prevent spam and allow moderators to nail those pesky blighters.
It goes away after 100 posts so keep plugging away.

I wonder if the Forum developers have tried a 2-minute rule to see if it actually provides less protection than the present 5 minute rule?

...R

I've noticed an increase in instances of multiple posts per spammer lately. I don't know whether this is a result of a change in tactics on the part of some of the spammers, or that the moderation response time has increased. Over the last couple months, I've been dedicating more of my time to documentation and continuous integration work than to the forum, so my response time has certainly increased.

The moderation response time on this forum is normally really quick. If we notice spam posts and ban the spammer in less than two minutes, then any longer time restriction would be unnecessary. However, even with the amazing dedication of our moderators, two minutes doesn't seem like much time to work with. I have my email client set up to check my email address for forum notifications every two minutes, so a spammer could get two posts in before I even have a chance of noticing the first.

If I remember correctly, there is still some minimum post interval limit even after 100 posts, but it's very short so you're only likely to hit it in very rare instances of legitimate forum use. 60 seconds would definitely be a problem in some cases (like when you're making a stock response to many topics on the same specific subject). I don't think we have any significant problems with spamming from 100+ post count members, so imposing a 60 second minimum post interval on them would have no benefits.

pert:
The moderation response time on this forum is normally really quick. If we notice spam posts and ban the spammer in less than two minutes, then any longer time restriction would be unnecessary. However, even with the amazing dedication of our moderators, two minutes doesn't seem like much time to work with. I have my email client set up to check my email address for forum notifications every two minutes, so a spammer could get two posts in before I even have a chance of noticing the first.

I had not realized that that is what the 5 minute interval is intended for. It seems to be a very unreasonable burden on the moderators as well as a PITA for newbies. I had assumed it was just to frustrate spammers.

I understand the need to restrict spam but the 5 minute restriction is a big barrier for the very customers that we want to encourage.

How do other Forums manage spam without needing a 5 minute restriction? There must be a better way.

...R

Robin2:
I had not realized that that is what the 5 minute interval is intended for.

Well, it's intended to prevent new users from making a ton of posts very quickly. Maybe they would do that for the sake of advertising, or maybe some immature idiot with too much time on their hands just polluting the forum with a bunch of meaningless, abusive, or off-topic posts. Either way, I'd classify it as "spam".

Robin2:
It seems to be a very unreasonable burden on the moderators

I don't see how it is a burden. It makes the moderator's job easier by reducing the number of posts we need to delete.

Robin2:
as well as a PITA for newbies.

It is unfortunate. I'm certainly open to trying other things. Perhaps there will be a different system in place when they do the switch to the new forum software.

I liked to think of it as "reflection time".

pert:
Well, it's intended to prevent new users from making a ton of posts very quickly. Maybe they would do that for the sake of advertising, or maybe some immature idiot with too much time on their hands just polluting the forum with a bunch of meaningless, abusive, or off-topic posts. Either way, I'd classify it as "spam".

I agree completely that such behaviour would be spam. However someone new who makes a Post, and then wants to correct an error in it or add more to it should not be penalised. Or what about a newbie who can provide useful answers to other questions - why should s/he have to wait 5 minutes?

I don't see how it is a burden. It makes the moderator's job easier by reducing the number of posts we need to delete.

That's a bit illogical. Your Reply #3 seems to say that the control of spam depends on the Moderators acting on each case (or 90% of them) within 5 minutes and that is what I consider a ridiculous burden. I (perhaps naively) imagined that the 5 minute delay would reduce spam sufficiently that Moderators would only need to attend to it a few times a day.

It is unfortunate. I'm certainly open to trying other things.

This brings me back to another regular theme of mine. It is the Arduino development team that should be trying to find a solution, not the Moderators.

I can't help feeling that this 5 minute delay was found to provide a solution and then everyone gave up on the idea of finding a better solution - or even tweaking the present solution to make is as un-onerous as possible.

...R

We have had this discussion lots of times and the end result is always the same.

BTW my mod time has also been interrupted by lots of outdoor work and my annual garage makeover.
That may increase once I break out the boat too.

EDIT.
Also cutting back on mod time due to the pesky forum issues which are driving me insane.

Robin2:
That's a bit illogical. Your Reply #3 seems to say that the control of spam depends on the Moderators acting on each case (or 90% of them) within 5 minutes and that is what I consider a ridiculous burden. I (perhaps naively) imagined that the 5 minute delay would reduce spam sufficiently that Moderators would only need to attend to it a few times a day.

There are two considerations:

  • How long a spam post lasts before it's deleted.
  • How many posts each spammer account makes before it is banned.

Personally, I think a spam post being up on the forum for even a second is too long. If nobody (most importantly not the search engine crawlers) sees the spam post, then the spammer lost. I very much want the spammers to lose. The post interval limit does nothing to help us with that. It's all about moderators monitoring the forum 24/7/365.

As for the number of posts each spammer makes, that is a bit less clear to me. Previously, it was pretty rare to see a spammer make multiple posts. There are multiple possible reasons for this:

  • It's the strategy they would use no matter what: create account, make spam post, move on to the next forum on the list. In this case, the limit doesn't have any effect on spam.
  • The post interval limit makes it not worth it to them to wait to create multiple posts. In this case, perhaps there is some duration where the equation would change. Or perhaps any limit at all will stop them, in which case 5 minutes is unncessarily long.
  • They never get the chance to make multiple posts because the moderators ban them so quickly. In this case, spam is reduced in a direct relationship to the minimum post interval, up to the point where the interval reaches the maximum moderation response time.

I don't really know how forum spamming works. I'd expect it's fairly automated, but the majority of spammers seem to be incredibly incompetent, so perhaps they aren't capable of automation. Certainly they are not a completely uniform group. There are definitely different strategies in use. Even if the majority of spammers are unaffected by the limit, there will be some percentage that will post as many times as they can with each account. There is some overhead to account creation. They must have a unique email address for each account.

I have seen other spam techniques, like copying an earlier reply in a topic, then later (sometimes many days) editing in the spam link.
And then there's pure SEO, where the person puts no link in their noise post ( "I like this" / "I also have this problem"), but relies on the URL in their profile.

I'd like a mechanism to prevent profiles containing URLs until the member has their 100 posts.

(As a moderator, I would occasionally hang around the newly registered members section, and cull any accounts with suspicious URLs (casino / betting / ladies of negotiable affection), even if they hadn't posted anything)

TheMemberFormerlyKnownAsAWOL:
I'd like a mechanism to prevent profiles containing URLs until the member has their 100 posts.

And I still cannot get a link of any description to hold for more than a day or so (seems pretty random) and I am sure I hit the 100 mark a while ago.

:grin:

It is mostly pretty moot anyway or at least will be to some extent if they bring in new software.

Better spam filters ?
Email authentication ?

Current system for the most part works (excluding the usual bugs)
Last thing we need is for them to make a change as they usually follow with a slew of issues.

ballscrewbob:
Last thing we need is for them to make a change as they usually follow with a slew of issues.

Unfortunately I also agree with that.

Poor management. Poor setting of priorities. Perhaps poor knowledge of SPAM prevention systems. == In water too deep.

...R