Author Topic: Necessity of new user mod approval (and is anyone handling this currently)  (Read 1833 times)

Offline JavaJones

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Hello mods, just getting a fuller picture of how everything works/worked at Crows Town and I was reminded that new user registrations have to be mod-approved.

So first question, is anyone still handling these? There appears to be a backlog and I'd like to clean it out. Also is there any basis upon which the decision is based besides A: do they look like an obvious spam bot and B: are they a duplicate registration? And in the latter case, isn't there a system that handles detection of that anyway?

Which leads to my next question: do we really need to do it this way? As the new overload of Crows Town (;) :rolleyes:) it's my inclination to do away with this approach. It uses up moderator time, which I think we all have less of than we'd like these days, and it discourages new membership. Granted it can be a barrier to prevent people from gaming the system, but I think there are other ways to deal with that, and I'd rather see a more thriving community than a more "exclusive" one.

Of course there may well be reasons for this approach that I'm not aware of. I'm new to all this, especially the admin side of this particular site. So I greatly appreciate any history and explanation of the reasoning for this and other things we'll discuss in the future. But I'm also keen on reevaluating old practices to see if they're still the best approach, and I hope you'll all join me in taking an objective look at the site and making judicious changes to improve it as we go along.

P.S. I figure if there is some support for the idea here, even if not unanimous, we should open it for wider discussion among the site members.

Best,

Oshyan

Offline Nicolas

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As far as I know, this anti-spam wall was implemented last year because lots of different adbots started signing up and posting, and I even remember a very nasty one that posted full nudity and hard core porn on a thread.

I don't really know much, but would it be possible to keep some of the filters on while leaving the registration automatic?

Offline JavaJones

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I'm not certain yet, but normally yes you can control filters separately. The manual registration approval is just an extra layer of protection.

- Oshyan

Offline Javi

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The reason we went to moderation is due to the fact that some spammers were opening accounts and waiting a few weeks to spam the site. While in moderation, we were able to search their ip and email address at Stop Forum Spam to ban them before they got into the site.

You are correct that the duplicate checker does catch some, but not all spammers. It also has given some false positives. I would help moderate the pending queue, but I don't have access to that section.  I get this message:

Quote
Sorry, you don't have permission to access the administrative controls on this page.

If you need to access this page, ask your lead administrator to enable your permissions for this page using the Administrator Permissions section of the control panel.


Nicolas seeing your're in this section, I am assuming that you are a new mod. Welcome to the team.
Javier
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Offline JavaJones

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Correct, Nicolas is a new mod. Wasn't sure how any active ones we still had. :)

I'll see if I can give you permissions to that section...

- Oshyan

Offline Nicolas

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Thanks, Javi.

Oshyan, I'm having trouble with the members link in the quick moderation panel.



It asks me to login, and when I do, it takes me to the 'thanks for logging in' page, but then redirects me once more to the login page.

Offline Javi

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Nicolas, the only people who can get into the member moderation page are admins. I had that same problem before Simon promoted me.

It looks like I can get into the moderation page now. Thanks Oshyan!! :) I can take care of the moderation of the new members. I check the boards daily and know how to quickly scan the list.

Nicolas, if you need any help learning vBulletin, don't be afraid to ask. I know there are now a lot of options available to you now, but it is pretty easy to catch on.
Javier
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Offline Nicolas

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thanks javi, everything seems to be fairly easy, I asked about the members thing because I don't know what to do in case we get a spambot:

I've figured out how to delete messages, but I guess I can't ban them?

Offline Javi

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Nicolas, you can ban the spammers if they get onto the site. That is the fun part ;). You will get a message if someone reports a post.  Just permanently delete the spammers posts. Get their Username, go into the moderation panel. under Users, click Ban User, enter in their username, change Lift Ban After.. to Permanent, and add spammer to the reason.

You also have the option to move/redirect/merge posts, that option is at the top under Thread Tools

These two actions were the things I did while I helped moderating. Luckily the board pretty much runs itself and we don't have to do much.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2010, 04:41:11 AM by Javi »
Javier
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Offline Nicolas

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This may sound stupid, but I can't seem to find the modCP:confused:

EDIT: nevermind, already found it.

Offline kevtic

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hey guys.  I became a mod more by accident than by design after asking simon to give me mod status so i could transfer stuff to the other site more easily.  i'll understand if you want to demote me back to prole status.
 
My experience on the Celtic forum i mod on is spam bots were becoming increasingly a pain in the ass and we opted for manual approval as it gave us more control.  What we also did was ban any free email addresses such as hotmail, yahoo etc.  This cut down on the spammers and the lunatics.  being a football forum we get far more of these kind of people than you do here especially the rival fans who attempt to try and wind us up with their amazing wit and repartee.
 
i guess it is down to how much hassle it is to screen new members.  How many try to sign up a week?  We currently have 7,000 members registered on our board but i'm guessing we have about 10-20 requests a day to register although not all are legitimate or will make it.
 
I can't see a mod CP on here and I guess you have to have admin status to access the main CP which controls the whole board and the registrations.  As long as you don't leave people waiting for registration for too long I'd still do it manually as saves hassle in the long run.

Offline Nicolas

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Kev, I think banning hotmail or yahoo is a really bad move to make, at least here. For example, almost everyone here in my country uses hotmail or gmail, and I suppose it's also like that in many other countries.

Offline kevtic

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Quote from: Nicolas;38398
Kev, I think banning hotmail or yahoo is a really bad move to make, at least here. For example, almost everyone here in my country uses hotmail or gmail, and I suppose it's also like that in many other countries.

It was just a suggestion but it probably doesn't apply as much to a forum like this but we found a lot of the people who just came on to cause trouble were using free addresses as it gave them some anonimity.  Unlikely to be a problem here unless we ahve a big fight with the pearl jam community or something :)

Offline Javi

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Hi Kev,

I have been screening members for awhile now and many use the free email services. I personally use gmail. A better test of spammers has been their ip address. I use a website, Stop Forum Spam, to lookup to see if they are spammers. It has been pretty reliable on catching them.

The highest I have seen new registrations has been 5 per day. Currently, very few people have been registering. Since we have been back, only 8 people have registered.
I check the queue now everyday so people don't have to wait long to get access to the site. It's not much of a hassle for me.
Javier
Crows Town Moderator

Offline Nicolas

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CC needs to release a new cd ASAP :D

 

anything