Crowding in on our turf April 15, 2005 4:02 PM   Subscribe

MeFi drug wars?
posted by peacay to Bugs at 4:02 PM (13 comments total)

Just spam. I reverted it to the last non-spammed version; the spammers will surely be back.
posted by Zonker at 4:07 PM on April 15, 2005

Go go go Richard P!
posted by cali at 4:08 PM on April 15, 2005

Spammers. Happens all the time.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 4:11 PM on April 15, 2005

I figured.....I went to change it and in 'preferences' it didn't allow user ID to be changed. I've only got a vague-ish handle on wiki....does this one really need universal editing ability? not that I don't like fully open etc niceties.
posted by peacay at 4:23 PM on April 15, 2005

I have seen too many Wikis killed by spam. This sucks.
posted by caddis at 5:54 PM on April 15, 2005

Damn spammers are trying to ruin everything good about the internet, aren't they?
posted by gyc at 6:47 PM on April 15, 2005

I run a wiki that gets drug spams about once every other month. But we notice right away and they rarely stay up for more than 12 hours. Freedom never comes easy :-)
posted by furtive at 8:27 PM on April 15, 2005

Hack in one of those wavy alphanumeric graphical checks. "If you're a real person and not a mother-raping spammer type in the contents of the image below". It adds a little tedium to the edit process but for the amount of editing that goes on at the wiki it shouldn't be a problem.

Now if I somebody could only figure out how to detect spammers that way and make bongs out of their heads.
posted by substrate at 5:25 AM on April 16, 2005

some people sure are desperate, aren't they?
posted by pyramid termite at 6:38 AM on April 16, 2005

I just removed some spam. Rather than whine about it to Metatalk, as has happened a few times in the past, why don't people just perform the reversion themselves? Isn't that the point of a Wiki?
posted by majick at 1:20 AM on April 17, 2005

majick...I kind of tried to change I wrote above. We are not all technophiles. And simply because things have been mentioned before, doesn't mean that we've all seen them. Shit man...I really know diddly about wiki...seriously (well a bit more now). such circumstances...
Isn't that the point of MeTa?
posted by peacay at 2:54 AM on April 17, 2005

Those alphanumeric graphic checks aren't paritcularly effective anyway.

Once hotmail implemented them the spammers figured out how to get around them cheap. They setup free porn sites... to get your porn you just had to prove you were human... and amazingly their human tests were exactly the same as hotmail's.

24/7/365 porn-paid CAPTCHA breaking.
posted by mosch at 2:55 AM on April 17, 2005

It's a four click process to revert a document. No technical knowledge is required. In fact, typing isn't even required.

How to revert a document on a wiki:

1. At the bottom of the spammed page, click the "View other revisions" link
2. On the list of revisions, click the link for the version just prior to the spammer's.
3. At the bottom of the nice clean nonspammed version of the page that is presented to you, click "Edit text of this page"
4. On the edit page, click the "Save" button. This will save the clean version of the page over the spammed version. Optionally describe in the "Summary" field what you did.

If you'd like to practice this technique before you apply it to a real page, try it on the SandBox page, which is designated for learning and experimentation.

Unfortunately, this just removes the spam from the user-visible current version of the page. The previous spammy versions of the page are not deleted, and can still be accessed; the spammer is still getting what he wants: an invisible link farm that Googlebot and other indexing spiders will see. Reverting, alas, does little to discourage the spammers. It does, however, keep a Wiki usable for humans and takes very little effort.

mosch: I heard about the "million porn monkeys" method of defeating CAPTCHA at the time it was being popularized, just prior to Hotmail's CAPTCHA deployment. I have never seen or heard about it being implemented. Did some enterprising spammer really take the ball with the obvious and well-popularized loophole and run with it?
posted by majick at 7:26 AM on April 17, 2005

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