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Discussion in 'Community Announcements' started by Kevin Muldoon, Nov 23, 2015.
I like that idea, Rhys.
I do too.
Any other perks for reaching this milestone?
Signature, access to a private discussion room, and ?
I'm just thinking here, but one thought is that they could have permission to post in certain forums.
I also had the thought that it would be great to have a home page or Read This First or Guide to Being Here or Rise Forums Welcome Pack or How to Get the Most Out of Being Here or some combination or variation. Like, I think it might be helpful to give people some ideas about what kinds of things they can post, suggestions for helping others and how to do that effectively, suggestions for how to ask for help, reminders to be nice and give before they ask for help, and also mention things like be yourself, don't try to pretend you're something or someone you're not, if English isn't your first language don't name yourself a misspelled English name... (but I digress)
Anyway... some guidelines that set the tone in your nice, friendly voice but with specific suggestions for how to actually interact in a positive, pleasant way on a forum. And that way maybe some people who really can't handle that will stay away, and some who would benefit from that specific guidance would maybe take it to heart and do it.
I know you have the rules, but apparently some people need more guidance for how to interact on a forum. Also it might be nice to put out there somewhere *who* Rise Forums is for. I know you're very inclusive and that's wonderful, but there really is an ideal RF member, and it might be nice to articulate that somewhere so that those people will say, hey! that's me! and come join us.
It is a good suggestion. I do think I need to expand the rules and guidelines section.
My concern is that if the rules page is too long, people will not read it. My other concern is that the people who do need to read the rules page are the ones who would not read them. In other words, good members know instinctively how to be a good member. They don't have to be told not to spam the forum.
But I do like the idea of explaining who Rise Forums is for so that there is no misunderstanding.
You're right... The people who need it probably wouldn't read it or wouldn't actually do it, and those who would do it don't need those guidelines. And your About page really spells it out well. That has always been there, or did you just add it or update it? I like it. Maybe if that could be part of what you see when you register your account, that would be good. And maybe it already is.
We continue to receive spam on Rise Forums on a regular basis.
Recently I have seen an increase in what can only be described as ineffective sneakiness. These people will respond to lots of threads and in each thread they will mention a product to use; however at no point do they admit that they own the product or have any connection to it.
For example, today a guy called Richard Buss signed up to Rise Forums and replied to a couple of discussions about how people should try YNOT mail. If it was not obvious already that he is trying to push his own product, a quick search on Google highlighted the fact it is his product. It also highlights he has been spamming other forums, though you will find it hard to view those threads as the discussions have been marked as spam and deleted.
I am puzzled as to why people do this.
If a developer or advertiser came into this community and said "Here is my product/service, why don't you check it out", then we would probably check it out. Turning up and spamming random threads just isn't the way to go.
We are still seeing people who are disguising who they are and trying to put themselves over as experts. The IP addresses of 95% of these people are from India, yet they use Western sounding names and upload a fake picture of a generic white guy or white girl. They then proceed to copy and paste absolute drivel into a thread and hope it makes them sound like an expert.
I am unsure as to what their end goal is with all of this. Why don't they just tell us who they are and what they need help with? Do they seriously think they can benefit from doing this?
From our point of view (that is, the moderators point of view), it is usually quite apparent they are not who they say they are. There are times when we try and give people the benefit of doubt.
Moving forward, I think we need to be a bit more strict about all of this. If people are signing up here simply to try and spam the forum, they will be instantly banned. Likewise, if people are signing up from one part of the world and saying they are from the USA or UK when they are not, their posts will be marked as spam and they will be banned from the forum.
We really need to adopt a zero tolerance policy with this kind of thing as the integrity of this forum is what makes it valuable to members.
I know... good grief. It's so annoying.
And it's not just the moderators that are aware of it. I think everyone here is aware of it, if you are a real person who is a somewhat active member who is here for connection and not just self-serving self-promotion.
I'm sure it turns some visitors off when they see that kind of stuff.
I wonder if making the forums hidden would cut back on some of it. At least people wouldn't have the idea that the entire internet could possibly see their posts.
When I was member of a curly hair site years ago, the owners assigned frequent & trusted members to be moderators. That way up to a dozen people had partial admin control to ban suspects. However I think that could be an option if it gets to be too much for 1 person to handle.
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Hiding the forums isn't exactly a good idea as it is how we also attract good members.
Anti-spam measures, such as captcha forms, can help prevent brute force style spam attacks. But the problems mentioned above are generally coming from real people who have signed up manually and created posts and threads.
Other measures, such as not being able to post links at the beginning, are in place simply to discourage people from posting spam. It can annoy good members, but is a necessary evil to stop people from posting a lot of crap here.
We do have some moderators on hand here Joy to help handle everything. I wouldn't say the issue is out of hand as yet, but it is something I am always keeping tabs on.
Okay, I guess I'll stop mentioning that (hiding the forums, lol).
Do you have a way of knowing how the real real people find the forums? I'm just curious where they're coming from. It does seem like there's been an influx of more real people lately. Thank goodness. (Or am I wrong about that? Maybe it's just my impression?)
I'd like to think the spammers are simply looking to build their online presence. If their posts get marked as spam, no harm to their name. Those that don't will generally help - someone doing a search for their name will see (what the spammers think) proof of their expertise and they are in fact from a western nation. Do a search for my username on Google - you'll see I played quite a bit of poker before the government shut it down in 2011,and there's a record of the advice I've given out.
I say we turn it around on them. Set up a hall of shame, specifically for users who lie about their identity. Google indexes their name, and people see user "TotallyAmerican" claimed to be from Texas, but is actually from Indonesia.
Another (simpler) way to go would be to post the country of origin (determined by ip) under each user along with their join date and post count. Yes, there are ways around this - VPNs for one - but something tells me these users won't bother using one until it's too late.
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Yeah I can check Google Analytics and check the search queries that people used to get here.
We used to be completely hidden and people used to pay to use this forum. There are benefits to having a community like that. For one, you don't have to even deal with spammers. However, the forum was too inactive and without people contributing, a forum is nothing.
You may have also noticed that there are no advertisements on the forum at all. At some point in the future I will introduce advertising, but at the moment I am happy for the forum to focus solely on growth. The focus is to bring in more good members (the emphasis on good).
I still hate the American government for what they did to poker!!! Suppose some blame has to be placed at the scumbags that were running the poker companies too. The way that companies like FullTiltPoker and Pokerstars were run were ridiculous. I'm not sure why more people associated with FullTilt were not locked up for a very long time.
I don't want to share information about spammers etc unless they really damage the community in some way (i.e. hackers). Plus it would be time consuming to try and fight them in this way. Sometimes it's easier to just mark them as spam and move on.
I found this to archive threats: https://xenforo.com/community/resources/advanced-thread-archiver.3601/
For country: https://xenforo.com/community/resources/country-flags-by-ip-address.3080/
Hope it helps, sorry for dropping the links in a blast, I am currently doing the migration of my site and decided to drop in and hopefully, be of some help.
Many thanks Alex.
The country by flags add-on looks interesting.
How does everyone think about this feature? Would you welcome the addition of a small flag that showed the location you were logging in from? I think it would tackle the issue of people disguising who they are; but I want to make sure regular members would not have a problem with this.
That archive add-on looks great too. I just need to set the parameters that dictate when threads are moved e.g. one month without a response.
My only concern is that the add-on only allows threads to be archived to one specific room. This means that all of the threads in that room would not be categorised. Ideally, every single discussion room could have its own unique archive.
+1 for the flags.
+1 for archives as long as they are still searchable. With time constraints I use search a lot and still nice to see and read old threads, even if not responding/commenting.
The need for archives derives from new members who start searching through old threads after registering and posting on them. The hope would be if those older threads were in an archive room, they would not go through and do that; but they still could. I agree with you 100% that these older threads still need to be easily found as they contain a lot of useful information.
Why don't you go simpler and just close the old treats? This would avoid them to reply to "dead issues". Regarding the "experts", I think you should sit down a bit and see from the members who or not, do you approve as the "legit" thing regarding "expertises" and add a badge to such members to differentiate them apart. Or you can seek hacks for the forum, I can even give you a hand if you need anything regarding to coding as I owe you one.
That's a good point Alex.
Closing threads that are older than, say, four to eight weeks, means that they will be listed in the main rooms so the content can still be found easily. Anyone who has a question about the same issue can then open a new thread and, if necessary, the old thread can be reopened if needs be.
It seems so obvious I don't know why I didn't think of it haha.
Make it 60 days old, because some people register in one month ahead and might come here because one of the topics could be found through Google and they want to clear a few things, I think it would be best, also, helps to get movement on such topics. Whence closed, pushes others to the top so you keep having rotation.
I implemented the archive add-on and set it to 60 days. Working on the country flag add-on just now too