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This Has To Stop...

The football streamers have now effectively jammed the entire site.

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  1. There MUST be a mechanism to recognize multiple threads by the same name and delete them without human assistance. The spammers are putting the viability of the site at risk. Think survival mode, CH.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Veggo

      and this is the only board I frequent that experiences this issue...there are always a few spammy posts that make it through, but none of my other boards get completely mired in it like this one.

    2. I wonder if there are moderators in each time zone, or if they're only on the west coast.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Gio

        There are moderators in many time zones, almost all volunteers. Believe us, we are working as hard and fast as we can to clean up this crap, until someone figures out a technical solution.

        In the meantime, please continue to report them. It's only necessary to report one post from any one user name. If we see that report we will deal with any other posts by that user.

        1. re: The Chowhound Team

          It's a hard row you have to hoe. Many thanks...!

      2. "Jammed the entire site" in what way? I haven't noticed any loss of functionality.

        21 Replies
        1. re: carolinadawg

          As you can see, the invasion resumed 2 minutes after your post.

            1. re: Veggo

              I've only seen one today, just reported it. I saw and reported a couple the other day. That's it.

              1. re: mcf

                But for the caprice of timing, you have not suffered the worst of it.

            2. re: carolinadawg

              when Gio first posted, the ENTIRE main forum page was all promos for online football sites -- no cooking/food discussions at all.

              It completely jammed the entire site.

              1. re: sunshine842

                But that doesn't actually "jam" the site. They're annoying, yes, but easily ignored. It's not a zero sum situation...one spam post doesn't prevent one real post from appearing. You guys are over-reacting a bit, imo.

                1. re: carolinadawg

                  but it did -- the entire -- and I mean the ENTIRE front page was football spam when Gio posted that complaint.

                  The fact that you didn't see it doesn't mean it wasn't there.

                  1. re: sunshine842

                    Last post on ths topic for me. I know the spam exists. I have seen it, and as I previously stated, it's annoying. Nonetheless, in my opinion (and that is a very important part of this post so please read it carefully) the spam doesn't "jam" the site. It's easy to ignore, and when reported, it is deleted quickly. Apparently, the "front page" is very important to you. (and by the way, the font page isn't the entire site) I guess it's not to me. I rarely look at it, as I'm usually looking at my saved boards where there will be only a few of the spam posts can be seen at a time.

                    Bottom ilne: My opinion on this matter doesn't make me wrong, doesn't make me less important as a 'hound and isn't a banishable offense, as others have stated.

                    1. re: carolinadawg

                      Depending on how the spammers are creating the posts, if they are running a program delivering multiple posts per minute, it can "jam" a site, making it lag and slow.

                      Since multiple people, reported it as "jamming" apparently, they found there was some lag.
                      Telling them to just ignore it, it was only annoying, is not helpful, and also untrue.
                      Sorry. Spam can and does cause a site to lag depending on how the spam is being posted.

                      1. re: Quine

                        We haven't had any reports of site slowness recently and don't think these spammers are slowing the site down, but if anyone has experienced site slowness at a time of high spam, please do let us know.

                        1. re: The Chowhound Team

                          There was no perceptible slowness this AM,06:30 EDT when I hit report.

                          1. re: The Chowhound Team

                            In fact, yesterday, when I made the above post, on another board, I had experienced a long "posting reply" time, that circle kept turning. It happens on occasion, I chalk it up to glitches. And do not send engineering posts.

                            Given that more than one poster on this thread specifically used the word, jammed and not spammed or any other wording, indicates that some felt, there was some loss of function.

                            Only one CHer is denying that it is possible. That is the point, I am responding to.

                          2. re: Quine

                            No one has specifically stated they experienced any degradation of site utility due to the spammers. I certainly haven't. Therefore, it would in fact appear to be only an annoyance. And my comments included a recommendation to report the spam to the mods, so that it can be deleted, which is done very quickly.

                            1. re: carolinadawg

                              "The football streamers have now effectively jammed the entire site." - Geo
                              "but none of my other boards get completely mired in it like this one."- Sunshine842
                              "As you can see, the invasion resumed 2 minutes after your post." - Veggo
                              "But for the caprice of timing, you have not suffered the worst of it." -Veggo
                              "It completely jammed the entire site." - Sunshine842
                              "Major kudos and props to the Mods for dealing with an over the top spam attacks.
                              Never seen it so bad " -Beach Chick
                              "THEY'RE BACK ....06:00 FOR THE START.......ATE THE ENTIRE PAGE 06:35" - Icool

                              So much for your "No one has specifically stated they experienced any degradation of site utility due to the spammers."
                              The facts do exist, and your statement "Therefore, it would in fact appear to be only an annoyance." is false.
                              Sorry charlie.

                              1. re: Quine

                                And yet, NONE of these comments include any problems using the site caused by the spam. I am baffled by your deep stubborness on this issue, guess its some sort of personal issue with me. Oh well.

                                1. re: carolinadawg

                                  Whoa……{{blowing into my referee whistle}}…..Time out!! Time out!!

                                  Ok let’s all agree to disagree on this topic. I for one have not even seen any spam nor have experienced anything wrong with the site and for that again I give prop’s to the Mod’s. (I’m sorry what’s that I have something on my nose?? Lol )

                                  As for the back and forth of who said what said where said……we can all express our opinions that’s what the site is designed for to express your opinions there is no need to be more right than someone else. Just like my Mom always told me “Opinions are like a@@holes……every body has one and some stink more than others.”

                                  Let’s all take a step back…..especially on a day as significant as today and just agree to listen to each other and respect each others opinions as mutual contributors to this site we all enjoy. Come on…everyone move in for a group {{hug}}……..ok all better!!

                                  Be well people.

                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                    Thanks -- we agree it is really time to let this argument go. We don't want spam on our site regardless of whether it degrades the actual performance of the site (we don't think it's doing that, but if you see a slow down in response times we are interested in hearing about it) or is just annoying and getting in the way of people finding the stuff they are interested in. So everyone, please continue to report spam using the 'report' button as you see it, since we can all agree the site is better off without it.

                                    1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                      Don’t worry Chow Team Jr has your back!!

                                      Hey on an unrelated topic to this thread but still “site talk” related may I ask you this question? I often see Mod’s who use their name most notably is “ Jacqueline” (real name or not is irrelevant). Then I often see “The Chowhound Team”…..is this or are you just one person or do multiple people who don’t want to use a “real name” post/moderate as The Chowhound Team?

                                      1. re: jrvedivici

                                        The Chowhound Team may be any of a group of people, mostly volunteers, who moderate the site. Jacquilynne is the Community Manager, a member of the site staff who manages the Team.

                                  2. re: carolinadawg

                                    I'm genearlly on your side dawg. I visit the site often throughout the day and really haven't noticed any problems over the last month. Same ole, same ole if you ask me.


                      2. re: sunshine842

                        Yes, I saw that too - only football posts on the main page

                    2. It appears the mods are doing a very credible job removing the crap.
                      One very useful thing to remember is not to ever click on the links that
                      are provided in the spam. This is not just a virus/security precaution.
                      The spammers are paid for producing hits to the sites they are spreading.
                      If CHs click a lot a lot, we will get much more of the same type of crap.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: justicenow

                        Good point, and as quickly as real hounds can post real posts to real threads, the spam gets wiped off the first page into oblivion.
                        Veggo sings: " if I had a rocket launcher...."

                        1. re: Veggo

                          And yet the fidiots will continue to steamroll their way through the boards all week-end. Oh well, the moderators certainly have their work cut out for themselves. A short while ago I had to do the same job on another site. As soon as I deleted two 6 more would show up. Almost impossible to keep up... It's a thankless job.

                      2. And now passports for any country you might want.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: sr44

                          At least it's a halfway useful product this time.

                        2. Hey, guys, we appreciate the spirited defense, but we're already blowing off our weekend to deal with spammers, so it'd be a great help if y'all could not reply to posts you know are gonna get yanked. Thanks much!


                          Your currently overworked, volunteer moderator team.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: The Chowhound Team

                            I *volunteer* to never reply to any spam posts...ever. So help me Dog.

                            1. re: The Chowhound Team

                              but kudos on working your asses off -- I see NOTHING from the fidiots (great word!) on Sunday morning.

                              1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                Your currently overworked, volunteer moderator team.'

                                Major kudos and props to the Mods for dealing with an over the top spam attacks.
                                Never seen it so bad and Veggo..you and I are cut from the same dish cloth..9/16 baby!

                                Busted gut when the Mods wrote 'Love'...

                              2. Well major prop's to the Mod's I guess, although I don't check as frequently on the weekends I didn't see any football related spam over the weekend.

                                7 Replies
                                1. re: jrvedivici

                                  There was some, but not much, due to the efforts of a few volunteer moderators who closely monitored the site as much as possible this weekend to either stop the spam before it started, or delete it as soon as it showed up. Thanks for showing your appreciation to these folks, it's appreciated.

                                  1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                    Wham! Bam! Mod's say "No more spam!" I do think the "proactive" approach that was taken is the way to handle these social reprobates, Kudos.

                                    1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                      Glad for the efforts.
                                      I sincerely hope the weekend all of you lost to this has come closer curative.The vigilance mode is tough 24/7.

                                      1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                        Ok so the curious George in me just want's to know what was the purpose of the spam? Product endorsement like " For your football bbq don't forget Purdue chicken wings" or more restaurants promoting football specials?

                                        @ Servorg "Wham! Bam!" thank you for the visual of the mod's wearing their masked caped crusading outfits while fighting our spam crime here in Chowthom City.

                                        1. re: jrvedivici

                                          About 2 minutes before I posted "THEY'RE BACK" I hit report on a NEW spam/shill post.

                                          It was gone just as fast

                                          1. re: jrvedivici

                                            The recent spam attacks haven't had anything to do with food; most of them are for online streaming video services.

                                          1. re: lcool

                                            If they were... they're gone now. 8 minutes after you posted. The Moderators are getting so Good at this.

                                            1. re: Gio

                                              I think even better than 8 minutes.
                                              Maybe even catching some before they enter.

                                          2. THEY'RE BACK ....06:00 FOR THE START.......ATE THE ENTIRE PAGE 06:35

                                            4 Replies
                                            1. re: lcool

                                              Hail the Chowhound Team! I noticed some bozo was putting up a bunch of posts about some football game on the Los Angeles board. I found this thread and when I checked back on L.A. board it's now all gone. Thanks for keeping it (the boards) clean and shiny.

                                              1. re: Feed_me

                                                Amazingly enough, I assume the same bozo has returned with a new nom de spam. I'm sure his useless posts will be relegated to the trash bin. Thanks in advance to the CHT.

                                                1. re: Feed_me

                                                  He has,there was ?1,I saw,early this AM.I think The Chowhound Team is now getting the guy at the gate.

                                                  1. re: lcool

                                                    they're baaack. and this time it's rugby.

                                                    why do they bother? the only thing I can think is the effort is so automated the purpose of the site they spam isn't even considered.

                                                    <edit> and yeah the next time the user interface is re-tooled, move or put another 'report' button at the top of each post so nobody has to scroll through the individual nonsense.

                                                    but then they're so blatant and the mod's are so vigilant, we probably don't have to bother reporting...

                                            2. Football spam is back, too. And, I believe I noticed something. I have had no problem using the back button this evening until a little while ago. The back button didn't work. When I clicked on the discussions tab and was taken to the main page, I saw the football spam. I had not seen that all evening. Is this a coincidence, or could there be some correlation?

                                              1. I was thinking. These spammers have all just created ids. Would it be possible to hold the posts of a new id for twenty-four hours? I think this might make tracking the spammers a little more easy.

                                                9 Replies
                                                1. re: Vidute

                                                  We've definitely talked about things like that, but that ends up having a huge impact on real newbies who just want to ask a question and we don't want them to get frustrated and leave.

                                                  1. re: Jacquilynne

                                                    A minor impact on a few newbies is the lesser evil compared to the nuisance factor to your throngs of faithful followers. As I have mentioned numerous times, limit newbies to posting one thread on day 1.

                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                      Wow..I completely disagree with that...if I had came here all those years ago and signed up without being allowed to post I would never been back.

                                                      1. re: LaLa

                                                        New posters could post, their handy work just wouldn't show on the board for 24 hours the first time around (until they cleared the "spam test" hurdle).

                                                      2. re: Veggo

                                                        That seems extreme to me. But any user could be prevented from creating more than two new threads in an hour, say. The third attempt would block the user id from posting until a moderator reviewed the activity.

                                                        What I don't understand is why the id of an obvious spammer cannot be blocked quickly, in any case.

                                                        1. re: GH1618

                                                          I mentioned limiting multiple new THREADS in a short interval, not posts. I don't envision many legitimate circumstances for a newbie to need/want a shitload of threads in a short time, or why they should be entitled to do so. Maybe newbies should walk before they run?

                                                          1. re: Veggo

                                                            I think that a limit of one new thread per hour would be enough for any legitimate user (newbie or oldie) and it would make the site unattractive for the current form of spamming. However, I am not recommending this solution, because (1) the spammers could just start posting their messages as replies in existing threads (which will be 100 times more insidious and annoying than what they're doing now) and (2) this sort of spam should ideally be dealt with discreetly upstream without explicitly imposing global restrictions on all users.

                                                            That said, anyone (human or bot) who posts 10 times in one minute (or whatever it is) should be automatically flagged and blocked.

                                                            1. re: DeppityDawg

                                                              I agree.I think your example of 10 in one minute from the same IP should be obvious and easy to flag or block.

                                                      3. re: Jacquilynne

                                                        I wonder if there isn't a way to somehow push spam threads onto page 2 very quickly using programming legerdemain, before the CH Team cleans up the trash on aisle 2 (rather than it being overly conspicuous awaiting clean up on aisle 1) at their leisure? That would keep the hounds who hate the defacement of the site much calmer and more sanguine about the whole episode, along with keeping you all from having to go into scramble mode behind the curtain.

                                                        Just a thought.

                                                    2. Oh yeah... they're back with a vengeance. Looks like the moderators are faced with loosing another week-end. How frustrating...

                                                      1. Ironically there was just a football spammer post directly above this one!

                                                        I reported it and the mods removed it in a minute.

                                                        5 Replies
                                                        1. re: meatn3

                                                          When we're around, we're usually actively scanning for spam these days and (thanks to a new tool Engineering gave us this week!) can find and deal with it quickly. There are times when no mod is on site and spam may sit a bit longer, but we can easily find it when we're back on site. Feel free to keep reporting it, though, especially if it helps with the frustration!

                                                          1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                                            Maybe a tool that lets long time hounds who sign up for it the power to zap spam posts when they see it (Junior Moderator Merit Badges for those that want them)?

                                                            It takes a village to erase a spammer... (channeling my inner Hillary)

                                                            1. re: carolinadawg

                                                              Only one kind of post would be deleted by site members. That would be these outright, no question, multiple post spam attack advertisements for sports that we are seeing, time after time after time. All other types would be left to the moderating team.

                                                              1. re: Servorg

                                                                There's no way for us to give a "limited delete" power. And while we'd hope that anyone not on the moderation team who was given access to a delete button would use it only for deleting spam, there's no way we could guarantee that. Unfortunately there's probably too much risk involved in this to make it worth the time to ask Engineering to create such an option.

                                                                1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                                                  oh yeah CT, well when I rule the world...

                                                                  honestly I don't really give that much of a crap if there are a gazillion junk threads that I need to skim past. sure it's annoying, but in the larger scheme of things I have worse stuff to find irritating. and in time it gets cleaned up and life goes on.

                                                                  and I really don't think ya ought to grant us editing rights (well OK maybe someone like servorg) or limiting first time posters - too frustrating for them to stick around.

                                                        2. Big props to the team, by the way -- I know others have said that the junk has popped up from time to time -- but I haven't seen a single one in a week now.

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                                            Where were you for yesterday's blitzkrieg for the rugby and football fun?

                                                            The team was able to shut them out after a while and they're still not back. Yeahhhh!

                                                            1. re: Vidute

                                                              I said I haven't seen it...I wasn't even doubting that anyone else saw it.

                                                              Because of time differences, I'm frequently on the boards while even the East Coasters of the US are still in bed.

                                                              1. re: sunshine842

                                                                I was just miffed that you missed out on all the fun! ;)

                                                          2. New spam. Replies = -1 and when you click on it to report it, it comes up as page unavailable.

                                                            10 Replies
                                                            1. re: sr44

                                                              Probably because it's already been deleted; it just hasn't shown up that way yet. Nothing to fret about.

                                                              1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                Well, I kept refreshing the main page, and they persisted. I think they're gone now.

                                                                1. re: sr44

                                                                  That's the result of a new spam-fighting tool our Engineering team is working on installing. It's still a bit buggy, obviously, but hopefully once we get it fully working it'll keep spam from even appearing.

                                                                    1. re: Jacquilynne

                                                                      That's brilliant, Jacquilynne...! Many thanks to The Team.

                                                                        1. re: sunshine842

                                                                          Yeah, but now how do I get a direct live feed for a soccer game I care nothing about?

                                                                        2. re: Jacquilynne

                                                                          Back to the drawing board (LA Board Has Been Inundated like something out of Noah and the Great Flood)...

                                                                          1. re: Servorg

                                                                            Although, that was a pretty darn fast clean up on aisles 1, 2, 3, and 4. So I take back my "back to the drawing board" comment and say "Way to go Mod Team - rah!" ;-D>

                                                                  1. I must say whenever I see a thread with a lot of extra diacritical and punctuation, I can feel my blood pressure rising, until I realize it's OK.

                                                                    1. bastards wormed their way through again over on the LA board...

                                                                      But you're winning, Mods -- you're winning.

                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: sunshine842

                                                                        Yes, it seems the moderators are doing a commendable job keeping the spammers at bay.

                                                                        1. re: Tripeler

                                                                          Perhaps, if we are lucky and Engineering is good, someday we may find them all gathered at the appropriate spot: http://www.spam.com/spam-101/the-spam...

                                                                      2. Arsenal vs Coventry anyone? Anyone?? LOL

                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                          I do note that the attack stalled at 9 new threads, and it's already all gone. So the fix is really working in the favor of the site and our community.

                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                              so Gio, is it safe to say you're a CHOW United supporter/hooligan?

                                                                              1. re: hill food

                                                                                You can call me a CHOW Supporter, you can call me a CHOW Hooligan, but never call me a CHOW United supporter/hooligan...

                                                                          1. 07:50 Saturday,they just ate the board

                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: lcool

                                                                              Nice wake-up call for the week-end...

                                                                              1. re: Gio

                                                                                Their breakfast habits just suck

                                                                            2. Just reported a batch that appeared on the LA board. No degradation of site utility at all.

                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                              1. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                Maybe the LA board should be deleted, that seems to be the cause of the problems.

                                                                                1. re: kengk

                                                                                  One lone spam "sports" post showed up on the LA board this morning. It never got beyond that single post and it's gone now. Great job Engineering and Mod's.

                                                                                  1. re: Servorg

                                                                                    just saw a small stack of 'em pop up in various European boards, in assorted European languages, which may slip past the automated word flags.

                                                                                    But so much progress!

                                                                                2. re: carolinadawg

                                                                                  No degradation of the site but Very Bloody Annoying... and I don't like to be annoyed quite so early in the morning thank you.

                                                                                3. still here,more than 35 minutes

                                                                                  1. Wooohoooo... Love the -1 for the spammer posts. Great work, Team!!