NEW POSTERS: Please note: Weirdness with moderation queue

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Chip, Apr 27, 2010.

  1. Chip

    Chip Administrator

    This problem should only be affecting posters with less than a certain number of posts.

    Because we are a pretty high-traffic site, high ranking we have a large number of spammers that attempt to post here, either selling their worthless crap, or trying to promote their website.

    We use a whole bunch of automated tools that filter and detect posts that are likely to be spam, and those posts, particularly from new members, get thrown into the moderation queue.

    Usually, the automated tools are extremely accurate, but recently they have been flagging posts that don't seem to have any obvious reason for flagging. We're trying to be more diligent about checking the moderation queue more frequently, but right now, it may take up to a few hours to have it reviewed and released if your post gets flagged. (Once you've made a bunch of posts, your messages will no longer be subject to the automated filter.)

    I apologize for the problem. We're working on it as we speak, but it's a tough balance; I would rather temporarily delay a handful of posts and catch the spam posts, than set the filters too low and let the spam through, because that almost immediately increases the amount of spam, as soon as spammers figure out ways they can (temporarily) evade our moderation.

    New members and new contributions to degreeinfo help keep the board lively, as well as contributing to the combined knowledge and conversation, so it is important to us that new members not be "put off" by the moderation. We really appreciate your understanding.
  2. TechGolfer

    TechGolfer New Member

    I've seen this happen to a couple of my posts...because I am new...but I agree wholeheartedly with the philosophy of being overly protective. The inconvenience for this is slight compared to a "clean" board. Not an issue.
  3. Han

    Han New Member

    Just an FYI - I could not sign in for about 1-2 weeks. It just kept taking me to the homepage and not let me post. I am kind of newbie though :)
  4. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    Don't worry, automatic moderation ceases when you reach 5,000 posts :)
  5. jodied

    jodied New Member

    Thanks for the explanation. I was wondering what had happened to my posts!
  6. John Bear

    John Bear Senior Member

    MC: "Don't worry, automatic moderation ceases when you reach 5,000 posts"

    JB: Hey, hey. Only 37 more to go, and no more moderation. Then watch out, world. John Bear, unleashed.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 30, 2010
  7. thehenryfam

    thehenryfam New Member

    Ah... I just sent an email to the "webmaster" of the board (not sure who that goes to). I have posted about five messages over the last three days (they were all responses in one thread that I had started), and none of them has shown up yet. I was beginning to think someone around here didn't like me.

    Any chance those will eventually appear, or am I out of luck?

    Also, what is the threshhold for new members' posts being able to pass through without moderation?

  8. Chip

    Chip Administrator

    There isn't anything in the moderation queue at present so your posts have probably been approved.

    The problem is... when they are approved, the posts appear at the date and time they were made, not the time they were approved. So they may be up further in the threads in question. If that happened, just repost, and message me if they go to moderation again and I'll approve them for you immediately.

    I apologize for the problem and we are working on it. We don't reveal the exact number of posts you need to escape auto-moderation because the spammers would then post that number of bogus posts (they are getting really, really aggressive recently.) But what I can tell you is your posts are much less likely to go into the queue if they don't have any URLs in them. There is something else besides that which is triggering moderation but I haven't yet figured out what it is; that's what I'm working on trying to solve now.
  9. thehenryfam

    thehenryfam New Member

    Well, I guess those posts were deleted because they are still nowhere to be found. All 4-5 were in the "Intro and CLEP advice" thread in the "CLEP, DANTES, and Other Exams for Credit" section. No huge loss as I was mostly thanking people for their advice and giving further clarification on my situation, but I just wanted to let you know.

  10. Ian Anderson

    Ian Anderson Active Member

    Here are two of your previous posts:
  11. thehenryfam

    thehenryfam New Member

  12. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    I think that you'll find your missing posts on the coffee table in the living room. It seems they had fallen between the couch cushions. Sorry. ;)
  13. Chip

    Chip Administrator

    ok, something's even weirder, because I just searched by user and found all of your posts waiting for approval, but they weren't showing up in the moderation queue. I've approved all of them.

    I will look into this further. I apologize for the problem
  14. thehenryfam

    thehenryfam New Member

    No problem at all! Thanks for finding and approving those. And I hope you are able to get your issue corrected.


  15. NCommander

    NCommander New Member

    Sounds like your dealing with some sorta database corruption, or an index problem. May be a VERY good idea to do a full database dump, offline the board, then run REPAIR TABLE *tablename*; or at least check table. Its unlikely, but you also might need the extended issue. MySQL database corruption pretty common if the tables are in MyISAM format (which is likely given the age of this site), might be worth migrating to InnoDB.
  16. Maniac Craniac

    Maniac Craniac Moderator Staff Member

    Chip, if you are hiring, I think we have your (wo)man. :D
  17. zefrench

    zefrench New Member

    my first 2 posts are also waiting for approval. I bet they required approval due to URL being present.
  18. Chip

    Chip Administrator

    Please tell me the threads where they've been posted and i'll take care of it. For some reason, not all the posts being thrown into moderation are showing up in the moderation queue.
  19. NCommander

    NCommander New Member

    Still happening to me too :-/. Chip: any information if the DB is ok? If you have access, the mysql logs generally can also help. Otherwise, you might want to try tracing the code; I don't remember vB's guts too well, so I don't remember if the spam filter is a standard feature or not.

    It might also be useful to do a side-by-side installation with the same codebase, and see if its an environment issue, or an issue with the code itself.

    EDIT: wow, that one went through
  20. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator Staff Member

    I would just like to confirm that at this moment there are no posts or threads awaiting moderation. Sorry if that messes you up. Goodnight everybody.

Share This Page