Let's see.... let me take a deep breath and figure out why I'm here......  I have been very happy with phpBB in the past and it has not been until recently that it seems like the community is changing. I'm still on phpBB because it is unclear whether the current phpBB should be run without modifications - I don't remember this happening before.  Also, volume of spam has exploded this year, requiring several hours work each week to whack the spam.  To a certain extent all message boards have the same issue, but I'm hoping, some may be more proactive in producing tools to deal with the spam.

I noticed that some of the websites that I frequent were running punBB, so I thought I'd stop by and try to figure out why some are running punBB even though phpBB has been around quite a while and is free.  Thanks.

I seem to have reached a difference of opinion on the phpBB board about the benefits from comparing features between message board systems - so, I just though I'd ask what punbb's position is on the acceptability of discussions which compare features between punBB and other boards.
Here is the discussion and the reasons presented from both sides of this issue on the phpbb board:

How about trying out a new tool that was recently announced. I'll setup a SkypeCast on the subject of Message Board Anti-spam Measures at 10 am MST (-7 GMT - I think) today, Friday May 19th:

SkypeCast page:

Message Bard Anti-spam Measures skype cast page:
https://skypecasts.skype.com/skypecasts … _talk=5949
SkypeCast results from 5/19/2006:
For the first 15 minutes, no one else entered, then in a network administratior form LA and a computer consultant from Germany joined in and we had an interesting audio discussion that ran a half hour longer than the designated time where we discussed, spam emails, forum spam and guest book spam.  If anyone is interested in doing another one, I'd be glad to join in or originate.


(11 replies, posted in PunBB 1.2 discussion)

Without getting into a flame war, why do you wish to move to punbb from phpbb?


(68 replies, posted in PunBB 1.2 discussion)

If deterring forum spam was easy, we wouldn't be having this discussion.  The initial question was "How big a problem is spam"?  In my opinion the problem is huge, to the extent that as it continues to increase in volume and sophistication, spam will be fatal to boards like I run, which are open to the general public.

The solution is 2 steps:
(1) Totally eliminate the effect of the members without posts spam by not listing members without posts in the member list or in the newest member display.  This approach should be the default and should put an end to the member list spam problem.

(2) The spam battle will be in the area of posts with #1 above in place.  We certainly will do all the image verification, activation hurdles, required registration to post, moderator and admin post reviews which will keep a lot of spam out.  However, in the end, as with email spam, the spammers will post.  As in spam email, forum spam on my boards now exceed non spam posts.  I think a popular email spam approach may work with forum spam.  Have white list posters (have gained our trust), black list posters that we ban now, and we need a grey list poster designation.  There needs to be an option for Posts by grey list members who have not yet gained our trust to be placed in a pending file, hidden from the public, that can be reviewed by moderators and admins. The admin or moderator would then either allow the message to be made public or delete the member and all of their pending posts (hopefully with one click) if they are not appropriate for the board.



(68 replies, posted in PunBB 1.2 discussion)

Good point on the accessibility.  Perhaps we could have trusted and non-trusted users where only the non-trusted get the image.

I have wondered the same thing <b> seems much more concise than <strong>.   As far as blind posting - remember that is not just completely blind, but also sight impared - and yes, many of us may be come sight impared - if not now, perhaps as you get older.


(68 replies, posted in PunBB 1.2 discussion)

As I indicated, I haven't blocked .ru and I'm trying the best to not to because I value participation from Russia.  However, with user (email) registration activation, I and others have noticed that many of the Spammers have .ru email addresses.  I do know that if very many boards block .ru that the spammers will just use another extension.


(68 replies, posted in PunBB 1.2 discussion)

My experience with forum spam is radically different !  I noticed that several of the boards that I visit are using PunBB, so I thought I'd pay a visit.  I run several boards with another popular BB system.  Until this year, I would have had similar opinions to those expressed about forum spam.  However, this year things have changed.  My boards, like many others have had constant spamming. 

I encourage you to incorporate robust anti-spam measures into PunBB.

Current anti-spam measures that I have in place now on my boards - some requiring modifications:

(1) Image verification for registration - helps some, would like one that is harder to crack.  Also would like the option for image verification on posts.

(2) Memberlist does not list members with 0 posts.  If you have an option to sort by joined descending, you may find that spammers are in under your radar and using their website links in the memberlist to advertise porn sites, etc.  We do not list members with 0 posts and plan on deleting all members without posts once a month with a script.

(3) I have never allowed Guest posts.

(4) Tried user (email), none and admin authorization - user (email) seemed to work the best in my situation - admin would be better if you know the registrants.

(5) Admin notify on all new posts (probably should also have on replies) - each new post generates an email to 3 admins - the first one to be available checks out the posts and either replies if they have something to say or deletes the post if spam - we try to be fast and get the spam off as quickly as possible.  Would prefer to have an option to only notify for posts if a new or non-trusted member, but have not implemented this yet.

(6) Considering banning all registrations with .ru address, but have not done this yet.

(7) I really want an Easy De-Spam button where with one click on a post, an administrator can delete the user and all posts for the user.

With the above, we have made a definite difference in reducing spam, but I would have to say that automated and real people spammers are better at adjusting and getting on boards than I am at defending the boards.  Any additional ideas greatly appreciated.

If your message board has much traffic and does not have a problem with forum spam, consider yourself lucky and I can't help wondering if you and I must be on different planets - or maybe spam is on its way.