I posted this in another thread in response to a comment about the spam:
Yes, in the 24 hours prior to today, well over a hundred spammers registered, in bunches. A number of them posted dozens of spams in just minutes before being nuked, and some just spammed in their profiles, and got nuked before they could post other spam.
Today there were only 9 more so far Im aware of, after Justin chnaged some of the signup stuff to make it a little harder.
Apparently there's a huge wave of new spammers out there, most likely spambots infecting computers as a virus, given reports I have had from friends with lots of new computer problems in the last few days, and the large variation in IP addresses (making it impossible to just nuke a range and stop the problem).
Other forums are having the same or worse problems, an upsurge of ten to a hundred times the usual.
There's quite a few possible ways to make it harder for spammers to even register, and we're thinking up more, but so far none of the new ones have been implemented, until they can be coded up and tested on a spare server/copy of the boards, to make sure they don't break the real one first.
Any new ways anyone has of trying to control spam are all welcome; we might ahve already thougth about it but maybe we didnt'. Justin just thought of one today that hadn't occured to me, and I have come up with several long pages of possible methods, based on my experiences trying to stem the tide so far, in my time as spam-control-moderator.
I dunno how effective any will be, but we'll find out as we try them.
I hope we do come up with some good ways that keep working, cuz I could definitely use the time I normally have to spend hunting down spammers, verifying every single new member signup to see if their profile is spammy, or their IP or other info matches a known spammer in one of the many databases of such. I guess it uses up an hour a night on bad nigths, maybe half that on good ones, and I don't even wanna think about how much time it was last night (or the other night...i'm tired enough to be a little confused on that one).
And I am not the only one controlling spam, using up time to do it; so there's way too many man-hours wasted on that sort of thing.
I wish it was cost-effective to pursue spammers via legal routes, becuase there are countries that have laws against this sort of thing, and processes to take care of it, but nobody has the money to spend on doing it, especialy since "there's always more where that came from".
If we could just make advertising itself illegal, then all the search engines wouldnt' have ads, or ad placement on pages, or any of hte things that make most of these keyword and link spammers have a reason for existence.