Can registrations on kbin.social be disabled to stop spammers

kbin.social is being overrun with spammers. Can we disable registrations on this instance so they can't keep creating new accounts? Every day I log on, I have to spend the first 20-30 minutes, reporting and blocking a bunch of new accounts.

Here are some that were just created today:
https://kbin.social/u/dfgdfgfdfgfdh
https://kbin.social/u/nyfejevy
https://kbin.social/u/vepotal774
https://kbin.social/u/ayman01
https://kbin.social/u/MariaesNichols
https://kbin.social/u/nidhiroute
https://kbin.social/u/dcesdff
https://kbin.social/u/mauntehilss
https://kbin.social/u/nidhirout
https://kbin.social/u/noraharris0

Oofnik,

Hear hear!

rimu,
@rimu@piefed.social avatar

It's hard to imagine Kbin coming back from being abandoned by it's only developer, admin and moderator. Twice.

Is it time to move on?

Other Kbin instances - https://fedidb.org/software/kbinMbin instances - https://fedidb.org/software/mbin

Or try https://piefed.social for something completely different.

Pamasich,
Pamasich avatar

Ernest hasn't abandoned kbin this time, he did post an update last week.

Today, I'm going for a minor procedure at the hospital, and I won't be available for the next 2-4 days. When I return, I'll push all the corrections and fixes I've been working on and present plans for the near future.

Him not being back yet probably means the hospital procedure didn't go as smoothly as expected, but he's not gone on purpose.

rimu,
@rimu@piefed.social avatar

The CSAM posts from 4 days ago are still on kbin.social. They have been reported, but no action taken.

Drusas,

That's partly a fault of not enough kbin users stepping up to moderate magazines.

ProdigalFrog,
ProdigalFrog avatar

It seems like having more admins here would be greatly beneficial in combatting that problem. Is Ernest open to having additional admins? AFAIK he is the only one, and he's cleary biting off more than he can chew.

Drusas,

I'm talking more about admins of specific magazines. I don't know where Ernest stands on instance admins.

SharkAttak,
SharkAttak avatar

So you went and thought: "Let's take this chance to make an unverified claim and advertise this other instances in a single post!"
but it was a shitty move, let me tell you.

rimu,
@rimu@piefed.social avatar
Pamasich,
Pamasich avatar

Ernest has said in the update I mentioned in my other comment that

When I return, I'll push all the corrections and fixes I've been working on

This means he has made local commits over those 2 months that simply haven't been pushed yet.

Also, there is in fact a commit made 4 days ago. Though not from ernest.

SharkAttak,
SharkAttak avatar

Call me petty but I'm gonna block this piefed thing..

QualifiedKitten,

Are you guys browsing by new? Do you moderate active communities? I'm just curious to understand why we seem to have such different experiences since I only encounter spam once or twice per week, but I definitely spend way too many hours scrolling.

HeartyBeast,
HeartyBeast avatar

Yes, I quite often browse by new

DarkNightoftheSoul,

I have like 90% of communities blocked

FarraigePlaisteach,
FarraigePlaisteach avatar

I spend more time blocking spammers than anything else. I’m sure it will improve once this issue gets more attention, but for now I think I’ll take a break from this site.

EmptyRadar,
EmptyRadar avatar

I agree that this may be the only real solution for the time being. I have personally been trying to submit good content to my favorite magazines to combat some of the spam, but there is a real influx of it and it's making it difficult to use the site.

ThatOneKirbyMain2568,
ThatOneKirbyMain2568 avatar

This might be a good idea, at least until Ernest gets back. To my knowledge, he's the only instance admin, so as long as he's inactive, the spammers won't get dealt with (especially on magazines he moderates, like /m/tech).

Ideally, there could be another admin or two to deal with this stuff when he's not available, but ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

Hello_there,

Metafilter had a charge of a dollar or two to sign up, and no recurring payments. Seems like a good way to prevent spammers.
Not too much of a hurdle to cross, especially if payments are thru Amazon or some other existing service ppl have trust in. Any funds go to server costs.

HubertManne,
HubertManne avatar

you know I think one of the smarter things facebook did was only allowing edu emails initially or google allowing current users to send invites.

snooggums,
snooggums avatar

Facebook doing edu (initially only one school) only was to target a specific audience. Google followed the exclusivity model to gain hype and encourage word of mouth.

Neither did it for security reasons and both switched to open sign-ups once they reached a certain level of users.

HubertManne,
HubertManne avatar

I did not work at either at levels where I would know their reasons but whatever their reasons it did make growth in the start slow and steady.

BasicTraveler,

Getting a free .edu account is trivial.

HubertManne,
HubertManne avatar

not for spammers. it was a nice first level filter till they had the resources to do more effective spam fighting (which they don't do all that well)

BasicTraveler,

No, it's incredibly easy to get a .edu account.

HubertManne,
HubertManne avatar

Why don't automated spam systems use them then? Its easy for an individual but its not super automately like google. At least at my alma matter its not.

BasicTraveler,

I think you're thinking 4 year college, not 2 years. It takes a lot of effort and money to apply to a 4 year school. It takes like 5 minutes to apply at your local community college online and get a .edu email address, and it's free.

Using .edu as some sort of validation is a terrible idea because it's something anyone can get with just a few minutes of work.

HubertManne,
HubertManne avatar

yeah thats for an an individual though. A robotic spam account that needs to make a thousand accounts automatically is not going to make one so easily. spam from individuals is much easier to deal with than machine spam.

BasicTraveler,

It is stupid easy to get a free .edu account. It will not hamper spammers in the slightest. Even if they don’t want to make a few .edu accounts a day to do their spamming, they can just buy .edu accounts in bulk for about 10 cents per. No one is making thousands of kbin accounts to spam from, they make a handful a day, and use them till they get banned. Then they make a few more.

.edu accounts are a terrible way to try and prevent spam on kbin. There is literally an industry around generating fake .edu accounts. You can buy them in bulk. Some colleges receive 10’s of thousands of fake applications a month trying to get free .edu emails.

HubertManne,
HubertManne avatar

Yeah I had no idea they could be bought it bulk. I thought you had to be registered. Granted there are all the for profit colleges now. Would not be surprised if they straight sold them directly.

Gordon_Freeman,
Gordon_Freeman avatar

yeah, I spend more time downvoting a blocking spammers than anything else

HeartyBeast,
HeartyBeast avatar

I spend a lot of time downvoting and reporting and I've volunteered to co-mod the worst offending subs that I'm subnscribed to. It's not clear that any of this has any effect.

At this point, it feels like a bit of a lost cause.

Drusas,

What we really need is more people stepping up to moderate.

rhythmisaprancer,
rhythmisaprancer avatar

Are there some key magazines that need it? I will step up, if only to play whack a mole as I understand it.

Drusas,

I'm honestly not sure. I haven't been seeing too much of these problem accounts myself. I moderate m/politics and it hasn't been a problem for us yet. I would suggest making a note of which magazines you are seeing this behavior on, and if it's something that is up your alley, reach out to Ernest to ask for moderation privileges. He's very happy to give them to others who are dedicated.

rhythmisaprancer,
rhythmisaprancer avatar

Ya I've perused the list, but there doesn't seem to be overlap. Maybe I should just grab one, any one, to get the hang of it.

ProdigalFrog,
ProdigalFrog avatar

https://kbin.social/m/opensource is plastered with spam, that would be a good one to moderate.

rhythmisaprancer,
rhythmisaprancer avatar

I'm not sure how to request that one since it has an active owner. I did request another that was available.

HeartyBeast,
HeartyBeast avatar

I’ve volunteered for several over the last month. Never heard a thing. -in particular science, fediverse, tech where large amounts of spam seem to occur and which seem abandoned

jwr1,
@jwr1@kbin.earth avatar

I also volunteered for the linux magazine a month ago because it had some spam, but I haven't heard anything back.

rhythmisaprancer,
rhythmisaprancer avatar

We could at least offload some work from Ernest

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