To help combat spam – Should we build an invite system? 🤔
@email@example.com is it getting to an annoying level?
I would rather see a lot of other features before.
What are the advantages to an invite system compares to just close registration and add a contact form for applying for an account?
Years ago I moderated a forum and found any and all of the following can help
- IP blacklists preventing registration
- CAPTCHA at registration time
- Email confirmation at registration time
- A “reputation” system limiting what new users can post
- Setting all links in posts nofollow (kills the benefit of SEO spam)
- Run through akismet before posts are posted (you could probably get spamassassin to do this too?)
- Extremely ruthless blocking
I say that because one issue with an invite system is that it generates manual labor too. It could stop people from making spammy posts, sure. But it burdens someone with investigating potential new users, and if those new users are human and not bots, they can play nice till they get their account and then start posting spam anyway. It’s important to have layers of (semi-) automated systems so that the humans doing the ultimate moderating aren’t overwhelmed.