Anti-Splog 1.0 RC2 – Beta Testers Needed!

This is the one you all have been waiting for! The ultimate plugin to stop and kill splogs in WPMU.

We have been testing and tweaking this on Edublogs.org for more than a month, and it’s helped us kill more than 10,000 splogs already. While the plugin is very stable, it is such an advanced and powerful plugin that we wanted to give it a soft launch to iron any minor kinks and give our API server a chance to roll up. So test away! Time to clean up your WPMU site and make some sploggers really mad!

I recommend you read the documentation really well to make sure you understand how all the features work before running, and please give us feedback on both the plugin features and documentation on this thread. Have fun!

You can get your API key here: https://premium.wpmudev.org/wp-admin/profile.php?page=ustapi

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The plugin works in 3 phases:

  1. Signup prevention – these measures are mainly to stop bots. User friendly error messages are shown to users if any of these prevent signup. They are all optional and include:
    • Limiting the number of signups per IP per 24 hours (this can slow down human spammers too if the site clientele supports it. Probably not edublogs though as it caters to schools which may need to make a large number of blogs from one IP)
    • Changing the signup page location every 24 hours – this is one of the most effective yet still user-friendly methods to stop bots dead.
    • Human tests – answering user defined questions, picking the cat pics, or recaptcha.

  2. The API – when signup is complete (email activated) and blog is first created, or when a user publishes a new post it will send all kinds of blog and signup info to our premium server where we will rate it based on our secret ever-tweaking logic. Our API will then return a splog Certainty number (0%-100%). If that number is greater than the sensitivity preference you set in the settings (80% default) then the blog gets spammed. Since the blog was actually created, it will show up in the site admin still (as spammed) so you can unspam later if there was a mistake (and our API will learn from that).
  3. The Moderation Queue – for existing blogs or blogs that get past other filters, the queue provides an ongoing way to monitor blogs and spam or flag them as valid (ignore) them more easily as they are updated with new posts. Also if a user tries to visit a blog that has been spammed, it will now show a user-friendly message and form to contact the admin for review if they think it was valid. The email contains links to be able to easily unspam or bring up the last posts. The entire queue is AJAX based so you can moderate blogs with incredible speed.
    • Suspected Blogs – this list pulls in any blogs that the plugin thinks may be splogs. It pulls in blogs that have a greater that 0% certainty as previously returned by our api, and those that contain at least 1 keyword in recent posts from the keyword list you define. The list attempts to bring the most suspected blogs to the top, ordered by # of keyword matches, then % splog certainty (as returned by the API), then finally by last updated. The list has a bunch of improvements for moderation, including last user id, last user ip, links to search for or spam any user and their blogs or blogs tied to an IP (be careful with that one!), ability to ignore (dismiss) valid blogs from the queue, and a list of recent posts and instant previews of their content or the entire blog without leaving the page (the most time saving feature of all!)
    • Recent Splogs – this is simply a list of all blogs that have been spammed on the site ever, in order of the time they were spammed. The idea here is that if you make a mistake you can come back here to undo. Also if a user complains that a valid blog was spammed, you can quickly pull it up here and see previews of the latest posts to confirm (normally you wouldn’t be able to see blog content at all).
    • Ignored Blogs – If a valid blog shows up in the suspect list, simply mark it as ignored to get it out of there. It will then show in the ignored list just in case you need to undo.