Forums shut down

I have decided to close down the discussion forums at The existing content is still available to view but you will not be able to post anything.

For the past couple of years they have been subject to repeated spam attacks. Since new users have to have their first post moderated, this was initially reasonably easy to manage, although irritating and time-consuming.

However, it has become increasing difficult. Rather than posting some random text, most spammers now use a trick of copying some random sentences from a previous post, making them harder to detect.

Anyone spamming in this way is instantly banned from the boards and it is a measure of the volume of spam that roughly 1/4 of all registered board users are now banned.

Then today, I saw a post which had taken a previous post and obfusticated it by replacing words and phrases with others that mean essentially the same thing but are expressed differently (for example the sentence “This syntax is not yet fully handled” was replaced with “This language structure is not yet completely taken care of”).

If all the spammers evolve to use this trick (as they did with the previous trick) it will be virtually impossible to detect them all and I don’t have the time to keep fighting them off, especially when the forums aren’t used very much.

So apologies, but I have now shut them down. I recommend using the abcusers mailing list instead.



One Response to “Forums shut down”

  1. Francesco says:

    Forums can be a real pain to manage, especially battling against spammers… Mailing lists are better equipped with spam filtering (and they provide a unified interface for the user), so that looks good to me. Long live abc!