Spring Cleaning 2019

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Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Mr. Tines » Thu Feb 14, 2019 4:37 am

There are over a thousand accounts with zero posts, many of which have been inactive for years (many last active for only a few hours after sign-up). We are proposing a clean-up of zero post accounts not active since the end of 2017 at the end of March, which should give enough time for lurkers to check in.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Mr. Tines » Sun Mar 31, 2019 4:32 am

A total of 631 zero post or never activated accounts have now been removed.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby robersora » Sun Mar 31, 2019 4:04 pm

^
Thanks for the purge :)
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Blockio » Mon Apr 01, 2019 3:09 pm

631. Jesus,that is one hell of a big number
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby DarkBluePhoenix » Mon Apr 01, 2019 8:17 pm

^ If 631 is a big number, what do think of a number over 9,000?
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Shamsiel-kun » Sun Apr 07, 2019 9:54 am

View Original PostBlockio wrote:631. Jesus,that is one hell of a big number


No, that would be 666. :emogendo:
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby TheFriskyIan » Tue May 07, 2019 1:24 pm

Question: Do inactive accounts such as those pose a problem for the site as a whole? Just out of curiosity, I have no problem seeing inactive accounts getting purged just for cleanliness sake.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby pwhodges » Tue May 07, 2019 2:26 pm

Programs and databases can both accumulate out-of-date parts and data (sometimes known as "cruft", a term originated in an article by a former colleague of mine) which, while they may not be harmful in themselves, can obscure the form of a program or valid data and reduce performance simply by being there. Programmers therefore like to keep their code and data as clean as possible - not because any particular cleanup will make a material difference, but to prevent the possibility that over time the accumulated cruft really would get in the way.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Mr. Tines » Tue May 07, 2019 4:36 pm

In this case, while having the effect of bringing the headline membership count on the front page back to something closer to reality, the main point was to make it easier to spot throwaway accounts created just for the purpose of link spamming.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Mr. Tines » Sat Aug 31, 2019 3:43 am

Time for another round.

Accounts created before 1-Sep-2019 and not activated by 30-Sep-2019 will be purged.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby A.T. Fish » Mon Sep 02, 2019 6:02 am

What does "activating" mean exactly? Is it necessary to post or would a login suffice? I realize that by posting this question I'm already saving my account but others could be wondering the same thing.

Also, this purge seems a bit extreme. Why is it happening, if I may ask?

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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby pwhodges » Mon Sep 02, 2019 6:21 am

Idle accounts are often "sleepers for later spamming, for instance. Also to keep user statistics meaningful.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Mr. Tines » Mon Sep 02, 2019 7:16 am

View Original PostA.T. Fish wrote:What does "activating" mean exactly?
It means completing the sign-up process, and then logging in; something you did 8 years ago.

If you look at the member list for the recently joined, it's the accounts marked with "(Inactive)" against the user name, i.e. have not yet shown any signs of activity.
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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby Zoop » Thu Sep 05, 2019 7:31 am

I noticed a large influx of spam/bot accounts on social media, probably in preparation of the next american presidential election. On imgur, for example, throw away accounts that spam relatively safe stuff to build a reputation, and then start inserting political comments. It's a really weird phenomena, but apparantly it works (it's still not clear how much was meddled with the last election).

So leading up to that, you'll see more and more bot accounts.
Now, I doubt it'll affect evageeks much, since the subjects being discussed here are pretty focussed, and not so random as most social media is.
However, it's still possible to get a decent collection of bots, just because they'll try to infest/infect everything (regardless of how effective it is).

So yeah, for people wondering why it's needed to clean this stuff up, a lot of those bots are used for propaganda and meant to influence elections.
This is only a single example (but a prominent one), next to this there are tons of other reasons for bots to register (mainly to spread malware).

If you register and don't activate within 24hours or something, the registration should be void and you need to start over. Anything that exists that long without activating can easily be regarded as bogus.
The forum is publicly accessible, it doesn't have features to "like" or vote a post like facebook does. So you only need an account to post. Inactive users can be safely removed (in case of the few false positives, they'll just have to re-register).

I don't think this is extreme at all. Could be much harsher, imo, but then again, evageeks is probably not a primary target for these bots, but can still catch all sorts of filth.

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Re: Spring Cleaning 2019

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Postby MirrorUniverseAsuka » Thu Sep 05, 2019 8:18 am

Sounds good to me, the less irl election politics here the better.
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