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It is that time of the day again. Time now is 21:00 CT. There is one particular spam post which occurs exactly around this time every day. The most annoying thing is, it happens on the same answer by the same user and it introduces vandalism. For those who have not seen it, it is this particular post. The answer to which the suggested edit always occurs is this one.

Is there a way to reject the suggested edits or lock a post after repeated attempts of suggested edits on a particular post is rejected?

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EDIT 7/2/2014

Well, it occurred again today. Is it possible to keep the post locked, may be?

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Wow, that's been going on forever. Supposedly users are banned at the IP level if their edits are rejected too much. I can't tell if these were all submitted by the same IP or not, and there's no way to manually ban them anyway, so I tried locking the post for a week to see what happens. I'll try to keep an eye out to see if it starts happening on another post; let me know if you see anything

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    Thanks. I will look out for it and notify in case something suspicious happens again. :) – Ramesh Jun 13 '14 at 15:04
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This was a 'snow shoe' spammer, and they often target very short posts because they think folks are less likely to notice the edits (yes, they're that dumb). I dug into our live DB and fetched the origins of edits rejected for spam / vandalism to that post, and blocked about 50 some networks from doing it in the future.

The system normally does this without intervention from us, however some spammers use 'snow shoes' (distributing their presence to avoid the system) that are quite large, so we have to help it along from time to time.

If this happens again, you can contact us directly to let us know, and we'll run a query and shut them up.

  • That's very appreciated, thanks! – terdon Jul 3 '14 at 10:17
  • Just out of curiosity, where any of those rejects repeat offenders or were they all unique IPs? – Jason C Jul 12 '14 at 17:10
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    @JasonC When you get to the scale these people were operating at, you're looking more at networks instead of individual addresses. It was about 15 distinct networks, a mix of /20s and /24s. – Tim Post Jul 13 '14 at 4:25
  • Huh, what a weird thing to do. You'd think they'd at least do something evil, like add 1 to every number or change every "their" to "they're". – Jason C Jul 13 '14 at 6:27
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There is a protection in place that silently rejects suggested edits that completely rewrite a post. However it only triggers on posts that are sufficiently long, because the detection of “completely rewriting” is unreliable on posts that are too short to begin with. I don't remember the exact threshold value.

I've edited I want to use a bluetooth keyboard during initram (by adding material from comments), which puts this one over the threshold. So even if the spammer finds a new botnet, they won't be able to annoy us with that particular post.

  • earlier Briam also edited the post and we hoped that the attacker wouldn't target the post. However, even after editing the post, the vandalism occured. However, only time when this did not occur was when the post was completely locked. – Ramesh Jul 5 '14 at 13:26
  • @Ramesh That edit didn't change anything. Mine did because it brought the post above the threshold. – Gilles Jul 5 '14 at 13:36
  • ok. I failed to notice it. Anyways, thanks for adding more contents. I will keep a look for it in future if it occurs :) – Ramesh Jul 5 '14 at 13:37
  • Oi! I've been known to suggest edits which completely rewrite posts. They've been accepted too. – TRiG Jul 9 '14 at 23:16
  • @TRiG I think the restriction is only for anonymous edits. Also most of your rewrites actually preserve a few bits and pieces here and there that allow the by word diff algorithm to identify them as derivatives even if it is a complete makeover. – Caleb Jul 12 '14 at 9:21

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