Darth Wong wrote:There is absolutely no logical reason why a human spammer would be unable to sign up if a human who intends to participate normally can sign up.
I got the impression from an earlier post that "brf" was saying to create Q&A questions specific to your group's audience. Example: for an online-gaming forum, a spammer is unlikely to know some terms found in World of Warcraft.
Ahhhh, I see what you're talking about. Still, even that wouldn't stop everybody. My most recent human spammer was a guy who signed up on my sci-fi board in order to drum up traffic for his own website, which also involved sci-fi.
Besides, since I run a sci-fi board, it seems incredibly geeky to me to put a genre-specific question in the registration page. If the registration page asked "What is the name of Senator Amidala's home planet", it would stop anyone who doesn't know Star Wars, but it would also set off everybody's Geek-O-Meter
I think that's a pretty good idea for a very specific, focused forum. It could make it difficult for spammers to join. But, for less-specific forums (do-it-yourself auto repair; stay-at-home mom's) it's not as possible.
There's also the problem of forums which have more than one focus. For example, my own forum is "science and sci-fi", which are sort of related but not identical. Someone could be interested in science and yet have no idea who Senator Amidala is, for example.
It's kind of like the "crazy maths" captcha. The example is for a forum intended to be used by engineers or physicists. A lot of us aren't going to be able to figure out that kind of math. But, it could be useful for the average forum. Simple math can be generated, but not as easily screen-scraped because it's a Latex-generated image.
I don't think there's a one-size-fits-all solution. Probably 2-3 plug ins are needed (including the use of at least one collaborative service like Akismet, Spam Karma II, Spam Assassin, Bot Scout, Stop Forum Spam. Those are the ones I've seen mentioned in this thread. But, I'm not personally familiar with any.).
Every forum's different.