Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

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pennycsf
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Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

Post by pennycsf » Sun May 05, 2019 6:02 pm

I wonder if there is any way to mark a post as visible only to the Original Poster and administrators?

The reason I ask is that I use the StopForumSpam extension on my phpBB forum, and I was watching a newly registered member whose IP address is Vietnam. As my board is for Anglophones in France touched by cancer this was enough to make me suspicious.

After a few days the "user" copied a complete post made months ago, and posted this as a new post. The original post was from the spouse of a cancer sufferer, with a lot of specific details of the illness, and so was complete lies when posted by the new "user".

I cannot report this "user" as a spammer on StopForumSpam until they actually post a spamming link or other spam, yet I cannot leave the post open to be viewed because the post is not a simple expression of opinion, but a detailed description of a very difficult medical/family situation purporting to come from a sufferer, which is completely false. Other forum members, a pretty committed and caring community, are inspired to respond with suggestions, advice, sympathy, etc - all of it wasted in this case!

One member of StopForumSpam suggests that some software allows a post to be marked to be viewed only by the Op and admins, thereby allowing the "user" time to add real spam, but I can't see a way to do this in phpBB.

As always, any help would be appreciated!
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Re: Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

Post by Lady_G » Sun May 05, 2019 7:26 pm

From your description, there is a new member posting false information.

Modifying phpBB permissions is not trivial. You should not change permissions based on a single member that could possibly be a spammer.

As a moderator, you are able to "soft-delete" posts. Look for an "x" in the top-right corner of the post.

Click on "x" and provide a reason to delete the post. Do not check the "Delete permanently" box.

The post will be visible to moderators, but not your members. All of the post information is retained and will appear inline with the topic - but with a "Display this post" link to expand the content.

===============
This does not answer your question directly, as the possible spammer will not be able to see this post.

Consider: If only the spammer and an administrator can see this post, consider the effect on the discussion when other members cannot see this information. It is the same as "soft-deleting" the post.

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Re: Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

Post by KevC » Sun May 05, 2019 8:01 pm

You can't do that with standard permissions but you I think you can with this extension
https://www.phpbb.com/customise/db/exte ... erstopics/

Some spambots are clever enough to copy old topics, we see the same on here, so they appear to be genuine posts.
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pennycsf
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Re: Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

Post by pennycsf » Sun May 05, 2019 9:48 pm

@KevC
I think that my question should have been "is it possible to restrict posts from a specific 'user' so that only the 'user' and admins can see the posts.

I realise this must be difficult, and the only reason is to allow a suspected "lurker" time to add enough evidence to definitively identify as a spammer on the StopForumSpam database - probably not a compelling enough reason to modify phpBB or add an extension.

@Lady_G
Consider: If only the spammer and an administrator can see this post, consider the effect on the discussion when other members cannot see this information.
This is the whole point - I do not want other members to see this false post - I want to wait until they provide enough information to report them as spammers to StopForumSpam, which has very specific rules as to what qualifies as evidence of spam!
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Lumpy Burgertushie
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Re: Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

Post by Lumpy Burgertushie » Sun May 05, 2019 10:14 pm

the best thing to do is just delete them/ban them etc.
don't worry about reporting human spammers as they will just come back with a new name/email/IP etc. etc.

if you think they are spam bots then get a good question and answer for registering and you can stop pretty much all of them.


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Re: Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

Post by KevC » Mon May 06, 2019 11:06 am

Spammers are just part of running any site that has registration. There is no hard and fast way to stop it but you can do certain things like having robust registration and using the newly registered users group and being vigilant.

The point of that bot would have been to hope the post was accepted, lie dormant and then return several days, weeks or even months later and edit the post to include spam links to whatever they're selling.
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Re: Restrict views of post to admin and Original Poster?

Post by Lady_G » Mon May 06, 2019 9:26 pm

@pennycsf - Both Lumpy Burgertushie and KevC are providing expert advice.

Removal of your spammer and reporting him to StopForumSpam will simply result in another spammer taking his place. It is a continuous battle that must be managed quickly and decisively.

- The StopForumSpam extension will block many registration attempts, but several will get through and you must use additional methods to block them.

The additional methods are (mentioned in the 2 posts above):

- Provide a registration Question and Answer that is difficult for a bot to understand.

- Force all new members to have their first post held for review by a forum moderator. The posts will appear in the Moderator Control Panel where you can approve / disapprove / ban as you wish. (This is the use of the newly registered users group mentioned by KevC)

The last step requires a human moderator, which is your best defense to prevent spammers from appearing in your forum.

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