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We in the C# chat room are having an issue with people abusing stars. When someone starts spam-starring messages, we cancel the stars, but this gives the user their stars back, enabling them to spam us with more stars.

I think that stars should not be gotten back, so that someone who spams with stars can't use more than the daily limit.

Another possible solution I thought of is requiring the user to wait 15 or so seconds between stars. Even though that wouldn't stop the spam, it would make it more manageable.

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marked as duplicate by ben is uǝq backwards, Martijn Pieters, Josh Crozier, hims056, Emrakul Mar 25 at 4:39

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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Of all the things that could be abused on the site, it's chat stars... Someone must be having way too much time on their hands... –  Mysticial Aug 2 '12 at 20:12
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Sounds like this is the way it should work –  Pëkka Aug 2 '12 at 20:13
    
@Mysticial: Unfortunately, flags do too sometimes. –  Kendall Frey Aug 2 '12 at 20:16
    
Unfortunately stars have no context, especially canceled ones. Which means you don't get much out of flagging the chatter. –  Lee Louviere Aug 2 '12 at 20:18
    
I think it would be nice for stars added to have a hidden chat message attached. So you could flag that message. –  Lee Louviere Aug 2 '12 at 20:19
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@JonEricson "You can star a maximum of 20 messages per room per day." -the chat FAQ (bold text is original) –  Pops Aug 2 '12 at 20:21
    
@benisuǝqbackwards Not a dupe; that one says nothing about star-cancelling. –  michaelb958 Mar 25 at 1:46
    
They're both requests to rate-limit the number of stars people can use in a day somehow @michael. I don't think they're different at all. They ask for what might be different reasons but that makes the argument for the feature request being completed better. Theoretically, there should be an answer to the other question that states this use-case. –  ben is uǝq backwards Mar 25 at 7:17

1 Answer 1

Seems to me that this is a super-edge case. (Out of the millions of people who use Stack Exchange, how many use chat? How many use the C# chatroom specifically? How many of them care about stars?) As such, I think the solution involves making the user stop — by mod if necessary — not changing the code for the chat starring system.

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2  
But it's such a logical change. –  Lee Louviere Aug 2 '12 at 20:22
    
How can we get them to stop, if we don't do anything? –  Kendall Frey Aug 2 '12 at 20:24
    
@KendallFrey Request mod attention? (Which I daresay you've already done, by asking here.) Are 20 stars a day even that disruptive? I suspect that if you ignore the star spammer, he'll just go away. You may be playing into his hand by trying to clean up after him and showing him that you're annoyed... troll psychology is weird. (Disclaimer: I never visit the C# room, so I don't know how you use your star list or the personalities of anyone involved.) –  Pops Aug 2 '12 at 20:27
    
But the thing is that cancelling a star effectively adds one to the 20 the user has. Meaning he has virtually unlimited stars. How is that not a loophole that needs to be fixed? –  Pëkka Aug 2 '12 at 20:29
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It's more than 20 stars a day. It's 20 stars in about 1 minute, and after we cancel the stars, the person gets them back and later goes on another rampage. And we don't want to leave 20 random messages in the sidebar. –  Kendall Frey Aug 2 '12 at 20:29
    
@Pekka It is sort of consistent with the rest of the site, though. If posts you downvoted get deleted, you essentially get those votes back (which is how some people cast more than 40 votes in a day). –  jadarnel27 Aug 2 '12 at 20:30
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@jadarnel but in this case, it's your own abuse that increases your quota, instead of other people's bad content like in your example. –  Pëkka Aug 2 '12 at 20:31
    
Again, you're assuming that you need to cancel the stars in the first place. If you don't, then the guy will leave after the one minute is up, and you can continue on in peace. I suspect that if you all just ignore him, he'll get bored and quit the room for good after a day or two, and then a room owner can go into the transcript and clean up stars from the past two days. Remember: 1) trolls want attention, and 2) telling a troll that he's being bad and that you disapprove does count as giving him attention. –  Pops Aug 2 '12 at 20:34
    
@Pop you have a point, but still. Abusing a feature shouldn't increase your quota for that feature. That's a bug. –  Pëkka Aug 2 '12 at 20:42
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@Pekka how would you tell the difference between someone who's abusing the system and someone who's getting stars refunded legitimately? –  Pops Aug 2 '12 at 20:44
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@Pop is there such a case as a legit refund of a star? (I'm really asking. I'm not that familiar with chat these days.) –  Pëkka Aug 2 '12 at 20:45
    
For the few inappropriate stars by a non-abuser that are cancelled, it shouldn't make much of a difference. –  Kendall Frey Aug 2 '12 at 20:48
    
@Pekka I remember balpha saying once that the original purpose of the star list was to give team members a way to sort pending code changes by priority. Once implementation was complete, the stars for that feature would get canceled. –  Pops Aug 2 '12 at 20:57

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