There has been some concerns on how bumping can be abused to garner some extra reputation. I'm going to question the opposite. A scenario where not bumping can be abused.

Today of all days, a post was reported by Smoke Detector in Charcoal HQ and while it was obviously spam, it was deleted so fast by its author that it seems no one could kick in a spam flag. All good, eh?

Except undeletion doesn't bump a post, so said spammer can easily evade many eager eyes by undeleting it when we're not watching. The post will not be bumped, it wouldn't be caught by Smokey, and it will likely remain unnoticed for a long time — much longer than spam on AskUbuntu usually remains.

Notably, deletion has been used to stay safe from mod-hammer for longer than it should've been, so it's not far-fetched at all that a smarter spammer use it to spam even sites that are good at handling it.

While we're biting our fingernails and trying to find out whether this spammer was too stupid or too smart, we can also discuss what we could do about this "exploitable loophole". One user in Charcoal HQ proposed that undeletion show up in SE's real-time tab, which would be something Smokey watches.

Make it so

  • 1
    Worst case scenario would thus be a bunch of dormant, "deleted" spam posts which their owners could reactivate any time? That doesn't sound good, isn't there any measure in place against such?
    – Kyll
    Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 9:03
  • @Kyll the only measure I know of is if a bored user somehow lands on them, or if they're linked in the related questions. It's much harder in the answers case too.
    – M.A.R.
    Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 9:05
  • Note that SmokeDetector detects spam based on activity on the realtime tab, which is why undeletion needs to be bumped to the realtime tab. Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 9:55
  • There's also the list of "Recently Undeleted" in the 10k tools.
    – ale
    Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 11:30
  • @AlE. right! That could help in smaller sites providing that people watch that queue.
    – M.A.R.
    Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 11:32
  • You write "Except undeletion doesn't bump a post, so said spammer can easily evade many eager eyes by undeleting it when we're not watching. " <-- said spammer should have been caught the first time his post was deleted, so there should be no worry about him spamming again. Any future posts from him should go to a bin area, if anywhere at all
    – barlop
    Commented Jan 13, 2020 at 11:18

1 Answer 1


The solution is to bump on undeletion. Why invent a complicated new system?

Undeletion by the asker isn't only about spam, it's also about answers deleted through the low quality queue, which the answered can undelete at will. So a review system targeted at spam, seen by people without domain competence, wouldn't be very useful.

And, contrariwise, editing a deleted post should not bump: it only creates noise — people who can't see deleted posts see a thread bumped for no visible reason, and people who can see deleted posts see a thread bumped for no useful reason.

  • Good idea, but I think mods sometimes do some undeleting that needs to be done in a silent way.
    – M.A.R.
    Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 9:19
  • @TIPS They do? I've never encountered the need. Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 9:37
  • Shrug I think I heard it from a mod the other day. If they come to chat I'll ask them.
    – M.A.R.
    Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 9:42
  • 4
    I agree that undeletion should bump. I don't agree that editing a deleted post shouldn't bump, though; the audience for that signal is people who can vote to undelete. I've seen new users who get their first answers deleted by the community, actually come back and edit, and don't know how to proceed from there (and don't have the rep to flag, even if they figured out to try). 10k users who see those fixed posts can vote to undelete. Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 13:08
  • @MonicaCellio New users can flag their own posts, but it is indeed not obvious for them how to proceed. How often do 10k users spot this though? As a 10k user or mod I have enough to deal with that I don't pay attention to what happens in deleted posts. Users who get their first answer deleted can repost if they don't figure out how to aim for undeletion — it isn't obvious that undeletion even exists after all. Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 13:29
  • 4
    As a user of mostly smaller sites, I'm able to monitor changes on the front page, and I believe my fellow 10kers and/or mods do as well. And when I see "modified by" from a 1-rep user I pretty much always look to see what's going on. So I want the option to do so, and I don't think edits to deleted posts are so frequent that bumping them imposes a burden on most users. If you remove the "don't bump on deleted edit" part I'll happily upvote this because "bump on undeletion" is important. Commented Aug 4, 2016 at 14:06
  • I'm with Monica, also being a mod on a smaller site; that “noise” on a deleted post is often meaningful, especially to mods and those who might cast undelete votes on a deleted post after it was edited. I have to refrain from upvoting this answer due to the proposal to remove useful functionality. Commented Aug 5, 2016 at 4:21
  • @SevenSidedDie I am or have been a mod or 10ker on several small sites, and sorry, I don't watch.posts for potential undeletion, and I don't consider bumping a thread in a way that remains a mystery most users (most users see the bump but not the deleted post) to be “useful functionality”. Commented Aug 5, 2016 at 7:45
  • Still, as a rider on an unrelated proposal, it's unnecessary and mixes the message. Perhaps post it as its own [feature-request]? Commented Aug 5, 2016 at 14:18

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