45

W3Schools is a garbage web site, designed to rank high in search engines in order to show people ads. The site demonstrates that the quality of the actual content is entirely secondary to that goal. Its PHP MySQL tutorial contains a SQL injection hole to this day, at least since 2006. It is likely responsible for many, if not most, of the tens of thousands ...


42

Since about 8 hours ago. One of our ever-vigilant devs came across it, and interpreted it as a lmgtfy-like bit of nonsense. I can understand why - the use of it has always been a mix of honestly helpful folks offering a good resource to those struggling to ask a good question, and lazy wags slapping in bare URLs on posts whose authors aren't suitably ...


31

Based on usage here are the last 12 attempts to use the link whathaveyoutried.com as a comment while the blacklist was enabled: What have you tried?](http://whathaveyoutried.com) Also, is it so hard to do a simple Google seach What have you tried? http://www.whathaveyoutried.com/ whathaveyoutried ? What have you tried? whathaveyoutried.com What ...


19

Automated blocking or rewriting is probably never going to happen; as Jeff notes, that gets quite expensive. But there's some educational value in limited blocking of specific, popular shorteners. We've been trying this out on Stack Overflow for a few months now, and the results have generally been positive. So I've blocked a few common shorteners network-...


18

I cannot upvote Shog's answer as I disagree with the way this has been done, especially after the previous question asking for this got downvoted to oblivion. However, I agree with the point that the only use for the following comment is to link a questioner to a valuable resource: What have you tried? I've also seen this before, which I find even more ...


18

I disagree: links and their content should be judged on a base-by-base case. If the linked-to information is good and the answer containing the link is valid/useful, then why discourage it? If the answer is bad or if the linked-to content is bad, then the answer deserves all the downvotes it will get. Selecting a single bad source of information on the ...


16

The problem with a blacklist on spam content is that it presents an immediate warning to a spammer that their post will not be accepted. This happens at the time that they're actively posting, so they know their spam didn't go through and they then try combinations until it does. As a moderator, I've seen this happen many times. ArtOfCode points out the ...


15

That just becomes a game of whack-a-mole with permutations and regular expressions. As noted in comments, spammers very quickly adapt to changes in the blacklist. Keto, for instance, becomes: K3to Ke10 K3t0 ... and so on. Even with a lot of optimization, each entry in the spam bucket / bad word / bin list causes a little more work to be done anytime ...


11

This is roughly what happens: See also: What can I do when getting "We are no longer accepting questions/answers from this account"?


11

No, there is no such blacklist. Don't create new accounts. Being serially voted on is not your problem unless you created a sock puppet specifically to commit vote fraud or if you are part of a voting ring; it is normal that such votes get reversed. See What is serial voting and how does it affect me.


11

Jarrod whipped this up last night. Check it out: That's the first blacklist entry to have custom guidance added. We'll add more as needed.


10

Trivia: there already exists a big ol' pile of spammy words defined within the system that block new users from posting if they make up a significant portion of a post. It blocks about 10 posts a day on Ask Ubuntu alone. 90% of the authors then go on to tweak their posts until something goes through, at which point they get deleted. It works ok for purely ...


10

questions with such meaningless titles are often low-scoring and closed Cool. If there's a good question hiding under that ugly hat, anyone - anyone - can edit to improve it. But otherwise, it's the equivalent of walking around with a great big "Kick Me!" sign on you, and goodness knows we're the type to oblige around here. As Nicol notes, straight-up ...


10

As ArchiveTeam says, URL shorteners are a ticking bomb in the WWW. An answer or question linking an URL shortener has a way lower value than it would have if it contained the full URL. It's at risk of losing meaning at any moment and, consistently with the practice to discourage link-only answers because the link target might vary, such URLs should be ...


10

I've made this check a bit less greedy; your comment should go through now.


7

I agree that it's impossible to maintain a canonical black-list of URL shortener services. Users will find a way around it, if they wish. However... I suspect only 5-10% of the users who use short URLs do so in a malicious way. The majority simply think they are superior to normal links (for whatever reason) and might even be surprised to discover we don't ...


7

Think back to a time when you walked into an empty department store you've never been to before, one that you're not familiar with. The only customer in the store is you, and the only clerk in the store looks exactly like the stereotypical loser who sits behind the counter, chewing gum and doing her nails, or talking on the phone to his friend about how the ...


7

Keyword blacklists, IP blocks, and similar preventative measures will never keep up with the tenacity of spammers. And Smoke Detector works well. Really well. I hardly see spam flags anymore, and I pop onto my site a lot throughout the day for quick flag checks. Just flag the post as spam. Don't edit it, don't downvote it, don't use another flag. Flag ...


6

I think this could be done in a pretty safe way, avoiding all the potential issues that make the current blacklist so dangerous. Post body blacklists should be limited to pure URLs (only the domain part), no fancy regex or something like that. If a mod tries to add a blacklist rule, a collateral damage query is run that would list all existing users (for ...


5

Not an answer to the question, but I think it's important: what if the domain expires? It's been around for almost 4 years; next expiry is in December. Do we need to cross our fingers and hope the registrant (actually the blog owner; same day the article was posted) renews the domain? Otherwise it might no longer be a nice redirect to a helpful blogpost at ...


5

This has been implemented at some point, silently:


4

This is not a bug. The question you linked to explains why the ban is in place. You've just stumbled across one of the very few questions that legitimately demand that word be in the title. Bear in mind that people come across questions only partly due to the title. Google (and presumably the SE search algorithms) will search the entirety of the page. So ...


4

Having been a long-time user of w3schools (which I like especially for the "Try it yourself" editor - very useful). I came across the w3fools site. So here are a few gripes about that: 1) They don't provide any contact information to correct errors on their own site (ok I can tweet them - but do I really need to open a twitter account just for that?). 2) ...


4

Well, the Shog9 has spoken and it has been done. How's that for authority? It will be shipped in the next build.


4

Years later, this is status-completed. At least on SO. No other sites have the ban, not even the localized SO sites (Japanese, Russian, Portuguese, Spanish). The solution is not retroactive, so there are still many posts that have these link shorteners (but refuse your edits unless you remove them). I have set out to remove them as described in Removing ...


3

A while ago we changed the help filter to allow help in a handful of cases. The price for fewer false positives in more false negatives, so this question slipped through,


3

Personally I agree that those titles are annoying, even more so when it also appears on the first, middle and last paragraph of the question; it makes me want to not answer it just to spite them. However, I think it would be better to educate than to prevent; we could provide suggestions on how a question can be improved, based on certain heuristics. E.g. ...


3

I totally agree that a spam filter should be implemented, but as far as I can tell, it's not practical. Reason 1 Do you still remember the badly-received title word filter on Stack Overflow? Well, it worked fine by blocking the word "problem" from question titles. However, people seemed not to be wording better, but instead used blatant workarounds like ...


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