I sent the following abuse complaint just now. (This is probably only interesting to folks who read certain comic feeds and like clicking on the comments link to see what other LJ users are saying about the comic.)
I enjoy reading syndicated feeds and usually having comments on them is a good thing, because I can chat with other users who read the same feed. However, user “jassalol” has figured out a loophole in this system – it is basically a community with no maintainer and he feels he has the “right” to post whatever he wants in it.
This occurs daily across several feeds. By his admission (check his userinfo) he posts “BOOBIES!!” *daily* on on apod, softerworldfeed, questionablerss, getfuzzy_comic2, pb_fellowship, sinfestfeed, someposifeed, vgc, xkcd_rss, or pennyarcaderss. Almost every day, multiple people post saying that they are upset with this behavior, causing a drama storm that totally drowns out relevant, meaningful comments. On days when there is no protest, “jassalol” will take a previous protest comment and *reply to himself* with it, causing even more drama.
This is clearly “comment spam” by any reasonable definition. It is clearly not relevant to the topic of the community – those of us who read the syndicated comments just want to discuss the content of the feed (usually comments) and this inappropriate/off-topic consistent, recurring comment takes away from that experience.
As a paid user (permanent since 2001) I feel angry that jassalol is consuming way more than his fair share of resources (including storage space for the inappropriate comments and drama, bandwidth and server resources to serve them.) I’m also concerned about the damage to LJ’s reputation because of this loophole – it gives the impression that LJ maintainers are asleep at the switch and because the community has no maintainer, there is no way to police the inappropriate comments. jassalol obviously feels that he has the “right” to post whatever he wants, in multiple communities, multiple times a day. A single unwanted comment, or a dozen or two, could be overlooked, but multiple times daily over a year and a half makes it pretty clear that the user is a spammer.
I am not sure what the best solution to the “comments on syn feeds are uncontrolled and cannot be marked inappropriate” problem is, but I’m pretty sure the best solution to *this* current problem is to ban jassalol from posting to those communities which he has clearly abused. He obviously intends to keep abusing them until he is stopped. If you don’t have the appropriate interface to ban him from those communities, please just warn him to stop and let him know that his membership can be revoked for abusing the terms of service. You or other abuse team members may be able to think of a better solution; if so, great.
Thanks for your time.
I am limiting this list of inappropriate comments to incidents that have happened in the last week or so, on only the communities I actually read (3 of the 10 or so affected). If this is not enough to establish a trend of repeated abuse, please browse the other synfeeds listed above, going back a year and a half in some cases.
Also note that on most of these, jassalol has replied to himself with a recycled complaining comment–most likely because other readers have *tried* to just leave it alone and not respond, and jassalol *wants* more attention and more drama.
Of course I could have just submitted the complaint anonymously and left it at that, but I decided to post this to my own journal as well. I feel strongly that spammers should not be allowed to trash things that I like, and I’m not afraid to tell them and others how I feel. Anyone else who feels strongly that such behavior is inappropriate is encouraged to submit an abuse complaint as well.