spam-removal

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Spam Removal

Unfortunately not everyone plays nice on the microformats wiki, and from time to time a misguided individual (or bot) may edit pages and add unrelated content, typically advertisements with links, sometimes hidden, and sometimes they may even delete or otherwise damage the existing content.

Whether or not you have admin privileges, you can help fight this spam.

The fastest / best way to remove spam is to get in the irc channel, and see if you can alert an admin by mentioning "adminhelp", or even ask one of the admins you see in the channel by name. Admins can block the spammer immediately to prevent further damage from that login, as well as one-click rollback their changes.

If there are no admins about, please remove the links and mention “spam” in summary.

Block

For admins only.

  1. Start with http://microformats.org/wiki/Special:Recentchanges
  2. click the "block" link next to one of the changes from a spammer
  3. enter "infinite" for the Expiry
  4. and something like "spammer" for the Reason
  5. Click "Block this user"
  6. Go back to http://microformats.org/wiki/Special:Recentchanges to verify that your block took effect, and look for any other spammers to block

Rollback

For admins only.

  1. Start with http://microformats.org/wiki/Special:Recentchanges
  2. Apple/command/control-click the (diff) link next to each change that a spammer has done to open new tabs for each problem. Only once per page though - you don't need to click diff for each change for a single page.
  3. Now on that diff page there are three possibilities:
    1. There is a [rollback] link in the top right - if so, click it, you're done.
    2. There is no [rollback] link, typically because someone else has changed the page after the spammer. In that case, click the history link near the top left and then click the radio button in the left column of radio buttons that corresponds to the last version before the spammer started editing and click "Compare selected versions". You should see no changes (i.e. some other microformats community member successfully removed the spam). If you see any other changes, (like accidental removal of content), the easiest thing to do is to go back to the history page, then click on the dated link of the last stable version, then edit, note the warning about editing an older version, then save.
    3. Something goes wrong when you click the (diff) link and you don't get the typical diff page. You get some other plain typically unstyled HTML. i've only seen this a few times and it usually means the wiki page was really messed up in some odd way. In this scenario you also have to go back to recent changes, click the (hist) link instead of the (diff) link next to the errant change, and then just like the second part of the previous tip, click on the dated link of the last stable version, then edit, note the warning, then save.
    4. There is a 4th possibility, when a spammer creates a new page, in that case you simply Delete it, with the reason given as spam.
  4. In any case, when you're done repairing that page, close the tab, and repair the next one. In the typical case where you catch the spam nearly immediately and no-one has changed the page, you can click the [rollback] link, then close the tab, in quite rapid succession, often undoing a recent spam attack on a number of pages in under a minute.
  5. Finally you may want to go back to http://microformats.org/wiki/Special:Recentchanges and verify that you repaired the damage.
spam-removal was last modified: Sunday, February 21st, 2010

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