You read that right. I think del.icio.us spammers are rude and despicable. I’m pretty much married to del.icio.us at this point, and not likely to change to a new service (read: please don’t evangelize your favorite del.icio.us alternative), so I’m hoping that del.icio.us will make some strides in helping users filter out the spam.
There is, of course, the antisocial feature, which allows you to eliminate certain users from certain views but, to my knowledge, it’s of no use when you just grab the RSS feeds. For instance, I’m a big user of the feed for the ‘business‘ tag. These clowns have been peeing in my hottub and I don’t like it. And that’s not even all of them–just the ones I tagged real quick. Judging from the timing and the names of the junk they’re throwing into the ‘business’ tag, it’s probably some kind of ‘bot or something.
I’m not sure how del.icio.us can solve this, but I don’t like it when people complain to me but don’t offer alternatives, so I won’t do that. Here are a few potential solutions from a quick one-man, non-geek brainstorm:
- Implement a Craigslist-style "mark this as spam" flag. Any user with a certain percentage of their posts flagged as spam, or an absolute number flagged as spam within a certain short timeframe, would be suspended for a week or two. Not a big deal, since accounts are so easy to set up, but it would provide a deterrent.
- Another option might be to expand the antisocial feature so that when I subscribe to feeds, I don’t see anything from the users I have in my antisocial filter.
- A third option might be allowing users to flip a switch in their accounts that prevent them from seeing other users who’ve had a certain percentage of bookmarks as spam (like #1).
I don’t know what the “right” solution is, but I’m pretty sure that leaving things the way they are isn’t a good strategy. I don’t want to see del.icio.us change too much. The ease of setting up a new account is awesome, but there’s gotta be a way to systematically (and organically) weed out spammers.