2011-11-03 21:10 PDT

On the Zotero homepage where it shows picture of New Zotero People there is an offensive picture containing a man's penis on a woman's face. (

Do we have any standards of conduct here? I've been looking for a reference management site for my research group but I really cannot recommend Zotero if this is would go on.
  • There has been an ongoing problem with spam accounts, which the admins have generally managed to delete promptly. This is the first I've heard of such offensive user pictures; I can say that they are not a problem in general, but rather a disturbing turn in the long struggle to keep spam accounts out of the system.

    Hopefully the web admin will be able to implement some new anti-spam measures.
  • it's been particularly bad lately - I don't see the pictures because I'm rarely on the homepage, but it feels like we've had at least one spam account posting here every day - today it's been 4 or so? Admins are fast - I've rarely seen anything up for more than 30 mins - Mr. 555 has been removed already, for example.
    There are also "Report Abuse" links on every profile page.
    Please do use them when you see something - it doesn't need to be offensive. Anything that's clearly a spam account should be reported, even if it's just spam for cheap software.

    Given how little they actually post - it's usually max 4 posts - I wonder if those are human spammers? In that case manually deleting and banning is the only remedy there is. Any word-based filters are a) useless as they're easy to circumvent and b) may annoy regular users who study something with spam-type words (e.g. weight loss) in it.
  • I don't know the numbers, but it sure seems like spam accounts are on the rise. Perhaps we could add a new verification system?

    A particularly appropriate one would be to identify a piece of a citation-- give a citation in randomly-selected citation style, and the person needs to give the author, year, journal or something. It seems unlikely spammers will build a citation parser just to crack our system-- and the input data could come from public Zotero libraries, or any large collection of citation data we might have on hand.
  • Spammers do normal working hours, I guess. I only rarely see the stuff, but my viewing hours are mostly in the evening US time.

    An off-the-shelf anti-idiot solution is probably best, but I'll pile on after ajlyon and suggest a disambiguation puzzle ...
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