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I hear about spam bots a lot here, and how they spam here, however is the simplest solution to most spam bots just to require that all new users have to enter a CAPTCHA when registering? Or at least for them to have to do so before posting until they get to a certain rep (though this might be a little bit extreme)?

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this already in place, requiring a captcha for registration? The tricky part is anonymous 'guest' posting without a registration, and that's just part of the system. (I think they still have to complete a captcha to post). Many captcha systems have been 'figured out' by bots, too, which makes it more difficult. – Thomas Ward Oct 1 '15 at 12:57
  • @ThomasW.: I don't know, it was a long time ago when I registered and I don't remember any such feature. Also I heard that they disabled anonymous posting here due to spamming, is that not correct? – user364819 Oct 1 '15 at 13:02
  • I just tested this, and anonymous posting is disabled. But Registration is outside the purview of Ask Ubuntu - it's handled in the StackExchange core. I don't see a captcha required here, but also consider SSO exists, and bypasses captcha registration requirements (Google accounts are therefore usable in SSO). Adding a captcha will only solve for manual registrations, not SSO-based registrations. – Thomas Ward Oct 1 '15 at 13:04
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We actually show Captchas on sign up under certain conditions.

That being said, I'm not sure inconveniencing every individual attempting to sign up is our best approach to combat spam right now:

  • Captchas wouldn't necessarily keep all the spam out (if only because you can pay humans to work around them), so we can't rely only on Captchas.
  • Captchas would inconvenience every single user attempting to sign up (whereas most of them are not spammers).

We do have other ideas though. No promises on when we can start working on them, though.

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