Why have you closed the signature link being banned thread?

This one. Sitepoint, why is the thread closed?

probably because the thread had outplayed its usefulness and was beginning to go around in circles over the same ground, argumentatively

feel free to start another one, eh

:smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

Here’s my tip of the day.

If you close a thread, have the person who is closing it post that they are closing it and why.

That way we know who did it, and why.

So who closed it, and why?

It was probably closed because no matter what was said it was turned into an us vs them scenario.

SitePoint isn’t an us vs them situation. We try and work with the community to minimise spam and sig garbage but with such a large community it is a thankless task.

We also try and be as transparent as possible where it is appropriate to do so and if a thread was closed, a reason is usually given. If no reason is given then that is the decision of the closer.

If you see garbage - report it and we will deal with it.
Should sig links be there?
There would be complaints if they were and complaints if they werent so hey, Happy Christmas :slight_smile:

It seems the thread is not only closed but completely deleted now… at least I can no longer access it at all. Apparently we’ve touched a sensitive nerve at SP with that thread. I think removing, or restricting access to, an entire conversation like that is very poor form.

According to my email notifications Dan Grossman was the last person to respond to that thread, maybe it was Dan who closed it?

The most popular suggestion in that thread was, in fact, a compromise between your two extremes.

And every day my respect for SP drops a little more…

Well i guess that is a little shady, and removing the sig links… a little shady…

These 2 actions are to benefit sitepoint

I still get tons of info and i used to get intelligent responses, while i use the forum signature feature i never got any traffic or intrinsic seo value from it, and if i got pissed and left i really don’t think they would even notice.

So i guess i’ll still use the forum to post questions. If i get answers awesome, if not ill look elsewhere. The help i’ve gotten in the past has made me tons of $ in my projects.

So yeah its shady, but i still need help sometimes, and i hate the digital point forum, don’t fill like paying for an experts exchange membership, or a Webmaster World membership.

If you have other forums postem up i could use them.

Signature links have been no-follow and also non viewable to non-logged in users for a while now (can’t remember the date the change was made). imho it makes for a better forum as it discourages fluff postings by anyone who would try and use forum signatures for backlinks.

The problem is that making signature links non-follow and non-viewable is not enough of a deterrent, since there are still plenty of spam posts.

Since the other thread discussing this issue has vanished, you missed the excellent points made by 3Six where he explains that logged in users should not be treated as a lower class than every other type of visitor to the site by being forced to view tons of signature spam, while spiders and guests get to read the threads without that annoyance. Also, if you take a look at any of the forums, you can see that spammers either don’t know or don’t care that search engines can’t see their links, because there are plenty of people posting just to dump some links in the thread with the current setup.

Basically, the current settings aren’t working, and for some reason, Sitepoint staff doesn’t want to do something about it, or even allow discussions about the problem to exist. I’m not going to lose any sleep about it either way, but I don’t understand why Sitepoint moderators want to cover up the problem and stubbornly refuse to accept that it exists when a number of reasonable improvements were presented.

The mods normally deal with things quite quickly, I haven’t seen any fluff postings, most likely because the mods have acted on any fluff postings that have reported. The only thing that have missed is the fact that this thread is in the wrong forum, it should be in the Forum Support forum.

The only really workable solution would be to get rid of all signatures.

Which would also get rid of a significant fraction of those who are actually spending their time answering questions on the forum since the benefit to them of having their relevant signature links displayed would then be gone which would reduce the value of the forum to those able to provide answers.

The current system is probably the best compromise, it could be described as “The lesser of two evils”

You keep saying this, but no one else has chimed in with a post to concur. It’s clear that you would stop posting if you couldn’t include all of your links to your sites with every post, but you seem to be in the minority. Also, you have been around for quite a while and clearly contribute to the forums, so you wouldn’t be impacted anyway if the most popular option from the deleted poll was implemented (require a certain post count and account age to allow signature links).

I don’t really care what Sitepoint does about this issue, but your opinion does not seem to be held by many people no matter how many times you claim otherwise, and numerous people who post here regularly and contribute to this forum have repeatedly disagreed with you.

Take a look at the how to buy or sell forum, and tell me that there aren’t dozens of posts from a person who recently joined where all of their posts are nonsense with a link at the bottom. Do you think SKNX3 contributed a lot with his nonsensical one sentence posts to all of those threads yesterday, or did he sign up just to promote his site with a signature link?

Again, there is another option (which was already suggested multiple times, and is implemented in other forms on this very site): Allow signature links after a person has some number of posts and/or has been a member for some amount of time. Why would you just completely disregard this option?

I’ve already wasted enough time discussing this non-issue, but it is just mind-boggling that there are people who either deny that there is an issue in the face of clear evidence or ignore perfectly reasonable suggestions to make their point.

Bad idea, that would just encourage fluff posting as people would post anything to try and reach however many posts are needed.

Well, the absolutely ideal situation would be if quality contributors could keep their signatures … heck, even have those do-follow, if that in any way aids them. Everyone else should be categorically disallowed signatures.

It’s what I think now and what I said back in the thread that was closed. I think it’d be problematic not allowing positive contributors to this community signatures. Whether or not positive contributors use that option is beside the point. It’s about having the option.

Everything else is a compromise, obviously, one of which is currently in action on Sitepoint.

The problem, as I see it, is how to determine who is a quality poster and who isn’t? It’s impractical to manually select users in a forum of this size …

So what other options are there? Post count? Time limit? Completely removing signatures?

Deciding whether someone is a valuable contributor by determining their post count makes no sense.

Completely removing signatures and thus depriving valuable contributors of the right to self-promote doesn’t ring right to me as SP is a business and many of us are business people. Having respecable people take advantage of that little space below the post seems fine by me, and I can always turn it off in my settings, should I wish to completely abandon signatures from my view.

The time limit option seems the one that makes most sense to me. I’m not sure of its long-term effectiveness and I do not know whether Sitepoint has tried this method before and, if so, how well it fared in comparison.

A limit to n posts before signature links can be shown would cause an explosion of fluff posts.

Set the limit too low and people, who might even be getting paid to spam, won’t mind fluffing up the fora even more. Set the limit too high and many quality users who post quality but perhaps not so much quantity will be at a disadvantage.

The being a member for a certain amount of time … I would be interested in seeing how that worked if implemented, though I’m not sure whether or not this has been tested before on Sitepoint.

I was affected by that because it was implemented long before I joined this forum and has been in place ever since (except if it has accidentally got turned off when the admins were trying to implement some other change in which case it was reimplemented as soon as it was noticed to not be working the way it is supposed to). I had to make the required number of posts to this forum before I could add a signature to my posts just like everyone else.

Your continuing to suggest that the forum implement something that has already been in place for at least the past six years and which was found to not be working well enough - which is why hiding the sigs from the search engines completely was implemented on top of the post count requirements - isn’t going to achieve anything.

Your suggestion was already in place by 2004 to my personal knowledge and was probably in place long before that so yes your suggestion has been listened to and someone went way back in time and implemented it many years ago.

Newcomers to these forums have to make a certain number of posts to be able to specify any links at all. They then have to make so many more posts before they can add a signature to their posts. Those links are then all nofollow until a further number of posts have been made. Almost all of the spammers have been banned long before they reach that number of posts. At no point are the signatures ever visible to search engines and so only those that are relevant are ever going to achieve anything by being there.

When things were changed to make all sigs invisible to the search engines there were a whole heap of complaints and a lot of members left the forum (mostly those who misunderstand what sig links are for and who thought that having them visible to search engines actually makes a difference - which it doesn’t).

By having the sig links visible to logged in members the forum allows the links to be used for their intended purpose of providing access to further information on related subjects that both provides further assistance to those who asked for help as well as providing more info to help determine the accuracy of the information provided.

There is nothing that can be done to prevent people misusing the sig links and placing meaningless links there because any of the sorts of link that the forum rules allow to be there could potentially be relevant to at least some readers (even if only to provide some background to who the person is). Anything that is clearly misusing the sig links is against the forum rules.

I think many forums closed the signature link being banned thread

jamiellee 9 posts
hydar 8 posts, joined this month
paleduck 2 posts, joined this month
W3BusinessAdv 1 post, joined this month

Clearly you are mistaken.

All of those posts are sig link spam, all of them are from the same thread.
I appreciate sig links are invisible to search engines, but obviously that is not enough. In addition to this measure, I would like to see signature links restricted to accounts that are 30 days old and have 30 posts. All of this was mentioned in the previous discussion on this matter.