Hi, all. Just a heads up - I have been seeing a rash of spam members joining the site over the last few weeks (it's also impacting my Facebook group). I have an aggressive spam filter on this site that cost hundreds of dollars per year to maintain, but, even so, spam can flare up at times and slip past the filters. Now seems to be one of those times. This morning I awoke to four new spam members on the site, affiliated with porn sites in Korea. They've been deleted and banned, and those IP addresses and emails have been permanently blocked. I have to do this part manually, one by one, for each person who passed through the automatic filters. Most spam comes in from Asia and India, overnight when I am sleeping and unable to immediately remove it.
I only point this out, so that you don't overreact if you see some "unusual" headshots in the list of members! I typically come into the site every morning around 10 am my time to sweep it clean of spam, but I can't do this at the exact same time every day, and some of you in other countries may see the spam before I do. I had a very disappointing reaction from a member of my Facebook group this week about spam she had seen there (she left the group with big public fanfare). The spam in question was minimal IMO: two non-cookie videos, posted while I was sleeping, with harmless content.
This all being said, I want to set proper expectations here on this site: (1) some amount of spam is going to happen no matter what I do; (2) an increase in spam is usually an indication that the area being spammed is popular and growing (that latter part is good); (3) trust me that I will clean up spam as soon as I see it; (4) if you see it before me, PM me or email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I will perhaps see it sooner; and (5) please understand that I will do whatever I can to keep the site clean. If the problem persists, I'll check in with the company that provides my spam filtering service, but I am going to see if it settles down first - as it usually comes in waves.
Thanks for your understanding and patience.