Why does Discourse ask us to approve posts?


I notice that some posts require approval on Discourse. Is this due to the status of a new user or some other reason/config setting?


I’m going to ask our consultant jay pfaffman to start watching the moderators forum and chime in.


A good way to do that is to @mention @pfaffman so that I get a notification. :wink:

A number of things can trigger moderation. I believe that there’s usually an indicator about what triggered it. The image shows only that some posts need approval, not the posts themselves, so I can’t quite tell.

If you look at https://ask.cyberinfrastructure.org/admin/logs/staff_action_logs you can see that a couple posts were because “New user typed too fast” and that @jma approved them.

There is a site setting min first post typing time that is currently at the default 3000 milliseconds. The notion is that if someone is able to post in 3 seconds, the likelihood that they are a bot is high. You can reduce that setting to a lower number (at the risk of not stopping actual spam).


Thanks @pfaffman! :slight_smile:

Given the length of the first posts I see, I’m guessing that either they go through a new keyboard every week… or they may have typed it elsewhere and copy/pasted it into the post?


Copy-paste is the usual guess. And this limit applies only to the very first post. It’s hard to imagine that a first-time user could manage to start a message, paste, and post in 3 seconds. It could be that the timer is somehow wrong.

Like locks and car alarms, anything else that’s designed to make life worse for bad people, also makes it worse for good people.