How to handle the spam/pending queues

Cross-posting this so that it’s available to all that may have a benefit from it:

Since this is a frustration for me, I think we need some guidelines on -how- the queues need to be handled, as the current approach leads to a lot of missed false positives (and my poor ticker can’t take that at my age), as such, here is (in my opinion) a good way to work through the queues:

Is someone else already looking into the queues?

Look in #forums, because of the nature of the queues unspam/unarchive/approve toggle format, this is paramount to avoid undoing actions, never handle the queue without first checking if someone is already doing it, and if no-one is, declare it in the channel for others to know.

The Spam Queue

The spam queue can have false positives, legitimate posts caught accidentally by Akismet, and we need to save them. This bit sucks right now, we know, but you need to check every page (even if we can’t archive actual spam to make the process more manageable), I put emphasis on this because I’ve gone multiple days checking less than an hour after someone else and found false positives on page 2 and up, I could have ignored these by seeing “oh this entry is more than an hour old, someone else already looked at that point in time, so please don’t think like that 🙂

What do I do with posts and topics in the Spam Queue

Is it actually spam? Leave it be for now (hopefully in the future we will get a “Confirmed spam, hide from the list” button, but for now we don’t have that privilege so just live with it for a bit.

Multiple posts in a row? Archive all the duplicates, Unspam the original post so it becomes visible.

This spam isn’t spam! Well, that’s great, you’ve discovered a false positive, just click the Unspam button and let it roam free in the forum jungle.

There shouldn’t be a situation where you will send a post from the spam queue to the pending queue.

The Pending Queue

Much like the spam queue, you’ll find that there are “false positives” (I put them in quotes this time) in the pending queue, this is a remnant of the old forum user tagging (See Ottos post for more information there), if you find a user flagged for no apparent reason, feel free to un-flag them.

This time, you have 3 viable options:

Is the post helpful, relates to the topic at hand or just outright obviously sane? Approve the post so it shows up to the forum users

The post demonstrates why the user is flagged, common sense dictates this was not a nice entry and has no place in the forums? Archive the post for future reference to hide it from the world.

This is just spam, the user might’ve been marked for spam from the old forums or it’s just coincidence, either way: Spam the post to send it ot the spam queue and let Akismet learn what the bad people are doing.

That’s it really, it’s simple, but it requires a bit of dedication to do it “right” to avoid crossing the streams when everyone works on top of each other, and to ensure we don’t leave users posts hanging.