Talk:Spam blacklist

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Requests and proposals Spam blacklist Archives (current)→
The associated page is used by the MediaWiki Spam Blacklist extension, and lists regular expressions which cannot be used in URLs in any page in Wikimedia Foundation projects (as well as many external wikis). Any meta administrator can edit the spam blacklist; either manually or with SBHandler. For more information on what the spam blacklist is for, and the processes used here, please see Spam blacklist/About.
Proposed additions
Please provide evidence of spamming on several wikis and prior blacklisting on at least one. Spam that only affects a single project should go to that project's local blacklist. Exceptions include malicious domains and URL redirector/shortener services. Please follow this format. Please check back after submitting your report, there could be questions regarding your request.
Proposed removals
Please check our list of requests which repeatedly get declined. Typically, we do not remove domains from the spam blacklist in response to site-owners' requests. Instead, we de-blacklist sites when trusted, high-volume editors request the use of blacklisted links because of their value in support of our projects. Please consider whether requesting whitelisting on a specific wiki for a specific use is more appropriate - that is very often the case.
Other discussion
Troubleshooting and problems - If there is an error in the blacklist (i.e. a regex error) which is causing problems, please raise the issue here.
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#wikimedia-external-linksconnect - Real-time IRC chat for co-ordination of activities related to maintenance of the blacklist.
Whitelists There is no global whitelist, so if you are seeking a whitelisting of a url at a wiki then please address such matters via use of the respective Mediawiki talk:Spam-whitelist page at that wiki, and you should consider the use of the template {{edit protected}} or its local equivalent to get attention to your edit.

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Proposed additions[edit]

Symbol comment vote.svg This section is for proposing that a website be blacklisted; add new entries at the bottom of the section, using the basic URL so that there is no link (, not Provide links demonstrating widespread spamming by multiple users on multiple wikis. Completed requests will be marked as {{added}} or {{declined}} and archived.[edit]

Im suggesting to add the preview pages from Google Images Search, as beeing simmiliar to their normal web searches redirector. Surprisingliy it seems like this has not been discussed yet, though there are at least 800 such links on dewiki, 600 on enwiki and more than 1000 on commons. --Nenntmichruhigip (talk) 12:53, 15 September 2016 (UTC)

@Nenntmichruhigip: if there are that many links on those wikis, and the sites are neither blacklisted, nor the links removed, then it is not the place of meta to impose its own opinion. If you believe that we should continue the discussion the please raise the issue at enWP, deWP and Commons and point the users here to discuss.  — billinghurst sDrewth 16:26, 16 September 2016 (UTC)
I've been directed here from dewiki, and don't know where a suitable place on enwiki and commons would be. --Nenntmichruhigip (talk) 13:36, 17 September 2016 (UTC)
The occurences on dewiki are cleaned up by now. On commons there already is an abuse filter catching new additions since two months ago, but afaict no ongoing cleanup of existing ones, despite quite some copyvios. --Nenntmichruhigip (talk) 07:33, 27 September 2016 (UTC)
Until these other wikis address the matter here, it may be best to pursue a local blacklist addition at deWP.  — billinghurst sDrewth 10:19, 27 September 2016 (UTC)
Those links can be used as sbl-circumvention.
As we normally blacklist all possible sbl-circumventions globally here at meta, in my opinion the first place to discuss blacklisting of that domain is here. -- seth (talk) 22:04, 27 September 2016 (UTC)
Agree, though we are not meant to be setting the overarching link policy without direct consultation. To further assist, I have put a bot clean up request to Commons. I have also copied over the filter from Commons to enWP to look at the new additions to monitor, and maybe start a conversation there.  — billinghurst sDrewth 23:11, 10 October 2016 (UTC)[edit]

See, reported by User:Ravensfire

This is ugly, this is one of google's link shorteners. Used across our projects a lot. However, it is prone to abuse as usual for shorteners. It is currently used in w:en:Akasa_Singh, where it redirects to a plain search result. If that is possible.... --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 13:52, 29 November 2016 (UTC)

Standard linksearch does not give a lot .. but is informative. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 13:54, 29 November 2016 (UTC)
It appears that the url will indicate which google page/service the link is for. for maps, doodle for doodle, etc. appears to be for searches, so if there is a need to keep available for some services, blocking just the search may be useful. Ravensfire (talk) 15:37, 29 November 2016 (UTC)
For such a change of a commonly used url, I would have the expectation that (some|the) wikis would block it first, and we would follow. I do not see it blocked.  — billinghurst sDrewth 10:58, 3 December 2016 (UTC)
It is a url shortener .. they get blanket blacklisted on meta, not through local communities. We declined this earlier because people were arguing that it could only be used for google maps. It turns out that that is not the case, it has been (ab)used to link to search engine results (which is discouraged on some wikis, to say the least). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:32, 4 December 2016 (UTC)

Ping. Still think that this is/can be abuse. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 15:39, 5 July 2017 (UTC)[edit]

This is a clear wikipedia mirror, but also used as citation in wikipedia, e.g. [1] and frwiki and eswiki. enwiki seems to be clean. should the domain be blacklisted globally or locally only? -- seth (talk) 19:39, 5 December 2016 (UTC)

@Lustiger seth: Hmm .. this certainly should not be used as a reference, but this site does have it's own article on many Wikis (w:en:Wikiwand and interwikis). I don't think this warrants blacklisting more than (which should also not be used as a reference; en.wikipedia would not blacklist based on being unreliable alone, abuse is needed as excuse for blacklisting). Is the situation 'bad' (I don't see reference-use on enwiki). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 13:09, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
I guess at enwiki somebody cleaned up already (that's what I meant with "enwiki seems to be clean"). (Maybe there's an edit filter or a bot coping with the links in main namespace?) But in other wikis there are still some links left.
I agree in that point that I don't see intended abuse. However, I see violation of our rules and want to stop that. Possibillities I see are: SBL, edit filter, a cleanung up and kindly inform bot. The SBL would be an easy and fast option. The most comfortable solution is the bot I guess.
I guess, I start with an SBL entry at dewiki. An in a few hundred yea^W^W^W^Wsome point in the future I'll implement a more intelligent solution ... -- seth (talk) 23:03, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
@Lustiger seth: this again seems to boil down to a proper rewrite of the spam blacklist extension - to be more edit-filter like. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:42, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
Just noticed this conversation. I've removed quite a few links to this site on enwiki and do weekly sweeps of the http and https links. I hate to call it "abuse" as I'm almost sure 100% of the links were added by mistake rather than through deliberate spamming. They do clearly identify as a mirror; I'm far more concerned with the handful of mirrors that go out of their way to obfuscate the origins of their content. Kuru talk 22:27, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
@Kuru: those might qualify for blacklisting as well. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:44, 12 February 2017 (UTC)
  • Comment Comment COIBot as of today says: COIBot> 1755 records; Top 10 wikis where has been added: w:en (603), w:de (86), w:fr (82), w:pt (76), w:es (73), w:hi (73), w:it (34), w:ru (31), commons (28), w:hy (20). I have set the domain to monitor, and recast for a link check. It is blacklisted at deWP and zhWP.  — billinghurst sDrewth 08:08, 25 December 2016 (UTC)
  • 1873 records; Top 10 wikis where has been added: w:en (639), w:pt (89), w:fr (88), w:de (86), w:es (79), w:hi (79), w:it (38), w:ru (32), commons (30), w:kn (28).  — billinghurst sDrewth[edit]


Google Cache. Easy to use blacklist circumventer, links are also very short-lived. Incidence rate may grow as Google Chrome now provides an option to view cached pages when connecting to a site fails. Train2104 (talk) 05:30, 4 March 2017 (UTC)

Let us see what COIBot can dig up.  — billinghurst sDrewth 07:20, 4 March 2017 (UTC)[edit] redirects to, both URL are porno and morbo. --VR0 (talk) 17:16, 27 March 2017 (UTC)

Only one addition to a (now deleted) page on es.wikipedia for the former of the two. But the editor was also on en.wikipedia, where they are blocked for spamming after creating one article with

Maybe a pattern. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:32, 28 March 2017 (UTC)[edit]

See also: w:en:Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/IncidentArchive956#User engaged in spamming.

Copied across from w:en:MediaWiki and by Jytdog. List of IPs copied on good faith from Jytdog's report, a quick sample shows it to be the same w:en:WP:REFSPAM as the earlier incident, with poorly detailed references and no attribution to the original source of the documents.

The user was indef blocked by Boing! said Zebedee for spamming this on enwiki on 7 June 2017. In addition to the spamming, I had concerns at the time that some of the links may additionally be copyvios (but not all of them). He's back, block evading, IP hopping, and edit warring to try to promote his site.

This looks to be cross-wiki.[2][3]

Murph9000 (talk) 19:26, 22 June 2017 (UTC)[edit]

Shortcut for As the latter is a commercial site, I don't see why we should obscure these. It is from absolutely not clear even whether it is to a correct item. And though this particular is free, probably for many you have to pay. Not sure if this is needed. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 17:08, 5 July 2017 (UTC)

Is there evidence of abuse or potential abuse? If it just a shortened url with no abuse, I am not sure why we would want to. There are numerous "internal" url redirects, if it is just a little shorter, and not abused, what do we care which?—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Billinghurst (talk)
Is linking to this (or its master site) not by definition spam/promotion .. a lot of it will be single edits per editor (not a campaign). I am, on Wikipedia, a great opponent of url shorteners .. you don't know what you are linking to (and at least en.wikipedia 'forbids' using shorteners). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 17:49, 7 July 2017 (UTC)
My comment was more related to the use of the shortener compared with the full url; not the provision of a link in itself. If a link is discouraged or banned, then of course we should ban the shortener. If the link is neither banned nor discouraged, why would we wish to prevent a non-abused linking process that just inhibits and somewhat confuses users, or prevents them from editing. If a specific wiki itself has a rule where a link addition is contrary to that local rule, they can and should use their blacklist. I don't see a requirement for a global ban unless there is broader problem.  — billinghurst sDrewth 01:12, 8 July 2017 (UTC)[edit]

Norton security suite reported an intrusion attempt, in particular, "Fake Tech Support Solution Website 34", when clicking on a link to from the Wikidata item giving the place of death of Isaac Newton. I already removed the link from Wikidata. Jc3s5h (talk) 14:07, 24 July 2017 (UTC)

Update: I tried again just now, and my Firefox browser will not connect, stating "Your connection is not secure. The owner of has configured their website improperly. To protect your information from being stolen, Firefox has not connected to this website." Upon clicking the "Advanced" button the browser reports " uses an invalid security certificate. The certificate is only valid for *"

This raises the suspicion in my mind that the former owners of the domain have lost control of it. In order to defend myself from computer attacks, I am unwilling to investigate further. I believe we are justified in scrubbing from all sites run by the Wikimedia Foundation. Jc3s5h (talk) 13:02, 4 August 2017 (UTC)

i don't see any requirement to blacklist based on your report.  — billinghurst sDrewth 02:52, 5 August 2017 (UTC)
I emailed the owner of the site alerting them of the reported problem. He responded that they had noticed a change in the website behavior and had contacted their hosting company for support. In the mean time, they've replaced the site with a "Down For Maintenance" page. -- Thinking of England (talk) 18:34, 5 August 2017 (UTC)[edit]

Per en.wikipedia's WikiProject Spam remarks. Cross-wiki spam, ánd useless. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 09:39, 2 August 2017 (UTC)

See also w:Wikipedia:Administrators'_noticeboard/Archive291#Is_godchecker.com_blacklisted.3F_If_not.2C_how_to_make_it_happen.3F. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 09:43, 2 August 2017 (UTC)

It is used at numerous sites without blacklisting. How do you see that it sits within the criteria for meta admins for us to add?  — billinghurst sDrewth 03:01, 5 August 2017 (UTC)
The xwiki report shows it has been added by administrator and other trusted users on other wikis. If it problematic at enWP, it may need to be locally managed.  — billinghurst sDrewth 12:49, 5 August 2017 (UTC)[edit]

On 3 August 2017, the administrator @Akeron: has reverted a wave of spam for on the French wikipedia and added this website to the local spam-blacklist. I have looked at the global contributions of the spamming users and I have noticed that they have done widespread spamming, for several months, on Wikipedia in several languages: ca, cs, da, de, en, es, fi, fr, fy, hu, id, it, lt, nl, no, pt, tr, sh, sq, sv, vi... Note: I don't understand why the linksummary template used above finds only 4 uses on the English Wikipedia whereas another External links search finds 20 uses.
Regards --NicoScribe (talk) 10:40, 5 August 2017 (UTC)

@NicoScribe: I have prodded COIBot to run a xwiki report to see where we are. With regard to LinkSearch, it would appear that the default behaviour is for http: and it needs to be forced to do https: as per your example. I have lodged a phabricator ticket phab:T172596 to address this task.  — billinghurst sDrewth 12:46, 5 August 2017 (UTC)
@Beetstra: xwiki report spits out "too many links" are you able to override this by some means so we can get a usable report?  — billinghurst sDrewth 12:51, 5 August 2017 (UTC)
Yes, I can do a db dump, but not earlier than next week as I am travelling. —Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 21:26, 5 August 2017 (UTC)

Proposed additions (Bot reported)[edit]

Symbol comment vote.svg This section is for domains which have been added to multiple wikis as observed by a bot.

These are automated reports, please check the records and the link thoroughly, it may report good links! For some more info, see Spam blacklist/Help#COIBot_reports. Reports will automatically be archived by the bot when they get stale (less than 5 links reported, which have not been edited in the last 7 days, and where the last editor is COIBot).

  • If the report contains links to less than 5 wikis, then only add it when it is really spam
  • Otherwise just revert the link-additions, and close the report; closed reports will be reopened when spamming continues
  • To close a report, change the LinkStatus template to closed ({{LinkStatus|closed}})
  • Please place any notes in the discussion section below the HTML comment


The LinkWatchers report domains meeting the following criteria:

  • When a user mainly adds this link, and the link has not been used too much, and this user adds the link to more than 2 wikis
  • When a user mainly adds links on one server, and links on the server have not been used too much, and this user adds the links to more than 2 wikis
  • If ALL links are added by IPs, and the link is added to more than 1 wiki
  • If a small range of IPs have a preference for this link (but it may also have been added by other users), and the link is added to more than 1 wiki.
COIBot's currently open XWiki reports
List Last update By Site IP R Last user Last link addition User Link User - Link User - Link - Wikis Link - Wikis 2017-08-16 16:31:38 COIBot PAEDUJO 2017-08-16 16:30:55 14 14 0 0 2

Proposed removals[edit]

Symbol comment vote.svg This section is for proposing that a website be unlisted; please add new entries at the bottom of the section.

Remember to provide the specific domain blacklisted, links to the articles they are used in or useful to, and arguments in favour of unlisting. Completed requests will be marked as {{removed}} or {{declined}} and archived.

See also /recurring requests for repeatedly propo sed (and refused) removals.


  • The addition or removal of a domain from the blacklist is not a vote; please do not bold the first words in statements.
  • This page is for the removal of domains from the global blacklist, not for removal of domains from the blacklists of individual wikis. For those requests please take your discussion to the pertinent wiki, where such requests would be made at Mediawiki talk:Spam-blacklist at that wiki. Search spamlists — remember to enter any relevant language code[edit]

Hi all. I wanted to write an article about an anime, but the website from where I wish to use some references is on blacklist. Apparently it was added here. If the cause does not hold anymore, can someone please remove it? Thanks, Whitepixels (talk) 19:15, 14 June 2017 (UTC)

It is a fan site, and one that was spammed. The Wikipedias look sideways at fan sites; and we look sideways at spam. I would suggest the wiki where you wish have the article,and see if they can whitelist the url that you wish to utilise.  — billinghurst sDrewth 06:15, 15 June 2017 (UTC)
Thanks for your reply. Whitepixels (talk) 11:36, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
@Billinghurst: I see no sign of spamming in the report; link additions are either made as part of major content expansions or done by experienced users. And most Wikipedias do not look sideways at fansites when those are the best available content for users who don't speak Japanese. You can see that from the link still being in the dewiki Tezuka article, for example (having been added more than 3 years ago). --Tgr (talk) 14:42, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
@Tgr: It would have been spammed as I quickcreated the report, and that would have been in response to spambots, and repeated spambots activity; and a review of whether it was being used at wikis. I don't remember anything particular about the particular case. Where a site has been added for spambot activity to sites it has been the practice to ask users to seek whitelisting as the means to graduate our way out of blacklisting. 1) It shows that communities want the link, and 2) that sites can have it and not be spammed with it. Re sideways, w:Wikipedia:External links is my guide; it is neither a ringing endorsement nor an invitation to add fan sites.  — billinghurst sDrewth 14:56, 17 June 2017 (UTC)[edit]

This is the website for the Rambler News Service, which is a news agency. Rambler is sort of the Yahoo of Russia. Rambler creates its own news and runs articles from other agencies. It's quite useful as a source. I'm not sure why it's blocked unless the entire .online domain is blocked. Thanks for your time. Wikimandia (talk) 05:29, 9 July 2017 (UTC)

@Wikimandia: I don't find a global blacklisting for the domain or urls like it, nor a simple block for online top level domain. That said across all the wikis a grep shows me online\b' found in 971 rules, of which only two are global and more explicit so not the cause, similarly 150 include use of the term online in global blacklist, though a quick scan indicates that they are again more explicit rules. 15 uses of rns\. though none are global, and all are more specific. Are you certain that it is a global rule, rather than a local rule? Otherwise we are going to see and know more, eg. where are you attempting addition?  — billinghurst sDrewth 05:53, 9 July 2017 (UTC)
Oh it could be local - I will look at that. Local makes sense, since I imagine it's used on the Russian wikipedia. Thanks. Wikimandia (talk) 05:59, 9 July 2017 (UTC)

@Billinghurst: Now this one was complex. Just to note, you can feed COIBot the whole link in 'wherelisted', and that will give you the answer. This rule turned out to be so complex that even a simple whitelisting of the domain did not do the trick. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 07:21, 9 July 2017 (UTC)

Thanks Beetstra. I had checked the domain, though didn't have a confirmed wiki, let a lone an url.  — billinghurst sDrewth 07:42, 9 July 2017 (UTC)
@Billinghurst: It also took me some time, next time we should be faster in asking 'what link were you actually trying to add', so we can throw it in IRC in the general direction of COIBot. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 08:11, 9 July 2017 (UTC)

Declined nothing to do local issue at enWP  — billinghurst sDrewth 07:43, 9 July 2017 (UTC)

Troubleshooting and problems[edit]

Symbol comment vote.svg This section is for comments related to problems with the blacklist (such as incorrect syntax or entries not being blocked), or problems saving a page because of a blacklisted link. This is not the section to request that an entry be unlisted (see Proposed removals above). deblock[edit]

This authority is used 24.923 times in main space in dewiki!. It is used to clean up Special:Linksearch from known dead links, by redirecting them over this authority. It is hard to find a better solution for this task. --Boshomi (talk) 16:38, 24 July 2015 (UTC) Ping:User:BillinghurstBoshomi (talk) 16:49, 24 July 2015 (UTC)

Please notice Phab:T89586, while not fixed, it is not possible to find the links with standard special:LinkSearch. in dewiki we can use giftbot/Weblinksuche instead.--Boshomi (talk) 18:04, 24 July 2015 (UTC)
afaics could be used to circumvent the SBL, is that correct? -- seth (talk) 21:30, 24 July 2015 (UTC)
I don't think so, the redircted URL is unchanged, so the SBL works like the achive-URLs to the Internet Archive. --Boshomi (talk) 07:44, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
It is not a stored/archived page at, it is a redirect service as clearly stated at the URL and in that it obfuscates links. To describe it in any other way misrepresents the case, whether deWP uses it for good or not. We prevent abuseable redirects from other services due to the potential for abuse. You can consider whitelisting the URL in w:de:MediaWiki:spam-whitelist if it is a specific issue for your wiki.  — billinghurst sDrewth 10:09, 25 July 2015 (UTC)
what I want to say was that the SBL-mechanism works in the same way like A blocked URL will be blocked with unbubble-prefix to the blocked URL.--Boshomi (talk) 12:54, 25 July 2015 (UTC)

non-ascii are not blocked?[edit]

I saw \bказино-форум\.рф\b in the page, so it's supposed to be blocked. However, I can link it: http://казино-форум.рф It seems like all non-ascii links will be able to avoid blocking.

In Thai Wikipedia (where I am an admin), there are a lot of Thai URLs that we want to put them in the local blacklist but we couldn't because of the very same reason. --Nullzero (talk) 17:42, 18 February 2016 (UTC)

This should go to Phab: quickly - that is a real issue. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 05:52, 21 February 2016 (UTC)
@Beetstra: Please see Phab:T28332. It seems that you need to put \xd0\xba\xd0\xb0\xd0\xb7\xd0\xb8\xd0\xbd\xd0\xbe-\xd1\x84\xd0\xbe\xd1\x80\xd1\x83\xd0\xbc\.\xd1\x80\xd1\x84 (without \b) instead of \bказино-форум\.рф\b --Nullzero (talk) 20:00, 21 February 2016 (UTC)
*sigh* somehow the workaround doesn't work with Thai characters, so I don't know if \xd0\xba\xd0\xb0\xd0\xb7\xd0\xb8\xd0\xbd\xd0\xbe-\xd1\x84\xd0\xbe\xd1\x80\xd1\x83\xd0\xbc\.\xd1\x80\xd1\x84 will actually work or not. Please try it anyway... --Nullzero (talk) 20:24, 21 February 2016 (UTC)

Are these global, or local[edit]

Regarding my log of blocks, I have over the last days blocked almost 50 IPs whose only edits are hitting the blacklist (there is a related filter on en, that gets some hits). It makes the logs unreadable. My questions: a) is this a global problem, and b) if so, can we have a bot that globally blocks these IPs on sight (with withdrawal of talkpage access) so we de-clutter the logs. I block these for 1 month at first, as soon as they attempt to use one of the typical domains/links or when they add links to typical pages they tend to try. Is it feasible to have bot that gets access to these records and locks them globally? --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 06:55, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

Note: seeing this (meta admin eyes only), it is global, there are many IPs with the same MO. So the request simplifies: can we have a bot that globally checks for this and lock the IPs on sight so we declutter the logs. For en.wikipedia, we have en:Template:spamblacklistblock as block reason/talkpage template for them. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 06:58, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

@Beetstra: that is stewards' territory. There was no such bot when I had that hat, and if one existed now you would see it with the steward's right. So, no would be my guided guess  — billinghurst sDrewth 03:43, 24 February 2017 (UTC)
@Billinghurst: On there is now a bot that blocks them, but maybe that should be extended (I notice that the list of regexes of that bot needs updating). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 07:47, 24 February 2017 (UTC)
Yes, I know it. I am saying that this is a matter for stewards to globally block, rather than locally block IP addresses which is an admin task.  — billinghurst sDrewth 09:06, 24 February 2017 (UTC)
Note (@stewards who see this): I do have the impression that it actually helps. One of the domains that was hammered hard in the past has now disappeared from the lists, and although new domains pop up (which hence do not result in spamblackistblocks), and we still get daily hits, it is much less than before. Maybe worth to try this globally. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:36, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
It might be worth doing. It's probably a bit more difficult to implement globally, since there is no centralized location for SBL hits, and we don't have any existing bots with steward permissions. – Ajraddatz (talk) 05:23, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
It is a bit more difficult indeed, but I guess that loading the per-wiki spam-blacklist log for the last y hist every x minutes would be sufficient. IIRC, the bot on en.wikipedia pulls the log every 2 minutes, in that time the bot could do a full round on the ~800 wikis. It indeed would likely need steward permissions, but I am sure that there are people with a steward bit and that are bot operators, which could run the script that User:Anomie is running on en.wikipedia. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 10:23, 5 March 2017 (UTC)
(or the logs should be made public - I don't really see a reason why these are admin-eyes-only anyway). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 10:24, 5 March 2017 (UTC)[edit]

This is the official website of the Italian commune of Viagrande (d:Q478954) and the blacklist block it as "spam to viagra". In, if the infobox takes the data of Wikidata the page is permanently blocked. --Metrónomo-Goldwyn-Mayer 23:09, 29 April 2017 (UTC)

I have adapted the rule, it now should exclude the link: --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 06:54, 30 April 2017 (UTC)
Checkmark This section is resolved and can be archived. If you disagree, replace this template with your comment.  — billinghurst sDrewth 30 April 2017 (UTC)


Symbol comment vote.svg This section is for discussion of Spam blacklist issues among other users.

Expert maintenance[edit]

One (soon) archived and rejected removal suggestion was about matched by a filter intended to block One user suggested that this side-effect might be as it should be, another user suggested that regular expressions are unable to distinguish these cases, and nobody has a clue when and why was blocked. I suggest to find an expert maintainer for this list, and to remove all blocks older than 2010. The bots identifying abuse will restore still needed ancient blocks soon enough, hopefully without any oogle matching google cases. –Be..anyone (talk) 00:50, 20 January 2015 (UTC)

No, removing some of the old rules, before 2010 or even before 2007, will result in further abuse, some of the rules are intentionally wide as to stop a wide range of spamming behaviour, and as I have argued as well, I have 2 cases on my en.wikipedia list where companies have been spamming for over 7 years, have some of their domains blacklisted, and are still actively spamming related domains. Every single removal should be considered on a case-by-case basis. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:42, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
Just to give an example to this - redirect sites have been, and are, actively abused to circumvent the blacklist. Some of those were added before the arbitrary date of 2010. We are not going to remove those under the blanket of 'having been added before 2010', they will stay blacklisted. Some other domains are of similar gravity that they should never be removed. How are you, reasonably, going to filter out the rules that never should be removed. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:52, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
By the way, you say ".. intended to block .." .. how do you know? --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:46, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
I know that nobody would block if what they mean is, or vice versa. It's no shame to have no clue about regular expressions, a deficit we apparently share.:tongue:Be..anyone (talk) 06:14, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
I am not sure what you are referring to - I am not native in regex, but proficient enough. The rule was added to block, at least, and (if it were ONLY these two, \bxlal(u|e)\.com\b or \bxlal[ue]\.com\b would have been sufficient, but it is impossible to find this far back what all was spammed, possibly, and were abused by these proxy-spammers. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 08:50, 20 January 2015 (UTC) may have been one of the cases, but one rule that was blacklisted before this blanket was imposed was '' ( rule was removed in a cleanout-session, after the blanket was added). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 04:45, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
The dots in administrative domains and DNS mean something, notably is typically related to an administrative bar.example domain (ignoring well-known exceptions like etc., Mozilla+SURBL have lists for this), while foobar.example has nothing to do with bar.example. –Be..anyone (talk) 06:23, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
I know, but I am not sure how this relates to this suggested cleanup. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 08:50, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
If your suggested clean-ups at some point don't match the request by a Chinese user would be satisfied—as noted all I found out is a VirusTotal "clean", it could be still a spam site if it ever was a spam site.
The regexp could begin with "optionally any string ending with a dot" or similar before xlalk. There are "host name" RFCs (LDH: letter digit hyphen) up to IDNAbis (i18n domains), they might contain recipes. –Be..anyone (talk) 16:56, 20 January 2015 (UTC)
What suggested cleanups? I am not suggesting any cleanup or blanket removal of old rules. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:50, 21 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I have supported delisting above, having researched the history, posted at Talk:Spam_blacklist/About#Old_blacklisting_with_scanty_history. If it desired to keep and on the blacklist (though it's useless at this point), the shotgun regex could be replaced with two listings, easy peasy. --Abd (talk) 01:42, 21 January 2015 (UTC)
    As I said earlier, are you sure that it is only xlale and xlalu, those were the two I found quickly, there may have been more, I do AGF that the admin who added the rule had reason to blanket it like this. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:50, 21 January 2015 (UTC)
Of course I'm not sure. There is no issue of bad faith. He had reason to use regex, for two sites, and possibly suspected additional minor changes would be made. But he only cited two sites. One of the pages was deleted, and has IP evidence on it, apparently, which might lead to other evidence from other pages, including cross-wiki. But the blacklistings themselves were clearly based on enwiki spam and nothing else was mentioned. This blacklist was the enwiki blacklist at that time. After enwiki got its own blacklist, the admin who blacklisted here attempted to remove all his listings. This is really old and likely obsolete stuff. --Abd (talk) 20:07, 21 January 2015 (UTC)
3 at least. And we do not have to present a full case for blacklisting (we often don't, per en:WP:BEANS and sometimes privacy concerns), we have to show sufficient abuse that needs to be stopped. And if that deleted page was mentioned, then certainly there was reason to believe that there were cross-wiki concerns.
Obsolete, how do you know? Did you go through the cross-wiki logs of what was attempted to be spammed? Do you know how often some of the people active here are still blacklisting spambots using open proxies? Please stop with these sweeping statements until you have fully searched for all evidence. 'After enwiki got its own blacklist, the admin who blacklisted here attempted to remove all his listings.' - no, that was not what happened. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:16, 22 January 2015 (UTC)
I searched all the logs (Special:Log/spamblacklist) of several wikis using the regexp entry /xlal[0-9a-z-]*\.com/.
There were almost no hits:
w:ca: 0
w:ceb: 0
w:de: 0
w:en: 1: 20131030185954,
w:es: 1: 20140917232510,
w:fr: 0
w:it: 0
w:ja: 0
w:nl: 0
w:no: 0
w:pl: 0
w:pt: 0
w:ru: 0
w:sv: 0
w:uk: 0
w:vi: 0
w:war: 0
w:zh: 1: 20150107083744,
So there was just one single hit at w:en (not even in the main namespace, but in the user namespace), one in w:es, and one in w:zh (probably a false positive). So I agree with user:Abd that removing of this entry from the sbl would be the best solution. -- seth (talk) 18:47, 21 February 2015 (UTC)
Finally an argument based on evidence (these logs should be public, not admin-only - can we have something like this in a search-engine, this may come in handy in some cases!). Consider removed. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 06:59, 22 February 2015 (UTC)
By the way, Seth, this is actually no hits - all three you show here are collateral. Thanks for this evidence, this information would be useful on more occasions to make an informed decision (also, vide infra). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 07:25, 22 February 2015 (UTC)
I am not sure that we want the Special page to be public, though I can see some value in being able to have something at ToolLabs to be available to run queries, or something available to be run through quarry.  — billinghurst sDrewth 10:57, 22 February 2015 (UTC)
Why not public? There is no reason to hide this, this is not BLP or COPYVIO sensitive information in 99.99% of the hits. The chance that this is non-public information is just as big as for certain blocks to be BLP violations (and those are visible) ... --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 04:40, 23 February 2015 (UTC)

Now restarting the original debate[edit]

As the blacklist is long, and likely contains rules that are too wide a net and which are so old that they are utterly obsolete (or even, may be giving collateral damage on a regular basis), can we see whether we can set up some criteria (that can be 'bot tested'):

  1. Rule added > 5 years ago.
  2. All hits (determined on a significant number of wikis), over the last 2 years (for now: since the beginning of the log = ~1.5 years) are collateral damage - NO real hits.
  3. Site is not a redirect site (should not be removed, even if not abused), is not a known phishing/malware site (to protect others), or a true copyright violating site. (this is hard to bot-test, we may need s.o. to look over the list, take out the obvious ones).

We can make some mistakes on old rules if they are not abused (remove some that actually fail #3) - if they become a nuisance/problem again, we will see them again, and they can be speedily re-added .. thoughts? --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 07:25, 22 February 2015 (UTC)

@@Hoo man: you have worked on clean up before, some of your thoughts would be welcomed.  — billinghurst sDrewth 10:53, 22 February 2015 (UTC)
Doing this kind of clean up is rather hard to automatize. What might be working better for starters could be removing rules that didn't match anything since we started logging hits. That would presumably cut down the whole blacklist considerably. After that we could re-evaluate the rest of the blacklist, maybe following the steps outlined above. - Hoo man (talk) 13:33, 22 February 2015 (UTC)
Not hitting anything is dangerous .. there are likely some somewhat obscure redirect sites on it which may not have been attempted to be abused (though, also those could be re-added). But we could do test-runs easily - just save a cleaned up copy of the blacklist elsewhere, and diff them against the current list, and see what would get removed.
Man, I want this showing up in the RC-feeds, then LiWa3 could store them in the database (and follow redirects to show what people wanted to link to ..). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:30, 23 February 2015 (UTC)
I created a table of hits of blocked link additions. Maybe it's of use for the discussion: User:lustiger_seth/sbl_log_stats (1,8 MB wiki table).
I'd appreciate, if we deleted old entries. -- seth (talk) 22:12, 26 February 2015 (UTC)
Hi, thank you for this, it gives a reasonable idea. Do you know if the rule-hits were all 'correct' (for those that do show that they were hit) or mainly/all false-positives (if they are false-positive hitting, we could based on this also decide to tighten the rule to avoid the false-positives). Rules with all-0 (can you include a 'total' score) would certainly be candidates for removal (though still determine first whether they are 'old' and/or are nono-sites before removal). I am also concerned that this is not including other wikifarms - some sites may be problematic on other wikifarms, or hitting a large number of smaller wikis (which have less control due to low admin numbers). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:36, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
We probably can't get information of false positives automatically. I added a 'sum' column.
Small wikis: If you give me a list of the relevant ones, I can create another list. -- seth (talk) 10:57, 8 March 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for the sum-column. Regarding the false-positives, it would be nice to be able to quickly see what actually got blocked by a certain rule, I agree that that then needs a manual inspection, but the actual number of rules with zero hits on the intended stuff to be blocked is likely way bigger than what we see.
How would you define the relevant small wikis - that is depending on the link that was spammed? Probably the best is to parse all ~750 wiki's, make a list of rules with 0 hits, and a separate list of rules with <10 hits (and including there the links that were blocked), and exclude everything above that. Then these resulting rules should be filtered by those which were added >5 years ago. That narrows down the list for now, and after a check for obvious no-no links, those could almost be blanket-removed (just excluding the ones with real hits, the obvious redirect sites and others - which needs a manual check). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 06:59, 9 March 2015 (UTC)
At User:Lustiger_seth/sbl_log_stats/all_wikis_no_hits there's a list containing ~10k entries that never triggered the sbl during 2013-sep and 2015-feb anywhere (if my algorithm is correct).
If you want to get all entries older than 5 years, then it should be sufficent to use only the entries in that list until (and including) \bbudgetgardening\.co\.uk\b.
So we could delete ~5766 entries. What do think? Shall we give it a try? -- seth (talk) 17:06, 18 April 2015 (UTC)
The question is, how many of those are still existing redirect sites etc. Checking 5800 is quite a job. On the other hand, with LiWa3/COIBot detecting - it is quite easy to re-add them. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 19:28, 21 April 2015 (UTC)
According to the last few lines, I've removed 124kB of non-hitting entries now. I did not remove all of them, because some were url shorteners and I guess, that they are a special case, even if not used yet. -- seth (talk) 22:25, 16 September 2015 (UTC)

Blacklisting spam URLs used in references[edit]

Looks like a site is using the "references" section as a spam farm. If a site is added to this list, can the blacklist block the spam site? Raysonho (talk) 17:45, 5 September 2015 (UTC)

Yes they can.--AldNonymousBicara? 21:56, 5 September 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, Aldnonymous! Raysonho (talk) 00:07, 6 September 2015 (UTC)

url shorteners[edit]

IMHO the url shorteners should be grouped in one section, because they are a special group of urls that need a special treatment. A url shortener should not be removed from sbl unless the domain is dead, even if it has not been used for spamming, right? -- seth (talk) 22:11, 28 September 2015 (UTC)

That would be beneficial to have them in a section. Problem is, most of them are added by script, and are hence just put at the bottom. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 04:51, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
Maybe it would seem more preferable to have "spam blacklist" be a compilation file, made of files one of which would be "spam blacklist.shorteners"  — billinghurst sDrewth 12:15, 24 December 2015 (UTC)
This seems like a nice idea. Would certainly help with cleaning up of it (which we don't do nowadays). IIRC, it is technically possible to have different spam blacklist pages so this is technically possible, just needs a agreement among us and someone to do it. --Glaisher (talk) 12:17, 24 December 2015 (UTC)

@Beetstra, Lustiger seth, Glaisher, Vituzzu, MarcoAurelio, Hoo man, and Legoktm: and others. What are your thoughts on a concatenation of files as described above. If we have a level of agreement, then we can work out the means to an outcome.  — billinghurst sDrewth 12:39, 25 January 2016 (UTC)

  • I am somewhat in favour of this - split the list into a couple of sublists - one for url-shorteners, one for 'general terms' (mainly at the top of the list currently), and the regular list. It would however need an adaptation of the blacklist script (I've done something similar for en.wikipedia (a choice of blacklisting or revertlisting for each link), I could give that hack a try here, time permitting). AFAIK the extension in the software is capable of handling this. Also, it would be beneficial for the cleanout work, that the blacklist itself is 'sectioned' into years. Although being 8 years old is by no means a reason to expect that the spammers are not here anymore (I have two cases on en.wikipedia that are older than that), we do tend to be more lenient with the old stuff. (on the other hand .. why bother .. the benefits are mostly on our side so we don't accidentally remove stuff that should be solved by other means). --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 13:05, 25 January 2016 (UTC)
Is it really possible to have different spam blacklist pages? What would happen to the sites that use this very list to block unwanted spam? —MarcoAurelio 14:23, 25 January 2016 (UTC)
It is technically possible. But this would mean that if we move all the URL shortener entries to a new page, all sites using it currently would have to update the extension or explicitly add the new blacklist to their config or these links would be allowed on their sites (and notifying all these wikis about this breaking change is next to impossible). Another issue I see is that a new blacklist file means there would be a separate network request on cache miss so their might be a little delay in page saves (but I'm not sure whether this delay would be a noticeable delay). --Glaisher (talk) 15:38, 25 January 2016 (UTC)
Before we activate such a feature, we should update some scripts that don't know anything about sbl subpages yet.
Apart from that I don't think that a sectioning into years would be of much use. One can use the (manual) log for this. A subject-oriented sectioning could be of more use, but this would also be more difficult for us. -- seth (talk) 20:49, 27 January 2016 (UTC)
Another list for shorters would be a good idea. Also, a bunch of years ago Hoo wrote a script to find (and remove) expired domains. --Vituzzu (talk) 14:10, 22 February 2017 (UTC)

Before developers spend a lot of time on this, I would really prefer that they spend their time to completely overhaul the whole blacklist system, and make it more edit-filter like (though not with the heavy overhead of the interpretation mechanism, just plain regexes like the blacklist, but different rules for different regexes. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 10:08, 23 February 2017 (UTC)

External repositories[edit]

I recently found's notCredible list. I think this, along with similar projects, could be a good addition to the list.

Also, it would be great if the updates could be automated.--Strainu (talk) 16:05, 10 February 2017 (UTC)

It hasn't been our approach to proactively seek out lists of problematic sites, it has instead been reactive to problematic editing, typical examples are the redirect urls where we wait until they are spammed. To do that I would be prefer to see an RFC at meta and something notified to the wikis. Such a change needs to have a demonstrated value. Do we have an indication that we are being abused? Maybe we are better talking to @Beetstra: on whether we can utiise COIBot to simply add each domain to the bot's monitor list, at least as part of the proof of problem needing to be managed.

*If* were going to change to pro-active generated lists, I would like to see a re-architecture of how the blacklist is generated. It would be more useful to keep all such lists as their own entities and have a means to concatenate them at list generation time. I look at the indication of time that it takes for spamblacklist to roll out and anything that makes that longer and longer with little clear gain.  — billinghurst sDrewth 11:36, 11 February 2017 (UTC)

To note that I have picked 10 clickbait sites and having COIBot run some checks to see what may be there.  — billinghurst sDrewth 11:40, 11 February 2017 (UTC)

Mentioning the sites here, in a LinkSummary template, makes a record in COIBot that they were reported here, and a report is generated. As anything can be spammed, I see little gain in having everything being monitored, even pre-emptively. We know that some spammers will create domains as they need them, and they cannot be pre-emptively monitored. Having a stronger detection mechanism may be nice, but since the linkwatchers are having a pain following everything, I don't think I will have resources to make a stronger mechanism (nor do I have time).

What sDrewth is suggesting is of what we want already for a long, long time: A proper rewrite of the spam blacklist. Developers unfortunately are busy with what WMF thinks is more important.</frustration> What I would like to have is a spam blacklist based on the EditFilter - take the current EditFilter, strip it completely of its interpretation function, and replace it with a simple field with regexes (formatted like in our blacklist). The only test that the system needs to do is to test, for each 'SpamFilter', whether the regexes match against the added external links. You then have the options (already available from EditFilter) to log only, warn, throttle, (warn and block), and block, add a custom custom ('hej <expletive>, you are using a redirect site, please adapt your edit and use the real site'). You can then fancy it up with more options if you like (add whitelisting, wikifamily-selection, namespace-selection, per-page exclusion, etc. etc.). It would give much more flexibility and control to the current spam-blacklist, and pre-emptive monitoring through log-only (or even warning) would be a non-disruptive option. Working a lot here and on en.wikipedia, I am sometimes surprised how much 'good use' there is of some links that nonetheless need to be blacklisted due to uncontrollable abuse. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 03:48, 13 February 2017 (UTC)

@Hoo man: is there value transferring some of this into phabricator request for spam blacklist v. extrapolation of abuse filter? I remember there was some discussion about abuse filter needing some sort of morph, so not sure how we best address this to the developer community.  — billinghurst sDrewth 03:53, 24 February 2017 (UTC)
@Billinghurst: Sorry for the late reply, but yes please, bring this up on Phabricator. We have been talking about this change since at least 2013, but sadly nothing happened since (except for some discussions here and there). Cheers, Hoo man (talk) 10:40, 30 March 2017 (UTC)