email floods (e.g. from broken NDR's, holiday bots, or just escalating flame wars) require admin intervention to halt/fix

Bug #114820 reported by Björn Tillenius on 2007-05-15
18
This bug affects 1 person
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
Launchpad itself
High
Unassigned

Bug Description

At the moment, it's possible for a bug to be flooded by bug comments, if an (ill-behaving) autoresponder is subscribed to a bug. This happened on bug 74252, and even though we'll fix so that we'll drop that kind of comments, this could happen again. If something like that happens, it requires an admin to be alerted so that he can fix it.

We should detect and prevent this automatically.

One approach would be to have some kind of limit, per bug and day, so that you can only post a certain number of comments to a bug (via e-mail), after that you get blocked/unsubscribed. One option is to have limit of comments per day, but that might punish legit users (for example, if there's a busy discussion on the bug.

Another solution would be to limit the number of consecutive comments on a bug, so that you can only post X number of comments in a row.

Another would be to detect replies that are identical / near identical and collapse or filter them.

Björn Tillenius (bjornt) wrote :

Setting to high, since even though this has happened only once, people get upset when they get spammed like this.

Changed in malone:
assignee: nobody → bjornt
importance: Undecided → High
status: Unconfirmed → Confirmed
Björn Tillenius (bjornt) wrote :

This bug affects the answer tracker as well.

Changed in launchpad-answers:
importance: Undecided → High
status: Unconfirmed → Confirmed
Changed in launchpad-answers:
importance: High → Medium
Curtis Hovey (sinzui) on 2009-05-16
Changed in launchpad-answers:
importance: Medium → Low
Changed in malone:
assignee: Björn Tillenius (bjornt) → nobody
Curtis Hovey (sinzui) on 2010-12-05
tags: added: email
description: updated
Robert Collins (lifeless) wrote :

This may be something for the notification service to provide - it could tell launchpad on (near) identical notifications for the same (object) (actor) etc. That would then let launchpad implement policy (e.g. rate limiting the user, blocking them on one object etc).

visibility: private → public
Robert Collins (lifeless) wrote :

More thoughts - this is a special case of 'robots talking to each other' which is a special case of 'actors talking to each other'. The problem with robots vs most humans is that they don't know when to shut up :).

We should solve this without reference to email specifically, as that will give us the widest protection against the non-special case circumstances (which do already happen).

tags: added: notifications
summary: - Stop e-mail floods automatically
+ email floods (e.g. from broken NDR's, holiday bots, or just escalating
+ flame wars) require admin intervention to halt/fix
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