Spam and other low quality public chat content

The second principle of Status is censorship resistance, so this may be a complex topic… but I’ve seen no public discussions about filtering the disproportionate amount of low quality content that is increasingly prevalent in public chat. The long term roadmap includes Tribute to Talk and Status for desktop… but today, users can’t block any content that is delivered through matterbridge without blocking it all. Has the Status Network defined and/or addressed low quality content in the past?

Almost no usage limits appear to be enforced. Users can flood/scroll a public chat with stickers that take up 1/4 of the screen… or worse, repeatedly paste and send messages that are thousands of characters long. If blocked, users can create new accounts. Repeated automated posts of enormous messages to an unnoticed public chat could silently result in a denial of service attack against nodes, and generate untenable memory/storage requirements. Do clients and mailserver nodes handle this gracefully today?

As flooding/scrolling the chat could be construed as censorship of content that came before it, I believe that addressing these concerns doesn’t compromise Status principles. Message rate and size limits would help to address this, so I’ve submitted them as feature requests… but it seems that users would also need the ability to block content itself, as opposed to blocking a specific user. Users could also potentially hide messages containing content that the community has rated as low quality in the past.

Allowing users to block messages containing specific phrases and link destinations (after their redirects complete) could potentially address this, and adding it to a context menu on a long press or selected text could make this user-friendly. Is any of this on the roadmap? If aspects of this have already been addressed, especially if there are limits in the client and/or server specifications that we can be pointed to, please point us to them.


Allowing users to block messages containing specific phrases and link destinations (after their redirects complete) could potentially address this

Correct me if I’m wrong please. Is what you’re describing a hide feature on the client side? As in You receive all messages as is, but you can set your client to simply not show you certain content?


one way to help deal with unwanted content would be to introduce mute filters similar to Twitter’s, so instead of blocking users you can block messages that contain any of the keywords you set or content type like say stickers


@hester, thank you for replying and asking for clarification. Depending on the feature implementation, the client app could theoretically hide specific content if the content matched a substring in a local list. It might also be possible for the client to follow all redirects to the final destination of a URL to block substrings that way, assuming that the response is timely.

@maciej, filtering by the type of content sounds excellent as well. Perhaps we could grant additional privileges, such as the restricting the ability to post certain times of repeatedly abused content such as URLs only after a user has staked SNT. I’m just spitballing that idea, as it sounds like it may require a change outside the client which could be difficult to implement.

I’m also trying to imagine a way that user content filters could be stored… perhaps by leveraging one or more DApps that can read and write a list of filters on the client (when matching the chat key) on request, or at specific times. Please let me know if this description is unclear.

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Very good point @Chris!

Also, I’ve received a lot of questions from the community that if they can disable all the messages from Discord using Matterbridge. I agree that it is kind of distracting sometimes. What do you think of a toggle disabling messages from Discord it a will?

Blocking messages based on keywords is such a good idea. We need a proper way to moderate public chats on our terms.


I’m glad that you agree, @Jinho! Users should be able to block and unblock the @bridge.stateofus.eth user through the Status app to disable and enable messages from Discord, Gitter, and other services that are synchronized through matterbridge. However… if Status users wish to block the bridge, that speaks to a different underlying issue which the release of Status for desktop will probably resolve.

I also found the following additional threads on this general topic, including some created by core contributors… with solutions such as contracts, reputation, rules, token staking, and voting being proposed. There don’t appear to be any decisions on how to resolve this yet, however… and obviously, user-generated content has many facets.

The roadmap doesn’t appear to have been updated since Rachel left, but the roadmap planning thread does have some details and links regarding upcoming features.