Modern spambots have the ability to solve many of the capcha codes. They also pay live people to register on forums to post spam.
So in order to run smoothly without spam, I employ a few basic measures to determine if someone is a Nihonto enthusiast, or just a spammer. None of them are foolproof, but they help ME.
One of them is the field: Real Name
The other is:
Please sign ALL your posts with at least a real name and initial. Note: If you are not typing a REAL first name in here, your membership will NOT be activated.
I am not looking to verify your knowledge or decide if you are dedicated enough. I just want to know that you have an interest. Typing something like "I am fascinated by Japanese swords" or "I have a sword and am looking for a translation" verify that you are a real person and not a bot.
What is your interest in the NMB?:
Compulsory to fill in an answer here to prevent spam. What brings you here? Interested in swords, fittings, advice or looking for a translation? At least a sentence please. Vague or brief answers may be identified as spam registrations and deleted.
You wouldn't believe the number of answers typed as "asdadqaqqw" or "swords"
If I SAY type a sentence, and you give one word...you are guaranteeing your registration is headed for the bin.
I ask these things for a reason. Make my life easier, and type something as asked. Don't make me go and research your email and ip address. Because if your answer is one of those "fine line" answers that doesn't sound like someone with an interest..then I have to go and research you. That means I have to check your ip isn't on one of the spam lists, your email isn't linked to spam, or if you have a web presence anywhere on the net at all. All just to verify you aren't a spammer. So that I can activate your account.
And when it comes to the real name field (no, this doesn't sign your posts, it is just a profile field for my use if you don't sign posts) then please don't be silly and type a random name. Because if I search your email or ip or one of the other fields, and your name is something else, then I immediately feel like booting you.
As an example, and part of the reason why I have just typed all of this after today's account verifications:
If I am activating your account, and your email is something like firstname.lastname@example.org, and you put your real name as "Bob" and your reason for membership as "swords" then I may just get a little pissed when I Google your email address, and find you everywhere on the net listed as John Smith. That shows a lack of respect for what I have to do here, and to the other members.
Yes, I understand there are some who have fake names. But if I am just asking for a first name, please don't claim you need anonymity or something. That's just not valid.
Please make my life a little easier, and answer the simple registration profile fields properly, and spare me the time it takes to verify you. Remember it is easier for me to delete your registration than to type up an email to ask if that is your real name or not, and await a reply.
I'm not asking a lot. Please help us all to minimise spam and fake registrations.
That is all.