I'm not up to date about what's the preferred process to ask/report large-scale spamming problem, maybe opening a tech ticket, maybe not, so you may be of some help here.
I don't know about en.travel but on hu we definitely "enjoy" an idiot with spambots using some kind of distributed access or tor or other kinds of (open) proxies. If nobody noticed then check recently deleted pages by me, all created by random anons containing gibberish. It has been going on for some time now, at least the kind which gets the unicode text then converts to iso-8859-1 and puts back, which nicely garbles the accented chars. I didn't check for open proxies etc, this may be a global behaviour requiring central action. Or maybe it's just us. ;-)
So far it's okay, and I can handle it with a bot if it would get more annoying but it'd not be optimal.
Welcome to the small but illustrious circle of bureaucrats here on Shared! :-) May I also suggest that you archive some of your talk page, since it seems to be rather full? Riggwelter 06:25, 9 August 2011 (EDT)
So, I see that you make good use of your newly received bureaucrat rights. That's good. What's less good, in my opinion, is that you do it with reference to he fact that we should have a discussion first. That is not in line with our guideline. I have notified the users in question via e-mail, just as the guideline says. I look forward to your view on it. Riggwelter 17:39, 10 August 2011 (EDT)
Sorry, my connection is bad. You should have my message now. --PeterTalk 17:43, 10 August 2011 (EDT)
I have for the time being undone your revoking of six user's admin/bureaucrat status. While the policy here does say privileges will be revoked after 3 months of inactivity, 1) this policy was long ago contested here (and I believe you were the lone dissenter); 2) changed on :en; 3) is controversial and important enough where we should not do this without some sort of discussion and an opportunity for the users in question to object; 4) could potentially alienate returning high-value users; 5) is of questionable value; and 6) may be in poor taste to do to the site's founders! --PeterTalk 17:42, 10 August 2011 (EDT)
I moved your post here, just to keep it in one place :-)
I had actually forgotten all about that - my bad.
Here's a problem. En: is by far the most active version, but I am sure we can all agree on that it is not the same thing as what's done on en: is what is to be done on all other language versions (even if I do accept that it is easy to pull that way...) incl Shared.
I do not see it as particularely controversial unless one thinks that it is a privilege to be an admin. If you're not active, then why retain the user rights? But, I can understand the idea of the need for consensus (as anywhere else...) and I am happy to bring up another discussion.
That is a psossibility, but I also think that high-value users more than the average users accept the idea of protecting Wikitravel.
Anyone working with/having a knowledge of IT security knows that unused accounts is a security risk. I do not see why we should have lifelong user rights... even if I do understand that is not what your advocating.
The founders are clearly not around, nor interested. I doubt they would have anything to say about it (especially since at least one of them has all the rights in the world...)
So, no hard feelings from my side about you reverting my revokes - but just as I did it without the discussion you want, you did the same thing... without asking me why I did it :-) Riggwelter 17:53, 10 August 2011 (EDT)
Sorry for that. You'll notice my activity here today is a little clumsy. Between problems with my own connection and perennial problems with the Wikitravel server, my edits are showing up before or after each other in random fashion...
My main concern was, though, the worry #4, and didn't want people to come back to simply see their privileges revoked. Perhaps we could start a new conversation, since the old ones are lying around in pub cellars in multiple language versions? --PeterTalk 17:59, 10 August 2011 (EDT)
Hi Peter. I'd like to chat with you. You can email me at your convenience at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can discuss it via email or you can provide a phone number and convenient hours for you, and I will call you. Thank you, Paul.--IBobi 20:19, 23 August 2011 (EDT)
I do think it would be good to do, but I'm inclined to wait until some of the more egregious bugs have been taken care of and, crucially, CAPTCHA has been reenabled. Right now we would get a skewed perspective on how big the spam problems are. --PeterTalk 19:30, 1 July 2012 (EDT)