Hacker Newsnew | comments | show | ask | jobs | submitlogin
Freenode has blocked the Mibbit client permanently. (mibbit.com)
76 points by lucumo 1849 days ago | comments


axod 1849 days ago | link

This is a sad thing in terms of Freenode, and users trying to access it from Mibbit, but will not affect Mibbit as such.

I remember using Freenode early on when I discovered open source. It was a fantastic vibrant place with hackers all over the place. openprojects, lilo, great...

Unfortunately, maybe it's got too big. The atmosphere has changed for the worse IMHO. In my opinion, the staff no longer represent the community.

Today, they put their own ideals ahead of their users. Their objections to Mibbit have been

  * It's not open source
  * It makes money
The 'abuse' reason I believe is a red herring. Abuse is easy enough to deal with, and them operating their own web client won't change how often people abuse using a web client. In fact their own web client is less secure than mibbit in terms of preventing abuse.

So, IMHO, a sad day for Freenode and all that they used to represent, but an opportunity to create a new haven for hackers.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Today, they put their own ideals ahead of their users. Their objections to Mibbit have been: It's not open source, It makes money

Working with Mibbit clearly costs freenode time and resources that they would rather not spend. Since Mibbit makes money, perhaps you should consider entering into a contractual relationship to provide them with financial incentive and other guarantees, in exchange for their investment in supporting your service?

The 'abuse' reason I believe is a red herring. Abuse is easy enough to deal with, and them operating their own web client won't change how often people abuse using a web client.

The abuse from Mibbit has been the only reason (in months) that I've had to set myself as an operator and ban users. As a user, I don't feel this is a 'red herring'.

So, IMHO, a sad day for Freenode and all that they used to represent, but an opportunity to create a new haven for hackers.

I'm perfectly happy on Freenode, and our IRC channels are quite vibrant. I hope you can reach a resolution with the Freenode staff.

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

I offered to sponsor servers, to help with coding, etc many many times. My emails were ignored. When I popped into #freenode to ask, they said "We assumed you wanted something in return so we ignored them".

I also offered to help with the abuse. I've asked several times for details of abuse. I haven't been able to get concrete details on what abuse happens, when, what they have to do etc. The staff are incredibly secretive - unlike other networks, they don't link servers, their staff run everything, and I believe this was one of the reasons - they want complete control over everything including web clients.

Out of 500 or so people @peak times, I think the abuse level was really low. Also it's easily solved with a WEBIRC setup which we have with a large number of IRC networks (Which we never hear from, because abuse is handled by WEBIRC and their own systems as with direct connections).

I hope freenode will decide to reconsider, but they clearly want people to use their own web client, rather than mibbit. It would have been nice to at least give people some notice rather than just shut off access.

-----

mst 1849 days ago | link

We (#perl) banned mib_* nicks and found anybody smart enough to type their own nickname in was generally fine. Plus we learned how to extract the original IP from the mibbit host string so we could nuke ban evaders comfortably even without freenode supporting WEBIRC.

In fact, we were planning to have mibbit links to freenode#perl showing up all sorts of places in the perl community to try and make it easier for people to get onto IRC and ask questions when they got stuck with things. I've notified the guys working on that to hang fire until we work out what the hell is going on.

Most annoying, whoever's fault it is (and being an argument on the internet I'm going to default to "everybody's, and especially mine, even if I wasn't involved" :)

-----

swombat 1849 days ago | link

As I understand it, axod offered financial incentives aplenty but freenode wasn't interested.

Freenode's position seems to be that they will never trust any third party, no matter what that third party does. The most oft-repeated argument on #freenode was not about the hassle of dealing with bad users (everyone, including axod, agreed with the sentiment of mibbit and freenode working together to resolve those), but that it was actually not possible for mibbit to do anything to resolve that problem.

I'm sure you don't like to hear that, but I sat on that channel for a long while reading what was being said, and Freenode were behaving like a bunch of power-tripping bureaucrats. Every time axod, or anyone else, asked "what can mibbit do, concretely, to make you happy?" the answer was either "make mibbit open-source" or "nothing", or, "axod should have discussed this with us a year ago, it's too late now".

It's a real shame for an IRC network with the legacy of freenode to behave like that. I had a lot of respect for freenode prior to this, but I don't have much left after today. The sad thing is it wouldn't take much effort on the part of freenode to regain that respect... so I'm hoping you and your freenode colleagues come to a saner decision and work with axod to resolve this in an amicable fashion.

-----

SohumB 1848 days ago | link

I sat on the same channel you did, and I came away with a fundamentally different impression. The "make mibbit OS" were either jokes or a precursor to explaining why they prefer their client.

There seems to be a bit of miscommunication between mibbit and freenode here, where freenode believes that they tried extensively over at least a year to resolve this with mibbit and mibbit says they had no clue. I'd certainly be suspicious and not necessarily feel welcome to forgiving immediately if something like that happened.

And as for trust - I don't know either group. But from the patient way in which the freenode staffers explained what was happening and their rationale to everyone who entered #freenode to demand their mibbit back for (I think) the better part of twelve hours, that leaves me with far more respect for them than for axod at the moment, assuming certain things about his actions fit together like it seems.

-----

daleharvey 1849 days ago | link

a contractual obligation is exactly the type of hassle I believe they are trying to avoid.

freenode deals with a lot of closed source and for profit projects, the idea that the ban is purely for those reasons is "very" far fetched.

the freenode admins have said multiple times that they will be happy to reverse their position as they have in the past

the entire problem seems to be down to a lack of communication between mibbit and freenode, and both sides have blamed each other for the miscommunication.

after witnessing axods attempt at communicating, and seeing freenode communicating find with a large number of other partners, Its fairly reasonable to assume axod needs to the communication issues sorted at his end.

-----

SohumB 1848 days ago | link

This is either deliberate FUD or an accidental misconstruing of what they said.

I'm not a freenode staffer, but I was in the channel while this discussion was ongoing. What they did say was that:

1) the WEBIRC protocol, which mibbit pushes heavily, is fundamentally not trustable unless you know exactly what code is running

2) there are additional incentives for a commercial enterprise to potentially abuse any level of trust given to it

3) that this discussion was a tangent from the actual issue, which was that mibbit has not been, for over a year, open to discussion and working with freenode.

Their own client is not less capable of preventing abuse, because they can integrate it into their network better (which I take to mean things like actually presenting a guaranteed IP address and similar things), which means that they can then reliably block abusive users using the standard IRC techniques.

-----

axod 1847 days ago | link

Networks differ massively on these points.

EFNet for example was more than happy to setup WEBIRC. So are hundreds of others. For Mibbit, it's the cleanest, least hassle solution. It needs no management. The networks own security handles everything. That is why it's recommended.

I'm really skeptical that abusing trust would be a good thing to do - if trust has been broken, networks can just ban you easily.

#3 I disagree with strongly. I have tried extremely hard to have an open dialog with freenode, to get details of any abuse, to get any email reports to abuse@mibbit.com or PM.

I'm working on new anti-abuse features for non-webirc networks that will hopefully help here.

-----

SohumB 1847 days ago | link

Networks differ massively on these points.

Of course. My intent with that post was not to get into a discussion about why Freenode was right or wrong in making their decision - like I said, I'm not a staffer, and I have no access to the information they presumably are making their decisions on.

My intent with that post was to point out that Freenode's reasons were significantly more nuanced than you claimed in your parent post, and to address your response to one of them using arguments that they, again, outlined while you were in the channel.

-----

sho 1848 days ago | link

I have no idea why you are being voted down. Your comments are useful and relevant. It's a disgrace that Mibbit is being given the benefit of the doubt here just because their founder is an HN member.

-----

Zev 1849 days ago | link

Sorry, but I have to disagree with you completely and stand beside Freenode's decision.

As someone who is an ircop on another network with a few thousand users that also blocks Mibbit, abuse is not a red herring at all.

The last time Mibbit was unbanned on the network, it was used repeatedly for users to evade channel bans and harass users. Implementing a non-standard protocol that only Mibbit seems to use is not a valid answer to this problem.

IMHO, its a sad day when a single, relatively new client (that displays ads/produces income for), feels that it is important enough for a network that has been around much longer to bend its policy to work around. And then have the gall to accuse the network of wanting to make a profit itself?

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

Implementing a non-standard protocol that only Mibbit seems to use is not a valid answer to this problem.

WEBIRC is the standard solution to this, and it existed long before Mibbit did. It's also about as simple and obvious as a protocol could be: the web server simply forwards the user's IP address on to the ircd at the start of a session.

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

>> "Implementing a non-standard protocol that only Mibbit seems to use is not a valid answer to this problem."

We currently have WEBIRC setup with 454 IRC networks, representing around 200k users. I hardly think that's a "non standard protocol that only mibbit seems to use" is it now. All modern IRC servers support it out of the box.

I don't think I indicated freenode was planning to make a profit out of their client, you'd have to ask them about that. I wish them all the luck.

This isn't about me, or money, etc. This is about them cutting off users, who used mibbit to connect to freenode. IMHO that's a bad decision, and not a nice open friendly thing to do.

It'd be like hackernews blocking opera users if some spam submissions were submitted by opera users.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

It'd be like hackernews blocking opera users if some spam submissions were submitted by opera users.

No, it would be like HackerNews blocking a 3rd party HN client that:

* Required that HackerNews trust the third party client service to provide user identity.

* Had a significantly higher level of abuse as compared to standard users.

* Required a disproportionate amount of resources to support for the given user base.

* (Least important) monetized HackerNews via advertisements.

-----

Zev 1849 days ago | link

Given there are thousands of IRC networks around, < 500 supporting the protocol is a drop in the sea. And many IRCD's need a plugin that doesn't come standard for it. Hardly out of the box. And by non-stanard, I simply meant it wasn't in IRC's RFC.

I'm not claiming Freenode was standing to make a profit from this; you did: "* It makes money" — I also mentioned that you stand to lose money if a major network doesn't let users use your client. I'm not claiming this is your motive for wanting people to use Mibbit. I don't know what you think. Just that from an outside perspective, its a possible thought.

And I don't see the Opera comparison. Opera doesn't force users to proxy through their own servers. Its a completely transparent tool, right out of the box. Users have to actively set up a proxy for Opera to use it. With Mibbit? It uses the proxy by default, no way around it for the users.

-----

pyre 1849 days ago | link

> I'm not claiming Freenode was standing to make a profit from this; you did: "* It makes money"

I think that you should re-read that unless you are saying he said that Freenode "Isn't open source" as well...

-----

froo 1849 days ago | link

And then have the gall to accuse the network of wanting to make a profit itself?

To be fair, I was the first one making that accusation (not axod) and I clearly indicated that it was a tinfoil hat moment - time will tell, but the banning of mibbit and the implementation of their own webchat client (well, currently a default installation of an open source client) is awfully convenient given axod wrote a post on mibbit's revenue only the day before.

-----

froo 1849 days ago | link

I know the "official" reason, but I'm curious if there's any correlation between the blocking of mibbit and axod's post about how much revenue mibbit was making here (http://axod.blogspot.com/2009/06/revenue-browser.html) - the timing is awfully suspicious.

I mean, a day after the post they "magically" have their own web client up that they would rather you use.

I had a look at the qwebirc client they implemented, default installation right now (looks like it was just thrown up) no ads yet, wondering how long before that changes?

EDIT - well it seems that in part some of the argument from freenode's perspective is about money.

  (00:44:02) axod: nenolod: and please explain what incentive I would have to falsify such information
  (00:44:17) nenolod: axod: assistance with ban evasion in exchange for money
  (00:44:26) axod: nenolod: seriouslly?
  (00:44:30) nenolod: axod: seriously.
  (00:44:33) axod: lol

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

Another fun quote:

<nenolod> jtrucks: because mibbit users are retards and they think mibbit is the only way

-----

Zev 1849 days ago | link

I've actually spoken to several users who found that to be true. Even if silly, from the point of view of someone who knows what IRC is. Which is far from everyone.

//edit: don't care much about karma, but I am curious as to how pointing out that not everyone knows what they're doing on IRC gets me downvoted.

-----

allenbrunson 1849 days ago | link

You are agreeing with someone who said "mibbit users are retards." That's not the kind of language that's encouraged around here.

-----

Zev 1849 days ago | link

Oh. Thanks for explaining. I didn't mean to imply that mibbit users are retarded. Just that they don't quite know (or care?) as much about IRC as other people do.

-----

axod 1847 days ago | link

I take offense at that. Do you have enough data to make that judgement? Out of the millions of people using Mibbit, you've done a survey and measured? Or is it just more likely that you'll notice if someone causing abuse is using mibbit?

-----

Zev 1847 days ago | link

Erm, might I suggest you reread what I said here, in this particular thread. Which amounted to saying that not all Mibbit users know or care much about IRC. Which is a very silly thing to be taking offense to, let alone demand to be proven.

-----

blueben 1848 days ago | link

Are you airing a legitimate complaint, or are you now simply embarking on a smear campaign to make them look bad and rally folks to your cause?

-----

axod 1847 days ago | link

I was simply providing another quote from the same user the parent quoted.

-----

SohumB 1848 days ago | link

You should probably point out here that nenolod was one of the non-freenode-staff members in #freenode at that point, presenting his personal opinion. It's about as germane to this discussion as me pulling up random person B's comment about how mibbit is <insert sleazy thing here>.

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

assistance with ban evasion in exchange for money

That is absurd.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Moving past the heated conjecture, the more accurate statement from a freenode staffer:

  njan: Xenos, for what it delivered, mibbit i) 
  disrupted a large number of our network users, and ii)
  used a disproportionate amount of staff time.

  njan: Xenos, we chose a solution that fixed those two
  problems - using staff time and disrupting our 50k users
  - whilst giving the mibbit users an alternative.

-----

swombat 1849 days ago | link

My nose hurts from time to time. Maybe I should cut it off.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Freenode doesn't need -- or have any responsibility to support -- Mibbit. Moreover, we've banned mibbit entirely from our channels without receiving any complaints or noticing any significant drop in channel traffic.

-----

swombat 1849 days ago | link

without receiving any complaints

That's a ridiculous statement. I was in the #freenode channel for a few hours, I saw many people (other than the people coming from #startups) who were logging in to ask why Mibbit wasn't working.

-----

froo 1849 days ago | link

without receiving any complaints

This is what you would call spin....

I too saw the same complaints.

-----

vollmond 1849 days ago | link

Not too mention, a large proportion of those who would complain now have no means to do so.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Other than the vast quantity of available desktop clients, as well as the now-available freenode web IRC chat?

-----

swombat 1849 days ago | link

May people who use Mibbit do so because they are sitting behind firewalls that do not allow IRC.

The Freenode client is freenode-specific, and only works with freenode. It also lacks a lot of Mibbit's features, from the sound of it.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Quite a few of my development peers sit behind such firewalls and yet can and do still connect using their desktop clients. It's not something we discuss, so I don't know what method they're using, but as a member of the community in question it's fairly readily assumed that you'd know how to handle such a situation. We're under absolutely no responsibility to provide "IRC accessibility" to all comers.

-----

pyre 1849 days ago | link

To rephrase things another way, would you ban mIRC if you determined that 100% of disruptive users used it as their client? Even though there are plenty of legitimate users of mIRC?

It seems more likely to me that there is some sort of objection to 'web clients' because desktop clients are the 'one true way' to access IRC. Note that I say this as someone that prefers to IRC from console clients like BitchX and irssi through a screen session.

I known plenty of people that have used IRC that don't 'know' what IRC really is other than how to use the graphical elements of their client to access things for the 'chat room'.

And in this case you are not 'providing' IRC accessibility. Mibbit is providing that. The only thing that you're doing is restricting accessibility by banning Mibbit. Now if Mibbit were banned by default on your IRCd and you had to 'grant access' to them you could argue the other case.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

If mIRC, by it's nature, resulted in a disproportionate maintenance cost as compared to other clients, then yes, I would seriously consider banning it. Mibbit requires additional support from Freenode: trust of its declared client IP addresses, and additional abuse support from the Freenode staff.

I wouldn't demand AOL expend any effort whatsoever to support my 3rd party AIM service without remuneration, and regardless of remuneration offered, it would remain their perogative to say "no".

Why is Freenode, as an independent market actor, not allowed the same prerogative? Is it because Freenode operates as a non-profit, while Mibbit is a small startup?

-----

froo 1849 days ago | link

Why is Freenode, as an independent market actor, not allowed the same prerogative? Is it because Freenode operates as a non-profit, while Mibbit is a small startup?

I'd suggest that freenode's arguments seem to be fairly hollow given that freenode as a network is populated by tech savvy users and if they want to cause strife on the network, then the client they use wont make much different, they will find a way.

I personally find it incredibly convenient that axod writes a post about mibbit's revenue that is posted to HN and then the next day, mibbit is banned from freenode but that's ok, freenode has implemented their own webchat client that you can use. Great timing no?

Given we've established that people trolling freenode will find a way to do so regardless, that could be construed as a little fishy, no? Especially since it's just a default installation of an open source client - it wouldn't surprise me if ads pop up on the freenode webchat client in the next few months.

I also find it interesting that even though axod was in channel asking the #freenode ops what he can do to fix the issues and the general response was "sorry, it's done now" - stonewalling him only lends weight to my argument.

Don't get me wrong, I'm all for freenode trying to make money to support their servers, but at least be transparent about it.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

I'd suggest that freenode's arguments seem to be fairly hollow given ...

The point is, isn't this entirely their perfectly reasonable prerogative as free actors? Given that my own minimal channel 'work-load' has increased due to Mibbit, I'm inclined to take their position at face value.

However, if I were to entertain the notion of a secret plot for IRC monetization, I still wouldn't begrudge them that choice.

... freenode as a network is populated by tech savvy users and if they want to cause strife on the network, then the client they use wont make much different, they will find a way.

Mibbit's user base is relatively self-selecting. I don't believe it's inconceivable that the Mibbit user base is much more inclined to cause strife.

Whenever I go hiking in a relatively populated area, I always am bemused at how litter and graffiti disappears just a mile or so down from the trail head -- it seems that anyone willing to leave behind beer cans and spraypaint trees is also generally unwilling to walk more than a couple miles to do it.

-----

pyre 1849 days ago | link

> However, if I were to entertain the notion of a secret plot for IRC monetization, I still wouldn't begrudge them that choice.

I think people are taking issue with them being secretive about it. "We're banning Mibbit users because they abuse our network" vs "We're banning Mibbit users because we want them to use our client instead so that we can make money" are a little different from each other. If the latter is true, then they should at least be open about it.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Openness is preferable, but there is absolutely no direct evidence to support the conclusion that they wish to monetize Freenode via web chat -- the timing is only circumstantial.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Our channels, not #freenode.

-----

swombat 1849 days ago | link

"Your honour, I thought he might object to being shot, but after I did it, he never ever raised the question! If that's not silent agreement, I don't know what is!"

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

If a project developer, active user, or someone else with genuine stake in the project community complained, we'd pay attention ... but nobody has, despite the numerous venues available to them to do so. Your honour.

It's not our responsibility to account for, be accountable to, or be concerned for outliers.

-----

simonw 1849 days ago | link

I'm a project developer (Django + other things), IRC has been blocked at my last two places of work and I've often used mibbit, which I found to be an excellent client - better than many desktop clients in fact. Please consider this a complaint.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Then if the Django IRC channel has banned Mibbit, I suggest you speak with them -- assuming Freenode decides that expending volunteer services to support a commercial service is a worthwhile venture.

Otherwise, there's the freenode web IRC interface.

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

You just said you would pay attention if someone "with a genuine stake in the project community complained". And then someone did, and you brushed him off.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

"Our channels". As I've said before, we've been forced to regularly ban Mibbit on our channels (as in, software projects with which I am involved). I simply don't represent freenode, or django, or web developers in general.

[edit]

I see Mibbit fans are downvoting any negative comments en masse, not to mention the vitriolic dialog with freenode staffers on IRC. Yeesh.

-----

patcito 1849 days ago | link

Same here http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=665661

-----

pygy 1849 days ago | link

I'd say paranoid.

-----

Tichy 1849 days ago | link

What is the official reason?

-----

froo 1849 days ago | link

People abusing mibbit webchat to cause strife

http://blog.freenode.net/2009/06/new-freenode-webchat-and-wh...

Honestly, freenode is loaded up with tech savvy users. This will solve nothing. If users want to cause strife on channels, the tool they use is inconsequential. Below are two scenario's off the top of my head.

Scenario #1 - people will be using proxies and using freenode's webchat client = banning mibbit was pointless

Scenario #2 - people will be using their own irc clients and using open proxies = banning mibbit was pointless

So banning of mibbit hasn't actually solved the problem, but like I theorised above, has the potential to funnel revenue to freenode and given the timing of axod's post about revenue, with the banning of mibbit only a day or so after followed by the awfully convenient default webchat installation that freenode put up, it smells a little fishy (even if it's tin foil hat territory, you still have to admit it's bad timing on freenodes part).

EDIT - Scenario #3 - lowtech, just reconnecting off your router to refresh your IP and connect from home = banning mibbit was pointless

-----

ken 1849 days ago | link

I think the tool required to access a service is pretty darned important in determining your audience. Case 1: September 1993 (AOL on USENET). Case 2: Hacker News (intentionally plain design compared to, e.g., Reddit or Digg).

Scenario #0: people will keep using mibbit, because it's convenient and what they used before, and harass IRC channels on other networks instead.

(Sure enough, freenode's web client looks like basically a teletype in a web browser, while Mibbit's is big and flashy and web 2.0-ish. It's the HN to Mibbit's Digg.)

-----

froo 1849 days ago | link

Ok, so you're suggesting that there is a correlation between how attractive a user interface is and the number of users/trolls?

Well then let's break it down to its most simplistic form, the Operating System, seeing as that affects every service.

How do you account for Windows and OSX, seeing as most of your trolls would come from Windows based machines and yet most people would agree that OSX has the superior/most attractive GUI?

Just curious.

-----

ken 1849 days ago | link

I think you're over-generalizing. I'm only claiming that interface has a big effect on behavior you see in a particular place, not how the behavior got there. I certainly don't believe (and didn't mean to imply) that seeing an "attractive" interface causes a behavior change in an individual.

I also disagree that comparing operating systems is "simplistic". What operating system a person is using today is based on a huge number of factors, of which "attractive" is but one tiny piece -- a far more complex issue than what web chat you use.

What you're observing is what I'd call the same effect. People are lazy about sticking with an interface they know. AOL opening up USENET meant a bunch of jerks could screw things up, using the same interface they'd had. Digg/Reddit predate HN, and the jerks there aren't going to learn a new interface to be jerks to a smaller crowd here. Similarly, you're not going to change OS (and with it, interface) easily, so other effects dominate, and I'd expect most jerks, overall, to be using the most popular OS, overall. I don't know if that's true, but it fits my mental model.

-----

froo 1849 days ago | link

Well then the effect you're describing has more to do with population density than interface?

When things start getting crowded, people start generally becoming rowdy - it seems to be human nature. You can have a small home party with 10-20 people and it's fine. Throw in a hundred gate crashers and it becomes a nightmare.

The thing with the internet is the anonymity that is afforded by such communities means that there is less of a barrier for people to become jerks. Look at YouTube or 4chan.

Youtube has a huge population and the comments are filled with volatile diatribe. Conversely, look at Vimeo - it's a much nicer interface, yet it doesn't have the same community issues that Youtube has.

Now let's look at 4chan. It has a simplistic user interface, but with extreme anonymity and a large enough population, it's the cesspool of the web.

I just don't think your "pretty interfaces = bad" argument has any merit.

Digg wasn't half bad when it FIRST came out, but as more people flocked to it, the quality went down. Ask a few of the old HNers and they'll argue the same about HN since it has grown in size, they argue that the quality has gone down. I mean, we see a thread complaining about it almost every other week it feels like.

-----

SohumB 1848 days ago | link

Old scenario - people are using mibbit to very easily banevade - crap.

Scenario #1 + #2 - the proxy will be banned or the user refused connection. There is no distinction because they can trust the code they're running to report the IP correctly. Scenario #3 - "ah crap, you mean I have to reset my router instead of just refreshing mibbit?"

From freenode.net/policy.shtml : freenode may block access to users whose IRC clients run on hosts with open proxies, IIS servers or other categories of software determined to present special risk to our server environment.

-----

SohumB 1848 days ago | link

nenolod is not a freenode staffer. The impression I got was that freenode felt they were going above and beyond in offering an alternative webchat to mibbit users, which they didn't need nor particularly want to do.

-----

swombat 1849 days ago | link

As I said in the previous thread before mariorz deleted his own submission:

This is completely stupid of Freenode. Shame on them.

Axod, how do you know it’s permanent? Have they made a statement?

-----

zitterbewegung 1849 days ago | link

Statement by freenode because of the block http://blog.freenode.net/2009/06/new-freenode-webchat-and-wh... Analysis: Seems like mibbit was being abused and it was difficult for freenode to combat the abuse. Freenode eventually just got fed up with all the time required to fix the problem. It was too easy to get on mibbit to evade a ban to screw with a channel.

-----

pygy 1849 days ago | link

They also claim that the communication and collaboration with Mibbit wasn't easy.

Direct link to their new web IRC client: http://webchat.freenode.net/

-----

sho 1849 days ago | link

Wow, that client is great! A lovely, clean design, written in Python, GPL2.

Damn, so many nice things written in Python .. guess it's time to learn it : /

-----

jodrellblank 1849 days ago | link

great!

"Disconnected from server: Connection to IRC server lost: Buffer overflow"

Mibbit has never done that to me...

-----

fishking 1849 days ago | link

seems to be a setting: https://bitbucket.org/slug/qwebirc/src/tip/config.py.example...

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

As someone who has been placed in the position of semi-regularly banning mibbit from freenode OSS project channels due to abusive users, I can't see how this is a bad thing.

The quality of user was exceptionally low, and "easy webchat" simply doesn't seem like a strong value proposition for the technical users that frequent the network.

-----

davidw 1849 days ago | link

> "easy webchat" simply doesn't seem like a strong value proposition for the technical users that frequent the network.

Which is why they saw to it to create their own web chat...

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Doesn't serve as counter argument for web chat providing strong value proposition, just that Freenode leveraged existing open source software to provide an alternative solution that they could directly manage.

http://blog.freenode.net/2009/06/new-freenode-webchat-and-wh...

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

In what way are they making it more secure? Mibbit already implemented the WEBIRC protocol - how does the Freenode client go further than that?

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Freenode manages their web client directly, which means that they can:

1) Manage it directly, immediately, and independently of any third party as to quickly respond to abuse.

2) Directly trust the web client's reporting of IP addresses, which is the primary form of unregistered user identity management on IRC.

3) Perform proxy detection on incoming web client connections, which they already use for non-web connections (http://freenode.net/faq.shtml#firewall)

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

(1) and (2) both boil-down to saying "we don't trust the operators of Mibbit to pass on the IP address accurately". Do you have examples of the IP address being inaccurate?

(3) makes no sense, assuming you do trust the IP address, so doesn't add anything more than (1) and (2). You can already perform proxy-detection if you have WEBIRC and you trust the reported IP.

-----

SohumB 1848 days ago | link

It's not a question of "they don't trust Mibbit", it's just basic security practice. Anyone, even a freenode staffer running his personal project, would not have that trust extended to them.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Why should freenode, a not-for-profit independent entity, be required to extend trust to a third party service and their reporting of user identity?

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

I don't see anyone requiring that, but publicly calling into question the integrity of Mibbit without offering any evidence that they cannot be trusted is really bad karma imho.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Freenode has absolutely no innate responsibility to extend trust to a third party such as Mibbit. I see no reason to judge them poorly for failing to do so, or how this reflects on Mibbit's integrity.

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

Do you know what it took to get WEBIRC support setup with irc.mozilla.org? Rizon? efnet? slashnet? I popped in and asked. It's the same on most Networks.

They don't have any responsibility to provide it, they can do what they like to their users. But I think their users liked it - which is why thousands of people used mibbit to connect to freenode.

Freenode clearly has a closed management culture, which is why they want complete control of everything. I don't think that makes for a great community.

-----

swombat 1849 days ago | link

Freenode, by their own definition (lifted from the google search result for "freenode"):

Provide a friendly interaction environment for project coordination and for the support of community projects.

Freenode, as a communication platform (and particularly as a self-described "friendly" environment) have a duty, to common sense and intelligence, to make reasonable efforts to encourage communication rather than stifle it.

Being willfully wooden-headed about this whole thing is not just wrong because of the unnecessary harm it causes, it's also self-contradictory.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

If AOL decided to proxy interested AIM users to Freenode, would it be Freenode's responsibility to provide the resources necessary to support those users as well?

What about Facebook? Google Talk?

As a member of several "community projects", I don't feel particularly slighted (and am, in fact, relieved due to decreased abuse) by the disconnection of Mibbit.

-----

pyre 1849 days ago | link

http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=665610

Apparently #perl found a way to get around this without banning all of Mibbit. Maybe others should take the time to put more than a "F* YOU!!" into this?

I'm curious as to how much time you've spend solving the problem vs. complaining about it in forums/channels... I can say that right now I have more respect for the #perl guys than you, and I'd never heard of Mibbit before this article...

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

What was the quality of user like for mIRC?

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

About the same as any other client that makes it difficult to mask your identity via open web proxies.

-----

mrtron 1849 days ago | link

Are you claiming mIRC made it difficult to use a proxy?

There has always been proxy settings available. I...know some people...that wrote scripts for mIRC that loaded thousands of bots on proxies. That was on an early Pentium with dialup too.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Are you claiming mIRC made it difficult to use a web proxy?

Since IRC traffic can't be conveyed via a web proxy, yes. =)

There has always been proxy settings available. I...know some people...that wrote scripts for mIRC that loaded thousands of bots on proxies. That was on an early Pentium with dialup too.

Absolutely, I used to abuse WinGate TCP proxies back in the day. Those eventually disappeared, and it's now much harder to find open TCP-capable (SOCKS, etc) proxies. To seal the deal, major IRC networks perform TCP proxy detection on incoming connections to check for open proxies operating on standard ports.

-----

Annointed 1825 days ago | link

This is the most stupid thing i've read in this entire thread. I suppose you practice phrenology too.

-----

sho 1849 days ago | link

Agreed. Maybe it's not very nice, but I kind of think that anyone incapable of installing a proper IRC client probably shouldn't be using IRC in the first place.

The situation on, say, the ruby-talk mailing list is analogous; whenever you see a really, really stupid question, check out the submitter - chances are it's through one of the web interfaces to the ML.

The necessity of installing and configuring an IRC client to use freenode is an example of a good barrier to entry.

-----

Jem 1849 days ago | link

Elitist cack.

I can think of several times I've used mibbit to pop in to #startups (or another channel on another network) because installing an IRC client just isn't possible (lack of admin rights, on someone else's computer, etc).

-----

sho 1849 days ago | link

"Elitist cack"

Not at all. It's like a short, basic aptitude test before you're able to join a recreational sports team, or maybe a driving test. Just shows that you know the ropes at least a bit, you have at least basic competence.

Remove that and people can just bomb in on anyone's conversation in real time, from any browser, no consequences, nothing. Is that really what you want?

I object to your use of the word "elitism". Someone's basic technical competence, and the effort they've put in to do something, is a pretty reliable guide to the quality of their contribution, whatever it might be. When I see someone has a free blog on wordpress.com or what not, I instantly assume they either do not care or do not know how to set up their own system. When I see someone with a hotmail address I assume they do not know better. And on irc, when I see someone using mibbit, I assume they do not know how - or are too lazy - to set up IRC.

If people can't put in this basic effort, why let them in? You can yell "elitism" all you want; I prefer to think of it as "rules of the club". Anyone can join the club, they just have to pass the first, very easy, test. What is wrong with that?

And I think your use case for the service, as described in your anecdote, is likely to be quite atypical. I doubt the majority of Mibbit users just happened to be using it because they were using someone else's computer. You are the exception to the rule.

-----

stcredzero 1849 days ago | link

Someone's basic technical competence, and the effort they've put in to do something, is a pretty reliable guide to the quality of their contribution, whatever it might be. When I see someone has a free blog on wordpress.com or what not, I instantly assume they either do not care or do not know how to set up their own system.

What about actually looking at their contribution and judging it on its own merits?

Isn't this just like judging someone's talk by how they look or judging a book by its cover? Isn't this the same principle as racial profiling? You take a factor which seems to have a correlation but which is incidental to what you're really trying to determine?

For that matter, isn't it like, "that new VM can't be that much better. Aren't our VM guys really smart?"

The really annoying thing about the Pointy Haired Bosses is their constant use of such heuristics in evaluating technology. It's when we see how their heuristics are maddeningly wrong when they dismay us the most.

I propose that we techies would be better served by eschewing such sloppy heuristics and actually evaluating technology and technical expertise. We have big brains, so we can just reserve judgment on the rest until we have actual evidence.

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

people can just bomb in on anyone's conversation in real time, from any browser, no consequences

This is rather misleading. Mibbit may be a browser-based client, but it does pass on the user's IP to the remote ircd, which means exactly the same protections exist as for any other irc client.

Incidentally, having personally written the software behind an irc network that's bigger than freenode (I wrote justin.tv's chat server, which has had a peak of more than 360k concurrent clients connected), I would trust Mibbit long before I would trust a bunch of other clients. MIRC, in particular, is plain nasty.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

This is rather misleading. Mibbit may be a browser-based client, but it does pass on the user's IP to the remote ircd, which means exactly the same protections exist as for any other irc client.

First, it's considerably easier to find open web proxies than it is to find IRC-capable proxies, and Freenode runs proxy detection to catch use of IRC-capable proxies.

Second, trusting Mibbit's IP address reporting is a tall order, equivalent to peering their IRC servers with Mibbit, as it would allow Mibbit to readily spoof basic user identity.

Incidentally, having personally written the software behind an irc network that's bigger than freenode (I wrote justin.tv's chat server, which has had a peak of more than 360k concurrent clients connected), I would trust Mibbit long before I would trust a bunch of other clients. MIRC, in particular, is plain nasty.

What 'trust' must be divested in end-user, per-user desktop IRC clients? Mibbit must be trusted to report user identity accurately, to not allow proxy connections, and to quickly respond to abuse while not causing freenode's volunteer's undue labor.

Most importantly, freenode is privately owned and managed, it's not a public service and has no responsibility to provide service to Mibbit, especially if Mibbit causes a disproportionately sized administrative headache.

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

...it would allow Mibbit to readily spoof basic user identity.

What conceivable reason would Mibbit have for doing that?

Mibbit must be trusted to ... not allow proxy connections

No, that's not true. Mibbit must be trusted merely to pass-on the correct IP. Then Freenode's existing proxy detection can handle the job of rejecting proxied connections.

You are publicly calling into question Mibbit's integrity here, and suggesting that there's an incentive to give Freenode false information about users' IP addresses. Why?

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

You are publicly calling into question Mibbit's integrity here, and suggesting that there's an incentive to give Freenode false information about users' IP addresses. Why?

Regardless of Mibbit's integrity -- of which I have no opinion, and am not calling into question -- freenode has absolutely no responsibility (contractual, moral, or otherwise) to extend their trust to any third party.

If Mibbit wishes to resolve the issue they can enter into a contract with Freenode to establish trust. Mibbit can provide a financial incentive and contractual guarantees, and in return Freenode can agree to extend Mibbit trust and administrative resources.

-----

sho 1849 days ago | link

"You are publicly calling into question Mibbit's integrity here"

I know nothing about Mibbit beyond their web page and their colourful representative here, but - it's not about the personal integrity of the founder, or whatever. Mibbit's whole business model is around advertising. The more page views, the more advertising, the more profit. They have no investment in any other metric. It is reasonable to assume Mibbit does whatever they can think of to boost their usage.

"suggesting that there's an incentive to give Freenode false information about users' IP addresses"

There is a clear commercial incentive to encourage usage of the service. If sending random IPs to Freenode boosts revenue, there would be an incentive to do that. That would be reprehensible, of course, but you can't say there's no incentive.

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

Incentive or not, some of us have integrity and honor and choose to play by the rules of what is right. Not what makes the most money.

-----

pyre 1849 days ago | link

If I have $1million there is incentive for people to shoot me in the head and take my money. I guess that means that I should hide away in the mountains as a hermit and shun society, because everyone that is part of the society has an incentive to screw me over.

-----

pyre 1849 days ago | link

Most of your arguments (throughout all the discussion threads) boil down to: 1. All the channels you help manage banned all Mibbit users due to abuse/problems. 2. Freenode _could possibly_ have IP addresses purposefully misreported by Mibbit to them, so they shouldn't have to trust them. 3. Freenode shouldn't be _forced_ to accept traffic/users from Mibbit.

My Responses: (1) You had a problem with Mibbit users that you seem to have solved. Why do you need to argue so passionately against Mibbit if it was so easy for you to solve? Did it take you hours and hours to figure out how to ban Mibbit users from your channels? There is a post by someone from #perl that says they even figured out how to extract the original user's IP and that they were able to get rid of most of the bad users by banning the default Mibbit prefix. That doesn't seem too hard to me (banning the nick prefix). Could you enlighten us as to why Mibbit made it a PITA to ban all Mibbit users from your channel?

(2) I don't see any claims that Freenode knows that Mibbit is misreporting its users' IP addresses. Whether or not they have incentive to do so is irrelevant because it does not even seem to be a stated reason behind Freenode's decision. Therefore presumably Freenode either believes what Mibbit reports or they don't think that it's a minor issue. In either case, I don't see how it should be a large part of this discussion. To further argue against your point, Freenode supports Tor. Tor's stated objective is to help users be anonymous. Should Freenode also ban all users from ISPs that allow them to reset their modems to get another dynamic IP address?

(3) I see lots of disagreement with Freenode's decision, and calls for reversal but I have yet to see someone claiming that Freenode should be required to never ban a certain client. Just because someone disagrees with a decision doesn't mean they believe that the person/group doesn't have a right to make a decision. Much in the same way that just because Freenode has the right to make this decision I am not required to like it.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Could you enlighten us as to why Mibbit made it a PITA to ban all Mibbit users from your channel?

We had to solve the problem, as did all other channels with this issue. You reference another poster who had similar issues. How many man hours were blown by individual channel managers dealing with Mibbit issues?

I don't see any claims that Freenode knows that Mibbit is misreporting its users' IP addresses. Whether or not they have incentive to do so is irrelevant because it does not even seem to be a stated reason behind Freenode's decision. Therefore presumably Freenode either believes what Mibbit reports or they don't think that it's a minor issue. In either case, I don't see how it should be a large part of this discussion. To further argue against your point, Freenode supports Tor. Tor's stated objective is to help users be anonymous. Should Freenode also ban all users from ISPs that allow them to reset their modems to get another dynamic IP address?

1) Whether or not Mibbit misrepresents IP addresses isn't really the issue. Why should Freenode have to adopt a policy of extending trust to a third party service? What about future services that also request similar access? Why is this Freenode's problem?

Additionally, this is relevant because extending trust would simplify freenode's handling of abuse, and is so the recommended (demanded?) course of action by Mibbit proponents.

2) Freenode supports Tor, but has banned Tor in the past, may do so again in the future, and had to expend extra effort to work with the EFF to support Tor.

Since Tor is intended (in no small part) to provide a service to users in fascist states, Freenode clearly felt this was worth addressing, but even still, have had to take draconian measures due to abuse in the past.

I see lots of disagreement with Freenode's decision, and calls for reversal but I have yet to see someone claiming that Freenode should be required to never ban a certain client. Just because someone disagrees with a decision doesn't mean they believe that the person/group doesn't have a right to make a decision. Much in the same way that just because Freenode has the right to make this decision I am not required to like it.

Simply put, I find the sense of entitlement to be audacious. Mibbit is an external service, has no claim to Freenode's services, and was causing Freenode a disproportionate amount of trouble.

I wouldn't expect or demand that Freenode accommodate peering AOL/AIM, Facebook, or any other external service -- why is Mibbit any different?

-----

menloparkbum 1849 days ago | link

Incidentally, having personally written the software behind an irc network that's bigger than freenode

From what I've read in your comments in the past, I'm assuming you used Twisted for the IRC backend. I was wondering, if you were starting this project today, would you still use Twisted? (apologies for veering off topic)

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

Yes, I used Twisted as the non-blocking network substrate for JTV chat. Actually in the initial implementation I used their IRC protocol library too, but that has been gradually dropped and replaced as more and more problems have been found. This is my general impression of Twisted actually - as an i/o core, it's rock-solid, but the protocol libraries are much more rough and many have clearly not been tested under significant load or with real-world messy data.

As for whether I would use it again... I think I'd be really tempted to use Clojure to be honest. Python is nice enough, but I still find myself missing a real Lisp (I did a lot of CL work before I joined JTV).

-----

sho 1849 days ago | link

Are you saying that in your real-world experience, Twisted can handle over 360K simultaneous connections?

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

Not on a single box, no - we run these machines in a cluster. Each chat machine scales up to a bit more than 80k simultaneous connections (each machine runs 8 processes, each of which can do about 10k simultaneous). There's some amount of IPC between all the chat processes in the cluster, but not too much, which means we can pretty much scale linearly just by adding hardware at this point.

-----

sho 1849 days ago | link

Hm. Still, 80k per box is nothing to sniff at, especially with Python.

I've been using Ruby's EventMachine, I can get it up to about C20k before it blows up, but that's local only, remains to be seen what proper connections will do. Haven't tried multiple processes yet. As for IPC I just dump everything into AMQP, whose fanout exchanges seem practically designed for IRC : D

Hm, anyway, thanks for the info. Really cool to hear python stretching that far.

-----

sho 1849 days ago | link

Well, I don't really know all the details behind Mibbit's implementation. Interesting that they pass on the IP. But the problem would then be that people can then use any of a number of proxies, etc, to get around that - Mibbit certainly does not have any incentive to block proxies, it's interested only in ad views. So it seems there would be a conflict of interest between Mibbit, interested in maximising users, and freenode, interested in maximising quality. Anyway, obviously freenode couldn't easily get around it, otherwise this news item wouldn't exist, right?

Funnily enough, I'm currently writing my own (toy) IRC server too, though I doubt it will (or could) ever serve the numbers you're talking about! Amazing that it has never really progressed beyond RFC2812, and even that was old news when it was written in 2000. I'd like to see IRC 2.0.

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

>> Mibbit certainly does not have any incentive to block proxies, it's interested only in ad views.

Mibbit blocks all known web proxies, tor, etc and has done for a long time. You really do think the worst of everyone don't you. I wonder what that says about you? :/

-----

SohumB 1848 days ago | link

You really do think the worst of everyone don't you. I wonder what that says about you?

That he's someone I'd hire to deal with network security.

-----

axod 1847 days ago | link

How can he trust you'd pay him?

-----

SohumB 1847 days ago | link

That's what contracts are for.

-----

menloparkbum 1849 days ago | link

You really do think the worst of everyone don't you. I wonder what that says about you? :/

That he's either Danish or Australian?

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Personally, I'd prefer to see reasoned responses to sho's comments, rather than sniping remarks ("elitist cack"), and downvoting into oblivion.

I tend to agree with sho, and alternative, reasoned viewpoints would be enlightening.

-----

Jem 1849 days ago | link

Right, because insinuating anyone who uses mibbit is incapable of installing an IRC client is not a sniping remark?

I have no problem with basic aptitude tests. I have no problem with restricting a community to the technically literate. What I have a problem with is the assumption that anyone choosing to use X over Y is some kind of moron.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Right, because insinuating anyone who uses mibbit is incapable of installing an IRC client is not a sniping remark?

No, simply that as an initial barrier to entry for a technical community, "browsing to a web page" isn't very difficult and serves poorly as a first-pass filter.

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

You should block email from webmail clients. I hear they're very easy to use.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Quite a few registration forms do block webmail addresses for reasons of abuse.

-----

axod 1847 days ago | link

Registration forms that were built in the 90s, agreed.

-----

ankhmoop 1846 days ago | link

No, I regularly find modern registration forms that won't accept mailinator or even hotmail addresses (and your service is probably more akin to mailinator than hotmail).

-----

pyre 1849 days ago | link

webmail clients are only blocked 'due to abuse' because it's easy to make bots to register fake email addresses. But even that is not fool-proof. I remember that back when AOL on dial-up was my internet connection, the 'master' account could create multiple 'child' accounts. So even the ISP in that case could allow you to create a 'fake' email for the purpose of registration.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

They're also blocked because of a high number of users (proportional to other e-mail services) registering accounts to troll anonymously.

-----

davidw 1849 days ago | link

* Going http is a nice way to get around firewalls. Sure, I can tunnel through SSH to my server, but that is a bit harder and not everyone has a server to tunnel to.

* Part of axod's idea, from what I gather, is simply to provide a nice chat system, that happens to have IRC as a backend. Would you say that people who can't install a proper nntp/smtp/whatever client shouldn't be allowed either? How 'bout twitter, to pick something popular? How about people who need help setting up an online store presence because they can't code it themselves? We owe the existence of this site to pg knocking down that particular barrier to entry.

Now, the question of abusive users is another one, and one that deserves to be taken seriously. But I have no idea about how axod handles that side of things.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

I wouldn't say shouldn't, but I would say that a slightly higher barrier to entry serves as a good first-pass filter for technically-oriented communities.

-----

davidw 1849 days ago | link

That's what I thought when mirc came out;-) People who didn't know how to use ircII were generally not as cool.

You need something better, though.

After all, it should be noted that discussion here is via a web based interface, and yet the conversation isn't that bad.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

You need something better, though. After all, it should be noted that discussion here is via a web based interface, and yet the conversation isn't that bad.

I agree, but IRC is different and arguably antiquated technology. It doesn't require registration, operates in real-time, has no concept of reputation or community moderation. It's difficult to manage, and services that accidentally facilitate abuse make it more so.

-----

abstractbill 1849 days ago | link

It doesn't require registration

More accurately, the protocol doesn't say anything about registration. It's dead simple to implement some form of registration outside of the IRC protocol, and then only allow registered users to connect.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

Yes, which is not something that many communities on freenode are particularly interested in doing.

-----

axod 1849 days ago | link

Channels were free to block mibbit, or require that users be identified to join the channel.

In any event, this was never about Mibbit being used for abuse. It's about Freenodes own agenda.

-----

ankhmoop 1849 days ago | link

We (as a channel) initially tried to avoid banning Mibbit wholesale, but that strategy failed. I imagine Freenode had similar issues at a larger scale. I can't say that any developers I associate with are unhappy that Mibbit was blocked.

Specifically, on a technical channel:

  <me> Looks like Mibbit was blocked
  <user1> so sick of mibbit luzers
  <user2> nice!
  <user3> mothafuckers who can't be bothered to
  use an IRC client probably don't need to be on IRC
  <user1> had some random moron join #scheme and then
  start /msging me to ask where I was from
It's difficult to find places to engage in community discussions with other high-quality developers without eventually being inundated with low-quality participants. The quoted response may be overtly rude, but the fact is, Mibbit brought exactly the type of users that we're on IRC (and freenode, specifically) to avoid.

-----

axod 1848 days ago | link

>> "We (as a channel) initially tried to avoid banning Mibbit wholesale, but that strategy failed."

Why did it fail? You can just ban mibbit if you like on the channel :/

I've used Mibbit as my primary client for a year. I take offense at your blanket statements about the "type of users that use mibbit".

-----

ankhmoop 1848 days ago | link

Why did it fail? You can just ban mibbit if you like on the channel :/

We didn't want to ban an entire service! Unfortunately, it wound up being the easiest way -- hence, our attempt to avoid doing so failed.

I've used Mibbit as my primary client for a year. I take offense at your blanket statements about the "type of users that use mibbit".

You are an outlier. The "type of users that use mibbit" were consistently abusive, difficult to deal with, and ultimately detrimental to our communities.

-----

axod 1848 days ago | link

I'm not an outlier, and I have quite a lot of data on the users of Mibbit. The vast majority are not abusive or detrimental to any community.

-----

ankhmoop 1846 days ago | link

That was not my experience, but you and I probably have differing opinions of "detrimental", and I'm not sure how you would correlate abuse or "community detriment" with your data.

We tend to be patient with individuals (even semi-abusive ones) before resorting to crude methods such as banning.

-----

pygy 1849 days ago | link

Just remove Freenode from the drop down menu and have people to connect manually using the /server and /newserver commands.

You'll get rid of all uneducated trolls. The educated ones may be the worst kind, but that's another matter.

-----

stcredzero 1849 days ago | link

The necessity of installing and configuring an IRC client to use freenode is an example of a good barrier to entry.

Doesn't strike me as good enough of a barrier. Then you still get a lot of idiots who think they are elite just because they can set up a client. Not sure that's improved the situation that much.

-----

More



Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | Bookmarklet | DMCA | News News | Bugs and Feature Requests | Y Combinator | Apply | Library | Contact

Search: