How I defeated mention spammers on Discord

I still remember the exact moment where I decided to create my bot called no-mention-spam. I woke up one morning and on one server I was on, I had 4110 mentions, and they were still going up. Thankful that I wasn’t getting these notifications on my phone in the middle of the night, I opened the server to find that it was being spammed by a couple of user accounts, each sending messages as fast as they could, at about 95 mentions per message. There was no moderator online at the time - they came online an hour after I had, finally banning and purging the spammer and clearing out their messages. But that day, the server was simply swamped with people wondering why they had so many mentions. It was absolute chaos, and it had to be stopped.

I thought to myself that it couldn’t be _so_ difficult to detect and eliminate this spam, right? so I did just that : I created a bot from literally 14 lines of code, pushed it to my host, and within a day I was on over 20 servers. All the bot did was ban anyone that sent more than 25 mentions in a single message. And holy crap did it work. Dozens of spam accounts started getting immediately banned from the servers I was on, and word spread that the method was effective and simple. But of course, spammers aren’t completely stupid, they’re just assholes, right? So they reduced their spam to 20 mentions per message, thinking that would work. Yeaaaaaah, no. After my initial commit, I immediately started improving on the base code that I had, and slowly turned no-mention-spam into a lean, mean, anti-mention machine. After a few months I had a configurable, precise bot that would take action on mentions over many different messages and I was on almost 1500 servers, protecting the masses. I still remember having a conversation with one of the spam accounts, wondering what could possibly motivate someone to do this. Apparently, it was some gobbledygook about politics and freedom of speech or whatever the hell. I didn’t learn anything that day, except that these spammers were really, really pissed at me. I had reduced their 5700-mentions-per-minute capacity all the way down to “get banned after 10 mentions” and they were really mad that I wouldn’t just let them spread their crap all over my favourite servers. All good things must come to an end however, and after 6 months I realized that I was barely getting one ban every couple of weeks, and yet I kept getting emails, messages and issues sent to me by people who didn’t understand how the bot worked. Basically, I was getting almost no real action but had to do a lot of management. I then decided to simply delete the bot, because it had become useless and an annoyance to maintain. I’m still proud of my accomplishment which include creating a simple yet powerful antispam bot, as well as massively pissing off idiots who would use these tactics to further some weird-ass political agenda. Lemme pat myself on the back, here. Interested in the end result? It’s on Github! Oh and the latest version is built on the Komada framework, too ;)