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Old April 27th, 2010, 02:22 PM   #1 (permalink)
Phases
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Default Thread Subscriptions Purged

Some of you may have noticed your thread subscriptions instantly disappeared. Yes, this did indeed happen - and not just to you.

Some of you may also be aware of the email problem we are having - as well as site stability.

Rob and I made the command decision to purge subscriptions, yesterday. There is a lot that ties into this but here is the short rundown of why:

- We are having a massive email delivery problem due to being listed on on various spam/black lists. When emails bounce, this digs us deeper into the hole.

- Our server(s) are getting hammered from various angles, one being the TONS and TONS of emails we send out every minute. Every second, literally. Largely because of....

- There were just short of 200,000 subscriptions. Almost all were subscriptions made unintentionally because we have had the "instant email notification auto-subscribe" subscription model on by default for the past 2 years. We didn't intend to do that. Holy-whoops! Many of these users have moved on, email accounts had changed, etc. So, when Joe Shmoe would come on here and post on a thread that's a few months old or whatever - ten emails would shoot out. Half would bounce back and harm our spam list ratings. Half of what made it would get hit with "Mark as spam", etc etc. Now imagine what it is like when a spambot hits 20 threads before we get to it. And then when the end user sees that quoted spam in their inbox, coming from us.

So we did what we did. We made the choice, gritted our teeth, and clicked "purge". This helps with both the email delivery problem as well as site stability seeings how now it is doing that much less work. We DO apologize for the inconvenience. We know this is bad for some of you. We did it because we know for MOST people it's not a big deal or won't even be noticed. And for those it is, the subscriptions can be rebuilt. The trade off was worth it in this particular case. Please bear with us while we try to work though the problems we are having.

We chose to not notify users on the change because:

- Sending out emails to all is obviously not something we can do at the moment, we'd instantly be having a harder time trying to fix our email delivery problem seeings how most would bounce. Part of the reason we want this fixed so bad is not just because of all the incomplete registrations, but because we can't send mass emails ATM.

- Sending out a mass PM wouldn't work because for a good while we had it set by default to email you when you got a PM. I'm not sure how many of these there are.

- We talked about posting a thread to warn, but given the pressure we were and are under to relieve all the stress we can, didn't want to post something only xxx people would see while having to wait 24 hours or whatever - with only x even caring.

We're not QUITE done. We still have to get one of our guys to run a SQL query to reset all the instant subscription/notifications back to "none" by default. (We'd do it ourselves but we're skeeeeeeered). This *shouldn't* affect any subscriptions you set back up, I guess it kinda depends. I will post here when completed, or if we decide not to do it.

(Side note, we HAVE turned it off for future account creations.)

Also.. If you have subscriptions we want to set back up but are unsure how to easily find them - start with reviewing your post history to see what all you've been posting on. You can alter your subscription model in User CP.

Sorry again for the inconvenience everyone, and the delay on this post. I meant to post this yesterday and it slipped through the cracks.
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Last edited by Phases; April 27th, 2010 at 02:30 PM.
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