Well... i think there should be somekind of "new member" page that prevents people from spamming the board! Chatbots and Spambots can only post something in that thread. And without approval of a "good post" never enter the rest of the site! After 1 good post they will have access to the stuff normal users can go... Or isn't this a good plan?
+Rep B4rtj4h and yep, at the moment we use what we call "trigger words" which is a list of words and characters that spammers most often use which are updated daily as new spammers spam the Forum.
What happens is when a new user makes a post containing one of these (for example, the "@" character found in e-mails or the word "credit" such as in "credit cards" spam) then it automatically flags their post to the moderation queue until it can be reviewed by the Staff before being posted live.
What usually happens then is the spam posts are deleted and the bots banned so that none of it reaches the Forum, but occasionally some does so then we just add the new ones to the list. That system in combination with our DupeIP detection (so that they can't register multiple accounts from the same IP) and registration requiring captcha and e-mail confirmation filters out most of the junk from the Forum.
Yep, +Rep... and speaking of engines we also are going to be working later this week or this coming weekend (as time permits) on adding the mainpage news article database to the Forum search engine so that users can select to search within "News Articles" for what they are seeking instead of only the Forum posts.
As usual, I reckon you should do what is best to keep the admin behind the scenes to a minimum without losing the mainstream news. I am happy with your decision to remove the member news section if it will make yours and CJPC's task easier.