[Mailman-Users] creating hidden field to stop bot spam subscriptionrequest

Mark Sapiro mark at msapiro.net
Fri Dec 14 18:52:42 CET 2012

The League CA Cities wrote:
>some of my list are being spammed with bot subscription request. I am
>looking for a way to add a hidden field to the subscription page of each
>list that a bot would see but a human user will not.
>I would like to have Mailman automatically drop any subscription request
>that has the hidden field fill out.

This is not a solution to the problem you face. What you want is a
hidden field in the form that contains secret data the bot doesn't
know. Then you reject the request if the form comes back without the

None of these methods is foolproof as the subscribe form is public, so
the bot can always retrieve it first, but the hope is that it won't.

See the bug report at <https://bugs.launchpad.net/mailman/+bug/1082746>
and the list threads linked therefrom.

Also, see the "fix" at

>below is the subscription area for the list and I have added the subject
>field. the subject field is what i would like to hide and have drop the

I don't think there is a way in HTML to do what you envision, but you
can implement the above "fix" and as long as you are using the
subscribe form on Mailman's listinfo page, it will work. Whether it
will be effective at stopping bot subscription requests is a separate
question. See the threads linked from the bug report.

Mark Sapiro <mark at msapiro.net>        The highway is for gamblers,
San Francisco Bay Area, California    better use your sense - B. Dylan

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