Hey, TNT. So I know that in the last editorial, you mentioned there is a known issue of bots causing lag on the site, which can cause glitches. That's bad. We all have been experiencing the captcha security that was implemented this week. For the first few minutes, I totally understood why you guys did it. But now I'm realizing how much work it takes to use the captcha every. single. time. I want to view a pet's lookup or a userlookup. It's A LOT! The inconvenience just makes me want to stop doing certain things on the site, which stinks. Are the captchas permanent? What's going to happen? ~ gameboyknight
Ideally, no, they aren't permanent. If/when we feel confident that taking them off won't set the bots off again, they'll be gone faster before you can wave them goodbye. But for now, all we know for sure is that they've made a huge impact in stopping these bots from running rampant on those pages, causing issues and lag, and essentially collecting lots of information about your accounts, which is bad (for inactive and active accounts, despite some popular beliefs).
Now, we know it's a lot, and we're sorry about that - trust us we are. It's been months and months of working on the backend to try to find solutions to prevent this, but we finally hit a point where it wasn't an option anymore. It was taking members of support, programming and server teams to work constantly on blocking these programs, freezing the accounts they were using (whether it was their accounts or not) and blocking the IPs these were coming from (which is also very not ideal, because IPs aren't permanent, and can result in legitimate users being IP blocked for reasons that have nothing to do with them).
Now as for the every single time part, we've had a lot of requests to make it less frequent, and we feel ya, but part of what makes this type of captcha so effective in stopping those programs is because there is no bypassing it. They can adapt to limits or timers, and often the method used to "remember" when you've already completed a captcha recently or in that session can be easily bypassed. The way these things are actually effective is when they're all or nothing, so unfortunately we had to go with all :(