Soften "Account temporarily blocked" message?

I use auto block first post regex with a value of https?:// in order to prevent paid spammers from posting links - the idea is that moderators would approve or reject the message from the queue, per the description of that setting:

Case insensitive regex that if passed will cause first post by user to be blocked and sent to approval queue.

What happens is that legit users receive a scary message that they have been blocked:

This is an automated message from Quantified Self Forum to inform you that your account has been temporarily blocked as a precautionary measure.

and there’s no follow-up email once their first post has been approved.

  1. Would a follow-up message after approval help?
  2. Would it make sense to soften the language in that warning message, e.g. “We’re reviewing your post” (instead of “You’ve been blocked”, bad dog)?
  3. Is there a better way of achieving what I want, namely moderating any first messages that contain links?

There is a followup PM when the account is unblocked. Are you never unblocking their account?

Never saw a prompt or other mechanism to explicitly unblock the user - as far as I can remember. They don’t appear at /admin/users/list/blocked, and Blocked is false in the admin page for that user.

However, I do see at /admin/logs/staff_action_logs that I have apparently unblocked the user a day ago. I don’t recall doing that though - can unblocking be a side effect of some other admin operation?

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After a few more new users complaining, I think the problem is the timing between the user posting a new message with a link, and an admin approving their message. Since we only have one admin, during that time window, the new user gets a message from Discourse that their account has been blocked, which creates a very negative first impression.

I would like to suggest softening the message from “Account temporarily blocked” to something along the lines of

“Thank you for joining our community! To keep spammers out, we’re reviewing the first message posted by new users. If you’re not a spammer, we’ll approve your account shortly.”


I do like the softer message, but “automatic” needs to be in there somewhere. Your message sounds like someone is actively reviewing the first message, not that the system has flagged the message, and alerted someone to review it.

Given how often it comes up, I can definitely support softening it a bit further – but remember this message is also sent when staff manually blocks an account, so the welcome new user bit isn’t necessarily correct.

Here’s what I have now:

Account temporarily on hold

This is an automated message from %{site_name} to let you know that your account has been temporarily placed on hold as a precautionary measure.

Please continue to browse, but you won’t be able to reply or create topics until a staff member reviews your most recent posts. We apologize for the inconvenience.

For additional guidance, refer to our community guidelines.


Low priority, long term, I would like the whole flow reworked

  • if I post something and it is on hold, I should still be able to find it, see it, and edit it

  • trusted users should be able to see the content, if n tl2 users say it is good, it is probably good