Bioware on Squelch Abuse in SWTOR

Apparently some guilds in SWTOR use something called squelch abuse. The squelch system works as an anti-spamming system,  that automatically revokes all chat/mail privileges for a player if someone were to send out the same message repetitively – Think credit sellers etc. This system has also been expanded to reporting spam, and apparently people are coordinating to abuse the system to report non-spammers of spamming to trigger the system to grief players they don’t like.

Eric Musco went on the forums to post Bioware’s stance on it:

Sucks to be Squelched | 03.21.2016, 12:59 PM

Hey folks,

Let’s talk a little bit about our squelch system that is in the game. This system was implemented quite some time ago as a method for players to not only avoid filling up their /ignore list, but to also help in getting a lot of those pesky Credit Sellers out of chat. This has been very successful for us since its implementation as we have experienced a dramatic drop in this type of chat spam. Please continue to report Credit Sellers and any other spammers you encounter as it is helping!

Lately, we’ve been receiving reports of this system being abused by players. Typically, the squelch abuse is in the form of Guild members targeting individual players or anyone in a rival Guild and deliberately impacting their game play. We take these type of abuses very seriously and as with any exploit, we will be taking appropriate action against anyone who participates. Depending on the severity of the abuse, action includes everything from warnings and suspension time to account closure. Please note, if this action is taken by a Guild, we will be particularly tough on Guild Masters and Guild Officers who coordinate, participate, or simply do not stop their Guild members from abusing the squelch system.

If you have been on the receiving end, what you must not do is retaliate! If you do, you have added yourself to the list of participants and you are putting your account at risk. If someone, or a group of users, has used squelch in an abusive way against you please file a detailed report with Customer Support. They will investigate and take the necessary action(s).
With all of this in mind, we are constantly looking at ways to improve this functionality. In the meantime, please use it wisely against spammers and advertisers/credit sellers, but please don’t ruin the game play of legitimate players.