So in conclusion, the solution I found best at dealing with abusive users is to create funny, sarcastic or sassy responses to their messages rather than banning them altogether.
It’s actually quite fun to try and come up with interesting responses to abuse and insults.
Lessons learned I have a Santa Claus chatbot which gets all kinds of abuse each December.
My first chatbot was a six year old teddy bear and even that got a load of sexual attention!
After I had implemented this system, I soon saw lots of people being banned and the quality of the chatlogs increased dramatically.
If someone abuses Mitsuku, they are warned five times with a siren before given a ban for a few days, which is hopefully enough time for them to cool down a little.
Now if I see abuse in logs, I just skip over them and move onto the next.
With hundreds of thousands of visitors talking to Mitsuku each day, it means nothing to me to lose a few hardcore abusers and I suppose that if these people are being abusive towards a computer, at least they are leaving a real person alone.
If anyone was being genuinely mean, her sarcastic replies often shocked them and many suddenly started being friendlier towards her: As a bonus, people were sharing Mitsuku on various internet forums, as it was fairly unique for a bot to stand up for itself.
I never expect people to say please and thank you to Mitsuku but it’s nice to see them treat my work with at least a little respect.