Stewards' noticeboard/Archives/2019-10

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Requests for comment/Site-wide administrator abuse and WP:PILLARS violations on the Croatian Wikipedia

A proposal about hrwiki that would involve stewards. --Rschen7754 04:43, 17 October 2019 (UTC)

Examples of how you communicate on wiki

The Editing newsletter contains a request from the mw:Editing team about the new mw:Talk pages project. They want examples of useful discussions. It seems to me that what Stewards and global sysops need is not necessarily what a typical English-only Wikipedia editor needs. Could you please add an example of a good or bad discussion experience to mw:Topic:V8d91yh8gcg404dj? For example, you might remember a time when you did this, and he did that, and it worked well (or, maybe it was a big problem). They need to know what your needs are.

Thanks, Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 18:49, 17 October 2019 (UTC)

There's been some RfC's that are made a bit hard to follow by every message being repeated in multiple language translations under the original; I don't have an example off of the top of my head though. Vermont (talk) 19:01, 17 October 2019 (UTC)
What an irony, for me bad discussion experience is to have to use Flow. </grump> --Base (talk) 19:52, 17 October 2019 (UTC)

En.wiki ACE 2019 scrutineers

en:w:WP:ACE2019 is coming up and we need 3 stewards who do not have en.wiki as their home wiki and who did not serve as scrutineers last year to volunteer. The election starts in about month and scrutineering will begin after it ends on 2 December 2019. For the ACE election commission, TonyBallioni (talk) 18:54, 19 October 2019 (UTC)

I have done this before and I can help you again Mardetanha talk 10:06, 22 October 2019 (UTC)
I can also help if needed --Shanmugamp7 (talk) 17:42, 22 October 2019 (UTC)
been there, done that. I can help, einsbor talk 18:07, 22 October 2019 (UTC)

Hello @TonyBallioni: can you please explain why "who did not serve as scrutineers last year to volunteer"? --Alaa :)..! 14:36, 23 October 2019 (UTC)

Hi, Alaa. We try to have a different group of stewards from the last year do it per our local process. It looks like Mardetanha, revi, and you did it last year, so unfortunately Mardetanha shouldn’t be one this year. If we could get one more volunteer to replace him, I’d appreciate it :) pinging the other commissioners, Primefac and Vanamonde93. TonyBallioni (talk) 14:43, 23 October 2019 (UTC)
I can help. --Base (talk) 15:26, 23 October 2019 (UTC)
Looks good. I’ll let our ArbCom know so they appoint you all local CUs. TonyBallioni (talk) 15:44, 23 October 2019 (UTC)

Russian spam on the Konkani Wikipedia

I am a temporary administrator on the Konkani Wikipedia. I have noticed a phenomenon where in from time to time there are spam topics created on talk pages in Russian (on the Konkani Wikipedia, the talk pages are in Structured Discussions - formerly Flow - format by default). Whenever I come across these topics, I delete them immediately. Is it possible that even though we are deleting the topics, the spammers are somehow still able to take advantage of Standard Discussion topics for their communication? Do we need to take some further steps in this matter? For example, I noticed that even after we delete the topic, the title of the topic is still visible in the deletion summary. Perhaps we need to stop displaying the title of a deleted topic?

Following are some examples of the spam topics:

The Discoverer (talk) 05:39, 15 October 2019 (UTC)

@The Discoverer: Best you can do locally is write a spam filter or two to block it. Hard to easily stop such additions globally without severe consequences.  — billinghurst sDrewth 12:09, 15 October 2019 (UTC)
Thanks, @Billinghurst:, I'll do that. Do you have any pointers on what criteria for filtering would be suitable in this case? The Discoverer (talk) 07:49, 19 October 2019 (UTC)
@The Discoverer: Flow namespace isn't my speciality for filters. Systemwise, I would suggest starting with
  • Filter group: Flow;
  • user_age==0
  • page_id==0
Looking at mw:Extension:AbuseFilter/Rules_format gives some Board type options, or use the namespace specifically. Then you will need to look at what is common among the words, or simply Cyrillic characters. Hard to give that advice. You will need to work out whether you think that it is real people, who will ignore warnings, or bots, who tend to not edit through warnings. Suggest put it into test first to see the value.  — billinghurst sDrewth 09:24, 19 October 2019 (UTC)
Thanks, @Billinghurst:, I'll work on this. The Discoverer (talk) 04:11, 22 October 2019 (UTC)
Billinghurst, I have studied the instances of spam, but since I'm not well-versed with writing abuse filters, please could you help by writing a local filter with the following conditions?
  • Filter group: Flow
  • user_age==0 (Unregistered editors)
  • board_namespace==3 (User talk pages)
  • It should check that at least 40% of the text should be Cyrillic characters
It appears that we are dealing with real people and not bots, therefore, warnings will not be sufficient.
I have also noticed that at least a couple of the IP addresses have been reported as forum spammers, so perhaps later on, if necessary, we can create a separate filter using sfs_blocked that checks whether the IP address is blocked using the stopforumspam.com list and more stringent criteria regarding the contents.
Thanks for your help, The Discoverer (talk) 04:33, 29 October 2019 (UTC)
The Discoverer, English Wikipedia, Meta, and Commons all rejected flow and demanded it be uninstalled. This led to Flow being uninstalled from all wikis were it was not yet active. It also resulted in a MW:Talk pages consultation 2019, for the Community and Foundation to agree on plan for the future. The result was to terminate any new Flow deployments, and initiate a project to upgrade existing Talk pages instead. Flow is will still be "maintained" for now, but eventually Flow is will have to be phased out completely. You might want to open a discussion on Konkani Wikipedia to see if the community wants to simply eliminate the Flow boards now. That would of course solve any Flow-spam, chuckle. Alsee (talk) 00:38, 31 October 2019 (UTC)
Stop spreading FUD about Flow, VE etc... --Wargo (talk) 19:00, 13 November 2019 (UTC)

Community consultation on partial bans

In about ~40 hours, the ongoing WMF consultation on Partial Bans will be closed. Some steward might choose to step up to close the proceedings and draft a summary. Winged Blades of Godric (talk) 04:39, 29 October 2019 (UTC)

previous discussion. I will bug stewards-l, but I can't guarantee if anyone will volunteer. — regards, Revi 05:03, 29 October 2019 (UTC)
Thanks, Winged Blades of Godric (talk) 05:08, 30 October 2019 (UTC)
The consultation is now closed. There's a note from the WMF saying, "If the community has not found a Steward to close the consultation by [November 12], we will close it." --Yair rand (talk) 20:17, 30 October 2019 (UTC)
I suggest special attention to be paid to any divergence between the responses to the RFC and the assumptions implied by whomever drafted the questions. A consensus is a summary of the responses, regardless of any leading questions or drafting issues. In particular I believe quite a few respondents were less concerned with the 'temporary' or 'partial' issue than the issue of T&S overstepping the bounds cases they are supposed to handle. Alsee (talk) 00:18, 31 October 2019 (UTC)
Sitrep: nobody has volunteered so far. (And no I am not going to do it.) — regards, Revi 02:20, 31 October 2019 (UTC)
An outside comment, but it might be better to get a panel of three stewards to close so it doesn't all fall on one steward. --Rschen7754 06:07, 31 October 2019 (UTC)
It seems that it's virtually impossible to find one steward willing to see this, finding 3 would be just impossible. — regards, Revi 18:59, 31 October 2019 (UTC)

I posted Steward requests/Miscellaneous#Summarize community consultation on office actions before I saw this section, but my question is, why does it have to be closed by a steward? Are there any reasons that an uninvolved Meta admin or 'crat would not be sufficient? There is no requirement in policy I can find stating that only stewards can close community consultations. Imposing such a requirement just makes it more likely that the Foundation would take it upon themselves to do it, and I have no confidence that they will not continue their attempt to spin and manipulate the discussion.

If any steward agrees that one or more uninvolved meta admins would be sufficient to summarize the discussion, would you please move my request from SRM to RFH? EllenCT (talk) 17:06, 31 October 2019 (UTC)

We didn't ask to be the closer, and (seems) nobody cares about this. You should ask TnS if they'd accept adminz. (For the record, I neither agree nor disagree with you, I just don't care.) — regards, Revi 18:59, 31 October 2019 (UTC)
I can't blame you for not wanting to go near it, as I said in my question about whether there would be objections to an uninvolved admin closing summary. EllenCT (talk) 19:49, 31 October 2019 (UTC)

I have asked for at least one admin or 'crat to summarize, without regard to the WMF's opinion on the question. EllenCT (talk) 20:01, 31 October 2019 (UTC)

  • The deadline is today. I'd recommend any individual steward go ahead and close it. --Yair rand (talk) 04:27, 12 November 2019 (UTC)

I asked for an extension to try to find anyone to close it. T&S said until next week (2019-11-18) on Thursday, 14th Nov. They themselves recommend removing Partial and Temporary bans. I can also understand no one really wanting to go near that, and I feel I am not qualified to close the consultation myself either given that I have participated. I also feel this is not a single person job considering it is complex. Notwithstanding my personal opinion is that the majority of the participants in the consultation do not agree with partial and/or temporary office actions and so I also recommend its removal. —MarcoAurelio (talk) 13:24, 16 November 2019 (UTC)