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Talk:IP Editing: Privacy Enhancement and Abuse Mitigation/Archives/2023-07

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Range checks for contributions

Will trusted non-CheckUsers be able to view all contributions from temporary accounts on a certain IP range? This would be useful for a cookie-clearer with a somewhat dynamic IP, which I imagine would be common among LTAs. —‍Mdaniels5757 (talk • contribs) 01:50, 10 July 2023 (UTC)

This is a feature we are actively discussing. It feels like an important feature to help fight abuse and keep spam off the platform. We'll include our plans for this feature in our next update.-- NKohli (WMF) (talk) 20:32, 25 July 2023 (UTC)

What is this nonsense?

This has no benefits, and effectively makes vandalism easier to hide. This screams superprotect. LilianaUwU (talk / contribs) 22:41, 9 July 2023 (UTC)

Elaborating on my "superprotect" comment: the IP masking thing seems like it is forced upon the community, just like whatever led to superprotect itself. I get that there are good reasons why to do so, though. Basically, my main thing is anti-vandalism and it seems like this would make my thing much harder to do. LilianaUwU (talk / contribs) 00:36, 21 July 2023 (UTC)
Hey @LilianaUwU, thank you for elaborating on the first comment. Actually, thanks for both of these. I'm familiar with the context (chat on Discord) and this helps me understand your line of thinking.
I'd like to spend some time on our documentation to make sure few people (saying "no one" would be unrealistic ;) would have similar first impression. I'll try to put more focus on the fact that something needs to be done for legal reasons. I hope that after that change, it will be clearer why we're doing this.
Would it be possible for you to give more detailed arguments why you feel like it'd make your anti-vandalism work much harder? Thanks in advance! SGrabarczuk (WMF) (talk) 12:33, 28 July 2023 (UTC)
@SGrabarczuk (WMF) I believe IP masking would make my anti-vandalism work harder due to how it seems like a LTA that will IP hop will get a new account each time. Granted, it won't make it much harder, but in cases like Mdaniels5757 summed up below me, a cookie clearer with a dynamic IP would make it somewhat harder. LilianaUwU (talk / contribs) 03:28, 29 July 2023 (UTC)
BTW In my opinion, ultimately, the local community can decide to use the IP masking feature or ban all IP users from editing. However, due to legal reasons, it is impossible to do nothing and keep the IP unmasked. Thanks. SCP-2000 13:58, 28 July 2023 (UTC)
Tickets about banning IP editing are currently declined on Phabricator, and banning IP editing is listed as a prohibited change at Limits to configuration changes#Prohibited changes. So the idea that wikis can just willy nilly ban IP editing as a way to deal with IP masking may be a bit too simple. Although that could change if there is a backlash against IP masking. –Novem Linguae (talk) 14:08, 28 July 2023 (UTC)
@Novem Linguae FWIW at the bottom of the ticket you linked, it says that ptwiki does ban IP editing of mainspace via an abuse filter per consensus; the configuration is not changed, but the effect stays the same. —‍Mdaniels5757 (talk • contribs) 19:47, 28 July 2023 (UTC)
Yes, I know they're working around it with two scripts, an edit filter, and IP range blocks, but that's a bit complicated. –Novem Linguae (talk) 21:17, 28 July 2023 (UTC)

IP Info

How is IP Info going? While I was far from the most avid tester, I did give it a few goes in both admin (now, I guess that would be "IP-masking cleared" and non-admin modes. I backed the three pieces of listed feedback as accurate. I'd also say that the non-admin version provided very little information of any practical use, regardless of its actual usefulness. Is Spur being responsive? What other additions are being considered? Cheers. Nosebagbear (talk) 16:29, 30 July 2023 (UTC)

I agree that the non-admin version (which I see on enwiki) is much less useful than the admin version (which I see on Commons). With the non-admin version I see myself turning to additional tools ~80% of the time (geolocation, WHOIS, and Spur), as opposed to about ~50% of the time (primarily Spur, occasionally WHOIS) with the admin version. Making the non-admin version more useful would be a very welcome improvement, and integrating Spur data would obviate most need for external tools. —‍Mdaniels5757 (talk • contribs) 01:40, 1 August 2023 (UTC)
I heard last week that there had been progress around improving the details provided in IP Info, but that it was not finished. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 23:30, 22 August 2023 (UTC)

Should temporary accounts get notified of reverts?

I'm curious if any community members have thoughts on this. This topic relates to this Phab task: T333531.

Currently new accounts do not receive revert notices.

However, as of now, temporary accounts will receive revert notices since that is the system default.

I think there are pros and cons associated with either approach, and I'm curious if anyone has insight into which approach makes the most sense for temporary accounts. Thanks! - KStoller-WMF (talk) 22:58, 31 July 2023 (UTC)

How technically difficult would it be to add a temporal aspect to this - say, a week? If easy, then that seems best (I realise it might not be - I've no idea). Nosebagbear (talk) 17:22, 10 August 2023 (UTC)
Thanks for the feedback, @Nosebagbear! Hmmmm, that would definitely add some technical complexity. It seems like we should just have a binary "yes" or "no" as to whether temp accounts are going to receive revert notices to reduce community confusion about this. Personally I'm leaning towards keeping this simple and moving forward with the system default (which would mean temp accounts receive revert notices). Keeping system defaults is also more ideal from the user_properties table bloat perspective (T333531#9046743). KStoller-WMF (talk) 19:02, 11 August 2023 (UTC)
Fair enough - definitely greater priorities to spend the time on. Nosebagbear (talk) 19:55, 11 August 2023 (UTC)
I didn't know (or forgot?) that new accounts do not receive revert notices. I think both – IPs/temporary accounts and new accounts – should receive those.
It happens quite frequently at dewiki that IPs/new users don't notice that they have been reverted and continue editing other articles with the same mistakes while established editors wonder why they don't react to advise given in the revert's edit summary. Johannnes89 (talk) 20:39, 11 August 2023 (UTC)
This is the first I have heard of this. When I edit on EN:WP the first I know of an edit being reverted is when I check the page history, or my contribution record, or refresh the page and notice it isn't there, or someone posts a message to my talk page. I imagined that everyone would check to see how things develop. For a registered editor, does a revert trigger something on the message notification system, and if it does, how long has it done so? Is it open-ended? Would (s)he be notified of a revert made ten years later (assuming no intervening edits)? What about partial reverts? Occasionally the orange "you have new message" bar flashes up and I am directed to a message that may be ten years old, no one using that IP having accessed the site in the interim. 10:42, 12 August 2023 (UTC)
This notification is delivered using the Notifications extension, see mw:Help:Notifications/Types#Edit reverts. As far as I know, the Notifications system as a whole is unavailable to IP users. Revert notifications have been available for logged-in users for over a decade. —Tacsipacsi (talk) 11:07, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
I also didn't know that new users don't receive revert notifications, but I think it's a good thing that they don't. Sometimes a patroller might revert an edit when a more gentle approach like making adjustments to the edit would've been possible, for example. I've even seen patrollers revert test edits that were made on a test page. If a new user keeps making problematic edits, the experienced users should leave a message on the user's talk page instead of just reverting and writing their explanation in the edit summary. kyykaarme (talk) 08:49, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
Hi. I have mixed feelings, as @Johannnes89 and @Kyykaarme both have good arguments. But I think I would prefer that new users and temp accounts receive reverts notifications, even if patrollers should add an explanation on newcommers talkpages, in order to maximize the probability that newcommers see why their edits have been reverted. — Jules* talk 17:47, 31 August 2023 (UTC)
I think that the concern, in the past, has been that if new editors see they've been reverted, they will edit war, rather than trying to understand why their edits have been reverted. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 19:50, 4 September 2023 (UTC)
It's quite difficult to have an opinion on different functions of the temp accounts when there is little information on what the users themselves will see in various stages of their experience (most importantly before they make their first edit). But I think it's a bad idea to show them revert notifications. Many temp account users will probably be people who are mostly readers of Wikipedia and they only make one or a few edits. I don't think we should show them a notification when someone has reverted an edit they made maybe months ago. I don't know if the list of notifications in the phab post 9079067 is accurate, but I don't think it should be possible to "thank" edits made by temp accounts, and the users should not be notified when they've been mentioned, nor should they be notified when they reach an edit milestone. kyykaarme (talk) 08:29, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
why shouldn't they get notified when they get mentioned somewhere? Johannnes89 (talk) 09:10, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
I see temp accounts as more like "IP editor plus" than "registered account light". They are people who have not chosen to register a user account just like current IP users haven't, and we should keep treating them in similar ways. If I think of current situations where an IP user might get pinged (if they could be pinged), it'd probably be when someone reports a vandal and in very rare occasions in some discussions. There's no need to notify a vandal and in the latter situation another user can leave a message on the user's talk page. Just like with revert notifications, pinging risks unnecessarily bothering people who are not actually editors and instead they're mostly just readers of Wikipedia. kyykaarme (talk) 13:25, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
IPs not having access to Echo has probably more to do with the fact that multiple people can share an IP and thus notifications can reach the wrong people. Temporary users, on the other hand, are likely to correspond to specific people (except for temporary users created on public computers, like in libraries) – while the likelihood of people changing temporary accounts, and thus missing notifications, is still high, the likelihood of people sharing temporary accounts and thus receiving notifications not aimed at them is significantly lower. So even though temporary users are more like “IP editors plus”, the technical differences can allow to include (at least some) notifications in the “plus” part instead of excluding them as part of the “IP editors” part.
There's no need to notify a vandal – why? If a vandal is not notified, chances are much lower that they will ever change their behavior. If they’re notified, maybe they realize that what they do is wrong, and start doing constructive edits (or at least stop doing destructive edits without the need for a longer block). Also, when one is pinged, then someone else wants something from them; it’s a necessary bothering of someone who’s not just a reader, but also an editor to some extent (if one is not an editor at all, i.e. never edits, the temporary account doesn’t get created and there’s nothing to ping). Other editors can always decide not to ping someone. —Tacsipacsi (talk) 18:48, 13 August 2023 (UTC)
I meant that when a user reports a vandal to the admins, at that point it's not necessary to notify the vandal that they're being reported. kyykaarme (talk) 08:50, 16 August 2023 (UTC)
And I meant that exactly at that point, it’s at least useful to notify the vandal, to give them a chance to realize that what they’re doing is wrong and could have serious consequences, and to stop vandalizing before they get blocked. —Tacsipacsi (talk) 23:37, 16 August 2023 (UTC)
And I meant that at that point it's too late. When a patroller reports a vandal to the admins, it's usually the case that the vandal has already been warned at least once or twice, or they have rapidly done so many edits that they need to be blocked ASAP. kyykaarme (talk) 07:55, 19 August 2023 (UTC)
It’s never too late. Especially in the second case, if the vandal has never been warned before, they may stop vandalizing if they are warned by the block request ping. But even in the first case, they may have missed/ignored/not taken seriously the previous warnings: it’s not likely that this time they will, but not impossible either. —Tacsipacsi (talk) 22:27, 20 August 2023 (UTC)
phab:T333531 indicates that Echo will infact be active for temp users with the notifications listed in the ticket. This is another thing that would be useful in the next MassMessage, along with all instances where temp users are not treated the same as IP editors. Snævar (talk) 12:02, 9 October 2023 (UTC)
Even if it's not "necessary" to notify the vandal that they're being reported, is it harmful?
Some wikis have better success in turning vandals into productive editors than others. Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 23:34, 22 August 2023 (UTC)