Am Mittwoch, 21. Juni 2006 16:07 schrieb Robert Scott Horning:
I've heard a lot of fear mongering and what I
percieve to be unwarrented
fears about abuses to checkuser actions. Can you give some clear
examples of what have been percieved as abuses of those with checkuser
privileges, at least types of problems that have happened as a matter or
I did never take the time investigating the background of any checkuser of
others. I just noticed some statistics:
en.wikipedia (and some other smaller projects as well) have overproportional
heavy use of CheckUser. de.wikipedia (the second largest one, which has like
en.wikipedia many trolls but probably has different approaches keeping them
down, which naturally also have their specific positive and negative side
effects) has no checkuser trace in the logfiles (a developer can make a
Checkuser directly at the servers without Checkuser logfile traces but
nonetheless it were only a few in case of de.wikipedia).
I know I am speaking from an apparent minority opinion
on this mailing
list, but I fail to see what real damage is happening from simply
looking up the IP address of a user.
My concerns are as follows: A Checkuser of an IP from let us say China or
Saudi Arabia can have *serious* impact if these informations come into the
wrong hands although the probability of a worst case scenario is quite low.
So if en.wp makes heavy regular use of checkuser why shouldn't zh.wp and ar.wp
do the same as well (and logfile data of a palestinian on he.wp is also a
potentially serious matter for example)? It is a question of caution and role
model function of en.wp.
So I don't suggest to en.wp stop checkuser but use it more seriously. Just
block an IP or recently created vandal account unilaterally if you think it's
a sock puppet without investigating deeper (hey you're admin you have to *be
bold* sometimes) and only perform a checkuser afterwards in case there was a
real demand from several third persons.
That way you also avoid creating a large bueraucracy on blocking of small
fishes like IPs and short lived accounts and have more time for far more
Checkuser should mainly be a weapon against sock puppets of people that are
involved deeper in the project (let's say several accounts of a single person
that abuses them for quite some time in a sophisticated way with a mixture
out of valid and POV edits).
Just my 2 cents...