[Foundation-l] Fwd: Have you dealt with this yet? If so,how?

Alex mrzmanwiki at gmail.com
Sun Nov 23 18:38:25 UTC 2008

Foundation-l list admin wrote:
> (2nd try, hope it isn't a duplicate)
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: dee dee <strategicdesign2001 at yahoo.com>
> Date: Sat, Nov 22, 2008 at 5:06 PM
> Subject: Have you dealt with this yet? If so,how?
> To: foundation-l-owner at lists.wikimedia.org
> 2: In addition, this section of
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WP:CHECKUSER
> "Privacy violation?
>    * If you feel that a checkuser has led to a violation of the
> Wikimedia Foundation privacy policy regarding yourself, please refer
> the case to the Ombudsman commission."
> is something I find to be quite Orwellian. How can someone report a
> privacy violation if they do not know that checkuser has been used on
> them?

Based on my reading of the privacy policy[1], specifically:
"When using a pseudonym, your IP address will not be available to the
public except in cases of abuse, including vandalism of a wiki page by
you or by another user with the same IP address. In all cases, your IP
address will be stored on the wiki servers and can be seen by
Wikimedia's server administrators and by users who have been granted
"CheckUser" access. Your IP address, and its connection to any usernames
that share it may be released under certain circumstances (see below)."

a checkuser using the checkuser tool, on its own, cannot be a privacy
policy violation, it cannot become one until they release some or all of
the data to people who would not normally have access to it.

It may be a violation of the Checkuser policy[2], as it says "There must
be a valid reason to check a user." but the checkuser policy seems to
agree with my interpretation of the privacy policy:
"On Wikimedia projects, privacy policy considerations are of tremendous
importance. Unless someone is violating policy with their actions (e.g.
massive bot vandalism or spam) and revealing information about them is
necessary to stop the disruption, it is a violation of the privacy
policy to reveal their IP, whereabouts, or other information sufficient
to identify them, unless they have already revealed this information
themselves on the project."

Nowhere does it says its a violation of the privacy policy simply to do
the check.

[1] <http://wikimediafoundation.org/wiki/Privacy_policy>
[2] <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/CheckUser>

Alex (wikipedia:en:User:Mr.Z-man)

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