[WikiEN-l] Anonymous proxies (was Re: Desysop Morwen)

zero 0000 nought_0000 at yahoo.com
Sun Feb 15 02:14:10 UTC 2004

--- Tim Starling <ts4294967296 at hotmail.com> wrote:
> Anonymous proxies are
> regularly used for vandalism, and once we block one, the vandal just
> moves to another one. On meta recently we've had a bot operating to
> vandalise tens of articles, via an anonymous proxy.
> Would there be any objections to systematically blocking all
> anonymous proxies on a site-wide basis?

I would object to it being done without a study to determine how many
genuine editors use anonymizers.  There are quite legitimate possible
reasons.  One is an editor who writes in Wikipedia from work but 
doesn't want his/her employer's IP to be associated with it.  Another
is someone who wants to be anonymous on Wikipedia but has a fixed IP
address that uniquely identifies him/her.  We should not ban this
practice unless we have a global policy that anonymity is forbidden.

That's not to say that I don't sympathize with the problem you
describe.  On the other hand, how much of this problem would
exist if it wasn't for the practice of allowing people to edit
articles without logging in?  Every time this matter is raised there
are screams about the sky falling in, but I have yet to see a single
convincing reason why we can't restrict editing to logged-in users.


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