MediaWiki talk:Anoneditwarning

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Added links[edit]

This message appears at the top of every page of users not logged in when editing. I've added links to IP address, the history, and to the log-in screen. Thanks! Flcelloguy (A note?) 23:01, 13 February 2006 (UTC)


Omegatron 00:01, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

I disagree with that. The simpler we keep the message, the better. If necessary, a new page could be created explaining all this, but I don't think it's necessary. Keep in mind that this message appears at the top of every edit screen. Also, some people might not agree with the last statement. While it is true in terms of technical IP addresses, other people think that an account feels like a name, making it less anonymous. Thanks! Flcelloguy (A note?) 00:22, 26 May 2006 (UTC)
The typical anonymous editor doesn't understand what that means. I don't think another sentence is too long.
True, we should keep the message simpler. --Siva1979Talk to me 03:23, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

"You are not logged in. You are free to edit pages; be aware that your IP address will be recorded in this page's edit history, which is accessible by anyone and can be used to reveal your true identity. Registering an account allows you to post under a pseudonym instead." — Omegatron 01:15, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

This sentence structure looks sound and to the point. --Siva1979Talk to me 03:35, 13 July 2006 (UTC)

Warn anons creating articles in talk namespace?[edit]

In the past week I've had to move no less than 7 articles created by anon users to the article namespace. Should we include a namespace check that points them to articles for creation? 10:37, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

Anons can no longer create articles if I remember correctly. ~ Flameviper 13:35, 9 January 2007 (UTC)

Place IP address at top of page?[edit]

I was thinking that it chould display the anon IP address along with a link to the anon's talk page. Something like "Your IP address, which can be found [[Special:Mytalk|here]], which will be recorded in this page's edit history". As it currently stands, it is exceedingly hard to find your own IP address and as thus, many anons (especially shared IPs) are unaware of their vandalism notices (usually thinking that their vandalism is acceptable). ~ Flameviper 13:35, 9 January 2007 (UTC)

It's already at the top of the page by default... next to login/logout... right? ---J.S (T/C/WRE) 18:30, 10 January 2007 (UTC)

Actually, it isn't. On Uncyclopedia it is, likely because they use an older version of MediaWiki. ~ Flameviper Who's a Peach? 17:37, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Don't see any harm in changing text from "your own IP address" to eg "your own IP Address ([[Special:Mytalk|]])" - PocklingtonDan 19:26, 10 January 2007 (UTC)
Impossible, I think, because the IP address isn't passed in to the message. --ais523 09:10, 11 January 2007 (UTC)
No it's not. 13:09, 11 January 2007 (UTC) is right; although it appeared in previous MediaWiki versions, it doesn't seem to do so at the moment. --ais523 13:32, 11 January 2007 (UTC)
I'd be happy to do it for yall, but I can't seem the magic word for it. ---J.S (T/C/WRE) 18:15, 11 January 2007 (UTC)
Once the exact text of the addition has been decided, consensus has been reached, and it is technically possible, re-add {{editprotected}}. If you have any questions, please contact me at my talk page. Ian Manka 04:33, 12 January 2007 (UTC)
I don't think this can be done without a change to the software. --ais523 12:25, 16 January 2007 (UTC)

The link to your talk page is already functional. ~ Flameviper Who's a Peach? 17:36, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

= New text =[edit]

Per above discussion, I have taken the liberty of writing a new text for the contents of this page.

You are not currently logged in. While you are free to edit without logging in, your IP address (viewable here) will be recorded in this page's edit history. Creating an account will conceal your IP address and provide you with many other benefits.

The raw code:

You are not currently [[Special:Userlogin|logged in]]. While you are free to edit without logging in, your [[IP address]] (viewable [[Special:Mytalk|here]]) will be recorded in this page's <span class="plainlinks"> [{{fullurl:{{FULLPAGENAME}}|action=history}} edit history]</span>.  Creating an account will conceal your IP address and provide you with many other [[Wikipedia:Why create an account?|benefits]].


~ Flameviper Who's a Peach? 17:40, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

What about ...'your IP address (view your IP address and messages sent to people with that IP address) will be recorded'..., to make it clearer to people who don't understand IPs what's going on? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Ais523 (talkcontribs) 17:52, 31 January 2007 (UTC).
That seems too long. And it's cumbersome... KISS. ~ Flameviper Who's a Peach? 20:14, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Done. Agree that the second proposal is too wordy, although the first one might do with a little more elaboration. Perhaps add the IP address note on the seperate line? But anyway, the proposed wording seems to be a step up from what we have, now, so I've put it in. Luna Santin 23:32, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Thank you, Luna. I believe that link may stop a considerable amount of vandalism from anonymous editors (particularly shared IPs, who tend to not receive vandalism warnings). I believe it may be possible to further distill the fact that vandalism is bad into these IPs, but until that can be done, this will work superbly. ~ Flameviper Who's a Peach? 01:34, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Reducing "uninentional vandalism"[edit]


(Topic moved from Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)#Reducing "unintentional vandalism" on advice.)

I would like to suggest that an augmented version of the text "For testing, please use the sandbox instead.", which currently appears in the edit window in a place where no-one would ever see it (least of all casual experimenters), is promoted up the page to go immediately beneath the edit buttons, so that this section reads:

Do not copy text from other websites without permission. It will be deleted.
Do not save editing experiments. For testing, please use the sandbox instead.

The aim is to discourage non-malicious users from unintentionally corrupting pages by entering random characters etc. and then saving the page to "see what happens". I'm hoping that this area of the screen will -- just about -- bear one more line of text. Any thoughts?

Matt 22:20, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

I think this is a good idea, but suggest slightly different wording:
To test how Wikipedia works, edit the sandbox, not other pages.
-- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:03, 24 April 2007 (UTC)
I've added {{editprotected}}. The suggested edit seems good to me, I'll just wait to see if any objections come up. --ais523 08:34, 26 April 2007 (UTC)
As for the wording... what about If you want to make test edits, you can do so safely in the Sandbox.? --ais523 14:04, 26 April 2007 (UTC)
Hmm.. I kind of prefer a definite statement to the effect that you shouldn't save test edits, which is then followed by a clause mentioning the sandbox. Just having an "if you want to experiment then..."-type wording seems a little weaker to me. Also, I think the inclusion of the word "save" is important. You can do editing experiments to your heart's content on "live" articles provided that you only preview, and indeed this is a very useful facility. Matt 01:59, 27 April 2007 (UTC).
Do not save test edits. If you want to experiment, please use the Sandbox. I wonder if this could be turned off in the Sandbox itself using ParserFunctions? (It would depend on how this particular message is cached; it appears to accept wikimarkup, but I'm wondering how often it's parsed.) --ais523 12:52, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
Yep, that wording seems fine to me. I think it would have to be turned off (or reworded) in the sandbox itself, otherwise it would be extremely confusing. Actually, on a slightly different note, I find the sandbox itself confusing. Is there only one sandbox article for everyone? How does that work if there are twenty people all trying to edit it at the same time? Matt 17:00, 27 April 2007 (UTC).
There's one main sandbox, and test edits overwrite or follow each other, generally speaking. User:Sandbot does its best to try to maintain some sort of order there, and on occasion I reset it manually myself. Registered users can also create their own sandboxes, typically which only they edit, for longer-lasting tests (e.g. when you want to show something to someone or don't want your test to be overwritten immediately). --ais523 17:18, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
I've checked; it is possible to turn this off in the sandbox. If there are no objections soon, I'll make the change. --ais523 17:19, 27 April 2007 (UTC)

(Undo indent) Excellent. I just had another thought actually. If you want to test out how something will appear in an article, then in practice it is so much easier to use the Preview button than mess around with the sandbox. If you can't get it to work, or you don't like the results, then you just navigate away without saving. I wonder if it might be worth trying to explicitly mention this in the message? Otherwise people might get into the habit of thinking they have to use the sandbox, when really they don't. Downside is that the message will get longer and more complicated, and I can't think of a really neat and concise way of expressing it right now. Matt 17:36, 27 April 2007 (UTC).

There are occasions on which previewing is insufficient for saving for technical reasons; additionaly, one of the main reasons for test edits is that people want to edit Wikipedia just to see if they can, and previewing isn't very useful for that. I'd suggest using the shorter message that doesn't mention 'Preview' (which is quite obvious anyway, as it's right next to 'Save'). --ais523 17:55, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, I think you are probably right. It's probably over-complicating matters. Unless anyone objects, let's go with the wording you proposed. Matt 18:42, 27 April 2007 (UTC).
"Do not save test edits." seems a bit rude to be displaying to every single anon. To borrow a line from WP:WARN, how about just "If you would like to experiment, please use the sandbox."? —dgiestc 23:54, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
As per my earlier comment, I think it's better to include a direct statement telling people not to save tests. Just saying "If you want to experiment, then..." seems rather weak to me. However, if you feel the proposed wording is too abrupt then it could be easily softened as Please do not save test edits. If you want to experiment then please use the Sandbox. Matt 00:34, 29 April 2007 (UTC).
YesY Done. I've made the change; the final wording adopted was "Please do not save test edits. If you want to experiment, please use the Sandbox." (which differs from "Matt"'s version only in that I used a comma rather than 'then'). The notice will be disabled in the Sandbox itself. --ais523 08:11, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
Good stuff... thanks for doing that! Matt 00:47, 2 May 2007 (UTC).

Compensating for Bug ID 9213[edit]

{{editprotected}} Would it be possible to make the link to Special:Mytalk more noticeable, to help make up for the failure of the new messages bar to work consistently or reliably for anons? That way they see an obvious link to their talk page whenever they hit edit?--VectorPotentialTalk 23:57, 28 April 2007 (UTC)

Would bolding it be ok? ^demon[omg plz] 00:27, 30 April 2007 (UTC)
Something like that, maybe with a reference to it being a talk page, something like Check your talk page for new messages, if that's not too horrible looking--VectorPotentialTalk 16:57, 2 May 2007 (UTC)
How's that? ^demon[omg plz] 21:12, 2 May 2007 (UTC)
That works--VectorPotentialTalk 21:17, 2 May 2007 (UTC)
Would adding something like {{User:Vector Potential/anon workaround}} be overkill?--VectorPotentialTalk 16:28, 26 June 2007 (UTC)
This is actually a serious suggestion--VectorPotentialTalk 17:19, 17 July 2007 (UTC)
I think its a good idea. Most editors are not going to read through the entire text at the top so a orange bar will catch their attention. What do others think? --Hdt83 Chat 19:34, 18 July 2007 (UTC)
Having the bar there all the time will lead to it being ignored just as if it was never there. — Carl (CBM · talk) 01:50, 19 July 2007 (UTC)

Emphasize logging[edit]

I think we should emphasize that your IP address and the time and date of your edits will be freely visible to anyone, and recorded forever and ever. I think this would discourage at least a small portion of the vandalism (from high school libraries and the like; yes, you can be tracked down from this information, kids). Currently it says:

You are not currently logged in. While you are free to edit without logging in, your IP address (viewable on your talkpage, where you can check messages sent to your IP) will be recorded in this page's edit history. Creating an account will conceal your IP address and provide you with many other benefits.

How about this?

You are not currently logged in. While you are free to edit without logging in, your IP address will be recorded publicly, along with the time and date, in this page's edit history. It is sometimes possible for others to identify you with this information. Creating an account will conceal your IP address and provide you with many other benefits. Messages sent to your IP can be viewed on your talkpage.

Whether it helps chill some vandalism or not, it's still good to spell this out for newcomers. Most people aren't too technically-savvy. — Omegatron 05:01, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

"can be used by others to identify you"? — Omegatron 18:46, 7 July 2007 (UTC)

A very sensible addition, I think, but for one thing. We should somehow avoid giving an innacurate impression of the likelihood of such a search being carried out. Adrian M. H. 18:54, 7 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes. We need to stress that it's possible and completely out of our control, but without giving the indication that it happens regularly. — Omegatron 20:59, 7 July 2007 (UTC)
I changed it a little bit again. — Omegatron 12:31, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
Yes, that sounds pretty good. I think that the use of "possible" is sufficient to indicate that it is unlikely to happen in practice. Adrian M. H. 15:03, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
I switched "often" for "sometimes", which is technically slightly less accurate but reads better and avoids any hint that it happens a lot. What do you think? Adrian M. H. 15:05, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
Fine with me. I'll put it up. — Omegatron 15:26, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
Is there a page that lists instances of anon identification like this? Benoit, Seigenthaler, politicians editing their own articles, etc. We could create such a page and link to it from "sometimes possible". — Omegatron 15:44, 8 July 2007 (UTC)
Not sure, but I'll keep an eye open for it. Adrian M. H. 15:48, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

I'd suggest something like "...will conceal your IP address - within reason - and..."--Rambutan (talk) 18:03, 8 July 2007 (UTC)

It's an improvement. People have the right to know this. A.Z. 00:00, 9 July 2007 (UTC)

Though not to avoid being prosecuted for murder... A.Z. 00:03, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
We don't want to discourage anon editing though, and this may scare people into not contributing. This is also technically true for registered users as well, except the "publicly" part. I would remove the line "It is sometimes possible for others to identify you with this information" and leave the rest. Prodego talk 05:28, 9 July 2007 (UTC)

This really looks like something that will backfire. We probably want vandals to edit anonymously so that it's easier for us to track them down. I don't quite see the positive in a move that will encourage the creation of vandalism-only accounts. Once a clueless vandal realizes that it takes 10 seconds to register a new account the time we lose with that vandal increases dramatically. Plus the warning message has an odd Orwellian tone to it that is likely to discourage positive contributions. I say let the clueless remain clueless. Good editors will eventually register an account. Vandals, hopefully, will continue to edit anonymously, unknowingly allowing us to be much more efficient in blocking them. Pascal.Tesson 20:28, 9 July 2007 (UTC)

I do disagree that it will backfire. Before Wikipedia's creation, allowing everyone to edit would seem to a lot of people as something that would backfire, that would turn this website into chaos, that would never work. Now that Wikipedia has been created, allowing everyone to know everything, and allowing full transparency is something that looks like it will backfire. The fact is that this encyclopedia is supposed to bring information to the entire world. We should therefore not hide information about the project itself. For some reason, people participating believe that free information for all is good. If we believe that we should hide information from people because they will use information badly, we are denying the premise of this project. A.Z. 20:42, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
Well, ok we disagree. Nevertheless, the fact remains that the proposed message is both misleading and likely to scare away anonymous contributors. It's misleading because the IP can be checked even for registered users and most definitely would be in Seigenthaler-like affairs. It's also misleading because IPs don't help to identify an actual person unless you put quite a bit of effort into it. As for "ensuring transparency", well that's all fine and noble but what's the actual benefit besides our good conscience? If we lose a single editor because he misunderstands that warning then the net effect on the project is negative. Pascal.Tesson 13:00, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
The above editor may have a good point with regard to vandals creating accounts, although I am not sure how that would increase workload as I am not particularly familiar with the blocking process. Is it actually easier to prevent IPs from editing (even allowing for dynamic IP assignment)? I remain unconvinced by the suggestion that it may scare away editors, however. Adrian M. H. 16:29, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

CSS id attribute[edit]


Please reinstate the recent edit by Misza13 which was reverted. While anonymous users do not have a stylesheet page on Wikipedia, it is perfectly possible to create and use a stylesheet locally, for any website, Wikipedia included; without this attribute, there is no way to refer to this message using CSS -- 10:22, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Already done by MZMcBride. Nihiltres(t.l) 20:10, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

test edits[edit]

This didn’t show up when I wasn’t logged in: “Please do not save test edits. If you want to experiment, please use the sandbox.” The following edit should be done, since the main sandbox sometimes has lost it’s links to the other sandboxes:


To experiment, use a sandbox: Main Sandbox | Tutorial Sandbox 1 | Tutorial Sandbox 2 | Tutorial Sandbox 3 | Tutorial Sandbox 4 | Tutorial Sandbox 5
For a sandbox of your own, create a user subpage. Thank you.

You are not currently logged in. Editing this way will cause your IP address to be recorded publicly in this page's edit history. If you create an account, you can conceal your IP address and be provided with many other benefits. Messages sent to your IP can be viewed on your talk page. Please do not save test edits. If you want to experiment, please use the sandbox.

—Preceding unsigned comment added by Chuck Marean (talkcontribs)

X mark.svg Not done please establish consensus for this change. Happymelon 15:21, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Proposed addition to the warning[edit]

I've proposed a addition to the warning. Please see this discussion at WP:VPR for more information. D.M.N. (talk) 11:53, 30 August 2008 (UTC)

Yet another wording suggestion?[edit]

In an attempt to clarify the benefits, and hopefully deter unconstructive edits with the note about shared ip's I came up with the following wording ( before I'd found the talk page ), anyway here it is in full for your delictation and picking over...might have some juicy bits in it? 19:58, 4 March 2009 (UTC)

You are not currently logged in, so Wikipedia will use your IP address to record your edits in this page's history and to post messages on this IP's talk page (these may also be read by anyone using the same computer or shared network). Creating an account, amongst other benefits, conceals your IP address and allows messages to sent directly to you, independent of the computer you login from.

Do not save test edits to articles, please experiment by copy and pasting to a sandbox first.

L∴V 21:15, 17 April 2009 (UTC)



Please make this to an editnotice, change from {{ombox}} to {{editnotice}}. Xenus (talk) 17:57, 17 April 2009 (UTC)

Sorry, but why? - Rjd0060 (talk) 19:37, 17 April 2009 (UTC)
I second that. Why? X mark.svg Not done Icestorm815Talk 05:35, 18 April 2009 (UTC)
Shouldn't it be using {{fmbox}} ? -- WOSlinker (talk) 12:49, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
WOSlinker is right, this is a system message so should use {{fmbox}}, not {{ombox}} or {{editnotice}}. Although {{editnotice}} does have the same style, so Xenus was kind of right. And I see that Happy-Melon has updated this message to use {{fmbox}}, so now all is right.
--David Göthberg (talk) 14:21, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

Color it[edit]

Give the box a background color so that I do not miss it as easily (because I just did once again). de.wikipedia for example uses a light blue, but I think the strong orange as in Template:SharedIPEDU fits best. —j.engelh (talk) 11:35, 28 April 2009 (UTC)

I'm quite opposed to adding a background color anything like the strong orange of {{SharedIPEDU}}; it would simply end up scaring new anonymous users away ("I must be doing something wrong since I'm getting a warning") and annoying some long-time anonymous users who don't want to register an account, in exchange for a few long-time users more quickly noticing when they're logged out - a trade-off that is hardly worth it. I wouldn't mind a light blue color so much, though. ダイノガイ?!」(Dinoguy1000) 21:35, 28 April 2009 (UTC)
j.engelh: Most of us have no problem telling apart when we are logged in or not. But no worries, we have a standard solution for users like you: You can add something to your personal /monobook.css that makes the edit window look different when you are logged in. Thus when you are logged out you will notice that the edit window doesn't look like you have become used to. Here is my personal favourite:
/* Edit window background. */
textarea {
    background: #FFFBF0;   /* Light beige. */
After you have edited your /monobook.css wait one minute, then bypass your browser cache, then you will see the change next time you edit a page.
--David Göthberg (talk) 01:05, 29 April 2009 (UTC)

Return login link[edit]


See also bug:27264 and bug:25973.

Please replace:

You are not currently [[Special:UserLogin|logged in]].


You are not currently [{{fullurl:Special:UserLogin|returnto={{FULLPAGENAMEE}}&returntoquery=action%3Dedit}} logged in].

This will give a login link that returns to the edit page. Since this interface message is shown as an edit notice during editing we can assume the action=edit. Krinkle (talk) 22:29, 8 February 2011 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done. Can you check it is working as intended and let me know if anything needs tweaking? — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 15:32, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

Redesigning the edit warning[edit]

Hey all! So, as you may be aware if you use the Vector skin, Vibha Bamba, myself and a couple of devs have been poking and prodding at the edit interface recently to try and simplify it. We've made a lot of changes to the actual software, but haven't touched things like this template - we wanted to give it a more considered look, and we certainly didn't want to change anything without getting feedback from the community :).

One of the things we've discovered through things like altering the edit interface is that a lot of people actually gloss over the anonymous editing warning (as evidenced by the need to regularly have oversighters remove contributions made by users who accidentally logged-out). It's something that people tend to dismiss, because it's ever-present and surrounded by a pile of other notices and UI elements. At the same time, the sheer size of the notice means that it can push "critical actions" (save, preview and cancel, for example) below the fold of the page - particularly since it's worth remembering that the warning can stack with others, such as the BLP warning or the protection notice, and fill up the entire screen.

With these things in mind we've made a redesign of the template, as transcluded here.

The priorities/thinking behind it:

  1. Reduce size. We know that a lot of people subconsciously ignore the template, which means it's not doing much at its current size except stacking with other templates and creating a potentially awkward interface.
  2. Reduce text. To be frank, the shorter something is the higher the chances people will read it rather than ignore it :).
  3. Reduce linking. The current template has a pile of links, which is great for keeping people informed but increases the chances they'll end up wandering down a "6 degrees of Wikipedia" rabbit hole. The new template provides 3 links: 2 to show a logged-out user what they can do, and 1 to show them why they'd want to.

As always, we're grateful for any and all feedback - this doc provides quick guidelines on the type of feedback that we can constructively use. Thanks! Okeyes (WMF) (talk) 20:02, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Reaper Eternal (talk) 14:37, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
Awesome start to much-needed changes. We need to fix the links however (they appear broken to me, and there's a note on VPT). Also, I think maybe the wording "hidden behind a username" is somewhat negative or nefarious sounding, rather than positive. I would suggest instead, "to have a username associated with your edits". This is also more accurate, since within the rules of CheckUser and in the database, your IP is not 100% hidden. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 18:15, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
I did the copy change just now, since no one objected. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 22:11, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
Oh, and one more thing: could you edit MediaWiki:Anonpreviewwarning to have the same look (icon, background color, etc.) as this one? David1217 What I've done 18:31, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done Reaper Eternal (talk) 19:11, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Okeyes (WMF), can you or an admin update the anon edit warning icon with this new one if it's ok with you? I cropped out the sides and compressed it so it's smaller/optimized. Thanks - M0rphzone (talk) 22:53, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

Uploading the new version to Commons would facilitate a change faster. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 23:12, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
There's no point in uploading a new one when it's a minor change. - M0rphzone (talk) 05:45, 11 November 2012 (UTC)
I think he means that you can replace the existing file with a new version, as I have now done :). Okeyes (WMF) (talk) 14:37, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. For some reason the file was protected and I couldn't upload a new version, so I thought you should upload it. Plus, you're the original uploader anyways. - M0rphzone (talk) 06:13, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 05:58, 12 November 2012 (UTC)[edit]

Please make a wiki link to IP address, or otherwise state in the notice that an IP address can be used to determine a person's physical location. Not all anonymous editors know what an IP address is and what can be done with it. jfd34 (talk) 05:58, 12 November 2012 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done — Martin (MSGJ · talk) 17:08, 12 November 2012 (UTC)

New editor engagement?[edit]

This is not an edit request, but this question is related to this page. πr2 (tc) 01:08, 16 May 2013 (UTC)

Figuring out how many people actually sign up via this message[edit]

Hey all,

Recently my team enabled Extension:Campaigns, which makes it easy to figure out how many people sign up via a link, by adding a bit to URLs like "?campaign=test". This functionality has been around in previous forms for several years, under names like CustomUserSignup.

Anyway, the new campaigns extension is here to stay, and I'd like to propose adding a campaign identifier ("campaign=anoneditwarning") to the sign up link in this MediaWiki message. This message is presented to thousands of people who might be interested in editing semi-protected pages, but we have no idea how many end up creating accounts, or if they end up actually editing anything afterwards.

Aggregate stats on how many people sign up via the link in this message will help my team figure out how many new accounts are coming in via semi-protected pages. We're constantly trying to get data that helps us prioritize our experimentation, so knowing this will help us plan what kind of features to test next. For the community, knowing this will hopefully help inform decision-making as well, such as what should go in this message. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 01:03, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

Done —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 13:07, 19 June 2013 (UTC)
And working! 176 people have successfully created accounts after clicking the "create an account" link in this message, and (because you fixed the returnto link) they're coming from a wide variety of pages. \o/ thanks! -- SpageTest anoneditwarning 0619-1 (talk) 19:30, 19 June 2013 (UTC)
Uhhh, 175 new accounts ignoring the test dummy ^above :) -- S Page (WMF) (talk) 19:35, 19 June 2013 (UTC)
A week's worth of data will seal the deal, so to speak, but I've posted preliminary results from the last two days or so. It's risen up to 992 total during the period, or about 10% of all registrations. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 20:58, 21 June 2013 (UTC)

Bug in sign up link, it loses returnto[edit]

The template provides a ?returnto in the query string so that after creating an account the user will get a link to return to the page he or she was attempting to edit. But it links to Special:CreateAccount, which redirects and loses the query string. The fix is to link to Special:UserLogin/signup, which isn't a redirect and will preserve the returnto URL. You could instead use Special:Userlogin?type=signup, but I think the former is better.

While I'm here, let's be consistent and say "Create an account" which is the link on every page and the most popular phrasing, instead of "sign up/register/enroll/etc".

We should create a {{Createacct-link}} template that fabricates links to _Create an account_ and makes it easier to track them all.-- S Page (WMF) (talk) 07:01, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

done. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 13:08, 19 June 2013 (UTC)


The background color, which helps this stand out in the source editor, isn't really necessary in VisualEditor as it has its own notification system - and it looks odd. We should move the inline styles to the stylesheet (good practice anyway), and disable the background color for VE. ESanders (WMF) (talk) 10:11, 16 July 2013 (UTC)

Removing the styles here would de-emphasize the message in the wikitext editor as well, and a significant proportion of enwiki signups come from the current message style (~20%). I think if VE wants a different style it should fork the message (probably wise, since this was styled and written assuming full page width, not a small notification popup). Let's wait to restyle this until we get a handle on how VE affects signups via this message (data: 1, 2) Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 17:24, 16 July 2013 (UTC)
@Steven (WMF): No, @ESanders (WMF): explicitly said moving the style to common.css, not removing it; this would allow the styling to be the same in the wikitext editor but skipped for VisualEditor. Jdforrester (WMF) (talk) 00:25, 17 July 2013 (UTC)
There's nothing really wrong with inline styles and the message already uses an HTML id, which could easily be used for re-styling the notice. That said, I have no issue if the styling is moved to MediaWiki:Common.css.

I'm curious how you intend to style VisualEditor on a per-wiki basis. Will you be adding additional directives to MediaWiki:Common.css that apply only during veaction=edit? Is there a VisualEditor-specific stylesheet (e.g., MediaWiki:VisualEditor.css)? Or something else entirely? --MZMcBride (talk) 06:25, 19 July 2013 (UTC)

Minor copyedit[edit]

Resolved: 18:33, 10 September 2013 (UTC)

A suggestion for a minor copy update, originally proposed as part of the Privacy Policy discussion by @Risker:


You are not logged in. Your IP address will be publicly visible if you make any edits. Please log in or create an account to have your edits associated with a user name, among other benefits


You are not logged in. Your IP address will be publicly visible if you make any edits. If you log in or create an account, your edits will be associated with a user name, among other benefits.

Seems okay to me, though I prefer the slightly more positive "attributed to a user name" instead. Anyone object? Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 21:53, 9 September 2013 (UTC)

@Steven (WMF): Would we want to change this in core rather than only for enwiki? Jdforrester (WMF) (talk) 22:26, 9 September 2013 (UTC)
@Steven (WMF):, either "associated with" or "attributed to" are fine by me; my concern was more the beginning of the sentence. Thank you for picking this up and moving it forward. I shall leave it to others to figure out whether or not this needs to be in core. Risker (talk) 23:24, 9 September 2013 (UTC)
James: Yes, let's do it in core too. The only hurdle may be that Wikipedia:Why create an account? doesn't seem to exist everywhere, so that link should either be made optional or stripped. Otherwise I see no reason not to propose a simple reword everywhere. If you make a patch I'll review it. :) Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 23:50, 9 September 2013 (UTC)
@Steven (WMF): Yes check.svg Done - see gerrit. Jdforrester (WMF) (talk) 17:18, 10 September 2013 (UTC)

Link fix[edit]

@Wikipedia: The "other benefits" link should link to the "Benefits explained" section rather than the "Summary of benefits" section.

Never mind, @Wikipedia. I just wanted to use the template. --Alien Putsch resistant (talk) 20:20, 25 April 2014 (UTC)

Just like the "other benefits" link on this page. --Alien Putsch resistant (talk) 21:42, 25 April 2014 (UTC)

Addition of stop hand[edit]

The recent enlargement of the warning banner, combined with the addition of a large stop hand, has changed this from being merely informative to communicating a message that anonymous editing is strongly discouraged. I have made a post about this at WP:TECHPUMP to draw more attention to the issue, but I would like to ask that these changes be reverted until some form of consensus can be reached. (talk) 04:29, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

Shouldn't this use File:Ambox warning yellow.svg instead?

-- (talk) 05:08, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

Just a note that Risker has replied, with some pretty good reasoning. ~SuperHamster Talk Contribs 05:19, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
I'm okay with the Ambox warning suggestion, provided (a) it's big and (b) we change the background colour then so that it stands out - yellow-orange on orange-yellow isn't nearly as obvious as the current colour contrast. Warnings are intended to be really obvious. Risker (talk) 05:26, 23 May 2014 (UTC) (modified Risker (talk) 05:52, 23 May 2014 (UTC))
The stop hand is often associated with Template:Uw-vandalism4im and may be seen as impolite or threatening by some editors. At least one IP editor has already made this assumption. Emblem-important.svg is another possible candidate for use.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 06:06, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
I'm good with either of those, provided that the background is in a contrasting colour. I agree that the stop sign isn't ideal; what's key here is the visual impact of having the warning symbol in an eye-catchingly different colour so that it will be obvious. Risker (talk) 06:09, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
How about this:

Same but with red triangle. This is how British road signs look.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 06:20, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

Excellent, ianmacm! I shall switch it out immediately, that is just the ticket. Thanks for finding that. Risker (talk) 06:43, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
Thanks, everyone! That gets the point across without carrying the same "stop" connotations. (talk) 07:00, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

I removed the large image for now. We're in the middle of controlled testing for alternative ways to invite anonymous editors to register (see the blog post with links to additional documentation). If we're going to implement any radical change, we should wait until at least next week, until the test is done. Otherwise we potentially invalidate the results. Plus, as anons have noted here, a huge image like this is not encouraging and helpful. Just increasing the loudness of a message does not improve its effectiveness. It just makes it more annoying. This image makes the warning pretty much the same size as the entire edit summary and save form, by comparison. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 15:54, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

I'm the Research Scientist at the WMF tasked with designing and evaluating the Anon Signup Experiment that we're running right now. I just wanted to chime in and confirm what Steven (WMF) is saying. It would be great if we could delay this change to the anon edit warning until the end of the experiment so as to not invalidate our results. We should be done running the test by midnight, May 28th (UTC) if would like to make the change again then. Sorry for the confusion and thanks for your understanding. --Halfak (WMF) (talk) 16:19, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
  • Actually, as someone who regularly works with testing and experiments, I can easily say that what you are doing is wrong; when there is known harm (as we already know is happening, driving potential editors away because they don't see the warning), you stop your experiment early and mitigate the harm. The "current" warning is almost invisible, and is useless as a warning. It's called a warning for a reason - because it's supposed to WARN people. Warnings need to be visible, to have sufficient contrast so that they are immediately seen by the eye, and to be clear on their intent. The warning that currently exists does not do its job sufficiently. You should have ample data after 90% of the test period to determine whether or not the tested features are making a difference. In fact, you'd be better off to see if THIS change makes a difference. This really seems like one more example of a couple of WMF staffers putting their own needs ahead of the project. Steven, when I tried to talk to you about this last night, you went on about things that were completely irrelevant to this warning (like having non-logged-in editors see "guest editor" in place of IPs, although the IP would still be visible to registered editors) and failed to address my concerns that the warning was not achieving its desired effectiveness. In fact, you didn't even mention this ongoing A/B testing that is supposedly dependent on maintaining the clearly deficient warning. The concern expressed by the various IPs posting here was about the use of the "stop-hand" image, which was mitigated by changing it to the red ambox graphic.

    When communities find solutions to their problems independent of the WMF, it is not the WMF's place to overrule them unless there is actual harm to the interface or it requires significant expenditure of precious WMF resources. There are no resources being expended here, and there is no harm to the interface. Therefore, you should not be reverting on behalf of the WMF. It is precisely this "our needs are greater than yours" attitude, especially when there is a known problem that is not going to be resolved by what is being tested in the experiment, that creates such friction between WMF staff and communities. Please reconsider. Risker (talk) 16:58, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

    • I most definitely do not think it's a "our needs are greater" situation. We're trying to solve the same problem, which is that IP editors may not be fully aware of the dichotomy and tradeoffs they make when edit without logging in. I think that really is a problem that needs solving. We are just saying that we need to try one solution at a time, so that we can objectively evaluate them each. Have you seen the version we're testing on desktop this week? The pre-edit warning in particular is likely to be more effective at warning people than any mid-edit warning. We just need to test these to see if they have a negative unintended consequences. When we make warnings and messages louder, there is always a balance, and by objectively measuring the consequences of a UI change directed at people we can really know, not just guess, whether we had the intended impact. There are around 350,000 unique IPs editing English Wikipedia every month, and I think we owe it to them to tread carefully when it comes to making warnings louder and more interruptive. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 21:19, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
    • Oh, and I forgot to say... I don't necessarily agree no one sees this. About 12% of English Wikipedia new registrations come directly from users clicking on the signup link in this message (data). That's more than 14,000 new accounts every month, a higher proportion of which edit than other kinds of new accounts. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 22:13, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
Here is a smaller and more discreet version, the previous version was too tall at 150px.

This looks OK to me.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 18:15, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

I think this is closer to a well-balanced version, but I'm concerned the red is still too much. I asked one of our designers, Kaitymh to take a pass on an alternative warning icon. I agree the key doesn't necessarily convey warning as much. We can also potentially play with the background color to make it stand out more. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 21:12, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
That looks fine to me, though I prefer the yellow exclamation point triangle, or the orange exclamation point circle. -- (talk) 05:08, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
Based on Kaity's design, how about the following style...

Anoneditwarning proposal.png

...I think this version is more like a warning, but is also clearer. One change: should we put login as the primary option? Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 22:13, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

-- (talk) 05:08, 24 May 2014 (UTC)

  • Grey background is almost invisible; it doesn't look like a warning. Warnings normally involve at least two bold colours, including a bold-coloured background; they shouldn't be subtle or they're not warnings, they're wallpaper. The yellow-orange triangle and the orange exclamation point on an orange-yellow background is not distinctive enough to highlight the graphic that is intended to warn; instead, the graphic fades into the colour. The #2 reason for oversight requests (after "personal info of minors") is self-reported logged-out editing, i.e., IP address in the page history; almost all requests come from very experienced editors, with only a few from less experienced editors, and even fewer from new editors. But what percentage of new editors is likely to be determined enough to find out how to get the IP information removed? Risker (talk) 07:10, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
The background colour in the current version is #F8F5C1 which gives a good contrast with white on the rest of the page. The grey background does not work as well in this respect. The version suggested by above is clearer and does not come across as a warning or threat.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 07:20, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
Umm. It is a warning, and it ought to look like one. In fact, this warning was initially targeted at registered users who had been logged out, but within 18 months the warning to new users was added; that originally warned new users that their IP could reveal significant personal information. Risker (talk) 16:12, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
". The yellow-orange triangle and the orange exclamation point on an orange-yellow background is not distinctive enough to highlight the graphic that is intended to warn" Considering that it's much bolder than what is currently there, I think it's a good compromise. Red, such as in what you proposed, is a color normally assigned in interface design for severe errors or bugs, not in basic system alerts. By using red, it suggests something is broken, rather than that we merely want users to be informed. In that regard, a big red warning is overkill. The feedback so far from IPs on this talk page and the Village Pump reflect that. The background with #F8F5C1 is okay, but it doesn't jive well with the rest of the interface, considering we don't use it in most other places. The background color is not really what we want to stand out anyway. The message contents and calls to register or log in are what we want users to focus on, and the icon/highlight color are merely to draw their attention more than the current design. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 18:55, 24 May 2014 (UTC)

Should we tell IP editors that an account can offer more anonymity?[edit]

Although we call IP editors anonymous, their IP address offers more details about them then an account created with an alias. Should we be explaining this to IPs? Dougweller (talk) 14:04, 24 May 2014 (UTC)

If anything, an IP edit offers less anonymity, because it will be recorded in the edit history for many years to come. This is why caution is needed with non-logged in edits. Although IP edits are hard to trace back to an individual person, the media may look at the edit history and draw conclusions that may or may not be reliable.-♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 14:29, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
@Dougweller: I think so. After the current interface changes being tested is done, we could easily test a second iteration where the messaging explicitly calls out privacy/pseudonymity as a reason more. In one of the current two versions being tested, we do call out that creating an account requires no personal information, but we could focus on the privacy tradeoffs with being anonymous much more. Steven Walling (WMF) • talk 18:59, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
Thanks very much. Dougweller (talk) 21:15, 24 May 2014 (UTC)

Protected edit request on 27 October 2014[edit]

There's a vector version, please replace File:AnonEditWarning.png with File:AnonEditWarning.svg.

The appearance will be the same:

Rezonansowy (talk | contribs) 08:55, 27 October 2014 (UTC)

@Rezonansowy: Yes check.svg Done [1] James F. (talk) 21:06, 27 October 2014 (UTC)

Protected edit request on 13 June 2015[edit]

Change [[Wikipedia:Why_create_an_account%3F#Summary_of_benefits|other benefits]] to [[Wikipedia:Why_create_an_account%3F#Benefits explained|other benefits]] to correctly link to the section. L235 (t / c / ping in reply) 19:41, 13 June 2015 (UTC)

[2] Yes check.svg Done James F. (talk) 01:17, 14 June 2015 (UTC)