Wikipedia:Flagged revisions

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Flagged Revisions is an extension to the MediaWiki software (see mw:Extension:FlaggedRevs and mw:help:Extension:FlaggedRevs). It permits the managers of a particular MediaWiki installation to define certain conditions by which trusted editors can rate an article's "revisions" (i.e. its page versions, the individual entries in the article's history) and to "flag" one of those revisions (i.e., to set it as the default revision to show upon normal page view).

The extension can be configured in a number of ways. On the English Wikipedia it is configured as Wikipedia:Pending changes, a lightweight version used only on problematic articles. Several proposals had previously been discussed and considered for trial (see Community proposals for various options).


For a description of the implementation on the English Wikipedia, see Wikipedia:Pending changes

FlaggedRevs is a MediaWiki extension, released on 4 June 2008, which (if installed on a particular wiki) adds revision "tagging" capabilities. A revision, also called version, is a single entry in the history list for a page. One potential use of the implementation would be to set an article such that when a user viewed the article, they would see not the most recent edits to the article, but instead an older version of the article that had been tagged as a clean or "sighted" version. Established Wikipedia editors might be granted rights (possibly automatically) that would let them review page revisions and determine whether the flag on an article should be reset to a more recent version.

When a revision is reviewed by a trusted editor, that revision is tagged in the edit history, while in the meantime, article development can proceed with the most recent revision. If changes to the page seem constructive, any reviewer can tag the new version.

Note that for pages where the latest flagged version is shown, logged-in users, even new users, could still be shown the most recent version irrespective of what version is tagged by default. For the outside world, one could choose to show the most recent flagged revision, but there are various ways to configure the extension.

It is up to the community to fashion proposals which set the specific procedures for reviewing.

Some implementations, such as those used or considered on the English Wikipedia, can be very targeted and light weight compared to 'classic' flagged revisions, for example by only preventing the visibility of new edits by unregistered or new users, only on certain problematic pages or when the edit is identified as suspicious by an automated process (the later still requires development).

Release history[edit]

FlaggedRevs was made available on request released for all wikis it on 4 June 2008, following an extensive public beta-test on a dedicated test Wiki. It is up to each Wiki community to decide how they wish to use the system, or if they want to use it at all.

On 6 May 2008, Flagged Revisions were enabled, first for a test, on the German Wikipedia. After an extended test period with lots of bug fixing and massive controversial discussions, a straw poll was organized in August. Over 1,200 users contributed, with the majority voting in favor of the new system.

English Wikipedia community proposals[edit]

Pending changes[edit]

The proposal for flagged protection and patrolled revisions gained consensus for a trial implementation; a prolonged trial of pending changes (new name for flagged protection) closed without a clear consensus in September 2010 and the system was removed from articles in May 2011. After considerable discussion on how to proceed, the feature was re-enabled on 1 December 2012. This system is considerably less restrictive than all previous implementations, since it automatically reviews all users registered for 4 days and with 10 edits, and is applied only on a specific article in response to significant and persistent vandalism or other clear policy violations, so as a form of page protection rather than a wholesale preventive measure. The patrolled revisions part was not implemented. A new related proposal is deferred changes, where only edits identified as suspicious by an automated process (the edit filter or a bot) are deferred for review.

Unsuccessful proposals[edit]

The following were specific proposals on possible ways to deploy this feature on the English Wikipedia which did not gain consensus:

  • Sighted versions proposes to use a very light-weight validation process, where almost anyone can tag a page as "sighted", in order to combat vandalism.
  • Quality versions proposes to tag versions of articles that have gone through a quality assurance process based on the consensus of editors.
  • Reliable revisions proposes two user access groups with different rights to rate article revisions and set article revisions as default.
  • Checkpoints and grading proposes a lower-overhead mechanism for tagging specific revisions for both suitability and quality, with an eye toward maintaining progress.
  • Wikipedia:Protecting BLP articles feeler survey
  • Wikipedia:Delayed revisions - Edits by anonymous and non-auto-confirmed editors would be delayed for two hours, giving us a chance to revert vandalism before it is published while still keeping the principle of publication without the need for editorial review.
  • Several trial proposals were proposed at Wikipedia:Flagged revisions/Trial/Proposed trials, related poll.
  • Tabbed revisions; a proposal to display 'reviewed' edits and 'new' edits on two separate tabs. Anyone can edit the page tabbed 'new'. All articles would be tabbed.
  • Reviewed editions; a proposal to show links to revised editions as well as unrevised content, similar to the proposal for tabbed revisions. Revised editions could be updated annually. All articles would be treated this way.
  • Revised featured content; a proposal to produce revised editions of featured content, as well as a print edition. Only featured content would be revised.


Available statistics are at:

Projects that apply FlaggedRevs[edit]

Please refer to the WMF config file FlaggedRevs.php for an up to date list. The $wgFlaggedRevsRestrictionLevels setting determines if FlaggedRevs is used as a protection mechanism or not.


These wikis use the 'English' approach, in which an administrator must activate FlaggedRevs on each page where it is used (although they may use it in different ways):

These wikis use the 'German' approach, in which all pages have FlaggedRevs enabled after being reviewed once (although they may use it in different ways):


For more information on the use FlaggedRevs on other Wikipedias and Wikimedia projects, see meta:FlaggedRevs.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]