|The following is a feature request for Wikipedia, the details of which may still be in development or under discussion. As a whole, this request should be discussed with the developers, who will decide whether or not to act on it.|
|This page in a nutshell: Patrolled revisions provides a way to passively monitor articles through collaborative and coordinated patrolling of article revisions.|
Patrolled revisions is a system of collaborative article monitoring that relies on reviewers marking appropriately checked revisions as patrolled, then comparing new revisions to the previously patrolled ones. It is similar to flagged revisions but doesn't affect at all the version viewed by readers. Patrolled revisions was part, along with flagged protection (renamed to pending changes), of the proposal initially accepted for trial. However the pending changes trial and subsequent reinstatement did not include patrolled revisions. The collaborative aspect of this feature would represent a great improvement in efficiency over individual watchlists or uncoordinated recent changes patrolling.
The aim of patrolled revisions is to improve the monitoring of articles, particularly biographies of living people, using a flagging system maintained by trusted users. Currently, the number of edits to biographies of living people, let alone all articles, is so large that we don't have the resources to properly review them or coordinate their monitoring. Recent changes and watchlists have become largely inefficient for this purpose due to the high volume of editing over so many articles. Semi-automated tools can only provide a partial response to this issue. The concept of patrolled revisions provides reference points for reviewing changes to articles and thus allows site-wide coordination of the reviewing efforts. In addition, the edit filter can highlight suspect revisions so that they are reviewed in priority.
Reviewers can mark a revision patrolled, which informs that the revision should not contain any vandalism, WP:BLP violation, and satisfy certain other requirements given below (#Patrolling section). Patrolling does not affect the revision viewed by unregistered users by default, it's always the latest one (unless the article is placed under pending changes protection). A new revision by a reviewer is automatically patrolled when the previous version is. As such it behaves more like pending changes protection at level 2 than at level 1, the rationale being that edits are not delayed, so one can take more time for patrolling new revisions and this provides greater security.
Reviewers have access to Special:UnPatrolledPages (listing pages that have never been patrolled) and Special:OldPatrolledPages (listing pages patrolled at least once with unpatrolled latest revision). They allow respectively to detect unpatrolled pages, that may not have been checked for vandalism, blp violations, etc, and monitor changes to patrolled pages. Those special pages are filterable by category (for example, Category:Living people). It can also be filtered so that only elements on your watchlist appear, and notes how many users are watching a page.
Patrolled revisions would also allow checking of edits by autoconfirmed users who are not reviewers to level 1 PC-protected pages, as those are automatically accepted when the previous revision is, but would not be automatically patrolled. To avoid work duplication, patrolled revisions are automatically accepted.
The aim of patrolling is to indicate that a revision has no major problem requiring immediate attention. Reviewers are expected to apply common sense when patrolling, and as there is no urgency to patrol edits, they should consider editing the article to fix problems, reverting unconstructive edits, or bring issues to the talk page or the appropriate noticeboards. With the exception of the first patrol, reviewing should be based on an analysis of the diff between the latest patrolled revision and the new revision. The standard is greater for patrolling revisions than for accepting them (on pending changes protected pages).
Previously patrolled pages
A revision should not be marked as patrolled if, since the previous patrol:
- it is not acceptable according to the reviewing criteria, i.e. :
- in addition, checks must be done for straightforward violations of the content policies original research, neutrality, and verifiability
- This includes statements clearly and verifiably incorrect or clearly invented, as well as obvious advocacy.
- finally, edits evidently violating behavioral standards such as sockpuppetry should not be patrolled.
In the absence of any of those reasons for not patrolling, a reviewer is free to patrol the revision if so desired. See this section for information on dealing with ambiguous cases. When a reviewer is uncertain if a revision should be patrolled, it can be left to other reviewers' discretion. All edits, in particular all reverts, must comply with relevant Wikipedia policies - having the ability and intent to patrol revisions is of no influence to one's editing, even in the course of patrolling.
Never patrolled pages
When an article has not previously been patrolled (in this sense), reviewers should verify that in addition to the criteria above, the article satisfies the new pages patrol checks. For example, the article must contain the appropriate maintenance templates (such as if relevant : orphaned, uncategorized, unsourced, etc), must be in Category:living people if the subject is a living person (if it is unknown, this should be brought to the BLP noticeboard), a copyright check must have been performed, etc.
Unpatrolled revisions tagged by the edit filter appear at Special:ProblemChanges, enabling patrollers to review revisions with a high risk of being problematic in priority. This special page currently lists tagged pending changes, and includes system tags (HVVM, visual editor, etc), so would have to be modified for patrolled revisions and only include specified tags. Ideally, administrators should be able to define a list of tags to use and arrange them by order of priority, and the changes would be displayed by order of priority of their tags (the highest on the list in case of multiple tags), then by chronological order.
The autochecked usergroup has currently no use and could be re-purposed to provide a group of users whose edits are automatically patrolled, when the previous revision is already patrolled, with a group autopromotion.