On Wed, Jun 13, 2012 at 2:42 PM, Risker <risker...@gmail.com> wrote:

>
> I think perhaps I was not clear in what I meant by "nefarious" purposes.
> The IP addresses in our contribution logs have been used by others to
> locate editors, to make allegations against individuals and organizations
> because their IP address showed up in those logs, and so on. It is a key
> reason why "accidentally editing logged out" is one of the top reasons for
> suppression requests, because it can provide a non-negligible amount of
> information about the user.
>

I think I understood what you meant by nefarious, but regardless of the
definition, the point remains: unless you restrict any IP-related data to
administrators and/or CUs, the type of masking FT2 described is ineffective
at improving privacy.

I would put to you that, actually, our publishing of full IP addresses of
> our logged-out contributors is a very significant privacy issue. There is
> no other top-10 website that publishes this information; in fact, the
> number of websites that attributes contributions to specific (often
> traceable) IP addresses is minuscule.  The only rationale that has ever
> been given for publishing of IP addresses is for the purpose of edit
> attribution.  That can be done any number of other ways.
>
> Risker
>
>
I have to disagree for several reasons. First, while you are correct that
no other top 10 website publishes IP information of users, that is in no
small part a byproduct of how different Wikipedia is from the other 9.
Without belaboring the point too much, search engines and passive viewing
sites don't publish user information at all in any format, and commercial
social networks have a wholly different set of interests than do Wikimedia
projects.  Second, more complete anonymity is and has always been available
to any editor; while the primary and original purpose of an IP address in
edit history is attribution, it has long been put to many other beneficial
uses. Given that we've had a stable approach to IP addresses for 10 years,
and no rush of demand to change the paradigm, it makes sense to balance the
public benefit nature of the projects against the reasonable privacy needs
(on which we all generally agree). We should discuss that balance rather
than just assume that more perfect privacy is worth significantly less
transparency.
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