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I would like to propose creating a new "Patroller" subset of editors. These Patrollers would be given access to a couple of extra tools that would make it easier for them to monitor the Recent Changes page; these tools would also make it possible to share the monitoring workload.
There are a handful of editors (both admins and non-admins) who routinely check through the recent edits. That task can take up a fair bit of time of everybody's time, especially because right now there is probably a lot of wasted effort. For example, if anonymous editor 126.96.36.199 edits a page, then it's likely that a dozen people all check that edit. But if the edit had just consisted of replacing "recieve" with "receive", then it would be much more efficient if the first person to check the edit could just indicate the edit was OK, and save the next eleven people the effort of looking at it.
On the other hand, the current system also makes it easy for some edits to be overlooked. If an edit is made to a Daggerfall page, for example, it's very possible for everyone to skip it, because everybody assumes that someone else will look at it. Or if recent changes gets flooded by 200 batch edits in ten minutes, it's very easy to overlook any other changes made during that time period.
The wiki has a built-in system for patrolling edits. Those of you who have been around for a couple months may remember that red exclamation points used to show up next to all the entries on the recent edit pages. Those exclamation points were used to show that an edit has not yet been patrolled. However, with the old system any editor (even somebody who just signed up for an account an hour ago) could mark edits as patrolled. So the system wasn't too useful: a vandal could immediately mark his vandalism as patrolled. More recently, the patrolling system was changed so that it was only available to admins, but given that there are a lot of non-admins who are already actively involved in patrolling recent edits, why not give those non-admins access to the tools and share the work?
What I'm specifically proposing is that Daveh installs the Patroller extension. This adds a review window to facilitate marking edits that have been patrolled. It also adds a new category of editors named "patrollers". These patrollers would have the ability to see which edits have not been monitored, and in turn mark edits after they've been monitored. All admins would automatically have patroller priviledges. In addition, I'd like to propose that the following editors all be made into patrollers:
(Assuming that all of these people would like to become patrollers).
If this idea meets with community approval, there are still some details that would need to be discussed. For example, what is the procedure in future for adding (or removing) patrollers? And what exactly are the criteria to use when checking edits and deciding whether or not they're OK? Also, I'd like to see whether it's possible to create an alternative to the recent changes page that has a few more features (see User:Nephele/PatrolChanges for my brainstorming; feedback welcome). But before getting into that level of detail, I'd like to start by just seeing whether there is agreement on the general concept.
I'm not trying to divert attention from any of the other active discussions on this page by bring up this proposal right now. Hopefully everyone here has the ability to pay attention to more than two conversations at once :) I just think that making some decisions about patrollers sooner rather than later will help everybody by reducing the amount of effort that has to be devoted to boring maintenance. So how does this idea sound to everybody? --Nephele 02:21, 6 December 2006 (EST)
- This sounds like an excellent idea. You make a number of good points. 188.8.131.52 03:35, 6 December 2006 (EST)
- "Brain overloaded. Can't concentrate..." (Cryptosporidium, Destroy All Humans 1&2) Heh, heh. Seems fine to me. --Wrye 21:50, 6 December 2006 (EST)
- You know I'm in favor of it --Ratwar 22:19, 6 December 2006 (EST)
- (Sorry, I've been a bit slow on the uptake for the past week or so (I have some bug whose primary symptoms are narcolepsy, headaches and general irritability).) I support his idea; it was discussed in IRC several weeks ago (at least it seems like several) but we got sidetracked with other things, I think. Thanks for bringing this back up again. With the activity on the wiki from the Morrowind Redesign Project, plus the recent rash of vandalism that has occurred, it has been difficult to keep up with all the changes in an orderly fashion. Any tools at all that can help us do that would be greatly appreciated. --Hoggwild5 01:48, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- Support, but can I be a patroller too? I haven't been patrolling much in light of recent events, but I would find that tool to be very helpful. --Aristeo | Talk 19:00, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- As I said above, all admins would automatically have patroller privileges. Sorry if that wasn't clear. --Nephele 20:35, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- Would we want admins to automatically have patroller permissions? Or would we want to turn the patroller role into something completely different than the admin role? I think if we gave all admins patroller permissions automatically, then the position of patroller would just be like a "mini-admin". But if we gave the permissions separately, then the role of patroller would be different than the role of adminship.
- Admins already have patrol permission. As far as existing admins are concerned the only thing the extension does is add a new interface for doing patrols. (Or am I misunderstanding the plugin?) I don't understand the point of adding a new interface and then denying its use to a class of people who already allowed to make the same changes in a different way. --Wrye 22:09, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- I think that a certain amount of 'mini-admin-ness' is going to come with the territory of being a patroller, but I think it is obvious that we need a system that works better than the current one, and this one would do that. --Ratwar 22:42, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- Yes, for admins the plugin really just adds one new special page (as far as I can tell). I think it makes sense to just automatically given patroller status to admins (and also is logistically easier, since that's how the patroller class is by default set up). Admins are implicitly expected to be regularly paying attention to the Recent changes page, so I don't see why admins shouldn't be given the same tools. And to the extent that people patrolling recent changes are the primary source of admin tasks (blocking vandals, renaming pages put in wrong place, deleting nonsense pages, etc.), there is going to be some amount 'mini-admin-ness' to the job, whether or not there is overlap between the patroller and admin classes. So I'm not sure that I understand the motivation behind wanting to separate the two sets of responsibilities. --Nephele 11:25, 8 December 2006 (EST)
- I think this is a good idea. Is it possible for the partollers to "remove" edits from the Recent Changes. For example, with the recent spammer, 101 edits were made in 10 minutes (50 pages blanked by 184.108.40.206, User Blocked by Daveh, 50 pages reverted by Daveh), effectivly removing all other edits for people not setting their view system to 250 or 500 and making the other edits dissappear faster for those who are. If these edits could be marked invisible or something by the patrollers, then it would be possible to see the other edits. In addition, would it be possible to see only unmarked edits in the Recent Changes page? --Dylnuge(talk · edits) 21:32, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- Sounds like a good idea to me. Regarding the future adding/removing of patrollers, I'd suggest something along the lines of "Any existing patroller/admin can propose a new patroller. The vote for the new patroller must be unanimous, with a one month probabation period, after which a brief discussion between anyone with comments on the new patroller can result in a re-vote if needed." As for removal of patrollers, again, a vote to remove any patroller who's been inactive for more than some period of time (4-6 months or something) should do. I don't think there needs to be a specific hard limit on the number of patrollers, the voting process should take care of ensuring we don't go overboard in getting new people, and I'm sure that if we find there are too many patrollers, people will be happy enough to step down. — EndarethTalk–Edits 22:48, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- My only disagreement is that I don't think there's such a thing as "too many" patrollers, or admins, for that matter, provided that all the people with those rights are qualified to do so and use them responsibly. Part of the problem I think we've had lately is that the small number of active admins get swamped with the admin-tasks, which can lead to burn-out. Spreading the work out to more people helps everyone in the long run. (Again, applicants must prove they are qualified and trustworthy to earn such rights, so I'm not saying go crazy and give them out to everyone. But provided people are capable of doing the job well, the more the better, I say.) --TheRealLurlock Talk 23:44, 7 December 2006 (EST)
- It has not been posted here yet, but I believe that the system has been implimented. Not sure, but I am getting an option in recent changes to hide patrolled edits, and it works. --Dylnuge(talk · edits) 22:51, 20 December 2006 (EST)
- I'm not aware of any changes related to patrolling being made lately. In particular, the Patroller extension definitely has not been added yet. However, "patrolled edits" have always existed as part of the wiki; at the moment, the ability to mark edits as patrolled is only available to administrators. This proposal is to extend that capability to a new group of editors labeled as Patrollers. As an admin, I can't see what the recent changes page looks like to most editors, but it's very possible that "hide patrolled edits" has always been an option for all users. --Nephele 23:36, 20 December 2006 (EST)
- Thanks for the quick reply, Werdnanoslen :) Your name is now officially on the list; I'll let everyone know when this gets implemented. --Nephele 14:19, 7 January 2007 (EST)
I like the idea of having patrollers, since it'll make it a lot easier to check (or rather not check again) new edits. As I have found myself doing this work most of the time for Morrowind, I wouldn't mind becoming a patroller as Nephele suggests. --DrPhoton 03:36, 8 January 2007 (EST)