Forum:Custodians and MediaWiki

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Forums: Yew Grove > Custodians and MediaWiki
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This thread was archived on 5 April 2011 by Haloolah123.

As of right now, there are 40 administrators and 124 custodians. Out of the 40, less than half are active and even fewer monitor the SVN -or TRAC- Wikia code-base(s) and/or know what each interface message represents within the wiki. This proposal is to rectify this by doing one initial plan of action and a secondary objective if the issue is raised. Over the past several months, more and more of the edits to the interface were made with requests through either Administrator requests, IRC or the in-game Clan Chat. I wish to change this by allowing those that actively request such changes to happen on their own watch.

Add the group right [[MediaWiki:Right-editinterface|<code>editinterface</code>]] to the Custodian usergroup to allow editing within the MediaWiki namespace. The second part of this proposal would to increase the amount of mainspace edits it would take to obtain the group right of Custodian from 400 edits to 600 if the issue stars a debate.

The purpose of this proposal was made in response to the growing amount of anti-vandalism needed to obtain the sysop group right. While many people think all it's about is blocking and warning users when adding their response for consensus in a request for administrator rights, there are other aspects to it that should be made clear. Not everyone would need to block, some users would only need the ability to change the interface, CSS or JS without the need of an administrator. The only right given will not allow Custodians to edit other users JS or CSS or edit protected pages. When it became virtually impossible to pass an RfA without a heavy anti-vandalism background in editing, it became clear that other users still need the ability to change the interface and yet not the need to block users.

Discussion[edit source]

Support - As proposer. Ryan PM 05:41, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Question How many of these custodians would know what to do with this? It would be simpler and make more sense to try to get you sysopped.--Degenret01 05:44, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

This has been a question of mine as well regarding who would know what to do with it, but I didn't think that another usergroup would have been needed to created in conjunction with this to begin a new batch of users. That being said, Custodians sounded like the group that would use such for benefiting the wiki rather than making a Interface group. Kind of how Wikia now has the Internal group for contractors to Wikia or the [[w:c:communitycouncil|Community Council]] with people they trust rather than giving them staff or administrator rights respectively. Ryan PM 05:53, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Support - It's better to let people be able to access things easier. If there seems to be vandalism in this namespace (or just plain dumb edits) the user should have their rights removed or be warned respectively. As all MW pages affect the whole wiki, nothing bad should be accepted, but I do think it would be good to give people easier access to this. JOEYTJE50TALKpull my finger 10:32, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Support - These additions make sense and are beneficial, though I would support tougher restrictions, 600-odd edits isn't very much. 222 talk 10:46, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - Per Ajr. But Custodians still need much tougher restrictions. 222 talk 05:35, March 26, 2011 (UTC)
I've got your tougher restrictions right here. Magic-icon.pngStelercusIlluminated Book of Balance.png 18:37, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
*Like* - Wikia needs a like button like facebook. HaloTalk 23:44, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - The sitenotice alone, in my opinion, is a reason in and of itself to limit the interface to administrators. There are plenty of custodians I trust with that ability, though I would also support all of their RFAs. Furthermore, if one cannot pass an RFA, I probably wouldn't trust them with editinterface, either. Magic-icon.pngStelercusIlluminated Book of Balance.png 18:37, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

A RfA isn't only about trust. There are a hell lot of other factors. bad_fetustalk 18:46, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
Yes, such as understanding of our policies. I also expect this from somebody who can edit the interface. Magic-icon.pngStelercusIlluminated Book of Balance.png 19:39, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
And such as a need for tools. Seriously, nobody would support a RfA because the person needs to edit MediaWiki pages. bad_fetustalk 19:46, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
I despise the concept of "needing the tools..." Regardless, editing the interface is certainly a "need" in that consideration, so I fail to see why such users shouldn't begin an RfA. Leftiness 23:18, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
Stelercus, if it is mainly about the sitenotice(that's a reason in and of itself), I'd like to ask you to look very carefully at the source code of the Sitenotice. There you can see [[MediaWiki:Community-corner/message]] is transcluded. That message then holds a transclusion of Template:Wiki News(protected) and RuneScape:Events Team/Notice(semiprotected). So basically, every autoconfirmed user(we got a lot of those) is able to edit the Sitenotice. That may then be a reason in and on itself, but I don't really consider it a very strong reason in and on itself, as it's already allowed. It's more about other pages actually. JOEYTJE50TALKpull my finger 19:50, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
It bothers me that the Sitenotice templates aren't protected to admins only, then (aside from the ET notice, because several ET members are non-admins). As Ajr mentioned, however, the ability to edit the css/js files is huge. Magic-icon.pngStelercusIlluminated Book of Balance.png 11:26, March 26, 2011 (UTC)
So it doesn't bother you at all? Then why worry? The only page that is editable by others is the ET notice, and you said that doesn't bother you. Also, the problem Ajr is talking about is not a problem at all. I dare you break my wiki so far that I need to use monobook to revert it. You can edit my wiki's CSS [[w:c:joeytje50:Template:WikiaCSS|here]] (and JS is not a problem at all, you can simply turn it off in your browser so I'm not even starting to test that) And even if the css and js is such a big deal, we could still let the right be given but just permprot the css and js. Problem solved. (I am still only convinced that the right to edit it is such a risk when someone is able to let me have to switch skins to undo it("pics or it won't happen). The first person able to do so gets a cookie.)
Say we protect the CSS and JS files to admins only and give the editinterface right to custodians (so they can edit everything else). What is that going to accomplish? Magic-icon.pngStelercusIlluminated Book of Balance.png 18:50, March 26, 2011 (UTC)
Less requests admins need to do. Also, like I said, I don't believe someting really bad could happen unless I [[w:c:joeytje50:Template:WikiaCSS|see it happen]]. JOEYTJE50TALKpull my finger 20:27, March 26, 2011 (UTC)
First of all, why on Earth would we publicly display css/js that could be harmful to a wiki? That isn't our goal here - in fact, our goal is quite the opposite. The point of our opposing isn't to say that there is the possibility of irreparable abuse. This is a wiki, and fortunately every single action can be reverted some way or another. However, this right has the potential to cause more damage than block, protect, protectsite and delete combined, and as such we (the opposers) feel that it is best reserved for those who have passed some sort of selection process.' We shouldn't need to show you anything, you should be able to use your intellect and knowledge of wikis to imagine some of the possible abuses. Also, as a final note, the other thing about being able to edit the interface is the possibility of good faith mistakes. I've made quite a few of those myself, and I think that anyone who has the know-how to edit the css/js well should be able to pass an RfA anyways. ajr 21:12, March 26, 2011 (UTC)
That bolding was not really needed, was it? And no, Evil knows how to edit css/js, but still failed 2 RfAs. JOEYTJE50TALKpull my finger 21:53, March 26, 2011 (UTC)
...There we other factors involved there, as you well know...Actually, I think that that bolding was needing, since you have completely missed the point of what I was saying the past three times I said it. Glad to know that it has finally sunk in. ajr 22:15, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

Support - Per above. bad_fetustalk 18:46, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Support - Per everyone else. I personally wouldn't know what to do with that tool, but who's to say a new administrator would either? People can learn, folks. However I think the requirements for Custodian should be bumped way up, like Brains said. Perhaps have it as an add-on that Custodians can request after they've been around a little longer? Regarding the site notice, ^^^ Joey. sssSp7p.pngIjLCqFF.png 19:53, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Support - Most, if not all, of my edits to the MediaWiki namespace are from RS:AR. However, I would also like to see an increase of the amount of edits needed to gain access to the custodian usergroup. svco4bY.png3Gf5N2F.png 20:43, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - Per Ajr. svco4bY.png3Gf5N2F.png 05:20, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - This is something which I believe should be accessed only after consensus. Being able to edit the interface is a more powerful right than block and protect combined - indeed more abusable than even protectsite. With the editinterface right, somebody could literally mess up the wiki so much that Wikia would need to go into their database and "revert" the wiki to the last backup, usually one or two days ago. As such, I'd prefer this to be in the hands of people who have gone through an RfA process, as opposed to something which is just given to whoever asks for it (and has 600+ edits). ajr 23:09, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

"Pics or it can't happen". The only thing I could think of is adding body {display:none;} common.css which is easily reversible using Inspect Elements, or maybe even adding body {display:block !important;} to [[w:c:Special:Mypage/global.css|your global.css]] if you don't know how to use inspect elements. If people start doing this kind of things, or maybe even things that look like vandalism, the rights should be removed per the risk. JOEYTJE50TALKpull my finger 6:27 pm, Today (UTC−5)
As I was explaining to Spam me Plox, I could make every page on the wiki (every namespace, even when editing) be replaced by a black overlay. There would be absolutely nothing that you could do since all the links would be hidden, and so the wiki would need to be reverted to a couple of days ago. The fact that you don't understand the potential for abuse is actually frightening, considering you would get this right should the proposal pass. You can basically do anything that your mind imagines with css/js - as I said above, this tool is the most powerful in the sysop group, so why are we proposing to assign it to a group which does not need to go through any rigorous selection process? ajr 23:33, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
Not to mention a group that doesn't need it...but very good example. This is why I think wikia won't even do this. I mean...if they won't give admins know. HaloTalk 23:40, March 25, 2011 (UTC)
So you would do something like changing an element on the page to a black screen above everything? Indeed, I could do that very easily. It's just that it's also very easy to remove it again with inspect elements. Because you can't remove the edit box and the submit button with any MW page other than the .css and .js pages(blank MW pages automatically change to the default value, and putting the black overlay in for example the edit button would still be disable'able(lolwut) with inspect elements), and JS is easy to disable on every browser and CSS is easily removed in inspect elements, it doesn't need a revert to a backup at all. Also, we had it occur more often that the wiki was inaccessible because of Wikia server maintenance than that we will ever have because of vandals with these rights.  —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Joeytje50 (talk).
Congrats on completely missing my point. It's not that the damage done by abuse isn't revertible in some way shape or form, it is that more damage can be caused by access to this right than any other right available to sysops. Per this proposal, we should also toss in block, protect, delete, and all the rest of the sysop rights to custodian while we're at it. As I've now said a few times, editinterface is the most powerful tool in the sysop package, and I see no reason to add it to a group that can access the right without consensus. ajr 00:15, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - Per Stelercus and Ajr. The only way this could happen is if we made the custodian right more restrictive. --LiquidTalk 23:12, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Strong Oppose - Basically per above. I highly doubt wikia would do this anyways, but I'm just going to go ahead and say-most administrators barely edit mediawiki to start with. It is not often enough that anyone else needs the tools, they can just request them. It has too much of a potential for abuse. HaloTalk 23:21, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - Ryan-if this is just a plea for you to be able to edit Mediawiki-I'll nom you for admin. But I don't trust people with 600 edits and a few months under their belt, because we have some really committed vandals. HaloTalk 23:34, March 25, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - You would be about the only person who actually knows what to do with the tool, except maybe evil, and as people said there are some custodians that only just reach the requirements and aren't necessarily trusted to edit these pages. Hunter cape (t).png Sentra246Blue hallowe'en mask.png 00:43, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

*sadfaec*  JOEYTJE50TALKpull my finger 00:51, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - I don't particularly care about the result of the thread, but I just saw the incredible coincidence that, with two exceptions, all of the administrators are opposing this and all of the custodians are supporting this. Aren't we a little better than that? ʞooɔ 17:32, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

I had a feeling something like this would happen, but I just needed to make sure rather than never create such a proposal to begin with. That being said, I didn't want to see another project using a group for consensus as rigorous as an RfA and not be able use the full rights a sysop could use (an Interface group). I guess it can't be helped. Ryan PM 17:52, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - Has anyone even asked Wikia if this is a change they are willing to make? Based on the inflexibility they have shown on Forum:Allow sysops to use revisiondelete and Forum:Full width file pages, I highly doubt they will even consider making this kind of change. --Aburnett(Talk) 18:01, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - I should point out that every time we add another right to custodian, we have to raise the "entry requirements" a little to make up for that. This effectively defeats the purpose of the group. Entirely. Magic-icon.pngStelercusIlluminated Book of Balance.png 18:43, March 26, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - I really don't see a reason why they would need the right. There are more than enough admins to make the necessary changes when they need to be made. SardominSign Me! 14:32, March 27, 2011 (UTC)

Comment - At the top, Ryan made the point that RfAs seem to be leaning heavily toward anti-vandalism. I'm not particularly active in that area, but I have noticed that one of the most time-honoured opposes for a request is "Doesn't need the tools," by which the opposer means "You haven't undone or reverted anything in six months; who are you going to block?" This proposal would effectively make sysops the police of our wiki; they would block, protect, close threads, and probably do a few other things that I don't care to research. What if that's the point? What if we don't group all of the traditional "sysop" rights into the sysop package? Maybe we shouldn't try to weigh a user's anti-vandalism edits against his file movements and his thread neutrality if he just wants to move files. Maybe we don't support RfAs for people who just want to edit mediawiki files, but it would be less work to determine if someone "needs" a single requested tool than if he "needs" the sysop status, so an RfT(ools) page covering requests for specific rights could solve this problem, and we could do away with RfAs. Unfortunately, I can already see the "too much work" response I'm sure to get... Leftiness 16:16, March 27, 2011 (UTC)

It's not that it would be too much work to do that, but it isn't needed. People who have a true need for the tools, like Ryan PM, can get them so long as they are trusted by the community. The only reason why countervandalism is usually a large focus is because countervandalism tools make up over 50% of the right in the sysop group. Also, now that we have the custodian group with most of the sysop rights aimed at content improvement, more and more RfAs are going to be opposed if the candidate has very little countervandalism experience. ajr 16:19, March 27, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - Per Degen. The ability to edit js/css is an incredibly risky tool to give out, and as Halool said, I doubt Wikia would let us do it. It's better to not throw care into the wind on this since it can lead to us looking like idiots to Wikia. The Custodian group was opened to deal with issues that we had with keeping up, and those are taken care of nicely. Custodians were made not to be the "one step below sysops without an RfA", they were made to help with simple, yet crucial tasks. The task you wish to add is not simple nor crucial at the given time, so it does not fall into their hands as a task in my eyes. Zaros symbol.pngChaos Monk Talk SignCoins 250.png 01:45, April 2, 2011 (UTC)

Oppose - There are going to be a very limited number of people who are going to use this, so expanding it in such a manner wouldn't be all that useful. Anyone well trusted who would use it but is being prevented by their user priviledges should be able to pass a rfa on those grounds. If they cannot then it probably highlights problems with our admin selection process rather than problems with the rights available to usergroups. Henneyj 22:47, April 3, 2011 (UTC)

Closed - There is not consensus to enable custodians access to editing the mediawiki interface. HaloTalk 00:34, April 5, 2011 (UTC)