Community Wishlist Survey 2021/Admins and patrollers/Automatically detect edit-warring

Automatically detect edit-warring

  • Problem: Bringing edit-warring to the admins' attention currently requires editors that have the time to go through a fairly bureaucratic process.
  • Who would benefit: Editors who wish edit-warring to be more strictly enforced against, and administrators/other editors who wish to enforce it more strictly or just arbitrate conflicts.
  • Proposed solution: Add a function that automatically compares every new revision against all those of the last 24 hours, and then flags to the administrators or other editors if it detects the same text being added or removed more than three times (as per the three revert rule).
  • More comments : There could still be a separate process for making formal complaints, and this could simply be a way to get attention that there is a conflict brewing, preventing things from getting out of hand earlier. Further comment: it seems that the current process for edit-warring complaints is extremely inefficient, with complaints being archived without any attention having been given to them. Therefore, perhaps this function should automatically give short blocks for first time breakers (24hrs) and longer ones for repeat offenders (72hrs and more). I think having complaints not addressed at all is extremely disappointing, and perhaps a reason for editors to stop contributing.
  • Phabricator tickets:
  • Proposer: Keepcalmandchill (talk) 04:19, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  • This seems like something that could be easily automated and would make it a lot simpler to detect edit-warring and hopefully keep it from festering. Jessamyn (talk) 04:36, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This should be a lot easier to build now thanks to the reverted edit tag. You might even be able to write a Quarry query for it. MusikAnimal talk 05:36, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • It would be even easier if the event stream included events for reverted edits (i.e. whenever the reverted edit tag is set on an edit). --Count Count (talk) 19:17, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I've seen some research on this topic that is interesting (unfortunately the results of which are predominantly not used by wiki editors). --Izno (talk) 19:51, 17 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This shouldn't be too hard, but I do think you'd need to take some steps to avoid major false positives. I don't know how general the auto-tagging system is, but with that en-centric bias noted, you'd want to have edits with "potential vandalism/blanking/etc" tags discounted, so edits reverting them wouldn't count. The pages are already being handled and so pulling further attention to it is unneeded Nosebagbear (talk) 15:03, 18 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • There are various other issues with this, as well. For an enwiki example, reverting against consensus doesn't really need to be reported to ANEW. Bots wouldn't really need to report for 3RRNO exceptions either. As such, I think it's best this be done on a per-project level, with a bot, if needed. ProcrastinatingReader (talk) 06:46, 1 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I'm going to move this to the Admins & patrollers category, since the proposal is more about moderation than it is about improvements to editing. Hope this is okay, MusikAnimal (WMF) (talk) 20:22, 24 November 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This should probably be implemented at the community/bot level, at the discretion of each local community. Now that we have the reverted edit tag, each local community can action automatically-detected edit warring as it sees fit without further WMF technical effort. Best, KevinL (aka L235 · t) 06:39, 1 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support with reservation. I agree with the problem, but not sure with solution. It's not difficulty to create automatic detection but once it's implemented, it's also very easy to bypass and circumvent. It motives warriors to change their behavior and make it hard to detect. Xinbenlv (talk) 22:24, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  •   Support Sounds about right – "make it a lot simpler to detect edit-warring and hopefully keep it from festering" by Jessamyn. Waddie96 (talk) 18:21, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support There are already good scripts like "Edit War Checker" that prove this is possible - I fully support incorporating this into the main site! ThadeusOfNazereth (talk) 19:21, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support CrystallineLeMonde (talk) 20:26, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support Silver hr (talk) 20:29, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support That should definitely be implemented. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 21:11, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support YFdyh000 (talk) 23:19, 8 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Oppose better done with bot (eg w:en:User:ProcBot/EW. Not good use of dev resources imo, especially compared to other proposals. What is “edit warring” is mostly defined at a project level, as are exemptions. ProcrastinatingReader (talk) 00:58, 9 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Oppose Anti-vandalism reverts might be a false positive. Firestar464 (talk) 01:23, 9 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support BALA. RTalk 01:33, 9 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support Shizhao (talk) 02:40, 9 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support ✍ Janwo Disk./de:wp 03:21, 9 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Oppose No tool can automatically detect edit warring, because edit warring is about intention. More than three reverts of clear vandalism is not edit warring, but fewer than three reverts can be edit warring. Autoblocks are really undesirable for this reason. This would formally codify 3RR, but each project should be able to set their own revert rules. — Bilorv (talk) 11:25, 9 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Oppose Edit warring is too subjective. No automated tool could accurately determine what is and isn't edit warring. CaptainEek Edits Ho Cap'n! 03:40, 10 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support Would work along with the very first proposal in this list. Penguin330 (talk) 13:57, 10 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support Libcub (talk) 17:55, 10 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Strong oppose --BoldLuis (talk) 18:36, 11 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Oppose this can not be effectively accomplished. DGG (talk) 00:33, 12 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support --Yining Chen (Talk) 00:46, 13 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Oppose, Edit warring is something heavily influenced by psychological and ideological conflicts. Often there are multiple reverts or removal of texts, but you can't take an action against them without understanding the depth of the underlying clashes and confusions created around it. A bot can't handle this subject. You can do something to reduce the bureaucratic complications, but empowering bots with the mechanism to resolve such emphatic issues seems totally impregnable. Ppt2003 (talk) 17:40, 13 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  •   Support Spinney Hill (talk) 13:50, 16 December 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]