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IP Masking Impact ReportEdit
Hi. I read your interesting IP Masking Impact Report. I just wanted to comment on one thing:
Underlying discussions and concerns around anonymous editing, anonymous vandalism, and bias against unregistered users are unlikely to significantly change if we mask IPs, provided we maintain the ability to edit projects while logged out.
I think that is pretty clearly incorrect. There would definitely be a shift in the discussions around anonymous editing. There would would be increased suspicion, disrespect, disregard, and reverts of masked editors (all of which are already high against IP-editors). Even with the best mask-tools those editors would be more difficult to deal with.
There is also currently a notable but limited level of support for banning IP editors. There would definitely a higher level of support for banning masked editors. The only question is whether that shift would be big enough to constitute a consensus to ban anonymous editors. If the shift is large enough then the masking project would effectively result in a ban. Either the community would demand that the Foundation implement such a ban, or the community has the ability to implement such a ban itself (at least at the project-by-project level, with EnWiki constituting half of our wiki-universe). If that happens then any software built mask users would go unused, as there would be zero anonymous users to mask. Any tools built to deal with masked editors would also be worthless and unused.