[OSM-talk] Disallow Anonymous Edits NOW

Frederik Ramm frederik at remote.org
Sun Oct 14 23:37:15 BST 2007


> No, but it provides the illusion that people won't break data. 

I guess everyone is aware that the proposed change doesn't help a bit
against vandalism. (On the other hand, the ability to do rollback
is only partly helpful you face anonymous users whom you can't even
tell why you had to roll back their changes!)

> I can still go in and delete all of Oxford, right? And in the mean
> time, a basic freedom has been lost.

Oh come on! What "basic freedom" do you lose by being forced to
provide your (arbitrary!) username to others who have to (or want to)
work with the data you're submitting?

They don't get to know your name, your email, your whereabouts. The
only thing, privacy-wise, is that others may now make a connection:
"The same guy who did this edit also did that one". And even that you
could circumvent easily if you desired.

Your parallel isn't working. 

In the real world to which you seem to allude, most bombs are exploded
by people who want to do harm. They won't be kept from doing that if
you put up signs saying that exploding bombs is not allowed, or if you
capture them on video, or whatever. They are fighting the community,
and it is next to impossible to "educate" them to be members of it.

In the OSM world, most detrimental edits are done by people who don't
know any better. They either think their edits aren't saved, or they
think that they're doing everybody a service, or they see that they
fail but don't know how to fix it. Whatever. These people *want* to
participate, or at least they have an interest in participating. They
do not want to do harm. If they are contactable - and that's all we
want to implement -, they will be contacted and guided to become
valuable members of the community. They will learn that their edits
get noticed and that the project is alive.

I don't see the basic freedom in anonymous edits. Heck, if you really
don't want to be contacted about your edits, then register with a
onetime mail address and don't read it ever after.


Frederik Ramm  ##  eMail frederik at remote.org  ##  N49°00.09' E008°23.33'

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