[OSM-talk] Anonymous Editing

Etienne treasurer at openstreetmap.org
Tue Feb 3 18:06:56 GMT 2009

There was discussion in this forum recently about anonymous editing.
Consequently, the subject was raised at the OSMF board meeting on 24/25
January.  All board members were of the opinion that anonymous editing
should be disallowed.  It was resolved that unless serious and legitimate
objections are received in response to this posting, the board would
recommend that anonymous editing be prohibited.

Currently, if a user had chosen not to publish their identity then when
their edits are published their User ID and Username would not be shown.  It
is proposed that the User ID and Username of all users who make edits will
be made public.  Just to be clear, user's email addresses will not be made
public, but other people will be able to contact them through the OSM
messaging system.

Any user who had not previously made their identity public will not be
affected unless they want to make further edits.  To do so they will need to
explicitly change their user settings to make their identity public.  All
previous edits made will then become public, so previously anonymous
contributions by that user will no longer be anonymous.

New users, creating fresh accounts, have not been given the option to make
anonymous edits for some time now, so this change will only affect a
relatively small number of long standing OSM contributors who have not yet
voluntarily opted to make their edits public.  Anonymous editing is already
prohibited for users of Potlatch, but is still permitted by JOSM and other
tools that use the API.

Unless serious and legimate objections are raised, then the board will
recommend that anonymous editing be prevented as of implementation of the
0.6 API (and hopefully a developer will be kind enough to make some code
changes for us).

For clarity, if you want to make a serious or legitimate objection please
prefix your response on this thread with -1.

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