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Re: [tor-talk] Wikimedia and Tor

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> Thanks for joining the list and starting the conversation. Are there 
> data sets or statistics which quantify tor usage at wikimedia? It might 
> help to frame the discussion if we know the scale of the tor usage or 
> the problem we're trying to address.

Sure, its a problem I care a lot about.  As far as a I know there are
not usage statistics about Tor usage at Wikimedia.  I really wish there
were.  I've brought up the idea of a limited trial period where Tor is
unblocked for a short time (say a few weeks to a month) in order to
collect such data.

I brought up the idea in the technical mailing list, which is the
wrong venue, just to gather some feedback on it.  Once I have my
proposal better formulated I may send it to the community at large.
Sadly these trial period proposals have a rocky history at Wikimedia,
and even if I can make a strong argument and lots of assurances that
it will go away at the end of the trial, I may still not get approval.

> How does wikimedia handle other proxy and VPN users for logins and 
> edits? Would these solutions work for tor users as well? I imagine the 
> vast majority of tor users are just simply trying to get around Internet 
> censorship of some kind; like that at a national level, public schools, 
> restrictive businesses, or free cafe wifi, etc.

Currently they are all hard-blocked as well.  They are handled the exact
same way that Tor is currently.  I'm hoping that any solution that can
be applied to Tor can be applied to them as well.

In very limitted circumstances IP Block Exemptions may be given to highly
trusted editors who have no choice but to edit where they are censored.
For example an IP Block Exemption might be given to an editor of two years
who begins attending a new University where Wikipedia is blocked for some

IP Block Exemptions are also automatically granted to any administrator.
The reason I've been told, why IPBEs are so difficult to acquire, is past
problems with abuse of them.

Two things not quite related to your question, but related to the thread
as a whole.  I've reached out to Lane Rasberry to see if he'd be willing
to help out with this again, and I'll be spending some time to read over
the text that Lane had found and posted back in February.  It looks like
this has also been discussed on Meta (Wikimedia's wiki for discussing
Wikimedia wikis) several times.

Thank you,
Derric Atzrott
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