First of all, congratulations on your recent onboarding to VSTF! I was not aware of this fact when I was initially writing this message, but nonetheless– I wanted to convey a concern we had with a recent report made out to VSTF. (And I apologize if the following message comes across as abrasive, this is not my intention.)
Takriiiia made a report on (at the time) an active vandal. Many vandals are blocked or thwarted by our abuse filters, but as this one managed to subvert the filters that actually mattered– this vandal managed to cause more harm on our wiki than most of our vandals can muster. However, upon the report being addressed, the active vandal was instead deferred to us.
This is a determination that we believe to be an oversight. Since the time of the vandal's initial contribution to the report being addressed, the vandal madeseveralconcerningedits over the span of an hour.
We have since addressed this issue and dealt with the vandal accordingly, but we would just like to request your future consideration and cognizance when it comes to future reports from our wiki or any other wiki. We just wanted to bring this to your attention in hopes that it well help you with other wikis in the future. I wish you best of luck as VSTF, and hope you continue to do well as a wiki well-doer.
Thanks :) And no, it's not abrasive, I saw more angry than that XD
Actually, I know this wiki has many active admins, especially when there were times where spammers attacked the wiki, it was managed super quickly. The first line of defense against vandals it's you, the local admins. And it's not something that we can deny, we can't step directly on your feet (if you see what I mean) X)
As for the vandal themself, I said there were edits that I couldn't confirm as vandalism. And that was the main issue when I saw the report, so I rathered the user to ask the admins about it, since they better know about the situation. If in the contribs I saw only really bad edits (it's like inserting insults, inappropriate text whatever for which wiki it would be, page blanking), there I would have gotten no doubt and it would have been a block. There are things anyway we can't deal with as all that is local content issues or edit warring between users. After, I'll be honest, but all VSTFs don't always have the same specialty everywhere. Most of time they are very good at both dealing with both vandalism and spam, while some others will take care more of vandalism or more take care of spam (I'm more in this last category).
But now I have a bit more info, if ever they come back as a sockpuppet, now this can be better dealt with. :)
So clearly if you have to retain something in what all I said: when we have a doubt generally we either ask users to ask their local admins, and in some cases staff (when it's constant harassment for example), and it's a bit normal since admins are first defense line, VSTF more being a second defense line. It's the line who will act if ever there is no admin at the moment. But now there is a bit more info, this can help a bit :D
I am also an administrator on the Roblox Wikia, where the report was filed, and I have a question regarding your response.
I said there were edits that I couldn't confirm as vandalism
Can I ask what you guys identify as vandalism? I'd expect that this contribution as well as this can easily be identified as vandalism, regardless of the circumstance.
The whole reason the report was filed was due to the active vandal and that all of the staff were offline due to the early morning time that the vandal appeared. Takriiiia is one of our former staff members and has a private channel to report users on the wiki. Knowing that, they would've reported to us had we would have been online.
Like JoTS said, we're not trying to be abrasive or anything of the sort, we're just wondering why VSTF would direct to the local admins when there were pretty obvious contributions of vandalism.
"inserting insults, inappropriate text whatever for which wiki it would be, page blanking"
Said in the earlier post, but these ones are vandalism. Clearly, the first one linked it's easily identifiable, the second one however is more mixed but it's not really this edit that gave me a doubt. All that is false info is not something we can normally deal with. :/
When a VSTF member has a doubt over someone, technically if there are admins active they'll redirect towards them ; if there are none active they may redirect towards staff.
Hope this can help you understand a bit better. So:
- pornography/R18 content, blanking articles, inserting insults in general (replacing text with these works too) or inappropriate text or pictures: we can deal with it
- false info, edit warring, local dispute with admins: these ones we can't intervene
- racial slurs: staff directly
And when we have a doubt over "maybe something is more in the field of a false info" for some contributions (it's what happened) -> it's always local admins to decide about it first, otherwise staff if there is really nobody, but we can't decide for local admins and we can't step over their decisions.
I do want to preface this to thank you for getting back to us and taking time to address our concerns.
That said, even based off of this clarified criteria, it is still our belief as a staff that this report was not addressed satisfactorily. I do want to take a moment to expound upon a few of the concerning contributions I had linked in my original post– and I apologize as some of the links in the original message may have been made less accessible (e.g. "several" contains three distinct links packed together).
From the links in my initial message, the following are five of some of the very first chronological contributions by this vandal on our primarily family-oriented wiki:
We do maintain our belief that deference was not the obvious option, based off of these very first indentifiable contributions from this vandal. We hope that you can agree that there is little room for ambiguity that these are malicious contributions, inline with the criteria you stated.
From our correspondence, I hope that I am not misconstruing our message– we vehemently believe in the tasks performed by you and the rest of the VSTF. I do not mean to convey entitlement on our part by dictating our expectations for those of you who graciously volunteer to clean whole sloughs of wikis. However, we still do place considerable trust that our editors can reliably resort to the VSTF where our local moderation lacks (i.e. U.S. overnight when many of our staff is offline). We did ultimately render appropriate actions to resolve the issue locally, but we only managed this 8 hours after the initial report– which is solely a fault of ours.
To take a page from my original message, we bring this up in hopes that this instance may help with addressing reports from other wikis in the future and mitigate future reports from being overlooked. We do not believe this report is the start of a trend of mishandled reports, but we thought to bring it up anyways for your consideration. Thank you.
Just wanted to let you know I have sent an email to your email address on record regarding some conversations we've had with the VSTF group regarding interest you may have in joining the team. I am letting you know here just in case you do not check your email regularly.
I noticed you have recent activity on the Haircolor Wiki (which I believe is mostly dead editing wise, just comment active). I am from Beauty Lifestyle Wiki a newer wiki which is the amalgamation of skin care, makeup, hair care and hair colour, nail care and nail colour. I have been trying to find any active lifestyle wikis or users to work with and if you are interested feel free to check us out :)
Hey, Now that you've made your first contribution on Community Central, I suppose it wouldn't be too awkward to leave you a message here...
I've always found it interesting when users I haven't heard about before suddenly start reporting spam in batches with pretty big accuracy. I've found it even more interesting when these users seemed to have little to no involvement with the global community based on their contributions to meta hubs of Wikia.
I'll be honest, I'm puzzled by how you decided to fight spam and how you figured there's a lot of it on Community Central, where to look for it and where to report it, but you're doing a really good job with finding and reporting spam and I hope you keep it up. It's great to have another spamfinder on board.
For the "how I decided to fight spam", it's really... By randomness. That may seem silly, but it really happened like this. As for the "where to report it", actually the first reports I made on VSTF was because of a cross-Wiki vandal whose the first account has been banned by the staff itself. One of the admins of the Wiki I was coming from (the English Vocaloid Wiki here) also used VSTF. Some users on this Wiki told about VSTF.
And on VSTF Wiki, then I saw the reports of others, most of them being centered on Community Central. By curiosity I just looked at them, I learnt what kind of accounts they were reporting and when I just looked at the recent activity of the Wiki I found some similar posts seeming to be spam.
Now, how I retrieve the usernames... Several checks.
First one is the activity feed of Community Central. If I see that a blog post/a discussion post is promoting a commercial service -> spam
Also user pages (some of them appear in the activity feed). The ones adding pictures to make promotion of their products -> spam
On user pages themselves, look at the links and the profiles. Many are found out that way.
Finally, the big documentation to how to find them: Special:RecentChanges . Can list some blog posts and discussion posts having spam content that weren't in activity feed, but also lists all the users making different changes. After, it's report of users fitting with the spam profiles (check websites on profile etc). Here most of checks are done randomly in the names, and for the moment the checks aren't done for profiles appearing in red. The least thing that can be suspect, I check, and if I find out there are spam things, report.
When back to VSTF report page, I search for the name of the profile in the current reports, and if not added yet, I add it to the report.
Now it's been few days I sometimes look at the report page and I just decided to help. No particular reason.
I just wanted to pop by and say that I've seen the reports you've been making and they've been very good. :) On the topic of ways to find Spam and Vandalism, though, have you checked out IRC? It's a free and easy-to-access feed of suspicious edits throughout FANDOM. It's a great way to track both Spam and Vandalism, so I thought you might be interested in trying it out. :P
I actually heard about it, but never went to it. For the moment it's just main checks on Special:RecentChanges and on the logs page, if not on Wiki Activity feed. (Yeah, the method changed a bit since the last message in this talk)
After if it's to go on the channel, would probably be only on a part of the day.
I just read the description but it doesn't seem very clear to me. OK, if we want to summon a VSTF member for a report, we can go there. But not sure how we see the feed in IRC... Do you think there could be a way to explain?
One of the channels on IRC is #wikia-vstf where, as you mentioned, you can report things to VSTF more real-time. But there are more channels in Wikia's network of channels than just #wikia-vstf, such as:
#cvn-wikia — live feed of various suspicious edits across Wikia
#cvn-wikia-newusers — feed of new user account creations on Wikia
I suppose the last one might be of interest to you. It does get false positives rather often, but it still catches a lot of spam. The first channel is very useful for catching vandalism, but I suppose that isn't your primary field of focus. :P
Last one and second one most interesting (since I actually use the Logs page to search for freshly created spam accounts, in the case where they already entered a spam website or spammy info in their profile even without the avatar).
Maybe not tonight, but another day in the end of the week I'll give it a try. Thanks :)
Hi, welcome to Community Central! Thanks for your edit to the File:Gi.jpg page.
If you need help, feel free to leave me a message; you may also want to visit the forums or join us on Chat. You can also check the staff blog to keep up-to-date with the latest news and events around FANDOM.