Last modified: 2011-03-13 18:05:56 UTC
Currently, there are two ways to contact someone on MediaWiki: talk-page posts
and e-mails. The former is, of course, the more open, "wiki" way to do things;
e-mail can be used for more private communications. But this latter poses a
problem. Specifically, one problem on enwiki at least is vote stacking, where
proponents of a certain side spam possible supporters to go "help them out" and
thus skew the discussion's outcome.
Now, if someone spams talk pages, no big deal: you can just glance through the
histories if you get suspicious, since according to the wiki way everything
related to the project gets logged for public inspection, and then decide what
to do as appropriate. But what if Special:Emailuser is used? In that case,
it's impossible to tell if there was any vote-stacking going on unless one of
the voters admits it.
So, if someone tries to communicate with someone else via e-mail, why not put it
in a log? Just say "X e-mailed Y", and give the timestamp. This allows as many
wiki-related communications as possible to stay comparatively aboveboard
(obviously nothing can be done for IRC, extra-wiki e-mails, RL conversations,
etc.), and allows contact of a user who has left the project or is on wikibreak,
while still providing privacy for those who don't want everyone reading their
Of course, this should be a per-wiki option, since some probably won't want it.
This would be a serious privacy issue. The existence of such
logging would need to be made very public and obvious, and it
could totally change the character of such contact.
WONTFIXing this; cannot do such without a wide base of
community support already in place.