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Allow bots to mark some edits as non-bot
Closed, InvalidPublic

Description

Once a bot account is given the "bot flag" (i.e. added to the "bots" user group) all of its edits are marked as bot edits. This makes sense in most cases, because bots are mostly used for high speed editing and typically for minor edits. However, there are use cases where a bot account is used to automate a non-trivial edit (e.g. occasionally updating a list of users or pages which meet a certain criteria by running queries on the database). In these cases, it is actually desirable for the edit to show in recent changes, and we should allow bots to selectively mark these edits as non-bot edits.

The opposite (allowing non-bot users to mark individual edits as bot edits) is already supported and sysops can use this feature as needed. In the MW API it is captured through the bot property of the edit action.

Also, a similar feature is already available in the API where we have two properties for the edit action, one called minor to mark a specific edit as minor, and another called notminor which allows the user to not mark this edit as a minor edit even if the "Mark all edits minor by default" user preference is set.

In light of the latter, I suggest we should call this new feature notbot. If the user is not a bot, it should be ignored. If the user is a bot, setting it to true should allow the bot edit to NOT be marked as a bot edit and hence appear in recent changes.

Unlike the "bot" feature which is also available through a URL parameter (I believe it is ...&bot=true...), there is no need to implement this one as a URL parameter. Having it available in the API is all that is needed.

Once this feature is implemented, Pywikibot should also be modified to add support for it. But that is for a later task.

I will leave this alone for a few days to get feedback, before working on a patch for it, which should be simple I hope.

Event Timeline

Huji created this task.Aug 10 2019, 10:17 PM
Restricted Application added a subscriber: Aklapper. · View Herald TranscriptAug 10 2019, 10:17 PM

+1, nothing to say :-).

There is already a bot parameter for the api that, if not passed, results in the edit not being marked as a bot edit...

Codes or scripts should only edit via api.php rather that index.php, and the former does provide the choice between "bot" and "nonbot". Thus I would suggest close this as invalid.

Huji closed this task as Invalid.Aug 11 2019, 1:27 AM

I did not know that if you do not specify the bot parameter it would mean the edit won't be labeled as a bot edit. Since we had both minor and notminor I just assumed we would also need notbot. I just verified that what @Antigng said is actually correct, hence marking the task as invalid.