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Block message for partial blocks is potentially misleading
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Description

The block message shown for a partially blocked user begins: "Your username or IP address has been blocked from editing this page. You can still edit other pages on this wiki".

This is potentially misleading, since:

  1. It may imply to the user that they are able to edit articles. This may not be the case, e.g. if the user is blocked from the Main article namespace - which may be the most common type of namespace block, as demonstrated in a recent research showcase: https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/File:First_Insights_from_Partial_Blocks_in_Wikimedia_Wikis.pdf
  2. It implies that the block error was thrown because the user was trying to edit. In fact many actions can lead to a block error being thrown. We have overridden this message for Special:EmailUser (which is problematic: T226990), but not for other actions.

Ideas of what we could do instead

To solve (1):

  • state that they may be able to edit other pages on this wiki
  • state that they may be able to perform other actions on this wiki
  • not comment on the likelihood of what else they are able to do

To solve (2):

  • remove the reference to editing from the first sentence, e.g. "Your username or IP address has been blocked from doing this." - the message is still different from the sitewide blocked message, which states "Your username or IP address has been blocked".

Details

Related Gerrit Patches:

Event Timeline

Restricted Application added subscribers: MGChecker, Aklapper. · View Herald TranscriptSep 18 2019, 11:29 AM

Or just treat namespace blocks as another, special case than the others?

Tchanders updated the task description. (Show Details)Oct 17 2019, 12:27 PM

I've updated the description to go into more detail about some of the problems with the partial block message.

@MGChecker That's an interesting idea. I think it could get a bit complicated though, since the message would need to be different depending on which namespace the user was blocked from (e.g. if blocked only from the File namespace then they could still edit articles).

I think making the message more generic could be the cleaner solution. E.g. "Your username or IP address has been blocked from doing this. You may still be able to do other things on this site, such as editing certain articles."

@Niharika I'd also be interested to hear your thoughts on this idea, and the wording?

Change 543846 had a related patch set uploaded (by Tchanders; owner: Tchanders):
[mediawiki/core@master] Make partial block error message more generic

https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/543846

@Tchanders I like the idea. Another thing we can do to solve #2 is to change it to be Your username or IP address is blocked instead of has been blocked. That reduces the implication that their editing attempt caused the block, I think.
So something like Your username or IP address is blocked from doing this. You may still be able to do other things on this site, such as editing certain articles.

Niharika closed this task as Resolved.Oct 17 2019, 6:24 PM
Niharika claimed this task.

Change 543846 merged by jenkins-bot:
[mediawiki/core@master] Make partial block error message more generic

https://gerrit.wikimedia.org/r/543846