[wp-hackers] Proposal: Add a Privacy Option: Anonymise Updates

Robin Adrianse robin.adr at gmail.com
Wed Sep 26 14:27:37 GMT 2007

On 9/26/07, Peter Westwood <peter.westwood at ftwr.co.uk> wrote:

> I am against this, for the following reasons:
> * One of the core design ideas for WordPress is that we don't introduce
> options lightly.  The moment you think of making a feature optional you
> challenge the argument for introducing the feature in the beginning.

The "feature" at hand is uselessly sharing information that obviously quite
a few members of the community feel shouldn't be shared. It's not disabling
the *entire* feature -- Mark Jaquith proved, earlier, that update
notification works perfectly well with a fake URL. Also, they can just
disable it anyways with the two plugins John Blackbourn has released.

* Plugin update notification is the number one requested feature from
> the Ideas section of wordpress.org - The community has spoken and this
> is something that they want.

They wanted plugin update notification, this, in 2 out of 3 options, will
*keep* this.

* The core admin user interface should only contain options for things
> that we expect the majority of our users to want to twiddle with. All
> other optionality should be provided using the filter/hook system which
> allows for advanced users to disable features they don't want.  This is
> to ensure that you don't intimidate the naive user.

Do the "majority of our users" (I'm assuming you mean the
not-so-technically-informed) know what Technorati, pingbacks, Ping-o-matic,
Google crawlers, and etc. mean? I'm banking on not. The privacy page already
has these, and it's not impossible to explain it.

* If we want to provide the option for the tin-foil-hat privacy brigade
> to hide there blog url in outgoing requests from WordPress then
> implementing a centralised UserAgent generator ( as suggested here:
> http://trac.wordpress.org/ticket/5065) with a filter to allow plugins to
> remove parts of the UserAgent string as required is probably the correct
> solution - this gives you a single hook with which to engage your
> tin-foil-hat.  This ensures that your "private" data cannot leak out in
> any direction be it wordpress.org / pingomatic / technorati etc.

That's a bit overboard, don't you think? That code isn't even in the SVN and
can be modified to not provide the URL, yet again, by an option, or failing
that, a plugin.

> --
> Peter Westwood
> http://blog.ftwr.co.uk
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