Forum:Discontinuing Wikia account migration

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Following a discussion between the sysadmins and the Weird Gloop Board, we have decided that next month (exact date TBA), the current ability to "claim" your pre-fork account by logging in on the new wiki(s) will be removed.

Background[edit source]

It is now getting close to two years since we moved the RuneScape Wiki and Old School RuneScape Wiki to our own infrastructure. To ensure that there was a smooth transition, we have maintained a system where users can login with their old Wikia/FANDOM credentials to our wikis and therefore "claim" their account and previous contributions. A large number of users have already logged in and moved over to our new site(s).

With an upcoming long-term support version of MediaWiki on the horizon which we are planning to upgrade to, we want to take the time to reduce some of the technical debt that we have. The migration system we have in place is an example of this. It was instrumental in getting active users over to the forked wikis, but it barely sees any use these days, with a maximum of one user a day using it to reclaim access to their account. It is another extension on a list of extensions that we need to maintain, especially when we upgrade between MediaWiki versions. It would be easier to allow for more user-centric actions to take place on our wikis, such as username changes, if we're not tied to an additional authentication system. We don't expect to fork any other wikis from FANDOM, so it's not going to be required in the future. It's also not really the best approach for migrating users over anyway from a technical standpoint; it is far more suited for single-wiki setups. I would personally much rather - if required at any point in the future - build our own solution that worked similar to Gamepedia/Curse's method of migrating users from WoWWiki to Wowpedia for example, where users verify their identity by making an edit on their old account on FANDOM (or wherever we forked the appropriate wiki from), rather than us handling their login credentials directly.

What does this mean for me?[edit source]

If you have already logged in to the new RS, OS, PT-BR RS, or RSC wikis with your pre-fork account, there is no change for you. You will be able to edit and use the wiki as you have been for the last two years. You do not have to worry about this change.

If you have created a new account on one of our wiki(s), there is no change for you, as above.

If you had an account before the RS, OS, PT-BR RS, or RSC wikis forked from FANDOM, and you have not yet logged in since we forked, you should login as soon as possible and follow the process for setting a new password. If you have problems with this, please contact us as soon as possible.

What happens if I haven't claimed my account?[edit source]

If you have not claimed your account by the time we disable the migration functionality sometime next month, you will have to contact us and manually verify your identity to gain access to your account.

Edits and other contributions from accounts that have not been claimed will not be removed, and will continue to be attributed to the appropriate users.


After next month, we are going to begin deleting stub or broken user and user talk pages from all of our wikis. The user and user talk pages of non-migrated users (some of which haven't edited for over 10 years) are a big burden on our job queue, create ongoing maintenance, and many pages have problems: link rot, old Wikia interlinking, and HTTP image links. These pages will be restorable if the user returns to the wiki in the future.

We also plan to prevent all user and user talk pages from being indexed by Google and other search engines. There's not really a reason that we aren't doing this already, and it will help increase the privacy for our users.

The crossed out section above clearly needs further discussion as a community, so I'm removing it from the post for now to avoid confusion.

Please do not hesitate to ask any questions or raise concerns below.

jayden 15:18, 27 July 2020 (UTC)

Discussion[edit source]

Question - Are we completely sure that deleting old userpages and NOINDEXing all of them is a good idea? Can you quantify the relative burden on the job queue from old userpages versus everything else? It doesn't seem to me like link rot/HTTP images/Wikia interlinking (which can be mostly fixed via bot) justifies deleting all of them, especially when they exist not just for the user themselves but also for the benefit (historical or otherwise) of the rest of the community. I'm really not clear on what problem this actually solves.

Ditto for NOINDEXing all of them – there are plenty of reasons we're not doing this right now. Whether it's for regular readers accessing mainspace-like content from userpages (200k+ Google clicks lifetime) or wiki editors using Google for some sort of investigation, being able to get to userpages via Google is actually very useful. In the exceedingly rare cases where people message us asking for privacy, we can oblige that pretty easily without wrecking the entire userspace flow. ʞooɔ 18:29, 27 July 2020 (UTC)

Question - What is the definition of a stub or a broken userpage for this purpose? cqm talk 18:35, 27 July 2020 (UTC)

Update - I've removed the sections about the user pages for now as we can discuss this separately at a later date. For now, we're only concerned about the Wikia migration. jayden 21:39, 27 July 2020 (UTC)

Comment - What percentage of our users have migrated? I don't expect it to be a majority, so how about what percentage of users that edited in the 2 years prior to the fork? cqm talk 22:03, 27 July 2020 (UTC)