[mw-devel] [Milliways V3] #42: mw should output a sanitised log file

Milliways V3 mw-devel at sucs.org
Sun Oct 26 14:30:47 GMT 2008

#42: mw should output a sanitised log file
  Reporter:  chckens      |       Owner:  arthur
      Type:  enhancement  |      Status:  new   
  Priority:  minor        |   Milestone:        
 Component:  talker       |     Version:        
Resolution:               |    Keywords:        
Comment (by cmckenna):

 While I hope we never need to refer to it, having a log of private
 conversations would be extremely useful in cases of (alleged) harassment
 or other illegal activity (I know that sounds very 1984/New Labour, but
 that isn't my intention).

 Because the context of such messages could very well be important I would
 not recommend splitting them from the main log, for example
 user1 | SAY | that's very sexy
 user2 | WHISPER to user1 | I'm even sexier
 user1 | SAY | no, I'm doing much tonight
 user2 | WHISPER to user 1 | yes you are! I'm doing you!
 user1 | EMOTE | is fed up with people not taking "no" for an answer
 user2 | WHISPER to user 1 | Bitch! How dare you say no to me! You know you
 want me

 Instead of two logs though, what I suggest is that there is a log viewer
 application which filters the logs and shows you only things that you
 would have seen had you been logged on at the time. The easiest way to do
 this would be for the view app to have read access to the mw user db so
 that you log into it with your mw username and password, and it filters
 the logs based on your privs.

 This app could then be extended to offer such features as a GUI interface,
 filtering by room, browsing forward from a certain time (e.g. if a
 conversation starts at 23:30 and carries on into the next day, you don't
 need to worry about regexing different dates), timezone conversion, etc,

 The only issues with this that I can think of are
  1. It wouldn't be time-limited, so e.g. if you were given wiz access
 today, you could would be able to see wiz conversations from before today.
  1. notsaytos and multiple users. Based on the "you see what you would
 have seen" principle, I would be able to read conversations excluding
 !FireFury, but not conversations excluding myself. The problem is that I
 have three mw users (Thryduulf, Awkward and cmckenna) and I could log into
 the viewer as Awkward and see conversations excluding Thryduulf. I can
 think of some possible ways around this one:
    1. Linking users - ie. tell it to treat Thryduulf, Awkward and cmckenna
 as the same - ie. don't show (-Thryduulf) stuff to Awkward, but this
 requires knowledge (that you need to do this, and how to do this) and
 honesty - if someone were wanting to see what others were saying about
 them then they're unlikely to honestly declare that they are both
 user:FabulousDay and user:Constantine
    1. Restricting the viewer to sucs usernames - i.e. I would only be able
 to log on to it as cmckenna. I could give user:cmckenna Wiz privs
 (currently it has no privs, as there is no need for more) so I could
 legitimately see wiz (Thryduulf does have the priv) but again it would
 require either linking the users to avoid showing me (-Thryduulf)
 conversations. This would actually be less of an issue above, as the
 number of people who have different mw and sucs usernames is limited and
 they could all be explicitly linked with comparative ease. This would of
 course prevent non-sucs members from using it, which chckens suggests
    1. Not showing any NOTSAYTOs. I dislike this as overly draconian for
 the amount of potential abuse, and it would likely lead to context
 problems as noted above.
  1. It would probably require more effort than two logs, but I really
 don't think that should be used as an excuse to do that rather than this.

Ticket URL: <http://projects.sucs.org/projects/mw/ticket/42#comment:2>
Milliways V3 <http://projects.sucs.org/projects/mw>
The current, stable version of SUCS' BBS and talker system

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