Wikipedia:IP users

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

IP users, guest users or unregistered users are users who edit Wikipedia without registering for an account. The term "IP user" comes from the fact that when such a user edits, Wikipedia annotates the edit with the IP address of the computer from which the edit was made where, if the user were logged in, it would show the username of the editor who made it. These substitutes for usernames may have the following general IPv4 or IPv6 forms:

x.x.x.x where x is a number bigger than 0 and smaller than 255
y:y:y:y:y:y:y:y where y is a number between 0 and 65535, written in hexadecimal

The IP user edits are estimated to constitute one-half (54% in 2013) of the general username activity levels. So, among the total daily edits, then about one-third are posted by IP users, while 2/3 (~67%) are logged to specific usernames each time.

While registered editors only occasionally possess one or two legitimate alternate usernames, IP users frequently contribute from different IP addresses because Internet service providers (ISPs) usually assign IP addresses dynamically; meaning that the same actual person may return to Wikipedia with a different IP address that was re-assigned by the ISP. This often makes it difficult to tell whether an IP user is a total newcomer or a returning editor.

See also[edit]

About IP addresses in general[edit]

About editing Wikipedia with or without an account[edit]