Wikipedia:IP block exemption

Normally, long-term blocks of IP addresses or ranges do not affect logged-in editors. However, it is occasionally necessary to block both anonymous and logged-in editors in this way to prevent disruption using hard block.

Administrators and bots are always exempt from such blocks (with the exception of Tor blocks). Other editors can request IP address block exemption on a per user basis if they can show good cause.

IP address block exemption allows editors to edit without interruption, when their usual IP address would otherwise be blocked through no fault of their own. It can also be used (exceptionally) to allow editing via an anonymizing proxy such as Tor.

Editors granted IP address block exemption should be aware that breach of this policy, including unauthorized editing via proxies, or significant concerns over account abuse or other conduct, may lead to removal of the IP address block exemption.

When it is considered, please document the decision and your experience here so we can learn from your experience.

There are currently 9 users who have the IPBE flag.

Requesting and granting exemptionEdit

The IP address block exemption flag has two main uses:

  • An editor who is unfortunately affected by a block intended to prevent vandalism or disruption, can be given the flag. They will then be able to edit without being affected by any IP address blocks.
  • In highly exceptional circumstances, an editor may be permitted to edit anonymously, via Tor or another anonymizing proxy.

These are handled differently, due to the additional safeguards involved for open proxy usage.

Used to bypass an IP address range blockEdit

Hard IP address range blocks are used to prevent persistent disruption from temporary accounts and sock-puppets within an IP address range. An editor with a credible editing record who would be affected by this measure may be exempted from the block at administrative discretion, allowing them to edit uninterrupted through the IP address range block.

The conditions for granting this are that:

  • the editor's normal (non-proxy) IP address will be disrupted by an IP address block that is placed on a range they usually edit on, through no fault of theirs. (This may be confirmed via autoblock or checkuser)
  • the editor agrees never to misuse the exemption to edit through a blocked anonymizing proxy (this may be checked), and,
  • when the block ends, or ceases to be an issue for the editor, the exemption will be removed by any administrator.

In addition, IP address exemption may also be given by an administrator without a request, to prevent good-faith editors being affected by a hard IP address range block. The editor should be informed that in order to prevent vandalism, a block has been applied to their IP address range, and they have been exempted from it. They should clearly be recommended to read this section, and especially that the flag may be removed if used to edit via a blocked proxy. (See tags and templates below.)

Who may request
A user affected by an IP address block that is unrelated to their editing and that prevents them editing with a logged-in account.
How to request
Request IP address block exemption through the Unblock Ticket Request System. You must ask from your registered account. Requests posted to the user talk page of the IP address will be automatically declined. Administrators granting this right may sometimes need to consult a checkuser to confirm the problem, or may wish to obtain further review by posting the request onto an administrative list or page for discussion if unfamiliar with the case.

Used for anonymous proxy editingEdit

Editing via an anonymous proxy can be easily abused, so it is only granted under exceptional circumstances. Examples of editors who may reasonably request an exemption include users who show they can contribute to the encyclopedia, and (for existing users) with a history of valid non-disruptive contribution, but are either being hindered by restrictive firewalls, or for exceptional reasons must edit via anonymous proxies.

However, many users are known to access through open proxy unknowingly due to the default setting of their browser. Before you apply for IP block exemption (which may take time and is not guaranteed to be granted), you should check the internet connection preference of your browser and change it to no proxy access.

Note that avoidance of checkuser, or specific checkusers, is not usually considered a sufficient reason – concerns over checkusers should be discussed with the Arbitration Committee or ombudsman.

Who may request
An editor who has genuine and exceptional need, and can be trusted not to abuse the right.
How to request
Email the functionaries team or contact a CheckUser directly, explaining why you need to edit via anonymous proxies. Administrators who are contacted through other means may need to consult a checkuser to confirm the problem.


IP address exemption is a privilege given to editors who need it, and who are trusted not to abuse it. Typical reasons why exemption may be removed from an account:

  • No longer needed or insufficient rationale for granting – relevant hard IP address block ended and not anticipated to recur; editor has access to Wikipedia through a non-firewalled IP address, user becomes an administrator, etc.
  • Bad faith or misleading statement in request
  • Credible evidence or concern of abuse (including conflict of interest by granting admin) – in unclear cases questions might be raised before assumptions are made.

As with any block (which exemption removal can effectively be), a neutral administrator may remove the right or seek discussion of perceived issues by the community. Due to the potential for abuse, credible concerns over abuse endorsed by the community may at times be sufficient for removal. However in all cases, removal should be preventative and not punitive.

Administrator's guideEdit

  • If the relevant user's IP address is blocked by a checkuser, verify with the checkuser in advance of granting IP address block exemption that doing so will not adversely affect a block made based on private information available only to checkusers.
  • All IP address block exemptions are subject to review and repeal. Exemption may be, and often will be, withdrawn if there is credible evidence or concern of abuse. It is advisable for administrators to discuss first if in doubt, since a poorly-founded exemption will be quickly withdrawn.
  • When considering IP address block exemption, the editing history of the editor and the abusive range concerned should be carefully reviewed before making a decision.
  • IP address block exemption is granted or removed via Special:UserRights. Editors having the IP address block exempt right are visible as a user group under Special:ListUsers and can be reviewed. (Note that if the editor is an administrator, they will not usually appear in this list.) The reason for granting or removal are given in the relevant user's rights log.
  • Admins can log the granting of rights at Wikipedia talk:IP block exemption/log.

Tags and templatesEdit

  • {{subst:Ipexemptgranted}} (or "{{subst:IPBE}}") contains suggested notes for an editor who has been granted the IP address block exempt right in order to edit through a hard block of their IP address.
  • Suggested narrative for a hard-blocked IP address range: "This IP address range is blocked to prevent vandalism. If you are one of the bona fide users on this IP address range, and affected by this, please request unblocking, and ask for checkuser and IP address block exemption"

See alsoEdit