After weeks of discussion and wishes from the Wikipedia community, the developers unveiled a new log for Wikipedia this week. The new-user creation log, developed by Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason, lets Wikipedians monitor when someone registers an account. The new log can be accessed at Special:Log/newusers, and also appears in the Recent Changes.
The response to the log was immediate and positive. "Wonderful," Shimgray called it at the village pump. Antandrus commented at the administrator's noticeboard, "I love it! [It lets you] swat the baddies as they go by."
The community had been clamoring for such a log for many weeks, because of the Willy On Wheels presence. Willy's tactics involved creating multiple accounts, most with "on Wheels" or "Milk" in the user names. The accounts would then be left alone for a certain time period, until the accounts could move pages. (A page-move restriction was introduced to combat Willy; new users must wait a certain amount of time before they have the ability to move pages.) Many of the so-called "sleeper accounts" would then be activated at once, and then the page-move vandalism would start. Thus, with the new log, the accounts can now be spotted easily and blocked before the time period for moves has elapsed, giving the vandal no chance to incur much damage.
The log was proven effective immediately, as several new users (including reincarnations of Willy on Wheels and Milkman) were banned moments after they created accounts. In addition, the new-users log also allows welcomers to more easily greet new Wikipedians as soon as they have registered.