When a user "logs on" or enters a multi-user environment, they normally must provide a user identification code (ID) and a password. The former is provided to them by the system administrator; the latter they are free to choose. This process assures that they are uniquely identified to the system for purposes of file access, billing, work environment customization, and so on.
An effective multi-user hypertext system would use this same process. Nodes or links could then be automatically labelled with the author's ID on creation. Access to other nodes could be determined based on the current user, the original author, and the status assigned the node by that author.