User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 22

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An AfD you might want to comment on

Hello Jimbo. I thought you might want to weigh in on Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Barbara Schwarz (4th nomination). I have already invoked your comments about newsgroup postings, OR, etc. related to your own article, but I thought you would want to comment directly. This article has been troublesome from inception, and isn't something that belongs on Wikipedia, IMHO. - Crockspot 19:37, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

I think that the AfD on Barbara Schwarz is interesting as it speaks mainly to the difference in treatment for a public vs. a non-public person; a differentiation clearly made in WP:BLP. Especially when said person feels strongly that the existence of the article harms her and there are arguments to be made on the issue of notability. In the interest of full disclosure, I brought the AfD. --Justanother 22:13, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

Request to ban user

Hi Jimbo, apologies if this is in the wrong place but I am unclear on the banning policy. Please could you ban User:TomGreen who persistently vandalises Grimsby, Grimsby Town F.C., Conoco Stadium and any other site relating to the English town Grimsby. Not only does he vandalise these pages he also deletes all of the warnings given to him on his talk page. Please advise on best course of action. Many thanks. GrimGary 15:22, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Post to the noticeboard for this type of problems: WP:AIV. Newyorkbrad 15:24, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
WP:AIV is the apropriate place. Had a quick look, and think this is just a content dispute. Don't see any vanalism, other than adding a "Notable connections" source to Grimsby[1], which apears to be apropriate, however negative the conection. --Hu12 15:36, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

A question

--Mr Wales. Quite recently I wrote an article about a Canadian Entrepreneur and Businessman in Canada and submitted the article into the wikipedia. Within days it was earmarked for deletion by editors. I contested, an admin stepped in and invited discussion. I presented the argument as to why it should stay, there were 3 comments and no rebuttals to the argument I put forth after which point it was deleted. It is not even in the logs anymore. Now, my concern is that you yourself have an article in the wikipedia and I don't see the difference between one entrepreneur or another. In fact, I see many articles in wikipedia about various entrepreneurs and yet for some reason my article, despite my reasonable debate and citing of other articles was set upon by editors and admins of this site. This does not paint a favourable light on how wikipedia functions. Either allow articles about entrepreneurs or don't allow them, including your own. Can this possibly be made clear as a bell in the rules and conditions pages? Thanks. djamieson

I suspect this is referring to Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Darius Mosun. --AnonEMouse (squeak) 18:31, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Yes, well thank you anonemouse, that is the "debate" on the matter as you can see, if it's fair to call that a debate at all. Nevertheless, It serves to make my point so thank you for posting a link to it. djamieson

See if this helps. Regards. --Justanother 21:27, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

--Thanks for your input JustAnother, but that is my point exactly. THough one can site policies in this site and make these comments such as yours and provide links, it is rather indiscriminate isn't it? The article in question wasn't a who's who type article, it was more or less along the lines of any informative article about a person. By the way, your terse response is exactly the type of response that I got and that is so frustrating. People say one thing yet do another. So there you have it? I don't think so. The question I am asking has to do with are biographies of persons of import. Are they allowed or are they not? Plain and simple. I cite Mr.Wales article and would ask is Mr.Wales any more important than any other businessman or entrepreneur or is wikipedia merely a personal site for the personal agendas of wikipedians? I await an answer. I would like to continue my project without having to deal with the type of passive agressiveness that is apparently ubiquitous and deformative of the intent of this place which can otherwise be a wider resource. Thanks for your input. Djamieson

As an addendum, I would question the validity of all this -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Businessmen -- The category these articles exist within and so on. Djamieson

Hooray for you

Funkymodem.png Super Funky 28k Modem
I hereby award you this Super Funky 28k Modem for having a last name that begins with W. Smomo 22:13, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Umm...what use does this award serve? bibliomaniac15 04:16, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
What purpose do ANY of the silly awards serve? - CHAIRBOY () 15:37, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
Naive tries at politics? (AGF, mind) Don't mind me though, I'm hardcore :) Gwen Gale 15:40, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
It's quite clear what this award's purpose is - for users that have a last name that beings with W. Nothing more, nothing less. Now stop being fanboys and go and do some editing! Smomo 19:51, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
Now stop being fanboys and go and do some editing!
The irony in that statement is priceless!  :-) —Doug Bell talk 20:04, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
Yep, eyes rollin' :) Gwen Gale 20:09, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
;-) Smomo 20:45, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
As another W person I dont think much of this. 28K? 10Gb would be better, people with W always come last and this slow connection just seems to sum that up, SqueakBox 00:17, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Clarification

In a current arbitration case, an issue has been brought up that may depend on whether a particular quote from you was ex cathedra, so to speak, or not. Specifically, should this[2] be taken to mean that good faith should not be assumed of users posting as IP addresses and effort should not be made to afford them the same process as others, and, if so, is it your personal opinion or are you speaking as project leader? --Random832 21:10, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Autograph pages MFD

Hi. A lot of "Jimbo said ..." arguments are being cited at Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Autograph books. Is it at all possible if you could make a current statement considering the developments at that page? While it doesn't make their arguments any more valid, knowing your current opinion on the matter may still help. Thanks. The Behnam 18:52, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

It's over now. --The preceding comment was signed by User:Sp3000 (talkcontribs) 09:52, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

Page renamed

Somebody renamed the article Sex. You can block him/her from editing articles and pages for Wikipedia. Send me a message please.--Jet123 23:29, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

This page move (made without concensus but apparently in good faith) has been reverted. WjBscribe 23:53, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

WP:NPOV: Do not privilege the scientific point of view

We have a fairly long discussion on the German Wikipedia on NPOV about the question, if Wikipedia should privilege scientific points of view, with a majority of about 80% agreeing, that we should. However, we were told that we couldn't do that, because you would not support this view and your vision on the core policies of Wikipedia would be decisive, no matter, how many Wikipedia editors might disagree with you. Are these two theses correct? AFAIK at least the latter (you determining the content of the core polcies) is not true, at lest not on Wikipedias other than en, which is the only Wikipedia I know of with WP:OFFICE. Fossa?! 02:34, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Actually, the discussion was scientific POVs vs. journalistic POVs. In some fields (cults, smoking, breast inplants, medical drugs) the scientific "industry sources" sometimes disagree with the journalistic sources.
And there was not an 80% consensus :-) --Tilman 17:10, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
Yeah more like 90%. 80.133.146.219 19:37, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
It wasn't just journalistic points of view that would be competing with scientific points of view, but also self-reported information by pseudo-scientific sources, such as articles about creationism, the ex-gay movement, etc. In cases where the scientific community has ignored pseudo-scientific arguments, there is sometimes a lack of disinterested information out there. Some people are arguing that these groups have a right to portray themselves without any criticism if no such criticism has been published; others argue that statements like "the consensus of most experts in psychology and the relevant professional associations is that this is nonsense" should receive more prominent billing than the numerous details the movement itself might want to promulgate. It would be useful if you could comment on Fossa's questions. We can always decide to ignore what you think, but only if we know what it is you think in the first place, and not just what some people say you think based on the way they interpret statements which might be more or less relevant to the situation at hand. :-) --Bhuck 00:55, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
If we are to be the encyclopedia of everything of course we shouldn't favouritise the scientific point of view except when that is also the world's point of view eg the world is round and began 4.5 billion years ago, etc. How would science help an article like Gary Glitter? SqueakBox 01:25, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Guys, you are all besides the point: Discuss these issues in Wikipedia_talk:Neutral_point_of_view or de:Wikipedia_Diskussion:NPOV, there is ample space for your input. This question is about (a) Jimbo Wales' point of view and (b) his insistence or not to implement his POV. Only he can answer this question. Fossa?! 14:02, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

hey

Hey man. I'm a australian wikipedia user and I love cleaning up vandilism and bad articles.

Keep up the good work!

-edit- oops i forgot to sign my post. sorry. normally i do it on all edits :P Cocopopz2005 03:09, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Hope you weren't including me in that edit summary. (Netscott) 07:05, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the quick response and explanation. Back to the discussion. (Netscott) 07:22, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

National Press

I think you should read this morning's British National newspaper the Mail on Sunday. Which devotes a whole page to the Essjay affair. Four high profile politicians and journalist expand their views on Wikipedia. While the page is not totally negative it is far from good or glowing in its praise. Edwina Curry describes Wikipedia as a load of rubbish. The entire inference is that Wikipedia cannot be trusted and relied upon. Giano 11:23, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

No wonder Currie thinks that - our article on her is not exactly one of our proudest moments. I just checked it. Metamagician3000 11:29, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Peter Tatchell, Peter Hitchens were a little more complimentary, but only slightly the sad thing is they only reviewed their own mistake filled bios - Craig Murray was more positive, but the whole page was not good for wikipedia - very damaging. Giano 11:39, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Not to diminish WP's credibility problem in the least, this does rather support the notion there is also a public image thing to deal with here: Journalists have tended to make their own looming mistakes in reporting this, wontedly towards depicting WP as much more unreliable than it is and criticizing Wales for conflicting statements when in truth they've muddled chronologies and concepts themselves. I do think however that most of these publicity woes can be overcome in time if WP truly implements a simple way to thwart MUD CVs and stresses the need for reliable, verifiable support of article content (and I still think asserting a CV, even a vetted one, in an edit dispute should be banned). Cheers :) Gwen Gale 11:54, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
FYI - Link to Daily Mail article is here.[3] KatalavenoTC 12:40, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Currie's remark about Wikipedia's tendancy towards gossip in bios is spot on. I could go on about it but won't, other than to let slip that hearsay reports published by down-market tabloids about romantic entanglements are not, shall we say, academically helpful sources (unless the topic's down market tabloids or whatever). Tabloids don't meet WP's verifiabilty standards and in my experience are but tools for trolls. Gwen Gale 12:47, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Hah...but you got to love it when she states that if anyone wants to to know the facts about her, they should read her website, since she wrote it herself...okie dokie. I think it is important that the general puplic knows that inaccuracies in bios can and will be adjusted...not everything about people is readily citable...but policy is to always remove derogatory information if it is unfounded.--MONGO 17:39, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

[un-indent] While it's not much consolation, I can't help smiling at the story's (typically for the press) inaccurate account of the Essjay row. Metamagician3000 13:00, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

Ahem, that whole thing (high profile people looking up their own bios to evaluate Wikipedia's accuracy) could have been more easily corrected by a wikipedia ban on bios of living persons since as a source of bad information, THAT is most easily checked and abused. I really do know more about my life than anybody else does, and if I have a bio on Wikipedia (which thank God I don't), that's the first thing I'm going to go to, to see how well they function. And if I should do that, Wikipedia is bound to come out the shortest THERE of anyplace you can possibly imagine, since they're writing about a subject in which I'm the ultimate authority, and in which I have the highest of the high in credentials that are relevent: to wit, I'm the guy whose life is being profiled. So we were asking for it, there. Just frigging ASKING for it. And so what do we do instead? We're now actually getting serious proposals to ban people's self-reporting of their own credentials! About which they are ALSO most likely to be authorities, if anybody is. Wacky. Wikipedia seems to be going out of its way to keep people who are likely to know most about a given subject, from writing about it, unless they can back it up by a published citation writen by somebody (like a journalist somewhere quoting one quick and checked source) who are (almost by definition) LESS likely to have the most acurate possible information. But Wikipedia worships the printed page. Who knows why. SBHarris 02:21, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
The public image thing is usually best dealt with by proactive engagement and Wales' refussal to answer Larry Sanger's request [4] for an explanation as to why Wales(after learning about the deception) appointed Essjay to Wikipedia's most important ArbComcommittee will likely give the media even more negative fodder. So far the media (even the tabloids) haven't even noticed the "under the rug swept" edits here and I suppose they may never but it's the wrong approach, I think, if one is attempting to clear the slate and move forward. Any explanation would be better than none from a PR standpoint because then the Press could not start developing a "cover up" leg to the story. 70.48.205.221 14:08, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Fortunately, as far as the press is concerned this is about to become yesterday's news - (unless "some-one" thoughtfully stirs the shit) can we not concentrate on dealing with the issue here, which is making it less likely to happen again, and how it will be addressed if and when it does Giano 14:13, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Agreed, but the focus seems to be entirely upon the credentialism aspect; which is absolutely important; but of equal importance is the judgement abilities of Wikipedia leaders; not of just Wales but also of the General Counsel as to how they handled the deception when it came to their attention. Just think about how this entire matter could have been quietly kept entirely out of the public eye if they had simply recognized the wrongfulness of the deception and worked with EssJay to reverse it, and THEN Wales could have initiated discussion into credentials verification procedures in a PRO-active way rather than reactive. Why should anyone assume that any future occurances on entirely different matters which require good judgment will be handled any better by them? By way of analogy, were Clinton's and Bush's problems solely related to conditons which need addressing (like faulty intelligence or intern policies) or did their judgment not play a major role in the consequences of those conditions? I know I'm rambling but hopefully there is a point here. 70.48.205.221 14:34, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
A lot could have been handled differently - but it is too late for that, and for the ensuing recriminations - By the time the shit hit the fan it was too late for reversal and Essjay had to go. I would have sent him packing a lot more forcefully, perhaps the more subtle way Jimbo employed was an attempt to limit publicity - perhaps it even worked. The important thing is to have a policy and procedure in place for dealing with these things in future should they arise. Perhaps a complete ban on the mention of credentials would be a good start, and let people's work speak for itself. Giano 15:47, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Hm, sounds instruction creepy. Does my username get blocked as inappropriate? And can I mention that I'm a qualified junior tennis coach, or do I get blocked for that? And what about my high school French? --Docg 16:35, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Haha I don't think so Doc :) So far as the "qualified junior tennis coach" thing goes, very borderline as a notable credential I'd say. Only chatting here, anything related to an average HS education I think could be asserted on a user page with no need to verify it (but if a user claimed to have graduated from HS at age 14 or whatever, that would be a notable claim begging for verifiable support IMO). Gwen Gale 16:41, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
"Perhaps a complete ban on the mention of credentials would be a good start, and let people's work speak for itself". It would be a very good start. I don't know if this "Citizendium Lite" proposal that Jimmy floated is still moving, but if it does move then it is going to be a big mistake. People will fraud the system - then we will have a very big mess on our hands (both in terms of the content and in terms of the bad press). SFC9394 22:34, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
I've advocated a ban on listing credentials as it serves no real, allowable purpose on Wikipedia. People use them to win arguments and make themselves seem more elite and as we have seen, they may lie about them. So far, the idea of a ban hasn't gotten far, but if enough other people think it is a good idea, I'd be willing to write up a draft proposal. Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 22:40, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
What if Richard Dawkins wanted to come edit the Atheism article? As long as he could stay neutral, his views would probably be better substantiated than those of someone like me, or most other people. Experts on the subject should be encouraged to add their information, because they will probably be the best contributors on the subject. Pretending that their views are not better than others is ignorant, because most likely, they are. The real issue is knowing how to identify false credentials, because those are what's harming the project. --Hojimachongtalk 22:44, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Unless people are going to post their Graduation certificates complete with graduation photograpgs - I don't see any realistic alternative to a complete ban on the mention of credentials - it is the only foolproof solution if Wikipedia is to continue as the "encyclopedia anyone can edit" Any other system would create a damaging two tiered system of editors creating articles in two categories - "pages to be edited only by the qualified" and "pages not to be trusted" , and sooner or later one of the qualified editors would be found to have bogus credentials. I suspect this is not the solution Jimbos is seeking - but I cannot see another way unless we are prepared for these scandals to be twice or thrice yearly occurance. Giano 22:50, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
I wholly agree with Giano. A ban on posting credentials and a ban on asserting them in edits would be the easiest to implement. I'd also be ok with Wales' proposal of a "vetting lite" or whatever for credentials posted to a userpage, but with assertions of them in edits banned like legal threats. Any true expert (moreover one with notable academic credentials) will tend to have a quick grasp of what published sources are available to cite in asserting almost any edit. Yes, editing an article with no recourse to authority can sometimes take hard work and patience but a reliably sourced article will stand on its own. Gwen Gale 23:10, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

(unindent) This doesn't really work with Wikipedia's "soft security" ideas. A normal user who claims to have credentials isn't going to change the project all that much, and besides, everything they say must be sourced as well. But when hiring people to work for a salary (ala Essjay), then yes, credentials should be checked. --Hojimachongtalk 23:05, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

<unindent> If Richard Dawkins wanted to come and edit the Atheism article then he is more than welcome to do so - the conditions he must abide by are NPOV and Verifiability. Who he is makes not a dime of difference - those two conditions must be met. To set up a quick thought experiment - 2 contributors wish to add the exact same material - 1 is an editor named "woooo_wiki_woooooooooo" and one is named "Richard Dawkins". The former has no credentials and the latter has been approved to be who he claims to be. If the material they wish to add is both NPOV and Verifiable then what does it matter who they are? Credentials - by definition - do not matter, unless people are attempting to circumvent NPOV and/or Verifiability. Of course not everyone who wishes to display credentials will have these motives - but people who wish to are more likely to be - otherwise what is the motivation for doing so? This little bit of explanation doesn't even go near the potential for frauding the system - proving who you really say you are is not the easiest in the real world these days - in the online world it is frankly laughable. I have a degree in history from Harvard - disprove it. (of course the retort is - "ahh but you have to prove it - the burden of proof is with you" - that of course is junk, because the first thing I do is come up with some ropey fraud evidence and say "here's your proof" - to which you either have to believe me or start trying to disprove that I have what I say I have). It is a minefield folks - not only will it create a class structure of editors, but it will jeopardize some of the the core principles of this project (that the content stands on its own two feet - not on the reputation of its creator). SFC9394 23:15, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

I tend to agree with Giano, though how draconian can we realistically make a ban on referring to aspects of one's own life? Also, it won't help much for the immediate future with the PR dilemma that we currently face.
For myself, however, pending resolution of the issue, I've removed all references to my own background from my userpages here and on Meta (though I've found it a bit hard to avoid using my own situation as an example while taking part in this very debate!). Metamagician3000 23:16, 11 March 2007 (UTC)
Well they say all publicity is good publicity and this is the first real sign I have seen of the positive effect of the Essjay affair, Mail readers are just the sort of people we want to reach out to and who likely havent heard of wikipedia before. Neither Currie nor Tatchech are exactly Brits with a good reputation amongst Mail readers, ie they wont be tajken as seriously as perhaps non-Brits might think, SqueakBox 23:22, 11 March 2007 (UTC)


While I can understand the motivation behind "ban mention of all credentials" approach, I don't think it is the solution to wikipedia's real and perceived credibility problems. First of all, are we talking about only academic credentials or all biographical facts that can possibly be viewed as giving a particular editor's view some additional weight ?

  • Given the breadth of topics covered by wikipedia the latter could be almost any biographical information - examples include mentioning that one is a helicopter pilot, army sargeant, plumber, speaks Japanese, won the Nobel prize in physics, or even just the statement that one is >50 year old (and hence, say, remember the day Nixon resigned). Note that this larger ban on mentioning any off-wiki identity/qualifications, would require that even Jimbo Wales edit articles only under a pseudonym.
  • On the other hand, if mentioning of only academic credentials is banned, try explaining to a new editor (or non-wikipedians) why it is ok to say on your userpage that you give killer-manicures, but mentioning that you are an MD-JD-MBA, even if you provide clear evidence for the fact, invites a warning message ! Also, should we tell User:RichardDawkins that he should edit under a pseudonym since his credentials in certain fields are too well-known and thus may be thought to, (gosh!), add weight to what he says. That apparent "anti-intellectualism" is not going to help wikipedia's credibility problems IMO.

To summarize, I think a blanket-ban on the mention of credentials is an approach that creates more problems than it solves. Of course, I remain committed to the ideal that every statement of fact/opinion in an article needs to be backed by an external reliable source, even if the the fact is added by a super-duper qualified editor. Abecedare 23:25, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

I had said earlier that IMO any mention of employment background should be banned too. But I'm ok with CVs on userpages so long as academically (or otherwise) notable stuff is vetted and any assertion of credentials in an edit is banned (like a legal threat). Gwen Gale 12:14, 12 March 2007 (UTC)
For those interested in an outright ban on most credentials, I've drafted a policy at Wikipedia:Credential ban. Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 23:39, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

voluntary degree verification

I assume previous discussion must have been archived, but I read the story in yesterday's The New York Times[5] that mentioned your idea for voluntary degree verification, and I think it's an excellent idea. I'm an attorney in Minnesota and it worries me (a lot) that there are people pretending to be professional experts on a whole host of subjects (law, medicine, engineering, etc) where a professional or graduate degree can make a difference. Early on in my time here I found myself having to post a direct link to my own name on Minnesota's online licensed attorney listing to gain even a modicum of credibility versus more experienced (but legally incorrect) users that wanted to simply marginalize an opposing opinion as "fake". I just wanted to say that there are a number of us that will support this idea, and thank you for having the strength to put it forward (once again). --Bobak 01:49, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for getting back to me. I'd love to help, I just want to clarify your suggestion: (1) this process is to try and create a repeatable template, starting with myself, or a general template? (2) I understand the idea of creating a userbox that links to a new userpage/subpage, but where would you want me to place the userbox: on my main userpage or somewhere else? I admit I have no experience with creating templates, but I'm willing to try --and then, if it gains traction, I'm sure someone will revise the template to make it more presentable (as always seems to happen). Before I make my first attempt I was hoping to just clarify those two questions. --Bobak 21:49, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Massive proposal failure

Jimbo, I don't know if you've been follwing this whole thing very much (I sure hope you have been though) but so far, just about all proposals relating to credentials seem to be failing, with the sole exception of the proposal to require ID for users with CheckUser access. The general consensus seems to be that we don't need a radical new policy, we don't need to appease the media, and existing content policy should be adequate. See User_talk:Jimbo_Wales/Credential_Verification#Perhaps_the_best_proposal... for a current discussion about this. What we are asking is: Please don't override consensus just to appease the media. Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 02:34, 14 March 2007 (UTC)

Jimbo, I think there are reasons why this has happened. Strong articles are built only through rigorous citation back to reliable and verifiable sources. Although I think your initial proposal about lightly vetting CVs on userpages was helpful, I've come to believe that banning the assertion of CVs altogether on userpages, along with making the assertion of a CV in an edit blockable, like a legal threat, is the only way to mix anonymity with article reliability. Cheers! Gwen Gale 16:54, 14 March 2007 (UTC)
I don't see how what I am proposing could possibly fail. It would require a policy change to allow people to be blocked for doing voluntary credential verification. The only things that are failing are ideas which I am not proposing. I was on a family trip for the last 2 days, so I haven't kept up with the discussions since then. --Jimbo Wales 15:07, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
I think some policy changes would be helpful. Don't you? Or have I misunderstood? Are you saying no policy changes are needed? Cheers! Gwen Gale 15:11, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Respectfully, Jimmy, you are mistaken. People have a number of problems with your proposal (yes, yours), including that it's completely unworkable/unscalable, will not address any real problems, and will have the negative effect of creating another class of editors. Mak (talk) 15:13, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
Your original proposal for the voluntary verification of credentials has inspired many alternative proposals, and virtually all of these proposals have been rejected by an overwhelming majority of those participating in the discussion as being inconsistent with the egalitarian philosophy that is at the core of Wikipedia's value system. As such, the only way that any system of credential verification could be up and running at Wikipedia in a week, a month, or at any time in the foreseeable future would be if Wikipedia were to rename itself Citizendium. As an alternative, I humbly offer the proposed policy of Ignore All Credentials in the tradition of one of Wikipedia's core policies Ignore all rules. // Internet Esquire 17:21, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
In general agreement with the above, I do think a ban on credential posting and on asserting them in edits would be more than helpful. Gwen Gale 17:25, 15 March 2007 (UTC)
As far as a ban goes, see Wikipedia:Credential ban. However, the only idea that is getting support in decent quantites is a proposal on meta to require users with CheckUser access to have their ID on file with the Foundation. Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 22:45, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

It looks like I inadvertently made my last edit to an earlier version from the history. Apologies for that. What it said was the following: I'm still not in love with the proposal for reasons I've articulated in the past, but I've sent you [i.e. Jimbo] an e-mail (since there is confidential information involved about my real-life identity) asking you to carry out an exercise that might confirm the workability of what you are proposing and give you an idea of how flexible it would need to be. I'll be interested in your response. I think that some (not all) of the criticisms of the proposal are unfair and not seeing the bigger picture. Metamagician3000 00:29, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Wales should offer to resign

The Essjay embarassment to Wikipedia was 90% a result of administrative non-reaction (poor judgment) by Jimbo,Angela and Brad Patrick [6] and 10% a result of Essjay's misdeed. Policies can never prevent willful bad behavior nor administrative inaction when made aware of bad behavior. It's quite disturbing that even the Bush Whitehouse is taken to account more for its acceptance of wrongful behavior. The appointing of Essjay to ArbCom ( AFTER Essjay advised Jimbo of his misdeed) shows not only poor judgment but an overt acceptance of Essjay's misdeed; and to do so without even instructing Essjay to correct or delete his fabrications from Wikipedia exacerbates that acceptance. That is the obvious crux of the issue before the Wikipedia community, and debating credentialism proposals does nothing to address that. I'll be straightforward; I propose that Wales offer his resignation forthwith and that Brad Patrick be replaced as General Counsel unless he can show he took some action when Essjay advised him of the misdeed. 70.48.205.216 22:40, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Proposal rejected. Irrelevant. --Rednblu 20:11, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

I need some help..

Hello, I am a high school student with an assingnment to right a analytical research paper, but the thing is I can't use Wikipedia.. and I think Wikipedia's information is the most organized and correct I can find. My teacher says that your site is not a credible or reliable source. I would like to write my paper on how Wikipedia works, like if there is a screening process or what happens when someone puts false information on the site but I don't know where I can find the information I'm looking for without using Wikipedia itself. This isn't that big of a deal I can always find another topic, but if you have anything I can use to prove that your website is credible then I'm all ears. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Sanke09 (talkcontribs) 15:14, 16 March 2007 (UTC).

Hey Jimbo, I answered this question myself as best I could, as I sensed he might have needed an answer quickly, but I'm sure you can provide a better answer for him when you next pop in.

And hi! Haven't left a message with you before. Nice to meet the maker! SGGH 15:46, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

---

<< I would like to write my paper on how Wikipedia works, . . . . >> (citation)

In my opinion, writing a paper on how Wikipedia works is a bad idea for you. I think it is a bad idea because there are not today enough reliable sources who have published analyses of how Wikipedia works. Could we have a short discussion about picking a good topic for your paper, perhaps on your TalkPage? --Rednblu 18:39, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

If you know how to use google you can find stuff. For example using http://www.google.com/search?num=100&hl=en&newwindow=1&safe=off&q=-blog+Sanger+Britannica++wikipedia+wales+wikimedia+GFDL++foundation+law+freedom&btnG=Search I found http://72.14.253.104/search?q=cache:btMdgief8QkJ:www.sciencepub.net/0402/14-0142-mahongbao.doc+-blog+Sanger+Britannica+wikipedia+wales+wikimedia+GFDL+foundation+law+freedom&hl=en&ct=clnk&cd=9&gl=us which is not only an interesting read but also contains sources that can be used for further investigation; and I know there are some Harvard studies. WAS 4.250 20:31, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia can be used as a very good source. Even if you think the article might be a bit sketchy you can always look at the bottom of the article for footnotes. Very often the article will cite footnotes from very credible sources including books, magazines, and additional news media that you can use for your paper. Wikipedia used in this way should be a great help to any paper. Now, if you see, "George Bush is a ****," I probably wouldn't quote that particular section of the Wikipedia article.  :-) Have a great day! 63.3.15.129 23:10, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
That is exactly how Wikipedia should be used, as a resource for finding sources that CAN be cited in your paper. Many of us work very hard to make sure that there are good footnotes, and request that sources be found for the sketchier claims, or get them out of the article. The main reason that Wikipedia is not considered "reliable" is because you can never guarantee what is going to be in an article at any random moment, since anyone can edit it. But for finding good sources on any topic, it really can't be beat. - Crockspot 23:30, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
The newspapers are having fun with our unreliability, but I think the average wikipedia article is more reliable than the average newpaper article. WAS 4.250 08:36, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

AFD on Rajkumar Kanagasingam

Dear Mr. Jimbo Wales,

An AFD on my Bio Rajkumar Kanagasingam is brought only to distract the offences at wikipedia after stealing my e-mail address and thereafter my wiki passwords by Netmonger and his/her group and nothing else. How this user can bring this AFD before he clears himself from the offences which is now under investigation under an Administrator’s supervision and the details are here.Rajkumar Kanagasingam 04:51, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Now I found there was a detetion tag over the Princess Diana Institute of Peace which I founded. My own bio was nominated for AFD just two and half months ago, after heavy dispute over some issues on Anton Balasingham. The AFD was placed once again. Now I feel, I can't have my Bio(which was originally created by Wackymacs) like thisand same time be a Wikipedian also. My wishes for you ever. Thanks Rajkumar Kanagasingam 11:50, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/IncidentArchive145

Hey, I noticed you recently redeleted this archive, saying not to restore it unless asked. My guess is it was deleted due to trouble with HOTR (I am unfamiliar with that stuation other then basic information), so would it then be okay to restore the archive, minus section 92?--Wizardman 02:49, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Yes! I am trying to be as courteous as possible with someone who I would like to walk away with dignity... with the emphasis here on "walk away". Let's be kind to him so he can be shut of us. :) --Jimbo Wales 09:46, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Jimbo, would you mind if I (or another sysop) restored only the first nine edits (the ones not pertaining to HOTR)? Or would you just prefer it remain entirely deleted Glen 10:01, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
Any variant which leaves him out of it would be most appreciated. I do not know if this will be successful, but I am hopeful that by doing him this courtesy, we will be done with this sad episode.--Jimbo Wales 10:38, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Second Life

I've just written to Linden Lab in the following terms (slightly edited):

"Over at Wikipedia, I have been one of the people trying to bring the article on Second Life and also the article called "Resident (Second Life)" to the highest possible standard. As part of that, I created some images in SL - a couple of avatars that I created plus a shot of the Linden Gallery.
I'm being told that those images will probably be deleted as I do not have copyright in them and thus cannot give it to Wikipedia under the GFDL or to the public domain. The rationale for this is that all intellectual property in Second Life stays with the creators of elements in the virtual world, and I am not the creator of all elements of the snapshots that I took. This seems odd to me - it seems like saying that I do not have the copyright in a photo I take in my street because other people own the houses and cars that appear in my photograph. Still, that is what I am being told: if other people have created stuff that appears in my snapshot (even a skin that I bought for my avatar) then I don't have copyright in my snapshot, or, rather, everyone else who has been involved in creating content that appears in my snapshot shares in the copyright.
This also seems to have the inconvenient result that it is almost impossible for us to (legally) put snapshots taken in Second Life on our own blogs, websites, etc. Surely that can't be the intention of Linden Lab?
I've been wondering whether Linden Lab can help me in making these Wikipedia articles as good as possible. One way might be if you contacted the Wikipedia office (not me ... I'm just one of however many million editors and would have no easy way of proving it came from you) with some kind of definitive advice about the copyright status of snapshots taken in Second Life - that's assuming that the interpretation being adopted by Wikipedia is not correct.
If we can't get around this, might it be possible for Linden Lab to upload some in-world snapshots in which it unequivocally has copyright onto Wikipedia? It does seem to be in everyone's interest to have the best and most attractive Wikipedia articles. I'm hopeful of getting the actual Second Life article to Featured Article status, in which case there is a good chance of getting it featured on Wikipedia's main page, but this is a real glitch.
Please let me know what you think."

Perhaps nothing will come of my inquiry, which will be one of many received by Linden Lab on all sorts of topics, but I can imagine more situations in future where there will be copyright issues about user-created content involving snapshots taken in-world within Second Life or other such virtual realities, so I thought I'd at least draw the issue to your attention. I'm baffled by the intellectual property regime of Second Life, but I'm often baffled these days. Metamagician3000 02:21, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Just to clearify, IANAL but for your own personal use you don't need to worry too much about copyright stuff. Problem is Wikipedia is not your average blog or website. We are a free content project, and in order to release something under a free license you must first have the copyright to it. For most games this is pretty straight forward, the game developer have the copyright (and have in some rare cases agreed to allow screenshots to be used under a free license). In Second Life however there is the additional complication that most of the content in the world is created by the users themselves and not the developers. So unless there is some sneaky copyright transfer agreement you have to agree to you probably need to get in touch with the people who created the objects (isn't that what they call it?) you snapped a picture off as well... Then you can start questioning who created all the textures they used, but at this point I tend to develop a bad headace, and I believe the consept of De minimis comes into play at some point, though again IANAL. Let's just say copyright gets complicated when multiple anonymous people create something colaboratibely, wich is part of the reaosn why Wikipedia needs to be so hardcode on insisting that the license status of contributed material is clear and verifiable in the first place... --Sherool (talk) 22:38, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia's Main Page alternative for DYK

http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Main_Page_alternative_(Next_DYK)&action=purge
Follow the above link. Besides the discussion tab of this page you will find article. I would wish to move it under the main page as a sub page because it is not an article. One more thing, who is essjay. Sushant gupta 09:04, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Hello

I know this isn't much...but I just wanted to say thank you for creating Wikipedia. Being an editor actually helped me out of my depression, and I have gotten a decent number of people hooked on it as well. I know you probably get thanked a lot...but I just wanted you to know how much I appriciate Wikipedia. It is one of the most valuable resources out there. *hugs* Have a wonderful day!
Saber girl08 11:28, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Policy clarification

Thank you for clarifying policy. People have been misapplying it for a long time, to the detriment of the project. Oversimplying wasn't helping.

In fact, that's one of the biggest problems in the intellectual arena: the attempt to boil things down to their essence (prematurely). Somethings are just plain complicated.

In particular, I hope this clarification will help our articles on scientific topics which touch on controversies over public policy. I would like to see Wikipedia provide neutral treatments of all points which have a significant degree of minority disagreement. I'm not sure how large a "minority" has to be to merit inclusion, though. Is a single peer-reviewed scientific paper enough? In some cases, perhaps not, but even if the minority is large enough to be included we must make sure not to make it appear larger than it is, any more than we should make the majority appear larger than it is. Guidelines for how to do this will help. --Uncle Ed 16:01, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Well done

Sorting out WP:RS etc. Putting everything into Attribution made the talk pages unworkable besides anything else. BTW it kind of isn't obvious that nofollow is working at all, going loads of little comments about the place (e.g. Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Spam/2007_Archive_Mar#No_follow.3F_No_problem) so some better way would be good sometime. I started User:BozMo/whitelist but ran out of energy. --BozMo talk 15:58, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Not to be pedantic, but Wikipedia:Reliable sources was never a policy, it was always a guideline. Both it and the talk page have been fully protected so there is no way for a casual editor to replace {{policy}} with the previous header {{guideline | [[WP:RS]]}}. SchmuckyTheCat 16:51, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Fixed, sorry about that. I am not intending to change policy, just to prevent people from pre-emptively declaring a major editorial shift without consensus.--Jimbo Wales 17:48, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

On WP:V and WP:A you made two distinct edits [7] and [8]. It is not clear to me that there has ever been a consensus on WP:A, as shown in its archive talk pages and those of WP:V, so I prefer your first edit to your second. Indeed the tone of "canonical" WP:A seems to be moving towards "don't make any statement unless you attribute it" when the original sense of WP:V was "only include statements which are accurate and are capable of being fact-checked". It is the latter which seems to be the general practice of most editors and was the consensus when WP:V was first labeled as policy.[9] --Henrygb 01:57, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Banning and Blocking

Hi Jimbo Wales. There is nothing big going on, but I would like to know the difference between and ban and a block. Thanks, PikminloverMeep! € 23:02, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

A Ban is a removal of editing privileges from all or part of Wikipedia. There is no technical action to ban, it is just saying "You are not allowed to edit anymore". Sitewide bans can be enforced with a block, which prevents editing. Prodego talk 01:24, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Also confused

Greetings. For the past few weeks, I have suddenly been in some kind of strange personal dispute with User:Guettarda. I think it stems from his misunderstanding, but it could be also that because of my inexperience here, I misworded something that he rightly sees as a personal attack. Unfortunately for me, he has or had many allies, and I'm having trouble getting objective feedback. For instance, I asked User:SlimVirgin for some advice, but either because she is very busy or because she doesn't view my request in good faith, hasn't responded. Another admin I know has had their own disputes with Guettarda and so I doubt that admin could help. The only other editors I know are otherwise very busy in their own mediation disputes. Can you please point me in the direction of an admin who is completely neutral and has no significant ties with User:FeloniousMonk or with User:Guettarda? --Otheus 23:03, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Ugh, I just found out that a big source of the ill-will there is due to the fact that at least FeloniousMonk (and probably the others) think I'm a sockpuppet of several banned users. Viewed in that light, yes, my actions seem, less than honest. [10]. It's probably best if I wait for the checkuser to clear my identity (as much as it can) and then proceed to mediation or some such. But if you still have someone in mind.... --Otheus 00:18, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
I have found an admin who is willing to help me. Thank you. --Otheus 00:57, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Greetings!

Trampton 00:36, 21 March 2007 (UTC).

Re post

Please see Wikipedia's no personal attacks policy. Comment on content, not on contributors; personal attacks damage the community and deter users. Note that continued personal attacks may lead to blocks for disruption. Please stay cool and keep this in mind while editing. Thank you. re [11]. This post was rather unbecoming, and quite disappointing. Seems a vio of AGF as well. Feel free to block me if you wish, but Wikipedia should not be held hostage to the whims of its primary personage. •Jim62sch• 19:46, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

I am sorry but I seem to have badly misunderstood something. Guetterda is saying that I am claiming something that I am not. I don't know where the confusion is, exactly, or I would try to correct it.--Jimbo Wales 20:00, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

The confusion is that you seem to have removed a well sourced section, and people don't understand what parts you specifically you objected to and why. I think I understand the part you actually objected to, and have a proposal here: Talk:Christopher_Michael_Langan#Proposal that should hopefully satisfy it. If that's not it, then I'm confused too. --AnonEMouse (squeak) 20:36, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Jimbo, I think the issue here is a disconnect in communication: it's quite possible that we're all talking past each other. Nonetheless, the fact that a number of experienced editors have noticed at least the perception of a seemingly out-of-process change to an article, should be cause for concern: who knows what newbies or the folks gunning for Wikipedia might think (I can guess, but I won't). I've read AnonEMouse's proposed change and it seems reasonable to me. The lawsuit is as much of value as is anything else Langan has been involved in, and removing it just seems like either giving in to the objections of FNMF (who may be associated with Langan in some way -- linguistic forensics seems to lead in that direction, as does the likely meaning of the acronym FNMF), or else a form of censorship (albeit likely unintended) that can only serve to hamper our efforts to write articles about living persons.
As for Guettarda, I cannot speak for him, but I understand the frustration. On the positive side, I'm pretty sure we can all get past this as we all care deeply about Wikipedia and want it to succeed. Cheers. •Jim62sch• 20:57, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

As I see no reference to any of that stuff which is not heavily original research, I think that all of it should be omitted. Wikipedia is not the right place for people to be doing original historical research. Has there been a book about this? A magazine article? A newspaper article? Or are we simply picking up on some web fight and lawsuit of very dubious importance and trying to do original historical analysis on what it was all about and how important it is?--Jimbo Wales 04:01, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Well, that's the confusion you're asking about, that you seem to be saying that any use of primary sources, even without synthesis, is original research. The section (at least my proposed condensation) is just stating what the decision of the court is, no synthesis, no position advanced. Its importance may not be much on a global scale, but it is important in relation to Langan; he's only notable due to his prominence in high IQ societies, that's what the first article on him was about, and it is a big deal in that small world. [12] [13] [14] --AnonEMouse (squeak) 13:26, 21 March 2007 (UTC)
True enough. As I alluded to earlier, the court case is as notable as is Langan. If the court case has no value, well, you can draw the conclusion.
See the following from WP:NOR "...However, research that consists of collecting and organizing information from existing primary and/or secondary sources is, of course, strongly encouraged." I don't think any of the editors violated this policy, but I do think the removal of the case from the article was. Sorry, Jimbo, but Wiki should be a level playing field, and the rules should apply to all. Otherwise, we might as well be Conservapedia. •Jim62sch• 22:54, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy

Peace for you, I come in peace, can you please delete Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy article and block it, please. All for good and peace of the world, the world will be thankful of you.--Towaru 08:40, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Transmigration

Transmigration program they didn't like someone mentioning that six million settlers had been relocated under the government scheme, so the remove that detail and say its 2.5 million, not that they bothered to access any reference to support their claim; they just felt 2.5 looked better than 6. I provide a reliable study and update the figure to the study's 6.27 million; the group again remove the figure.

I add references showing the claim that the Indonesian Transmigration program ended in 2001 was not correct, so they remove that or wish to ignore it. I provide multiple studies talking about transmigration in social terms, these sources also get removed.

Every minority subject is squashed by Wikipedia's most editors principle; the general community refuse to edit a subject they do not know about - refuse to read the sources - allow the references and citations to be removed. Just because Indonesia can afford to have a half dozen editors keeping Wikipedia in line; Wikipedia is not Open Source, that would allow input.

Have you seen Special:Contributions/Hu12? multiple edits per minute, looks more like a BOT, do you think he/it cared that it was deleting references? Has Merbabu found another tool to to keep information about Indonesia hidden? 58.107.15.245 12:28, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Is Wikipedia reliable?

In light of recent dicussions on this page, you might be interested in the thread forming here [15] Giano 13:26, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

I have an idea to utilize the Wikipedia framework in a new way. If it would be possible to setup a more private form of correspondence, I'd be more than happy to share it with you. --D 18:00, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia is self-correcting and is only as reliable as concerned humans collaborating on a project can be. An ultimate authoritative comprehensive source of information, The Truth, is unattainable. paradoxos 15:48, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

User:Cavic & image attribution and/or watermarks

Hello. I was involved with Cavic (talk · contribs) on the Dennis Johnson (edit|talk|history|protect|delete|links|watch|logs|views) article and his commons:Image:Dennis_Johnson_Lipofsky.jpg. The problem is he seemingly wants the watermark on the image which is a violation of our Image use policy, specifically where it states "Also, user-created images may not be watermarked, distorted, have any credits in the image itself or anything else that would hamper their free use, unless, of course, the image is intended to demonstrate watermarking, distortion etc. and is used in the related article. All photo credit should be in a summary on the image description page." Further, he seemingly wants image attribution to him and his website in a caption underneath the image on the article, which it seems there isn't a policy or guideline covering this. WP:CAPTION isn't a policy or guideline and doesn't cover this topic either. Through talking with several others, it seems at most, stating something of "Image by <Name>" would be the consensus, but not then linking to an external website (as was part of the issue in the revert/edit war on the article). However, I do not believe image attribution of any kind should be allowed in a caption or on the article, as attribution is clearly acceptable on the image description page. We don't attribute article authors on the article page, and we seem to be doing just fine with that, so why are images so special? Further, it seems to me that many are trying to bend over backwards and perhaps ignore a policy to allow the watermark on the image in defiance of the policy. Some are claiming that removing the watermark and/or copyright terms from the image aren't acceptable under the GFDL license. There was minimal discussion on the issue of caption attribution at the pump/policy, but no resolution or consensus. My preference for resolution is to remove the watermark from the image and the caption from the article page. If Cavic finds this use unacceptable, I would permit the deletion of the image, despite the fact he had licensed the image under the GFDL and revoking isn't really possible. The image on commons and the article are currently fully protected to stop the revert/edit wars until this matter can be solved. (I apologize for the lengthy background section, especially if you knew all this).

This leads me to why I am writing to you: I was told on IRC in the #wikimedia-commons channel several weeks ago that this was being handled at the "foundation level." The problem is there is little transparency as to if this is still being worked, if the matter has been resolved, or even if it really is being handled at all (I don't doubt that it was, since "dannyisme" was in the channel and I believe that is a foundation person). If you could at least let me know if this is still an ongoing issue with the foundation, that would be great. Also, if you could perhaps say when a resolution is expected (even vaguely, like "months" would be better than no information), and perhaps leave a note on the article talk page about the issue, that would be much appreciated. If the matter is resolved, then producing the results (a statement by you) and un-protecting the image/article would be needed. Thank you for your time. --MECUtalk 17:02, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

I am unaware of any discussion of this at the foundation level. If the image is a violation of image policy, it should be deleted. Simple as that. I see no reason for the foundation to be involved in any way.--Jimbo Wales 11:13, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Office Actions

I assume you are the only one authorized to use Wikipedia:Office Actions now, since Danny resigned. As such, I removed him from that pagerevert. You may want to appoint someone else there, unless Danny still retains the Office. Perhaps Brad? Prodego talk 20:28, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Danny resigned? Why? Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 00:07, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I do not know why, I just know that he is now listed as "Former staff" and he has removed his rights from his meta and enwiki accounts (not the others though). Prodego talk 02:24, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, at the moment, WP:OFFICE is unfilled. We should all be as loving and reasonable as we can towards anyone from the office who posts there asking for our help, of course. I am talking with Anthere about how to move forward in this area.--Jimbo Wales 11:12, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Answers.com

Does Mr. Wales have any comments on potential profitability gained through the copying of wikipedia articles on www.answers.com ? So far, there has been no comment on a possibility of whether or not wikipedia.com gains a portion of the ad revenue generated through answers.com which essentially contains wikipedia articles but receive ad revenue for its traffic. Obviously I have no proof of this, but it is theoretically possible that Mr. Wales does not wish to directly make wikipedia profitable but could theoretically receive revenues through a secondary website as not to damage wikipedia's image of non-profit. So far, this has not really been talked about, so I was wondering if Mr. Wales has any comment on this issue, and even rather or not, this is even a relevant issue at all. Active contributor 01:34, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2005-10-24/Answers.com partnership, and Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2006-04-17/Answers tool ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 01:52, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes, Wikipedia has an image (and reality) of being nonprofit, and in keeping with this, it uses wikipedia.org as its address, not wikipedia.com as you mistakenly note. *Dan T.* 04:57, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Answers.com is a completely independent reuser of Wikipedia content, and one of the best. They have been a good friend to the Wikimedia Foundation over the years, having sponsored Wikimania two years in a row. Such use is perfectly fine under the GNU FDL. Neither I, nor any other board members, receives any form of compensation from Answers.com. --Jimbo Wales 11:17, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Is this link Wikipedia related

http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd Hello sir,
Is this link Wikipedia related. Thanks Sushant gupta 08:25, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

No, that is data about the xhtml format from the World Wide Web Consortium, who set the standards. KillerChihuahua?!? 16:03, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

fair use images on talk pages

George Lucas shooting the original Star Wars film in 1976...What do you think George??? I didnt see the fair use thing before,...but go ahead and remove it again after I just rechecked to see it after scrolling down, I will fully comply with the legal policy until it changes. However, I now have a mind to start removing all Kenner images on wikipedia...screw them then if we cant use an advertising image from them, then its time to start removing all publicity and images of their products from wikipedia, someone might actually take an interest in their product or buy it if they see it. If there is this lock tight image policy, then its time to just remove these images of peoples' movies and products so wikipedia users dont come into contact with them, these movie or product images can all be considered advertising, unpaid advertising. I think its time for the unpaid advertising to stop. Unless the fair use image policy changes to allow some more leeway I see no reason to give companies and manufacturers free advertising of their images and products on wikipedia. Someone might see the image of Jabba I pasted up and rent "Return of the Jedi" this weekend for instance. I didn't use the image of Jabba to advertise for Kenner or for the Star Wars movies, but I really think they should actually pay me for including the image of Jabba on wikipedia at all! Wikipedia is currently in a position as an unpaid advertiser in many cases, although the intent isn't usually to advertise, many times that is a secondary side-effect, and I think those with financial interests behind some of these images should lighten up a little and show some appreciation for the free distribution of their images. Thats the least they can do besides actually paying wikipedia for the distribution of those images on a heavily used internet site. (I'm not implying in any way Lucas or Kenner is behind the removal of my Jabba image or that they are the ones that lobby for a tight image use policy, it was merely a wikipedia editor steadfastly following the legal policy, and of course he should follow that policy unless it changes somewhat, and mere coincidence that it is after I used a star wars image that I have brought up this issue) Wikipedia can survive with digital photos taken from users until the image policy loosens up a little, until then thousands of movies and products will suffer a little as people won't see them so much. Its time to lobby for the allowance of fair use images on talk pages if people wish to use them from time to time. An editor that begins a marketting campaign across wikipedia for a specific product or movie though should be chastised. But to use a variety of images from varying sources on talk pages to demonstrate ones point or add some color now and again I think is reasonable. Talk pages can get really dreary. Its nice sometimes to see an image or two to liven them up for those that use the talk pages. I'm not exactly trying to defend my specific metaphorical use of the jabba image, but I am defending the right of an editor to use a fair use image to demonstrate a point they have made on a talk page, and that image may not be directly associated with the article, in fact its rare one would even want to use an image related exactly directly to the article on its talk page, it may only relate to something in ones edit on the talk page and just be indirectly associated to the actual article. CrystalizedAngels 11:17, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

We are here to create a free content ensyclopedia, so unfree images are only allowed when they add important information to an article that would be impossible to provide otherwise. They may not be used outside of articles, and scertainly not just to "add some color" (not even in articles). This has nothing to do with the copyright holders wishes or maketing, or anything like that, but rater a internal policy of this project seeing as a fundamental goal is to create and distribute content that anyone can use, modify or even sell freely. Unfree (aka fair use) images are not free in this way and so only allowed as a "last resort" where it is not possible to find or create free licensed alternatives. --Sherool (talk) 12:34, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

I didnt say "add color". I said "liven up". Meaning to "add interest" to an otherwise monotonous page. I think the addition of an image or two to an otherwise very very long talk page can be worthwhile on occasion. It can even help me find my place on a ridiculously long talk page, of where I was editing at. But, make no mistake, its something I rarely do, in hundreds of talk page additions I have added perhaps 2 or 3 images, but its something I think can be OK on occasion. Anyways I understand the reasoning behind the fair use image thing, I'm just saying I think that it should in actuality be the other way around with a bunch of these images used on wikipedia, instead of all this worry about using someones' image or movie/product picture, they should be begging wikipedia to use more of their images. Thats all I'm saying.CrystalizedAngels 14:24, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

I sympathize with your well meaning mistake. It used to be that average people didn't need to know very much about copyright law: if you didn't copy the encyclopedia and turn it in as your term paper you were probably safe, but trimming a cartoon from a newspaper and taping it to your wall was fine. The same urge to liven things up in a friendly way becomes a different matter on one of the world's largest Internet sites. Fair use is a longstanding principle of copyright. I hope the editors you dealt with were courteous about explaining this. It can be confusing and sometimes frustrating. I'm sure no personal insult was intended. DurovaCharge! 23:03, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Original research/attribution

Please see my comment here. I don't know whether you'll agree with it or whether you'll think I go too far, but either way it deals with an important issue that you obviously have a keen interest in. I see no one else making quite this point. Metamagician3000 23:54, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Linking of dates, and how it interacts with user preference formatting

Hi, a humble question from me which seems to vex "Featured Articles" editors, as they call themselves. Is it Wikipedia policy or not to link day-month-year (esp. birthdates and date of decease) combinations in order that users can view the date format in their chosen style when viewing the article?

I have a quote from Tony1 in response to a fellow editor (Mattisse), who is part of the Featured Article editing fraternity. Quote:

"Given the unfortunate technical situation, in which dates can't be autoformatted without linking them, I'm now refusing to link any dates. I suggest that you do the same until the situation is resolved. Tony 22:45, 22 March 2007 (UTC)"

I must admit to being at a loss to understand the editors' dogged reluctance to link day-month-year combinations. Further, there is widespread de-linking of dates in articles being carried out in campaign style, it seems.

For me, this all came about when an article I contribute to, Hoagy Carmichael, was modified in this way (example diff). Having thoroughly studied the MoS, I could find no reason for this "user preference format destruction", for want of better words. I can only think that there has been a large-scale difference of opinion amongst the Featured Article editors regarding linking in articles. I have obtained a valued opinion from an admin of my acquaintance, which leans towards this type of linking being in line with MoS, and therefore allowable.

Your opinion would be appreciated, if it is within your remit. Thanks. Refsworldlee(chew-fat)(eds) 00:30, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

A lesson learnt

I think the major lessons that have come out of this for the Foundation are:

  1. Don't vouch for someone's credentials to the media when you have no idea who they are.
  2. Don't announce to the media that we'll be implementing a credential verification policy without telling the community.
  3. Don't be surprised when they reject proposals that would effectively divide the community into "editors" and "authors".

Why would anyone have their credentials verified unless they were going to use them to railroad other editors? Just last night someone tried to revert my edits to English Reformation because he is a parish priest and I have no identifying information on my userpage. This encyclopedia, as I am sure you are well aware, is largely written by students and amateur enthusiasts. If they feel made to be inferior, they will leave, and Wikipedia will collapse. All of these policies that have been proposed has an unwritten implication that having your credentials verified will allow you to assert your "authority". If someone is really reading an encyclopedia because it was written by graduates, they can go to Citizendium. We insist on references. I cite almost everything I write and where I don't, I provide sources whenever challenged. Whatever qualifications I may or may not have thus does not matter and should not matter. Any step towards a Citizendium style hierarchy will end in disaster. I hope the community's resounding rejection to these proposals will swiftly bring an end to any further steps. Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 22:18, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

I don't think there is any resounding rejection! I think a few people are completely hysterical about proposals which have not been made. I think voluntary credential verification is going ahead promptly. As with many things in Wikipedia, if you don't want to do it, don't do it. But don't get in the way of good people trying to do something useful, either.--Jimbo Wales 02:48, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Jimmy, have you been able to review the responses to your proposal on its talk page (+ the archives)? I don't think you can classify the number of people expressing sincere and severe concerns with the proposal can be described as "a few people [who] are completely hysterical." It's a pretty wide subset of editors and administrators. That isn't to say you can't go ahead with your proposal, of course, but I'd certainly appreciate you not dismissing them and their reasoning completely out of hand as "hysterical". Yes, the proposal is voluntary. That doesn't mean it won't affect more than those who choose to participate — it will affect everyone, as has been discussed extensively. —bbatsell ¿? 02:56, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
There are a handful of reasonable concerns but I see no developing consensus against the proposal. I see a lot of hysteria, and a lot of support. I think it will go forward successfully in any event, and at that point those who are opposed will begin to see more clearly why this is a simple and overwhelmingly positive thing.--Jimbo Wales 04:11, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Wow. Thanks for classifying the many comments by long term editors, including myself as "hysteria." You are seriously out of touch with the community here. Absolutely no consensus to go forward with it was made. Of course you still may do it by fiat, but you are sadly mistaken in thinking the community supports this. pschemp | talk 07:42, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
How about if he just quoted pschemp's own classification of the many comments of long term editors last week, and called it a "hysterical bloodlusting lynch mob"? 150.203.2.85 08:39, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Since that was not made in reference to this proposal, but instead to the actual lynchmob running around, that wouldn't be a correct thing to quote. Glad to see I have a fan club though. pschemp | talk 08:45, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
As I said in the main discussion: I see no problem with those who want to give links to verify their credentials on their userpages, but a policy to say that they can is unnecessary. As long as we generally take credentials with a grain of salt, we don't allow them to be used in place of citations (we already don't), and the use of them in debate is discouraged or possibly banned (which may require a minor change to talk page policy) I see no reason for drastic change. Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 03:05, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

I think the reason Mr. Wales is referring to "hysteria" is that the majority of the opposition is in opposition to something that isn't actually being proposed. Namely, nobody is proposing that "I have a Ph.D. nyah nyah" will replace citing of reliable sources and rational debate; obviously it can't as a fair number of editors in fact do have Ph.Ds (at least, I think so, given they are telling the truth!). Nonetheless, when I read through all the comments, many people seem to think this is what is being proposed. Thus, I think Mr. Wales' interpretation is on the mark. In my honest opinion, the confusion is due to the fact that the proposal is really quite mild...in fact, some may even consider it ineffectual to address the "real issues" (whose existence is not yet firmly established).

As far as I understand it, the proposal is meant to address certain, perhaps very uncommon (but still occurring) situations when there is an extensive debate requiring some level of expertise in judging which sources are more reliable, standard, etc., or when some person, group, or organization is notable. Additionally, when there is already rational debate going on, people are generally willing to give someone the benefit of the doubt when s/he says in his/her extensive professional experience such-and-such is true. Mr. Wales seems to be proposing that in those cases, we should verify that that person does in fact have such experience, when it is possible to do so. This is why as I said, some may consider this ineffectual. Generally, people take such comments with a grain of salt, and based on the editor's history, determine whether this person does in fact appear to be such an expert. Such determinations are made daily. The majority of times, probably, such determinations are easy to make correctly. So it seems likely to me that very little will change if this proposal is implemented.

On the other hand, it seems to me that there is a definite PR advantage. The person who only knows about Wikipedia from the newspapers will learn of this policy and feel it is more reliable as a result. In the end of course, we really have no good idea as to the reliability of Wikipedia before or after such a policy, nor really how it compares to other resources (I am aware of the couple studies comparing to Wikipedia to say, Britannica, but I'm skeptical of the methodologies not to mention the validity of comparing apples and oranges). --C S (Talk) 05:30, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

---

"Hysterical" sounds about right to me. And User:C S above provides about the right explanation in saying that "the majority of the opposition is in opposition to something that isn't actually being proposed." If I look again at the proposal, I find: "This policy will be coupled with a policy of gentle (or firm) discouragement for people to make claims like those that EssJay made, unless they are willing to back them up." There you have it. As User:C S says, I see no proposal that the editor's credentials would be given any weight at all in deciding whether the editor can insert credential bias to override neutral point of view. So there is no good reason for the "hysteria" or "sincere and severe concerns" or whatever we want to call the opposition to this proposal. This proposal looks like an effective step forward in dealing with our situation here. Nevertheless, we as a community have a lot of work to do in defining in clear and consistent policy text what NPOV means operationally in "representing fairly and without bias all significant views that have been published by a reliable source." But as User:C S says, that work cannot be addressed in the very limited scope of this proposal. --Rednblu 08:47, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

So, would someone like to clarify to me why people would verify their credentials? Because someone in apparent opposition to me said "Additionally, when there is already rational debate going on, people are generally willing to give someone the benefit of the doubt when s/he says in his/her extensive professional experience such-and-such is true. Mr. Wales seems to be proposing that in those cases, we should verify that that person does in fact have such experience, when it is possible to do so" which seems strangely like saying because people are already asserting their offline authority over edits, and we are merely giving them the means with which to officially do so. It seems to me that credential flashing needs to be discouraged rather than enshrined in policy.

Additionally, these proposals make the assumption that people who hold such credentials are more objective than those who do not. This is not necessarily true. If this credential verification idea goes through, Kurt Wise is perfectly capable of coming to Wikipedia and setting himself up as an expert on evolution, as he holds a Phd in paleontology from Harvard. However, he also believes that the Earth is ten thousand years old. People would, as previously mentioned, defer to him in such matters, but the question is, should they? Similarly with David Irving; he has written thirty books on history but should we trust his opinion on Hitler? People like that are the reason we insist in citations, not qualifications. I really cannot not see what benefit this policy will bring to Wikipedia other than to set divisions between us and appease the media, all of whom use us to abuse us anyway. Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 09:32, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

As far as I can see, this policy has the following basis -- "gentle (or firm) discouragement for people to make claims like those that EssJay made, unless they are willing to back them up." That as I see it is the only argument in this proposal for "why people would verify their credentials?" I see nothing in this proposal which would change how we treat the edits of people 1) with or 2) without credentials. Can you quote the part of this proposal which would change how we treat the edits of people 1) with or 2) without credentials? --Rednblu 10:22, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Three words, the Essjay controversy. The reason Essjay was fired was because he used his credentials to win content disputes with other editors. He won those disputes because people deferred to his qualifications. Most people who push their qualifications in such a way are generally asked, firmly but usually politely, to not do this because we have no way of proving their qualifications. If this proposal goes through, and people can genuinely prove they have the qualifications with which they seek to smack around the heads of other editors, it's inevitable, like we did with Essjay, that we will defer to their views, whether they provide references or not. This will happen whether we write it down or not, and at all costs it should be avoided. Wikipedia is run by the collaborative power of millions, utilising the power of crowds, such power should not be harnassed by "experts". Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 10:31, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
This proposal would not change how editors treat people who actually have the credentials that EssJay claimed. Is that right? --Rednblu 10:47, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Yes it would. It's not written into the proposal, but that is the intended effect. Otherwise why would it matter whether someone actually had those credentials or not? Who gave a toss that Essjay lied about being a doctor in canon law until it was discovered he had used false credentials to railroad other editors? Jimbo didn't. I didn't. Few people considered Essjay's lie to mean he should leave or stop editing, so who cares if other people lie? The issue at hand is that he used his credentials to browbeat other editors - which he shouldn't have been doing anyway. It doesn't matter whether someone who claims to hold a doctorate in canon law actually does or not, because they shouldn't be using it for anything other than as a point of interest and maybe to provide sources if they have access to a reference library. Thus the whole credential verification thing is only of interest to people who intend to say "Look, I have a doctorate in canon law, I know what I'm talking about, stop arguing." Which is a very, very bad thing. Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 10:56, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
I am interested, and I do not intend to say anything like that. You must have missed the lengthy discussions in the archives of harmonious and constructive uses for credentials. btw, Essjay did not "railroad" or "browbeat" in the diffs I saw. Derex 11:02, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Enlighten me. Why does it matter to you that people know you actually hold such qualifications? Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 11:28, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
It doesn't; I'm not interested in me having credentials. I'm interested because I'd sometimes find it useful to know when someone else is an expert. There are examples scattered all about the various debates on related pages, which someone should gather. But here's a few. [16] Derex 11:42, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
The reasons provided largely down to being able to ask advice from people with certain expertise. I do so regularly, such as asking people proficient in other languages about translations. However, credential verification is not needed for this - someone being asked about a historical period on which they falsely claim to hold expertise will quickly come unstuck. And relying on someone purely on the basis of their academic qualifications rather than the sources they provide is a bad thing anyway. So that does not provide an adequate answer as to why this time-consuming policy is needed. Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 13:44, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
WP gets its editors for free and has no incentive to save them time. Mind, this is not meant as scathing criticism but only as an observation. Gwen Gale 13:54, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Some do, and I think it's valid. But that's not the reason I personally gave in that section. Here's another, more to your point. [17] Derex 22:05, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
Your troll anaology works only if credential verification gives experts the right to "rule" on certain sourcing issues. Which is a very very bad idea. Go to Citizendium if you want to do that. Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 22:44, 16 March 2007 (UTC)
False, as discussed in the link. Derex 08:40, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
Well, maybe you typed it with invisible ink then. In any case, my discussion with you have clearly rebutted the guy above, because he said that the policy would not result in a two tier system and your attitude clearly shows that it will. And the fact that no-one can agree on that is only a recipe for further chaos. Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 08:48, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
I don't understand your remark. Derex 09:07, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

If I have the vaguest idea what "no original research" and "must be attributable to a reliable source" are driving at, then credentials here (attached to usernames) are irrelevant: if you are indeed a credentialed expert and have something to say on a subject, say it elsewhere, in what can be cited as a "reliable source", and then cite that source when saying it here. Your name and credentials can be part of the content quoted here from the reliable source; they should not be something you wave around in any other context. Nothing in the encyclopedic content should be based upon anyone's say-so here, no matter what credentials they claim. Am I anywhere even vaguely close to the underlying concept?

This shouldn't even be restricted to academic credentials -- though of all people in the world, degreed academics should know how to cite sources and not base things on "Well, *I* say so" -- but should extend to any claim of special knowledge or expertise. You interviewed Dr. Sir Lord World-Renowned, PhD x 12, and he said THAT? Very nice; where did you get this interview published, so you can cite it as saying so? Hey, I've started the fire, by traditional means, thousands of times over my life, and let me tell you, the best way to do it is -- hold on, I'd better cite Firelighters' Guidebook for this....

What I've done, whom I've met, what they told me, what I've learned over my lifetime, and what I've got the paperwork to prove I know -- and you too, bub -- are all wonderful things to paste across our userpages.... but when it comes to putting it in articles, you and I had better be able to cite a reliable source in support, and our own say-so ON-WIKI won't cut it. Do I repeat myself? Very well, I repeat myself. I am a small entry on this page; I contain a single idea. (Walt Whitman fans, please wince in unison.) -- BenTALK/HIST 15:48, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

Well said, Ben. Perhaps these sentiments should be added to What Wikipedia is Not. // Internet Esquire 16:26, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks Ben. Yours is no single notion. This is spot on what I've been getting at. Gwen Gale 17:19, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
I agree completely, Ben. I share those concerns.
* But this proposal does not give editor credentials 1) more or 2) less influence than they have now. Hence, we should approve this proposal for just what it is, says, and does in preventing the EssJay problem from happening again. --Rednblu 19:38, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
* Notwithstanding all of my support for this proposal, I also agree that currently certain editors, because of their credentials, are able to organize a pack that rips out the NPOV that their original research denounces as "wrong." But that is a separate problem; I can see that EssJay tried to do that; from the history record, I don't think that EssJay was successful in doing that. But that problem of editors using their credentials to organize a pack to rip out the NPOV that they would like to "relegate to the dust bin of history" is a problem that we should deal with -- not here -- but in straightening out the murky and self-contradictory text on the current NPOV policy page. Would you agree? --Rednblu 19:38, 17 March 2007 (UTC)
Thank you,Ben,for clearly expressing reality . I agree with you 100%. 64.229.185.22 20:14, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

Asking people to verify their claims is a reasonable request. Experience outside the so-called Wikipedia community can be just as informative and to most reasonable people far more informative of a person's capacity to compose text in a particular subject area. If usernames are intended to establish a wikireputation, wikipedia alreay has a de facto system of credentialling, and the debate seems primarily focused on whether or not to recognize any credential other than wikipedia edit history and social cues related to community standing here.

That said, let's ask Mr. Wales to verify his claim that "good people" are advancing the proposal and that those who oppose it are "hysterical". Since he can bring no signed order from God (not a minor god-king, but the actual co-creator of the known universe) that says the people advancing this proposal are "good" let's just say "people" are advancing the proposal. The problem is that Wales is attempting to slip in another de facto set of credentials based on Wales' ostensible authority to declare people either "good" or "hysterical." This time it's not college degrees, it's moral posture. Such characterizations -- even in the affirmative such as referring to one's allies as "good people" (a widely used mob moniker, I might add) is an ad hominum attack that implies the respondant is unqualified to challenge the ideas of "good people" because the respondant is morally inferior. We've seen this enough from you, Jimbo. You slither around the world characterizing anyone involved with your project who happens to be on your good side at the moment as "good" while systematically demeaning your critics. When you do apologize, it seems more an attempt to silence criticism than to acknowledge and account for error.

Just one question -- why are you still here, Jimbo Wales. You're not wanted here. It will take several years for some to realize how they are caught in the web of your flawed ideology writ as Wikipedia, but your immediate exit would start things rolling. Instead of cramming another of your wild ideas down the throats of people already choking on your misguided desire to craft the world in your own image, why don't you just butt out.

Bye now.

Ornizo 11:32, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Ornizo 11:32, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Hello

I just felt like saying hello to the man who started it all. Thanks for Wikipedia and all that.--SUIT양복 05:28, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Me too; hi! TomasBat (@)(Contributions)(Sign!) 20:46, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Yeah me too! I hope to see you at the meetup in Adelaide :) Darkcraft 08:54, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

Suggestion- RFA process

The RFA process here on Wikipedia is very pethitic. Again and again same 6 questions (3 compulsory and 3 optional) are asked from every user. Do you know what I was planning to do. First I thought that I will be copying the answers from the page of any user who has successfully becamed the admin. And then I would have also been simply becamed the administrator. But don't worry, I am not a Vandal, rather I want to make Wikipedia and associated media a feature. I wish I could make it my career. The only thing I wish to convey to you is that the questions asked for the nomination should be different. And I noticed many such WP:RFA pages of many admins. Some of them were alike. Thanks Sushant gupta 13:32, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

People usually aren't stupid enough, given that one of the questions asks "what contributions are you proud of"- copying someone else's answer for that is probably the worst thing an RFA candidate could do. – Chacor 13:45, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm certain that plagiarizing another candidate's replies would lead to swift and overwhelming rejection. DurovaCharge! 22:54, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Actually you both are right, I am sorry, I should have read it with open mind. I just take a fast look. Thanks Sushant gupta 03:19, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

NBC News

NBC Nightly news tonight has coverage of the wikipedia reliability issues. Web link here Abecedare 22:33, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

It seems to be a typical news coverage, focusing on the controversies and not the positive aspects. Hopefully this does not create another surge of people trying to hinder our progress as a community. — Deckiller 22:37, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
More likely, the news media serves a much greater community, and is reporting concerns that Wikipedia hinders the progress of the community at large. Ornizo 12:00, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
The broadcast news item featured the Lisa Daniels page and this edit. So maybe some editors should watch the page for vandalism. Abecedare 23:01, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Also, I am disappointed that they did not even mention the thousands of people who dedicate themselves to reverting edits like "Lisa is a rock star". I understand that they only had five minutes to make this report, but they should have taken both sides into the picture. — Deckiller 23:05, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Why should media continually report what burglers steal or how property owners recover their property, when the real story is that the victim refused to secure their property in the first place? Ornizo 12:00, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Thats right, blame victims and not crimminals, geesh --Tom 14:33, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Three days ago, when she was working on the report, she vandalized her page. It was reverted within one minute.[18]. — Deckiller 23:19, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Question on a basic principle of Wikipedia

We have to give licencing for images... but doesn't Wikipedia fit under educational? So we can take copyrighted stuff... right? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by W1k13rh3nry (talkcontribs).

Wrong. See Copyright, Fair use, Wikipedia:Fair use, Wikipedia:Copyrights, and probably a dozen other pages I can't recall right off-hand. --Carnildo 01:47, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Fair use legal rights provide wide latitude for the use of copyrighted material for educational and other purposes. However Wikipedia is more than just a no-cost encyclopedia. We are a free (libre) encyclopedia, meaning we want everyone to have the freedom to copy and modify and redistribute all of our content. We are the freedom encyclopedia, not just the no-cost encyclopedia. WAS 4.250 06:29, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Yeah I know about all of those, but I recall something about educational stuff be exerpted from copyright laws... mabye in some places its not? ~ —The preceding unsigned comment was added by W1k13rh3nry (talkcontribs) 14:21, 23 March 2007 (UTC).
You do not "know about all of those". If you understood fair use then you would not be asking this question. It is not so much that people don't know stuff that is the problem; it is that much of what they know is not so. WAS 4.250 16:37, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Attribution/Community discussion

Jimbo, and Jimbo page-watchers, please join the discussion regarding the Wikipedia:Attribution proposal. Marskell 09:14, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Block at Christopher Michael Langan

Hi Jimbo. Since you acted earlier at Christopher Michael Langan in response to FNMF's alert about potential libel, I thought I would notify you that FeloniousMonk, the administrator who originally inserted the lawsuit section, and who, after it was removed, re-inserted it on the grounds that its removal was a "pov whitewashing of well-sourced events", has now blocked FNMF for 48 hours. For discussion, see here and here. FeloniousMonk was previously admonished by the ArbCom not to use his administrative tools in content disputes in which he is involved, and the administrator who declined FNMF's unblock request, JzG, had also argued for the lawsuit's inclusion (in part so that it could illustrate, in his words, "the obsessive behaviour to which [Langan] is stated to be prone"), and has apparently even been in contact with Mega Society members. Input from you or an uninvolved administrator would be very welcome. Best regards, Tim Smith 16:07, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Greetings, Jimbo. I second Tim Smith's notion, though I want to note something: Shortly after FeloniousMonk (FM) made the block, I advised him to remove it[19] [20], per the first step in DR against an admin. Prior to this incident, FM had accused me of having a personal axe to grind and of being a banned user's sockpuppet, I was very careful to keep a civil and professional tone. redacted/Otheus 18:30, 23 March 2007 (UTC) FM has not contriubted (till now) since I made either of these comments on his talk page. So please give FM a chance to respond. --Otheus 16:29, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
(For some context, FM was made administrator in August 2005[21] (64/15/9) and has been an involved party in 4 resolved ArbCom disputes.[22]. Disclaimer: He and I have had a dispute over his OR at neologism, Denialism. He has filed a checkuser on me for evading the ban on User:Agapetos_angel at Jonathan Sarfati. I made my first edit to the Langan article yesterday. My first edit to WP was Feb 2006[23].) --Otheus 16:47, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
(also, checkuser could not show FNMF was the same as the banned user (discussion)) --Otheus 17:43, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
FNMF has recently noted on his talk page that, concerning the warning he received from FM, he asked for clarification, but received none. [24]. --Otheus 17:58, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

To clarify Tim's post, he is conflating actions which occurred well over a month apart. Whether FMNF had valid concerns about the case (I don't believe so, but that's another issue), he is doing exactly what the arbcomm case said qualifies as disallowed activities. Since FMNF chose to ignore warnings posted 3 days ago, and has engaged in personal attacks, a block is in keeping with the arbcomm decision. Guettarda 17:28, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

We need a little more input at WP:IAC

The Wikipedia:Ignore all credentials proposal seems to be failing to develop a consensus. Your name is being used to block closing it out based on a comment you made very early on, as evidence that you may be overriding the discussion. If you could please review the discussion and clarify this, and possibly offer additional comments, we would be grateful. Mangoe 17:56, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Potential libel

Dear Mr Wales,

I'm writing to notify you of a situation which has developed in the entry on Christopher Michael Langan. I and others consider that material in the entry is potentially libelous. Perhaps the chances are this situation will not develop into an actually litigious one, but I thought it best that you were at least apprised of the facts of the situation, in case you wished to intervene to minimise Wikipedia's exposure to this problem.

Mr Langan is of minor note: a "high-IQ" auto-didact who worked for 20 years as a bouncer and has developed some ideas of his own about the relation between mind and reality which he considers to be original and important. The grounds on which his notability is finally established, warranting an entry in Wikipedia, is, however, more likely the fact that he became the object of interest of various articles and television segments, and more particularly the subject of a television program directed by Oscar winner Errol Morris.

Mr Langan considers his ideas to be important in potentially bridging the gap between evolutionary scientists and proponents of intelligent design. He became a fellow of an intelligent design society, gave a paper at an intelligent design conference, and contributed a chapter to a book of papers largely concerning intelligent design. For all that, he continues to deny that his theories amount to intelligent design, on the grounds that his theory is not a scientific theory, and as such is not susceptible to scientific verification or falsification. Whereas, of course, intelligent design proponents explicitly seek to prove their ideas scientifically. I, for one, do not consider him a proponent of intelligent design, at most a fellow traveller, though even this is doubtful.

For various reasons, Mr Langan has incurred the ire of others. These reasons include: his association with proponents of intelligent design (which incurs the wrath of those who feel intelligent design is a threat to science); his own ideas (which some people judge to be incomprehensible or pseudo-science, and hence unworthy of inclusion in an encyclopaedia); and his claims regarding his IQ (which annoys some people who doubt the validity of such high-end testing). Additionally, Mr Langan has made himself unpopular by editing his own entry under a pseudonym (Asmodeus), and refusing to finally identify that the operator of the pseudonym is in fact Mr Langan. His wife also edits, under the name DrL. Both are now banned from editing the entry on Mr Langan (for reasons I am not convinced are sound, but that is neither here nor there). It is my opinion that because of the feelings generated by all this, a group of editors is behaving very poorly in relation to this entry.

The potential libel, however, does not concern any of this, but rather a lawsuit between Mr Langan and a high-IQ society. The lawsuit was uncontested by Mr Langan, and thus only one side of the evidence was presented in court. Nevertheless Mr Langan argues that there are indeed two sides, and that the insistence on portraying one side of the dispute without portraying the other is potentially libelous. He has been supported in this assertion by at least his wife, DrL, by the user Sheerfirepower, and by myself. He has requested that the lawsuit not be included at all in the entry, on the grounds that including this section is libelous. This is supported by the above users. These requests have been ignored and ridiculed. The court record has been treated as a statement of fact with no regard to the reality that it reflects one side of the evidence. Many failures to apply the official policy on living persons have occurred.

It is my opinion that the circumstances of the lawsuit resemble very closely that given as an example in the policy on biographies of living persons concerning a "messy divorce." The dispute was indeed a matter of a divorce between two groups of people fighting over the spoils of a high-IQ society. The dispute is not notable or important in any way. It is being included in the entry for no reason other than to attack the credibility of Mr Langan. It is possible, although I do not know this, that some of the editors involved in the entry are parties to the other side of Mr Langan's legal situation. I strongly believe there are no grounds for including the legal dispute in the entry on Langan.

I feel compelled to add that I do not have any association with Mr Langan, do not know him, am not a proponent of his ideas, nor a proponent of intelligent design. I know of him through Mr Morris's television program.

Mr Langan's request that the section be omitted, and his account of the circumstances of the legal dispute, occurs here.

My arguments that inclusion of this section, and the editing of this entry generally, has violated official policy regarding the biographies of living persons, are presented here.

And finally, a summary of the events, listing more of the relevant diffs (including the above two) has been presented at the Biographies of Living Persons Noticeboard here.

I hope this is of interest or use to you, and that it is taken in the spirit in which it is intended, that is, as an expression of concern, both for Mr Langan and for Wikipedia. Thankyou for taking the time to read this. FNMF 07:59, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Thankyou for taking the time to consider the matters raised above, and thankyou for your clarity and decisiveness in relation to these matters. FNMF 12:59, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Unfortunately, I also feel compelled to inform you that the immediate response of the editors to your decision was to delete all the references the article contained which were sourced from Langan's website, hosted from the Megafoundation which he founded. See the deletion here. The argument was that because the lawsuit must be removed, therefore all references to Langan's own association must be removed. I am unable to explain their logic any further. The article itself contains no references to the foundation. The effect is to delete the supporting evidence from the general information contained in the article. The insistence on this deletion is vindictive. Apologies for burdening you with this, but thought it may be of interest as it is a direct consequence of your own, entirely justified, edit. FNMF 14:06, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

The article did' contain mention of the foundation. WP:BLP with respect to the Mega Society demands that we note they are not affiliated, even if we cannot source that fact. Most of the rest of the megafoundation references were removed because of WP:SELFPUB; we may only use them to support statements by the subject of the article, not about the subject of the article. I think the disclaimer is required even if we only point to the Foundation's site, though. And you're both wrong about WP:OR, as the section describes the primary souces clearly. However, I'm not going to appeal to the board, as the section may be removed as it doesn't have reliable secondary sources, and is only marginally relevant to statements made in the article. If the article is rewritten to include any statement about CTMU as fact, CML's alleged intellectual dishonesty in claiming control of the Mega Society and its trademarks becomes relevant. — Arthur Rubin | (talk) 14:23, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

Per this comment, I take it that you are saying that we must remove everything drawn from primary sources? And don't you think that such a radical redefinition of OR should be taken up at WT:ATT first? Guettarda 15:52, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

WP:BLP used to suggest that material from primary sources should not be listed unless there was a secondary source discussing it. The example of Bill Gates's mug shot seems appropriate; if no reliable source mentioned it, we couldn't include it; but if a reliable source mentioned it, correctly or incorrectly, we could include it. I can't seem to find that anywhere, so maybe it's not in our guidelines any more. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Arthur Rubin (talkcontribs) 00:23, 21 March 2007 (UTC).

Dear Mr Wales, just wanted to reiterate that your intervention was clear and decisive, and to inform you that the dispute which followed in the wake of your intervention is ongoing. A summary was made here. Thanks again. FNMF 04:07, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

For an account of what I believe are important policy issues arising from the problems with the Christopher Michael Langan entry, see here. FNMF 03:09, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Maybe its time to let go Jimbo

If you think you should still be unilaterally overriding consensual changes of policy, perhaps its time that Wikipedia and yourself parted company, as you are showing the classic signs of failing to understand that a child is growing up. Wikipedia is now run by a foundation, and foundations are not supposed to be personal playthings. I don't see much sign that you are prepared to accept limitations on your self-conferred arbitary powers, so the best thing you can do for Wikipedia is now to move on and hand over the reins to new leaders who won't regard themselves as god-creators with unlimited powers. Osomec 15:45, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Please read my messages on the mailing list to better understand what I believe. I suspect you will be pleasantly surprised.--Jimbo Wales 17:52, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

But then, as Osomec exhibits so well, there is a vast difference between what one believes and what by their presence they induce others to perceive. C.m.jones 22:46, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

I am exceedingly appreciative of the contributions of leadership and common sense that Jimbo still donates here. We would be in far worse shape without it. 150.203.2.85 00:04, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Agreed, SqueakBox 00:05, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Both anon and Squeak are missing the point I think. At this stage, Wikipedia is roughly the equivalent of a late teen or early twenty-something. Paternalism in the sense of guidance is fine at that age (although sadly often ignored), but paternalism of a Solonic nature is problematic. •Jim62sch• 01:22, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm not missing any point; I said exactly what I meant. From what I've seen, we're damn lucky to have his input. Wikipedia is not a person; it does not have one mind. If anything it is the world's largest committee. Argument by analogy is worthless anyway, particularly when the analogy is as horribly inapt as that one. 150.203.2.85 03:29, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Wikipedia is still innately tied to whatever nonsense the mainstream media pumps out - the majority will only edit what they have been told by the media, with whichever spin the media puts on the subject - all the other subjects are subject to the censorship of personality contests.
Wikipedia is meant to be attempting to be FACTUAL, not invent and distort information because one of the personal bias of people like User:Merbabu think I and the US Dept. of State are evil wicked "anti-Indonesian" people whose information should be excluded from Wikipedia. That is after all the reason User:Merbabu follows me around Wikipedia to delete any new information I provide. Does he really care about Merbau wood or did he revert my edit because of his dislike for the editor. Why did he have my edits removed from the Transmigration program, because it didn't suit his spin on the subject - - I simply stated some facts, 6.27 million, not 2.5 million; and as I've always said, the program was NOT stopped in 2001. THese are the type of facts User:Merbabu wants excluded,video, newspaper and special articles, and government reports.
It is sad, that Wikipedia has become a popularity contest instead of a publishing endeavour.58.107.15.245 14:01, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
We've gotten a bit off track here.
150.203.2.85: want to explain why the analogy is inept? Jimbo has taken on a decidely paternalistic role here (which was the inital point of this thread). As a father of six, ranging in ages from 1 to 22 I think I have a pretty good handle on the issue raised by Osomec. •Jim62sch• 20:38, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
Really and truly, it's pointless but I will. But first, it's a sad statement that someone can't remark on Jimbo's page with appreciation for his truly amazing leadership (part of that is being hands-off on most issues) without being told he doesn't get it and dragged off for a philosophical debate. I'm posting as anon because that's a sincere sentiment, and I don't want anyone to think it's a suck-up (am not an admin either & don't hobnob on IRC, maillists, etc.) I'll not respond further, because this is ridiculous. Wikipedia is not a child. It does not have cognition. It does not have will. It does not have a mind. It does not necessarily even learn from experience. It is a mass of individuals each following their own incentives. Not one single element relevant to the wisdom of severing the parent-child relationship is present here. Anyway, I can as easily say Wikipedia is a toddler as you can say it's a teenager, and with just as little justification (I'm a father too). One might as well compare a small country to a child as to compare Wikipedia, as each is similarly composed of individuals following their own judgement and aims. Countries tend to fail rather spectacularly without any government at all. Jimbo has showed remarkable restraint as the de facto governor-general around here, usually stepping in only for a damn good reason. It may be that some other leader than Jimbo would do as well, but we need someone who can cut through the committee crap when need be. And I'd say the very success of Wikipedia to this point is a tremendous testament to his judgement as a leader. So, he may choose to move on for his own reasons, but if someone wants to push him out they're going to have to do better than some ridiculous, inapt, unsupported, inapplicable, pulled-out-of-your rear analogy that I'd fail a student for making. 150.203.2.85 21:53, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
It's precisely because, in my opinion, Wikipedia is supposed to be factual, that I'm very happy with user Jimbo Wales' contribution to recent policy discussion. Some users were attempting to change longstanding policies, including changing wording that talks about the very purpose and meaning of Wikipedia (i.e. whether Wikipedia is supposed to try to be factual), without going through a proper policy-changing process. User Jimbo Wales has as much right to participate as any other user. --Coppertwig 22:03, 22 March 2007 (UTC)
I'll mostly ignore the first post...making an anonymous stand is effectively the same as making no stand at all (yep, pulled that one out o' me butt too). Also, no one said you could not post your thoughts here, however, I will remind you of WP:CIVIL and, more importantly, WP:NPA. Finally, no one is trying to "push him out", there's no coup afoot here, and I think most if not all editors appreciate his work here (in otherwords, anon, don't jump to contusions).
Coppertwig: no one was suggesting that Jimbo could not participate, as a regular user (or admin, etc.). At issue (see re Post above) was the deletion of a portion of an article out of process, and the posting of an untoward message on an Admin's page. Please do some research before jumping into the fray. Thanks. •Jim62sch• 12:06, 23 March 2007 (UTC)
Some juvenile whose been editing for LESS than two years, I think •Jim62sch•'s opinion is completely worthless.
See WP:NPA. Oh, BTW, you neglected to mention the 13,000 edits and 3 FA's.  ;) •Jim62sch• 14:29, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

- Actually I don't, but that would be applying is own logic to his input. The fact is that long term editors, people like Tannin and others who have contributed quality content for years to this project and who have been victimized by neo-rednecks like Wik and his helpers, are very qualified to talk about Wikipedia's weaknesses. Look at the Transmigration Program article, it is a joke. I just added a Reference link about the current Manpower & Transmigration Minister - - of a program the Wikipedia article says ended in 2001. It and probably a dozen other articles related to Indonesia have become the private property of a group who use Wikipedia to push their political bias; certainly I have used Wikipedia for six years as a PUBLISHING tool to put commonly mis-understood facts into the open. I edited the Kangaroo article hoping Americans would stop boycotting Australia for using kangaroo meat - I did not trick people with lies, I put the truth in front of them that the Roos being culled were not the same ones that were endangered. The truth helps others. But people who promote propaganda as 'facts' are not helping anyone but themselves. The Wikipedia community should at least allow publishing of all the reasonably verifiable facts.58.107.15.245 14:07, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

  • What Jimbo Wales did here is called leadership, it was direly needed in this situation, and I'm glad he did it. — MichaelLinnear 00:40, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

wikinews:Universities ban Wikipedia as primary source

Can wikinews have a quote for this story? Personally I believe that Wikipedia should be a starting point for research, high-school kids should be allowed to cite it, but at university level you should be following the references and citing them. --Brianmc 09:54, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Work it, Brianmc! Yep, my fiancee teaches at Berkeley, and although she encourages her students to use wikipedia to their li'l hearts' content when doing initial research (or simply satisfying their curious late-night intellectual appetites), she makes it clear that if they cite wikipedia in a paper, they'll suffer ridicule! I'm sure that this isn't a 'hard and fast' policy of The University System As A Whole, but any individual teacher at the university level who is slightly competent ought to make it clear that wikipedia is a 2º source and therefore unfit as a reference for citation purposes. --Cajolingwilhelm 04:32, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Signature

Hi Jimbo Wales. Now, there is a little matter which I would like to have it improved. Many users want your signature in there sign-books (even I do), but I am not very sure if you would be willing to sign all those sign-books; so, I come with a proposal. There is this transclusion sub-page called Universal Autographs, where users can post there autographs and share it with all who have got the transclusion code on there sign-book. So, if you were to sign there, then you would, in a way, be signing lots of sign-books in just 1 shot!

"You keep asking how they [signature books] help build an encyclopedia. But you also link to Wikipedia:Esperanza. I think that is your answer, no? Anything that builds a spirit of friendliness and co-operation and helps people get to know each other as human beings seems to me a good thing. Unlike divisive userboxes, the autograph books seem to just be about saying hello and being friendly."
Jimbo Wales 13:08, 20 December 2006 (UTC)

So, what do say?

--TomasBat (@)(Sign) 00:05, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

Gee, why not just copy it to your page...it would mean the same thing. See look, the coding is quite simple: --[[User:Jimbo Wales|Jimbo Wales]]
Wouldn't that work? If you want mine, you can copy it from here also...all the bits, only half the calories. —Doug Bell talk 11:29, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

Well, that doesn´t sound very traditional. The user should sign his name, not have it copied.

--TomasBat (@)(Sign) 20:41, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

But you're OK with transcluding? Maybe if I saw the point of the pages I would get it, but I don't. Transcluding doesn't seem any more "traditional" than copying the signature to your page—in either case, the user didn't actually sign your autograph page. —Doug Bell talk 21:15, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

Well, in a way yes, because the user agrees to make his autograph available to all when signing in the transclusion; the user signs lots of them in one shot... --TomasBat (@)(Sign) 02:21, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

OK, but like I said above, you can copy my signature...so I'm agreeing to make it available...no? BTW, I like your previous signature better—per WP:SIG, "Markup such as <big> tags (which produce big text), or line breaks (<br /> tags) are to be avoided, since they disrupt the way that surrounding text displays."Doug Bell talk 02:32, 11 March 2007 (UTC)

In the case of your signature yes, because you are agreeing with sharing your signature; but Jimbo Wales is not telling me that I can copy his signature... I suggest that either he signs Universal Autographs or that he himself states below that I can copy his signature, of which either option will certainly take less than a minuite...

(As for my signature, I just changed the font, I didn´t use any big tags) --TomasBat (@)(Sign) 00:08, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

As for your signature, try removing size="4" from it—that has a similar effect to <big> and is covered under the such as qualification in the guideline regarding markup. Then you'll get TomasBat, which is less disruptive. Thanks, —Doug Bell talk 00:15, 13 March 2007 (UTC)

You mean like this?: TomasBat (@)(Sign)

Anyways, Jimbo Wales I await an answer... If you sign, it will certainly take less than a minuite... TomasBat (@)(Sign) 20:37, 15 March 2007 (UTC)

Well, lets make it simple, Jimmy Wales, all you have to do is type the letter a right below this message if you give me permission to copy your signature to Universal Autographs; the procedure is extremely simple and it will certainly take less than 1/2 a minute, this way you will use up extremely little time and make many users happy... TomasBat (@)(Sign) 01:42, 17 March 2007 (UTC)

  • I still await an answer...TomasBat (@)(Contributions)(Sign!) 01:19, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
    • Uh, you think maybe this is getting ridiculous? You're creating an argument here for deleting these pages. The community consensus in the recent deletion discussion was that while the pages might be OK, canvassing or other wise advertising to get signatures was discouraged. —Doug Bell talk 01:29, 18 March 2007 (UTC)
  • I suppose so... Yeah, this is getting ridiculous... I apologize to Jimmy Wales for making such an argument for such a minor matter.

But, ive got an idea which could be a logical solution to this situation: If Jimmy Wales does not reply before this post is archived, then I will take his silence s a yes, I am willing to let my signature be copied into Universal Autographs; but if he does reply before this post is archived stating that he does not give me permission to copy his sinature to Universal Autographs, then, of couse, I will take his answer as a no.

This way, if Jimmy Wales hasnt got any problems with letting me copy his signature to Universal Autographs but just is too busy to respond, then he auctually can respond without wasting any time! And if he has got problems with letting me copy his signature to Universal Autographs, then he can reply stating so if he is so concerned.

Now, I will stop posting here unless someone else makes a comment and I feel the need to respond to that comment.

Happy editing... TomasBat (@)(Contributions)(Sign!) 20:16, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

I wonder, just how is this non-response-blessing any different than my original suggestion to just copy the signature. Neither imparts any meaning, just as transcluding a page into dozens of other signature pages has no meaning. Really, I think it's time to find something more productive to worry about than pestering people for their signatures and creating all manner of rationales to "legitimize" putting a signature on your page for someone who didn't actually sign your page. It's all quite silly. —Doug Bell talk 17:11, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

Unblock

Could you please unblock 202.76.162.34 now? I don't want to create an account under that address. And could you please delete the article Multimedia Applications Development Environment? 124.180.66.13 10:02, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Just unblock 202.76.162.34 right now! Gninnalbleumas8hi 01:12, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

On Wikipedia

Hello Mr Wales, I know you are a busy man, but I can't help wondering what you think of my short section "On Wikipedia," located on my user page. All the best. FNMF 00:32, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Archimedes Plutonium

That page serves no encyclopedic purpose. I think it's inhumane to maintain it and would urge you to use your execute ability to delete it.--CSTAR 20:09, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

If you think it should be deleted, put the article up for AfD so there can be a discussion on whether to delete it. No need to ask Jimbo to do this. Pyrospirit Flames Fire 15:33, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Regarding the situation at Christopher Michael Langan

Hello, Mr. Wales.

Wikipedia administrator FeloniousMonk, who is unquestionably guilty of serial defamation and obsessively controlling the article Christopher Michael Langan (along with fellows and sympathizers of "Wikiproject Intelligent Design" including jim62sch, Guettarda, KillerChihuahua, Arthur Rubin, ScienceApologist, and a constant stream of trolls and single-purpose attack accounts), has just further abused his/her sysop powers to issue a retaliatory block against FNMF, the person who most recently blew the whistle on him here. The stated reason for the block is that FNMF's editing patterns are allegedly similar to mine, which of course comes down to a suspicion that he (she?) is identical or at least personally known to me, and/or that I am prompting him in some way.

Accordingly, I hereby inform all concerned that to the best of my knowledge, FNMF is not connected to me in any way. Indeed, a checkuser was already run on FNMF, and his location is already known to be geographically uncorrelated with mine. I don't know him or even know what his initials stand for, and as nearly as I can tell, there is no reasonable, legitimate suspicion that he is, or is related, to me or to the subject of the biography article that he has been constructively editing. I do, however, know that his corrections to the article have been almost 100% accurate, and that the reversions made by his administrative opponents have been almost 100% erroneous. This leads me to believe that what we have here is simply a tedious continuation of the malicious behavior on the part of certain wayward sysops which you recently responsibly interdicted. (Thank you for your intercession.)

This is an old story for FeloniousMonk, who has long been a liability and an embarrassment to Wikipedia. I happen to be attuned to this situation because FeloniousMonk and his meatpuppet brigade - since "meatpuppet" is one of their own most cherished epithets, I'm sure they won't mind wearing it themselves - are largely responsible for snookering the Arbitration Committee into banning me indefinitely from the CML article even though I have no significant history of editing that article. (Of the two or three minor and entirely justifiable edits that I made to correct errors and improve intelligibility, the most recent occurred almost half a year before the ban was issued.)

This, of course, raises a question: given that FeloniousMonk has a long and colorful history of manipulatively abusing his sysop powers in order to prevail in personal, editorial, and procedural disputes, and also to exact sweet revenge on those who dare to challenge his various abuses, why is he still tolerated here as an administrator, and why is his word preferred with such blatant prejudice over those of his victims? It simply fails to make sense, given that Wikipedia is actively promoted for its supposed neutrality, reliability, and compassion.

For my own part, I'm trying to be as understanding as possible about this. Indeed, I've been angelically tolerant of it for almost nine months now. But as any neutral observer can plainly see, the Wikipedia sysops who have been specializing in this article are among the very worst elements ever to endanger the reputation and future wellbeing of the Wikipedia Project. Unfortunately, nobody seems to want to do anything about them. This is an intolerable and therefore unstable situation.

Accordingly, I would respectfully ask that you instruct FeloniousMonk to lift his abusive block against FNMF and stop persecuting better and more responsible editors than himself, and if at all possible, to pry this ill-intentioned administrative troll and his cohorts from the article in question and shoo them permanently away from it. As I hope you'll agree, letting this kind of recidivist policy violator retain special powers to anonymously censor honest editors and torment Wikipedia biography subjects reflects poorly on the entire Project, and could ultimately cause it to be subjected to unwelcome and exacting forms of scrutiny.

Thank you and best wishes, Asmodeus 02:54, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

File a calm, pleasant, and informative RfC is my recommendation. I am not going to personally get involved in the details of this, although I do think that the block of FNMF was not warranted in this case. FeloniousMonk has been an admin for a long time, and knows what to do, and not every little thing I disagree with really warrants me doing anything about it. But I do think this is worthy of a bigger discussion.--Jimbo Wales 01:42, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for your kind response, Mr. Wales. Your RfC suggestion is duly acknowledged. However, I feel compelled to point out what I now consider to be a proven fact: the Wikipedia dispute resolution process is catastrophically fallible. It is too easily hijacked by those with the means to do so, and too often leads to the sanctioning and amplification of abuse. I know this because I've experienced it repeatedly.
As mentioned above, DrL and I have already tried to obtain relief through the Wikipedia dispute resolution process and were punished for it. I was banned from an article I edited three times in perfectly justifiable ways, and DrL was banned for trying to protect its accuracy against slurs and falsehoods calculated to harm its subject. Was this due to other infractions on our parts? I don't think so. Our only "infraction" was self-defense, and self-defense is not a crime. Not a single move made against us here by a Wikipedia administrator has been justified, and we do not regard this as an accident. Experience tells us that trying to obtain relief through a process that has already failed us, and was in fact turned against us, would only lead to further attacks. The attacks were vicious and baseless the first time around, and they would be equally vicious and baseless the second time around. So where is our incentive to pursue this process? Why should we invite further harm to be done to us as Wikipedia administrators again circle the wagons to shield one of their own from the consequences of his actions? Perhaps you can see our dilemma.
Let me speak frankly. I understand that you want this site to run itself...you want it to conform to the Internet ideal of freedom and democracy, and for everything to come out right. That's a noble aspiration. But in real life, ideals are seldom realized, and human nature is notoriously unfriendly to this one in particular. Bureaucratization corrupts freedom and democracy; they inevitably deteriorate as power-seekers make their way to the top, form alliances, and help each other exert their wills, exercise control, and suppress opposition. It's the way of the world. Because you wanted to create an encyclopedia, you were forced to bargain with the devil, so to speak, and establish this kind of bureaucracy. I understand your position and appreciate its difficulties. But as reflected by your supreme stature in the Wikipedia hierarchy, you are finally responsible for controlling that bureaucracy and reversing its failures, and if this is not possible, for reforming it.
As regards your belief that not every little thing you disagree with really warrants action, I see your point. But as I'm sure you're aware, the personal reputations and nonprofit endeavors of Wikipedia biography subjects, and the accurate representation of their work and ideas, are not "little things". As an encyclopedia, Wikipedia can succeed only by encyclopedic prioritization; accuracy and neutrality must always take priority, not only over the administrative prerogatives of Wikipedia sysops, but even over the bureaucratic protocols and procedures through which they function. After nine months of misery on their account, I'd appreciate it if this could be born in mind.
Again, thanks for your help and advice. While you are deciding how to handle DrL's request below, I request that you keep a watchful eye on this still-volatile situation lest it once again degenerate. Asmodeus 18:24, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Time Magazine

In the 2 April 2007 issue of Time Magazine, you made a comment:

"We're looking at software tools that will allow the community to quarantine edits from people we don't know. No one in the Wikipedia community would write that Sinbad is dead [as happened on March 15] and leave it up there. That would be a bannable offense - no question"

  1. As for these software tools, did I miss a discussion somewhere? How long have these been in the works? Also, can you please elaborate on what you meant by "quarantine." It sounds like a good idea though.
  2. Wouldn't making something the Sinbad case a "bannable offense" violate WP:AGF, WP:BLOCK and WP:BITE if it was a new user who made the edit, or did you mean only vandalism that got major attention from the media? Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 04:27, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Stable versions have been in the works for a long time. They were announced as an upcoming MediaWiki feature at Wikimania 2006 (Signpost). And in my opinion purposely perpetrating a hoax as damaging as that is an immediately blockable offense. —bbatsell ¿? 04:32, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Okay, I have heard of stable/live versions, I've just never heard them referred to like that. But with the hoax/vandalism, who determines whether it was done maliciously or as simple vandalism? Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 04:47, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
The quote from Time was reconstructed from the reporters notes it seems, as those are not my exact words. But the gist of it is correct and not in any way an announcement of anything new or unusual. Bbatsell is right: the software under discussion is "stable versions" which I am told is Coming Very Soon. As for the other part, I was not talking about vandalism by either anons or newbies, but rather how the core community would treat such vandalism if undertaken by an actual member of the community. Not "immediately blockable" but "bannable". That is, if we can even imagine such a thing, just imagine if some upstanding normal Wikipedian put something like that into an article. There would have to be quite a good explanation and a lot of apologizing to avoid a ban, I think, and the damage to someone's internal reputation would likely be permanent.--Jimbo Wales 00:26, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Jimbo, would you elaborate on that statement and update WP:BAN? That post of yours will probably get quoted at community ban proposals. Those of us who volunteer with that developing area of Wikipedia spend our time weighing what to do with the individuals who make that sort of post or something similar, and it would be a great help to us to know exactly how far to extend that boundary and where it should bend. DurovaCharge! 13:26, 26 March 2007 (UTC)


Electrowinning

This probably isn't the place to post this, but last evening I was perusing material on the Web about copper refining, and looked to see if Wikipedia had an article on "Electrowinning."

Indeed it does, but unfortunately, the article begins "Electrowinning, also called electrorefining..."

Although both electrowinning and electrorefining use electrolytic cells, they are distinct processes. In electrorefining, you use an anode of impure metal, and plate pure metal onto the cathode, thereby refining the material. In electrowinning, the goal is to extract all of a metal from a leach solution containing it, and you use an insoluble anode. Oxygen is liberated at the anode, and the metal is replaced in solution by hydrogen ion as it is all plated out onto the cathode.

To make matters worse, I noticed while Googling "Wikipedia electrowinning" that this boo-boo, amongst others, was cited 18 days ago in an article titled "Accuracy of Wikipedia" about the EssJay controversy, and distributed over Shoutwire.

Currently "electrorefining" is a redirect to "electrowinning", and the electrowinning article is written from the POV that the terms are synonyms. "Someone" needs to fix this. If we have an "Articles That Are Wrong" list, this article should be added. Hermitian 13:48, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Be WP:BOLD and DIY -- febtalk 13:51, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Interesting question, Hermitian. I hope you know more about Electrowinning than I do, and will edit the page accordingly. ;) ... dave souza, talk 20:11, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Your Admin Are Rude

In general, your admin and admin hopefuls are on power trips. As such, their conduct is often rude and flip to those they have pre-judged as guilty. You've got high school juniors acting like the "trolls" are vermin who must be exterminated mercilessly and the way they treat people is outrageous. They feel it beneath them to explain their actions. It makes Wiki a joke, which is part of the reason why Wiki gets so little respect in the offline world. I think the problem is that you give these jokers real power to castigate and banish members of the populace. But THERE'S INADEQUATE OVERSIGHT. That's the beauty of the US government... checks, balances, oversight. When people in a position of power know that they have people looking over their shoulder, they get their act together real quick. But in Wiki, it's so difficult for the powerless to fight back and the process takes so long.—Preceding unsigned comment added by 12.20.13.2 (talkcontribs) 05:56, 25 March 2007

"So little respect" eh? It's not like virtually every student uses it as a reference or anything. --Deskana (talk) 15:32, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
I have to agree with what 12.20.13.2 says, and I've been in Wikipedia for ~2 years. (Wikimachine 16:32, 25 March 2007 (UTC))
I just don't like administrators being generalised in such a way when I try my hardest to be fair. --Deskana (talk) 16:46, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Just a few, however not too few to be ignored. Sorry. (Wikimachine 17:00, 25 March 2007 (UTC))
But should the actions of a few mean new rules for all? If we have too much "checks, balances, oversight" there will be such a bureaucracy, things will never get done, like in the US government. Edit wars will go on for days while admins secure approval from the Page Protection Committee. Blocks will become useless as appeals will become easier. Its not like admin actions are irreversible. Any other admin can reverse an admin's decision. Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 17:34, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

(outdent) The IP that began this thread has been blocked for 24 hours for disruption. See Wikipedia:Suspected sock puppets/Jonawiki. DurovaCharge! 13:16, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Wiki Is Exploited As Brochureware

Too often I am seeing Wiki used as an opportunity by those with vested financial interest to exploit Wiki as a propaganda machine. They insist that every major negative point about their company/institution be "balanced" by a minor positive point for the sake of NPOV. Through their experience on Wiki, they "game the system" by using personal attacks, sockpuppet accusations, NPOV, RfC as their tools to quash dissent and run off anyone who dares to expose anything negative about their employer. It seems that the bias on this site is to add positive feel-good trivia. But GOD FORBID people malign the good reputation of such and such with statements written neutrally and in compliance with WP:ATT. Again, this hurts the credibility of Wiki because it acts an obstacle to reaching true NPOV when dissent is constantly under a witchunt. this experience makes me want to never use Wiki again, tell everyone I know what a joke this site is and write editorials to the NYTimes and WashingtonPost explaining my experiences.—Preceding unsigned comment added by 12.20.13.2 (talkcontribs) 05:40, 25 March 2007

Please give the site's existing processes a chance to work. Post a request to the administrators' noticeboard that supplies relevant details and page diffs. If the complaint has merit then things can get sorted out. DurovaCharge! 13:15, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Invitation of create account

I am the administrator of Classical Chinese Wikipedia, hope that you can go the here to create an account in order to prevent others register this name, thanks a lot! --KongMing 09:25, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

With unified login supposedly coming in next month, that seems kinda pointless. Dev920 (Have a nice day!) 18:23, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Re: Christopher Michael Langan - request from DrL

Dear Jimbo,

First, I would like to thank you for your positive intervention at Christopher Michael Langan. Over the last several months, this article has been fraught with problems involving editorial and administrative hostility toward its subject, along with blatant disregard or misinterpretation of a number of important Wikipedia policies including WP:BLP and WP:OR.

Asmodeus and I were banned from editing the article last December, after grave abuse of the administrative process by rogue Wikipedia administrators including FeloniousMonk, Arthur Rubin, and others. FeloniousMonk engineered two bogus "3RR" blocks against me and then convinced the ArbCom to impose an indefinite ban against me and Asmodeus. Absurdly, Asmodeus was banned from editing an article that he had only edited three times, and not at all in the six (6) months preceding the ban.

Although the real motives behind these actions were more or less evident from the start, they became unmistakable when Wikipedia administrator FeloniousMonk and others inserted, over the strong objections of Asmodeus, a package of defamatory misinformation provided by certain litigious parties hostile to the subject of the biography, under obvious protection and encouragement from his/her fellow administrators (Arthur Rubin, Guettarda, jim62sch, KillerChihuahua, and others).

You have now stepped in, and pointing to the relevant policies, have made it clear that WP:BLP and WP:OR were indeed being violated. Of course, since you are finally in charge of the Wikipedia Project, it is not surprising that your word is being taken as law. However, the exact same things have been pointed out to the violators by others many times before, and were merely used as occasions for fun, belittlement, and administrative persecution.

I would appreciate it if the nature of my editing of this entry could be reviewed in this new light. I believe that I was banned not because of "disruptive editing" as put forth in the "ScienceApologist" RfAr, but because I was suspected of being the wife of the subject of the bio and a potential defender of NPOV from those Wikipedia administrators who wished to skew it or let it be skewed by others. While I never admitted or denied being personally involved - as long as anonymity is allowed at Wikipedia, that will remain my prerogative - I always tried to follow Wikipedia policy and maintain neutrality in my editing. I firmly believe that whenever I made an edit to the article, it was an improvement in terms of neutrality, accuracy, and flow.

FeloniousMonk has compiled this "evidence" against me. I stand by the neutrality and factual accuracy of all of my edits. The main argument against me, while hinting at all kinds of imaginary misdeeds and ulterior motives, ultimately revolved around the fact that while Langan was being aggressively portrayed as a militant ID advocate (despite no declaration to that effect by Langan himself or anyone who knows him), I had tried to balance the article by removing obvious violations of WP:OR. This argument was clearly no good. It has now been consensually established that while Langan is a fellow of ISCID, to label him an "ID advocate" is to go beyond verifiable facts, and thus to violate WP:OR. So it would now appear that I was right all along. Yet I remain under an indefinite ban which was designed to let FeloniousMonk and his friends do whatever they pleased, right or wrong, without answerability or meaningful opposition from anyone with actual knowledge pertaining to the article. Since this ban was abusive and wrongfully imposed, I would like my edits to be reviewed in this new light, and the indefinite ban to be lifted.

Of course, the ban against Asmodeus should also be lifted. The large green tag at the top of the article's talk page gives everyone the erroneous impression that Asmodeus and I were legitimately found to be disruptive and "self-promoting". But this is not actually the case. Asmodeus rarely edited the article, did not edit it at all for six months prior to the ban, and is unlikely to edit it in the future on anything but an emergency basis. We have no shortage of other matters that demand our attention.

There is a good reason that I am writing to you personally instead of opening a Request for Comment. The reason is this: after the RfAr mentioned above, and this previous abusive Request for Comment, I no longer have faith in Wikipedia's dispute resolution process or the integrity of many of its administrators. Asmodeus and I have already wasted a huge amount of time and effort trying to obtain relief through the channels allegedly provided for that purpose within Wikipedia itself, but were only abused for our trouble. Quite understandably, we are hesitant to throw good time after bad.

Thanks for your attention to this matter, and for anything that you can do to rectify this error and prevent future abuses of this kind. --DrL 17:24, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Please either post a dif of my "obvious protection and encouragement" or withdraw the accusation. KillerChihuahua?!? 17:37, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
In the series of edits beginning here you reinserted, distorted and further edited contentious material in violation of WP:OR and WP:BLP in spite of the fact that the user that you believed to be the subject of the article (as well as others) had repeatedly complained about the content of the passage being biased, innaccurate, and potentially libelous. Policy would indicate that this material should have been removed by an administrator. By reinserting and reediting such material, you are putting your stamp of approval on it. In an instance such as this, where there is obvious contention, your actions are not in keeping with your role as administrator. It is not only against policy, but puts Wikipedia at risk, since it is not merely users who are engaging in harassment and defamation, but Wikipedia administrators. Granted, you were the least offensive of the administrators hovering over the article, but you lent enough support to further their cause. I don't feel the need to remove your name from my complaint. --DrL 18:51, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
No, I reverted a whitewash, then edited to format references and reworded some questionable content from the revert. You are discussing a content dispute, in which you assert that fully cited content is in violation of OR and BLP. You are in error. OR would be inserting content not fully supported by the sources, or drawing original conclusions; not including well-sourced content. BLP is not violated by well-sourced and non-libelous content. All of which is completely ignoring my request that you either provide a diff which supports your allegation of my "obvious protection and encouragement", or withdraw it. Adding the spurious charges that I have inserted OR and violated BLP is not either withdrawing your previous accusation, nor providing any evidence to support it. I repeat, either provide difs or withdraw the accusation that I gave "obvious protection and encouragement". KillerChihuahua?!? 19:42, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Adding, "the user that you believed to be the subject of the article" is complete nonsense. You have absolutely no reason to imply that you have any clue what I do or do not believe about the user who made the edits. As it happens, I do not know, nor do I at this point much care, who that editor is. All editors are black text on a white background to me. KillerChihuahua?!? 20:05, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
No need to respond. And this is just my opinion. It seems to me that an RfC phrased in the witty, informative, and even-tempered style of your above comment would be very useful right now. In particular, it seems to me that you should challenge the wide Wikipedia community in such an RfC to deal with its responsibility to make sure that what is on the Wikipedia page is factual--by trimming to only what can be cited to published reliable sources that have verified their facts. --Rednblu 18:07, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
And how would you ascertain that a source has verified their facts? Best we can do is to describe the opinions and reporting of facts, published in sources that are considered reliable, and when there is reasonable doubt about the veracity of these facts, we attribute the opinion to the notable person/book/journal/newspaper that published it, without asserting these as facts. ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 18:31, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Dr L: Ei incumbit probatio qui affirmat, non qui negat, "...under obvious protection and encouragement from his/her fellow administrators", aut criminationem proba aut revoces! •Jim62sch• 20:04, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Well said, my friend. It seems to me that we have to depend on the published opinions of the reliable sources within any discipline to judge whether any other particular source has verified their facts. That is, for example, in the assertion of facts about a living person, we should make sure that some secondary source has used the assertion of a primary source in a way that implies that the secondary source as a professional within that particular discipline has verified the assertion of the primary source. We could work out this verifiability algebra for any particular Wikipedia page as case-in-point, if you wish. Just attributing the opinion to a reliable source is not enough -- because what is a reliable source that the statement was made may not be a reliable source for whether the statement in the opinion is true. Truth matters, and we must depend on secondary reliable sources to assess that truth for us. And truth matters much more for living persons than it does for the interesting and fascinating rumors on whether or not Shakespeare wrote Julius Caesar. --Rednblu 20:26, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Michael Aquino article

Just to let you know, I responded to your comments, I'm not clear on whether or not you simply read the (less than accurate) summaries on the talk page claiming it is an "attack page" or that I am a "character assassin" - or if you actually took a look at the article. I don't think any part of the article took information from the conspiracy theorists, it dealt only with the established facts. The conspiracies are things like "Aquino was protected because the Attorney General's office was filled with Satanists" or tried to tie Aquino with the Franklin Coverup Scandal which alleges that Nixon and Bush were involved in a pedophile-ring. *That* sort of crap certainly does not belong on Wikipedia - I agree, but the actual information about the investigation, and subsequent dismissal, is in no way painting Aquino in any more negative a light than we paint Richard Jewell - in fact, as the primary author, I'd have to say that it seems the article is overly sympthetic towards him, highlighting the media's "witch-hunt" attacking his mother, mentioning that his critics are largely considered conspiracy theorists, and such. Sherurcij (Speaker for the Dead) 01:25, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Attribution/Poll

As you will likely be hearing about this in any case, and you were involved in this discussion, I'd like to let you know I've protected this page. I have not been involved in the discussion, and there's been a tremendous edit war over its wording for several days. If you believe this will be unhelpful, please reverse me, but I believe this will help those in the dispute to come to a resolution on the poll's setup and wording. I think it's an important discussion for the community to have, and it can't start while its framework is being warred over. Seraphimblade Talk to me 02:41, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Enjoy, Jimbo!

Trampton 03:38, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Chess

This may be a bit of an odd question, but do you like to play chess? It's for your article, and I just noticed the discussion on Talk:Jimmy Wales. If you could, reply there so it's more visible to the people interested in possibly adding this somewhere in the article. Thanks, Pyrospirit Flames Fire 14:57, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

I've worked with User:Bubba73 in the chess category; he is one of its most helpful contributors. I guess in this context, a userbox would do the job. YechielMan 16:54, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Sockpuppetry, meatpuppetry, blatent attempt to make a page about (effectively) themselves

Hello Jimbo, i'd like to bring to your attention Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Xenoharbingers. While it was initially a fairly obvious piece of vandalism on the part of my friend (and by searching through the various socks you can see other pages he's made for himself, such as Kojiami), he has decided to bring sock and meat puppets in to complicate it, and he has told me (over MSN) that he plans on making false sources, such as podcasting, using friends in his local paper, and other various things to keep his site up. Even if this weren't about half a dozen different types of policy violation and vandalism, i'd consider this a violation of WP:POINT to prove the concept of wikiality. While I could go deeper in the story, the basic concept is that i'd appreciate it if you would look over the article and the AfD (along with the various sock/meat puppets voting keep, compared to the history and talk pages of users voting delete) and would delete the page and protect it from recreation. I don't care about people that dislike wikipedia, but people who have such contempt for wikipedia that they turn to trolling and vandalism very much piss me off. If I have to report a friend, so be it, he wasn't much of a friend anyway. -- febtalk 21:10, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Thankfully, another admin speedy closed this. Hopefully it will be prot'd against recreation -- febtalk 22:24, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Screens at live performances

Somebody asked about this at Wikipedia:Media copyright questions#Screens at live performances. So, I mentioned Image:Kate Walsh Ted Global 2.JPG again, which is an example of such an image. --Rob 08:42, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Talk Stephan Barrett

I am a new editor, and a really slow learner I must say but on this talk page there are people talking who are repeating the same thing and it's getting no where. I thought that since you are one of the one's to start Wikipedia, that maybe your help is desperately needed here. If you would check it out, it would be appreciated. Thanks in advance, --Crohnie 20:36, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Try opening an article content request for comment. DurovaCharge! 15:59, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Sign my autograph page!

Hi jimbo, could you please sign my autograph page? Then sign Annafoxlover's and Qmwnebrvtcyxuz's sig books? They would be really grateful. Please? :-)  Pengwiin  /  tal I worship you.

See the first item on this talk page (#Signature). —Doug Bell talk 23:56, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Rough times

Wikipedia succeeds because you have lead it to place ideas over objectives. Wikipedians continue to participate in Wikipedia because you created a place in which they can trust and come to like others and may be supported by others in return. These are rough times, but it is your leadership through kindness that has gotten us where we are today. With your continued trust in your own judgment and the ideals that you set in place long ago, we all will get through these rough times together. -- Jreferee 15:59, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

A biased AfD closure

If you look here you will find that an admin seems to think he has an overriding vote in the AfD. Out of all the almost identical votes on each side and ranting and raving, it was clearly a No Consensus closure. Also, Most of the delete votes and the nomination were WP:IDONTLIKEIT and wasn't a game guide and WP:FC and WP:LC are not policy and are just concepts forced upon people to get articles deleted. Can you please do something about it. Henchman 2000 18:16, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Jimbo is unlikely to. Try taking it to WP:DRV. --Deskana (talk) 18:17, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

This is not intended to be a told-you-so

Last year, I stopped editing on Wikipedia because I stopped enjoying it. In large part that was because of my dealings with Essjay and the fact that when he abused his powers as an administrator, I couldn't get enough help to go through the multi-layered and time-intensive process to stop the abuse. I even posted here and was ignored.

Basically, and in my opinion, Essjay was a bad admin. Not enough attention was paid to his actions in administration, and now it is clear that not enough attention was paid to his using false credentials in order to 'win' disputes.

I do understand and am very glad that the result of the controversy will be a tighter watch on claiming credentials in disputes. I also hope that more attention will be paid to administrators' foibles and failings and that when an editor such as myself with a history of volunteering for Wikipedia brings forward a serious complaint, there is help to get them through the long process of dealing with that complaint (or the process is made clearer and more compact...I couldn't afford the tens of hours it would take me to get through it all to a point of resolution...who can?).

Thank you for your time reading this comment on Wikipedia. I've now returned to editing in hopes that it all improves from here...the way a community-driven project should. --Kickstart70-T-C 20:12, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Essjay was a good admin. I do not think anyone has questioned that; no one even suggested he never abused his privileges. Rather he claimed to be someone he was not, and used that to his advantage in disputes. Prodego talk 00:01, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
And many of us are saddened that he had to go. He was a good editor and a good admin and we miss his efforts. He made a mistake, and he has been held accountable for it as needed to to be done, but that is all. ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 00:30, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Sorry, but we will have to disagree about him being a good admin. Good admins don't give account suspensions to people who simply have asked questions that the admin is sick of answering, which was the case I was involved in. Jossi, you know this. While in general he might have been ok, in specific circumstances (and my case was not the only one) he abused the volunteer non-admin editors, and therefore abused his administrator abilities. Further, his refusal to participate in non-binding conflict resolution procedures put in place to help admins and editors solve problem made it clear his disdain for 'ordinary' volunteers. His actions turned me off Wikipedia entirely, and it wasn't until I heard the news that he was leaving that I was at all tempted to come back. I know I'm not the only one in this situation as well. --Kickstart70-T-C 00:50, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Adminship ain't easy, and we all make mistakes. Look at any active admin's blocklog... ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 00:58, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Here, here. I've reverted the wrong edit before, and consequently left a warning on the wrong editor's talkpage before. I've even closed an AfD I had voted in. We are all humans; we have just received a promotion of trust in the community to use these tools. — Deckiller 01:01, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Essjay made a mistake, like everyone does. He also made it very early, when he did not know the consequences. It all came back to haunt him later, since he couldn't deny what he had said before... The longer he put it off, the worse it got, and eventually it imploded on him. Yes he should not have used his 'position' to gain an edge in disputes, but a few incidents are hardly enough to merit such a reaction. Prodego talk 01:07, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Highly problematical category; advice needed

I have some serious WP:BLP concerns about Category:Anti-Semitic people. I nominated this category for deletion, but it appears that, as with the previous 6 attempts, there will be no consensus. I'm asking you to weigh in - not using your "God King" powers, but rather, giving your opinion as a respected member of the Wikipedia community.

This category was created by User:Battlefield, a sockpuppet of banned User:SirIsaacBrock. Ever since its inception, it has been the subject of controversy, edit wars, and POV arguments. It is clearly intended to be placed on biographical articles; this creates inherent WP:BLP issues, since very few people in the modern era self-identify as antisemites, and many would consider such a claim to be highly insulting. Since such classification is a matter of opinion, the category violates WP:NPOV. In most cases, it will not be appropriate for an encyclopedia article to outright state that someone is an antisemite. Instead, if they have been called such by prominent groups like the ADL or SPLC, this should be indicated, with citations. If they've made prominent anti-Jewish statements, those should be documented and cited. If they committed atrocities against Jews, list that, again with proper cites. But it is unencyclopedic to openly brand people antisemites, whether in the article or by category. If anything, a category is worse since it is free-floating and contains no documentation of the claims contained therein.

Most of the "keep" arguments seem to me not to be well founded in Wikipedia policy. WP:USEFUL comes up a lot. Many users say something like "Keep, antisemitism really exists and is really a problem." No one disputes that. Racism exists too, but Category:Racists was deleted and salted for the same reasons I listed above. Other users say "keep, since it's been nominated six times before", but GNAA was nominated nearly 20 times before finally being deleted.

This category is an embarrasment to Wikipedia. It really needs to go. Crotalus horridus (TALKCONTRIBS) 00:45, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

I think the category is useless flame bait and always going to be POV pushing. Perhaps a neutral alternative that serves whatever legitimate navigational purpose could be created? Not making a decree, I am just saying.--Jimbo Wales 03:05, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

The ATT merger poll you requested

Hello Jimbo. Per your request, we've been attempting to assemble a straw poll through which the community can express its opinions regarding the Wikipedia:Attribution page and the merger behind it. Unfortunately, a great deal of disagreement has arisen as to what structure the poll should take. After over a week and work by hundreds of people across a variety of pages (drawn in by the previous Watchlist notice to make sure it was properly advertised), the final form of the poll is beginning to take shape and the discussion is basically down to the form of the main Question in the poll. In an attempt to gain a clear concensus, a last straw poll is up and running to decide the form of "Q1" as we called it. The pre-poll is divided between the top five most desired forms, based on all the previous discussion. Please see Wikipedia_talk:Attribution/Poll#Pre_straw_poll_straw_poll_for_Q1 . Your comments will be appreciated. The target date to start the actual poll on ATT that you asked for is 04/02/07 at 00:00UST. This pre-poll for Q1 is tentatively slated to run to 04/01/07 22:00 UST to hash out this last major detail. - Denny 03:09, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

I'm currently informally mediating between people on the Attribution project. If possible, I'd like to talk with you as well at earliest convenience. I hope you have 10 minutes at some point in time. --Kim Bruning 03:35, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Melbourne meetup, 27 April

I've created this page - Wikipedia:Meetup/Melbourne 5 - to coordinate efforts for the proposed breakfast meetup on 27 April. I'd better get you to sign up on the page to make sure it's set in stone. :) Metamagician3000 07:57, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

DRV review

Please look at the most recent versions of Southern mafia and Unholy Alliance. There was unusual interest in their deletion by self-identified deletionists, religionists, or conservatives. After edits addressed original criticism, they continued to attack the articles to get them killed as "inherently not inclusionworthy." As a result, the considerable information in those articles got buried. There have also been threats against and vandalism of Dixie Mafia. I ask that they be restored and protected from edit for six months, and that you look into possible similar activities of users Arkyan, Blueboar, and Anthony. Thanks. --MBHiii 14:05, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Niddhogg Poem

I've written you a short poem.

Will you be my friend? With haste Niddhogg, To the healing spring of Jutenheim. Nay hath actually a spitpool. I'm not even f**king joking. So lay waste to the roots of the world tree, Lay waste to the shadows of Midgard Thankyou for reading

212.219.57.126 14:14, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

You've been accorded a new honorary title.

Jimbo, if you'd like a warm chuckle have a look the allusions in this post (which ranks among the wittiest support reasons ever posted to WP:RFA).[25] DurovaCharge! 14:58, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Question for Jimbo from DrL

Hello, Jimbo - DrL here. I'm hoping that you've had a chance to read my last letter to you.

I know how busy we all are, but I'm still wondering how editors who have not violated Wikipedia policy get banned from editing particular articles even when they have conspicuously refrained from editing those articles in a disruptive way (as opposed to removing slurs and falsehoods planted there by Wikipedia sysops and others, or merely enhancing their accuracy and flow).

My first letter was admittedly a bit long, so I'll try to reduce it to just one question. How is it that Asmodeus has been banned from editing the article Christopher Michael Langan when he only edited this article two or three times, and never in a disruptive way? In fact, Asmodeus had not edited the article at all in the six months prior to the ban. This makes it look as though he was banned from editing the article simply because he was suspected of being its subject...a kind of "punish the potential criminal before he has a chance to commit the possible crime" sort of maneuver. (I haven't yet gotten a chance to see the sci-fi movie Minority Report, but I understand that its plot runs along those lines.)

Regardless of RL identity, what Asmodeus and I have done is not against the rules of Wikipedia. In fact, the rules explicitly allow it, especially under the circumstances that existed when we were forced to do it. Even if you think of it as "bad form", it was still immeasurably better than allowing CML and CML-related articles to be trashed by those hostile to him and his ideas. (Not to seem impertinent, but the New Yorker says that you edited your own bio 18 times in the space of a single year. Unlike those who have been harassing Asmodeus, I choose to exercise good faith, and therefore assume that you had very good reasons for doing so. Is it really too much to ask that the same good faith be applied to Asmodeus and me?)

If you can't bring yourself to address this situation, then is there some kind of "Supreme Wikicourt" other than the ArbCom - i.e., other than the court whose bad decision I'm appealing - to which I could make my case briefly, conveniently, and without wasting too much more of my valuable time in pursuit of another ridiculously inequitable outcome? Hopefully, any such august panel would consist of real people rather than anonymous sysops, many of whom have been causing significant problems for Wikipedia by way of administrative abuse.

I'd appreciate any constructive advice that you could give me. --DrL 18:57, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

(aside) Please wait before trying the following advice in detail until those who control the file edit permissions have figured out how to do this. I will fix the links below once the permissions controllers have figured out a solution. Thanks for your patience. --Rednblu 23:29, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Could you please assemble an RfC on this matter? I looked at how you might do that; someone else may have a simpler means for you to file a good RfC on this matter. First, you might fill out the Facts, Policy interpretations, and Redress of remedies that you would request of ArbCom at a Placeholder I created on the Workshop page for the previous ArbCom decision. Second, to ask for wide community involvement and comment, you could put a request for comment at RfC with a brief summary and link to the above Workshop page where you have already filled out your Facts, Policy recommendations, and Requested redress sections. I speak merely as myself, just as one Wikipedia editor who hopes that Mr. Wales would correct something in the Wikipedia process that has completely gone wrong. But by my judgment, Mr. Wales already has done all about this that he should do. And I would appreciate it if you would assemble your argument for RfC, including the historical record of the necessary corrective intervention that Mr. Wales has already made in this matter, for which you have so graciously thanked him, so that the RfC process could get the Wikipedia community to deal with this issue--which, in my opinion, extends to many current pages. And then I would say, you should appeal this to ArbCom to get some things changed, but I would appreciate getting the views of many good thinking editors in an RfC on the issue you so eloquently present here. Does anybody else have some better advice? --Rednblu 23:02, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
As a matter of policy, the only avenues to appeal an arbitration committee decision are the arbitration committee or Jimbo himself. There is no precedent for the kind of community discussion you are contemplating that I am aware of, although if you are successful in gaining wide support, ArbCom would almost certainly take notice. I'm not sure where to suggest you host it, although the arbitration subpages are not appropriate unless ArbCom agrees to re-hear the case. One good place might be Wikipedia:Requests for comment/Asmodeus 2, although you would probably want to use a non-standard format. If you established it in user space (such as User:Asmodeus/RFC) you could work on the formatting to present your case effectively (even allow selected users to help you if you wanted); then move it to the project space via the move page button and make an announcement of it at various places where involved people will see it (such as the RFAR talk page and the article talk pages involved). Thatcher131 02:04, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
Thank you. I will ask DrL what direction should be taken. --Rednblu 02:38, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

User:MyWikiBiz reblocked

I've reblocked this account after he (inexplicably, in my view) created the obvious sockpuppet User:Zibiki Wym and made a series of posts documented here. In my opinion they are a not particularly subtle attempt at legalistic intimidation, and while not normally something blockable, in the case of a user blocked indefinitely twice they are. There were certainly no signs that he was going to become a productive user.

From my own personal correspondance with Kohs, I am of the opinion that he is an extremely unpleasant character who would not be able to work with Wikipedians long even if he wasn't being paid to edit, and from an email you sent to me last October I was under the impression that you at least partly shared this view. If you must allow him to edit, you're the boss, but I reblocked him under the assumption that just because you youself unblocked him, it didn't mean that further unpleasant behaviour would be tolerated. --Sam Blanning(talk) 23:34, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Actually the thread is here a little lower on the page. DurovaCharge! 02:37, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Association of Members' Advocates

Dear Jimbo, I would like to ask you what is your opinion on Association of Members' Advocates. This, because a user has opened an MfD against us as anyone could and has given some reasons. Mainly, the concerns were already told us by the current ArbCom: that we are to close to wikilawyers in arbitrations and I sincerely think that our perfomances in arbitration are really bad. But we never have received a complaint from MedCom nor from you.

My answer about our deplorable results on arbitrations is that a group of AMA (including me) have created The Arbitration Team, to help advocates with some training and give advocees the chance to have more experienced and balanced advocates on their arbitration. Yes, I recognize the team isn't working, but no one want to give us even a chance.

I'm not AMA's coordinator to guarrantee that all AMA members will respect the MfD result; let's hope that no "rebel" party appears (that would be a shame)... My only concern is what will happen with the people that have an unanswered advocay request; could (in case of a deletion result) the deletion be postponed until we answer all remaining requests or for a certain reasonable amount of time?

Thanks in advice; if you don't reply on time, I'll understand you couldn't and that we had bad luck. If you think we're the most useless thing on earth, I'll understand it too.

Best regards, Neigel von Teighen | help with arbs? 09:17, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Comment at Main page FU discussion

Saw your comment at the Fair use exemption discussion and thought you might also be interested to comment on a similar discussion about Fair use in Portal space.IvoShandor 09:52, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Wikipedia:Attribution/Poll

Per comments on the Talk page here, and in other locales, it appears groups of editors are specifically against Jimbo's specifically requested public poll to gauge thoughts/support on the idea of the ATT merger. As it has been stated that the Poll is "dead" per users such as User:WAS 4.250, I am nominating this. If there is wide spread support to run this poll, this page should be kept. The MfD is here:

Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Wikipedia:Attribution/Poll

Thank you. - Denny 16:08, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

The MfD has been closed as a speedy keep. the wub "?!" 22:11, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
Why nominate something as important as this for deletion? I don't follow the reasoning at all. Was it just to make a point? Metamagician3000 23:16, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
At the time there was fairly fervant opposition to the poll even happening from certain administrators (see the summary in the MfD). As so many people were heated up over this, I made the decision to nominate it to see if people actually did want it all over and done with, and the poll not ran. It seemed like a logical thing at the time... - Denny 23:18, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
Oh well, no harm done. As Yeats said, "You throw the sand against the wind, And the wind blows it back again." Maybe certain admins should bear this in mind. Metamagician3000 23:29, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Attribution/Poll

The poll is now open at Wikipedia:Attribution/Poll ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 01:44, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

The poll is not yet open. -- Ned Scott 03:43, 31 March 2007 (UTC)
It was open, until you and another editor closed it after more than 20 editors made their opinion known. This is unnecessary drama, only serving to polarize and politicize the discussion even more. After seven days of discussion that yielded nothing, a simple poll to seek feedback from editors was the best we could do, and even that was stopped. Oh well... I definitively had enough of politics to last me a year. ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 04:07, 31 March 2007 (UTC)
Poll was re-opened. Pardon our dust. ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 04:17, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

Translation under GFDL

Hi, I am 百楽兎, mainly writing articles on Japanese & Chinese Wikipedia. Because more and more articles of English Wikipedia are translated to Chinese Wikipedia, so recently a complicated problem and argument regarding GFDL still has no good solution there.

GFDL said "Translation is considered a kind of modification, so you may distribute translations of the Document under the terms of section 4." Easily speaking, it means translators have to obey GFDL, but there are technical problems when translating articles from one Wikipedia to another Wikipedia. For example, how to keep histories and contributors' names in a translation version?

I think it would be better if Foundation could officially give all wikipedians an instruction and explanation regarding this copyright problem. Thank you for your attetion.--百楽兎.png百楽兎 03:00, 24 March 2007 (UTC)

The pratice here to ensure translations conform to GDFL is to include a link in the article to the specific version from which the translation was made. For example the article Bernadette Chirac includes the template:
{{Translation/Ref|fr|Bernadette Chirac|oldid=13261887}}
Which produces:
There shouldn't be any problem with a permanent link to the history on another Wiki. WjBscribe 03:06, 24 March 2007 (UTC)
Translation WITHIN Wikipedia is a diffferent matter from translation under the GNU FDL. Contributors are implicitly giving additional permission (beyond the GNU FDL) to allow for the normal operation of the website under our longstanding traditions. So this means that while attribution is a courtesy, it is done for internal policy reasons and this has NOTHING to do with the GNU FDL. I do not think it is wise to have permanent links between versions in the actual article space, a mention in the edit summary is more than enough.--Jimbo Wales 01:38, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Jimbo, just to make sure we're on the same wavelength- we mean translations from one language Wikipedia to another, not just those within the same Wikipedia. But if you think the links are unnecessary/unhelpful, I'll let Wikipedia:Translation know to stop including/take out those links. Having the specific link available is useful for checking the original translation- would the link be an appropriate thing to include on the talkpage in your opinion (which would avoid users having to fish for the original edit summary)? WjBscribe 03:32, 25 March 2007 (UTC)
Well I mainly wanted to sort out the legal question from the practical question. There is no GFDL reason to include such links, as it is all within the Wikipedia site. There are practical reasons why such links might be helpful or useful, and I take no very strong position on that. In the very long run, though, we should try to avoid a culture in which a translation (even a partial translation) from German to Thai (for example) means that the Thai Wikipedia article must have a special link back to the German version even 17 years from now! :) A think that a notice in the edit summary combined with information on the talk page should usually fulfill our practical needs. But I respect that some people may have a different view, and I take no very strong position on it myself... other than saying that GFDL has nothing to do with it.--Jimbo Wales 00:31, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Thanks for clarifying. I don't see why 'our practical needs' would not be served by an edit summary and talkpage information, but will raise the matter for further discussion in the right forums. WjBscribe 00:34, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Another question, because this is a copyright problem, should our foundation officially release a newsletter to announce the solution or policy? Many wikipedians think "Translation between Wikipedias has to conform GNU FDL.", and many other wikipedians also think it is not reasonable. Consensus may be difficult, but at least all wikipedians shouldn't be opposite on this matter. --百楽兎.png百楽兎 02:05, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Hmm, a user Pi rate. Sounds like Irate, no? Prodego talk 02:10, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Not really, no. More like Pirate. --Carnildo 08:02, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

I find this a very strange position, given Wikipedia's vulnerability to issues like this one. I was the main contributor to this Wikipedia's article on Yagan. It got translated to German and posted on the German Wikipedia, without any attribution of authorship to me. As a result, anybody who visits de:Yagan will be utterly unable to ascertain my substantial authorship of the material in that article. That is a clear violation of the license under which I released my copyrighted material to the Wikimedia Foundation. I don't care about the violation, but I care that you don't care, if you know what I mean. Hesperian 04:06, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Therefore I strongly suggest our foundation make an official announcement, make a formal policy for this matter.--百楽兎.png百楽兎 02:15, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Comment on "blocks"

The presence of a "consensus system" where thousands of teen administrators block people from editing an encyclopedia, will be the downfall of this project, in my opinion. Would we want people without an ounce of wisdom, running the world? 16 year old human beings can be very smart about things that make sense to 16 year old human beings. They are not likely to ascertain enough wisdom to raise a finger to vote on anything in the world that has substance, let alone run a business, or a foundation.

Without a leadership that is wise, this experiment will self destruct into a dull noise, not an encyclopedia.

The real journalists of the world will pick up the pieces called Wikipedia and merge it to a real encyclopedia with a board, and shareholders and people with something at risk. Here, with most people not even using real names and credentials, life experience, there is no risk and too many opportunities to allow vandalism.

I agree with the university bans against Wikipedia that are being established around the globe.

Consensus? That is a joke. More like lynch mobs. Blocking has become more important than editing. ErgoEgo 02:41, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Autographs

Hello, dude! Hey, mind if you sign your name into my autograph list? :) IsuzuAxiom1007 (talkcontribsSign here!) 04:36, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

If Jim wants to sign the autograph pages, he'll do it himself. Signed, your friendly neighborhood MessedRocker. 19:28, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

Blocking Prof. Hewitt

Yikes! Censoring Prof. Hewitt will further sully the reputation of the Wikipedia. Do we need more of this?--70.132.21.226 16:05, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

Written by the professor, himself, I believe, as are most of the articles on concurent computation. Therefore, they present his views on the subject, rather than mainstream views. However, he is not blocked under his own account from commenting on talk pages. Only his alter egos are blocked. — Arthur Rubin | (talk) 03:04, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Citizendium?

I've read all the news articles I can find on the topic, but none of the interviews with you discuss your views on citizendium. While any personal feeling you have are interesting, I think the public record would benefit from your expert opinion. Is the advent of citizendium going to negatively affect wikipedia in any way? Is the editing process of citizendium in any way an improvement? If so, why weren't these changes merely incorporated into Wikipedia? At any time in the future will divulgence of Wikipedia's editors names be mandatory, especially as more and more people become adept at circumventing IP tracking?


I wrote an article on my blog on the subject that you may or may not find interesting, and any comments clearing up these murky gray areas would greatly be appreciated.

http://letstalkabouttheweather.blogspot.com/ —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 76.21.208.120 (talk) 20:01, 31 March 2007 (UTC).

Respectful care necessary, please remember

Dear Administrator of Wikipedia, Mr Jimmy Wales, I would like congratulate you on high quality and powerful influence website. I must respectfully warn of you to avoid defame the admired Communist Party of China, or great nation People's Republic of China. To do so creates many problem between our government and Wikipedia, as well as general relation with the West. I do not intend making threat, but I obligated to remind you that commercial operations of Wikipedia in People's Republic of China is dependent on government tolerance, and great appreciation will be shown of your assisting in producing editorial environment conducive to Wikipedia in China, including Taiwan Province related article. (I have zero affiliation with Communist Party of China). Wen Hsing 21:36, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

April Fools Day

The mop was Deskana *Glares* --Andrew Hampe | Talk 02:18, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

I didn't tag Special:Recentchanges as historical like I was planning to. --Deskana (ya rly) 02:19, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
...So? lol I think the joke pic should go back up. lol Not the Captain Jimbo Wales though. --Andrew Hampe | Talk 02:21, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Eh. I didn't protect the page. --Deskana (ya rly) 02:22, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Never said ya did. --Andrew Hampe | Talk 02:28, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
O RLY? --Deskana (ya rly) 02:29, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
ya rly :P —  $PЯINGrαgђ  02:38, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Great ASCII art

To Jimbo (and other readers):

I copied an ASCII art rendition of the Wikipedia logo to my user page. Apparently it was created anonymously and placed on the talk page of an IP address. Please take a look! YechielMan 04:58, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

April Fools and Vandalism

This is just my suggestion, you don't really have to take it, but here it is: it seems to me that there is a large amount of vandalism on april 1st (April Fools Day). You probably remember that hoax article, created on April 1st 2005, which was only removed January 2006 (see Criticism of Wikipedia). Therefore I propose a semi-protect of all articles on April 1st, or at least on creating new ones. Why not? -Use the force (Talk * Contribs) 21:19, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

I disagree we should do what we always do revert or remove. There's vandalism everyday how's one particular day any different? Xavcam 21:48, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

TIP OF THE DAY

Information.svg

Welcome to Wikipedia. We invite everyone to contribute constructively to our encyclopedia. Some of your recent edits have been considered helpful or constructive and have not been reverted or removed. Please use the sandbox for any test edits you would like to make, and take a look at the welcome page to learn more about contributing to this encyclopedia. Thank you. --Tewy 01:12, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

More specifically, Wikipedia:Tip of the day/April 1, 2007. --Tewy 04:33, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Re: Ich lerne Deutsch on your User page.

Dear Sir, I notice from your user page that you are learning German. I am a pretty good German speaker, and I would be happy to assist you with your learning if you would welcome such assistance. You may reply to my talk page or here, whichever you prefer. Thanks. Thor Malmjursson 02:32, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Ich auch! --Neigel von Teighen | help with arbs? 07:36, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

"Important" Video message

Your important video message won't play on my computer because it uses Java. Anyway, is this an April Fool's Joke? A• •F•O•X ¡u6is April Fool's Day 2OO7 02:37, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Yes, it was. ^demon[omg plz] 02:38, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
^demon, you didn't watch the video. Please don't misinform people. --Gmaxwell 02:40, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Who says he didn't? And how much harsher could you be, Greg? Signed, your friendly neighborhood MessedRocker. 16:14, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Merging Accounts?

Hi, Jim,

I have a question: Do you have any plans, or the foundation, to implement the merging of accounts? I have too many accounts but i can't usurp because there have been edits made. And there are no e-mails set. This is a software limitation, right? Thanks. Gaclbusiness 18:56, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

No, it's a legal limitation. The copyright of any edits that have been made belong to the account holder- if edits have been made then the ownership of the account cannot be transferred as that would involve tranferring the edits to your account, without adressing the copyright concerns. As far as I'm aware, and I may well be wrong, on a technical level you can usurp accounts with edits, it's just not allowed for legal reasons. --Deskana (ya rly) 18:57, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
So, in theory, a vandal could register 100 user names everyday, and some years down the road only 20 character user names will be available while at the same time there are thousands of unused accounts? Gaclbusiness 19:04, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
If there are no edits assigned to them, then they can be ursurped. Otherwise, they cannot, due to legal issues. --Deskana (ya rly) 19:21, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Pedophile infiltration concern

Also problem exist on page Pedophile, Pedophile activism - too many pedophile supporter view given light of day. I urge you Master Administrator Jimbo to use power to silence deviants and criminal. Be careful of infiltration of upper rank by those with agenda, if our Chinese Government perceives problem with Wikipedia, access freedom may need some careful measures. We see some concerning report in Western media, and within Wikipedia and related Wikitruth project. I hope you will make decisive and public actions. You do not require label of 'censorship' - I prefer 'content refinement' for benefit wider society.Wen Hsing 04:18, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia's Forgiving Policies on BLP Vandalism

This editor, from CBS no less, has been warned 10 tens over months. Now he/she's having fun vandalizing Lou Dobbs. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Lou_Dobbs&diff=prev&oldid=119361298

Jimbo, why don't you just cut to the chase with BLP vandals and blcok their IP's instantly before you get wikipedia sued again and again, more Sinbads, etc. These IP's are given 3 chances or more, usually more, while BLP's go on for hours with edits like "Lou Dobbs mom was a prostitute". This is just one example. Block the IP's instantly. AGF does not apply to people and IP's that are putting wikipedia/wikia/you in financial danger and media laughingstock status. Piperdown 02:41, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Funny- A CNET "headline" that involves you

I don't know if you're aware of this yet. "Wikipedia founder's bold experiment" --70.179.170.119 04:13, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Finally, a good April Fools' joke. Come on, who doesn't like the idea of wiki-based eye surgery? PTO 04:20, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
Very nice. Dfrg.msc 10:15, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Anaheim Hills, Anaheim, California

Mr.Wales,

First of all, I was banned a few months back for editing the Anaheim Hills, Anaheim, California page. But that is not why I am here. Recently a user, User:OFF232, edited that page, by the looks of it to try and clean it up. However, other admins have deleted his work, and even gone so far as to permenantly ban him, as well as delete 2 other pages he created over the past 2 months. I think this is unfair to do to someone, considering they did nothing wrong but edit a page that was in controversy.

Even though I am banned, I check back on the page once in a while, and have noticed that they keep reverting the edits he made. He has edited under IP's 75.37.134.182, 75.22.74.118, 75.41.182.188, as well as his username OFF 232. Now, my IP's are always 69.237.xx.xxx . As you can see, his and my IP numbers are not the same, but he is still being wrongly accused of being me. I think it is wrong that he is being treated this way, having all his hard work deleted because bitter Admin's on the page do not want ANYBODY to edit Anaheim Hills, and when people do, they accuse those people as me. I think a huge injustice has been done to User:OFF232 and his edits today that he keeps trying to revert, but get deleted by superior and abusive admins. Please check the situation out. 69.232.63.99 04:49, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

re: Alternative Paradigm wiki ?

Hi, I'd love to hear an answer, if you could find time to....!

— Xiutwel (talk) 10:27, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Citizendium and copyrights

Does Wikipedia plan to do anything about Citizendium using material without attribution, in violation of the GFDL? I checked out a few articles by name and then hit random page a few times. The majority of the articles I saw were substantially identical to their Wikipedia counterparts. None of them had a list of editors. A few linked back to Wikipedia. Some articles, including Jesus, List of inorganic compounds, and Ciénaga, Magdalena were obviously block copied from Wikipedia with no attribution of any kind or indication that there were any editors outside of those listed in the page history on Citizendium. This is in violation of the GFDL. --Born2x 17:43, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Maybe we should try politely asking them first. I'll see if I can contact them. --Deskana (talk) 20:27, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
They have an awesome "Contact us" page. Perhaps I'll register and try to find some place for centralised discussion. --Deskana (talk) 20:31, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Ahhh, trying to register led me to be able to aquire an e-mail address. I'll write to them. --Deskana (talk) 20:32, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Asking nicely isn't likely to help. According to their forums they believe they can violate the license... and even lock up content derived from Wikipeida under a non-free license. :( .... Worse, it seems that the primary motivation from this is to prevent us from benefiting from their work like they benefit from ours. ... No matter what you think of their approach to quality, their approach to ethical leaves a lot to be desired. :( I'm sure once they've been burned by losing all license to distribute a few articles and being called on it (if you violate the GFDL you automatically lose your license) they will begin conforming strictly while taking every legal measure to avoid helping us as we help them. ... I think we should still wish them luck, as we did with all of Sanger's prior unsuccessful Wikipedia forks, but I sure wish they wouldn't behave fairly.--Gmaxwell 20:44, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

Well I sent them a lovely little e-mail telling them it's a legal copyright matter, not something they can just shrug off. If they ignore me then I guess we should inform the foundation or something. --Deskana (talk) 20:51, 26 March 2007 (UTC)
Open Content License violations aren't pretty for the violator. I wonder if Eben Moglen would like to do the honors. GFDL enforcement might be an interesting line. --Kim Bruning 05:01, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
There are more articles that dont comply with GFDL licensing discussed at Wikipedia talk:We aren't Citizendium. Since these arent the only articles that are a concern, maybe we should documenting all of these in one place with difs say somewhere like Admins Noticeboard/GFDL issues. Especially if legal issues need to be followed beyond the current email. Gnangarra 05:59, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
I would like register my opposition to Citizendium unethic exploit of Wikipedia Project work.Wen Hsing 20:36, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Just to let you guys know, there is a process on Citizendium for giving attribution to Wikipedia (a special template I think). People just forget sometimes, just like editors do here, when they end up plagiarizing. It's certainly not uncommon, and you are just as responsible for that as Citizendium is for their violations. So don't be hypocritical and arrogant, okay? It's never fun.

And if you really want to talk about GFDL violations, just look at Wikipedia:Oversight. 67.86.86.217 04:12, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

  • Oversight is suppose to be used on edits that does not contribute to the latest result: if somebody inserted a personal info into an article and the info was removed it is obviously not a violation of the copyright to delete the intermediate version with the info. Deletion versions that do significantly contribute to the latest version is indeed a GFDL violation but it sort of defeat the purpose of oversight, is not it?
  • Is it true the Citizendium use GFDL sources (like wiki) and make them non-free specifically to hinder the free software development? If it is so it is morally and probably legally wrong. Alex Bakharev 04:39, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Alternative Paradigm Wikipedia

Dear Jimbo,

I would love to hear your ideas on the following:

Wikipedia is an excellent base for knowledge. That is: generally accepted knowledge. However, it fails misarably in cases where the generally accepted knowledge or paradigm happens to be false — or, might be false. Imagine wikipedia existing in the era when the Earth was still flat. Wikipedia would than ridicule or delete any articles which would describe the Earth as a sphere orbiting the Sun.

I understand that this is a choice wikipedia had to make: the dominant paradigm rules, as this is the one that has "reliable" sources etc. But I also think Humanity would be served with a wikipedia in which the underdog-paradigm can be explained. Without fear of being wrong. Simply reflecting the opinions and knowledge of large numbers of people, even when it is "only" indigenous knowledge or "common knowledge" and is NOT supported by mainstream "knowledge".

How would it be for you to have something like: alt.wikipedia.org Or, if we do not even use the wikipedia name, something else, e.g. alt.fringepedia.org or something like that.

With love, and gratitude for your projects,

— Xiutwel (talk) 18:35, 27 March 2007 (UTC)
the Netherlands
This seems more suited to being on wikia, it doesn't really fit under wikipedia at all -- febtalk 22:26, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Dear Feba,

thank you for your suggestion. It helps me to get more clear for myself what I want. Wikia is not what I am looking for. I want something which is encyclopedic, but which is also free in the sense that a certain modesty prevails, in stead of a dominant paradigm which tries to exclude or ridicule all knowlegde and all viewpoints which do not align with it. — Xiutwel (talk) 10:35, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

I believe such alternative project existing already current, it is called Encyclopedia Dramatica, however it is many large problem. I try to read and correct inaccuracy but I am misunderstanding and ineffectual. I am offend by the article concerning China on this Encyclopedia Dramatica project. Information technology countermeasures may be only likely method of correction of defamatory and racist remark.Wen Hsing 20:43, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Nice work

I saw you on the Sunday program this morning. You spoke well, especially on Essjay. I was confused though as to what you were wearing? An interesting item of clothing.

Also, wishing you a Happy April Fools Day! and as much fun as this crap line of coding can bring. Cheers, Dfrg.msc 01:22, 1 April 2007 (UTC)



Aaack, no blinking! I missed it by about 10 minutes myself. On another note, the Sunday Age is apparently running a story about how Wikipedia deals with April fools. I'll poke around the website for it. And Jimbo: Your shoelaces are untied. --Michael Billington (talk) 02:31, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, you recovered well from the Bernard Fanning thing, which could have been a lot worse if you got nervous. Nice work. Rothery 05:26, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
I was wearing interesting clothing? Really? Didn't mean to be doing that, but then again I am a pretty ridiculous person all in all so there is no telling. Can you tell me more about it?--Jimbo Wales 12:18, 1 April 2007 (UTC)
Here's the link to the Sunday program interview: http://sunday.ninemsn.com.au/sunday/feature_stories/article_2167.asp FNMF 00:31, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
Well, to elaborate on my comments about your interesting wardrobe choice, if I can recall correctly, you were wearing a collared black thing, with red stripes that came up to your neck. I understand you were in Tokyo at the time, but Australian audiences are more accustomed to a singlet and thongs combo. People on television in Australia are frequently naked from the waist down. Politicians and people of influence especially. You have to accessorise Jimbo! Also, you looked a little bit tired and worn out. Are you sleeping alright? Anyway, I doesn't matter, you fought off that well but next time I want to see you wearing nothing but a traffic cone. Cheers! Dfrg.msc 07:27, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Systemic bias in Wikipedia

Pls check images there on Muhammad page and the images were not there last year on the same page, aren't we annoying/turning away Muslim Wikipedians and also aren't we creating physological barrier for them to come on board. If this can annoy a Hindu Wikipedian like me then think of how it will play on minds of Muslim Wikipedian. Also check titles of some pages like Alexander the Great and quoting this another page is titled as Ashoka the Great. Isn't this a blatant systemic bias and this could hamper growth of Wikipedia in third world countries and I along with many other secular/neutral Wikipedian will be saddened. This issue is identified by some Wikipedians hence there is a project for the same, check Wikipedia:WikiProject_Countering_systemic_bias#The_origins_of_bias.

One way to counter systemic bias is by empowering active Wikipedians say by introducing point system and anybody above a certain threshold can have some say in say dispute resolution/locking/unlocking/admin selection/admin removal etc.

Your views pls. Vjdchauhan 18:44, 1 April 2007 (UTC). (Don't go by the 1'st April date, its a serious issue and am concerned)

Actually that particular issue has been through extensive mediation and many editors participated. DurovaCharge! 12:55, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
But since the issue persists that means mediation failed and systemic bias persisted. Vjdchauhan 18:28, 2 April 2007 (UTC).
The systemic bias of which you speak, Vjdchauhan, is encoded in WP:NPOV and WP:NOT#Wikipedia is not censored. In many regions of the world, one is expected to speak of Muhammad only with extreme reverence and appending honorifics to every mention of his name, just as it is to disallow depictions of him. To treat him neutrally, then, as any other historical figure, constitutes bias against the cultures of those regions. Such "bias" is, as they say, a feature, not a bug.Proabivouac 19:48, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
This is not a valid excuse/explanation, anyway it was for consumption of Jimbo Wales only. Thanks. Vjdchauhan 22:36, 2 April 2007 (UTC).

Just wondering

With all of the things you have going on, how often do you check this page for messages? The ikiroid (talk·desk·Advise me) 01:47, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Quite often I imagine, he just doesn't respond to many of them. --Deskana (ya rly) 20:42, 2 April 2007 (UTC)


A request

Could ypu please change the rules and let Wikipedia comment on speculation? Thanks. Mike J FOX 03:00, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

What is justification for allow unverify speculation, rumour and dissident propaganda? It is a strength of Wikipedia Project that verify fact is requirement. Many speculation is made in personal blog.Wen Hsing 20:48, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Also, Jimbo rarely changes rules in his role as "benevolent dictator." Most rules are created/changed through community consensus. Mr.Z-mantalk¢Review! 22:48, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
Jimbo: Benevolence just got weirder. Dfrg.msc 06:40, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Argumentum ad Jimbonem in defense of name calling

I just wanted to let you know that an editor has cited your comments in regards to the removal of negative unsourced comments about a living person. The comments in question: "Basically a self-confessed mud-slinging bullshit merchant throwing anything and everything at his pet hate." When this comment was removed, he insisted that doing so was the wrong thing to do per a comment you made: [26]. Just a heads up, feel free to respond or ignore. Thanks. --Minderbinder 21:12, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

My intent was never to defend someone who has made personal attacks about anyone, especially a WP:BLP, I was merely stating what I was told was the proper way to handle such attacks. In this particular case, the first part of the edit (on a talk page, BTW - not directly in an article) is actually from the subject's own words skeptic.com intro. The Wikipedia editor was apparently paraphrasing the same comments from that website - so there is indeed a source for the editor's opinion. I don't approve of the wording at all, but neither do I approve of how Milo handled the situation. Dreadlocke 21:48, 2 April 2007 (UTC) {revised for clarification} Dreadlocke 23:03, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
"self-confessed mud-slinging bullshit merchant" is a heck of a paraphrase. And yes, this comment was on a user talk page, I forgot to mention that. --Minderbinder 21:55, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
I believe that the commentary was really about how much of a reliable source could a website be that admits: "The Skeptic’s Dictionary does not try to present a balanced account of occult subjects....I hope that an occasional missile hits its mark." The skeptic.com website is used as a WP:RS throughout Wikipedia to present the "skeptic's" side of paranormal issues. The quote begs the question as to whether or not it should be used as a source at all. Dreadlocke 21:59, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
And the way to make that point is with name calling? --Minderbinder 22:03, 2 April 2007 (UTC)
I don't approve of the wording, but is it egregious enough to be considered a personal attack that violates WP:BLP and is something you should just be able to delete from the user's talk page, instead of politely asking the author to kindly rephrase, soften or just to remove it himself. That's the question here. Dreadlocke 22:34, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Milo, do not ever edit my comments! [27]. Dreadlocke 23:00, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

I did not edit your comments, I restored them to the version I responded to [28]. Don't edit your comments after other editors have replied, per WP:TALK. --Minderbinder 23:04, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

My apologies to Jimbo for this dispute being brought here like this. Dreadlocke 21:05, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Under most circumstances I would never bring an issue here, but it seemed appropriate because of the continued insistence "But Jimbo sez I'm right!!!" (not an exact quote) I think in most cases it's wisest to leave Jimbo out of discussions unless he chooses to participate himself. --Minderbinder 22:33, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Proposal for a review process for administrators

I have a made a proposal at the Village Pump here, arguing that rather than appointing administrators for an indefinite period, there should instead be an automatic review process for all administrators every year or two, run along the same lines as the original WP:RFA. Thus I'm not arguing for a time limit for administrators, but simply a more streamlined and effective mechanism of accountability. I believe this proposal will benefit good editors and Wikipedia. I hope you will take the time to examine the argument, and that you may look favourably upon the idea. Thanks. FNMF 08:57, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Perennial proposal --Kim Bruning 10:54, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
Yup. Please see WP:PEREN#Administrative. KillerChihuahua?!? 13:36, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
I can only say that a proposal which has been put before, even a proposal which has been put before and rejected, is not necessarily a bad proposal. And in this case its a good one. FNMF 14:17, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Self-explanatory.

Image:PARTY HARD!!!.gif

Yours truly, a cabalist. The Sky May Be 12:33, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

I took the liberty of linkifying the image, such rapid flashing might trigger photosensitive epilepsy in susceptible readers. --Sherool (talk) 14:55, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

NOT a democracy but we're polling?

Jimbo, your comments in support of the statement that "Wikipedia is not an experiment in democracy" have been cited by folks talking about "Polling is evil" when arguing against the utilization of polls on the project. Such language seems at odds with what you said regarding polls in this mail list message. This seems rather silly given the fact that everyone knows that polling is happening all the time on various aspects of both the project and articles. The page Wikipedia:Straw polls used to be a guideline and then for some reason it got derailed and was susequently tagged by User:Radiant! as {{historical}} whereupon I tagged it as an {{essay}}. While I realize that Wikipedia is not a democracy I also realize it is not a government and so like other non-governmental organizations it isn't surpring to see polling applied here. Given the frequency of polling that goes on on the project and the lack of a recognized guideline about that myself and other editors have decided to try to bring Wikipedia:Straw polls back up to guideline recognition but we're encountering resistance from "voting is evil" editors. Your recent WP:ATT "polling" commentary is very much in the air right now about this and so in that light could you possibly join the discussion (as an editor) over on Wikipedia talk:Straw polls about this? Thanks. (Netscott) 18:50, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Opinion poll/ survey, not majority vote. People confuse the two constantly. --Kim Bruning 19:03, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
I suggest that the necessity of this StrawPoll has nothing to do with Jimbo. In my opinion, an empirical measure of "consensus," such as in this StrawPoll is crucial to avoid the destructiveness of faction, as exemplified by the false claims of "consensus" for the so-called "merger" to WP:ATT. Without a StrawPoll or some other empirical measure of "consensus" the editors just edit war to the last person standing who just happens to be there at the time over whether or not there is a "consensus." But, of course, this is just my comment in this short StrawPoll that you so wisely opened here with your question.  :)) --Rednblu 19:18, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
Wikipedia is not a democracy. Wikipedia is also not not a democracy. To say the site is not democratic shouldn't be confused with a rejection of polling in general ("polling is evil" is an unhealthy meme—polls are useful, not evil, but very hard to conduct in dynamic net circumstances). Wikipedia utilizes democratic tools (polls), bureaucratic tools (adminship), and sometimes dictatorial tools (Jimbo's interventions). It is all and none of the above and it works, more or less. Despite the shouting, a poll was needed for ATT and Jimbo was right in suggesting one. Marskell 20:25, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
"Polls Considered Harmful?" ;-) Well... yes and no. They can and have been atrociously abused in the past, to the point where some people think it might be better to never allow them at all. I think there are limited conditions where opinion polls can be quite useful, but only when applied in a conscientious manner. --Kim Bruning 21:50, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

International Symbol of Access and licensing

I apologize for asking this here, but I believe that this is the only place that it can be brought up, since it was you that made the decision to not allow "with permission" licenses. I also apologize for reposting this; unless I missed it, you did not give any indication that you had read it. Here's the issue: the International Symbol of Access (that wheelchair logo you see everywhere) is copyrighted. Its conditions of use essentially make it a "with-permission" image; the only place where fair use applies is on the International Symbol of Access article itself. At Wikipedia talk:Fair use#The wheelchair logo is copyrighted; what should we use instead? I discussed this with other users, and made a free replacement - Wheelchair.svg - that the uses of the copyrighted symbol have been replaced with. I do agree, however, with many of the people that commented that this seems pretty silly: the symbol is an international standard that people recognize. Can you please offer your view either here or at Wikipedia talk:Fair use#The wheelchair logo is copyrighted; what should we use instead?, or at least indicate that you have seen this and are OK with status quo? Thank you. --NE2 01:19, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

If you will lead a quick project for people to compose an email to the people who own the copyright, I will be happy to email it to them under my name, asking them to release the logo under a modern free license. It seems likely that they would be happy to do that. Where are people wanting to use it at Wikipedia, though, other than places where fair use would work fine? --Jimbo Wales 02:01, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Thank you for responding. I don't think our fair use policies would apply here: the image is "replaceable" (as has been done), and every use of it would require a rationale on the image page. As for free licensing, I would assume that the ICTA thought about the issue in 1968 and decided to copyright it to ensure that it is not "misused". Trademark protection might provide the same effects, but I do not know whether it would have as much "teeth" and whether it is too late for them to register the trademark. The issue is that, unlike media companies, they have nothing to gain by releasing it under a free license for our use, and possibly a lot to lose if others start "abusing" that license to mark non-accessible things with the symbol. If you think about it from their point of view, we can already use the image; it is just our policies that prevent us from doing so, and they have no reason to change their license for our benefit. --NE2 05:06, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
The ISA is used in Template:Infobox Disney ride as a simple, effective way to indicate that a ride is handicapped-accessible. NE2 has a point — the ITC ICTA may not want to release this image under a free license and risk abuse. —Remember the dot (talk) 03:26, 25 March 2007 (UTC)

1968 is a long time ago, though.--Jimbo Wales 13:09, 20 March 2007 (UTC)

So is 1928, but I don't think we'll have any luck there. So can you clarify your position with respect to the current license and the replacement? Thank you. --NE2 00:40, 21 March 2007 (UTC)

Here is a message I received from Tivedshambo regarding this issue:

"Hi. With regards to your changes to various railway line articles, I was wondering why you have replaced the official International Symbol of Access with the current rather crudely drawn wheelchair symbol. The official symbol may be used within the terms of its copyright for uses defined in International Symbol of Access, including "Indicating an accessible transit station or vehicle". Furthermore, I have worked with people with disabilities in the past, and have found that badly thought-out or stereotyped signs, no matter how well intentioned, can often cause offence, [sic] and therefore the most prudent option is to stick to official symbols."

I have researched this and the symbol's copyright is simply to prevent misuse of the symbol. Using the symbol here on Wikipedia to note accessible rail stations is perfectly ok. I uploaded a new image (Image:isa.svg) and its fair use detail are listed there. I also changed {{access icon}} to include the new symbol I uploaded. –Crashintome4196 07:22, 26 March 2007 (UTC)

"Using the symbol here on Wikipedia to note accessible rail stations is perfectly ok". Don't seek sanctuary in the law. If we can do with free material, why would we do with unfree? --Abu badali (talk) 15:25, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
Because the 'free' alternative is unfamiliar, potentially confusing, and possibly offensive, while the official symbol is clear, attractive, designed for the purpose, and permitted in this application. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 15:43, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
I would still use a free alternative even when a better unfree one is available. The free alternative has only to be good enough, and I believe this is the case. --Abu badali (talk) 16:33, 29 March 2007 (UTC)
I heartily disagree. I hope to resolve this issue once and for all at Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)#Use of international wheelchair symbol. —Remember the dot (talk) 05:09, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Jimbo, I understand you feel that under current licensing policies this logo is not usable within wikipedia. If this is the case, then I think I should remove the wikipedia logo from Template:InterWiki, should i not? The wikipedia logo is not under a free license, and as such may only be used under WP:FU (our only EDP atm). Usage like in this template however are not allowed, because they are only used as "visual cue"s to links on pages not directly associated to wikipedia... And yes, I'm making a point here: I think not allowing the use of an ISA symbol is simply stupid, and the use of a derivative work of the ISA symbol (which also violates the licensing terms of the symbol's usage) is even more stupid, and not allowing use of this symbol while not freely licensing our own logo and still alowing THAT to be used is hypocritical. --TheDJ (talkcontribsWikiProject Television) 19:38, 4 April 2007 (UTC)

As you seem uncomfortable with the suggested free alternative image, have you considered using free text to indicate taht something is "handicapped-accessible"? Like "**accessible**".
What makes me uncomfortable is to use unfree material for a task that could be fulfilled with free material. --Abu badali (talk) 19:51, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, i did consider that, but i don't see the point, it's an internationally used and widely recognised logo, much more so that the english language textual respresention of the logo.
It's also why i'm making the point of the wikipedia logo, which is also not freely licensed, but used troughout the entire encyclopedia in templates such as mentioned above. The wikipedia logo is not an exemption per our current EDP in en.wikipedia, and as such should be removed from those templates, because we can also say it in words !!!! Cause words are GOOD, and images are BAD. this is just wikibureaucracy that goes way beyond the original intention of the ideas. And the fact that the foundation set these rules, makes the whole subject even more bureaucratic. Se also bottom section of: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28policy%29#Q_.26_A

--TheDJ (talkcontribsWikiProject Television) 19:58, 4 April 2007 (UTC)