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A request for arbitration is the last step of dispute resolution for conduct disputes on Wikipedia. The Arbitration Committee considers requests to open new cases and review previous decisions. The entire process is governed by the arbitration policy. For information about requesting arbitration, and how cases are accepted and dealt with, please see guide to arbitration.

Please make your request in the appropriate section:


Requests for arbitration

America: Imagine the World Without Her

Initiated by Casprings (talk) at 14:13, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Involved parties

Confirmation that all parties are aware of the request
Confirmation that other steps in dispute resolution have been tried

Statement by Casprings

The conflict has been ongoing for months and shows ongoing WP:Battle.[] [1]. Moreover, there are edit wars everytime the article comes off being protected. [2][3][4] The basic dispute involves the WP:Weight of certain content. That said, this has been ongoing for months and the behavior on the page indicates this is mainly a behavior problem and cannot be resolved by working though the dispute resolution process.

@Courcelles, DeltaQuad, Thryduulf: I brought this here because of behavior. If I need to directly name editors in my statement, I will. I think the problem is mainly user:VictorD7's WP:BATTLE mentality and those editors (i.e. User:Collect and User:Arzel) who have supported this mentality. Victor has been on this particular article and pushing it towards a favorable/right wing view of the movie for month. This can be seen by simply looking at some of the old archive thread. They contain multiple times he did not WP:AGF and is hostile towards other editors.

Each time the article is unprotected, Victor starts to push is own content. He has been sitting on this article pushing WP:POV for month, has done long term WP:editwarring to get his way, and has been hostile to other editors in getting his way. Moreover, he isn't shy about his purpose or rational for being involved in the article. As he says: "Yeah, it comes down to numbers and persistence, which is why all the numbers and persistence we can get counts." [5]

In sum, this is a behavior problem. It cannot be handled at WP:AN because his supporters will defend him on any thread started on Victor. If this is to be handled, it will have to be handled here.Casprings (talk) 04:07, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

@Courcelles, DeltaQuad, Thryduulf: User:VictorD7 also has made some comments about the behavior of myself and others. I would suggest that you have two sides, each seeing each others behavior as problematic, and a conflict that has been ongoing for months. This is the sort of conflict that that is ongoing and difficult to solve that the committee was created for.Casprings (talk) 21:35, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

@Courcelles, DeltaQuad, Thryduulf, Seraphimblade: I requested this case because there has been a long history of

editing waring: Quote: [6], [7], [8], [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16]

Score [17], [18] [19], [20] [21] [22] [23] [24]

POV Pushing(Contains some edit waring): [25], [26], [27] [28] [29], [30],[31] [32] [33] [34] [35], [36] [37] [38] [39] [40] [41] [42] [43], [44] [45] [46] [47] [48] [49][50] [51] [52] [53]

And Attacking others on the talk page [54] [55] [56] [57]

Statement by Gamaliel

My feeling at this time is that I really want nothing more to do with this article and I would like to disengage from this conflict, as I have attempted to do so. I feel that the nature of this conflict, its duration (6 months or more), the lack of signficiant unbiased community input aside from User:Erik, and the constant belligerence of an SPA who has camped out at the article, and the arrival of Wikipedia's resident political warriors has caused an impossible situation and has caused a number of editors, most definitely including myself, to act in ways that they should be ashamed of. At this time, I feel like all the editors listed above except User:Erik should disengage. Whether or not the Committee should take this case, I have no idea. Gamaliel (talk) 17:35, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Per Courcelles, policy issues that the Committee could consider in this case.

  • WP:RS: What qualifies as a reliable source? A number of editors, including myself, have pointed to the requirement for "sources with a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy" and noted that Breitbart has a well-documented reputation for the opposite, bringing up repeated instances of egregious errors and deliberate falsifications on the part of both the publication and the author of one of the Brietbart articles in particular. Other editors have contended that the fact that Breitbart has an editorial structure and people with the title of journalist is sufficient to quality as an RS.
  • WP:AGF: Editors should not be allowed to repeatedly accuse other editors of a biased agenda or of WP:IDONTLIKEIT when those editors raise policy-based objections.
  • WP:UNDUE: Is it appropriate to cite a questionable source three times in this article? Is this unduly elevating a fringe source? Should, as some editors have advocated, this fringe source be included three times because mainstream sources allegedly have a political bias against the nature of the film?
  • The proper use of an RFC. Several RFCs have been held regarding whether or not Breitbart can be used as a source for its own opinion and have been closed in the affirmative. Is this a mandate that Breitbart should and must be included in the article regardless of considerations of undue weight, elevating fringe viewpoints, and POV?
  • When is consensus achieved? Should contentious material remain in the article while it is under discussion on the talk page? Is it edit warring to keep this material in the article or is it edit warring to remove it until consensus is achieved on the talk page? Is a consensus required before such contentious material is removed?
  • WP:OWN and WP:SPA.

Gamaliel (talk) 19:37, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Also, I wanted to say that I'm really not sure how I keep finding myself in the middle of protracted drama in the last six months. I really need to go back to writing articles about low drama topics like deceased librarians, apparently. Gamaliel (talk) 20:06, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

"There are none because, for the most part, the involved editors are well behaved". Srich32977 does not recall the same article I recall, nor does he apparently recall when he and I collaborated heavily on talk and via email attempting to curb conflicts and hat contentious discussions on the talk page and deal with one troublesome editor in particular. Why he now dismisses behavior he once thought was troublesome I have no idea. Gamaliel (talk) 20:44, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Steelbeard1

While I am no longer involved in this article because of the constant edit warring, my issue has to do with the inclusion of biased and unreliable sources such as Breitbart which is infamous for editing news stories to fit their biases and change the context of the material. Breitbart citations should never be allowed in Wikipedia articles. Steelbeard1 (talk) 17:58, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Erik

I came across the article a couple of months ago when I saw a discussion that indicated that individual film reviews should be left out of the article. I found this questionable and have since become involved. I have expanded the article from 13 kb to 57 kb so the article could be more well-rounded. The biggest debate to date has been whether or not to reference, a conservative website, to state that professional film critics panned the documentary because they were liberally biased. Concerns about referencing at all were also raised (since the website is also referenced in two other places in the article body). I disengaged from editing over the liberal-critics claim, but edit warring has taken place essentially to combat the wrong version, and I requested for page protection three times to halt this animosity. (I was fine with including the liberal-critics claim because I offset it with many details from a variety of mainstream sources but did not forcefully edit to include it.) The RfC about the claim recently closed with the outcome of including it. Now I think the focus has shifted to other aspects of the article that I added, in particular the "Critical reception" and "Political commentary" sections. For the former, the talk page is being used to work out the proper balance of sampling reviews.

My concern going forward are mainstream sources (appropriate per WP:SOURCE) being challenged as "obviously" liberal and warranting being equally or near-equally offset by conservative commentary. For example, a current discussion is about stating in the lead section that film critics panned the film, and the push is to follow that with conservative commentators claiming the critics were liberally biased. I argued that this was a false balance because there is not "sufficient detail" (per WP:DUE) in the lead section about the majority view (the straightforward assessment of critics panning the film) when presented beside the minority view (questioning the credibility of these critics). The "Critical reception" section is sufficiently detailed about the majority viewpoint to offset the brief liberal-critics claim; readers can see specifically how reviews like those from Variety and The Hollywood Reporter analyze the film. There may be other issues that come up with the "Political commentary" section, which is a somewhat novel structure to try to fold specific political statements under certain sub-topics, such as the "Alinsky" sub-section where the National Review says Alinsky's background was worth mining, and the National Journal finds Alinsky's connection to Obama too conflated. The balance of statements in this section may be a challenge since this topic is a narrow one with mostly "newsy" sources and being too new to have any retrospective, critical analyses yet (if at all). Erik (talk | contrib) (ping me) 19:10, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Thargor Orlando

My involvement basically begins and ends with a comment or two on the RFC. Putting aside the content issue, if there's a way for ArbCom to simply, via motion, put the article under discretionary sanctions or something similar, that might just be able to solve the issue without having to go through an entire case. The behavior issues are on the line, but some sort of more significant oversight with teeth might be the solution.

Statement by Srich32977

As filing party says "The basic dispute involves the WP:Weight of certain content." That said, where are the administrative actions (blocks, warnings, scoldings, etc.) taken to enforce proper editor behavior? There are none because, for the most part, the involved editors are well behaved. Accordingly this request is outside the purview of Arbcom. – S. Rich (talk) 20:29, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Various editors may have been troublesome to other editors because of their persistence or because there is a basic disagreement, but no editor in the list has had a block imposed because of disruptive behavior in connection with the article or article talk page or other user talk pages. (Hence my comment "for the most part" about their behavior.) I do not see where the WP:DRN was ever invoked to resolve the content issues. As I believe the Arbcom will decline this case, editors might take some time to bone up on how the DRN works. Really, the Breitbart issue is a small content dispute best resolved elsewhere. – S. Rich (talk) 23:44, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Obsidi

I believe this is mostly a content dispute and as such inappropriate for ArbCom at this time. We had an RfC on the inclusion of Breitbart as a reliable source for its opinions on this movie and it was resolved by the community in the affirmative. It would be inappropriate for ArbCom to overrule the community on a content decision like that. The current dispute over the Shapiro quote was added on November 5th 2014. Gamaliel reverted with WP:JUSTAPOLICY, it was added back in, Gamaliel reverted with a link to a monkey video and then self-reverted. No one else removed the quote or even discussed doing so on the talk page for a month. It became the consensus decision at least at that time. Many of the recent “editwars” have been people trying to change that consensus and remove the quote (I have not edited mainspace at all on this page). The page is currently locked at the most recent consensus, as it should be while there were recent editwars. I would like to get the page unlocked, without the ongoing editwar if there was a way to resolve that quickly (maybe just a motion that the current page represents the most recent consensus, so people need to reach a new one before changing the Shapiro quote). Do we really want ArbCom issuing decisions as to if this particular quote on this particular page is undue?

I would like to know, what “deliberate falsifications” that Gamaliel is accusing Brietbart of? There is no doubt that Brietbart has, at times, posted things without sufficiently double-checking the accuracy of their source. They are hardly the only media organization to do so over the same time period (many of which are and should be considered reliable sources), such as, 60 Minutes, New York Post, Rolling Stone, AP, NBC and CBS, Globe and Mail, Washington Post, Fox News, CNBC, New York Times, Washington Post. To error is to be human, but that is far different from an accusation of “deliberate falsifications.” The Sherrod case is currently an ongoing lawsuit that has not been resolved. In the ACORN undercover sting only elected Democrats have accused Brietbart of editing out of context (even the New York Times said “the most damning words match the transcripts and the audio, and do not seem out of context”). Paul Krugman’s bankruptcy was clearly incorrect, but it was citing a Boston Globe article (which I believe we consider to be a reliable source, hardly the first to get a story wrong relying on another media outlet). That leaves the “Friend of Hamas” story in which Ben Shapiro said “When people make corrections or find things that I do wrong, it doesn’t upset me. It urges me to do better.” [58] And the misidentification of Loretta Lynch (wrong lawyer with the same name), which Breitbart removed the erroneous article (hardly the first news organization to misidentify someone with the same name such as ABC). I’m not suggesting that these other news organizations are not doing their best to try to present an accurate story, but mistakes happen in all journalism. Breitbart issues corrections and attempts to find the accuracy of their sources like all other media outlets, and sometimes, like other media outlets, it makes mistakes. That said, even if Breitbart is a questionable source, it can be a source for its own opinions that do not relate to third parties, that is what the RfC appropriately resolved in this case.

Statement by TheRedPenOfDoom

This is mostly a content issue spurred on by several poorly worded RfCs whose results have been pushed beyond the actual consensus of the RfC.

And while even the most prestigious news organizations have occasional failures in their long history and wide publication range, those errors stand out because such errors are unusual for those publications. with breitbarts short history and narrow range, the multiple errors are what the publication has a reputation for. [59] -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 11:41, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by VictorD7

This accusation is an attempt by Casprings to wage a content dispute by other means. He filed this immediately after his request for content mediation was rejected (though I had personally agreed to participate as a show of good faith, only to now be rewarded with this). It's unclear how he chose the parties list, as it excludes some key long term participants he politically opposes and includes some he's politically aligned with who have barely if it all participated. He incredibly accuses Collect by name but fails to even list him as a party. This request should be rejected outright. The article was remarkably stable for a while until, as has already been laid out, Gamaliel and a couple of other editors sought to remove by then long standing material against opposition by multiple editors (e.g. [60], [61], [62], [63]). The edit warring resulted from a difference of opinion over what the most recent consensus version was. But since then with yet another RFC close rejecting the arguments against the source, Gamaliel announcing his disengagement, and the current warning by the page protecting admin not to resume reverting without "unambiguous consensus" or "blocks will be forthcoming", the edit warring is already almost certainly over. Civil discussion on various content matters has continued in recent weeks between Erik, me, and others on the talk page, and should be how things continue to progress moving forward.

I totally reject the accusations against me by Casprings. I have always edited for neutrality, while he, Gamaliel, and a couple of others have been editing with dogged, uncompromising tendentiousness on the article for months, trying to purge political views they disagree with at every turn while failing to apply the same standards to material they politically favor (even putting it in themselves), skewing the article as negative as they could, resulting at times in it being warped into a laughably one sided propaganda page. Casprings' quote above was pulled from my own talk page last July and was said in the context of trying to figure out how to deal with such a small but determined group of tendentious, partisan editors.

My solution, following standard suggested Wikipedia practice, was to draw in views from the outside community. I initiated an RFC that found the source they were most opposing at that time, Breitbart, reliable/acceptable. Later Collect was forced to start the RFC mentioned earlier for a different segment referenced by the same source, with the same result. Both RFCs were properly worded to address the policy objections being cited to oppose the segments. A third RFC, started by Casprings and seeking removal of Breitbart, saw a majority of respondents oppose removal and was retracted by him. That I and what Casprings refers to as my "supporters" are the ones editing reasonably and for neutrality is evidenced by the wider community repeatedly supporting our positions while rejecting his arguments.

I have also already debunked Gamaliel's accusation that I'm a "SPA" (single purpose account). I'm not a full time Wikipedian with tens of thousands of posts, but was established for two years before ever visiting this film article, with edits on numerous diverse pages, and have recently resumed posting more on different articles. Repeating his false personal attack is disruptive, but if he's serious about disengaging I'm not inclined to make a big deal about it. VictorD7 (talk) 21:05, 28 January 2015 (UTC) Updated reply to Caspring's latest comment about both sides seeing bad behavior in the other: Except my solution was to involve the wider editing community, not burden Arbcom with a frivolous, now resolved content dispute. We're only here because none of those RFCs went your way. No, this is not what Arbcom is for. VictorD7 (talk) 21:54, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by {Non-party}

Other editors are free to make relevant comments on this request as necessary. Comments here should address why or why not the Committee should accept the case request or provide additional information.

Clerk notes

This area is used for notes by the clerks (including clerk recusals).

America: Imagine the World Without Her: Arbitrators' opinion on hearing this matter <0/1/0/5>

Vote key: (Accept/decline/recuse/other)

  • Awaiting more statements. I'd like to see statements specifically addressing, given we cannot decide content, how a case would improve the general conduct and editing environment. Courcelles 17:47, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Awaiting statements per Courcelles. -- DQ (ʞlɐʇ) 17:48, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Awaiting focused statements. I note that while there have been additional comments since my colleagues voted, there is little addressing how a case would improve the conduct here. This does seem to be essentially a content dispute (or a series of them) and I'm not seeing anything about specific editors preventing resolutions, so it is not obvious what a case would achieve. Last year's American Politics case did provide that "[A]ny new areas of conflict which involve contemporary American political and social issues may be placed under standard discretionary sanctions by the Committee without the need for a full case.", and while this does squarely fit within the relevant topic area, I'm not seeing in what has been so-far presented above much that convinces me discretionary sanctions would help here. What specific behaviour by which specific editors is the reason this dispute has been so protracted? Thryduulf (talk) 01:29, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
  • So far, I see this as the sort of question which is best handled definitively by WP:RSN, which can deal with the actual issues, while we can deal only with the peripheral conduct. DGG ( talk ) 08:46, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Decline given the lack of clear evidence that this is within our remit. Dougweller (talk) 16:22, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I don't really see what we're being asked to do here, and the matter looks to be largely content rather than conduct related. Leaning decline unless someone can indicate much more clearly why arbitration is required here. Seraphimblade Talk to me 05:51, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

Requests for clarification and amendment

Amendment request: Ryulong

Initiated byMythdon at 21:36, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Case affected 
Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Ryulong
Clauses to which an amendment is requested
  1. Remedy "Mythdon further restricted"
List of users affected by or involved in this amendment
Information about amendment request
  • Lift the new remedies and enforcement concerning verifiability and reliable sources at this remedy

Statement by Mythdon

I am requesting an amendment concerning the restriction barring me from verifiablity/reliable sources that came as a result of this clarification and this discussion

This restriction came as the result of me having unwilling to produce guideline for tokusatsu articles as outlined in the decision at the closure of the case while persisting in the behavior that led to various urges to seek outside input and work more collaboratively of my views regarding verifiability. There not long after I received a topic ban from Tokusatsu/Ryulong after this enforcement of the gratitious mention I made of Ryulong

I have not edited the tokusatsu articles since my unblock given as I held myself to voluntary restriction from editing the topic area

The edits I make these days include contributing to the articles I have interest including television stations and The Sims and making minor corrections to errors in articles like spelling and grammer and vandal fighting. I realize my activity has gone down a bunch since my unblock with having let go of all the old habits and old behaviors that led to my September 2009 banning which six months later when I repeated my habits I was blocked indef. My edits gone down a bit since my unblock and I go into spurts of being active and then inactive and then active again

Having no longer any interest to edit the topic area as I outgrew the subject area and having held myself to the voluntary restriction for the security of allowing myself get over the emotional attachment to the articles and to force myself to be productive in other areas. I had been asked and advised by various editors to go find other topic areas to edit while I was editing the topic area and honestly I can say I never made one positive contribution to the topic area but since my unblock I have made productive contributions to other topic areas with referenced content. I have been stumped on what to do about the situation about me being restricted commenting on reliable sources as on one hand I feel it be wrong to only return to the topic area as part of a process pertaining to a remedy but on the other hand if I have nothing to offer the topic area then I think if I just learned from the behavior that led to it that I can make things a fresh start in other topic areas and a new opportunity to avoid the confrontations and behaviors that led my past sanctions

But having learned from the behavior that led to it from my strict interpretations of policy and failing to collaborate with others about my stances and refusing to produce a guideline, what I am requesting is to lift the no commenting on verifiablity and reliable sources sanctions. I have been watching over the topic area even though I no longer edit it and none of the arguments that occurred that led to the guideline remedy are happening as most of those disputes during the time I edited was by a certain editor (myself) doing whatever he could to get the topic area to where he saw fit as most of the never ending disputes were initiated by myself. So the way I see it is this restrictions purpose has been served in having learned from the behavior and its been five years and a lot of the topic areas problems left when I was topic banned and is now only moot as if I were to source an article I would not be allowed to discuss it if an editor were to question my edits

If the sanction should be lifted I will promise to avoid any behavior that led to the sanctions and urges on verifiability and will work more toward an effort to collaborate on verifiablity and to let go of the old strict interpreations of policies including verifiablity which I already no longer am hung up on strict disruptive intepretation of policy. But if the arbcom decision should be that I return to the topic area to help produce a guideline then thats what I will do. Most of the arbs that were arbs at the time this was put in place are no longer arbs and I recommend all arbs take a look at the case before coming to any decision. I will be bound by any result the arbcom should come of this. Thank you for taking the time to read. —Mythdon 21:36, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Comment by uninvolved Ncmvocalist

I know much of this case from start to finish, and there is a long history so there will no doubt be some uncertainty regarding what happened here. To bring some context to this, after the original case remedies were enacted Mythdon had initiated a significant number of "clarification/amendment" requests (brace yourself as there's a bit to read in each: [64] [65] [66] [67] [68] [69] [70]). The third request/diff is the discussion where this restriction was imposed by way of motion, and his last request is found in the last diff where the site ban in 2009 was imposed. I understand Mythdon appealed to the committee but ultimately his 2012 appeal was directed to the community. The appeal was successful (the community agreed to lift the site ban).


  • I don't oppose this appeal to lift the further restriction, despite an initial reservation regarding the obvious timing of this appeal. He seems genuine in his intention to abide by his promise that we will no longer see the previous disruptive conduct he exhibited (such as tendentious editing, harassment, treating Wikipedia as a bureaucracy, etc.) which brought about the remedies + further restrictions in this case.
  • I think there should be explicit mention on the case page that if the same problematic conduct issues arise, it should be brought back to the committee to deal with swiftly. I don't think it would be appropriate for dispute resolution to have to start from the bottom if issues persist.
    • 5 years, 5 months & 28 days ago is not really the way to look at the duration. Even though the restriction was imposed in August 2009, he was site banned from September 2009 to just before December 2012, so it was only really in place from 2013 - though that isn't much to go on seeing Mythdon made just 85 edits during the entirety of 2013, most of which were over just 3 days in July. So we are then looking at 349 edits from 2014, most of which were during May and June 2014. If that's the sort of irregular activity we can expect, maybe it won't be an issue - but I expect it will increase (seeing his edits were at 2500+ in 2009 and and 4000+ in 2010 when problems were constantly recurring).

I hope that assists somewhat anyway. Ncmvocalist (talk) 07:37, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Kurtis

I was around back when Mythdon was originally banned. At the time, he was known for being extremely terse, unfriendly, and overly concerned with trivialities. See his first RfA back in 2009 to get a sense of what I mean by that. But I don't think it's really relevant anymore, as he's clearly changed quite a bit. He has expressed a genuine understanding of where he went wrong, and as far as I can tell, there have been no problems since being unblocked.

This sanction serves no further purpose and should be lifted. Kurtis (talk) 09:20, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Clerk notes

This section is for administrative notes by the clerks (including clerk recusals).

Ryulong: Arbitrator views and discussion

  • That restriction predates my time on this Committee to the point that I'd never actually tried to parse it. And it is a doozy. I read it, and I'm not sure what the 2009 ArbCom was really trying to do, or what the end restriction actually is. (Example; "Mythdon is prohibited from making any comment on reliable sources or verifiability unless comments are made at the talk pages of those guidelines and policies". Is he banned from questioning the reliability of an individual source, or discussing those polices in the general case?) I'm not familiar with this user, but the clean block log since being unblocked in the fourth quarter of 2012 speaks positively. Courcelles 21:07, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
  • "5 years, 5 months, 28 days ago" - whew, that's a long time. I'd be interested in seeing any arguments against this. Dougweller (talk) 21:57, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
    • Support - my comment about the length of time reflected my opinion that that's enough time for someone to change their attitude. I agree with Ncmvocalist that there should be an "explicit mention on the case page that if the same problematic conduct issues arise, it should be brought back to the committee to deal with swiftly." Dougweller (talk) 11:41, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Inclined to support. Going to go through archives to determine what exactly they were going for first though. NativeForeigner Talk 07:50, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

Amendment request: Argentine History

Initiated by Cambalachero (talk) at 21:30, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Case affected 
Argentine History arbitration case (t) (ev / t) (w / t) (pd / t)
Clauses to which an amendment is requested
  1. Remedy 1
List of users affected by or involved in this amendment

Information about amendment request

Statement by Cambalachero

I am currently topic banned from articles that talk about Latin American history. As clarified here, the line between history and modern times in Argentina has been set in 1983 (end of the National Reorganization Process dictatorship, and restoration of democracy). The articles listed are the articles about the presidents of Argentina since 1983, and the Pope. As such, the bulk of their articles is/would be about their presidencies (or papacy), already within the allowed limits, and do not require any special exemption. However, the sections about their early lives and early careers usually need to explain the dictatorship and the dirty war, to provide the appropiate context. In other cases, the aftermath of the dirty war still sparked controversies in the national politics (see the dirty war article, sections "Truth commission, decrees revoked", "Continuing controversies" and "Repeal of Pardon Laws and renewal of prosecutions").

Have in mind that the original discussion that led to the case was about articles from the XIX century. Those small exemptions will not go anywhere near the original controversy.

In relation to modern Argentine events, I wrote the featured article 2013 Rosario gas explosion, helped to promote the articles Néstor Kirchner, Argentine legislative election, 2013 and 2012 Buenos Aires rail disaster to the "In the news" section of the main page. I also wrote new articles, featured in the DYK section, for 18A, 2012 cacerolazo in Argentina, 2012 fiscal austerity in Argentina, 2013 Buenos Aires train crash, Argentine quota law, Boudougate, Broad Front UNEN, Eduardo Arnold, Madero Center, Mario Poli, Periodismo para todos, Public image of Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, la Cámpora. Cambalachero (talk) 17:27, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

@DGG:: If an article about a modern controversy includes information about an unrelated historical one, I would consider it a coatrack article, needing to be fixed. An article must stay focused on its own topic. As for the limit, it's a limit established by the arbcom, to set which articles and topics are covered by the topic ban and which ones are not. Also this phenomenon you talk about is usually about issues that stay unresolved from one administration to the next, and so the media talks about both ones in relation to it. The phenomenon, however, only goes back for a limited time to the past. The media may talk about Bush when talking about issues of the Obama administration that started back then, but if some issue goes back up to Washington, Lincoln or other old historical times, its historical aspect is usually treated as trivia and dismissed from the news headlines, focusing instead on the most recent events related to said issue. Cambalachero (talk) 13:59, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
Add MarshalN20, the other user included in this topic ban, requested a precise clarification on the limits of the ban, which articles are included and which ones are not. It is archived at Wikipedia talk:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Argentine History#Request for amendment (December 2013), and it was agreed again by the Arbcom to set the time limit at December 1983. True, it was MarshalN20 who requested the amendment and it was only applied to him, but it's the same topic ban and it would be the same discussion. Cambalachero (talk) 15:19, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
Let's be less philosophical and focus more on tangible things. The article on Barack Obama is a featured one, and mentions George Bush, but does not mention George Washington or Abraham Lincoln anywhere. For similar reasons, a featured article of Cristina Kirchner would mention previous presidents but would not need to mention Manuel Belgrano or José de San Martín at all. There is a historical background for the gun control controversy, but there is no need to mention it in Obama's article, only the things related to gun control under his administration. Cambalachero (talk) 01:35, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
@Courcelles: The internet archives of online newspapers only go back up to a certain point, and the articles of current leaders (Pope Francis and Cristina Kirchner) are the most checked ones by casual readers, and thus the ones that should have priority in being as perfect as possible. I would follow the list mentioned in a backwards line, from Francis and Kirchner first to Alfonsín last. Incidentally, the list in said order would also go from the least involved with the dirty war to the most involved ones (the Kirchners were just mere students that left a city, and Francis did not hold any noteworthy religious rank; Alfonsín and Menem were active politicians at the time). Still, it may be easier and less time consuming to ask for this whole group a single time, rather than coming here several times to make similar requests for each new case. Cambalachero (talk) 21:34, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by MarshalN20

As a professional historian, I agree that it is difficult to draw a "line" between what is history and what is the present. Nonetheless, for the sake of understanding the subject, historians have (time and again) made these lines (they vary, of course, depending on the context and historian). ArbComm has also indeed drawn a line in this case.

Regardless of that, the purpose of ArbComm is to focus on user behavior. Cambalachero has conducted himself exceptionally, and has provided a series of positive contributions for the project since his topic ban (including a featured article). This positive behavior should be far more important for the committee's amendment decision than anything else.

Sincerely.--MarshalN20 Talk 15:50, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by {yet another user}

Clerk notes

This section is for administrative notes by the clerks (including clerk recusals).

Argentine History: Arbitrator views and discussion

  • As a purely preliminary comment, I am not sure that for any nation whatsoever, there is a clear separate between historical and current controversies. Current disputes tend to include the interpretation of historical examples. DGG ( talk ) 08:53, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
to use the US as an example, debates on current politics often refer back to the principles of US government as established in the 18th century; and much work on the writers of the Constitution is motivated by their implications for current events. See , for example, our article on Gun control. That's not coatrack, but , in the US, one of the possible and much-debated principles underlying constitutional interpretation. Nor, I think, has Europe forgotten World War II, or the third world the period of European imperialism. DGG ( talk ) 21:50, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
  • @Cambalachero:, I think this is reasonable enough. That said, I would be slightly more inclined to grant an exemption for those people more tangentially connected to the dictatorship... is there a subset of the articles you'd like to work on first? Courcelles 20:48, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
  • This seems a reasonable request. I would be inclined toward granting the standard exemption for these (articles, talk pages, pages related to FA review), revocable by an uninvolved admin in the event of misconduct. Seraphimblade Talk to me 03:15, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I'd rather either designate one admin that was willing to supervise, or say send it back to ArbCom for review if needed, rather than the open-endedness of any uninvolved admin. We've done the first two strategies. Not, to my memory, the any uninvolved admin route. If no one objects strongly, I'll throw up a motion tomorrow. Courcelles 03:48, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I'm pretty sure we've also done the latter, though I can't recall the details now and, speaking personally, I'd prefer to have any uninvolved administrator authorised to revoke the exemption (which, by the way, I too support). Salvio Let's talk about it! 10:18, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Although I sympathise with DGG's comments somewhat, I think we can do this. Not decided yet on which route to take about rovocing it if necessary, I need to see the pros and cons. Dougweller (talk) 11:37, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Motion (Argentine History)

For this motion there are 13 active arbitrators, not counting 2 who are inactive, so 7 support or oppose votes are a majority.
Notwithstanding other restrictions on their editing, Cambalachero is permitted to edit all content on the articles Raúl Alfonsín, Carlos Menem, Fernando de la Rúa, Adolfo Rodríguez Saá, Eduardo Duhalde, Néstor Kirchner, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and Pope Francis; as well as their talk pages. They may also make any edits reasonably necessary for those articles to go through the good article, peer review, or featured article processes. If, in the opinion of any uninvolved administrator, Cambalachero engages in misconduct in respect of any of these articles, this exemption may be temporarily revoked either in part or entirely by that administrator prior to referring the issues back to the Committee for review via an amendment request.
  1. As proposer. I think this strikes a balance between the various methods of revoking the exemption. Copyedit or change as desired. Courcelles 04:51, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  2. LFaraone 05:09, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  3. Seraphimblade Talk to me 05:48, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  4.  Roger Davies talk 06:11, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  5. NativeForeigner Talk 07:58, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  6. Dougweller (talk) 08:26, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  1. I support the exemption, but not the mandatory referral. If Cambalachero thinks the administrator in question has made a mistake, he can appeal to us. Demanding that the administrator ask us to confirm his decision is a waste of time (his and ours). Salvio Let's talk about it! 10:32, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  • Courcelles Support in principle though I'd like to suggest a clarification of our intent here:
    • From "This restriction may be withdrawn if there is misconduct by an uninvovled administrator, either for one page or for all of them. Any administrator who does so is required to open a amendment request for the Arbitration Committee's consideration."
    • To: "If, in the opinion of any uninvolved administrator, Cambalachero engages in misconduct in respect of any of these articles, this exemption may be temporarily revoked either in part or entirely by that administrator prior to referring the issues back to the Committee for review via a amendment request ."

       Roger Davies talk 05:32, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

      • That works, Roger Davies, but I think it needs just one more word to make it an imperative that the admin open the ARCA... Courcelles 05:51, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

Clarification request: Arbitration Enforcement sanction handling

Initiated by Ncmvocalist (talk) at 18:47, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

Case or decision affected
Arbitration Enforcement sanction handling arbitration case (t) (ev / t) (w / t) (pd / t) (principle 3.1.2 - Deliberate and careful use of discretionary sanctions in particular)

List of any users involved or directly affected, and confirmation that all are aware of the request:

Statement by uninvolved Ncmvocalist

My first request for clarification concerns the AC procedures - standard provision for appeals and modifications. In particular, the section entitled "Modification by administrators" in the following situation:

1A) An administrator X blocks an user for a period of time after reviewing a complaint alleging a breach of a topic ban (which was imposed as a case remedy). After the block has expired, administrator Y imposes another block of the same or a longer duration for the same complaint (and where there are no further breaches). Administrator Y did not obtain prior affirmative consent/agreement from administrator X, or at AN, AE, or here, for imposing the further block. Can the committee please confirm in those circumstances whether administrator Y's further block would be considered a modification of administrator X's block, and that such an action is unauthorised?

My second request for clarification concerns the AE sanction handling case (principle 3.1.2 - Deliberate and careful use of discretionary sanctions) in the following situation:

2A) An administrator X refuses to block an user after reviewing a complaint alleging a breach of a topic ban (which was imposed as a case remedy). Other administrators opine on the issue at AE and there appears to be division regarding the appropriateness of any block (and the appropriate duration for a block even if it is agreed). Administrator Y unilaterally imposes a block (where there is clearly no pressing need to), and did not obtain prior affirmative consent/agreement from administrator X, or at AN, AE, or here for imposing the block. If there is a division in opinion at AE regarding the appropriateness and duration of a block, has the committee indicated to its admins that they can unilaterally impose a block anyway? Does principle 3.1.2 only apply to discretionary sanctions? Or does that principle apply to requested enforcement of case remedies too?

I have listed 1A and 2A above only, as I may have a follow up under each. Thanks, Ncmvocalist (talk) 19:12, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

I think it's embarrassing that AE admins were responsible for attempting to derail this request into one about Eric Corbett (talk · contribs), when this request is really about (as the name of the case suggests): Arbitration Enforcement Sanction Handling. One of the main parties to that case was AE-active Sandstein (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA), and it's disappointing to note that Sandstein's problematic behavioural patterns seem to continue, and that too in the name of Arbcom.
The community elected the committee, not Sandstein. Even if for some bizarre reason you want Sandstein to remain entitled to keep up his repeated wikilawyering, his overly bureaucratic approach and his OWN tendencies at AE (be it as far as the noticeboard requests or actions he takes at those requests), I think the community is entitled to hear that from you directly, rather than his comments on arbitrators 'deliberate intentions'. Alternatively, if previous reminders or indications have not worked for him to change his approach to be more consistent with what is expected at all levels, maybe something else needs to be tried.
Even here, I am concerned that Sandstein appears to improperly suggest that:
  1. I am filing an appeal on behalf of a certain blocked user (Eric Corbett) but have concealed it in the form of this request;
  2. I've filed this request to circumvent the appeal procedure, and thereby game the system in relation to Eric Corbett's block; and
  3. I and several other users are (a) friends of Eric Corbett, and (b) therefore incapable of assessing when enforcement is appropriate and necessary.
For the avoidance of doubt, those suggestions are false accusations made in bad faith without a shred of evidence (except possibly the bit about "other users" being friends of Eric Corbett as I don't know how accurate that is. Still, Wikipedia is not a battlefield even for this type of thing.
I do wish the arbitrators would find a more effective way to tell Sandstein to cease engaging in such needlessly problematic conduct. Ncmvocalist (talk) 15:19, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
@Roger Davies: Correct me if I am wrong, but it seems to me you are saying principle 3.1 of the case only applies to discretionary sanctions, and does not apply at all to requests to enforce individual editor topic ban case remedies enacted by the committee. That is, in the 2A hypothetical, you are saying that even if uninvolved administrators (plural) opine and determine a breach of a topic ban in 2A is minor that it does not warrant a block (or that a block is going to be ineffective), it doesn't matter; any admin who wants to block and first imposes a block will have a supervote. Is that correct? And is that what you want/wanted? Ncmvocalist (talk) 15:48, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Risker (who was an arbitrator at the time of the case) has noted today that Roger Davies seems to have surprisingly forgotten why a certain principle was added in an older arbitration case. That appears to be happening in respect of the principle in this case also (and of course, I invite Risker to correct me if I'm wrong or provide more detail about the principle in this case, as she was also an arb when this principle 3.1 was unanimously passed with Roger's **unreserved** support). The principle says because of the priority given to enforcement of arb sanctions..."When it is not entirely clear whether a sanction is appropriate, or when an administrator knows that there is a division of opinion regarding whether a sanction is warranted, and there is no pressing need for immediate action, it may be best for an administrator to raise the issue in the discussion venue for Arbitration Enforcement and seek a consensus, rather than to act unilaterally." [emphasis added]
I'm pretty sure I've been patient and brought this up in a very reasonable way, given there were a lot of ways this could have otherwise been raised. I also did think the 2A situation has been expressed clearly in my comments here (indeed, Thryduulf's comment accurately summarises the situation I am seeking clarification in relation to, and what the principle intended to address). Unlike the example in Roger's comment which may have been contemplated in initial AE design, the situations like what I've described in 2A have gradually arisen in more recent years because of a few very specific AE active admin who have not got the message fully, or who are often being misguided (perhaps by users with their own agenda). Please effectively address it.
I can't even imagine how the case principle I just quoted (or the AC procedures I linked to above) seriously intended to deliberately allow an admin to unilaterally impose a block even if the block is against already-formed consensus not to block (that is how I interpret Roger's statements too). I thought the idea is to reduce the number of unnecessary appeals and not force them to become a much more regular and frequent feature. Also, when a consensus is clearly desired by the admins in the first instance who are still reasonably discussing the best way to handle the request, I don't believe this principle or the procedures intended to (as Roger's statements suggest to me) deliberately let an admin make a unilateral block and cut the desired discussion off where there were no genuine supervenient circumstances requiring that action. I really don't see how that approach is ensuring priority enforcement actions are taken carefully in the first instance where possible, or are helpful especially in those situations.
Perhaps more discussion and views are needed. Ncmvocalist (talk) 16:49, 28 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by IP

I feel it's worth noting that the situation described in 2A just played out in a recently closed AE request (it's still there but hatted). I assume that part was unmentioned in the hopes of avoiding a dramastorm, so I won't name it directly. That said, I consider it valuable context that arbs should be aware of and review. (talk) 18:26, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Since the dramastorm came anyway (sorry, Ncmvocalist) I will comment on the AE after all. Despite the criticism, I have found that Sandstein goes out of his way to accommodate other admins positions at AE. Most commonly he will state he disagrees with something but will not stand in the way of consensus. I have also seen him full on defer to other admins who disagree with him at AE when closing a case. His actions in the related AE surprised me. I think this is the first time he has pushed through his preferred action in the face of what was arguably a developing consensus for a simple warning. I'm not saying he was wrong, Sandstein is usually technically correct (the BEST kind of correct!), but it is curious that he would act... Out of character, I guess? I'm not sure how best to describe it.
to Roger, would you consider closing an AE request with no action an administrative action? It does not require use of the tools, but it is something only an admin is allowed to do. If so, does it enjoy the protection of other AE admin actions? So if, for example, HJ Mitchell had closed the case with a warning, would Sandstein need a "clear and active consensus" to block instead? I ask that you consider these scenarios seriously because it appears to me Arbcom is inadvertently creating a race to action in contentious cases where you are intending "deliberate and careful use". (talk) 16:11, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Floq

I'm glad to see this has been asked already, I was about to. I think the answers so far to 1A are pretty reasonable and uncontroversial. I'm more interested in Arbs' answers to 2A. Normally, an admin can take unilateral AE action without waiting for a discussion, and then the normal AE rules apply to reverse that action: unlike a normal admin action, consensus would be required to overturn the AE action. However, when a discussion is already underway, and there is no consensus on the blocking (or a preliminary consensus not to block), it seems unfair to unilaterally make the decision to block, and then insist on a new discussion to overturn it. If it really is acceptable to do that, could not an admin with an opposing viewpoint decide to "officially warn" someone, or block them for 1 second, and then close the AE request, preventing any further blocking without a brand new discussion? (I'm not advocating that, of course, just pointing out that it kind of follows from the answers to 1A). AE enforcement is meant to streamline things, but in the scenario described above, it's being used instead as a trump card. It shouldn't be. If there is an ongoing discussion at AE with differing viewpoints on blocking among the uninvolved admins, an admin shouldn't wade in and block before a consensus develops. --Floquenbeam (talk) 18:59, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Short comment from Collect

The principle of "do it first so the other admin will be wheel-warring" has been discussed before, without any solid answers. Zugzwang is a rough equivalent. Why not recognize that valid issue raised by Floq above - and issue a sua sponte dictum that blocks should generally require the initial input of (say) three admins in order to have standing against a simple reversal by another admin? Thus reducing the value of "first move wins." Collect (talk) 20:46, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Observation by TenOfAllTrades

While the IP has alluded to it, I'm going to make it explicit. This is another damn "hypothetical situation" thread that's actually not at all hypothetical, and like it or not the Arb's responses are going to be read in that context. Yep, it's another damn Malleus/Eric Corbett thread: link to discussion, closure.

Unlike most threads involving Eric Corbett, it was dealt with in a reasonable amount of time, after a reasonable discussion, and resulted in a reasonable final decision that wasn't followed by a firestorm or wheel warring. The ArbCom should be very cautious in how it approaches the question in 2A, in that the question seems to be exploring ways that an ArbCom decision to impose discretionary sanctions can be nullified by a single admin. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 21:14, 26 January 2015 (UTC)

Passing comment from Harry Mitchell

I was one of the admins who opined against a block in the "hypothetical" scenario. I disagree with the block for reasons I've stated elsewhere (mainly that it is based on an overly literal interpretation of the remedy with no regard for its spirit), but at the end of the day AE cannot afford to become deadlocked like ANI whenever a big name is involved. The solution? More objective, level-headed admins at AE. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 02:49, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Sandstein

As the admin who made the block discussed in the second question, I'm offering the following comments:

  • This looks like an appeal in the guise of a clarification request, and an attempt to circumvent the Committee's rule that appeals are heard only if they are made by the user who is the subject of the sanction. Because that user has chosen, in this instance, not to appeal the block, and the user asking the question is not in any way affected by this situation, there is in my view nothing that needs – in the sense of an actual controversy awaiting resolution – to be clarified.
  • On the merits, I'm of the view that any discussion among admins or others about an enforcement request does not prevent any admin from taking, or not taking, any enforcement action they deem appropriate.
  • First, the rules about enforcement actions (as well as discretionary sanctions, which are not at issue here) do not envision or require any form of discussion among whoever. The only exception is the case mentioned in the question but not at issue here because no discretionary sanctions are concerned: "Prior to placing sanctions that are likely to be controversial, administrators are advised to elicit the opinions of other administrators at AE". Even this does not require admins to follow or look for consensus, but only advises them to listen to the opinions of other admins (which they may then choose to disregard). As far as I know this was an intentional decision by the arbitrators who drafted these rules. Any discussion that does occur is merely an aid for coming to the right conclusion, but it is not envisioned by any rule to be a consensus-forming process. Discussion and consensus become relevant only at a later stage – in an appeal, either to the community or to administrators.
  • Second, as has been mentioned above, requiring admins not to act in the absence of a consensus to act would have two effects that would severely impair the effective enforcement of the decisions made by this Committee. First, sanctioned users who have many friends, as seems to be case here, can block enforcement just by having enough people show up that any consensus becomes unfeasible to establish and timely action impossible to take, as is regularly the case on community noticeboards. Second, this would in effect compel admins who are interested in arbitration enforcement to take action as soon as possible without waiting for discussion, which would likely impair the quality and acceptance of enforcement actions, and by extension the effectiveness of this Committee's decisions. I would prefer that not to be the case, because I think that the discussions among the admins who regularly work at AE are often very helpful.  Sandstein  08:31, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
with regard to your first point, I hope you do not mean to imply that an admin may act against known consensus. DGG ( talk ) 03:34, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
No, that would be pointless because an admin acting against known consensus would have to expect their action to be overturned on appeal. What I mean is that I read the existing rules to mean that admins are neither expected not required to wait for or act only based on consensus. If and where the Committee expects admins to look for consensus instead of enforcing ArbCom decisions on their own initiative, they should be clear about it and tell us so in the rules, which is currently not the case.  Sandstein  09:23, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
@Roger Davies: Thanks for your advice concerning a de minimis rule. If it is indeed the view of the Committee that violations of ArbCom decisions that are considered less severe according to some standard should not result in enforcement action, then the Committee should articulate this standard explicitly. I currently work on the assumption that if you topic-ban somebody from "X, broadly construed", this means that you expect this editor to be blocked in each and every case in which they make a X-related edit outside of the policy exceptions, no matter what the circumstances may be. If that is not so, then you should tell admins which criteria they should use to decide whether or not to take action. I caution, though, that this (and any added consensus requirements) may have the effect that your sanctions against popular and well-networked users may be enforced much less effectively, if at all, than your sanctions against other editors.  Sandstein  09:23, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Rich Farmbrough

It seems to to me that the "first mover advantage" is a long-standing Wiki problem which has been dealt with traditionally by consensus and discussion, and application of policy.

The rule making AE non-overturnable effectively gives a form of absolute power to the Admins who frequent AE, which has been abused, just as the absolute power of checkusers has been abused (and historically, almost every other form of power, both absolute and otherwise).

So the instant problem of Sandstein's "overly literal interpretation of the remedy with no regard for its spirit" - and indeed his history of such narrow and binary interpretations, not unusual amongst the Wikipedia demographic, really pales into insignificance with the systemic problem that we have created of non-overturnable admin actions. It would be better, if still not ideal, if these actions were subject to normal community scrutiny.

I understand, of course, that the idea is to prevent an infinite regress. More important though is the inequality

Community > Policy > ArbCom > AE decisions

The current arrangement breaks this in no uncertain manner.

All the best: Rich Farmbrough16:30, 28 January 2015 (UTC).

Statement by Risker

I was pinged to comment here. I do indeed remember both this case, and the early stages of the discussion about revisions to the discretionary sanctions process that were made, in part, as a result of that case. The clear intention at the time was to address the fact that AE seems to attract administrators who like to mete out sanctions regardless of the state of the discussion of a request (i.e., to sanction even in situations where a preponderance of administrators do not believe a sanction is appropriate) or just as seriously to interpret the "consensus" of administrators as supporting sanction even in situations where almost all other administrators would say there was either (a) no consensus or (b) a consensus not to sanction. Arbitration enforcement is in some ways even more powerful than arbitration decisions themselves, because at an arbcom case there must be a clear majority supporting a sanction before it can be placed. My read of the two situations described above is as follows:

  • 1A) is a clear superimposition of the second administrator's decision, overriding the first administrator's decision. This is not acceptable and, if there have been prior warnings, could easily lead to desysop or other sanction such as restriction from participating in any way in arbitration enforcement for an extended period (Arbcom seems to be big on the "don't appeal for a year" position right now, which would be sufficient).
  • 2A) If multiple administrators have opined and there is no really clear consensus for applying sanctions (or no clear consensus on what sanction should be applied) then sanctions should not be applied. The assessment of consensus should, ideally, be done by an administrator who has not participated in the discussion of the request. (The reasonable parallel would be XfD.) Administrators who regularly apply sanctions when there is no clear consensus are also subject to the sanctions mentioned above. It is not helpful to have hardliners applying sanctions that don't have at minimum more than a majority support of uninvolved administrators, either for the reputation of AE itself (it's not appropriate to have a situation where it doesn't matter what others say if Admin Y is going to do what they want anyway) or to ensure that there is a multiplicity of administrators participating.

Those were the intentions at the time of the case, and in the early discussions for improving the procedures. Hope that helps. Risker (talk) 07:28, 29 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by {other user}

Clerk notes

This area is used for notes by the clerks (including clerk recusals).

Arbitration Enforcement sanction handling: Arbitrator views and discussion

  • Regarding 1A, the key part of your scenario are the words "After the block has expired". Once the block has expired any further blocking, for any cause, is a new action. I suspect that in most circumstances this second blocking would be very ill-advised and possibly a bad block. There exists the possibility that the second administrator is in possession of new/additional information (which may or may not be publicly shareable) that justifies the action, so I am not going to say it will always be a bad block. Your question 2A requires more thought before answering. Thryduulf (talk) 01:09, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
    • Regarding 2A, contrary to how I interpret Roger's statement, I see choosing not to act is as much a part of the role of an administrator as choosing to act is. If there is consensus that a block is not warranted then that should have the same protection as consensus to block does. If consensus is unclear then absent an emergency situation or being privy to private information (both of which would need to be explicitly flagged as such) then no single admin should issue a block until it is clear that a block does have consensus. A useful analogy for me is that an admin closing an XfD as "keep" is acting in exactly the same capacity as if they were closing it as "delete", even though only one outcome requires using the administrative toolset. Thryduulf (talk) 22:19, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Concerning 1A, I tend to agree with my learned colleague. As a general rule, I'd say that once an administrator has imposed a discretionary sanction on an editor, said sanction should not be modified in pejus (i.e. should not be made harsher) in the absence of a. the imposing administrator's consent, b. a consensus of uninvolved editors or administrators, b. arbcom's authorisation or d. supervenient circumstances justifying the increase. Salvio Let's talk about it! 15:28, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
    • Concerning 2A, both the imposition of discretionary sanctions and the enforcement of an ArbCom-imposed restriction do not require consensus; any admin may act without having to go through AE and without having to seek consensus. That's the point of arbitration enforcement, after all: to have the means to stop disruption quickly without getting bogged down in long discussions. Seeking consensus (and, of course, following it) is merely advised and not made mandatory. It's certainly possible to argue that acting without seeking prior consensus and acting against an emerging consensus are different things, and I agree, but this distinction is not supported by policy at the moment. That said, an admin following best practices, for instance, would not have blocked in the circumstances, but the block is neither an abuse of power nor invalid. Of course, should a sysop make a habit of acting against consensus, arbcom would consider asking said admin to stop doing enforcement.

      Concerning what constitutes an admin action, well, this is trickier. In general, declining to act has generally not been considered an admin action and, so, another admin may decide to act without violating the prohibition on modifying someone else's action without consent or consensus. At the same time, an admin who decided to impose a 1-sec. block to prevent others from imposing harsher sanctions would clearly be trying to game the system and could probably be sanctioned himself. My personal feeling is that the only action which qualifies as admin action, in these cases, would be closing (and hatting) an AE thread without action.

      Finally, concerning the issue of de minimis, yes, Sandstein, admins are allowed to exercise their best judgement when enforcing an arbcom-imposed restriction; sometimes, a block will be needed, others a warning will suffice and others the violation may even be too inconsequential to warrant any action and could even lead to a boomerang on the OP. We trust administrators, that's why we have tasked them with enforcing our decisions, we don't want you to become automata. Your common sense is valued. Salvio Let's talk about it! 10:50, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

  • This is perhaps the least hypothetical hypothetical I've seen in a while. Blocking after a prior block has expired strikes me as double jeopardy in the absence of either a fresh violation, or a consensus of uninvolved editors that the editor actually needs a harsher block (the situation that comes to mind readily is a community request for an indefinite block/community ban.) But in most cases, if the block "fixed" the issue and there are no new violations, blocks are not punishment, and the discretion of the first administrator likely should be respected. Courcelles 23:23, 26 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Placing a fresh block for conduct that has already been dealt with - at least on the face of it and absent a rationale from the second admin - seems to me to be gaming the prohibition on modifying another administrator's blocks. On the second question, what distinguishes administrative actions is use of the tools or making an action explicitly reserved for administrators. A refusal to act cannot therefore be an administrative action as no administrative action has taken place. As a hypothetical if a bunch of people are hurling abuse at each other and furiously edit-warring, and - for whatever reason - an administrator explicitly refuses to act in respect of any of them, are each of them immunised against blocking? The common sense answer has to be "Certainly not".  Roger Davies talk 09:13, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
    • @Thryduulf, Ncmvocalist:. The point here I think is that AE is designed as a streamlined summary process and has never required collective decisions before admin action. This is how it should be. It enables admins to act swiftly and decisively when the need arises, by authorising admins as individuals. They can ask their colleagues what they think but they're not bound to take those opinions into account. There is no supervote because no vote is taking place. The enforcing admin is entirely responsible for their action and if they get it seriously wrong (or make strange calls frequently) they may be subject to sanction themselves. This will sometimes lead to actions which are controversial and sometimes heavyhanded but the issue then is whether the admin action was reasonable (and the DS procedure sets out guidelines on this) and not whether there was consensus for it.  Roger Davies talk 09:29, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
    • Sandstein What you say is true though I find it wearying that once again a borderline call has been made and once again you are the instigator. Perhaps you might consider writing "de minimis non curat lex" on a post-it note and placing it prominently on your monitor?  Roger Davies talk 16:49, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
    • Ncmvocalist I'm not quite clear what Risker has got to do with this (but for information I replied here). Anyhow, to the substantive point. The text you quote comes from the 2011 case on Arbitration enforcement. Since then we've had a major six-month public review of DS. It doesn't talk about reaching consensus before a decision but it does include an extensive new section, "The Role of Administrators", advising administrators about when to act and when to not act. Whether or not, in this instance, that advice has been disregarded is an altogether difference matter. So, to turn back to the consensus issue, I still it's wise to obtain consensus but it's not compulsory.  Roger Davies talk 17:29, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I agree with my colleagues's views on 1A - there would have to be something new or overlooked to justify a 2nd block. The phrase 'supervenient circumstances' is a great description but I'd warn against reading our article Supervenience. As for 2A, I'm not convinced it can be answered as a hypothetical question - and I'm not convinced that ArbCom trying to specify an answer wouldn't be micro-managing, rarely a good idea. I'd perhaps be willing to opine on a specific situation. And I like Roger's example. Dougweller (talk) 19:55, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I agree with Thryduulf about 1A. There would need to be something additional, and in a possibly uncertain case like this it would be very wise to seek consensus first. Otherwise it would facilitate administrator-shopping, and one point of arb enfacement is to avoid this. I also agree with him about 2A. Within the structure of arb enforcement, this is an admin action, and over-riding it would require prior consensus. Otherwise this too would facilitate administrator-shopping. As for the original block that set this off, our discussing this would need to be separate. DGG ( talk ) 01:17, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
  • To 1A, I think that it's generally common courtesy to discuss an issue with the other admin when one is considering modifying their action, especially when nothing new has taken place that changes the circumstances since that admin made their decision. Whether such an action would be justified depends on the circumstances, and I'm hesitant to give definitive answers to a wide hypothetical, but I think once an action has been decided and taken, it shouldn't be modified without a very good reason, and "I would've done differently if I'd made the call" is generally not in itself sufficient. The point of having admins is that we should be able to trust them to evaluate individual situations and exercise good judgment, as no two scenarios will be exactly the same. To 2A, arbitration enforcement actions are intended to be undertaken by a single administrator, and that admin takes full responsibility for the action. Preexisting consensus is not required, but good judgment is. If several other uninvolved admins, or uninvolved editors in good standing, are objecting to a sanction or have explicitly declined to place one, that doesn't prevent someone else from doing so, but it is at minimum incumbent upon an admin placing a sanction to carefully consider the objections others made before doing so. If the editor who has been sanctioned does not believe there would be a consensus of admins for the action in question, that editor may appeal, and at that point, consensus of admins (or arbitrators, if the appeal reaches us) would be measured during the appeal. The fact that the editor in question here (we all know that this hypothetical isn't too hypothetical, I believe) chooses not to take advantage of the process doesn't change what the process is. Seraphimblade Talk to me 11:55, 29 January 2015 (UTC)
  • The eventual action is of course appealable and beholden to consensus. An administrator, if they see a consensus against applying a particular sanction, they ought not apply it because presumably such AE an action would be undone. However, if there is disagreement, and an administrator is confident in an application, I'm hesitant to say they cannot just becuase it's possible there will be consensus against them. The onus definitely relies upon individual administrators. I'd advise that in areas where a consensus is in the process of forming, or has formed, against the administrator action, due caution and restraint be advised. NativeForeigner Talk 07:56, 1 February 2015 (UTC)


Requests for enforcement

Arbitration enforcement action appeal by Ubikwit

Procedural notes: The rules governing arbitration enforcement appeals are found here. According to the procedures, a "clear, substantial, and active consensus of uninvolved editors" is required to overturn an arbitration enforcement action.

To help determine any such consensus, involved editors may make brief statements in separate sections but should not edit the section for discussion among uninvolved editors. Editors are normally considered involved if they are in a current dispute with the sanctioning or sanctioned editor, or have taken part in disputes (if any) related to the contested enforcement action. Administrators having taken administrative actions are not normally considered involved for this reason alone (see WP:UNINVOLVED).

Appealing user 
Ubikwit (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) – --Ubikwit 連絡 見学/迷惑 14:56, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
Sanction being appealed 

Per this Arbitration case, this discussion and your previous warning, I am invoking discretionary sanctions and topic banning you from editing any articles (and their associated talk pages) relating to the Arab-Israeli conflict, broadly construed, with immediate effect. Note that any violation of this ban may result in an immediate block from any administrator with no further warning given, as this notice has already explained the sanctions you are subject to and served as sufficient notice. This ban has no expiry, although this ban may be revisited by the community at a later date.

Administrator imposing the sanction 
Deskana (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA)
Notification of that administrator 
The appealing editor is asked to notify the administrator who made the enforcement action of this appeal, and then to replace this text with a diff of that notification. The appeal may not be processed otherwise. If a block is appealed, the editor moving the appeal to this board should make the notification.

Statement by Ubikwit

The topic ban was largely the result of my having been trolled and not knowing how to handle it by disengaging, instead of engaging. I would like the ban overturned. The counterparty of the concurrently imposed interaction ban was a self-avowed activist that has subsequently been topic banned from all topics related to Judaism and appears to no longer be active on Wikipedia.
@NuclearWarfare: I've been in a couple of disputes, three or four that I can recall. One was related to sourcing used in relation to the Ukraine crisis; more specifically, a blanket rejection of sources from Russia. That ended up with my starting a thread on the Identifying RS Talk page, which was inconclusive but productive. Another related to a promotional article about "Jews in Nepal", which was eventual resolved satisfactorily thanks to the participation of Nishidani and Ravpapa, who found some reliable sources and almost single-handedly created an encyclopedic article from scratch. Finally, there is a current dispute I've been involved in for some time now related to the Soka Gakkai, which also involves huge amounts of promotional bloat and sourcing questions. I recently notified one editor of the ADVOCACY policy, due to repeated attempts to find a work around in a content dispute and insert content against consensus, which resulted in this AN/I thread. That seemed to be heading toward a BOOMERANG, but looks like it will be inconclusive, though a couple of editors have voluntarily withdrawn from editing the article itself. There is a series of related articles around that NRM that probably need discretionary sanctions to prevent such long-term disputes from consuming peoples time. The dispute addressed in that thread started back in August, approximately.
It has just dawned on me that I forgot to list the Arbcom Teaparty case, during which you were serving on the Committee, and which occurred after the sanction being appealed.
@Deskana: I do understand that it was disruptive to edit war, regardless of the status of the content dispute. I've since learned a significant amount about policy and dispute resolution and have done my best to adapt my approach accordingly.
@HJ Mitchell: That would be fine. I don't even have any specific articles I want to edit in the area at present, so a random selection or the like would suffice.

  • I think that the comments added by Is not a (talk · contribs) below are illustrative of editing in a contentious area.
First, it should be pointed out that the editor is a new account with a fairly high degree of familiarity with WP policy.
Second, Is not a (talk · contribs) casts aspersions on the Talk page and here, where he refers to anti-semitism, apparently linking that to his accusation that I "restored a citation of an attack site". A search of RS/N appears to reveal that the site is not an attack site, but a reliable source falling under news organizations, as I've commented on the relevant Talk page thread of the Kagan article. Is not a (talk · contribs) has attempted to dismiss RS documenting connections to the Project for the New American Century and the The Foreign Policy Initiative (FPI), reference to which has been completely removed from the article, despite numerous RS readily accessible, online, such as this. In fact, this series of edits sees a plurality of passages that appear to be adequately sourced being removed.
I spoke about being trolled, and the conduct of User Is a would seem to typify aspects of that type of behavior. It is not pleasant, but I have learned to respond in a more cool, calm, and collected manner.--Ubikwit 連絡 見学/迷惑 01:51, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
The plot thickens, it turns out that there was a subplot to the subterfuge at the Kagan Talk page regarding the editor with the tricky Wikiname Is not a (talk · contribs) "is a", with this source being purported "attack site", which is on a website hosted by Institute for Policy Studies, to which he was indirectly referring to using the acronym "IPS" (there is no actual mention of that organization or its acronym in the multiple passages he deleted), while also deleting the text sourced to an article from the news organization "IPS" (the only direct reference to "IPS" on the page). The so-called "attack site" piece is a profile that would probably be categorized as a tertiary source, with 24 citations, including many to pieces in the NYT and WP. I don't have time to read the piece itself but would assume it has a liberal POV. I've inquired whether the editor might have a COI regarding the Kagan and Nuland articles. --Ubikwit 連絡 見学/迷惑 03:34, 05:43, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
Is this trolling? Harassment?[71] It's certainly not engaging in the discussion at hand in that thread, rather, trying to prevent the discussion from progressing in a manner such as to evaluate the sourcing questions at issue. The editor also linked to their post here in that post on BLP/N.
Note that the edit summary is to the IP rant in which that diff occurs, which has been hatted as trolling.--Ubikwit 連絡 見学/迷惑 18:12, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Deskana

I've not been very involved in this for a while now so I don't have any strong opinion about this appeal. That said, I would note that a good part of the reason why the sanction was imposed was because Ubikwit failed to realise that he was edit warring and instead tended to blame it on other people (see this example). The fact that the first sentence in his statement in this appeal is "The topic ban was largely the result of my having been trolled" would seem to indicate that he still hasn't really understood that his behaviour was disruptive. This, to me, would seem to indicate that the ban is still necessary. That said, I defer to those more active in this area to make a decision around this. --(ʞɿɐʇ) ɐuɐʞsǝp 23:20, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by (involved editor 1)

Statement by (involved editor 2)

Discussion among uninvolved editors about the appeal by Ubikwit

Statement by is not a

Since 8 months ago, Ubikwit (talk · contribs)'s edits on Robert Kagan seem to violate WP:BLP and other guidelines:

  • Ubikwit reinserted a meandering discussion of (Jewish philosopher) Leo Strauss,[72] despite Volunteer Marek (talk · contribs)'s warnings about WP:BLP ([73], again [74] despite [75], [76] despite [77]) although finally he did respect the BLP-based consensus [78] I am happy to report.
  • Ubikwit reinserted the "Jewish" categorisation of Kagan [79] [80] despite RayAYang (talk · contribs)'s warnings [81] [82] and Kagan's pleas since 2008 to stop this Jewish-labeling [83]. Related edits on the talk page of Kagan follow:
  • On talk:Robert Kagan, Ubikwit accused Kagan of being close to "The Israel Lobby" adding a summary that explictly stated he was aware of blpcat" [84] and linking to this anti-semitic website discussing Zionists, Jews, donors, The Israel Lobby two edits after a talk-page warning (to all) by Volunteer Marek [85]. A thorough BLP:Cat warning was given by RayAYang (talk · contribs) [86], who also explained the anti-semitism associated with "The Israel Lobby" and accusations of "divided loyalty" between the US and Israel. Then Ubikwit wrote "there are plenty of politicians Jews among them that present themselves as being loyal to the USA and pro-Israel without worrying about that presenting a possible COI, emphasizing that Israel is "the only democracy in the Middle East", etc."[87]
  • Today Ubikwit restored a citation of an attack site, calling Kagan a rightwing militarist [88].

This is just one page, but the pattern of edits suggests that the problematic editing is not just limited to edit-warring violation, which was Ubikwit's removal of Israeli Jews from a list of indigenous populations. Examination of Ubikwit's behavior on other articles related to Jews, Judaism, Israel, The Israel Lobby, neoconservatism, Leo Strauss and Straussians, Robert Kagan and family broadly considered as well as biographies of living persons should be done before making a decision about Ubikwit.

Second, Robert Kagan has had severe violations of WP:BLP since at least 2008. For example, the (talk · contribs) with only vandalism edits targetting Kagan has never been blocked. The history of this article horrifies me. Somehow Kagan's article needs to be protected from further WP:BLP violations, particularly edits that may appear to have anti-semitism.

Thank you. is a 22:42, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Ubikwit's behavior over this weekend reinforces the concerns stated above. is a 20:47, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

@Deskana: Ubikwit's three 2014 summertime edits about "double loyalties" to Israel and the USA and "The Israel Lobby" violated his topic ban (and linked to an anti-semitic site), among other policies. is a 21:07, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Result of the appeal by Ubikwit

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.

Note for the sake of completeness: The topic ban (and interaction ban) were imposed 3 January 2013 in this edit by Deskana. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 17:42, 27 January 2015 (UTC)

  • No blocks within 2014 is promising. Would you say that you got into any editorial disputes since your last block? If so, could you please link to and describe them? Thanks, NW (Talk) 21:10, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • The required notification of the sanctioning admin is still lacking.  Sandstein  22:17, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I'd like to hear from the sanctioning admin, but this looks reasonably promising. The sanction was imposed a long time ago, Ubikwit recognises the error of their ways and states that they've changed their approach, they've been active in other topic areas, and they haven't been sanctioned recently. Certainly on the surface this ticks all the boxes that we look at when deciding appeals, but I haven't yet done a deeper review of their recent contributions. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 23:10, 27 January 2015 (UTC)
    • @Ubikwit: How would you feel about having a relatively narrow range of articles to edit in the ARBPIA topic area for a few months, after which we could re-evaluate with a view to lifting the topic ban if you don't get in to trouble during that time? I'm keen to give some leeway because I don't like the idea that topic bans are forever, especially if the sanctioned editor abides by the ban and edits productively elsewhere, but I have to agree with Deskana that your opening statement doesn't fill me with hope. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 00:09, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Given the other user with whom Ubikwit was clashing has stopped editing I'd be inclined to hear this appeal further. It is disappointing (as Deskana) points out that their statement focuses on blaming other people rather than taking responsibility however I can see past that. It like HJ's idea, something like giving us some articles they wish to edit and after a few months coming back here to decide whether to lift it outright or not. Given edit warring was a concern another possibility would be to replace the TBAN with 1RR and see how that goes. I'm not convinced which of these options I prefer at the moment, going to consider it for a bit. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 02:22, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
    • Israel-Palestine articles are under a blanket 1RR, so an editor-specific 1RR would be redundant. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 02:30, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
      • Thanks, I got the I and the P round the wrong way.
      Having thought about this some more I'm moving towards thinking that we should just lift the TBAN completely (especially given it's been 2 years with no major issues) but make it clear that there will likely be a fairly low bar to placing it again if need be. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 09:44, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
  • Despite continuing to edit in contentious areas, Ubikwit seems to have avoided trouble over the last year, and appears to have gotten better at staying cool in heated debates. Since I don't see any barrier to re-imposing it should things to awry, I'm in favour of lifting the topic ban. Guettarda (talk) 21:18, 28 January 2015 (UTC)
  • I'd still be happier if Ubikwit started off with a few articles or a relatively narrow subtopic so that we could evaluate how they get on there for a few weeks and then lift the ban completely if there were no issues, but in a choice between absolute acceptance or absolute rejection of the appeal, I'm more incline towards acceptance. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 21:42, 30 January 2015 (UTC)
    • It's not too difficult to TBAN them very quickly again if any undesired behaviour occurs, and if we do allow a small subtopic it's completely likely that it won't be enough to see whether the type of behaviour which will characterise their edits to the broader topic. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 00:12, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
  • @Is not a: I don't believe those edits violated the ban. The ban was from the Arab-Israeli conflict, and precedent at this board is that that doesn't include edits about either Israel or Palestine/Arabia unless explicitly stated, only the conflict between them. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 13:02, 1 February 2015 (UTC)


Arbitration enforcement action appeal by Protonk



Theobald Tiger

This request may be declined without further action if insufficient or unclear information is provided in the "Request" section below.
Requests may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs (not counting required information), except by permission of a reviewing administrator.

Request concerning Theobald Tiger

User who is submitting this request for enforcement 
Tgeairn (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) 00:50, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
User against whom enforcement is requested 
Theobald Tiger (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Search DS alerts: in user talk history • in system log

Sanction or remedy to be enforced
Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Landmark_Worldwide#Discretionary_sanctions_.28January_2015.29 :
Diffs of edits that violate this sanction or remedy, and an explanation how these edits violate it 
  1. 30 January 2015 Personal attack in edit summary, mass revert without discussion
  2. 30 January 2015 Mass revert, disregarding active talk page discussions (multiple reverts to article)
  3. 30 January 2015 Personal attacks
  4. 30 January 2015 Mass revert of multiple edits, disregarding active talk page discussions (multiple reverts to article)
  5. 29 January 2015 BLP violations on article talk page
  6. 29 January 2015 personal attack
  7. 29 January 2015 revert without regard for talk page discussions (multiple reverts to article)
  8. 29 January 2015 revert without regard for talk page discussions (multiple reverts to article)

Diffs of previous relevant sanctions, if any 

If discretionary sanctions are requested, supply evidence that the user is aware of them (see WP:AC/DS#Awareness and alerts)
  • Gave an alert about discretionary sanctions in the area of conflict in the last twelve months, on 23 January 2015.
  • Participated in an arbitration request or enforcement procedure about the area of conflict in the last twelve months, on 9 January 2015.

Additional comments by editor filing complaint 

This editor was significantly involved with the Landmark Worldwide topic on nl-wiki. There was some kind of block put in place (block log), and I am unclear what the circumstance of that is. It appears that the nl-wiki block has been lifted. Upon arrival here, the editor displayed in-depth experience with the Landmark subject,[120] and appears to have a strong POV (evidenced in the diffs above).

@Astynax: 1) Yes, I am aware of DS. That is why I came here to ask for enforcement of DS. 2) I don't see anything at the ANI link you provided that makes any sense of what you are saying. I made a single comment in that discussion, effectively asking that editors stop fighting over POV. Obviously that did not happen. 3) Multiple reverts to the article are not justified when there is dispute and discussion underway. There was no consensus for the material and yet it was reinserted into the article multiple times. 4) I'm not sure if you are saying that I have been intransigently unilaterally reverting, blanking, hectoring, or entangling. If you are, please stop and use the appropriate mechanisms (such as an enforcement request) to report such behaviour. I obviously disagree and I welcome any and all examination of my editing. Tgeairn (talk) 20:31, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
As three different editors have all responded to the mention above of blocks on nl-wiki and the linking to the relevant block log, it was and is my understanding that the proper form for filing a request here includes linking previous actions taken. As these actions were not on en, but were recent (the most recent three blocks were within the last six months, the prior blocks are much older) I listed them as an additional comment rather than as a recent or current sanction. I also requested and received a review of the form of my filing from a clerk, who said it was correct form. If including the log from .nl was incorrect, I request that a clerk strike my relevant comment(s) or alert me. Tgeairn (talk) 23:25, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
Notification of the user against whom enforcement is requested 

Discussion concerning Theobald Tiger

Statements must be made in separate sections. They may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs, except by permission of a reviewing administrator.
Administrators may remove or shorten noncompliant statements. Disruptive contributions may result in blocks.

Statement by Theobald Tiger

I will comment briefly on the difflinks provided by Tgeairn:

  • Ad 1. Tgeairn is, in my view, a contributor with a clear COI who tries to keep Landmark Worldwide free from encyclopedic content by all possible means. Tgeairn is sometimes reasonable, mostly frankly unreasonable, often intimidating, always taking the moral high ground. Tgeairn has also violated WP:Point by nominating Margit Warburg for deletion, an article started by Astynax with whom he happens to have an argument on Talk:Landmark Worldwide, and by deleting whatever he/she comes across that has something to do with the sociology of (alternative pseudo-)religious movements (like Landmark). Therefore I reverted his blanking with an edit summary that seems to me appropriate.
  • Ad 2. The discussion on the talk page did by no means support the blanking of the new history paragraph. Therefore I reverted Tgeairn's blanking, with an edit summary that seems to me appropriate.
  • Ad 3. This is no personal attack at all. My conclusions might have been unpleasant to Tgeairn, but they seem to me well-founded and even inescapable.
  • Ad 4. See Ad 2.
  • Ad 5. This allegation of a violation of WP:BLP seems to me not only far-fetched but wrong. Tgeairn had objected to some article text on the topic of Werner Erhard's lack of education. I replied by saying that such information is to be expected in cases like this, because (as I said) "Erhard is in large part an autodidact and a dreamer". This remark does, as far as I can see, no harm to Erhard's reputation. Moreover, it is well-founded (autodidact, Erhard is frequently called a 'visionary', having had a decisive 'vision' on the Golden Gate Bridge), and it was a remark on the talk page, not in the article.
  • Ad 6. I recommend to read the complete Reliable Sources Request. This request, done by Tgeairn, is plainly absurd. I have answered it to my abilities.
  • Ad 7. Revert of unmotivated blanking with an edit summary that seems to me appropriate.
  • Ad 8. See Ad 7.

A topic ban for Tgeairn seems to me indicated. My blocklog on has absolutely nothing to do with Landmark as two admins on (Josq & CaAl) and a Dutch speaking admin on (Drmies) have attested. I wish the Arbitration Committee wisdom and understanding when investigating the case and passing judgment on our actions. Theobald Tiger (talk) 22:22, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

PS Tgeairn pulls an angelic face confronted with criticism of having mentioned my blocklog on, but the way he/she did it - "There was some kind of block put in place (block log), and I am unclear what the circumstance of that is" - is outright insinuating, offensive and malicious. Theobald Tiger (talk) 11:19, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Astynax

Tgeairn was also explicitly made aware of discretionary sanctions[121] and hopefully admins will take his own activity into account. Tgeairn is almost certainly aware (as he commented here, where it was a notable part of the discussion) that the calumny recently raised at ARCA[122] regarding Theobald Tiger's participation on nl.wikipedia has no more merit or relevance here than it did a week ago. Nor were Theobald Tiger's reverts unjustified, as they merely restored massive and incremental blanking reverts of referenced material. Tgeairn himself participated in the blanking of this material. Arbcom invited new eyes to the article, yet those who have arrived (Manul, Cathar66, Legacypac, IronGargoyle, in addition to Theobald Tiger) have been subjected to the same intransigent reversion/blanking and talk page hectoring (including unilateral reversion, citing an invalid rationale, of a Move survey by a non-involved editor[123][124]) behavior by Landmark advocates which I attempted to describe in the original arbcom case. This is also not the first attempt to entangle fresh eyes who have come to the article in WP:DR processes, which is itself very off-putting. • Astynax talk 19:55, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Legacypac

1. BOOMARANG this - the edit history on Landmark Worldwide shows the tactics clearly of systematically deleting material. 2. The Editor who filed this unfounded complaint is the subject of an active Sockpuppet investigation [125] over conduct on this article. Let's see where that goes before taking this too seriously. 3. It was well established that th nl-wiki block was nothing to do with this issue. Legacypac (talk) 21:02, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by (username)

Result concerning Theobald Tiger

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the section above.

Arbitration enforcement action appeal by Obsidi

Procedural notes: The rules governing arbitration enforcement appeals are found here. According to the procedures, a "clear, substantial, and active consensus of uninvolved editors" is required to overturn an arbitration enforcement action.

To help determine any such consensus, involved editors may make brief statements in separate sections but should not edit the section for discussion among uninvolved editors. Editors are normally considered involved if they are in a current dispute with the sanctioning or sanctioned editor, or have taken part in disputes (if any) related to the contested enforcement action. Administrators having taken administrative actions are not normally considered involved for this reason alone (see WP:UNINVOLVED).

Appealing user 
Obsidi (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)Obsidi (talk) 21:40, 31 January 2015 (UTC)
Sanction being appealed 
Protection Pending Changes Level 2 of the page Gamergate controversy as can be seen in the Protection Log and the Discretionary Sanctions Log
Administrator imposing the sanction 
HJ Mitchell (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA)
Notification of that administrator 

Statement by Obsidi

This page is currently under Discretionary Sanctions which means that all editors are expected to take extra care that they “comply with all applicable policies and guidelines.”. In this case HJ Mitchell has protected the page in direct contradiction to the Protection Policy which states that Only what is known as "Pending changes level 1" should be used, which is labeled "Require review for revisions from new and unregistered users". Pending changes level 2, or "Require review for revisions from everyone except Reviewers", should not be used at this time per WP:PC2012/RfC 1. I have asked the admin to reconsider their actions, but he refused citing Ignore All Rules. There is nothing in the arbitration decision that suggests that it is appropriate to ignore the current protection policy, and even if there were The arbitration process is not a vehicle for creating new policy by fiat. If even the Arbitration Committee does not change policy, why should the actions of this one administrator, acting alone without community consensus, do so? If this case is a proper exception, I ask that reason be explained and that we get community consensus that we should use PC2 in those situations. Until such time, I ask that the page protection level be raised to Full Protection or lowered to Semi-Protection.

@RGloucester These are not "political positions," they are policy positions. The policy position currently taken by Wikipedia. And they have relevance as to why PC2 is not currently allowed by policy unlike most other protection levels. It is not the letter of the rules that is important it is the principles. I was trying to express the very principle upon why PC2 is not allowed but in this case is being violated. I am not "filing this appeal to make a point", I am appeal it to get the protection level changed. I requested that the admin change the protection level himself, he refused. I would prefer not to have to appeal this at all. There is nothing in the "ArbCom sanctions regime" that even suggests violating policy in this way. --Obsidi (talk) 22:14, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by HJ Mitchell

Can I just copy and paste what I said on my talk page instead of wasting more time on this non-issue?

I'm keeping the situation under review, but I consider this to be a legitimate invocation of IAR—"if a rule prevents you from improving or maintaining Wikipedia, ignore it". That's policy. There are very few legitimate invocations of IAR (I can count on one hand the number of times I've invoked it to justify an admin action, out of some 40,000 logged actions), but where we have unusual situations, it can be applied to slightly unorthodox solutions. In this case, the intention of PC2 is to keep BLP violations and other crap out of the article, and reviewers are under instructions to let everything through that isn't grossly inappropriate, even if they decide to revert it afterwards. Semi-protection alone would be insufficient given the sheer number of good-faith but inexperienced editors and bad-faith editors with sufficient determination to make ten edits and sit out for four days who are and have been active in the topic area, and I suspect the very application of PC2 will act as a deterrent to the latter. Especially given the high-profile nature of the article, I think concerns for the real lives of real people discussed in the article far outweigh our internal policy wonkery.

I'd just add:

  • Wikipedia is not a bureaucracy—we don't enforce policy for its own sake, though ironically both IAR and NOT are policies (compared to a suggestion in the protection policy made as the result of an RfC which reached no clear consensus).
  • I believe this to be a necessary measure to prevent and deter drive-by BLP violations while keeping the article open to editing. Given the nature of some of the edits to this and related articles (many of which have been RevDel'd or even suppressed), I believe extreme measures are both necessary and justified.
  • Long before Obsidi's complaint, I offered guidance to reviewers on what to accept, including the instruction that all legitimate edits should be accepted, even if the reviewer decides to revert them as part of the BRD process. I've even pitched in with the reviewing myself to keep delays in acceptance to a minimum.

HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 22:49, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by RGloucester

This is an absurd request, as I said at Mr Mitchell's talk page, and is exactly the type of bureaucratic nonsense that Wikipedia discourages. As I asked the filer at that talk page "Is there any reason why it shouldn't be used in this particular instance? That's the better question. Why should this particularly policy be enforced in this particular instance? If it is just for policy's sake, that's bureaucracy hindering the encylopaedia's improvement, and a waste of time". PC2 may not have consensus for general usage, but in this very specific and unique case, with an ArbCom sanctions regime behind him, Mr Mitchell made the right choice. As I said at the talk page, "WP:IAR applies. If a perfectly good tool is available for use, and an ArbCom sanctions regime gives an administrator the power to do whatever he needs to do to halt disruption, there is no reason for him not to use it, old RfC be damned". We're all aware of the disruption that has surrounded this article, and of the unique nature of its circumstance. If a tool that has not been tried before is available to stop disruption, it should be used. I'm really saddened by the filer's behaviour, because he is filing it to make a point. As he said at Mr Mitchell's talk page, "It shouldn't be used because it adds to stratification among editors. It says that those with the reviewer right are first class wikipedians who get to decide what the content of the article is and everyone else just makes suggestions". These kind of political positions, which he has taken, have no relevance in this particular case. Preventing BLP violations is an imperative, as is curtailing disruption. Let's not start attacking the people that keep our encyclopaedia intact, as was done during the GG case. RGloucester 22:03, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Masem

I see no reason to remove the current use of pending changes/semi-prot on this article based on past behaviors all around per the ArbCom case. The GG situation will continue to remain a hotbed for some time, and given there continues to be evidence of off-site organized attempts to affect this article from multiple areas, this maintains reasonable order. --MASEM (t) 22:14, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Avono

The protection should stay per WP:IAR as the it intended to prevent disruption and is more practical than a fully protected article.Avono (talk) 22:18, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by AtomsOrSystems

I agree with everything said above by RGloucester, Masem and Avono. The article is still a source of considerable interest from a variety of sources, both within and outside Wikipedia. It seems to me that full protection would be overly restrictive, while semi-protection wouldn't offer enough, well, protection. PC2 appears to offer a good balance.
I think it's also worth noting that I personally have had no sense of "stratification" among the editors of the article based on the implementation of PC2 (or anything else, for that matter). AtomsOrSystems (talk) 22:31, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Parabolist

I agree with the majority here about the PC2 protection on the article, but I feel this might be a good time to ask: With PC2 doing this good work, do we really also need it to be under 1RR?

It hasn't exactly been a problem yet, but considering that one of the big factors in this whole debacle has been the nigh-endless horde of gamergate supporters ready to throw themselves into the grinder, it seems like 1RR could end up being a hindrance to a minority of legitimate editors.

Statement by (involved editor 2)

Discussion among uninvolved editors about the appeal by Obsidi

  • A few factual notes here.
    • There are, at this writing, over 7700 individuals with permissions that allow them to "review" pending changes. This encompasses the majority of Wikipedians who were active editors at the time pending changes was first adopted for its trial run, all administrators, and anyone who has been granted the permission since the first trial.
    • Any of those individuals can accept changes, and none of their edits require pending changes review.
    • Several of the individuals recently sanctioned by the Arbitration Committee in relation to this topic area hold permissions that will allow them to edit without being subject to pending changes review and can also accept/decline pending changes.
    • Although PC2 is essentially not permitted by policy, there have been a few very specific exceptions to date. To the best of my knowledge, they have all been discussed at an appropriate noticeboard and the exception has received consensus. Although in this case there has not been such a discussion, I think it is probably reasonable to assume that if such a discussion was held, there would be community approval for this application. After all, the community had already approved exceptional action in this topic area long, long before the Arbcom case.
  • My own opinion is that, while it may restrict some accounts from directly editing the article, we already know that editors who hold the necessary permissions have been sanctioned for their actions by Arbcom, community sanctions, or other processes in relation to this topic area. It also invites any editor with the necessary permission to review the edit and accept it, whether or not they have fully reviewed the talk page for consensus, or are aware of the subtle and creeping nature of some of the changes that have been proposed. Remember that essentially only vandalism or obvious BLP violations can be flat-out rejected, under the pending changes policy; the vast majority of edits being proposed through PC should actually be accepted. I would actually prefer seeing full protection of the article over PC2, so that it does retain the high level of control that is probably needed at this point; PC2 just isn't strong enough, because it still allows a lot of editors to make modifications without requiring consensus. Risker (talk) 05:19, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

Statement by Peter Isotalo

I would gladly support full protection, but only when or if all-out edit war breaks out. I'm not a fan of preemptive protection, especially with articles that are being watched by so many experienced users. Peter Isotalo 12:18, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

Result of the appeal by Obsidi

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.

I am inclined to accept HJ Mitchell's statement and decision in this case. It appears not to have been taken lightly, and at first glance HJ Mitchell seems to be putting in a dedicated effort to make pending changes work with this particular article. Balancing the desire to leave as many of our pages open to contributions from as many people as possible (the first sentence, after all, of Wikipedia:Protection policy) with the strict requirement to prevent the publication of defamatory, harrassing, or otherwise damaging content about living persons (WP:BLP) is sometimes quite difficult. HJ Mitchell's choice seems to strike a balance for this specific unusual circumstance; it's an application of WP:IAR in the way it is intended.

Beyond the philosophical objection, is there evidence to indicate that PC2 is not working correctly or is being abused in some way? Looking at the logs, PC2 has been in place for five days now; has it made things better or worse than they were before? Obviously I would support lifting PC2 (or converting it to some other form of protection, now or in a future appeal) if there were evidence to indicate that it was detrimental. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 23:15, 31 January 2015 (UTC)

Nothing has been presented to demonstrate how removing PC2 would benefit the article or the encyclopedia. Months of contentious editing, general sanctions, and a hotly disputed ArbCom case have proven that the normal way of doing things is inadequate in this case, so merely saying "we're not supposed to do this" is insufficient here. Besides, as ToAT said, is there any evidence that it's not working or being abused? Given all of this, I see no reason not to support HJ Mitchell's action here. Gamaliel (talk) 03:38, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

I see bureaucratic arguments in favour of removing the protection, but not pragmatic ones (other than Risker's argument). Is it hurting the project? Is it helping? Guettarda (talk) 05:45, 1 February 2015 (UTC)

  • Decline appeal. Apart from the beaurocratic reason to grant the appeal I see no reason to remove PC2, regarding Risker's point if PC2 does end up working then it can full protected later at the moment I'm not seeing a justification for it. One thing I will say though is that I don't believe that invocations of IAR should not be protected as discretionary sanctions but rather should allow other admins to modify them if they don't believe that there is sufficient justification for them, however that is person opinion and not a reason to decline the appeal. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 13:48, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
  • Oddly enough, WP:AC/DS#Page restrictions allows only "semi-protection, full protection, move protection, revert restrictions, and prohibitions on the addition or removal of certain content (except when consensus for the edit exists)", which doesn't include pending changes. While the PC2 protection is probably a valid invocation of IAR, it is not currently an allowed discretionary sanction. That said, its omission from the list is probably an oversight, as I don't seem to remember any discussion related to this (pinging Roger Davies to confirm). We may want to request an amendment from arbcom to allow pending changes protection as a DS. T. Canens (talk) 15:13, 1 February 2015 (UTC)


This request may be declined without further action if insufficient or unclear information is provided in the "Request" section below.
Requests may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs (not counting required information), except by permission of a reviewing administrator.

Request concerning Gouncbeatduke

User who is submitting this request for enforcement 
WarKosign (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) 08:31, 1 February 2015 (UTC)
User against whom enforcement is requested 
Gouncbeatduke (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Search DS alerts: in user talk history • in system log

Sanction or remedy to be enforced
Diffs of edits that violate this sanction or remedy, and an explanation how these edits violate it 

The user repeatedly behaved in uncivil manner towards me, bordering on personal attacks. Any attempt to reach a conesnsus was ignored and responded by edit warring, often in seeming teaming with a similar minded editor. The user demonstrates battleground mentality, treats every user in disagreement as an "anti-Arab POV-pusher".

Here are examples from a single discussion/edit war in the lead of Israel. I understand that you will not go into a content dispute, the content is only mentioned to explain the user conduct.

  • GregKaye added a {{cn}} tag to a statement about Israel's declaration of independence in the lead of Israel (that the borders of Israel were not specified) and wikilinked to the UN partition plan that did specify the borders. I provided the missing source that proved that the declaration intentionally did not mention the borders suggested by the partition plan and removed the wikilink that this source proved irrelevant.
  • Gouncbeatduke replaced the statement with another that is not supported by the source and is relevant to the UN partition plan, not to the declaration of independence. Edit summary was "(replace POV-pushing with NPOV version of article cited)". I reverted this edit with "Factually incorrect - UN revision plan suggested borders for "a" state, not "the" state that was declared", GregKaye un-reverted the edit without any comment.
  • Gouncbeatduke created a talk page section named "Edit warring by WarKosign", incorrectly stating that I've twice reverted the article (actually one edit and one revert), that I removed all references to the UN partition plan (actually it remained referenced two sentences above) and that I was "pushing" a certain version (actually the stable version that existed before their edits). I responded explaining my edits, Gouncbeatduke dismissed my explanation with "I think we both know you are misrepresenting your edits." and wrote that my version was less NPOV (without giving any reason).
  • I renamed the talk page section to more appropriate "Relevance of United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine to borders of Israel" and continued discussing the content with GregKaye and other editors. The only contribution from Gouncbeatduke was accusing me of "regurgitating the anti-Arab narrative" and saying that "current version of the article is a much more NPOV", again without any usable explanation.
  • After some more discussion I made (what I consider) a compromise edit and asked the editors to comment on it. Gouncbeatduke reverted the edit commenting "returning to last good version prior to User:WarKosign multiple edit warring reverts", renamed the talk page section back to "Edit Warring by User:WarKosign" and moved a statement together with an unrelated quote, effectively restoring half of my compromise edit while removing a relevant source and introducing another source misrepresentation.
  • I added a tag for Gouncbeatduke source misrepresentation and wrote on the user's talk page asking to remove the attack in the talk page section name. The user responded again accusing me of edit warring and pov-pushing without any actual details, and refused to change the section name. Note that the user actually renamed the section on their own talk page, demonstrating understanding of how take page section names matter. Eventually GregKaye renamed the section to something more appropriate.
  • The user removed the misrepresentation tag while leaving the misrepresentation, with the comment saying "Please discuss in talk section before reverting again" (so far I reverted once in the whole discussion, while Gouncbeatduke reverted at least 3 times). The user insists to keep dispute tags for other matters, so they clearly understand their importance.
  • The discussion continued for a while then Gouncbeatduke "contributed" another baseless accusation. I expected the user to understand the uncivility of such accusation after having explained it on their talk page, so I asked the user to retract the statement, with no response so far.
Diffs of previous relevant sanctions, if any 
If discretionary sanctions are requested, supply evidence that the user is aware of them (see WP:AC/DS#Awareness and alerts)
  • Alerted about discretionary sanctions in the area of conflict in the last twelve months, see the system log linked to above.
Additional comments by editor filing complaint 

I think the user is well-intended but unready to collaborate. They seem to think that NPOV is some magic word, once they say it everybody is obliged to accept whatever unexplained and unsourced edits they make. The best possible outcome of this request would be to have the user drop battleground mentality and collaborate in order to achieve their stated goal of NPOV.

Notification of the user against whom enforcement is requested 


Discussion concerning Gouncbeatduke

Statements must be made in separate sections. They may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs, except by permission of a reviewing administrator.
Administrators may remove or shorten noncompliant statements. Disruptive contributions may result in blocks.

Statement by Gouncbeatduke

Statement by (username)

Result concerning Gouncbeatduke

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the section above.