Wikipedia talk:Avoid the word "vandal"

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In general I would agree with this. However, I would point out that POV-pushing most certainly could be construed as "any addition, removal, or change of content made in a deliberate attempt to compromise the integrity of Wikipedia". Wikipedia's integrity is definitely compromised by POV-pushing. I wouldn't call it vandalism the first time, but persistent and blatant POV-pushing is vandalism. Necrothesp 12:34, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

I agree with this. I would rather let some true vandals escape that label than accidentally brand a good-faith editor a vandal. Wikipedians, in general, do tend to overuse the word; I know I would hate to be called a vandal for making an honest mistake. Quaerere 22:06, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

I understand the frustration associated with POV-pushing, but I disagree that it is necessarily vandalism, since it is not categorically a deliberate attempt to compromise the integrity of Wikipedia. I do agree, however, that it qualifies as Wikipedia:Disruptive editing and, if informal dispute resolution is tried and failed and involved editors become exhausted, then the invitation to the specific editor to "edit this page" may be revoked whether or not any of his or her edits qualify as vandalism. --Iamunknown 22:17, 5 April 2007 (UTC)
Editing from a POV is not vandalism... persistant POV pushing is. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Blueboar (talkcontribs) 23:27, 5 April 2007 (UTC).
We need a word like "vandalism" to refer only to "a deliberate attempt to compromise the integrity of Wikipedia", and a true believer, no matter how crazy, doesn't fit that description. He's "compromising the integrity", but it isn't "a deliberate attempt" because his goal is to spread his version of Truth. He must be resisted using other policies, but confusing him with vandals just confuses the issue of how to deal with him. Art LaPella 01:05, 6 April 2007 (UTC)
Agreed, and hopefully this essay reminds us that a smaller class subset of Wikipedians are vandals than are currently accused of such. More people are out there to good, albeit in what we consensually agree to be a mis-guided fashion, than we currently credit. --Iamunknown 04:01, 6 April 2007 (UTC) (Ugh, I don't intend to create a class distinction between editors and vandals. -- 04:39, 6 April 2007 (UTC))

(unindent) While agree that the term vandal is overused particularly in the context of content disputes I do think the distinction with regards egregious and habitual POV pushers is hair splitting. Whether an extreme POV pusher is called vandal or disruptive is not relevant. Either way they are not working towards the betterment of the project and if they do not mend their ways they will have to leave. If after pointing out to an extreme POV pusher the correct way to procced in advancing their version of the truth (whatever that is) they still persist in editing outside consensus and without discussion I really do not think it is terribly incivil to call them a vandal instead of disruptive. --DSRH |talk 19:49, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

I don't call an extreme POV pusher a vandal for the same reason I don't call an arsonist a thief. Not because one name is more civil than another, but because it's confusing, and it interferes with developing procedures that handle various types of bad guys. A POV pusher can be asked to compromise for the greater good of Wikipedia; a vandal doesn't care about Wikipedia. We all agree extreme POV pushers may need to be banned (although of course we don't always agree on who the POV pushers are). Art LaPella 04:18, 7 April 2007 (UTC)

Vandals, Goths, and Wends[edit]

I am surprised that vandal is considered catchy. The Vandals, Goths, and Wends were peoples who invaded the Roman Empire. Only one of these tribal names has survived to commemorate the damage they wrought on the empire. --Ancheta Wis 10:40, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

Well, there were plenty of barbarian tribes that invaded the Roman Empire besides those three. Some include the Berbers, Huns, Franks, Lombardi, Burgundi, Alemanni, Slavs, Avars, Saxons, Angles, Jutes, Picts, Scots, Sarmatians, Sassanids, Celts, Roxolani, and the Alans. As you can see, there are plenty of other tribes to choose from. However, the Vandals were so well known for wonton destruction, that it is suspected that their very name became related with destruction itself thus giving birth to the term "vandal". Captain panda 03:03, 7 April 2007 (UTC)
Not really. The ethnic slur came first, in the 18th century, and the rationale came later; the Vandals weren't associated with wanton destruction in Late Antiquity. I don't think there's any appropriate place for an ethnic slur in Wikipedia policy anyway. Jacob Haller 18:37, 5 October 2007 (UTC)

Vandal is as vandal does[edit]

Why should we avoid the word when it's what is being done? If people didn't vandalize, they wouldn't be called vandals. Corvus cornix 22:31, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

Except that fewer people than you think actually vandalise....that is the whole point of the essay. --Iamunknown 22:09, 8 April 2007 (UTC)
Agreed. The point seems to be that people shouldn't knee-jerk and call someone's edit vandalism just because they don't agree with it, etc. And also errors do occur in people's edits. However there are plenty of occasions where bad faith is obvious and calling a vandal a vandal is completely justified. I've reverted thousands of vandalism edits, and it's been pretty unambiguous in every case. There's little doubt that someone replacing the contents of an article with the word "poo", for example, can't be mistaken for a good faith error! 23skidoo (talk) 22:14, 10 May 2008 (UTC)

Why just "essay"[edit]

In my opinion, this should be merely an essay, without anything about interpreting WP:VANDAL; it's not just an interpretation of that policy, but a logical result of Wikipedia:No Personal Attacks, filtered through the definitions of Wikipedia:Vandalism. Any interpretation wording has to take that fact into account. Thanks, Luc "Somethingorother" French 10:45, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

I did it, but not with "legalist" reasons in mind. I'm not implying that along "policy, guideline, essay" we have a new entity "interpretation essay" or anything remotely similar. I just found out that VERY often an expert Wikipedian directs a novice one to an instructional page ("Go read WP:ATWV"). Now, if this novice follows the link, the first thing it says is "this is just an essay, you may safely ignore it, but obey policies". Pure confusion. I think it is much better to inform reader at this point where exactly is a policy/guideline they should follow. They can compare points here and there by themselves and confusion disappears. This is why I've added "interpret=" parameter to {{essay}} today. --Kubanczyk (talk) 12:04, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
Oh, and your main point. This page surely is based on both WP:NPA and WP:VANDAL. But in my view this is much closer to the latter. In fact this is trivial, non-controversial comment on the following part of WP:VANDAL#How not to respond to vandalism:
You will not find such precise point on WP:NPA. --Kubanczyk (talk) 12:15, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
This essay is still a logical result of No Personal Attacks, as well as the definitions laid out in WP:VANDAL, even if it has a parallel in the text of WP:VANDAL itself; to claim that it derives only from VANDAL is to leave out a significant dependency. Thanks, Luc "Somethingorother" French 11:05, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
OK, this is a minor issue really. --Kubanczyk (talk) 20:32, 29 May 2008 (UTC)