|Il existe dans la Nature des arbres grands et petits, et diverses plantes médicinales. Et leurs noms, leurs formes, leurs caractéristiques, sont différentes. Il apparaît quelque nuage dans le ciel, celui-ci s'épaissit progressivement et la pluie commence ensuite à tomber.
A picture by User:Koyaanis Qatsi
I discovered Wikipedia somewhere in january or february 2002, but stayed anonymous for quite a while...
When I finally created a user page, here is what I first wrote on it :
- When I discovered Wikipedia a few months ago, I felt I was brought back in the past, when Internet was still very much in the hands of whoever had the chance to be connected. How exhilarating it was !
- These past years, I felt the net had somehow lost some of its shine, too many professional and commercial sites, too much advertising, too many people wandering on forums, talking about what professionals made them talk, too many copyrights...loss of freshness, loss of spontaneity, relative passivity, endless wandering in search of kindred souls.
- And I ended here :-) Found a diamond partially out of its gangue, slowly but surely being cut by hundred of artists. Earth hosts many jewels!
- On this side, I am maybe more one of the future 3 billion users/readers. But sometimes, I feel like a user must not be only a reader. My hand quivers a lot while I try to shape the crystal. Sorry about that. Please be very bold while copyediting me :-)
Perhaps could I explain better what delighted me...
Those who left
«Douceur, lorsque les vents soulèvent la mer immense,
d'observer du rivage le dur effort d'autrui,
non que le tourment soit jamais un doux plaisir
mais il nous plaît de voir à quoi nous échappons.»
- De la Nature. Titus Lucretius Carus, dit LUCRÈCE
May they sail far away, if they want it. But may they forget the bad moments and the people they fought with, only to remember the people they made a team with, and the result of collective work.
I hope they look at us sometimes, and do not keep bad feelings. I hope they feel they did good, and left with the inner satisfaction of having contributed to world peace.
I would wish this project, not to be only an encyclopedic one, but also a community project. I am quite impressed by the encyclopedic one, even if there is still a lot of way from the goal. I am not in a hurry. I am less impressed by the community project, but hopefully, with efforts, we can improve.
I will remember.
Let's expand our time horizons from a few hours or days to a few years. What will Wikipedia be then ? Who will be the reader ? What will be required for the encyclopedia to grow, expand, stabilize ?
If you feel bad *right now*, if you feel reverting an article three times, posting an offensive comment, putting someone on the list of problematic users, calling for a ban, screaming your lungs off, please refrain. Try to descalate the conflict. Perhaps just forget to answer. Close the browser. Have a good drink, head for sleep. Come back tomorrow. Neither the article, nor the opponent will disappear. There is time. And remember to apology to the one you wish to keep at work with.
If you feel the project is eating your life, try to cut one hour a day from your contribution time. Go to your bed, switch of the lights, close your eyes, and try to figure what is missing in your life, and what wikipedia is bringing you. You may take a week off to give you time to think. The project will manage without you. If it does not, then *you* as an individual have too much impact. You are too important. It is not good. If the project does manage without you, it will be proof enough you are not that necessary. It will give you space to breathe.
If you feel the project is going in the wrong direction, take a long break. Think about what could be a lever on it. And then come back and try if you think it worth. If it is too late already, it won't change much that you take many weeks to do so. If it is not, better prepare carefully. There is time.
How many hours did we spend in the past month, complaining about a user, asking for this one to "please behave", for that one to be banned. How many times did we attack another editor, how many times did we bash our favorite cible ?
Versus, how many times did we say to someone our appreciation, how much we were happy he was there, how precious his participation was, how much his involvement in a conflict was welcome, how pleasant a fellow he is, what a good work he made in his last article ?
Let's expand our caring horizon. Let's try to forget a bit about the complains we have, and remember to thank people for existing and being there. We work together with the same goal, we could also appreciate us more as collaborators.
And it is so much nicer in the long run to remember the compliments we gave rather than the offenses.
- I'd like to take a pledge, for any harsh comment I will make, I will say what gave me happiness, and be thankful.
For any article you vote to delete, vote one to keep, or improve one which is on the border of being thrown in the bin.
Stay a learner
Remember you are not here only to teach others, but to learn as well. When you do not know, do not bluff, do not freeze, but recognise you do not know, and learn. Learn by trying. Experiment, make mistakes. Even if that gets you insults. Better to try and fail, than just not doing anything. Even a negative stroke is better than no stroke at all. Remember to tell other people with friendliness when they made an error as well, and help then to correct themselves.
Pretending you are in control, when you are not is bad. You do not learn, and you do not even learn from your mistakes. Take small steps, monitor results. Admit mistakes. Embrace you errors.