User:EJF/RfA review

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A Review of the

Requests for Adminship Process



Reflect - (Stats)




The Review Process
Methodology - Discussion

Requests for Adminship

Welcome to the Question phase of RfA Review. We hope you'll take the time to respond to your questions in order to give us further understanding of what you think of the RfA process. Remember, there are no right or wrong answers here. Also, feel free to answer as many questions as you like. Don't feel you have to tackle everything if you don't want to.

In a departure from the normal support and oppose responses, this review will focus on your thoughts, opinions and concerns. Where possible, you are encouraged to provide examples, references, diffs and so on in order to support your viewpoint. Please note that at this point we are not asking you to recommend possible remedies or solutions for any problems you describe, as that will come later in the review.

If you prefer, you can submit your responses anonymously by emailing them to gazimoff (at) Anonymous responses will be posted as subpages and linked to from the responses section, but will have the contributor's details removed. If you have any questions, please use the talk page.

Once you've provided your responses, please encourage other editors to take part in the review. More responses will improve the quality of research, as well as increasing the likelihood of producing meaningful results.

Once again, thank you for taking part!


When thinking about the adminship process, what are your thoughts and opinions about the following areas:

  1. Candidate selection (inviting someone to stand as a candidate)
    If a user thinks that another editor is trustworthy and able enough to use the tools, go ahead and nom them—be bold, and all that. Unfortunately it can sometimes be a bit more difficult than that, as it seems a candidate who has less than 6 months editing/was blocked less than 6 months ago/has less than 3,246 edits is spat at.
  2. Administrator coaching (either formally or informally)
    Not really keen on coaching or mollycoddling. Sure, ask for advice, but there's no need to make hundreds of pointless posts on a mentor's talk page or coaching page. At the end of the day, we're here to build an encyclopaedia; RfA and adminship is not the be-all and end-all of editing here; if someone is so concerned about passing, reassessing his/her priorities on Wikipedia should be the step to take, not immersing oneself in more coaching so as to game the RfA system. Coaching encourages "editing for adminship", something to be avoided—is it worth spending all of one's time editing just to get a few buttons? Coaching targets like "make 50 AIV reports" or "comment on 40 AfDs" (usually contributions of the Delete per nom. ~~~~ variety) are not what Wikipedia is about.
  3. Nomination, co-nomination and self-nomination (introducing the candidate)
    A short nom is the best; an essay about how good the candidate is probably won't be read by many people. I don't care who nominated the candidate; a self-important nominator (example: "I nominated the candidate so he must be good") is a real turn-off. Co-noms are fine, assuming they are not just a one-sentence "Please support Steve, he's a great guy". Self-noms show boldness and some good administrators have applied for the tools in this way. Power-hungry self-noms aren't too common, and can be spotted from a mile away ("I will enjoy annoying vandals by blocking them", "As an administrator I will use my status as leverage in discussions"...)
  4. Advertising and canvassing
    Not a big of fan advertising and canvassing RfAs, although I wouldn't have as big a problem with canvassing if the canvasser left a comment in the "General comments" section stating who they had informed of the discussion. I'm most concerned with cabals groups of editors utilising off-wiki methods to canvass others to debates; banning from RfA would be a good deterrent against those who aim to manipulate the system.
  5. Debate (Presenting questions to the candidate)
    Ask as many questions as you want. Just don't expect the candidate to answer all of them; but if the candidate chooses not to answer them, it would be good courtesy to leave a message with the question-asker explaining why the questions were not answered.
  6. Election (including providing reasons for support/oppose)
    Unfortunately, occasionally some users appear at RfA to torpedo it, and will try to make the RfA fail by misrepresenting diffs and lying. There are some !voters who rapidly support/oppose candidates without investigating them. Some support all candidates per AGF. I have supported and opposed candidates for silly reasons before, we all do it; human error and misjudgements will always happen when a candidate is being appraised.
  7. Withdrawal (the candidate withdrawing from the process)
    There doesn't seem to be too much of a stigma regarding withdrawing from RfA, indeed some people see a mature, reasoned withdrawal as a good trait in a potential admin. Candidate withdrawal can be a problem when the candidate uses it as an excuse to rant about the process and the voters, and general sour grapes; however, this is a fairly rare occurrence.
  8. Declaration (the bureaucrat closing the application. Also includes WP:NOTNOW closes)
    (i)Is this the bit after the vote-counting? After the numbers are put into a calculator and the candidate gets over 73.5% (up to 5% lower if they are a "big name" and have influential fans) they are "promoted". Below 73.5% and they aren't. Or am I missing something?
    (ii) Generally, NOTNOW closes are not too problematic, and usually happen before too much of a pile-on has begun.
  9. Training (use of New Admin School, other post-election training)
    I have no problem with mentoring and new admin school-type courses at this stage. At least it gives a greater appearance of coaching to become an effective sysop, not to pass RfA. Having never undergone RfA or mentoring I can't really answer whether it is useful or not.
  10. Recall (the Administrators Open to Recall process)
    A good idea, in theory. AOR is effective, assuming that its participants don't shift the goalposts. Frivolous and bad faith recall attempts are sometimes made, abuse of the system in this way is unfortunate but inevitable. Recall in some shape or form is needed, as ArbCom aren't keen on desysopping poor admins.

When thinking about adminship in general, what are your thoughts and opinions about the following areas:

  1. How do you view the role of an administrator?
    A volunteer who has access to extra maintainance tools granted to him, after spending a week in the lions' den.
  2. What attributes do you feel an administrator should possess?
    Kind, helpful, civil, friendly, capable and judicious—or am I being unrealistic?

Finally, when thinking about Requests for Adminship:

  1. Have you ever voted in a request for Adminship? If so what was your experience?
    Yes, probably about once or twice a week. I can't remember ever being heckled for choosing to support or oppose, and any discussion has been reasonable.
  2. Have you ever stood as a candidate under the Request for Adminship process? If so what was your experience?
  3. Do you have any further thoughts or opinions on the Request for Adminship process?
    Not a great process, but seemingly necessary as there is no current alternative. I look forward to any reforms proposed thanks to this process.

Once you're finished...[edit]

Thank you again for taking part in this review of the Request for Adminship process. Now that you've completed the questionnaire, don't forget to add the following line of code to the bottom of the Response page by clicking this link and copying the following to the BOTTOM of the list.

* [[User:EJF/RfA review]] added by ~~~ at ~~~~~

Again, on behalf of the project, thank you for your participation.

This question page was generated by {{RFAReview}} at 15:41 on 13 June 2008.