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User:Jason Quinn

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Unified login: Jason Quinn is the unique login of this user for all public Wikimedia projects.
About me
Wikipedia-logo-v2-en.svgThis user is one of the 2000 most active English Wikipedians of all time.
Editor - rhodium star III.jpgThis editor is a Senior Editor III
and is entitled to display this
Rhodium Editor Star.
Noia 64 apps karm.svg This user has been on Wikipedia for 15 years, 9 months and 3 days.
Wikipedia Administrator.svgThis user has been an admin for
6 years, 10 months and 5 days.
35,000+This user has made more than 35,000 contributions to Wikipedia.
Symbol support vote.svgThis user helped promote the article The Great Gatsby to good article status.
Million award logo.svgThis user won the Million Award for bringing The Great Gatsby to Good Article status.
PhDThis user has a Doctor of Philosophy degree.
Wormhole jet.jpgThis user's favorite subject is physics.
This user is an expert mathematician.
Face-smile.svgThis user welcomes new users with Twinkle!
This user is a member of the
Wikipedia Typo Team.
Writing Magnifying.PNGThis user is a member of
the Guild of Copy Editors.
Symbol redirect arrow with gradient.svgThis user is a participant in WikiProject Redirect.
Wikignome crop.gifThis editor is a WikiGnome.
CThis user can program in C.
JavaThis user can program in Java.
<html>This user can write HTML.
cssThis user can write Cascading Style Sheets.
TeXThis Wikipedian is a TeX user.
Roman denarius in silver (Maximinus)-transparent.pngThis user is interested in coin collecting.
3-ball cascade movie.gifThis user enjoys juggling.
NotCommons-emblem-copyrighted.svgThis user respects copyright and other intellectual property rights.
NewTux.svgThis user contributes using Linux.
Free and open-source software logo (2009).svgThis user supports free software.
Parent-left child-right yellow-background.svgThis user has adopted the typo "currrent" to nurture.

Comments, compliments, or inquiries may be left at my talk page.


For some reason or another you want to know more about me. Well, the userboxes on the right tell you some of my interests. The rest of this pages just talks about what I do at Wikipedia and why and collects various thoughts I have about the project. I like helping other editors, especially beginners, so if you have any questions, feel free to ask.

Why do I edit Wikipedia?[edit]

Because I love it! Wikipedia has become an indispensable resource for modern life. Not only does Wikipedia serve to settle bar bets, provide ordinary people with a wide range of health and legal information, and help us learn about our favorite books and movies, it has become a major driving force behind forefront research. Scientists and academics from all over the world consult it everyday and it helps them solve problems and make connections they otherwise might not make. Besides that, Wikipedia helps educate and inform people ranging from schoolchildren to curious adults or people living in countries where access to free information cannot be taken for granted. In other words, Wikipedia is helping make the world better! Who doesn't want to help make the world better? It feels great to know I contributed to something that will hopefully exist forever as a literary monument of what we can achieve together.

My editing style[edit]

I am a wiki-gnome who prefers to make small corrections to articles. I occasionally combat vandalism or might start a new article. I love correcting mistakes in references, because they are otherwise difficult to detect, and I frequently consult WorldCat and Google Book Search to confirm my edits. I also do a lot of copyediting.

My editing style changes with time and goes through phases that can last for months or even years.

The gnome in me[edit]

I largely fix things that many other editors ignore. I fix spelling and grammar. I copy-edit pages to fix references, section structure, formating and so forth. Sometimes I will just click the "random" page until I find some page that has obvious problems which I then fix. I once scrubbed the encyclopedia categories contaminated by user pages. This turned out to be a lot more interesting than it might sound, as it discovers some really shady user accounts and some very friendly new users who just need some help learning the ropes.

Whenever I edit a page, I usually spell-check the entire article while I am there. I use the native spell-checker of Firefox with American, British, Australian, and Canadian dictionaries. Multiple dictionaries are very valuable to an editor and I strongly encourage you to install them (but note that they aren't gospel when it comes to defining the dialect, so use caution). I always try to verify that a misspelling isn't a sic (e.g., in quotes) and include a sic notice if it is.

I like to change curly apostrophes and quotes (’ “ ”) to straight ones (' " "). The curly ones aren't forbidden but the straight ones are recommended. See MOS:QUOTEMARKS.

At one time or another, I have nearly or completely purged Wikipedia of the following spelling errors: currrent, Mississipi, improvment/improvments, athelets, Detriot, Philidelphia, Anerica, Willliam, entertianment, oponent, sweetner/sweetners, acoording, guarenteed, repsond, quikc, wresting (for "wrestling"), relaese, esential, referece/refereces, graudate/graudates/graudated/graudating/graudation, privledge/privledges/privledged, and many, many more. Many errors have since returned. Oh well, I'll return to them some other day.

An arch-nemesis of mine is the use of "it's" as a possessive. This isn't a job a bot can do because you must read the context to know whether to make a change. I've fixed many instances of this and there are probably tens of thousands more corrections to make, so you could help out. The rule is simple: "it's" always means "it is" or "it has" and never indicates possession.

I pride myself on the idea that just about all these types of contributions go straight towards making Wikipedia better. If two editors rewrite a biography article, it is a matter of taste which version is better, but if I fix all the spelling mistakes they left and bad URLs in their references, it is unquestionably an improvement.

Important topics[edit]

In terms on topics, I have a few that grab me.

I focus a lot of my effort on articles for vulnerable, threatened, endangered, and recently extinct animals. This includes my wikignome-like editing as well as adding and improving references. It's not a lot but helping spread good information via quality articles may help in their conservation.

The rest include things like math and computer science articles, dystopia science fiction, a few geography special interests, and so on.

Mediawiki bugs[edit]

Occasionally I find little bugs in the Mediawiki software that Wikipedia uses (see Special:Version). I first noticed and reported that the "my contributions" hyperlink was not bold when selected (earth-shattering!) and I am currently trying to get a categories bug fixed. If you find any bugs, you can report them at the Mediawiki Bugzilla.

Some things I've done that have shaped Wikipedia[edit]

Useful links for Wikipedia editors[edit]

Some thoughts on Wikipedia-related issues[edit]

Having been on Wikipedia for a while now, I've started to form my own opinions about certain policies. Here is an explanation of some of my views:

  • The VisualEditor is the latest WMF turkey in the oven. I've been against it for a long time. Predictably it was revoked upon first introduction. The problem with the VE is that Wikipedia is fundamentally a text-based system because of all the complicated things like references and templates. When you start adding functionality to VE to handle those, you get something complicated and convoluted. VE is supposed to make it easier to edit but when I use it for all but the most trivial things, it's so confusing I can't figure it out. I have 30+ years of experience using computers. If I get confused using it, it's a dud.
  • The Article Feedback Tool (AFT) in all its versions is a failure. Everything about this project has been done wrong, starting with its conception. AFT had "trial" phases. These were not good faith trials. The tool received large amounts of negative community feedback. Skeptical editor's concerns were whitewashed or just ignored. This tool seemed pre-determined to become part of the Wikipedia and is best viewed as WMF fiat. The subsequent deployments have been a lesson on how not to introduce new features. Design issues that should have been glaringly obvious — like how to interpret the data generated by the tool — ended up sinking whole versions. This is a disturbing lack of foresight. The subsequent deployment of multiple versions simultaneously has caused a very confusing state of affairs. Consistency is important to the usability of any program or website. Whoever is pulling the strings about AFT doesn't know this. It's not even clear if the word "versions" is appropriate to the various incarnations of AFT. The AFT experiments have been underway now for years. No investigation has been made to see if this tool is beneficial. A person can see quite easily that the feedback is generating a cesspool of garbage typed by the functionally illiterate. Virtually all of these comments are ignored. A very low percentage are deemed "helpful". All AFT ended up doing is adding cruft to the articles that almost nobody uses, and when they do, it contributes almost nothing but noise to the discussion. The feedback comments themselves show users lack an understanding how the tool is meant to function. It's time to remove this pointless "tool" from Wikipedia.
Artículo bueno.svg I was right. After a lot of discussion. The community eventually pressured the WMF to change the tool to "opt-in" and were successful.
I was doubly right, this tool was discontinued in March of 2014.
  • User:Jason Quinn/NPOV is a problem for images, an essay I wrote (draft)
  • User:Jason Quinn/The "Your edits will just get reverted by elite editors" Myth, another essay I wrote (early draft)
  • People who incriminate Wikipedia as "unreliable" are dinosaurs who do not understand it, often have never used it, and certainly do not understand its inner workings. As has been demonstrated again and again, Wikipedia is reliable and so long as you use a little bit of common sense when reading the articles, you'll find it a great resource. See Reliability of Wikipedia.
  • The Wikimedia Foundation needs to stop trying to find problems with its editors and instead focus on fixing problems that editors identify. There's only so many times Foundation members can talk about eliminating sexism or hostile behavior before they are in effect accusing members of being sexist or hostile. This is far out of touch with our actual community and their statements seem born of out a lack of understanding about how online communities function. I think the Foundation's focus on chasing ghost issues is starting to harm the encyclopedia as their comments are starting to be reflected in the attitudes expressed by the public.
  • I am against the customization of user signatures. Customized signatures are distracting on talk pages and interrupt the flow of conversation. Allowing user signatures causes people to invent hideously gaudy signatures in an attempt to out-do others. I have not seen even a single customized signature where I thought it added to the discussion. (see Wikipedia:Signatures)
    • I no longer care so much about personalized signatures. I still prefer when people use the default but I've learned to live with the occasional awful and distracting signature.
  • I strongly encourage users to edit their user pages sparingly. Every edit of a user page takes up storage and bandwidth. A good user page tells other editors about you so they can judge the quality of your edits. Your user page is not meant to be a MySpace substitute. If your user page edits rivals or exceeds your article page edits, you are abusing the feature. To some extent there are rules about what is appropriate for user pages but for obvious reasons they are tough to enforce. (see Wikipedia:User page)
  • I have mixed feelings about userboxes. As with user pages themselves, user boxes are appropriate when they inform others about your background to help gauge the quality of your edits. Do you have a degree? Worth a userbox. Are you an expert at karate or on moths? Use a userbox. Do you have a favorite food or color? Probably not worth a userbox. See the difference? (see Wikipedia:Userboxes)
  • I use my real name for my Wikipedia account. I wish the practice were more widespread. Handles were cool in the 80's and cute in the 90's but the Internet has grown up now. Real names add an air of respectability that contribute positively to Wikipedia's acceptance and image. If (and only if) you understand the privacy concerns, consider using your real name instead of a handle. Wouldn't you prefer people credit your name for your contributions rather than "TurkeyChucker83282"? I thought so. It also helps in the maintenance of the encyclopedia. When I scan history pages to find a vandal edit, I can usually be sure that those who used their real names were not the culprit thus saving me from having to view their diff. (See also Wikipedia:Username#Real names, Wikipedia:On privacy, confidentiality and discretion, and Wikipedia:How to not get outed on Wikipedia)
    • I've changed my mind about this. Anonymity is better. Jason Quinn (talk) 07:59, 10 November 2019 (UTC)
  • I wish that editors as a whole would be more strict regarding what and who qualifies as notable. In my opinion, Wikipedia currently suffers from too many articles on obscure sports players and musicians but because some fly-by-night newspaper or two once wrote about them, their notability passes the editor groupthink. There is an unfair bias in the way Wikipedia handles notability. A person can be considered notable according to the guidelines for having once played for a few games in some low-level soccer match in some third world country yet many professors at large universities would have trouble passing the notability guidelines. Fixing this is an almost impossible task but I think bringing it to editors' attention at least helps a bit. (see Wikipedia:Notability)
    • Wow, some work has been done to study this. Includes some comments extremely close to what I wrote. I wonder if they read this.

Image gallery[edit]

I have contributed photos to Wikipedia. Here is a sampling of them:

Awards and barnstars[edit]

Featured article star.svg

User:Jason Quinn has been identified as an Awesome Wikipedian,
and therefore, I've officially declared today as Jason Quinn's day!
For being such a beautiful person and great Wikipedian,
enjoy being the Star of the day, dear Jason Quinn!

00:05, 31 May 2010 (UTC)

A record of your Day will always be kept here.

Original Barnstar Hires.png The Original Barnstar
Pour ce patrouilleur magnifique un merci pour tes corrections en langue anglaise, For your correction of the Centre Étienne Desmarteau' page. Bravo and thanks. Étienne Desmarteau" תודה על העבודה שלך --Cordialement féministe ♀ Cordially feminist Geneviève (talk) 22:07, 23 February 2012 (UTC)
WikiProject Arkansas Barnstar.png The Great Arkansas Barnstar
For you efforts at correcting my spellin and other errors in Arkansas Civil War Unit Articles, Thanks! Aleutian06 (talk) 03:52, 27 February 2012 (UTC)
SpecialBarnstar.png The Special Barnstar
Thank you so much for working on the Adopt A Typo project. When I started it, I had so much more time to devote. I have often in the last six months or so felt quite guilty that I was not actively maintaining or pursuing the project. You have taken my flare for the dramatic and distilled it for actual value. WELL DONE!

P.S. What do you intend to do with the Userboxes? Majestic PyreMy Speech Bubble 06:41, 3 March 2012 (UTC)

Real Life Barnstar.jpg The Real Life Barnstar
Hey, Jason! Thanks for coming to the Masterpiece Museum editathon! It was really great having you here! For your contributions to our meetup I bequeath to you the Real Life Barnstar. Lisa Marrs User talk:Lisa_N_Marrs 23:47, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Barnstar of Diligence Hires.png The Barnstar of Diligence
Thank you for the numerous contributions you've made Wikipedia since March 2004! Unforgettableid (talk) 16:41, 7 March 2013 (UTC)
Barnstar Typo Team.png The Typo Team Barnstar
I was going to nominate you as the Editor of the Week, but they only accept non-admins. So, instead, I hereby give you this barnstar! You do a lot of work behind the scenes that keeps the Typo Team running, and I am shocked (Shocked, I tell you!) that no one's given you one of these already. Sophus Bie (talk) 06:52, 21 May 2013 (UTC)
Brilliant Idea Barnstar Hires.png What a Brilliant Idea Barnstar
Your proposal with regard to {{Family tree}} was excellent. Thank you for following it through with a talk page discussion and the note on the template itself. The "brilliance" was as much in the execution as the idea. Keep up the great work! Stalwart111 04:15, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

Admin statistics
Action Count
Edits 37716
Edits+Deleted 39322
Pages deleted 50
Revisions deleted 10
Pages restored 3
Pages protected 3
Pages unprotected 2
Protections modified 2
Users blocked 24
Users reblocked 4
Users unblocked 1