User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 109

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I promised you that I would take the problems with the article NXIVM to the BLP noticeboard as you suggested and report back. So I'm reporting back.

I tried and failed. Actually it was the second time I'd tried to get help at the BLP noticeboard. The last time, in order to keep it from being auto-archived without a reply, I was reduced to repeating and adding little comments and the sound of crickets chirping and the lyrics to songs about stepping up and doing the right thing.

Please read this article and associated stuff from Forbes:

The cover:
Art work that went with the article:
Article and sidebars about other executive coaching programs:
First follow-up:
Second follow-up:

After having read the magazine, have a look at the description of the magazine article written by a NXIVM fan, here:


The point is to compare the two and match them if you don't think they match. Or to get someone else to do it. Or to say "yes, that's a fair description of the Forbes coverage, that's fine, I approve." They expected to have to work with others on compromise version, but no one said anything so it went into the article as they'd written it.

That's not all but enough for now. Chrisrus (talk) 16:50, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

I just posted to BLPN asking for more eyeballs on the issue. I will also look into it, but it will take me a couple of days at least.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:09, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Thanks! Chrisrus (talk) 17:10, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

advocacy re Richard O'Dwyer

As someone who strenuously opposed the political advocacy pursued by the Wikimedia Foundation early this year (I note that today the Guardian called it plainly saying that in January "With other senior editors, Wales set aside for the first time Wikipedia's vaunted principle of neutrality...") I commend your decision to take action on the O'Dwyer case as Wikipedia founder and respected opinion leader as opposed to (additionally) trying to light a fire under the editing community. Leading people from all walks of life as opposed to leading "Wikipedia's people" will of course mean that many Wikipedians will also follow but they will be the most motivated and interested in getting involved and those who aren't so motivated need not be concerned (this time).--Brian Dell (talk) 18:26, 24 June 2012 (UTC)

Indeed; spectacular. (talk) 19:39, 24 June 2012 (UTC)
I personally agree that the extradition treaty is unfair and needs to be changed on the British side but I'm hopeful we can avoid dragging the encyclopedia into it this time. I also liked the Guardian's characterization. Although Jimbo called on spirits from the vasty deep on SOPA to vote for the lockout (i.e. IPs who have not edited the site before or since), this time I don't think they will come if he calls them.--Wehwalt (talk) 08:22, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Please don't perpetuate this myth that the SOPA vote was carried by IPs. Go do the analysis.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:01, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
True, true, newly-established accounts did play their part. I wonder what the result would have been if the page had been semi-protected? Remember also, there is such a thing as the bandwagon effect which would not have taken place under such circumstances.--Wehwalt (talk) 10:21, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
In other words, you admit what you wrote above was misleading?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:38, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Not in the least. I do not see accounts registered by partisans as something which boosts your cause. That being said, I personally agree with your personal stance on the O'Dwyer case.--Wehwalt (talk) 11:02, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
It is misleading because you imply that regular users voted against the SOPA action, and it only carried due to anon ips or newly-established accounts. Go do the analysis!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:13, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
I said the bandwagon effect is also an issue. That means people don't like to vote against the flow of the stream, even if such stream is a few hundred one-off users. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go edit an article. I recommend it. Highly.--Wehwalt (talk) 15:18, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Positing that a form of groupthink took place as a result of manipulation by IPs and new accounts seems an extreme claim to make considering you bring no evidence (and exceptional claims require exceptional evidence). As a result there is no basis for insinuations or incivility (there is never a basis for incivility). IRWolfie- (talk) 15:37, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Bandwagon effect. Thank you for your advice however, and I have struck part of my comment that I did not feel, on consideration, was necessary.--Wehwalt (talk) 15:52, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
However, I would find the claim that the entry of hundreds of IPs, who came because of off-wiki solicitation, had no effect on the vote of members of the community, as extraordinary if not more.--Wehwalt (talk) 15:57, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Not in the way you might think. I've noticed the Wikipedians are resistant and sometimes slightly hostile to campaigns by "outsiders". --NeilN talk to me 16:52, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Such as which campaigns?--Wehwalt (talk) 17:46, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Choose virtually any controversial article primarily of interest to one group. But in any event, I'm glad you seem to have retracted the most extreme and false version of your claim. I'd encourage you to rethink the position that people outside the community ought not be allowed to participate because they might actually influence us, though. Losing a vote and then complaining that the vote was somehow wrong because it allowed a voice for the general public is... well, it isn't the kind of project I think we should strive to be.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 18:45, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Characterize it as you will. There's only be one claim made, and no retreat has been made: that the vote was heavily affected by outside people who have no other interest in the Wikipedia community, and that the heavy IP vote affected the community vote. Companies don't let customers vote at the shareholder's meetings unless they've bought in. And these, as far as we know, were not even customers.--Wehwalt (talk) 18:55, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────To which I say IPs are human too. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 19:40, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

Indeed. So are fishermen in Bangladesh. Also the English football team, very much so.--Wehwalt (talk) 19:52, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
From that essay: "They should register for an account (e.g. if they want to participate): No. You need to accept their contributions, heed their suggestions and participate in consensus building with them. There is no requirement for anyone to register for an account before they can participate in the building of this encyclopedia. There is, however, a requirement on you that you behave." Also, by criticizing the vote as being heavily influenced by IPs that don't have a real interest, whether that assertion is true or not, you're assuming bad faith on the part of those IPs that did participate. Therefore, you must demonstrate conclusive evidence that they did participate in bad faith, or you are violating WP:AGF. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 20:20, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Not at all. It is my opinion that they don't have a real interest. If they don't have a real interest, then they are voting in perfect good faith, but it behooves us to ask for a reasonable franchise if Jimbo goes for another lockout. Say the franchise we require for ArbCom elections, or for RfA. Nothing arduous. IPs vote from time to time, in utter good faith, at RfAs. However, they are indented because the community requires some commitment in order to pass on those in authority on WP who are subject to election. Forcing all editors off the site qualifies, in my view, as such a decision.--Wehwalt (talk) 21:03, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Many of the IPs voting may well have been regular users of Wikipedia rather than editors. Surely they have as much of a say as the people who edit? After all, the encyclopaedia isn't just for editors, it's for everyone. --  M2Ys4U (talk) 21:14, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps. I watch the Olympics, but they don't let me sit on the IOC. Anyway, I made my point early on, but carelessly allowed myself to be baited. Back to the uncompensated grind. Feel free to carry on. --Wehwalt (talk) 22:14, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Anyway, suffice it to say that the blackout wasn't popular with everyone. -Stevertigo (t | c) 22:37, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
It's Wikipedia. I don't think anything has ever been popular with everyone here. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 23:09, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
  • Personally I tend agree with Jimbo in many respects with regards to the O'Dwyer issue. The US continues to attempt to play the role of "world police enforcement" without regard to the sovereignty of other nations. That we would send our law enforcement after a young man that didn't host or post anything wrong - just links to sites which did - is a very Owellian fright. Amazing the weight that the privledged few in Hollywood can bring to bear (with their (m/b)illions of dollars) down upon some poor kid /outside/ the USA. Too bad our "officials" don't put that kind of effort into shutting down all the malware and scareware garbage afloat on the Internet.
Now - I'll also say that that Jimbo (and others) seem to have gotten a bit defensive in a rather harsh tone with Wehwalt here as well. Our (Wikipedia's) SOPA actions were not as universally "loved" as some would like to portray. And the fact that a lot of IP addys, SPA accounts, and out of the woodwork newly registered accounts posted "support" for the black-out is simply that ... a fact. Were they the majority? Did they turn the tide in consensus? To be honest, I don't know. I know it wouldn't be acceptable in a RfA, or XfD though. Personally I did support some sort of banner or click-thru in regards to SOPA; but it amazed me how that built into the unstopable juggernaught which shut the site down for a day. For a day, Wikipedia stopped being a resource of free online information, and transformed into a political lobby group. Sorry - that's just simply "truth" - and I'm pretty sure we can find WP:RS to WP:V that as well. Yet I admit - we were hardly alone in that one as many other sites offered their own protestations as well.
Getting back to O'Dwyer however - I'd ask Jimbo if he is contemplating bringing the weight of the Wikipedia website to bear in this matter. It's one thing for Jimbo to say as an individual that "X" is wrong, and "Y" is right; it's quite another to swing the "founder" hammer in those matters though. I've seen many posts, threads, and articles which profess that Jimbo has stated that Wikipedia is "your" site, "our" site, a collective rather than [his] individually run website. However, if every 3 or 6 months you (Jimbo) use your influence to make political statements, lobby for what is "right", then use Wikipedia as a platform for that - then we must forfeit all claims of NPOV, and you personally will likely face claims of the hypocritical nature. I am NOT making an accusation here in the least - simply offering one view to consider. And if you'd care to clarify your position as something seperate from Wikipedia as a whole, perhaps that would assuage some of the concerns as well. I have the utmost respect for you and what you (and the community) have accomplished with this project; but the "who" you are, Jimbo, is always going to be a very influential part of what is said. There are those who will follow you blindly. Equally, there are those who will oppose you, and just as blindly. Your words carry heavy weight sir. Just IMHO — Ched :  ?  00:10, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Concur emphatically with Ched, and in full.--Wehwalt (talk) 00:24, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Just a note, not commenting on most of the above post, but I don't think Jimbo was being "harsh" to Wehwalt, rather he was simply shooting down a proposition which he senses as false. Nothing wrong with that. -Stevertigo (t | c) 01:23, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

Is intentionally profiting off copyright infringement wrong?

You say "creators ought to be able to release their work under traditional copyright and have legal recourse against those who are illegally profiting from it". Okay, but that's pretty circular. If course it should be illegal to illegally do something.

More to the point, and without getting into the specific details of any particular incident, do you think it is wrong to profit by intentionally facilitating the copyright infringement of others? Note that I'm not talking about Google, or Tivo, or Betamax. I'm talking about knowingly, willfully, intentionally facilitating the copyright infringement of others. Incu Master (talk) 00:45, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

Where do you draw the line between facilitating infringement and not being able to tell which content is licensed or excepted under e.g. fair use law? (talk) 06:51, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Pretty much every TV show and modern film is copyright. So it ain't that hard to tell. Most of the big copyright holders like VIACOM also make proposals to these type of sites to bring them into line. Similar to how it is done on youtube where the ads from the copyright holder run along side the video. These link farms however want only to play there own ads. John lilburne (talk) 08:48, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
My question, to Mr. Wales, is about knowing, willful, intentional acts. I think he knows what those words mean. For those of you who don't you might want to start with the Wikipedia article mens rea. Also my question is about morality. If Mr. Wales wants to discuss legality we can get into that too, but first I'd like to try to establish a point of agreement - that intentionally helping people commit copyright infringement is wrong. This would build on the earlier point of agreement which Mr. Wales seems to have acknowledged - that copyright infringement is wrong and should be illegal. Incu Master (talk) 12:26, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Do you mean something like what Megaupload is accused of? - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 12:39, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I'm not trying to rationalize principles from specific cases. I'm trying to establish principles, so that they can be applied to individual cases. My question, to Mr. Wales, is whether it is wrong to profit by intentionally facilitating the copyright infringement of others. Incu Master (talk) 13:10, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I know, I'm just trying to get a handle on the type of behavior you're talking about so that I can offer my own opinion on it, even though Jimbo's is the one you're seeking. If I understand you correctly, the type of behavior you are seeking a moral opinion on is as follows:
  • Someone is infringing copyright.
  • Someone else is intentionally acting to facilitate that person in distributing their copyright-infringing material.
  • Is the behavior of person 2 morally wrong, regardless of legality or illegality?
Did I state the question accurately? - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 13:31, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
No, wait, hang on, it's specifically that Person 2 is profiting materially or financially from that behavior. With that clarification, did I state the question accurately? - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 13:33, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Personally I think the "profiting" part is pretty much irrelevant to the moral principle. I included it because Wales included it in the comment I was responding to. I think your description of a behavior which would fall under mine is correct, though not all-inclusive (it only touches upon "distributing"). Another description would be:
  • Someone (Alice) infringes copyright.
  • Someone else (Bob) helps them infringe copyright, knowing full well that they are helping someone (Alice) commit the acts which constitute copyright infringement (not necessarily knowing that the acts constitute copyright infringement).
  • That someone else (Bob) derives a financial benefit as a result of providing this assistance.
Again, personally I don't think the third criterion makes a difference to the moral principle. And I think the wrongness of Bob's action follows from the wrongness of Alice's action. Incu Master (talk) 13:50, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
  • If you use the right terminology, you'll find that what you're talking about has an encyclopaedia article: contributory copyright infringement, one of three theories of secondary liability in the U.S.. Also note that, as with fair use and fair dealing, copyright law is subtly different in the U.K., where the related concept is secondary infringement. We also have a whole article on Intellectual Reserve, Inc. v. Utah Lighthouse Ministries, Inc., 2:99-CV-808C (D.C. Utah 1999). , although we don't have one on, or indeed any mention of, Marobie-Fl., Inc. v. National Association of Fire Equipment Distributors, F. Supp. 1167, 1179 (N.D. Ill. 1997). . Uncle G (talk) 12:42, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
    • My question is about morality, not about UK or US or Swedish or any other law. My question, to Mr. Wales, is whether it is wrong to profit by intentionally facilitating the copyright infringement of others. I find the law, especially US law, incredibly interesting, but I'm not particularly interested in how Mr. Wales views the law. There are lawyers on each side of the issue who will make arguments about what the law says, and in what ways it is relevant to any particular case. Wales is making a moral argument in the quote above, in his Guardian article, and in his petition, and I am questioning him on his reasoning about it. Incu Master (talk) 13:12, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I think your question lacks nuance and it is not my style to give un-nuanced answers. It is like asking me if I think the color gray is more black or more white, if I have to choose just one. Well, some shades of gray are closer to black, and some shades of gray are closer to white. What degree of "intentionality"? What degree of "facilitation"? In terms of making a moral judgment about a specific person (or organization) in a specific case when the boundary lines are difficult to draw, I think it is extremely relevant to examine whether or not there was an effort to comply with the law.
Let me give some examples to make clear what I mean. If the New York Times says "If you want to see a lot of copyrighted content, you can download software called BitTorrent and search for websites that tell you about Torrent trackers" then it is arguable that they are profiting (through ads) by intentionally (they wrote it deliberately) facilitating (they tell you how to do it) copyright infringement. I don't think that's morally wrong.
Another way you might ask your question which would be easier to answer in a more absolute way: "Is it possible for someone to be doing something morally wrong in linking to websites where copyrighted material can be found?" My answer is: yes, it is entirely possible. To know for sure, I would need a lot more information, of the kinds outlined above.
My view is that morality depends on the full facts of reality, that principles are contextual, and that asking moral questions with a dropped context is not generally a productive way to gain understanding of someone's moral position.
One last thing that I should add, for the sake of clarity: there are many things that I personally think are immoral, but which I think both are legal and should be legal. So in terms of my advocacy in the Richard O'Dwyer case, I can say that I think one can either approve or disapprove morally of his actions, and still understand that extradition to a foreign country where none of the actions took place (neither Richard nor the servers were in the United States) is extremely problematic. If Richard were being prosecuted in his own country (the UK), then I would have a private view on how I think the case should be decided, and a private view on what I think the law should be, but I would not be launching a public campaign about it.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:41, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Starting with the last thing first. A number of the copyright owners are in the US then extrapolating from your argument: if someone was say posting naked images of a 14 yo American girl onto a server in Mongolia that was being accessed by people in China then the US could not request the extradition of the poster from say the UK? John lilburne (talk) 14:06, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I'm not sure they could. But that is a very different scenario. In the case of O'Dwyer, there are allegations of "cyberlockers" located in the US, being accessed by downloaders located in the US. The fact that O'Dwyer is alleged to have given his orders from the UK does not seem to be, in itself, decisive. Incu Master (talk) 14:45, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Richard did not operate 'cyberlockers' in the US or anywhere else. His site hosted links to other websites, such as Youtube.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:52, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I didn't say he operated the "cyberlockers". And the fact that he linked to Youtube is a nonsequitur. Incu Master (talk) 15:01, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
O'Dwyer had a FAQ on his site, which is still in the internet archives where he was posting links to the site either of his own volition or by user request that sort of puts a large onus on him to have known that the links were not to material that wasn't copyright. John lilburne (talk) 14:06, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Regarding the NYT hypothetical many would say that they would be morally wrong to do that (see section of GIZMODO). John lilburne (talk) 14:07, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for responding to my question. I don't think the New York Times example goes to intent. The question of intent is whether the sentence was written to help people commit copyright infringement, or to inform people that there is software which others are using to commit copyright infringement. The former would be immoral, if not illegal (probably is illegal but would be impossible to prove - unless you substitute New York Times with How To Commit Copyright Infringement Monthly). The latter is not immoral, and presumably not illegal either.
As for things which are immoral but should be legal, of course. But I think we've agreed that copyright infringement is not one of these things.
As for the extradition issue, I don't see how the location of Richard or the servers is relevant. If someone facilitates credit card fraud, using the credit card numbers of US citizens, helping US citizens commit fraud against other US citizens, and taking a cut of the "profits", while running a website served out of Sweden from his/her home in the UK, and gets extradited to the US, would you be writing a petition to stop the extradition? It seems you are saying there is something special about copyright law in this regard, and I don't understand it because you seem to agree that copyright infringement is, and should be, illegal. Incu Master (talk) 14:10, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
You are making up positions of your own dreams, and responding to them. None of this has any relevance to my position or anything that I have said.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:50, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
You suggested that because neither Richard nor the servers were located in the US, that the US didn't have jurisdiction over the issue. Incu Master (talk) 15:04, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
"I think it is extremely relevant to examine whether or not there was an effort to comply with the law." - Are you suggesting that ignorance of the law is an excuse? Incu Master (talk) 14:25, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I did not say or suggest that.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:50, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
What is the relevance of whether or not he made an effort to comply with the law, then? Are you saying he tried not to link to copyright violations, or are you saying that he made an effort to do so legally? Incu Master (talk) 15:04, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I am saying that he diligently tried to follow the law of the United Kingdom, but also that he responded to DMCA takedown requests, i.e. he tried to follow both US and UK law. I believe that he successfully obeyed the law, but you weren't asking about that, but rather about how we should morally judge someone in a case like this. I think it highly relevant from a moral perspective that he responded to takedown requests in the manner prescribed by law.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:07, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
He may have misunderstood the DMCA safe harbor provisions, and thought that they applied even in the case of "actual knowledge that the material or an activity using the material on the system or network is infringing" (or when "aware of facts or circumstances from which infringing activity is apparent", or in a case when you "receive a financial benefit directly attributable to the infringing activity, in a case in which the service provider has the right and ability to control such activity"). But ignorance of the law is no excuse. Incu Master (talk) 15:10, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I don't think he's ignorant of the law, but it sounds like you very likely are.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:14, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I have no reason to believe he's ignorant of the law either. The FBI allegedly shut down his domain name and he allegedly just started up with a new domain name. I think it's more likely he just thought the law didn't apply to him. I don't think he realized that he could get extradited for this sort of thing, and so far it appears that he was wrong about at least that part of the law. But more information about what he knew (and the law, itself) will come out during the trial, if there is one. Incu Master (talk) 15:17, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
You have no reason to believe he had scienter even if he was completely aware of the law. The question of whether behavior in support of archiving is exempt from restriction because of fair use would have to be resolved before an arrest warrant could issue in this case, and the Librarian of Congress has ruled on that matter. (talk) 17:05, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

Where does a crime take place?

Can a person commit a crime in a country without ever stepping foot inside that country? Incu Master (talk) 14:32, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

In some cases, yes. But claims that someone has done so should be subject to strong scrutiny.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:42, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
And I'm sure they will be. Incu Master (talk) 14:55, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Jimbo, you may be aware that you have now replied to this obviously banned user 5 times. There's probably a reason he's getting all this attention. Please explain it to me. Thanks. Hipocrite (talk) 15:02, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I like to be transparent and open in answering questions, but of course you have a valid point.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:05, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Please be transparent and open at User:Jimbo_Wales/Paid_Advocacy_FAQ, where you have been asked "Why should unpaid volunteers help deal with the flood of non-neutral, non-encyclopedic advocacy that advocates are being paid to overwhelm them with?" and "You once stated, "[P]eople who are acting as paid advocates do not make good editors. They insert puffery and spin. That's what they do because that it is what paid advocates do." Do you still feel as strongly?" Hipocrite (talk) 15:09, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I'm not sure what you are asking me for. I think that people who are acting as paid advocates do not make good editors. I still feel just as strongly as ever. I do not think unpaid volunteers should deal with the flood of advocacy - I think we should ban them. Is there something more specific I might say?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:13, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
If you think I am obviously banned you should start a complaint somewhere else. I'm not, and I would be willing to reveal my identity to Mr. Wales if he feels that is necessary and if he promises to keep the information confidential. Incu Master (talk) 15:08, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
It is not necessary, but it would be desirable.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:13, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

Oversea's report

The O'Dwyer case didn't catch my attention until my local (Hong Kong) free daily paper briefs some information of your opposition to the extradition with your portrait pictured. But really it only writes that you oppose it because the jail term that O'Dwyer might face in US is longer than in UK. I think the real problem is that many people are similar to Incu Master who judges legal case using moral stance. And this is quite exaggerated due to the multiple political scandals recently in my place. People who don't read the full story of O'Dwyer's extradition would have a negative view on you (that was my first impression just after reading that absurdly short report from the paper) because the case is quite complicated to many netizens' comprehension, compared to SOPA/PIPA. -- Sameboat - 同舟 (talk) 02:31, 27 June 2012 (UTC)

  • What does it mean to judge legal case using moral stance? Incu Master (talk) 03:48, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
    • You have stated that you think helping people to commit copyright infringement is morally wrong. Rather than believing copyright should exist as a stimulus for the creation of new works etc, rather you appear to think there is some moral issue here with infringing or helping to infringe the government granted monopoly rights of the copyright holders as set out by current copyright law? Essentially you appear to be bringing morals into the equation when they don't belong. IRWolfie- (talk) 10:10, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
      • There is nothing wrong with seeing protection of authors' rights to earn from their labor as a moral issue. But compiling a list of where stolen property is being stored is hardly helping the thieves. If the copyright holders were smart, they should have used O'Dwyer's effort to go after the infringers. He complied with the letter of both U.S. and U.K. law. The only people who believe he has not complied with the spirit of either have not thought the implications through. (talk) 18:17, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
    • I absolutely believe that there is a moral issue with infringing or helping to infringe copyright. I believe Mr. Wales agrees with me on this, at least with regard to the former, which is why I used that as a starting point. (Specifically, I am responding to his post in the Guardian [1], which seems to me to be Wales' attempt to distance himself from those for whom defense of O'Dwyer is simply an extension of their defense of copyright infringement. Expecially the first two paragraphs.)

      On the other hand, I don't think the notion that "copyright should exist as a stimulus for the creation of new works" is so far off either. Copyright, like all rights, is a principle which is derived from the fact that it is in our best interest to respect the rights of others. Incu Master (talk) 23:32, 27 June 2012 (UTC)

      • Totally incorrect, you have mixed two entirely different issues and trying to judge all of these using one single moral standard. A person may be morally wrong to commit a legal offense, but where should the person be judged, either in his locality or on foreign soil, the extradition treaty is entirely man-made law, no morality is applicable here, this is where Jimbo opposes. In a non-UK or non-US citizen's eye, the latter can hardly be defined as morally right or morally wrong. Having said that I understand that some US citizen does have the sentiment against O'Dwyer for infringing US's IP. I believe Jimbo wouldn't openly oppose the case if only the UK court find O'Dwyer guilty and put him in a UK jail. -- Sameboat - 同舟 (talk) 01:16, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
        • You've mixed up lex humana and lex posita there. Divine positive law most definitely does have a moral dimension, for the obvious reason. The encyclopaedia article that is actually titled man-made law (AfD discussion) explains the difference between positive law and man-made law — as does the article that you linked to behind that pipe, in fact. Uncle G (talk) 15:43, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
First of all, totally incorrect? What have I said above which is incorrect?
Secondly, Wales' campaign goes into much more than just the extradition treaty. Perhaps he wouldn't openly oppose the case if it weren't for the extradition, but he also likely wouldn't openly oppose the case if it were about credit card fraud as opposed to copyright infringement (though this itself is what I found curious, because he seems to agree - as opposed to most of the O'Dwyer defenders - that copyright infringement is a violation of rights).
On the whole, I think there's a good argument that the UK implementation of the extradition treaty is somewhat flawed. In particular, there seems to be no determination as to which jurisdiction is a better forum in which to hear the case. On the other hand, I don't see any mention of this flaw in Wales' petition [2]. The only real mention he makes to the extradition treaty is where he claims that "America is trying to prosecute a UK citizen for an alleged crime which took place on UK soil." He basis this, presumably, on the fact that O'Dwyer was living in the UK when the crimes are alleged to have taken place. But just because O'Dwyer was living in the UK when the crimes are alleged to have taken place, I don't think that automatically means that the UK is the proper forum for the trial. The very next sentence by Wales is "The internet as a whole must not tolerate censorship in response to mere allegations of copyright infringement." I'm not sure exactly what Wales means by that. When there is probable cause that someone has committed criminal copyright infringement, that person may be arrested. This isn't censorship, regardless of whether the arrest occurs across the street, across the country, or across the Atlantic. Incu Master (talk) 01:55, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Am I wrong about the credit card fraud thing? Would Wales and all the rest really be as up in arms over the extradition of a UK citizen living in the UK who ran a website that ran web ads on its lists of stolen US credit card numbers? Would that be decried by him as censorship and an encroachment of our civil liberties? Or is copyright infringement somehow just "not as bad" as credit card fraud? Incu Master (talk) 02:18, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I couldn't believe someone would ask the question when the one being questioned has already offered the explanation in the first sentence.
I might not be the right person to interpret the "against censorship" statement, my understanding is that copyright holders today (particularly those monopolies) have the habit to extend their rights to accuse potential offender and censor the content insatiably. The SOPA/PIPA is just the prelude.
No, I wouldn't assess the credit card fraud until someone were actually being tried and extradited. It has little to do with copyright infringement. -- Sameboat - 同舟 (talk) 02:36, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Your understanding regarding "insatiable copyright holders censoring content" is absolutely wrong. Google say that they do not comply with "inaccurate or unjustified copyright removal requests". However, they remove 97% of requests which implies that either they are lying, or that "unjustified copyright removal requests" are less that 3% of the total. That is hardly "insatiable censorship" is it. John lilburne (talk) 06:27, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
My opposition to the extradition is that I see no reason to extradite a person to a country where they did not commit a crime. I do not have a particularly high opinion of the US legal system or its treatment of foreigners and I see no reason a person should be sent there any more than to South Africa or Turkey or India or China or Brazil or any other country that might take it into their minds that one had broken their laws. If he committed any crime he did it in the UK and should be tried in the UK. Dmcq (talk) 23:32, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
Well, the request for extradition is based on the allegation that he did commit a crime in the US. One need not step foot in a country to commit a crime in that country. As for South Africa or Turkey or India or China or Brazil, well, different countries have different extradition treaties. You may not have a particularly high opinion of the US legal system, but the legislators of the United Kingdom apparently do (which is no surprise, as our legal system is based on theirs, and actually in my opinion is an improvement upon theirs). [Edit: Actually, looking at it appears that all of the countries you listed, with the obvious exception of China, are covered by the same extradition treaty.] Incu Master (talk) 23:36, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
You can only do something where you are, nowhere else. If somebody sticks stuff into Wikipedia for instance they do it from where they are. What you are defending is having someone in America being extradited to the UK for something they stuck into Wikipedia because Wikipedia is read in the UK and so UK laws apply. Do you really support that and if not why not? Dmcq (talk) 00:10, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I'm not sure what the facts of the situation are that you are talking about with regard to extradition to the UK. There definitely ought to be a nexus, but that nexus does not require that the person ever be physically present in the foreign state (I could bring up plenty of examples of crimes which took place in a foreign country even though that person never stepped foot in that foreign country, but I think you're smart enough to come up with them yourself). As for this particular case, the UK judge has ruled "There are said to be direct consequences of criminal activity by Richard O’Dwyer in the U.S.A. albeit by him never leaving the north of England." Incu Master (talk) 00:23, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Jimmy Wales' petition, already at nearly the target 100,000 signatures, is indeed worthy of support. When you or I or anyone puts content online, should we worry about one country's laws, or should we worry about a hundred countries' laws? Here in the U.S., should we care if a picture of a 23-year-old woman with small breasts is considered child porn in Australia, or pubic hair is considered obscene in Japan? Should we be prohibited from posting a raw dataset of 10,000 measurements because Britain says it is subject to database copyright, even though our own country doesn't care? Should our government be run like a bordello where prosecutors from around the world can saunter in and pick out citizens to have shipped off for their amusement? Then why should we expect Britain to run its government that way?! Americans can and have stood up for the rights even of an Ernst Zündel, and in fact neither the U.S. nor Canada ever agreed to extradite that man simply to be tried in Germany, but rather, both found unrelated legal reasons to deport him.
Jimbo is absolutely right here. You can talk about a hypothetical parallel with stolen credit card numbers - answer is, if the U.S. wants the U.K. to censor stolen credit card numbers, there's a way to do it, namely, to make a treaty with the U.K. requiring the U.K. authorities to criminalize and act against such lists. (Or, preferably, realize the quixotic nature of such an effort and devise secure methods of electronic commerce...) The right way for a government to accommodate foreign requests to infringe the freedom of speech of its citizens (if there were such a way) is to use its own courts to define the scope of these infringements. Wnt (talk) 04:04, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
As authorized by the court warrant for the domain seizure visitors to are redirected to "a banner that advises them that the domain name has been seized by Order of the Court, in connection with criminal copyright violations."[1]
No, I'm not sure he is. I don't think much of the US-UK extradition treaty because of US making so much conduct by people who have not physically visited the US criminal. However, I did read the extradition decision, and if the allegations made by the US are true, then O'Dwyer was considerably more active in expediting piracy than merely linking to YouTube. And there is the question of his, allegedly, starting with a new domain hosted outside the US after the US-hosted one was confiscated by federal authorities, and a rather strong statement of defiance against US authorities, which seems to raise questions about the geeky-kid-trying-to-comply-with-US-and-UK-law bit. Still, those are only allegations. I will say that the screenshot we have in the O'Dwyer article of what the government posted on tvshack after the seizure, is troubling, when, the defense of O'Dwyer seems to be good faith efforts to comply. Surely a geeky kid, seeing that on his screen, and endeavoring to act in good faith, would not have immediately rebuilt on a non-US website? I will admit to concerns as to what people will think, down the line, and especially if there's a trial, of Wikipedia's indirect association with O'Dwyer.--Wehwalt (talk) 05:51, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Wikipedia itself has been censored in several nations, including the UK. Our response has generally been defiant, even to the point of specifically exempting Chinese users from a ban on editing from open proxies. We expect to be able to do this; we find it normal, because it is a long-standing American tradition for people to ignore laws of other countries when we decide what to say or write. That is the behavior that should be a precedent for other nations. Wnt (talk) 12:04, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Even if the allegations are all true and serious, the extradition is still questionable. That reminds me some army force rampaged another country to kill someone then threw his body into the sea secretly. -- Sameboat - 同舟 (talk) 06:36, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Yes, I am no fan of US foreign policy, and that gets tied up in this. I don't like that a higher standard must be met for a US to UK transfer than the other way around. However, there are facially neutral reasons for that, that the UK extends that to countries with advanced legal systems, and the US cannot due to the Constitution which requires probable cause for all outbound US extraditions. I also disapprove of the tendency to ratchet up penalties to show that a legislator is "tough on crime". However, on the other side, O'Dwyer allegedly contracted with US firms regarding advertising on his site, so that when Americans viewed and used his site, they would see ads, he accepted money in return, and used a US registration until confiscated. That's a bit beyond just sitting at home in Milton Keynes and worrying about complying with the laws of 200 nations. He availed himself of the US economy, contracting with US parties to advance what he was doing. My sense of justice is less outraged by those facts than it might have been, otherwise.--Wehwalt (talk) 07:15, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I believe if a person fires a gun an kills someone the crime is committed in pulling the trigger and not in the dying of the person. A person dying from being hit by a bullet is not a crime. Dmcq (talk) 11:16, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Dmcq, you might want to rephrase that... meanwhile, to digress a bit on my own, doesn't anyone find it creepy that this very lucrative ICANN monopoly on domain names even exists, let alone that governments could "seize" a directory listing? I mean, I think someone could - and should - make a Netscape plug-in to "Look Up A Company", and you could type in "google" or "wikipedia" or whatever and get sent to the right IP address, selected from a list in a text file on your hard drive. (They're big enough now to hold all the important listings) Would you find it just a little out of place if somebody from the government comes to you, says you have to delete items out of your textfile, because you're not supposed to know where those companies are anymore? (Especially when they still exist and people in the Free World, wherever it is, are still accessing them, or else the government wouldn't have to tell you any such thing in the first place) Wnt (talk) 16:05, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I wrote what I meant like I always do. I see no reason to rephrase it. Dmcq (talk) 17:32, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Well, I'm not sure what the metaphor is about, but usually if someone ends up getting killed unnaturally there is a crime involved. I mean, someone could be juggling pistols in the courtyard at the local shopping mall and one falls on the ground and turns out to be loaded and goes off from the shock and kills a kid in the crowd it's still some kind of negligent homicide, at least. Wnt (talk) 19:57, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

I think one question that has been raised repeatedly in this thread is one that makes no sense. No, I would not launch a petition to save someone from extradition for credit card fraud. But you can't conclude from that anything about my position on credit card fraud or how bad it is relative to copyright infringement nor how I privately think credit card fraud should be dealt with legally, etc. For a variety of reasons, demands on my time among them, I don't take a personal interest in every issue on earth. I am not particularly knowledgeable about the laws surrounding credit card fraud, nor do I have any particular reason to become interested. I am not interested enough in the issue to get involved at all. Nor would the general public be particularly interested in my views on the matter, as I am not known in that field.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 12:18, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

you are not known in the field of copyright infringement either — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:03, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
@Jimmy - the argument above was actually this: "If someone facilitates credit card fraud, using the credit card numbers of US citizens, helping US citizens commit fraud against other US citizens, and taking a cut of the "profits", while running a website served out of Sweden from his/her home in the UK, and gets extradited to the US, would you be writing a petition to stop the extradition?" He was not trying to infer anything about your position. He was asking 'would you support such a petition'. Your answer seems to be that you would not support it because you don't have the time or knowledge, rather than not supporting it because it was wrong. As to not having the knowledge - you are saying you don't know whether using the credit card numbers of US citizens, helping US citizens commit fraud against other US citizens, and taking a cut of the "profits" is wrong? That seems like a kind of ethical blindness to me. I don't know much about credit cards. Probably less than you. But I jolly well know that a fraud of that kind is wrong. And you say you don't know? Really? I thought you claimed once that you hated ethical blindness? Quisquiliae (talk) 19:25, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Credit card information would violate personal privacy. Both U.S. and U.K. copyright authorities have listed several exemptions to copyright law for archiving and there are separate safe harbor provisions protecting those who, while they may facilitiate piracy and profit from doing so, are not liable in equity or law. Financial fraud has an entirely different set of case law internationally. Doing the same thing with credit card information would be profoundly criminal and very extraditable. (talk) 19:49, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
It's up to Sweden to decide whether to prohibit their citizens from doing this (and indeed some treaty might require it). The U.S. has a recourse if it thinks it's being slighted - it can declare war on Sweden. Truly, demanding individual Swedish citizens be given over for trial no matter what the local laws are would be just a limited form of war (and offering them, just a limited form of surrender). But a country which counts among its rights the prohibition of free communication between citizens of other countries in their own cities, indeed even within their own homes, is not fighting a just or defensive war. Wnt (talk) 19:51, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Right, so giving out credit card information so people can steal from you is not wrong for the stealing, but for the privacy aspect. Enabling people to steal work I have copyrighted is OK because it's merely enabling stealing. OK, I see. Quisquiliae (talk) 20:17, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I think you've missed what I wrote about a different set of case law (and older treaties) for direct financial fraud. Copyright violation is traditionally a civil tort. (talk) 21:25, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
@Wnt - I wasn't asking Jimmy whether Sweden should prohibit it, I was asking whether he knew it was wrong. Now let Jimmy answer. Does he know whether enabling theft is wrong? Quisquiliae (talk) 20:19, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Is there a law in the US about restricting information like that? I thought it had free speech whatever the effect on someone and databases were not protected in law? Dmcq (talk) 21:55, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
You'd think that the the FBI amongst others would know about that. John lilburne (talk) 22:40, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I'm not quickly finding the details on this Ugnazi prosecution; clearly some sort of cooperation between international law enforcement agencies is involved. There is apparently a range of opinion over whether existing international agreements such as the Organized Crime Convention cover credit card effectively or not, when properly used. [3] Keep in mind that there is a huge distinction between extraditing someone when country A and country B agree that an activity is criminal and pernicious and want to work together to stamp it out, versus when country A calls it a crime and country B does not. There is also a very significant difference between the political advisability of making laws to allow cooperation when these laws are narrowly targeted to prevent actual financial fraud, versus when they are drafted in such a way as to impede journalists and the occasional odd Wikipedian. But a country must actually defend its sovereignty, take the time to make and evaluate its own laws, and use its own courts to decide whether probable cause to extradite exists under its own laws, if it is to have any say at all in whether the law it is enforcing is narrow or broad. Wnt (talk) 00:25, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

Lack of motivation

Why is there such a lack of motivation here at Wikipedia, especially by established editors? As a content-creator, I have lately been feeling that editing here is just a waste of time. What cure is there for this ennui? I have made over 80,000 edits in the four years since I became a Wikipedian and now cannot motivate myself to even expand or correct pages. I have noticed the dearth of veteran editors making recent contributions.--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 08:44, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

Many get tired of having to argue nonstop about the ever changing guidelines and other rules, plus arguing with people who keep trying to delete everything they don't like. Do you find yourself exposed to this unpleasant conflicts a lot? Have you found something more interesting in your life to do instead? Dream Focus 14:22, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
  • Enthusiasm versus dread: I'll leave space for Jimbo to answer, above, but you know I see as much enthusiasm as dread. To dwell on the dread, the editing has been tiresome to remove "vast" amounts of erratic formatting, grammar errors, and wp:Grandstanding text added into the lede of articles, with "too many" vanity pages causing editors to wonder if they are spending time polishing someone else's advert. Of course, there is notability for the 11 Sikh Gurus, but all the followers seems a bit much. The widespread popularization of Wikipedia has attracted numerous, sloppy editors, but also many careful editors who update thousands of pages, and quickly debate to remove vanity pages. Hence, we formerly had many thousands of totally dreadful articles, but now look at "gurdwara" (Sikh worship center) and compare to years ago. I think Jimbo, over the past 11-12 years has noted many editors come and go, with a typical "burnout" period, and so many acquainted editors will see old friends leaving around the same time. Jimbo has noted something similar to a hobby that runs its course, and then a new hobby is found. Yet, consider the advice given to long-term survivors: make friends with younger people (because the older ones are more likely to be leaving sooner). To dwell on the enthusiasm, align with editors who cannot wait to write 300 articles about the 2012 Summer Olympics, the 600 most notable films this year (many in 3D), the best-selling books, or explain what really happened with the Mayan end of the world (on 21 December 2012), etc. Perhaps join into more wp:WikiProjects, to join wider circles of friends and their interests. For people thinking "burnout" then suggest more wikibreaks this year, perhaps make an effort of talking to "10 strangers" each month about have they heard of Wikipedia. -Wikid77 (talk) 14:46, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I do occasionally feel like I'm waging a one-man war to try keeping a lid on the fighting in controversial articles, especially at AE; for all the complaints that admins are power-hungry, almost none go to AE, which is where we have more power than anywhere. Most often, it's myself, EdJohnston, Timotheus Canens, and when he's around WGFinley, and occasionally Calil and Seraphimblade come by. I wouldn't expound upon this were it not for the many complaints that editing in such areas burns people out; if more people would deal with that (and the many channels of DR as well), I think it'd help. As for me, if I need motivation I can take solace in my more arcane interests. I've felt reinvigorated after uploading a bunch of images of Yukie Chiri and Imekanu (still trying to get a date on one more photo of Imekanu, hopefully I'll be able to upload that to Commons too); past articles have included Zoya Phan and Inau. Nice and quiet, and I can work however much I want. Helps that I care a lot about the subjects too. Oh, and if anyone feels any sudden motivation here, please have a look at WP:BLPN#User talk:Ghazal Omid; for all the bluster about BLP, when I go to BLPN with an issue more complicated than a category or sexual orientation and with a subject who's actually acting like a rational person I get almost nothing. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 00:27, 29 June 2012 (UTC)
  • Follow interesting photos to write text:
    This photo made me curious to update volcano article "Incahuasi".
    The numerous photos in Wikimedia Commons are another source of motivation. In fact, for thousands of articles, the related Commons photos (not yet displayed in many articles) could double the reader's perspective on a subject, such as realizing a volcanic mountain in Argentina and Chile can have a lake on top, with multiple stratovolcano peaks rising still further, higher than Kilimanjaro. I was surprised to learn that not just the remote places, but also many popular cities do not show various photos which could provide a wider, NPOV view of the areas of a city. Displaying photos is not just needed for rarely read pages; instead thousands of popular articles need the photos linked from Commons. The photos have been sitting there for years, and just not used yet. One experiment I tried was to go to Wikimedia Commons, hit "Random" 30x times, and see which astounding images were not used in any articles yet. -Wikid77 (talk) 05:39, 29 June 2012 (UTC)


So...apparently you are, like, the god of Wikipedia or something. Just...sayin hi. hi :) -- (talk) 00:43, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

Jimbo Wales, you are quoted out of context in an AFD.

[4] Since you were mentioned and quoted there, by someone trying to convince people to deleted an article, I thought you might like to know. Seems to be a topic that offends some people, who let emotions get in the way of seeing that it adequately covered in the news media. Dream Focus 14:20, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

Hmm, yeah. I'd be fine with someone quoting me on some principle if I've expressed it well and people find it persuasive, but it seems a bit odd to quote me saying "I would vote to delete" when i was talking about something else entirely!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:33, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I wasn't saying you would vote delete. I was saying it's a valid argument to make in an AfD [5]. was stating that grouping a disparate collection of topics into a single article when not covered by reliable sources as a collection is a reason for deletion. The comment before stated that it was not a valid argument [6]. I was not saying that you had any opinion on this AfD. IRWolfie- (talk) 14:36, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
Yes, I understand. Might have been better to cut out the parts where I was talking about a specific other article and just quote me on the principles?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:42, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
[7] I'm thinking to quote you at all would be to try to sway people one way or the other in the debate. There is surely a guideline page to link to instead. Dream Focus 14:46, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I think it's perfectly fine to quote other people to try to sway people one way or the other in debates.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:17, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
It's not covered in guidelines but WP:IAR applies. It's also obvious that we don't want articles that are novel combinations of topics to make a new topic not covered in reliable sources (WP:COMMONSENSE). IRWolfie- (talk) 14:54, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I've removed the part about strong delete and added a disclaimer that it's not about the current article in question. IRWolfie- (talk) 14:56, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
In point of reference, the Jimbo quote dealt with the ethereal being article, now deleted, and it can be read in talk:Jimbo archive 108. The delete voters made a strong case that the article was in fact too SYNTHetic to stand, that "ethereal being" though possibly a valid topic for an article, became an unnecessary catch-all for various types of immaterial being concepts, without sourcing which would actually tie them all together. In a certain way they were right, that we need sources to deal with the subject itself objectively and not create catch-all articles. In another way though, the delete voters seemed to overstate their point to invalidate the very concept of having such an article about such a subject, unless it was constrained to using just sources which explicitly used the term "ethereal being." But they left open the possibility of re-creating the article provided it remained constrained.
What I want to point out here though is that Wikipedia historically has not been known as a traditional encyclopedia, and thus we can create list articles for example, or articles on topics which no traditional encyclopedia would touch, like topics in perverse sexual acts for example. Hence we do and have created articles on topics which deal with concepts - they are started with some idea which editors deemed valid and encyclopedic, and then cobbled together in some educational or otherwise interesting way to explain the subject, or simply list the things which qualify. I made the point at the above mentioned discussion that we might create an article about something encyclopedically silly like Stan Lee film cameos, and list the various cameos he's been in, and explain a little detail about them. Would we need a source which discussed the concept of Stan Lee's film cameos as a whole, or could we base the article on various news sources? I think the answer comes down to specific cases, and depends on the quality of the topic, the writing, and the sources. In any case I think its clear that the argument one editor made in the context of the ethereal being debate, that we would need some other encyclopedia to first write an article on the same concept, is not accurate. We indeed have a great many articles which other encyclopedias do not have, or would even touch, and that's not entirely a bad thing, although I think that articles like cum shot need to go. The point is that its possible to be too prejudicial in the negative about these types of articles. -Stevertigo (t | c) 22:39, 28 June 2012 (UTC)
I agree that articles of the nature "NOTCENSORED so I can write any silly nonsense" should be deleted, but "cum shot" is a real-life phenomenon and it's conceivable that an article could be written on that topic (I haven't looked at that one, but I suspect "delete" would be my recommendation). However, opening the floodgates to made-up topics would be most undesirable—Wikipedia only works because there is, at least in principle, some objective method to determine whether a topic is notable, and whether text is verifiable and suitable. If editors were welcome to create topics like "Stan Lee film cameos" (assuming no solid secondary sources), we would be flooded with OR warriors who would love to blog here on their favorite topic and soak up Wikipedia's reputation and search rankings. That would be bad enough, but dealing with them would distract a lot of time and energy from the encyclopedia, and if such made-up topics became entrenched, their authors would start working their opinions into mainstream articles. Johnuniq (talk) 00:52, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
I think we should be fully open to such "made up topics", when done as a rational means of organization. For example, if you have a huge article Stan Lee and you're looking for things to split out of it to reduce the size. Sometimes also a wide variety of related notable topics can be combined under a more general topic where it is convenient, though this is perhaps more problematic. As for cumshot, the article certainly should stand, and really, needs to be expanded - it doesn't address the central question of why there is a market for purely genital pornography. Do some people really find this prettier/sexier than whole body pornography? Wnt (talk) 02:38, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

Revised stats confirm high-edit editors stronger

As noted earlier, the revised statistics for May 2012 have confirmed that the highly active editors have been working at even higher levels (for 3 months), despite the pessimist perception that "most" formerly busy editors have dropped to low activity (just not true). See editor counts for 25+, 100+, 250+ edits per month:

The adjusted editor-count data simply refutes any concept that "most people" have slowed to a mere token effort, and instead, another 56 busy editors have moved to editing even more articles each day (>250 article edits per month). That is probably a key reason why hitting "Special:Random article" typically displays a high-quality page. Thousands of editors are still continually improving articles. For daily editing (25+ edits per month), the data table shows "9723" editors (~10,000 editors) update Wikipedia articles 25 or more times per month (more than 6 times per week, excluding 1 day of rest). There is no "mass exodus" of busy editors, nor are they "sitting idle" in frustration. The data shows that Wikipedia has more than 10,000 daily editors, active each month. One of the reasons that some people believe editors are slowing, or idle, is because many (most?) editors do not discuss plans in "Talk:" and instead just edit hundreds of articles with no discussions. More about this later: I think most registered editors rarely edit talk-pages. -Wikid77 (talk) 07:22, 29 June, revised 13:14, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

Article-edit counts make long-term editors seem less active

Related thread: Revised stats confirm high-edit editors stronger

As I had suspected, the focus on "highly active editors" (as editing 100+ articles edits per month) has made the long-term editors seem less active in the monthly statistics, as dropping from the core 3,500 busy editors. Without naming any particular users, the pattern can be seen where people still edit several pages per day, perhaps 140 edits per month, but 30 of those edits will be "Talk:" pages, another 6 edits will be "Template:", plus 4 edits to "Wikipedia:" guidelines, and another 3 edits to "File:" image descriptions. The adjusted total edits becomes: 140-30-6-4-3 = 97 edits to article pages, when making 140 edits per month. So, since 97 is less than 100, then that editor is counted in the group of 5 edits per month (or 25+ edits in the full tables), not among the core 3,500 highly active.

I have seen many examples where a person makes daily edits totalling only "73" (or such) edits per month, but that counts in the 5-per-month group. Those people with 73 edits are there to revert vandalism, or correct mistakes every day, but they do not count among the 3,500 editors with 100+ edits. The more experienced the editors become, then the more likely they will edit a wider variety of namespaces, and split monthly edits into 30 to edit "Talk:" pages, or 14 edits to WP:Village_pump, noticeboards or guidelines (etc.), leaving fewer than 100 edits to articles. Similarly, editors who learn that edit-conflict almost never occurs for rare articles will likely make fewer, but longer, edits, where formerly they made 100+ smaller edits to update articles before they learned which articles can be updated with 1-edit fixes.

The more experienced editors will accomplish more each day with fewer edits, while also talking with more users, but will then have fewer monthly article edits, as below 100. While many occasional users will drop away completely, below 5 edits, other busy editors will combine or split 100+ edits to have only "73" article edits per month, and give the impression that a core of 3,500 editors (@100+) has fallen from 3,800 several months earlier. Meanwhile, the broader reality is that expert editors have learned to accomplish more, every day, with fewer article edits per month. One editor had 346 edits for June 2012, but many in other namespaces (talk: 125, Template: 53, WP: 40, User: 32, Help: 13, File: 4), so 346-125-53-40-32-13-4 = 79 article edits. That counts among 5-edits-per-month, but not in the 3,500 core with 100+ edits. I am not hunting to find these examples, they are common. Instead, we need to count edits to all namespaces combined, and then consider levels such as 30+ or 60+ edits per month, as showing high amounts of activity, even if a person logs 50 edits per month at Village-pump questions. Those are still very-active editors for a core of "10,000" daily editors. -Wikid77 (talk) 07:22, 29 June, revised 30 June, 05:14, 1 July 2012 (UTC)


In a random email conversation about politics, someone pointed me to Incarceration in the United States from which I also found the similar article United States incarceration rate. I believe that both these articles are plagued by a very serious editorial deficiency and I hope by posting here I will call the problem to the attention of some good editors.

My dictionary (Oxford American) defines "Incarceration" as "the state of being confined in prison". Our article Incarceration defines it as "the detention of a person in prison". As such, there seems to be quite universal agreement that we should contrast as being different things "incarceration" versus "probation" or "parole".

But the two articles conflate these two quite carelessly. We talk actually of "incarceration rates" when the numbers cited are for people who are in prison PLUS those on probation or parole.

Speaking as a reader rather than editor, I'm quite alarmed by the rapid increase in the incarceration rates in the United States, but when I went to learn more, Wikipedia seems to have failed me. We need to break out the numbers so that the reader can understand whether all these people are actually in prison, i.e. is there a genuine explosion in prison population? Or is there (an also disturbing, but different) explosion of people on probation or parole?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:07, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

I used the latest DoJ report I found - the incarceration rate is way lower than the earlier figures, and the Federal incarceration rate is very low (about 200K prisoners out of the total US population) - even compared to other countries, which do not necessarily include some of the categories the US figures do include. Collect (talk) 11:15, 29 June 2012 (UTC) Now someone needs to fix the other articles (I only did Incarceration). Collect (talk) 11:17, 29 June 2012 (UTC)
2010 figures (2 less) EDIT: interestingly, in that report, it notes that incaceration rates fell again, but that 2010 was the first year that the total # of prisoners fell since 1972. --Errant (chat!) 11:44, 29 June 2012 (UTC)
The issue appears to be that in recent years States are less inclined to re-jail parole violators. Probably a cost cutting budgetary thing. John lilburne (talk) 12:11, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

A small note regarding the usage of the word "rate": The rates discussed in United States incarceration rate and other "incarceration rate" articles actually refer to prevalence/proportions rather than true (incidence) rates. In other words the total number of people 'incarcerated' at a particular time divided by the total population at the time (n/N), rather than, say, the number of new cases of incarceration per the total population during one given year (though a true incidence rate would actually be measured in person-years). I wouldn't want to argue that this common usage of "incarceration rate" isn't justly sanctioned by WP:COMMONNAME, but I feel the articles themselves should make it immediately clear what they're talking about, rather than merely wikilinking to a list, as in the lede of the US article. —MistyMorn (talk) 14:54, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

  • Trend was 90% perhaps 60% on probation will go to jail: The effect of combining actual inmate counts with people on probation is probably fairly accurate because the rate of probation violation has been very high in the U.S., and almost all (over 90%) will fail the terms of probation and go to jail, often with the conviction for something they did not do, which was the alleged crime covered by the probation, but never decided on actual evidence with "due process". The situation with Lindsey Lohan was very rare: to complete almost all of 4 years probation, and then go to jail anyway; however, she was given multiple 2nd, 3rd, 8th chances whereas most people would fail probation sooner, and not get reinstated on probation so many times. I have lived in many cities across the U.S. and the "local jail" has the same problems of overcrowding and worries about if a fire/hurricane would be fatal to so many confined people, or when gang rivalry arises, how to protect the majority of inmates from "collateral damage" when shanks start flying. I would like to think that the probation-violation rate is now below 90% but I doubt it. There is also talk, in multiple cities, that the drug-war culture is a racket to pay lawyers ($5,000?) to put people on probation, then the system collects their fee money for months/years, only to later jail them and give them non-due-process convictions (which only makes them angrier), perhaps leading to more legal work and convictions in the future. It seems to be a revolving door of police busy-work arrests and legal fees to defend charges of petty "victimless crimes". -Wikid77 (talk) 14:56, 29 June 2012 (UTC)
    Your numbers are way off the mark. The county in Texas with the highest rate of probation revocation revokes about 15% (source),as of 2005. I haven't looked up numbers for other states, but one can generally count on Texas to be among the toughest for things like this. Looie496 (talk) 16:04, 29 June 2012 (UTC)
Contrast per-year versus per-person: Thanks for noting that group, but I am thinking the "15%" is "per-year", so after 4 years it adds to 60% (4x15%). The figures show ~160,000 people on probation in Texas each year, for 10 years, where nearly "22,000" are revoked and sent to jail/prison each year. It is like a bucket that leaks 15% per hour, where after 5 hours, 75% (5x15%) of the water would be gone (revoked), but a hose keeps adding more water (people) into the bucket, so the effect is "only 15%" leaks out per hour (only 15% of probationers get revoked each year, but it totals higher over 5 years). The concept is like trying to hit a "moving target" so that the original target population is hidden by the new people on probation each year, where the target has moved behind others and is obscured. Among juveniles, 66% of those on probation got rearrested within 3 years (see report for whole State of Texas: TX-Recidivism-Report-2011, pages 10/53). However, I added "perhaps 60%" to my note title above, in case 90% is too high now. -Wikid77 (talk) 11:23, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
  • I've given the article one run through the grinder, but it'll need a few more passes. It would also help for some people to scout out new sources - there are too few sources being used over and over in this version for me to feel fully confident in it. Wnt (talk) 14:57, 29 June 2012 (UTC)
Thank you for your work! The intro of Race in the United States criminal justice system has a problem, too, confusing cause and effect in ethnic subpopulations. It and its talk page will probably help with the incarceration rate articles. (talk) 22:31, 29 June 2012 (UTC)
Indeed! But Race and crime in the United States suggests possible causal explanations in terms of dumbing down, sexing up, or whatever.... Ugh! —MistyMorn (talk) 23:35, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

There is now an RfC on the Incarceration in the United States page - though one person has opined that is "almost exclusively" about incarceration, and the rest is in the general context of "correctional population." Cheers. Collect (talk) 11:33, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

  • Also need to describe trends and restrictions over the years: We have the data from 1980, 1990, 2000, 2007-2010 to note the higher U.S. incarceration rates for multiple recent years, and I think that should be noted, as a long-term trend, and mentioned in the lede of the article(s). Also, many readers would not know that probation has strong restrictions, such as limited travel, impromptu visits from probation officers, and no alcohol (no wine/beer ever for 4-5 years), which many people would consider "imprisonment". Likewise, the restrictions for parole could be summarized, to note the contrast against freedoms of the general public, for the readers to consider the differences. -Wikid77 (talk) 19:35, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia in news again for porn. Shouldn't libraries and schools have a censor?

store in karachi


Hello, Jimbo Wales. Please check your email; you've got mail!
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Please check it soon :) Diego Grez (talk) 14:05, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Is there a bias against calling people who were born Jewish as such?

Dear sir-

I am curious if there is a reason that many of those that are born as Jews are not mentioned as such regardless of current religious affiliation or lack thereof? Teller is an examples. Regardless of being an athiest or any other belief in a different religion, being a Jew is not about religious affiliation and can not be given up, much as one can not change whether one is African-American, Hispanic, Chinese, or Arab. Would someone who is Korean by birth and adopted in America not have anything mentioned on their Wikipedia biography regarding their Korean birth? If so then I understand, if not then there is a bias against Jews. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:49, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Wiki does not attempt to define Who is a Jew? The general practice on these issues is to reflect how sources describe the individual in the article. Ankh.Morpork 22:05, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
being a Jew is not about religious affiliation and can not be given up Would you like to explain that, because usually we find that the label being a Jew is often applied based on religious criteria. The last discussion I saw on the BLP/N was from a journalist that objected to being labelled as Jewish on WP. John lilburne (talk) 22:51, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Many discussions at WP:BLP/N have resulted in a general feeling that labelling people where they do not self-identify with the label is not good. Collect (talk) 22:16, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Although I have never seen a serious comprehensive study, anecdotally it does seem that we are more likely on average to identify Jewish roots than other roots. I'm not particularly happy about it, but I note that it is likely both anti-Jewish and pro-Jewish editors who tend to do this. Anti-semites love to catalog every Jew in power to further their conspiratorial fantasies. Pro-semites are often justifiably proud of Jewish accomplishments in science, business, the arts, etc. and like to mention the Jewish roots in biographies. There are several complicating factors as well, not least of which that being Jewish is or can be both a religious affiliation and a cultural/ethnic heritage.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 05:48, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you!

Vitruvian Barnstar Hires.png The Technical Barnstar
Thanks you, Jimmy. Wikipedia is a great site! Paulolimac (talk) 16:33, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Improving the useability of wikipedia:Graphics

Some thoughts are needed here.♦ Dr. Blofeld 12:44, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

  • Perhaps need essay WP:Gourmet for customization: In any vast society, there will be an exclusive group of enthusiasts, so I think we should prepare an essay, WP:Gourmet, to cater to groups of people who really enjoy Wikipedia and would be willing to select special, customized settings, depending on exotic preferences. Already, someone noted how to change the wikilink colors:
Perhaps some people might want wikilinks to appear "green" to indicate new growth in knowledge or such. I have advocated for editors to create more barcharts to show data in upright histogram-like format (hence, we have Help:Barchart). Readers should not be driven into thinking that all articles are "extruded" from a text machine which forces data into sets of cookie cutters, even though that is somewhat the case. I think Dr. Blofeld has noted a great idea, and we just need more documentation to cater to the exclusive views of such users. Excellent. -Wikid77 (talk) 13:02, 30 June 2012 (UTC)
I know there are quite a few people are very sensitive to fonts and styling and find any misuse very unpleasant indeed. It isn't something that bothers me at all but I try to cater for it when I'm doing things. A special help so people can adjust things like colours weights and fonts probably is a good idea, there have been quite a few complaints even about the use of serifs in maths though that is fairly standard, but it may be possible to provide a non-serif version in future for such people or for the moment they could have the body text in serif font, perhaps they just might not worry over the difference between Computer Modern and Times New Roman. Dmcq (talk) 09:38, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
Beware the restrictions of WP:ACCESS are another kink which limits the standard styles for displaying pages. In particular, the prohibition against semicolon headers ("; header") seems just too extreme, and many editors still use semicolon headers to avoid "===header===" being shown in the Table of Contents. Meanwhile, avoiding similar red/green contrast markers seems an easy issue for color blindness. Also, many images need the "alt=" text for a basic description of the image. However, there are several other issues to consider, and perhaps we can find better alternatives. -Wikid77 02:46, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Côte d'Ivoire v. Ivory Coast

Hi Jimbo, there's yet another request to move Côte d'Ivoire to Ivory Coast going on. I'm surprised no one seems to have asked for your opinion on this. It's a perennial issue, and one in which both sides are able to point to several policies supporting their position. I know you don't rule by fiat or anything, but I suspect your weighing in could go a long way toward settling the issue, at least somewhat. If your position differs from mine, I'd be inclined to back off, and others probably feel the same. I hope you'll consider sharing your opinion with the community. Best, BDD (talk) 00:01, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

From that discussion: "As for the Google insights numbers, they have relevance to WP:COMMONNAME which is dictated by "its prevalence in reliable English-language sources". Obviously random people who entered text into a search engine box aren't reliable".
I think this is one of the instances where the insistence on reliable sources is killing us. Why in the world do we want to use a name from "reliable sources" in preference to what people actually use?
It's like how notability is limited to appearance in reliable sources. I see no reason why we should have to have reliable sources for something to be notable--we are not using the sources for information about the subject that might be true or false and therefore for which reliability is relevant, we just are using the sources to know that the subject is mentioned a lot.
(The naive reply would be "if we don't have reliable sources we have nothing to use to write an article anyway", but if that reasoning was true, then large parts of the policy wouldn't make any sense. For instance, we shouldn't have topics that are presumed to meet the standards without needing a source, since it would not be possible to write an article about such topics.) Ken Arromdee (talk) 16:26, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

A twist on paid editing

There has been discussion of late regarding "paid editing" on Wikipedia. I would be interested to know if WMF would use its legal resources to ensure that hours spent volunteering would be recognized as tax deductible. That would help the lot of us to recuperate some of what we give already. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 21:24, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

From the United States Internal Revenue Service:
"you cannot deduct the value of your services given to a qualified organization"
"You cannot deduct the value of your time or services"
Hope that answers your question. In short, No. -- Avanu (talk) 21:27, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
It does answer the question. It doesn't make me immediately glad, and lord knows it doesn't surprise me. I thank you, nevertheless. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 21:35, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
Very sad, could've saved me a lot of money. Ryan Vesey Review me! 21:37, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
It looks like this discussion is finished and yes, it's a shame that volunteers can't deduct somehow the value of their time. The one thing I'd like to add is my usual encouragement to distinguish between "paid editing" (which can often be perfectly valid and uncontroversial) and "paid advocacy" (which is very problematic for all the obvious reasons).--Jimbo Wales (talk) 05:54, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
That is a prudent distinction and I agree. In keeping with that thought, I think you would agree that even a volunteer advocate is generally problematic. So indeed it is the biased nature of advocacy that deserves our scorn. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 07:01, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I would caution against a US-centric approach. The wiki may well be located in Florida (or wherever) as far as most laws are concerned, but individual editors are all around the world and subject to different tax regimes. However, there will be few places where editors could realistically treat their work as "deductible" because there's no actual pricetag on it. You're donating hours, not $, and there's no hard evidence (hard enough for a MinFin) as to how many hours you gave. As soon as it were possible to gain some advantage from telling your tax authority that you did charitable work on the internet, everybody would be claiming to do 60 hours a week - in addition to their day jobs. Many MinFins provide a helping hand to charities by allowing some contributions by other people and organisations to be considered "deductible", but it's not a free ride. bobrayner (talk) 07:18, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
That would be a racket, pay zero tax at work because you spent all your time on Wikipedia. Somebody should bribe an IRS agent. Ryan Vesey Review me! 21:47, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
Jimbo, I'm just curious as to where you draw the distinction between paid editing and paid advocacy. I assume the distinction is in the quality of the work, not the actions causing the work, correct? If an editor is paid to create an article for a company, but does it in a neutral manner, would you call it paid editing? Sorry if you've labeled this a million times before. Ryan Vesey Review me! 21:47, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikimedia errors.

There seems to be a lot of Wikimedia errors going on today. I just hope you realize this if other people are having it too. Jhenderson 777 17:42, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

If you describe the errors, it is likely they will be corrected. (talk) 01:52, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
WP:VPT is a better place to report it.—cyberpower ChatOnline 01:56, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Work offline if possible: It is always a good idea to keep some offline copies of articles to edit (or read) in those times when the MediaWiki software is being upgraded (happens every 2 weeks now?), those times when people get lots of "wp:Wikimedia Foundation error" which causes the prior edit-buffer changes to be lost. It does not take long to think of "10" pages to save to PC, for later reading on a day when Wikipedia crashes often. During edits, always copy the latest buffer-text into an offline file. Also, consider starting each edit session with a "Show-Changes" type of preview, to anchor the edit-buffer to hold keystroke changes in case of Internet transmission errors. People who start editing a page without an initial edit-preview will risk losing all changes during a transmission error, unless they also copied the edit-buffer text into a local file, for later recovery. -Wikid77 (talk) 02:38, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Ok thanks guys. It was mostly going on yesterday. Who knows what the error was except that the Wikimedia Foundation was saying there was a error when I went on this site. I had to refresh the page a lot. Jhenderson 777 16:45, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

The NXIVM complex of articles

On the one hand, we could look at the silence that greets our repeated pleas at the BLP noticeboard for help with the NXIVM complex of articles and say “Well, that failed.” Several of them did stop by to help out, but there was no indication that they were familiar with the sources.

On the other hand, we can now rest assured that many good BLP Noticeboard watchers now have the articles on their watchlists. This will make it difficult for any violations to happen, because the BLP watchers will notice and not allow it. When no one is looking, fans are much bolder in whitewashing, (for example, compare to the Spanish-language versions of the articles), but now, good people are watching. So this is progress; success!

We need an author or authors to use proper standard operating procedure, if the articles are to be WP:GOOD. It seems we are going to have to look elsewhere for that. But if not on the BLP noticeboard, where? Is there anyone around you who might be interested? All it amounts to might be is to say to someone "Here, read this and tell me what is says" to get things rolling.

Also, I was thinking about taking the library of WP:RSes available on this matter off of KR's talk page and putting them somewhere else where it might be more appropriate, such as the NXIVM talk page, but then I thought it might be better to organize them on a new Wikiproject page. I could start a wikiproject and organize and keep the WP:RSes there for future use by others, to make things easier on them. What do you think?

Thank you for your kind attention to this serious and important matter. Chrisrus (talk) 14:25, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Internet Defense League

meta:Requests_for_comment/Internet_Defense_League – Jimbo, what are your thoughts about this?

Also, meta:Requests_for_comment/Internet_Defense_League#Response_.2F_Proposal_from_Fight_for_the_Future:

We'd like to know if there's a way to break off with a group of wikipedia community members who are interested in the league to figure out the details of how Wikipedia and its community members participate in the league and come back with a complete proposal. This way, we can work out the questions of governance and participation in ways that make sense for Wikipedia.

Is there any way for Wikimedia to send a group of individuals with Wikimedia's principles, values, and interests in mind to meet with the League and to come up with a "complete proposal" as Holmes Wilson suggested? --Michaeldsuarez (talk) 15:12, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Possibly. I've been watching that used to list which seems rather drastic (but potentially very powerful and effective) but which is now listing that does seem like a very important issue which places the continued existence of the Foundation, Wikipedia and wikis in general at considerable risk. See also Wikipedia:SOPA initiative/Post-blackout activities and initiatives#Internet Defense League. (talk) 02:14, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
See also (talk) 22:23, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Commons and licensing of WMF-employee produced media

There's a discussion going on over at Commons, Saibo maliciously tagging work with clear licenses which Jimbo and other WMF types may be interested in. On one side the WMF people say that all work produced by them is automatically CC-BY-SA 3.0, the other side (initiated by Saibo, who has a history of WMF acrimony) says that there is a de facto rule that one is not allowed to upload the work of another, WMF and licensing or not. Tarc (talk) 13:49, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

One of the things that I think we always need to remember is that one of the most important ways to have an open, happy, tolerant, flexible, dynamic, and intelligent community is to set clear boundaries beyond which people are simply disinvited to participate further. It's one thing to have a legitimate disagreement on some fundamental issue, there's a lot of health to be found in that. It's not ok but understandable and forgivable that tempers will sometimes flare and apologies should be the norm. But at some point, we reach the end of the line, and we have to say: look, because we want to have an open, happy, tolerant, flexible, dynamic and intelligent community, you have to stop this behavior or leave. You are causing more trouble than you are worth.
Whether this is a case like that or not, I don't know because I'm not directly involved much at Commons. But the behavior you identify is patently absurd.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:31, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
Is this more soreness over the banning of a convicted child porn distributor, or simply that WMF is dumping useless crap on Commons? John lilburne (talk) 15:46, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
I find the "useless crap" argument to be a bit hypocritical. They're concerned with out-of-scope clutter when it comes to the WMF and screenshots on one hand, while choosing to retain the umpteenth iteration of breasts on the rationale that fat naked women in sunshine are underrepresented on the other? (note for the NSFW-minded: the link takes you to a deletion discussion, not the image itself). Tarc (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 17:26, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
Only one person called the files "useless crap"; it's not representative. It should be obvious that an image that is in use on the Foundation project (like any other), or which is plausibly useful for educating people about the WMF, should not be deleted from Commons without a compelling copyright issue, and the debate is about the way copyright permissions are documented. One user Stefan4 gave a pretty good argument in that conversation: OK, so who is going to create an explanatory template for reusers ("This image was uploaded by a WMF employee, so using it without {{licensereview}} is safe." / "This image was not uploaded by a WMF employee, so if this is not uploaded by the copyright holder and neither has {{PermissionOTRS}} nor {{licensereview}}, then it is not safe to use the image.") so that reusers know whether it is safe to use the image? True, to me this still sounds like counting copyright angels dancing on the head of a pin, but that's a very common pastime on Commons, especially for its opponents. Wnt (talk) 17:39, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Twitter account articles

There is a lengthy discussion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Ashton Kutcher on Twitter and Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Justin Bieber on Twitter as to whether there should be separate articles for twitter accounts and what the criteria for such articles are. There also exists Barack Obama on Twitter and Lady Gaga on Twitter which are currently not at AFD. Would you care to comment?Smallman12q (talk) 17:44, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

  • Only a matter of time for the rest. I floated the idea of nominating the Obama one about a month ago, and given the current climate that seems to favor ridding the project of this pop culture fluffery, I think it may be time. Tarc (talk) 18:06, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Actually, the lengthy discussion that is intended to sort out criteria is at the Village Pump. Uncle G (talk) 20:02, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
I have no strong opinion. I tend to prefer avoiding the creation of endless "intersection" articles (meaning, in this case, the intersection of twitter and particular famous people) but there can of course be valid exceptions.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 08:02, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Commons should host as much porn as possible?

At least one user thinks so. [[9]] Ken Arromdee (talk) 20:13, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

I don't think that was his point, actually... The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 21:58, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
No, I think that's a pretty accurate summary. He argues that the reason specific pornographic files rank so highly at commons is that there is a shortage of them. If we had a lot more, they would drop in the rankings (individually) by competing with each other. I am unpersuaded by the argument because I don't think worrying about the ranking lists is a valid way to think about the situation there. It's the least of our worries. I am much more concerned about privacy issues, licensing issues, trolling, lack of ability for end users to manage their own experience as effectively as they could with better software - all are known issues. The rankings is just a side show.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 07:59, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
Ah, I see what I misread. Well, Claritas is banned from, and I doubt this will endear him to many here; probably not a good move if you're trying to get unbanned. The wider implications have been discussed here before, so I'll leave it at that. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 10:53, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
If Wikipedia has already fallen to the level of banning people for making valid logical arguments off-site... Actually, I mostly disagree with him, but that's not the point! Wnt (talk) 14:29, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
We already have enough of those, thank you very much. benzband (talk) 11:09, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Do you think...

that God would have invented cats if he had known how hard they are to herd? I see he stopped short of inventing Wikipedia. :) -- Avanu (talk) 22:55, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

  • Wait, God invented cats as training for WP: For thousands of years, God has allowed people to work with cats so, one day, people would be better prepared to work with Wikipedians. Cats keep very odd hours, lie secretly in the shadows, and pounce on others when least expected. They don't converse and user_talk very much, but know a lot of tricks to make noise when they want attention. Plus, cats know what they want, and they want it now. Sound familiar? -Wikid77 08:10, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
Meow!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 08:14, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
I didn't know that Barry Gibb and Jimbo knew each other (✉→BWilkins←✎) 10:12, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you!

Brilliant Idea Barnstar Hires.png The Brilliant Idea Barnstar
You are the one who gave us the simply fabulous Encyclopedia, we can rely upon...

Hail Wales... Prathamesh Patki (talk) 14:27, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Removal of adminship

Hi. Being a believer in the idea of Institutional memory, I wanted to ask you about "how things used to be". My recollection is that: once upon a time, the community would decide to hold a discussion concerning an admin, and then at some point you would come in and assess/discern the community discussion, and subsequently take action (or not) based upon that.

First, am I remembering incorrectly? Second, anything you could expand upon that?

As a semi-related question, of late you have mentioned deferring/sharing various responsibilities to/with arbcom.

I'm presuming that the process to desysop is one of those.

With that in mind, what would you think of that past community discussion process being brought back, but having the arbitrators assess/discern, and then asking a bureaucrat to "push the button" for them, as it were?

We're discussing similar things at WT:RFA, but I thought I'd like to ask what your thoughts were on this.

(As I know that your talk page also doubles as a community forum, I'll place two sub-sections, to allow you and the community to both respond, should anyone so desire : ) - jc37 23:44, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

JW thoughts

(Jimbo answered below. -Wikid77 11:59, 2 July 2012 (UTC))
Well, he explained an interesting proposal, but he didn't answer my initial questions : )
(Though of course he, like any editor, if free to answer (or not) however he may choose : ) - jc37 15:37, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Anyone else? : )

Your comments indicate that you are not familiar with WP:Desysopping, which really ought to be the starting point for any discussion. Looie496 (talk) 00:17, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for the link! I don't think I've looked at that page since the around the time of the zscout situation. Though I recall quite a few of those listed on the page. A definite blast from the past. - jc37 00:33, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

I think there is a fundamental problem with only a black or white option in this. I know Jimbo has said in the past that he believes in eternal adminship unless there is a clear problem, in general society, we haven't adopted that same philosophy. Generally, people have terms that expire, or other limiting measures. In Wikipedia, the limiting measure is a general adherence to consensus. On a more limited level, this measure helps to prevent pervasive problems in some ways, but ignores other problems because they don't individually rise to the level of 'pervasive'. I will say that generally I find the admins on Wikipedia to be exemplary, and their conduct is usually very honorable. At times, there seems to be a Contempt of cop sort of reflex, which is incompatible with good adminship, but again, generally the conduct seems professional and commendable. -- Avanu (talk) 00:27, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

I don'¨t know of any society in which the job of a cop or janitor (the most reasonable comparisons with admins) are time limited. Admins are not a governing body, they are just enforcers.·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 18:36, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
We like to say 'cop' or 'janitor' but another analogy that might be of some interest, particularly if you are British and don't get wound up too tight: the House of Lords. A grand title, but very little power. But in theory (and sometimes even in practice), some independence and wisdom.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:15, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I guess we could introduce hereditary figurehead admins (I think that sounds more like ArbCom though), but wouldn't that be a little bit contrary to the kind of system we want to achieve?·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 17:01, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
This isn't a reflection on any particular admin. It's about whether having such a process in place would help alleviate concerns of commenters at RfA, and thus hopefully improve the climate. - jc37 00:36, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I would like to see us make 50 new admins a month under a new "probationary" system to be tried for 6 months. Under this system, anyone with 5 admin nominators would be made a sysop immediately "under probation" (1) allowing removal of the bit in case of serious trouble and (2) requiring a normal RfA vote at the end of 3 months, upon the conclusion of which adminship would either be held in the normal way or revoked. I think such a system would reduce the a priori judgment required for making new admins, allowing the RfA process to be less stressful, and would also bring in a wave of new admins with fresh insights.
Such a system, if tried for 6 months, would give enough time for the first 3 months worth of candidates to have made it all the way through the process so that we can evaluate and vote on the program as a whole.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:11, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
What happens when the 6th month expires? 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 10:31, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I would recommend that at the end of 6 months, a vote is taken to determine whether we want to continue it. During that vote, no new admins would be made, but admins created under the program would continue to run the course normally. If the vote is 'no' on continuing, then the admins still in 'probation' would continue and would need an RfA to confirm, but no one new would enter the program. If the vote is 'yes' on continuing, then we just keep going.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 11:00, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
That's sort of how we've been doing it on en.wv, Jimmy. From hard lessons there, I'd recommend one minor change: put these "probationary" admins in a different usergroup that any admin can remove but not add ('crats would add it, but any admin could remove it if there's an issue). Otherwise the usergroup would be the same (except maybe the ability to remove the buttons from other probationary admins). --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 17:58, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I like the idea. Please indulge one more question. How would the admin hopeful request consideration for the 5 nominations? Or how would it come about? 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 11:24, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
Those details could be in the written policy, for a primary nominator to seek 4 others. -Wikid77 11:59, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I am planning out an idea to reform the RfA process through a separate RfC proposing a serious of alternate ideas. I am in support of Jimbo's proposal and I think I will include it as a proposal.—cyberpower ChatOffline 11:44, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
That's true Wikid77. I imagine it could be a routine request for permissions as well, where it remained in the queue for a specific time until it either got 5 endorsements or failed. I am also wondering if it should be a net 5 endorsements to give opposition a voice? 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 12:07, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I think my basic idea (which only in part originated with me, with parts of it drawn from many past proposals) should be tweaked. But one tweak that I would resist is something that turns this into another voting process. If we're going to do that, we might as well change RfA to just say that you have to get 5 more yes votes than no votes. No, what I like about this idea is that we know there are good people who we could get involved in being admins if the process were not so gruesome. If someone gets the bit rather easily for a 3 month trial, it gets pretty hard to vote 'no' if they've done a perfectly fine job.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:26, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
Overall, this is a good idea. The current RFA system is often unnecessarily rude and puts off many capable editors.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 12:57, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

It's not a bad plan; although I'd make it "5 regular editors" (being defined as having X experience) to avoid the risk of insular/clique situations. But the WMF legal would almost certainly block such a move because of the deleterevision access concerns. --Errant (chat!) 15:00, 2 July 2012 (UTC)

Nod on the latter point. Undelete and see deleted material seem to be the big concerns. - jc37 15:39, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
While I think it wouldn't be a good idea to make it just "5 regular editors" (explanation in a moment), I don't think WMF legal would object. It's up to us, i.e. a community matter, as to who gets adminship. They've never expressed a view on it, and while I require identification to the WMF for appointment to ArbCom, that's my decision, not from them. We don't require identification for adminship. Whether we should or not is an interesting question, but not one that the WMF has ever expressed any opinion on as far as I know.
My opposition to "5 regular editors" is that while I do think we existing admins are prone to insular/clique situations sometimes, that's unlikely to last for long if we really open up adminship by routing around the problem of RfA being too "a priori". Give the bit easily, take it away easily, during a probationary period.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:12, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
It's on the watchlist, so I hope that no one accuses me of canvassing for posting
Please see both: this, and this, for what I was referring to. There's a fair amount of surrounding drama, so you may want to wear your peril-resistant sunglasses : ) - jc37 22:22, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
@Jimbo; the point is they have said in the (recent) past that, for legal reasons, viewdeleted should be restricted to community vetted individuals - both on the basis that they are subject to scrutiny during RfA and because it limits the numbers. Ideas to seperate out the tool package have floundered for this very reason; the only reason Jc37 has gotten WMF sign off on his scheme is because it explicitly uses RfA style !voting to assign the proposed new access level. Handing it out on a trial basis has been, IIRC, rejected before as an option (by legal). It's silly/ridiculous, and I can't see any good reason for it, but that's how it sits. --Errant (chat!) 08:28, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
@Avanu. Re the idea that admins are like those roles that in general society have fixed terms of tenure. My understanding is that fixed terms of tenure are normal for elected politicians, company directors and trustees - roles similar to Arbcom or chapter board members where you have a limited number of people exercising authority on behalf of others. But adminship is fundamentally different to such roles as there is no shortage of mops and no reason to restrict the number of admins. In that sense adminship is more a qualification like a driving license, and where I live driving licenses are valid until you are seventy and then subject to periodic medicals. I'm less familiar with Pilot's licenses but I think there is a closer analogy as you can lose them through inactivity. You can lose your license for drink driving and various other offences, just as Arbcom sometimes has to desysop people, but if you don't misuse it then you are licensed indefinitely. ϢereSpielChequers 15:55, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I do like the idea Jimbo. So how do we get started? When do we start? 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 21:42, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
Just curious: if this goes through, would this become an acceptable process for admins who have lost their tools under "controversial circumstances" and have been advised that they must re-apply by way of the "normal RFA", to get their tools back? Bielle (talk) 22:23, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
I should think not. This process should be available to allow editors to "show their mettle", as it were, and demonstrate their ability rather than the current system which tries to guess at it; having lost the bit reverses that presumption and it seems clear to me that the trial process could not apply. — Coren (talk) 02:30, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
I think this process would definitely need some fairly high experience requirements for those making the nominations, in order to avoid having five new accounts turn up and nominate another new account for admin. I think it might also be wise to say that nominating editors can have only one admin in the pool at a time - so if you're one of five sponsoring an admin, you can't sponsor another until some period of time (three or six months, perhaps) has passed. Also, maybe you should make those RfA votes require a majority or at least a fairly large minority to desysop, but the candidate has to go back every three months for another vote until he gets a large majority.
All that said, there's still sort of a sticky issue - this makes it very easy for a faction of editors to get access to deleted revisions, by getting together to sponsor a candidate who, however temporarily, has free rein to survey whatever they want him to look up. I'm not sure whether that's a bad thing, and I'm not sure it isn't effectively happening now, but it's interesting. Wnt (talk) 00:12, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia is not finished

I'm astonished to find that we have no article about Count Robert le La Rochefoucauld in English Wikipedia. Naturally, the French Wikipedia does have an article. A guaranteed interesting story if anyone wants to take a shot at it!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:10, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

Okay, they started "Robert de La Rochefoucauld" (for French: fr:Robert de La Rochefoucauld). -Wikid77 05:07, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
I think the community would rather write articles on celebrities' activities on FaceTube, TwitBook, etc. --MuZemike 14:31, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
If you want to bitch about that go comment at the AFDs, not here. Albacore (talk) 15:05, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm not bitching, I'm only saying what is true. --MuZemike 15:33, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
See also fr:Bagad Kemper for a French featured article which doesn't have a page here. Albacore (talk) 16:58, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
I have a ton of fun working on Ainu people's articles precisely because I don't have to worry about bullshit from fan sites; I hate having to say this, but other than me, how many people seriously care about Yukie Chiri of Imekanu? The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 18:12, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
This many. benzband (talk) 18:31, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
I'd bet a substantial chunk of those are me, from refreshing the page to make sure the formatting of the images I was adding in looked right... truthfully, that's at least 1/4 of them right there (formatting and me don't get along very well). The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 18:42, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

"It is not up to us to finish the task" nor ought we avoid it. (ancient adage) Collect (talk) 18:37, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

I just pushed Joseph Vaissète in the direction of Aymatth2, who rose to the challenge. That, too, had an article on the French Wikipedia, that I found as a side-effect of Talk:Côte d'Ivoire#This is an encyclopaedia article, supposedly.. There are editors who rise to such challenges. Uncle G (talk) 19:51, 4 July 2012 (UTC)

If anyone sees an interesting article on fr.wikipedia that is missing on en-WP I'd be happy to translate it for use here. I've only done a handful so far, but have found it to be quite enjoyable. Jezebel'sPonyobons mots 00:33, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
See Category:Articles needing translation from French Wikipedia.
Wavelength (talk) 16:42, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
See also fr:Catégorie:Article à traduire.
Wavelength (talk) 16:55, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

Norway's premier weapons manufacturer and disruptive edits

Kongsberg Gruppen ASA is the official name of the company, as registered with Norway's government in the Entity Registry (Norway).

Should that not be a part of the article Kongsberg Gruppen?

Disruptive edit [10] ? --Vistamesa (talk) 11:40, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

Why not discuss that on the article talkpage in order to obtain WP:CONSENSUS to include it? (✉→BWilkins←✎) 11:50, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
Here's another idea: take a look at Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Sju hav and ignore the troll. --Eisfbnore (下さいて話し) 11:58, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

@Bwilkins: Can you please move this discussion to the talk page that you mentioned? Maybe your involvement will help preventing deletion of talk pages, such as what happened with this red link,

@Eisfbnore: Please start an Ad hominem discussion on my talk page. --Vistamesa (talk) 14:33, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

Internet access until July 9

Some people may lose Internet access on July 9.

A lakh (wikt:lakh) is 100,000—so 2.7 lakh is 270,000.
Wavelength (talk) 16:32, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

In most cases a DHCP renew can fix it, I'd suppose.--Jasper Deng (talk) 17:10, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

my experience with Wikipedia

I was a happy and (based on feedback from other editors) productive Wikipedia user for a few years, until a disruptive editor whom I shall call DE (for "disruptive editor," get it?) decided to target me with some Wikipedia bullying. Not only did he break all rules of civility -- including but not limited to foul language and name calling -- but he also used his user page to rally other people to cyberbully me as well. It got to the point where I couldn't log on without seeing a new nasty message from DE or another editor claiming to be DE's friend. Repeated attempts to get Wikipedia to resolve this issue led nowhere. Often, I was chastised for failing to follow proper dispute resolution procedures (which apparently have to be followed in a very specific order), admins often ignoring the obvious point that dispute resolution only works if both people are interested in resolution. Eventually, an admin took pity on me and pointed out to DE that he was being uncivil and unreasonable. DE responded that Wikipedia rules, especially rules regarding civility, don't apply to him. You would think that this would clearly indicate to any third party that DE was acting in bad faith, especially in the context of his user page, which was filled with complaints from other editors, often involving civility, and DE invariably responding by calling the person an idiot (or something similar) and saying that the rules don't apply to him.

Instead, the admin responded with a suggestion that we both "stay away from each other" for a cooling-off period. I obediently spent some time away from Wikipedia. DE ignored the admin's instruction, and used this time to utilize his user page to rally more support for name calling and cyber bullying. I eventually logged on and found a message from an admin that, because I hadn't pursued the matter (during my "cooling off period" that was an admin's suggestion in the first place) the issue was officially considered resolved. Any glance at either my own or DE's user pages would see that it hadn't been resolved at all. Not knowing what else to do, I retired my account. I now limit my Wikipedia edits to correcting minor spelling and grammar errors, and I do so anonymously. Whenever I see the term "Wikipedia community," my mind always extends the metaphor to "on the wrong side of the tracks." The Wikipedia community failed me completely. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:21, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

Cheer up. There is only freedom among the proles. (talk) 05:29, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Perhaps consider WP:Clean_start with a new username: Cases of bullying can be very difficult for busy admins to analyze, as it is possible for bored people to "invent" disguised trouble which, at first, seems to be angry users attacking the bully (but actually goaded as long-term "90 scratches create a wound"). Well, it takes a lot of time to show an admin how someone (or a wp:TAGTEAM) created trouble by a twisted series of 90 small, peculiar edits. Normal people do not want to spend hours of their time trying to prove such demented behavior for an admin to confirm. Hence, many users just invoke WP:Clean_start (WP:NEWSTART) to retire the old username, and invent an entirely new username to edit other articles, with the help of a friendly admin to avoid appearance of WP:SOCKpuppetry. Although it is hoped that people come here to help write interesting articles, there are some people who seem to come to compete, or "toy" with victims to prove they can "beat" other people by concocting warped cyber-games. So, use WP:NEWSTART to edit with a new username, and then perhaps months from now, the prior bullies will quit from boredom (or "find Jesus" on their road to Hell), and the former username could be reactivated, after only "going into hiding" for a limited timespan, and returning the original username from years ago. Please think of bullies as temporary, and an original username could be salvaged in the long run. -Wikid77 07:02, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
I would recommend neither editing as an ip (which has its own set of problems) nor starting a new account per WP:Clean_start. Instead, I recommend going back through your complaint and each time you make a factual claim ("foul language", "name-calling", "DE responded that..."). Without that, it is difficult for me to assist in correcting the problem.
I can help in two ways. First, and more important to you, I can seek to bring serious attention to your specific case and try to set things right, whatever that may involve. Second, and more important philosophically, if things are as you say then yes, the Wikipedia community failed you completely, and so I can help brainstorm about broader solutions.
We are in a general drive to improve editor retention. One of the apparent paradoxes of wanting to keep more (good) editors is to recognize that a certain number of difficult people simply need to be shown the door more quickly. It helps to have high-quality case studies so that more good editors can understand what needs to be done. It sounds to me like your example would be useful.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:06, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
I think some text is missing from Jimbo's comment. I imagine he wants to see some links to pages that illustrate the issues mentioned because there is no way to evaluate any of the claims made. Johnuniq (talk) 10:22, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
With all do respect to Jimbo these sorts of things are common place in Wikipedia these days and all one need do to find them is wander about a bit and they will be quickly evident. Even seasoned editors (myself included) are finding it harder and harder to perform edits without some editor crying foul about something. There are a few active editors who seem to be finding ever more imaginative ways of finding reasons not to edit and deeming more and more edits as unwanted (as in the minds of a narrow few conservatives). IMO we should be encouraging edits not discouraging them, we should be fighting to eliminate such destructive behaviors as article ownership and abusive behavior but more often than not these are simply ignored if the editor has been around for a while and even more often if that editor is an admin. Certainly being an admin has a certain level of stress but I have seen some rather abhorant behavior from admins that defies any extra gratuity that should be accorded to them. Clearly this editor had a bad experience with WP but this is by no means an isolated incident and in fact this is becoming more commonplace for new editors. Kumioko (talk) 16:54, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm glad to see Jimbo willing to take an interest in cyber bullying. Even though it is getting alot of attention in the news regarding children as victims, adults can and are victims as well. Alot of states now have cyber bullying laws that do in fact apply to Wikipedia as well, and I wish admins took it more seriously. We dont need a headline "XY commits suicide after cyber bullying on a Wikipedia noticeboard". Just because some one has been editing "for a long time" or "that's how they communicate" that never justifies bullying in a way that if we were children our teachers would send us to the principal's office. We aren't children, we should know better by now. We talk big about "zero tolerance" but that seems to be used against the people being bullied more than it is against the bullies, which then it ends up that the very Wikipedia policies and procedures then become the "bullies" and tools of bullying. (talk) 19:48, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
Really, there's no way to evaluate this without pointers to actual wikipedia users and events. There is a user I know of at the moment who is banned from 2 wikimedia projects, who has been screaming "bullying!" at the top of their lung,s but pretty much everyone from the WMF to Arbcom on down sees them as the aggressor. So if you have a problem with a specific editor, then name it and we can follow steps to see if the complaint has merit and if so, what to do about it. Tarc (talk) 20:07, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
Exactly. Real examples would be helpful. An abstract comment with no actual links or names or anything is just impossible to evaluate.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 02:19, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

Mr. Wales, you like to see real examples? Please take a look at the post just above your post this one. A named editor is called "aggressor" at your own talk page. Here are more real examples of user tarc harassing the user they mentioned in their post [11]. And about the mentioned user, not only they believe they are being bullied. I do too, and some others do too [12]. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:41, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

Good point, If a user is calling people "f*cking retard" or "psychotic a*hole" on Wikipedia Review ([post#63), then it is difficult to believe comments here claiming that other people are the bullies. The normal way to talk is to disagree with people's ideas, but not insult them numerous times in the process. -Wikid77 (talk) 11:00, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
The links above are to off-wiki condemnation of a banned user, they are of no applicability or purview here. What we're talking about here is an anon IP alleging abuse, but there's nothing to be done about it if no one can evaluate the case. Tarc (talk) 13:37, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
I think the idea is to have an example involving the user who made the complaint. If one admin really suggested a cooling off period and then another admin said that he can't complain because he had to complain during the cooling off period, surely he can post some diffs that show this. At most, all you're showing now is that at least one person bullies at least one other person. There's nothing to show that the person who complained is the one being bullied. (talk) 03:49, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

Bribes by a Norwegian company in Libya--references and text have been removed regarding Yara International

Can something be done about this disruptive edit [13]. That editor seems to be on a combined stalk-and-revert mission. Wp:Stalking? --Vistamesa (talk) 14:14, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

*sigh* It doesn't appear to meet the definition of WP:DISRUPT, and I see no proof of hounding/stalking. Have you followed dispute resolution processes? Jimbo is not the arbiter of articles ... WP:CONSENSUS is. If you have something that is not content-related and you have followed the processes in place, and yet still need urgent action, see WP:ANI (✉→BWilkins←✎) 14:25, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
I will take a closer look at dispute resolution processes. But it is my duty to inform Jimbo, when there seems to be a pattern of bullying on articles that might be (perceived to be) somewhat critical of my beloved nation.
I am trying to paint a picture here. Blanking of text and references in the Yara International and Kongsberg Gruppen articles, are partial symptoms that I have tried to describe.
To those who have been given the most, the most should be expected. I have been given access to wikipedia, something previous generations did not have. (To be continued) --Vistamesa (talk) 15:17, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
To paraphrase someone, somewhere: "from each according to the rules, to each according to consensus" (✉→BWilkins←✎) 19:53, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

Exception to your no template no div tags rule?

An editor recently put a countdown to the 4,000,000th article on your user page that I thought was pretty neat. Could you make an exception to your no templates or div tags rule for that? Ryan Vesey Review me! 13:03, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

Ok. :-)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:03, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
Done now I better get to some article creation, make this countdown tick a bit faster. Ryan Vesey Review me! 14:06, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Enter 5-million pool #2 before mid-July: Remember, time is running out to cast a vote in the WP:Five-million_pool_(2), to guess the date of 5 million articles, before the pool auto-closes upon seeing the 4-million count. We are still on track to reach 4 million articles by 15 July 2012. The WP:Six-million_pool will remain open until 4.8 mil. -Wikid77 19:57, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

Proposed policy regarding SOPA and its ilk

I just read an appealing editorial in Sciencetext available with free registration by U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Michael H. Posner, which blasts internet filtering schemes in various countries, and their effect on academic freedom, and calls for scientific organizations to get involved to defend academic freedom. I don't know if this missive is directed at [14] without wanting to give the initiative publicity by mentioning its name, but I hope so. To me this editorial sounds like just what the doctor ordered to organize a policy regarding our SOPA escapade and related future issues. Technically, advocacy like that could be said to run afoul of WP:NOT, so I think that some policy explaining and also limiting the scope of our efforts could be advisable, and so I'll propose WP:Academic freedom for consideration. Admittedly, I don't know how you or anyone else will react... Wnt (talk) 14:46, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

Many people would say that there is a qualitative difference between the free dissemination the works of Crick and Watson, and the dissemination of the counterfeit drugs via GoogleAd riddled websites. SOPA was targeted at the later not the former. John lilburne (talk) 17:11, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
SOPA wasn't targeted. Formerip (talk) 17:27, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
So Google said as they got their shills to brew up a cauldron of FUD. John lilburne (talk) 18:11, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
SOPA was broader than what some people claimed to be about. If it allows censorship for virtually any reason, but proponents say "it's for counterfeit drugs", you're a fool if you believe that it's going to be limited to counterfeit drugs. "The law lets us do anything but we promise only to use it for this innocuous reason" never works out. Ken Arromdee (talk) 19:48, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
  • sigh* Judges are simple souls "primarily designed or operated for the purpose of offering goods or services in a manner that engages in, enables, or facilitates infringement, circumvention or counterfeiting, have only limited purpose or use other than offering goods or services in a manner that engages in, enables, or facilitates infringement, circumvention or counterfeiting, or be marketed by its operator or another acting in concert with that operator for use in offering goods or services in a manner that engages in, enables, or facilitates infringement, circumvention or counterfeiting" and will read the highlighted phrases to mean what they say in plain English. There was no over-reaching in SOPA - you were duped by Google shills. John lilburne (talk) 20:35, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
You can bold the text however you want, but the problem remains. "enables" means software that is not itself an infringement, but simply doesn't have censorship built in from the ground up. I don't trust Google at all, but every once in a while a big company ends up on the right side of an issue just by accident - especially when a law is so fundamentally un-American that it is at odds with the whole fabric of our society. Wnt (talk) 20:54, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
The key in that section is primarily designed or operated for the purpose if it neither primarily designed or operated for the purpose then what it enables is quite irrelevant. John lilburne (talk) 21:27, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
Primarily designed for the purpose of offering goods and services. With the effect of "enabling" something. Not a narrow effect. But I'm capping this off now - anyone who thinks that SETI can communicate with alien life has never seen the two of us try to talk about anything. Wnt (talk) 00:13, 7 July 2012 (UTC)
While it wasn't Wikipedia's issue with the bill, I should also point out that SOPA rolled back protections for generic drugs as part of its language against "counterfeit" drugs.[15] And as described in the article, it supported the criminalization of sale of brand-name, licensed prescription drugs by Canadian pharmacies - something Google had already been fined $500 million for before passage of the bill. Why exactly it's a national policy imperative to make Americans pay more for everything than people in other countries, I can't speculate (see also grey market); but if one views it as a matter of corruption... Wnt (talk) 21:03, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
I hope you aren't editing articles like that! Firstly the NYT article is about ACTA not SOPA, and secondly it quotes someone making an assertion that ACTA "appeared to roll back protections for generic drugs by lumping them in with counterfeit drugs" not that it did but that it appeared to. John lilburne (talk) 21:27, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
Sigh... I was rushing because I was off topic. Already. My proposal concerns academic freedom, and this sorry parade of anti-"counterfeit"s is another issue. Wnt (talk) 22:28, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
Twas you that added SOPA into the title of this thread, and linked to which appears to be more about freedom to pirate movies and songs, rather than academic freedom. John lilburne (talk) 22:53, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
You don't suppose that being afraid to look at a source without knowing what it is first might interfere with our fact-checking a little? Wnt (talk) 23:10, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
You tell me! One source is about academic freedom and Iranian crackdowns on a religion, plus a discussion on the Chinese and Russian governments doing what Chinese and Russian governments do. Your second link is to some amalgamation of Google funded groups banging on about how horrid it is that people are trying to protect their human rights via international agreements. John lilburne (talk) 23:36, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
And to respond to Wnt's concern about why prescription drugs, specifically, cost more in the USA than in Canada, it's a matter of law in both countries.

Manipulation of RFAs in de:WP

Hi Jimbo. The german Checkuser Kulac detected massiv Manipulations of RFAs in de:WP: by Sockpuppets Email-Anfrage. We are discussing possible consequences in the german Admins noticeboards. Greetings -- Andreas Werle (talk) 18:59, 6 July 2012 (UTC)

The efficiency dividend

I know you prefer to avoid discussions about technical software changes, so this is another performance issue which applies to general users, rather than internal software structure. An interesting effect in page-load speed I have found is the "efficiency dividend" that allows shortened templates to run even faster, on a busy system. This issue should be included in an essay about page-load performance. It explains why users can view the improved major articles so much faster (even if they do not want to consider the math behind the improvements). In rewriting templates which can run 9x faster than before, over the past 2 years, I have noticed how the "busy" servers occasionally show a slow-down, for pretty much everything, and that delayed response often seems 1.4x (140%) longer, so a complex page-load of 10 seconds becomes 14 seconds when servers are busy. The figure of 1.4x is a general approximation, and might run even slower (such as rarely 2x or 20 seconds) when the system gets very busy.

The quite interesting aspect of the 1.4x delay is, while it applies to both short or long pages, it intensifies the benefit of making pages shorter. For example, if a 10-second article display (worse case: 14-second) is reduced to only a 2-second load, then the math predicts an improved "worst case" of 2.8-second load (1.4×2) when servers are busy. This has been observed in live tests of faster pages. The net result improvement includes the worst-case difference of 14-10 versus 2.8-2 seconds, or 4 versus 0.8 seconds = 3.2 seconds. That 3.2 is the "efficiency dividend" (or "efficiency bonus"), because the worst-case page-load time, for the faster page, never incurs that prior 3.2 extra seconds, and only risks the 0.8-second delay added by 1.4×2 seconds. Hence, although the prior page-load time of the 10-second run was shortened to a 2-second run, the busy servers will no longer delay the page to a 14-second run (+4 seconds), only 2.8 seconds, and thus the users avoid the 4-0.8 or 3.2 extra seconds as an efficiency dividend when the servers are busy, and the delays would seem even more irritating. When compared to the total page-load time, the result is 14-2.8 seconds faster, or 11.2 seconds faster, not just the ideal run times of 10-2, as 8 seconds faster. That 11.2 savings shows the effect of adding the 3.2-second efficiency dividend, so a faster page avoids the potential 11-second delay of the prior slow page. The point is that by simply improving a page-load from 10 to only 2 seconds, the improvement also avoids that 11-second delay, which users had often experienced at times of the day when the servers were running slower. Now, applying that to real articles, with a major article (such as a nation) which has a common 20-second load time, then shortening the 20-sec to a 6-second load time also gains the efficiency dividend of (28-20) - (8.4-6)= 5.6 seconds. With busy servers, an improved major article would load faster by 14+5.6=19.6 seconds, almost 20 seconds faster at busy times.

Overall, the "rule of thumb" would be, for a speed-improved article, the new load time would be an additional 5.6 seconds faster, at busy times, or about +6 seconds faster. The efficiency dividend for faster major articles is, thus, also +6 seconds faster than the underlying, basic speed improvement. Simply by improving major-article speed 3x, we gain yet another 6 seconds we did not anticipate. That is why improving a major article, to run faster, can become even another +6 seconds faster, as a free "efficiency dividend". -Wikid77 15:48, 5 July 2012 (UTC)

I think that would have been better if it had all been chopped down to something more manageable. I got a feeling rather like on hearing the bit in Monty Python's The Meaning of Life about "Now before I begin the lesson; will those of you who are playing in the match this afternoon move your clothes down on to the lower peg immediately after lunch before you write your letter home if you're not getting your hair cut - unless you've got a younger brother who is going out this weekend as the guest of another boy; in which case collect his note before lunch, put it in your letter after you've had your hair cut, and make sure he moves your clothes down onto the lower peg for you." Dmcq (talk) 10:43, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
Well, that is very similar, with slow pages and their faster brother pages, playing games on the servers, where the servers will get busy and slower in the "afternoon match", so improve articles to run on the streamlined "higher peg" as being much faster (+6 seconds faster) during the match. -Wikid77 (talk) 12:03, 6 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Page load-time is 72% of busy time: Another rule of thumb, when considering performance, is to retro-calculate the actual, minimal page-load time, as 72% of the server's reported load time during busy periods, which happen several times during each day. The 72% is a ballpark estimate, but gives a fair impression of the delay. So, if the HTML-page source (<View><Source>) shows 10 seconds at a busy time, then apply 72% to get "7.2 seconds" as the actual page-load time if the servers were idle. Another way to view the efficiency dividend (above) would be to answer the question: "When the servers were busy in 2011, how much longer did major articles take to display for logged-in users?"  Answer: about +6 seconds. -Wikid77 (talk) 14:47, 7 July 2012 (UTC)

Username penalty: IP users see articles 5x-50x faster

We need to remind users to logout to view mainstream articles 20x 30x faster. Avoid the username penalty which reformats major articles so much slower than for IP users. In running tests of template speed, I noticed that registered users (logged-in) now view articles which are formatted 5x to 50x times slower than what the IP-address users see (due to IPs seeing the common, quick, cached copies of formatted articles). Some of us were recently trying to optimize template speed, and were able to make a core template run about twice as fast, rather than having hundreds of "sub-optimized" one-line templates. In running those tests, then I noticed that hundreds of major articles can be displayed for IP users in about 1/8 second, whereas the username-specific reformatting of those articles runs several times slower, typically 20x 30x slower for mainstream articles, such as classic encyclopedia topics with formatted references. As you probably know, the complex citation templates use vast amounts of time to slow a large text article from a half-second formatting into several seconds during an edit-preview or view by a logged-in user. Of course that's fine, when people expect to hit "Show-preview" and wait several seconds for citations and navboxes to be formatted into a half-second text article. However, more users should know to log out and view the major articles 30x times faster, and edit them when needed, but after edit-preview log-in before saving the changes with an unwanted IP-address user ID. I would hate for most registered users to think that big Wikipedia articles are really displayed as excrutiatingly slow as when users are logged in. Logout and view the major articles 30x faster. Stubs display at the same quick speed either way, due to few {cite..} or navbox templates piled on those stub pages. Long term, I am wondering how to change major articles into simple large text pages that still format within one second, perhaps using dozens of quick templates. Reduce the current username penalty. -Wikid77 (talk) 17:49, 1 July, revised 00:14, 3 July 2012 (UTC)

Assuming one is not a computer, then I don't see why this matters. I very rarely have to wait more than a second or two for an article to appear. I don't know what my reading rate is but I would say 30 words a second is a decent upper bound. So at the very worst this costs me the time to read a couple of sentences.
This will matter for bots of course. But then they shouldn't be running off cached pages most of the time... Egg Centric 21:40, 1 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Only major articles slow, not stubs or small articles: Thanks for noting the difference. The problem is typically a speed factor for only major articles, such as the top 500 articles on any mainstream topic, where the {cite} templates have been used extensively (or navboxes are large). I think a typical infobox formats within 1 second, so a large half-second text formats within 1.5 seconds with an infobox. However, the various {cite} templates use the gargantuan Template:Citation/core with over 620 parameters in the markup, so using {cite...} often adds several seconds to the formatting time, at the rate of nearly 1 second per 13 {cite} transclusions. The result is that a major article formats in over 11-12 seconds, rather than 2-3 seconds, for registered users, or for anyone during edit-preview. Because the Internet is typically very slow (with exceptions such as Google Search), then many registered users do not realize that IP users see major articles several seconds faster than they do. It is an issue that I have been trying to improve for years (working on {cite-fast} templates which run 85 per second, 6x times faster), but Jimbo has advised to avoid "all templates" which would also solve the problem, but many templates (such as infoboxes) are valuable, so we just need to optimize (and reduce) the larger templates. -Wikid77 (talk) 11:46, 2 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Making major articles 3x faster for editing: Okay, the reality, obviously, is that cached copies of articles will always be, typically, over 10x faster than any optimization of reformatting. A major article that IP users view in "0.249 seconds" is likely to reformat in over 11 seconds (44x slower), and my efforts at optimization are showing reformat times no faster than 5 seconds (20x slower than the cached copy), even though twice as fast as major articles display now. I think we could get major articles to reformat 3x times faster, to allow faster edit-preview of the whole page, by having special versions of templates which are specifically fast for the basic parameters (so for rare customized parameters, use the larger massive templates). Extensive functionality seems to be the enemy of speed, because checking for use of extra features, or giving users helpful advice during use, causes extra overhead and slows the whole template, or leads to n-variety sets of similar templates which are difficult to update in similar, synchronized functionality. A possible strategy would be to have 3 types of related templates:
  • Template:Hogger - the typical massive template with many features
  • Template:Hog_fast - a smaller version with only the basic features
  • Template:Hog_helper - a training-mode version which warns of errors.
From the tests I have run, I am seeing that any template with many parameters will be something of a resource hog. This confirms Jimbo's advice to avoid large templates. Hence, we have the infobox templates, but they tend to slow reformatting by 1 second each, so limit their use (having 20 infoboxes in an article could slow the article by nearly 20 seconds). We can live with 1 or 2 large infoboxes per article, no problem. However, {citation} templates for 200 footnotes per article are going to eat major time, currently 1 second for every 13 footnotes, or almost 15 seconds for 200 footnotes. Instead, many people are hard-coding several footnotes, in areas, so not all "200 footnotes" use {cite} templates. The tests for the experimental {cite_fast} run faster as 70x per second, or almost 6x faster, but 200 footnote templates would still consume 3 seconds of reformat time, so again, hard-coding many footnotes (where the detailed parameters are not needed) can keep 200 footnotes below 3 seconds of formatting with a {cite_fast} template. -Wikid77 00:14, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
I've run a couple tests myself using citation templates. I did 3 tests: one with just the urls, one with full citation templates, and one with short Harv citation templates in the "Notes" section that called the longer templates in the "References" section. The no-template was obviously the fastest. The one with 200 full citation templates was the slowest, and the one using Harvard templates was in between. It's a good option for articles that have a lot of citations to the same source. ~Adjwilley (talk) 02:16, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
The discussion at Wikipedia talk:Featured article candidates/Citation templates (technical) is useful background reading. A fuller debate exists at Wikipedia:Centralized discussion/Citation discussion. It's demoralising to see how the actual solution (extend cite.php and move away from templates) is opposed at Demo of specific proposal for all the wrong reasons. Any technical solution that requires changing something is likely to fail because of the culture of inherent Ludditeism that exists in Wikipedia. --RexxS (talk) 07:33, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
  • The vcite solution is great for now: Most users would be stunned to realize the articles will reformat or edit-preview 3x (thrice) as fast now, using Template:Vcite_book (etc.). Awesome! As for internal changes to Cite.php, I try to also consider the "worst possible scenario" of how the proposed internal PHP functions might include some hideous bugs, stuck for years, because template coders could not help to fix them. Instead, by using fast-cite templates, we can gain 80% more speed now, while also fixing any format bugs, within days, rather than months or years. Reducing a 23-second edit-preview to only a 8-second wait is a wikimiracle at this point. Beyond the cite templates, we can also optimize other issues, to gain even more speed than from citations alone. -Wikid77 15:48, revised 23:59, 3 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Possibility of caching subst'd template results: Another tactic, which could be used in rare circumstances, would be to create "segmented articles" composed with cached segments appended to the current markup text. We could take very slow portions of articles and run the templates as wp:subst'ed, then save those segments and transclude them into the final article. For example, with an article named "Mars colony":
  • Mars_colony/dynamic_map - a segment with a complex (slow) map template
  • Mars_colony/dynamic_map_cache - a segment with the subst'ed template(s)
  • Mars_colony - then transcludes {{Mars_colony/dynamic_map_cache}}
The rule would be that changes should be made to the template-based segments (not the cache versions), which are subst'ed into the cache-based segments, and then the cache files are appended into the article, allowing massive slow templates to be used in a huge article which reformats (around the cached segments) within seconds. -Wikid77 (talk) 17:29, 4 July 2012 (UTC)
You know that Tim is working on Lua ("scheduled for 2013")? The aim is to replace frequently-used templates with a new and much faster system. Johnuniq (talk) 00:35, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Conversion to fast Lua language: Thanks for noting that option for 2013. It would be great to have the ultra-efficient Lua scripting language, with loops and recursion, even if more complicated for many users. Beware that a massive change in technology is a typical tech solution for "deus ex machina" and typically needs almost a year longer than hoped (=2014?) to "quickly save the day". There is also a danger of interface overhead, such as a "faster" system needing a "10-second" connection link (hopefully not with Lua). Often, a rewrite can duplicate unneeded complexity, and there might be a feeling to handle all "620" parameters now in Template:Citation/core. Meanwhile, I am still focusing on actions to take within a few weeks, which already show 3x speed improvements. Long term, the use of Lua might allow extremely smart, and yet fast templates, so that is another benefit beyond today's cumbersome templates. -Wikid77 06:27, 5 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Working on essays about performance: I think we will need several essays about various performance issues, depending on people's level of perspective, such as explain how an article can process over 900 templates per second, but they must be (very) small templates. There are too many topics to cover in a single essay. One essay already introduces the readers to technical performance issues:
We need a new essay about making templates run much faster. For example, passing only a dozen parameters to a template, rather than 100, can make a template run almost twice (2x) as fast. Another option is to have gated-if structures running 3x faster, which test for perhaps 16 rare parameters to exist, before checking the value of each of those 16 parameters separately. A gated-if structure with 1 parameter can run 5 times faster. -Wikid77 (talk) 11:15, 6 July, revised 7 July 2012, 13:01, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Forking large major articles to: (full)

I am re-thinking your advice to have smaller, more-focused articles on major topics, perhaps named as article "xx" with the current large version renamed as "xx (full)". I initially thought the Simple English Wikipedia would handle the issue enough, but now, I think we really need to have 2 versions of major articles, here, as you suggested long ago. I was looking at article "YouTube" and thought "way too big" for general readers. So perhaps:

  • new "YouTube" - a smaller article, limited in size (perhaps 700 words?)
  • new "YouTube (full)" - the original large article moved to a new name.

Otherwise, I really would fear wholesale deletion of extra information, such as the interesting list of other nations having YouTube versions, but all of that extensive description overwhelms the basic details of the 6 W's ("who, what, when, where, why, and how"). In many cases, the full article is almost "YouTube (rant)" because of the tedious detail, but obviously, we cannot label articles as "rant" simply because they contain 5x-9x times as much detail as most readers seek. There could be numerous cases, such as a notorious crime article, where the "(full)" version could include lists of forensic evidence to explain "whodunit" or why other suspects were freed, while allowing a smaller article to generalize the issues (but knowing the "(full)" version explains things oversimplified in the top, condensed version). Since you have already thought about this issue, and content forks are entirely valid, what other concerns should we address before making such article forks?

From a practical standpoint, I would focus on the 100 (or 1,000) most-viewed articles, and count what percentage of them need a simplified overview article. In terms of Wikipedia performance, everyone would benefit from the numerous advantages: most readers would see the nutshell version they expect; the smaller article would appear within 2 seconds; large articles could be protected from excessive trimming of details; limiting size (700 words?) would discourage POV-pushing (where currently, tangent comments are allowed in large articles because wp:NOTPAPER protects long sections); and ideally any POV-pushing in "(full)" versions would have less impact (because few people would read the massive full versions). Currently, WP is a major "advert-magnet" because people know any boosterism wedged into major articles has a good chance of being info-spammed into the "captive audience" who view the major article by name, whatever that name happens to display. Any other thoughts or advice? -Wikid77 (talk) 06:42, 7 July 2012 (UTC)

Ideally, I think the lead sections of all articles should combine to something like the Micropædia. —Kusma (t·c) 08:56, 7 July 2012 (UTC)
See also: Introduction to general relativity and general relativity. benzband (talk) 09:25, 7 July 2012 (UTC)
I set up an RfC at WT:Article size#RfC: Should the rule of thumb for article size refer to readable prose size or markup size? which I believe is relevant. I should be neutral about notifying about that but I think the featured article candidate editors have completely forgotton and don't care about WP:NOTPAPER and just want to produce the equivalent of printed papers on the topics. Dmcq (talk) 10:57, 7 July 2012 (UTC)
I just had a look at the Youtube article and personally I would consider it a large article where bits should be turned into sub-articles if they grow to any size but not one where that should be a major consideration of the editors yet. Perhaps what is wanted is an easy way of just viewing the lead of an article? That perhaps could be an option which is automatically invoked in mobile profiles so they have to click on a button to get the whole article downloaded. Dmcq (talk) 11:10, 7 July 2012 (UTC)
I've just put a proposal at WP:VPT#Section viewing about how one could deal much better with download time. I still think the FAC editors tend to push articles so they are about twice the readable size even with a good computer. Dmcq (talk) 13:24, 7 July 2012 (UTC)
  • I am thinking to allow users to see the smaller overview article, first, and then choose to see the larger article, whether a featured article, or not. -Wikid77 12:53, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia's red or not?

If you saw an editor adding hundreds of new red links (links to nowhere) in existing articles, would that be cause for concern? Would it depend on circumstances? Do you like red links or hate them? How many people see a red link and think "I must go immediately and research that topic and create a new article" versus simply saying "Eh, the good samaritan behind me on this road will take care of it" and pass it by? -- Avanu (talk) 04:23, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Red link.—Wavelength (talk) 04:45, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
I have. I want to see other opinions. -- Avanu (talk) 06:16, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Wavelength - the attitude of "See this policy document" is of no use at all. doktorb wordsdeeds 06:42, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Personally, I have never been a fan of redlinks unless there is a realistic chance of creating the corresponding article in the near future. Speculative redlinks are of little use.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 07:23, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
The redlink needs to be notable - it could have an article but is just not written yet. Interestingly we have means of finding redlinks on a most-wanted-list where the number of incoming links to any non-existant article shows its relative importance and article creators pick their chores from that. Anyway suitable redlinks are great, turning them blue is the icing on the cake. Agathoclea (talk) 07:39, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
  • The "is the red link notable" question goes to the core of my issue (and Avanu shares this too, hence their question!). A policy is being used as a "free pass" for notability, something I'm disputing. doktorb wordsdeeds 07:54, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
    • Yes, the notability of the issue is key: redlinks should only be added of there is a chance of the article eventually being created. In this specific situation, redlinks are being added to either sitting or past MP's. MP's have been held by WP:POLITICIAN to be suitably notable for articles, and thus there is a reasonable chance that an article could be created that is suitable for Wikipedia. Doktorbuk has stated that they disagree with that notability and has therefore been removing redlinks. Wikipedia is not finished, but this discussion and the related disruption caused by continually removing said redlinks should be. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 10:34, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
      • And if the name of the politician happens to be the same as that of a rapist, and the article on the rapist gets created first, what happens to the redlink in a political article, where does it suddenly link to? John lilburne (talk) 13:16, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
        • There was an analogous but opposite situation in lists of gay porn performers, with no care was being taken to ensure that the name of the performer was not the same as an existing article, leading to a situation where "red links" in the lists actually ended up being blue links to existing articles. Not everyone shared my opinion that labelling someone as a porn performer was a clear violation of our policies on biographies of living persons. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 14:09, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

While I agree that speculative red links should not be used, I disagree with this bit of advice from Wikipedia:Red link: "However, rather than using red links in lists, disambiguation pages or templates as an article creation guide, editors are encouraged to write the article first, and instead use WikiProjects or user spaces to keep track of unwritten articles." I don't know of any good reason for that. I think using red links in lists, disambiguation pages, etc. are a good way to organize work and motivate other contributors.

The BLP issue outlined above is really a separate issue which will not apply in most cases of red links. But it is of course a valid issue. If a red link seems likely to cause a BLP violation if the corresponding article is created ambiguously, then I can see a strong case for avoiding it. But that's a small percentage of overall links.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:49, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

  • You'd be surprised how often it does occur. Whilst those two are historic figures I have no doubt that it will occur with living figures too. John lilburne (talk) 14:33, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
  • It's not necessarily a BLP issue, of course. One answer to John lilburne's question is, after all, "The same as happened at User:Skysmith/Missing topics about Mechanics when it was discovered that one of the few bluelinks in that list is an article on sexual bondage.". ☺

    The question at hand, that you may not have seen the whole of, isn't a BLP issue. It's actually a biographies of very dead people issue; a biographies of very dead politicians issue, more specifically. See the Village Pump discussion for what the question that you've been asked here actually relates to.

    Uncle G (talk) 15:11, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Commons flouting copyright law?

I've just been told that my sweat-of-the-brow copyright under UK law is, by policy, ignored, and the restoration work is to be recategorised into the public domain. (Wikipedia:Featured_picture_candidates/First_colored_senator_and_reps.jpg#First_colored_senator_and_representatives and )

As I was only asking for a CC-by license - the absolute minimum - and only then because I was tired of seeing unscrupulous print sellers selling things for £100 when people could download it and print it themselves, I'm horrified by this behaviour.

I mean, seriously, Wikimedia has a policy of forcibly removing a requirement that their content creators be credited, and all because it's possible that the European court might rule the UK sweat-of-the-brow doctrine invalid at some point in the future. Wikipedia is not a crystal ball.

A restoration takes between about 8 and 50 hours to do right, and I have generally offered this up freely. However, at the moment, I've restricted access to my full-size restorations until and if this is sorted out to some sort of reasonably satisfactory conclusion.

Honestly, I wouldn't even have minded so much if this wasn't basically a violation of meta:Don't be a dick. I was offering my works to everyone to use freely, but people decided to attack me for doing so? Seriously?

Thank you,

Adam Cuerden. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:52, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

See Sweat of the brow. This is accepted in the UK but rejected in the US and really I don't think you can expect much by it on an American based encyclopaedia when doing American senators! Personally I support sweat of the brow as a limited copyright. However I think copyright should have a much shorter term the same as patents and only trademarks should have long term protection whilst in use. I'd include Mickey Mouse or a writers characters as trademarks so others couldn't write new stories using them. Dmcq (talk) 16:07, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
The work should have an additional notice about copyright outside the US in particular the EU. No way the public domain in the US bit can be taken out though. Dmcq (talk) 16:18, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Think you misunderstand the 1988 copyright Act. The sweat-of-the-brow has not been upheld in any UK court of law -ever. It is like suggesting that an accident car repair shop, which though the sweat-of-their-brows, restore a wreak to its original appearance and so can thus claim to have a copyright over that particular individual vehicle. A UK statute might state something but if the legal system finds it unworkable and too daft to uphold -then it is moot. In the description section and on the image's exif file ,if you wish, you can state that your are the restorer. Even, link to your web page or email. Just as long as its not seen as blatant advertising. Suggest: Upload the original un-restored image first and then your restored image after and the two will show up in the File History section, thus demonstrating your skill at using GIMP, Photoshop or whatever.--Aspro (talk) 16:41, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
When did the law ever find anything too daft? ;-) The requirements are easily low enough to allow copyright on that work in the UK. And even the case mentioned in that article about football listings is still under consideration as far as I know, it may be copyright or they might just put it under a database rights law - something the US also doesn't recognize. Dmcq (talk) 17:22, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
In the UK one can sometimes buy a castle or Manor which gives one the legal right of Droit du seigneur but if you can't enforces it, then that legal privilege is not worth a dime (or even groat). Copyright law endeavours grant a privilege to the original creator of the creative work and a legal remedy against anyone that transgress, not to those that do technical manipulations and reproductions. To do otherwise, would be to miss-attribute copyright – again something that is covered in the 1988 Act. So what the OP wants is probably illegal anyway, if one is so intent on following the letter of the law.--Aspro (talk) 18:03, 8 July 2012 (UTC) says you have to give me credit. (talk) 17:00, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Totally with you there, Adam. You should get a credit for the restoration. Formerip (talk) 18:15, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Credit is not the issue, I've already mentioned above, how credit can be indicated on these images. What the OP is claiming a CC-BY copyright over an original work, that is in the PD, something which the 1988 Act cannot confer.--Aspro (talk) 18:52, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
What I'm saying is that the OP should have a credit which, at the moment, he doesn't. Formerip (talk) 18:58, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Seems to me that he is claiming copyright on the parts of the restoration that have involved elements of creativity on his part. The image is still PD you can make as many copies of the extant image as you want. All fine. All the restorer is saying is that he has copyright on the restoration work and wants to CC-BY credit on that. John lilburne (talk) 19:07, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
But there is no evidence or legal precedent that that is true, simple faithful restoration of an image doesn't confer copyright in the United States, by simple faithful is I mean removing the subtle effects of age (yellowing paper), a scratch, crease in the paper, a stain, simply making it look more like it originally did before it was damaged/aged. This isn't really a high level of creativity, and there is no evidence that this kind of activity grants you copyright. Large scale restoration, like repainting a missing section of a painting, or coloring a black-and-white photograph that would, but removing a scratch or dust, wouldn't. That's the issue. — raekyt 19:11, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Since when does a UK court have to uphold a law passed by Parliment, EVER, before Wikipedia obeys it? This is an era of international corporations, when American companies like Apple, GE, and Microsoft have to consider EU regulators before merging, bundling, or producing a new product. The argument that this is an American organization so we dont care about British copyright seems silly to me. As does the idea that a British court needs to approve Parliment's laws. Parliment IS the "supreme court" of the UK. To my knowledge there is no court that could possibly invalidate Parliment's law, ever. Wikipedia should not ignore a sovereign law. Silly or not.Camelbinky (talk) 17:46, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
On this issue, Wikimedia takes exception to the UK law, see commons:Commons:When to use the PD-Art tag and specifically the comment by Erik Möller about this. — raekyt 18:07, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
The Wikimedia Foundation very much respects the copyright laws of all nations. What's tripping people up here is their emotional interpretation of the 1988 Act and the way they feel the law ought to be practiced.--Aspro (talk) 18:19, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
I think Erik Möller put it pretty plainly how they're going to handle this situation, specifically when it dept with the NPR legal threats. I don't see how this is much different, a individual UK citizen that is a contributor here by restoring images carries with it far less legal weight than the NPR, and Wikimedia basically said they're not going to recognize their legal claims. Adam may have legal copyright claims in the United States for restoration work that exceeds beyond the simple, i.e. recreating large missing sections of an artwork, but for simply color correcting, removing yellowing paper, small stains, scratches, dust, simple clone tool work, that doesn't grant copyright and would be something the foundation has already ruled in how they wish to handle that when it comes to Adam's claims of copyright. I mean if Jimbo wants to jump in here and specificly state Wikimedia's policy on simple faithful restorations of public domain images, that would be great, because right now there has never been an "official" legal position by wikimedia on this, and I pretty sure there hasn't even been a court case in the United States or UK dealing with this either, so it's really left up to interpretations. *shrug* — raekyt 18:25, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
First of all, to the best of my knowledge, the NPR didn't restore images, merely photographed/scanned them, and, at most, colour corrected them. I do a hell of a lot more than that. Also, there are small areas of missing information in this. (talk) 18:56, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Do you honestly assert that removing dust or a scratch is of such significant creative effort as to confer copyright? — raekyt 18:58, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
People on Commons assert that removing a copyright watermark on an image make the image a derivative. John lilburne (talk) 19:09, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
And what is the policy for that? heh. — raekyt 19:13, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Apparently they don't like watermarks, so clone them out just as if it was a dust mark, then claim that is justified as they can make derivatives. Naturally one major image donor of some 80,000 images disagrees and has stopped donating anymore images to Commons. John lilburne (talk) 19:24, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Maybe that is something that should be addressed in Common's policy if it's an actual problem? But absence of said policy just because some people think it does qualify as giving them copyright over the modified image by simply cropping or cloning off a simple watermark doesn't mean it's valid. — raekyt 19:28, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Because of the way the Commons works, if an image is freely licensed and it does have a watermark, it can be removed (but the original source/author/licensing information must be transferred over to the new image). I know there are a lot of people who do not think that and just put any license they want. I admit the Commons is a mess when it comes to this (and with the work I do on there, I do not deal with a lot of watermarked images unless I am involved in an OTRS compacity). User:Zscout370 (Return Fire) 19:32, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
The claim on Commons is that cloning/cropping out Copyright Management Information is covered under making a derivative work. If that is true then cropping/cloning out a dust spot or scratch is making a derivative work too. John lilburne (talk) 19:53, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Link to the actual policy that states that? — raekyt 19:56, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Pick your link. John lilburne (talk) 20:28, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
None of those support your statement that the remover of the watermark is granted any kind of copyright over the image from the act of removal, that is what I was specifically asking for. — raekyt 20:30, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Do try to keep up. The rationale for removing the CMI from the image is that it is allowed as one is making a derivative. If one is not making a derivative then one should not be cloning/cropping the CMI from the image. "A derivative work is a new, original product that includes aspects of a preexisting, already copyrighted work." thus Comnmons claims that cropping/cloning is indeed making "a new, original product". John lilburne (talk) 20:38, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
I think your confused here, a derivative work is yes a new work made with an existing one, BUT the creator of the derivative can only claim copyright on the NEW material added to the work, here we're talking about cropping an image to remove a watermark as a derivative, yes it's a derivative, but NOT copyright-able by the person making the derivative since no NEW ORIGINAL MATERIAL is being added to the work. Same can be said with removal of a watermark, your not adding new material, simply removing it. The extent of the cloning needed to accomplish this removal may stretch the issue, but very MINOR clone tool work I think would be extremely hard to claim is substantive enough to be covered under copyright. Again I don't see any policy of commons to backup your assertion... — raekyt 20:46, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Not I. You can alter an image under a CC-BY license if you are creating a derivative under copyright law. One cannot invoke the right to make derivatives to justify some action (cloning or cropping out) that is not making a derivative. So either the cloning/cropping out CMI is creating a derivative in which case the OP is correct, or it is not and the Commons policy of cloning/cropping is outside the license. I don't think one can have it both ways. John lilburne (talk) 21:03, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
It is not a case of having it both ways! You're mixing premises. The actions can be the same but the status of that -which is acted upon- can be different.--Aspro (talk) 21:24, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
At this point I don't know what your talking about, the laws behind what is copyrightable on a derivative work is pretty clear, and the OP was making an argument about sweat of the brow copyright not derivative work, and these are public domain images not CC images to begin with. You can't take an image and crop it then impose a copyright for that crop and expect that to be upheld in court, just as you can't take someone's book, add some annotations too it then claim copyright over the original book's wording, you only get to claim copyright on the NEW material (the annotations). A Derivative Work is not a copyright license, it's a legal term, and does not automatically confer copyright to whoever derived a new version of a past work, theres a threshold of originality that must be met. — raekyt 21:08, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Hmmm. The OP is not claiming copyright on the image but on the new material that he has added. However, it is claimed here that what the OP is doing does not create any claim in copyright as he is not creating a derivative under copyright law. OTOH Commons clones out 'watermarks' (Copyright Management Information) which is prohibited under Title 17 USC § 1202. Commons justifies the cloning out by arguing that the CC-BY license allows them to make derivatives. Thus the claim from Commons is that by cloning out CMI they are making a derivative. IOW if the OP does it then isn't a derivative, but if Commons does it then it is a derivative. John lilburne (talk) 21:38, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Adam, your skilful in what you do and as I pointed above there are was that you can claim 'credit'. But the law doesn’t work the way you think it does. Parliament produces 'good law' only, which is taken as a basic tenant. However, if courts find that some part are unenactable (unenforceable) because they can be easily demolished by Reductio ad absurdum then that part tends to get ignored. You might not like it but Parliament enacts a mountain of laws each year and if they had to go back and remove every unenactable line, phrase, or paragraph it would take them an age. So it is left to the courts. This PD issue has been discussed ad nauseam by Wikipedia and its sister projects. (Note: We have to defend PD as well without favour). Attributing a copyright to a PD work that you have rescued, without the consent of Parliament is not a right that you have under UK law. The Act would have to say something more specific about bring PD works back in copyright and it doesn't. That's why, no courts have been able to uphold it. Add your credits in the way I suggested and leave them as PD. Can you agree so we can close this section?--Aspro (talk) 19:41, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Aspro, I'm not sure how relevant the legal situation in the UK is but, judging from our article on sweat of the brow, you have it exactly backwards. It seems like the 1988 Act may be read as intending to abolish sweat of the brow, but the courts have declined to interpret it in that way. Formerip (talk) 20:04, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Formerip: The OP states “A restoration takes between about 8 and 50 hours to do right” suggesting sweat of the brow as justification par se for a CC-BY. So should you not be agreeing with me when I state above that the courts have not upheld this yet -when applied to works already in the PD? You must differentiate sweat of the brow for artistic creations, against sweat of the brow technical restorations and read the Act as it was intended. --Aspro (talk) 20:37, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
There is extensive creative work in figuring out how to fix elements (talk) 21:13, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
That might well be true -but that is not something that the law recognizes in the 1988 Act. The OP's question is is about the law. Believe me, I would love it to be the other way around. I could then slap copyrights on everything that I have ever sweated over. Life can seem unfair sometimes - if you look at it that way - but most people get over it.--Aspro (talk) 21:35, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Aspro, just above you were arguing that we should ignore the statutory wording and now you're making the opposite argument. Excuse me for not knowing how seriously to take you. And isn't "sweat of the brow for artistic creations" a contradiction in terms?
I think you're conflating what's moral with what's legal. If Wikipedia is a reliable place to look for the information, then the OP quite possibly is the legal owner of his restoration under UK law: "one can acquire a copyright by expending skill, labour, and judgement, but no creativity or inventiveness".
Like I say, though, I'm not sure how relevant Commons will find that. Formerip (talk) 21:46, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Formerip: Where do you think I have conflated my Premises? Where in the 1988 Act does it say one can acquire a copyright by expending skill, labour, and judgement, but no creativity or inventiveness? Are you trying, not to create a proper copyright argument but a Straw man? You can see why people have ridiculed the two Texas Republicans who want to ban:[16] . It might find favour with people who live out in the sticks but not in the big cities where one's job requires clear logical reasoning.  :¬)--Aspro (talk) 22:36, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Read for instance the section 'Making News Together' in [17] which says "The court held that the effort skill and time expended by Dr Sawkins were sufficient to consider them original works in the copyright sense." An earlier judgement said shorthand writers reports of public speeches were copyright. Dmcq (talk) 23:58, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
If you read the facts in that document it's pretty clear that this wasn't "faithful restoration" of a copyrighted work, there was substantial improvements and modifications, including adding new instruments, new base lines, and over a thousand other musical modifications to the original. If it was simply someone taking old analog tapes and converting them to MP3's and removing some minor audio imperfections like hiss and such, then that would be equivalent to the matter at hand. We're not talking about taking an image of a painting that was damaged and repainting part of the image to replace the damaged parts, or any other significant modifications during the restoration, that I've always said is probably copyrightable (probably because only a court would say so or not, not our place to rule on it), but for MINOR FAITHFUL REPRODUCTIONS, there's a difference here, the threshold of originality would need met, and even in the UK this isn't entirely trivial to meet. — raekyt 00:08, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
I think you're misunderstanding that case. It doesn't seem to be an audio restoration, but the correction and annotation of various written scores that had errors in them or of which no definitive version existed (ie he created hybrid versions for different sources).
On the other hand, audio remasters do seem to be copyrightable in the UK. If you're in the UK and own any CDs that have been remastered, check the copyright statement. Formerip (talk) 01:59, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
As I said above they should include both the PD license for the US and a CC-BY_SA or other one one for the EU. Dmcq (talk) 22:25, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
While I think it's questionable whether or not simple digital restoration is copyrightable, I see no reason not to allow the person who does the work to release their work under a Commons-compatible license if they wish. We already have tags, such as commons:Template:Licensed-PD-Art, which are used by institutions to release reproductions of public domain works under a free license. The point of such tags is that PD-Art law varies from nation to nation, and in nations where the PD-Art policy might not apply it is important to have a "fallback" license. I believe the same argument applies in this case - Adam's edits may be copyrightable in some jurisdictions, and content reusers in those jurisdictions would benefit from an assurance that the work is under a free license there. On the other hand, we should also be clear that in jurisdictions where that work is not copyrightable, content reusers are not obligated to comply with the license. Dcoetzee 04:07, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
I don't think commons:Template:Licensed-PD-Art is a problem, provided Adam is ok with it? It addresses my concerns making it clear that the work is public domain but may hold copyright in other countries, which is Adam's concern, I think. — raekyt 04:11, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
I think this case is similar, but not completely identical, to the Licensed-PD-Art case, in that we are not addressing only copyrightability of a slavish digital reproduction, but also threshold of originality (whether his alterations rise to the point of copyrightability), which also varies between jurisdictions. As such a slightly different template might be needed, stating something like this: "This work has been digitally restored, and those modifications have been released under the following license: (license) In some jurisdictions the changes involved in digital restoration are not copyrightable, and complying with the above license is not compulsory." Dcoetzee 04:31, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
If the text is changed to ""This work has been digitally restored, and those modifications have been released under the following license: (license) In some jurisdictions, the changes involved in digital restoration may not be copyrightable." I'd agree. Though I think it's ridiclously convoluted, as it's not like a CC-by license is at all restrictive, and it guarantees worldwide copyight status. But then, Wikipedia regularly states core principles (e.g. Commons attempts to be a repository of materials that can be used worldwide) then ignores them whenever it suits. (talk) 10:03, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Your page at

Hi, Jimbo. I think some changes are needed on your user page at I was reading it and I could find a few errors; probably good faith mistakes when translating. Some sentences apparently don't have the desired meaning. I was about to fix that, but I don't see the text in English I can use as parameter. If you can provide a text, I bet there are a few users that could help on improving that page. A link to that text in English works (or, if you want an update, a new text is also fine). Regards.‴ Teles «Talk ˱@ L C S˲» 08:31, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia's red or not?

If you saw an editor adding hundreds of new red links (links to nowhere) in existing articles, would that be cause for concern? Would it depend on circumstances? Do you like red links or hate them? How many people see a red link and think "I must go immediately and research that topic and create a new article" versus simply saying "Eh, the good samaritan behind me on this road will take care of it" and pass it by? -- Avanu (talk) 04:23, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Red link.—Wavelength (talk) 04:45, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
I have. I want to see other opinions. -- Avanu (talk) 06:16, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Wavelength - the attitude of "See this policy document" is of no use at all. doktorb wordsdeeds 06:42, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

Personally, I have never been a fan of redlinks unless there is a realistic chance of creating the corresponding article in the near future. Speculative redlinks are of little use.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 07:23, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
The redlink needs to be notable - it could have an article but is just not written yet. Interestingly we have means of finding redlinks on a most-wanted-list where the number of incoming links to any non-existant article shows its relative importance and article creators pick their chores from that. Anyway suitable redlinks are great, turning them blue is the icing on the cake. Agathoclea (talk) 07:39, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
  • The "is the red link notable" question goes to the core of my issue (and Avanu shares this too, hence their question!). A policy is being used as a "free pass" for notability, something I'm disputing. doktorb wordsdeeds 07:54, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
    • Yes, the notability of the issue is key: redlinks should only be added of there is a chance of the article eventually being created. In this specific situation, redlinks are being added to either sitting or past MP's. MP's have been held by WP:POLITICIAN to be suitably notable for articles, and thus there is a reasonable chance that an article could be created that is suitable for Wikipedia. Doktorbuk has stated that they disagree with that notability and has therefore been removing redlinks. Wikipedia is not finished, but this discussion and the related disruption caused by continually removing said redlinks should be. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 10:34, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
      • And if the name of the politician happens to be the same as that of a rapist, and the article on the rapist gets created first, what happens to the redlink in a political article, where does it suddenly link to? John lilburne (talk) 13:16, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
        • There was an analogous but opposite situation in lists of gay porn performers, with no care was being taken to ensure that the name of the performer was not the same as an existing article, leading to a situation where "red links" in the lists actually ended up being blue links to existing articles. Not everyone shared my opinion that labelling someone as a porn performer was a clear violation of our policies on biographies of living persons. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 14:09, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

While I agree that speculative red links should not be used, I disagree with this bit of advice from Wikipedia:Red link: "However, rather than using red links in lists, disambiguation pages or templates as an article creation guide, editors are encouraged to write the article first, and instead use WikiProjects or user spaces to keep track of unwritten articles." I don't know of any good reason for that. I think using red links in lists, disambiguation pages, etc. are a good way to organize work and motivate other contributors.

The BLP issue outlined above is really a separate issue which will not apply in most cases of red links. But it is of course a valid issue. If a red link seems likely to cause a BLP violation if the corresponding article is created ambiguously, then I can see a strong case for avoiding it. But that's a small percentage of overall links.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:49, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

  • You'd be surprised how often it does occur. Whilst those two are historic figures I have no doubt that it will occur with living figures too. John lilburne (talk) 14:33, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
  • It's not necessarily a BLP issue, of course. One answer to John lilburne's question is, after all, "The same as happened at User:Skysmith/Missing topics about Mechanics when it was discovered that one of the few bluelinks in that list is an article on sexual bondage.". ☺

    The question at hand, that you may not have seen the whole of, isn't a BLP issue. It's actually a biographies of very dead people issue; a biographies of very dead politicians issue, more specifically. See the Village Pump discussion for what the question that you've been asked here actually relates to.

    Uncle G (talk) 15:11, 8 July 2012 (UTC)

The redlinks that the Doktor is complaining about are about members of the English Parliament from the 1300s, where the person creating the redlinks is systematically setting up rosters of articles that indisputably will pass our standards of notability. Doktorb just seems to find the presence of lots of redlinks aesthetically offensive. --Orange Mike | Talk 19:07, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
A redlink should be treated as a request for an article by the person who caused the redlink to exist (including by deletion.) Removal of a redlink should be treated as a statement that the encyclopedia would be better without such an article, or that the context of the redlink would be better without the redlink. That last part causes trouble. Redlinks are seen as shameful so there is the force of fashion against them. (talk) 19:54, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia's techno black hole

Would it be too much to ask of Wikipedia that its basic editing tools be workable? The toolbar has been sliding from flawed to nonfunctional for a long time. Is this the Wikipedia black hole of space? At the moment, I can't do an "Insert" for the links here. Can't Wikipedia do better than this at enabling its editors? Maile66 (talk) 11:16, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

  • Need Classic-Wikipedia stable interface: I agree that the constant changes are quite frustrating, and upon reading many complaints at WP:PUMPTECH, I have noticed that numerous users go ballistic when "everything" breaks after each upgrade to an unstable version of the MediaWiki software or tools. The real wakeup-call, for me, was going to website "Deletionpedia" and seeing everything work so fast, and predictably, as it formerly did here. The archaic Deletionpedia was a marvel of fantastic functionality, as Wikipedia once had. My old computer settings are still as rapid and functional as they were 2 years ago, but English Wikipedia (and many/most other-language Wikipedias) are twisted, warped, and hacked. We simply need a top-level Classic-Wikipedia interface, with "no additives, dyes, fillers, or meat-byproducts" slipped in to convolute the editing experience. I sympathize that the developers are trying to make things better, with incredible difficulties, but when everything keeps getting worse, now with periodic 2-week upgrades, it is just a sad situation. I think a Classic-Wikipedia interface would be the best solution, with just a handful of mandatory changes added. For example, for new pages, they took away the "[_] minor edit" button, and totally destroyed the tab-sequence to reach the Preview-Changes button. That was a completely unneeded change, and another blackhole goofism, as someone, within days, even noted that creating minor redirects is a reason to still mark new pages as "minor". As I noted, long ago, when numerous awkward changes are made for "creeping featurism" then the whole system becomes "featured creepyism" which is it now, without a doubt. -Wikid77 (talk) 20:53, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

A kitten for you!

Kitten in a helmet.jpg


D vsquez (talk) 19:12, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Russian Wikipedia protests CIS version of SOPA/PIPA

ru:Википедия:Законопроект № 89417-6 see also [18]. (talk) 08:04, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Here's more coverage, from Index on Censorship. [19] Robofish (talk) 11:55, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Alert !

Hello Mr. Jimbo.

I want to point out to you a problem, which I have identified in the current interpretation by other editors of WP:NOR:

If someone would mix a poison "X" and some fruit juice, and call it a "D" drink, and sell it to people, there is no way that fellow editors here would allow to mention the side effects of the poison ingredient "X", in an article about "D".

Why? Because the sources about "D" will not list the side effects of "X", as they would probably be PR for "D", and the sources for "X" will not mention "D", because what do scientists, who study the side effects of a poison "X", care about the drink "D" or "Z" that "X" will be put into.

Due to that there are two problems:

First according to the WP:NOR it is not allowed to use the scientist's source because it don't mention "D". Although, I think, that "X" is directly related to "D", as "D" contain "X", other editors' practice is to mandate explicit mentioning of "D" in the scientist article about the side effects of "X", and that is not going to happen, that is not how scientists work. They find a rule ("X" cause a side effect), they don't retest and make papers about every conceivable application of the rule, like when "X" is mixed in a "D" drink.
The second problem, is that according to the WP:SYNTH, if one say "D" contain "X" and "X" has a side effect thus "D" has a side effect1, then it is synthesis. (From [(drinking "D") -> (drinking "X")] and [(drinking "X") ->(suffering a side effect)] it follows that [(drinking "D") ->(suffering a side effect)])1. Again, I don't think that such a simple application of logic A->B, and B->C therefor A->C should be considered a synthesis, but other editors seem to be sure that it is.

And there you go, the drink "D" is on the street, and if a kid would open Wikipedia to learn about that drink, he will not learn of the side effects of "D" at Wikipedia, and drink the drink in ignorance.

I think that this is awful, and that something should be changed, so that editors will understand that a source can be related to the topic of the article, even if it doesn't mention the topic, but does mention some relevant ingredient of the topic, and that simple logic, that any educated person can verify, is allowed.

[1] labeled comments were added at --Nenpog (talk) 06:26, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

--Nenpog (talk) 20:04, 7 July 2012 (UTC)

Your argument is completely unpersuasive. I happen to be sitting in a restaurant where they are serving a drink that pretty well matches your description. The dangerous chemical in question is, as measured by LD50, 36 times more deadly than pure grain alcohol. The beverage? Tea. The chemical? Caffeine. Nowhere does Wikipedia mention the lethal dose of caffeine in the article Tea.
But as I expected, in the discussion it emerges that actually you are about to be banned for similarly illogical ranting on a completely unrelated topic.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:49, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
About the tea, according to this site the following Statement is true: "a 70[Kg] human would die from drinking tea (due to the caffeine ingredient), after drinking 56[Liters] (or 225 cups) in a short enough period of time". That is a lot of tea!
It is not likely that anyone intend to drink that much, at a short enough period of time, that this side effect would be expressed. Thus, it may be true that this Statement have low relevance in an article about tea, and thus may be rejected on grounds of relevancy.
However, the Statement is not incorrect, nor is it a scientific discovery. I doubt that any scientist would be called original for making that Statement in any publication, because anyone can arrive with that Statement from sources that include the LD50 for caffeine, and the concentration of caffeine in tea, and anyone can verify that Statement from such sources. Thus that Statement should not be rejected on grounds of being an original research or not sourced.
Please consider also, that it is very easy to make a new drink with enough caffeine, so that death could occur after just 5 cups, and at that case a death side effect statement for that drink would be relevant, however, such statement would still be rejected due to current understanding regarding the WP:NOR.
At some period of time, the new drink would be so new that no research about it would exist. Even after some time I doubt that any scientist would want to make a research about that new drink, just in order to verify the LD50 data of caffeine for that drink. Perhaps a research about that new drink would exist after someone would die from it, but that wouldn't satisfy the WP:MEDRS requirement for a review article, and for that enough people need to die so that there would be enough material for a review study, rather than a case report.
Please consider also, that the side effects may be less horrible or obvious to recognize/diagnose than death, and that the same problem can exist in various other cases, the poisoned drink is just an example.
Please consider also, that people who read a detailed article in Wikipedia would not suspect that the inexistence of a side effect at the Wikipedia article is due to some bureaucratic rule such as WP:NOR. Due to the detail they would think that every relevant side effect is listed, and they may get hurt because of that.
* few changes at --Nenpog (talk) 23:04, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
--Nenpog (talk) 21:10, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
If you can figure out for yourself why polishing up your contribution with those few changes is counterproductive in the context of people being fed up with your pushing your agenda and AndyTheGrump's referral of you to AN/I you will learn something useful. Dmcq (talk) 23:53, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
Given the monumental lack of clue displayed by Nenpog in making the above post after everyone has told him/her to drop the stick, stop wasting our time, and piss off to some other forum where such soapboxing garbage is tolerated, it seems to me that a request for a permanent block per WP:COMPETENCE is a formality: does anyone else want to do the honours, or shall I? AndyTheGrump (talk) 21:52, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
The editor never seems to get any attempt by other editors at explaining things. It's either a large case of incompetence or a major case of IDHT. The editor is completely unwilling to admit that they are wrong on any issue, on their reading of policy and guidelines etc. IRWolfie- (talk) 22:14, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
Time to put and end to this I think: see Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents#User:Nenpog. AndyTheGrump (talk) 22:48, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
Jimbo Wales, the same people who wrote off topic comments here, and cluttered the discussion, are now pushing for a permanent site ban against me. I think that I have raised here an important point, that should be considered. I guess that these people object to that point that I am attempting to convey, but instead of arguing logical reasons against it, they choose to clutter the discussion with off topic comments, and to silence me with a permanent site ban. This kind of conduct is appropriate to the dark ages, dark regimes, and other dark stuff. I am new here and I have been interacting with other editors on Wikipedia for only a month, still learning, and I hope that I will learn that Wikipedia is not a dark something, where intellectual discussions are prohibited or discouraged, and that that dark bunch is just the exception to the rule. --Nenpog (talk) 03:05, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Humm, this doesn't look good. Now I am topic banned indefinitely from posting anywhere on Wikipedia material of a completely unrelated topic, because I talked here about problems in WP:NOR, and some people didn't like it. It is unfair that an unrelated discussion was used as an excuse to open an assault on me. I think that the decision is completely unjustified, and that people didn't review the evidences, because the evidences don't support their statements. People just followed the lead of one editor who wikihounded me, without checking the evidences. --Nenpog (talk) 18:25, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Hmm, that doesn't look good. You don't even get why you are topic banned. Put simply, it is because everyone is tired of your wasting their time, while it is clear that nothing less than this will make you stop. Here on Wikipedia, if you don't win a discussion, then you stop discussing and go find something more productive to do. But you don't, you just go on and on and on and on.  --Lambiam 19:08, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm struggling to find a way to address Nenpog's behavior short of an indefinite block, but I'm not encouraged. This needs to stop, one way or another. It's exhausting and unfair to the constructive editors of this site. I've broadened Nenpog's topic ban, but the bottom line is that one way or another he needs to drop this, now. It's already been allowed to go on way too long. MastCell Talk 19:28, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Great Job Opportunity for Jimbo at Elance!

Hi Jimbo,

Apologies if you've seen this before, but this Elance ad is looking for a Wikipedia Admin or 'Crat who can publish the Wikipedia articles their clients have written "without having them deleted a few weeks later." I figure why settle for a 'Crat, when you can hire Jimbo himself?! After all, he runs this place, doesn't he?

But seriously, if "Swift11" got a quick note (or a visit - he appears to be in London) from you explaining how things work around here, it might (or might not) convince him to change his ways. Cheers, Ebikeguy (talk) 23:57, 7 July 2012 (UTC)

The discussion on this is herePharaoh of the Wizards (talk) 01:49, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
They've got a whole list of Wikipedia-related ads, mostly PE/PEW. benzband (talk) 08:55, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
These pages link to Elance.
Wavelength (talk) 12:34, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
Related discussion at WP:AN/I, see Wikipedia:Administrators'_noticeboard/Incidents#Paid_advocacy. Albacore (talk) 21:51, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
If their clients don't want their articles deleted a few weeks later then JW is hardly their man. Just consider his article Mzoli's Meat. It got deleted after just 22 minutes. --Aspro (talk) 22:06, 8 July 2012 (UTC)
And yet, Mzoli's it lives. Please don't mislead people. --Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:52, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
I meant it along the lines that: It is not any individual editor but the WP community as a whole that decides whether an article is WP encyclopedic or not. Thinking, that mot people here knew the history of Mzoli's Meat, they would twig, what I was getting at - so didn’t even see the sense to link to any news articles about it , as the debate is now history, which those here (?) know about. Yes, Mzoli's lives. Obviously, I could have phrased it better but I wanted to point out that 'no' editor (paid-for or otherwise) can guarantee that s/he wont have their article deleted. Mzoli's Meat seemed (at the time of my posting) to be a very good example to address the OP's post... That: It is not the status of the editor but the quality and value of what s/he contributes that perseveres and survives... and the original stub by this article's creator was not very WP encyclopedic - if you take my drift  :¬) I am very much an inclusionist by nature and so get frustrated by much fuller stubs getting deleted by small clicky groups of North American editors working together. So maybe, my frustration over this matter was leaking out also. North American small business, have no trouble surviving on WP but other English speaking countries find their equally notable national favourites have disappeared the next time one Googles them. The Wikipedia:Systemic bias essay might as well be written in hieroglyphics. Please don't think I am ranting at you personally, I just want to point out things to the WP contributors (you and interested others) that can we can work on and improve. --Aspro (talk) 21:18, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

English Wikipedia Arbcom attempting to extend its authority to Wikimedia Commons?

Jimbo, as a cross-project issue I think this is something you need to be aware of: in a current arbitation case, the English Wikipedia's Arbcom is attempting to pass a remedy to the effect that Wikimedia Commons should conduct a review of a prolific contributor to that project. (See [24].) This strikes me as a remarkable attempt to extend the Arbcom's authority (the less kind might say a power grab).

Wikipedia:Arbitration states explicitly, in the first paragraph, "This Arbitration Committee's jurisdiction extends only to the English Wikipedia". As far as I know (and I've been involved with arbitration cases for eight years now), Arbcom has never previously attempted to direct any actions on any Wikimedia projects outside the English Wikipedia. I very much doubt whether the arbitrators have fully thought through the consequences of a governing body on one project attempting to direct the governance of another project. It raises a nasty prospect of cross-project clashes over who exercises authority. I think some input from you would be helpful on this issue. Prioryman (talk) 19:54, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Perhaps I'm out of line here, but I don't see how "suggesting" that Commons conduct an action constitutes a power grab. They're not ordering Commons to do anything. They're just recommending a review of the uploaded images by a user, because they recognize that images on Commons is outside of the jurisdiction of the English Wikipedia. Commons can completely ignore that suggestion if they wanted to. elektrikSHOOS (talk) 20:04, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
Two points: Arbcom has up to now tended to stay away from matters of governance on other projects, so why the change?; and if it's proposing a remedy it can't enforce, what does it expect to do if Commons turns it down? Prioryman (talk) 20:17, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
It sounds like you're still having problems understanding what a 'suggestion' or a 'recommendation' is. There's nothing to 'enforce'. In other words, in the short term, I'm sure what they expect to do is 'absolutely nothing' no matter what commons does! This isn't like the old days where colonial powers appointed "advisors" to "advise" governments of places they hadn't yet colonised or even nowadays in some places where the police or government will strongly "advise" someone to do something. Nil Einne (talk) 07:23, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
EN's "top court" made a recommendation to another ... what's the big deal? They damned well better look out for the interests of EN like that (✉→BWilkins←✎) 20:08, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Nonsense and balderdash, Priory. A "suggestion" is just that: a suggestion. It is not a power grab. --Orange Mike | Talk 20:48, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Although I don't have a problem with Arbcom "Suggesting" to commons that someone reviews the identified users contributions I would also caution that Arbcom shouldn't be using this as a means to expand thier scope and powers beyong EN:WP. I am going to get beat up on WP:AGF here but I have found several of Arbcoms decisions over the last few months questionable and in many cases not in the best interests of the project IMO so I find it myself very hesitent at this being a simple suggestion. It feels to me like Arbcom is going on a fishing expedition to show that there is no cross project Arbcom type function to which I could easily see them stepping up to volunteer to head. It just feels like a very slippery slope. Kumioko (talk) 20:57, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
Commons would be a lot better off placed under the jurisdiction of our ArbCom, but that isn't going to happen. What would be best would be for Commons to get their house in order themselves. I hope people are willing to help them with that. There are good people at commons who are trying.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 01:50, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
I appreciate the vote of confidence, but I'm sure I speak for my peers on the committee when I say "we didn't sign up for that!". A motion to advise another project of a formal finding is a public record of that advice, nothing more. My observation is that has a much more mature governance model, and I'm somewhat glad I don't have the administrator privileges over there that I asked for after my election a year and a half ago: I'm not personally responsible for Commons at any level, and that is just fine by me. Jclemens (talk) 00:50, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
I just have to note (without comment as to the specific case, 'cause I don't know that any copyright issues exist) that I've personally been involved in a number of cross-project copyright investigations that have launched after issues were discovered on Wikipedia where content wound up being reviewed and removed at Commons. We've got one actively under investigation at CCI right now. Fortunately, we're not a segregated community. Some of us cross the borders comfortably. :) And Commons admins, quite sensibly, respond to material that is found to violate copyright policies just as we do, by removing it. --Moonriddengirl (talk) 16:14, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

It would be more effective for ArbCom to make some suggestions to the Admins of Wikipedia Review. Count Iblis (talk) 20:51, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Are they our peers? Jclemens (talk) 00:50, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Credo Reference Survey (your opinion requested)

Credo Reference, who generously donated 400 free Credo 250 research accounts to Wikipedia editors over the past two years, has offered to expand the program to include 100 additional reference resources. Credo wants Wikipedia editors to select which resources they want most. So, we put together a quick survey to do that:

At this time only the initial 400 editors have accounts, but even if you do not have an account, you still might want to weigh in on which resources would be most valuable for the community (for example, through WikiProject Resource Exchange). If you have any questions, you can leave me a note on my talk page or email me at Cheers! Ocaasi t | c 20:33, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

  1. ^ "Manhattan Federal Court Orders Seizures of Seven Websites for Criminal Copyright Infringement in Connection with Distribution of Pirated Movies Over the Internet" (PDF). Press Release United States Attorney Southern District of New York. US Justice Department. 10 June 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2011.