User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 110

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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)
  • Large swings in page-load times: Because articles are reformatted by various among the (400?) file servers, depending on availability, the time needed to load an article page can vary widely from minute-to-minute, not just for "very busy" times of the day. For example, one slow article, using dozens of large templates, took 12 seconds to reformat during an edit-preview, then within 1 minute, the repeated edit-preview (no changes) ran 20 seconds of server time, followed within the minute by a repeated edit-preview of 13 seconds. The time variation, slowed in the 2nd preview to 67% longer, was an unusually long delay, beyond the more-typical delays of 10-40% for busy servers. That example indicates how a very-slow response can occur between 2 rapid responses, as showing a large swing in page-load times. For that reason, timings should be compared over numerous runs, selecting the minimum times to represent the underlying page-load time, as the typical technique when wp:Benchmarking any article performance issues. -Wikid77 19:41, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
It's been shifted to Wikipedia:Village pump (technical)#Wikid77 and new 'fast' citation templates. Br'er Rabbit (talk) 10:43, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Performance improvements have ceased now: All quick speed improvements, for major articles to load 5-25 seconds faster, have been reverted, per WP:BRD, and now the issues have re-entered the long discussion phase of the past 4 years. Splitting thread to "#Major articles were 3x faster but reverted". -Wikid77 (talk) 16:50, 11 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)
Lede as overview article would be too large: The problem with treating the lede section as a "Micropedia article" is that it would become too large, and obviously redundant to the remainder of the article. Instead, a separate "overview article" would be mid-size: as larger than a summarized lede, but smaller than the "(full)" version article. Perhaps use factors of 4x: the lede would be 16x smaller than the "(full)" text, while the overview article would be 4x larger than the lede, yet 4x smaller than the full article. So a lede of 4 paragraphs could be followed by an average of 64 paragraphs, whereas the overview article would contain about 16 paragraphs or such. -Wikid77 (talk) 16:23, 11 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)
Some articles warn to keep smaller: I just noticed that article "Canada" has an edit-notice to keep the page contents small, and consider expanding the sub-articles instead. -Wikid77 19:41, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

A True Travesty

This is outrageous, really. Yes, there are horrible things happening all over Wikipedia, but this is one of the "duh" moments that should never have been closed by Supervote. What really is the 'pedia coming to? Time to stop using words such as "transportation", "status quo" it seems ... (✉→BWilkins←✎) 20:01, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

  • I'm probably going to ask for some third party administrative help here, since the back-and-forth over the title and the lead has spilled over into the name section of the article, which really is talking about the name Côte d'Ivoire as used by French-speaking merchants in the 15th and later centuries (I should know. I wrote the section.), and it has already had to be be reverted to prose that's actually correct twice. Uncle G (talk) 22:22, 9 July 2012 (UTC)
  • It's a very good solid close, using rational argument, and coming to the correct editorial conclusion.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 01:52, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

I was surprised by this, though I didn't get involved. It seems to me that if the arguments haven't changed then the consensus cannot have changed since consensus is based upon arguments. So if there was no consensus before, then there should have been no consensus now. There are good points on both sides, but ultimately this came down to what convinced the closing admin. Now obviously this is how it works, but consider that the same exact arguments failed to convince the previous closing admins. I count 3 or 4 failed requested moves in the past (there may be more or less, I'm just shallowly searching), which means that if we consider the opinions of all closing admins we have a 3-4 vs. 1 ratio. If this were a 3 admin close this would have been a failed proposal. Sædontalk 02:18, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

And yet, it's the right decision. See: WP:BOLD. It's time we got back to improving Wikipedia instead of letting wikilawyers generate pseudo-non-consensus on such things. A lack of consensus in the past does not set precedent for the future.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 02:45, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Maybe, I don't feel strongly one way or the other and probably don't know enough to comment. Unfortunately our species is well known for creating rules and then arguing about those rules and then arguing about arguing about those rules, ad infinitum. WP, as amazing as it is, is much better suited for bugs than it is humans :). Sædontalk 02:54, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Fully agree with Jimmy. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 09:58, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Never got involved, never really saw what the fuss was. This is the English Wikipedia, "Ivory Coast" is the name of the country, in English. A --> B. Tarc (talk) 02:59, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
You'll be providing the popcorn, yes? I'm broke at the moment and this is about to turn into talk.Ivory Coast. Sædontalk 03:04, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Here it comes "split usage in English sources defaults to offical name" as per naming conventions. The problems with Jimbo's approach is that a few people now have the power to make lasting content decisions based on the fact that they were faster on the close of a RM. Since it is the same clique that dominate WP:MR that supervote will be endorsed. That gets us to the unwanted point where admins are actually content arbitrators. Do we really want that? Agathoclea (talk) 09:10, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
The principle sounds good, as "defaults to offical name" for split usage, but the long-term higher usage as "Ivory Coast" has greater weight, as with "Virginia" being the article name for the official Commonwealth of Virginia. -Wikid77 (talk) 19:44, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

I don't agree with this decision. It could be that the right arguments were not put, but it looks like slavishly following a rule no matter what conclusion it leads to. If someone had proposed moving The Netherlands to Holland, no-one would have gone to the trouble of surveying sources. But we're not able to transfer that type of common sense to a context outside the G20. Formerip (talk) 09:47, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Indeed. Given that Côte d’Ivoire is the official name in English, this seems rather a strange move (just like we use Germany, France, Netherlands, etc.) to make. Inaccuracy for the sake of (wierdly) Anglicising a name is stupid. (e.g. we use croissant not "crescent" and Déjà vu not "already seen"). --Errant (chat!) 09:56, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
While this is not the place to rehash tired arguments, I just wanted to point out that this is a poor analogy. "Croissant" and "Deja vu" are both the most common term in English, and are therefore English. This is not just "weirdly" Anglicizing a name: it is following the vastly dominant reliable sources. What would be weird would be to use a name that most English speakers don't know and can't spell, for the sake of some pseudo-academic reasons.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:07, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Côte d'Ivoire is certainly widely used where I come from. It's just a hangover from colonialism that means "Ivory Coast" hangs around. I mean; you're quite happy using "non-English" words for almost every other country; just because this one has diacritics? Just because the uneducated can't handle a few dashes doesn't mean we should spread ignorance. --Errant (chat!) 08:27, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
What is English is determined by usage. So, Cote d'Ivoire, since it is used by hundreds of different organizations and news outlets, is thus also English - any claims (such as those made in the RM) that Cote d'Ivoire is not English misunderstand how language works and evolves (for the same reason, we consider Sierra Leone and Costa Rica to be English terms). In this case, depending on sources you choose, one or the other has *more* usage, but one cannot say that Cote d'Ivoire is not a reasonable and frequently used english term for the country. I don't agree on the vastly dominant above, but I won't pursue that argument here.--KarlB (talk) 21:13, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
"Côte d'Ivoire" is not an English word. This is so plainly common-sense that I find it amusing that people are even attempting to argue against it. Tarc (talk) 21:22, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
What's your definition of an "English word"? Mine is that it's listed in respected English language dictionaries and encyclopedias. American Heritage, Oxford, Cambridge, Collins, Britannica, Columbia and Encarta all use "Côte d'Ivoire" over "Ivory Coast". By some measures it's used more frequently in English language sources. How can it not be an English word? TDL (talk) 21:39, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
I find it amusing that Tarc doesn't understand what english word means. But to answer the question, another way you can tell, besides the rather overwhelming set of dictionary entries above, is the many recorded sounds and pronunciation guides for Cote d'Ivoire (in English) which have nothing to do with the way french people pronounce it. So (1) in (multiple) dictionaries (2) used by multiple english news sources and (3) has an established pronunciation which is different than the way it would be pronounced in French - to me this has all the hallmarks of a foreign import which has established itself within the English language. Here are some others for your perusal, from China: List_of_English_words_of_Chinese_origin--KarlB (talk) 21:49, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
I've got quite a better handle on the language than you do, apparently, seeing how I'm not suffering a delusion that a French term is an English term. This is why this project needs a healthy dose of common sense at times, so we can do the right thing without a lot of hand-waving. This is no different then the diacritic edit wars or yogurt-yoghurt debacle. "Ivory Coast" == English. If that isn't to someone's liking, then they are free to relocate to another language Wiki. Tarc (talk) 23:33, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Well, I don't know how to argue with that sort of chauvinism, so I'm not likely to continue this discussion. Of course "ivory coast" is english, but so is "cote d'ivoire" (and "costa rica" and "sierra leone" and "los angeles" and all sorts of other words we borrowed from other languages.) Ever heard of a guru? The english hadn't, until somewhere around the 16th century, but now that word is as English as fish n chips! Again, I suggest you do some reading on how language evolves. English is as english does.--KarlB (talk) 00:27, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Is "Transport" an English word? No. Is Status quo an English word? No. Is Naive an English word? No. Is Netherlands an English word? No. Indeed, even Jesus is an acceptable (according to the English Wikipedia) transliteration. Cote d'Ivoire is similarly an acceptable transliteration of the Côte d'Ivoire ... so perhaps we should have simply removed the diacritics? "Ivory Coast" is a region that includes portions of the country now known as Côte d'Ivoire ... but is not the name of the country itself (✉→BWilkins←✎) 23:44, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Renamed per wp:COMMONNAME: It is a clear case of wp:COMMONNAME, in a long-term view. As a comparison, it really is "Republic of Texas" under common article name "Texas" although legal analysts might argue that Texas could never defend its republic status after the Civil War. However, the principle seems correct, in part to use the "offical name" for split usage, but the long-term higher usage as "Ivory Coast" has greater weight, as with "Massachusetts" being the article name for the official Commonwealth of Massachusetts. -Wikid77 (talk) 19:44, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Note: This is now at Move review. Input welcome: Wikipedia:Move_review/Log/2012_July_10#Ivory_Coast. --KarlB (talk) 19:26, 10 July 2012 (UTC)

Well i am very glad to see Jimbo's comments on this, quite the opposite of the mess happening at the review right now.

If President Obama tomorrow issued a presidential decree stating that hence forth the USA is to be known as the "United States of America" in ALL languages what do people think would happen? Somehow i doubt all foreign language media would change their reporting, and i doubt the foreign language wikipedias would change their titles either. This RM close finally looked like it had resolved a matter that has been outstanding for years and corrected the obvious (that Ivory Coast is the commonname of this country in the English language), yet now this "review" is about to overturn it, with some people voting claiming the closing admin did something they have categorically denied. A wikipedia wide discussion on if it should be Ivory coast or the French language name for all articles and content would be helpful. BritishWatcher (talk) 00:34, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

On the other hand, if Wikipedia applies the logic of arguments put in the RM discussion, we would be obliged to rename our article United States as America, which is far and away the common name in newspapers. Formerip (talk) 12:12, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Yet it is at the United States... not United States of America, the full official name which sort of reinforces the point that commonname is used over official names. If the sources show that America is by far the primary used commonname of the country rather than US id back a change. BritishWatcher (talk) 19:10, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
"United States" is the full official name, as you can see here and here and here. Formerip (talk) 23:40, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Well i suggest you go and correct the wikipedia article which specifically states it is the United States of America and ironically join in with a debate taking place on the talk page there on this very subject with someone asking for the article to be moved to its official country name in recent days. (something i did not know was underway when i first mentioned it above). BritishWatcher (talk) 23:45, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
As long as it doesn't force another full-scale Macedonia problem. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 01:46, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
This really is Wikipedia at its worst. When the UN refers to this country by its native name whilst Wikipedia doesn't, you know there's a problem. doktorb wordsdeeds 08:44, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
The UN also puts countries like Libya and China on its Human Rights Commission, while Syria is up for election to it this year and likely to win a seat given the way the vote is typically rigged. I'm finding it hard to care what the UN thinks on pretty much any matter, really. Resolute 13:46, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Problems that we *don't* have...

See the thing is, I think that now and again, we as a community tend to focus too much on the problems we have etc. etc., but I think instead of only thinking about the small, arguably trivial (*cough cough Ivory Coast cough cough celebrity Twitter articles cough cough* :P) things that tend to eat up our time and drive us insane, why not list some of the problems that we have never had to deal with, or that we have effectively eradicated at the moment. (or at least are heavily working on). I say we take a second out of our often stressful and heated wiki-lives and focus on the good in our wiki-experience. Spread the Wikilove!! :)

  1. One that immediately springs to mind is that we rarely have problems with links being cleverly and subtlety vandalised so they don't link where they're supposed to. I'm guessing this is because many vandals are newbies who don't understand how our [[ ____ | ____ ]] system works. If Barack Obama has been changed to Stinkface Obama, its pretty obvious... but I don't think we usually get things like: Barack Obama, although if we did, that'd get reverted reeeeally quickly anyways... (we're just awesome like that!! :D)
  2. We've recently been extensively and actively been working on our natural bias towards Westernized culture by pushing various Wikiprojects on stuff like African culture, and Eastern European cities/villages etc. That's good, right?

Anything else? :D--Coin945 (talk) 16:47, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

There are a lot of people actively trying to address our content biases created as a result of our demographic base... but it still represents a very, very significant problem for the encyclopedia. But, so as to not be entirely a downer, here's one: we no longer have to fight for credibility. I forget who said it offhand, but to paraphrase someone, 'Making fun of Wikipedia is so 2007.' When doing education outreach, more often than not, we don't have to convince professors or universities of the value of Wikipedia - they see it for themselves without prompting. Kevin Gorman (talk) 16:53, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Point number one is a little beansey if you ask me.--Cube lurker (talk) 17:02, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Yeah.. that did cross my mind.....I best strike it out.... :D end on a deterring note.
So in the title '...' = 'yet' ? :) Dmcq (talk) 17:42, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
.... ....... ........... touché... :D --Coin945 (talk) 17:48, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

I'd say vandalism is general is not a major problem anymore. Yeah obviously it still exists, but it was only a few years ago that it was much worse, before we had the edit filter and huggle and all these fantastic tools and abilities vandals were able to be significantly more disruptive. Now it's been years since I've had go through the tedious multi-step process of reverting a dozen vandal page moves--Jac16888 Talk 18:54, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Technical issues

Could somebody please tell me who is responsible for the design of the wikipedia website and who designed the skins and made the changes with the vector skin?♦ Dr. Blofeld 16:59, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

That seems a bit Wikipedia:Village pump (technical)-y to me personally. I'm not sure this is Jimbo's expertise...--Coin945 (talk) 17:20, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Or Wikipedia:Vector. The design of the website is a community process for which tens if not hundreds of thousands are responsible in part. (talk) 17:23, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

ACTA and Canada

It would seem that the recent vote against ACTA legislation in the EP is not the end of it. See: Jcwf (talk) 00:52, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

Very happy to meet you tonight!

Shujenchang and Jimmy Wales.JPG

I'm honor to meet you at Google Reception tonight. Expect to see you at conference tomorrow morning! --Shujen Chang (talk) 01:42, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

Reference desk

I wonder if you would take a moment to turn your dreamy Kevin Costner eyes to this thread about the reference desk. Ditch 02:55, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

News hour

I just watched your interview on the PBS News Hour today. I thought you represented us well and made a number of good points; I had the impression though that even after all this time you aren't entirely comfortable with the interview process. Regards, Looie496 (talk) 02:20, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Looked good to me, but Jimmy said people might like to visit the discussion page, when newspeak is now talk page (the tab at the top of an article shows "talk" rather than "discussion"). Johnuniq (talk) 08:47, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Amusing. It was originally the 'talk' page and it took me a long time to transition. :-) Now I have to go back!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:18, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Just want to add that Jimbo, I love your comments on making the editing space much more Microsoft-Wordy. Would make my (how selfish of me...... our!!) lives a hell-of-a-lot easier... at least, the non tech-geek males among us. :P--Coin945 (talk) 14:38, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
I prefer the current LaTeX style approach, rather than trying to make it too much like Microsoft Word. IRWolfie- (talk) 15:08, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
We should preserve wikitext for whoever wants it - but it is worth noting that the current approach is a nightmare for new users and people who are not technical. LaTeX is really really a bad model for allowing people to edit without requiring a huge learning curve of technical stuff.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:33, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
I agree. In my personal experience, that's been one of the major factors deterring people I know from getting stuck in. One look at the editing screen and it's like they've seen a ghost... ! :)--Coin945 (talk) 15:41, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
I had never seen Jimbo live and this interview was the first time I saw him talking. I have to admit that from his pictures I had this image of him as a tough guy but I was surprised to see that he is unassuming and soft-spoken and he looked and spoke like someone in charge of an encyclopedia. In that regard I think he did a great job representing the community. The glasses too gave him an unmistakably intellectual appearance. :) Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 14:59, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Hmmmmm tgat seems a bit on the negative side of constructive criticism.... :D--Coin945 (talk) 15:41, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

That was excellent. Well done and thanks. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 15:56, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Anyone know if the interview is viewable online anywhere? Deli nk (talk) 16:33, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

You can view it at Looie496 (talk) 17:04, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
It's also on YouTube. Type in Jimmy Wales and PBS.--Coin945 (talk) 17:13, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Thanks Looie and Coin. I got a kick out of the PBS transcript that says "U.S. beef standard" when Jimmy said "USB standard". Not enough tech geek males at PBS! Deli nk (talk) 11:52, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
You're very welcome. :D Funnily enough, that's exactly what I heard!! You should've seen the confusion on my face when I was unable to find this brilliant article on the "U.S. beef standard" that Jimbo was rambling on about.... :P--Coin945 (talk) 16:18, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

I would not do away with laTeX. One can always add more MS-Word like "What you see is what you get"-editing options. For the occasional equation some newby wants to edit in that is then an improvement (and good enough). But if you want to do a lot of editing of mathematical text, then any higher level MS-Word like system is going to be a pain in the ass. Also, people who do a lot of mathematical editing are typically familiar with laTeX, anyway. Count Iblis (talk) 18:31, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

...sleepy in DC...

Jimbo, I'm about to hear your remarks here at the Lisner Center but I'm very sleepy because I have nine roommates at the hostel, and I'm too old and grumpy for that kind of lifestyle. Can you wave the magic Wikimedia credit card and put me up somewhere else? Don't worry about champagne and chocolates, I can do without that. Also, it's a bit warm in DC--can you fix that? Drmies (talk) 14:13, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

  • This should fix the problem. —Tom Morris (talk) 18:31, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
    • Why not beer? Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 18:32, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
      • Well, if you are very sleepy, caffine. To become very sleepy, beer. —Tom Morris (talk) 18:34, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
        • No beer in the hostel, Tom...shame, since the grocery store sells big bottles of Duvel and Chimay. But I'm expecting a call from Jimbo, inviting me to the penthouse for a cocktail party. Also, someone at the Foundation was supposed to make dinner and opera reservations for me and Sue Gardner. Drmies (talk) 21:03, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
  • I've given Drmies the actual fix to xyr problem at User talk:Drmies#The Defend-O-Geek-2000 Urban Wikipedian Geek Protection Kit. Have you seen that talk page? Arranging blind dates with "messy blondes". Taking Coke with Tom Morris. The public is going to get quite the wrong idea about Wikimania — or perhaps Washington, D.C. — at this rate. Uncle G (talk) 21:30, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Sorry about the heat. That's due to an error on page A-30 here where the cost of 80% fossil fuel is shown to be less than double that of 10% fossil. Your tax dollars at work. (talk) 21:33, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

Help _me_ get justice

Dear Jimmy, I just got your message through Demand Progress, which is kind of ironic since I'm a longtime Wikimedian, sysop and OTRS volunteer. You might remember that a user from had a "slight accident" some years ago when she was sued for 20 million euros. I am truly sorry that I can not recall any petition from you or WMF to those who initiated the lawsuit, to judges or just any big, recent attempt to sensitize public awareness of the matter and show support. And she truly is innocent. Should you bump into her @ Wikimania, she can confirm the case is still going on. Don't get me wrong if I tell you that the British guy, in the end, at least knew what he was doing and facing. Also, I'm sure that you remember that deleting contents because of copyvios, real ones or just alleged ones, is actually what every conscientious sysop does on WMF projects because this is how we deal with contents, we only want the free ones... While, again, I haven't still read any comments from you about likely deletions on the Russian Wikipedia because of a new law that sounds pretty much like censorship from the government. I am just too glad that you are using your image to influence the most important people in the world: I just wanted to make sure you don't forget to use that power also to help us, your community. --Elitre (talk) 21:55, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

I was also very much surprised and pleased to see Jimmy Wales working with Demand Progress, a group which tends to be right a lot. I sure hope he can arrange help for Gianfranco. Wnt (talk) 19:11, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
(Gianfranco is just fine, have a better look at the article ;) --Elitre (talk) 16:46, 13 July 2012 (UTC))

Nature calls for a public-interest defence to libel in the UK

I think that this is one of those rare times when Wikipedia's interests align with those of commercial publishers. A much-needed UK libel reform that includes protections for statements made in the public interest - which I assume should include informative Wikipedia articles - would be good for everyone. Wnt (talk) 20:50, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

While I certainly agree that UK libel reform would be a good thing, I don't know enough about what is meant by a "public interest" defense to know whether or not I would support it. Perhaps to the surprise of some, I think that US libel laws are deficient in the other direction. As a public figure who has been the victim of vicious libel, I found upon consultation with lawyers that it would be virtually impossible to win a case in the US, despite being the victim of what any sane person would agree is libel. It's a very subtle issue to get right.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:13, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Some sources are [1] and [2], but I'll admit, I haven't managed to find actual proposed text; the complaint is that such a provision is absent from the current draft. Wnt (talk) 21:35, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Simon Singh deserves credit for this, see here. Count Iblis (talk) 16:32, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikimedia Chapters Association

I am concerned that this new organization has just decided to appoint User:Fæ as its chair. He, as you may know, is currently the subject of an ArbCom proceeding here where the Committee has already passed one sanction against him and is likely to rule that he has turned in his sysop tools under a cloud, along with passing numerous negative findings about his conduct. While the WCA is an independent group from the Foundation and the decision of chair was left to the chapter heads, it is also effectively going to be representing the Foundation's interests on an international level pursuant to its assigned function as an umbrella group and representative body of the chapters. This would seem to greatly increase the exposure of the Foundation and Wikipedia itself to consequences from this individual's conduct here, even if only from a public relations standpoint.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 21:14, 12 July 2012 (UTC)

Huh? Where did you see that (genuinely I can't see anything on that page...). (as a side note the proposed budget is ridiculous for an organisation that hasn't done anything yet - even the chapters are looking like BigCo nowadays :() --Errant (chat!) 22:23, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps the user is personable and well-thought of by colleagues. I can think of many reasons that user might be selected to chair something. I'm also aware that some people have stated they would like to undermine Wikipedia on a Wikipedia criticism forum. NewtonGeek (talk) 22:35, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Largely depends on what arbcom end up ruling. In any case Jimbo is very much the wrong person to appeal to. The Chapters Association is meant to be a balance to the WMF so they are unlikely to pay much attention to jimbo.©Geni 23:21, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
See hereGeni 23:21, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Bleh, just saw I didn't include the right link. Changed it to the right one.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 23:35, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
The fact remains that this is something jimbo can not reasonably be expected to influence.©Geni 00:44, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
I didn't hear of the WCA before today, but based on those minutes Geni posted, it sounds like he was elected, not appointed. Though actually, according to the draft Standing Orders [3] in force (?) at that time, the vote wasn't even necessary - as sole nominee he could simply take the position. According to the last section he could be removed at any time by majority vote, but since 14 of 16 just voted for him I doubt that will happen soon. Wnt (talk) 12:03, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Even if I do not share their opinion, as Newtongeek notes Fæ is well-thought of by his colleagues and deserves our congratulations. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 14:24, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
As someone watching the Arbcom case, I would like to commend you on your response here. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 19:09, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • I'm commenting only to note that nothing has passed until the case is closed. -- Lord Roem (talk) 15:11, 13 July 2012 (UTC) Other WikiNews...

There is a discussion of Sanskrit archived at Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Language/2009 February 5#relationship between sanskrit and hindi, and the first of its two subsections is Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Language/2009 February 5#Sanskrit is alive (not dead); Sanskrit is a living language. The subsection has a link to Sanskrit Wikipedia atमुखपृष्ठं.
Wavelength (talk) 17:08, 13 July 2012 (UTC) and 19:28, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

4 million articles

Hi, Jimbo and Jimbo page watchers. We reached 4 million articles. The 4 millionth article was Izbat Al Borg according to chat on IRC pending confirmation. Will there be an announcement by the foundation? --Meno25 (talk) 14:25, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

I think there will be!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:28, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Congrats Jimbo! :) ♛♚★Vaibhav Jain★♚♛ Talk Email 14:30, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Congrats are not due to me, but to all of us who have helped with this!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:36, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Yeah! :) ♛♚★Vaibhav Jain★♚♛ Talk Email 14:37, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

4 million articles and still a frightening amount missing! Yesterday I created our first entry for an archaeologist from Mali, Téréba Togola! ♦ Dr. Blofeld 15:18, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Username penalty only for some settings in Preferences

After discussions for 2 weeks, and people unsure about page-cacheing, I finally just tried resetting the Special:Preferences to the defaults, and my page-loads instantly became 30x faster, as if an IP user. Hence, by default, new username editors will view cached copies of articles, and only "veteran editors" who set special editing-options in Special:Preferences will risk triggering the 30x slower pageview interface, which I have suffered for years. Currently, the following are some safe options which allow cache-article viewing:

  • Default image-size as 220px, or 250px, still views 30x faster cache pages.
  • Prompt-for-blank-edit-summary (to prevent save) still views 30x faster cache pages.

I suspect that altering any edit-options which change the edit-tabs ("[edit]") will disable the cache-article viewing. Note how articles are sent by the servers: each initial view of an article still varies in display time, as servers copy either the cache-articles within a tenth to quarter-second (0.250s), or servers reformat the article for custom-styled options within 1 to 59 seconds (1.000-59.000s). The tests show that every time an article is originally viewed, a server either makes a quarter-second cache-article copy or reformats the whole page, depending on user-preference settings.

If any experienced editors think their viewing of articles is "dog slow" then consider running Special:Preferences/reset to clear all unusual preference settings, and enable quick viewing of cache-article copies. It is ironic that this problem mainly affects veteran editors who, months or years ago, selected "neat" special preferences to improve editing, and unknowingly caused their interface to run 20-50x times slower. Talk about a reason for veteran editors to think "Wikipedia has become worse" and to want to leave!

However, this problem is still tied to edit-preview delays, for both username and IP editors, where large articles with slow templates need several extra seconds (5-25) to reformat for each edit-preview. Meanwhile, I hope veteran editors learn to reset their Special:Preferences, if some edit-options have shutoff viewing of the 30x faster cache pages. -Wikid77 (talk) 19:44, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Connection Issues

All of a sudden this afternoon my mumble decided it wasn't going to let me join any channels anymore. I have been part of the EVE University channel and is the only one I use. I tried doing several things to get it to connect but when I go to log on it says connecting & the failed & repeats with same results over & over. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:28, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Please ask at Wikipedia:Reference desk/Computing with a link to the article "Mumble (software)" if that is what you mean by "mumble".
Wavelength (talk) 00:36, 14 July 2012 (UTC) and 00:40, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Lists of notable Ns

Mr. Wales, in English Wikipedia there are a lot of lists of notable/famous subjects. Usually these lists don’t contain word «famous/notable» in its names, but this is indicated in introductions (e. g., List of Asian Americans).

Some users in Russian Wikipedia suppose all such lists to be an immanent original research, because (as they think) notability is only a inner Wiki-concept; there is no one reliable source which contains lists, being based on the principle of notability; and lists of «famous N» in sources may contradict each other, because «famous» is not an exact term.

Other users (including myself) suppose, that Wiki-lists should not be based on original idea (any absurd principle of different subjects’ unification), but may have an original content, more vast, that any specific source.

Do you see any problem here? What is your view on the concept of Wiki-originality? Thanks. --Chronicler (talk) 18:21, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Major articles were 3x faster but reverted

The page-load performance improvements have ceased now, pending more discussion after the thread (earlier) "#Username penalty: IP users see articles 5x-50x faster". All quick speed improvements, for major articles to load 5-25 seconds faster, have been reverted, per WP:BRD, and now the issues have re-entered the long discussion phase from 2009, 4 years ago. Beyond Template talk:Citation/core, there is a spinoff discussion at WP:PUMPTECH:

Plus a wp:TfD (15July2012) to delete Template:Fcite to stop improvements:

I am not surprised that all improvements were reverted, by people claiming how a small bug was totally unacceptable until made perfect, or invoking WP:CITEVAR as if the same-style format of citations was not the same. However, I was pleased that the improvements were allowed to remain for about a week, and I was able to confirm the speed-improvements continued each day, for page-loads faster by 5-25 seconds, in a wide variety of the major articles ("Brazil", "Bulgaria", "Google", "India", "United States" and "Beyoncé Knowles" all had about 20-second faster page-load), plus some minor articles. During the prior 4-year discussion, there had been worries that improvements would not be significant if ever placed into "real" mainstream articles, so why bother to try to analyze-and-explain concepts which are pre-thought to fail anyway. Instead, per WP:BRD, I was able to prove that the techniques were extremely effective, as aimed toward blitz templates which run 900x-per-second. The Template:Fcite web (and related templates) ran at speeds of 116x-per-second, as 5-6x faster than the old Template:Cite web. I thank everyone who suggested better ideas, and Jimbo for allowing the discussion to progress here for 2 weeks. There is still (slight) hope to make major articles 3x faster in the coming month. -Wikid77 (talk) 17:19, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Now you know what it's like to herd those kittens that keep getting posted here. Keep trying. (talk) 17:25, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Take heart from this video. It's not impossible! Dmcq (talk) 17:51, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Just as a general comment about the speed of articles I have also noticed that the site in general gets progressively slower after every update. The site used to be very very fast and now, it takes seconds to minutes to load some pages. Kumioko (talk) 18:31, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

I'm sorry, but where do you take the "20-second faster page-load" numbers from? Any article you linked above loads for me in 1-2 seconds, which seems fast enough, I'd say. A 20 second improvement to that would be pretty miraculous. :) --Conti| 18:47, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Go to Brazil while logged in
  • Click on "Edit"
  • Then click on "Show preview"
  • Watch how it takes 20 seconds to show the preview of your edit.
--Enric Naval (talk) 21:59, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Ah, thank you! Even though I read through all this I never managed to figure out that this is an issue that only is about editing articles, not viewing them.. --Conti| 11:07, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Affects pageviews by logged-in users: The 3x speed difference is also for usernames which view those articles, but have special preferences, such as image-size set to "250px" or such, in Vector or Monobook skin. -Wikid77 (talk) 08:11, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Rather than militating on this high profile user talk page, acknowledgement of the better solution described at:

would be nice. This will all be addressed by mw:Extension:Scribunto implementation of citations. Br'er Rabbit (talk) 20:14, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikid77, you keep posting on this page about your own research, quoting your own statistics, suggesting your own solutions. And then, seemingly going off and implementing them - in the most recent case with disastrous results. Why not discuss for a while - there's no rush. But not here; J Wales is not some kind of fairy godmother who can make everything conform to your view. hmmmm ... or is he? maybe I should make a wish ... pablo 21:28, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
I very much welcome the research and statistics and proposed solutions.  :-) I also recommend implementation tests, though cautiously. I don't see any disastrous results here - no need to get too excited. Suboptimal results? Sure. But 'disastrous' is a pretty strong word.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:41, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Yes, as I understand the concerns, some other people starting using the fast-cite templates incorrectly, and that was a "disastrous result" to blame on me. As for the hideous "broken footnotes", the reality was the footnote links still worked (back to "[n]"), but clicking on author-name did not link to the book/journal name, due to a bug which omitted the internal span-id tag, <span id="CITEREFauthor2007">. Despite all the end-of-world screaming, I think the fix for the span-id tag took 20 minutes, in the midst of all the progress-shock, as people quickly reverted the articles to make Wikipedia safe, again, for 20-second reformat of major articles during edit-preview, rather than the dangerous, new 7-second edit-previews. -Wikid77 (talk) 06:44, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Quite disingenuous. The edit that outright broke India was yours, not some 'other people'. And you've not fixed it. (ever set |ref={{sfnRef}}?). All the senior technical people that have commented on this are talking other directions. You should address the technical criticisms on VPT rather than doing the appeal to Jimbo thing. Br'er Rabbit (talk) 07:06, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
  • I am sorry you got so upset. Look again at India&oldid=500994569 to note the "sfnRef" author/title-links have been correct. I have worked on numerous templates for years, so that is why I was able to activate the author-link anchors so quickly, as "CITEREFauthor2009" when you first noted the issue. As a senior technical person, myself, I would note that software developers often seek a future, new-gadget fix "next year" when an easier solution is already at hand within days. Jimbo has a long-standing manner of helping to avoid bottlenecks when improvements seem stalled. -Wikid77 (talk) 08:11, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Maybe too strong, luckily it wasn't implemented in many articles. But one user's perception is far too small a sample to conclude anything from; and a 'fix' that breaks a load of other stuff is somewhat of a chocolate teapot. pablo 21:55, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Jimmy, this broke every footnote in India, a featured article using robust referencing. It broke many in England, too, and at least a dozen other articles. It was sloppy, with broken template:Fcitation needed showing all over the place. 'disastrous' may be a tad strong, but 'disruptive' is exactly what this was. The statistics are off-the-cuff and empirical and miss the true issues that developers such as User:TheDJ have pointed out. Br'er Rabbit (talk) 23:29, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps this is best taken as an illustration of two software development principles:
  1. Don't run your tests on the production server. Copying a few high-profile articles into user sandboxes (with attribution, natch) seems as though it could have generated the same pageload data without the kerfuffle, and without other editors copying the markup into other articles by mistake.
  2. Know your requirements. The current citation templates aren't bloaty because someone woke up one morning and decided to create hecatoncheires; they're bloaty because people kept piling on little bits of functionality that was useful to them. It's not clear to me what the process was for deciding what would go into the fcite templates, but given that it blew up list-defined references, which are reasonably common, it could have used somewhat better vetting. Choess (talk) 03:09, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Please read article "Extreme Programming" - It is about making quick changes, with daily system-wide integration, in a rapidly changing environment. After endless slow-cite debates, during a 4-year period, how do you think I actually got several major articles to reformat 3x faster within 1 week? Be Bold WP:BRD. The reason we know the templates will deliver outstanding speed results is because the system integration testing, during July 4-9, gave live proof of 7-second edit-preview in many major articles, where formerly (and now), several articles took 25 seconds to display in edit-preview ("Egypt", "Bulgaria", "Canada", "Google", "Beyonce", "Brazil", "Miley Cyrus"). Now, rather than risk footnote-author links which might not work, we could simply extend the 4-year discussion of what-ifs for another year, or try a 7-level pre-approval process before articles are changed for live display. Sound familiar? Wikipedians are not so stuck, that "Israel" has to continue to reformat for 40.2 seconds (yes) during edit-preview. How do I know? Because I changed it, and it remained much faster for days, before being reverted. Fortunately, many other editors have seen the future, as well. -Wikid77 (talk) 06:44, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
You've also pissed me off, shown that you play fast and loose with Consensus, and made my list of people whose edits I attend to for good or bad reasons. CITEVAR is there for a reason, because changing the tools that content editors use underneath them shits them to tears. (Am I making this clear?). Guess what renders even faster than citation templates: plain text citations (or as I have now decided to call hand-rolled manual Turabian: Citation to the Maxx). Fifelfoo (talk) 07:29, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Join the club, Fifelfoo. You don't think I am disappointed as well? And consider what Jimbo must be thinking, to know many major articles in edit-preview have taken 26 seconds, or "40.2" seconds, to display text, for over 3 years, while we have "400 servers"? I would call that interface "WYSIWAIT". I wish I had more time to fix these problems, beyond being a part-time volunteer, but I think we are days away from an adequate fix. Of course, we could remove all templates, but I have shown how 250 citations can be formatted within 4 seconds (now 15 seconds). I have known for a long time that {Cite} was hideously slow, for years now, and as a computer scientist, I should have done more to solve this problem back in 2009, but I was too distracted. Fortunately, everyone is coming together to solve this pitiful problem, which is the consequence of ignoring performance issues too much, for too many years. -Wikid77 (talk) 15:45, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
You may have shown how 250 citations can be formatted wrongly within 4 seconds. I can play the Minute Waltz in 30 seconds, with a lot of wrong notes; saves my time and my audience's, but it isn't exactly an improvement in 'performance'. pablo 16:14, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Please forgive my cluelessness, but why can't we have these fcite templates for fast, simple citations and the slow old cite template, and use fcite only for the citations that it works on? This seems like it should be more a matter of documentation than anything else. (I'd say we could modify cite template with a parameter |fast=yes that switches you over to fcite, but I suppose that would slow it down... Besides, "fcite" is shorter than "cite|fast=yes". We could put up an editnotice asking users to consider fcite, but only on a few articles that actually take half a minute to preview.) Wnt (talk) 19:04, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Because they don't work, because they've been shot to bits on WP:VPT by developers who are in the process of re-implementing the standard templates to *be* faster (and probably otherwise improved), because these reduced functionality templates will invariably be misused by (sorry) the clueless. We don't need more varieties of cite templates, we need to be consolidating and improving and standardising on fewer of them. Br'er Rabbit (talk) 01:50, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Exactly a matter of documentation: Once again, great idea, Wnt. Doctext should emphasize {Fcite} and {Cite} can be used together. I was noticing the template doctext did not properly explain the close connection, and some TfD-gunshy users might have imagined, "Oh no, Fcite is a rival template" (not really), so once it conquers the world due to superior performance, then the {Cite} Empire will face deprecate-and-destroy, as with all troublesome templates. Instead, both should be kept, and I have noted that in rare cases, of limited rare parameters, people should use {Cite} or {Cite_journal} as being compatible format, but allowing up to 9 author surnames. It is exactly a matter of "documentation" to reassure people that template {Cite} can be used in some cases, and the major articles (nations, cities, celebrities, anatomy) will still redisplay nearly 3x faster for login users or edit-preview when using mostly Fcite. -Wikid77 (talk) 21:10, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
It is also a matter of testing and marketing, because your "go live" was a catastrophic public relations failure. Look at CITEVAR, get one horrifically rendering article onside, win consensus there, implement, showcase, repeat. If you want to do a whole bunch at once, win consensus for that. Otherwise, use the demonstrable success to recruit gnomes who will be happy to go forth and win consensus article by article. And remind them that this is about convincing existing CS1 users to switch to a faster render of CS1; not templating articles that use other coherent and consistent citation systems. Fifelfoo (talk) 01:01, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Misunderstood not catastrophic: The word is out that Wikipedia can be 3x faster, soon. It was a case of WP:BRD, waiting for a revert, and it happened. I would avoid concluding, "catastrophic public relations failure" because it just revealed the way some people think, with unfortunate misguided attitudes but not "catastrophic". Plus the damage done to revert all those major articles, as again 3x slower to reformat/preview, can be viewed positively as evidence in "40 cases" that removing Fcite clearly caused articles to again sink to a 3x-slow crawl during page-load. People cannot claim, "Lucky speed coincidence from other editing" or such, not with 40 articles. Also, as noted, some people began immediately using template Fcite, because it worked perfectly in other articles (not using {Harvnb} author/title-links). However, those happy people perhaps needed to know that 3x faster, and "perfect" format was not enough for some highly outspoken, particular people. I regret that some of the belated instant reverts also erased interim edits of other people, but I think the erased edits were redone. This situation is just a reminder that, rather than waiting a half-day to talk with an editor to address concerns, the use of revert-and-burn has become a mindless strategy to force articles with nonworking author-links to again become notably "3x slower" to display or edit, as a preference of some users. Does anyone really think that "Beyoncé" used Harvard referencing and needed to be reverted back to run 26 seconds? Rather than "catastrophic" I would think the reverts were impulsive and disruptive, when a template upgrade, within an hour, would have sufficed. Fortunately, some tangible issues were noted, and the Fcite templates are being upgraded to handle all known concerns. This is wp:BRD. -Wikid77 (talk) 08:11, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Option to hand-code citations for fast edit-preview: It is important to consider how bypassing all footnote templates can make an article run, perhaps, 3-4x times faster. Some major articles are structured with hand-coded references, and those articles edit-preview very quickly. However, a compromise solution can be found by using lite templates to format the most-common citations, as 5-6x faster than {Cite}, and still provide a consistent footnote style in articles. I think that the {Fcite} templates offer that type of compromise solution, so that large articles can still have controlled footnote formats, but also display very quickly during edit-preview. Yet, removing all footnote templates is an alternative in many large articles, to restore rapid editing of such articles. -Wikid77 (talk) 04:09, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Simplification by specific templates: Another approach, to improving template speed for formatting citations, is to restrict the numerous options allowed for {Cite_web} versus {Cite_book} and perhaps warn a user when trying to use options not really intended for a particular source type. However, several users have requested that many options be allowed, so that users will not have to struggle to understand which options are omitted from the Template:Fcite group. Unfortunately, there are numerous alias parameters which, when omitted, will double the speed of processing. For example, beyond the obvious name "last1=" or "last=" or "author=", there have also been "author1=" or "surname=" or "surname1" or even an attempted "inventor1-last", so the variety seems to encourage users to "imagine any possible name" which, of course, would not work because other parameter names are ignored in templates. Although the wide variety of alias names might have been a "selling point" to bolster use of Template:Citation, all those aliases require extra time to check, and I suspect the variety has encouraged people to imagine any name, similar in concept, would be handled because so many variations are "automatically understood" to be the same as surname1. I think, long-term, the odd-ball parameter names need to be bot-edited in "5,000 articles" to match a few aliases, and then simplify all templates to omit the unusual optional aliases. -Wikid77 (talk) 08:49, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

Office actions

Reading WP:OFFICE, it seems that the Foundation can do pretty much anything it wants. Do you think the Foundation should be required to explain an office action if someone contests the action? ChromaNebula (talk) 16:20, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

No, I don't. It's worth noting that it is almost always a very difficult legal or moral situation that requires the Foundation to take action, and getting into a discussion or debate about it publicly can often make things worse for the victim (there is usually a victim). When possible, yes, of course, it's better for the Foundation (for anyone, really) to explain things, but that's not always the case, nor should we insist upon it.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 16:33, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
With all civility still intended, can't illegal content be removed by ordinary editors through RevDel and/or oversight, or, if a complaint is made to the WMF, through their RevDel and/or oversight tools? If we have RevDel and oversight, why are office actions needed? ChromaNebula (talk) 16:41, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Oops. I didn't mean to make you mad. ChromaNebula (talk) 16:41, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
You didn't make me mad. Again, let me stress that this isn't just about "illegal content" in most cases. Editors do remove "illegal content" all the time. The Foundation always prefers to let volunteers handle things where it is possible. Let me turn around and ask you this: why do you distrust the office to do this correctly?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:03, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
I wasn't aware of the office making mistakes. It's not that I'm worried about them making mistakes; it's that I'm worried about them abusing their powers. If anyone else abused their tools, the community would make a big stink about it. But if someone at the office abused their tools (I don't expect anyone to because I assume good faith, but an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure), who could deal with the abuse? It hasn't happened yet and I don't really expect it to happen, but it could happen if we don't take steps to prevent it. (As for you, you founded Wikipedia, and you can listen to people where the office can't, so I trust you just as you trust us). By the way, thank you for listening instead of slamming me for having a not-so-good idea. ChromaNebula (talk) 16:56, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
It's me again. Here's a real-world analogy that I think is appropriate: Let's say office actions are a "For Emergencies Only" button under a password-protected panel. The panel won't open unless a password is typed in, and only the people at the office know the password (the reason that only the people at the office know the password is that the button can do practically anything). Now that's all and good if there's an emergency, but what if some unscrupulous person at the office uses his or her password to access the button and use it when it's not an emergency? (Again, they probably wouldn't, but better safe than sorry). Since the button is all-powerful and no one in the community can use it, use of the button in non-emergency situations would disrupt the balance of power (between you/the WMF and the community) that makes Wikipedia run smoothly. How would the situation be dealt with? (Oh, by the way, I'm not worried about ArbCom because it is an institution of the community and resolves disputes instead of governing like the WMF does). ChromaNebula (talk) 17:24, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
That's easy - Because they did it wrong already cf. [4], [5]. Hipocrite (talk) 19:48, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
My point still stands - the last time they did it wrong (if that's the last example) was six years ago. In my understanding, the project was a very different place six years ago. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 20:22, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Office actions are needed when these things need to be done fast, and actually need to not be discussed. That's why they're so rare - when they're not needed, the other processes you suggest are used instead. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 18:00, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • What i'm more concerned about is OFFICE actions leading to the Foundation rewriting articles in a POV manner to help placate whichever party is complaining. I wasn't the only one that brought up this concern over at Choose Your Own Adventure when it was undergoing a very long, unexplained OFFICE action. SilverserenC 04:54, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

Some things take too long

Dear Jimmy, do you think User:Mindspillage/disputes will ever make it to guideline?[6] (talk) 21:32, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

I'm afraid I just read the first statement 'If you feel wronged by another user's words, nothing is ever gained by responding on the offensive.' and immediately thought to myself, no that's not true, quite often people drive others off with their personal attacks and get to dominate an article that way. I think it is best just be upfront on WIkipedia rather than put in wishes as facts.. Dmcq (talk) 22:32, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Only fight if chance of surviving: Beware when wp:TAGTEAMs will gang-up to spin against a user. Although there are many times that people should stand strong and maintain "equal footing" with opponents, I think back about all those users who were indef-blocked about the Amanda Knox (and Raffaele Sollecito) trial. Several/many users wanted the article to emphasize the lack of criminal evidence, as noted in major sources, because the appeal trial seemed quite likely to acquit them (which it eventually did in October 2011), but we had subject-matter experts and paralegal writers who were accused of nefarious "advocacy" simply because there was a courtroom story to write, and the legal analysts were indef-blocked or accused of sockpuppetry because they used similar newsy terms, or all edited WP after a major news event was aired on TV. I tried to warn them to focus on other articles, or get a new username (wp:NEWSTART) to avoid wp:Wikihounding, but some did not take time to explore the vast ocean of other fascinating articles, and instead tried to fight oppression (they called "obstructionist" removal of text), and several many were indef-blocked. Instead, always consider the intriguing variety of other articles or photos to see, and steer clear of intense trouble. -Wikid77 (talk) 09:25, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
You might enjoy commons:File:ResourceLoader Wikimania 2012.pdf for your work on optimizing page rendering time for logged-in users, and commons:File:Measuring Quality Content Wikimania 2012.pdf for your statistics. commons:Category:Wikimania 2012 presentation slides is doing very well. Let's hope that trend continues. (talk) 17:02, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Wikid, aren't you topic-banned, partly due to spouting that nonsense overmuch in the past? pablo 21:16, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

Proposed deletion of Fcite which made major articles 3x faster

Just in case you might miss the obvious next step, wp:TfD with prejudice, I will repeat the link here. There is a TfD (of 15 July 2012) which recommends to delete Template:Fcite (and related) to stop current speed improvements:

As you know, this type of challenge happens all the time, so there is no special persecution underway, simply a feeling (by some people) that new fast-cite templates which are "6x faster now" are not worth upsetting the long, 3-year process to talk about maybe can Template:Citation/core be made a little faster, in the coming months or years. Because tests I ran with 6x-faster Template:Fcite made entire major articles (nations, celebs, scientists) reformat 3x faster (from 20-second to 7-second edit-preview), I just do not see how "slight" improvements to the gargantuan Template:Citation (+related) can hope to "amortize" that slight improvement spread out into large articles, to be a tangible speed, when even 6x-faster Fcite templates only improve major-article edit-previews by a factor of 3x. Perhaps you could offer a finance analogy, such as a $3 raise to be shared among 10 workers in a group, spreads out as only a 30-cent raise per person, offset by inflation of articles getting even bigger meanwhile. Anyway, if you have time, you might want to watch the discussion at that TfD-for-Fcite to see, when offered a 6x-times-faster solution (this week), what did people finally choose? As the man said, "I just don't know anymore"... -Wikid77 (talk) 23:00, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

Harry Potter is Still A Girl

Dear Jimbo, some weeks ago I spoke about a group of incompetent people controlling the Alkaline Diet article, putting false statements there, and others who try to correct their lies being thwarted by Admin who block them. You said you would look into it. I see that the article and talk page are now locked so myself an IP editor cannot comment, the incompetent people are still in control of the talk page, continuing their lies, the primary sources are still being ignored, and the article itself has not changed to reflect the truth of the diet as described in the primary sources. I see no comment from you on my talk page or on the diet talk page. In essence, despite the long discussion here about "gangs" and primary sources having validity ("we are not transcription monkeys" being your words), nothing has actually changed. Wikipedia remains a place with too many guidelines that experienced editors can use to beat down the truth in favor of their bias. As a first time editor I remain removed from the situation, unwilling to fight a month long battle to change on line on a biased article. Others before me tried and gave up. Your system does not work. Someone with experience is more powerful here than someone with knowledge. I suggest you do something about it. Maximus (User (talk) 07:49, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

I looked into it and I was unpersuaded by your arguments.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 12:48, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Firstly if that was your conclusion I'm not sure why you were unable to tell me that on my talk page. Secondly I listed about 10 other editors who had the same experience. That information was on the talk page of the article and was archived by one of the biased editors when I approached you. So you are essentially not convinced by 10 people which had the same experience as me. In conclusion it's cool with you that a new editor is blocked twice for attempting to add a factual referenced statement to an article and it's ok that they get attacked by experienced biased editors to the point that they leave Wikipedia. Sad. Sad considering I'm one of 10 that this happened to. If the man at the top does not care about this then the reason the system is broken is clear. Maximus. (talk) 07:11, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
I just read that page. As far as I can tell, the conflict is about what the diet claims to do.
Critics, in secondary sources, say "this diet claims to change blood pH" and criticize it on that basis.
Supporters say "this diet doesn't claim to change blood pH" and point to primary sources about the diet, some of which explicitly deny that it changes blood pH.
The question is how to decide what claims are being made about the diet. I don't think you should trust secondary sources who say "this is what the diet claims to do" above the word of primary sources who are the ones making the claims. The primary sources are good sources for the content of their own claims.
This would be easier if someone came up with a primary source making the claim, but I don't think anyone has, and even if they did, since there is already a primary source which denies the claim, we'd need to be careful about undue weight. Ken Arromdee (talk) 15:54, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
Hell, no. Proponent claims should be taken from secondary independent third-party sources, which explain:
  • the weight of each claim
  • the historical context where the claims were made
  • the reception given to each claim
  • whether the proponents later changed their claims
  • whether practitioners still use the same principles under the hood even if they have changed their public claims (not saying that this is the case here)
  • whether they still make the same claim but using different words
There can be hundreds and thousands of primary sources. An editor can present a collection of primary sources, but there is no guarantee that the collection is not biased or misinterpreted or cherry-picked. With hundreds of sources, you can easily collect a dozens sources that support a mistaken summary of the claims. It's all WP:OR original research. Articles like cold fusion or homeopathy would become masses of original research with no relationship to what the scientific community actually thinks of those topics. --Enric Naval (talk) 16:35, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
What the scientific community thinks of the claims is relevant to whether they are true or false. But it's not relevant to knowing what claims are being made. If you want to know what claims are being made, the best source is the people making the claims, not the critics. Relying on someone's critics for a summary of their position introduces bias in a much more direct way--it would be like describing Obama's health care plan based solely on summaries produced by prominent Republicans.
And yes, there could be hundreds of sources, not all of which claim the same thing. Figuring out what prominence to give them is weighing sources. Weighing sources is something we must always do when creating articles; it's not original research (though poor weighing of sources could be an undue weight problem). Ken Arromdee (talk) 17:45, 12 July 2012 (UTC)
The best sources are secondary reviews of the subject, which detail the claims being made and analyze them. Let's not dismiss every reviewer as a critic just because there are many negative things to be said about a subject. We are supposed to weigh the reliability and prominence of secondary sources to decide the weight we give to their conclusions. We are not supposed to waddle though hundreds of primary sources and pick the ones that we assess to be more correct. --Enric Naval (talk) 10:18, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
Firstly there are some independently published books from 6 years ago or more that are few in number and the key primary source of the data on the diet. Several were mentioned. Secondly the biased editors due to their lack understanding have presented articles which they claim say the diet alters blood pH when they in fact say the opposite. Thirdly my issue here is NOT with the diet, it is with the way experienced editors with admin friends can effectively block the content of an article against the facts, leading a newbie editor with significant knowledge on the topic to conclude that Wikipedia is a joke. So while it is nice all this semantics, if anyone had read a book on the diet they would know the Wikipedia article is blatant lies. And if anyone read the talk pages and saw my points made here previously, this is NOT about the article, it is about how Wikipedia functions. Anyone with a few Admin mates can write whatever they want and knowledgeable editors are blocked. And when I brought this issue to Jimmy's attention he didn't seem to care. "Don't Bite The Newbie" and "Be Bold" are guidelines that don't exist in practice. So while you can argue semantics here the fact that a bunch of bullies can rule a Wikipedia page should be the issue you are addressing. And you are not. Maximus. (talk) 00:16, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
To be clear, I didn't come to Jimbo Wales about an issue with the Alkaline Diet page. Wikipedia has millions of articles, he does not need to deal with each one. I came to him with an issue about how the Wikipedia process works, or does not work. I addressed this issue with Admin who were part of the problem. So please if you wish to comment here, make it about how experienced Wikipedia editors use obscure and conflicting rules to attack newbie editors in order to maintain their bias on an article. That is the point I brought to Jimbo's attention here. The rest is discussed on the article's talk page or my talk page where editors deleted my comments from the talk page. As my IP changes due to travel use the link on the Alkaline Diet talk page to see my talk page. Maximus. (talk) 06:44, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Regarding the use of Primary Sources, Jimbo made it clear in an earlier discussion on this topic that Wikipedia does not ignore obvious Primary Sources in favor of conflicting secondary sources. Maximus. (talk) 06:47, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Well I've had a quick look on the web about the alkaline diet to see what site pushing it say. The first few said blood pH but then I came across one saying body pH, however the level it gave was obviously for blood and anyway the insides of cells tend to be slightly acid. A bit later on I came across one with testing of saliva or urine which is neither blood nor intracellular pH. The very large majority talked about a pH of about 7.3-7.4 or talked about blood. A lot of them also asserted that lemons somehow caused alkalinity after being eaten but I saw no substantiation of how this wine to water trick was done.
All in all I'd have to say that I saw absolutely no support for the contention that they were referring to body pH as in intracellular pH. And my understanding is that if one could somehow make the 'body pH' as referred to in the Nature paper alkaline rather than acid one would die pretty quickly.
So overall I see no great conspiracy to hide the truth, just an article talking about some quack medical topic where the opinion of qualified medical people should be given the highest weight. Dmcq (talk) 14:17, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Yes and that is a few websites and NOT the books which are independently published, detailed, many years old and they don't concur with the websites. They explain the diet in detail and you have done exactly what everyone else who is controlling the Alkaline Diet article has done. You have read a few websites and concluded that you know more than someone who has read several substantial books about the diet. So you are just another person without the expertise to make these statements. So you are just another misinformed person believing that your 5 minutes of research makes you an expert. Now if I say that to you I am showing a battlefield mentality and I must be blocked. Or I know what I am talking about and you don't. You might as well say that Harry Potter is a girl, that the fact that you have not read the books is irrelevant, and your lack of detailed knowledge is not important. That is how totally wrong you are. So thank you for justifying my point exactly. BUT, this is NOT what I came to Jimbo Wales about. So you really didn't get that either. This is about the fact that when I presented these books with details of the diet and explained the diet (like about 10 others did) I was blocked from editing. And that issue has NOT been dealt with here or anywhere else. Please leave the comments about the diet to the talk page of the diet and don't waste the time here about that. My concern was with a deeper issue in the way Wikipedia works, not one tiny article in millions. Maximus (talk) 02:02, 14 July 2012 (UTC) (Yes my IP changed again, I am constantly moving for work)

To be clear, I spent a lot of time on the talk pages of the article explaining the BASICS of the diet to people who were controlling the article. I thought I was helping, then I realized that I should not be explaining the BASICS of the diet to people who are editing an article about the diet. I then saw that anyone who knew more than these people was attacked and blocked from editing. These ignorant people were convinced that their ignorance equaled knowledge. So I gave up. None of them, or you have taken the time to read a book about the diet. There are several listed on the talk page by me. There are others mentioned by an Admin that tried to help me. No one who has control of this article has read those books. I might as well watch an HBO episode on brain surgery and edit the Wikipedia article on the topic, deleting anything written by brain surgeons. Well as long as I have a few Admin mates and people like you who concur with me, my edits will take precedence over those of an expert. If you look at the archived sections of the Alkaline Diet talk page you will see that a lot of people with detailed knowledge of the diet had their edits reverted and were blocked and threatened. That is what I came to Jimbo about. The attack of knowledge by a gang of ignorant people supported by Admins and in conflict with the actual philosophy of Wikipedia. Maximus. (talk) 02:17, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
Exactly why should these books of yours have any weight? Whatever they might have said it certainly isn't wht is being done in practice from what I can see. Anyway do these books of yours explain why it is called the alkaline diet if intracellular pH is meant and that should always be acidic? Dmcq (talk) 04:17, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
@Anon: For perspective you may want to read WP:Randy in Boise, User:Jnc/Astronomer vs Amateur, and WP:Expert retention. Interesting and relevant to this situation I think. -- œ 04:29, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Actually they don't seem to be claiming they are an expert, just some anybody like me. So as far as I can see it is more like an amateur complaining to experts that they ignore or misread the books of experts that he has read correctly. Dmcq (talk) 09:22, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I think that someone who read Harry Potter would be more of an expert than someone who didn't. I'm not JK Rowling if that is what you mean. These books are not my books. They are the KEY primary source material that created the diet. Before them there was no term Alkaline Diet. They are the source material that the websites refer to. To ignore them is to ignore the Harry Potter books in a discussion about Harry Potter. The fact that you do that is a total joke. You just can't say "I've not read the books, I therefore don't know and I should listen to someone who has." To read them would take time. You don't want to invest time. Just arrogance. You read a few websites and decide that is enough. This is a joke. Get that? I really should edit the article on brain surgery because I have a brain. Not having been to medical school is not relevant. Apparently. The discussion above about Astronomer vs Amateur shows me that this is a known problem in Wikipedia that is not being solved. The reason is simple. The people in charge don't care. They are part of the problem. So they do nothing. I came here to find a resolution only to discover that there is a problem, no desire to solve it and Wikipedia is a joke. So like other expert editors before me I leave here more aware of the truth of Wikipedia and less interested in believing what is written here. And all I wanted to do was add one line to a tiny part of a fringe article to comment that it was inconsistent with the source material. I never wanted to change the article itself. But that was too much for some morons to allow. Maximus (talk) 07:11, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

Last comment before this gets archived and forgotten. I've read the books. None of the people controlling the article have, and they don't care. They don't see that as an issue. Competence is a guideline in Wikipedia. You are supposed to have it to comment on an article. They don't care about their lack of competence. You don't care. The admins don't care. Jimbo Wales does not care. All they care about is control. Like communism, Wikipedia is a great idea in theory that has become something else about control. The article is wrong, and like many before me with competence, I am blocked and threatened and deleted. Admin support that happening, and Jimbo Wales does not care. So incompetence with support beats competence. Maybe that is why communism finally failed. People without brains ran the country for too long. People here with control and no knowledge are defeating those with knowledge. That is not what Wikipedia was supposed to be about, yet that is what it has become. I saw an advertisement for a watch with Jimbo Wales talking about Wikipeida as free knowledge for all. That is not true. It is not knowledge, it is a consensus based on power bases and friendship with Admins. In fact it is a lack of knowledge that is winning here. It is people reading a couple of websites and saying they know everything. You might as well claim that Harry Potter is a girl. What bothers me most is that the poster boy of Wikipedia, Jimbo Wales, and everyone else in power here, doesn't care. The facade and the reality are different. Like the facade of communism. It is why many others who contributed to the Alkaline Diet page also gave up. I was just the last voice of truth among the many. And you people who know nothing have won again. Ten monkeys can kill a man. That does not make them smarter than the man. Enjoy your monkey madness. Maximus. (talk) 06:59, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

You are the amateur and are putting your interpretation up against that of secondary sources written by experts. It is not up to editors on Wikipedia to be experts but to judge the sources. I judge you as an interpreter and expert to have less weight than a doctor. Dmcq (talk) 08:27, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
What's compelling is that in your last two lengthy, and rather ranting, message you've failed to address Dmcq's apparently quite logical question about the Alkaline Diet (especially when it is apparent he is not ignorant of the topic, and is attempting to read up on it as you requested). --Errant (chat!) 08:41, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

I answered those questions on the talk page of the Alkaine Diet in detail for others who did not understand the diet who asked the same question. And when I explained the workings of the diet they said that blood pH was the same as body PH and I was using semantics. Which showed then knew nothing of the diet. So asking me to do the same thing here is insane. AND this is not about the diet, it is about the Wikipedia policies. As I also said here. So that is two reasons to not answer his comments here. Let me say this instead. The Alkaline Diet article is about the diet, not only about the validity of the diet. To be able to comment on the diet you would need to have read the key primary sources of the diet, being independently published literature. There are only a few, they have been around for a while, and they are readily available. There are some websites that explain the diet in a very brief way. Nothing like the 200+ page books. If I am a doctor or a rocket scientist or an investment banker does not make any difference if I have not read the source material. A wizard who has not read Harry Potter books is less of an expert on Harry Potter than a kid who has read them. This is simple and obvious. A biologist made a comment on the talk page, totally misunderstanding the diet as they had not read any of the books and they felt that their knowledge was greater than someone who read the books. So once again, read the books then comment. And get this. I never asked for the criticisms of the diet to be taken down. I just wanted to make one small qualifying statement. That was attacked and deleted, I was blocked, insulted, threatened and blocked again. Now you are attacking me here. Why? Because I know more than you? As for the article I commented about, some say it was written by a doctor at Harvard Medical School. It was by a nutritionalists at a minor university. When I contacted her for her primary sources she refused to comment. Looking at her article you can see she has also not read the books. So yeah, I'd say Harry Potter is a girl and attack anyone else who says I should read the books. And my being a wizard makes me right. But I'm not doing that since that would be... crazy!!! Maximus Out. (talk) 08:46, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

RFA reform by fiat

Jimbo, I propose that it is time for one of your executive institutions to intervene to change how administrators are appointed on this project. The current RFA process is essentially dead. This is not a complaint about incivility or unfair votes or whatever; this is an acknowledgement that your project has become hopelessly incapable of promoting new administrators.

In 2012, RFA has granted 11 volunteer editors the administrator tools. This rate of promotion won't be enough to address future growth on the project, and it likely isn't enough to even replace the editors who currently fatigue and stop using the tools.

I realize you prefer that the community make its own decisions as necessary to improve the project. However, the community has repeatedly tried and failed to come to agreement on how to promote more administrators who are well-suited to the role. For example, see the last couple years' archives at WT:RFA. Also see WP:RFAREFORM2011, a well-intentioned editor-driven project that never stood a chance of catalyzing change, because it is a self-appointed task force with a general point of view that a sufficient segment of RFA participants (including me) disagreed with.

Candidly, I expect you dismiss this note without a second thought. But I know I'm not the first person to suggest RFA is an issue on your project, and I suspect I won't be the last. I urge you to make a top-down decision, and admit that in this isolated instance, consensus-based decision making has failed. This will not be an admission that consensus never works, but pretending that it always works is proving to be folly, and will imperil your project if not reconsidered.

Good luck to you and to Wikipedia. Townlake (talk) 18:28, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Having read this over, I think it's both a terrible idea and one with potential. I don't think Jimbo should do it on his own. But if the WMF decided to try to address the problems with RfA on en.wikipedia, that might be something to consider. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 19:07, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
I agree. Reread the first paragraph; I'm not saying Jimbo should do this on his own. But to get the appropriate institution involved, his talk page seems a logical place to start. Townlake (talk) 19:18, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
We should simply allow all experienced editors in good standing (say if you have not been blocked in the last two years) to be an Admin upon request. You then need a de-Admiship procedure to allow the community to remove Admins who don't do their jobs well. That way the community does have its say and it actually acts based on relevant facts. Count Iblis (talk) 19:23, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Let's shut this activity down early; this isn't a place to discuss ideas for reform. This is a place to acknowledge that no single idea has achieved consensus, and thus an institution should make a decision for the community. Townlake (talk) 19:26, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
The Wikimedia foundation is supposed to make sure the servers run, and should not interfere with the workings of this community unless there is absolutely no alternative (e.g. when there are no admins left). We admins still somehow manage to run this place (of course we could do a better job). —Kusma (t·c) 19:27, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
The project should not be allowed to fail before this problem is fixed. Good managers solve problems as they emerge. If WMF isn't the right entity, fine, but someone has to take this discussion out of the community's hands, or the project will fail. Townlake (talk) 19:29, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Oh, well months ago I recommended an admin review board (kinda like doing performance reviews bi-annually) ... so the logical extension is an admin "hiring" board. 5 Random admins who have been chosen because they have never edited the same articles, or each other's talkpages. Other than that, the process and Q&A could be similar to RFA as it is - but between those 5 personnel and the "candidate". Yes - some pre-screening of qualifications could occur (only editors with no blocks, X number of edits, Y number of unique articles with 2 or more edits, etc) (✉→BWilkins←✎) 19:32, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Repeating: This isn't a place to discuss ideas for reform. This is a place to acknowledge that no single idea has achieved consensus, and thus an institution should make a decision for the community. Townlake (talk) 19:35, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
But you're wrong. This is one of the most watched pages on the project, and a LOT of useful discussion towards policy/processes goes on here. You can't simply post a screed like above and not expect/accept comments/possible solutions so stop trying to have the last word about your little idea (✉→BWilkins←✎) 19:42, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Bwilkins, I'm asking you nicely to not hijack this thread with off-topic commentary. Townlake (talk) 19:52, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────It's not off topic. Off-topic is suddenly discussing monkeys and Hamlet. As long as we're talking about RfA in some capacity, we're on-topic. And this is in fact the forum, unless a discussion begins somewhere that's a better forum. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 20:16, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

The topic is removal of the decision from the community, not rehashing the same tired exercise where Everybody Has An Idea For Reform. Hopefully Jimbo will watch the train wreck this thread devolves into, return to my original post, and see that removing this subject from community jurisdiction is the only logical next step. So thank you and Bwilkins for helping us get there. Townlake (talk) 20:20, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
And I'm allowed to say it's the stupidest dumbass idea I've ever heard if I want to, wherever I want to. However, I didn't say that ... I offered a valid, useful response of an alternate solution, so don't ever presume to rudely tell me to no longer comment (more than once even). (✉→BWilkins←✎) 21:46, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Exactly. Townlake, you're allowed to tell Bwilkins and the rest of us "I don't think this is the appropriate forum anymore, let's talk about it [[here]]." But you can't say "This isn't the appropriate forum, stop talking about it" on a user's talk page that isn't your own, unless that user is banned from talking about it. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 22:25, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Please see also Wikipedia:RfA reform 2012. (talk) 21:06, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

I agree with Townlake. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 21:57, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Grant tools automatically on request to any user with 5000 edits, a year of experience and a clean block log.·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 22:18, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • How about "5000 edits and/or 3000 non-automated edits" and "a year of experience and a clean block log, or three years of experience and a clean block log for the past year?" - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 22:23, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Works for me. Basically the criteria is irrelevant, just a question of the community setting a bar.·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 00:18, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
My sentiments exactly. (Time + High Threshold of Edits + Clean Block Log) = automatic buttons. Problem solved. Carrite (talk) 15:44, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I predict that would start to show some cracks about the time it takes the average new editor to get to 5,000. (talk) 00:25, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
A system which is lacking community input is a bad idea: there are plenty of editors that shouldn't have access, an automatic system would cause mayhem (and easily exploitable: spam X edits for tools). How about instead, recommend each admin to recommend X number of people for RFA each year, thus providing fresh blood. IRWolfie- (talk) 00:31, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
Under the current system I would never recommend running through an RfA to any person I consider a friend. The point of having automatic admin status is that it cements the fact that being an admin is not a big deal, and it means that the risk of cliques forming is little, and it minimizes the risk that powerhungry individuals would seek the tools. The system would not be exploitable, because there is nothing to exploit.·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 14:35, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
The slogan of "Adminship is No Big Deal" needs to be reestablished, I think. Currently RfA is a 7 day proctological exam, conducted by a tag team of 150 people of differing intentions — some of whom wish to subject the patient's rectum to blunt-force trauma during the process. Only people who REALLY like proctologists would be advised to run. I don't think change will come until the dysfunctional approval system proves itself dysfunction in real life in terms of keeping the project adequately staffed with people with the buttons. We're going to see some negative growth of the admin corps this year, we'll see how that plays out over time. Carrite (talk) 15:55, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
  • I'm not sure that the process is wrong--why should it be? Some RfAs shouldn't have been started in the first place, others weren't dead in the water at birth but drowned halfway through. It is entirely possible that the process weeds out bad candidates: look through the selection of unsuccessful RfAs from the last year and tell me how many were unjustifiably unsuccessful. And how big is this need for new admins, really? Won't we need more editors before we need more admins, and if more editors come along, isn't it likely that more of them will go through RfA successfully? I got a small suggestion for you, however: cut down on silly questions that require dissecting and writing at length about hopelessly hypothetical situations, the kind of thing that can make it such a drag. Drmies (talk) 04:09, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
[7] (talk) 07:13, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────By the way; if it were to be, I am in strong favor that identifying to the WMF and meeting an age threshold should be required. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 08:22, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Identifying to the WMF would violate the principle that we are allowed to edit anonymously. A few people would know your real identity and that information will then eventually leak out into the wider community. Count Iblis (talk) 15:35, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
Hundreds of editors have identified here, and are they all now not anonymous anymore?--Gilderien Chat|List of good deeds 15:48, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
What problem would that solve? —Kusma (t·c) 16:55, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

I think it is reasonable that Townlake has asked us to consider the single provision of whether or not this decision should be formed at the top and assimilated into the community. That answer, being the paramount concern, rightly assumes a more appropriate time and manner for suggestions. I feel it was a mistake for me to have commented on issues, aside the topic. I apologize for that.

Townlake has shown how current practices place unreasonable peril upon the project, and reasonably asserts that Jimbo should exercise leadership; and see this to fruition! I agree. I am always keen to see Mr. Wales comments. And I join Townlake, in asking that [we] focus a response, either affirming the decision should come from the top, or that consensus is preferred and capable. I'll write separately regarding my misplaced comments. Sincerely - 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 18:23, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Thanks Strat, I appreciate your support. As I expected, this thread went off-topic quickly, but that's not your fault. I look forward to seeing if Jimbo someday decides to take action on my suggestion. Townlake (talk) 23:55, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
The immediate thing that would not only be proper, but in fact, appropriate, would be for Mr. Wales to append his regards to your query. I am accustomed to propriety on this page, so I am in keen anticipation. By the way Townlake, thanks for all you have done over the years for this project. Sincerely 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 00:15, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

You can discuss whatever you like with Jimbo on Jimbo's talk page. Jimbo certainly has access to the same project talk page or wikipedia space talk page or Village Pump processes of building community consensus that we all have. He's also got exactly the same access to IAR that we all have. I respect Jimbo's circumspection. I'm sure that Jimbo and other editors respect the fact that attempts to use reserve powers will result in massive community resistance and dispute resolution processes. Fifelfoo (talk) 00:12, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

It's reasonable to expect that were some Wikia institution to thoughtfully implement a logical new process by fiat, the community would quickly grow to understand why it should appreciate the change. You'll always have a vocal minority of objectors. That doesn't mean you do nothing in order to placate that minority. Townlake (talk) 05:57, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Wikia is a private entity, off wikipedia collusion is treated very seriously. I think you need to acculturate to the en.wikipedia community, because your proposals are fundamentally offensive and violate multiple pillars. Fifelfoo (talk) 08:34, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
I have to say, this is the one time I can think of when I wish that Jimbo could still rule by fiat, because I, too, think that RfA isn't functioning correctly and community processes aren't sufficient to fix it. But the day has long passed when he could make such declarations. If he did now, they'd simply be reverted by a large number of other editors, and eventually blocked for disruptive editing. The WMF, of course, could rule by fiat as the owners of the servers, but even there they run the risk of alienating too many editors. Qwyrxian (talk) 09:54, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Please note: I don't mean to imply that Jimbo would be disruptive in this manner, only that if he were to attempt to bypass obtaining community consensus on such a significant issue, it would be viewed as disruptive. Qwyrxian (talk) 09:55, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
I think it better to be disruptive and lose a couple dozen volunteers than do nothing and wait til it's too late to address the issue. The community clearly won't do anything unless the consequences of having a bare-bones admin staff reach DEFCON 1, and even then, who knows if consensus decision-making will work. I'll admit I'm morbidly curious to find out, but still, would rather not. Townlake (talk) 13:53, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

I just wanted to state that virtually everyone knows that the existing RFA process is broken. Jimbo knows, the WMF knows, virtually every editor thats been around more than a couple months knows and so this topic isn't really anything new. The problems is in changing it. No matter how good an idea is its nearly impossible to change things on Wikipedia because there's nearly always some editor who wants to keep things the same as they have been and starts throwing around terms like Lacking consensus and although onen editor doesn't constitute a lack of consensus, Many a good idea has been derailed by one or 2 editors. Although I also know that Jimbo is unlikely to personally do anything about this problem I also agree that something needs to be done. Using myself as an example, I have been here for years with hundreds of thousands of edits and if I don't know how to do it I pretty much know how to talk to about it. I am not an admin, I have no interest in going throught the RFA process (I tried back in 2008). I could use a lot of the tools and if they show up one day then great, other than that, I'll probably never be one. A lot of other editors have the same problem. I have long advocated the unbundling the tools is the best way to go and I still support that. I do not support giving the full toolset to every established editor but there are some such as file mover, editing protected pages and a number of others that would be highly useful for established users like myself without having to request each one individually. Kumioko (talk) 14:56, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

Before requesting a community site ban of a persistent sockpuppetteer …

This is an odd situation. I find myself in the unusual position of being able to cite a source — a biography by Guardian and Register writer Kieren McCarthy — that an article subject engages in sockpuppetry and legal threats, and has done decades before Wikipedia even existed (McCarthy 2007, p. 48–49). But before we get onto that, there's one step that is always danced in the dance that we all do over these articles. And that's the Deletion Nomination From Jimbo. Do you wish to nominate this article for deletion? I suspect that it would have a Streisand effect and not achieve a consensus for deletion.

If the article isn't nominated and deleted, my next step, which I'm trying to work out how to do in a way that doesn't stir things up and splash this name all over the headlines, is a request for a community site ban of someone who (as far as I can see) since 2005 has been editing xyr own Wikipedia biography with sockpuppets, issuing legal threats in that and other articles, doing BLP vandalism, spamming external links for (purported) Mexican companies and writing articles on the same sourced solely to the WWW sites of each other, and (lately) impersonating other living people whilst doing so. (I think that future editors and administrators will be well served with having the formality of wholesale community support to hand.) That's because my involvement here is on the administrator side of things. I've tried to stay distanced, as much as possible whilst keeping an eye on this, from the detail of the content issues. I'm trying to deal with the sockpuppetry and impersonation of other people, with Wikipedia accounts in their names, and am currently waiting for the checkuser results at SPI.

The problem isn't that I think that the community will say no. I expect the reaction to be amazement at how long this has gone on for under the radar, and a strong yes. The aforelinked aren't even one tenth of the diffs that I could put forward, and this is quite clearly in part Kremen v. Cohen being fought (by both sides, albeit not nearly equally) within Wikipedia articles. The problem is that this is not just some pseudonym. This is someone with an article (and sockpuppet account names that match other living people). I remember the Deletion Nominations From Jimbo in past cases where we've had problems with people who actually have articles. (I'm sure that you remember the names even better than I do.) So I'm not asking idly, or as a joke.

I hope that I've managed to avert our getting an arbitration case out of this that doesn't even involve the principals here, as well. (See recent discussion on the BLP noticeboard.) I really don't want that too.

Uncle G (talk) 01:37, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

  • FWIW, Jimmy, I think we might want to involve Geoff in this one. Please email me (or ask Geoff to). In the meantime, I would recommend this not be too exposed. — Coren (talk) 02:44, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

"Olympic Games" (grammatical number)

Comments are welcome at Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style#"Olympic Games" (grammatical number) (version of 22:56, 15 July 2012).
Wavelength (talk) 02:25, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

People opposing those who talk here

Today, there was another chilling comment, "most prominent idiosyncracy is the amount of time he spends on Jimbo's talk page". Actually, that was the 2nd such comment, where one was made months ago, and I chose to wait to mention it. However, 2 such comments, posted months apart, indicate to me, "Where there's smoke, there's fire". Other people have written similar against talking here. Perhaps you might wish to reserve comment on this topic, or {hat} the discussion. However, I wonder if other editors have come forward, to report similar comments. I have studied "passive-aggressive" behavior and how it can deter people without direct threats. Meanwhile, I am wondering exactly how many people oppose ideas, or delete pages, simply because they were discussed here. I try not to maintain an "enemy's list" because it seems too negative; however, it is a good idea to beware known dangers in the backyard. People get bitten but knew the danger was there. I also remember, "Don't feed..." so perhaps this discussion should be closed, in due course. -Wikid77 13:48, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

Yes. I don't like it, enough said. It's a bizarre argument if you really think about it - that someone's comments should be discounted because they talk to me often.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:58, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Fine, we can move on to other issues. -Wikid77 14:34, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

Image filter resolution

Sorry you got unanimously outvoted.[8] Would submitting a patch to mw:Extension:Bad Image List adding a user preference to add one or more URLs with arbitrary media files to block instead of using only the centralized list require the approval of the community or just the developers? Line 17 here performs image censorship in the centralized, top-down way that the community and board rejected, so a patch to add a distributed filter list should be in line with community decisions, right? (talk) 03:29, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

That page is wrong. I voted yes. I've written to the board to try to figure out how to get that updated quickly.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 12:19, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
You have an account there, you could simply edit it if it's just a transcription error... Platonides (talk) 17:07, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I don't remember my password. I requested it hours ago but it hasn't arrived.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:42, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I strongly support the creation of a personal image filter. I worked very hard to reach a compromise resolution which does not close off the possibility of real progress on this. SJ and I will be releasing an FAQ about this soon (tomorrow, I think, but time zone differences may mean a delay of a day or so). In my view, stated vigorously at the board meeting, an early version of the resolution would have been interpreted incorrectly as the board rejecting the image filter completely.
What I think we can do is convene a small group of people (design by massive wiki discussion tends to suck) to design a very lightweight solution, taking into account and resolving genuine and thoughtful objections, and hold a project-wide vote to get a clear instruction for the Foundation. I am confident that this can take place relatively quickly.
I think it important to note publicly that an early version of the resolution was, in my opinion, deeply disrespectful to the community. At least some senitments were expressed that we actually should reach "closure" on this and pass a resolution that would cause the community to think that they should not work together on a new proposal. Those sentiments did not carry the day.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:10, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm really interested in the proposal. But i have to hope that you thought it trough until the end and that it is a real compromise. Otherwise conflict would be unavoidable, again. PS: Are the readers involved this time? --/人 ‿‿ 人\ 署名の宣言 15:16, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I should mention that my request for a simple user script is still open. See User:Wnt/Personal image blocking for the idea I've presented, which tries to address user demand while avoiding the ideological issues I have with the officially proposed image rating system. Wnt (talk) 15:33, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Maybe you should read commons:File:ResourceLoader Wikimania 2012.pdf too. Anything which adds a user preference requires a gadget, doesn't it? (talk) 17:00, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I could be mistaken, but I thought that the user preference involved was simply to name the custom .js file in your preferences, and the file did the rest. For example, the stock "peer reviewer" script makes extra tabs appear, and I don't think it has a gadget, does it? Wnt (talk) 08:02, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

You guys seem to be acting super confrontational about this. If someone personally wanted to filter images, is it bad for us to allow that? Also, the idea of centrally maintained image filtering might have been rejected, but what if someone else you trust has a list that you like and would like to have your filtering based on? Seems reasonable to me. Anyway, get back to your Jimbo-bashing. -- Avanu (talk) 16:50, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

Rather grow up and stop the Jimbo-bashing. This is a fairly important topic, yet as you support the notion of filtering images, you show yourself as an ass! And that image is getting through with astonishing clarity. Filter your conduct. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 17:04, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Wow. Do you get enough sleep? I only asked that if a person wants to filter what they see, how is that bad? -- Avanu (talk) 17:11, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm sorry Avanu, my frustration is directed at Larry Sanger. Even so it was out of line. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 17:19, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
All parties are correct enough for now. Just wait six months down the road when teachers give young wikipedians urls to long lists of porn images. I have a feeling I'll be in for it about then if I don't come up with some cryptological function which can only be decoded by humans past a certain level of puberty. I wonder what the karmic rewards for solving that one amount to. (talk) 17:07, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I am sorry. Jimbo says he strongly supports having a personal image filter by cancelling the Board's longstanding direction to implement one. If that is strong support, what would be opposition? JN466 17:39, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
As I said, I fought hard for a compromise resolution. I only agreed to a resolution that does NOT block further progress.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:24, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Welcome to the state of the art of filtering internet porn. The bad news is, it doesn't work. The good news is, that doesn't matter. (talk) 17:56, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
You're right about the efficacy of filters, especially as Wikimedia is concerned. The Commons bestiality video was accessible on the computers in my son's school. --JN466 17:59, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, so now if any kid at that schools sees another one, they will know what it's called and be able to talk about it with their parents, teachers, or the police. It is very unlikely that it will influence their lifestyle choices. (talk) 19:19, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
The notorious unreliability of algorithmic filters of the entire Internet appears to me to have virtually nothing to do with our design problem. The problem of figuring out how to filter hundreds of billions of different images with completely random and possibly misleading clues is a very hard one. Our problem is a very easy one. There are only about 2 million categories on commons. There are a few hundred to a few thousand categories with NSFW images. Even taking a very cautious approach to what to include would be a big improvement on the current situation for those users who find something like this useful.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:47, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
It sounds as if you support some kind of filter but a different kind from what was proposed. Was an "algorithmic" filter proposed? I'd agree that one would expect anything algorithmic to be unreliable. I don't know what's been going on in discussions about this. Has it been proposed to ask every person who uploads a picture to click on something saying it's unsuitable for small children if it is? Maybe with a link to a page of guidelines on what might be considered unsuitable? Michael Hardy (talk) 22:09, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
....and presumably clicking on "unsuitable for children" at the time of uploading would be a decision that's subsequently editable by other users and subject to discussion. Michael Hardy (talk) 22:17, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Except that would be both medical and legal advice, and both completely wrong[9][10][11] and subject to wide variation in jurisdictions, respectively. (talk) 22:48, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

The new resolution seems to be rescinding the request to the Executive Director to implement a filter but isn't reversing the board's support for the concept. It seems the board won't be imposing a filter on the projects, but does that prevent en.wikipedia from implementing one, or the foundation from supporting en.wikipedia in doing that? --Anthonyhcole (talk) 18:08, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

The board pulled back from ordering the Foundation to implement a specific version. I only agreed to that decision because it was made clear that we (the community) can still develop something and get consensus for it. The ball is now in our court to design something broadly popular. I don't think that's going to be hard to do.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:24, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I sure hope it happens here. And I have wanted this for a long time. 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 18:41, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Any member of the community who knows PHP and Mediawiki can do it. I hope you get it right. Maybe whatever fetches the blacklist should use a special HTTP user agent string so the best filter sources don't give away lists of porn. (talk) 19:19, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Jimbo, do you have any thoughts about a process for discussing and deciding this? --Anthonyhcole (talk) 19:43, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Yes. Below I link to a page where I hope we can discuss in a productive way a design that will garner widespread support from the community. Once those who are in favor of a filter have done that (assisted by people who are skeptical but for particular design reasons that can be solved) then I think we should reach out in good spirit to people who have expressed strong opposition. Some people will be unreasonably opposed and we will be unable to get their support. But a great many who have been opposed have been opposed, in my view, because of misleading FUD spread by people who have no idea what they are talking about. An outreach program with a very clear and simple design that anyone can understand, a design which answers as many legitimate objections as possible, ought to change the minds of most of those people. Once we are comfortable that we have something that will be popular, we can hold an RfC about it. Possibly this RfC can be for all languages, or possibly the RfC can be for English Wikipedia. It doesn't really matter because I advocate that each language hold their own vote about turning it on or off, so if English Wikipedia strongly asks for it, I believe the Foundation will develop it and let us vote on using it - and the other languages can respond as they wish. (But I believe that a good design will be so uncontroversial that it will be adopted everywhere quite quickly.)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:53, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 20:37, 15 July 2012 (UTC)
I'll believe it when I see it. Face-smile.svg Until then, it is just more words on the topic without anything actually happening. JN466 02:10, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
For all the supporters out there, for this concept, I find it interesting that not one of them has been able to find someone to work on it. How hard can it be. Set up a server that manages a list of categories you want to filter, define an API, create a user gadget that polls the api and done. It's won't be very good, it might fail at times (JS being JS) but it's probably enough for 90% of those who want content blocked, it won't be reliant on WMF or the communities, you get the experience to implement it 'properly' at the MediaWiki level (which is MUCH more difficult to get committed, but doable if you ask me) and everybody would be happy. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 09:34, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
BTW using categories is a bad approach in my opinion, but the whole point was, built something external, cheap and likely bad, but that will shut people up. Work from there to get something good. Gradual improvement has always been how we build things, it's just that you can't do it on en.wp anymore (especially not with something as sensitive as this). So take it OUT of the Wikipedia context, so you can slowly build something that WILL work in the Wikipedia context. Create breathing space. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 09:44, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Commons should have had some kind of image filter long ago. It is just plain embarrassing to have searches on "cucumber" showing photographs of a woman with a cucumber up her whatnot, purely for the benefit of the same old faces on Commons who want to repeat the COMNOTCENSORED argument.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 09:52, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Personal image filter

I'm starting a page where I hope to see a constructive discussion of the desired characteristics of a personal image filter, with a view towards getting a very high degree of community support for the concept. User:Jimbo Wales/Personal Image Filter with discussions at User_talk:Jimbo Wales/Personal Image Filter. I'll kick the main page off in the next few minutes with some initial thoughts.— Preceding unsigned comment added by Jimbo Wales (talkcontribs) 19:33, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

I've tried to link to the code necessary to put this within reach of any intermediate level MediaWiki programmer, and I have estimated that the task requires no more than four pages of PHP and comments at present.

It turns out that the possibly sufficient meta:Controversial content/Brainstorming#All-or-none filtering is on a completely reasonable path to constructing a more featureful filter and has other advantages including not requiring staff to spend time making legally-precarious judgements (and possibly risking safe harbor provisions in some jurisdictions) about what porn is good for kids. It would also take less than half the work of the best alternative solution. And again, all of that initial work could be used for the best alternative as a second step. User talk:Jimbo Wales/Personal image filter#keep it simple. (talk) 07:31, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Login on main page

Jimbo, just a thought: Maybe you could throw the login link on the main page so that, well in particular me (and maybe a few others),people do not have to type in a letter or such to get to the login part. Again just a thought. Good day to you!Keystoneridin (speak) 04:43, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

I have no idea what you're suggesting here. The "log in" link is available from the corner of every page by default for logged-out users. It's in the upper-right corner next to a link that reads "Create account". --MZMcBride (talk) 03:25, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Quote Source

İ know that you probably get a lot of these but in a watch shop there is a quote from you "Others called it impossible...I called it Wikipedia." Can you link me to the source please? W.D. 18:30, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

  • There are many sources for "Some called it..." - see Google Search for the phrase: "Some called it impossible, I called it Wikipedia". -Wikid77 18:42, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
    • The source is the advertisement, because that's where I said it. :-)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:27, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
      Did they make you come up with something inspirational then? :-) "Just stand here and say something interesting" W.D. 07:33, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikimania Barnstar

Wikimania barnstar.png Wikimania Barnstar
It was great to meet you at Wikimania 2012! --evrik (talk) 14:21, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

When is it appropriate to link to youtube or Facebook, if at all?

The question comes up because I was thinking of the rise of Facebook as a place where those who want to help and volunteer can get together, and I am aware of at least one volunteer non-profit that started as a Facebook group. Should that group ever have an article written about them. This particular non-profit, which I will not plug, claims 13,600 members internationally, so it is not unrealistic to eventually have an article about them. From my perspective, it would be appropriate for a link to the Facebook group page that started the organization, perhaps in the infobox, or a "see also" link. The youtube part of the question comes from finding news reports online to use as a source for an article I worked on, but the only place I can find a link now that the originals are dead links is youtube. Would it be acceptable to reference a youtube video of a legitimate news report? Otherwise I risk losing the original source as a dead link and the factual information labeled as unreferenced and at risk for deletion.Camelbinky (talk) 19:40, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

The short answer is "rarely." The medium length answer is "only as supplemental material that doesn't verify anything." The long answer is this: As a Facebook page is by definition published by the people/org it's about, it's not an independent source per our reliable sources guideline. As such, it can't be used to verify anything about the organization. But in an otherwise well-written, well-sourced article, it's perfectly acceptable to have a link to the Facebook page in the "External Links" section after the references. On the YouTube subject, don't reference the YouTube video. Reference the news report itself, and don't link to the YouTube video. Per the same principles that allow us to source books even when they're not online, we can source an NBC (or Fox, or CNN) report that's not online, too. Online helps, but it's not necessary. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 19:20, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Thank you Jorgath. That clears up alot of uncertainty for me.Camelbinky (talk) 19:31, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I just wanted to note that there are some exceptions to Youtube. Because the Wikimedia software has a 100MB file size limit some of us have loaded some videos to Yourtube to be used on articles. These videos are freely distributable. A lot of them can be found under the Fedflix channel. Here is one example: Navy Yard Gun Factory part 2. For the most part though the above is correct and Youtube should be avoided. Kumioko (talk) 19:40, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Assuming the organization is notable, if the their facebook page is their official web site, then ut should be linked. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 20:05, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
*blink* What kind of notable organization would only have an unprofessional Facebook page as its official page? I'd certainly not care about, nor donate to such an org no matter how fantastic their goals. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 20:32, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I have no idea. :) I was answering Camelbinky's question hypothetically. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 20:57, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Well, yes, but as I said, it's not a third-party source, so it should be an External Link, not a verifying reference. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 20:09, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Actually, you can use Facebook as a source providing it meets the 5 conditions of SPS. See WP:SOCIALMEDIA. A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 21:02, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
RS/N regularly supports the reliable use of Youtube sources, where:
  1. The source is published on the channel of a reliable source itself
  3. The published copy is a copy of a broadcast or show that would otherwise be reliable for the article and claim.
  4. The source actually supports the claim.
We don't accept "copies" or "user uploads" as these are copyvios and may have been tampered with. Fifelfoo (talk) 23:40, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

bienvenue visuals de hakpenguin

bienvenue a tous et merci de m'accepter sur ce forum

je ne sais pas si c'est la bonne categorie alors on verra, mais voici ma presentation.

nom: hakpenguin (michel en vrai) grow older: 21 ans sexe: mec passions: foot, pin et jeux vidéos

merci a tous et a bientot sur le forum — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:58, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

The IP thinks this is a chat forum and is introducing himself. Looie496 (talk) 20:13, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
For a full translation for the curious:i don't know if this is the right category, so we'll see, but here's my introduction. name: hakpenguin (michel for real) age: 21 years sex: guy passions: football, pinball, video games. // thanks to all and until later on this forum [signature]. Hope that helps. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 20:23, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Bienvenue a Wikipedia! Mais je doit dire que ici, c'est le Wikipedia anglais. Je crois que vous voulez le Wikipedia français, qui est ici. Bienvenue encore! - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 20:14, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
My response translated: Welcome to Wikipedia! But I have to say that here, this is the English Wikipedia. I think that you want the French Wikipedia, which is [here]. Welcome again! - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 20:16, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia is Butt-ugly

Well, apparently The Atlantic thinks so..... Wow, this comes as a shock to me because I actually really like the way the wiki-pages look...

Here is an empirical truth about Wikipedia: Aesthetically, it is remarkably unattractive. The gridded layout! The disregard for mind-calming images! The vaguely Geocities-esque environment! Whether it's ironic or fitting, it is undeniable: The Sum of All Human Knowledge, when actually summed up, is pretty ugly.
So the real ugliness of the site, Gardner notes, isn't cosmetic. It's that Wikipedia has "a built-in bias against design and user-friendliness."

Guys, what do we think about this?--Coin945 (talk) 06:06, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

Beauty is subjective, and so is design friendliness. (talk) 06:26, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Wikipedia uses MediaWiki, which is now a standard for many wiki-based websites. Wikipedia pages are designed to load in virtually any browser, and do not require fancy use of JavaScript, Adobe Flash Player or other plug-ins in order to work correctly, unlike many modern websites. If this makes the pages look somewhat basic, it is a price worth paying.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 06:34, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
Beauty is in the brown-eye of the beholder. (talk) 06:49, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
The current layout is simple and beautiful. No less, no more. -- Sameboat - 同舟 (talk) 06:53, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
MediaWiki can be made to look a lot nicer. See for an example.JN466 19:29, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
That is seven columns in places, so I wouldn't recommend it unless it passes mobile rendering and, but that looks sweet. (talk) 04:54, 14 July 2012 (UTC)
Yup, Annabelle Dexter Jones looks sweet indeed in today's featured wikifashion article. But seriously, what's all this commercial buzzword nonsense about "mind-calming images"? Wikipedia is an innovative general encyclopedia. It doesn't need to be marketed like a fashion gadget. Well presented, user-friendly layout, sure... But gratuitous eye candy, no thanks! —MistyMorn (talk) 11:47, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
There's a reason why I still have Wikipedia set to Classic in my preferences, rather than whatever version it's on now. SilverserenC 06:54, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
The clunky look does pass on the message that Wikipedia is the free encyclopaedia that anyone can edit, so I think there is something valuable about that which one should be careful about not losing. I think to myself in terms 'the free encyclopaedia that just about anyone might have edited' and the look helps that way too to tell people to just be a bit wary.
The user friendliness is something that could be improved I think and |I realy think more thought needs to be put into implementing WP:NOTPAPER. I'd like people to think more in terms of trying to sell information to people. One thing shops windows do for instance is display just the main points not cram everything in the window like some articles do here instead of using subtopics. The problem is getting especially acute with the use of mobile phones to access information. Too many editors think in terms of how much information they can shove in rather than how best to feed the information to readers, they even duplicate stuff from subtopics because the subtopic has far fewer page views! All that does is make stuff harder to skim through and find the relevant bits never mind being a total waste of resources in Wikipedia servers, bandwidth, mobile browser charges, and users time and patience. Dmcq (talk) 14:38, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Of course, "butt-ugly" is such an odd term ...I have followed one or more really nice-looking butts in my day ;-) (✉→BWilkins←✎) 19:56, 13 July 2012 (UTC)
...ok...lets see; Alexa Global Traffic Rank;
  • 6
  • 1,783
I think its the Atlantic which needs to begin growing in a more meaningful way. --Hu12 (talk) 05:25, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Please see also [12] (talk) 07:10, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

  • Those complaining about ugliness should register and account and use a "skin" to alter the look of the site in preferences. The "Cologne Blue" skin looks pretty darned good, in my opinion... Problem solved. Carrite (talk) 15:41, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

The article saying "Wikipedia is ugly" is just a space-filler made up that morning to provoke attention, but I was surprised to find the Slashdot thread where just about everyone agreed that the article is badly misguided, with comments like "decoration gets in the way of functionality". Johnuniq (talk) 07:48, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

The point that some people (I will not name them, they know who they are) continue to miss, again and again, for decade after decade, is that decoration and functionality are not mutually exclusive, but rather complement each other like two people dancing—you only notice when one dancer is out of step with the other. The reason Apple has 43% of the smartphone market has nothing to do with "I need an iPhone because the Joneses have one", but is solely due to the fact that decoration and functionality are indistinguishable and married at the hip. It's 2012; anyone still arguing about decoration vs. functionality needs to get out of the basement. That argument ended years ago. Good decoration is functional and good functionality is decorative. I think it is very clear that when articles appear saying that "Wikipedia is Butt-ugly", they really mean that Wikipedia is not user-friendly. And they are, of course, absolutely correct. This has been a problem from the very first day Wikipedia appeared, and it has never been solved. Think for a moment how long it takes an adult to learn how to use Wikipedia. The investment of time required to achieve this feat, and the total number of hours and days is staggering. Now, how long does it take someone to learn how to use an iPhone? Five minutes? One hour? The reason people in this thread don't take these concerns seriously is because they are thinking about design and functionality from their own insular POV rather than the wide range and perspective representative of our readers and potential new editors. Viriditas (talk) 09:07, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Apple design both the hardware and software and make them work together, and the user is (for the most part) doing things with which they are already familiar—that's why Apple's products work. Bolting a WYSIWYG editor onto a website will give unsatisfactory results no matter how superficially pretty it is (try it at Wikia). What would work would be a downloadable app that runs proper code on the user's machine, and which exchanges wikitext with Wikipedia's servers through an API. Serious effort to standardize the wikitext would also be required. Regardless of all that, editing here is hard because editing an encyclopedia is hard. Johnuniq (talk) 10:36, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Yes, we need that sort of homely "nuts and bolts" workbench feel to stimulate editorial participation. Universal ergonomics ("degeeking") should be the priority, imo. Editing is often fiddly anyway -- no need to make it fiddlier than necessary. —MistyMorn (talk) 12:46, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
That's like saying cars were better in the old days, before modern conveniences & safety, because that lack of convenience "stimulated" working under the hood. As much as I hate Wikia's ads, their editing interface is simple to grasp and easy to use for common functions. "Driving" Wikia is more like a modern car ride, while Wikipedia is more like a rat rod. Wikipedia would do well to implement a better layout & edit tools for the end-user by default. People who want the classic look can switch back, and they can always use the same hand-coding they always have. — The Hand That Feeds You:Bite 12:29, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
User friendliness [13] is key, I quite agree. But personally, I feel a functional, plain jane matt appearance may be more appropriate for WP than a high gloss finish. Nothing puritanical in that, just the feeling that a tidy workbench look is just fine for an analytic npov online encyclopedia that is a continuous work-in-progress and isn't too bothered with glossing over stuff. I mean, do we really want our texts to look photoshopped? Especially at the expense of any higher loading times for the less well-off around the world... And yes, sure we're happy if handy users feel like getting under the hood or behind the wheel.
Them's just my 2 s₡ruffy style notes, and wikia may be just fine 2, —MistyMorn (talk) 13:53, 17 July 2012 (UTC
I believe a nicer design wouldn't deteriorate functionality. A hover-over image expand feature (similar to the reference tooltip) would be great. FonsScientiae (talk) 11:05, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
Cars and models apart, I certainly don't mean to argue against functional design improvements that ultimately serve to keep it cognitively simple. Quite the opposite. What imo wouldn't be helpful is cool eye-candy visuals ("mind-calming images" etc) that distract from the task in hand. Rather in the same way as irrelevant illustrations can [14]. —MistyMorn (talk) 11:30, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

Image filter FAQ

Jimbo wrote (above):

I strongly support the creation of a personal image filter. I worked very hard to reach a compromise resolution which does not close off the possibility of real progress on this. SJ and I will be releasing an FAQ about this soon (tomorrow, I think, but time zone differences may mean a delay of a day or so). In my view, stated vigorously at the board meeting, an early version of the resolution would have been interpreted incorrectly as the board rejecting the image filter completely.

So, can we have a status update on that FAQ? Looking forward to reading it. --Larry Sanger (talk) 14:48, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

There's a WMF FAQ here: NewtonGeek (talk) 14:56, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
That's the FAQ. For me the key point, which I fought hard to include, is a formal expression of the principle that if we can come up with a broadly acceptable proposal (which I think is not difficult), the Foundation will implement it.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:41, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Cool - Yes, I support your taking the steady approach with this image filter Jimmy - Personally I despair sometimes at the slow progress through open and usually lengthy discussion .... but there is a strength reflected in such developed consensus decisions - we are getting there with Pending changes as well - Wikipedia:PC2012 - ongoing discussion and a request for input from editors (a policy/implementation scope is required to be developed prior to switch on later this year - please all join in there and and development of the most beneficial/consensus driven switch on of the tool) - thanks to you Jimmy for your continuing contributions and inspirational guidance and input to the en wikipedia project - regards to you from - User:Youreallycan - and thanks to Larry Sanger too for his continued care about the en wikipedia project. - Youreallycan 21:02, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Not sure that this is going to be enough to avoid a boycott in November. Regarding the central point of the FAQ, I appreciate the gesture. But of course if the community supports a filter, the Board will support it too. They're not that crazy. They aren't going to come out against a filter that the general public thinks is obvious, if the Wikipedia community now once again (?) wants it.
The Board, including you who ostensibly support a filter, voted down a vaguely-defined, weak, opt-in filter as defined in the 2011 resolution. Now you are starting a new discussion with the notion of getting a filter that will secure the ever-elusive consensus. But, of course, we know how the Wikipedia community works, particularly the part of the community that comments on this issue. A consensus will never happen, and the voices against will be so shrill that it will be all but impossible for the filter to appear "broadly acceptable." The only way a filter can be installed is if some people--including some very influential, or at least very loud, people--are made very unhappy. --Larry Sanger (talk) 13:35, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
And a boycott is a way you think will bring about this unhappiness? I'd love to hear more details on that plan. Tarc (talk) 14:22, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
Youreallycan's suggestion that the community join in the discussion of pending changes applies to the the filter discussion that's been set up as well. NewtonGeek (talk) 14:27, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

I'm not seeing what the big deal is on adding a method for people to filter Wikipedia to suit their personal taste. Maybe I would like a Wikipedia with zero images for better mobile browsing? Maybe I would like a Wikipedia with images that are no larger than X pixels? Maybe only high-contrast versions of images for better visual appearance for sight-impaired people. Maybe audio versions only, or LARGE PRINT, or maybe I'm just fed up with the word 'poo' and want to filter it out of my results here? Who knows. But why would someone be upset that *I* can control what I want to see here? Very strange. -- Avanu (talk) 14:32, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

"Non-free image removed" image

Is it okay if I use the actual "Non-free image removed" image on my userpage, like so: User: (talk) 16:20, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

Is it legal? Yes. Is it obnoxious? Yes. Looie496 (talk) 17:10, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

Hello, Jimmy

Just wanted to say Hello. BTW today is my 41st birthday, so please wish me a happy birthday!!!!!! I am catching up with you (age wise, that is)! LOL LOL!!!!!! (talk) 19:02, 18 July 2012 (UTC)


I am beleaguered by several editors who have too much time on their hands, too much interest in attacking and dragging down another editor, me. I am an experienced editor, apparently in the top 30 of wikipedia editors by article count, and am interested in innocuous, boring topics of historic sites, honestly just to have a hobby that avoids controversy.

I took a complete six month break from Wikipedia to do other things, just ended recently, rather than appeal an overly-long, arguably-not-justified block. There's a history of AFDs, ANIs and other actions against me, and new ones happening now: Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/St. Boniface Cemetery, Wrought-Iron Cross Site‎, Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents#Doncram at it again.

In the ANI proceeding, an editor who has initiated multiple previous ANIs seems to have completely gotten it wrong with accusations he made in opening this ANI, and that has been clarified and the article he disputed is resolved. But he is going on with other accusations, piling it on. I can't deal with round-the-clock participation in legal processes. That is what this editor and some others like to do, to drag others down and in. I am afraid the general strategy is to follow, to attack and to goad, and to raise ANI reports, AFDs, other actions. The general impression given is then that I am causing disruption. I am not. It has been pointed out by several others that there would be no disruption, if the critics just backed off. I don't know how to get them to stop. The ANI forum is their forum, with their chums and often having obnoxiously chummy in-jokes at expense of others, like a horrible cliche of an exclusive men's club. ANI draws in uninvolved others who make off-the-cuff judgments, uninformed by the long history and the facts. I believe that the Arbitration board would decline a case on this, and I don't fancy a long drawnout legal process with diffs, etc, though I could provide a few hundred or few thousand if necessary . The pattern is simple: I am creating and developing articles and list-articles on innocent topics, and they are following and harassing.

This one editor and another involved are highly invested in proving me wrong, in establishing justification for their past and present behaviour. I think that they are so compromised in that motivation that they ought to be banned entirely from following me.

Could you possibly please take a look, and consider some kind of intervention?

My current userpage summarizes most of what I have been working upon recently.

sincerely, --doncram 22:02, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

*waves from the sidelines* --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 22:21, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Sarek, given how deeply involved you are here, it's a bit disingenuous to wave "from the sidelines". You're responsible for this situation.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 23:45, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
I just meant that in the sense of "Hi, I'm here, will participate if called on, otherwise I'll just shut up." And, um, am I responsible for this situation, when Doncram is still creating articles like St. Boniface Cemetery, Wrought-Iron Cross Site is a 3.1-acre (1.3 ha) historic site near Selz, North Dakota that was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.
It includes wrought-iron crosses.
?--SarekOfVulcan (talk) 01:10, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Considering the active ANI discussion, this has the appearance of forum shopping. I would suggest you not create discussions like this while the ANI thread is ongoing. IRWolfie- (talk) 22:32, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
I unfortunately have to admit that doncram's claim that he's free of issues, and the WP:OTHERPARENT aspect of this is indeed troubling, and having read through reams of diff's has changed my mind about doncram overall. Wow. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 22:47, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
It is never forum shopping to let me know about things. Could we please stop dehumanizing people by making that claim?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 23:34, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Sir, with all due respect - it is forum-shopping when he's asking you directly to intervene and over-ride the community, including the current discussion that the community is having. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 23:38, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
It is never forum shopping to post on this page. Ever.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 23:46, 16 July 2012 (UTC)
Bw, I agree that the user isn't innocent in their actions but neither are many of the others involved. IMO both sides continue to instigate rather than to step back and have escalated this far beyond where it should be. I also don't think its forum shopping by coming here since Jimbo has long said that but I also don't think Jimbo will or should get involved but it may help to give some insights into the goings on at the front lines so to speak. Kumioko (talk) 00:11, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
As a long-term observer and occasional participant in this multi-year saga, I suppose I should weigh in. Doncram is a long-time and enthusiastic creator of stub articles related to the National Register of Historic Places; usually the places themselves, but also architects, architectural styles, and other related content. Unfortunately, he edits in a style best described as "bot-like". His articles generally read like a database dump from the National Register Information System because (as far as I can tell) that is how he usually writes them. Because of the very rapid rate of creation and the very limited use of sources, they sometimes contain more or less subtle errors of fact. (I remember helping disentangle a biography of an architect which constituted a few scraps of biographical information and a long list of buildings on the NRHP designed by the architect; on closer examination, Doncram had commingled two architects with the same name.) This has been compounded by ownership issues: one of the conflicts I remember was a series of cases where the NRIS database held a year, say, "1888", but it wasn't clear whether that was the year in which a building was constructed, significantly altered, restyled, or what have you. Doncram dealt with this by writing the articles with a sentence to the effect of "It was built or a significant event happened in 1888"—Orlady will remember the exact phrase, but it was cacophonous, conveyed nothing of value to the reader, and he strongly objected to its removal. Needless to say, this style of writing has been a perennial issue at the NRHP WikiProject, and not surprisingly, his edits have attracted a great deal of scrutiny. At various times, people have suggested that Doncram draft these articles in userspace, incubate them in projectspace, etc., but this is always met with a Bartleby-like reply that he chooses not to.
Because understanding the problem requires a certain amount of historical background, and because people are generally reluctant to slap heavy sanctions on an energetic and good-faith contributor, there's been a fairly broad consensus that something is wrong with Doncram's overall pattern of editing but no consensus on what should be done about it. Because no one's been willing to address the underlying article writing issue, this has developed into a festering war of personalities between Doncram and his most active critics. I think he's correct that he's been subject to more intense scrutiny and is more rapidly criticized than an editor with no history, and that his critics are sometimes unduly quick to provoke him and find fault with him. But treating this as a problem of clashing personalities alone will not solve the problem. At some point, Doncram needs to accept some change in his editing style that will allow him to achieve a modus vivendi with the community. Telling him and his present critics to avoid interaction will only defer the problem to the next critic. Ultimately, it is he who bears the responsibility for this situation.
(But Sarek, you shouldn't be poking him. To quote the Screwtape Letters, "In civilized life domestic hatred usually expresses itself by saying things which would appear quite harmless on paper (the words are not offensive) but in such a voice, or at such a moment, that they are not far short of a blow in the face." Post diffs or speak to the case, but don't let him know you're here just to wind him up for sparring.) Choess (talk) 00:24, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
commingled two architects with the same name -- John W. Ross, if I remember correctly. But Sarek, you shouldn't be poking him. To quote the Screwtape Letters, "In civilized life domestic hatred usually expresses itself by saying things which would appear quite harmless on paper (the words are not offensive) but in such a voice, or at such a moment, that they are not far short of a blow in the face." Noted. Thanks for phrasing that as you did, it's something to strongly consider. --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 01:20, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I recall a similar mindset toward User:Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ). He is about as prolific in certain areas and sometimes has been reluctant to explain his edits. My final opinion is that you have some editors who spend more time often mediating and talking (like me), and some who actually focus entirely on putting the lego blocks in place and sometimes the creation is beautiful and sometimes its just a POS. But I think the answer for these kinds of editors is simply channeling their good effort in a positive way. If they refuse to take *ANY* advice whatsoever, then sure, they can't live here. But in fact, their efforts do a lot to build the walls of this place, and their zealousness can suffocate if you don't poke a few holes in the bag, but it is probably worth it to keep them going. As for Sarek, I believe he has a level 10 or higher pokey-stick, and isn't afraid of using it. If you realize he has a pokey-stick and steadfastly steel yourself to its querulous pokes, you end up dealing very effectively with Sarek. So long story short, we're all human, we have our faults, we have to learn to AGF, deal with it and deal with shit, and just move on productively. Spending time finding fault isn't nearly as helpful as spending time working out a good way to work together. Can you imagine if everyone here had a PhD? :) How much more painful that would be..... I do jest of course... but just a little. -- Avanu (talk) 00:39, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
You needn't be sententious. Avanu, I wasn't being hyperbolic when I said this has been running for years. I agree with you that Sarek is an excellent wielder of a pokey-stick. However, having seen this grow for years, this did *not* start because Sarek got up one morning and decided to go "poke poke poke" for no reason. (I believe Doncram's conflict with Orlady predates Sarek's involvement, for instance.) There has been a steady process of escalation wherein the community has AGF'd until it strained itself, made various suggestions and accommodations to try to get Doncram to edit in a more acceptable fashion, which has had absolutely zero impact. (Well, that's not quite true. There was some attempt to get him to agree to create articles only if he had a source in addition to the NRIS database, IIRC, in the hopes it would encourage him to create more meaningful stubs. He acquiesced to that...and fulfilled the letter, if not the sprit, by adding a lengthy, verbatim quote from the National Register nomination to each article he creates.) "learn with shit and just move on productively?" Guess what? That's exactly what you're looking at! Because years of coaxing, pleading, nagging, and needling to try to get Doncram to "work together" with other editors have produced no discernible impact on Doncram's editing, the community "deals with shit" by submitting his work to aggressive scrutiny, secure in the knowledge that there will usually be something there worth correcting. All of the cheerful cooperation and rapprochement you've suggested has been attempted long ago, and Doncram has stolidly plowed through it. Choess (talk) 01:14, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Sorry for seeming sententious, good word by the way, first time I've ever seen it. I wasn't trying to imply that Sarek was the primary, secondary, or anything close to that in terms of blame here. Perhaps it was wrong of me to mention him since it seems to have sidetracked my point. I also can tell that a lot of people have been trying to work with the guy and it seems like their patience is worn thin. I was only trying to suggest that we find a good way to channel this guy and help people feel less intensity here. Sorry if I was unclear. -- Avanu (talk) 01:24, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Thank you for being gracious, and I know you meant well. A calm, dispassionate voice is always appreciated when frustration runs high. For myself, I'm not just frustrated because these sketchy sub-stubs keep appearing, but because I feel like we've hovered so close to a solution for so long. I think even the people who have severely criticized him see a lot of value in Doncram's energy, but somehow persuading him to change course and firm these up such a little never seems to take. Maybe Dennis Brown is right--we should just convene an RFC (Gah! Time-Sucking Black Hole of Diffs!) and run with things. Thanks for trying to help with the problem. Choess (talk) 01:34, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I see a suggestion that Doncram be "channeled" and I rush to say that this is the wrong direction to be taking. One of the interesting challenges (and frustrations) in working with Doncram is that he is a very capable contributor (it takes brains and creativity to come up with lines like "was built or has other significance in 1888" and the massive outpourings of words that he produces in his defense when his work is questioned or challenged), in addition to being highly motivated and productive; he isn't the kind of eager editor with limited capacities whom others seek to "channel." He's too good to be channeled by others -- by how does it happen that someone of his apparent abilities so persistently fails to grasp the issues that his editing raises for so many others? --Orlady (talk) 02:24, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I made some attempts to inquire about his philosophy of editing etc. during one of these episodes some time back, but came away without much insight. Were the project further along, I would suggest asking him to set up an NRHP backend on WikiData, where many of the qualities that irritate people here would be transformed into virtues. There may be glimmerings of a greater philosophical question here: why is it that vast energy and productivity in the Wikipedia sphere often seem to be accompanied by obstinacy and inflexibility? Choess (talk) 02:52, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
  • I'd just like to comment that the dispute here falls into a pattern that seems to recur frequently, where one editor who values quantity of edits more than quality comes into conflict with other editors who value quality over quantity. It might be worth thinking about whether there is some principled way of addressing such conflicts. Looie496 (talk) 02:06, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
    • Personally I value the quantity of quality edits. (That is supposed to mean that the problem with mass creating editors is not the quantity but the frequent sloppiness accompanying mass creation, which creates problems for other editors to cleanup). Editors who both manage to follow basic policies and create many articles generally don't run into problems. ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 02:36, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
    • The solution is obvious. We fork Wikipedia into a 'quality' one, and a 'quantity' one (with appropriate policies for each), and then let the readers decide which they prefer... ;) AndyTheGrump (talk) 02:33, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
      • Don't say that Andy, the thought of the fact that it already happened and that now quantity is all that is left is too saddening to bear.·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 02:41, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
      • Aargh...I just spent two hours crafting a comment which I lost in an edit conflict because I'm so rusty. Here goes again.

        I hesitate to comment because my opinions are often discounted due to the fact that Doncram and I have edited together in the past, and they perceive us to be friends. Whether we're friends or not, I have been an observer and I have things to say.

        Mainly, my point is that yes, Doncram has repeatedly edited in this systematic, "bot-like" way. And? When he started, and Wikipedia was newer, these edits seemed to be welcomed as an integral part of building a wiki. Now they seem to be cause for editors with the sensitivity that nothing should go into mainspace until it's complete to drive him out. As Kumioko says at the ANI, "that is the nature of Wikipedia, someone adds some info, someone else modifies it and over time the article gets developed. I'm not sure what in the Wiki concept is not clear." Thank you, thank you, thank you. I have said in essence this same thing over and over again in comment at various discussions, most recently in my first comment at a discussion of why there aren't more women editors at Wikipedia talk:Articles for deletion/St. Boniface Cemetery, Wrought-Iron Cross Site, where I said, in part that the editors who disapprove of Doncram, "in my experience, want to insist that every editor complete every aspect of an article before moving it to mainspace, thus going against the very heart of what a "wiki" is supposed to do, which I believe is to allow each person to contribute with their strengths." (And, by the way, when did "bot-like" become a bad thing? Aren't bots used in Wikipedia all the time?)

        Choess says above that "There has been a steady process of escalation wherein the community has AGF'd until it strained itself, made various suggestions and accommodations to try to get Doncram to edit in a more acceptable fashion." Acceptable to whom? Acceptable to a few vociferous editors who don't like his chosen editing style? Or acceptable under the "rules" of Wikipedia? Because as far as I can tell, other than when his frustration has led him to edit warring, Doncram does not consistently do anything against the "rules". Some of these editors don't like stubs at all. Would Wikipedia be where it is now without stubs? Some of them object to his correct statements which reflect the ambiguity of his source. Isn't some small amount of correct but vague information better than none at all? Some contend that what he produces doesn't belong in an encyclopedia. Aren't they missing the point that Wikipedia is not a traditional encyclopedia? It's a WORK IN PROGRESS!

        I know I had other pertinent stuff in my original edit, but it's late and I'm tired and frustrated. I'm frustrated because this whole discussion reminds me of all the things that I used to love about Wikipedia, and of all the reasons I basically quit editing. I firmly believe that if there's a shortage of editors at Wikipedia it's because of editors like the contentious voices who refuse to "live and let live", but instead insist that everyone contribute some minimum level of article that includes aspects that do not reflect their strengths or interests. If you let me contribute what I'm good at and I enjoy, then Wikipedia is a fun hobby that has the added benefit of adding something constructive to information readily available on the Internet. If you insist that I include in my contributions things that I find extremely tedious or tiresome, then it's a job, and since you're not paying me, I quit. Lvklock (talk) 03:26, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

        • Thank you for that comment Lvklock. I could not have put it more eloquently, and definitely not that late at night :D —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 09:24, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
        • … except, of course that we had all of these same discussions about mass-produced stubs, evincing all of the same concerns about cleanup, error, name confusion, and burden upon the majority of people who edit by hand, almost a decade ago when Rambot (talk · contribs) was mass-creating articles. The idea that Wikipedia has changed in this regard is nonsense. As is, indeed, the idea that 'bot-like behaviour is a non-issue. We have a 'bot policy for a reason. (Indeed, it was Ram-Man who began it.) Uncle G (talk) 10:10, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
  • Lvklock got it exactly right! I have also edited with doncram and have found it to be a very positive experience. While doncram gets prickly when poked (as do many of us), and while his editing style may not always be perfect (whose is?), I don't think there are more than a dozen editors I've encountered who are more hard-working and serious-minded about improving Wikipedia than doncram. I also respect Orlady tremendously and for that reason find the ongoing disagreements particularly difficult. My take-away from this is that Wikipedia and Wikipedians need to be less bureaucratic, less focused on having everything done the same way, and more tolerant and accepting of different styles and perspectives. The types of people who are attracted to work long hours at improving Wikipedia are likely to be a bit quirky, and if we can't accommodate quirky people, the future vitality of Wikipedia is not bright. To borrow from a cliche, we'll get more done with honey than vinegar in dealing with quirky people. So here's to more honey and less vinegar. Cbl62 (talk) 00:34, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

Sir, the results of my recent seismological testing of ANI indicate there is oil buried at a depth of 12.3 Stu under the forum. The yield is predicted to exceed 45 Gigabytes production per decade initially. I also notice I was not the first to drill in this area. I suspect the presence of oil is well known and that is the underlying cause of the current conflicts on the surface.

Apparently the American approach to seizing the assets is shock and awe, it was a tactic used in the Gulf Sir, it produces 25 % 'friendly fire' casualties which everyone is HAP HAP HAPPY about, yessir !

The press are being managed very well as always sir, and global viewpoints of motives for the fighting, casualty rates, and overall strategy of the offensive are effectively suppressed. Penyulap 00:30, 19 Jul 2012 (UTC)

Dear Jimbo

You were mentioned as a final arbiter (beyond ArbCom) for editors to appeal on Wikipedia at AN/I. -- Avanu (talk) 02:39, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

Very long and detailed external criticism of a wikipedia article

attempt to bypass blacklisting Qc76fJ (talk) 04:57, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

"It is never forum shopping to post on this page. Ever."

Can I make the same ruling on my talk page? Why or why not? Hipocrite (talk) 00:22, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

You really can't, because Jimbo's statement glosses over the reality and dynamics of this page's importance. He may not consider it forum shopping to post on this page, but many of the 'go ask Jimbo' questions are entirely too-thinly veiled attempts to draw attention to something, since this is one of the most (and most eclectically) watched talk pages, is watched by a lot of people holding positions of responsibility, and it has the historic open invitation from Jimbo. That is, while it may or may not be forum shopping since it is not a decision-making page, posting here will more often have the net effect of canvassing. But the larger question should really be... is this really a bad thing? In a situation that works by consensus, the current "loser" in any discussion has no disincentive to attract a larger audience, because more people can't usually provide a worse outcome, and the larger a discussion, the higher the likelihood of a "no consensus" outcome. The winners in a WP:CONLIMITED discussion, of course, benefit from such a dispute not being publicized widely. I'd actually think a more apt comparison is that posting to Jimbo's talk page quite often parallels a Hail Mary pass by someone "losing" a discussion. Jclemens (talk) 01:05, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Personally Jclemens I disagree with you. IMO if an editor wants to put a message on thier talk page that says that anyone can leave a message and its not considered forumshopping then thats up to them. It opens a big door and the user should accept that but I don't view it as against policy but up to the decision of the editor. Just my opinion. I would though that the message should contain a link (as this one did) to the main discussion though. Kumioko (talk) 14:13, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
For most user pages, there's no question of FORUMSHOP (although CANVASS applies...), since most user pages aren't watched nearly this much. After all, it's WP:Centijimbos, not "jimbos" or "kilojimbos".... Jclemens (talk) 18:34, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
The Holy Relic of Jimbonaeus Walesimus is one of the more powerful in the Hallowed Crypt of Vagaries and Ineffables. With one wave, thine enemies may be smitten by an ignoration of all rules and precepts, while onlookers verily say mighty loads of trouts can be cast among us in all directions. Truly even the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch dost pale in comparison to the slightest glimpse of the Relic. No shopping was done by him who brought forth his concern before the Relic, and yet many would yet say it was shopping nonetheless. Truly such paradox can only be contained herein. -- Avanu (talk) 02:30, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Although I don't agree, I think Jimbo's intention is to have an 'open-door policy' where there are no restrictions to the use of his talk page.--TP (alt) 01:30, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
But that doesn't change the fact that many editors use his talk page as an attempt to forum shop in order to try and overrule some other incident. SilverserenC 02:07, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Many editors attempt it. It rarely works. More often, it simply attracts more attention to the underlying issue, to the detriment of the person posting here to avoid accusations of 'forum shopping' - and asking Jimbo to "consider some kind of intervention", as above, is exactly the type of posting that tends to boomerang most. I think it often works as a sort of safety valve - and sometimes (rarely) posting here may help us focus on the real issues, rather than the endless bureaucratic nonsense that so often dominates elsewhere. AndyTheGrump (talk) 02:43, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
What I would say is that it has worked less over time, which I ascribe to the increasing political maturity of the community.--Wehwalt (talk) 07:15, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Agreed. I've followed the "Run to Jimbo" phenomenon for some time now, and it usually has the same result: Losing debate --> Run to Jimbo --> People become interested --> More opposition to your cause. Ultimately, this talk page is about as ineffective at enacting change as ANI. Resolute 14:07, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I think people are overlooking an important point. In a very significant number of cases, people who complain here about forum shopping are just simply and purely in the wrong on the underlying issue. One common technique to try to win what is a hopelessly brutal and unfair attack on someone is to try everything you can to avoid independent minds taking a look at it. Suppressing discussion by screaming about "forum shopping" or "canvassing" is very frequently a sign of something bad happening. There is never anything to fear for the righteous party in asking more people to take a look. This is, as was mentioned above, a rather 'eclectic' place to do that, as people follow this page for a wide variety of interests.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 08:50, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
So are you saying that the policy section on WP:FORUMSHOP should not exist? Because, if they don't apply here, then they don't apply anywhere else either. SilverserenC 09:47, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I think that WP:FORUMSHOP is too often relied on to shut down or suppress legitimate discussion than it is to deal with actual bad behavior. As TheDJ says below, "There is forum shopping, and there is forum shopping." One of the things that are unhealthy about the constant jabbering about canvassing is that alerting people to an issue deserving of more attention is a risky activity. I think that policy about forumshopping and canvassing is fine, but we should examine how it can be (and is) misused to stop people from doing good work to generate consensus.
Let me give a personal example. I've opened a discussion to brainstorm what I hope is a thoughtful way forward on the personal image filter issue. I mainly want participation from people who agree that a filter is worth doing (and worth compromising with others to achieve), and from thoughtful opponents who feel they could be persuaded if the thing is done in a suitable fashion. I have a pretty good idea of about 20-30 great people who I'd like to be involved in that discussion. What happens if I go around and notify them on their talk pages? Well, I don't want to find out, but I'm pretty sure I know: a massive community drama about canvassing. So instead I just talk here on my talk page and feel happy that Signpost picked it up. I think that's really problematic - if even I can't convene people for a specific purpose, I'm sure others feel even less empowered. That's not good for community or consensus.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:28, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
@ Jimbo Wales, I recently saw an editor go to different talk pages of people he knew and explain that he was starting discussion of an idea or two. It worked out. Useful discussion of those ideas has been happening. Obviously, that editor knows his way around well or that wouldn't have worked. I'm sure it helped that his ideas for new initiatives have so much merit. the editor's name is Dennis Brown. I think he may still be helping out in the discussion to increase editor retention. So my point is that it is possible to contact 20 or 30 editors to ask if they'd join in a discussion. If I wanted to do something like that I'd ask Dennis Brown how he did it. NewtonGeek (talk) 11:43, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I'm flattered that you think Jimmy could learn something from me, but I think you give me too much credit (and thanks for the point here, I don't normally watch this page). When I started WikiProject Editor Retention, I did so without an answer, instead gathering people so we can first find the real problems and together search for solutions, making it a bit different. I think this is different than canvassing (which IS improperly claimed all too often, see my RfA). Others might say that I exploit opportunities to link the project on high profile pages to bring awareness to the issues when it is applicable, but I would never take advantage that way. We have cookies and punch there, by the way. Dennis Brown - © 12:06, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I'll bring pie and ice cream. NewtonGeek (talk) 12:25, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
I don't think you have to go to an opposite extreme to justify one exception. This user Talk page is a unique one among many others. Perhaps there will come a day when another editor gains some degree of status and will have a similar large viewing audience, but suffice to say, this page is unique. One exception doesn't upend all of policy and society. Jimbo seems to have indicated long ago that this page will be a place where exceptions can be made and people can be ignored or listened to simply because. Think of it as 'royal prerogative' if you wish. The community can decide to discuss and weigh in or can avoid something entirely, or Jimbo can remove it by fiat. It is one place where the non-bureaucratic-Wikipedia still exists to some extent. So let it be the miracle in the meadow, where ethereal sprites play and dance, and let the magic live unquestioned here. -- Avanu (talk) 10:00, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
(e/c)There is forum shopping, and there is forum shopping. It is there as a useless behavior that that annoys people and doesn't help drive your point forward. There is posting so omnipresent that it becomes annoying (because the same people are answering the same question over and over again at different fora) or SOO present that it can be considered spamming. There is also the BOLD variant of it, where you basically just have to kick an issue up and up, because people simply have not noticed what you have posted. However, this is Jimmy's talk page, it's HIS courtyard, not our shared forum. So as long as he is not personally annoyed by it (as made clear by his personal statement), in my opinion, forum shopping doesn't apply here (especially with the special status Jimmy has). At most WP:CANVAS applies slightly. People should stop capturing things in WP: shortcuts and start applying a bit of measure to the labels they put on people. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 10:06, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Hello. I'd like to buy The Forum. How much does it cost? --Dweller (talk) 10:16, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Well we have WP:verifiability for that it is never forum shopping to say something here and as we know the mantra is 'verifiability not truth'. ;-) You really do always have to allow a way of complaining about the system so I agree this has to be an exception to any rule about forum shopping however formed. Dmcq (talk) 11:10, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Personally, I grow weary of all the claims of forum shopping and canvassing. The act of notifying many people isn't canvassing, it is how it is done that determines whether it is appropriate or not. I have my own bad experience where my previous silence still leaves a scar. Coming to the most neutral and heavily watched page on Wikipedia, here, can't really be canvassing because there are simply too many diverse and independent people here, so there is no singular person or group to persuade. It is simply shinning more light on a situation, cutting both ways equally. It can't be forum shopping because it isn't a forum, plain and simple. It is more like a bar, where everyone wants to say they know the bar owner, and it attracts every kind of patron, good and bad. I don't normally watch this page, but it seems that people come here in desperation, as a last hope, even when they don't understand that they are clearly in the wrong. Perhaps sometimes they are not. That function is served no where else: the last hope. I wouldn't be inclined to take that away from someone, nor brand them as a policy offender for reaching out in this fashion. Dennis Brown - © 22:22, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Jimbo, what you wrote here is very noble, but FYI not so long ago, an editor was banned and blocked because he/she raised a legitimate issue here. Evidently what you write here has zero impact at the AN/I and ArbCom. -- (talk) 16:39, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

Which editor was this? Tarc (talk) 16:41, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
"This" might be the one who was already a sock, who then continued to make new WP:EVADE accounts again and again (✉→BWilkins←✎) 17:22, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

We tied Google+ as a social media site

Apparently Wikipedia is giving off an image that this is a social media site rather than an encyclopedia. In this CNN article they say, "Google+, the 1-year-old social network that pundits declared dead last year, ties Wikipedia at the top of the list of social media sites, with a score of 78 out of 100."--v/r - TP 21:12, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

The report itself--v/r - TP 21:15, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
👍 Like :) A Quest For Knowledge (talk) 21:24, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Eh, encyclopedia, social media - they rhyme, and they're both on the Internet, so they're the same thing, right? Face-tongue.svg - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 21:33, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
In other news[citation needed], Wikimedia Commons has recently tied as the highest rated porn site Face-wink.svg (✉→BWilkins←✎) 21:41, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
If Commons is a porn site then I won't be working at my new job for much longer :D -RunningOnBrains(talk) 23:31, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Wikipedia is engaged in social information processing and as such is a form of social media, and is currently accurately classified as a collaborative type of social media. This often repeated meme that Wikipedia is either an encyclopedia or a social media site is and always has been wrong. Viriditas (talk) 22:56, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
Sure, anything crowd-sourced (so-called) and collaborative is always going to be classifiable as "social". Nothing to be ashamed of... —MistyMorn (talk) 22:48, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
Of course, comparisons with Facebook and YouTube, for example, does feel a bit like apples and pomegranates, and maybe not entirely complimentary to the online encyclopedia. Presumably (I haven't checked) the ratings are based on feedback from any user, including consumers of information who don't go in for direct social interactions. The pollsters can always reply that they're looking at satisfaction with the social sites as a whole, rather than with social interactions on the sites. —MistyMorn (talk) 11:45, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
I have a question regarding page view statistics. If a page is viewed externally, like from huggle for example, does Wikipedia get credit for the view? If mirrored sites, external editors, and dashboards don't record as a view here, how skewed would that make the results? 76Strat String da Broke da (talk) 23:23, 17 July 2012 (UTC)
It won't count mirrors (though I would suspect they hold only a minuscule fraction of the global views); but external tools that actually contact Wikipedia will be counted if they view Wikipedia through the normal web mechanism (HTTP). Tools that use the bot API will probably not be counted, however – and I don't know offhand which of those AWB is. — Coren (talk) 00:37, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
I'd think the API would count, it's still an HTTP connection.--v/r - TP 01:10, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
Possibly, but that's not certain; it's all in what data, exactly, they look at. Personally, I'd exclude API calls regardless of the transport because automated edits are not really informative when you want to measure traffic: their use pattern is unusual, and don't match "visits" by any reasonable metric. I expect they are (or should be) treated much like crawlers, and left out of "visitors". — Coren (talk) 02:44, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
How did public libraries score? Consolidated corporate publishers? (talk) 02:40, 18 July 2012 (UTC)
On a more serious note, Wikipedia is pretty easily defined as an encyclopedia built through crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing is a form of social media (well, at least, it'd be easy to argue that it is). Ergo... - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 04:10, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

WP:ISAFORUMGETUSEDTOIT Wikipedia is a forum, get used to it. Never going to take the top position as the number one social website, but it's use as a forum will be a primary attribute as it grinds itself into marginalisation. Penyulap 00:43, 19 Jul 2012 (UTC)

Gah! Me on a social media site? I feel contaminated like I just found half a slug in my sandwich. :) On a more serious note there are I feel quite grave dangers in making it anything like a social site as that encourages in-groups rather than neutrality. Dmcq (talk) 09:28, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
see my little exposé, how one lovely simple sentence turns into a gazillion pages of infighting between factions over the inclusion or exclusion of newbies. CREEP is the tool of the hour for creating in-groups. The fundamental systems of wikipedia in place today generate exponentially increasing discussion. To repair, or even slow the problem by streamlining only speeds up the increase. While everyone is distracted looking at the number of articles and the number of editors, the cultural changes will broadside the project, you don't even see it coming. The editors who don't join and the editors who leave go somewhere, the number in that 'pool' of potential you don't even track, why would you ? Penyulap 18:29, 19 Jul 2012 (UTC)
One reason people don't want to be admins. I was considering adding a script that scrambled my password if I ever started up an RfA subpage since I must have gone doolally to do so. Dmcq (talk) 19:02, 19 July 2012 (UTC) Actually though that one is rather overlong at least they were discussing something reasonable. It's when they get onto introspection and recusal and baring souls at a place like AN/I is when it really gets at me. Dmcq (talk) 20:45, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

Lord Lucan

I recently re-wrote this article, which has just been promoted to FA status. If the username is accurate, it appears that the subject's wife/widow objects to some of its content. A content issue involving a peeress who was almost murdered by her husband (Lucan is infamous in Britain) may be an issue for the WMF, especially as she seems to be unaware of policies like reliability and verifiability. Discussion here. Parrot of Doom 21:32, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

Based on running checkuser, I conclude that this is unlikely to be the real Countess of Lucan, but rather a known abusive sock puppeteer. I recommend that a full checkuser investigation be launched to confirm my informal results. Having said that, I think the content questions should be taken seriously, not as first-hand reports, but as potential problems to review. (If there are no problems, that's great!)
It's probably best, despite my results, to treat the user with respect as if she/he is who she/he claims to be, with a request that they get in touch with Wikimedia UK to validate their identity to us. That'll probably be the end of it. The main reason I say this is that the ip number traces to what appears to me to possibly be a public terminal. Would a 75 year old Countess possibly be using a terminal in a Westminster City Council Library? I have no idea, but would not want to presume certainty.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 02:09, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
My research assistant tells me that it is not unknown that personages of great distinction use Westminster City Council libraries. The [Dowager] Countess is active, even 38 years after the events in question, in making her side of the story known. Sam Blacketer (talk) 20:43, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

You have been mentioned in discussion in relation to amending the unique powers your account possesses as a route of appeal from Arbcom

Dear Jimbo, I have mentioned you in discussion here in relation to amending Arbcom policy to remove reserved powers related to appealing arbcom rulings from your account. You may be interested in any discussion that will happen there. thanks, Fifelfoo (talk) 02:49, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

I hope you don't give up your appeal powers until Arbcom shows greater commitment to justice. (talk) 20:57, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you!

Special Barnstar Hires.png The Special Barnstar
There's only one suitable reward for the founder: a very, very special Barnstar. Userboker (talk) 09:54, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

According to one Wikipedian "one childish statement" is not "harrassment"

I would disagree. I did not investigate the full extent of the statement or the circumstances, but I'm sure alot will be written concerning it by others... given your recent support for something to happen about cyber bullying, I was wondering yours and the Community's thoughts about an Admin having said such a thing to someone who came to them for help. I think civility should be extended to having admins be sympathetic instead of "boys will be boys" attitude of "suck it up" and "get thicker skin" and my all time favorite "more heat than light" (the single most obnoxious over-used piece of 'baloney' used on Wikipedia to make oneself look semi-intelligent). I'd love for the dispute processes we have actually be run by those who care to actually get involved instead of run by those who would rather call those that complain "whiners".

For someone to be guilty of harassment requires a course of harassing conduct directed at an individual or group of individuals. A single comment can be rude, uncivil, and even actionable misconduct, but alone it is not harassment. Monty845 19:56, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
Was about to say the same thing. Harassment is the result of a pattern of incidents rather than a single incident. So no, "one childish statement" is not harassment. That does not mean it should be overlooked either, especially if egregious. Resolute 20:01, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
The point I was trying to make was that the admin should have been more understanding and helpful rather than dismissive. Perhaps looking at it from the point of view that the editor mispoke using the word "harrassment" and the admin could have done more to be helpful.Camelbinky (talk) 20:58, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
One childish statement is not harrassment. It could well be a personal attack, though. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 21:22, 19 July 2012 (UTC)
I just saw this, based on Camelbinky's comment below. I'm not sure your intent here Camelbinky. You're cherry-picking a comment from my talkpage that is in relation to at least 3 threads (and a Diplomacy barnstar) from a specific user. I'm certain that if you asked TheIrishWarden their interpretation of what I said, it certainly would not match your attempts to drag my name through the mud for apparently reason. Please review those 3 threads on my talkpage - you can find the link quite easily. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 16:41, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
For ease of access: Here, here and here cannot be read separately. There certainly was no brushing off an editor, it was merely reinforcing the "ignore the troll as we had discussed before". (✉→BWilkins←✎) 16:46, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
"Ignore the troll" is no different than the "boys will be boys" and "ignore it and he'll leave you alone" attitude that is no longer acceptable in schools today regarding bullies. If you find yourself not being able to be a part of the solution then you are indeed part of the problem, perhaps take yourself away from even commenting on any complaints in which your answer is "nothing to be done about the problem" and leave it to those who would find an answer and be constructive and not criticize. And as far as your comment on the other thread that you have undone a block that was wrongly done, please show me the link that, I would love to see three you have done, but one is enough. Last time I checked I could not find one in your history out of last 12 at the time I checked, it has been a year though and perhaps things are different. But I have a feeling if I checked your last 20 block reviews I would probably have unblocked at least 3 or 4 more than you. And assume good faith on "attempts to drag my name through the mud for no apparently [sic] reason", I am not dragging your name through mud, my actions are not for no apparent reason, and the reason is I do not agree with your actions, comments, or ability to be an admin and frankly do not wish for you to be an admin. That is my opinion and a valid one I am allowed to have, if you feel it to be uncivil so be it.Camelbinky (talk) 17:16, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
You pick a comment off my talkpage then say "perhaps take yourself away from even commenting on any complaints in which your answer is "nothing to be done about the problem" and leave it to those who would find an answer" You're telling me to not reply to threads on my talkpage now? Hmmm, that would indeed be uncivil, especially to an editor whom I'm in the process of guiding overall. We do have an essay about Do Not Feed the Trolls, and helping someone to put away the troll food is not advocating/supporting bullying. You can take a quick look at my own talkpage to see the history of racist trolls that I no longer feed.
Oh, and I unblocked someone this morning as a matter of fact, based on their unblock request - and I remember at least one other in the last 7 days - they're out there for anyone to see.
I have no issue with people having personal opinions, or indeed am I ever beyond critique. However, cherry picking words, taking things out of context, and randomly making stuff up don't help me to fix things. Have actually good reasons. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 17:58, 20 July 2012 (UTC)
I asked for the IP to be blocked because they called me a 'horrible little shit'. That was not the only reason why, I have been harassed by similar IP's for the last week and every other IP who harassed me in that way got blocked immediately for harassment. As far as I'm concerned there is some major sock puppetry going on with these IP's and they need to be blocked temporarily. The SPI can be found here. A single comment may look not that bad but when you penetrate the surface of the case you'll see there has been around 10 comments from different IP's. Thєíríshwαrdєn - írísh αnd prσud (talk) 18:08, 20 July 2012 (UTC)

Plus Bwilkins really helped me to settle a dispute with EggCentric last week which is why I gave them the Diplomacy Barnstar. I don't think they have recently been following what has been the aftermath of this dispute last week, so I wouldn't blame them for refusing to block. I'm sure if they knew the full extent of what has been going on (continual harassment, had to get my talk page and user page protected and SPI cases to try and find culprit) they would have blocked them straight away. Plus the only reason I sent this to bwilkins was because they blocked one of the first IP's just after the dispute was settled so I thought they would be more willing to stop the IP. thanks Thєíríshwαrdєn - írísh αnd prσud (talk) 18:13, 20 July 2012 (UTC)


[15] needs only about 15,000 more signatures before rumor has it that Parlament would be compelled to debate the issue. Is that rumor correct? I thought that was only true for petitions created at on which I can find no mention of the issue. Should you ask signatories in the UK to try that route? [edit: "if the subject of the e-petition is currently going through legal proceedings, it may be inappropriate for a debate to be held" says the FAQ.] (talk) 21:23, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

There is no truth to that rumor. Getting this to a parliamentary debate is more likely to be accomplished in other ways.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:51, 20 July 2012 (UTC)

Hi new here

Hi everyone glad to be at this forum. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:55, 20 July 2012 (UTC)

Welcome :) and happy editing, IRWolfie- (talk) 02:47, 21 July 2012 (UTC)