User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 118

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The future of Wikipedia

Hello Jimbo. As someone who is now dipping their toes into Wikipedia can I ask you how you think it will evolve in the future. As good as it is (and I am impressed by the depth and accuracy of many of the articles) do you see wikipedia continuing for a long time to come yet? As I understand it there is competition out there though not with the same success, but there is bound to be another wiki out there now or in the future that will one day compete. What do you think can be done to stay ahead of the competition? --Jonty Monty (talk) 09:44, 9 October 2012 (UTC)

Ps did you enjoy the bagpipes? :). --Jonty Monty (talk) 09:50, 9 October 2012 (UTC)

  • I'll leave space, above, for Jimbo to answer, but Jimbo has made many statements about the future of Wikipedia. He has indicated that point-and-click updates to articles, as WYSIWYG edits, are likely to become more popular among a wide range of editors. When asked about millions of articles, he noted the major articles could be translated between the expanding 260 languages, and Wikipedia would have far more than 100 million articles. Also, he has noted that he intends to stay involved with Wikipedia for many years to come. -Wikid77 (talk) 20:53, 12 October, revised 12:26, 13 October 2012 (UTC)
Personally I see the future of Wikipedia being a fairly bleak place but I sincerely hope I am wrong and I continue to edit in the hope that I am. Every day we make it harder for people to edit, particularly those that are not intimately familiar with Wikipedia's thousands of rules, policies and guidelines. We block more and more users and IP's for smaller infractions and develop more tools to restrict editing like Pending Changes and ask ourselves why more people aren't editing. Why would they? It is human nature that if something is hard to do, we will do something else so as we implement new ways to make it harder for people to contribute by protecting templates, articles and even entire namespaces we damage the foundation of why Wikipedia was established and we erode the concept of "Anyone can edit". We need to get back to our beginnings of Assuming good faith and foster a spirit of cooperation and trust rather than implement new ways of showing our editors, future editors and readers how much we don't trust them and how we think that we need to protect Wikipedia and its articles and content from the people we should be hoping will be positive contributors. Kumioko (talk) 21:49, 13 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Improvements everywhere as surveyed users said would edit if knew where to help: In one of those WMF surveys, the least worry of editors was the "editing technology" (9% concern). However, more users (41%) said they would edit more if they knew "where to help" and "avoid conflicts" or arguments with other editors. Our coordination tools have had "growing pains" due to time to learn what is effective, while some over-sized templates (or too-small template limits) have hindered quick tasking for editors to follow (1.6 million articles reformat 2-4x slower than needed). The monthly WP:GOCE drives have been fantastic to fix listed articles, averaging "99 copy-edit errors" each. However, I think we could switch other tasks to 2-week edit-drives, to gain people who could not commit for a whole month, and have more short drives. The slow Javascript tool-buttons or over-size templates (I mean S-L-O-W) have been disastrous to "quick-moving people" who do not want to wait "37 seconds" to edit-preview a major article. Hence, the new Template:Cite_quick can show that same article in 10 seconds, and allow 900 cites, not just 400. Tests with the new Lua script cite modules are showing similar results (scaled up because the test2 wiki seems 2x slower than enwiki). Plus, Lua modules can be more complex, and analyze article text faster than ever before, to allow modules to "suggest" other improvements during editing. The edit-window tool buttons are being redone faster. Meanwhile, some bots are getting better: DASHBot is updating citations to insert the archive-URL links, to have fewer deadlinks in future months. The copyvio bots (VWBot) are listing about 20 articles per day, some with "close paraphrase" text. Ironically, that was another area hindered by over-size templates, but the common link-menu Template:La was just updated 40% smaller to allow collaboration pages to be larger without hitting the too-small template limits. As more people discuss templates, from a scientific view, then template limits could be raised to reasonable limits. Just recently, the NewPP preprocessor limits were changed because some French Wikipedia templates tried to implement a huge database (knowledge base) in templates (perhaps like {cite_doi}'s 6,000 database subtemplates), and the French template crashed an Apache server (so the template limits were changed). I guess my point is that WP is coming out of the technology "dark ages" where better techniques are being used for templates, plus smart Lua modules, and WYSIWYG editing for newcomers. Plus, Jimbo has been pressing for better tools as well. And those technologies should quicken our coordination tools, without S-L-O-W editing nor asking people to edit during whole one-month drives because the tools were too slow to fix much in two weeks. We could not seriously ask people to help edit major articles if everything stayed as slow as in recent months. Faster editing, faster templates, and smarter tools were needed, and they are being developed in the next 3 months. -Wikid77 21:25, 14 October, 13:06, 15 October 2012 (UTC)
Hi Wikid77. It was apparent from your first comments onwards that you are extremely au fait with the technology, something I confess to be lacking. It does though appear that Wikipedia will not lack any new technology going into the future. Something I'm sure will keep it ahead of the game. Jimbo Wales staying for a few years yet will surely be a benefit. I still don't know if he enjoyed the bagpipes though. :) Oh,and thank you for the replies. Jonty Monty (talk) 13:34, 15 October 2012 (UTC)
Well, the current WP technology is already amazing, when used in streamlined mode. I was stunned to realize an entire huge article, even with small templates and 25 images, can be reformatted within 2 seconds for any user-preference image-size setting. Most readers, with image-size setting as 220px, see a cache-copy of each formatted article within 1/5 second. Also, perhaps some questions for Jimbo should go to email, as I am not sure when Jimbo views comments here as being rhetorical, as musings for other readers, rather than being a direct conversation. He has noted he regularly reads within multiple forum websites, so I am unsure how much time he has to respond here. -Wikid77 (talk) 23:45, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Smaller main articles, plus better gadgets: I forgot to mention Jimbo has expressed the need for smaller, simpler main articles. So, I think we could work toward a "nutshell" style for the major articles, as smaller condensed pages, where each smaller "Article X" would link to the larger version as "Article X (detailed)" to defer all the extensive statistics, tables and lists about each topic. That future might involve some "readability limits" such as 900 words, or 15 paragraphs in a main article. Meanwhile, Jimbo has also advocated better tools or gadgets, and that could perhaps lead to a tool that could "auto-summarize" a large article, as the suggested nutshell text, to be adjusted by editors familiar with the subject in general. We have also talked about a "notability tool" that might count search-engine hits which met criteria for wp:Reliable sources, where the search-engine results could be screened for dates to determine how long a topic has been in the news. More later. -Wikid77 (talk) 04:01, 18 October, revised 13:04, 19 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Lua 10x perhaps 100x faster: In early tests, for the planned Spring 2013 release, of the wp:CS1-style cite-templates rewritten to use Lua script Module:Citation, the performance has been 8x-10x faster than the original {cite_web} or {cite_book} (etc.) templates. However, those templates have complex logic, with hundreds of parameters, which would be slower in any language. Now, I am thinking, for some other templates, which perform simple repetitive tasks, then the performance could be 100x (or more) times faster than the original templates. This could lead to some smart-check templates we did not anticipate, such as entering new text into a template {ctypo} which could scan (and warn) for common typos in the new text, then just remove "{ctypo|...}" when ready to submit the new text, after checked by the Lua-based template. It could be a form of "smart spell-checker" that, rather than questioning every new name or tech jargon, would simply scan for the most-common misspelled words, ignoring people's names, to warn of common typos in the text. If such a template ran within a split-second, which I think it could, then it would not be a "drag" for users to need to wait; such lightning-fast helper templates are possible because Lua-based cites (checking 610 parameter values) are formatted within 1/125 second. -Wikid77 (talk) 23:36, 20 October 2012 (UTC)

If an article gets a lot of views due to a recent news event

Suicide of Amanda Todd currently has 760,034 views and its existed for less than three days. Is it good to have things like this on Wikipedia, to bring people to Wikipedia, as well as to help bring attention to a serious problem in society? Its currently up for deletion, with some people saying no. Your opinions please. Dream Focus 07:49, 16 October 2012 (UTC)

  • "to help bring attention to a serious problem in society" is never a good reason to have an article. Having an article "to bring people to Wikipedia" isn't very convincing either, we should have articles because they are on a subject that fits our policies and guidelines, not for external reasons. We want to be a neutral encyclopedia, not a popular forum. Whether we should have that article or not is a fair discussion, but we should certainly not decide to keep it for either of the reasons you provide. Fram (talk) 09:03, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
    • I was actually just asking the founder of Wikipedia for his opinions, but since you posted yours, I'll respond. You say we're not a popular forum, but we cover things that are popular enough to be covered by the media, which is why we seem to have more articles about popular culture than anything else. And the guidelines were never voted on, just argued nonstop by whatever small number of people were around at the time, until one side gave up, and others got their way. Also, see WP:NOTLAW. Dream Focus 09:45, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
      • The answer hinges on how we define Wikipedia as an "encyclopedia". Since the entire concept of a print encyclopedia has changed over the last two decades, it is open to interpretations that may very well include topics such as the suicide of Amanda Todd. Viriditas (talk) 10:11, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
People read about it, they want to know what happened, and we tell them, based on reliable sources. That is appropriate. We can't hijack their eyeballs and turn them somewhere else, but maybe we can do something to put the problem in context - find overall statistics from some of the more obscure sources about the incident that describe the overall problem, for example. We have many degrees of freedom here, and deleting articles because someone doesn't like what they talk about is not the best of them. Wnt (talk) 16:35, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
It sounds like you wish to do original research for the article. IRWolfie- (talk) 22:44, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
We're one of the most viewed websites in the world, so the first point is not necessary, and "bringing attention to a serious problem in society" through our articles is very, very POV. In this case however, we aren't bringing the attention, Amanda Todd's suicide did. We are merely covering the event and aftermath. I am very often a person who !votes delete on news topics, but in this case, there is a difference between a widely covered news story, and a widely covered news story that causes a significant public debate. The former often adds little value in an encyclopedia, IMNSHO, but the latter does. Resolute 16:50, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Hits never has and never should be a criteria for keeping something. An article could get a million hits a day and still fail WP:NOT, or even WP:GNG. And consider the reverse: if we keep articles that get loads of hits, do we delete articles that get 50 hits or fewer per month? pbp 19:19, 18 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Yes, this is very true. Hits only have value if you are selling advertising on the basis of them. Hits merely show the level of public interest in a topic; they are not an indicator of how important or encyclopedic a topic is in the first place. Prioryman (talk) 19:23, 18 October 2012 (UTC)
  • It now has 1,742,959 views. I'm interested in what Jimbo has to say. Dream Focus 16:04, 21 October 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia and bullying

Jimbo, Wikipedia has a huge problem: bullying. Bullies are easy to recognize. For example, the cyber bully user:Tarc bullies this 15-year-old girl even in her death. Look how much sarcasm and stupidity there is in Tarc "delete" comment: "Delete - WP:ONEEVENT, and not likely to be repeated, hurr hurr. But seriously, this is a sort-of variation of missing white woman syndrome, the media's endless fascination with pretty white girls that have Bad Things(tm) happen to them, whether it is being spanked by a father, gone missing in Aruba, or off themselves with a bleach. Tarc (talk) 13:37, 16 October 2012 (UTC)" The Arbitration Committee is well aware that Tarc is a bully. You, Jimbo, are well aware that Tarc is a bully, and yet nobody does a thing to kick this bully off from the community. Jimbo, if nothing is done about bullying on Wikipedia,sooner or later somebody will commit suicide as Camelbinky predicted here. (talk) 15:16, 16 October 2012 (UTC)

I've asked Tarc to edit his comment. I don't think your hyperbole is helpful here though. Also, do you have a history of conflict with Tarc that you'd like to mention? Mark Arsten (talk) 16:06, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Marc, I have never been bullied by user Tarc. (talk) 00:38, 17 October 2012 (UTC)
I responded to his arguments here. Yeah, the "hurr hurr" about a girl who committed suicide from cyberbullying was ... extraordinarily bad PR. But - trolling has its redeeming qualities. Ultimately, if our society's response is solely for people to run around decrying the injustice and asking for the photo creep to be caught and the cyber bullies punished, however emotionally appealing that response might be, the outcome is that we send kids the message that suicide "will make them all pay", and that could kill more people. People should have the right to the whole gamut of emotions here, both nice and nasty; but our editorial decisions should be based on correct interpretation of policy rather than sentiment. Wnt (talk) 16:26, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
Tarc always takes a jaded view towards things, and that isn't necessarily bad. Often I agree with him, and while I don't in this specific case, his crudely worded objection has some merit. Not enough to overcome the landslide of opinion in that AfD, but just enough not to dismiss out of hand. The big difference in this case, crystal balling as it may be, is that the national scope of this within Canada is likely to produce lasting change to the legal system. It has led to debates within Commons, while at least one province is already tabling improved laws. However, it is not unfair for one to wonder if there would have been so much interest had it not been a pretty white girl who was the victim of this torment? Resolute 16:43, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
Well first off, Camelbinky didn't predict suicide, he hoped that someone would would commit suicide in order to effect the change that he feels the Wikipedia needs to adopt, and he was soundly rebuked in that thread for expressing such a thing. Second, the "bully" rhetoric is something from the Mbz1 and Daniel Brandt school of harassment. They are charter members of the Tarc Fan Club, though this could always be pot-stirring from some of the junior members...A Nobody, Joehazelton, etc... Who knows. Third, I struck part of the original comment as requested, but the sentiment remains; people kill themselves all the time for a variety of reasons. Our society focuses on the young, the pretty, the supposedly innocent. Why doesn't Steven Good get an article? Why not Ashlynn Conner ? "Reporting what reliable sources say" shouldn't mean just being a bunch of lemmings every time they go into a feeding frenzy about a particular one. Tarc (talk) 18:15, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
WP:OTHERSTUFFEXISTS may be a bad reason to keep something, but WP:OTHERSTUFFDOESN'TEXIST is definitely a worse rationale for deletion. You're mentioning recent suicides and asking why we don't have an article. Maybe it's because nobody started one yet! Google gives just one result[1] for "Steven L. Good" (a different one than yours) - if it were up to me I'd put an article up now based on the two sources, but I know too well that without a few extra news sources I'm likely to have a jackal pack after me on AfD in no time. It's something I ought to do but just can't be bothered. Maybe someone else will. Wnt (talk) 20:13, 16 October 2012 (UTC)
Looks like this was a good time to update the peace dove.Peace dove.svg--Amadscientist (talk) 22:41, 16 October 2012 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Well, what Wikipedia seems to exist for seems at least to some at times (me, now) is as a venue for bullying, of the worst, nasty, horrible, suicide-inducing sort. From out-of-control longterm Wikipedia editors, many certified as Wikipedia administrators. I have recently reached the 100,000 edit mark reached by less than 200 wikipedia editors. The overwhelming issue, as I see it, for wikipedia, is how will wikipedia deal with long-term, harassing, nasty, evil wikipedia editors in its inner core of wp:ANI frequentors. I have personally been subject to long-term bullying (wp:harassment) while i have worked on pretty non-controversial topics of well-documented historic sites, and am at no risk personally of committing literal suicide and am not wishing to commit Wikipedia-suicide, but I have become attuned to motivations for suicide and have become attuned to theories about bullying, simply as a result of trying to understand the nasty, long-running, bullying-type attacks against me. I am about ready to write some "DO NOT EVER THINK ABOUT CONTRIBUTING TO WIKIPEDIA" type article aimed at academics, for publication outside of Wikipedia. It is a horrible environment, almost any professional would be crazy to get involved here, because there are no effective mechanisms to stop nasty, horribly, hate-filled long-run programs of attack, which eventually become (in my opinion) conflicts of interest: a long-run bullying attacker within wikipedia has to prove herself or himself correct in attacking a given target, so continues on any excuse whatsoever. That's my main experience with wikipedia. I have enjoyed contributing on non-controversial historic sites topics, but my main learning is about the difficulty of dealing with long-term committed sadistic bullies. --doncram 22:59, 16 October 2012 (UTC)

Bullying occurs in all walks of life, but in cyberspace it's so much easier. I suspect the biggest bullies are those who would be too afraid to say boo to a goose in "real life". If Wikipedia is is also prone to bullying (and why wouldn't it be) I could suggest setting up some type of specific page for the bullied to take their grievances. The problem being, if, as you are saying, admins are also prone to bullying, who is to man this page and arbitrate on the complaints. Who monitors those who run the place? Jonty Monty (talk) 23:24, 16 October 2012 (UTC)

Bullying happens a lot in Wikipedia. And it is mostly NOT by /via people violating the letter of policies; they quickly get whacked. It IS by people who know how to mis-use policies and guidelines and know how to work the wiki-system to conduct bullying. Some tweaks in the policies and guidelines would go a long way towards helping this. North8000 (talk) 23:30, 16 October 2012 (UTC)

@Doncram: That is a very interesting (and unfortunate) statement. Given your area of historical sites, it seems surprising. That article you mention could be eye-opening. Sorry, that's happened to you. Alanscottwalker (talk) 00:22, 17 October 2012 (UTC)

Since Doncram's statement seems to be getting taken at face value, let me interject a slightly different perspective. (Which I had hoped to withold, as this situation has been relatively calm of late.) His raison d'etre has been to create large numbers of very short articles on National Registered Historic Places (hence the high edit count) or list-type articles, e.g., "biographies" of architects which are mostly lists of the NRHPs they designed. These are generally created with a minimum of research and synthesis, which unfortunately has led to some editorial problems (e.g., assembling indiscriminate collections of information and resisting removal of the less relevant parts, merging the bios of two individuals, etc.) This, in turn, attracted intensive scrutiny of his contributions, and the antipathy between Doncram and the users scrutinizing his work has long since taken on a personal aspect. (This has been going on for years.) In Doncram's defense, it's not clear that any of his contributions are a prima facie policy violation—I can't imagine how we could specify a minimum amount of due diligence to create an article—and his actions have been subject to much more scrutiny and hostility, and judged more harshly, than the same contributions by an editor without a "history". On the other hand, he has, IMO, done a poor job of responding to the editorial concerns with his work and insists on viewing it solely through the prism of personal hostility. If academics are horrified by our treatment of a prolific producer of this sort of deathless prose...we'll just have to roll with the punches, I suppose. Choess (talk) 03:45, 18 October 2012 (UTC)
Uhm, no one has "edited" that article for prose since it was laid down in bare bones fashion with citations and infobox. WP:Sofixit would seem to apply, would it not? Alanscottwalker (talk) 00:33, 20 October 2012 (UTC)
"Bare bones" is rather generous for locutions like "It was built or has other significance in c. 1720 and in 1915," which suggests a Viagra spambot rather than a human being. (Or more precisely, a database dump.) But to answer your question, SOFIXIT tends to break down in the face of cleaning up after someone who, vide supra, has reached the 100,000 edit mark. My general impression—I would have to go back a ways and check diffs to be certain—is that many of the people Doncram claims to be bullying him for no reason are people who got frustrated with having to clean up his hasty work over and over again. And then you have Doncram actively resisting attempts to improve the quality of his articles. Choess (talk) 23:15, 20 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Thank you, everybody, for standing up against the bully, for not being afraid to confront the barking pitbull and for forcing him to remove at least some port of a very offensive comment. Also thank you for providing your input on bullying that is taking place on Wikipedia. (talk) 15:18, 17 October 2012 (UTC)
    • Excuse me Mbz1, I think you are a little confused. No one "stood up" to me, and certainly no one involved in any of this was a bully. What happened was two editors approached me and ASKED me to do something. Imagine that Mbz; editors who actually act like human beings who communicate their concerns in rational, adult terms. Not rand and rave, sending endless harassing e-mails to Jimbo or to Arbcom or to every admin who catches your eye, day after day. Remember, that is why you are now banned from as well; a sustained campaign of harassment against a wide range of people via e-mail and other back-door avenues such as meta and Commons. So, 2 editors asked me if I would edit something I said. And *gasp* I did. No drama, noo teeth-gnashing. All of this happened before I was ever aware of you posting, yet again, to Jimbo's talk page. Let me remind you again, you have no effect on any of the doings in this project. You never did before, and you never will in the future. Tarc (talk) 22:39, 17 October 2012 (UTC)
  • On the contrary, Mbz1 slightly inconvenienced me. And made me annoyed for whole hours at a time. Then I worked out that they were, yes, a bully. (And a few other things that I won't mention here.) In between that, they got themselves banned by bullying (or attempting to bully) a few dozen other people, and doing some other things. They thereby wasted nearly another thirty minutes of my time just reading about all that.
  • Quite why the previous arbcom (which looks very similar to the current arbcom, by the way) never had the guts to ban Mbz1 by motion when it became clear what Mbz1 was up to, I will never know. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 02:10, 21 October 2012 (UTC)

WMUK and Mounmouthshire County Council Memorandum of Understanding

File:Monmouthpedia MOU signatories page.jpg MOU signatories page wherein Roger Bamkin is identified as signing on behalf of WMUK.

Jimbo, you may recall a discussion about the WMUK and Mounmouthshire County Council Memorandum of Understanding (WMUK/MCC MOU for short) which started on your talk page earlier this month and continued in the comments section of the Signpost. The last word on it from WMUK Trustee John Byrne was that he had located an unsigned draft copy and that it was not publicly available. There have been discussions of this document's status on the WMUK mailing list and on the WMUK wiki but the status remains unclear, despite the fact that we have a video of it being signed in Monmouth by Roger Bamkin and others (File:Signing_of_memorandum_of_understanding.ogv). I was surprised, then, to find today that User:Ghmyrtle had added to Monmouthpedia a link to an MCC document which includes the MOU as an appendix. I had asked both Roger Bamkin and John Bryne about Roger's designation in that document, since he was already being paid by the MCC at that time. Roger replied that "I was identified as a member of the steering committee I believe". John told me that Roger was described as "Wikimedia UK Trustee and Steering Group representative". Looking at the MOU itself, one can see that this is correct, but what John neglected to mention is that this description is under the bold title WMUK (under Ashley Van Haeften, then WMUK Chair). The rest of the document is interesting as well, but the fact that Roger was signing as a representative of WMUK while being acting as a paid consultant to the MCC is why I bring this here. Jimbo, I think this takes things from merely looking bad to smelling bad as well. It's time to do something about this that is more than window dressing. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:38, 19 October 2012 (UTC)

I'm pleased to see that DC invited me to this post. WMUK and myself laid out very clearly in press releases, on the WMUK blog, board minutes, reports to the WMF that I was employed by Monmouthshire County Council whilst still a board member. I had offered my resignation but the board decided to keep me on as a board member and manage the COI. It is the boards duty to do what they think is best at the time and WMUK members at least were free to influence this decision. It may be that you have just discovered this information or that you think that we should have consulted you at the time. However this was an open process and I'm surprised that you were not aware of this information. Victuallers (talk) 14:00, 19 October 2012 (UTC)
The minutes from the Monmouthshire council meeting that DC has linked to above are interesting. According to the government, Wikimedia UK was pitching the Monmouth project as a great to leverage their tourism and advertising spending. According to the minutes: Work carried out by WikimediA UK shows that the advertising value equivalent of the press and comms generated is in the region of £2.12m."Dan Murphy (talk) 14:12, 19 October 2012 (UTC)
Roger, thanks for commenting here. You and John both replied to my question about how you were described with accurate answers, but it was not clear to me that you were signing the MOU on behalf of WMUK and not on behalf of Monmouthpedia. If the board was aware that you were signing this document in your role as a WMUK Trustee and not in your role as a consultant -- and they must have been aware -- I have no explanation for why they did not accept your resignation when offered. The fact that you were open about your dual role does not make it any less of a conflict of interest. I find it troubling that I (and others) have been asking about this document for weeks with responses that are evasive and vague, when it was apparently freely available elsewhere the whole time. Can you or someone from WMUK tell me who is on the "Steering Group", who is the WMUK "budget holder" for this project, and where I can find details of the WMUK/MCC meetings and reports that are part of the MOU? Thanks. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 21:55, 19 October 2012 (UTC)
Whatever we think of this draft, it sounds like a possible starting point for working out the wording for future MOUs with many other governments around the world, so it would be good to put the text on Meta. (Though I view provisions such as "Communications" skeptically) Question: who holds the copyright on it, and is it CC-released? Wnt (talk) 22:48, 19 October 2012 (UTC)
I have left a request for Jon Davies, CEO of WMUK, to comment on the accuracy of what has been said in this discussion. I will email him as well, to make certain he is aware of this discussion. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 18:03, 20 October 2012 (UTC)
Establishing the complete and correct answers to questions like this is exactly what the review commissioned by WMF and WMUK from an independent expert is intended to do, and now that review is getting underway (with an announcement to come shortly) I think we should wait for its conclusions. I gave all my personal recollection and knowledge on this issue the first time you asked. Johnbod (talk) 18:36, 20 October 2012 (UTC)
The independent review does not supersede the community's interests in these matters. As I understand it, WMUK has been involved with choosing the "independent" reviewer, WMUK will be represented at least in part by lawyers, and WMUK's board has had involvement in setting the terms of reference for this review. WMUK has established a history of stonewalling members of the community who have the audacity to question them. These are simple questions that should be easy for any Trustee to answer, if not from memory then by consulting their notes or their colleagues. If the independent reviewer will be asking the same questions, it is to your benefit to find those answers beforehand. Suggesting that the independent review in any way prevents you from answering legitimate questions is yet another indefensible excuse to simply avoid answering questions from the community. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 20:03, 20 October 2012 (UTC)
If they are a trustee of WMUK, their fiduciary duty is to that organization, not a "community." If they breached a fiduciary duty, it is a duty to that organization, not to this "community." In fact, it does not seem many of these WMUK governing discussions belong at EN:Wikipedia, which is a Project of a different organization. Alanscottwalker (talk) 00:17, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
Without the WMF's blessing, Wikimedia UK would not exist. The members of WMUK are largely, possibly entirely, people who edit the English-language Wikipedia. Monmouthpedia and Gibraltarpedia have had the largest impact (both positive and negative) on the English-language Wikipedia. I brought this here so that Jimbo would be aware that Roger Bamkin signed the Monmouthpedia MOU on behalf of WMUK. My hope is that new piece of information would prompt him to take action. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 02:38, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
What do you mean "blessing"? Regardless, WMF also has a separate website to discuss its governance issues. If WMUK is a membership organization, the members should discuss their membership stuff at its own website. If editors on EN:Wikipedia are breaching EN:Wikipedia policy, it does not matter how an outside group has governance issues or of what outside group editors are also members. In fact, all involved have a policy requirement on EN:Wikipedia to not import and pursue their off-en:wiki disagreements on EN:Wikipedia. Whatever this Roger Bamkin did "on behalf" of WMUK, he didn't do it "on behalf" of EN:Wikipedia. Alanscottwalker (talk) 10:46, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
By "blessing" I mean simply that Wikimedia UK cannot exist under that name without the agreement of the WMF. Both parties are subject to the Agreement between chapters and Wikimedia Foundation which is renewed annually. There is a separate agreement covering use of WMF trademarks which also applies. I understand your points about governance issues, but my concern here is that the Monmouthpedia and Gibraltarpedia projects have happened here, continue to happen here, and future projects like Chepstowpedia will happen here. I gave up on Meta long ago. I prefer to have these discussions here, and in as public a forum as possible. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 20:54, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
It looks terrible - disreputable. Who are these people and how do we get rid of them? Secretlondon (talk) 19:40, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
The projects current format attracts them and when you point it out they just do it more, thats what is happening at the moment, because users are objecting to the DYK promotion and the guidelines are so weak to not restrict clear promotional content, they are doing it more , - they will continue as much as possible until the guidelines are finally changed. - Youreallycan 20:07, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
Or do you mean elect a WMUK board who are in tune with the online community, Secretlondon? William Avery (talk) 20:16, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
I meant a WMUK that doesn't discredit the project. Secretlondon (talk) 20:20, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
Next scheduled vote is next June, but note some board members have two-year terms. William Avery (talk) 20:39, 21 October 2012 (UTC)

closing false accusations immediately

hey hello,

I was thinking.....

Users may fill bogus reports for one reason or another. When a report starts with unfounded accusations editors routinely try to make something of it. We lack a mechanism to get rid of such reports. The most simple example is the AFD that doesn't respect our notability guidelines. I would even like to see closing an AFD restricted to the motivations provided in the actual report. For example: My draft article was up for AFD because it was claimed to be a BLP violation. At this point I'm really not interested in other motivations to delete the article. I deserve to hear it was not a BLP violation and that should be the end of the AFD. Filling such a report doesn't consume the many hours my work did. (end of example) I think there would be nothing bad about requiring a valid report and limit dialog to the actual issues raised.

We can demand editors explain for the issues raised but it is not worth editor time if the report is completely bogus. When we do chose to have editors answer nonsense postings we already end up distracting them from the core mission. It seems terrible enough in it self, I don't see room for further speculation. It serves no purpose and editors really don't enjoy being subjected to it. Answering for just one offense you didn't commit is already not funny. If the report is a failure we shouldn't glorify it with comments. It might very well be that reason number 12 to ban the user is a valid motivation, this isn't guaranteed however. All the way up to 11 we are just harassing a productive editor.

It does happen in good faith as well but not all of the time. The productive editor may get the impression that these people are in charge of Wikipedia. This might not be far from the truth. When the report runs out of steam they just fill another bogus report and the show goes on and on. AKA "Charlie Bit My Finger – Again!"

Requiring a valid reason and limiting the moaning to the initial filling might not serve to punish this behavior but demanding a valid report would go a long way towards putting an end to intentional obstruction.

This is my favorite example out of hundreds: [2] In 30 sec I can see there are many hundreds of valid news sources for this topic in all languages. I bet some administrators could do it in 10 seconds. Then, in stead of deleting the AFD the page goes well into WP:SNOW. Then this happens: [3] And as if that wasn't enough, shortly after, the page was nominated for AFD again.

Besides from consuming time an invalid AFD can not be not refuted because there is nothing to refute. I have a lot of imagination but I cant imagine an administrator would need a whole week to see this AFD isn't going places. We simply don't have administrators who are that stupid.

Here is annother one:[4] Again it should take 30 seconds to see there are hundreds of news articles. There is no need to accumulate stupid remarks up to invoking the snowball. If the technology is real or not isn't a criteria part of the notability guidelines. Every admin knows this.

Updating a report with new evidence after people wrote comments is a closely related problem that would also be salved by not allowing updates. I've been told that I can update my comment when the text changes but that isn't a solution, my comments had comments and those had comments as well. Creative commons doesn't allow us to apply peoples comments to a different context. The reader is not informed about this process thus it offends the author. Common sense doesn't allow changing the context of a discussion and I don't think there is one country in the whole wide world where the law allows it.

Of course there are exceptions to this where organizing the page is desirable but in most cases it seems to me there shouldn't be any need for updates. Either the report contains enough information to take action or it doesn't. When it doesn't one can easily fill a new one. This will give us a nice clean page limited to the actual issues.

Believe me I've tried updating my comment. The first thing I noticed is that it is much to easy to make peoples replies say whatever you like if you can are forced to change the text they reply to.

Likewise, editors shouldn't be expected to monitor their own comments to see if they still say what they wanted to say. It is most counter productive. If there is any kind of report there already is a conflict between users. Forcing these users to doctor the meaning of the post below isn't going to help at all.

I thought it was quite ridiculous, I responded to an unsourced eruption of anger aimed at a user. This then changed into a properly sourced report without name calling. And there was my comment claiming there was no evidence, telling the user to calm down. It was completely out of place, I never even read the post above my comment. My comment shouldn't have been there. I was also told I should have waited until he was done writing the report. lol? It seems pretty obvious that no report should exist until it is finished? Why would wikipedia give me the opportunity to respond before that time? It would have been much better if the original rant was deleted right away. I could have spend my time on something that was worth it.

I wouldn't go as far as to propose guidelines, I wouldn't know where to begin to be honest. I just wanted to let you know how it looked to me. :) Maybe you have ideas.

Thanks for your time,

regards (talk) 15:53, 21 October 2012 (UTC)

It should be noted that many editors feel that articles like these give undue attention to fraudulent schemes and those promoting them. --Orange Mike | Talk 20:55, 21 October 2012 (UTC)

Hi I‘m From zh-classical

you're awesome --User:Benjamin Jiperus —Preceding undated comment added 22:13, 21 October 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you!

Special Barnstar Hires.png The Special Barnstar
You have achieved freedom without abuse and control without abuse. Edenapple (talk) 14:51, 22 October 2012 (UTC)

help in correcting bogus label

I've made several attempts to get a bogus label corrected on a photo, and various people keep correcting it back to the wrong info, so I am hoping you can fix this.

There is a photo of Jane Fonda and Robert Redford at:

used at least in Fonda's entry. The bad caption claims the man is Alan Light, apparently because Light posted some joke caption on the photo (on Flickr? I don't remember) saying it was Light.

Not only is it obviously Redford, but if you look up Light on the web, ex.:

he doesn't remotely look like the man in the photo.

It would be nice to get this correctly labeled and prevent future editors from mislabeling it back. Trudyjh (talk) 18:15, 22 October 2012 (UTC)

The label on the image says the author was Alan Light ... I see nothing saying it is Alan Light. The person in the photo sure isn't Redford. (✉→BWilkins←✎) 18:24, 22 October 2012 (UTC)
The source on Flickr states the image is of "Jane Fonda and me". The photo that Trudyjh is providing of "Alan Light" is clearly a different person, given the one on the Flickr account is a retired photographer, and the one in the photo Trudyjh has been an editor for Rolling Stones, Vibe, and Spin magazines. --- Barek (talkcontribs) - 18:33, 22 October 2012 (UTC)
On a secondary note: The Flickr source states for the license "Request to license Alan Light's photos via Getty Images" ... but on Commons, the image was tagged in 2007 by FlickreviewR as "Passed cc-by-2.0" ... are there logs available to confirm the image was once released more openly? --- Barek (talkcontribs) - 18:38, 22 October 2012 (UTC)
On commons that tag is our "legal check" that it was open at that timestamp. These licenses are irrevocable, so if hes changed it later it's old license is still valid. FlickreviewR is a bot that does those checks too, which is generally far more reliable than a person doing them. Either case, it means it was verified by someone considered trustworthy to state it was free on that date. — raekyt 05:03, 23 October 2012 (UTC)
Let me note -- this is not intended as a criticism -- that Trudy missed the most effective way of addressing a problem like this, which is to raise the issue on the talk page (Talk:Jane Fonda). I have now opened a discussion. Perhaps this can continue there? Looie496 (talk) 18:51, 22 October 2012 (UTC)
Followup: the discussion there has thoroughly settled the issue: the person shown is indeed Alan Light. Looie496 (talk) 19:16, 22 October 2012 (UTC)

Prem Rawat

Prem Rawat (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views)

Hi Jimbo. My view is that there is an ongoing 'BLP Zealosy' problem with the Prem Rawat article where no-one is apparently interested in tackling editors who remove long-standing criticism - except for me that is. I am royally outnumbered, only one impartial volunteer has commented so far, and even she has expressed reluctance about getting further involved. I'm only bringing this to your attention as 1) The article attracted negative publicity from having been judged as being ridiculously easily influenced by followers (one of whom became an Admin allegedly just so as he could rewrite the rulebook on BLPs to suit his agenda) 2) It's apparent that this imbalance is happening again. 3) I'd be grateful if you could send some heavyweight Wikipedians over here to do something other than just block people for the heated comments that have been flying around. We need people who are prepared to make skilled judgements about what is appropriate to include in this kind of BLP. Thanks PatW (talk) 13:02, 19 October 2012 (UTC)

I've been following this for some time, and I implore editors to get involved in this. While I'm used to untangling enormous messes, this is a bit to much for me to handle right now with everything else I'm working on (most notably the latest PC RfC). I intend to stay on this, but the article badly needs fresh eyes. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 13:29, 19 October 2012 (UTC)
I'd jump in, but someone would probably say that it was within several degrees of separation from Scientology. Very broadly banned, can't help. Waves. AndroidCat (talk) 22:29, 19 October 2012 (UTC)
Well you're in luck; I'm one of the regular AE admins, and as long as you don't edit anything comparing Prem Rawat to Scientology you're fine. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 18:42, 20 October 2012 (UTC)
Yes it would be enormously helpful if you and others could get involved. Wnt made a very constructive edit which was immediately reverted and yet no volunteer has yet started further discussion. How about you Jimbo? I recall the edit you made once was also instantly removed. PatW (talk) 09:37, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
Well, that's not 100% right about my edit, but in general I do agree that this and related articles need very close monitoring. I'm going to be quite busy this week (in California for WMF board meeting) but next week I'll finally be back home and back to normal, work-wise, and if there is a very specific and narrow issue that I could help with, then I'd love to be involved somehow. Mainly I think we need to raise the attention of editors who have no particular stake in the topic, either pro- or anti-, to just make sure we reflect sources accurately and with good editorial judgment.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:46, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
This shouldn't take too long. Two ex-employees out of Prem Rawat's estimated 50,000 following in the US gave an interview to UPI in 1979 in which they made defamatory claims about Rawat including that Rawat could orchestrate another Jonestown. That is orchestrate the murder/suicide of over 900 people. I think this is an "exceptional claim" and, according to WP:REDFLAG, needs to have "multiple high quality sources" other than just the unsubstantiated opinions of two ex-employees before being inserted into a BLP.Momento (talk) 20:46, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
As per Momento - and as per Jimmy - "Mainly I think we need to raise the attention of editors who have no particular stake in the topic, either pro- or anti" - User:PatW is an strongly opinionated, single interest contributor diff - opponent of the Prem Rawat topic. - boring boring boring - people that don't like someone notable come to wikipedia to portray them as negatively as possible and people that like someone notable come to wikipedia to portray them as positively as possible - lol - boring Youreallycan 20:55, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
Not that this is about me...but since you attack I'll defend myself. Wrong, I am not an opponent of the topic. That's ridiculous. I came to the article because I thought it was amazingly one-sided. I restricted myself to the TalkPage to oppose that. No more no less . I have no interest in portraying Rawat negatively except to include well-sourced criticism and some other less contentious historical information that was omitted. I would much prefer if more neutral people were involved. I can't wait to leave the article in the hands of others - but I have a strong ethical objection to a whitewash about a subject I have some knowledge of. Perhaps you'd rather I just quit. It's hard to take you seriously since you say you're 'bored' and 'laughing'. Nice. I totally agree with Jimbo that people who are neither pro nor anti need to get stuck in and sort the facts out in a fair manner. PatW (talk) 22:02, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
As Steven Zhang says below, this is very nuanced, and that's an oversimplification of what's going on. This is not a case of some hater foisting an agenda on an article, the content in question is very well sourced and well known; whether or not it belongs in isn't a matter of BLP, but of significance, and there are reasonable arguments for both sides here. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 02:47, 22 October 2012 (UTC)
Hi Jimmy. I've mediated this on-and-off for a few years, so I'll probably pick it up again. It's a sticky dispute that lacks fresh eyes as a result, but I suppose someone has to sort it out, and that will be me. Have fun at the board meeting (well, as much fun as is possible :)) Steven Zhang Help resolve disputes! 22:53, 21 October 2012 (UTC)
This issue can be resolved if it can be agreed that WP:VER "exceptional claims" was specifically formulated to cover this type of issue. And that is to provide a means to ensure that the outrageous slanders and simply untrue claims that people make against their enemies cannot be inserted into Wikipedia articles without "multiple high quality sources". It simply cannot be allowed that I can tell a reporter that "I think JW is capable of murder" and just because the local newspapers reports my accusation I can insert it into JW's BLP.Momento (talk) 05:57, 22 October 2012 (UTC)
With due respect to User:Steven Zhang whose enthusiasm is very welcome, I don't believe one person can sort this out. Historically this has proved insufficient. It really will take the co-operation and varied viewpoints of a good number of uninvolved editors. I believe what Momento says above is a Straw Man argument, notwithstanding that he has no evidence whatsoever that these newspaper reports, which he describes as"outrageous slanders", are "simply untrue". If anyone is seduced by this over-simplified summary of the problem - as I believe some uninvolved editors have indeed recently been - then I 'd suggest that is further good reason to get some more "fresh eyes" involved. PatW (talk)
Seems odd to me that someone can come to a new DRN page, close it and lose all the opening comments and stated reasons for dispute, making it hard for people who come there (as they have done from here) to clearly discern the nature of the dispute. Anyway, Steve Zhang has moved the discussion to Prem Rawat Talk.PatW (talk) 03:51, 23 October 2012 (UTC)
A simple google search revealed your off wiki involvement in anti Rawat ex premmie discussions - 23:03, 23 October 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Youreallycan (talkcontribs)
So what? Is there a law against criticising Rawat or something? Be my guest Google away as you will. I have nothing to hide. You didn't even sign your post BTW. PS. it's 'ex-premie' not 'premmie'. PatW (talk) 09:03, 24 October 2012 (UTC)'

Watchdog templates as Lua searches 183,000x faster

I have run several timing-tests, to rate the speed of string searches for improper words/phrases, using Lua script modules to check template parameters. The speed is amazing, estimated as "183,000x" times faster than the current string-searches allowed by Template:Str_find_max. I posted initial thoughts at wp:PUMPTECH, as the thread:

The Lua script tests, run on, scanned for 50 phrases in a string of 22,000 characters (about 35 paragraphs of text), passed as template parameter 1, looking for particular words in those 35 paragraphs. Now, I have created a prototype of a "watchdog template", to show some ideas of what phrases could be watched, in article text, all scanned within 1/10 second.

The prototype below, Template:Watchdog, currently uses the slow markup-based searches (limited to 6 searches of a paragraph of text, to avoid the template-size limits), but the prototype at least provides an example of issues to consider for grammar, rumors and omission of required words:

  • {{watchdog | required1 = experiment
    | John Doe (1900-1990) was an American [[nuclear physicist]] who developed anti-[[quantum]] theories. Born in Berlindorf, Texas, the town suspected he was a child-molester pervert. He was also an idiot. One expeeriment tested light speed between 2 mountain tops {{convert|7|km|mi|0}} apart. When he were awarded the Physics Prize of 1934, he didn't accept the award. }}

John Doe (1900-1990) was an American nuclear physicist who developed anti-quantum theories. Born in Berlindorf, Texas, the town suspected he was a child-molester pervert. He was also an idiot. One expeeriment tested light speed between 2 mountain tops 7 kilometres (4 mi) apart. When he were awarded the Physics Prize of 1934, he didn't accept the award.


      (no other warnings).

The above watchdog results were copied from the live template, as just the generated warnings, to avoid crashing this talk-page due to the searches nearing the template-size limits, as 2,048,000 bytes. With the quick, smaller Lua-based searches, then various articles could use multiple watchdog templates, in muliple sections (or skip some), depending on the text phrases which should, or should not, appear in each section of an article. For talk-pages, different watchdog templates could be used to pre-scan an edited post to look for typos. Those templates could also check a per-user watchdog-preferences file, for topics (or words) to please not mention on the talk-page. Even before saving a posted message, the user could be warned to avoid the subject. Things to ponder. -Wikid77 (talk) 11:08, 23 October 2012 (UTC)

Your "183,000 times faster" is comparing apples and oranges, comparing the time needed to scan a 20-character text with the time needed for a 22,000-character text. It often doesn't make a huge difference how long the text is (within certain limits of course), and speed may well be dependent on other aspects. The difference in text length changes a "166 times faster" into a "183,000 times faster", so it is quite a large contributing factor for your spectacular result. Do you have any results where the same text was tested? Fram (talk) 11:46, 23 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Mathematical comparisons compensate for time or size limits: Currently, the markup-based string-search templates have been limited to 500-character base strings, where they cannot match a word beginning in column 501, even though a string in template parameter 1 can contain over 160,000 characters (about 300 paragraphs of text). The underlying parser function, {padleft} was stopping at 500 characters. So, even the ability to match a word at 501 length is "infinitely" faster in the Lua-based string-search template. -Wikid77 14:03, 23 October 2012 (UTC)
  • The string-search templates exceed limits after 5-7 searches, but not Lua: Another timing issue, which prevents direct comparisons with Lua script, is the limit of 5-7 total searches of 400 characters, using the markup-based templates, whereas the Lua-module string-searches can be run over 500 times (internally), without hitting the template argument-size limit. -Wikid77 (talk) 18:53, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

Is Wikipedia going commercial?

"Soraya Field Fiorio, a 27-year-old entertainment-relations consultant who has a sideline in writing commissioned Wikipedia articles for musicians and writers. “Just like when I write press releases, clients say, ‘I want this. I don’t want that.’ So it’s really part of a promotional package,” she said. She charges $30 an hour to edit an existing article, and will write a page from scratch for around $250." (talk) 00:31, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

I can't tell if it's true or not. I think I remember hearing somewhere that Wikipedia will never be for profit or something. But I don't know. ~ihaveamac [talk|contribs] 01:21, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
There's a big distinction here, wikipedia = not for profit, but that doesn't mean people can't make a profit with wikipedia or it's data. The general consensus here is paid editing is tolerated so long as the editor is following all our rules, specifically takes in note WP:COI. Plenty of them are banned, plenty edit here very successfully. All depends on their intentions. — raekyt 01:37, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
There is no such "general consensus". There is a tiny minority of unethical people advocating loudly for that in every possible forum, trying to create the illusion of a consensus. It isn't working.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 16:13, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
As far as I'm aware there is no policy that strictly prohibits it... from my watching ANI the cases that come up sometimes there, is generally handled like I said, if they're not breaking any exiting policies not too much we can do. Maybe I'm unaware of something, happens. ;-) — raekyt 16:37, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
In a way, it shows what an uninteresting topic the person is writing about, you actually have to pay people to do it. Alanscottwalker (talk) 15:46, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
The usual axiom in science is that if the title of a paper is a question, the answer is "no". Because a question is more exciting than a negative statement. It appears the same principle applies to journalism - "Is Wikipedia going commercial?" generates more clicks than "Wikipedia is not going commercial." WilyD 15:59, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Some questions are not "yes-or-no" questions.
For "yes-or-no" questions, we can look for counterexamples.
Wavelength (talk) 16:21, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
  • On a related note, see Talk:Main_Page#James_Bond_overkill. Of course, that kind of product placement to back a new film/video game/song has been going on for many years now. Wnt (talk) 18:43, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

Independent review of Wikimedia UK

I just wanted people to be aware of this, because the issue has been discussed extensively here. I will be watching the issue closely and meeting with people at Wikimedia UK over the coming weeks.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:45, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

Here's a prediction: it'll suggest some token ways in which WMUK could improve their governance but will otherwise give them a clean bill of health. Appointing reviews like this is essentially a PR move. You don't appoint them if you think something is fundamentally wrong, you shut down the offending entity. The review isn't a bad thing - it keeps the media at bay - but I don't think people should expect anything particularly earth-shattering or surprising coming out of it. Prioryman (talk) 23:44, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Since the reviewer selected is a professional business consultant and not necessarily involved in legal or law-enforcement type investigations, the report likely will not be written in the style of an investigative report. Instead, I expect it will be written the way consultants usually write their reports, with a non-confrontational (such as not directly linking identified problems to individuals), polite, description of current business and operational practices followed by (hopefully) detailed recommendations. One question, Jimbo...consultants are expensive. Who is paying for this, the WMF or WMUK? Just curious. Cla68 (talk) 00:19, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
WMF are paying. You should also see the terms of reference, which are linked from the statement. Johnbod (talk) 00:23, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Thank you. Cla68 (talk) 00:40, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
"It will also aim to answer specific questions that arise on these topics." Good, because I have a couple of questions. ;) --Demiurge1000 (talk) 00:44, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
  • @ Jimbo. Kudos. Do try to find out if the government of Gibraltar or any entity subsidized by the government of Gibraltar are paying for junkets trips to Gibraltar for WMUK insiders. Sometimes paid compensation takes forms other than the writing of a check... Carrite (talk) 02:26, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Actually, once the consultant team is established, I recommend that WMUK/WMF publicize their contact info so people can communicate concerns to them such as you elucidated above. Cla68 (talk) 05:19, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

Commons is still broken - a reminder

Jimbo, do you recall User:Beta M? Beta M was globally banned after it was revealed on Commons that the user had been convicted of distributing child porn but several members of the Commons community (including admins) argued strenuously against banning him on Commons. With that in mind, please take a look at this deletion discussion for File:Alexander Ahimsa - Silly Kids in Toronto - 14 Fucking in the Stairwell.jpeg. The file was uploaded by User:Max Rebo Band User:Handcuffed, a prolific contributor of sexually-related content. At this point Commons admins User:Cirt and User:Mattbuck have predictably weighed in with "keep" votes and spurious arguments about the importance of these blurry snapshots. The origin of this image? A porn website run by none other than Beta M. Is it time to pull the plug? Delicious carbuncle (talk) 23:14, 23 October 2012 (UTC)

"Keep - easily the most useful doggy-style photos we have, in that it shows more than just genitalia." from User:Mattbuck
"Keep, certainly unique in depiction for position discussion and multiple angular figure display" - from User:Cirt.
News flash - these two editors (admins! no less) are essentially trolling Commons. How else can one make sense of "rationales" as ridiculous, idiotic and absurd as these?
As the kids say "you can't make this stuff up". Volunteer Marek  23:30, 23 October 2012 (UTC)
En Wiki users should stop uploading anything to Commons - I did ages ago - its out of project scope control - do not move anything from here to there - add - not commons/keep local to anything you upload here and tell all your friends to do the same - Youreallycan 23:38, 23 October 2012 (UTC)
Just because one discussion didn't go your way doesn't mean the whole project should be scrapped. Wikipedia has a lot of broken discussions too, if "me not agreeing with it" is a criterion. Traditionally, you're supposed to vote in these things if you have an opinion about it. Looking briefly at the picture, I don't see anything obviously interesting about it - it might run afoul of the Commons policy against "uploading random snapshots of you and your friends" unless there's some educational angle. But so? There's going to be some slop in AfD discussions voted by random volunteers, and its best if the errors are more often toward the keeping of material. If you don't vote now I suppose you'll end up nominating it again. Wnt (talk) 00:05, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Wnt, I have no idea to whom your remarks are addressed, or what "one discussion" you are talking about, but you're adding nothing useful to this discussion. In fact, I cannot recall an occasion on which you ever added anything useful to a discussion. Please stop trolling on Jimbo's talk page. Thanks. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 00:15, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Wnt - Random, Slop, and Errors are three words that stick out in your post - Youreallycan 00:22, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
User:Mattbuckis a disgrace to the project. No wonder with such administrators Commons is rapidly becoming a free porno site.-- (talk) 00:26, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Yay I'm famous! As for my comment, I stand by it - it is important to have photos of things, not just drawings and Grecian urns of them. -mattbuck (Talk) 14:54, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
How about photos where you know the people are of age, and happy for Wikimedia to host their image? Is that too much to ask? AndreasKolbe JN466 15:00, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Ahh yes, It has been a while since there was some really good crying about Commons, hasn't there? Please, do me the favour and don't presume to tell me which of Wikimedia's other projects I should or should not participate in. Resolute 00:30, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

I don't quite understand this, starting off with a story of some pedophile that "some" people at Commons thought should be unbanned in a plainly obvious attempt to poison the well then going off on another "OMG COMMONS HAS PORNO!" rant, it's pretty clear that Commons has a different mandate than Wikipedia, and just because it's not used in Wikipedia doesn't mean it shouldn't be on Commons. We also have this inconvenient rule WP:NOTCENSORED. There are some reasons why we shouldn't host an image, and maybe some good logical reasons why this particular image shouldn't be hosted (For one the guy looks like he's underage, and engaged in a sex act, and the image filename seems to indicate that too). But just saying it's "Out of Scope" or "Not used in Wikipedia" isn't a good enough reason for deleting on Commons. — raekyt 00:50, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

What about ? This image comes from the website of a convicted child porn distributor. Do you know these people are 18? Do you know whether they both consented to the upload, or are even aware of it? Do you care? AndreasKolbe JN466 01:12, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I'm not an authority on trying to estimate ages, but if you think that image is child porn, by all means, you should send mail to the Foundation and get immediate action to purge it entirely from the servers, not wait a month for an AfD to restrict it in the admins' private porno stash. But I very much doubt this is true. The site owner is fairly irrelevant - any Flickr uploader could be a pedophile, and the site owner is probably not the uploader. And it has nothing to do with the general "porn on Commons" issue. Wnt (talk) 01:30, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Clearly I said, that if there is an issue with underage, then it shouldn't even be a matter for debate if it should be deleted, but I didn't see that arguement in the deletion reasoning... If they're even PRESUMED to be MAYBE underage, it shouldn't even be a mater of debate, always better to be safe than sorry. As for "consent" if they're adults, I think that discussion has been had to death on Commons. — raekyt 01:33, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
What does that mean? Consent does not matter? What about ? And why would people keep sexual images if they have no idea whether the people shown are overage or not? There is a reason why there is a legal age record requirement. Why should Wikimedia host files that lack any reliable age documentation? AndreasKolbe JN466 01:56, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Then a deletion case should be made on that grounds, they're clearly in a private place (although I think trespassing from the source page it came from) and engaged in a private act, even though it's clear they're aware they're being photographed. I'm pretty sure you'd have to fight an uphill battle to delete every image on Commons of people without written consent that was taken in a private place... Also the argument could be made here though that if they could just walk into the building and have sex in it, then it could be argued it's public because it's accessible by the general public. If it was in a bedroom, maybe a different story, but in a building's stairwell... probably public place. — raekyt 02:07, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Everyone knows that Commons is chock full of porno - why would I waste my time pointing that out? The issue is not that we have enough porn images -- thank you very much -- but why we allow a small group of ideologues to stockpile still more porn images under the guise of NOTCENSORED™. "Out of scope" is a good enough reason for deleting images at Commons. I'm all for having a range of images that can be used to illustrate penis, but surely something has gone very wrong when we have over 1,000 penis images (according to a consultant's report to the WMF)? The connections between the failure to ban Beta M on Commons and deletion discussions about sexual imagery should be apparent to anyone who takes a look at the participants. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 01:24, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
(edit conflict) I meant it is worded as if to poison the well. I do agree that there comes a point when no more pictures of a penis would be helpful, but the line between Porn and Art isn't always clearly defined as is the line between uneducational and educational. I think it's a silly argument, if we have 100 or 1000 or a million images of penises it shouldn't really matter. It's if we accept that we can have penis pictures, then we should have them. There's an argument that Commons then shouldn't become "show the world your penis" website where every male uploads a picture of his package, but who draws the line of where "enough" is? — raekyt 01:33, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
That particular well is already toxic and I didn't make the connection spuriously. I accept that we should have penis pictures. We have penis pictures. We should not have an unlimited number of penis pictures. Asking where we should draw the line is a fair question, but it assumes that everyone agrees that there is a line. A small group of Commons editors and admins not only act as though there is no limit, they seem to be fighting the deletion of any sexual imagery as if each deleted image is an affront to free speech. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 01:54, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I don't agree that there is necessarily a line, I can agree that an argument, maybe even a good one, can be made for a line, but I can also see the converse being true. — raekyt 01:55, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I assume, DC, you are referring to people such as myself. I will have you know that I do, from time to time, nominate sexuality images for deletion, or vote against them at DR. But I am, pretty much, an inclusionist - if it might be useful, keep it. After all, deleting it won't save any space on the servers, since it's still visible, just not to non-admins. -mattbuck (Talk) 14:59, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Matt, while I have your attention, would you mind deleting, sorry, hiding from public view the images listed here and any other images by Axxelaxxel? I've just tagged another copyvio uploaded here by the same user (as User:Kaustubh 88). Thanks! Delicious carbuncle (talk) 15:16, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Yes check.svg Done -mattbuck (Talk) 17:04, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Actually, X mark.svg Not done. I asked for all of their uploads to be deleted and made a point of doing so as well in the deletion discussion. You missed File:Circumcised penis - flaccid.jpg, File:Male anus close up.jpg, and File:Female perineal area.jpg. The underwear images were not only copyvios but at least one of them was altered in such a way as to make finding the source more difficult. The reasonable assumption is that any images uploaded by this user are copyvios. The sensible course of action would be a hard block of this user to prevent more sockpuppets uploading more copyvio material. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:48, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Ok, I deleted those as copyvios just now - Alison 04:40, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Thanks, Alison. I'm sure it was just an oversight on Matt's part. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 14:45, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
  • There is no legitimate reason to retain such an image in a Wikimedia project other than to a) spite those who wish to clean Commons up or b) serve their own prurient interests. Tarc (talk) 12:36, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    You don't think someone might have need of a freely licensed sex image which shows more than just genitalia? -mattbuck (Talk) 14:59, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    Need no, want yes. Only in death does duty end (talk) 15:02, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    We don't editorialise about what other people may find necessary. How would you feel if we came along to article you edit, and decided that an image on it was unnecessary and so deleted it? Need is subjective. -mattbuck (Talk) 17:04, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    What about compliance with legal age record requirements? In the absence of that, how do you know both people are not underage? How do you know that e.g. the couple haven't broken up, and the boyfriend is posting this to harass her? According to the WMF resolution, you need subject consent. You don't have it, do you? So why do you vote Keep? AndreasKolbe JN466 15:06, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    For fuck's sake Matt, we're talking about a pair of grainy phonecam images here. Why don't you stop using Commons as a replica of Reddit's /r/jailbait forum? Tarc (talk) 15:36, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    If we had better photo, the quality might be a reason for deletion, but we don't, so it isn't. -mattbuck (Talk) 17:04, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    So it is really within the Commons' mission to document every possible angle of every possible sex position with every type of participant? You can't take what is in commons:Category:Doggy style positions and say "that's good, we don't need your shitty cellphone pic" ? Tarc (talk) 22:00, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
    I didn't say that was the mission, but the mission is to provide a wide range of media. Having deleted these two images, the only photos of this act we now possess are either
    1. Joke pictures
    2. Focussed entirely on the genitals
    All other images are drawings, urns, etc. That's not providing a wide range, it's quite laughably poor in fact - the one thing that you're most likely to want is the one thing you can't get. -mattbuck (Talk) 23:31, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
In that case, if we have tons of other images which are joke pictures or focussed on the genitals, shouldn't they be deleted instead? If this picture was really better than the other ones, then all the other ones are redundant and they should go instead. Ken Arromdee (talk) 16:01, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
  • "Silly Kids in Toronto -14 Fucking in a Stairwell": The likelihood is that 14 is the age and that these "kids" are not of age. On those grounds alone, this photo ought to go. Bielle (talk) 17:21, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
  • I agree that the photo ought to go, but the assertion that 14 is the age is clearly wrong. The previous photo in the gallery that this image came from is called "Silly Kids in Toronto - 13 Keepin' Cool with Coconut Water" and the one after it is numbered 15 in the filename. It's clearly related to the sequence of the images, not the ages of the subjects. Prioryman (talk) 17:26, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

FWIW, the images have been deleted - not that it will stop the arguing here, I suspect... Prioryman (talk) 23:38, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

I think someone here once called someone a "scoundrel" for discussing an issue here. As this thread shows, however, in order to bring enough attention to help assuage an issue, sometimes it is necessary to use this forum. Cla68 (talk) 05:17, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

Saudi Arabia partnership and censorship

Hi Jimmy,

did you have time to investigate this matter? Are you happy or not?

-- (talk) 18:27, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

I've learned a great deal more. I am happy about it now. I will report fuller when I have time, but I'm at a Wikimedia board meeting now... probably early next week, although if I get a spare moment, maybe later today.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 18:40, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. -- (talk) 19:15, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

Possibility of admin abuse

Hi, sorry to disturb you with this, but I consider that you are supreme authority in Wikipedia and that only you can solve this problem (if you have free time and will to do it, of course).

You should see this:

There is an long term dispute of two Croatian users (DIREKTOR and Peacemaker67) with various Serbian users about Serbia-related topics and admins involved in this always impose topic bans for Serbia-related topics to Serbian users (myself included), while two Croatian users are allowed to write about Serbia what ever they want. So I think that admins involved in this (and same admins are always involved) are biased and that they favor Croatian side. Due to history of bad relations between Serbs and Croats, it is unbelievable that one can think that Croatian users are always correct and NPOV when they write about Serbia and that all Serbian users who oppose them are always wrong.

So, it would be nice that you check is there admin abuse in this case and to check are these admins biased or incompetent to deal with this situation. Thank you very much. PANONIAN 05:47, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

And I would say that especially problematic admins are Lothar von Richthofen, EdJohnston and Future Perfect at Sunrise. PANONIAN 06:02, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

Could a person educate himself by reading Wikipedia?

Democratic Senator John Kerry does not think so. Kerry sarcastically calls Romney "the Wikipedia candidate", and "characterizes Mitt Romney’s lack of knowledge about foreign policy as scary". I'm interested what Jimbo Wales could tell Senator John Kerry 2 prove he's wrong? (talk) 04:18, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

You missed the point. In Kerry's opinion, Romney's positions are as changeable as a Wikipedia page is, and that one must drill down to see if the citations support what the article claims, or if Romney's words 2 weeks ago jibe what he is saying today, respectively. Tarc (talk) 04:28, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Kinda funny that Kerry, of all people, would say something like that; some of us, like me, remember 2004. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 05:32, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I don't think Romney would have said "Syria is Iran's only ally in the Arab world. It's their route to the sea." five times, then repeated it in a national debate, if he'd read Iran, or Syria for that matter. Wnt (talk) 13:18, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
It entirely depends on the version of the article he happens to view at a given time; recall the recent case of the UAE's soccer team nickname, which was up for 3 weeks. Tarc (talk) 13:31, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
ROFL. We really should write up an instruction guide on how to read Wikipedia, which involves actually using those little blue superscripts that show up in every paragraph, looking at the history, and using a certain amount of common sense. Wnt (talk) 13:36, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

Kerry is just a power hungry ex-Nebraskan...he hasn't lived in Nebraska for years...reminds me of when Hillary Clinton got the Senate seat in NY and she'd never actually lived there...guess her example is worse. Kerry's opinion and $2.75 might buy somebody a coffee...MONGO 15:27, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

It helps to do some research before attempting wit; John Kerry != Bob Kerrey. Tarc (talk) 15:38, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Urr, yeah. Alanscottwalker (talk) 15:42, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Doink...oh...had my politicians screwed up...duh.MONGO 16:53, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Fixed links for politicians to see world maps: I have created the crucial map redirects for a safer world:
I should have created those links last year, then everyone running for U.S. President would already know, by now, where Syria and Iraq are located. Most articles do not have many maps, so each "Outline_of_..." article provides more pictures, and more basic data, in a fast concise format. -Wikid77 (talk) 19:38, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
The funny thing is that when I met Kerry a few years ago, he was very respectful and apparently a big fan of Wikipedia.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:29, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
One can respect (and use, and edit, and administer) Wikipedia, and still find somebody whose positions are as changeable as a Wikipedia article worthy of mockery! For that matter, anybody who blindly relies on Wikipedia alone, without doing further research or following the leads a good Wikipedia article provides, is not worthy of deep respect, much less the presidency. --Orange Mike | Talk 18:39, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
I believe what he meant was that to get to the sea they had to go through a friendly country and Iran was the ideologically friendly country. Mugginsx (talk) 18:55, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

Gibraltar, again

I've started another discussion at Wikipedia_talk:Did_you_know#Gibraltar, again, and have posted links to it at the Village Pump and at AN, as well as a note to WP:CENT. AndreasKolbe JN466 15:10, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

People write articles for free at their own free will. The project has encouraged locals to get involved with Wikipedia and if anything it offers more to the encyclopedia. I have offered many of my own photo material to the project. The benefit of the local sources inputting their efforts gives it that extra touch, who better can one find to provide such extensive knowledge? I feel that due to this project and its side effects that Wikipedia is now victimising Gibraltar and the GibraltarpediA project. Tonyevans gi (talk) 15:46, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

That is nonsense. First, no such decision has been taken; the RfC is currently at 37 vs 24 in favour of carrying on as before, i.e. up to one Gibraltarpedia hook a day on the main page. Secondly, even if a moratorium were to pass, not being granted a daily slot on the main page – to protect the reputation of the Wikipedia project overall – is hardly something that can justifiably be called "victimisation", is it. AndreasKolbe JN466 17:02, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I can imagine that if someone proposed a 5 year ban on some other specified area of the world - say, Israel, which has had plenty of scandals with behind-the-scenes efforts to subvert content on Wikipedia - then there very probably would be cries of "victimisation", yes. It doesn't make it OK just because the area in question happens to be a former part of a Muslim caliphate and a big ugly lump of rock that the Spanish government thinks shouldn't be controlled by the government desired by its inhabitants. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 17:17, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
If it comes to light that Wikipedians have been paid to use their influence at WP to promote anything onto the main page, be it Israel, the Democratic Party, Pepsi or the Vatican, the same reaction can be expected. It is both distracting and even dishonest to argue as if it were Gibraltar itself that is the problem. Product placement is the issue and has been since the initial discovery of the promises made by a Wikimedian (UK) trustee to enhance his personal financial gain. That the pressure is now being upheld by others does not lessen the problem. Bielle (talk) 17:35, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Just the fact that the idea has been entertained and even Jimmy Wales himself has been quoted as saying "I would recommend a total ban on them for 5 years" is enough to suggest that someone is willing to break the freedoms. Until DYKs became prominent there was little mention of the project globally. Even still the contract that was signed was not one of promotion but an advisory role[1] which helped encourage local Wikipedia users to take an interest in making public factual information about Gibraltar and the local area. Locals have provided the information, added their own media and produced their own articles. It'd be interesting to see if this were to happen to any other state, given the situation. Tonyevans gi (talk) 18:23, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

A recent story on El Reg pretty much says it all; 'If you had asked me "guess who's spamming DYK with excessive articles?" I would not have said Gibraltar - I would have immediately said the Indonesian Classic Film Society. Because there's something about an Indonesian / Dutch East Indian film or actor every day it seems. There's nothing sinister about this - it means that someone who's interested in Indoniesian film is doing a lot of article expansion and making regular submissions to DYK. Before Indonesian film it was Eurovision Song Contest entrants.

If Gibraltar are paying someone to promote the country via DYK, they should stop, not because it breaks the rules but because they're doing a rubbish job. I've noticed several trends over the years including the two above, and I haven't noticed Gibraltar items at all. Let alone been tempted to visit. 17 articles in a month occupies a tiny amount of space - DYK generally changes all its articles four times a day, meaning each item will last only 6 hours before disappearing forever, and there can be anything from 6-8 articles in each batch. So 17 out of 700-900 articles. Not very effective.'

But Indonesia qualifies as part of the so-called "Global South", so you're not up in arms at all, right Jimbo? --Demiurge1000 (talk) 00:16, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Oh, and to mention as well, Bamkin has recently stated publicly that articles no longer gain anything for the competition, by being accepted for DYK (so "promote the country via DYK" is slightly out of date). --Demiurge1000 (talk) 00:27, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Keep standing Jimbo !

Hi, I've read about the Gibraltar affair and I really admire your self-control. They're tring to set you up and flame in any possible way. Good job: silence is not only a good choice, it's also a matter of style. ZipoBibrok5x10^8 (talk) 12:27, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)#Pakistan

I remember bringing this up with you Jimmy a few years back and you said about organizing a cleanup. The problem has got too huge, 90% at least of Indian and Pakistan articles contain POV, unsourced poorly written material and ugly lists of schools and local "famous" taxi drivers. The average article is an embarrassment. Given the high computer useage in Indian and Pakistan and generally poor command of english and extremely slim chance sof the average IP/newbie writing something encyclopedic which is properly sourced I think we'd be better off incubating a high number of articles and only restoring once checked and put on watchlists. Anybody browse through the articles we have in the sub categories in Category:Populated places in Pakistan and Category:Populated places in India for instance and it'll have you shaking your head that we are hosting that sort of content. First I picked at random was Kulgam.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 20:47, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

First copyedit of Kulgam, expanded Karianwala: These Indo-Pak articles are common for the WP:GOCE editors, and are a known difficulty (aka "nightmare"), where editors try to just get the minimal coherence. Fixes can be done in 3 stages: first copyedit for 200-500 grammar issues, then cleanup names, and finally, consider sources which refute claims made in the text. The first edit of "Kulgam" had 230 changes, removing most wp:Peacock terms, yet some names were left lowercase, to consider place names versus lowercase foreign terms which need italics. However, for sanity, the first copyedit fixes the 200-500 grammar issues (+commas/dots). During a 3rd edit, then source footnotes can be added, or changed. When I expanded Pakistan article "Karianwala" (from text deleted as wp:OR March 2012), I paraphrased from sources, but remember, when in a rush, some copyvio text can be changed to a short quotation, so the re-stubbing of Karianwala was a sad case of over-deletion setting progress back a year. These articles require the "work" in why it is called "working on an encyclopedia". Estimate 1-2 hours to cleanup a non-stub town. -Wikid77 (talk) 23:13/00:24, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
As mentioned at that thread, I'm trying, and failing, to come up with any reason not to go through and delete these articles and make people restart from scratch. In many instances, a blank page would be much more helpful than someone writing about their BEAUTIFUL VILLAGE in ALL CAPS. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 20:59, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Now {fixcaps} can help edit those: After many such articles, I wrote the quick Template:Fixcaps to help reformat the all-caps text for easier editing. Just use {fixcaps} and reword the wp:Peacock terms:
  • {{fixcaps|/BEAUTIFUL /VILLAGE in ALL /^CAPS}} → Beautiful Village in all CAPS
Then replace the glowing terms as less exuberant, as "Scenic Village in all CAPS" or such! -Wikid77 (talk) 07:12, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
I tend to specialise in the Indic articles sphere and, yes, these things are dreadfully poor and not capable of being sourced in a meaningful manner except to co-ordinates (which may or may not be correct because the same village names often reappear in various parts of the countries). Alas, I've tended to hit the "populated places are inherently notable" argument, although I was involved when PMDrive1061 nuked a ton of Indian village articles last year. It is a real problem but I don't know what the answer is other than dedicated clean ups, which (in the case of caste/clan articles) have so far taken me around 18 months and results in a phenomenal amount of fighting, SPIs, semi-protections etc. - Sitush (talk) 21:06, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Isn't this part of what Wikiprojects do? There seem to be active Wikiprojects for both India and Pakistan. Neutron (talk) 21:13, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
The Pakistan one isn't really active, and WP:INDIA is swamped with all kinds of awful problems. I'm more than ready to start going the way of PMDrive1061; seems like a perfectly good time to invoke IAR. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 21:15, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Yeah Sitush, and we both want to see as extensive coverage of India and Pakistan as UK or USA as well, but the problem is too big, as you say 18 months just trying to sort out a portion of the clans which I also mentioned along with the villages and amongst the worst. I'm planning on a massive AFD proposal but I'll need help drawing it up. I genuinely believe that 90% of all articles on Pakistan and Indian are more problematic existing than if they were missing. I believe we have enough evidence that its not working to make at least an incubation of articles a valid option. Yes "places are inherently notable" argument is a problem but if we can provide enough example of all articles containing less than satisfactory content I think a lot of editors will see that this represents the toilet in the movie Trainspotting (film) of wikipedia's content. Cleanup and improvement is always the argument but given the lack of numbers working on thema and the sheer amount off watchlists I believe the problem needs to be blown up and new articles on the Indosphere strictly regulated. India and Pakistan are unique in regards to traffic.

@Neutron. Pakistan project only has one or two decent half decent editors, no more than the people commenting on this thread. You'd need several hundred to clear up the existing mess over at least a year or two and put all articles on watchlists to stop the germs infesting again. ♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 21:20, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

I have been very disappointed in the past to see people immediately making assumptions when content (sourced or not) mentions some prominent families in a village in Pakistan, and they immediately assume it's non-notable. We have no idea if it is or not. How people in a culture like theirs think of what is important in a town is probably different. They may well have sources available, now or in the future. The unsourced material is obviously prone to hoaxes, but usually it is respectfully written, not a real BLP problem. Why not just leave it alone and wait for someone to solidify the information? Wnt (talk) 21:42, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I'm not disputing notability of clans or villages. I'm just stating what is very obvious to the average visitor to the articles and that the average article really is a disgrace and would be better off incubated. Occasionally as you say it might be fairly well written but badly needing sourcing but even then often not verifiable.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 21:50, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I think we should recognize that there are places in the world where it's still 2001 on Wikipedia. This project didn't get started by people hacking away at anything that sounded a little bit off - it was started with very low standards, and people willing to improve things where they can. Wnt (talk) 22:06, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
Yes, and its now 2012 and the vast majority of Pakistan and India articles if anything have got worse since the articles were started, attracting POV, poorly written, unsourced, inappropriate material. Most of them in the current state are better off as short stubs.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 22:20, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
  • I'm curious, why is this posted at Jimbo's page? ~ GabeMc (talk|contribs) 22:36, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I don't know, but I should probably mention in a day or two, TopGun, Inlandmamba, and myself, are going to nominate Muhammed Ali Jinnah, which is a reasonably important Pakistan article, at FAC. So there is hope of bringing order from chaos.--Wehwalt (talk) 22:45, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I am not quite sure what your point is here, Wehwalt. Jinnah is certainly a subject worthy of much attention and quality writing etc but he bears no relation to the average Indo-Pak geographical/caste/clan stub etc, which is otherwise more often than not WP:PUFFERY or, less specifically, OED puffery. One high profile article among many thousands of utter crap does not an encyclopedia make. Although the situation was never great in my limited experience, it has deteriorated considerably since WMF decided to make their well-intentioned but hopelessly misguided "push" in India. As with any situation, some good can always be found and it is appreciated. But I can find more notability/more sources etc for the street on which I live - 30-ish houses than for most Indic "village" articles as currently presented. And mine is a typical Manchester terraced row of 1880s houses that really, really it would be mad for me to introduce as an article. Yes, systemic bias is an issue and there is a tradition of oral history, transliteration problems etc, but one of the core subtexts of that bias is the pride/POV etc in history and location that is common among the Indo-Pak contributors but rarely (imo) seems to amount to anything encyclopedic for the other 80% of the world's population.

I've not phrased the above very well and apologise in advance for that, but I stand by the guts of my statements. - Sitush (talk) 23:22, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

My hope is to have it be an example of what can be done, but I agree the articles on the wide spots in the mud in South India are a problem. Not sure if restricting article creation is the answer though.--Wehwalt (talk) 23:24, 24 October 2012 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but I'm smelling a strong stench of bias here. Pakistan has 180 million inhabitants. India has 1.2 billion. Britain has 60 million - 1/3 of Pakistan, 1/20 of India. What would make your blocks more notable than Indian towns? Because they're a poor country you call these "wide places in the mud"? They're still notable - even if Wikipedia, so far, for some funny reason, hasn't really made itself popular over there. Wnt (talk) 23:39, 24 October 2012 (UTC)

(od) There's a tradeoff here. Obviously you're not going to find reliable sources for small villages in India the way you are for villages in the UK. But that doesn't make it any the less important for us cover these villages to the extent possible using government documents (perhaps, heaven forbid, even primary ones) and whatever local language newspaper references we can find online. Some of the material may turn out to be puffery, and we should delete any such material, but I don't like the idea of wholesale deletion of articles merely because we can't fix them. This encyclopedia is meant to be a perpetual work in progress and if that means carrying some poorly sourced and possibly puffed up articles for a while, then so be it. Somewhere along the way everything ultimately gets fixed but that will only happen if we have material to fix in the first place. --regentspark (comment) 01:46, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

  • Consider progress on "Gurdwara" and similar: Please remember that some months ago, article "Gurdwara" was a rambling mess, and even though people sometimes still append more trivia, the article was edited to become an interesting summary of a typical Sikh place of worship. The same goes for those villages, and their economy, and the sights of interest. They can be easily edited to reach tolerable levels of content. -Wikid77 (talk) 07:12, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
That's not it at all; it's that articles on American and British hamlets/villages aren't written by people unable to string a decent English sentence together and have no idea what goes into an encyclopedia. I've never seen anything outside of Indo-Pak village articles that look as absolutely awful as, for instance, Jayya; if they're out there, I'm more than happy to zap those as well. But the unsourced piles of puffery and promotion like he aforementioned page make us look bad if we allow such unmitigated shit to indefinitely lay around and cause problems from the already severely strained people desperately trying to beat some sense into the area. Sometimes, when content is completely worthless (as is the case here) it's much easier to start over again, so we should do it. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 01:51, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Hmmm, are there really no generally accepted, even say encyclopedic, reference works on the Sub-Continent? It would seem that English speakers would have produced something on this area of the world in the last several centuries. Alanscottwalker (talk) 02:16, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

"I'm curious, why is this posted at Jimbo's page?" Jimmy once said he would contact his friend in Pakistan and try to organize a cleanup. I came here hoping he would still do so. Care to respond on this Jimbo? C'mon regentspark and wn, I'm not disputing notability, I want Pakistan and India to have the same coverage as UK and USA. The problem lies in the fact that as Blade says many visitors have problems with writing half decent sentences in English, all unsourced and usually plagued with POV and CAPITAL LETTERS. When thousands of articles are that awful they present a major problem for wikipedia, its just not good enough. Yes, we are a work in progress but the sheer amount needing cleanup and virtually all content in them wiped clean means we'd lose little by deleting/incubating the articles and making a list of those to restart with sources and with some control.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 09:27, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

I have taken a purely random Pakistan village stub, Batangi. It seems to be rather typical, with things like "[...]linked with it by an unmetalled road.", and "The people of the village are extremely hardy, simple, intelligent and brave. The unique example of their courage and determination is[...]". The second one I opened: Shawa. Yes, it has the ALL CAPS problem, with things like "the people of SHAWA are very keen to get higher education". Dastagir Colony contains many "famous" and "world famous" things apparently. These articles need some good solution, either massive cleanup or mass redirection probably. Fram (talk) 09:58, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

Neither Batangi nor Shawa are that hard to fix. Took me a minute to clean up Batangi. Of course there will be unsourced statements, there just aren't enough sources, so we have to use some judgement in deciding which ones to keep and which ones not to keep. For example, do we know for sure that there is a chinese takeaway in the English village of Bussage? Not really, but there it is along with Ram's Inn. --regentspark (comment) 14:03, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Just to step back a bit, I looked at the (old versions of) the articles given as (bad) example above, and I thought they were net positives even then. I mean, there's useful information in there. For instance, the passage "The people of the village [of Batangi] are extremely hardy, simple, intelligent and brave. The unique example of their courage and determination is the road connecting the village with Abbottabad City which they built on self help basis in 1983." tells me that there is probably a road connecting Batangi with Abbottabad, which was probably built around 1983. That is useful to know. Granted, the intelligent and brave stuff is just noise, and definitely should go (and I greatly appreciate those editors undertaking the Augean task of cleaning these articles up), but I'm not seeing these articles as being worse than nothing. Herostratus (talk) 15:06, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
I seriously don't understand how someone could think that the information that a road exists is worth the puffery. In fact, the road information is itself borderline, and I'd strip it out of most articles in most cases unless it were sourced (we are, after all, neither a directory nor a tourist site). And someone talked above about how the info isn't particularly bad because it isn't negative...well, I for one consider unsourced puffery to be about 80% as bad as unsourced criticism, especially since in some cases elevation of one group implies denigration of others. I'm not quite certain that tearing everything down is the right solution, but it should at least be considered. Qwyrxian (talk) 23:14, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Well, sure, I can explain. Let's assume that, for my purposes of researching Batangi, I want to know something about where it fits in the local communications net. In that case, information about its road connections is useful to me. In order to get that information, it is worth it to me to filter out the bits about intelligence and bravery. I don't see info such as transportation infrastructure as borderline. That its unsourced is an issue, true. These are different issues from the puffery, though. Herostratus (talk) 06:51, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
So, we now have a "cleaned" article, making all kinds of claims about the population and ethnic and caste aspects. Source? According to the 2007 election figures, only some 270 persons were voters for Batangi[11], which seems to include people from surrounding villages as well. On a population of 1000 for Batangi alone, this seems like a lot for a village which had in 1961 113 inhabitants[12]. Much of the information in the article can't be verified at all. Stubifying it to the bone seems to be the best solution. 08:26, 26 October 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Fram (talkcontribs)
Maybe someone can contact every editor in Category:Wikipedians in India and every editor in Category:Wikipedians in Pakistan, and help them to use correct English and to follow Wikipedia policies and guidelines. As a useful intermediate step, they might be encouraged to become participants in Wikipedia:WikiProject India and Wikipedia:WikiProject Pakistan, and to follow on their watchlists the respective talk pages, where participants can be helped to use correct English and to follow Wikipedia policies and guidelines. See also: Category:Wikipedians in Bangladesh and Wikipedia:WikiProject Bangladesh; Category:Wikipedians in Nepal and Wikipedia:WikiProject Nepal; and Category:Wikipedians in Sri Lanka and Wikipedia:WikiProject Sri Lanka.
Wavelength (talk) 16:14, 25 October 2012 (UTC) and 16:50, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
  • Redirected "mohala" to expand as a mohalla: As typical for articles on emerging subjects, for a Pakistan town, there was the word "mohala" which Google suggested, "Did you mean: mohalla?" and so I created a redirect. As with the Sikh place of worship, "gurdwara", last year, some cultural terms are revealed to be major words once the meaning is better understood. Please note, the lack of quality text is not just in village articles, but occurs in many areas, depending on the level of expertise, where experts in a subject have been just as appalled about missing details (in "Duns Scotus" or "Abelard"), as compared to casual readers appalled that village articles contain sparse data. Consider the terms "carriage bolt" (in article "screw") or "unit testing" or "simoom" (was a stub for years), which were once hollow topics, with limited details during the first 5 years of Wikipedia. Check again, in another 5 years, for the level of details about the Pakistan towns. The more readable those articles become, the more likely they will be expanded. -Wikid77 (talk) 21:03, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

COPPA rules

This seems like something we should be looking at. Any help with analysis of what is going on would be appreciated.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:34, 25 October 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia has an article "Children's Online Privacy Protection Act".
Wavelength (talk) 23:18, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
I can't see how those changes would be upheld in court... another case of politicians who haven't a clue what the internet is and probably has never used it before trying to make rules and regulations for it.. i think. lol. — raekyt 02:39, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
To add, it says they're thinking of expanding the "information" you can't collect from children to include IP addresses, this is a huge issue. Every webserver in existence logs hits with IP addresses, as a backend server log thing. That coupled with any website that accepts user-input and stores it logs that with IP addresses... If that rule is implemented and upheld in court every webserver will need special rules or special versions written that doesn't log the initial hits IP address, presents every user with a COPPA notice before they can proceed, and not log any entry hits to the COPPA page, which is pretty much unfeasible and would break the internet as we know it. — raekyt 02:49, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
It's not a big deal. If I'm reading the proposed changes correctly, it wouldn't affect us. They're not substantially changing the definition of "website aimed a children" for our purposes (Wikipedia could possibly be considered to host "content aimed at children" (defined as "persons 12 and under" for these purposes), because it's a general-purpose encyclopedia, and general-purpose encyclopedias have always been read by clever 11 and 12 year olds and we should expect this. However, we are not considered a "website directed at children" since we are mainly targeted at older people. Disney is beating the drum for websites like ours to continue treating as children only persons who self-identify as children, and "The Commission finds merit it Disney's suggestion" (ya think?).
(As an aside, our continuing to promote initiatives aimed at promoting Wikipedia in schools which could include middle schools is (among other bad things) foolish and dangerous as it exposes us to being defined as being a website directed at children and we should cut it out, in my opinion. I suppose we won't, though.)
If we were defined as a "website directed at children" the we could no longer "collect" IP address (if all this goes through). Editing could probably be considered an integral part of using the Wikipedia, and when you edit we do collect (and publish!) your IP address (if you're not signed into an account).
(A case could be made that certain articles (My Little Pony or whatever) constitute a "section of the website directed at children", in which case we'd have to handle those differently. But that's always been true, and IMO that'd be a very weak case (because while My Little Pony is about a subject that might interest children, the article itself is not pitched toward children specifically), although you never know. But if it such an assertion did carry, we'd have to no longer collect and publish IP addresses for edits to those articles, probably, which in practice would probably mean for the whole site I guess, which would be huge deal.)
There's a bunch of other stuff, but I think that the issue continues to be that we must never allow anyone who self-identifies as 12 or under to publish any information, or edit under a username, that could be used to track that person in real life. Which de facto we do now. So I'm not seeing anything to worry about. Herostratus (talk) 03:55, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I believe that page is written by bronies - what that's a blue link? Rich Farmbrough, 02:02, 28 October 2012 (UTC).
Wikipedia has Category:Children's websites, and apparently those rules would apply to (not necessarily only) those websites.
Wavelength (talk) 16:07, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I would say there is nothing to worry about when it comes to wikipedia, the proposed rule operates on a per site basis, the only hook that could reasonably catch Wikipedia is the posibility that Wikipedia may attract a disporportionate number of children under 13 relative to the general population, but as we don't require age data we don't know, and without knowing, the rule doesn't seem to apply. The whole thing is stupid, and if it somehow did apply to wikipedia would be blatantly unconstitutional, but I think the risk there is small. As far as school outreach, I doubt it would result in so many under 13 editors as to be a problem. Monty845 20:23, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
We do have b:Wikijunior which is aimed at kids up to 12. (talk) 04:34, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Hmmm well Wikijunior could be a potential problem then. It could reasonably be considered to be a "section of a website directed at children". (I'm not familiar with Wikibooks and maybe it's mainly directed at parents and teachers, and/or -- for editing purposes, where the IP addresses are collected and published -- at adults generally). Not being any kind of expert on these matters, I wonder if we could just ignore this unless and until an order to stop doing that came through, at which time we could take down Wikijunior (only; not all of Wikibooks) while we figured out what to do. Herostratus (talk) 00:38, 28 October 2012 (UTC)

Italian wikipedia proposed blackout again

Bill #3491. Same old thing Italian Senate is proposing, discussing law on removal of content per request, big message on it wiki.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 17:03, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

Here is a link to Wikipedia, l'enciclopedia libera (version of 15:39, 12 October 2012). The shortcut is it: from English Wikipedia. Here is a copy of the English version of the public notice.

Discussion (in Italian)
Dear reader,

Yet again, the independence of the Italian Wikipedia is under threat.

The Italian Senate is discussing a bill on defamation (Bill #3491). Should the bill be approved, it will require all websites — including Wikipedia — to change or remove content merely upon request from anybody who believes they have been defamed or that their privacy has been violated. It would need to be acted upon regardless of the validity of the complaint. Offenders could be prosecuted and fined up to 100,000 euro. Similar legislation has been unsuccessfully proposed in the past, but now its approval seems imminent.

Wikipedia recognizes the right of every individual to safeguard his reputation, and Wikipedia volunteers work daily to uphold that right. However, if this bill were to be approved, any statement in any article of Wikipedia could face mandatory deletion, on demand, in spite of being true.

This requirement would undermine Wikipedia's fundamental principles, it would be an unacceptable limitation to its independence, and an intimidating threat to the ongoing work of the 15 million volunteers all around the world. They would have to shy away from articles about certain topics or people, "just not to get into any trouble".

Wikipedia is the greatest collective work in the history of mankind.

In the last twelve years, Wikipedia has become part of the daily habits of millions of web users looking for a good source of knowledge, free of charge, and founded on the principles of neutrality and freedom of speech.

The Italian Wikipedia has nearly one million articles which get 16 million views a day, but this law could black them all out, forever.

The Free Encyclopedia is a monument to human knowledge, and a monument of human knowledge. We will not allow its destruction.
Wavelength (talk) 19:46, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
At this rate, we'll be going out whenever the wharfies do, in sympathy.--Wehwalt (talk) 20:01, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Here are links to related archived discussions.
Wavelength (talk) 23:11, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Here is a permanent link to the page with the English version of the 2012 public notice.
Wavelength (talk) 15:38, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Before we all get worked up, do we have any indication how much Google is donating this year? John lilburne (talk) 16:42, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Not enough to get content contributors JSTOR, apparently. Perhaps we should black out until Google gives us more money? Just as good a reason as last time.--Wehwalt (talk) 18:17, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
The WMF could buy JSTOR access at full price with the change from the sofa in the lounge. From here: JSTOR's price calculator it looks like full-run access for all journal collections for nonprofit institutions is about $120,000 per year. JSTOR seems to charge for Canadian, US, and international access separately. That's about $360,000 per year, then, worst case, less than one percent of the WMF's projected budget for this fiscal year. Why don't they just buy it? — alf laylah wa laylah (talk) 18:35, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
They were trying to get a grant last I heard. Penny wise and pound foolish. I have JSTOR through a local library, and it is a very good resource. It's like WMF just can't get past the "crowdsource" model, which I see Jimbo still uses in requesting info about COPPA elsewhere on this page. A few resources tossed in the right direction can yield a lot more in the way of article quality which they supposedly wring their hands about. All I know is that TCO and I did a lot of work last November in finding out how it could be done (cheaper than what you mention thoguh I'd have to look up our research), kept Philippe informed, and he asked us to keep quiet about it so he could work on it, and it got hijacked apparently to the Communications Committee (I know Raul654 (inactive) was involved with that) and nothing's happened in months.--Wehwalt (talk) 21:53, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Gibraltar hooks RfC

The Gibraltar hooks discussion is now an RfC:

Media coverage:

Huh. I wasn't aware that I had been silent.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:35, 25 October 2012 (UTC)
Well, the thread on the resumption of the Gibraltarpedia hooks was on your talk page for a week. You didn't comment on it, even though you commented on other threads. You were silent on it, until a journalist called the WMF about it to obtain an official statement. AndreasKolbe JN466 16:24, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I had already spoken about the whole situation. It's not "silence" to not comment on every little detail.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:06, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

This has really been bothering me of late so I'm going to get it off my chest, I'm being honest. I understand your concern about promotions and that it is wrong to think that wikipedia is somehow being used for promotional gain and that you see a need to send a message to the media that this should be strongly punished and discouraged, but I'm being honest that you've upset me with your attitude towards the people who are contributing to Gibraltar articles for free and are actually producing a lot of good work. Articles like Moorish Gibraltar, Trafalgar Cemetery and Synagogues of Gibraltar, how can you stand there and attack those editors and label them "ludicrous" for producing this content for wikipedia? Ludicrous that they are contributing it for free in such a hostile environment maybe. Regardless of what might have been reported between the government and Victuallers, a number of contributors to Gibraltar articles, myself included, are motivated by a project which attempts to provide a sound coverage of a place and believe the wiki city concept is a fantastic development and would like to see it replicated all over the world. If the front page of wikipedia is being used for "business" its a misguided one. The number of people who even notice DYK much less visit and read the articles represent a tiny percentage of daily visitors to the main page. A number of contributors, especially AC, Gibmetal and Prioryman, and myself have put considerable effort into producing articles which we believe improve wikipedia as a resource in the quest for providing knowledge long term, regardless of DYK. We work hard all year producing for this website, never see a cent, never even an annual email from you and the foundation thanking us for our efforts and you treat us like this. It bothers me that you clearly have no regard or respect for the contributors of wikipedia and are more interested in politics and your reputation and political/civil correctness than you are content. If you actually read some of these articles you'd see they are actually a positive thing for wikipedia and a net plus and given the fact that they are neutral, meet guidelines and encyclopedic. You've attacked these articles appearing as DYK to the media which is fair enough, I can see you feel it sends out a wrong message that wikipedia must not be manipulated. But at least acknowledge the effort that has been put into articles by contributors who are innocent of any "agreement" and believe it or not working for free and are actually increasing the value to wikipedia as a resource.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 09:21, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

"you've upset me with your attitude twoards the people who are contributing to the Gibraltar articles for free" - I have said nothing negative or even potentially negative about them, so I don't know what you mean. I thank people for their efforts all the time, I speak glowingly of our amazing community of contributors at every possible opportunity. Do you really want an annual form email from the Foundation? I don't see how that would even begin to express the genuine admiration that the people at the Foundation have for the community, and which is better expressed in a thousand much stronger ways all the time through their work to support us.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:06, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

Yes, absolutely. The impression I and quite a few people I know is that we don't feel really personally appreciated by you or the foundation for what we do, and as individuals. We admire what you did with starting the project and what is done to keep out advert and commercial enterprises but we in return keep the project developing and growing each year. You have often identified the small "core" team of editors who perform the bulk of the edits. I never see any general interaction with them/us aside from those who can attend wikimania or seminars/media wiki or comment here. A thankyou from you and the foundation personally sent out by a bot to our email address annually would make a difference I think. An email from you and the foundation, a personal newsletter at the end of the year saying about what happened in a given year, what has grown across wikiprojects and new schemes involved and a "thankyou for your part in this, keep up the editing in the new year, have a great 2013" sort of thing at the end of each year would improve how you and the foundation are perceived and make us feel more welcome. I'm not sure others here agree on this but I know many who do; I tend to view the foundation and the bureacracy on wikipedia as polarized from the content contributors, above us all, and given the perception I've seen from certain individuals seem to resent the way they don't feel supported and encouraged by the foundation to write for wikipedia and how they are powerless often to make good proposals. I want to see relations between the foundation and the more prolific content contributors on wikipedia improve, I feel as if the wiki politicians/bureacrats are more highly regarded than those who actually produce the goods on here and why we are really here.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 20:44, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Some of the articles have had sketchy sourcing, but otherwise I don't think anyone has really criticized the article writers. The problem is the selling of access to the main page, including stacking the DYK approval votes in order to get the articles approved and moved up in the line. Two different things. Cla68 (talk) 09:28, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
There has been remarkably little focus on the editors involved considering the circumstances Dr Blofeld. Likewise the quality of the articles has rarely come up. Its almost entirely been about the appearance that access to the WP main page has been sold. Where it has touched on editors, its mostly been confined to those who have either declared (or been found to have) a financial interest, or who have been evasive about their trips to Gibraltar. The remainder of the hard-working editors - the worst that could be levied at them is they are unwitting pawns for Bamkin and his close associates at WMUK who have picked up the slack since he stopped. Only in death does duty end (talk) 09:36, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Over the million or so people who visit english wikipedia main page daily you'd be lucky if 1500 visit any one of the DYKs. Its merely the first step in the quest for improving content. The impression I've got is that Jimmy detests the fact that these articles are being produced regardless of DYKs and the fact that none of them contain "promotional material" and are largely historical in content and well researched and sourced of decent quality. As I say I understand why he does because he thinks its wrong that any wikipedia article or project should be connected to somebody else's gain, but I think it is wrong to discourage editors from improving wikipedia as a resource which these articles clearly do. I'd like to greater community/wiki involvement around the world and encourage exciting new projects to improve content and bring in new editors. Its only ludicrous because its a focus on Gibraltar only, if everywhere else was thrown in we'd develop massively as a resource. I've not contributed to many Gibraltar articles myself, only one in fact since the scandal emerged but I think you'd be right Only in death that there are more innocent people involved in production than you might think who are actually producing encyclopedic content which is beneficial in the long term. I appreciate that its a difficult situation but I've not been impressed by the way the feelings of the "unwitting pawns" have been treated over this.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 09:37, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
"The impression I've got is that Jimmy detests the fact that these articles are being produced regardless of DYKs and the fact that none of them contain "promotional material" and are largely historical in content and well researched and sourced of decent quality. " - It's easy to get any kind of impression you want if you simply make it up out of thin air. I have said nothing that could be even remotely construed as "detesting the fact that these articles are being produced".--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:08, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
So if I was to fully expand the Algeciras article you'd welcome it, but you wouldn't welcome it as a DYK because it lies within Gibraltarpedia territory? You're confusing me. You called for a 5 year ban on articles related to Gibraltar didn't you?♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 20:51, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
I think your perception of Jimmys comments is way off here. Gibraltar hired PR agents who made promises backed by access to WP as a marketing tool. If a competition was run merely to 'create' good articles on Gibraltar, no one would have really batted an eyelid. Jimmy would probably be the first to say more high quality and well sourced articles is a good thing. The existance of the articles has never been an issue. Its that the articles were being used as a marketing push. You seem to be very angry at the difficult situation its in now, but you should be directing that anger at the root cause of the problems. Not the people who are trying to clean up after it. Anyone who reads the DYK talk page can see that even the most strident of critics have for the most part, completely ignored all the editors who have contributed. I suspect because if we did start taking a look, it would end up in a frustrated screaming match of 'Why didnt you realise you were being used?'. Personally I would rather not say anything to a good editor than criticise them for being duped by a third party. Only in death does duty end (talk) 09:53, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Duped or not, I've contributed to Gibraltar articles out of pure interest, I care about content. Admittedly I've always been curious as to why Victuallers was so keen and always imagined that there was some personal gain involved, but regardless of him, I think the work which has been produced with his involvement has been almost entirely satisfactory and does improve our coverage. Oh I did start accusing involved certain individuals and directed my anger at the involved parties initially and they swear to me that the situation has been completely exaggerated and overblown, I believe them. Regardless of what is going on in the background in Gibraltar if you simply browse through the articles created to date there is no real POV, no message saying "come to Gibraltar, we're the best in the world for tourists" but the quality is generally pretty good and almost entirely historical. Any visitor unaware of the background is not going to visit an article and think "oh yes that's an advert forcing me to book a holiday in Gibraltar". Culturally it is very interesting in my opinion and valuable for wikipedia to have articles like Moorish Gibraltar. We as a resource are the real winners over this.
I admittedly resent it to think that some people are being paid over their involvement and I'm not, but they deny it. I think too much importance has been placed on DYKs when alarmingly nobody really seems to have looked at the articles individually as components to improving wikipedia as a resource in the long term. I believe we benefit the most over it as a resource which is really all that matters. If a similar project preferably without "manipulation" was scaled worldwide imagine how much better off we'd be as a resource. If wikipedia and the DYK is genuinely being used as a marketing tool its a poor marketing tool and a very low percentage even notice DYK. None of the articles say "come to Gibraltar. We're the best". Content is neutral, largely historical and meets guidelines. If generating interest in it historically is the goal I think this is a good thing. Its a win-win situation. Monitoring of these articles are so tight now anyway, its hardly an ideal way to advertise Gibraltar is it? Maybe the government of Gibraltar and the cultural people involved with it are not entirely motivated by increasing tourism but genuinely want to improve the resources on the country? Has anybody considered that? A few of the people involved in the project like the director of the botanical gardens for instance seems genuinely interested in documenting the plants and things. Commercial gain aside, we need people like museum fellows and directors and such to work on wikipedia, anywhere in the world.. In regards to "Why didnt you realise you were being used?", aren't we all acutely aware that our free contributions to the website are being used? Few of us would edit people if we didn't get something out of it personally, the love of sharing knowledge and building a great resource.. Gibraltar is no different.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 10:09, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
As an outside observer, I haven't seen any criticism by Jimbo (or indeed anyone else) of the overwhelming majority of the editors who have contributed, or of the quality of what they have written. Admittedly, I haven't seen much praise either (unless you count DYK credits, which I don't) so I can fully understand why those editors are pissed off at what's been happening. But, the criticism is not aimed at them, rather at how DYK hooks on the main page have come to be used as a marketing tool. Personally I think it's all been more cock-up than conspiracy - I suspect that Victuallers never thought through the implications, and wasn't stopped in time - but it highlights the failings of DYK. There is a relatively small group of editors - Victuallers among them, and Blofeld - who seem to see getting a DYK credit almost an end in itself, as part of a never-ending competition. I admit that to some extent I used to think that way, but looking at some DYKs and hooks I became, frankly, embarrassed to be associated with the process. It often (not always, but often) has very little to do either with encouraging new editors, or with expanding WP's coverage in areas that are important for an encyclopedia to cover. It needs to be radically re-thought. Ghmyrtle (talk) 10:42, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

"Victuallers among them, and Blofeld - who seem to see getting a DYK credit almost an end in itself, as part of a never-ending competition". Wrong. I've long been highly critical of DYK and I personally think it needs a major revamp with more encouragement to produce quality. I regularly make proposals to remove its petty rules and to focus on what is important, quality, not length of time duration of writing. I have proposed proper competitions with a monthly prize to get editors to produce content top no avail. I like having a bank of decent articles I can refer to but having an article on the main page has never been anything I've cared about, if you actually looked into the Gibraltarpedia pages you'll see I am not involved in the points competition despite have contributed a fair few articles. I agree, I don't like to think that people are being used or that wikipedia is being used as a marketing tool, but if you look at the actual product its productive to improving wikipedia as a resource. I'm not saying Jimmy has directly attacked editors, what concerns me most is that the editors behind the articles and the actual product itself has been overlooked and not taken into consideration because of the anger directed at Gibraltarpedia and DYK. Ghmyrtle, you were on good terms with Victuallers on Monmouthpedia I thought and produced quite a lot of content. I gather you were unaware of the background? ♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 11:51, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

Well, if I was mistaken in my suppositions I apologise. So far as I know, I am on perfectly good terms with Victuallers, Mrjohncummings, and yourself, on a personal level, as for that matter I am with Monmouthshire Council officers - my comments were not intended as any sort of attack on anyone. At the time Monmouthpedia was launched, what was the "background" I should have been aware of? The problems arose because there was too much emphasis in Monmouth on the idea of competition, over sheer numbers of articles produced, which led to separate articles on topics of very marginal notability, purely intended to boost numbers rather than value for readers. More importantly, Monmouthpedia was then deemed to be a "success" (according to what criteria?), and used as a launching pad for what could be, and was, seen to be a marketing initiative in relation to Gibraltar. That was a mistake, and steps need to be taken to ensure it's not repeated - including a shake-up of the DYK process, which we agree on. Ghmyrtle (talk) 13:17, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Yes, there is a danger of too excessive coverage, I agree. Some of the Monmouthpedia articles did seem borderline notability but my general opinion was that they were all well sourced and appropriate and I like seeing detailed coverage of places. Yes, more effort should be encouraged to be put into quality. I recently proposed that DYK revise and change to X 2 expansion only for core articles. I expanded Marrekech from practically scratch and it has been rejected from DYK because it "breaks the rules", not long enough or done quick enough which is wrong, is 100 kb!! but its not Gibraltarpedia which is solely to blame... A way to deal with this problem is to both revise the DYK process and to beat the commercial exploiters at their own game. If the foundation funded a monthly prize awarded to editors for getting core articles up to GA status at least the focus would be wider and might encourage more editors to produce decent content and nothing "sneaky" would be going on and we'd benefit having important articles showcased on the main page and brought up to a decent status. But any proposal is ignored, even the "add new GAs to DYK" was blown out. People generally don't like change and because a consensus is rarely ever formed our growth and continued improvement is being stalled. I'm sure Jimbo himself must exasperate at times that attempts to reform rarely has the success he has wanted.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 13:41, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
The fundamental difference between us is that you think competitions on WP are a good idea, and I think they are, generally, a terrible idea. Ghmyrtle (talk) 15:30, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Whatever motivates editors to produce good content which meets the guidelines...♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 15:38, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Do you think editors need a dual motivation to write articles, i.e. prizes AND a slot on the main page? I don't think so. My impression was that it was not the authors who pushed the articles at DYK, but Roger to begin with, until the scandal broke, and now Prioryman. You yourself complained about Prioryman's role in this. AndreasKolbe JN466 17:05, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

press briefings

Note - I've moved this down to its own heading as it's an important issue. Prioryman (talk) 21:43, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

Important note: I wrote to Jayen466 privately to point out that if he was responsible for that news story appearing, it is not helpful for him to do that sort of thing. His view appears to be that getting negative press about the Gibraltarpedia situation is essential in forcing positive change. My point to him is that doing such things (emailing reporters) is not at all helpful. The Foundation has already hired an outside firm for a full investigation, and the community is discussing the ramifications and what is to be done about it. If every little comment I make ends up in the press, then my very large influence on the community and on the press becomes part of the problem, and I am therefore incentivized to be quiet about things that I'm passionate about. That's wrong, and I won't do it.

I thought a private note to Jayen466, with whom I agree on this any many other issues, to encourage him to be a better ally would be a useful thing to do. What was his response? To send my private note to a reporter, who is thinking of publishing it. In the interest of preventing any sort of stupid press based on misquotes, I'm going to publish the entire thing myself right here:

I'm not sure if you had anything to do with this:
but since you were interviewed, I'm guessing you might have.
It's already hard for me to weigh in forcefully on internal issues due to the possibility of
press coverage of what should be an interesting and thoughtful internal debate. It's especially
hard if people are cultivating that sort of press coverage.
There is no positive benefit to press coverage like this - it doesn't help Wikipedia to improve."

Andreas, you should apologize to me for this breach of etiquette.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:39, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

I'll gladly apologise for hurting your feelings. The fact is, though, that nothing about Gibraltarpedia was being addressed, as with so many other longstanding issues. We had one Gibraltarpedia hook a day, and neither you nor anyone else did anything. Secondly, you left out a bit of the e-mail: the subject line. It was, "How sometimes you aren't as helpful to me as I would hope." (There was no salutation, and no signature.) If Wikipedia has become a commodity to be purchased, and you are powerless to change it, then the public deserves to know it, as they see your face and hear your voice a great deal, and may reasonably assume that Wikipedia is run according to the ideals you represent to them. Regards, Jimbo. AndreasKolbe JN466 19:18, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
"nothing about Gibraltarpedia was being addressed" - false. If you don't even start with the truth, then it is hard for us to take the rest of your nonsense seriously. That I didn't respond promptly to one of your demands during my honeymoon? I make no apologies for that. Your aggressiveness is inappropriate.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:37, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Yes, I know there is an investigation of WMUK. That is not in question. I was talking about the resumption of Gibraltar hooks on October 12, at a rate of one a day (6 in 6 days). It is still going on (even if it's less than one a day right now), and I don't think it is going to stop. AndreasKolbe JN466 20:48, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Yes indeed, people are permitted to write articles related to southern Spain or northern Morocco, and yes indeed, they are allowed to submit them to DYK if they meet the criteria for DYK (for now, they require two reviews instead of one). Your attempting to pressure Jimbo to change that (both directly and indirectly) is not going to achieve anything. The Wikipedia main page is not censored - not by your political agenda, nor by anyone else's. That's not going to change anytime soon. Sorry. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 02:09, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Welcome to the club, Jimbo, of people whom Kolbe has tried to screw over. He has been carrying out a campaign of hostile press briefings against Wikipedia, and against both me and you personally, concerning Gibraltarpedia. A few days ago he wrote a very nasty piece on Wikipediocracy that was directed against me in particular, giving among other things my real name and profession, which are totally irrelevant to any issues concerning Gibraltarpedia. He's been shopping that piece to multiple journalists who have previously run articles critical of Wikipedia, such as Andrew Orlowski. He's shown himself to be as little concerned with your privacy as with mine. He is of course lying when he claims that "nothing about Gibraltarpedia was being addressed". It was the subject of multiple discussions on Wikipedia talk:Did you know prior to the current RfC (see [13], [14], [15], [16], [17], [18], [19], [20], [21], [22]). What he really means by "not being addressed" is that at each decision point a substantial and sometimes overwhelming majority of editors have disagreed with proposals to ban Gibraltar-related DYKs. The fact is that Kolbe is willing to cause any amount of damage in order to bully and intimidate Wikipedians into doing what he wants. Can you honestly think of another example of an editor who has tried to get his way in a community discussion by carrying out a systematic off-wiki campaign of hostile press briefing? This isn't just inappropriate; it's a betrayal of Wikipedia's most fundamental principles of civility and collegiate interaction. "Editors should interact with each other in a respectful and civil manner", as WP:5P says. Prioryman (talk) 21:43, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Yes, God forbid somebody should think doing paid marketing projects through Wikipedia should be the problem, eh? AndreasKolbe JN466 21:54, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Prioryman, coming from you, accusing another editor of "willing to cause any amount of damage in order to bully and intimidate Wikipedians into doing what he wants" is hypocritical. Every time I've read a discussion about Gibraltarpedia, I see you charge in, accusing, baiting, bullying, wikilawyering, derailing - anything and everything to protect Gibraltarpedia. You're practically running a clinic on how to eliminate opposing views in Wikipedia. Considering the extremely tendentious nature of your editing (including your refactoring of this page!!!), I don't know why you aren't topic banned yet. --JaGatalk 23:06, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
By the way, I did not give Prioryman's profession on Wikipediocracy. It's readily apparent to anyone who googles the name he has claimed as his own here on this site, but it was certainly not included in my post. AndreasKolbe JN466 00:14, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

What the hey is going on here? Why is Prioryman splitting off conversation on another user (Jimbo's) talk page? Shouldn't this be up to Jimbo? And even worse, why is he splitting it off and placing it under a clearly insulting and WP:BATTLEGROUND title? Did Jimbo approve or have any say in what Prioryman called this section?

I've kept the split but I have changed the title of the section.

More generally, this follows up on the heels of Prioryman outing users (see block log), falsely accusing JN of running "hate sites" [23], insulting people based on their profession [24], referring to fairly innocuous comments of others as "drivel" simply because he disagrees with them, referring to other people's comments as a"frothy mixture" [25] in an obvious allusion to you know what, and referring to other editors as "maggots" [26]. At this point it's painfully obvious that Prioryman is here to perpetuate a WP:BATTLEGROUND on Wikipedia and his actions and statements have well crossed the line into the "disruptive" territory. A block + topic ban from referring to certain people is in order. Volunteer Marek  21:56, 26 October 2012 (UTC)

@Prioryman you edited under your real name . Jayen is one of the most decent supporters of the en wiki project that I have ever come across - there are as we all know - lots of messed up issues on the project - Jayen works hard to save the project from such problems - Youreallycan 21:57, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
No, I didn't, and I deeply deplore the toxic way that Kolbe has addressed this issue. I'm all for robust and honest discussions on-wiki. But trying to bully and intimidate people off-wiki, through his thoroughly nasty forum and his campaign of press briefings, is way over the mark of what constitutes acceptable behaviour. Prioryman (talk) 22:14, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I have to put down a contrary view here. Although in the beginning I was supportive of Andreas, and pursued my own pressure against the Gibraltarpedia project due to the problems highlighted, we have since diverged in viewpoint. I find some of the lengths he goes to extreme and discouraging to positive change. I've said this to him before: spinning minor issues into major stories simply makes people nervous and secretive. Some aspects of the community are less open due to the way this pressure has been applied. Multiple editors I've talked with have expressed fear over contributing in case any idle remarks are seized upon and splashed across the news somewhere. I have to question, in such a situation, what the intent is - to improve Wikipedia or to "bring it down". And lets be honest here: although I also think Prioryman has been troublesome to the opposite extreme, Andreas is not clean of misbehaviour to varying degrees.
At this stage his campaign is actually harming efforts to bring light and clarity to various project and aspects of the community, because people are battoning down the hatches and casting out those who wish to honestly raise important questions, but have the misfortune to be associated with the more extreme campaign. At this stage I am deeply disappointing in both "sides" of this affair. --Errant (chat!) 22:09, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
You forget that there is a third side to this affair: the public. The public has a right to know what goes on here. AndreasKolbe JN466 22:11, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
The public doesn't decide what the Wikipedia community does. The community does that. Prioryman (talk) 22:17, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Of course. Press coverage is just that: you can ignore it, and carry on as usual. But you should not begrudge people knowing what is happening. If the Gibraltar hooks are continuing, after all the scandal, the public has a right to know, and reporters have a right to cover it if they think it of interest. AndreasKolbe JN466 01:59, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
OH YES THEY DO! They decide it via laws passed by legislature and by general opprobrium. The reddit community thought they were immune from outside influence they were wrong. Free speech doesn't govern this website economics does. Currently it exists on public donations, if those dry up becuase the site is seen to be being governed by yob culture, then it either becomes inthrall to advertisers, or a wholly owned subsidiary of Google (same thing really), or dies. Your choice. Carry on. John lilburne (talk) 07:30, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Sure, I agree. However, I think you are pushing an extreme, or rather selective, agenda in what you push on the media. And that is even worse because you are abusing public trust in the media: something I personally find abhorrent. You've avoided the point though; now the criticism is levelled at you, I am sorry, but I expect the same clarity as I did (and admittedly didn't get) when questioning others. --Errant (chat!) 22:20, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I would like Wikipedia to conduct its business morally, and ethically. But where and if it does not, I would like the public to know about that. Does that answer your question? AndreasKolbe JN466 01:59, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
If you can convince the press that it is indeed a minor matter, that it is indeed the pushing of an extreme then whatever influence Andreas may have will vanish. However, at the moment the press does not feel that this is a minor issue or an extreme point of view, but one worthy of writing about. Additionally if say politicians are found to be manipulating articles, or outside PR types are doing it, or some campaigning group is doing the same then they inevitably attract opprobrium from the wikipedia community, and I believe the term meatpuppet is used to describe them. Lets suppose that Monsanto was running a competition for the best article on their products, extra points if you managed to get an article on the front page. No one here would be defending it, so if not Monsanto why Gibraltar? John lilburne (talk) 06:46, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Jimbo, Prioryman, if Wikipedia's handling of this issue was upright and effective, then there wouldn't be anything for the press to report on. Criticizing the whistleblower is lazy and dishonest. You both should know better. Fix Wikipedia's issues first, then perhaps you might have a moral standing to criticize Andreas. And Prioryman, the WMUK is a charity and the WMF is a non-profit, so yes, they do have public accountability. Cla68 (talk) 22:28, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
Our handling of this issue has been and continues to be upright and effective, and yet it's still easy to generate headlines about it. This is particularly true if I comment forcefully on the issue, because for better or worse, the press is always interested in what I have to say about Wikipedia. Andreas is simply speaking falsehoods when he claims nothing has been done about it.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:33, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
The project does appear to have done things to address this and that is great , especially the cash control issues - Jayen's comment as I saw it was more about the way the front page is still being used by these guys - Youreallycan 22:40, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
And it is worth saying that Gibraltar-related DYKs are super problematic and should stop. People wanting to beat me up personally about it should remember that I'm on my Honeymoon and have been extremely clear about what I think should happen. My point is: if you agree with me and want to help me root out this kind of problem, then giving me additional headaches dealing with trolling and inaccurate media reports ("Wales: Let's ban Gibraltar-crazy Wikipedians for 5 years") is not really helpful. This idea that you have to cause a stink in the press in order to get things done is cute and I can understand a sort of appeal to it. But it's just not true.
If you want to help root out problems like this then the first thing you can do is recognize that we who are sensible are also in the majority. The storyline that the Wikipedia community is insane and you have to act like a jerk to get something sensible is just wrong. We who are sensible are in the majority. Make thoughtful and reasoned arguments, and make other good editors aware of relevant discussions, polls, and votes. You'll get the right answer every time that way. Acting like a troll or warrior just wastes everyone's time.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:45, 26 October 2012 (UTC)
I am sorry I was not more mindful of the fact that you might have been on honeymoon. As I said, I saw you comment on other threads, like the Prem Rawat one, and assumed you chose to ignore the Gibraltarpedia one. You're currently at a board meeting though, right?
My comment above was indeed about the ongoing product placement on the main page, which is continuing with impunity. There was another Gibraltar hook on the main page today. That makes 10 in the past 15 days, if I am not mistaken. That is a higher rate than the one you called "absurd" a few weeks back. Editors said in so many words, now the press aren't looking any more, we can start up again.
I do not agree with your assertion that "we who are sensible are in the majority". People like Mattbuck are running Commons, as per the thread above, which is about to be archived. They see nothing wrong with keeping an anonymously uploaded image of "silly kids ... fucking" (that was the literal file name) on Wikimedia servers, without the slightest bit of evidence that the "kids" concerned are of age, and have both consented to the upload here. And without knowing that the girl is not being harassed by an ex-boyfriend. Teenagers have killed themselves over this sort of thing. Is this sensible? You know and I know that if DC had not made a complaint about the "silly kids fucking" photographs here, on your page in a different project, those photographs would still be gracing Commons. (Which, actually, they do: because they are still on the server, visible to all administrators, including teenage ones.)
Is it sensible that Commons refused to ban a contributor with a conviction for distributing child pornography, who was inviting dozens of other users of unknown ages to send him nude images of themselves? Is it reasonable that the Wikimedia office was forced to intervene? When you went into Commons two years ago, the community rose against you, with 405 editors in favour of stripping you of your founder rights, and 125 against (me among them). Have I and others not made reasoned arguments about the state of Commons? It has not made any difference, and the situation festers on year after year.
When you wanted flagged revisions installed, the community rose against you. We still have regular defamation cases like Sarkeesian and Levy hitting the press. Is that sensible? When you said you were in favour of an image filter, the community rose against you. When, after you voted to rescind the image filter resolution, you said here on this page, 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., you gave up after just two days. You were not in a majority with your proposal (or perhaps you never intended to follow through on it).
You speak of a bright line for editing by PR people to the press, but this is not what is happening here on the ground. Not least in Gibraltarpedia, where consultants for a paid publicity project are openly editing articles a client wants to have on Wikipedia so they can better market themselves as a tourist product. What is the difference between that, and the PR department of Mercedes editing our Mercedes articles, perhaps starting a competition to go with it, and nominating their work for the main page?
As far as the DYK hook question is concerned, most editors seem to care more about being able to get whatever article they want onto the main page, and about maximising their DYK count, than about avoiding the impression and reality of product placement. The RfC on the Gibraltarpedia hooks stands 42 to 30 in favour of "business as usual", with up to one Gibraltar hook a day. We may be on the same side in those disputes, but that side does not look like the majority to me, Jimmy. AndreasKolbe JN466 01:47, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Kolbe is indeed mistaken about the frequency of Gibraltar hooks (not "starting with the truth" as Jimbo would say). Wikipedia:Recent additions shows which articles have appeared on DYK. In the last 15 days we have had the following Gibraltar hooks: Main Guard (26 Oct), The Rock Hotel (24 Oct, hook did not mention Gibraltar), Trafalgar Cemetery (21 Oct), North Front Cemetery (19 Oct), Flat Bastion Magazine and Rosia Water Tanks (17 Oct). (Note that the last 3 were articles that had been held up due to the earlier month-long moratorium). To get the higher figure, Kolbe is counting articles that are not about Gibraltar and whose hooks make no mention of Gibraltar. Over the course of the last week, we have had three Gibraltar-related DYKs, compared with (for instance) 26 DYKs on mushrooms in the same period. Prioryman (talk) 01:59, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Prioryman, you cannot count. In addition to the six you list, on 15 October we had Rosia Bay and Nun's Well, on the 13th we had synagogues of Gibraltar, and on the 12th we had Gibraltar F.C. That is 10, and that is without counting José Cruz Herrera (26 October), which cites and mentions his museum that is a stone's throw from Gibraltar airport. If you include that one (and it is certainly within the scope the government of Gibraltar is paying for), it's 11. And for God's sake, the Rock Hotel is in Gibraltar. AndreasKolbe JN466 02:05, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
You're right, I missed those last few. Apologies. However, North Front Cemetery, Flat Bastion Magazine, Rosia Water Tanks, Rosia Bay, Nun's Well, Synagogues of Gibraltar and Gibraltar F.C. were all articles that had been caught up in the earlier moratorium and were in a backlog awaiting release to the Main Page. Clearing the backlog meant that for about a week only (12-18 October) there was an average frequency of about one article daily. The backlog has now gone and the frequency has fallen further; it is now down to one per 1.75 days over the last week (19-26 October). and is likely to keep falling, given the relatively slow rate of reviewing at the moment. Claims of "swamping" were silly before and are even sillier now. As for José Cruz Herrera, who didn't even live or work in Gibraltar, the hook for that one was "the Spanish painter José Cruz Herrera worked in Casablanca for much of his life, where he was a prolific painter of scenes of Moroccan everyday life". You've rightly been ridiculed for claiming that this somehow promotes Gibraltar. Prioryman (talk) 02:18, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the apology. You say it is down to "one per 1.75 days", but that is still higher than the widely reported 17 per 31 days we had in August, the month where these hooks were at their highest previous frequency, and which Jimbo called "absurd". On your last point, the Gibraltarpedia scope the Gib government pays for specifically includes La Linea, where the museum is located. It is no different than if the museum were, like the Rock Hotel, in Gibraltar. It's all part of the augmented reality experience that is the whole point of this project. And it would be a great project, and would not have attracted opprobrium, if we hadn't had the undue DYK promotion (and the conflict of interest, of course, although that was really an off-wiki matter). AndreasKolbe JN466 02:58, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Ah, the very fine Rosia Water Tanks. Those are like, historically significant water tanks, right, that were demolished a great many years ago, and whose site is now a building site for low cost housing? And Andreas is really telling us that mention of such a non-existent facility is going to draw tourists to Gibraltar? (Or Morocco, or Algeria, or Egypt, or who knows what on earth now...) --Demiurge1000 (talk) 02:05, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
They were of great local historical interest, and the subject of a preservation effort. There is a nice website about them on the net (which I noticed our article failed to include in its external links). AndreasKolbe JN466 02:08, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
By the way, I don't think labeling the outside inquiry into WMUK's operations as an "investigation" is accurate. It's a business consultation. Consultants usually take a different approach than investigators. Cla68 (talk) 02:13, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Jimbo, thank you for the comments you have made in relation to Gibraltarpedia and related issues. Like Jayen466, I am disappointed that the community did not act more swiftly and decisively to contain the damage and address the underlying issues. As a result of that failure, I fully expect that there will be more questions raised and more news stories between now and next year when the independent reviewer's report is released. It is often tempting to think of you as someone who get broken things fixed, but you are neither the community nor the WMF. Jayen and I should look elsewhere for action and I, for one, will continue to press the community to more fully examine the situation. I think your opinion on this is clear and your comments have been strong, and I thank you for that. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 13:13, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Could the Wikipedia community ever get something wrong?

Jimbo writes: "The storyline that the Wikipedia community is insane and you have to act like a jerk to get something sensible is just wrong." AndreasKolbe writes: "When you went into Commons two years ago, the community rose against you, with 405 editors in favour of stripping you of your founder rights." So, Jimbo, if the Wikipedia community is sane, you should agree that your founder flag should be removed, or maybe in your particular situation generally sane Wikipedia community got it wrong? (talk) 04:08, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Not that your argument would be sound even if they were the same community. Wikipedia is not Commons. --OnoremDil 05:08, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

I am very sure that at least 50% (probably more) of the users who supported the removal are members of the Wikipedia community. I'm really interested in learning Jimbo's opinion about this. (talk) 13:25, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Sane people make errors sometimes. Even me. The argument that this is in any way relevant is, as already pointed out, completely unsound.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 23:55, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
Of course sane people make errors sometimes, but my question is not about individual sane people, and not even about you. I asked, if you believe that the Wikipedia community could make errors. Did the Wikipedia community make an error, when it voted for the removal of your founder flag? (talk) 02:35, 28 October 2012 (UTC)
Well, Jimbo, you are not willing to respond my question, and I will state my own opinion on it. Yes, the Wikipedia community makes errors, some of which are horrendous. They have a potential to destroy a person’s reputation and even a person’s health. A few weeks ago I talked to a person who has an unwanted BLP on Wikipedia. This BLP created such an enormous anguish for this person that he/she ended up, seeking psychiatric help. BLPs, communality bans discussions and even some arbitration cases are used to hurt and to destroy opponents. Some participants in these discussions are missing sense of grace, humanity, and even style. Most of them are power-hungry; they add no or little content to Wikipedia, but frequent Administrative noticeboards and AfD discussions. You, Jimbo, have enough power, enough influence and maybe even enough sanity to undo at least some of the harm done by the Wikipedia community, the community you have created, but most of the times you do not feel comfortable or have no enough time to get involved. (talk) 17:40, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
I think you'll find that Ben & Jerry's, Toni & Guy, and Flora margarine, are all Unilever and scandalous behaviour in one branch will taint the rest. A current example would be Vanity Fair people are quite capable of walking up the chain and back down some other branch. There are numerous articles on this site which do the same. John lilburne (talk) 07:02, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

Jimmy, if I translated Algeciras from Spanish wikipedia and wrote an GA quality level article on it (its a core article and within the scope of Gibraltarpedia) would you be opposed to having it appear on the front page even though I have nothing at all to do with whatever it going on behind the scenes in Gibraltar. I genuinely would like to see the article improve as its the birthplace of my guitar hero and one of great historical interest so do you discourage me from doing so?♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 20:08, 27 October 2012 (UTC)

If you did it completely independently, because it's the birthplace of your guitar hero, then I would think we could make an exception. That's not really the point of any of this. The point is that there has been a quite justified public scandal about someone acting as a trustee of Wikimedia UK, and representing himself to the Foundation and others as such, while simultaneously acting as a paid consultant for someone seeking permission to use the logo for the Gibraltarpedia project, and while simultaneously and vigorously promoting DYK hooks within the community for his client, with what many feel are insufficient disclosures. (I could be much stronger, but that's the mildest way I know to put it.) If other people are doing other unrelated things that happen to be in the same area, then thoughtful judgment calls can be made.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 23:55, 27 October 2012 (UTC)
I understand, and its far easier to say all Gibraltar articles are banned for 5 years full stop. But there is a lot of potential difficulty with such a strong repression, one which in fact goes against our very core values of providing knowledge and freedom to edit. That is, in doing so you inadvertently are discouraging any editor, newbie or innocent veteran who might happen to want and improve an article with the Gibraltarpedia territory, which may be very valuable like Algeciras and saying they have no right to e credited with a DYK with it purely because a small group of people might be attaching a commercial value to that territory. But I understand that simply being "Gibraltar" you automatically assume it is part of a puppet game to advertise. But amid this Gibraltar scandal I think you've overlooked that some of the contributors were actually innocent and contributed to them in the spirit of wikipedia and have sadly been lumped in and regarded as money thirsty traitors to wikipedia, when they weren't even aware of what was going on and contributed to content in the way you'd normally be very happy for them to do. Most of us work independently on wikipedia, and to automatically assume that anybody creating an article within the Gibraltarpedia territory (which also includes Algeciras and Tangiers, two core articles on my list of priorities to develop, is being paid and all part of a scam is wrong. But its as Mr White from the Bond series said "Its knowing who to trust", and I can see why you feel very let down by certain individuals. But the proposal is essentially punishing the people who are not involved in it and are genuinely inspired by projects like Monmouthpedia and Gibraltarpedia as a wiki-real city interaction development.♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 16:17, 28 October 2012 (UTC)
Obviously, it's not a requirement that all good new or expanded articles go through the DYK process - many don't. The issue isn't about editors contributing high quality articles - it's about controlling subsidised publicity on the main page. The two issues need to be de-coupled. Ghmyrtle (talk) 08:59, 29 October 2012 (UTC)


The "ban" being reactive, over-broad, and unresponsive to the Pedia content issue, is likely doomed to failure (it also has that "ban" label). If the issue is the running/rules of contests and the awarding of prizes, funded by whomever, those issues are what should be addressed, directly, by Pedia policy. Alanscottwalker (talk) 16:39, 28 October 2012 (UTC)

I agree contests on Wikipedia are a problem. I've been pointing out bad science and plagiarisms in DYKs for years on Wikipedia, and I usually get ignored, blocked, accused of being mean to innocent editors just trying to do their best (I think WP:AGF is the biggest cudgel in town). The articles are often too technical for other editors to review, and they are simply passed without verification of their content. One editor has had problems with his biology pointed out many times, and he even agreed with a commentator that he does not understand evolutionary biology, yet he continues to write evolutionary biology in articles, promote them to DYK main page, and score WikiCup points for the articles.
The Wikipedia community may be wonderful at policing itself, or not, but there is limited expertise on Wikipedia in certain areas, and experts do not tend to be full time members of the community, as their ability to maintain their expertise requires a lot of work, and interacting with the community is not fruitful.
The contest draws and allows this bad science to be posted on Wikipedia, and I consider it a problem. I disagree that the community is fixing it.
I think that the half dozen or more bad science articles, from plagiarism, to nonsense, to outright wrong, each month making the main page are a real problem for Wikipedia, far worse than a well-written and properly researched Gibraltar article. -Fjozk (talk) 16:47, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
Contests are a bad idea even if the only prize is an accolade on Wikipedia and there's nothing in the real world. Ken Arromdee (talk) 18:57, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
Why a bad idea? If they stimulate the production of articles (in the case of Gibraltar, on a very underrepresented topic area with very few active editors), isn't that a good thing? Prioryman (talk) 19:02, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
Let's just note that over the past two days, we have had four hooks with a link to Gibraltar:
Today, we have had the following Did you knows:
... that Gibraltar Creek is not located in Gibraltar at all, but is a 13.1-kilometre (8.1-mile) long river found in Australia?
... that the area around the Spanish beach of Cala Arenas has been inhabited for thousands of years due to its strategic position facing the Strait of Gibraltar?
Yesterday we had:
... that Tibúrcio Spannocchi proposed to sling a chain across the Strait of Magellan to prevent ships sailing through it? (Spannocchi is in Category:People associated with Gibraltar)
... that rubbish has been illegally dumped on Gibraltar Peak near Canberra?
I guess next someone ought to do a 5x expansion of Gibraltar Hill, and put that on the main page. Wikipedia truly is an encyclopedia like no other. :) AndreasKolbe JN466 —Preceding undated comment added 22:28, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
Aboriginal Australians count as part of the Global South(tm). So I'm all for it. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 22:46, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
Stimulating the production of articles is not necessarily a good thing - it depends. Many of the articles produced for Monmouth stretch the limits of notability and usefulness to readers, in my view. Stimulating the improvement of articles, and the improvement of the encyclopedia as a whole, is much more important - but also much more difficult to reward, as the best results are often produced by collaboration and exchanges of views rather than by individual editors striving to reach (for example) DYK standards. Ghmyrtle (talk) 22:57, 29 October 2012 (UTC)
You have a fair point - quality rather than quantity, depth rather than breadth of coverage. It's probably a bit of a value judgement in the end, though. Take Gibraltar (again) as an example: previously it's been really underrepresented in terms of Wikipedia's coverage. Which is better for the encyclopedia - to have a few articles of very high quality or to have a lot of articles of average to good quality? Narrow but best-quality coverage or wider but medium-quality coverage? Prioryman (talk) 01:03, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
Until the beyond lame Gibraltar in Australia hook, that ties to an article that says nothing about its name, I had no problem with the Gibraltar articles. The ones I have read were accurate, well-written, appropriately researched and sourced, informative, and without plagiarisms or worse. Compared to seeing bad science that creates a brand new taxonomy for an organism, well, I would rather have an all-Gibraltar en.Wiki than bad science. Wikipedia posts a bad piece of science about an organism, and it is the first result returned by Google, then, even if removed from Wikipedia, it can continue to pop up in Wiki mirrors for ever. I would put a 5-year-moratorium on bad science long before I thought twice about good quality Gibraltar DYKs.
Joint efforts might be some means of improving the quality of contest articles; but I also think slam-dunking the creators of junk science on Wikipedia would be a no-brainer, but once you have friends in the community, it really doesn't matter what you write, someone will jump in to defend you and attack anyone who questions your ability to use sources appropriately. -Fjozk (talk) 01:56, 30 October 2012 (UTC)
(Sticking my head in here) DYK is where I have seen the most collaboration on Wikipedia. DYKs are often the product of teamwork, and often undergo improvement by several editors working together or independently after they're nominated. It's always tended to encourage workshopping, and that has led to team article creations and expansions. That's what I believe is being misunderstood in some quarters as backscratching. Tangential to the issue of competitions, because in the WikiCup you do see some collaborative work. But few true lone wolves stick around here, and so the culture tends toward collaboration anyway, and because DYK is not very competitive, it amplifies that. (Now withdrawing my head again.) Yngvadottir (talk) 03:43, 30 October 2012 (UTC)

Suggestion give help for the Creator of Wikipedia (and for the Honoured doctor)


Help is here can begin: Thank you! - (talk) 19:01, 27 October 2012 (UTC).

On VK (social network) everyone gets info very quickly. The Hall - is not about me (but I can help, because I know about the mechanism of this situation good: I know Russian better and became member in the community not long time ago - including). During 2 hours (after good end of interaction with SPhilbrick) the Founder can easy leave the Hall (personaly). Section for candidates will be contain other info (better info, than now, softly speaking). This situation have relation to the human, who got the highest award from the president of Russia (he has great respecting in the scope of science and not only). Other competent sources were ignored in this sad situation (Russian admin Carn). I say this about the contribution of the professor on Wikipedia (detail has relation to his reputation). Thus, I wish create the favor for two people in the same time: the Founder of Wikipedia and the Honoured Doctor of the Russian Federation. List of the such people is here: Russian original. See:

Указ Президента Российской Федерации от 14 января 2006 года № 23
О награждении государственными наградами Российской Федерации
"Заслуженный врач Российской Федерации"
ЮДЕЛЬСОНУ Якову Борисовичу - профессору государственного образовательного учреждения высшего профессионального образования "Смоленская государственная медицинская академия"

English translation of the Award (source: Rossiyskaya Gazeta).

P.S. In this Ru article: Список заслуженных врачей Российской Федерации (Смоленская область) - must be made some changes (Яков Борисович Юдельсон) -. EN. Everyone can in any time. Kind regards! - (talk) 20:59, 28 October 2012 (UTC).