User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 131

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This is likely of interest to many people in English Wikipedia. Where should we best share it to get a good audience and discussion? (And please don't wait on me to do that - I'm at the WMF board meeting and unable to participate much for the next couple of days!)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 08:30, 19 April 2013 (UTC)

The best place may be to create a project on it. The project could report to pump/policy and once we have a guideline framework we could have some sort of RfC, edit as we go, and then seek consensus for policy/guideline approval. It is probably happenening now so why not bring it out of the closet?--Canoe1967 (talk) 08:49, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
  • German WP has a WikiProject: The German Wikipedia has de:WP:WikiProjekt Umgang mit bezahltem Schreiben ("WikiProject for Dealing with Paid Writing") started in December 2012. In the German language, the phrase "paid editing" is literally "bezahlt Bearbeitung" but they have been using "bezahlt Schreiben" ("paid writing") or "bezahltem Schreiben" with dativ preposition "mit" (meaning "with"). -Wikid77 20:56, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
  • What struck me here as radically different from the enWP is that the deWP permits role accounts, where an account is officially editing for an organization, and has a formal process for certifying them as actually representing the This strikes me as somewhat less artificial than our rule that it must be an individual person, albeit anonymous. Even so, the deWP maintains the rule that such editors have no special privileges. DGG ( talk ) 05:55, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
There's part of the answer to the paid editing situation: paid editors need to be easily identifiable and carefully scrutinized. Carrite (talk) 15:47, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Identifying them and scrutinizing them may cause them to go into hiding though. This may be why we need a project to sort out any policy on them. If they edit with POV or get promotional we consider topic bans or blocks. If other editors harrass them we consider interaction bans or blocks .--Canoe1967 (talk) 16:31, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Right, let me get this idea straight. We allow paid editors on the conditions that they declare their status and employer and accept extra scrutiny. We guarantee them against harassment, but we come down hard on anyone who we find to be an undeclared paid editor. Is that a fair summation? If that's the idea I think it's workable. Need to work out the kinks first, of course. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 16:43, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Undeclared ones shouldn't be a problem. Competition paid editors and us should keep the articles check. Paris Hilton's paid editors will trim the fluff from the Justin Beiber article and vice-versa. There shouldn't be anything wrong if you are paid to bring an article up to featured status. It may actually improve many articles, others will hire people to fix their articles, non-profit groups will have contests with regular editors to get their articles better than the Bill Gates one, Wikipedia will grow fast and strong, and then we can relax and drink beer.--Canoe1967 (talk) 19:33, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Eric Schmidt (Google's CEO) points out in this interview the usefulness of an “influence graph” (it a long transcript so just search for the phase “influence graph”) [1] (on second thoughts - you mustn’t -its secret - blah). We have seen already, how paid editors put a whole load of misinformation on WP for the rest of us to waste time on challenging and fighting their Wikilawering. Trying to match reason with their brick wall and blind unswaying (and paid for) rhetoric. "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" wikiquote. We editors, are the “influence graph” yet there are so many articles and we are so few in number by comparison that we sometimes give up from exhaustion. Does anyone have any ideas about software tools that can help identify commercial/political/ideological/etc., manipulation of WP articles?--Aspro (talk) 19:43, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Bots could probably detect articles that a single user is adding or removing vast material to/from compared to that editor's other article edits. If they happen between noon and 3pm compared to the editor's IP time zone that would probably help. If they get hot-headed on the talk page we could create a 'tag of shame' for the article until it passes good article review. "This ariticle is a mess and can't be trusted as truth because...". We should decide on a project first. Paid Editor Guideline Project?--Canoe1967 (talk) 20:05, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

Law project

I noticed that the media was mentioning that law enforcement was using Facebook and Twitter etc. to update the media and public. Should we consider a project page here for their input on 'breaking news'. We could treat it like a COI request page in case they notice that our material needs correction with breaking news stories. Thoughts?--Canoe1967 (talk) 20:41, 19 April 2013 (UTC)

Interesting thought. But we are a great deal more conservative/cautious (or should be, when we are at our best) than news sites who do original reporting, or sites for open conversation (twitter, reddit). So in cases of 'breaking news' we are (usually) not the primary problem. (We may very well be the primary problem for perpetuating unexciting errors over the long haul, of course.)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:05, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
I was just thinking along the lines of when the media is blatantly wrong like in Sago_Mine_disaster#Miscommunication_and_wrong_reports where we were wrong for a couple of hours as well. Families went from low to high, to super-low in a matter of hours. If the actual authorities had a fast and convenient way to correct us then that may help. I think at least one wrong name was included in the Boston article, edit wars happened with no talk page discussion, and this may have caused the full protection.--Canoe1967 (talk) 22:27, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, in that kind of example, shouldn't WP:BLP preclude our inclusion of names until we're sure that it's true, not just verifiable? (Yes, I know). I'd think the risk of including potentially damaging or traumatic information would supersede the fact that a media source had reported it. It'd have to be case-by-case, of course, but better no name than the wrong one for BLP purposes. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 22:55, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
I was thinking that they may not realize that we cover news like the other media and may wish a 'quick portal' to help us get material correct. We could reach the point where our page has the best information and quick as well. They may scrap Twitter and Facebook to just use us. They send to our little known project page or phone/email editors active on that page at the time. Those editors check sources, weigh the merit, and then edit the article.--Canoe1967 (talk) 23:12, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
See Miranda section on the Boston talk page. This is very relevant.--Canoe1967 (talk) 01:47, 20 April 2013 (UTC) Resolved.--Canoe1967 (talk) 16:34, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

Too difficult to create username

You must change the policy. It is way too easy to trigger "username is too similar to existing". It happens when it is not that similar and isn't going to confuse anyone. People are running out of names. I tried 5 different names already. (talk) 19:09, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

I think name changes take a couple of weeks. You could create a temporary name and if you like Canoe1966 discuss it with Canoe1967. If they don't mind a name similar to theirs, then have admin change your temp one.--Canoe1967 (talk) 19:44, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
The inconvenience discourages people from creating an account. (talk) 20:02, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
I see your point and sorry for just providing a work around. I don't know if the filter is easily adjustable or whether it needs a policy change. Someone on this page may know or at Wikipedia:Village pump (technical).--Canoe1967 (talk) 20:09, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
I pasted the above to Wikipedia:Village pump (technical) under the same heading. They have started responding. We could carry on here discussing the policy on it and talk about the tech issues there.--Canoe1967 (talk) 22:54, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

Don't administrators have to follow ArbCom rules too?

I am coming here because you commented on my case once before, and because you have always said your page was open to all... a kind of refuge. My issue is simple (I think): According to this section in the ArbCom ruling [2], "Should any editor subject to a restriction under the terms of this decision violate the restriction, then the editor may be blocked for a period of up to one week by any uninvolved administrator. After three blocks, the maximum block period shall increase to one year." I quote this because I was blocked once for 72 hours, then blocked for an entire year (at the hands of the same admin). I never got my three short term blocks but was immediately escalated to the maximum sanction. Now the same administrator is trying to block me again for longer than a week... forever, in fact - clearly exceeding the recommended maximum block period. (I won't even get into the lack of merit for this decision, but will simply address the break in required procedure.)

Also, regarding "discretionary sanctions", which apply to this ruling, the policy [3] states "Discretionary sanctions may be imposed by any uninvolved administrator after giving due warning" and "Prior to any sanctions being imposed, the editor in question shall be given a warning with a link to the decision authorizing sanctions; and, where appropriate, should be counseled on specific steps that he or she can take to improve his or her editing in accordance with relevant policies and guidelines." The blocking admin gave me no required warnings prior to my bans. And I certainly have never been given any counsel, though I have asked for it. Now the same admin wants to impose an indefinite ban, again, without the required warning. I am attempting discussion on his talk page, and have laid out reasons for my actions, but he isn't being very responsive.[4]

I had filed an ANI,[5], where I supplied plenty of diffs illustrating the problem, but withdrew it to discuss the matter with the admin, which I am attempting to do. But he isn't very responsive and has yet to answer any of my questions or weigh any of my evidence/diffs.

My question for the editors here: Don't administrators have to follow the ArbCom rules of enforcement just like the editors do?[6] I honestly feel I am being singled out by an involved editor/admin who is not following procedure and is singling out editors on one side of an argument, while letting the remaining editors repeatedly break the ArbCom ruling.[7]. By not following procedures, which are there to protect all editors, I believe his latest ban is invalid and I should just continue editing, following the ArbCom rules. And as I explained to the admin, I also believe that a subset of editors are using the ArbCom ruling to flaunt the rules and own the pages in question. How do I get ArbCom to investigate this matter fully.Smatprt (talk) 21:13, 19 April 2013 (UTC)

FYI - a defining moment came with this interchange, initiated by user:ErrantX, who chastised most everyone,[8] and was answered by the SAQ (Shakespeare Authorship Question) main editor,user:Tom_Reedy, who responded with a defiance and an 'up yours' attitude that has defined this debate.[9]. Similarly, this exchange on Jimbo's page [10] also sums up the issue, with Jimbo even noting that "Someone can come in, adhere to policy perfectly well, and get treated very badly. It's an ugly situation."
So why is it allowed to remain so ugly?Smatprt (talk) 21:16, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
Discretionary sanctions imposed under an ArbCom decision may be appealed on the arbitration enforcement noticeboard (WP:AE), or failing that, to the Arbitration Committee on the clarifications and amendments page. (I'm not commenting on the merits of any such appeal.) Newyorkbrad (talk) 21:26, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
But if the ArbCom procedure was ignored, is the attempted ban even valid? Since appeals are rarely granted, why should an invalid ban even require an appeal? Doesn't that put an incredibly unfair burden on the editor? (Of course, this doesn't address the ongoing decorum problems on these pages. How does one get ArbCom to address that? Smatprt (talk) 21:47, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
Last time I checked, Smarprt, you were still in the middle of discussing this with the admin who implemented it ... did that discussion go beyond the first single exchange, or did you immediately give up? (✉→BWilkins←✎) 22:10, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
No, I am still awaiting a response from the admin on my last comment. No, I have not given up. Maybe he is just uncharacteristically slow to respond. He certainly is quick to ban, though :-)
Frankly due to the internal politics here, the decks are clearly stacked against "the editor" in a case like this. So, I am clearly seeking comments from the greater community (with the vain hope that the nice guys might actually be allowed to finish the race! (That was a joke btw)). Look, I have always found the editors on this page truly uninvolved and have often found their advice helpful. Are you saying I can't ask for comments here (or elsewhere?) while also discussing with the situation with a possibly problematic administrator? If not, what are you saying? Smatprt (talk) 23:05, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
The view of relevant scholars is that Shakespeare wrote the works attributed to him. It would be frustrating for someone dedicated to correcting that view to edit Wikipedia because they would continually run into WP:RS and WP:DUE. However, there are several good editors in that field who work collaboratively to develop content compliant with established policies, and it is more frustrating for them when they have to repeatedly engage in wars of attrition. Naturally those wishing to right great wrongs are unhappy when Wikipedia's snail-like arbitration process finally protects the good editors, but that's the way it is has to be in order to keep the encyclopedia from becoming a soapbox for whoever lasts longest. Johnuniq (talk) 00:46, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
I agree entirely. Much as a stagnant pond is an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes and other disease-transmitting insects, so Wikipedia's governance structure promotes the cancerous growth of mini-cabals composed of POV warriors, editors using ArbCom for political advantage, abusive administrators, and anyone who has come to this encyclopedia and stayed here for the conflict and policymaking. As much as Wikipedia prides itself on having minimal bureaucracy, it only has minimal public bureaucracy—private bureaucracies are alive and well, subverting those of true value to the encyclopedia for their own ends. Unfortunately, the content builders of the encyclopedia can no longer bear this burden. Centralized governance with authority, including hiring, sanctioning, and firing of admins by an Admin Review Committee, as well as content review committees for contentious topics such as Israel, Iran, and Alternative medicine, need to be created urgently. Although this will create new bureaucracy, it will be inherently far more efficient (Admin Review Committee eliminates abusive-admin cabals, content review committees can deal with POV warriors quickly) than the current system, the benefits of coordination from a central body notwithstanding.

Of course, my proposal deals only with intractable disputes for which local, consensus-based solutions have not yet been found. However, it will (given that Wikipedia's political structure has been hijacked almost from the beginning by the aforementioned cabals) be met with vociferous opposition from the same groups whose powers will be stripped. I hope that in the end a proposal similar to the one I have made here and in other places is eventually fleshed out and passed. Given the sorry state of Wikipedia's politics, though, I would consider such a proposal to be almost a gift from God.

On the topic of Shakespeare, though, I am entirely convinced that all of the works firmly attributed to him are, indeed, by Shakespeare. Wer900talk 01:15, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

This is an FA article. Smatrprt made this edit in which he (a) refused to comply with policy on citation template uniformity for FA articles, though he's watched that page for over 2 years (b)introduced non-RS, one by a Russian mathematician with no knowledge of Elizabethan scholarship and (c) links to abstracts of two scholarly articles which he patently had not read, since they do not support, if read, the point Smatprt was endeavouring to make. It is a bad-faith edit, one of several hundreds made over several years, performed with ineffable good formal manners, (passive-aggressive) in order to stir controversy so we must engage him on the talk page in endless justification and to get serious editors to do the hard homework he invariably refuses to do. We went and did that work. I reverted it. The point, that Smatprt’s edit was made without his even troubling to examine the materials he googled, was made by myself and especially User:Paul Barlow here. That was the straw that broke the camel’s back: citing ‘evidence’ in a contentious edit that failed verification. It showed that Smatprt, as in the past, creates ‘drama’ by any device, and then drags us all into hours of background research which, however, cannot get past his endless cavilling. He challenges known policy, asks for it to be cited when he violates it (here and here), and when the proof is given, just moves on to another point of fictitious contention. He tries to remove the evidence provided for his egregious oversights, by pretending the proof is a personal attack, and is overruled correctly by an administrator. When this tactical trouble-making earns him a reproof, he scours the wiki manual on technical procedures to catch out the admin on some minor point, and draw the whole of the encyclopedia back into his theatrical scenario of unfair victimization by a coterie. This whole victimized prima donna scenario has been played out endlessly. It usually means he goes to the boards and with extreme attention to good manners, appeals to 'neutral' outsiders for a 'fair deal', asking for more attention. He may have a minor point that a few of us show exasperation, esp. those who got the article to FA status despite his intransigent obstructionism, but most of the dozen or more editors and admins protecting that FA page from damage appear to implicitly concur that his edits consist only of disruptive niggling. He has yet to show that he is committed to the goals of Wikipedia, since he has failed over several years to make any attempt at substantially improving the few articles he has worked on. Wikipedia is not a place for theatrics, Smatprt's professional background, nor for idle blogging to no purpose on fringe topics. Nishidani (talk) 08:31, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
You lost me at "this is an FA article" — as if that somehow makes it immune to editing by "the rabble" — and then carping about failure to use uniform citation templates as if that is a sanctionable offense, which is Manual of Style worship run amuck... You wanna know why hell will freeze over before I ever willingly submit my work to the GA/FA bureaucratic homogenization machine, there you go. Carrite (talk) 16:05, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
It was a succinct synthesis of 7al years work to give outside editors some (admittedly partial) background. What's the problem? The people who wrote it are used to reading several books and articles a week, and it shows in their (as opposed to the plaintiff's) editing. This is not us agin the rabble. It is scholarship against theatrical grandstanding. I know the twitter generation gets fatigue after 142 bytes, but . . .Nishidani (talk) 17:04, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
And it's ironic you read this as 'rabble quelling'. The whole point of this incessant disturbance arises from the activism of a proponent of a fringe theory according to which the rabble, that Stratford butcher or woolstapler's son without a wealthy background or uni degree, couldn't have written the works: only an aristocrat could manage that order of genius. Phew!Nishidani (talk) 17:12, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Yet again there is another discussion about the abuses of Arbcom and their sanctions by admins because overtly vague description of the Broad discretion rule that allows admins to basically do whatever they want. Again, a blocked editor is referred to Arbitration enforcement, which is a 2 part problem. First, a blocked user can only edit their own talk page, not the AE noticeboard, a catch 22 situation to be sure. Second, there is only one admin, Sandstein, who patrols AE. This Admin is well known to favor the extreme end of the spectrum, never admits fault feeling that their actions are above reproach and never as far as I have ever seen is willing to reconsider their decisions. This leaves the users no way out. They are frequently banned from the community for a minor infraction that frequently has a very distant link to the sanction, broadly construed and the pedia is the one suffering. Everyone thinks I am mad but Arbcom and AE are as much a problem in the pedia as any vandal here. Editors and admins are afraid to get involved, new editors are deterred from editing, current long term editors are being banned at an alarming rate and I have been reduced to being thought of as a fool because I have the gaul to question why we allow it to continue. Jimmy, its up to you. If you are even remotely serious about changing the editing conditions in Wikipedia that everyone from the top to the bottom of the organization agree is a problem, its up to you to fix. Kumioko (talk) 19:13, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
If you think that Wikipedia suffers by topic banning Smatprt, I encourage you to screw your courage to the sticking-place and take a week or so out of your life and delve deeply into his contributions. I also encourage you to compare the current state of the Shakespeare authorship question page with the state it was in when he controlled it. Before several editors refused to be run off by his tactics, he controlled several SAQ-related pages by bullying, misrepresenting policy, and attrition, the very things he complains about now, because his inability to manage his bias prevents him from understanding that other editors could have different motives than his. He cannot see what is really happening, i.e. the pages are being edited in conformance to Wikipedia policies and procedures, which admittedly are antagonistic to the promotion of fringe theories, which is Smatprt's only agenda.
The biggest defect I see in the process is the inordinate length of time it takes to get rid of such editors, mainly because they are so canny about manipulating the process and recruiting naive editors to think that their viewpoints are being censored. Tom Reedy (talk) 19:59, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Smatprt is not blocked. He is topic banned. That's why he can edit here. He can also edit elsewhere on Wikipedia, as long as his edits do not address the so-called "Shakespeare authorship question". I have had experience of Smatprt's edits over many years. I can sincerely say that I believe he is not here to serve the aims of the project. He is only interested in marketing his POV. He will use any technique he thinks he can get away with to achieve that goal. I'm not saying this because it's the "official" position of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, which I am instructed to repeat. I have no connection whatever with the SBT or with any Shakespearean organisation. Indeed some of my colleagues treat me with suspicion because of my involvement with this topic. This debate seem to be an occasion for editors with a wider dispute unrelated to the topic to air their grievances - at least that's how it looks to me. Paul B (talk) 20:21, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
I wil add that Tom is perfectly correct about Smatprt's editing. Please look at his contributions over the years. The Shakespeare authorship question became a featured article largely because of Tom's hard work. Since Smatprt became active once more, he had tried to transform it into the the mess it was before Tom became involved. Paul B (talk) 20:28, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

What a load of poppycock. I tried to change one or two words and tried to change half a sentence in the SAQ article,[11] and fatally erred by being sloppy with my references (which I totally admit). In the Edward de Vere article, I tried to change one sentence [12] and it took 12,000 words at the NPOV noticeboard before Tom finally agreed to delete one word, and rearrange one sentence. Amazing how Paul, Tom and Nishidani continue to misrepresent things to this community. And yes, it's true - Nishidani reverted several of my edits because the references were not formed up to his satisfaction. Oh my god... ban him for felony formatting! Never mind that one of my so-called "bogus" references was David Chandler - who "obtained his Ph.D at the University of Oxford in 1997 and is presently a lecturer in English at Kyoto University. He specializes in British Romanticism. He has published in many journals, including Notes and Queries, English Language Notes, Romanticism on the Net, The Charles Lamb Bulletin, The Wordsworth Circle and Studies in Bibliography. Never mind that Prof. Chandler is quoted in other articles. But Tom, Paul and Nishidani don't like what the Professor has to say, so he is removed for bogus reasons such as "formatting" or "not RS". yet they happily reference the blogs of writers they do like. Hypocrisy... they name it Wiki-shakespeareans. Smatprt (talk) 21:03, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

  • Wow... Nishidani. That[13] is one of the longest lies I've ever seen. Impressive. Smatprt (talk) 22:53, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Did I lie in saying that you introduced as sources two papers by Merriam that you plainly hadn't read? Did I lie in noting that you refuse to waste two minutes of your time (as we waste hours in actually reading books and writing articles comprehensively) to copy and paste a very simple template all had agreed on as the standard for the article? Tom politely asked you to do so here on the 27 February. You said you might consider it, only to ignore thr request. Two weeks later, you placed that dreadful blob of unread material on the page, still unformatted, apparently because you think 2 minutes of your time was more important than the hour or two other editors were then required to spend checking the sources you dumped there. You didn't read it, we did. Trivial, of course. But part of a pattern. We work, you play, that's your gambit. Third parties may glance at this, a few minutes of their lives, and ponder over some potential injustice that requires urgent rectification to assuage an editor's injured amour-propre, of course. Several of us have had to deal with this otiose nitpicking for years, and while no one who works here seriously expects any special consideration, it does not help their motivation to write an encyclopedia if frivolous complaints are made day and night whingeing about grievances, and distracting them from the hard work of reading and editing into endless blog-like dramatics over some issue of 'victimization'.Nishidani (talk) 10:29, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

Censoring the FBI

An ironic twist on our recent discussion of intelligence agencies and censorship can be found at Talk:Boston_Marathon_bombings#RFC:_Include_FBI_photos.3F. Some people actually insisted that we should not include photos distributed by the FBI of the terror suspects because of BLP - and things were taken to such an extreme that the article was briefly full-protected, with some admins claiming the right to edit despite full-protection. Now, when we defiantly claim the right to document sensitive installations, I don't think we should be turning around and telling the government that printing some of their most highly notable wanted posters is unethical! At best we look like terrorist stooges. Since you were instrumental in BLP in the first place, and can exercise some moral suasion over ArbCom, would you be willing to do something to establish as a principle, interpretation or formal policy that yes, we should be free to include any relevant FBI wanted posters and similar photos the moment they are announced? Wnt (talk) 17:24, 19 April 2013 (UTC)

I don't think Jimbo can legitimately do more than express an opinion here. Regarding the issue, my own feeling is that we should follow the Principle of Least Stupidity. Ask yourself, would it be possible to explain the policy to somebody unfamiliar with Wikipedia and get them to think it is reasonable? If not, the policy is probably wrong. Looie496 (talk) 17:34, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
I think rhetoric like "At 'best' we look like terrorist stooges" is not helpful. That's actually one of the worst interpretations, one which we all know to not be true. I do absolutely agree with you that there is something inexplicable and wrong about an argument that says we can and should defiantly document sensitive installations (if there are reliable sources) but that we can't engage in which is clearly and obviously not a BLP violation. I'm having a hard time even understanding what the BLP argument looks like and would love to have it explained it its best form. I'm also having a hard time grasping what the anti-fair-use objection is, and would love to have it explained in its best form. Neither of them seem at all compelling to me.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:26, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
I accept your rebuke - indeed, on reexamination I realize that "stooge" is not as unambiguously defined as an unwitting dupe as I'd thought it was. To summarize the arguments at the discussion linked:
  • WP:NOTNEWS prohibits up-to-date information/unencyclopedic
  • WP:BLPCRIME prohibits identifying specific people as suspects until they are proven guilty, or at least charged with a crime, particularly if they are relatively unknown
  • We could be participating in creating another Richard Jewell/too speculative
  • Photos of blurry, unknown people don't show anything important
  • FBI is not the copyright holder and has no right to release the photos/NFCC rationale would be required/invalid
But of course I think all of these are invalid, and personally support including everything we can lay hands on in both scenarios above, so I'm not really the one to make their case. Wnt (talk) 19:47, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
As I mentioned earlier today, I could somewhat be persuaded by WP:NOTNEWS. It at least seems like an argument could be made.
WP:BLPCRIME absolutely does not "prohibit identifying specific people as suspects until they are proven guilty, or at least charged with a crime". That just is not what it says, at all. The relevant part is this: " For people who are relatively unknown, editors must give serious consideration to not including material in any article suggesting that the person has committed, or is accused of committing, a crime unless a conviction is secured." The current case passes this quite easily on all counts. (1) These guys are not "relatively unknown" anymore, for better or worse. This is not a mere local crime such that there's no encyclopedic reason to discuss them. This is extremely well known. (2) Even if someone doesn't agree with that, all that is required that we must "give serious consideration to" - not an absolute prohibition on anything. And importantly, (3) we are supposed to give serious consideration to not including material which suggests that they have committed or are accused of committing a crime. Well, sure, we shouldn't do that, because in a formal sense it just isn't true. What is true is that the FBI has called them suspects and asked the public to keep an eye out for them. An exact quote from the FBI, as verified in reliable sources, would make it clear that we are not overreaching by actually suggesting or accusing them ourselves.
Moving on to the next one, it would be too speculative if we said that they did it, or overreached in any way. But it is absolutely not speculative in the least to say that the FBI has released these photos and asks people to look out for them. That's a stone cold fact, as verifiable as anything in Wikipedia can ever be.
And finally, this is precisely the kind of case where NFCC rationale is strongest. The 4 factor legal test is overwhelmingly met. When we are illustrating the statement that "the FBI released pictures of the suspects" there is no possible non-free alternative. (There would be a much much weaker case for using a photo not released by the FBI for their manhunt purposes, i.e. using a random shot of them that we found on flickr, let's say.)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:01, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
"These guys are not 'relatively unknown' anymore, for better or worse". Isn't that a bit tautological, Jimbo? They were relatively unknown before this and would not be "well-known" now except for this. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 21:08, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
Yes, me, the wording of WP:BLPCRIME seems a bit off here. See, if the FBI is accusing someone of committing a crime, and has declared them Wanted, and CNN, Fox, the BBC, and MSNBC have all reported that fact, then BLPCRIME should not prevent us from reporting that verifiable fact. We just have to not accuse them ourselves. The article can say "the FBI has declared that so-and-so is a suspect and issued a Wanted notice." It just can't say "so-and-so is the perpetrator" until conviction. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 23:00, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
Unfortunately, reports are already going on about how these are "Muslim terrorists" because Chechens are for the most part Muslim. Pass a Method talk 23:22, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
I watched "Uncle Ruslan's" press conference. He said they were Muslim. Were they Islamists? That's not verifiable. - Jorgath (talk) (contribs) 23:50, 19 April 2013 (UTC)
This morning the BBC released a report about how Muslims were hoping the suspects would not be Muslim out of fear of any backlash. These suspects are almost certainly Muslim so their hopes are lost. Lets now hope there is no backlash against Muslims now. Pass a Method talk 23:56, 19 April 2013 (UTC)

I don't think you're reading BLPCRIME correctly. Being "relatively unknown" should mean "being relatively unknown for reasons other than the crime".
And "it's okay because we're not accusing them ourselves" is wrong. The rule isn't there just as a series of hoops to jump through; the rule is there to avoid spreading accusations prematurely and possibly being complicit in creating another Richard Jewell. Reporting that another person made an accusation spreads accusations prematurely just as much as making the accusation ourselves.
Also, I read "or is accused of committing" as an attempt to explicitly spell out that we're not allowed to use the excuse "but we just reported an accusation made by someone else". It says that we can't even report that someone is accused, because if it didn't say that, some people just won't get it and will use "it's someone else's accusation" as an excuse to spread the accusation. Ken Arromdee (talk) 18:51, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

I rarely comment here, but because I had a small hand in writing BLPCRIME, I'll comment on the relatively unknown aspect. Putting aside wikilawyering the policy, I don't think it's quite as black and white as Jimbo or Ken is making it out to be, although I agree with Jimbo's conclusion and analysis in this particular instance. A well-known figure, say a national politician, would be fair game. A person no one's ever heard of would not. Generally, the person would have to be well-known independent of the crime. But if the crime itself is widely publicized, it transforms the previously unknown person into a well-known person. In this particular case, the brothers are fair game for reporting arrests, accusations, charges, etc. (I do agree with Ken generally about reporting accusations.)--Bbb23 (talk) 19:07, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, the general principle that is worth expressing, even codifying, is that the mere fact that the FBI or another major crime agency is circulating a photo is in and of itself sufficient to make the suspect - who may otherwise be unidentified and unknown - sufficiently well known to cover. When we start debating the ethics of whether we should acknowledge the existence of a wanted poster we've gotten to the point where we're better off without ethics. Wnt (talk) 19:24, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
You have a dramatic way of expressing yourself. Your specific and narrow point, though, about BLPCRIME is flawed.--Bbb23 (talk) 19:56, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
There is some frustration on my part, and I think some others, about how the Boston Marathon bombings article was handled, the surveillance photo being the most extreme example. There were similar arguments over whether to name the victims well after the names were widespread. The NOTNEWS and general precaution principles were on overdrive and valid, well sourced information (and that's all I'm talking about; I'm not referring to fringe or non reliable source information that was correctly excluded) was delayed in its inclusion, often arbitrarily, as a result. In almost each instance it was eventually included. This is not a problem with policy, but one of practice. In this particular case I think many editors applied the policies incorrectly (for a time), BLPCRIME most notably. There's probably more to say on the topic, but I'll leave it at that for now. Shadowjams (talk) 20:24, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
  • It is easy to look back with 20/20 hindsight and say what should have been included, and there is no shortage of armchair admin at Wikipedia. When you are actually working the talk page of the article and trying to keep up with the actual news, the edits, the questions and the problems that birngs, it is a different story. You are dealing with dozens of people editing per minute, many of them flatly wrong, some are vandalism or POV, many of them sourced but there are contradictory sources, many of them are potential BLP issues, but people want to pop up the information on the page the very second the first source prints it, without concern that half the information will be retracted soon. In this environment, raising the bar for inclusion is the only sane thing to do. We should not be so concerned about being timely, and put our focus on being accurate and fair. This necessitates that we are behind the sources to publish, but that is the very nature of an encyclopedia. We err on the conservative side because wrong information is more damaging than a lack of information. We have no obligation to be timely, but we do have an obligation to be correct. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 00:56, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
That's all well and good, but I was there, and it wasn't hindsight at the time. So while you're right with the boilerplate stuff, everybody reading here knows that already. I don't think you were particularly at fault Dennis--we disagreed on a few points but that's to be expected. My complaint can't be dismissed simply as hindsight bias. I'm trying to explain a more nuanced point: that there was a breakdown in this case, without claiming it's a policy problem or delving into excessive detail to demonstrate it. Shadowjams (talk) 12:00, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Hindsight bias isn't the sole issue, but it does exist and it is helpful if we remember that. That is true of any "event", it is human nature. The problem is that during such a storm of editing, any persons that are acting in a purely clerking or administrative fashion (like I was there, not editing the article itself) are flooded with information and edits. There is no way for anyone to keep up with it all. This is why my goal is always to slow down the process long enough for there to be actual discussion. It is very deliberate on my part. When there is a reasonable concern about BLP, it is better to slow down even more. Our being 6 hours behind the sources is a trivial matter. If it were up to me, I would implement a policy saying we only use a source after it has aged at least an hour or two for hot events like this, due to the sheer volume of retractions and corrections. We are an encyclopedia, and anyone that wants up to the second information should be hitting up the news websites, not us. If we prematurely publish bad info because of impatience, those things can come back to haunt us. We don't need bad press about how irresponsible we acted, as our credibility is more important than our swiftness. And for the record, I had no issue with your participation, even on the points we disagreed on. You know how to vigorously debate a point without crossing the line, which was helpful. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 12:50, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
We're in a damned if we do, damned if we don't situation; I fully understand the motivation for the delay. Usually these breaking events are morbid in some way (it's rarely some great new discovery or triumph of humanity) but I think we've been getting good at dealing with them generally. And I think in the past I've been on the hold-off side more too... I just think there were some instances here that got some groupthink going early and they missed the big picture, which became clear once some time passed. I said something along these lines earlier... I suspect some editors that would like an automatic delay on breaking news stories. Maybe 6 hours, maybe 24, whatever. This article's the first one that I've worked on where I noticed that, although I'm sure others would demonstrate it too. I think that's a poor policy idea, but if someone wanted to float that as a policy idea, that would be the right way to do it.
I've been speaking globally here, and (as I think you know) I don't mean any of this towards you Dennis (other than what I said at the time :)). Ultimately these rough edges get worked out, often quite quickly. I think we had some failings here, but none of them are fatal. I would like to fix what I see as problems, but I'm acutely aware that we're talking about improving at the margins; we do a lot right already that we take for granted. Shadowjams (talk) 14:03, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Indeed, heavy is the head that wears the crown of ownership of an article everyone is interested in. That is why my proposal here was limited to one straightforward, universal ruling we could make to lighten that load. When the FBI circulates a wanted poster, we should not have to argue the ethics of whether it is OK to include it. We should simply ask, is it reliably sourced, is it relevant to this article, and be ready to go. Wnt (talk) 14:54, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

Does neutrality extend to the citation section"

Is this citation section neutral? [14] It seems to me to be the most one-sided and opinionated set of "citations" ever collected on one page. I thought Featured Articles were supposed to be the model of neutrality. Smatprt (talk) 22:57, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

Following a neutral point of view means that all views are represented in proportion to the levels at which they are held by qualified experts. As an example, the theory of evolution and anthropogenic global warming would be regarded as true, because overwhelming majorities of biologists and climatologists (and, more generally, vast majorities of scientists and educated people generally) agree with those views. In such a case, the views of the small number of dissenters should be mentioned and expounded upon, but not given great prominence at the expense of the generally accepted theory. The Shakespeare authorship question is no exception; efforts should be made to add sources representing the general view of literary historians, rather than necessarily attempting to find equal amounts of pro- and anti-Shakespearean sources. Would it be considered neutral to fish for sources that favored creationism and give said sources equal prominence to those favoring evolution, despite the overwhelming support in the sources for the latter view? Wer900talk 23:39, 20 April 2013 (UTC)
Threads like this are not going to help your efforts to weasel out of yet another topic ban. Resolute 00:01, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Just for the record, what Smatprt complains of as not neutral happens to be a short summation of the kinder judgements of scholars. A substantial number of quotations by academics likening the theory Smatprt is valiently promoting to 'the lunatic fringe', or as forms of 'speculative madness' (e.g. here and here) were, by discretion, withheld from the page.Nishidani (talk) 10:56, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

Taking advantage

And now the smear continues. Some context for the uninvolved editors: On the day after I was banned a year ago, user:Tom_Reedy took advantage of my absence, added this smear to the opening line of the article: "Although he had a reckless, unpredictable, and violent nature that precluded him attaining any court or government responsibility and led to the ruination of his estate,..."[15].

A year later, I raised the issue at the NPOV noticeboard[16] and the line was finally changed ever so slightly (Tom refused to budge any further). Then, upon my most recent ban, Tom deleted the article NPOV tag and called off the NPOV Noticeboard discussion.[17], declaring that "This discussion is now moot unless some other editor cares to pick up the torch."

Next, as soon as I was banned, Tom deleted this material (which didn't quite gibe with his preferred version of events): "In later years Burghley was to upbraid Oxford frequently for his prodigal extravagance. However, he allowed the young Earl to spend upwards of £1,000 per annum during the wardship: his tailor's bills alone, from the age of 12 to 16, totalled some £600[18]

Tom then slipped this additional smear into the article lead:

"He fell out of favour with the Queen in the early 1580s and was exiled from court after impregnating one of her Maids of Honour, Anne Vavasour, which instigated violent street brawls between Oxford's retainers and her uncle's. Oxford was reconciled to the Queen in 1583, but all opportunities for advancement had been lost. In 1586 the Queen granted Oxford a £1,000 annuity to relieve his financial distress caused by his extravagance and selling off his income-producing lands for ready money. After his wife's death he married Elizabeth Trentham, one of the Queen's Maids of Honour, with whom he got an heir, Henry de Vere".[19]

No discussion. No consensus. Just continued one-sided negative edits against Tom's favorite whipping boy, ignoring historical context as well as mitigating factors mentioned by Tom's own sources (but ignored in Tom's version). And these actions are condoned by the same group of administrators that participated in the ArbCom case. What a sham. Smatprt (talk) 21:28, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

De Vere is a minor character in Elizabethan history. The most comprehensive modern biography of him, and several specialist sources, describe him as having a 'reckless, unpredictable, and violent nature.' That was documented, and you got extremely upset, and opened up that humongous thread to attenuate the description or 'get consensus' from 'neutral editors' who haven't ploughed through the thousand odd pages of Nelson, May, and even Ward's books and articles, and tend to look on with kind advice about reaching some compromise that ignores what the sources say. Your problem is that, since he is the object of a fetishistic adulation in fringe circles, that take him to be the real Shakespeare, and worthy of bardolatry, any attempt by editors to describe negative aspects of his historical behaviour are read as WP:BLP violations, and not, as they are, reflections of how modern scholarship assesses his character. He is dead, you know. To overidentify with this de Vere, whom the historical record treats somewhat severely, very easily lends itself to thinking that you yourself are treated as poorly as he was whenever people disagree with your unique estimation of him. p.s. I really do not think we should be worrying this page by adducing snippets of our disagreements for Mr Wales' adjudication. The impression is given that you will exhaust talk pages, run to the noticeboards, cry scandal over any sanction at the AE page, and then go up the hierarchy to the final court of appeal over what are trivial content issues.Nishidani (talk) 09:58, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
This shows why there absolutely has to be some sort of centralized governance as I mentioned earlier. POV pushers will inevitably try to introduce one-sided and sometimes patently false stories into articles, and are without a proper institutional framework for dealing with them able to bring their disputes to the Arbitration Committee and Jimbo's talk page. Such actions are not conducive to the growth of the encyclopedia, and establishing content review committees for contentious subjects, created at the request of two editors, involved or uninvolved, and composed of editors with experience creating content in the field, whose decisions are appealable to a Content Subcommittee of ArbCom in severe cases, would help greatly in curtailing them. There's no real way of dealing with content disputes until they become civility disputes, and such actions inevitably lead to watered-down, superficial ArbCom cases which do nothing about the underlying content. Those who do the real work of editing Wikipedia are constantly held hostage at the behest of editors like Smartprt and the small POV-based cabals which dominate the workings of this encyclopedia, not to mention the self-interested power-hungry groups which have hijacked Wikipedia's ostensibly community-based decision-making process.

When an editor ceases to contribute to articles, but instead writes only in the Wikipedia space, on talk pages, and arbitration cases, and when more than half of that editor's contributions are in conflicts, either beginning or prolonging them: then that editor is very close to departure. As with stars on the main sequence, some departures are shrinkings into dwarf states, with ever diminishing contributions, giving little light, and with a long decay; and other departures are violent supernova explosions, spewing waste matter and hot gas in all directions. —Antandrus, Observations on Wikipedia Behavior

Unfortunately, the stars which go supernova create neutron stars and black holes, sucking away the valuable main-sequence content contributors in their vicinity. Only centralized governance as I described in the previous thread, and content review committees as described above as the first step, can stem the loss of content contributors. Wer900talk 18:28, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

RfC on BP

There is a request for comment how much weight should be given to the Clean Water Act Trial in the BP article. This is not an usual place to put the RfC notice but placing the notice in recommended places (WP:NPOVN, WP:VPM, WP:Energy and WP:Companies) has created almost no input from uninvolved editors. This is pity taking account all this noise this article get just a month ago. The issue, although the wording of the RfC is limited to the Clean Water Act trial, is broader reflecting the fundamental difference in understandings how to interpret WP:DUE. Taking account the tense atmosphere around this article, which has gone for a year, a fresh looks from uninvolved editors are needed. Beagel (talk) 09:05, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Gibraltar DYK

It feels like pro-Gibraltar editors a still abusing DYK. Maybe I am wrong, I have not followed 'the drama' much. But after I made an intervention in a DYK I get that feeling. I am not good in dealing with this WP conflicts, I hate the long written discussions (I got into a few, yes, that's how I know I hate them :-), I hate the lot of "small dictators" WP generates. I mean, typically each "corner" is ruled by a handful of editors owning it, bashing out, and shouting away any intruders, "per consensus". So for the sake of my time management, and my health, I'll drop it. But I ask you to take look at Did you know nominations/Twelfth Siege of Gibraltar, please. Thanks - Nabla (talk) 08:52, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

  • Nabla, we have asked you several times to look at the DYK process guidelines (and pointed them to you). If you want to avoid 'the drama', it may be a good idea to read the replies you are getting, the vast majority of which have been made in good faith. Ignoring the replies and sticking to your opinion which, although you are welcome to it, is entirely against the consensus that has been established (linked at the nom) and the DYK guidelines (also linked at the nom) and is bound to bring on 'the drama'. Especially when your definition of conflict of interest and advertising is so wide that it could apply to anything, anywhere, as already indicated at the nomination page (which you promptly dismissed out of hand, stating that those other topics were not under editing restrictions while patently ignoring that nothing is under the editing restrictions that you want applied in this case, not even Gibraltar). If you think that a blanket ban should be applied, and that consensus has changed, start a discussion at WT:DYK. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 10:08, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
    • Probably worth also pointing out that this appears to be Nabla's first ever review of a DYK nomination.[20] WP:COMPETENCE applies, I guess. Prioryman (talk) 10:15, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Agree, but I'm wondering if Nabla failed to read and comprehend the implications of this posted guideline: "Note: No more than one Gibraltar hook should appear on the main page in any 24-hour period". Seems pretty clear that Gibraltar hooks are permitted, despite whatever problems have occurred with them. --Idontnodi (talk) 11:41, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Here they came, predictable like a Swiss clock, pounding on. I rest my case.
Oh! Just one more pointer: "the vast majority done in good faith"?! So some small minority are admittedly done in bad faith? Wow! Not that I did not suspect it, but I was not hoping for such a open admission. - Nabla (talk) 13:20, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Here who came? I've not been involved in any way, and so I looked at your dispute. I don't see others willfully or incompetently ignoring collaboration and posted guidelines. --Idontnodi (talk) 14:15, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
They, equals Crisco and Prioryman, which came in shouting out yet another guideline, policy. I was not refering to you. That is obvious for anyone reading the linked page, but I agree it is best to highlight that here, for the benefit of those who do not and for clarity sake. I am sorry, please accept my apologies, I was not pointing at you. I had enough of this silliness, but I guess you deserve a reply, so: I read the no more than one per 24h guideline; that is a upper limit, it sets no lower limit and it is not the only Gibraltar specific guideline, so it was not relevant for my review. Nabla (talk) 15:35, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
It doesn't set a lower limit because there isn't a lower limit. Surely that's clear enough? Prioryman (talk) 15:38, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Hmmm... "it sets no lower limit", I said. - Nabla (talk) 21:26, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
(edit conflict) I did the same, Idontnodi, but Nabla doesn't seem interested in anything that doesn't agree with him or her. BlueMoonset (talk) 15:43, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
@Nabla. You wrote: "The problem is not any sentence in the article, the problem is yet another Gibraltar article in DYK." Isn't pretty obvious to you and others that rationale which you gave is in direct conflict with the guideline though? --Idontnodi (talk) 15:50, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
The fundamental problem is that Nabla and the community are in conflict; Nabla apparently believes there should be a total ban on Gibraltar-related DYKs, but the community does not (that suggestion was overwhelmingly rejected the last time it was put to a vote only a couple of months ago). It's wrong to hijack a DYK review to try to impose a personal policy preference against consensus, and it's doubly wrong to accuse hugely experienced DYK contributors like BlueMoonset and Crisco of "abusing DYK". It's a textbook example of assuming bad faith. Coming from a regular editor it would be concerning, coming from an admin it's reprehensible. I'm seriously wondering how Nabla got their sysop bit with such an attitude. Prioryman (talk) 16:22, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Nabla also disapproves of the community's views on image licensing, to the extent that Nabla, according to their userpage, will never again upload an image to Wikipedia. Nabla also disapproved of the SOPA blackout to such an extent that they resigned their admin bit... but then changed their mind and requested it back again. There are many, many instances where Nabla and the community disagree. However, so long as Nabla continues to use their sysop bit responsibly - which they have done so far - there's no immediate need to take action. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 20:13, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Nabla's oppose of the nomination appears to be "because it's about Gibraltar", which is not a reason and their opinion should be, thus, ignored. SilverserenC 21:04, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

Prioryman, I repeatedly said I do not want to ban this or any DYK nomination based only on my opinion. So please don't say otherwise.
Demiurge1000, thank you, looks like there is still a few out there respecting different opinions.
Jimmy, and All, I was only interested in one thing: to give my opinion. I expected it to be respected. I also expected it to be disagreed, yes. And most likely defeated on a vote, or whatever similar process. I did not expect this, Prioryman and Crisco accuse me of just about everything, adding one more at every sentence.
I'll give yet another try in explaining my reasoning:
The DYK page asks for input on promotional and COI concerns about the article under review. I did just that (not with the best style, maybe, but I was trying to be short and incisive)
I bet no article about Gibraltar, or anything by that matter, never had a content as "Gibraltar is just the coolest guys! Visit and then tell your friends!" (which is Crisco's sample of what should be a promotional article!), nor any article ever asked readers to buy, visit, use anything. Nevertheless, there was a decision to keep a close watch on "promotional concerns". How come? Because there was a large series of positive Gibraltar related articles, combined with other external stuff. So the promotional issue was not on any article, and can not be analysed based on any article alone, but in context. I stated, and explained (even after Crisco's started to shout out "POINTy disruption" accusations), that in such context, an article with content appealing to a probable target audience of tourism in Gibraltar (UK citizen's), looks like having promotional issues.
As to the COI, I have not accused anyone of personal benefit. I only said that, based on Prioryman's extensive campaigning for the lifting of restrictions on Gibraltar DYKs, he is too close to the subject to assess it clearly.
I don't expect anyone to agree with me (well, I hope someone does... :-). I simply still hope that editors understand that it is just that, one opinion, based on my view of some facts.
Possibly the main problem is with DYK's procedures, that I admit not to be used to (yes, first time I gave an opinion there, that I recall of). I presumed I could give my opinion, some other editors would agree, disagree, complement, etc., and the world would keep on turning quietly, just about as in most places in WP. Any opinion, if clearly minoritary, is listened to, but things get done according to the majority, rightly so, and mostly peacefully. Why not there?
Apparently it is not so in DYK nominations...? Is it is enough to have one "oppose" opinion to block a DYK nomination? If it is so, then the process is badly broken. - Nabla (talk) 21:26, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
Thank you for your comments. I have reviewed them. After reviewing your comments, by your own standards, you are too close to the subject to assess it clearly. I therefore ask you to refrain from further comment. Thank you! --Demiurge1000 (talk) 21:43, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
I think what's happening here is a misunderstanding of DYK's rules. When it is talking about assessing promotional concerns, it means does the article as written have promotional writing in it, is it non-neutral in its information. It doesn't mean are the reasons behind it being written promotional. That's because the reasons why something is written should be completely irrelevant, so long as the article is well-written, neutral, and covers all the relevant information with due weight. As I remember someone saying once, it wouldn't matter if Satan himself was the one writing the articles, so long as he was writing them properly. SilverserenC 21:46, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
I think it's more than that. The trigger for all of this appears to be that a couple of weeks ago I asked Nabla for their views on when and how the existing restrictions should be lifted, as they had previously participated in a discussion on the matter [21]. It's dismaying that my attempt to reach out and politely find out what their concerns were, so that they could be resolved, has met with this response. The idea that the Twelfth Siege of Gibraltar article was written for "a probable target audience of tourism in Gibraltar" is pure fantasy - it was written simply to fill in the last red link on Siege of Gibraltar (before its recent redirection). Nabla's claims about DYK being "abused", editors behaving like "dictators" and articles being written for "probable audiences" are based on bad-faith assumptions, not misunderstandings about DYK's rules. It'd be nice if Nabla could apologise, though to be honest I don't really expect that to happen. Prioryman (talk) 22:09, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

For reasons that need not be rehashed here, there may be good reason to be sensitive to the possibility of overcoverage of Gibraltar on the main page. There are two separate arguments that could be offered for this, one of which arises from the possibility that Wikipedia could be misused for purposes of promotion or advertising, and the other of which is a meta version of the proscription against giving undue weight to a given aspect of a topic. Here, the article content does not appear promotional, and it appears (I'm subject to being corrected if I'm wrong) that the main page has not recently been accused of Gibraltarcentricity. Hence, while I can understand where Nabla's original concern stems from, I think the ordinary DYK process can be trusted in this instance. The discussion above of the merits of Nabla's personal opinions on other wiki topics is irrelevant. Newyorkbrad (talk) 22:31, 21 April 2013 (UTC)

Thank you. At least one person understands what I am saying, even while disagreeing with it. Looks like I am not completely out of my mind. Again, Thank you! - Nabla (talk) 23:39, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Let's boil this down to simple facts and draw a conclusion
  1. Fact: All editors, including admins, are to abide by consensus, guidelines, and policies
    Fact: Consensus at the last discussion was that no moratorium on Gibraltar DYKs was required or necessary
    Fact: Nabla disagrees with this consensus, as s/he does with several others
    Fact: Nabla has written at least 5,000 characters in defense of his/her position at the DYK nomination and here
    Fact: As of this time stamp, Nabla has yet to initiate a discussion about a possible moratorium at the proper venue, despite being told this was a valid alternative
    Conclusion: Nabla is not abiding by consensus, nor has s/he attempted to create a new one, but has written extensively against the existing consensus at various pages, including the DYK nomination and this talk page. Current policy is that Nabla should attempt to swallow his/her pride and drop the stick rather than prolonging arguments. As such, Nabla should either a) open a discussion at WT:DYK and look for a new consensus or b) stop for a moment, listen to what some 10 editors have said (not all of them related to DYK), and find other activities. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 23:49, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
I fail to understand the need to continuously bash an editor. You and Prioryman do not agree with me. All very fine. But why misrepresent just about anything I say? Why don't you ear Newyorkbrad, when he says he disagrees with my opinion, but understands it? Please, stop... - Nabla (talk) 00:06, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Misrepresent how? Every fact in the above statement is true, and part of it is based on your own user page. I never said I didn't understand your opinion, and I've told you that I think its fine to have one, but you are also required by policy to follow consensus. You have yet to do this, despite numerous editors pointing out your error. I'm going to stop now, as it appears I am not reaching you no matter how explicitly I write. Enjoy your day. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 00:43, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Sometimes, consensus should be ignored if there is a compelling reason. If a small coterie of editors keep ramming through Gibraltar DYKs week after week after week, to the point where coverage of this island rock is extremely disproportionate to other topics, then that would be one of those compelling reasons. Tarc (talk) 01:10, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
  • The devil is in the detail there. Define "compelling". One mans compelling reason is anothers asassination, revolution, etc, etc. History is full of compelling reasons for ultimately unreasonable actions. I would say it is no less true in our WP sphere. It sounds like a WP licence for a coup in terms of consensus. Not very democratic, and I know its faults, but its the best system we have at this point in our development. I am commenting here of course on the general principle, not on the Ed. who made it. Irondome (talk) 01:18, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Define "extremely disproportionate coverage". There are a number of topics at DYK that have dedicated editors and have a lot of nominations for an otherwise obscure topic. SilverserenC 02:04, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
  • For comparison, there have been no fewer than 115 Indonesia-related DYKs and 112 DYKs about mushrooms in the last year, almost all written by a single editor in each case. Both figures are far higher than the number of Gibraltar-related DYKs over the same period. Prioryman (talk) 06:39, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Does the mushroom guy have a business or associate selling the advantages of mushrooms over LSD as a recreational trip? John lilburne (talk) 10:37, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
No idea and it is completely irrelevant if he does, because he is still writing the articles properly and neutrally. SilverserenC 18:42, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Tarc, nobody is "ramming through" Gibraltar-related DYKs, nor is the number disproportionate by any stretch of the imagination. There was only 1 Gibraltar-related DYK in March and only 2 so far in April, out of approximately 1,100 DYKs that have run in that time. During the most recent discussion on the issue a couple of months ago, a (failed) proposal was made to impose a 3 per month limit. Well, guess what, the number is already below that threshold. The Gibraltarpedia competition is long over - it ended in December - and all we're seeing now is people filling in the occasional red link, as was the case with the DYK that prompted Nabla's intervention. There is no "small coterie of editors" - each of the DYKs was written by a different editor. There is no need, if there ever was, for the continued hysteria, bad-faith claims of "abuse" and demands that consensus should be ignored. And Gibraltar isn't an island. Sheesh. Prioryman (talk) 06:32, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

A barnstar for you!

Original Barnstar Hires.png The Original Barnstar
For wasting my time. Seonookim (What I've done so far) (I'm busy here) (Tell me your requests) 02:32, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

helloooo :) i from wikipedia spanish

hola jimbo te saludo desde lima Peru!!! :,) que alegría que leas mi mensaje, te deseo muchos exitos!!! y que viva wikipedia!!!! :) :) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Carlosandres2000 (talkcontribs) 15:50, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

Template:Citation pending as a way to reduce edit warring and increase self-responsibility

I suggest a new citation link. Template:Citation pending. The purpose of this would be to create a new marker whereby the editor is at that time unable but undertakes to provide a citation within a given period. Citation needed is a fairly blunt instrument, available to anyone and can lead to reversions and subsequent edit wars and general unpleasantness. A red rag to a bull to Eds of the impatient type. I suggest a new cite pending to stop overhasty reversions and to put some self- onus on the editor making such an insertion. I would suggest that after 7 days a bot removes the cite and the added info. A warning or advisory message also is left on the Eds talkpage. Over a certain number edited into mainspace in a given period without being "honoured" would lead to some kind of caution. Maybe the count could be used in "evidence" of an Eds suitability for an Admin/related nomination. In that 7 days no reversion of material covered by that cite insertion would be allowed. It may cut the crap by some measure and focus Eds minds on the wilder edits. A sort of "can I actually back this up?" reality check on Eds. It would not be available to I.Ps. Just a thought people. Irondome (talk) 01:06, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

That's an interesting idea, but I have two concerns: (1) it may have the clearly unintended side effect of seeming to give license to use BLP-violating material for seven days and (2) if the content is sufficiently controversial that people are edit warring over it, and you can't provide a citation today, is it really the end of the world if it just stays out of the article until such time as you are able to provide a citation? --B (talk) 02:06, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I would say that it would be inadmissable for use in BLP related mainspace. Would that be technically possible? With the second point, in general articles there are those Eds who just cant contain themselves, and stick in garbage basically as a kind of twitch. This provokes a cite needed from others, removal of material, readdition, etc etc. I would say cite pending indicates a serious editor. Attacks on cite pending should be treated as vandalism. Its a potential mechanism for sorting the Eds from the potential problem editors too. Irondome (talk) 02:13, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I think it might be useful but utterly oppose giving it any effect of stalling any application of WP:BURDEN. In other words, I would oppose allowing it to have any teeth to stop removal of disputed, unsourced material, and certainly not to give its removal (or the content to which is it appended) a presumption of vandalism, thus effectively reversing the burden. On the other hand, if this gained consensus I could see adding to the existing language at WP:BURDEN a note recommending people provide more leeway when they see this tag in place. BTW, why is this post here, and not at WT:V?--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 02:29, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I basically agree, but I am advocating its usage in terms of peer respected, reliable eds. It would be very obvious if the material finally delivered was merely a stalling measure and that could be noted appripriately. In terms of vandalism, I would suggest that an attack on pending without foreknowledge of the evidence to be presented, esp if the presenting Ed is solid in output, be considered vandalism, esp if the offending ed has a historically tendentious attitude to other eds. I was not aware of WT:Vs existence until now. Im still negotiating my way through the WP maze. Ive found this to be a user friendly space that inspires authoritative responses in good time. Irondome (talk) 02:45, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Why not just put the material in a few days later, when you have time to include an appropriate supporting source? Where's the urgency here? If an editor wants to be reminded to add a source to an article, they can make a note to themselves in their own userspace, or invite others to provide sources on the article's talk page. I'm not sure that giving editors a free hand to declare "I'm sure this is true, and I'll get around to sourcing it later, and you're not allowed to change it because I'm using the magic tag!" is really a good solution to content disputes on controversial topics. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 02:51, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I advocate that there would be penalties for using it improperly or with abandon. If they are overused ansd unsupportable they may be used in admin apps for example. Many Eds do chuck in crap, causing edit wars, in so many mainspaces. This may check them. Please read my initial satement, it covers that aspect. Irondome (talk) 02:54, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I saw that, but I'm not really buying it; I'm sorry. Your proposal privileges controversial content that has no source over controversial content that has poor-to-mediocre sourcing; the former would get a week's free ride in the article, whereas the latter can be removed and is subject to discussion on the article's talk page – and a requirement for consensus – before it can be reinstated. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 03:05, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I cant really see your point here. Both markers indicate a lack of citation. There is no free ride if the cites produced on pending are garbage. In fact the onus on sound citations on pending would be much stronger, and community criticism on talk would be all the greater. And I advocate recording it via a bot. Theres no free ride here, rather a bumpy one if you want to use pending and screw the community around and still be considered a solid WP ed. Irondome (talk) 03:11, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
  • No. The editor inserting the material should simply wait until he can source it.—Kww(talk) 03:15, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
In an ideal world yes. But that isnt the case in real WP world, and such issues cause edit wars and endless drama. The citation needed marker is useless. Ive seen them months old. Pending creates a mechanism of good faith and ownership by the ed, not merely adding nonsense. Its also timebound, and recordable. Its a good measure of a decent Ed too if it could be implemented. Irondome (talk) 03:21, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm not a big fan of "citation needed", either. Editors that knowingly violate WP:V by inserting material without an inline citation after it has been challenged are subject to block at any reviewing admin's discretion. I've certainly blocked editors that do it and encourage all other admins to do it as well. Your edit-warring problem will see an immediate and significant reduction.—Kww(talk) 03:54, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
That is very interesting. I would advocate replacing needed with pending entirely. There should be a clear mechanism for introducing cites after a short well defined period. And it would be a self referring mechanism. It would help to sort out the nonsense. And we would discourage many problem Eds who are with us at this time. At the mo your quoted Admin solution appears to be too arbitary and enforced in a patchy manner. As I say, just thoughts here. Irondome (talk) 04:07, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
The problem is that some people around Wikipedia will go off the deep end. They "challenge" a fact solely because it is unreferenced, even if it seems plausible and probably has lost its citation only due to a rewording that has put the ref a few sentences away. Blocking editors over a simple content dispute like that isn't right.
The difference between "citation needed" and "citation pending" is purely semantic, and of the two, the form that should appear in the article text is the one that sounds less confident, i.e. needed. If behind the scenes here people can actually agree on a hard limit for how long the citation can stay in that state, that's all well and good, but changing it to 'pending' would make the casual reader more likely to imagine that there really is a reference somewhere and someone just has to code it up in the citation template. Wnt (talk) 14:20, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I agree that there are quite a few "source nazis" who, as mentioned above, go around challenging a fact based on nothing more than that it isnt sourced. It not being sourced is not a reason for a challenge. We specifically do NOT go around sourcing every single fact or sentence, nor should the burden be put on someone to do so. What is common sense to one person who is well-versed in the subject may not be common sense to another, and when a legitimate challenge comes to a fact, based on good-faith questioning of whether the fact is true or not and not simply that it does not have a source, THEN burden should apply to give the person who added the fact ample time to find a source. Of course the person who challenges should give the person who added the material some good-faith and yes even take some of the burden of finding a source on their own with at least a cursory google search. If an article has added to it the following sentence- "Amman is the capital of Jordan", that should not be removed based on not having a source, as anyone in 2 seconds can verify that on their own and add a source. So basically- if people use good-faith and civility there would be no need for templates in these cases and everyone can work collaboratively rather than instigating bad-faith and accusations that people are not doing their job or that ONLY one group has the entire burden. Those challenging material need to take on some burden instead of just yelling- UNSOURCED MATERIAL=DELETE!!!! (talk) 18:48, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Since we are required to assume good faith, "challenges are only valid if made in good faith" is in practice the same as "almost any challenges are valid". Ken Arromdee (talk) 15:34, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Good faith is absolutely the wrong criterion here. Generally people challenging facts solely because they are unsourced will be entirely forthright about that being their sole reason. All I want with these challenges is that people have an "iota of suspicion" that the fact isn't right. "It doesn't sound right" or "smells funny" would be reason enough, and I'd take that on good faith. I just want there to be a reason. Wnt (talk) 13:13, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
There is a very blurry continuum of states between "I'm not sure that's right" and "I suspect that might not be right". Choosing the former standard instead of the latter doesn't mean that editors removing unsourced material are editing in bad faith. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 13:39, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
I am not talking about the GF of the challenger. I am getting at the GF of the Ed who wants to add the info. Some eds insert crap, fully aware that the new "facts" are contentious, or even wrong. Citation Pending would indicate at least an Eds commitment to WP best practices. Putting CP "ups the stakes" to an extent. It would indicarte the Ed was serious about adding concrete new cites which are to be added in a timebound fashion. I discuss some of this stuff upthread. Interesting responses generated. Thanks. Irondome (talk) 18:33, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia articles honoured in Cambridge University Press publication

Following the recent threads (Arbcom rules; Is this neutral phrasing) initiated here by User:Smatprt, protesting his topic ban from Shakespeare authorship articles, I thought it worth mentioning that these articles are discussed in the newly published book Shakespeare Beyond Doubt (Cambridge University Press). Professor Shapiro writes:

The effort to unseat Shakespeare will continue...the focus of those committed to doing so will probably shift to influencing the sites where students and general readers first turn for their information, especially the Wikipedia page on the Shakespeare Authorship Question. If you want to see this struggle from the perspective of the trenches, I recommend looking at that site and its discussion section, where various changes to the entry are raised (and to my considerable relief, invariably dismissed). Those who believe in Shakespeare's authorship owe a considerable debt to unsung heroes like Tom Reedy, who is not a professional scholar yet spends countless hours ensuring that the site remains fact rather than faith based, and draws on current scholarship to blunt the efforts of anti-Stratfordians to bend those facts. (p.240).

The book's bibliography also treats the Wikipedia article List of Shakespeare authorship candidates (created by Tom) as the currently most authoritative source on the number and identity of proposed alternative candidates. (p.247)

To have two Wikipedia articles endorsed in such a way in a CUP publication is surely something that suggests we have the right approach (though I wouldn't want to argue that changes should "invariably" be resisted). Needless to say, the List article was relentlessly opposed by user:Smatprt, and the push for the Shakespeare authorship question article to become featured would have been next-to impossible had he not been topic-banned at the time. Had Smatprt been given free reign we would be reading something very different about the reliability of Wikipedia in this field. I will also add that Tom, myself and User:Nishidani have created far more articles explaining and describing the views of the "anti-Stratfordians" than their activists ever did, so there no question of their theories being ignored or suppressed. Indeed, Tom is now attempting to improve the articles on Edward de Vere and Oxfordian theory. Paul B (talk) 13:07, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

Thank you for the update. I watch all this, but from a distance as I have no personal interest in the question really but realize that it's been a difficult area for a long time. All who are doing good work here are very well deserving of praise!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:53, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
Fascinating and very insightful that WP should be mentioned with such authenticity and apparent familiarity. When I grasped (I said I was a beginner in this field) that it was the author of the superb 1599 saying this, my admiration for the guardians of WP increased immeasurably. It just adds to the duty of WP to get our content correct and current. Living in what appears a WP bubble in terms of interaction, it is refreshing to hear that we are checked out by some of the contemporary giants of real world academia. Congratulations to all mentioned above.

Prof. Shapiro's 2 new works I havent read yet, but he alone appears to have realised that the anti-Stratfordians were occupying the vaccuum on this controversy that has been created by Stratfordian scholars, who ignore them without directly challenging their theories, unlike the tradition of H.N Gibson. He at least, takes the AS "threat" seriously, and confronts it head on. I suspect this is one of Prof Shiporos' motivations by keeping up to date with WP articles and especially talk pages which address the subject. Irondome (talk) 01:20, 25 April 2013 (UTC)


I have left notes for some members of Arbcomm, with no response and no success. even more odd, no one has done anything on any of those user talk pages since I posted my notes there. help me Obi-wan, you're my only hope. :-) --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 21:13, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

Only hope for what? Can you explain what you are asking for in a way that can be understood by people who haven't followed the Jerusalem RfC? The note you left on the ArbCom talk page is very difficult to understand. Looie496 (talk) 21:39, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
whew, a reply. ok, thanks. :-)
well, the page Talk:Jerusalem/2013 RfC discussion is meant to be a preliminary discussion for designing an RFC process. I feel like we were never able to reach consensus, due to structural problems with the process itself for discussing and designing an RFC.
in the future, I feel that any discussion for designing an RFC process should begin with the moderator providing some basic options for the future RFC, which the discussion participants can then discuss. When the process is structured so that participants each provide their own set of possible options for RFC, then, in my opinion, sometimes all it may lead to is a big mess. I feel the process needs to be reworked.
the next stage of this problem arose when I tried to discuss this suggestion with a few members of Arbcomm. at first, I was simply interested in discussing this informally with some members of Arbcomm. i left a few casual messages hoping for some feedback. when I received no replies at all, i became a bit more bemused by all this. i don't mind if some processes function slowly. i'm a bit puzzled as to why i could not get any discussion or even informal exchange going at all, or even any replies, even after sending notes to a few arbcomm people on an informal level. thanks. (appreciate any comments, feedback, ideas, etc etc etc). :-) --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 21:47, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

As the archetypal Wikiphilosopher ....

A serving arbcom member believes that admins should carry on editing articles when they are fully protected. Any objections raised on "Wikiphilosophical" grounds" should be ignored. As the original Wikiphilosopher, do you support that stance? In the Boston Marathon bombings article, for example, this would have resulted in about half a dozen admins continuing to write the article, while everyone else stood around and watched. (talk) 11:15, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

  • The keyword is 'uncontroversial' edits and an editor in that same thread claims that Wikipedia doesn't define the term well. If other editors object to an admin edit then I would call that controversial and then the process of consensus would be needed. If the editing admin doesn't follow consensus then other routes would be followed to correct the article and the admin. See: Controversy. It seems we do have a reasonable definition of it.--Canoe1967 (talk) 12:46, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Admins editing through protection to add content without consensus are misusing the tools. The tools were never designed to be used in that way. It has long been a fundamental, universally accepted tenant that they shall not be used in that way. (talk) 13:30, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
  • That seems to be a bit besides the point. Admins are appointed to do adminny things that normal users cannot...block users, delete articles, close discussions. Apart from that, they are supposed to be viewed as and treated like any non-admin when it comes to editing articles. If an article has to be fully protected due to editing disputes, then that should mean full; not kinda full, not sorta full, but full full. Otherwise we have a caste system here, which I believe the project has been quite studiously trying to move away from over the years as that is what it was like circa 2004-2008. The only edits through protection that should be done are those made via a templated request or those that are needed to fix clear policy violations, i.e. WP:BLP. Tarc (talk) 13:51, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Exactly. This is nothing to do with minor fixes. It's about continuing to write the article while it's protected. NuclearWarfare believes that it is okay to continue shaping the article. (talk) 13:57, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Lolwut?! Take his sysop bit and give it to that IP - he appears to be better qualified. Rd232 talk 14:18, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
My first question is why is the article fully protected rather than semi-protected?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 16:31, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
The article in question was Boston Marathon bombings, the full-protection was for a couple of hours last week, and the purpose of the full-protection was apparently to prevent editors from inserting reported but unconfirmed names of suspects into the article. There is ongoing discussion, to which I've just posted, on the protection policy talkpage. Newyorkbrad (talk) 16:34, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Ah, ok. Well, as it only happened for two hours, I think it's pretty uninteresting. I figured with all of the moaning that it was an ongoing issue.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:15, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Just to add to that, at least some of the names being inserted were not those of the currently identified suspects, as I understand it. Looie496 (talk) 17:10, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
It doesn't matter. Newyorkbrad'sNuclearWarfare's statement "The purpose of the full protection is not to shut anyone out of shaping the article's content" is false. That absolutely is the purpose of full protection. It's not only false, it's so false. There are no instances of full protection such that "doesn't apply to my edits" is operable, any more than there instances of NPOV or RS or whatever where "doesn't apply to my edits" is operable. OK, NewyorkbradNuclearWarfare made a (fairly minor) error in his understanding of this. OK, we all make such errors all the time, it' been pointed out, I'm sure that NewyorkbradNuclearWarfare has taken the point, and not a huge deal, but an "oops, my bad" statement from NewyorkbradNuclearWarfare would be helpful. Herostratus (talk) 17:51, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm pretty sure NYB didn't say the green words. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 18:03, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
No, but his fellow Arbcommer NuclearWarfare did. (talk) 18:25, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Oops, right, I meant NuclearWarfare. Herostratus (talk) 02:35, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
  • It wasn't about the specific case, it was about the general one, about the policy, and the "wikiphilosophy". NuclearWarfare believes that it's fine for admins to carry on editing a protected article, whether it is protected for 2 hours or 2 months. I was interested to know whether you share that view. (talk) 20:07, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
It was only two hours, but this was due to intervening events - somehow the capture, identification and arrest of one and/or the much-welcomed transition from BLP to BDP of the other convinced them to end the protection quickly, but it wasn't clear at the time that this would be such a brief episode. There have been enough ill-advised proposals for using Pending Changes Level 2 or other means to the same end elsewhere that it can't be regarded as purely a fluke. Wnt (talk) 22:17, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
For those who weren't following things, this BBC story might clarify why the article needed to be fully protected for a period of time. (I'm not trying to justify editing through protection by admins, just explaining why the protection was needed in the first place.) Looie496 (talk) 22:40, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
I think the media's complaints about Reddit are overwrought and almost purely self-serving. The real crime committed by Redditors is that they manufactured "news" without a license. So, some guy who was standing at "ground zero" got 72 calls one day. He could have had worse! And I'd bet money one of them ends up with some benefit - fame, job, new girlfriend, whatever, out of the mix. We have to balance that against the very real chance that the Redditors would have spotted something important and saved lives - just as the authorities did not hesitate to balance the risk of a shooting or an escape against designating several complete lifespans of man-days of the inhabitants of Boston spent under "lockdown". Wikipedia would not have touched any putative "suspects" with a ten-foot pole, and if we had, it would only have been to inform people of their innocence. Wnt (talk) 13:05, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
  • I don't think the content was the problem, it was the idea. Admin aren't "super editors", we are janitors. Clearly, admin shouldn't be editing a fully protected article except to administer it. The times I've had to "explain" that to admin have always been with admin who weren't active on the (very busy) talk page and just did hit and run edits, leaving the rest of us on the talk page to deal with a bunch of upset editors. It causes more drama than they realize, since they aren't around to deal with it. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 22:40, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Howdy all, As a non-admin I would like to reiterate what I said at the first forum that this discussion was brought up on. The problem is that people are seeing minor edits made by Admins as violating a rule, while they can not bring up any specific edits which violated the purpose of the encyclopedia. Many editors, including myself, asked for differences which violated the goals of wikipedia, and none were given (although I think there was one edit pointed out which needed correction). I think that admins job is to perform edits which improve the encyclopedia, and if a wikipedia page is fully protected to prevent mis-information from appearing on the page, and there is a rule which prevents admins from correcting references and formatting then the rule needs to change as it prevents admins from improving the encyclopedia when they could do so. Cheers Coffeepusher (talk) 00:48, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
No, that's wrong from a system dynamics standpoint. The particular small improvements to particular individual articles are not worth the cost in damage to the dynamics of the overall system, e.g. hurting the feelings of regular editors by making them feel second-class. (Whether these hurt feelings are justified or not is not really material here.) Exceptions can be made for screeching emergencies but nothing else. Herostratus (talk) 02:46, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
But it is absolutely correct from a pragmatic standpoint (James mostly, also Habermas if you want to get modern). Admins are different from regular editors, they have gone through a rigorous examination to be given the trust of the community, and as such have more responsibility INCLUDING insuring that when an article cannot be edited by regular editors because everyone has been inserting false information on the page, to fix references and formatting so that the encyclopedia still works. The ironic thing is that this conflict proves that they deserve our trust. While the page was fully protected, admins respected the communities trust and improved the encyclopedia, and none of them inserted any new information on the page until the article became semi-protected. Now I don't deny that people's egos were hurt, but I am coming from the viewpoint that we are all here to improve the encyclopedia, and if someone else fixes a reference or formatting error and makes the encyclopedia more readable then my opinion is the community should support it.Coffeepusher (talk) 03:04, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
As I've written elsewhere, this sort of problem would be much less likely to arise if we took WP:NOTNEWS seriously - or failing that, came up with proper policy for handling breaking news. The Boston bombings article was a god-awful mess at times, and had it not been for a large number of contributors (admins and non-admins - myself included) routinely ignoring policy and concentrating on keeping the beast under some sort of control, it would have been a darned sight worse. Our first (only?) duty is to our readers, and if that means that a few people get their knickers in a twist, tough luck. Sensitive souls that are going to get upset about an admin doing something they can't would be well advised to stay away from such articles, along with the bearers of assorted grudges against the World and/or Wikipedia. We have WP:IAR for a reason - because sometimes policy gets in the way of our objective: which isn't to keep each other happy, but to inform our readers. And in this case, to prevent our readers from being encouraged to beat the crap out of someone who looked vaguely like someone else in a blurry image obtained from who-knows-where, while keeping them informed about what was going on, at least to the extent that we had a clue ourselves. It wasn't pretty, and it certainly isn't the ideal way to create articles - but it is better than the alternative. That is the only standard we can judge ourselves by, and whether Jurgen Habermas would have approved or not is entirely beside the point. If your house is on fire, you don't call a philosopher... AndyTheGrump (talk) 04:09, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
Now now, if Habermas personally approves of something, particularly if he approves of something on wikipedia, then that fact becomes the point! Seriously I was only responding to the use of "systems dynamics" as a frame of understanding in the previous comment. Now I do have a serious question, this incident has been raised first on the Boston marathon bombing page, next at the ANI, then at the talk page for the protection policy, which was mentioned at the village pump, and now here, and in each case the same IP brought up the exact same concerns (and started all but the first topic). I'm no expert on forum shopping, but it looks like our IP is a unique WP:SPA in that they are very vary focused on the events of two hours on wikipedia.Coffeepusher (talk) 04:40, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
I now only ever edit as an ip, so getting this policy fixed is not going to benefit me at all. If the admins stopped semi-protecting articles for weeks on end at the drop of a hat, that would help me enormously. But that's not going to happen, and anyway it's a different discussion. (talk) 08:27, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
"NOTNEWS" is not a policy against covering current events! It combines two things: not to report breaking news as more important than other information, and not to cover routine announcements i.e. obituaries of otherwise unknown people in the local paper as notable events. Almost every time people invoke it they are wrong - and when it actually needs to be invoked, against people who like to "update" articles to always reflect the current status of something without paying as much attention to documenting the history - then people usually forget it exists. Wnt (talk) 13:09, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
  • @DennisBrown. "Clearly, admin shouldn't be editing a fully protected article except to administer it". If that's the way you feel, I can't for the life of me understand why you are arguing against having the policy say precisely that. You, Bwilkins and Beeblebrox have all said the same thing, but none of you want it in the policy. You say on the talk page that you "bite off the heads of admins who edit through protection for personal reasons", but the policy allows them to do that, as long as they believe the edit to be non-controversial and in-policy. If you don't want them to do it, then let's get the policy to prohibit them from doing it. (talk) 08:11, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
    • As far as we are concerned, it already IS policy, and we should enforce it as such. That doesn't mean I want policy to try to spell out every possible violation, which is overly bureaucratic. The community voted to make me an admin and said they trusted me to block problem editors and protect articles. They did not decide that I'm a "super editor" or that I should get special treatment in a discussion or when editing. In my opinion, using the tools to advantage myself to do work that is purely in my own editorial interest is an abuse of the tools. It doesn't require itemized listings of all the possible ways I could do that in order for it to be against policy. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 17:22, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
      It would be hard to express the answer any better than Dennis Brown just did. I would also add that it elevates the importance of deciding to full-protect an article to a level where it ought to be. My76Strat (talk) 18:17, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
  • I think that post does a very good job of highlighting the difference between the way you see this and the way I see it. You feel that you were elected to block whomever you personally see as a problem editor. Therefore, the vaguer the policy, the better. I feel that you were elected to enforce policy, therefore what the policy says is of paramount importance. I'm not saying it should spell out every last detail, but I am saying we should do our best to make it reflect accepted practice. Look where your position leaves you. You say you bite off the heads of admins who edit through protection, yet they are not transgressing policy. I'm suggesting that we reword the policy so that they would be transgressing. You say, no, as far as you are concerned they already are transgressing it. Can't you self-contradictory your position is? It is truly bizarre.
And with your post, it becomes crystal clear why you don't want the policy tightening. You believe that the policy should be whatever you say it is. If you decide somebody needs blocking, then you should be able to block them. You don't want any pesky policy getting in the way of your God-given right to block whomever you please. The policy is DennisBrown. Or if Bwilkins is dealing with the situation the policy is Bwilkins. Or if a.n.otheradmin is dealing with the situation... That mindset is entrenched in the admins of this site, and it responsible for the appalling state of the relationship between admins and non-admins. (talk) 19:14, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

It does look to me like there is a clear consensus that admins are not entitled to continue general editing through full protection. But the situation is that one admin disagrees, and it looks highly unlikely that they will either modify their position or face any sort of sanction or setting straight. And so, any other admin who chooses to behave in the same way will be free to do so. For practical purposes, regardless of consensus or who does and doesn't like it, general editing through full protection will be permitted in future, once the current discussion peters out.

The only options are surely to either accept that or else move to tighten the wording. Formerip (talk) 20:05, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

That sounds like a plan. Make the change, then watch Dennis revert it. Then listen to him explain that in his view "it already IS policy", therefore it doesn't actually need to be stated in the policy. (talk) 20:13, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
  • How you concluded that from what I said is beyond me, and stretches credulity. The reason we have admin is so that we don't have to debate every action, the admin is supposed to be experienced enough to determine when the outcome would be certain at ANI, and then do that action, or to know when it isn't certain, and take it to a board. Painting me with the "my way or the highway" brush shows you know very little about what I've written concerning admin actions in the past. Frankly, I've been quite vocal, so it shouldn't be that hard to find out what I actually believe if you only looked. For instance, I authored the WP:RAS proposal to make it much easier for the community to sanction admin or strip the admin bit from admin. It was the community that decided to not do this. Your generalizations of me miss the mark by a large margin. I still file cases at SPI and other boards when there is any doubt as to the consensus, rather than take action unilaterally. And yes, I have gone to admin's talk pages and told them to NOT edit through protection. Had they argued with me, I would have raised the issue at WP:AN. This is a matter of record, see the Sandy Hook article. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 20:19, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Dennis, you said you bite the heads off other admins. As the policy stands, you are in the wrong to do that. They are abiding by the policy, as it is written on the policy page. I'm suggesting we amend the policy so you would be in the right. You respond that inside your head, the policy is different, so we don't actually need to amend the policy as it is written on the policy page. How on earth you expect to be taken seriously is beyond me. As I said, this kind of doublethink is why the relationship between admins and non-admins is where it is. (talk) 20:39, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
  • And WP:FULL and WP:PREFER already make it clear that admin shouldn't edit through protection now. And feel free to not take me serious or blame me for whatever ills Wikipedia. You've already damaged your own credibility here by assuming too much. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 13:08, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
  • If it's already clear, show me the diff where NW got desysoped. Formerip (talk) 13:13, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Dennis, you and your colleagues have made no attempt to explain how NuclearWarfare's interpretation of this policy can be at such variance with your own:
1. Bwilkins: For those who understand full-protection such as this, you'll already know that admins should only now edit it to a) remove policy-violating text/images, or b) implement changes that have been arrived at via WP:CONSENSUS discussions on this talkpage.[22]
2. NuclearWarfare: The purpose of the full protection is not to shut anyone out of shaping the article's content. [23]
You've made it plain that you want the policy to be vague and self-contradictory. You continue to argue against having a policy that is easily and unambiguously understood by all. We should have a policy which makes such diametrically opposed interpretations as those above impossible. You want the policy vague, ambiguous, and self-contradictory so that you can choose which interpretation to use, according to your whim. That is your position not just for this policy, but for all policy. Where does that leave ordinary editors who turn to the policy pages expecting to find clear policy which is applicable to everyone who edits this encyclopaedia? (talk) 15:08, 25 April 2013 (UTC)

Possible pitfall in Wikipedia governance

is there some reason that Arbcomm cannot answer some correspondence, posted at Wikipedia_talk:Arbitration/Requests#Mandated Jerusalem discussion appears to be a bureaucratic morass? even when I posted on 3 or 4 personal talk pages for members of Arbcomm? Is this spring break for them or something? :-)

just wanted to mention this, and to solicit any feedback. I do feel that something about this process might need to be addressed. I appreciate any help, comments, ideas, input, etc etc. :-) thanks. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 02:26, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia's governance does not have pitfalls—it is filled, instead, with long drops to the mantle and outer core. ArbCom exists only to protect the strong against the weak. Although I am not in favor of its abolishment, I think that Wikipedia needs stronger institutions, including an elected assembly and content review boards, to deal with the cabals which have hijacked our political processes. Of course, most decisions should be local, but legislative and content decisions of consequence should be dealt with by elected officials chosen by the entire encyclopedia, not by ArbCom making every attempt under its establishing policies to legislate from the bench. All this leads to are remedies which are incongruous with the underlying problems that are supposed to be solved, with no other way of solving them.

Wikipedian content builders need to rise and take back the political process. Election of legislators, while it seems contrary to the fundamental precepts of this project, is the only way of giving content builders an (albeit indirect) form of control over the encyclopedia and of reining in the small special-interest groups and POV-pushers which masquerade for the "community". Wer900talk 04:09, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

The reason ArbCom takes so long to respond is that an official answer takes a week or two to wind its way through the process. The most common reasons that ArbCom didn't respond to people in my tenure were, in no particular order:
1) The correspondent failed to ask a question, or 1a) the correspondent failed to ask a question before everyone's attention span had expired. ArbCom gets probably a couple of emails a week that fall into this category, assuming the distribution hadn't changed. You've all probably seen things like this, where someone essentially gets in a dialogue with themselves, tacks a question on the end of their assumptions and reasoning, and emails the lot to the committee.
2) The correspondent is disliked, or 2a) the correspondent is feared. These are different--some people are just plain unpleasant to talk to, because they will just miss the point like they have done before, but others have a track record of trying to harass identified people. 2a doesn't actually happen all that often, but 2 happens all the time, especially in ban appeals.
3) The committee is not agreed on the answer. This happens when reasonable people post specific questions, and then the arbs have to find consensus on an answer, of some sort, in addition to all the case work, clarification, amendments, CHILDPROTECT matters, misbehaving admins, and OTHER private correspondence.
The committee has no SLA for private correspondence, such that much of it gets handled on a what-is-the-biggest-threat-to-Wikipedia-right-now basis, by the selected volunteers. You may be ignored not because your question is TL;DR, not because you're disliked, but simply because you've posed a question that needs Arbitrator consensus... and the committee as a whole is working on more important things. Jclemens (talk) 04:26, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
hmmm, okay. well, thanks for your replies and helpful input on that. 👍 Like --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 05:24, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Was this even an e-mail, or are you simply looking for discussion on this post of yours? It seems like an odd place to start that discussion, in part because it's probably a little-watched corner these days, and it's not a likely place to discuss policy/process changes. If you're waiting for discussion on your idea there, you could be waiting for a long, long time for anyone to stumble across it (✉→BWilkins←✎) 11:05, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

hi. well, I agree with you. Actually the place where I tried to start the discussion is at : Wikipedia_talk:Arbitration/Requests#Mandated Jerusalem discussion appears to be a bureaucratic morass. I should have been clearer about this before. That was in my previous link, but I shouldn't have assumed that everyone could click that.
if you want, could some of you, please read the note which was left there, and let me klnow what you think?? thanks. still not seeing any replies yet. thanks. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 11:09, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, as soon as I saw the phrase "all possible wordings" I realized that it was unworkable, and I can understand why nobody else replied. Besides, mixing ArbComm and RFC's seems a bit odd ... Not much else to say (✉→BWilkins←✎) 11:33, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
well, I appreciate your reply. however, not sure that I follow your point here. how does the phrase "all possible wordings" relate to this item? that is not a part of my idea. I think that the idea is fairly workable. this is a response to the process for an RFC which Arbcomm itself set up. feel free to read the next section there, which further explains it. You can read it at:
thanks. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 11:45, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

To Jimbo, the WikiFather

What are your thoughts of Wikipedia ten years down the road? Wikipedia is like a lovely digital temple constructed painstakingly by thousands of hardworking individuals... Imagine if one day the server was destroyed permanently or if Wikipedia is forced to shut down... Oh the horrors. Cheers, ☯ Bonkers The Clown \(^_^)/ Nonsensical Babble ☯ 15:43, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Servers are two a penny (almost). All that matters is the data.
Which you can download any time you like. And many people do. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 18:27, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Kazakh press conference

Jimmy, could you please communicate clearly when you became aware of Ting Chen's participation in the Kazakh press conference on June 16, 2011? Then, could you also specify when you become aware that the Samruk-Kazyna Foundation also participated in that press conference? Several people have been curious about the timing of the press conference and the subsequent award of the Wikipedian of the Year prize to a former Kazakh government official in August 2011. Lastly, could you confirm that the Wikipedian of the Year honor included a $5,000 contribution to Rauan Kenzhekhanuly, paid from your own personal resources? And, was that money actually received by Kenzhekhanuly? Thank you for considering and answering these questions. - 2001:558:1400:10:8008:3684:A1BD:682F (talk) 14:20, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Since when did the User talk:Jimbo Wales page become question time? Drop this ridiculousness. (talk) 18:38, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Maybe since Wales moved to England and has always described his role on Wikipedia as a parliamentarian monarch? It's not ridiculous. They are simple questions, and their answers would help to resolve some of the cognitive dissonance surrounding Wales' support of the Kazakh Wikipedia project. - 2001:558:1400:10:8008:3684:A1BD:682F (talk) 20:54, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

You are asking the wrong questions. The right question is this: "Knowing what you know now, would you still make the award of Wikipedian of the Year to Rauan?" And the answer is "Yes". Perhaps if you could give me some indication of what the hell it is you are driving at, I'd be more inclined to research your specific questions, but I do not understand the point. I don't remember when I became aware of Ting's participation - I'd have to dig that up. I can tell you that the press conference and Ting's visit had no bearing at all on my decision to award Rauan, who richly deserved it. So the timing of the press conference and my awareness of it, is entirely irrelevant. And no, the actual money has not been transferred yet, as the concept has always been that I'd do it ceremonially when I go to Kazakhstan, which I've not managed yet.

There is no need for cognitive dissonance here. I strongly support efforts to bring freedom of speech and a neutral high quality encyclopedia to Kazakhstan. I think that the Kazakh government has a very poor track record in this area. I think it unfortunate that Wikibilim (which is an independent organization not even remotely under my control) accepted funding from the Samruk-Kazyna Foundation, and yet I am glad that the funding came with absolutely no strings attached, and that Wikibilim has good policies in place to avoid editing Wikipedia in an official capacity. I'm glad they have taken the old official encyclopedia (which is most assuredly biased and flawed in deep ways) and gotten it under a free license in an open project so that it can be updated. What they do, 2 of their 25 employees, is hold seminars and training sessions to encourage more people to edit Wikipedia. The rest of their work has nothing to do with Wikipedia but has to do with bringing more information online in the Kazakh language.

I do not wish to be seen as naive or as claiming that everything is perfect in the Kazakh language Wikipedia. They have their problems and controversies as all languages do. When I do visit Kazakhstan, I'll meet with representatives of the government (as I have done in many countries including Russia, China, France, the US, the UK, etc.) and press them on issues of freedom of speech. I'll meet with the Wikipedians to hear their personal stories about editing Wikipedia.

I encourage people to talk to Rauan about whatever concerns you, as well. He speaks perfectly good English.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:22, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

He is also seems to be head of the, deaf in one ear and hard of hearing in the other, department. IOW neither his email nor phone appear to be working. John lilburne (talk) 09:49, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Perhaps Cluebot is checking his voicemail and email for him? (Sorry, couldn't resist). --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 22:57, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Jimmy, this is the second time you have been asked these rather simple questions, and it's the second time that you have evaded the questions and tried to reframe or recharacterize the discussion. For example, you are saying now, "I am glad that the funding came with absolutely no strings attached". How do you know this? Did the recipient of the funding tell you this, and his word (as a former government communications official) is good enough for you? It is rather pointless to go into why we would like you to answer the questions presented to you, if you're likely to just dodge the questions once again (because you don't agree with the rationale behind the questions). Will you promise that if we clarify why we want you to answer the questions, that you will answer them? No sense wasting time clarifying if you're not going to be willing to respond anyway. - 2001:558:1400:10:D26:F6:DCDE:54BB (talk) 16:34, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
I have a question for the above IP address- Why do you care and why do you feel Jimbo has any obligation to tell you when he found out ANYTHING? He, or you, or anyone, can describe his function as a "parlimentarian monarchy" all they want, but in the end he is not, nor is he beholden in any legal manner to you. This is not a US government entity functioning under sunshine laws requiring openness with anyone who requests information simply because they are curious. So basically- I'd like to know WHY you want to know these answers from Jimbo. (talk) 19:34, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Why don't you ask Scott at the Super 8? - 2001:558:1400:10:51F8:88D7:CDE0:40A4 (talk) 13:32, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
Mr. Wales, like it or not, is a world-famous "public figure". And there is the appearance of a serious conflict of his financial interest in this case. His continued silence on the issue is disturbing, to say the least. The ordinary people who contribute millions of dollars to the WMF deserve at least a little transparency. (talk) 22:43, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
As a public figure, he has 2 choices in these sorts of situations: he can either disregard the problems and stick to his original story, or he can spend a lot of energy giving an honest explanation and an earnest statement of how his strategies will evolve. Both strategies are completely acceptable and/or effective for public figures. --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 23:04, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
When I see IP editors constantly badgering Jimbo over this probable non-issue, I have to wonder what they're trying to conceal. Prioryman (talk) 23:03, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
If this is a "probable non-issue", then it should be painlessly easy for Wales to quickly answer the two plain-and-simple questions: when he became aware of Ting Chen's participation in the Kazakh press conference on June 16, 2011; and when he became aware that the Samruk-Kazyna Foundation also participated in that press conference? Given that the Kazakh government stands accused by international media of kidnapping, silencing opposition media, and massacre of labor disputants, that is reason enough for IP editors to conceal their identity, for their own safety. - 2001:558:1400:10:A5CF:B4B0:1437:348 (talk) 13:45, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
Unless you're using a genuine virtual private network or anonymizer I would highly doubt that posting your IP number to a page like this assures any kind of safety at all. Registering an alternate account for privacy/safety reasons is permissible, and while I would by no means trust it alone to protect you, it would be better than this. I don't see why people find Jimbo's answers here in any way unsatisfactory. I would expect the Kazakh government to have two separate goals - one being to censor and control content, which we absolutely detest, but the other being to promote the understanding of Kazakh language and culture, which we fully embrace. They must decide which goal is more important to them. Writing a Wikipedia in a language has the same importance now in establishing its prominence as printing a Bible in it did in the 1400s. Wnt (talk) 14:28, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
"I don't see why people find Jimbo's answers here in any way unsatisfactory." Really? The fact is, Jimbo hasn't answered either of the two questions that have been presented to him, multiple times. He's dodged those two questions, every time. You find that satisfactory? - 2001:558:1400:10:A5CF:B4B0:1437:348 (talk) 17:04, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
Your IP address indicates that you're a Comcast cable user in the United States. I have to say I'm sceptical of the idea that the Kazakh government could or would "kidnap", "silence" or "massacre" a critic in the US. Occam's Razor suggests that you're trying to hide your identity from Wikipedia, not from Kazakhstan. Prioryman (talk) 20:45, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
You're asking when he became aware of the participation of each of two entities in a conference. Are you kidding me? Who is going to remember exactly when they knew such a thing? Who could be expected to make something of it at the time? Whether you're honest or not, that you know. Wnt (talk) 04:44, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
A rather silly question from Wnt, when you consider the following. The press conference took place on June 16, 2011. It was held by Wikibilim, and present in person was the chair of the Wikimedia Foundation (the organization Jimmy Wales founded, I'll remind you). Not even two months later, Jimmy Wales announced that the head of Wikibilim (organizer of the press conference in June) was the global "Wikipedian of the Year", and $5,000 of Wales' own money was promised to Wikibilim. One of two things is obvious. Either Jimmy Wales can be "expected to make something of it at the time", given that less than two months elapsed between the press conference and his opening his wallet and $5,000 flying out to the organization that sponsored the press conference; or, Jimmy Wales should not be "expected to make something of it at the time", and we are all to believe that it is a pure coincidence that the chairman of his foundation participated in a press conference held by the organization that Jimmy Wales would donate $5,000 to, only seven weeks later. Another observation is obvious, and that is Wnt's commentary above reflects either a child's level of gullibility, or an adult's attempt to whitewash a question that is apparently touching a few nerves. - 2001:558:1400:10:51F8:88D7:CDE0:40A4 (talk) 13:32, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
Might it be helpful to point out that Jimbo has answered one of the two questions you consider to be important, by saying that he doesn't remember and he doesn't think it's important anyway? You don't have to like that as an answer, but it is an answer. Formerip (talk) 14:09, 25 April 2013 (UTC)
I'll go for the child's level of gullibility, thank you. I mean, from a simple-minded child's perspective, I see that "opening up" a closed society is a good thing. Getting a large, professionally produced encyclopedia out under a free license where it can be mercilessly revised and expanded is a good thing. This Rube Goldberg scheme whereby Kazakh government funding taints Wikibilim taints its member taints the conference taints the WMF person at the conference ... well, maybe it's a bad thing. Sure, I wouldn't be surprised if there are some creepy things going on, I don't know, and probably nobody here knows about - say, maybe those free laptops are loaded with secret government keyloggers and other spyware. But then again, I don't really have much more confidence about that in the U.S. and I had to pay for this laptop my own damn self. Wnt (talk) 14:51, 25 April 2013 (UTC)

I have thoroughly answered these questions. I do not remember exactly when I heard about the press conference. I do not remember when I first heard that Samruk-Kazyna Foundation was involved. I do not remember when I learned that Samruk-Kazyna is a sovereign wealth fund. Fortunately, I do remember and have said quite clearly, that the question is not relevant or important to anything. There was no connection between the press conference and my award to Rauan.

Additionally I'd like to call direct attention to this nonsense: "And there is the appearance of a serious conflict of his financial interest in this case" said another anonymous liar. There is no appearance of me having any financial conflict of interest of any kind. There is no financial conflict of interest. There is no evidence of a conflict of interest. There is nothing anywhere to even suggest in the least that there is any financial conflict of interest. I receive no money, directly or indirectly, from anyone having anything to do with Kazakhstan in any capacity. Anonymously posting a sneering allegation as if it is true is disgusting.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 08:49, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Okay, so if we take what you say ('There was no connection between the press conference and my award to Rauan') at face value, then this means that at the time you made the award in early August 2011, you had not yet been made aware of the press conference in June 2011. Because if you were aware of the press conference at the time of the award, then there would have been at least some tiny amount of cognitive "connection" between the press conference and the award, because at both events Wikibilim and Rauan were the focus. So, if that is a correct assumption (that you were not even aware of the press conference that featured the chairman of your Foundation, the future recipient of the 'Wikipedian of the Year' award, and several representatives of the Kazakh government and its sovereign fund), then we can conclude that the level of research you committed to selecting Rauan for the prize was probably quite limited and cursory. And we can also conclude that either Ting Chen did not even mention this press conference at either of the two Wikimedia Foundation board meetings that took place before you gave the award, or that you weren't paying enough attention to him when he did. However you want to slice it, it sounds like the level of research and communication taking place prior to and after the award was minimal and potentially careless. It wasn't until the so-called "critics and trolls" brought the problem of association with the Kazakh government to your direct attention that you seem to have been moved to speak about the problem publicly. One would think you would thank the trolls for bringing the problem to your attention, but instead, your response has mostly been to defend and counter-punch at every opportunity. I don't think I speak alone when I say that many people are very disappointed in how you handled the 2011 Wikipedian of the Year award, and there's not any confidence at all that you handled the subsequent 2012 award any better. That is what is "disgusting". - 2001:558:1400:10:A1D7:5830:8770:FB2C (talk) 13:41, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
All of your assumptions are false.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:47, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

And hiding behind an IP address while smearing by innuendo is good and wholesome? - SchroCat (talk) 13:45, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

This again? The need to obscure identity is because we are talking about an oppressive autocratic regime. See above. - 2001:558:1400:10:A1D7:5830:8770:FB2C (talk) 15:09, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
And, as above, someone pointed out that "you're a Comcast cable user in the United States". I doubt that a Kazakh snatch squad is on it's way to you now. - SchroCat (talk) 15:19, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
That shows how little you know. This goes very deep. There have been a lot of lies told. And the level of whitewashing and revising history is extensive. We have video evidence, too. Just wait. - 2001:558:1400:10:A1D7:5830:8770:FB2C (talk) 16:15, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
If there are Kazakh snatch squads roaming the U.S. silencing people, why don't you be innovative and tell the FBI about it? Better yet, tell us and Reddit about it and we can get to work doxing the creeps. ;) Wnt (talk) 18:23, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
  • "We have video evidence, too. Just wait." It's pretty clear that the IP is just another in the long line of conspiracy theorists who use the Internet to throw content-free mud at prominent individuals (they have a pile of excellent evidence, but somehow never have the time to present it). We normally leave Jimbo to decide what commentary is appropriate here, but I would recommend that any further content-free accusations be removed by independent editors. Johnuniq (talk) 00:03, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

Category check

Category:Norwegian erotic dancers needs a peer review. --Normash (talk) 22:34, 25 April 2013 (UTC)

There is a historical need for peer reviews for articles created by accounts profiled as sockpuppets at Norwegian wikipedia. --Normash (talk) 22:47, 25 April 2013 (UTC)

WOuld someone mind giving User:Normash the attention they are seeking? Also, would you mind deleting Audun Carlsen? I don't think we want to have redirects in the names of crime victims. Thanks. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:08, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Granted he is not a school girl who has been seriously injured by Taliban sympathizers in Afghanistan/Pakistan. But TV-interviews like this one [24] shows that he apparently does not need your protection from media spotlight. Clearly he is Norway's most famous male escort abroad[25] as far as international media is concerned. And please have a look into the article about Bente Lyon that was speedily deleted today; it was based on this text [26]. A campaign against articles about Norwegian sex workers seems to have started today. A second deletion discussion regarding Tanya Hansen started today—seven years after the last one. --Normash (talk) 04:15, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Normash, as you have stated, you were recently blocked on the Norwegian-language WP as a sockpuppet. What were the other accounts involved, if you don't mind me asking? Delicious carbuncle (talk) 11:23, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
@Delicious carbuncle: Yesterday my Norwegian account was blocked without any mention of associated acts or specified sockpuppets. (25. apr 2013 kl. 23:05 Haros (diskusjon | bidrag) blokkerte Normash (diskusjon | bidrag) med en varighet på ubestemt (kontooppretting deaktivert) (Sokkedukke)). Then a half hour before you asked your question, my status was upgraded to [27]—a named suspected sock puppet.(26. apr 2013 kl. 10:39‎ 4ing (diskusjon | bidrag)‎ . . (22 bytes) (+22)‎ . . (sokkedukke)) I suggest that you deal with that matter on your user page on the Norwegian site, where your use of English will be accepted. --Normash (talk) 12:56, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
I'll deal with it here, thanks. Hint to admins:Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Sju hav. Just saying. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 17:01, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

A Norwegian convicted brothel organizer

Peer review needed for text about a sex worker that was speedily deleted today:

"Bente Lyon is a Norwegian convicted of narcotics trafficking, and she has been convicted of organizing a brothel in Norway from 2000 to 2002.[28]

An article in Dagbladet in 2006 called her "Norway's uncontested brothel keeper" (Norges ubestridte bordellmamma).[29]. She has worked as a prostitute.

In 2007 an appellate court verdict (of five years in prison) was upheld and she was convicted for aiding and abetting in the smuggling of narcotics from Amsterdam to USA: 1.6 kilograms of cocain and 11000 ecstacy tablets. Her part consisted of providing contactpersons in Amsterdam, and providing airplane tickets for the two persons who carried out the smuggling." --Normash (talk) 12:36, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

The article about Bente Lyon has now been re-published. --Normash (talk) 12:41, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

It would mean the World to me

If you could just say hi to me please? You've created the most amazing thing on the internet, It would mean a whole lot to me if you did. I'm sorry if this might be spam (which I hope isn't) and I'm not being too much of a fanboy here. You can just remove this if you like, and I am shocked by the fact that you have 131 archives.

☞ Яǐɱ (Chat with Meh) (Updates) 04:38, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Hi!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 07:35, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Jimbo is a leader in the fight against censorship in various nations and subcultures. He speaks regularly to mankind including you. I will try to update you on your user page the next time I discover a future such message to mankind including you. And then I will try to remember to ask you on your user page, in Janet Jackson's spirit: "What have you done for wikipedia lately?" --Normash (talk) 05:13, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Yeah, but she looked much better in lycra, too. Martinevans123 (talk) 16:04, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
O I will treasure this forever! You're the best! ☞ Яǐɱ (Chat with Meh) (Updates)

22:46, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

To Jimbo, the WikiFather

What are your thoughts of Wikipedia ten years down the road? Wikipedia is like a lovely digital temple constructed painstakingly by thousands of hardworking individuals... Imagine if one day the server was destroyed permanently or if Wikipedia is forced to shut down... Oh the horrors. Cheers, ☯ Bonkers The Clown \(^_^)/ Nonsensical Babble ☯ 15:43, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Servers are two a penny (almost). All that matters is the data.
Which you can download any time you like. And many people do. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 18:27, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Norwegian brothel keeper, narcotics smuggling facilitator, prostitute and author is up for deletion

The Bente Lyon article has been nominated for deletion. She is a celebrity with at least two decades of fame. --Normash (talk) 20:44, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

John Le Mesurier talk page

Mr. Wales, if you have a moment, would you be so kind as to take a glance at Talk:John Le Mesurier. There is a nasty quite unnecessary brutal exchange going on there, which involves the existence of me, the validation of Just William and now borders on elder abuse! I have asked for neutral arbitration, but it would be nice to think you know what's going on down there. Thank you. JohnClarknew (talk) 19:53, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

If someone is abusing you, you should call the police. If someone is being unpleasant to you on Wikipedia, that's not elder abuse (or unusual). Delicious carbuncle (talk) 20:28, 22 April 2013 (UTC)as
My best advice would be to first stop accusing people of elder abuse, as DC says above. Please assume good faith from other contributors. Wikipedia works by consensus, which should be arrived at by considering the due weight to place on things per their coverage in reliable sources. Sometimes consensus is against your opinion (as appears to be the case here), and you just have to accept that and move on. It's nothing personal--there is only so much information that we can fit in an article about a widely covered topic. Mark Arsten (talk) 20:33, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Also, please review our WP:COI guideline; people are generally discouraged from adding information about themselves to Wikipedia. Mark Arsten (talk) 20:34, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I just did a quick read of the talk page. It seems that John Clark may warrant inclusion in the article. They have asked for a source. User:JohnClarknew has provided one and they keep deleting the url from the talk page claiming it is promotional of the magazine that he is trying to use as a source. Do we delete links to other magazines from talk pages because they try to sell you copies on their websites?--Canoe1967 (talk) 21:04, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Thank you, Canoe 1967. You are the voice of reason and common sense. This article has a long list of the subject's co-stars and co-featured players, so I think it is of interest to the reader to see the inclusion of John Clark as part of that list. Objection was unwarranted from the start. So they say it lacked a source? I have provided one, which includes a photograph of me, Le Mesurier as the character Uncle Noel, and his signature; what could be better? So then they changed their tune, and started insulting me with accusations which you can read. Finally, when one of them used my age (80) as somehow relevant in disparaging terms, holding me in disrepute, that, Delicious Carbuncle, is a form of elder abuse. Not criminal, but actionable. JohnClarknew (talk) 21:34, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
A photo is not a reliable source IMO, what with photoshop and other clever picture editing software etc doing the rounds. You provided a poor source, for trivial information. I'm sorry, but I do not consider "John Clark" to be a notable actor, compared to the others listed. We are talking of Peter Sellers, Eric Sykes, Terry-Thomas etc. These actors were hugely popular and everybody knew of them and their work. John Clark was less well known, who most would struggle to remember or recognise. Why should we bloat this featured article with the names of actors who played a very minor part in a very minor play alongside JLM. Where do we draw the line? -- CassiantoTalk 21:55, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
That is something of a misreading of the situation. The information was originally removed from the article after the COI inclusion because there was no source (which was also a BLP problem). It's not the only reason for not including it: it's a piece of trivia of such minute proportions that if shouldn't be included, source or no source. JLM was in over a hundred films, for example, and we don't even list all of them, so why would we include an obscure unknown from a minor radio play in the 194os? - SchroCat (talk) 21:16, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
(a second brief correction: the information that was deleted was a plug for subscriptions to an obscure society, and failed on wp:notadvertising grounds.) - SchroCat (talk) 21:19, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Ah, an appeal to Jimbo because consensus is against him... Agreeing with SchroCat that Canoe1967 has misread the situation, particularly in saying that an article about John Le Mesurier ought to include a mention of the name of the actor who played the title character in JLM's first radio show, when that actor is not mentioned in secondary sources about JLM and is not himself a household name (with respect). BencherliteTalk 22:00, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I stand by the deletion of this text from the talk page. Promoting and attempting to sell the magazine which he has admitted being a member of, is a clear breach of WP:SOAP #4 and #5. I did not delete this because of his desire to use it as a source. It was his blatant attempt at trying to flog me a copy of the magazine, and desperate attempt at trying to recruit me (and others) for future membership in exchange for a small fee I objected to. -- CassiantoTalk 21:32, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I think you should just be a little philosophical here John. Remember JLM never even recieved a credit in Ben Hur for his beautifully crafted little characterisation of the Greek doctor at the end of the chariot scene. The JLM I recall (vaguely and from a respectful distance) during my time in Ramsgate in the 70s and 80s would have just given one of those slight, almost sad smiles he did. Dont worry about it. You may have a case for insertion, but someone else should do it and the usual WP rules should apply. I think the process of consensus building and discussion has broken here. I hope it is repaired. Its not always a good idea to bring such things to large forums such as this. Some wise advice I got from a fellow Ed. Keep things small and quiet on WP. Irondome (talk) 21:42, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I'd disagree on the inclusion: adding the name of a minor unknown really is rather pointless: so much has been removed from the article to make it readable (including the names of most of his films, stage shows and tv and radio broadcasts, that adding this information really adds nothing to the background or understanding of Le Mez, but seems to be little more than an ego trip. - SchroCat (talk) 22:04, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── is the link in question. If the magazine is a foremost authority on Just William then it could be used as a source. Mentioning an editors age on an article talk page probably warrants a revdel as outing. If the magazine is accepted as an RS then inclusion of John Clark in the article could be discussed if the connection between the article subject and John Clark is notable. I haven't looked into detail on the connection.--Canoe1967 (talk) 22:13, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

The Society is indeed the foremost authority on the creation of Richmal Crompton's loveable rascal. They meet once a year, and online. The magazine can be obtained for £10, and there's no need to participate in any activity. Back copies for £3.50, members only, and they exist barely as a non-profit, just like WP. They could do with donations too! I and Martin Jarvis who is famous for reading the stories on BBC radio and audiobooks, are honorary members, and we feel honored to have been asked. JohnClarknew (talk) 02:51, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
There's no outing here, the editor has their own article (which they created), as well as their user page. It's the connection that is part of the issue: it's minor and fleeting at best in the career of JLM. In terms of inclusion of any more info into the article, there are several thousand other actors, films, TV and radio broadcasts which would come further up the chain that this. - SchroCat (talk) 22:32, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
I would disagree with this planned copy edit. The article has passed through a peer review, good article review, and featured review and its content was not in question. Copy editing this now could void the opinions of the excellent reviewers who took part. -- CassiantoTalk 22:33, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
It is irrelevant now. Quite apart from the facts above, I subsequently noted JLM has a seperate professional bio page, so I just deleted my original drone. Irondome (talk) 22:37, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

John. Why dont you and some other editors improve the rather shaky (at the moment) Just William article. It could do with clean up reorganisation and a portrayal of William on screen and radio section, and you could it would seem quite legitimately go in there. Based on an old R/T Radio Times listing that could be sourced to everyones satisfaction. I do not know how much the JLM connection means to you, but if you disconnect from that, it looks like you can legitimately be in and help improve a potentially good article, which actually direct involves an obviously very important role in your professional career. In that sense I think notability and other stuff would be satisfied? In the opinion of other Eds and if John was in agreement could this provide consensus for a new direction for this issue? Irondome (talk) 23:25, 22 April 2013 (UTC) Were you the first to portray William on the BBC? Irondome (talk) 23:25, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

We are talking of Peter Sellers, Eric Sykes, Terry-Thomas etc. Right. We are also talking of Andrew Osborn (who?), Esme Percy, Ernest Jay, Zena Marshall and John Barry (no link) in the article, just below the Just William reference, among dozens of others. WP:NPOV editing? And how about WP:OWN? And Irondome, have a look at this sad state of affairs at the BBC archives department Radio Times archives. Won't find much there, I'm afraid. And yes, I was the first on radio and TV and stage, and there have been several others to come along later, continuing up to the present day. There was a Just William movie in 1940, which starred Dicky Lupino as William and Roddy McDowell as Ginger. JohnClarknew (talk) 00:34, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
"We are also talking of Andrew Osborn (who?), Esme Percy, Ernest Jay, Zena Marshall and John Barry (no link) in the article": you are quite right, they were superfluous and I've removed them accordingly. - SchroCat (talk) 08:12, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
John. Do you remember taking part in any related early media promotions? Because I appear to have found you. It was a British Pathe newsreel. Its on their archive. But it appears to be dated 1946. The synopsis given to the piece is A look at young "Just William" actor John Clark as he relaxes at home. M/S of John appearing in radio show. M/S of John in his garden, he throws a catapault at.. Where it breaks off. It can be found at Irondome (talk) 01:46, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
You will find that external link on the John Clark (actor) article, which is packed with information, including how I got my start with Will Hay. The trouble is, these boys require it to somehow be tied in by direct association with John Le Mesurier. His biographer didn't mention me, didn't have to, and it's from that book, long out of print, from which many of their sourced references come, through page numbers and bibliography. I don't question their expertise with the software, but I do question their use of common sense and their rejection of WP:GF. I am not raising WP:MEAT.
Just William, the magazine, is the only place it is to be found, with JLM standing behind me in a full cast picture, signed by the entire cast including him. There's also a Radio Times scan of a plug which lists him appearing with me in the play, as it was broadcast live from the stage as the BBC Christmas special in 1946. That should resolve the issue. I would rather someone else enter it, in this instance. JohnClarknew (talk) 02:51, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
"these boys require it to somehow be tied in by direct association". John, I don't wish to start accusing anyone of falsehood, but this just patently isn't true. The Pathe link has never been mentioned in any of the discussions on the four talk pages, or in the article itself, so to say that other editors require a direct link just isn't true. As an additional point, his main biography (by McCann) is not out of print, it is still very much available. His autobiography is, (as is his wife's autobiography) but we've tried to use that sparingly. None of those three books mention you. As to the question of good faith, you have questioned our good faith on a number of occasions, and it is something I will refute entirely and without reservation. I have no idea why you are questioning my common sense, it seems to just be another in a long line of cheap gibes we have had to put up with since the various discussions started. - SchroCat (talk) 14:32, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
John, drop the JLM link. It would appear you have enough notability to be included in a much improved Just William article, whicjh is an excellent subject in the English schoolboy fiction genre. The JLM article is mature, the JW article deserves to be improved. You should be part of a actors portraying William section in an expanded and improved article. I cant keep repeating this. Irondome (talk) 03:08, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
I have not been able to view it because it is taking forever to download. Its prob my old PC. But there appear to be several links relating to the same newsreel. I assume this would be a reliable source to all concerned. But I do advise that this be used in the Just William article as I mentioned above. I suggest dropping the linkage with JLM. Irondome (talk) 01:51, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
I will not drop this one, the principle is too important! There's a double standard at work here in WP. I looked at the article on the life of Richmal Crompton. I see a few references at the bottom of the page, but not one single inline citation to support a fact. I know it to be a well-written truthful article. But some users would destroy it by deleting anything not sourced, as they just did with my ex-wife, actress Kay Hawtrey. Which would be a crying shame.
I have many friends here in Hollywood where I live who are household names, and I can tell you, most of them will have nothing to do with WP because they perceive WP:NPOV editing by fanboys, or haters, depending on who they are, and absolutely none have contributed as I have, because they are intimidated by the software, or they have no interest in real life outside of their performing careers. Mr. Wales needs to know this, which is why I started the discussion here, and I think he does. That is why I believe that ALL BLPers should be not just allowed, but encouraged to edit articles on themselves, always working within the rules of course. I remind them that their obituaries, eventually, will be quoted for free (no copyright) off these pages, wind up at the top of search engines, and they'll be stuck with them. I promote WP wherever I can among my peers, because I think it is a wonderful force for good, but it is always being unfairly slammed in the media. I try to preach for donations. JohnClarknew (talk) 04:35, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
There is no principle involved here at all John, and if you are trying to turn this into some sort of cause celebre then you are barking up the wrong tree, I'm afraid. The unsourced addition of your name to the article of another individual on a matter of such infinitesimally minor significance in the life of JLM is one thing. It has nothing to do with whether we as a project start encouraging the circumventing any form of verifiability on the basis that COI editing is beneficial. It will lead to nothing more than skewed self-written hagiographies penned by PR machines on the one hand and open the door to libel actions on the other. - SchroCat (talk) 08:12, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

Yes, Mr Clark could maybe have a brief mention in a section about any early variations of the JW play in the JW aricle. And when I say brief, I mean very brief. (I still don't completeley agree with it as Mr Clark is unheard of here in England and his appearance was a non-notable performance compared with, say, Kenneth Williams)). Also, I would strongly discourage him from adding this information himself, and not to advertise his society and magazine in exchange for money. As far as a source goes, the magazine might not be considered reliable unless we can establish the credentials of the contributors and the editor. These credentials will need to be proved. I would justify its use on the JW talk page by leaving a brief note with some evidential links as to the reliability of its founders, editors, contributors etc). There is still no evidence to suggest the magazine is anything other than WP:SPAM or a fansite at this stage. -- CassiantoTalk 04:45, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

I asked the magazine editor if the main authority, the Just William Society, would be so kind as to check in London to see if they could find a source that I (you) required. Their history researcher went to a lot of trouble, and I just got this message of his to the editor:
Went to Westminster Reference Library this afternoon - unfortunately, there was a new-ish librarian who couldn’t lay her hands on the theatre magazine I think I found the 1946 cast list in. In fact, she couldn’t even come up with the title of the magazine, and neither could I (it was a long time ago). So I’ve e-mailed the Society for Theatre Research and asked if they can come up with any possibilities. However, what I definitely did find out was that there NO radio production of the stage play on 29 November, despite what it says in John le Mesurier’s biography. That date was in the middle of the run of the series of half-hour radio plays. As far as I know, le Mesurier never appeared in any of the radio series. (The biography omits to mention the December 1946 television broadcast in the list of Mesurier?s appearances). The reference in the biography should probably have been to the television broadcast - which is not listed in le Mesurier’s biography. Incidentally, I found a lengthy article in the Radio Times dates 22 November 1946 on William, with a photo of John Clark - I photocopied it, and I’ve attached a scan of the photocopy.
So you see what you started? THE BIOGRAPHY YOU CITE FROM IS NOT A RELIABLE SOURCE! JOHN LE MESURIER WAS NEVER WRITTEN INTO THE RADIO SERIES AT ALL! He was in the stage play, and was in the televised Christmas special of the stage play. And, as an original unsourced comment, I am here to tell you that I have no memory of his being in the radio series at all, but he did become my friend at the opening of the stage play in Birmingham, and at the Granville, Walham Green, London. And it's my opinion, that to use one book as your main source is extremely limiting, and may not be a reliable source at all, as I have proved. And you have caused a lot of people and other users to spend a lot of unnecessary time on your nonsense. And I see you have back-tracked on your argument by removing other names from your list of celebrity actors in which you felt I did not belong. JohnClarknew (talk) 21:04, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
So how come you've been whining on for the past five days—to the point of being blocked for edit warring—if it didn't exist in the first place? Kinda ironic that really isn't it? I will be able to access the source later to see what McCann shows as the source of his information, although I suspect it may have been JLM's autobiography. BTW, could you stop copying your postings into different locations: I have to say the exact same thing in response to the original posting of this on the article talk page too, which is where this whole conversation belongs. As to your comment that "one book as your main source is extremely limiting", we didn't: multiple sources were used. I'm just bloody thankful we didn't rely on the memory of others to discover what they (mis)remember. - SchroCat (talk) 05:26, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
I rest my case. And I don't whine, I bray. Congratulations for getting yourself unblocked. JohnClarknew (talk) 06:01, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
Yes, I was unblocked because the admin involved realised I had done nothing wrong: I reverted you for a BLP violation, which was adding something unsourced into the article. Good thing too, as it was totally erroneous: you did not appear on radio in 1946, despite your many and long-winded protestations. - SchroCat (talk) 06:06, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm sure Jimbo doesn't want the JohnClarknew memoirs on his talk anymore. It's thread here is redundant. Shall we take it back to JLM? -- CassiantoTalk 07:44, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

A Lawsuit

A user above says the following:

It has nothing to do with whether we as a project start encouraging the circumventing any form of verifiability on the basis that COI editing is beneficial. It will lead to nothing more than skewed self-written hagiographies penned by PR machines on the one hand and open the door to libel actions on the other.
This brings up an interesting legal issue, possibly a class action by all celebrities. Here's the scenario:

Celebrity vs. Wikipedia, does 1-30 (The does will cover senior editors, founders and 30 users)
CELEBRITY ATTORNEY: My client has been libeled in the pages of Wikipedia in an article written by users who operate under assumed names.
JUDGE: Libeled? Does your client claim privacy privileges which are quite broad?
CELEBRITY ATTORNEY: No your honor, he knows that he is vulnerable to general criticism and accepts that. He is what they call a Notable, and as such becomes part of a category called "Biographies of Living Persons", and any content may only be changed at the discretion of other users, but not him. That is the crux of this action. He does not accept statements that hold him up to ridicule, scorn, and contempt.
WP ATTORNEY: My client claims immunity as a public website. It merely passes on what is being said elsewhere. All statements are sourced.
JUDGE: Does Wikipedia discriminate against any users?
WP ATTORNEY: Absolutely not. Almost all of its articles can be edited by anyone with access to the site, as we proclaim publicly.
JUDGE: Can't the plaintiff remove the offending language then?
CELEBRITY ATTORNEY: No your honor. Under Wikipedia's restrictive rules, celebrities cannot not change anything in articles detailing their lives, beyond possibly a fact here and there. He contravenes what is known as their Conflict of Interest rule, which is a core principle, and which conflicts with their own rules which my friend just stated.
JUDGE: I see. Then can you state your problem with individual users?
CELEBRITY ATTORNEY: They don't always provide a source for their unpleasant remarks, and many are the celebrities' fans, and in this case haters. Often-times untrue statements remain unchallenged.
JUDGE: Then I grant permission for you to bring any such users into court, as I rule they are not exempt.
CELEBRITY ATTORNEY: But how do I find them?
JUDGE: That's your problem. (raises gavel)
WP ATTORNEY: (Quickly) May I confer with my clients?
(After a short interlude.)
WP ATTORNEY: I think we can settle this, your honor. My clients are willing to change the rule. They will henceforth include the celebrity and notable BLPers as regular users. Of course, they will then have to conform to the same rules as everybody else.
JUDGE: Sounds good to me. I will sign an order to that effect. Case dismissed.

JohnClarknew (talk) 19:34, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

Why are you trying to your own PR work? You're obviously not good at it. Hire someone to deal with this. I recommend Arturo from BP. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 21:10, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Glad you got a handle. JohnClarknew (talk) 21:33, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Is the above a legal threat?--ukexpat (talk) 18:59, 24 April 2013 (UTC)
I don't think so, because it's A) a warning and not a threat (arguably) and B) not very credible. It doesn't look to have been written by anyone who's been in an actual courtroom. Herostratus (talk) 01:45, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
I thought a class action was when 30 people sued you, not the other way around. But in any case, the COI rule does not actually prohibit appropriate edits to articles. Indeed, we should acknowledge that when a COI editor's goal is to document the truth and correct inaccuracies, there is not actually a conflict of interest at all, according to WP:COI itself! However, I acknowledge that there is nothing more common on Wikipedia than for people to vehemently misread a policy because they find it convenient to, which can apply to anyone on any side of any issue. Wnt (talk) 18:51, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
WP:COI is actually not a policy. It's a "behavioral guideline". And it doesn't "prohibit" anything at all, just makes suggestions. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 19:27, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
No, this is a screenplay for a reality show I'm working on. I'm thinking of casting the celebrity with Alec Baldwin. I will accept casting suggestions from any fellow Wikipedians. I'm pitching it to Fox. JohnClarknew (talk) 21:16, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for your kindness in re-ordering the comments, Delicious. I did slightly change the script as you see, but you reverted it. I'm sure that was a mistake. The reason it is on Mr. Wales's user page is so that he gets to read something that goes to the heart of what I see as a problem that needs to be changed. I understand he has some influence. JohnClarknew (talk) 06:35, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
JohnClarknew, it is considered rude here to substantially edit comments after editors have replied to them. That is why I have reverted your changes. Jimbo's talk page is probably not a good place to be workshopping your screenplay, although if you'd like to contact me offline, I can offer some constructive criticism. I do not disagree with your assessment of your own situation (although I think your court case scenario is wholly unrealistic), but I suspect you would do better to contact Jimbo by email. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 16:08, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

I am reverting you for the second time. If you do this again, Carbuncle, you will have become the third revert. That will lead you to (where, Mr. Wales? This is YOUR talk page, not Mr. Carbuncle's). I am tired of your condescending attitude. A central pillar of WP is to use Common Sense. For me to insert the update as a NEW entry will clutter the page, and then you'd be content? Please exercise CS. JohnClarknew (talk) 18:42, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

Dunbar's number

Editors might optimize their interactions with other editors by considering Dunbar's number. (It was mentioned, in May 2011, in a link near the end of a discussion now archived at User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 76#More RfA and Swedish WP lessons.)
Wavelength (talk) 15:26, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

I loved his Grooming, Gossip, and the Evolution of Language. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 15:43, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Cf. MeatBall:TheTippingPoint. --Nemo 14:42, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

Bad category mixture.

Hello, you were a Building or structure in Indiana until I made this edit.--Müdigkeit (talk) 21:20, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

Possible pitfall in Wikipedia governance

is there some reason that Arbcomm cannot answer some correspondence, posted at Wikipedia_talk:Arbitration/Requests#Mandated Jerusalem discussion appears to be a bureaucratic morass? even when I posted on 3 or 4 personal talk pages for members of Arbcomm? Is this spring break for them or something? :-)

just wanted to mention this, and to solicit any feedback. I do feel that something about this process might need to be addressed. I appreciate any help, comments, ideas, input, etc etc. :-) thanks. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 02:26, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia's governance does not have pitfalls—it is filled, instead, with long drops to the mantle and outer core. ArbCom exists only to protect the strong against the weak. Although I am not in favor of its abolishment, I think that Wikipedia needs stronger institutions, including an elected assembly and content review boards, to deal with the cabals which have hijacked our political processes. Of course, most decisions should be local, but legislative and content decisions of consequence should be dealt with by elected officials chosen by the entire encyclopedia, not by ArbCom making every attempt under its establishing policies to legislate from the bench. All this leads to are remedies which are incongruous with the underlying problems that are supposed to be solved, with no other way of solving them.

Wikipedian content builders need to rise and take back the political process. Election of legislators, while it seems contrary to the fundamental precepts of this project, is the only way of giving content builders an (albeit indirect) form of control over the encyclopedia and of reining in the small special-interest groups and POV-pushers which masquerade for the "community". Wer900talk 04:09, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

The reason ArbCom takes so long to respond is that an official answer takes a week or two to wind its way through the process. The most common reasons that ArbCom didn't respond to people in my tenure were, in no particular order:
1) The correspondent failed to ask a question, or 1a) the correspondent failed to ask a question before everyone's attention span had expired. ArbCom gets probably a couple of emails a week that fall into this category, assuming the distribution hadn't changed. You've all probably seen things like this, where someone essentially gets in a dialogue with themselves, tacks a question on the end of their assumptions and reasoning, and emails the lot to the committee.
2) The correspondent is disliked, or 2a) the correspondent is feared. These are different--some people are just plain unpleasant to talk to, because they will just miss the point like they have done before, but others have a track record of trying to harass identified people. 2a doesn't actually happen all that often, but 2 happens all the time, especially in ban appeals.
3) The committee is not agreed on the answer. This happens when reasonable people post specific questions, and then the arbs have to find consensus on an answer, of some sort, in addition to all the case work, clarification, amendments, CHILDPROTECT matters, misbehaving admins, and OTHER private correspondence.
The committee has no SLA for private correspondence, such that much of it gets handled on a what-is-the-biggest-threat-to-Wikipedia-right-now basis, by the selected volunteers. You may be ignored not because your question is TL;DR, not because you're disliked, but simply because you've posed a question that needs Arbitrator consensus... and the committee as a whole is working on more important things. Jclemens (talk) 04:26, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
hmmm, okay. well, thanks for your replies and helpful input on that. 👍 Like --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 05:24, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Was this even an e-mail, or are you simply looking for discussion on this post of yours? It seems like an odd place to start that discussion, in part because it's probably a little-watched corner these days, and it's not a likely place to discuss policy/process changes. If you're waiting for discussion on your idea there, you could be waiting for a long, long time for anyone to stumble across it (✉→BWilkins←✎) 11:05, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

hi. well, I agree with you. Actually the place where I tried to start the discussion is at : Wikipedia_talk:Arbitration/Requests#Mandated Jerusalem discussion appears to be a bureaucratic morass. I should have been clearer about this before. That was in my previous link, but I shouldn't have assumed that everyone could click that.
if you want, could some of you, please read the note which was left there, and let me klnow what you think?? thanks. still not seeing any replies yet. thanks. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 11:09, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, as soon as I saw the phrase "all possible wordings" I realized that it was unworkable, and I can understand why nobody else replied. Besides, mixing ArbComm and RFC's seems a bit odd ... Not much else to say (✉→BWilkins←✎) 11:33, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
well, I appreciate your reply. however, not sure that I follow your point here. how does the phrase "all possible wordings" relate to this item? that is not a part of my idea. I think that the idea is fairly workable. this is a response to the process for an RFC which Arbcomm itself set up. feel free to read the next section there, which further explains it. You can read it at:
thanks. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 11:45, 26 April 2013 (UTC)
ok, opened a request for Arbcomm at Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests#Clarification_request:_WP:ARBPIA.2FJerusalem. just letting you know. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 02:27, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Just to update matters here. I replied to Steve (Sm8900) at WT:RFAR, and he has now, it seems, found the right page to post at - the best link is Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Clarification and Amendment#Clarification request: WP:ARBPIA/Jerusalem. Apologies for the delayed response, but some of the pages you initially posted to are rather obscure (as others have pointed out). I've asked my fellow arbs and the clerks to help keep an eye on them, though it is difficult to keep track of postings to the pages of closed cases (there are many such pages). To pick up on Jclemens's point about e-mail, some of his observations are true, but in this case no e-mail was received about this. That might, ironically, have produced a faster response. Oh, and on pitfalls, I've never yet seen Wikipedia's governance (ArbCom is not governance, by the way, Wikipedia doesn't really have an established governance system) compared to the inner structure of the Earth, that is a new one on me! :-) I'll now ping my colleagues so they are aware of the clarification request - though it will likely take days to a week before enough arbs will have opined there on what (if anything) is needed. Carcharoth (talk) 19:27, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
hi there. ok, well thanks for your reply. I appreciate it. I will keep all of your points in mind. thanks very much. --Steve, Sm8900 (talk) 11:34, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Category intersections by CatScan or wikisearch incategory

I think WP's current capability of wikisearch with multiple "incategory:" (to find articles which appear in multiple specified categories) is very good. As explained in general essay "wp:Category intersection" just list multiple categories with prefix "incategory:" in the wikisearch box, Search:[______]. For example, I could remember the first name of that famous paleontogist from New York (as "Stephen..."), and I remember he talked with local baseball player Joe Dimaggio, and so the wikisearch was easy:

Hence, among the 685 pages in "Category:People from Queens" (NYC), this palenotologist's name was matched, as "Stephen Jay Gould". Although the wikisearch categories do not also scan the related sub-categories, there is a wp:Toolserver tool, wp:CatScan to scan for articles which also match within the sub-categories. Those features seem to handle over 90% of what people have requested for category-intersection lists. -Wikid77 (talk) 13:05, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

I had no idea the search allowed you to do that. Presumably, it would be relative child's play to set up a form (?) Formerip (talk) 16:42, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
One feature that would be nice would be a NOT operator so you could search for articles that were in category A but not in category B. A use case would be to easily add articles to WikiProjects. It would be nice to be able to generate a list of articles in Category:2000 novels but not in Category:WikiProject Novels articles. I could easily add the articles in this list to WikiProject Novels. GabrielF (talk) 16:35, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
I have a vague memory of when the search interface was updated to include such things. I've used the "intitle" search operator for some time, but not many people seemed to have noticed the changes. It might be worth pinpointing when the changes was made, and also notifying the people elsewhere on this talk page and in other places who are in uproar about the categorisation system. Those who have any experience with the categorisation system (I did for a few years about five years ago) are probably a bit shocked at how many people don't really follow how it works at all, and the amount of misunderstanding going on around this. Carcharoth (talk) 20:28, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
It's not enough for it to exist, it needs to be made usable. I ought to be able to type "female American novelists" in the search box and at least have the category intersection offered to me as an option. The only simple way to use a category currently is to view its contents. Looie496 (talk) 00:26, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
These "expert" tools are in a sense worse than useless, because they make it seem to the people in a position to develop Wikipedia like there's not a problem, even though nobody else knows they exist. I even forgot about incategory. And the toolserver seems like a graveyard of grand ideas that will never be routinely used, and which probably will stop working sooner or later anyway. In order for them to be relevant to users they have to be both easily available from and documented plainly as options within the standard search interface. They should be integrated with the interface (the checkboxes for namespaces in the advanced search should apply rather than having a category for namespace in a tabular output from Catscan for example) Toolserver development needs to be available in a place where apps have ready access to page text, and where in turn normal pages can transclude their output, and where they're not subject to EU/German law, and not under special rules and invite-only development but are directly part of the WMF projects. Wnt (talk) 13:16, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Wikid77, that is a useful tip for people unfamiliar with the incategory prefix, but as you note, it does not include subcategories. To tweak your example a little, if you wanted a list of American writers from New York, you would not find Stephen Jay Gould because he is not an "American writer", he is a "Jewish American writer" (not to mention he is not "people from New York", he is "people from Queens"). This is a symptom of the issue which started the discussions here. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 15:12, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Category:Kazakh-language media

Should there be a Category:Kazakh-language media? --Normash (talk) 12:16, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Now it's been created. --Normash (talk) 13:51, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
But see also: Category:Kazakhstani_media.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:52, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

The greatest movie that never was

Jimbo, did you see this excellent piece about a movie hoax? The coverage of the hoax is not too shabby, don't you think? I mean, for a non-real journalist, of course. - 2001:558:1400:10:145F:5A4:53AC:5EA2 (talk) 17:00, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Categories vs. Lists

Wikipedia:Category intersection is another way of saying "let's use a relational database instead of a hierarchical database, and then use SQL to create various lists." For example, a novelist has a gender, nationality, ethnicity, place of birth, associated countries, awards, nominations, genre, century - and all of those can be plural. So you use a formatted list or set of tags to describe the novelst, and then any number of lists can be created from all the article in the encyclopedia. Lists of popular interest might be kept, such as American femal novelists, but absolutely anycombination could be created on the fly. If you look at NNDB it appears that's what they might have been aiming at. We have Wikipedia:Persondata which may also have aimed at that. (talk) 21:41, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

RFC/English Wikipedia readership survey 2013

Above, User Rd232 said they'd like to put something to our readership. I've got something I'd like to ask them, too, so I've started Wikipedia:Requests for comment/English Wikipedia readership survey 2013. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 17:14, 1 May 2013 (UTC)

The handling of child pornography on Wikimedia Commons

Jimbo, just to make sure you don't have to start another WTF section here, I want to point you at a blog post I have written about Common's handling of child pornography and the actions of one particular admin there. I know this was mentioned in passing in the thread about Commons further up the page, but I don't want you to be blindsided by another op-ed or report about this in the media if you missed that part of the discussion. Thanks. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 20:47, 1 May 2013 (UTC)

As a Commons oversighter, I can only say one thing: you made a fool of yourself, DC. You better do your homework next time (and in the meantime, read about ways of contacting the WMF in an emergency). odder (talk) 22:01, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Odder, you'll have to be a bit more specific if you want me to understand how I've made a fool of myself or what you are suggesting about contacting the WMF. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 22:36, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
I guess you're gonna have to figure this out by yourself, sorry! odder (talk) 22:55, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
This is a pretty unhelpful attitude for a holder of advanced permissions. InconvenientCritic (talk) 23:03, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
What is pretty unhelpful is that DC didn't actually read on how to contact the WMF, or, in this very specific case, how to contact the oversight team. If they actually read the page I linked above, they would've known that there is a way of contacting people with, as you wrote, advanced permissions, 24 hours a day, since we oversighters live in different timezones. And, by the way, welcome to Wikipedia, InconvenientCritic, glad your first ever edit was to Jimbo's talk page. odder (talk) 23:23, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for the welcome, odder! How about you address the contents of the blog post? InconvenientCritic (talk) 23:38, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
How about you start using your real account first? Then we'll talk. odder (talk) 23:40, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
That's an odd attitude for someone who, putatively holds the trust of the community to take.InconvenientCritic (talk) 23:43, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Odder, the unfortunate reality is that there are only a few Commons admins that I trust to do the right thing in these cases. I choose to contact the WMF directly. That has thus far worked well, although I believe they agree that improvements could be made to reduce delays. What training are "oversighters" given in the laws regarding child pornography? Do oversighters continue to have access to images they "delete"? What is the liability of an "oversighter" who necessarily views these images when handling a report? Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:34, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
"liability for viewing"? What? Choyoołʼįįhí:Seb az86556 > haneʼ 03:41, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Oversighters are volunteers with some additional user rights, and are not provided any training by the WMF with regards to child pornography laws (though we are aware of the internal WMF policies for dealing with child pornograpy, and are in a constant touch with the legal team whenever illegal pictures are reported to us). Yes, we do have access to images that are suppressed, as long as they are not deleted on the server side. I am not aware of any liabilities related to viewing images when handling a report—as far as I am concerned, these are same for all Internet users who stumble upon innocent images and report them to authorities. odder (talk) 09:46, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Odder, if the oversighters are not provided with any training in the applicable laws, how can they be expected to ensure that Commons is not in violation of them? If I contact the oversight team with a request to delete an image that I believe to be child pornography, I assume the oversighter handling the request reviews the image before deleting it. Leaving aside all of the images where the subject appears to be underage, if we have someone uploading sexually explicit images and claiming that the subject is 16 or 17, on what basis does the oversighter decide whether or not to delete the image? Laws in some countries may not categorize this as child pornography. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 11:13, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
It is not our job as volunteers to ensure that Commons is not in violation of any laws, DC. The general procedure in case of questionable pictures is to suppress them (as in "better be safe than sorry"), and contact the WMF legal team with necessary information. IANAL, but as far as I am aware, the only applicable laws for the content are those of the US (on the federal and possibly also state level). odder (talk) 11:28, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
One simple solution would be to modify the shared accounts policy and give a commons admin account to the FBI child porn division. This account would have strict limits and need to be discussed with WMF. They can afford to staff the account and email 24/7 far more than we can. They know the finer points of the law in the USA and can contact other countries concerning the laws governing uploaders. Another solution would be a 'blank page' bot activated by a template that any user can use until commons admin can view the image and delete or DR. We cannot stop all illegal images from appearing on commons for a few hours but we can find ways of removing them faster. I feel we are part of the solution and not part of the problem because we can trace uploaders when we wish to. Once the uploaders realize this then they will move on.--Canoe1967 (talk) 22:59, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Just to spare y'all having to read the article: It's about explicit pictures of 16 and 17 years olds, respectively, which were not deleted immediately, but instead were nominated for deletion. --Conti| 23:02, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
DC, to answer the question you repeatedly pose in that blog post: most likely not. While I think you are right in wanting those images deleted, from the way you describe them it does not seem that these would be considered child pornography under the law. Such laws do not prohibit any depiction of nudity, but instead cover sexually explicit depictions. As these images are described in the post, it reads like they were bland depictions of the genital area without any sexually suggestive aspects. Laws on child pornography typically do not prohibit such images.
Furthermore, it seems to me you have not considered the possibility that these images were examples of teenage exhibitionism, i.e. that the uploaders of the images and the subjects depicted within them are one and the same. I am not sure if any legal jurisdictions have modified their child pornography laws to exempt this from the definition, but practically speaking it would be misleading to characterize voluntary uploads of bland depictions of nudity as pornography.
The call for desysopping Buck over this issue seems to thus have a rather flimsy basis going off your blog post. You are certainly right to call for such images being deleted as Commons already has a glut of penis and vagina with no need to include images that, regardless of technical legality, would still create undesirable legal and ethical concerns.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 23:07, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
I think it is quite likely that the images were examples of teenage exhibitionism. While that may be relevant in a case of two teens sending naked images to each other, this is a case of someone uploading the images to servers owned by the WMF. If you want to play internet lawyer, I cannot stop you, but I will not play along. You should probably keep in mind that all of the images mentioned were deleted by the WMF without discussion. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 23:20, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
As I said, I believe it was appropriate to ask for such images to be deleted and I would not be surprised if the WMF similarly considers anything legally questionable on this matter to be of sufficient concern to delete even if it might be technically legal. That does not mean you should throw around such provocative terms when it would be of dubious accuracy in this context. It is especially important to be mindful that you are talking about an identified living person and calling for action against him when using such dubious terminology.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 23:49, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
I use the terms that seem most accurate and most appropriate. I have absolutely no qualms about calling for Mattbuck to lose his admin rights over this. I think that is the least that can be done given the circumstances. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:17, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
This strikes me as a rigged game. You used the same non-emergency deletion process that any yahoo can use when they see a blurry picture, and then you complain because it took, what, part of a day for the picture to get deleted? It looks like Mattbuck "kept" the image only in the sense of transferring it to a broader DR about more such images. He is guilty only of doing the exact same thing you did - sending the image to deletion without taking any extraordinary action about it. Anybody is free to grab a phone, call Wikimedia, call the cops, whatever, but neither of you did that.
But then again, maybe you shouldn't have. I haven't seen the picture, but the people here are saying it wasn't overtly sexual and was actually legal, in which case a plain old DR is perfectly OK.
Last but not least, I am sure I have actually seen half-naked little girls on broadcast television provided it is a show about some faraway country like Vanuatu. So it's not like Wikipedia - barring reason to think the image is actually illegal - should automatically assume content is non-educational without taking a moment for a few editors to look at it. Wnt (talk) 23:40, 1 May 2013 (UTC) I indeed seem to have been confused on some details here, and I don't have the time now to figure out the facts. Wnt (talk) 04:48, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Well yeah, but taking a step back and using reasoned thought would deny DC his ability to both waive his arms around like an attention whore and spam his blog on "that site". Resolute 23:51, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Delicious Carbuncle is a troll, pure and simple. Allow me to justify myself: he consistently complains about "bad" images on Commons, but never actually tries to use the systems in place there to deal with these things. Instead of nominating images for deletion (as anyone can do, it's very easy, there's even a button to do it automagically) he would rather post here - on a different project - about it. He calls for my deadminship on a blog rather than attempting to go through the processes to actually have it happen. This is trolling. Wikipaedocracy is not the first gutter press to have a fixation with me, and frankly I don't care. Put simply: put up or shut up. If you think I need to be deadmined, start a discussion about it on Commons. Otherwise go back under your bridge. -mattbuck (Talk) 00:29, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
I rather think DC uses these methods because the systems in place at Commons often produces a result at odds with what a reasonable adult would expect to happen. Kevin (talk) 01:25, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
There is a common pattern to DC's behaviour, and it plays out over and over and over again. 1. Pick an image. 2 (Over)react to its existence. 3. Write a self-indulgent blog entry about it on an external site. 4. Spam said blog entry on Jimbo's talk page. The step that is pretty much always missing is "follows procedure". In this case though, it seems he did follow a procedure, then proceeded to whine because he didn't get instant gratification when he used a process that isn't designed for quick deletion. There doesn't seem to have been an attempt at contacting oversight, for instance. The truth is, I think DC's methods are counterproductive. I know that any time I see a post signed by him, I simply roll my eyes and skip whatever he's written. I doubt very much I am the only one. And that isn't a problem with our collective attitudes. That is a problem with his. Resolute 01:41, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Sorry to correct you, but DC at no point tried to get the image deleted. I nominated the breasts image, and Rburke nominated all the user's uploads. DC didn't even comment on the DR in the 19 hours it took the images to be deleted, nor in the 4 days after that before the DR got closed. -mattbuck (Talk) 02:14, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
And sorry to correct you, Matt, but the reason the images were deleted was that I contacted the WMF. Which is what you should have done (but first, you should have deleted the images). Do care to explain why you didn't do that? Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:11, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for the correction, Matt. And DC - So basically you are telling me that after spending so much time whining about how they won't delete images you don't like, you are now whining because they are seeking to delete images you don't like? Resolute 13:34, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
A little over a year ago, these deletion debates included Beta_M, remember he was the CP distributor globally blocked by the WMF, and you and other Commons admins then went snivelling on his talk page to commiserate. John lilburne (talk) 12:10, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Wnt, as usual, I have no idea what you are talking about. What you said bears no relation to what I wrote in the blog post. Please do not comment if you are going to mis-state facts. I had the images deleted by contacting the WMF directly, not by starting deletion requests. I am not complaining about how long the deletions took. The Devil's Advocate has not seen the images in question, so do not place any stock in their opinions about them. I would appreciate it if you could strike the incorrect statements in your post (and then stay out this discussion). Thanks. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 03:26, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
I didn't see the images, of course, but your description of them certainly gives the impression that these were not images of a sexually explicit nature. Were these images more serious than the mundane genital shots added by many legal adults I would expect you to make that sufficiently clear. The premise of your argument is that an admin was not showing sufficient interest in removing illegal child pornography. Such accusations are rather serious and, as it stands, do not seem to be well-founded in this situation. Again, you were right to push for these images to be deleted, but that does not mean you are right about the entire situation.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 04:23, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
It does look like I had some facts confused, misinterpreting your and others' commentary. Wnt (talk) 04:48, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Thank you, Wnt. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 11:20, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
The Devil's Advocate, why was I right to get these images deleted? If I was right to do so, should Mattbuck have not done exactly the same thing? What part of my "rather serious" accusation is not well-founded? Delicious carbuncle (talk) 11:20, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
I have answered your first and third questions several times. As to the second, perhaps it will help if you tell us how you found out about these images. If Mattbuck's deletion requests are what brought them to your attention then it seems he did enough to get them deleted. Perhaps he should be advised to not pussyfoot around with such images, but desysopping is a bit over-the-top.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 16:21, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
If I recall correctly, I probably found out about these images the same way Mattbuck did - I believe they were listed on his galleries of newly categorized nudity and sexuality images. Are you claiming that if I noticed the images because Mattbuck nominated them for deletion and I contacted the WMF after seeing those discussions and the WMF deleted the images, then Mattbuck did the right thing because the images got deleted? That is even more twisted than your usual twisted logic. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 20:36, 2 May 2013 (UTC)

Commons isn't getting better, it seems

Are the adults at WMF ever going to get around to demanding respect for fellow human beings at commons? Any father of a daughter (like you, or I) should be enraged at crap like commons:Commons:Deletion_requests/File:Mardi_Gras_Flashing_-_Color.jpg#File:Mardi_Gras_Flashing_-_Color.jpg. I'm not upset about the boobs, but I am appalled by the incredible lack of decency on the part of the people commenting there. --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 23:56, 26 April 2013 (UTC)

I think we need to remember the daughters who aren't in the picture also. If one of them loses control over a topless cellphone photo, how humiliated will they feel? I think they will feel less humiliated if we don't suppress the "background noise" of photos like this on the Internet than if we do. Normality is a competition, a zero sum game, and when we push one girl up in the rankings, some other one must come down to occupy that place of social disapproval from those foolishly judgmental about ordinary human anatomy. This is true no matter whether society's threshold is an exposed breast, an unveiled face, or a flash of ankle. The difference is that the one we show now in some way volunteered to step out of the fold, and may therefore feel less injured than the one who takes her place. And that when we move the threshold with our uncensored coverage, women everywhere are just a little freer. Therefore, we should simply go by the routine policies that apply, maintain the image and forget about it. One day people throughout the world, moved by legal precedents like in New York and Canada, and heroic protesters like FEMEN, will come to appreciate that there is nothing any more improper about a woman's body than a man's. Wnt (talk) 03:56, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Insofar as there are arguments that this image is harmful, it's harmful to an individual. We cannot justify harm to an individual on the grounds that it's generally good for the world. Individuals matter; that's why we have BLP in the first place. Ken Arromdee (talk) 19:18, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Consensus is great, bit only as long as it agrees with you. I am not sure what you hope to accomplish by filing a complaint predicated on an appeal to emotion fallacy. Resolute 04:44, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Appeal to emotion, yep. Emotions are not false, they're real. They count. argumentum ad passiones is inducing emotions, such as greed, hatred, fear or pity in the listener, solely in order to beguile them. It is not false or wrong in any way to take into account how our behaviour affects the emotions of others. It's natural and normal for humans and, I think, a number of other primates. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 13:48, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Depressingly the 'keep' votes all centered on 'is it legal?' ignoring moral, ethical or even 'encyclopedic value' grounds. Why when I saw this here did I know that Russavia would be involved.... Only in death does duty end (talk) 07:49, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Why doesn't my argument above count as ethical grounds? The problem here is not emotionalism or moralism per se, but a lack of imagination. You see only the single most easily pictured possibility and not the many less likely scenarios. Wnt (talk) 15:13, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
The day may come when no girl regrets flashing, and every girl is thrilled to see herself flashing on a webpage visited a thousand times a day. Until then, putting this image on that article is callous and morally irresponsible. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 15:37, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
This discussion was about the Commons image - I'm not even sure what article you're referring to at the moment. Wnt (talk) 16:40, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
For a while, the image was at the top of Exhibitionism. I forgot where I was. Still, for all the same reasons, it's wrong to host it on Commons. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 17:58, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, it might have been more debatable there - how well do we know that what the girl was doing was "exhibitionism" rather than something else? (As can be exemplified by asking whether you would categorize her as an "exhibitionist") The article starts by describing a festival much like Mardi Gras, but doesn't actually mention Mardi Gras and focuses more on individual decisions than group action. Undressing in the locker room for a swimming pool isn't exhibitionism (remember nowadays the 'polite' assumption that everyone is heterosexual is gone) Is Mardi Gras more like that or more like an individual who decides to go streaking? Wnt (talk) 18:32, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
Hm. Anyone who knows me on Commons should know I'm a keen advocate of improving respect for BLP and privacy - but I find it hard to see how this image could be deleted within Commons' current policies. There is good evidence from the source Flickr stream that image was taken in a public place in the US, and that subject was well aware of the photographs being taken - so legality of hosting is not an issue unless we want to argue about age. The photograph was taken in 2008, so well into the Internet age, which reduces the moral "she might not have known it would end up on the internet 20 years later" argument that sometimes applies (which is anyway weakened here by the clear exhibitionist intent). There are good arguments made at WP:BLPN for not using the image in the Exhibitionism article, but to justify deletion from Commons, you'd have to alter Commons policy - and I'm not even sure how. I've argued for explicitly or implicitly applying the precautionary principle commons:Commons:Project scope/Precautionary principle, which as written is for copyright issues, to BLP - but I don't think that would cover this case. Feel free to make suggestions. Rd232 talk 09:19, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

Kept: Please note that Commons is not English Wikipedia, and what may not be ok on English Wikipedia does not make it not ok for Commons. This photo is from this Flickr set entitled "Mardi Gras 2008 (Wild Girl Edition)". Here is the same person with a camera stuck up to her boobs, so she is well aware (and obviously consented to the photos being taken). One will see that she is present on the left hand side of the photo. If one looks at the rest of the set, we see all sorts of public exhibitionism (which is what Mardi Gras in New Orleans is famous for!), including a photo of a guy getting a blowjob. OK, so people on English Wikipedia object to it's usage on that project, but this photo is utilised on numerous projects on articles related to exhibitionism, so scope is automatically met as far as this project is concerned. There is also no problem with COM:IDENT in relation to this photo.

It would be great in future if people, instead of drumming up dramuh elsewhere to import to Commons, would do a little homework (it took me all of 10 seconds) and present this before making out that Commons is broken blah blah blah. Based upon the above information, appealing to emotion fallacy has no more sway on this project, as would the argument of this woman possibly being someone's mother.

So in light of all the above, we'll close this circus down now so y'all can go and do something that is useful for this or other projects. russavia (talk) 05:20, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

Russavia, this statement is so horrific that I am more convinced than ever that commons is ethically broken. You should be ashamed.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 01:27, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
How the hell did someone like Russavia wind up in a position of authority, again? Does he have dirt on somebody or something? Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:18, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Yes, Jimbo, you are right. As somebody said yesterday Russavia is just a little troll with a very dirty mouth, yet Russavia is an admin and a bureaucrat on Commons that "is ethically broken". Now, Jimbo, as co-founder of Wikipedia maybe you could do something about that "ethically broken" Commons? (talk) 18:00, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
So you think that because she doesn't know she's being videoed by the camera 6 inches from her chest? It was a good close IMO - clearly shows there are no "did not consent" issues. -mattbuck (Talk) 10:25, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Someone that is flashing their breasts at a Mardi Gras parade most probably isn't expecting the photos to appear on a top 10 website. People do stuff in public which is a momentary thing, and haven't thought through the consequences of the actions, its a few minutes of fun, caught up in some event at one particular time. For a top 10 website to upload the images from a flickr account where the images are NOT indexed by Google is a sleazy sort of thing to do. For others to justify the collation of the images is pretty slimy. That is what Jimbo is hinting at when he says "this statement is so horrific that I am more convinced than ever that commons is ethically broken." BTW watch as you walk about there is also pool of slimy at your feet. John lilburne (talk) 10:44, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, I guess my boyfriend is leaking. -mattbuck (Talk) 10:48, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Should we send arm-bands? You seem to be out of your depth here. John lilburne (talk) 11:26, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

Can people unlearn their naked shame? Count Iblis (talk) 15:59, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

This is less complicated than that. There are already plenty of perfectly good cultures where women's breasts are routinely visible. We don't have to do basic research to see if it is possible. The U.S. culture is just one of those societies like the Taliban that have sexist taboos about parts of women's bodies. Any decision we make here should be equally applicable to images of unveiled women from Saudi Arabia, for example. Wnt (talk) 16:52, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
If Wikipedia cannot consider the idea of harm to a person because different things count as harm in different cultures, you've pretty much discarded the idea that Wikipedia may consider the possibility of harm to a person at all. This contradicts Wikipedia policy. Ken Arromdee (talk) 19:27, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
What I think is that we shouldn't delete something merely because someone thinks "even if someone consented to being photographed and video-taped that person will surely regret it in the future and will not want to immortalize those crazy banner days of youth!"--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 19:59, 27 April 2013 (UTC)
I agree here. If we are allowed to invoke the unknown future, one can just as well argue that if in the future being naked is the norm and people would feel embarrassed if they are seen wearing clothes, all pictures of people wearing clothes should be deleted. Count Iblis (talk) 21:42, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

Incidentally there is a BLPN discussion: Wikipedia:BLPN#Photos_of_private_people_doing_things_they_might_be_embarrassed_about_later and one on the talk page of Exhbiitionism: Talk:Exhibitionism#Image_at_top_of_page which might bear reading. Half the arguments seem to be "keeping it is legal, so we shouldn't care about the subject of the image". Ken Arromdee (talk) 19:27, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

I come here to add a link to the same BLPN discussion that Ken Arromdee just mentioned. I won't repeat here the comments I've posted there. Newyorkbrad (talk) 19:35, 27 April 2013 (UTC)

Commons isn't the only thing that's broken. When the Wikimedia Foundation can send what amounts to a cease and desist letter to someone who's editing historical logic subjects by adding useful information, but ignore the likes of Russavia, Wnt and mattbuck, then that foundation too, is broken. Good to see you lot have a solid grasp of what the "terms of service" should be used for. Not. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:10, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

We could also replace all such contentious pictures by digitial ones that are ab initio computer generated. They then depict people who look 100% real but these are not pictures of people who really exist. Count Iblis (talk) 13:07, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

Not sure whether that is meant as a serious suggestion, but I can't think of an situation where replacing a photo with a computer generated alternative would be a good idea.
In any case, consensus seems clear and the photo has been replaced, so I reckon this is a discussion to continue, if at all, at Commons. Formerip (talk) 13:13, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
In the media, when there is concern for the privacy of people the faces of such people are blurred. What I'm suggesting is similar. Since the real identities of people don't matter for us anyway in these sorts of cases, we can just replace the real people by fake ones. So, one can illustrate the act of a woman showing her breasts safely in the appropriate Wiki article. It can be based on the same real world event; we take the real picture and we then modify the woman so that she looks totally different. Count Iblis (talk) 14:01, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Give them a finger and they'll take your whole hand. I've seen some commercial TV shows that have been intimidated by bogus legal things - they end up half blur - numbers on license plates, logos on T-shirts, brand names on boxes, images of people on the street - once they get that first little bit of momentum down the slippery slope, they don't stop until it is too sad to even watch. Commons recognizes that private people doing non-profit educational writing have the right to take pictures on a public street without some Soviet minder running along behind them saying "don't photo this" every time something seems in some way unseemly to someone. Wnt (talk) 15:00, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Why is it that every reasonable proposal is hijacked by someone making a poorly informed "slippery slope" argument? Logos on t-shirts and brand names on boxes are blurred because such things appearing on screen are seen as essentially free "advertising". If a given television series utilises, for example, cans of Coca-Cola in product placement, they will almost certainly blur out a Pepsi logo if it happens to appear. Even if they don't have a competing advertiser, things are usually blurred anyway, as allowing logos to appear lessens the incentive for the company in question to purchase advertising on the show. That is a decision made by advertising departments, not legal departments. There is no legal consideration in the matter whatsoever. Until Wikipedia begins selling advertisements, your argument is a complete non-starter.
Also, I can't resist making a finger joke, so: Give Commons a finger and they'll find somewhere to put it... Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 15:27, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Russavia says above "Please note that Commons is not English Wikipedia...'", as if we're not all we're not all aware of that by now? Yes Russavia, you're quite correct; degenerate, prurient behavior gets one blocked on, while on Commons it gets congratulations and high-fives from the top down. Tarc (talk) 13:55, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
  • So, Wikipedia is similar to Saudi Arabia while Commons is similar to Britain? Count Iblis (talk) 14:21, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
  • More like a crack house to a cigar lounge, really. Tarc (talk) 15:44, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
  • I rarely ever venture over to Commons, let alone check any of the discussions, but I'm certain I lose IQ points every time I do so. I'm aware that there have been some attempts made in past years to make it less of an amateur porn hosting service, but it seems that other problems are cropping up and/or getting worse all the time. As far as I can tell based on the discussion linked by SB Johnny, a lot of the editors there would do well to read "Don't be a dick" (but ohgod that's not a Commons policy! like zoinks!). While everyone wastes time making sure they retain as many pictures of boobs as possible, deletion requests for files that are blatant copyvios can remain almost untouched for months at a time (last month I was informed that a "speedy deletion" is generally considered anything that takes less than two months for someone to get around to closing). Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 14:18, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
  • I have a difficult time getting hot and bothered about this specific image, it having at least theoretical encyclopedic applicability. That's my opinion and I appreciate that I might be in the minority here. The basic issue is that the administrative corps at Commons has been effectively taken over by a clique of individuals holding aggressive pro-porn ideas about Commons' scope, rallying around the slogan "Wikipedia is not censored." Change there is not going to come internally, it is going to come through the volition of WMF, who is going to have to either shut down Commons in favor of image hosting by the language encyclopedias themselves, or else clean house on The Usual Suspects who have wormed their way into the Commons Administrative corps (which would be highly controversial), or is just going to have to accept that there will always be a certain percentage of prurient Commons images and that periodic crises will recur owing to the massive divergence between the ethical standards and perception of their project's scope by Commons administrators and the ethical standards and perception of what an encyclopedia should be of the mass of human society. For me, I will not participate in Commons and I urge other volunteers at En-WP to do likewise. Use the { { keep local } } template whenever you upload files and make sure that bots don't abscond with images to Commons. Carrite (talk) 15:30, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Maybe change could come from over there, if a similar amount of energy were invested into moaning about it there as opposed to here, where it makes zero difference. Just thinking out loud. Formerip (talk) 15:56, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
The problem, of course, is that there is very little centralized discussion at Commons. The closest they have is the Village Pump, and that sometimes goes days without any new comments. Moving the discussion there rather than here, where it actually has an audience, would be... what's the opposite of pissing in the ocean? Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 15:59, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
What's the point of an audience that doesn't disagree but has limited interest (speaking for myself)? The flipside of a tumbleweed-strewn village pump is that if team prude go over there with a proposal, team pervert are going to have to turn up or face defeat. Of course, reality is it would likely take a while for both sides to work through their issues and start engaging constructively, but the stir-up-drama-on-Jimbo's-talkpage strategy is definitely starting to look a bit George Osborne. Formerip (talk) 16:13, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Now, now, I suspect you are exactly as representative a sample of the audience here as I am — that is to say, not in the least. You have the ability to ignore this conversation; no one is forcing you to read it or to reply to it. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:14, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, the simple solution would be for the WMF to actually start giving a damn about what people are doing to their projects. 99% of the problems on Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons could be solved instantly if someone from above exercised some executive decision-making instead of deferring to ArbCom (and whatever the godawful equivalent at Commons is) to decide weighty, legally complex issues in which the people making ex cathedra decisions have absolutely no expertise. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 15:36, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Commons editors and admins will have tears (of joy) in the eyes at the idea of being left alone by the prudes of Béria Lima msg 15:51, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Yes, dismiss everyone's opinion by not reading it and calling them "prudes." Everyone get your stuff together, pack up your things; we have a winner. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 15:55, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
I saw 2 opinions dear, one disregarding all laws in favour of a "she might regret go naked in the street when she is 50" and another to fork my home project, neither I find - as a woman or commons admin - valid to a answer. And when one doesn't want to fight... Béria Lima msg 16:12, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
Nonsense. "Disregarding all laws" sounds as if you're saying we're legally bound to post as many pictures of naked people we can find. Since I have no idea what "valid to a answer" means, I'll just stop right here. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 16:15, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
There have been enough legal threats that when none of them pan out it is worth noting. The ethical arguments are just as barren, but that is harder to quantify. The slippery slope is indeed open for business. Some immediate steps down the slope that deserve to be answered:
  • Do we delete or avoid all use of pictures of FEMEN protests because the women might change their minds?
  • Do we cut out any images of women in Muslim countries going unveiled in public whether as a protest or if given as evidence that "Islam isn't/wasn't that strict in that country at that period of time because some women felt free to do so"?
  • Do we blur the faces of protesters at an anti-gang protest in Mexico City because cartel people might recognize them and decide to kill them?
  • Do we omit coverage of American servicewomen involved in a political action against rape because their fellow servicemembers might target them for sexual abuse (with about a 99% chance of not being punished)?
The problem with being God is that you'll have to spend all your time on these weighty matters, deciding whether each and every picture is really a good thing or a bad thing to post. You'll need those plenipotentiary powers from WMF so that none dare naysay your divine omniscience. Wnt (talk) 17:21, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
So your concern is that Wikipedia editors shouldn't be in the business of making content decisions about what to include and not include in Wikipedia. Seriously? Formerip (talk) 17:43, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
No, I'm saying they should be making those decisions based on the core priority of education, instead of substituting new goals. Wnt (talk) 17:59, 28 April 2013 (UTC)
I don't know the answers to those questions. In fact, no one does, because in so far as the questions relate to future images, those questions have not yet been raised. Commons, like Wikipedia, is governed by consensus. Ideally, that consensus should be informed, and should not by the result of a pack of disrespectful trolls chanting Borg-like "Wikipedia is not censored" every time someone raises a valid question.
The solution to this, like the solution to most problems, is structure. Maybe file uploading isn't a right that all, or even most, users should have. Maybe we could have something similar to PC protection, where anyone without the file uploader right would have to submit their upload for review. Maybe that review would determine that, after the first 2,000 images of naked breasts, that 4,002nd nipple just isn't unique enough to warrant spending five megabytes of the foundation's server space. Maybe instead of just accepting every image of a topless woman that crops up, Commons editors should give serious consideration as to whether those images fulfill an extant educational need.
I can understand a few images of this sort of thing being educational; really, I can. Maybe we need ten, or even twenty of them to keep everything diverse. But sixty-seven? Really?
Hell, the answer to that could be "yes" for all I know, but we have to be able to discuss it. And the current state of things at Commons is that things are not being discussed properly; bullies like Russavia are steamrolling over conversation and driving away people who disagree with him.
And yes, it is reasonable to consider blurring out faces in images like this. The law doesn't say we have to do it, but for God's sake, is it really that much to ask that we at least be able to discuss it on a case-by-case basis, even when we're not required to? Is it really that much of an inconvenience to the project/s that maybe, from time to time, editors might determine that a certain individual should not be personally identifiable in a given image? Is it actually absurd to assume that consensus can be agreed upon for reasons other than potential legal ramifications and WIKIPEDIA IS NOT CENSORED!!!!11! Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:37, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── And yes, it is reasonable to consider blurring out faces in images like this... - no it isn't. We really have to get away from blurring (or related things like cropping) being a good option - it is far too commonly the case that the subject can still be identified fairly easily. See commons:COM:BLP#Identification. Rd232 talk 00:45, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Yes, because every woman who flashes her breasts at Mardi Gras is exactly as identifiable as the Mona Lisa. Thank you for showing me the error of my ways. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:48, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
I know it's tempting to look at pretty pictures, but the text in the guideline isn't actually just lorem ipsum. The third sentence is in fact Outside of the image, clues may be obtained from the image title, description, origin, source url, geolocation and date. (Source URL is particularly relevant for Flickr-sourced images, as the original unblurred image is then just a click away from the file page.) Well, feel free to tweak the section to make it clearer. Rd232 talk 01:04, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
I read it (I skimmed a little, admittedly, but I read it), and I'm exactly as unconvinced as I was before. Acting as if thinking about considering the idea of maybe, from time to time, discussing the possibility of blurring a face, is actively harming the project is moronic. You can quote guidelines at me all day; that isn't going to change. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 01:09, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Acting as if I said or implied that is, er, "moronic", to use your word. Blurring/cropping/etc may sometimes be acceptable, if you're really sure there aren't other identifying clues, or unaltered versions easily available elsewhere. Personally, it would need to be a really, really valuable image before I'd think it worth discussing seriously - otherwise, just delete it or don't use it. YMMV. Rd232 talk 01:20, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, what you said was, "We really have to get away from blurring (or related things like cropping) being a good option," and you specifically said that it was not "reasonable" to consider blurring, so I assumed you meant that. Since apparently you did not, I apologize for taking you at your word. Thanks for the link. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 23:49, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

@evanh2008: re your "how many of these images do we need" issue - see the current (but languishing) commons:Commons:Requests_for_comment/scope. Some injection of energy wouldn't hurt it. Rd232 talk 08:58, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

So what would work as a Commons policy change?

My remarks above seem to have been lost in a blizzard of prudes v perverts silliness and slipperyslopery. But the real concern is surely BLP, so why can't we be grownups and focus on that? The situation is that commons:Commons:Photographs of identifiable people is focussed on (a) protecting privacy (as in "images taken in a private place") and (b) respecting local consent laws (commons:Commons:Country specific consent requirements). This gives a fair handle on media that intrude on privacy or were taken in (or may have been taken in) countries with strong local consent laws (applying at least partially in public places). The image that sparked this thread was taken in public in the US, so neither (a) nor (b) applies (because US requires no subject consent for publication of images taken in public places).

Start from there. If you want this image to be deletable from Commons under COM:BLP, make suggestions on how COM:BLP can be changed to accommodate that objective. Nothing's going to change from talking here or raising hopeless deletion requests - policy needs to change, and that starts with discussion about how. Rd232 talk 00:25, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

In case of pictures of a sexual nature where the concern is that despite (implicit) consent, the person may regret having taken that picture later, blurring or otherwise modifying the picture is a solution. While in theory you can then still identify the person in the picture using other features, in these sorts of cases that's not going to be a problem. The nature of the problem here is one of instant recognizability of such pictures. So, if you get new job, a colleague who watches porn sites can see an old picture and then instantly recognizes you. What is not going to happen in practice is that every pornographic picture on the internet is going to be analyzed in detail to see if perhaps it could be you. Count Iblis (talk) 12:23, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
A noble, unprovable theory that is completely irrelevant. We'd link from the derivative version (pixellated) to the original (unpixellated) version (as required by policy and license) meaning she'd be trivially identifiable even if the non-technological factors (e.g. squinting) are ignored. The problem isn't that she's identifiable (if it were we would have no pictures of identifiable non-notable people) but that some people wish to hold images of people displaying body parts a mainstream western cultural attitude says shouldn't be shown in public to a different standard to images of people displaying body parts that other cultures say shouldn't be public but western mainstream cultural attitudes are fine with. I also note that you're classifying this image as "pornography" - a value judgement that an NPOV encyclopaedia does not make as it is inherrently POV. Thryduulf (talk) 13:52, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Count Iblis should be aware that pixelation of faces is specifically noted as an unsatisfactory solution in the Commons policy, sorry, guideline which deals with images of identifiable people. Hmm, you'd think such an important piece of guidance would be a policy, wouldn't you, but Commons, as always, remains hopelessly broken. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 17:09, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Well obviously it should be policy (I noted this a while ago (here) - but I have to say that a lack of wikilawyering about whether something is guideline or policy is a good thing about Commons. Rd232 talk 14:52, 30 April 2013 (UTC)

Issues with Flickr imports

  • one solution is to close down the "data mining" of Flickr type sources because the majority of issue come from them, thats not to say Flickr isnt a useful its just that with bot one transfer 100's of images an hour which makes the miners less selective in both usefulness and quality. Its rare for a Commons Photographer to be source of such images and when they are they have to obtain consent of the "model". Not every Admin on Commons is a problem many do try to be both conversant with copyright and the cultural needs but there is no single solution. Gnangarra 00:21, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
  • Flickr doesnt actually specify what version of the CC license is in use, currently images uploaded from there are tagged with version of cc...3.0 without further clarification sort from the source. Gnangarra 07:46, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Flickr doesnt actually specify what version of the CC license is in use - to my knowledge that's not true (though it's a bit hidden under "some rights reserved", linked to a CC license deed), and if it were, those images would not have a valid license, and would fail verification. Verification of licensing statements on Flickr imports is automated and fairly effective, AFAIK (the problem comes with judging whether the statements are true, which is a whole other issue). Anyway, let's not get side-tracked into copyright. Rd232 talk 08:48, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
So your solution is to give up trying to assemble a library of free-licensed images, and just let a private company be the custodian of these things, just to avoid the possibility of being at risk of being accused of being "unethical" for not stopping users from uploading legal images? This is entirely wrong, but if it were not, then WMF should recognize more generally that maintaining free content is a chore that will only be done by for-profit enterprises that have a profit motive to hire PR men and lawyers to defend their hoards. And, therefore, close up shop entirely. Wnt (talk) 03:29, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
the solution isnt to "give up" assembling a library of freely licensed images because that was never Commmons focus. Commons scope specifies freely-licensed educational media content, whats is ethical when "image/data mining" from sites like Flickr cause both harm and requires admins to spend time deleting bot uploads as out of scope even one of Commons crats has a page dedicated to deleting out of scope/policy images. As I said Flickr is a good source but individuals should be doing uploads one at a time reviewing, the licensing, whether the image is useful/educational and whether its of a reasonable quality, the same process a person goes through when uploading work they themselves have produced. Gnangarra 07:46, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Nothing stops users from contributing freely licenses images to commons themselves. What I propose is to stop taking people, some of whom lie to Flicker, at face value and perpetuating such licenses without first-person verification, nothing more. Commons is quite fastidious about not taking fair use images, but seems to be quite inclined to look the other way as long as a pseudonymous third party is willing to say "Yeah, I'm the author and this is OK, honest". Jclemens (talk) 04:15, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
This case had nothing to do with any doubt that the photo had been freely licensed, so any proposal in that direction has no more likelihood of removing it than removing any randomly chosen content item from Commons. Wnt (talk) 05:13, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
I was responding to Gnangarra's post, not the specific issue here. I have no opinion on the underlying photo, which is why I didn't express one. I am actually drawing more from an ArbCom case and some OTRS work I've done myself for the suggestion rather than anything directly related to this drama du jour. Jclemens (talk) 05:34, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
This was previously discussed at Commons:Requests for comment/images of identifiable people. The BLP and COM:PEOPLE policies need to be harmonized to prevent Flickr images from being used unless consent is available, particularly if the image is of a sexual or embarrassing nature. Don't hold your breath waiting for consensus, as only the Foundation could introduce this as policy.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 05:59, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
There's nothing to stop English Wikipedia declaring, for example, that Flickr-sourced images where WP:BLP issues are raised regarding the image need some evidence of subject consent for publication. Wording might be a pain to nail down, but the principle is clear enough and sensible enough. Rd232 talk 08:42, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
That's pretty much the main problem: As long as there is someone (A random Flickr account, a redlinked throaway-account) saying "I'm the author, trust me." the images will be accepted, and the burden of proof will be on those wanting to delete the images. And nothing but 99% certainty that the images are indeed problematic will get them deleted. It's no wonder that 85% of all current porn images on Commons were uploaded by throwaway accounts with <15 edits in total. --Conti| 11:06, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Is that a real statistic, or did you just pull it out of... thin air? -mattbuck (Talk) 11:19, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Flickr is too much of an online rummage sale to be able to say for sure that a person wanted a photograph to be uploaded, or that the uploader is the copyright holder. This has been stated *many* times before in deletion debates on Commons, but there is still a tendency to ignore this. For images with WP:BLP issues, Flickr should not be the go-to source.--♦IanMacM♦ (talk to me) 11:34, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
It's my experience from going through various porn categories that practically all of the images I find are from redlinked throwaway accounts, or from Flickr accounts (which have more likely than not been deleted by now). So I should probably have included Flickr in that number. It should be easy to get some real numbers for this. --Conti| 12:41, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
This and similar imaes are from fully public settings where photography is permitted without the subject's permission as a matter of policy, which is why the sourcing from Flickr doesn't matter. Wnt (talk) 12:45, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
If this was a response to me: What image are you talking about? --Conti| 12:49, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
The one that started this thread, or for that matter, any Flickr-originated image from the category mentioned by Dan Murphy below. Wnt (talk) 12:59, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
A tit flashing image on flickr is NOT made visible to non-logged users that have stated that they want to view such images. Porn images are not made available to under 18s. Commons scrapping of the images makes them indexable by search engines. I've been around flickr long enough to know. That there is no guarantee that any image on flickr is the work of the account uploader, nor that the uploader has made a conscious decision to make that specific image CC-BY-SA. Additionally the denizens of Commons also know from the number of complaints about scrapped flickr images that the flickr uploaders don't understand what CC-BY-SA means. John lilburne (talk) 13:27, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
CC-by-SA refers to the rights of the person taking the picture, not the subject, and my guess is that these have been stared at very hard already for copyright trouble. Flickr's corporate policy is apparently a concession to the kind of people who have demanded image-filtering here, but some people just don't believe in that nonsense. The extra click and the imaginary age limit is just pointless ritual. Wnt (talk) 14:14, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
My guess is that your guess is very, very wrong. I have found countless copyright violations (some quite blatant) on Flickr, and I have found lots of those making their way to commons. The number of not so obvious copyright violations on Flickr (the kind you cannot find out with 10 seconds of google image search) should be way higher. And that doesn't even include people publishing their image under a CC license without knowing what that actually means. --Conti| 14:56, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Your guess would be right. I've seen countless accounts full of images which are put into sets labelled FROM THE WEB, or where the profile of the account says "I don't own a camera I just collect images I like.", many of those accounts also add a CC-BY license becuase all their images are "Public domain" (snagged from the web they mean). Mostly those accounts don't last long before flickr deletes them. Other accounts where the uploader changes the license to CC-BY then a week later it becomes ARR, then the images are made private, then they are back to ARR. John lilburne (talk) 15:30, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
  • How and when exactly did Flickr come to be considered a good source for Commons images? As far as I can tell, there would be nothing to stop me from registering a Flickr account, uploading a few thousand images copyrighted in all jurisdictions, and "licensing" them under a CC 3.0. It's a resource over which we have no oversight and no authority. There is (again, as far as I can tell) no way to "fact check" the idea that these licenses are even legitimate. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 17:30, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
    • Well, thinking about it, at least part of it is that there are many institutions (museums, galleries, archives etc) uploading to Flickr, and those are often very useful sources of indisputably educational images. Limiting Flickr imports to institutional Flickr accounts would be one way of stemming the tide of stuff that's mediocre and/or dubiously licensed and/or of dubious educational value that's increasingly sucked in from there. But somehow I don't think Commons would agree to that. Rd232 talk 20:53, 1 May 2013 (UTC)

Going through the lovingly curated commons category Female Breast Flashing 60 out of 67 images (90%) are from flickr, 1 is scraped from Salon (of a picture associated with the Abu Ghraib torture and abuse scandal -- the only picture with the face blurred) and six come either from the porn blog "lukeisback" or the porn website "reviewerhell" (which appears to be mostly pictures that the owner, who goes by "dirtybob," has scraped from other commercial sites.Dan Murphy (talk) 11:54, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Gendergap writ large?

I find it fascinating, in a painful way, to read this discussion about whether we have the ethical right to disseminate images of women's breasts when we don't have consent from them, look at the usernames, and realize that there appears to have been a grand total of two comments to the discussion by anyone female (hi, Béria!) - and that's here, on the Commons discussion, and on the BLPN discussion. Although I'll admit that I don't know everyone here personally, so I couldn't swear there's been only one female commenter, I think the male-editor domination of this conversation is yet another example of how our remarkable gender gap weakens our ability to have conversations in which all viewpoints and life experience types are represented. Speaking personally, for example, knowing (because I'm an American female, and we're socialized to be aware of things like this in ways our male counterparts aren't) how damaging the release or identification of sexual images of a woman who lives a "private citizen" life can be to her reputation and livelihood, I'm astounded to see anyone arguing that we have an inalienable right to disseminate images of the breasts of a woman who signed no release and who was almost certainly too drunk to consent to a legal contract, anyway. It seems perfectly clear to me that this issue should be covered by BLP ("[...]the possibility of harm to living subjects must always be considered when exercising editorial judgment."); I wonder how this conversation would be going if it were populated by a more natural distribution of genders. It certainly possible it would still be leading to "too bad for the image subject, she can't sue us so what's the problem?" - women are as able to have different perspectives and disagree among themselves as any other group - but it's also possible that women's perspectives on this issue would inform the discussion in ways that would enhance the our approach to these matters. A fluffernutter is a sandwich! (talk) 15:28, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Someone uploaded a nude pic of me to Wikicommons from my flickr account. Raquel Baranow (talk) 15:37, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
OK - but that's just a statement of fact. What is your point? Rd232 talk 18:30, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
That i support creative commons uploads of nudest exhibition to wikimedia commons, not ashamed. Jesus said: When you unclothe yourselves and are not ashamed, and take your garments and lay them beneath your feet like the little children (and) trample on them, then [you will see] the Son of the Living One, and you will not be afraid. Raquel Baranow (talk) 19:21, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
It is valuable to hear your perspective, Raquel Baranow, but do you think most people share your attitude? Delicious carbuncle (talk) 20:47, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Do you have to have majority support to provide images for the WMF projects? The Gospel of Thomas is not part of certain canons but certainly some people hold it in high esteem, and what more can you reasonably ask of a religion? Wnt (talk) 18:26, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Fair enough - a wider variety of perspectives would be helpful; there is a sort systemic bias here, notably towards Western, male, youngish views. And the views of readers don't figure at all (in theory, reader surveys could be done on key issues, instead of depending solely on editor discussions). Rd232 talk 15:41, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Have we ever canvassed the views of the readers? Have any Wikipedias? --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 15:45, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
WP:CANVASssing is probably a term to be avoided here ;) Well yes and no. There was m:Research:Wikipedia Readership Survey 2011 but that didn't cover the kind of questions I have in mind about future directions of Wikipedia. Well, m:Research:Wikipedia_Readership_Survey_2011/Results#Search.2C_translation_tools_on_top_of_agenda_for_readers covers some of it... But being conducted by the WMF, there was a particular focus to it. A reader survey done by an individual Wikipedia could do it from a different perspective; and just developing a set of questions to ask readers could be a very interesting exercise. Rd232 talk 18:29, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Mmm. I wouldn't mind putting this to our readership. Maybe it's time for another reader survey. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 10:07, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
There. Let's see what happens. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 15:45, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
The lack of female opinions probably has more to do with the lack of female participants than anything else. The latest blog post on Wikipediocracy is somewhat enlightening about the ol' boyz network on commons. --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 23:29, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
You mean the one which pretty much accuses me of being a paedophile (again)? -mattbuck (Talk) 01:56, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
You know perfectly well no one accused you of that. They made a reasonable (at least on the surface) argument that you and other Commons admin have not behaved responsibly with regard to sexual images of minors posted to Commons, often described as child pornography. Your response here, frankly, reinforces the argument. Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 12:07, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
Like HW said. Otherwise the point is that if someone doesn't want their image being used, and says so somewhere, they risk the Streisand effect because rather than just quietly deleting, it ends up being part of a big public debate. We should worry about the ethics of using an image just as much as whether it's "legal", rather than subjecting subjects to the commons peanut gallery. --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 12:44, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
Most slopes in life are not slippery. And most appeals to slippery slopes are red herrings, designed to disguise the actual issue at hand (e.g., "If they take away our framitzi, eventually they'll take away our children!" when actually the person just wants to keep her framitzi, which may be fine but should be argued on its own merits). In fact most slopes are stairs with clear stopping points where the wisdom of taking the next step is subject to debate. And especially here where people will argue about anything and everything. Some people here might be all like "Well, I think such-and-such is a terrible idea, but we did implement thus-and-so, and this is the logical next step, so I guess we have to do it". But not many. So don't worry about it. And if you're not really worried about it but are just using rhetorical tactics, you should probably stop doing that.
And getting back to your original post, the one that began "I think we need to remember the daughters who aren't in the picture also. If one of them loses control over a topless cellphone photo, how humiliated will they feel? I think they will feel less humiliated if we don't suppress the "background noise" of photos like this on the Internet than if we do. Normality is a competition..." well a couple points First of all, yes it is a competition, but we're not here to move the bar of normalcy, and I came to make an encyclopedia not to sign on to your or anyone else's libertine crusade. We had a sexual revolution and sex won, so let's not run it into the ground for crying out loud. Stop trying to hijack this encyclopedia for your purposes. Second of all, and I'm trying to think of a nice way to say this, ah I think your understanding of these issues and how most women feel about this sort of thing is a tad jejune. I understand why you're worried about slippery slopes: ("This is true no matter whether society's threshold is an exposed breast, an unveiled face, or a flash of ankle...") no it ain't, but I get where you're coming from: you're not able to distinguish between these things. So of course you don't expect others to. But we can. Really. Trust me on this. Herostratus (talk) 16:32, 30 April 2013 (UTC)
If we're not here to move the bar of normalcy, then let's leave it right where our contributors set it with their uploads. Those scenes are out there; the purpose of Commons' photos of Mardi Gras should be to document the event just as it is. As for unveiled faces, that's not purely hypothetical - I can indeed imagine that if Iraq had good internet coverage that we would have women coming to us asking for us to remove pictures of them walking about unveiled from the good old days of Saddam Hussein. (see Women's rights in Iraq for further information - it's not actually one of Wikipedia's shortest articles) As with the topless photos, I can picture indulging deletion requests from the subjects one by one as a courtesy, but imagine what happens if these moralists come back and tell us that every photo of an unveiled woman from Saddam times has to go, because they are probably embarrassed by them now. We would be letting the modern fanatics rewrite history, so that anyone looking up topics about Iraq would see them all illustrated with dutifully veiled women from the 1980s. And Iraqi women don't really have to have Internet access for the moralists to start up that crusade - they could do it right now, if that were the prejudice they wanted to advance. Wnt (talk) 19:16, 30 April 2013 (UTC)

Our position versus public policy

While people here wring their hands about whether it is wrong to allow people to upload street scenes containing images of breast flashing by people as long as it is in public, the subject is not identified by name, and the subject has not come to us specifically requesting removal, please consider what the public policy is: Women who show their breasts at Mardi Gras are thrown in jail when the police see them. [30] They end up with criminal records. I have even seen a few non-reliable sources online claiming that women have ended up on the sex offenders registry over this! [31] Based on [32] in San Francisco it is at least plausible this could happen. Now when we put our gentle, educationally motivated policy of not censoring our encyclopedia side by side against their unjust, vindictive, judgmental and deliberate attempt to permanently stigmatize women for having "lady parts", who do you think is the bigger problem? Yet - that is the actual law of the land. Are you going to tell me that in order to be a good Wikipedian you have to condemn New Orleans for doing this? Wnt (talk) 16:26, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

Typically, you have missed the point entirely and are now droning on about some imagined scenario of political repression. The concern here is for the people pictured in images, especially those where there is reason to believe that they may cause embarrassment. If people consent to be being photographed and consent to those images being used indiscriminately, I don't think anyone here is trying to prevent their upload to Commons. The question is not about people voluntarily exposing themselves, it is about the use of images of that act and consent for that use. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 17:02, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
  • If it's true that showing one's breasts at Mardi Gras is illegal, then we've transcended the original issue of ethics. You're saying we're/Commons is hosting photographs of people doing things that could get them arrested, without their consent. We oversight, not just delete, accusations of people committing crimes if the accusations are textual; why would we not do the same to a photo that could have been photoshopped or otherwise manipulated to show a woman committing a crime she didn't commit? The presumption when it comes to allegations of criminal activity should always be that we don't publish it unless it's notable and eminently well-sourced. A fluffernutter is a sandwich! (talk) 17:10, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Gee, I thought the accusations were oversighted because they might not be true. Are you saying that it is every Wikipedian's duty to engage in deliberate "Spoliation of evidence" if not obstruction of justice? I appreciate the sentiment but not when it is so unlikely to work and so much in conflict with the simple mission of just getting on with documenting what Mardi Gras looks like, warts, breasts, and all. Wnt (talk) 17:26, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
No, I'm saying that if an unsupported accusation is made, we oversight it, because we are proactive in protecting BLP subjects from real-world harm. If we were talking about textual matters, "I dunno, some guy on Flickr said so, and he wouldn't lie, would he?" wouldn't be considered adequate sourcing for something like "Jane Doe flashes people in public and is probably on the sex offender registry." So if it is true that what the person is doing in a photo is a crime, I would expect similarly strong support for that "accusation", as well as a justification for why Jane Doe's alleged crimes are notable enough to be the subject of our coverage. Off the top of my head, that strong support could be, say, the photo being published in a reliable source, or Jane Doe writing to OTRS to release her personality rights as the subject of the image - but not "it got scraped from some bloggy, non-editorially-controlled place on the internet, so we took that place at its word." A fluffernutter is a sandwich! (talk) 17:39, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
If the photo is not sufficient to show a crime was committed, then it is not an accusation of one either. It is what it is. You might argue that if it has a title or content that suggests she is doing something illegal then the en.BLP would push for that to be changed (not the image), and that is just barely plausible, but it doesn't apply to Commons. Wnt (talk) 17:45, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
A statement "X has committed a crime" isn't sufficient to show a crime was committed. But it's certainly an accusation of one. Ken Arromdee (talk) 19:20, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
I don't often say this, but I believe the Fluffernutter is right. If there are BLP concerns, those almost certainly apply to anyone who is personally identifiable. This doesn't make photos of such acts the problem, exactly, but it does mean that any photo that shows (or, as we damn well ought to make clear purports to show) anyone doing something illegal a problem if the individual remains identifiable. If I have access to a copy of Photoshop and a photograph of some random individual I happen not to like, there's absolutely nothing stopping me from sticking their face into a file such as (to pick a random example) File:Jeffrey-dahmer.jpg, along with a statement that they are some kind of horrendous criminal, perhaps sourced to some unsupported claims in a Flickr photo description.
So where exactly do we draw the line? How illegal is too illegal for Commons? Maybe rape could use a few illustrative, "educational" photographs, and I'm certain there is a sick individual somewhere in the world who would be willing to provide them. (I was going to make an argument involving photos of public urination, but I now see that the Foundation is hosting those, too. Christ...)
And just to make this clear, I am not making a "slippery slope" argument. I am questioning how we would apply what seems to be a currently standing open-door policy to photos of identifiable individuals engaged in illegal activity, not baselessly speculating on how someone in the future might decide to blur out the Pepperidge Farm logo. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 17:46, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Well, we have photos like File:AG-10B.JPG of the sexual sort of abuse by Lynndie England. The suggestion that Commons not cover any photo of any illegal activity is exactly the reason why I don't want to fall down this slope. Our coverage of FEMEN is one of the specific things I want to preserve, and often women have been arrested at those protests. I want us to cover 4/20 legalization rallies, soccer riots, the Bosnian civil war, all manner of public disturbance, small or large, the harmless and especially the reprehensible, just as it happens. Wnt (talk) 18:12, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Well, I want us to cover those things too, and the Abu Ghraib picture you linked to is a great example of what is not legally problematic for us to include. It is a photograph of an individual engaging in illegal activity, of which she was convicted, against victims who are not personally identifiable (they literally have bags over their heads, and you're still concerned about blurring?). What I don't want us to cover is unverifiable accusations of criminal activity against specific private individuals, which all photos of illegal actions anywhere should be assumed to be. You bringing up Abu Ghraib is only making my point for me. If a high-profile female celebrity went to Mardi Gras and flashed her breasts, and someone happened to snap a free photo of the event, we might have a decent rationale for specifically making the individual's identity clear, particularly if third-party sources covered the event as factual (and not alleged). What you don't realize is that I am making an education-based argument as much as you are; I just fail to see how being able to individually identify those exposing themselves in public fulfills a legitimate educational need.
"The suggestion that Commons not cover any photo of any illegal activity is exactly the reason why I don't want to fall down this slope." — Yet again, you're seeing things that aren't there. No one has suggested that "Commons not cover any photo of any illegal activity." I have said exactly the opposite multiple times. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 18:40, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
I actually hadn't been expecting that you'd object less to the inclusion of a named principal than an unnamed principal, but in any case the FEMEN photos very likely have some people in them who are unindicted or unconvicted - many of those cases are taking some time to go through various courts. The girl Putin complimented ... if she is never prosecuted, can we never include her photo? I would say a photo is just a photo. It's not an accusation. It doesn't pretend to be anything other than what it is. The person taking the photo isn't asserting that so-and-so broke a law, only that this is what you would have seen if you were walking around New Orleans that day. Wikipedia is supposed to be about sharing our knowledge of the world, and that's what this is. Wnt (talk) 18:55, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
I'm astounded that intelligent people, or at least those that can fasten their shoes, are find it so difficult to discriminate between abuse of power and staged political protest on the one hand, and a drunken party goer on the other hand. Its almost as if they believe that all three instances are equivalent. Is it the bare flesh that has you so confused? John lilburne (talk) 20:10, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
The inclusion or not of a name is next to inconsequential (how many of the files in questions have names attached, anyway? Not many, from what I've seen). The face alone is enough to make them identifiable for all practical (and, perhaps not coincidentally, all legal) purposes. My point is that the inclusion of any information (be it pictorial, textual, or whatever) that identifies an individual in a potentially compromising position is an action on our part that needs to have a decent justification. It should not be assumed that we include such info in all cases where we don't have a specific reason not to, just because we can. Acting as if all nudity is just as educational, just as worthy of inclusion in Commons, and just as demanding of personal identification in all instances without qualification is ridiculous. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:16, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
And since you didn't directly address it above, Wnt (which, of course, you were not under any obligation to do), I am curious as to what you think should be done when someone decides to expand our coverage of rape on Commons. Would you construe such photos as educational and opt to keep them? Would the identifiability (word?) of either party in the photo make a difference in your decision? Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:45, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
The vast majority of such photos would be excluded by the existing COM:IDENT policy. The remaining cases would likely be the focus of a broader societal discussion which would, in regard to other outlets, make it clearer what the legal issues would be. Wnt (talk) 23:37, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
So — just trying to clarify here — you can foresee a scenario in which you wouldn't have a problem with photographs of a rape being hosted by Commons? Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 23:56, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
I started with such a scenario, namely the photos of abuse of detainees in U.S. custody. I don't know whether the things done with them, naked human pyramids, dogs licking peanut butter, or being "forced to simulate masturbation", would count as "rape" or "involuntary deviate sexual intercourse" in a civilian court; England wasn't sentenced to precisely that in the military trial. But one can imagine other conflicts and circumstances in which similar official acts of what may fairly be called rape would be valid educational material for Commons. Wnt (talk) 00:07, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
Well, again, I think the proper criterion to use is whether the particular incident photographed is itself noteworthy enough to warrant coverage at Commons. The Abu Ghraib images serve a purpose to illustrate a widely covered event, but if the images weren't of any particularly notable incident, we couldn't identify when or where they were taken, or provide a rationale for using them to illustrate a given topic, they should not be hosted at our servers. In the scenario I proposed, which was essentially someone with the means and motive "donating" some photographs of what just might be the most reprehensible form of original research imaginable, I think any decent human being should be filled with moral outrage at the idea that anyone at Commons would even consider not immediately oversighting such images. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 01:05, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
I think the scenario you're considering may be more specific than the one I've been discussing. If you are considering the very specific case where a rapist rapes someone "in public", videotapes it, and then uploads the image himself to Commons, then yes, that is a unique problem deserving of a unique solution. I should note that personally, I would favor that if there is an interim period of reform after the abolition of obscenity law but before the abolition of copyright, that one of the many legal consequences of rape should be an automatic copyright transfer at the time of the rape of all images a rapist has or will make of the victim to the victim, which I should note would void any subsequently made releases to public domain as he was not the copyright holder. It may be possible without such reform to construct somewhat similar arguments from various other privacy and personality rights, which is the "broader societal discussion" I mentioned above. Nonetheless, the Abu Ghraib images would violate this principle, and even so I think it would be wrong to remove them, which admittedly is an inconsistency I haven't worked out in my mind - as we get to very narrow categories of extremely unlikely events, there are just things we haven't thought over yet. But my original point holds: no, Commons should not agree to a blanket policy against all images of rape, broadly construed, because there will be instances in which there are essentially public rapes being done as a matter of war or government policy which need to be made known and understood fully. Wnt (talk) 14:52, 3 May 2013 (UTC)

Wnt's ability to sidetrack a discussion whilst sincerely trying to contribute to it is probably unparalleled. Wnt, sorry, but based on your past form, the best contribution you can make to discussions like this is to leave them well alone. Rd232 talk 18:21, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

The "sidetracks" here are simply attempts to consider general principle. Do we do this first, when we reject a slippery slope, or afterward, when people use any one wrong decision as carte blanche to cut out "anything like it"? I prefer first. Wnt (talk) 22:09, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Mmm, no. "Slippery slope" arguments are almost always half-baked; yours was nothing short of mythical. Feel free to come back if and when you have an argument that doesn't hinge on a complete misunderstanding of how and why other media censor certain things. Stop pretending you said something that made any sense. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 17:28, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Fortunately Commons has rejected your point of view, so I'm not the one who needs to prove something here. But I do weary of the namecalling. Wnt (talk) 18:16, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
"Half-baked" isn't a name. I attacked your argument, not you. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 18:27, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Let's be clearer then. Every time your side has asked me a question I've answered. But with epithets like "half-baked", I still honestly don't know whether you or anyone agreeing with you would favor removing images of unveiled women from Iraq during the Saddam Hussein era or not. If your answer for that is different from your answer about Mardi Gras flashing I'd like to hear what the difference is. Wnt (talk) 18:45, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
Good question. I would say one key difference is that, taking a hypothetical high-profile protest event where women went unveiled, a picture of the event would have a much greater educational value than a picture of a random woman at Mardi Gras. The cultural contexts are obviously different, and one has a far greater cultural and societal meaning than the other (a bit like the difference between grilling a pork chop in an American suburb on July 4, and grilling one in Riyadh during Ramadan). The event in Iraq itself can probably be verified by consulting a reliable source, something which is not true for a given instance of flashing at Mardi Gras; for the Iraqi event, coverage by third-party sources establishes both the fact that the event happened, and that it is significant enough to warrant coverage. I'm no expert on Iraqi law, but I also assume that they could no longer be prosecuted for such an action, which would render any legal argument moot. If it is determined that there are outstanding BLP or legal problems, the image of the Iraqi event should ideally be taken from a reputable publication under fair use law for historic and educational value, reducing to near zero the possibility that any malicious modifications have been made.
Regarding 4-20 rallies and the like, I think it's a good idea to use images of legal activity, where they are available, rather than images that could land people in jail. There were a number of events in Colorado several months ago to celebrate the recent legalisation of cannabis in that state. Qualitatively, these pictures are not very different from events in other places and times, but out of courtesy and a respect for living persons, we can do our best to not get people arrested. The encyclopedia is as illustrated as it needs to be, and no one goes to prison. Everyone is (or should be) happy. As an aside, I was surprised to read that the situation for women in Iraq has allegedly worsened since 2003, as I coincidentally heard a report on NPR earlier this week where several experts said exactly the opposite. That's neither here nor there, of course. And to clarify, my "half-baked" comment was in reference to the advertising thing, not the Iraq question. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 21:09, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
I don't get it. I swear I remember once people would argue with me that I had some kind of ethical duty to help enforce the law. I think copyright fanatics are like that. And then sometimes I run into people who think I have an ethical duty to help defy the law. Can't I just sit happily on top of a hoard of donated content without feeling the slightest obligation to do anything in regard to the law except not get in trouble with it myself? Actually, for the Iraq example I wasn't thinking of a deliberate protest today, but of (for example) a photo from an earlier news article or other less formal presentation in which an unveiled woman might have been interviewed in 2003 as an example of a "more progressive element" in Iraq. Wnt (talk) 22:51, 1 May 2013 (UTC)
"Can't I just sit happily on top of a hoard of donated content without feeling the slightest obligation to do anything in regard to the law except not get in trouble with it myself?" — Assuming this is a legitimate question (and not some kind of weird hypothetical facetious statement that I can't decipher), the answer is "no." There are all kinds of legal responsibilities that come along with making content available to the public, not the least of which is ensuring that defamation is not committed and that the material in question actually has been donated. Since we apparently have absolutely no safeguards in place to ensure either of those things, it would appear that the WMF has decided that non-expert volunteers will have to handle these questions themselves, one file at a time. I also happen to think that human beings have certain moral obligations, though I realise I'll often be in the minority on that. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:21, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
I didn't suggest avoiding genuine legal responsibilities, but most of the people on your side stopped claiming these were a factor in the first few pages of the discussion. Obviously if WMF lawyers had any fact-based statements to offer in this regard we would have a new policy in minutes. Wnt (talk) 00:57, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
To give another comparison: just below we are told that, as a legal necessity far above policy, the WMF will directly notify authorities if an underage girl uploads various sorts of explicit photos of herself to Commons so that, at their discretion, she can be charged with making child pornography of herself. It seems like the winds of "ethics" blow in all directions. Wnt (talk) 15:01, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Wnt, how are we to know if your hypothetical underage girl uploaded those images to Commons herself? Perhaps they were taken by someone else, circulated among her peers, and then uploaded to Commons in order to harass the subject? Delicious carbuncle (talk) 15:43, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
We don't. I'm not disputing that policy because (a) I can't and (b) I really don't want the orcs making off with the WMF servers in a flatbed truck. My point is that it is another very similar situation where the societal ethics are in exact opposition to the notion proposed above that we have to protect subjects from prosecution, even exceedingly unlikely prosecution. True, if I were King of the World I would legalize every binary number from 1 to infinity and authorize measured employment/unemployment subsidies for those who have trouble due to online harassment (or out of work after the collapse of the $4 billion a year industry of kidnapping kids and photographing them for child porn to sell online), but I'm not, now am I. Wnt (talk) 18:55, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
Well, at least this last comment is fully baked. But keep talking, please. You're helping me immensely here. Kids, this is why you shouldn't do drugs. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 22:34, 2 May 2013 (UTC)
What, they might actually believe that "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press" with no bogus "but it doesn't really MEAN that..." tacked on at the end of the sentence? Wnt (talk) 00:10, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
Do I actually need to tell you that Wikipedia is not Congress? Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:13, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, I thought you were belittling me for my utopian statement of political opinion. Was your gibe based only on my comment that I can't change WMF policy, or that I don't want WMF closed down? Wnt (talk) 00:27, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
My "gibe," as you put it, was in reference to the fact that I have absolutely no idea what point you're trying to get across with your posts. "Legalizing binary numbers," — I guess that's a fine goal to have in mind, but I don't see what relevance it has to the discussion here. Child porn is illegal here, despite whatever "utopian" ideals you may have in mind, and "employment subsidies"... I don't even know what this means. I assume you have a coherent point somewhere, but I'm afraid I'm having trouble finding it. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 00:42, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
What is a computer file? Wnt (talk) 01:07, 3 May 2013 (UTC)
I get it. I'm supposed to say "a series of binary digits representing information," or something similar, and then we can get into a disussion of how files shouldn't be illegal. Problem is, I'm not going to play along. Go try it on someone else; maybe you'll convince them. Evanh2008 (talk|contribs) 01:12, 3 May 2013 (UTC)

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