User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 178

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A person's actions on Wikipedia affect the legitimacy of their published works?

In a discussion on this page there seemed to be a comment that suggested that someone's actions regarding spamming their name affected the legitimacy of an article that person wrote in a respected journal. So, my broad question is- if someone who is famous, has published books, articles, etc and then comes to Wikipedia and breaks whatever !rules we may have (pick your favorite), does that create a mark that we should take into consideration regarding their legitimacy? It seems there are some who feel that way. A fictional extreme example- Noam Chomsky comes to Wikipedia and starts an edit war at Ural-Altaic languages by insisting on inserting Beevis and Butthead episodes as references.Camelbinky (talk) 16:23, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

Both your example and your statement of the issue are badly slanted and have little to do with the actual case you noticed above. In the case we were actually dealing with, the "Igor Janev spammer" aka Operahome (talk · contribs) (I'm not making a judgment of whether the spammer really is Janev himself, or merely somebody very close to him – i.e. close enough to routinely be able to make snapshots of him sitting on his balcony with his dog): (a) Janev isn't "famous". For all we know, he is probably a decent academic, moderately successful in his field, who has a job at a research institution and has published some (few) journal articles and (more) monographs published by his own institution, as academics are wont to do, but he isn't anything more than that. (b) Nobody said the specific article isn't technically a reliable source. It's a short opinion piece in a "notes and comments" section of an academic journal, has been cited a few times by other authors, and presents a standard account of the legal position of the Macedonian government. The Janev spammer tried very hard to make it appear on Wikipedia that that legal position actually originated with him and that all the Macedonian politicians who voiced similar arguments in their public dealings with the UN were implicitly acknowledging his academic authority, but we have absolutely no evidence to that effect. (c) Of course we could quote that piece, if we needed it, i.e. if there was a reason to describe Janev's opinion in one of our articles. So far, however, there hasn't been any such need. (d) As long as we are dealing merely with sourcing trivial historical facts that happen to be mentioned in that article but are equally mentioned in any number of other sources, it is our editorial discretion whether we use his article or not. (e) Given the obvious on-wiki misbehavior, I personally find it entirely justified to systematically prefer to not use this source, to deny him the reward for his spamming. Fut.Perf. 17:43, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
So far as I can tell, what is at issue is whether the edits of one person who seems to have a connection to another person is using a published work as evidence of something that it isn't necessary really unambiguous evidence for, specifically, that the published comment was the first such comment of that type, published or not published, from anyone. Is that right? John Carter (talk) 20:17, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
That was one of the many problems with the aborted Draft:Igor Janev, yes, and it seems to be part of the explanation of why some good-faith editors on this page have been misled into believing Janev more prominent than he really is, apparently. It wasn't the issue with the specific use of the source that Neotarf was suggesting somewhere above though, which would in itself have been harmless. Fut.Perf. 21:15, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
Why is everyone talking about a specific case and Igor Janev?! Seriously, when I said I was talking about if an editor is someone who has written reliable sources, does his/her actions on Wikipedia affect how we view his/her papers, I really meant it as a generic question. That is why I gave an extreme example. Shut up about Igor Janev. I understand if you don't want to answer the question, but hijacking it to rehash some thing totally different is simply unneeded.Camelbinky (talk) 22:55, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
Of course their wikipedia action do not change anything. The reason reliably sources sources are reliable is because they have been vetted and approved by experts. Regardless of what the author of a reliable source otherwise says or does at wikipedia or elsewhere that is not changed. (unless the publication is retracted)User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 23:11, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
Or if the author in question, possibly the editor of a second-tier or lower journal, crammed one of his own really, um, interesting, pieces in his journal during his last days or something. This would be particularly true if the individual were to almost immediately retire and or perhaps die of some long-term terminal problem. In such instances, I imagine the work in question might be generally treated with benign neglect by most others thereafter. I can imagine a few, if very few, cases where that might happen, although I also think that the work in question would be given enough polite disagreement shortly thereafter by someone that the perhaps lesser reliability would be fairly easy to determine. John Carter (talk) 23:33, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
That comment clarifies the somewhat dubious nature of "legitimacy" in the first post. If Carl Sagan or Patrick Moore (who are dead and obviously not in a position to do anything here, unless we have lots of things wrong in a big way) starts drooling on the talk page of some model about her chest, would we discount their input on their topics of expertise? I guess I would think that in such cases we might prefer them to use language like "I, whoever, as a person recognized as being very knowledgeable on this topic, say, based on my knowledge, whatever it is," I think we would probably accept that. There might be some legitimate questions about his judgment if the comments are on topics of marginal expertise and/or, unfortunately, if the earlier comments indicate that the person might not be taking all their pills. That isn't intended as an insult - lots of high achievers have some sort of personal aberration of some kind, in addition to being high achievers. John Carter (talk) 23:03, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
It would be WP:OR for us to evaluate material based on behavior displayed on Wikipedia. There are other means of evaluating material, but none that involve Wikipedia itself. Bus stop (talk) 23:45, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia as a part of the controversy

I'm not even going to try to hide what I'm talking about. There has recently been talk that, the longer the GamerGate page stays on Wikipedia, the more close Wikipedia gets to becoming a part of/source for the controversy. Has such a thing happened in the past, where Wikipedia gets dragged into a major controversy/heated issue/shitstorm? If not, do you have any idea on what might be done in future things with a heavily on-internet nature? --DSA510 Pls No H8 03:49, 19 November 2014 (UTC)

This is not a "major controversy". Most people haven't even heard of it. All I see is a lot of WP:SOAP. RGloucester 03:56, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
Something about images of Muhammad, perhaps. Or the FBI-seal. Gråbergs Gråa Sång (talk) 06:18, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes. See List of Wikipedia controversies for a partial list. However, I don't see the existance of a GamerGate article as being a major controversy. Certainly it has only had limited coverage so far. - Bilby (talk) 06:44, 19 November 2014 (UTC)
Isn't our GamerGate article longer than our WaterGate article (I believe I read that in the news)? The problem isn't covering the controversy, it's that WP has taken a side and editors have taken sides while still trying to claim their side is NPOV. The opening sentence is the first clue as it's never written that way by mainstream outlets that are covering the controversy and not a part of it. --DHeyward (talk) 20:54, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
I'd personally be interested to hear how you'd rewrite that first sentence, along with a full explanation of how mainstream outlets do write it and how your proposed version is a better fit to reliable sources.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:11, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
Here's an ABC news Opinion piece: For some, GamerGate is about the "ethics of gaming journalism," about the alleged collusion between video game developers and video game journalists, and about the response of gaming journalists and websites to such accusations. For others, GamerGate is about the misogynistic culture of video games, a culture that exists both in the sexist portrayal of women in video games and in the violent threats that have been made against women who have criticized this culture.[1]. I think that is fair opening sentence that doesn't diminish or relegate any particular view (I don't have a preference for which is listed first as long as it doesn't marginalize anyone) - and I would put it as past tense (not that my view means much). Game journalism sources are more difficult to find as they are reluctant to critically cover themselves (that's not unique, mainstream media does the same thing when they are part of the story). GamerGate is not one single thing and there are plenty of "outside of gaming" sources that place it as left vs. right, male vs. female, libertarian vs. social progressives, millenial vs. genx. Our first sentence (the last time I read it) was a definitive "GamerGate is" statement which if it were so clear cut it would have ended in about a week - gamers haven't been known to really care about portrayals of women in games and it's not like "Depression Quest" was about to put "Grand Theft Auto" out of business. Here's the "Reason" piece that mentions Wikipedia.[2]. Here's a Vox piece by Ezra Klein on the real reason I think it exploded and continues [3]. I think it stays alive because it provides a platform for various elements to keep talking about their own agendas which isn't even related much to games anymore but #GamerGate is a much more hip way to attract attention. Whether it's a feminist platform or whether it's a "journalists are leftists" platform, both are keeping the hashtag alive so they aren't drowned into irrelevancy. Gamers, historically, could care less about either and are caught in the middle. That case is made in mainstream media but is drowned in the voices that are platforming. Two other interesting pieces by Cathy Young [4][5] --DHeyward (talk) 22:01, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
P.S. The pinnacle interpretation of the Blizzard CEO condemning harassment as coming down hard on GamerGate was followed by Then, at that same convention, Blizzard also announced a new game called Overwatch. One of the main characters in the team shooter game is named Widowmaker. She's a well-endowed assassin in a revealing, cleavage-emphasizing catsuit with a sexy French accent (and, of course, heels). Is this a problem? Only if you accept the false consumer choice that the entire industry can appeal to either the id of a male gamer audience or the progressive demands of feminists, but somehow not both.[6] --DHeyward (talk) 22:26, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
That opinion article you cite above is a beautiful example of cherry-picking sentences while ignoring the context, because that opinion article goes on to completely reject GamerGate's claims to be about "ethics in journalism" and, in fact, argues that Thus, if the "ethics in gaming journalism" side of GamerGate wants objectivity in game reporting, then it is only through the efforts of the feminist side of debate that we have seen any real strides taken in that direction. In other words, Anita Sarkeesian and those who are similarly "printing what someone else does not want printed" about games, are not the enemy of "ethics in gaming journalism" - they are the best representatives of it. That is not an argument in support of the idea that GamerGate supporters care about ethics in journalism — rather, it is a direct repudiation of that idea.
Citing three pieces from the same libertarian house organ does not help demonstrate how "mainstream sources" view the issue. Rather, it's instructive to examine the front-page article in The New York Times on GamerGate, headlined thusly: Feminist Critics of Video Games Facing Threats in ‘GamerGate’ Campaign. This is not an outlier, rather a prime example of the mainstream coverage of the movement. Others: GamerGate: facing misogyny in the video game world from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, #GamerGate: the misogynist movement blighting the video games industry from The Telegraph, #Gamergate leads to death threats against women in the gaming industry from PBS NewsHour, etc. etc. etc.
The vast, vast majority of reliable sources covering the issue focus largely, if not exclusively, on the issues of harassment and misogyny that were brought to the fore and give the "but ethics" claims only the most dismissive of mentions — usually discussing them as "purported," "ostensible" and otherwise pointing out that the movement never actually raised real ethics issues. Reliable sources, in general, adhere to the POV that "ethics" was a smokescreen for misogynistic harassment. Our article must reflect that that POV is predominant. NorthBySouthBaranof (talk) 09:07, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
The day Gawker Media becomes a widely used RS is the day I know Wikipedia is dead. And, the narrative is failing. The media witch hunts are being questioned. Even now, the chairman of the IGDA Puerto Rico is being thrown under the bus for calling out anti-gg. So let me ask you, how's the smokescreen going for the cronyism in journalism and the gaming industry? I'm not pro-gg, I just didn't drink the Kool-aid™. --DSA510 Pls No H8 09:20, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
Literally none of those links are to Gawker, so I have no idea what you're even talking about here. NorthBySouthBaranof (talk) 15:12, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
20k diverse set of people harassing women for 3+ months for no benefits, or journalism becoming more and more corrupt? I've been doxxed, my life potentially in danger for trying to question the narrative, by anti-gg. I find it harder and harder to stay neutral. And, in what magical way can Gawker Media, a network of awful blog sites/e-tabloids, be defended? --DSA510 Pls No H8 09:25, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
And as usual, the sources provided do not do any research, because it might break the narrative. --DSA510 Pls No H8 09:29, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
Being doxxed is bad, and it seems it happened to Fine Young Capitalists, along with death threats and DDOS. I'm not sure of the exact timeline, but it does somewhat give the lie to unambiguous readings of the situation as GG bad, anti-GG good. There are also facts which are widely known and not in dispute, but (possibly) not attributable to RS, that urge us to tread carefully. I would urge people to consider that the journalists who are reporting on this are basing their stories, by and large, on the type of sources we do not generally use (and with good reason), and drawing conclusions that we would not permit ourselves to draw.
I am even more concerned at the damage that this dispute is causing to the fabric of the community. Numerous instances of bitey behaviour have occurred, ramparts are thrown up and wording which would be summarily made neutral in any other circumstance is defended to the death.
The concept that "#GamerGate is not something Wikpedia covers at present" is not totally abhorrent to me, given the relatively minor nature of the dispute IRL (in real life), and the difficulty of covering an issue bearing where one side claims journalists are unethical, and for which the only RS are journalists.
All the best: Rich Farmbrough16:42, 22 November 2014 (UTC).
I think there is much reason to be skeptical about this controversy. It all began at a one-day filming session for "GAME JAM", a TV reality show in which people reportedly tried to deliberately stoke controversy, such as asking Zoe Quinn 'sexist' questions.[7] I have seen no core philosophical innovation here by any party on any side, rather what smells like PR and social media maneuvering with obvious careerist motivations, whether to tear others down or build oneself up. Whether this is all some new sort of reality show filmed "in the wild" of the internet, or one that has escaped and gone feral, in no case is it worth Wikipedia getting polarized by these ever-shifting and ill-defined disputes. What we are challenged to do is to see that our own policies fairly and effectively. Wnt (talk) 17:47, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
There are many stories where Wikipedia is front and center - however the gamergate controversy is not one of them. Wikipedia has only been mentioned tangentially in any coverage of gamergate - and its likely to stay that way unless the gamergaters turn their harassment campaigns against Wikipedians and wikipedians report them. the view of Wikipedia's involvement/importance in the issue is probably coming from the perspective of someone too deeply personally ensconced in the bubble in both aspects. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 17:56, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
@NBSB I was asked for an opening sentence. "GamerGate is X" is simply wrong. Take the PBS case by NBSB: opening sentenct is Members of the gaming community launched a campaign in August called Gamergate as a response to allegations of unethical journalism. But it has grown to include outright threats against women who work in or critique the industry. That's not much different than the ABC opinion piece. It is not defined by only one side which is why it lives. Certainly all aspects should be covered including misogyny and harassment. It should cover journalism. It should cover consumerism, etc, etc. It should cover comparisons to other issues involving games such as mass shootings (and why that angle to gaming culture died down relatively quickly after real people died vs. hanging on despite in GamerGate). I think it's also clear that it is now a platform from which to speak as opposed to simply a dispute that even involves gamers. Also, I cited three different sources; Reason, ABC and Vox. It was my opinion so I am not sure what you are arguing against. Are you claiming it's not my opinion or trying to marginalize it? Non-gaming pieces normally present both aspects either as a statement or a chronology. If you read the opinion piece through an objective lens, it refutes nothing about GamerGate and provides different aspects of it. Article titles are notoriously bad to use or cite as they are generally written by someone other than the author if the piece. It's the reason an AP story can have the same article but multiple headlines depending on what the local editors want to say. Headlines should never be used. The fact my statement has brought the dispute here is exactly why it's a problem at the article. I've not added any content to the article precisely because it's too toxic and too engulfed in the politics of the editors and players. --DHeyward (talk) 18:18, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
Also, take a look at the NYT piece you cite which is an article about threats. Read the article until you get past just the threats to where they describe GamerGate The instigators of the (harassment) campaign are allied with a broader movement that has rallied around the Twitter hashtag #GamerGate, a term adopted by those who see ethical problems among game journalists and political correctness in their coverage. The more extreme threats, though, seem to be the work of a much smaller faction and aimed at women. And that's from the NYT. They never make the claim that Gamergate is defined by the harassment. We SYNTH that they do, just as you did. Just review the NYT piece for where they mention GG and what they say. --DHeyward (talk) 20:05, 22 November 2014 (UTC)

Full protection of GamerGate

If you didn't notice it Jimbo, the Gamergate controversy has been fully protected for 7 days by User:Gamaliel (which I actually don't disagree much but is kind of iffy) and then User:Nyttend then extended this for 5 months. Literally, 5 months of full protection. Because of edit warring. This is unprecedented and is in bad form and should be reverted back to the 7 days or unprotected all together. Nyttend's response to this is located here, basically saying that every time the page is protected, there's problem editing. Yeah, that justifies it. Tutelary (talk) 18:10, 22 November 2014 (UTC)

Unprecedented? Please look at the protection log; I only restored what was already there. It could also be protected for rampant misuse of primary sources — secondary sources can't yet exist, since the controversy is ongoing, so sources produced after the event won't be able to exist until months or years in the future from now. Nyttend (talk) 18:17, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
Yes, this is unprecedented. I have never seen a page fully protected for this long just because it has 'editing problems'. Guess what. Editing problems are supposed to be dealt with on the talk page and via editing to hopefully have a compromise for certain things. That works. Looking at the logs, there is not a single entry there that details full protection of April 2015 of editing (there was a few for moving), but not for editing. That's simply too long of a time and the reasoning for it is just weak. Pages are supposed to be improved, not stagnated because of obvious problems. Sorry for any editing conflicts relating to this addendum, but even if there was another administrator that protected for that long, I think that they would've made a big mistake too and still be in bad form. Just because another administrator does it doesn't suddenly make it alright. Each situation has its own special circumstances> Tutelary (talk) 18:24, 22 November 2014 (UTC)
I partly agree and partly disagree that editing problems should be dealt with on the talk page. In the case of this article, editing problems should be dealt with by using the community general sanctions. Robert McClenon (talk) 03:58, 23 November 2014 (UTC)
The only time the article was full-protected for longer than a few weeks was an instance when Cuchullain protected the page until September 2015, but then immediately shortened it to a week. Semi-protection has been imposed a few times with an expiration date in April 2015, but never full-protection.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 03:23, 23 November 2014 (UTC)
I have a question. What are those who are complaining about the very long full protection of the article asking User:Jimbo Wales or the WMF to do? Are they just using this talk page to vent, or are they asking Jimbo or the WMF to do something? Robert McClenon (talk) 03:56, 23 November 2014 (UTC)
Often, people bring issues here because it's a way to keep me informed and to seek my advice. One of the reasons I tend to say that coming here is not forum shopping is that no specific requests are usually made, and no specific actions result. But I do think this can be a valuable place to advance the conversation. And of course, it is not impossible that an intervention by me or the WMF could be appropriate - not in this situation but in some situations.
In terms of the specific question, I think it pretty obvious that 5 months is much much too long. The article is not perfect - indeed it is not very good in many respects. There are legitimate questions from legitimate Wikipedians about whether the article does a good enough job accurately reporting on the full range of reliable sources, as opposed to tending to cherry pick one side. That's a conversation that needs to happen, and that's some editing that needs doing in order to reach consensus.
At the same time, emotions have flared. We've had the editor with the most edits to the article doxxed, and we've had that same editor take money from people on a message board on one side of the issue. That's a mess no matter how you look at it. I think that a 7 day break is wise, particularly if used in good faith by the dominant players on both sides to try to hear out the opposition and reach some useful compromises.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 18:36, 24 November 2014 (UTC)
Unfortunately, most discussions that are engaging are hatted. It is rather difficult to discuss anything when stating facts like "journalist Grayson had a relationship with an indie game developer Quinn" is redacted as a BLP violation on the talk page even though it's acknowledged and discussed by Grayson and his employer. The threat of topic bans (and implementation) is quite decidedly in one direction. Heck, a week ago, I added the COI issue to Gamaliel's hat note about becoming part of the controversy.[8] but Gamaliel decided that off-wiki behavior was ok [9]. This was before the money issue I believe. --DHeyward (talk) 03:59, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

What Can Be Done?

I have a suggestion for what Jimbo Wales can do. He can state that, without having studied the details of the page, extended full page protection for a period of months is undesirable, and is in general contrary to the policy that Wikipedia is an encyclopedia that anyone can edit, and, in particular, that when community general sanctions or ArbCom discretionary sanctions have already been authorized, the use of sanctions is normally a less drastic and more appropriate response to disruptive editing than page protection for months. Robert McClenon (talk) 21:43, 23 November 2014 (UTC)

That's pretty much what I was hoping for. I'll probably start a WP:ANI noticeboard when I've got more time, indicated with diffs and the like and precedent and what not. I know at least one other article had this due to a justified extenuating circumstance. Tutelary (talk) 19:38, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
  • As someone who hasn't managed to read even a third of the page and barely has any idea of what Gamergate is actually about - this is troubling. Not because of my ignorance of the topic, but because the editorial controls and processes are absent or ineffective. It is like Fire Department is on fire and the firefighters are suddenly powerless! Gamergate is like all other disputes, but still no one realizes it. A proper plan of action, faithfully executed, would bring a resolution to the situation and without any non-sense about a "faction" system by first establishing the Wikipedia equivalent of Robert's Rules of Order. ChrisGualtieri (talk) 04:28, 28 November 2014 (UTC)
  1. GamerGate matters concerning both editor conduct and editing disputes be affirmed only on the community sanction page and the Arbitration Committee pages for the duration of their relevancy. Inadvertent creations outside this area be closed by any party and the creator informed of this fact. The use of faction claims being directed at or by any editor on any pages will break the decorum of the talk pages and expected conduct. Those who do shall be warned once via special notice that is itself a form of discretionary sanction. Repeat offenses will be sanctioned with a topic ban on the GamerGate pages for a period of time not to exceed 30 calendar days.
  2. Content disputes should be decided upon for a set period of time and should be focused to amend paragraphs or sentences of the article. A lack of a clear consensus kills the motion. The adding immediate pertinent information or other examples of "breaking news" shall also go through this process. Concerns of WP:BLP issues shall be proactively executed provided a coherent case be made. Furthermore, modifications made through this process that are re-argued shall be recorded to prevent the endless discussion of perennial concerns. The result and actions shall also be recorded in a special section on a designated page. Perennial issues can be sanctioned so that they require a quorum of editors or extraordinary evidence before being reopened.

Just to give a few simple ideas that work entirely within the current system without being draconian. Though it would require an amendment to the community sanctions to prevent the rest of the community from being a hostage as part of a larger appeal to authority. ChrisGualtieri (talk) 05:04, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

Said at GGTF arbitration

Some people seem to think that ArbCom is so naive they don't know that the Manchester Gangbangers and their cronies/minions are engaged in institutionalized harassment using ArbCom as one of their harassment tools. They think just explaining that will open their eyes and they'll do the right thing.
No, the only thing that will clear Wikipedia of this vicious coterie is a national publicity campaign to pressure the WMF into enforcing its Terms of Service, including against culpable ArbCom members. (I see several Sitush/Corbett/ cronies/minions are running for the next Arbitration Committee.) And I'm one of dozens who see it that way, we just haven't decided where to organize our efforts. Just because their tactic worked on silencing 1.2 billion Indians with their Brit imperialist drivel doesn't mean it will work on silencing 3.3 billion women. After all 1/2 the members of the Board are women. (Said by:) Carolmooredc (Talkie-Talkie) 14:26, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

  • Jimmy, it is worth noting that Carol has been blocked for the above comment. My own views aside, which I have briefly expressed on her talk page, I am moved to ask what yours are. Thanks. Jusdafax 19:29, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
I'm afraid I don't know enough about the specific details here to be able to make a meaningful comment.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:43, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
Carol is apparently acting out of aggravation with the Gender Gap Task Force arbitration case. I feel she is justifiably upset, though I don't condone these remarks. Here are the relevant details:
Basically, @Sitush: went way over the line, but it seems Carol is the one getting the horns from ArbCom for not being as quiet as a church mouse about it.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 23:15, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
Jimbo at this point you are better to not get involved its another very emotional case which has included everything from random IPs posting, female editors commenting saying they represent women/saying other editors don't represent women to a picture of a boy holding a baby doll in tribute to Eric Corbett on a user's talk-page. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 00:52, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
I think it would be nice to see someone who would object to the way the Arbs are handling this case with regards to Carol. Natch, they are now citing Carol's outburst to validate their original egregious push for a site-ban. Typical Wikipedia approach to attacking the victim. If the victim cracks under the pressure you can then use that as evidence against them.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 01:06, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
I have no interest in the case, but I can't let claims that Sitush has "silenced 1.2 billion Indian editors" stand uncontested. A large number of articles you can read (as in, are actually readable coherent prose), such as Saini, St. Thomas Christians, Burki, Iron Pillar of Delhi, List of Jats, got to their readable state due to Sitush's work. I've done maybe 1/20th of the amount of work Sitush has in the area, and I'm fluent in Hindi and Urdu swear words from having them directed at me; people who work there get subjected to real-world harassment and threats, so we should go way out of our way to assist or at least thank those who choose to keep civilized life possible for the rest of us. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 05:54, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
Be that as it may, the point here is that Sitush appears to be getting handled with kid gloves over his behavior towards Carol, while Carol is being hammered for her reactions to his behavior. It should be the other way around. Simple truth is the whole situation could have been solved without arbitration by imposing an interaction ban, but Sitush insisted there was no reason to sanction him even after his stunt with that draft article and a large number of editors actually back him up for basically the reason you are giving of "he's too valuable to even force him to stay away from someone he tried to write an inflammatory hit piece about".--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 06:17, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
I'm unfamiliar with the matter at hand, so I can't really speak to that; the only thing I do claim to know is that accusing Sitush of crushing Indian editors in the interest carrying out some British imperialist agenda are a little too much to stomach. As far as I know Carolmooredc doesn't edit that topic area, so inserting herself into it seems like an attempt to prolong whatever dispute they already have. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 06:28, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Yo, TDA, there's an Arbcom election on now. If you don't like 'em, vote for somebody you do like rather than moaning and complaining about it. I happen to think Arbcom got this one more or less right, which is a nice finish to a pretty much hit-and-miss sort of year for them. Of course, your mileage may vary. If Jimmy Wales had wanted to comment in the case, there was a time and a place, which he knew about — it's a little late now. Carrite (talk) 06:45, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Jimbo has the ability to remove arbitrators at any point he wants to, as well as to overrule their decisions. This is a case where if it closes as it might, one or the other may be appropriate. Kevin Gorman (talk) 20:41, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
What exactly are you suggesting might be appropriate Kevin, and do you seriously think it likely? Giano (talk) 21:51, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
Oh, yeah, that would go over well. Dive right in there to defend civility on Wikipedia by bringing back Carol Moore from a one year Arbcom ban! Purely hilarious scenario... Carrite (talk) 21:10, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Tarc seemed to sum it up nicely on Carol's talk page, particularly with this observation, "All this is is continuation of the same old stereotypes; men who commit aggressive act after aggressive act are shown no end of leniency, but the "uppity" woman who dares get within the ballpark of same gets the ax." [10] --BoboMeowCat (talk) 20:19, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
It's pure identity politics that are being peddled. As I said back when this case was being considered: that's fine but it has no place at WP. Start an external website and do your political organizing there. Carrite (talk) 21:14, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
I don't think it is a gender thing at all but rather Eric's contributions to Wikipedia that is at play. Lets not kid ourselves, Eric has a-lot of supporters and Carol has few, if Carol had more support from the community I am sure things would be different here. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 22:06, 26 November 2014 (UTC)
The so-called Gender Gap Task Force has made themselves the Wannabe Civility Police in practice. They're fighting an extremely controversial battle from a minority point of view, wrapping their case up in feminist jargon in an attempt to sell it. The entire GGTF case is not what it seems, it's not about misogyny or attacking women at all, a couple crass and ill-tempered utterances of Eric notwithstanding.... It's about so-called "civility" enforcement (a battle fronted by a very tendentious and uncivil editor, ironically). Carrite (talk) 00:40, 27 November 2014 (UTC) Last edit: Carrite (talk) 00:45, 27 November 2014 (UTC)
On investigation, as triggered by the arbitration, Carolmooredc turned out to be the worst imaginable poster child for the gender gap issue on Wikipedia; turns out the "help, help, I'm an oppressed woman" was simply the latest in a series of excuses she has tried to ply to distract from a long, ugly history of WP:BATTLE, WP:CABAL, WP:WAR, WP:POV. On Austrian Economics, it was "help, help, I'm an oppressed leftist libertarian"; on Israel/Palestine it was "help, help, I'm an oppressed opponent of Israel"; turns out only the gender gap issue was capable of generating the level of drama she was seeking, and it's pretty frankly disgusting how much harder the gender gap discussion will be in the future because of it. Goodwinsands (talk) 18:01, 27 November 2014 (UTC)
To be clear, the issue was with Sitush's treatment of Carol. Eric has been very supportive of Sitush along with a number of other editors, but Carol is specifically facing a site-ban over the situation with Sitush. As for Carrite's remarks, I do not give a shit about GGTF or identity politics. My concern is that an editor who was rather clearly being harassed is apparently facing a site-ban for her reaction to that harassment, while the person who harassed her is being complimented and effectively let off with a warning. Were there not a site-ban in play there would be an interaction ban, which Carol was fine with, and is honestly the only outcome that should have come of the matter.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 01:37, 27 November 2014 (UTC)
"Carol is specifically facing a site-ban over the situation with Sitush." No, simply no. Carolmooredc had been topic banned on another issue - completely unrelated to gender - only half a year ago, and instead of learning a lesson from that, she hopped right back into WP:BATTLE behavior. It is the pattern of behavior that is getting her banned, not simply and merely the latest recrudescence of it in its latest manifestation. It is disingenuous to pretend this is not the case, no matter how furiously Carolmooredc waves the 'oppressed uppity woman' flag to distract from her own history here. Goodwinsands (talk) 18:07, 27 November 2014 (UTC)
This finding of act relies primarily on her interactions with Sitush for evidence of misconduct. Only detail that is even relevant to the Gender Gap concerns some AfD comments that several Arbs suggest do not warrant mention in the finding of fact. It is said finding of fact that serves as the basis for the site-ban remedy. Your apparent interest in this case is interesting for someone whose only edits in the past three years are about her.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 04:52, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

Requests for Adminship

There is discussion about reform to the Requests for Adminship process, which is widely considered to be "toxic" in the English Wikipedia. My question for User: Jimbo Wales is what the policies of the WMF are with regard to issuing the administrator privilege in any of the Wikipedias or other WMF wikis. What are the minimum standards that the WMF demands?

By way of background, one editor has proposed that every editor with one year of registration and some number of mainspace edits automatically be given the admin privilege, subject to some unspecified mechanism for removing it for abuse. That proposal is being opposed, but that editor is persisting that this shows an anti-democratic sentiment by the community. Wikipedia is not a democracy. Some editors have said that the WMF will never approve automatic issuance of the admin privilege, which requires a certain degree of active trust of the administrator. So my question is: What are the minimum standards that the WMF will require for issuance of the administrator privilege? What are the terms within which the English Wikipedia community can alter the RFA process? (Also, has the RFA process in the English Wikipedia become so toxic that the WMF should push for reform?) Robert McClenon (talk) 18:36, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

I'm one of the users arguing that the WMF won't go for automatic granting of admin rights, based pretty much entirely on "stuff I think I read", but I'd like to know what the Foundation's actual stance on this is too. Thanks in advance. Ivanvector (talk) 19:10, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
The last few RfAs have been pretty productive. We have gotten better at removing disruptive people from the process and demanding a bit more decorum. I don't think this institution is dead just yet. Automatic adminship is a bit like automatic trust, a very very bad idea. Chillum 19:16, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
Why is automatic trust a "very bad idea". I think it is a very good idea to trust people untill they have demonstrated themselves not to be worthy of trust. I also believe that the idea of "automatic trust" is foundational for wikipedia which is based on trusting anyone with a computer to be able to contribute knowledge. The fact that some people produce disinformation does not mean that we have instituted an onerous process of vetting peoples "competence" in order for us to be able to trust them to edit. We let them do it, and if they show that they are not interested in following the rules we show them the door. I don't see why it should be different with admins. User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 20:38, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
For the most part I agree. My one reservation is that, basically, if I tell everyone in town in advance when the bank and bank vault doors are unlocked and the security guards are drinking their coffee, there's a really good chance that some dishonest people might try to game the system based on that knowledge and try to rob the bank at that time. While most people who would qualify as candidates under automatic granting almost certainly wouldn't be dishonest, the prior declaration makes it much easier for the dishonest people to sneak in. I have no idea how many would be willing to go through the effort of 1 year and 3000 mainspace edits to qualify, of course, but having some sort of potential control might be a good idea, particularly considering the possibility of some people who have plans contrary to BLP. John Carter (talk) 20:48, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
While I agree that automatic granting of admin rights is a poor idea, I think that to revitalize the admin corps it is wise to think about how to streamline the process, and to recognize that certain personality types who would be very very good to have as admins are also, being of a certain modest and calm disposition, unlikely to want to go through a brutal and dehumanizing process to get it. I have in the past proposed that we have a system whereby people can be admitted to the admin group on a probationary basis. If we have a choice to make between "easy to get it, easy to lose it" and "hard to get it, hard to lose it" then I think there are clear reasons to prefer the former rather than the latter.
One thing to note, since the WMF was mentioned here: traditionally the WMF has left such matters more or less entirely in our hands. I think there is a very positive development and mood at the WMF under Lila's leadership to invest more resources directly in community development, and this is likely to result in them hiring some very experienced Wikipedians to spend more time on helping us manage processes that haven't been working very well for a long time. There is a real opportunity for us to shape that in ways that will benefit the health and happiness of the community, and there are obviously big risks of drama if the Foundation acts clumsily.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:45, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
Prediction: raiding a subset of volunteers and making them financially beholden to San Francisco as professional "facilitators" of previously volunteer-driven processes will not end well. Carrite (talk) 20:09, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
(edit conflict) We've talked about RfA reform for a very long time on enwiki with very little movement. It might be that this community is not able to come to consensus on this on its own, and input/guidance/direction from WMF would be constructive and appreciated. I don't know, I've only myself been dabbling in reform proposals for a short time, but I see a lot of entrenched opinions and that's not good for any discussion. Ivanvector (talk) 23:51, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
I'll volunteer to be probationary admin. Just assign a 'crat or 'crats probation officer that would be able to pull the bit without bureaucracy. I'd agree to be at their discretion, again avoiding bureaucracy. I know not to delete the main page and I've yet to screw up templates or misuse rollback. Also I don't particularly care to go through the nomination process as it most likely would not be about suitability to be admin. --DHeyward (talk) 23:29, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
I think all admins should be probationary. And that a consensus in an RfC or at ANI should revoke adminship temporarily.User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 23:38, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
Having not personally reviewed DHeyward's history, which might be important because I think that there are some "red flags" which I might consider disqualifiers (no offense meant, DHeyward), if there are any crats out there willing to give the idea a trial, I would be willing to second or third or whatever seeing how it would work. Any crats out there willing to serve as the probationer? John Carter (talk) 23:46, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
I'll second (or second-and-a-half) John Carter's thoughts. There should be some kind of review before we go giving the bit to any random user, even on a probationary basis. It needn't be RfA, which is horrible, but someone should take a look. But I'm supportive of the idea in general. Ivanvector (talk) 23:55, 25 November 2014 (UTC)
I've had editor reviews before at various times looking for input. The reality is after 9 years and 12,000 edits I'm going to have red flags, green flags, purple flags. Some topics I was before it's time (i.e. I wrote a BLP essay around Daniel Brandt days time and also supported removing the name of someone that died while employed by a congressman as it was being used as a smear - both were controversial at the time but are now pretty much policy. Also have been behind the times too and learned. Doesn't mean that the taste of a clash went away, it just means I have the scars of controversial topics - they certainly wouldn't be tool use issues though). Editors like me are almost here too long to run for a super majority even though I only have one block, no sanctions ever, etc. And like I said, I'd rather be under parole of 'crat/'crats that doesn't need ANI or ArbCom to remove the bit if I screwed up or overreached. I wouldn't mind answering questions either as promoting crats have seen and read many Q and A's. But the current process isn't collaborative or collegial, it's adversarial and not necessarily just about suitability, temperament or help/harm Wikipedia. --DHeyward (talk) 10:58, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

I think what might help make RfA less dehumanizing is a sort of "probationary pass" where an editor who doesn't obviously fail the community standards because of egregious misconduct (or whatever) can be promoted to an admin mentoring program similar to what DHeyward has volunteered for, and similar to the recently started SPI clerk training program. If a new admin's bit can be stripped through some easily accessible community process (another subforum of AN?) then we're less likely to want to mine an editor's history for signs that they will misuse the tools, because if they do they lose the bit. Damage is limited. Perhaps more of the gentle gnomish types we want being admins will step up in that case. But like I said I think there does need to be some kind of preliminary review, or a high bar with absolute targets (e.g. certain length of service/recent editing frequency, no recent blocks/bans), to disqualify editors who shouldn't be admins. A malicious user gaining access to the tools can cause a lot of damage, and we know there are some around. I'm much less concerned about inexperienced users; I think admin probation handles that issue well.

Also, for the record, I have no objection at all to DHeyward being our guinea pig for such a program. Ivanvector (talk) 15:31, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

  • @Robert. I think your question is best directed to WMF Legal, which strikes me as the source of foundation demands for some sort of stringent vetting process prior to granting of access to deleted material. I don't think a simple time-linked autogranting of tools will fly with them, having read between the lines here and there. But ask them. Carrite (talk) 20:12, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

The user in question is @Maunus:. In the RfC discussion at Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)#RFA reform Proposal: Automatic admintools to users with 1 year of registration and 3000 mainspace edits another editor has since proposed that perhaps some sort of automatic, or, maybe more likely, some sort of default granting of adminship might be worth considering on one of the wikipedias which might be experiencing more problems with admins. I was wondering whether there might be any sort of possibility of maybe trying to develop a workable proposal for some sort of "default" granting of adminship of the type mentioned there to experienced users which might be potentially given a trial run in some entities where there might be a pronounced shortage of admins. John Carter (talk) 20:21, 25 November 2014 (UTC)

  • Rfa seems to be doing a bit better as of late. This may be due to more qualified candidates with less baggage behind them and/or fewer persons nitpicking petty issues. It's likely that continued successful Rfas could feed on itself and allow more candidates to volunteer to run if they see the process is less antagonistic.--MONGO 12:41, 26 November 2014 (UTC)

I'm not sure about full adminship, but I do think there should be some mark of tenure for active and hardworking users who haven't just set up their accounts. Tezero (talk) 19:42, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

A Thanksgiving Turkey for you!

Thanksgiving Turkey.jpg
Everymorning talk to me has given you a Turkey! Turkeys promote WikiLove and hopefully this has made your day better. Spread the WikiLove by giving someone else a turkey, whether it be someone you have had disagreements with in the past or a good friend. Happy Thanksgiving!

Spread the goodness of turkey by adding {{Thanksgiving Turkey}} to their talk page with a friendly message.

Everymorning talk to me 22:53, 27 November 2014 (UTC)

Thank you

Hi, Jimbo! Thank you for the best website! Ochilov (talk) 13:04, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

A kitten for you!

Cute grey kitten.jpg

All smart people -- whether good or evil -- have kittens!

Robbie0630 (talk) 03:16, 29 November 2014 (UTC)

Process question for the current ArbCom gender case

Neotarf has been blocked for WP:OUTING by Jehochman. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 04:07, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

Hello, Jimmy.

On Thanksgiving morning I woke up to find that, even though the evidence phase of the current ArbCom gender case is closed, arbitrator Salvio has introduced new evidence against me, without notifying me, and has cast a deciding vote to ban me from English Wikipedia based on the new evidence. [11] I have not been informed of whether I am to be allowed to present evidence of my own, but I am at a huge disadvantage here because I can't see the evidence they are presenting against me, since it has been oversighted. Can this suppressed evidence be provided to me?

I have also been informed that someone tried to present a comment on my behalf to the Committee by email, however it was rejected, for the reason that "for transparency's sake, the committee does not accept comments about open cases by e-mail". However it does appear that the committee is willing to accept new evidence against me, some of it more than 4 months old, after the evidence phase has closed, and add it to the case on behalf of someone who remains anonymous. I would also point out that I was added as a party to the case after the case opened, also at the request of arbitrator Salvio, who was unable to provide any evidence or any reason for doing so. There is a long tradition in Western justice against the use of lettre de cachet, and for the accused to be able to meet their accusers face to face. But in this case the arbitration committee has been less than transparent, and is proposing to act both as judge, and as a proxy for those who wish to present evidence against me anonymously.

I would also mention that one of the oversighted edits in the new evidence against me pertains to events that occurred after I made some edits to a transcript of a Signpost interview of Lila Tretikov, and resulting actions that I took after my email account was bombarded with oversize files, with the stated intention of disrupting my email service. I have asked the individual involved if they would agree to the release of their emails, but permission has been refused. The WMF was involved in this incident, and no actions were taken against anyone at the time, so I am puzzled as to why this is suddenly a new issue, especially when there are privacy issues involved, and the situation has already been handled. Are there WMF records of the incident that I could request, or should I reconsider releasing the emails, which I consider to be private. Any insights would be appreciated.

Regards, —Neotarf (talk) 22:14, 28 November 2014 (UTC)

As you have been told wikipedia is not a legal environment and all of your behavior even months old is still relevant in an Arbcom case. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 22:54, 28 November 2014 (UTC)
HIAB, didn't TParis suggest at ArbCom three days ago to disengage from interacting with Neotarf? Lightbreather (talk) 23:36, 28 November 2014 (UTC)
User:Lightbreather, nice to see you finally logged in. You are quite right he did suggest that, I've chosen to not take that suggestion because what I've said wasn't a personal attack but I'm glad to see everyone in your little circle still remembers how to WP:FORUMSHOP. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 00:11, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
I believe you're casting aspersions, and I think I've said everything I needed to say at ArbCom, so I'll resume my retirement. Bye now. Lightbreather (talk) 00:38, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
The evidence has been presented on the arbcom page somewhat miraculously before you logged in, an odd coincidence that. If you care to explain it there I'm all ears but I notice you don't even deny it. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 00:55, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
How can I be "given a chance to comment on a diff in private" when I do not have access to it? The diff where I documented Tutelary's "own willing disclosure of the information", if information it is, has been suppressed, and my queries about the reason for the suppression have gone unanswered, both on-wiki and by email; it is pointless to have any further discussion until the suppressed edits can be made available, or for arbs to continue to vote to ban me based on the existence of suppressed edits that can not be examined.
I would note that while Mr. Giuliano is quick to champion Tutelary's privacy, in the above post, he makes reference to me as "she". Perhaps Mr. Giuliano can document why he believes I might be female, and where in the wikimedia world I have willingly disclosed such information. —Neotarf (talk) 15:55, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
User:Neotarf have you ever asked them not to refer to you as she? Please provide a diff as to when that happened and I'm sure it will be fixed and User:Salvio giuliano will strike it and refer you to whatever pronoun you wish to use. To be clear though are you trying to attempt to insinuate that he is somehow outing you? I think it's odd that you are picking on one arbitrator when there are 7 that are voting to ban you...scape goat one, and his name just got the short stick? Think about it from an employer employee relationship. An employee can miss 5 days in a set period misses 4 days for various reasons valid or not, but then day 5 rolls around and something legitimate happens and then they lose their job and it's gosh if they just let this slide this one time I'd be fine..completely ignoring the other 4 times they didn't show up to work. Your situation is similar look as far back as the Men's Right's case, you were involved. It's a never ending nightmare. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 16:26, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
The only 'never ending nightmare' is the way you and others are pursing every means possible to pursue those daring to raise the issue of gender disparity on Wikipedia. AnonNep (talk) 16:40, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
Ditto. And the more decent guys help fight this nonsense, the better. That's an invitation with a big smiley. Face-smile.svg Carolmooredc (Talkie-Talkie) 18:24, 29 November 2014 (UTC)
Neotarf, if "the person involved" was the one sending the over-sized emails, I cannot see why you would be bound not to release those emails. Indeed you could validly release them to law enforcement, and the appropriate abuse contact at their ISP. As to Salvio's behaviour, I called him out on this right at the start, and he refused to recuse. Have no fear, though, you have your supporter on ArbCom and many new remedies have been proposed and much banning all around will ensue... (More likely most of it will grind to a stumbling halt, and a closure vote will eventually be taken). All the best: Rich Farmbrough00:52, 29 November 2014 (UTC).
To the best of my knowledge: 1) There is no rule that arbs can't present evidence that doesn't come from the evidence section of a case. I've seen it happen before. 2) There is no time limit on the age of a diff used in an arbitration case. Cardamon (talk) 04:17, 30 November 2014 (UTC)
I'm happy to let this discussion continue here if it is useful, but it seems likely to me that it isn't very useful. In any event, I will not be doing anything other than just reading this unless something more material surfaces. I can say this by way of broad philosophical statement: it is important in ArbCom cases that people not be punished based on evidence that they haven't seen or are not allowed the chance to rebut. There can be exceptions, but they are very rare.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 02:53, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
I have been trying to post for the last hour but unfortunately the page is not stable. —Neotarf (talk) 02:59, 1 December 2014 (UTC)


Neotarf has been trying for the last hour to publish my last name on Wikipedia. Tutelary (talk) 03:00, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
The good news is that it has been revdeleted but I'm surprised they haven't blocked Neotarf but as it's moot in a few hours maybe they are just being generous. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 03:02, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
You would be surprised with the amount of people with whatever your last name is in the world. I know I was shocked when I looked on facebook lol. Anyways I agree that this isn't right, Neotarf is getting banned anyways so I don't know if it is a dying man's last words so to speak. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 03:03, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm surprised that Neotarf hasn't been blocked also. EChastain (talk) 03:22, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Same here, the user has already tried outing and now has done refactoring to other's comments. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 03:23, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
I'd change the he before there is an issue with that as they have not id a gender on wiki. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 03:25, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

GGTF interactions arbcom case has now closed

@Jimbo, in September, in this thread on your talk page, you said that you would welcome this case. The thread in question was opened by Carolmooredc (now site banned and topic banned) to tell you she had started an ANI complaint about the alleged disruption of GGTF by 3 users. Neotarf (now site banned and topic banned) added to the thread by telling you that they had requested at ANI that the three users be page banned from the GGTF. Lightbreather (now blocked for socking in the case talk pages, though not a party) added in the same thread that "It is disgraceful that millions of people get their information from a male dominated (85% or more) editing community that regularly dismisses women's complaints about and attempts to address incivility toward individuals and toward projects like the Gender gap task force." Whilst 2 of the users that Carolemooredc and Neotarf were complaining about have been topic banned, the most severe sanctions have been reserved for Carolemooredc and Neotarf themselves. You appeared at that time to (putting it crudely) take the side of those who were complaining about the three users. I have two questions: firstly, what's your view of the arbcom decision? secondly, if you think arbcom decided it correctly, do you now think this wasn't as much of a "one side at fault" situation as your previous comments gave the impression you believed. Given that you appeared to encourage the case I hope you don't say you haven't looked into it sufficiently to give an opinion. DeCausa (talk) 10:42, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia is not a battle ground and I will tell you that several GGTF participants thanked me when I blocked Neotarf for outing. I think that a quiet majority at GGTF supports the removal of troublemakers, regardless of what opinions those users hold. The users banned were sanctioned in part for things outside the scope of GGTF. I don't think it's right to divide users into two "sides" and count how many got banned on each "side" as a means of keeping score. Jehochman Talk 11:48, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
I didn't. My question implies it is always an oversimplification to divide something like this into "sides", and then declare which "side" is in the right. DeCausa (talk) 13:06, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
I fully stand by my earlier remarks. You appear to be viewing my remarks through a lens that isn't true - a lens of "sides" which I reject. I think a lot of people should be sitebanned for misbehavior and that the community will begin to grow and flourish again when we get rid of people who bring more drama than they are worth. As to specific editors in this specific case, I'm afraid I will have to disappoint you by declining to offer detailed opinions of the ArbCom decision. My role with respect to ArbCom doesn't consist of judging whether I agree with specific detailed decisions, but rather to give some oversight as to whether they are following appropriate and fair processes and procedures.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:45, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for your response. In fact, this was what I was really wondering: X points out Y's behaviour to you and says Y should be banned. You look at Y's behaviour and say "yes Y should be banned". X then trumpets this as a diff - your opinion carries weight and influence. But actually X's behaviour is as bad or worse. If you haven't examined it, is it wise for you to enter the fray (especially in a contentious area) and give your opinion? DeCausa (talk) 13:54, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Yes. As I said, I'm not making any statements about the ultimate outcome of the ArbCom case, so I'm very much not saying that "X's behaviour is as bad or worse". You seem to be pushing me to retry the ArbCom case or state how I would have decided this differently. I'm not going there.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:15, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
No, I wasn't trying to do that with my last post, that's why I went for X and Y. I was asking about your perception of the risks associated with giving forthright opinions on circumstances that are presented to you, but which are often more complex and nuanced than might appear from a few diffs. But I see you said "yes" (surprisingly) - so I think I have my answer. Thanks. DeCausa (talk) 15:29, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
I don't think the situation was more complex and nuanced that my initial remarks indicated. Things are always very very complex and very very nuanced, and I think I do a good job of acknowledging that. I don't see what's surprising about me being so careful to make things like that as clear as I can.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:37, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
There's no benefit in debating the first sentence in your above reply. Now that the case evidence has provided a full context, everyone can and will take their own view on that. Thanks for taking the time to reply to my questions. DeCausa (talk) 16:26, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

so the answer then to "is it wise for you to enter the fray (especially in a contentious area) and give your opinion?" is always going to be "Yes".  pablo 20:13, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

Not always. Only when I am confident that I am right (as I was in this case) and can contribute usefully to the discussion about how to improve the tone and atmosphere in the community. It is wise for me to refuse to comment on matters that I don't know enough about - and so I often do refuse to comment.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:03, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
So you won't comment on the case, but how about a hypothetical? Let's say there is a male editor who, after the conclusion of an arbitration case, begins following a female editor from the same case all over the site for months. When that editor is reported for this behavior and there is a proposal to bar the male editor from interacting with the female editor, another male editor comes to his defense and suggests if the male editor is barred from interacting with the female editor that maybe he will start "following her around" instead. After the proposal is passed the other male editor announces he is going to be doing work on Wikipedia regarding a link, which just happens to be the personal website of the female editor. The female editor objects and questions his intentions. This male editor then begins taunting her with personal details researched online and plainly expresses his intentions to write a bio about her here. Despite several other objections and the female editor's own protests, this male editor creates a draft that he explains is fully intended to be made into a live article all about the female editor. It is apparent that certain details have been cherry-picked from primary sources and articles about the female editor and presented in a way that is clearly aimed at being unflattering towards her. Despite numerous editors suggesting his actions are woefully inappropriate he insists that he is a perfectly good editor who is being neutral towards this person he detests. Would you consider it acceptable for the Arbitration Committee to ban the female editor for commenting about this male editor's behavior, while giving the male editor essentially nothing more than a warning after praising his efforts on this site?--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 21:23, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
At the WP:Help Desk, it is not uncommon for an editor to post a "hypothetical" question and ask what the Wikipedia policy is. The Help Desk volunteers usually decline to answer the "hypothetical" question, which is very seldom hypothetical, but is really being stated hypothetically in order to get an opinion permitting them to wikilawyer on either a conduct dispute or a content dispute. Sometimes the Help Desk editors look at contribution history to determine what the actual issue is and give advice on the actual issue, such as to take the content issue to a dispute resolution process. That appears to be what TDA is doing, posing a supposedly hypothetical case. As is usually the situation, case is not hypothetical, only a biased summary of one aspect of the actual case, failing to take into account additional details that were noted by the ArbCom. I have confidence that User:Jimbo Wales is smart enough to avoid taking the bait, which would then be used to argue that ArbCom blew the case. Robert McClenon (talk) 21:48, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
@TDA. That you have managed to reduce this to "male editor" and "female editor" pretty well illustrates what has been wrong with GGTF from day one — identity politics. Not all male editors are sexist harassers. Not all female editors are community-first saints... The biography subject was reeeeeaaaaaaallllly borderline with respect to GNG and should not have been attempted by their on-wiki opponent — as was addressed at AfD and by ArbCom. If you think that has any relationship whatsoever to why the biography subject was banned in the case, you need to reread the case and discussion pages from the start and visit the ArbCom archives dealing with their previous case. Carrite (talk) 21:52, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
User:Carrite and I disagree more often then we agree (which illustrates that male editors do not always think alike). When we agree, it may illustrate that User:The Devil's Advocate is stretching things. Robert McClenon (talk) 21:57, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
TDA wasn't "posing a supposedly hypothetical case", it was genuinely hypothetical. Apart from anything else, nothing in the GGTF case concerned "ban[ning] the female editor for commenting about this male editor's behavior". DeCausa (talk) 22:39, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Of course my hypothetical was not really a hypothetical since it is something that has actually happened. The finding of fact regarding Carol is so weak and so centered on Sitush that it makes me seriously question the judgment of all Arbs involved. Had they proposed a harsher sanction for Sitush and cited serious evidence of misconduct by Carol unrelated to Sitush this result could be acceptable. This is not what they did. Instead they basically did what I just laid out above. I am not big into identity politics, but I do think it demonstrates a serious lack of self-awareness for Arbs to have taken this particular approach regarding the Gender Gap Task Force case given how it looks in context.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 22:59, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
User:DeCausa: TDA acknowledges that it wasn't really a hypothetical case, just a partly correct and partly incorrect statement of part of the actual case. Just because TDA's description of the situation is incomplete and misleading does not make it fictional or hypothetical. Therefore posing the "hypothetical" case was meant as a trick question. Robert McClenon (talk) 21:07, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
Hopefully you do realise that you stated the blindingly obvious - with the exception of your penultimate sentence. The divergence from reality makes it hypothetical. He just didn't intend it to be read in that way. DeCausa (talk) 21:24, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
How did I diverge from reality? The cited comments about Sitush, which are the bulk of the argument against her in the finding of fact, are her talking about how Sitush was hounding her and criticizing his conduct towards her. One of the diffs was literally just her responding to an admin on her page about a possible interaction ban and raising basic understandings about what would be allowed.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 06:43, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Here's where you can discuss this case where the relevant people will see your feedback. It would be rude to bore our host by re-hashing the entire case here.

Please leave comments there. Jehochman Talk 02:52, 2 December 2014 (UTC)

In the summer the Gender Gap list started discussing re-booting its work, this essay contains a selection of quotes from the list for June – September 2014, i.e. prior to the recent Arbcom case. --The Vintage Feminist (talk) 00:20, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Has the 5P and our !rules become too static?

When is the last time our !rules have been drastically changed, a !rule scrapped, or it's scope fundamentally enhanced or diminished? Despite having IAR and essays deploring instruction creep, we seem down the road towards more bureaucratic mud and a solidifying and codifying of our policies, guidelines, and important essays into "this is how it's always been done, and so it shall always be!" instead of what I always thought our !rules were intended to be- a statement of "this is how we solved this problem last time, adjust this !rule as new consensus finds new problems need different solutions, and adjust this policy/guideline accordingly to assist in the next time being more efficient". Are we stuck in a mode to which Thomas Jefferson was afraid the USA would find itself in- "some men look at constitutions with sanctimonious reverence and deem them like the ark of the covenant, too sacred to be touched". Perhaps we need to do what Jefferson had hoped the USA would do, have a new constitution every so often (more along the lines of modern French history I suppose, minus the whole Nazi collaboration part); in Wikipedia perhaps the equivalent would be to open up the main policies in a sandbox to be rewritten from scratch where there wont be those who say "but that's what it has said since 2009!" as an excuse for why some thing can not be changed. But this is just my opinion. I'm sure there will be a lot more. In opposition.Camelbinky (talk) 21:10, 2 December 2014 (UTC)

What changes in particular are you proposing? I do see a general issue that significant change is extremely difficult because the English Wikipedia is governed by consensus rather than by majority, and that consensus is difficult to achieve with as varied as the English Wikipedia. Are you proposing anything in particular, or just being abstract?
Is this perhaps a proposal for something along the lines of a Constitutional convention (political meeting)? Honestly, I could and do see some merit to having something like that take place on a fairly regular, if rather lengthy, interval. A little rebellion now and again is a good thing because it tends to make it easier to enact reasonable changes which would be glossed over because of "tradition" or lethargy or whatever you want to call it. Some sort of specific proposal of such a convention might get enough support to make some sort of periodic basic review possible. John Carter (talk) 22:14, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
Last such gathering, if not advertised as such, was in London this last summer. A couple of thousand people participated, that's all. A very large number of RfCs added together, could perhaps count a similar number of participants. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 23:48, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
Ah, yes, the meeting of the connected, the monied and the grant-worthy faithful. I couldn't attend because of financial constraints, despite living in the country where it was held. That said, I probably would not have attended anyway because I am a sort-of excluded group, being one of the profoundly deaf who cannot hear what is going on, who get next to no transcripts or sign-language facilities etc. I doubt that I missed anything of note but, please, don't let anyone suggest that Wikimania is representative of anything. From all the things I have read, in relation to many such events hosted around the world, it seems to be more of a fan club, a networking facility, an evangelistic meeting etc. I'm sure that it gives much pleasure to many people but let's not over-rate it. (Still not sure if I am allowed on this page or not - please let me know.) - Sitush (talk) 00:33, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Personally, I think if we were to have a real "meeting" of sorts to revise policy, the optimum place to do so would be here, online on wikipedia, where the discussion could be recorded in the edits and it would be basically transparent, as opposed to personal meetings which rarely are as transparent. John Carter (talk) 00:40, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
I would support an on-line convention. My upstream post maybe should have been addressed to the owner of this talk page. Because of the near-impossibility of achieving consensus on any significant change, any major change will have to come with the backing of the WMF. The English Wikipedia will never make any major changes in its pillars or policies unless it is pushed. I would strongly encourage the WMF to call for an on-line convention, but with the understanding that consensus does not require super-consensus, or some other set of rules that might really be adopted. More later. Robert McClenon (talk) 04:17, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Physical meetings aren't the place to accomplish anything of this magnitude. It's a little hard to change anything on WP, the decision-making system (which basically requires super-majorities agreeing to do something specific amidst a mass of sometimes contradictory simultaneous proposals) is very conservative — it preserves the status quo. Change happens slowly and piecemeal. The Village Pump works as well as anything — which is to say: pretty much not at all. I doubt much can be done in the way of fundamental alteration of the WP system. It is what it is. Carrite (talk) 04:25, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
I think it could be doable, maybe, if the approach taken were that there would be multiple "rounds" of proposals, probably more than one variant phrasing for each proposal, gathered and then voted on, with the highest-level proposals, probably for the pillars, first, and then for "core policies," and then policies describing specific applications of those policies, etc., etc., etc. If there were to be, for instance, a month or two allocated for each round, with a period of voting at the end of each round, possibly with some sort of ranked voting system and if necessary run-off voting after rounds if required, it might be doable. Having said that, it might also take up to or over a year to accomplish, and there is a real chance that interest would wane before the process were even remotely finished. But, for the comparative minutiae of the lowest-level proposals, even that might not be necessarily a bad thing. John Carter (talk) 15:59, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Is Wikipedia going to have a Constitution? GoodDay (talk) 06:10, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

On-Line Convention

The original poster, User:Camelbinky, asked when the last time was that our rules have been drastically changed, and whether the five pillars of Wikipedia have become too static. In looking over the five pillars, I don't see anything that I would propose be changed. Does the OP propose a change to the five pillars? I can identify several areas where our policies and procedures should be changed, but where we are locked in by the requirement for consensus. The problem is not so much, as the OP implied, that Wikipedians give too much value to how we have done things for several years, so much as that we don't have consensus for what to do differently. Consensus has become a burden. A few areas in which there is dissatisfaction but not consensus include Requests for Adminship (many editors think that the process is toxic, but some think that it has improved, and in any event there is no single consensus proposal for reform), paid commercial editing (some editors think that paid commercial editors should be banned, some think that paid commercial editing should be discouraged and must be disclosed, a few editors think that paid editing is actually a constructive influence), the Arbitration Committee (most editors think that it is too slow, some think that it should be split into subcommittees or meet in panels, some favor some other approach), administrators in general (some think that administrators should serve for a term of years, some think that they should be probationary for one year, et cetera), civility enforcement (some think that it should be stricter, some think that it should be looser, some think that there should be a list of naughty words), and so on. The problem is that we will never get consensus. My first question, for the owner of this talk page, is whether the WMF can intervene, perhaps by calling an on-line convention and specifying that it may change policies by majority rather than consensus. My second question, for the original poster, is whether he or she was proposing anything in particular, or just trying to start a discussion. Robert McClenon (talk) 17:40, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia's dismissal of majority rule in favor of hokey-pokey pseudo-consensus decision making and the absolutely unstructured RFC process is one of its original sins. It's a minor miracle that the site is still functioning after having been based on that shaky and flaky system of governance. Still, at this point it is what it is... Change is going to be slow and piecemeal. Carrite (talk) 17:08, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Yes, majority rule would be great. "Attention followers! The world must know that evolution is just an unproven idea foisted upon us by the godless! Go here and check a box. You don't have to think or reason, just push a button." --NeilN talk to me 22:49, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
I pretty much agree with NeilN. WP:CONSENSUS might be a somewhat vague idea but it is superior to the alternative which, on hot topics, is almost certain to result in issues with meatpuppetry etc. You only have to look at caste articles and the "calls to arms" on off-wiki forums to see that. The logical problem is the chicken-and-egg thing: we have policies that are supposedly derived from consensus and those policies are enforced using the consensus argument. - Sitush (talk) 00:07, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
There is a difference between content decisions and site governance. Carrite (talk) 01:07, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps. Robert has been trundling around with a lot of policy proposals etc in the last few weeks, as well as being involved in some other controversial things that have (sometimes) backfired. I guess this might be a wood/trees situation, where I'm looking at it from close-up and they're looking at it from 20,000 feet/metres/miles/kilometres. - Sitush (talk) 01:11, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

Per the recommendation of Jehochman, I'm closing this thread down. For the record, my view on the principle is that paid editing is incompatible with Wikipedia adminship. As to the specifics of whatever this was all about, by the time I looked at it, the case had already been declined by ArbCom so it isn't relevant to discuss.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:51, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.

Jimbo, in view of the statements you've made on the subject of paid editing, I thought you should be aware of this arbitration request. It seems to me that Arbcom is about to set an unfortunate precedent here. Thanks. ReverendWayne (talk) 15:35, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

No evidence has been submitted that the user in question is currently or has any plans of engaging in paid editing. So there is no precedent being set other than sanctions not being punitive.User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 16:02, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
So, as long as you stop when you get caught, it's all good? ReverendWayne (talk) 16:08, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
She paid her dues at that time. No double Jeopardy.User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 16:12, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
It's not double jeopardy. She was fired by WMF for paid editing. Whether she should keep her admin status on en-wiki is a separate question. ReverendWayne (talk) 17:14, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
As you can see from the discussion below, I am not the biggest fan of paid editing in the world. But what I don't understand is why you and another editor have suddenly come out of the blue to latch on to this particular issue. It serves no useful purpose and frankly I don't get it. Coretheapple (talk) 22:42, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Off hand, I'd say that RFarb looks more like a continuation of harassment against an editor than anything else. Resolute 16:10, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
I agree.User:Maunus ·ʍaunus·snunɐw· 16:12, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
That's a pretty serious claim, and I ask that you provide diffs or retract it. The filing party has never interacted with Missvain/Sarah before. KonveyorBelt 17:51, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Which begs the question: What is Pudeo doing involving themselves then? As you say, no interaction before. Instead, they just allow an issue to go cold for nearly a year then whip out an RFArb without making even the pretense of discussion or dispute resolution. I won't say that Pudeo's actions fall to the level of bad faith, but I would consider them bad form. I also see an editor in ReverendWayne who has barely edited at all in the past year, was also apparently uninvolved in the original dispute, yet pops out of the woodwork demanding answers, even to the point of forum shopping this thread. A couple of the comments on the RFArb itself are wondering the same thing I am - what purpose, aside from griefing an editor, does this request serve? Resolute 20:06, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Resolute, I haven't looked at your editing history. I think it's better to engage the substance of an argument than to investigate the person who's making it, but I understand that not everyone shares my view. My interest is in defending Wikipedia's administrator accountability policy, which has been weakened by allowing an administrator to ignore valid concerns of the community. Arbitration proceedings do provide a place for uninvolved editors to offer their opinions, and you may have noticed that I expressed similar concerns in the case of User:Fæ, with whom I was likewise uninvolved. I hope this satisfies your curiosity to some extent. ReverendWayne (talk) 23:54, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

Paid editors have been required to disclose as much since June; before that there was no rule. ArbCom is ultimately about dispute resolution and rule enforcement, where all disputes are resolved and no rules are being broken, there's not much for them to do. WilyD 18:02, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Given Wikipedia's/WMF's spineless attitude on the subject, I don't think it's very fair to hold an editor or administrator to a standard that does not exist. Outlaw paid editing by administrators, make it retroactive if you want, and then crack down. But right now paid editors in the admin corps can work the gravy train as much as they want, as long as they disclose or exploit the gaping loopholes. Coretheapple (talk) 18:15, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
I don't think that it is accurate to characterize the WMF as taking a spineless attitude toward paid editing. The push to tighten the rules on paid editing has come primarily from User:Jimbo Wales, who is a member of the board of the WMF, and also from the WMF board in general. The English Wikipedia is what is deeply divided on paid editing, because the English Wikipedia community is hamstrung by the mandate to act only on consensus. The ArbCom is bound by policies (and the lack of policies) made by the English Wikipedia community. Robert McClenon (talk) 18:45, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
It's accurate because paid editing was not banned. Coretheapple (talk) 21:55, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Last year, I was given a 10 pound award by the UK Wikimedia branch for my efforts during a contest on wikisource. I didn't take it and one reason was, at least theoretically, that might in the eyes of some have made me a "paid editor" who might be seen as having some sort of COI regarding editing material related to wikipedia on that basis.
Having said that, I tend to think that if we are to have paid editing, admins are probably the better people to do so. As admins, they tend to get more scrutiny than a lot of others, and they are at least theoretically aware of our policies and guidelines regarding content and might on that basis do work more compliant with other policies and guidelines than most others. Maybe. I don't like it, never have, and never will, but given the pathetic weakness of a lot of our content related to businesses in general, I can't object as much as I might like to otherwise. John Carter (talk) 18:23, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
That would certainly be a straightfoward way of solidifying the image of admins as "super-users" who can get away with murder. Since I hate the doubletalk which holds that admins are just "ordinary users" without special privileges or prerogatives, I wouldn't mind that at all. Coretheapple (talk) 18:28, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
I guess you decided to completely overlook part of my statement in your ongoing efforts of evangelization on this topic, particularly regarding the fact that admins in general get more scrutiny than others, in your obvious attempt to keep on the attack regarding this issue in any and all instances. Your own comment seems to be a more straightforward attempt at beating a horse than the comment to which it was referring. John Carter (talk) 18:37, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Yeah we all know how easy it is to remove administrators. Touche! Coretheapple (talk) 18:41, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
I notice that by your statement above the only response you would even consider remotely acceptable would be removing their administrator status. You apparently consider that more important than verifying the content, or apparently anything else. Are you really interested in supervising any possible content which might have been done by a paid editor, or simply trying to play "gotcha" to those individuals who have been alleged to have done so? John Carter (talk) 18:55, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Look, if you want to give all administrators a ticket on the gravy train, I don't want to discourage you. It may not do Wikipedia's reputation any good, or help fund raising very much, but that's no concern of mine. More power to you, and have a nice day. Coretheapple (talk) 21:52, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Wikipedia talk:Requests for adminship#Desysopping proposal - and of course, if it takes off, feel free to run me through it. ;) WilyD 18:57, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

From WP:ADMINACCT: "Administrators are expected to respond promptly and civilly to queries about their Wikipedia-related conduct and administrator actions, and to justify them when needed." That's the rule that's being broken here. Isn't paid editing by an administrator, even if it's not explicitly prohibited, a legitimate concern of the community? Administrators don't have the option to stonewall for a few months and let the whole thing blow over. And as reading the admin accountability policy ought to make clear, it does not apply only to misuse of admin tools. ReverendWayne (talk) 18:43, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

You do not seem to believe that there may have been some degree of off-wiki discussion on this topic, nor that at least one person whom I know to be no true "fan" of wikipedia, Carrite, has said in his lengthy review of the matter he could find little if any evidence. In some cases, it might be more reasonable for some discussions involving privacy concerns to take place off-wiki. That may well have been done here. To the degree that some of the comments involved seem to be implying that any accusation must be treated as being factually accurate, and I'm not sure that is necessarily a reasonable conclusion in this or any matters of this type, I can say this seems to me to be perhaps less interest in solving a problem than perhaps finding a handy scapegoat to make some people feel happy or fulfilled. I would actually prefer trying to achieve the former myself. John Carter (talk) 19:00, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm a fan of Wikipedia, look what I did today: Fry's Army... Now the Wikimedia Foundation, them not so much... But even they have good eggs and bad eggs... —Tim /// Carrite (talk) 07:55, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Prior to the most recent Arbcom decision I'd suggest to take it there, now, I'd say 'Why is everyone such a c*nt' on such issues?' AnonNep (talk) 22:14, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

The request has been declined, but I made this statement right before in case anyone wants to investigate further.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 05:46, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

Sarah, or Missvain discerned the notability of Zoe Quinn before the entire world did? How dare she? She wrote "blah, blah, blah" as a placeholder on her own sandbox page while fleshing out a reference? Get out the pitchforks. How fortunate we are to have a "detective" like The Devil's Advocate on duty here. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 08:16, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Yeah, that is totally a full and accurate description of what I presented in the first paragraph.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 08:26, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Jesus. Should have known that TDA's interest here would be in pushing his GamerGate agenda... Resolute 15:28, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
And again, we see transparently bogus complaints thrown at her, for which it's hard to imagine any purpose other than harassment. On the off chance there's actually some misbehaviour, I'd recommend reading The Boy Who Cried Wolf. WilyD 09:59, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
  • This conversation should be closed down because it's rude to talk about a third party outside of our dispute resolution process. You can go talk to the editor directly if you want to. This page is for talking with Jimmy, or talking about Wikipedia, not gossiping about somebody. Jehochman Talk 15:16, 4 December 2014 (UTC)

Site bans

"I think a lot of people should be sitebanned for misbehavior and that the community will begin to grow and flourish again when we get rid of people who bring more drama than they are worth. "

This is really a weak argument. We have banned many many people, often for no discernible cause, and often our most productive people. Robust research into reasons for leaving showed that the arguments about the community environment were overblown, certainly those relating to "drama". It is far more productive to work to change the way people interact, than to simply ban them. Banning is a "one size fits all" mentality.

Regarding the recent case I believed that the ArbCom had managed, after much wrangling to put together a ban-free solution, and turned my attention away from the recent case, to find now that some of the more progressive measures have been overthrown by the reactionary ones is a disappointment, but is not unusual. I regret the loss of two potential (and past) assets to the project.

All the best: Rich Farmbrough00:41, 5 December 2014 (UTC).

Rich Farmbrough, I would like to see a list of ten, or seven, or perhaps even five editors who were banned for "no discernible cause, and often our most productive people". In my experience, the discernable cause is readily visible, and amounts to massive disruption of the encyclopedia. But maybe there are many unjust bans I haven't noticed. Bring the account names forward, so that people of good will can campaign against this injustice you describe. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 05:24, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Tim Toni‎

Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Tim Toni‎ is open for conversation. If you have the time, examine the debate and yield an opinion. Thanks! Seattle (talk) 00:36, 6 December 2014 (UTC)


Jimbo - see [12] Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 05:36, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Very interesting! I'd never thought of this approach, so let me say it in my own words to see if I can capture what you are saying: if someone can't be substantively discussed in any Wikipedia entry other than their own biography, this is a warning sign to us that the person may be simply "famous for being famous" and therefore not truly encyclopedic. I write it this way ("a warning sign to us") to avoid overstating the case, as there could certainly be exceptions. And there are some ways that people can try to be a bit wikilawyerly about it - imagine a set of twins, each of whom could in theory be discussed in each other's entry, but taken as a pair, they aren't notable for any other topic. I think such games playing, though, doesn't really do anything to undermine your core insight here.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:04, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Yes - precisely it - sort of a boomerang effect. If the person has not done anything that could be reasonably included in a nonbiographic article, then this comes into play (a bit like being solely notable for being a relative and having done nothing else notable) Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 13:09, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Oh yeah, famous for being famous. I first came across this meme almost 20 years ago in the book Realtime Interrupt by James Hogan. Highly recommended if you like Hard science fiction. I lump a fair number of people in this category. Most reality TV stars for example. I vote we delete Kim Kardashian. (That's an attempt at humor BTW. Don't go ballistic KK fans.) Nyth83 (talk) 22:10, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

I saw advertisment

Is it some kind of advertisment in all pages of wikiquote? Ochilov (talk) 20:39, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

What did you see? I don't see anything unusual there. There have been reports of a virus which inserts advertisements into Wikipedia pages, maybe you saw a variant of that?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:44, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Maybe this. I just out of my home and I can't be sure about viruses. Ochilov (talk) 20:45, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm in agreement with Jimbo, I can't see anything unusual there. What did you think was unusual @Ochilov:?--5 albert square (talk) 20:51, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Somebody told me on my discussion page, that it was green userbox advertisment. Ochilov (talk) 08:56, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
I've read the post on your talk page now, I've looked at the page you posted above and I'm still not seeing what you're seeing. I suspect you may have malware or a virus on your computer. I suggest running an anti-virus check etc--5 albert square (talk) 15:54, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

A barnstar for you!

WikiDefender Barnstar Hires.png The Defender of the Wiki Barnstar
For supporting neutrality in not redirecting the "Cultural Marxism" page. Supremebeanie (talk) 00:37, 7 December 2014 (UTC)


Hey there. :-)
Black Quarterback (talk) 01:29, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

(talk page stalker) Hi @Black Quarterback:
A belated welcome to Wikipedia!
What can we do for you?--5 albert square (talk) 01:36, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Nothing, just saying hi!
Black Quarterback (talk) 02:12, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

A cup of coffee for you!

A small cup of coffee.JPG I never realized how active you were in the community, I wish you luck and here's a cup of joe to help relieve some stress. Bugboy52.4 ¦ =-= 16:57, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Please support my proposal in Wikipedia talk:Community portal

Currently the portal's section "help out" lacks "Create these articles", "Represent a worldwide view" and "Add historical information", which is odd since there are still plenty of notable uncreated articles, e.g. smokers' rights and Joseph Charles Aub, plenty of articles with geographic imbalances and plenty of articles lacking sufficient historical information, and the issues are no less serious than the fact that there are still many articles requiring update. So please go to that page and support my proposal to add "Create these articles", "Represent a worldwide view" and "Add historical information" to the section "help out".--RekishiEJ (talk) 03:58, 8 December 2014 (UTC)


I see that this talk page has been semi-protected due to block evasion. I thought that User:Jimbo Wales had traditionally had an open-door policy on this page with regard to blocked and banned users, so that this page was an exception to the rule that editing logged out by blocked or banned users was sockpuppetry. There was a recent ArbCom case resulting from an edit-war over the removal of posts by banned users. Looking over that case, I don't see that the ArbCom changed the status of this page. Has Jimbo changed the policy on this page and requested the semi-protection? In view of some of the recent posts by IPs to this page, the semi-protection is probably a good idea, but was it Jimbo's idea? Just asking. Robert McClenon (talk) 23:44, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

Nope. He's elaborated on this a few times. Interesting discussions have been removed as a result of this, too. (By the protecting admin) Also relevant: User_talk:HJ_Mitchell#Would_you_please_partially_self_revert.3F Tutelary (talk) 00:04, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
What is the point of drawing attention to obvious trolling? People should work out the purpose of Wikipedia and promote that purpose. Anyone wanting gossip should go to the other website. Thanks to HJ Mitchell! Johnuniq (talk) 00:37, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm fine with temporary semi-protection and I'm also fine with the occasional removal of tedious rehashes of old points by banned users. But I also in general want to keep an open door policy, even to banned editors, without giving them an infinite soapbox to harass me and others. I'd say that if I've responded to someone, that's a good indicator that I think the question and my answer should stand publicly - though 'hatting' is a good option if the discussion seems to be spinning into uselessness. These are going to be difficult judgment calls and the main thing that I think came out of the recent ArbCom case is that good users should assume good faith and try not to edit war about such things. In the discussion on HJ Mitchell's talk page, there was a good suggestion: if a user in good standing feels that there was a valid question that needs answering, then they can ask it themselves. I think that's a good approach.
In the two specific threads that were removed, I gave my answer to one: WP:CHILDPROTECT is policy which can and will be enforced both by the community in some cases, and by the WMF in some cases. The other, well, I have to defer to WMF Legal for further questions in part because of the delicate nature of such matters, but also in part because I'm not personally privy to recent developments. (I could ask, and they would give me a detailed briefing, but I'm not that interested in the details right now. I think the Foundation should take a much harder line and ban not just based on the narrow grounds they use today, but also quite a few abusers who are disrupting the community, but that's another question for another day.)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:16, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Err, are you talking the WMF ban more people on child protection issues or....something else? I really hope you're not referring to people in the case just closed as I am sure everyone is taking a step back, recharging, calming down and (hopefully) moving on. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 13:14, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Sorry to be ambiguous. No, I wasn't referring to any recent case. I think the current WMF approach to child protection is good and thankfully it remains a very tiny and rare problem. Speaking in general, I think that the WMF should step in more aggressively when we have cases of volunteers being harassed. Getting involved in bans in areas relating to POV pushing and whatnot would be unwise, as those are things about which the community has great expertise and that system seems to be working relatively well. But I would like to see more aggressive enforcement of the terms of service, particularly "Engaging in harassment, threats, stalking, spamming, or vandalism".--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:42, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Aah ok, yes that I agree on. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 13:50, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
One problem I think we will continue to have in that regard unfortunately is when there seems to be some sort of organizational involvement. Fair Game (Scientology) is happily rather old now, and Scientology's reputation in general is so low now that negative coverage is the norm, but other groups and fanatical individuals associated with some of those groups, particularly of the kind which reasonably fit the old 1970's definition of "cult", are going to I think continue to be sources for major problems for individual editors dealing with related content and the project in general. John Carter (talk) 23:44, 9 December 2014 (UTC)


User: Jimbo Wales, if you are saying that the WMF should be more involved in cases of harassment, I strongly agree in particular if you mean off-wiki harassment, such as is being seen against some of the active editors of Gamergate controversy. I realize that case is now in arbitration, but the ArbCom can only act against editors, not against off-wiki chatters, and that editors who are being harassed off-wiki may need the legal and investigative resources of the WMF. I think that the community does a reasonably good job with respect to on-wiki harassment (for which editors are IBAN'd or banned), stalking, spamming, and vandalism, although the community can use help. I agree as to actual threats, that the WMF should assist law enforcement. I agree that the WMF can do more with respect to off-wiki harassment. Robert McClenon (talk) 20:28, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Indeed. I think that the outing and abuse faced by Ryulong in particular was dreadful, even while I think his editing and acceptance of funding from one side of the debate was deeply inappropriate. The whole thing makes me sad because, at the end of the day, I'd like people to communicate in a thoughtful and respectful way without any pressures - neither threats nor pay but a pure commitment to a neutral explanation of the world.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:36, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Robert, thanks for your thoughts on this. For those who are unaware, I head up the Community Advocacy team at the WMF, and I've been a Wikipedian for years... since, like, Jimmy was a little boy, I think. I'm also one of the longest term employees at the WMF. My team is the one that's charged with liaising with law enforcement in the (thankfully rare) situation where that is needed. We also work closely with the legal team as guardians of the privacy policy. It's a bit of an odd balancing act - on the one hand, as someone who has been subject to off-wiki harassment myself, I want to throw the book, the bookcase, and possibly the wall at someone who subjects users to that. On the other, I want to be certain that we're guarding our ideals for privacy and not over-disclosing to law enforcement, which can subject editors in some countries to very real possibility of harm (economic, social, judicial...). Where we see evidence that users are being actually harassed off-wiki in ways that go beyond simple internet trolling (not to downplay the seriousness of that - it's often very vitriolic and very personal), we have worked with users to collect enough evidence to build a case to take to law enforcement, and have been somewhat successful in getting the attention of investigators. Frequently, though, it falls on us to build the case because we are the ones with access to the necessary tools and the domain knowledge.
So, as with most things, it's a balancing act - we're balancing resources (my team is small - just five people, and hiring one more now), time, priorities, and values. I'm delighted that over the last several years the appetite for this type of work seems to be picking up. General Counsel Geoff Brigham and his legal team are top notch in defending our users, and Geoff is not afraid to go garrulously into areas where others might fear to tread. He's been a strong support for defending the community over the last few years that I've worked for him. Lila takes her commitment to the site's editors very seriously and is fiercely protective of you all, as Sue was before her.
But the folks doing the harassing are frequently very smart. They use proxies, VPNs, and throw-away email accounts, and layers upon layers of protection. It's very difficult to find them, sometimes, without subpoena power, which the government has wisely decided to withhold from me. :-) My team is very smart too... we've got specialized tools that James builds for us, strong support from Erik and Damon and the product and engineering teams, and we're persistent.
I say all of this to say that simply because it doesn't often look like we're doing much, it doesn't mean we aren't. In some cases, the best we can do is collect data and build files. In others, we take a more active role. But we're very interested in knowing about what's happening. If you find yourself in a position where I should know about harassment, please reach out to me. My email address is, and I've got email enabled so you can email me through the wiki as well. You can also call the office at any point and ask for me. Philippe Beaudette, Wikimedia Foundation (talk) 21:25, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
  • I don't know how involved you are with things at Wikia these days, Jimmy, but if you mean what you've said about dealing with harassment, might I suggest you apply pressure on the relevant people to do something about this shitlist? Not that I'm going to lose any sleep over my name being on a shitlist (I've had worse, and I'm sure I'll get worse in the future), but I'm sure the irony of hosting a shitlist of Wikipedians on your for-profit wikifarm is not lost on the page's creators. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 02:05, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
    • And maybe it would be possible to also do something about the guy email bombing a bunch of us every day in all caps and linking to nazi images and crap. (talk) 02:24, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
Jimbo, I think it would be a very good idea if the WMF were more involved in off-Wiki harassment. It's something I've had happen to myself recently, all because I blocked a user for breaking Wikipedia's policies. I've dealt with it now, although when I looked on Wikipedia for support for off-Wiki harassment, if I'm honest I felt that the support could be improved by making the WMF more involved.
I've also looked at the list @HJ Mitchell: has mentioned above, again I don't know how you are involved at Wikia nowadays, but I think that list really needs to be dealt with and if you could please apply some pressure it would be appreciated :)--5 albert square (talk) 03:43, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
What is it that you guys are referring to as harassment? WP:HA#NOT "Neither is tracking a user's contributions for policy violations (see above); the contribution logs exist for editorial and behavioral oversight. Unfounded accusations of harassment may be considered a serious personal attack and dealt with accordingly." Every edit someone makes is public domain. Being held accountable for your edits whether by Arbitration or by outside collection is not harassment.
I wonder if the Citogenesis causing the unfounded labeling of a group of people as "harassers" is, in and of itself, a form of harassment... Maybe it would be worthwhile for WP to worry about the strength of sources that may cause WP to violate it's own policy? Maybe in articles that label a group of people so strongly, there should be much greater scrutiny in sources such as to avoid the possibility for Citogenesis being the foundation for the claims. Do you guys think opinion pieces should be sufficiently reliable to name anyone, much less a group of people as a harasser? I don't think so.... TyTyMang (talk) 04:57, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
  • For the record, as far as I can tell, Ryulong was outed by someone who has a hate boner for Ironholds and is unaffiliated with both GamerGate and 8chan. Seems he only brought up Ryulong because someone brought up Ironholds in a discussion on ED. In my experience, people on ED who focus a lot on Wikipedia editors tend to be either or current or former Wikipedia editors themselves and Ironholds has no shortage of haters. The person was also obsessed with Milli Vanilli if that helps.--The Devil's Advocate tlk. cntrb. 06:28, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

I give up

We, that is, the peasant that is me, appreciate your intervention in restoring a rubbish article about rubbish without sources or any kind of comprehensibility. We also appreciate your facilitation of the co-opting of the encylopaedia by dregs from the region of the Internet that is called Lower Slobbovia. Thank you, sir. We do appreciate it. We do appreciate all your work in making the encylopaedia you created look like the domain of foolish lunatics. Praise God, and farewell. RGloucester 20:06, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

I wish you well in life.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:10, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
No you don't. Nor do you care how much time your 'volunteers' have to put in to try and make the project better. Unilateral overruling numerous editors and a month long merge discussion for an article mirrored by the Neo-Nazi Metapedia is beyond the pale. All you've shown is just how much you don't give a fuck. Dave Dial (talk) 20:14, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
WP:NPA applies to you as much as anyone else. I really do in fact care only about the volunteers who are spending time on the project, and I would like to see a wider discussion. What's the harm? Nothing, unless you care only that your view prevail - but WIkipedia is an encyclopedia, not a battleground, so insulting me or anyone else isn't really appropriate. It would be much better if, instead, you joined the discussion and helped me to bring in a wider group of editors to review the decision. My specific concern has been expressed by other editors who are not "right wing" by any stretch of the imagination that there is a difference between the meme an the actual ideas. Perhaps they are wrong - wider discussion by more editors will help us to determine that.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:20, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
For the rest of us who have this page on their watchlist and wonder what is happening here, some sort of clarification of what is being discussed would be more than welcome. John Carter (talk) 20:17, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
There was a controversial redirect which took place after a fairly evenly balanced !vote and I've reopened the question for further discussion with a wider audience. I have no (strong) position on whether the redirect is the right thing or not. But I do believe that whenever there is a dramatic move like this, it deserves a longer thoughtful discussion with the wider community.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:23, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Specifically, on Talk:Cultural Marxism#Merger proposal. From what I can see, RGloucester is upset that a merge discussion that he extensively took part in and closed himself was reopened for more discussion by Jimbo. --Onorem (talk) 20:40, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Agreed the discussion was gaining more oppose opinions before it was closed, I myself would also oppose the decision if it were still open. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 20:45, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Seriously? You gave a decent speech about "toxic atmosphere" and the like at Wikimania 2014 (well, at least the part I watched online -- mostly just read a transcript.) And you reply to a frustrated editor with snark like that? Pots and kettles come to mind. NE Ent 20:20, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
What snark? I do wish him well in life. If he's so angry about an extension of a discussion that he wants to leave, well, that's ok.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:21, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Oh, you needn't worry, Your Majesty. As I've said elsewhere, I'm the type that submits to authority, and appreciate your most gracious direction. I shall merely diverge from this topic, and return to doing whatever else a servant such as I must do. Perhaps I shall go find a grate, and clean-out some spilled ashes. RGloucester 20:22, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Ah, there's the snark. Even so, I wish you well in life. The attitude that you project on me doesn't exist at all, but if makes you feel better to pretend to it, i will not try to stop you.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:24, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Believe me sir, I don't project it on you. I truly favour it. In fact, I recently proposed that we return to the days of appointment of administrators by the Crown. One might think I was being a bit absurd, but I'm stating what's true, and nothing else. As it is, I've got some grates to clean-out. Thank you dearly. RGloucester 20:26, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Yes, I am a huge advocate of it. I think that all editors should be treated with thoughtfulness and respect, and that controversial decisions should always be open to thoughtful reconsideration, particularly by bringing in the wider community for review. I thank everyone for their hard work, including the significant number of people who are good editors and objected to this move, AND including the significant number of people who are good editors and supported this move. My view is that we should work together to find an appropriate compromise position that everyone can agree is better than what went before - this is the philosophical core value behind the idea of "NPOV".--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:32, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
(edit conflict × 6)Meaning always depends on context; they're not an inherent quality of the words themselves. If an acquaintance you have good rapport tells you they're moving away to a different city, "I wish you well in life," is a nice thing to say. In this context, it comes off as curt smug condescension -- oh, I'm above the fray and your petty little concerns (here's a nice pat on the head.) Possibly, in the context of a longer comment, it wouldn't be so snarky; unfortunately I can't give an example as (like John Carter) I don't know the context of what led to this. NE Ent 20:30, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
In this context, it is very much the former and not the latter. I do understand your point, but no snark was intended by me. If RGloucester is so upset that we are going to have a discussion for 7 days that he will quit the project, then I have no interest in making him unhappy. He's a valued editor and I respect his autonomy - but not more than I respect the importance of not shutting down discussions when there is a genuine controversy.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:34, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Jimbo Wales, I truly agree with it. Ochilov (talk) 20:37, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

There is nothing uncivil about wishing someone well in life when they decide to take their ball and go home. Those assuming smugness or bad faith are projecting their own cynicism. You can wish someone well even if they disagree with you. This is getting silly. Chillum 20:42, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

I could have been more expressive, for sure, and people might not have misinterpreted me. I'm sorry for that. I was confronted with someone angry and I only wanted to defuse that anger with goodwill.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:47, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm not, and haven't been "angry", sir. Please enjoy your article. As I said, I shall return to cleaning grates. However, it is hard to return to cleaning grates when one is speaking of me down the corridor. Whilst it is certainly within your prerogative to do so, I do wish I could petition you to halt such conservation, so that I can carry on with my work. RGloucester 20:51, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I am happy to discontinue. I wonder if, perchance, you happen to have ever read the satirical book Fuck, Yes! by Wing F. Fing. I read it many years ago but just picked it up again recently. The persona you have adopted is remarkably similar to that of Bruno in the book.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:29, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
As if you could believe that a person such as me would read such an obscene piece of literature! You shame me. If there is one thing I have, it is my propriety. Sadly, it seems most people in this present world lack it. RGloucester 21:36, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Don't worry about the spilled ashes, RGloucester, already a grate article. Martinevans123 (talk) 21:26, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Jimbo you have to understand some editors here have an agenda to get you to leave Wikipedia as they despise you. This has been going on for months now and every comment you make may it be good or bad has been an excuse to continue it. I wonder... what if an admin had reopened the discussion for further comment? Would the result have been the same? - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 20:55, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Well, as much as I would like them to be happy, I'm afraid that it's very unlikely that I will be going anywhere anytime soon. I've been on the Internet a long time, so I'm used to such things. I'm pretty easy to disagree with about various things, of course, as I'm a person with opinions. But I'm a pretty difficult person to actually despise, and so I have a kind of quiet admiration for those rare few who can work themselves up to that. :-)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:29, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Glad to hear that @Jimbo Wales: :D--5 albert square (talk) 21:53, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
@Knowledgekid87: as an admin I can guarantee you that it wouldn't have. @Jimbo Wales: I have picked up on the same sort of thing that Knowledgekid87 has picked up on, in fact I think a fair few editors will have picked up on it. There are probably some watching every edit/comment you make and will use it to continue regardless--5 albert square (talk) 21:12, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
While it may be true that some editors are anti-Jimbo no matter what he does, it's unfair and dismissive to put Robert and I into that category based on nothing. I have always respected Jimbo, even when I disagree with him. That I do not respect this decision is obvious, as it seems Jimbo has been in email contact with someone and has not even bothered to read the Merge discussion before restoring the page and declaring more discussion needed by fiat. If other editors don't have a problem with Jimbo's secret discussions and acting as King, that's their problem. I most definitely do. Dave Dial (talk) 21:28, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I actually read the merge discussion quite keenly. It was not so one-sided that it would be appropriate for someone who is a self-described Marxist, and who opened the discussion and pushed a particular point of view during that discussion, to also be the person who closed it rather contentiously. There is no harm, and much good, from taking a pause and having a further discussion.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:32, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Well, if you read the Merge discussion, you would know there is no such thing as "Cultural Marxism", except in the eyes if fringe extremist and Neo-Nazis. One would think a self-described Marxist would be a fine candidate to close the discussion, since they would know all about Marxism. One would also think that the off-site canvassing would play a role in any decision to continue the never-ending flood of [[WP:SPA|SPAs]. Of course the 8chan 'discssuion' was closed down, but here is the saved archive grab. Where even most of the "Gamergate" supporters were leary of the /pol/ radicals call to action to defend an obvious Nazi canard. Now we have an article that matches the Neo-Nazi Metapedia. You have to take the "-"(dash) out of the URL, since the Neo-Nazi site is blacklisted here.
Screen capture of our illustrious two websites, Wikipedia and Metapedia
— Preceding unsigned comment added by DD2K (talkcontribs) 22:06, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
That's a very very unlikely reading of the discussion I have to say. It's very easy (but not very persuasive) to scream "Neo-Nazi" but much harder to produce an actual coherent argument that will be persuasive to people without an agenda.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:30, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Every Wikipedia post, like most communication, has three components: the intent of the sender, the content itself, and the perception of the readers. Based on my edit counts and some heuristics, I'd estimate I've likely read ten thousand conflicts on Wikipedia noticeboards since following a watchlist request for volunteers six years ago. The overwhelming majority of those were not caused by malice so much as miscommunication, which is quite easy given the limitations of text and wide variety of cultures from which Wikipedia draws its contributors. I doubt neither your intent nor that you truly wish RGloucester well. But surely you wish all 135,824 active users well, too, but you're not going to be posting "I wish you well" on all their talk pages, right? Regardless of some "treat me like every editor" ideal you may have, you are THE FOUNDER and any perceived criticism of a volunteers editor's effort is going to have a disparate impact compared anyone else. So when an apparently very frustrated editor starts a thread as RGloucester did, I'd suggest as much focus should go into the likely perception of your words as your intent in posting them. In some cases, and perhaps this was one, no immediate answer is the best one. When I choose my wiki user name I made "Ent" (as in the Tolkien creatures) the key part of it because I became (and remain) convinced that far too much inadvertent stress among editors is caused simply by folks being too hasty. NE Ent 21:35, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

If I post "Thank you for your kind guidance" would you take that as snark? I hope not, because I do, in fact, thank you for your kind guidance.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:37, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
No, of course not ;) You're welcome. NE Ent 21:46, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Ah, the curse of the missing vocal cues. Typed text is missing so much context that it is extremely open to interpretation/misinterpretation, and it IS easy to project your own attitudes/expectations into the underlying meaning. I find it is always best to first assume the positive attitude unless proven otherwise. I definitely would not have interpreted I wish you well. as Don't let the door hit you in the arse on the way out. but rather I am sad that you feel you have to leave. Nyth83 (talk) 21:55, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
When someone posts something heavily sarcastic on your talk page the best thing to do is to wish them well. How else do you respond? Launch a personal attack? That is not wise. --Mrjulesd (talk) 22:23, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
All this thread does is serve further to exemplify why it is that the best thing Jimbo could do here at en-WP is in fact refrain from doing or saying anything. Like it or loathe it, the "god-king" status has an impact that is more often than not disproportionate to what ever the event may be. I wouldn't wish the situation on anyone but it is the situation and, sorry, many of comments that you (Jimbo) make seem to my mind to be inflammatory, patronising, "civilly" insulting or, yes, politely snarky. Perhaps I can get away with that and, yes, I've done worse but we are not equal and it takes a whole room of smoke and mirrors to make out that we are. Work behind the scenes through WMF and perhaps reposition yourself at meta where, coincidentally, by doing so you would perhaps remove a fair amount of perceived systemic bias given your global status. People who talk of the likes of Eric Corbett being something of a protected species are missing the elephant in the room. - Sitush (talk) 01:27, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
I can't speak for Jimbo, but if I were in his position I would consider it an obligation to enforce the integrity of wikipedia in extreme cases like this, in spite of any disproportionate controversy that may possibly result from my actions. This seemed like a clear cut case of administrator abuse to me (I'm a centrist; no bias accusations please). Most of the small handful of people who know about this controversy will forget about it within a week or month. The article, on the other hand, would be lost forever; the knowledge therein stolen from innumerable potential readers. Think of the bigger picture, and moreover, consider these overreactions and what they implicate. LokiiT (talk) 02:55, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
I feel that Jimbo has the right to edit WP appropriately, but people unhappy about his actions should not approach him in this manner. I know it is easy to get over-emotional when dealing with Wikipedia, but generally this hinders the process rather than helping. ----Mrjulesd (talk) 14:52, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Rgloucester I really don't understand why this is so upsetting to you. Is extending the discussion of a merge beyond one month for an article that is over 8 years old on a topic that is probably older than most of us really so insulting to you? Why do you believe your actions are above reproach? Do you believe that your actions are in the name of some greater good? So maybe you feel slighted by the work you put in being undone, but did you think about all of the work that you were undoing when you pushed for and put into action the redirect? Do you also believe that actions an admin makes are not up for further discussion?

And another thing. Any negative connotation that is "felt" in Jimbo's comment is purely the assertion of the prejudgement of the individual reader. Any non-involved person would see that as not only a neutral statement, but as a very standard, if not cliche neutral statement. It seems there's a lot of sentiment against Jimbo here just for the reason to be against him. TyTyMang (talk) 02:35, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

" Any non-involved person would see..." Hmm. That could well be taken as a slap at anyone who in good faith wondered if Jimbo might be getting in a little dig, but then saw his explanation. See how easily such misunderstandings can arise?
The site's emphasis on superficial politeness has raised unctuous dissembling to an art form. We've all seen lots of comments where people got in their well-crafted (but very polite!) sarcastic remarks, twisting the knife by concluding with "cheers" or the like. It's so common that one can hardly blame people for seeing it even when it's not intended.
To me the ongoing corrosiveness of such discourse is a much more important issue than using bad words or occasional name-calling. (Which is more admirable in a way, because it's at least honest.) I have no idea how we can solve it. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 03:34, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

I never edited Wikipedia, but someone really just needs to make the point that the cultural marxism article is a full 7 years older than the one they wanted to merge it into. In theory the merger should be in the opposite direction if it had to happen.Also the conspiracy theory article is only like a year old and was originally suggested to be merged back into the frankfurt school article.*/*/ Wikipedia is not the place for RGloucester agenda, especially when cultural marxist and cultural marxism were terms coined by marxists and are used in academic papers discussing the subject to this day. The assertion that because he is a marxist he is the sole authority on the matter is as ridiculous as a self described national socialist trying to edit and delete the neo-nazi page. I believe RGloucester should be barred from editing on the subject any further, I would also like to thank Jimbo wales for how he handled thisJust needed to be said (talk) 12:38, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

I don't have an "agenda". In fact, it is clear that the people with agenda are elsewhere. You will not find the term "Cultural Marxism" referring to any school of thought, in any scholarly journals. You may find "cultural Marxism" as a descriptive phrase, however, that phrase does not describe a school of thought. Instead, we have people who are conflating 21st century American liberalism with 1930s Marxism, and they are failing at it. The Frankfurt School, for example, is known in mainstream scholarship for their critique of pop culture, which they as manufactured, and the media, which the mass media, which they viewed as capitalist instruments of ideological control. To quote Mr Adorno and Mr Horkheimer in their Dialectic of Enlightenment, which has been mentioned:

The ruthless unity in the culture industry is evidence of what will happen in politics. Marked differentiations such as those of A and B films, or of stories in magazines in different price ranges, depend not so much on subject matter as on classifying, organising, and labelling consumers. Something is provided for all so that none may escape; the distinctions are emphasised and extended. The public is catered for with a hierarchical range of mass-produced products of varying quality, thus advancing the rule of complete quantification. Everybody must behave (as if spontaneously) in accordance with his previously determined and indexed level, and choose the category of mass product turned out for his type. Consumers appear as statistics on research organisation charts, and are divided by income groups into red, green, and blue areas; the technique is that used for any type of propaganda.

In other words, for Horkheimer and Adorno, mass media is a system whereby the liberal ruling class enforces a balkanisation of the proletariat into different ethnic, racial, religious categories. These categories are used to create markets for goods, which are then target at each individual market demographic. The media provides "something for all so that none may escape", meaning that it creates endless categories, and that if one doesn't adhere to the category that one is placed in, the result will be that one won't be able to access the goods one needs.

This is facilitated by screen media, because it presents an image of a liveness, without any indication of its origin. When one watches a film or a television programme, what is behind the screen? Where did this picture or programme come from? How was it made? Merely from looking at the screen, one cannot tell. This is because film naturally hides the nature of its construction. It compresses days of filming into one hour. It only allows one perspective, that of the camera, meaning that one can never see what is behind the camera. And who, of course, is behind the camera? As we know, it is the market-driven ruling class who desires nothing more than to sell its goods to the demographised proletariat. As Walter Benjamin says, the "aura" of the work is lost. Its historical existence, the material circumstances of its creation, they disappear. Unlike with a painting, where one can see the brushstrokes, see the blending of pigment, with a film, one can never access the material circumstances of the original. The television programme or film or radio programme is separate from its material reality, concealing, unlike a painting, its origin.
The culture industry seeks to enforce liberal conformism through balkanisation. Dividing people into artificial categories, through market demographisation, facilitates the continued dominance of the ruling class, and also the fracturing of the identities of humans. Something is provided for all so that none can escape. One must be part of a category, however artificial, for if one isn't, if one is merely a human, one is of no use to the ruling class. In this, the Frankfurt School stands diametrically opposed to "multiculturalism", and to "political correctness". For them, this rigid balkanisation of conformity is the worst possible end result, because it makes revolution nigh impossible, as Benjamin wrote. This is the danger of mechanical reproduction of media. We've now moved into digital reproduction, and this is all the more dangerous. Regardless, for Marxists, especially for the Frankfurt School, ethnic, religious, gender, racial distinctions are constructed by the ruling class to support their material interests. Marxists do not believe in using these identities, which are viewed as false. Multiculturalism cannot be supported, because it posits an acceptance of a balkanised proletariat dominated by a capitalist media.
This is what mainstream scholarship says on the subject, and this is what the Frankfurt School themselves say. There is no overarching school of "Cultural Marxism" that spans the large part of the 20th century, and links multiple theorists who never even met each other. There is a descriptive phrase "cultural Marxism", which is merely descriptive. It has fallen largely out of use in recent years, and was never a common classification. It simply means "Marxism as applied to culture". It does not imply a school of thought, a unified ideology, or even a linkage between the different theorists. It is a broad descriptive phrase, similar to the phrase "political Islam". That phrase does not imply a school of thought. It only implies "Islam as applied to politics". There are many different theorists and varieties of "Islam applied to politics". They are not inherently linked by anything other than that they deal with politics and Islam. For this reason, this whole debacle is reminiscent of the now gone Jews and Communism article. Spurious linkages of anything a Jew has ever said on communism do not make an article. Likewise, spurious linkages of anything a Marxist has said on culture does not make an article. There is no school of thought called "Cultural Marxism". The "Frankfurt School" has no resemblance to the conspiracy theory. However, people with no sense of verification or who do not actually read any book they cite as using the phrase "cultural Marxism" will synthesise the conspiracy with descriptive uses of "cultural Marxism" to posit a legitimate school of thought. If one falls into that trap, that's one's fault. RGloucester 15:40, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
"Marxists do not believe in using these identities, which are viewed as false." After you're done arguing this issue, I wonder if you'd be willing to push the same line of reasoning in the Gamergate controversy article. That article is also being controlled by the "dominant" media, though this time the roles may be reversed.
Also glad you're not dumping wiki so easily. I do think that your arguments can be a bit hard to follow and/or easy to misinterpret, but you do make good points. Maybe you could dumb it down for some of us in the future.TyTyMang (talk) 02:59, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
American "liberals" and "conservatives" are different sides of the same liberal tuppence. Something is provided for all, so that none can escape: conformity through difference. Conformity through différance? RGloucester 05:04, 9 December 2014 (UTC)


I prefer to stay out of the politics of Wikipedia as much as possible as bureaucracy gives me a headache, but I thought I should contact you regarding something which occurred to me lately. It seems that sometimes, "controversies" arise surrounding massive edits of certain pages or outright deletion/merges and the answer to this is usually that there has been a "long discussion" concerning the subject ergo the changes are supposedly justified. However, this seems fallacious to me; the people most likely to enter the discussion are those who are unsatisfied with the article and thus are demanding sweeping changes to it. The people opposed to such changes, meanwhile, usually remain unaware that there is a "discussion" on the article's content until it is quite too late since they don't see a need to check on the talk page of an article they are satisfied with (or even check regularly on the article). Therefore, the "discussion" is likely one sided, especially when people are trying to drive narratives instead of exposing facts. Let me explain my overly wordy thoughts with a dumbed down example:

Imagine you have an article on dogs. Dogs see the article on dogs and think "This is okay." and don't visit it again or go to the talk page. Cats see the article and think "This article fails to mention that dogs are evil!", head to the talk page and begin a "discussion" on what the "Dogs" article should be which lasts several days. Meanwhile, dogs remain blissfully unaware that there is an apparent controversy on the "dogs" article. So eventually, cats create their own article on dogs and replace the article with their version, "dogs: slobbery demons". Now dogs notice it and are opposed to it, to which the cats reply "We discussed it for several days" and start requesting protection and sanctions and what not, claiming that the dogs are "biased" and that they "refused" to engage in discussion.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that many articles, especially on politically, philosophically, morally or religiously charged topics, will get targeted by people trying to give them a slant and legitimizing their actions through "dummy" discussions. To me this seems like a case of what you call "WP: GAME" to try and make biased articles seem to be the result of legitimate discussions on their content. How to fix this is beyond me; placing tags on the article's header is quite frankly ineffective yet it seems to be the only way to do it at this point. Of course, this is a difficulty to be expected with a popular enterprise such as Wikipedia; the people who get deeply involved in it represent only a tiny fraction of the people using it. Yet I do believe there could be improvements on this front. Akesgeroth (talk) 23:24, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

I Completely agree with Akesgeroth. I've seen so much WP:Game lately that I felt compelled to register and become active on WP. Hopefully my newness won't have an impact on the validity of my points. One of the more concerning maters I've seen recently is the self perceived infallibility of some of the Admins, as seen in the topic directly above this one regarding Cultural Marxism. If the admin in that situation was truly WP:Neutral the reversal of the merge wouldn't have been an issue, much less the tantrum that ensued. This also shows another problem, an admin has the power to make sweeping changes on a whim. Or more specifically, a bureaucratically maneuvered whim. The controversy over the Cultural Marxism merge fortunately brought about the attention to reopen discussion, but how many other articles have been impacted quietly? Just as I have done over the last decade, the overwhelmingly vast majority browsing WP aren't going to invest the effort to push for an article's correction. Especially when they discover the extensive bureaucratic process for making changes.
Jimbo, I know that you do like to be neutral about most everything, but doing your own research doesn't make you biased. In fact sometimes it requires you do this to really know if an article is represented neutrally and correctly. I would really appreciate if more of the admins/arbitrators/founder..(s) would do their own independent research regarding some of the more controversial topics. In a recent controversial topic, the position I have taken has been grossly misrepresented. The problem with this particular topic is the fact that the media at large is involved in the controversy/conspiracy. So all the so called WP:RS are really too biased to be reliable. It's very similar to the analogy that Akesgeroth used where the cats paint the picture of all dogs being "slobbery demons." But the dogs can't refute the claim because all of the "Reliable" sources are written by cats and all of the sources written by dogs are deemed "unreliable" by cats. In a case like this where sourcing guidelines fail, what should be the right course of action to take? Here are some options: Leave the unbalanced article up, form special-case RS guidelines, take down the article until the conflict dies down enough to have a neutral discussion. Whatever the case, I feel it is a little unfair for one group to be able to label another without the labeled group being able to properly defend itself.TyTyMang (talk) 01:36, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
We are often too quick to assume that media sources are reliable for more than the fact that their respective authors have the opinions expressed in them. Straight news reporting from reputable agencies or prestigious newsrooms is one thing, and it's generally quite reliable, but some topics are mainly covered in op-eds, editorials, blog posts, and the like. Even if these tend to take a predominant line on some matter of cultural, philosophical, or political dispute, that does not mean that there is the equivalent of a settled scholarly or scientific consensus. If someone's view on such an issue diverges from a predominant line represented in the media, that does not make it the equivalent of fringe science or pseudoscience, where the divergence is from a robust scientific consensus.
An unpopular or minority viewpoint on a matter of genuine cultural, philosophical, or political debate is not analogous to, say, Intelligent Design or Holocaust denial; and policies aimed at protecting Wikipedia from getting clogged up with the viewpoints of, say, Holocaust denialists, where there is a clear scholarly consensus based on mountains of physical, documentary, and testimonial evidence, should not be used to insist on favoring what might, at a particular time, be a popular view with commentators on, say, a current political debate. As long as we all keep this in mind, the problem should be reduced.
As I said on the talk page for the Cultural Marxism page, we should also consider stepping away from articles on topics that push our political and emotional buttons. Any time I feel I am striking a blow in some culture war by my edits to a Wikipedia article, I am likely making it harder for Wikipedia to have a neutral, properly informative article. Metamagician3000 (talk) 02:16, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
I too am in full agreement with the observations and views expressed in this section. We should not be replacing articles about Dogs with articles about the Dogs' conspiracy theory. I remind registered editors that the Arbitration Committee elections are closing later today, so remember to vote ASAP. Regards, Wbm1058 (talk) 14:12, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Gaming the system has become normal and not limited to editing-for-money but includes political influences as well. We all heard of big media reports on CIA, Vatican and other political interests having been exposed for making extensive edits. The intelligence community has pretty much overran Wikipedia since 2002-2003, when retired military/intelligence personnel were hired by different governments as part-time editors. (The Israeli Information Ministry has an entire division that hires multilingual students for that purpose so they can cover Wikipedias in various languages even). They soon created a "brotherhood" where each editor is just one text/phone call away. Naturally for geometric progression, they soon started supporting each other's nomination for adminships, and the rest is history as they say. Here is one such staggering example of Dutch intelligence/paid interests' abuse of Wikipedia: the main article (as they lack manpower so they have to stay focused on main articles) on Bosnia and Herzegovina states its regime as a republic though its own Constitution in Article I.1 says it's not a republic any more! Now that's how Wikipedia can and indeed has become a tool for advancing even geopolitical agendas, not just political or financial interests as noted by others. This is highlighted by the fact that the above example (thread) has been censored from this very Talk page of Jimbo Wales. So it's safe to assume for all practical purposes that Wikipedia has been hijacked by political and financial interests. (talk) 16:22, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Hmm, I see. Per Wikipedia:Banning policy § Appeal of Arbitration Committee decision, Any arbitration decision may be appealed to Jimbo Wales. While it is not unusual for him to consider an appeal, it is exceedingly unusual for him to overturn such a decision. An appeal should be lodged at his user talk page within one week of the ArbCom decision. This is an English Wikipedia policy. Yet the next edit, within the same minute, by an editor who is !not Jimbo, reverted this appeal which is supported by policy. Shouldn't we wait for Jimbo to rule on the appeal, or was this a re-posting of an appeal that Jimbo had previously ruled on? Wbm1058 (talk) 16:49, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
I think this is important to get right. An appeal to Jimbo was filed, per policy, see here. I see something of an edit war over this appeal. Some of the reverting edit summaries are labeling the appeal as vandalism. Wow, that edit war is going on for a long time, we are way past WP:3RR territory. An argument is made, if you go back far enough to look, "as a banned user you do not have the right to post to any page". This seems to me to be against policy. The ban was an ArbCom decision and policy clearly states that any such decision may be appealed to Jimbo. Can anyone provide me with a link to Jimbo's ruling on this appeal? Wbm1058 (talk) 17:30, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
That sounds like a fair summary of the case, I'd say. There's an additional problem though: believe it or not, but the English Wiki has a "power to move mountains" in those mini-nations of the Balkans. For example, admins of the Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian and Serbo-Croatian Wikis keep pace with the English Wiki. Add to it the fact that, due to wars of 1990s, the Internet came quite late to those nations. Most Wikis there have a handful of admins, the Bosnian Wiki has pretty much just 1 active admin (believe it or not) and he has several accounts. So you can imagine the exposure that Google's top returns like Wikipedia get there. The level of belief those unsuspecting peoples have in what they read on page 1 of Google returns is absurd. So he who controls the main page on Bosnia and Herzegovina, controls pretty much everything else that matters, in the knowledge department there. Forget what the Constitution says, go by what the English Wiki says. Not sure if I should laugh or cry... (talk) 00:17, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
And no, it doesn't seem like Jimbo has ruled on the case, yet. (talk) 00:19, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Akesgeroth, my reply has three parts. (1) If a controversial article is important to you, then you may wish to have it on your watchlist. (2) Abiogenesis and macroevolution are emotionally appealing to humans (including scientists) who wish to avoid responsibility to a Creator. Each one of us can make an impartial examination of the evidence. (Proverbs 2:4) (3) Some media outlets refer to Santa Claus as a real person. (John 12:43)
Wavelength (talk) 16:05, 7 December 2014 (UTC)


It being award Jimbo time:

[redacted per request] -- Alanscottwalker (talk) 17:05, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

Please give your opinion and reasons with citations for reverting a close. "More discussion" isn't a good reason in itself. You should try, at least, to answer the question, why Wikipedia should have an article at that title ["Cultural Marxism"] when apparently no encyclopedia does. "No deadline" applies to you too - take your time to educate yourself - the article history is not going anywhere. You may share this with RGloucester because they should not have participated and closed. Alanscottwalker (talk) 17:22, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Perhaps the better question to ask, is why Wikipedia should have an article at the title ["Frankfurt School conspiracy theory"]. Does any encyclopedia have an article at that title either? Wbm1058 (talk) 17:43, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
That's not a better question, that's a different question - and one does not answer a question with a question. Alanscottwalker (talk) 17:49, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Ultimately, if I were making the decisions around here, we would have neither. However, this depends on how we view Wikipedia on a conceptual level. I can see arguments for inclusion of such an article on the conspiracy theory, as it is true that the conspiracy theory has been discussed in reliable sources. However, I'm not sure we should be giving air to such theories. RGloucester 17:51, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
"Neither" may be a reasonable option. Maybe both should be forked off to a new project, "Wikiblog" or "Wikieditorials". – Wbm1058 (talk) 18:00, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps he noticed that a self-described cultural marxist was trying to drag that hateful ideology back into the shadows and keep normal people from learning about it, and decided that Wikipedia's ability to be used as a source of information should not be compromised by people trying to push an agenda - such as marxists. (talk) 19:13, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Honestly, I would have also considered reverting the close. RGloucester was heavily involved in the discussion, and then, in spite of a seemingly close decision, was also the one who closed it. It needed to be closed by someone uninvolved in the discussion. If there were no complaints this could be left as a questionable call that didn't do any harm, but when people start complaining about the decision it makes sense to revisit it and try for an independent close. I'm not sure that Jimbo should have been the one to reopen it, but that's more a political issue - I'm concerned about how things will now go if the final decision is to reinstate the redirect. But that's a problem for later. - Bilby (talk) 20:45, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Then an administrator should have closed the original Merge discussion and evaluated the discussion. Which was open for more than a month. The consensus was obvious, based on policy and reliable sourcing and not !votes. What should not have been done was unilateral reverting the page when it was protected, and declaring a 'new' discussion was needed. What is wrong with the already present month long discussion? Do you call what has happened on the page since Jimbo's actions to be in the best interests of the project? Have you read the so-called discussion that has ensued? It should be an embarrassment, in truth. But that's just my opinion. Dave Dial (talk) 21:03, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
The consensus was far from obvious and the issue quite properly deserved another look. Efforts to campaign to shut down more discussion are almost never the right thing to do, and raise eyebrows of experienced wikipedians concerned about POV pushing. In this case, we had someone who raised the issue, strongly campaigned for it, and closed the discussion in a highly contentious manner. That deserves a wider look.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 04:39, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
I just want to add, are Admins supposed to ignore all the off-site canvassing? Or what's the policy with that issue concerning Merge and AfD discussions? Dave Dial (talk) 21:13, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Admins revert closes all the time. An admin's ability to close a discussion is not a final word on the subject. If one does not treat their decisions as sacred then they will not be so upset when they get reverted. Editing on a wiki = getting reverted sometimes, even for admins. This is being made a big deal of exactly because it is Jimbo. Chillum 21:11, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Actually no. At least not by me. I would just trout whomever for reopening with an entirely uninformed "more discussion". Alanscottwalker (talk) 23:57, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
I am commenting on the OPs rationale for the "trouting" rather than whether the specific article should exist. Jimbo is trouted here because no other encyclopedia has an article about the topic. Well, Wikipedia is not just another encyclopedia. We have 4,665,978 articles at the moment, and even if some should be deleted (I work on that), most meet our minimum standards. We have vastly more articles than any other encyclopedia, so the implied notion that we should only have articles here that other encyclopedias have articles about is wrong. Completely wrong. Wikipedia's budget, and the goals of our current fundraising campaign, do not include purchasing railroad tank cars full of ink, nor levelling forests to produce the paper upon which to print this massive encyclopedia. We have our own notability standards, and do not accept the standards of paper encyclopedias in any way. A more lengthy discussion is usually a good thing, unless consensus is crystal clear. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 05:02, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
No. Your comment is non-responsive to the trouting. Apart from the issue that merging is not a matter of notability but of organization, the trouting is for the uninformed and uninformative nature of the reopening. We may reopen everyone of the thousands of merges for 'more discussion' on Wikipedia with 'I have no opinion on the matter and have not researched the substantive issue, but lets reopen for more discussion' but it is troutworthy.Alanscottwalker (talk) 09:01, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

To Jimbo

Jimbo, I wish you would stop supporting off-wiki canvassing groups. You're the one in the wrong here and you're making the wiki worse by involving yourself with them. You seem to care more about the "image of Wikipedia" than the neutrality of Wikipedia, its mission, and its editors. SilverserenC 19:15, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

I'm unaware of any off-wiki canvassing groups that you are talking about. I'm certainly not supporting any.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 04:36, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
Dave already linked to plenty of them just below. Regardless of you knowing about them, they were the ones that came to this page to try and get you to POV push for them. And you did. SilverserenC 06:07, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
  • Jimbo has shown he just doesn't care. He sees reddit boards criticizing Wikipedia, skims through the Merge discussion and thinks because some editors have a mistaken concept of reality that he is right to discount over a month of discussions by long time editors who have had to deal with flocks of SPAs and anon IPs sent from off-site fringe groups. Like Stormfront here and here. Or the Stormfront 4/8channers at /pol/ here(I guess 4chan is blacklisted, so archived page). And of course the reddit groups here, here, here and here. Which, of course, has led to dozens of SPAs and anon IPs flooding the 'discussion' Jimbo has initiated. Great job Jimbo, I am sure you are hero to at least those people. Dave Dial (talk) 20:00, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
I don't read reddit so I know nothing about these threads you are referencing.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 04:36, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
I am happy to know that you don't waste your time reading reddit. I have wasted 15 or 20 minutes a few times trying to find something worthwhile there, without success. Cullen328 Let's discuss it 06:21, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
How do you even know it is Jimbo? I can go online and pretend I am Scrooge McDuck complete with my money bin passcode, does it mean it's true? - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 20:17, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

Actions speak louder than words. I don't think Silver seren is alleging that you are taking marching orders from some group. I think the point they're making is that if you make an action perceived as sympathetic to pressure groups, the lesson that people are going to absorb is "if you make enough noise, Jimbo himself will intervene on your behalf". However much you might want to be "just another editor", to the world at large you're the founder of Wikipedia. That carries a lot of political impact. (Thought experiment: how many random people can name you, and how many can name any other Wikipedia editor?) The only thing that's going to get reported outside of Wikipedia is "Wikipedia founder intervenes in discussion about X". -- (talk) 08:11, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

For that reason, I shall continue to do as I have always done.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 09:48, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
There's always going to be pressure groups. In fact, this section "To Jimbo" is a pressure group itself. It doesn't matter what Jimbo Does or doesn't do, there's always going to be someone looking at it..... In the recent "Cultral Marxism" article, he reopened the redirect discussion because he felt the timeline was too short. Is this pandering to a pressure group somehow? As far as I'm aware there's no time limit for discussing the content of WP. Maybe even after major events like a redirect/deletion there should still be an open discussion to reverse those decisions instead of something like "all the votes are in and you missed out" sort of mentality.....TyTyMang (talk) 05:15, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

I am not wheel warring with you

Hi Jimbo, I thought I'd better let you know I have turned that Marxism page into a disambiguation page. I think this is compatible with RGloucester's merge, and compatible with the community's views and your edits, but without the name of a school of thought redirecting to a conspiracy about that school of thought. I don't know if it will stay, but there you go. I am an admin, completely independent of this dispute, but this is not an administrative action - the discussion you initiated is not formally concluded. I have no fish in this sea, so I'm done on this topic after my three or four edits in this entire dispute and off to block some regular vandals. Thank you for intervening by the way. -- zzuuzz (talk) 13:33, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

zzuuzz has agreed to this being undone in discussion with me on the talk page. I want to be very cautious with all this, so I'm leaving it for now and going to bed. But I do think someone should carry through and revert it as we've agreed unless something else comes up. Metamagician3000 (talk) 14:00, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
I think that having a disambiguation page is a good step forward.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:23, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
No one has been able to establish that such a school of thought exists, though. Until this "school of thought" is sourced, how can we have disambiguation? There is nothing to disambiguate, because there is no "school of thought" called "Cultural Marxism". RGloucester 19:07, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
I am open to a better term for this descriptive usage which you describe yourself in a thread above.. I would suggest it is the mainstream usage rather than a conspiracy that The Jews were producing the theory and disharmony to profit themselves in America. I do think it is a long term solution, but in any case, I think disambiguation clarifies the current situation, as well as the one caused by the redirection, where people are wondering wtf is this. Regards. -- zzuuzz (talk) 19:47, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
People keep wondering "wtf is this" because no one can define "Cultural Marxism", because there is no definition. If you read the history of the page, this has been the problem since the page's creation. People have been asking "what is Cultural Marxism", and saying "this article doesn't explain what Cultural Marxism is" since the start of the article. Why, you wonder? That's because there is no scholarly definition of "Cultural Marxism" as a school of thought. There is no "mainstream usage" as a distinctive topic worthy of an article. The only usage refers to the conspiracy, which can be determined easily through a simple Google search. Look at what results you get when you search "Cultural Marxism". The descriptive usage I mentioned above, "cultural Marxism", is not a distinctive topic worthy of an article. It is merely a descriptive phrase. It is not one coherent thing that can be described in article. It is just two words attached together for the purpose of description. It is an extremely rare phrase, even in this descriptive usage. RGloucester 19:53, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Some would say you have some high standards for a disambiguation page in preference to what could be regarded a POV redirection, and I can see that we will not agree on this, despite I think much agreement elsewhere. Satisfied that I understand your response, I will now bow out and go and feed some chickens or something. -- zzuuzz (talk) 20:30, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Disambiguation pages are only warranted when we have multiple pages with the same name and parenthetical disambiguation, per WP:DABPAGE. We don't have multiple pages with the title "Cultural Marxism". A hatnote would resolve any confusion, and guess what, I implemented one when I did the redirect. RGloucester 21:42, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

Advertising Problem


Hi Jimmy. The team that implemented the ad campaign did it rather poorly, because the ads are getting indexed as content. Ads should be inserted in a way that makes them invisible to search engines. If you want to have somebody talk to me I could guide them. Jehochman Talk 16:35, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

Yeah, I already mentioned this to Lila.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 16:36, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
Here's a solution for anybody curious:
(1) Put the promotional unit in an iframe, something like <iframe src=""/>.  
(2a) Add <meta name="robots" content="noindex, nofollow"/> in the <head> section of banner.html, or
(2b) Add to the robots.txt the following:

disallow: /banner.html
Hope this helps. Jehochman Talk 16:51, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
See We fixed this on our end several days ago (by changing robots.txt to tell crawlers not to load CentralNotice banners) and the number of pages affected is already declining, but it will take Google some time to completely re-index. Peter Coombe (Wikimedia Foundation) (talk) 21:26, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
One thing that's really hurting is Wikipedia article pages don't seem to have meta descriptions. That's a field Google takes as a strong suggestion for text to use in the search snippet. Google doesn't always use it, but when one is not provided, they are more likely to just grab some arbitrary text from the page that happens to include one or more of the search keywords. It is considered a best practice to always provide a title and a meta description for every page. To generate a meta description automatically, you can use a function like this one (PHP, but you can convert it into whatever language you like).
/* This PHP Function generates a meta description string at 
least 80 characters long, ending with a period if possible, and no 
more than 156 characters. The output of this function should probably
be html encoded with a function such as htmlspecialchars() for use
in a web page. */

function make_description($code) 
  $padding = substr($pagedesc, 80);
  if ($padding === 0)
     return $pagedesc; 
  $length = strpos($padding, ".");
  if ($length === 0) 
      return $pagedesc; 
  return substr($pagedesc, 0, min($length + 81, 156)); 
Our articles start with a lede, which is almost always an ideal meta description. With that code you can take a chunk of the lede and use it automatically. This would help increase traffic to Wikipedia and would make the site more resilient from errors of the type you are experiencing. Jehochman Talk 04:35, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
We also have the Persondata template in the people articles and we could create new template to expand upon that using the short description parameter across more articles. -- Ricky81682 (talk) 10:12, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

Wikimedia genealogy project

Just wondering if you have any thoughts re: the idea of WMF hosting a genealogy project. If so, feel free to contribute to this discussion. Thanks for your consideration, ---Another Believer (Talk) 17:54, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

I don't have a strong view, other than a general view that the Wikimedia Foundation should and (under current plans) will focus efforts primarily on software and product for our existing projects. New projects are likely to be pretty much neglected and therefore perhaps not as successful as they could be under a different organizational framework.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 08:50, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for your response. ---Another Believer (Talk) 17:40, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia suggestions

Make all words in articles lead to new page related to the word, this can be done with programming when click on any word from article would lead to new articles but text would remain the same and standard wiki link to new article would override it or usual words or phrases.

In each edit in history make report vandalism or spam with short explanation.

Auto-sign when user begins with : but if edits inside between : an signature wouldn't sign it.

Shortcuts for edit summary for example m minor edit.

Wikibot that would automatically translate via Google Translate articles from English Wikipedia and save them to other Wikipedia's that could save more time in writing articles but only for new articles links and files would be copied by Wikibot and then replaced after translation. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Xand2 (talkcontribs) 07:40, 10 December 2014 (UTC)

When signature is changed automatically change all signature of user (I have seen that in RPG Maker games you can type name of player and that name is displayed in whole game).

TTS Text to Speech like Ekho I have read that it is possible to record ones own voice only vowels and consonants it is about one MB large and can read any text.And other languages as well.

Also pop up translation for words from Wiktionary and how much times articles were visited. Input methods embedded in Wiki editor like Chinese.

Also when make next word in new row in Wikipedia is displayed in same row this can be a problem for writing many words one below other.

Ancient Egyptian Babel for language knowledge.

Perhaps some translator like Google Translate which is online or for Android there are not much free quality translators today except Google Translate.

When users edit is reverted or changed by different user would notify the user in special notifications, this would help if user has hundreds or thousands of edits so that he doesn't need to search all pages.Watch page is only for some pages it would be useful to have most although user can ignore it if he wants.

Wiki template that would make active count users edits and articles. Xand2 金日光旦照 (talk) 20:51, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

@Xand2: You can make this suggestion in the Village Pump. LorChat 21:00, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
Thanks I have now posted it there. Xand2 金日光旦照 (talk) 21:10, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

Pop up translation from Wiktionary when mouse over word would translate it to English or other languages.English Wiktionary has millions of words (most are inflections) and you can use free OpenSource Kiwix for offline Wikipedia and Wiktionary (but Wiktionary is downloaded separately try using Google) and that offline Wiktionary could be programmed with pop up window to display articles (you can also find pop up code on Google like C++). Xand2 金日光旦照 (talk) 08:27, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

@Xand2: Again, Use the village pump LorChat 09:08, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

Mail Call

Just wanted to let you know I've dropped you a piece of highly important digital correspondence :) Dusti*Let's talk!* 18:17, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

Undisclosed Paid Advocacy (UPA) templates and Policy

Jimmy, I have two questions apropos User:Jimbo_Wales/Paid_Advocacy_FAQ. 1)What should happen to content that is the product of UPA (Undisclosed Paid Advocacy)? Perhaps, any UPA prior to the ToS should be grandfathered, like content on Commons prior to tightened rules on using appropriate license tags and the like. And any content created after the ToS banned UPA, that is the product of UPA, be removed through the use of templates like {{subst:Copyvio|url}}/{{Copyvio}}. 2)Are you aware of any significant efforts, since the Terms of Use were changed to bar UPA, to create a specific policy page that says that the product of UPAE, like the product of a copyright violation, should be removed? I don't think anyone's tried to create an equivalent of {{subst:Copyvio|url}} to tag UPA. I'm sure most of the folks who make money performing PAE and UPAE will continue to !vote against such moves, but perhaps Paid Advocates could be excluded from such voting. I thought it worth asking Jimbo, (and unavoidably, his talk page stalkers) and CTA.--Elvey(tc) 01:42, 5 December 2014 (UTC)

Anything to help deal with the scourge of paid advocates is worth considering. One problem with tagging UPA is that often it is somewhat ambiguous. (Often it isn't, of course.)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 08:24, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
Pinged for this discussion. I didn't even know there was a FAQ. As to your question, I don't know the answer. The attitude toward both disclosed and undisclosed paid contributions is extremely permissive, so I don't see the point of working up a sweat about it. Usually when a company dispatches employees or contractors to an article it is extremely obvious, and if dealt with firmly can usually be gotten rid of so that uninvolved editors can be left to edit without harassment. I actually addressed one aspect of the topic on my user page just the other day.[13] Coretheapple (talk) 15:46, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
By the way, Jimbo, having discovered the FAQ I've taken the liberty of adding a paragraph, so as to close a loophole that I've seen mentioned here and there. If it's not what you want, please advise and I will take it out. Coretheapple (talk) 16:30, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm generally in favor of anything that would tend to minimize paid advocacy editing, but I also really dislike all the tags that get left on article pages, sometimes for years after the problem has been addressed (I suggest putting most tags on the talk page). For the most part, the proposed tag would be doing the same thing as the advertising tags or the NPOV tag - so I'll say that there's no need for a new tag.
That said, there is a need for editors to go clean up the advertisers' (and the paes') messes. Perhaps we could organize Wiki-project:PAE cleanup. There have been a couple of projects that say that they try to minimize PAE problems, but to my reading they've ended up giving paid editors advice on how to skirt the rules - not something I want. If folks are really interested in a real PAE cleanup project, please let me know. Smallbones(smalltalk) 16:21, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
I'll second the tags comment. It seems like half of our articles boil down to:
The content on this page is not to be trusted. So, without further ado. . .
That's one scourge I'm working to address. -wʃʃʍ- 23:23, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
  • What is really needed is a check button under the edit summary with THIS IS A COI EDIT (linked to the policy page), right next to THIS IS A MINOR EDIT. If clicked, this would tag the summary as a COI edit so that the change could be reviewed by an unconnected editor. No need to deface the article for all time with a flag. Carrite (talk) 17:22, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
I would support that, as long as checking the box results in an immediate revert and ban on further editing in article space.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:35, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
That's a pretty extreme take, isn't it? Carrite (talk) 07:16, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
No, I think it's relatively mild, actually. Once someone self-identifies as a paid advocacy editor, it is extremely unwise (giving rise to a completely justified perception of corruption) to let them continue editing article space.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:46, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm all for what you're suggesting, Jimbo. But at this point it is not policy. If you want to make it policy, perhaps through a strengthening of the Terms of Use by the WMF, it would certainly be a step forward. But right now you'll not get support from the community. I think that this is an issue in which the community needs to be led, not followed. Coretheapple (talk) 16:00, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Jimbo, as you're involved with Wikia, maybe you could make clear to the staff there that this is the case? A quick look at the history of Wikia will show a number of edits in September by Yogi Beara, who has self-identified on their user page as working on behalf of Wikia. -- (talk) 23:16, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Whoa, Jimmy. The checkbox proposed is for COI edits, not PAE edits ("THIS IS A COI EDIT"). I agree that if there were a PAE edit checkbox ("THIS IS PAE") and it was checked, use should result in an immediate revert and ban on further editing in article space. But that's not what was proposed! I think there's been a misunderstanding, and that modifying your comments above would be in order.
Who thinks what is really needed is a check button under the edit summary with THIS IS PAID ADVOCACY EDIT (linked to the policy page), right next to THIS IS A MINOR EDIT?--Elvey(tc) 20:30, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
👍 Like HiDrNick! 15:44, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
That's a good idea. Coretheapple (talk) 17:30, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
Make the check box for THIS IS A PAID EDIT and require it to be used in the case of paid edits. I'm 100% in favor of that. Smallbones(smalltalk) 18:04, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
I think we all realize that not all COI edits are paid COI edits. They all need to be checkable, whether or not the writer has been paid. Carrite (talk) 07:18, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Who should I ping to get a reading on the technical issues of including such a box, Philippe (WMF)? Probably not, but he should know who to contact. The technical issues, as I see them, would be

1. how to get a read out on your watchlist, perhaps with a bolded P or PE or Pde (I've got a personal preference here) next to the paid entry. Perhaps only paid entries on a special list where you don't need to specify the articles you're interested in.

2. How long would it take to get up and running? Less than the time needed to pass a new policy (since it would have to be a requirement to click the box for paid entries)?

Smallbones(smalltalk) 20:21, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
This would be a horrible idea as it would send the false message that we condone COI (paid advocacy) editing. Such edits should be immediate grounds for banning.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:36, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
Again, this is a perspective that is way, way, way, way more extreme than the standing consensus about such things. The new Terms Of Use by WMF have more or less codified paid editing. That ship has sailed. Carrite (talk) 07:22, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I'd say that certain forms of paid editing, e.g. Wikipedians in Residence, are specifically allowed on En Wikipedia, others are regulated by the WMF under the ToS but not specifically mentioned under En Wikipedia rules. I'd agree that that ship has sailed, except that very few paid editors seem to follow the regulation - how many many paid editing declarations have you seen? (and how do you find these declarations? I think I've seen less than a half-dozen paid editing declarations, we may need something a bit stricter. Smallbones(smalltalk) 08:01, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Smallbones, don't fall for this fallacy of equating all paid editing with paid *advocacy* editing. We should welcome, for example, universities who encourage professors to edit Wikipedia on their subject matter expertise, even paying them bonuses to do so. That's not the issue that anyone is really concerned about and is 100% different from the moral corruption of paid advocacy editing. Carrite seems to think the ship has sailed on this issue, but he's mistaken. The WMF terms of service did not codify paid advocacy editing - it was a first step at banning it completely. The wind is blowing very strongly against it, and those who are engaging in paid advocacy editing of article space (as opposed to following the bright line rule approach) should understand that the mood of the community is very strongly against them and increasingly so.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:51, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I wish the wind was blowing that way. When I checked recently, I found it was blowing in the other direction. I expect I'd be blocked if I tried to get that close reversed, though the puffy article was UPA entirely funded via elance, and I think the close sets a bad precedent that should be overturned. The answer to question I asked when I opened this discussion appear to be thus: Q1)What should happen to content that is the product of UPA (Undisclosed Paid Advocacy)? A1) It should be left in place. WT? --Elvey(tc) 21:24, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

I think you (Jimbo) must have misunderstood me. This would just be a required disclosure for paid editing similar to one of the 3 required now. Paid editors now have their choice of declaring on their user page, on the talk page, or in the edit summary. This would just be a small variation of the edit summary, except that it would be required so that we can find paid edits easily and thus more easily monitor it, rather than searching around in 3 different places. i.e. paid editors can effectively hide their paid edits now. Smallbones(smalltalk) 22:59, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
I see where you are coming from but I still don't agree. I don't think we should take steps to normalize paid advocacy editing of article space whatsoever. We should require disclose (as we currently do) and require avoiding article space ENTIRELY for paid advocacy editors. There is simply no valid justification for doing that editing yourself, when you are being paid, as opposed to asking completely independent unpaid (i.e. uncorrupted) editors to take a look at your paid-for suggestions.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:46, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
@user:Smallbones I think such a plan for post-edit reviews would be appropriate if most paid edits were good changes that only needed a quick re-assurance. In practice though, the majority of them are self-serving edits, asking to add awards, philanthropy, and other promotional material using primary sources. Also, the number of hours it would take WMF to develop new features would actually be more hours than the community spends each month reviewing Request Edits in pre-existing tools.
I think the community is too focused on "transparency & review" as the solution to paid editing, whereas I give article-subjects advice based on an "abstain, unless, then" model, where abstaining is the de-facto. CorporateM (Talk) 04:56, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I think that "transparency and review" is where we're at. Let's make sure it is as transparent as can be and as well reviewed as we are able. That has always been the key to solving this contentious issue. (I really like your "transparency and review" phrasing, by the way, that's right on the money...) Carrite (talk) 07:28, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
For those interested in an example of CorporateM's advice on "abstain, unless, then", here is a batch of content that has been waiting patiently for nearly two weeks for the "then" portion, i.e., "review and consideration by a disinterested editor to avoid any remote appearance of impropriety". Clearly CorporateM's version ("The merger was opposed by consumer advocates, such as the Consumer Federation of America, due to anti-trust concerns. The two companies combined would become the largest pet food brand by market-share with a 45 percent share of the cat food market.") is better than Wikipedia's current version ("Both corporations saw this major strategic transaction as the ideal way to benefit from their combined know-how, complementary strengths and international presence in the growing pet-care market."), but since Nestle presumably paid for the improved content, it's radioactive and few volunteer editors would dare introduce it to Wikipedia's article space. CorporateM undoubtedly got paid for the research and writing time, regardless of whether it gets pasted into article space or not. Prelude after noon (talk) 15:31, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
From what I've seen, transparency and review has failed us quite significantly. Whether a paid editor discloses and follows the Bright Line or acts covertly, the outcome tends to be the same edits, only now the edits have increased stickiness and the paid editor can claim immunity to accountability for their edits, being that they didn't actually make them themselves. It promotes gaming the system, canvassing, and creates more trouble than just deleting promotional material in article-space. WP:COI says editors with a COI are suppose to be "cautious" but the PR industry seems to now believe advocacy is acceptable so long as it's in Talk space. There are cases where BrightLine/transparency is useful, but it is difficult to say whether its net-effect is good or bad. In most cases the article-subject wants something different than Wikipedia and we do not want them to reach those goals that are counter to our mission, regardless of the process or level of transparency used to attain them. CorporateM (Talk) 18:33, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
CorporateM, why didn't you disclose your COI for your (mostly new) Purina article when you nominated it for GA status? ([14]) You did so for some of your nominations there, but please do so for othera where you have a CoI, including the Purina article. That's best practice, right? --Elvey(tc) 21:24, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

I just had an idea that I have not thought through in any great detail. We have the capability (not used much here but wildly popular in other languages) to put articles into "flagged revisions" state, see Wikipedia:Pending changes. It would require some (relatively simple, probably) changes to MediaWiki to put editors into that state, or even for individual editors to tick a box to request review by an independent editor before that change goes live. I can imagine a lot of use cases for this.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:11, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Good idea to minimize bureaucracy. Requesting a change on the talk page is pretty much a waste of time because it's often overlooked. If the proposed change were turned into a pending change, that would be useful. Next time somebody reliable edited the article, the change would be reviewed and adopted or rejected. Presumably if an account were discovered doing paid advocacy, it could be set to this state by an administrator, or an ethical PR agency could create accounts in this state. Somebody doing an occasional paid edit could flag particular edits without flagging their account. Jehochman Talk 14:29, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I agree that this "flagged editors" thing is a good idea. Also I understand Jimbo's concerns about re Carrite's/Smallobne's suggestion. However, what Carrite is simply doing is recognizing that COI editing is permitted. I agree that identifying paid editors edits (Smallbones' idea) in the same fashion would be counterproductive. Coretheapple (talk) 16:04, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Such a feature would also be useful for new editors that are unsure of their edits and can use pending changes to attract coaching from more experienced editors. Regarding the feature for paid edits, it would be important that the reviewer has a button they can press to push it to the Talk page, since many COI contributions shouldn't be accepted as-is, but do flag important issues (errors, attack pages, etc.) that are important enough such that a disinterested editor should correct them. CorporateM (Talk) 14:34, 7 December 2014 (UTC) (paid editor)
  • This discussion has been more productive than usual, with some good ideas kicked around, and I hope Jimbo that you raise them at the WMF level. I see that the Foundation seems to be taking an activist stance toward enforcing its TOU, and that's all for the good. Coretheapple (talk) 16:55, 8 December 2014 (UTC) And the way this discussion has degenerated into the usual catfight demonstrates that leadership, not consensus, is what's needed. Coretheapple (talk) 16:57, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
This could be applied to this funding via elance, which I referred to above.--Elvey(tc) 20:30, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
What could be applied and what is elance? You can respond on my talk page if you wish. You've lost me. Coretheapple (talk) 16:57, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

"Requesting a change on the talk page is pretty much a waste of time because it's often overlooked." In other words,doing the right thing is a waste of time because it sometimes does not work. I couldn't disagree more with what Jehochman said. It's troubling to hear that kind of talk from an admin. I see no evidence that doing the right thing rarely "works". Doing the right thing would not be a waste of time even if it did not work 50% of the time. --Elvey(tc) 20:30, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

Elvey, facts are friends, whether they are good or bad. Our current process doesn't work well. When a conflicted editor uses a talk page to request edits, the response is usually somewhere between none and very, very slow. If we want people to use the process, we need to deliver results, not happy talk. Jehochman Talk 22:26, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
In my experience, nonresponse in such situations is due to unpaid editors not wanting to carry out the suggested edits, or not considering it to be a high enough priority compared to other things that need to be done in that article. I know of one specific situation in which a "company editor" turned a blind eye to a significant error in an article - an error that made his employer look good - while filling the talk page with minor, piddling requests that consumed the time of editors. Coretheapple (talk) 18:19, 9 December 2014 (UTC) the real world NinaSpezz (talk · contribs) writes "I work for Rubenstein Communications and I'd like to make the following addition just after the first sentence in Nickerson's "Professional career and government service" section on behalf of Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel. To mitigate conflict of interest issues, I ask that an editor review the edits and take them live, as they see fit. If there are no objections, I will go ahead and update the entry myself." How I came across her? (I like show tunes - get over it.) But this is this kind of legal editing that is going on everywhere. Either the WMF takes a stand or all of those 'quiet' articles will be PR'd to death while the hundreds of new WMF staff are brainstorming new apps the community doesn't need. AnonNep (talk) 18:55, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
I like Carrite (talk)'s idea; he has a knack for simple solutions that pack big Pareto_principle punches. Jimbo et al, I understand your concerns with regards to paid editing, but it seems to me that in practice we would serve our readers best by identifying as many COI edits as possible. If editors are in effect penalized for declaring potential COI edits, they simply won't do it.
My first edits to Wikipedia are a great case in point. When I was in charge of Zend_framework (and getting paid for it), I updated some out-of-date information on the article after asking if it would be OK on the talk page and getting no response. I would have checked such a COI edit box in a heartbeat, because I wanted my edits to bear the same weight as any good faith edit on Wikipedia. Not only are we missing opportunities to verify potential COI edits right now, but we're flying blind in deciding what to do about them as the COI and PAE editors fly below the radar. In the end, we all know they aren't going anywhere no matter what policy is established or how it is enforced. Let's at least find out more about them. Ultimately, I think we should welcome all good faith efforts that improve our articles no matter who makes them, because- as is so often repeated- we're doing all this for our readers, and, from where I sit, that policy is clearly what would serve them best. -wʃʃʍ- 23:49, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
Just to address one of your points, there is a "soft bigotry of low expectations" concerning paid editors, that they are inherently "outlaws" who "aren't going anywhere" even if banned from a site. In my experience (and I briefly wrote about it here), if told to take a hike, they will. Whether they should be, or tolerated, or whatever, is a separate issue, but let's dispense with that canard please. Coretheapple (talk) 00:59, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Hmmm. That is just one example. Here's another: Wikibiz. Greg has said he maintains a farm of socks and that he has no intention of abiding by the new Terms and Conditions. But these are just two examples. Where is the data to support your generalization? Your essay extrapolates to an extreme. Then again, where is my data? Doh! :) -wʃʃʍ- 05:10, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
So your position is that this person, who is has a vendetta against Jimbo and is engaged in a public campaign against Wikipedia, might be equally representative of the kind of people coming on Wikipedia as paid advocates? I certainly don't feel that way. I think he's very much an outlier. I have no doubt whatsoever that most professional p.r. people would agree with me that sock farms and other unethical tactics, aimed at forcing oneself into a website against its will, are completely reprehensible and wrong.
To answer your question: no I don't have any "data" to support my view that paid advocates are decent and ethical people trying to make a buck, and not crackpots with a vendetta against Wikipedia who will stop at nothing to get their way. But I think it's far more reasonable to assume the former rather than the latter in formulating an approach to paid advocacy. Coretheapple (talk) 16:47, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
I think you miss my point somewhat. Sure, Greg has a grudge against Jimmy that is almost pathological in size and tenacity; (Redacted); and he has a predilection for bigotry in his commentary on all things Wikipedia that many of us find very disturbing to boot. I agree- I pray, even- that he is an outlier. But what I'm getting at is the fact that neither of us can say so with any confidence because we lack the data to back either of our assertions up. If we brought PAE and COI editing more in to the open, we could start collecting data that would help us discuss and figure such things out. And if those data show that PAE should be aggressively stamped out because it is being abused to the point of compromising the integrity of the encyclopedia, the terms of use can be adjusted accordingly. After all, if someone is trying to make a buck off Wikipedia by damaging it in any way, s/he can't expect us to protect their business interests. The right decision always starts with data, and having editors self-flag potential COI edits is a great start, IMO. -wʃʃʍ- 22:35, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
On the contrary, I completely comprehend what "collecting data" means (and always does when action is needed): the status quo. Coretheapple (talk) 23:03, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
  • All of these proposals, feasible or otherwise, stand on thin and even nonexistent policy. The TOU says the following: As part of these obligations, you must disclose your employer, client, and affiliation with respect to any contribution for which you receive, or expect to receive, compensation. That's it. Nothing about not editing articles. Requiring not editing article pages or an immediate ban for COI editors as proposed above by Jimbo are rehashes of the Bright line proposal, and related proposals in the template on that page, all of which snow failed last year. I don't think much about COI editing has changed in a year, and certainly not as much to warrant new policy discussions. KonveyorBelt 17:38, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
  • I agree with you that there is no reason at all to waste a lot of time on policy proposals that are not going to succeed. The TOU was formulated by the WMF, and similar initiatives will have to be taken at that level. Coretheapple (talk) 17:55, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
I doubt the WMF would approve such proposals on a sweeping scale ie. "no COI article editing, disclosed or not" as it would go against their principles. To get agreement on such a big chage, you'd have to conclusively show through a study that A. All COI editing on articles is a detriment to the encyclopedia and B. The problem can be effectively solved through a big change to the TOU like that. I think even if A shows that a wide majority of COI edits are harmful, B will fail, largely due to a problem of not enough people to find and revert COI edits. What would end up happening with regards to B would largely be what the situation is today: Large popular articles get COI edits quickly reverted, while minor pages that few volunteers actually visit fester for years with bad content. Of course, this whole hypothesis is contingent on the fact that A is proven to be at least mostly true. Until someone actually does a study on it, we don't conclusively know, but I belive that it is far from true. KonveyorBelt 18:31, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
It's up to them, really. I suppose they could spend months or even years analyzing it to death, or could simply decide not to allow it. Coretheapple (talk) 22:10, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

Article in the Register

The Register has published another article criticizing the Wikimedia Foundation for not using the $60 million in assets it has, which according to the article is "far more than the Wikimedia Foundation (WMF) needs to run a website." (I say "another" because of articles like this). Do you, Mr. Wales, have anything to say about this? I.e. what is the purpose of the $60 million that the foundation is said to be "sitting on"? Everymorning talk to me 18:45, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

The article is by Andrew Orlowski, someone's whose journalistic skills I can't comment on here. --NeilN talk to me 19:07, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
I can. Past experience shows he's got a very long history of attacking Wikipedia, often with one-sided and inaccurate or downright untrue claims. He's also got form as an egregious climate change denialist. Falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus. Prioryman (talk) 19:18, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Orlowski used to be amusing. About ten years ago. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 20:05, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
More diplomatic than I would have put it. :-) --NeilN talk to me 20:23, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for adding the link, NeilN. I must have forgotten to do so myself for some reason. Everymorning talk to me 20:32, 1 December 2014 (UTC)

This one is easy. I'm extremely proud of our financial track record and consider our level of reserves to be prudent and sensible - neither too large nor too small. Here is some typical advice about nonprofit reserves: "A commonly used reserve goal is 3-6 months' expenses. At the high end, reserves should not exceed the amount of two years' budget." How much should my nonprofit have in its operating reserve? For further information from the Wikimedia Foundation, see this question and answer.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:01, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Thanks Jimbo, that's really useful. It's strange that Orlowski, who is apparently a professional journalist, didn't do the basic fact-finding that would have given him those answers before he started frantically hammering his keyboard. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 21:59, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Just to expound on what Jimbo Wales said, the document he linked shows the 2014-2015 budget to be "$58.5 million in spending, including $8.2 million in spending allocated for grants". The article linked describes $60 million in reserve which is in line with a 12 month reserve, which is common. Rmosler | 22:22, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
Whoever said Orlowski was a professional journalist? He appears to come up with his story before he writes it, then cherry-picks or misrepresents facts to support his preferred spin. This is just more of the same. Prioryman (talk) 10:49, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
I meant professional in what I consider the original sense, that is, someone who makes their living by means of full time employment in a particular activity. I did not intend to imply anything about the quality of the work carried out during that employment, nor about any ethical principles underlying the execution of it. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 20:00, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
You allege Wikipedia runs no adds, but how about 14,000+ advertisement articles you have? How many more are there]? For example User:CorporateM is an openly payed editor who writes good advertisement articles, yet still advertisements, and get paid for writing them. (talk) 19:12, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
Example, please? --Demiurge1000 (talk) 20:00, 2 December 2014 (UTC)
It is important for a non-profit to be able to support its operations for a suitable period if funds dry up for some reason, note also that this figure is for assets - so it includes the servers, any advanced payments, office furniture - and it doesn't take account of liabilities. Orlowski has been attacking Wikipedia for years, and has really lost all credibility where Wikipedia is concerned. See for example [15] where he implied that only Wikipedia editors would want to read Wikipedia... (and here for why his Immanuel Kant argument was wrong.) However it might be ethical to go back to the model where the banner is removed the minute we hit our target. All the best: Rich Farmbrough19:04, 4 December 2014 (UTC).
The longevity of many very small non-profits (and especially large ones) rely on their endowments and safe investments to operate through tough times. Even minor things like accounting for inflation and increases in the cost of services becomes important when you operate off donations. Immanuel Kant is never someone I'd want to argue with, but his arguments have sizable holes once you pick through the layers. Gosh... David Hume is at Good Article nominations and we are here bringing Kant into the matter! Small world, especially since it is you who is bringing it up Rich! Haha. ChrisGualtieri (talk) 22:11, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
Anyone who wants to know how easy it is to end up with an endowment that loses significant amount of its worth through bad investing can ask Harvard what happened to its endowment causing it to institute a hiring freeze and stop its new science campus plans when the economy imploded and the Great Recession began. The core of an endowment shouldn't be used for day to day expenses, it is a rainy day fund and a source of dividend creation that can subsidize the ebb and flow inherent in normal flows of revenue.Camelbinky (talk) 20:35, 5 December 2014 (UTC)
It's typical that the very first reaction here to the Register's article is to demean its writer. The issue many people have with this fundraising campaign is that the ads clearly imply that Wikipedia's survival is at stake, when it is not. The ads are clearly deceptive, and may violate laws in some countries. According to this discussion, more than a few Wikipedia insiders think the ads are misleading also. Wikipedia's survival is not at stake. Costs, mainly for programming staff have doubled while the number of users is steady or even declining. Even if the site had no fundraising revenues, it could easily cut staff and survive for years. Most people are donating because of the content, yet very little of the funds goes to content creators. And there's the issue of the fundraising banners taking up 50% of user's screens. Here's my line-by-line analysis of the fundraising banner, and here's another article on the The Daily Dot. -- Sparkzilla talk! 01:22, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
Those who attack the person and not their arguments are not helping the matter, but criticism of Wikipedia is a key part of understanding and correcting flaws. Most of us are here to build and maintain the growing encyclopedia and the argument about the ads does deserve some discussion. I have found them more intrusive, but I still think they are a major improvement over donation ads appearing over every article. I'm sure Jimbo is aware of the "humor" that campaign enabled and the WMF moved on from that style. Could the current ads be excessive, yes, but trying new things is an important part of trying to improve. It is probably just not best to do so on this page, at this time. ChrisGualtieri (talk) 01:36, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
I agree with you, and that's why I think it's important to distinguish this brief hit piece from the article in Slate discussed separately. It's absurd to criticize a nonprofit for fundraising. That is what nonprofits do. That is how they obtain the resources to carry out their mission. The presence of $27 million in cash is meaningless. Wikipedia isn't "sitting" on $60 million, which represents fixed as well as liquid assets. The cash portion could evaporate for any number of reasons, such as litigation or some other unexpected event. Dumb article by a writer with an agenda, in a publication that is sensationalistic and has little credibility. The Slate article, on the other hand, made good points. Coretheapple (talk) 18:11, 13 December 2014 (UTC)

Damage to the brand

This has gone viral, and the Wikipedia brand is taking a serious hit because the Wikimedia foundation has been completely tone deaf when members of the community it is supposed to be supporting have complained (see mailing lists). Do you have an opinion about this? --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 23:51, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Can you point me to a specific thread on a mailing list? Where has the Wikimedia Foundation been tone deaf in relation to this in particular? What should I be reading?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 13:49, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
I think he's talking about this one. -- Sparkzilla talk! 20:14, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
Naw, that couldn't be what SB_Johnny is talking about. Check out [16], [17], [18], and all the other replies from the foundation. They are very clearly listening, encouraging critical debate, answering questions with lots of data to support their statements, and altering things based on the feedback. In short, they are very much on top of that thread and others I've read.
Newsflash! No one likes raising funds with banners on the site. This just in: it costs money to do what the WMF was created to do. Stop the presses! No one has figured out how to fully fund the WMF without banners.
People will undoubtedly swear up and down that I have a conflict of interest here, so, please, take my comments with an extra heaping helping of skepticism and look at the actual facts to come to your own conclusions. For a bunch of people who have dedicated so much time to writing an encyclopedia, it really blows my mind how much criticism is thrown around with absolutely no direct citations when there are so many sources available. SB_Johnny's comment is just one example. No one can be sure what he's even referring to! We can and should do better than this. -wʃʃʍ- 23:16, 10 December 2014 (UTC)
Yep, that's the thread. Sorry ,Wil but the two posts you linked to didn't address the thing people were worried about at all. Nobody was saying that the banners weren't bringing in donations, but rather that the tone and emphasis were deceptive. Deceptiveness isn't good for the brand. Get it now? (Also, please learn how to use the {{u}} template rather than dropping people's signatures in places they didn't actually sign). --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 12:59, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for the template tip. I'm still a little new here.
Still no actual citations to what people have actually said, tho? Where are the posts in which people complain about tone and emphasis? You might be right, but how would I- or anyone else- know? -wʃʃʍ- 22:07, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Given his interest in the value of the brand, I hope Jimmy will just read the entire thread. It's worth a half hour of his time. --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 23:33, 11 December 2014 (UTC)
Will, the elves at Wikipediocracy have written an article that lays out the comments: [19] -- Sparkzilla talk! 07:02, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
@Wllm: The simple solution is to slash the WMF's remit, using fewer, less obnoxious fundraisers and the WMF's large reserves to fund an organisation which does no more than what it ought to be doing: web hosting, technical maintenance and legal. The communities can handle themselves well enough, and even with those that don't the WMF doesn't step in to fix them anyway. Small fundraisers could be held for software development which is welcomed by the communities. BethNaught (talk) 19:18, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm no fan of the WMF, but if anything is going to hurt Wikipedia's brand it wouldn't be an article exposing the earth-shattering fact that a non-profit engages in fundraising! And at year-end no less! Stop the presses! Coretheapple (talk) 22:09, 13 December 2014 (UTC)


Hello @Jimbo Wales:

I don't know if you remember, but @HJ Mitchell: asked you about a shitlist 3 or 4 days ago, however you seem to have forgotten to reply.

It was regarding harassment regarding Gamergate controversy. As you can see some users are being harassed and attacked over this, I'm sure that hosting such a thing on a for-profit Wikifarm is not lost on the page creators. I'm not sure how you are involved in Wikia these days Jimbo, but if you meant what you said here about harassment being dealt with, any pressure you can apply on the relevant people to deal with that shitlist would be greatly appreciated.

I look forward to your response regarding helping us :)--5 albert square (talk) 16:20, 11 December 2014 (UTC)

Hello again @Jimbo Wales:
Is there any response to this yet?
If you are unable to assist, could you please reply and point us in the right direction?
If you do not wish to discuss this on Wiki, then please feel free to email myself or @HJ Mitchell:. Thank you.--5 albert square (talk) 14:11, 12 December 2014 (UTC)
Tip: if you called it a "hitlist" rather than a "shitlist" and were a bit less presumptuous, the chance of Jimmy responding would go up about 1000%, in my opinion. Jehochman Talk 03:07, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
I've seen jimbo weigh in on conversations regarding the usage of various words so I doubt it really matters and that is a great way to address another admin's concerns about the comments. I thought you guys ate your young and therefore had to stick together? Hell in a Bucket (talk) 11:33, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
I've not assumed anything. Apologies if it came across that way.
It shouldn't matter what I call the list, whether it's hitlist or worse. At the end of the day I am asking for help and it is something that Jimbo said he was interested in assisting with. My name is not on this list but others obviously are and at the end of the day it is us admins who deal with the fall out. The list is being used to harass, out and bully some editors, from what I understand both on and off Wikipedia. Only yesterday one editor had somewhere in the region of a dozen socks set up by a sockpuppeteer harassing them, when I, other admins and CheckUser looked into it, it all came back to this. I don't think that's right so I'm only trying to help put an end to it. However, this requires assistance from someone higher than an admin like myself, as Jimbo has said he is interested in helping with this, I have posted here asking for his help--5 albert square (talk) 13:27, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Jonathan, I don't really want to get into an argument about semantics, but "hitlist" sounds like a list of targets for some sort of further action, and I think that's a little melodramatic—I don't think the editors listed there have much to fear from the loonies responsible for it—whereas "shitlist", at least where I come from, is a common term for a list of enemies. Perhaps it has a different meaning on the other side of the pond? When I raised this, given Jimmy's stance on harassment in the original thread, I wasn't expecting anyone to move mountains, but especially given that it is on a wikifarm Jimmy founded, I hoped he might at least look into it. Even "go forth and multiply" is better than silence. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 13:45, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Then say "enemy list". In general, behavior on this page is atrocious. People are insulting, presumptuous and even "obnoxious", making demands of their host. If you clearly distinguish your question from the rest of the muck raking, it's more likely you'll get a substantial answer. Jehochman Talk 14:39, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Thank you. I think it is actually very beneficial for people other than me to challenge people on "insulting, presumptuous and even 'obnoxious'" behavior. When I do it, often as not, I just get another person jumping in to be rude. As it turns out, I just haven't had the time to get to this thread. I've contacted the Wikia community support team about the page. That's the appropriate venue for this.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 16:35, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Thank you for your response. I don't know my way around Wikia, so I'd be very interested to hear what progress you make. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 16:39, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Many thanks for your response Jimbo and for your assistance. Like HJ Mitchell I don't know my way around Wikia so I would also be very interested to hear what progress is made :)--5 albert square (talk) 16:42, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Sorry to bother you again Jimbo but I thought you might like some more background information, the sockpuppets I mention above, their reports can be found here and here, it would appear to be two sockpuppeteers harassing one Wikipedian regarding Gamergate. Interestingly enough, the second sock has been active since 2008, made 1 edit in 6 years and only edits again in 2014 to get involved in Gamergate. I hope this is of help to you--5 albert square (talk) 17:08, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
  • Comment - In my view, the list is better left up. It gives an idea of how these people think. I was put on the 'list' before I even knew anything about 'Gamergate'. My addition to the list concerned a racial incident on Wikipedia, and as I voiced my concern about it, I was added to the list. I am added a second time, even though I have never edited the Gamergate article or it's Talk page. It really shows that many of these POV pushers are from the fringe far right(MRA. Stormfront, etc). Thanks. Dave Dial (talk) 17:14, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
    • Not to worry, Dave, I'm reliably informed there are copies and similar lists elsewhere on the web. What irks me is not the existence of the list (I've been subject to much worse in the past; standard fare for an admin), but that it's hosted on Wikia, JW's revenue-earning wikifarm—an irony which I'm sure the authors find delightful. HJ Mitchell | Penny for your thoughts? 17:58, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
      • Yea, I've been given some of the same information. The people over there aren't the only ones having a laugh, so is Stormfront. Where they censor words like "Fuck" and "shit", but encourage and are littered with racial epithets over and over. Sigh.... Dave Dial (talk) 18:16, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
Hi Jimbo, just to let you know an IP requested deletion of the page independently and it has been deleted. Thanks for everyone's assistance :)--5 albert square (talk) 22:33, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
I'm late to the conversation but maybe someone could explain why the aforementioned page is either a "hit list" or "shit list". It looks like a summary to me. I'm using an archive as a source [[20]]. Jgm74 (talk) 02:02, 14 December 2014 (UTC)
Are you kidding? It's the unmasking of a--supposed--conspiracy, in which certain bits of information are taken out of context and presented in the worst possible light. Drmies (talk) 02:10, 14 December 2014 (UTC)
Thank you @Drmies:, yes I can confirm that information was being taken out of it and mis-used. Some Wikipedia editors were being harassed and bullied on and off Wikipedia because of it and I'm sorry but that's not what Wikia should be used for--5 albert square (talk) 03:21, 14 December 2014 (UTC)
Note that I added "supposed" in my comment, for those who actually think that there is a cabal of Wikipedia editors and admins who are opposed to gaming (yeah, that totally spells out Ryulong) and wish to impose their communistic way of life on the rest. Let me tweet on it some. Thanks 5, Drmies (talk) 14:43, 14 December 2014 (UTC)

Just as an FYI, the response from the Wikia Community Support Team is that it was already deleted before they saw my inquiry - someone else had complained about it.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:44, 14 December 2014 (UTC)

  • It's actually a bit of a shame this was deleted, and I am pleased that Jimbo wasn't involved in it. There is a certain tang in the air of "Free and open knowledge, except when it shows us in a bad light." And make no mistake there has been a significant amount of knee-jerk reaction on Wikipedia over this matter. All the best: Rich Farmbrough00:37, 15 December 2014 (UTC).
I just want to clarify that the one who got the page deleted wasnt a random ip or jimbo. It was actually kumioko, the editor you all hate so much and had banned from the project for speqking out against abusive admins that jimbo refuses to do anything about. Admins who will no doubt delete this post and accuse kumioko of i might add. So while you all are patting each other on the back, i wanted to clarify it was a banned user who did you a solid. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Mobile199 (talkcontribs) 18:12, 15 December 2014 (UTC)

Steps to solve the problem

As noted immediately above there are many people (maybe even a consensus) that think the Wikipedia admin system and the governance system in general has many problems. What seems to be missing is proposals on how to solve the problem. I'll propose a couple of very general steps, but I'd really like to see what steps other people propose to actually solve the problem.

  • 1st - we must recognize that there is a serious problem, and that we *will* be taking steps to solve it - if not sooner then later.
  • 2nd - the WMF should organize a "governance reform" project to come up with a solution - even if this is expected to take a couple of years.
  • 3rd - the consensus system is broken. It has actually worked amazingly well over the last dozen years. I mean "amazingly well" in terms of the old saw "Wikipedia can not possibly work in theory, it only works in practice." Well now it is not working in practice either. I think consensus works best with a working group of maybe 300 editors. With 3,000 or 30,000 editors, I can't see how it possibly will continue to work in the long-term. A system where surveys of *random editors* for big questions (not the matters where only 30 editors are interested), could block out a range of options for those questions that seem to take forever to solve otherwise.

I'll contribute more on this later, but I'll ask that folks NOT clog up this section with comments on "why we can't have goverance reform." I just want to see a list of possible governance reforms, so that when people ask "well, what is your proposed alternative?" we have a list of possibilities. Brainstorming, not criticizing new ideas at this point. Smallbones(smalltalk) 15:44, 14 December 2014 (UTC)

If consensus works better with smaller numbers, then the declining editor numbers will have been accompanied by an improvement in that mechanic. All the best: Rich Farmbrough01:00, 15 December 2014 (UTC).
If you are talking about the admin system there was already a consensus done on it with no action taken as a result, not everyone on Wikipedia feels that the system is broken. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 02:52, 15 December 2014 (UTC)

It's simple: take done this abomination called Wikipedia. (talk) 02:02, 15 December 2014 (UTC)