User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 62

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I'll make this quick. It says here that "all contributions made to the Wikimedia Foundation are tax deductible". Is that only in terms of money? I ask because there are good, hard working people who spend the equivalent of a 40 hour work-week editing and maintaining Wikipedia alone. Doesn't that kind of contribution, that kind of dedication, count as "tax deductible" under the auspices of Wikimedia?

I'm sure this will be deleted off your talk page in a matter of minutes, but I had to ask if only in the interests of those editors who have made Wikipedia into what it is today. Thank you for your time sir. (talk) 00:19, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

The Wikimedia Foundation has no control over what is tax deductible - that's up to the various taxing authorities (governments) of the world. In general, in all jurisdictions that I'm aware of, it is not possible to get a break on your taxes for doing volunteer work for a charity. Whether that would be a good thing or not is of course a complex and interesting question, but not one that the Wikimedia Foundation can really do anything about! :-)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 00:24, 22 July 2010 (UTC)
Bummer... I for one, would love some variation of earned income credit for my work! :D Thelmadatter (talk) 00:29, 22 July 2010 (UTC)
Thank you sir. (talk) 00:30, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

In the U.S., you cannot deduct the value of your time, but you can deduct out of pocket expenses. For example, if you pay by the minute (instead of a flat monthly rate) for Internet use and you have documentation showing how many minutes were spent doing things for Wikipedia... More commonly, if you pay for electricity, then you could try to calculate how much electricity you use doing stuff for Wikipedia and how much it costs you. Do not take this too far; if your home computer breaks and you have to go to the public library to work, and you say that you went there only to do stuff for Wikipedia there, and you try to claim the fuel used driving there, the IRS is not going to believe you... (talk) 19:20, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

categorization of living people

religious and non religious categorization of living people

Hi Jimmy, in January you were added by User:Metal termite to this list List_of_nontheists_(surnames_T_to_Z) using this supporting citation Would you help clear this up, are your comments in that link the type of comments that should be allowing us to categorize living people as affiliated with this or that philosophy or group. My position would be, no, in the quoted text, atheism and your self identification or affiliation to that group or philosophy is not mentioned in the dialog. You say you are a complete non believer but don't truly specify if this is aligned to an atheist doctrine. Off2riorob (talk) 09:44, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

I think that, in general, such lists are problematic in a lot of ways. However, if we do have a list like this it should likely be limited to people who are notably non-theist. I'm doubt that I am notably so, as I do not engage in any activities around that, i.e. I don't make speeches about it, I am not the member of any organizations devoted to it, etc. The quote, in particular, is not a very good one because without context, someone might assume that I am a nihilist. I believe lots of things. :-)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:59, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

Appreciate your comment. I agree that the question, is this actually noteworthy in the life of this person should be high on our list of inclusion criteria. Just to let you know, the question arose out of a little discussion at the BLPN. As per this discussion, removedOff2riorob (talk) 18:15, 22 July 2010 (UTC)

List like these always seem to be a little sloppy (perhaps someone has changed their mind, but nevermind we've got a quote so that'll do) and a bit campaigning (looks at all these atheists!). I agree that such should be confined to those notable for the ideology in question, or better use a category. Your religious views, if significant, belong on your biography.--Scott Mac 18:24, 22 July 2010 (UTC)
There is a subtle difference between nihilist and nihilist but I am glad you are neither lol – Wikipedia would be more uncyclopedia than encyclopedia :¬)
The list being renamed from atheist to nontheist seems a little strange as atheist and nontheist are the same - atheism does not preclude religious beliefs - it would be possible to be a Hindu atheist and not believe in any god Chaosdruid (talk) 13:30, 23 July 2010 (UTC)
Except nontheist is a made up word.--Scott Mac 17:36, 23 July 2010 (UTC)
I checked out of curiosity and it seems to be used, instead: [1] ; [2]. --Cyclopiatalk 17:49, 23 July 2010 (UTC)
It is still a made-up word. That you can find a neologism on Google proves little. See also[3]--Scott Mac 14:31, 24 July 2010 (UTC)
(just for the sake of geeky discussion) I don't get what your example should prove. If it's used in books and articles, it means it's not made-up, it means it's part of the lexicon of the language. --Cyclopiatalk 14:41, 26 July 2010 (UTC)


Thank you. Cwill151 (talk) 05:40, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

GOCE Newsletter

Writing Magnifying.PNG
GOCE July 2011 backlog elimination drive chart

Greetings from the Guild of Copy Editors Backlog Elimination Drive! We have now passed the halfway point, so here's an update.

Progress Report - Progress toward the targets has been good. 751 articles out of the approximately 1,610 we would like to get completed by the end of the month were done by July 16, so we will be very close to meeting the target for volume. However, we would like to clear all of the 2008 articles from the backlog, and there are still 899 left to do. Please consider choosing one of these older articles when looking for something to copy edit. If we focus our firepower we can completely wipe out 2008 from the queue.

Participation Report - 95 people signed up for the July drive. This is a great result compared to May, when we had 36. However, in May only one person that signed up didn't do any copy edits, and in July only 54 of the 91 have posted any copy edits on the big board.

The task may seem insurmountable but please remember that if all 95 participants copy edit just one article a day from now until the end of the month, we will eliminate 1,323 more articles from the backlog. So please consider participating at whatever level you can! All contributions are appreciated.

This newsletter was prepared for the GOCE by Diannaa (Talk), S Masters (talk), and The Raptor Lettuce talk.

(timestamp for auto-archiving) Fram (talk) 07:18, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Mimi Macpherson

Hi Jimbo. I just wanted to follow up on our discussion about Mimi Macpherson from a little while back, and ascertain the status of your communications with her. Thanks, NW (Talk) 14:47, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

I'm off to bed now, but I'll check on this tomorrow if I can. I'll be sending her an email, and since she's in Australia, it will probably be a couple of days for the cycle to complete.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 02:50, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Death anomalies

Hi Jimbo, further to our chat at Talk:Friedrich von Bömches, I was wondering if you would like to make a comment in this proposed signpost article? ϢereSpielChequers 16:53, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

Sure, how about something like this: "I'm excited to see this kind of machine-assisted editing. In the foreseeable future, it will not be possible for machines to actually make judgment calls about editorial matters, but it is entirely possible for this type of work, as well as more advanced semantic analysis, to provide useful assistance to human editors, particularly in finding contradictions and anomalies. Merlissimo is a rock star!"--Jimbo Wales (talk) 16:58, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

Wow! That's even more commas in one sentence that I usually manage! ;) --Tango (talk) 17:14, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, don't know if it will make today's signpost, but its submitted. Any suggestions as to how else I could promote this to other wikis - I'm afraid it all started just too late to Gdansk. ϢereSpielChequers 17:24, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Thanks a lot Jimbo :D. Merlissimo 13:13, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Christopher Monckton, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley

Jimbo, following the comments from you and others on the BLP noticeboard about the coverage of Lord Monckton's relationship with the House of Lords, I've posted a proposed revised text at Talk:Christopher Monckton, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley‎#Monckton and Parliament. Any views you might have would be appreciated. -- ChrisO (talk) 20:25, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

Climategate name change debate

Jimbo, there is another debate on the proper name for the Climatic Research Unit email controversy, proposing that it be renamed to Climategate per Wikipedia:Article titles#Neutrality and article titles which states in part: True neutrality means we do not impose our opinions over that of the sources, even when our opinion is that the name used by the sources is judgmental.

Your prior comments on the issued are being argued by both sides to infer your support of their position, and I thought it might be easier just to ask you to comment on it, so there is no question. Thanks, GregJackP Boomer! 22:33, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

Thank you, GregJackP Boomer! 23:18, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
In keeping with my comment in that discussion, I would request that, rather than clarifying his past statements, Jimbo weigh-in on whether this is an issue worthy of ArbCom or not. I would even go so far as to ask that he refer the matter there himself, removing further delay in having to apply to hear the matter (however, if he feels arbitration would be warranted but does not wish to wield that sort of influence on the proceedings, I would be willing to put a few days into a proper application).
The amount of time being expended in further debating the matter passed into a state of unconstructive long ago and even if there existed some middle ground on which mediation could find purchase, I cannot fathom the results would be accepted by current (or future) parties for very long. Additionally, a final decision through arbitration would set important precedent in the project's convention for article titles.
--K10wnsta (talk) 08:55, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
Other than some general carping on all sides, there does not appear to me to be a breakdown of constructive dialog on this particular topic. Yes, there are predictable partisans (on both sides) who are unfairly trying to paint others. Yes, there is a small amount of heat. But mostly this is a civilized attempt to find consensus. The previous compromise, which I still weakly support even though I think from a content perspective it is not the optimal solution yet, is being questioned: there is no harm in that.
The issue I see here is that all sides appear to accept Wikipedia's general conventions for article titles, but no one has yet hit upon the right answer.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 10:50, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Existence of God.

Wikipedia appears to me like a movement of giving/spreading knowledge to everyone without any anticipation. A great (though not a perfect word) idea and action, I have ever seen.

My topic/questions is.. What do you say about the existence of God ?

Suresh, Hyderabad, India (talk) 09:29, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Have you read Existence of God? - WAS 4.250 (talk) 19:57, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Afghan War Diary links

There is a current thread at Talk:The_War_Logs#Remove_easy_access_to_the_papers_from_wikipedia regarding linking to wikileaks. User:Bdell555 is stating that we cannot link to wikileaks because he the material may have been illegally obtained. Is a direct link to wikileaks allowed?Smallman12q (talk) 17:17, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

The only thing I really have to say about it is that I wish people would stop citing WP:NOTCENSOR all the time. It almost never answers anyone's actual objections, and it may seriously mislead people who hear it for the first time. It sounds like an "in your face" kind of "we don't care about what happens" when in fact, we in general can, should, and do follow thoughtful, careful, respectful, serious linking policies that do involve - at times - declining to link to material that is in some way illegal or harmful.
That doesn't answer the question of whether we should link in this particular case - I think we should - but it does say that those arguing for linking can't simply say WP:NOTCENSOR and expect that to carry the day.
There are various factors that we should weigh thoughtfully, and one of them is the potential for a link to these documents to cause harm. That's actually a completely valid question that deserves an answer. And I think it can be answered quite well with two points: first, the documents are already all over the Internet and in global news headlines - anyone who wants to look at them can, no problem, and Wikipedia won't make a bit of difference in that regard. Second, President Obama himself said ""While I'm concerned about the disclosure of sensitive information from the battlefield, that could potentially jeopardise individuals or operations, the fact is these documents don't reveal any issues that haven't already informed our public debate on Afghanistan." [4]--Jimbo Wales (talk) 03:45, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

Arbitrator Election

Just curious, how do arbitrators get elected/selected? AirplaneProRadioChecklist 01:36, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

WP:ACE. Dr.K. λogosπraxis 01:43, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

Just curious

Dear Sir, I'm just curious as to whether you think it is alright for admins to call users "d*cks" (but with an i instead of a *)? EVula called me this repeatedly on Wikipedia:Administrators'_noticeboard/Incidents. I don't mind admitting when I'm wrong, but I didn't realize it was okay to be sweared at by administrators in the process. Just wondering whether this was the future of being part of the WP community? Thanks for your contributions towards society. Sincerely, Njsustain (talk) 18:26, 25 July 2010 (UTC)

See WP:DICK. It isn't good to call someone a dick, but it is even better not to be one.--Scott Mac 18:30, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Thank you for clearing up the acceptable etiquette here on WP, sad as it apparently is. Njsustain (talk) 18:33, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Context: I said "I honestly think Njsustain is being a bit of a dick here." The fact that you're commenting about this all over the place after saying you were done with the content debate (where you were insulting another editor, for the record) just makes me feel pretty damn sure of my initial reaction. (yes, I just used profanity; oh well) EVula // talk // // 18:34, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
The fact that you keep trying to defend your actions just makes me feel pretty dams sure that your actions were indeed inappropriate. Oh well. Njsustain (talk) 18:39, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
I think administrators should never call other users "dicks" under any circumstances whatsoever. It's not the worst thing in the world, of course, but neither does that make it ok.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:32, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
It may be a largely semantic debate, but (personally) I think there's a difference between saying "you're a dick" and "you're acting like a dick". The latter is the correct context for the statement (direct link to the thread can be found at WP:ANI#Disruption by User Njsustain). EVula // talk // // 20:48, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough, but notice the impact here. Instead of focusing on the content dispute, which is a perfectly legitimate one, the complainant has degenerated into anger over behavior. (Notice that in saying that the dispute is a legitimate one, I'm not taking sides on who is right in the dispute.) I still think it is best to avoid personal attacks and language which may tend to inflame a dispute rather than calming it. We all fail in this at times, of course, I'm not blaming you or attacking you for it. I'm just saying, it's best if we don't do that.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:01, 25 July 2010 (UTC)
That's a fair stance. I honestly didn't think it would incense the situation as much as it did, but then again, I've got a considerably thicker skin than some. :) EVula // talk // // 21:11, 25 July 2010 (UTC)

Jimbo, I'm wondering if the article in question meets WP:GNG and if it does I'm wondering if the policy needs to be fixed. There are millions of restaurants that have similar coverage in local media because they are popular and successful to some degree at PR. I wonder what benefit it is to have articles on them in an encyclopedia. We're not Zagat's, Citisearch or Yelp the last time I checked. I would propose that a majority of articles in Category:Restaurants in the United States by state should not exist here at Wikipedia but maybe my opinion is not shared by others. It strikes me that the type of coverage they get in local media, in the "lifestyle section" type areas of newspapers and magazines, is not a result of the type of notability we are concerned with here but instead local popularity and good PR. Shouldn't there be something other than this type of coverage necessary for a consumer based commercial establishment? I'm curious about your opinion on this.Griswaldo (talk) 13:45, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

WP:CORP applies to any business that has an article on Wikipedia. If they fail to meet the notability guidelines, they shouldn't have an article. ----moreno oso (talk) 13:52, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Does this one meet that policy? If it does, once again I pose the broader question, should it meet that policy? Are restaurant reviews and lifestyle articles about popular eateries the types of coverage we want to use to write encyclopedia articles with?Griswaldo (talk) 14:02, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Let me ask a more specific question. Are restaurant reviews considered news, and given the answer to that how should they be considered when we talk about things like "significant coverage" and notability criteria?Griswaldo (talk) 14:08, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
It's not up to me to decide policy at that level of scale, and so I offer only a general opinion. I think that having such articles is not within the scope of Wikipedia for a number of reasons, more or less along the lines that Griswaldo has outlined. It should be noted, since it accidentally and foolishly made headlines a few years ago, that I started the entry Mzoli's, but I did so on the premise that the restaurant is culturally interesting, as it has been popular with both whites and blacks in a South African township, and because of various complexities surrounding its impact on the community.
A quite nice local wine bar, unless it has some wider impact, isn't really the same thing.
There are a number of reasons we might not want such articles - the article we have now is a case in point - it reads like an advertisement for the restaurant, and having lots and lots of these would surely invite lots more local businesses to try to get an article in Wikipedia. This will lead to a lot of difficult maintenance issues, etc.
On the other hand, it can be argued, and surely will be argued, and there are valid points here, that as long as there is coverage in reliable sources, why not have it? If, as in this case, all the coverage is favorable, so that all one can really say about the restaurant is that it seems delightful, then so be it. (Note well: I don't think anyone is arguing that this is a restaurant like El Bulli which is famous for having a major impact on how people think about cuisine, etc.)
I think this is a discussion worth having.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 14:41, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Article is also in the queue to receive DYK hook, wiki front page publicity.Off2riorob (talk) 14:54, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
I started a discussion here as well -Wikipedia_talk:Notability_(organizations_and_companies)#Restaurant_notability. The first response has been that the article fails WP:CORP because the coverage is all local and regional. The fact that it is in line for Did You Know seems highly suspect to me. The fact that any restaurant would be in line for DYK as a general item of interest, and not in relation to a significant news item, seem completely ridiculous. How is that not simply PR being done on our part? This is exactly the kind of thing that is troubling me.Griswaldo (talk) 15:06, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
I agree with you completely. I just took a quick look to try to figure out where to object to it appearing in DYK until some issues are resolved, but I couldn't figure it out. (I've never had anything to do with the DYK process. Do you know where I should object?) My view is that this DYK listing should at a minimum be delayed by a couple of weeks - this isn't a "timely" issue and reflecting on it will be a good thing. I will ask Cirt on his talk page if he will support this delay.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:26, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
Hooks been removed Off2riorob (talk) 15:32, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

Original point

Jimbo, I have to say that I'm still a little bit concerned about the reception that Njsustain received when s/he tried to take on this matter originally. I know you are not the enforcer of behavioral rules around here but I wanted to make this comment out loud because the original discussion was about that reception. Njsustain has probably learned something about better ways to handle these types of issues but it is very disheartening to see several admins on AN/I overlook the very clear issues with the entry to the benefit of a fellow admin. Njsustain clearly had a very relevant gripe here, and it would be good to know that admins hanging around AN/I will evaluate these things a bit more thoroughly before jumping to their buddy's defense. I hope they are also learning from this incident as I'm sure Nj is. Cheers.Griswaldo (talk) 19:09, 26 July 2010 (UTC)

The problem is, people have different thresholds for what constitutes civility. I have a box on my userpage telling people they are free to swear and curse as much as they desire, because I understand that people sometimes need to vent. I don't mind profanity at all, but there are those who do, and it's sometimes hard to tell who'll be offended by what. If someone told me that my work on an article was a "pile of goddamned shit", I wouldn't have any problem with it as long as they could point to a reson why. I may disagree, but at least I know where they're coming from. Others don't take to that so kindly, so it's a bit confusing. As to calling someone a dick, I suppose if you have someone who hasn't read WP:DICK that it could be seen as offensive, but as someone who's only been around for 5 months, I quickly picked up on the fact that saying someone is a dick on Wikipedia isn't the same as saying that in real life. But that's just my take. The Blade of the Northern Lights (talk) 20:42, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
I'm less concerned about the "dick" comment than the hostility minus any real attempt to look into the situation (the second part especially).Griswaldo (talk) 21:35, 26 July 2010 (UTC)
@EVula, According to WP:DICK, "Telling someone "Don't be a dick" is usually a dick-move — especially if it's true. It upsets the other person and it reduces the chance that they'll listen to what you say." So it makes yourself a DICK if you have called Njsustain a dick, according to the essay that you have used to call him a dick!
@Jimbo: What kind of essays or policies are these things? Are we going to have also WP:ANUS, WP:PUSSY and WP:TIT in the near future?--Policy writer (talk) 02:05, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
Read WP:BEANS- now that you've said that, someone will do it. The Blade of the Northern Lights (talk) 02:44, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
And now you're a dick for remarking that I'm a dick for saying that Njsustain was acting like a dick. (and now I'm a dick yet again for remarking on this fact) This is a fun game to play. EVula // talk // // 00:16, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

Internet used to be run by thick skinned elephants. Nowadays it's Eternal September: as more people come online , we have more PFY's throwing out much more profanity than they used to, and also much thinner skinned people coming online too. Ye Olde Elephants tend to flock to new innovations, and were the first to populate wikipedia, hence some of our older users and policies use more colorful language than the newer ones. --Kim Bruning (talk) 13:45, 27 July 2010 (UTC) goshdangit!

These sweeping generalizations are preposterous. I've been on the net since '86. Just because I don't use middle school locker room language and expect others not do so either in polite conversation, doesn't mean I am thin skinner nor a "PFY" just a gentleman (or if were applicable, a lady). Being around WP or the net a while doesn't mean it becomes okay to use impolite language. It's still rude, whether you are used to it or not.Njsustain (talk) 20:44, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
But that's the point; just because it's rude to you doesn't make it rude to everyone else. I don't consider profanity an issue, and use it quite freely at times; all it means is that you and I think differently. The problem with civility is that it's such a subjective term, and it's not possible to discuss certain things/behaviors without offending people. I do tone my language down around users I don't know; however, I wouldn't think twice about saying someone was acting like a dick if I thought so, because I can't imagine that it offends too many people (obviously it offends you, I just wouldn't have assumed that). Besides, WP:DICK is somewhat humorous (at least in my view), so I'd actually consider it a softer way of pointing it out to someone. The Blade of the Northern Lights (talk) 23:12, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
No, that's not the point. WP is meant for everyone to read, and to edit. It is meant for the general public, and therefore you should act (i.e. use language) that is appropriate for when you are dealing with the general public, not language that is appropriate for when you are hanging out with your buddies, or are in the locker room, or are in your RL workplace where whatever standards of language have developed and are understood by everyone. When you are dealing with the general public, in order to be polite you must refrain from profanity, which is considered rude in that venue, whether you believe you were being rude or not. In any case, what is the point of using this language? Is "You're [acting like] a dick" really a helpful, rational conclusion, or is it just name calling? Would the manager of a restaurant tell a customer, "Well, I'm sorry you didn't you like your service, but you are being a dick"? No, he can say what is the case, "Well, I'm sorry you didn't like your service, but you changed your order four times and are being unreasonable in your expectations." Using profanity doesn't help the situation, and telling people they are "thin skinned" for not believing it is appropriate is immature and just fans the flames. If one believes there is as different etiquette which has developed in WP, one that is quite different from what is considered appropriate when dealing with the general public, and one that permits the leaders (administrators) to use profanity towards users as a way of dealing with issues, then, IMO, you don't "get" what WP is about or for, are unable to deal with people in a manner which leads to solving problems, and, frankly, Mr. Wales has clearly stated it's inappropriate. And, quite frankly, to me, it seems more like admins are backing up other admins for the sake of backing up admins/buddies rather than to solve problems and/or establish standards which lead to solving problems. The purpose of administrators is to allow editing to occur more smoothly and improve WP, not to create an aristocracy of editors who can say, write, and do whatever they want. Njsustain (talk) 16:15, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
But, we don't bend ourselves to conform to your views on profanity. Walking into Wikipedia is to walk into a vast conglomeration of voices, personalities, and mannerisms. Just as you would expect in any other generalized social space. If you go in to such a space not expecting to be occasionally offended, then quite frankly you're gonna be in for a bit of a course correction. Tarc (talk) 16:43, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
They're not my views (exclusively), they are society's views, and when it involves people in positions of authority, such as administrators here, the ante is upped. They are expected to behave more appropriately, not make excuses for behaving less so. Again, telling people they need a "course correction" is being rude and further fanning flames, not trying to solve problems.Njsustain (talk) 17:03, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Not my society, it isn't. Just thicken your skin a bit and move on. Tarc (talk) 17:05, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
I don't deny that not all societies are the same, but why do you get to decide who needs to be more polite and who needs to have a thicker skin? It seems to me Mr. Wales has already drawn the line on the other side of calling people "dicks" (as does the "WP: DICK" standards). Maybe it's you who should think about using more appropriate language on WP. (For the record, my "society" is the United States, which has a rather uniform standard for what is appropriate language when dealing with the general public.) Njsustain (talk) 17:10, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
I do use profanity in public, and I honestly don't give a fuck- I live in the US as well, and that's never stopped me. And I'm no admin here, I just joined in early March. Since when is "dick" profane? I'd JDI and move on. And by the way, you should read WP:Argumentum ad Jimbonem. The Blade of the Northern Lights (talk) 19:29, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Your profanity and pointing out a littany of "rules" in attempt to state your case speaks for itself. I don't (and no one else does) need WP rules to know what or who is flagrantly inappropriate and impolite. on WP or in public, but if you think it's appropriate, and only if you think it's appropriate for me to say, then please do STFU, MYOB, TCBY, etc. And frankly, "IDGAF" what you do in public, and what *you* do doesn't make something right or wrong. Some people go aroung robbing people, kicking punching people, or raping people. That doesn't make those practices appropriate. Your everyday language may not be illegal (actually, it is in some cases and places) but is inappropriate, and shouldn't be the standard for WP just because it doesn't bother you. Additionally, whether "dick" is considered profane or not, it is still rude and pointless in the discussions here at WP. Njsustain (talk) 19:43, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Can we just agree to disagree here? I think we've all got better things to do, like building the encyclopedia, than to keep beating this dead horse. No one's changing anyone's language patterns here, so lets just back off... and get back to the important parts of Wikipedia. The Blade of the Northern Lights (talk) 20:40, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
I agree that we disagree, but this isn't just about what is or isn't appropriate language (which we supposedly or hopefully learn in kindergarten or sooner). I wasn't just called a dick by a random person over a run of the mill editing matter, I was called a dick (or that I "acted like one"... whatever, as if that makes a difference) by an administrator/bureaucrat in response to another administrator who had a conflict of interest (not necessarily in the article, but in my suggestion that that article may have had a NPOV or COI) asking that another administrator look into my so-called "disruptive behavior." Is this the way that conflicts should be appropriately handled by the leaders of WP? No, it was a totally uncalled for response. A person admits he needs someone to see how a situation can be revolved, and profanity, or at least, less than "smooth" language is used in the attempt to do so? That's not how leaders should act. I admire Mr. Wales, not because he is the "owner" of WP, but because he handles this and other situations not as a polititian, but politely and equitably in a manner that is directed at solutions, not pointless accusations -- my original edit was an attempt towards a solution toward improvement, even if it wasn't originally perceived as such by all. I DON'T expect everyone on WP or in society in general to act and talk like we are at the Ladies' Wednesday Afternoon Garden Party, but I DO expect leaders to act appropriately and civilly, especially when they are trying to address a dispute, supposedly objectively. I didn't see that happening in this case, and in fact felt it flew in the face of the entire administrative system on WP. So, yes, I do think it is an issue that needs looking at, and no, I don't think I'm beating a dead horse.Njsustain (talk) 20:52, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
I'll say this much; if I ever interact with you in the future, I'll make it a point to avoid profanity. It does say on my talkpage that I'll tone down my language on request. That much I can say; beyond that, I'm not committing to anything, and I don't think you'll get much more out of anyone else. Maybe I'm wrong, but that's what I'm guessing. The Blade of the Northern Lights (talk) 02:16, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
See my comment above; I consider there to be a big difference between saying you are a dick and saying that you're acting like a dick (specifically, the former is a direct insult, while the latter is merely a personal opinion). Sorry if you're offended by the wording of my remark, but I stand by my assessment of your behavior; I'll see your WP:DICK (er, wait, what?) and counter with WP:SPADE. I could have had a bit more tact in what I said, but I didn't, and there's not a damn thing I can do about it now.
I also don't consider what I said to be particularly profane, though as it's been pointed out, profanity is sometimes in the ear of the beholder... er, behearer? Eh, whatever, you get the point. :) EVula // talk // // 00:16, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Yes, thanks for bringing up WP: SPADE. So, explain why was it okay for you to call me a d*ck because I was calling a spade a spade? Many people, including Mr. Wales have stated that the piece in question looks like (or just outright is) an ad, spam, puffery, etc., but for my big "crime" of attempting to point that out and request a discussion on the matter (even if this newbie regarding such procedures pulled some of the wrong levers when doing so), I am a "d*ck"? It seems to me my real crime for which I was accused was calling a spade a spade that happened to involve an editor who was also an administrator. For that I am [acting like] a "d*ck"???
Also, conveniently, the WP: SPADE states: "Users too often cite policies, like our policy against personal attacks and our policy against incivility, not to protect themselves from personal attacks, but to protect their edits from review." Forgive me for not having read all of these rules... they constitute an encylopedia unto themselves... but I don't need to read tomes of WP philosophy and become a virtual "WP Rules Lawyer" to see what is clearly inappropriate. However, this quote succinctly states what has happened here: someone was trying to cover his tracks by bringing up a bunch of rules and accusing me of utter incivility. One can admit it and let us move on to real issues, or stand behind one's buddies no matter what through rationalizations and namecalling.Njsustain (talk) 17:01, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Njsustain, you were acting like a dick upon reviewing the AN/I. Being told you're acting like a dick when you know you're acting like a dick must be annoying, sure, but don't act like a dick in the first place and you won't get told you're a dick. I wouldn't say that it was uncivil of EVula at all, just relax. Worse things have happened. -- Jack?! 00:56, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

Distortions and bias in scientific coverage

Everytime I come across articles on controversial science subjects I am astounded to see how distorted and disparaging Wikipedia's coverage is about minority viewpoints and the people who espouse them. One example is user:keepcalmandcarryon's ongoing campaign to disparage biographical subjects like Philip E. Johnson, who questioned the HIV-AIDS connection. He misrepresents sources, for example this 1995 letter shows that the subject signed onto the opinion that [5] "Other independent researchers should examine the validity of the so-called "AIDS tests," especially when these tests are used in Africa and Southern Asia, to see if they reliably record the presence of antibodies, let alone live and replicating virus." But it's being used to state that "HIV tests do not detect HIV". Where does it say that? Is questioning a connection the same as saying it does not exist? And why is the present tense being used for an opinion stated in the mid-90s? Here is the article before his disortions were added which I think is quite clear [6].

Of course anyone seeking to correct the subtle distortion and disparagement used to advance favored POVs is labeled as a fringe nutjob and attacked. Frankly, if Wikipedia can't do a better job of abiding by its own BLP policies I wonder if it should be shut down.

The problem of the William Connolleys and the Mastcells who use the encyclopedia to advance their personal beliefs and abuse their roles as admins and editors is widespread. Even dispute tags and citation needed tags from controversial content are removed, and the noticeboards are abused to go after those making an effort to make the accounts accurate.

In the Peter Duesberg article they've gone as far as reordering the chronology of his career so the article focuses almost exclusively on his controversial views on AIDS. I have no objection to being clear and straightforward about controversies and criticisms, they are certainly missing from much of our political coverage, but outright lying and distortions of this sort, misrepresentations of what is in sources, and maligning of unpopular subjects is beyond the pale. There should be zero tolerance for editors and especially admins who engage in these pursuits or aid them in any way. I have never had cause to doubt the HIV-AIDS connection and it certainly represents what I consider a fringe viewpoint, now more than ever, but we shouldn't lie about what kind of opinions those questioning consensus views held or seek to disparage and misrespresent the facts about their careers. I would appreciate your suggestions on how to address this serious problem on Wikipedia. The denialist article was a good example of how terms are being defined in a selective way and then used in other articles to disparage subjects, although I see now it has been improved a bit. Freakshownerd (talk) 21:03, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

I'm happy to report that after the posting of this comment Mastcell has made some needed improvements to Duesberg's article. But the difficulty of a good faith editor trying to get these widespread problems addressed remains, and the tacticcs of obstruction and collusion need to be exposed to the light of day. Freakshownerd (talk) 21:18, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
Actually, I made those changes before you posted here, as the timestamps indicate. You've already opened two threads on WP:BLP/N (here and here), edit-warred aggressively and without justifciation on multiple articles, thrown around an increasingly aggressive series of attacks on everyone who disagrees with you (which, at present, is basically everyone you're interacting with), filled article talk pages with attacks on other editors in lieu of content discussion (here, here), berated me for a "BLP violation" on an article I don't think I've ever even edited ([7]), charged your fellow editors with "despicable lies and distortions", and now ended up here at the forum-shopper's final stop. And that's only in the past 6 hours or so. Please, for everyone's sake, chill out a little. MastCell Talk 21:28, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
I am raising these issues because they are widespread. You helped fix one small part of them finally, but continue to obstruct other improvements even in instances where you acknowledge the distortions taking place. That's not acceptable. Why is a view someone held in the 1990s being presented in the present tense? Why was a disputed tag removed despite an active debate on the accuracy of the article contents? Why are you standing by and questioning me for pointing out obvious mispresentations of what's in the sources? You're clearly part of the problem, and while I did indeed err in my statement about when your improvement came, I stand by my statement that you are one of the editors (and admins) actively obstructing NPOV coverage of controversial science subjects. Freakshownerd (talk) 21:50, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
Earlier today, at MastCell's suggestion, I added a sentence stating that Phillip Johnson's present position on HIV/AIDS is unknown. Honestly, I consider this just a tad lawyerly (and also unsourced). It's like writing that Barack Obama supported health care reform, but we don't know his current position since he hasn't made a statement on it since Sunday. In fact, a 2009 news source cited in the article attributes the denialist position to Johnson. But I was willing to do it in an attempt to calm the situation at the article. It obviously didn't work. In any case, it seems to be a rather minor issue, and one that's been resolved to Freakshownerd's satisfaction. Keepcalmandcarryon (talk) 22:00, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Here's an example of damaging slander just added by Keepcalmandcarryoh: (Johnson) "has also lamented the presence of Muslims on US university campuses, ascribing to Muslims a chilling effect on free speech."

The actual statement from the source [8] (in response to a question about 9/11) is: "Now we're seeing how the country is almost cringing in fear of these Muslim terrorists from the Middle East. I see professors afraid to discuss the subject because they're afraid of what the Muslim students will do. They're afraid it won't keep the peace on campus. I never thought our country would descend to this level."

It's a clear and intentional distortion and misrespresentation that is absolutely slanderous. And if Keepcalmandcarryon isn't blocked for the pattern of the malicious misrespresentations he's adding to these article subjects, then my point is really made for me, is it not? And please don't accuse me of making legal threats. If he is allowed to distort article content then I hope someone does sue to shut down the propogation of these disgusting lies, but it won't be me files the claim, I can't be bothered. I'm just pointing out the problem in clear and accurate language. Wikipedia is being used to viciously disparage and attack subjects that aren't popular with a group of powerful admins and editors, and nothing is being done to stop them. Freakshownerd (talk) 22:15, 27 July 2010 (UTC)

Notice that I included the entire quote in the citation precisely so Freakshownerd and other editors could confirm it. Johnson states that Muslim terrorists attacked the US and that free speech is chilled on campus because Muslim students are present and professors are afraid of them. Elsewhere in the interview, Johnson states that the US is in the described state of affairs because of the notion that different religions should be given different respect when, in his words, Christianity is the true religion. How is anything I've written a distortion of Johnson's views? Keepcalmandcarryon (talk) 22:25, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
One thing that the editors of articles about religious or idealogical ideas, theories, or beliefs need to remember is that to help the article be more NPOV, the article first needs to describe, without taking a side, how the person, group, or idea views itself. Then, a "criticism" or "controversy" section can be included, but should not be any longer in length than the description section. Cla68 (talk) 22:30, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
I'm not a big fan of that approach, because it creates a he-said, she-said structure. I think it's always preferable to integrate reliable sources into a flowing, coherent narrative as opposed to presenting a sympathetic view first followed by a "criticism" section. Certainly, as a reader, I find that approach much more useful. WP:STRUCTURE and Wikipedia:Avoid thread mode are relevant - while the latter is an essay, I think its (facetious) example is on point. MastCell Talk 22:37, 27 July 2010 (UTC)
MastCell, I would agree with you under any other circumstances. This isn't 1954 and there is generally no need to follow the "Equal Time" guidelines when both commentary and criticism can be made into a coherent narrative and an NPOV BLP, and in which case the amount of both is determined by the amount of information one can reliably source (and not distort) . However, that tactic sometimes fails and I feel it might have here. This subject is a Law professor who in his later years began supporting alternative scientific theories. His biography/notability is not about his work in the field of Law, nor is it his publications or discoveries in the field of the Natural Sciences; His story is his controversial beliefs. Given that, I would in fact advocate a separation of support and criticism as it may or may not be impossible to integrate the two into a BLP that could be considered NPOV. Distortion of sources however, is another matter entirely. Cwill151 (talk) 16:39, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
A minor clarification: this law professor hasn't been "supporting alternative scientific theories", he's been actively promoting theistic realism to replace natural science for the political ends set out in the wedge document. He's known for his politics as much as his beliefs. Wikipedia reports on minority viewpoints while giving due weight to majority views, including showing the majority views of the minority or fringe viewpoints. Particularly pseudoscience. Not always easy, and always likely to attract complaints of "bias" from true believers in the minority view or their sympathisers. . . dave souza, talk 17:51, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

Talk page of User vs. Article

I don't get it. - (talk) 11:20, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

The talk page of a user is used to discuss that user's contributions to Wikipedia, while the talk page of an article is used to discuss that particular article. I hope this helps. The Raptor Let's talk/My mistakes; I mean, er, contributions 14:13, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

"I would personally like to medicate this idiot with a very large right fist..."

Perhaps you have an opinion to offer in this AN/I discussion involving the activities of an admin, WP:NPA, and civility in general? Thanks. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 13:05, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

Any reason why you specifically solicit the opinion of Jimbo in this discussion? Fram (talk) 13:12, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
My guess is that it would have something to do with him being the founder of a website where admins are threatening violence to people. But thats just a guess.--Cube lurker (talk) 13:24, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Jimbo has publicity expressed a personal interest in the general issue of civility on the internet. I don't expect his opinion, if he chooses to express one, will count for more than anyone else's in this particular instance. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 13:27, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Many people have expressed their interest in such things, e.g. by participating in discussions on the policy talk pages of NPA or of CIVIL. You are not contacting any of these. Any reason why you specifically solicit Jimbo's opinion? Fram (talk) 13:36, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
See above. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 13:41, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Let me be absolutely clear on one thing: I think it is absolutely perfectly appropriate for people to come to me with information and concerns about admin misbehavior, and I think Delicious carbuncle for bringing this to my attention. I am concerned, Fram, that you would try to discourage people from contacting me - I can't think of any reasonable basis for doing that. It is important to me that I keep track of what is going on, and it is helpful to me to be pointed to interesting and important discussions of all kinds. Why shouldn't that happen?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 05:11, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
IMHO, Delicious Carbuncle was:
a) trying to make a mountain out of an out-of-context molehill
b) "asking the other parent" when the consensus at ANI was that it was, indeed, a molehill
c) edit warring at WP:NPA to make a point[9][10][11]
--Enric Naval (talk) 05:25, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
Be that as it may, I still would like for people to never discourage others from speaking to me. Considering that I don't intervene at this level, it can't really be forum shopping. It does, however, inform my thinking about things in general to be kept aware of concerns that people have. That's important. :-) --Jimbo Wales (talk) 05:55, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
I'll continue to discourage people to come to you though when it is obvious that they are doing so for canvassing reasons, in the hope of getting an argument from authority. You could easily frequent WP:ANI, WP:AN, and other relevant noticeboards where admin behaviour is routinely discussedn if you want to stay informed. That you don't consider canvassing a "reasonable basis" for concern is in itself telling. You no longer intervene perhaps, but you comment, and people use such comments as having more weight than other people's comments. That may not be how you see it or want it, but it is a reality and the sole reason why some discussions are brought to your attention. Fram (talk) 07:02, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
  • I would suggest that the basis of WP:NPA is respect for others; and perhaps someone who has given their time to improving the encyclopedia should be respected for their efforts, and their unusual lapse in voicing their frustration at a persistent vandal returning to disrupt the project in their accustomed manner, might be shown that respect by not having their intemperate remarks promoted as reason to question both their ability and dedication to the encyclopedia. That same respect should also be apparent that when a majority of commentators opine that there is no grounds for a review of the admin over the one instance, that an appeal to a apparent voice of authority - in the hope of a different opinion - is inappropriate. LessHeard vanU (talk) 21:08, 28 July 2010 (UTC)**Addendum. I have blocked Delicious carbuncle for 24 hours - I have given my rationale at ANI. LessHeard vanU (talk) 21:32, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Wikipedians are real people. They get stressed, annoyed, curse at people. It's obviously an empty threat. Some things shouldn't be taken so seriously. -- Jack?! 01:04, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
I agree with you. A single out-of-character outburst should be noted and forgiven. A pattern of behavior suggests that a break from the project, or finding a new hobby, could be better for everyone. There's no reason to be super uptight about admins sometimes saying the wrong thing - but neither should we accept it as being perfectly ok and thereby empower and forgive behavior that is to the detriment of the encyclopedia. We can both insist on high standards generally, and recognize human frailty. Balance is the key.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 05:14, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for that Jimbo. I'm sure you have heard of Bambifan before now as he is a particulary notorious troll and vandal. PM has been battling this particular vandal for years, and has tried every tool available to him to find some permanent resolution to the problem, including contacting ISPs with abuse reports, rangeblocking half of BellSouth, and even offering to mentor Bambifan. Nothing has made a bit of difference. I fully agree with PM that it is probably time some legal action was taken, but of course that would mean finding out who he really is. Dealing with obsessive people can be very frustrating, in the case of this particular user it can also get exceptionally personal. He will actually create socks to deliberately get the attention of users who have blocked or reported him in the past, like he misses you when your not around. PM is now on a break, and now DC is blocked for trying to edit-war his view of this matter into policy. What sucks is that this sort of chaos is exactly what BF101 wants to happen. If there is anything else that can be done about BF101 in the front office I urge you to do it. Thanks. Beeblebrox (talk) 16:45, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

Slander of biographical subjects

I am sorry to say that a day later individuals remain slandered by willfull distortions and misrepresentation of their comments and views in Wikipedia articles. It is distressing to see that you and admins like Mastcell are willing to stand by while the people who are article subjects are denigrated in this way.

I challenge you to find a reliable source that says Philip E. Johnson wrote that "HIV tests do not detect HIV". This is an utter fabrication. It is also false that he has written that "HIV does not cause AIDS". He questioned the relation between the two in the 1990s and called for further study. His article also includes innaccurate paraphrases of cherry picked quotes taken out of context. Nowhere does Johnson say "the US has lost its strength by relinquishing its faith in the 'true God'" Nowhere does he state a goal of trying to return "Christianity to pride of place in US society." And it's also misleading to say that he says "academics are afraid to discuss certain subjects because they fear Muslim students," when in fact he said that professors were afraid to discuss the subject of Muslim terrorism for fear of how Muslim students will react. In each case we see his words and writings being twisted and distorted, misrepresented, taken out of context, and used to denigrate him and his views.

If you take the BLP policy as well as our other editing policies seriously, I call on you to take swift action to empower good faith editors and administrators to take on this epidemic of attacks on biographical subjects and the misguided editors and admins who are carrying them out and encouraging them. There are many more examples of this kind of distortion and abuse and it needs to stop. Freakshownerd (talk) 15:31, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

This tidbit in the Bradley Manning article is another example: "However, in light of Manning's micro viewpoint of the war, he instead decided he knew better than anyone else and endangered thousands of soldiers lives by leaking the classified information."

Maybe you'll be more responsive when someone subpeona's you? I'm going to keep making you aware of biased, improperly cited, and slanderous content until you respond. Freakshownerd (talk) 18:10, 28 July 2010 (UTC)

The edit to Arrest of Bradley Manning was vandalism, made by an account named Goeatadick11 (talk · contribs) which I've blocked for an obvious username issue. Vandalism of BLPs is a real and ongoing concern, albeit separate from your accusations against good-faith editors. I've invoked pending changes protection on the Bradley Manning article since it is, in effect, a BLP and has been subject to inappropriate editing from new users and IPs. It seems like this is the kind of situation for which pending changes was designed. MastCell Talk 18:37, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Why haven't you taken action to correct the pattern of slanderous misinformation and distortion being included in the Philip E. Johnson article? Do you think it's appropriate for the lie that Johnson wrote that "HIV test do note test for HIV" to stand? Here's a search for Philip E. Johnson and HIV tests don't test for HIV: [12]. Guess what website is the only one containing that information? And of course it's not in the cites added by user:keepcalmandcarryon to falsely suggest it's valid content. Are you suggesting that individuals repeatedly adding lies to articles with bogus citations are acting in good faith? Is that Wikipedia's official stand? Because my conclusion is that administrators who threaten good faith editors trying to clean up BLP violations are guilty of collusion and improper behavior themselves. You are culpable. Freakshownerd (talk) 18:51, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Have you read this article, which is cited in Philip E. Johnson? Once you have, let's discuss this at Talk:Phillip E. Johnson. As an aside, if you're able to reign in the aggressive belligerence, it will be that much easier to discern valid points amidst the sound and fury of your posts. MastCell Talk 19:33, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
Surely you're not suggesting that this passage "The claimed correlation between HIV and AIDS is flawed at an even more fundamental level, however. Even if the "AIDS test" were administered in every case, the tests are unreliable. Authoritative papers in both Bio/Technology (June 1993) and the Journal of the American Medical Association (November 27, 1991) have shown that the tests are not standardized and give many "false positives" because they react to substances other than HIV antibodies. Even if that were not the case, the tests at best confirm the presence of antibodies and not the virus itself, much less the virus in an active, replicating state. Antibodies typically mean that the body has fought off a viral infection, and they may persist long after the virus itself has disappeared from the body. Since it is often difficult to find live virus even in the bodies of patients who are dying of AIDS, Gallo and others have to speculate that HIV can cause AIDS even when it is no longer present and only antibodies are left." can be paraphrased into HIV tests do not test for HIV"? And I see that the same editor has carried out his dishonest smeary attacks at the Kary Mullis page as well. Let's keep this discussion out in the open. Is that section what you're talking about in trying to claim that Johnson has stated that HIV tests don't test for HIV? Do you dispute that they test for HIV by detecting HIV antibodies, antigens, or RNA, rather than the virus itself, which was s omething he noted in questioning how accurate the tests were in detecting the virus itself? Do you support these distortions of what he's actually saying to try to make him look silly? Freakshownerd (talk) 23:11, 28 July 2010 (UTC)
I'm not going to discuss AIDS-denialist talking points with you on Jimbo's talk page. (OK, just one: what do mean when you say HIV tests detect HIV antigens and RNA, not "the virus itself"? What do you think a virus consists of? How do you think viruses are generally detected in medical practice?) If you want to discuss this further, then I'll be happy to do so on the article talk page, which is the appropriate venue. MastCell Talk 04:12, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

It strikes me that this dispute is a routine editing dispute that ought to be easy to resolve. One of the best ways to improve things, when people are concerned that a summary of someone's view is not accurate, is to quote the person directly, or to propose an alternative summary to try to find agreement. On the specific content issue, I think it fairly clear that "HIV tests do not test for HIV" - as a standalone - is not an uncontroversial summary of Johnson's position. But surely there is a summary of his position that can be found readily which both captures the nuance of what he was saying, and yet would satisfy those who would be critical of him. I don't know enough about the history of this particular controversy (I remember reading about it 10 years ago or so) to be able to write a proper summary of his position myself, but I do know that it is very often that case that scientists who take minority positions, particularly when those positions turn out to be wrong in the end, are often caricatured in a way that's unfair.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 05:03, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

Johnson writes that HIV tests detect, at the best, the absence of HIV, i.e., a past, vanquished infection instead of a present virus. He also states that the tests are unreliable. He repeats the point that HIV tests often detect something else. I'm at a loss to understand how the given summary is a caricature or in any way unfair. But I'm also willing to entertain, offer and discuss alternative formulations. Freakshownerd has proposed no such alternatives and appears to prefer accusing me of slander to discussing the sources.
I'm also at a loss to understand how "routine editing dispute" applies when an editor passes 3RR repeatedly; accuses others of lying, distortion, slander and all manner of nefarious intent; refuses to discuss controversial edits on the talk pages but readily forum shops; and issues a veiled threat about potential subpoenas. It's disturbing to me that nothing has been done to address this behaviour, not even the placement of a single template message on the user's talk page. Keepcalmandcarryon (talk) 15:07, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
Having not read more than the extended quote above, it seems that he does indeed not say HIV tests detect, at the best, the absence of HIV, i.e., a past, vanquished infection instead of a present virus but that he in fact says the tests at best confirm the presence of antibodies and not the virus itself - I am at a loss to explain how a person who otherwise exhibits above average reading comprehension would so easily be able to go from one to the other. I don't know when the extended quote was made, but I can see that around the time of the journal articles he cites there were issues with false positives noted by the CDC. Unomi (talk) 15:40, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
If you want to discuss the difference between false-positive ELISA results (as in the article you cite) and false-positive HIV test results, please stop by my talk page. It's a common error to conflate the two, although the (moderate) complexity of HIV testing has also been intentionally exploited by people with odd ideas about HIV/AIDS.

Re: Jimbo, I think we can reach a consensus representation that will be honest with the reader, fair to the subject, and satisfactory to involved editors (I agree we're not there yet). Personally, though, I'm not going to touch the article with a ten-foot pole until I see Freakshownerd calm down at least a little bit, because I don't think it's worth it until that happens. MastCell Talk 16:53, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

Fair enough, Freakshownerd, are you feeling calmer today? :-) Perhaps we can move forward constructively. I would like to repeat that I've not studied the issue in depth, and so I'm not sure that any formulation from me will be all that helpful, but it doesn't seem on the surface to be that difficult. Would it be ok with everyone to say "Johnson argued that the tests at best confirm the presence of antibodies and not the virus itself" rather than saying "Johnson argued that HIV tests don't test for HIV"? (And this conversation should probably continue at the talk page of the article rather than here.)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:42, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
I think wording along those lines, or drawn directly from the piece coauthored by Johnson, would be fine. I'll move over to the article talk page to go further. MastCell Talk 19:51, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
As long as an individual's views are accurately represented I'm flexible. I don't know if it's notable that Duesberg said HIV tests looked for antibodies (it seems to be well established and not at all what's in dispute), but I certainly have no objection to it being noted. This seems to be only a piece of peripheral worth in explaining Duesberg's views and arguments, which should be summarized in his article and included along with the key refutations and rebuttals.
Picking out misleading snippets as Keepcarryon has done in a series of edits across a series of articles related to these subjects, as well as misrepresenting what is and isn't in sources, isn't okay. I'm not here to engage in snipe hunts. Keepcalmandcarryon also added a blatant and inflammatory falsehood stating that Philip E. Johnson said he lamented the presence of Muslim students on the Berkeley campus, which is absolutely untrue. That kind of grotesque and dishonest distortion is totally unacceptable and Keepcalmandcarryon needs to stop cherrypicking quotes from primary sources and paraphrasing them innaccurately, as he's been reminded by two independent admins whose assistance he sought out at noticeboards. That's not how articles should be written and it's not appropriate for editors to find statements we don't like and highlight them in articles based on our personal whims.
If people hold stupid views then include appropriate criticism and rebuttals (ie. secondary sources) that expose why they're wrong. There shouldn't be a place in an encyclopedia for dishonest smears and misrepresentations about living people, and an editor who engages in adding them repeatedly should be blocked. Instead of aiding me in making sure our BLP policies are upheld I've been threatened by MastCell, which I don't appreciate. Cleaning up BLPs is a dirty job and editors willing to go through the sources and to help in the effort need to be assisted in every way possible instead of being attacked and labeled fringe nutjobs. I'm more or less sane as far as I can tell and my views on the HIV - AIDs connection, which are none of anyone here's business, should be entirely irrelevant. For what it's worth, they just so happen to be very mainstream. Whether the contrarian arguments are interesting, intriguing, moronic or some combination, articles about the people who expressed them should be treated respectfully and intelligently according to common sense, basic ethics, and the editing rules we are supposed to share and uphold. Freakshownerd (talk) 22:32, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
If you could specify where you believe I've threatened you, ideally with a diff, I will be happy to apologize. On the subject, you left a rather aggressive "warning" on my talk page a few days ago, accusing me of all manner of conduct unbecoming an administrator, and of defaming people. I asked for specifics, but I haven't seen a response. Do you think you could either take the time to flesh out your concerns for me to address them, or failing that, stop constantly making unsupported accusations? That's often a useful first step toward collaboration. MastCell Talk 23:16, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
I take BLP violations very seriously MastCell. Please assist me in stopping the pattern of violations I've noted above and cease coming after editors trying to clean up and balance distorted portrayals of scientists and academics with unpopular viewpoints. That is all I ask, and I think it's quite reasonable. I have no objection to pointed criticisms of theories that have been debunked as long as they come from reliable sources. I do object to editors pushing their preferred POVs by distorting article content, violating editing policies, and smearing biographical subjects with falsehoods. Freakshownerd (talk) 23:32, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

Government Propaganda Organizations and Wikipedia

What is Wikipedia's plan of action for dealing this sort of thing?

"It is believed that such government-sponsored Internet commentators have now become widespread and their numbers could be in the tens of thousands;[34] Bandurski suggests the number may be up to 280,000[32] while The Guardian puts the estimate as 300,000.[35] According to The Guardian, the growth in popularity of such astroturfing owes to the ease with which web 2.0 technologies such as Twitter, Wikipedia and YouTube can be employed to sway public opinion. The BBC reports that special centres have been set up to train China's 'army of internet spin doctors'.[34]"

I also noticed that a user editing an article that I am working on where whitewashing has been occurring editing this article about this other government organization that

"JIDF members also edit content on Wikipedia entries and monitor YouTube and Google Earth. JIDF's measures include reporting Wikipedia editors it claims are anti-Israel, and taking action against entries seen as including one-sided or false accounts of the history of Israel and the Mideast conflict. On Google Earth, it has taken steps to remove photos showing Palestinian villages listed as having been destroyed during the foundation of the State of Israel."

I understand that there is an admin noticeboard, but if some admins are also paid full time government employees it becomes less potent. If a dispute comes about, it would be difficult to take the time for an average Wikipedia user to counteract a gang of full time government employees who continuously make misleading statements that might appear to an uninvolved admin passing through to be true solely because a group of users are making these statements.

I'm not sure if this is what is going on with the article I am currently editing. It's possible that the group is just a group of nationalists attempting to whitewash an article, but it is possible that some of the users are government employees as the wikipedia article relates to alleged international spying although its title has been changed and content about spying has been pushed to the bottom of the page in favor of an almost unnotable tourist trap in a different country. I understand that it important to combat racism, but government and sometimes corporate officials being paid to edit articles clearly fall under the category of propaganda.

Thus, I ask, What is Wikipedia's plan for dealing with government propaganda organizations?

Thank you for your time. Preciseaccuracy (talk) 20:23, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

This, I believe, stands as one of the most pressing issues facing the project today.
--K10wnsta (talk) 21:17, 29 July 2010 (UTC)
Does this have something to do with the claim that WP is a front for the CIA :-) Preciseaccuracy, you just can't handle the heat or understand what collaboration means. Your infatuation with that article is incredible, it might seem that you are representing foreign interests as well. --Shuki (talk) 23:11, 29 July 2010 (UTC)

I am not under government or corporate employment to edit articles on Wikipedia. However, it is possible that I or any other user is under government/corporate employment to edit Wikipedia articles. Does Wikipedia have a plan of action for dealing with this? Anyway, the user above Shuki is one of the editors causing trouble with the article I am working on. He claims along with other users that a tourist trap in China is somehow reasonably connected to Allegations of Israel spying on the United States and that the tourist trap in China should be the focus of an article originally about Suspected Spying . Side note: It's interesting that after months of the Chinese tourist trap section overshadowing the section about spying allegations, only about an hour or two after posting here, the section about the tourist trap has finally been allowed to move from the top to the bottom of the Wikipedia article.Preciseaccuracy (talk) 01:14, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

With all the strikeouts, it's not clear what I'm supposed to be looking into here. I think that our existing processes work reasonably well to enforce neutrality, although of course it can always be a struggle. Because we discourage voting, because we discourage article "ownership", because we have multiple ways for uninvolved editors to be alerted to a dispute and called into it, the system is already designed to be robust to POV-pushers, whether paid or unpaid. Is it perfect? No. Can there be improvements? I'm sure - and encourage conversation about what those improvements might be.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 15:06, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

Is there a specific process to undertake for editing an article where there is likely involvement of a paid corporate or government editors?

I understand that there is an admin noticeboard, but if some admins are also paid full time government employees it becomes less potent. Some users that are government employees could build there way up by editing unrelated articles, but when a key dispute comes up they could enter pretending to be neutral. If a dispute comes about, it would be difficult to take the time for an average Wikipedia user to counteract a gang of full time government employees who continuously make misleading statements that might appear to another uninvolved admin passing through to be true solely because a group of users are making these statements. Preciseaccuracy (talk) 18:46, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

I find this concept to be highly implausible. Yes, lots of things might seem plausible to an admin "passing through" but one of the great things about Wikipedia is that it is not hard to get serious people to take a hard look at almost anything, in incredible detail. If you have a specific example, I'm sure a lot of people would be eager to look into it.
About a year ago, a guy from a human rights organization claimed to me that we had a serious problem with paid operatives in support of Hugo Chavez working to make sure that nothing negative about him is posted in Wikipedia. I asked him for details, including diffs, but nothing ever came of it. I looked carefully at the articles in question, and they looked like just about any contentious area of Wikipedia - i.e. plenty of people on all sides engaged in a vigorous and healthy discussion, and where the use of reliable sources was agreed to by essentially all sides.
Regarding China, it's quite difficult to look at our articles on, for example, Censorship in the People's Republic of China and imagine that an army of hundreds of thousands of Chinese bureaucrats are in control of things.
I think organized advocacy groups of all kinds are certainly something we should think about, but I'm unaware of any very serious problems. You mention JIDF, but I think a cursory look at dozens of articles suggest that, if anything, we have a problem with anti-Israeli bias, not the other way around. (And of course strong advocates of both sides may argue that we're biased simply because we don't present their favored view of the world unrebutted.)--Jimbo Wales (talk) 19:06, 30 July 2010 (UTC)
Well, I am glad that you realize that we "we have a problem with anti-Israeli bias, not the other way around." If one does not know whom to blame in everything, blame Israel, and get away with it. The article in question is full of unconfirmed and/or denied allegations. When it was written first time, it was speedy deleted. The second try hardly survived deletion request with "no consensus" only after it was fully re-written. For some time it was quite. Then User talk:Preciseaccuracy came about. So far the user has made 330 edits, with each and every one of them concerning the article in question. Looks like her only goal is to smear Israel with that article. She runs from one board to another, from one talk page to another, constantly canvasing, assuming bad faith, trying to introduce unreliable sources and so on, and so on. I stopped editing that article and that article's talk page because I felt as I was crashed by a bulldozer, when over and over again I was reported to AN/I by User talk:Preciseaccuracy, and because this article is becoming dirtier and dirtier at the moment. I've seen quite a lot of SPAs, but this is a single article account, and what an account it is! Thanks.--Mbz1 (talk) 03:53, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

For highly contentious political topics, if one posts the article on a community board those users with the strongest political views related to a topic are most likely to respond along with only a few neutral users. The politically motivated users will have more reason to stick with a topic so will stick with it longer than editors who aren't politically invested.

Is there a way that people completely politically uninvolved could be randomly chosen to edit an article. For example, in some situations, instead of having people choose the article they want to edit, some sort of random generator could choose a group people to look at that article. Although, then people might question if the generator is actually random. Anyway, I agree that if one shines more light on the article that could certainly help so I posted the dispute on the neutral point of view board.Preciseaccuracy (talk) 00:38, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

One article, go on, please

Hi Jimbo

(If you have already done some but not updated your stats then I apologise, in advance, for the next sentence lol)

It is the last day of the drive and even though I know you are a very busy person I was hoping you could edit an article for the backlogdrive. It would be really great if you could muscle some of the long list of things you have to do out of the way and find 30 minutes or so to do a few articles. It really would help to show that even those that have such small amounts of time can still manage to make a difference :¬)

Chaosdruid (talk) 01:31, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

No, I absolutely need to do this and thank you for reminding me. I'll be around most of the day today, doing chores at home, packing for an upcoming trip, etc. Can you tell me where I should start?--Jimbo Wales (talk) 17:04, 31 July 2010 (UTC)
Sorry - I didnt see your reply till just now :¬(
If you go to the drive page you can see a summary of articles that need work in the top right corner Wikipedia:WikiProject Guild of Copy Editors/Backlog elimination drives/July 2010
Nice and simple lol :¬)
Sounds like RL has you busy though - there are some really small ones there, I just did one of 436 and one of 850 words. Hope all goes well for you with your packing - don't forget your socks !! I'm off to eat and watch a documentary so am off for an hour but good luck with the editing :¬) Chaosdruid (talk) 18:04, 31 July 2010 (UTC)
Done! I hope people will check my work, as I am not a very experienced copy editor!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 00:13, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
I had a look and you did very well ! it was not an easy article to edit - ones like that take a lot of time due to the grammar, claims and links that need working on. It was a bloody good first copy edit. I particularly like the fact that you had to rename the page :¬)
Thanks for that Jimbo - we did very well overall I think but we should get the newsletter with the final conclusions later today. I fixed the redlinks also.
Chaosdruid (talk) 02:08, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

CK-12 Books

Seeing as you are on the advisory board of the CK-12 Foundation, I would appreciate it if you could forward my concern over the decision at some point in the past few months to change the licensing of the website and all the books produced by this organization to CC-BY-NC-SA from CC-BY-SA. While I had already downloaded the clearly marked, acceptably-licensed PDF versions of the books I am slowly working on transcribing to Wikibooks (CK-12 Books) and uploaded them to Commons, this unfortunate change in course will mean that no new books produced by them will be able to be made available for wider distribution via Wikimedia or purchase through PediaPress. Thank you. Adrignola (talk) 21:49, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I will do what I can!--Jimbo Wales (talk) 22:20, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

FWIW, CK-12's Murugan Pal gave a presentation at Wikimania 2008 ("Federating Wikipedia as Open Educational Resource"), where he also briefly discussed licensing policies and the problem of license incompatibility (e.g. in the parts starting around 12:00 and 15:30 in the video). Regards, HaeB (talk) 15:33, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

Hindi Wikipedia

Somebody care to build on what I've started? Dr. Blofeld - 15:36, 18 July 2010 (UTC) 22:11, 31 July 2010 (UTC)

Sorry, but I don't think many of us here know Hindu (I've read the user pages of most of the active participants) You might have better results going to one of the Hindi related articles and asking for assistance there.--*Kat* (talk) 00:33, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
Just realized that you are referring to the article, not the actual encyclopedia. I should have clicked the link before saying anything. Still, this probably isn't the best place to come for article assistance.--*Kat* (talk) 00:37, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

The reaosn why I came here is that we've been in the news recently about collaborating with google. Google has started with helping translate on Hindi Wikipedia. I thought somebody here might give a damn about it, obviously not. Dr. Blofeld - 15:36, 18 July 2010 (UTC) 13:14, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

Its not that I don't care, its that I don't know a thing about it. Besides, I'm a better editor than writer.--*Kat* (talk) 14:18, 1 August 2010 (UTC)
  • There are no sources that discuss the Hindi Wikipedia that I can find, Blofeld. Even the source that you cited is about the Google translation effort and not about the Hindi Wikipedia per se. (talk) 14:34, 1 August 2010 (UTC)

Dr. Frankenstein, I presume?

GOCE Backlog Elimination Drive Wrap-up

Greetings from the Guild of Copy Editors July 2010 Backlog Elimination Drive. Thanks to all who participated in the drive! Over 100 editors—including Jimbo Wales—signed up this time (nearly triple the participants of the May drive). This benefited the Guild as well as the articles in need of copy editing. You can see from the comparison graphs that we increased the number of completed copyedits substantially. Unfortunately, we were not able to meet our goal of completely wiping out 2008 from the queue. We also were not able to reduce the backlog to less than 6,000 articles. We suspect people were busy with real life summertime things, at least in the northern hemisphere! We were able to remove the months of January, February, March, April, and May from the backlog, and we almost wiped out the month of June. We reduced the backlog by 1,289 articles (17%), so all in all it was a very successful drive, and we will be holding another event soon. We'll come up with some new ideas to try to keep things fresh and interesting. Keep up the good work, everybody!

If you copy edited at least 4,000 words, you qualify for a barnstar. If you edited in the May 2010 GOCE Backlog Elimination Drive, your word totals are cumulative for barnstars (not the leaderboard). Over the course of the next week or two, we will be handing out the barnstars.

GOCE backlog elimination drive chart up to 31 July
  • Eight people will receive The Most Excellent Order of the Caretaker's Barnstar (100,000+ words): Chaosdruid, Diannaa, Ericleb01, Lfstevens, Shimeru, S Masters, The Utahraptor, and Torchiest.
  • Bullock and Slon02 will receive The Order of the Superior Scribe (80,000+).
  • The Barnstar of Diligence (60,000+) goes to Derild4921, GaryColemanFan, kojozone, and Mlpearc.
  • The Modern Guild of Copy Editors Barnstar (40,000+) goes to A. Parrot, AirplanePro, Auntieruth55, Bejinhan, David Rush, and mono.
  • Nobody will receive The Old School League of Copy Editors award (30,000+).
  • The Tireless Contributor Barnstar (20,000+) goes to Backtable, Cindamuse, dtgriffith, Duff, e. ripley, Laurinavicius, NerdyScienceDude, and TEK.
  • The Cleanup Barnstar (12,000+) goes to Brickie, Casliber, cymru lass, December21st2012Freak, Nolelover, TheTito, Whoosit, and YellowMonkey.
  • The Working Man's Barnstar (8,000+) goes to Bsherr, Duchess of Bathwick, HELLKNOWZ, Mabeenot, noraft, Pyfan, and Richard asr.
  • The Modest Barnstar (4,000+) goes to Adrian J. Hunter, Airplaneman, Annalise, Camerafiend, Cricket02, Fetchcomms, Gosox5555, LeonidasSpartan, Paulmnguyen, Piotrus, SuperHamster, Taelus, and TPW.

Gold Star Award

Gold Star Award Leaderboard
Articles Words 5k+ Articles
1. Diannaa (248) Shimeru (200,392) Shimeru/Ericleb01 (13)
2. Slon02 (157) Diannaa (164,960) Chaosdruid (8)
3. GaryColemanFan (101) Chaosdruid (130,630) Derild4921 (7)
4. Torchiest (100) The Utahraptor (117,347) GaryColemanFan/Slon02 (6)
5. Shimeru (80) Ericleb01 (114,893) Bejinhan/The Utahraptor (5)

Coordinator: ɳorɑfʈ Talk! Co-coordinators: Diannaa TALK and S Masters (talk) | Newsletter by: The Raptor You rang?/My mistakes; I mean, er, contributions

Writing Magnifying.PNG

Delivered by MessageDeliveryBot on behalf of The Utahraptor at 18:12, 1 August 2010 (UTC).


Jimmy Wales in August 2006.jpg Barnstar-RoyaltyNobility.png The Founder's Barnstar For support during the Guild of Copy Editors July 2010 Backlog Elimination Drive, Jimbo Wales is presented with this exclusive Founder's Barnstar. --Diannaa (Talk) 17:30, 2 August 2010 (UTC)


Dear Jimbo, I've just seen your response posted a few months ago. You must have developed an interesting set of new skills over the pass ten years which I hope you've been able to gain further enjoyment from, but I also hope that you've not gotten lost for too long in a Wiki-jungle.

In 2001 I thought Wiki was an interesting experiment, and I still do. In fact it is currently virtually an indispensable reference tool for the planet. I also think the basic idea was in a grey area between wanting to be anonymous and being a publishing system like Ted Nelson's Xanadu was went to be. During these ten years a number of dispute and resolution 'systems' have been developed - these are kludges, they are not eloquent or intuitive like the base Wiki concept but they are essential.

I think Wiki needs a users guide/manual.

There is no intuitive guide, there are links to links which people can follow like a rabbit warren, you may find a 'solution' only to be told by a buck-rabbit that you didn't use the intended section of the warren 200 metres away. It's great for the bucks who live there, they have advantage to maintain their POV. Your responses about being "premature" and "not likely to feel as nice as I hope" are well intentioned but said from point of a person for whom the warren seems intuitive when it is not. I've been editing Wikipeia since 2001, I've spent the last three years caught in a series of ugly Supreme Court litigations, I've designed telecommunication networks and done a thousand other things; but I'm not willing or able to spend six months mapping the Wiki jungle which is still growing. I'm quite able to deal with jargon and game rules, but there should be a copy of those rules and the jargon in one place.

Hope that prospective helps, I know somebody somewhere has probably done this but if they have it's lost inside the warren somewhere.Daeron (talk) 01:02, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

See Help:Wikipedia: The Missing Manual. You're right about "lost inside the warren somewhere" though! I knew this was here but it still took me nearly ten minutes to find it :) EyeSerenetalk 07:44, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps there could be a newbie editor's interface? --*Kat* (talk) 08:43, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Or better still, a newbie's toolbar. One that spells it out. Maybe done in a sidebar style, with links to policies in a nutshell, and menus for frequently used templates.--*Kat* (talk) 08:49, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
The main page has a nice link to Wikipedia:Introduction which looks ok at first glance, cunningly hidden as the second line in the top bar, which says "the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit." Suggestions: make the "anyone can edit" phrase bolder; and every article page has "From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia" as a subtitle, could we add the linked phrase "that anyone can edit" to that standard header? Wikipedia: The Missing Manual looks useful for more detailed guidance, I've suggested it be added to Wikipedia:Introduction 2 at the appropriate talk page, Template talk:Please don't change this page. . . dave souza, talk 09:57, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

I've started a project here meant to (a) encourage readers to edit and (b) explain the basics in simple terms. Your thoughts here or on the project talk page would be very welcome. Anthony (talk) 11:08, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Articles for deletion nomination of The Lazarus Effect (film)

Ambox warning pn.svg

I have nominated The Lazarus Effect (film), an article that you created, for deletion. I do not think that this article satisfies Wikipedia's criteria for inclusion, and have explained why at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/The Lazarus Effect (film). Your opinions on the matter are welcome at that same discussion page; also, you are welcome to edit the article to address these concerns. Thank you for your time.

Please contact me if you're unsure why you received this message. John Vandenberg (chat) 07:01, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Looks like a good article and an interesting documentary. The development of drug treatments that have stopped AIDS from being a death sentence and allow people to live with the disease is a pretty remarkable story. I wonder if the developments haven't gotten more play because of the fear of complacency? Freakshownerd (talk) 15:34, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Its always good to watchlist Jimbo's page to sniff out drama.--Milowenttalkblp-r 15:52, 3 August 2010 (UTC)


A lot of the most prolific Wikipedians, or at least many of them, also seem to have a screw loose. But that doesn't mean their work is useless.

— Larry Sanger in Slate (link)

I'd wondered what was rattling. --Hodgson-Burnett's Secret Garden (talk) 23:40, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Darn it! I thought it was money! ~~ Hi878 (Come shout at me!) 23:43, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Not only Wikipedians, but also in all other endeavors throughout history and pre-history. Michael Hardy (talk) 23:43, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Im still waiting for my tax write offs! :D Thelmadatter (talk) 01:25, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Jason Leopold, COI, etc

I agree with your assessment of COI as I, roughly, understand it here. My view has always been if an editors edits are good for Wikipedia, then a COI doesnt matter, if they are bad for Wikipedia, then a COI doesnt help, either way, COI is mostly irrelevant. I am curious what you think of this edit, from a neutrality prospective. Despite what others may think, I do want to write a neutral, factual article, I just dont think that adding a bunch of positive, but inconsequential material is the way to do it. Bonewah (talk) 01:15, 4 August 2010 (UTC)


Have you thought lately about appointing some new admins? Check out File:Active_admins_by_month,_December_2007_to_August_2010.png. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:03, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

I suspect if he did that, the community would be totally up in arms about it. Not a good idea. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe · Join WikiProject Japan! 14:56, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
He reserved the right to do it a long time ago. Of course a few people would be up in arms about it, but people get up in arms about everything. I doubt very many people would really be upset about new admins being appointed. It's like complaining at someone for sweeping your sidewalk. — Carl (CBM · talk) 15:32, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
My mathematics teacher told me, beware of graphs that do not start at zero. Off2riorob (talk) 15:35, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
Well, given how people reacted to his unilaterally removing images he didn't like from Commons and whatnot, I don't think it would be wise of him to make more unilateral moves. ···日本穣? · 投稿 · Talk to Nihonjoe · Join WikiProject Japan! 15:55, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
Do you honestly think people aren't going to complain about the block button being handed to people without community RFA? If you honestly believe that I question your connection to the community.--Cube lurker (talk) 16:00, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
Wait. Are we really talking about handing someone the admin tools without community consensus? I honestly don't think this is a good idea. Sure, we're a bit short on administrators, but that doesn't mean we have to hand the admin tools to somebody without reaching a consensus first. Even though it may sound like it, I'm not one of the people that's going to be up in arms about this. If it happens, it happens. I'm simply opposed to the idea. I won't make a big deal out of it if it happens. The Raptor You rang?/My mistakes; I mean, er, contributions 16:05, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
I don't have a problem with it, so long as I'm appointed as God Emperor of Dune. I must control all of the spice! GregJackP Boomer! 18:51, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
  • Just because there are fewer active admins right now doesn't automatically mean we need more, or that we need to resort to Admin-Draft-By-Jimbo to get more.--Milowenttalkblp-r 20:31, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
We just need to encourage people to apply for adminship, that's all. SilverserenC 20:33, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
The problem is that RFA, as it currently works, discourages people from applying for adminship. Deli nk (talk) 20:35, 4 August 2010 (UTC)


That's right. Our expectations for people applying for adminship are much higher than expectations for actual admins. We need to decrease our expectations for people applying for adminship. I mean, we can't expect the perfect admin, can we? The Raptor You rang?/My mistakes; I mean, er, contributions 20:40, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Excuse me Greg, but I think that I would like to be God Emperor of Dune. Or at least, I want to be Supreme Bashar for the Bene Gesserit. ~~ Hi878 (Come shout at me!) 20:47, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
"The prophet is not diverted by illusions of past, present and future." If appointed God Emperor of Dune, you may be Supreme Bashar. On a side note, the entire Admin process needs to be evaluated. In addition to RfA being a joke and a popularity contest, there is no realistic oversight of admins and absolutely no realistic way to get rid of bad ones. GregJackP Boomer! 22:39, 4 August 2010 (UTC)
Thank you God Emperor of Dune, that's exactly what needs to be done! I keep pushing for this- something similar to the civilian review boards that exist in cities across the nation that "police the police". MANY admins DO consider themselves to be police and if they want to act like it then we need to act as the "tax-paying citizens" of this Community and tell them no more hiding behind each other. No admin wants to strip another admin because then it makes it easier for themselves to lose the title regardless of whether they think they will or not (its the same psychological concept for why US senators vote for each other's pork products, "I vote for their useless bridge that doesnt help my constituents and he votes for something that I want that DOES help my constituents and we both get reelected"). Admins state over and over again that "oh, then all admins will be vulnerable to grudges and discontented editors who dont like our tough decisions". I say- oh well, if you werent doing anything wrong then you shouldnt be scared. Non-admins on a review board to actually deliver REAL decisions to overrule bad admins or block or desysop would make it easier and eliminate the "us-versus-them" mentality that many (including me) have. Perhaps no one wants to be an admin because too many are concerned with "there's a conflict! let me step in without knowing anything, warn someone on each side for something and show my special powers and off I go to the next one! maybe i'll even block someone for incivility!" but takes no effort to actually SOLVE the dispute. Who wants to be an admin when all they do is go around and try to be a policeman/teacher and treat us like children? No one wants that job. Make them understand they ARE nothing more than janitors to HELP us and do whate WE need them to do then you will see some thinking that might be a cool thing to be. And we'll have admins that actually arent asses.Camelbinky (talk) 23:37, 4 August 2010 (UTC)

Might Want to take a look

I don't think the following users have any business on here:

KnightsoftheWhiteCamelia KuKluxKicken KuKluxKleagle —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:29, 5 August 2010 (UTC)

All blocked. You'll normally get a quicker response at WP:UAA. Rodhullandemu 01:35, 5 August 2010 (UTC)
Oh, that reminds me, can someone check UAA right now? It's backlogging. Access Denied(t|c|g|d|s) 01:37, 5 August 2010 (UTC)

The Register is a tabloid

I heard that somewhere, and I agree. Why then are we allowing articles like Gharlane of Eddore (pen name) to exist? It relies solely on Usenet posts, blog memoirs and a citation in The Register as its source of information. Interestingly enough, this is a WP:BLP article but refers to a person by their pen name. Is that excuse to skirt around our living person's policy these days? I'm quite curious. JBsupreme (talk) ✄ ✄ ✄ 20:47, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Is that some kind of outing using non reliable sources? That article has multiple issues in need of attention from an experienced editor that understands the topic, although anyone can see the poor quality of the citations. It is a biography but he allegedly died in 2001. Very recently closed AFD didn't get a lot of attention. Off2riorob (talk) 21:03, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
It's kinda hard to violate WP:OUTING for someone who isn't a Wikipedia editor. That said, JBsupreme should take this up on WP:RSN. I don't think Jimbo is going to give a definitive answer to him/her. Also, I do wish that AfD had been relisted, instead of closed. Ah well.— The Hand That Feeds You:Bite 21:38, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
The Register is not a very strong citation, our article refers to it as, an opinion website that frequently uses sarcasm and satire in its articles, but for what it is supporting there it is just about ok. It is possible to out someone who wrote under a pen name but this doesn't seem to be the case here, I have cleaned the citations and he just seems to be a usenet person notable in that corner of the world, so it could use a couple of additional citations to support his wider notability and some of his personal details but I don't see any major issues. Off2riorob (talk) 21:57, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Mr. Potter is long deceased now, and as someone who knew him (and many of my friends knew him much closely than I did) the article is as far as I remember things accurate and reasonable. BLP doesn't directly apply, though avoiding embarrassing people's families is still a reasonable philosophical guideline. The article is accurate, however.
The Register isn't the greatest of sources, but they have a history of properly editorially quality-checked factual news coverage of internet events interspersed with the activism and advocacy. This was by a news author and was a factual report. It's consistent with the other sources. It's consistent with my memory of Gharlane/David Potter and his activities and death.
Put the stick down, JB. You're going to hit yourself in the noggin if you keep waving it around this much. Georgewilliamherbert (talk) 22:22, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
I'm going to have to pick up the cluestick instead and hand it over to you, George. If this was a personal friend/acquaintance of yours, you have no business editing the article as there is a conflict of interest which should have been fully disclosed from the get go. I'm disappointed.  :( JBsupreme (talk) ✄ ✄ ✄ 22:33, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
I have not edited the article contents. I reverted your deletion of sources, which a number of users have unanimously agreed was not helpful. No COI issue is relevant here. Georgewilliamherbert (talk) 22:41, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
You reverted my removal of a tabloid "source" (The Register) from a biographical article and thought that was helpful? JBsupreme (talk) ✄ ✄ ✄ 22:46, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Your opinion that the Register is uniformly an untrustable "tabloid source" has been uniformly rejected by others who have weighed in on the subject. Nobody agrees so far that it's never a valid source. If you want to challenge the particular article, or establish a precedent that it's truly never reliable even when it's covering news events with reasonable editorial control and fact-based news reporting, you should take this to RSN and get an opinion.
You've been told a bunch of times that RSN is the right thing to do. Instead, you went back to the article talk page and badmouthed it after the AFD went the other way, and then came here to Jimmy's page. Neither of these is helpful nor will either of them replace doing the right thing: Take it to RSN and discuss it there.
I suspect that what will happen is that the opinion that I and all the others have made, which is that the Register's reliability is contextual, and is valid for pure-play news coverage in their areas of expertise, will be supported. But that's the venue for you to go to find out. Jimmy can't help you on this, though he may have an opinion on it. Georgewilliamherbert (talk) 22:52, 3 August 2010 (UTC)


Maybe it wouldn't hurt to remember what a tabloid is: it's a newspaper that is physically substantially smaller, in length and width of pages, than a broadsheet newspaper. Michael Hardy (talk) 23:16, 3 August 2010 (UTC)

Thank you! I was wondering if someone was going to pull that one out! :) ~~ Hi878 (Come shout at me!) 23:21, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Well, there are tabloids and tabloids. Red tops, although in tabloid format, are a different issue, because their POV tends to be populist, somewhat lurid and perhaps not sourced as well as we would prefer; of the remaining UK tabloids, the Daily Express and Daily Mail tend to maintain a particular political stance which perhaps would be interpreted by a cynic as "bias". But even The Times and The Guardian have reduced their format sizes in recent years, but are not tarred with the "tabloid" pejorative label. Bottom line is that it depends on the *general* quality of the journalism, separating fact from opinion, and if necessary, taking individual reports of their own merits (if any). However, if this is to go anywhere, it should go to the individual articles involved, or if wider principles are involved, to WP:RSN for discussion, although that could not result in a prescriptive decision, and nor should it. Rodhullandemu 23:30, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Along the same lines, "tabloid" is not a useful label. In the US it tends to indicate newspapers like the National Enquirer (which has broken some stories, but mostly trades in empty gossip) and News of the World, which simply makes up stories. In the UK it refers more to the format, and the newspapers using that format vary in quality. So I think that saying something is a "tabloid" doesn't convey any specific issue and can be confusing.   Will Beback  talk  23:41, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Please, Rod, the Times is apparently "compact", though there have been questions about quality at times, and the Grauniad is Berliner (format) – a nice pic on that page shows the various sizes, presumably taken when the Graun was still a broadsheet. Ah, the pedantic fun of paper sizes – I was always fond of double elephant. . . dave souza, talk 23:45, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
I wasn't labelling The Times as a tabloid as such, merely downsized, although I do resile from putting money into Rupert Murdoch's pocket unless I can avoid it- which I do. Rodhullandemu 23:52, 3 August 2010 (UTC)
Fully agree, but always thought "tabloid" was used for the unreliable gossipy end of the market in the UK. To my mild surprise, | Newspaper Types and Formats says "In the UK, tabloid newspapers have such a poor journalistic reputation that broadsheet-quality newspapers which have decided to take on a tabloid size have instead called the format ‘compact’ in order to avoid the many negative connotations of tabloid newspapers – connotations that those same broadsheets likely helped to reinforce in the past." @ Will Beback, at first I thought you were suggesting that The News of the Screws was a U.S. title as well as a well known UK tabloid, but apparently not. One all of our own, at least until 1969 when Rupert Murdoch got hold of it and maintained its traditional standards of journalism. . dave souza, talk 16:59, 5 August 2010 (UTC)

To be clear, when I use the term "tabloid" I mean unreliable source and am not making any reference to print size/format. JBsupreme (talk) ✄ ✄ ✄ 06:20, 5 August 2010 (UTC)

Can we move this to WP:RSN? --Cyclopiatalk 17:50, 5 August 2010 (UTC)

In my opinion, The Register is absolutely worthless as a source, full stop, in all circumstances. It should never be used to make or justify any kind of claim, controversial or otherwise, on any matter of any kind.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 20:22, 5 August 2010 (UTC)
Uh, why? (I'm neutral on the issue, even if I read it from time to time; I'm just curious of what is behind such a strong statement). --Cyclopiatalk 20:25, 5 August 2010 (UTC)
Long experience with their generally low standards. They should be regarded as a satire/humor site, not a news site. They write outrageous things to get attention. Their reporting on things that I have first hand knowledge of has been absolutely worthless. There is no good reason to trust them at all. Are Wikipedians "Khmer rouge in nappies"? Do we have black helicopters circling in Utah? This is a glorified blog that prints absolute nonsense on a regular basis. Any news that can be found there is generally regurgitated from actual reliable sources which should be used instead, or is likely to be satirical editorializing of no merit.
Let me give a random example pulled from their site right now, an example that has nothing to do with anything I have personal knowledge of: "Airline ejects passenger for being hungry" - Is the story true? Well, they link to a blog of someone who says it happened to him. But would this merit inclusion in our article on United Airlines? Absolutely not, it is typical tabloid tittle-tattle written and given the most outrageous headline possible. No one from United was asked for a comment. No actual newspaper picked up the story. It's pure and total crap, through and through, in terms of being a reliable source.
This is not a cherry-picked example. This is what they do. While it may be lovely good fun (not in my opinion, but some people enjoy outrageous headlines, no matter how misleading and dishonest they may be) but it is not a reliable source, and it is absolutely not acceptable for Wikipedia.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:01, 5 August 2010 (UTC)
With all due respect - they do have and have had writers who are decent reporters and editors who are decent editors, by news organization standards, and they have repeatedly run news coverage on the internet that other organizations didn't bother with.
Anyone who uses them without looking closely at what they're saying and which writer wrote it is asking for trouble, but the Wikipedian general consensus disagrees with you here, Jimmy. Georgewilliamherbert (talk) 21:06, 5 August 2010 (UTC)
I stand by my views firmly. Anything of value should be sourced to a real source. Anything sole-sourced to The Register should be removed immediately.--Jimbo Wales (talk) 21:33, 5 August 2010 (UTC)
If something is worth including in Wikipedia then it will be possible to find (reliable) sources other than The Register and those sources should be used in preference to The Register. If The Register is the only source then the matter is very probably not worth including in the encyclopedia in the first place. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 18:00, 6 August 2010


Do you think that perhaps the recent publicity over wiki-leaks, first from their leaking large amounts of material regarding the Afghan war and now over their founder being accused of molestation in Sweden (or rape, I havent been following it too closely), will perhaps have some negative association for the Wikimedia Foundation? We know it isnt assocated with the Foundation but with so many different projects like Wikisources, Wikibooks, Wikitionary, Wikipedia, is not possible that the average person would assume that Wikileaks is assocated with the Foundation as well? Has anyone personally heard of any possible confusion by "lay-persons" outside the project?Camelbinky (talk) 01:22, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

  • Well, yes. Jimbo himself has said that people think that he (rather than the Wikimedia Foundation) is reponsible for Wikileaks. What can be done about it? Just keep explaining it's nothing to do with Wikipedia or the Wikimedia Foundation or Jimbo, I guess. (talk) 02:55, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
It could also be argued that some of the associations will be positive and beneficial. Both organizations have some overlap in efforts to provide public access to information and there are certainly some interesting similarities and differences between the work and approaches of both organizations. Freakshownerd (talk) 03:05, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
I have created essay " is not part of Wikipedia or Wikia" (with shortcuts: WP:Wikileaks or WP:NOTLEAKS) which can be expanded to explain more. That WP essay links to The Daily Telegraph article above, as a source. For linking from other websites, that essay has URL: for remote linking. Feel free to expand the text of the essay, as needed. -Wikid77 (talk) 13:04, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
Wikipedia Review has an interesting discussion of the issue - they claim there is a connection between Wikipedia and Jimbo; Jimbo and Wikia; Wikia and some sites named "Wikileaks" and so suggest that some degree of confusion might be self-inflicted. I don't care enough to verify their claims; but this does shed light on the question asked elsewhere on Jimbo's talk page ("does Wikipedia Review exist for the purposes of Wikipedia"). - WAS 4.250 (talk) 14:08, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
Camelbinky, you would do well to remember that in some situations Jimbo is not always able to reveal the full extent of his involvement with certain activities. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 17:00, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
Uh, what? I'm pretty sure Jimbo is in fact in no way associated with Wikileaks but um, ok... whatever you meant by that post I'm sure made sense to you.Camelbinky (talk) 22:16, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
What part of my post doesn't make sense to you? I'd be happy to explain it. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 22:43, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
Well it had nothing to do with what the rest of us are talking about in this thread and the link you went to is neither a RS nor relevant, and I would say its bordering on an attack piece on Jimbo saying what he did was wrong. Personally I think he made the right decision in working with the Times and to say otherwise is ridiculous. Freedom of the press is just that, the press has the freedom to publish things without government interference, if the press itself wants to censor itself that is fine. The US Constitution in no way guarentees citizens the right to know ANYTHING, the press is only free from interference, that doesnt mean that everything (whether govt, public or private) info should be open and accessible to all. I personally think those that think things like Wikileaks is required for a democracy to be true and free are confusing representative democracy with something else like anarchy.Camelbinky (talk) 22:55, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
So I guess you missed the point entirely, then? If Jimbo is personally or professionally involved with Wikileaks, he is unlikely to be able to reveal that without jeopardizing the whole exercise. The situation with David Rohde is analogous. (The Guardian article was arbitrarily chosen from the first few that came up in a Google news search, but the Guardian clearly is a reliable source despite what you may suggest.) Delicious carbuncle (talk) 19:32, 23 August 2010 (UTC)
Um, yea, I'm going to walk away now because frankly you have drawn some strange conclusions and your ideas are analogous to those who believe that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and Saddam Hussein was involved in 9/11, that President Obama is a Muslim, that there really is a Sasquatch or Chubacabra, and that black helicopters from the UN will soon come and take over. Take your conspiracy theory about Jimbo's involvement in other activities somewhere else. It really had nothing to do with this thread. I personally dont think Jimbo would ever be the type to be afraid of showing involvement with something like Wikileaks, I'd like to think he has a backbone and would not hide something trivial like that. The Guardian, in particular that op-ed piece is not reliable unless of course you believe all of those same things I mentioned just above.Camelbinky (talk) 20:13, 23 August 2010 (UTC)
From past experience I know that you don't understand rudimentary logic, but none of what you suggest follows from what I have said here. I was simply trying to alert you to the danger of making assumptions. If you want to inflate that into a "conspiracy theory", I can't stop you, but I suggest that walking away is probably a good idea. Delicious carbuncle (talk) 21:38, 23 August 2010 (UTC)
I've been pleased at how few have made the error. I haven't exactly done an exhaustive search, but I haven't seen any (no links needed, I assume there are some.) I'm slightly surprised none of the articles I've read felt the need to explain the lack of connection - I thought some reporter or blogger would assume a connection, and when finding out the facts, would choose to share it.--SPhilbrickT 19:53, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
I agree Sphilbrick, I thought the same exact thing from reading some articles when the military leaks story came out. I even had to look up Wikileaks article here on Wikipedia to see if there was a link.Camelbinky (talk) 22:16, 22 August 2010 (UTC)