User talk:Mandruss

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Welcome! If you post here, I'll reply here; no point in scattering a conversation across two pages. I may ping you when I reply, or not, depending on how much I want to be sure you see my reply. If you want to be sure you see a reply, please add this page to your watchlist or just remember to check back later. I don't use Talkback.(Dontcha wish we could agree on one way to do this, and eliminate all the unnecessary confusion? I do.)

There is one place at Wikipedia where I get to dictate a mature and respectful tone of conversation. This is it. Off limits to people who won't or can't converse like adults.

The p&g paradox[edit]


Love your userpage! Also the first version of it. A fellow IBM sysprog no less! Good to meet you.

I particularly like the Micro-essays and Changing your mind, changing your !vote, which I think is similar to my view at wp:creed#wrong and the intro to wp:rantstyle.

But what I'd like to take further is the p&g paradox, which says in part Some will say that p&g guide behavior, so we can speak of violations of it. Others say that p&g reflect behavior, and a p or g should be updated if there are enough editors ignoring it or unaware of it (in that case it follows that speaking of violations impedes the community's ability to change consensus). Ample support for both concepts can be found in policy and common practice. I have never understood how both can be true...

I think that both are true, but that in that case it follows that speaking of violations impedes the community's ability to change consensus is false. See wp:creed#rules and wp:5P5.

Some time ago as Manager Configuration Management in a large software project I had the following conversation...

(Name suppressed), because of what you did yesterday the whole project has gone back at least a week, maybe a fortnight. The modules you lodged into the pre-production libraries did not have signoff and are non-complying so they won't get it. I've spent all morning backing it out and notifying other people that they need to back out and reperform most of what they did yesterday, and I'll spend the rest of the week at least arguing with them and their various managers. 
Andy, I am meeting my objectives.
Yes, but didn't you hear what I said? When you break the rules like that you impact our project very badly indeed.
Andy, if my objectives are wrong then go to my boss and get them changed. But I do not think he will. Because if we do what you propose, he will not meet his objectives.

If you multiply that attitude by five levels of management your two-year project will now take ten years and be obsolete before it is implemented. Which are exactly the statistics of that particular project.

Attitudes are extremely important. The rules can encourage good attitudes, and if they don't we're sunk. Because they are no substitute. Which is wp:5P5.

As an aside, there's a difference between a guideline and a policy in business which we don't use in Wikipedia and IMO should.

Any policy or guideline can be overridden by whoever authorised it in the first place. You don't need to go any higher but you do need to go that high. (Delegations of authority make it a bit more complex but the underlying principle holds, it's just that some authorisations are direct and some indirect.)

In the case of a policy, you need to get that authorisation before the fact. In the case of a guideline you need to be able to get it after the fact, if challenged. It's that simple. So following neither is optional. Andrewa (talk) 01:00, 23 October 2017 (UTC)

No comments on that yet? Maybe it was a bit of a dump, sorry! Andrewa (talk) 09:53, 24 October 2017 (UTC)

@Andrewa: Sorry, not deliberately ignoring you. I decided to let that percolate, and it's still percolating. And somehow I missed your follow-up inquiry.
Basically my problem is this. Others often cite p&g in opposition to my arguments. When I cite p&g in my arguments, the response is often that the p&g is out of date and doesn't represent actual community consensus. I'm expected to just take their word for that and concede the point. Alternatively, they can play the "Wikipedia is not about rules" card. My mind doesn't work that way. If one set out to design a system that would keep editors permanently confused and therefore vulnerable in a debate, it would look a lot like en-wiki. Most longtime editors will say the system is just fine; you just have to understand it (and some of them will helpfully explain it to you, if you ask nicely, in words that don't make any sense to you). If few people understand the system, it is not just fine, full stop. If a lucid explanation is written down anywhere, it can't be in an essay that is just someone's opinion. And I'm not sure what relevance there is in how off-wiki systems work; I'm trying to understand the system we have, not reform it using outside examples. ―Mandruss  08:46, 6 November 2017 (UTC)
A short piece I read recently, Beware Isolated Demands For Rigor, seems to touch on Mandruss' opening conundrums. -- (talk) 12:30, 6 November 2017 (UTC)
As does wp:5P5. You might find this essay of mine interesting too, but be warned it's a rather heavy read. Andrewa (talk) 18:25, 6 November 2017 (UTC)
It's both very simple and very complicated! See 5P5 (linked to above). I am wrangling with the same thing, see User:Andrewa/silly ideas#Personal attacks.
I was once told (at a seminar on theology would you believe) that the only rule of mental health is never take responsibility for what you cannot control. Years later I realised that the psychologist who said this was quite wrong, there is a rule two, always take responsibility for what you can control, and that it's possibly even the more important of the two, in that it's the one that the people I meet with serious mental health problems have most often tragically violated.
But for Wikipedia he was right. Maybe Wikipedia will survive the current violations of NPA, and even thrive because of this. Or maybe it will go the way of Kodak, and just as unexpectedly. We can neither predict nor control that. We just do our bit. Andrewa (talk) 18:16, 6 November 2017 (UTC)
Again, a mode of thinking that can only be grasped by editors with an IQ of 130+ after years of experience—one completely different from anything we experience or learn about in the real world—is not a useful mode of thinking. This is the essential point that most experienced editors completely ignore, and I can't help wondering if they ignore it because an almost-incomprehensible system increases their value to the project, as one of the few who understand it—a sort of high priesthood. ―Mandruss  19:45, 6 November 2017 (UTC)
Agree. Where do we go from there? Andrewa (talk) 20:44, 6 November 2017 (UTC)
Realistically, we recite the Serenity Prayer and go on. Most of Wikipedia's more serious problems are rooted in human nature, which we are unlikely to repeal any time soon (this is why the rest of the world has managements and representative governments). I've already backed off my investment considerably for the sake of my mental health. But it helps to know there is one experienced editor who doesn't think I'm crazy. ―Mandruss  20:53, 6 November 2017 (UTC)
I had never noticed how closely the Serenity Payer matched my two rules for mental health! The remarkable thing about Wikipedia is that it works at all. It wasn't designed to work, it was designed to feed Nupedia. But somehow it proved fitter than Nupedia. That does not guarantee its immortality. Andrewa (talk) 13:16, 7 November 2017 (UTC)
Mind you, I assume you have done the IBM aptitude test at some stage and scored at least an A- to become a systems programmer, which indicates an IQ well above 100. I'm sure Larry Sanger would also score well (and without him there would probably be no Wikipedia). As do I. And while a mode of thinking that can only be grasped by editors with an IQ of 130+ after years of experience is not useful here, agree, one that can only be grasped by one with an IQ of 95 or less is even less useful IMO. And frankly I think I've seen examples, but wp:attack prevents me from citing them. While intelligence isn't always an advantage, stupidity is almost always a disadvantage. (Name supressed) above possibly being an example of stupidity wrecking a project. Andrewa (talk) 19:38, 7 November 2017 (UTC)

Annual discretionary sanctions alert regarding post-1932 US politics and closely related topics, 2017-11-20[edit]

Commons-emblem-notice.svg This message contains important information about an administrative situation on Wikipedia. It does not imply any misconduct regarding your own contributions to date.

Please carefully read this information:

The Arbitration Committee has authorised discretionary sanctions to be used for pages regarding all edits about, and all pages related to post-1932 politics of the United States and closely related people, a topic which you have edited. The Committee's decision is here.

Discretionary sanctions is a system of conduct regulation designed to minimize disruption to controversial topics. This means uninvolved administrators can impose sanctions for edits relating to the topic that do not adhere to the purpose of Wikipedia, our standards of behavior, or relevant policies. Administrators may impose sanctions such as editing restrictions, bans, or blocks. This message is to notify you that sanctions are authorised for the topic you are editing. Before continuing to edit this topic, please familiarise yourself with the discretionary sanctions system. Don't hesitate to contact me or another editor if you have any questions.

{{u|Checkingfax}} {Talk} 10:31, 20 November 2017 (UTC)

Already well aware of this, but thanks. Actually I was considering posting this for you, since you're the one who re-reverted in violation of the remedies. My re-re-revert was only for enforcement of the remedies, as I stated in my edit summary, and I believe that's allowed. ―Mandruss  10:33, 20 November 2017 (UTC)
Hi, Mandruss. Saying that I cannot revert once, but you can twice, is illogical. Please try to grep the intent of 1RR. Logically. Having fun! Cheers! {{u|Checkingfax}} {Talk} 10:57, 20 November 2017 (UTC)
Already responded to, below. ―Mandruss  11:05, 20 November 2017 (UTC)

1RR warning for Donald Trump regarding three reverts of my edits[edit]

Stop icon

THIS IS YOUR ONLY WARNING: Your recent editing history at Donald Trump, shows that you have engaged in edit warring. To resolve the content dispute, please do not revert or change the edits of others when you are reverted. Instead of reverting, please use the article's talk page to work toward making a version that represents consensus among editors. The best practice at this stage is to discuss, not edit-war. See BRD for how this is done. If discussions reach an impasse, you can then post a request for help at a relevant noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases, you may wish to request temporary page protection.

Being involved in an edit war can result in your being blocked from editing—especially if you violate the one-revert rule (1-RR), which states that an editor must not perform more than one revert on any other topical pages (e.g.- abortion, transgender, iraq, post-1932 US politics, and so on) that are also 1-RR within a 24-hour period. BECAUSE THIS ARTICLE IS A 1-RR ARTICLE: Undoing another editor's work—whether in whole or in part, whether involving the same or different material each time—even on different pages—counts as a revert. Also keep in mind that while violating the one-revert rule often leads to a block, you can still be blocked for edit warring—even if you don't violate the one-revert rule, which you have.

You reverted my edit at the Donald Trump article, claiming in your edit summary that my edit was not a convention that suited you, and that it was somehow arguably worse (without presenting the argument in your edit summary), then you restored the substantive portions of your revert (fixing the bare URL, harmonizing the datestyle, etc.) back to status quo ante bellum. I restored the remaining non-controversial portion of my edit, and you reverted that, along with anti-WP:Link rot archiving that I had performed using a sanctioned archiving tool created by the Internet Archive. All edits performed by me were done in a conventional manner, using stock tools. There was zero customization. Please self-revert my edits, or agree to have me do it with no further ado from you. Thank you. Having fun! Cheers! {{u|Checkingfax}} {Talk} 10:55, 20 November 2017 (UTC)

For my first revert, see (1) WP:BRD and (2) this sentence in the ArbCom remedies: "All editors must obtain consensus on the talk page of this article before reinstating any edits that have been challenged (via reversion)." For my second revert, I have already said that, as I understand it, reversion is allowed for the purpose of enforcing the ArbCom remedies. I've done it before without consequences or even objection from uninvolved editors (including multiple admins who often visit that article and could impose a discretionary sanction on me). I've also seen it done by others, also without consequence. If you disagree, take it to WP:ARCA for clarification. As far as I can tell, you are taking an aggressive stance from a completely baseless position, and any experienced outside observer would see that. ―Mandruss  11:04, 20 November 2017 (UTC)
BTW, I have no idea what you mean by "stock tools". Anybody can create a script without community consensus for its use. ―Mandruss  11:13, 20 November 2017 (UTC)
Hi, Mandruss. You state that no spacing is the convention?
You state that 1RR only allows you to revert once, and not me.
The verbiage you see on the Trump talk page is contracditory and that verbiage is not found on the official Template:ds/talk notice templates. Such templates must be placed unaltered and via substitution. The one you see is altered, not substituted, and is therefore invalid. Ds template text may not be altered. Period.
As to your BTW, you have no idea about much. Your vision is myopic and self-serving. Consistently.
Actually, no. The preferred method is to archive links proactively so that they cannot rot. Adding the archived link to the live link makes an easy task of getting to the archived version when necessary; no searching.
As for spacing, some are spaced, some are not, and the script provides harmony. Why is that an issue for you? Wow.
Undoing somebody's edits because you have a preference is nervy.
Please do not bludgeon this. Your bullying is pedantic and boorish.
As to your statement of where I must discuss things, we are permitted to have discussions on the page of our choice - mine, yours, theirs, or the article. I chose to have it here, and there, but not where you dictate it must be. I look forward to a bit more collaboration and cooperation from you. Having fun! Cheers! {{u|Checkingfax}} {Talk} 11:53, 20 November 2017 (UTC)
Even if you hadn't started with personal insults, I wouldn't continue arguing with you here. I have stated my position clearly and I stand by it. Feel free to take it to article talk, WP:ANI, or ArbCom, but the user talk ends here and anything further will be removed. ―Mandruss  11:59, 20 November 2017 (UTC)

New Page Reviewing[edit]

Wikipedia New page reviewer.svg
Hello, Mandruss.

I've seen you editing recently and you seem knowledgeable about Wikipedia's policies and guidelines.
Would you please consider becoming a New Page Reviewer? Reviewing/patrolling a page doesn't take much time but it requires a good understanding of Wikipedia policies and guidelines; currently Wikipedia needs experienced users at this task. (After gaining the flag, patrolling is not mandatory. One can do it at their convenience). But kindly read the tutorial before making your decision. Thanks. — Insertcleverphrasehere (or here) 10:56, 21 November 2017 (UTC)