User talk:Piotrus/Morsels of wikiwisdom

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Discussion of "Why edit warriors can win"[edit]

I agree with your proposed solution. We need very strict and clear definitions of all rules. I think we do not have enough formal rules in WP, especially when it comes to actions by administrators. "No edit warring" is a good general advice and policy. But the rule must be defined and applied very strictly: "No 3RR violations", and this is it. If your solution is adopted, a lot more violators will be reported, which is a good thing.Biophys (talk) 22:26, 14 September 2008 (UTC)

Interesting point, Biophys. On the one hand, we are urged (admittedly by an essay) to avoid instruction creep and, of course, to ignore all rules. On the other hand, rules make this place run smoothly - especially when they are well-enforced and judiciously applied by impartial administrators. Rules can never cover every situation; there will always be a way of getting around their technical provisions; that is why men and not machines are tasked to apply them (at least at this point in human history). Or, put another way, it's the old dichotomy found between continental civil law (everything spelt out in elaborate legal codes) / English common law (a more amorphous set of governing precedents being far more important than the written law). (Indeed, that is also a key difference in style between the Roman Catholic Church, with its catechism, its ecclesiastical courts, its Thomas Aquinas; and Eastern Orthodoxy, which has canons and a Creed but where very much is open to discretion in the name of economy.) The key question is, then, are rules set in stone or are they to be seen as guidelines? As an Anglophile Orthodox I can't help but side with the latter, and be a big proponent of WP:IAR, but of course God handed down stone tablets to Moses, and they said things like "Thou shalt not steal", not "I suggest you don't steal", so I suppose I can stomach an occasional "Thou shalt not make more than three reverts in 24 hours"-type rule as well (although, to take the metaphor a bit further, at the risk of blasphemy, do let us recall that God is all-merciful as well as all-just).
By the way, the slightly relaxed approach to rule application here may be due partly to the (natural) Anglo-American dominance on en.wiki. It would be revealing to study how rigorously, say, the French or the German Wikipedias apply their own rules. Biruitorul Talk 06:55, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
A very interesting idea for a research article. I agree with other points, and I attempted or will attempt to discuss some of them in my essay.--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 07:37, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

The only problem with the 3RR reports is the assumption that the admins who resolve them remain impartial. That is not so. In some content disputes the 3RR mediators are at least as square headed and ignorant as their protégés who engage in edit wars in defence of their mutual beliefs. Typically, a 3RR mediator will not punish his own fellowman alone, but in tandem with his opponent, while saving himself from scrutiny. The room for interpretation of 3RR rules allows for their abuse as well, rendering the entire system inoperable in most complex cases.
Please remember also that people get traumatized by prolonged edit warring and eventually learn to avoid the bullies and their sponsors, while often abandoning controversial articles regardless of what they say. --Poeticbent talk 14:50, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

I see the problem somewhat differently: the partial admins (and editors) will act similarly to tag team, criticizing the report, and making it more likely that the impartial admin will not take the action he would have taken otherwise. The partial admins will however rarely act, since they could be (rightly) accused of abuse of admin powers. Criticizing others, however, seems much more acceptable. You are completely right that most people see fighting wikibullies as less than fun. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 07:37, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

Good analysis, nicely sums up what 've been thinking.--Goodmorningworld (talk) 03:41, 18 February 2009 (UTC)

I especially agree with your last comment ('I see the problem somewhat differently'...). In fact the main ones likely to get involved in a dispute are not the desired impartials, but quite the opposite. Simply flooding a 'dispute' with verbiage means at least one complaint will likely find some sympathy among one or another impartial admins. Those who write the most and dispute/complain the most are more likely to win.Leidseplein (talk) 02:16, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

Discussion of "On the most dangerous of mindsets"[edit]

I like this, but of course like it says, it's POV in the sense it seems to be written from a male perspective. Uses only 'he' where an editor of the opposite sex can be just as good or maybe even better. I have not an idea. We may be just as good. Whatever absolute truth is, if it exists? Who cares actually? If there is an answer it depends on your belief. Monotheists (is this an existing English word?) may answer: "Only God knows". I'm curious enough to wonder what agnostics, atheists and others would answer. Thoughts, anyone? --Patio (talk) 11:14, 26 June 2010 (UTC)

Feel free to go through all of my essays and replace he with s/he :) I am not sure if the rest of your argument refers to this issue or something else? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 11:24, 26 June 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, guys, but this idea that you can't use a pronoun without fear of offending someone is probably one of the more dangerous mindsets in itself. Don't be daft.
You say, "If an editor thinks he is truly neutral, and has no POV, he is not only violating WP:NPOV (which clearly states that all editors have a POV: "All editors and all sources have biases"), but he is likely to refuse to ever compromise over content ("because he is not biased, on the contrary, he is completely neutral, right and represents the truth")."
At WP:NPOV I don't find "All editors and all sources have biases". Perhaps that wording has been removed. Bus stop (talk) 02:09, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

"If an editor thinks he is truly neutral, and has no POV, he is not only violating WP:NPOV (which clearly states that all editors have a POV: "All editors and all sources have biases"), but he is likely to refuse to ever compromise over content ("because he is not biased, on the contrary, he is completely neutral, right and represents the truth")."

  1. Are POV and bias the same thing?
  2. NPOV is itself a POV (stated on the policy page)
  3. The policy page also says that NPOV is non-negotiable, so refusal to compromise is sometimes mandated by policy
  4. Neutrality between the POVs of reliable sources, which is what articles are supposed to follow, isn't always the same as neutrality between the POVs of WP editors, which is what articles in practice tend to follow.
Peter jackson (talk) 11:18, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

Here's a minor correction (July 2017)[edit]

Incorrect: And never, ever, scoop down to becoming a "true believer" yourself.
Correct: And never, ever, stoop down to becoming a "true believer" yourself.

Thanks for all your hard work on this interesting page of essays, and I think that "scoop down" sounds adorable! —Geekdiva (talk) 04:01, 31 July 2017 (UTC)

Discussion of "On radicalization of users"[edit]

Discussion of "On the perils of anonymity"[edit]

The problem with your proposed solution is, we can try (only try) to protect real-name editors on Wikipedia, but we have no control over what happens elsewhere, from internet harrassment to identity theft to harrassment to physical attacks. I'd be wary of encouraging editors to declare their real names, for these reasons.--Goodmorningworld (talk) 03:54, 18 February 2009 (UTC)

I understand your concerns, which is why I think anonymity should be an option. But those who decide to take the extra risk you describe above and edit under their real names, aiding our project with their real reputations, should be rewarded. Currently they are everything but.--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 04:58, 18 February 2009 (UTC)
To reward would mean to encourage. We have an ethical obligation not to do that, in my opinion. Editors using real-life names (which may or may not be who they in fact are) already enjoy a "credibility advantage" in content discussions, especially if they are scholars with a published body of work.--Goodmorningworld (talk) 17:30, 19 February 2009 (UTC)
Many scholars don't reveal their name here because they don't want to be harassed by trolls. Many of those who do reveal it are still challenged by often uncivil anonymous editors who don't know and care who they are talking with. Many other users are not scholars. Revealing my name hasn't given me anything, as far as I can tell, other then having it associated with quite a lot of personal attacks. Thus, anonymity is de facto encouraged.--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 18:03, 19 February 2009 (UTC)
Interesting discussion. On Dutch Wikipedia you can find my real first name. It's there yet a long time. There are people who know my full name. I have no reason to keep it secret. It's up to everybody personally to stay anonymous, semi-anonymous or give up anonymity completely. Privacy is a great good we need to handle with extreme care if you ask me. --Patio (talk) 11:24, 26 June 2010 (UTC)
This is a very interesting discussion, and it seems to me that some arguments in Piotrus' essay are overly simplistic. I agree with Goodmorningworld's remarks (which are confirmed by what Piotrus himself is mentioning in the essay). Reasons for editors to stay anonymous are not founded only in places with oppressive regimes, they simply arise from general human properties. Anonymity allows people to avoid various forms of pressure, e.g. being directly addressed (outside Wikipedia) by those related to the subject of an article with subtle requests for self-censorship, e.g. to conceal some facts or write in a more favorable manner about something. Bringing reputation of respected real-life personality to Wikipedia may also not be as beneficial as it may seem at a first glance ad has its dangers, too. Authority of personality can be abused to enforce given points of view and to lower standards of critical evaluation, which happens a lot in academic community where commitment to factual accuracy is otherwise strongly emphasized. Talking about "moral courage required to link their real persona to their POVs" may also miss its point in many situations. Anonymity be a strong form of contributing for other reasons than seeking recognition for one's work, similarly as many people make anonymous donations to charity or other causes they believe in. If the main argument against anonymity is that it's used as cover for things people would not say or do under their real names, then we have a different kind of problem. It's a question whether banning anonymity would bring significant improvement in fighting against those who have insincere or bad intentions. The community should be able to fight against this without resorting to such measures, otherwise Wikipedia is in trouble anyway. I agree there could be additional measures available for protection of users who choose to use their real name. I believe that linking special privileges to non-anonymous accounts would be bad because it would put in unequal position all editors who choose anonymity for completely legitimate reasons. This would damage democratic and collaborative nature of Wikipedia, which are its greatest strengths. --Ajgorhoe (talk) 18:20, 11 September 2017 (UTC)

Discussion of "Why good users leave the project, or why "civility is the key policy"[edit]

You need to take the following points into account also:

  • Polite bigotry
  • Polite promotion of ethnic hatreds
  • Obstreperous obstructionism (polite)
  • Passive-aggressive playing the victim
  • Complicity by admins with the above behaviors by editors
  • Clueless admins and Arbitrators sanctioning occasional outburst but not polite baiting
  • Clueless admins and Arbitrators indiscriminately punishing both parties ("Send them both to bed without dinner").

I may think of other counter-examples later that disprove "civility is the key policy".--Goodmorningworld (talk) 17:28, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

I am not sure if I follow your argument here. I have certainly seen behavior that is de facto uncivil but masquerades as "civil enough" that is is next to impossible to prove it is in fact long term baiting/bigotry/hatred/etc. This indeed leads to admins/arbcoms ignoring it or punishing both parties instead of the truly guilty one. But to me this is indeed a failure of civility - which is simply not enforced strictly enough.--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 18:13, 19 February 2009 (UTC)
Alright, it seems we're not far apart. The word "civility", however, means different things to different people. To some, anything is civil that doesn't include a racial slur or swearword, others – like you – define it more broadly. Hence my concern that "civility is the key policy" will have some nodding in approval but for the wrong reasons.--Goodmorningworld (talk) 18:27, 19 February 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. Would you like to rewrite the essay to reflect the above points yourself? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 19:07, 19 February 2009 (UTC)
Thank you for the offer, I'll put it on my to-do list.--Goodmorningworld (talk) 19:20, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

When I began editing in January 2008, I began by editing an article in which I had a deep personal interest, Laotian Civil War. I was mocked for my lack of knowledge of Wikipedia procedures. I was informed that my status as a participant and eyewitness unfitted me to write about the war. My insider knowledge was derided. Other editors ignored my POV and ganged up on me. Fortunately for Wikipedia, my career as a professional writer has left me pretty hardened to criticism. I eventually gave up and moved on to other articles.

Later on, I pointed out flaws in the assessment procedure. After some heated discussion about Pier Ruggero Piccio that spread little light on the matter, I was informed that if I only changed my writing style, the contradictions in WP's assessment rules would magically disappear. The further realization that interlinkage is the most important attribute of hypertext, and that it is ignored in the assessment process, made me realize that the assessment process is useless. I have quit dealing with the assessment process.

Another of my realizations is that WP's mindset is that of code jockies who might incidentally write on articles. I have endured ongoing criticism because I have been slow and clumsy with wiki-editing. Requests for help with such have been completely ignored. No one—repeat, no one‐has ever shown any appreciation for my writing skills.

I have now withdrawn from contact from my fellow Wikipedians and write in a vacuum because I got tired of the relentless carping. My present philosophy is that the breadth of available knowledge is as important as its depth; I have created pretty much all the possible stubs in my chosen niche, and work on improving them. No one cares very much that I am doing this, including myself. From being excited about constructing a cathedral of knowledge for the ages, I have come down to using WP as my daily writing exercise when nothing better beckons. When I strike a more interesting venue for my daily exercises, WP will be history.

A final observation: I believe the number of ongoing WP editors is declining because WP has largely exhausted the "code jockey" pool of potential editors.

Georgejdorner (talk) 18:54, 26 July 2013 (UTC)

re: 'Final observation': You forgot that There's a sucker born every minute. :-) Staszek Lem (talk) 01:10, 27 July 2013 (UTC)
re: 'Daily exercise': Why do you think that this work is worthless? Why do you think that Wikipedia is a cathedral, but your "niche" is not part of it?... I hate to play shrink and I would not pursue this line of questioning, but may I suggest you not to develop an "wiki-inferiority complex" just because of the "superiority complex" of others. Staszek Lem (talk) 01:10, 27 July 2013 (UTC)

Well, yes, there are suckers born every minute; it's just that fewer and fewer are being sucked into Wikipedia. I watched one of the world's premier experts on World War I aviation abort his contributions to WP because he got the standard rotten bullying welcome to the community.

And I am neither "wiki-inferior" nor do I care what complexes others have. However, I am a professional writer, though I draw little respect for that in this community. I am going to write on a daily basis, somewhere. So far, WP has been the fortunate recipient of my skills because I do believe my contributions are valuable. However, when the fun entirely disappears from my experience here because of the "mushroom treatment", so will I.

Georgejdorner (talk) 00:17, 31 July 2013 (UTC)


Discussion of "On the spirit and the letter of Wikipedia"[edit]

Discussion of "Mud sticks, or on activity of editors"[edit]

Discussion of "On cabals, canvassing and cooperation"[edit]

I was involved in a so-called "edit war" with a "cabal" of editors (and an "administrator") who all fervently believed that they were "true believers" and used their power and by backing each other up to win out in a dispute concerning traditional interpretations of certain historic events in the British Dark Ages and "revisionist" theories expounded by this cabal who supported it. None of the cabal was from the UK and they constantly deleted, reverted and vandalised the work of others - and all the work by me which they followed. Ultimately I challenged the "administrator", accused him of being part of a revisionist cabal and said he was cyber bullying me. This was resulted in him counter-accusing me of being "uncivil" and knowing the system as he does dragging me before the "uncivil" judges who predictably found in his favour. Thus I rarely edit now and dozens of former editors whom I used to regularly see have all given up. I strongly believe that 99% of the sites "administrators" currently basking in the power of their anonymous little kingdoms ought to be stripped of their privileges.Aetheling1125 16:29, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

Discussion of "Model of mass radicalization and conflict generation"[edit]

  • But "true believers" are victims: just ask them. They're defending the Fooish National Cause, which has been victimized for centuries, and anybody questioning their actions is engaged in anti-Fooism. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 19:59, 6 April 2009 (UTC)

"2. Wikipedia model in general and content related dispute resolutions procedures in particular do work ...

3. This may however take much longer in highly specialized content areas, where fewer neutral editors will notice disputes."

Have you taken account of the fact that the community hasn't grown in size since 2007? It's no use saying "eventually there'll be enough people to make the system work" Peter jackson (talk) 11:24, 26 February 2011 (UTC)
The stagnated growth is a major problem in many areas; just witness the abundance of mostly inactive WikiProjects. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 17:28, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

Discussion of "On why good admins don't exist"[edit]

Discussion of "On why so many admin heads are seen sticking in the sand when push comes to shove"[edit]

Discussion of "On the importance of wikipolitics"[edit]

Discussion of "Advocates needed"[edit]

An important positive aspects of using semi-professional advocates in wiki-discussions is that it virtually forces the defend each other ethic, and reduces tenability of emotional "discussion", particularly personal attacks against each other. Also, one of the problems with Wikipedia's current model is that it favours never-ending (or open-ended) discussions while at the same time claiming that Wikipedia is not a WP:FORUM. It just is not feasible for any open-access web project to train all participants in dispute completion methods, but it can be done with a handful of advocates, especially if they already have some background in debating, science, or lawyering. ΔιγουρενΕμπρος! 22:34, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Discussion of "On why the little editor doesn't matter (but should)"[edit]

Discussion of "This cannot be over-emphasized: mud sticks"[edit]

Discussion of "On the distressing trend of editors leaving Wikipedia"[edit]

Hello, you were kind enough to work on some of the articles I wrote and we appear to have a few similar interests. I'd like to comment on the trend of editors leaving Wikipedia. I'll share my experiences, which are hopefully a useful example, and which I think in part explain why editors leave in large numbers:

INITIAL EXPERIENCE: I started tinkering with Wikipedia around 2002-2003, and I created an article for the frist time on Wikipedia in 2004, all anonymously. I left editing immediately after my first 4 or 5 articles, or after about a 2 months. That was a good experience and I've been quietly intrigued to watch the articles grow and improve since then. This CAN be a very satisfying way to do things, so one point I have is that some level of departing editors is not necessarily a bad thing. I knew there would be edits and possibly even disputes with the articles, and I didn't want the aggravation, so I did the heavy lifting of creating reasonably good articles and let the Wikipedia process work itself out, which it did, such that today the articles are very good and much better than my initial effort. The process does produce results quite well over the long term, but can be painful for participants; Maybe its a deliberate and acceptable choice by some article creators to give birth, then leave?
PAID EDITING: I then worked for a public relations company and one of my jobs was to update Wikipedia articles on the (mostly sports team) clients we covered. The updates were purely statistical - games won/lost, player percentages, etc... The company created 3-4 usernames solely for this purpose (not sure if that was wiki-legal) and that was another positive experience.
TIPTOE BACK INTO CONTENT CREATION. After a fairly long amount of Wikipedia interaction, I was not scared of it but frankly I was still hesitant to create new content. (Imagine how a totally new editor would feel) The reason: creating articles is painful. Very recently, I returned to creating articles, which is my real passion. I am deliberately avoiding non-controversial subjects, because one problem with Wikipedia is that Albert Einstein or Jesus Christ could write an article on a subject and be assaulted reletnlessly by those who, I'm not afraid to say it, are badly educated and in the non-wiki world wouldn't be allowed responsibility of any kind. So the democratic or consensus-building ideals of Wikipedia are (in practice) annoying interferences to high quality article authors whose completely unreviewed article is likely top-notch academic quality. (not that I am capable of that) I was very surprised that even sticking to non-controversial subjects does not immunize an editor from quite passionate hostility ocassionally, because it seems every little hidden corner of knowledge has its angry partisans.
So, the article writing process can be painful in terms of the editing applied by others, especially if the subject matter is in any way subject to opinion, as most are. Academic quality writers aren't accustom to being directly edited without their consent, of having their no-doubt intense knowledge insulted by random vagrants.
Finally, the technical aspects of article creation are difficult and getting more so. The article wizard is weak - it seems mainly there to tell you to make sure you have sources - it in fact does not use wizardry in any way to help you format or code an article, and this is what is really needed. Using cites is no problem, but formatting them is a pain. The instructions on creating a new article are lengthy and unclear, there are oddly located wiki guidelines and advice sources - its a mess. It is very discouraging for the new editor to get started on an article.

All this is just my two cents and I feel better with all that off my chest...thanks for your work.Leidseplein (talk) 16:54, 30 March 2011 (UTC)

Thank you for the interesting story. I think you didn't mean "avoiding non-controversial subjects" but the opposite, did you? You may want to post your Article Wizard review on its discussion page, I think such feedback is very important (but this page we are on has rather low visibility). --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 17:27, 30 March 2011 (UTC)
Whoops, yes I meant I was trying to avoid non-controversial subjects, thanks! What about this idea I have: allowing, if desired by an editor, the use of volunteer wiki advocates to do the battling on talk pages, etc...? Certainly there are enough people here who thrive on arguing, while many of us with professional positions related to the articles we write have no time to spend the hours required to argue and defend articles against the types with unlimited time on their hands eager to distract and disrupt endlessly? This is an huge reason why quality writers abandon Wikipedia - they may barely have the time to write an unpaid, unprofessionally recognized article anyway, but have no interest in arguing about it with anyone...you could easily spend all day (and many editors apparently do) arguing over minutia, doing reverts, making complaints, etc... and its fundamental that the most competent writers on a subject are very likely busy every day with that subject in their real lives, while, ironically, the least competent distractors often have time on their hands to relentlessly harass. I know me and a dozen other people (in my department at a major university) would be happy to write an article on their area of expertise - but who have no time or desire to constantly defend it to the perpetual Wikipidia complaining and disputing editors.
I took your advice and posted my ideas for the article wizard here
What do you think ... allow volunteer editors to designate themselves as advocates? Ready to defend writers who have no time and interst in aruging? Ready to manage an article after it is created in the same way today it is 'managed', at least early on, by the same person who wrote it????

Leidseplein (talk) 01:42, 1 April 2011 (UTC)

An interesting discussion. I consider myself a "SME" (Subject Matter Expert") (or near enough) in a few fields and 1st became an "editor" when I tried to improve a technical entry in ~2007. I was somewhat dismayed (to say the least) that my efforts (through a couple of edits and a new page creation) were rejected! So recently I thought I would try again (add a reference to a product I work with) to see what non-obvious rules I might break this time. Can't say I'm hopeful (or maybe I'm "still wrong" in what content Wikipedia is looking for!). On the other hand I can see how "editors" (as in page reviewers, rather than content creators) must have a tough job policing edits... so no grudges from me (albeit alongside a very reduced appetite to contribute more). PS: I do wonder if there is a more "democratic" approach Wikipedia should make to articles, edits etc - eg a Slashdot-style voting mechanism? PPS: I do however still find Wikipedia a great place to reference in blog posts (although I generally need to check the talk pages to make sure I avoid promoting "overzealous" editing!). Isvana (talk) 15:02, 10 May 2011 (UTC)


Hello, all,

Read the Talk page on the Laotian Civil War to see how I was treated as a new editor. I contributed under IP 168.27.0.51, as well as my own name. I happen to be one of the few Americans who was actually stationed in Laos as a combatant; that was considered grounds to disregard and mock me, while a stoned hippie's vague maunderings of original research drew no comment. Again, feel free to read that Talk page; it's a typical first experience for the rookie contributor in WP. Then ask yourself why anyone would want to stick around after that.

Georgejdorner (talk) 00:41, 31 July 2013 (UTC)


I come, on a quiet Saturday afternoon, to start I guess, full of relief that Piotrus is to all appearances a valid, serious editor. I had seen a couple of {{fact}} templates on SAPPRFT's page -- in the intro, one line after another line, two templates -- and they'd felt just a little 'shaky'. One I eliminated with a simple-ish Google search and a great source. The other .... Well, I'm leaving that to later or to others.

I come to ... the page of 'wisdom morsels' and then to this particular one ... out of curiosity and growing appreciation ...

... and also to register a little question: Wouldn't dated, signed morsels from you be even better, Piotrus? It was this section, with its 'distressing trend' hed, that got me: No start date for trend; no end date (unless, I guess, you pull the section, problem solved). If you can postdate -- even roughly -- the existing ones, great. If you can date (new ones; amendments) going forward, better. I think the 'signature' (with date) on Wiki is one of its really charming features; awe-some across the whole encyclopedia; SO digital ... but yet so ... comfortable -- and necessary in the circumstances. But I wax. FWIW.

I may be back to comment/query on COI (or others); I like some of what you've said on COI, too; and certainly your whole ... concept, here. You could see in my pretty old, creaky, muddled ... user page maybe some similar albeit nascent, there, aspirations. Meanwhile, thanks and cheers! Swliv (talk) 20:45, 23 April 2016 (UTC)

Discussion of "On citing every sentence"[edit]

Pretty much required by the assessors. They ignore WP standards to rigorously impose their rules of thumb on articles. In my bitter experience, they are impervious to suggestion, and frequently do not understand the article they are editing.

Georgejdorner (talk) 00:22, 31 July 2013 (UTC)

Discussion of "On copyright paranoia"[edit]

How true. I've seen this happen so many times. Double sharp (talk) 03:40, 11 August 2012 (UTC)

Concerning Polish copyright, the template lists only the most common case for brevity, but the law clearly says that if author is unknown the term ends 70 years after firtst circulation. Maciekz (talk) 23:36, 1 December 2015 (UTC)

Discussion of "On the old and new generation of editors" or 'Is WP:IAR still relevant?'[edit]

I've been 'actively' editing for less than a year (made a few—mostly minor—edits dating back to June 2010, but by far the bulk of my involvement has occurred after March 2013). So I can't personally speak for 'how things were' but that Wikipedia:Ignore All Riles ... ha, funny typo "Riles", food-for-thought that... Anyway, that Wikipedia:Ignore All Rules exists as one of the illustrious WP:5 Pillars does imply that someone took it seriously at some point. I'm inclined to lump the guidelines on WP:LAWYERing and WP:NOTBUREAUCRACY into such assumptions as well. As sadly—outside of occasional user-page essays—I've barely seen them receive lip service. Their consideration and application seems to have become a dreamy fantasy. Perhaps, like the coelacanth, they'll be rediscovered at some point. I confess that I was beginning to suspect them to be more like unicorns. Ah, hyperbolic venting... sigh...

The long-and-short of it is that I bought into an idealistic PR illusion about principles and lofty goals only to find myself repeatedly blindsided by base mammalian territoriality dressed up in skirts of pettifog. Thought I was hitching a ride on the Heart of Gold only to find myself in the bowels of a Vogon battlecruiser.

I'm amazed at the obtuseness of many (if not most) editors when presented with the word 'context'. I've repeatedly seen it ignored as if the very term ('context') simply didn't exist in their vocabulary. Like how many simply do not hear foreign phonemes. They simply don't register within their system of parsing semantic content. [Musicians may have some advantage here through general skill at distinguishing sounds. They at least tend to recognize something there to which semantic value can then be attached.]

It's not that my references to 'context'—and/or guidelines which refer to such—get discounted. To 'discount' one would at least have to give recognition to the the fact that such had been brought up and that such existed. I've repeatedly run into situations where any attempt to draw considerations of context into a discussion are simply ignored. The respondent will snip at some other part of my comment or reiterate a previous WikiLaw criterion but invariably without making any reference to my use of the word 'context' or even to direct quotes—from sections of the same guidelines they themselves are actively quoting—which make reference to contextual considerations.

'Field independent thinking' can be very powerful but it can also result in huge blind-spots, clinical/neurological denial. I'm left to wonder whether the en.Wiki community has become so accommodating of WP:ASPERGERS spectrum personalities as to now be actively hostile to 'neuro-normals'. I think this may contribute to low female participation as well. I think other systemic factors also contribute to making the Wiki unpleasant/unaccommodating to women. But I'm already running long-winded and will leave that for now.

At this point I'm actually wondering if perhaps it would be best to propose removal of 'Ignore All Rules' and other such sentiments from the en.Wiki so as to quit misleading folks. So many current editors seem to prefer pretending that the guidelines (themselves open to dynamic peer editing) are somehow sacrosanct, 'written in stone', not to be questioned. If this de jure state is truly what's preferred, then let's just go ahead and make it 'de facto' and be done with it. While not really to my taste, at least it would be clear and honest. Much confusion could be avoided and new editors would have a more realistic idea of what they were getting into.

<exhales and steps down from soap-box> Ah, well, Piotrus, seems your short observation/specualtion got me rolling on a long exposition. Felt good to unload a bit.

Thanks for the venue,

--Kevjonesin (talk) 04:08, 28 September 2013 (UTC)

General discussion[edit]

So true[edit]

This is all so true. I have given up editing some articles ridden in controversy precisely because this is not a good investment of my time. Other articles of mine were trampled by admins, though. Wikipedia is a mess. 212.188.108.214 (talk) 22:26, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

Largely I agree, but I've posted a couple of specific criticisms above. Peter jackson (talk) 11:25, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

wikipedea review wants you to come there[edit]

They have a thread on your essays and how great a writer you are. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 72.82.57.163 (talk) 01:49, 30 March 2009 (UTC)

If anybody gives me a link or such, I'd be happy to read such a thread :) --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| talk 00:29, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Agreed but ... so what?[edit]

(please feel free to delete this Piotrus - it's just a msg in a bottle)

I want to say first that it is hard for me to imagine anyone NOT seeing the problems you identif. So the question, for me at least, is what to do about any of it.

I am an editor who gave up but then returned. I see my editing as a way to support wiki. I use wiki for initial research. I edit it, as may be needed, based on what I go on to learn, in a cyclic process of learning and giving learning back.

In despair at my inability to impact on what I see as wikipedia diseases, I gave up on editing. These diseases seem to me to be proliferating and growing despite wiki "rules" rather than in their abscence. Some of the colonising pathogens that, when I am fall into wiki's well, concern me the most are:

  1. bloating and propagandism (eg the articles on US space exploration)
  2. mergeing for mergeing's sake (often serving 1. and 3.)
  3. revisionism (overwriting history to accord with "modern concensus" - usually hegemonistic)

Rules to prevent such diseases are not much use without an effective enforcement system. Simply adding to the rule book is counterproductive. Existing guidance is Kafkaesque and the mediation system seems comically tragic.

I was able to return to editing by doing two things. Firstly I detatched myself from any sense of ownership. I no longer follow the articles I edit. Doing so is either unnecessary or pointless. Secondly I limit my edits to more technical articles. I am no longer a contributor to the wikipedia project as such (what this?!). If wiki keeps what I offer then fine, if not, also fine. I will have moved on.

So, fwiw, if you answer this please drop me a ref. As I say, I'm not following this :D

Best wishes

LookingGlass (talk) 13:20, 5 September 2016 (UTC)