User talk:Raul654/Raul's laws

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Welcome to the discussion

Pcb's comments[edit]

(In reply to Kosembase's law): That's not actually what Kosebamse said on your talk page. He said that people go crazy (violate social standards) under the stress of having to repeatedly defend themselves. People with non-mainstream thoughts are more likely to have defend themselves more often. This is independent of whether they are correct or not. Pcb21| Pete 10:23, 25 September 2005 (UTC)

  • I actually asked Raul to help me with the phrasing and the above phrasing (including corollary) is my amended version of his proposal. And by the way, "people of strong opinion" is Raul's way of putting it, I was actually thinking of "fanatics, monomaniacs and nutters" rather than this, but am grateful for the version that he supplied. I don't doubt that people with non-mainstream thoughts are more likely to have to defend themselves more often, but that gives them no right or excuse to behave uncivilly . Indeed, the more exotic your views, the greater is the degree of compliance with accepted standards of behavior that you need to find an audience willing to discuss them. Kosebamse 19:23, 27 September 2005 (UTC)

Perhaps you can add somewhere the "axiom of the Babel Tower".+MATIA 09:20, 20 October 2005 (UTC)

I'm unfamiliar with that... explain, please? →Raul654 13:47, 20 October 2005 (UTC)
Sorry for the long delay. It's about NPOV and expanding an article. I think the title is good, but my ideas are still in a raw form. In the next days I'll try to give some examples and I hope you (or we) can summarise them. +MATIA 23:00, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

Suggested law...[edit]

As the length of an argument on wikipedia-l or foundation-l approaches infinity, the probability of it turning into a language debate approaches 1. Mindspillage (spill yours?) 01:55, 2 December 2005 (UTC)

Oh, oh, I have one too! In a dispute, the higher the probability that a user is in the wrong, the higher the probability that that user will take an immediatist stance in said dispute. (Because users that are in the wrong, whether from a policy or civility standpoint tend to fear people will figure this out and thus desire to have their suggestions effected immediately. Prime example: Everyking in the Autobiography (Ashlee Simpson album) dispute last year. Not that I have anything against him personally; I think he's mellowed a bit since the arbcom laid down the law.) Johnleemk | Talk 10:15, 2 December 2005 (UTC)

    • New suggested Law

The number of entries a contributor makes & the willingness of that contributor to return and add more work is directly proportional to the the Arcane Index,(AI=O x N). (Arcane Index = Obscurity of the subject x Number of linkages to a current event in the news.) The number of other subject entries, after a rise in the Arcane Index, will follow a Bell Curve that is inversly proportional to the number of users who view the Arcane Indexed entry as a result of it's prominence in the public's awareness. The inverse proportionality will climb as the number of users viewing the entry increases and fade as the subject matter of the entry fades from public awareness.

  • Additional Corollary #1

The total number of posts will rise proportionate to the number of edits as the originating contributor attempts to defend and edit additions or subtractions from the entry and begin a hyperbolic downward curve as the contributor's "Patience With Fools", (PWF) evaporates. {Still working on the PWF formula} LOL

  • Additional Corollary #2

The number of contributions will decrease as the originating contributor finds an increase in the number of edits that differ from the originating contributor's knowledge base and slowly return as the originating contributor forgets just how many people disagree with his/her knowledge.

The psychology behind this is relatively simple. People love to show off how smart they are and as long as they go unchallenged, are prone to continue and even increase their display of said smarts. When challenged, they similarly tend to say "Aw the HELL with it" and stop posting so frequently after an initial period of attempting to defend whatever it is they get challenged on. It's a hard thing to put in few words so anyone who thinks they can splain it mo' betta is welcome to have at it. If not, then IdioT.SavanT.i4's Law and Corollaries it is. Since it is HIS page, I prefer to think of Raul as the final arbiter and will not add these myself. i4 23:42, 15 November 2006 (UTC)

A point[edit]

You mentioned that there is a high incidence of Wikipedia editors who are gay, transgendered, or furry. Have you also noticed the disproportionately high number of people with autism or symptoms of Asberger's syndrome? What could be the reason for this? -- 01:00, 15 December 2005 (UTC)

Autism/asperger's syndrome is well known to be associated with geeks, of which Wikipedia has a disproportionately large number (owing to the nature of the medium). Raul654 05:17, 15 December 2005 (UTC)
Add me to the count of asperger's geeks, then. ;) .* 09:38, 3 September 2006 (UTC)

Redwolf24's law and Semi-protection[edit]

This is why semi-protection is not as useful as some people seem to think. And sadly, it is spreading like wildfire. Pcb21 Pete 15:17, 25 December 2005 (UTC)

Reminds me of Pepperell, Massachusetts, where some guy from the Leighs lived there, and thought it was Wicked Awesome. On the other hand, new users/vandals won't known enough to vandalize random, less viewed articles, and it isn't as rewarding to them, as they won't be seen as frequently, which is where the flaw in the anti-semi logic is. -Mysekurity(have you seen this?) 05:16, 27 December 2005 (UTC)

Yet another law for your law page[edit]


I have a law for your law page.

Extreme Unction's First Law: If enough people act independently towards the same goal, the end result is indistinguishable from a conspiracy.

Corollary: In any sufficiently large social endeavor, there will always be some subset of people who fail to understand this law, and who will see conspiracies and cabals around every corner whenever their views fall into the minority.
Corollary to the corollary: As the number of people who independently conclude that you're a disruptive jerk increases, the likelihood that you're really a positive, constructive contributor who's merely run afoul of the "ruling elite" decreases. Not that there was ever a big chance of that to begin with.
Corollary to the corollary to the corollary: The people who most need to understand this law and its corollaries never will.

Hope you find them amusing and edifying.
Ξxtreme Unction|yakkity yak 08:22, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

Support! JFW | T@lk 13:47, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
Extreme cabal support! Carbonite | Talk 13:51, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

Another one occurred to me earlier this morning:

Extreme Unction's Second Law: No matter how patently ludicrous a given proposition may be, any sufficiently large online community will always have at least one person willing to defend that proposition.
Ξxtreme Unction|yakkity yak 15:13, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

Wow! Fantastic! Agree, as well as my blogmates! JFW | T@lk 18:12, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
Oooh, these are good. I have another two that I've been thinking of (the second one's a bit dubious, but I've observed it):
Grammy's law: If a user posts on User talk:Jimbo Wales about a dispute, that is a strong indication that the user in question is a) inexperienced or b) wrong.
Grammy's corollary: If a user starts coloring his posts in discussions, that is an indication that the user is going to post on User talk:Jimbo Wales soon.
Regards, grm_wnr Esc 15:56, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

One more rule[edit]

Carbonite's law: "The more a given user invokes Assume good faith as a defense, the lower the probability that said user was acting in good faith". Carbonite | Talk 15:59, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

I heartily endorse this product and/or service. Ξxtreme Unction|yakkity yak 16:20, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
Carbonite, why don't you try assuming good faith?? :) — 0918BRIAN • 2005-12-28 16:32
Because I'm in the cabal. Big fines for breaking the union rules. ;) Carbonite | Talk 16:33, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

I hate to be a petulant whiner, but...[edit]

I humbly request that I be allowed a small refactoring of my first law on your "Laws" page. My anal-retentive nature cries out at the large block of corollaries all mixed in with the basic law.

This is sheer personal aesthetics, of course, so I will understand fully if you would prefer your own aesthetic preferences to prevail within the realm of your own user space.

All the best.
Ξxtreme Unction|yakkity yak 18:21, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

I saw your edit making this switch - I am OK with it. Raul654 23:53, 28 December 2005 (UTC)
My anal-retentive nature thanks you profusely. =) Ξxtreme Unction|yakkity yak 00:08, 29 December 2005 (UTC)

Copyright law[edit]

You have a law which states, "For every one person who knows something about copyright law, there are at least ten who don't, and two who think they do but don't.". In my experience, it's more like "and twenty who think they do but don't". I can't count the number of times I've read some ignoramus spout of nonsense about words or phrases being "copyrighted", or defend blatant violations of the fair use doctrine, or completely misunderstand the most basic tenets of the GFDL. On the other hand, I don't think I've ever come across anyone who has plainly and willingly confessed his ignorance of copyright law. —Psychonaut 17:56, 29 December 2005 (UTC)

My compliments...[edit] Rob Church. Would that his law were chiselled into the doorsteps of WP:RFAr. Kosebamse 05:19, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

One more...[edit]

Extreme Unction's Third Law: For every reason cited as "this is why valuable long-term editors/admins are leaving Wikipedia", there is an equal and opposite reason which has already been cited by someone else.

All the best.
Ξxtreme Unction|yakkity yak 17:27, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

A Wikilawyering law - cheers[edit]

User:Benjamin Gatti's Law: The more a given user accuses others of avoiding the rules by Wikilawyering, the higher the probability that said user is ignoring all rules. Benjamin Gatti 02:42, 4 January 2006 (UTC)

User:Raul654/Raul's laws[edit]

So wait... do I count as one or three of these (re: #8)? ^_– ♥ GeekGirlSarah ♥ 18:43, 8 January 2006 (UTC)


As the number of articles on Wikipedia grows exponentially, the number of featured articles grows geometrically.

Possible corrolary: Although Wikipedia's overall quality will surely be better tomorrow than it is today, Wikipedia's average quality will only decline.

Possible corrolary: As the number of editors grows exponentially, the number of core contributers grows geometrically.

A bit pessimistic, but seems accurate. – Quadell (talk) (bounties) 20:11, 18 January 2006 (UTC)

  • We're all about pessimism around here! :) — 0918BRIAN • 2006-01-18 20:18
  • Maybe the standard for FA is increasing. Andjam 12:37, 14 May 2006 (UTC)

Deckiller's Laws[edit]

These were added [1] a few days ago by Deckiller himself and, in my opinion, seem to be significantly less insightful than the rest of the laws on the page. Just thought they might have slipped through and you hadn't noticed they were added. Carbonite | Talk 13:46, 20 January 2006 (UTC)

Heh, feel free to remove them. I thought it was all in good fun anyway. Deckiller 17:43, 20 January 2006 (UTC)
The laws are correct and I don't really disagree with them, it's mainly that they're a bit more...straightforward than the other laws. Don't get me wrong, they're good observations, but don't quite fit with the spirit of the page. Anyway, I'll leave them there and see what Raul thinks. Happy editing! Carbonite | Talk 17:49, 20 January 2006 (UTC)
Okay, I'll keep them up for now and see what he thinks. Deckiller 17:54, 20 January 2006 (UTC)
I have, perhaps foolishly, been leaving my proposed laws here on the talk page for Raul to add or not add as he sees fit, since it is "his" page. The idea of just willy-nilly adding my laws to his page without his prior approval is one I confess had not occurred to me. Ξxtreme Unction|yakkity yak 19:09, 20 January 2006 (UTC)
Nrcprm2026's postulate of anti-symmetrical bashfulness: The probability of any two people involved in a discussion respecting WP:OWN totals 1.5. --James S. 00:37, 10 February 2006 (UTC)

Proposed Essjay's second law[edit]

Essjay's second law - Wikipedia has no right to free speech. The First Amendment says "Congress shall make no law..."; we are not Congress, we are the cabal. [2]

I offered up this entry, which I feel is in the spirit of the others presented (especially Alhutch's law: "Editing Wikipedia is a privilege, not a right.") only to be reverted. Since 1) it's only a silly subpage, and 2) not my silly subpage, I'm bringing it to talk. Raul, you can decide whether it's fitting for your userspace. Essjay TalkContact 07:53, 19 February 2006 (UTC)

Hmm, I am not sure that laws that make the cabal look bad are appreciated Essjay ;). Pcb21 Pete 20:55, 20 February 2006 (UTC)
I think Wikipedians pretty much do have the right to free speech. Even when they blocked that Nazi user a while back, they had to cook up something about threats made off-site to justify it. Free speech isn't respected like it should be, and there are abuses, but I think it would be fair to say the right is generally recognized in the community, and it takes some serious determination and manipulation to override it. Everyking 10:19, 11 March 2006 (UTC)
We are using the term "right" very strictly, as in "inalienable right". There is no inalienable right to free speech on Wikipedia. There may be a weakly/strongly protected privilege to free speech, but there is no inalienable right to it. Johnleemk | Talk 10:28, 11 March 2006 (UTC)
A privilege? In what sense is it a privilege? "Right" is much more accurate: it is something accorded to all contributors. If it was a privilege, it would be something only a select few had, or something you had to earn, wouldn't it? We let people have the freedom to express their views in a civil way right from the get-go, no strings attached. I would define the exceptions to that as abuses which don't affect the basic nature of it. Everyking 10:34, 11 March 2006 (UTC)
A privilege need not be one accorded to a minority. And it is emphatically not accorded to all contributors. Otherwise we wouldn't be allowed to block or ban people. Johnleemk | Talk 10:39, 11 March 2006 (UTC)
Of course it's accorded to all contributors. You'll allowed to block people, sure, but not for expressing views in a civil manner. What does blocking a vandal or a revert warrior have to do with it? Everyking 10:45, 11 March 2006 (UTC)
John pretty much hit the nail on the head. The ability to edit wikipedia is a privilege (albeit one which is extended quite liberally). However, upon misbehavior, it can be revoked. If you get yourself blocked or banned, that privelege has been revoked. Everyking's comments that it's a right simply do not match reality. Raul654 22:20, 11 March 2006 (UTC)
As far as I can tell, you have no comprehension of the difference between a right and a privilege; either that, or you're obscuring the difference because the idea of editors having no rights appeals to you. If something is automatically granted to everyone, without them having to do anything to earn it, it's a right. If something is specially granted to a certain group of people, which may or may not entail doing some action to earn it, it's a privilege. Editing is a right, for instance; adminship is a privilege. By no means does a privilege have to be restricted to a minority, as John above suggested I was claiming; think of driver's licenses, for instance. I have no idea what sort of concept of the relationship between privileges and rights is behind Raul and John's argument. I have a feeling it has to do with the idea that a privilege can be revoked, but in fact rights can be revoked as well—this is what happens when people are imprisoned for committing crimes. A right is not something that is guaranteed to you unconditionally. Everyking 04:42, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
(indent shift) I said back up there that we are talking about inalienable rights. In the real world, a right is revoked after you have been proven guilty of something, but on Wikipedia it can (but practically never is) be revoked just because the community agrees they don't like you. Also, in case you missed it, there are conditions for exercising the privilege of "free speech" on Wikipedia, namely: 1) No personal attacks; 2) Be civil; 3) Don't do it in an inappropriate place (e.g. an article), etc. "Free speech" is not accorded automatically. Just because you can edit practically anything doesn't mean you have the right to do it. The Wikimedia Foundation by default grants the privilege to edit to anyone with an internet connection, but it is free to revoke this privilege whenever it likes for whatever reason. In the real world, your rights cannot be revoked without a good reason shown in a court of law (in most cases; things like the PATRIOT Act are an exception). Editing Wikipedia is a privilege, not a right. Johnleemk | Talk 08:54, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
What I said in the first place was that free speech is recognized as a right by the community in general. I didn't say the foundation recognized it, but I consider that irrelevant. What I have been dealing with is how things operate in practice.
Anyway. Editing Wikipedia cannot possibly be considered a privilege if it is granted universally and automatically, as I explained. It would only be a privilege if it was granted to specific people (as I pointed out, like adminship). Something that is granted to all and later taken away from specific individuals who have violated policy clearly falls under the definition of a right, analogous to the situation of the rights of free persons who can lose their rights if they commit crimes. I think my distinction between editing rights and adminship privileges really sums up the issue about as neatly as possible. Everyking 09:21, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
I don't see any distinct gap between how the community and the Foundation address free speech. You're free to do pretty much what you want, as long as you don't piss off enough people to get you lynched (of course, what constitutes "enough people" can vary greatly depending on the circumstance) or piss off the Board. Nearly everyone in both Wikipedia and the Foundation recognises this. However, a problem is that your definition of a "right" differs from mine. It is not enough for a privilege to be automatically granted to all for it to become a right. The revocation of a right is not as simple as the revocation of a privilege. On Wikipedia, editing is a privilege because you don't have to violate policy to be blocked. The Foundation can block you because they don't like the colour of your socks. In practice, this would never occur (I hope), but the fact that this possibility is a distinct one indicates that there is no absolute inalienable right to free speech on Wikipedia, which is what I mean when I talk about the distinction between a right and a privilege. Johnleemk | Talk 15:00, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
Just in case it's been missed, Raul decided to put the law in. Essjay TalkContact 10:31, 11 March 2006 (UTC)

The legendary brick of common sense[edit]

The rarest, most sought after award on Wikipedia is Raul's Brick of Common Sense. It's like the Nobel Prize of Wikipedia Dynamics.

I would like to know where Raul got that idea from. -ZeroTalk 08:04, 19 February 2006 (UTC)

Which part? The brick? Raul654 08:05, 19 February 2006 (UTC)
No. The "The rarest, most sought after award on Wikipedia is Raul's Brick of Common Sense. It's like the Nobel Prize of Wikipedia Dynamics." summary. -ZeroTalk 08:07, 19 February 2006 (UTC)
The part about being "the rarest, most sought after prize" is me being facetious. (Although, given that only 3 have been given out, it could very well be one of the rarest wikiawards). Raul654 08:12, 19 February 2006 (UTC)
Okay. I was simply curious; I prefer Tireless contributor barnstars myself. -ZeroTalk 08:14, 19 February 2006 (UTC)
True, but still rarer is the "Does exactly what Pcb21 would do all the time, even if its wrong, but isn't him" Award. Pcb21 Pete 21:06, 20 February 2006 (UTC)

Not sure about this one:[edit]

UVnet's comment: In practice, wikipedia is a sort of anarchy. [3]

Circeus 19:46, 20 February 2006 (UTC)

Rule 5[edit]

Rule 5 is an observation of the dialectic at work. Someone writes an article (thesis), someone else disagrees (antithesis), they edit war until reaching a consensus (synthesis). That version becomes the new thesis as the process starts over again with new users arriving and challenging the previously agreed-upon version with their views (i.e. the new antithesis). A new synthesis results. This goes on and on and on.—thames 22:04, 14 March 2006 (UTC)

Demi-Godwin's law[edit]

This is a smaller version of Godwin's law. It says that in any prolonged content dispute, one side will eventually accuse the other of censorship. Phr 14:34, 21 March 2006 (UTC)

Knucmo2's second law[edit]

(Was removed by Knucmo2], something I don't blame him for.)

The Wikimedia Foundation owns the Wikipedia servers. By nature, the content on these servers would be uneditable, but the Wikimedia Foundation grants anyone the privilege to edit. A right is something you would naturally have. A privilege is something you have to be given, even if it is given en masse. Johnleemk | Talk 19:02, 15 April 2006 (UTC)

Raul's Razor[edit]

"Raul's Razor - An article is neutral if, after reading it, you cannot tell where the author's sympathies lie. An article is not neutral if, after reading it, you can tell where the author's sympathies lie."

Consider the article about Intelligent design. This article accurately quotes proponents of the Intelligent Design movement as calling it creationism to their supporters while denying that it's creationism when speaking to the general public.

No author sympathetic to intelligent design would put that in the article.

There are other cases; for instance, Xenu. Anyone who would write an article describing such a self-evidently ridiculous belief of Scientologists, whose mere existence casts Scientology in an unflattering light, does not sympathize with Scientology. Ken Arromdee 20:33, 24 May 2006 (UTC)

No author sympathetic to intelligent design would put that in the article. - our article are *not* supposed to be sympathetic to design - they are supposed to be neutral. And if ID proponents are saying one thing in private and anoter thing to the public, and especially if that thing happens to go to the heart of the debate (about whether or not ID is the thin edge of the wedge) then any neutral writer would be remiss not to include it. Raul654 20:36, 24 May 2006 (UTC)
A problem with the phrasing of the razor is that it's useful for an article written by a single author, but how many of those do we have on Wikipedia? --jpgordon∇∆∇∆ 22:43, 15 June 2006 (UTC)
[O]ur article are *not* supposed to be sympathetic to design - they are supposed to be neutral. --- it seems to me that you are contradicting your law. After reading the article, you can tell where the author's sympathies lie, but this does not make the article POV: an objective view of ID has no option but to expose its contradiction.
Another problem with this law is that the most dangerous POV is when you can't tell: the disinformation campaigns run by Big Oil and Tobacco look like NPOV, but aren'ts --User:Taejo|대조 21:13, 9 April 2007 (UTC)


And of course, there are the accusations of cabalism.

I read "cannibalism" for "cabalism". It made me smile :) - FrancisTyers 10:14, 26 May 2006 (UTC)

Proposed law[edit]

I'm not sure if this is already a law.. maybe... As the size of the community grows larger, their willingness to change any aspect of a high-traffic article decreases. (eg: the main page redesign contest; or the permalocked GWB article) — BRIAN0918 • 2006-06-02 21:54

Move by User:Zero[edit]

I have moved this to Wikipedia:Raul654/Raul's laws. Its quite apparent this document holds serious views on the workings and process of the encyclopedia and its community. Such popular and callobarated documents should be moved to wikipedia namespace as appropriate. -ZeroTalk 13:57, 11 June 2006 (UTC)

Raul is much too humble to allow that. He's moved it back. No worries. -ZeroTalk 13:49, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

User:Raul654/Raul's laws[edit]

It's broadly good, but the silly comment inserted by a user about anal and spelling cannot possibly be considered a "law" or serious, so I've removed that one. I've assumed good faith, but the comment made with the clear intent to joke and not output a serious view on the project looked boldly out of place in line with everything else. I was operating under the assumption this subpage was a serious attempt to gather views and comprehend personal laws from the community, not another area for jokes made at the expense of other users. I've percieved its wide latitude of negative user inclusion as a personal attack despite the seeminly joke-inclined pretense and henced removed it under WP:RPA. -ZeroTalk 13:45, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Uh, who exactly am I "attacking"? (Notice the scare quotes.) There are, in my opinion worse "laws" here, such as "Don't be a silly sausage." ;-) And mine falls directly in line with the corollary. If you wanted to trim the fat, trim it all. --You Know Who (Dark Mark) 14:03, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Being a "silly sausage" makes reference to being needlessly difficult or performing acts of defamatory actions not in the best interests of an area, which usually spells trouble. That's why its a law. Although this is of course open to a user's intepretation. If you'd like me to remove the second law of mine along with the silliness, I've no problem with that.
Who are you attacking..? I felt attacked. It was a inflammatory comment though not intentionally so. I presume you are not aware many people use capital letters in edit summeries a large percentage of the time. David Gerald's law isn't provocative because the comment is meant to target an audiance that doesn't exsist (no one uses full stop at the end of every summary). So there's no problem. Every law and comment here I precieve to have a meaning in tie with a person's view on wikipedia and is added in a tone of serious addition. Your corollary doesn't posess one. Its but a comment added in sillines with no purpose. And per the removal of personal attacks I will continue to remove it. Defamatory language has no place on wikipedia. Perhaps you could rewrite it.-ZeroTalk 14:12, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Wow. Interesting. You may want to check my contribs. I happen to end many, many of my edit summaries with a full stop. In order for something to be a personal attack, a person must be attacked. And by the way, saying someone is anal is hardly an attack anyway. It does not mean they are an ass, it means they are particular to an extreme. My sub-corollary is not "inflammatory" as anyone reading it would obviously see it is a sarcastic comment, but probably valid nonetheless. Is fun no longer allowed to be had? --You Know Who (Dark Mark) 14:20, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
I'm not attempting to convey that. There's plenty of time for fun. I just didn't percive this as the appropriate place for games. And if I offended you by my comment, I apologize.
I didn't think, nor believe humor or silly jokes to be the center of additions to the page. I tend to be incorrect in my beliefs on occassion. Perhaps we can inquire Raul about it and verify this. -ZeroTalk 14:28, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
As of this post I have removed both comments; the "silly sausage" and "the anal" statements. I believe Raul intented the document to include the serious tone of editors who believed in personal views of the encyclopedia and where its going. I take it very seriously. I could be wrong; but I don't recall a humor/silliness tag or note of such anywhere on the subpage. -ZeroTalk 14:18, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Oh get off it. This page is no more serious than BJAODN. Sure, a lot of these rules are true (in fact, most are), but this page is designed for fun, not as an actual reference or something that needs to be taken fully seriously. -^demon[yell at me][ubx_war_sux] /14:39, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
Well I do tend to take many aspects of wipedia seriously. Perhaps too much, and I may have read into it. I will contend that this is far above BJAODN, however and indicates meaningful viewpoints by the community. I don't reference it, though I do venture to regard the serious laws and opinions added with a level of respect. -ZeroTalk 14:55, 12 June 2006 (UTC)
This page was not intended as a humor page - simply a page for practical observations about the day-to-day operations of Wikipedia. I do appreciate it when people cite the page - it means this page is doing its job. Raul654 16:18, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Thanks for your help[edit]

Just a quick note to say thanks for answering my question about creating a user name.--Cardinal Newman 02:01, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

you're welcome Raul654 02:14, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

nice one[edit]

You've made here such a nice essay Michael. Good job --Walter Humala Crystal Clear app korganizer.png|wanna Talk? 17:25, 21 November 2006 (UTC)

Who's Michael? Raul654 13:17, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

Counterpoint to #1[edit]

I've added a counterpoint to law #1 that refutes half of it. Content may be overseen by a core group but contributed by a larger more anonymous set.[4] Hu 13:12, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

I disagree with both halves of that point. It is natural for active editors to be most familiar with other editors, to highlight in their experience and their minds works that can be attributed to a lasting identity or personality and not to an amorphous constellation of less known or anonymous input. Longstanding users spend the supermajority of effort spent on reading and writing self-reflection, starting and ending internal disputes, and other metacontent -- again inflating their perceived proportion of all contributions. And longstanding users are the ones who tend to learn how to make tends of thousands of small edits, programmatically or in an efficient and highly-subdivided fashion, making edit count and other metrics overstate their activity. However, half of the significant new content added to the site is contributed by new, occasional, or anonymous users; and the 'core' of active users contributing the other half numbers close to ten thousand. +sj + 23:24, 6 May 2007 (UTC)
Anonymous contributions come in three flavors: vandalism and tests, which is reverted, small copyedits, which is retained, and "I-think-that-this-should-be-in-here-so-I'm-putting-it-in" edits. Major change stems from the last kind, which is then integrated and assimilated into existing text by the more experienced users. While I admire those veterans who still go out and actively contribute to articles, most users who have been here long enough work at either administrative tasks or "watchlist edits": keeping a handful of articles clear of vandalism on un-wikified text, but not proactively going out and expand one's horizons.--HereToHelp 00:50, 7 May 2007 (UTC)

Rule 8[edit]

I think that, unless you have a survey to prove its validity, that this 'rule' is very discriminative and homophobic. Joke or not, it shouldn't be there if it's not true. Algebra man 01:37, 31 December 2006 (UTC)

It's one person's impression. You'd have more of a case if we weren't on his subpage... --Kizor 00:57, 22 January 2007 (UTC)

Zeroeth Law[edit]

The zeroeth law is attributed to unknown, but I see it, or perhaps a variant, has been attributed to/by User:Gareth_Owen. -Reagle 13:43, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

It's getting attributed to me here and there after I quoted it in the NY times article on the Vtech massacre. This isn't about to become common, but just so that you know. :/ --Kizor 05:32, 16 May 2007 (UTC)
I just removed my name from after the law on the list, so just to clarify, I did not originate it in any way. Or did I, and just didn't know about it? Have I been Tyler longer and longer? --Kizor 11:17, 11 July 2007 (UTC)

Partial Hungarian translation[edit]

FYI, I started to translate some of the laws that I found insightful: hu:User:Nyenyec/Raul és mások törvényei.

I hope you don't mind.

Cheers, nyenyec  16:14, 15 June 2007 (UTC)


People need to learn what corollary means in the context of laws and theories. The first couple comical misuses of the word were funny, after a while it just takes away from an otherwise valid comment. BigNate37(T) 04:39, 16 July 2007 (UTC)

A bunch of them aren't even "laws". Among Raul's own, for instance, predicting what's going to happen in two years is hardly a long-standing generality. It's a throwaway comment and I don't know why he's felt the need to preserve and name it. 21:42, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
You'll frequently find on lists of "Laws", particularly on the Internet, that "corollaries" are not laws that follow from previous ones, but merely closely related ones. For example, in the Rules of Anime Physics, Law #11, the Law of Inherent Combustibility ("Everything explodes. Everything."), has as its first corollary "Everything that explodes bulges first.". Confusing Manifestation 06:39, 16 July 2007 (UTC)

Let me explain myself.[edit]

I belong to several different minorities, oppressed and otherwise. I've noticed these behavioral patterns among my fellow minoritarians, for any given minority. And while I understand perfectly well that the "burden of proof" for why my observations should be included on this page rests with none other than myself, I'd like at least to hear a reason why they should not.

See this diff if you don't know what the heck I'm talking about. - (), 15:02, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

I strongly disagree that "minorities" are a homogeneous group that has specific patterns of behavior. Not to mention that there are many different types of minorities, such as racial, political, socio-economic, etc. I've seen no evidence on Wikipedia that all types of minorities act in such a similar manner that 3 laws are deserved. Chaz Beckett 17:48, 14 October 2007 (UTC)
Please state how the post is "highly offensive". First, this is a userpage and the owner has given Wikipedians the freedom to create their own laws and add them here. Obviously there is a limit to what one can post: if something is libel, sensational, or blatantly untrue, it should be removed. However, I fail to see how these "laws" are "highly offensive".
I agree that minority groups are not homogeneous, however, minority groups would not exist if it were not for sharing some sort of common characteristic. While all labels and stereotypes are bad, many exist because they are natural. For instance, Christians, Muslims, and Jews are all groups, and can be "minority groups" depending on what part of the world they exist in. There are perfectly legitimate reasons why these "minority group" would want to portray a certain image. After all, it makes sense for these groups to produce wiki pages about themselves to further understanding by individuals who are not within their group.
I do not exist's three laws merely state that:
1) Articles on Wikipedia in reference to a group will be closely watched by members in that group.
2) Objective (and fringe) members of that particular group tend not to edit articles about the group.
3) Editing or criticizing a particular group's Wikipedia articles, categories, userboxes or users results in the members of the group claiming they are being oppressed.
I think this could be mistaken for being homophobic or racist or biased, however, these three rules can be applied to non-controversial and benign subjects just as often as to subjects pertaining to race, gender, sexuality, ect.
For instance, think of any group with a large number of fanboys. Star Trek/anime/video game fans are all minority groups. Many members of these groups check wiki pages about episodes or characters pertaining to their group (rule #1). The more involved in the particular group a user is, the more likely the user is to edit the pages about the group's interests (rule #2). An attempt to edit/delete/remove articles that are deemed offensive or that do not belong in wikipedia results in name calling and claiming that the individuals who wish to remove the content are oppressing that group (rule #3), whether this is actually true or not. I'm sure fanboys of all types have claimed that individuals nominating their pages/userboxes/categories for deletion are acting as "agents" for a "competing" group.
When you look at it this way, the laws hold true and are not offensive. Perhaps the problem is when individuals can only associate the term "minority group" with the sensational ones. Like it or not Herd Mentality exists, and stating that the herds tend to act this way in general shouldn't offend anyone. I draw the line at listing stereotypes (like stating that all members of a particular group X are Y), and that clearly hasn't been done in this case. - Eulerskunk 00:32, 15 October 2007 (UTC)

Translation into Spanish[edit]

Hi Raul. I think that your Laws contain a substantial amount of Wikipedian wisdom and decided that it would be worthwile to translate them into Spanish. The work is now complete: Usuario:Hispalois/Leyes de Raul sobre Wikipedia.

Best regards. --Hispalois 22:10, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Discussion moved from Laws by others[edit]

  1. Piotrus' Principle; If it's worth proving on the talk page, it's probably worth mentioning in the article.
    • Piotrus hasn't said this, but he acts on it. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 00:12, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
      • Is this a personal attack? (Perhaps it should be proven on the talk page…)--HereToHelp 00:25, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
        • On the contrary, it's high praise; I'm thinking primarily of this edit, which absorbed a long talk page discussion about a handful of phrases into the article. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 00:49, 13 November 2007 (UTC)
          • Never mind. Actually, I can think of a few other examples myself, so I guess it's more true than it looked at first glance.--HereToHelp 01:39, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Deterioration of quality? Less-than-serious comments?[edit]

It would seem that my Second Law is already proving itself correct: more and more theories are written into the page, often with no proof or credibility. I am not citing any specific examples, but this is a general feeling that I am getting, especially from the middle of the list and thereafter. Even a couple of my own laws might be more theoretical than what could be argued to be appropriate. Perhaps some kind of general review would be in order? This page is tagged as a Wikipedia essay, after all; if nothing else, a review would help to remove redundancies (which are present to a degree and will become all the more abundant as time passes), as well as either eliminate or note conflicts between laws. Waltham, The Duke of 23:05, 1 January 2008 (UTC)

I thought the same thing, which tempted me to add my own law to the list: "Writing Featured Articles, Did You Know entries, or new items to Raul's laws will not make one more attractive to people of the appropriate sex, improve the content of a resume, more intelligent, or even gain respect from other Wikipedians. Yet Wikipedians who know this continue to do so with alarming enthusiasm. No one knows why; experts still can't explain why people contribute to Wikipedia in the first place." -- 20:42, 29 July 2008 (UTC)

law 14[edit]

I am not sure why "Given a communication forum with a sufficiently high concentration of trolls, the trolls will do a superb job of discrediting themselves" works. I am curious to find out why would people think it is anything more than a correlation. Nergaal (talk) 05:31, 27 January 2008 (UTC)

Too many queers?[edit]

Referring to item #8: a "disproportionate number of gays, transgendered, and furries." Umm, has somebody counted? When did that happen? Do bears get counted as gay and furry? What about all the bi people, how do they rank? Not to mention the closet cases, and those who are only gay on weekends? And how I can I verify that I was counted in the right category? Ooooh, I'm not gonna sleep at all over this one . . . .  ;-) Textorus (talk) 03:51, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

Question about Geogre's law[edit]

As currently listed on this page, Geogre's law and its corollary state:

Geogre's law: Any biographical article with a minuscule last name is already in trouble.

  • Kwsn's Corollary: more so if the first letter of the last name isn't capitalized.

The corollary seems just a little bit redundant to me. Is it possible Kwsn could have forgotten about the use of "minuscule" as a term meaning lower case? Is there an intentional play on words here (i.e., a different meaning of minuscule)? Or am I missing something else? How should the text be modified to clarify this? (talk) 05:18, 11 July 2008 (UTC)

At least it's spelt right. I've come across "miniscule" in a dictionary. Peter jackson (talk) 10:35, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

How fun! Two questions[edit]

This is a fun page! I have two questions/issues.

Q1: "Raul's Razor – An article is neutral if, after reading it, you cannot tell where the author's sympathies lie." That might work anywhere BUT Wikipedia. Here we get schizophrenic sentences like, "Many experts agree that the Bush administration was corrupt, self-interested, and a big pile of shit. On the other hand, many experts agree that the Bush administration was the first in history to achieve the values of Christian rule and to strike the perfect balance between competing concerns." The sympathies of that "author" are inscrutable because he's going NPOV in both directions. Because he's actually two people.

Q2: Also, QUESTION RE: "For every one person who knows something about copyright law, there are at least ten who don't, and two who think they do but don't." Do the two people who do belong to the ten who don't? Perhaps you want to say, "For every one person who knows something about copyright law, there are at least ten who don't, including two who think they do."

-user:Agradman. (talk) 03:19, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

On the first, last I looked at Spanish Civil War, the lead took the Republican side while the main body of the article took the Francoist side. Peter jackson (talk) 11:18, 9 November 2010 (UTC)
Looks better now. Peter jackson (talk) 11:24, 9 November 2010 (UTC)

Loved the complaints rule[edit]

Loved the complaint rule. A very funny story along those lines is Moose Turd Pie; WP mentions it at Gandy_dancer#Popular culture Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 12:32, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

Omniferous's Law of Deep Thought[edit]

(176.) Omniferous's Law of Deep Thought- One who is willing to read enough of the rules so as to reach this far on the list must have, in some part of them, an urge to conform and therefore obey the rules, seeing as they wish for a better understanding of the mechanics of this community.

Random reader's contradiction: One who is willing to read enough of the rules so as to reach this far on the list must have been really, really bored.
Or - ...must have, in some part of them, an urge to read all the funny bits. (talk) 15:47, 6 August 2011 (UTC)