Tricky and Lengthy Dispute Resolution
The Arbitration Committee opened no cases this week, leaving two open.
This case concerns accusations of wiki-hounding and disruptive editing. Stevertigo alleges that several editors deem his editing to be "disruptive" or "in need of banning" because they "still hold the grudge that previous cases did not find in their favor regarding [Stevertigo]". He also alleges that he "largely won" an argument against two editors in relation to the Time article, and that those two editors began editing the Punishment article due to an undue interest in Stevertigo's editing rather than due to an interest in the article. The case is currently in the evidence and workshop phase; participants have started making submissions in both phases.
Innovations have been introduced for this case, including special rules of conduct that were put in place at the start of the arbitration. However, the handling of the case has been the subject of criticism; for example, although the evidence and workshop pages were closed for an extended period, no proposals were posted on the proposed decision page and participants were prevented from further discussing their case on the case pages (see earlier Signpost coverage). More criticisms were expressed recently (examples:  ) but as reported last week, a workshop will be held where users may provide feedback. The proposed decision, drafted by Newyorkbrad, Risker, and Rlevse, sparked a large quantity of unstructured discussion, much of it comprising concerns about the proposed decision (see earlier Signpost coverage). A number of users, including participants and arbitrators, made the discussion more structured, but the quantity of discussion continued to increase significantly in the weeks that have followed leading to arbitrators closing or archiving discussions more frequently. Rlevse had said that arbitrators were trying to complete the proposed decision before September 6, but it was later made clear that he will no longer be voting on this decision.
Concerns and questions have been raised about the proposed findings of fact which relate to sockpuppetry in the CC topic area. At the centre of controversy is the proposal alleging that:
...a significant proportion of accounts (20-40% by current checkuser estimates) blocked as Scibaby [a now banned-editor, were] subsequently determined to be unrelated....
This week, participants pointed out that the AUSC report (which the figure is based on) only dealt with range-blocks by one individual (a former arbitrator, who in particular circumstances in 2009, resigned his access to CheckUser and Oversight tools). In response to the concerns about the accuracy of the proposal, arbitrator Coren emphasised that the figure is an estimate, while arbitrator Carcharoth stated that he is still satisfied that there is an overreaction to the banned user. However, other participants have considered the approach as unconstructive, expressing concerns about the use of seemingly “outdated figures, which are confusingly billed as "current" checkuser estimates” and the making of statements which may unfairly malign “the people who are presently working on handling the sock puppetry”. Another participant also noted that other parts of the finding may need to be “reworded” due to the circumstances. All eight arbitrators who are voting on this decision continue to support the proposal as worded; arbitrators Newyorkbrad and Carcharoth stated that they are open to further explaining or simply dropping the figure, but no changes have been made at the time of writing.
Update: Earlier today, the proposal was reworded. The proposal now states that
...a significant proportion of Scibaby-related blocks (including range blocks), particularly before late 2009, were subsequently determined to be excessive or incorrect....
A motion to close the decision was initiated by arbitrator Coren.
|Proposals that are passing for the decision
- A discretionary sanctions scheme that was specifically tailored for the CC case & topic (see earlier Signpost coverage concerning discretionary sanctions clarification)
- Committee reminders to editors and administrators
- Committee encouragement to administrators and checkusers
- An evidence sub-page remedy (see earlier Signpost coverage of a similar remedy)
- Rulings concerning 16 editors (including 2 former administrators), 2 current administrators, and 1 current ombudsman/functionary (a former steward)
|Rulings in relation to the 19 individuals
- 1 administrator significantly edited CC content issues previously and should not participate as an uninvolved administrator in CC sanction requests.
- All 18 other users made significant contributions towards a battleground atmosphere in their capacity as editors or administrators.
- The other administrator is topic-banned from CC (no reference has been made to involvement or significant content edits).
- 16 editors (including a former administrator who invoked his right to vanish during the case) are topic-banned from CC.
- No remedies are passing in relation to the ombudsman/functionary.
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