New case accepted, four open cases, terms begin for new arbitrators
The Arbitration Committee opened one new case this week, bringing the number of open cases to a total of four. As a result of the recent election, four new arbitrators took their seats for the first time.
On January 1, 2012, four new editors began their terms as members of the Arbitration Committee. The new arbitrators are Courcelles (Audit Subcommittee), Hersfold (former arbitrator and a former clerk), AGK (former Chair of the Mediation Committee), and SilkTork, all of whom were elected to serve for two-year terms. New members who did not already have oversight and checkuser permissions were granted such permissions on the start of their terms. Four sitting arbitrators were returned at the election: Risker, Roger Davies, and Kirill Lokshin were elected for two-year terms; Jclemens will serve for a one-year term.
With the entry of new arbitrators, assignments to internal sub-committees have been shifted.
The three arbitrator members of the Audit Subcommittee (AUSC) will be incoming member AGK, and current arbitrators David Fuchs and Jclemens. With the promotion of community representatives Courcelles and AGK of the AUSC into the full ArbCom, the only at-large community member of the subcommittee is Keegan. Arbitrator PhilKnight said that the committee is discussing the two empty seats on AUSC and a "formal announcement will follow shortly". The AUSC deals with scrutiny and review of oversight and checkuser functions.
The Ban Appeals Subcommittee (BASC) will consist of Elen of the Roads, PhilKnight, and new arbitrator Hersfold.
The committee opened this case after a record number of statements were posted. The case concerns the actions of several administrators and users revolving around a perceived instance of incivility by Malleus Fatuorum and several consequent blocks and unblocks. Several arbitrators recused themselves before the start of the evidence phase.
With a draft target of January 12 to complete both evidence and workshop phases, decision drafters Risker and Hersfold have to contend with at least 23 submissions. So far, this is a total of about 140 diffs and a great deal of analysis to comb through.
The case involves accusations of "disruptive editing" in debates over the retention and usage of images of Muhammad. The evidence target has been set for January 11 by drafter AGK. 14 editors have since posted evidence submissions, which have included concerns about specific users involved in the debates.
Drafter AGK also posted questions to involved parties regarding issues such as image use and the inclusion of secondary sources.
The evidence and workshop phases are now coming to a close. A proposed decision is due by January 16 and will be drafted by Roger Davies, Jclemens, and Elen of the Roads. The case involves the appeal of a ban on TimidGuy imposed by Jimmy Wales on alleged POV and conflict-of-interest issues.
Several arbitrators posted proposed principles, findings of fact, and analysis of evidence in the case workshop. Several proposed principles deal with the process of imposing a ban and the illegitimacy of "secret bans" (which is a disputed element of the case).
Now in its ninth week, the case is in a late stage of the workshopping and drafting of a final decision. Discussion by arbitrators has centered on proposals by several committee members. No date for a final decision has been posted.
Other requests and committee action
- A request for arbitration (Greyhood and Putin) is likely to be rejected, with five arbitrators declining review.
- A request for amendment (Abortion amendment) proposes a binding RfC as a new remedy.
- There are four requests for clarification in an arbitration committee decision, which are presently being discussed by different members of the committee.
- In an announcement by Risker, three retiring arbitrators will remain on pending cases until those cases are completed.
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