On 10.06.2016 12:53, Sandra Fauconnier wrote:
On 10 Jun 2016, at 12:39, Yellowcard
However, there are single statements (!) that
are proven to be correct (possibly in connection with qualifiers) and
are no subject to being changed in future. Locking these statements
would make them much less risky to obtain them and use them directly in
Wikipedia. What would be the disadvantage of this, given that slightly
experienced users can still edit them and the lock is only a protection
against anonymous vandalism?
I agree 100%, and would like to add (again) that this would also make our data more
reliable for re-use outside Wikimedia projects.
There’s a huge scala of possibilities between locking harshly (no-one can edit it
anymore) and leaving stuff entirely open. I disagree that just one tiny step away from
‘entirely open’ betrays the wiki principle.
I don't want to argue about principles :-). What matters is just how
users perceive things. If they come to the site and want to make a
change, and they cannot, you have to make sure that they understand why
and what to do to fix it. The more you require them to learn and do
before they are allowed to contribute, the more of them you will lose
along the way. If a statement is not editable, then the (new or old)
user has to:
(1) be told why this is the case
(2) be told what to do to change it anyway or at least to tell somebody
to have a look at it (because there will always be errors, even in the
These things are difficult to get right.
There is a lot of discussion in recent years as to why new editors turn
their back on Wikipedia after a short time, and one major cause is that
many of their first edits get reverted very quickly, often by automated
tools. I think the reasons for the reverting are often valid, so it is a
short-term improvement to the content, yet it severely hurts the
community. Therefore, whenever one discusses new measure to stop or undo
edits, one should also discuss how to avoid this negative effect.
I completely agree that there is a lot of middle ground to consider,
without having to go to an extreme lock-down. However, things tend to
develop over time, and I think it is fair to say that many Wikipedias
have become more closed as they evolved. I am not eager to speed up this
(natural, unavoidable?) process for Wikidata too much.
The pros and cons of flagged revisions have been discussed in breadth on
several Wikipedias, with diverse outcomes, so it is probably a tricky
thing to settle on a conclusion here.
Faculty of Computer Science
Technische Universität Dresden
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