Abd ul-Rahman Lomax wrote:
> At 12:04 PM 12/21/2009, David Gerard wrote:
>> This is the one you were taken to arbitration over, and was the source
>> of your proposal that experts be banned from editing articles on their
> Not at all, completely incorrect, even though asserted with succinct
> (3) I did propose, not that experts be banned from editing articles
> in their field of expertise, but that they be, on the one hand,
> considered to have a conflict of interest in general, and thus
> obligated to refrain from controversial editing *of articles*, but,
> on the other hand, generally protected as to expressing expert
> opinion on Talk pages. We should respect experts. WMC sometimes was
> quite reasonable when it came to actual facts and finding compromise
> text; the problem was when he used his administrative tools to
> enforce his position.
We have moved from the "smoke without fire" assertions at the head of
this thread to this "distinction without a difference".
It needs to be said, tirelessly, that we do not consider anyone to have
a conflict of interest unless they are putting their other interests
ahead of the encyclopedia's. (Strangely enough, in a part of the post I
snipped, you were making some comments and claims about the misuse of
technical language in climate change articles. You are doing precisely
this shuffle in involving COI in a sense that has no necessary
application to WP in this manner.)
At 12:04 PM 12/21/2009, David Gerard wrote:
>2009/12/21 Abd ul-Rahman Lomax <abd(a)lomaxdesign.com>:
> > The article was likely overstated. However, the editor involved did
> > have a substantial history of using administrative tools with respect
> > to global warming and related articles, as well as extensive editing
> > in the area, taking a consistent position, supporting a consistent
> > point of view. I encountered this myself when I helped avoid the
> > deletion of an RfC that was written by Raul654, certified by WMC,
> > then it was noticed that Raul had not certified it. Then I read the
> > RfC and was horrified, and that was the beginning of my involvement
> > with WMC and others active with the global warming article.
>This is the one you were taken to arbitration over, and was the source
>of your proposal that experts be banned from editing articles on their
Not at all, completely incorrect, even though asserted with succinct
(1) The RfC mentioned did not lead to any ArbComm case. I was not
"taken to arbitration." I filed the case over a ban by an involved
administrator, and no RfC was undertaken because it had become
apparent that it would merely multiply words with no benefit, and
ArbComm agreed and took the case.
(2) The only mention of global warming in the case was evidence that
I presented that WMC was involved negatively with me prior to his
unilateral declaration of a ban of me from Cold fusion. I did not
claim he was involved with Cold fusion, but that he was involved with
me, that it was a personal dispute. With regard to a situation where
he wheel-warred with Jennavecia over the protection of the Global
warming article, I pointed out that he quite explicitly, in
discussing this, admitted a view of a clique of editors maintaining
that article, against outsiders and interlopers and trolls, and
anyone disagreeing, not merely on the topic of global warming, but
simply with WMC's approach as being in conflict with fundamental
Wikipedia policy, was one of these. Meddlers. These meddlers, in
fact, include sitting arbitrators.
(3) I did propose, not that experts be banned from editing articles
in their field of expertise, but that they be, on the one hand,
considered to have a conflict of interest in general, and thus
obligated to refrain from controversial editing *of articles*, but,
on the other hand, generally protected as to expressing expert
opinion on Talk pages. We should respect experts. WMC sometimes was
quite reasonable when it came to actual facts and finding compromise
text; the problem was when he used his administrative tools to
enforce his position.
>Global warming nutters are really special.
Not. Nutters are nutters. But I'm not a global warming skeptic, is
Mr. Gerard attempting to imply that I am? My concern wasn't WMC's
point of view on global warming, as such, but the use of
administrative tools by him and others, to favor that point of view,
by quick blocks and bans of editors with different points of view,
and the support of this by a clique with consistent, long-term revert
warring as distinct from following consensus process. The skeptical
position was utterly rejected, instead of appropriately being
incorporated as supported by reliable sources, and according to due
weight, as found through consensus.
As an example, the major scientific report on global warming, I
forget the title, contained precise definitions of the terms used,
which were not necessarily what one would commonly assume.
Incorporating these precise definitions into the article, however,
would slightly dilute the polemic effect of simply presenting the
conclusions without defining the terms. And that was rejected. Too
much detail. Too confusing to readers. Whitewashing. Anyone who has
watched the global warming articles, long-term, would see what was
happening, and it happened over and over for years. This produces a
reaction, which reaction includes Scibaby and all the rangeblock
damage, negative press, etc. Predictable.
2009/12/21 Abd ul-Rahman Lomax <abd(a)lomaxdesign.com>:
> The article was likely overstated. However, the editor involved did
> have a substantial history of using administrative tools with respect
> to global warming and related articles, as well as extensive editing
> in the area, taking a consistent position, supporting a consistent
> point of view. I encountered this myself when I helped avoid the
> deletion of an RfC that was written by Raul654, certified by WMC,
> then it was noticed that Raul had not certified it. Then I read the
> RfC and was horrified, and that was the beginning of my involvement
> with WMC and others active with the global warming article.
This is the one you were taken to arbitration over, and was the source
of your proposal that experts be banned from editing articles on their
Global warming nutters are really special.
Carcharoth, David, Fred:
Thanks for the feedback!
I had heard about the Heavy Metal umlaut article, but did not realize
there was such a sophisticated screencast.
I agree that telling the story of controversial articles is important as
well; I would like nothing better than to have a variety of stories,
perhaps in different media, about a variety of different kinds of
articles. (Controversial/tame/highly-trafficked/demoted former FA's/etc.
etc. etc. Also, different articles illustrating the different processes
of various language Wikipedias.)
If we can produce a number of different stories, that will relieve any
pressure of needing to tell "the entire" story in relation to any one
article; and having a menu of options for any given outreach/educational
opportunity will be a great benefit.
I'd like nothing more than to have you all make accounts on
outreach.wikimedia.org and start a page on an article you've worked on,
or whose development you've tracked.
Please let me know if I can help in that process!
p.s. David, thanks especially for sharing the Greasemonkey script.
"Two Chinese writers’ groups claim that Google has scanned Chinese
works into an electronic database in violation of international
copyright standards. The organizations are urging China’s authors to
step forward and defend their rights.
“Google has seriously violated the copyrights of Chinese authors. That
is an undeniable fact,” Chen Qirong, a spokesman for the China
Writers’ Association, said by telephone. The group says it represents
nearly 9,000 writers."
"Under the new settlement, works will only be included in the
ambitious digital project if they have been registered in the US, or
come from the UK, Australia and Canada – countries which have
“contributed the largest number of English-language works to American
libraries,” according to the parties to the settlement. The
similarities in their legal systems and the structure of their
publishing industries made it appropriate for these countries to be
included, according to the backers of the settlement.
The changes will mean that 95 per cent of all foreign works will no
longer be included in Google’s digital book archive, said Richard
Sarnoff, chairman of the Association of American Publishers."
in case anyone has forgotten.)
When introducing non-Wikipedians to the concept of Wikipedia, I've found
many people want to know: *how does an article develop?*
I just composed an overview of the development of a GA article I worked
on with several others over several years:
And also, started a page on the Outreach wiki to link to such stories. I
linked to several time lapse YouTube videos I've seen that do more or
less the same.
Does anybody else have an article they'd like to explore in this way? Or
feedback on the Celilo Falls overview?
Public Outreach Officer
+1 415-839-6885 x636 (office)
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Last week's Question of the week focused on how Wikimedia could change
its technology to enable a friendlier and more welcoming environment.
Certainly new technology and increasing the friendliness is one tactic
that Wikipedia might use to increase participation. The following
graph shows that there are some key countries with a large online
populations where Wikipedia still has significant room to increase the
number of users and active participants. Specifically, in China,
Brazil, France, South Korea, Turkey and Indonesia, Wikipedia.org
ranking is below 10. What tactics do you think could be used to
increase participation in a specific country?
<Graph and link to participate are at http://strategy.wikimedia.org/wiki/Question_of_the_week
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