On 5/31/07, Mark Gallagher <m.g.gallagher(a)student.canberra.edu.au> wrote:
You read that, and assumed you'd scored a king-hit
on SlimVirgin. The
problem there is not that you need to apologise to Sarah (though you
do); it's that ... *you read that and assumed you'd scored a king-hit on
Well, you seem to have concluded that you have scored a "king-hit" on
me. But (as seems to be the routine irony) you have committed the same
sin that I did: you've jumped to a conclusion based on your
preconceptions. If you had followed the thread on WR about the
incident, you would have seen that the WR-ites didn't think that SV
wrote the smoking gun passage.
Which leads us to the three backstories here. One is the paranoia.
"Assume Good Faith" is a dead letter in this controversy, paid lip
service only when suspicions are voiced against oneself. It's
particularly noticeable in the constant claims that so-and-so relative
newbie "knows too much not to be a socpuppet." I've gone back and
looked at DennyColt's first edits, and at mine. They aren't that
radically different. This business of looking at edit patterns is
simply too much of a witch hunt, and rather too much like thorwing
them in the river to see if they float.
The second is that it is obviously OK to make personal attacks on
people who aren't editors, and therefore seems to have become OK to
attack editors who show any sympathy for those attacked. That's in
line with the recent line in BLP that Wikipedia has no moral
obligation to the subjects of its biographies, but it's repugnant and
The third is the big one: the politics. Many, many people look upon
Wikipedia as an object example of "The Tyranny of Structurelessness"
(or "Lord of the Flies", if you prefer the monosyllabic version), and
in my opinion, they're right. I started by editing in some very
controversial topics, and I gave it up. There's too much ownership by
interest groups and partisans, and it's like to trying to shingle a
roof in a hurricane to make anything but trivial copyedits stick.
These days I'm wont to presume that anyone who persists in those
topics over the long term has either an agenda or a personality
defect, but that is just my own extremely hardened and cynical bias.
Anyway, there are obvious factions in this dispute, but it seems to me
that I'm more in the cat-herd of Dan Tobias, Ken Arromdee,
Badlydrawnjeff, et al.
Jayjg's "rape victim" line was posturing. Nobody is being raped, and
the only stalking I have seen evidence of in the present is the mass
banning of a long list of accused sockpuppets. These days, I hardly
trust anyone in this, except for some of the other members of the
cat-herd-- and at that, the reason I trust them is that they seem
incapable of making alliances or otherwise competently participating
in politics. (Sorry guys, but that's how I see it.) What's
particularly ironic is that of late I've found myself in common cause
with SlimVirgin on several issues (e.g. the rolling of single incident
BLPs into the incident article, which I think is an excellent policy).
Nor would I argue for a mass amnesty for the WR-ites-- heck, there's a
couple I wish the WR admins would ban from their own site. The thing
is, the political need to assign me to a faction has overwhelmed the
facts, just as it occaisionally does for Dan Tobias, who is from time
to time lumped with the WR-ites in utter disregard for his
near-contempt for them.
I don't know who you are, Mr. Gallagher, but if you are really a
student in Canberra, I was participating in on-line discussion about
the time you were *born*. You are hardly the first person to call me