From: "Ray Saintonge" <saintonge(a)telus.net>
Jimmy Wales wrote:
I'm with you 100% on the openness thing, and
probably with you on the
hierarchy thing, too. And don't even get me started on dmoz's broken
The Cunctator wrote:
>Claims that mediation and arbitration can't work without secrecy are
>Or to be more positive: any structure set up which involves a level of
>secrecy, if we are to move past the benevolent dictator model, MUST have
>formal methods of ensuring accountability and oversight by the general
>community--that is, everyone, including non-Wikipedians.
Arbitration should be a completely open process, where everybody knows
all that is happening. This may be different for mediation where the
objective is to have the warring parties come to some agreement.
I agree with this statement in the context of Wikipedia. Since we are all
involved in the collective maintenance of Wikipedia the arbitration
is something that we are all part of and we should be able at least to watch
as spectators as it progresses.
Mediation is fundamentally different in objective. It is true that sometimes
mediators and arbitrators are the same individuals (such as judges who try
to settle cases before they go to trial) but the format of mediation is
the parties try to see each other's perspectives and then resolve their
differences amicably. That can be done quietly between those involved,
of course what is being mediated are disputes with the Wikipedia community,
so someone must represent Wikipedia's interests in the mediation and this
is why, imo, it gets complicated to manage as a process. Who decides who
represents Wikipedia. Is it the mediator or is it some third party who knows
what the complaints are for the community against the individual? I still
see that any general consensus has been reached on that point.
The last thing that the mediator needs when he is
trying to resolve a
delicate question is to have a hamhanded newcomer to the war throwing
flames when the matter is none of his business. That can drive away one
combatant, and harden the other in his position.
Here I would say that this is suggesting that the mediator should not be the
person or body representing Wikipedia's interests directly (of course the
mediator is trying to help Wikipedia's interests by dealing with a problem
user, but the role is to listen to the problem user and the complaints, not
to side with those making complaints).
Another point is that mediation can sometimes occur without the intervention
of a mediator per se. In court yesterday I was the mediator between
my client ( a corporation) and the other side. True, I am not completely
impartial, but I am trying to resolve the issues between the two sides,
and convince both my client to settle and the other side (who was not
represented) to settle by getting them both to see the limitations of their
respective claims. It happens in the hallways of the courhouse without
anyone listening and with no record but it one of the most important
things I do in the resolution of disputes because it produces results on
many occasions sort of like the idea of a [[User:User Advocate]].
Alex from Brooklyn [en:user:alex756]