[Commons-l] Making Wikimedia Commons less frightening

Platonides Platonides at gmail.com
Sat Dec 6 17:20:42 UTC 2008

Lars Aronsson wrote:
> I'm a man, I'm a C/UNIX programmer since 1986, I speak English, 
> I've been on Wikipedia since May 2001, I have 4,000 edits on the 
> English Wikipedia, 27,000 on the Swedish Wikipedia, and 1,500 on 
> Wikimedia Commons; in 2005 I introduced page scanning on 
> Wikisource.  I don't claim to be better than you, I'm just saying 
> that I'm not a complete newcomer. And yet, my user talk page on 
> Commons is full of deletion requests.  I occasionally contribute a 
> lot to Commons, but in between I might be away for a few months, 
> often long enough for deletions to go through.

Remember that there is a send notification of changes on your talk by
email. It will be disabled if it's an old account. For new accounts, it
should be automatically enabled if it isn't already.

> The idea that I might be a stable, long time contributor, well 
> versed in copyright law and GNU and CC licences, fully able to 
> take legal responsibility for what I have uploaded, hasn't 
> occurred to the people posting these deletion requests.  Instead, 
> images are deleted 7 days after the warning is posted.  This is 
> completely equal and democratic, in the worst sense: Loyal 
> veterans get the same treatment as anonymous drive-by vandals.
> Sometimes the deletion requests are anonymous.  Sometimes the 
> conclusion is that the request was invalid because the image was 
> perfectly legitimate. But I don't see the requestor being punished 
> for this. In the last year or two, the community culture on 
> Commons has made this kind of drive-by-deletion-request something 
> normal.  When I pointed out to another user that she needed to 
> explain why some images should be deleted, *I* was told to behave.
> http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User_talk:LA2

Seems both Cecil and you thought the other could be a troll...
We're too used to get trolls here :(


> If a user only contributes to the Swedish Wikipedia and has the 
> Swedish language user interface setting on Wikimedia Commons, then 
> why should their user talk page receive image deletion requests in 
> English?  
I try to send the template in the proper language, when I guess which
one it is. But given a contributor many times I can't tell which is his
mother tongue, defaulting to English messages.

> Some of these template messages have links to 
> translations in other languages, but that is an awkward solution. 
> Will the requestor be able to read the user's answer in Swedish? 

> Shouldn't it be possible to assign Swedish speaking admins to 
> patroll contributions by Swedish speaking newcomers?  That's how 
> it would work if all images were uploaded directly to the Swedish 
> Wikipedia.  

The problem is to know which ones are to be answered in Swedish, English
or Portuguese. Newcomers usually don't know how to add babel templates
(or that they should place one).

Plus, if I see a blatant copyrright violation, I shouldn't have to
refrain from deleting it just because it "pertains to another admin".

> And the reason we moved images to Commons is not 
> because we wanted to confront our newcomers with English messages 
> or admins who fail to speak Swedish.

If they want to talk with an admin, they should contat with a
Swedish-speaking admin. Maybe the admin list by language is hard to find?

> Maybe we should turn the system around, so our Swedish newcomers 
> can upload images to the Swedish Wikipedia, where they are 
> patrolled by Swedish speaking admins. Then, the patrolled images 
> can be automatically forwarded to Commons, instead of the other 
> way around. Even though this would require software development, 
> this seems a lot easier than trying to manage the admin community 
> on Commons.
That's an interesting proposal.

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