[Foundation-l] Language subcommittee vs Montenegrin language - show time

Jesse Martin (Pathoschild) pathoschild at gmail.com
Fri Apr 13 21:00:46 UTC 2007

[This message is not an official statement by the subcommittee, and
nor are GerardM's messages.]


The decision was accompanied by a three-paragraph explanation, and
later explained again differently when a user challenged the decision.
It is difficult to assume good faith when users comment without even
glancing at the issue at hand. As such, I will paste the explanations
below, taken from the request page at

Explanation for decision:
"This request has been rejected for the same reasons as the November
2006 request; the discussion below has not provided new information
that would change this decision.

"Wikis should not be split along political lines, and we encourage
Montenegrin editors to collaborate with Serbian or Serbo-Croatian
editors in a single wiki or, at the very least, to have Montenegrin
pages alongside the others. If political divisions make this
difficult, please note that the Wikimedia Foundation's goal is giving
every single person free, unbiased access to the sum of all human
knowledge, and not to contribute to political development or to
provide information from individual political communities.

"Although other Serbo-Croatian languages have their own wikis, these
were created before the existence of the language subcommittee and it
is likely that no new projects will be created in these languages."

Further arguments were later provided in discussion:
I'm sorry that you disagree with the decision. You state that "their
articles regarding Montenegrin issues are so one-sided and filled with
propaganda", and that is precisely the problem the closing comment
mentions. If a Montenegrin Wikipedia is created, articles about
Montenegro on the Serbo-Croatian Wikipedia will continue to be biased.
Similarly, articles about Serbia or other issues about which
Montenegrin editors have strong opinions will be biased without the
input of other Serbo-Croatian editors.

This is the problem of 'providing information from individual
political communities', as stated in the closing comment. On the other
hand, collaborating in a linguistically unified Wikipedia, the
opinions of all editors balance out so that articles are much more
balanced and neutral."

The language subcommittee exists to promote flourishing wiki
communities and prevent mistakes made in the past. We are obviously
not to blame for the separation of the Serbo-Croatian wiki years ago,
which predates the subcommittee, as Mark suggests. Fortunately, Mark
later agrees with our position: "I, for one, do not think that would
have been a bad decision. I do think it would've slowed down growth,
but it would've helped NPOV and duplication of work."

Therefore, the subcommittee will *not* allow new projects that are
likely to be politically biased or duplicative simply because they
were previously approved by politically-charged, sockpuppet-filled
votes *before* the subcommittee.

Yours cordially,
Jesse Martin (Pathoschild)

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