[Foundation-l] A dangerous precedent

Ray Saintonge saintonge at telus.net
Fri Dec 28 08:04:41 UTC 2007

Birgitte SB wrote:
> --- Daniel Arnold <arnomane at gmx.de> wrote:
>> Am Mittwoch, 26. Dezember 2007 22:21:10 schrieb Luiz Augusto:
>>> Soundlessly, some folks are missing what are exactly Wikimedia versus local communities issue
> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Proposals_for_closing_projects/Radical_clean
>>> up_of_Volapük_Wikipedia 
>> Once more:
>> * This is not about deleting vo.wikipedia
>> * This is not about denying the right of a Volapük
>> Wikipedia
>> This is *only* about the way choosen to create the
>> Volapük Wikipedia. This is 
>> about changing this unhealthy way that severely
>> harms all other Wikipedias 
>> (not only wih Interwiki spam to useless bot
>> articles). This is about a bad 
>> habbit of edit cheating others have done prior.
>> Volapük Wikipedia simply went 
>> to far down this road to perdition. No other
>> Wikipedia contains nearly 100% 
>> bot generated content.
> The protest here is that you should have no say in the
> way chosen to create the Volapük Wikipedia.  If
> Volapük Wikipedia is valid community, then they are
> free to create their project by any method that works
> for them.  If it is not a valid community, then the
> WMF should close the project.  This is a bright line.
> There is no basis for outsiders to dictate how a local
> community goes about it's work excepting for
> violations of the foundation principles ("free as in
> freedom", Neutral Point of View, "anyone can edit"). 
> This new kind of micromanagment you have proposed has
> nothing to do with a foundation principle as far as I
> can tell. I personally find your proposal out of line
> and if it succeeds, I agree that it will be "A
> dangerous precedent".  
If the issue is about bot generated articles the principle is still that 
any "person" can edit, not that any "thing" can edit.  Persons can apply 
human judgement; bots can't.  In a small community, when someone 
introduces a bot to massively generate articles it can completely 
overwhelm that community.  If a member of the community objects that the 
bot is slanting those articles with a particular point of view, there is 
nobody with whom the articles can be discussed.  The bot's manager may 
not even be familiar with the detailed contents, so he is in no position 
to defend it.  Even with a sound and uncontroversial deletion policy the 
human editors can't keep up.  It's a bit like a casino insisting that 
any $10,000 jackpot on the nickel slots must be paid out in nickels.


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