[WikiEN-l] We need to recognize that advocating is a basic right

Molu loom91 at yahoo.com
Fri May 5 06:53:44 UTC 2006

I wouldn't use the word right for apparently some people do not like talking about rights on a privately owned website, but I agree with your words. And it is not simply a matter of voting. When a person thinks of something that he thinks will be beneficial to the project, he SHOULD gather others who are likely to be interested to marshall his cause. This helps rather than disrupts the consensus building process and is totally helpful to the ultimate goal of building an encyclopedia. Incidentally, there was an inconclusive debate about this issue at AN/I and my talk page not long ago, the admins may remember it.

  >>Message: 7
Date: Thu, 4 May 2006 08:57:15 -0700
From: "John Tex" 
Subject: [WikiEN-l] We need to recognize that advocating is a basic
To: wikien-l at Wikipedia.org

Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed

We need to recognize that each user has a right to try to influence policy
in ways that they believe are beneficial to the project. Two basic tenets
of this are discussing the ideas and building up groups of people who agree
with you and who will help you bring about the beneficial change.

This is "advocacy". Contacting people to recruit them to support you or to
act according to beliefs you think they may already have should rightly be
called "campaigning". This is a Good Thing.

Let's stop insulting people by calling them "meat puppets" or "vote
stackers". Let's stop confusing the issue by calling it "spamming". It is
not spamming. Spamming is indiscriminately notifying people that are
probably not interested in the hopes that a few people will be. This is
practically the opposite.

Attempting to stifle advocacy is harmful to the consensus building process
and it is harmful to the project. If we try to prohibit it, it will just be
taken off-wiki, which would be a huge shame.
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