[WikiEN-l] Parker Peters's comments

MacGyverMagic/Mgm macgyvermagic at gmail.com
Fri Oct 6 10:47:01 UTC 2006

Some adminship requests get opposed because the user aren't familiar in a
specific field of administrator work. If we could specifically give people
the tools they have the knowledge for, more requests would succeed. Perhaps
it's time to run that plan to give people separate admin tools.


On 10/6/06, daniwo59 at aol.com <daniwo59 at aol.com> wrote:
> Originally, I planned to answer Parker Peters's email. I wanted to say
> something, at least, but I didn't want it to be trite. I didn't want to
> defend
> some admin actions while agreeing with him about others. There will be
> (have
> been?) plenty of people to do that. In the end, all of that is irrelevant,
> because it is his perception of the problem that really matters, not
> whether the
> problem is truly relevant in particular instance X or Z. It is a
> macro-issue,
> and it deserves macro-answers, or alternately, macro-changing in
> our  thinking.
> I think the real issue can be boiled down to a single statement:
> "Wikipedia
> is big ... really, really big." As of yesterday, Alexa ranks us the number
> 12
> website in the world, and we are still climbing. In English alone, we have
> close  to 1.5 million articles and 6 million total pages. We have over 2.4
> million users and close to 600 thousand images. I don't know how  many
> edits we
> are getting per day, per hour, per second, but I can  only assume that it
> is a
> very substantial number.
> No single person, or even small group of people, can tend to something
> this
> big, or even familiarize themselves with all its nooks and crannies. Yet
> we
> have  to. That is the challenge.
> There are 1,015 people with admin powers, and for various reasons it is
> assumed that the burden of responsibility lies with them (it really
> doesn't,
> since it should rest on the entire community, but that is a different
> story). Of
> these thousand or so people, some are more active than others. Some can be
> found  patrolling the projects every hour of every day, while others pop
> in for a
> few  minutes every few months, and still others are gone for good.
> As such, the burden is overwhelming. There is so much to do, so much that
> needs tending, but we've grown faster than our admnistrative structure,
> and the
> fissures are beginning to show. By piling on the load, it is only natural
> that  admins (and here I mean people who perform admin tasks, whether they
> are
> admins  or not) begin to feel frustrated and burn out. It is especially
> onerous
> when  every action is going to be viewed by people who will challenge
> it--and
> the  admin--any way they can. Do you risk making all the rapid decisions
> that
> need to  be made, one after the other, even if it means that some bad
> decisions will  inevitably be made? Do you risk maintaining old
> procedures, which once
> worked  quite well but are starting to buckle under the weight, or do you
> experiment  with something new and untested? If there is to be change,
> what are
> the  priorities? If there is to be discussion about change, at what point
> do we
> end  the talking and decide to act?
> These are some of the real issues that Parker Peters is raising. Note that
> they are dilemmas, and the nature of a dilemma is that there is no right
> answer,  except perhaps from the safety of hindsight. And yet, decisions
> have to be
> made.
> Danny
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