[WikiEN-l] Fred Bauder"clarifies"on attack site link policy

Fred Bauder fredbaud at waterwiki.info
Sun Jul 1 14:50:20 UTC 2007

There was a hearing regarding the specific site and a determination was made to outlaw it. I think it is probably best to limit such a drastic remedy to sites which, after a hearing, have been determined to be destructive to Wikipedia.


>-----Original Message-----
>From: Daniel R. Tobias [mailto:dan at tobias.name]
>Sent: Sunday, July 1, 2007 07:40 AM
>To: wikien-l at lists.wikimedia.org
>Subject: [WikiEN-l] Fred Bauder "clarifies" on attack site link policy
>Recently, [[User:Kamryn Matika]] asked on the RfA page for 
>clarification regarding the ban on linking to attack sites imposed in 
>the MONGO arbitration; the specific situation she was involved in was 
>the insertion of a link to source the [[Essjay controversy]] article. 
>Fred Bauder has now responded:
>-- begin response --
>Arbitration rulings are not policy. They apply only to the specific 
>situation considered, in this case, a link to dem attic. Inserting 
>such a link into Wikipedia is a blockable offense, although, a 
>warning is appropriate if it seems the user was unaware of the status 
>of that site. In your case, the 24 hour block seems appropriate as 
>you were apparently both aware and warned. Fred Bauder 21:31, 30 June 
>2007 (UTC)
>Attempts to generalize the remedy in that case into more general 
>policy have not been happy. I don't think it is good general policy. 
>Such a remedy should only be applied in egregious circumstances, 
>after a hearing which considers the particular site. Fred Bauder 
>21:31, 30 June 2007 (UTC)
>-- end response --
>Unfortunately, this response is full of contradictions. Bauder is 
>claiming that the ruling in question is "not policy", that it applies 
>only to a "specific situation", and shouldn't be "generalized" and is 
>not "good general policy"; furthermore, it should be applied only in 
>"egregious circumstances" to particular sites that have been 
>considered in a hearing. However, he is also saying that it's proper 
>to block Kamryn because she was "warned"... regardless of the facts 
>1) the link she inserted was not to a site that has been the subject 
>of a specific hearing
>2) the link was arguably a relevant and proper reference for the 
>article in which it was being inserted, and not an "egregious 
>3) a "warning" that is not backed by valid policy is not a valid 
>basis for a block, or else anybody could "warn" anybody about 
>anything based on their own pet peeves, and expect it to be enforced. 
>Can I just order people not to use the letter "w" any more, if I 
>don't like it?
>4) "Enforcing" this non-policy on relevant links to source an article 
>seem to be precisely the sort of thing that's an 'attempt to 
>generalize' the ruling in ways that are not 'good general policy'.
>Furthermore, Bauder followed up his response by editing Kamryn's 
>original posting to remove the link to the particular instance she 
>was discussing. This link was to a Wikipedia diff, not directly to a 
>so-called "attack site", and was necessary for readers to understand 
>exactly what is being discussed. In doing so, he also reworded 
>Kamryn's comments, putting in a reference to "the outlawed site" that 
>wasn't there before (and doesn't make sense, since the original link 
>wasn't actually to the specific site that was "outlawed" in the 
>original ruling). Of course, with the link to the diff removed, it's 
>hard for anybody to actually check on this, and see that the link was 
>to a different site than the one covered specifically in the ArbCom 
>ruling, and what context the link was made in.
>Incidentally, today's New York Times Magazine article on Wikipedia 
>includes a specific mention of Encyclopedia Dramatica and its attacks 
>on Slim Virgin. I guess if anything that even refers to an attack 
>site is itself an attack site, then The New York Times is now an 
>attack site.
>== Dan ==
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