[WikiEN-l] Inside the iconophobic mind - a survey proposal.

Todd Allen toddmallen at gmail.com
Sun Feb 24 10:22:18 UTC 2008

On Sat, Feb 23, 2008 at 9:16 AM, Mathias Schindler
<mathias.schindler at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi,
>  the english language OTRS queue does receive about 20-40 emails per
>  day, with a large share of emails coming from a "template" draft,
>  demanding  the removal of images showing the person which is
>  considered to be a prophet by some.
>  Since the large share of the emails consists of sentences which are
>  not from the actual person which is writing to us, it is not possible
>  to count this as a correct represenation of the individual intentions
>  of those people.
>  My suggestion would be to collect the email addresses from the OTRS
>  info-en:Muhammad sub-queue (and maybe from the general info-en queue
>  dealing with that topic) and send out a survey with a few questions
>  about their intentions. Each email to the people in that list should
>  contain an URL to a web based survey with a unique ID to prevent
>  multiple participation. Input on the wording and the methodology is
>  highly appreciated. Please note that some questions are overlapping.
>  I do not expect to get represenative figures from such a survey but
>  only a number of insights on the opinions of this very special group
>  of people who chose to send along emails to WMF, complaining about the
>  image. It will also cover the people who emailed us in support of
>  keeping the images, who could also answer the questions from their
>  respective point of view.
>  1. Topic-related:
>  Please state on a scale from 0 to 10 (10 being the strongest), whether
>  the following statements apply to you or whether you consider these
>  statements to be correct:
>  a) Knowing that a web site displays a copy of an medieval  drawing
>  depicting the islamic prophet Muhammad does emotionally hurt me in my
>  everyday life: 0-10
>  b) Knowing that a web site displays a copy of an medieval drawing
>  depicting the islamic prophet Muhammad does hurt my religious
>  feelings: 0 - 10
>  c) Contemporary islamic interpretation of iconophobia should always
>  apply to any web site, regardless of their country of origin or their
>  religous affiliation: 0 - 10
>  d) Threatening physical violence to people displaying medieval
>  drawings to force them to remove those images is justified: 0 - 10
>  e) It would be sufficient to provide a personal feature which allows
>  me to turn showing the images off (just for me). Others would still
>  see them as default: 0 - 10
>  f) It would be sufficient to move those images to a special article
>  called [[Depictions of Muhammed]]: 0 - 10
>  g) Wikipedia should be allowed to decide the question of proper
>  illustration of articles on their own: 0 - 10
>  h) Wikipedia should not only remove drawings of an unveiled Muhammad
>  but also any other image showing him: 0 - 10
>  i) Wikipedia should not only remove drawings of Muhammad but also any
>  other image showing people: 0 - 10
>  j) If Wikipedia keeps those images online, it will cause disturbances
>  among Muslims: 0 - 10
>  k) Wikipedia has an obligation to maintain articles to Islam-related
>  topics in a factual and neutral way: 0 - 10
>  2. Personal information (optional)
>  Please state the following information about yourself, if you want:
>  a) age
>  b) gender
>  c) country of origin
>  d) religious affiliation
>  _______________________________________________
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You forgot:

j) I can read and comprehend the following statement: "WIKIPEDIA

Why are we even having this discussion? Frank articles on sexual
practices would offend many religions and their adherents, let alone
illustrations. Description of many religions as anything but the One
True Way may very well offend that religion. There are innumerable
things we do which may offend some religion or another. We don't
remove or change things for that reason. Maybe we should change
"Wikipedia is not censored" to "Wikipedia is not censored, not even if
you yowl really, really, really loud." How about, instead of surveys,
we just say "Sorry it offends you, but our mission is to educate, not
to avoid offense to you, and it's not getting changed"?

Freedom is the right to say that 2+2=4. From this all else follows.

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