[Wikipedia-l] Re: Inflammatory rhetoric (Ark)

Michael R. Irwin mri_icboise at surfbest.net
Thu Aug 15 04:14:46 UTC 2002

Stephen Gilbert wrote:
> --- "Michael R. Irwin" <mri_icboise at surfbest.net>
> wrote:
> > Perhaps.  I think it is morely likely Ark has
> > experienced how hurtful
> > such attitudes can be and feels turnabout is fair
> > play.   How can we,
> > the Wikipedia community, ask he/she to forgive and
> > forget past
> > transgressions
> > and focus on the friendly assertive dialogue so
> > necessary to building a
> > correct
> > consensus view regarding article content and
> > phrasing; if we are
> > incapable of ignoring current trangressions or
> > heated hurtful rhetoric?
> I'm afraid you'll have to give some examples of where
> the person in question has been provoked and/or
> verbally abused before anyone takes those suggestions
> seriously.
> Stephen G.

How unfortunate.  I do not intend to scour an
everchanging medium for examples of past transgressions.
Particularly since people often perceive things differently
and I might not recognize something that appeared provocative
or abusive to Ark anyway.  If I did find something that
appeared so to me, it is very possible that it would be
merely dismissed as vaporous by the original provocateur
anyway.   I have participated in professional seminars where
pychologists and communications specialists demonstrated to
the class through lab exercises that most people perceive
themselves differently than others do.

I have been impressed by the quality of overall participation
here at Wikipedia and doubt that most Wikipedians would 
intentionally give offense over trivia.  Of course, most
regulars do not consider editing content trivial.  We also have
many random dropins from newcomers who are not always easily
distinguishable from regulars.  Also, mistakes will happen
occasionally even with the best of intentions and feathers
will get ruffled.

I suggest we be careful in implementing your suggestion
of mercilessly gang editing Ark's material in question, 
lest Ark see hordes from the mailing list descending upon 
his/her work as "provocation" to further uncivil behavior.

Some participants here on the mailing list have noted that 
Ark has contributed productively, if a bit abrasively, in the
past.  They might take it a bit personally should Ark use 
the opportunity provided to get banned.

It might also lead them to suspect our processes can be
improved a bit.  24's banning certainly raised my
suspicions in that direction quite a bit.

I volunteer to try to help Ark find some substantiating data,
opinion, suspicions, etc. for the controversial material
while also attempting to discredit Ms. Hoffman's and others
sources and materials .... not note, Ms. Hoffman.

Fun stuff!  It is not often one acquires an opportunity
to attack academia's material in one last desperate attempt
to help truth triumph over the weight of historical 
neglect, outright revision or wishful thinking.

Mike Irwin, aka mirwin

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