[Wikipedia-l] Re: Sanger's memoirs

Delirium delirium at hackish.org
Wed Apr 20 17:16:40 UTC 2005

lmsanger at sbcglobal.net wrote:

>And why, again, Jimmy, did you take four years to mention this, if it's
>worth mentioning at all?  Why did you never tell me, or Wikipedians, before?
>Why is it worth mentioning just now?
Since you may not be familiar with general practice here, I should point 
out that this sort of credit-assignment isn't what we spend most of our 
time doing.  In fact, until you came out of nowhere years after the fact 
talking about your seminal role in Wikipedia, I don't recall a single 
discussion taking place on this mailing list about who should get credit 
in "founding" Wikipedia.  Frankly, we have more important things to 
worry about (such as actually creating an encyclopedia).

For what it's worth, my view on it is that who gets the credit is pretty 
meaningless.  As can be seen by the fact that many people suggested it, 
the idea of a wiki-based encyclopedia by the time Wikipedia was started 
was becoming fairly obvious, so eventually someone had to start it.  If 
you were the first one to actually bite the bullet and do so, great, but 
I don't particularly care.

Look, you have not been a part of the Wikipedia community since early 
2002, and now you reappear three years later talking about your 
importance in the "founding" of Wikipedia, pimping a book, and writing 
screeds about what's wrong with it while at the same time not actually 
participating in any of the policy discussions, and indeed explicitly 
saying you "don't have time" to actually discuss any of the issues [1].  
Even your brief reappearance here is apparently entirely to defend your 
claimed credit, not to actually discuss how to improve Wikipedia, an 
endeavor in which you claim to be interested.

If your view is that you're some sort of god-king who can write screeds 
that then get implemented without dirtying your hands with the business 
of discussing the best course of action with us common folk, then I 
think you're mistaken.  If you're just trying to pump up sales for your 
book or get some sort of a tenure-track position, well, carry on.


[1] http://www.kuro5hin.org/comments/2004/12/30/142458/25/194#194 -- "I 
don't have time to reply to the many comments on this forum."

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