Wednesday, 24 December 2008

New leaf

Well it's nearly the end of 2008. It's been a tough year for me, both on and off wiki. Off has seen three deaths in my family, one especially close to me. I had been fortunate to never have experienced the death of a loved one until May 2007 when my friend died suddenly at the age of 16. Along with three family members passing away this year, a lot of work, personal problems, and stress IRL, I let myself go on the wiki, possibly around that time. I said a lot of stupid things. I did a lot of stupid things. I was angry at life, and sometimes took my anger out on people who didn't really deserve it. Things didn't help when my home was burgled recently, and my laptop was taken. I don't wish to excuse my behaviour, but these are simply some likely reasons why I might have changed from a highly respected editor to someone who many consider a troll.

So I shall be turning over a new leaf for 2009. I apologise for all comments and actions I made that were unconstructive, ever. I do not consider myself a "bad person" or a "troll", and I wish to regain the respect I lost from people over the past year. I wish for forgiveness, and put the past behind me.

Friday, 29 August 2008

Majorly RfC

So I created an RfC on myself. Following a rather disasterous RfA that I nominated, it was felt by some people that my actions on, and surrounding that RfA were inappropriate, or in some people's word's "despicable". Now, I offered to nominate Jamie months ago, after noticing her good work on articles on Christian Music. I started to talk to her on IRC, and after much persuasion she accepted a nomination. I regret very much that I did this. If I'd known how vicious the RfA crowd were this week, I'd have kept well away. As it happens, I didn't. Jamie unfortunately had the kind of username that gives away age. It seems the age crowd only like coming out at certain times: just a couple of months ago, another editor passed his third RfA without a big problem. And of course, we all know of Anonymous Dissident, who passed with 165 supports and a single oppose, in 2007. The age crowd must have been on vacation that week. I wonder if they'd have opposed if they had seen it, or knew his real age? I can only guess yes. Looking at some of the age opposes, some of them are well-reasoned, but others are just really awful. Consider oppose #1: "Kid admins have generally poor judgement". This shows that this particular opposer is already biased before they voted. OK, we all have our standards. This editor has made it clear they never support teenagers. But my issue here is not the fact they have their standards, or their opinion. It's the blatant abuse of the process. When voting, you are supposed to review the candidate yourself for a good idea of what they're like. It's rather clear that this editor, and others neglected this important part of the process. It's all very well them saying they did afterwards, but the fact is, they have generalised, and stereotyped this editor without giving them a fair analysis.

So, since my candidate is getting this rather poor treatment, I am naturally angry. I make a few comments, to the point of proposing that people don't actually have to look at contributions anymore, but can oppose for whatever reason they like (it's a vote after all). I start "badgering" a few people. Such people would not need badgering if they gave the candidate a fair review. You don't see me questioning the user who had issues with Jamie's AfD votes do you? That's because it's a completely fair oppose, and shows the user took the time to review her fairly. I'll "badger" votes that do not do this. It's incredibly easy to vote on an RfA. You can vote with "per above", "Not enough experience", "needs more time" etc - all are more acceptable that someone stating "Kid admins generally are immature". The funny thing is, I've not seen one smidgen of evidence proving that statement is true. Judging by some of the voters on the RfA, and the behaviour I've seen of some adult admins, I'd say the opposite is true. Jamie's conduct through the RfA was pretty exceptional. Obviously, hardly anyone noticed this under the dust cloud.

What is now really irritating me, is that some of the opposers are using me as the scapegoat for causing her RfA to go downhill! The only people causing her RfA to go anywhere are the opposers. If they want to make frankly ridiculous votes saying "The nominator's behaviour is less than satisfactory", that's their lookout. I would hope such votes are discounted in the end - even the age ones are better than that. Really, these people are that desperate to oppose someone, that when they find nothing wrong with the candidate, they move to the nominator! Actually I've seen similar - where people oppose per whoever is supporting, and their contributions. It's so unbelievably negative. And to think that if she had simply left the fact she's in school of her userpage, she'd probably be doing so much better now! It really sucks.

And now on to me. An admin by the name of Jennavecia, probably better known as LaraLove has decided I should be desysopped. This is following from nearly 9 months of particularly unpleasant encounters with this woman - I had, for a while been considering to create a requests for comments page on myself - I know I'm controversial, and have done some stupid things. She told me that an RfC was in the works. However I have grown impatient, and wish to get this thing out in the open, so I created it myself. Soon after its creation, Giggy whom I nominated for bureaucrat on Commons, spewed out a load of diffs, dating back to late 2007. There were so many! I went through each and every one. There was, perhaps, fewer than 5 really serious incidents. Each I admitted to and apologised for as necessary. There were a great many where he presented the evidence in a skewed manner, apparently deliberately linking to logs in such a way to make me look worse than I was. There were cases where I did minor things like endorse the block of someone, expressed my feelings about the BAG process and protected a page, which I began discussion on a mere 19 days later. Others were more major, but I don't need to discuss those here. I admitted I was wrong there and then, and no more needs to be said there.

Anyway, a bunch of people have turned up, and if I wasn't all too awake this morning, I could have sworn I most of those people somewhere else - wait, I remember - RfA! Yes, it's every chronic opposer on the block, from Iridescent to Kojidude, to Malleus Fatuorum to Friday! They're all there, and they're all agreeing. I don't know what to think of this. I really don't.

Then Jenna, aka Lara showed up, and proposed I be desysopped. Unlike the other people who made statements or proposals, Lara had nothing pleasant to say about me. This doesn't surprise me. She has told me before that she doesn't like me, and the feeling is mutual. What I don't understand, is why does she dislike me so much? I mean, I don't think Friday and I will ever agree on anything, but at least he had something positive to say, along with a lot of negative. Her description of me sounds like that of a vandal, or banned user. Now, as someone who has been on this site for over 2 years, and dedicated a hell of a lot of time to various aspects of the site, I am pretty offended to be described so harshly. Perhaps it's all true, but still, it's not nice to read. Then again, with my experience of Lara, she does say exactly what she thinks, though on-wiki she's mild compared to off (and where she thinks I can't see).

Anyway, I was given the choice - RfA or ArbCom? It was an easy choice. Just looking at the shithole I threw poor Jamie into, I'd go for ArbCom any day. If they desysop me, so be it. If not, I'll take the points from the RfC into account, and step back from RfA for a while. I actually want to do something else for a bit anyway, so it works out well either way for me.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Stuff that happens on Wikipedia but rarely in real life

Some words and phrases

1. non notable
2. has good judgement
3. I echo the above
4. Per
5. Per above
6. As nominator
7. drama (when referring to arguing)
8. trolling
9. do you have a reference? A reliable one?
10. RFA spam
11. mass welcoming
12. machine editing
13. thought process

There are plenty more, please leave them in the comments. You know you want to.

Stuff you do but would never in real life:

1. Warn a vandal (for smashing up your car)
2. Sign your name with ~~~
3. Click edit to talk
4. Click edit to do anything
5. Rollback any mistakes you make
6. Ban people you don't like from your house/land/office/school/workplace
7. Punish vandals by blocking them for 24 hours (block being down in a police cell)
8. Ensure that when you're writing, Section Headers Do Not Have Capital Letters
9. Make italics with two apostrophies (and bold with three)
10. Always write vote with a pointless exclamation mark before it. It really makes all the difference.

Can you think of anymore?

Friday, 23 May 2008

Commons is not mellow

Some people say they love Commons. I have slowly started to hate it. I have found the community to be unfriendly and hostile. Most of my activity there recently is voting on RfAs, where the ridiculous strictness from enwiki has been gradually seeping through. There was a recent poll where the community were essentially planning to ban any new editor from voting on RfAs because they didn't have the necessary edit count. How friendly and welcoming from this supposedly "mellow" community. As well as this, some were trying to prevent people running because they didn't have 500 edits - editcountitis, editcountitis, editcountitis. There's so much more to experience than edits. Not according to Herbythyme, whose joke of an RfB is passing as a popularity contest. Those supporting cannot have looked at the way he hypocritically opposes people who had more experience than he did, people who have more experience than some of his candidates, and of course his friends. It's just really unfair. Frequent opposes on RfA for such poor reasoning makes me ill frankly. It is people like Herbythyme and Marcus Cyron (another frequent opposer, whose opposes are normally in all caps and with several exclamation marks) who put me off editing Commons more, and probably put off good potential admins with their "must... oppose... not got x edits..." attitude. They seriously need to chill out a bit on these requests, lighten up a little and remember it's just a website. And it is not a big deal, especially if the editor is an admin on another project. You can go and promote the "mellow" essay all you like - Commons' most regular editors are the least mellow people I've ever encountered.

Board election candidates

So the submission time for candidates for the Board is up. I thought I'd give my opinions on the candidates running. I'm aware the voting system isn't a support/oppose one, but I've put whether I'd support or not to give some idea of how I'd vote:

Ad Huikeshoven (Dedalus) - who? I haven't heard of this guy, though he apparently is part of the Audit Committee. His credentials seem good, and he has good experience on the project. Depending on answers, I'd probably support.

Alex Bakharev - I only recognise the name from English Wikipedia. While his statement isn't bad, I don't think it's particularly good either. It seems to be concentrated solely on English Wikipedia - while it is by far our biggest project, it is not the only one and I think that point is missed somewhere. Unless the answers are substantially better, I'd have to say no.

Craig Spurrier (Cspurrier) - someone I recognise. He has a lot of jobs on the projects - particularly on Wikinews, as an ArbCom member, bureaucrat and checkuser. I wonder if he'll find the time for this. He was recently desysopped on Meta for lack of activity. I agree Wikipedia is considered by many as "the only" or "most important" project, and the others can be overlooked. I also agree the foundation has issues with PR. I would hope that should he be elected, he'd ensure to make board work a priority over anything like Wikinews arbcom. Depending on answers, I'd probably support.

Dan Rosenthal (Swatjester) - another I know. He has good experience and I like his statement - a lot. There are some recent issues though, on English Wikipedia that I'd like to see addressed though. If these aren't brought up in questions, I probably will bring them up. If the answers are good, I'll definitely support.

Gregory Kohs (Thekohser) - a pretty controversial candidate really. I believe his intentions are good, but again, I feel his issues are with English Wikipedia and not the project as a whole. I agree that the foundation has seen some pretty embarrassing events recently, but it's improving all the time, and a lot of the stuff is exaggerated and fabricated in any case. Unless he answers the questions really well, I'd have to say no.

Harel Cain (Harel) - who? He's a bureaucrat/checkuser on Hebrew Wikipedia, and that seems to be about it. Apart from helping found the Israel chapter, I see a lack in activity anywhere else. His statement is good however, I'm agreeing with most of his points. Depending on answers, I'd probably support.

Jussi-Ville Heiskanen (Cimon Avaro) - I know him from *cough* IRC mostly. His statement is pretty much based on the technical side of things - not really what I'm looking for I'm afraid. Unless answers are better, I'll have to say no.

Kurt M. Weber (Kmweber) - just no. Need I say more?

Matthew Bisanz (MBisanz) - know from English Wikipedia/IRC (again). He doesn't have the right experience for me, I don't think. Again, a concentration on English Wikipedia, and not much in the way of what he'll actually do. Unless answers are better, I'll have to say no.

Paul Williams (Skenmy) - know from IRC. Though he's mostly active on Wikinews, there's that English Wikipedia feeling again here. However, he does refer to the "sister projects" which is something. I also agree with the other comments in his statement. I'll also note he's the youngest candidate (younger than myself, so pretty young), but having spoken to him I'm confident he'll do a good job. Depending on the answers, I'll probably support.

Ray Saintonge (Eclecticology) - most familiar with his posts on Foundation-l. He has a wealth of experience and is clearly dedicated and familiar with many aspects of the foundation. His statement is good as well. Depending on answers, I'll probably support.

Ryan Postlethwaite - probably most familiar with this candidate, and the only one I've ever met in person. His statement is sadly a little rushed, however it's a good one, and I agree with the points he makes. He has good experience in a lot of areas, though perhaps a little limited to English Wikipedia. Despite this, depending on answers I'll probably support.

Samuel Klein (Sj) - seen around, mostly on Meta. He's very experienced - editor for four years, having various jobs such as steward and organiser of Wikimania 2006. His statement reads well too. Depending on answers, I'll probably support.

Steve Smith (Sarcasticidealist) - not too familiar with him. He's also fairly new, having only joined in February 2007. He appears to have a lot of real world experience. He's starting law school in September - I wonder if that will affect his time that he can concentrate on the board. I agree with all of his points except #4. He has already answered one of the questions, and I am unsatisfied with his answer, where he agrees with the board appointing people instead of the community. I'd probably say no based just on that, but we'll see.

Ting Chen (Wing) - unfamiliar with him. He's an admin and bureaucrat on zh.wp, but I'm not sure his experience is enough. His statement isn't really bad, but it's not that good either and doesn't stand out. Unless his answers are good, I'll probably have to say no.

Thursday, 1 May 2008


Apologies for the unoriginal title... not much to say, except I am giving my admin account a break, and am using Al tally (my IRC nick) for editing at the moment. Writing stuff is a lot more relaxing than arguing about the wording on the RfA template, or watching people cause drama with people like Kurt Weber, who opposes every self-nom RfA. Otherwise, I'm still engaged on Simple English Wikipedia and Meta (with the occasional Commons edit). I've also become surprisingly active on Wikipedia Review, what with the Newyorkbrad business. I'm wondering if I really want to know who will replace him - obviously, no one can fill such a gaping hole (no, I'm not referring to size here) as adequately. Rebecca would normally be the next choice, but since she's on the Ombudsman commission, I doubt she will be able to. Next in line is Raul654. But knowing Jimbo, it could be anyone - and likely to be a highly unsuitable untrustworthy person as well.

Wednesday, 16 April 2008

RfA ideology

One of the many, many reasons RfA sucks is the ideology many people have. These are editors who, instead of coming to the request to look for reasons to support, will look for reasons to oppose. This is the complete wrong way to go about things. When RfA was created, it was not so much as a poll, more of an "OK then", perhaps like rollback. If people had an objection, it was done in reluctance, and normally with a good reason (not "he forgot to sign his self nomination acceptance" or "doesn't have enough edits to WP:AIV", but more like "he's only been here a week, maybe after a month's experience"). Some people actually set out to find a reason to oppose. I find this crazy. Why the negativity? Is it some sort of power thing, where it makes people feel better by opposing someone? I can't think why people seem to feel it necessary to look for reasons to oppose someone, instead of support. This is why supports tend to be more "votey" than opposes. Supports should be automatic, and the editor should be promoted bar any significant objection. Those who mass oppose who complain when someone questions their oppose, will sometimes say "Why don't you question the supports without a rationale?" The answer is, it should be up to the opposers to show a proper argument, and not the supporters. Adminship should be given unless there's a significant opposition, and it should be up to the opposers to prove that the user is unsuitable.

Sunday, 13 April 2008


I attended a meetup in London today. It's my fourth one altogether, and I enjoyed it a lot. It's great to talk to people you see online in real life, and have a proper chat. I think that if there is a meetup being organised near you, make an effort to go to it. They really are good fun, and I'd highly recommend it.

I've only met UK Wikipedians so far though, so hopefully my scholarship application for Wikimania will be accepted, and I'll be able to meet a wider range of people.

Tuesday, 8 April 2008

Bot Approvals Group

Something that really irritates me is the Bot Approvals Group (or BAG). The job of the BAG is to basically, as the name states, approve (or not approve) bots. I don't know if this is still the case, but the BAG are a self-appointed little group who basically control which bots do and don't get to do stuff on Wikipedia. At one point, there were "mini-RfAs" that allowed people to join this little group. Following an MfD, they promised reform (much like Esperanza lol) and made the process more open - anyone can simply add themselves to the list. But it appears they've reverted back to the old "vote for me" way. I think bots that do get approved need some sort of technical knowledge in some ways, but I think bots and the approval process are one of the most overlooked features on Wikipedia. Why would that be? Well, most bots go unnoticed (with perhaps the exception of vandalbots and archivebots). We just take all their hard work for granted (well, the coder's hard work, but you know what I mean). The approvals take part on this page. You may notice the lack of voting and the very few editors participating in the discussion. Indeed, the page cries out "Please remember that all editors are encouraged to participate in the requests listed below. Just chip in - your comments are appreciated more than you may think!" Right, unless you have a BAG badge, and then your comments aren't considered
nearly as important. Consider the stark contrast to RfA - people are literally falling over one another to vote on as many RfAs as possible. Why is this? Is the bot page not advertised, or well known? Could it be that people are scared to comment on bots, because bots are "scary and evil" and if you let a bad one slip through it could destroy the wiki? On Commons, the bots are done on the same page as the RfAs. This makes sense to me - it's a bureaucrat's job either way, and having them in one place seems pretty sensible. Maybe to keep the page's loading time low, the transclusions could be turned to links? I just think the BAG is an utterly pointless waste of space. I'm currently participating in the discussion here, where I have proposed it be disbanded. Please comment there if you agree with me.

Monday, 7 April 2008

Optional RfA questions

Inspired by a comment by JayHenry, I created the RfA cheatsheet. Basically, I HATE optional RfA questions. I can just about tolerate questions that actually require some thought to answer, and are about the candidate. What I hate are what I call "stock" questions - copy and pasted to every RfA. Examples are "What do you think of WP:IAR?" and "When should cool down blocks be used?" There are problems with lots of pointless RfA questions. Firstly, it puts unneeded pressure on the candidate. The questions are described as optional, but they aren't really. People will oppose. Secondly, good answers don't show anything. All they prove is that someone is an RfA regular, or read the recent archives of successful requests. People don't actually have to have read the policy to answer the question - just look at the RfA below for a perfect answer! Reword it a bit, and there you go! With this cheatsheet, I intend to spoil the users' who are obsessed with pointless RfA questions fun. By giving "perfect" answer guides in one easy place, there will be no need for useless questions anymore! Now don't get me wrong, I don't want ignorant admins, which is why I haven't actually written an answer (I'm an RfA regular, barely familiar with any policies when I wrote the guide, by the way). I've linked to the policies involved, and given hints and ideas on what and what not to say. For those who say it's a bad idea, it's no worse than reading a few recent successful RfAs. It's just in one neater page. Goodbye, optional questions!

Friday, 4 April 2008

NotTheWikipediaWeekly MFD

This MFD is one of the most ridiculous I've seen in recent times. It's of the latest NTWW episode, which contains conversations with Somey (Wikipedia review admin), Moulton, and Greg Kohs. Apparently, the episodes are allowing banned users to contribute to Wikipedia via ogg... the banning policy does not state that users cannot speak on to Wikipedia, and if this is a convenient loophole then so be it. As most people know, I disagree with the part of the banning policy, where banned users edits are reverted on sight. If a user comes back and edits productively, they should just be left to get on with it. If they are discovered, then block them fine, but leave the edits. Anyway, NonvocalScream, an editor (at least under this name) here since January nominated the page for deletion. Luckily, most people are seeing sense and voting to keep, but there are some (who I expected) who are voting to delete. Which doesn't make much sense - they are voting to delete something that no banned editors have touched, or even spoken on! As I stated on the page, the ogg files are going to stay regardless of what happens to the page, as they are hosted on Commons, a separate site to Wikipedia. This nomination is completely pointless, won't achieve anything apart from drama, drama and more drama, and all it's done is given more publicity to NTWW - which is good.

Friday, 28 March 2008

Wikimania 2009 Announced

After a very very long delay, Wikimania 2009 was announced today: it'll be in Buenos Aires. Unfortunately, I know nothing about Argentina, and am only familiar with one editor from that country, so I don't really have an opinion on it. As always, I'd like to go, but whether I will is another question.

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Single user login

Single user login has finally been implemented (for admins only). This is where it is possible to have the same user name on every project even if you haven't registered. Eventually being able to have the same preferences such as email address will be implemented. Now with a username like "Majorly", and having registered previously across multiple projects, this wasn't a problem to me since I now own every single instance of "Majorly" across Wikimedia. I feel sorry for other users, particularly those who usurped first names on English Wikipedia (Alison, Daniel, Riana and Sarah come to mind here) since these are names in common use elsewhere, and there will be conflicts. I hope that all these usurpation requests don't drive the stewards crazy :-) Yes, only stewards can usurp accounts that have been linked, by unlinking them. Normal bureaucrats like myself end up with an error message saying the account is reserved. I think the next big thing development-wise will be implementing stable revisions. I personally feel they are a good idea in many ways, but a bad idea in many others. I might write a post on it if and when they are implemented.

Thursday, 20 March 2008

ArbCom list leak

Posted on my talk page:

Here's what they think about you

"He's been prone to more than his share of drama, and acts (as he himself openly admits) as a bit of a drama magnet." - FT2

"I have significant doubts about his judgment. I think a lot of the drama that focusses around him is a result of his habit of over-reacting to minor issues. I have significant doubts about his judgment for a tool as sensitive as CheckUser." - Sam Korn

"Communication skills and temperament are important given that most checkuser and oversight work involves dealing with angry people. See also his current RFB where there have been quite a few negative opinions expressed." - Thebainer

"Majorly has extremely poor communication skills. His involvement in a situation consistently makes its worse by adding drama. If I could change one vote that I ever made, it would be my vote for Majorly as 'crat on meta. I originally opposed him due to bringing off site personal issues into his Foundation decisions. (While the vote was open, I observed him changing a RFA vote on Commons after he had a personal spat with the user who was a friend of his.) But after discussing it with him I changed my vote because he promised to never do it again. I had never really known much about him before that incident but watched him closely afterward. Unfortunately the pattern has continued with him frequently getting into spats with other users including other 'crats. He has resigned different tools on different wikis several times in a huff. He also had issues related to using multiple accounts himself that cause some users to question his trustworthiness. I can think of ten or twenty of people that I would rather give the tools to then him. I see no upside to giving him the tools and loads of problems." - FloNight

"He has poor judgment, and prolongs/inflames disputes more often than he resolves them." - Mindspillage

"His responses to the opposes [in his RFB] have been even more telling." - Dmcdevit

"He's suitable to be a checkuser. He can be very confrontational, which is not something we need in checkusers. He just won't be an effective checkuser. This is not the kind of person we want to say "This person such an outstanding Wikipedian that we feel we can give him checkuser". - Deskana

It sounds genuine. Some of it I'm not at all surprised to read, but some of it is. Users I respected, who play nice and lovely to my face, appear to have sides I never knew. Some (former) arbs I'm surprised to not see are Newyorkbrad and Raul654, but no matter. I think the point has been made.

Blocked on English Wikipedia

So last night, after nearly two years of editing I was indefinitely blocked for restoring a banned user's edits. Ho-hum. Basically, what happened is I saw Alison reverting a load of edits from one editor, and as far as I could see, they were perfectly acceptable edits. I've had issues with removing banned users edits in the past. A user, by the name of Punk Boi 8 was community banned near the end of 2006, and he returned recently as Whiteandnerdy111. He was discovered, and subsequently, Daniel basically removed everything this user ever did. Whether it was productive or not. In some cases, the user adds a reference to an article, and it is reverted back to {{citation needed}}. This is unproductive. Punk Boi 8 was banned for exhausting the community's patience. If I recall, he was about 11 years old and didn't really get the idea of Wikipedia fully, and so the idea was to impose a temporary ban until he was mature enough to contribute. Whiteandnerdy had no apparent problems, and so Punk Boi had obviously improved somewhat. If he had improved, what is the purpose, and benefit in removing perfectly acceptable edits? This is a kid I'm talking about here. He's not looking for trouble at all, just a bit clueless. I queried Daniel on his talk page, and asked him if the user had written a featured article, would he have deleted it as well? He said it was a possibility... remember folks, this is a 12 year old who is only temporarily banned until he grows up a bit. Through his sockpuppet, he has proven that he can work within our community norms, and had probably learnt his lesson.

Now bearing this in mind, I saw Alison do a similar thing. She was reverting articles back to a really poor state (e.g. full of tags, poor prose etc) simply for the reason the user who improved them was banned. I have a gut feeling that even if this user had reverted vandalism, they'd revert back to the vandalism rather than let his edit stay. Anyway, I asked her on her talk page, and reverted a few of her reverts back to an improved version of the article. I was told not to, but with no clue as to why not. I never received any kind of indication about the problem, just a "trust me, you don't want to go there". Daniel told me to email arbcom. The only problem with that is arbcom tend to ignore what I have to say, so I expected the same again. SirFozzie reverted me, then I reverted him... then East718 popped up out of nowhere and blocked me (yes, this is the same East718 who thought it a great idea to bot edit the main page up to 5000 revisions, so obviously a history of great judgement). I received several emails about this - still nothing from Alison, as though I'm expected to know the history of all this. I have received an email from JzG who has informed me more clearly of the situation. If I had been informed, I'd have stopped so much sooner. But no one bothered to. I emailed Alison, but she has not replied. I indicated on my talk page I don't intend to continue editing. I'm not sure I want to continue. I have had nearly two years editing, and my block log is now scarred with something as bad as this. No one warned they'd block me (well Alison did, but was too late). I'd have stopped; I'm not stupid, and have better things to do if people want to make Wikipedia's articles worse.

There's a thread about this over on Wikipedia Review; as I write this there's been over 1000 views. Believe me though, being in the middle of Wiki-drama is no fun at all. I don't want these things to happen - they just happen. I'm sorry for all the problems I caused with this.

EDIT: Alison has very very sadly resigned from both checkuser and admin. While not directly responsible, I was the one who started this business, and it should be me not her.

Wednesday, 19 March 2008

Species bureaucrats

Something funny I noticed whilst browsing around today here. If you don't get it, there's 6 (5 if you don't count Maxim) RfBs up, and they are all passing!!! Not only this, they are proposing *gasp* that all admins should be bureaucrats! Wow, oh wow! This is the kind of thing that certain individuals would retire over on English Wikipedia should such a thing be implemented. I mean, gosh, RfAs and user renames might get done a bit faster! It sounds dreadful! I wrote a short essay here that I think everyone should read. Basically, it sums up how it is easier to be a bureaucrat than an admin. I am a bureaucrat on Meta-wiki (amazing I know...) and trust me, it means basically nothing. I mean, it's Meta-wiki, hardly one of the major wikis (although we do host a lot of potential WP:BEANS pages). But if someone was to propose all admins became bureaucrats, I'd strongly support it. Bureaucratship is not a big deal at all, and those that think it is need to get their facts straight. If we trust someone as an admin, we can trust them as a bcrat, simple as that.


Last night I took part in a Skypecast for NotTheWikipediaWeekly, a newish "rival" to Wikipedia Weekly. I saw took part, but spoke about perhaps 10 words. It was mostly dominated by Sue Gardner giving us her side of the latest foundation scandal (as suggested on Danny Wool's blog). I suggested afterwards to Privatemusings that we had both Danny and Sue on together - would be pretty interesting, as one of them is clearly not telling us the real facts, and as was pointed out, Danny is a pretty respected person (or was at one point). What could possibly be gained by lying about issues like Jimmy and the foundation credit card, and his personal love life?

Monday, 17 March 2008

Upcoming Board elections

It's that time of year again. Yes, it's the Wikimedia Foundation Board Elections! Well, not for a few months, but preparation is well under way. There's place for three members: the current chair, Florence Nibart-Devouard, Domas Mituzas and Michael Snow are all due to end their terms in June. Last year I voted for several people, but I think Eloquence was the only one who was elected (and then left). I hope there's a good selection this year, I thought the last year's candidates, whilst they had their charm, they didn't seem to have that "spark". I'm not sure if I could support any of the three due to end their terms, with the possible exception of Florence, simply due to my being completely unfamiliar with them - and I'm not too keen with the idea of being added to the Board without a vote in the first place.

New blog

Due to certain events, I am temporarily "semi-retired" from Wikipedia. I say temporary very easily, since I've "retired" more times than I can count. This time though, it isn't through choice as such. Following "problems" in real life, and on the wiki, I've decided to step back and do something else for a while. However, I'm still highly interested in the community and the various events going on, and I intend to document them right here, with my own opinion on the subject. I've only ever had one blog in the past, which lasted a long time - hopefully this new one will be worth it.