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Oil Painting of Civil War Battle of Spottsylvania
A Wikipedia Content Dispute.

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"Wikipedia's articles are no place for strong views. Or rather, we feel about strong views the way that a natural history museum feels about tigers. We admire them and want our visitors to see how fierce and clever they are, so we stuff them and mount them for close inspection. We put up all sorts of carefully worded signs to get people to appreciate them as much as we do. But however much we adore tigers, a live tiger loose in the museum is seen as an urgent problem." --WP:TIGER

New discussionEdit

Only 994,050,725 articles left until our billionth article!Edit

We are only 994,050,725 articles away from our 1,000,000,000th article... --Guy Macon

Depiction of Wikimedia Foundation destroying Wikipedia with Visual Editor, Flow, and Mobile AppEdit

Depiction of Wikimedia Foundation destroying Wikipedia with Visual Editor, Flow, and Mobile App.

--Guy Macon

Calvin discovers WikipediaEdit

  • "A little rudeness and disrespect can elevate a meaningless interaction into a battle of wills and add drama to an otherwise dull day." -- Calvin, of Calvin and Hobbes. --Guy Macon

Another chartEdit

Page views for this talk page over the last year

Detailed traffic statistics

--Guy Macon

Arguing with anonymous strangers on the InternetEdit

"Arguing with anonymous strangers on the Internet is a sucker's game because they almost always turn out to be -- or to be indistinguishable from -- self-righteous sixteen-year-olds possessing infinite amounts of free time." --Neil Stephenson, Cryptonomicon
--Guy Macon

Just because you have some money, that doesn't mean that you have to spend it.Edit

Updated essay: see new "2016-2017 update" information near the bottom.

User:Guy Macon/Just because you have some money, that doesn't mean that you have to spend it.

--Guy Macon

The most important[Citation Needed] page on WikipediaEdit

"...It looks like Wikipedia is really pulling out all the stops in their latest appeal to their users..."Edit

Wikipedia Celebrates 750 Years Of American IndependenceEdit

"The Revolution's main adversaries were the patriots and the people from Braveheart," said speaker Tim Capodice, who has edited hundreds of Wikipedia entries on subjects as diverse as Euclidian geometry and Ratfucking. "The patriots, being a rag-tag group of misfits, almost lost on several occasions. But after a string of military antics and a convoluted scheme involving chicken feathers and an inflatable woman, the British were eventually defeated despite a last-minute surge, by a score of 89–87."[1]
--Guy Macon

Wikipedia: DNA editionEdit


Hi Guy, thank you for raising the captcha issue. I had been aware that there was a problem, what I hadn't realised was just how long the Foundation have known about it and done nothing. It's a really important issue - until it is fixed the "Encyclopaedia anyone can edit" claim rings rather hollow. My sister is a senior executive at a major educational organisation which has a blind board member. Anything they do to support him in his role, they do for any of their staff and students who need it. Why? well, of course they wish to avoid legal problems, and they wish to attract the very best, regardless of disability, but it's also a matter of behaving with basic decency. All the best, DuncanHill (talk) 20:00, 10 July 2019 (UTC)

Raystorm's response here. DuncanHill (talk) 21:47, 11 July 2019 (UTC)
Guy (pinging because it's an old thread), thanks for raising the Captcha/blind accessibility issue; I learned of it at User talk:Doc James#13 years. It's infuriating to read the account of it. I suppose this would never rouse the level of interest as the ongoing WMF ban issue, but do you suppose an independent project page somewhere to follow all developments would be worthwhile, as opposed to scattered fragments on Talk pages here and there, which eventually get archived? Not sure how I could help, but if you think of a way, let me know. Mathglot (talk) 05:11, 2 September 2019 (UTC)
Hey, just thought of one way, maybe: do you know anybody at Signpost? How could we get this into the next issue? Surely that couldn't hurt? Mathglot (talk) 05:13, 2 September 2019 (UTC)

WMF Financial TransparencyEdit

Have asked folks from WMF Finance dept. to answer your queries, Let's see ..... WBGconverse 09:32, 14 July 2019 (UTC)

Thanks! Links: [2][3] --Guy Macon (talk) 19:36, 14 July 2019 (UTC)

Have emailed them too at the same time, asking them (or someone else, who is in charge of the affairs) to kindly attend the queries.
So far, no reply. WBGconverse 14:20, 16 July 2019 (UTC)
Have replied over email. Since there's absolutely nothing, which can be rationally expected to be minimally private information and I'm (thus) copy-pasting the reply for your convenience:-

Hello Winged Blades of Godric and <redacted> (CC'd),

Thanks for your message. Our practice is to provide information about the Foundation’s budget and the work that is being funded at our Annual Plan pages and Medium-term plan pages, which is the most important work informing expenditures. You can find information about previous years and see how the budget has changed over time. I have linked to those and additional pages, below.

The information specifically referenced in the thread that you linked to (GuyMacon's questions) was shared with the Audit Committee and the Board at the time the expenses were incurred, in line with our procedures for governance and reporting. You can view board meeting minutes and board meeting materials on meta.

We have also been pointed to this discussion about the possibility of 10 followup questions. Keeping in mind our ethical, legal, and time limitations, we would be interested in hearing a little bit more about what had you in mind.




CC:-Kudpung. ~ Winged BladesGodric 06:42, 18 July 2019 (UTC)

Please send James the following reply, saying it is from me:

I have searched your email to Winged Blades of Godric dated [PLEASE INSERT EXACT DATE AND TIME] and titled [PLEASE INSERT EXACT TITLE] and carefully searched every link you provided.

I could not find the answer to my question (see copy of question below).

You ask "we would be interested in hearing a little bit more about what had you in mind" What I have in mind is that you either answer the question I asked, tell me who can answer the question I asked, of just tell me straight up that the WMF refuses to answer the question I asked.

Here, once again, is my question:

  • Some here have, quite reasonably, asked "where does the money I donate to the Wikipedia Foundation go?" Well, about two and a half million a year goes to buy computer equipment and office furniture.[4]

That's roughly twelve thousand dollars per employee. The report says "The estimated useful life of furniture is five years, while the estimated useful lives of computer equipment and software are three years." so multiply that twelve thousand by three or more -- and we all know that at least some employees will be able to keep using a PC or a desk longer than that.

I would really like to see an itemized list of exactly what computer equipment and office furniture was purchased with the $2,690,659 spent in 2012 and the $2,475,158 spent in 2013. Verifying that those purchases were reasonable and fiscally prudent would go a long way towards giving me confidence that the rest of the money was also spent wisely.
If I can't get an itemized list of where the money was spent, could I at the very least get a breakdown as to how much was spent on computer equipment and how much was spent on office furniture? It wouldn't be an actual answer to my question, but it would at least allow me to either ask a question about computer equipment or ask a question about office furniture instead of repeatedly asking the same question about computer equipment and office furniture.
A little bit of financial transparency would go a long way here. -- Guy Macon
Getting back to my ongoing discussion with Winged Blades of Godric (in other words, not part of the question I want asked in the email), WBG, in your opinion does the above email answer the question I asked?
Also, concerning the claim "The information specifically referenced in the thread that you linked to (GuyMacon's questions) was shared with the Audit Committee and the Board at the time the expenses were incurred, in line with our procedures for governance and reporting. You can view board meeting minutes and board meeting materials on meta", does anyone reading this believe that back in 2013 they predicted the question I would ask years later and gave the Audit Committee or the Board an itemized list of exactly what computer equipment and office furniture was purchased with the $2,690,659 spent in 2012 and the $2,475,158 spent in 2013.? Or did they simply give them a copy of [ ]? --Guy Macon (talk) 14:44, 18 July 2019 (UTC)
User:Winged Blades of Godric It has been a month. Did they ever respond to that email? --Guy Macon (talk) 02:39, 18 August 2019 (UTC)


"Reasoning will never make a man correct an ill opinion, which by reasoning he never acquired: for, in the course of things, men always grow vicious, before they become unbelievers..." --Jonathan Swift ( 1721)[5][6]
In modern language that would be
"You cannot reason people out of something they were not reasoned into. They will viciously attack you instead of abandoning their beliefs".
--Guy Macon (talk) 12:59, 3 August 2019 (UTC)


Who made you Jesus, and why are you trying to get me indeffed. It seems random and since we never spoke before I can only suppose you were being opportunist. I'm Paul, obv you are far greater than me, but please - stab in the heart, rather than through the back. Ceoil

For those following along at home, this concerns Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents#Ceoil --Guy Macon (talk) 14:48, 15 September 2019 (UTC)
Ceoi, Stay off of my talk page. WP:NPA is a Wikipedia policy and it does apply to you. --Guy Macon (talk) 22:00, 15 September 2019 (UTC)

ANI threadEdit

Hi Guy. I am sorry for making comments that were critical of you. I should have asked you some questions first. Could you tell me how you had the whole Ceoil history handy, and why you posted a third party civility complaint? Why didn't you let the two parties work it out themselves, or wait for one of them to take it to WP:ANI? I'm unclear about those two points and this is why I may have jumped to a conclusion that assumed bad faith. Jehochman Talk 23:26, 15 September 2019 (UTC)

I didn't have the history handy. I did a search after noticing the WP:NPA violation by someone I had never heard of before.
I was watching the page to see if Bus Stop was violating his restriction by checking his edit history from time to time. I have mixed feelings about that restriction, so my intent was, if I saw one kind of violation, I would post a gentle reminder on his talk page, and if I saw another kind of violation, I would post a "please reconsider the restriction; this is the sort of thing we really want at ANI" post at AN.
I didn't let the two parties work it out themselves because I looked at Ceoil's edit history and block log. He is about as likely to "work it out" as I am of being elected pope.
I wait for one of them to take it to ANI because I looked at Ceoil's edit history and block log. He constantly uses the argument that his behavior is allowed because of the bad behavior of the person reporting him, and so I decided that the report should be posted by someone who has had zero prior conflicts with Ceoil. Amazingly, he still used that argument, and apparently you fell for it.
As difficult as this may be for you to believe, I am acting in good faith and my motivation is to reduce the amount of toxic behavior by editors such as Ceoil.
So, as long as we are being strait with each other, why did you defend him? Are you one of those people who thinks that if someone creates articles they get a free pass on civility and personal attacks? I can't believe that you actually found his comments to be acceptable or justified. --Guy Macon (talk) 23:56, 15 September 2019 (UTC)
Oh no, I disliked his comments very much and with the above context clarified, you absolutely did the right thing to report him. There were some confounding circumstances that I can explain if you’re interested. These appear to have had nothing whatsoever to do with you. As for why I didn’t block, it’s my policy never to block any editor unless they are so bad they need an indef block. I have explained my philosophy at Swarm’s talk page. I will save text and not repeat it here. Jehochman Talk 00:07, 16 September 2019 (UTC)
Thanks! I think we are good here. Working on the same team, sharing the same goals, etc. Cheers! --Guy Macon (talk) 00:16, 16 September 2019 (UTC)
Thank you for the kind words. Happy editing. Jehochman Talk 00:54, 16 September 2019 (UTC)
You'd be a reasonable Pope. Bring some common sense to the institution. -Roxy, the dog. wooF 09:58, 16 September 2019 (UTC)


In case you haven't seen this yet: I just noticed a few pages that were posted recently on Mediawikiwiki: A description of the WMF Captcha Initiative (which specifically mentions the problems the current Captcha system causes for the visually-impaired) and the notes from a meeting yesterday by the Captcha working group. It looks like they're finally taking the Captcha problems seriously. --Yair rand (talk) 23:12, 17 September 2019 (UTC)

The good news: They appear to be finally working on it.
The bad news: after me asking pretty much everywhere nobody at the WMF thought that I should be notified. Instead I only found out about it when when a sharp-eyed minion ... henchman ... co-conspirator ... cabal member ... fellow editor noticed it.
So what was that again about the WMF working closely with the community and keeping us informed? :(   --Guy Macon (talk) 02:45, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

I'm not sure....Edit

...why you think I don't like you. As I said on Talk:Right-wing politics, we've had our disputes in the past, but I distinctly remember our making up, and I don't think there have been any problems between us since then. I am truly mystified about why you would say that. Whatever I did, I apologize. Beyond My Ken (talk) 01:07, 27 September 2019 (UTC)

I took the time to look it up and I found the place where my memory went wrong. I had vaguely remembered the title of this section[7] but completely forgot the content. My apologies. Sorry about that. --Guy Macon (talk) 05:15, 27 September 2019 (UTC)
No problem. So we're good? Beyond My Ken (talk) 04:45, 29 September 2019 (UTC)
Definitely. --Guy Macon (talk) 04:48, 29 September 2019 (UTC)

Partial wikibreakEdit

Real-life issues will be keeping me busy for a while, so don't expect a lot of Wikipedia editing from me. I will probably be able to make small edits like reverting vandalism, but don't expect much more than that for a while. My henchmen talk page watchers will no doubt handle anything that comes up. -Guy Macon (talk) 03:11, 29 September 2019 (UTC)

"Conspiracy theory" RfCEdit

Greetings. I think withdrawing this RfC was the right move. I'm sympathetic to some of the arguments that the term conspiracy theory should be attributed, at least in certain cases (but not clear-cut ones like Moon landing conspiracy theories). I concur with UnladenSwallow that a better request might had been worded something like, "Should we add the term 'conspiracy theory' to the 'Contentious labels' section?", in case this comes up again. —06:30, 9 October 2019 (UTC)

I think you should list the RfC somewhere else with the question altered to be about contentious labels. I really appreciate your attempt to solve this problem. Shinealittlelight (talk) 13:15, 9 October 2019 (UTC)

Wikimedia Right to InformationEdit

I respect the 2017 article you wrote for The Signpost, "Wikipedia has cancer". In this post you describe how the Wikimedia Foundation has grown its operating base to require increasing investment, and you question the sustainability of it all. You changed thoughts and inspired interesting conversation with this narrative. Enough of the narrative is plausible enough to justify further development of the matter of Wikimedia community governance,

I am cautious in approaching you because in the past I have perceived you as a bit passionate, and a bit quick to make demands, and perhaps unwilling to make a compromise over time. Personally, I want changes too, but I favor a softer approach in the longer term with some mutual negotiation and civil process.

I am writing to share with you a wish that I have, because I think you might also share it. I also want to share with you a draft of a process for your consideration. Both my wish and the process draft are at meta:Right to Information. To the extent of your interest and if you wish to discuss then either comment on the talk page there or ping me to anywhere.

I am probably not ready to make hard demands for specific information, such as you have done for example regarding the WMF office furniture budget, but I am ready to go deeper than what the WMF currently reports. Thanks for your advocacy in this space and for any consideration you have to my draft. Blue Rasberry (talk) 18:27, 12 October 2019 (UTC)

You bring up a good point, and something that I should clarify. When something is my initiative I am going to do things the way that I think will be most effective. If somebody wants me to do things differently they are going to have to convince me that the different way will be more effective. On the other hand, if I am trying to help you out when you are doing something that is your initiative, my goal is to do things exactly how you think will be most effective. So please tell me if I fail to do anything your "softer approach in the longer term with some mutual negotiation and civil process" way and I will do my level best to adjust my approach. I think it will be interesting to see if your way works better. If it does, great! We clearly have the same goals even if our methods are different.
Regarding the furniture question, keep in mind that it was carefully designed to address the following question: will the WMF ever respond to any request for more financial transparency? Will they respond in any way, even if the response is "no"? After seeing at least a dozen requests for more financial transparency rejected with a stock "gosh, we would really love to reveal that but it would be just to much darn work!" answer, I picked the smallest, most trivial and easiest to answer question. They would not respond to that one either.
Now I certainly don't want to re-ask the furniture question using your proposed procedure. I want you to succeed if you can and my previous requests for more financial transparency might prejudice any responses. I could ask something else, like a detailed breakdown of everything spent on one of the smaller Wikimanias, but I can see two potential problems with doing that. First, will it just get the standard "gosh, we would really love to reveal that but..." response? Second, would having my name on any request poison the well? This might be similar to this joke:
  • A politician went to the teamster's union and asked them to help him get re-elected. The union boss said "we will be glad to help. Do you want us to come out as being for you or against you?"
Please advise as to what actions on my part you think will give your initiative the best chance of success. I am fine with following your lead and seeing where it takes you.
I will now make some predictions: I predict that you will get a number of responses from ordinary Wikipedia editors who have self-appointed themselves as spokespersons for the WMF, and interacting with them will eat up a significant amount of your time. I predict that exactly zero of the information requests your process generates will get any actual answers from anyone with (WMF) in their username. You might get a "we value transparency and thank you for your input; we will be looking into this" non-answer without any followup addressing the actual question asked, but I predict no actual answers, ever. I sincerely hope that I am wrong. --Guy Macon (talk) 21:25, 12 October 2019 (UTC)
Here is another example of me asking a question:
Please give me your honest evaluation: In this example, have I been too passionate? A bit quick to make demands? Unwilling to make a compromise over time (in this case "over time" means "13 years with no action by the WMF"...)? --Guy Macon (talk) 21:58, 12 October 2019 (UTC)
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