Wikipedia:Village pump (news)/Archive G

Croatian wikipedia

Dear all,

please note that numerous articles published at Croatian section of this project represent direct, shameful and blatant insult to any civilized person due to glorification of Nazi war criminals. It is pathetic to describe mass murderers as "novel authors, statesmen or war leadres" and not even mentioning attrocities they have commited. Examples:ććć

I hope that Wikipedia's policy is not language-specific, ie. if Nazis are not glorified at English Wikipedia, they should't be grorified elsewhere, should they?


Velimir Dedic

Wikipedia's policy is language specific, except for a few of the main policies. Grorification is not allowed on any wikipedia, as WP:NPOV should be a basic principle everywhere. Eugène van der Pijll 18:03, 4 September 2006 (UTC)
And, I would add, we editors on the English-language Wikipedia have no control over other language Wikipedias. I was going to refer you to the Croatian equivalent of the neutral point of view (NPOV) policy, but there doesn't seem to be a link for it. You need to take this up with the administrators on the Croatian-language Wikipedia. -- Donald Albury 19:08, 4 September 2006 (UTC)

1911 Encyclopedia Britannica on wiki

The 1911 Encyclopaedia Brittanica is now available in a wiki at Intended usage is to only edit the article pages for scanning errors, links, categories and such, but to give freedom to write your own material about a subject at the talk page.

Note that this project is not a Wikimedia project. It is a commercial site (using adverts) and its only relationship with Wikipedia is that it uses the same wiki software. Nevertheless I would like to invite anyone interested to come over and take a look, maybe make an edit. - Andre Engels 15:14, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

See also: Wikipedia:1911 Encyclopedia topics. Martin 15:19, 18 August 2006 (UTC)
I've done a little over there. It's a definitely different, but commendable, project. - Jmabel | Talk 18:14, 20 August 2006 (UTC)
Though not a freely-licensed one; according to their copyright page, although the source material of the 1911 encyclopedia is public-domain, the owners of that site are claiming copyright to anything that's done to it in the site (any changes, fixes, improvements, etc.), and explicitly barring the use of such material on any other site. *Dan T.* 22:46, 26 August 2006 (UTC)
But since, other than project pages & talk pages all anyone is doing is fixing the bad scans and providing more useful links, there isn't much there that constitutes original work. I suppose someone could not copy a version with Wikilinks... -- Jmabel | Talk 04:54, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

This doesn't look like the complete 1911. My litmus test is to see if they left the anachronistic material in the "race" acticle. Sure enough, its gone. Yakuman 06:43, 1 September 2006 (UTC)

It being a wiki, one could try restoring it. It would be interesting to see what would happen, since their avowed intent is to accurately reproduce the 1911 EB. - Jmabel | Talk 00:22, 3 September 2006 (UTC)

BBC article

BBC website has an article detailing the proposals for stable versions on Wikipedia apparently written by a Wikipedian (and journalist) Bill Thompson. A rather sedate discussion compared to many mentions Wikipedia gets in the media: [1] Rmhermen 13:54, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2006-08-28/In the news and Jimbo's comments. User:Zoe|(talk) 18:41, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
Where is the actual discussion on Wikipedia of this "policy"? ~ Booya Bazooka 14:22, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
de:Wikipedia Diskussion:Geprüfte Versionen and de:Wikipedia Diskussion:Gesichtete Versionen
It's coming to de:, not here (for now). --Pjacobi 07:53, 1 September 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia Inc.

According to the now-deleted article at Wikipedia Inc., there's a Japanese software company calling itself Wikipedia Inc. at I wonder if the Wikimedia Foundation is aware of this? User:Zoe|(talk) 17:32, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Earlier mention at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Archive5#Wikipedia Inc. — trademark infringement?, FWIW. Femto 17:49, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
Thanks, Femto, I somehow managed not to notice that its first time through. User:Zoe|(talk) 18:12, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
Doesn't necessarily have to mean that something happened since then (I'll not go digging through Jimbo's talk page...) Femto 19:03, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Game cheat site is "a Wikipedia for the gaming set"

This article on game cheating in the Washington Post refers to as "a Wikipedia for the gaming set". Is "Wikipedia" becoming a generic term for online reference sites (especially those that are editable by their readers)? *Dan T.* 03:20, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

I hope Wikipedia doesn't become a genericized trademark. Imagine people saying things like "I just found this new wikipedia", or "I'd check a golf wikipedia for that", or "What color is a baboon? Wikipedia it." Deco 03:47, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
Not likely; people are saying "What colour is a baboon?" "Wiki it".
That site mistakenly refers to this one as "", a common error; it's actually .org. *Dan T.* 12:05, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
"" redirects to "", so it is not a grievous error. -- Donald Albury 13:23, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

McClatchy News article on Wikipedia and Gil Gutknecht

OK, who's Wayne Saewyc? 'Fess up. And why are they claiming we clamped down on Congressional staffers last week? That was months ago. User:Zoe|(talk) 18:01, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

I didn't know Wikipedia had spokespeople in Vancouver. Did Wikipedia know it had spokespeople in Vancouver? (and no, it's not me.) Tony Fox (arf!) 20:22, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

And now see this - Wayne Saewyc again. Who is this guy? User:Zoe|(talk) 02:42, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia is turning up in the media everywhere you turn these days... whether it's the Colbert Report, the front page of the New York Times, a local-paper article on ferries, or a comic book (Simpsons or Superman), you never know where we'll be mentioned. Maybe that's why the Alexa page rank keeps going up (it's at 14 today). *Dan T.* 02:47, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Wayne Saewyc = user:Amgine. When it comes to press stuff, he's a magician. Raul654 02:48, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Thanks, Mark. User:Zoe|(talk) 02:51, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
Good to know it's not some random person! Tony Fox (arf!) 03:04, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia mentioned on this morning's The Stephanie Miller Show

On this morning's The Stephanie Miller Show, a listener called in to discuss a bit that they had done last Friday where the show's "voice monkey", Jim Ward, had done a Somerset dialect. The caller said that to him, the dialect had sounded like pirate speech, so he had gone to Wikipedia and sure enough, Wikipedia had confirmed it. I assume he was talking about our article at West Country dialects. User:Zoe|(talk) 17:56, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

Wikiality is a TV buzz word of the year

Stephen Colbert's wikiality, created in reference to Wikipedia, has been named a television buzzword of the year. [2]. Dragons flight 20:39, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

Should length of an article signify importance of topic?

This appeared in Newsweek:

"Wales admits that sometimes the lack of an all-controlling editor leads Wikipedia to sometimes indefensible imbalances (for instance, the entry on Star Trek's Mr. Spock is more than twice as long as the item about Flaubert). But he contends that's just a temporary effect of the geeky flavor of the burgeoning Wikipedia community in this early stage."

Is there a defensible concept of 'imbalance' when including more text has nearly zero marginal cost? It is understandable that traditional encyclopedia editors agonized over the amount of space to give one topic vs another, but this is not suitable for wiki potentates to worry about. When there is no reason not to say more (if it is relevant and correct) it is merely a matter of social prejudice to determine whether Mr Spock 'should' have more or less space than Flaubert.

One thing that Wikipedia could try to do more systematically is to have reasonably short articles that then link to longer articles about the same subject. This is done in a few places now, but I currently can't find an example.

--wellsoberlin 01:35, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

It looks like another variant of the 80:20 rule, only in this case it's something like 80% of Wikipedia's coverage is concerned with the last 20 years. Spock the character was introduced almost 40 years ago, but he has appeared in films released within the past 20 years. Flaubert, on the other hand, has been dead for 125 years. Actually, because Madame Bovary has been released as a film in 1991 and Salammbô has been drawn on for a computer game, even Flaubert overlaps a little into the past 20 years. -- Donald Albury 12:03, 27 August 2006 (UTC)



I can't believe we don't have an article on "handwaving freakoutery." If we did, the above article could be really useful for it! Yeesh. "OMG, Wikipedia isn't free - they locked down an article!" Well, it not actually being an article, and semiprotection being a fairly standard thing, kind of indicate someone didn't do any research. Yeesh. Tony Fox (arf!) 21:39, 26 August 2006 (UTC)
Feel that? No? That's the complete lack of air disturbance created by a passing slow news day. --Sam Blanning(talk) 21:57, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

Counterfeit Wikimedia projects

An anonymous person, using the infamous 1&1 web hosting service, has created, a domain which contains complete (albeit old) copies of en:Wikipedia[3], en:Wiktionary[4], and en:Wikiquote[5], even including user pages. These copies do not give attribution to the projects; they claim to be the projects. According to m:Talk:Wikimedia trademarks, there seems to be some disagreement over whether Wikimedia should attempt to enforce or even register its trademarks. From my own point of view, I have enough problem fighting identity theft without allowing someone to copy my user pages to a mock-Wikimedia project and allowing strangers to register my username there, pretending to be the person who wrote all my comments. I've registered my username on this counterfeit on all three subprojects. (Thanks to q:User:Rumour for bringing this to en:Wikiquote's attention.) ~ Jeff Q (talk) 12:55, 17 July 2006 (UTC)

How... odd. Look at their Wikipedia version. Two users, one of them you [6]. The other appears to have selectively usurped the contributions of User:Damian Yerrick... there, here. Hrm. Shimgray | talk | 13:13, 17 July 2006 (UTC)
I only registered there to keep someone from pretending to be me, after Rumour warned us at Wikiquote about this "farce". Some Wikiquotians (and Wikipedians) like Rumour, Kalki, and myself, have registered our existing Wikimedia usernames on its Wikiquote to prevent identity cybersquatting. I don't think anyone at WQ has noticed yet that there are 3 projects. (I'll notify them in a moment.) "WikiSysop", the user who apparently copied Damian Yerrick's edits, seems to be the original user, presumably the person who created these three projects. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 13:36, 17 July 2006 (UTC)
Yeah... I'm just wondering, why him? why those few edits? it's all v. odd. (Plus, their mediawiki installation seems to be broken) Shimgray | talk | 13:42, 17 July 2006 (UTC)
I have no idea of why the Damian edits, but I think all the rest is simply because this person just slapped up mass copies without much (successful) effort to customize the wiki to represent itself properly and have all its non-article pages and links work correctly. Most Wikimedia copies don't have this problem because they only copy the articles themselves, which aren't allow to reference project or user namespace. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 15:14, 17 July 2006 (UTC)
It seems to be a January 2005 dump, nothing more recent except what people have specifically edited there. I also created my account there and deleted all of the content on the Zoe user and talk pages. But be careful, people, if you created an account under your user name there, that you didn't use the password that you use to log in here, because somebody as unethical as the person who runs that site wouldn't hesitate to take your password and log in here with it. User:Zoe|(talk) 03:01, 18 July 2006 (UTC)
This is the reason {{userpage}} exists. It's a good idea to use it on your user page (use subst, since some mirrors do not do template transclusion). --cesarb 04:00, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

Interesting change to their "Template:In the news" at .. doesn't appear to take effect on main page though. -- Chuq 14:29, 12 August 2006 (UTC)

possible strategy re counterfeits?

suggest that all bureacrats create accounts on the fake sites and turn everyone into sysops there and all admins create accounts and start vandalbotting and deleting at top speed... since they have no labor force, it would be fairly tough for the fake sites for a while... User:Pedant 03:13, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Bureaucrats and admins here will have no special privileges on other sites. Wikipedians should not vandalise on other sites no matter how much those sites may be in the wrong. Remember, we're the good guys!-gadfium 05:58, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Their entire Recent Changes page looks like vandalism by User:Pedant and some interesting spam postings. I don't think anybody over there pays attention to what's going on. User:Zoe|(talk) 02:20, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

direct quote from the main page: "In this English version, started in 2001, we are currently working on 18446744073709551591 articles." 18.4 billion billion. that's a lot of articles.. maybe they're referencing the whole internet, and more? --naught101 23:20, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

Quenya Wikipedia

There is a test Wikipedia in Quenya opened in the Incubator: [7]. Everyone is welcome to participate. --Djordje D. Bozovic 12:28, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

Straw Poll

Due to the recent turmoil on community pages, a large community straw poll is being conducted. Wikipedia:Communities strawpoll is now open for voting. Despite resolutions made on this page, many others are facing turmoil similar to what this page is, or once did face. In an effor to solve the issue, I invite all Wikipedians to vote there by September 18th on this page following the procedures and ballot instuctions explained there. Thank You. Ericsaindon2 06:20, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

Gil Gutknecht

Lots of articles in the news today about Congressman Gutknecht's staff attempting to whitewash his Wikipedia article. See [8] for one. User:Zoe|(talk) 22:53, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

Regarding the accuracy and tone of these articles, yes, removing bad things about yourself and replacing an article with your own POV content should not be done. But Wikipedia:Autobiography is not a "policy" and only suggests "avoid[ing]" editing your own article; there is no prohibition, and there have been positive AUTO contributions (although maybe not by Congressmen). Deco 02:47, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

Parameter no longer necessary for Template:Lowercase

In most cases, it should now be possible to drop the parameter when using Template:Lowercase. That's because I've added a default value of {{LCFIRST:{{PAGENAME}}}}. NeonMerlin 17:03, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

Wikiversity Day One

Well, sort of. has been active for more than a year, but that is a different discussion for a totally different forum.

This is the first day that has been up and running, where there has been quite a bit of activity today from those who are participants with Wikiversity. Wikipedia now has a new sister project up and running, even though it is really a brand new project. Undecided yet is how to do the inter-wiki links between Wikiversity and the other sister projects, although several suggestions have been made. If you want to be in on the ground floor of a new Wikimedia project, today is the day to get things rolling. --Robert Horning 23:46, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

Tales of conspiracy from across the Grid

Via Pharyngula comes this story of deceit and conspiracy. I mentioned this over on the Signpost tip line, but it might belong here too. Interesting story. . . if true. Any gumshoes feel like following it up? Anville 03:39, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

New York Times: Jimbo likes his heavy duty flash light

"At home, Mr. Wales has honed the good-enough style so well -- or rather, not honed it -- that the place will not even remotely be featured in House & Garden. He dresses casually, Florida-style, goes by the nickname Jimbo, and although he does drive a foreign car, it's a Hyundai Accent.

It's sort of like an appliance as a car, he said. He bought his DVD player at Wal-Mart, and his television set has something inside it called a cathode ray tube. Heard of it, kids?

About the only thing he has that aspires to a higher ideal is, of all things, a flashlight. The SureFire M6 blasts the competition, which averages 60 lumens, with a 250-lumen light beam. The company bills it as a searchlight disguised as a flashlight and boasts that SWAT teams use the lights to temporarily blind suspects at night.

Who needs a baseball bat? said Mr. Wales, who keeps his M6 on his bedside table not as a weapon but in case he, you know, needs a flashlight. You have to love the kitsch of that, that there's an assault flashlight now.

The $400 M6, which is eight inches long, holds six lithium batteries and is housed in aerospace-grade aluminum, is the product of a design school that might be called Modern Militant, the most familiar example of which is the Hummer. It's really, really, really, really bright, Mr. Wales said. Anyone who tries to one-up me with their fancy car or whatever, I've got 'em. I say, 'Well, I have a brighter flashlight.' "

New York Times, August 13, 2006

What happened to the Times? lots of issues | leave me a message 23:12, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

I don't know but it's a kind of cute little article. Lisiate 20:53, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
Strange. I love it. Makes me want to visit Jimbo in his house (but I can't plane tickets, I don't want to go to Florida in August, and I don't spontaneously visit people's houses). —this is messedrocker (talk) 21:04, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

More encouragement of vandalism

Apparently Stephen Colbert vandalised Wikipedia live on his TV show. Looks like we have a trend. Wikipedia is seen by the conventional media as an enemy and they want to discredit it by any means necessary.  Grue  18:47, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

I wouldn't exactly characterize Stephen Colbert as representative of conventional media. I think the subtext (as many of his viewers likely appreciated) was actually pro-Wikipedia.--ragesoss 19:02, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
I don't know what this guy represents since I'm not American. The fact is that many articles had to be protected from editing and some are still protected, and people can't make legitimate edits to these articles. How's this pro-Wikipedia?  Grue  19:07, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Telling his fans to make bad faith edits is obviously disruptive in the short term. But in the context of his show and its running themes, this was more an implicit comment on truth bending and "wikiality" within traditional media than an attack on Wikipedia's credibility. As with the Onion article last week, Colbert uses hyperbolic examples of what "anyone can edit" might lead to, but in the end both are funny in part because the examples are so far off from the reality of Wikipedia's results.--ragesoss 19:42, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
If you want to learn more about Stephen Colbert and what he represents, Wikipedia has a fairly good article about him. --Dystopos 19:52, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Colbert's persona on the Colbert Report show is a parody of ignorant right-wing US TV pundits. Most of what he says and does on that show is satirical and not necessarily what he himself actually believes. Most of his fans understand this. Bwithh 13:48, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
That's right - he acts like a moron but it's cool because he's actually making fun of morons! Ha ha, funny, yes? Other people who act like morons *are* morons, but not him! Praise his cleverness! - DavidWBrooks 21:23, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
Precisely. The hinge-pin is that his audience understands the joke and views him as an entertainer rather than a trusted leader. --Dystopos 16:33, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

There is too much truth available on wikipedia, and in much too handy of a format. It is a threat to certain types of people who rely on the ignorant populace remaining so. User:Pedant 03:40, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Can History Be Open Source? Wikipedia and the Future of the Past

Newest in the line of peer-reviewed articles about Wikipedia and one of very few not from the field of computer sciences, this recent (June'06) publication in Journal of American history is nicely written (no dense 'sholarese') and rather positive of Wiki. Enjoy! --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 17:27, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

Indeed it is. Made its way into the Signpost last week. (Wikipedia:Wikipedia Signpost/2006-06-26/In the news). Cheers ;) -- Chris 73 | Talk 18:04, 10 July 2006 (UTC)
I have missed it, but it wasn't mentioned in 'Wikipedia in academic studies' yet, and seems to have slipped the 'attention' of most community, which is a shame. This is as good stuff as the famous Nature article. I am only in the middle of it, but there was already a good description of Wikipedia 'what/who/hows' that many (like some NYT journalists...) should read, a brief but useful external review review of some American history articles (I left a note on WP:EPR and criticized articles') and just now I am reading a comparison between Wikipedia, Encarta and American National Biography Online... --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 18:13, 10 July 2006 (UTC)
It is probably the most important publication yet in terms of reaching academics; a WP discussion recently started (and continues still) on a history of science, technology and medicine listserv [9], and several different participants recommended the article to the nay-sayers.--ragesoss 19:51, 10 July 2006 (UTC)
I agree. The Nature: Wikipedia-Britannica comparison was more towards mainstream news, but this article is directed more towards academia. Makes me feel good to be part of Wikipedia. -- Chris 73 | Talk 22:32, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

The article also, alas, accurately pinpoints our biggest weakness, and the reason that professional historians (it examines only history, but this applies in other fields) can continue to exist in a wikipedia world, if I may quote a chunk:

"Good historical writing requires not just factual accuracy but also a command of the scholarly literature, persuasive analysis and interpretations, and clear and engaging prose. By those measures, American National Biography Online easily outdistances Wikipedia.
"Compare, for example, Wikipedia’s 7,650-word portrait of Abraham Lincoln with the 11,000-word article in American National Biography Online. ... Surely any reader of this journal would prefer the American National Biography Online sketch by the prominent Civil War historian James McPherson. Part of the difference lies in McPherson’s richer contextualization .... But McPherson’s profile is distinguished even more by his artful use of quotations to capture Lincoln’s voice, by his evocative word portraits ... and by his ability to convey a profound message in a handful of words ... By contrast, Wikipedia’s assessment is both verbose and dull."

- DavidWBrooks 23:13, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

The same could be said for science writing. Science writing, however, is less about big names and more about factual validity. --Oldak Quill 07:57, 11 July 2006 (UTC)
Right, but he also points out later that some ouf our entries are better then those in ANBO, and he notes that ANBO being non-free is much less known and has much less impact. I can't but think that 1) we are slowly but surely approaching ANBO quality and will eventually surpass it and 2) ANBO, which is supported by taxpayers, should be free, and preferably copylefted so it can be incorporate into Wikipedia :) --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 00:37, 13 July 2006 (UTC)
I can't find any evidence that ANBO is taxpayer supported. It was done by the American Council of Learned Societies which is a private non-profit.[10] Rmhermen 01:00, 13 July 2006 (UTC)
Whether Wikipedia really will continue improve over time, and so "eventually surpass" various levels of quality, or wether it will regress to the mean and stagnate, is perhaps the most interesting question about this whole experiment. - DavidWBrooks 01:16, 13 July 2006 (UTC)
True, but I see no signs to indicate the project may fail.--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 01:38, 13 July 2006 (UTC)
My mistake. To quote from the article: "What about American National Biography Online — written by professional historians, sponsored by our scholarly societies, and supported by millions of dollars in foundation and government grants?"--Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus Talk 01:38, 13 July 2006 (UTC)

In any case, a great article. I've added a link from Wikipedia:Researching With Wikipedia; I'm sure there are many other things that should link to it. Also, someone should go through and use it as a resource for its many specific criticisms, pretty much all of which look valid. - Jmabel | Talk 00:06, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

I've added a proposal to the Wikipedia Village Pump:Proposals that may help with this. It's title is "Wikipedia articles by classrooms as school projects". I don't know how to add a timestamp to it, so if anyone wants to please do so for the date of August 14, 2006 (5:57 pm EST).

Jarod Lanier thinks his WP article is misleading

Jarod Lanier uses his dissatisfaction with his WP article as a springboard for discussing what's wrong with WP. [11] His suggestion: put WP through a low-pass filter. Zora 00:19, 5 June 2006 (UTC)

Every time someone sees the slightest thing they don't like in their own bio on wikipedia, they suddenly decide that there is a systemic problem with wikipedia. --Bachrach44 13:16, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Not necessarily. Cory Doctorow, for instance, is quite supportive of Wikipedia because he found a mistake in his article.--Sean Black 20:40, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
And, frankly, it's not so unreasonable that if you find strangers have created erroneous information about you which shows up high on Google searches - potentially swamping your own online reality with their mistakes - that you react rather strongly. We shouldn't get huffy when they do. - DavidWBrooks 21:23, 8 June 2006 (UTC)
What a muddled essay. "...the lack of a coherent voice or design sensibility in an esthetic sense is one negative quality of both open source software and the Wikipedia." Eh? In one paragraph, he castigates WP for blandness and for erasing contributors' identities, then complains that there is no coherent single voice? And the graphic design of WP is actually very pretty, thank you very much. He goes on "The New York Times, of all places, has recently published op-ed pieces supporting the pseudo-idea of intelligent design." So has Tech Central Station -- the home of Robert McHenry, the self-appointed guardian of meritocracy (see below). Practically everything Lanier complains about is just as big a problem in the compilation of standard encyclopedias, the difference being that the controversies are carefully hidden. Xanthoxyl 23:31, 9 June 2006 (UTC)
The title of this section is misleading. The essay in question is overlong and not terribly to the point but it does raise important issues and make valid criticism. I suggest editors read at least half and skim it all. John  Reid 05:28, 10 June 2006 (UTC)
I especially enjoyed the statement that WP is an " fetish site for foolish collectivism". I thought I had been helping edit an encyclopedia, now I find out it's a fetsih site...oh, I'm so ashamed. I'll probably be driven to commit ritual suicide, just as soon as I'm done laughing :) Doc Tropics 17:12, 17 June 2006 (UTC)

I find it satisfyingly ironic that his name is actually "Jaron Lanier" and not "Jarod Lanier". Vmand 23:50, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

Theres now a podcast of an interview with Lanier at the Philosopher's Zone. Whilst I don't agree with all his points I think its one of the best though through critiques of wikipedia I've read, a level above the typical NYT article. --Salix alba (talk) 07:36, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

FWIW, complaining about blandness and erasing contributors' identities is in no way inconsistent with complaining that a particular article has no coherent single voice. One of the downsides of our approach is what I've called "the war on prose". Almost any well-turned phrase expresses some degree of POV. Our effort to be NPOV is not easily compatible with strong authorial voice. For the opposite extreme in encylopedia-writing, consider the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica (Eleventh Edition). It's a wonderful, well-written, highly opinionated encyclopedia, the culmination of Victorian- and Edwardian-era scholarship. I love it. An equivalent today might be a fascinating document. If someone wanted to create one, I'd love to see them draw heavily on our material to build it. But it would be a very different work than we are creating. - Jmabel | Talk 22:59, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia Bill of Rights

I make a suggestion, a Wikipedia Bill of Rights to protect the rights of people making a good faith effort to expand Wikipedia.

1. No one under 21 years of age shall delete content (age restrictions are common, younger people can post content but not destroy it. I find teens are better at making than destroying).

2. No one shall delete more content in any month than they create, no member shall make the collective information smaller.

3. Deleting bots can only be used by a governing board elected.

4. Each year there shall be an election of all registered individuals who have been active editors to elect a government of Wikipedia who will have the responsiblity to deal with abuse, they will monitor the size of Wikipedia and will have the power to restrict deletions or increase them, only they can exercise the power to run bots.

5. Any deletion can be over ruled by a vote of 3 active editors, and as long as they are active no deletion against a site can take place, though edits are allowed. To edit shall be the means of dealing with questions.

6. Because Google each payment for every search entered, constituting a tax on the Internet, Wikipedia understands the value to linking content to external web sites, including does that conduct economic activity via the Internet. These links shall be clearly marketed as FOR PROFIT sites.

--Rhooker1236 21:36, 2 July 2006 (UTC) Robert Hooker July 2 2006. Support Good Wiki Government. Email removed because it attracted nothing but African based get rich Spam.

  1. Some of our best admins are under 21.
  2. I do like creating better, but some material has to be removed. If people are good at that, why stop them?
  3. Do we have those?
  4. Wikipedia is not a democracy (and IMO shouldn't be either), We do have WP:RFA.
  5. Three active editors can still be 100 percent wrong. Garion96 (talk) 21:58, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
2)I often kill over 100 copyvios a month. I could never create that much content.
3)Deltion bots could only be created by community aproval. Judging by current atitudes that will happen some time after the heat death of the universe.
4)Past experence suggests that the community disslikes giving that much power over policy to anyone. Arcom elections happen once a year but their powers are limited. The board generaly avoids that level of involvement in policy.
5)forget it. At any given time we have more than three active troll
6)google is nothing to do with us.
All in all you have less than 50 edits and appear to want to start a revolution. I sugest you are on the wrong project.Geni 22:15, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
"All in all you have less than 50 edits and appear to want to start a revolution. I sugest you are on the wrong project." I am just suggesting what I think would be good ideas for governance and opening them up to considered responses. Yes I want to start a revolution, perhaps you could link the number of edits one needs to make before they can come up with suggestions for governance. If editors decide to look at my edits rather than the content well that is not very surprising. .--Rhooker1236

Hi RH, I'm still largely a wiki-newbie too, with only 100 Mainspace edits, but I'd like to share my views on the points you've raised. You seem to have a major concern about deletions, which can certainly be a touchy topic, especially for the authors of articles that get nom'd for AfD. There are a couple of things you can do to try and avoid AfD, and the single most effective is this: add content, maintain NPOV, and cite your sources. If you work slowly, like I do, it can help to create a temp page in your Userspace and work on the article there first. When an article does get nom'd for AfD, then it becomes important to participate in the process. Make your own points as clearly and concisely as you can, and be sure to read (and think about) the points that other editors are making. Be prepared to change your mind. If you find that consensus is against you, there might be a valid reason for it. More than once I've changed my 'vote' in AfD after being presented with sound reasons; I've also deleted content that I put up when I came to realize that other editors made valid points against its suitability. Regarding your comments about 'underage' contributors and more governance on WP...well, it might sound like a good idea to you, but these kinds of proposals have a history of being soundly defeated; most wikipedians seem to be reasonably content with the structure we've got. It works for me :) --Doc Tropics Message in a bottle 15:34, 3 July 2006 (UTC)#

I have never found myself against a group. Generally how smaller area articles are deleted is someone comes along and determines to delete it. I will do all the things posted above but the outcome is utterly unpredictable. The bias element is the most troubling since any text can be seen as having some bias, even a bias of objectivity. Again I am concerned by the level of corporal speak here, how is the opinion of most of the million or so wikipedians determined? Where can I find what Wikipedians think? It seems 1 person is often willing to speak for the entire encyclopedia. If we are going to govern by mass consent we should have some governance for obtaining it..--Rhooker1236
In general no one person speaks for WP except --flourish of trumpets -- Jimbo Wales. We all speak for ourselves however, on whatever topic interests us at the moment, often at great length with amazingly imaginative vocabularies. The idea of "mass consent" may be a bit of a misconception. For example, even the most popular RfA rarely draws more than 100 comments, and an RfD can be closed if just a dozen people (or even less) express their opinions. Of course mistakes can be made this way, but there are mechanisms in place for that too. Maybe, if you find yourself "against a group", they actually have valid reasons for their talk to them; try to understand their reasons even if you don't agree with them. Aside from vandals and trolls, there are very few problems on WP which can't be solved by talking to people. --Doc Tropics Message in a bottle 05:06, 8 July 2006 (UTC)
1. I have never had a delete discussion in the context of a group, it has always been one admin making quesses about my motivations.
2. Discussion with many WikiAdmins is rather difficult since they revert to constent demands to follow set ettiquete (which is never consistent), requirements for signing, and other formatting demands. This is always very tiresome.
3. Once you get beyond the endless demands that you follow Wikipedias rules for format, you have to deal with the endless jargon. Things are never said clearly. And frankly some things are just idiotic, like Objective Point of View. Any first year university student in Philosophy knows how difficult that is, but an editor can come along and say NOPV and zap you and you can't do anything about it.
4. Most experts are busy people who see Wikipedia as nothing more than an experement, many admins put Wikipedia at the centre of their lives. In discourse between these groups supposedly held on equal terms the admin will always win, and most people are not as nerdy as I and will not conduct an extensive study of Wikipedia culture for a graduate paper.
5. For everyone like me who complains thousands just stop using the service.
6. No encyclopedia is remembered for what artciles it deleted.
7. Users see articles after entering search strips of links from the top page. Your obsession with removing NONs and NOPVs for obscure entries ignores the USER perspective. If something is NON then no user will search on it, then it does not matter if it is in Wikipedia or not.
As Mr Wales told the court, your an ISP not a publisher!!!!--Rhooker1236 11:36, 15 July 2006 (UTC)
I'm sorry your vanity page got deleted. I'm very, very sorry. JChap (talkcontribs) 04:44, 17 July 2006 (UTC)

There is no situation where one administrator can unilaterally delete a page without appeal. You can always bring the matter to Wikipedia:Articles for deletion or, if you didn't get there in time Wikipedia:Deletion review. Both invite broad participation.

NPOV is not about utter objectivity. It is about a style of writing that tries to make clear when opinions are expressed whose they are. Part of this is that our own individual, unsourced opinions don't belong in the article. If you want to write opinionl-laden material, start a blog. Opinions expressed here should be the cited opinions of people who are reasonably authoritative on the topic. Why? Because we are trying to build an encyclopedia. No one turns to the encyclopedia to find out the opinions of a bunch of random individuals. - Jmabel | Talk 22:54, 9 August 2006 (UTC)


Wikipedia makes the gossip page of Melbourne broadsheet The Age today. A minor revert war on the Sam Newman page is described as being "nail-biting stuff." Drett 17:37, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

Searchable Wikipedia FAQ

I've made a searchable repository of questions (and answers) frequently asked by newcomers to Wikipedia. It's available at It currently has 70 entries (many of the entries have been scraped off WP:FAQ and the various related pages, and some answers to the Help desk). If possible, I'd like to receive some feedback on the project, and see what people think. I'm open to suggestions on how to improve it and where to link to it. Cheers, Tangotango 18:52, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Leave your birthday messages

I'm not sure where this should go, but I'm gunna be bold and put it here anyway. A page has been created (not by me) for you to leave your birthday messages to Jimbo Wales who created the English Wikipedia. You can leave your messages here. Abstract Idiot [ TalkContribs ] 03:42, 5 August 2006 (UTC)


Progress made on deletion reason 'human dignity' as per 'Jimmy': {{Dignity}}. Hope you like! :) Red Baboons 04:01, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

Probably be a good idea to link to the discussions concerning this issue on the talk page of Template:Dignity --Stormie 04:24, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
I have deleted this template as obvious trolling, after it was added to GNAA. It claims that "It is suspected that this article may violate standards of human dignity." This is one of my rare applications of WP:IAR. -- SCZenz
Template recreated in compliance with accepted, inallienable policies. Looking into taking this to RfC. Red Baboons 23:10, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

DOPA and Wikipedia

    • Is this what you're talking about: The law is so broadly defined that it would limit access to any commercial site that allows users to create a profile and communicate with strangers? Remember, this is one person's interpretation of the proposaed act. And it does say commercial site, which Wikipedia is not. Of course, one way to be sure to avoid any problems with the proposed law would be to eliminate user pages, but I don't think we need to do anything, yet. -- Donald Albury(Talk) 14:57, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, the quotation from the bill in the Wikipedia DOPA article suggests that the broad interpretation may apply. And the "chat room" definition may also apply to Wikipedia article talk pages and discussion pages. Good point about the commercial aspect though. Bwithh 15:04, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
      • This is one for the lawyers and the ACLU, but took a closer look at the text of the bill [12] and the law its amending[13] and seeing that "commercial social networking site" and "chat room" are defined separately, I suppose an overzealous application of this act could view Wikipedia as having a chatroom function falling under the domain of this legislation, even though its non-commercial Bwithh 15:20, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
        • I think I'll leave it to the lawyers. And there's always the bright side; if all schools block WP we should see a drastic reduction in vandalism. :) -- Donald Albury(Talk) 17:03, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

Disney WikiProject proposal

A Disney WikiProject has been proposed here, interested Wikipedians need only sign their name on the list. ><Richard0612 UW 10:12, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

The Atlantic article

Historian Marshall Poe has written a long and fascinating article for The Atlantic Monthly about the history and aims of Wikipedia, titled "The Hive". It's very thoughtful and ultimately very pro-Wikipedia. It includes discussion about starting a one-line article about himself, and watching the ensuing AfD.

There are also a couple of in-depth sidebars, including "Common Knowledge", an interview with Poe about the article and Wikipedia, and "A Closer Look at the Neutral Point of View (NPOV)". — Catherine\talk 04:23, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Bot for detecting copyvios launched

Wikipedia:Suspected copyright violations is now being updated with an automated bot that attempts to identify copyright violations from newly created articles.

(Note: if this is not the appropriate place to announce this, feel free to remove this message). -- Where 23:39, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Yey! Can you follow right behind the bot that does the wikify tagging, so we don't get 1000 of those dumped on the wikifaction drive in a day? I would help a lot!!--Rayc 03:29, 30 July 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia & information quality in the Mendip Times

Perhaps not in the same league as the recent article in the New Yorker, but you may be interested in an article in the current Mendip Times (a monthly covering the Mendip Hills area of Somerset, England. You can access it at: Mendip Times but you have to click on "click here to view the magazine online" & then scroll to page 37 as it's on Macromedia Flash Paper. — Rod talk 13:34, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

More encouragement of hoax articles

According to Talk:Mini Mammoth#Article_for_Deletion the Australian DJ's Jay and the Doctor today encouraged their listeners to add a spoof article to Wikipedia. Uncle G 02:19, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

Here comes The Onion...

File:Wikipedia in The Onion 2006.jpg
On the front page, even.

Wikipedia Celebrates 750 Years Of American Independence. Better be on the lookout for new edits to the articles mentioned. -Loren 01:07, 26 July 2006 (UTC)

Pure genius... --nathanbeach 04:54, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

The New Yorker article on Wikipedia

You can read it online in its entirety for free. Here's the link for those who may not have seen it. It's in the July 31, 2006, issue, which hit the streets today. -- 20:20, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

Fabulous article! Thanks for pointing it out. — Catherine\talk 23:49, 26 July 2006 (UTC)
I agree, great article. It's a bit surprising that Schiff discusses how-to articles as if they were a characteristic part of Wikipedia, though. Apparently we need to work harder to explain and enforce WP:NOT. --Allen 05:04, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

Featured users

Wikipedia has a new featured users page, featuring Wikipedia's best contributors. If you believe you are a gooduser, please sign up to become a good featured user at Wikipedia:Featured users, cheers —Min un Spiderman 18:34, 23 July 2006 (UTC)

And I have listed it on MfD. See my reasons there. User:Zoe|(talk) 21:17, 23 July 2006 (UTC)

Some statistics

I compiled some statistics: how many articles from non-English Wikipedias are translated into English, and how many notable topics from specialized databases are covered on Wiki so far. My conclusions: there are about 2 millions articles in need of translation, and more then 400 million of specialized topics in need of creation :) See User:Piotrus/Wikipedia interwiki and specialized knowledge test for details.-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus  talk  18:38, 22 July 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia doesn't need anything like 400 million articles. Having that many would increase the housekeeping requirements by a huge multiple and the utility of the site by a small percentage. Even as it is now, the vast majority of its value lies in a few percent of the articles. Calsicol 23:59, 23 July 2006 (UTC)
the vast majority of its value lies in a few percent of the articles citation needed :D Honestly, what makes you say so? The fact that some articles are more popular or controversial does not translates directly into their utility: I 'd argue that a good entry on sociocultural evolution is more more useful then the most popular article on Wiki, a biography of GWB. By the same talken I think that the relatively not popular entries on subjects like kanclerz and Polish-Romanian Alliance, which to my knowledge are not described on any English language online pages, are of immense utility, even if only to a few people interested in those fringe topics, who likely would not be able to dig information on them (at least, not online). Therefore I would say that the vast majorit of Wikipedia lies in its highly specialzed articles on fringe topics, which hopefully will increase to 400 million the sooner the better.-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus  talk  03:39, 24 July 2006 (UTC)
I think this is absolutely right. The value of an encyclopedia is that you can go to it for anything. So, while each individual one of those 400m articles is rarely looked at, all of them together might well make up for more hits than one of our more popular articles. --best, kevin [kzollman][talk] 17:54, 24 July 2006 (UTC)
This would seem to be a Long Tail phenomenon. *Dan T.* 11:58, 27 July 2006 (UTC)

Calling all Dutch Wikipedians!

Per request of Effeietsanders, I'm inviting you to take a look at an announcement (and invitation, naturally) for a Wikimedia Conferentie Nederland! You can read more about it here: User:Effeietsanders/WCN. If this is not the best place for this kind of announcement, please let me know! Kind regards, --JoanneB 20:09, 20 July 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia mention on Colbert Report

Did anyone else notice a Wikipedia mention by Stephen Colbert a few weeks ago on his show? I can't find any reference to it in the Signpost, and I can't remember exactly when it was. Or maybe it was just a dream...? It was a satirical comment about the factuality of Wikipedia content. Nathan Beach 21:59, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

See The Colbert Report#Trivia. Margana 22:09, 10 July 2006 (UTC)
I don't know how I missed that the two times I read through the list, and even used 'Find'. Wow. Thanks! Nathan Beach 00:41, 11 July 2006 (UTC)
Sad that we're using the trivia sections of articles to include self-referential information. I wouldn't say the mention of Wikipedia is objectively any more important than the mention of anything else (such as the latest popstar). --Oldak Quill 08:01, 11 July 2006 (UTC)
I would guess out of modesty. SAMAS 02:13, 12 July 2006 (UTC)
I just watched the 13 July episode of Colbert Report and his opening dialogue ends with "Spoiler Alert! This is the Colbert Report..." Pretty funny. May not be a direct reference to wikipedia, though (we say "Spoiler Warning..."). Cheers all. Nathan Beach 20:55, 16 July 2006 (UTC)

INTA asks USPTO to ban citation to Wikipedia

The TTABLOG reports that the Commissioner of the International Trademark Association has sent a letter to the United States Patent and Trademark Office to formally request that trademark examiners be prohibited from citing Wikipedia as a source. bd2412 T 16:03, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

I suppose those applying for a trademark could edit Wikipedia to their own ends. Stable versions should prevent this kind of rejection from having to happen. --Oldak Quill 07:59, 11 July 2006 (UTC)
No need. Wikipedia isn't intended to be a primary source of information. Alan Pascoe 18:48, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

Calling all Fans of Ice Cream!

Check out the new Wikiproject Ice Cream. Tasty! --Blackjack48 18:06, 9 July 2006 (UTC)

Image namespace survey

Of images which are uploaded under fair use claims, I have found that roughly 93% of them do not comply with the simple requirements of a rationale and a source; it may be necessary to more aggressively scour the namespace. Full results at User:ESkog/ImageSurvey. (ESkog)(Talk) 06:12, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

Thanks for the link, interesting reading. It is to be expected though and the longer we allow it to continue the more danger we put ourselves in. Perhaps we should conduct a survey asking users whether they believe fair use should remain acceptable. --Oldak Quill 08:07, 11 July 2006 (UTC)

Another slow news day at Reuters apparently...

Reuters has an article concerning recent activity on the Ken Lay article: Ken Lay's death prompts confusion on Wikipedia. The article goes over the large number of changes the Ken Lay article underwent as news of his death came in. To quote the article:

The death of former Enron Corp. chief Ken Lay on Wednesday underscored the challenges facing online encyclopaedia Wikipedia (, which as the news was breaking offered a variety of causes for his death... Officials at Wikipedia did not immediately return phone and e-mail requests for comment. Its Web site warns users that "newer articles may still contain significant misinformation, unencyclopedic content, or vandalism.

In other news, the Sun rose in the east today... -Loren 22:35, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

And Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead. Tito xd(?!?) 23:54, 9 July 2006 (UTC)

This from a press group whos stories show up on google news as "UPDATE 27 Katrina.........."--mitrebox 23:17, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

This story itself got a correction from Reuters, irony apparently unintended. Ashibaka tock 01:35, 6 July 2006 (UTC)

Followup from the Washington Post: Death by Wikipedia: The Kenneth Lay Chronicles. -Loren 08:22, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

Angela Beesley has resigned from the Wikimedia board

Letter here: [14] The only other community-drawn board member Anthere recently posted a harsh essay against the policy direction of the Wikimedia board and its effective control by Wales and his Bomis friends. [15] If this crisis does not lead to greater user-input into organizational policy, Wikipedia's future is clearly in doubt. Tfine80 01:47, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

I don't have a great understanding of these issues, but your characterization of Anthere's letter seems debateable to me. She never mentions Bomis, for example. And though she personally prefers the "Community Foundation" model to the "Business Foundation" model, she says more than once that she isn't sure which would actually be best for the Foundation's goals. --Allen 02:47, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
She was upset there was no mechanism to ensure community support for future board members and stated that the apparent direction was toward even less community participation. Anthere wrote: "Our current bylaws describe a very mixed model, which has been much complained about in the past 2 years (I criticized it myself when it was originally proposed). It has 2 members elected by the community, for a limited time And 3 members, appointed by Jimbo, and permanent till they die or resign And does not limit members to 5.... but makes no mention of how increase would be done." .... "Now, imagine we add 2 famous guys. We'll have a board of 7 with 2 from the community only. Then, imagine we add 2 other big guys. The community part will be 2/9. Of course, the addition could be of 2 guys from the community. In such case, they would be appointed. What I mean to say is that in this model, the community existence would really be recognised up to 2 people, which would be elected by the community. The rest of the members would come from an internal decision. Self-appointing board... with no terms limit." To me, this seems like a fairly harsh, open criticism coming from a board member. Soon followed by the resignation of the other community board member, who expressed frustration with the organization's direction in her resignation letter, I think there is a serious problem here. Tfine80 03:56, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
Yes and no. Historicaly the community has treat board involvement as (Heh) damage and routed around it. As long as the servers keep functioning we can survive.Geni 21:52, 2 July 2006 (UTC)

My email was certainly an open criticism, but it was meant to be constructive and to inform the community of one of the many challenges the organisation is right now facing. However, your caracterization of "Bomis friends" is definitly debateable. Only one board member is a Bomis person (Tim Shell). He is imho a kind person and I look forward seeing him again at Wikimania this summer. This said, he is not really active on the board and would qualify as a "friend". He will resign from the board in the next few months. Michael has never worked for Bomis (he is involved in Wikia), he is definitly involved in all financial issues and is a great help in running the project from an administrative point of view. I certify that he is a free mind, and vote/participate as an independant human. Angela is not on Bomis, but working for Wikia.

Whatever the direction the Foundation takes (Business-like or Community-like), I do not think Wikipedia's future is at stake. What is more at stake from my perspective is whether we'll become a global organisation or a local US-based, US-driven organisation. And whether we'll focus in becoming more a political strength (with lawyers on the board to work on free licences in our rich-world) or a charitable one (trying to disseminate knowledge everywhere). And whether we'll just become a Foundation supporting financially and technically our projects, or something so much more exciting, with multiple projects and dreams we could hope to become true.

This is, imho, what is JUST at stake now.

Anthere 18:15, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

Your mention of Wikimania, Anthere, raises a question: will the matter of the Foundation's direction be discussed at Wikimania -- or any Foundation matters? I looked over the schedule, but didn't see any mention of this. -- llywrch 17:05, 5 July 2006 (UTC)
There's a Board panel planned, but that'll probably be more of a general Q&A session rather than a serious discussion of the future of the Foundation. Rumor has it some meetings are planned for August 7th after Wikimania, but there's no agenda for that as yet. Angela . 13:19, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

I'm happy to see some interest in Foundation matters here on Wikipedia. The main place to discuss these issues is foundation-l. I would like to encourage everyone here to make their voices heard in the debates about openness and participation that are going to happen in the coming months. I personally believe in a model where the Board is community-elected (my favorite idea is that of a "Magnificent Seven", with 4 community-elected people, Jimmy, and 2 appointed experts), and that there should be an additional Advisory Board of experts who have no legal authority, but who are consulted frequently. However, if the community wants to see that happen, it needs to get involved!

Those who care about the organizational side of things should start by reading the article about the Wikimedia Foundation and closely studying and watching the Foundation Website. Board Resolutions (such as the decision to hire Brad Patrick as Interim Executive Director and Legal Counsel) are published there. Also study the Foundation bylaws, and read past debates in the foundation-l archives, such as the important debate started by Anthere, linked to above. If you need more pointers to reading material, leave a note on my talk page and I'll be happy to give you a few links.

If you would like to get involved in actual Foundation work, apply for membership in the Wikimedia committees. It is my personal belief that this structure in particular needs some reform to guarantee transparency and participation. I've been pushing for this in the past, however, my experience has been very disheartening -- there is very little interest from the community in those matters, and the debates tend to be dominated by those who have shaped the structures as they exist today. One recently formed committee which is fairly open is the Fundraising committee -- we need volunteers, so please do sign up on the page if you think you can make a meaningful contribution to this topic.

Angela has been a voice for the community for two years. Her departure in particular makes it important that more people join the activities of the organization. Why is it important? Because Wikimedia is more than just a hosting service for the projects. We have the potential to build hundreds or even thousands of partnerships with educational institutions, with charitable organizations, and (within reasonable limits), with for-profits -- especially to bootstrap our existing projects like Wikinews and Wikibooks. For instance, there are thousands of local "citizen radio" projects around the world which are now starting to take notice of the Internet. If we play our cards right, we can position Wikinews so that it becomes part of a global movement to create local "media centers" -- not institutions of propaganda, but of free content news and original reporting. There is huge interest in Wikibooks, and we need to get academia involved in order to provide free educational resources to poor people. We need a nice DVD version of the English Wikipedia, we need evolution of our software such as Multilingual MediaWiki or m:InstantCommons or WiktionaryZ, we need better methods to distinguish trusted users from untrusted ones, and, and, and ... And as Anthere writes above, we need an international organization that truly promotes the ideals of Wikimedia on a global scale. In matters which are fairly clearly in our interest, Wikimedia can also join political initiatives, such as a reduction of international copyright terms (currently life of the author + 70 years).

All of this requires an organization with strong community leadership in order to get off the ground. If the Wikimedia Foundation continues to operate as it does today, it will be succesful at keeping things running, which is good. But in order to move things forward, we need far more involvement from the level of the Wikimedia projects and languages.--Eloquence * 23:30, 7 July 2006 (UTC)

Trigger Happy

Dear Wikipedians: I, like you, am an editor; I create articles and make edits. But, many, I am sure many other people out there, are tired, frustrated and angry with the behavior of many Administrators. I am certain that it is appallingly easy to revert an article that someone has undoubtedly spent a lot of time and effort writing. I have, in the past, spent hours researching, planning, writing, checking and revising an addition to an article only to have the whole lot deleted forever three minutes afterwards.

I know that deletion of material is essential in a free-to-edit encyclopedia, but if you see an article that someone has anonymously devoted their time to writing, why could you not revise it, change it or give a reason for your action? They deserve one.

I know all Administrators are not all Drunk-With-Power-Trigger-Happy-Nazis, many of you do an excellent job and you know who you are.

In closing: Create, don’t Destroy. Make a distinction between “what is right, and what is easy”. Be enriched and enrich others with the knowledge of other people.

And keep that finger off the trigger.

(If I don't cop flack for this one, I will climb the Reichtag Bulding in a Spiderman outfit).

Dfrg.msc 07:20, 29 June 2006 (UTC)

You said it brother!!!! :This is becoming a very serious problem. I ask everyone to think that for each article that is simply deleted out of hand there is one person who leaves with a negative opinion of Wikipedia, perhaps even more than one. Recently I had to spend hours to save a entry for an established artist collective in Chicago. An editor decided that an artist collective of 3 core members was not worth Wikipedias time. Days later, after hours of research on my part it turned out that the editor had been to one of their shows and was a big fan of their work. He rudely stated that it was my fault for not including everything they had ever done without showing any sign of almost having deleted something without following up on it himself.:I think it is important that editors remember that most people are rather busy, and don't have hundreds of hours to make everything entirely wikied. Also Wikipedia in its current structure is highly biased towards science, sci fi, popular culutre and pornography and lacks enough in public service, education, arts, and culture. Contributions in this area are going to come from people who will take longer to understand the conventions and tags used in Wikipedia. Deleting for poor tagging will only insure that most people go away with a sense that Wikipedia is just an encyclopedia for comic book guy.--Rhooker1236 21:36, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
Seconded! Dfrg.msc 10:42, 9 July 2006 (UTC)
Can you give an example? Graham 19:58, 13 July 2006 (UTC)
Just go to the to delete page for a few days and watch the flow of NON, NOPV, Sockpuppet and insults that more and more is becoming the public face of the inner working of Wikipedia.
OK, I did. I didn't see any deletes that weren't pretty well justified and explained in very clear terms. I saw no insults from admins, unless you count being called out for bias as an insult. Graham 19:22, 19 July 2006 (UTC) As a P.S., please sign your comments.
Wikipedia has gotten big enough and serious enough that it is time to start thinking about governance.
I propose some form of Statement of Rights for Users, and Statement of Rights for Editors. The idea is that a meaningful statement of the Rights of Users based upon the interests of Users be the governing policy. An article should only be deleted if it violates the Rights of Users, and no other reason. Editors rights should be respected and only over-ruled if they violate the rights of Users.
This model, I feel, will stop much of the abuse of people giving each other medals for making DeleteBots that recieve so many complaints that they are clearly buggy, or academic departments being deleted followed by a long line of insults to the people in the department. Pretty dumb if Wikipedia is going to contain all human knowledge.
The most important result of a change of focus from the will of admins to the rights of users would be, I would hope, and end to this idiotic jargon that admins banter about. Most people find it very difficult to understand why an article is being deleted, many deletes are full of jargon with some insults here and there. When a typical user tries to respond to defend what they, in good faith, believe to be significant starting point for future knowledge strucutures they also find themselves being corrected for endless ettiguete violations in the pointless Miss Manners that Wikipeida administrative discourse often collapses in to. --Rhooker1236 11:29, 15 July 2006 (UTC)
Jargon is a pejorative only to people outside the endeavor. You can find descriptions of all the jargon, insider terms, and so on, very easily. I'm pretty new to this, too, and often baffled by the language, but I can always find it in the help pages. If editors tried to spell out all the concepts that can be abbreviated (WP:NPOV, for example), they'd be a lot less efficient. Graham 19:22, 19 July 2006 (UTC)

Arbcom elections 2006

The page for candidate statements is now open but elections are not for anther 2 months so no need to hurry:

Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Elections/December 2006/Candidate statements

Geni 00:06, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

Tell the Wikitruth

Once you've read Wikiruth, it's hard to think of Wikipedia as anything other than an autistic care group for the obese and the underemployed. - Andrew Orlowski, The Register [16]

Oh yeah, 'n Sanger is no Super-Sales Wales, never mind Citizendium is the lamest name ever. I mean, what is with the friggin' Latin thing anyway? edia-endium my Aunty Fanny :) Wyss 19:31, 24 September 2006 (UTC)

well there is no question that jimbo has proved himself to be an impressively good PR guy but Sanger knows how to create a buzz at least.Geni 01:23, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Did Orlowski have a Wikipedia editor jilt him at the altar or something? The guy's rather fixated on anything he can possibly find to criticize Wikipedia over. *headshake* Tony Fox (arf!) 01:41, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
"Autistic care group"? That's definitely a new one.
One could say the same thing about blogs like Orlowski's, but it's not worth it. The bottom line is... who cares? If you think WP is full of lies and is edited by obese, underemployed autistic people, either ignore it or help fix it. I hardly think it's influential enough to justify hand-wringing. --zenohockey 02:51, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Fix it? Wikipedia is very inefficient for most editors except in the most obscure articles. As a result, many get sucked into the "social-community/bureaucracy" aspects. As I and many others have noted elswhere, Wikipedia is a helpful notion but its current implementation, popular though it may be, is but an alphabetized meta-blog and online social community. I have better things to do with my life than collaborate with sock puppets and cranks. It took me around 14,000 edits to understand how much time I was truly wasting, though I did learn something about online social communities and collaboration schemes. :) Wyss 11:57, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Pfft... This link just goes to show that some trolls have journalism careers. Laugh at it for the comedy it is and move on. Durova 17:39, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Wikipedia's systemic flaws as an encyclopedia are widely documented. However, if one wishes to participate in an alphabetized meta-blog/online social community with a Byzantine bureaucracy which encourages sock puppets, trolls and endless references to pop culture beliefs which have naught to do with scholarship, yeah, then "pfft," I think, would be the appropriate response to any criticism that Wikipedia is not an encyclopedia. Wyss 17:50, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Reading the above, one becomes curious as to just why, if, in your words, "I have better things to do with my life than collaborate with sock puppets and cranks," you're hanging around and "wasting your time" providing editorial comment on the whole thing with us "sockpuppets and cranks" then? Tony Fox (arf!) 20:04, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
[17], [18]. ;) Durova 22:07, 25 September 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, anything to avoid discussing the systemic issues: Attack me instead, since it takes no thought and makes you look like a defender of the faith to whomever it is you want community support from. I came to write enyclopedia articles and left because I couldn't without wasting 95% of my time on other codswallop. Tell the Wikitruth indeed. :) Wyss 10:35, 26 September 2006 (UTC)
In the United States, we have this volunteer program where groups sign up to pick up litter along various segments of the public highways. And most of the criticism I've read from folks like Wikitruth & Orlowski is the same as criticizing these groups because the labor they're volunteering is "not really helping society". I guess that they lie awake all night worrying that we might actually be getting some satisfaction from our contributions to Wikipedia, & are doing their damnedest to prevent that from ever happening. -- llywrch 21:45, 29 September 2006 (UTC)
I think you have it backwards. Wikipedia generates the litter, lots of it. Think of Wikipedia as a drunken lout speeding down the "information superhighway" tossing all kinds of sundry codswallop out the car window for others to pick up after. Lots of its dodgy content gets picked up by scraper sites, the Google bots and others, hence multiplying the trash and by the bye, last I heard, littering was a crime in the states (sometimes a serious one). Meanwhile the well-meaning Wikipedia volunteers who try to clean up after Wikipedia's "dark side" generate even more traffic for the site, enhancing its popularity and contributing to Mr Wales' ability to raise millions of dollars for Wikipedia's commercial spin-off Wikia: Their time is utterly wasted in an editorial sense, since Wikipedia's systemic flaws are easily correctible, but nonetheless very helpful in helping Mr Wales with his wider goals (whatever they may be). Wyss 17:53, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
You've made your position clear. The only point unclear is why you are still participating here -- since you despise Wikipedia so much. -- llywrch 19:12, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
Uhm, so please cite a diff which shows me saying I "despise" Wikipedia. Meanwhile, could you paraphrase what you think my "position" is, so I can get some sort of notion as to how clear I've made it to you? Thanks. Wyss 20:09, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
  • "Think of Wikipedia as a drunken lout speeding down the 'information superhighway' tossing all kinds of sundry codswallop out the car window for others to pick up after."
  • You repeat Orlowski's quote that appears at the top of this thread on your user page & at the talk of your Talk page.
  • As for diffs, I found this was clearly not intended as a compliment.
I found these contirbutions insulting -- to me & to everyone involved with Wikipedia.If you have specific criticisms about how it works or what appears here, state them & if you are convincing, we'll act on them. If you don't like Wikipedia, no one is forcing you to use it. But if you hang around Wikipedia just to tell us how much it sucks, then don't be surprised if someone concludes that you're just another troll & blocks you. -- llywrch 23:47, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
Or just refused to feed him. Robert A.West (Talk) 23:51, 30 September 2006 (UTC)
So let me get this straight, my request to cite where I said I "despise" Wikipedia is ãnswered with the Orlowski quote and a bit of pithy but constructive criticism by yours truly? Followed by a thinly veiled accusation of trollery and an open threat to block? Never mind I'm not the one who responded with "pffft" or whatever.
Meanwhile my request that you paraphrase your understanding of my "position" (as you put it) went wholly unanswered, which to me is a hint that you either don't know or don't care. If it's the latter, what are you doing participating in this conversation? All I did was post the Orlowski item and subsequently respond to comments. I do sincerely apologize if someone has taken any of this as an insult. I was rather hoping it might make someone think.
Anyway I never said I despised Wikipedia. If you have interpreted my comments in this thread as such, you're mistaken. Nor am I "hand wringing." Wyss 13:49, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
You say that Wikipedia is broken and beyond fixing. Yet you bother to post here, deploring the state of affairs. That is hand-wringing by definition. People don't show up to proclaim the worthlessness and irredeemability of something unless they have come to despise it. If you want to shake the electrons of Wikipedia from your fingertips, please do so and leave those of us who care about the project to do our best, succeed or fail. Robert A.West (Talk) 15:35, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
I never "proclaimed" that Wikipedia is "worthless" and "irredeemable," not even close. Please stop mis-representing (or mis-understanding and then attempting to characterize, inaccurately) my remarks, thanks.
I care about Wikipedia and think it is a worthwhile project with some systemic flaws which are "redeemable" (more or less easily fixed). Until that happens though, Wikipedia could further degenerate into a mega-traffic, snipe-festing, alphabetized meta-blog and social community/online game more akin to a MUD than an encyclopedia. Wyss 15:47, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
Well, you did call it a "drunken lout"... I guess that's not "irredeemable", so can you perhaps suggest an appropriate 12-step program it can enroll in? *Dan T.* 16:09, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
As an editor I made more than 14,000 edits, learning along the way Mr Wales knows spot on that Wikipedia's pop-culture and online role-playing opportunities "sell" (create mass-market level traffic and media buzz) whilst scholarship and peer review (as with Nupedia) do not. Can reliable, scholarly encyclopedia content be efficiently created through wiki-enabled online collaboration? Yes. Out of over a million Wikipedia articles, thousands (perhaps a few percent) are helpfully written and sourced. Meanwhile there is no problem solving "12-step" program available to any editor so long as Wikipedia's very highest leadership unilaterally continues to follow an unscholarly but far more profitable "meta-blog/MUD" model of encyclopedia building. Wyss 16:46, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
This is the first time I have heard of WikiTruth. I just read about Wikipedia:Publicgirluk photo debate, and it made me ill and a little embarassed to be a part of Wikipedia. I just put a project together to keep comics article editors from getting burned out, but this may have done me in. Ugh. --Chris Griswold () 15:11, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
Publicgirluk was obviously a hoax/trolling event. What I found so unhelpful and unencyclopedic was:
  • The content ever made it onto Wikipedia to begin with.
  • Wikipedians asked the "female editor" to pose for additional pictures, through what amounted to coercion and inappropriate pressure, never mind their dodgy motives. It amounted to trolls trolling trolls.
  • When the inappropriate and clearly unencyclopedic material showed up, Wikipedia was wholly unable to deal with it through its own deeply flawed due process, which was circumvented anyway by Mr Wales after immature-seeming, utterly agog and way-too-overly-excited editors and admins wasted far too much time going on about it. Wyss 17:45, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
So, what is your recommendation? Or even an idea that might lead to one? Absent that, you are just hand-wringing. Robert A.West (Talk) 18:50, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
Since you seem to have missed it (why are you so obsessed with labeling me a "hand wringer" anyway), a few posts up, I'll copy paste it down here for you:
As an editor I made more than 14,000 edits, learning along the way Mr Wales knows spot on that Wikipedia's pop-culture and online role-playing opportunities "sell" (create mass-market level traffic and media buzz) whilst scholarship and peer review (as with Nupedia) do not. Can reliable, scholarly encyclopedia content be efficiently created through wiki-enabled online collaboration? Yes. Out of over a million Wikipedia articles, thousands (perhaps a few percent) are helpfully written and sourced. Meanwhile there is no problem solving "12-step" program available to any editor so long as Wikipedia's very highest leadership unilaterally continues to follow an unscholarly but far more profitable "meta-blog/MUD" model of encyclopedia building. Wyss 18:57, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
All of which is just meaningless rhetoricizing. Yay. Can you say that again in English, please?
Why is this on the news section of the pump anyway? It should be under misc. or, if you actually have some sort of real solution you suggest, proposals --tjstrf 19:03, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
This page is for discussion of news. Given this discussion has moved far from the original topic, please consider taking it elsewhere. Any specific proposals can be discussed at Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals). Current and proposed policies can be discussed at Wikipedia:Village pump (policy). Warofdreams talk 19:04, 1 October 2006 (UTC)
Unbelievable. Bye. Wyss 19:17, 1 October 2006 (UTC)

Phishing or real

Does anyone know if this email I got is legit or phishing? (no I haven't responded to it)....

"Dear Rlevse,

We are conducting a study of people's motivations for writing and editing in Wikipedia.

We would be extremely grateful if you could help us by filling out the questionnaire at - it should take no longer than 10-15 minutes. The questionnaire is anonymous and your responses will be used for research purposes only.

We would be happy to share our findings with you, which will be made available online once we complete the data collection and analysis.

With many thanks!

Dr. Oded Nov, Polytechnic University, New York onov at poly dot edu"

Rlevse 22:09, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

  • It looks like a legitimate survey to me, and the name appears on Brooklyn Polytechnic's faculty list as an assistant professor of management. If you are suspicious but interested, try answering from a public library without logging onto Wikipedia, so there are no cookies to pick up, and don't give any personally identifiable information. Robert A.West (Talk) 23:20, 5 October 2006 (UTC)

Page views

I just wanted to point out a tool that I ran across on :FR. It lists the most-viewed articles and works on many different language wikipedias. Check it out. --Zantastik talk 22:37, 4 October 2006 (UTC)

Censorship in Singapore?

Per a discussion in #wikipedia-en: Certain pages on Malayasian subjects on enwp were recently discovered to be inaccessable from at least one ISP (, such as (not a full list):

Some things to note about these:

  1. The page can be viewed by changing the url slightly: such as encoding a few characters in hexidecimal, or using the history to find an oldid, or using a google cache.
  2. The same pages with the same content are also accessable on other wikis, making this seem suspiciously targeted if it is indeed censorship.
  3. The pages above with parenthesis are only blocked if the url contains the parentheses, the wikilinks above to the articles apparently work fine, indicating it is only google links (which use literal parentheses in the url) that are targeted.
  4. These return (when failing) a connection timeout or blank page. This is in contrast to other blocked internet sites, such as pornography, which will return a message such as "The site you requested is not accessible. For more information please check Media Development Authority."
  5. Doesn't seem blocked on Pacific Net?
Test results on [[Malaysian_Malaysia]]



Also accessable (nonexistant/other):

Can any other Singapore users verify or deny this? (Move this to the appropriate VP section if misposted, but this seemed like news) --Splarka (rant) 00:25, 4 October 2006 (UTC) (I am not in Signapore, but am posting this on behalf of a wp user who is)


I submitted Jimbo's $100 million inquiry to Slashdot today. Seems to have provoked quite a discussion. The meta discussion page is seeing a lot of traffic (someone might want to keep an eye on it). BrokenSegue 00:30, 23 October 2006 (UTC)

Oh dear. Jimbo is going to gain a reputation as a cock tease. :-( lots of issues | leave me a message 05:39, 23 October 2006 (UTC)

Study for finding related articles

Colleagues of mine are doing some evaluation of a technique that they propose for finding "related articles" in Wikipedia. Please consider answering their page. David.Monniaux 13:20, 21 October 2006 (UTC)

Interesting project. The biggest problem with them that I see is that some of the methods prioritize date or country articles rather than those which are from the same categories, or on a similar subject matter. e.g. according to one of the methods, the closest related article to 1989 was 1912, followed by 1990, 1988, United States, 1992, etc. and only much further down the list did things like the Berlin wall show up. --tjstrf Now on editor review! 22:52, 21 October 2006 (UTC)
More details and evaluation results will be published on in a few weeks. Thanks to all for your participation, and feel free to contact me if you have any question! --PierreSenellart 15:52, 22 October 2006 (UTC)

Male Domination?

During my time on English Wikipedia, I’ve come to realize just how male dominated it is (I myself am male). Seriously, how many Wikipedians are female? If these legendary creatures do exist, they would be classified as “rare and endangered”. But perhaps they are more common than I think, as it is difficult to tell and we tend to assume the user is male. But I digress; Female Wikipedians are few and far between. Unfortunately - we need Female Wikipedians, to continue effectively as an encyclopedia, as they can offer insights that males cannot. Male/female insights and interest differ radically. Compare:

The truth lies within the Article quality. How can we overcome this?

If I am wrong, and every second editor is female – correct me. I also apologize for stereotyping and generalizing. I am also unsure of how Wikipedia’s Homosexual community rates i

--Michael Van Locke 03:24, 10 October 2006 (UTC)Men dominate the world, it is only natural that women are prejudiced against in Wikipedia. History is literally HIS story of the world. I think that he should include HERstory too. It is the greatest story never told. Wikipedia can help bringHERstoryto the eyes of the public! --Michael Van Locke 03:24, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

User:Dfrg.msc File:DFRG. MSC.jpg 06:58, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

I do feel rather stereotyped and generalized by the selection of articles you feel I should be editing. Do you want me to be barefoot, pregnant, and in the kitchen as well? --Serie 08:13, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
But wait, according to Plato and Jung, among others, we have a male side and a female side, each of us. This is well-known to those who uphold the ideas of yang and yin. Perhaps it is merely a matter of considering NPOV when writing. And, those who seek their "other side" might even become more sensitive to the views of "the other" in their relationships. A win-win situation. --Ancheta Wis 09:15, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

Yes, the examples picked were stereotyped, but I believe the point holds. The very fact that a man trying to make the point picked these examples speaks volumes. Male contributors, even well intentioned ones, often don't know what topics women are likely to want to read or write about. The gender imbalance results one of the more significant unintended biases of Wikipedia. - Jmabel | Talk 22:47, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

No offense, but I was just wondering what this discussion could possibly achieve. --Nscheffey(T/C) 00:49, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

Some issues are easy to address. Look for false assumptions that all people are men (e.g. by searching text for 'he', 'him', and 'his'). See an example edit. bobblewik 16:44, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
This isn't an "issue". When gender is unspecified, it is accepted in English grammar to use the masculine pronoun. It's arbitrary; it doesn't imply everyone is male. ~ Booya Bazooka 14:26, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
"Accepted" is rather overstating the case. It is traditional, and is accepted by some people, while being opposed by others and now uncommon. See also grammatical gender. Warofdreams talk 16:43, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

Maybe wikipedian women just have better taste than the music and clothing you've picked. soccer is BY FAR more popular than netball. I think I know just as many women who listen to system of a down as men. your point is probably true in anycase, but by stereo typing what men and women are interested in, you're probably making the problem WORSE, not better. perhaps you should be looking more at truly gender specific topics, such as erectile disfunction Vs breast cancer. personally, I can't see any solution anyway... hey, wait! why don't we change the theme colours of wikipedia from blue to pink! --naught101 23:15, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

I suspect this has more to do with presumptions than anything else. Despite my username's derivation from the first female officer of the Russian army, and a statement at the top of my userpage to that effect (including a portrait), when other editors refer to me by a personal pronoun it's usually "he." I've created nine new warfare categories and quite a few military articles, but have yet to edit Madonna. Maybe I should change my username to G.I. Barbie. Durova 04:36, 23 August 2006 (UTC):

The gender of people from nationalities other than European/American may not be obvious to Europeans and Americans. Most people get MY gender wrong, even though I'm here under my given name. (PS: this seems to be catching, because now at least one South Asian has got it wrong as well. How mortifying.) The gender imbalance is probably going to change in the future. I suspect many women edit without logging in, as they may not necessarily want to have to deal with user talk and community stuff as well as simple edits. I used to do that before I created a user ID. PS I'd also like to say that all your examples are very occidental. I have played and liked Half Life (not 2, it hasn't come to these shores yet) but neither Prada nor netball have any associations for me. Nor does Madonna. --Rimi 13:14, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

I'm guessing that this topic has already been much discussed and researched on WP:BIAS. nadav 08:17, 30 August 2006 (UTC)

  1. I am a female.
  2. It is super-easy for people to deduce that from my username (but I don't mind).
  3. I've never been a Madonna fan and would rather eat my own vomit than listen to En Vogue ripoff artistes Destiny's Child.
  4. I like soccer.
  5. I could give a rat's arse about Prada or most any other big-name designer. Exceptions are Ralph Lauren and any of the Kahn & Bell-style New Romantic designers, but the former is due to his egalitarian designs and the latter is due to my overall interest in that whole scene/genre (and the only "name" in the whole scene was Antony Price anyway).
  6. I've never really thought about any apparent male "bias" here on Wikipedia.
  7. I do enjoy hammering a point home so many times the poor point has got no actual point to it.
  8. BTW, something I WAS interested enough in to try to create a new article for is the fantastic group the Scars, which has since been contributed to by at least one other person. (Yay!) It certainly ain't no Destiny's Child-type thing. And I like that. ;)
  9. I'll go now. I promise. (Krushsister 02:50, 2 September 2006 (UTC))

  • Yes, the examples picked were stereotyped, but I believe the point holds. The very fact that a man trying to make the point picked these examples speaks volumes. Male contributors, even well-intentioned ones, often don't know what topics women are likely to want to read or write about. The gender imbalance results one of the more significant unintended biases of Wikipedia. - Jmabel | Talk 22:47, 9 August 2006 (UTC) . Yes! he (or she) gets it! This is what I am on about! Dfrg.msc 1 . 2 . 3 22:57, 8 September 2006 (UTC)
Don't you see that that mindset just perpetuates stereotypes? As a woman, I do not think I have distinctly different tastes in articles I like to read than any man. I like to read about sports, construction, books, mathematical concepts, people, etc. I like to pull from a wide variety of knowledge and learn about many different things. Any differences that do occur in male/female tastes of article reading etc. are only a result of socialization. Ex: maybe more women read about "beauty" because they grow up thinking this is a higest good. Although, lately it seems more pressure is put on males to be attractive as well, so perhaps they read about beauty, just the same. Who knows - there is no clear brightline. The point is that this is silly. It's ridiculous to think we should write articles thinking "ahh this is an article men will be interested in reading" or "ahh this is an article women will be interested in reading." By saying: "Male contributors, even well-intentioned ones, often don't know what topics women are likely to want to read or write about" --- you are just perpetuating stereotypes. Gender is a social construct. Sex (anatomical differences) do exist, but gender, does not. (Or at least, is very questionable and insubstantial). Information should not be gendered. Free knowledge.
  • One of our most prodigious and esteemed contributers, User:SlimVirgin, is a woman. Batmanand | Talk 11:30, 11 September 2006 (UTC)
    Have you read our article on tokenism?
    OK, quite separately from the sort of list User:Dfrg.msc presented, feminism is tremendously under-covered—a topic that may not be a uniquely female concern, but it is hard to imagine it would be so neglected if Wikipedians were 50% women. Some glaring examples are that the articles on Mary Daly and Ti-Grace Atkinson are little more than stubs, as is women's studies. I'm not saying all women are interested in these topics. I am saying that most of the people interested in these topics are women, and that the relative absence of women is probably why these topics are being shortchanged. In general, articles on women are shortchanged. Until I got to it, the article on Marie of Edinburgh (Queen Marie of Romania) focused almost entirely on where she fit the British Royal Family; it didn't even mention that she represented Romania at Versailles after World War I; and it still doesn't say a third of what it should say about someone who was arguably the most politically powerful woman in Europe in her time (I can't think who else would have been a contender). - Jmabel | Talk 06:05, 19 September 2006 (UTC)

I have come across a strange statistic recently, apperently the amount of IT Consultant's nowaday's employed, roughly 60% are male and the rest of the percentage (40%) are female. Now it also states that the amount of employed female Consultant's is growing. The thing is though, i have noticed a more female based subject at academic level that is web design and media. The other subject's such as networking & programming tend to be more male based. I suspect that Wikipedia number of user's could be evident of this, and i beleive the ratio to be somewhat similiar to the IT Consultancy figure. The answer is yes female user's are amongst us. I have noticed from my personal experience, women can be quite creative and effienct in thier task's where as men take a logical approach. Again both genda's can have these both trait's and are not limited to one or if two at that.

Anti argumentum ad hominem 05:04, 25 September 2006 (UTC)

Am I the only one who finds the above post (and to some extent this thread) disconcerting? If there's one consistent point voiced by the self-identified female contributors here, it's Don't pigeonhole me. Yet the responses - from apparently sincere and well-meaning men - tend back toward pigeonholes. So let's turn the tables: look at Sylvester Stallone, War, and Baldness. Those articles aren't in fantastic shape either. I might even wonder whether enough men edit Wikipedia if it weren't for a fairly good piece about Viagra. Durova 00:28, 2 October 2006 (UTC)
Remote control is good, too - and belching. Obviously lots of guys here. - DavidWBrooks 00:41, 2 October 2006 (UTC)
Also, it seem obvious to me that Wiki is dominated by liberals. Rlevse 22:07, 5 October 2006
depends on where you come from, I suppose. Probably, if you are Attila the Hun or a die-hard fascist. Otherwise, it is my impression that nationalist-conservative crackpots simply flock to the articles on their respective ethnicities like fleas to the carcass. dab () 15:42, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

I agree with NScheffey - I fail to see any purpose of this discussion. Let's examine the facts: 1. Wikipedia has, as of this moment, 2,502,620 editors. 2. Of those 2,502,620 of editors, 100% are volunteers (unless I missed the article about indentured servitude among Wiki members). 3. Of the volunteers, some unknown, but (let's assume) high percentage are male. Assuming we accept these facts, what exactly are we supposed to do about it? I see several possibilities: 1. Assume a sexist bias on Wikipedia. OK, considering fact #3, this seems fairly obvious, but only if we accept the (as yet unjustified) premise that all men are naturally sexist. But I don't accept this. To assume that all males naturally write sexist articles is as bad as assuming all women are interested in Prada and cooking. Let's give our male editors a little credit for putting their brains ahead of their testosterone. But, even if this isn't true, I go back to fact #2 and ask, what are you going to do about it? I know, we can have a new guideline stating that all articles must be reviewed by a female - but wait, that would be sexist, and also untenable. 2. Get more women to be editors. But refer to fact #2 - what are you going to do, institute a bizarre internet version of the draft? Should we force women to write for Wikipedia? Oh I know, we can start a corporation of women writers who are paid to write articles... no, the idea paid writers has already been shut down. 3. Sit around as a bunch of men and make ourselves feel better. "Wow, we're a pretty sexist crowd! Gosh, that stinks. OK, let's get back to editing." Oh wait, that's what we're doing... Bottom line: even if you accept the assumption that Wikipedia is sexist (I don't), I fail to see any reasonable solution. Roachmeister 12:06, 17 October 2006 (UTC)

History literally means His story?

History literally means His story? Even if English were the only language in the world, that wouldn't be taken very seriously. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Toomanyprotestsingers (talkcontribs)

I think the comment above was polemic, not an actual claim of the word's etymology. dab () 15:39, 10 October 2006 (UTC)
You never can tell. Amueter etymologists come up with the most bizarre claims -- false etymology has a few good examples. --Carnildo 19:19, 10 October 2006 (UTC)
When I was in high school (in the mid-western United States) there was a black boy who absolutely refused to take a history class because, as he said, "It's HIS story, the white man's story. It's not my story. It's right there in the word." Of course, history being a required subject, they would always enroll him in one, but he never attended them. He got good grades in his other classes too. However, never getting any history credits meant he couldn't graduate. Just another example of the strange ideas that some people cling to for all they're worth. ~ ONUnicorn (Talk / Contribs) 19:26, 10 October 2006 (UTC)
Only if you're Michael Jackson :P Glen 12:17, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

Great Firewall of China unblocks WP?

I'm in China and Wikipedia has been inaccessible here for a year or so. Today I followed a link and noticed it led to WP and it worked.

Of course, there's no guarantee it will last. Pashley 05:35, 10 October 2006 (UTC)

The English language wiki is available, but the Chinese language wiki is blocked, at least in Shenzhen. m.e. 09:28, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

I take it this is a change from the past year. Are other languages available? German (de), Japanese (ja), Korean (ko)? -R. S. Shaw 21:06, 14 October 2006 (UTC)
There have been a lot of news stories in the last couple of days about this. Apparently the Chinese language Wikipedia is still blocked in China but they're allowing in other language editions. Durova 01:38, 15 October 2006 (UTC)
de, jp and kr are available. m.e. 09:19, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Freedom of speech on the Internet

On november 7/8, Reporters without Borders is organizing a day against Internet censorship. Unfortunately, Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects are censored by various governments (in particular, the People's Republic of China censors us off and on). David.Monniaux 08:52, 3 November 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia in the News - Telegraph magazine

Wikipedia is the subject in a multi-page feature article in the Telegraph magazine, the saturday supplement to The Daily Telegraph, a British broadsheet. The article "Wiki's World" by Mick Brown appears in the October 28 2006 of the Telegraph magazine and features illustrations by Brett Ryder. The article starts off with Wikipedia history and goes onto to explore the many facets of Wikipedia, elaborating on NPOV disputes, Wikipedia bureaucracy (admins, bureaucrats, mediation cabal, arbcom etc) and Wikipedia's drive for quality. The author also speaks to Jimbo Wales, Danny Wool, David Gerard and William Connolley about various Wikipedia aspects. Users mentioned directly in the article are User:SimonP and User:Lord Emsworth. There's also a picture of Jimbo in a god-king style pose, although it's not as good as this classic.

If you would like a copy of this article, I can provide scans. You either need to drop off your email address on my talk-page or use Wikipedia email to contact me. - Hahnchen 00:37, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

User:ALoan has kindly found the online version (I didn't know they did these) - here. The print article features decoration illustrations and a different photograph of Jimbo. - Hahnchen 04:27, 31 October 2006 (UTC)

external review by The Chronicle of Higher Education

The Chronicle of Higher Education has an article in which they got three professors to grade an article in the specialty. Please see the the subpage at Wikipedia:External peer review and help fix identified concerns. - BanyanTree 15:41, 24 October 2006 (UTC)

Wondering if everyone has seen the article about wikipedia in the Chronicle of Higher Education. If not, here it is [19]. Kukini 21:08, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

A new claim for Wikipedia

I just found this item thru Google New's service. According to Lucia Bill, writing in the Arizona State University's student website, The Web Devil, "it is a well-known fact that if you cannot find it on, your prospects are not looking up." Wow. I never knew all of my roughed-out articles on local districts in Ethiopia were helping college students from being flunked out of school. ;-) -- llywrch 05:10, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

If it isn't on wikipedia it is likely hard to find on the net and few other places offer such a convenient summary.Geni 01:18, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

Wikimania 2007 Team Bulletin

Published by the Wikimania 2007 Taipei Team, Wikimania 2007 Team Bulletin provides the latest news of the Team's organizing work to everyone who is interested in Wikimania; it also gives the Team chances to announce calls for help/participation, so assistance in human and other resources can be sought in a wider range. Team Bulletin is published at the official website of Wikimania 2007 and released to the public domain. Issue 1 and Issue 2 has already published.-- 00:50, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

Dan Savage aids Wikipedia research

In his latest column of Savage Love, the venerable Dan Savage provides much needed information about the Donkey Punch. AxelBoldt 22:39, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

It gave me a chuckle, but...oh dear... Durova 15:21, 27 October 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia in The Onion

From The Onion, 10/31/06 8:07 AM:

"KITTERY, ME—Even after spending 18 hours on Wikipedia, area resident Matt Alpert had to admit to himself that he was still nowhere near having a firm grasp on the continuity of the DC Comics Multiverse."

--John Nagle 08:07, 2 November 2006 (UTC)

I can't find it; link? --Chris Griswold () 08:47, 2 November 2006 (UTC)

Again? They love us. I don't see it either though... what category is the article under? --tjstrf Now on editor review! 09:02, 2 November 2006 (UTC)

"National News Highlights" in the lower right hand column of the home page. You have to mouse over the Maine dot. - BanyanTree 17:32, 2 November 2006 (UTC)
Haha. Yep. It's like that up in Maine. -Monk of the highest order 00:42, 6 November 2006 (UTC)

Wikimedia logo mosaic

The source image.
Image before folks added more pics
recent version showing improvements made by many folk

This mosaic is intended to commemorate the one millionth uploaded file at Wikimedia Commons. We (user:pfctdayelise and myself) chose the Wikimedia Foundation logo because it would be easy to represent well at a fairly coarse resolution, because it is a relatively simple image, and because it represents the Foundation itself.

The point of this mosaic is to visually represent the breadth of images that are available at Commons. We picked a representative starting set but we need more images in it... That's where you come in! You can read more about how exactly to contribute at the construction notes page, but it would be swell if en:wp folks added an image (replacing one of the repeatedly used ones, not one someone else added) to help celebrate Commons getting 1,000,000 media files!

Feel free to spread the word to other projects, and check out the history to see the folks that have already added images to the commemorative mosaic project. ++Lar: t/c 03:42, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

Sorry to be a bad-ass, but doesn't this violate the Visual identity guidelines? (I love the idea though!) Jon Harald Søby 17:04, 30 October 2006 (UTC)
Note that this logo is copyright by the foundation, but this is a foundation project. We checked with Danny to make sure this was an approved usage. His quote: "I think it is cool", so we think we're good there! - commons:Wikimedia logo mosaic/ConstructionNotes Raul654 17:13, 30 October 2006 (UTC)

I've added another thumbnail so people can see how much the image has improved as people have added, adjusted, moved and generally improved this mosaic. Several folk have crafted tools to help editors as well. Come on over, there are still duplicate pics to replace! ++Lar: t/c 21:58, 7 November 2006 (UTC)


•Sean•gorter•(T) (P) is now giving away signatures! Be sure to tell Sean gorter that you want a signature in his signature shop! •Sean•gorter•(T) (P) 03:25, 4 November 2006 (UTC)

Next can we have smileys, and flashing tags! We could become MySpacePedia! - DavidWBrooks 13:40, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
*bops DavidWBrooks* do not bite the nice people. I happen to like extravagant sigs. Besides, most of the ones Sean makes are pretty elegant and quiet, like Durova's. --Shrieking Harpy  Talk|Count 06:18, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
Ow! - DavidWBrooks 00:04, 9 November 2006 (UTC)
The only reason sigs with colourful background and smileys are annoying is that they clutter up diffs, and draw the eye too much in discussions. I'm not about the jump off the deep end and start burninatin' them, but they do annoy me a leeeetle bit. riana_dzasta 06:38, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Sean is doing a generous little thing here and running it with humor. I can think of 19 other things that need improvement when I hit random changes 20 times. Let's be gracious about this. DurovaCharge! 15:17, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

I like what he's doing - that's just my opinion on colourful sigs. I don't really care either way about it - like you say, Durova, there are way worse things out there. riana_dzasta 17:14, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia used as a means to launch malware attack

The German Heise news is reporting that a malware attack has been made using the good name of Wikipedia to encourage users to click on a link to a server from which the malware was downloaded. In a mass e-mail, recipients were told to download a "security update" for windows from a Wikipedia article. Even though the links placed on Wikipedia were quickly removed the emails linked directly to an historic version so for some time the scam was able to go on operating. Lumos3 23:42, 2 November 2006 (UTC)

That's an indication that, in Germany at least, Wikipedia is known, respected, and trusted enough that it's useful for malware authors, phishers, spammers, scammers, social engineers, and other such people to exploit it by pretending an association with them. *Dan T.* 12:54, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
If something similar ever happened at the English language edition please report to WP:AN/I immediately. Durova 14:55, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
The story is spreading across the media, but not all of the accounts include all of the details. Check Google News. -- llywrch 05:00, 5 November 2006 (UTC)
Such pages count as vandalism and therefore fall under CSD G3. Please tag them with {{Db-vandalism}} or {{Db|This is a page that is intended to direct users to a site that uploads malware to visitors' computers, and therefore is vandalism (CSD G3)}}, and warn the user with {{Test4im|name of malware page}}. Jesse Viviano 17:04, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
Oops! I did not think about the possibility that someone could vandalize an existing page to do this as well. Therefore, if there is a salvageable version before the vandalism, revert it, and then post to WP:AN/I to get the attention of an administrator who will delete the bad version from the page history. Jesse Viviano 21:19, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
Wouldn't it be a good idea to request an immediate CheckUser to gather evidence needed to identify and file a complaint with appropriate law enforcement agencies against vandals who use Wikipedia to spread malware? Jesse Viviano 04:43, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
I love that suggestion. And I'm sure the media would love to publish the pictures of the perpetrators once they're arrested. DurovaCharge! 16:25, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

PR Flacks who want to play nice with Wikipedia

A PR flack has followed Jimbo's explicit instructions that they should only post on Talk pages, rather than try to edit articles directly. As a result, Kamichat is experimenting in good faith with a question at Talk:Mobile home. If you know enough about mobile homes to discuss this matter (or know another Wikipedian who does), I encourage you to answer her very reasonable questions there. After all, people are watching, a failure to respond constructively to a good faith attempt to play by our rules could lead to harm to our project. -- llywrch 00:59, 12 November 2006 (UTC)

$10,000 donation to Wikimedia

Did anyone else notice this $10,000 donation by the W. Glen Boyd Charitable Foundation, back on October 10th? Maybe we should have something on it in the Signpost... — BRIAN0918 • 2006-11-08 03:44Z

As much as we should thank people who donate to the Foundation, there are a number of considerable donations throughout the year. A signpost story would set a considerable precedent for continued reporting of such donations. Further, the signpost is a Wikipedia-specific newsletter, while donations serve all Wikimedia projects. Jpe|ob 12:33, 13 November 2006 (UTC)

Open source seminar at Berkeley discusses Wikipedia

Pamela Samuelson and Mitch Kapor are currently teaching a seminar on Open Source at Berkeley. Yesterday they covered Wikipedia; before they talked about Open Source Biology, Open Journals, and of course Open Source software development and business models. Videos are online. AxelBoldt 03:34, 15 November 2006 (UTC)

Edit option on all pages....

The edit option on all of the pages is pretty dumb. I recently changed information on a page and it was left like that for about a week. This "tool" could be potentially dangerouse to all Wikipedia users. I sugest that you get ride of this iption or find away to make it more... safe. By the way, I kindly went back and changed teh information back to its origanal form before I did my little "test." —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 18:48, 7 November 2006 (UTC)

If the edit option wasn't on all pages, Wikipedia wouldn't have any content. See Nupedia. -- Chuq 22:54, 7 November 2006 (UTC)

We need to remember that Wikipedia is for everyone and can therefore be used by everyone, besides, some people may notice information about a subject that many others missed. If that person could not edit the page, then potentially useful information will be withheldfrom the public. -Charlie34

Repeat after me, 64 - Wiki! :) riana_dzasta 06:39, 8 November 2006 (UTC)
Okay, that went over my head. Care to explain the joke? -- llywrch 00:59, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
I think it says the original poster misunderstands the nature of wikis. DurovaCharge! 16:12, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
Erm -- now I see that. Sorry for the dumb question. Quotation marks can be a good thing, because I had read Riana's response as "Repeat after me, '64 - Wiki!'" & not as "Repeat after me, 64 - 'Wiki'!" -- llywrch 23:11, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
You know, the first time I read that reply it looked about the same to me too. :) DurovaCharge! 23:38, 12 November 2006 (UTC)
What's grown worse is that this morning whenever I saw the phrase "avoid instruction creep" in a sentence, my first take on those words is to parse them as a command to someone whom the writer is calling a creep! (And I always got good grades in reading in grade school, too.) -- llywrch 22:09, 17 November 2006 (UTC)
lol. Wouldn't that normally be written "Avoid instruction, CREEP!" (or at least have the comma)? --tjstrf talk 22:18, 17 November 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Translation is born

Hello, hola, bonjour, buon giorno, bom dia, здравствуйте, konnichi wa, ni hao, jambo, annyong ha shimnikka, al-salaam a'alaykum...

All those interested in or already involved with translating articles from other Wikipedias now have a new way of doing so, explained at the main project page and further at its help page.

Please remember to sign up by using the new userboxes, as explained in the "How to sign up" section of the main page, or you will not appear in the lists of translators available. This is important as it is imperative that we should be able to communicate with each other quickly and easily.

We hope you will like the new project. Any questions, comments or reports of technical glitches should be communicated to us on the project's talk page. As with all big changes, it may be confusing at first, but rest assured that we will do everything possible to guide you.

Happy editing!

Marialadouce | parlami 13:37, 14 December 2006 (UTC) and Jmfayard

Graphics Lab

A Graphics Lab has been created on Wikipedia-en. Based on the highly successful French and German graphics labs, it seeks to better organise and coordinate our graphic design and photo-editing efforts.

The EN graphics lab was just established by a French wikipedian working on that wikipedia's graphics lab. The French group has produced a ton of amazing, high quality work -- everything from svg diagrams and maps to photo retouching. Check it out to see some of their work. Though EN is more advanced than FR, they are far superior in this field. Now, though, we have the proper infrastructure; all we need are skilled graphic artists. Have a look at the graphics lab; maybe you can help. --Zantastik talk 02:24, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

Cisco advert

There was a Cisco advertisement on the television last night. During the first scene it showed wikipedia on a person's web browser. Did anybody else catch it? I thought that was kind of cool. — RJH (talk) 18:14, 9 December 2006 (UTC)

That is news of two weeks ago :-) But yes, very nice. For who would like to see the ad;

Experts rate Wikipedia's accuracy higher than non-experts

It's not a very big sample, but ...

User:Zoe|(talk) 23:12, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

Interesting, but some of the difference might be caused by the two distinct groups of articles being reviewed. The ones reviewed by experts were selected based on their areas of expertise, and were thus almost certainly fairly academic and technical topics. By contrast, those reviewed by non-expert were chosen with Wikipedia's own random article function, and would reflect a very different array of subjects. - SimonP 22:09, 29 November 2006 (UTC)
True. It may also be saying that articles specifically within areas of academic expertise are generally of higher quality than the average wikipedia article. — RJH (talk) 16:50, 30 November 2006 (UTC)
Conversely, it might say that Wikipedia articles have reached such a high level of quality that they reflect expert opinions which run counter to popular understanding...I hope that's what it means...but I wouldn't count on it. DurovaCharge! 05:43, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
This goes to prove my thesis of the Two Wikipedia's. There is the "Good" Wikipedia, which is evidenced by the "Academic" subjects. History, science, literature, etc. contain mostly articles with accessable, well written prose, extensively referenced, and relevent pictures and diagrams. The "Bad" Wikipedia is the one filled with fan-cruft of all sorts, self-created autobiographical pages, company advertisements, and the like. The two don't really mix. The experts don't often find the cruft articles, while the hit-and-run self promoters and the Pokemanistarwarsi16thdivisionenglishfootballleague editors spend so much time in their own little nook they never see the well-written and well-referenced articles. Thus, these two "wikipedias" continue existing, side-by-side, often oblivious of the division even existing. --Jayron32 05:59, 1 December 2006 (UTC)
Wow, did Jayron hit the nail on the head or what. Academic articles are awesome, as vandals don't have enough expertise (nor do they care) to edit them (besides the fact that the editors are more intelligent). But if I see the "number of albums sold" for Justin Timberlake change one more time, I will have blood shoot from my eyes. -Patstuart(talk)(contribs) 19:25, 4 December 2006 (UTC)
By contrast I don't necessarily believe that "fancruft" is at all a bad thing, and I would actually like to encourage it to some degree. Everybody has their particular niche interests, but through cross-linking, we can hopefully broaden a few horizons. A dull and dry encyclopedia of all things of scholarly interest, on the other hand, is far less likely to attract young readers. I'm not seeing why people take such offense to subjects that are not in their particular area of interest—it seems pointlessly destructive. — RJH (talk) 19:03, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

I'm not sure I understand the significance of these results. Yes, it's great that experts found Wikipedia accurate, but what's the significance of experts' opinions vs. those of non-experts? After all, if a non-expert finds error, it suggests that said non-expert knows [i]something.[/i]~Kazu 23:07, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

To paraphrase, experts, who know the subject matter of the articles, and who do not need the articles, find Wikipedia accurate. But those who do not know the subject matter of the articles are not sure, and can only use tangential evidence to detect error. Since the non-experts are not sure, they do not feel confidence in the articles, which shows that they are relying on authority to tell them what's what. But if non-experts can somehow find some other means to confirm the accuracy, then they can make use of the articles. --Ancheta Wis 04:12, 7 December 2006 (UTC)
Ah, thanks. I'd heard of this study but I never thought about exactly how they could test how accurate one was vs. the other. Thank you for clarifying.~Kazu 19:07, 11 December 2006 (UTC)

And another milestone

Wikimedia Commons now has over 1 million uploaded files! There is a press release about the achievement, which also serves as a good introduction to Commons for anyone not familiar with it. the wub "?!" 18:05, 30 November 2006 (UTC)

1,500,000th article

The 1,500,000th article has been created. Anyone know how to tell which one it was? --Xyzzyplugh 21:09, 24 November 2006 (UTC)

Last time I checked the statistics, I saw 1,500,043 as the number. After going to Special:Newpages as part of my patrol, I counted down from the top of the page, excluded the last 43 posted, and came up with this rundown:
42. 21:06, 24 November 2006 ‎We Come 1 (hist) ‎[1,630 bytes] ‎Haza-w (Talk | contribs) (Created article)
43. 21:06, 24 November 2006 ‎Janina Korowicka (hist) ‎[504 bytes] ‎Slgrandson (Talk | contribs) (Creating EN version of 500,000th German Wikipedia article)
44. 21:06, 24 November 2006 ‎Hotel Torni (hist) ‎[663 bytes] ‎Darin-0 (Talk | contribs)
45. 21:06, 24 November 2006 ‎Alonzo Jackson (hist) ‎[722 bytes] ‎Leemays (Talk | contribs)
46. 21:06, 24 November 2006 ‎Briastre (hist) ‎[718 bytes] ‎Hektor (Talk | contribs) (←Created page with 'Briastre')
May I unofficially congratulate Darin-0 (talk · contribs · count) for creating Hotel Torni, our milestone article. If I am wrong, please run an SQL query and tell me who deserved this honour. --Slgr@ndson (page - messages - contribs) 22:55, 24 November 2006 (UTC)
We delete 1 article for every 3 we create, so the total number of articles grows only about 2/3 as fast as the Newpages log grows. Hence you probably need to go about 50% further to find the article that was 1,500,000 at the time it was created. There is (or at least was) special logging software created just to track down milestones like this. One could also try to back out this information be interleaving the newpages and deletion logs to figure out how the total evolved as a competition between these two processes. Dragons flight 23:04, 24 November 2006 (UTC)
Agreed. The 1,500,000 actually keeps changing all the time, and therefore we need to find the article who first got there, rather than finding the current one. Michaelas10 (Talk) 07:58, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

Yay go Wikipedia 1,500,000 not long to 2,000,000 now! :) --WikiSlasher 01:15, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

Special:Statistics says it excludes many articles. Did you exclude those articles from counting the 43 backwards? – b_jonas 16:28, 25 November 2006 (UTC)
Please refer to the above discussion. Michaelas10 (Talk) 16:37, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

The anouncement says the lucky article was Kanab Ambersnail, although the creator's Talk page seems to indicate that it was one of four possible candidates, and the others were inconsequential. It looks like we'll never know. --YbborT 22:37, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

Yes, Kanab was chosen solely as a symbolic 1.5m article, simply because there was no organization to find the formal milestone article. This article has the most opportunity for growth, and is the most important, being an endangered species, versus a hotel and an American football player. -- Zanimum 16:49, 27 November 2006 (UTC)
There's nothing quite like being named as a milestone to have a page brought up to a high level of quality. I'll wager a small sum that it has had significantly more improvements than article number 1,499,999. :-) — RJH (talk) 18:07, 29 November 2006 (UTC)

Proposed new Wikipedia templates

I'm amazed that someone out there not only understands Wikipedia this well, but can write jokes about us that are funny. -- llywrch 00:58, 20 November 2006 (UTC)

That's the funniest thing I've seen since... well... last week. Thanks for sharing! ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs) 18:12, 20 November 2006 (UTC)
... I sooo want some of those. --ElaragirlTalk|Count 18:24, 20 November 2006 (UTC)
Wonderful! I'm still laughing. DurovaCharge! 17:21, 21 November 2006 (UTC)
Can someone put this on BJAODN? Really, it might not actually belong there per se, but it is damn funny. --Jayron32 05:48, 25 November 2006 (UTC)

DE-WIKIPEDIA --> 500,000

the DE-WIKIPEDIA reached 500,000 articels --Dirk | <°°> 01:13, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

Janina Korowicka is still red ;-) --Ü 02:21, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

Search change

I've done a couple of changes to MediaWiki:Searchnoresults, to include links to site searches on the three linked engines - what with the index being so far behind (and the mediawiki search engine being so rubbish not very good). As this is likely to affect most people at some time, I'm posting here to invite discussion (crossposting to WP:VPT, please comment on that (WP:VPT) page). Thanks -- Martinp23 22:53, 21 November 2006 (UTC)

I like those changes. Good job. :D --SonicChao talk 17:31, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia article on a stamp

Israel is commemorating the 120th anniversary of the development of Esperanto with a stamp featuring its inventor L. L. Zamenhof, and parts of the text of the Esperanto version of his biographical article (thankfully it's featured there). I don't see any obvious GFDL logo on the stamp, but surely this is more flattery than plagiarism. What's next? Perhaps someone could mine Portal:History for applicable narratives to carve in stone on national monuments? The more prosaic explanation would I suppose be that Wikipedia was "honored" in this way because of the role of the Esperanto Wikipedia among modern Esperantists. Anyway, see this detailed description of the stamp and this color image. --Pharos 07:07, 6 January 2007 (UTC)

That stamp better be released under the GFDL, or I look forward to the lawsuit. :) Night Gyr (talk/Oy) 21:19, 8 January 2007 (UTC)
As long as they only used sections of an article, and not the whole thing, it should be fine. Tlogmer ( talk / contributions ) 18:29, 13 January 2007 (UTC)
No, using only a section doesn't get you automatic fair use. Night Gyr (talk/Oy) 00:37, 14 January 2007 (UTC)
Their best case for fair use would be if the artist argued the selection of text was intended to honor the achievements of the Esperanto Wikipedia project (i.e. a form of criticism). He does not seem to have done this explicitly, and the stamp itself does not appear to give any attribution to Wikipedia. I'm not even sure that the folks at the Esperanto Wikipedia have heard about this; perhaps someone should notify them.--Pharos 01:13, 16 January 2007 (UTC)
I assumed they had - since I had heard some time back - but I couldn't see any ref on their VP-equivalent or any mention on the general mailing lists. No idea where I heard it - perhaps IRC? I've emailed foundation-l and wikipedia-l to let them know and asked someone to notify eo.wp; I'll mention it to Cimon as well when I next see him. Shimgray | talk | 13:23, 16 January 2007 (UTC)
The text is almost (and on a stamp will be) illegible; even ignoring the physical size of the letters it's in all sorts of weird shifting grey shades. It's clearly a transformative artistic work, using the material as a physical image to become a background part of a visual nontextual artwork and no longer a recognisable textual work - something that is highly likely to be permissible under whatever fair use/fair dealing/common sense exceptions are in Israeli copyright law. I really don't think this is something we need to spend time worrying about.
(On a more academic note, if that's a collaboratively-written heavily-edited article, it would be interesting to know if any individual author could really contend they had standing to sue as the copyright holder of the section in question...) Shimgray | talk | 01:32, 16 January 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, I wasn't worried about, but rather amazed and glad that the Esperanto Wikipedia had received this "honor".--Pharos 01:43, 16 January 2007 (UTC)

John Bambenek is back

He just wrote an article for MercatorNet laying into Wikipedia...

How much did his vanity bio getting whacked play into it you think? Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/John C. A. Bambenek (3rd nomination) -- Narciblog 06:26, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

I was wondering when ErdosvillePhil would finish his article. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 17:13, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

This is John Bambenek portraying Doug Whiner. His consistent complaint seems to be that Wikipedia is incomplete. Well, duhhhhh! Also, he complains that (paraphrased) "busy people are too busy to edit". Duh again. Otherwise, his complaint seems to be more about the "wild west" quality (both positive and negative) of the Internet as a whole rather than of Wikipedia in specific. He would shortchange all the great quality work here for the remaining work that has yet to express quality. The worst part of his article is that he is disrespecting Wikipedians, most of whom are performing a great service for humankind, something he cannot claim for himself. What has he done to help his fellow humans understand more? Trashing a great phenomenon and benefit to humankind is tantamount to a monkey throwing their crap. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 17:58, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

You're joking, right? "great service for humankind" and "great phenomenon and benefit to humankind"? It's a f***ing website not the internal combustion engine. And somehow, while his article has problems, I think that journalists have had SOME contribution to society... -- 18:29, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
Nope, not joking. There wasn't a free-encyclopedia before wikipeida. Wikipedia has changed the very nature of encyclopedias. Britannica has had to change they way they do business. ---J.S (T/C/WRE) 18:36, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
Absolutely! Future centuries will see the world's pre-wikipedia lack of information about Pokemon characters, subway stops, and elementary schools as a shameful sign of 20th-century backwardness. Thank goodness we came along to benefit humankind. - DavidWBrooks 19:50, 7 January 2007 (UTC)
I'll take that as a funny snark. Seriously, though, we do cover mounds of important topics, especially in areas like history and science, and I think we're on the verge of a major Wikipedia movement re: better coverage of subjects bound to geographic communities -- WikiProjects for cities started exploding in 2006, and methinks this will continue in 2007. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 20:39, 8 January 2007 (UTC)
No joke. As, IMHO, Wikipedia is the greatest use of the Internet so far, yes, I do think ultimately the freeing of general knowledge will be a *much* greater development than the internal combustion engine, which, by the way, is terribly obsolete. Also, I think we can agree that all journalists aren't created equal. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 20:43, 8 January 2007 (UTC)
I don't think even John Bambenek has claimed that he is a journalist. User:Zoe|(talk) 17:34, 11 January 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject Resource Exchange

Announcing the founding of WikiProject Resource Exchange. The Resource Exchange is dedicated to organizing and sharing the vast resources available to wikipedians to aid in verification.

The project is designed as a way for wikipedians to share the benefits of access to difficult to find references. Many rural areas have limited or no access to much of what other wikipedians take for granted. Some users have access to resources that are truly difficult to find or are cost-prohibitive for most people. ---J.S (T/C) 20:59, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia Folding@home team

In case you didn't know, there's a Wikipedia Folding@home team. Please join in! Dan100 (Talk) 12:28, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

Wiki Admin profiled in French newspaper

The January 3 2007 issue of the French newspaper Libération featured an extensive portrait/bio of Florence Devouard, aka Anthere, head of the Wikipedia board. Coverage was positive both towards Anthere and Wikipedia. Rhinoracer 15:02, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

For those who understand French, here's the link to the article (expires in about a week). _R_ 22:47, 3 January 2007 (UTC)

New project, Wikipedia:Requested recordings

In order to reduce Wikipedia's reliance on fair use recordings of music which is in the public domain, Wikipedia:Requested recordings has been started. It works on the same principle as Wikipedia:Requested pictures, hopefully connecting musicians with music which needs to be recorded. Please sign up if you have resources which could be used, or propose a work to be recorded. Thanks, Mak (talk) 22:11, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

Making new recordings which are licensed so we can use them is a good thing, but don't confuse people in the process! If a recording is in the public domain, it's available for use without restriction (in fact, it's as free or freer than any "free" license), and "fair use" has nothing to do with it. - Nunh-huh 14:06, 30 December 2006 (UTC)
No,I think the issue is that the music is in the public domain (Bach, for example), but the recording is not (i.e. anything made in the past 70 years). Night Gyr (talk/Oy) 18:15, 30 December 2006 (UTC)
That's a somewhat confusing way to put it. Let's say instead that what needs to be distinguished is the copyright on the composition and the copyright on the recording. It should be reasonably easy to get free recordings on classical works: any Wikipedian who can play an instrument could record a work and release it under a CC-license for us to use. If there's still a copyright on the composition, however, we're pretty much stuck with fair-use, as it's doubtful anyone will release any composition notable enough to be mentioned here under a free license. —Chowbok 21:51, 1 January 2007 (UTC)

Rosie O'Donnell quotes Wikipedia in her ongoing feud with Donald Trump,,20005257,00.html User:Zoe|(talk) 05:01, 22 December 2006 (UTC)

I hope that article's impeccably well sourced. Tony Fox (arf!) 05:06, 22 December 2006 (UTC)
Oh my... DurovaCharge! 00:27, 23 December 2006 (UTC)

she could be the one who edited that article. SummerThunder 04:41, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

  • It is clear who is on the moral high ground here. --Infrangible 13:48, 30 December 2006 (UTC)
    • Who? Everybody else? Just H 22:01, 1 January 2007 (UTC)

New Year's Eve

If you want to spend it at Wikipedia check Wikipedia:Wikipedians spending New Year's Eve on Wikipedia. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Romihaitza (talkcontribs) 20:10, 31 December 2006 (UTC).

100,000,000 edits

it looks like the edit count on the Special:Statistics page rolled over to 100,000,000 edits recently.. break open the champagne? 00:42, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

I suppose there's no chance of finding what the 100,000,000th edit was? --tjstrf talk 02:19, 31 December 2006 (UTC)
I could be wrong, but I got the impression that the counter on Special:Statistics crossed 100,000,000 twice. This comment suggests that the edit count crossed the milestone early on 26 Dec (UTC). I seem to recall checking the counter sometime afterwards and noticing that it was below 100,000,000. Then, I am guessing that it crossed 100,000,000 again early on 27 Dec (UTC), as suggested by the above comment. In the past, I have noticed that the edit counter occasionally seems to drop, for some reason (possibly the deletion of pages?). For instance, I just noticed the edit counter seemed to drop from 100,866,xyz to 100,863,805...I reloaded a couple more times and got 100,867,abc followed by 100,864,def. Does anyone know what causes these seemingly large fluctuations.--GregRM 03:39, 31 December 2006 (UTC)
I'm pretty sure it doesn't count deleted edits, and there have been pages deleted with hundreds or thousands of edits. Night Gyr (talk/Oy) 04:23, 31 December 2006 (UTC)

Redundancy at Haditha

Discussion moved to Template talk:In the news#Redundancy at Haditha. - BanyanTree 04:58, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

Jimbo Wales attacks Google, calling its results "spam and useless crap"

CIO-Today Report: [20] Given the indirect support Google has obviously given Wikipedia and its ability to substantially reduce Wikipedia's traffic, could it be dangerous for Wales to use such rhetoric? Shouldn't Wales also be more cautious when connecting independent Wikipedia's "popularity" to a commercial venture supported by and positioned against Google? Tfine80 22:06, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

CIO-Today seems to be confused as to the distinction between Wikipedia; Wikimedia; and Wikia. Also, Wales didn't say Google's results were always spam and useless crap, he said you sometimes get spam and useless crap. There's a difference. Some Wikipedia articles are spam and useless crap too, and I bet he'd be the first to admit that. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs) 22:12, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
Here's the exact quote:

"Google is very good at many types of search, but in many instances it produces nothing but spam and useless crap,"

The same can be said about Wikipedia; it has very many good articles, but many articles are nothing but spam and useless crap. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs) 22:14, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
In no short order... the search project is not supported by Amazon; it is not (as far as I am aware) a commercial venture; Jwales did not "connect Wikipedia" to the new project. What you have there is a slightly garbled version of the Times article, which itself got several important factors wrong... Shimgray | talk | 01:26, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Who hasn't run an occasional Google search and received a load of spam? Today I browsed Wikipedia and eventually reached sex symbol, which was tagged for lack of sources. So I thought I'd run a quick search for definitions and commentary from reputable sources. Surely Harper's or Vanity Fair occasionally run articles on the subject. There really wasn't much of use in the top 100 Google returns.[21] Wikipedia was at the top, followed by an image gallery, then a Wikipedia mirror. The fourth return looked promising: a New York Times article. That discussed a current fad for bearded men - too specialized for a general article about sex symbols. Fifth was an online quiz; sixth, an overview of current Bollywood stars; seventh, a very short biography of Theda Bara. Then (and it surprised me that this sort of thing placed no higher) sex advice. Ninth was some avatar downloads. Then a blog about Jon Stewart. The rest were about the same: an algorithm's regurgitation based on superficial text analysis and website prominence rather than an intelligent human being's assessment. Some people would run this search more for personal amusement than research purposes, but even for that the results were quirky: none of the summaries mentioned Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie, but Hillary Clinton and Pee-Wee Herman turned up. There's no accounting for taste... DurovaCharge! 01:45, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Massive donation?

$186,648.00 has been donated to WikiMedia by an Anonymous Donor, with description "This person wishes to remain anonymous. Roger donation made with stocks." Wow. — Dark Shikari talk/contribs 18:52, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

Whoever you are, thank you very much. DurovaCharge! 21:35, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
This may be the anonymous matching donation, which is the explanation I've heard for this $US 286,800. - BanyanTree 03:26, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
The link is [22]. And the story has made it to digg[23]! utcursch | talk 12:10, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
Are the 186k and 286k donations seperate? Was the 186k in stock? RHB 15:00, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia founder to launch new search engine

According to this December 24, 2006 article in the Guardian, Jimmy Wales is "set to launch an internet search engine with that he hopes will become a rival to Google and Yahoo!". Stevie is the man! TalkWork 20:01, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

Information Week posted another article about this today. The search engine is code-named Wikiasari. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 21:04, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

It isn't called Wikiasari. That's the name of an old search project that pre-dated Wikicities. Angela. 23:20, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
I'm only repeating what the article stated. Do you know what it is supposed to be called? Stevie is the man! TalkWork 04:52, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
It doesn't have a name. It's just for now until we figure out what it is. Angela. 17:45, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

New posters in the store: "Think Free"

I'm running the Wikipedia Cafepress store for the moment, and we're making an attempt to bring it up to date. We've started a new line of posters with the tagline "Think Free" (an apple parody, kind of). Let us know what you think.

Tlogmer ( talk / contributions ) 18:23, 23 December 2006 (UTC)

I've added another poster: an astronaut floating above the Earth in a halo of wikitext. Here. Tlogmer ( talk / contributions ) 09:58, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

Wikipedia arbitration claims is "propagandistic" and can't be cited

In an unusual turn of events, Wikipedia arbitration dispute has ended up with a factual finding that the well known UK encyclopedia Spartacus is "propagandistic" and too unreliable to even cite in Wikipedia. Citing a policy governing "extremist" organizations, the Wikipedia arbitration panel has banned Spartacus from use as a reliable source.

“Use of unreliable sources by RPJ
1.4) RPJ regularly cites information from unreliable sites dedicated to a propagandistic point of view, one is, [4] ([5]) and [6] ([7]). See also this, this, and this. material from another conspiracy theory site:” [24]

As background, a group of complaining editors are attempting to ban me on a quickly mutating set of charges which now include being guilty of citing Spartacus. The group of complaining editors seem to be ready to strip references to Spartacus from Wikipedia. As the defending editor in the arbitration, I was surprised to see this happen. The nature of the arbitration, in other respects, has been quite unusual but I am surprised at the intense hostility directed at myself and now Spartacus. Upon hearing of the charges against Spartacus, John Simkin, of Spartacus, sent a message to the arbitration panel stating among other things:

“At the time I created the Spartacus Educational website, I was a history teacher (11-18 year olds) in England. I was also a prolific writer of history books for students. As I still held the copyright for my books, I decided to put them on the web free of charge. Students, from all over the world, were therefore being provided with free teaching materials. This is especially useful for students in the Third World who do not have the money to purchase textbooks or to those who study in countries where the authorities use the political system to control the information they receive. On average, we get 6 million page impressions a month. A survey carried out by the Fischer Family Trust showed that the Spartacus Educational website was used by more history students in the UK than any other website, including that of the BBC. As you can see, I am a very dangerous person.” [25] RPJ 14:08, 19 December 2006 (UTC)
I know the Spartacus site, and have in the past found it quite useful. However, it is not NPOV and also has not gone through any sort of peer review process. For an issue like the JFK assassination, where there is a vast body of reputable material, and also a great deal of controversy, I would not consider the site a sufficiently reliable resource. The wording of the ArbCom finding, which I endorsed, might be a bit strong but I do feel that the site is not a reliable enough reference to be relied upon so heavily in the JFK article. I wouldn't support a blanket ban on Spartacus, but it should be used sparingly and with care. I would place it alongside the Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance page, where we have similar guidelines worked out after a long debate. - SimonP 17:10, 19 December 2006 (UTC)

Simonp is incorrect about Spartacus. First, it is a very reputable publication and it is surprising to hear someone imply otherwise. Second there is no "heavy " reliance on Spartacus in the Kennedy article and that is easy to check by the percentage time it is cited. Third, there were "no long debates" on guidelines finding Spartacus unreliable. In fact, when I formally questioned you arbitrators on why you considered Spartacus "propagandistic" and cited the "extremist organization" policy, I was merely told to go read it.
I did go read additional parts of Spartacus and found it well written and easy to use and wrote a short memo on it to the arbitrators. Simonp didn't even reply. No one replied.
Here is what you concluded:
"4) It is inappropriate to use information from unreliable sources devoted to an extreme partisan point of view, see [Wikipedia:Reliable_sources#Partisan_and_extremist_websites].

"Use of unreliable sources by RPJ
1.4) RPJ regularly cites information from unreliable sites dedicated to a propagandistic point of view, one is, [4] ([5]) and [6] ([7]). See also this, this, and this. material from another conspiracy theory site:
1. SimonP 02:38, 13 December 2006 (UTC)"

RPJ 18:57, 19 December 2006 (UTC)

And why have you brought this here? There is nobody here who can overrule an ArbCom decision. User:Zoe|(talk) 18:29, 20 December 2006 (UTC)

Does this mean that all citations to Spartacus Schoolnet should now be considered invalid? I would imagine that there are several thousand. I'm not sure of the extent to which an ArbCom decision like this sets general policy, as against being a ruling on how a source was used in a particular article. - Jmabel | Talk 08:35, 23 December 2006 (UTC)

Please note the clarification I posted at WP:RFAR, and appended discussion by other Arbitrators. As far as I'm concerned it is exactly that: a ruling on how a source was used in a particular article. Naturally editors need to take some note of what is said there. Charles Matthews 11:29, 24 December 2006 (UTC)

The Guardian: The new 100 most useful sites

In a story dated December 21, 2006, The Guardian places Wikipedia among The new 100 most useful sites. Wikipedia is the first site in the "Reference" section of the article:

Two years ago, Wikipedia was only mentioned under "Readers' favourites". It didn't merit a mention under "References". - BanyanTree 15:51, 22 December 2006 (UTC)

New reference desk

Per discussion at Wikipedia:Village pump (proposals)/Archive#Popular culture and law reference desks, we have a new entertainment reference desk. (The archiving system still needs to be configured for the new desk.) NeonMerlin 23:39, 20 December 2006 (UTC)

Sixth most popular search term

According to the BBC, "Wikipedia" was the sixth most popular search term on Google during 2006. The article doesn't state whether any terms which would appear on the list have been censored. Warofdreams talk 17:54, 18 December 2006 (UTC)

I often search with "-wikipedia" so I can find non-WP sources. I wonder if that is included in the total? :-) — RJH (talk) 22:41, 18 December 2006 (UTC)
If only "-wikipedia scrapes" worked, too. But that would cut most search totals in half. - DavidWBrooks 22:49, 18 December 2006 (UTC)


User:SimonP is profiled in TIME magazine -,9171,1570732,00.html. User:Zoe|(talk) 07:35, 17 December 2006 (UTC)

Follow the link 'Power to the people' on the TIME site, and click it 14 times to get to SimonP. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Ancheta Wis (talkcontribs) 10:33, 17 December 2006 (UTC).
???The link I provided goes straight to the page. User:Zoe|(talk) 20:42, 17 December 2006 (UTC)
Yeah, when I clicked on the link the first time, it took the clicks to find it and get there. But the 2nd time I clicked it after my post, then it went right to SimonP. What might have happened, I wonder. Ancheta Wis
Perhaps a link to the printable view will work. Doesn't show the photo though. --YbborT 21:09, 17 December 2006 (UTC)
Hah. Maybe the link only works once it's in your cache. User:Zoe|(talk) 23:17, 17 December 2006 (UTC)

Why references don't increase Wikipedia's reliability

Hi, I wrote a little essay explaining my belief that References don't increase Wikipedia's reliability. Cheers, AxelBoldt 23:45, 4 January 2007 (UTC)

I have seen editors make valid fixes to articles based on the cited references, so I don't completely agree with this. Plus I think the presence of the references helps to stabilize an article by cutting down on the number of low quality edits. Or at least that's been my experience with the pages I try to monitor. — RJH (talk) 20:58, 8 January 2007 (UTC)
Wikipedia is not reliable or trustworthy, period. We're here to give people a summary of knowledge and point them in the direction of better sources. You're not supposed to rely on wikipedia for anything. Night Gyr (talk/Oy) 21:30, 8 January 2007 (UTC)
  • Why does it have to be all or nothing? There is still some value in secondary sources. --Infrangible 04:59, 11 January 2007 (UTC)
    • I could imagine that somebody researching a topic might find a list of references to be an invaluable time saver. But I also find that just hunting down useful references helps me to weed out existing flaws in an article. — RJH (talk) 23:24, 17 January 2007 (UTC)


[26] Tyrenius 03:50, 18 January 2007 (UTC)

It wasn't up for that long. Specifically from Jan 4th to Jan 10th. Yeah it's bad, but it didn't stay even a week. --YbborT 04:05, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
By our standards, a week is pretty bad. We really need to be thinking hours before we can be comfortable... Shimgray | talk | 11:32, 18 January 2007 (UTC)
Just another publicized piece of vandalism (of innumerable visible cases). We need "sighted" versions, yesterday. -R. S. Shaw 20:53, 19 January 2007 (UTC)
In similar news, a dog shat in Central Park, and somebody in the Bush administration lied about something today. Stevie is the man! TalkWork 00:26, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia reference in Sally Forth (syndicated strip)

In today's (January 23) strip, Sally is upset about turning 40, and her husband is trying to calm her about it, but she reminds him of his bad reaction on his turning 40. There's a flashback where he is saying, "If you don't say it, it won't happen." His defense is, "I read it in an unverified Wikipedia article." User:Zoe|(talk) 02:47, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Sign of the community aging: Wikipedia references are no longer surprising. Remember when we'd all be thrilled at a comment in even the most obscure of places? - DavidWBrooks 03:06, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

We're #4

Some good publicity in this Reuters article. - Nunh-huh 21:27, 26 January 2007 (UTC)

Wired Article


This story has an interesting take on a situation between Wiki and an outside company that tried to create articles on the wiki for profit. --Measure 19:22, 25 January 2007 (UTC)

a small clan of diehards, huh? And how many contributors do Kohs's version and have? User:Zoe|(talk) 21:03, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
It does make me wonder why businesses haven't tried using Wikipedia:Bounty board and Wikipedia:Reward board, e.g. "$200 for a B-class article on our corporation". Of course there's no way for Kohs to exclusively capture that money, so one wouldn't expect him to propose that as a solution. The uproar that would ensue if, for example, ExxonMobil put a $1000 reward on their article would be something to see. - BanyanTree 20:00, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
That would be entertaining indeed. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 20:05, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
I really don't think the Bounty board should be used when you a have a personal interest in the subject. Superm401 - Talk 20:24, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
Why would anyone who didn't have an interest post a bounty? ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 21:18, 26 January 2007 (UTC)
An academic/intellectual/cultural interest yes, but not a personal one. Superm401 - Talk 04:41, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

Microsoft and Wikipedia

See the following interesting blog post from today:

So I was a little surprised to receive email a couple of days ago from Microsoft saying they wanted to contract someone independent but friendly (me) for a couple of days to provide more balance on Wikipedia concerning ODF/OOXML. I am hardly the poster boy of Microsoft partisanship! Apparently they are frustrated at the amount of spin from some ODF stakeholders on Wikipedia and blogs.
I think I’ll accept it: FUD enrages me and MS certainly are not hiring me to add any pro-MS FUD, just to correct any errors I see. If anyone sees any examples of incorrect statements on Wikipedia or other similar forums in the next few weeks, please let me know: whether anti-OOXML or anti-ODF. In fact, I already had added some material to Wikipedia several months ago, so it is not something new, so I’ll spend a couple of days mythbusting and adding more information.

—Steven G. Johnson 02:59, 23 January 2007 (UTC)

Link to story on CNN, but in all reality it's word-for-word the same as the MSNBC one. It's from Associated Press, so who knows who else has picked it up. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 20:55, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

      • Sounds like a good job if you can get it. Just H 02:53, 29 January 2007 (UTC)


Instead of typing wp(shift);vp to get here I redirected it to just wpvp try it yourself...although it may stand for Working People's Vanguard Party, but it doesn't stand for much else so it should be acceptable, much faster to just type wpvp Pseudoanonymous 20:21, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

I've removed this, as WP:REDIRECT states that redirects should usually be removed if "It is a cross-space redirect out of article space, such as one pointing into the User or Wikipedia namespace." Warofdreams talk 20:27, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

CyberMedia India Online article

Complains that our hindi article was vandalised and some comments about indian goverment blocking policy:

Geni 12:59, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Commons Picture of the Year competition

Voting is now open at Commons to choose the finalists for Picture of the Year 2006. The voting page is at Commons:Picture of the Year/2006. All editors having at least 100 edits either here or on any Wikimedia Wiki are welcome to participate. --MichaelMaggs 06:58, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedian text on official stamp

On December 17 2006 the Israeli postal service issued a stamp celebrating the 120th anniversary of the international language Esperanto. The artist who created the stamp, Moshe Pereg, created the figure of Zamenhof, the creator of Esperatno, using the very text that describes the biography of Zamenhof in the esperantic wikipedia. Beautiful idea! --Civitano de la tero 16:54, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

Already posted. Night Gyr (talk/Oy) 21:44, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia in The Sunday Times

Jeremy Clarkson in The Sunday Times today has these kind words:

Why buy an encyclopedia when there’s Wikipedia (apart from the fact that everything on Wikipedia is wrong)?

Tyrenius 17:32, 28 January 2007 (UTC)

The revolution will be YouTubized? Superm401 - Talk 02:23, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Well, people still buy the Times, and it's certainly not for its unfailing accuracy. Of course, they may have birdcages. - Nunh-huh 00:17, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

Game-cover Merge again

Some may recall 2 months ago when I posted something about a merge proposal for game-related fair use templates. After waiting a while with no objections I performed the merge. It has now been reverted by someone who thinks I did not make enough of an effort to contact interested persons to obtain concensus. So here we go again. ANYONE INTERESTED IN Template:Game-cover, Template:Boardgamecover, OR Template:RPG-artwork IS INVITED TO JOIN A DISCUSSION AT Template_talk:Game-cover#Merge ABOUT MERGING THESE THREE TEMPLATES. I'm cross-posting this to all the Village pumps. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 20:28, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Urban Dictionary - Word of the Day

February 06, 2007: wikilobbying

The act of paying others money to edit [Wikipedia] entries in order to cast the employer's company, product or point of view in a better light. Coined by [Stephen Colbert] of [The Colbert Report].

When money determines Wikipedia entries, reality becomes a commodity.

"IBM could throw some of their money at perception and make their product 'objectively better', then Microsoft can just fire their cash cannons back and we're off to the races. This is the essence of wikilobbying." - Stephen Colbert

-- Barringa 22:18, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

Wikilobbying got deleted here as a neologism and a vandalism inspiration. Corvus cornix 22:56, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Researching Wikipedia

I have compiled a list of studies published in Wikipedia space, as well as various useful tools developed for reesearch purposes and published on Wikipedia (mostly): see Wikipedia:Researching Wikipedia - and old, forgotten 2003 essay that I hijacked for that purpose. On the sidenote, it appears that OR is allowed on Wikipedia, as long as it is 'about Wikipedia' and put in Wikipedia namespace. I wonder how many pages should be in this list but I missed cause they were never categorized...-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus | talk  18:51, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

That's a really fantastic resource. Thanks for the good work.—Perceval 02:37, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, this is rather helpful reorganization. I bet most outside researchers could spend many hours and never find this stuff.--Pharos 03:45, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

Harvard Business School Professors use Wikipedia editorial policy as a case study

Karim R. Lakhani, and Andrew P. Mcafee of the Harvard Business School have used an Afd as an example of Wikipedia's Governance process. The article in question was Enterprise 2.0. See Lumos3 16:58, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

They might point out that Do not delete is almost always a phrasing used by inexperienced editors and their sockpuppets and meatpuppets whose article creations are doomed for deletion or merging. Someone could probably write a sociology thesis on why that occurs with such regularity. DurovaCharge! 21:24, 2 February 2007 (UTC)
Probably because it is the oposite of delete. Insiders use the jargon term "keep".Geni 00:12, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
Noted on WP:ACST, I moved it to WP:SUP.-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus | talk  18:52, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

Invitation to a WikiPlay

Gendale, A Morality WikiPlay in Four Tabulated Acts. Itayb 14:39, 24 February 2007 (UTC)

New noticeboard

Introducing Wikipedia:WikiProjects noticeboard, which is like Wikipedia:Community noticeboard only for WikiProjects. It's a page where you can announce things relevant to all WikiProjects. Check it out! Signed, your friendly neighborhood MessedRocker. 20:18, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

Adminstrators right to vanish

Users should be aware that an adminstrator was recently granted the right to vanish and return with a new username, with adminstrative rights. There is no obvious connection between the old username and the new user name. I have strong concerns that this action goes against our requirements of adminstrative actions being reviewable (the only actions that are not reviewable are oversights), and am strongly opposed to allowing adminstrative access to continue to a new account without a public linking of the two accounts. Obviously, the user could vanish, return, regain the communities trust and reapply for adminship. To do an end-around hiding ones history and not having to reprove oneself to the community at large is not acceptable. In this specific case I was finally able to conclusivly determine the username and am satisifed that the administrator was not "under a cloud," but the principal is highly disturbing. Hipocrite - «Talk» 16:54, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Hmm, if I'm thinking about the same procedure, this has happened before several times.  Grue  17:15, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
One with no link to the old adminstrator from the new other than assurances by a (albeit trusted) user that this is an old adminstrator? Who? Hipocrite - «Talk» 17:33, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Off the top of my head, User:Esteffect had a different username before, and there are no obvious links to the old username...  Grue  17:53, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
User changed usernames. His edit history and adminstrative log are attached, in full, to his new account. Hipocrite - «Talk» 18:18, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

If a new account were to appear with administrative functions and no corresponding RFA, the promoting bcrat would have an obligation to explain why the promotion was made, right? And, whatever private evidence he might have to link the two accounts would be meaningless to the rest of the community. Friday (talk) 17:36, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

In this case the bureaucrat explained that the admin wished to change his name for privacy reasons, and stated he would make the old name available to any other bureaucrat, checkuser or arbitrator for confirmation. It seems that Hipocrite did not trust the bureaucrat to have done due diligence in determining whether the original account was in good standing. Hipocrite also seems to have believed the account belonged to person 'A' when it really belonged to person 'B', which may have contributed to his sense that something was amiss. See the discussion at WT:BN. Bottom line, I don't see a reason to deny admins a privilege (right to vanish) that we grant to non-admins. Thatcher131 17:40, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
As long as the due diligence has been done that the user did not leave under any controversy over their actions, then I don't see the problem here. Especially considering the user wasn't trying to hide, but agreed to make the information available to other bcrats, checkusers. and arbitrators to verify. As long as a reasonably large number of people know and verify the situation, then the chance for abuse is very low. I say this while I haven't had a chance to check my email to see if anyone has chosen to inform me about the situation. - Taxman Talk 17:51, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
I'm not discussing the case per se, as much as the ability for an adminstrator to clear their logs but retain their buttons via expressed concern for "privacy." I trust no one to due due dilligence but a distributed community. Hipocrite - «Talk» 17:52, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
If we could trust all users with sensitive information we would have deleted revisions visible to all. If we could trust all admins with sensitive information we wouldn't have oversight. But NoSeptember's point's below are decent that they aren't really going to stay unknown for long. I'm not tied to allowing this type of thing, if people are really against it, there's no huge harm in having people wait a few months and build up trust with another account. Let's just not pretend that there aren't good reasons to want to protect one's privacy in verious circumstances. - Taxman Talk 19:38, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
With greater power comes greater responsibility. An admin should have clearly visible proof of his RfA. If they have no RfA, they is no proof that a community has granted them adminship and they should either provide a link to their RfA, clearly visible on their userpage, or they should be stripped of this privilige.-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus | talk  17:53, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
This has unfortunate implications, as far as admin accountability is concerned. I agree with NoSeptember at Wikipedia_talk:Bureaucrats'_noticeboard#User:Gaillimh that this should be avoided in the future. Friday (talk) 18:05, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
Ack, my privacy :o, no one reads that page, and now my comments will spread all over the internet! (just kidding ;) Seriously, unless someone is boringly uncontroversial and unnoticed, there is little chance that any widely held secret will last very long. At a minimum the bureaucrats should make that fact clear to any future admins who try this. Sometimes not trying to hide will provide more cover than trying to hide. NoSeptember 19:14, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
It clearly is not optimal and will not become common practice, but there have been circumstances (I am not saying applicable in this instance) where administrators have had to leave suddenly for extremely good reasons, and readminning quietly under a new name should remain an option when it's called for. Newyorkbrad 18:38, 21 February 2007 (UTC)
I think it needs to be reserved for cases where there is real harassment or where someone's real-life identity has been compromised against their will. It shouldn't just be a blank check to make a clean start divorced from the consequences of old actions. --BigDT 04:38, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Cafepress store redesign

I just redesigned the Wikipedia cafepress store. Let me know what you think. Tlogmer ( talk / contributions ) 05:16, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

wikipedians tend towards being geeks which means it is likely they know the problems with cafe press and won't buy.Geni 13:03, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
I know. Help me convince the rest of the fundraising committee of that. Tlogmer ( talk / contributions ) 06:50, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
What are the problems with CafePress for those of us who don't already know?—Perceval 22:19, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
quality of product and amount of money that goes to CafePress.Geni 18:12, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
I agree completely. --Chris Griswold () 23:07, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Really it's not the best way to make an income for wikipediaKben 15:55, 22 February 2007 (UTC)

But it's fun to show support. Maybe the store page should make clear that donating directly is a better way to help the foundation. Tlogmer ( talk / contributions ) 02:33, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

Werdnabot out of commission

Werdnabot has now been blocked for several days following a malfunction. Werdna does not appear to be around to deal with the problem. It may be worth considering switching the archiving to MiszaBot II (for project talk pages and noticeboards) and MiszaBot III (for user talk pages), especially if talkpages are getting very full. To have either of those Bots handle archiving, make a request at User talk:Misza13, including the following information:

  1. Page to be archived =
  2. Current archive =
  3. Age threads should reach before being archived =
  4. Max size of archive before new archive is started =

Hopefully that should keep everything functioning smoothly... WjBscribe 15:05, 10 March 2007 (UTC)

Update: I have created a dedicated page for the requests: User:MiszaBot/Archive requests. Please post them there. Thanks, Миша13 17:07, 10 March 2007 (UTC)