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Trus me
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In-depth analysis

As of May 19th, 2007, the Conservapedia Commandments page says "This page is the only rule page on Conservapedia". It also links to Conservapedia:Administrators, Conservapedia:Locks and Blocks and Conservapedia Guidelines. The first two of those contain additional rules; the last in turn links to several additional pages of which at least two contain additional rules (Conservapedia:Attribution and Conservapedia:Civility).

The Commandments page goes on to claim "These guidelines are kept simple in order to avoid the arbitrary and biased enforcement that is rampant on Wikipedia." It's difficult to see how to reconcile this with TK's insistence that "there isn't equal protection under the law" and "In my mind their(sic) are rules for actual people, and then there are rules for non-humans".

This structure is classic authoritarianism — a so-called simple "framework" of rules to follow, backed up by ad hoc rules made up to deal with loopholes, rather than improving the basic framework or conceding that they are full of flaws.

The Commandments[edit]

1. "Everything you post must be true and verifiable. Do not copy from Wikipedia or elsewhere unless it was your original work."

This should not be taken to mean that as long as it is true and verifiable it can be included. Any edits deemed too liberal (which is nearly anything that might show anyone or anything conservative in a negative light, regardless of how true or verifiable) are removed immediately.
Furthermore the second sentence is constantly violated. Much of Conservapedia is copy/pasted from other websites, glossaries, etc (see Conservapedia:Blatant plagiarism)

2. "Always cite and give credit to your sources, even if in the public domain. Conservapedia's Manual of Style assists new wiki users on how to put footnotes in an article. In addition, Conservapedia's Manual of Style shows new Conservapedia wiki users how to flag an article or section of an article which is un-cited."

With a few exceptions (notably their flagship articles Theory of Evolution and Homosexuality) most Conservapedia articles have few if any footnotes.

3. "Edits/new pages must be family-friendly, clean, concise, and without gossip or foul language."

This commandment is adhered to quite well. It has, however, prevented encyclopedic articles from being written about many subjects that concern human biology and sexuality. Conservapedia's articles on human reproduction and sex manage to totally avoid recognizing the existence of genitals, instead focussing on the religious aspects of reproduction. This is accompanied by a talk page debate on the evils of the words "penis" and "vagina".[1]

4. "When referencing dates based on the approximate birth of Jesus, give appropriate credit for the basis of the date (B.C. or A.D.). "BCE" and "CE" are unacceptable substitutes because they deny the historical basis. See CE."

Conservapedia adheres to this one very well, although it is strange that such a minor point would be one of only seven commandments, putting it on par with essential topics such as verifiability.

5. "Do not post personal opinion on an encyclopedia entry. Opinions can be posted on Talk:pages or on debate or discussion pages. Advertisements are prohibited."

Personal opinions of a conservative nature are routinely allowed in articles provided they are not presented as personal opinions, but as facts. Thou shalt not have any opinion except the opinion of Andrew Layton Schlafly.

6. "The operation of unauthorized wiki-bots is prohibited."

7. "Unproductive activity, such as 90% talk and only 10% quality edits, may result in blocking of the account."

Some admins basically admit that this rule is only to be applied to people who make "liberal" edits. The rule is also somewhat amusing, as even minor changes made to a locked article (and there are many) have often involved dozens of posts to the requisite talk pages. This means that a change to an article that should take one edit may instead involve twenty to a talk page (often with no resulting edit to the article), leading to a violation of the 90/10 rule through no fault of the now-blocked editor.

Unofficial commandments[edit]

8. "Thou shalt not mention the FBI." (see Conservapedia:FBI Incident)

9. "Sysops will not argue in public." TK mentioned this in passing[citation needed], a reference to Ronald Reagan's "11th Commandment":Thou shalt not speak ill of a fellow Republican.

10. "Thou shalt not speak of Terry Koeckritz."