Essay talk:A targeted set of reforms for RationalWiki, May 2011

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Hm. Where can I whore garner attention for this? Blue (pester) 02:22, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

;) ТyTalk. 02:25, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Have patience and just let the objections fly in. ADK...I'll snap your loser! 02:28, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Though one point; why have these crats and the LJ as separate things? The problem with the LJ is that it's called up, if waffles, it goes away. This is problematic at every step. 1) when is it acceptable to call it 2) what exactly is it deciding and 3) how does it enforce it. These aren't solved by having a "council" that is called upon, it needs to be on all the time. And as there may be elections in place, you may as well roll it into the crats and minimise the number of elections and layers of crap. ADK...I'll dry your carriage! 02:32, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
The only LJ ref I see is as a model for the election process. I presume it would be eliminated.ТyTalk. 02:37, 14 May 2011 (UTC)UTC
Yes, I should make clear that the Loya Jirga is abolished. Blue (pester) 02:41, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Ah, that's much better. ТyTalk. 02:58, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
It makes great sense. -- (talk) 02:44, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
This is what I have wanted for a long time. I would still regular autoconfirmed editors with a larger set of privileges though. - π 08:51, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
I agree with most of this but I'm unsure about crats. IMHO we shouldn't limit their number to 7 and should demote them using the current crat nomination system. On the other hand, having an election every six months ensures that only those who actually plan to use the crat abilities are crats.
Also, a while back we took away some rights from sysops (ability to edit MediaWiki namespace, bigdelete, etc.), should these be returned, in which case sysops must be vetted more thoroughly -- Nx / talk 10:10, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
I'm with Pi, the rank & file should have some sort of short block (maybe pi minutes or less) and tidy-up powers like page move and so on, while sysops get longer blocks, Vandal Bin ability (or whatever we're gonna call it, that part's not too important right now) and other maintenance-type stuff. The 7 bureaucrats works for me, especially if there's an annual refresh (no elections needed for sysops, of course). As to the LJ, chalk it up to a good try, but it quickly became clear that nobody would respect its decisions even if it made any, so oh well. The concept was overkill for a site this size anyhow. Personally I like how this is going, all that self-important constitution nonsense was giving me heartburn. --Kels (talk) 14:58, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
It is not what I would exactly propose, but it is very acceptable. Only two concerns: are 7 crats enough? Can we keep the fun blocks? --ǓḤṂ³ 15:02, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
When not everyone is a sysop, fun blocks become a bit more complicated. Blue (is useful) 15:52, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
If you restrict non-sysop blocking ability to, say, 3.14 minutes at most, then you can still get away with fun blocks because if you block someone for 30 seconds then it's not a big deal. Personally, I think the fun block thing is played out and stopped being funny a while back, but I realize not everyone is me. Plus, if someone is harrassing by doing successive blocks, the sysops can block them for a longer period to stop it. --Kels (talk) 16:24, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
I find the blocks an easy way of sending messages that aren't worth jamming up a talk page with. That said, if it was removed I'd either a) cease sending messages and not care or b) just put them on talk pages. ADK...I'll admonish your zebra! 17:03, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
There is that. In any case, you only need a very short ban length for that, so I think my idea still works. Besides, it would be nice if regular users had the ability to disrupt vandal sprees for a couple of minutes if a sysop hasn't stepped in yet. --Kels (talk) 17:08, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Agreed, as with a vandal spree a couple of minutes is a long time. It's enough to cause enough disruption to a BON for someone to take more appropriate action. ADK...I'll sell your bazooka! 17:36, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
So, give autoconfirmed users brief blocking rights? If there's a way to MediaWiki that, it seems like a great way to not completely get rid of the current funblocking culture, as well as momentarily disrupting a vandal spree. Blue (pester) 17:40, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
I'd hate to see fun blocks go. let users have 0.π second block rights pleeeez! Totnesmartin (talk) 17:43, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
It makes sense if only for the amusing block based conversations you can have. ADK...I'll mystify your windows! 17:45, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
You guys are missing the point. The problem is that since everyone is a sysop, they can unblock themselves, and blocking is useless. -- Nx / talk 20:08, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
So there you go. If you can give users short block but no unblock, it's useful. Otherwise, just the opposite and we shouldn't do it. the question, I suppose, becomes is the former possible with the wiki software? --Kels (talk) 20:15, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
I don't know if it's possible, because you could always reblock yourself for 0 seconds to effectively unblock yourself. -- Nx / talk 20:17, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
It would be more a nod to the fun-blocks of the past than an actual anti-vandalism tool. For the latter, I would think only autoconfirmed would get the short-block right. And because of what you just pointed out, Nx, it would only be possible if users could only block others and not themselves. Or if you restrict their ability to change block settings. Blue (pester) 20:21, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

By the sounds of it, non-sysops retaining block powers would be a pain in the ass, so I'm going to accept that and say no more joke blocks, block ability would go to sysop and above only. --Kels (talk) 20:27, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

Yeah, pretty much. ТyTalk. 20:36, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Taking blocking rights away from average users makes it easier to break up editor disputes, but harder to fight vandalism. If we only had seven crats to take care of this, there'd be prolonged periods of time when no one's around to stop them, unless we make dispersion across time zones a selection criterion. And a heated editor dispute could also be managed by a crat with the tools they've got right now - desysop, then block. A little more complicated, but also less likely to result in administrative abuse. Röstigraben (talk) 20:44, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Why wouldn't sysops be able to fight vandalism? That's part of the point of having sysops. --Kels (talk) 20:47, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
I guess for reasons such as hiding revisions, et. al. Sysops wouldn't have that option. Aboriginal Noise What the ... 20:51, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes they do. ТyTalk. 20:53, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, but not the average editor. If we're to have 30 sysops or so, this wouldn't be a problem, but then the reform would be irrelevant too. The most heated disputes usually arise between very active editors anyway, so they'd probably retain sysopships and these powers anyway. Röstigraben (talk) 20:55, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Personally, I think the only immediate change the site needs is to reassign those rights and reduce the number of crats/sysops to reasonable levels. Almost everything else we can adopt a wait and see attitude, but I doubt much would need fixin'. --Kels (talk) 20:58, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, but how do we go about doing that? ТyTalk. 21:04, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Pretty simple, really. Put the 'crats in place and they pick out the sysops. So basically we do the crat election right away, they decide who'd make good sysops and promote everyone else to regular user. I would imagine the assigning of rights software-wise would be a trivial thing done at some point in the process. --Kels (talk) 21:32, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
... Another intercom? ТyTalk. 21:33, 14 May 2011 (UTC)
Much as I hate the damned drama it'll bring, we've gotta get this done and over with, or nothing will get done. I say get the thing put down in as simple a presentation as possible, and go for it. --Kels (talk) 21:40, 14 May 2011 (UTC)

Random new section[edit]

So I can see the Table of Contents without having to click a "show" button. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 08:45, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Who decides this?[edit]

Someone seems to be endlessly half-hiding one person's edits, and calling them names in the process, when the decision to call someone a "troll" seems pretty arbitrary here. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:55, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

The conversation was civil until "someone" can along and started an argument, the his sock started congratulating him, so I hid it before it went on any longer. Since the arguing stop it seemed effective. - π 05:57, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Dude, now you're fighting against anarchy? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 08:46, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Mass incivility. If people can't be civil because it is easier than fighting all time then guidelines need to be in place with transgressers. - π 08:50, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Naw, your just a censor. If anyone argues, and you decide a sockpuppet is involved (how do you determine that, anyway? Abusing server access?) you shut them down. How is a discussion supposed to proceed if people who argue have their comments hidden? ħumanUser talk:Human 11:44, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Do you need bigger letters? - π 11:54, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Pi, why are you so bent on destroying RW from the inside out? We should consider taking his root access away. Blue (is useful) 18:30, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
DUDE!!! LOOK AT THE GOD DAMN THREADING... I was asking HUMAN if he was fighting against anarchy now. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 11:48, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
There isn't threading. There is with LQT, but that sucks. ADK...I'll extrude your politician! 18:48, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, there is threading, it's done through indention... LQT was invented because people can't figure out how to use the proper level of indenting to respond to a particular comment. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 18:52, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Really? And what is the difference between what you put up there and a typo? And since the indenting and order of comments is arbitrary (do you put it at the bottom with more or less indenting than necessary or do you put it directly under?) is it a surprise people can't figure out this "proper" level of indentation? ADK...I'll cruise your broadsword! 18:54, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
You use the indention to put the text in the same relative place that LQT puts the message... it's really not all that hard. But then, I guess it is, because people had to come up with LQT to get it all straight. The funny thing is, I've had pages long debates on WP with multi-thread leveling and no one got lost. WTF does that say about the people here? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 18:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I hate to be a bitch yet again but Off topic! Blue (is useful) 18:59, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I'm just saying it's arbitrary and confusion can and does happen. Indenting with a couple of colons isn't a magic unambiguous way of of directing where your comment should go and who it's addressed to. But hey, I suppose Pi is just a bit too think for that. (and an edit conflict too!!) ADK...I'll overthrow your beverage! 18:59, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

"HCM tends to [be] hard on the chickens"[edit]

I lolled. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:48, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

"Users must request sysopship..."[edit]

I disagree. Sysopship should be bestowed by observation, not based on request. Just MHO. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:51, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

And if you're gonna limit the number of 'crats (I think seven is a bit too few, 11 might be better), surely the number of 'sops should be limited too?
Also also, you make no mention of decratting/desysopping due to inactivity. Absent landlords a slum rapidly make. ħumanUser talk:Human 05:53, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
What do you need 7 crats for, honestly with the work load it could be done by one? Sysops can be desysopped when inactive. If cratt elections are frequent enough it won't matter, like the way bi-elections aren't held within six months of when a general election is due. - π 06:00, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
We need 7 crates because they would act as an arbitration body in addition to the crate "workload." Blue (pester) 07:09, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Good point. What "workload"? ħumanUser talk:Human 07:18, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC) If you feel someone should be a sysop, you can also nominate them, and then they can accept if they want. Also, who decides if the user should become a sysop or not? From the proposal it seems it's the sole decision of one crat... IMHO it should be some kind of vote instead. -- Nx / talk 06:01, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes, offer and accept is right. Not ask and vote (for sysop). ħumanUser talk:Human 07:18, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Vote is nicish. - π 06:02, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
The reason I didn't include voting for sysop was that I thought it would take too much time. But perhaps we want to be that deliberative. Blue (pester) 07:11, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I'm clearly for limiting sysops, but I don't think a hard number is a great idea. Maybe put down a number like 15 or 20 (just off the top of my head) to start, with the ability to add more if the 'crats feel it's necessary, or general community sentiment is that there should be more. My thought is that while the 'crats do make decisions and settle disputes, it's not without the input of anyone who wants to pipe up. So it's not like they're a high tower or anything, they're just users with an extra job to do. --Kels (talk) 06:13, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
A percentage of our active user number makes it easy. - π 06:14, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I'm down for that. --Kels (talk) 06:17, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I like the percentage as well. 5%? 10%? Blue (pester) 07:03, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
For a few seconds I thought that link might be useful. 5% crats, 15% sysops, 80% trolls. ħumanUser talk:Human 07:20, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

I found a word for RationalWiki[edit]

Gerontocracy, in that the older users rule over the wiki. I was happy when I found that word, that I thought I would share it. - π 06:05, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

IIRC that's what Occassionaluse has been calling RW for quite some time. Blue (pester) 07:02, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Really? :( I thought I was clever. - π 07:06, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Any way, I want a more representaive democracy. The mobocracy has clealy broken down and the gerontocracy that grew out it is not working either. - π 07:07, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Dude, you have root access, what is your complaint, exactly? You are part of the gerontocracy, if you haven't noticed. ħumanUser talk:Human 07:53, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Beside, I can be part of a gerontocracy and oppose it. - π 08:13, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
For the umpteenth time, PI DOESN'T HAVE ROOT ACCESS -- Nx / talk 08:08, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I have thought about putting that in my sig at times. - π 08:10, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
That is the purpose behind the biannual crate elections proposed here. Blue (pester) 07:13, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Wait! You really want us to elect crates? What kind, wood or metal? Punky Your mental puke relief 07:17, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Hippo. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 08:01, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
That is why I support it. - π 07:15, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Here's the thing about this proposal[edit]

There's one fundamental issue I have with this: we should allow a loophole of sorts for people elected to the RationalWiki Foundation's Board of Trustees to be 'crats in addition to the 7 elected 'crats. My reasoning for this is that, while the RWF is not and will not interfere with the day-to-day operations of RationalWiki, it is a good idea to allow for this exception to the rule so that if, say, there is a legal matter going down on RationalWiki, they can have the carté blanch authority to deal with it in a timely manner and to have the maximum tools allowed to deal with it. That way, also, sysops can be elected to the Board of Trustees and become 'crats based on the merits in lieu having to go through both processes and people already on the Board do not lose some actually important rights simply because they are not 'crats. The Goonie Punk Can't sleep, clowns will eat me! 07:26, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Seems unnecessary as a) there will likely be overlap, b) what powers do crats have that the Board will need? - π 07:30, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Namely, the right (should it be theoretically needed somehow) to hide revisions from other sysops. Mind you again, I'm thinking in a worst case and (mostly) legal sense here. And I know there will be overlap. But I think of, for example, the fact that Eira was elected to the RWF when they were only a sysop. Lord Goonie Hooray! I'm helping! 07:35, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Also, the "Rename users" right should be allocated to RWF members in the event it is unilaterally needed. AnarchoGoon Swatting Assflys is how I earn my living 07:37, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Setting aside my cynicism that you are worried about losing your own crat rights, why can't the board just say to the crats that they need to preform this action of legal reasons? I am sure we won't elect unreasonable people. (EC) Why would the board ever need that? - π 07:39, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Because as fiduciary agents of the foundation, we would be legally on the line to ensure that it gets done. The crats wouldn't have the same legal obligation. Deferring such authority to others without fiduciary responsibility is arguably a failure of trust. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 08:54, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(ECx5!!!!) Well the proposal isn't meant to be all-encompassing. It would make sense to give 'cratship to the Board but they should only use the power if absolutely necessary And shouldn't be a part of the arbitration body of 'crats (unless they were elected to both). It might be less confusing to just create a "Trustee" user group with all the 'crat powers. Blue (pester) 07:41, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(ECs) Since you think I'm worried about my user rights, let me just state that I don't give a flying fuck about them. Hell, I'd probably enjoy this place more (at least in its current state) having no rights at all than as some 'crat. At least then i could resist the temptation to jump into these HCMs, as if I know anything. Punky Your mental puke relief 07:42, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I dunno. Maybe I'm just overthinking things here.... Gooniepunk2010 Oi! Oi! Oi! 07:45, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC)I just don't see why we need to extend crat powers beyond the people elected to be crats. If there are not enough crats around to deal with the emergencies that require their immediant attention, have more crat positions, rather than give it to people elected not to take an interest in the day-to-day operation. I think there is a case to be mounted in keeping the two groups mutually exclusive. - π 07:49, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Then you're suffering from a lack of imagination fallacy. Trustees have a legal responsibility and a legal duty to do something in some possible cases. We can't really defer this over to people who are not under the same obligations. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 08:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
So a Trustees group with the necessary powers would do? - π 08:58, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Have them as two separate groups by all means, but I think the point is that if you've gone through an election procedure, you have the right to some admin tools to back up your responsibility. The crats would have dispute moderation responsibility while the board have legal responsibilities in worse-case scenarios. Both groups need tools to aid their work. ADK...I'll voice your petroglyph! 09:02, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Why not create a crat named "Trustee" and share the password, change it with each turnover of the Board? ħumanUser talk:Human 19:45, 15 May 2011 (UTC)


All seems completely arbitrary to me. What is the reason for such reforms? Because Human decratted someone? Because Nutty insulted Ty? Ace of Spades 07:49, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

I addressed this specifically in the introduction to the essay. Blue (pester) 07:52, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC)Yes and huge arguments broke out, this site is crowded with chiefs who think everyones should be their indian. - π 07:54, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I just can't see user rights as being the problem. Ace of Spades 07:55, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Really, decrat and desysop yourself then? - π 07:57, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
So me dcratting myself stops HCM? Wow, that's fucking amazing. Ace of Spades 08:00, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I am just asking a fucking question dude. I don't want my crat rights gone, I like having the shiny tools but I fail to see how me losing them stops Nutty calling Ty a cunt. Ace of Spades 08:01, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
But... Ty is a cunt. ħumanUser talk:Human 08:30, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Showing a good community attitude, maturity and responsability there Human. - π 08:32, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
And he didn't have to abuse any user rights to do it... so the question is: what is going to stop us from falling into HCM every two weeks even after this is implemented? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 08:42, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
A vein hope that without 50+ crats and 500+ sysops we can repremand repeat offenders without a massive wheel war. - π 08:46, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Your math is poor. We have like 40 crats, if that, and several thousand sysops I think. But I may be wrong. Real numbers, anyone? ħumanUser talk:Human 11:37, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
WTF? You're all using real numbers. When someone starts talking about having (3 + 2i) crats, then you can complain about us not using real numbers. :P --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 11:54, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
There are, at present, 43 crates and 671 sysops. ТyTalk. 11:58, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Here's how it would work: Ty gets offended and leaves. Armondikov takes Nutty to the Coop. A discussion ensues. Bureaucrats weigh innocence or guilt of any wrongdoing with community input. They vote. Nutty is acquitted, end of debate. HCM over. Blue (is useful) 08:09, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
The basic problem is lack of a dispute moderation policy. In my view, when everyone can undo anyone else's actions, there can be no legitimate arbitration. That's why bureaucrats will be like a more proactive Loya Jirga - they alone have legitimate arbitration authority. Blue (pester) 08:02, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
It is very rare actions are actually undone, the bigger problem is getting thwe action done in the first instance. Ace of Spades 08:06, 15 May 2011 (UTC)\
Let's look at the facts of my case (1) I was desysoped & resysoped by the same bureaucrat; (2) you undid that bureaucrtats decision and desysoped me with no understanding of the case (and to this day, you still have no understanding of the underlying dispute); (3) another bureaucrat re-sysoped me; (4) you undid the second bureacrats decision. Your actions were completly pandering to the prejudices of the mob with no effort whatsoever to (a) understand the dispute, or (b) moderate a dispute (and the dipsute already had been moderated). The record of your actions has not been helpful in furthing Rationalwiki's longterm goals. nobsdon't bother me 18:27, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
What the hell have you been smoking? Actually, don't answer that. It's very rare that actions aren't undone. That's why MC and OU are still here. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 11:33, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC)No, my point is we act like they are no big deal, but clearly they are. You probably won't do it, most people won't. Being a crat is about being part of an "in-group", net buddies of the right people. The people who aren't get pushed to the side. The site has fights of who can and can't be blocked, who can and can't have certain rights, all becuase there is no regulated system in place, just personality cults. - π 08:05, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I just don't think rights are the problem. I'll go with the flow but I still need express my opinion. Ace of Spades 08:06, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Because Nutty has the right to call people cunts with immunity, unlike MC who gets blocked for it and then wheel-warred over by one of the site 500+ sysops. - π 08:08, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Really? Is that why Nutty got completely dragged over the coals? Ty is a crat is he not? Did that stop hiim from being abused by someone else or does this stop him from being viewed and called out as the annoying cunt he is? is nutty's stated intention to cause and sew discord as it is MC's? Ace of Spades 08:10, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, I'm not sure Pi's point is entirely applicable here. Blue (pester) 08:13, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I missed the Nutty event most through disinterest, but this place has had too many people with thier hands on the wheel for too long, problems become irresovable because everyone has the ability to intervene. And at the end of the day, it doesn't matter how many people agree, you don't call other memebers cunts. - π 08:19, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Whatever, just stating an opinion. Oh and by the way, Crat's or not Nutty was taken to task by high level user and the same users socks who had no rights. Just saying, rights ain't going to fix much. Ace of Spades 08:22, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
The problem wasn't so much that Nutty insulted Ty (though IMO it was a pretty nasty insult that deserved some punishment) but that he cried like a little bitch when called out on it, pretended he had done nothing wrong, accused various users of trolling him, called for crat action, cried like a little bitch when the crat told him to shut the fuck up, called for crat action by a friendlier crat, whereupon Human came in, blanked his talk page and went to AK's talk page shouting "Wat wos that yoo sed about my ol' pal Nutty?" which led to Human's decratting of Blue. Much fun was had by all. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 11:39, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Just saw this. Nice retcon, Eddy. I fully acknowledge that I insulted Ty. I regret editing his userpage. That was unacceptable. I regret taking an insulting tone on my userpage. That was impolitic. I was wrong to attack him like that. I do find him tremendously irritating but should have found a less passive aggressive way of expressing myself. I probably fail at that a good bit. The part about me crying like a "little bitch" is interesting only because that's the opposite of what other observers and I think happened. You slapped up an obnoxious template something like 4 hours after I'd done anything objectionable, and hours after I began defending myself from people calling me names and stirring shit on my talkpage. Look at the nature of my responses vs. that nature of what people were saying to me. Your edit had the effect I think you intended of fanning the flames. I thought it was improper and was edit warred by someone's sockpuppet over removing it. I asked for a crat to intervene by removing the template and temporarily locking my page because it became the subject of edit warring. My request was also influenced by people like you flocking over to heap shit. I don't even know who you are to be honest. But there you are. There's nothing wrong with a crat locking things down temporarily until tempers subside. I asked for that because I would have jumped in and done it myself were I an impartial crat. I was sorely disappointed in Armondikov's nasty response to me, particularly after he was the first one to post on my talk page that morning by slapping up a bizarre accusation that I'd "finally managed to bully someone into quitting." I did nothing of the sort. I'm not responsible for Ty's behavior and I saw him all over RW and RWW that day. I hurt his feelings. I didn't bully him into quitting. Bob was also typically unmovable. So be it. Making a reasonable request for relief isn't crying like a "little bitch." Human's response to Armondikov was measured. He simply asked a few questions, but was attacked by yet more strangers to the situation. The Me/Ty situation has nothing to do with the Human/Blue situation unless you're willing to credit the immense overreaction to Huw decratting her, leading to his shameful public lynching, as a response to the shitstorm that erupted on my talk page due to me fucking with Ty. I like to give people more credit than being susceptible of being led around by their emotions but after the coup this morning I have my doubts. Anyway, I haven't said much about this since it ended, but since you brought it up in a further attempt to smear shit on me, there you have it. Nutty Roux (talk) 18:52, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

To answer your question, Ace, Blue PIDOOMA'd the numbers to back up the essay. ħumanUser talk:Human 08:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

So, we're purposing these reforms because some people don't like our dispute resolution, and decided to use Schlafly statistics to prove their point? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 08:59, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
That is stated in the essay. The question over our arbitration procedures has endured for a long time. - π 09:04, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
It is stated... "PIDOOMA" == Schalfly statistics... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 09:12, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I was using those "statistics" as a rhetorical device, as I wrote in the same sentence. It should be obvious how much HCM has occurred over the last four years, and if it isn't, or if you enjoy HCM, then the rhetoric isn't going to have an effect on you anyway. Blue (is useful) 18:21, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

This is completely fucking stupid[edit]

I'm going to sleep. Let me know what is decided. I give up. Ace of Spades 11:54, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Holy shit Ace and I agree again. Why have I lost sysopship anyways? Give me my banhammer back, dammit! δijFailed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "":): {\displaystyle ^{}} 13:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Colonel Pi says: "Shut the fuck up" - π 14:04, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Douchess Eira says: "Fucking make me!" (See, it's funny, because no one can block anyone else?) --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 14:05, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Again you've driven editors (me at least) away. Good work, man with ginormous e-penis. δijFailed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "":): {\displaystyle ^{}} 14:08, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I was intending to be humourous. Oh well I will manage this transition period sensibly then. - π 14:09, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
"Go fuck yourself"-humorous. Actually taking away userrights before anything is settled=not funny. Alas, go fuck yourself. δijFailed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "":): {\displaystyle ^{}} 14:14, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Mind you I have no clue who took away my rights, I'm just going to assume it was the site in general and just yell at everyone. Fairness is a virtue, you know. δijFailed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "":): {\displaystyle ^{}} 14:15, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Nx did it through SQL-foo --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 14:22, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Gah, why'd you tell me?!? I wanted to be able to yell at everyone. Now all my anger has to be directed. Anyways, thanks. Pi...I have no idea why but you're actually behaving reasonable on this site. δijFailed to parse (MathML with SVG or PNG fallback (recommended for modern browsers and accessibility tools): Invalid response ("Math extension cannot connect to Restbase.") from server "":): {\displaystyle ^{}} 14:25, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Because about the only thing that has changed is people can't joke block people? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 14:28, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

What's not being talked about, IMHO[edit]

OK, here's my opinion. Putting aside dispute resolution for a second, what really hasn't been decided is what user rights should be held by many people, what user rights should be held by a moderate number of people, and what user rights should be held by a few. Having a vandal brake (a sysop right) available to a lot of people helps RW in an anti-trolling sense; limiting that to 15 people means that stopping a trolling or spamming attack will require those 15 people to be there, which may or may not happen. Renaming rights (a beaurocrat right) probably doesn't require a lot of people to have rights, and might be better if it's not in the wrong hands. I guess I don't see the problem with the sysop rights (blocking, deleting, hiding revisions)being in the hands of many, because they are fundamental to creating content and dealing with trolls etc.

I also don't think users should have to ask beaurocrats for sysopship, unless people think the community is too big to see people's merits. Ultimately, I think you need to decide on a minimum number of beaurocrats for dispute resolution as well, and it might be best to have a fixed number in each case. steriletalk 12:14, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Good point, but I diagree on blocking. You give a user a one day, cool-off block and someone else undoes it. This sort of wheel-warring is part of the problem, it is why we have never effectivly delt with trolling because, for reasons I can't fathom, people leap to the defence of the troll. - π 12:22, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
That's because you should be putting them in the vandal bin, not blocking them. And fewer sysops vs. more sysops doesn't change that. steriletalk 12:32, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I put to you the same question I put to Blue: who are you claiming is a troll? I see a lot of blocks that have stayed in force for a long time for vandals and trolls. So, there must be specific trolls that you're talking about. Which suggests to me that there are simply people in this community that you don't like, and would like to see them shut up and censored. Do they really deserve that just for upsetting you or pissing you off? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 12:36, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I don't think you ever put that question to me. Regardless, "trolls and vandals" don't figure much in my proposal. It is dispute resolution between non-trolls and non-vandals that is most important, for me. Blue (pester) 18:19, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
As a specific example Special:Block/Vagina the user Vagina is blocked for about 3 months and this hasn't been changed. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 12:39, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I think you confuse vandals with trolls. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 12:41, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC)People take them out. And when a troll can earn sysopship by behaving for a week, they can take themselves out. Having fewer sysopships might give sysops a sense of responsibility. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 12:37, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Sounds like the blocking policy or the lack of troll definition is the problem. steriletalk 12:42, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I am with you both there. There is the one particular idiot who used to leave pages of swearing at his target of the week i.e, anyone new that is doing a lot of stuff, usually goes by the names of Roman senators and generals. He has quietnted down now, but he just wants to watch discord, not contribute to the site. - π 12:47, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Trolling policy is difficult, because IMO trolling is based around the intent of the troll, and how are we supposed to know that? Are they just trolling or do they really believe that RW is fast turning into Nazi Germany? EddyP Great King! Disaster! 12:44, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(ec FUCK!) No, for the umpteenth fucking time, on the umpteenth different fucking page about RW policy - the fucking problem is the fucking fact that anybody can be made a fucking sysop after being on the site for 3 fucking seconds. Given that demoting the fuckers when the fuck up causes much handringing and troll fodder, it's THIS that must be fucking tightened up first. Not the number of crats or current sysops. That comes next. Jesus. Do heads need to be knocked together on this? Now fucking get on with it. or do we need to start another fucking policy discussion page? --PsyGremlinZungumza! 12:46, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
This. - π 12:47, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Sigh, Psy. But unfortunately "mobocracy" is difficult to shift because consensus is actually impossible. So unless someone with user rights management goes on a rights-removal spree to kick-start it, inevitably causing a lot of problems in the process, it's not going to happen. ADK...I'll throw your beagle! 12:49, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Right. So
DELETE FROM user_groups;
-- Nx / talk 12:53, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Nx, if I did have server access I wouldn't have asked. Force the issue. Get rid of the crats. - π 12:59, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Well, here was me about to do it manually with 30 user rights windows open at the same time... ADK...I'll exemplify your reindeer! 12:57, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
This gets rid of everything, leaving RW with no sysops and no crats. Maybe we should elect the new overlords first. -- Nx / talk 13:01, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
On the anniversay of the Night of the Blunt Knives, seems almost fitting. SOunds like fun. - π 13:03, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(ec) Oh, and it's the night of the blunt knives. How appropriate. -- Nx / talk 13:04, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
No gods. No masters. - π 13:07, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, deal with the fallout on a level playing field. ADK...I'll exorcise your cob! 13:09, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I believe Human has already mentioned that RA started the policy of sysop everyone after 3 seconds... shall we crown him the Lord All High of Trolls/Vandals then? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 12:50, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(ec again x 3) What does that have to do with anything, Eira?
Oh yes, whilst a demotion exercise would be the starting point - you can imagine the wailing that would cause amongst a certain sector of our editor base. Forget that for now. Step 1: Members are only promoted to sysop, once they have demonstrated a willingness to support RW, over time and number of edits. Appointment shall be made only with the approval of the majority of crats who have promotion rights.
Is that so hard? Then onto step 2- Select a max number of crats - say 20. I'm sure it'll be easy enough to get those - start with those who were on RW 1.0 and work from there. All other crats, demote to sysop. All sysops with less than 1 year, demoted again.
Any problem with this? --PsyGremlinRunāt! 13:00, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
The point being that RW didn't use to be "everyone's a sysop!" That was a unilateral change in policy of one single crat... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 13:05, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
But that's the official policy now, however much you needlessly wring your hands over its conception. @Psy - rights should be based upon more than time spent here, unless you want it to become a Bullingdon-style Old Boys Club. Rights should be based on responsibility and level-headedness, evidenced by past behaviour on-wiki. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 13:25, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Right, that's a start ADK. Now desysop all the sysops and we've got a base to start from. Btw, who did you leave behind to do the promotions? Trent? Because there's none left in this list. --PsyGremlinSiarad! 13:30, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

I've desysopped and decrated everyone but it's not picking up yet due to caching. -- Nx / talk 13:32, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Wow. That is bold. I guess we start crat elections then. - π 13:34, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Suddenly I feel very naked without my trusty "block" button. --PsyGremlinParla! 13:35, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
And who exactly would promote anyone without any crats? If someone can (and obviously is) manipulating the database directly, then who all can do that? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 13:36, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC)Sysops are necessary to deal with vandals, so we need to keep at least a few for now. I don't think ADK thought this out fully, though I still support him fully in doing it. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 13:37, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
ADK didn't desysop anyone... Nx nuked all the sysops, irrational numbers, and ninjas. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 13:38, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Suitable candidates for Crat[edit]

Besides me, of course. (Kidding, for the benefit of the troll kiddies out there)

Depending on how many are chosen, first choice must go to the members of RW 1.0. Looking at this list and seeing who's still active, that would give us:

  • AKjeldsen
  • Bob M
  • Cracker
  • GodlessLiberal
  • Human
  • Icewedge
  • Sid
  • Sterile
  • Tmtolouse

I also think Kels has been here since the start. --PsyGremlin말하십시오 13:39, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

No, that just reinforces that thing I can't spell, I made a section on it earlier. Fresh start, clean slate. - π 13:41, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I will note that the Board of Trustees has already gone through elections to their positions... if they can be trusted with the actual MONEY that RW owns, they certainly ought be trust-worthy of cratship? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 13:42, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Arrrggghhhh. What part of fresh start confuses you people? - π 13:43, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I will also point out comming from a trustee that looks a little suss. - π 13:45, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Considering that the Board could legally dissolve the webpage, and shut RW down entirely, I think the Trustees are already wielding more power than a petty title of "bureaucrat". --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 13:47, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Perhaps the part where nothing done here has changed anything about who the Board of Trustees are... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 13:46, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Well, there was that big stink over human abusing his crat powers.--brxbrx-brxbrx 13:44, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I was exonerated. I did not abuse my crat powers. ħumanUser talk:Human 00:59, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
A group IS its own worst enemy. If you guys destroy the core group, you'll destroy RW. Maybe DogP is right to get out. Anyway, I've been here too long for today. I'm gone for a bit. And I'll add, I don't want to reign over every case of sysopry. What a waste of fucking time. steriletalk 13:48, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I don't think it's the case that we're our own worse enemy; it's just that the group has grown but the structure hasn't. We're the size of an ant but we have the biological structure of an amoeba, to use a metaphor. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 13:52, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC)I reject the idea that promotion should be based on length of service. Of those you listed, I'd only vote for Bob (he should be a shoo-in) and Sid (and Trent has my full confidence and should get whatever he likes). The rest I either don't know or wouldn't vote for. Let's have a clean slate. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 13:47, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Yes. Yes. We didn't burn the place down to build the old one again. - π 13:51, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
With the best will in the world, barely any of the people in that list are candidates if we're taking bureaucrat rights seriously now, as opposed to reverting straight back to defining "bureaucrat" as "someone I'm friends with". New3.pngPink(Is a perfectly acceptable colour) 13:49, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
YES. YES. YES. That is what it became, this is so liberating. - π 13:52, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I'm glad you're enjoying your orgasm... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 13:57, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
By the way, I enjoy wearing men's clothing. Would anyone like a drink? New3.pngPink(Is a perfectly acceptable colour) 13:58, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for restoring sysop rights to people. We were vunerable to a Hagger or Icewedge style attack. De-sysopping everyone is probably a bad idea. steriletalk 14:21, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Consensus? We don't need no stinking consensus![edit]

I missed the discussion where there was consensus on it being sensible to immediately remove most all crat bits. Would someone kindly direct me to it? Nutty Roux (talk) 14:43, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

an explanation of how the Mob works... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 14:47, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I see that it was instigated by someone who is a member of the foundation board and who alternatingly gives a shit and doesn't give a shit about this turdblossom and his role as an administrator. Was this done during a shit-giving or non-shit-giving period, Armondikov? And how can we tell the difference? Nutty Roux (talk) 14:50, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
To be honest I just did it to piss you off personally. But seriously, as we run on a mobocracy - rather than democracy - there is no need for consensus if there's enough weight for an action at the time. We're under no obligation to wait for every Tom, Dick and Harry to chime in on a subject. I did wait, and people have been behind the idea for some time, it's just taken someone with audacity to do it. Also, my status on the board has nothing to do with this as 1) the powers required to do it were available long before I was on the board and 2) I removed myself from the crat list too leaving me with no special position afterwards. ADK...I'll ruffle your cellulite! 14:54, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Yeah, I don't know... Nx did a final sweep taking everything else with him, including the sysops... so even if ADK hadn't done it first, Nx would have cleared out the whole barn... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 14:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I just wanted to press the button. I threatened it when I originally decratted myself and said if someone gave it back to me I would do it. It was given back to me and I didn't follow through, which was a shame. It then came up again and seeing that it was the anniversary of Blunt Knives I took it as a sign. It wasn't whimsical, that's for sure. I had the relevant windows open for quite some time before actually setting away and clicking the button. A "consensus", not that we need one in a mobocracy, for doing that would never have been found. In the end, this is just mob rule destroying itself, not anything to do with any coup instigated by an individual acting alone and without provocation or the consent of people with some extra clout. You will also find that Trent remains operations manager and Nx has server access as always and Pi is de facto leader. So basically I got nothing out of it, and while I wouldn't reject crat/moderator rights if thrust upon me I don't expect them and won't press for them. ADK...I'll enumerate your neck! 15:05, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC) I don't get your temperament, Armondikov. I wasn't trying to take a dig at you but was simply observing that you profess not to care about some things but with others you're not above some petty conflict here and there. I would have expected a member of the foundation board who was also involved in discussing consensus to have some respect for process in general instead of invoking mob rule and staging what amounts to a coup. I don't really care one way or the other if it's actually true that someone can just do whatever he feels like if it's audacious about it and he determines "there's enough weight for an action at the time" as long the community mostly stays intact. I love this website and some of the fantastic friends I've made here. I hope this all works out. Nutty Roux (talk) 15:16, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Like with most things, it'll work out if we want it to work out. --Kels (talk) 15:25, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I've been a plaintiff's consumer and business litigation attorney for 10 years, working in small and medium sized law firms supervising support staff and younger attorneys. At this point in my experience I always wish for the best but have no confidence in people's ability to operate without a modicum of guidance. Regardless of a person's savvy, smarts, and experience, he can always use some direction, myself included. I object to this exclusion of a more robust political process. Nutty Roux (talk) 15:45, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

For the record, I don't want to be 'crat. I'll accept sysop if the 'crats decide it's necessary, but I won't run around weeping if they don't. --Kels (talk) 14:52, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Looks like it's too late now...[edit]

I have been reading the debates these last few days and giving this situation a lot of thought, and wrote this last night, intending to give it some more thought then post it today, but I see it's too late. The same amount of thought and consideration was apparently not given by some people here, before someone started removing people's rights. Anyway, here it is. Refugeetalk page 18:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Reply to "targeted set of reforms for the wiki"

  • The number of bureaucrats will be reduced to seven.

Why 7? Why is this the magic number instead of 12 or 25 or 4?

Is there a problem with having this many crats? Are too many crats running around doing frivolous user name changes or something? I haven't seen it. In my opinion, more crats equal more order in the wiki, not less.

Who would get to choose the lucky 7? And then which ones get told that they are not good enough to be crats, or that they no longer matter?

Each crat was made a crat for a reason. That reason isn't always the same but is still valid. Some do great technical work. Some don't have as much technical ability but were chosen because they have been a voice of reason, a stabilizing force in the face of conflict, and were thought to be a positive influence overall. All crats make good contributions, in their own way.

If one has a title, increased rights, etc, one feels more of an "ownership" of the wiki, and therefore more of an incentive to contribute. Take away the title, the rights, is saying we don't need you here... the response will likely be, ok then, I'm not going to be here. It leads to decreased participation.

I don't want to lose any of the crats we have.

  • Bureaucrats will moderate Chicken Coop disputes and if necessary vote among themselves to determine guilt and/or penalties.

No. Everyone should have a say, not just crats. Why limit it to only an elite few? I don't like this, I don't agree with it. It's insulting to the community as a whole. Another way to mediate disputes could be found, but not by limiting decision making to only crats.

  • Bureaucrats will be elected every six months from the sysop corps...

Six months is too long. Sometimes a person comes along that deserves immediate cratship. I can give a few examples. If a person wants to work for the wiki right away, and can make great contributions, it's ridiculous to say "we just had elections, you have to wait half a year". The wiki-world doesn't wait, 6 months is a lifetime. They may lose interest by then. Why not let them participate now?

Has this really been a problem? Has any crat made someone else a crat that people vehemently disagree with? Have any of them wantonly abused their abilities to appoint undesirable people? I don't think so. There is always room for improvement, but I don't think the system is inherently flawed.

  • Users must request sysopship and will be awarded it based upon merit as decided by a bureaucrat.

Being made a Sysop is not some terrific user reward with an associated pay increase - it's given to people who volunteer to help the wiki. It gives users the ability to help patrol, block spammers, clean up, etc. it's more of an upaid job than a gift.

One thing that makes this wiki unique, that attracted me to it, and that makes it more desireable in my opinion, is the abundance of sysops. It gives people a feeling of belonging. It enhances their caring about the site. Why alienate people by taking away their sysop status? Has anyone really abused their sysop rights, and if so hasn't it been able to be immediately remedied?

I object very strenuously to a plan to concentrate all "power" to a select few. If people are treated as "less than", untrustworthy or unwanted, what gives them the incentive to contribute to this wiki?

I have seen a crat repeatedly refer to regular users as the "rank and file", and "gnomes pushing levers" etc., and find it highly insulting.

  • Sysops also enforce the Community Standards, but must defer to a bureaucrat if there is a conflict between the two.

Widening the gap between "ordinary peon" and the all-powerful crat. Defer? Sounds too much like CP: "No one is allowed to change an Admin's edits!" "Never question an Admin".

By the way, if anyone recalls, I was a crat for over a year, and voluntarily de-cratted myself. (I felt I really wasn't contributing enough to justify being a crat, and wasn't using the extra rights). I am happy to be an "ordinary" user and don't want my cratship back, but I don't like this centering of power to a small elite group. I think this plan would overall be devisive and detrimental to this wiki. Refugeetalk page 18:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)


A true story

I was 8 years old, and attending an afterschool program with a dozen other children my age. One day we were given several boxes of "Lego" toys. We built structures of lego using the instructions, but later, used the legos to make more unique structures of our own design.

We came together and joined our creations to make a large "world of lego". This was something wonderful to behold. It was in some ways strange, some ways terrific, but always unique and creative, from the many varied contributions.

Sometimes one of the kids would make something the rest of us didn't like, someone would object and say that part is ugly or stupid, while others disagreed, and eventually someone would pull off those legos and redesign that part. At times someone would stick pieces on in weird ways. Now and then a kid would come along and smash parts of our lego world just for fun. It was annoying, but we would pick up the pieces and rebuild our world, a little different, a bit stronger.

Then one kid decided he didn't want anyone to be able to "ruin" our world, so he was going to "protect" our lego world from being changed or wrecked by others. He gathered all the legos into a corner of the project table and put up bricks to make four walls around it. He told the rest of us that we could only use the legos in this area, and that he and his two friends would be watching to make sure no one built anything that didn't fit what they thought our world should look like.

No yellow blocks in the red section. No tall towers that are higher than the others. No weird wheels anywhere. No new kids can add to the world unless we say so.

No one liked the restrictions. No one liked being told what they could or could not do or build. No one liked having their creativity controlled. Or being told by a small group that only that group had the power to decide if their lego contribution was "right" or acceptable.

Soon everyone stopped playing with the legos and went to play with other toys, as it was no longer fun. The lego world sat in it's protected corner, abandoned, neglected, pieces falling off here and there, then entire sections, and no one cared about it enough anymore to fix it. Three weeks later, the once amazing lego world was history, a pile of rubble. Controlled and "protected" to death. Refugeetalk page 18:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)


You make super awesome points... the rampant decrating and desysoping of everyone was entirely random and pointless, and has only made this wiki worse off. The answer to most of your points are: some people hate human. They despise him with the burning intensity of a thousand white-hot suns... so much so, that they won't give him sysop rights in this "interm period". That and the answer to the rest of it is: people need their e-penis. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:03, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Hello? Have you actually seen how the current set up works? The fact that "everyone gets their say" just results in a thousand little emperors dragging things out for longer than they need to be. No other successful society in the world operates like this. ADK...I'll curate your REM! 19:05, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Lol, ADK, you're right. We're the only one. And RW is successful, of course. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:05, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
(EC)You've clearly spent a long time working on this, and it's a shame I have to say that my answer to almost everything you wrote is in the introduction to the essay. I can summarize here: Our current structure does not lend itself to dispute moderation. As a result, HCM proliferates. You obviously don't think there was a big problem with our old structure, so there's not much I can do to persuade you otherwise.
I will say, though, that a wiki is not a LEGO set in any way other than both can be fun to participate in, and I find your analogy to be rather apples-to-oranges. Blue (pester) 19:07, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
"Our current structure does not lend itself to dispute moderation." and then "As a result, HCM proliferates." HCM _IS_ (or rather, was) the dispute moderation... but then people can't deal with that. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:09, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Again, if you enjoy HCM, then there's not much anyone can do to persuade you of the proposal's validity. Its purpose is to avoid and contain HCM, because, IMO, HCM is a really shit dispute moderation policy. Blue (pester) 19:14, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Blue: "Controlled and "protected" to death". Refugeetalk page 19:16, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Except the "creative" aspects of this wiki, the tools that can be used to build it, change it, grow it haven't been restricted or controlled in the least. Things like renaming users, vandal binning and autopatrol are not creative devices that people need access to in order to use, edit, write, and enjoy the wiki. Tmtoulouse (talk) 19:21, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Tmt, I respect you, but don't respect how this was done. But you have spoken, so be it, and this isn't "my" wiki, in any part anymore, so good luck, and goodbye. Refugeetalk page 19:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Exactly. User rights and dispute moderation should only be a relatively tiny part of what RationalWiki is. Blue (is useful) 19:22, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
But it already was. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:29, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
We'll see how this new "structure" will work out. My guess is that it's going to spark the mother of all HCMs, not that I could blame anyone for that. Instead of everyone being a sysop and most heavy-duty editors being crats, now we've apparently got a small group of admins that were hand-picked by a few users without any regard for voting or procedure. We're supposed to vote for a bunch of crats that (according to the only stated policy suggestion on this topic) will have final say in all manners, yet we're supposed to close nominations in two days and start voting right afterwards. I've just read the relevant debate pages again, and there's no obvious consensus on any of the current issues - user rights, voting and elections, dispute resolution procedures, so nobody has a clue what their powers and role will be. All of this looks like mindless actionism, not something that was well thought out and had strong community support - if there was some dramatic crisis that made it absolutely necessary to abolish the old system completely, I must've missed it. Setting a precedent like that is not how you establish new structures that are supposed to deal with editor disputes, you'll only end up provoking them. Röstigraben (talk) 19:27, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
"Mindless actionism" <-- this right here. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:29, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Rosti is exactly correct, on that. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:20, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

EddyP's Rebuttal to refugee's commentary[edit]

Ok, I'm copying EddyP's remarks here, because he put them right in the middle of my commentary. It's perfectly fine to make a response or rebuttal to each thing I've said, but not in the middle of what I am saying! Geeze... let me make my points in peace - Comments need to follow my remarks - not be interspersed in my essay - otherwise it's just plain rude! As is customary, please comment after my remarks, not in the middle of them! Thanks! Refugeetalk page 21:47, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Is there a problem with having this many crats? Are too many crats running around doing frivolous user name changes or something? I haven't see it. In my opinion, more crats equal more order in the wiki, not less.

More crats equals more order? More HCMs, more like. We're having more than ever. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Who would get to choose the lucky 7? And then which ones get told that they are not good enough to be crats, or that they no longer matter?

You may have noticed that nominations and then a vote are occurring. And if people are petty enough to take their ball home because they don't get to be captain, good riddance to be frank. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Each crat was made a crat for a reason. That reason isn't always the same but is still valid. Some do great technical work. Some don't have as much technical ability but were chosen because they have been a voice of reason, a stabilizing force in the face of conflict, and were thought to be a positive influence overall. All crats make good contributions, in their own way.

Really? As far as I can tell, half of the crats were promoted simply because one of the other crats liked them. The most recent HCM started in this way. To rephrase your earlier question, who got to choose the lucky user? Not you or I. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

If one has a title, increased rights, etc, one feels more of an "ownership" of the wiki, and therefore more of an incentive to contribute. Take away the title, the rights, is saying we don't need you here... the response will likely be, ok then, I'm not going to be here. It leads to decreased participation.

This kind of goes against another statement you made that said that rights aren't a prize to be coveted. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Everyone should have a say, not just crats. Why limit it to only an elite few? I don't like this, I don't agree with it. It's insulting to the community as a whole.

Who says that the community doesn't get a say? It's simply stated that, if necessary, they will make the decision. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Bureaucrats will be elected every six months from the sysop corps...

Six months is too long. Sometimes a person comes along that deserves immediate cratship. I can give a few examples. If a person wants to work for the wiki right away, and can make great contributions, it's ridiculous to say "we just had elections, you have to wait half a year". The wiki-world doesn't wait, 6 months is a lifetime. They may lose interest by then. Why not let them participate now?

They don't need crat rights to participate. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

One thing that makes this wiki unique, that attracted me to it, and that makes it more desireable in my opinion, is the abundance of sysops. It gives people a feeling of belonging. It enhances their caring about the site. Why alienate people by taking away their sysop status? Has anyone really abused their sysop rights, and if so hasn't it been able to be immediately remedied?

Too many people have the power to do things but don't have the sense of responsibility. Sysop rights never made me feel good; they just made me feel powerless to change things, because I knew that every time I did something sysoppy someone would be there to disagree and undo it, and probably call me a fascist asshole in the process. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

I object very strenuously to a plan to concentrate all "power" to a select few. If people are treated as "less than", untrustworthy or unwanted, what gives them the incentive to contribute to this wiki?

Again, you imply that rights are a prize to be coveted. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Widening the gap between "ordinary peon" and the all-powerful crat. Defer? Sounds too much like CP: "No one is allowed to change an Admin's edits!" "Never question an Admin".

Schlafly's law? I think most users on this site have grown tired of the 'But CP does it like that!' argument. Let's leave paranoia about those in charge to the Teabaggers. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

By the way, if anyone recalls, I was a crat for over a year, and voluntarily de-cratted myself. (I felt I really wasn't contributing enough to justify being a crat, and wasn't using the extra rights).

I am happy to be an "ordinary" user and don't want my cratship back, but I don't like this centering of power to a small elite group.

I got the impression that you thought that people would be devastated if we didn't rush to hand them the keys to the wiki. But you say otherwise here. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 20:31, 15 May 2011 (UTC)


Alright, I'll ask for a reasoned answer here[edit]

Blue, you've stated repeatedly that you hate HCM. But why? The beginning of the Essay only presents that these changes are intended to reduce/eliminate HCM... but what is your real problem with HCM? Did it kill your dad or something? I'm looking for a real reasoned answer, and not an emotional gut response. Although, I suppose if the best you have is an emotional gut response... explain the gut response better than just saying "I hate it". Because right now, I don't understand your position at all and you're just sounding like a hysterical raving irrational idiot to me. Maybe, if I understand your position better and why you detest HCM so much, I can put your position in a proper context, and understand your reasoning. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:26, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

A better question is why you'd like them, given what HCM is. And I doubt that insults like "'re just sounding like a hysterical raving irrational idiot to me" really help get your point across. You probably don't mean it that way, but this mostly seems to amount to "I hate change". Perhaps I'm reading it wrong. --Kels (talk) 19:29, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
insults don't really help get the point across? I'm still smarting from, "you shouldn't be trusted with anything more complicated than a roll of toilet paper". [1] nobsdon't bother me 20:03, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I'm sorry, did Totnesmartin change Blue's name to "Kels"? WTF? I wasn't talking to you. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:37, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
There are user talk pages. -- (talk) 19:41, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
The reason I sound like a "hysterical raving irrational idiot" to you is because I have had to repeat basically the same idea over and over again: "our policies have caused considerable HCM, whingeing, and bickering. HCM tends to hard on the chickens, and as many have pointed out, a user rights restructure in this style may be incredibly ameliorating in that regard."
Why is HCM bad? It's true that conflict is not always destructive. Your position seems to be that HCM is a preferable way of "resolving" conflicts and disputes. Presumably, this is because it is a real community-wide discussion that can result in a real mobocratic consensus. It is a way for everyone to get involved in big discussions over big questions, and the lack of procedures or rules is liberating. Many people have pointed out that the wiki does return to normal operation after a while. No harm no foul, right? All's well that ends well.
Here is the "reasoned answer." HCM is messy to the point that it does not actually resolve any conflict or dispute. Take the most recent Chicken Coop case. Someone threw up a vote after a brief argument and all hell broke loose. The original complaint was never really addressed. (This is not a personal vendetta. I fully acknowledge that Human broke no rules and the case against him was flawed.) But nothing was decided by "the mob" among this headless chicken disaster, and if a single dispute can lead to the complete dissolution of normal operation on the wiki for several days (weeks, now), I submit that there is something wrong with our dispute moderation policy. Blue (pester) 19:43, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
The mob did decide something in the matter. They decided that Human did not deserve to have his cratship revoked. And what is there about the quality of "messy" that rubs you so much the wrong way? The HCM didn't devolve the normal operation of the wiki... ADK did that all on his own, along with Nx taking unilateral action. I would bring them to the chicken coop to demand that they be decratted, but that's moot now.
So, considering that the mob did make a decision in the case with Human, and held a "vote" and everything... wtf? You just don't like the process involved, because it's messy? That's all you're really left with. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:49, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Who are you to tell me what the mob decided? And when I say "normal operation," I wasn't referring to ADK's or Nx's actions, I was referring to the HCM involved in the case itself and the resulting site-policy HCM.
The vote was illegitimate, as Nutty Roux eloquently pointed out. Blue (is useful) 19:53, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
So, your assertion is that the vote is meaningless even though it decided not to decrat Human. Considering, de facto human had his cratship after the whole affair, the mob spoke. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 19:56, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Both myself and Human both argued that the vote was illegitimate. Human retained his cratship because nothing was decided by the original HCM. Have you even looked at the Coop archive? Blue (is useful) 20:02, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
You're not understanding how a mobocracy works are you? What ever happens de facto is legitimate. That's what a mobocracy is... the fact that Human had his rights after the fiasco means that the mob wanted him to keep his rights. (At least one person took them away, and another person returned them.) Apparently you're looking like a hysterical idiot because you don't understand how a mob works... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 20:05, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
You got me. Blue (is useful) 20:09, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
"What ever happens de facto is legitimate"? I'm sure Nx and Armondikov appreciate your support. Goodbye now. New3.pngPink(Is a perfectly acceptable colour) 00:50, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
And if someone else came along and recratted everyone like blue promised she would, then Nx and Armondikov would have been overridden. "Legitimate" does not mean that I support it... it means that I can't argue that it isn't legal. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 00:53, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
And that is the point I was trying to make. A mobocracy doesn't work on consensus as much as the biggest force wins. And that can be many people with a mild opinion or one person with a strong opinion, both are allowed to be equal in a mobocracy where everyone is equal and allowed equal clout - it's up to the individual how much they want to use/abuse that clout. That's the system that is in place and this is the consequence of such a system: it is not fit for purpose. ADK...I'll detect your cardboard box! 00:57, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
I know... but people seem to be trying to tease me or troll me by suggesting that I'm being hypocritical... I'm trying to explain why I am not being so. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 01:00, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
EC It seems very unlikely that everyone will be recratted before we've established some kind of new system. What you're looking at here is the ideals of the mobocracy itself being used to make something that rejects mobocracy. And the fact is, it's completely legitimate, as you said, purely because it's happening. New3.pngPink(Is a perfectly acceptable colour) 00:59, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
And everyone struggling against any change is also just as legitimate. This is what you seem to not be grasping. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 01:01, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Nope. I've never said struggling against change is illegitimate under the mobocracy. I'm just saying that under the mobocracy, they've lost. That's it. New3.pngPink(Is a perfectly acceptable colour) 01:03, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
" I'm sure Nx and Armondikov appreciate your support." <-- suggesting that because I feel that their actions were legitimate that I supported them. This statement is a non sequitur... it does not follow from its premise. --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 01:05, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

A simple way to make some things pretty clear[edit]

All we need to do is have a bunch of people running for crat openly use the campaign platform of recratting all the former crats. If they're elected in the majority, it'll be pretty clear that the consensus is for the things to be the way they were. If their cratships are then removed or all their actions undone, it'll be pretty clear that the opposing crat(s) is/are not interested in the community and thinks they have unilateral power, and we can beat them bloody with a soggy noodle. ThunderkatzHo! 19:46, 15 May 2011 (UTC)

Likewise, if they're elected in the minority or not at all, it'll be pretty clear that the community wants the change. If they try to fulfill their promise anyway, we beat them soggy with a bloody noodle. ThunderkatzHo! 19:49, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Good idea. Considering how silly the situation is. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:50, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Not necessarily. I want change, but even if Bob declares 'No change!' I'll vote for him anyway, because Bob is a gentleman and a scholar. EddyP Great King! Disaster! 19:58, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
Would somebody please change EddyP? ħumanUser talk:Human 02:50, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
If you're willing to vote for someone who completely disagrees with you on your number one issue simply because they're nice, then you need to rethink some things. I like Bob too, but if he ran on a platform of having only one crat in three-year periods, I'd absolutely vote no. ThunderkatzHo! 20:03, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I find it sort of ironic that while so much of this place was set up to oppose CP's way of doing things (even the mobocracy itself, if memory serves), a lot of us are willing to give powers to people just because we like them, which is very like CP's system of "Andy likes you, therefore you're a sysop". --Kels (talk) 20:27, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I think there is a thread on TWIGO:CP right now that talks about how people are predisposed towards religious thought... we're also predisposed towards language, and crony-ism... --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 20:30, 15 May 2011 (UTC)
I only ever wanted to be part of that cool in-crowd. ADK...I'll construct your nitrogen! 00:58, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
I hope you are enjoying it. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:54, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
I don't want to press the personality issue but I would vote for Bob (for example) because I trust and respect him not because I like him. Conversely, there are others here that I like but wouldn't really trust to organise a piss-up in a brewery.  Lily Inspirate me. 08:16, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
That's one reason I made it clear I don't want to be a 'crat. However good or bad a person I am, the fact is that it's not a position I'd be good at. Personality is not ability. --Kels (talk) 14:26, 16 May 2011 (UTC)


I expect someone to make User:Diebot a bot. larronsicut fur in nocte 08:29, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

Done. -- Nx / talk 08:30, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Thanks! larronsicut fur in nocte 08:36, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
And now it wants to become a sysop (to upload pics, edit protected pages & create general mischief) larronsicut fur in nocte 09:10, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Sysops can make sysops. -- Nx / talk 09:12, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Reilly? I tried via Special:UserRights and got:

You do not have permission to do that, for the following reason: Your account does not have permission to assign user rights.

larronsicut fur in nocte 09:27, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

So um... we're just going to let Nx be the default crat? Trent already said we didn't need any crats, and told Totnesmartin to decrat everyone (including Nx) and then decrat himself. Yet, now I see that again, Nx magically has crat rights again. Why does this guy have server access if he's just going to shit all over everyone else? Especially when he has already shown that he's willing to go in like Hand of Goat and shit on everyone's user rights already? --Eira OMTG! The Goat be Praised. 22:49, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

1 bureaucrat, 29 bots, 41 sysops[edit]

Is this intentional? larronsicut fur in nocte 09:47, 16 May 2011 (UTC)

I'm more concerned about 666 active users. World's supposed to be ending on the 21st. Signs and portents...EddyP Great King! Disaster! 14:36, 16 May 2011 (UTC)
Can we lock down account creation? I wanna make the Crhistian critics dance for a while. --ǓḤṂ³ 14:50, 16 May 2011 (UTC)


I've missed all the fun...! DeltaStarSenior SysopSpeciationspeed! 14:55, 16 May 2011 (UTC)