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User:Blue/RWW/The Great TK Banning Incident

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The Great TK Banning Incident began on 15 January 2008 when Robledo wrote, “Grow a pair. Nuke him.”[1] Moments later the site switched into Headless Chicken Mode and the fun began. Although permabanning seems to be outside the site’s remit, Radioactive afikomen,[2] Kels,[3] and AmesG[4] supported the idea and the voting on his permaban began.

The voting[edit]

Somewhat surprisingly, the voting did not seem to split along the anticipated cabal lines.[5] This suggests that it was not premeditated or controlled in any way but really was as chaotic as it looked. Initially those who called for the vote confidently expected a super-duper majority for permabanning.

Majority?[edit]

As time went on the vote got harder to call (possible due to the vote being changed to random, silly things[6]), and the question of what would be an appropriate majority had to be readdressed as the expected super-duper majority was clearly not going to be obtained. Consequently another vote was called, this time on the size of the majority that would be necessary for a permaban. The suggestion being voted on was, "Will a two to one majority be sufficient?" Of the eight people who voted, four were clearly in favor of the “two to one” proposal and the rest either wanted a simple majority or said something else.

Eventually, the result of the permaban vote was to be 14 in favor of a permaban and 10 against; in other words, nothing like two to one. But by then, the point was moot as the punishment had already been enacted.

The banning[edit]

Even while the voting was in progress various people decided to circumvent the process and ban TK before it was complete. The full sequence of that day’s blocks and unblocks can be seen below.

Furthermore, although the vote was about the subject of an infinite ban, the actual bans for TK on that date were: 314 seconds, 3141 seconds, infinite, 5 years, 143 days and finally 54 days.

The various calculations seem to have been carried out by individuals based on their own feelings at the time, and to have little to do with the discussions taking place on the Wiki.

  • 1: Human blocked TK with an expiry time of 314 sec. (5 minutes) ‎ (Bohdan: Wanted to get one last pointless jab in. You typed something offensive on this wiki today I'm sure.)
  • 2: Human blocked TK with an expiry time of 3141 sec. (about 1 hour) ‎ ("Those who live by the sword shall perish by it." - TK. Apparently threatening.. the entire wiki Or just AmesG?)

(These may have been applied before the process began in earnest.)

  • 3: Kels blocked TK with an expiry time of infinite (trolling above and beyond the cause)
  • 4: PFoster unblocked TK ‎ (Pending consesus - see discussion on Craker's page.)
  • 5: Cracker blocked TK with an expiry time of 5 years (Okay. That's enough. Good bye.)
  • 6 Edgerunner76 unblocked TK ‎ (Unblocking to reblock to comply with policy)
  • 7 Edgerunner76 blocked TK with an expiry time of 143 days (Comform to Fibonacci policy)
  • 8 Linus unblocked TK ‎ (Correct FIbonacci sequence value)
  • 9 Linus blocked TK with an expiry time of 54 days (Fibonacci-1 for time served.)

Fibonacci sequence[edit]

Although the vote was about a permablock, three individuals (Cracker, Edgerunner76 and Linus) seem to have failed to grasp this point and unilaterally decided to apply their own opinions. Cracker inventing 5 years and Edgerunner76 and Lunis going with their own differing interpretations of the Fibonacci sequence instead. It is not surprising that their Fibonacci calculations were different as TK’s previous blocks had not followed the sequence and attempting to retrofit the Fibonacci to the previous random value blocks was not really practical. As neither of them published their calculations it is not clear how they arrived at their figures.

Nevertheless, looking at TK's block history, it does seem as though at some point in June 2007 an attempt was made to start a Fibonacci sequence with these three blocks:

  • 19 June 2007 Jtl 3 hours
  • 16 June 2007 Jtl 2 hours
  • 16 June 2007 Human 1 hour

Later block values were pretty random and varied between seconds and infinity. Some subsequent blocks were also frivolous, were later repealed for being too harsh or were malicious blocks. After a review there would seem to have been a further 10 blocks after the three listed above which were not later repealed or jokes. Calculating in hours that would take us up to a Fibonacci number of 337 (hours) or 14 days if they had, in fact, followed the appropriate sequence. The number of days finally applied - 55 - is not only grossly in excess of this value but is also equivalent to 1320 hours which is not a Fibonacci number.

55 itself is, of course, a Fibonacci number. But if it is argued that the process changed into Fibonacci days at some point, then the fist block for days was this one:

  • 11 December 2007 AmesG 3 days.

3 is a Fibonacci number, and after this block there were a further three “real” blocks before the vote. That would still only take us to 13 days on the Fibonacci sequence.

Conclusion[edit]

  • RationalWiki began a voting process about something which was against the site’s principles.
  • There was no clear idea about how the voting should be carried out.
  • The vote seems to not have properly complied with the secondary vote on the process.
  • The sentence was carried out before the voting process had finished.
  • The sentence imposed was not the sentence that was being voted on.
  • The sentence was arbitrarily changed by some members who didn’t like it.
  • The final values calculated unilaterally by some members were wrong.

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. [1]
  2. [2]
  3. [3]
  4. [4]
  5. [5]
  6. [6]