Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

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Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Kelly Martin-3
In Wikien-l, you wrote:

I've already explained this elsewhere, so I'll only give a quick summary
here. Wikipedia does something _right_ by letting everyone edit. The
underlying philosophy is that everyone starts out as innocent, and is
blocked from editing only if they show misbehaviour. Adminship is the
wrong way around. Users start out as being viewed with caution and
suspicion, and must "earn" their admin "privileges" by fulfilling some
ridiculous set of criteria. The _right_ way would be to demote the ones
who misuse it, not to prevent the constructive ones from being constructive.

Have you seen my proposal for adminship?  It's on my blog at
http://nonbovine-ruminations.blogspot.com/2006/10/proposal-for-adminship-on-english.html

Kelly

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
Kelly Martin wrote:
>
> Have you seen my proposal for adminship?  It's on my blog at
> http://nonbovine-ruminations.blogspot.com/2006/10/proposal-for-adminship-on-english.html

Nice. You appear to be going in the same direction as me, but I want it
even more radical. :) In particular, your system still requires people
to _ask_ for adminship (which, again, would be analogous to requiring
them to apply for editing privileges instead of just letting people
register freely), and I find one month a bit excessive. Other than that,
I think you hit the nail on the head :)


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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Gary Kirk
IMHO, it should be easier to get adminship as a) it's No Big Deal(r)
and b) all actions can now  be reversed - and users can quickly be
dysopped. The three month tenure, however, I find silly - if someone
was good enough and behaved well for those three months then obviously
they should be allowed to continue. Desysopping after three months
would turn the whole RfA process into a lottery-like game - "if it's
no big deal, why can't I continue as an admin?".

I also disagree with not allowing users to object to more than one RfA
every three months - Wikipedia is not a democracy.

On 2/9/07, Timwi <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Kelly Martin wrote:
> >
> > Have you seen my proposal for adminship?  It's on my blog at
> >
> http://nonbovine-ruminations.blogspot.com/2006/10/proposal-for-adminship-on-english.html
>
> Nice. You appear to be going in the same direction as me, but I want it
> even more radical. :) In particular, your system still requires people
> to _ask_ for adminship (which, again, would be analogous to requiring
> them to apply for editing privileges instead of just letting people
> register freely), and I find one month a bit excessive. Other than that,
> I think you hit the nail on the head :)
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> WikiEN-l mailing list
> [hidden email]
> To unsubscribe from this mailing list, visit:
> http://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikien-l
>


--
Gary Kirk

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

MacGyverMagic/Mgm
There's a reason why adminship isn't given to everyone. If you do it the
other way around, abuse can cause a lot more damage before the person
abusing the rights get blocked which will result in a lot more housekeeping
to undo damage. It's nice in theory, but it simply doesn't work in practice.

People who get adminship should display knowledge of the rules. If any
newbie got those powers, this would be anarchapedia.

Mgm

On 2/9/07, Gary Kirk <[hidden email]> wrote:

>
> IMHO, it should be easier to get adminship as a) it's No Big Deal(r)
> and b) all actions can now  be reversed - and users can quickly be
> dysopped. The three month tenure, however, I find silly - if someone
> was good enough and behaved well for those three months then obviously
> they should be allowed to continue. Desysopping after three months
> would turn the whole RfA process into a lottery-like game - "if it's
> no big deal, why can't I continue as an admin?".
>
> I also disagree with not allowing users to object to more than one RfA
> every three months - Wikipedia is not a democracy.
>
> On 2/9/07, Timwi <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > Kelly Martin wrote:
> > >
> > > Have you seen my proposal for adminship?  It's on my blog at
> > >
> >
> http://nonbovine-ruminations.blogspot.com/2006/10/proposal-for-adminship-on-english.html
> >
> > Nice. You appear to be going in the same direction as me, but I want it
> > even more radical. :) In particular, your system still requires people
> > to _ask_ for adminship (which, again, would be analogous to requiring
> > them to apply for editing privileges instead of just letting people
> > register freely), and I find one month a bit excessive. Other than that,
> > I think you hit the nail on the head :)
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > WikiEN-l mailing list
> > [hidden email]
> > To unsubscribe from this mailing list, visit:
> > http://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikien-l
> >
>
>
> --
> Gary Kirk
>
> _______________________________________________
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> [hidden email]
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>
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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Marc Riddell
In reply to this post by Gary Kirk
on 2/9/07 3:49 PM, Gary Kirk at [hidden email] wrote:

> Wikipedia is not a democracy.

What is it then?

Marc Riddell


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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Thomas Dalton
In reply to this post by Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
> Nice. You appear to be going in the same direction as me, but I want it
> even more radical. :) In particular, your system still requires people
> to _ask_ for adminship (which, again, would be analogous to requiring
> them to apply for editing privileges instead of just letting people
> register freely), and I find one month a bit excessive. Other than that,
> I think you hit the nail on the head :)

Basically, you are suggest removing the concept of administrators
entirely, giving everyone access to all the tools, and then
introducing a new kind of block that take some tools away from users
that do something wrong.

The system we use for editing pages (the one you think should be
extended to admin powers) results in an enormous amount of vandalism,
which takes a lot of effort to clean up. It's considered worth it, so
we just shut up and get on with it. Using the same system with admin
powers would result in an equal amount of admin vandalism, which takes
more effort to clean up, does more damage, and is not at all worth it.

Also, if adminship is opened up that much, we would have to introduce
a new level of admin anyway to handle blocks (which would actually be
desysopings, as everyone would be able to unblock themselves), and
then all the problems of RfA just get moved to Requests for
Super-adminship, so we have absolutely no gain at all.

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Cheney Shill
In reply to this post by Kelly Martin-3
--- Kelly Martin <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I've already explained this elsewhere, so I'll only give
> a quick summary
> here. Wikipedia does something _right_ by letting
> everyone edit. The
> underlying philosophy is that everyone starts out as
> innocent

This is equivalent to saying existing users have superior
knowledge to new users.  That may be in terms of wikitech,
wikilawyering, wikipolitics, etc., but not knowledge of
whatever articles they happen to be editing.  You're
claiming that the same thing you claim is wrong about the
admin approval, to be suspicious of the admins intent,
reliability, and knowledge, is actually being applied, at
the very least, to every new user.

It seems the ruling policy, NPOV, is inherently suspicious
and it's not really a problem to be suspicious from the
ground up.


~~Pro-Lick
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/User:Halliburton_Shill 
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Pro-Lick 
http://www.wikiality.com/User:Pro-Lick (now a Wikia supported site)


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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Arwel Parry
In reply to this post by Marc Riddell


In message <C1F24F19.16BF%[hidden email]>, Marc Riddell
<[hidden email]> writes
>on 2/9/07 3:49 PM, Gary Kirk at
>[hidden email] wrote:
>
>> Wikipedia is not a democracy.
>
>What is it then?

It's an encyclopaedia. Everything else is purely coincidental.

--
Arwel Parry


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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Steve Bennett-8
In reply to this post by MacGyverMagic/Mgm
On 2/10/07, MacGyverMagic/Mgm <[hidden email]> wrote:
> People who get adminship should display knowledge of the rules. If any
> newbie got those powers, this would be anarchapedia.

Many newbie admins readily admit they don't understand policy or how
to perform most of their duties. They start slowly, and watch other
admins for guidance. How is this harmful?

Steve

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

David Gerard-2
On 10/02/07, Steve Bennett <[hidden email]> wrote:
> On 2/10/07, MacGyverMagic/Mgm <[hidden email]> wrote:

> > People who get adminship should display knowledge of the rules. If any
> > newbie got those powers, this would be anarchapedia.

> Many newbie admins readily admit they don't understand policy or how
> to perform most of their duties. They start slowly, and watch other
> admins for guidance. How is this harmful?


I'm a big fan of enculturation for admins - I've seen it turn admins I
was somewhat concerned about into very good admins.

I need to proceduralise getting new admins onto #wikipedia-en-admins.
Get 'em used to sanity-checking and peer review.


- d.

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Erik Moeller-4
In reply to this post by Kelly Martin-3
On 2/9/07, Kelly Martin <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Users start out as being viewed with caution and
> suspicion, and must "earn" their admin "privileges" by fulfilling some
> ridiculous set of criteria.

I agree that the current process is broken; the criteria are
increasingly unreasonable. One way to address this would be to
whitelist the list of valid criteria, rather than allowing every user
to come up with their own.

Another approach would be an Admin Appointment Board that would
complement the existing process, but follow a more liberal philosophy
and find consensus more quickly simply by being smaller.

I don't like your specific proposal much because I think the constant
re-appointed would be process overkill, as would be the restriction on
objections. Wikis don't scale that well to accommodate processes above
a certain complexity.
--
Peace & Love,
Erik

DISCLAIMER: This message does not represent an official position of
the Wikimedia Foundation or its Board of Trustees.

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Luna-4
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
On 2/9/07, Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>
> The system we use for editing pages (the one you think should be
> extended to admin powers) results in an enormous amount of vandalism,
> which takes a lot of effort to clean up.
>

Exactly. It's bad enough when vandals make giant penises float over the main
page. I'd rather not have random vandals blocking /16s, unprotecting [[Main
Page]] (or even deleting it), and creating other public relations nightmares
-- just imagine the media field day. Wikipedia is already an amazingly open
site, in just about every sense -- some people already say we're *too* open,
and while I don't think I'd go that far, I'm not eager to give too many
people access to tools which have the capacity to do a great deal of harm,
when used inappropriately.

When I consider adminship, I don't think of it as a big deal. It's a useful
tool. Admins aren't the heart and soul of the wiki, by any means -- we are
involved in its upkeep, yes, but I know every minute of vandal patrolling I
do would be flat-out *useless* if not for the countless hours spent by our
fantastic writers.

I think I just need evidence that somebody:
(a) is reasonably aware of policy and practice,
(b) is reasonably dedicated to the well-being and ideals of the project, and
(c) is reasonable, period.

How we determine those three points, I figure is up to some interpretation.

Just my take on it,
-Luna
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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Rich Holton
Luna wrote:

> On 2/9/07, Thomas Dalton <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> The system we use for editing pages (the one you think should be
>> extended to admin powers) results in an enormous amount of vandalism,
>> which takes a lot of effort to clean up.
>>
>
> Exactly. It's bad enough when vandals make giant penises float over the main
> page. I'd rather not have random vandals blocking /16s, unprotecting [[Main
> Page]] (or even deleting it), and creating other public relations nightmares
> -- just imagine the media field day. Wikipedia is already an amazingly open
> site, in just about every sense -- some people already say we're *too* open,
> and while I don't think I'd go that far, I'm not eager to give too many
> people access to tools which have the capacity to do a great deal of harm,
> when used inappropriately.
>
> When I consider adminship, I don't think of it as a big deal. It's a useful
> tool. Admins aren't the heart and soul of the wiki, by any means -- we are
> involved in its upkeep, yes, but I know every minute of vandal patrolling I
> do would be flat-out *useless* if not for the countless hours spent by our
> fantastic writers.
>
> I think I just need evidence that somebody:
> (a) is reasonably aware of policy and practice,
> (b) is reasonably dedicated to the well-being and ideals of the project, and
> (c) is reasonable, period.
>
> How we determine those three points, I figure is up to some interpretation.
>
> Just my take on it,
> -Luna

How is (a) related to your concerns about "random vandalism"?

-Rich

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Thomas Dalton
> How is (a) related to your concerns about "random vandalism"?

It's important to know what is and isn't vandalism if you're going to
not vandalise.

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
In reply to this post by MacGyverMagic/Mgm
MacGyverMagic/Mgm wrote:
> There's a reason why adminship isn't given to everyone. If you do it the
> other way around, abuse can cause a lot more damage before the person
> abusing the rights get blocked which will result in a lot more housekeeping
> to undo damage. It's nice in theory, but it simply doesn't work in practice.

Where's your evidence for that last sentence?

As far as I'm aware, this theory has never been put to practice, so I
don't see how you can make such a claim.


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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
In reply to this post by Thomas Dalton
Thomas Dalton wrote:
>
> Basically, you are suggest removing the concept of administrators
> entirely, giving everyone access to all the tools, and then
> introducing a new kind of block that take some tools away from users
> that do something wrong.

Essentially yes, except that I'm not entirely opposed to the idea that
the admin tools would not be available immediately (just like the
"autoconfirmed" state is not granted immediately). My only gripe is that
the process is not automatic, i.e. adminship is decided by people, and
as a result people are able to (and do) put ridiculous criteria in
place, thereby actively stopping most people from ever getting a chance
to play with the tools.

> The system we use for editing pages (the one you think should be
> extended to admin powers) results in an enormous amount of vandalism,
> which takes a lot of effort to clean up.

I don't deny that some changes to the software would be nice that would
make reverting a user's actions easier. Until we have those, I would
agree that admin vandalism is difficult to clean up, but it's not an
insurmountable problem. Remember we used to have huge problems with
page-move vandalism because it was difficult to revert? So now we have
new features to revert it more easily. The same will happen to reverting
admin actions or mass actions if we need it badly enough.

> Using the same system with admin powers would result in an equal
> amount of admin vandalism, which takes more effort to clean up, does
> more damage, and is not at all worth it.

You have not provided any evidence for that.

> Also, if adminship is opened up that much, we would have to introduce
> a new level of admin anyway to handle blocks (which would actually be
> desysopings, as everyone would be able to unblock themselves),

There are two flaws in your logic. First, if your adminship bit is
removed, how do you "unblock" yourself? So no, you don't need an extra
"super-admin" level to do de-sysoppings, you can just allow admins to do
it. Second, your argument would equally apply to page deletion (you can
publish any crap because if anyone deletes it you can just undelete
it!), and yet admins can all delete *and* undelete and it still works
(because they largely follow a certain policy).

Timwi


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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Thomas Dalton
In reply to this post by Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
> Where's your evidence for that last sentence?
>
> As far as I'm aware, this theory has never been put to practice, so I
> don't see how you can make such a claim.

I think the amount of effort we have to put in to cleaning up regular
vandalism is evidence enough. Using the same system for assigning
admin powers as we use for assigning editing powers *will* result in
large amounts of admin vandalism, that's just simple extrapolation.
Saying that cleaning up admin vandalism will be harder than cleaning
up regular vandalism is a logical deduction, it's not based on
evidence, you're right, but it is based on very solid reasoning.

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
In reply to this post by Cheney Shill
Cheney Shill wrote:
> --- Kelly Martin <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
>> I've already explained this elsewhere, so I'll only give a quick
>> summary here. Wikipedia does something _right_ by letting everyone
>> edit. The underlying philosophy is that everyone starts out as
>> innocent
>
> This is equivalent to saying existing users have superior
> knowledge to new users.

I'm sorry, I don't understand how.

> You're claiming that the same thing you claim is wrong about the
> admin approval, to be suspicious of the admins intent, reliability,
> and knowledge, is actually being applied, at the very least, to every
> new user.

Well yes... who else do you think it is applied to? Clearly not the
admins :-p

> It seems the ruling policy, NPOV, is inherently suspicious
> and it's not really a problem to be suspicious from the
> ground up.

I honestly don't see what NPOV has to do with anything in this thread.
What you're saying is not making much sense to me I'm afraid.

Timwi


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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Thomas Dalton
In reply to this post by Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
> There are two flaws in your logic. First, if your adminship bit is
> removed, how do you "unblock" yourself? So no, you don't need an extra
> "super-admin" level to do de-sysoppings, you can just allow admins to do
> it. Second, your argument would equally apply to page deletion (you can
> publish any crap because if anyone deletes it you can just undelete
> it!), and yet admins can all delete *and* undelete and it still works
> (because they largely follow a certain policy).

So not only do you want to make everyone admins, you want to make
everyone stewards? If anyone can desysop anyone else, then all it
takes is one bot to remove everyone's sysop bits, and we have to wait
for a dev, or steward, or whatever rank is high enough to avoid the
bot's grasp, to revert it (which could be made quite easy, but it
could be a significant wait until someone is available to do it). The
cleanup of the damage the bot has done in this time (or, probably
multiple bots to make it harder to undo) couldn't start until this dev
had been found.

Whatever way you look at it, you're going to need a significant number
of people with greater powers than everyone else, it's unavoidable. At
what level of power you draw the line can change, but you still have
to draw the line somewhere, and wherever that is, you'll have the same
problems with selection.

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Re: Your comments on wikien-l regarding adminship

Arne 'Timwi' Heizmann
In reply to this post by Erik Moeller-4
Erik Moeller wrote:
>
> I don't like your specific proposal much because I think the constant
> re-appointed would be process overkill, as would be the restriction on
> objections. Wikis don't scale that well to accommodate processes above
> a certain complexity.

I get the impression that you did not quite understand my proposal then,
because I don't quite see how it increases process or the complexity
thereof. Under my proposal, RfA would go away, and a process to desysop
(hopefully) already exists and is obviously applied to a vastly smaller
set of people (only those who misbehave as opposed to everybody).

Timwi


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