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> Durova block of !! (Nov/Dec 2007) Including backstory on the hidden list, and AC acting on those "investigations"
Cla68
post Tue 12th July 2011, 11:04pm
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QUOTE(InkBlot @ Tue 12th July 2011, 8:38pm) *

QUOTE
From: (jayjg)
Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2007 09:47:17 -0500
Subject: [Arbcom-l] Use of Oversight on Durova's discussion page

Cla68 is an unusual case; a good article writer who is also a complete
and utter troll. He regularly proxies for Bagley and WR, but his other
contributions are impossible to ignore. It's hard to know what to do
with him, but giving into his demands to know who oversighted what
surely isn't one of them.

...


It's a terrible shame, he(Giano)'s a very good article writer. He reminds me
in some ways of Cla68, to be honest, except that Cla68 is malicious,
whereas Giano is hot-heated and stubborn.


In the middle of a complete meltdown, Jayjg goes after...Cla68? Buhwaaah? Did you forget to send him a Christmas card last year or something?


It appears that Jayjg viewed me as a threat to his editing agenda.

Anyway, could someone who has read through all these emails please list the names of those revealed to have been on the CyberStalking and Investigations email lists?
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Abd
post Tue 12th July 2011, 11:09pm
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These revelations from arbcom-l are reminding me that Wikipedia has set itself up to be as stupid as the least intelligent active administrators and arbitrators, rather than creating process and structure to make itself as smart as the smartest. I see again and again in this particularly sequence (where I was familiar with much of the on-wiki situation), that quite good analyses are made. Including by Jimbo, but they are lost in the landslide.

Decisions are made, to be sure, but no sane body of common law, precedent, is set up, with evolving interpretation that incorporates everything that came before and adapts it as new situations show up defects.

Instead, the "precedents" devolve.

I found the discussions about publication of private mails interesting. ArbComm later published private mails because it wanted to make an example of the EEML editors. That was actually illegal. And quite puzzling, since what the EEML editors had done was mild compared to a lot that is routinely tolerated.

Building a body of deliberated precedent is called "instruction creep," and Wikipedia has avoided it, resulting in chaos, unpredictability, leading to huge wasted effort to invent and reinvent the wheel, with, often, no improvement with iterations, since they are done de novo. (The only "institutional memory" is that of current participants, which can be highly limited. Indeed, the more knowledgeable participants from before may be gone.)

"Returning editor, obviously," is still a common argument in sock puppet investigations.

And was it ever figured out who !! was?

This post has been edited by Abd: Tue 12th July 2011, 11:35pm
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NuclearWarfare
post Tue 12th July 2011, 11:14pm
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QUOTE(Rhindle @ Tue 12th July 2011, 10:04pm) *

Is he still in Florida?

Nah, Jimmy's in London now.
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SB_Johnny
post Tue 12th July 2011, 11:20pm
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Malice: this line in post #2 is making the thread too wide (and thus requiring annoying sideways scrolling), broken in two three here:

QUOTE
> > > <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Requests_for_investigation/Archives/2006/11#Centrx_.28talk_.C2.B7_

contribs_.C2.B7_deleted_contribs_.C2.B7_logs_.C2.B7_block_user_.C2.B7_block_log.29_and_Scobell302_.28talk_.C2.B7_contribs_.

C2.B7_deleted_contribs_.C2.B7_logs_.C2.B7_block_user_.C2.B7_block_log.29+>


Only WP admins can open that link anyway.
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MaliceAforethought
post Tue 12th July 2011, 11:24pm
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QUOTE(SB_Johnny @ Tue 12th July 2011, 11:20pm) *

Malice: this line in post #2 is making the thread too wide (and thus requiring annoying sideways scrolling), broken in two three here:

QUOTE
> > > <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Requests_for_investigation/Archives/2006/11#Centrx_.28talk_.C2.B7_

contribs_.C2.B7_deleted_contribs_.C2.B7_logs_.C2.B7_block_user_.C2.B7_block_log.29_and_Scobell302_.28talk_.C2.B7_contribs_.

C2.B7_deleted_contribs_.C2.B7_logs_.C2.B7_block_user_.C2.B7_block_log.29+>


Only WP admins can open that link anyway.


Fixed.
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Abd
post Tue 12th July 2011, 11:38pm
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QUOTE(MaliceAforethought @ Tue 12th July 2011, 7:24pm) *

QUOTE(SB_Johnny @ Tue 12th July 2011, 11:20pm) *

Malice: this line in post #2 is making the thread too wide (and thus requiring annoying sideways scrolling)

Fixed.
Something is still a bit wide....
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NuclearWarfare
post Tue 12th July 2011, 11:44pm
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QUOTE(Abd @ Tue 12th July 2011, 11:38pm) *

QUOTE(MaliceAforethought @ Tue 12th July 2011, 7:24pm) *

QUOTE(SB_Johnny @ Tue 12th July 2011, 11:20pm) *

Malice: this line in post #2 is making the thread too wide (and thus requiring annoying sideways scrolling)

Fixed.
Something is still a bit wide....

Not for me, not now anyway.
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Abd
post Wed 13th July 2011, 12:01am
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I'd never looked at !! (T-C-L-K-R-D) . Wow!

301 revisions of the user talk page were deleted, by Bishonen, making it impossible for mere mortals to comprehend the history.

Whoever !! was, this user took full advantage of the opportunity, then vanished, knowing that the account would be observed. I very much doubt that the user actually stopped editing Wikipedia, the story that Durova drove this "great editor" away is far too facile. Editors are driven away by bad blocks, all the time, those blocks aren't lifted in 75 minutes!

Durova screwed up, for sure, but she'd just drunk too much Kool-Aid. From my experience with her, she was from the better half; as we've seen, the good ones resign, leaving the rest.

I see no reason for !! to disappear, since the only "damage" had been a 75 minute block, with the blocking admin being whacked as a result. If !! had been an ordinary user, a newbie, this would have been experienced as massive vindication, but if the goal of !! was disruptive, then we'd see the resignation, at a point of maximum dramatic impact. Once being observed, the account could not serve much more purpose.

I can imagine certain users who'd have the skill and inclination to set up something like this, to take out Durova. Well-played, if so, though I dislike that kind of game-playing.

I've been socking on Wikipedia, at times, but not targeting any of it to tempt a specific admin into intemperate action. The ones who've been shown to act that way were volunteers who stepped up to the plate. I've been tempted, though, and where I'm tempted, others will bite.

Structural defects.

This post has been edited by Abd: Wed 13th July 2011, 12:09am
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NuclearWarfare
post Wed 13th July 2011, 12:29am
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QUOTE(Abd @ Wed 13th July 2011, 12:01am) *

I'd never looked at !! (T-C-L-K-R-D) . Wow!

301 revisions of the user talk page were deleted, by Bishonen, making it impossible for mere mortals to comprehend the history.

Whoever !! was, this user took full advantage of the opportunity, then vanished, knowing that the account would be observed. I very much doubt that the user actually stopped editing Wikipedia, the story that Durova drove this "great editor" away is far too facile. Editors are driven away by bad blocks, all the time, those blocks aren't lifted in 75 minutes!

Durova screwed up, for sure, but she'd just drunk too much Kool-Aid. From my experience with her, she was from the better half; as we've seen, the good ones resign, leaving the rest.

I see no reason for !! to disappear, since the only "damage" had been a 75 minute block, with the blocking admin being whacked as a result. If !! had been an ordinary user, a newbie, this would have been experienced as massive vindication, but if the goal of !! was disruptive, then we'd see the resignation, at a point of maximum dramatic impact. Once being observed, the account could not serve much more purpose.

!!'s stated reason for leaving was that once they were blocked, it became trivial to link him to his old account, which is not really pseudonymous (and also appears to be in good standing).
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Vigilant
post Wed 13th July 2011, 2:27am
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Delicious and bizarre.

Very few of the posters to that mailinjg list (arbs, admins or regular folk(SLEUTHIN' Xperts)) comes across as anything other than severely damaged, poorly socialized, basement dwelling morons.

In no particular order:
Jimbo - good god what a slimy fool
David Gerard - vile
Durova - "self important" doesn't do justice, smug arrogant and a "pity me" complex
JEHochman - possibly the most repellant of the bunch - amazing that's even possible
jayjg - slimy, user car salesman proxying for/protecting the ever paranoid SlimVirgin (DIE cla68, DIE!)

I've never seen a more dysfunctional group of people in one place. Only a few of the participants would pass a Turing test, let alone standards for human decency.

This is the Stanford Prison Experiment run over email.

Ye gods, look upon arbcom and weep and what you have wrought.

P.S. Merkey please.
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Abd
post Wed 13th July 2011, 2:49am
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QUOTE(NuclearWarfare @ Tue 12th July 2011, 8:29pm) *
!!'s stated reason for leaving was that once they were blocked, it became trivial to link him to his old account, which is not really pseudonymous (and also appears to be in good standing).
If that's true, then the problem was that the account was noticed, not that it was transiently blocked, and the problem would have been drastically amplified by the huge fuss made about the block.

So what he'd rationally do would be to vanish and return again, perfectly okay, supposedly, and I'd assume that's what he did. What I'm wondering at is the parting shots, these are not those of a non-disruptive user. "In good standing" can mean a lot of things. There are highly disruptive administrators "in good standing."
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NuclearWarfare
post Wed 13th July 2011, 3:25am
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QUOTE(Abd @ Wed 13th July 2011, 2:49am) *

QUOTE(NuclearWarfare @ Tue 12th July 2011, 8:29pm) *
!!'s stated reason for leaving was that once they were blocked, it became trivial to link him to his old account, which is not really pseudonymous (and also appears to be in good standing).
If that's true, then the problem was that the account was noticed, not that it was transiently blocked, and the problem would have been drastically amplified by the huge fuss made about the block.

So what he'd rationally do would be to vanish and return again, perfectly okay, supposedly, and I'd assume that's what he did. What I'm wondering at is the parting shots, these are not those of a non-disruptive user. "In good standing" can mean a lot of things. There are highly disruptive administrators "in good standing."

Well, he was before my time, but as far as I know, no one on Wikipedia had a major problem with him. He was in the "Article writers clique" but seems fairly quite even for them; he has been mentioned on WR all of five times.
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SpiderAndWeb
post Wed 13th July 2011, 4:33am
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Poor Giano... looks like even Jimbo has a bead on him.
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Somey
post Wed 13th July 2011, 5:59am
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It's easy to overlook this in light of what happened later on, but Durova's campaign against Alkivar (T-C-L-K-R-D) was really instrumental in creating the paranoid-delusional monster that Durova became for much of 2007 (and I'm hoping that now, since she's been away from WP for a while, she is far less monstrous).

The fact is, the so-called "evidence" against Alkivar was one of the worst, and most classic, examples of cherry-picking and distractionary bullshit we've ever seen from Wikipedia. It was ludicrous, to the point where, at the time, I was convinced they must have thought Alkivar was guilty of something else, presumably something much worse, but they couldn't prove it. So I guess Durova volunteered to trump-up "evidence" of Alkivar "taking marching orders" from User:JB196, when in fact he was doing no such thing - and even if anyone had actually looked at the links presented, they should have concluded that he was doing no such thing.

The facts are that JB196 was a barely-adult pro wrestling fanatic who was trying to spam WP with a book he was supposedly writing. OK, they don't like it when people do things like that - that's fine, good for them. But every once in a while, JB196 would point out what he considered to be BLP violations, nearly always involving pro wrestlers (as though anyone should have cared), to admins who seemed reasonable (to him), such as Alkivar. And every once in a while, he was absolutely right about it. Nearly all of what Durova called "vandalism" in her so-called "evidence" was actually the removal of one or more paragraphs of content that was either improperly sourced, or completely unsourced. And naturally she completely ignored the incidents where Alkivar disagreed with JB196 and did nothing, and focused solely on the few in which he agreed and upheld the removal of that content.

If Durova had tried to pull off this kind of evidenciary mischaracterization as an attorney, in an actual court of law, she probably would have been disbarred - and at the very least, she would have derailed her own legal career. But in Alkivar's case, it's like the ArbCom members didn't bother to check the links at all - probably because there were so many of them. They just swallowed it, hook line and sinker. But the whole thing was, quite frankly, bullshit.

I still don't know what Alkivar actually did to deserve this, but it must have been horrible, at least from their perspective. For a couple of weeks I even suspected that they thought Alikvar was me, except that I couldn't believe Dave Gerard would have gotten behind that idea for even a split second. And in the end, I couldn't believe they would have done that to Alkivar just for being "Somey on WR." I'm just not that hated over there, or so they tell me.

If these leaks - and again, thanks to Mr. Malice for posting them - show anything, it's that Wikipedians are capable, even in organized leadership roles, of some extremely negative groupthink. I now realize that it was enough for Alkivar to have simply "cooperated with a banned user" a couple of times, for them to treat him like they did (though admittedly, they didn't ultimately treat him as badly as Durova would have liked). Nevertheless, I still believe there remains something very fishy here, something they apparently didn't even discuss amongst themselves... at least not via e-mail.

So, while this might all sound paranoid, the question I have is this: Did Durova know what Alkivar's real offense supposedly was? Because if she didn't, then the response she got from her "case" against him must have completely skewed her perception of what really mattered to the Wikipedia hierarchy. And since she desperately wanted to be part of that hierarchy, it was really the first step on her path to Wikiland self-destruction. And certainly the subject matter didn't warrant any of it - do the ArbCommers all get together after hours to watch pro wrestling on Pay-Per-View for hours on end? I don't think so.

Basically, they used her up, and spat her out as soon as the taste of her got to be a little too strong for their liking.

Sorry to go on... mellow.gif
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Cla68
post Wed 13th July 2011, 7:37am
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QUOTE(Somey @ Wed 13th July 2011, 5:59am) *

If these leaks - and again, thanks to Mr. Malice for posting them - show anything, it's that Wikipedians are capable, even in organized leadership roles, of some extremely negative groupthink. I now realize that it was enough for Alkivar to have simply "cooperated with a banned user" a couple of times, for them to treat him like they did (though admittedly, they didn't ultimately treat him as badly as Durova would have liked). Nevertheless, I still believe there remains something very fishy here, something they apparently didn't even discuss amongst themselves... at least not via e-mail.


What would Wikipedia be like now if the !! fiasco hadn't, apparently, busted up the semi-official star chambers of the Cyber-Stalking and Investigations email lists? The passage of time makes one forget how mean and vindictive many of the elite-editors in those groups were, until one goes back and looks at things like my RfA. When I first saw the !! incident break on the ANI board, I remember I couldn't believe what I was seeing. It was the cabal in action all over again, but this time finally caught in the act.
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Giano
post Wed 13th July 2011, 7:44am
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QUOTE(Cla68 @ Wed 13th July 2011, 8:37am) *

QUOTE(Somey @ Wed 13th July 2011, 5:59am) *

If these leaks - and again, thanks to Mr. Malice for posting them - show anything, it's that Wikipedians are capable, even in organized leadership roles, of some extremely negative groupthink. I now realize that it was enough for Alkivar to have simply "cooperated with a banned user" a couple of times, for them to treat him like they did (though admittedly, they didn't ultimately treat him as badly as Durova would have liked). Nevertheless, I still believe there remains something very fishy here, something they apparently didn't even discuss amongst themselves... at least not via e-mail.


What would Wikipedia be like now if the !! fiasco hadn't, apparently, busted up the semi-official star chambers of the Cyber-Stalking and Investigations email lists? The passage of time makes one forget how mean and vindictive many of the elite-editors in those groups were, until one goes back and looks at things like my RfA. When I first saw the !! incident break on the ANI board, I remember I couldn't believe what I was seeing. It was the cabal in action all over again, but this time finally caught in the act.


I could not agree with you more. I don't think any of us around at that time could beleive just what we were reading or that those assuming authority over us were beleiving what they were reading and then acting on it. This incident was a monumantal turning point, but now, reading their deliberations on the matter is almost as incredible - they had no shame or remorse just an unseemly scurry to bury the matter - as they are currently doing on Wikipediat it its resurgence now. I'm unsure quite how far the change has gone. They still have the secret list and deal with matters (the mentally ill and the criminally insane and perverted) for wich they are totally unqualified. It's about thimequalified professionals were employed to deal with such people and the arbcom confined themselves to "on-wiki" disputes. Having said that, I expect certain arbs would attempt to have me declared insane and carted away. They are quite unbeleivable in the way they behave.

Giacomo

This post has been edited by Giano: Wed 13th July 2011, 7:50am
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Doc glasgow
post Wed 13th July 2011, 7:56am
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QUOTE(Somey @ Wed 13th July 2011, 6:59am) *


even if anyone had actually looked at the links presented,[/i] they should have concluded that he was doing no such thing.



You can be fairly certain that no one did look at the links presented. In fairness, one only has to look at the average RFArb page to guess why - no one can reasonably expect a volunteer arb to plough through 90% of the shit that's thrown at them, check the links, and consider the wider context - on an issue that they couldn't honestly care too much about. Who the hell wants to do that regularly as part of their hobby? But how else do they differentiate the well-balanced presentation of reasonable evidence from the stinking pile of biased crap poured out by a barely-literate teenager - when they are under time pressure to vote on ten motions and read 100 e-mails before breakfast.

The problem isn't so much the individuals on arbcom as the system. Any court system would have a screening. Either both sides of the dispute employ a professional attorney to present their strongest case and point out the bullshit in the other - saving the jury/judge from wading through all the alleged evidence. Or there are professional and competent neutral investigators who prepare factual and concise reports for the decision makers to read.

However, I do remember the second of those options being suggested - that clerks summarise the evidence - only to have it roundly rejected.

Unless there's a realistic method for evidence assessment, the Committee are doomed to assess it by the reputation of the the person submitting it in 70% of tl;dr cases. That may normally work - but where you get a Durova - whose reputation (at that point) greatly exceeded her competence - the wheels come off.

How else would you run this system? Short of paying arbs to work 24/7 and sit a competence exam before appointment?

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Giano
post Wed 13th July 2011, 8:00am
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QUOTE(Doc glasgow @ Wed 13th July 2011, 8:56am) *

QUOTE(Somey @ Wed 13th July 2011, 6:59am) *


even if anyone had actually looked at the links presented,[/i] they should have concluded that he was doing no such thing.



You can be fairly certain that no one did look at the links presented. In fairness, one only has to look at the average RFArb page to guess why - no one can reasonably expect a volunteer arb to plough through 90% of the shit that's thrown at them, check the links, and consider the wider context - on an issue that they couldn't honestly care too much about. Who the hell wants to do that regularly as part of their hobby? But how else do they differentiate the well-balanced presentation of reasonable evidence from the stinking pile of biased crap poured out by a barely-literate teenager - when they are under time pressure to vote on ten motions and read 100 e-mails before breakfast.

The problem isn't so much the individuals on arbcom as the system. Any court system would have a screening. Either both sides of the dispute employ a professional attorney to present their strongest case and point out the bullshit in the other - saving the jury/judge from wading through all the alleged evidence. Or there are professional and competent neutral investigators who prepare factual and concise reports for the decision makers to read.

However, I do remember the second of those options being suggested - that clerks summarise the evidence - only to have it roundly rejected.

Unless there's a realistic method for evidence assessment, the Committee are doomed to assess it by the reputation of the the person submitting it in 70% of tl;dr cases. That may normally work - but where you get a Durova - whose reputation (at that point) greatly exceeded her competence - the wheels come off.

How else would you run this system? Short of paying arbs to work 24/7 and sit a competence exam before appointment?


Some of that is fair comment, however, it does not excuse the lies, deciet and pure vindictivess which seems to shine through their debating documented above.

Giacomo
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SpiderAndWeb
post Wed 13th July 2011, 8:13am
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QUOTE(Doc glasgow @ Wed 13th July 2011, 7:56am) *

QUOTE(Somey @ Wed 13th July 2011, 6:59am) *


even if anyone had actually looked at the links presented,[/i] they should have concluded that he was doing no such thing.



You can be fairly certain that no one did look at the links presented. In fairness, one only has to look at the average RFArb page to guess why - no one can reasonably expect a volunteer arb to plough through 90% of the shit that's thrown at them, check the links, and consider the wider context - on an issue that they couldn't honestly care too much about. Who the hell wants to do that regularly as part of their hobby? But how else do they differentiate the well-balanced presentation of reasonable evidence from the stinking pile of biased crap poured out by a barely-literate teenager - when they are under time pressure to vote on ten motions and read 100 e-mails before breakfast.

The problem isn't so much the individuals on arbcom as the system. Any court system would have a screening. Either both sides of the dispute employ a professional attorney to present their strongest case and point out the bullshit in the other - saving the jury/judge from wading through all the alleged evidence. Or there are professional and competent neutral investigators who prepare factual and concise reports for the decision makers to read.

However, I do remember the second of those options being suggested - that clerks summarise the evidence - only to have it roundly rejected.

Unless there's a realistic method for evidence assessment, the Committee are doomed to assess it by the reputation of the the person submitting it in 70% of tl;dr cases. That may normally work - but where you get a Durova - whose reputation (at that point) greatly exceeded her competence - the wheels come off.

How else would you run this system? Short of paying arbs to work 24/7 and sit a competence exam before appointment?


Devolve power. Give RFCs wider latitude in imposing sanctions, including deadminship, with the Arbcom only getting involved very rarely, in appeals. There's a reason the US Supreme Court doesn't try to get personally involved in every dispute between US citizens.
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EricBarbour
post Wed 13th July 2011, 8:22am
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QUOTE(SpiderAndWeb @ Wed 13th July 2011, 1:13am) *
Devolve power. Give RFCs wider latitude in imposing sanctions, including deadminship, with the Arbcom only getting involved very rarely, in appeals.

You have to be joking. You're joking, right?........

Those twits will not "devolve" one tiny shred of the "power" they've accumulated. They will destroy Wikipedia before allowing themselves to lose some of the "control" they have, however pathetic and trivial it appears to the outside world.

If anyone wants to write up the "Saga of Durova" as an essay, PM me. I'll pay for it.
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