The Wikipedia Review: A forum for discussion and criticism of Wikipedia
Wikipedia Review Op-Ed Pages

Welcome, Guest! ( Log In | Register )

 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> Pondering Wikimedia UK, Good guys and hangers on?
dogbiscuit
post Sun 12th February 2012, 10:34am
Post #1


Could you run through Verifiability not Truth once more?
********

Group: Members
Posts: 2,972
Joined: Tue 4th Dec 2007, 12:42am
From: The Midlands
Member No.: 4,015



Within Wikipedia we know that there are some genuine characters who are intent on doing Good Works through Wikipedia. Others have other motivations. Within Wikimedia UK, I'd assume the same is true. I am sure that some people there are genuinely trying to make the world a better place through Wikipedia, however misguided we might believe them to be. On the other hand, our dear friend Fae has no obvious motivation for engaging in the bureaucracy of Wikipedia other than being a would-be bureaucrat as far as I can see from the profile we have seen from his editing.

What of the others on Wikimedia UK?

Who are the Good Guys, people who that believe that they are doing good works with Wikipedia and believe in the mission, and who are the gamers and who are just there to extract some money while it is on offer?
User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Peter Damian
post Sun 12th February 2012, 11:13am
Post #2


I have as much free time as a Wikipedia admin!
*********

Group: Regulars
Posts: 4,400
Joined: Tue 18th Dec 2007, 9:25pm
Member No.: 4,212

WP user page - talk
check - contribs



Interesting question. I don't believe many Wikipedians are inherently bad, but they are all clearly motivated by a belief and an ideology that causes them frequently to skirt difficult moral issues. I'm sure many of us have been in the situation of believing fervently in the rightness of something and perhaps doing things we would have questioned in a less fervent state of mind, or after the event.

From reading their archives, it's clear that they are all passionately motivated by the 'free culture' belief, and mostly from an 'IT background'. That is, most of them don't have a background in the humanities but rather in engineering or computer science. Thus free culture means devising uploads and downloads etc for getting information available in one place on the web, onto Wikipedia or related projects. My research shows that most of Wikipedia began like this, in particular from the 'borrowing' of the Britannica 1911 edition from another site which had originally scanned it.

Anyway, as regards the members:

Roger Bamkin (chair) is one of those Wikipedian types that live in a small rural village many miles from civilisation (Rich Farmborough is another). Middle-aged, engineering background, pillar of the local community and one of those types who get onto every local community for fighting bypasses, organising local fetes, getting onto the council etc. Actually very valuable people to have in any community. I think a lot of Wikipedians are like this - the basement-dwelling teenage geek is a common stereotype, but does not universally represent the place. The middle-aged UK Wikipedians are more like the type who would have pottered around in their shed or the allotment 30 years ago, but the internet has replaced sheds for this demographic.

Martin Poulter. Graduated Oxford 1994 in philosophy and psychology, should have asked for a refund, then PhD university of Bristol 2003 - that's 9 years of doing PhD, still involved with the university, a bit of a perpetual student perhaps. Like many Wikipedians, motivation seems to be anti-Scientology. Has written article after article saying how very very bad scientology is. Is a member of the British Assocation for Sceptical Enquiry (as am I). 'Rational sceptics' are a big demographic of Wikipedia. I used to count myself one of them, but have handed in my card. Have no interest in the Western intellectual tradition, but rather (as a group) obsessed with pornography and 'pictures of penises want to be free'.

Chris Keating is a member of the Liberal Democrats - another UK Wikipedian 'marker' - so is James Forrester and Jonathan Cardy. Involved in professional fundraising, in which capacity he is also involved with Wikimedia UK. Possibly a fellow traveller, but given his education at Cambridge he could probably do financially better somewhere else, so I don't think money is a motivation.

Andrew Turvey and Michael Peel I don't know much about.

Richard Symonds has been covered enough in this forum I suspect. Unlike the others he is much younger and financial compensation may well be a motivation here. He earns about £25k at Wikimedia UK compared to zero before. Similarly I suspect for fellow travellers like Harry Mitchell. Thomas Dalton (Tango) I believe has a reasonably well paying job.

In summary, mostly middle England types who are motivated by an obsession or ideology, rather than fellow travellers or in it for the money.
User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
lilburne
post Sun 12th February 2012, 12:14pm
Post #3


Chameleon
*****

Group: Contributors
Posts: 890
Joined: Thu 17th Jun 2010, 11:42am
Member No.: 21,803

WP user page - talk
check - contribs



QUOTE
In summary, mostly middle England types who are motivated by an obsession or ideology, rather than fellow travellers or in it for the money.


Sounds like most orgs, I can relate many of those caricatures to members of my village committee. Including the smug twit that put together the village website that 404s all over the place, and thinks he's the 133t haxor.

The IT background though isn't quite correct. Mostly they seem to be systems server monkeys, or the types that generate reports from database queries. Scripting wonks in PEARL, or PHP, that hanker after using something like C# if only it wasn't M$ so maybe a bit of ruby or python. But nevertheless mostly engaged in shepherding someone else's content from A -> B.

User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Peter Damian
post Sun 12th February 2012, 1:16pm
Post #4


I have as much free time as a Wikipedia admin!
*********

Group: Regulars
Posts: 4,400
Joined: Tue 18th Dec 2007, 9:25pm
Member No.: 4,212

WP user page - talk
check - contribs



QUOTE(lilburne @ Sun 12th February 2012, 12:14pm) *

QUOTE
In summary, mostly middle England types who are motivated by an obsession or ideology, rather than fellow travellers or in it for the money.


Sounds like most orgs, I can relate many of those caricatures to members of my village committee.

Do you have a shed?

QUOTE

The IT background though isn't quite correct. Mostly they seem to be systems server monkeys, or the types that generate reports from database queries. Scripting wonks in PEARL, or PHP, that hanker after using something like C# if only it wasn't M$ so maybe a bit of ruby or python. But nevertheless mostly engaged in shepherding someone else's content from A -> B.


Isn't this IT? What actually is IT? What is M$?

This post has been edited by Peter Damian: Sun 12th February 2012, 1:17pm
User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
lilburne
post Sun 12th February 2012, 2:08pm
Post #5


Chameleon
*****

Group: Contributors
Posts: 890
Joined: Thu 17th Jun 2010, 11:42am
Member No.: 21,803

WP user page - talk
check - contribs



QUOTE(Peter Damian @ Sun 12th February 2012, 1:16pm) *

QUOTE(lilburne @ Sun 12th February 2012, 12:14pm) *

QUOTE
In summary, mostly middle England types who are motivated by an obsession or ideology, rather than fellow travellers or in it for the money.


Sounds like most orgs, I can relate many of those caricatures to members of my village committee.

Do you have a shed?



Something like that, but a lot warmer.


QUOTE(Peter Damian @ Sun 12th February 2012, 1:16pm) *

QUOTE

The IT background though isn't quite correct. Mostly they seem to be systems server monkeys, or the types that generate reports from database queries. Scripting wonks in PEARL, or PHP, that hanker after using something like C# if only it wasn't M$ so maybe a bit of ruby or python. But nevertheless mostly engaged in shepherding someone else's content from A -> B.


Isn't this IT? What actually is IT? What is M$?


IT encompasses a lot of things, from operating a spreadsheet, invoking SQL queries on a database and converting the result into a webpage, defining the datatables and relationships within a database (which can get pretty complex for large enterprises), all the way to writing an actual database program like Oracle, postgress, or MySQL. The later though is a job that is mostly complete and the bulk of the IT activities are at the spreadsheet/sql-query level.

M$ is Frei Kultur Kinder speak for Microsoft.


User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Cedric
post Sun 12th February 2012, 3:32pm
Post #6


General Gato
******

Group: Regulars
Posts: 1,648
Joined: Sun 11th Mar 2007, 5:58pm
From: God's Ain Country
Member No.: 1,116

WP user page - talk
check - contribs



QUOTE(Peter Damian @ Sun 12th February 2012, 5:13am) *

Martin Poulter. . . Is a member of the British Assocation for Sceptical Enquiry (as am I). 'Rational sceptics' are a big demographic of Wikipedia. I used to count myself one of them, but have handed in my card. Have no interest in the Western intellectual tradition, but rather (as a group) obsessed with pornography and 'pictures of penises want to be free'.

Given a brief perusal of the content on their website, they seem more interested in exposing pseudoscience, quackery and other sorts of woo, just like other skeptics' organizations. I find it a bit surprising that the ASKE are that obsessed with porn. blink.gif
User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
carbuncle
post Sun 12th February 2012, 3:34pm
Post #7


Fat Cat
******

Group: Regulars
Posts: 1,601
Joined: Sun 30th Mar 2008, 4:48pm
Member No.: 5,544



I think one of the draws of WMUK is that it gives one an entrance to the backrooms and non-public collections of public museums, libraries, and art galleries. That in itself is enough for people with an interest in historic artifacts or the arts. If one were in, say, a consulting business, the contacts one could make in those organizations could be paving the way for future employment.
User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Peter Damian
post Sun 12th February 2012, 4:12pm
Post #8


I have as much free time as a Wikipedia admin!
*********

Group: Regulars
Posts: 4,400
Joined: Tue 18th Dec 2007, 9:25pm
Member No.: 4,212

WP user page - talk
check - contribs



QUOTE(Cedric @ Sun 12th February 2012, 3:32pm) *

QUOTE(Peter Damian @ Sun 12th February 2012, 5:13am) *

Martin Poulter. . . Is a member of the British Assocation for Sceptical Enquiry (as am I). 'Rational sceptics' are a big demographic of Wikipedia. I used to count myself one of them, but have handed in my card. Have no interest in the Western intellectual tradition, but rather (as a group) obsessed with pornography and 'pictures of penises want to be free'.

Given a brief perusal of the content on their website, they seem more interested in exposing pseudoscience, quackery and other sorts of woo, just like other skeptics' organizations. I find it a bit surprising that the ASKE are that obsessed with porn. blink.gif


Sorry, by 'them' I meant rational sceptics generally. No, ASKE doesn't go in for porn.

This is more what I was thinking of http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Porn . Naturally Gerard is a prominent member of that wiki. sick.gif

This post has been edited by Peter Damian: Sun 12th February 2012, 4:14pm
User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post
Cedric
post Sun 12th February 2012, 5:03pm
Post #9


General Gato
******

Group: Regulars
Posts: 1,648
Joined: Sun 11th Mar 2007, 5:58pm
From: God's Ain Country
Member No.: 1,116

WP user page - talk
check - contribs



QUOTE(Peter Damian @ Sun 12th February 2012, 10:12am) *

QUOTE(Cedric @ Sun 12th February 2012, 3:32pm) *

QUOTE(Peter Damian @ Sun 12th February 2012, 5:13am) *

Martin Poulter. . . Is a member of the British Assocation for Sceptical Enquiry (as am I). 'Rational sceptics' are a big demographic of Wikipedia. I used to count myself one of them, but have handed in my card. Have no interest in the Western intellectual tradition, but rather (as a group) obsessed with pornography and 'pictures of penises want to be free'.

Given a brief perusal of the content on their website, they seem more interested in exposing pseudoscience, quackery and other sorts of woo, just like other skeptics' organizations. I find it a bit surprising that the ASKE are that obsessed with porn. blink.gif


Sorry, by 'them' I meant rational sceptics generally. No, ASKE doesn't go in for porn.

This is more what I was thinking of http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Porn . Naturally Gerard is a prominent member of that wiki. sick.gif

Oh, those idiots. Although they proclaim a broad interest in exposing and analyzing the irrational, they seem to exist more as a countersite to Conservapedia. "Rational" skeptics, indeed! dry.gif
User is offlineProfile CardPM
Go to the top of the page
+Quote Post

Reply to this topicStart new topic
2 User(s) are reading this topic (2 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 

-   Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 18th 11 17, 12:18pm