QUOTE(Cedric @ Wed 23rd December 2009, 8:59am)
...One thing I did find interesting was at 2.40 in the video, he claimed that the recent study that showed a net loss of around 49,000 editors had "significant portions" "retracted". Did this really happen, or is this just another one of Jimbo's many convenient lies or mis-characterizations? I seem to remember the study author later giving some further explanations on how he arrived at the figure, but I cannot recall any actual "retractions" by anyone.
I'm not sure about "retracted," but Eric Zachte's analysis of the statistical methodology
seems sound enough. (There was an interview
by WP'ers too, but I haven't bothered to listen to it.) It was reported in the Wikipedia Signpost
, but Jimbo seems unhappy that all the news sites and blogs that picked up the "49,000 editors leaving" story haven't fallen all over themselves to tell the world how wrong they all were. Hey, welcome to our world,
The fact is, all of this is bullshit.
Nobody knows. Nobody can know
in a system that can have one person create 500 accounts, edit articles with all of them, and then suddenly vanish, or that can have a dozen or more people use the same account for who-knows-how-long. Nobody can know
in a system where 100 separate revisions can be made to settle on the wording of one sentence, or where the initial version of an article can be posted and then not touched for two years. Nobody can know
in a system in which people change names, take "breaks" lasting three years or more, and have large parts of their user edit histories vanish when articles are deleted.
I could go on...
I wish there were a way to slap some sense into these people, but let's face it, people like numbers. Jimbo and the Gang take unfair advantage of that, usually - if this is one instance where they got shafted because of it, well, turnabout is fair play.