Wiktionary talk:Votes/2008-02/Reprimand of User:Connel MacKenzie

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  • I think you should change the wording from "to be carried out by a bureaucrat" to "to be issued and honored by User:Connel MacKenzie himself" since that is what I'm agreeing to - if community regulars here really think it is appropriate. (I.e. a simple majority of non-anons, >50 contribs, type editors.)
    I do not wish to afford you the opportunity to determine when your block will be issued. Maybe a bureaucrat will be kinder, but I must defer that authority. DAVilla
    I trust you'd at least let me know when it started??? --Connel MacKenzie 01:32, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
    That sounds entirely reasonable. You could probably expect it to take place immediately. Please talk to the bureaucrats though. The timeframe is out of my hands. DAVilla 01:38, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
  • BTW, is someone going to start blocking the anon trolls voting early?
  • Please change the duration to one week (or even less, if you feel that works.) My assertion is that it is a very small minority that have intimidated the living fuck out of all regular contributors from saying anything sensible on that WT:BP thread.
    Granted. I have moved it up as well, but can delay if there is reason. DAVilla
  • Wasn't that blow up precipitated by my saying "fuck you" to the coninuted trolling, rather than the "v-word" in response to the initial hostile accusations and threats? Are you sure you've linked the proper revision? (Or are you just trying to be kind? Or saying that nothing else matters, than the "v-word?")
    Yes, the blow up was precipitated by vulgarity, and I would not recommend using it. I guess I've always been too kind, as I usually tolerate your incivility, at least up to a point. Others are less forgiving, and once you've had one block you may find that they are less intimidated. Do try to get a little more relaxation.
    As for my concern, it is the first response, the same revision that Rodasmith linked, that better captures the guideline you have been unwilling to accept, for instance in referring to Anetode's comments as trolling, DAVilla 05:41, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
    which is impossible because he had never heard of you, unless you mean that responding in discussions is trolling? (edit:) you are aware enough of trolling not to fall for it. Anetode did come in a little strong, and at the same time one could make an argument that your reaction was equally as defensive as there was truth in his comments. But I don't like trying to figure out who threw the first punch, and I feel that's really not the point here. It is your threshold of tolerance for new users that I question more, and only that which I believe warrants compulsory action. DAVilla 18:05, 10 February 2008 (UTC) Edited. DAVilla 02:46, 11 February 2008 (UTC)

--Connel MacKenzie 03:44, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

  • Question: certain bot activities that require the sysop flag (defaulting back to sysop account supplied as needed,) might be affected. (Especially Special:Import for w:User:CopyToWiktionaryBot.) Is the intent to postpone those for a day as well, or do you just want a symbolic block for a minute to mark the start time (since it is all voluntary anyway) but let bot activities continue? Or is the whole thing supposed to be just a symbolic witch-hunt, saying that common practice of 6 February and before are no longer condoned - and that the reign of Wikipedia-style trolling (where civility enormously trumps correctness in every regard) has passed a particular milestone? --Connel MacKenzie 04:01, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
    • Question retracted: just read the latest follow-up on WT:BP - indeed, that is the case, that a full 24 hr period of no edits is precisely what is being asked for. --Connel MacKenzie 04:20, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
    • I'll test-block myself in a moment, but AFAIK, all aspects of the bots will simply resume as normal when it is over, catching up on whatever minor backlog has accumulated. --Connel MacKenzie 04:22, 10 February 2008 (UTC) Nothing like an interesting technical challenge - I still don't expect it to gain a majority of votes, but it will be fun to experiment with. Plus, I haven't seen what the block message looks like here, in a long time.) --Connel MacKenzie 04:25, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
      Wiktionary will fall apart without you, and maybe you should temporarily let it so that some of the newer folks will understand the extent of your contribution here. DAVilla 05:51, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
      In retrospect, could we not have just desysopped Connel for a day? bd2412 T 18:23, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
      How about de-CheckUser him for a day?--Keene 18:30, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
      Actually, no, that de-CUing sounds like the dumbest suggestion so far. --Keene 18:31, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
      BD2412: You can do that? I think that point is moot, as I've agreed to "voluntary" if a simple majority can be shown. FWIW, my bot-tests last night indicate that it would be best if I turned off the bots a minute or two before the block, then restart them after the block is expired. (That's why the rewording to say that it had to be a "bureaucrat" threw me off. A bureaucrat can't log onto my toolserver account, nor my home server, to stop the bots beforehand. "Voluntary" doesn't imply that I'd pick the start time, just that I'd honor it.) --Connel MacKenzie 18:59, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
      A 'crat would need to do it. Connel, I can't tell if you're being glib or penitent. I'd withdraw my vote to block you if you would give me some indication that you actually understand what it is you've done wrong. bd2412 T 19:22, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
      I'm not being glib - it is a technical question. B'crats can't de-sysop (maybe they can now?) Please don't change your vote one way or the other - the noise is beyond a feverish pitch now, with at least a dozen side-issues taking prominence. Furthermore, I have only a vague notion of how the initial block was a violation of WT:AGF. Retracing my steps on IRC an hour or two ago, I'm less convinced than ever, that the block could somehow be deemed inappropriate. Lastly, that would be, what, campaigning for votes? I think that really would just contribute to more nonsense and would be entirely unhelpful. If I'm reading that wrong, please let me know. --Connel MacKenzie 21:21, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
      Connel, our role as administrators should be, to the best of our ability, to shepherd potential contributors into the project and point them the way towards improving it. Even people who stop by for childish vandalism may, on occasion, be turned to productivity with a deft hand. bd2412 T 05:20, 12 February 2008 (UTC)
      You only want a simple majority? That seems unfair, and a poor precedent. I would not impose that on you. DAVilla 22:16, 11 February 2008 (UTC)

Something more systematic[edit]

I don't think it makes much sense to put this through the entire VOTE process. This is the sort of proceeding that would be appropriate if we were considering a serious remedy for very serious misconduct, but that does not seem to be the case here. To be effective, penalties need to be applied quickly and consistently to be meaningful to the parties involved. (Take it from a classroom teacher; this is important.) The proposed remedy, however, is neither quick nor consistent; it would take place more than a month in the future and is basically a one-off.

At any rate, given the time and bureaucratic overhead involved in VOTE-ing, I think this proposal needs to include something more systematic. I would suggest two routes that we could take:

1. Establish a "Wiktionary:Reprimand" or similar process, by which a voluntary short-term block can be imposed on any admin whom the community (as a result of a brief, let's say 48-hour, discussion) agrees has both used admin tools inappropriately and responded inappropriately to criticism or requests for clarification.
2. Add a line to a policy page somewhere to the effect that admins whose actions are reviewed by the community and found to have been inappropriate are expected to impose a 24-hour block on themselves.

In either case, I suppose we could include the current matter as a "test case" of sorts. I tend to favor #2, as it would emphasize the high esteem and high expectations we hold for admins. -- Visviva 04:30, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

Those are valid concerns and your suggestions sound reasonable, but they are not established procedure and do not have time to be set up. We could definitely look into that for the future, but for now Connel has already agreed to a shorter voting duration, so that should relieve one of your criticisms. DAVilla 05:51, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
Let's just do this and get it over with already. bd2412 T 20:46, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
How about starting an arbitration committee? DAVilla 22:18, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
Do we really need the bureaucracy? We don't really have a large enough community, in my opinion, to support such a thing or make it worthwhile. --EncycloPetey 22:25, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
Okay. Like I said, I'm not a Wikipedian. But I guess we will need it some day, and it would be better to have the committee in place before we need it. How far off do you think that might be? DAVilla 22:33, 11 February 2008 (UTC)
It doesn't seem to me that our community is net-growing in size (likely due in part to excessive newbie-, and not-so-newbie-, biting). So, it seems like a catch-22: our lack of a system means that we'll never grow large enough to convince ourselves a system is warranted. —RuakhTALK 02:01, 12 February 2008 (UTC)
How do you draw that conclusion, looking at numbers like these? The same annual cycles seem to simply be bigger each year. --Connel MacKenzie 05:08, 12 February 2008 (UTC)
I hadn't seen that page, thanks! It looks like our number of active contributors has been flat since August '06; our number of very active contributors has continued to grow a bit, however, which may be a good sign. (I don't know what kind of bot-filtering that page has or lacks, but I don't think we have enough new bots to account for all of that, so that suggests that overall, our currently active contributors are more active than was the case in the past. That suggests we're putting people to good work. :-) —RuakhTALK 13:03, 12 February 2008 (UTC)
I don't think we need an arbcom (and given the nature of our project, where content disputes are mercifully rare, it's possible we never will). A formal or informal mediation process would probably be useful, though. -- Visviva 07:44, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

An alternative approach[edit]

As an alternative to the reprimand/punishment approach, I have started a modest page Wiktionary:Frequent Problems, which Ruakh has also begun contributing to. This page could serve as a tutorial to newcomers about common editing issues and mistakes, as well as serve as a locus for discussion about how to handle such problems. Right now, it's more of a sketch/outline than a usabel document, but you can see the direction I have in mind. It should not be comprehensive, but could cover the majority of cases we regularly get that need to be addressed. I'd rather see us start aggressive education and discussion of approaches first, rather than proceed directly to punitive measures. I see this document as a place where not only will the problems be described, but also constructive approaches for sysops and experienced users to deal with the situations, including useful templates and boilerplate text to keep the process simple and quick, while still being useful to the newcomer. --EncycloPetey 05:21, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

Can we have a holistic review of all the basic help and formatting material available? I would like to analyze it in terms of the audience that we address. Labels do not apply to all, but we have several groups that we can try to target, including:
  1. Dictionary users who are only browsing our content
  2. Brand new editors who have never seen wikitext or heard of the wiki concept
  3. On-loan editors or converts who have experience at Wikipedia
  4. Translators who have experience in other Wiktionary projects
  5. Multilingual individuals who do not have experience in translation
I believe the blocked user falls under groups 3 and 5.
We must assume limited technical knowledge to make the help content decipherable by all. It would be best to focus on the above at this time, but to be a little more complete, there are also:
  1. The technically able who could read documentation but for unfamiliarity with wiki (e.g. namespaces and transclusion)
  2. Technical contributors such as template creators who need references and local guidelines
DAVilla 06:13, 12 February 2008 (UTC)

Another tangential remedy[edit]

  • Discussion moved here. DAVilla 14:03, 19 February 2008 (UTC)

DAVilla, please see that this section get moved/archived somewhere useful. --Connel MacKenzie 06:16, 19 February 2008 (UTC)

Now moved to Wiktionary:Administrators/Patrol count. Feel free to rename. DAVilla 13:58, 19 February 2008 (UTC)

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