Controversy from unclear or conflicting goals of contributing wikipediasts

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Crystal wordprocessing.png This is an essay. It expresses the opinions and ideas of some wikimedians or Meta-Wiki users, but may not have wide support. This is not policy on the Meta-Wiki, but it may be a policy or guideline on other Wikimedia projects. Feel free to update this page as needed, or use the discussion page to propose major changes.

Some examples of controversy potentially damaging to wikipedia that clear goals may help alleviate:

How to Destroy Wikipedia (w:The Cunctator) - an open challenge
How to Build Wikipedia (w:The Cunctator) - an open exhortation
A new wikipediast grumpy at the FAQ (user:mirwin)
The Role of Larry Sanger in Wikipedia

http://www.wikipedia.com/wiki/Larry+Sanger/And+more+old+comments

If anybody knows how to make this link work or where it is relocated (if it is) locally on meta.wikipedia .... any assistance editing is appreciated. user:mirwin

Some of these:

Wikipedia drop-outs

Previous discussion regarding organization

The future of Wikipedia (Kpjas and others)

Several of the above pages are, indeed, the result of people failing to understand what Wikipedia is about and what makes it work. But, well, a lot of it is the result of plain old trollishness, impoliteness, and meanness, among other things. This is not going to go away, unfortunately;

it might go away if you'd read and understand WikipediAhimsa, and then declare that this is to be the standard operating policy here from now on.

new trolls, brats, and mean people are born every day. Wikipedia's goals have been clarified, probably ad nauseam; see especially "Wikipedia policy" but also "Welcome, newcomers" and "what Wikipedia is not" among various other policy pages. --Larry_Sanger

all of which must be failing to do the job, or this stuff wouldn't happen. Trolls, brats and mean people have purposes, too. Among other things, to point out when everyone else is dead wrong, and oppose w:groupthink.

Like it or not Larry, newcomers bring new ideas and some viable controversy resolution beyond "Larry says ..." is useful for large teams. If you or others wish this to remain a small project where you are clear majority contributors, owners, stakeholders, whatever then it is my opinion you should be honest about this and not solicit others work under false pretenses.

Not only "should" they be honest, such solicitation is a federal crime in the United States where rather draconian laws of copyright and racketeering now seem to apply. But I don't see that attitude from Jimbo Wales, what I see there is a general humanism that doesn't want to believe that what a broad consensus of scientists believe in, might well be extraordinarily evil or harmful. The conflict there is between the "Bush League" censoring anthrax research, and those crying "academic freedom" as the "real safety".

If our goals are now crystal clear then perhaps we should proceed to conflict resolution procedures. Warfare in the stacks seems a bit counterproductive to me. user:mirwin

it's childish, at best, but that seems to be what the "no-body party" does - they refuse and marginalize even neutral attempts to discern others' visions and best cases, so I suggest that we fight them by filling out those files with such a broad spectrum of contradictory possibilities that their claim that "we" are somehow "hijacking" "their" project becomes provably ridiculous, instead of just obviously ridiculous as it is already.


See also Incivility, Sources of conflict