Requests for comment/Meta-wiki requests for comment on users

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The following request for comments is closed. No consensus; inactive. Per [1]. --Nemo 19:24, 21 February 2013 (UTC)
Languages: English  · italiano · Nederlands · русский

Problem description[edit]

A recent RFC on meta-wiki was opened by a user after all local project venues had been exhausted, including an appeal to the local Arbitration Committee. The purpose of this RfC is to establish whether such use of meta-wiki resources is a proper one. Is a meta-wiki RFC an adhoc court of last resort where appeals over conduct-related disputes are to be taken when all local venues have been exhausted?

The process for opening and closing a meta-wiki RfC on a user is only vaguely defined. A random sampling by myself found Requests for comment/User:Cekli829, a page opened over a year ago, and still not closed with any sort of obvious resolution. Furthermore, it's not clear at all if the conclusion of a meta-wiki RfC on a user has any binding effect on the local project. This state of affairs raises concerns that the venue of meta-wiki RfCs may be easily abused for harassment, while providing hardly any actual dispute resolution. ASCIIn2Bme 04:01, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

Proposal[edit]

To prevent abuse, I propose that meta-wiki limits the scope of RfCs on the conduct of another user, or set of users, to the following three categories of conduct disputes:

  1. Disputes about user activities on the Meta-Wiki itself.
  2. Disputes about user activities on projects without an active Arbitration Committee.
  3. Global ban proposals. (A couple of these have traditionally been listed under meta's Requests for comment.)

ASCIIn2Bme 04:39, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

Related proposals[edit]

  1. Requests for comment/Global requests committee
  2. Requests for comment/Dispute resolution committee
  3. Requests for comment/Global arbitration and dispute resolution

Translations[edit]

Upon request of ASCIIn2Bme, I translated the proposal (not the discussion) to Russian (see the template on top of the page). For a number of reasons, I do not edit Russian Wikipedia, but I would appreciate if someone could leave a message there (on top of the page), inviting users here to discuss. I volunteer to translate responses here into English if needed. It would be great if other major languages whose speakers are likely not to be fluent in English could be served in a similar way.--Ymblanter 14:59, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

I've informed the Dutch users. Mathonius 18:19, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Hartelijk bedankt.--Ymblanter 18:36, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
Italian translation added. Cheers. Salvio Let's talk about it! 19:37, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Arguments[edit]

For proposal[edit]

  • Support. Meta's own Arbitration Committee page says ArbComs (on projects that have them) are the "last step" in dispute resolution. This exact phrase has been present since the very first version of that page, in 2006. That shows that there is a long understanding on Meta that project-specific ArbComs are the the end of the road. There can only be one last step, and we should not be adding Meta RFCs after that step. Superm401 | Talk 04:29, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    • N.B.: after looking further back at Requests for comments, I saw a couple of global bans listed there, so I've added them to the proposed scope. Before 2010 there was no specific "users" category for Meta-wiki RfCs, but I suppose those past global ban proposal qualify as such. ASCIIn2Bme 04:41, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support let's not provide yet another venue for shopping and wiki lawyering. Arbitration is the last stop in dispute resolution. Jehochman 05:08, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • support. Meta is for meta-issues, not the rehashing of wiki-specific arguments. Ironholds 05:16, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    • Welcome to meta wiki, a coordination wiki of Wikimedia projects. That´s what meta is. --WizardOfOz talk 07:47, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support - Serial abusers of the system, trolls, sockmasters, relentless POV warriors, systemic vandals and anyone else who has been blocked and/or banned at the local level can be dealt with at the local level. Providing people with yet another venue to beat dead horses and engage in disruption, or even harrassment, is not productive. This isn't an appelate court. Night Ranger 05:20, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support, but reword point two. Having a "committee" doesn't really control whether a project can resolve disputes. A Meta discussion should be allowed to evaluate overall whether a Wiki's dispute resolution mechanisms are functional or not, with an eye toward documenting the need for some kind of overall reset of the adminship from the Foundation level. It shouldn't be used to make decisions on individual cases of abuse there. With some (any) kind of working adminship the small wiki should be able to do that on its own. Wnt 07:38, 11 February 2012 (UTC) I also agree with SpinningSpark's that this should not be taken to rule out discussion of entire wikis or their processes - I take "group of users" above to mean an arbitrary list of Wiki users, not the entire Wiki or an entire Arbitration Committee. Wnt (talk) 16:16, 22 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support to prevent continuing disputes resolved at the local level continuing here. Sandstein 07:57, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

*Support At least for en:wikipedia. There is robust conduct resolution, RfC procedures, unblock procedures, etc. there, and these should be respected. I don't feel qualified to speak about other projects, as I only contribute to Commons. But the other projects should generally argue for themselves whether they want this arguably useless and/or harmful forum, perhaps it can be useful to them. Alanscottwalker 12:05, 11 February 2012 (UTC) (see below).

  • Support I support this proposal, although I will not vote on the banning proposal currently underway at the English Wikipedia for an editor (I was just unblocked recently and don't want to immediately become involved in that area). I feel that as the largest Wikimedia project by far, English Wikipedia should deal with its own problems and own problem editors and that meta should not be providing a soapbox for banned editors to engage in grudge matches against administrators who rightfully blocked them. This whole thing reeks of forum shopping. The Garbage Skow 15:26, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    How do you know that Gwen Gale "rightfully blocked" any editor mentioned in this RFC? Have you read the evidences? Do you have anything at all to say about the evidences? So far the only user, who talked about the evidences was this one, and as you see he cowardly ignored my question after he was proven 100% wrong.--Mbz1 16:54, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support Banned or indef blocked users at en.wp have a final avenue of appeal already, they can contact the ban appeals subcommittee by email. The problem here is that Mbz can't get over the fact that their endless crybaby tactics are not having the desired effect despite the fact that in addition to contacting ArbCom and opening this silly discussion here they have also emailed dozens of users and mailing lists. We don't need another forum for this stupidity to continue, the reason ArbCom rejected it is because it doesn't merit any more attention, Mbz just needs to go away already. Meta can't overturn local ArbCom decisions so any such RFC is completely toothless, whether we allow them here or not. Beeblebrox 18:51, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support - This strange little wiki-fiefdom needs to be corralled a bit. Tarc 20:55, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support, As per Wnt 07:38, 11 February 2012 (UTC) A Meta discussion should be allowed to evaluate overall whether a Wiki's dispute resolution mechanisms are functional or not, and shouldn't be used to make decisions on individual cases. With some (any) kind of working adminship the small wiki should be able to do that on its own. Newbyguesses 21:01, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support, with a few reservations about possible tweaks (e.g. consider including interpersonal conflicts where the intended outcome is not a global ban, but where the conflict has had a strongly cross-project nature, making dispute resolution on any one single project problematic. I'm also not entirely certain about the "no-local-Arbcom" clause). But I certainly agree with the overall direction of this proposal: Meta RfCs are not meant to be a "court of appeals" for individual local conflicts, and they are not a venue for letting banned users simply vent their anger (i.e. "the last place for free representation of banned users", as somebody put it below). Fut.Perf. 21:40, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support without reservation. meta should not be used to rehash user disputes where the Arbitration Committee on the primary project concerned has considered the matter closed. If there is a problem with the Arbitration Committee on a project, *that* is a valid topic for a meta RFC. John Vandenberg 01:35, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support. I believe John Vandenberg puts the case very well. 28bytes 05:39, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support per JVdb and FPAS. It is incorrect to state that the last place of appeal for banned users on other projects is here, since on en.wikipedia there is a bans appeal subcommitee for that express purpose. No comparable structures exist here. Meta itself should be open to more scrutiny in view of recent events. It is true that appeals for a ban to be rescinded can point to good work on other projects: the edits of Mbz1 do not appear to have been made as steps in that direction. Mathsci 08:47, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support Meta isn't the place to carry on local disputes. I will be heading out the door if meta decides that they can over rule local arbcoms --Guerillero 05:21, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
    Who says Meta was ever going to over rule something? It looks like this is another way around. It is English wikipedia that wants to dictate their policies to meta. Besides one of the cases from the RFC involves Meta, Commons and English wikipedia.--Mbz1 05:44, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Conditional support After thinking about it some more, it seems that my arguments are pretty much more in support than in opposition to the RfC. My main concern is that Meta remain an escape valve, but there does not have to be an official RfC for the mechanism to work. If something is so broken as to prevent dispute resolution from working on a local project because of simultaneous abuse and censorship by that project, letting the Meta community, and in specific the stewards, know is the proper venue, not an RfC. Furthermore, what is going on here with Mbz's campaigns illustrates the potential, or actual, abuse of Meta better than any allegory I could pen. Reiterating my thoughts below to an extent, the way the RfC guidance is currently written, RfCs about disputes on other projects are not allowed if they have been resolved on those projects. "Resolved" does not mean "everybody is happy." Most of the time, at least one party to a dispute will be unhappy with any resolution. "Resolved" means that the dispute resolution processes, whatever they may be on any given project, have been followed, and a ruling/consensus/closure/whatever the case may be has been handed down. Those cases are already excluded from being the subject of a Meta RfC. Even if there is the complaint of the dispute resolution was biased or in violation of the local project's policies and guidelines (which may be different from our own here in Meta), that should be handled locally as well. In the rare cases where there seems to be systemic control, if not censorship, by the group in control of the dispute resolution process over the majority who are complaining, merely informing concerned wikimedians, and specifically the stewards, of potential abuse is sufficient. Of course, dispute resolution for projects which have no real process is the purview of Meta, so I agree with that point as well, and would support point 2 with the proviso that in a true emergency, we work to protect wikimedia projects and their members, and not get bogged down in bureaucracy. However, we should not let Meta violate local project guidelines any more than we would want them to violate ours. On projects where dispute resolution processes, such as Arbitration committees, exits, those are the venues for dispute resolution on those projects. Even accusations of bias of unfairness in the application of such a ruling belongs on the local project, so long as the local community is not being "silenced" and prevented from speaking their minds athrough blocks, bans, or fear of such. This does not mean when one person's or even multiple persons' actions were deemed to be in such violation of policies that they have been banned, it means a systemic culture preventing ANYONE from voicing opposition to the rulings of the Arbcom or dispute resolution process. As an aside, it is clear that EnWiki does not suffer from such censorship; their ArbCom is subject to constant scrutiny, review, and criticism. I believe that Meta should be used when disputes on local projects go unresolved, due to lack of process or systemic failure of process. Dislike of resolution is no excuse to try an "end-around" on Meta, and such attempts should be closed as a violation of Meta policies. -- Avi 06:28, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support - While I'm sure that Meta serves a useful function for smaller wikis with little infrastructure and few resources, the idea that it can act as a "supra-wiki" to Wikipedias with a highly-developed governance system, such as en.wiki, is ridiculous. Either Meta-wiki needs to seriously re-think its role in regards to those wikis, or it will become necessary for those wikis to petition the WMF to drastically limit Meta's purview. Further, that Meta has allowed itself to become a haven for banned en.wiki editors, not to show their value by editing productively (Edit what? Meta-wiki has no attached encycylopedia.), but to continue proseltyzing their cause is shameful, and, if not corrected quickly, worthy of the dissolution of Meta and the assignment of its cross-wiki functions to a new organization, with severely limited scope. Beyond My Ken 09:41, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support - Per Avi. The RfC served no purpose relevant to the Project, as seen in it's closure message. It is only a vehicle then for defamation, character assassination, or harassment. It further seeks to undermine a sister project's conduct and dispute resolution. Such should not be allowed, as it harmful to indivduals, unduly contentious, and can only bring this Project into disrepute. Alanscottwalker 13:07, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support Per Beyond My Ken...exactly right.--MONGO 13:12, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support Always thought this was the case to begin with. -Djsasso 20:14, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support Per Beyond My Ken, Avi, and most recent reasoning of Allanscottwalker. In case it is not clear enough, I am saying that RFCs from users banned or blocked from projects that already have multiple levels of oversight (like those involved in the case at hand) should be vetted carefully before being hosted at Meta. With no opinion on the case that led to this "Meta-RFC", the current practice is not ideal.UnbelievableError 06:08, 14 February 2012 (UTC) (Thought I signed the first time)
    Could you please clarify how could they be vetted before being posted? Thanks, Nemo 12:44, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
    Well in principle, they could be vetted by some kind of email process by an appropriate committee, say. But probably UnbelievableError was more thinking more of how the en.wp RFC/U works, where a draft RFC/U needs certification by others before it becomes "official". Rd232 20:24, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support; meta doesn't need to turn into another version of Wikiversity, which now is little more than an echo chamber where en-wiki banned users try to refight the battles they lost there. One WMF sponsored site like that is quite enough. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 14:46, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support; Meta is the last place to find official support when you have a 'personal' disagreement on project X being e.g. German Wikipedia. First try to get consensus there. No language problem etc. If you keep having problems it might very well be your own fault. Likely due to the fact you're not too familiar with German culture. Going to project Y not even in the German language is pointless. ZeaForUs 16:09, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support with reservations about point 2, as the proposal clarifies what Meta RFCs are for, which is badly needed. Point 2 is fine if one assumes that ArbComs always work well enough; which is a questionable assumption. So I'd take point 2 as an interim measure, but look to develop some way that allows external review of local dispute resolution. Such review needs to be similarly formal to the local dispute resolution procedures, and needs to link sensibly with them, and with the local wiki community. And reviews should focus on failures of process, with a view to learning something that will help improve the local process. Meta RFCs should aim to supplement, support and improve local dispute resolution, not supplant it (except possibly for wikis who want to use Meta as a normal part of their dispute resolution, but that's a whole other story). Rd232 19:31, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support broadly. Meta's ability to hear disputes (whether via RfC or another route) should operate in a similar way to the global sysop process. That is, a project should opt in (or out, depending on how the process works) of the dispute resolution process based on having a functioning dispute resolution process of its own. Once opted out there would be no "right of appeal" elsewhere (this is a well tried model both in WMF projects and in the real world - the former British dependencies in respect of the Privy Council as a court of last appeal being one example). The list of "opted out" projects would clearly include any with an ArbCom but may be broader. I think there's an element of unfairness in some of the commentary here. Meta is meta. A meta project and a meta community too. There are very few people who are active here and nowhere else. This means there isn't really a large community or well defined standards of behaviour. We all tend to bring the "norms" from our home projects to our contributions here. It's a small community and has nothing like the scale of en.wp so no need for that project's rigid adherence to process and ways of working. As a consequence it was ill equipped to handle this problem - as any small project would be - and a little patience with this "immaturity" is needed QU TalkQu 20:23, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support. Meta has been "caretaker of the baby wikis" for many, many years, and that should clearly continue. However the mature and well-established wikis (EN, DE, ES, FR, etc) have long since outgrown the need for Meta's assistance - many editors in those wikis are unaware that Meta even exists. Running an RFC on Meta about an EN-WP issue makes about as much sense as running it on DE or FR. Manning (talk) 03:18, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
    Your "baby wiki"-comment is about as arrogant and condescending as it can get. Seb az86556 (talk) 05:25, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
    Forgive me, Seb, but I really think you may have taken Manning's (one of the original Wikimedians from 2001, I might add) comments in a way he did not mean them. I understood "baby" to simply mean "new". New wikis, just-born wikis as it were, do not have the infrastructure to handle a lot of the maintenance work, and they get handled on Meta. Once a wiki matures, much of that infrastructure is handed to that wiki to be handled locally. This includes deciding on who gets access to various maintenance tools, as well as setting up dispute resolution processes. The foundation, likely because of legal issues, keeps the right to give tools that are subject to privacy issues localized on Meta for oversight purposes. I don't think Manning meant that Meta was childish or that we Metapedians were lacking anything. Solely that once a wiki grows to a certain size and complexity, most issues are supposed to be handled by the local community. As an aside, as Manning was one of the people who created Meta, IIRC, (he's so old he's Meta user #3 and doesn't even have a join date) I certainly don't think he would disparage it. -- Avi (talk) 05:36, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
    The "baby"-comment is not an attack on meta, it's an attack on the wikis that are labeled as "babies", because they are stupid, drooling, can't walk, cry, whine a lot, and shit into their pants. Oh yeah, and they need food and "help" shoved down their throats, and when they refuse to eat what they're served, they need to be spanked. Seb az86556 (talk)
    I guess it's a matter of perspective, then, because to me, labeling them as "baby-wikis" were saying that right now those projects are in a developmental stage and need a hand until they mature and develop their potential. Then again, as my own kids are teenagers already, I may be looking back on their baby phase through rose-colored glasses Face-smile.svg. My gut feeling is that Manning meant it the way I understood it; when I discuss baby projects, or projects in their infancy, at my work, my boss understands I don't mean I have to diaper the data he sends to my inbox for analysis (well, I hope so Face-grin.svg. -- Avi (talk) 06:27, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
    You just need to look at the way these "babies" are treated around here: condescending, arrogantly, no voice given. When help is really needed, hardly anyone is there, but when no help is needed everybody jumps in and has some great ideas to shove down their throats. Have you heard of the 19th-century-group "Friends of the Indians"? There ye go... Seb az86556 (talk) 06:34, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
    What process would you like to see that would help those projects and which projects specifically are you referring too? Alanscottwalker (talk) 12:39, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
    No process, no action, no meddling until they ask for help. Seb az86556 (talk) 18:23, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support, last stop for user disputes is on the local wiki. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 17:01, 19 February 2012 (UTC) Changed to oppose.
    That's not what you're supporting. Read proposal again. Seb az86556 (talk) 22:36, 19 February 2012 (UTC)
  • 'Support the last step in dispute resolution should be the local wikis. Eraserhead1 (talk) 19:47, 19 February 2012 (UTC)
    That's not what you're supporting. Read proposal again. Seb az86556 (talk)
  • i'm taking seriously the point made in regard to the en.wp-ArbCom. but we shouldn't loose sight of the fact that its up to the english wikipedia community to figure out how their conflict management systems should work. whether or not a public hearing - after its regular institutions conducted their business - is to be permitted in a certain manner isn't up to us at meta. meta is by enlarge in place to do what can't be done (better) locally, not to intervene without necessity in the local affairs of fully operational communities. said that i tend to agree that the proposal fits the proper separation of project responsibilities in a more or less sound way, regards --Jan eissfeldt (talk) 04:47, 20 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support Please limit the scope of Meta RfCs so they can't be used to pursue any random local dispute in yet another venue. This sort of problem (useless RfCs) will keep arising until you delimitate the scope of RfCs. More categories can later be added or tweaked. --Enric Naval (talk) 14:12, 20 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Conditional support. Either the final appeal should be local arbcom or it should be here (in which case Meta would need the power to enforce its decisions before that made any sense), it cannot be both without either causing chaos or one or the other venue becoming irrelevant. "Conditional" because I do not entirely like point 2; it should be reworded to "effective dispute resolution" rather than "arbitration committee" to make it less specific and more friendly to small wikis. There should also be some words added that make it clear that problems with the process itself (as opposed to a particular case) are still valid topics for an RfC on Meta. Even the Arbcom of the mighty enWP must be held to account somewhere. SpinningSpark 11:21, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support --Manuel Schneider(bla) (+/-) 16:54, 23 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Support' Night Ranger's point is a very good one, especially considering that conflicts that would be dealt with here on meta with whatever conflict resolution mechanism will be met by people without specific knowledge of the conflict, the local mechanisms and culture and the users. Trolling would be made so easy. I see the argument made below that meta was envisioned to become the one and only platform to deal with all kinds of meta stuff for all projects, but this is not what happened and not the reality today. One could argue that meta is a meta-meta platform for all projects, which is fine, but installing the supreme court version of conflict resolution for projects that already have an arbcom or similar is not something I see working well. --Millbart (talk) 06:50, 24 February 2012 (UTC)

Against proposal[edit]

  • Oppose A day ago Manning Bartlett had this to say about Meta:
    • "Meta was created to play the role currently filled by the Wikipedia namespace. We decided to create it around November of 2001.
    • The idea (at the time) was that Wikipedia was to be exclusively for articles, article discussions and user pages.
    • All policy, project discussions, disputes, notifications, etc, etc were to be contained on meta.
    • When the idea of namespaces was born, it was decided that the Wikipedia namespace would be used for "help" type pages only. Meta was still to remain the place for policy/project discussions.
    • Somewhere around mid 2002 the drift back to doing everything on WP began. This chiefly happened because the drama queens were annoyed that all of their "VITAL" input was not appearing on the WP recent changes page (which was the single most followed page at the time, because it was small enough to be usable.
    • I sometimes daydream about how much drama would have been avoided if the original goal of Meta has been preserved."
    • I agree with Manning Bartlett. It is the way it should be. Closed arbcom tribunals and lynching AN/I mobs should stop. Meta is the way to go. So let's better fix it the right way.--Mbz1 04:40, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
Manning is saying he sometimes wishes Meta served the current purpose of the Wikipedia namespace. However, there is no consensus for this, and neither you nor him have tried to demonstrate one. The current roles of the en:Wikipedia and en:Help namespaces have overwhelming consensus, as shown by their broad usage. Superm401 | Talk 04:57, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
I have never said there was a consensus. I only said that Meta could be a better place for such cases.--Mbz1 05:02, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
I was alerted that I was being quoted here. Just for clarity, my whimsical comment made off-wiki about something that happened over ten years ago is hardly a statement of intent to seek a policy change. I actually initiated an attempt to push all policy back onto Meta around mid-2002. Seeing as I failed back then, it seems pretty absurd to even consider it now. Manning 05:12, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose until point 2. is eliminated. Seb az86556 05:36, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    • Could you provide a rationale? Are you objecting because you want meta-wiki user conduct RfCs to override local ArbCom decisions for instance? Or perhaps you want no meta-wiki user conduct RfCs even for small wiki disputes, i.e. you want all such disputes to be exclusively solved on the local wikis, no matter how small the wiki is? ASCIIn2Bme 06:05, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
      • The latter is the case. Most people here know that I am a radical "localist," so my oppose is only natural and consistent. Every wikipedia should sort out its own problems independently without any interference whatsoever. Seb az86556 06:49, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
        • I'm aware that the track record of RfC/Us conducted on meta-wiki for small wikis users is mixed, e.g. Requests for comment/ПешСай@mhr.wikipedia appears to have been successful in solving the dispute, while Requests_for_comment/Alsandro_on_ka_wikipedia didn't go anywhere. Still, it seems that a meta-wiki RfC/Us in such circumstances may be sometimes justified, e.g. in the mhr dispute one admin banned 10 users, leaving the wiki practically devoid of users besides himself. I'm not sure how that could have been solved locally. ASCIIn2Bme 06:51, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
          • It shouldn't have been. That's my stance. Seb az86556 06:53, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose Untill the global ArbCom is established, this is the only way for banned users to be heard. --WizardOfOz talk 07:48, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    • Heard by whom and to what end? Who on meta has the authority to desysop an en.wiki admin when the local en.wiki ArbCom decided it's not an actionable complaint? Who on meta is allowed to overturn en.wiki blocks that were allowed to stand by the en.wiki ArbCom? Would this putative global ArbCom (GlobCom) have authority to overrule a local ArbCom? The current GlobCom proposal implies the answer to the last question is no because it lists as a prerequisite for a GlobCom hearing that "There is no arbitration committee on the affected projects." So, I don't see what different the existence of a GlobCom would make (assuming the current GlobCom proposal) given that item #2 in this meta-wiki RfC/U scope proposal coincides with the proposed scope of the GlobCom, i.e. projects without a local ArbCom. ASCIIn2Bme 09:46, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    • Do you think a few random people here are more qualified to settle a dispute than the democratically elected ArbCom, a body with up to 18 member elected by voting of many hundreds of active volunteers? You assertion seems very upside down to me. Jehochman 14:56, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
      • @ ASCIIn2Bme: Every single steward is able to overrule any decision on any wiki. The only thing needed for that is a change of stewards policy, which is meta matter. And yes, neta has the authority to desysop (stewards), and even the holy enwiki ArbCom can make mistake. @ Jehochman no I don´t think so, it is a fact. Meta community includes those hundreds of active volunteers from enwiki, and all other houndreds from all 700 other projects behind enwiki. --WizardOfOz talk 19:05, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
I'm astonished that you are an admin here, you are so wrong. Meta cannot override a local ArbCom. Period. Beeblebrox 19:12, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
Than read my setence once again: The only thing needed for that is a change of stewards policy, which is meta matter. --WizardOfOz talk 19:22, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
The only thing I see needed here is for you to hand in your admin tools. You are making a fool of yourself. Beeblebrox 19:24, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
Yes, in theory we could change policy to let Meta stewards override local ArbComs. But this is a bad idea, and as I discussed above, there is long understanding on Meta against it. Superm401 | Talk 07:11, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose A solution in search of a problem. And section 2 specifically may cause problems if any wiki has, for example, an Arbitration Committee which has for any reason decided not to cover certain areas of conflict, where such a committee has been unable to reach a decision about a conflict, or where, for whatever reason, people outside that wiki see that arbitration committee as not acting in accord with the policies at meta in the first place. I see no history at meta indicating that it intervenes rashly at all, thus the "problem" seems vastly overstated. Collect 12:35, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
Perhaps we could amend it to "without an active Arbitration Committee covering this type of issue." Do different ArbComs cover different types of issues? I think an active local ArbCom has a responsibility to reach decisions, so the unable point is dubious. People the local ArbCom ruled against will frequently say the ArbCom acted against Meta policy (such a case inspired this RFC), so I don't think we should make an exception for that. Superm401 | Talk 07:11, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose strongly per comments by WizardOfOz and others. Meta is Meta not some segment of en wp which is simply another Foundation project. --Herby talk thyme 15:10, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose per WizardOfOz. Meta isn't going to overrule local arbcom decisions, but seems to exist as the last place for free representation of banned users. While an RfC would never take action contrary to a local consensus, it does provide a medium for such users to be heard at the very least. Ajraddatz (Talk) 15:43, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    the last place for free representation of banned users? I really thought Meta existed to a useful purpose. Surely there are a range of much more useful things that Meta-admins could be attending to? Newbyguesses 21:37, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    It is both funny and sad, that, when I started this RFC I was under a self requested block, now I am under block imposed by arbcom, and before the sun sits tonight I'll be under community ban, and not just a community ban, but the community ban that will be the first one ever imposed for a user's conduct outside English wikipedia. English wikipedia's community is sick, if it allows such things to happen, and now this absolutely valid RFC I submitted in a good faith threatens Meta community as well.--Mbz1 16:44, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    How about owning your actions? You weren't banned because of some grand conspiracy. You were banned because you acted badly, repeatedly, and refused to listen to good advice when you had the chance. Jehochman 17:28, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    I own my actions. I am very proud of what I have been doing. And now I am getting banned because I dared to speak up against bullying on wikipedia, and because some like you, Jehochman,are afraid of the truth I have spoken, while others simply do not care.--Mbz1 17:36, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose, quoting Collect. Nemo 20:30, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose Heavily canvassed at one project, which goes against the core of what Meta is. This is not an extension of English Wikipedia and people need to respect that. Ottava Rima (talk) 14:45, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    • I did ask for translations so that other projects may be notified. I was turned down. See my talk page. ASCIIn2Bme 15:55, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
Specious logic anyway. If this project is not an extension of en.wp then why was that absurd farce of an RFC allowed here, to the point where admins edit warred to try stop anyone from even discussing deleting it? Either they allow closed disputes from en.wp to be re-opened here or they don't. Since Meta can't make en.wp do anything it doesn't want to anyway it doesn't make much difference really, but making this project a platform for malcontents to bitch about en.wp is not a good idea, although it is now clear that this place is stacked full of such persons and there is a palpable air of hostility toward users from that project here. Which is shameful since this is supposed to be a site for helping other projects, not bashing them and treating their users like unwanted interlopers when they dare to come here to join in a discussion that pertains to their project. Beeblebrox 22:34, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
That's more or less what Wikiversity's relationship already is with en.wiki, and you can see for yourself how that's turned out. At Wikiversity, that's gone so far as to have had a couple of editors do "research experiments" into disrupting editing at en.wiki; I'm not saying anything like that has happened here, but the meta admins' attempts to stifle discussion here would make it seem that it's rapidly heading that direction. As an admin at en.wiki, if I ever behaved like Nemo bis and WizardofOz, I'd fully expect my head on a plate before ArbCom in minutes; it's a good thing that WizardofOz already resigned his tools. Beeblebrox has put the rest of my argument far better than I ever could, so I won't say any more. The Blade of the Northern Lights (話して下さい) 18:58, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose Per Collect. Although it seems that users from English Wikipedia will again impose their will on all other projects using heavy canvassing, while users from other projects (that will be most affected by its outcome) are mostly uninformed about this RFC.--Wikit 23:04, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    • You can thank your fellow meta admin Nemo for denying my request for translations and notifications of other projects. [2] It seems the lack of involvement of other wikis is a very convenient reason to oppose this proposal, and (coincidentally?) some of those who oppose the proposal also oppose notification of other wikis. ASCIIn2Bme 06:41, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Changed to conditional support for similar same reasoning and the realization that the emergency relief valve I am concerned with does not need a formal RfC process. Conditional oppose For all that I believe that the RfC that propagated this discussion was in contravention of Meta's policy on RfC's, I do not believe that an absolute ban on an RfC about a situation on a project which has an ArbCom is a good idea. I am, perhaps overly, concerned about the case where a small group of people can "hijack" a small project, call themselves an ArbCom, violate the basic principles of their own project, and protect their fiefdom through blocks and bans. Meta, by virtue of it being the wiki that serves all wikimedia projects, needs to be the emergency relief valve in such a situation. In general, the way the RfC guidance is currently written, RfCs about disputes on other projects are not allowed if they have been resolved on those projects. "Resolved" does not mean "everybody is happy." Most of the time, at least one party to a dispute will be unhappy with any resolution. "Resolved" means that the dispute resolution processes, whatever they may be on any given project, have been followed, and a ruling/consensus/closure/whatever the case may be has been handed down. Those cases are already excluded from being the subject of a Meta RfC. Even if there is the complaint of the dispute resolution was biased or in violation of the local project's policies and guidelines (which may be different from our own here in Meta), that should be handled locally as well. In the rare cases where there seems to be systemic control, if not censorship, by the group in control of the dispute resolution process over the majority who are complaining, should there be the ability to call an RfC on that body or members of that body here in Meta. As rare as that is, I do not want to see that emergency valve removed; protected—yes, removed—no. Of course, dispute resolution for projects which have no real process is the purview of Meta, so I agree with that point, but would continue to oppose point 2 until such emergency relief is no longer expressly forbidden. On the other hand, I believe we should be more careful in enforcing our own policies when it comes to these matters as well. -- Avi 23:16, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    • I agree with you that there exists a theoretical concern about someone abusing the notion of an Arbitration Committee. To the best of my knowledge, insofar that has not happened; only projects with a large user base have an ArbCom. I think most if not all current ArbComs are elected in such democratic circumstances. Theoretical concerns about the possible abuse of the notion of an ArbCom are probably best addressed by clarifying on that meta-wiki page what are the minimum requirements for something to be called an ArbCom. Furthermore, this proposal does not prevent a RFC concerning the ArbCom itself or some other (abuse of) process in a wiki being brought on meta. If someone thinks the enwiki ArbCom is dysfunctional they can bring a RfC here, although in the enwiki case there have been at least three local RfCs discussing problems and proposing improvements for the functioning of the ArbCom over there. ASCIIn2Bme 06:08, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose While most cases I would want to see to be done here could be done with the proposal, there is the probability of an community (with an arbcom) itself going bad ways or of a corrupt arbcom abusing its powers. Those cases may never happen, but if, it would be a lot more difficult to deal with that.--Müdigkeit 15:50, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
    • That was my original concern too, but after thinking about it, we don't need an RfC to protect local projects from ArbCom's gone rogue; if a project's local ArbCom has truly gone rogue, all we need are stewards with a clue. -- Avi 16:43, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Collect and WizardOfOz. mickit 18:02, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose per WizardOfOz and Ottava Rima. Dsds55 (talk) 14:57, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
This account appears to have been created for the sole purpose of participating in these discussions in support of Ottava. I forget, are we allowed to point that put or not? Beeblebrox (talk) 19:31, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Not really, he/she has a solid contribution history on ru-wp and de-wp (although currently blocked for some reason on ru.) Fut.Perf. 22:01, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
Blocked on user's request (meaning they can be unblocked any moment they wish)--Ymblanter (talk) 22:08, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose per WP:BEANS – Meta gets enough non-Meta, non-global complaints about users already, without actually inviting it. Small projects that are able to arbitrate disputes in a Committee of the Whole do not need to have a special committee. If a small project is able to handle behavioral issues locally then leave them to it, if not then that is the problem and it should not be framed as an RFC/U. ~ Ningauble (talk) 21:57, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Collect, WOO and Ottava Rima. Theirrulez (talk) 06:56, 17 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Wizard and Ottava Rima. --N KOziTalk 09:26, 18 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose, reconsidered. Not with current wording. --Dirk Beetstra T C (en: U, T) 13:26, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose. I do not think replacing what essentially is an informal process to discuss problems across Wikimedia project with an enwiki-like bureaucracy will solve any problems. Frequent changes of the wording of the proposal in the course of this RFC also means that its authors simply do not understand what they talking about. Ruslik (talk) 18:36, 22 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Oppose. I don't know how it is on en.wiki. Maybe it's a wonderful friendly place with lots of admin discussion and true democracy. It sure looks that way. But in other wiki projects (ru.wiki for example) admins are a tiny group of people who know each other, who are very close to each other and who are extremely protective of each other. To the point where they make judgments and rulings based on their friendship not the rules. Sometimes local Arbitration Committee is just 3-4 people who are at the same time the admins and the checkusers. It's impossible to get through to justice with this kind of system. And I can bet any money that Russian WP is not (and will not be) the only wiki project with problems like that. There MUST be at least one more level where you can go if for some reason local admins fail. Cancelling RfC without substituting it with some other fail-safe system will lead to usurpation and abuse of power in (m)any local wikipedia. Leo711 (talk) 15:56, 19 February 2013 (UTC)

Comment[edit]

  • TERMS: "harrassment" & "dispute resolution": As an infrequent visitor to meta (and indef blocked on en.wikipedia), I will refrain from asserting support/oppose to the proposition, but I will suggest that documenting administrative behavior should not be casually defined as harassment. Nor should cross-allegations of misbehavior be lumped under the category "dispute resolution." (Noting, of course that since content disputes cannot be resolved by arbitration, such disputes are resolved by weighing cross-allegations of misbehavior multiplied by the summation of the power coefficients of those not too afraid of reprisals in the future to defend you -- but I digress.:-)

    Rhetorically (but quite sincerely) I will conclude this comment bullet with my applause for the functionaries of meta who graciously keep the bullying of other realms at bay. For those who believe (rightly or wrongly) that they have been treated unjustly elsewhere and been silenced, the existence of a realm where claims can be voiced without harassment(yes, rhetorical, but not without merit), may well be good for Wikipedia even if such voicing is procedurally without effect. (Note re silencing: Given the limited number of administrators, and the time costs of determining what is just/fair, it is understandable how silencing appears a reasonable solution given the givens.) PS Perhaps meta tag pages[__NOINDEX__ magic word won't work for RfC. Robots.txt?] to be excluded from search engine indexing. PPS And to no one in particular but you know who you are;) documentation is not defamation. Selah :-)
    -- (will sonnetize upon request ;-) Proofreader77 11:51, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

    • After a bunch of incidents, Proofreader77 eventually managed to get themselves blocked indefinitely by—a year ago. En-Wikipedia is pretty lenient about unblocking people and giving them second chances. Coming here and joining in the harassment gang with other banned users is not a good decision. It would be smarter to request unblocking or make an appeal to ArbCom. Jehochman 12:31, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
      as per my comment on the talk page, I offered to unblock Proofreader77, and recommended that they appeal to Arbcom. John Vandenberg 01:46, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    • Agree, mostly, with user:Jehochman, except I do not believe that user:Proofreader has joined the harrassment gang. I am reading it as an attempt at a neutral comment. cheers Newbyguesses 21:07, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    • (re link to en.wiki blocklog: See talk.) -- Proofreader77 22:26, 11 February 2012 (UTC)
    • Mbz, you're doing something which is common but frustrating. You bring up and generally refer to the entire long history of some dispute, which distracts and confuses people; they can't evaluate all that at once. What you need is not this RfC/U but some other kind of RfC. Try starting an RfC, Is it acceptable for local wikis to ban editors for comments made on Meta?. Cite only, and I mean only, the diffs documenting that you were actually banned for this reason and not some other (and it had better be true...). Keep your entire presentation under 500 words - preferably, under 500 characters. Ask people here, whether they believe that Meta behavior should be judged only on Meta, just as, say, some people might say that en.wiki behavior should be judged only on en.wiki. I bet you'll get a sympathetic response then, or at least, a fresh discussion. Wnt (talk) 16:38, 22 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Comment Comment I'd just like to briefly note, as I stated at the RfD, that I think that as the Meta RfC proposal reads now, requests such as Mbz's are already out-of-scope, as the issue was not "unresolved"—it was just not resolved to her liking. I think we should be able to function as a place where potential abuse of bureaucracy can be voiced, but not as forum for "I didn't like my local project's ruling so I'll come complain here". -- Avi 19:51, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    IMO before we're talking about "resolved" and "unresolved" we should establish what it means. I mean how an issue could be considered "resolved" if an arbitrator asked this question last night here on meta "At the same time, if these allegations about behaviour on en:Wikipedia have not been examined before, I merely ask if they should be examined now. Is this something of concern to the community?", which means arbcom has never looked at the evidences at all. How this issue could be considered "resolved", if the most complete response I got was this one "It is time to back away, and drop this stick. Gwen Gale is not a perfect admin, for we have no such creatures. But she's not this bogeyman you want her to be seen as, either. " No, the issue was never resolved.I was refused in a dispute resolution, and told the issue is resolved. Maybe it would have been better to file RFC about arbcom's conduct first. Well,I am going to file this RFC soon.--Mbz1 20:12, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    Are you saying that you are attempting to discuss an En-Wiki issue on Meta prior to having the appropriate discussion on En-Wiki? That is certainly not the purpose of Meta, to be used instead of dispute resolution processes that already exist on local projects. -- Avi 20:17, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    No, it is not what I am saying at all. I emailed to arbcom my evidences, and contacted a few of them on meta about RFC. The only email I got before the block from arbcom stated that they considered the matter resolved, and I will not get any more responses from them. There were no specifics at all.The evidences I presented in my RFC were never examined by arbcom, and I was told do not email to arbcom anymore. The only thing I'd like to happen that my RFC is examined by arbcom on Wiki (Meta) that I am told what is wrong with the cases I presented, but not in a general therms, in specifics. Is it so much to ask for?--Mbz1 20:41, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    They considered the matter "resolved", you say so yourself. You may not like the resolution, but the highest body dealing with editor behavior on the project "considered the matter resolved," which means that the RfC did not exactly conform to Meta guidelines in that it was not unresolved. -- Avi 21:03, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    Well, maybe not, but then I believe RFC concerning arbcom's conduct will be within Meta guidelines.--Mbz1 21:45, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
    Firstly, that is not what you did, you now basically admit that you improperly used Meta’s RfC policy to continue a matter that was resolved on the home wiki. Secondly, I am uncertain that "opening an RfC on an ArbCom" is possible on Meta as well, for, once again, the current Meta policy only allows RfCs for non-Meta projects in cases where the dispute remains unresolved. Not liking a resolution does not make something unresolved. Arbitration Committees are part and parcel of Wikimedia project dispute resolutions, and are defined (per Meta) as "…a small group of trusted users who serve as the last step of dispute resolution…". If you have a problem with an EnWiki resolution, that is an EnWiki issue. Even evidence of bias or inappropriate behavior by an ArbCom should be handled on the local project first. If you believe that the EnWiki ArbCom is abusing its privilege and acting in a manner not in accord with its mandate (which does not mean "coming up with a resolution I don't like"), and you believe that local discussion was improperly prevented or stopped by those abusing their power, then some some discussion may have been appropriate here, if only a request for more eyes. Having Meta as a safety valve is a good thing to prevent situations where a small group of editors can hijack an entire project, but abusing that valve should be prevented, and prevented firmly, to maintain the gravity of such situations. EnWiki certainly is not hijacked by a small group of users, and if there was evidence of systematic bias or abuse of local project policies, that should be brought to the EnWiki community first. However, that is not the claim you make. Rather, it seems is that you didn't like what EnWiki ArbCom decided, so tried to use Meta as a vehicle to continue your EnWiki issue, which, according to my understanding of Meta's policies and guidelines, is inappropriate. -- Avi 22:04, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
No, I have never said I used META improperly. I used it within my understanding of the policy.
I have never submitted all the evidences presented in RFC to arbcom because they stated they do not want to hear from me anymore. What I actually submitted to arbcom was 5-7% of what I have in RFC now.
That's why I consider the issue unresolved.
How arbcom could be trusted, if they just blocked my email with no reason. The last email I sent was request to unblock my talk page written in a very polite manner. It was sent a few days ago. What "Email used to further dispute." they are talking about? I give them permission to publish it! I am sure they will refuse to publish it. How arbcom could threat people like that without presenting any evidences and with no reason. It is not Nort Korea, it is Wikipedia. --Mbz1 22:25, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
You have actually made it very simple and clear:
  1. There exists a dispute resolution process on the local project.
  2. You engaged that dispute resolution process. Whether you did so with all, some, or no evidence is irrelevant to this discussion. You made a decision how to engage that process, and you did by contacting the body responsible for editor behavior.
  3. The process had a resolution, of which you were clearly informed by that body.
Ergo, an RfC about the original complaint is improper under Meta’s policies and guidelines, having nothing to do with the local project. -- Avi 23:05, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
Could you please clarify what do you mean under "the original complaint"?--Mbz1 23:33, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
Whatsoever you had contacted the EnWiki ArbCom about that you now listed here. The way you have described it, there is no way I can see this being allowed by Meta policy. Either
  1. You followed dispute resolution on EnWiki with regard to Gwen Gale and were given a resolution by EnWiki ArbCom that you did not like. Or
  2. You tried to engage in dispute resolution on Meta without following the processes of the local project in which the dispute lay.
Either one is inappropriate for Meta. -- Avi 23:38, 12 February 2012 (UTC)
I disagree.
  1. Here at Meta I presented new evidences that never were presented to arbcom because they said they will not respond to me any more.
  2. I am a convict now. I am banned on English Wikipedia.As a convict I have a right to present new evidences and to be heard, but arbcom refuses to talk to me.
  3. That's why my dispute resolution concerning new evidences is not resolved, and I tried, but was refused in resolving it.
And, if I am not mistaking you still are talking about my request concerning Gwen Gale. This request is closed. It could be deleted or preserved, but no matter what, it is closed. I am saying that I'm going to submit RFC about arbcom conduct, and not only concerning my particular situation, but also concerning some general practices of arbcom. Thanks.--Mbz1 00:22, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  1. Violation of Meta RfC requirement about having unresolved dispute. If you failed to provide what you believed was appropriate evidence at the original complaint, that is no one's fault but your own.
  2. EnWiki Arbcom responded to your e-mail saying they considered the matter resolved. The fact that your behavior was deemed so egregious as to require indefinite blocking is, again, no one's fault but your own. The ban arose from your trying to use Meta to undermine a dispute resolution that followed proper channels and was deemed closed by the ultimate body responsible for it.
  3. It is only unresolved in your own mind, because you did not receive the result you wanted.
The proper venue for an RfC on EnWiki ArbCom conduct is EnWiki. The English Wikipedia Arbitration committee answers to the English Wikipedia (and the foundation for certain issues like CU and OS, and Jimbo, technically, retains veto power, if I am not mistaken). It is certainly not the case that they have hijacked the project and are banning and blocking all those who disagree with them. They are fulfilling their duties in accord with EnWiki policy and guideline. Meta is not the place for "sour grapes" against ArbCom. You weren't even banned by ArbCom—you were banned by the community. I do not believe a single member of ArbCom supported the ban—it was solely Wikipedians. So regardless, Meta is not the place for your complaints; your behavior on, and about, the English Wikipedia project had ramifications. Just as we here on Meta want people to respect our policies and guidelines, so to must we respect other projects. In the community's eyes, you demonstrated a complete lack of respect for the EnWiki dispute resolution process by continuing your dispute here on Meta, and now there are consequences. No more, no less. The fact that it prevents you from furthering a dispute deemed closed by the ultimate arbiter on EnWiki (well, outside the foundation or Jimbo) should give you reason to think about your actions and their reception. -- Avi 00:43, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Do you believe I should be satisfied with EnWiki Arbcom response to my e-mail? Well, I am not. It is not North Korea, it is Wikipedia.
About the community ban:
  1. I was banned on English wikipedia over something I did on Meta. It is the first case ever somebody, who was not contributed to English wikipedia for months was banned there.
  2. I did not violate any meta policy.I was not even warned about my RFC by any Meta admin.
  3. I was banned without an opportunity to say anything in my defense.
  4. Quite a few users who voted for the ban are heavily involved with me, including the filer of the ban proposal.
I am very proud of my behavior. I have became a victim of bullying while fighting bullying, but I did not give in to bullying.
I will file rfc, concerning arbcom's and Jimbo's conduct here on Meta, and whatever happen will happen.--Mbz1 01:17, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
you're right — it's not North Korea. In North Korea, they won't let you leave. Seb az86556 01:24, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Well,maybe I should have said: "It is not Soviet Union": When Boris Pasternak won Nobel Prize for Doctor Zhivago "the Literary Institute in Moscow demanded that all its students sign a petition denouncing Pasternak and his novel. They were further ordered to join a "spontaneous" demonstration demanding Pasternak's exile from the Soviet Union." (I am quoting wikipedia's article). I am not sure, if there's a similar example in the history of North Korea, but Soviet Union was hardly better. --Mbz1 01:51, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • At this point I imagine it is now clear to all of us why ArbCom got tired of listening to this nonsense. You've been told repeatedly, both here and by arbCom, that the matter is resolved and closed. It's been explained to you at great length by persons more patient than myself that you cannot effect the change you desire at en.wp by posting more rfcs here. You've lost. You need to het over it, move on, do something else. WP can be surprisingly forgiving, if you let this go and go live your life without Wp for a significant period of time you may find that the community is willing to welcome you back. every day you keep up this nonsense reduces the chances of that. When you are in a hole, it's not a good idea to dry and dig your way out of it. seriously, go do something else. Beeblebrox 02:26, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
    The length of the explanation does not matter. One could write a few hundreds words and explain nothing. This comment by Philippe (WMF) had only a few words, but it was the most constructive comment I have ever got for my RFC. The evidences presented in my RFC should be looked at and discussed. It will be much more productive than writing "explanations" in general words. You were blocked yesterday by an admin that you and others said was involved. There's no policy about involved admins on Meta. There's one on Wikipedia. Why don't you,Beeblebrox, look at the section in my RFC, where I presented the evidences of Gwen Gale misusing the tools while involved, and instead of writing long length explanation discuss particular cases in the light of your own block?--Mbz1 02:36, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I tried to get you to comprehend the situation, but obviously you are either unwilling or unable to do that so I don't see any point in even talking to you anymore. Kind of like how ArbCom and many others don't see any point. Have a nice life, hope you are someday able to work pout whatever problem is causing you to act like this. Beeblebrox 03:30, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Comment Comment This RFC seems to be trying to decide the relationship between Meta and other WMF projects. Is Meta a place of "final appeal" for users on other projects? (Meta:About Meta makes no mention of that purpose...) Who participates in such appeals; who is allowed to participate in such appeals; and who enforces them in what circumstances? Or is Meta merely a place of coordination, supporting projects that need it (eg via global sysops)? Most fundamentally, does Meta have power over other projects qua Meta (as opposed to individual users like Stewards who coordinate via Meta to a degree)? Or is it just a support system for other projects (like IT consultants if you don't have your own IT department)? Whereas, at least as big an issue is the question of what purpose an RFC/U on Meta can really serve unless both parties agree to participate - given that there are no sanctions easily flowing, and not even any deadline or systematic closure. PS I can't find any evidence of discussion about the original creation of Requests_for_comment on meta in January 2005. Rd232 02:23, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I think that Meta should not be a place of final appeal, but it could provide a forum for the development of advisory input to the WMF which does, ultimately, have the final say even though all involved prefer that to happen very rarely indeed. (There's also potentially steward involvement which I won't pretend to understand) The time will come, perhaps surprisingly soon, when the English-language ArbCom and admins get co-opted/infiltrated by some outside group with an ideological agenda incompatible with maintaining a properly neutral and comprehensive encyclopedia, and WMF has to start over from scratch to take back its own project. Meta is the place where that will be discussed and decisions recommended when the time comes. Wnt (talk) 16:23, 22 February 2012 (UTC)
IMO Meta could be used to provide a place for arbitration cases that involved editors who are blocked on English wikipedia. Why? Because in current situation a blocked editor writing to arbcom either gets no response at all, or gets something like I did: "we consider the matter resolved" with no explanations at all. Of course under such circumstances I have no trust in arbcom at all. If Meta is used for certain arbitration cases, it would not mean Meta is dictating decisions to English wikipedia, it will only provide a neutral territory to hear these cases. Members of arbcom still would be the ones to decide, but this measure would make them think twice before rejecting a case with no reasons.--Mbz1 03:27, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
Perfectly feasible, yes. But there needs to be some kind of a process constructed then; it's not very helpful for Meta to try to be (metaphor alert) a wall outside the court house for people to graffiti on when they've exhausted the legal process. Rd232 23:40, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Comment Comment I see that in the original proposal point 1 (meta users) and point 3 (global ban) are clearly within the scope of meta. I am not so certain about point 2 (referrals where no ArbCom) as I much prefer the entities manage their own affairs, I am also very wary of the public listing of two person disputes like the recent RfC. If 2) were modified to allow specific community banned member(s) to bring forward their case for community comment, that is about themselves, not about another person, then that seems to me to be within community review, though we should be alert to libellous comment. In this space I feel that the communities retain their authority, yet it gives an aggrieved person the opportunity to ask for review, especially outside of a community if they have been banned or are watchlisted. I am not sure whether that is a holistic list of scenarios, so I wouldn't want to be dismiss anything else, however, the principle of keep it within the relevant community should apply. billinghurst sDrewth 12:46, 13 February 2012 (UTC)
I agree with much that was said here. I especially agree with point 2 regarding allowing users to request comments about themselves rather than others. I realize that the request for comments about one's own behavior may include some reference to the behavior of another, but the restriction should narrow the focus to a reasonable level. - UnbelievableError (talk) 05:18, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Comment Comment. I would like to see category 2 defined more narrowly. As a participant in a modest sized project that does not have an Arbcom but does have enough active participants in community affairs to address these requests, I don't like the prospect of Meta being used for forum shopping. Any request under category 2 ought to begin by testing the proposition that the local community is incompetent to hear the request, and ought not proceed without such a finding.

    The existence of an active community forum should be prima facie evidence that the community is able to manage local questions of user conduct; and an active Arbcom should be conclusive evidence. (An allegation that an Arbcom is too dysfunctional to exist should be handled by Stewards, or addressed as a much larger issue than any individual RFC/U.) If a local community or its Arbcom expressly denies certiorari, as in the above mentioned recent case, that should not in itself be grounds for claiming the community is unable to address the issue. ~ Ningauble 15:54, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

    I have thought about this some more, and !voted above to Oppose. ~ Ningauble (talk) 21:57, 16 February 2012 (UTC)
  • Comment. I'm astonished to see that this RFC still gets quite some attention ... I see this whole situation the following way: It should be clear to everyone that an RFC on Meta, proposed by an en.wiki user who was blocked there, is not a very effective way for this user to get what he wants. Now, this RFC about Gwen Gale didn't get a lot of attention from meta users, probably because of this reason - 'let the complainer let off some steam, he will get bored eventually' or so. However, suddenly a lot of users from en.wiki seemed to feel threatened by this Gwen Gale RFC and appeared here in order to protest against it, some in a very demanding way and/or using a very harsh wording. In discussion with some meta users/admins, one word led to another and soon blocks because of "No personal attacks" had to be given out.
    To my mind, this RFC now is like taking a sledgehammer to crack a nut - in order to get rid of the "danger" of having meta RFCs by blocked vandals against them, en users proposed this + support it a lot. Now even translations are made to rack up potential protesters from other large wikis (?). The "non-process" you find at Meta RFCs doesn't work like ArbCom inquiries or other procedures on en (let alone the idea this might work like a global community vote with decision-making powers for other projects!)... if there's a clear abuse of adminship on a small wiki, stewards might intervene; on en they would definitely not. So to me, this proposal is only a waste of time to me; remember not to feed the trolls. --MF-W 19:28, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
    Translations are made to give everybody a chance to participate. I am not sure how yopu came to the conclusion that translations were made to attract protesters. I suggest that you apologize.--Ymblanter 19:39, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
    I wasn't sure about this, that's why I put a question mark behind that sentence. As usually, there are no translations of RFCs and no special notifications to some projects, I had the impression. --MF-W 19:53, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
    Usually, RFCs only concern one particular project, and it does not make any sense to translate them to multiple languages. For instance, here I did not translate the RFC itself, but I am monitoring the discussion and translate the responses in Russian into English. (I would also translate English to Russian upon request). The page we are now on concerns multiple projects, and it is therefore logical to have it translated to at least major languages.--Ymblanter 19:57, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
    Ok, thank you. I have now stricken my sentence about the translations. --MF-W 20:09, 14 February 2012 (UTC)
    Good, thanks--Ymblanter 20:24, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

The uselessness of discussing anything at all here[edit]

Is perfectly demonstrated by this very RFC, which was never closed, just faded away, just like Meta:Proposal for a policy on involved administrators, which could have avoided further drama like we saw around this time last year. This place is all sizzle and no steak. Beeblebrox (talk) 18:50, 21 February 2013 (UTC)