Listing deleted titles

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I think this page gives its topic rather more attention than it deserves. It's just not that important. Anyway, you're absolutely right: I do not care if people can see what pages I've deleted. They can look in the history of the "page titles to be deleted" page if they're interested. I'll edit that page accordingly. --Larry_Sanger

Since you feel that it's okay to tell people to look at the history, is it okay if we maintain a page which lists that same information, but organized more efficiently? --The Cunctator

No. --LMS


Yes, why?

Because we have better things to do with our time. --LMS

Don't worry, you won't have to work on it.

OK, look, Cunctator, this is getting ridiculous. As I said, I really don't care if you do this, but I do think it is a waste of the time of anyone who does do it. But if you insist on spending your time in this way, go ahead. Just put it on a regular Wikipedia page, linked "quietly and unobtrusively" as it were.

For others reading this: what I don't like is Cunctator putting such a list on his personal page so that he can accuse someone of tampering with his personal page if anyone wants to remove it. That constitutes an end-run around what should be an open, consensus-based process.

Moreover, frankly, I very much suspect that this is primarily just a stupid, silly continuation of Cunctator's evident grudge against me for (repeatedly) deleting a page of his, which (again, on a subpage of his own personal pages) archived a bunch of totally asinine front page vandalism. This created a totally nonsensical controversy in which Cunctator essentially accused me of acting like a bully and an autocrat for deleting his vandalism archive, and in which I and others eventually concluded that Cunctator was acting like a troll--which, I'm afraid, I still think he is doing, even on this very page. This explains my hostility toward him, in case you were new and didn't know this already.

I have absolutely nothing to hide when it comes to my page-deleting. I'm very happy for it to be public knowledge what pages I do and do not delete. This would certainly include pages that The Cunctator has written. I resent Cunctator's insinuation, above, that everything might not be above-board, as if there were a serious need to rescue our reputation on this score.

By contrast with that, it is reasonable to suggest that there needs to be public oversight of page deletions, for the very small reason that it will help newcomers to understand, to a very slight extent, that the project is open. I think people can and do trust that I and Jimbo do a good job of this, but for those who do not, it's a good idea that there be at least some way to see what pages have and haven't been deleted. That's given in the history, anyway. I am skeptical that going to the extent of having a carefully-maintained directory of pages that have and have not been deleted is would be anything but a waste of time. I also think that it would be a badge of honor, to some extent for some vandals to have a lot of pages listed there.


First off, I'd like to say that other than the characterization of this as a personal grudge, which I reply to below, I admire LMS's stance on this matter.

I don't have a grudge against LMS for that. I don't even have a grudge against LMS. I do feel upset that with great frequency he characterizes my intentions as a personal attack on him, that he minimizes my concerns, and that he belittles me personally.

But that don't feel the same way about him. Rather, I simply want to be able to feel as if contributing to Wikipedia is worth my effort. If I were able to not have any qualms (or even fewer) about making contributions, I would do more.

For others reading this: what I don't like is Cunctator putting such a list on his personal page so that he can accuse someone of tampering with his personal page if anyone wants to remove it. That constitutes an end-run around what should be an open, consensus-based process.

I'm sorry; when I wrote "Bad idea: Delete a list of such entries from someone else's user page." I didn't mean to imply that changing the user page was the big problem, though when LMS later changed the above opinion to reflect his opinion, that did upset me. I thought it was a bad idea to delete the list at all, not to delete the list from my userpage. I wasn't trying to make an end run around a discussion process, as should be evident by my creation of this page.

Re: "an end-run around what should be an open, consensus-based process." I believe LMS is making a distinction between discussing Wikipedia issues (open, consensus-based) and making decisions about Wikipedia issues (LMS). If that is the case, his language is slightly unclear.

Finally, LMS claims "I resent Cunctator's insinuation, above, that everything might not be above-board." Where is this insinuation? The "above-board" paragraph is taken directly from a previous LMS statement. It was he, not I, who made any such insinuation. --The Cunctator

I was going to make various responses to the above, but in the larger scheme of things, I think that would be counterproductive.

Cunctator, if you want me to be convinced that you have no personal animus toward me, and you want to work in a friendly fashion with me, you would remove the "good idea"/"bad idea" comments from your page. You might indeed think all those things, but it is formulated in a way that I find very insulting. I know you will say that I shouldn't find it insulting since it's merely your honest opinion. But in fact I do find it offensive; and polite people, of course, respect other people's feelings. Also, you would remove the "Bias Talk" subpage from your page. You have never explained why you have that up there. You would also remove this discussion, which remains, in my opinion, an unfair and misleading description of a situation now long since past.

If you were to do these things, it would be much easier to believe that you have no grudge (sorry about that word, but it certainly does seem that way to me) toward me. And then it would be much easier for me to work politely with you. I certainly would prefer that. In fact, I prefer that, or that you completely leave the project, to your staying and continuing on the way you have been. --Larry_Sanger

It would be much easier for me to work politely with LMS if he didn't use phrases like "ridiculous", "waste of time", "stupid, silly", "grudge","totally nonsensical", "troll", "various mistakes", "screed", and "breathtakingly unfair, and basically clueless". --The Cunctator

All of those epithets were richly deserved, however. You make it sound as if I were being unfair to a generally upstanding member of the community! I've toned down my most recent comment: how's that?

I'm sure I wouldn't use such words so much to describe your behavior, C., if you would do as I request, and if you would start acting more politely. You'll notice that I do not use such epithets to describe many other members--just you. That's because of how you have been behaving.

And how about commenting on the substance of what I said? About those nasty pages, the likes of which no other member of Wikipedia continues to have--just you? --LMS

If I might interrupt this charming and useful exchange of compliments to return to the topic of this page, it might be worth mentioning that, in this software,

  • for sysops (LMS), there's a "delete this page" button on every article page.
  • every such deletion is logged at Log:Page Deletions, a page that is for everybody to see and cannot be edited except by altering the MySQL database directly.

The page is currently empty here. See [1] for an example. --Magnus Manske

Hi all -- I think that Larry has a valid concern regarding vandals, but I have to say that I see a real value in a deleted pages page. It would be nice to look at a list of ddeleted pages (for other than spelling errors) and see why -- it would give more examples of acceptable nomenclature and insight into changes in nomenclature norms over time. Similarly, it would let people see real examples of subjects that really are dictionary topics, or topics that the community feels (or felt) were unacceptable.

Of course, this all presumes that people would actually take the time to go to the list of topics page and the deleted topics page to see what's been done before...

J Hofmann Kemp, naturally idealistic historian running into a historian's inherent cynicism ... ;-)

I want to make a comment about something I did, very deliberately, on the "page titles which have been deleted" page. The Cunctator, for some strange reason, saw fit to list all the pages of his that were deleted by me on (he says, and I suppose it's true) Nov. 3. Among these pages was--he invites you to consider the delicious irony--"Page titles which have been deleted". I do not actually find that ironic at all. I find this to be a perfect example of the not-very-subtle trolling that C. continues to practice here.

This pointless game-playing, Cunctator, has to stop. It obviously doesn't help the project. Don't you care about that? If you're still bothered, let's talk about it openly, not by playing these sort of games. If you can't let it drop, let's talk about it. Your edits, such as putting the pages of yours that I deleted on the "page titles which have been deleted" page, indicate that you are deeply disturbed about how I have treated you. Let's get it out in the open, then.

In the interests of full disclosure, on said page, in the version that it seems I deleted, he originally listed a number of pages that I deleted. It was, along with his "reasons for deletion" page and his additions to the "vandalism" pages, essentially a way for him to point out the awful, awful insult and harm that was done to him by my--what?--by my removing his archive of vandalism from his personal pages! That's what started all of this. Pretty ridiculous, isn't it?

Come on. We have better things to do with our time. Don't we? --Larry_Sanger

On the page "Wikipedia utilities/Page titles which have been deleted" I listed the page titles which have been deleted.

I did not invite anyone to consider delicious irony or indicate that I am deeply disturbed about how LMS has treated me.

Of course you didn't. You try to be a little more subtle than that. It's what makes trolling fun!  :-)

I did not assert that any pages "of mine" (whatever that means; I recognize that I don't have ownership over any pages) were deleted by LMS. Rather, he's said in the past that several of the pages deleted on Nov. 3 were not deleted by him, and I believe him.

I'm being accused of "not-very-subtle trolling" and "pointless game-playing"? All I did was list the pages that have been deleted. This is not meant to impugn LMS. He said that he didn't mind if anyone saw what pages have been deleted; now it seems that he does. I'm confused. --The Cunctator

Fine, fine performance this time, Cunctator. I'd give that a 9 out of 10. --LMS

The Cunctator moved the following from the main page after (attempting to) incorporate its arguments

Should Wikipedia list deleted titles?

I think the question itself is something of a non-sequitur. "Wikipedia" doesn't "do" anything, individual people do. Wikipedia is just a tool. The two meaningful questions, then, are (1) "Should one or more individuals make a list of deleted pages?", and (2) "Should one or more individuals delete such pages if they are made?" Frankly, I'm inclined toward "no" on both of those. I see no value whatsoever in making such pages, but nor do I see sufficient harm to worry about them if they are made. Of course since they are clearly neither encyclopedia articles nor essential Wikipedia structure or policy pages, they belong here in Meta if someone cares to make them. --Lee Daniel Crocker

Cunctator, I am hereby deciding (and you are not welcome to change this back) that we are not going to attempt to list and represent various arguments on this issue. The reason for my deciding this, in case it wasn't obvious, is that any attempt to do this will be closely participated in by you, and you, in my opinion, lack the ability represent various arguments fairly. I am just not interested in getting into an edit war with you about how different arguments on this should be represented and characterized. Consequently, it is only fair that people like Lee should feel free to add their comments, unmolested, to the bottom of the page, and that the main text of the page should be attributed to you. The latter, of course, is perfectly fair as well.

If you like, what you could do is add a notice to your section of the page saying, "In the following, I will try to encorporate fairly what others, below, have said." That would be grand. --Larry_Sanger

I find LMS's decision to be unfair and a bit cruel, so I've deleted the entry. I disclaim authorship of the entry, so if you want to stick your name wherever LMS put mine, feel free to do so and put it back up.

LDC didn't complain of any molestation, to my knowledge. --The Cunctator

No, I didn't. That's primarily because I don't suffer from the problem of taking myself, or this project, or life in general too seriously. Lee Daniel Crocker