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Incorrect Invitation Notice[edit]

I am receiving a "You are invited to vote on the global sysops proposal" notice at the top of en WP pages, however this voting page clearly states that I'm ineligible, because I do not have >=150 edits (on any combination of projects). I should not have received the notice. At the very least the notice should be altered to say "You may be eligible to vote on the global sysops proposal." or something to that effect. I only complain because I spent time forming an opinion on the topic before realizing I'm not eligible to actually vote. Jisakujien 20:07, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Thank you for pointing this out - it is a fair criticism. I will see about changing the wording here, or mentioning the eligibility criteria in the centralnotice.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 03:26, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I had only 114 edits on en.Wikipedia when I saw the invitation. I also spent time forming my opinion before realizing I was inelligible to vote. 17:44, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Invalid votes[edit]

Just so that it is as transparent as possible I wanted to make sure we try to note any invalid votes that are indented.

So far I have only removed 1: [1] user was notified on his talk page. James (T|C) 01:21, 2 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

You mean here? I'd say make a note of why, right below the strike, in a neutral way, stating the issue and leave it at that, rather than here. ++Lar: t/c 04:16, 2 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I did mean here :) that works as well and may be better your right. — The preceding unsigned comment was added by Jamesofur (talk)

IP users voting as registered users[edit]

Please look at the history of the voting page. IP users are voting putting links to registered user accounts. Those votes should be striken out until the registered user in question confirms it. We have no way to prove that the IP = the user. Thank you.

Done 2 of them. Thanks for the notice. Pmlineditor  11:42, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
To review

Perhaps some of them are fixed now, but I've found:


— Dferg (disputatio) 17:00, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Votes lost?[edit]

It seems a few dozen votes were lost somewhere, but I can't find them... –Juliancolton | Talk 16:33, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

I don't know. Perhaps someone commented the votes out/removed them. But there would be a gap in the history when someone removes votes. This would mean to lose several bytes. -Barras talk 16:43, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I see Pmlineditor fixed it (break in the numbering). –Juliancolton | Talk 19:55, 7 January 2010 (UTC)rReply

Why the harassment[edit]

Why are those voting against the proposal being harassed so much? You are expecting those voting against to clearly explain why they are in this position yet most of the supporting votes don't give a reason neither. If I say that administrators aren't to be trusted to have 'power' across the different projects then don't just shout me down - if you think differently then prove that they are trustworthy. If you think that most vandalism is in English then show us proof rather than just saying that it's so. This is definitely not a fair vote. Do you expect those who don't speak English to also give their reasons and who'll then add the extra comments criticising them for voicing their opinions? As English Wikipedia and Wikibooks aren't affected by this proposal why are they being involved? Where's the effort the ensure that people from EVERY project voice their opinions? At the moment this vote consists of mostly administrators from various projects and a collection of meta addicts. Not a fair vote.--Xania 21:46, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Hello, this is the third place you've called my questions harassment. As I explained in other places, support implicitly means that someone agrees with the rationale detailed in the proposal. Any additional reasoning presented by supporters is extra - though where that is flawed, I'd ask for the same clarification as elsewhere. However, for opposers, there is no counterproposal, the reasoning of which we can assume people are agreeing with. Where flawed reasoning is presented, I think we should question it. This is a fairly basic concept.
We will be putting up a centralnotice with translated messages inviting users on all wikis to come voice their opinions on this proposal. We've attempted to get as many translations of that message as possible, as well as the proposal itself. The vote will run until the end of the month. We have only modest requirements for suffrage, to get the most input possible while preventing abuse of the process.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 23:21, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
OK yes I went overboard with asking my questions in different places. I wasn't criticizing you only but as I knew that you are around more and also on the same projects as myself that's why I chose to 'attack' you rather than others :) You say this is not a vote so how exactly will a decision be made. I'm well aware of 'consensus' on Wiki projects but most of the time this is just an excuse for the most experienced users and administrators to make decisions on others' behalves. The voting restrictions are reasonably modest but I fear that even a minimum of 150 edits may be a large hurdle for some smaller projects. Does this vote (consensus if you please) require approval of each individual project or will it suffice to have approval just from English Wikipedia users? I reckon many from other language wikis won't even be able to explain why they're opposed to this proposal. Wiki projects already have too many dodgy administrators - the best quote recently was when someone likened Wiki sysops as '30 year old virgins who only have power in wiki land'. Not true I'm sure but there's a hell of a lot of mistrust for sysops already. And yes the opposers have a counterproposal - it's called 'do nothing' and 'don't fix what isn't broken'.--Xania 23:42, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Yes, "do nothing" is a counterproposal of sorts, but there's no rationale there whatsoever. That's the whole point.
Actually, I may have spoken too quickly - I'm not exactly sure to what extent we're going to bean count this vs weigh arguments. Anyone who knows me knows where I stand on that continuum. But I think at some point we will actually look at numbers and come to some conclusion on that basis. I hope we will be able to have something resembling a reasoned discussion on the sticking points - if we can accomplish that, then we can implement this in a way that addresses all the significant viewpoints expressed. But that means we need more than coloured icons next to signatures - we need at least an attempt to think about things and explain viewpoints.
For example, I notice that the issue of access to global blocking has come up a few times. This was discussed during the drafting stages several times, and we elected to include it in the end. However, if that is a major bone of contention when we reach Jan 31, then we could simply implement it without global blocking. This is an example of polls are evil at it's finest. The poll here presents an artificially limited set of options: support, neutral, oppose. But the reasons matter! So by looking at the reasons, we can actually come to an agreement on what to do - even if the number of people in the various sections of the page might represent a failure if we simply counted votes.
 — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 00:00, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
With respect, if you expected more than coloured icons next to signatures then more people should have been invited to participate in the original discussion before this went to a vote. As happens so often on Wikimedia (and elsewhere) so few people have a say in the original proposal that by the time the vote comes they are so disillusioned with not being part of the original say that they vote against the proposal.--Xania 00:18, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The proposers wouldn't understand the rational of the opposers anyway. That is, unless the opposers can write (instead of only read) English. Erik Warmelink 09:57, 9 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
This has been in the works for about 18 months, and has been advertised widely several times in that time period. This particular iteration has been advertised widely as well. There's no reason to believe the proposal is static - if we see many opposers citing the same rationale, the proposal can be changed to address that concern. We may have to do so in order to get us over the hump towards consensus.
All participants in this process are welcome to write in whatever language(s) they feel comfortable using.
 — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 03:25, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
If the opposers did, the proposers wouldn't understand it. I'll try again here.
Tell me, why would a global sysop need to work from a proxy? Why would they need to work from a blocked IP? And especially, why would they need to keep "help"ing small wikipedias when they are globally blocked? You voted for the proposal, you agree with the absent rational of that part of the proposal, so I have to assume that I overlooked the obvious reason for it. Erik Warmelink 10:53, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Who decides?[edit]

Do a majority of voters from each project need to support this proposal for it to take effect? The vast majority of voters who've already voted are probably from English, Spanish, German, French and Polish projects so will it be these select language speakers who make the decision that affects all the other projects? Plus who's going to make this decision at the end of it all? The voting banner doesn't appear yet on many of the smaller wikis meaning that when it does appear, any interested editors will arrive seeing that hundreds of mostly English editors have already 'voted' making it not really worth their bother to add their own opinion.--Xania 23:59, 7 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Huh? The voting banners appear on every wiki. Cbrown1023 talk 00:04, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
You're right. It must have been slow appearing as it certainly wasn't there last night but it was on EN wikipedia. However the notice on many projects is in English which further restricts voting and pushes forward the impression that this is cultural domination from EN (and other) wikis. My experience here was with Gaelg Wikipedia (Manx Gaelic Wikipedia.--Xania 00:15, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Indeed. Check out Global sysops/wiki set, the list of wikis that this would affect: nearly all of them have the voting banner in English. Only three (en_labswikimedia, wikimania2005wiki, wikimania2010wiki) are English-language wikis. Does anyone else see this as a major problem with this vote? Namely, the very wikis this proposal affects may not know what is happening here. -kotra 00:49, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
It may be a problem. I know it takes time for translations to be made. Shouldn't they have been done before voting started? If they aren't done for a few more days or weeks then by the time users arrive here to vote they'll be put off by the overwhelming number who've already voted in favor (who are mostly from the major language projects). In this case it would be unfair especially with the limited 2 weeks that's been quoted for the vote.--Xania 01:11, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
We did try to attract translators for this for several weeks prior to the vote beginning, but without much success. If you have suggestions for getting more translations, please let us know. If you can provide translations, please do so - we can have them deployed very quickly once they're complete.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 03:19, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
This seems like a serious flaw in the voting process to me - how can a system be fairly implemented when wikis are not even consulted in their own language? It is probably too late to get a full set of translations done now. Perhaps an opt in proposal would go some way to ensuring each wiki debates the matter in their own language before it affects them. -- (RT) 21:18, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The vote should be restricted to people who will be affected, rather than being dominated by people from big wiki. big wiki people expect vandalism to be solved immediately, by "someone"; small wiki people comb the RC feel periodically, and expect stewards to handle any flagrantly bad vandal. On Latin Wikisource, I can't remember the last time there was a massive vandal spree, and I hate the thought of "global sysops" because the vandals can play games on Latin Wikisource because they know they will be playing with these global sysops rather than the local sysop and stewards who are carefully selected. "We know what you need" leaves a sour taste in the mouth. Global sysops are involving small wikis in the big wiki vandalism games. This already happens with stewards, but they have been carefully selected, and they have checkuser. Now we will have to monitor the global sysop page to disapprove kids who want big guns, but don't want to be vetted to become a steward. --John Vandenberg 07:42, 11 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
(@Mike) I do not doubt you tried to attract translators for several weeks prior to the vote, but the fact unfortunately remains: the vote as it is currently is fundamentally flawed. The voices from the very wikis being affected are the most important ones to this vote; perhaps the only ones important to this vote, as John argues. -kotra 00:16, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Have you looked at who's been voting? Frankly, I'm floored we've been so successful in getting a) large numbers of people showing up and taking an interest; and b) large numbers of them from small wikis. This vote has been a huge success, in my opinion.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 01:20, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

It is lovely to see a lot of input from the community; I hope we will see as much input into the steward election. However the point I raised here is that suffrage includes many people who have never even visited the affected projects, let alone contributed to them. I would like to see how the people affected are voting. I have gone through the oppose column, indicating who has edits on projects which will be affected. 44% of the oppose column consists of people who have edited the affected projects (I have excluded people who only created userpages or delivered notices). There are a lot of affected sysops and 'crats in the oppose column. I'd welcome you or others to do the same to the support column; it doesn't take very long to do, but it could be automated, or split between a few people to speed up the process. John Vandenberg 02:53, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

I've done two sets of the support column. Of the first 56 supporters, 43 have touched the affected projects, or 77%. Of the most recent 136 support votes, only 26.5% have touched the affected projects. It would be nice to have a sample from the middle of the pack as that may suggest that this downward trend is linear. John Vandenberg 03:53, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I've done the chunk from 400-500, where 32% of the voters have contributed to the affected projects. John Vandenberg 16:16, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Users on a Wiki can start a local RfC to opt-out to global sysops on their wiki. If someone is against Global sysops on his home wiki, he can oppose this proposal. If this proposal succeeds anyhow, he might propose to opt-out for his wiki. If that fails as well, the local community (and the global community) are in favor of global sysops, and there is no reason not to have them. --Church of emacs talk 13:01, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Have you ever initiated or participated in an RFC on an affected wiki? Better yet, I challenge you to find "RFC" infrastructure on an affected wiki. John Vandenberg 13:24, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
No, I haven't, but that doesn't mean anything. There doesn't need to be any infrastructure, every wiki has some page for general discussions (if not, use talk:main page). If there are few users there still can be a discussion and a consensus not to have global sysops do cleanup. --Church of emacs talk 14:37, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
John, first: where do you know from which projects I have contributed to? Second: when you say this should be decided by user from affected (=small) projects, are you sure all of them know about this voting? I claim: rigt user, admins abd bureaucrats from the smallest projects (i.e. projects that need this help) are sometimes even not registered here on meta. Regards, -jkb- 16:59, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

How many votes are needed for this to pass/fail?[edit]

Right now this proposal is passing 458-140, roughly a 50% margin. How many total votes are needed for this to be considered passed or failed? -- Llywrch 03:04, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Well, closing this vote would be a really difficult job (at least since it will involve checking about 600 votes). The only proposed number was 80%, however it now appears clearly that such support level is hardly appropriate to demonstrate consensus. I guess it will be easier to say at the end of vote. vvvt 09:45, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Are you saying that only at the end of the vote, the voting ratio for adopting the proposal will be determined? That seems a bit strange. Fruggo 19:51, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Our traditional number was 80% but I think what vvv was saying is that a straight count will not necessarily show what true consensus is. It is possible that a number higher would fail (or lower would pass but I think that a little less likely) if those making the decision (I would guess uninvolved stewards or possibly we could ask cary or someone from the foundation) believe that a straight count does not show the true ideas of the community. James (T|C) 21:25, 8 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Considering which side is harassed by childish signatures, the "true ideas of the community" are known. It is bad enough that the question is available only in languages whose wikis won't be effected, but voting against seems only allowed to those who can write the language of the monoglots. Erik Warmelink 10:06, 9 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Please feel free to provide translations where they're needed. We attempted to get as many translations as possible prior to the vote beginning, but fell short of our goals.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 03:21, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The proposal does not explicitly mention that objections in any language where the oppposer qualifies (i.e. 150 edits) are welcome and that the inability of the proponents to understand those objections is proof per se that the proposal isn't supported by any contributor in that language. Erik Warmelink 10:58, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Of course comments in any language are acceptable - where did you get the idea they weren't? Why should the proposal state that "the inability of the proponents to understand those objections [in some language they don't know] is proof per se that the proposal isn't supported by any contributor in that language" (emphasis mine) when that is not true? You're saying that because someone doesn't understand language X that this necessarily means that nobody who contributes in that language supports the proposal? That just isn't true, and I find it hard to take you seriously when you make such obviously incorrect statements.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 17:36, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
But they will be ignored. If noone of the proponent can translate the objections in a certain language, who (speaking that language) supports the proposal?
You just said that anyone who can't easily read through pages and pages in a foreign language has no reason to ask question. In fact, even if they translate the questions to your language, you accuse them of trolling. Wat zeg je ervan, zullen we de discussie in het Nederlands voortzetten? Erik Warmelink 18:34, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply


Why not divide both sections of votes into subparts containing at most 100 votes? It's scarcely convenient to open for editing a section with 770 votes above.--Microcell 11:59, 9 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Good idea. When someone adds a question to your own vote it can be so difficult to find it again. Naturally I thought that I'm number '171' (or whatever) but of course on the edit page the numbers are represented by the hash (#) symbol only.--Xania 14:13, 9 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I would do this just now, but one never knows who will change or recall his vote (or suddenly turn out to be ineligible) that may easily break the suggested scheme.--Microcell 15:52, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Duplicate votes[edit]

Are checks being made for duplicate votes? I glanced down the page to read some of the arguments and noticed that supports 690 and 702 seem to be the same editor, as well as 645 and 701. Davewild 17:06, 9 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

There are some folks checking for ineligible users voting, and some duplicates have been stricken as well. Feel free to help out!  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 03:22, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I wonder if we can get a script/bot to check for duplicates/ineligible voters... –Juliancolton | Talk 23:01, 10 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
This page mentions two tools/scripts. Pmlineditor  11:20, 11 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

edit notice[edit]

Can we add an edit notice to this page which reminds people of the suffrage requirements. If possible, it would be great to detect whether they have logged in, and use <blink> if they have not. Also perhaps also link directly to the suffrage checker. John Vandenberg 01:19, 12 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

I agree, An edit notice would be very helpful. I believe an edit filter is supposed to be in place to stop people from editing while not logged in (I know it worked when I tried yesterday I'll try again). I'll write up an edit notice draft and see if I can find a nice sysop. James (T|C) 08:42, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Yea, the edit filter is in place, anyone who is editing as an ip right now is getting a warning saying that they were stopped from voting and should log in. If they still make the post it's because they pressed save again (either ignoring it, for some reason not seeing it or not being able to understand it for language or other reasons). James (T|C) 08:51, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Done James (T|C) 19:48, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Length of the page[edit]

The page is way too long. I had a lot of trouble getting my vote in, and I have a good connection. Guido den Broeder 01:32, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

I've already brought up this issue three sections below, but it hasn't met many responses...--Microcell 15:45, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
How about this: Users put a link to Global sysops I vote Yes or Global sysops I vote No on their userpage. Tallying becomes trivial, no edit conflicts, invalid votes are easily filtered. The same principle works with categories and templates. Here the preliminary results:

Tell me that's a stupid idea. Paradoctor 20:49, 13 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

How will you read the different arguments the people want to post? It would be very difficult. Best regards, Alpertron 12:14, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
My personal opinion that this does not belong in a vote tally aside: Depends on what you exactly want. If people want to discuss it, that's what talkpages are for. If you just want to see their remarks next to their votes, there are several options. The simplest solution has the users put their comments in <onlyinclude>...</onlyinclude> tags on the userpage, and then transclude it onto the tally page, like this:
Using '''{{user:Paradoctor}}''' here results in
'''{{user:Paradoctor}}''' (can't get it to work for the time being Paradoctor 20:38, 14 January 2010 (UTC))Reply
This also works if the user puts it into a subpage, say user:Paradoctor/Global sysops vote comment:
Using '''{{user:Paradoctor/Global sysops vote comment}}''' here results in
This comment is transcluded from User:Paradoctor/Global sysops vote comment.
Updating the set of pages to transclude from the automatic tally page may be done manually or via bot. The bot solution can of course be much more user-friendly, as voters can just put a template on their page, without worrying about <onlyinclude> tags. This would look something like: {{vote|Global sysops|Yes|comment=I think...}} Another simple approach would use a new Special:Vote page to combine these functions in one neat package. It isn't hard to do. ;) Paradoctor 14:18, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Eh... probably not the best idea to completely reverse the voting method halfway through IMO. –Juliancolton | Talk 14:22, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
What do you mean, "reverse"? Is there any important reason not to use both methods? Besides, even if one insists on using only one of the methods, conversion is not significantly more work than manually counting the current tally. As long as I can be confident that the effort will not be reverted, I volunteer for the task. It's a kind of job I like, useful and easy. I would put notices on the user's talk pages, add a subpage for the comments, and write the prerequisite notices here. Paradoctor 14:58, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Ok. I don't know why the "pretty" method didn't work but the following will work:
Users who want to vote put either of
  • {{Global sysops Yes}}
  • {{Global sysops No}}
  • {{Global sysops vote|vote=(yes|no)|comment=(optional comment)}}
on a page in their userspace, preferably user:Username/Global sysops vote. The last variant will have either to be surrounded by <onlyinclude>...</onlyinclude>, or be put on a subpage with no other text. That's it. Everything else is stuff that has to be done anyway. Whether the votes cast so far are migrated to the new format need not concern us right now, we have more than two weeks for that. Usage is simple enough to be managed by anyone capable of voting. Mistakes are confined to single users, and don't break the tally page's layout or consistency. Seems practical enough. Are there any further issues that sould be addressed?
(confl) When we'll arrive at the point in which noboby will not able to open this page, what solution will be adopted? This vote will be open until January 31. Many people are in trouble just when trying to open this page now. This policy is appreciated here also. Thanks. ;-) --Roberto Segnali all'Indiano 14:23, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Here are some more ideas:

  • Remove ineligible vote
  • Move the votes from IPs to a separate page
  • Ask Mike to remove some of his superfluous questions and comments directed at opposers
  • Move the "Requests for Explanations" to a subpage
  • Move the wording change proposals to a subpage
  • Move the multilingual header to a subpage
  • Split the page into a /Yes and /No page
  • Replace the "x has contributed to wikis which will be affected" with a icon

John Vandenberg 00:27, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

  • Replacing sidenotices with another template is no problem. Show me that there is no blocking opposition, and you can consider it done. Is there a list of affected wikis? If so, I should be able to extract the relevant information via sulutil, and can complete the tagging.
  • The other issues concern the existing list, and can wait a couple of days.
  • What I need right now is to know that adding the category voting method has consensus (it can run in parellel, if desired). Julian has voiced concern, and I'd like to know whether my reply has satisfied him, and whether he considers this a blocking issue. Also, I'd like to see a couple more opinions. When I tried to put some text in the new categories, they were immediately deleted. I'd like to have some discussion I can point to next time. Give me some good lovin' here.
  • If anyone says they can use it, I'll make a list of users that have voted so far. For checking off tasks and suchlike.
  • I'll need people to do translations of the instructions. We can start without, but that should be completed soon IMHO.
  • Determining eligibility: Does "150 edits on at least one project" mean "at least one project with at least 150 edits", or "150 edits across WMF space"? Just so I can properly flag edits.

Giving way for the night shift, Paradoctor 01:56, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

P.S.: Just noticed the Global sysops/Vote/Validation subpage: The bulk of that work can be automated. Paradoctor 02:06, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The list of affected wikis is at Global_sysops/wiki_set. I am currently doing supports numbered 1200-end, so please pick another range if you would like to help so that we dont duplicate effort. 600-700 would be a good range to look at. suffrage is 150 on a single project. Cheers, --John Vandenberg 02:19, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply


Out of curiosity, why are these only listed in the oppose section? This seems a bit POV-ish to me... –Juliancolton | Talk 02:31, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Why are you only questioning the logic of oppose voters; that seems a bit POV-ish to me. :P
wrt to the sidenotices, feel free to do the same for the support column. And when you are done with that, could you provide some stats on how often vandalism sprees occur?
John Vandenberg 02:58, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Good point. :) Is there an efficient way to do it, or just the old-fashioned checking sulutil:? –Juliancolton | Talk 03:02, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

If I have a chance I'll try to find some links for you as examples? We don't really have a whole lot of records of attacks but I would gather I can probably find some. The only one I know I can show links for fairly easy would be a while back at simpleWikt and quite a few attacks on elWiki relatively recently. I know we have had some vandal bot problems recently where the guy kept bouncing around wikis blanking pages and leaving short messages behind but his IP moved fairly frequently as well, if I can find it in the global block logs I can show some of those as well. There is always of course the "en imported" issues of course as well, username abuse is really outside of the GS scope, some xwiki vandals (or xwiki spammers) are of course inside of the scope, at least one has routinely been a problem trying to force himself on other language sysops or users. Easiest way to see the Simple and El things is to look at my contributions simple and el:Special:Contributions/Jamesofur. The big Wiktionary attack (at the start of my contributions) is mostly me though not all, I'm just a helper in the el attacks and almost everyone had a bunch of other SWMT members also reverting. Fair warning, alot of my elWiki rollbacks are done with markbotedits if you have any default settings to hide those.

While I have a feeling that I won't be doing any of the side bars (while I can understand the idea I'm not totally sure its worth making the page much bigger then it already is :( it was over 10k for your oppose ones alone :( ). I also want to try and finish the validation work I'm doing at Global sysops/Vote/Validation. That of course doesn't mean I have an enormous problem with you or someone else doing it, though I would prefer if they were on both sides of the vote. If your looking for a little help the first script on the validation page (from vvv) puts "check" links next to signatures on the vote page which makes looking at his verification page easier. That page obviously only shows people who have more then 150 edits on the qualifying wiki (and doesn't show you say if it was 150 reverts or 150 Wiktionary entries) but can be a big help, it also shows you the amount of sysops at the wiki so you can easily see if they meet that one of the automatic inclusion bars (it doesn't check for active sysops). I will say that my gut disagrees with you about the majority of people from affected wikis voting oppose, at least from what I've seen doing validation so far. James (T|C) 03:54, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

I've done the first 56 supports, being those entered on January 1. Not surprisingly, lots of SWVT etc in there. A very high percentage of affected users in that chunk. Out of curiousity, when was the global sitenotice added? (as an aside, struck supporters IRTC1015, Kwj2772 and Bjoertvedt all look weird.) John Vandenberg 15:50, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

meant to respond to this days ago, indenting here since it doesn't go with the remainder of the thread. To the sitenotice question it was briefly up (by accident) right at the start of the vote for about 15-20 minutes and not on all wikis (this was one of the reasons we got a big load of users, from specific none en wikis then). It went up for good on I believe the 6th? Possibly the 7th, whenever the fundraiser banner came down which was a bit earlier then the 8th we anticipated. About the struck users I know Kwj2772 changed his vote and stuck it himself, Bjoertvedt's vote was put in by an IP, I've left a message on his home wiki to verify it was him, I'm not sure why IRTC1015's vote was removed (he is eligible, made the vote and did not remove it) so I placed that back in. James (T|C) 12:47, 16 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
John, is there any chance we could move these notices to a list on another page? The page is already getting a bit hard to load on a slow connection; I fear that excessive templates will only drastically increase this. NW (Talk) 17:35, 14 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Sorry but these templates should really not be on that page. The page is overloaden anyway and they don't make it better. (And the whole page looks just like broken now.) Additionally, I personally consider this influencing the vote by pegging voters as being affected (and therefore not neutral), which obviously is not what anyone wants. --თოგო (D) 13:51, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
In reply to Thogo თოგო, the page was looking sort of broken for me too, so I reduced the height of that gray bar used in template {{sidebox}} and the result seems to look better now, please check. Capmo 13:34, 21 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The sidenotices only say that the person voting has contributed to the affected wiki; it does not say that the person is "affected". There are people on both sides of the fence who are avid contributors to affected wikis. "wikt:affected" is a pretty neutral, but I wouldn't object to another word. Maybe wikt:effected would be more neutral; I was expecting someone to complain about affected/effected.
Their experience is what matters. There are many people voting who have no experience. There are many people who dont have suffrage, yet their support vote has not been removed. I have given options above on how to reduce the page size.
I have also suggested above that we could use an icon instead of the text, which I admit looks a bit odd. If you want, feel free to blank the template {{sidebox}} until a better solution comes along.
btw, I am on dialup, and I have no problem viewing and editing the page. It is odd that people on broadband are complaining.. John Vandenberg 15:23, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I don't see any reason to have this information on the voting page. Why is that a necessary or even helpful information? And btw., what does it tell you about experience if a user has some edits on a smaller wiki? Could just be fixing some interwikis or reverting some vandal. --თოგო (D) 15:40, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I was hoping that others would be keen to see this perspective, and would help. I have marked whether voters are sysops or 'crats on these projects, as that is another interesting perspective - they should have a good concept of how much vandalism occurs on their wiki. I have not discriminated wrt interwikis or vandal fighting; those types of edits still show an active interest in a project - this means that most of the SWMT are included, which is fine by me - they have a good perspective on the amount of vandalism.
Based on my analysis so far, over 50% of the voters have never contributed to an affected/effected project. That goes for support and oppose columns. I think it is helpful to inform this 50% about who is in the other 50%, to avoid the blind leading the blind. John Vandenberg 16:28, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
By 'side notices' do you mean the thing that indicates whether a user contributes to an affected wiki? Really, what's the problem? I also use a slow Internet connection (mobile broadband) yet there is no problem loading the page to view or to edit. The only problem is finding the right part (i.e finding my vote is hard because the 'numbers' of your vote don't appear in the edit window. The template indicates that I'm a contributer to an 'affected wiki' but I should point out that whilst that's true I probably do the majority of my editing on unaffected wikis. Maybe we can separate the votes on another page to see the opinion of those who are contributers to affected wikis - I don't care about someone's vote if they've never made a contribution to an affected wiki. Plus, why are people debating amending the wording of this proposal on the main page? You can't change the wording now as people have already voted! This whole process has been terribly badly organized - complete translations should have been done before voting started not during the process. Only those affected by this proposal should have been allowed to vote or at least such votes kept apart from the majority here who just use EN, ES, DE, FR and PL wikipedias. Proper evidence of the need for these Global sysops should have been given and support votes shouldn't have been allowed without some reasoning given (as is expected from those voting against the proposal).--Xania 21:07, 15 January 2010 (UTC)Reply


I read many of the support and oppose vote comments intending to make a decision to cast a vote one way or the other. I declined to vote because both groups have made some very good points and I can sympathize with the concerns of both groups. I just wanted to let you know that it is often a political tool of governments to place what is known as a "sundown" amendment to proposals that have justified concerns. The "sundown" aspect causes the decision to expire on a certain date in the future at which time the benefits or liabilities of the project will be examined. These are then discussed and another vote is held based on this updated information. Maybe more opposers would consider supporting if they knew that the value of the new proposal would be reexamined and voted upon again after everyone has a chance to experience it in practice. NancyHeise 03:53, 16 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

On Wikimedia wikis, we aim to make decisions by consensus. An important consequence of this is that consensus can change.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 01:38, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Can I vote?[edit]

I have a 3 month account. I have made more than 600 edits. Can I vote?すけ

If not, please, explain, --すけ 22:16, 16 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Not sure at all, but I'd say yes, you can vote. Your account is over 3 months old and you've made over 150 edits. Should be fine. -Barras talk 22:21, 16 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
It seems Global sysops voterchecker generates false negatives. Your vote is valid, you just put it in too early. I've notified VasilievVV. Paradoctor 23:21, 16 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Okay thanks, I'll try to vote again. --すけ 04:46, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
See also AccountEligibility when you need to check what globalsysopsvoter says. —Pathoschild 05:22:59, 17 January 2010 (UTC)
Good to have this one, voterchecker insists even now that すけ is ineligible. Paradoctor 05:50, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I doubt it. The editor should match criteria by the beginning of the vote, otherwise the edit count criteria won't work at all ("need 150 edits? OK, let's tweak my userpage a bit"). vvvt 08:41, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Hello Vasiliev. I agree that there should be an earlier cutoff date, but there isn't one. The requirement is only for 150 edits, therefore logically this applies at the time of voting. It is not fair to disqualify voters after the fact based on what the requirement should have been, rather than what it is. —Pathoschild 10:07:11, 17 January 2010 (UTC)
Cutoff should count from the beginning of the vote, not from the end (I also believe I struck some votes of users registered in October). vvvt 10:27, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I am kind of involved in this since I struck out the vote. It does appear he is able to vote as 3 months has passed on a wiki he has 530 edits on. --Bsadowski1 10:09, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
(e/c) I think すけ is ineligible because their account was created after 1 October 2009, which is three months from the beginning of the vote. If the edits ja:特別:投稿記録/すけ are the same person, then すけ is eligible. John Vandenberg 10:11, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Ah, I am getting confused with the after and before then. I just followed by what the tool said. --Bsadowski1 10:15, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
John, the problem is that the rules do not specify a date at which there must be 150 edits. Vasiliev assumed they were counted as of January 1st, whereas I assumed they were counted as of the vote itself. There is no cutoff specified in the rules, so I think they should be counted at vote time. すけ is eligible if there is no prior cutoff, or ineligible if there is an implicit cutoff.
Either way, this should be clarified in the rules. —Pathoschild 10:40:15, 17 January 2010 (UTC)
I agree we need to clarify this, and I don't mind which interpretation we go with.
However, すけ has 150 edits from before January 1 on a single project.[2]
John Vandenberg 10:54, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

It does not say anything about a date. It JUST says 150 edits and 3 months. Not more. I am following the rules. If you delete my vote you are making an act of vandalism against the rules. I am just following what it was written. --すけ 13:41, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Are we seriously considering changing the rules AFTER voting has begun? This is incredible. 'must have 150 edits' was pretty clear and there is no assumption there that it applies from January 1st. Yes a January 1st rule would have made perfect sense but if that's what you wanted then it should have been stated from the start. This is a shambles.--Xania 02:05, 19 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
You're quite right that this should have been stated from the outset, however the rule applies to all equally - changing how it is applied now would be a bad idea, so we'll continue applying it as we have throughout the whole vote period, and clarify how it applies in the text of the intro.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 01:34, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Yes but how it has been applied so far is not right - the rule never stated that the date for calculating the length of time a user had been on the project was 3 months before January 1st. If that's what was intended then that should have been clarified before the vote started. I agree that a fixed date is the best option but that wasn't specified before the vote commenced. Any votes made by a user are valid if that user had been on the project for 3 months before the date they voted and if they had met the other conditions (edit count).--Xania 20:29, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Criteria clarification[edit]

Since we found that eligibility criteria may be interpreted in different ways, I suggest to clarify it:

All members of the Wikimedia community who met all of the following criteria by 1 January 2010 are invited to vote on the global sysops proposal

I think this is approach we usually use for such criteria. vvvt 15:19, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

You realize all the votes will need to be checked again, right? I'd volunteer, but it's a lot. I already found quite a few whose "edit #150" was after Jan 1... Seb az86556 15:48, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
You should change the note to clarify that in the page. --すけ 16:01, 17 January 2010 (UTC) I would consider this vote as a fudge and invalid.Reply
I may build list of people who pass disputed (either registered in October 2009 or has made 150th edit after 01 January 2010), so we can strike them out. vvvt 17:51, 17 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
If this isn't supposed to be a vote (as is continually pointed out by many people on here( what is the point in this restriction? You say that consensus is weighing up all the arguments so why are the arguments and opinions of a less frequent user (one who's made less than 150 edits) less important? Why not make the restriction a more round 10,000 edits and that way the proposer and friends can ensure that their proposal / power grab is successful? I am being ironic here but seriously why are we discounting the opinions of such people?--Xania 02:02, 19 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I don't meet the three month requirement but everytime I login, there is the invite. This is a little annoying. I would love to vote for it because vandels are just a neausance. My $0.02. -- 02:22, 19 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
This one? Picture of the invitation, --すけ 02:47, 19 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I'm sorry, vvvt, this isn't clarifying the voting rules - it's changing them part way through an election, which is quite ridiculous. Whether or not you intended to include people reaching 150 edits and/or 3 months of registration after 1 January is immaterial - accept the rules as they were written. Changes at this stage will only call the validity of the process into question. --(RT) 00:04, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
No, it is a clarification. This is how the rule has been applied throughout the whole voting period. Allowing the requirements to change during the election is a bad idea, but that's the exact opposite of what's going on here.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 01:32, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The rules as written - which every voter will have seen - do not mention 1 January as the qualification date. (Perhaps they should have done, but they didn't). If you have been applying 1 January, despite the fact it is not stated, then I would suggest the application has been in error and at odds with the wording. --(RT) 02:14, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Question: People's votes have also been struck due to having registered after October 1 (and nobody protested) -- are you suggesting that this cut-off-line should also be moved to October 31 as long as the vote was cast on January 31? Seb az86556 08:11, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
What I am saying is that if you apply the rules as written, the test should be whether at the time of voting someone has (a) 150 edits and (b) 3 months registration. So, yes, if they vote on January 31 then qualification would be October 31. I don't like a rolling qualification date, but that's what we've got. Altering the meaning of the wording now would seriously call the election process into doubt IMO. Reinstating a few incorrectly struck out votes seems to be the least pernicious alternative. --(RT) 12:18, 20 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
My vote is being removed because I am following a written rule. Where can I expose to the community my disagree and this abuse of editing? If you want to remove my edit according to a rule that does not exist in this vote you have a problem. One editor can't say "I erase your vote because there is something that I know and you did't aware of that is not written in the rule". Where can I put this case of vandalism against my vote? Thanks. --すけ 19:33, 21 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Vote on the Global sysops proposal
Read this before you vote!
Please make sure you you qualify to vote:
You need to log in with a unified account or have a link to your home wiki user page on your local user page.
Have an account created before October 1st 2009 (3 months before the start of the vote)
Have an account with 150 or more edits on a Wikimedia Foundation Wiki
You can check to see if you qualify by visiting the suffrage checker.
If you are not eligible to vote please feel free to comment on the discussion page
Well they changed it in the edit page. I'm starting to think about the validity of this vote and if they are going to do that again abusing with this "new" interwiki "Global Sysops" project. --すけ 20:49, 21 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I would agree. I don't think that this vote can be considered as valid anymore. The rules are being rewritten after the vote has started, people voting against the vote are having their reasoning questioned whilst those voting in favour of it are free to simply add their name rather than reasoning, not all translations were done before the vote started (many still haven't been done) plus the very fact that most people voting here don't even use the "smaller" wikis also doesn't sit right.--Xania 23:16, 21 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Agreed too. The Edit Page now mentions the October 1 as the date of qualification, although that's not (yet) in the multilingual header on the Vote page itself. It attempts to change the rules part way through the election. Plus there was clearly no consensus here on the Talk Page to make the change - so I hope that it's reconsidered quickly. --(RT) 23:43, 21 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
We must consider if the status of "steward" is well given according to this vote and how it is directed and if these abuses are also given in an environment of interwiki with the upcoming status of global sysop. --すけ 03:22, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Stewards are elected annually since 2004 (see upcoming election), and their election has nothing to do with this vote. —Pathoschild 03:46:10, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
They can change the code direct to the wiki. As it is done in the "edit" page in the vote, --すけ 03:51, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Any administrator on this wiki can edit the edit notice at MediaWiki:Editnotice-0-Global sysops-Vote. The change was requested at Meta:Requests for help from a sysop or bureaucrat#Edit notice for Global sysops/Vote, and implemented by Dferg (a local administrator). —Pathoschild 03:57:48, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Thanks for answering with that. Then you can change my sentence's word "steward" to "admin/sysop". I appreciate your clarification. I apologize for mixing stewards with admins, thank you, --すけ 04:05, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
You're welcome. Anyone can edit the edit notice at Template:Gsvote editnotice, which is transcluded in MediaWiki:Editnotice-0-Global sysops-Vote. The last change to the edit notice was January 13th. —Pathoschild 04:11:31, 24 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks Pathoschild, for the pointing out the template location. I can see that this edit box first appeared on January 13 apparently specifying for the first time January 1 qualification date. Something like 1500 votes were cast before that point, and currently 280+ votes since - which makes things even more messy. Obviously the best thing would have been for the rules to be clearly and unambiguously stated from the start - quite how it can be sorted out now is unclear. At present we have:
1. A set of wording appearing in the Vote page multilingual header which states just that 3 months registration and 150 edits are required. It does not specify that the 3 months or the 150 edits need to be reached by January 1.
2. The wording in the edit box, shown since January 13 which specifes that the 3 months qualification needs to reached by January 1. It does not specify when the 150 needs to be reached. Furthermore this box is only available in English.
3. The proposed wording by vvvt above which would mean that both the 3 month qualification and the 150 edits should be by January 1.--(RT) 14:45, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Since various people have already gone through and struck out votes based on the by-January-1st interpretation, I updated AccountEligibility to match it. —Pathoschild 05:05:51, 04 February 2010 (UTC)

"XYZ contributes to a wiki that would be affected"[edit]

I don't belive my eyes. Which Big Brother has done this? Unbeleavable. This is pure Wikistalking, horrible monitoring. Once again the user rights are stepped with feet. It's not important for anybody in which Wiki I work! I require that this will be put away immediately! Marcus Cyron 15:46, 22 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Others disagree. It does matter. Hence the tagging. Seb az86556 16:06, 22 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The additional transparency is very useful. At the end of this vote there will very likely be people who are saying that this vote is ridiculous because it is being held mainly among people who have never contributed to any of the wikis in question. --Yair rand 17:48, 22 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
There are countless tools people can use to find out which wikis you contribute to, so it's not "wikistalking" or "monitoring"... –Juliancolton | Talk 19:45, 22 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I do suggest we add "this user does not contribute to any affected projects" tags as well :) ^demon 17:51, 26 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
oh god please no it's big enough :/ :) Jamesofur Public 17:56, 26 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I would add the "this user is male/female" tag too. --すけ 10:49, 27 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Ah-hem! I assume it was mere oversight that you didn't say "male/female/unspecified"? We could of course be even more precise. ;) Paradoctor 21:33, 27 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Current Godwin factor[edit]

As of 10:10, 24 January 2010 the Godwin factor amounts to:

"Hitler": 3
"Nazi": 7

rursus 12:42, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

FYI I also found 2 "Stalin". ;-) rursus 12:56, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I also brought up 1x apartheid and feel discriminated against for not having been noticed :P Seb az86556 18:41, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I also found a useless topic in this discussion. --すけ 23:28, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Killjoy :( Seb az86556 23:50, 24 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Voting should only be a tool[edit]

Voting should only be a tool to determine consensus. Rule by consensus is a core value that arises from the fundamental "anyone can edit". We do not run by majority rule, but by consensus. I oppose any 'vote' procedure which does not explicitly acknowledge this. Pedant 18:56, 25 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

I agree wholeheartedly (see my userpage, for example) - and I'm sure reasons (and not just headcounts) will be taken into consideration when deciding upon a course of action. We'll be asking a steward who hasn't been involved in the drafting process to handle the wrap-up to avoid perceptions of conflict of interest.  — Mike.lifeguard | @en.wb 19:08, 25 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Whilst I think simple voting can lead to popularism (not a good thing) I don't think Wikimedia's brand of "consensus" is necessarily the right way forward. On Wikipedia (and other Wikimedia projects) consensus generally means that it's the decision of the administrators or long term editors because "they know better" or because they were better able to "express their opinions". It's this domination by sysops and other very regular editors which is putting people off Wikipedia and this is yet another reason why this proposal is a bad thing - because it will create even more of these types of user. I guess the point of your post wasn't to discuss voting vs consensus but rather to state that you believe the voting page should clearly state that this is not about numbers but about reaching a consensus - on this agree. References to a "vote" (it's even in the name of the page) aren't really correct, are they? But the problem with consensus is who decides what the consensus actually is? Some may say that 1300 Yes to 400 No clearly shows support but who knows, who decides and do we trust the Steward/Bureaucrat/Sysop who makes the decision?--Xania 01:06, 26 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

3 Days to go and still a shambles[edit]

Apparently this vote finishes on 31st January yet neither the proposers nor sysops on Meta have fixed any of the outstanding problems related to this 'vote'. Problems which still haven't been addressed:

  • The fact that some people are discounting votes made by people who hadn't been on a Wiki at least 3 months before January 1st despite the original rules not mentioning January 1st at all.
  • The fact that translations for lots of languages were not made before the vote started. If all translations hadn't been done then the vote shouldn't have started.
  • The fact that anybody is allowed to vote here regardless of whether they even contribute to a Wiki which might be affected by this proposal
  • That many people voting in opposition to the proposal were questioned about their reasoning yet those voting in favour were free to simply add their signature rather than any explanation.
  • It hasn't been mentioned who's going to decide the result of the vote
  • Attempts were made to alter the wording of this proposal after the vote had commenced which is entirely inappropriate - if you want to change the wording then finish the vote and start again.

I'm guessing that the lack of responses to these concerns (not all raised by myself) means that the original proposers know that the proposal will fail regardless of the number who have voted in favour. How is someone meant to determine consensus if most of those voting in favour haven't stated their reasons for their vote? Xania 21:05, 28 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Consensus is not to be determined. This is a vote. It was decided in a backwater that 80% is a good threshold. It was a goof-up not to declare this more publicly, but it shouldn't matter much, given that it's the norm for Meta policy proposals. All that needs to be done after the vote is validate the voters. From there, a result should be clear and indisputable. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 13:47, 30 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
This is a farce. So now we're saying that it is a vote despite many comments from people talking about consensus. And what about the other points raised? Making this proposal into a vote is very bad considering that it is a proposal that affects small wikis yet most of the votes come from big wiki users - this would be one instance where consensus would be appropriate. Doesn't matter much anyway as we all know that whatever sysops or beaurocrats want, they'll get in the end anyway.--Xania 14:16, 30 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I'm not sure how it could be more clear that this is a vote. Read the title. Let the first man who complains about the vote be the one to judge consensus among 1,900 community members, many of whom have failed to comment in what was advertised as a vote. It's just not possible, and neither is it suitable. The majority of large decisions on Meta are made by way of a vote: Steward elections, licensing update proposals, and logo changes, to name a few. Your last remark is needlessly cynical; bureaucrats or not, we have no way of bending the laws of mathematics. As it is, this proposal looks set to dip below 80% and fail. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 15:04, 30 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
Wait a minute. With my talks with the stewards, it was indicated that we try to incorporate our standard consensus based systems in addition to a vote. A voting system is flawed for many many reasons; see the sections above you for why. This proposal is trending around 77.5% at the moment, with a bunch of people who are voting on flawed information or quite un-understandable rationales ("I understand the need for more people engaged with wikipedia, but don't se how this proposal would solve the problem", "unless the persons elected as global sysops are required to understand the language of every project they are involved in." "This proposal gives me far too much insight into what ruined DMOZ." "If a project can't find enough volunteers to accept admin rights on their own, there would have to be some question as to whether that project is viable."), along with people who have reasonable opposes ("Globalblock affects all wikis, should not be given to this group", etc.) I would think it would make more sense to pass a slightly modified version of this proposal, without global block. NW (Talk) 15:47, 30 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
It seems that talks about consensus have been occurring here and at Talk:Global sysops. That being the case, I much register my strongest opposition to the suggestion that the decision should be based on anything but numerical evaluation. The participants voted thinking that this is a vote. To omit the information that an 80% support:oppose ratio is to be required for the proposal to pass is one thing; to neglect to mention that the vote is to be judged by way of "consensus" is another. Recall that because this is a vote, participants were not required to make any comment at all. Therefore, the reasoning given by those who did comment is entirely immaterial. The people who voted without making a comment may have the best—or the worst—reasons in the world for their decision. We just don't know; and it makes a consensus-based evaluation unfair and impossible. This was advertised as a vote (even in the page title). To judge it any other way would be to betray the participants and to spoil the integrity of the process organised here. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 01:42, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
"participants voted thinking that this is a vote": May I meekly submit that I didn't? May I also submit that IMHO, this is very probably true for a lot of other participants in the vote? Paradoctor 02:36, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
The mere fact that there is disagreement on these points shows that something went wrong... Seb az86556 03:41, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
This vote was hastily implemented and poorly considered in the first place, and now that it's coming to an end, we're going to start feeling the effects of that. That we've not even decided the required percentage of support for success leaves me with little confidence that this will actually get anywhere. –Juliancolton | Talk 04:00, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
80% is Meta's norm. I cannot conceive of an argument for any other threshold. The contention is purely a product of the suggestion we should compromise the definition of a vote and attempt to find consensus where it is not applicable. I'll submit that it is not likely that many participants took part thinking this isn't a vote, since this event was advertised everywhere as a vote, and nowhere as a discussion. Each to his own. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 04:29, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
I'll be totally honest, given some people's responses and complaints I'm not sure there IS a way that this could have been designed where a vocal minority wouldn't have called it a sham and a way for the big wikis to grab power (I am not in anyway saying the specific people in this discussion are like that). Does that mean mistakes weren't made? Of course not, it is quite obvious that we lacked specific dates/numbers and that opened up more complaints. Personally I think it is less of a problem then some (from my research it doesn't appear that changing the cut off date by a month would have changed much). I personally THINK that the date was meant to be based on January 1st but there is no doubt we never actually said that anywhere. I also think it is quite clear that alot of people do not want Global Blocking (as much as I think it should be) , and tbh we would probably have gotten the 80% without that and so I would personally not have a major problem if the stewards/foundation decided that consensus was here to enact without Global blocks and went ahead with that. That being said, I can totally understand why people would have a problem with that.
I have to admit that I sort of think it will be kind of hard to find an active steward who is totally neutral on this to close, I personally would love if Cary or someone from the foundation made the decision but I doubt they want to (and don't blame them). On a slight tangent I don't think that it would have made total sense to just limit this to people from smaller wikis. There is significant overlap between people from smaller wikis and people from bigger wikis and trying to determine who is from one would be difficult (except of course the people who only edit on en or something). You would also run into the problem of WHO counts as a small wiki since I fully expect that if the position was created some bigger wikis would have opted into it to help with vandalism and some smaller wikis would have opted out because their sysops are active enough not to have a problem with vandalism (or, as in some projects, they just don't have ANY problem with vandalism. James (T C) 05:10, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply
James, I think that is a very fair summary.
  • I agree that some opponents of the scheme would be likely to attack the process as a sham come what may - however if the rules had been well designed, such attacks would just look like gamesmanship. But it would have been possible to avoid my complaints on this Talk Page about (a) the lack of translations and (b) the vote eligibility criteria. I concede on the latter point it probably affected very few votes in the end, but it illustrates that the process was not well thought through. Also, if the 80% threshhold had been stated officially in it would have avoided a lot of fuss too.
  • Would you have got 80% if Global Block had not been included? Possibly. For me it was a concern, but not the biggest issue. Personally I might have been persuaded if (1) All wikis had to opt-in, preserving local autonomy and (2) Proper election/selection and accountabily procedures for Global Sysops had been designed and explained in advance. Both are issues of accountability and democracy. I also think you might have won over more skeptics if you had provided stats and facts about the degree of inter-wiki vandalism, etc.
  • Like you, I agree it would not have made sense to limit the vote just to small wikis. Firstly, all wikis would have been affected by diverting resource into Global Sysops. Secondly, any use of Global Block could affect larger wiki members too. Thirdly, a vote just by the small wikis still does not get away from the fact some small wikis could have the proposal imposed on them - which is why I feel it is better for each wiki separately to decide whether to opt-in (after any in-principle decision here). As you say, some small wikis would have probably have opted-out and some large ones opted-in.
  • Sadly, I also think you might be right about the percieved lack of neutrality of stewards here. Better designed voting rules could have reduced many of them being drawn into the controversy. Tighter limits on comments in the Vote section of the list would have helped too.
So was it all a waste of time and energy? I hope not. There are many good ideas throughout the Vote page which could be used to design a better proposal to be put to a vote in future. Alternative ways of providing more assistance to small wikis may now be explored too. Also, I feel there are quite a few previously uninvolved people who have contributed here (on both sides of the argument and from many wikis) that would be willing assist in looking at the options. --(RT) 16:34, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

OH NO! Not logged in![edit]

I have dedicated the month to reaching the eligibility guidelines for this vote (150 edits), but now I am logged in on this page, all the other meta pages, but NOT the voting page, perhaps because the unified login isn't successful for me.Us441 13:28, 30 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

You do have a unified account... if you notice yourself logged in on other pages then most likely your browser's cache isn't loading the page with the logged-in account. -- Mentifisto 02:18, 31 January 2010 (UTC)Reply

Final summary[edit]

This is an unofficial summary, not the closure of the vote. I myself don't feel strongly about either implementation or rejection.

The proposal has attracted roughly 1880 eligible voters, with a 1446:434 or 76.9% support ratio. While this suggests reasonable support, counting votes does not accurately represent the opinions of those commenting. Following is a summary of the points raised throughout the discussion, their prevalence and importance to the participants, and a few possible changes that address some of these concerns. (The summary is long but densely packed.)

I will not distinguish between users immediately affected or unaffected by the proposal, because this is more a global proposal than a multi-wiki proposal: affected wikis can opt out, and unaffected wikis can opt in. Serious points raised by users ineligible to vote are included, but not counted above.

Arguments in favour: Most supporting users added no comment or repeated the benefits described in the proposed text. The most common advantages cited were reducing vandalism or helping smaller wikis (7.3%), reducing stewards' workload (2.1%), and the ability of wikis to opt out (1.5%). Several supporters saw no disadvantages (1.3%), or noted the decreased need for more stewards (0.6%), well-defined limits to global sysop rights usage (0.6%), and the availability of steward oversight (0.5%). Less common points were forging a stronger crosswiki community (0.3%), multilingualism not being needed to spot vandalism (0.3%), the possibility of abolishing global sysops if the system fails (0.3%), global sysops being a quick and easy solution for a shortage of stewards (0.3%), and the inactivity clause (0.2%). Several more rare opinions are listed in my rough notes, but not mentioned here.

Many arguing in favour did have reservations. They stressed the importance of carefully selecting candidates (14.5%) and avoiding overbearing superadmins or dictators (7.6%), were skeptical about global block permissions which extend beyond affected wikis (0.2%), and were concerned about possible misunderstandings due to the language barrier (0.1%), the need for transparency (0.1%), and the need to recognize local sysops' priority in making local decisions (0.1%). Minority concerns included avoiding interfering with larger wikis, insufficiently inclusive automatic-opt-in criteria, the possibility of global sysop burnout, the need to minimize global block lengths, and the need for term limits.

Anoopkn summarized many commentators' attitudes when he said, "More policemen might not imply a more peaceful world, but perhaps thats one of the better things we can do".

Arguments against & discussion: Not surprisingly, opponents of the proposal were much more verbose. The most common concerns were that global sysops could not recognize abuse in languages they can't read and that different wikis have different standards and policies (12%), and the introduction of unneeded bureaucracy or hierarchy or management (9.9%). Many feared overbearing superadmins or dictators or crosswiki meddlers, or felt global sysops could not be trusted not to abuse their access (8.8%). Many saw the proposal as a concentration of power into an elitist group (8.3%), and objected to the inclusion of the 'global block' right which affects every wiki (7.3%).

Many felt that local communities should be allowed to take care of their own wiki without interference (6.9%). Several were concerned that the opt-out process was undefined (5.5%), though a proposal to require five voters was rejected. Many suggested closing wikis outright if they couldn't take care of themselves (4.8%). Several preferred election more stewards (4.4%), felt global sysops should be opt-in only (4.4%), felt they had far too much power (3.4%), or felt there was no need for global sysops (3.2%).

Several felt global sysops would be a form of imperialism on the part of larger, mostly English wikis (2.5%). Some wanted less inclusive auto-opt-in limits (2.1%), felt "uncontroversial maintenance" was too vague (1.3%), thought it should be discussed more widely before a vote (0.9%), felt it would drive away smaller-wiki users (0.9%), or suggested the vote was invalid due to midway changes or biased layout (0.9%). Minority concerns included that this was being forced onto smaller wikis by the larger wikis (0.7%), that it would make local adminship more difficult to obtain (0.5%), that global sysops should be tracked to prevent abuse (0.5%), that there should be some way to resolve disputes or discuss global sysops (0.5%), and that term limits were needed.

Supporters' responses to these points, and various points only raised once, are noted in my rough notes.

A few quotes help summarise common sentiments amongst opponents: "I'd rather see little maintenance rather than poor maintenance" (Zhouf12); "The majority of the people attracted to such power are exactly the kind of people we do not need" (Trackinfo); "When in doubt, vote against" (ShawnIsHere); "It sounds like a conspiracy theory to take over the world almost" (Presidentman); and "I, for example, wouldn't recognize vandalism in Russian or Tagalog if it bit me in the butt" (SMcCandlish).

Proposed changes: Many of the concerns are about issues inherent in the global sysop proposal, and cannot easily be addressed.

However, global blocking was a concern for both supporters and opponents. This would allow global sysops to block IP addresses on all wikis, regardless of which wikis they are normally limited to. Global blocking must be used very carefully, and I have often seen potential candidates ask for 6-month global blocks when a 2-hour block was sufficient. Global blocking should be removed from the proposal; global sysops can continue to ask stewards when a global block is needed.

Clarifications are needed for opting out, dispute resolution, communicating with or discussing global sysops, and appealing or reporting global sysop actions. Tools to track global sysop actions on affected wikis would allow concerned users to watch for potential abuse. Although only mentioned a few times, term limits (as implemented by en-wikisource) and wider elections may ease many opponents' concerns of a perpetual, English-dominated oligarchy. Wider use of Melancholie's Global notifications or my Synchbot would allow smaller wikis to more easily keep track of crosswiki developments, by having regular reports placed on a specified local page.

Other ideas for addressing the objections raised are welcome. —Pathoschild 05:57:00, 02 February 2010 (UTC)

This is a good summary. (I summarized major concerns raised in my own rough notes, which you captured above). After removing global blocking, and adding clarifications and more detail on points of confusion, it would be good to get feedback from contributors who had been opposed to or unclear about the original. Sj+ help translate 20:41, 2 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Global blocks[edit]

Global blocks are probably the best way to derail vandalism or spamming of the type where a person edits one article in many wikis within a short time. For those who monitor on IRC it will often be possible to early on see that the edits are bad and that someone seems to be aiming to add his link to lots of articles with interwikilinks to for instance af:Sint Petersburg (like this). If someone could global block the IP for a short time it would possibly stop the vandal or spammer before he gets around to edit lots of wikis, and save us lots of reverting, deleting and disruption.

I was doing SWMT work before there was any global block tool (for stewards), and it was very frustraiting. The need for such a tool became very obvious.

Global blocking of IPs is also a very heavy and crude tool. It should indeed be used very carefully.

To me the best would be for Global sysops to be able to do global blocks, but only very short ones. Maybe tops an hour, or just 15 minutes. ---Jorunn 13:39, 2 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Global blocking was the main reason for my vote against Global Sysops. I'm sure that Global sysops can be a good help, but an instrument like GB may be very dangerous, if used in wrong way or not carefully. In my small and honest opinion, some restrictments are needed. --Roberto Segnali all'Indiano 13:57, 4 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Just count the votes[edit]

It seems a bit premature to call something a Final Summary - even if it is unofficial - when there are still votes to be checked. I know the numbers aren't everything, but the do matter - don't they? --(RT) 23:30, 2 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Not much. I'll update the single sentence in my summary counting votes when you're done. —Pathoschild 01:43:23, 03 February 2010 (UTC)
Yea as Pathoschild said the only thing that changes above is the actual vote numbers since he basically ignored who was "eligible" when determining what the comments said which makes sense. James (T C) 01:54, 3 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

I would think it very poor form if a modified proposal were passed without another vote. We set the bar at 80%; to respond to a deficit in the support percentage by changing the proposal and passing it anyway is not fair game, if you ask me. Or did we set it at 80%? The way we're talking now seems to indicate the notion of a straight vote has been rejected somewhere along the line. This is not much good either, as I've tried to explain a few sections above. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 05:40, 3 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Where did we set it as 80% from what I've seen that was just a random made up number touted as "what it always is". Should we have probably set it down somewhere? Yea probably but I don't think we did. I know I personally said I'd prefer it not to be a straight vote but I'm also pretty certain that wasn't decided on. As Pathochild said this is a summary of the comments not a final decision on how it should be closed. Regardless on how it is closed it is a very useful piece in my opinion. Jamesofur Public 06:19, 3 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I can't comprehend why there's any ambiguity as to the fact that this process was a vote. It was advertised as a vote, it was drafted up as a vote, the title is "Vote", and we had people placing votes in a vote-like fashion (no comment from many people) in a vote list. A "straight vote" is the assumption here; when we say "vote", the interpretation is the same one the rest of the world has. If we meant for a consensus-based discussion, I assume we'd be having this conversation at Talk:Global sysops/Discussion instead. Not to close it as a vote would constitute a breach of confidence for everyone who participated under the impression that the process advertised would be the process judged. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 10:33, 3 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
Let me be clear: I do not have, and have never had, any objection to a hypothetical consensus-based process for the decision in question. My point (and my objection) is that we have an obligation not to change the nature of any process after the fact. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 10:44, 3 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I probably need a citation to back me up, or someone to tell me if what I'm talking about is not really applicable to this, but this sounds to me like "If vote is between 75% to 80% (85%?) then weigh the arguments", because anything between 75% and 80% is really too close to call.
Or I'm completely full of it, in which case, carry on. 20:27, 3 February 2010 (UTC)— The preceding unsigned comment was added by Bastique (talk)
This has always been my thought of "how we tend to do it" but I also don't exactly have something to back me up on it atm. I will fully admit we were not totally clear on exact specifics of numbers etc for the vote, we kinda pulled the 80% number out of our ass (and I think I said around 80% at least once) but we didn't even do that until after the vote had begun. I know I voted with the thought that it wasn't a totally up/down set in stone vote but I obviously can't speak for others (and as I already said I kinda assume EVERYTHING in WMF is a bit of a !vote). Jamesofur Public 20:43, 3 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
"Where did it say that 80% was required?" someone has asked. Look up on this page just a few sections above and that's where. But the point is that it was never clear what the hell this was - the title clearly says a vote and many have spouted that 80% is required in such votes yet others have mentioned the old consensus argument. Now of course we've got people saying that 75-80% is "too close to call". Maybe they should have mentioned that in 2000 when Bush stole an election or for pretty much any election in many countries. Still others are claiming that maybe the proposal can be approved if we simply withdraw the global block thing - no it can't. If you want to change the proposal then you vote again. Fears about WMF and other wikis becoming a dictatorship are true - especially, it seems, here on WMF where it's not that rules are being changed along the way rather that the rules aren't even stated before hand. Of course I understand that the above is just a preliminary analysis of the vote but I'm assuming that it's pretty accurate (as it's likely that disqualified votes will be removed from BOTH sides of the argument) so it appears that the vote (if it's a vote) has failed (if the 80% is the rule) and if someone doesn't invent some other rule or try to reword the proposal again. Just be grateful that the world isn't run by wikimedians otherwise it'd be even more of a mess than it already is. Rant over.--Xania 00:12, 4 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I have been attempting to check through all the votes over the last few days, although I have no official role in the process. Since the vote closed, I am not aware of much checking by anyone else. It might be worth noting that nearly all the No votes had been checked over quite thoroughly during the vote, so few disqualfications or reinstatements were necessary there. However quite extensive sections of the Yes vote had not been checked at all - and a fair number of ineligible votes were found. The latest counts are Yes 1402 (76.4%) and No 432 (23.6%) - but I stress that the process is not quite complete. Once I'm done, I will report here more fully. But hopefully some sort of independent scrutiny will also be undertaken. --(RT) 01:46, 4 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I, too have started going through the no-votes from bottom to top, and as (RT) points out, there aren't that many struck votes because there aren't that many ineligible votes. I don't want to add to the length of the page, but I could add a checkmark... Seb az86556 02:01, 4 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
We've probably duplicated our efforts! - but that's not such a bad thing. I quite like the checkmark idea, but going back will slow things down a bit. --(RT) 02:28, 4 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
See the new {{eligible}} [✓ eligible] and {{not eligible}} [✖ not eligible] templates. I converted a few at the top of the Yes section as examples. —Pathoschild 05:49:15, 04 February 2010 (UTC)
Interesting idea, but I do not want to remove existing comments regarding eligibility, which in some cases contain considerably more information (eg secondary links and explanation), and are records in themselves (they can be struck out if they're wrong). Neither do I want to remove the strikethrough style which is useful visually. What I think is useful is a small additional mark against every record indicating that it had been checked and the original decision (if any) approved or changed plus the signature of the checker. Will look into this further... --(RT) 13:08, 4 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

80% was never decided on; as far as I'm aware, someone pulled that number out of thin air. –Juliancolton | Talk 00:52, 5 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Never clearly perhaps, but what about here? --(RT) 01:26, 5 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
The origins of the figure are not significant. The fact that it's used for most of Meta's voting processes is what matters, and the fact that there is not a convincing reason to deviate from it. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 11:21, 5 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I don't agree. I've read «a non-partisan review will be undertaken» exactly as «we won't just count votes», so I don't think that it's obvious that we will just count votes. Anyway, I've checked all votes against (without adding annoying templates): there are 26 user accounts without SUL and with no link from the local user page to the Meta one (or viceversa); I've notified them all (well, there's also one more unlinked account of a troll). --Nemo 18:17, 6 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
  • A non-partisan review of the whole process should be undertaken - but we do need to complete checking the votes first. Any input you provide which helps check the votes is therefore welcome.
  • The issue you raise of non-SUL accounts is clearly an important one which needs to be considered for both Yes and No voters. In the edit box (added part way through the vote process on January 13) it instructs users without SUL logins to provide a link, but the instructions in the multilingual header (present since the start of the vote) make no mention of this - though they probably should have done. Nevertheless I accept we need some kind of evidence that a qualifying user account actually belongs to a voter. Certainly I think those who are checking the votes need to pay attention to the matter - I shall certainly review those I have checked to date. --(RT) 00:36, 7 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I think I've now identified all votes which do not have SUL logins or links: In addition to the 26 No votes identified above, 45 Yes votes were in the same position. All have now been flagged on the Vote page; and they have been notified on their home wiki talk pages. We will now need to allow a short time for them to respond before deciding whether their votes are valid or need to be struck. I am not entirely happy with this method (now that the vote is closed), but can see no other equitable way of doing it. Once this issue is resolved, there should be little else preventing final totals being reported here. --(RT) 13:35, 9 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Moving forward[edit]

The process of checking voter eligibility should take a few more weeks, if we're lucky. (The virtues of automated voting are presently very clear; alas.) Thanks for your patience, and thanks to the volunteers who are dedicating their time to the task. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 07:20, 18 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Would I appear grumpy if I said "told you so"? ;) Paradoctor 10:48, 18 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I am quite sure automatic voting or checking could be faster (with the proviso that it properly tested to avoid errors) - however the manual checks are essentially done. The only reason it is not complete now is that a limited number of voters needed to be contacted (ie those without SUL accounts or links, for the reasons noted above). Most were notified on the 6th or 9th, but the final few were notified on February 16 - so to be fair we must give them a day or two to respond. Be assured it will not take two weeks - and, believe me, I am very keen to get this done just as soon as possible. --(RT) 21:31, 18 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I will also go over a few more. Suggest a wrap-up this weekend. What say ye? Seb az86556 22:03, 18 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
I would agree. --(RT) 22:39, 18 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
Alright. We're aiming for Sunday, 21st 23:59(UTC) = "Last Call" Seb az86556 23:45, 18 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Announcement of checked results[edit]

After conducting a complete and thorough check of all the votes cast the figures are as follows:

  • Total valid votes cast: 1802
  • For the proposal (Yes): 1385 (76.9%)
  • Against the proposal (No): 417 (23.1%)

Checking and eligibility[edit]

During the voting period a variety of checks were carried out by a number of different users. Most of these proved to be accurate, however there were some inconsistencies and checking was incomplete. Starting on January 30, therefore, I undertook a complete review of all the votes cast; two other checkers have also assisted considerably in this process.

To be considered valid, a vote needed to meet the eligibility criteria set out from the start of the vote on January 1 in the multilingual header at the head of the Vote page:

All members of the Wikimedia community who meet all of the following criteria are invited to vote  on the global sysops proposal:
* Must have had a registered account for at least 3 months
* 150 edits on at least one project

All validated votes do indeed meet these criteria. However a number of problems were caused by omissions from this statement:

  1. No date was mentioned by which the 3 months qualification had to be reached; it was therefore most reasonable for voters to understand that 3 months was prior to the time when they voted. Nevertheless during the vote period, several checkers assumed that the 3-month period should be reached by October 1, 2009; and on January 13 (after most votes had been cast) an edit notice was added explicitly stating this. Because this instruction was added late, I believe it would be grossly unfair to enforce it. Fortunately very few votes were affected by this issue as most users registering during October 2009 had not achieved 150 edits.
  2. The original eligibility criteria also make no mention of logging in to vote - however this is absolutely essential to identify a user and check their eligibility. Helpfully, IP votes were quite well policed during the vote providing voters' with an opportunity to log in. Also, from January 13 the reminder in the edit notice helped cut the number of IP voters.
  3. Similarly, no mention is made in the original eligibility criteria of SUL logins or links to other wiki projects - yet without such links it would be difficult to know whether a Meta user was one and the same as someone on another project. Over 1500 votes were cast before instructions were added to the edit notice on the 13 January, so checkers had to make a choice between (a) disqualifying some votes without a SUL account or link even though voters were unaware of the requirement or (b) notifying them. The latter route was considered the fairest approach - and a total of 75 users were notified that an SUL account or link was needed before their vote could be verified. Of this number 44 responded, the remaining 31 votes have been struck out.

In summary, the checking process was complicated by incomplete and changing instructions; however I believe an accurate, consistent and just solution has been found.


Although the multilingual header makes no mention of the what is needed for the Global Sysops proposal to pass, it does appear to have been agreed prior to the Vote that 80% was required. This would also follow Meta norms. It would therefore appear to be the case that the proposal in its current form has not been passed. Nevertheless the whole process should now be subject to 'non-partisan review'.

I'm still not sure how 80% was decided upon. It seems like somebody just wrote a number down and nobody objected (or perhaps a couple people informally agreed). –Juliancolton | Talk 00:15, 22 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
There was a bit of discussion. Not enough, though; this was definitely a flaw in the planning. That aside, a threshold percentage is a definitional component of a vote, and I can't think of an argument for a deviation from the project's norm. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 06:50, 22 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
What a wishy-washy summary of the vote. I'm not blaming the person who wrote this because he was constrained by the totally piss poor organization of this vote before it started and during. With the exception of Florida in 2000 and Ukraine in 2005 I have never seen such a messed up and corrupt vote. Votes were removed because the user who voted didn't realise that he needed an SUL account yet wasn't contacted to verify his vote until after voting had ended and even then some people didn't respond in time (understandable as most of us aren't on wiki every day). Some people voting against the argument were hassled to give their reasons yet no reasoning was necessary for supporters. The main info page gave opinions on why the proposal was good yet didn't give such opinions for those voting against a list of arguments for both sides should be clearly indicated before the vote starts. Translations of the page were available in only a few languages (of the 200 wikipedia languages) and many of those which were translated weren't done so before the vote started - don't start ANY vote until the translations are done for the languages which represent 80% of wikipedia edits. No indication was given as to how this "vote" would be decided - some people even claimed that it wasn't a vote at all. There was no link to the person who could be said to be responsible for the vote so that questions could be quickly answered. Some users were proposing changes to the GlobOp policy WHILE the vote was in progress. Even now the vote has ended the above paragraph indicates that it's not even clear if the proposal has failed or not. This whole process is pretty laughable.--Xania 00:42, 26 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
  • Xania, it should be clear - if you read my Recommendations section below and my previous comments on this page - that I've identified plenty of flaws in this process. But I do not want to indulge in polemics.
  • Regarding SUL notifications, I have been very mindful that many people are not around every day: Most (72 out of 75) were given at least two weeks to respond; and 2 of the remaining 3 did respond within the checking period. I've made no secret of the fact that I'm unhappy with contacting people after the event, but have tried to make the best of a messy set of circumstances. If you feel that longer is necessary, feel free to propose it.
  • Finally, if my summation of the outcome sounds 'wishy-washy', do bear in mind that I have no official remit and that we are now obliged to hold a non-partisan review:
...a non-partisan review will be undertaken and the results enacted.
I would expect that review to consider the question of whether the entire vote process was valid as well as the outcome. Until that is done we remain in limbo. --(RT) 19:27, 26 February 2010 (UTC)Reply


Apart from considering the future of the Global Sysops proposal, it would be worth considering how future vote procedures could be better managed to avoid some of the problems encountered here. I would recommend that:

  1. Prior to any vote instructions and eligibility criteria are checked thoroughly to ensure they are complete and accurate.
  2. All instructions should all be translated into relevant languages before voting commences. If a standard set (or sets) of instructions could be developed, translations could be utilised with only minor modifications on different occasions.
  3. If an an edit notice is to be used (which is desirable), it should be set up before the start of the vote process. Its wording should closely reflect the requirements stated elsewhere.
  4. In a straight vote, how the outcome is to determined should be stated clearly from the beginning, including the percentage required for a proposal to pass.
  5. A fixed date, clearly stated, should be used to determine any qualification period.
  6. Also, if it is deemed necessary for a voter to have a certain number of edits, it should be linked to a fixed date. This would avoid users artificially inflating their number of edits during a vote period.
  7. Where eligibilty is based on other wiki projects, unified logins or alternative links should be included in the instructions. However, for certain users, it may be difficult to fully unify their login, so the alternative link method should be offered.
  8. Care should be taken to ensure any automated 'vote checker' exactly matches the written eligibility criteria. This should be thoroughly tested prior to the vote.
  9. Also, if automatic voting in some form is to be considered, similar rigorous testing should be conducted to ensure operation matches the stated rules. Processes should be designed to facilitate open, independent checking.
  10. Where a 'straight vote' is intended, votes and discussion should be completely separated into different sections. This would avoid some of the confusion regarding where votes should be placed - and reduce the possibility of voter intimidation.
  11. Consideration should be given to ways of placing the For and Against sections side-by-side rather than one underneath the other. This would help to reduce any perceived bias.
  12. If amendments are tabled, consideration should be given to placing them on separate sub-pages. (I am fairly certain that some votes were placed in the wrong lists during this vote; there even appears to be 3 stray votes in the middle of the Discussion section). Using sub-pages would also reduce traffic and possible page size problems.
  13. Consideration should be given to designating certain users as election monitors, especially during a large voting process. Apart from ensuring the smooth management of the vote page, such monitors would ideally remain neutral in the debate itself to ensure the confidence of all parties.

--(RT) 00:15, 22 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

An excellent set of recommendations. I particularly like the idea of a "standardized" voting process which can be pretranslated into many languages. (properly done, it could even be templatized so you just substitute in the dates, percentages, qualification numbers and the like that might vary from one election to the next, or failing that, comments within the text could show what things are what). Right now it seems we start from square one every time. Which is why you'll often see me stumping for "this election should be run exactly like ____ "(the last board election, the last election of this sort, etc) ++Lar: t/c 15:18, 22 February 2010 (UTC)Reply
Indeed. It would also do away with the "run-for-translators-by-deadline"-stunt. Seb az86556 21:24, 22 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

Managerial abuse?[edit]

My vote has been deleted. This is awfuly undemocratical, who did this? User:CRNOGORSKI PATRIOTA - VOTE MONTENEGRIN! User:CroForge 22:28, 23 February 2010

Please read the information at the top of the Global Sysops Vote page. The last date for voting was January 31. --(RT) 23:28, 23 February 2010 (UTC)Reply

"This proposal passes, but without the "Global blocks" related rights"[edit]

What a complete load of s**t. Seriously. In what way does this proposal pass when it was said that 80% was required to pass yet only 76% was achieved? Maybe next time someone tries to change the US constitution yet only 60% approve then they should just apply it anyway because it's a little close to the required 66.6% required? And maybe, as a compromise, they should remove the last two lines of the bill because that would satisfy everybody? It was said that a "non-partisan" review would take place after the vote yet this was clearly just decided by a random Meta sysop or crat. This entire vote - the original discussions, the vote itself and the aftermath - is wrong.--Xania 23:31, 1 March 2010 (UTC)Reply

I have yet to see anything that said an 80% margin was needed. Most proposals in my memory only needed above 60%. 80% is needed for someone to become a Steward, and that is the -highest- threshold in any vote. Ottava Rima 23:54, 1 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
I found a discussion making the claim, but only a tiny handful of people responded. Definitely not any way to form a consensus on the threshold needed, especially when it goes against the traditional consensus determination threshold. To base anything off a need of 80% is to make a claim that "I said something in an isolated and ignored talk page before anyone paid attention and now it must be true". That is not how consensus works nor would it be appropriate for processes. Ottava Rima 23:58, 1 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
Yeah right. 80% is pretty much the standard on meta and other projects for 'big' votes. After the 80% thing was raised during the vote nobody stepped in to say that it was wrong. Plus if it's not 80% that's required why did the person making the decision make the concession about global blocking?? You don't seem to understand consensus either? It doesn't consist of merely lobbing a little off the proposal after the vote has ended and then thinking that we'll buy it.--Xania 00:11, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
I've seen policies and proposals pass at projects like Wikipedia with only 65% needed. I have looked through meta for quite a while and I can find nothing to back you up. But you do like to toss around words like "crap", which suggests that your response is more emotional than factual. Ottava Rima 00:18, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
Of course there are other places where different thresholds are built in to the rules - but in this case the discussion beforehand, during and after all point to a required 80% (as per the Meta norm). There was also an absolutely clear undertaking to have a non-partisan review which this clearly is not. Plus, if we are interested in building a real consensus, consultation on any compromise should be sought and then put to a fresh vote (or something similar) to establish it's legitimacy. --(RT) 01:14, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
'Crap' was used as it best described this entire process. Whatever has happened it now appears that the proposal is being rewritten and that certainly wasn't what people voted on. If, as you guys have said, the vote passed with enough votes were concessions made and part of the proposal removed? Any changes to a proposal must be voted on and that means we have to go through this whole charade again unfortunately. Of course the most appropriate way forward would be an Arbitration Committee, wouldn't it? Because they always reach a fair decision!--Xania 01:31, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
A simple search for "80%" on meta produces no hits stating that there is a standard recommending it. Searching on other wikis also fails to produce hits. I think that we can state confidently that there is no such standard as an 80% mark for proposals to pass. RT, Xania, all I can see is that you did not get your way when it was clear that almost 1000 people more wanted the proposal to pass. It is rather strange to state that two people's opinion is more important than 1,000. Ottava Rima 02:12, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
No, one or two people's views are never more important than anyone else - whether mine or the 'crat who called the result. (And for the record I am not entirely against Global Sysops; I just seek to implement the process put in place by others). On the 80% for this vote see below; on a Meta norm, I am simply citing what others have stated which may only apply to certain situations. --(RT) 02:37, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
I am strongly against the global sysops proposal, mainly because I think it will damage the growth process of small wikis, but I think that considering it passed without the "Global blocks" related rights is the correct decision. From what I've seen, there is no evidence of 80% being Meta's norm. Putting this to a new vote really isn't an option; Wikimedia-wide votes take up a ridiculous amount of time and effort and should only be used under specific circumstances, and having two for one proposal is entirely out of the question. There seems to be consensus on two things: 1, global sysops are a good idea, 2, they shouldn't have access to global blocks.
The vote page says "This proposal passes, but without the "Global blocks" related rights." I take it that means this has already been implemented? --Yair rand 01:41, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
Requests for Global Sysops rights have begun, so it looks like implementation is under way at least.
I do understand your position - but please bear in mind the discussion about this vote where 80% was proposed and accepted, if informally, in advance (see here as I have previously reminded people on this page). Also, whilst we know plenty of users wanted Global Sysops and did not want global blocks, how do we know their removal alone would be enough to gain the extra margin of support? You have cited a different reason for opposing the plan and there are others. Plus I am not adverse to looking at alternative ways of seeking legitimation of a compromise (eg individual votes all on participating projects) but it shouldn't just come down to the interpretation of one or two partisan people. --(RT) 02:22, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
"where 80% was proposed and accepted" As pointed out above, 1. the thread has only a small handful with it not being the Steward community or the community as a whole participating, 2. the percentage was not placed anywhere else, and 3. it has no reference as being official anywhere nor has a precedent to even justify it. Ottava Rima 02:28, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
Of course the percentage should have been accepted formally and published on the vote page. Most of this fuss is because that was not done. But no alternative threshold was ever suggested. --(RT) 02:44, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
An alternative threshold wouldn't need to be put forth to be honest. Consensus is what the main agreement is, and there was almost a 1,000 statement majority. That is a really big demand with many of those people active on smaller projects. The position is there to help the stewards. Right now, without global blocks, there is very little damage that could be done. It is effectively a temporary sysop on a smaller wiki without all the hassle of doing so. These people are active as rollbackers on those same projects and will now only be handling the vandalism deletions that they normally force Stewards to do (thus, taking away from more important issues). If it was even 55% support it would seem more than enough to warrant it, as these individuals would have to be elected -anyway- and individual projects can opt out. Ottava Rima 02:52, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
  • Had it been stated at the outset that the threshold was somewhat lower (or there was none at all), that would have been clear; but we can't ignore the fact the 80% was the only benchmark put forward (and stated publicly here by at least 8 January, see above). Even the 'crat calling the vote seems to have accepted it did not pass in its original form, hence (presumably) the reason for putting forward a compromise.
  • I'm sure you are right that less damage can be done by Global Sysops in this amended form, but that's not the point. (Personally, I am not unwilling to support an amended version but it needs to be put forward to be properly legitimised). However I do worry about the damage the amateurish handling of this whole process does to Meta and wikis (hence my Recommendations after the checking was over).
  • Also, I accept a large number of people wanted something of this kind, so some action is required - just do it right: do a proper non-partisan review, build a broader consensus and get any compromise legitimised. --(RT) 03:59, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
  • "I do worry about the damage the amateurish handling of this whole process" I am offended by that statement since you do not take an active participation in meta and its processes. There are many different processes here and they always need more activity, and if you were involved in them then I could understanding you 1. claiming anything about this vs other processes and 2. how these processes are normally decided. I have spent a lot of time organizing the archive and closing of two of these processes (translations and closing projects) and I do not see anything from my experience matching up to what you claim. Ottava Rima 14:45, 3 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
I am not seeking to cause offence - and I am not seeking to compare this vote with any others you have been involved in. What I can observe from this vote is that the original instructions were incomplete, translations were not in place beforehand, etc which looks pretty amateurish to me. With regards to how the vote was closed I am not the only one who thinks a fresh vote is required to legitimise passing a compromise proposal here. As to my involvement with Meta, I have been involved with this process for the best part of a couple of months (expending a fair amount of time during the checking process) - how welcome my wider involvement would be is an interesting question. --(RT) 18:50, 3 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
I fully agree that this vote was poorly implemented and not well thought-out. I don't think anybody's doubting that. However, what's done is done and I shudder to think about spending another three months planning, voting, and debating the whole thing once again. –Juliancolton | Talk 19:07, 3 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
We also need more people to participate! Translation of the week/Translation candidates needs as many voters as possible. Go, sign up, have some fun. :) Ottava Rima (talk) 20:51, 3 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
  • This is a farce. To pass a modification of a rejected proposal without another vote is overtly unethical. And it wasn't a small margin, either – 3% of >3,000 voters is significant. Those who claim the proposal wasn't rejected – that the vote didn't fail – need to consider two important things: (1) Votes definitionally have a pass margin, and (2) 80% is the only pass margin that was ever mentioned. In accordance with (1) and (2), it should be very clear to any fair-minded individual that the decision is not right. —Anonymous DissidentTalk 05:07, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
As far as I know the 80% margin was the only one mentioned, that's different from being accepted by everyone (yes, I know that there were no protests back then, but on the other hand there weren't many voices altogether). Next time, we'll have to discuss these matters in advance more extensively. For now, we have to do something with the results. Just ignoring 76.9% and not introducing Global sysops is not a good thing to do, as is introducing Global sysops while ignoring (serious) concerns. It's a difficult situation, but I think the best alternative of bad choices we have it to try to reach a compromise. As global block permissions have been been one of the main reason for opposing the proposal, we can assume that a noticeable amount of users would have voted for the proposal if it didn't include global blocks. The theoretical best way of verifying that would be to start another vote, but as others have already pointed out that'd be a huge effort and is not a feasible option. I agree that the current solution is bad, I just think all other options we have are worse. --Church of emacs talk · contrib 13:26, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
Yes, 'next time' better discussion should take place in advance (and the process should be properly stated). Yes, we cannot ignore the support. Yes, putting a compromise solution forward makes sense. But how can it be reasonable or fair to put the compromise through without seeking to verify that support? Your objection to a fresh vote seems to rest on it being not a feasible option - I agree it would require time and organisation, but I cannot see that makes it infeasible or undesirable. And even if a fresh vote was not organised on similar lines, there are other ways of seeking broad, fresh support for a compromise from the affected wikis. Are such solutions really worse than this? --(RT) 15:08, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
You mean a vote with fewer participants? I doubt that we can reproduce the broadness of the original vote. Only the users active on meta (or whichever wikis we contact) will vote and that's not nearly as representative. In addition to the huge amount of work for a new vote, I think there'd be many rejections due to the procedure of voting twice over an almost similar proposal (some people might misinterpret this as "voting until the result is 'right'"). --Church of emacs talk · contrib 17:30, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
How do you define broad? Perhaps you mean lots of people from the big wikis? According to the history of Template:Translation/Global_sysops, which isn't necessarily accurate, there were only 11 translations published when the vote started[3] and 22 translations by the end of the vote. Compare that with over 60 translations of the steward election introduction before the election commenced[4] and one more added afterwards. In the weeks that followed, I visited all of the wikisources in the wikiset, and more often than not the site notice was not visible or was not in the native language. John Vandenberg 02:55, 4 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
Farce is the only word to describe it. Well OK 'crap' is suitable too. 80% was not just mentioned on this talk page during the vote but also in discussions beforehand. Asking people to "vote until the result is 'right" is at least better than 'asking people to vote and then ignoring them'. Another vote is needed but next time do it right.--Xania 22:56, 2 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
This vote explains and shows to us all that they can do anything, anytime. Game Over. --すけ 20:35, 7 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
Uh, who's "they"? --Yair rand 22:14, 7 March 2010 (UTC)Reply
  • It does seem silly to pass it when it doesn't reach the required number, however it was not fully passed, so at least it's not as bad. Perhaps this was a concession to acknowledge that there was majority approval even if it was not an adequate amount of it? I am a little confused though, DarkoNeko's note at the top mentions which abilities are omitted but there's no revised not as to what rights these Global sysops DO end up getting, nor how we elect or impeach them. Ty 00:50, 16 April 2010 (UTC)Reply

Multiple unclosed formatting tags[edit]

There are seven unclosed formatting tags ([5], [6], [7], [8], [9], [10] and [11].) Can anyone fix it? Thanks, —Sgd. Hasley 15:59, 7 October 2019 (UTC)Reply

I have fixed a couple that affect strikethrough, though others may not be that important. Rather than plug in the lint errors, it may be better to point to the specific Special:LintErrors page. Thanks.  — billinghurst sDrewth 21:06, 7 October 2019 (UTC)Reply
If you have additional changes needed, please specify the exact change you would like too see in the form of "change X to Y". — xaosflux Talk 14:47, 9 October 2019 (UTC)Reply