WpCyberstalking

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A professional wpstalker at work.

WpCyberstalking (http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking (oops balleted; this is what it looked like in 2007), aka secret mailing list) is a Wiki[medi]a Mailman mailing list created by wikipedants to discuss the grave problem of TOW's outgroup googling (en-x-tow: "stalking") assjack, demokratefan1, Scheißjüdin & Co. All traces of this mailing list are lost, and any archives are gone. Unless SlimVirgin or Durova saved copies, and they'll never reveal anything. Because Bitches and whores.

Prelude to the drama

In November 2007, wikipedant Lice Brewer attended an Internet-utopian seminar in Jew York to represent TOW. She was interviewed on video by a guy who later published said video on JewTube. On the video, Lice Brewer complained about imagined threats to TOW coming from the outside. Lice Brewer's petty, disgruntled demeanor on the video was then made fun of by The Wikipedia Review. Given her pettiness, reductionism and perfectionism instead of optimality, which is also typical of Wikimediots in general, The Wikipedia Review's sarcasm got under her skin. Around the same period of time, The Wikipedia Review's poster Jon Awbrey was flooding TOW with sockpuppets, so this fueled Lice Brewer's imagination about sockpuppets coming from The Wikipedia Review.

Amongst the cunty-bunts who frequently appeared on the list: SlimVirgin, Slim's whore Crum375, JzG, Jehochman, Gary Weiss (under various socks), Jayjg, Wikimedia Director Sue Gardner, and even Jimbo His butt-Godly Self. But don't call them a "cabal"! Because they're actually just a bunch of lusers who fight amongst themselves all the time.

Banning of Bang-Bang

Following her motif of imagined outside threats to TOW, Lice Brewer imagined that Bang-Bang (!!), a contributor to the did-you-know section of TOW's home page, was an intruder coming to TOW from The Wikipedia Review, so Lice Brewer proceeded to ban Bang-Bang without prior discussion. So she then explained her banning of Bang-Bang on an e-mail message to a fellow TOW administrator, but on that e-mail message she also mentioned the WpCyberstalking mailing list, which at the time was relatively hidden (not really secret) from TOW's outgroup. The recipient of the e-mail message then copied and pasted the e-mail message onto a TOW page, and The Wikipedia Review got wind of WpCyberstalking, so then the whole drama unfolded.

The Register stirring the TOW pot once again

Thereafter, this whole drama about Lice Brewer and WpCyberstalking was mentioned by Andrew Orlowski's Register colleague Cade Metz on a typical Register anti-TOW piece. This Metz piece was then discussed on a Slashdot thread. Since Slashdot users are big ass-kissers of TOW, they detest Orlowskian anti-Wikipedia criticism, and so they started yet another lenghty discussion on the topic. This news then made it to Irish computing news Web site siliconrepublic.com and to several blogs. As is typical of the TOW mailing list, anti-lulzy discussions ensued over there also.

GOOG bottom line

This all comes at the time of TOW's late-year 2007 fundraiser for the benefit of the child in Africa (CIA), when the fundraiser is falling short of TOW's and Madame Wikiwiki's supposed expectations:

CIA-GOOG-TOW algorithm:

  1. Start a fundraiser for the child in Africa (CIA).
  2. Set up a blog to make it clear you emphasized the CIA fundraiser to the outgroup.
  3. Let the Lice Brewer scandal undermine the CIA fundraiser.
  4. Watch how the CIA fundraiser falls short of Madame Wikiwiki's expectations.
  5. Use the shortcoming of the CIA fundraiser as a pretext to embed Google AdSense in TOW's pages.
  6. ????
  7. Profit!

Some real captures

This was from shortly before the list was closed down, thanks to "negative media attention".


From: jayjg <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Hi all - quick intro
Date: October 16, 2007 7:26:03 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/12/07, Alison Cassidy <[email protected]: wrote:
Hi all,
I just joined the list here yesterday (thanks, SlimVirgin!). I'm
User:Alison and I'm just another admin from English Wikipedia.
I've been involved in helping others over the last while in cases of
harassment and stalking on-wiki but recently had an episode of my
own. A banned editor became far too interested in me personally and
started a campaign against me, both on and off wikipedia.
Anyway - glad to be here!
-- Allie
Welcome!
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: K P <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 13, 2007 3:21:36 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/13/07, Sami Harris <[email protected]: wrote:
You are certainly right about Gavin De Becker. That would be a coup.
I think that the group, no matter what its composition, is going to be a
target. Its composition, its selection, all are going to be disliked by the
handful of vocal types who object in kneejerk fashion to assisting victims
of stalking. By definition, including victims of stalking will inflame the
stalkers.
Naming Slim would be a signal that there is a change in attitude and will be
a major blow against the problem, in my view.
Or you can draft Al Gore.
I don't know if Slim is interested, but I think it would be too
problematic. These people will appear no matter what, but the
campaign against Slim Virgin has been vicious and, as I said before,
very successful in bringing together the idiots against her. Giving
them an open invitation to act as a group against the proposal will
sink it before it starts.
It's going to be hard enough to change anything on Wikipedia as it is,
without us starting with such an outrageous proposal: change basic
human behavioiur and demand that we interact with civility. But to
make it more than that to begin with is putting it for failure before
it starts. It has to focus, imo, on this one thing: gaining a civil
basis for discourse among all who participates on Wikipedia. Dealing
with stalkers and with what is still happening to Slim Virgin are
outside of the immediate scope of this proposal. I think it's best
chance of success is to start small and focused on one huge problem
which is making Wikipedia miserable for everyone and ultimately makes
what is happening to Slim Virgin possible: and underlying lack of
civility.
Let's go as small as possible, imo, when starting this big, and stay
focused on this one prize right now, rather than making it more.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: Sami Harris <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 13, 2007 2:38:49 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
You are certainly right about Gavin De Becker. That would be a coup.
I think that the group, no matter what its composition, is going to be a target. Its composition, its selection, all are going to be disliked by the handful of vocal types who object in kneejerk fashion to assisting victims of stalking. By definition, including victims of stalking will inflame the stalkers.
Naming Slim would be a signal that there is a change in attitude and will be a major blow against the problem, in my view.
Or you can draft Al Gore.
On 10/13/07, K P <[email protected]: wrote:
On 10/13/07, Sami Harris < [email protected]: wrote:
: I disagree with you on this point. That would give veto power to stalkers
: who focus on any old crud, and who fabricate when there is no crud upon
: which to focus.
:
: It would eliminate the most obvious individual for this group, which would
: be of course Slim Virgin.
:
:
: On 10/13/07, K P < [email protected]: wrote:
: :
: : I haven't a clue how to go about picking people, but they should be
: : action oriented and probably have squeaky clean recorfds, because
: : everything on Wikipedia lately seems to degenerate into a discussion
: : of 2 1/2 year old single-instance sock puppetry accusations that prove
: : the person is absolutley reprehensible as a human being.
: :
I'm not certain I think Slim Virgin is an obvious choice for the
group. Having been stalked myself, for an extended period of time, my
ability to contribute to anything in the midst of being stalked or
soon afterwards was zero. I realize that SV is doing a better job than
I did simply by setting up and working with this discussion list right
here.
Still, because of what was done to her and is continuing to be done to
her, her presence would be a potential target to turn the working
committee into nothing but another venue for the stalkers to target.
This would be counter-productive to the maximum. It would also sink
the project from the get go for all the wrong reasons: it would be
sunk by all those we need to change the most, and there would be
plenty who join up because of the very atmosphere we're trying to
address: those who assist and aid the stalkers and their supporters
who make Wikipedia a living hell for serious editors.
I don't think we can afford to underestimate what was done to Slim
Virgin and how brutally successful it has been.
There are people who genuinely believe everything they've read about
her, who see her as the problem in this issue, who think the stalkers
are the ones who got short-shifted. Putting her on the committee
would make otherwise potentially supportive editors the enemies of the
committe, editors who are merely making Wikipedia toxic by supporting
the trolls and stalkers, are the ones we want to turn into editors who
are willing participants in a civil community. We can't turn the
trolls and the stalkers--but we can possibly take away their support
group, to the advantage of the community and the members of the
support group.
I would like someone who understands what it is like to be stalked on
the committee, though. I believe a psychologist might fit this bill.
But there might be other sorts.
Actually, I would like the Foundation to hire and consult with Gavin
de Becker for the stamp of a professional's input, should they ever
address stalking directly.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: K P <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 13, 2007 2:31:19 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/13/07, Sami Harris <[email protected]: wrote:
I disagree with you on this point. That would give veto power to stalkers
who focus on any old crud, and who fabricate when there is no crud upon
which to focus.
It would eliminate the most obvious individual for this group, which would
be of course Slim Virgin.
On 10/13/07, K P <[email protected]: wrote:
I haven't a clue how to go about picking people, but they should be
action oriented and probably have squeaky clean recorfds, because
everything on Wikipedia lately seems to degenerate into a discussion
of 2 1/2 year old single-instance sock puppetry accusations that prove
the person is absolutley reprehensible as a human being.
I'm not certain I think Slim Virgin is an obvious choice for the
group. Having been stalked myself, for an extended period of time, my
ability to contribute to anything in the midst of being stalked or
soon afterwards was zero. I realize that SV is doing a better job than
I did simply by setting up and working with this discussion list right
here.
Still, because of what was done to her and is continuing to be done to
her, her presence would be a potential target to turn the working
committee into nothing but another venue for the stalkers to target.
This would be counter-productive to the maximum. It would also sink
the project from the get go for all the wrong reasons: it would be
sunk by all those we need to change the most, and there would be
plenty who join up because of the very atmosphere we're trying to
address: those who assist and aid the stalkers and their supporters
who make Wikipedia a living hell for serious editors.
I don't think we can afford to underestimate what was done to Slim
Virgin and how brutally successful it has been.
There are people who genuinely believe everything they've read about
her, who see her as the problem in this issue, who think the stalkers
are the ones who got short-shifted. Putting her on the committee
would make otherwise potentially supportive editors the enemies of the
committe, editors who are merely making Wikipedia toxic by supporting
the trolls and stalkers, are the ones we want to turn into editors who
are willing participants in a civil community. We can't turn the
trolls and the stalkers--but we can possibly take away their support
group, to the advantage of the community and the members of the
support group.
I would like someone who understands what it is like to be stalked on
the committee, though. I believe a psychologist might fit this bill.
But there might be other sorts.
Actually, I would like the Foundation to hire and consult with Gavin
de Becker for the stamp of a professional's input, should they ever
address stalking directly.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: Sue Gardner <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 13, 2007 1:21:10 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
SlimVirgin wrote:
On 10/13/07, Sue Gardner <[email protected]: wrote:
SlimVirgin wrote:
On 10/12/07, Sue Gardner <[email protected]: wrote:
This list has been pretty constructive for the past few weeks, and I
thought had been getting close to consensus & concrete next steps. But
over the past few days, it seems to have derailed a little.
If you've been waiting for support from the office, we're willing to
give it. Let me know how we can best help. If it's support for a task
force and a few dedicated members, we'll do that.
I'm offline for a few hours now; will check back later.
Sue, thank you for offering support, and Jimbo, thank you for
supporting Crum's proposal for a committee, which I'm copying below.
All we need to do now is set it up. Sue and Jimbo, would you like to
make some nominations? Personally, I would like to see you both on it,
and Mike Godwin if he has time. I think Matt Brown would be good as
the ArbCom rep.
Sarah
Sounds good, Sarah, thanks.
I have some ideas re nominees, but it would help me to lock down first
what the group's specific mandate should or would be. Are we talking
about the development of policies to protect editors from harassment (as
per Crum), or the slightly broader mandate proposed by KP, of making WP
a more civil place in general? Or something slightly different?
And, I am assuming the group's work wouldn't focus solely or largely on
ArbCom, but might touch on it to the extent it turns out to be relevant.
Yes?
I'd like to see the committee produce proposals for a civility policy
that the Foundation can adopt as a core policy similar to NPOV.
The idea would be to promote civility and mutual respect as being
absolutely central to Wikipedia and non-negotiable -- not least
because, as others have argued, we're not going to attract more women
editors, more mature editors, more editors from different cultures if
we don't maintain a civil working environment for them. And without
those editors, we can't achieve a three-dimensional, neutral point of
view.
I agree with this basic premise.
I'm thinking that cyberstalking and harassment could be dealt with as
a subset of the problems caused by lack of civility, as could the
issue of how the ArbCom should handle them, and the extent to which
BLP applies to Wikipedians.
Sarah
This sounds good to me. Jimmy, please jump in if you have thoughts.
Re the makeup of the group: seems to me we would want to keep the core
group smallish (on the principle that small groups get work done
fastest) - say six or thereabouts. And we could include others on an
'as-needed' basis for specific expertise as required.
Here are three questions that spring to mind:
1 - Who would chair the group? We would need someone unbiased &
constructive, willing to do the work.
2 - People here have called repeatedly for support from a mental health
professional. The only one I know of in the community is Marc Riddel,
who I gather is a therapist - but maybe there are others? The question
is, is there psychological/behavioural expertise we are missing; and if
so, how do we get it.
3 - Probably most importantly: what authority would the group have? If
it's expected to influence ArbCom, then it makes sense to either ask
ArbCom to designate its own rep, or to approve the rep chosen here (Matt
Brown, or whomever). If it's expected to result in policy, then the
board should designate/approve its rep as well. Is there anyone else the
group is hoping/needing to influence?
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: K P <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 13, 2007 12:37:28 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/13/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
I know. But let's be clear about how divided people on the list are. I
have suggested in the past that there may be point to this list and others
have responded chiding me for giving up hope. The issue is this: are people
participating in this discussion because they have no confidence in
Wikipedia or its leadership and want to complain? Or are people
participating in this discussion because they have hopes for Wikipedia and
its leadership and want to make constructive (which means in good faith)
criticisms? (And it is I think essential to be able to distinguish between
a complaint meant to express resignation, frustration, or anger, versus a
constructive criticism - a criticism that could be quite strong and directed
at an individual, but in good faith with the assumption that that individual
is not a lost cause, not beyond hope).
To be clear, I think that both kinds of people are involved in this
discussion. I also think there is somthing dysfunctional about people with
two such different interests and expectations trying to participate in the
same discussion.
Steve
I'm partcipating to support Slim Virgin who invited me to the list
because I sent her an e-mail acknowledging that I had been stalked and
had gone through much of the horrors she had been through. People
have legitimate concerns about how authorities at Wikipedia handled
her stalking. I respect these concerns. But sometimes genuine
concerns are not addressed appropriately in the midst of demands they
should be and heavy criticisms for failures.
I would like people to see what happened from the point of view of the
person who was stalked. I don't think I'll be successful conveying
that image, but I want to try so that should this happen to other
users in the future, authority figures at Wikipedia, or even just one,
and for this my targets are Jimmy and ArbCom members participating,
may just pause and wiegh their actions from the human perspective with
the knowledge that the person being stalked doesn't necessarily have
any relationship with the person doing the stalking and for Wikipedia
to create a relationship between these two people is wrong, and is
also exactly what the stalker is trying to do to their victim.
I think the criticism, whether justified or not, has been so harsh
that it is blinding the critics, at times, to concessions made to do
things better in the future. This is not sufficient if you have been
first the victim of stalking, then the victim of being tied to your
stalker by others.
However making things better in the future will make the community
safer and better for all and is a worthwhile goal in and of itself.
I think Sarah is working very hard and sees the value of this last one
as a goal for this list, discussing and finding ways to simply make
the community better now for others. I appreciate this.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: SlimVirgin <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 13, 2007 12:39:47 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/12/07, Jimmy Wales <[email protected]: wrote:
"some of whose Board members are actually the ones responsible for it".
Could you please explain what you mean by that? I don't know of any
board members who are in any way complicit or soft on this issue at all.
Jimbo, it was Erik Möller who insisted that Wikipedia Review be
removed from the spam blacklist, triggering the whole debate about
whether it could be linked to, which led to the current farcical
ArbCom case.
It was Greg Maxwell, partner of board member Kat Walsh, who recently
supported Cyde's attempt to humiliate me on AN/I by giving publicity
to Bagley's latest claims.
Greg and Kat often took part -- with Kelly Martin, Cyde, and
Jdforrester -- in the ruthless trashing of good editors on IRC, to the
point where some of them stopping editing. I saw this firsthand. Kat
was a more passive player than Greg, Cyde, and Kelly, but she was a
player nonetheless.
It was you who appointed Kelly Martin to the ArbCom, even though it
was obvious that she was completely inappropriate, and should never
have been given access to checkuser. She is still being given
information about private ArbCom discussions, judging by the contents
of her blog.
It's all part of the same problem. We can't expect trolls to be civil
when we have ArbCom and Board members abusing people behind their
backs on IRC, and in some cases colluding with the stalkers and their
websites. Respect for volunteers has to start at the top, with no
exceptions.
Sarah
Rebecca wrote:
I'm increasingly of a similar mindset here. I think Wikipedia was
lucky that this issue didn't blow up publicly around the time of the
Kathy Sierra affair, and I think it's bound to come out - with a great
deal of associated bad press for the project.
Rebecca
On 10/12/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
That's exactly how I feel. There's no reason anyone should expose
themselves to abuse, stalking, defamation, and possibly violence on
behalf of a project that does nothing to help people who are targeted,
and which often makes things worse for them. I increasingly see this
as a matter of public interest. That is, I feel the public needs to be
warned about it. Money keeps pouring into the Foundation, which (at
best) does nothing to change the culture, and some of whose Board
members are actually the ones responsible for it.
Sarah
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: K P <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 12, 2007 11:19:57 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/12/07, Jimmy Wales <[email protected]: wrote:
I already agreed from the start that there is a problem, that something
needs to be done about it, and that some solutions are workable and
others are not.
Trying to position me as someone on the wrong side of the issue here is
just ridiculous.
Do you know how many problems I personally have with being stalked? Do
you know that I am having the police in Chicago track a guy down to make
sure he does not come to my talk next Wednesday?
--Jimbo
Celebrity stalking is different, because there is the cultural
complicity in it that is not of the same nature of the cultural
complicity in stalking non-celebs.. This doesn't mean it is any
fairer to you to be stalked, or to Jody Foster to be forever linked to
what's his face through no action of her own.
Also, the police are likely to listen to you. There have been enough
cases and studies on famous celebrity stalkers that the belief that
you are dealing with a psychopath is fairly credible. Slim Virgin
didn't have that luxury, people keep thinking there is or has to be
some relationship, recipicrol between Slim and her stalker. With you,
it's assumed from the get go, the correct relationship between stalker
and victim--stalker knows nothing really and has no relationship with
you the victim. This is a huge advantage to you in the public
perception of the relqationship. The bulk of the pople are going to
give you all of the benefits of the doubt: this weirdo invented a
relationship with you.
No one gave Slim that beneift of the doubt--she wasn't allowed to NOT
have a realatioship with her stalker.
And they're not going to tell you, what's the matter with him, he
seems like a nice guy, why don't you just go out with him once, then
walk out in the hallway, pat your stalker on the back, and say,
"Women, you cna't live with 'em, you can't live without 'em" And
assure him they'll take care of the hysterics for him.
I do have symnpathy for you because I think our cultural obsession
with celebrity is absurd and costly, not just for the celebrity,
either. But is is fundamentally different being targetted for an
obsession because you're famous than being targetted for one because
someone has fixated on you when they don't even know you.
The possiblity that Slim was complicit in being stalked will never be
off the table for a large number of people dealing with her. This is
generally not even put on the table with celebrity stalkers.
It is, to me, outrageous that someone can be made complicit in being
stalked simply because people find the credbility of the salker (who,
after all is working to gain crediblity) greater than that of the
victim (who has the disadvantage of always being put on the
defensive).
Slim's stalker should not get to define who she is--but that is
exactly what happened to her on Wikipedia. He defined who she was,
then took everything she really was away from her. And, according to
WR, he defined her as someone who failed to mourn properly, yet people
rallied to his side. Good God.
Celebrity stalkers are seen in the correct light: a weirdo who doesn't
know jack shit about the person he's stalking, other than the gossip
he/she read about in the press. When I read your comment, my first
thought was to wonder how many of these idiots you have to deal with,
not, I wonder how much of what he's saying about Slim is true.
Wikipedia let Slim's stalkers define her. Or so it seems to me. Only
Hinkley thinks he defines Jodie Foster.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: steven rubenstein <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 12, 2007 8:45:37 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Jimbo, here I think Sarah hits the nail on the head. I am concerned that given the sensitive nature of this discussion (I mean the whole cyberstalking discussion) it is too easy for someone, anyone, to take a comment personally. Let's face it: this discussion is going to produce criticisms of actions or inactions by Jimbo and ArbCom. In fact, if it does not, there is no point to this discussion (because for me the only point tot his discussion is whether we can learn from past mistakes, and learning from past mistakes means identifying past mistakes). But a criticism is not a personal attack, and a criticism does not signify a complee lack of sympathy for your (in this context Jimbo but of course I man anyone) own position.
Jimbo, I can't even begin to comprehend the amount of work you have put into wikipedia or what price you have paid for it (metaphorically, not just literally). If you felt that as editors we in systematic ways have been doing things on Wikipedia that are damaging to the project as a whole (including your involvement in and commitment to it), by all means we can discuss your own grievances.
But I think we go seriously off-track if this discussion hinges just on comparing who has the most grievances or who has suffered or sacrificed the most.
The issue is, what mistakes have been made that can be corrected. I think Sarah is bending over backwards to describe those mistakes, not because she wants to attack you personally or because she does not appreciate the risks you have taken, but simply because she wants Wikipedia to be better, and that means making it a better working environment for all editors, and an institution more supportive of its best editors.
You have expressed your willingness to confront mistakes and to discuss them. Maybe it is wrong for someone to suggest you do not understand how bad a thing stalking is - because that gets us off-track. Sarah expressed her frustration with an apparent lack of progress on this issue (a feeling of frustration I share). I really do understand why you would interpret that or other comments people have made as signs of a lack of good faith. But I have read Sarah's comment here carefully and I am convinced that she is writing in good faith, that she is trying in earnest to explain her position to you in the spirit of constructive critcism - to call your attention to specifics of a problem you have not fully addressed, at least ot here, and to explain to you why she thinks these ae serious problems at Wikipedia. This to me is th whole point of this discussion.
Look, we can bitch about cyberstalkers and real stalkers. I think we all agree that the enemy is Bagley and Brandt. But we cannot change them.
We CAN change Wikipedia. Constructive criticism, meaning, criticisms that will lead to positive change, by definition have to be criticisms of us, of Wikipedia, of ArbCom, of the Foundation, of you. The risk is that some criticisms may be unfair or unconstructive. But suely you recognize that some criticisms will be constructive. Sarah is pinpointing a pattern that can be changed. And I am convinced that she believes that changing this pattern will lead to a better Wikipedia, i.e. benefit the project to which you are committed. That's why I think it is a constructive criticism and deserves a thorough and thoughtful and non-defensive response. Others have noted that recently some of this discussion has gotten off-track and this may include comments to you that are unconstructive. Okay, please just shrug them off. Let's focus on the comments that are constructive. Like this one.
Steve
----- Original Message ----
From: SlimVirgin <[email protected]:
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Sent: Friday, October 12, 2007 6:32:58 PM
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
On 10/12/07, Jimmy Wales <[email protected]: wrote:
 : I already agreed from the start that there is a problem, that something
 : needs to be done about it, and that some solutions are workable and
 : others are not.
 :
 : Trying to position me as someone on the wrong side of the issue here is
 : just ridiculous.
It's not ridiculous at all. Many good editors see you as either
inadvertently faciliating the stalking, or at best turning your face
away. We've been having this discussion since August, and so far there
has been no support from you for any of the concrete suggestions
people have made.
 :
 : Do you know how many problems I personally have with being stalked? Do
 : you know that I am having the police in Chicago track a guy down to make
 : sure he does not come to my talk next Wednesday?
But you've never experienced a situation where the ArbCom engages with
and encourages your stalkers, or where people insist on having public
discussions about whatever your stalkers are saying about you, or
proposing to do to you.
You've never had a board member ask you to "come clean" because the
stalker appears to have you "dead to rights" this time.
You've never had any of Wikipedia's institutions decide they have the
right to decide how your stalkers ought to be handled, even if you
feel their approach is placing you and your family in danger.
You've never had any of your stalkers unblocked because they "asked
nicely." You've not been told off for failing to assume good faith of
them.
Those are the issues we're discussing here. The only reason you've not
experienced any of the above is that lots of people are sycophantic
toward you. Try to imagine what your wiki experience would be like
without that sycophancy; without the money to move house whenever you
need to for security reasons; and without the support of the
Foundation, and its lawyer and advisors.
As we've said many times, there's nothing we can do to stop stalking
once it's started. All we can do is improve our response to it so that
we don't make things worse for the victim. We can also provide a more
civil and supportive atmosphere to work in so there's less of the
rampant trolling, aggression, and sexism that triggers or furthers the
harassment.
So far you've rejected all our suggestions and haven't made any of
your own. And no one from the Foundation has responded for weeks.
You can therefore hardly blame people for thinking you're waiting for
a tragedy or a public embarrassment before you act.
Sarah
 :
 : Sami Harris wrote:
 : : Perhaps you can prove Slim wrong (in her point that you are
 : : unpersuadable) by describing how your perceptions have changed, and how
 : : you have been persuaded, by what you have read on this list. Specificity
 : : would be helpful.
 : :
 : : On 10/12/07, *Jimmy Wales* <[email protected] <mailto:[email protected]::
 : : wrote:
 : :
 : : SlimVirgin wrote:
 : : : Another editor made that point to me recently -- that we're wasting
 : : : our time trying to persuade Jimbo that change is needed, because the
 : : : only thing that will cause an institution to change is a
 : : disaster. In
 : : : other words it seems we have to wait until someone gets seriously
 : : : hurt.
 : :
 : : ???
 : :
 : : That's just ridiculous.
 : :
 : : --Jimbo
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Begin forwarded message:

From: Dakota Kahn <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Hi all - quick intro
Date: October 12, 2007 5:34:06 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Welcome Allie :)
Dakota
On 10/12/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
A big welcome from me too, Allie.
Sarah
On 10/12/07, Sarah Ewart <[email protected]: wrote:
: Hi Allie,
:
: Welcome to the Wp and Cyberstalking mailing list. I'm very glad to see
: you've joined up.
:
: Cheers,
:
: Sarah
:
: ----- Original Message -----
: From: "Alison Cassidy" <[email protected]:
: To: "Wikipedia and cyberstalking" <[email protected]:
: Sent: Saturday, October 13, 2007 2:07 AM
: Subject: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Hi all - quick intro
:
:
: : Hi all,
: :
: : I just joined the list here yesterday (thanks, SlimVirgin!). I'm
: : User:Alison and I'm just another admin from English Wikipedia.
: : I've been involved in helping others over the last while in cases of
: : harassment and stalking on-wiki but recently had an episode of my
: : own. A banned editor became far too interested in me personally and
: : started a campaign against me, both on and off wikipedia.
: :
: : Anyway - glad to be here!
: :
: : -- Allie
: : _______________________________________________
: : WpCyberstalking mailing list
: : [email protected]
: : http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
:
: _______________________________________________
: WpCyberstalking mailing list
: [email protected]
: http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
:
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Begin forwarded message:

From: [email protected]
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 12, 2007 1:57:41 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
In reply to at least two, justly rather testy, comments from Jimbo:
I for one don't sense any lack of willingness to tackle the issue,
only a genuine problem understanding what can actually, practically,
be done. I'm right with you on that.
But I have an idea.
I am also about to violate the rules stated at the top of the admin
noticeboards. This is long. Very long. Sorry. For the executive
summary, scroll to the end.
.
Right now there is an arbitration case in voting which addresses the
issue of attack sites. It is tap-dancing around the issue of
Wikipedia Review, largely because Dan Tobias (who is a regular at
Wikipedia Review) and a few other editors, also active there, are
lobbying incredibly hard *not* to have a ban on that site.
Consider: we have policies on neutrality, verifiability and reliable
sources. WR fails all of these. Not by a small margin, it is
simply inconceivable that it could be fixed from its current status,
not least because the people with the worst records - Judd Bagley,
for example - are given the most kudos there.
We have seen what Bagley is capable of, and he is still at it. He
considers that banning links to antisocialmedia is an abuse. He is
- as I think we all, including the arbitrators agree - absolutely
wrong about that. The arbitration case looks set to ban links to
ASM, then, but they are stopping short of addressing the *number one
problem site*, the one with the longest, most consistent and most
persistent history of outing, attacking, inflating baseless attacks,
giving aid and succour to justly-banned trolls and generally doing
its damndest to undermine Wikipedia's good faith efforts to remain
free of the kind of people that make so many other forums worthless.
An example: for my heinous abuse - supporting the idea that linking
to ASM is not acceptable on Wikipedia - Judd Bagley is, through the
medium of Wikipedia Review, harassing me. And if that were brought
to WP, what would be the benefit, exactly?
By linking to WR, we are facilitating the campaign that got Bagley
banned, the campaign to pick off, one by one, those prepared to
stand up to him. And that's just the current example.
To my mind allowing linking to Wikipedia Review, specifically, above
almost any other site, is utterly inimical to the attempt to create
an environment where disparate views can coexist to create, by wary
negotiation, a neutral encyclopaedia.
Working on a content dispute in which WR is interested is like
trying to negotiate between Israel and Palestine with the added
assistance of a baying and partisan mob outside shouting that you
are biased, evil, abusive and not fit to take any part in the
negotiations.
WR has moved from what I think Fred in particular remembers it as
being, a forum where a justly incensed Daniel Brandt discussed his
problems with the unruly adolescent that is Wikipedia on a bad day,
and has migrated into being the place where those who are unwilling
and unable to comply with Wikipedia policy meet, reinforce each
other's prejudices, and rail against the unfairness of it all.
It is, in point of fact, quite hard for someone who is active in
editing actual content, to get banned. Yes, single-issue obsessives
get booted pretty rapidly, but the process of arbitration and
banning requires a very great deal of collective soul-searching with
a very strong presumption that you should be allowed to edit. A
community ban is overturned if a *single* admin is prepared to
unblock. An ArbCom ban is for a maximum of one year, and that is
less likely than an editing restriction if the editor is a genuinely
productive one outside of one or two hot button topics. We are
incredibly tolerant of oddballs.
And even if they are banned, it's not as if we don't allow them to
have their say, is it? If WordBomb, JB196, Jon Awbrey, Gregory Kohs
and the like genuinely wish to influence Wikipedia policy, they are
free to use the WikiEN-l mailing list, the officially supported
forum for such things.
As it turns out, though, those who have tried to contribute to that
medium subsequent to being banned from Wikipedia, have generally
ended up being banned from there as well. This is very important,
because the threshold for being kicked form WikiEN-l is incredibly
high. You really have to do your damndest to get kicked from there.
Because while we are very happy to go to great lengths to allow
people sincerely committed to the project to make a go of
contributing their knowledge, we have rather less patience with
relentless self-promotion. Which is, in the end, what most of these
people, including Bagley, were banned for.
Guess where they go next?
We don't let them post indefinitely to WikiEN-l, which is the
officially supported place for meta-debate which is too complex or
heated for Wikipedia. Why on earth would we let people link to
their virtually unmoderated diatribes on an external forum?
What is the benefit to Wikipedia of allowing these links?
I can see the *dis*benefit, very clearly, it's shouting loud and
clear, but what exactly, in Jimbo's or the Foundation's or the
arbitration committee's view, do we gain by allowing people to link
to Wikipedia Review, specifically? Seems to me, if we don't have at
least one really really strong positive answer to that, then we
should simply blacklist the site. The only answer I've seen thus
far is "freedom of speech", which is one of the things Wikipedia
specifically does *not* endorse as part of the editing process, for
excellent reasons. Without a policy specifically mandating that
Wikipedia is *not* a free speech zone, the project would have
disintegrated long ago. Not being a free speech zone, placing
clearly defined limits on what constitutes acceptable behaviour, is
one of Wikipedia's most important success factors. But we appear to
be abandoning that, moving towards a situation where you can be
censured for using invective but officially endorsed when you post
links to a site which does nothing but attack and undermine people.
Because, you know, buried in there, among the tons of sour grapes
from disgruntled banned self-promoters and POV-pushers, there might
one day be a grain of valid criticism. One day. Perhaps.
I have spent quite a bit of time looking round Wikipedia Review. The
arbitration case speaks about not suppressing legitimate criticism,
and not getting too upset by baseless criticism. I think that
should change. Wikipedia Review contains criticism which baseless,
criticism which is vile and hurtful, criticism which violates
privacy, and some instances of criticism which is valid, but is also
available from much better sources.
No. Thanks all the same, but no.
The gorilla in the room, Wikipedia Review, is being studiously
ignored, and that really does need to stop, and *that* needs to be
guided from the top.
Right now we're sending the message that you can engage in a little
bit of harassment and it's OK. But you can't be a little bit
pregnant. Tobias gleefully exploited the absurdity of some
well-intentioned people misidentifying Michael Moore and Don
Murphy's websites as attack sites; we don't need to legislate that,
we have a long-standing policy of not legislating Clue. Is there
anybody here who would have an difficulty whatsoever in discerning
the essential difference between Wikipedia Review and
michaelmoore.com? Of course not. It's absurd. We know what an
attack site is: it's a site which systematically engages in
harassment and attacks. Do we need to define systematically to
eight decimal places? Of course not.
All this is, in fact, already supported by strong and long-standing
consensus. It is time to restate that in absolutely unequivocal
terms, because right now we appear to have lost the plot.
The executive summary, then:
As a hierarchy, Wikipedia is for civil, content-focused debate;
wikien-l is for meta-debate and is a place where things too
inflammatory for Wikipedia may be discussed by members of the
community; the arbitration committee is the place where serious
abuse, credibly identified and supported with evidence, can be
addressed with at least some attempt at calm and reason.
Links to offsite attacks and harassment are absolutely not welcome
on Wikipedia, the place for such meta-debate is the mailing lists
and the arbitration committee if the complaint is found to have
merit.
The interpretation of attacks and harassment can be liberal, because
this *absolutely does not* suppress legitimate criticism, it simply
diverts it to the correct venue and keeps it away from the place
where people are trying to maintain the delicate balance that makes
for the very best Wikipedia articles.
Diatribes by banned self-promoters can safely be redirected to
/dev/null.
And now the idea.
===============
Jimmy, here is one thing you, personally, can do that will send an
absolutely unequivocal message that stalking is utterly unacceptable
and has no place on Wikipedia.
Ask the devs to blacklist wikipediareview.com
Only you can do this. Only you have enough reputation capital for
people to see that this is not about rejected BADSITES proposals or
anything else, it is about *the correct venue* for meta debate and
what the actual purpose of Wikipedia is.
No, we do not suppress criticism, but neither are we going to let it
endanger what Wikipedia is here for: building a collaborative
encyclopaedia. Wikipedia welcomes informed criticism, but not at
the risk of the project, because the encyclopaedia is the be-all and
end-all of Wikipedia. We have forums where robust debate is
encouraged, and there is a Really Good Reason why they are at one
remove from the delicate process of nurturing great content. Links
(and especially whole sites) that are primarily devoted to
meta-debate, should be discussed in the right venue, and that is the
mailing list. Escalation to arbcom for well-founded criticism is
guaranteed, with the current constitution of the mailing list, so
let's give it a try.
Guy
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Begin forwarded message:

From: [email protected]
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 12, 2007 12:09:28 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/12/07, Jimmy Wales <[email protected]: wrote:
[email protected] wrote:
I feel very similarly about the project. I have been here for a year
and a half, and I can see a definite overall degradation in quality.
The worst period from my perspective started after WP:ATT was knocked
down in the spring, for no good reason except politics and trolling.
Even since then, it seems that the trolls and misfits have been
gaining the upper hand, and as you say, it's just not fun editing any
more. As I see it, somebody from above needs to acts, and soon, before
we lose a bunch of good people, who'll be hard to get back.
What do you recommend I do?
--Jimbo
Jimbo,
I recommend you set up a small committee (e.g. 9 or less people
total), that represents established Wikipedians, preferably ones
who've been stalked/harassed, the Foundation and ArbCom. The selection
process should be by edict by you and/or the Foundation, not a vote or
poll by the community at large. The committee should then be given a
deadline (e.g. one month) to come up with a set of recommendations,
which should be in the form of a brief rationale essay plus proposed
improved policies. The Foundation should then vote on the
recommendations, and if accepted they should become Foundation-level
policies, like NPOV. The committee should focus on the issues of
bolstering WP:CIV, WP:HAR, WP:NPA, and WP:BLP (and its potential
applicability scope to talk pages and WP editors).
The bottom line that I personally would like to see is a new
editor-friendly environment that protects hard working well meaning
editors from harassment and attacks, while protecting the goals of
NPOV, NOR and V.
Those policies, should they be accepted, should not be subject to
change on the whims of a temporary talk page 'consensus', but only by
another vote by the Foundation.
My own focus is on en-WP; the applicability of these rules to other
languages/projects should be studied, but en-WP should be the top
priority as the flagship project and as a possible example for the
others.
I think the almost sole driving force of most of the good contributors
to WP is the fact that it is *fun*. A poor working atmosphere removes
that motivation, while a good and safe environment will enhance it,
attracting more good people.
We must enforce such an environment from the top down.
Crum375
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Begin forwarded message:

From: SlimVirgin <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Hi all - quick intro
Date: October 12, 2007 9:33:28 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
A big welcome from me too, Allie.
Sarah
On 10/12/07, Sarah Ewart <[email protected]: wrote:
Hi Allie,
Welcome to the Wp and Cyberstalking mailing list. I'm very glad to see
you've joined up.
Cheers,
Sarah
----- Original Message -----
From: "Alison Cassidy" <[email protected]:
To: "Wikipedia and cyberstalking" <[email protected]:
Sent: Saturday, October 13, 2007 2:07 AM
Subject: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Hi all - quick intro
Hi all,
I just joined the list here yesterday (thanks, SlimVirgin!). I'm
User:Alison and I'm just another admin from English Wikipedia.
I've been involved in helping others over the last while in cases of
harassment and stalking on-wiki but recently had an episode of my
own. A banned editor became far too interested in me personally and
started a campaign against me, both on and off wikipedia.
Anyway - glad to be here!
-- Allie
_______________________________________________
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[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
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Begin forwarded message:

From: Alison Cassidy <[email protected]:
Subject: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Hi all - quick intro
Date: October 12, 2007 9:07:09 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Hi all,
I just joined the list here yesterday (thanks, SlimVirgin!). I'm
User:Alison and I'm just another admin from English Wikipedia.
I've been involved in helping others over the last while in cases of
harassment and stalking on-wiki but recently had an episode of my
own. A banned editor became far too interested in me personally and
started a campaign against me, both on and off wikipedia.
Anyway - glad to be here!
-- Allie
_______________________________________________
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Begin forwarded message:

From: Jimmy Wales <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 12, 2007 8:48:46 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
SlimVirgin wrote:
Another editor made that point to me recently -- that we're wasting
our time trying to persuade Jimbo that change is needed, because the
only thing that will cause an institution to change is a disaster. In
other words it seems we have to wait until someone gets seriously
hurt.
 ???
That's just ridiculous.
--Jimbo
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Begin forwarded message:

From: George Herbert <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 8:54:45 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/11/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
On 10/11/07, George Herbert <[email protected]: wrote:
On 10/11/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
On 10/11/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
Here's a good example of the farce. The policy page on attack sites
that the ArbCom recommended the "community" develop is at
Wikipedia:Linking to external harassment. The only problem is that the
main editors are the trolls themselves.
http://vs.aka-online.de/cgi-bin/wppagehiststat.pl
*The first editor, BenB4, is a sockpuppet of banned editor Nrcprm2026.
*Privatemusings is a self-confessed sock.
*WAS 4.250 suggested when I was slashdotted that I open my bank
accounts to lawyers for the Foundation (perhaps because MI5 has not
yet figured out how to pay people discreetly), and who did his best to
keep the issue alive on Jimbo's talk page.
*Miltopia is a former ED admin.
*Hoplon is a suspected Andrew Morrow sock.
*Random832 appears to be the banned Nobs01.
*Dtobias you all know.
Will Beback is struggling valiantly, but really, this is farcical beyond belief.
Sarah
I see Hoplon has been cleared of being a Morrow sock.
This is part of the problem with the cyberstalking responses - to
effectively fight some of the stalkers, we have to more aggressively
pursue them, and that means twisting the presumed innocent knob down a
bit.
Which bites legitimate other users who have strong disagreeing
opinions but are not in fact involved in stalking campaigns.
A lot more of us can fast-draw on the indef block button if we need
to... but I for one fear that doing so will ultimately cause more
damage to Wikipedia than the current unfortunate stalking situation.
George, I'm not sure what could be more damaging than the current
stalking issue. We currently have a situation where volunteers --
including minors -- are being exposed to (in some cases) real danger,
with the Foundation or its appointed ArbCom making things worse for
the volunteer by engaging with the stalkers by e-mail and IRC, and by
distributing their defamatory claims.
Yet the Foundation continues to solicit money from the public under
the guise of creating an encyclopedia. Not one of the issues we've
requested help with has anything to do with creating an encyclopedia.
We don't need transparency for an encyclopedia (quite the reverse). We
don't need liberal unblocking policies (quite the reverse). We don't
need emasculated administrators (quite the reverse). We don't need a
complete lack of civility (quite the reverse).
It's fast reaching the point where the Foundation is just taking the
piss whenever it asks for money.
Sarah
I'm going to put my cold-blooded hat on for a second. Please don't
take what follows to be any lack of personal sympathy for your
situation or an accurate summary of my actual feelings...
+++
The encyclopedia is created by a large number of core editors and
admins, and to a lesser degree less involved peripheral editors and
anon editors. Cyberstalking, while regrettable, is limited and
affecting small numbers of editors. It is unfortunate that many of
those are well respected core editors, but it seems to be a small
proportion of those, and ultimately we can continue to make an
encyclopedia without them.
Changes to protect stalking victims which make others less likely to
participate, such as discouraging anons, or hitting disruptive users /
potential trolls harder and faster and turning quite a few potential
future core editors/admins into enemies by maltreating them instead,
are a net loss to the encyclopedia.
+++
Cold-blooded hat now off.
I do not agree with everything I just wrote, for several reasons:
* How we treat the stalking victims plays into our overall culture's
psyche, and there's a net loss there if we write you and the other
victims off which is out of proportion to your actual page word view
contributions.
* I hope that we can find a middle ground in policy and admin / user
responses to more effectively minimize stalking without significantly
damaging our response to clueless newbie or reformable editors.
* Some of the serial stalkers will continue to plague someone here
even if current victims leave the project, unless we give in on
topical NPOV / accuracy / coverage issues they're contesting, which is
unacceptable to me and most others.
The problem is that the downsides to the naive responses, on either
side, are insidious rather than blatant. Not protecting people
damages us all inside, even if it has little "cold blooded page word
view" impact on the encyclopedia in the short or midterm. Nuking a
bunch of people, some of whom will be innocents caught in the
crossfire, in the name of protecting the current stalking victims eats
our young to preserve some of our old... an example which young / new
users who don't get bit directly will remember, and fester over the
injustice of.
You state that we don't need transparency, liberal unblock policies,
emasculated admins, or a complete lack of civility. I think you're
lumping a bunch of stuff together there unreasonably, and making some
mistaken conclusions.
We do need to fix the civility problem.
We don't have emasculated administrators. Admins who deal with
problem users (and at times, I am one of the active people in that
area, though not constantly) are pulling the trigger on problems more
freely and with less warning steps than they did a year ago and much
less than two years ago, for typical abusers. If you indef'ed someone
with 1-3 edits a couple of years ago there were screams, now it's
ho-hum.
Unblock policies aren't liberal, that I see. Unblock-en-l is being
pretty by the book - the AGF book, but nobody there is naively taking
an unblock applicants word. On-wiki, the percentage of unblock
requests that are granted is going down over time. Someone here on
arbcom can comment on what they are seeing and doing, but I haven't
noticed much there.
Do we need transparency? I think we do. Ultimately, our credibility
as an open project (open contributions, open / free access to the
data) and reference source depends on it. The credibility of the
information in the encyclopedia somewhat rests with who and how it was
written - an open-content created project needs to be transparent
enough for users to be able to see what's going on.
Wikipedia is not just large - it's also credible. That credibility
came from transparency, in large part.
I think that in large part the stalking problem is rather limited and
specific. A few groups and individuals are causing stalking problems
for Wikipedians. Some of them are individual interaction, some are
content based or situational.
The ones that are based on content or situational on-wiki issues seem
easier to deal with. I've toyed with the idea that we full-protect
particularly divisive articles. Simply declare a subject too prone to
fighting over that only admins are trusted to edit it, period. That
takes away much of the direct interaction potential for the parties to
keep trying to fight over it. We have a potential problem that they
then run someone through the experience process and an adminship...
but if anyone is watching the article then that will be a
self-limiting process once the admins' affiliation becomes clear.
For the ones that have migrated out into other internet venues and
personal conflicts (one-sided or mutual), I don't know what we can do
about them.
Unless you're going to propose that the WMF start filing legal claims
over harrassment and restraining orders against Bagley et al, what can
we do to stop him? Even if we do that, I'm not sure how far the law
is on our side... The fight might make Overstock.com look really bad,
but they already look pretty bad in the trade press. WR attackers
mostly aren't doing on-wiki stuff, they've graduated to going direct
to harrass people.
Should we help with this? Yes. What can we, or anyone, do about it
that will actually have effect and shut down the harrassment? That
beats me. The on-wiki stuff doesn't seem terribly effective in those
cases. The legal stuff seems insufficiently clear that we'd win.
I am here because clearly we're not handling any of these situations
well, and the naive "do nothing" and "hit back hard overreaction"
Wikipedia policy responses both seem like really bad ideas to me.
There has to be a middle ground we can make work.
I neither will quietly go along with an anti-stalking counterattack
that ultimately does more harm than good for the encyclopedia, as I
see it, nor sit quietly by and not say or do anything about the
ongoing harrassment / stalking incidents.
If some of you leave, that removes some current active cases from the
problem, but doesn't solve the problem at all. We're left with the
stalkers, and the environment that they're operating successfully in.
I don't want to give them the satisfaction of seeing any of you leave
the project. But I have to keep an open mind for the downsides of
overreactions intended to try to keep people from leaving by
counterattacking too violently or not focusedly enough.
So... please don't go. Please see that we can go to far and damage
the encyclopedia by overreacting, just as we can not go far enough and
damage the encyclopedia by not protecting people. We need stalkee
perspectives on the problem, as well as intelligence about the
problems which are ongoing.
We need some creativity, not bigger clubs.
--
-george william herbert
[email protected]
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Begin forwarded message:

From: Durova <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 7:51:34 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
I agree with part of Rebecca's obervation: it's a matter of time until some Wikipedia stalking issue becomes public knowledge.
That could have positive benefits if, for example, it leads to reforms in Internet harassment law. How it reflects on Wikipedia depends on the Foundation, the ArbCom, and (to some extent) on us. One reason why I consider this list important enough to make it an exception to my general anti-cabalism is that if we collectively get this issue right, it might prevent somebody from getting physically attacked by a banned editor.
-Durova
"What would Karen Silkwood do?"
On 10/11/07, Rebecca <[email protected]: wrote:
I'm increasingly of a similar mindset here. I think Wikipedia was
lucky that this issue didn't blow up publicly around the time of the
Kathy Sierra affair, and I think it's bound to come out - with a great
deal of associated bad press for the project.
Rebecca
On 10/12/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected] : wrote:
: That's exactly how I feel. There's no reason anyone should expose
: themselves to abuse, stalking, defamation, and possibly violence on
: behalf of a project that does nothing to help people who are targeted,
: and which often makes things worse for them. I increasingly see this
: as a matter of public interest. That is, I feel the public needs to be
: warned about it. Money keeps pouring into the Foundation, which (at
: best) does nothing to change the culture, and some of whose Board
: members are actually the ones responsible for it.
:
: Sarah
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Begin forwarded message:

From: SlimVirgin <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 5:34:43 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/11/07, George Herbert <[email protected]: wrote:
On 10/11/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
On 10/11/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
Here's a good example of the farce. The policy page on attack sites
that the ArbCom recommended the "community" develop is at
Wikipedia:Linking to external harassment. The only problem is that the
main editors are the trolls themselves.
http://vs.aka-online.de/cgi-bin/wppagehiststat.pl
*The first editor, BenB4, is a sockpuppet of banned editor Nrcprm2026.
*Privatemusings is a self-confessed sock.
*WAS 4.250 suggested when I was slashdotted that I open my bank
accounts to lawyers for the Foundation (perhaps because MI5 has not
yet figured out how to pay people discreetly), and who did his best to
keep the issue alive on Jimbo's talk page.
*Miltopia is a former ED admin.
*Hoplon is a suspected Andrew Morrow sock.
*Random832 appears to be the banned Nobs01.
*Dtobias you all know.
Will Beback is struggling valiantly, but really, this is farcical beyond belief.
Sarah
I see Hoplon has been cleared of being a Morrow sock.
This is part of the problem with the cyberstalking responses - to
effectively fight some of the stalkers, we have to more aggressively
pursue them, and that means twisting the presumed innocent knob down a
bit.
Which bites legitimate other users who have strong disagreeing
opinions but are not in fact involved in stalking campaigns.
A lot more of us can fast-draw on the indef block button if we need
to... but I for one fear that doing so will ultimately cause more
damage to Wikipedia than the current unfortunate stalking situation.
George, I'm not sure what could be more damaging than the current
stalking issue. We currently have a situation where volunteers --
including minors -- are being exposed to (in some cases) real danger,
with the Foundation or its appointed ArbCom making things worse for
the volunteer by engaging with the stalkers by e-mail and IRC, and by
distributing their defamatory claims.
Yet the Foundation continues to solicit money from the public under
the guise of creating an encyclopedia. Not one of the issues we've
requested help with has anything to do with creating an encyclopedia.
We don't need transparency for an encyclopedia (quite the reverse). We
don't need liberal unblocking policies (quite the reverse). We don't
need emasculated administrators (quite the reverse). We don't need a
complete lack of civility (quite the reverse).
It's fast reaching the point where the Foundation is just taking the
piss whenever it asks for money.
Sarah
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Begin forwarded message:

From: successive denial <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 3:18:52 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/10/07, Chip Berlet <[email protected]: wrote:
At what point do we as Wikipedia editors become complicit? At what point do we step back and consider how we have become enablers and apologists for aggression and bigotry?
That's something we should think through. If I follow [[Views of
Lyndon LaRouche]] and try to fight it out with his people, maybe I
help mitigate some of their worst abuses. As a consequence, am I
giving the page a veneer of neutrality, and by engaging with them
recognizing and rewarding them? Many cranks want nothing so much as
someone to talk with them. Small wonder they look online for human
interaction.
If I let them have their way with the page, the pro-LaRouche slant
will at least be obvious. I also avoid interacting with loons, don't
waste time playing another useless round of dispute resolution, and
don't have to listen to some sanctimonious nit tell me those vicious
conspiracist bigots are contributors in good standing, working with us
in good faith to help write an encyclopedia.
On the larger question, I have come to think that there will be no
significant change from internal pressure. The project will continue
to reward aggressive bullies, unless something happens that causes
damaging public embarrassment, or worse yet tragedy. Nothing is going
to be done to enforce civility and npa unless not doing so threatens
not just the contributors, but the project.
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Begin forwarded message:

From: Sami Harris <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 9:43:19 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Bagley today has an ASM page devoted to Wikipedia. It is more feeble than his usual efforts, but has one feature that needs to be amplified: note how he takes a Fred Bauder public comment and twists them to his own purposes.
Fred had been told on this in no uncertain terms, by myself and others, that he needs to stop making public or email comments that Bagley can twist and distort. He is just totally tone deaf on this issue, no matter how well intentioned he may or may not be.
This situation will be hopeless if members of the Arbitration Committee refuse to learn from their mistake. I am increasingly convinced that they just don't give a damn.
On 10/11/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
Here's a good example of the farce. The policy page on attack sites
that the ArbCom recommended the "community" develop is at
Wikipedia:Linking to external harassment. The only problem is that the
main editors are the trolls themselves.
http://vs.aka-online.de/cgi-bin/wppagehiststat.pl
*The first editor, BenB4, is a sockpuppet of banned editor Nrcprm2026.
*Privatemusings is a self-confessed sock.
*WAS 4.250 suggested when I was slashdotted that I open my bank
accounts to lawyers for the Foundation (perhaps because MI5 has not
yet figured out how to pay people discreetly), and who did his best to
keep the issue alive on Jimbo's talk page.
*Miltopia is a former ED admin.
*Hoplon is a suspected Andrew Morrow sock.
*Random832 appears to be the banned Nobs01.
*Dtobias you all know.
Will Beback is struggling valiantly, but really, this is farcical beyond belief.
Sarah
On 10/11/07, SlimVirgin <[email protected]: wrote:
: On 10/11/07, Sami Harris <[email protected] : wrote:
: : Hear hear. I would add, as one of the few non-administrators on this list,
: : that harassment and stalking is effective in ways that are subtle. It is
: : simply demoralizing, and it wastes time. In my case, it has changed
: : significantly the way I have edited, which I know was the intent of stalkers
: : like Bagley but I can't do anything about that.
: :
: : I no longer have the energy or inclination to commence articles or to go to
: : a great deal of trouble to update the ones in which I am interested.
: :
: : When I first started I commenced articles on people I thought were
: : significant and did not have articles, such as Jack Sandner. Lately my
: : editing tends to be more defensive, such as in George Soros, or commenting
: : on policy pages. I just care less about Wikipedia than I did previously. I
: : feel that I am increasing the value of an entity that does not give a damn
: : if I am harassed, and tells me that if I am harassed I should keep my chin
: : up and not "overreact."
:
: That's exactly how I feel. There's no reason anyone should expose
: themselves to abuse, stalking, defamation, and possibly violence on
: behalf of a project that does nothing to help people who are targeted,
: and which often makes things worse for them. I increasingly see this
: as a matter of public interest. That is, I feel the public needs to be
: warned about it. Money keeps pouring into the Foundation, which (at
: best) does nothing to change the culture, and some of whose Board
: members are actually the ones responsible for it.
:
: Sarah
: :
: : When the subject of stalking and harassment is dealt with by the powers that
: : be, we get stuff like this:
: :
: : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Requests_for_arbitration/Attack_sites/Proposed_decision#Over-reaction
: :
: : which ironically was authored by someone who fled when he was criticized on
: : this list.
: :
: : On 10/11/07, [email protected] <[email protected]: wrote:
: : : I tend to agree that unless a serious culture change takes place in
: : : WP, the project will gradually lose its way and decay.
: : :
: : : I see two major related problems:
: : : 1. Determined POV pushers, often with COI backing, who know how to
: : : play the game, tend to have an edge in various contentious areas, both
: : : policies as well as articles; and
: : : 2. Stalkers/harassers exploit the 'transparency' culture to drive away
: : : admins (or editors) who stand in their way.
: : :
: : : Both issues are related, since strong admins are the backbone of WP;
: : : without them, all we'll have is anarchy, attacks and constant edit
: : : wars. And it is the admins who are most strong minded, who are most
: : : diligent in protecting article neutrality, policies and editors, who
: : : are also most exposed and vulnerable to the stalkers and harassers.
: : :
: : : I myself have not been attacked much on WP or outside (though I got my
: : : share), but I am disappointed in the lack of support others who have
: : : been more seriously attacked are getting.
: : :
: : : I feel that raising these issues openly on WP would not help -- there
: : : is an entrenched culture, shared by many of the mostly white young
: : : Christian males there, many with Internet software development
: : : background, that openness is healthy, and to a degree I agree. I think
: : : what they all miss is that we'll never represent a real cross section
: : : of the world's population, not even the English speaking one, unless
: : : some urgent changes are made, specifically to mandate civility and to
: : : better protect editors against personal attacks. I think such changes
: : : can only be caused by edict from the Foundation or Jimbo.
: : :
: : : Crum375
: : :
: : : On 10/11/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
: : : :
: : : : i hope no one took my message as being critical of Sarah in any way, and
: : : : certainly not an attempt to chase anyone away from a discussion that I
: : fully
: : : : understand can only occur among a small circle of people. My point is
: : : : simply that this fact in anod of itself does not bode well for the
: : future of
: : : : Wikipedia. My point is that perhaps ironically the best attempts to
: : solve
: : : : the problem may turn out to constitute evidence that the problem is more
: : : : serious than we think and perhaps beyond salvation.
: : : :
: : : : I am making a criticism but not of Sarah or anyone here in good faith.
: : : :
: : : : S
: : : :
: : : :
: : : : ----- Original Message ----
: : : : From: K P <[email protected] :
: : : : To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking < [email protected]:
: : : : Sent: Thursday, October 11, 2007 3:37:26 AM
: : : : Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a
: : : : distorted Wikipedia structure
: : : :
: : : :
: : : : On 10/10/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected] : wrote:
: : : : :
: : : : : The issue is not whether this discussion addresses these issues -
: : people
: : : : : made suggestions a month ago that should be policy by now. The
: : problem is
: : : : : that the best proposals made here are unlikely ever to find the
: : consensus
: : : : : among editors, or will among people in authority, to become effective
: : : : : enforced policies.
: : : : :
: : : : : What Chip wrote is sadly I am afraid probably true.
: : : : :
: : : : : The fact is, I am not even sure I should be on this list. The
: : list-serve,
: : : : : or talk pages at AN/I or policy pages, should be where the community
: : : : : proposes and makes changes, not a little e-mail list. I like others
: : have
: : : : : pointed out that this list is necessary to provide a safe space for
: : some
: : : : : people to express themselves openly but the fact is ... that is just
: : : : : shameful that there is even a need for such a safe space.
: : : : :
: : : : : I am afraid that this list will either become the kind of cabal we all
: : : : : openly say does not or should not exist at Wikipedia - or it will be
: : : : utterly
: : : : : ineffectual. Neither of these possibilities is good.
: : : : :
: : : : : Steve
: : : : :
: : : : You make some good points, Steve. I loathe being part of the cabal,
: : : : but this is as close to one as there ever could be on Wikipedia.
: : : :
: : : : That said, there is no way in hell that Slim Virgin could have opened
: : : : her mouth about the way she was treated on Wikipedia without having a
: : : : fist crammed into it as happened every time. The type of harrassment
: : : : she has been subject to is outrageous. If this list gave her a place
: : : : to talk without being verbally battered for being human, without being
: : : : dragged through the reams of gossip about her all over the web, it was
: : : : and is worth it.
: : : :
: : : : And I hope that even one of you heard what I was trying to say that
: : : : there is no relationship between who the stalkers think Slim Virgin is
: : : : and who she actually is--how she was treated keeps arising anew
: : : : because people give too much credit to her stalkers, even she does.
: : : : It took me a long time (and reading Gavin de Becker) to realize this
: : : : after I was stalked--and I'm a very lucky person to have been raised
: : : : partially by a tribal society, so I had a huge safety net within which
: : : : to recover and disappear from the brutality.
: : : :
: : : : For good or for bad, this is the world Slim Virgin lives in, and who
: : : : is anybody to chase her away from it?
: : : :
: : : : I also hope that all of you realize how brutally solitary a person
: : : : feels when they are stalked--giving this list to Slim Virgin, as much
: : : : as I don't like being part of the cabal, was a very important thing to
: : : : do. People needs places where they can say what they want, where they
: : : : can feel that someone is listening. The stalkers took everything Slim
: : : : Virgin does on Wikipedia and the web away from her. What right had
: : : : they?
: : : :
: : : : Sometimes you have to put treating one single person as a human being
: : : : above everything else--everything else. Wikipedia editors and admins
: : : : and Foundation ought to weigh the value of this on a regular basis.
: : : :
: : : : KP
: : : : _______________________________________________
: : : : WpCyberstalking mailing list
: : : : [email protected]
: : : : http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
: : : :
: : : :
: : : : ________________________________
: : : : Be a better Globetrotter. Get better travel answers from someone who
: : knows.
: : : : Yahoo! Answers - Check it out.
: : : : _______________________________________________
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: : : : [email protected]
: : : : http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
: : : :
: : : :
: : : _______________________________________________
: : : WpCyberstalking mailing list
: : : [email protected]
: : : http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
: : :
: :
: :
: : _______________________________________________
: : WpCyberstalking mailing list
: : [email protected]
: : http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
: :
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Begin forwarded message:

From: SlimVirgin <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 8:47:53 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/11/07, Sami Harris <[email protected]: wrote:
Hear hear. I would add, as one of the few non-administrators on this list,
that harassment and stalking is effective in ways that are subtle. It is
simply demoralizing, and it wastes time. In my case, it has changed
significantly the way I have edited, which I know was the intent of stalkers
like Bagley but I can't do anything about that.
I no longer have the energy or inclination to commence articles or to go to
a great deal of trouble to update the ones in which I am interested.
When I first started I commenced articles on people I thought were
significant and did not have articles, such as Jack Sandner. Lately my
editing tends to be more defensive, such as in George Soros, or commenting
on policy pages. I just care less about Wikipedia than I did previously. I
feel that I am increasing the value of an entity that does not give a damn
if I am harassed, and tells me that if I am harassed I should keep my chin
up and not "overreact."
That's exactly how I feel. There's no reason anyone should expose
themselves to abuse, stalking, defamation, and possibly violence on
behalf of a project that does nothing to help people who are targeted,
and which often makes things worse for them. I increasingly see this
as a matter of public interest. That is, I feel the public needs to be
warned about it. Money keeps pouring into the Foundation, which (at
best) does nothing to change the culture, and some of whose Board
members are actually the ones responsible for it.
Sarah
When the subject of stalking and harassment is dealt with by the powers that
be, we get stuff like this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Requests_for_arbitration/Attack_sites/Proposed_decision#Over-reaction
which ironically was authored by someone who fled when he was criticized on
this list.
On 10/11/07, [email protected] <[email protected]: wrote:
I tend to agree that unless a serious culture change takes place in
WP, the project will gradually lose its way and decay.
I see two major related problems:
1. Determined POV pushers, often with COI backing, who know how to
play the game, tend to have an edge in various contentious areas, both
policies as well as articles; and
2. Stalkers/harassers exploit the 'transparency' culture to drive away
admins (or editors) who stand in their way.
Both issues are related, since strong admins are the backbone of WP;
without them, all we'll have is anarchy, attacks and constant edit
wars. And it is the admins who are most strong minded, who are most
diligent in protecting article neutrality, policies and editors, who
are also most exposed and vulnerable to the stalkers and harassers.
I myself have not been attacked much on WP or outside (though I got my
share), but I am disappointed in the lack of support others who have
been more seriously attacked are getting.
I feel that raising these issues openly on WP would not help -- there
is an entrenched culture, shared by many of the mostly white young
Christian males there, many with Internet software development
background, that openness is healthy, and to a degree I agree. I think
what they all miss is that we'll never represent a real cross section
of the world's population, not even the English speaking one, unless
some urgent changes are made, specifically to mandate civility and to
better protect editors against personal attacks. I think such changes
can only be caused by edict from the Foundation or Jimbo.
Crum375
On 10/11/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
i hope no one took my message as being critical of Sarah in any way, and
certainly not an attempt to chase anyone away from a discussion that I
fully
understand can only occur among a small circle of people. My point is
simply that this fact in anod of itself does not bode well for the
future of
Wikipedia. My point is that perhaps ironically the best attempts to
solve
the problem may turn out to constitute evidence that the problem is more
serious than we think and perhaps beyond salvation.
I am making a criticism but not of Sarah or anyone here in good faith.
S
----- Original Message ----
From: K P <[email protected] :
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Sent: Thursday, October 11, 2007 3:37:26 AM
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a
distorted Wikipedia structure
On 10/10/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
The issue is not whether this discussion addresses these issues -
people
made suggestions a month ago that should be policy by now. The
problem is
that the best proposals made here are unlikely ever to find the
consensus
among editors, or will among people in authority, to become effective
enforced policies.
What Chip wrote is sadly I am afraid probably true.
The fact is, I am not even sure I should be on this list. The
list-serve,
or talk pages at AN/I or policy pages, should be where the community
proposes and makes changes, not a little e-mail list. I like others
have
pointed out that this list is necessary to provide a safe space for
some
people to express themselves openly but the fact is ... that is just
shameful that there is even a need for such a safe space.
I am afraid that this list will either become the kind of cabal we all
openly say does not or should not exist at Wikipedia - or it will be
utterly
ineffectual. Neither of these possibilities is good.
Steve
You make some good points, Steve. I loathe being part of the cabal,
but this is as close to one as there ever could be on Wikipedia.
That said, there is no way in hell that Slim Virgin could have opened
her mouth about the way she was treated on Wikipedia without having a
fist crammed into it as happened every time. The type of harrassment
she has been subject to is outrageous. If this list gave her a place
to talk without being verbally battered for being human, without being
dragged through the reams of gossip about her all over the web, it was
and is worth it.
And I hope that even one of you heard what I was trying to say that
there is no relationship between who the stalkers think Slim Virgin is
and who she actually is--how she was treated keeps arising anew
because people give too much credit to her stalkers, even she does.
It took me a long time (and reading Gavin de Becker) to realize this
after I was stalked--and I'm a very lucky person to have been raised
partially by a tribal society, so I had a huge safety net within which
to recover and disappear from the brutality.
For good or for bad, this is the world Slim Virgin lives in, and who
is anybody to chase her away from it?
I also hope that all of you realize how brutally solitary a person
feels when they are stalked--giving this list to Slim Virgin, as much
as I don't like being part of the cabal, was a very important thing to
do. People needs places where they can say what they want, where they
can feel that someone is listening. The stalkers took everything Slim
Virgin does on Wikipedia and the web away from her. What right had
they?
Sometimes you have to put treating one single person as a human being
above everything else--everything else. Wikipedia editors and admins
and Foundation ought to weigh the value of this on a regular basis.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
________________________________
Be a better Globetrotter. Get better travel answers from someone who
knows.
Yahoo! Answers - Check it out.
_______________________________________________
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[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
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Begin forwarded message:

From: Sami Harris <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 8:39:33 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Hear hear. I would add, as one of the few non-administrators on this list, that harassment and stalking is effective in ways that are subtle. It is simply demoralizing, and it wastes time. In my case, it has changed significantly the way I have edited, which I know was the intent of stalkers like Bagley but I can't do anything about that.
I no longer have the energy or inclination to commence articles or to go to a great deal of trouble to update the ones in which I am interested.
When I first started I commenced articles on people I thought were significant and did not have articles, such as Jack Sandner. Lately my editing tends to be more defensive, such as in George Soros, or commenting on policy pages. I just care less about Wikipedia than I did previously. I feel that I am increasing the value of an entity that does not give a damn if I am harassed, and tells me that if I am harassed I should keep my chin up and not "overreact."
When the subject of stalking and harassment is dealt with by the powers that be, we get stuff like this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Requests_for_arbitration/Attack_sites/Proposed_decision#Over-reaction
which ironically was authored by someone who fled when he was criticized on this list.
On 10/11/07, [email protected] <[email protected]: wrote:
I tend to agree that unless a serious culture change takes place in
WP, the project will gradually lose its way and decay.
I see two major related problems:
1. Determined POV pushers, often with COI backing, who know how to
play the game, tend to have an edge in various contentious areas, both
policies as well as articles; and
2. Stalkers/harassers exploit the 'transparency' culture to drive away
admins (or editors) who stand in their way.
Both issues are related, since strong admins are the backbone of WP;
without them, all we'll have is anarchy, attacks and constant edit
wars. And it is the admins who are most strong minded, who are most
diligent in protecting article neutrality, policies and editors, who
are also most exposed and vulnerable to the stalkers and harassers.
I myself have not been attacked much on WP or outside (though I got my
share), but I am disappointed in the lack of support others who have
been more seriously attacked are getting.
I feel that raising these issues openly on WP would not help -- there
is an entrenched culture, shared by many of the mostly white young
Christian males there, many with Internet software development
background, that openness is healthy, and to a degree I agree. I think
what they all miss is that we'll never represent a real cross section
of the world's population, not even the English speaking one, unless
some urgent changes are made, specifically to mandate civility and to
better protect editors against personal attacks. I think such changes
can only be caused by edict from the Foundation or Jimbo.
Crum375
On 10/11/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
:
: i hope no one took my message as being critical of Sarah in any way, and
: certainly not an attempt to chase anyone away from a discussion that I fully
: understand can only occur among a small circle of people. My point is
: simply that this fact in anod of itself does not bode well for the future of
: Wikipedia. My point is that perhaps ironically the best attempts to solve
: the problem may turn out to constitute evidence that the problem is more
: serious than we think and perhaps beyond salvation.
:
: I am making a criticism but not of Sarah or anyone here in good faith.
:
: S
:
:
: ----- Original Message ----
: From: K P <[email protected] :
: To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
: Sent: Thursday, October 11, 2007 3:37:26 AM
: Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a
: distorted Wikipedia structure
:
:
: On 10/10/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
: :
: : The issue is not whether this discussion addresses these issues - people
: : made suggestions a month ago that should be policy by now. The problem is
: : that the best proposals made here are unlikely ever to find the consensus
: : among editors, or will among people in authority, to become effective
: : enforced policies.
: :
: : What Chip wrote is sadly I am afraid probably true.
: :
: : The fact is, I am not even sure I should be on this list. The list-serve,
: : or talk pages at AN/I or policy pages, should be where the community
: : proposes and makes changes, not a little e-mail list. I like others have
: : pointed out that this list is necessary to provide a safe space for some
: : people to express themselves openly but the fact is ... that is just
: : shameful that there is even a need for such a safe space.
: :
: : I am afraid that this list will either become the kind of cabal we all
: : openly say does not or should not exist at Wikipedia - or it will be
: utterly
: : ineffectual. Neither of these possibilities is good.
: :
: : Steve
: :
: You make some good points, Steve. I loathe being part of the cabal,
: but this is as close to one as there ever could be on Wikipedia.
:
: That said, there is no way in hell that Slim Virgin could have opened
: her mouth about the way she was treated on Wikipedia without having a
: fist crammed into it as happened every time. The type of harrassment
: she has been subject to is outrageous. If this list gave her a place
: to talk without being verbally battered for being human, without being
: dragged through the reams of gossip about her all over the web, it was
: and is worth it.
:
: And I hope that even one of you heard what I was trying to say that
: there is no relationship between who the stalkers think Slim Virgin is
: and who she actually is--how she was treated keeps arising anew
: because people give too much credit to her stalkers, even she does.
: It took me a long time (and reading Gavin de Becker) to realize this
: after I was stalked--and I'm a very lucky person to have been raised
: partially by a tribal society, so I had a huge safety net within which
: to recover and disappear from the brutality.
:
: For good or for bad, this is the world Slim Virgin lives in, and who
: is anybody to chase her away from it?
:
: I also hope that all of you realize how brutally solitary a person
: feels when they are stalked--giving this list to Slim Virgin, as much
: as I don't like being part of the cabal, was a very important thing to
: do. People needs places where they can say what they want, where they
: can feel that someone is listening. The stalkers took everything Slim
: Virgin does on Wikipedia and the web away from her. What right had
: they?
:
: Sometimes you have to put treating one single person as a human being
: above everything else--everything else. Wikipedia editors and admins
: and Foundation ought to weigh the value of this on a regular basis.
:
: KP
: _______________________________________________
: WpCyberstalking mailing list
: [email protected]
: http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
:
:
: ________________________________
: Be a better Globetrotter. Get better travel answers from someone who knows.
: Yahoo! Answers - Check it out.
: _______________________________________________
: WpCyberstalking mailing list
: [email protected]
: http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
:
:
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: [email protected]
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 7:00:43 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
I tend to agree that unless a serious culture change takes place in
WP, the project will gradually lose its way and decay.
I see two major related problems:
1. Determined POV pushers, often with COI backing, who know how to
play the game, tend to have an edge in various contentious areas, both
policies as well as articles; and
2. Stalkers/harassers exploit the 'transparency' culture to drive away
admins (or editors) who stand in their way.
Both issues are related, since strong admins are the backbone of WP;
without them, all we'll have is anarchy, attacks and constant edit
wars. And it is the admins who are most strong minded, who are most
diligent in protecting article neutrality, policies and editors, who
are also most exposed and vulnerable to the stalkers and harassers.
I myself have not been attacked much on WP or outside (though I got my
share), but I am disappointed in the lack of support others who have
been more seriously attacked are getting.
I feel that raising these issues openly on WP would not help -- there
is an entrenched culture, shared by many of the mostly white young
Christian males there, many with Internet software development
background, that openness is healthy, and to a degree I agree. I think
what they all miss is that we'll never represent a real cross section
of the world's population, not even the English speaking one, unless
some urgent changes are made, specifically to mandate civility and to
better protect editors against personal attacks. I think such changes
can only be caused by edict from the Foundation or Jimbo.
Crum375
On 10/11/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
i hope no one took my message as being critical of Sarah in any way, and
certainly not an attempt to chase anyone away from a discussion that I fully
understand can only occur among a small circle of people. My point is
simply that this fact in anod of itself does not bode well for the future of
Wikipedia. My point is that perhaps ironically the best attempts to solve
the problem may turn out to constitute evidence that the problem is more
serious than we think and perhaps beyond salvation.
I am making a criticism but not of Sarah or anyone here in good faith.
S
----- Original Message ----
From: K P <[email protected]:
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Sent: Thursday, October 11, 2007 3:37:26 AM
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a
distorted Wikipedia structure
On 10/10/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
The issue is not whether this discussion addresses these issues - people
made suggestions a month ago that should be policy by now. The problem is
that the best proposals made here are unlikely ever to find the consensus
among editors, or will among people in authority, to become effective
enforced policies.
What Chip wrote is sadly I am afraid probably true.
The fact is, I am not even sure I should be on this list. The list-serve,
or talk pages at AN/I or policy pages, should be where the community
proposes and makes changes, not a little e-mail list. I like others have
pointed out that this list is necessary to provide a safe space for some
people to express themselves openly but the fact is ... that is just
shameful that there is even a need for such a safe space.
I am afraid that this list will either become the kind of cabal we all
openly say does not or should not exist at Wikipedia - or it will be
utterly
ineffectual. Neither of these possibilities is good.
Steve
You make some good points, Steve. I loathe being part of the cabal,
but this is as close to one as there ever could be on Wikipedia.
That said, there is no way in hell that Slim Virgin could have opened
her mouth about the way she was treated on Wikipedia without having a
fist crammed into it as happened every time. The type of harrassment
she has been subject to is outrageous. If this list gave her a place
to talk without being verbally battered for being human, without being
dragged through the reams of gossip about her all over the web, it was
and is worth it.
And I hope that even one of you heard what I was trying to say that
there is no relationship between who the stalkers think Slim Virgin is
and who she actually is--how she was treated keeps arising anew
because people give too much credit to her stalkers, even she does.
It took me a long time (and reading Gavin de Becker) to realize this
after I was stalked--and I'm a very lucky person to have been raised
partially by a tribal society, so I had a huge safety net within which
to recover and disappear from the brutality.
For good or for bad, this is the world Slim Virgin lives in, and who
is anybody to chase her away from it?
I also hope that all of you realize how brutally solitary a person
feels when they are stalked--giving this list to Slim Virgin, as much
as I don't like being part of the cabal, was a very important thing to
do. People needs places where they can say what they want, where they
can feel that someone is listening. The stalkers took everything Slim
Virgin does on Wikipedia and the web away from her. What right had
they?
Sometimes you have to put treating one single person as a human being
above everything else--everything else. Wikipedia editors and admins
and Foundation ought to weigh the value of this on a regular basis.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
________________________________
Be a better Globetrotter. Get better travel answers from someone who knows.
Yahoo! Answers - Check it out.
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: steven rubenstein <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 11, 2007 3:46:34 AM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
i hope no one took my message as being critical of Sarah in any way, and certainly not an attempt to chase anyone away from a discussion that I fully understand can only occur among a small circle of people. My point is simply that this fact in anod of itself does not bode well for the future of Wikipedia. My point is that perhaps ironically the best attempts to solve the problem may turn out to constitute evidence that the problem is more serious than we think and perhaps beyond salvation.
I am making a criticism but not of Sarah or anyone here in good faith.
S
----- Original Message ----
From: K P <[email protected]:
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Sent: Thursday, October 11, 2007 3:37:26 AM
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
On 10/10/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
 :
 : The issue is not whether this discussion addresses these issues - people
 : made suggestions a month ago that should be policy by now. The problem is
 : that the best proposals made here are unlikely ever to find the consensus
 : among editors, or will among people in authority, to become effective
 : enforced policies.
 :
 : What Chip wrote is sadly I am afraid probably true.
 :
 : The fact is, I am not even sure I should be on this list. The list-serve,
 : or talk pages at AN/I or policy pages, should be where the community
 : proposes and makes changes, not a little e-mail list. I like others have
 : pointed out that this list is necessary to provide a safe space for some
 : people to express themselves openly but the fact is ... that is just
 : shameful that there is even a need for such a safe space.
 :
 : I am afraid that this list will either become the kind of cabal we all
 : openly say does not or should not exist at Wikipedia - or it will be utterly
 : ineffectual. Neither of these possibilities is good.
 :
 : Steve
 :
You make some good points, Steve. I loathe being part of the cabal,
but this is as close to one as there ever could be on Wikipedia.
That said, there is no way in hell that Slim Virgin could have opened
her mouth about the way she was treated on Wikipedia without having a
fist crammed into it as happened every time. The type of harrassment
she has been subject to is outrageous. If this list gave her a place
to talk without being verbally battered for being human, without being
dragged through the reams of gossip about her all over the web, it was
and is worth it.
And I hope that even one of you heard what I was trying to say that
there is no relationship between who the stalkers think Slim Virgin is
and who she actually is--how she was treated keeps arising anew
because people give too much credit to her stalkers, even she does.
It took me a long time (and reading Gavin de Becker) to realize this
after I was stalked--and I'm a very lucky person to have been raised
partially by a tribal society, so I had a huge safety net within which
to recover and disappear from the brutality.
For good or for bad, this is the world Slim Virgin lives in, and who
is anybody to chase her away from it?
I also hope that all of you realize how brutally solitary a person
feels when they are stalked--giving this list to Slim Virgin, as much
as I don't like being part of the cabal, was a very important thing to
do. People needs places where they can say what they want, where they
can feel that someone is listening. The stalkers took everything Slim
Virgin does on Wikipedia and the web away from her. What right had
they?
Sometimes you have to put treating one single person as a human being
above everything else--everything else. Wikipedia editors and admins
and Foundation ought to weigh the value of this on a regular basis.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking
Be a better Globetrotter. Get better travel answers from someone who knows.
Yahoo! Answers - Check it out.
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

Begin forwarded message:

From: K P <[email protected]:
Subject: Re: [Wikipedia and cyberstalking] Ponder our complicity in a distorted Wikipedia structure
Date: October 10, 2007 7:37:26 PM PDT
To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
Reply-To: Wikipedia and cyberstalking <[email protected]:
On 10/10/07, steven rubenstein <[email protected]: wrote:
The issue is not whether this discussion addresses these issues - people
made suggestions a month ago that should be policy by now. The problem is
that the best proposals made here are unlikely ever to find the consensus
among editors, or will among people in authority, to become effective
enforced policies.
What Chip wrote is sadly I am afraid probably true.
The fact is, I am not even sure I should be on this list. The list-serve,
or talk pages at AN/I or policy pages, should be where the community
proposes and makes changes, not a little e-mail list. I like others have
pointed out that this list is necessary to provide a safe space for some
people to express themselves openly but the fact is ... that is just
shameful that there is even a need for such a safe space.
I am afraid that this list will either become the kind of cabal we all
openly say does not or should not exist at Wikipedia - or it will be utterly
ineffectual. Neither of these possibilities is good.
Steve
You make some good points, Steve. I loathe being part of the cabal,
but this is as close to one as there ever could be on Wikipedia.
That said, there is no way in hell that Slim Virgin could have opened
her mouth about the way she was treated on Wikipedia without having a
fist crammed into it as happened every time. The type of harrassment
she has been subject to is outrageous. If this list gave her a place
to talk without being verbally battered for being human, without being
dragged through the reams of gossip about her all over the web, it was
and is worth it.
And I hope that even one of you heard what I was trying to say that
there is no relationship between who the stalkers think Slim Virgin is
and who she actually is--how she was treated keeps arising anew
because people give too much credit to her stalkers, even she does.
It took me a long time (and reading Gavin de Becker) to realize this
after I was stalked--and I'm a very lucky person to have been raised
partially by a tribal society, so I had a huge safety net within which
to recover and disappear from the brutality.
For good or for bad, this is the world Slim Virgin lives in, and who
is anybody to chase her away from it?
I also hope that all of you realize how brutally solitary a person
feels when they are stalked--giving this list to Slim Virgin, as much
as I don't like being part of the cabal, was a very important thing to
do. People needs places where they can say what they want, where they
can feel that someone is listening. The stalkers took everything Slim
Virgin does on Wikipedia and the web away from her. What right had
they?
Sometimes you have to put treating one single person as a human being
above everything else--everything else. Wikipedia editors and admins
and Foundation ought to weigh the value of this on a regular basis.
KP
_______________________________________________
WpCyberstalking mailing list
[email protected]
http://lists.wikia.com/mailman/listinfo/wpcyberstalking

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