User talk:Brews ohare

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Portrait of JR Brews



Seems like you've been bumping up against some people who don't know what they are talking about while trying to improve the ontology entry. I'll try and see if my voice can help. Thanks for your efforts. Sorry to see how much trouble you've been having. - Atfyfe (talk) 20:23, 19 August 2013 (UTC)

On improving the editing climate[edit]

“I am not a champion of lost causes, but of causes not yet won.” Norman Thomas, quoted by Justice Sotomayor
“Substantial unanswered questions are raised when men seek ... solutions which are not based on real conditions.” RA Chikota & MC Moran

“Increased democratic deliberation, based upon rewarding good political judgment ... harnesses the contest among ambitious leaders to the necessity of giving good advice” --- Peter Breiner Max Weber & democratic politics

►      …      ♫       …       ◄     

Tar babies[edit]

Br'er Rabbit meets the tar baby; an encounter with enforcement.

Arbitration ‘hearings’ are tar babies. Once you attract administrators' attention, residual attacks and arbitration follow you 'round like gnats in the Quebec woods.

Great to have you back![edit]

Hey Brews. I just noticed you'd returned to editing and wanted to let you know that it's great having you back. I was never too clear on exactly what the ArbCom drama was all about and didn't want to interfere, but I'm glad that it's finally over. Anyway, hope you weren't too discouraged and that we'll be able to work on some articles again in the future. -Roger (talk) 20:54, 21 April 2010 (UTC)

How's it Hanging Brews?[edit]

Hey I was checking out the Citzendieum started by Larry Sanger. I'm not suggesting you leave wikipedia or anything of the sort but the way that site is set up with your credentials I think you would make a excellent addition to their Editor ranks. They require you to be a expert but you would have a part in reviewing submitted content and making sure it is correct. Not advocating for you, just figured to point out that you could also contribute there with your qualifications. Hell In A Bucket (talk) 08:42, 16 June 2010 (UTC)

Welcome back to physics![edit]

SpecialBarnstar.png Welcome back to physics!
Count Iblis (talk) 21:36, 27 June 2010 (UTC)


Merci pour la reconnaissance :) Dr.K. λogosπraxis 22:53, 2 September 2010 (UTC)


Tireless Contributor Barnstar.gif The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
In recognition of your inspirational, tireless and enthusiastic contributions in many diverse areas of Wikipedia. Dr.K. λogosπraxis 06:17, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
Design Barnstar.png The Graphic Designer's Barnstar
In recognition of your many fine, tasteful and meticulous technical drawings which illuminate and illustrate so many scientific concepts. Dr.K. λogosπraxis 06:17, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
Barnstar-lightbulb3.png The Technology Barnstar
For your excellent contributions to science articles. Dr.K. λogosπraxis 06:17, 5 September 2010 (UTC)
  • I agree, they are well deserved. Brews ohare, please learn Portuguese and start editing in the Portuguese Wikipedia, because unlike here, there you will be welcome! AmigoDoPaulo (talk) 14:11, 5 September 2010 (UTC)

Needed image[edit]

Hi Brews ohare! I need an image representing a positive feedback system (dual to your image about negative feedback, simply with "plus" instead the "minus" of the lower summer input). I would like to use it in positive feedback, Schmitt trigger and flip-flop pages. I also need an image representing 100% negative feedback system (without β in the feedback loop) to place it in emitter follower and voltage follower. Also, do you have any idea how to recreate this image using vector graphics as an SVG file? I have already installed Inkscape but I don't know how to open an existing image to edit it. Would you help me? Regards, Circuit dreamer (talk, contribs, email) 06:54, 9 November 2010 (UTC)

Hi Circuit dreamer: My approach has been to use Microsoft Excel to draw the image and save it as a png or jpg file in Microsoft paint. For example, you possible can load the existing diagram and simply block out labels you don't want and re-save the file on WP commons using a new file name. I haven't learned how to do SVG, and haven't used Inkscape. I'd be happy to hear your advice about these tools. Brews ohare (talk) 14:53, 9 November 2010 (UTC)
Thank you for the responsiveness. Today I started working with Inkscape. I noted that if I right-click directly the image in the page, I can save it only as png or bitmap. But if I left-click it, then go to its page and left-click the link below the image, I can save it as svg and then to open it with Inkscape. I tried also to convert your bitmap image into curves using trace bitmap options of the program. But I haven't managed to select a separate object to duplicate or to delete it. Obviously, there is a lot to learn... Regards, Circuit dreamer (talk, contribs, email) 17:04, 9 November 2010 (UTC)

WP:AE#Request concerning Brews ohare[edit]

Here we go again. Since you can't help but violate your topic ban, I've requested that you get blocked for the rest of it. Headbomb {talk / contribs / physics / books} 01:48, 10 November 2010 (UTC)

Please see my closure of this enforcement request, and let me know if you have any further comments. My conclusion is that you have agreed to make no more than one revert per article per week on anything in the natural sciences. In my mind, that includes mathematics. Your binding-voluntary ban expires at the same time as your topic ban from physics, that is, 22 August 2011. We have agreed to your stipulation that you may be blocked up to one week each time we decide that the new ban is violated. Thank you, EdJohnston (talk) 18:07, 12 November 2010 (UTC)
EdJohnston: Regardless of your personal definition of "natural sciences", they do not include mathematics according to the everyday understanding of this term. See here. The "natural sciences" are empirical in nature; mathematics is not. Brews ohare (talk) 15:33, 15 November 2010 (UTC)
Obviously, my voluntary restriction was volunteered on the basis of the common interpretation of ordinary English. Brews ohare (talk) 16:08, 15 November 2010 (UTC)
Very well. Please see WP:A/R/A#Request to amend prior case: Speed of light. T. Canens (talk) 16:39, 15 November 2010 (UTC)
This escalation of a minor dispute to the level of a Request to amend a prior case is unwarranted. The whole matter could be settled without such drama. As it turns out, this request for amendment has since been transformed into a completely different matter, that can no longer be viewed as a Request for amendment, but is in fact an entirely new Case based upon who knows what (no discovery has been done; it's all based upon gossip in secret among admins and bald assertions by vested interests). Brews ohare (talk) 20:31, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

Proposed one-year ban[edit]

Following up on the above notification of the request, I'm leaving you this note to let you know that in response to the above amendment request, one of my colleagues has proposed a one-year ban for you. You may not have seen that proposal, so I'm formally notifying you here that this motion has been proposed, and to also give you a chance to make a statement. I, for one, will delay voting until you have had a chance to make a statement at that amendment page. Carcharoth (talk) 02:34, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

This one-year ban exceeds by far the actual proposal by Timotheus Canens, already far in excess of the voluntary restriction agreed to. There is no proportion here, but punishment without regard for the crime, a shucking of propriety and responsible adjudication. Brews ohare (talk) 00:44, 17 November 2010 (UTC)
It's not punishment, and there's no crime. It's just that you've made it more clear to more people that you and WP need some time apart. Dicklyon (talk) 06:08, 17 November 2010 (UTC)
What's clear to me is that you, Blackburne and Headbomb need to find a different target for your nonsense. Brews ohare (talk) 06:17, 17 November 2010 (UTC)
Let's make one thing clear, I'm not hounding you, and I have never done so. I don't watch your page, nor do I stalk you through Special:Contributions/Brews ohare just to check if you violated your ban first thing in the morning. YOU violate your ban by doing things like editing WikiProject Physics' talk page, and making physics related edits on various articles I happen to have on my watchlist, then I react. If I was hounding you, don't you think I'd have reported you for the brouhaha you made at the Pythagorean theorem, or the cross product discussion thingamajig other people mentioned, or would have failed to notice that you edited Oliver Heaviside's article for weeks? If I was so hellbent on getting you banned, why did I give you a "free pass" when you edited WT:PHYS just a few weeks ago instead of jumping on the occasion to get you kicked out once again? That you insisted on screwing yourself over at ANI is your own fault.
And for general reference, the scope of ARBCOM proceedings are as wide and as flexible as the arbitrators deems the situation warrants. You had millions of chances, and you blew them all. Over the course of the last 16 or so months, you accused myself, JohnBlackburne, Sandstein, Timotheus Canens, Dicklyon, Michael C Price, Martin Hogbin, Psychim62, Finell, Dvdm, and countless others of being psychotic obsessive clueless maniacs devoid of judgment, or variants thereof, and the entirety of ARBCOM of being unable, unwilling, or otherwise unqualified to judge. Yet the possibility that you are the problem, and not the rest of the world does not even cross your mind. Even Count Iblis who stood by you most of the time wants a 0RR restriction on you and that doesn't make you flinch. You see yourself as the lone brave dissenter who dared speak against "Wikipedia establishment", in the veins of Galileo or Giordano Bruno, or perhaps as the fictitious Mikael Blomkvist who gets sentenced to prison through bureaucratic means because he stood up to corporate interests, but the reality is that you are more like that guy who climbs the Reichstag because he can't get his way.
And that's why you're getting kicked out. Reply or don't, but knowing you, you'll probably just revert this post or delete the section. Doesn't really matter to me.
I wish you all the best out there. A shame it had to come to this, but you forced our hand. Headbomb {talk / contribs / physics / books} 08:09, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

Ive just left a note of congratulations for headbomb on his page, his manipulations and exaggerations have finally worked and you have been sitebanned. Shame it had to happen this way but maybe now he's had his pound of flesh he'll leave others alone but I doubt it. Hell In A Bucket (talk) 14:49, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

Headbomb: It's great that you have such a very positive self image. It is totally opposite to mine. According to me, you have hounded me incessantly over things as minor as adding a quote to the article on Heaviside, which you claimed was a physics-related topic violation because this man wrote physics papers. You promptly brought a case against me and then deleted the quote as a contribution from a "banned user". Wow, what a person is forced to do! The number of trivial actions you have brought is mind boggling, and for you to feel that you were "forced" to do that is, well, amazing to put it mildly, particularly because what you "had" to do was damaging to WP and to its editing climate. However, I congratulate you on your success in eliminating me from WP. I didn't think you would succeed, but WP administrators are not always wise, again to put it mildly. Brews ohare (talk) 14:54, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

Oh, and your statement that I accused you and "countless others of being psychotic obsessive clueless maniacs devoid of judgment, or variants thereof, and the entirety of ARBCOM of being unable, unwilling, or otherwise unqualified to judge" is a fabrication from whole cloth, an accomplishment you have exhibited repeatedly in your testimony in cases, in which testimony your adherence to fact is not a strong point. Brews ohare (talk) 15:50, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

Arbitration amendment: Site banned for one year[edit]

The Speed of light case is supplemented as follows:

Brews ohare (talk · contribs) is banned from Wikipedia for a period of one year.

Passed by motion 8 to 1 at 14:50, 18 November 2010 (UTC) On behalf of the Arbitration Committee Dougweller (talk) 14:55, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

November 2010[edit]

To enforce an arbitration decision, you have been blocked from editing for a period of one year. Once the block has expired, you are welcome to make useful contributions. If you believe this block is unjustified, please read the guide to appealing arbitration enforcement blocks and follow the instructions there to appeal your block. Dougweller (talk) 14:56, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Notice to administrators: In a 2010 decision, the Committee held that "Administrators are prohibited from reversing or overturning (explicitly or in substance) any action taken by another administrator pursuant to the terms of an active arbitration remedy, and explicitly noted as being taken to enforce said remedy, except: (a) with the written authorization of the Committee, or (b) following a clear, substantial, and active consensus of uninvolved editors at a community discussion noticeboard (such as WP:AN or WP:ANI). If consensus in such discussions is hard to judge or unclear, the parties should submit a request for clarification on the proper page. Any administrator that overturns an enforcement action outside of these circumstances shall be subject to appropriate sanctions, up to and including desysopping, at the discretion of the Committee."

And so a sparking mathematics edit of one sentence which Headbomb claimed was a physics topic-ban violation, a claim not supported by EdJohnston, among others, all of whom found this to be a mathematics related edit supported by mathematics books as sources, leads to a site ban. Amazing!. Brews ohare (talk) 15:03, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

I don't expect you are particularly receptive to advice at this point, but this still need to be said so that you have an opportunity to reflect upon it before your eventual return: no single edit of yours led to a site ban; many many months of trying to skirt your restriction, of stoking old battles, and of complete refusal to accept even the possibility that your own behavior had a hand in your sanctions led to a site ban. — Coren (talk) 15:21, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Also, just to note: Any appeal of this ban must be addressed only to the Arbitration Committee (via their procedure given here) or to Jimbo Wales. NW (Talk) 15:51, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Welcome back[edit]

Nice seeing you back Brews. Dr.K. λogosπraxis 19:49, 21 November 2011 (UTC)

Dr K: Thanks for the welcome. I hope to steer clear of my detractors. Brews ohare (talk) 20:21, 21 November 2011 (UTC)

A word of advice[edit]

Please consider easing back in. In particular, if you concentrate on your excellent work with illustrations and diagrams, you are very unlikely to end up in trouble. Return to editing to areas where you ran into trouble gradually, if at all, and the chances that things go amiss go down exponentially.

Welcome back. — Coren (talk) 20:26, 21 November 2011 (UTC)

Coren: I appreciate your interest. As a "gradual" approach to areas where trouble has occurred in the past, my plan is not to avoid these areas entirely, as they are of great interest to me, but to avoid engaging in discussion with those editors that have demonstrated an unwillingness for conversation. That undoubtedly will mean abandoning some topics simply to avoid dispute, at the cost of seeing these matters inadequately presented on WP. However, it is entirely clear to me that any such engagement in which these editors choose to dispute with me can never be resolved on WP regardless of the merits, and will only result in ArbCom or ANI engagements that, in my view, are hopeless due to the unfortunate way these matters are handled here. Brews ohare (talk)

Welcome back![edit]

SpecialBarnstar.png Welcome back!
Count Iblis (talk) 02:14, 22 November 2011 (UTC) 
Thank you, Count. I hope we may have some interesting dialog concerning article content. Brews ohare (talk) 14:14, 22 November 2011 (UTC)

And from me ... welcome. Abtract (talk) 18:22, 24 November 2011 (UTC)

Hey, Abrtact, thank you. I hope we can enjoy one another's contributions as before; I hope to avoid most of the drama this time around. Brews ohare (talk) 20:19, 24 November 2011 (UTC)

Welcome back[edit]

I may have jumped the gun last time, but I hope I'm getting things right now. Anyway, welcome back! -Roger (talk) 18:11, 26 November 2011 (UTC)

Thanks Roger. I've always enjoyed working with you on our circuit interests. Brews ohare (talk) 18:17, 26 November 2011 (UTC)

Edits to Talk:Speed of light[edit]

Just a reminder of the arbitration decision posted to WP:ARBSL as archived in this enforcement post. You should also take note of the advice given above, which I think is especially pertinent here.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 18:24, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

Hi John: I have no intention of engaging in any discussion on this topic: however, there are problems on speed of light that need to be addressed by those that so diligently look after this article. Brews ohare (talk) 18:27, 29 November 2011 (UTC)
John Brews, you can satisfy your need to advise on speed of light, and still abide by your indefinite ban on posting there, by posting your suggestions here on your talk page. I'm sure anyone who cares will watch and notice. Dicklyon (talk) 18:33, 29 November 2011 (UTC)
Hi Dick: Thanks for that suggestion, which had not occurred to me. However, beyond my reverted attempt to point out some difficulties with the article, I don't intend to engage. Having discovered how editors react at Talk:Speed of light, I predict that any engagement there would be futile. Brews ohare (talk) 18:46, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

I would advice Brews to avoid lengthy arguments that go nowhere. It is ok. to kick off a discussion, but then read carefully what the feedback is. If you find that you need to repeat things that you have already posted, that's already a red flag. Only if you think that what you wrote was not properly understood, you could think about clarifying that, but after that point, it's best to conclude that issue. In this case, you won't be able to clarify in the lead the definition of the vacuum, some weeks ago I also made a comment about that, but the consensus is that the lead shouldn't be too technical.

But, of course, Brews does have the right to at least raise an issue, even if it has already been discussed 2 years ago. The problem was never starting a discussion but ending it, which often involves having to accept that there is a lack of consensus for improving an article. You can't override that by arguing more, because this is ultimately a matter of taste. So, if the editors want to keep things simple in the lead, you can say that you don't agree with that, but it is then not productive to continue arguing why it should still be changed. Count Iblis (talk) 19:03, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

Count: Excellent advice. I am subject to repeating myself when it really is of no use. Brews ohare (talk) 19:10, 29 November 2011 (UTC)
Actually, the right to bring things up doesn't extend to pages from which you are indefinitely banned. Dicklyon (talk) 19:40, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

Note that I did edit some pages some time ago on related issue, like here where explicit formulae are given for the effective index of refraction in vacuum in the presence of a magnetic field. Wikipedia lacks a lot of content on such advanced topics, so there is a lot of work to do.

Also, within classical electrodynamics, you could think about creating a new article based on this recent article on the self-force. This is an old problem that was until recently never satisfactorily solved. After the development of quantum electrodynamics, this became an obsolete topic, so it was ignored. But, now that the problem has been solved, you could think about re-organizing all the Wiki-articles on this topic, like the one on Abraham-Lorenz force etc. etc. as they are actually wrong. Count Iblis (talk) 20:18, 29 November 2011 (UTC)

These are interesting suggestions. Of course, the improvement of these articles involves some serious research on my part, so I'll have to see whether the itch to do that develops in me. As you may have noted, my comments on the speed of light article are in the nature of conceptual difficulties and not detailed appraisal of the experimental impact of these problems. Brews ohare (talk) 14:05, 30 November 2011 (UTC)

Your article has been moved to AfC space[edit]

Hi! I would like to inform you that the Articles for Creation submission which was previously located here: User:Brews ohare/Wikipedia: Formal organization has been moved to Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Wikipedia: Formal organization, this move was made automatically and doesn't affect your article, if you have any questions please ask on my talk page! Have a nice day. ArticlesForCreationBot (talk) 15:10, 9 December 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Wikipedia: Formal organization[edit]

Hello Brews ohare, I came across Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/Wikipedia: Formal organization. Did you intend to have this moved to mainspace, or did you want it in Wikipedia space? Best, Alpha_Quadrant (talk) 22:22, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Hi Alpha Quadrant: I don't know how to answer that. Got some advice? Brews ohare (talk) 22:54, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Heh, I marked that essay under being reviewed since we have some new and unexperienced reviewers. I checked the essay and it looks not bad (except the case that there is a unneeded whitespace in the title and the essay notice box at the top is missing). I'm willing to move it - but OTOH I'm really not sure, if we need another essay - especially on our organization structure. Maybe the essay should be merged into a mainspace article like Community of Wikipedia, Wikipedia, or any other article I might not notice. I won't do anything with the article, if you say move it, i will move it; if you say "decline it" I will decline it - I will wait on your response ;) mabdul 14:58, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
Hi Mabdul:
I think the right place for this article is as a part of Wikipedia. If you agree, the nutshell banner should be removed, and that text made part of the first paragraph. I have edited the article accordingly. Hope you will transfer it. Brews ohare (talk) 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Your submission at Articles for creation[edit]

Crystal Clear action edit add.png
Wikipedia:Formal organization, which you submitted to Articles for creation, has been created.
  • The article has been assessed as C-Class, which is recorded on the article's [[Talk:Wikipedia:Formal organization|talk page]]. You may like to take a look at the grading scheme to see how you can improve the article.
  • You are more than welcome to continue making quality contributions to Wikipedia. Note that because you are a logged-in user, you can create articles yourself, and don't have to post a request. However, you are more than welcome to continue submitting work to Articles for Creation.
  • If you have any questions, you are welcome to ask at the Help desk or on the reviewer's talk page
  • If you would like to help us improve this process, please consider leaving us some feedback.

Thank you for helping improve Wikipedia!

Kevin Rutherford (talk) 18:17, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Graphic design[edit]

Hi Brews! I am here to compliment you on your spectacular graphics, and to ask advice.

I am a very visual person and I think as much in diagrams as in words, but on Wikipedia I am handicapped by being completely illiterate in the area of digital graphics. I am an aeronautical engineer and I run Microsoft Windows 7 on my PC. Can you suggest how I might get into graphics with a view to ultimately being able to produce diagrams of the kind I see on your User page? Many thanks for any advice. I will watch your Talk page for your reply. Dolphin (t) 05:38, 14 January 2012 (UTC)

Hi Dolphin: My approach to graphics is not very sophisticated. I use Microsoft Excel to draw the pictures. The early versions like '97 aren't good, but the '03 and later versions have good control over color and line widths.
Once the picture is drawn, I copy it and paste it into Microsoft Paint as a .PNG file. I save that file in My Pictures folder. Then I can find it using the UPLOAD FILE link on the Wikimedia Commons and follow the directions there.
I takes a while to get the hang of the various features of Excel. Mainly I use the "Shapes" & "Text Box" icons and the various menus for adding color, adjusting linewidth and so forth. You can use Ctrl & Shift simultaneously to select multiple items and the "Group" feature to make them behave as one unit to move them around together. The right mouse button lets you move things to the front or back, so you can assemble layers of items.
Hope you have fun with this. Brews ohare (talk) 07:15, 14 January 2012 (UTC)
Thanks Brews! That sounds like a great challenge so I am off to have a go right now. Dolphin (t) 11:33, 14 January 2012 (UTC)

Sour grapes at WP:Talk:Notability[edit]

Brews, It is clear that your are passionate about this notability issue. This statement says it all: Well, its great to see two old "nemeses" reach agreement. But about what exactly? Rather than consider the possibility that notability could be established by various means, the agreement is that notability is "what people talk about" and is quite separate from "importance". Well folks, IMO that position really just means that the status quo is so important to you all that any nonsense can be resorted to in its support. Perhaps fortunately, WP is replete with articles that do not satisfy the present notability requirements. So perhaps the de facto situation on WP is wiser than the de jure version, eh? But it comes off as a bit of sour grapes. You asked a question on a talk page and three experienced editors took their time to answer your question as they see practice in WP. The fact that you have some fundamental disagreement with WP practice is perfectly OK (I have a shopping list of such disagreement). But it is not OK to chastise individual editors for their views, especially when they are trying to explain them and help someone else understand. There are avenues for changing policies and guidelines in WP, but they aren't easy because our practice has 11 years of success behind it. The three of us that responded to your question aren't in your way, its an entire community of 136,000 active editors that you must convince. However those discussions occur, you've got to respect and understand other members of the community positions, just like we will respect and try to understand yours. Acceptance of one or the other position is above and beyond that. --Mike Cline (talk) 16:20, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Mike: I do respect the participants (though not their positions) and consider it a privilege to engage in such discussions. I do not think, however, that the examples I brought forward were carefully considered, and also am of the opinion that you three express a united view neither well formed nor based upon an awareness of what is needed. Rather, it is a simple repetition of the existing policy as a sacred text without examination of its purposes and effect.
Thanks for engaging here. Brews ohare (talk) 16:34, 13 February 2012 (UTC)

Forum shopping[edit]

Please be aware that much of your talk page actions of the last several days would fall under the undesirable behavior as forum shopping, seemingly based on the simple movement of WP:Formal organization from main space to Wikipedia space; from there you took it to WT:NOR ([1]) (and an attempt to delete United States Attorney [2]), to WT:N ([3]) to creating your own notability guideline User:Brews ohare/WP:Notability (Descriptive articles), and now back again to WT:NOR ([4]).

This is a classic definition of forum shopping because you are not getting the answers you want for a specific case. This type of behavior is not appropriate and if you continue to engage in it, you may be blocked from editing.

On the specific issue, several editors including myself have tried to explain what the consensus is, and - ultimately back to the original point - why the Formal Organization article was moved out of mainspace. You need to recognize that the consensus weighs towards keeping this in Wikipedia space. Several pieces of advice for potentially bringing this article or something like it into mainspace have been given and you should how you could write such an article knowing this advice. --MASEM (t) 20:59, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Masem:You totally mischaracterize my discussions in your lead paragraph, trying to make my discussion of various policies part of a ridiculous lobbying activity. I frankly cannot fathom where you got these ideas. In addition, you have completely ignored my stated intentions and falsely claim that I tried to have United States Attorney deleted. Please notice that I made comments on its Talk page and elsewhere that flatly contradict your statements.
I don't give a hoot what happens to WP:Formal organization. I regard this article as a gift of mine to WP to help it explain itself, an article it needs and no-one was interested in writing, and WP can use it to explain its organization or trash it as WP sees fit. I am not going to lobby for its introduction to mainspace.
My purpose in writing on WP:Primary, WP:NOR and WP:Notability is to make these guidelines make sense. Sometimes I have used WP:Formal organization as an example to illustrate where I think these policies need revision.
That is the only reason I have brought this article up.
I am really disappointed that you should search for some strange motive in my actions. I am even more disturbed that you should overture a violation of WP conduct. That is really a nasty step.
If you feel that discussion of possible revisions of WP policies is so distasteful that you must resist reform not on the merits but by actions like you have begun here, that is indeed sad. An administrator like yourself should be among those anxious to see the discussion of policies vigorously pursued to help WP evolve.
Brews ohare (talk) 21:12, 15 February 2012 (UTC)
But it clearly follows the typical pattern of forum shopping. Each step can been seen trying to get the answer you want to bring back the Formal Organization back to mainspace, by first challenging the primary sourcing policy, to challenging exceptions to notability, to trying to create your own notability guideline, to challenging what the definition of primary/secondary sources are. You've abandoned the previous discussions in moving to the next one.
Mind you, you may not be doing this intentionally, and that's why I wrote this as a caution and not an ultimatum. But the reason I wrote it is that, say, if you start another discussion from the current WT:OR one about what are primary sources on yet another talk page, you will likely see yourself blocked for this.
Note that there's a difference between "making sure the guidelines make sense" and "changing the guidelines". The former is completely acceptable, but that's not what you're doing. You're challenging the guidelines - which is fine, we are to be open to new ideas - but doing it in a manner that begs "I want it this way", and seemingly when you get a rejection, take it elsewhere. Again, you may be doing it unintentionally or without realizing that forum shopping is discouraged, which is understandable, but you are now aware this is not a good practice to do. The better way to try to gain consensus on what you are doing is to create a centralized discussion and notify appropriate talk pages to bring discussion there. But you should figure out and spell out what exactly you want to change or add on specific pages, instead of just challenging "this guideline is a problem" which is what your current approach is doing. --MASEM (t) 21:33, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Backoff - both of you[edit]

Unfortunately I didn't get this in before Masem's last edit but it still applies. Masem, you raised the point civily, you need not further elaborate or respond. Brews, a member of the community perceived you were forum shopping. Only you can decide whether you were or not, I don't care, but perceptions can sometimes be warning signs to be considered. But aggressively defending yourself as you did isn't necessary either. Its actual behavior that counts here. Neither of you need respond to this other than continue productively editing the encyclopedia. --Mike Cline (talk) 21:38, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Mike: Thanks for your comment. My reaction is strong because threats of misconduct are both alarming and misplaced, and I have been subject in the past to arbitrary actions taken on slight pretext.
I will not comment further upon policy at this time. Of course, policy should be vigorously examined, but acts of intimidation like this suppress discussion. Brews ohare (talk) 21:49, 15 February 2012 (UTC)


I have included these notes for use in the event of some sudden administrative action.

My attempts at policy modification began on WP:NOR with an RfC that led to the suggestion that Notability was the issue. Discussion on Notability led to Masem's introduction of sub-guidelines, something whose existence I was unaware of, and as a result I proposed to draft a guideline myself. That can be found among my user pages. Discussion on that Talk page led Blueboar to suggest a problem existed with primary sources. At that point I went to the Talk page there to bring up that issue, and informed Blueboar that I had done so. Discussion there proceeded normally, and I discovered following comments by Paul Siebert that the distinction between primary and secondary sources was really important only to the policy WP:Notability, bringing me back to that policy. This evolution of discussion was just too much for Masem, who then decided to interrupt these actions of mine. Ignoring WP policy Assume good faith, Masem challenged my explicitly stated reasons for a change in policy, suggesting my actions were not genuine, but stemmed from desire to move WP:Formal organization to mainspace. His 'clairvoyance' reclassified my actions as misconduct, including as misconduct even my creation of a User page. The basis for his insight into my motives is a so-called pattern in my activities explicable in Masem's mind not as a natural progression of discussion, but more probably explained as Forum shopping that required his administrative intervention. My explicitly stated reasons for why I thought policy changes were needed were classified as subterfuge, not policy deficiency. In a rather unrelated accusation intended to buttress his view that I was disruptive, Masem further alleged that I had attempted deletion of United States Attorney, in flat contradiction to my own remarks on its Talk page and, of course, despite there being no formal request for deletion. Administrator Masem's interruption apparently was encouraged by editor Fifelfoo's substantial contribution that this discussion of policy was "silly and needs to stop", a view bandwagoned later by editor Djathinkimacowboy.

It is apparent that any further attempt to clarify these policies will be taken as disruptive, so the matter must be dropped. All of my interactions have been on Talk pages or in my own user space, arenas nominally reserved for open discussion, ostensibly intended for civil exchanges of viewpoint, free from administrative intimidation. Brews ohare (talk) 22:26, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

Re: Calgary-Fish Creek question[edit]

Brews, Re Calgary-Fish Creek. The WP community suffers from a syndrome that is common in large collaborative enterprises—we unintentionally use a lot of ambiguous language. The language is ambiguous—open to or having several possible meanings or interpretations; equivoca—because we have co-opted terminology from everyday language and repurposed it to the needs of WP. Primary and secondary sources are a good example of that. Notability is the classic example. In the case of sources, if you are an historian, you know exactly what is considered a primary source in your discipline—old newspaper accounts, interviews, diaries, journals, etc. In the sciences, it’s different. Primary sources are the raw data, the experiments, individual observations, hypothesizes etc. In every academic discipline, what is considered a primary source is different. Outside academia or research type disciplines, primary-secondary sources have little meaning. Unfortunately WP (an encyclopedia—a tertiary source) lumps all this together with two simple labels—primary and secondary. So when we begin to apply these ideas of notability which depends on the use of secondary sources independent of the topic, we sometimes create confusion—what sources are primary and what sources are secondary, what sources are independent? For articles like Calgary-Fish Creek the distinction isn’t all that clear. And within WP, in fact I believe that many primary sources in one context, can indeed be secondary in another context.

So if we look at Calgary-Fish Creek from a notability standpoint, we can say this. 1) it is notable because there is a presumption that political sub-divisions have been discussed in secondary sources independent of the topic. 2) it has not been nominated for deletion (CSD, PROD, or AfD). 3) if it had been nominated, is was not deleted. If we look at the sources in the article, I would consider all the Alberta Heritage Foundation sources to be secondary and independent of the topic. Although some of the Elections Alberta are secondary, they might not be considered independent of the topic but I think they are. However, the first source: "E 4.1". Statutes of the Province of Alberta. Government of Alberta. 2003. p. 10. would be considered secondary and independent of the topic in the WP context. Why would I say that? Well it compiles a lot of data from other primary sources—legislative hearings, surveys, etc. It is independent of Calgary-Fish Creek, in other words, Calgary-Fish Creek as a political sub-division did not create or significantly influence the contents of the source. Does this seem confusing? Indeed it is when one thinks about these terms in contexts outside the realm of WP. Here’s where I think the confusion arises. There are really only two types of articles where the secondary sources might not be independent of the topic—people and enterprises—governments, companies and corporations, associations, international associations, non-profits, etc. Both people and enterprises can publish or influence published information about themselves in secondary sources. Battles, histories, biology, science, geology, geography, social and cultural stuff etc. type articles don’t publish or influence any sources, thus all sources on the topic are inherently independent of the topic. No source on the Anna’s Hummingbird could be considered not independent of the topic. So in the case of Calgary-Fish Creek, a political sub-division (in this case an electoral district), is it an enterprise or a description of geography, much like a mountain peak, a lake or a river. I suspect is much more geography than an enterprise. In fact I can’t even find anything that describes Calgary-Fish Creek as an enterprise.

So where does that leave us? Well first, WP’s inclusion criteria are actually pretty liberal and straightforward. However, it is only so if you leave your notion of primary and secondary sources that you carry from the outside world at the door. In WP, the distinction between them is purely contextual. You also have to accept that many classes of articles carry a presumption of notability if the topic is a member of the class (people and enterprises are the glaring exception here). Geography is one of those classes. If a named mountain exists, it is presumed notable—discussed in secondary sources—otherwise it wouldn’t exist as a named mountain.

I don’t know if this helps, but it was fun thinking about it. --Mike Cline (talk) 15:54, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Mike: Thanks for your answer, which shows you've thought about the topic.
Although you have concluded that you have constructed a rationale for Calgary-Fish Creek being notable based upon WP's usage, I personally find it far too complicated to be reassuring. Any such argument for notability on WP would not get past first base if there were a few editors that wanted this article off the encyclopedia on the grounds that it wasn't notable. The discussion of notability either would never end, or end with the defender in AN/I for tendentious editing.
One of the problems on WP is these arguments between editors, which could be settled if things like "notability" were clear-cut on WP, regardless of what definition that was, regardless of its relation to usage anywhere else. Then any ass could see if an article were notable or not, and argument wouldn't happen.
Instead, the actual de facto test of notability is whether the article has survived on WP, either after being challenged, or because it never got anybody interested enough to challenge it. In other words, there is no easy definition of "notability" on WP, whatever the policy claims, and it is only by experiment that one finds if an article has this quality, and that is an attribute that may be withdrawn at any time, given an adroit campaign to remove it.
It may be there is no way to resolve these useless quarrels on WP, but clear policy would be one way. Perhaps the policy should be rewritten until it proves by experiment with the policy to (i) be clear enough that argument is greatly reduced, and (ii) serves as a filter for desirable vs. undesirable articles. At present, on WP unending debate about policy changes occurs, based upon speculation & hypotheticals about what some particular change might cause to happen. These debates usually prevent substantial evolution of the policies. Policies are inflexible on this account, and fruitless debate denies WP one mechanism to evolve to fit the demands upon it. Construction of means to adapt policy is broken.
Maybe we need a provision on WP that allows the evolution of policy by experiment: actually collect evidence on the effect of policy changes, in place of rhetoric?
In fact, it might be possible to look at articles presently on WP and try to classify them regarding notability issues to see what the de facto notability situation is? One could even elect to test the existing articles for notability by challenging their notability and seeing what arguments come up? Doubtless that would be considered a "disruption" of WP unless there were some support for such an effort. Brews ohare (talk) 16:39, 26 February 2012 (UTC)
Brews, have you ever looked at WP:Outcomes? Seems like that's what you are talking about above. --Mike Cline (talk) 16:55, 26 February 2012 (UTC)
Mike: I wasn't aware of this page; I'll take a look at it. Thanks. Brews ohare (talk) 17:08, 26 February 2012 (UTC)
Mike: It appears that WP:Outcomes is an unofficial guide as to what is notable and what is not. I'd say that Calgary-Fish Creek doesn't fit into any of the listed categories. Neither do the various descriptions of official offices, or laws on certain subjects. It seems likely that the list at WP:Outcomes could be expanded significantly.
Also, as an unofficial document, should a challenge come up and this page be cited as supporting retention, I suspect it will not be accepted as definitive over the challengers claims that the article should be deleted as not notable.
Do you agree with my notion of the content of this page? Brews ohare (talk) 00:24, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

AN/I notice[edit]

Hello. This message is being sent to inform you that there is currently a discussion at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents regarding an issue with which you may have been involved. Thank you.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 21:24, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

Copy and paste move[edit]

Hi, and thank you for your contributions to Wikipedia. It appears that you recently tried to give User talk:Brews ohare/sandbox a different title by copying its content and pasting either the same content, or an edited version of it, into Wikipedia talk:Avoiding talk-page disruption. This is known as a "cut and paste move", and it is undesirable because it splits the page history, which is needed for attribution and various other purposes. Instead, the software used by Wikipedia has a feature that allows pages to be moved to a new title together with their edit history.

In most cases, once your account is four days old and has ten edits, you should be able to move an article yourself using the "Move" tab at the top of the page. This both preserves the page history intact and automatically creates a redirect from the old title to the new. If you cannot perform a particular page move yourself this way (e.g. because a page already exists at the target title), please follow the instructions at requested moves to have it moved by someone else. Also, if there are any other pages that you moved by copying and pasting, even if it was a long time ago, please list them at Wikipedia:Cut and paste move repair holding pen. Thank you. JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 18:16, 16 March 2012 (UTC)

Note about proposed guideline[edit]

Despite how inappropriate I think "Comment 8" was, I wanted to point out that it actually is pretty unlikely that this will be promoted to a guideline. Behavioral guidelines are very limited to general statements like assuming good fiath, and a page that suggests a manner of response on a talk page in any more specific terms than that is something the community will consider too restrictive for an actual guideline (since guidelines do have "power" for lack of a better word). All pages with content comparable to yours are thus far essays, and there are a lot of them -- including quite a few long-standing and oft-linked essays that probably have much more of a chance at being promoted, and yet still, will never be. Knowing that, I see it as excessively optimistic to write an original page like this one and immediately propose that it become a guideline. I think you might consider settling for an essay, which as a bonus, will probably be less likely to garner the kind of negative attention you're getting now. Equazcion (talk) 17:42, 22 Mar 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for the observations. I'd hoped for a wider interest in this topic, but aside from yourself and Diego I've had only the attention of Blackburne, who is opposed to the matter because it impacts his standard modus operandi of citing a policy and responding to requests for clarification with "Go read the policy". Further requests for clarification result in AN/I actions, that sometimes prove successful. I was interested to see how completely frank Blackburne is about his approach to such matters.
I have little knowledge of how WP works, but I do understand that policies and guidelines are nearly impossible to introduce or change, with discussion of proposals usually degenerating into completely irrelevant and inconsequential babble. If there is no further interest in this proposal as a guideline, I guess an essay will be all that is left. Brews ohare (talk) 17:55, 22 March 2012 (UTC)

Dispute resolution survey[edit]

Peace dove.svg

Dispute Resolution – Survey Invite

Hello Brews ohare. I am currently conducting a study on the dispute resolution processes on the English Wikipedia, in the hope that the results will help improve these processes in the future. Whether you have used dispute resolution a little or a lot, now we need to know about your experience. The survey takes around five minutes, and the information you provide will not be shared with third parties other than to assist in analyzing the results of the survey. No personally identifiable information will be released.

Please click HERE to participate.
Many thanks in advance for your comments and thoughts.

You are receiving this invitation because you have had some activity in dispute resolution over the past year. For more information, please see the associated research page. Steven Zhang DR goes to Wikimania! 11:43, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

Reference formatting style[edit]

John, where did you get your unique style of formatting references? I haven't encountered anything like it from other editors in all my years at WP, and I find it very confusing to see major source-level breaks that look like paragraph breaks, inside references. Do you think you could move to a more normal style, for better compatibility with collaborators? Dicklyon (talk) 15:47, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

I just use the template {{cite book}}. I separate the citation from the text for ease in editing. The better way is to use {{reflist |refs = }} format that places all the reference info in its own section at the bottom of the page. Of course there are other approaches like the Harvard reference system, but I haven't used that enough to make it second nature. Brews ohare (talk) 15:52, 14 April 2012 (UTC)
It's the way you "separate the citation from the text" that idiosyncratic. Nobody does that. As for putting all the refs at the end, I've never seen that, either. I bet that would be harder to maintain; you'd have to edit two sections just to add a ref. Dicklyon (talk) 15:57, 14 April 2012 (UTC)
Better as in how? The vast majority of articles use inline references as it works and is far easier to maintain. If you prefer it that's fine but like other formatting changes you should never change the formatting or style of existing references based on your personal preference, per WP:CITEVAR. --JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 16:23, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

Blackburne: It's nice of you to undertake the patrol duties to enforce what you like, but in this case the references were all added and formatted by myself. So, in fact, you contravened the very principle you tried to enforce. Brews ohare (talk) 21:47, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

Your idea of what is easier to maintain is contrary to my own: the text is kept clean and easier to maintain with the {{reflist |refs= }} format that keeps ref info out of the text, and so are the references themselves. The main complication of this approach is use of named references <ref name =ThisRef></ref>instead of simply <ref></ref>. Another advantage of this system is that you can group footnotes in categories using, for example, <ref name=ThisRef group=Note></ref> and {{reflist|group=Note|refs= }}. Brews ohare (talk) 22:00, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

I agree. It is also my preferred style. A few examples: Psilocybin, a featured article uses this style. Also Adolf Hitler. I borrowed this style and adopted it for my articles. See Aspioti-ELKA, Temple of Artemis (Corfu) etc. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 22:13, 14 April 2012 (UTC)
Yes, that's your opinion and preferences, and based on how they are used in 99% (I estimate) of articles your preferences are shared by few. What I like has nothing to do with it: you shouldn't change the format of references or anything, per WP:Stability, simply to suit your own preferences.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 22:16, 14 April 2012 (UTC)
It is undeniable that the format Brews and I use makes editing much easier by eliminating the bulk of the citation from the main article corpus. It may well be that few people know about the advantages of this format or are even unaware of it. For instance I think that the article of Adolf Hitler was converted to the new format relatively recently. You can ask user:Diannaa about it. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 22:23, 14 April 2012 (UTC)
If that were really so then I think it would be much more prevalent in articles, as well as recommended or even mandated in the formatting guidelines, as has happened with many other things (straight vs. curly quotes, references before or after punctuation). But the guidelines are clear: there are many ways to do references, none is better, and editors should not change the style from one to another without some reason other than their personal preferences.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 22:43, 14 April 2012 (UTC)
I think that the reason exists but this is not the place to debate the merits of this method or of the alternatives. However I agree that any massive change, even for the better, should be a matter of consensus between editors and it should not be imposed unilaterally. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 23:40, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

I'm not sure what you guys are going on about. There's nothing in the Psilocybin article that resembles the ref source spacing style that I was talking about. I believe this "style" is unique to Brews. As to whether you group refs at the end or not, that's an entirely different matter, distracting from my point. Dicklyon (talk) 00:12, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

To be truthful I did not check your comments in particular, but rather Brews' explanations of the code he used. That's where I based my reply on, not your comments. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 00:57, 15 April 2012 (UTC)
What you are talking about, Dick, is simply whether one writes a reference in line as <ref>
{{cite book | blah |blah |blah}}
</ref> or writes it <ref>
{{cite book
|blah }}
Why do you care?
What Blackburne is "going on" about is that he reverted my choice of formatting references without realizing they were mine to make, on the pretext of moral superiority, and now wants to trumpet his superiority, even though based upon his personal misappraisal of the situation. Brews ohare (talk) 00:59, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

─────────────────────────No, in your attempt to show it, you're not displaying how it looks in the source, where the reference text is floating, away from the tags, looking like a paragraph. It makes the visual organization of the source text very unusual and confusing. More like this:

The motion of an object can be considered to be a signal, and can be monitored by various sensors to provide electrical signals.<ref name= Lu>

For an example from robotics, see K Nishio and T Yasuda (2011). "Analog-digital circuit for motion detection based on vertebrate retina and its application to mobile robot". In Bao-Liang Lu, Liqing Zhang, James Kwok (ed.). Neural Information Processing: 18th International Conference, Iconip 2011, Shanghai,china, November 13-17, 2011. Springer. pp. 506 ff. ISBN 3642249647.CS1 maint: multiple names: editors list (link)

</ref>For example, [[radar]] can provide an electromagnetic signal for following aircraft motion.

Although, in the recent article in question, you didn't put that first empty line after <ref> as you usually do; just the lower one before </ref> Dicklyon (talk) 02:56, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

I undid your change based on policy, cited and explained above. As for "moral superiority" and "trumpet his superiority" you perhaps need to read another policy, WP:NPA and reconsider your comments.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 01:16, 15 April 2012 (UTC)
John, you probably missed that I had just changed one ref format before Brews changed it back. I was trying to illustrate a good way to do it. I remain unclear on whether it's OK for an editor to maintain a completely idiosyncratic style of his own. This has bugged me about him for years (since 2009), but never before rose to the top of my list of reasons to change or revert his contributions. So that's progress, isn't it? Dicklyon (talk) 02:56, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

"*Comments" subheadings[edit]

Please stop inserting these between comments. They are unnecessary, interfere with the proper threaded conversation, are not normally used in talk page conversations and have been removed by two editors so we already have a third opinion that they are not needed. I would also note that this edit re-added them without explanation and marked the edit as minor. Contentious edits should always be explained and never marked as minor. Your last edit summary, re-adding them because you were "the one originiting [sic] this discussion" is irrelevant as no-one owns the discussion or the talk page, per WP:OWN.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 02:55, 22 April 2012 (UTC)

Blackburne: The comment headers separate comments by different individuals with their back-and-forths, which helps me keep track of who says what. You don't like it. So what? I requested the feedback, and it helps me. It doesn't interfere with anyone else (maybe you excepted). So what are you up to here? I'm sure you love to enforce your own ideas about what is "proper procedure" but there is no hard and fast on this matter. Your citation of WP:OWN is another example of your stretching policies to suit yourself. Brews ohare (talk) 05:39, 22 April 2012 (UTC)

Arbitration request for clarification[edit]

I have raised the recent discussions concerning you at Wavelength and its talk page here


--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 00:17, 16 May 2012 (UTC)


Looking at arbitration pages, I think it might be a good idea if you switch to editing less well developed areas of Physics, for example Molecular Physics. What do you think? Thanks, My very best wishes (talk) 14:25, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

You didn't say why you think it is a good idea. Is it a good idea because it might cause less Talk-page discussion? In your opinion, is avoiding Talk-page discussion a good thing for WP, or a good thing for myself personally? In your opinion, am I unusual among contributors in this regard, and if so, why is that so? Please elaborate upon these themes. And, of course, why is it that well developed areas of physics should be a less suitable arena than others? I assume well developed refers to topics that have WP articles with long histories, not topics that are well developed from the viewpoint of the subject of physics itself. Perhaps the idea is that articles with a long past on WP are more likely to have combative editors defending them in their present form? Brews ohare (talk) 15:51, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
Brews, the user above just made a suggestion according to his beliefs. Your reply, although clear and well-made, requires a lot of effort in the editor's part to formulate new arguments and a counter-reply. This may or may not happen but it is irrelevant anyway. IMO, what the user above was trying to tell you is that, given your history with the usual crowd, you should make a conscious decision to avoid topics frequented by a lot of argumentative editors. Regardless of the merit of your arguments you have to understand that there is a group of editors which at best will view your contributions with suspicion and at worst will oppose you just because of the bad history in other disputes. Once you understand the hidden context and social dimension, as opposed to the strictly scientific one, of these exchanges you may make the right editing decisions which are best encapsulated by the verb "to avoid". So although your reply is principled and succinct, it is also useless. Under the circumstances forget about methods of intelligent discourse and dialectic and just avoid. These are the facts on the ground. Having said that, I think that even if you went to less frequented articles some of the usually opposing group may follow you there and start brand new conflicts. Don't forget the problems with the Idée fixe article which has nothing to do with physics. In simpler terms you are a marked editor. Until the system fairly deals with the problem of this new underclass of editors there is very little anyone here can do to help you. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 16:32, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
  • The questions by Brews are perfectly fine. I think there are several reasons. First, some people feel attached to articles they edited a lot and therefore very apprehensive when anyone (like you) comes to make changes. Second, it is generally more difficult to improve well developed pages. One can always make an argument that the page is already in a good condition and therefore does not need any changes. Third, you can work much more efficiently (make more good service for the project) by improving something that is in a really poor condition. Finally, it might be a good idea to escape from contributors whith whom you have difficult relations by moving in another area. If they follow you there, that would be interpreted not in their favor. Now, speaking about the area of Molecular physics, this is something closer to my interests, so I might be able to occasionally help. My very best wishes (talk) 16:46, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
  • Well made points, but I don't think there are any Physics articles which are so well developed that they don't need anything and I also don't think that anyone who follows Brews around will be sanctioned in any way since Brews is a marked editor. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 17:04, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
About the suggesion by Δρ.Κ, I think this "avoiding" is best done after experiencing some negative feedback. So, you don't shy away frome editing somewhere, but when facing opposition, you take a look at whether that opposition is constructive critisism allowing you to work in collaboration with others, or whether it is opposition because they don't want your input in that article at all, no matter what arguments you put forward.
E.g. I see that Brews is editing the Fourier transform article, and things seem to go well there. When he receives negative feedback there, then that's constructive feedback, not based on WP:OWN. But exactly the same effort in another article could end in disaster, if Brews were to intepret feedback based on WP:OWN feelings or on negative attitudes toward him editing there, as something he can argue with.
And when you are editing with editors who have a history of opposing on WP:OWN feelings, you have to make sure that your first edits and proposals are as good as possible, so that when you are opposed and you post an RFC to deal with that opposition, you are likely to get support. Otherwise, what happens is that the failure to get support in that first RFC and subsequent modifications, more opposition due to WP:OWN and then yet another RFC to deal with WP:OWN again, will be used against you. The opponents can complain about all those RFCs, failing to drop the stick etc. etc.
But to get it (almost) right the first time can require you to make larger edits, as you then have more room to deal with any problems. It is often a lot more difficult to put in a few sentences to explain something better than to write a whole new paragraph. So, by putting aside any fears of stepping on the toes of editors with WP:OWN issues, you can avoid problems later. Count Iblis (talk) 17:26, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
Although I agree that negative feedback is a necessary precondition for avoiding further contact, and I can see the point of your constructive, eloquent and creative proposals of engagement, I think that in practice any action by Brews by RFC or any other means of dispute resolution will degenerate into the usual round of threats and AE enforcement requests. Look at the comments at the current AE. If Brews doesn't get banned in this one by some sort of miracle, in the next one he will not be that lucky. In my opinion you are trying to optimise a marginally stable system. Although in theory you may be correct, any action other than the one confined to a very limited stability domain, will perturb the system and cause instability. In other words Brews is walking on a perpetual minefield. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 17:44, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
Actually, I have three simple suggestions for Brews: (a) do not edit for a long while any articles where you had confrontations in the past, (b) when looking for new edits, find something that is obviously missing in the article or obviously wrong for anyone familiar with the subject and fix it; (c) if there is a dispute that can not be quickly resolved by talking, just drop the issue and edit something else. My very best wishes (talk) 18:04, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
I think your proposals agree with my suggestions. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 18:25, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
If he follows this advice, he suppose to be fine. Unfortunately, I know from my own experience in another area that (a) and (c) are difficult to follow. But he has no choice. My very best wishes (talk) 18:50, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
I agree. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 18:53, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

──────────────────── Thank you all for your appraisal. I am indeed walking in a minefield, and one would hope that Admins could see that many of these disruptions are simple vendetta or pique, unrelated to the merits. Unfortunately, Admins do not take content into account (in principle, anyway) and so they are faced with trying to decide if a succession of comments are really about content (which they have no idea about) or are just argument with no purpose.

For example, in the present case the proposed text is simply a quote from one of several sources that say the same thing, and yet Admins are reluctant to take this at face value and evaluate the erroneous counter claims of critics. Instead, they have one hand tied behind their backs, and can only assess the back and forth on the basis that I have been sanctioned in the past, and so am disreputable on the face of it. If I weren't a disreputable editor, their problem remains: they would simply have to count how many support me and how many opposed, and go with the majority. That is a problem that WP has yet to formulate in a practical fashion to create a good environment on WP. Brews ohare (talk) 19:59, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

  • Forget about Admins. They can not help you, as you apparently realize yourself. You must be able to sort out all your problems with other users without help of Admins. If you follow points (a-c) outlined above, you might succeed. If not, you are going to be banned. My very best wishes (talk) 20:35, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

I think b) and c) are good points, but a) is more difficult, and given the input from the Arbitrators on the clarification page, less relevant now. The situation for Brews today is not similar to when the topic ban was lifted the last time, because at that time, there were still discretionary sanctions. Brews actually ended up being banned again from physics after an incident on one of the centrifugal force pages. There a figure he wanted to include was argued to be OR, and he received a warning from an Admin about being site banned unless he stopped poutting OR edits in articles. But there was nothing OR about that figure, but then an univolved Admin would nt be able to see this, they would tend to react to an OR warming by an editor.

This issue went to AN/I and there it was found that the OR arming was out of place and that the Admin was wrong to have warmed Brews. However, because the discetionary sanctions allowed editors to ask for AE on any grounds, this issue then went to AE, and there the fact that Brews ended up being doscussed at AN/I contributed to the topic ban being re-imposed, never mind that Brews was right in that dispute.

But this dynamics is not at play now, most Arbs have said on the clarification page that they are against making a ruling by motion, Elen of the Roads suggests that in case of problems the proper venue is AN/I, other Arbs are saying that if this ends up at Arbitration again, a case would have to be presented first.

This means that Brews can edit like any other editor, but he has to make sure that whenever he posts an RFC, or persues dispute resolution, he is very sure that this process leads to an outcome that helps his case and settles he problem. It is then better to make others post RFCs or persue some of the other mechanisms involving community input. E.g. in case of the Idee Fixe article, it was Blackburne who put the article on PROD and then on AFD. But the article was kept. Now, if Brews were to create more such articles that Blackburne doesn't like, but in most of these cases the articles are kept, then that will be held against Blackburne in any future ArbCom case.

So, while Brews has to make sure he doesn't post RFC after RFC to deal with opposition, he should be able to edit like any other editor. If you really have to post an RFC (it's better to avoid that), stick to the advice given by Arb SilkTork, i.e. if you don't get the community support you are seeking, don't raise that issue again for one year. When sticking to this rule, you would of course rather want to get community support, which means that you have to focus on a proposal that uninvolved editors find appealing. This may mean forgetting about any previous proposals you made to take into account the feelings of the involved editors there. Count Iblis (talk) 21:58, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

I do not really disagree with anything here, except that any future arbitration case (and possibly even AN) will result in the ban for Brews, exactly as Helen said. Yes, creating new articles is a good idea (but not to make any future cases), and not posting any RFC is also good idea. My very best wishes (talk) 22:44, 26 May 2012 (UTC)
I agree with many, if not all the points made by all the editors above, the former statement made just to be on the safe side. :) Thank you Brews, thank you all for a great discussion. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 23:25, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

Points (a)-(c)[edit]

  • (a) do not edit for a long while any articles where you had confrontations in the past,
  • (b) when looking for new edits, find something that is obviously missing in the article or obviously wrong for anyone familiar with the subject and fix it;
  • (c) if there is a dispute that can not be quickly resolved by talking, just drop the issue and edit something else.

Evidently, these items lessen the chances of confrontation. Of course, that doesn't mean the chances are zero. As one example, Dicklyon and I seldom agree about what is an "obvious" omission. Dicklyon will say it is "bloat" to add the topic, and make claims the topic is "idiosyncratic", and Blackburne will say my objections to Dick are an example of an "obvious" tendency of mine toward confrontation, a matter that can best be dealt with by taking me to AN/I.

However, besides all this nonsense, there is the problem for WP that has yet to be resolved: how are conduct disputes that are converted to fake conduct disputes to be resolved by Admins?

Of course, Admins should stay out of content disputes, as they do now. So the first thing WP needs is a clear-cut method for determining when a conduct issue is in reality just a way to end discussion, and at bottom is really a content dispute. If a matter actually can be identified as a content dispute in disguise, then it should go back to the Talk page, and if it takes three or four years to resolve, that is just too bad. See Talk:Monty Hall problem for an example of interminable Talk page discussion that has been through mediation and everything else and is still at square one. Brews ohare (talk) 23:53, 26 May 2012 (UTC)

You make some good points. Monty Hall however AFAIK although a longterm dispute has not been focused on the conduct of a single editor. In your case you have more or less been assigned a target mark on your back and thus the focus of almost any dispute you participate in, is you as an individual. This is the main problem. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 00:15, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
That is true: the editors on the Monty Hall problem have for the most part remained gentlemen and agree that differences are not a matter of character flaws but of substance. Unfortunately, not all editors are so generous and open. Brews ohare (talk) 00:21, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
It is encouraging to hear that in the case of the Monty Hall problem dispute editors have been able to behave in such exemplary fashion. Let's hope it spreads to other areas as well. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 00:31, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
An "obvious" omission is one that Dicklyon would agree with. But it is my impression that admins will sanction Brews simply for taking part in a very long content discussion claiming this to be WP:DE by him. So he must avoid any long unproductive discussions. My very best wishes (talk) 00:42, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
It depends on the dynamics of the discussion. If Brews is the only one arguing in support of a point then it is rather inevitable that he will be sanctioned. Hopefully if he has the support of more people this may change. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 01:44, 27 May 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────Dr K and My very best wishes, it is a commentary in itself that you both agree that regardless of the merits there is no doubt that any discussion I am involved in on any topic will lead to my being banned, if I am alone in advancing a view, even if the matter is clearly a content issue. (Content issues are formally stated in WP documentation to be outside the jurisdiction of Administrators.) That is a very frank and alarming evaluation of the Administrative process presently at work on WP. Although I would not agree with this evaluation entirely, my own opinion is that things do tilt in that direction. Brews ohare (talk) 03:19, 27 May 2012 (UTC)

The comments by Ellen of the Roads that it should be "possible to evidence the problematic behaviour without requiring a knowledge of post-doctoral physics" and AGK's remark that "This amendment has become absurdly specialized. We are not content experts, and (to my knowledge) no current arbitrator is qualified as a Physicist or similar." suggest that these Administrators find there is a distinction to be had between misconduct and an extended exchange of views about a subject, and they suggest some knowledge of content is necessary to make the distinction, at least sometimes. Brews ohare (talk) 03:46, 27 May 2012 (UTC)

I can't speak for Elen but her remark may indicate a decoupling of expertise and behaviour, so it could go against you in the sense that if your behaviour is maligned enough by a few editors you could easily be banned regardless of the merits of your arguments. AGK's remark is more along the lines of what you said about knowledge of content. As far as your statement that ...there is no doubt that any discussion I am involved in on any topic will lead to my being banned, if I am alone in advancing a view... I want to clarify that if indeed you were alone advancing a view against a group of editors who hold an opposing view you could get in trouble because of the appearance of going against consensus. Sometimes consensus is formed at the expense of the better arguments but that's the way the system works here so you should avoid the one-man- against-all-others situations. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 04:53, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
Dr K: How do you understand the notion of "consensus"? In my experience, "consensus" means the viewpoint of the majority of editors interested in a page, not a broad consensus: there are just not that many editors interested in topics outside of celebrities and politics. From your remarks, it appears that "consensus" means to you that it is more-or-less impossible to change a page's content where that page is watched by other editors with a shared view (either of the subject, or of the contributor), unless they agree with your change. Or, you might try to assemble a dissident group using an RfC (apparently frowned upon, or at least advised against, by you and My very best wishes, and seen as ineffective by Count Iblis) or, as Count Iblis has proposed, by appealing to a workgroup like Wikipedia:WikiProject Physics. The idea being to present a proposal and then fade into the woodwork and let things take whatever course they may.
It appears that there is no mechanism to change a "consensus" on WP. The notion that sources and common sense might change matters is fantasy, and will lead to AN/I (for most editors, not just myself). That seems to be your view, and it appears that I have to agree with you. "Consensus" is actually a tyranny of sorts, enforced by the notion that challenging consensus is misbehavior, despite the fact that it is really a content dispute. Do you see it as I imagine? Brews ohare (talk) 15:20, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
From this standpoint, it appears that Consensus can change, Wikipedia is not a democracy, Polling is not a substitute for discussion and Consensus not numbers are delusional. Brews ohare (talk) 15:53, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
Long ago, I wrote an essay Dealing with minority views. I wonder if you would be interested in commenting upon it? Brews ohare (talk) 15:29, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
Normally consensus always starts by being local, i.e. at the article talkpage. If the local consensus is not satisfactory, due to a limited number of editors or other factors, the wider community is engaged and an RFC or dispute resolution may follow. But unfortunately the consensus process in many of your cases is slightly different. There is an entrenched opposition to your ideas from a fixed group of editors. To complicate matters further this group of editors have similar qualifications to yours. So in terms of qualifications a similarly qualified group politically tramps a qualified loner. So politically you lose by the majority rule. Once you lose politically it is not difficult to lose also academically. Additionally a case can be made that if a disagreement exists among equally qualified editors where a group of these editors agree among themselves but disagree with a lone editor, then the lone editor may be either a genius who outsmarts the group, or simply that his proposed edits on the topic are not acceptable to a group of his peers. In the end the motivation of his peers does not matter. To the wider community it looks as if a panel of experts has rejected your expert opinion. Case closed. Only if an outside expert agrees with your opinion can things change. But this is a remote possibility because statistically it doesn't happen often. BTW I will check your essay and let you know. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 17:04, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
Dr K: I see that you are describing the way things are, unfortunate as that may be. I'd hope that a verbatim quote from a set of published sources with the accompanying citations would trump unsupported wild (rabid?) statements explicitly contrary to those sources, but evidently there is no such "consensus".
I would appreciate some comments from you upon the essay, and perhaps you might include some suggestions about how to handle RfC's, workgroup appeals, and the claims of tendentious editing in opposing consensus? Brews ohare (talk) 17:15, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
I will look at the essay and comment as soon as I have some time. But the latter part of your reply concerning RFC's, workgroup appeals etc. may be better handled by the Count. His ideas about strategic editing as he enunciated them at the AE and in the threads above may be useful in optimising an appeal-based response. However I view your existing problem more macroscopically than the Count does. Based on my comments above about entrenched opposition etc., I think that once you launch an appeal you just entered a one-way street of diminishing returns. At the end of that street, grimly looking at you is an AE. I can even predict more details but that is unnecessary. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 17:37, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
@Brews. You tell: it appears that "consensus" means that it is more-or-less impossible to change a page's content where that page is watched by other editors with a shared view, unless they agree with your change. Yes, exactly. The only alternative are editorial boards. This is Ochlocracy, Tyranny of the majority, and maybe even tyranny of paid advocacy. Consider that guy who hired a few people known as "wikipedia experts" to promote whatever they paid for. These few people will easily create WP:Consensus on any subject that is not frequented by regular contributors, which is 99% of all subjects. This is assuming that they are not stupid and do not announce their services on the internet (as "wikipedia experts" actually did) and do not tell Jimbo about their plans (as another PR company recently did). Now consider these guys (BTW, someone just removed this link from article Putin, obviously because it was irrelevant, let's assume good faith here), or these guys. Defense rests. My very best wishes (talk) 18:49, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
My very best wishes: Thanks for introducing me to the word Ochlocracy. I had not understood before what you meant by "paid advocacy"; this problem is much more serious for WP than the dyspepsia of a few editors with Idées fixes. Perhaps similar changes in policy regarding consensus would apply to both problems. Brews ohare (talk) 19:03, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
I think we both need a good vacation. Just leave this place for a few weeks and let others have a nice party. Who cares anyway? My very best wishes (talk) 19:16, 28 May 2012 (UTC)
I think your advice is very practical. Actually Elen said it quite aptly: The community generally has little sympathy with a previously sanctioned editor who returns to their problematic behaviour, so Brews might be well advised to take the counsel of Kenny Rogers and "learn when to walk away, and learn when to run. The writing is on the Arbcom clarification page. Perhaps Brews will benefit from a vacation. The longer the better, to compensate for the length of the implements currently pointed at his back from many directions and let some calmer logic prevail over the longer run in what is essentially an overreaction to an overblown content dispute. Δρ.Κ. λόγοςπράξις 14:51, 29 May 2012 (UTC)

Way forward[edit]

I suggested something here. If you and Count Iblis agree, that might be suggested for approval to Arbcom. However, I have no idea if they would approve this. My very best wishes (talk) 02:12, 1 June 2012 (UTC)

I have no objection to some arrangement of this kind assuming that there are some provisions to keep things from going to Administrators to adjudicate content, and it is left in the hands of knowledgeable editors and subject to standard requirements for civility and deference to sources rather than personal opinion. Brews ohare (talk) 03:10, 1 June 2012 (UTC)
If this is something you really want to do (I assume you will be topic-banned), you should politely ask about this at your clarification request, and Count Iblis should confirm that he agree. Maybe they will allow. Technically, you could copy wikitext of whole article to your PC, modify it and sent by email to Count. That might be easier. The point here is simple: this will be completely his responsibility. If he disagrees with any of your changes, he will not make them or will modify them in any way he wants, without discussion with you. My very best wishes (talk) 03:39, 1 June 2012 (UTC)

────────────────────My very best wishes: I have advanced this idea from you and Count Iblis here, and invite you both to discuss it further on that page. Brews ohare (talk) 15:00, 1 June 2012 (UTC)

Brews, do you realize what arbs probably think? They think that your frequent appearance on their talk page is just another example of your alleged WP:TE behavior (so this is a proof to ban you). You probably can ask them about this later, may be in a few months - as an amendment. You might wish to contribute in other projects, such as Wikiversity, until then. My very best wishes (talk) 05:31, 2 June 2012 (UTC)
None of that matters: the proposed limit on my Talk-page activity achieves more than they want with far less trouble to them than their proposed topic ban that involves murky decisions on content every time Blackburne suggests things like 'geology is a branch of physics', or '√4=2 is physics-related math'.
Why do you suppose the Arbs are reluctant to put for motion or to discuss the proposal limiting Talk-page interaction? Brews ohare (talk) 15:27, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

Amendment: Brews ohare topic-ban (Speed of light)[edit]

The following was resolved by motion:

1. From the statements, it is more probable than not that User:Brews ohare is unable to work cooperatively and effectively with others within the topic and is thus repeating the behaviour which resulted in his now expired sanctions. The earlier episodes were very disruptive and were a great drain on the community's patience and resources.

2. It follows that preventative action is appropriate. Accordingly, the Committee topic-bans Brews ohare indefinitely from all pages of whatever nature about physics and physics-related mathematics, broadly construed. After a minimum period of at least one year has elapsed, Brews ohare may ask the Arbitration Committee to reconsider the topic ban, giving his reasons why the Committee should do so.

3. Should Brews ohare violate this topic ban he may be blocked, initially for up to one week, and then with blocks increasing in duration to a maximum of one year, with the clock for any lifting of the topic ban restarting at the end of each block. All blocks are to be logged at Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Speed of light#Log of blocks, bans, and restrictions. Appeals of blocks may only be made by email to the Arbitration Committee.

For the Arbitration Committee, Lord Roem (talk) 19:01, 3 June 2012 (UTC)

My reaction to this topic ban[edit]

This topic ban resulted from my dispute with Dicklyon over adding a sourced quotation referring to Fourier series in the article on Wavelength shown below:

The wavelength, say λ, of a general spatially periodic waveform is the spatial interval in which one cycle of the function repeats itself. Sinusoidal waves with wavelengths related to λ can superimpose to create this spatially periodic waveform. Such a superposition of sinusoids is mathematically described as a Fourier series, and is simply a summation of the sinusoidally varying component waves:
.. "Fourier's theorem states that a function f(x) of spatial period λ, can be synthesized as a sum of harmonic functions whose wavelengths are integral submultiples of λ (i.e. λ, λ/2, λ/3, etc.)."[Note 1]
  1. ^ Eugene Hecht (1975). Schaum's Outline of Theory and Problems of Optics. McGraw-Hill Professional. p. 205. ISBN 0070277303.

This Talk-page disagreement was escalated to a "clarification" proceeding by Blackburne, resulting in ArbCom's conclusion that this dispute showed I was disruptive, and must be topic-banned. A more effective and more easily administered Talk-page measure was ignored.

And to follow up upon Blackburne's May 16 2012 clarification action:

That May 16 2012 clarification action found the ban for which Blackburne had requested "clarification", namely Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Speed of light, had in fact expired.
Having found there was no ban to clarify, the use of a "clarification" hearing was uncalled for. However, ignoring its illegitimacy, the clarification proceeding carried on, and continued directly to draft and impose an entirely new ban where no ban previously was in force. The May 16 2012 clarification action entertained a series of motions, one of which suggested the present ban that is now being "clarified" here.
No formal transmission of the May 16 2012 clarification action to AE occurred, because there was no ban in effect to report a violation of. Bypassing AE and ArbCom review, the results of that "clarification" were then simply tucked into the expired Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Speed of light as a "Motion #7" added to a dead case. Appending the motion to an expired case was done because there was no authority for a clarification hearing to draft a completely new case. Thus it was made to appear as though a case was in force to clarify, although that was pure fiction.
So far as I can see, all this was highly irregular. The preamble at the beginning of Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Clarification and Amendment states that: "Requests for amendment are used to: ask for an amendment or extension of existing sanctions" Likewise: "Requests for clarification are used to ask for further guidance or clarification about an existing completed Arbitration Committee case." Neither of these precepts were followed. Of course, WP is not about rules. Nonetheless, a better approach would have been to ask Blackburne to formulate a charge that could be taken to WP:ANI and proceed from there. However, there was no actionable issue formulated that could be taken to WP:ANI, and the "clarification" process was hijacked instead.

As even the most unrelated topics can be construed as topic-ban violations by the uninformed, or by the simply vindictive, problems will arise unexpectedly. A single Admin can then "on his or her own discretion, impose sanctions" according to WP rules. Experience shows that any contributions by Brews_ohare to discussions on broader topics (like WP organization) will be construed as self-serving, and grounds for censure.

So, for a few years or more, my activity on WP will be minimal. A (sigh) reduction by one of the 25,337 active Wikipedians. As most of these do not contribute much text to WP, never mind new articles or new figures, I will be so-o-o missed !! Brews ohare (talk) 18:55, 13 June 2012 (UTC)

No, the number of "active" wikipedians (100+ edits per month) is actually around only 2,400 [5]. And indeed, most of them contribute little to content and figures. Have a nice summer vacation! My very best wishes (talk) 21:28, 13 June 2012 (UTC)

You got nothing to lose by contributing to math pages, physics related or not. ArbCom made the wrong decision yet again, there is therefore no reason to care about whether or not some Admin will persue you when you do something on some math page. Count Iblis (talk) 01:10, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

Count: I don't understand your advice. For example, if I edit the page about the MIDI system for encoding musical notes digitally, some stalker may say that a musical note corresponds to a frequency and that is physics-related, meaning that the ban is violated. History shows an Administrator will follow up and immediately block, without any investigation of validity. No other Administrator can appeal such a block without a lot of trouble, due to the recent ruling that any overturn requires an ArbCom deliberation.
Although content is outside the realm of ArbCom, and a topic ban obviously requires being able to identify the topic and whether it has arisen, ArbCom has ducked this issue in their comments to me. The attitude expressed by ArbCom is that my good sense can readily identify potential occurrences and avoid them, so ArbCom will never have to face a problem of content. However, history shows ridiculous challenges are accepted at face value by Administrators, with no clue about how to examine validity and no interest in it. So WP will limp along without me, and the hundreds of other contributors similarly dealt with month after month. Brews ohare (talk) 05:11, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
You could still edit the MIDI page and ignore any Wiki-Legal proceedings. If the system is at at fault (and I agree with you that it is at fault, despite that there were some issues about the way you deal with opposition when editing), the best thing is to simply ignore the system and show contempt for it. Just edit any page you think you can improve. Wikipedia:Ignore all rules says: "If a rule prevents you from improving or maintaining Wikipedia, ignore it."
Suppose you can improve a physics page, then what does Wikipedia:Ignore all rules say you should do, given your physics topic ban? Does Wikipedia:Ignore all rules say that ArbCom imposed topic bans should be respected? No, it says that if you can improve the page but a rule whatever policy that may be based on, would prevent you fro doing so, you should ignore it. Now, the first time when you wrere topic banned and you signalled that you would leve Wikipedia forgood, I suggested that at least you could violate your topic ban by making high quality edits to some physics page. An Arbitrator then attacked me for giving bad advice, saying that IAR des not apply to ArbCom decisions etc. etc. However, that was a plain lie. ArbCom can say all it wants about IAR, that doesn't make it so unless the text of IAR would say it.
Now, ArbCom will still ban you if you edit a physics page, and they can argue why IAR doesn't apply, perhaps by saying that if you violate a topic ban then that in itself does damage to the encyclopedia. But they didn't go through even a limited hearing; first they said that the old ArbCom sanctions do not apply, and then all of a sudden they decided that they would still topic ban you. So, I say, you should challenge this by editing any page you like to edit, physics related or not. Certainly, the spirit of IAR is that ridiculous rules should be ignored.
If you get blocked for a topic ban violation, and the edit you made was of high quality, that would i.m.o. improve Wikipedia, as that would discredit the current ArbCom system. Count Iblis (talk) 16:21, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
Count: Thanks for your explanation. I'd agree that a courageous ignoring of faulty rulings would provoke some reassessment of process in a system concerned to better WP. However, ArbCom's approach has nothing to do with what is good for WP, whether that is intention or simply incapacity.
So, IMO, exposing faulty decisions is ineffective, even if it reveals ArbCom in a truly grotesque contortion. The only method proven to work is airing dirty laundry in a very public arena, like the Chronicle of Higher Education or the New York Times, thereby threatening future donations. Even that causes no reflection in depth, but only a minor fix for the particular instance. Brews ohare (talk) 18:27, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

Photon-photon scattering image thanks[edit]

Hi. Your image is File:Photon-photon_scattering.png is displayed on the main page in the active (as of my writing) WP:DYK as it relates to the DYK article Schwinger limit. Thanks for the uploading the image. Teply (talk) 04:55, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Dispute Resolution IRC office hours.[edit]

Hello there. As you expressed interest in hearing updates to my research in the dispute resolution survey that was done a few months ago, I just wanted to let you know that I am hosting an IRC office hours session this coming Saturday, 28th July at 19:00 UTC (approximately 12 hours from now). This will be located in the #wikimedia-office connect IRC channel - if you have not participated in an IRC discussion before you can connect to IRC here.

Regards, User:Szhang (WMF) (talk) 07:00, 28 July 2012 (UTC)

Merge discussion for FMCW [edit]

Information.svg An article that you have been involved in editing, FMCW , has been proposed for a merge with another article. If you are interested in the merge discussion, please participate by going here, and adding your comments on the discussion page. Thank you. Pierre cb (talk) 15:17, 4 August 2012 (UTC)

Good to see that you are still around[edit]

How did that IRC session go? →Yaniv256 talk contribs 23:06, 13 August 2012 (UTC)

Yaniv: Unfortunately I was tied up and couldn't join that session. Brews ohare (talk) 00:24, 14 August 2012 (UTC)
That is indeed unfortunate as I was interested in your report on the report, so to speak, and now it will be missing that element. I wanted to thank you for writing your many good essays and pointing me to them. I found that they provided me with much information that is common knowledge among experienced editors, but is fundamentally missing in the official introductions a new editor encounters. Specifically, the distance between the impression one gets by reading the Pillars and Wikipedian reality is quite reminiscent of that which one finds in common propaganda, and I think an adequate reference to your contributions would do much to remedy that ideologically motivated misinformation. I was also wondering if you may advise me on a particular case I am currently involved in, if you find it of theoretical interest. Best regards, your young poetic friend, →Yaniv256 talk contribs 01:18, 14 August 2012 (UTC)
Yaniv: My experience is that although it is possible and occasionally does occur that disputes are settled based upon objective criteria, content and sources, that outcome is rather rare and very definitely not the norm on WP. It is tempting to believe that clarity of expression will prove decisive, but that is almost never the case. So my considered opinion is that there is nothing to be gained at all from an extended back-and-forth, especially one involving Administrators. There may be understandable reasons why the system does not work, but the practical conclusion is that it should be avoided. Brews ohare (talk) 15:29, 25 August 2012 (UTC)

Dependent current source in Common base with Norton driver.PNG[edit]

It's probably me who doesn't understand it, but shouldn't the dependent current source in Common base with Norton driver.PNG be drawn the other way? DesbWit (talk) 14:07, 25 August 2012 (UTC)

I get it now: Instead of having the current source is flipped to get rid of the negative sign. Sorry to have bothered. DesbWit (talk) 13:33, 28 August 2012 (UTC)

Cartesian dualism avoids determinism[edit]

RE: Free will edit 15:51, 16 September 2012‎; "Cartesian dualism allows human free will" -> "Cartesian dualism avoids determinism": NB this has changed the original conclusion of your paragraph from a point regarding free will to a point regarding determinism. NB I was trying to retain the original conclusion of the paragraph while clarifying the definition of free will pertaining to it ("Cartesian dualism allows incompatibilist free will").

Excellent section by the way.

Richardbrucebaxter (talk) 06:17, 17 September 2012 (UTC)

Disambiguation link notification for October 2[edit]

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In the acceleration article I found an unsupported claim that decomposition into tangential and normal component can be made only for planar curves (see the article talk page). As you wrote that section, would you please care to explain?--Ilevanat (talk) 00:01, 18 October 2012 (UTC)

Ilevanat: I regret that as I am presently working under ArbCom restrictions, I cannot help you here. Brews ohare (talk) 02:05, 18 October 2012 (UTC)

The ArbCom restrictions allow you to edit articles, but do not allow you to answer questions about your edits? I have long ago given up hope to understand many things happening in the world, let alone some wikipedia policies, but this ArbCom thing sounds too crazy to be possible.--Ilevanat (talk) 23:49, 19 October 2012 (UTC)

John, you are wanted here[edit],4402.0.html -- (talk) 01:28, 19 October 2012 (UTC)

October 2012[edit]

Thank you for your contributions. Please remember to mark your edits as "minor" only if they truly are minor edits. In accordance with Help:Minor edit, a minor edit is one that the editor believes requires no review and could never be the subject of a dispute. Minor edits consist of things such as typographical corrections, formatting changes, or rearrangement of text without modification of content. Additionally, the reversion of clear-cut vandalism and test edits may be labeled "minor". Thank you. JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 02:38, 19 October 2012 (UTC)


Hello. There is currently a discussion at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents regarding an issue with which you may have been involved. Thank you.—Machine Elf 1735 19:17, 29 October 2012 (UTC)

Closed, no action as of 02:18, 30 October 2012 by Nobody Ent.

Delays at free will[edit]

Hi Brews, just wanted to let you know that I see your comments at Talk:Free will, I just don't have time to give them a proper response right now. Hopefully before the end of the week. --Pfhorrest (talk) 09:20, 8 November 2012 (UTC)

Length measurement[edit]

Just to note that your edits [6] and [7] are I think covered by the terms of your topic ban. I thought I should mention this before you do something that causes someone to act on the ban.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 18:20, 16 November 2012 (UTC)

Sorry; I forgot about that for the moment. Fortunately, it was only a link update to reflect the change in the header made in another linked article. Brews ohare (talk) 19:45, 16 November 2012 (UTC)
JohnBlackburne is correct, though I would be very annoyed at anyone who brought an obviously non-substantive edit of the sort as a pretext to sanction you. This doesn't mean that it's okay for you to routinely do such edits, but I don't want you to fear stepping on a landmine every time you make a trivial edit either. — Coren (talk) 20:51, 16 November 2012 (UTC)

Free will is not about physics[edit]

I'm afraid that this is getting to be a problem. With this talk page contribution you are suggesting adding physics related content to the article Free will. In my interpretation that is precisely what "broadly construed" means in the topic ban: not just physics articles and their talk pages but physics related content in any article. And this edit is far more substantial and contentious than the earlier change to Length measurement.--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 16:31, 21 November 2012 (UTC)

John: The discussion at free will is not about physics, but about some philosophical points about what can and cannot be said about free will. Although some physicists (Laplace, Bohr, Mach, Eddington, Einstein, Heisenberg) have discussed such matters, they are not discussing physics but wearing their philosophical hats, and have explicitly said so in their writings upon these matters. I don't think this is the kind of thing ArbCom had in mind in considering physics topics like Centrifugal force or Wavelength, and other articles where you and Dicklyon have objected to my contributing. Brews ohare (talk) 16:43, 21 November 2012 (UTC)
I'd add that the discussion at free will is not "contentious". Pfhorrest and I are trying to develop a clearer formulation of this article, which we agree needs reworking, and that requires some back and forth to clarify what is going on. There is nothing heated about this exchange. Brews ohare (talk) 17:09, 21 November 2012 (UTC)
It's your pet theory of complementarity (physics), the one you tried to insert into causality, after I reverted you here: Talk:Mind–body problem#Distinguished dualists of the past (which you argued ad nauseum here: Talk:Mind–body problem#Bohr's views on causality, here: Talk:Mind–body problem#Bohr and here: Talk:Mind–body problem#Pertinence of Bohr's views)... Despite John Blackburne's kind warning, no doubt you have every intention of carrying on at free will.Machine Elf 1735 11:17, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
MachineElf: The discussion about Bohr's philosophical speculations is not physics in either case, but the notion that the standard idea of "causality" may be inapplicable to the mind-body interaction and likewise to free will and mental causation. Have fun. Brews ohare (talk)

I have made corrections to your edit of the Acceleration article[edit]

as you can see in the article, plus explanations on its talk page. I do not do such things without consent of the previous author. I made this exception due to the special "ban" circumstances, but I feel the obligation at least to inform you. If you want to discuss anything, you can use my mail address; that certainly cannot be prohibited by the "ban".--Ilevanat (talk) 00:05, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

New quantum theory[edit]

Hey Brews is this a area where you can le4nd a eye and a voice as to correctness and possibility suitability to be here on wiki? Hell In A Bucket (talk) 19:34, 2 December 2012 (UTC)

Nice to hear from you. My ban from physics topics is still in effect for about another year, so my doubtless unmatchable perspective on this topic will have to wait. Thanks for the visit. Brews ohare (talk) 20:40, 2 December 2012 (UTC)
Oh shit I thought that nonsense was done with. I"m sorry Brews hope you're well. Hell In A Bucket (talk) 21:00, 2 December 2012 (UTC)

Your essay[edit]

I've closed the discussion at Wikipedia:Miscellany_for_deletion/Wikipedia:Quoted_citations as "userify", and moved your essay to User:Brews ohare/Quoted_citations (with minor template adjustment and category changes). — Coren (talk) 01:31, 6 December 2012 (UTC)

Arbitration enforcement request[edit]

Your recent editing is being discussed here:


--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 04:26, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Request for clarification on WP:ARBSL[edit]

I have filed a request at Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Clarification and Amendment for clarification on the scope of the topic ban placed upon Brews ohare in the Speed of light case. As you have recently participated in an arbitration enforcement request regarding this case and precipitating the clarification request, your comments would be welcome. Seraphimblade Talk to me 06:11, 15 December 2012 (UTC)

Wiki math and politics[edit]

Re the clarification request. WP is a political environment (I know that's politically incorrect, but it is what it is). You've got seven arbs commenting already that no clarification is coming and/or they think you violated the ban, and no arb dissenting. The probability they will change their mind at this point asymptotically approaches zero; likewise the probability of a change in topic ban at this point is the same. If my comments led you to think otherwise, accept my apologies.

I suggest taking a long-term approach, with these specific suggestions:

  • Delete all your comments at the clarification with something like I did not consider my free will edits to be under the scope of the ban; however, I now understand the community's interpretation is that they did and will refrain from any mention of physics topics in the future or equivalent.
  • Likewise at WP:AE. You'll either get a last chance warning or a week block -- I'm not as good at reading the mood at AE as some other venues, but either way it's not the end of the world.
  • As you go forward, you're just going to have to avoid any use of words that sound physicsy to normal people. While we both know terms like second are actually physics, most folks don't, so if you stick to commonly used words you should be okay.
  • Yea, I was thinking that JohnBlackburne (talk · contribs)'s ratting you out for Free will was a bit stalkerish, but looking at their length of time here (long), edit count (high) and block log (empty), and the fact they did give your fair notice here on your talk page, complaining about them is a waste of time. So turn it around and use them like a Coal mine canary -- the next time they warn you they think you're encroaching on physicsy stuff, immediately remove or strike (if someone's replied) the comment. Then twist it around ask them how to phrase the rhetorical point you want to make without violating the ban.
  • If you find yourself in a discussion where another editor starts introducing physics material into the argument, I'd consider asking one of the AE admins who have commented more sympathetically (Coren, NW, Seraphimblade, EdJohnston) for advice on their talk page; I've found most Wikipedians active in dispute resolution would much rather be helpful than have to be doling out blocks. Worse case is they say no.
  • In about six months, if you can stay off WP:AE would be the time to start trying to get restrictions eased. I'd start with simply asking for your talk page to be exempted -- I see you've had to decline to answer some questions posted here. Then go from there. NE Ent 15:15, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
NE Ent: Thanks for the interest. I do not have a strong expectation of good judgment or a real look into what the problem is. Admins have lots of things to do, and quickly dealing with them on any basis that will expedite matters is first priority. There are some that actually do think though, and I hope to resonate with those that actually want WP to prosper and are not completely submerged in battling the onset of minutiae. Maybe, a long, long, time from now, something will be done to get WP back on track and get Administrators involved in real decision making, not just garbage collection.
Inasmuch as the result of this hearing is pretty much going to leave things as they are, and inasmuch as Blackburne has again managed to pervert WP process, there is very little I can do here. I'll sit back for a while or forever, depending upon who knows what, and much later perhaps try to raise some questions about the perversion of clarification hearings to become short-cuts to unnecessary, ill-considered and ill-willed actions. Brews ohare (talk) 15:55, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
Well, if your goal is to fix WP processes I'm pretty sure you're going to fail, but that's your choice. If you goal is to be able to edit WP, that's really up to you. I don't think Blackburne's perverted anything; they've simply understood and used the process as it is. NE Ent 16:41, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
  • I'll second NE Ent's opinion that most admins would much rather help early than reach the point where blocks seem warranted – but that by the time things reach a noticeboard it is often too late to entirely salvage the situation. Don't hesitate to seek help early and, more importantly, to heed advice you've been given. Wikipedia isn't unlike academia in that it's so heavily laden with unspoken rules and assumptions that one can run afoul of the system when one does what is superficially "plainly correct". I'm guessing this is why you're having difficulties, but very many people here would be happy to give you a hand. — Coren (talk) 19:21, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

Clarification closed

Arbitration Enforcement thread closed[edit]

A thread at arbitration enforcement which concerned you has been closed as follows: Brews ohare will be issued a final warning, logged to WP:ARBSL, that the topic ban covers all material reasonably and closely related to physics, regardless of what page such material is on. Brews ohare is further urged to request clarification from an uninvolved administrator (preferably one familiar with the case) or here at AE prior to beginning editing any material where its relation to the topic ban may be in question. Such clarification requests made in good faith will not be considered a violation of the ban.

I'll also add, seeing the above discussion, that I would much rather hand out advice than blocks, and that's true of most every admin I've worked with. Please don't hesitate to ask if something's unclear. Seraphimblade Talk to me 18:30, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Editing Complaint[edit]

Hello. This message is being sent to inform you that there is currently a discussion at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard regarding an issue with which you may have been involved. Thank you. Richardbrucebaxter (talk) 09:01, 12 February 2013 (UTC)

AE request opened[edit]

Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Enforcement#Brews_ohare NE Ent 02:54, 14 February 2013 (UTC)

February 2013[edit]

To enforce an arbitration decision, and for violating your topic ban as detailed in the AE thread you were notified of above,
you have been blocked from editing for 1 week. You are welcome to make useful contributions once the block expires. If you believe this block is unjustified, please read the guide to appealing arbitration enforcement blocks and then appeal your block using the instructions there.  Sandstein  17:17, 14 February 2013 (UTC)

Reminder to administrators: In March 2010, ArbCom adopted a procedure prohibiting all administrators "from reversing or overturning (explicitly or in substance) any action taken by another administrator pursuant to the terms of an active arbitration remedy, and explicitly noted as being taken to enforce said remedy, except: (a) with the written authorization of the Committee, or (b) following a clear, substantial, and active consensus of uninvolved editors at a community discussion noticeboard (such as WP:AN or WP:ANI). If consensus in such discussions is hard to judge or unclear, the parties should submit a request for clarification on the proper page." Administrators who reverse an arbitration enforcement block, such as this one, without clear authorisation will be summarily desysopped.

Open letter to Administrators at AE[edit]

Administrators Sandstein, DQ, Cailil, Mr. Stradivarius:

It is not kind of you all to come to a decision to block with no input of any kind from the subject of this action, and so quickly that no response was possible.

In fact, there is no violation of my topic ban. The fact that the adjective physical appears in the term physical determinism does not indicate that it is actually a topic in physics or "closely related" to physics. This confusion is analogous to interpreting "light bulb" as being about the physics of "light".

The topic of physical determinism is a topic in metaphysics, just like nomological determinism, or mental causation, or subject-object problem, all very closely related topics that I have contributed to substantially lately, and all historically ancient philosophical topics that have their beginnings with Aristotle and Plato if not earlier. The sources examined in these edits of mine are all by philosophers, or (rarely) by scientists writing as philosophers.

It is alarming to me that Administrators charged with the care of WP would rush to make such a content-related judgment with no input about the subject in order to get the facts straight.

Regards, Brews ohare (talk) 17:48, 14 February 2013 (UTC)

Letter to Administrator Sandstein[edit]

Administrator Sandstein:

I have left a letter to all involved Administrators on the topic of my block at Administrators_at_AE Open letter to Administrators at AE. I am sure of two things: first, that the block will not be overturned as a matter of policy, and second, that Administrators involved have no grasp of the subject under discussion, and have acted out of ignorance. Some notion of the subtleties involved can be seen in Laws of Nature vs. Laws of Science.

Perhaps needless to say, the philosophy articles in WP are in terrible condition and stand in very poor relation to those of the online sites Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy and Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. I have been trying to change this situation to the best of my ability.

Although Administrators have a lot to handle and pressures upon their time limit their ability to delve into such situations, it is very clear that only the temporarily insane like myself will attempt to improve WP in the face of such nonsense. It would be most helpful in improving WP if Administrators did not abet inimical practices initiated by a few malcontents, by Administrator enforcement of actions that have no bearing upon proper conduct of WP.

In this particular instance, my efforts at Physical determinism have been resisted by Richardbrucebaxter who refuses to engage in discussion and edits only on the Main page and without any Talk page support. He initiated the present kerfuffle because I resisted these actions. Thereupon JohnBlackburne, who follows me everywhere, saw an opportunity to be a nuisance again and support an AE action.

I hope AE might resist the temptation to do something like this again.

Thanks for taking the time to read this letter,

Brews ohare (talk) 15:46, 15 February 2013 (UTC)

Hello. Insofar as this is an appeal of your block to me, it is declined. The only relevant question is whether you infringed on your topic ban, which is worded as encompassing "all pages of whatever nature about physics (...), broadly construed". Above, you contend that you did not violate the topic ban by creating and editing Physical determinism. That is incorrect. The article is about a concept that relates to physics. It also contains text such as "The concept of physical determinism has also been used to denote the predictability of a physical system", "Physical determinism can also be viewed as an observed phenomenon of our experience, or a thesis only relevant to mathematical models of physics and other physical sciences", or "The notion of physical determinism takes its classical form in the ideas of Laplace, who posited (in agreement with the physics of his time) that an omniscient observer (called sometimes Laplace's demon) knowing with infinite precision the positions and velocities of every particle in the universe could predict the future entirely". These statements relate to physics. The article Physical determinism is therefore a "page ... about physics ... broadly construed", and therefore within the scope of your topic ban. As to your statements about the alleged misconduct by others, or the condition of philosophy articles in Wikipedia, these statements are not relevant to whether or not you violated your topic ban.  Sandstein  16:30, 15 February 2013 (UTC)

────────────────────Sandstein: Thanks for taking the time to reply. Of course, in some broad sense a discussion of the practice of science and its bearing upon our views of how we sit in the Universe has some connection to physics at a metaphysical level, but has nothing to do with physics as understood and practiced by physicists. However, more important than whether a line has been crossed, is that the purpose of Administrative action is to advance the development of Wikipedia, and I frankly see no way that intrusion by Administrators into a semantic debate technically beyond their understanding has any such result. Such actions encourage a disrespect for Administrators' judgment and for their grasp of their rather more important real responsibilities. That disappointment is reinforced by your stated rejection of the relevance of Administrator actions either to the improvement in quality or to conduct on WP, matters one would hope to be a concern. Brews ohare (talk) 17:43, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

Block happy admin strike again! Thus continues the highlighted need for an impartial review board and not the blocking admin who seems to jump the gun every time he perceives even the smallest possibility of pushing the block button. Hell In A Bucket (talk) 15:34, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
H in a B: Thanks for the morale support. Brews ohare (talk) 17:43, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

Laws of Nature vs. Laws of Science[edit]

Norman Swartz (February 2009). "Laws of Nature". Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved 2013-2-14. Check date values in: |accessdate= (help) introduces the concept of a distinction between laws of science and laws of nature, the first being approximate and inaccurate, and the latter being ideal and completely accurate.

Laws of Nature are to be distinguished both from Scientific Laws and from Natural Laws. ...Within metaphysics, there are two competing theories of Laws of Nature. On one account, the Regularity Theory, Laws of Nature are statements of the uniformities or regularities in the world; they are mere descriptions of the way the world is. On the other account, the Necessitarian Theory, Laws of Nature are the “principles” which govern the natural phenomena of the world. That is, the natural world “obeys” the Laws of Nature. This seemingly innocuous difference marks one of the most profound gulfs within contemporary philosophy, and has quite unexpected, and wide-ranging, implications.

— Norman Swartz, The Laws of Nature in Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy

August 2013[edit]

Brews, the personal attacks are getting out of hand. This in particular should be redacted. I realise you are getting frustrated at the failure of the community to support your various changes but that is no excuse. Its pretty clear to see that if this continues its going to end up at ANI or at enforcement with requests to extend your topic ban or worse. Personally I think that would be a pity, you could contribute great content if you were prepared to work with other editors but I can't remember a single example of you letting something go, other than under pressure or threat. That is a great shame, but its your choice. Ignore the later part of this if you want, but redact that comment it could get you another ban in its own right ----Snowded TALK 06:37, 17 August 2013 (UTC)

Snowded, I'd have to agree to a failure to achieve support of the 'community' consisting of Blackburne, yourself, and a few others that show up occasionally. Mostly the real community doesn't give a damn what I do, and neither does ArbCom until Blackburne drags me to ANI on a topic ban issue.
In your case in particular, I don't think the failure is all mine: I am entirely willing to modify proposed additions, change sources and so forth in an exchange of views. But where you have been involved, you are unable to articulate your concerns. Your instincts tell you something isn't quite right, but you just cannot crystallize what it is that bothers you. You are not disposed to engage in actual development of material, but remain tongue-tied and resort to repeated unexplained claims of policy violations, citing policies that seem not even to apply.
And then you take the attitude that banning me from the project will fix your problems. I have made useful and necessary contributions to WP, numbering in the hundreds of articles and massive revisions of many more. I've added dozens of figures (and would add more if it were not for you). The rate of accretion of new articles on WP is statistically declining, and revisions of any consequence are a rarity in most topic areas not involving current events. Editors interested in adding substantially to WP are scarce. Why is that? Do you suppose WP has such complete coverage and such accuracy that there is just nothing more to say?
The effect of your actions is to hobble WP so it remains in its present imperfect state. You keep insisting upon trimming articles down and merging them with others. I don't know why that is so appealing compared to expanding treatment of topics and providing readers with a greater and greater wealth of more and more complete information. Brews ohare (talk) 15:08, 17 August 2013 (UTC)
Brews if you bother to check you will see I have refrained from reporting you (despite provocation and opportunity) for breaking your various edit restrictions. My experience of you is that once you have decided on an edit you fight it to the last and even when people try to help (remember Bob) you still refuse to accept any compromise. You also completely fail to understand synthesis or arguments that relate to that policy. Yes Wikipedia needs more content, but it does not need content that is not encyclopaedic in nature. You are repeatedly writing essays on the various topics and then getting upset when other editors will not indulge your wish for discussion. It's your call however, I've tried to help and you are at high risk with some of the crass insults you have been handing out lately. ----Snowded TALK 18:51, 17 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded you don't sound conciliatory. And your notions about synthesis and what is encyclopedic in nature, and what constitutes an 'essay' are debatable. They could be discussed, but are you in the mood? Brews ohare (talk) 19:05, 17 August 2013 (UTC)
If you show evidence of listening then always in the mood, but precious sign of that to date ----Snowded TALK 20:09, 17 August 2013 (UTC)
Brews, I'm all for inverting your topic ban so that you only edit Physics articles, narrowly construed... after all, that is your area of expertise, right? But either way, please be guided by "the 'community' consisting of Blackburne, [Snowded], and a few others that show up occasionally", right.—Machine Elf 1735 00:53, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
You two both seem to think (i) you are good listeners and (ii) very knowledgeable in philosophy. If we look at this resistance to adding a simple figure, or this resistance] to adding a few sourced sentences, or this objection to adding a simple very well-documented quotation, are there ways to demonstrate your skills at listening and apply your knowledge of philosophy to arrive at something constructive? Or is it your stance that I am just too pigheaded to listen (to what?) Brews ohare (talk) 15:05, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
MachineElf: I do want to thank you for suggesting I rewrite Subject-object problem, which I did with great interest (and success, judging by the increase in reader hits), and for suggesting I move a contribution about quantifiers to the article Quantifier variance (which I drafted). These were helpful suggestions. Perhaps you would agree these were helpful contributions on my part? In the philosophy area, I also added Holophrastic indeterminacy, Internal-external distinction and Model-dependent realism, and the related article Conceptualization (information science), and made some significant changes to Ontological commitment. Maybe I am not altogether a nuisance, eh? Brews ohare (talk) 15:24, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
And fought for your original text on each one refusing to listen or engage with other editors. In a large part each of those articles recycled similar material. Some good stuff but it is getting overwealmed by your refusal to compromise or listen. ----Snowded TALK 19:23, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded, this kind of remark is not constructive and simply reinforces your own attitude that everything is set in stone. It's not. Brews ohare (talk) 23:38, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

What is an 'essay'?[edit]

I'm proposing a discussion with Snowded, and whoever else wishes to join in, as to what constitutes an 'essay'. Let's begin with the application of Template:Essay.

The link is to Wikipedia:Wikipedia essays. It says an essay is in the project namespace and its title begins with the prefix Wikipedia. It "typically addresses some aspect of working in Wikipedia, but has not been formally adopted as a guideline or policy by the community at large".

Now Snowded, apparently you mean nothing like that.

This is more what you have in mind. However, simple rewording is not what you have in mind. You say to me:

"You are repeatedly writing essays on the various topics and then getting upset when other editors will not indulge your wish for discussion." 17 August 2013
"I am not sure of the utility of the article, but it is "mostly harmless" so I am confining myself to ensuring it does not become a personal essay, with your own personal illustrations." 5 August 2013
"We are not here to write essays, or personally select what we find interesting." 8 April 2013
"Essay-like is nothing to do with sources there or not, it's style.' 5 July 2013 (Some punctuation added to make an intelligible sentence out of it. Hope meaning is not altered.)

From these quotes, I am led to believe that you, Snowded, are of the opinion that I simply state my own opinion. Now, of course, that does not happen without my providing a source. So your objection extends beyond my stating 'my' opinion to providing my selection of sources. The idea is that out of a universe of discourse, I cherry-pick sources that suit my views. The result is an essay-like contribution that is parochial in nature, and not a proper full discussion of all the various views out there.

Have I got this right? Is this what you are proposing, Snowded, when you refer to my contributions as 'personal essays' or 'essay-like'?

Assuming that to be the case, here is a simple way to challenge such an essay: state a different view of the topic and provide a source for that view.

From my own viewpoint, no contribution of mine has been one-sided, and where different opinions exist that I know about or discover, I have presented them. But you, Snowded, have never undertaken to suggest additional material or an additional source that has been omitted. Instead of making that effort, you simply challenge the sources I have presented as being 'primary sources', and so unworthy of consideration. That is another discussion.

Snowded, I am inviting you to present your take on this topic of what is an 'essay' and what is objectionable about it, and just what can be done about it. Brews ohare (talk) 19:41, 18 August 2013 (UTC)

An essay in this context is where you select a limited range of primary sources and assembly them in a sequece (often with too many quotes) based on your synthesis of that material. Often, even when you use secondary sources you then serch out primary ones that match your understanding but are not referenced. As to what can be done about it I am not sure. You have essays on your user page in which you disagree with wikipedia policy and your attempts to change policy have resulted in little success. You have I think a key decision to make. Will you work with wikipedia policy and other editors or continue to persue your view of what should be? ----Snowded TALK 19:53, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
Oh, and it shows the level of your misunderstanding that you think the solution is for other editors to create competing essays. That also explains your frustrations that I and others will not spend time debating your opinion on the talk pages. ----Snowded TALK 19:55, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded, your remark "An essay in this context is where you select a limited range of primary sources and assembly them in a sequece (often with too many quotes) based on your synthesis of that material" seems to me to repeat what I suggested was your stance, which I phrased as follows:
"The idea is that out of a universe of discourse, I cherry-pick sources that suit my views. The result is an essay-like contribution that is parochial in nature, and not a proper full discussion of all the various views out there."
If there is a significant difference, please point it out. Brews ohare (talk) 23:41, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded, you follow up with the claim that my solution for avoiding too narrow a view is "for other editors to create competing essays". I take that as a rejection of my suggestion of a "simple way to challenge such an essay: state a different view of the topic and provide a source for that view." Is my assumption correct? All that I mean is that, where a presentation appears parochial, for you to point out what is missing or misstated and provide some source to remedy the problem. That is not an unreasonable request, do you think? It doesn't require so much exposition from you as to become a 'competing essay'. It does require more than the bare-bones allegation that a contribution is a parochial 'essay', or the uncorroborated assertion that it is based on cherry-picked primary sources. Brews ohare (talk) 02:30, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
Yes you are correct in your first assumption. As to the rest it really depends on the motivation, role and time of the editors concerned. As Bob pointed out to you I patrol a broad range of articles and tend to focus on making sure material does not get in without proper sourcing etc. That task itself takes up more time that I should really allocating to this project. That also means checking for synthesis. On a major article I have worked on content, but on minor articles its down to the person who cares about them to get the content right. In many of the cases you list my general view has been along the lines of: If you really want an article on this OK, but I don;t see its value. In those cases I am just going to police content ----Snowded TALK 06:17, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
Perhaps a more blunt statement of your adopted role is to say where you identify what you see as 'synthesis' or cherry-picking sources (what you label essays), particularly in situations where you are not moved to engage, you will simply 'hang tough' and see no need to explain your actions. Where you see an 'essay' you will revert the contribution, and see no need for justification beyond labeling it. Where you see a WP policy infraction, you will simply point out the policy and have no obligation to explain why you think it applies. How does that sound? Brews ohare (talk) 14:01, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded, you might recognize that your perspective on material can be a mystery to the contributor. Brews ohare (talk) 14:17, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
I always explain the reason Brews, the problem is you either don't understand or don't agree ----Snowded TALK 19:27, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded: However clear you think your in-line editorial comments are, you will doubtless agree that your explanation of things is often brief and tends to be limited. Let's look at your belief that some of my contributions are essays. I now understand that label to refer to your opinion that I follow this practice: (1) the biased selection of particular sources to support my chosen viewpoint, and (2) the unwarranted combination of these opinions to arrive at views not intended by these authors, or at least not explicitly stated by these authors. I don't agree with that characterization. But, would you agree that this is how you view my contributions?
I have little doubt that you won't agree that this is your position. Based on that expectation, I want to ask the following question: Just how much support for such an assessment is warranted? If I read your comments correctly, your answer is that in cases where the contribution is minor (which includes just about everything I do, I'd guess) a brief (I'd say cryptic) in-line remark is all that is needed. How am I doing so far?
Typically you say (I paraphrase): "the contribution is based upon a synthesis of primary sources; go find a third-party source". Period. No further clarification will be forthcoming. Anything short of a third-party source is unacceptable, regardless of how reputable, or how many, or how clearly the primary sources may espouse a position. The advantage for you is that no further engagement is required from you (in your opinion) and the contribution is unworthy of further comment (beyond, perhaps, some sarcasm regarding my ability to grasp the obvious). Brews ohare (talk) 19:45, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
Have I got you right? Brews ohare (talk) 22:30, 19 August 2013 (UTC)

─────────────────────────And they get increasingly brief as you fail to pay attention. The request for a third party source is very clear and policy on use of primary sources is also clear. If you want to change policy then a discussion with me on one article is not the way to do it. ----Snowded TALK 04:58, 20 August 2013 (UTC)

Snowded: Where do you find the statement of policy on this matter? Here are two links about primary secondary and tertiary sources: WP:PRIMARY and WP:USEPRIMARY. Their position is as follows:
" Secondary or tertiary sources are needed to establish the topic's notability and to avoid novel interpretations of primary sources. All interpretive claims, analyses, or synthetic claims about primary sources must be referenced to a secondary source, rather than to an original analysis of the primary-source material by Wikipedia editors."
Now, I have no difficulty with this policy. Is it what you have in mind?
Its application is regarding 'novel interpretation' or 'synthetic claims'. Obviously, your own perception of synthesis or of novel interpretation can be mistaken or subtle, and some additional comment supporting your objections is appropriate. Your practice of simply stating a violation is present is inadequate. In the cases where we have clashed, in my opinion, there has been no instance of either of these bad behaviors. Can you see that a difference of views may exist in such cases, requiring discussion? Brews ohare (talk) 15:37, 20 August 2013 (UTC)
Discussion of the source yes, not of the content ----Snowded TALK 20:45, 20 August 2013 (UTC)
Please clarify. Brews ohare (talk) 23:19, 20 August 2013 (UTC)
Discussion of whether the source is a secondary one, reliable etc. etc. Not a discussion of your view of the content. ----Snowded TALK 10:47, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded: Thank you for your clarification. The question asked was whether you felt your personal assessment of a contribution as exhibiting synthesis or introducing interpretation of a source was possibly not shared by contributor, and therefore warranted an explanation on your part beyond your statement of your own assessment in the form of an in-line edit summary limited to (more or less): "the contribution is based upon a synthesis of primary sources; go find a third-party source". Is it your reply that indeed no further explanation on your part is forthcoming, and all that is open to further input from yourself is whether a third-party source proffered by the contributor is adequate, again, in your opinion? I just want clarification that I have your position correctly stated. Brews ohare (talk) 11:17, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
I'd add that I think that position is rather hard-line and basically sets you up as an 'expert' whose opinion trumps all other opinion. I think your view is that having identified a policy violation, there is nothing more to discuss. The problem with this view is that the establishment of a policy violation is in itself a controversial matter and conveying the reasons for such an interpretation becomes an obligation both for clarity and to aid the contributor in modifying their contribution. Brews ohare (talk) 14:53, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
Well so far on the RfC's you have called and there has been participation my interpretation of policy has been supported. I always identify the issue, but then you just don;t give up. Look at the picture as an illustration. I allowed several changes refused that. But you just won't compromise and go on, and on, and on. You need to think about that. Get reasonable and people will be more relaxed with your edits ----Snowded TALK 15:47, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded: Your first response is that indeed your experience is that you are an accurate interpreter of policy as evidenced by your interpretation of historical community response, so indeed, you are a notch above run-of-the-mill explanation. Your second response is that you 'always identify the issue'. Identification of an issue as one of 'interpretation' or 'synthesis' of sources is not really helpful without an indication of the reasoning behind those assessments. We will, of course, continue specific debates on other Talk pages. I think, of course, that I am reasonable, and that you are opaque. Brews ohare (talk) 15:58, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
Of course you do Brews, and I am in the good company of Arbcom, the wider physics community and those responding on RfCs. We are all of course being opaque in the face of your reasonableness ----Snowded TALK 16:09, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
Well, I am happy for you to be so tight with ArbCom. I had no idea that you claimed comradeship with the 'wider physics community'; sorry, but I find that unlikely. As for those responding to RfC's. well look in the mirror - that's just about all present. Brews ohare (talk) 17:29, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
Your misreading of that is illustrative of the wider problem. In good company, means in this context that all those groups have been subject to your vilification for not agreeing with you, not the same thing as comradeship. Where you have got a response on an RfC it has been to reject your proposals, and generally now the community is ignoring them. A behavioural change would be most welcome and I am sure the community would then work with you. But as it stands things are going down hill fast and a lot of your edit summaries would be enough to get you sanctioned if I was the complaining type (which I am not). ----Snowded TALK 17:54, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
Snowded: I regret that we cannot open a line of communication. I don't find your diatribes about myself conducive to your greater understanding. They are simply venting without addressing anything substantial.

─────────────────────────Here is a summary of the key points:

  • You use the term 'essay' as shorthand to describe contributions that, in your opinion, exhibit cherry-picking of sources and synthesis of their views to arrive at positions not endorsed by those sources.
  • You arrive at this designation based upon your own interpretation, and generally point out violations of WP:SYN or WP:NOR as having occurred.
  • You think it unnecessary to engage in any back-and-forth about your judgments or how these policies have been breached.

That's it. Brews ohare (talk) 18:05, 21 August 2013 (UTC)

If you insert 'continuous and repeated' before 'back and forth' and delete 'any' then I am broadly in agreement ----Snowded TALK 18:14, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
We may be as close to agreement as is possible.
You have said that you already spend too much time on WP, and time explaining your actions would limit your effectiveness. That is a judgment call, of course.
But time spent in discussion also is shortened by direct and plain answers to objections to your invocations of WP:SYN and WP:NOR. Looking over our exchanges, a lot of your time has been spent in your trying to avoid explaining yourself instead of just saying what is on your mind. I think to some extent this reluctance is a reflection of unwillingness on your part to put time into crystallizing your intuitions, and also to a reluctance to put time into re-examination of preconceptions that sometimes are out of date. Brews ohare (talk) 17:57, 22 August 2013 (UTC)
Its not a matter of intuitions, its a matter of sourcing. You have a few of how Wikipedia should be edited which accepts a edge of synthesis that I and others do not accept, per policy. There are also style issues - I will have to make amendments on that if I get a chance tomorrow on the latest focus of your attention. You are doing some good work, but then you go to far with synthesis and quotations, then it get changed then you reinstate and the cycle continues. ----Snowded TALK 20:32, 22 August 2013 (UTC)
I gather that you think I may not egregiously synthesize, but still do so to an unacceptable degree. I'd suggest that such 'borderline' synthesis by its borderline nature (superposing that is how it is) might be viewed by some one way, and by others, another. That determination requires discussion, not pronouncements. Slight rewording, or greater explanation could resolve uncertainties. Just how that can be accomplished needs elucidation of the issues, which may be unclear to all involved. Brews ohare (talk) 14:54, 23 August 2013 (UTC)

MachineElf's warning[edit]

Stop icon

Your recent editing history at Pluralism (philosophy) shows that you are currently engaged in an edit war. Being involved in an edit war can result in your being blocked from editing—especially if you violate the three-revert rule, which states that an editor must not perform more than three reverts on a single page within a 24-hour period. Undoing another editor's work—whether in whole or in part, whether involving the same or different material each time—counts as a revert. Also keep in mind that while violating the three-revert rule often leads to a block, you can still be blocked for edit warring—even if you don't violate the three-revert rule—should your behavior indicate that you intend to continue reverting repeatedly.

To avoid being blocked, instead of reverting please consider using the article's talk page to work toward making a version that represents consensus among editors. See BRD for how this is done. You can post a request for help at a relevant noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases, you may wish to request temporary page protection. Machine Elf 1735 17:59, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

MachineElf: It's hard to believe you are advocating use of the Talk page when I have placed an extensive section about your edits on the Talk page from the beginning, and asked you in my edit comments specifically to explain your changes there. Without result. Apparently you feel that because I made the corrections, your revert to prior erroneous text requires no explanation. Brews ohare (talk) 18:55, 31 August 2013 (UTC)

September 2013[edit]

You currently appear to be engaged in an edit war according to the reverts you have made on Dillemma of Determinism. Users are expected to collaborate with others, to avoid editing disruptively, and to try to reach a consensus rather than repeatedly undoing other users' edits once it is known that there is a disagreement.

Please be particularly aware, Wikipedia's policy on edit warring states:

  1. Edit warring is disruptive regardless of how many reverts you have made; that is to say, editors are not automatically "entitled" to three reverts.
  2. Do not edit war even if you believe you are right.

If you find yourself in an editing dispute, use the article's talk page to discuss controversial changes; work towards a version that represents consensus among editors. You can post a request for help at an appropriate noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases it may be appropriate to request temporary page protection. If you engage in an edit war, you may be blocked from editing.

Snowded TALK 04:40, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

There is no edit war involved here at all. What there actually is is an obstinate editor who refuses to support his personal opinions, and instead removes sourced material without any comment beyond his personal distaste for it. Brews ohare (talk) 04:44, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

Brew's this is your talk page so you are free to believe that and say it. The fact is that other editors can disagree with you (and frequently do on multiple pages), is something you seem unable to accept. I stopped compiling the evidence on personal attacks for Arb enforcement earlier this week as you seemed to have stopped. If you are starting again I'll unhappily go back to that task ----Snowded TALK 04:49, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
Snowded: You sound like an endless tape. You avoid all actual discussion of content to go off on these spiels abort my defects. The endless discussions on Talk pages are all with you, and they are not discussions. They are pleas for you to come to grips with sources and content. Instead you find it easier to frame remarks like those of yours above that are simply screeds about 'my behavior'. Get real. Brews ohare (talk) 11:57, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia is governed by rules on behaviour Brews as you have already discovered. Otherwise on the content issues - how many times have you been backed by other editors? I think you need to get to grip with the rules about sources, original research and synthesis. A little movement by you there would make everyone's lives easier. Otherwise please stop this habit you have developed of ignoring WP:BRD until you are formally warned ----Snowded TALK 13:35, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
On content issues - how many times have you addressed content issues? I think you need to get to grip with the rules about sources, original research and synthesis. A little movement by you there would make everyone's lives easier. Otherwise please stop this habit you have developed of ignoring substance in favor of polemics. Brews ohare (talk) 14:06, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
I fully accept I have never addressed a content issue to your satisfaction Brews. Equally on any RfC where other editors have engaged, the content issue has not gone with you. Whatever, you don't want to listen and you seem set on a course which can only have one end point. Its your call but don't say that several of us didn't try to help ----Snowded TALK 14:13, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

─────────────────────────To see whether I understand the background to your position, Snowded, let me try to state it in my own words. Any statement on a topic A in WP that is acceptable to you is of the form "The third-party source X has discussed topic A and has said the following..." Moreover, any contribution is unacceptable if it is of the form (more or less): "On topic A primary source P1 says S1 and primary source P2 has the view S2 and ..., and these appear to exhaust all the various viewpoints on this topic."

Basically you cannot accept any editor taking responsibility for attempting to summarize a topic by presenting the available sources even though, of course, any other editor is free to add to this presentation, reform it, and to discuss its objectivity (all being undertakings that you eschew as a waste of your time). WP should, in your view, be nothing beyond a brief encapsulation of articles in encyclopedias or text-book like presentations. Anything else is no more than a personal essay (original research) based upon cherry-picked sources (although you would not investigate to identify any missing point of view). How's that?

In my opinion this perspective does not describe a good deal of the articles on WP, its disdain for any useful commentary or contribution is laziness, and its reversal of all contributions not falling within its arbitrary and narrow scope is pure obstructionism. Brews ohare (talk) 15:56, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

Add all of that to your long essays on why wikipedia is broken, you are right etc etc. etc I'm done trying to explain basics to an editor who does not want to listen, has a block history that evidences he does not listen and a RfC success record which confirms whose problem this really is. ----Snowded TALK 16:02, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
OK, totally beside the point - another rant. goodbye. Brews ohare (talk) 19:34, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

November 2013[edit]

You currently appear to be engaged in an edit war according to the reverts you have made on Dilemma of determinism. Users are expected to collaborate with others, to avoid editing disruptively, and to try to reach a consensus rather than repeatedly undoing other users' edits once it is known that there is a disagreement.

Please be particularly aware, Wikipedia's policy on edit warring states:

  1. Edit warring is disruptive regardless of how many reverts you have made; that is to say, editors are not automatically "entitled" to three reverts.
  2. Do not edit war even if you believe you are right.

If you find yourself in an editing dispute, use the article's talk page to discuss controversial changes; work towards a version that represents consensus among editors. You can post a request for help at an appropriate noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases it may be appropriate to request temporary page protection. If you engage in an edit war, you may be blocked from editing.

I'll give you some time to self revert before this gets serious. I too am busy in real life ----Snowded TALK 03:47, 18 November 2013 (UTC)

December 2013[edit]

You have committed multiple breeches of []WP:CIVIL]] on the free will article continuing a pattern from other articles. While I understand you are frustrated that your edits are not gaining support on multiple articles insulting other editors will not improve things. The original Arbcom resolution to block you from Physics articles included reference to both tendentious attitudes, personal attacks and a combative attitude. There is more than enough evidence to demonstrate that you have brought the same negative behavioural pattern to philosophy articles. It is unlikely the community will be tolerant a second time round. In particular you need to realise that when you edits are rejected and no other editor supports you then its time to move on. If you can't change then I suspect you are heading for an extended block or possibly an indef. ----Snowded TALK 19:25, 25 December 2013 (UTC)

You currently appear to be engaged in an edit war according to the reverts you have made on Subject-object problem. Users are expected to collaborate with others, to avoid editing disruptively, and to try to reach a consensus rather than repeatedly undoing other users' edits once it is known that there is a disagreement.

Please be particularly aware, Wikipedia's policy on edit warring states:

  1. Edit warring is disruptive regardless of how many reverts you have made; that is to say, editors are not automatically "entitled" to three reverts.
  2. Do not edit war even if you believe you are right.

If you find yourself in an editing dispute, use the article's talk page to discuss controversial changes; work towards a version that represents consensus among editors. You can post a request for help at an appropriate noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases it may be appropriate to request temporary page protection. If you engage in an edit war, you may be blocked from editing.. ----Snowded TALK 22:52, 29 December 2013 (UTC)

You have now clearly broken all the rules on edit warring. The fact that you don't like the reason given by other editors for rejecting your changes does not entitle you to impose those changes regardless. Final warning in the hope of a new year resolution by you to work with other editors rather than simply imposing your own views ----Snowded TALK 05:19, 1 January 2014 (UTC)

Just to be clear[edit]

If other editors get involved, or you introduce a substantive new argument then I will engage on the talk page of any article (moral responsibility at the moment). However I am no longer prepared to waste time in repeating the same points to someone who does not want to hear an opposing view. Lack of engagement does not imply consent and any change which has not been agreed on the talk page will be reverted (unless it is something minor or routine). So please do not take a no one has commented so I will make the change approach. I may also respond on your talk page rather than an article talk page to avoid wasting other editors's time. ----Snowded TALK 20:45, 26 January 2014 (UTC)

I find these remarks of yours to illustrate only your personal impatience with myself, and unfortunately to lump my contributions together on every topic as identical in your mind because they have in common their coming from me, and without any regard for their content. There is no connection between the failure of the lede in moral responsibility and other topics where we have met. Except possibly your reaction, and threat to remove anything I add of substance, regardless of its merits. Simply an astounding statement of your irresponsible behavior. Brews ohare (talk) 06:26, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
Fully agree that impatience with your behaviour is a significant factor here. You might also note that I qualified my comment on reversion but you seem not to have read it. As ever your capacity or willingness to read and comprehend what other editors are saying to you seems limited. To repeat in different words: if you make a change to any article in the ranges I monitor I will as ever look at it on its merits. If I revert or amend I will generally use the edit summary to indicate a reason. If you have introduced a new argument or other editors engage I will take part in that dissuasion on the talk page. However I am no longer prepared to engage in long conversations with you on the talk page when you simply do not listen. So if you see no reply on the talk page and you take that as license to make the change, it will be reverted. See above where I am very clear on this "any change which has not been agreed on the talk page ..." by which is meant explicit consent. ----Snowded TALK 07:09, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

SO to be clear you are stating your intention to edit war? Hell In A Bucket (talk) 20:13, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

Still upset are we? Am I disturbing the Blocked by Sandstein club? To answer your question no ----Snowded TALK 20:21, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
I'm not upset in the slightest and User:Sandstein has absolutely zero to do with this, I'm merely concerned that you are making threats of disruption specifically "So if you see no reply on the talk page and you take that as license to make the change, it will be reverted" which is in contravention of WP:BRD when you make blanket statements and also a declaration of edit war as your intentions. It's up to you if you want to be disruptive but I just wanted to be clear. Hell In A Bucket (talk) 20:40, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
Pull the other one, its got bells on it :-) You attempted to get Brews recruited to your little ANI campaign against Sanstein and have sniped on and off ever since I opposed you in that. The pair of you have similar length block logs so you are in good company. Oh and you might want to read up on WP:BRD as well as wikipedia policy on editors who carry on conversations interminably on talk pages when they have zero support. ----Snowded TALK 21:06, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
Snowded: This demo of pique is beside the point. However, let me try to explain my problems with your position regarding my editing of philosophy articles. If you can put yourself in an uninvolved position for the moment, and let me refer to you in abstract mode as "Snowded", you might see that from my standpoint my contributions to various articles all are different in content, ranging from the trivial addition of a source to creation of one or another new article (e.g. Quantifier variance, Internal-external distinction, Conceptualization (information science), Holophrastic indeterminacy). In all cases the particular contribution is directed at the topic of the page in question. Thus, from my point of view, a claim by "Snowded" that all my contributions are bunk for the same reasons, doesn't seem to me to be possible. So, hoping you are still in an uninvolved state of mind, you might understand that "Snowded"'s saying that my every attempt has the same deficiencies as every other one that I make, regardless of the topic, doesn't seem fair or adequate.
One way "Snowded" makes the same criticism of all my efforts is to say that all my contributions are the undigested product of Google searches with at best a superficial connection to the topics approached, connected to them only by some keywords used for Google search that isn't really significant to the topic. In my view, if that is how "Snowded" thinks of the contribution, it would be helpful if he provided some argument as to why the proposed contribution is not pertinent. After all, even if the contribution is made by a random by a keyword search, there is clearly a chance that an article found using a keyword could be pertinent. For example, there is a possibility that an article by William James entitled The dilemma of determinism might have a bearing upon the WP article Dilemma of determinism, and maybe that possibility should be discussed?.
In the latest conflict over the lede to Moral responsibility, the Google search criticism doesn't apply - here it is simply pointed out that the lede is defective in at least three ways - a matter worth addressing, I think. A simple rejection by "Snowded" on the basis that brews-ohare is always proposing trash doesn't seem to cut it for me.
Can the real Snowded see the POV of brews_ohare?? Brews ohare (talk) 21:29, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
IMO, Snowded, what is really going on here is that you do not like discussing topics that you don't find worth discussing in the first place. That being so, my advice would be just to leave them be, rather than finding peremptory excuses to curtail discussion that you don't want to engage in. Brews ohare (talk) 21:38, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
What I find comical is that you equate me mentioning asking brews for his opinion on a thread regarding Sandstein's administrative actions (which I had no hand in creating) which have in the past been an issue. I have no clue if he's still firing half cocked because I have not been active in that area of the encyclopedia but I notice you haven't underwent WP:DR or a request for comment recently. So for all of your self righteous wailings you are clearly just as much to blame for the current situation. Hell In A Bucket (talk) 21:41, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
Brews - other editors are not supporting you by engagement in any way. There is a message in that which you seem to want to ignore ----Snowded TALK 04:50, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
That could be the message, of course. However, almost all philosophy articles remain nearly in the condition they were first written many years ago, indicating that apart form changes of 'color' to 'colour' and 'which' to 'that' there is no-one but you to engage with. Pfhorrest showed up for a while, but his real life took him elsewhere, and all he does now is minor corrections and reversions, just like you do. So you are 'everyone' here Snowded, which makes claiming general agreement with your own ideas pretty simple, even if they seldom have any sourcing or logic behind them. Brews ohare (talk) 06:29, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
FWIW after several extended conflicts with you on various articles I'm very wary when I see you've edited something on my watchlist, and on the cursory level I have time to look over them I do see problems, but I just don't have the time to engage here like I used to. I see these things and hope someone else does engage you to make sure that whatever gets added or changed really deserves to be, because I do feel you lack a good understanding of a lot of philosophical material and approach editing the articles from such a place of misunderstanding; and to that extent I am grateful that Snowded at least takes a look and says something so that you don't make problematic edits with carte blanche. But I've also sided with you against Snowded attempting to take a too-eager pair of metaphorical scissors to an article before and excise (or block) too much, so I feel sad that that is the only apparent alternative. I really do wish more editors with varying opinions would get more involved so there was more constructive consensus-building instead of either you having carte blanche or Snowded just standing in your way completely, and I feel guilty for not being able to engage in that kind of constructive mediation that I used to pride myself on. --Pfhorrest (talk) 08:34, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
you have been opposed by far more editors than me Brews as a simple check on your RfCs will show. Your attempt to claim status as a victim has little credibility. Having engaged at length in the early days I have lost patience with your intransigence. If Pfhorrest has time to engage with you again (although you simply repeated yourself last time the attempt was made rather than listening) I'd welcome it. Otherwise I have done my best to give you the benefit of the doubt in letting through some of your edits and I will continue to do so. The real solution is for you to listen to what ore distorts have said in those RfCs and before that on Physica articles. You might also want to listen to the silence which has greeting your attempt to involve others. That is often more significant here than disagreement.----Snowded TALK 08:45, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

─────────────────────────Pfhorrest: I appreciate your comments. I understand very well that an article in philosophy is a nuanced affair, and that striking the right balance involves discussion. I happen to disagree with you sometimes, but that is normal in these circumstances. Snowded: You suffer from a polarized view in general that you are right, always, and do not need to support your opinions any more than does the Pope. So far as listening to others, it is not the only sign of listening to you to immediately agree with you, nor is it a failure to listen when questions about your positions are posed. However, as Pfhorrest has observed, your tendency is simply to block additions and refuse all justification beyond their affront to your sensibilities. Unfortunately also, there are almost zero Wikipedians interested in philosophy, so I'm not so much being ignored as working in a vacuum with yourself. I do recognize that most WP editors are of the 'hit-and-run' school of editing and wish to avoid extended discussion. I personally do not find that approach conducive to good content. This belief on the part of many editors is an outgrowth of impatience with scholarship, and is why WP remains with a reputation of unreliability, mainly consulted briefly to find a few of the ideas out there about a topic, but only laughable as a reputable source.Brews ohare (talk) 15:10, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

The result of your actions, Snowded, as exemplified time and again here on WP, is that philosophy articles on WP will remain cursory and often incorrect, and new pages a rare occurrence. Instead, you could undertake to actually discuss sources and reach a suitable presentation of their content. So far that has never happened. Brews ohare (talk) 15:24, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

Brews, in the early days I tried to discuss sources with you but you didn't listen to any argument that did not support your partial views. It's an experience that a lot of other editors have had with you, including Pfhorrest and others. Sooner or later people give up trying. You are confusing a refusal to constantly repeat objections to your arguments with a refusal to justify objections. Your comments on sources and scholarship are to be honest amusing. You use partial sources largely based on google searches. Something that yet another editor has just pointed out to you on the moral responsibility article.----Snowded TALK 16:22, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Snowded: Vesal has suggested my sources are not pertinent, but has not said why, nor have any sources been introduced by Vesal as support for the claim of a "partial" view. Snowded, you do not understand that sources are to be discussed, not WP editors' personal opinions. Your claim that you once upon a time "tried to discuss sources with me" is a fairy tale. For example, see this. I have, contrary to your remarks, responded in detail whenever you have raised a point, most commonly citing and quoting sources, and as soon as you recognize that your position requires some support from sources, you change the subject. Your remark "You are confusing a refusal to constantly repeat objections to your arguments with a refusal to justify objections" is most charitably to be seen as a case of the pot calling the kettle black. Brews ohare (talk) 16:32, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Brews your replies are quite long sometimes. I'm sure that sometimes the level of detail can be intimidating to other editors too. I know it isn't intentional but maybe that is part of the problem. Hell In A Bucket (talk) 16:46, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
H in a B: Thanks for the observation. Of course you are right about that. I'm not sure that I can overcome this difficulty, which is a result of dealing with editors on WP that cannot understand a briefly stated point. Of course, they don't read a more detailed presentation either, so the problem remains either way. Brews ohare (talk) 16:53, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Brews no one would ever accuse you of not answering in detail, the problem is you don't accept briefly stated points that disagree with you and try and engage people in extended Ad nauseam discussions. Most people gave up on you after the RfC on the definition of Philosophy, by the time we got to Dilemma of Determinism you were simply not accepting contrary positions and just put your points again and again and again. If one tries another way of explaining the point then once faces an accusation of changing the subject. Sorry, but no ones is expected to devoting hours of time to simply repeating points already made. This is especially true when no other editors engage. Move on, learn to compromise a bit. I've pointed you to the wikipedia policy on intransigence before and you need to read it.----Snowded TALK 16:57, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
Snowded: I appreciate that you are trying to offer me advice that I insist too much upon my own contributions, even though they are sourced and well-argued. You point out that you (and many others I am sure) are not interested in well-sourced and argued contributions, or in development of good content where that requires some effort, but prefer short statements of editor beliefs. Got it. Don't think that is the way to go, though. Brews ohare (talk) 17:21, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I think we are all interested in well-sourced, but also balanced sources together cogent arguments that admit the possibility that you might be wrong and are not repeated endlessly after they have been rejected. You seem to what to assert that while you are using well sourced content, anyone who opposes you is merely expressing a belief. As long as you think like that you will not get out of the hole you have been digging for yourself.----Snowded TALK 17:31, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

─────────────────────────A little look at our engagements shows assertion of Snowded's beliefs is indeed your modus operandi. I wouldn't generalize that behavior to everyone. Brews ohare (talk) 19:34, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

Examples of other editors responses[edit]

I'll put together more of these for you as I get time to go through the various philosophy articles you have edited. They all indicate a general pattern of response from multiple editors ----Snowded TALK 06:29, 30 January 2014 (UTC)

  • 29th January 2014: "I can't believe there's this much confusion over a simple linguistic issue, except that you've had this kind of confusion over simple language over and over again on other articles" ..... "Someone else please engage Brews here, I really don't want to be drawn into a hundred pages of explaining the meaning of a simple word to him again". --Pfhorrest
  • Snowded explains his policy: instant reversion without commentary, and an exhortation to all to follow his pattern of avoiding all discussion based upon sources.

March 2014[edit]

A request concerning you has been made for Arbitration enforcement ----Snowded TALK 07:25, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

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Help with Enaction (philosophy)[edit]

Glad to help with above as you ask, Brews. Interesting talk page btw! TonyClarke (talk) 00:11, 31 March 2014 (UTC)


How does one cope with superdeterminism?—Machine Elf 1735 04:48, 28 March 2014 (UTC)

Gary Cziko[edit]

Hello, Brews ohare. I thought I should inform you that Snowded is proposing to delete Gary Cziko, an article which you started. See the article's talk page. FreeKnowledgeCreator (talk) 03:50, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

No, if I was doing that I would have proposed deletion. I asked which of the tests of notability this one matched as its not obvious ----Snowded TALK 06:52, 1 May 2014 (UTC)
Snowden I wondered when you would show up, it was too nice a day to not have something go wrong with it I guess. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 12:52, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

Phi Cop[edit]

Here you make a "repeated invitation" concerning my "dominance" of the "moribund" philosophy project/articles. I know you've made similar remarks at the WikiProject, OR, ANI and elsewhere. Are article talk pages about all that's left?—Machine Elf 1735 17:34, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

MachineElf: Guess what - it's not about you. Brews ohare (talk) 17:37, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

But you say: "The philosophy work project is moribund. As a result of this apathy a few editors like Snowded and MachineElf dominate the field and insist upon their own agendas." That is about me.—Machine Elf 1735 06:17, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
Would you like to sign up for WP:WikiProject Philosophy/participants?—Machine Elf 1735 06:54, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
MachineElf: The fact that you and Snowded are virtually the only editors active in philosophy is not directly about you two. It is about the lack of a more general interest. As for signing up, putting my name on this list isn't going to inspire more activity among others or by me. I do wonder what happened that those who started so many of the philosophy articles stopped contributing to WP a year or so later.
It is not just a philosophy thing. The number of participants on WP actually contributing new articles or large additions to articles has fallen steadily after 2007. Whatever its cause, my conclusion after looking at article histories is that WP is failing to engineer a climate for cooperative shaping of contributions, and has instead become little more than a beleaguered action against vandalism. Brews ohare (talk) 14:40, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
My guess is that a good deal of the problem can be traced to (i) lifetime appointment of Administrators without any mechanism to insure responsibility in their actions, and (ii) anonymity of contributors whose avatars become WP personalities of dubious character, and (iii) a conservativeness toward modifying policy that amounts to rigidity and the impossibility of improvements. Brews ohare (talk) 15:33, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
Hi Brews, long time no see. My guess is that there is no problem at all. I don't think one should focus on contributors and their problems, but rather think in terms of—bear with me—available subjects to either create new articles about, or to add large additions about in their article when they already have one. With each newly created article and with each large content addition, the number of such subjects naturally declines. Up to 2007 there was a sufficient supply of such subjects still allowing for exponential growth. Around 2007 that changed and now it has stabilised to about 1000/day, which can be defined as "the number of daily new subjects with sufficient potential notability for Wikipedia". So the number of new articles per unit of time stopped growing. So what? It's a basic law of populations (contributors) thriving on renewable limited resources (uncovered subjects). Exponential growth cannot continue forever. Looks pretty non-contributor-driven—and certainly non-conspiratorial—to me. - DVdm (talk) 18:13, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
DVdm: The emphasis here is not at all upon contributors and their problems, but upon the dearth of contributors. As for the 'nothing-is-wrong;-it's-just-that-exponential-growth-is-impossible-to-maintain' theory of WP's slow demise - well it just doesn't fit that model. There is a sharp change in the performance graphs about 2007 that doesn't fit a sigmoid. In any event, the WP-is-just-fine scenario is not true to life. Brews ohare (talk) 21:20, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
Your emphasis on "(i) lifetime appointment, ... (ii) anonymity of contributors... and (iii) a conservativeness..." clearly resorts under contributors and their problems. And of course a sigmoid is the last curve one would expect. You completely missed the point. You were talking about new articles here. As long as old, uncovered subjects aren't exhausted, the number of newly created articles can and will easily overshoot the number of available new potential subjects. As soon as the old subjects are exhausted (2007), there must be a fallback that, in turn, gradually settles down to an equilibrium. We don't need to solve a differential equation for this. Look at the current curve, up to Feb 2014. It's a natural classic, and the only one possible. And in any event, the WP-is-just-fine scenario is very true to me Face-smile.svg. - DVdm (talk) 22:00, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
DVdm: Apparently we don't agree, and there isn't the data available to really dig into this. Which is one more symptom of WP's lack of vigor in keeping tabs on things, watching the data and publicly discussing its implications. In the absence of careful attention all we have is opinion, and the easiest response is complacency. I'm of the opinion that WP will continue to let things slide, and it's unlikely that a competitor, lacking WP's wonderful opportunity, will supplant it anytime soon. That is a major misfortune for humankind, an opportunity squandered. Brews ohare (talk) 22:34, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
See this figure on the right with an overshoot, "due to over-reproduction in response to the initial abundance of resources". Compare the scatter graph with the time scatter graph of new articles per day of the current data, or even already with your own graph here (top right, blue). - DVdm (talk) 11:21, 5 May 2014 (UTC)
Thanks for the stats. The article size stats are interesting, with the average article running 3.6kB and about 55% of articles with <2kB of words. Even a little knock-off like Idée fixe (psychology) runs over 21kB, so most of these articles are puny indeed. Articles with .5 - 2 kB of readable text aren't significant in my mind. Even counting all these minor articles the new article count is declining over time, having peaked in 2006-2007. Likewise for the number of Wikipedians with a lifetime edit content >10. The number making >5 edits/month and >100 edits/month aren't too useful without knowing the size of the edits. Just adding a source or a sentence takes over 0.5 kB, so smaller edits are inconsequential in adding to an article. And edits involving policing of vandalism activity or hit-and-run one-line edit summary reverts are not excluded. So the edit/month stats are not very useful.
It seems you are suggesting with the biology stats that there is a variety of behavior in population growth depending upon 'environment', which can't be argued. In fact, my point is that WP should be looking at its own environmental factors and trying to implement processes to insure they improve over time, rather than insisting everything is just dandy. Brews ohare (talk) 14:37, 5 May 2014 (UTC)
Of course there's always the possibility that daphnia too suffer from irresponsible administrator conspiracies... - DVdm (talk) 15:47, 5 May 2014 (UTC)
DVdm: I have not suggested any conspiracy or irresponsibility: rather incompetence, inability, inattention, inflexibility, and unaccountability. Brews ohare (talk) 14:13, 6 May 2014 (UTC)
Not oR. A conspiracy oF administrator irresponsibility. It's how I interpreted "... lifetime appointment of Administrators without any mechanism to insure responsibility in their actions". - DVdm (talk) 14:32, 6 May 2014 (UTC)
Don't understand - absence of a mechanism to insure responsibility surely doesn't suggest a conspiracy aimed toward irresponsibility? Brews ohare (talk) 18:41, 6 May 2014 (UTC)

Reference Errors on 18 May[edit]

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Hey Brews, can you help clear the essay tag? Mereology makes me a bit queasy... thanks.—Machine Elf 1735 05:23, 25 May 2014 (UTC)

How about a new article? Maybe Complementarity (philosophy) with that material you wanted to include in the mind-body problem awhile back?—Machine Elf 1735 15:58, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

May 2014[edit]

You currently appear to be engaged in an edit war according to the reverts you have made on Enactivism. Users are expected to collaborate with others, to avoid editing disruptively, and to try to reach a consensus rather than repeatedly undoing other users' edits once it is known that there is a disagreement.

Please be particularly aware, Wikipedia's policy on edit warring states:

  1. Edit warring is disruptive regardless of how many reverts you have made; that is to say, editors are not automatically "entitled" to three reverts.
  2. Do not edit war even if you believe you are right.

If you find yourself in an editing dispute, use the article's talk page to discuss controversial changes; work towards a version that represents consensus among editors. You can post a request for help at an appropriate noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases it may be appropriate to request temporary page protection. If you engage in an edit war, you may be blocked from editing. WP:BRD is very clear. You do not have the right to determine if objections to your edits are acceptable or not. You are required to reach consensus. try addressing the objection rather than ignoring it or making silly accusations. I've done my best to work with you on this article, allowing and modifying a lot of material. However you see unable to cope unless you are allowed to insert any material you think is appropriate. That is edit warring. ----Snowded TALK 16:06, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

It's hardly an edit war when you provide no basis for your actions. I am reverting vandalism. Brews ohare (talk) 16:17, 26 May 2014 (UTC).
Ah, so now if experienced editors disagree with you they are vandals? Old habits coming back Brews. I'll deal with this tomorrow, I have other work to do today. I strongly suggest you reflect, self-revert and engage with the arguments. Just because an author creates two concepts it does not follow that the article on each concept requires extended discussion of the other. You are, again failing to understand [[WP:COATRACK|scope limits and you are I extended breech of WP:CIVIL. Shame I thought things were improving. I'll leave it overnight to give you time to think ----Snowded TALK 16:34, 26 May 2014 (UTC)
So now you wear the hat of 'experienced editor'? You are not. You are an experienced 'reverter'. You seldom contribute anything of consequence to articles and have never actually introduced a new article yourself in any academic area. The waving about of WP policy names like WP:COATRACK is not helpful without some actual basis and identification of the problematic material. Claiming that mention of autopoiesis or enactive interfaces is 'coat-racking' the article on enactivism is something that has to be supported, and in fact the literature on enactivism is full of references to autopoiesis and the literature on enactive interfaces has useful discussions of enactivism, as cited in the material you dispute. Brews ohare (talk) 16:47, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

Notice of Edit warring noticeboard discussion[edit]

Information icon Hello. This message is being sent to inform you that there is currently a discussion involving you at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Edit warring regarding a possible violation of Wikipedia's policy on edit warring. The thread is Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Edit warring#User:Brews ohare reported by User:FyzixFighter (Result: ). Thank you.

Based on this report, you have breached WP:3RR. Please comment at the report why you think you should not be sanctioned.--Bbb23 (talk) 20:42, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

May 2014[edit]

Stop icon with clock
You have been blocked from editing for a period of 48 hours for edit warring and violating the three-revert rule, as you did at Enactivism. Once the block has expired, you are welcome to make useful contributions. If you think there are good reasons why you should be unblocked, you may appeal this block by adding the following text below this notice: {{unblock|reason=Your reason here ~~~~}}. However, you should read the guide to appealing blocks first.

During a dispute, you should first try to discuss controversial changes and seek consensus. If that proves unsuccessful, you are encouraged to seek dispute resolution, and in some cases it may be appropriate to request page protection.  Bbb23 (talk) 01:21, 27 May 2014 (UTC)

So much for commenting, eh? I should know better. Brews ohare (talk) 05:19, 27 May 2014 (UTC)
If you had ignored my request for comments, I would have blocked you.--Bbb23 (talk) 00:59, 28 May 2014 (UTC)
Hi Bbb: I understand your action as simply an enforcement of the 3rr rule. I'm OK with that, but I don't know if your statement that we (actually I) "showed no insight into their misconduct" simply refers to this legal technicality or to something broader? In particular, if you mean that my engagement with Snowded shows a lack of understanding of Talk page activity, maybe that is worth examining further. Brews ohare (talk) 14:41, 28 May 2014 (UTC)
I don't know where you want me to put this comment, above or below your links - feel free to move it if it suits you. My block had nothing to do with "Talk page activity".--Bbb23 (talk) 14:49, 28 May 2014 (UTC)
OK; However, as an Administrator you might want to think a bit about what the underlying cause of an 'edit war' might be, and whether WP has adequate ability to diagnose or to remedy such matters in some general fashion. For example, an edit war often is an expression of frustration, and one such frustration is reaching agreement over what should go into an article. One might hope that a Talk-page discussion would lead to agreement. That probably would happen more often than it does now if Administrators took an interest in focusing the parties upon sources and redirecting them from disputes over each others' opinions. That is, Admins could try to underline WP policies about Talk page engagement instead of simply acting as traffic cops citing meter violations. Brews ohare (talk) 18:01, 28 May 2014 (UTC)

December 2014[edit]

Stop icon

Your recent editing history at Talk:Negative feedback shows that you are currently engaged in an edit war. To resolve the content dispute, please do not revert or change the edits of others when you get reverted. Instead of reverting, please use the article's talk page to work toward making a version that represents consensus among editors. The best practice at this stage is to discuss, not edit-war. See BRD for how this is done. If discussions reach an impasse, you can then post a request for help at a relevant noticeboard or seek dispute resolution. In some cases, you may wish to request temporary page protection.

Being involved in an edit war can result in your being blocked from editing—especially if you violate the three-revert rule, which states that an editor must not perform more than three reverts on a single page within a 24-hour period. Undoing another editor's work—whether in whole or in part, whether involving the same or different material each time—counts as a revert. Also keep in mind that while violating the three-revert rule often leads to a block, you can still be blocked for edit warring—even if you don't violate the three-revert rule—should your behavior indicate that you intend to continue reverting repeatedly. Binksternet (talk) 05:35, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Binksternet: What is your purpose here in applying main page 3r rules to my reversion of illegal collapse of Talk page discussion by non-participants in the exchange with Dicklyon. It is none of their business. If they have something to say about these sources, they can join in. But they don't. And if they have no interest in the exchange, they can ignore it. Brews ohare (talk) 06:12, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
We're done. Collapsing the discussion is best. Dicklyon (talk) 06:21, 6 December 2014 (UTC)
All right then, Dick. I thought you might have more to add. Brews ohare (talk) 06:44, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

Notice of Edit warring noticeboard discussion[edit]

Information icon Hello. This message is being sent to inform you that there is currently a discussion involving you at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Edit warring regarding a possible violation of Wikipedia's policy on edit warring. Thank you. Binksternet (talk) 06:39, 6 December 2014 (UTC)

It looks like you broke WP:3RR with your edits at Talk:Negative feedback. But it seems possible that you have stopped. You may be able to avoid a block if you will agree to abstain from talk page reverts for the next seven days. Thanks, EdJohnston (talk) 03:32, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Ed. No problem. I'll make no talk page reverts. Brews ohare (talk) 04:13, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
Please do not refactor Dicklyon's talk page entry as you did here to give it the false header "Removal of link". Dick is pretty ticked off about that: he reverted your subsequent additions to just before this refactoring. Binksternet (talk) 10:26, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Reverting actual text on talk page is a no-no. I guess Dick knows that. Brews ohare (talk) 14:10, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

The violation was your biased header which made it look like Dick was arguing your case. At WP:RTP it says that you should avoid changing the meaning, which applies to you. And it says you should avoid making others angrier in heated situations such as that talk page. Binksternet (talk) 16:34, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
The notion that the header changed Dick's meaning is silly nonsense. The header was "Removal of link", which is a neutral statement of what was done by Dick, and what was the subject of the following few exchanges. There is no need, Binksternet, to invent stuff. Brews ohare (talk) 17:28, 7 December 2014 (UTC)
The insertion of new topic heading and moving/unindenting my reply to your previous comment to look like the opening comment of the section definitely changed my meaning. Dicklyon (talk) 06:59, 8 December 2014 (UTC)
OK, inserting a header to identify the subject of subsequent remarks bothered Dick. That made him so mad he reverted talk page text in violation of established rules.. I fixed this by adding a more complete argument against his inappropriate deletion of sources. Probably that won't please him either. But this time he won't have a pretext for Talk page reversion of stuff he can't find words to discuss. Brews ohare (talk) 16:44, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Editing Signal Flow Graph[edit]

It looks like we are both editing right now. I'll stand down for a while.Constant314 (talk)

Thanks for the help so far. Think I've finished for now. Brews ohare (talk) 15:32, 11 January 2015 (UTC)
It looks like we just flip-flopped on whether the Solving linear equations with signal-flow graphs section should be under Examples or not. I think that it should, because it is just another use of a SFG. I don't think it is special enough or important enough to have its own section. I'll leave it be for a while, but would like to have your thoughts.Constant314 (talk) 17:02, 11 January 2015 (UTC)
Constant: My thoughts are different. In my view the subject of representing equations is all that distinguishes flow graphs from digraphs, and so is almost the entire subject, not just an application of it. Brews ohare (talk) 19:09, 11 January 2015 (UTC)
It seems to me that the introduction makes it clear that the SFG represents equations.Constant314 (talk) 19:31, 11 January 2015 (UTC)
Yes, it does. And that is what I have said here. So don't we agree? Brews ohare (talk) 20:36, 11 January 2015 (UTC)
I think we only disagree on where the section Solving linear equations with signal-flow graphs goes in the hierarchy. I think it is just another example and ought to be in the examples section. But, I won't change it again unless you agree.Constant314 (talk) 20:49, 11 January 2015 (UTC)

─────────────────────────It seems a signal flow graph always is associated with a set of equations (otherwise the graph isn't a signal flow graph but is a more general form of digraph), and at least in the linear case, is instrumental in using these equations (e.g. Mason's rule). So why relegate this aspect which pervades the entire subject to a mere 'example'? Brews ohare (talk) 21:09, 11 January 2015 (UTC)

Article on the relationship between mathematics and physics[edit]

Hello, professor Brews ohare. I have noticed that you have contributed a lot to articles in physics, mathematics and philosophy, and now I thought that maybe you would be interested in editing the article Relationship between mathematics and physics. Well... just an invitation :). By the way, you have made very good contributions to this project, congratulations! Best wishes. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:02, 23 February 2015 (UTC)

Evan Thompson[edit]

The thoughts of minor academics belong in their articles and the glowing account you added to The Selfish Gene should be removed and some of it placed at Evan Thompson. I'm distracted at the moment so won't do that now, but articles on Dawkins are repeatedly mistreated as coatracks for the views of people few have heard of. The topic of the article is the book, with brief mentions of its reception. If you believe notability would be satisfied, please write an article about the debates surrounding "selfish genes" and move Thompson's views to there. Johnuniq (talk) 23:12, 27 February 2015 (UTC)

Where does your evaluation of Evan Thompson as a "minor academic" come from? And his discussion of Dawkins in Mind in Life is thoroughly sourced, providing a well supported critique of Dawkins' work. Brews ohare (talk) 04:58, 28 February 2015 (UTC)

Arbitration enforcement request 2[edit]

Your recent editing is being discussed here:


--JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 20:12, 31 March 2015 (UTC)

Nice to meet you![edit]

I really hope they don't kick you off Wikipedia. I particularly liked your analysis about the growth and decline of Wikipedia:..."many new Wikipedians lost interest in continuing with WP, possibly because they faced an upsurge in activists". I 100% agree. Editing is so hard now. You make a well sourced article contribution and it just gets reverted and when you discuss it you find you are discussing it with people who aren't exactly Einsteins. Or if they are, they prefer to hide it. Often they are just activists of a sort pursuing a particular agenda. We aren't allowed say that of course, because that would breach the requirement to assume good faith. In fact, if we had frank discussions in good faith on the talk pages, we would, ironically, get blocked for breaching the 'assume good faith' rules. Unless of course we are in an alliance of Editors. If you can't win, join them is what some say. I've asked another editor today about tips on how to get into some sort of an alliance and not be a lone edior any more. The successful activists seem to be in alliances. Finally, I'm afraid your areas of interest and mine are not the same and it's unlikely I could ever understand the sort of topics you are interested in. Way above my head. Good luck! Frenchmalawi (talk) 14:50, 3 April 2015 (UTC)

Arbitration enforcement warning[edit]

Pursuant to this arbitration enforcement request you are warned that your topic ban is from all pages (and making any edit related to those pages) and from edits about physics and physics-related mathematics, broadly construed. See the related discussion in the request regarding the extent of the topic ban. You are further warned that any further breaches of your topic ban will likely result in an extended block. This warning will be logged and may be referenced a reason to issue a block for a further violation, you may appeal this warning by following the instructions here. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 06:15, 4 April 2015 (UTC)


Invitation to Snowded[edit]

The action needed is to address sources instead of behavior. Brews ohare (talk) 15:10, 7 May 2015 (UTC)

Well you in a minority of one in thinking that Brews. How many more editors have to chime in before you finally admit you might be wrong? Or is ANI and yet another ban the only route? --Snowded TALK 15:59, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
WP policy supports the purpose of the encyclopedia, which is to present what reputable sources have to say on various topics. Naturally such presentation involves some discussion of this content and how it should best be presented. Neither of these activities has recently been your focus. Brews ohare (talk) 17:12, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
And as you have been repeatedly told by many editors both on Philosophy pages and on Policy pages it does not support your personal synthesis of those sources. If you want to write essays on Philosophy please enrol in your local community college. ----Snowded TALK 17:17, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
Of course, synthesis is contrary to WP:SYN. However, you don't bother to back up your assertions that a violation has occurred. You yourself simply say that it is a waste of time to demonstrate that a source has been misreprented because only third-party sources matter, and no source I have cited is suitable. That way you can avoid any conversation at all. I don't think this is how to handle such matters. Your response to this protest is to claim misbavior on my part and threaten ANI. You will not even deign to formulate your own sourced opinion, preferring simply to revert all proposals with unsupported claims of synthesis. Perhaps, even though this is your position, you can understand that you are basically making yourself judge and jury over content? Can existing content survive this same idiosyncratic scrutiny? Brews ohare (talk) 18:30, 7 May 2015 (UTC)

19:25, 7 May 2015 (diff| hist) . . (-927)‎ . . User talk:Snowded ‎ (You're trolling Brews. I've explained it a hundred times or more. You are just not listening or are incapable of listening.)

I see you have deleted my summary of your position which I hoped might lead to some more constructive mutual understanding. I think the point you want to make is that an approach based upon WP:SECONDARY sources made by a novice to a topic area will select sources that are not the recognized definitive sources, but sources found by methods like Google book searches or Google scholar searches. That is a good point, and in my own areas of expertise I know the definitive sources in my library are not available on line, and that Google searches in some cases do not have any search terms that will turn them up. In fact, even the isbn number will not turn them up on Google, although they will show up on Amazon. Google has not scanned them, and for Google they do not exist.
We could attempt to come to grips with this issue. I think two things are obvious. First, non-ideal sources will show up. Second, no WP editor should be forced to accept some editor's paraphrase of an unavailable source, because even experts are occasionally given to selective understanding of sources they read. So how are these problems to be handled?
You have in mind this solution (correct me if I misunderstand). Find some reputable on-line accessible sources and confine WP articles to summaries of these sources. In my opinion this solution is very limiting. First, you and I may not agree on the subset of acceptable sources. For example, you have been known to object to The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, and prefer something like The Oxford Companion to Free Will. Both of these sources contain invited single-author (sometimes dual author) articles by philosophers actively publishing in their subject area. The question arises as to why either of these sources is preferable to a reputable monograph that summarizes a field, like Evan Thompson's 'Mind in Life'.
The practical question for the two of us is: "Can we analyse this dilemma cogently?" I see no reason why we cannot. I am not close-eyed to the difficulties, and the issue is not how stubborn and hard-nosed I am on this subject. Can you engage? Brews ohare (talk) 02:54, 8 May 2015 (UTC)

03:48, 8 May 2015 (diff | hist) . . (-2,336)‎ . . User talk:Snowded ‎ (Ive waster too much time on you Brews. Every attempt to get you to collaborate falls in the face if your intransigence over synthesis. Now go away)

Proposed topic ban from philosophy for Brews ohare[edit]


jps (talk) 13:25, 10 May 2015 (UTC)

Advice- Howdy Brews, I haven't a clue about philosophy. But, I have been through turbulant times on Wikipedia. IMHO, you should accept a topic-ban & agree with what those editors (who are pushing for your removal) are posting at AN. To do otherwise, may lead to a site-ban & trust me, you don't want that. GoodDay (talk) 16:09, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
Brews I gave you a life line which would remove all topic bans if you would accept other restrictions. Its there if you want it. GoodDay will hopefully confirm I did my best to help him even though when we got to this stage ----Snowded TALK 16:30, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
Confirmation given :) GoodDay (talk) 16:55, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
I am resigning from philosophy. It is idiotic to continue when even a simple thing like providing citations for the definition of terms like 'nomological' are met with rabid responses. Brews ohare (talk) 16:36, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
Recommend you post your resignation at AN. PS- My reason for sticking my nose in here, is because I'm a member of WP:RETENTION. We like to hang onto as many editors as possible :) GoodDay (talk) 16:55, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
I don't know what AN is. Got a link? Brews ohare (talk) 20:41, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
It's the Administrator's noticeboard. The link is at the top of this discussion. GoodDay (talk) 22:21, 12 May 2015 (UTC)

I have posted my withdrawal there and elsewhere. GoodDay, I have a number of essays here that suggest changes that could help with editor retention. Perhaps you would comment upon their talk pages? Brews ohare (talk) 16:08, 13 May 2015 (UTC)


Per discussion at AN I have indefinitely blocked your account. Although I did not quite find enough consensus for a site ban, it was clear that a further topic ban would not resolve the issues with your editing behavior and that this would only transplant the issue to your next field of interest. On this basis I have enacted an indefinite block. Should you wish to appeal this decision you can post an unblock using {{unblock|your reason here}} but i would strongly advise that if you were to do this you need to study the reasons why other editors are finding your contributions disruptive and include a clear and compelling argument of how your behavior will change to resolve this. Spartaz Humbug! 23:00, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

Harsh, but what the community desired. Hope all works out for the best for WP. Brews ohare (talk) 00:13, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

Brews you are a class act. I've seen the debacle over the years and I've not seen you lash out in the manner of many here. Hat's off to you. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 00:45, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
Hell in a Bucket: Thanks for that agreeable goodbye. I have been blocked for my efforts to contribute to the article Free will, efforts that offended the dominant editors of that article, not because of inaccuracy or lack of sources, but precisely the opposite, because of these editors' impatience with sourced viewpoints and refusal to discuss sources. Brews ohare (talk) 18:58, 17 May 2015 (UTC)
For the record, "editors' impatience with sourced viewpoints and refusal to discuss sources" is what you always say when you are unable to come to any kind of agreement or working relationship with others who interpret sources differently from you. That impatience is the flip side of your own infinite patience in pushing your own idiosyncratic interpretations, which is why you keep getting the community so wound up they they have to rise up and ban you. Good luck in your off-WP endeavors. Dicklyon (talk) 20:29, 31 December 2015 (UTC)
Dick: To serve the record, some actual diffs as evidence would be more helpful than your idea of a summary. IMO, the facts are that the editors involved in my banishment explicitly refused to discuss sources. In effect, they set themselves up as experts beyond any need to rely upon sourced opinion [a clear violation of WP policies], and argued that my requests that they do so constituted tendentious editing. Brews ohare (talk) 22:55, 9 February 2016 (UTC)
  • I have removed the Free will "article" below. This is not an appropriate use of your Talk page while blocked.--Bbb23 (talk) 14:26, 24 May 2015 (UTC)
Bbb3: I will instead simply link the CZ article on Free Will. Personally, I think your interference here is unwarranted censorship of views that are not public on the WP site. Brews ohare (talk) 14:50, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

Link to article on 'free will'[edit]

I am linking a CZ article which represents what I think the article Free will should more resemble, namely a broad discussion that includes philosophy, but is not restricted to philosophy. The WP article Free will fails the recognize the breadth of the subject and is written from the narrow perspective of logical connections rather than an exploration of human experience. The first paragraph of the linked article, in contrast, introduces 'free will' as a subjective phenomenon, rather than one of many definitions that are hotly debated because none of them exactly fits the experience. However, Talk:Free will continues to debate definitions, and my absence there seems not to have led to any resolution of futile debate over a 'right' choice. Brews ohare (talk) 14:50, 24 May 2015 (UTC)

Dilemma of determinism[edit]

Snowded and also Spartaz have removed Piotrniz invitation to visit the deletion review for the deleted articles about the "standard argument for free will" and also the "dilemma of free will". The deletion discussion is found here and has no substance whatsoever. A Citizendium version of the Dilemma is found here and for the Standard argument is found here. Spartaz says this removal of the invitation is necessary as it is canvassing by Piotrniz, even though I am blocked from participation on WP and, in addition, I am the principal author of these pages. When I chose to put this comment back up, Snowded removed it again, this time threatening me with a site ban. Having already achieved my removal from WP discussion, there is apparently still concern that somehow my talk page will upset matters. Go figure. Brews ohare (talk) 00:16, 30 May 2015 (UTC)

Brews, don't give them the excuse to take away your talkpage access. It will just be one final indignation that you don't need or deserve. Hell in a Bucket (talk) 03:07, 30 May 2015 (UTC)

Subject-object problem[edit]

The article Subject-object problem has been deleted on the supposition that it is merely a paste-up of randomly selected quotes from Google unrelated to any topic recognized in philosophy.1 It can be found on Citzendium here. Brews ohare (talk) 18:49, 30 May 2015 (UTC)

The elimination of this article on the basis that it is a topic unknown to philosophy (as if a role in philosophy were the only justification for an article on this topic) can be assessed using these quotations:

"two thoughts need balancing. The one is that many aspects of our world are independent of us; the other is that that the world is somehow constituted by or dependent upon our conceptual scheme or point of view."
—Simon Blackburn: Enchanting Views p. 14
"There is a common philosophical conceive of the realm of belief and attitude as clearly distinct from the world of objects and events. This separation is typically presented in terms of a distinction between subjective and objective ..."
—J. E. Malpas: Donald Davidson and the Mirror of Meaning: Holism, Truth, Interpretation, p. 192
"We consciously experience many different things, and we can think about the things that we experience. But it is not so easy to experience or think about consciousness itself...Does the world have an observer-independent existence (realism) or does its existence depend in some way on the operation of our own minds (idealism)? Is knowledge of the world 'public' and 'objective', and knowledge of our own experience 'private' and 'subjective'?"
—Max Velmans: Understanding Consciousness, p. 3
"It is as if the brain has to impose a pattern of its own, even if there is no objective pattern present."
—Oliver Sacks: Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain, p. 265
"All these things sufficiently show that everyone judges things by the constitution of his brain, or rather accepts the affections of his imagination in the place of things"
—Benedict de Spinoza: Ethics in "Great Books of the Western World", p. 372
"Every act of perception is to some degree an act of creation"
—Gerald Maurice Edelman: Building a picture of the brain in "The Brain", p. 55
"It is well known that one sees with the brain rather than with the eye, and thus the brain tends to 'see' the familiar and expected."
—Paul Craddock: Scientific investigation of copies, fakes and forgeries, pp.22, 23
"For the eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend."
—Robertson Davies: Tempest-Tost, p. 107

Brews ohare (talk) 15:16, 10 February 2016 (UTC)

Invitation to a research survey[edit]

Hello Brews ohare, I am Qi Wu, a computer science MS student at the University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. Currently, we are working on a project studying the main article and sub article relationship in a purpose of better serving the Wikipedia article structure. It would be appreciated if you could take 4-5 minutes to finish the survey questions. Thanks in advance! We will not collect any of your personally information.

Thank you for your time to participate this survey. Your response is important for us!

ArbCom Elections 2016: Voting now open![edit]

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Nomination of Physical determinism for deletion[edit]

A discussion is taking place as to whether the article Physical determinism is suitable for inclusion in Wikipedia according to Wikipedia's policies and guidelines or whether it should be deleted.

The article will be discussed at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Physical determinism until a consensus is reached, and anyone is welcome to contribute to the discussion. The nomination will explain the policies and guidelines which are of concern. The discussion focuses on high-quality evidence and our policies and guidelines.

Users may edit the article during the discussion, including to improve the article to address concerns raised in the discussion. However, do not remove the article-for-deletion notice from the top of the article. JohnBlackburnewordsdeeds 18:15, 26 January 2017 (UTC)

Software you used to create File:MOSFET Structure.png?[edit]

Hi! I was wondering what software you used to create File:MOSFET Structure.png? I need to use some software to draw my microelectronic substrates in 3D.... Thanks! --Blue.painting (talk) 18:29, 22 June 2019 (UTC)