User talk:Elen of the Roads

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Just found what impressed us[edit]

Hi, This is an old talk, I know : however your logic about the Van and the Angora cats (in Turkey) being the same breed is unusual to see, however you are right! Warm regards from Turkey, from a member of The Angora Cat Association.--Ankara Kedisi 07:12, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

I wonder if anyone got your reference....[edit]

You're the second person I know of who's read the Lensman series. MSJapan (talk) 22:30, 5 November 2012 (UTC)

User:Orangemike is another. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:05, 7 November 2012 (UTC)
And I of course am a third. They were pretty dire. Rich Farmbrough, 20:10, 11 December 2012 (UTC).

And the answer is[edit]

907 mainspace edits. Nobody Ent 22:51, 5 November 2012 (UTC)

Your post made me curious, so I went and looked myself up. I seem to have 7954 mainspace edits. I had no idea I had made that many. KillerChihuahua?!? 22:58, 5 November 2012 (UTC)

Just a quick thanks for quick Oversighting. --Anonymous209.6 (talk) 03:59, 6 November 2012 (UTC)

Infobox dispute[edit]

You once mediated a similar infobox dispute. Can you be objective at Stephen H. Wendover as to whether the infobox is a distraction to the reader, or is helpful to the reader? Both arguments are valid and really more an issue of aesthetics, so a third opinion ... well, a fourth in this case, would be helpful. --Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) (talk) 22:00, 6 November 2012 (UTC)

The Signpost: 05 November 2012[edit]

Mail call[edit]

I've dropped you a line. WormTT(talk) 16:07, 7 November 2012 (UTC)

More MMA Socks[edit]

Just to let you know some more MMA SPA's have shown up, for example Nurple is the New Purple (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) and Noahco (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) along with Jfgsloeditor (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) for which there is an open WP:ANI here. Mtking (edits) 17:18, 7 November 2012 (UTC)

Got 'em all three, and Noahco's kid brother User:Blio sucks. Nurple and Jfgsloeditor are BStudent0 socks, Noahco is editing on proxies now blocked. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:32, 7 November 2012 (UTC)
Nest of 'em?? Us socks come in drawers, not "nests"! Jester of the court (NE sock) 22:37, 7 November 2012 (UTC)
Thanks, I will suggest at the ANI that the 3 pages he created should be WP:G5'ed in line with WP:DENY, I can't believe any of the other !voters will object. Mtking (edits) 23:01, 7 November 2012 (UTC)

Male call[edit]

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Nobody Ent 02:46, 8 November 2012 (UTC)

Edit war[edit]

You showed interest in the discussion at Talk:Stephen H. Wendover the other day. As an admin, could you look at this again? Mr. Norton is currently starting an edit war over the infobox, claiming consensus, although the discussion on the talk page IMO shows that there is none. Kraxler (talk) 01:07, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

First track off The Poison[edit]

Hello! I've noticed that the name of the first song off the album The Poison is wrong. The real name is "Intro", not "Intro ... My Lifestyle". I tried to change it, but there are two users who do not stop reverting my edits without consulting. So I've been involved in an edit war. An unregistered user changed back the name several times and he added a reference from, but I think that is not a reliable source. Moreover, I have added some references to the talk page such as the official BFMV website, itunes, BBC and even a picture of the album.

This is so frustrating! I have that CD in my house (I bought it a few years ago because I was a big fan of Bullet For My Valentine) and I can read clearly that the name of the song is just "Intro". So I want to ask you to end this discussion. Thank you. Cristian MH (talk) 13:49, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

No point telling me - I'm not going to edit the article. I'm just trying to stop you getting blocked for edit warring, because no-one seems to agree with you at the moment, which puts you in the wrong Wikipolicy-wise. If you can't get them to communicate on the talkpage, try going to WP:DRN for more eyes on the question. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:53, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Blocked from editing The Poison?[edit]

I already agreed to stop editing the track names, and even added more reviews to the reception section since the disbute ended. I have talked with the user on his and my talk page, and I haven't edited anything regarding the tracks since I told them I would stop. I wasn't even warned about an edit war, and I only reverted twice meaning I in no way violated the 3RR. I am requesting that you unblock me from editing The Poison as I did not violate any rules. TJD2 (talk) 14:04, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

I haven't blocked you. I have locked the article so no-one can edit it (see WP:PROTECT), because it kept changing every few hours, and that's no good for our readers. Decide amongst yourselves what is going to go in the article - if necessary go to WP:DRN to get some of the dispute resolution people to help you work it out. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 15:05, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

I'm fine with that; I figured after I posted this that it might be just locked, but wasn't sure as I don't ever log off Wikipedia. As I said, I'm done with the track name argument, and have been for a while. I agree with you about the constant updates. Thank you for addressing my concern.TJD2 (talk) 16:02, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

That's cool. You should have no difficulties editing anywhere else, my locking the article does not reflect upon yourself. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 16:17, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Urgent intervention on WP:ANI[edit]

Dear "Elen of the Roads"


I can't take this user's abuse anymore. If well intentioned editors can get harassed like this, I don't want to continue at Wikipedia. RobertRosen (talk) 13:57, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

There have been some further developments. Which are on WP:ANI. I'm seeing if the user and I can call a truce and ignore/avoid each other in future. RobertRosen (talk) 21:48, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
He's a "reformed" socker who continued to indulge in uncivil disruptive editing with other editors (including an admin) even after being unblocked. In the past 5 months the only 2 articles he has worked on are those in which I reverted controversial BLP or poorly sourced/copyrighted material. Can you advise me on how to proceed because I want all this to stop. RobertRosen (talk) 05:57, 11 November 2012 (UTC)


Could you explain more specifically why you struck out your vote?--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 15:42, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

Yeah, no problem. I went back to the basic principles, and came up with a line of reasoning that looks like this:-

The following policies/customs/practice apply here

  • If two or more editors are going at it hammer and tongs in a legit content dispute and will not stop, they can all be ibanned or tbanned to damp it down
  • If two or more editors spend their time following each other around the project sniping, they can be ibanned
  • If one editor follows another editor around persistently, for a long time, sniping, that is disruptive
  • If editors are editing in a disruptive manner in an area, they can be sanctioned with tbans, blocks and bans
  • If editors are trolling, they shoud be blocked
  • If someone is being trolled by socks, the socks should be blocked
  • If someone supports the trolling from the sock, they should be blocked

Let's leave out the two sockmasters for the moment. Focus on the editors who have legitimate accounts.

IIf the users with legitimate accounts were doing nothing wrong, they shouldn't have been ibanned.

If Mathsci is equally bad in how he interacts with the legitimate accounts, a normal (two way) iban would have been the right remedy

If Mathsci was behaving well but the other editors included in the iban were engaged in following Mathsci around sniping, the other editors should have been blocked or tbanned for being disruptive.

If the other editors were trolling, they should have been blocked for trolling.

If they were supporting the trolling socks, they should have been blocked for that.

At the end of the day, a one way interaction ban would appear to be the wrong remedy, but I don't have enough processed data to decide what the right remedy is, so I struck my vote. It seems to me that the issue of trolling socks, and the issue of the behaviour of the legitimate editors, is getting conflated, but the remedies proposed are not dealing with that. What should have happened if Arbcom was not going to support the original AE sanction was an examination of the behaviour of all parties against the checklist above, to determine where all the behaviours fall. Since everything on Wikipedia becomes stale so quickly, I don't know if there is still the opportunity to do this. Elen of the Roads (talk) 17:41, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

My initial statement included evidence of the inciting incident for the AE case that led to this sanction. I had not interacted with Mathsci for weeks when he suddenly accused me of tag-teaming and meatpuppetry without any evidence on an unrelated AE case. There is nothing in my reaction that I think was inappropriate. All I can really say is that I probably should have just ignored the comment about me so as to not allow any room for hostility, one-sided though it may have been, but I can't say for certain that it would have changed anything.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 18:37, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
Things on Wikipedia become stale quickly, but is there any reason to assume that has happened here? In his comments in his user talk and on the request page, SilkTork mentions that if Arbcomm were to examine the questions you asked, what it needs to examine would date back at least to 2009. Having waited a few weeks shouldn't matter when examining an issue spanning three years. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:18, 10 November 2012 (UTC) is a tor node. Mathsci (talk) 21:44, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
While we are on these historical matters, perhaps you could clear up something that has been puzzling us for some time. Mathsci is insistant that banned User:Echigo mole is identical with User:A.K.Nole, the link being a group of Vodafone addresses. He cites you as the source of this information. I believe he is referring to the incident in December 2010 when Mathsci got User:Mikemikev coomunity banned for disruption at AN/I [9] and then decided later that he was wrong? Anyway, perhaps you could comment on some related issues. (1) Should Mathsci be disclosing this sort of information at all? (2) Are you satisfied that you are being correctly quoted? (3) Has ArcComm indeed determined that A.K.Nole is indeed Echigo Mole? (4) Are you and ArbComm satisfied that the other users accused by Mathsci, such as User:Quotient group, User:Junior Wrangler and User:Penny Birch are equally guilty? If so, why has none of them also been banned? If not, then why is Mathsci permitted to make these frequently repeated allegations? I do hope you can clarify matters. Koi No Yokan (talk) 22:40, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
Hello Mr Nole (I presume it is you, and not just one of your party). I'm afraid I was just the messenger back then - it was User:Shell Kinney who as I recall actually handled the Checkuser stuff when I joined. However, I am interested in your side of the story. Do you feel you were hard done by, and why did you decide to respond by starting this sock party, which is surely a drain on your time and energy? What do you hope to achieve by it? Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:35, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
Elen, since you state that you didn't have enough data, why didn't you guys advocate opening a full case after striking your vote? In fact, after Silk Tork did some investigating on his own, you had more data than you had when you first voted. If you needed more, then wouldn't further investigation have been appropriate? Cla68 (talk) 23:50, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
Largely because there was a bit of a convo going on between a couple of us over what was the best thing to do, and various other folks were hopping up and down like this, and on Wikipedia anything over 24 hours old is stale in some people's eyes (they should try working for the Revenue - six years isn't long enough to write off a debt). In the end, it's all been archived...until the next time, which I'm sure won't be long in coming. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:00, 11 November 2012 (UTC)
Well, since I don't feel that being one-way interaction banned just for having an argument in an AE thread is very justified, I guess you can expect an amendment motion soon. And, as obsessive as the editor at the center of all this is, I think you can expect more from that quarter, without my involvement. You guys really should have ended it now, instead of tabling it for later. Cla68 (talk) 05:03, 11 November 2012 (UTC)
If you wish to appeal your ban, then arbitrators have already indicated that WP:AE is the place to do that. Here's the template: Template:Arbitration enforcement appeal. The remarks you are making about the "other editor at the center of all this" are not permissible until you make that appeal and your sanctions are lifted. The editor that started off the whole chain of problems was Zeromus1. I alerted Amalthea as checkuser in private on 9 September. Only in November did it become evident who was operating the account. Mathsci (talk) 05:26, 11 November 2012 (UTC)
sigh * sips whiskey * — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cla68 (talkcontribs)
Ah yes the next time ...[10][11] Mathsci (talk) 04:50, 11 November 2012 (UTC)

Call of Duty template[edit]

One more thing; users at the Call of Duty article keep reverting my work claiming they "don't need sources". They state the game Call of Duty: World at War is a part of the Call of Duty: Black Ops series, when in actuality although it is in the same universe, it is not in the same series. I've looked into this as well, and no sources support this claim. Nor have I ever heard COD1,2 and 3 reffered to as the "Original Trilogy". The way I see it without a source, these claims of WaW being in the Black Ops series are inaccurate. TJD2 (talk) 22:23, 10 November 2012 (UTC)


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Nobody Ent 23:06, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

Another one[edit]

Think there is a new one ..... 65 Edits Per Hour (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log). Mtking (edits) 18:47, 12 November 2012 (UTC)

You got it...:) This guy is getting to be a pain in the posterior. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 18:53, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. Mtking (edits) 19:12, 12 November 2012 (UTC)

Block expungement policy[edit]

I don't yet know when or if I will get to it, but I wanted you to know I added a comment of yours to my To-do list. In short, I'd like to see a procedure enabled to expunge a block from a block list, where the parties agree that the original block was in error. While some cases, such as your example, are clear-cut, the boundaries are tricky, so I'm not ready to propose until I'm ready to spend some time on it.--SPhilbrick(Talk) 21:22, 12 November 2012 (UTC)

That's the tricky thing. Where do you draw the line beyond the situation where the admin immediately says 'oh dear, wrong dude' or equivalent. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:30, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
Would this review any blocks made back in the "old days" (say, 2006) that were questionable? I have one of those, a "I blocked myself" block, and a "Oops, my bad" block, plus associated annotation. --Rschen7754 22:32, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
That would be for the community to decide. My alternate account User:Elen on the Roads was blocked because someone thought it was an impersonator, which amuses me no end, but it does seem unfair generally that a block that all sides agree was totally based on some mistake, cannot be properly deleted. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:03, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
It's technically enabled - I tried blocking my bot and testing it, but of course the consensus isn't here to use it. --Rschen7754 23:04, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
I thought all you can do is revdel it, and that still leaves a record in the block log. I did't think you can oversight it....???? --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:16, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
It's only revdel. I don't have OS, so I can't comment on if it can be done that way. --Rschen7754 23:20, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
It should leave a struck through line, so anyone can see that this editor was blocked, but not the reason. Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:41, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
Oh, okay. I did my test a while ago, so I remember it did something, but didn't remember exactly what. :) --Rschen7754 23:45, 12 November 2012 (UTC)
Actually may be wrong. I forget - I have oversight, so I can always see where an edit has been revision deleted

[12] - it shows that a block happened at a specific time but everything else is blocked out, at least for me. If I look at the revision specifically, I can see everything as an admin. (Don't worry, I'll undo this :) ) --Rschen7754 00:04, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

Don't worry, there isn't a problem with testing (I've got a load of revdels of move logs, testing something for someone last week). Do you think it's worse to see a block with no reason? Or a block with a reason followed by an apologetic unblock. I wonder if you can oversight the block log. Half a mo.....Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:12, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
What do you see now - I've oversighted it. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:14, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
It's completely gone. There's one block and 2 unblocks. --Rschen7754 00:26, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
Yay. So if there was a policy, an admin could ask an oversighter to oversight his snafu. And if there was a different policy, some community decision making process could ask an oversighter to remove a bad block (an error of judgement, not a complete foul up). Could you check your own admin log, to see if it has disappeared from there as well. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:30, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
The block has, but the revdel is still visible (though I suppose it could be OS'ed as well). However, clicking on the associated link results in "The action you have requested is limited to users in one of the groups: Oversighters, afttest-hide." --Rschen7754 00:34, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
Peanut gallery notes You'd wanna disappear the unblock, too. (Us peons can count) NE Ent 00:38, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

─────────────────────────FTR, I don't want it completely disappeared. I would like it if there were some record, somewhere, that includes all the blocks, even the inadvertent ones, to help make sure the system isn't gamed. But make it so that the block log easily viewable would contain only those that were in the oopsie category. I don't even want to remove those where many admins would say they wouldn't block in those circumstances, and the original blocking admin agrees it was a little overzealous. Leave that one there. I want to remove only those like the "Oops I thought it was an impersonator, don't I feel foolish", or "oh yeah, that comment was directed at you, not by you". Some of this is personal. I have a clean block log, plan to keep it that way, and would be royally pissed if someone accidentally blocked me. If I'm skating near the edge, and someone blocks me, even if many wouldn't that's on me. But if someone misreads a diff, or clicks the wrong button, I'd sure like it if that could be removed from the main block log, and I'd be happy that it remains in the longer record. I want to be able to say "I have a clean block log". I don't want to have to say, well, when you look at my block log, here's what you need to know..."--SPhilbrick(Talk) 01:01, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

Of course there should be a method to remove a mistaken block from the main log (although I agree there should be a publicy viewable audit trail somewhere). Another point is that sometimes a misguided admin blocks a user, then unblocks them a few hours later when an ANI discussion shows they were mistaken. The problem is that I have seen a couple of cases where the unblock was dripping with a "you got away with it this time" attitude in the unblock edit summary, when the summary should have said "community consensus is that the block was totally wrong, sorry". Any new scheme needs a way for another admin to annotate the record with the correct summary, however, firm guidelines would be needed to reduce the amount of wasted time in considering "review my block log" requests from the usual suspects. Johnuniq (talk) 02:22, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
To my mind in the second instance, you would want an audit trail of the admin's bad block and subsequent conduct (in case he made a habit of it). Another admin could revdel the unblock summary, but without a technical change they wouldn't be able to amend it. You could do a hack by reblocking and unblocking with a better summary, then having the original block and the reblock oversighted, but I don't think that's at all a good solution.Elen of the Roads (talk) 12:48, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
  • As the first part of the process, I'd like to suggest a change to the Oversight policy to allow suppression of a block/unblock entry in the block log where the following conditions are met:
  1. The block resulted from a factual error(admin has blocked the wrong user) not from an error of judgement on the part of the admin (admin intended to block the user, but block is not supported by policy/consensus).
  2. The admin who made the block is the one requesting suppression
  3. The user has already been unblocked and advised that suppression will be requested
Technically, Arbcom isn't supposed to make policy (before anyone makes that point), but I'm just proposing this as an admin who has made a screw up. I think it would be preferable to separate this out from developing a policy on errors of judgement, as this is much more clear cut and should be less contentious. Thoughts anyone? Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:06, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
So I assume this would include admin blocking self. Face-smile.svg --Rschen7754 20:13, 13 November 2012 (UTC)
No, that would definitely be excluded Face-devil-grin.svg Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:26, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

All block log entries should be expunged automatically by the software 6 months after the unblock, if the person isn't reblocked in that interval. There is entirely too much drama and long term conflict from people getting pissy about block logs. Giano was a mostly-sane editor until he melted down over a block, similarly Mbz1, Malleus, etc. If someone does something bad enough that it needs to be remembered longer than 6 months, then people will remember it, there will be discussion threads to point at, etc. What we have now is a moronic combination of kindergarten and Orwell: "this is going on your permanent record!!!" The book Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age (ISBN 0691150362) looks very interesting. We do not need to memorialize all this stuff, just because we have enough computers to each be our own little FBI Records Division. (talk) 00:23, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

This discussion has been mentioned at Wikipedia talk:Blocking policy#Urgently required. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 09:40, 11 January 2013 (UTC)

ANI response[edit]

I wroting the response your complaint on ANI. --B767-500 (talk) 01:05, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

and another ?[edit]

what about Keep UFC Articles (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) ? Mtking (edits) 19:20, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

.....and another one gone, and another one gone...another one bites the dust! (although Black Kite was the one that got him) --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:32, 13 November 2012 (UTC)


You might take notice of my discussion at User talk:Courcelles. I appreciate your open-minded and thoughtful consideration during what was/is obviously an uncomfortable situation. Of course, the decision is still entirely within the domain of ArbCom, but I felt the information may be of use to you. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 20:20, 13 November 2012 (UTC)

The Signpost: 12 November 2012[edit]

Help with upset editor[edit]

Hi Elen of the Roads. I am involved in an AFD discussion here that has gone strange. User:Qworty has struck my text and accused me of being the blocked paid editor Morning277. I see from the investigation here that you have recently been involved, so I was hoping you could assist. I'm a new editor and have made less than 20 edits to discussions. I've never edited an article. I'm happy to turn over my account for a user investigation. Can you please help? BeyondKneesReach (talk) 04:46, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

I have asked Qworty to file a request for a check in the appropriate place, as that is the correct operating procedure. Making allegations in the middle of a deletion discussion is not the way to go. However, if you are a new editor, I'm a duck, so would you care to advise me as to any previous editing you have done. You can do so privately by email if you prefer. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 12:47, 15 November 2012 (UTC)
I just wanted to note that several editors have commented about several aspects of Qworty's conduct and editing practices and they seem very resistent. Many can be seen be reading through the users talk page and checking out the contribs. It might be time for an intervention. (talk) 14:21, 15 November 2012 (UTC)
Ok. I'm happy to discuss here. I've been a member since Sep. 25 but I made my first real edit on Nov. 9, although I did make one small edit to an article from my IP address before I created an account. That was probably a year ago and I assume it will show in the check user. My primary interest is in policy, so I've done quite a bit of reading in the Wikipedia space but haven't made any contributions in that regard. Out of boredom I have spent several hours watching discussions on the Wikipedia IRC help channel. That's my full Wiki bio BeyondKneesReach (talk) 17:09, 15 November 2012 (UTC)
User_talk:Qworty#John_Bassette_Notability_tag seems to go against WP:NPA. My interest in Qworty started with User_talk:Qworty#Suzon_Fuks where in his zeal to combat COI he assumed that a drama student somewhat incompetently editing an article about a drama specialist (for a coursework assignment) was a WP:SPA showing WP:COI and added an incorrect and confusing banner without any prior enquiry or discussion, in an apparent lack of WP:AGF and in contravention of the guidelines at Wikipedia:COI#Noticeboards_and_templates ("First approach...", "If you are sure..."). PamD 17:53, 15 November 2012 (UTC) amended 18:17, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

I would like to encourage you...[edit]

to run for ArbCom again. It's a thankless task, and I'm certain it's a terrible timesink, but I'd feel better if you were running. Beyond My Ken (talk) 09:29, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

Hear hear WormTT(talk) 09:33, 15 November 2012 (UTC)
  • I'll be honest, I had been very much in two minds about running anyway - I have been very brassed off by certain events. Then, it looks like "civility woo-woo" is going to form a key issue for this election, and while I have no concern about anyone asking my position (see User:Elen of the Roads/On editing in a collaborative project where I've been working up thoughts I initially expressed at my RfA), I have a real concern about how the debate might be conducted. It is (in my opinion, I'm sure all politicians everywhere would disagree) low politics to pick on individuals to highlight the issues of the day, creating victims or bogeymen usually without the consent of the individuals concerned. Certain parties have indicated that they intend to ask why did you not sanction User:this user for this statement or that phrase relating to certain contentious discussions on sanctions from the recent past. This has the potential to turn into a rerun of the original request to sanction, which is simply not fair to any third party being picked on for the next War of Jennifer's Ear when he never wanted to be Joe the Plumber in the first place.
  • I appreciate that this is a bit of a convoluted statement, probably makes no sense to anyone else, and I'm probably worrying about nothing. The community by and large has good sense and would probably see through this kind of behaviour if anyone was to try it. And the other community issue - the role and structure of Arbcom itself - is an excellent topic for discussion, ranging from replace it with a couple of WMF staffers to triple the size and create "lower courts". --Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:20, 15 November 2012 (UTC)
  • It makes sense to one who hangs out in the unsavory gutters of Wikipedia. If you're willing to continue to serve, that'd be great; reading User:AGK/ACE2012, it's certainly understandable if you choose not to. As regards to any "why did (didn't) you..." questions, I'd suggest approximately Because based on the information available to me it was in the best interests of Wikipedia. I explained my reasoning to the best of my ability at the time of closing; further discussion at this point is simply not fair to to the parties involved in the case. Make template, subst as required... Sure, you might lose some of the ArbCom-make-policy-by-fiat crowd, but I'm confident (hopeful?) the grown-up vote will prevail. NE Ent 13:49, 15 November 2012 (UTC)
  • I had not seen that essay before, Elen. I'm glad you linked it. It is good to see we share many common ideas. I had already decided to support if you were to make another run, but those words help solidify my support. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 13:53, 15 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Please run again. You do this difficult job very well. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 04:21, 17 November 2012 (UTC)
  • +1 I agree with all those above. I was going to try and write something profound to encourage you - but then I found out most of what I would have said is already said better, here. Begoontalk 04:38, 17 November 2012 (UTC)
I did not vote for you when you were elected. I would like the opportunity to remedy that.--Wehwalt (talk) 16:17, 17 November 2012 (UTC)
Thank you. I never thought of it, but I suppose if I had, I would probably not have expected you to vote for me, as you had expressed concerns at my RfA. I'm pleased you don't think I've made a complete hash of it - it often feels as an Arb as if one is reduced to picking the least worst option. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:37, 18 November 2012 (UTC) (inserted italics - realised that sentence could be read two ways Elen of the Roads (talk) 10:33, 18 November 2012 (UTC))
  • I don't suppose you know me from Adam, but I came here to say that I voted for you in 2010 and hope to have the opportunity to do so again. I may not agree with you all the time, but I see yours as a consistent voice of reason and I believe you care deeply about the project. Fwiw. Rivertorch (talk) 06:39, 19 November 2012 (UTC)
  • I notice you have yet to add your name to the pile, so I assume you are mulling it over. No one could blame you, it is generally a thankless job. While I sometimes grump at the Committee (a favorite pass-time of many Wikipedians), and freely admit I should grump a bit less, the committee is better because of you. I guess you have to ask if you are better because of it. Whatever you decide, thanks for what you have done. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 16:22, 19 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Voice of reason. I hope you will consider running again. (olive (talk) 17:32, 19 November 2012 (UTC))


    • Good to hear. Hope it didn't take too many pints to talk yourself into another two years of bludgeoning. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 01:43, 20 November 2012 (UTC)


I was looking to see the denouement of the Kraxler ANI at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Incidents, but it is gone, I do not see it in the archives either. Can you find it for me? --Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) (talk) 14:59, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Administrators'_noticeboard/IncidentArchive774#User_Kraxler_using_abusive_language_and_deleting_talk_page_information NE Ent 15:22, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

Thank You[edit]

I wanted to thank you for your comment to Qworty regarding the level of hostility in his/her interactions with me. You are quite right; there have been no real conflicts between me and other editors in the past 2-3 years. This recent attack on over 30 articles I've created and/or edited has been quite a shock, and I've bit my lip and tried not to react in kind. Whole reference sections and properly-constructed bibliographies have been deleted as "unsourced", then the articles have been nominated for deletion as "non-notable". I welcome any attention you can give to the issue (understanding that your comment did not mean you were taking sides or anything).Rosencomet (talk) 19:47, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

Elen, could you perhaps have a look at the recent history of Association for Consciousness Exploration? I've acted boldly. PamD 07:21, 16 November 2012 (UTC)
While the notability of the subject is a little marginal, that merge discussion was closed five years ago at the time Rosencomet's editing was being examined by Arbcom. Popping up now and announcing that the consensus is to merge is just plain disruptive. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:34, 16 November 2012 (UTC)
I would like to thank you for looking into this matter, and for your actions. I would ask you to look at Starwood Festivals Qworty edits as well. I would also like to point out that Qworty's Starwood crusade, as another editor called it, has affected over thirty articles. Three have already been deleted as non-notable; at least ten more have been nominated. In several cases it has included wholesale deletion of entire reference sections and bibliographies as "unsourced", and other IMO questionable practices. There have been many tags for non-notability on prominent authors such as Patricia Monaghan and Raymond Buckland, and musicians/bands like Amampondo and Badi Assad. The COI tags are also problematic; they all seem to be assumptions that an appearance at the Starwood Festival, even twenty or thirty years ago, means I should not be allowed to edit the article, although the arbcom decided no such thing. Also, some of the articles are of people that have NEVER appeared there, like Badi Assad and Prem Das. This has every indication, IMO, of an attack by someone I have locked horns with in the past editing under a new name. You'll find a list on my talk page.Rosencomet (talk) 17:09, 16 November 2012 (UTC)
Yes, I wondered if he had a previous incarnation. Not a problem obviously, as long as the other account is retired and not blocked. Don't get me wrong - I'm no fan of spam - but there isn't a problem if an article started a bit spammy, and got improved over time. And tagging Monaghan and Buckland for non-notability is just nonsense. I've been thinking his edits warrant a closer look. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 20:07, 16 November 2012 (UTC)
Further check shows the account was created in 2007 under this username, so maybe you've had a run-in with him before. I've restored Raymond Buckland and am adding references - Google Books is a great source in this area. Should you have a copy of any of the varied "encyclopaedias of witchcraft" I believe they will be evidence of Buckland's status within the community. I'll see if I can track down some publishers stats as well. A lot of the others you list I know almost nothing about. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:23, 16 November 2012 (UTC)
I greatly appreciate your efforts. As to his/her identity, there are a few possibilities, some of them blocked. I was never convinced, for instance, that we tracked down all of Mattisse's sockpuppets[14]. (She was the one who caused much of my problem in 2006, first demanding citations of non-controversial material, then accusing me of link-farming when I supplied them.)
I guess the ones actually nominated for deletion are the most critical. Of those, Donald Michael Kraig, Phyllis Curott, Baba Raul Canizares, Anodea Judith, Kenny Klein and the South African band Amampondo are probably the most ridiculous to call non-notable. A look at the pre-Qworty versions will demonstrate that easily. Which is not to say that the sourcing doesn't merit more work, just to be fair.Rosencomet (talk) 16:23, 17 November 2012 (UTC)
Someone would have noticed if he was Mattisse, believe me. And he seems to have taken my advice and moved on to bringing some old articles up to snuff. Only Donald Michael Kraig and Kenny Klein are actually up for deletion - I've never heard of either, but it won't hurt to look for sources. I'll finish Buckland over the weekend - I'm surprised it was in such a poor state, there are a lot of sources about Buckland and Gardner particularly. Elen of the Roads (talk) 18:07, 17 November 2012 (UTC)
Sorry; some have had their deletion nominations removed. Here is an updated list of articles Qworty has nominated for deletion that still have the tag. Of course, you might not agree that none of these should be so tagged; frankly, I have already said as much about Brushwood. I don't intend to sway you, just to ask you to review their pre-Qworty versions and see what you think. Thanks again.:

Louis Martinie, David Jay Brown, Luisah Teish, Patricia Monaghan, M. Macha Nightmare, Trance Mission, Matthew Abelson, Kenny Klein, Brushwood Folklore Center, Donald Michael Kraig, LaSara FireFox and Ian Corrigan.

OK. I've taken a look at them all. There's nothing to stop you contributing in the AfDs by the way, particularly if you have any more sources, and from replacing deleted content if you have a reliable source. From the top of the list
  • Patricia Monaghan AfD is heading for keep, meets WP:AUTHOR
  • Raymond Buckland not at AfD and I am working on it
  • Amampondo snow kept at AfD (I think Qworty is unfamiliar with the world music scene, to be fair)
  • Badi Assad I have removed the tags - you removed the suspect coi editing (someone kept replacing the article with the content of her website) and there are reviews in world music publications
  • Prem Das I have removed COI tag but left the notability tag, as I think notability is not well evidenced and another couple of sources supporting notability wouldn't hurt
  • Donald Michael Kraig I have opined on the AfD that I think he meets WP:CREATIVE based on the Raven Grimassi reference in the Encyclopedia of Wicca and Witchcraft
  • Phyllis Curott Removed four tags, article could do with more content but subject has demonstrated notability from the outset
  • Baba Raul Canizares I have removed the COI tag but left the notability tag as there is not much in the article. You can help by finding some sources that demonstrate notability. If you find a source, you can restore some of the deleted content, otherwise someone else may nominate him at AfD (in fact, somebody has)
  • Anodea Judith I have removed the refimprove tag as the small amount of content is cited. Subject is definitely notable. The long list of references seems excessive for the two lines of content, so I presume it sources some removed content. If you want to add back any removed content, include an inline citation.
  • Kenny Klein Is he better known for his music? I can find very little that suggests the wider world has noticed him
  • Louis Martinie AfD is debating either creating an article for the book he co-authored or redirecting to the article on Sallie Ann Glassman
  • David Jay Brown at AfD. Doesn't look as if anyone can find evidence of notability
  • Luisah Teish at Afd, should be kept. You should opine there
  • M. Macha Nightmare At AfD. If I were closing (which I'm definitely not) I would keep
  • Trance Mission At AfD and likely to be deleted. Another editor has decided to improve it, and seems to have made things rather worse
  • Matthew Abelson no comments at AfD. Really doubt this chap is notable in Wikipedia definition
  • Brushwood Folklore Center you've already said yourself that notability is pretty marginal
  • LaSara FireFox At Afd - Steve with his Highbeam account has turned up that she was interviewed by the Chicago-Sun-Times in 2005 and her column in New Witch magazine got a mention in the Washington Post in 2003. I have opined that the CST article should take her over the bar.
  • Ian Corrigan At AfD - doesn't look like this guy is notable in Wikipedia terms
The David Jay Brown article has been deleted. I thought it ended a bit early since the "vote" (I know it isn't really) was tied, and the editor who closed it referred to Brown as part of the "Crackpot Fringe". Hopefully someone without my perceived COI will recreate it one day. Oh well.
In the meantime, there are a few of Qworty's deletion nominations that really should, IMO, be closed: Trance Mission, M. Macha Nightmare, Kenny Klein, LaSara FireFox and Luisah Teish have overwhelmingly "Keep" comments. Could you or someone else please consider closing these? Thank you.Rosencomet (talk) 20:09, 19 November 2012 (UTC)
Just FYI - M. Macha Nightmare, LaSara FireFox and Luisah Teish have already closed. The decision on each was Keep. Trance Mission (which was extended) and Kenny Klein are still open. Rosencomet (talk) 14:58, 21 November 2012 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/BStudent0[edit]

Given the latest MtPrincess (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log), is there a range block that might help out ? Mtking (edits) 20:05, 17 November 2012 (UTC)

one other question any link between this and Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/A Nobody or Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Temporary for Bonaparte Mtking (edits) 20:14, 17 November 2012 (UTC)
CUs who knew A Nobody better than I say they do not believe either Temporary for Bonaparte or BStudent0 is him. I've been blocking IPs sequentially - at this rate I could end up blocking every campus in Ohio. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:29, 17 November 2012 (UTC)


Did you get to this [15]? NE Ent 00:36, 18 November 2012 (UTC)

Haven't had time yet. If someone else wants to pick it up, feel free. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:00, 18 November 2012 (UTC)
No worries. You get to when you get to it. Ents famously prefer not to be hasty. Was mostly checking to make sure nothing was stuck in a spam filter somewhere. NE Ent 01:04, 18 November 2012 (UTC)


I promised to not post again on his talk page and I won't. But these two edits [16][17] are concerning. I don't think he understands the message you posted two weeks ago that he cannot edit while he's blocked. Or maybe he thought he could legitimately edit with his old User:Take Me Higher account.

Contrary to what some people may think, I don't necessarily want Bull-Doser to stay blocked for eternity. It would be great to see Bull-Doser becoming a positive contributor someday. I think he has the potential to bring a lot to Wikipedia if only he would listen to others for a change instead of living in his world. But edits such as these two recent ones coupled with his lack of interaction with others makes me think that he's not ready yet to be back. Farine (talk) 04:02, 18 November 2012 (UTC)

  • I've been following this one since day one, and I tend to agree that there appears to be an incapacity to comprehend. It isn't about willingness, it is about ability. Sutble, but real. I had declined an earlier request for different reasons, but the exchanges all over the talk page speak for themselves. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 04:10, 18 November 2012 (UTC)
  • The Take Me Higher account is blocked so he can't use it. He just seems very clueless, and so far he's not particularly listening to some of the explanations. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 11:03, 18 November 2012 (UTC)

A brownie for you![edit]

Brownie transparent.png Just because. StAnselm (talk) 06:07, 18 November 2012 (UTC)
Thank you so kindly :) And virtual brownies contain no sugar! Its all good. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 11:05, 18 November 2012 (UTC)


I was worried it wasn't going to happen. --Floquenbeam (talk) 01:26, 20 November 2012 (UTC)

There was some concern here also. This will be an "interesting" election, with certain tactical considerations to voting. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 05:15, 20 November 2012 (UTC)
  • I've hit something of a timing snag. I wasn't intending to run, and because of that arranged to go on holiday for four days from tomorrow (hubby and I are going to Edinburgh for a late birthday treat). I then allowed myself to be talked into running (you know who you are, damn you!) at a point where outside activities have eaten up my time (if I say I'm heading up a project that involves building work and a deadline and a health and safety course with a written exam....). So I'm not going to get all the questions - most of the questions even - answered. Just have to see how that goes; lacking the ability to clone myself, there's not much else I can do. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 11:37, 21 November 2012 (UTC)
It doesn't bother me; I don't have any questions. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 12:05, 21 November 2012 (UTC)
Well, as Otter told Flounder in Animal House 'You fucked up .... you trusted us.' [original research?] I suggest posting a note on your candidate page saying you'll be offline on {{ engvar | default=holiday | en-us=vacation }} during the question period. NE Ent 13:00, 21 November 2012 (UTC)
I'll see what I can get done and post that note this evening. Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:17, 21 November 2012 (UTC)
For the record, the tree shaping case is nothing personal; I didn't even realize that it was the case you drafted. --Rschen7754 22:08, 22 November 2012 (UTC)

The Signpost: 19 November 2012[edit]

Enjoy Yourself[edit]

Just wanted to take a moment to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!Rosencomet (talk) 12:42, 21 November 2012 (UTC)

Notification of statement[edit]

This is to notify you that you have been named in a statement issued by the arbitrators not running for re-election, regarding the recent leaks from arbcom-l. If you have comments regarding the statement, please post them to the Arbitration Committee's Noticeboard talk page at Wikipedia talk:Arbitration Committee/Noticeboard#Statement regarding recent leaks from arbcom-l. For the Arbitration Committee, Hersfold (t/a/c) 05:32, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Elen, who did you leak the private emails to? Cla68 (talk) 07:05, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Also, are you the butler in the Vatileaks scandal? :) Jeff Kilmar 08:27, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Lol. But seriously, I haven't been forwarding emails anonymously to anyone. The actual words (now I believe on JClemens userpage) were not what made me mad, it was the intent to carry out what appeared to me to be an attack on another editor as part of his election campaign. I discussed his stated approach in depth with someone in a private chat, then I put the note you will see above on my talkpage a week ago. The worrying thing is that someone else is allegedly sending emails to people (or Coren at least). --Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:18, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Please resign[edit]

Elen, please resign from the Arbcom and your adminship, effectively immediately. (talk) 07:49, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Please use your main account, my brave fellow. Bishonen | talk 17:48, 26 November 2012 (UTC).
Hej IP! Your statement is in violation of my copyright, which was asserted 2 years ago! Wikipedia takes copyright violations very seriously, you should know! Kiefer.Wolfowitz 13:04, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Hi Elen!

Please just take it easy for a day. I trust that you had good reasons. My guess is that you wanted to warn the possible victims of leaks, having learned from previous leaking scandals the damages that can occur.

Sincerely, Kiefer.Wolfowitz 13:08, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

If you resign over what is essentially fallout from the worst behaviour by an arbitrator I have ever seen, attempting to deflect attention from his own indefensible statements and actions, then I'll retire. Difference is - lots of people would miss you, and your enormous contribution. Begoontalk 13:26, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Please do not resign, and let the community decide on your continued service. Some of the candidates scare me.--Wehwalt (talk) 13:37, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

  • All this talk of resigning is premature and serves no purpose. Elen has earned enough trust over the years that it would be best to reserve judgement until the facts are out. Like most dramah at Wikipedia, the reality of the situation is likely quite different than the rhetoric that is flying around. Everyone would do themselves a favor by stepping back and just taking a deep breath for a day or two. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 13:38, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Per Wehwalt. You know you're doing something right when certain people oppose you. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 13:41, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

I'm at work at the moment. Give me till this evening to post a statement - the Arb statement (which I only saw an hour or so ago) isn't the full tale. Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:46, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

  • I'm afraid I must disagree with Dennis in respect of the "trust" Elen has gained. She went on record flatly denying that arbcom held a secret page on me - brusquely dismissing my claims out of hand. A few days later a fellow arbitrator emailed me to confirm the page did indeed exist. Oops. Naturally I won't be voting for Elen at the fortcoming election. However - neither am I calling for her resignation over this issue (and certainly not her admin tools, which would seem unrelated). So as someone who honestly thinks ARBCOM would be far better off without Elen of The Roads, but as someone who thinks Elen should certainly be an admin I have to disagree with the IP's knee-jerk request. Pedro :  Chat  20:29, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
    • Struck latter half. More stuff falls out and SandyGeorgia has made some fine points. I note the motion below. Good. If Elen thinks she should remain an admin is up to her, I guess. If she thinks she should remain a contributor to Wikipedia is also up to her as well. Pedro :  Chat  21:08, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Pedro, there never was a seekrit Arbcom page. The Arbitrator who contacted you was the only one who had any idea what you were talking about, which wasn't a seekrit Arbcom page at all. Still, why spoil a good story. Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:24, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
As I have an email with a subject line of "The Secret Page - it exists" it rather looks like you're wrong. I'll not go further. Evidently disclosing private e-mails is your expertise not mine. Pedro :  Chat 
Not saying the page didn't exist. Just that it was something only one person remembered the existence of, not a page where Arbcom were actively plotting to throw you off the project, which was what you thought at the time. Which was a bit confusing, since no-one was fortunately. But you know that - you've got that email which explains it. Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:54, 26 November 2012 (UTC) That sounds snarky, and Pedro really was genuinely worried at the time that he was the subject of some Arbcom campaign to get rid of him, because of this page filed away somewhere that should have been deleted ages before it eventually was.
  • With respect to Pedro (as I'm sure he knows, real respect, not fake respect), I think we'd be better off with you (Elen) remaining on ArbCom for 2013-15. Per Wehwalt above, there are candidates that I find worrying. You might not be better off, but I'm a selfish bastard so I don't care. WRT to everything else, I agree with a comment you've made in your statement below: the one thing that concerns me is your lack of transparency when ArbCom asked what happened. That was a mistake, but assuming you're human, you get to make those occasionally, and it doesn't rise to the level of negating the good work you do, and the benefit of having you on AC. It's a hallmark of dysfunctional organizations that they react to small mistakes with firings, so I'm not sure what the future holds, but if you choose to continue to run, I'm still supporting your candidacy. --Floquenbeam (talk) 22:06, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
To be honest Floq, the mistake was dragging some poor third party into it at all. I should have just posted on my talkpage to start with and not involved anyone else. But I needed someone to talk to, and then I was trying to avoid shit getting thrown at him. Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:06, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Well, I was trying to imagine what I would have done in your position. It seems pretty... "lonely", I guess I'll say... maybe "insular" is a better word... not to be able to bounce ideas about non-private information off of someone unless they're already on the AC. If this was someone's private information, of course, you can't go sharing that, and having to deal with that kind of thing alone is, I guess, why you Arbs make the big money. But discussing, with a non-arb, the content of the JClemens email I see posted on his talk page doesn't seem wrong; I might have done the same thing if it troubled me. Much of the reaction I've seen so far seems draconian.
I guess I can think of several things that might improve the situation in the future. But since they don't involve putting JClemens' head or your head on pikes, or overthrowing ArbCom, or assigning blame, I don't imagine people are interested in hearing them right now. --Floquenbeam (talk) 23:23, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Depends - I might be interested if it involves getting hammered.--v/r - TP 23:44, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
No heads on spikes? Then I'm not interested either. Malleus Fatuorum 01:50, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
Might have been better to discuss it with another arbitrator, or a former arb who is still on the mailing list (unless they got rid of that). Is it established that your confidant/e spilled the email? Anyway I see an error of judgment on Elen's part, but not a fatal one based on what's known so far. Even the CIA director can't keep email private, so the rest of us have no hope. I'm comfortable with Elen staying on arbcom, just be more careful next time. (talk) 01:10, 28 November 2012 (UTC)
They got rid of the having old arbs stay subscribed forever thing. It would have been better to discuss it with another Arb. That was poor judgement. Elen of the Roads (talk) 02:49, 29 November 2012 (UTC)


[18]. Courcelles 20:59, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

View from this bridge[edit]

Can I first of all confirm that I have at no time ever disclosed any of the sensitive personal information that has been sent to the arbcom mailing list. The mailing list software distributes email sent to the list (it's not webmail). When I cease to be an arbitrator, I will dump that part of my email archive. There is no requirement for ex-arbs to do this, but any UK organisation that permitted ex-employees to retain sensitive personal data after they left would suffer legal consequences, so I believe it is the correct thing to do.

Second, can I confirm that I am not the person sending anonymous emails. If I particularly wanted Coren to see that piece of text, I would just have sent it to him. I don't know who is behind that.

What JClemens had said about what he would do when he ran for Arbcom was said as part of a rambling conversation between a number of committee members, which got round to Hobbes Leviathan at one point. It moved on to civility, and views from the recent case were rehashed. Following this, JClemens sent the email on his talkpage, indicating that he was going to ask candidates whether a particular statement by Malleus Fatuorum should have resulted in a ban and, if not, why not. As has been alluded to elsewhere, several Arbs indicated that it was not appropriate to send it to the list, it belonged off list.

What I did do is discuss it with a third party, in a private chat. I was worried that Malleus would react to the question with one of his anglo saxon epithets, and another request for a ban would ensue. People were asking me if I would stand again, I did not want to get involved in this, but I did not know what to do for the best. Yes, I was angry and used some unparliamentary language. And yes, I did reproduce the words as part of the discussion. To say 'at the upcoming election I am going to stand on this platform and ask this question'- it simply did not seem to me to be something that had been said under the seal of the confessional (an absolute guarantee of non-disclosure).

Eventually I concluded that I was over-reacting, and the community would reach it's own verdict, so I just put the note you can see higher up this talkpage.

The next thing I knew, people were apparently getting anonymous emails with the text on JClemens talkpage. Where I do consider I made a substantial error of judgement is not at that point reporting back to Arbcom immediately everything I had said. This was because the person I had confided in assured me they were not sending random emails (and I have no reason to think they were) and I did not want them to be subjected to the hassle they were eventually subjected to.

So that's what happened.

I understand the view of those who say that everything ever said on that list must be under the seal of the confessional. My view is that ultimately a closed list creates an 'us and them' mindset because you can't discuss things with anyone else, and there's no requirement for propriety. I've seen it on a lot of forums, and would prefer to see much better confidentiality for personal data, and less exclusivity in discussion. That said, this was not an attempt to dismantle the list.

I also understand the view of those who don't think it was the sin that cannot be forgiven, but still think it was a huge error of judgement and I'm a complete incompetent.

I also understand the view of those who don't think there is a huge problem, but wouldn't trust me

I refute wild speculation about how I'm going to go mad and publish loads of personal data.

I'll accept whatever happens next. Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:16, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Could you kindly clarify what you mean by "What I did do is discuss it with a third party, in a private chat.", did this involve the release of email or snippets of emails, including the email Jclemens sent and that was later received by Coren and NW? Snowolf How can I help? 21:23, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Also got a quick question: You shared the content of JClemens' mail in private with someone, and then right after that someone else sent the content of that mail around anonymously to various user, but that someone else was neither you nor the person you shared the content of the mail with? --Conti| 21:29, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Hi Snowolf, Conti. Going to answer you both. Sorry, I thought I made it clear it included I think probably all of what's on JC's talkpage, plus the wording of the question he said he was going to ask. Incidentally, under the 'seal of the confessional' rules, just discussing it is as bad an offence as repeating what was actually said. I now know that the person who emailed NW was the person I discussed it with - I didn't discover this until recently. He used his own name and must have anticipated that NW would just refer it back to the committee, which makes me even more convinced he's not behind the anonymous email to Coren. Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:43, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
I think that's an honest comment, Elen, although it is vague as Snowolf has pointed out. I'm one of the folks who thinks you made a bad judgement call and you should step down from Arbcom. That said, Elen, I've always had immense respect for you and I still hold you in a high regard. I'm disappointed is all. Good luck.--v/r - TP 21:35, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. I appreciate that. See note above re vagueness Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:43, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
I take the completely opposite view, and wish that there were more disclosures about the unsavoury goings on in these secret email lists. Bollocks to the "rules", we need a damn sight more honesty and integrity. But it may be of course that Elen and I have a shared Anglo-Saxon legacy, just that she tones hers down a notch or two. (In the interests of full disclosure it's more likely that my ancestors were Normans, but hey, that was a long time ago now, let's forgive and forget.) Malleus Fatuorum 21:46, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Pretty certain my English ancestors were of saxon stock, but we'll let bygones be bygones. It is the problem with any closed list, forum (Delphi moderator forums were often terrible for it) or chat room. If noodling, laundry lists and personal attacks are all under the same seal of the confessional, nothing gets challenged, and it can create a hothouse atmosphere. Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:04, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
To be clear, I don't think the leak was a bad judgement call. Whistle-blowers are necessary to the health of any society. I think not taking ownership early was a bad judgement call. The rest of my comment still applies.--v/r - TP 22:06, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Anyone who sees something bad happening has a duty to speak out, so I'm wondering why the other sitting arbitrators just sat on their hands rather than exposing Jclemens' bully-boy tactics. Malleus Fatuorum 22:14, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
We agree.--v/r - TP 22:23, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
It seems that we do, except for the small matter of Elen stepping down from ArbCom. I hope that she's re-elected with a resounding majority for taking an ethical stand against Jclemens, someone who should never have been elected to ArbCom in the first place. Malleus Fatuorum 22:31, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
With respect to Elen, I am not sure how these particular actions can be viewed as ethical. She secretly intimated confidential matters to a group of special friends and then lied to the Committee for weeks. While I am sure her actions in other cases are quite ethical, this situation was handled in one of the worst ways possible. Jeff Kilmar 00:21, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
What is confidential about an election statement? Just curious. What makes the statemet "at the elections I am going to publically do this" confidential? Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:26, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
First, I should say that you are handling a difficult situation with poise, and I thank you for responding kindly despite the fact that I was criticizing an action of yours. Now since you ask, I understand the view that all material should be public except that which directly involves personally-identifiable data or the like. However, that is not the policy at this time. You surely are more aware than anyone that arbitrators have an expectation of privacy for all list communication. If you wanted to change that, it doesn't seem quite right to just go ahead - that creates a sense of betrayal. Rather, you might have posted a motion to end secret mailing lists. The fact that you disclosed an email that the writer expected to be confidential seems unethical. It has been the case for years that the permission of the sender has been needed to post emails. Maybe that should change - but just suddenly going ahead with disclosure seems a bit off. But others may not agree. Jeff Kilmar 00:34, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
In short: If you had told the other arbitrators when you were elected that you intended to disclose their emails, that would have been one thing. But you evidently let them think their communications were private, and then went ahead and disclosed them. That seems a bit underhanded somehow. Jeff Kilmar 00:37, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
Point taken, and a very valid one if I may say. I don't believe JC was aware of my views, although the committee remaining from the previous year would have been aware of previously expressed opinions, as it had come up in discussion before. Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:29, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
I'm disappointed that you were less than forthright with your fellow committee members in promptly revealing exactly to what information had been released; I fear this may make things more difficult for your future work on the Committee. At the end of the day, what is most important to me is the quality of decisions from the Committee, not occasional lapses of judgement from its individual members. It's fairly obvious to me that we are better off with you on the committee than off of it, so I will be voting for you shortly. NE Ent 00:30, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
Yes, foolish attempt to deflect the committee's attention from the person I had discussed it with (so they wouldn't blame him for the anonymous malarkey), not realising that he had in consternation bundled everything up and in effect sent it back to the committee. The mistake was dragging a third party into it at all. Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:34, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
I have a rather short attention span, and consequently find discussions such as this one difficult to follow without falling asleep. Who is this mysterious third party? Malleus Fatuorum 03:39, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

Confiding in one trusted person, on an issue that is apparently going public anyway, that involves no private data, is something I can't condemn you for. Trying to get my head around this.

If your confidante didn't share the full text of Jclemens's now-public post with anyone, and neither your confidante nor you sent the anonymous Gmails, then someone else with access to the arbcom list did. That was either another arb who coincidentally decided to widely publicise Jclemens's intentions - which is possible but improbable - or more likely another arb who learned that you had disclosed the email to a confidante and decided to make a scandal out of it.

Are you aware of this being discussed anywhere other than here and

Anthonyhcole (talk) 04:21, 27 November 2012 (UTC) Strike my unhelpful speculation. 06:46, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Isn't this quite consistent with last year's leaking scandal? Who's been on the committee long enough to be implicated in both leaks? Malleus Fatuorum 04:25, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
No. The only common thread so far is that both involve disclosure of arbcom l posts. This case is targetted at EotR with a very specific and immediate petty political purpose, the former was some kind of grand statement about/assault on arbcom itself. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 04:32, 27 November 2012 (UTC) Strike my unhelpful speculation. 06:46, 28 November 2012 (UTC)
The last leaks were targeted at me, no "grand statement" that I could see. And this current leak also centres on me. Coincidence? Malleus Fatuorum 04:54, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
Quite likely. I think the target of the anonymous Gmails was Elen not you. --Anthonyhcole (talk) 05:42, 27 November 2012 (UTC) Strike my unhelpful speculation. 06:46, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

I would like to ask Elen a question. Roger Davies has indicated that there is a sliding greyscale in email communications with arbcom and between arbitrators. That evidently does not apply to sensitive personal data. There is no doubt in my mind that Elen can be completely trusted with that kind of sensitive and confidential data. The matters under discussion here, however, did not involve personal data, but an inappropriate use of arbcom-l as part of an election campaign. I have assumed that prior to the email addressed to Risker published on his talk page, Jclemens had sent a previous shorter email, also concerning ACE2012 and Malleus Fatuorum, to arbcom-l. If so, without mentioning names, had any arbitrators already objected to that previous email as being off-topic or inappropriate for the list before Jclemens sent the second email? Mathsci (talk) 04:42, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

  • I think Elen had a tough choice here - whether to stick to the letter of the rules and abide by the non-publication of a communication that she thought unethical, or to follow a moral course of action in exposing what looks to me like a malicious and bullying misuse of secret ArbCom communications channels and so putting herself at risk. In the event, it looks to me like she went for morality, and tried sounding out a third party - and that led to the whole thing coming out. While I could not recommend the routine publication of private ArbCom communications (because some really do need to be kept confidential), I support Elen's outing of this latest example of Jclemens' arrogant bully-boy tactics - and Mathsci makes a good point that this was not the kind of confidential information that ArbCom often holds about third parties and which really must be kept secret. I sincerely hope Elen's action does not significantly damage her support in the election, and I can only reiterate my own support. I have already cast my Support vote for Elen and my Oppose vote against Jclemens - and I do confess that in each case I clicked the button harder than I would otherwise have done. -- Boing! said Zebedee (talk) 16:15, 27 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Yes, I agree with Boing! And, yes, the votes are in. I trust you, I always have, and I see no reason to change. In fact, the morality of this tale adds to my sense of trust. But there is someone within ArbCom who is really, really playing politics here. I know who I think it is but in any event the field narrows with each election. Keep well, and keep doing what you do. - Sitush (talk) 00:33, 28 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Elen, I know we have had our troubles and I was both surprised and sorry to see this chain of events. I think we both know I know all too well how things can spiral downhill from one bad decision. I just wanted to let you know that I think that you are handling it very well and I hope that this doesn't affect your participation in the project. As others I agree that Arbcom had to do something (and I posted a brief comment about that at the Arbcom page) based on the seriousness of the events and I think they acted pretty fairly, even though it may not seem like it. I doubt it will affect your election so in a month you'll have access to all the tools again and things will be back to normal. Kumioko (talk) 03:53, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

A cup of coffee for you![edit]

A small cup of coffee.JPG Thought you could use one of these!! ♦ Dr. ☠ Blofeld 19:00, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

Thanks. Certainly could. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:43, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

A kitten for you![edit]

Young cats.jpg

Just noticed all the crap your getting, maybe a cute kitten will cheer you up, if not you can always eat it. You got my vote BTW, I have always been of the opinion you are one of the better admins around here. Cheers.

Darkness Shines (talk) 19:12, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

Yum, kitten. Thanks. Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:44, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Disclosure about leak[edit]

Would you be willing or able to post the responses you gave to the Arbs on November 13th and November 25th respectively regarding the leak? I presume these are the dates where you acknowledged revealing details from the mailing list and I think it would be helpful to know what you specifically told the other Arbs regarding your communications with non-Arbs.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 00:48, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

I would be interested in seeing that as well. In the meantime, I have posted my thoughts on the matter at my voter guide. --Elonka 18:20, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

The Signpost: 26 November 2012[edit]

A personal view[edit]

Elen: I wrote you a note above suggesting that you run again for arbitrator, and I have no regret now for having done so. When this recent brouhaha arose, I considered whether it would be best to vote for you or not in the current election, not because I have any doubt whatsoever about your discretion – which I do not – but simply because I wondered if your re-election might create a new ArbCom that was unable to be effective, given the actions taken by other arbs. In the end, I decided that it was best for the community that you be on the Committee, and that Jclemens not be, and I voted that way. We will see if other Wikipedians see things the way I have or not, but regardless of the outcome of the election, please know that at least one Wikipedian appreciates that you placed the good of the community above all else, and were willing to put yourself on the line. Best of luck to you, in the election and in all else. 10:31, 28 November 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Beyond My Ken (talkcontribs)

I wholeheartedly endorse that sentiment. -- Boing! said Zebedee (talk) 11:05, 28 November 2012 (UTC)
Thanks to you both, whatever happens. At the end of the day, it's only dispute resolution (and the pay is lousy) :) --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:45, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Sorry for hiatus[edit]

Apologies for absence - had the most humongous migraine and been unable to look at a computer screen for two days.

To answer a few points:-

@Anthonycole - the party I talked to bundled up what I said and passed it to Nuclear Warfare, who promptly forwarded it to Sir Fozzie, who had it by the 13th and was asking about it. According to those who have seen it, what was sent to Coren was slightly different, and I have no idea who sent it. I would not like to speculate that it was another arbitrator, but the request to Coren to verify it by returning it to Arbcom suggests that it was not intended as a tip of but for other reasons.

@Mathsci - Risker and a couple of others had already attempted to shut the discussion down at an earlier stage, as it was in their opinion running completely off the rails. However, another member of the committee argued that there was no precedent for shutting down a discussion as Arbitrators could basically post however they felt led. One problem with this setup, where everything is as sacred as everything else, is that Arbitrators are free to post personal attacks or outrageous statements and there really is not a lot one can do about it.

@TDA and Elonka - it would make about a dozen emails but I will totally put my hands up and say that on the 13th I named the person I had spoken to. I had asked the person I had spoken to, and they said they had not sent any text to anyone, so I tried to protect them by saying (several times) that they did not have any verbatim text, but they did have all the details. This was plumb stupid, and I fully accept all condemnation for being plumb stupid.

I didn't send anything to Arbcom on the 25th. I sent the following message to SilkTork, saying I was going to put it on my talkpage when I got back home (I had no access to a pc at that point), and he forwarded it to Arbcom. I gather Arbcom got the details of what I had discussed with a third party by subjecting him to the "third degree" at some point prior to this.

As I referred to publically above, a couple of weeks ago another member of the committee posted what appeared to me to be an election manifesto to the main arbcom mailing list. As you can see above I disagreed with what he said In fact, I was bloody angry. I viewed it as low politics and was particularly concerned that it would have a very bad impact on a third party who hadn't signed up to be part of it. As such, mentioned it to a couple of people and discussed it in more detail with a friend (ranted at him about it would be nearer to mark, to be honest. I wouldn't score any civility points).

The situation is being compounded because someone else (I have honestly no idea who) is apparently sending the text of what I referred to as the election manifesto to some of the candidates using throwaway email accounts. No idea what the point of that is, it seems very childish to me. If I'd intended to advertise it, I'd have posted it on my talkpage. All it said (in several paragraphs - it was a political speech) is that he was disappointed that the current committee did not back his stance on civility, he wants to see a future Arbcom that backs his concept of civility, he intends to make that his platform, and he feels very strongly that the community supports him on this.

Wikipedia:Arbitration/Policy says that Arbitrators should preserve in appropriate confidence the contents of private correspondence sent to the Committee and the Committee's internal discussions and deliberations and the Committee treats as private all communications sent to it, or sent by a Committee member in the performance of their duties. However, Wikipedia:ARBCOM#Communications_and_privacy states that Arbitrators usually seek to treat your communications, including emails, as private when possible. We however cannot guarantee against public disclosure for a number of reasons, including potential security limitations. Accordingly, you should not disclose sensitive personal information in your communications with us. Once received, your communications may be shared with committee members and, in some limited cases, with third parties to assist in resolving issues or other purposes. Your communications may be kept for an undetermined period of time for archival or other reasons. So if you are an individual, you don't actually have a guarantee of privacy.

It is the view of some members of the Committee that everything an Arbitrator ever sends to that email address - bad jokes, gossip, laundry lists - is under the seal of the confessional and can never be repeated or referred to elsewhere. I do accept that some people will feel quite strongly that what is said in confidence should remain in confidence. Some will feel that what I did (talking it over with someone) was entirely beyond the pale and means I can never be trusted again. Personally, I think that far stricter confidentiality than that email list is required where personal data is being handled, but by and large the deliberations of the committee should be in public unless there is a privacy issue. Where this leaves election manifestos, bad jokes, gossip and laundry lists is anyone's guess.

As to why I haven't resigned. Well, some of what I said above is actually important. Arbcom have already acknowledged that their mailing list system is not suitable for sensitive personal information, but continue to use it for that purpose. It sends your personal information to third party email inboxes, over which it has no control. Data can be kept forever by persons who no longer have any affiliation with the organization. There isn't even a requirement to delete your email archive when your term of office ends. There's a reason English local councillors all have official email accounts - so the Council can make sure the archive gets deleted when the councillor's term of office ends.

And did you know that if Arbcom sends you an email, you can't share it with anyone. That's part of what "Sent by a committee member in the performance of their duties" means, and there have been fireworks repeatedly when someone has posted an email that an Arbitrator sent to them.

And a closed list where members can say what they like without fear of consequence because nobody can say anything elsewhere is ultimately corrosive. There is no reason to extend protection to every petty comment, every off the wall statement, every personal attack. Because that's what is being protected. Not sensitive personal data. Not state secrets. For goodness sake, this isn't NATO, it's dispute resolution. Why do we have this institution in the first place, this sooper seekrit list that people are terrified of. Let's get the personal information somewhere other than fired into random mailboxes, and get the discussion out in the open. Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:42, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

"get the discussion out in the open" should have been done a long time ago. There's no need for any secrecy in the proceedings of the Committee in the most situations. But what's bothering me, Elen, is that you came up with this "fresh" idea only now, when you yourself are getting scrutinized for leaking some emails. (talk) 02:32, 29 November 2012 (UTC)
It has come up several times before - the committee at one point during the past two years even agreed to set up an open access mailing list, but never did because it was technically impossible with the kit available. At the very start of my tenure I had a blazing row with Risker over this business of emails sent by the committee to a third party being confidential (ie the third party was forbidden from publishing them). Came up in the Rodhullandemu case - the email in question ended up on wiki anyway. PDs always used to be drafted on the arbwiki without any preliminary workshopping - after Monty Hall, I said I'd never do that again. Elen of the Roads (talk) 02:46, 29 November 2012 (UTC)
Thank you for this bit of disclosure.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 16:25, 29 November 2012 (UTC)


Chestnut pony with flaxen.jpg Pony!
Hugs! For your patience and professionalism with the current situation, exhibiting grace under fire, you have received a pony! Ponies are cute, intelligent, friendly (most of the time, though with notable exceptions), promote good will, encourage patience, and enjoy carrots. Treat your pony with respect and he will be your faithful friend! Montanabw(talk) 01:14, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Awww. I always wanted a pony. No danger of speeding on a pony:) --Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:08, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

I dunno, those roadsters can go pretty fast! Montanabw(talk) 01:16, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Dispute resolution volunteer survey[edit]

Peace dove.svg

Dispute Resolution – Volunteer Survey Invite

Hello Elen of the Roads. To follow up on the first survey in April, I am conducting a second survey to learn more about dispute resolution volunteers - their motivations for resolving disputes, the experiences they've had, and their ideas for the future. I would appreciate your thoughts. I hope that with the results of this survey, we will learn how to increase the amount of active, engaged volunteers, and further improve dispute resolution processes. The survey takes around five to ten 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 either listed yourself as a volunteer at a dispute resolution forum, or are a member of a dispute resolution committee. For more information, please see the page that describes my fellowship work which can be found here. Szhang (WMF) (talk) 02:46, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Survivor award[edit]

Badische Guillotine.JPG The Survivor Award
Escaping extrajudicial execution
motion declined NE Ent 16:48, 29 November 2012 (UTC)}

I have to admit that at first glance that thing looked like some particularly old-fashioned kind of toilet. At least it isn't the Halifax Gibbet. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:17, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Arbitration motion[edit]

The arbitration motion regarding you has been archived as not passing. For the Arbitration Committee --Alexandr Dmitri (talk) 17:03, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Moral support[edit]

Hi Elen.

It looks to me like somebody used a private list inappropriately (which bothered you), you discussed it with a friend (which is what friends are for), your friend spread it around without your intent or consent (aargh!), and your hobby suddenly became a lot less fun (at least for the present).

If that's what happened, you absolutely have my sympathy and moral support. I also commend your cool-headedness thus far in response to it! --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 21:52, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

That's about it, although in fairness to the other guy I don't think he intended anything like the drama it caused. A lesson all round, mostly for me. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:23, 29 November 2012 (UTC)
Sadly it's far too easy on WP to cause drama with no intention of doing so ;-)... the hiccups happen when you don't keep that in mind. --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 22:37, 29 November 2012 (UTC)
Typical ArbCom drama. I don't think ArbCom should have anything private. You have my support as well. ~~Ebe123~~ → report 02:08, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

If Re-elected...[edit]

Hi Elen, I'm still trying to decide whether to support you in the ArbCom election, and wonder if I might ask a couple of questions...

  1. If you are re-elected, what action(s) do you plan to take on the issue of inappropriate use of the mailing list by arbitrators?
  2. What changes will you advocate for arbitration policy relating to mailing list misuse, confidentiality, and disclosure?
  3. In the (admittedly unlikely) event that both you and JClemens are re-elected, how will you go about working together?
  4. Suppose another situation occurred in which an arbitrator posted inappropriately to the list on a topic where the community arguably has a right to know. I refer to a post where disclosure would not violate the privacy of any editor and where the comments made are inconsistent with an arbitrator carrying out her or his duties. How would you handle this situation?
  5. Relating to your recent actions, I am much more disturbed by your misleading your colleagues when asked about the leak than I am about seeking the counsel of a friend. Voting for an arbitrator involves trusting in his or her judgment and whilst I accept that you would not have disclosed personal confidential information, I am concerned that you were unwilling to be fully open about your actions. Please explain to me why I should vote in support of you continuing to serve on ArbCom.

Thanks for taking the time to respond. EdChem (talk) 02:35, 30 November 2012 (UTC) I am the editor who posted the questions above; I have removed the IP address from which they were posted. EdChem (talk) 07:26, 30 November 2012 (UTC)

What's much more concerning to me is that you choose to post from an IP address rather than from your registered account. It's difficult to find the right word to describe that sort of behaviour, but cowardice comes close. Malleus Fatuorum 03:39, 30 November 2012 (UTC)
Well, if you can't find the right word, MF, then I hesitate to try, but maybe gutlessness has the right kind of ring to it? Begoontalk 03:51, 30 November 2012 (UTC) I apologise for my bad faith assumption. I offer no excuse for it. Begoontalk 07:35, 30 November 2012 (UTC)
I have many words to describe this sort of stupidity, but most of those who object to the honesty and integrity that Elen has displayed wouldn't understand them. If I'd confided in someone I'd believed to be a friend who subsequently decided to stitch me up I'd be more than a little bit peeved. Not that I have any friends of course, so my reply is entirely hypothetical. Malleus Fatuorum 04:34, 30 November 2012 (UTC)
It would be better if the contributor had signed in, I agree. Perhaps he or she forgot? It has happened to me. In any event, as someone who wholeheartedly supports Elen's bid for reelection, I think the questions are fair ones. Rivertorch (talk) 05:35, 30 November 2012 (UTC)
Thanks, Rivertorch. I appreciate your comments. For the record, I have not logged in to Wikipedia for quite a while, I left at a time I was grieving when I couldn't cope with everything that was upsetting me - which included some of the actions of ArbCom. I have watched Wikipedia from time to time since then, made a few IP edits, and wondered if I would come back and / or whether I'd vote in the ArbCom election. Malleus, I have been angered at your mistreatment by ArbCom and their collective failure to respond appropriately to Jclemens' "not a Wikipedian" behaviour was one of the low points in ArbCom history. Elen's response to Jclemens has actually made my voting (including for her) substantially more likely, and I wanted to ask some questions to help make my decision, so I posted them; I did not stop to consider whether to log in. You are all correct that I should have logged in, which I have now done to claim my questions. It was disrespectful to ask any candidate a question without logging in, and I apologise to Elen for that - Elen, I hope you will accept that my action in posting questions from an IP address was thoughtless rather than deliberately deceptive. Malleus and Begoon, I am not a coward nor am I gutless, I have no problem admitting the questions are mine, I hope you will accept that I was at worst foolish. I agree with Malleus that I would be "more than a little bit peeved" with my friend if I were Elen - which I suppose raises questions about her judgment - but I feel it is not appropriate for me to ask about that; Elen's mistake in this regard was a human one, as she has recognised, and the idea of an ArbCom whose members believe themselves incapable of human error is frightening. ArbCom is already far too reluctant to admit to error, and that is one of its flaws. If this whole incident leads to a greater openness and to a willingness to admit to error then something valuable will have been gained. EdChem (talk) 07:26, 30 November 2012 (UTC)
Hello EdChem. I fear you caught a whiplash here because both Malleus and myself (and several other editors) have been plagued by trolling in times of trouble from what I can really only describe as anonymous cowards. I hope that time has helped to heal your real life grief, and you can return to this project and find pleasure in editing. I have answered your questions below, to the best of my ability.

If you are re-elected, what action(s) do you plan to take on the issue of inappropriate use of the mailing list by arbitrators?

Shut the damn mailing list down as soon as ever it's possible. It is totally unsuitable as a medium for holding sensitive personal information, as was made clear two years ago when sensitive personal information ended up on Wikipedia Review. There are comments on some technical work done in this area over at Wikipedia talk:Arbitration Committee Having got the truly confidential into a safer place, the list can carry the other traffic (voting calls, availability etc) without having the burden that the need to preserve everything as confidential carries.

What changes will you advocate for arbitration policy relating to mailing list misuse, confidentiality, and disclosure?

  • Firstly, require all outgoing Arbitrators to clear their email archives of any list traffic once unsubscribed from the lists (there are 3) because they no longer have a reason to possess it. One could request that ex-Arbs from past times do likewise if they have not already done so. No means of enforcing it of course, because all the emails go to private inboxes, but one can at least ask.
  • Secondly, as said above, separate out the sensitive information. This may need some agreed definitions - existing legal definitions such as the UK data protection act start from the position that the information allows you to identify the person, the same criterion as used in the WMF Privacy statement. However, I would rather think that the community would want a definition starting with information that would identify the editor on Wikipedia, given the amount of traffic from editors who do not wish to be identified with the information they want to provide us with.
  • Thirdly, make clear what you can expect to happen to your information. The current policy (WP:ARBPOL) says that everything is confidential and treated as 'appropriate'. However, at Wikipedia:Arbitration_Committee#Communications_and_privacy it tells editors that the committee might share your information with whoever it sees fit with or without informing you, and not to send it confidential information anyway, as confidentiality cannot be guaranteed. Not helpful
  • Rather, any policy should make clear that for example, personally identifying data is covered by the WMF Privacy policy, and a breach of this policy involving any WMF system (eg checkuser tool or this new crm if it comes off) will result in immediate loss of access to any WMF system containing p.i.d. The community will probably want information which identifies you as an editor, and which the committee has decided to accept as part of a private hearing, to be kept confidential with similar protections. On the other hand, allegations that the committee decides should not be dealt with by private hearing should be deleted off the system, not kept forever to haunt an editor who is completely unaware that User:FromMars, with whom she was in a content dispute, wrote to Arbcom saying that she was secretly employed by the FromVenus organisation to edit with multiple sock accounts. This is a basic privacy principle (or should be) - if Arbcom has told the reporting user to go file an SPI and they don't, it should delete it's record within a few months, not keep unsubstantiated allegations hanging around like the proverbial fart in a phonebox.
  • As to correspondence between committee members - assuming that confidential information about other people has been got into a safer environment, any mailing list may still contain confidential information about it's members included in conversation (birthdays, family details, phone number, new job or whatever). In fact, the safest thing might be to say the mailing list is only for that kind of stuff. Discussing cases should be in a separate location, arguing with each other or making the kind of statements that led to this in the first place should be onwiki or by personal email.
  • At the same time, most of the discussion on cases and motions should not have an expectation of privacy at all. Even if not held onwiki (the genuine difficulty here is that everyone and their dog chimes in and swamps the discussion), there should be an expectation that it can be disclosed upon request.

In the (admittedly unlikely) event that both you and JClemens are re-elected, how will you go about working together?

We would just have to, in the sure and certain knowledge that we completely disagree on several things. The committee can work with differing opinions - although part of the scope of discussion on cases and motions is to find a format which will achieve majority support, it is perfectly clear that it makes its decisions by majority vote, not consensus. I think it would be a mistake to expect it to be like a government with a three line whip.

Suppose another situation occurred in which an arbitrator posted inappropriately to the list on a topic where the community arguably has a right to know. I refer to a post where disclosure would not violate the privacy of any editor and where the comments made are inconsistent with an arbitrator carrying out her or his duties. How would you handle this situation?

I'll be honest, right now I'd probably just shut up about it :) In the future, there should not be a reason to put that kind of post on a list (or on a wiki, which seems to be one solution being discussed as I mentioned above) where most of the traffic consists of or is discussing personal information that should be treated as confidential. If a person did so, and another member of the committee was disturbed by it, they should be free to raise it with the person by personal email or onwiki without anyone yelling 'Leak!' or simply to ask for disclosure (see note above about discussion on cases and motions) It's what is in the information that makes it confidential, not where it was posted.

Relating to your recent actions, I am much more disturbed by your misleading your colleagues when asked about the leak than I am about seeking the counsel of a friend. Voting for an arbitrator involves trusting in his or her judgment and whilst I accept that you would not have disclosed personal confidential information, I am concerned that you were unwilling to be fully open about your actions. Please explain to me why I should vote in support of you continuing to serve on ArbCom.

Indeed, while I have said that I was trying to protect my confidante (who had assured me he had not sent the text of anything to anyone - and who I still think was only trying to do what he thought was best), I would anticipate a lot of voters deciding that my judgement is so completely shot to shit that I'm not fit to be an Arb. All I can say is it was the same motivation that has led many to criticise me for being way too lenient and over emotional. There are people behind these usernames, and a lot of the time they are trying to do what they think is best, it just doesn't work out. Arbcom is not the government. It's not there to make policy, rule on content, or 'guide the project' (which is what I do believe is what JClemens wanted to see - an Arbcom that would guide the project on civility). It is just there as the last stage of dispute resolution, to sort out those wrangles that have spilled over into intractable bad behaviour, deal with the odd private matter (mostly alleged paedophiles and stalkers) and to manage parts of the tool permission process on behalf of the WMF. I think I've done that fairly, and fairly well, and would do it fairly well again. There's a balance in many cases between protecting the editing community, who just want a quiet environment and would often favour a 'block the lot of 'em' policy, and being fair to editors who are not always the mendacious, pov pushing trolls the other side (who are always incivil, lying edit warriors) make them out to be.
In the end, it's up to the voter's conscience, opinion, or whatever one chooses to call it. There are a number of good candidates who would do a good job. I'd say pick the ones who take the job seriously as a means of helping good editors to keep editing. Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:40, 30 November 2012 (UTC)

Elen, I'd like to thank you for your thoughtful and informative responses. I would like to ask one follow up, if I may. In response to my first question, you advocate closing down the present mailing list as it is unsuited to handling genuinely confidential information - which I think is an excellent idea, but it wasn't the intent of my question. So, suppose the truly confidential material is moved to a secure storage medium. I presume there would still need to be some off-wiki communication channel for arbitrators. How would you like policy to handle the issue of inappropriate use of that channel by arbitrators? EdChem (talk) 05:01, 1 December 2012 (UTC) PS: If you like, I'd be willing to copy and paste my questions and your answers over to your candidate questions page.

Ah right. I would expect at that point that it wouldn't matter so much what they posted, because the expectation would be that anything that isn't personally identifying (schedule, job or family details etc) could be referred to elsewhere or requested for disclosure. Misuse is a problem where someone cannnot be called to any account because of list confidentiality. If something said on the list can be referred to elewhere, it both removes the kind of issue that came up here, and might make members less likely to post things that they are not prepared to say openly.
I think it would be a good idea to transfer it over to the candidate question page, so please go ahead. Elen of the Roads (talk) 19:22, 1 December 2012 (UTC)
 Done EdChem (talk) 06:20, 2 December 2012 (UTC)
Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
"For bringing such preposterous behavior to light..." I just finished saying my piece on Jimmy Wales' user page and it occurred to me that I was right! Anonymity is only necessary on wiki to protect people physically or financially — it is not meant to provide carte blanche for threats and backstage bullying. In your next term, actively work to end the veil of secrecy around ArbCom deliberations. Carrite (talk) 16:57, 30 November 2012 (UTC)

Thank you. If elected I will work for better protection for the information handled by Arbcom that can affect people in real life, and greater transparency in the decision making processes. Elen of the Roads (talk) 19:54, 1 December 2012 (UTC)


* <- that's a really cheap barnstar.

Hi Elen.

I can only recall once that I've ever spoken to you directly, but I did want to drop by and say hi. Perhaps I don't have the best of reputations on wiki, but regardless of what others think I wanted to express my own personal thanks to you. I know that you've recently gone through some very trying times, and I truly admire the way you've handled it all. Regardless of the end results, I wanted to say it outright that I very much appreciate all you have given to our project. The time, the dedication, the thought, the insight, and in many ways the very heart of who you are as a person. I don't always "get it" when you use phrases that are germane to your own culture, but I see a kind and intelligent person behind your efforts. That means a lot to me.

It seems that the older I get, the more I'm reminded on a daily basis how precious our time is in this reality. I think it is so sad that so much time is expended in railing against other people; and often people we will never have the chance to meet in real life. I hope you'll forgive me this rant on your talk page, but it's something of a cathartic exercise for me. I truly admire your honesty, your integrity, and your kindness. You are a good person. You have a good heart. I wanted to tell you that. I wish I would have told others that when I had the chance. You're good people Elen of the Roads, and I'm a better person for having read the things you've said. All my best to you and all you hold dear. — Ched :  ?  09:01, 2 December 2012 (UTC)

Ched, thank you so much for taking the time to write this. I have always found you to be a very thoughtful person (I don't go much on wiki reputations anyway), and I value your kind thoughts here. At the end of the day, I am convinced that the world goes round more smoothly if we try to understand each other and remember there are real people behind the typed words, even if we never get to know them. Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:33, 4 December 2012 (UTC)


Elen, would you mind taking a look at Special:Contributions/Wtshymanski? In your arguments for blocking PMA/JCS back in February, you included as one of the hints the use of semicolons in edit summaries. Having stumbled upon this move request, I personally don't have the slightest shadow of a doubt over who Wtshymanski (talk · contribs) is. -- (talk) 12:00, 4 December 2012 (UTC)

I believe Wtshymanski probably has a similar secondary educational background to PMA/JCS - his use of language suggests someone who has been taught formal grammar, syntax, punctuation etc. However, PMA majored in humanities, while Wtshymanski almost exclusively edits articles in the science/technology arena (the move request concerns a German chemist). Wikistalk shows only 14 article overlaps in over 100,000 edits between them. PMA might well have advanced the same arguments about the use of ss rather than the German character, but I can't imagine PMA editing articles on halogen reflector lamps variable voltage electrical switches or types of amplification circuitry. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:17, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
There are hundreds of thousands of registered editors and I must be the same person as this other person because I've used semicolons in an edit summary? And because I like the English alphabet to be used in English language text? Get PMA to say he's not me - that's as believable as me saying I'm not PMA. --Wtshymanski (talk) 14:39, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Like I said on your talkpage, while the IP editor asked the question in good faith, I think the answer is that there's no chance you're PMA. I just thought you should be aware of the suggestion. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 15:21, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Although I have been critical of Wtshymanski, (as have many others, I have never seen even the slightest hint of anything underhanded or dishonest in any of his actions, and a deceptive practice like sockpuppetry flies in the face of everything I have observed about his behavior. If they are smart (and Wtshymanski certainly is), sockmasters avoid calling attention to themselves with incivility. --Guy Macon (talk) 15:43, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Ahh, but if they are smarter than you, they'd delibrately be rude so as to relieve suspicion that they are a sockmaster. After all, we're willing to posit individuals who spend every waking or amphetamine-supported moment on Wikipedia obsessively carrying out their incredibly subtle schemes. Thank Jimbo we've got people willing to bring their own Maglites and thermoses to the mall to expose these monsters. --Wtshymanski (talk) 16:23, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
But if they're really smarter, they'll know that we would know that appearing to be deliberately rude as ruse is obviously a ruse, so they would be not rude cause we'd expect a smart sock to be rude. But it really doesn't matter cause there's iocaine powder in both goblets NE Ent 16:43, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
That only works if we're as smart as the hidden sockmaster, but I've postulated that HS is much smarter than we are, so we are not able to discern his (or her) subtle ploy as in fact a ploy at all. --Wtshymanski (talk) 17:45, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Yes, but if they're smarter than themselves, then... wait. Um. Well, now I'm hopelessly confused. But that's what you wanted all along, isn't it, Mr. Hidden Sockmaster! (I concede that NEE's comment is better than mine, because it's written in the fine print somewhere that a Princess Bride reference automatically trumps a South Park reference.) --Floquenbeam (talk) 18:03, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
By "we" I should have clearly said "all of the in-play editors who aren't aliases of HS". This might be a very small number, of course...for all I know, you're *all* tentacles of some malevolent polymath. --Wtshymanski (talk) 19:39, 4 December 2012 (UTC)
Hey, I use semi-colons in edit summaries sometimes, too! And no, Im not ... ;P Pesky (talk) 23:07, 5 December 2012 (UTC)
Indeed. All it shows is that you went to a school where they taught punctuation. Or at least, that's what the Hidden Sockmaster would have us all believe. Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:17, 5 December 2012 (UTC)


You might like to be aware: that Wtshymanski does not approve of IP editors being able to edit Wikipedia. He also has a looong history of seldom crediting any other editor of acting in good faith and never an IP editor.

"Most editors are here to hurt the encyclopedia, not to help it."
- Wtshymanski on his own talk page.

You may also care to read this. A second RfU is apparently in draft as I type. (talk) 14:09, 5 December 2012 (UTC)

None of which makes him a sock of PMAnderson, which was the question asked. Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:15, 5 December 2012 (UTC)
Maybe we shoud be checking to see if is another tendril of the PMA conspiracy? All I know for sure is that there's me and all those other guys...who might be me typing in my sleep. --Wtshymanski (talk) 14:26, 5 December 2012 (UTC)
Er no! The first point that I saw raised was you pointing out that an IP editor may have edited in good faith (here). That makes my point apposite. I had responded on Wtshymanski's talk page, but added it here because I figured (correctly) that the comment would be deleted quickly because Wtshymanski does not like his talk page showing what a tendentious editor he really is. (talk) 16:29, 5 December 2012 (UTC)

───────────────────────── Months later: how long does something like this [19] have to hang around? Every few weeks the spinner lands on my name and I get threatened with some kind of "partly constructed RFC/U" gobbletygook. I'm baffled as to what triggered this latest go around. Since you've been helpful in the past, I'm appealing to you to explain to me what's going on. I don't understand any of these people. --Wtshymanski (talk) 14:03, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

Your inability to "understand any of these people" might be related to your steadfast refusal to have a substantive conversation about your behavior. I'm just saying.
As has been explained to you before, such pages are allowed We even have a template for marking them.
That being said, this one seems to have stalled. Wtshymanski, would you like me to ask DieSwartzPunkt to either move ahead with it or delete it? --Guy Macon (talk) 16:44, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 03 December 2012[edit]

User:Common Sense MMA (MMA SPA)[edit]

Please review the very short history this user has had at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/UFC 157 and determine if Administrative intervention is appropriate. I have tried to explain to the user the policies, yet they do not wish to debate in Wikipedia's rules. Hasteur (talk) 19:51, 8 December 2012 (UTC)

Hasteur has claimed in his nomination that the first time in world history that an openly gay person and a woman will compete for a championship in mixed-martial arts in a globally televised event put on by the world's largest MMA league and which is already being covered in mainstream newspapers such as USA Today and the Detroit Free Press is neither notable nor verifiable. That claim is not just false, but frankly insulting. Anyone with a computer can verify this information and to suggest that the first ever openly gay person and also first ever woman, who is an olympian to boot, competing for a world title on an event televised around the world is not historic is so bizarre that it does not deserve to be responded to with anything that gives it any ounce of legitimatcy, because objectively Hasteur either did not research the subject, is flat out lying, or is being both sexist and homophobic. THAT is the kind of behavior that any freedom loving person would find unacceptable! One need to be a femnist or gay rights advocate to be insulted by this level of ignorance. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Common Sense MMA (talkcontribs) 20:18, 8 December 2012 (UTC)
Oh look, it's a sock. What a surprise. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:04, 8 December 2012 (UTC)
You might also want to look at 10.0.0.x (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) and the IP (talk · contribs · WHOIS). Mtking (edits) 08:12, 10 December 2012 (UTC)
Dennis Brown got the named account. I've not seen anyone socking on a Verizon range before - which is not of course to say that it isn't BStudent0 or similar at his auntie's house. I've given the IP 48 hrs off for harassment - let me know if he reappears. Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:03, 10 December 2012 (UTC)

Miscellany for deletion[edit]

Mmm... yeah. I may have got a little carried away, but basically I meant what I said. I expect it's time to move db's RFA to her userspace, or what do you think? Incidentally, you might like to check out this cool screenshot of the main page on a certain date a couple of centuries ago. Ah, fame. Bishonen | talk 00:23, 9 December 2012 (UTC).

Bloody thing wouldn't be so bad if it was obviously entirely made up, as it is it's a BLP violation (says he went out with some woman off the tv - while this may well be an 'in your dreams' scenario, it's also a BLP violation). Come on, he's had this thing deleted twice before. 'He's fixing it up' really isn't going to fly - both he and you should have realised that posting it as it was (with the addition of tv lady) is just going to get it deleted again. If he wants to 'fix it up' he can do it elsewhere. As for db...has anyone had the temerity to complain? And lived? --Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:28, 9 December 2012 (UTC)


I did reply this morning (USA - Eastern time). Again - sorry for being such a grump. I know you've been through a lot, and I shouldn't have added to it. — Ched :  ?  01:55, 11 December 2012 (UTC)

K... ttyl — Ched :  ?  01:31, 12 December 2012 (UTC)

StillNo time to withdraw[edit]

I am surprised you are standing again for arbcom after your recent record. I refer to the following instances, which are just those I know about and come to mind:

  1. Your ill judged reference to "Obsessive compulsive anal retentive on the autism spectrum"
  2. Your blocking of an account you were involved in an arbcom case with as a party
  3. Your blocking of an editor for posting a cartoon
  4. Your blocking of an editor who had behaved after a warning form another administrator
  5. Your saying an editor "could edit if he changed his ISP"
  6. Your lack of understanding of technical issues, yet running many many checkusers
  7. Your blocks of a user for editing on another Wiki, together with unfounded accusations of socking.

There have been worse abuses by other arbitrators, but I think that is enough to suggest that you should not be standing.

I urge you to withdraw.

Rich Farmbrough, 20:01, 11 December 2012 (UTC).

Isn't the community the best judge of these things? Let's see what happened.--Wehwalt (talk) 20:09, 11 December 2012 (UTC)
Quite. And if Elen were to withdraw it would simply leave one more position available to the crazies, which is perhaps Rich Farmbrough's intention. Malleus Fatuorum 20:12, 11 December 2012 (UTC)
Crazies - on Arbcom? Some mistake, surely. Rich Farmbrough, 20:15, 11 December 2012 (UTC).
I don't think so. There are quite a few of them, and we surely don't need any more. Malleus Fatuorum 20:17, 11 December 2012 (UTC)
Incompetence and defensiveness may be worse than craziness. Rich Farmbrough, 20:37, 11 December 2012 (UTC).
No Elen would be quite within her rights to withdraw. Rich Farmbrough, 20:15, 11 December 2012 (UTC).
Which is to miss Wehwalt's point big time. Malleus Fatuorum 20:17, 11 December 2012 (UTC)
Some people are more talented at missing the point than others. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 20:24, 11 December 2012 (UTC)
Indeed they are. Malleus Fatuorum 20:33, 11 December 2012 (UTC)
Ah the elections are done? Shame. Rich Farmbrough, 20:35, 11 December 2012 (UTC).
Rich, please stop. This is beneath you. Kiefer.Wolfowitz 21:10, 11 December 2012 (UTC)
Sorry I am not active on WP these days and was under the impression the elections were still running (even looked for the place to vote). I would have removed/re-written the section if not for the comments from others. Rich Farmbrough, 21:15, 11 December 2012 (UTC).
You would have been better advised not to make your comments in the first place. Malleus Fatuorum 22:11, 11 December 2012 (UTC)

Apologies and qualified support/sympathy for recent actions[edit]

For the above, Elen I was under the impression that there was still a little time left to run on the elections. I would still urge you to stand down if elected.

Having just seen the tip of the iceberg of the recent imbroglio, I can see you were in a cleft stick, and it appears that your actions were not completely at odds with good whistle-blowing ethics. Having been on the receiving end of the apparatchiks actions, as you know, I can sympathise with what you have been going through. I have been concerned with the abuse of the email list for some time, particularly as the committee has failed in it's legal and ethical obligations regarding this data, and the historical leaked emails show the committee in a bad light, regarding anyone with a good grasp of English as "pompous" for example.

Chin up and get editing. Rich Farmbrough, 21:12, 11 December 2012 (UTC).

What a very strange exchange above. I really don't know how to respond to it other than to deny the rumours about myself and Helpful Pixie Bot and insist that we were just good friends.
I'm sorry you didn't get the chance to vote me out. If elected (which I'm not at all sure is likely, only time will tell) I would feel honour bound to take my seat on the assumption that the community at the very least viewed me as the least worst option :)
I share your concerns about data protection (if Arbcom were a UK organisation subject to our data protection legislation, it would have been fined out of existence by now and all the Arbs would be in jail) but am hopeful that the proposed crm will provide a superior technical solution which limits the prospect of misuse of personal data. I'm also hopeful that some form of FOI policy can be agreed on, so discussions not featuring personal data can be at the very least released on demand after the case or whatever is over. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:51, 12 December 2012 (UTC)
I understand that the Wikimedia foundation once seriously considered moving the servers to Britain, but dropped the idea when they realised that they would have to purge a huge amount of content to comply with British law. My information is that copyright law was the main issue, but I wouldn't be surprised if data protection issues were involved too. JamesBWatson (talk) 09:03, 12 December 2012 (UTC)
Interestingly I filed a request for information that followed the DPA protocol with all then sitting arbitrators, and the committee, some months ago. It was ignored totally including by those members who are based in the UK. There are implications here because the transfer of personal information into and out of the EU is subject to additional restrictions relating to handling those data with the appropriate safeguards, corresponding more or less to the DPA, which is something that has been totally failed in so far.
The committee's motto should be "Nothing so important it can't be ignored, nothing so trivial we can't ban someone."
Rich Farmbrough, 21:11, 13 December 2012 (UTC).
Richard, could you pursue such complaints at the ArbCom pages? Elen has been subjected to a lot, and deserves a bit of rest. You are no doubt right to be upset, because nobody can be just all the time. Even Jesus couldn't keep all his disciples happy. Kiefer.Wolfowitz 21:21, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
I'm having a conversation here, it is useful to see that we are of the same opinion about this, as many other things. Rich Farmbrough, 22:43, 13 December 2012 (UTC).

The Signpost: 10 December 2012[edit]


Cornflower blue Yogo sapphire.jpg

Thank you for your answers to my questions about our respect for editors as living persons, for your illustrations of "fishy" with "grace under fire", for a flavoured tea, - repeating: you are an awesome Wikipedian (22 November 2009)!

--Gerda Arendt (talk) 08:36, 12 December 2012 (UTC)


English muffins[edit]

Hello. I wouldn't normally ask a personal-experience-type question of another editor, but I was so excited by your edit that I have cast caution aside: are you actually British or British-resident or British-visiting (OtherNationalitiesAndLocalitiesMayApplyNoConclusionIsHereinImpliedYourMileageMayVaryAlwaysReadTheInstructions), and have personally consumed muffins in their BrE non-cakey variety and in the AmE "English muffin" species? If so I think I might faint with pure joy. :) That article is depressing me far beyond what should be possible in writing about small breadlike objects... Best wishes DBaK (talk) 09:22, 12 December 2012 (UTC)

I am indeed an Englishwoman, and have eaten and made Lancashire oven-bottom muffins (which are believed at least in Lancashire to be the originals), I have frequently eaten the things sold in supermarkets as muffins (which have a dusting of cornmeal on the outside) and more occasionally American "English muffins" (which must be made with a lot of yeast as they have a texture a bit like ciabatta) and I have both eaten and baked the things with choc chips, blueberries etc that you bake in twists of paper in muffin pans. I also have sources, as I have an interest in historical recipes.--Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:14, 12 December 2012 (UTC)

French fries[edit]

We Americans are weird that way -- we eat "French" fries and "French" toast that an exchange student from France years ago assured us were not French. And we call our language "English" every tho it's obviously not the same thing you folks use over there. (Took a break in the Everglades this past weekend and some Brit sounding folks wanted to come back at night with torches! Seem ungrateful to want to bring fire into our little park.) NE Ent 22:04, 12 December 2012 (UTC)
Presumably you are aware that French fires are so called because the potatoes are "Frenched" - cut into thin strips, before being fried. In English English, of course "being Frenched" has a totally different osculatory meaning. Rich Farmbrough, 21:29, 13 December 2012 (UTC).

French toast[edit]

French fries are Belgian :) The french do make something called pain perdu which is supposed to be the original of 'french toast', but I don't get the impression it's much like American french toast. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:57, 12 December 2012 (UTC)
Nothing like our "eggy bread" really, which isn't at all sweet. That article on French toast is disgrace; wouldn't it be nice to have more than just a few decent articles on food and drink? I keep dipping in and out of dandelion and burdock, a drink I still enjoy, but always end up being drawn towards a brewery instead. No need for any speculation on why that might be. Malleus Fatuorum 23:10, 12 December 2012 (UTC)
I often think that Wikipedia would be as well served by the removal of much of its material as it would by the addition of more, and in that spirit I've made some changes to that French toast article. I would defy anyone to make a credible case that my version isn't a substantial improvement on the original. Malleus Fatuorum 00:18, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
A definite improvement I would say. Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:01, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Improved? Obviously. Complete without the vanilla??? I don't think so. NE Ent 01:11, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Difficulty with "American" food is once you get beyond Restaurant chains you end up with lots of regional variation; Southern "French Toast" is likely to be much sweeter than that in the North. NE Ent 01:11, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Difficulty is all the uncited "In Pakistan, French toast is called Scratch my Arse, and is made only with the milk of virgin cows". You get my my drift I'm sure. Last time I looked Wikipedia wasn't a cookery book. Malleus Fatuorum 01:19, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
In Sweden, a "poor knight" (Fattiga_riddare) is fried bread first soaked in milk, and a "knight" is fried bread first soaked in milk and egg---according to Smalanders. In Ukraine, bread is soaked in milk on one side, and then fried. Kiefer.Wolfowitz 10:30, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

Reliable sources for food[edit]

(talk page stalker)I have weird feelings about most of our food articles. On the one hand, I use WP all the time as a reader when I want to learn more about dishes, particularly those from regions away from myself. The problem is, most of the time I look at one, the editor in me wants to delete at least half of the article, since it's unsourced. But what sources should we use for food? Would citing a recipe book work? But that would only give one idiosyncratic version of the dish. And while I don't doubt that these foods exist, are they all notable? I've never heard of an article on a dish being taken to do they have default notability? And how do we deal with the problem that Malleus points out, wherein much of the article consists of alleged local variations on trans-ethnic/national dishes? WP:V says we should remove all of that info...but somehow it just pains me to do so. I find that often all I can do is to glance at the article as quickly as possible to get the info I need, then rapidly close it so that my fingers don't start reaching for the "edit" button. Qwyrxian (talk) 02:53, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
The sources we use for food articles should be as reliable as those we use for any other articles. Whether individual recipe books would qualify as reliable sources depends on for what and who wrote them. The overwhelming problem with food articles is the "my granny always used clarified butter, but many nowadays recommend ghee, known in Pakistan as ghoo" rubbish. There's probably a Wiki recipe book project somewhere, but this isn't it. Malleus Fatuorum 04:37, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Try b:Cookbook. Not sure how much is going on with it these days, but in the early days of Wikibooks it was one of the largest projects. --SB_Johnny | talk✌ 12:33, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Ah, it's not that bad... BLT, Stargazy pie, Squab pie, Pasty and Clotted Cream all turned out alright ;) WormTT(talk) 12:36, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
I agree that your average coffee table cookbook is no use as a source. Silver Spoon is invaluable when confronted with an animal or vegetable you have never tackled before, but Wikipedia is not a cookbook. There are however authors with an interest in the history, geography, enthnography or what have you of cooking, whose works can form the equivalent of academic sources for dishes and cooking, so it's not impossible.--Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:34, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Aren't most of the food articles we have here because of some cultural significance? Like Worm's example Stargazy pie (gag...). I would think a reputable and well known cookbook would be fine for providing some facts such as ingredients, just not enough to establish the notability, which would require sources more independent from the subject matter. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 23:51, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
The Guardian newspaper features a weekly column by Felicity Cloake - how to make the perfect....whatever [20]. The one thing it shows is that no two cooks ever agree, meaning that no recipe book can be considered a definitive source. The one time it could is if a famous restaurant or chef publishes their signature recipe - like the notorious River Cafe chocolate cake that no-one can make, or Escoffier's original Peach Melba. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:02, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
Agreed there is no definitive recipe for....anything. But what if I provided three different but similar recipes and all were sourced back to reputable sources, like the Guardian, Betty Crocker and Rachel Ray's cookbooks? Wouldn't this be encyclopedic as showing the varieties that are still considered the same dish? One small paragraph might cover all three varieties, listing only the differences? Seems to be the most neutral way to present the information, obviously depending on the article. Just a thought, I'm better at eating the food than writing about it. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 00:12, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
That would be Original Research. You could quote Felicity Cloake or Elizabeth David comparing recipes, but you can't do it yourself. Quite apart from queries like who died and made Betty Crocker a reliable source for anything to do with baked goods :) Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:18, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
Betty Crocker Cookbook I think we did ;-) And I wouldn't compare them, just document that multiple recipes exist. But again, just curious, not proclaiming policy. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 00:44, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
Backfired joke. In the UK, the name Betty Crocker is synonymous with packet 'just add water' cake mixes and ready made frosting that seems to contain the entire output of a chemistry lab. If you want the absolute rock solid reliable source for baking, it's the little book available from BeRo flour when you send in a label and a few bob. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:58, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
Not necessarily -- "But when incorporating research into an article, it is important that editors provide context for this point of view, by indicating how prevalent the position is, and whether it is held by a majority or minority." So if we say the majority of sources do not include vanilla in French Toast, but a notable minority, including Joy of Cooking do we're just following policy. And isn't a difference a simple calculation? NE Ent 01:12, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
It would be if there were a finite number of cookbooks. But their numbers are as the stars in heaven, or the sand on the seashore, for lo, everyone's a chef these days. Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:21, 14 December 2012 (UTC)
(edit conflict) That assumes you have found all the sources, so that might be OR. If you said "Recipes vary, where some such as Betty Crocker Cookbook uses beef(), The Guardian recommends only using pork()" then you aren't giving an opinion except that they vary, and you have backed it up with sources. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 01:23, 14 December 2012 (UTC)

Muffins and Crumpets[edit]

Qwyrxian, I could have written what you wrote, almost down to the last letter. I've had several food articles on my watchlist for ages, and I admit I'm a lot more liberal about letting questionable changes stand than I am with articles on any other topic. When 90% of an article is unsourced to begin with, it's really hard to demand sources for new additions unless they're wildly implausible or off-topic. And there are so many regional variations—even among standard restaurant fare, let alone dishes one would prepare at home—that it's sometimes very hard to judge: what may seem sky-is-blue, duh! obvious to me may be completely unheard of a mere 500 miles away, and vice versa, never mind on a different continent. There's a dearth of online sources that I'd consider reliable, so it's frustrating. (Btw, this thread reminds me: could anyone here explain the precise difference between a muffin and a crumpet? Our articles don't make it clear, and I've read endlessly confusing things off-wiki.) Rivertorch (talk) 07:57, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Please do not use the C-word in a discussion of muffins. That way lies death and madness. I have spoken. :) Best wishes DBaK (talk) 08:09, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
Elen, thank you very much for the reply. (Sorry I've been unable to respond quickly.) I would be very happy to see you show up at the article with some sources. At the moment, as Malleus and other wise people say above, the trouble is that the debate is all very much of the "I have seen and eaten these so they exist/No, I have not seen and eaten these, so they do not exist/or the claimed Am/Br difference does not exist" type. It's very depressing and I am guilty of it as much as anyone - except that I do find it difficult to know what else to do when it is just a game of assertion and counter-assertion and I do feel it necessary to at least make the effort to contradict, based on what I have personally OR-eaten! Of course I should not be doing this but it's a bit like watching people who only know Baroque music claim that rap does not and cannot exist, or vice versa. If you have heard both then it's hard to see people claim that one does not exist, or that there is no difference! We will never really move it on without some decent sources but I quail at the thought of what these might be; and I guess I have to accept the risk that I won't like them - that is, what if someone produces a credible-but-wrong US source which clearly states "The product sold in the US as 'English muffin' is exactly the same as the product sold in England as an 'Unamerican non-cakoid muffin' or whateverthehell whateverthehell"? If that happens, I'm screwed aren't I (not in a good way) and there's then a battle on to find a better source that contradicts this. I have no doubt that my example is plausible, for all the reasons that people say above - food is such a personally and locally accented business that even the knowledgeable will produce what is little more than folklore. However, even references that were debatable would be better than none - they'd at least be a platform for further development and an improvement on the current shouting match. I'm probably wasting too much time on this so I feel guilty encouraging others but do please come and help kick it into shape a bit. And, as someone said, "This talk page is amazing, surely a Wikipedia classic." - it's probably worth reading for a laugh, given the modest admission charge. And yes, it is part of a broader pattern of much-loved, I-know-what-I-know subjects where there's a lot of information but few references and not much sign of, er, encyclopaediaism. (-ness. -dom. -igkeit.) Thanks and best wishes DBaK (talk) 08:07, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
I don't know what part of England Elen is from, though from what she says above Lancashire seems likely. However, I have lived in England for over 60 years, starting in the Midlands and subsequently spending time in East Anglia, the South East, the South West, the North East, and the North West. Until I moved to the North West I had never known the word "muffin" to be used for anything remotely like what Elen calls "Lancashire oven-bottom muffins". In much of Yorkshire those things are called "bread cakes", and in most of the rest of England they are pretty well unknown, under any name. I hate to say it, but what I grew up knowing as "muffins" (and what in my experience were what the word usually meant in most of England before American "muffins" were introduced) were indistinguishable from what Americans call "English muffins". My mother in law, an American, is convinced that "English muffin" is one of those things like "French toast", "Brussels sprout" (which originated in England), and "cor anglais", and is a purely American invention, but she ain't right. Of course, my experience may not be typical, and I can't swear that I actually came across muffins in every one of the places where I have lived, but what Americans call "English muffins" do actually have a well-established history of being the "muffins" eaten in at least substantial parts of England.
Unfortunately, seeing this discussion led me to look at the article Muffin. I was horrified. However, I will resist the temptation to spend my time trying to do anything about it. I long ago learned that it is a futile waste of time trying to do anything with most of these food articles. Whatever improvements one makes, it is not long before someone whose grandmother made the definitive version comes back and messes it up again. JamesBWatson (talk) 09:36, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
James: I think this might be the last time I say this, or perhaps not, but I absolutely promise you, on my honour as [ermm ... whatever] that if you go to Sainsbury's round the corner here in London EC1 and buy a pack of ordinary plain muffins and then go to the supermarket in Manhattan, Kansas, and do the same with English muffins, you will have two absolutely distinct products. I promise you. Really. I have done it. The texture is markedly different. I know I am just doing the same thing again that I have decried, the assertion and counter-assertion, but I am stuck until we get some credible references into the article. I have never seen the AmE English muffin on sale here and would be very interested to see this. But I really should stop this now - I think it is close to affecting my mental health, or perhaps more than close. In passing I note that I missed an opportunity for a gag somewhere in "counter-assertion" (it would have been a bit half-baked, mind you) and also that "Proposal to split" in the English muffin talk page is possibly the best section header I have ever seen, anywhere - whether it was deliberate or not. With best wishes to all, DBaK (talk) 10:53, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
This thread has gone stale. Time to stick a fork in it. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 15:57, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

You've got mail![edit]

Hello, Elen of the Roads. Please check your email; you've got mail!
Message added 09:55, 12 December 2012 (UTC). It may take a few minutes from the time the email is sent for it to show up in your inbox. You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{You've got mail}} or {{ygm}} template.

Mtking (edits) 09:55, 12 December 2012 (UTC)

MMA Event Notability[edit]

You are invited to join the discussion at WT:MMA#MMA_Event_Notability. Kevlar (talk) 18:46, 13 December 2012 (UTC)

I'm reading it thanks. Looks like a good discussion going on. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 17:25, 14 December 2012 (UTC)


Hi, thank you for letting me know about the botched edit. When I hit "save page", I bet there were a few others working on their own and thus it wiped out theirs. I decided to let my outdated comment go and latch onto the current discussion. Thanks again. (DefGrappler (talk) 03:23, 14 December 2012 (UTC))

PD socking[edit]

Where's the vim, though? --Demiurge1000 (talk) 17:56, 23 March 2013 (UTC)

Elen, over a year ago you courtesy blanked and protected the pages of PD, and deleted the sockpuppet categories. This was done with the understanding that he would stop all socking. See e.g. this version of your user talk page, where you promised that " The person behind all the accounts has agreed to stop entirely all attempts to edit Wikipedia - if he doesn't I'll put the main pages back myself, with added vim." He has since socked quite a few times, the latest one apparently being User talk:Hestiaea[21]. Could you please unblank / undelete all his pages and the sock cats, so that the inevitable future unban discussions get the full picture instead of the courtesy blanked one? Thanks! Fram (talk) 11:01, 15 December 2012 (UTC)

I was alerted to Hestiae as you posted this. I'm considering whether to restore the deleted pages immediately or, as you say, when there is an unban request, but if anyone at SPI need's 'em now, they can have them. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:39, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
Considering that even today he was socking (User:, I have undeleted and unblanked all relevant pages and recreated the sock cats. Feel free to "add vim" wherever you see fit. Fram (talk) 16:01, 19 March 2013 (UTC)

Ombudsman commission[edit]

Hi, I contact you as you took part in the discussion on Penyulap's talk page concerning the Ombudsman committee matter. I've started some proposals and discussion on meta about how best to reform the OC to fix the issues it currently has and I would be very grateful if you could drop by and voice your opinion at m:Ombudsman commission/reform proposals. Snowolf How can I help? 12:19, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Special Barnstar Hires.png The Special Barnstar
Dear Elen, I just want to say Thank you for being there to help people and being one of the best Arb's ever! Your Positive dedication and Priceless contributions are a big part of what makes Wikipedia more enjoyable and easy to use for all ~ For now, all I can say is "Keep It Up" :-) TheGeneralUser (talk) 19:17, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

blushes --Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:49, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Support the barnstar, all of it. Thank you, Elen for the blushing colour! I could have used it twice, and avoided the third ;) --Gerda Arendt (talk) 07:08, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Category Freemasons Proposed Deletions[edit]

Hi, as you were a contributor to a previous DRV on the Freemasons category there is another deletion discussion on this. JASpencer (talk) 16:55, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Sorry to see...[edit]

Sorry that you're not there, Elen, as I certainly voted for you. You have always talked a lot of sense. Who will keep the "big boys" in check now, I wonder? But enjoy your break from all the grief. Regards. Martinevans123 (talk) 19:59, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

  • Sad for us, happy for you, Elen. --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:17, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Yeah, I might even get to y'know...edit some articles :) Elen of the Roads (talk) 20:53, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Most welcome, thank you :) Elen of the Roads (talk) 20:53, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

I try as much as possible to avoid the underside of Wiki (drama boards and such), but I did appreciate your willingness to stand up for what you thought was right regarding the whole mailing list issue. You had my vote...guess it wasn't enough, though. Intothatdarkness 21:24, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

I echo the sentiments of the above. Still, bravely done under trying circumstances.--Wehwalt (talk) 21:30, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
Hugs to you; I'd give you another Pony, but for most people, one is enough! Montanabw(talk) 21:40, 18 December 2012 (UTC)


Luca Giordano 014.jpg Barnstar of phronesis
Thanking your for your wisdom, decisiveness, and kindness. Kiefer.Wolfowitz 20:34, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

I am truly honoured. Elen of the Roads (talk) 20:58, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

I don't care[edit]

You know, you could've just not run instead of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory with the arbcom-l screwup? Regardless, my respect for the hard work, insight and good judgement you've added to the committee the past couple years remains unchanged. NE Ent 20:41, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Oh I don't know. I think it's started some interesting threads. Be interesting to see what comes from it. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:00, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Re: Congratulations[edit]

I should be doing the congratulations, depending on how you look at it :) It has been a pleasure serving with you; hopefully we'll see Each other on wiki in less fraught circumstances. Der Wohltemperierte Fuchs(talk) 21:05, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

I couldn't have said it better myself. Thank you for your two years of service as an arbitrator, not to mention all your other service, and your various forms of future service. Regards, Newyorkbrad (talk) 21:35, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
Regardless of what may have happened since November, you dedicated two years to the most thankless and shitty job there is for Wikipedia's sake. That deserves sincere thanks and accolades. — Coren (talk) 22:11, 18 December 2012 (UTC)


Thanks for your good work on ArbCom. Losing elections sucks, but you can take solace that you received the 4th most "For" votes of that big slate. Good luck with your future endeavors on WP now that you're free at last... Carrite (talk) 21:33, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

I'd like to thank you too Elen. I hope you can be free now, and dedicate yourself to other endeavours :) — ΛΧΣ21 21:34, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
I'm sorry to see you weren't reelected. I respect your great ability to cut through to the heart of things. Frankly, I feel the chaos and attacks that that developed in regards to both your and Jclemens actions and which may have influenced this election to be a disappointing sign in Wikipedia's progress or lack of it. Thank you for all of your hard work and best wishes.(olive (talk) 23:10, 18 December 2012 (UTC))
  • It's no secret that I supported you, and will continue to do so in any way I can. Since you finally have an opportunity to work in a drama free environment, consider visiting (or joining us) at Wikiproject Editor Retention. It is a very laid back group that just tries to find non-contentious ways to make the place a little better. It's nice to just help people or bounce around ideas with optimistic people every now and then. Dennis Brown - © Join WER 03:28, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
  • My support was evident, and it's too bad you lost. Well, try again next year. I guess the ArbCom mailing list ordeal made you have less support. ~~Ebe123~~ → report 22:17, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
  • You had a good run. I'm happy you didn't resign and withdraw your application for these elections though, even though there were people wanting you to. The funny thing about being an arb though, is that the majority of WP doesn't know the comittee exists, except for the minority, who are usually those who participate in the WP namespace a bunch. For the rest of them, they just want Wikipedia to keep functioning. And I think during your time as Arb, you've done a great job at that. Best and maybe we can work on some getting some pages up to FA status in the future? --Kangaroopowah 23:59, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
  • Thanks indeed. Appropriate to see so many people lining up to entice you towards new projects. – SJ + 02:42, 20 December 2012 (UTC)

Please accept this[edit]

Homemadebarnstar.png Home-Made Barnstar
You showed honour and integrity in how you dealt with the whole "civility" shitburst. Just as my confidence in Arbcom reached an all-time low, you were there to shore it up. I am sorry you are leaving the thought police but perhaps you are better off out of it. Best wishes, and thanks for being you. John (talk) 21:50, 18 December 2012 (UTC)


Thank you trashcan.jpg Thanks
Thanks for all your hard work, Shearonink (talk) 23:39, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Been expecting something like this[edit]

[22] - although it's an odd one to pick, as there's a massive discussion between myself and Rich that follows the link, and it's clear it's not a personal attack, even though I'll hold my hands up and say for the umpteenth time it was thoughtlessly offensive to people with OCD.

Ex Arbs are normally allowed to retain the checkuser bit - I'm waiting for her to start demanding that be removed as well, plus I expect my admin tools, and a siteban as a final outcome :) Ah, happy days. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:54, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

Be the Other Duck. Be like Paul Atreides (movie version) -- "I will bend like a reed in the wind". NE Ent 14:05, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Elen, it (what you said) is clearly not a personal attack to you (I.e. in your view), because you wrote it (and know what you meant to convey). As a (probably) non-ASD person who knows you reasonably well I know you didn't mean ill by it. But to an outside observer it can be interpreted in no other way, unless as a serious face-value comment which would be bad for other reasons.
But Sandy is not attacking you, despite the fact that you understandably may feel attacked. She is saying, "this is a thing Arbs should not do, yet one did and nothing was done - can we handle this type of thing better? why was nothing done? should there be a policy on this?" and so forth.
Had she said "a random arbitrator said..." it might have felt less personal. I really doubt that she is "after your checkuser bit" - even though I have had issues with some of the cases you have checkusered, I think that it is a role you perform well and are well suited to, and I don't hear anyone saying to the contrary. Rich Farmbrough, 16:32, 19 December 2012 (UTC).
Rich, I meant - it wasn't intended as a personal attack on you. SandyGeorgia has been clear all along in her personal feelings about me, hence I said I was expecting something like this. She has already been among those asking for removal of the Checkuser bit. I was under no illusion that this was going to go away after the election.
I understood what you said, I've added a parenthetical or three to my previous posting to clarify it. I am though, confused by your second point. If she has already asked for your CU bit to be removed, I don't see how you are "waiting for her to demand". As to things "going away" I have been pursued by more or less the same handful of people for over two years now, with occasional help from outsiders, either well meaning, like yourself, or with a long running dispute over something they WP:OWN. Such things never truly go away once they have gone past a certain point. There is no way I can "legally" edit on Wikipedia at the moment, I have even broken Arbcom restrictions writing this. But <meh> I am not going to abandon those who need me, even if I am substantively retired from en: - and effectively have been for many months. I expect that regardless of any such outcome you will continue to do your best to contribute to the project, and I would wholeheartedly recommend the Editor retention programme Dennis mentions, as a real key initiative, potentially, which requires more application of brainpower and experience than it is getting at the moment. Rich Farmbrough, 17:26, 19 December 2012 (UTC).
Based on support votes alone, it looks as if Elen would have come in 4th. Negative voting is a grossly unfair system. Systems that effectively give some users (who use negative votes) many times the number of votes that others (who use only positive votes) get, are generally considered unconstitutional. LittleBen (talk) 18:01, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Well, Elen, ya shoulda been elected, but now that I've gotten myself on Sandy's Shit List too, I guess at least I'm in good company! Montanabw(talk) 18:58, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
I'd guess that likely puts us in a majority here on wiki. — Ched :  ?  21:12, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Unconstitutional? Strange word to use, perhaps you mean unfair. If so then you should bear in mind that "not using negative votes" is a choice, just as is "only voting for the same number as there are vacancies". All eligible voters have the same votes available, so, as far as that goes, I see no unfairness. And while "controversial figures" are the lifeblood of the community, there is good reason not to appoint them to certain posts where the decisions require the confidence of the community. If, however, you wish to change the voting system I suggest you start an RFC for 2013 now. Doubtless a good case could be made for some form of improvement. Rich Farmbrough, 19:39, 19 December 2012 (UTC).

I apologise to all for this bit of a grizzle. Rich and others are right, there are more constructive things to be going at :)Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:02, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

You are more gracious than I would be, Elen. But then, maybe you are tasting the sweetness of freedom from Arbcom, where once again someone is trying to ban Malleus... Montanabw(talk) 22:53, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

The Signpost: 17 December 2012[edit]

Talk page discussions[edit]

I'd like to restore Penyulap's talk page access so they can participate in the active discussion there about the ombudsman commission, currently a game of telephone. May I take it from your earlier comments there you'd be fine with that? Regards, – SJ + 02:45, 20 December 2012 (UTC)

Why is the discussion not taking place on Meta? That is, after all, where the Ombudsman commission is headquartered. With SUL, the account is already "created" there. In fact, I'll go further. Why is the Ombudsman commission looking to discuss the use of privacy-related tools in a public forum? Risker (talk) 04:01, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
As to your second question, Penyulap has admirably posted the request openly, and equally admirably requested an open response. Rich Farmbrough, 13:52, 20 December 2012 (UTC).
It actually is: m:Ombudsman commission/reform proposals --Rschen7754 04:14, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
User:Penyulap has an account with the same name on Meta, which has been active there and is not blocked. They are already participating in a discussion about the Ombudsman commission at meta:Talk:Ombudsman commission#Inconsistent with other wikipedia policy. EdJohnston (talk) 04:41, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
Hi SJ. As others have said, Penyulap can take part in that discussion as they are not blocked on meta, and it (not their talkpage) is where the discussion needs to take place to have any impact (I doubt if even FloNight has Peny's talkpage on her watchlist). Elen of the Roads (talk) 11:38, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
sorry Rich, I do this rarely, but I'm getting sick of your continuous barracking on behalf of Penyulap
FloNight did, I believe, respond on Penyulaps's talk page, that, however, is an irrelevance wrapped in misdirection within in a red herring.
The talk page access,was last blocked by Courcelles, the checkuser that Pen had complained about, afterhe had made the complaint. As such the talk page block should not be allowed to stand.
Were the talk page block clearly justified - say Pen had persistently posted frivolous unblock requests, then at the very least another admin should have reblocked - and at the very least courcelles, if not pre-empted should have unblocked. As far as I can see the response is:
  • Courcelles does not respond, merely deleting or archiving any posts to his talk page
  • The Arbitration committee, who I emailed over this matter have failed to respond (and it took Elen to actually forward the email, the clerks had ignored it) to my email, even to say they are doing nothing. (Again I asked for a response even if it was "we are not acting", and Elen urged them to respond.)
  • Committee members seem to "circle the wagons" to support Courcelles.
  • Elen refuses to say whether she felt "trolled" on Penyulap's talk page or not. Clearly this is difficult for her, because she was dishing out far worse than she was receiving, so saying yes makes her look bad, and promotes the question "Why did she not simply walk away?" , whereas saying no, to some extent lands Courcelles in it.
To me the biggest mystery is why Courcelles did not simply say, as he can even now "My bad" and self revert. No-one wishes to make a bigger thing of this than it is, which is why I tried to get ArbCom to explain to Courcelles what he seems to have trouble seeing (and when I met him he seemed very intelligent and generous hearted fellow, making it all the stranger).
Let me make it clear, the above simply covers the abusive block that followed the checkuser complaint, not the checkuser action in itself, and the block that followed that, which are far more amenable to explanation as mistake.
I would urge any uninvolved admin to restore Penyulap's talk page access. If Elen feels she was trolled she is quite capable of either removing the talk page from her watchlist like a grown-up.
Rich Farmbrough, 13:52, 20 December 2012 (UTC).
  • Follow up for SJ - I don't personally have a problem what you do with Peny's talkpage, but I'm not the one who removed access. Penyulap is very difficult to understand sometimes. I think this does come across to some people as trolling. You can see the whole conversation - at the start I did think Peny was being deliberately obtuse about creating other accounts because of the way he said it. It was only as the conversation went on that it occurred to me that maybe we were looking at a 'feature' of the mediawiki interface, and Peny wasn't being deliberately obtuse at all, just upset.Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:43, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
    Thank you for the followup. I have restored his talkpage access. I have the same impression of his method of communicating.
    To the other comments above: yes, the thread about how to fix the Ombudsman Commission belongs on Meta. And others who do not frequent meta are having a discussion on his talkpage that relates to en:wp, which is normal. Meta is not meant as a substitute for homewiki talkpage access (even if sometimes used that way!). – SJ + 22:43, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
    • SJ already asked Courcelles. Sadly no cooperation was forthcoming. And you are doubtless right that supporting Penyulap is a very bad idea, especially against Arbitrators who I may one day wish to appeal to. Nonetheless I made it clear in my retirement posting that I would continue to attempt to right this particular wrong, and I am not in the habit of going back on my word. Courcelles and Arbcom were both given opportunities to sort this out previously, Courcelles deleted my posts, Arbcom (despite you good offices, for which thanks) never had the courtesy to reply to me. Hardly reassuring behaviour. Rich Farmbrough, 17:52, 20 December 2012 (UTC).
Hello, Elen of the Roads. Please check your email; you've got mail!
It may take a few minutes from the time the email is sent for it to show up in your inbox. You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{You've got mail}} or {{ygm}} template.

Merry Christmas![edit]

ΛΧΣ21 05:46, 21 December 2012 (UTC)

Christmas wham! crunch! urkk![edit]

Tasty Christmas treat for Elen in box, stand well back when opening, avoid life-threatening shock!

Bringing giftwrapped Chocolate Bishzilla for little nominator, omnomnom! Careful you don't get in the way of my cool santa hat morning star, seasonal replacement for biting! Just to keep everybody on their toes! darwinbish BITE 23:30, 23 December 2012 (UTC).

Merry Christmas![edit]

Hey Elen! Wishing you a very Happy Merry Christmas :) TheGeneralUser (talk) 12:26, 25 December 2012 (UTC)

Happy holidays[edit]

The Signpost: 24 December 2012[edit]

Early greetings for the new year[edit]

Giulio Romano - Victory, Janus, Chronos, and Gaea - WGA09625.jpg Best Wishes for a Happy New Year!
May 2013 bring you rewarding experiences and an abundance of everything you most treasure.
Cynwolfe (talk) 16:57, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

Victory, Janus, Chronos, and Gaea (1532–34) by Giulio Romano

Strange how someone I consider a font of humane jollity could poll so divisively—a result that in no way reflects how helpful you are to this community. Cynwolfe (talk) 16:57, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

What would YOU call this one?[edit]

Is [this] called WP:Pointy, not WP:AGF, WP:Hounding, WP:Harrassment, no WP:Collaboration or WP:Canvassing or WP:LynchMob? Read down to the bottom and follow a few links to see how this volatile editor is being wound up. Find some excuse and try to ignore it! Yeah, I may be an IPSockpuppet (see your Wtshymanski complaint above, what was your first fucking clue?) but you're such a bitch and I still love you! Self indeffing now :) (talk) 05:08, 31 December 2012 (UTC)


175px Have an enjoyable New Year!
Hello Elen of the Roads: Thanks for all of your contributions to Wikipedia, and have a happy and enjoyable New Year! Cheers, Northamerica1000(talk) 19:31, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

Send New Year cheer by adding {{subst:Happy New Year 2013}} to people's talk pages with a friendly message.

Request assistance with Anonymous Editor[edit]

User has been making a string of non-constructive edits to the project. After adding a non-notable uniquely named individual to various "People from ..." pages, edits were made to pages about a religion. First links to pages of things for sale from the uniquely named individual were added; after those edits were reverted, User blanked the resources sections that contained links to books about the religion which appear on Amazon and WorldCat. Whatever you can do will be most gratefully appreciated. Ellin Beltz (talk) 07:57, 1 January 2013 (UTC)

Edit stalking/repeated false vandalism accusations by User:Greaymarshess[edit]

Basically, the whole discussion is here [[23]] now.TJD2 (talk) 08:19, 2 January 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 31 December 2012[edit]

I assume you are the "Elen" User:Rich Farmbrough is referring to on my talk page @ User talk:Brewcrewer#Sepsis II. Any assistance would be appreciated. --brewcrewer (yada, yada) 02:46, 3 January 2013 (UTC)

Belated Happy New Year with a Toast![edit]


Here's a toast to the host
Of those who edit wiki near and far,
To a friend we send a message, "keep the data up to par".
We drink to those who wrote a lot of prose,
And then they whacked a vandal several dozen blows.
A toast to the host of those who boast, the Wikipedians!
- From {{subst:TheGeneralUser}}

A Very Happy (belated) New Year to you Elen! Enjoy the Whisky Emblem-cool.svg ~TheGeneralUser (talk) 05:24, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

Happy New Hot Cross Egg[edit]

Thanks everyone for the good wishes, chocolate, fish, whisky (particularly appreciated) and all else. I've not been around due to a combination of rushing around, determined relaxing, Caorunn, and a slow wave of lurgie passing through the family. Also, this place seems to have got at the cooking sherry and gone mad on Boxing Day, and I'm not sure it's recovered yet :). Still, I hope all of you had excellent holidays, whatever and however you celebrate them. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:52, 6 January 2013 (UTC)


Your name was mentioned here. I'm not involved at all, just happened to notice that you weren't notified.— alf laylah wa laylah (talk) 14:17, 7 January 2013 (UTC)

Thanks. It's pretty much a troll - enough admins in the Troubles area know who MoAinm was previously. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 18:01, 7 January 2013 (UTC)

Letter k topic ban[edit]

Hi, and happy new year. As a recent Arbcom member I was wondering if you could take a quick look at WP:AN#Admin attention to an RFC/U, please and suggest whether from what you know about Arbcom an appeal is warranted. It is "only" 25,000 words, so I do not recommend spending more than 5 minutes. Basically there is a keyboard character that I can not mention that I am banned from using, and in editing documents I have already found multiple noncontroversial ways it would be helpful. The question, in a nutshell, is an editor being tenacious or tendentious? For example, there are other editors who have agreed that certain words might be spelled better with a k, or some other character, and I have recommended not bringing this up at all this year, other than in one or two RMs, each of which last only a week, and actually discuss the issue instead of parroting that it is disruptive to ask the question. Should any come up over the next six months, the deck is stacked, by eliminating one of the editors known to recommend the letter k, or other character. Secondly, I have characterized the RFC/U and the AN action as simply a result of the incivility at the MOS, which has not abated. Any thoughts? Apteva (talk) 18:06, 7 January 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 07 January 2013[edit]

Quoted in arb case[edit]

Hey, Elen. I just realized I should have told you that I quoted you in the Arb case I recently requested. Sorry for the delay!--SarekOfVulcan (talk) 19:46, 9 January 2013 (UTC)

No worries. I'd have added something about the time I blocked him for 3 months, but it looks like its a snowball accept. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:41, 9 January 2013 (UTC)

Anonymous nonsenser[edit]

Anonymous user is persistently messing with a wide variety of articles. Any assistance would be most gratefully appreciated. Ellin Beltz (talk) 16:56, 11 January 2013 (UTC)

Done --Elen of the Roads (talk) 17:18, 11 January 2013 (UTC)

Friendly notification regarding this week's Signpost[edit]

Hello. This is an automated message to tell you that, as it stands, you are set to be mentioned in this week's Arbitration Report (link). The report aims to inform readers of The Signpost about the proceedings of the Arbitration Committee in a non-partisan manner. Please review the draft article, and, if you have any concerns, feel free to leave them on the talkpage (transcluded in the Comments section directly below the main body of text), where they will be read by a member of the editorial team. Please only edit the article yourself in the case of grievous factual errors (making sure to note such changes in the comments section). Thank you. On behalf of The Signpost's editorial team, LivingBot (talk) 00:00, 14 January 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 14 January 2013[edit]


I see you've dealt with him in the past. I'm having issues with him in his present username "Guerrila of the Renmin" where he has taken ownership of not one but three disambiguation pages when I discovered one of them was using CJK characters (now at AFD), one he redirected to the first, and a third he kept because the items listed are written with different CJK characters than the first. What should be the next course of action with this guy before he attempts to clean start again because he's up to his usual tricks.—Ryulong (琉竜) 11:29, 21 January 2013 (UTC)

You have got to be kidding me. I only (remove content/redirect and) revert you once on each DAB page (which I will not do until the AFD closes as a certain "Keep"), and you jump to conclusions that I will "attempt to clean start again" and scramble for administrative assistance. Give it a break. GotR Talk 16:00, 21 January 2013 (UTC)
You threaten to have my "other rights taken away" because I reverted your removals of places named "Pine Mountain" on Songshan. How is this not an issue?—Ryulong (琉竜) 04:09, 22 January 2013 (UTC)
You were abusing rollback for what was clearly not vandalism or otherwise intentionally disruptive editing. Yes, my edit summary was blunt, but you must bear the full brunt of responsibility for this; we both know very well that I alone cannot have your "other rights taken away", and that if you continue using rollback in such a manner, the community will not look kindly upon you. You need to start breaking out of your present mentality.
Oh, and more than 24 hours have passed since you came here whining; I have fulfiled my promises of not removing from/redirecting each DAB, so you have no right whatsoever to continue complaining (with not an iota of evidence, too) about OWNership. GotR Talk 21:05, 22 January 2013 (UTC)


I see that your edit level has severely declined. I hope you're not planning to retire :( — ΛΧΣ21 21:20, 22 January 2013 (UTC)

Not so much retire as leave before I'm forced out I'm afraid. I am advised (by a member of Arbcom, so I'm not at all sure whether I'm meant to keep this seekrit) that they are holding a seekrit discussion about removing my oversight and checkuser right (because of course the inhabitants of this place don't trust me). Of course I don't get to see or take part in the discussion, and when they've finished the seekrit discussion (they have kindly told me) they will give me a chance to disappear quietly.
Amusingly, Coren announced on being elected that he had 're-activated' all his archives, confirming my previously stated concern that the system fires your personal information into the mailboxes of third parties who can then retain it whether they are still authorised or not.
To deflect attention from this painful fact, the Committee seem to have decided that the world will be safer without me, as I'm obviously so much of a risk to your sensitive personal data that I'm employed in a Data Compliance role in the UK (which has some of the strictest laws protecting sensitive personal data). So I guess I'll not be around much - I'm sure the removal of CU and OS will be followed in a few months by some grounds or other for a desysop, or perhaps I'll just be blocked for saying this.
I never met such a crazy setup. An open wiki with a lead organisation that is persecuting an ex member basically for not covering up the crazy behaviour of another member is mad enough. But to then say that person cannot be trusted with actual personal data, while happily maintaining a setup that guarantees that any personal data you send them gets immediately fired all over the internet, is just, well, mad.

So its so long and thanks for all the fish, I guess. I might stop by occasionally and see whether the account is still unblocked. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:23, 22 January 2013 (UTC)

I'm sorry about that, Elen. I see how utterly unproductive those who tear down others here are.--Wehwalt (talk) 23:25, 22 January 2013 (UTC)
Well, no worries. I never was much of an editor. Although maybe I'll get the chance to fix that English muffin article some time. Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:31, 22 January 2013 (UTC)
Editors are not determined by statistics. It's about what you are here for.--Wehwalt (talk) 23:36, 22 January 2013 (UTC)
Wow. This is just really unexpected and very sad. I still don't understand how a trusted member of the community like you could have been overkilled, but I think that this is just a maximized version of what happened to me some time ago (a bigger fish, a bigger weapon). I am starting to think that ArbCom was the worst thing that happened to you. — ΛΧΣ21 23:34, 22 January 2013 (UTC)
  • I'm sorry (and, stupid, stupid me, surprised) to hear this, Elen. I don't always agree with you, but I've always felt you had a large reservoir of clue, which is more valuable than people who agree with me all the time. When I've saved up my pennies and created Grownupedia, I'll ping you. Of course, we won't need checkusers and oversighters because we'll all be grownups... Still, it will be a point of pride if the Grownupedia's English muffin article is better than WP's. --Floquenbeam (talk) 00:36, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
    • Perhaps, Elen, you should make public the email you were actually sent rather than the one you seem to have invented? (Given that your description of it doesn't seem to resemble the former in the slightest).

      Oh, and while you're at it, you might want to mention that my data retention policy you seem so stunned with now was detailed over a year ago to both the Committee and the foundation general counsel and that you didn't have any objections then. — Coren (talk) 04:26, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

Hi Coren. Tackling that last one first, you're clearly not doing anything wrong in US law according to counsel. I mentioned you only because I got the sense that people did not believe me that Arbitrators could retain these archives, and you handily confirmed that they did. In UK law, an organization would have been fined out of existence for the way that mailing list worked. Both countries have a completely different definition of private information and the expectations pertaining thereto, and it's not up to me to decide whether the current approach is kosher or not, although I would counsel anyone in the UK never to send sensitive personal data to Arbcom as were they an organisation which fell under the UK Data Protection legislation (which clearly they are not) their data security is lousy.
As to the email, I don't mean to sound cranky, but as you sent it from the mailing list and copied it to Arbcom, I believe I am unable to repeat it here as it is of course top secret (I have pointed out previously that the mailing list policies prohibit anyone who has received an email from Arbcom from circulating it or posting it). I do concede that it contains the line "Any response you send will be circulated and considered before taking a decision" - I do not consider either the email or that line to be the equivalent of hearing and being able to respond to my accusers, and I prefer not to take part in show trials if you don't mind.
I appreciate that your intention in sending it was to 'do the right thing'. Can I ask why is this being done by private motion and not onwiki? Probably not. I do think Arbcom in general ought to have the courage to place their opinions of me onwiki, not still be hiding behind a cloak of private discussion, with the sop of getting an individual to send me an email that the Committee know perfectly well I am prohibited from sharing with others.

Response to motion[edit]

I do not believe I can be prohibited from replying to the motion onwiki, and so that is what I intend to do. Should any other Arbs communicate their concerns to me, I will respond here.

To respond to the issue that Coren posed, which was along the lines that he did not trust that I would not suddenly decide that some other piece of information should not be kept private. I have a very clear understanding about the need to protect personally revealing information provided by or on individuals. Following UK law, such data must not be shared with individuals who are not authorised to see it (and numerous large fines show the vigour with which this is followed up). The WMF privacy policy relating to OS and CU data covers the same types of data and has the same restrictions (I wonder if it is modeled on European law, which is stricter, to give it the widest possible applicability). It contains more than adequate provision to cover the exceedingly rare situation where a CU or OS might find themselves in possession of information that urgently needs to be lawfully passed to a third party (eg the Feds), and it is clear that the WMF takes an active role in managing that, through their emergency mail system.

That (to my mind) is quite a different situation to revealing outrageous statements made by Wikipedia Arbitrators which, in the opinion already given by several lawyers who perused the situation, could never have had an expectation of privacy in the first place. What must I think be in Coren's mind is that an oversighter can see an allegation about a third party that warranted oversight. Some allegations might be explosive and have very serious consequences (claiming someone is a paedophile or an undercover cop could endanger their lives), others less so, but the key thing is that it must be personally revealing information to be oversighted under the the WMF policy. If the text does not fall into that class, then it should not be oversighted (handily allowing any administrator to delete gross insults that reveal no personal data). If it is oversighted, then it is covered by the policy and can only be revealed to a third party under the constraints imposed by that policy. That's a bright line.

In the case of Checkuser data, it is a little more complicated. The WMF will only provide it to a third party on being presented with the right order from the right court. Consequently, a checkuser should theoretically never be discussing CU data with non CUs. It sometimes happens on the Functionaries list, which has non-CU functionaries subscribed, but all are agreed on that list that it shouldn't happen, and it certainly must not happen anywhere else. At the same time, it is sometimes necessary to put information into SPIs, particularly when dealing with persistent vandals and diligent sockfarmers - and paid editing rings that are socking from each other's locations. There's more of a balancing act here - the minimum necessary information to the smallest number of people, being aware that "editing thru a proxy in China" conveys no identifying information, "editing on a RoadRunner range" just says they are in the US while some Verizon ranges practically give you a street address, "range" will tell anyone who does a lookup that the editor is in the North of England, "IP is assigned to FooCorp" means you've just revealed where the guy works even if you haven't posted the IP address, and "always edits from FooCorp IP between 23.00 and 06.00 means that FooCorp can finger him as the night watchman. Elen of the Roads (talk) 11:42, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

I have, of course, no objection to discussing the matter here if you so prefer. That email was sent to you, and you can dispose of it as you will; the Committee would not have disclosed it without your permission, but you are free to do so.
I don't think anyone has any doubt that you are well aware of the constraints of the law (certainly nobody on the Committee does), and indeed even the more exacting standards of European law, and that you would follow that religiously. The problem lies in that our rules (the Committee's and the Foundation's) do not align with those laws: some things European law covers that US law does not, and some things our policy protects that the law does not. No arbitrator is allowed to simply pick and choose by fiat what should or should not have been covered by our rules, yet this is exactly what you did. Had you constrained yourself at expressing concerns (publicly or not) that you were being bullied by Jclemens, it would have been okay. Demand that the Committee release the email? Kosher. Hell, seek help from the Foundation if you felt ArbCom wasn't doing enough to protect you? Also fine. (Incidentally, I do agree that the Committee had handled Jclemens's behaviour poorly but, given the proximity to the election and the sudden worries around a new leak that just sprung up...)
What you did, instead, is decide unilaterally that it was okay for you to leak that email (and part of another) to a buddy of yours. You knew it was against our rules to do so, but decided that you were justified in ignoring them because they didn't match some other set of rules you preferred. In short, I don't have a worry that you might discard our confidentiality rules when you don't find them agreeable – I observe that you already have.
And then you lied and obfuscated to hide what you did. You claim, post-fact, that this was done to protect the person you sent to email to, but that rings hollow: they had nothing to be protected from; all they did is pass along an email that they never were under any obligation to keep confidential to begin with.
And lastly, come the claims of whistleblowing. You started claiming, long after it was determined you were not being truthful, to have done so out of a desire to expose (or, in your words, "not cover up") misbehaviour by another arbitrator. Funnily(!) enough, I agree that Jclemens's behaviour was bad enough, probably, for outright expulsion from the committee and that – if the Committee failed to act – making that behaviour known publicly so that the community could act (if only with their voting ballots) might have been entirely defensible.
But that's not what you did. A whistleblower makes a matter public or brings it to the authorities, then owns up to their action. If a rule had to be broken in order to do so, then they accept the consequences and take their lumps. What you did is gossip to at least one friend, then lie and cover it up when the breach of the rule became apparent. You didn't step forward to make a great wrong public, you desperately tried to cover up when your gossip leaked beyond your control. You didn't own up to your action as ethically justified or necessary, you lied and misdirected to conceal your involvement as long as you could.
So, no, I do not trust you. — Coren (talk) 13:35, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

Hi Elen. I'm leaving this note here to suggest a way forward and to give a bit more background. As you know, ArbCom tends to have a lot of things on its plate at the same time. This was one matter which was being discussed, and then brought to a head by Coren's e-mail to you. That e-mail was not from the committee, but from him with the committee copied in (though I for one hadn't seen that e-mail before it was sent). As you correctly surmise, that e-mail prompted more discussion. At some point in that, I checked when you had last edited and noticed that it was sometime previously (10 days or so) - Coren can probably clarify whether he had noticed your absence or not. That would have been a good point to send a follow-up e-mail asking for a brief response from you when you got back as to whether you wanted this discussed in public or dealt with by e-mail. You are right that you should have been brought in on this much earlier, and that a public discussion is in some ways easier than e-mail and certainly more transparent, but we are where we are now. I hope we can wind this back a bit and start again. I have suggested to the rest of ArbCom that we move this discussion to a public fora (somewhere better suited for this than your talk page), but it is quite possible that the decision may be that most of the discussion needs to remain internal, though I am happy to state on-wiki my views on the matter. It may take us a while to sort this out, but let me know what you think and how you would like this dealt with. Thanks. Carcharoth (talk) 01:39, 24 January 2013 (UTC)

Thanks Carcharoth. I don't myself see there being particularly a privacy issue with this - it's surely down to individual Arbs views which would, to my mind, be better expressed in public. It's also likely to spark a more general discussion - Coren refers to 'the rules' above, as if they are a monolith, but the whole thing showed that there are actually at least three 'rules': the WMF privacy policy (which appears to be bound by law in various countries and is therefore a bright line, as well as being nice and clear in its application), that part of the Arb Policy which relates to privacy and confidentiality (which is approved by the community and subject to change only by approved procedure, but which from the opinions offered by several lawyers at the time is clearly not as restrictive as Coren for example believes that it is), and finally the custom and practice of Arbcom not appearing in any written policy, which is that its mailing list is under the seal of the confessional, and verbatim text from it can never be quoted.
I can understand a concern that any onwiki discussion will just spiral off. A more managed venue than my talkpage would definitely be good. I will await further communication. Elen of the Roads (talk) 10:44, 24 January 2013 (UTC)
Thanks, Elen. It may not be until after the weekend now, but I (or another arbitrator) will update you when we have decided where to go from here. Will you be around on-wiki this weekend if there are any questions that arise relating to this? What I think may happen (certainly the way I would approach this) is for each arbitrator who has concerns to state them on-wiki (much like Coren did above), likely in the context of a motion designed to resolve this, and for you to respond individually or collectively, and then a decision taken. My own concern is that I don't want to take a decision until I've heard what you have to say, but I think I'm right in saying that you don't want to respond until you have the assurance of a public venue (partly to air your concerns as you have above)? Would that be about right? Carcharoth (talk) 20:41, 25 January 2013 (UTC)
I think you've summed it up well. Given the amount of snow coming down outside, I don't expect I'm going anywhere outside walking distance, so I'll check in anywhere you want over the weekend. Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:18, 25 January 2013 (UTC)

A brief update[edit]

Just to tell you where things are now and not leave you hanging: we're currently hashing out the details of a proposed motion that will be posted publicly for voting (I expect /Motions is the most likely venue), and where you will have have an opportunity to respond. That motion will not propose removal of your permissions; that alternative has been robustly discussed (to say the least) and it would have passed or failed by the barest of margins depending on an abstention and an inactive arbitrator – and nobody feels that a decision that marginal on such a delicate issue is advantageous to anyone or the project.

So that you are not taken by surprise, the proposed motion will consist of a strong admonition and a reminder; I expect it should be ready for public discussion in a day or two. — Coren (talk) 16:07, 31 January 2013 (UTC)

Thank you for the update Coren. I shall await further announcement. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 16:12, 31 January 2013 (UTC)
I'm thinking per WP:SELF I shouldn't update Star chamber to include Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee, right? NE Ent 17:21, 31 January 2013 (UTC)
I should say that WP:POINT is the one you are thinking of, or perhaps WP:POINTLESSHYPERBOLE? I mean, after all, exactly like the Star Chamber court we didn't inform Elen of charges... oh. Well, we certainly didn't give her the opportunity to comment or... oh. Well, we certainly used it as a political cover for a pre-ordained conclusion that couldn't possible change... oh. — Coren (talk) 18:31, 31 January 2013 (UTC)
Those of us not privy to the star chamber secret tribunal may not be entirely comfortable with seeing Elen's character and community spirit impugned at vague length on this page, followed by a threat of "strong admonition and a reminder" in a day or two that's stretched to a week. I had been hoping to learn more about ArbCom's standard of ethics. I'm fine with saying it's nobody's business, if Elen is satisfied with how the matter has been resolved. But while I've never been interested in exercising any powers other than reason on Wikipedia, I do like to be a concerned citizen of the community, aware of its norms, procedures, and codes of behavior. I suppose I'd like to hear either "it's been resolved privately, nothing to see here, move along," or a clearer articulation of the issues we should be aware of as a community. Cynwolfe (talk) 21:40, 6 February 2013 (UTC)

Non-arb and arb commentary[edit]

Welcome to the masses; you're treatment is not uncommon for us grunts. Indeed, you were on the Arbcom that decided I was too untrustworthy to have the CU (or OS I forget exactly) bit because of a comment I made about publicly logging IRC... despite managing to be a perfectly OK OTRS agent, and a RL digital forensic analyst (yep, I iz in ur computers!). So.. I do have sympathy. Chin up and sock it to the secrecy :) Perhaps consider it a learning experience ready for a new Arbcom stint in a few years. --Errant (chat!) 12:00, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
 ;\ I remember that. The plain truth is that except for the odd candidate that no-one would trust further than they could throw them for some very obvious reason, it just comes down to personal view/like/dislike. Never seemed very satisfactory, but when secret ballots were held, I gather nobody voted. Before that, I believe and RfA type process was used, which was replaced with the secret ballots . That wasn't felt to be very satisfactory either (but I could be wrong about that - it's before my time). Not sure I'd stand for Arb again - too much like that Greek guy rolling the rock up the hill. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:43, 25 January 2013 (UTC)
Yeh, I know - the only thing that annoyed me was that it was dressed up with an excuse. I can't stand that sort of dishonesty. I guess what you're feeling now is what a lot of people dragged before Arbcom feel - so I think you should think about standing back up there. It's like... how politicians are so disconnected from the populace, but every so often one falls to disgrace and comes back "changed". I dunno, I might have drunk too much good claret :) Anways; I think in this situation you were placed between a rock and a hard place, and although I voted Nay for you (because I believe it is worth changing arbcom membership as much as possible), you have my support for what you did. All this faux secrecy hides a lot of bad stuff (TM) and in exposing just a small portion of it I think you've upheld the core of our communities ideals. My advice? I find walking away for a bit, or narrowly focusing on a non-contentious topic that interests you, is like a balm. And eventually people will forget you are a BAD person(TM) leaving you in peace. Tools 'r' not the be all an end all. Are you interested in WW2 history? I have a whole topic area that desperately needs some lurving... :D --Errant (chat!) 23:29, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

Elen, Coren has an interest in keeping alleged Arbitator misbehaviour under the super secret seal of the mailing list archives, the fallout from the his block of Giano makes it clear that his own actions have been and are being concealled from the community by the policy on list secrecy. Any former Arbitrator who has misused the list has reason to fear disclosure and the idea that you are unable to distinguish between genuinely sensitive personally identifying information and material that should have been addressed on-wiki is a fiction – in reality, it is precisely because you are capable of understanding the distinction that you are feared. I am surprised and disappointed that you are being targetted but not at all surprised that Coren would be leading the charge. Unlike you, however, I have great difficulty assuming that the motivation is about potential misuse of the tools or the information to which you have access; that is merely a pretext for action, and I hope that there are enough members of the current Committee who recognise this. EdChem (talk) 12:30, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

I see this as the unending hounding that eventually loses us another worthy contributor who happens to be politically disfavoured.--Wehwalt (talk) 15:01, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
Elen, you should not be denied a public hearing. Elen, nobody should not be denied a public hearing, and nobody should be denied an opportunity to defend himself publicly. The only thing I cannot understand why while being an arbitrator you bluntly denied the same right to others or simply ignored requests for transparency. I guess what goes around comes around, and now you've found yourself on the receiving end of the Arbitration Committee. (talk) 17:03, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
I believe that she did so because it was what she was entitled to do; it was part of her job as an Arbitrator to behave like that. Otherwise, she would have been removed way before. I, as a member of a family surrounded by politics, understand how this works. If you are good enough, you will be removed by your peers. If you are bad enough, you will be killed by community. Then, the only choice you have is to balance both. Of course, you can weigh in for one side (e.g. to be as good as possible, or as bad as possible) without breaching the red line and being shown the door, and this will become the textbook that the whole community will read when assessing your contributions to the project. — ΛΧΣ21 20:50, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
The thing is that sometimes "balancing" is not an option because as I said before what goes around comes around, and besides there's also this. (talk) 22:32, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
I always feel that conversations have reached a low ebb on this project when someone is quoting that poem. Although I do sometimes feel that Wikipedia has reached the point where Cromwell is suppressing the Levellers. However, in both of the cases you quote, silence was the only answer, in that no evidence could be presented because there was none to present. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 10:49, 24 January 2013 (UTC)

Isn't it interesting that Coren chose to add a "Kibitzers" sub-heading. According to the Kibitzer article offers "(often unwanted) advice or commentary" and I have no doubt that Coren would prefer no advice or commentary on this issue. More interestingly, however, kibitzing is a chess term referring to a spectator or spectators "making comments on a chess game that can be heard by the players. Kibitzing on a serious game while it is in progress (rather than during a post-mortem) is a serious breach of chess etiquette." Consequently, I feel the need to point out:

  1. ArbCom contemplating sanctions on an editor is not akin to a game, no matter how much any arbitrator might wish to see editors as pawns to be controlled at will.
  2. ArbCom do not rule the community, and commenting on proposed ArbCom actions is not a breach of etiquette. Further, the community are not supposed to be spectators who have no role in contributing to ArbCom proceedings.
  3. Coren may view himself as manoeuvring to win a contest and defeat Elen and thus that pointing out to Elen other potential motivations is unfair, but all that illustrates is his bias and demonstrates how inappropriate is his approach here.
  4. I note from Carcharoth's post that he felt the need to inform Elen directly that Coren's "e-mail was not from the committee, but from him with the committee copied in (though I for one hadn't seen that e-mail before it was sent)." Coren's on-wiki comments to date did sound (to me) like he was representing himself as spokesperson for a Committee-agreed position (though I haven't seen the email, of course). Three weeks into a new term as arbitrator, Coren is apparently already pursuing unilateral authority, and Carcharoth's comments indicate a desire to set aside this behaviour to instead focus on a more appropriate discussion of Elen's situation ("... but we are where we are now. I hope we can wind this back a bit and start again"). Inappropriate arbitrator behaviour will continue to go unaddressed, I fear.
EdChem (talk) 07:00, 24 January 2013 (UTC)
(Note, just so as not to wrongfoot EdChem's comment above: I'm disappointed that Coren created a section with the condescending header "Kibitzers" for the non-arb commentary here. Really, Coren..! Separating these posts from Olympus up above may be convenient, indeed, and I'm not removing the separate header; but I'm changing it to "non-arb commentary", which seems appropriately dull and neutral. Bishonen | talk 21:20, 25 January 2013 (UTC).)
Thanks Bish. As you say, a dull and neutral header seems preferrable here, where the opinion of the community does appear to me to have quite a bit of relevance, and not be kibitzing at all. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:49, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
I wish formally to state that I am not here kibitzing but (broadly defined) gongoozling. I do hope that this helps. Best wishes (talk) 11:27, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

I am dismayed to see Elen considering stepping back from Wikipedia and more than dismayed to see efforts to push her to a situation where she can't use the abilities she has to Wikipedia's best interests. The election shows Elen has a lot of community support and had her situation been heard with out the drama that stalks some of Wkipedia's pages she'd probably have more. I have always had concerns about unilateral power-too many editors damaged by deliberate biased actions. And I have equal concern with the power generated on talk pages to create chaos, and emotional upsurges that have little meaning in terms of logic and reality. This is a collaborative community which means we can use a community in both healthy and unhealthy ways. I 'm not saying Coren is doing anything beyond voicing a concern, but the impact could be as has happened in the past to create a volatile situation that impacts unfairly another person. I sure do wish Wikipedia had a visible-to-the-community-page where something could be explained and where the general community could not come in and pile on, colouring and perhaps twisting what has been said and done. Another fine mess.(olive (talk) 17:46, 24 January 2013 (UTC))

  • Coren may not have thought through the implications of his unhappy turn of phrase. If he did, his thinking was not representative of the view of this arb, nor (I'd guess) that of a majority of my colleagues. AGK [•] 11:37, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
  • Also, Elen, I see above that you are under the impression we are out for your head. This is wrong. Nobody intends to ever propose any action other than the revocation of your advanced permissions. I certainly do not think your sysop rights have been questioned, nor that a siteban is being proposed. AGK [•] 11:42, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
I think Wehwalt's comments about Charlie Brown and the football probably explains the reaction - although I fully accept your assurances as to your own motivations. I think everyone is aware that there are at least three prominent editors who would be happy to see me sitebanned for insufficient application in the bunny boiling department, so I think it's not a wholly fantastical theory on my part. Still, what will be will be. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 15:01, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
  • The move to expel Elen from ArbCom was extraordinary as there was no complaining party; a second such procedure doesn't exactly give assurance for the future, AGK. At some point, Charlie Brown quite rightly concludes it's irrelevant which way the wind is blowing as he runs up to kick the football that Lucy is holding. There's also something about sticks and the present state of equines that I would urge upon the Committee.--Wehwalt (talk) 11:55, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
  • @ Wehwalt. As you (and we've) seen in the past, a bully never likes to be challenged, so it's not surprising when they call in their friends and markers. @Elen. You still have my full, complete, and unadulterated trust. Just the view from one peon. — Ched :  ?  14:45, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
  • Elen, just a lurker weighing in that you are on the side of the angels. If The "Queen of Hearts" ("off with her head!") contingent is targeting you, and they are, don't let them run you off, we need you and those like you - too many good, solid contributors are being run off for, at most, momentary brain farts - and said momentary brain farts were often filled with good intentions with the goal of improving "teh wiki" ;) . There are some seriously problematic people on-wiki, but the ones I am thinking of are not you, but some (not all) of those in positions of power and influence. I feel sad that they have you in the beam of their magnifying glass, but don't let 'em fry you! Montanabw(talk) 00:32, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
Thanks. Oddly, the effect has been probably the opposite of that intended - I had been busy elsewhere and taking a bit of a break, but it's brought me back here. I'll just have to wait and see what comes next. Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:28, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
  • For the record, I used "Kibitzers" in its "A back-and-forth conversation outside the main issue, where the people having the conversation are not directly participating" sense (which I had believed the be the primary, if not sole, meaning). I did not mean to imply that the commentary was particularly unwanted, only that it was from uninvolved parties and the separation was only meant to allow dialogue about the substantive matter to flow without interruption. — Coren (talk) 00:30, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
  • Where the heck did you get that definition? Kibitzer and wikt:kibitzer are pretty clear the word means the key element of the word is unwanted. NE Ent 03:41, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
I always thought a kibitzer was the guy two stools along at the bar, offering unsolicited advice on your choice of drink/date/spouse/job/car etc. The sort of guy the barman has to rescue you from. Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:35, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
To me, kibiters bring to mind the image of Statler and Waldorf, which is hardly anywhere that pejorative (and considerably more amusing). The choice of word was brought on by levity, and not out of any intent to insult; I am sorry if I've offended anyone by using it. — Coren (talk) 15:09, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
I did not take it as an insult, because "kibitzer" is a term which is usually used slightly tongue-in-cheek. The problem more generally I have with the situation being brought up by you now is that the conduct of Elen was considered, and as far as I am concerned, settled, by ArbCom during a term for which you sought to be a member, and the community told you no, as you were not re-elected in 2011. Coming back now and saying "by the way, there were some things ArbCom did when I was gone that I don't agree with and I'd like to redo" is somewhat problematical, as it was by the community's wish that you were not a part of the decision in December 2012. Of course, you may have campaigned on the platform that you would go and reconsider 2012 decisions in 2013, including with specificity the Elen situation, if you did you can give me a link and, if so, you will be heartily within your rights.--Wehwalt (talk) 15:30, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
Well, we could get into an interesting debate about ongoing committee responsibilities, but the simpler matter is simply that the matter was not settled by the end of the year – it had simply stalled for a number of reasons.

You are correct that I have not campaigned on such a platform – not counting the fact that it would have been extraordinarily inappropriate to do so during the election (the closest I've ever gotten to something like that was opine on the propriety of Jclemens's "not a Wikipedian" comment as an answer to a direct question) – I could not possibly claim to have enough information to pronounce myself on that incident at the time.

That said, advanced permission review is part of the normal scope of the sitting ArbCom, and there is nothing exceptional about the incoming committee making that evaluation as part of settling in (to wit what happened around FT2 in 2009). — Coren (talk) 17:46, 27 January 2013 (UTC)

Then let me suggest that it is a poor idea to establish precedents that can bite you in the ass.--Wehwalt (talk) 18:54, 27 January 2013 (UTC)

While I'm not sure exactly what brought on the above, it's reminding me forcibly about when I closed a discussion after having asked a single question, and was reverted for being WP:INVOLVED by an admin who had been an active participant in the discussion. I gave up my bit for a couple of months in disgust, but came back later. Hope to see you at full throttle again soon, Elen! --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 07:42, 27 January 2013 (UTC)

I am astonished anyone in this day and age thinks an email has any hope of being private. Reminds me of the woman in 1881 who was upset because the contents of her singing telegram became known to others! For at least the last century, electronic or post correspondence is the property of the recipient, hence the high auction prices for historic letters which go to the owner of the letter or telegram, not the sender's descendants. For someone to get upset about electronic mail shared by the recipient to the point of reams of commentary and redefining the English language, shows me that emotion has become involved because logic and reason are discarded unused. As a retired college professor with years of graduate student spat-solving, I read the entire foregoing text and find it obvious where the fault lays. I also introduce Sayre's law into the discussion with a reminder that the project is what is important here not "winning" or "scoring points." Yes, be bold, but don't forget the politeness. That said, let me add my voice to the chorus crying "Elen, please don't leave!" Us little people in the trenches need you. PS to anyone who wants to take a bite out of me for my opinion... you'll show your truest colors when you do, so have at. Ellin Beltz (talk) 18:45, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
So with this edit Coren states Elen is deceitful, a gossip, untrustworthy, a liar and unethical ... and adds a section header for "levity" because he's thinking about Muppets? NE Ent 15:02, 28 January 2013 (UTC)
Well, I did ask him to give his honest opinion. At least he didn't hold back. Elen of the Roads (talk) 15:54, 28 January 2013 (UTC)
"Liar and gossip" imply the other insults.
I had thought this year's ArbCom would a relative safe haven from the decadence of WP. What has WTT gotten himself into?
The best last all conviction, etc. Kiefer.Wolfowitz 12:22, 5 February 2013 (UTC)
Tell me about it... I swear I'm sprouting grey hairs... can't believe it's only just been a month... WormTT(talk) 12:42, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

Just another morlock stopping by to say "Don't let the bastards grind you down." So, uh, don't let the bastards grind you down. Life is short, the world is large, and almost no one gets what they deserve. But I like the pseudo-person that appears here as "you", and wish you well. - (talk) 12:04, 31 January 2013 (UTC)

List of The Singing Bee (Australian game show) episodes[edit]

I wonder if I must nominate this page for deletion. It consists of mere songs that were used in the show. There is nothing encyclopedic about this, as it may violate WP:NOTIINFO. --George Ho (talk) 02:41, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

Indeed. As Elen won't be very active, I nominated the list. You are welcome to post your vote there if you wish. Regards. — ΛΧΣ21 03:02, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 21 January 2013[edit]

Collis P. Huntington VS. the Anonymous Editor, round 30[edit]

Hello again... Collis Potter Huntington has been changed several times recently Collis Potter Huntington's History Page by a pair of anonymous users [24] & [25]. The edit summaries look quite educated, but if you look at the actual edits on the page, they're very ignorant. Any help you or other admins can give to this page, which for some reason seems to attract odd vandals (or perhaps just the same one over & over). Ellin Beltz (talk) 23:53, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

The same problem is also to be found at James Buchanan's edit history and Franklin Pierce's edit history. Ellin Beltz (talk) 23:56, 23 January 2013 (UTC)
(talk page stalker) comment - not sure why you mention here since their only contribution seems to be fixing Collis Potter Huntington. Agree that the other "editing" is a real problem though. :( (talk) 11:42, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
  • Materialscientist blocked the 67 IP for a month (sorry I wasn't quicker off the mark) - agree with 82.45 that the other IP was only trying to fix the mess. Don't know why poor Collis Potter Huntington seems to attract vandals. I can understand juvies vandalising Penis or Beyonce - they have one of the first category, and probably...well, you can guess the interaction with the second. But how would you even find Collis Potter Huntington if you didn't already know he existed. Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:24, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for a stop to the anonymous editing! @anon-TalkPageStalker... I mentioned both 71 & 67 because I couldn't figure out what was going on, and rather than make a bad situation worse, I pointed to both IPs and asked for help. @Elen... My guess is that C.P. was found on some kind of "Potter" search at some point and has been attractive to mess with ever since. The other page in constant vandalism state that I watch is Guy Fieri who is apparently, in his spare time from the Food Network, also the Antichrist. It gets changed, we change it back, it gets changed... I wish these people put as much effort into working on the project for real as they do on trying to mess it up! Ellin Beltz (talk) 18:18, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
That's hilarious! Although I gather he's in competition with Simon Cowell for the antichrist tag [26]. And did you know, Colonel Sanders discovered the elixir of life, and added it to the KFC recipe (I can't find the vandalism for that unfortunately - someone wrote a whole spoof article about how Harlan Sanders is still alive and eating KFC (if you can find the shop that sells the right version) will make you live forever, but I can't recall the exact title. Elen of the Roads (talk) 19:01, 27 January 2013 (UTC)

Muffins, English[edit]

Elen, please don't give up, 'cos you have friends ... and the English muffin article is still patiently awaiting your visit. Really. Politics is poo but editing is good. Best wishes (talk) 11:19, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

PS Yes I am not logged in but don't worry, no drama, no conspiracy, I'm just on a break ... not someone you know well or anyone interesting or important. Just would hate to see you stop editing here, that's all. Cheers (talk) 11:22, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
No worries. I agree, the best thing is to ditch the politics and get some editing in :) And don't worry about logging out here to avoid drama - it's only the ones who log out to leave insults that get bit by User:Darwinbish (usually) --Elen of the Roads (talk) 16:45, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
Love that song, BTW. Always been a fan of both of them, so put them together and boom! --Elen of the Roads (talk) 16:46, 26 January 2013 (UTC)
Thanks - yes, great song, great combination of artists. And I really wasn't logged out here to avoid drama, but merely because I was on a self-imposed break so actually couldn't log in at that time! :) Cheers (talk) 12:27, 27 January 2013 (UTC)[edit]

I begin to think that the user, (talk · contribs · WHOIS) may be Anthony Weights (talk · contribs). Look at Cheers (season 4) (edit | talk | history | protect | delete | links | watch | logs | views) What shall I do? --George Ho (talk) 16:27, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

No he's not. You can relax. used Wikipedia:Articles for Creation to create the article. Anthony Weights works at AFC approving new articles and moving them into article space. Check his user contributions - you can see him doing the same with lots of articles. Elen of the Roads (talk) 16:52, 26 January 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 28 January 2013[edit]

Checkuser question[edit]

Elen, I know you're not terribly active, but on the other hand, I probably know you better than other active checkusers, so I'll bug you first. Do I understand correctly that a CU can tell whether or not one account sent another account an email thru the WP interface? Not the contents, but the fact that the email was or was not sent. In a case where one user says another user sent them a harassing email, and the other user denies sending any emails at all, would a CU be willing to check this? Not asking for the check yet; still hoping the one not telling the truth comes clean without the check. But I'm inclined to block the liar indefinitely if he doesn't come clean, whichever one it turns out to be. --Floquenbeam (talk) 23:37, 3 February 2013 (UTC)

I don't think CheckUser can see the recipient of the emails. They can only see that the email was sent and the IP address from which it was sent.--Jasper Deng (talk) 23:40, 3 February 2013 (UTC)
Oh, well, rats. If that's the case, I guess CU could still conclusively disprove one of the claims, but not the other. --Floquenbeam (talk) 23:51, 3 February 2013 (UTC)
Actually, it would still work; the other user says they have not sent any emails thru the WP interface in over a month, so a check could be used to substantiate one side or the other's claim. --Floquenbeam (talk) 23:58, 3 February 2013 (UTC)
The checkuser tool shows if the user sent an email through the interface, but only shows who it was sent to as as a hash code. I suspect that somewhere there is a lookup table, but it's only available to a developer. However, if the user is insisting that they never sent email thru the interface, that can be demonstrated with the tool. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:06, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
If someone doesn't come clean, is this something you'd be willing to check? --Floquenbeam (talk) 00:08, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
Please, just go on with it now. This is getting really annoying, like a bug that won't stop flying by your ear and you can never hit it in time.  — Statυs (talk, contribs) 00:10, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
Well, if your user is alleging that they have received harrassing emails from User:Foo, they need to forward the emails, ideally with all the headers - it would then be possible to compare that fairly definitively with the return from the checkuser tool. Even without the full header, the tool could compare timestamps. I wouldn't be happy to do it without confirmation that the email exists. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:14, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
I've sent you an email, Elen (if you doubt it, you can use CU to verify! :) ) --Floquenbeam (talk) 00:20, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
I'll just leave you guys to it. Face-smile.svg  — Statυs (talk, contribs) 00:21, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
Resolved: With an indef block, no CU needed after all. The accusation against Status is false. Thanks for your time. --Floquenbeam (talk) 21:06, 4 February 2013 (UTC)
No worries. This guy sounds like a piece of work. Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:45, 4 February 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 04 February 2013[edit]

Your recent activity on the Castle topic[edit]

You deleted some sourcing that I did on this topic and you claimed that my sources were "poor"-a National database of paranormal research? Also you closed the topic to anyone but admin. for one week. Wow-I'm not impressed. Over-use of power and for a completely power-abuse reason. That is not what admin. status is for you know? (talk) 02:47, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

You are mistaken. I made no edits to the article, I just protected it as there was a content dispute resulting in multiple rapid changes. Please discuss any changes you want to make with other editors on the talk page - if there is consensus on what to put in the article, the protection can be removed. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 11:00, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
I note there's already a couple of edit requests up on the talkpage. Do you want to comment on their suitability, and maybe add an edit request of your own for others to discuss? --Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:21, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
Just as well it was protected in the state it's currently in. This material, which restored three times in the course of his edit-warring is a blatant copyright violation. See Talk:Foulksrath Castle#Copyright issue. Best, Voceditenore (talk) 17:04, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
Nice catch. Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:17, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

Subject: Elen of the Roads, Wikipedia administrator[edit]

Elen, I am happy to see that your edit count is gradually climbing again. Without getting into the merits of your recent Arbcom controversy, I must say that I have always known you to be a circumspect and conscientious administrator, and Wikipedia would be a poorer organization if you were to abruptly lay down your tools, vanish, or fade into semi-retirement. There is a place for you and role for you to fill, and I hope you continue to do so. Cheers. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 18:02, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

Thanks. As I said above, that's the odd thing. Without Coren emailing me to say that Arbcom were going to do whatever it is they haven't done yet, it might have been a while before I got back to editing, other things having sprung out of the woodwork to take up the time (well OK, not woodwork. Rather, I had set about compiling all the cuttings of recipes I'd acquired over the years).--Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:16, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Thanks to everyone else who has said kind things about me. I hope I can continue to be at least somewhat useful. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:16, 7 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Sounds like a new userbox is needed. "This editor is somewhat useful despite..." --Demiurge1000 (talk) 22:36, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

You've got mail![edit]

Hello, Elen of the Roads. Please check your email; you've got mail!
Message added 21:54, 7 February 2013 (UTC). It may take a few minutes from the time the email is sent for it to show up in your inbox. You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{You've got mail}} or {{ygm}} template.

ΛΧΣ21 21:54, 7 February 2013 (UTC)

Dry glue[edit]

So after the whole fiasco I was asked to go edit elsewhere. I looked at your profile and saw Dry glue. I noticed the first sentence is written in an odd way, and the revision history says you wrote it. So I figured your opinion was the best on the subject. It originally read

  • Dry glue is a method of adhesion based upon the naturally occurring adaptations of the feet of geckos, which allow them to climb sheer surfaces, and even glass walls.

I changed it to

  • Dry glue is a method of adhesion based upon the naturally occurring foot adaptations that allow geckos to climb sheer surfaces and even glass walls.

alternatively, you could even write the same sentence as

  • Dry glue is a method of adhesion based upon the naturally occurring adaptations that allow gecko feet to climb sheer surfaces and even glass walls.

It kind of becomes potatoe potato at that point. I personally think keeping the words foot and adaptation next to each other is a better idea, because the adhesive is specifically developed from the foot adaptations and not general gecko adaptations (such as a knee adaptation that assists in climbing.) Also, if we are being completely pedantic, the entire gecko climbs the wall, not just their feet. So my first sentence should be the better of the two. But between the last two, it's a horse a piece and not even worth debating.

First I questioned whether the sentence should use which or that. If you don't know the difference, it's pretty clearly explained here. I switched from which to that, to make the second half of the sentence a restrictive clause instead of a nonrestrictive clause. This was to reduce the chance of reading the sentence in a nonsensical way. Nonrestrictive clauses can be removed without changing the meaning of the sentence, restrictive clauses cannot. Removing the phrase "which allow them to climb sheer surfaces" drastically changes the meaning of the sentence. That is more appropriate than which. It makes the sentence more clear and easier to read (even in a subliminal way, few people would ever consciously notice.)

Then I removed the oxford comma after surfaces for the exact same reason which becomes that. With the comma "and even glass walls" could apply to the earlier clause, causing the reader to accidentally read the sentence as "Dry glue is a method of adhesion based upon the naturally occurring adaptations of geckos feet and even glass walls." By removing the oxford comma "and even glass walls" only applies to the phrase "climbing sheer surfaces". A native English speaker might be unlikely to get confused, but to others, the sentence can easily be read to mean that dry glue is based on the adhesion properties of glass walls. Glass is not an adhesive. Removing the comma makes the sentence more clear and less ambiguous. As a bonus, by removing the oxford comma and swapping which to that, it allows us to remove the first comma too. The entire sentence can be constructed with no commas. Yay!

Then I noticed "adaptations of the feet of geckos which allow them to." 10 word, 3 prepositions, 3 nouns, 2 pronouns, 1 article, and 1 verb. It creates all sorts of odd possible interpretations. Does "them" refer to the geckos feet or adaptations themselves? Is there a difference? Sort of. I tried to reconstruct the phrase to remove any ambiguous interpretations. Thus, "adaptations of the feet of geckos that allow them to" became "foot adaptations that allow geckos to". The change removes one of two pronouns and two of three prepositions completely. In my opinion, the changes create a sentence with only one interpretation. The phrase now has 3 nouns, 1 pronoun, 1 verb, and 1 preposition, and it definitively makes sense. Much better, right?

Since you are the person who initially wrote the sentence, I defer judgement to you. Do you think, after hearing why I changed the sentence, it is more, or less, clear? I really didn't want to stick around, but enough people politely said to give it a try. I figured I would listen to the experts for once. I made a small edit on an unrelated page. The editor I had a conflict with is now following me around and reverted the changes I made, on completely unrelated pages. The only reason I even found the page was because of your userpage. I don't like having every decision I make undermined and undone, especially as some part of an ill conceived revenge plan. If this keeps happening, there is no way I can keep contributing. Who in their right mind has enough time to continually justify even the most mundane actions? There is no question in my mind the revert occurred as a prejudice against me, because in my eyes the change is absolutely an improvement. Is his second guessing of everything I do just a way to derive pleasure from torturing me? Is creating a new account to escape stalking the best course of action? I can't even reintroduce my improvements without starting an edit war. No dialogue between us has been very constructive. Both of us are at fault for that one. Clearly he didn't put as much thought into the sentence as I did because ALL my changes were reverted, sans two links he put back. At the very least the oxford comma should be removed, and which changed to that. But, my removal of the other comma, a pronoun and prepositions, is what I see as an obvious improvement. "Of the feet of geckos which" has 2 prepositions and a pronoun in six words and a third preposition three words later. It has 2 pronouns in three words (which allow them.) Doing those kinds of things make sentences hard to read. It causes the reader to have to go back and read the sentence a second time. Back when I was a kid we were taught to cut the clutter. Reduce sentences to their basic elements. I will admit, maybe I overlinked one word, feet. That seems like a judgement call. If we are talking about the evolution of gecko feet, I would think a link to feet is handy. I still think I was right to link it, but if someone else didn't, I would have no problem with the link being reverted. I even put what I thought were really good explanations in the comment box describing why I made the changes. Is this guy going to follow me around wikipedia and revert everything I do. Is participating anywhere at all futile? Why bother? My entire reason for treating this as a cup half empty situation was because no matter how small of a chance you make, it gets reverted and you have to write a paragraph justifying your thoughts. And when you do justify your thoughts, they fall on deaf ears because people prefer Newspeak to actual communication. We are becoming a place where anything more than a sentence or two is glossed over and ignored. I am more than glad to fix oddly constructed sentences here and there, but I don't want to constantly justify every little comma and pronoun change. I can't believe I just wrote this much about a 29 word sentence. Normally I would put this on the talk page, but a) you wrote the sentence, asking for your thoughts directly is best b) Rob self admittedly wont read walls of text anyway and c) it's more of an issue with the aforementioned user than the constituent construction itself. If you think any of my improvements are justified would you look into reinstating some or all of them? Or at least us my observations to construct a more coherent sentence? This is way above me caring about gecko feet. I just want to be left alone to edit in peace. (If you can't tell, my stream of consciousness probably violates all the editing tips I suggest. You can't win them all.) Xkcdreader (talk) 14:09, 8 February 2013 (UTC)

  • You ever come across a guy called Victor Borge? He did a wonderful sketch which consisted of repeating the words "Ethel called. She has got the tickets to John's concert on Saturday" with the emphasis on a different word each time, followed by an amusing gloss on what the speaker actually meant. For example, Ethel called.... was glossed with "Ethel called. Why did Ethel call. Does my son John not want to speak to his mother any more" And Ethel called .... was glossed with "Ethel called. She called. On the telephone. You'd think she could spare the time to come talk to her mother in person, but no." And so on.
  • Anyway, I saw your original edit, and I thought it was a great improvement (although I do think Ent's is better now I see it). I didn't see the other chap's revert - from his edit summary, I think he thought the worst of you, then revised his opinion when he saw what you've posted here. I do think he will be less suspicious in future. You're certainly welcome to improve the English in any article I've edited. I hope you found the talkpage discussion which followed you posting here more in line with the ideal as well.Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:11, 8 February 2013 (UTC)
  • You lost me with the sketch. What does glossed me? "victor børge ethel" brings me nothing useful on google? To change the subject a little.. I typed some thoughts to you earlier in the day, and figured they might register with you specifically. Feel free to not read any of it............... I found your User:Elen_of_the_Roads/On_editing_in_a_collaborative_project essay enlightening. You are a very smart person. A lot of problems do come from cultural differences and interpreting other peoples comments through our own internal lenses. What one person intends as genuine can be perceived as snarky and disingenuous by the other party. When the whole situation began I though my minor contribution should have been the least controversial thing since sliced bread. The context of the situation I had entered, failed to register. I now see everyone was already on edge and probably pissed off about the comic. They didn't want the attention. I didn't understand why I was being met with such forceful rejection. Being rejected just made me try harder and harder until it snowballed into mania. I'm not saying I'm not to blame. I am. I kept getting pushed ever so slowly towards the edge. I wanted to keep screaming "it's him not me" repeatedly, but did not, knowing full well it would make the situation worse. In the resulting chaos I mistakenly vilified Scjessey. That was bad because it gave me an enemy I didn't need. He was blocking everything I was proposing, but he had legitimate concerns. He even called me out on it, saying I was being stupid for painting him as the bad guy, and I didn't listen. As the brick wall I was fighting got stronger and more adamant I started punching harder. I was being misrepresented on the talk page. I was being misrepresented in the incident report. (Again, perspective.) I didn't understand the incident report wasn't a court and tried to defend my self. Baaad idea. That didn't help. I don't get how they expect new people to understand what all these similarly named things are. I got blocked and tried to cool down, but I kept getting pushed. When an adult sits around harassing a kid over and over until the kid commits suicide, the adult can get charged for homicide. But in American Football, it is always the person reciprocating who gets a flag thrown. It's the punch in retaliation that gets you in trouble. Wikipedia is more like football than murder. It's the rebuttal that gets you in trouble. What ticked me off to no end is how I end up being the one indefinitely banned from discussing Star Trek, but no one else involved. Yea, I was increasingly argumentative. That didn't mean that everything I said needed to be addressed. The smart thing to do would have been ignore me. The elders should have known better and be held to a higher standard. In fact, an admin even told him to "stop rising to it." The fact that established editors get the benefit of the doubt, and newbies get the doubt is what makes this place inaccessible to a fresher generation of users. (Further complicating the issue is the inability to quickly denote an authority figure. SarekOfVulcan warned me and I completely ignored him because I had no idea who he was or that he was an admin.) It seems like any enforcement of civility and disruption only addresses the problem itself, and not its root causes. It's like treating AIDS with painkillers instead of antiretroviral drugs. As I keep reading User:Elen_of_the_Roads/On_editing_in_a_collaborative_project, it sounds like your worldviews match up with mine. I just got to the sentence that reads "To my mind, and this is a personal opinion, bullying and browbeating an editor away from a topic is the issue we ought to be dealing with. Good editors will leave a war zone - how often have we heard it said 'I stopped editing there because of X's attitude.' " This is exactly why Wikipedia loses otherwise willing participants. "Reverting every edit in article space, rubbishing or ignored everything someone says, ignored any consensus that forms around them, jumping on any and everything (however little) said against their edit by someone else, regardless of the overall opinion of other editors, is as damaging to the project as the type of edit that will get you a civility block, but it is much harder to get it dealt with." I was guilty of a lot of that too. Now, I just keep coming back to "The principle Ignorantia juris non excusat (Latin for: "ignorance of the law does not excuse") is incompatible with the guidelines of "do not bite" and "assume good faith"." I was the one who didn't know better. I want to lash out and proclaim "it's not fair" but no one was interested in listening anymore. I wish your essay had been published somewhere more visible before I got involved in this mess. I also wish the inclusion of slightly controversial material, thereby allowing a wide audience of non-wikipedia-regulars to weigh its worth, was the status quo instead of gridlock. Everything about the process seems so backwards. By playing it safe, and doing nothing, everybody loses and emotions stay tense. It creates a destructive, not productive, work environment. The one thing I disagree with in your essay is " Having said that, if I ask someone to modify an aggressive approach, I expect them to stop, and I think one key thing in improving the editing atmosphere would be the approach to enforcement." I think empathy instead of authority is the best way to calm people down. Telling a person who is caught up in the heat of the moment to chill (or worse, take a chill pill) almost always makes things worse. When you get told to chill out, what does it make you want to do? Xkcdreader (talk) 01:44, 9 February 2013 (UTC)
No, I can't find a video of the sketch either. Perhaps I'm remembering the names wrong or something. I only mentioned it because it rather reminded me of him, the way you (and others) were deconstructing to death this sentence about gecko feet. I'm glad you found my essay helpful. I'm convinced that a lot of disputes are down to mismatched expectations of what should happen, rather than one of the participants being Dr. Evil. Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:29, 10 February 2013 (UTC)
Stigmergic Accumulation - the process of building upon existing work bit by bit. I learned that phrase from the Wikipedia Signpost: What if the Wikipedia "revolution" was actually a reversion? section on the 4th. I still content "browbeating an editor away from a topic is the issue" coupled with a fresh bloods eager desire not to be subdued by the loudest objectors, but that point is moot. My drive to succeed was classic cobra effect. The Robust Public Debate Principle (which feeds back into the Marketplace of Ideas) of free speech champion Justice William Brennan (who also happened to wrote the Majority for the landmark New York Times Co. v. Sullivan case) applies -- The robust debate principle recognizes that sometimes in a crowd of speakers it is necessary to turn down the volume of certain loud and clamorous speakers in order to give others a chance to speak. Even the most influential Justice of the 20th century, a defender of free speech, understood that sometime free speech means restricting speech. Did you know moot means nearly the opposite of moot? How could you possibly know which one I mean? The "issue that is open for debate" vs "the issue that has been rendered irrelevant." Xkcdreader (talk) 17:15, 10 February 2013 (UTC)
  • xkcd, it doesn't matter whether I'm an "authority figure" or not. When someone warns you that your editing is becoming disruptive, that's the time to sit back and say "ok, what am I doing, and what have the results of this kind of editing been in the past?". --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 17:34, 10 February 2013 (UTC)
ok. You have to understand that when someone who opposes my contribution asks me to stop, it sounds remarkably like someone trying to get me to give up so they win. It's a matter of perspective. The tone you were using with me was not exactly welcoming. "What part of WP:SUBJECT isn't sinking in here? --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 17:03, 2 February 2013 (UTC)" "And that last major addition of yours, clearly against consensus, crossed the line. If you continue to waste other editors' time on this subject, I will be requesting a block on the administrators' noticeboard. Switch topics for a while, edit some other articles (preferably not Trek-related), and maybe come back to the topic later. Much later. --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 14:41, 5 February 2013 (UTC)" From my perspective you were actively trying to prevent my case from being heard. The "sinking in" and "much much later" quips were kind of mean. Why would YOU take advice from someone who is insulting and belittling you? The feedback I gathered after every draft shaped the proposal. I found it insulting that you would call collaborative editing a waste of time. Xkcdreader (talk) 17:52, 10 February 2013 (UTC)
I can see both sides here. Yes, I agree that the way things were put to you were more likely to make you mad than to make you understand. But at the same time, the way you kept on going at it was more likely to make everyone else mad than to persuade them to your point of view. In those situations, a sanction of some kind for the person who has no or less Wikipedia policy in their arguments is always a potential outcome, so there is an extent to which the other parties were intending a generic warning that persistence will likely cause the hammer to fall, rather than a direct threat that they wanted to silence you. So the lesson for someone like Sarek might be to try other phrasing, to see if that has a better uptake. And the lesson for you might be that if a lot of people are giving you the same message, it might be worth trying to unpick their beef with them, rather than ploughing on regardless. Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:21, 11 February 2013 (UTC)
What does this sentence mean? "A sanction of some kind for the person who has no or less Wikipedia policy in their arguments is always a potential outcome." I got sanctioned for talking too much. Xkcdreader (talk) 18:26, 11 February 2013 (UTC)
Precisely - talking too much with no wikipedia policy in your arguments, or less wikipedia policy than your opponents in your arguments is frequently seen as "tendentious editing" and tends to get you a sanction. Whereas determinedly resisting attempts to insert a WP:BLP violation, or a copyright violation, where you have policy clearly on your site, gets you plaudits. Elen of the Roads (talk) 18:32, 11 February 2013 (UTC)
Oh, I still maintain they were incorrectly applying policies with ulterior motives in play. Most of my comments addressed policy criticisms head on. Pfhorrest shared a similar sentiment and said "the arguments being provided against it look like they are clamoring for anything to throw just to shut down the matter of title-related issues here." Betty Logan said to open an RFC to see if their argument held water. Then I confused the Incident Report for a court and aired my opinions of Rob, thus earning a ban. So now I can't file an RFC and we will never know who was right. I'm still confident a RFC would have vindicated me. The conversation reduced itself to Nuh uh. Uh huh. I think to even call it a conversation is a stretch. I could show you the exact sentence that was causing all the fuss, and maybe you could explain to me if I have a warped interpretation of WP:SUBJECT. Xkcdreader (talk) 23:05, 11 February 2013 (UTC)


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Hello, Elen of the Roads. You have new messages at Cenedlaetholwr Cymreig's talk page.
You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{Talkback}} or {{Tb}} template.

--Free Wales Now! what did I screw up?  15:51, 10 February 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 11 February 2013[edit]

Owning up....[edit]

Hi Elen, You were right the first time, HackneyHound was an account I created many moons ago. And yes it was operated on a vodafone network. Gravyring was not a sock of mine but my housemate, who I roped in, not sure if thats meat puppetry as we shared a bathroom at the time. So all of the sock cases against Hackneyhound are all different users, potentially innocent or just those using their phone or 3g tablet to avoid a block as I did. But Hackneyhound, I have not used since blocking so any of those blocked related to my account should be revised maybe.Factocop (talk) 11:43, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

And we are supposed to believe you, say so? "I have never ever used another account, ever.", - and again - 7 month after (as you now say) creating Hackneyhound? RashersTierney (talk) 13:33, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Just so were clear, Rashers is struggling with the time between the edits. First 2 Factocop edits are 17months before Hackneyhound creation, not 7 months after as Rashers has stated. Trying to twist facts....Factocop (talk) 15:45, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Factocop is struggling with the English language. Your brazen denials of having used other accounts came 7 months after you say you registered Hackneyhound. One more for the pot. RashersTierney (talk) 16:28, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Rashers, I'm confused, you have now presented 3 diffs from 2010. Hackneyhound was created in 2012. What are you on about?Factocop (talk) 16:35, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
My mistake. I guess I was confused by the fact that you were blocked for socking, then unblocked for not socking and now you confess to socking, but it's somehow OK. RashersTierney (talk) 16:49, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
I just didnt appreciate you twisting facts. I've explained a ton of times but Factocop was indef. blocked initially I think for being CU confirmed as The Maiden City. Factocop was my first account. When I received the indef. block I felt an injustice and starting socking, only because I should never have been blocked in the first place. as a sock I continued in the same vain as before, I was quickly found out and was barely able to edit with constantly being getting blocked. I was then able to present evidence to ShellKinney that Factocop was my 1st account and that TMC was not me. So I was unblocked, but then blocked for close to 2 years because I had edited/socked in the interim. Scoking doesnt pay as no one takes you seriously. At least now as single user Factocop I can edit again, but I was getting fed up with every user in troubles related pages being linked to me just because we had a shared pov, which is not uncommon in this topic on both sides. And I'm pretty sure I was not the only user socking as so many accounts in the troubles topics seem to exist purely to support each others edits. Factocop (talk) 16:59, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Factocop account was my first account. Just being honest here, didnt have to be, as it was no one has mentioned me in relation to HackneyHound in a long time. Just thought given the number of people who have been accused of being my old hackneyhound account, didnt think it was fair to them, thats all. My hackneyhound account seems to be the go to account when people are editing at any british isles/troubles related pages.Factocop (talk) 14:25, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Well it clears up one mystery - a lot of people thought Hackneyhound was you. But I'm not inclined to think that there are legions of editors on that Vodaphone range, all with your exact pov and way of expressing it. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 14:39, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm not sure how the vodafone ip address operates over a 3g network but I just assumed that carnival_fred(of the top of my head) was maybe one of them as he was pretty strongly viewed. All I can do is confirm that I was the only HackneyHound account and there is no other account associated with. Perhaps If you want I should email arbcom with my previous accounts if you wish....or post here, though I can't remember all my accounts so may need help with that.Factocop (talk) 14:55, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
To qoute you above, with emphisis bud, "All I can do is confirm that I was the only HackneyHound" and then contradict it with "If you want I should email arbcom with my previous accounts". So which version is it? Only Factocop and HackneyHound? Or are there previous? Or maybe sleepers? Which ever way, one of the terms of your unblock was edit only while logged into Factocop, no IP editing and no socking, as you have admitted to being HackneyHound and there is a clear checkuser for a sock of his, I would say that its not looking good at the moment. Murry1975 (talk) 15:09, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Factocop was my first account! So there were no previous accounts before that. I created hackneyhound account while factocop was blocked. I'm just saying all of the account linked to HackneyHound are not me. Aside from this Murry, I am here to discuss with Elen. I havent broken any of my terms of unblock, if I had, I would not be owning up to this now. Just tired of seeing old blocked accounts being linked to every anon ip. without any real proof for the most part.Factocop (talk) 15:25, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Hmmmmm.... so here's a simple question. Did you ever have a run-in with me on any British Isles related stuff? And if so, what account? --HighKing (talk) 15:45, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
So lets have your other accounts. RashersTierney (talk) 15:47, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

@HK, don't think so. My main focus was troubles esque such as Londonderry, City of Derry Airport, Giants Causeway, Carlingford Lough etc.

I have nothing to gain from this and I have not breached my sanctions, just so were clear Other accounts not in timely order: HackneyHound Afterlife10 NI4Life Homebirdni CodSa DameEdnaUK AttackZack (I'm a saved by the bell fan) Pilgrimsquest

...a few more but can't remember off top of my head.Factocop (talk) 15:58, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

Take your time. It's important, if we are to get to the bottom of this. RashersTierney (talk) 16:59, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

Thats all I can remember, but feel free to point out any...Factocop (talk) 17:08, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

Afterlife10? Murry1975 (talk) 16:04, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
User:LevenBoy? --HighKing (talk) 18:42, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
  • I've looked at a lot of the history, perhaps CU did mess up with the original sock, perhaps it didn't. Regardless, there's never an excuse to start a socking spree, which you've admitted to here. Indef block for socking anyone? Lukeno94 (talk) 19:25, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
    • No. But we need to know the other accounts, all of them. Enough time has been wasted at SPIs because Factocop didn't 'fess up before. How his block was lifted without 'full disclosure', I've no idea. RashersTierney (talk) 19:59, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

@highking, no not levenboy. Don't think we've collaborated on anything either. @Luke, youre late to the party. I already served 2 yrs for socking and was allowed to edit under sanctions.Factocop (talk) 19:32, 13 February 2013 (UTC)

Well no, you didn't. You socked at least as recently as a year ago, by your own admission. RashersTierney (talk) 21:04, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
'well no, you didnt' what? I have been open about my past accounts when I didnt have to be. And with the law of averages, I'm pretty sure you Rashers have committed a sin or two. Maybe next time you disagree with a user, don't get involved in their SPI case, just to discredit their argument or remove them altogether. You recently leapt to the defence of HK at ANI. Some would say that is suspicious....anyway this isnt about you. I've admitted all my accounts. thats more than enough.Factocop (talk) 23:21, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
Well no you haven't been entirely honest. If your implication is that I have also used sock puppets, then you are entirely wrong. Not everyone with an opinion (on whatever) feels the need. RashersTierney (talk) 23:50, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
if you say so. i think we are done.Factocop (talk) 23:54, 13 February 2013 (UTC)
No, you still have to disclose all your past accounts. Your failure to do so up till now has screwed up several SPIs. Make good or don't expect a warm community embrace. RashersTierney (talk) 00:11, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
I have disclosed all my past accounts.Factocop (talk) 00:20, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Are you are absolutely certain...RashersTierney (talk) 00:30, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
as sure as i can be, though the important thing is that i only have one account now. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Factocop (talkcontribs) 00:33, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
And that's "owning up"? Your problem, you fix it! RashersTierney (talk) 00:46, 14 February 2013 (UTC)

People, take some advice from an old Wikipedian - NEVER trust a sock-master & keep all of his suspected socks blocked. GoodDay (talk) 03:30, 14 February 2013 (UTC)

This stuff about the housemate being "roped in" with the shared bathroom - seriously? Hackneyhound completely denied being even linked to Gravyring at all,[27] and now Factocop comes in and clears the air? Lies beget more lies - do not trust those who lie. Y'all are getting jerked around. Doc talk 07:49, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Hence my call for an indef. Lukeno94 (talk) 09:41, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Rasher's diff above seals it for me.[28] Factocop is a proven sockmaster - and a proven liar. How they are still here is amazing. I don't trust this user at all, or his claims about who he is or is not. Ridiculous. Doc talk 09:50, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
I have explained that the diffs were a mistake on my part. Just don't want opinion swayed on that point alone. That is not to say that all is fine and dandy and Factocop doesn't have some serious confidence building to do. The onus is on him. RashersTierney (talk) 10:01, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Well I think I have certainly learned not to edit war, but I do now tend to discuss the hell out of things. But I say this, any user who is falsely accused of socking and then is indef blocked would more than likely sock aswell. Anyone who says they wouldnt is a liar. Trust me. Nothing more frustrating than being blocked for an offence you didnt commit. Socking isnt right but at the time I did know the appeal system or another way to continue editing other than socking. I was released from my block by arbcom, despite my socking history so I don't see why I should be blocked again as I am still editing under sanctions and for the most part sticking to them to the best I can. But I can imagine alot of the accounts that were originally blocked for being linked to hackneyhound in the first spi have probably socked because they have been falsely accused.Factocop (talk) 10:13, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
By your own admission above you edited as Afterlife10. People should ponder User talk:Afterlife10 to get a flavour of how your level of trust on the project is to be judged. How can you expect anything you say to be taken at face value? RashersTierney (talk) 11:47, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
At this point I can't say anymore. As afterlife10 I was blocked for socking as Factocop. True. All you have shown is that when I was Afterlife I tried everything I could do continue editing. You would do the same. Though some of my comments then seemed to link HighKing and NorthernCounties. I probably raised an SPI but they were never looked into as I was subsequently blocked for being a sock, alas. Look, you don't have to trust me if you don't want to, and given your edit history we obviously have a different POV so you are never likely to trust me or my motives anyway.Factocop (talk) 12:11, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
I don't distrust you because of your POV. I distrust you because your idea of 'truth' is whatever seems convenient to you at a given time. RashersTierney (talk) 12:16, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
What were all the CU results for the confirmed Hackneyhound socks based on? Dynamic Vodaphone IPs? Doc talk 10:23, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Yes, same Vodaphone range, apparently same or similar device (but then it probably would be as it's a mobile range). Those IPs rotate every 24hrs or so. That and the marked similarities in editing. Occams Razor suggests that if it was Factocop the first time, it's Factocop all the other times. CU could never prove it, because Factocop does most of his editing apparently while at work (or apparently on a work VPN). Elen of the Roads (talk) 12:33, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
  • If I got an indef block I felt was completely incorrect, I would first coherently and accurately (as well as I could) state my case, then if that didn't work, probably get very annoyed and storm off. I would not, however, create a whole truckload of socks to carry on editing. That's not a smart idea at all. I also wouldn't constantly tell different stories at different times - you seem to be making several different claims here, and elsewhere (pages and time wise). Lukeno94 (talk) 20:14, 14 February 2013 (UTC)
Well Luke, He who has never sinned may cast the first stone...given your interest here, I can only assume that your behaviour and contrubution on wikipedia must be flawless. Yesterday you made 23 edits spread across the entire day. If you were ever blocked, I would guess that you would struggle to kick the habit that is wikipedia. To say you would simply walk away from wikipedia is pure bu((ock$. Wise up!Factocop (talk) 11:16, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Considering I'm sensible enough NOT to break any rules, then it wouldn't be an issue. I take a very dim view of sockpuppetry, hence my "interest here". 1 sock, OK, but as many as you've had? Also, I made 23 edits yesterday, yes - but about 10 to one article (at least) Lukeno94 (talk) 12:00, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm just saying its a hard habit to kick, and I just don't think you would stop editing if blocked. Thats all I say on the matter.Factocop (talk) 12:21, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
So you will be socking again the next time you're blocked? You appear to be saying socking is 'wrong' but it is 'reasonable', if you think the block is wrong. RashersTierney (talk) 12:53, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
No, because I don't intend on getting blocked again, but if I did get blocked, I am far more aware of the appeals process.I'm done now. Can't say anything more.Factocop (talk) 17:20, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
I am just curious why you are doing it now. As I have interacted with your socks and various IP's over the last year, and since your unblock you, I am curious why now? AGF and all that, but I am still curious. Why would someone who has socked extensively (and heavily denied it) and been blocked appeal to Arbcom, get back on here and then confess? Murry1975 (talk) 17:51, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm more concerned with the shit stirring back at Talk:Derry, labelling everyone as "Nationalists", and then the serial reverting [29] [30] [31] [32] [33] [34] [35] [36] [37] of my edits which were made in line with IMOS. As he well knows. This is exactly the behaviour that got him banned in the first place, resulting in his sock abuse. This was followed by a weak canvassing attempt to ask at another users page if the original edits were OK (of course, asked after he'd already reverted 9 articles). Based on this behaviour and his history, I see no reason why the community believes he might be a net asset to the project. --HighKing (talk) 19:14, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
@HighKing, those edits seem more in line with the IP range you have qouted at the SPI than other edits he has made recently. Again another curious piece of this puzzle. Murry1975 (talk) 19:27, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
Seriously Murry, any fool can read the ANI where Highking was recently accused by sock IP of removing 'British Isles' term. I checked Highkings edits, using the 'user contribution' tool and found that this does seem to be true. Highking is going page to page applying his version of IMOS. Here are 8 edits alone where he has replaced Republic of Ireland with Ireland despite [Northern Ireland]] being used in the body of the text...[38],

[39], [40], [41], [42], [43], [44], [45].Factocop (talk) 10:13, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

I have to agree, especially given that Factocop (above) says he has never had a run in with me previously, and suddenly he's stalking my edits like that Voda IP editor - which we already know he also uses.... --HighKing (talk) 19:41, 15 February 2013 (UTC)
Like I said, I am only using one account - Factocop so stop throwing socking slurs at me.10:13, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
Elen, can you look at this new issue. Rashers and Highking seem to be in cahoots [46], this edit goes against IMOS. How is it that in an article where Northern Ireland is mention 21 times, is it correct to use Ireland. Complete joke.Factocop (talk) 10:19, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
I gave my explanation at the IMOS TP, which has been removed without explanation by Factocop. Sysop attention is long overdue here. RashersTierney (talk) 10:39, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
I removed your post as I don't think it had any relation to the content of WP:IMOS. so it was me who 'misinterpreted' IMOS?! ok gotcha. Thanks Rashers, you really are a bastion of wikipedia. So just so were clear, When NI is mentioned 21 times in a body of text, it is IMOS to use Ireland?okkie dokkie mr boss man, sir.Factocop (talk) 11:06, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Can't Factocop just be indeffed already? They're lying about not socking, they're violating several other rules, and just generally showing a WP:NOTHERE type of attitude. Lukeno94 (talk) 13:01, 16 February 2013 (UTC)
lying about not socking? have you read this thread at all? violating several other rules? which ones?Factocop (talk) 11:54, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Is User:DeFacto you? It would be a remarkable coincidence for two prolific sockpuppeters to be unrelated with such similar names and Vodafone IPs that have been named in both Hackneyhound and DeFacto SPIs... and I don't believe in coincidences. I know you've been pulled up for different issues, but DeFacto's edits have also centered around MOS and British things, which seems oddly familiar. Lukeno94 (talk) 11:38, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
def. not me. I have listed all of my past accounts already. Factocop (talk) 11:54, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
Once a sock-master, always a sockmaster. You'll never be trusted by the community again. GoodDay (talk) 20:52, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia can't really be considered a community with so much POV pushing. really?............and again all of the accounts listed above are ALL the accounts I have held EVER. So Highking, please refrain from linking me to further accounts as you have here [47]. The witch hunt is over.Factocop (talk) 23:31, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
    • It certainly is over. After lengthy consideration and some further checking, I have indefblocked Factocop on the simple basis that Hackneyhound is still socking, and he has admitted to being Hackneyhound. He also seems to be madly reverting, which I'm sure is in breach of his unblock conditions also. Elen of the Roads (talk) 00:27, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
      • Well done Elen, wish I hadn't been goaded into wasting time on exchanges with this individual. Brocach (talk) 00:40, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
  • I'm convinced DeFacto is also Factocop, being disruptive in similar but slightly different areas, but there's no real evidence I have to prove this, other than cynicism and a gut feeling, so there's not much I can do about it. Lukeno94 (talk) 15:08, 18 February 2013 (UTC)
Whether they are or not, this is exactly the harm that socking causes to the project; it creates an atmosphere of distrust which undermines collaboration. Ellen is to be commended for patience and decisiveness on this long-term problem. RashersTierney (talk) 21:32, 18 February 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 18 February 2013[edit]

Possible sockpuppetry of Bull-Doser[edit]

It appears that Bull-Doser has created today a new account that inserted the same content that got him blocked in October. [48].

Right now, I'm about to leave the house out and don't have time to fill SPI. I'll deal with that later. But in the mean time, you can just have a quick look at it even if you decide to not take actions. Bye. Farine (talk) 20:55, 20 February 2013 (UTC)

Give him another couple of edits. This guy seems more able to string two sentences together, and is talking about a change in early 2013 whereas Bull-Doser was making the change back in June 2012. Do you want to try just asking him if he has a source for that, and seeing how he answers? --Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:29, 20 February 2013 (UTC)
whereas Bull-Doser was making the change back in June 2012. You mean in October 2012. To be honest, I already know it is Bull-Doser just by the way he writes coupled with the timing this account was created (right after a community ban proposal and some concern from Bull-Doser on his talkpage regarding this). But sure, I'll give him more edits. Thanks. Farine (talk) 06:17, 21 February 2013 (UTC)
Nah, I've found edits in June changing the station output to Hot Adult Rock (or whatever). Guy is nothing if not persistent. I have restored an earlier version and left a note - let's see what he does. Also, let me know if any other favourite topics suddenly pop up an editor from nowhere. Elen of the Roads (talk) 13:21, 21 February 2013 (UTC)
I just noticed that Scotmail marked its biggest contribution as a minor edit. [49] Bull-Doser is the only user I know that randomly marks as minor edits that aren't even minor.[50]. It seems that Bull-Doser has taken a break from the Wikimedia Foundation because neither the Scotmail acount here nor his Bull-Doser account on Commons have been used in recent days. I agree with you that there's no neccessity to take actions against Scotmail if he doesn't make more edits than those 3 edits, although this situation could always be brought to the attention of the new reviewing administrator should Bull-Doser decide to make a new unblock request. Farine (talk) 02:11, 25 February 2013 (UTC)
Well, I felt the lack of response was somewhat telling, so I ran a usercheck. The tool hasn't 100% nailed it, but it's pretty close. I'm happy to block Scotmail as a sock of Bull-Doser, and I'll make a note on Bull-Doser's SPI record.

Who killed Aaron Schwartz (and why)?[edit]

At Talk:Aaron Schwartz (Canadian actor):

1 Odd
“Check out this diff. I wonder when the article for this Aaron Schwartz was deleted, and why? David in DC (talk) 22:45, 21 February 2013 (UTC)”

Is there a way to find out? --Dervorguilla (talk) 04:41, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

Very odd. I cannot find a trace of a deleted article with that name. I can only think that your IP created a redlink in that edit. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 21:56, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

Proof positive[edit]

This should prove that GabeMc is getting harrassed. Will this give him full rights to rid WP of all content dispute editors against him forever?. I am providing the means for him to accompish this, right here.

You are a bitch but we still love you!

BTW: When that POS WER section of domineering crap learns that banning everybody will stop editors from quitting they will have learnt something. Dennis should know better. Is running WP into the ground by design or happenstance? Most of its members have the attitude.

Have a good one!! (talk) 22:22, 26 February 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Editor review/George Ho[edit]

I created a request of editor review on me. Just to let you know. --George Ho (talk) 23:13, 26 February 2013 (UTC)

Did you get it?[edit]

I sent you an e-mail last week ... did you ever get it? (✉→BWilkins←✎) 00:28, 27 February 2013 (UTC)

Yes, and I thought I replied as well...let me go look. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:47, 28 February 2013 (UTC) <----sent you a reply on same day. Have re-sent it. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:53, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
Odd ... still not coming through. Are you in my spam filter? LOL Ah, I found out why - that one, rare word was one that I added to my spam filter - could you re-send once more, as I have removed it (sorry!) (✉→BWilkins←✎) 22:01, 1 March 2013 (UTC)

Blocked proxy - or is it?[edit]

Hi Elen, just a quick heads-up to let you know that I've listed IP at WP:OPP, since they're contesting the proxyblock you actioned in November. Cheers, Yunshui  08:06, 27 February 2013 (UTC)

And the result is... ask Elen. So I'm back here again; it seems that the IP doesn't show up as a proxy to Sailsbystars, but since the block is a bit unorthodox, he suggests I double-check with you for extenuating circumstances. Could you drop me a line when you've got a minute and let me know if there's any non-obvious reason for keeping the block in place? Cheers, Yunshui  08:31, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
I do know why I blocked it - IP was used by one of the MMA sockers (see Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/BStudent0) and 245.6 must have shown up somewhere. I cannot recall why I thought it was a proxy though, it looks more like someone editing on the company dime. As long as your editor doesn't want to edit MMA articles, it should be OK to unblock. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:42, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
Cool; I'll take that on board. I think an unblock is reasonable at this point, but I'll add a caveat about the MMA thing. Yunshui  22:54, 28 February 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 25 February 2013[edit]

WikiCup 2013 February newsletter[edit]

Round 1 is now over. The top 64 scorers have progressed to round 2, where they have been randomly split into eight pools of eight. At the end of April, the top two from each pool, as well as the 16 highest scorers from those remaining, will progress to round 3. Commiserations to those eliminated; if you're interested in still being involved in the WikiCup, able and willing reviewers will always be needed, and if you're interested in getting involved with other collaborative projects, take a look at the WikiWomen's Month discussed below.

Round 1 saw 21 competitors with over 100 points, which is fantastic; that suggests that this year's competition is going to be highly competative. Our lower scores indicate this, too: A score of 19 was required to reach round 2, which was significantly higher than the 11 points required in 2012 and 8 points required in 2011. The score needed to reach round 3 will be higher, and may depend on pool groupings. In 2011, 41 points secured a round 3 place, while in 2012, 65 was needed. Our top three scorers in round 1 were:

  1. Colorado Sturmvogel_66 (submissions), primarily for an array of warship GAs.
  2. London Miyagawa (submissions), primarily for an array of did you knows and good articles, some of which were awarded bonus points.
  3. New South Wales Casliber (submissions), due in no small part to Canis Minor, a featured article awarded a total of 340 points. A joint submission with Alaska Keilana (submissions), this is the highest scoring single article yet submitted in this year's competition.

Other contributors of note include:

Featured topics have still played no part in this year's competition, but once again, a curious contribution has been offered by British Empire The C of E (submissions): did you know that there is a Shit Brook in Shropshire? With April Fools' Day during the next round, there will probably be a good chance of more unusual articles...

March sees the WikiWomen's History Month, a series of collaborative efforts to aid the women's history WikiProject to coincide with Women's History Month and International Women's Day. A number of WikiCup participants have already started to take part. The project has a to-do list of articles needing work on the topic of women's history. Those interested in helping out with the project can find articles in need of attention there, or, alternatively, add articles to the list. Those interested in collaborating on articles on women's history are also welcome to use the WikiCup talk page to find others willing to lend a helping hand. Another collaboration currently running is an an effort from WikiCup participants to coordinate a number of Easter-themed did you know articles. Contributions are welcome!

A few final administrative issues. From now on, submission pages will need only a link to the article and a link to the nomination page, or, in the case of good article reviews, a link to the review only. See your submissions' page for details. This will hopefully make updating submission pages a little less tedious. If you are concerned that your nomination—whether it is at good article candidates, a featured process, or anywhere else—will not receive the necessary reviews, please list it on Wikipedia:WikiCup/Reviews. Questions are welcome on Wikipedia talk:WikiCup, and the judges are reachable on their talk pages or by email. Good luck! If you wish to start or stop receiving this newsletter, please feel free to add or remove yourself from Wikipedia:WikiCup/Newsletter/Send. J Milburn (talkemail) and The ed17 (talkemail) J Milburn (talk) 01:28, 1 March 2013 (UTC)


This thread on your Meta talk page from November, 2012 was mentioned. Thanks, EdJohnston (talk) 18:33, 1 March 2013 (UTC)

(But it had little enough to do with you.) Bishonen | talk 19:07, 1 March 2013 (UTC).

Why is the other editor guilty of editwarring when GabeMc made one more revert?[edit]

Again, absolutely nothing will be done against this tenditious editor![[51]]

It appears donating money to WP will allow an editor unlimited rights above everybody else like a paid for, God mode.

How far will WP go to support itself, in its failing venture, even if it means losing ALL it's up and coming new editors due to unfair, nonsensical, disciplinary practices?

Block me. IP's are cheap and ruining WP anyway (sarc). Soon only IPs will edit here.

RipWikipedia? No (talk) 22:47, 1 March 2013 (UTC)

Has Jhawkinson contributed to Swartz article as both editor and primary source?[edit]

A Daily Mail Online article, “Gunman Hoax That Forced MIT to Go On Lockdown Was REVENGE for Suicide of Reddit Co-Founder Aaron Swartz,” is cited as a secondary source at Aaron Swartz: Attacks, hacks and hoaxes.

Another reported that … the first public alert did not go out until 8:47am; ‘Not so timely,’ he observed.[151]

The Mail article gives the reporting person’s name: “John Hawkinson.”

Another Twitter user John Hawkinson wrote that … the first public alert did not go out until 8.47am.  ‘Not so timely,’ he wrote.

A User:Jhawkinson is listed as a frequent contributor to the Swartz article in WP.

487 edits on article: Aaron_Swartz.  Frequent users: Dervorguilla; David in DC; …; Jhawkinson; …

Are Jhawkinson and John Hawkinson the same person? --Dervorguilla (talk) 07:16, 4 March 2013 (UTC)

Could you, umm, clarify your thinking, regarding your raising of this issue? -- Seth Finkelstein (talk) 09:15, 4 March 2013 (UTC)
User A and user B contribute frequently to article CA quotes B in C.  Should the quote stay or go? --Dervorguilla (talk) 00:04, 5 March 2013 (UTC)
That would be a content dispute, right? Where do you think the first place to discuss it is? Where do you think the second place is? --Demiurge1000 (talk) 01:07, 5 March 2013 (UTC)
The first place:  Talk page (see Talk:Aaron_Swartz#Was_MIT_incident_a_hack_or_just_a_hoax.3F).
The second place:  Don’t know.  New at this.
Also, there could be more than just a content dispute going on.

I hope she's [Dervorgulla's] incorrect.  Because if she is, outing an editor calls for a ban.

Maybe he meant to say, “Because if she isn’t …”? --Dervorguilla (talk) 01:33, 5 March 2013 (UTC)
Double negatives. Don't you not unhate them? I know I don't ... or something. DBaK (talk) 08:35, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

Happy ending. --Dervorguilla (talk) 01:05, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

Please (urgently) check your e-mail[edit]

Hi Elen. Hope you're well. Are you still subscribed to Oversight-l? If so, please urgently search your inbox for messages with the subject line beginning [Oversight-l] [URGENT]. The first message was sent on 2 March, and at the time of my writing this the newest message in the thread was also sent later on 2 March. All that's needed from you is one signature on the OTRS wiki, and the sooner the better. If you aren't subscribed to Oversight-l, please e-mail ArbCom or one of the more active oversighters (Beeblebrox or Fluffernutter might be a good choice) to find out what we need you to do. Thanks very much, AGK [•] 20:57, 5 March 2013 (UTC)

Thanks AGK. I'd seen this a when it first came up, didn't deal with it immediately and then haven't been around for the last few weeks. I have now signed - and left a note on the OTRS admins page. Hope I'm not too late. I currently can't get onto OTRS itself, but that seems to be because the software I use to save passwords has flushed the password (and others - not a help). I'll have to get Keegan or someone to send me a replacement. --Elen of the Roads (talk) 01:33, 6 March 2013 (UTC)

Be my mentor still[edit]

In the past years, I had very little interest in improving Wikipedia. In fact, I've hurt people more than I did not intend, and I was a fanatic deletionist. However, since I was unblocked with mentorship agreements, I thought I could do anything I want, but then I realize there is more to helping the cause than just stand there and do nothing except nominating for deletion. In fact, I have to reluctantly agree with terms, and so far I have interests in improving pages about topics more than just deleting material. Lately, I have requested renaming of Chandra Levy, and I created season pages, like Cheers (season 6), and improved Fab Five: The Texas Cheerleader Scandal.

However, I haven't used User talk:George Ho/Mentorship discussions for half a year (or something like that) because I no longer have interest in recklessly requesting deletion on things that need a lot of improvement. Neverthless, I think that List of Curb Your Enthusiasm directors must go. Lately, I've not been receiving replies. I would hope that the page is in your watchlist, isn't it? I wonder if you want to continue as my mentor. If not, then surely I can find your replacement if necessary.

Note: This post is intended for only active and semi-active people. --George Ho (talk) 06:00, 7 March 2013 (UTC)

Yes it is on my watchlist George, and I apologise if I've missed anything I should have responded to. I've been very busy at work these past three months, and not very active on Wikipedia. But you've been doing so well, getting the balance right in your various suggestions, and working so well with other editors in the area, that I thought you probably didn't need a mentor most of the time.
I'm still here if you need me. Post your questions on this page, if you have anything you want to run by me. I will respond to them, or maybe one of my talk page watchers will respond (although not the rude IP I hope). But I think most of your suggestions are sound, and you are much more confident if other people have different opinions, so by and large I would say to just be bold and go with what you think.
I do agree with you about List of Curb Your Enthusiasm directors. Wikipedia is not a repository for every bit of trivia scraped off the back of dvd boxsets. Elen of the Roads (talk) 23:30, 7 March 2013 (UTC)

You've got mail![edit]

Hello, Elen of the Roads. Please check your email; you've got mail!
Message added 15:33, 7 March 2013 (UTC). It may take a few minutes from the time the email is sent for it to show up in your inbox. You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{You've got mail}} or {{ygm}} template.

~TheGeneralUser (talk) 15:33, 7 March 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 04 March 2013[edit]

The Signpost: 11 March 2013[edit]

You've got mail![edit]

Hello, Elen of the Roads. Please check your email; you've got mail!
Message added 07:18, 18 March 2013 (UTC). It may take a few minutes from the time the email is sent for it to show up in your inbox. You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{You've got mail}} or {{ygm}} template.

Rschen7754 07:18, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

Paul Bedson[edit]

You probably recall this editor. Last March you unblocked him and later blocked him. When you unblocked him he was denying sock puppetry. Looks like he was lying. See Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Paul Bedson - he started his Nasorean sock in February. I hate it when I AGF and get bitten, don't you? Dougweller (talk) 22:02, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

That's a pain in the patoot! --Elen of the Roads (talk) 22:02, 19 March 2013 (UTC)

The Signpost: 18 March 2013[edit]

I mentioned you..[edit]

... in this query, as Fram has reverted User:Peter Damian back to the "scarlet letter" state. Bishonen | talk 11:26, 23 March 2013 (UTC).

...which I had already said to Elen (look for "Fram" higher on this talk page). Fram (talk) 12:30, 23 March 2013 (UTC)
The thing here is that everywhere else on the internet (never mind the real world) the basic difference between "socking" (which implies deceit and attempts to post falsely as someone else) and "posting while banned" (which is not complying with a particular restriction but is not necessarily deceitful) is widely acknowledged. The former can be a subset of the latter but not necessarily so. At some point, essentially because of how the whole sockpuppeting policy on Wikipedia developed historically, Wikipedia missed that distinction. But that's the usual inertia of inadequacy on Wikipedia not how things actually are, i.e. usual Wikipedia stupidity. In other words, this isn't really sock puppeting. It's "I'm banned, but I'll post anyway, letting everyone know who this is".
The surreal thing about it is that calling this sock puppeting and taking actions to "punish" the user, somehow flips things on their head by assuming that a particular online/Wikipedia account is *more real* than the actual person behind it. It's sort of crazy and it creeps me out frankly. I'm gonna undo these bad faithed retaliatory actions.Volunteer Marek 02:46, 24 March 2013 (UTC)
Actually, he didn't let everyone know who he was. I, for