From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search


Arbitration enforcement action appeal by TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

Appeal declined. There's no "clear and substantial consensus" of uninvolved admins to grant the appeal. T. Canens (talk) 00:42, 3 February 2018 (UTC)
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.
Procedural notes: The rules governing arbitration enforcement appeals are found here. According to the procedures, a "clear, substantial, and active consensus of uninvolved editors" is required to overturn an arbitration enforcement action.

To help determine any such consensus, involved editors may make brief statements in separate sections but should not edit the section for discussion among uninvolved editors. Editors are normally considered involved if they are in a current dispute with the sanctioning or sanctioned editor, or have taken part in disputes (if any) related to the contested enforcement action. Administrators having taken administrative actions are not normally considered involved for this reason alone (see WP:UNINVOLVED).

Appealing user 
TheTimesAreAChanging (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 20:13, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
Sanction being appealed 
"TheTimesAreAChanging placed on indefinite probation in the topic area for refusal to gain consensus before making controversial edits."
Administrator imposing the sanction 
Coffee (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA)
Notification of that administrator 

Statement by TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

I made a single normal edit to List of Trump–Russia dossier allegations, which I believe was mandated by BLP, at 19:54, 25 January 2018, after previously broaching the idea two days earlier and getting qualified support from My very best wishes. BullRangifer, the creator of the article and who has a very different perspective on these matters than I do, thanked me for my edit, later defending it on the talk page. The article was not under DS at the time; if it had been, I probably would have been less collaborative, as there were several paragraphs of "Commentary" (e.g., here) that I might have "challenged." (If possible—creating a new article without such sanctions is obviously a way to bypass them and force content through, if the content is considered "long-standing" by the time the sanctions are in force.) Yet SPECIFICO, who had no problem with the several paragraphs of opinion commentary, reverted my addition of the widely-reported testimony of Trump's longtime bodyguard, Keith Schiller, stating that "Statement of Trump's denial is sufficient." I disagreed, so I made a single normal revert at 07:19, 26 January. (To date, none of the editors in the ensuing discussion have agreed with SPECIFICO.) Ten hours later, after SPECIFICO inaccurately told Coffee that I had violated the article's non-existent DS at 17:39, Coffee added the template (including his brand-new "civility" requirement) at 17:43 and logged it at 17:45. While acknowledging that "I couldn't do more as the page restrictions hadn't been added to that article yet," Coffee still decided to place me on indefinite probation for violating the DS, which he apparently considered to take effect retroactively. I think this sanction is just another example of Coffee's heavy-handed and erratic behavior as an administrator, and would like to see it reviewed and revoked.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 20:13, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

Floquenbeam, I am 99% certain that DS were not in effect at the time of my edit, and I looked carefully. Once the talk page has been tagged, I believe that the warning remains visible on earlier revisions of the talk page, but that does not mean that the warning was actually there the whole time. That's why I included Coffee's confirmation that "the page restrictions hadn't been added to that article yet," as well as the relevant log, which states: "List of Trump–Russia dossier allegations placed under indefinite 1RR/consensus/civility required restriction."TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 21:11, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

Floquenbeam, I honestly did not see that. I've stricken my comment above.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 21:25, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

When SPECIFICO violated Discretionary Sanctions at Timeline of Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections ([2], [3]), I warned her and she self-reverted. When I (inadvertently) violated Discretionary Sanctions (that had not been logged, with no edit notice), I returned to Wikipedia and suddenly found that SPECIFICO had reported me directly to Coffee and I had already been sanctioned, with no opportunity to respond. How is this sanction anything but punitive?TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 21:44, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

Mandruss, this comment really misses the mark. No, I didn't check the log, but I obviously wouldn't have made the edit if there had been an edit notice.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 22:06, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

Here's the talk page as of the time of my revert: [4] I had not edited it, and there was not yet any discussion of the disputed content. Coffee could have easily asked me to self-revert before immediately imposing a new hard-to-understand restriction.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 22:26, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

SPECIFICO and Volunteer Marek continue to misrepresent Coffee's stated rationale for the "probation" restriction, which is not that I violated any DS (none were logged for that page), but rather that I failed to preemptively go beyond the requirements of DS in seeking consensus before making any potentially controversial edits. By that standard, all of us could arbitrarily be put under "probation." Some admins say that, in fact, all of us already are under informal probation by virtue of editing in an area subject to DS, but—contrary to SPECIFICO's latest comment—I am deeply concerned that this "probation" is poorly understood and will probably be used against me in some arbitrary way at a later date even if it does not have any immediate effect. I also have grave concerns that Coffee's "Consensus Required" restriction itself outlaws normal BRD and has created a chilling effect in this topic area, and that his newly-invented "civility" restriction will further compound the problem.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 22:54, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Coffee[edit]

Trying to go to sleep but I have to correct what is being misrepresented here: The sanction was for a violation of overall WP:ARBAP2's standards of conduct. It was done under authority of WP:ARBAPDS which allow administrators the ability to apply sanctions at their discretion to anyone editing in the topic area. As this user was already made aware of the DS existing in the topic area, the sanction was made in full validity. It was not a sanction based on page restrictions. And my sanctioning of the article, after realizing it wasn't during the review I made, had nothing to do with the probation sanction placed on this user. This is made extremely clear in the sanction notice, and I feel this user is being obtuse. I also agree that this user has already violated the probation sanction (by the comments on their talk page), and I would personally levy a 24 hour block for such conduct. I however really, really need rest after today's events (some of you are aware of) and therefore will not be conducting that action. This is all I will state here for now. Good night/day folks. Coffee // have a ☕️ // beans // 21:23, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

I'll reiterate for some who are confused on this: The probation restriction is explained in detail at WP:EDR, which is the list of restrictions I'm permitted to use (along with blocks) per my discretion in the topic area, as per WP:ARBAPDS. This sanction is merely more of a severe warning, with one additional caveat: it states that regardless if they edit an article with a direct editnotice on it, with the consensus restriction required, they are not allowed to violated our WP:CONSENSUS or WP:BRD policy in any area of the AP2 topic area. This is simply a way to attempt to prevent disruption, without levying an actual topic ban or a full editing restriction on the user in all topic areas. The full explanation of this is found at our policy: WP:PROBATION: The user on probation may be banned from pages that they edit in a certain way (usually disruptively) by an uninvolved administrator. Probation is usually used as an alternative to an outright topic ban in cases where the editor shows some promise of learning better behavior. Coffee // have a ☕️ // beans // 12:43, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
@Seraphimblade: See above for further reasoning on why I think this may actually benefit editing in the topic area. Interested to hear your thoughts. Coffee // have a ☕️ // beans // 13:00, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
@Lankiveil and Seraphimblade: See this note above and my comments in the appeal below this one regarding this matter. Pinging to keep you both in the loop here. Face-smile.svg Coffee // have a ☕️ // beans // 15:34, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
@Sandstein: Your second comment here is currently in violation of the Arbitration Committee's expectations of administrators in dealing on this noticeboard: "Administrators wishing to dismiss an enforcement request should act cautiously and be especially mindful that their actions do not give the impression that they are second-guessing the Arbitration Committee or obstructing the enforcement of their decisions." - I highly suggest you retract it. Or that whomever closes this completely disregards the remark. We are not here to question or comment on ArbCom's decisions, or their decided ways of dealing with conduct issues. All administrators commenting here should have known this before making any statements here whatsoever. Coffee // have a ☕️ // beans // 15:41, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Statement by MrX[edit]

TheTimesAreAChanging unambiguously violated the page restriction prohibiting reinstatement of any challenged (via reversion) edits without obtaining consensus on the talk page of the article. As surprised that I am that he received the lightest possible sanction, I'm actually shocked that he would have the audacity to appeal it.

In my opinion, the sanction should be increased to a topic ban for blatantly abusing process by Wikilawyering and wasting editors time.- MrX 🖋 20:28, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

@Floquenbeam: Yes, I did overlook that the edit notice was placed after the fact. That does make the situation a bit more ambiguous. However, TheTimesAreAChanging reverted without consulting the talk page which does not bode well in his favor.- MrX 🖋 21:03, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
  • TTAAC wasn't sanctioned for violating an editing restriction; he was sanctioned for "repeated refusal to gain consensus before making controversial edits in the topic area." It is well within an admin's authority to place such a sanction on an editor, so the appeal is completely without merit.- MrX 🖋 21:27, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

Statement by SPECIFICO[edit]

ToTTAAC: Please don't misrepresent my actions by stating the article was not under the Consensus DS at the time you violated it. The history of the talk page clearly shows the DS in effect at that time. [5] Coffee later updated it to add the Civility Requirement. Please withdraw this appeal and if you edit according to policy you will have no further concerns.

Frankly, given TTAAC's previous TBAN, his socking to evade the ban (necessitating in a block on top of the ban [6] and then his quickly-broken assurances that prompted Sandstein to reinstate him, "escalating sanctions" would suggest that a new TBAN would not be unexpected. It's therefore hard to see any problem with the probation imposed by Coffee. SPECIFICO talk 20:34, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

Now I just saw that TTAAC is broadcasting the same disparagement of me and Coffee on the article talk page. Given that he just acknowledged awareness of the Civility Requirement, it seems that a new, second, violation of the DS has occurred as well as a violation of his Probation sanction. [7]

@MjolnirPants and MrX: The new DS template added the Civility Restriction replacing the former template that already included the Consensus Restriction. [8] The Consensus Restriction was in effect at the time of the violation, plainly visible both at the time of the edit and at the time he denied and removed my request on his talk page that he undo the violation. SPECIFICO talk 21:33, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

@DHeyward: I meant to ping you, not MP above. Sorry. You appear to have repeated TTAAC's misrepresentation of the Consensus Required sanction on that page when he made the offending edit. SPECIFICO talk 23:55, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

I am not understanding TTAAC's basis for keeping this appeal open. Here [9] he concedes that he violated the Consensus Required sanction. He says "why wasn't I warned and asked to self-revert?" But here, I warned him six hours before he was sanctioned and asked him to self revert. And his response was to deny the violation, even after he was sanctioned: [10] It's pretty simple and for those who are not familiar with the difficulties of editing American Politics, this is an example of how much time can be wasted denying, discussing, and proving the obvious, all still apparently with no resolution. TTAAC, why not just withdraw the appeal. What basis is their for the appeal given the facts? SPECIFICO talk 00:21, 27 January 2018 (UTC)

@Sandstein: RE: Probation - Types of Sanctions and WP:PROBATION. I can understand that you disagree with the particular sanction, but the violation of DS is clear and it's part of a long-term pattern of abuse. So I suggest that the solution, if you disapprove of the Probation sanction, would be to apply one you feel would be more suitable and effective. SPECIFICO talk 14:55, 27 January 2018 (UTC)

@My very best wishes: Please see immediately above. SPECIFICO talk 17:42, 27 January 2018 (UTC)

@My very best wishes: OK, you don't think that WP:PROBATION is meaningful. Is it the purpose of an appeal at this page to second-guess site norms? This is not even the claim the appellant makes. He seems to be going for "I am not actually a disruptive editor" -- i.e. that there's been an error of fact. But nobody's buying that one. So why not propose a different sanction. Sanctions are supposed to be escalating for repeat violations. His last one was an indefinite TBAN he slithered out of. He's wasted a lot of community time since then, routinely disparaging other editors (not least yourself) and failing to engage in collaborative editing. Do you suggest we just wait for the next reunion to rehash the same behaviors next time? SPECIFICO talk 18:40, 27 January 2018 (UTC)

Some of the Admin comments don't appear to focus on the theory of this appeal or the powers of Admins in AE appeals. They read more like box seats at a command performance of ANI. TTAAC has not complained about the particular sanction that Coffee imposed. TTAAC has denied the violation. After all the trouble taken to refute this deflection, does any Admin still believe it's true? So we have an infraction, and in the case of this editor it's one of dozens that have been documented here over the course of the past +/- 16 months. Many of the editors who went to the trouble of providing diffs in those past cases, including the ones that resulted in sanctions, may well have concluded that there's no willingness to enforce DS, let alone escalating blocks, and so the editors with memory of all the bad behavior simply move on. I certainly am not going to waste a bright sunny day dredging up the history of this sad dysfunction and disruption. If you don't like the particular sanction, propose a more effective one. Which Admin is going to waste his or her time in the future exercising discretion when it's only a gateway to the Royal ANI here that AE has become? Otherwise, an AP3 Arbcom case will come sooner or later and what a regrettable outcome that will have been! SPECIFICO talk 18:08, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

As so often happens at these AE threads, the appellant, given enough time, is hoisted with his own petard. In this diff [11] TTAAC says contrary to SPECIFICO's latest comment — I am deeply concerned that this "probation" is poorly understood and will probably be used against me. Now first off, he misrepresents what I wrote (as can be verified from that link). I said that he has not presented any complaint about WP:PROBATION as a theory that supports vacating his sanction. But he (either incompetently or disingenuously) states that his "deep concern" means I somehow misrepresented his unstated inner concerns. This may look like nitpicking. Fine, he realized that after my post he hadn't a leg to stand on so he wanted to add to the file. Maybe -- we don't know. But my reason for pointing this out is that TTAAC in numerous talk page posts and many edit summaries on many articles, will include utterly irrelevant personal remarks (almost always disparaging ones) that add nothing to the discussion or to the article text we're all trying to improve. Admins, please look at TTAAC's post. It's typical of so much of his participation. His personal remark about me is entirely gratuitous. But it is an instructive example of his behavior. The personalized remark about me adds nothing to the meaning or significance of his message. And yet, TTAC does this over and over, even after previous AE sanctions -- sanctions after which a rational adjustment in style and tone could well have been expected. And never mind the irony that he's concerned about the harm that might come to him due to false aspersions that could be "used against" him -- even concerning a violation that numerous editors have researched and documented here. SPECIFICO talk 23:45, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Steve Quinn[edit]

On the article's talk page, several editors have indeed noted that remedies and sanctions were in place when TTAC restored the material (without consensus):

  1. SPECIFICO [12], [13];
  2. Seemingly inderectly by Atsme [14],
  3. Volunteer Marek [15],
  4. Galobtter [16],
  5. Mandruss [17]] (It was more of question while supplying a diff showing sanctions were previously in place [18]), Then stating that "the remedies and DS were in place as of four days ago" [19]
  6. And most recently, myself, apparently after this appeal had already started [20].

So, in a manner of speaking, this was an opportunity for TTAC to undo their edit rather seek an appeal. As was noted below, this is now an opportunity to undo the edit and withdraw the appeal, or simply withdraw the appeal and save time. ---Steve Quinn (talk) 06:14, 27 January 2018 (UTC)

Actually, I meant, it seems there was an opportunity for TTAC to undo their edit, and thereby collaboratively participate, before an Admin felt the need to sanction him/her. ---Steve Quinn (talk) 06:32, 27 January 2018 (UTC)`

The focus here is not BRD. The focus here is editing according to consensus rules. Anyone who has edited on WP:ARBAP2 pages for any reasonable length of time knows about this. It seems all the non-admins on this page are experienced in the WP:ARBAP2 area. And in this instance there were warnings from other editors that went unheeded. I also wish to commend Coffee for watching this area in order to keep the peace in a forthright and reasonable manner. Coffee seems to have explained what probation is supposed to be. And I think this is better than an outright topic ban or a block, imho. I don't know what other option there is? imho. ---Steve Quinn (talk) 02:58, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Volunteer Marek[edit]

With regard to TTAAC's action I don't think there is any doubt that they violated the DS. TTAAC is also quite aware of how this works, as they've been sanctioned for this before, they've brought reports against others, they've commented widely on DS in this topic area, etc. There's basically no way they did not know they were breaking a DS.

So TTAC broke DS. It looks to me like User:Coffee was trying to be nice about it. I'm guessing because he previously caught some slack for being heavy handed (including from me). So he imposed the "probation" instead of an outright topic ban, probably hoping that'd result in less controversy. But sometimes, with some people... you give an inch, they try to take a mile. That's what's going on with this appeal.

In my understanding a "probation" is essentially a "soft" topic ban from a particular article. By that I mean that the user is not outright banned from an article, and may continue to edit it, but at any time, if any uninvolved admin thinks they're not acting in good faith, then the ban hammer comes down. It's basically a "continue to edit this article at your own risk" kind of restriction.

I have no idea who came up with this. I don't like it. But that's just my view, and this is indeed one of the proscribed remedies over at WP:EDR, so it was perfectly fine for Coffee to use it. And regardless in this particular case, some kind of sanction was warranted, and Coffee, rather than being criticized should be commended for trying to be diplomatic and "soft". But as always on Wikipedia, no good deed...

Volunteer Marek (talk) 21:18, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Let me also suggest that IF you're going to grant this appeal (whether outright, or replace the probation with a straight up topic ban) then please, somebody go and make the necessary changes to WP:EDR so this web of bureaucratic policies and sanctions doesn't get even more discombobulated.Volunteer Marek (talk) 21:21, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Statement by JFG[edit]

Oh God such wikilawyering! Cut the drama, vacate the sanction, and trout SPECIFICO for their propension to snitch on fellow editors. — JFG talk 11:24, 29 January 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Seraphim System[edit]

  • Comment I don't think our policies are meant to be combed through to find obscure and rarely cited sections - part of applying and interpreting them is following community norms and customs. For these rules to be effective as deterrents they need to be predictable and comprehensible, based on predictable standards of enforcement that have been developed in community discussions about their applications. My understanding of how a situation like this would usually be handled is that an editor would be formally warned, and then brought to AE where an appropriate article ban or topic ban would be applied in a transparent way after a discussion. I know discretionary sanctions allow an admin to act alone, procedurally, but that doesn't make it a good idea. And I don't think it is necessary here, in fact I have never seen this "probation" sanction used before. I also expect we are going to see additional issues from this new civility restriction. I would support reversing this sanction and issuing a formal warning, as they largely seem to serve the same purpose.Seraphim System (talk) 04:35, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
  • So effectively, the user has been placed on notice that they can be article banned at an administrator's discretion in a DS area where they are already on notice due to DS - the policy about discretionary sanctions clearly states that they must be "necessary and proportionate for the smooth running of the project." - We have been discussing for two days whether a sanction with no effect was procedurally correct. Why?
  • I think there may be an underlying conduct issue here but am dismayed that instead of presenting the evidence at AE, editors have started personally requesting intervention from Coffee on her talk page [21]. The sanctioning admin has also made unsolicited public statements about an involved editor supporting the block and defending the sanction here: No one ever gives two shits about my emotions here, and practically no one realizes I'm capable of change. Volunteer Marek is the only person I can truly point to who gave me the opportunity to improve, and we've had a decent working relationship ever since. [22].
  • I am not involved in the topic area, but I don't think any of the editors in this topic area have clean hands. This is something that is taken into consideration during AE discussions. The policy says "Administrators do not need explicit consensus to enforce arbitration decisions and can always act unilaterally. However, when the case is not clear-cut they are encouraged, before acting, to seek input from their colleagues at arbitration enforcement." - I am concerned this pattern of enforcement will have a chilling effect on DS topic areas. Seraphim System (talk) 23:39, 30 January 2018 (UTC)

NOTE: This was moved here by Coffee with this edit summary [23] you are very much involved in topic area after receiving an upheld DS block from me which has altered the structure of the discussion by moving a previously uncontested comment from two days ago [24] - I have never edited this article, I am not involved in this dispute, and I don't think that receiving a DS block from Coffee in another topic area makes be "very much involved in topic area". I have previously participated in this RfC Talk:Russian_interference_in_the_2016_United_States_elections/Archive_17#RfC:_Should_the_article_include_Dan_Goodin's_criticism_of_the_DHS_Joint_Analysis_Report? which informed my comment that there is questionable conduct in this topic area all around, and that I believe the ongoing and longstanding disputes between these editors are complex/controversial enough that clear evidence should be presented via the complaint process and the determination of appropriate sanctions should be made by consensus - (in this case some admins have proposed alternate sanctions [25] [26]) - instead of by editors posting requests to Coffee's talk page. Seraphim System (talk) 00:33, 31 January 2018 (UTC)

Discussion among uninvolved editors about the appeal by TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

I think this sanction is just another example of Coffee's heavy-handed and erratic behavior as an administrator, and would like to see it reviewed and revoked. @TheTimesAreAChanging:I strongly suggest you strike or remove this bit. Not only is it not helpful, it's a personal attack not backed up by evidence. And no, I'm not suggesting you find evidence as that would only exacerbate other issues. Please, just strike or remove this bit (I'll remove this comment as well, if you do). Even if Coffee is the things you allege, that doesn't prove your sanction was unjust; that still needs to be judged on its own merits. For what it's worth, I found the edit you gave a diff of to be perfectly fine, as well. I'd have supported it if I'd been involved at talk. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 20:19, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

@Floquenbeam: I found the following at WP:SANCTIONS:
Probation (supervised editing)
The user on probation may be banned from pages that they edit in a certain way (usually disruptively) by an uninvolved administrator. Probation is usually used as an alternative to an outright topic ban in cases where the editor shows some promise of learning better behavior.
I read it to mean that uninvolved admins are free to "stalk" the sanctioned editors edits to that page and issue additional sanctions without further justification (possibly beyond a diff to the edit in question, and a short explanation of what's wrong with it). I agree that it seems to be the most lenient form of sanction, as a gung-ho admin could do the same thing without violating policy to any editor, in theory. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 21:02, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
For what it's worth, I found the edit you gave a diff of to be perfectly fine, as well. With respect, it's not worth anything in this venue, as there is no such thing as a retroactive consensus. The only pertinent facts are: (1) Despite TheTimesAreAChanging's repeated claim, the remedies and DS were in effect at the time of their revert, and (2) the circumstances do not approach a consensus for the edit, by any interpretation I've ever seen in my ~18 months of heavy involvement at Donald Trump. It doesn't speak well for TTAAC that they even mention a "thank" as having an iota of relevance here; the remedies quite clearly state "must obtain consensus on the talk page". There is nothing particularly complicated about these restrictions, even for someone as limited as me. ―Mandruss  21:06, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
With respect, it's not worth anything in this venue, as there is no such thing as a retroactive consensus. I'm not suggesting that the appeal should be overturned because I think the edit was fine, I'm simply telling TTAAC that I would have defended his edit, even though I took issue with a part of his appeal statement. TTAAC and I are usually at opposite ends of similar discussions, and as such, it's worth pointing out those occasions on which we are in agreement. The idea here is to foster collaboration, not to undermine it, after all. Olive branches and the occasional compliment help with that. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 21:21, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
@SPECIFICO: I haven't said anything about the timing of the restrictions. My comment about his edit was not meant to convey anything more than the knowledge that -had I been aware of the discussion of that edit- I'd have supported including it. See my response to Mandruss, above for more on that. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 21:55, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

Overturn. It's another case where we shouldn't be here. It's arguably a necessary edit as a BLP required NPOV presentation. Blanking would also be arguably necessary if sourced, exculpatory statements are not presented. The fact that page wasn't under sanction the entire time is just more grist. Remove "probation" as it's just a setup for any type of future complaint. It solves nothing and only provides an excuse for a flimsy future topic-ban. If anything, convert it to a "reminder." --DHeyward (talk) 21:16, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

@Floquenbeam:, it's my understanding that standard DS does not include "1RR/Consensus required" language. That is a page level restriction that is made on a case by case basis. There is no DS violation until page level restrictions are placed and logged. Coffee creates special templates for each page, I believe. --DHeyward (talk) 21:24, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
This was the notice in place at the time of the violation. ―Mandruss  21:34, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
Anyone can place a template. Restrictions, however must be logged here[27]. I only see Today's entry for page level sanctions. --DHeyward (talk) 21:38, 26 January 2018 (UTC) Primefac see too. --DHeyward (talk) 21:39, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
Anyone can place a template, true, and I once tried to do so out of ignorance. It was promptly disputed and removed because, as the template message says, "An administrator has applied the restriction above to this article." And, iin fact, that template was placed by Amortias, an admin, as the page history clearly shows. Failure to log, if any, is a wikilawyering technicality, as editors cannot be expected to go check the log before taking action. ―Mandruss  21:42, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
It's required to be logged. And yes, I do check the logs when I see page restrictions. Logging it is part of the notice requirements and spelled out in the DS ArbCom ruling. And yes, it's ridiculous but being brought to AE on dotted i/crossed t violations under scrupulous rules lawyering should require scrupulous adherence. It's not under page level sanctions unless logged. @Floquenbeam: --DHeyward (talk) 21:52, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
Editing restrictions have to be logged, but any admin can sanction any editor editing in the American politics subject area, provided that they are aware that discretionary sanctions are in force for the area of conflict. See WP:AC/DS. You seem not to grasp that. - MrX 🖋 21:56, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
TTAAC has not stated that they checked the log, couldn't find the log entry, and therefore ignored the template. We can safely assume that is not what happened. Thus your argument has no bearing on the issue of TTAAC's actions, and I repeat the word wikilawyering. It's the old story ending with "...and besides, I don't have a dog." ―Mandruss  22:00, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
He wasn't sanctioned for violating an editing restriction. He was sanctioned for or his repeated refusal to gain consensus before making controversial edits in the topic area. Admins are given discretion for imposing such sanctions, so this appeal lacks merit. If this were a new editor who had just wandered into a Trump article, I would recommend giving a pass for not seeing the talk page notice. That is not the case here.- MrX 🖋 21:47, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
Given that this is not a violation of the page restriction, but a general editor restriction, I am concerned that Coffee viewed TTAC's talk page comments as a probation violation and "blockable" with no diffs and nothing I see as obvious. I am very concerned that this condition will be abused. Everyone seemed to believe this was a page level violation being enforced but now it's not so there is definitely a clarity and communication issue. --DHeyward (talk) 22:11, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
@Floquenbeam: This is TTAC's only edit to their talk page[28] in 10 days. Blockable probation violation? --DHeyward (talk) 22:25, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

@TheTimesAreAChanging: I'm astounded that you are still claiming that there was no notice in place. I have already linked to it, I know you saw the link, and you are beginning to bend my AGF. Here it is again: [29]Mandruss  22:19, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

@Mandruss:That's the talk page notice, the actual editnotice is here: Template:Editnotices/Page/List_of_Trump–Russia_dossier_allegations. It appears when you try to edit the page. But I agree that the argument that TTAAC was unaware of that condition is untenable. He scrolled past notification every time he edited the talk page. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 22:22, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

@TheTimesAreAChanging: and there was not yet any discussion of the disputed content. The template says: "any edits that have been challenged (via reversion)". NOT "any edits that have been challenged (via talk page discussion)". Your edit became a challenged edit immediately upon the first revert of it. It seems to me the problem is your unwillingness to read and understand clearly stated restrictions. Editors who are not willing to do that shouldn't be editing articles under the restrictions. One mistake can be forgiven if you're new to the restrictions (are you?), but, after all this discussion you still haven't read, understood, and resolved to observe the restrictions, let alone withdrawn this appeal of a very lenient slap-on-wrist sanction. ―Mandruss  22:39, 26 January 2018 (UTC)

  • Can I draw the admin's attention to the personal attack against Coffee that makes up the latter part of the origina filing? I quoted it at the very top of this section. I've asked TTAAC to strike or remove it, but gotten no response. Would one of you (@Floquenbeam and Primefac:) please at least make the same request for striking it, or redact it yourself? It's really unnecessary, it's inflammatory, and it's petty. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 23:04, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
  • I would suggest to grant this appeal per arguments by Sandstein. This is yet another unilaterally invented and unhelpful type of editing restriction that should never be used. P.S. I am not telling that editing by this user was fine. I am only saying such "editing restriction" is meaningless and should never be used. My very best wishes (talk) 17:36, 27 January 2018 (UTC) It seems that type of "restriction" indeed exists. Why? It does not restrict anyone from doing anything. My very best wishes (talk) 03:55, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
You have me totally confused. Are you talking about the restrictions or the sanction? The sanction you linked (probation) does in fact restrict someone from doing something, as it clearly states. That does not make it a "restriction" as the term is being used here; we are referring to the editing restrictions in the remedies template. ―Mandruss  04:26, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
Restricts from doing what? It tells "Probation is used as an alternative to an outright topic ban in cases where the editor shows some promise of learning better behavior." The contributor does not receive any topic ban. I checked if "probation" was ever issued to anyone as an editing restriction during last two years and found only a couple of cases when someone issued a "probation" and an editing restriction (1RR or a topic ban). Otherwise, it does not make any sense. My very best wishes (talk) 04:36, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
There is a time and place to discuss things like that, and in the appeal of a sanction that follows the letter of the written rules is not it. Since that's an arb page I'm not even sure ordinary editors have much say in the matter, anyway. SS speaks below of "combing through" said rules; I call it knowing the rules better than most admins and that's something to be credited, not criticized. ―Mandruss  05:04, 28 January 2018 (UTC)

Result of the appeal by TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.
  • What is "indefinite probation"? --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:24, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
@MrX: But was that restriction in place when the edit was made? If I'm reading timestamps right, it was added afterwards? --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:31, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
Answering my own question, it looks like the DS was already in place on the article, based on the talk page notice, but Coffee just recently added the edit notice after TTAAC's edit. --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:46, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
Based on Primfac's comment, I have a 3rd question: is there any reason not to block for that edit instead? That's clearly within the topic area, and the idea that it was exempt because it was a BLP issue is not reasonable. I'm still curious about the first two questions, though, even if they might be moot. --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:38, 26 January 2018 (UTC) Striking based on Primefac's strike... --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:50, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
So to clarify after a multi-admin brainfart... DS were in place, albeit without an edit notice. While I still want to know what "indefinite probation" is, I find it hard to believe that this sanction should be undone. --Floquenbeam (talk) 20:50, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
@TheTimesAreAChanging: Looks like they were added on the 22nd: [30]. --Floquenbeam (talk) 21:22, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
@DHeyward: see diff immediately above in my reply to TTAAC. Article sanctions were apparently in place, just no edit notice. --Floquenbeam (talk) 21:30, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
  • Now I remember why I only edit WP:AE once every 3 months. The arcane rules make my head hurt. As I now understand it, the recent arbcom decision (see WP:ACN) says that page restrictions can't be enforced if there's no editnotice. However, Coffee has just pointed out above that it was a sanction under the general sanctions for this topic, for repeated addition of reverted info in this topic area. Not an article-level sanction. So the question for reviewing admins is: Is this editor probation an acceptable use of admin discretion based on the general American Politics sanctions. Everything else about timing of editnotice is a sidetrack. To answer that question, I'd say that since there are really no consequences to the sanction beyond heightened scrutiny, which was happening anyway due to previous topic ban, that the sanction is reasonable. --Floquenbeam (talk) 21:44, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
  • So... um... I find it hard to be sympathetic with the OP when they were topic-banned a fortnight ago from WP:ARBAPDS (which, for those living under a rock, is post-1932 politics), and (as I just found) had the appeal declined two days ago, so you shouldn't have been editing the page in the first place. I'm amazed you actually got away with that, so the fact that you're only on probation makes me think that Coffee was actually being lenient. Primefac (talk) 20:32, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
    @MrX:, they already are ^ Primefac (talk) 20:36, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
    I'm an idiot who can't read a timestamp (I think I need some sleep as well); the tban was last year. Still, you would think that someone who has been tbanned for this nonsense before would know about how to not get flagged for it again. I stick with my previous statement that I feel Coffee was being lenient with just "probation". Primefac (talk) 20:44, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
    @DHeyward:, you're kidding, right? Take a look at the page right before Coffee changed the notice - third notice, second bullet: Limit of one revert in 24 hours: This article is under WP:1RR (one revert per editor per article per 24-hour period). so... 1RR definitely holds. Additionally, there two arbs who edited the sanction template, which means that by SILENCE or other policy they approved of the language. Primefac (talk) 21:30, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
    To echo Floq's post above, I agree that the sanction is reasonable; if the OP stays within the bounds of ARBAPDS (because you cannot make the argument that they don't know about it, or that they won't look for DS's in the future) then there is no issue. Primefac (talk) 21:53, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
    @TheTimesAreAChanging:, I'm going to echo the above request to remove the personal attack/aspersions cast at Coffee re: his admin action history in the last sentence of your original post; not only is it inflammatory but we are not here to discuss their overall conduct as an administrator. Primefac (talk) 23:36, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
  • Decline the appeal. The sanction is clearly within discretion and, if anything, the gentlest sanction the admin could come up with. The only change I would argue for is for TTAAC to be banned from that page outright, because probation is obscure and not widely understood. GoldenRing (talk) 23:17, 26 January 2018 (UTC)
  • I would grant the appeal simply because the sanction does not define or link to what "probation" even is. I don't know what it is either. It's not possible to follow an undefined restriction. This would be without prejudice to imposing a defined restriction. Sandstein 09:22, 27 January 2018 (UTC)
  • OK, so probation is apparently "supervised editing". This is pointless in a discretionary sanctions topic area, where everybody is already on probation, so to speak. A sanction that does nothing is a waste of time for everybody. I'd grant the appeal and lift the sanction for this reason. Sandstein 09:07, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
  • I'm also confused on what "probation" is. An uninvolved administrator can already sanction editors under DS, provided they've been made aware, and can do so immediately upon noticing a violation. So does the "probation" remedy actually do anything at all? It seems to me like an anachronism. Seraphimblade Talk to me 05:15, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
  • I'm fine with a sanction of some sort being applied here, but add me to the list of admins confused about what "probation" means in this context. Lankiveil (speak to me) 08:22, 28 January 2018 (UTC).
    • @Coffee: Thanks. On that basis I'm inclined to decline the appeal, but it would be good to have a wider discussion about the practice of "probation", which while obviously allowed is quite unorthodox in my experience. Given the seemingly intractable problems in this area, maybe unorthodox is what we need. Lankiveil (speak to me) 00:55, 30 January 2018 (UTC).
  • What Sandstein said. ~Awilley (talk) 16:30, 28 January 2018 (UTC)
  • Decline appeal, I don't think it changes much, but it was within discretion. Courcelles (talk) 17:00, 30 January 2018 (UTC)
  • As far as I can tell, the only effect of "probation" in a DS area is that it counts as an active sanction for awareness purposes, so is effectively a permanent alert until lifted (see WP:AC/DS#aware.aware point 2). It's more useful when imposed outside DS (whether by an arbcom remedy, or by a community discussion), which is presumably the reason for its existence on WP:EDR. If we want to put TTAAC under a "discuss before potentially controversial edit" and/or 1RR restriction, we should just do that. T. Canens (talk) 00:19, 31 January 2018 (UTC)

Richard Arthur Norton (1958- )[edit]

Richard Arthur Norton (1956- ) has been blocked for a month by GoldenRing. Spartaz Humbug! 06:23, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.

This request may be declined without further action if insufficient or unclear information is provided in the "Request" section below.
Requests may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs (not counting required information), except by permission of a reviewing administrator.

Request concerning Richard Arthur Norton (1958- )[edit]

User who is submitting this request for enforcement 
Rusf10 (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) 02:47, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
User against whom enforcement is requested 
Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Search DS alerts: in user talk history • in system log

Sanction or remedy to be enforced
Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Richard Arthur Norton (1958- )#Amendments :
Diffs of edits that violate this sanction or remedy, and an explanation how these edits violate it 
  1. December 18, 2017 Page was created by RAN as redirect
  2. February 3, 2018 Page was converted from a redirect to an article in violation of RAN's topic ban on article creation.
Diffs of previous relevant sanctions, if any 
  1. September 26, 2013 added link to external website where he contributed, resulted in two week ban
  2. March 10, 2014- created article in violation of ban, resulting in one month ban.
If discretionary sanctions are requested, supply evidence that the user is aware of them (see WP:AC/DS#Awareness and alerts)
  • Previously given a discretionary sanction for conduct in the area of conflict, see above diffs.

Additional comments by editor filing complaint 

Richard Arthur Norton (1958-) (RAN) creates scores of redirects everyday. While it is not clear that creating a redirect would be a violation of his ban on article creation since a redirect technically is not an article, what he did today was clearly a violation. About two months ago he created the page Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey as a redirect. Today he converted that redirect into an article. No other user edited the article between these two revisions.

@Awilley:That is an accurate summary of events, nothing is left out. RAN's explanation is extremely misleading. When he split the information out of the other article it was information exclusively authored by him. Only a minor edit was made by another user. So basically he's trying to sidestep his ban by writing an article within another article and then spinning it out. According to him, that's not creating a new article, I think it clearly is.--Rusf10 (talk) 08:30, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
@Mendaliv:- Thank you for providing those diffs. They prove that this is not an isolated incident and RAN knew exactly what he was doing. RAN is clearly gaming the system and going forward he should be banned from creating redirects too.--Rusf10 (talk) 16:51, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
@Lankiveil:I object to only a one month block, due to the fact that RAN clearly knew what he was doing and was gaming the system. It's not like this was an isolated incident,Mendaliv provided evidence that he did this multiple times. This is his MO, he's always pushing the boundaries. Just like he tried to do with replacing deleted articles with wikidata entries, see Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style#RfC: Linking to wikidata I support a longer block as per User:Sandstein, User:Timotheus Canens, & User:Seraphimblade.--Rusf10 (talk) 03:45, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
@Lankiveil:, okay I see what you're saying and I trust you and User:GoldenRing will use good judgement, but I just want to see if the other admins agree with the length of the block or not. Another question, will any of these three pages RAN created be deleted? As per the arbitration case "The article or draft article may be speedily deleted under criterion G5 by any administrator." Or do I need to take them to AfD?--Rusf10 (talk) 04:20, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
@Francis Schonken, JFG, Lankiveil, and SoWhy:- I think its okay to return the articles to a redirect, however the previous revisions still should be deleted. I can envision RAN coming back after his block and just reverting the pages again to his preferred version and then saying I didn't create an article, I just reverted. I say delete the articles and if another user wants them, they can request the deleted version and recreate it themselves with the understanding that they will take full responsibility for its content.--Rusf10 (talk) 12:28, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
@Beyond My Ken:Wow! I wasn't even aware of this discussion [31]. The exact thing RAN did here was discussed, this is even more proof he knew exactly what he was doing. His behavior is inexcusable. A ban beyond one month is definitely called for here, I like Sandstein's suggestion of six months too.--Rusf10 (talk) 05:59, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
Notification of the user against whom enforcement is requested 


Discussion concerning Richard Arthur Norton (1958- )[edit]

Statements must be made in separate sections. They may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs, except by permission of a reviewing administrator.
Administrators may remove or shorten noncompliant statements. Disruptive contributions may result in blocks.

Statement by Norton[edit]

I made a valid redirect to the larger article. I created content in an existing article. Another editor trimmed the large block. I split the information from an existing article into a redirect in one edit, so not undue. No new article was created with new content, information was migrated to the list from an existing article in a valid article split. --RAN (talk) 02:51, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Beyond My Ken[edit]

In his statement, just above, Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) appears to want to have things both ways. He is forbidden by his sanctions to create articles, but he creates redirects on the theory -- which I believe is justified -- that a redirect is not an article. However, he also wants to be allowed to convert those redirects into articles under the theory that in doing so he is not creating an article, simply adding information to an existing article (the redirect). Well, it can't be both things at the same time. Either the redirect is or isn't an article. If a redirect is an article, then RAN routinely violates his sanctions when he creates redirects (i.e. articles). If it isn't an article, then making it into an article is creating an article where none existed before. Beyond My Ken (talk) 05:59, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Concerning DHeyward's complaint: it is not the job of admins at AE to alter or overrule editorial sanctions applied by ArbCom, but instead their purpose is to adjudicate any reported violations of those sanctions, which -- at least in my analysis --this one clearly is. Thus, determining that RAN's action did or did not harm Wikipedia is outside the proper purview of AE, and DHeyward's "which actions hurt the project" is something of a strawman -- although one can say with some certainty that editors not following their sanctions inherently harms the project by undermining the authority of ArbCom to place sanctions, by encouraging other editors to decide that they, too, do not have to follow their sanctions, and by devaluing the work of those who edit without being sanctioned. Beyond My Ken (talk) 08:08, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
Question to Awilley - Just to clear up an ambiguity, does your query "Am I missing anything" means "Do I have all the facts on this matter?", or does it mean "What am I missing here that qualifies this as a violation of a sanction?" Beyond My Ken (talk) 08:11, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
I'd like to point out that RAN has a history of gaming and violating his sanctions:
RAN is no innocent, he's well aware of his sanctions and what they mean, having participated in most of the discussions about them. There's no possibility that the current incidents were slip-ups, mere mistake, a misunderstanding or anything other then deliberate attempts to slip under the radar to do what he knows he's not supposed to do.
The 1 month ban already imposed on RAN is the minimum required by his sanctions, but I agree with Sandstein that the clearly deliberate nature of the violations requires more than that. The six months suggested by Sandstein would seem appropriate, if an indef block for an editor who has been problematic for many years now - even more then is indicated above, back to 2008, at least - isn't under consideration, which I suggest it should be. Beyond My Ken (talk) 05:41, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by DHeyward[edit]

No complaint has merit on process alone. Per NOtBURO, which actions hurt the project? I see no diffs presented that hurt the project and without them, sanctions of any kind are unwarranted. --DHeyward (talk) 07:10, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Mendaliv[edit]

BMK has it right here:

  • The page "Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey" was created as a redirect by RAN.
  • The page "Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey" ceased to be a redirect when RAN next edited it.
  • The page "Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey" was an article at the time of the second edit, and no other editors edited it in the meantime.

If creating redirects is fine, then replacing a redirect with content is creating an article. If replacing redirects with content is fine, then creating a redirect is creating an article. Thus, RAN created an article, though we can't say for certain whether it was at the first or second edit.

As to the comment by DHeyward, I believe the reviewing admins have no discretion not to block RAN once it's determined he's created an article.

Bonus: Resolving a possible ambiguity in the language of the remedy and enforcement provisions
  • Remedy 2.3 (resulting from the Oct 2015 amendment): Any article or draft article created contrary to this restriction will result in a block, initially of at least one month and then proceeding per the enforcement provisions.
  • Enforcement: Should any user subject to a restriction in this case violate that restriction, that user may be blocked, initially for up to one month, and then with blocks increasing in duration to a maximum of one year . . . .

At the very least, it's clear that the first violation under Remedy 2.3 must result in a block. Subsequent violations, it is technically ambiguous, and "then proceeding per the enforcement provisions" could mean that, after the first violation, enforcement is per what the enforcement provision says, which gives discretion not to block. However, the placement of a comma after "will result in a block" can indicate that this phrase is syntactically connected to "proceeding per the enforcement provisions". Logically, it strikes me as pretty clear the Committee meant the "proceeding per" to refer to the duration rather than implying a flow-chart like movement.

Another wrinkle: The last logged action in the RAN case was in March 2014, prior to the enactment of Remedy 2.3. As such, arguably, the current request is for the very first sanction under that remedy, which is unquestionably mandatory. Of course, the operative language is "of at least one month". That is, it can be more, according to the reviewing admins' discretion.

The TL;DR is that even if the result is that whether to block or how much to block is per the reviewing admins' discretion, it doesn't mean they need a compelling reason for that decision. Just that they can't abuse their discretion when making that decision. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 08:44, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Update: On a hunch, I ran a search of RAN's contribs with the tag filter, mw-removed-redirect, which displays all contribs where he removed a redirect from a page. There were six instances of this tag in total. While there were some innocuous cases, there were also ones that were probably violations of the remedy in the same way as Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey:

I don't think we're in "this was a one-time error of judgment" territory anymore. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 10:35, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

  • @Bishonen and Dennis Brown: I won't say I'm not sympathetic; I think, in general, admins carrying out actions should have some discretion to consider something to be inconsequential. Part of the problem is the way the remedy is written (and as Thryduulf has made abundantly clear, this was intentional and designed such that enforcement would be nondiscretionary). I understand that normally AE is where we deal with requests for applying DS, and as such the practices here are such that reviewing admins will try to come up with creative ways of preventing further disruption. But this isn't one of those cases, and as such the procedure is different. With regard to the ambiguity concern I noted above, had there been any actual grumbling about whether the inconsistent phrasing was intentional or a scrivener's error, I would have suggested that this be referred to ARCA on something similar to a "certified question" process; that is, someone would open an ARCA asking only whether blocking under the remedy was mandatory if there was a consensus that there was a violation.
    Again, I'm not unsympathetic. As I grumbled quite vocally yesterday at AC/N in regards to a community-imposed restriction that would supposedly automatically kick in were the editor in question unblocked, I believe that prospective/conditional sanctions are generally a bad idea and should be considered suggestions. However, when the sanction is crafted by the Committee after deliberation and is voted on by a quorum of arbitrators, I believe the usual concerns I have regarding such "consensus preempting" are significantly less than with an AN/ANI discussion. My suggestion would be, if RAN believes the mandatory nature of the block is unfair along these lines, he should immediately open an ARCA asking for the Committee to reconsider. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 18:21, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by SN54129[edit]

Mendaliv's diffs are pretty convclusive on what the curent affair hinges on, viz. whether RAN's actions were accidental and isolated, or deliberate and ubiquitous. For the future, it might be worth considering the extension of the current topic-ban (or a re-definition) to include the creation of redirects as well as articles. If nothing else, it would remove the temptation to then expand the redirect into an article, which, it would seem, is so strong. >SerialNumber54129...speculates 13:10, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Kingsindian[edit]

This is the first time I have heard of a provision that says a user must be blocked for a violation. Such a provision makes a mockery of "discretionary sanctions", which are supposed to be, um, discretionary.

Here's what happened here. There was an edge case which was used (or abused, depending on one's POV) by RAN. His last violation was 4 years ago. There was no attempt to discuss this matter with RAN prior to coming here. No damage happened to the encyclopedia.

Instead of draconian months-long sentences, it would be better to warn them that this loophole cannot be exploited in the future, and let it go. Kingsindian   14:34, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

@Thryduulf: My mistake about the DS part, however that just shifts the question elsewhere. Why did ArbCom phrase its motion as "must be blocked", which is highly unusual, to say the least? The original remedy uses a standard language of a topic ban. Violating a topic ban does not result in a "must be blocked no matter what" situation. In the discussion, I see no Arb even commenting on this very unusual provision.

The whole situation is absurd. I have enough experience with ArbCom to know that they're capable of writing remedies which nobody understands, not even they. I call for IAR and NOTBURO here, and a swift change in the absurd wording. Kingsindian   16:27, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

@Thryduulf: Let us separate out two things. First: what must be done, and second: what, in your opinion, should be done. You wrote the very unusual remedy saying that the block must be instituted. I don't think that was wise, but that's beside the point. I realize that Arbs can do whatever they want, but I leave it to any normal person to decide if a violation 4 years after the last sanction should result in an unconditional 1 month block. I think it is self-evidently absurd, but I won't argue the point.

As for the "spirit" of the motion, the motion said that unless RAN cleans up their mess, their topic ban won't be lifted. They haven't, and it hasn't. Besides that, you can't really control what any editor does on Wikipedia (except banning them completely). If the motion's intention was to force RAN to do nothing except clean up their mess, then it should have been written directly. I think that we can conclude that many years after the fact, the desired behavior will not happen. This situation should be accepted, rather than harassing RAN over unrelated things into doing something he clearly doesn't want to do. Kingsindian   17:03, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by JFG[edit]

Irrespective of the circumstances leading to creation of those pages by a user who was supposed not to, the articles are well-sourced and inherently encyclopedic. They would surely survive AfD, hence should not be deleted for administrative reasons (WP:CSD#G5 was suggested). We are not a bureaucracy. — JFG talk 04:55, 5 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Francis[edit]

Reasoning: G5 delete is not mandated, but returning to a redirect seems best (per SoWhy and others). Per the original RAN case, any editor may assume responsibility for content created by RAN: I did so by placing it in the Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey article, where I expect it to be edited (especially trimmed) mercilessly and/or to be split out again (e.g. to Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey). I leave that responsibility to others (e.g. JFG feel free to adopt the content created by RAN, by undoing all my edits to both Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey and Sheriff of Monmouth County, New Jersey – I'd keep a somewhat longer "summary" of the Sheriff article at the Sheriff section in the Monmouth County article though, than the merely two sentences that used to be there) while the content intricacies are a bit far out of my league. It is also possible to revert this edit by RAN where he decimated the Sheriff section in the Monmouth County article, replacing the bulk of its content by a {{See}} link to their newly created article (e.g. Rusf10, if you'd feel the extended content I now placed there is too extended it is perfectly possible to return the content of that section to the state before RAN messed with it). AFAICS none of these actions, nor the ones I did on these two articles, nor the ones I proposed or suggested, need admin (and even less AE) intervention: regular editing processes can take over from here. --Francis Schonken (talk) 07:54, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
@Rusf10: Re. "I can envision RAN coming back after his block and just reverting the pages again to his preferred version ... " – I understand. Reasonably, RAN could support the split by saying so at Talk:Monmouth County, New Jersey (if nobody performed the split before they come out of their block). The scenario you portray may:
  1. happen before anyone else converted the redirect to an article: in that case RAN is up for an incremental block I suppose.
  2. happen after someone else converted the redirect to an article: nothing to be done at AE I suppose (unless RAN fell short of any other remedies of their ArbCom case in the process). As for the extent of the Sheriff-related content in both articles, use normal methods to come to an agreement. If you need help arranging, trimming or extending content, just ask me or, preferably, someone more versed in this type of content. If needed, after trying other routes, escalate to ArbCom.
In other words, I suppose I understand that admins don't want to overreach in this AE procedure. Whether or not the current redirect is deleted makes little difference IMHO, anyone could pick the content up from the (revision history) of the article where I moved it. Also taking the current redirect to WP:RfD would be possible: I suppose, however, that most admins would consider a delete merely as a result of this AE procedure (i.e. without taking other steps) as inactionable. --Francis Schonken (talk) 12:56, 5 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Justlettersandnumbers[edit]

I'm not familiar with the history here, and this may not be the right place to raise this anyway. At a very quick first glance, what I see is:

That's in a few minutes of looking. Those three problems are all quite easily fixed, but they raise serious concerns that all of RAN's edits since the CCI was opened in 2011 (of which there seem to be around 60000) may also need to be scrutinised. It looks as if admins should consider whether he should be blocked indefinitely to prevent the possibility of any further damage to the project. Justlettersandnumbers (talk) 01:44, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by (username)[edit]

Result concerning Richard Arthur Norton (1958- )[edit]

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.
  • The request has merit. Creating a redirect and then making this redirect into an article is creating an article. I would impose a two-month block, doubling the previous block duration. Sandstein 06:59, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • Based on Mendaliv's evidence, I'm now considering imposing a six-month block. The evidence shows that Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) has repeatedly violated his restriction, and particularly in the case of Sáenz his conduct reflects some of the reasons why the restriction was imposed: this is the state he left the article he created in, which is not only a copyvio for copypasting Wikipedia content without attribution, but is also badly formatted and contains weird timestamps. Sandstein 10:50, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • Let me get this straight. RAN creates a redirect on December 18, 2017 [33]. On February 2, 2018 he adds a new section to the target article and makes many edits to it. [34] On February 3 another user makes some minor formatting changes to the section. [35] 13 hours later RAN cuts the new section out of the article and pastes it to populate the redirect. [36] Am I missing anything? ~Awilley (talk) 07:52, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
    • Based on the research by Mendaliv above and the clarifications by Thryduulf below I think the one-month block is the best path forward, although I agree with Bish about mandated sanctions. I oppose a ban on the creation of redirects as they are harmless and have nothing to do with the copyvios that got RAN here in the first place. I think the block will be sufficient warinng that gaming the system by turning redirects into articles is inappropriate and will result in further blocks. ~Awilley (talk) 18:40, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • This looks an obvious violation and, per Mendaliv, the remedy appears to require a one month block. My gut feeling is to say, "don't do it again," but is the option open to us? GoldenRing (talk) 09:12, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I agree with Sandstein that Mendaliv's evidence shows RAN obviously circumventing his restriction. A long block is in order. GoldenRing (talk) 13:04, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • This is an obvious violation. A block would be justified, but I am wondering if we need to do a two week block plus a editing ban for creating redirects, since that is what got us here. I think this is within our authority and doesn't require ARCA. This would effectively prevent him from creating any page in main space and would be easy to enforce and addresses the long term problem more effectively. Dennis Brown - 14:01, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • What would be the authority for a ban on creating redirects? Also, as noted by Mendaliv above, it appears we are required to impose at least a one-moth block. Sandstein 15:04, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • And even if it were authorized, a redirect ban would be the wrong choice. Creating redirects, as such, is not the problem here. Creating articles is. And that is already banned. Sandstein 15:20, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • The authority is that AE gives us the freedom to choose a sanction that best prevents disruption, so by my estimation, we are absolutely authorized to use that as a sanction. A ban on redirects could have been done at ANI for that matter. I get why there might be some resistance, but my goal is to prevent the restrictions from being gamed, which looks to be the case here. Dennis Brown - 17:43, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • That is not strictly true. Please read the Enforcement provision of the applicable case. That is what applies to arbitration enforcement related to this restriction. ~ Rob13Talk 20:07, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • Reading it strictly, I see what you mean. It does seem that Arb has hamstrung us into only using blocks as a sanction, which is a pity as I don't feel that is the best solution and I'm not alone in this. This is obviously a situation that Arb did not foresee, and yet here we are. That said, there is an obvious violation, and Sandstein's suggestion of a two month block, twice the previous, would be the only available sanction. Or we could dismiss it, but we don't really have any other options. Dennis Brown - 21:04, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • Per WP:NOTPUNITIVE, I'm in favour of just an indefinite ban from creating redirects, plus a warning to the user that any further attempt to game any of his bans will result in a long block. But if that's not viewed favorably, I'll support Dennis's suggestion as my second option. Bishonen | talk 14:26, 4 February 2018 (UTC).
GoldenRing has now imposed a one-month block. We may end up there, but it should preferably not be done while we're still talking, and I particularly don't think it should be done per Thryduulf's reasoning. The ArbCom of 2015, as voiced by Thryduulf, wrote in this motion that "Any article or draft article created contrary to this restriction will result in a block" (my italics), and I see Kingsindian protesting above against this unusual wording. It's not just unusual, it also goes beyond ArbCom's remit, if it's intended the way it sounds, i. e. if it's intended to order admins to perform such a block. ArbCom can't tell admins what to do, they have to ask nicely. The fact that no other arb protested, as Thryduulf mentions below, doesn't make the motion the Stone Tablets, and it's not correct that we (=uninvolved admins here, or indeed any other admins) have 'no alternative but to impose a 1 month block'. Admins always have an alternative. They can do nothing, for instance, or they can impose a milder sanction. Bishonen | talk 17:52, 4 February 2018 (UTC).
Thryduulf, you don't seem to be answering my main point, which was that ArbCom don't have the power to tell admins what to do. (I did use the word "unusual", but that was by way of introduction, linking my own point with Kingsindian's.) In that regard, it doesn't matter how the motion was worded; if it attempts to direct (or, as Sandstein puts it, attempts to "require") admins to perform this or that action, it's void, because ArbCom can't do that. Bishonen | talk 20:03, 4 February 2018 (UTC).
  • As one of the people on the Arbitration Committee when the October 2015 amendment was passed, my recollection of the intention was:
    • A first violation of the restriction would result in a 1 month block.
    • Subsequent violations would proceed onwards from that with blocks increasing in duration from the 1 month starting point.
    From memory, it is well established that a redirect is not an article and that a prohibition on creating articles does not equal a prohibition on creating articles (or vice versa) unless explicitly noted otherwise. Again from memory, it is equally the case that changing a redirect into an article is creating an article. Moving text from one Wikipedia article to a new page, even if that is over a redirect, is creating a new article.
    Whether a disambiguation page is an article or not is a much greyer area, and one that we definitely did not consider when drafting this restriction.
    Given these I do not see any alternative but to impose a 1 month block, even though we did not foresee the restriction being gamed in this way.
    I do not think that AE has the authority to impose a ban on redirect creation, that would need to come from either AN/I or ARCA (and any restriction placed at the former that is similar to or interacts with restrictions placed by arbcom should be noted on the talk page of his case so it's clear if/when arbcom next looks at the case). FWIW though I don't see a need to ban him from redirect creation unless there is a problem with them as redirects. He is already banned from creating articles, and changing a redirect to an article is creating an article. I can see value in clarifying whether a disambiguation page and/or set index is an article for the purposes of the restriction (I don't have a firm opinion at the moment when it either does or should), which unless anyone knows of clear precedent will have to come from ARCA. Thryduulf (talk) 15:42, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
    @Kingsindian: Discretionary sanctions are indeed supposed to be discretionary, but these are not discretionary sanctions. These are specific restrictions placed on a specific user directly by the arbitration committee, discretionary sanctions are an authorisation for administrators to place restrictions, at their discretion, in relation to a specified topic area - neither the nature of the restriction nor the user(s) they are applied to are specified by the committee. Thryduulf (talk) 15:50, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
    @Kingsindian: Looking back at my emails from the time, it seems I was the one to draft the remedy and I explicitly flagged it up to other arbitators in a message to the arbcom mailing list at the time of proposing the motion: "I've noted the enforcement of the two slightly differently, as (draft) article creation is always a deliberate act and so there should be no discretion about whether to block or not, the minimum duration is the length of his most recent one. It is however possible to accidentally move something to the wrong namespace, so I have deliberately left violations of that as "may" not "will" be blocked." [quoting my own words so there are no confidentiality, or privacy etc implications] There were following emails in the email thread I quote from but there was no comment about this, there was also no comment about it on-wiki from anybody. Yes it's unusual but entire point of the amendment was to force RAN to actually abide by the restrictions placed on him, or as Seraphimblade put it "The spirit (if not the letter) of the original ruling was that RAN was to help clean up the mess, that being, substantially work on the CCI, before returning to such activity, and that it would be wise for him to stay well clear of the line when it comes to copyright and nonfree material, not try to dance right along it."[37] Yet here were are again 2½ years later and he still hasn't got the point - regardless of whether it's bureaucracy or not I think a 1 month block is entirely justified on the merits of his actions. Thryduulf (talk) 16:47, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
    @Kingsindian: The key point is that RAN was prohibited from creating new articles with no exceptions, unless and until his mess was cleared up, because by creating new articles he is making more mess. Whether you like it or not, whether you agree with it or not, the "must" nature of the restriction was put in place for the reasons I quoted - it was not thought possible to accidentally breach them (and I still don't think it is possible). For that reason I think that just because it has been 2½ years (not 4) since then is irrelevant. Thryduulf (talk) 18:46, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • @Bishonen: yes the "must" is unusual, but I've explained the reasons for it and it wasn't just arbs that didn't object, nobody objected despite plenty of opportunity at the time to do so. I also think that even if it wasn't phrased as a "must" that a 1-month block is justified for what is clearly an intentional gaming of the restrictions. Nothing in the wording permits creating any sort of article by any means. Also, AE does not have the remit to impose a ban from creating redirects in this case, and I don't think one would be justified even if it were. Thryduulf (talk) 18:46, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
    @Bishonen: arbcom has the power to say how things should be enforced (blocks, ibans, G5, etc, etc), admins have the power to choose whether a sanction needs enforcing or not. In this case the sanction clearly says it is to be enforced with blocks starting at 1 month - i.e. if it is a violation then the enforcement for that violation is a block of 1 month or longer. The 1 month was not arbitrarily chosen - it's based on the length of his preceding block. There is no authority being exceeded here. And as I've said before, a 1 month block for this egregious violation is clearly warrented regardless of whether arbcom or AE chose that. Thryduulf (talk) 16:31, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I don't think we have the authority here to impose or modify a topic ban as nothing here is covered by discretionary sanctions. The language of the remedy is very clear and I find Thryduulf's reasoning above persuasive. I have therefore blocked Richard Arthur Norton (1958- ) for one month. GoldenRing (talk) 17:04, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I object. Please keep this section open for a bit longer, as I'd like to respond to Thryduulf. We should try to form a consensus here. Bishonen | talk 17:33, 4 February 2018 (UTC).
  • By all means discuss further. I'll be a bit on-and-off this evening UTC but will try to check in every now and then. GoldenRing (talk) 17:41, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
I've posted in my own section above. Bishonen | talk 17:52, 4 February 2018 (UTC).
  • This is an interesting case. It does seem like gaming (creating a redirect, then making the same redirect into an article is functionally the same as creating an article, even if the text of the new article is drawn mostly from other articles). But this was not clearly spelled out. I agree with Bishonen that an indefinite ban from creating redirects, plus a warning to RAN that doing the same thing in the future will result in blocks, is sufficient. Neutralitytalk 17:53, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • The one-month block was the minimum required by the remedy. If anything, it should have been longer, given the repeated misconduct and the user's response here. This is not discretionary sanctions, so we do not have discretion to invent any other sanction. Sandstein 19:04, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I still agree with Sandstein on process here. What usually "gives us the freedom to choose a sanction that best prevents disruption" at AE is discretionary sanctions; no DS are authorised here. Any ban imposed here would be immediately appealable as lacking authority. Only the community (at AN/ANI) or the committee (likely at ARCA) can impose a new ban or modify the ban here. And, per Thryduulf and Mendaliv's evidence, RAN has clearly been gaming the restriction in trivial ways. The block is richly merited. Because of the brazenness of it, I sort of agree with Sandstein that it should have been longer, but the month is what the committee mandated in the remedy. And though there is a history of breaking the restriction logged at the case page, that history is from before the amendment that mandates the one month block - so I think one month is the right duration here. GoldenRing (talk) 20:47, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • On the meta question: per WP:ARBAE#Common sense in enforcement, a consensus of uninvolved administrators have the authority to close a report with no action on the ground that exceptional circumstances are present, which would make the imposition of a sanction inappropriate. That said, I do not perceive any such exceptional circumstance in this case.

    The motion at issue provides that the initial block is to be for "at least one month" with no cap. I agree with Sandstein that this kind of obvious gaming should result in a longer block duration. AE doesn't have the authority to impose a redirect ban directly, but it might be imposable as an unblock condition; however, I don't see that as useful. The problem is RAN turning redirects into articles. Whether those redirects were created by him or by others is immaterial. T. Canens (talk) 21:24, 4 February 2018 (UTC)

  • As to content inserted by RAN in violation of the restriction, given the reason for the sanction my view is that it should be assumed to contain copyright violations (and hence subject to deletion) unless another editor in good standing is willing to take responsibility for it (including any potential sanctions if the content is, in fact, found to contain a copyright violation). T. Canens (talk) 20:15, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I would agree that the spirit of the sanction imposed was that RAN may not create articles. At least to my view, that would not include redirects, but would include anything more substantial than a redirect, including disambiguation pages and the like. However, I also agree on "having it both ways". If we're agreeing that redirects are not counted as articles, then changing a redirect into something more is creating an article. There's no exception based on where the material came from, the restriction wasn't "may not create articles unless the material used comes from another article". So far as length, I would agree that admins can always decide a block isn't warranted, and can't be forced to act. However, if blocked under the remedy as an AE action, the block must be at least the minimum length. Of course, an admin can block on their own accord for a shorter period of time, it just wouldn't count as an AE block in that case but rather as a normal block. In this case, though, I agree that a month is actually lenient, given the clear gaming. This was not some accidental or hypertechnical violation, it was a clear and deliberate one, and it's not the first one. Seraphimblade Talk to me 21:57, 4 February 2018 (UTC)
  • This is an open and shut violation, and no amount of semantic gymnastics are going to change that. Extending the prohibition on article creation to also encompass redirects might be one solution, but I don't think we have the authority to do that here. We could also use our discretion here to turn a blind eye and close this with no further action, but given RAN's rather colourful history I'm not sure that the exceptional circumstances exist to do that. Support a block of between one to two months, and will close this discussion on that basis next few hours per the emerging consensus above if nobody objects before then. Lankiveil (speak to me) 02:59, 5 February 2018 (UTC).
@Rusf10: I take your point, but on the other hand it is the first violation for a long time. I'd probably have hit harder with the blockhammer as well, but I don't see any compelling reason to pile on the pain beyond what my fellow admin User:Goldenring has already done (I won't object if GR feels it necessary to extend the block a little though). I should note that I intend with the closure to come up with some wording to block off this particular "loophole" for the avoidance of any future doubt. Lankiveil (speak to me) 03:53, 5 February 2018 (UTC).
@Rusf10: You can try nominating themselves for CSD G5 if you like. It might pay to put an explanation in the tag pointing towards the case and to this discussion to assist the admin who assesses them. I'm not in a space right now where I can look at them myself. Lankiveil (speak to me) 04:21, 5 February 2018 (UTC).
Apologies, I got distracted last night and wasn't able to do it. I'll fix it up on my lunch break if nobody else has by then. Lankiveil (speak to me) 23:18, 5 February 2018 (UTC).
  • 1) I agree with the block, the sanction was clear not to create articles, in any way. Saying "but they were redirects before" does not change the fact that there is an article there now where there was none before. 2) @Rusf10 and Lankiveil: I object to G5 being used to handle these articles. The redirects were not in violation of the sanction, so there is no "ban" to allow admins to delete the whole articles. Just revert them to the redirects they were before, which also serves our readers. While I am sympathetic with JFG's argument of WP:NOTBURO, keeping the articles would send the message that violations of sanctions will be tolerated if the content is good enough (of course, articles with significant edits by others are already exempt to G5 and thus also such a revert). Regards SoWhy 06:35, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
    @Rusf10: I don't see that problem. If RAN returns and does that, I'm pretty sure he will be blocked again almost instantly because again, the spirit of the sanction is what's relevant, not the wording. Reverting a redirect back to the article he created is the same as creating the article anew. But if someone else wants to use that content and take responsibility, like Francis said above, they should be able to do so per WP:PRESERVE. Regards SoWhy 13:00, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
  • This is a fairly straightforward one month block. Creating a redirect and then converting it to an article is, effectively, creating an article - it doesn't matter how it's achieved. It would probably be useful to enact a topic ban on creating redirects so we don't end up here again. Black Kite (talk) 23:30, 5 February 2018 (UTC)
    • @Black Kite: see discussion above - AE cannot impose a topic ban (of any sort) in this case, as this is not discretionary sanctions and topic bans were not authorised by arbcom. Also such a topic ban is not needed as the redirects are not problematic as redirects, RAN is already banned from creating articles and the consensus here is clearly that converting a redirect to an article is creating an article - if he does it again he'll be blocked again for longer than a month. Thryduulf (talk) 03:50, 6 February 2018 (UTC)


The indefinite topic ban of TheTimesAreAChanging with respect to the WP:ARBAPDS topic area (post-1932 U.S. politics and closely related people) is reimposed. Any misconduct by others may be reported separately. Sandstein 11:05, 7 February 2018 (UTC)
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.

This request may be declined without further action if insufficient or unclear information is provided in the "Request" section below.
Requests may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs (not counting required information), except by permission of a reviewing administrator.

Request concerning TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

User who is submitting this request for enforcement 
SPECIFICO (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) 19:14, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
User against whom enforcement is requested 
TheTimesAreAChanging (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Search DS alerts: in user talk history • in system log

Sanction or remedy to be enforced
Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/American politics 2 :
  1. 26 January 2018 DS on TheTimesAreAChanging "Please be aware that you are now under probation (supervised editing) in the American politics post-1932 topic area, broadly construed until further notice. If you do not adhere to the standards of WP:BRD and WP:CONSENSUS this sanction will be escalated.
  2. Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/American_politics_2#Edit_warring "Users who engage in multiple reverts of the same content but are careful not to breach the three revert rule are still edit warring."
  3. Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/American_politics_2#Behavioral_standards "Unseemly conduct, such as personal attacks, incivility, assumptions of bad faith, harassment, disruptive point-making, and gaming the system, is prohibited."
  4. Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/American_politics_2#Consensus "Disagreements concerning article content are to be resolved by seeking to build consensus through the use of polite discussion" "editors are expected to participate in the consensus-building process and to carefully consider other editors' views"
Diffs of edits that violate this sanction or remedy, and an explanation how these edits violate it 

The following diffs show TheTimesAreAChanging failing to "adhere to the standards of WP:BRD and WP:CONSENSUS" per his Jan 2018 sanction. Only after his second revert did he go to the talk page, on which there was no consensus for his view, which he continued to edit into the article. See these diffs:

  1. [38]
  2. [39]
  3. [40]
  4. [41].

Diffs giving evidence of incivility or personal attacks, violating ARBAP2 are in the "Additional Comments" section below.

Diffs of previous relevant sanctions, if any 
  1. 26 January 2018 ARBAP2 probation, observe BRD & Consensus
  2. 12 January 2017 Indefinite TBAN from American Politics
  3. 15 January 2017 Socking/TBAN evasion
  4. 16 January 2017 Block violation. Talk page access revoked
If discretionary sanctions are requested, supply evidence that the user is aware of them (see WP:AC/DS#Awareness and alerts)
Additional comments by editor filing complaint 

This user had a rough time during his 2017 TBAN, having been blocked for socking to evade the ban and continuing his abrasive interpersonal relations, e.g. on 14 April 2017. He successfully appealed his earlier TBAN via email to Sandstein here [42]. His promise not to resume his disruptive behavior (whether or not in good faith) has clearly not been fulfilled. Within a couple of weeks, he filed this groundless ANI complaint against me: [43]. That's after promising not to resume his lengthy screeds. He then resumed the pointless and poisonous personal remarks on various article talk pages that resulted in his TBAN. Here are some examples with respect to @Casprings: [44] [45][46] [47] who had filed the AE complaint that resulted in his TBAN, but also with respect to many others, including but not limited to @Volunteer Marek: [48][49][50][51], me [52][53][54], @MelanieN: [55] and [56], and @MjolnirPants: [57].

I think this is pretty straightforward and that the need for a renewed TBAN of some duration is evident.

Notification of the user against whom enforcement is requested 

Notified here.

Discussion concerning TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

Statements must be made in separate sections. They may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs, except by permission of a reviewing administrator.
Administrators may remove or shorten noncompliant statements. Disruptive contributions may result in blocks.

Statement by TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

I made three reverts, not in 24 hours, to an article not under DS. With regard to the underlying content dispute:

SPECIFICO repeatedly and falsely claimed that in a January 31, 2018 statement, Twitter informed 1.4 million Americans that #ReleaseTheMemo is "Russian disinformation." Twitter's actual January 31, 2018 statement—titled "Update on Twitter's Review of the 2016 U.S. Election"—clearly states that Twitter actually notified 1.4 million Americans that they interacted with Russian disinformation "during the [2016] election period" and says nothing about the January 2018 #ReleaseTheMemo hashtag. In fact, the very source cited by SPECIFICO states: "Twitter said in its response that a 'preliminary analysis of available geographical data for Tweets with the hashtag #ReleaseTheMemo ... has not identified any significant activity connected to Russia with respect to tweets posting original content to this hashtag.'" Although in my talk page comments I was careful to assume that this was a good faith mistake, at this point SPECIFICO's tripling down on a plainly inaccurate claim after it has been explained to her seems like deliberate source falsification—if not an outright attempt to bait me—which should be sanctionable. SPECIFICO claims that there is "consensus" for her edits, but the talk page and edit history tell another story: Even editors that originally agreed with her, such as Mr. X ("OK, let's just take it out.") and My very best wishes ("I do not think this is a an obvious misrepresentation, but yes, one can argue this should be excluded from the lead") changed their minds in response to evidence that she was mistaken. (So did BullRangifer, who thanked me for correcting him with my second revert.)

In addition to me, My very best wishes and Sarek of Vulcan also reverted this content in the lead. Under those circumstances, I am not sure why SPECIFICO or anyone else would feel justified in restoring it without consensus, or why my repeatedly reverting it would be the sole problem: The BURDEN is not on those who oppose it to achieve consensus that the content doesn't belong, but rather the opposite. SPECIFICO may argue that Nunes memo should be under DS and that I should therefore voluntarily restrict myself to 1RR. However, if the article was under DS, then SPECIFICO would not have been able to reinstate challenged content without consensus, as she did.

Finally, this edit—in which SPECIFICO confronts me on my own talk page to request sanctions against me (pinging Coffee)—appears to be a violation of SPECIFICO's AE sanction: "You are restricted to only using WP:AE or an uninvolved administrator's talk page to request discretionary sanctions be levied against another editor."TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 19:44, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

Sandstein, Nunes memo (the article this dispute is about) has no DS logged or templated. The edit history shows continuous edit warring by multiple parties, and SPECIFICO reinstated challenged content without consensus. There is no objective criteria by which you could single out my reverts, alone, as sanctionable.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 20:18, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

BTW, I tried to explain that SPECIFICO's claim was false as politely as I could (and all of you can easily confirm its falsehood), but if my responses were excessively uncourteous, then how was SPECIFICO never sanctioned for suggesting that JFG is a "Russian troll"? That's literally the most egregious aspersion I've ever seen on Wikipedia.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 21:47, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

While I do not concede that I, rather than SPECIFICO, am primarily at fault in this case, I will point out the essential reasonableness of My very best wishes's proposal below: Since no-one has produced any diffs to allege that I have caused any "disruption" at any article unrelated to Donald Trump or Russia, it would seem clearly punitive to ban me from any topics unrelated to Donald Trump or Russia.TheTimesAreAChanging (talk) 05:40, 7 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by My very best wishes[edit]

If a topic ban should be issued here, my suggestion would be to limit the ban only by the most recent US history and politics, for example by a couple of last years or starting from US elections in 2016. I do not think editing older subjects by TTAAC would warrant a topic ban. My very best wishes (talk) 04:41, 7 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by (username)[edit]

Result concerning TheTimesAreAChanging[edit]

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.
  • There are indeed matters of concern here. The reported diffs by TheTimesAreAChanging regarding Twitter are prima facie evidence of edit-warring. Whether this material was correctly sourced or not is a content dispute, as TheTimesAreAChanging acknowledges, but since AE disregards content disputes, it is not helpful that almost all of TheTimesAreAChanging's response is about that content dispute. What's also very concerning are the diffs of personal attacks against other editors, which TheTimesAreAChanging does not address in their response. Editors are at all times, and particularly in discretionary sanctions topic areas, required to discuss content, not fellow editors. Repeatedly casting aspersions against the motives, competence, etc. of others, as TheTimesAreAChanging did in the reported diffs, is unacceptable.

    TheTimesAreAChanging is also mistaken in assuming that the article at issue, including Nunes memo, Trump–Russia dossier, Foreign policy of the Donald Trump administration and others, are not "under DS". They are all about current US politics and are therefore within the scope of discretionary sanctions per WP:ARBAPDS.

    Taking into consideration that this conduct occurred after I lifted a previous indefinite American politics topic ban, I intend to reimpose that ban because it appears to be necessary again. I'm leaving this open for a bit to allow others to comment. Sandstein 20:12, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

  • Of course the article falls squarely under post-1932 American politics and so is subject to DS, but I think what he means is that there are no page restrictions imposed and so the article was not subject to 1rr or consensus required - and that is quite true. 4 reverts in a day and a bit is still edit-warring, but it does seem the action was a bit more general than just TTAAC-against-the-world. As for the civility/PA diffs, I think they are all from before the probation was enacted, so probably not fair to sanction on that basis (sorry, I'm on mobile so it's a bit faffy to check - they at least go back some months). You'll know better than me, but I'd be reluctant to impose an indefinite tban on this basis. GoldenRing (talk) 23:19, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
  • The "probation" is immaterial, apart from having been a silly idea in the first place. Everybody who edits DS topics is under probation. And I agree that these edits wouldn't have warranted an indefinite topic ban by themselves, but they do warrant the restoration of one that was lifted with the expectation of improved behavior. As to any misconduct by others, that would need to be examined in a separate report. Sandstein 23:24, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

I also agree with TTAAC that this edit is requesting sanctions using a TP, while carefully avoiding the words "request sanctions". While SPECIFICO's restriction was lifted, I'd be grateful if @NeilN: could take a look into whether this is a current problem. GoldenRing (talk) 23:32, 6 February 2018 (UTC)

  • @GoldenRing: The restriction was put in place because article talk pages were being turned into mini-AE noticeboards. Notification is fine, and while pinging is nibbling on the edge, I wouldn't look twice if another editor did it. I'm not minded to warn or do anything else as I've already said to SPECIFICO that I don't expect calls for sanctions to be made in "unusual places". --NeilN talk to me 23:53, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I know we're not supposed to look at content disputes but I have a hard time just closing my eyes to content and blindly counting reverts. My gut instinct upon inspecting the sentence was that TTAAC was repeatedly removing a sourced statement of fact for POV purposes. However when reading that sentence in the context of the entire paragraph I found it to be a pretty clear case of WP:SYNTH (juxtaposing multiple correct statements to imply something incorrect or not supported in sources). That makes me a bit hesitant to impose a complete topic ban, leaning instead for something like WP:1RR for American Politics. However the overly personal remarks in some of the diffs provided push me back toward a topic ban. ~Awilley (talk) 23:34, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
  • We don't intervene in genuine content disputes, but blatant violations of our content policies is a conduct problem that we can and should look at. Having examined the sentence in context and the cited sources, I'm having difficulty understanding how any reasonable editor could find the removed sentence not to be a case of OR by synthesis. I would either dismiss this request on the ground of unclean hands, or sanction both parties. T. Canens (talk) 23:42, 6 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I have taken into account the comments above. The conduct by TheTimesAreAChanging here is very similar to the conduct that triggered my initial indefinite topic ban, namely, as I put it then, "a generally confrontative rather than collegial approach to editing, in violation of WP:BATTLEGROUND". Accordingly, the topic ban is reimposed. Because the problems at issue appear to be reflective of flaws of character, rather than specific content disagreements about Donald Trump and the Russia affair, I do not limit the ban to these subtopics.

    I do not exclude that there may have been misconduct by others, including with respect to the Twitter content dispute as noted by T. Canens above, but I don't think that any such misconduct has been adequately documented here with diffs and explanations. A separate complaint about this matter can be made (by anybody who is not topic-banned). Sandstein 11:03, 7 February 2018 (UTC)


Clear violation of Wikipedia:Arbitration enforcement log#India-Pakistan_3. 48 hour block. Dennis Brown - 01:06, 13 February 2018 (UTC)
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.

This request may be declined without further action if insufficient or unclear information is provided in the "Request" section below.
Requests may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs (not counting required information), except by permission of a reviewing administrator.

Request concerning TripWire[edit]

User who is submitting this request for enforcement 
MBlaze Lightning (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) 16:53, 12 February 2018 (UTC)
User against whom enforcement is requested 
TripWire (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Search DS alerts: in user talk history • in system log

Sanction or remedy to be enforced
Wikipedia:Arbitration enforcement log#India-Pakistan_3 : A second revert without discussion restriction. A second revert of any edit, however minor, that is done without an explanation on the talk page will lead to an immediate block.
Diffs of edits that violate this sanction or remedy, and an explanation how these edits violate it 
  1. 12:16, 12 February 2018 1st revert
  2. 13:04, 12 February 2018 2nd revert
Diffs of previous relevant sanctions, if any 
  1. Topic banned from all edits related to Pakistani politics and Indian/Pakistani conflicts, for a period of 6 months on 3 July 2015.
  2. Topic banned from all Balochistan related articles on 29 July 2016.
If discretionary sanctions are requested, supply evidence that the user is aware of them (see WP:AC/DS#Awareness and alerts)

[58][59] indicates that he is aware of the editing sanctions placed on Kashmir conflict related articles.

Additional comments by editor filing complaint 

This is a clear violation of the editing sanctions placed on this page by this disruption only account. His first revert[60] was totally inappropriate and unwarranted because I had linked to the SPI casepage in my edit-summary. And again, after I reverted him, he went ahead and restored the edits of a disruptive paid editing sock, which, as WP:PROXYING says, means that he took complete responsibility of the sock edits.

His edit[61] clearly violated WP:LEADSENTENCE, which specifically states that the first sentence should generally match the page title, not to mention that he replaced the phrase "refers to a Jaish-e-Mohammed fidayeen (suicide attack)" with "refers to a Jaish-e-Mohammed attack" in an attempt to whitewash the fact that it was a terror attack. —MBL Talk 16:53, 12 February 2018 (UTC)

Notification of the user against whom enforcement is requested 

Notified here

Discussion concerning TripWire[edit]

Statements must be made in separate sections. They may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs, except by permission of a reviewing administrator.
Administrators may remove or shorten noncompliant statements. Disruptive contributions may result in blocks.

Statement by TripWire[edit]

Statement by Kautilya3[edit]

Indeed, this topic seems to have brought out the good old brashness of this editor. He has also edit-warred about a "See also" entry at 2016 Uri attack [62], [63]. The statutory talk page discussion had this gem: Good try. But no, except from the fact that it was a terrorist attack, they doesnt qualify a connection. Next what? You'd say that as India has accused Pakistan for the attack, that's another similarity to establish a linkage between the two? Going by your understanding, each and every attack should be listed in every other (Indian) terror attack article? This box is enough to establish the çonnection, for now. These editors are beginning to act like they own the Wikipedia and we need to obtain their permission to lift our fingers. It has gotten rather too much now. -- Kautilya3 (talk) 19:01, 12 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by (username)[edit]

Result concerning TripWire[edit]

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.
  • The given example is less of a problem than Kautilya3's example, which leaves zero room for doubt. I don't see a block log, but I don't think a warning is sufficient here. A short block is warranted, and I'm opposed to considering a topic ban instead. I would also note that just because an open SPI has been filed, Blaze Lightning, that isn't flat permission to revert. That is why the first case is weak, as we don't know (and you didn't know) if the IP really is a sock or not, so you are skating on thin ice when reverting material that isn't obviously wrong, or vandalism, etc. That is what makes the initial case weak. As far as his edits violating WP:LEADSENTENCE, that has no place here and is a content issue. We don't deal with content at WP:AE. Dennis Brown - 21:41, 12 February 2018 (UTC)
Looks to be a clear violation of the letter of the sanctions. Since TripWire's block log is clear, a short block, perhaps 48 hours, is all that is warranted. Dennis, could you? --regentspark (comment) 01:02, 13 February 2018 (UTC)

Arbitration enforcement action appeal by Bachcell[edit]

Appeal unanimously declined. Sandstein 18:29, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.
Procedural notes: The rules governing arbitration enforcement appeals are found here. According to the procedures, a "clear, substantial, and active consensus of uninvolved editors" is required to overturn an arbitration enforcement action.

To help determine any such consensus, involved editors may make brief statements in separate sections but should not edit the section for discussion among uninvolved editors. Editors are normally considered involved if they are in a current dispute with the sanctioning or sanctioned editor, or have taken part in disputes (if any) related to the contested enforcement action. Administrators having taken administrative actions are not normally considered involved for this reason alone (see WP:UNINVOLVED).

Appealing user 
Bachcell (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)
Sanction being appealed 
48 hour block, reset of topic ban [64]
Administrator imposing the sanction 
NeilN (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA)
Notification of that administrator 
Copied from [65] --NeilN talk to me 16:54, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Bachcell[edit]

Why was I blocked I only informed an editor about an article without actually adding any content. So I can't even add comments on another page about a woman whose article was deleted but is now facing terrorist charges? I could understand extending the topic block, but why is it so harmful that it justifies a complete block? How can there be any harm in just mentioning the existence of an article title?

Statement by NeilN[edit]

The topic ban was actually a fairly narrow one, a "three month topic ban from all BLP edits on subjects related to terrorism". This edit violated it. Given they've done no other editing since the topic ban was imposed, I think a 48 hour block and extension of the topic ban is rather lenient. --NeilN talk to me 17:03, 15 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by (involved editor 1)[edit]

Statement by (involved editor 2)[edit]

Discussion among uninvolved editors about the appeal by Bachcell[edit]

Result of the appeal by Bachcell[edit]

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.
  • To me, it looks like a clear violation of the topic ban against BLP edits involving terrorism. The block should stand.--SarekOfVulcan (talk) 17:01, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I agree with SarekOfVulcan and note that I have not assessed the validity of the topic ban as such because it is not contested. Sandstein 17:15, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
  • The purpose of Bachcell's topic ban (from BLP edits involving terrorism) was to keep them away from the intersection of BLP subjects and terrorism. As such, their recent edit at User talk:Geo Swan did not harmonize with the purpose of their ban, even if their edit did not directly change a BLP article. I support their 48-hour block and the three-month ban extension, so would decline this appeal. They were also bending the rules in their December 2017 post about a possible terrorist connection for an arrested person named Jesus Fabian Gonzalez, though nobody noticed this ban violation at the time. Their comment included the phrase "..suggesting a political agenda similar to efforts to remove or minimize actual terrorist attacks." EdJohnston (talk) 17:37, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
  • A topic ban means to stay away from the subject altogether. No discussing it, no "informing" people about it. This was a clear violation of the topic ban and the sanction for it was appropriate. Seraphimblade Talk to me 17:52, 15 February 2018 (UTC)
  • Textbook violation. There really is no wiggle room on this one, and a 48 hour block is very reasonable. Resetting the tban clock is perfectly within discretion as well. To me, the sanction was right down the center of what we would expect an admin to do. I would decline the appeal. Dennis Brown - 18:11, 15 February 2018 (UTC)


Hyper9 is indefinitely topic banned from all Wikipedia pages and discussions connected with Indian history including languages/linguistic history, and Nagadeepa is indefinitely topic banned from all Wikipedia pages and discussions connected with with Indian languages. Both editors are encouraged to appeal the sanction no sooner than six months from now, with evidence that they have contributed constructively in other parts of Wikipedia or in our sister projects in the meantime. Such appeals are likely to be viewed favorably. Bishonen | talk 19:25, 26 February 2018 (UTC).
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.

Request concerning Hyper9[edit]

User who is submitting this request for enforcement 
Nagadeepa (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) 15:48, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
User against whom enforcement is requested 
Hyper9 (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log)

Search DS alerts: in user talk history • in system log

Sanction or remedy to be enforced
Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/India-Pakistan#Standard discretionary sanctions

To ban Hyper9 from editing the Malayalam page (and other Indian history pages) where he has been propagating fringe theories not widely accepted by most scholars. Hyper9 has also been repeatedly deleting accurately referenced widely accepted views on the history of the Malayalam language. He has also been brazenly distorting the following accurate source and completely misinterpreting it to suit his fringe theories:

Finally, he has refused to engage in dispute resolution procedures on spurious grounds:

I note that this not a new problem and he has been banned in the past for similar disruptive behaviour.

Diffs of edits that violate this sanction or remedy, and an explanation how these edits violate it 
  1. - 18:38, 12 February 2018‎ Accurate history of Malayalam language with scientific references. Hyper9 has consistently been deleting these referenced edits of mine based on the work of reputed linguists and historians which jettison the theory that Malayalam had an independent origin from Tamil.
  1. 16/2/18 14:47 This is the current version of the page where Hyper9 has ensured that a biased and fringe history of the Malayalam language is left unchallenged.

A full argument between Hyper9 and two other editors Cpt.a.haddock and me Nagadeepa can be seen in the talk page. Anyone who reads the whole exchange and particularly the research article by S.V Shanmugam (which I have quoted from extensively in the talk section) can see that Hyper9 has been distorting this source and is being disruptive and obstructive.

Diffs of previous relevant sanctions, if any 
  1. [66] Hyper9 was previously banned on 7th July 2017 from all articles related to Indian history for the exact same reasons that I am submitting this request.
If discretionary sanctions are requested, supply evidence that the user is aware of them (see WP:AC/DS#Awareness and alerts)
  • Mentioned by name in the Arbitration Committee's Final Decision linked to above.
  • Previously blocked as a discretionary sanction for conduct in the area of conflict, see the block log linked to above.
  • Previously given a discretionary sanction for conduct in the area of conflict on [67] (7/7/17) by SpacemanSpiff (talk · contribs). @SpacemanSpiff: @Doug Weller:
  • Alerted about discretionary sanctions in the area of conflict in the last twelve months, see the system log linked to above.
  • Gave an alert about discretionary sanctions in the area of conflict in the last twelve months, on [68] 7/7/17.
  • Participated in an arbitration request or enforcement procedure about the area of conflict in the last twelve months, on [69].

Additional comments by editor filing complaint 

Apologies for not attaching correct diff links earlier. I am new to wikipedia editing. I think this is what is requested as a 'diff': Nagadeepa (talk) 18:23, 16 February 2018 (UTC)-->

Notification of the user against whom enforcement is requested

— Preceding unsigned comment added by Nagadeepa (talkcontribs) 18:23, 16 February 2018 (UTC)

Discussion concerning Hyper9[edit]

Statements must be made in separate sections. They may not exceed 500 words and 20 diffs, except by permission of a reviewing administrator.
Administrators may remove or shorten noncompliant statements. Disruptive contributions may result in blocks.

Statement by Hyper9[edit]

The article under dispute has a problematic regional history to it. It is therefore understandable that it can be controversial - but that is true for a lot of other topics as well. I have searched for sources for these pages and all of the content that I have added are from reputed and estabilshed sources. I have also addressed this filing editor properly, despite his abuses, incivility (I have already been called - 'dishonest', 'charlatan', 'madman' on WP by this editor) and a series of incoherent arguments on the Talk:Malayalam page. Yet, no action has been taken against this editor.

Not only this, this other editor was never interested in a discussion, but after one response from me, went ahead and opened a DRN on 10th Feb. The response after which this editor raised the DRN can be viewed here - and only highlights their unwillingness for discussion - (Only the bottom part where I have signed off is my contribution)

This editor, who has filed this complaint, has been resorting to all sorts of tactics to get the version of the page that he wants without any discussion on the Talk:Malayalam page. The first action that he did is to file a DRN even before we had any serious discussion. I would like to point out I have made exactly 5 responses to this editor, which can be viewed here - 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

I have been extremely polite and restrained in my responses in this stint - and if there is something that the WP administrators would point out as inadmissible in my replies above, I would be surprised. In my previous experience, the Appeal procedure to a ban request on me did not even allow me to respond to accusations. In this instance, I do hope that my case would be considered more carefully by the Admins. I have contributed significantly to improving these pages as any editor who will examine these pages can tell and much of the sources that I had added in my previous Enforcement case have not been removed - even after the disputing editor cross-checked them. Thanks. Hyper9 (talk) 21:55, 17 February 2018 (UTC)

User:EdJohnston, User:Dennis_Brown, User:Sandstein, User:RegentsPark - It would have been fair if you could have at least waited for me to provide a First response before arriving at conclusions. Also, to base the present dispute on any previous dispute is to fail to see what is going on now. I am eager to be shown anything that amounts to a transgression in any of my edits and I have been extremely patient in dealing with this filing editor. This filing editor begins their edits on February 8th, 2018 and by February 9th-10th - they file DRN cases thinking that it is some form of 3rd party judgement. This clearly indicates that they were never interested in resolving the dispute through discussion. They have in fact, been trying to use such blocking mechanisms from the beginning - knowing that they can harp about how I was banned previously (which is a whole different story on a different page Chera_dynasty). The discussion on this page had been in fact settled by me and the other disputing editor with a consensus DRN version and can be viewed here -
In the lede on this page Malayalam, the portion on origins has been made neutral to show the existence of Two views after all this effort by me. There is no need for me to sit and take all these attacks by these other editors if there wasn't any substance to it. All these editors including the previous ones have been trying to push the first view in that origin portion all this while. In fact, before I edited this page, all these disputing editors sat on this page without allowing for the second view to be expressed at all. It is in attempting to neutralise this bias that I have had to do research and add good sources and have been the subject to all these attacks. I dare say that it would be patently unfair as responsible WP Admins if you do not look at my responses more carefully and the nature of the disruptive behaviour and personal attacks by this other editor. If you can then genuinely provide any conclusive examples or reasons why such a drastic action such as a ban on me is warranted, I would accept it willingly. Hyper9 (talk) 09:26, 18 February 2018 (UTC)
Second Statement by Hyper9[edit]

I am surprised to know now that it was this same editor who tried to edit Talk:Malayalam using an anonymous IP earlier. There was no attempt by this editor to clarify that it was them earlier, which is obviously some form of deception. User:Francis_Schonken: As I have mentioned somewhere in the talk pages, I am perfectly willing to take part in any process for dispute resolution. I have done so successfully in the past and I have shown that I can maintain decorum.

In my defence, I did not know that the 1st DRN case would be closed down because I requested an apology (which this other editor has still not been decent enough to provide). I was under the impression that there would be an apology (as I have done in the past) and we would carry on into the main discussion. Despite this having happened, in the 2nd DRN case, this editor opens a case using words such as "madman" in their opening statement. Obviously, this editor is not interested in having a discussion purely on content as a DRN case ought to be. I must point out that it would be ridiculous if the one editor can launch personal attacks in every alternate sentence in a moderated discussion - and the other editor has to focus on content only. If anything, I have been patient with this immaturity and not responded similarly, but have only asked for such statements to be deleted or an apology given. Hyper9 (talk) 10:13, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

User:Francis_Schonken - For whatever its worth, in answer to your question - I dont have any problem in participating in a content-only discussion. I have done so once in the past and arrived at a consensus with the disputing editor. Hyper9 (talk) 18:10, 21 February 2018 (UTC)

The filing editor resurrected their old ID solely for the purpose of disruptive editing and filing a slew of disputes and cases against me. And they still have not shown any sense of basic civility or change in their behaviour. Despite discussing in a wholly reformed manner and being patient with this highly disruptive and uncivil editor, I see that a greater sanction is being called against me with barely any supporting evidence for this. In a sense, I am not surprised by this irrational position by the Admin User:SpacemanSpiff. I have pointed out the biased behaviour of this Admin in the past as well (in July 2017). I am sure that they are a great Admin in other areas but as far as these topics are concerned, unfortunately I have not seen anything but biased and illogical interventions. However, there is probably very little that a contributor can do in this regard and once the Admins conclude the discussions, I am sure I can adhere by whatever decision is reached. Hyper9 (talk) 01:36, 23 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Robert McClenon[edit]

This is not "just a content dispute". It is a content dispute that is compounded by conduct issues. See . As you can see, there has been incivility on both sides. Robert McClenon (talk) 00:26, 17 February 2018 (UTC)

Well, I see that User:Nagadeepa is ranting at great length. My original comment had been that there was incivility by both editors, and Nagadeepa seems to be proving that sometimes the Original Poster gets hit by the boomerang. In other words, I concur with the pending result of topic-banning both parties. Robert McClenon (talk) 18:09, 21 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Nagadeepa[edit]

It is very clear from my extensive comments on the Talk:Malayalam page that I have exhausted all avenues of discussion with Hyper9 (whether moderated or non-moderated) and his claim that I want to edit the page without discussion is an outright falsehood.Nagadeepa (talk) 18:45, 18 February 2018 (UTC)

"While we are at it, it is necessary to look at the conduct of Nagadeepa, who has been frequently repeating himself by copy pasting same messages, [13][14] typing in caps."

This message by D4iNa4 has angered me. The only reason why I repeated that message in caps is because Hyper9 had repeatedly ignored it and refused to address it. Hyper9 himself requested me to highlight the quotations from the said scholars to differentiate them from my own words. In fact, this quote alone from the paper by S.V Shanmugam exposes Hyper9 whole argument and shows he has manipulated the paper. He did not directly address any of my critical questions and would instead go on a tangent with his responses. Debate with him was impossible hence why 3rd party mediation was crucial.Nagadeepa (talk) 20:06, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

I note that D4iNa4 has been tagged as a suspected sockpuppet. Nagadeepa (talk) 20:12, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

Just to clarify IP address in the talk page is also me. I have been engaged in discussion with Hyper9 for a much longer time than has been implied.Nagadeepa (talk) 21:32, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

Nice try MagSGV. That is not sock puppetry by any stretch of the mind. I only searched for my log in details when I needed to open the DRN. There was a gap of many days between my eventual log in. Nagadeepa (talk) 06:57, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Francis Schonken I accept that my behaviour has not been perfect, and I should have restrained myself from referring to Hyper9's character. I was infuriated by his stone walling and his brazen distortion of S.V Shanmugam's source.

Regarding the assertion that Tamilakam refers merely to a political structure, I dispute that strongly. Both S.V Shanmugam and Prof. Sreedhara Menon (Kerala's foremost historian) refer to it as a linguistic/cultural region. For most of its existence it was divided into three warring states all of which spoke Tamil.

The internal evidence from the ancient literature also supports this.Nagadeepa (talk) 08:10, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

MapSGV well that was clearly was not my intention. It was a case of me not bothering to dig out my long forgotten log in details with my initial discussion. You can believe what you want. But that was not my motivation at allNagadeepa (talk) 08:13, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Francis yes I would be open to take part in a 3rd party mediated discussion.

"Hyper9 seems to correctly indicate that some of the scholars quoted by Nagadeepa rather speak about political and other historical splits".

Could you please direct me to which scholar I quote says this. S.V Shanmugam, my main source clearly states that ancient Tamil Nadu and Kerala (Tamilakam) was a Tamil linguistic region i.e. region where the Tamil language was spoken. There is no consciousness in the ancient literature of any other language being spoken substantially.Nagadeepa (talk) 10:10, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Francis I will be willing to take part in a 3rd party meditated discussion and will refrain from making any offensive comments to the other editor.Nagadeepa (talk) 13:29, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Francis one of my main concerns regarding any 3rd party mediated process, is that will the 3rd parties actually read the source material under scrutiny? There has been blatant untruths said about one reliable source which anyone can see if they can actually read the research paper. If this does not happen then it will degenerate into a "his word against mine" argument which will go no where. Nagadeepa (talk) 17:21, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

@Francis Schonken: Is there a way to combine both 'Language and linguistics' with 'History and geography'? This dispute is easily resolved when these two disciplines are looked at together and not in isolation. The linguistic evidence coupled with the historical evidence (garnered from the ancient literature and inscriptions of Kerala which are all in Old Tamil) leaves no doubt that Hyper9's position is a fringe theory. The fringe academic that Hyper9 depends on (Govindakutty) is completely silent on the historical record for example.Nagadeepa (talk) 19:44, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

'posting unexplained poetry' @Bishonen: the poetry is self explanatory to anyone who has basic specialised knowledge of the topic (which Hyper9 has). It's an ancient poem from an Old Tamil anthology Pathitrupathu which was composed in Kerala during the early centuries of the Christian era (1st-2nd century AD). It proves that the people from Kerala regarded themselves as being part of Tamilakam, the common Tamil linguistic cultural region.Nagadeepa (talk) 11:35, 21 February 2018 (UTC)

"their jumping from an IP to their account on the talkpage without acknowledgement was beyond nonchalant (if not outright deceptive)".

I did not realise it was such a big sin. The whole premise of the talk page in my estimation was based on the merits of the arguments/evidence, not on who says it. I did not think it was huge deal whether I wrote it under my old handle which I had to dig up from obscurity (so i could request the 3rd party meditation) or written under my IP. To call it deception is extreme. To have such an innocent mistake used against me is unfair.Nagadeepa (talk) 13:46, 21 February 2018 (UTC)

Well now the gloves are off, and I'm expecting the inevitable ban, I'm not going to bite my lips. Everything I said about Hyper9's personal character I genuinely believe. Was it uncivil for me to say it out in a public forum? Yes and I should have restrained myself. However, I know I will be vindicated in the future when Hyper9 comes up again in yet another dispute mechanism with yet another editor. As for me I am not going to waste any time with editing Wikipedia anymore and I would prefer if you would give me a permanent ban from all topics (disable my account please). If I could delete my complete account including all online evidence of it that would be preferable. Thanks.Nagadeepa (talk) 19:21, 21 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by D4iNa4[edit]

While we are at it, it is necessary to look at the conduct of Nagadeepa, who has been frequently repeating himself by copy pasting same messages, [70][71] typing in caps. Such disruption only creates hostility. D4iNa4 (talk) 17:23, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

"I am afraid talking to you does feel like I'm talking to a mad man."[72] Clear violation of WP:NPA. D4iNa4 (talk) 17:29, 19 February 2018 (UTC)

@Nagadeepa: if my above message really "angered" you so much then I am sure you can't deal with content dispute. You believe that because next one is not agreeing with you that means they are not reading your messages and you can copy paste same messages until next one stops.

Your failure to address your bludgeoning, personal attacks, is visible. Talking about a 4 years old block of mine is not going to legitimize your ongoing disruption. Your IP edits seem to be violating WP:NOTFORUM.[73]

Nagadeepa has CIR issues and since he came with unclean hands, he needs to be sanctioned as well. Or otherwise close the report as content dispute (per Sandstein) and urge the users to try an RfC. D4iNa4 (talk) 15:04, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Nagadeepa could have apologized but this recent comment[74] further confirms that he is going to personalize these incidents and refuse to accept any mistakes. D4iNa4 (talk) 14:28, 21 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by MagSGV[edit]

@Nagadeepa: did you confessed your sock puppetry with IP on talk page? I wouldn't be surprised if Hyper9 was not aware of it. MapSGV (talk) 02:21, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Nagadeepa can you just answer my question? Yes that is sock puppetry. Trying to show up that different people are saying same thing when there is one person using the IP and account. — MapSGV (talk) 07:39, 20 February 2018 (UTC)
Bishonen, still Nagadeepa had to confess on talk page that he is behind the IP and he had enough time for that. This issue is not that one sided like you are thinking. Nagadeepa has engaged in disruptive editing. MapSGV (talk) 12:06, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by Francis[edit]

@Nagadeepa: it seems important you realise that your behaviour has been all but exemplary, e.g. at the DRN, as already mentioned by Robert McClenon: "there has been incivility on both sides" (emphasis added). Yours was at least as much a cause to sinking the DRN as Hyper9's (I even thought yours slightly more offensive). You've edited en.Wikipedia for over ten years now, although apparently not always using the Nagadeepa account. Like for Hyper9 it is a pity you apparently rather stayed away than edit outside your area of interest (an apparently very narrow area of interest). Your latest additions to this AE show little or no improvement regarding the tone of your comments, so I suppose at least a symbolical but firm warning to change your ways would be in place. If needs be in the form of an AE sanction.

Re. "... who's right about the content ..." (mentioned by one of the admins below): scholars disagree, classical story, and opponents try to get their preferred scholars in line for being designated as the "mainstream" in the article, thus discussions devolve in a classical fight, and since neither gets the upper hand on content, in a series of insults. From the more interesting content arguments:

  • Nagadeepa remarks that the scholars which are regarded mainstream by Hyper9 do in fact recognise that the other theory is mainstream.
  • Hyper9 seems to correctly indicate that some of the scholars quoted by Nagadeepa rather speak about political and other historical splits, which are not necessarily the same as the split of the language from its surmised predecessor languages (which is the topic of the dispute).

So, if scholars don't agree, maybe mention what scholars say in their own name without attempting to distil a "mainstream" indicator for the lead section out of this lack of agreement, which might be a practical application of NPOV instead of this cesspit of a discussion. To me at least Nagadeepa and Hyper9 seem equally lacking in behavioural skills to bring this to a consensus conclusion, and it is a pity that the DRN sank (for which both seem somewhat equally responsible, although Hyper9 should probably have been the wiser one, and Nagadeepa should have been aware that being offensive usually boomerangs), so that the discussion would ultimately have centred around presenting the material in a NPOV way in mainspace instead of being ultimately about editor conduct. --Francis Schonken (talk) 07:50, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

@Nagadeepa: would you be prepared, after this AE closes (whatever way it closes) to participate in a content dispute resolution process (RSN, official mediation, RfC, or whatever seems most advisable and gets accepted by those having a say in it) about the topic at hand without launching *any* offence to fellow editors?
@Hyper9: same question to you of course.
It might be possible (but it is up to admins to decide whether anything in this vein would be viable and/or desirable) to close this conditionally, say, that the first incivility by either of you would immediately result in a block of at least a week, with increasing block times when returning from block periods with new insults, etc (and/or other discretionary sanctions if any from the original ArbCom case are still in force). --Francis Schonken (talk) 08:33, 20 February 2018 (UTC)
@Hyper9: I grouped your statements. You didn't really answer my question, at least not too clear whether you could agree with "content only" in the discussions (no transgression whatsoever outside of the content issue that needs to be addressed).
@Nagadeepa: now you started to discuss content here, on a noticeboard that is a conduct noticeboard. I asked a question about conduct (i.e. your future conduct, whether it could adhere to certain principles), which you didn't answer. You had the opportunity to talk content exclusively, at the DRN (and it failed in part while you couldn't). Now we're at a conduct noticeboard, addressing conduct issues, and in your latest replies you seem to try to switch topic to content issues. If unclear about the difference (conduct vs. content), I must say that wouldn't promise too much regarding having future discussions either exclusively on content or exclusively on conduct: separating the two aspects is one of the methods used in Wikipedia to bring interminable discussions back on track. --Francis Schonken (talk) 10:38, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Anyhow, placed an IPA-related ds alert on Nagadeepa's talk page ([75]). Reason: Nagadeepa filed this AE request without mentioning any arbcom case (someone else filled it out for them, linking to the IPA case). Formally, this sort of meant Nagadeepa could have been unaware of the ds system. Thought it better to make this clear. In general I still think it best both editors would resume the discussion about the content (which seems interesting enough) without commenting about each others behaviour. This would be the best solution for Wikipedia I suppose: I'm not convinced the current version of the Malayalam article is unbiased, but I'm sure both editors can help hammer it out (if only they'd concentrate on content, not post vaguely related poetry on the article's talk page, walls of texts, boldface repeats of upper-case text, etc.) For that plan to work Hyper9 should be able to take part in discussions too, so I see less benefit in topic-banning them from anything. Nagadeepa seems wise enough not to need mediation in such content discussions: either they stop commenting on co-editors, or they incur the sanctions foreseen by the IPA ds system. Whether or not the discussion is mediated makes no difference. I'd recommend an RfC instead, which might attract other views instead of just two editors running in circles chasing each other's tails. In other words: close this AE request as content dispute, with a stern warning to both editors that IPA's ds sanctions will be applied if any of the former bad behaviour returns (which applies to both now). --Francis Schonken (talk) 15:56, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

  • @Nagadeepa: re. "will the [mediating] 3rd parties actually read the source material under scrutiny" – at DRN not, afaik. Afaik the same is true for formal mediation. RfC, e.g. when inscribed in the "History and geography" and "Language and linguistics" sets, has a higher potential of attracting people somewhat knowledgeable in the topic area, and interested in reading available sources. It would also be possible to take the source material to WP:RSN, but that is rather for sorting out limited sets of article content (half a paragraph or so) + underlying sources (less than a handful mostly), but this noticeboard is less suitable for the balance in an article as a whole. Other possibility: WP:NPOVN, rather for the over-all balance, but less focus on detailed assessment of actual sources. Or WP:FTN, but that is only if wanting to brandish one of the alternative theories as "fringe" (might give more discussion than it resolves). So all in all, RfC seems best imho. --Francis Schonken (talk) 17:44, 20 February 2018 (UTC)

Statement by (username)[edit]

Result concerning Hyper9[edit]

This section is to be edited only by uninvolved administrators. Comments by others will be moved to the sections above.
Though the complaint here is less than perfectly organized, Hyper9's original arguments against his ban don't persuade. To see more background, read the editor's talk page starting at User talk:Hyper9#Discretionary sanctions alert, which was in June 2017. I'm leaving pings for User:MelanieN, User:RegentsPark and User:Doug Weller since they participated in earlier discussions. Note that, when banned from Indian history, Hyper9 stopped editing the encyclopedia for precisely six months and then resumed where he left off, arguing about the same articles. This somewhat works around the rationale for timed bans, which are intended to let the editor contribute in other areas while avoiding the trouble spot. Hyper9's interactions with administrators were very indignant and they suggest two possibilities: either (a) the admins had no idea what they were doing, or (b) Hyper9 was really off the rails but refused to reflect on the problems they were causing. I suspect that (b) is more likely to be correct. EdJohnston (talk) 04:30, 17 February 2018 (UTC)
  • A cursory view of the available discussions gives me the impression that an indefinite topic ban might be in order. I'm happy to be persuaded otherwise, but I'm seeing a strong case of WP:IDHT and an unwillingness to discuss in good faith, at DRN or the talk page. Dennis Brown - 17:15, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I don't see how this is actionable. The supposed diffs being reported aren't diffs. And the explanation given for the report doesn't make clear how this is not just a content dispute. Sandstein 17:17, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
    • I agree the report as given isn't, but there is a problem to be found if you look elsewhere. Dennis Brown - 17:20, 16 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I concur with the topic ban. Though the discussion on the talk page is rather confusing, Hyper9 is clearly obfuscating and not assuming good faith. Given that they've had similar issues in the past, an indef topic ban is warranted.--regentspark (comment) 14:18, 17 February 2018 (UTC)
  • I'm on the fence, and would like some more information about recent editing. As EdJohnston says, Hyper9's six-month break after he got a six-month topic ban is a striking circumstance. I don't want to make too much of it, though, as "any edits or pages pertaining to Indian history" was a pretty wide topic ban. If Indian history is the user's area of interest, they can't be blamed too much for simply waiting out the ban. Especially as I didn't see anybody telling them at the time that they needed to edit Wikipedia during the topic ban in order to improve their 'Wikipedia CV'. (I may have missed it.) The break is unfortunate, though — editing other areas would have been a learning experience re how to edit Wikipedia and how to fit into a collaborative community. However, Ed, while I too was pretty appalled by Hyper9's complaints against his ban, on his page and in his appeal here, that was in June 2017. I'd agree he was "off the rails" then. But after his return in January he has clearly made an effort to discuss civilly. Dennis Brown, are you looking mainly at the linked June discussions, or at anything recent? And, most importantly for me to form an opinion about a possible re-ban: RegentsPark, could you explain more fully about obfuscation in the January-February discussion on Talk:Malayalam? It's somewhat over my head. P.S., Dennis, unfortunately SpacemanSpiff hasn't edited since 1 February. It would be a big help if he was here. Bishonen | talk 13:26, 19 February 2018 (UTC).
His blowing off the DRN really rubbed me the wrong way. You might could argue that it was too early, but it was accepted and he should have accepted a 3rd party mediating. Not all of his recent stuff is bad (I'm on the fence as well) but I'm not convinced he is here to work with others, after just sampling some of his edits. Dennis Brown - 14:49, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
Bishonen, the discussion is confusing because I can't figure out who's right about the content (but then, I rarely can!). My main concern was with the way Hyper9 handled the discussion. We have a newish editor who is bringing sources to the table but getting no traction. They then tried a DR but Hyper9 shot that down leave one very frustrated new editor. There appear to be some ownership issues as well. If they're not willing to go to DR, then I don't see much choice other than banning them from, at the minimum, Malayalam related pages. --regentspark (comment) 17:00, 19 February 2018 (UTC)
While I'm pondering. I'll just point out that Nagadeepa isn't technically a new editor, they've been editing since 2007. However, there was a break between 2010 and 25 January 2018. I suppose that kind of explains their IP editing on Talk:Malayalam from between 22 and 25 January, which they acknowledge above; presumably they had pretty much forgotten about using the account. "I only searched for my log in details when I needed to open the DRN" is a bit cavalier — if you have an account you should either use it or abandon it, not be on and off, which is confusing for others — but calling it sockpuppetry as MagSGV does is overly harsh, and I assume no sneaky motives.
OK. Considering that Hyper9 has made an effort to be more collaborative this time round, and may reasonably not have expected the DRN to be shut down over their demand for an apology (Hyper9 says above that he didn't), I feel another topic ban from Indian history would be overly draconian. I propose a six-month topic ban from all pages and discussions related to the Malayalam language. Better bold that so it stands out in my ramblings. For myself, I would also urge them to stop demanding apologies in any forum, as it never leads to anything good. I see they're still harping on above about how the other editor "has still not been decent enough" to provide an apology. Just move on, please. Bishonen | talk 11:52, 20 February 2018 (UTC).
  • I've been away so I haven't followed this issue when it began to unravel but now that I've had time to look at it, I think the original topic ban should be reinstated, indefinitely, with an appeal allowed in six months based on non-problematic contributions elsewhere, or else we're just going to be revisiting this issue again pretty soon (just like this time where the issues started after expiry of the prior topic ban). That said, I don't think the filer's conduct here is any better and they should also be subject to a topic ban from anything related to Indian languages. —SpacemanSpiff 04:05, 21 February 2018 (UTC)
    • Great to see you back, Space. I'm coming round to your view, they should have identical topic bans from Indian languages (not Indian history this time, right?). I.e., indefinite, appeal allowed in six months, will only be viewed favorably if they've contributed constructively in other parts of Wikipedia or in the sister projects. Apart from the way Nagadeepa gets personal, their jumping from an IP to their account on the talkpage without acknowledgement was beyond nonchalant (if not outright deceptive), and posting unexplained poetry there is a waste of other people's time that approaches trolling. But depending on how other admins feel, I would also be on board with merely a strong warning to both, with a request to them to read Francis Schonken's good advice carefully. Bishonen | talk 10:11, 21 February 2018 (UTC).
      • I think Indian history which includes history of Indic languages would be the right scope as the problems lie in the broader area, primarily related to the event history, not just this language article. —SpacemanSpiff 13:34, 21 February 2018 (UTC)
      • Not opposed to both, even if it just a fixed time, to remove the disruption and create an incentive for the future. Not sure a warning would be sufficient. Dennis Brown - 13:35, 21 February 2018 (UTC)
        • Space, I'll certainly defer to your opinion in this, as you know the area and incidentally also the sockfarms very well. But you wrote "I don't think the filer's conduct here is any better and they should also be subject to a topic ban from anything related to Indian languages". So, are you saying Hyper9 should be indefinitely t-banned from Indian history, but Nagadeepa from Indian languages? With the appeal in 6 months etc for both? I'd be cool with that, if so, but we'd better make sure it's clear. Bishonen | talk 16:07, 21 February 2018 (UTC).
  • @Bishonen, that is my opinion, since we've seen Hyper9 be disruptive in the wider area, however, based on what I've seen currently I can only find disruption by Nagadeepa within the languages area. Therefore I'd suggest an indefinite TBan from "anything to do with Indian history including languages/linguistic history" for Hyper9 and an indefinite TBan from "anything to do with Indian languages" for Nagadeepa. Needless to say, both bans should apply across any and all namespaces of and can be appealed here after six months, subject to evidence of non-disruptive editing in other areas. —SpacemanSpiff 04:08, 22 February 2018 (UTC)
            • Perhaps the easiest is to ban both from Indian languages. That way we get to see if Nagadeepa has broader interests and if hyper9 can edit constructively in the other Indian history topics. But, I will defer to Spiff on whatever they think best. --regentspark (comment) 16:51, 21 February 2018 (UTC)
  • The discussion has tapered off. @EdJohnston, Dennis Brown, and Sandstein:, do you have any further comments? There appears to be agreement from several editors to defer to SpacemanSpiff's suggestion of an indefinite TBan from "anything to do with Indian history including languages/linguistic history" for Hyper9 and an indefinite TBan from "anything to do with Indian languages" for Nagadeepa, both bans appealable here after six months, subject to evidence of non-disruptive editing in other areas. If no uninvolved admin objects, I will close this request with that result in 24 hours. Bishonen | talk 18:19, 25 February 2018 (UTC).
  • Thank you all, I'll close now. I can't tell the editors they're not allowed to appeal until after six months — an appeal is always allowed, and the AE sanction template says so — but I'll explain that it's only after six months that it's likely to be viewed favorably. Bishonen | talk 19:22, 26 February 2018 (UTC).