Guild Wars Wiki:Arbitration policy
This page is an official policy on the Guild Wars Wiki.
It has wide acceptance among editors and is considered a standard that all users should follow.
The arbitration committee is the final arbiter of user conduct on this wiki, including that of administrators, and can impose binding solutions for such issues when requested by anyone. The committee can also take other cases in general when the community wishes them to (with an explicit consensus).
Arbitration has no jurisdiction over the actions of ArenaNet within its role as the host of the wiki.
Regarding the entire arbitration process, the committee should be guided by these primary principles:
- The wiki being generally managed by the community
- General fairness
- Wiki stability and openness
Those should be taken as also encompassing (but not limited to) these sub-principles:
- Respecting community consensus, policy, and established practices
- Giving everyone a fair chance to have their argument be heard and considered within the process
- Ending severe disruption and resolving severe conflicts
- Protecting the wiki from potentially severe threats
- Limiting ArbComm intervention to that which is strongly warranted (generally as a last resort)
- Avoiding or minimizing undue bias in the process and making any significant potential remaining bias transparent
- Not setting precedents that would encourage a hostile environment.
The principles are not enforced strictly as absolutes nor by any formal process. Instead, they are indirectly upheld by community scrutiny and feedback, relying on users and/or sysops for general enforcement, and electing those that users believe will follow and balance them well.
Arbitration is generally NOT:
- a way to ensure that every infraction is punished or officially recognized
- an avenue to seek damages or extra punishment
- a court for deciding our moral standards
- responsible for providing mediation service
- expected to result in totally perfect solutions, even with respect to fairness or impartiality
- always required for (nor limited to) disputes involving a sysop
- limited to addressing policy violations
- something that absolves other users of the general responsibility of managing the community
At any time during the process, any individual committee member may issue injunctions, which generally take the same form as an item in a ruling, but are placed into effect immediately. They are enforced in the same manner and automatically end (if still active) when the relevant arbitration case is declined or closed, or when any committee member repeals them.
Injunctions are an extremely open-ended power with no immediate oversight. Committee members should limit their application and scope to what they believe is appropriate in facilitating arbitration, or is practically necessary.
- Requests for arbitration can be made at Guild Wars Wiki:Arbitration committee/Requests.
- Committee members will individually post whether they wish to have ArbComm accept the case, decline the case, or if they opt to individually abstain from the case entirely. An explanation should be given for declines (optional for accepts and abstains). A member who opts to decline is still a participant if the case is accepted.
- Whenever at least 2 committee members have accepted, the case is considered accepted. Whenever that cannot be achieved due to the number of declines and abstains, the case is considered declined (and the remaining steps are skipped).
- While accepted and open, the case is open for anyone to present evidence and arguments for consideration. In general, these should be addressed to the committee.
- The committee, aside from those who have abstained, will eventually decide on a final ruling (see next section), closing the case.
The committee reserves the right to deliberate in private, accept evidence in private should the need arise, and reject evidence (especially that which is unverifiable). Committee members are allowed to manage arbitration and arbitration request pages as they see fit, including removal of comments that may be excessively disruptive or off-topic.
Rulings and enforcement
Working together, non-abstaining committee members will draft a list of items such as:
- User:Example has been found to have engaged in excessive revert warring.
- User:Example has been found to have repeatedly violated NPA.
- User:Example is to be banned for 3 months for NPA violations.
- For 2 months, User:Example is to be limited to 1 revert per article per week. Violations shall be cause for a 1 week ban.
- For 1 month, User:Example is prohibited from editing article A. Violations shall be cause for a 1 week ban.
- User:Example must be reconfirmed as a sysop within 2 weeks or lose sysop status.
- User:Example's sysop status is suspended immediately pending reconfirmation.
Items should be made clear and not difficult to enforce, and do not have to be limited to users named in the initial arbitration request. In the case of disagreement between members or unresponsiveness, an item passes if the number of members that support it is at least 2 and more than the number that oppose.
The items constitute the final ruling when the committee closes the case, and are placed into effect at that time. Any items in the final ruling which require enforcement can be enforced by any user/sysop/bureaucrat as applicable. Any item may be repealed by future rulings. They are not to be taken as binding precedent for future cases (stare decisis does not apply).