Guild Wars Wiki talk:Elections/2007-12 bureaucrat election/Defiant Elements

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Total Wiki Noob View[edit]

I am mostly irrelevant in the scheme of things here, but figured I would offer my two cents in, since I have little vested interest in anyone or any side really, and I like to talk sometimes.

Defiant Elements says... "and I think Wikis are fundamentally unsuited to anything approaching true "rule by majority," but, that aside, the extent to which Admins are hamstrung by the policies which they enforce never ceases to amaze me. If an Admin isn't capable of making sound, informed decisions independent of the dictates of policy, then I think there's a problem."

While my noobishness will probably make most discount my view easily (and maybe they should), I have to wonder, what is the point of policy then? To me, policies on a wiki are like a bill of rights. They say what can and can't be done, and give people a framework to grow in. This isn't about trusting the admin enough in my opinion. To me, this is about respect and understanding the framework/system. A policy should hamstring an admin, just as laws hamstring the policy from doing whatever they want to the people. This is not to say police are not to be trusted, the great majority should. But I know few people who would give up their rights in order to not "burden" those with the power. Not all in power become corrupt, but it can and does happen. And if people can just ignore the established rules to deal with those of "lesser standing", I see nothing but corruption and headaches in the future. So if you don't want to be hamstrung by a policy, wouldn't the simple thing be to simply work on getting that policy changed? From everything I read, the concept of policy seems pretty free form. That it can adapt with the needs of the community.

From what I read of this, I would have to say this sounds more like trying to get power, to get the foot in the door and subvert the normal methods of changing current wiki policy over time (the appeal to the PvXers, and their attitudes also makes me think this). I could never support someone who advocates ignoring established policies simply because I should have faith. Your own words claimed PvX can be seen as a tyrant if i recall... I wonder why? But thats just me. If your problem is how this place works, you dont need to have power, all you need the community to support that change. I don't see how that could be possibly be wrong, unless, well, the community doesn't support you. Then I guess it would just be annoying. This wiki will always be as weak or strong as its majority, not its elite. And maybe I just don't get the real workings of these wiki things, but i really don't see whats wrong with a system that can adapt and has some checks and balances to its power structure. But who knows, maybe I totally misread this whole situation.--Riceball 03:04, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

As I understand it, DE(and others) suggests that sysops should be allowed discretion, not to make them more powerful(although if this wiki would actually promote power-hungry people to positions of power, then their problem is their failure in their choice, not in the failure of the system of powerful discretion-based sysops, as other wikis(including guildwiki and PvX) have done very well with the powerful sysop system without suffering from problems of administrative abuse), but instead to allow them to stop things that would harm the wiki which are not precisely prohibited by policy. --Edru viransu 03:09, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Shouldn't the policy loophole be closed instead of just going around it like a bunch of lazy people?--Riceball 03:13, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
That sounds like a good idea until you consider how long it usually takes for new policies to become policy and how impossible it is to specifically forbid every single way the wiki could be disrupted. The other option is to give your sysops the ability to use their sysop powers according to their discretion. --Edru viransu 03:16, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
No, laziness is good :P --- Ressmonkey (talk) 03:18, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
You can do that forever, but people will always find new loopholes. Forcing your sysops to do only exactly what we tell them to leads to this - if they could have any amount of discretion, this would not be a problem. However, every time someone does something bad that's not covered by policy, there needs to be a new discussion about it, and a new policy, and all that takes time during which others can exploit the weakness.
In an ideal situation the wiki would have no policies and no sysops and everyone would get along and not be stupid. In a slightly less ideal situation you'd have sysops but no policies, and the sysops would let people know when they're breaking the unspoken rules (which, to be honest, are pretty logical - don't revert war because it ties up the servers, don't be an asshat because other people have feelings to, etc etc etc). Policies only exist to let people know what these rules are. An unfortunate side effect of letting people know what they are is that, because they are written down, they can be interpreted quite strictly - as is on this wiki.
I'll be quite honest - on PvX, I don't read policies after they're accepted, unless a major change is proposed. The abbreviation of each policy speaks the spirit of the policy, instead of the letter of the policy, which is what - imo - should be followed. Armond 03:21, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
While this is just a simple wiki, and not "life." I would ask this. How would you feel if a cop acted the way you propose, on you? I totally get how an adaption of policy is a huge slow headache to accomplish. But isn't that why a policy should be as robust as possible, as clear as possible, and as complete as possible? And if people cant't do that, they really have no reasonable expectation, nor validity, to punish those who "need" to be. And while you say in theory a wiki shouldn't have policies in an ideal world, the fact is we do.--Riceball 03:29, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Well, you see, in life, I don't believe that there is any legitimate reason for the state to have any sort of monopoly on legitimate use of force(and thus for their to be a police force), whereas there is a legitimate reason for a wiki to have sysops. In actual practice, the powerful discretionary sysop method has worked and it has not resulted in abuse of power. Also, police officers are chosen much less stringently than sysops and bcrats should be, imo. --Edru viransu 03:34, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Sysops are more tested than potential police officers? There is no legitimate reason to have police, but there is for sysops? Don't see how we will ever see eye to eye on those concepts. But it would be interesting to see what would happen if the force from police was needed to protect you from those who think no rules apply to them. But its hard to think abstractly when people are rarely ever faced and tested in situations like these. Guess we have very different world views.--Riceball 03:39, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Whats also strange, how most of the people who I don't agree with also have "GW fails" on their user pages, yet they are on a GW wiki. Wonder how that works out.--Riceball 03:41, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
There is no way to prevent vandalism and other disruption of a wiki without sysops. All of the positive functions performed by police can be performed by people. Police officers are not nearly as stringently selected as sysops and bcrats should be. Also, GW does fail. That's why I and a lot of people who are still active on wikis and forums almost never play anymore. --Edru viransu 03:44, 12 December 2007 (UTC)\
If police officers were subject to as much scrutiny as sysops and bcrats, two things would happen. First, we wouldn't have nearly enough police because so few people want to be police. Second, we wouldn't have articles in the newspaper every two weeks or so about cops being fired for stealing drugs confiscated from drug dealers. --Wizardboy777 03:48, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
I don't know. I enjoy GW. Sure it isnt perfect, what game is? But to say it fails, simply smells of bias and short sightedness in my opinion. But naturally not in yours. :P But I would find it kind of sad to be on a wiki for a game I thought fails. Would seem so pointless, even if I had developed friendships. Thats when you move them away from the source of the failure. I can't see how you can help a game's community if you hate the game.--Riceball 03:53, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
This is the official wiki. The devs look here. There's a chance, however slim, that game-improving suggestions might be noticed and acted upon. Armond 08:03, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Riceball, *thumbs up*. Those are very sound points, and I believe you've explained things is a much clearer manner. I would like to point out that some of the views of adminship are a little outdated. Xeeron has already raised the issue. It was primarily a misconception coupled with a lot of "new-ness" amongst the sysops. It's been a month and separate discussions have popped up in several places and (what I'd like to believe) has culminated in a proposal for a reinterpretation/rewording of admin role (for a start) as announced GWW:RFC.
And something always missed from Erasculio's points: Why must we adopt a system other wikis are using despite having different communities? Why can we not attempt to work and improve on what we have when it appears to be tentatively working? Why can we not evolve it as time goes by? Why must it be perfect or ideal the moment it is introduced? It is demeaning to imply that as a relatively new community, we are incapable of coming up with our own system. And instead of helping, most of you are either just bashing it or trying to replace it entirely. It's frighteningly similar to "Look at our successful democracy. Let's force our style of government on other peoples."
I'm ranting again. This is getting off-topic. While Defiant Elements certainly intended to trigger some discussion, I would much rather all you advocates for change actually start offering your insight for Guild Wars Wiki:Adminship/Draft 2007-11-14 instead of complaining that "something-is-wrong-with-adminship-let's-replace-it-entirely-without-discussion" on a bureaucrat candidacy talk page. Let's try to keep responses in regards to Defiant Elements suitability for adminship instead of discussions on adminship in general. -- ab.er.rant sig 07:29, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
I concur with Aberrant, and would also like to point out, again, Guild Wars Wiki talk:Adminship as a suitable location. Backsword 09:42, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
I personally have tried that, as has Auron. I think we both concluded that nothing much gets done there - at the very least, I have. I believe DE posted there once or twice as well. Armond 10:02, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
While you failed to get what you wanted, it was not due to lack of attention. Backsword 10:17, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
It certainly didn't seem to be due to weakness of his argument, considering how the only reasoning anyone ever seemed to provide against it was "oh no, you're trying to take over" and Gravewit(yay for strawmans). --Edru viransu 13:19, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
It wasn't the weakness of his arguments; it was the lack of such arguments. Relying on NPA (as he admited on his user page) does not answer the two simple questions: what is so bad about this wiki that would require such a huge change, and why is the proposed change so much better than the current system? Armond's arguments had countless other flaws (such as asking us to trust sysops, of course unless they're doing something he doesn't agree with), but those two questions are what destroy his entire line of thought. Erasculio 18:51, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

One thing I didn't also note on before, just noticed last night on Defiant's talk page, was how Defiant doesn't really have a history here from the sounds of it, doesn't really "exist" here, like they may exist in other wikis. Isn't this role more about being an established part of the community, hence one reason why they should trust you already to work towards what the community is working towards? This isn't to say Defiant wouldn't do a good job. It just seems like its ill timed, and if you really wanted this role legitly, you would try again in like 2 or 3 months after actively contributing to the community over that duration.

I also question how a person can fill the same admin role in two different communities very well. And even if a person is able to keep tabs on both (I believe some do), both communities will get less of the overall benefit one would get if it was the actual focus. Its a simple time management issue. This wiki might not be big, but since its directly tied into the game, this is the place thats going to grow the most overall. But others probably don't share my same reservations on that.--Riceball 21:41, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

To Erasculio, personally, I'd be relatively comfortable trusting the SysOps more, but, at the moment, the wiki isn't about to drop dead, and doesn't need a sever overhaul, yet. And Riceball, I agree fully on the first point, and half on the second point, as it depends on available time, and how much time is spent on each wiki, and how efficient said user can be. Calortalk 21:48, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Yeah. The way the talk page read to me was, if people give me the power, I will participate in the community, otherwise I will just go back to PvX. That doesn't give me any reason to support a persons nomination. But boy, a person would need alot of time I imagine to admin two wikis. Hope you dont have a job or social life outside of this.--Riceball 21:51, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
A legitimate response, but, when this is resolved, whether or not I'm a bureaucrat when the dust settles, I'll be involved in, if nothing else, policy discussions. 50x19px *Defiant Elements* +talk 23:10, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Concerning time concerns, DE could easily handle almost all of his bcrat duties on PvX over MSN, popping in for a few minutes a day. PvX has enough good active sysops that DE doing sysop duties on PvX is not really necessary to that wiki's well-being. I know that I personally have managed to troll recent changes on multiple wikis while also sysoping one and playing games and numerous other things simultaneously. Although, this was in portions of my life in which I had absolutely nothing to do besides the internet... --Edru viransu 22:35, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, time should not be an issue (at least I can't imagine it being for the reasons that Edru mentions -- and yes, I do have a life outside of Wikis). As to whether or not I "exist" on this Wiki, I've been making a conscious effort (if not a perceptible one, at least not yet) to look through recent changes on a daily basis and read all the policies/policy talk pages/etc., since I didn't want simply jump into discussions unprepared and uninformed. One of the good things about any kind of poll when it comes to Adminship in any form is that you get a sense for whether or not a community trusts the person, so, I think that's a question that will be answered in relatively short order. As to whether it's ill-timed, my only response would be that I saw an opportunity to attempt to do some good. I realize the nomination may come off as half-cocked, but, I don't think any bad can come of an honest attempt. 50x19px *Defiant Elements* +talk 23:06, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

Raptors (and others) taunted a user so much he left the wiki. Nothing was done about it for ~a week. That's an example of the wiki falling apart, imo — Skakid HoHoHo 22:17, 12 December 2007 (UTC)

he did come back tho, and it was fun --Cursed Angel talk 22:20, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Not only the user came back, but Raptors was dealt with. How exactly is this "falling apart"? There's a funny assumption from many of those who complain about this wiki that action has to be done immediately with no discussion and, apparently, no thinking either. The good old "Kill 'em all, let God sort 'em out" mentality that leads to sysops who don't think - they just act. The current system is far better than that. Erasculio 23:14, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
But I like the "Kill 'em all, let God sort 'em out" mentality =( --- Ressmonkey (talk) 23:35, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
On PvX, a single admin would have acted autonomously to block the guys for asshattery the same day, and people would have accepted that because they like and trust the admins and know where to go to complain if they have any grievances. The differences between that and this are incredible and entirely out of proportion with the population disparity. --71.229.204.25 23:51, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
Solution: Ban 90% of users permanantly to lower population size. Then itll be like PvX, just only almost as cool. --- Ressmonkey (talk) 23:55, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
That's what would happen. A quick ban on Raptors would have only given the illusion that the problem was done with, while what did happen (the ArbComm decision) was a real fix. Between trying to rush in order to solve a problem only to ultimately fail at it, and actually thinking the situation through, the best option is obvious. Erasculio 00:10, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Explain to me how a month-long IP ban is only...the illusion that the problem was done with? How exactly does a block fail at removing a problem user? You're not making sense. --71.229.204.25 00:30, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
/agree. Banning solves all. --- Ressmonkey (talk) 00:34, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
The explanation is right here, on the wiki: Raptors was banned for a month, but that was not enough, hence the following procedures to deal with him. If someone just goes mindlessly banning people for random periods of time and assumes that's the solution to all problems, well, it's just the illusion I mentioned above. Erasculio 02:03, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
If it wasn't enough, ban him again for a longer span. And what the hell makes you assume the ban time is random or mindless? Are you really so narcissistic you can't accept that other people have the ability to make reasonable judgments? Or are you just tossing up your own strawman because you can't argue your position without one? --71.229.204.25 02:10, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
And yet, what you are complaining against is the "reasonable judgment" of this community (who decided to have sysops and policies as they currently are) and of the sysops who choose to not ban Raptors immediately, rather to stop and think. To assume you know better than all of those, with such a simplistic solution like "ban him again", well...Although I'm amused at how often in these discussions we get GWW:NPA breaches. Erasculio 02:26, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Don't call that the judgment of the community. The community is involved only if you look three degrees away, at the closest, and I don't see why the community should be involved. Wikis are not democracies and you're only obfuscating by pretending they are. And trust me, I'm not amused. The very fact that so many of these arguments end up in NPA territory should be very fucking telling. --71.229.204.25 02:31, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Ah, but that's exactly what it is - judgment of the community. Who do you think makes those choices? Little Santa Claus gnomes? Anyone is free to have a say about any subject and be listened to (as long as they follow the rules, of course). It was the community who decided how the sysops would be here (or the part of the community that cared enough about the issue to say something about it). And it's obvious that it's the community who runs the wiki - take away all contributors, who add content and actually build the site, and all you would have left would be sysops taking care of empty pages. The (false) assumption that the wiki is not a democracy is just one more thing along the lines of NPA breaches: vague and empty statements trying to hide a complete lack of arguments. Erasculio 02:40, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Strange that we have presented many arguments for why sysops need to be able to exercise discretion for the sake of the wiki and you've just dismissed them without any more counterargument than "What's wrong with the current system?" and when we answer that, you're again dismissive, acting as though any example of disruption being allowed to continue without punishment are actually good things. Your argument seems to be nothing beyond "but, but, consensus!" --Edru viransu 02:47, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Funny, that's the recurring excuse: "someone else said it before". Usually coupled with some vague and flawed statement ("disruption being allowed to continue without punishment"? You mean, other than an one year ban?). Even DE did that on his opening comment, with statements like "Again, Armond's user page gives you a pretty good sense of what I am trying to get at" showing his reliance on what others have said. Erasculio 02:57, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Your entire argument is an argumentum ad populum and you criticize us for "reliance on what others have said"? --Edru viransu 03:14, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
See if you can follow me here. The community chooses the sysops. That's one degree. The sysops create the policies. That's two degrees. The policies dictate how you treat rulebreakers. That's three degrees. Three degrees of separation between the community and the decision. And don't give me that bullshit about how everyone gets an equal say - if that was true, you wouldn't be here, arguing with logical fallacies instead of facts (and don't try to NPA me on that, I can spot at least two without scrolling up). And no fucking shit, the community runs the wiki. I never claimed anything to the contrary. What I did claim is that the community is not a democracy, as demonstrated by (follow me here) the Revert tool, policies overruling people, the blocklist, and the election requirements. AND THAT'S JUST FUCKING FINE. If this wiki was a true democracy, it would be covered by gibberbots. I could force this whole goddamn election just by fiat of having Tor installed. And you're both lying and voluntarily misinterpreting NPA to try to win an argument. Not a democracy. Capice? --71.229.204.25 02:50, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Yay to flawed statements and fallacies! I don't have to go deeper than a few phrases to point one more flaw in your reasoning: sysops are not the ones who create the policies, the community is. Which is one more proof of how this wiki is a democracy, as it's governed by the community and its elected agents. Erasculio 02:57, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
You pointed out one wrong statement. Out of five. By ignoring basic social concepts. And completely missing the point I was building towards in the process. And throwing in an ad hominem while you were at it. Congratulations, you must be proud. --71.229.204.25 03:08, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

Voting[edit]

Loved or not on PvXWiki, that wiki is different than this one in all ways possible. Very little experience here, so no. (comment moved from candidate elction page per policy) Calortalk 00:31, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

Well... well... well... /pout. --- Ressmonkey (talk) 01:53, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
It's got worse administrators and a larger userbase. That's it. You're daft if you think different subject matter changes how well someone can bureaucrat, especially when the two subjects are so entwined. --71.229.204.25 02:13, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
PvX doesn't really have a different subject matter. We're working on developing our own skill database, etc. to eliminate our reliance on other wikis for such info. PvX has a different focus, but intends to have at least quite a bit of the same sort of content. --Edru viransu 02:18, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Another difference is that we don't like when our users are called "daft". Backsword 02:19, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
And it owns this wiki in coolness. --- Ressmonkey (talk) 02:19, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
"You" was used as a general term. — Skakid HoHoHo 02:20, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Also, that was an either/or daft, not a straight-up daft. If you believe different focus on the same subject matter affects someone's ability to bureaucrat effectively, you're daft and that's just a statement of fact. --71.229.204.25 02:22, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Another difference is that PvXwiki's userbase doesn't QQ about NPA everytime anyone uses a rhetorical device that, taken literally, could be interpreted as an insult to a person, when it actually refers to the user's opinion of an idea that might be held by some users. --Edru viransu 02:24, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
In other words, we're not that fond of loopholes to thinly disguise insults. Saying "your ideas are those of an idiot" is still "the user's opinion of an idea that might be held by some users"...But it's obviously an insult. Erasculio 02:28, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
No, we just don't feel like typing "In general," before everything we type, because then you go on about stereotyping wiki users ect. — Skakid HoHoHo 02:33, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Making personal attacks on multiple people is not a loophole either. Backsword 02:36, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Since you take issue with my phrasing, seemingly, I'll explain precisely my reasoning. Referring to someone's actions as wrong or foolish is not NPA. Belief in an idea is an action. Therefore saying that believing in an idea is "daft"(even using figurative speech or a rhetorical device that literal interpretation of would imply that those who that idea are "daft") is not NPA, imo. In fact, I consider intentionally misinterpreting rhetorical/figurative devices to be abuse of a loophole in NPA. --Edru viransu 02:37, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
We're commenting on the content of the talk pages, if a person is part of that content we are allowed to comment on it. Going to their talk page and saying "UR DUMB/GAY/A FUCKING TWAT" is what NPA is really supposed to cover =/ — Skakid HoHoHo 02:38, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
You guys are the most... NPA reliant people I have EVER seen. ~~ User:Frvwfr2 frvwfr2 (talk · contributions) 02:43, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Actually Skakid, you aren't allowed to do that: "Comments should not be personalized and should be directed at content and actions rather than people". Commenting on someone goes directly against that statement, which is part of NPA. It's very easy to see what is or what isn't insulting; it's harder to write a policy that covers all possible loopholes, and while some still do get through, the current policy about NPA here is a nice one. Erasculio 02:44, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
To quote the policy you are so fond of referring to, Equally, accusing someone of making a personal attack is not something that should be done lightly, especially if you are involved in a dispute. Also, Do not respond on a talk page of an article; this tends to escalate matters. Likewise, it is important to avoid becoming hostile and confrontational yourself, even in the face of abuse. When possible, try to find compromise or common ground regarding the underlying issues of content, rather than argue about behavior. --Wizardboy777 02:51, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
I'm sure he meant your actions reflected daftness =) — Skakid HoHoHo 02:52, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
(About wizards) PWNT! ~~ User:Frvwfr2 frvwfr2 (talk · contributions) 02:53, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Your point is...? You (or anyone else) are not allowed to comment about someone instead of commenting on content or actions. Quoting random parts of the policy does not change that. Erasculio 02:59, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Policy also says not to accuse some of NPA on the talk where the possible NPA has occured. --Edru viransu 03:03, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Part of your problem is that your NPA basically a copy of the GuildWiki NPA. This, in and of itself, is not an issue because the editors to that NPA released their edits under proper licensing. HOWEVER, that NPA is ripped off of the Wikipedia NPA. That NPA is geared toward dealing with a MUCH larger community where most disputes are about the content of a page. Its meant to keep disagreements about content from coming down to name calling and personal attacks. In the much smaller communities we are dealing with here, one must truly consider the spirit of the policy. Especially the part about not taking it lightly. Accusations of NPA violations are meant to be very serious and not used just because someone said something that very vaguely could be found insulting. Its really to deal with direct attacks that are clearly violations. Throwing these accusations around devalues the policy itself and can be far more detrimental to a wiki community than a violation of it can be.
I've been thinking about bringing this up on the policy's talk page. —JediRogue 03:17, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
My point is that perhaps you should follow the suggestions outlined in the policy and refrain from yelling "NPA!" the second anything even remotely resembling an insult is posted. Like the policy says, that ticks people off and causes the situation to escalate. Also, doing it so often betrays an inability to resolve even the most minor disputes in a mature manner. --Wizardboy777 03:12, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
Ignoring the policy is pointless. Whenever something insulting is posted, that is a NPA breach; trying to hide behind policy loopholes ("oh look, I was talking about his actions, not about him!") is as bad as using its seriousness as an excuse to allow insults to go unpunished. Any insult is serious; whenever someone tries to "win" an argument by intimidating someone else, the main tool of the wiki (a discussion among the community) has been hurt.
And please, spare me the "Throwing these accusations around" speech - in all those months here, I have accused someone of NPA breaches less than half a dozen times (and do notice how those times I didn't "accuse some of NPA on the talk where the possible NPA has occured"). Talking about the policy, like I'm doing in this section, is not saying someone is breaching it. Erasculio 10:47, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

(Resetting indent) I would like to point out a number of things:

  1. Responses to all five of those posts you linked to include skepticism as to whether or not they broke NPA, and only two actually resulted in temporary bans.
  2. On the second auron post, HeWhoIsPale says "This quite frankly looks less like an NPA violation by Auron and more like a user using NPA to attack another user they don't like."
  3. In all my time on PvX (and my first contribution on PvX is a month earlier than your first contribution on GWW), I can't remember ever accusing anyone of breaking NPA, and I have yet to ban anyone for violating it. You've "only" accused people five times. Also, just because it's not on the admin noticeboard doesn't mean you didn't accuse them.
  4. Your comments on talk pages tend to be fairly provocative. For example, here are a few things you said in the above talk:
    • specifically, we don't need so-called leaders who believe they're allowed to stomp over what the community has decided, nor zealots who think themselves above the policies and therefore allowed to breach said policies as they wish. Later, you claimed it was not directed at anyone, and yet you prefaced it with the word "specifically". It was not in response to another comment on the talk, but to DE's candidate speech. Thus, it is very reasonable to assume that it was, in fact, directed at DE.
    • have I mentioned your little RfA here? Oh look, no, I haven't. Do I really have to explain why this is provocative? You could have just said "I never mentioned your RfA".
    • Making it short, your reply was irrelevant. You blew off DE's entire statement, calling it irrelevant and "shallow". It's as if you didn't bother to read his reply. He quoted your statement about his viewpoint being wrong, and asked you to explain why it was wrong. You replied by saying "you are, in fact, wrong, given how the elections here are not solved through voting, rather by consensus." Reading the elections rules for bureaucrats, I notice that The community decides the winner(s) through discussion and consensus on the election talk subpage, based on the guideline that every regular user (that also meets stage 2 criteria) should have relatively equal weight in the voting process and the general metric to be used is the amount of support minus the amount of opposition. That is definitely voting. The voting is used to measure the consensus.

--Wizardboy777 00:29, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

  1. I'm amused at how you think any NPA breach leads to a ban. The first comment against Auron was defined as a NPA breach but he got a warning, not a ban, so it's out of your little count; sysops here like to think more instead of hurrying to ban mindlessly.
  2. Yes, and in the Armond's comment Auron also said I was making up a NPA breach, despite the sysops saying otherwise and Armond himself admiting in his user page that he was trying to insult me. The "PvX gang" obviously excells at loyalty.
  3. So you don't care about trying to keep the wiki free of insults. And you think that's a good thing?
  4. If you want to read something I have said in a provocative light, there's not much I may do about it. If after I have stated with all the letters that I wasn't trying to insult DE you refuse to believe me, I do have to wonder who is it who's making insults out of thin air here.
  5. Funny, because reading the elections rules for bureaucrats it says very clearly, in the section about what happens after voting, that "Both the total count and ratio of support/oppose votes should not be considered factors (e.g. a candidate who receives a support to oppose ratio of 5:1 could still lose to a candidate with a ratio of 2:1)". In other words (and as it's said in the RfA policy) "it is not a simple tally". Erasculio 01:21, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
  1. Valid point about not all NPA violations leading to a ban. The implication that the sysops at PvX ban mindlessly and hastily is not.
  2. Not really feeling like responding to this point.
  3. Nice thinly veiled insult.
  4. You don't seem to be willing to accept 71.'s profession that he did not intend to insult anyone.
  5. Funny, because as has been discussed, it is(or at least was), in practice, a simple tally of the votes. --Edru viransu 01:33, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
  1. Like I said in the above section, the implication was that the proposed model for sysops here is to have them banning mindlessly and hastily. I don't really care about what is done on PvX wiki.
  2. La la? I don't know how to skip a number.
  3. You shouldn't accuse someone of being insulting that often, given how using that accusation carelessly only weakens it.
  4. Please remind me where I said that 71. was insulting someone and he replied that he wasn't.
  5. Are you talking about the last bureaucrat election before this one? In that one, we had a considerably long discussion trying to figure out who would win; a discussion that would have not happened if the results of the voting were considered to be a simple tally. The stage that decides who the winner will be is, and has been for a long time, after the voting, taking it in consideration as well, not exclusively. Erasculio 02:03, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
Erasculio, this is why you will never make a good bureaucrat. You argue to win, not to reach consensus. --71.229.204.25 02:06, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
Also, in before a half-page of vague nonsense that completely avoids discussing my post while insinuating I broke NPA in such a muddled manner that you can deny it to the death. --71.229.204.25 02:10, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
[1]
Also, please tell me how saying that someone doesn't care about NPA is not an insult? Is not caring about NPA not a bad thing? I do hope that bit was sarcasm, though, because otherwise... well... wow... --Edru viransu 02:20, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
I'm curious, what's the point of your link? It isn't me saying 71. was trying to insult someone and he denying it; it wasn't even me saying that someone was breaching NPA, rather a comment about how it's perfectly possible to use the old "I'm commenting on his actions, not him" loophole to be insulting while trying to avoid a policy breach.
And why the assumption that someone not caring about NPA is a bad thing? The fact an user does not insult others does not mean he will tell others when they have breached NPA, nor that he will let the admins know. Someone who only contributes to the articles and does not read talk pages has no reason to know of, or care about, NPA. And so on. I do have to say "wow" at the irony of being told I'm being insulting by someone who was praising how "PvXwiki's userbase doesn't QQ about NPA everytime anyone uses a rhetorical device that, taken literally, could be interpreted as an insult to a person". Erasculio 02:41, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
"In other words, we're not that fond of loopholes to thinly disguise insults." Considering the discussion in which this comment was framed, it's rather odd that you'd choose that timing and that phrasing to have a purely theoretical discussion on philosophical differences. By which I mean I think you're lying between your teeth. --71.229.204.25 02:49, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
No, you did not say that 71 was breaching NPA per se, you said that the class of statements to which 71's statement belonged were NPA breaches. Anyways, I'm done with this conversation because it's become pointless and detrimental to the wiki and the discussion. --Edru viransu 03:32, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

Cmon needs more massive numbering things. --- Ressmonkey (talk) 03:03, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

I think it's kinda funny how Erasculio alone seems to be a consensus, as no one else is backing him up, but he keeps talking about his view being the consensus. --Wizardboy777 03:24, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
Of course. If he admitted he wasn't a consensus, then he's allowing the possibility he'll have to admit he's wrong, and that's something I notice he very carefully avoids. --71.229.204.25 03:33, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
I don't personally think any of you have broken GWW:NPA, but most of you guys seem to be trying very hard to actually break it, although I can't tell if you are doing so knowingly or not.
To quote from GWW:NPA:
  • Frequently, the best way to respond to an isolated personal attack is not to respond at all. Debates can become stressful for some editors, who may occasionally overreact. Additionally, talk page discussions are in a text-only medium that conveys nuances and emotions poorly; this can easily lead to misunderstanding. While personal attacks are not excused because of these factors, editors are encouraged to disregard angry and ill-mannered postings of others when it is reasonable to do so, and to continue to focus their efforts on improving and developing the Guild Wars Wiki.

    If you feel that a response is necessary and desirable, you should leave a polite message on the other user's talk page. Do not respond on a talk page of an article; this tends to escalate matters. Likewise, it is important to avoid becoming hostile and confrontational yourself, even in the face of abuse. When possible, try to find compromise or common ground regarding the underlying issues of content, rather than argue about behavior. If you are too angry to respond without violating this policy, consider taking a short break from the wiki, or contact an admin.
If you must insist on continuing this discussion (which, I might add, has left it's original topic a little while back), then don't go arguing about who's being more insulting. If you think someone is violating NPA, then don't go telling them so; let an admin know, instead of continuing the discussion and possibly escalating the situation. To put it into simple terms, someone bullies you in school. You could tell a teacher that so-and-so was bullying you (good idea), or you could tell the bully to stop being such a bully (and lose a few teeth).
This is my personal, outsider opinion on the discussion, and I hope you guys can at the very least look back at your own posts and make sure you haven't said anything you regret. You might not think you're being insulting, but keep in mind, it might not seem the same to someone who doesn't know you well, or at all. Apologies for taking up half a page with my post. --User Jioruji Derako logo.png Jïörüjï Ðērākō.>.cнаt^ 10:16, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
Trust me, I don't regret a thing I said. Also, HAY JIORUJI! :D --71.229.204.25 10:29, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
As long as you don't regret it, then far be it from me to do anything more then warn you. Also, hai Random Assortment of Numbers and Punctuation That Is Well Known On PvXWiki. I'm going to call you RAoNaPTIWKOPvX for short, 'kay? --User Jioruji Derako logo.png Jïörüjï Ðērākō.>.cнаt^ 10:35, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
Okay, but only if you share the umlats. --71.229.204.25 10:40, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
"think it's kinda funny how Erasculio alone seems to be a consensus" - I think it's funnier how, in this entire section, I haven't mentioned the word "consensus" once. One more flawed argument in the list together with "I think you're lying between your teeth" (although I did get a laugh out of "it's rather odd that you'd choose that timing and that phrasing to have a purely theoretical discussion on philosophical differences", it's not that often that I read such nonsense; thank you). Do you have any real argument? Anything using, you know, logic and reason? Do you think you could try at least to reply to my arguments, instead of going into tangents about what you think you read? Because apparently the "PvX gang" is shooting in all directions and, as expected, isn't hitting anywthing. Erasculio 10:53, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
I finally figured out who you sound like. Tony Snow.
Heh. That's kinda funny, actually. --71.229.204.25 11:00, 14 December 2007 (UTC) remember what I said about arguing to win, and what that meant for your ability to function as a bureaucrat? yeah, I meant that. but feel free to prove my point some more.
Ok, so list of new so-called arguments:
  • "you sound like. Tony Snow" - yay, thanks for such priceless piece of logic. My life has changed.
  • You would not be a good bureaucrat - I'm not sure if you haven't realized but...I'm not trying to be one. I don't want to be one. You might as well have said I would not make a good mathematician, and it would have been as empty as your original remark.
I'll repeat myself, then: "Do you have any real argument? Anything using, you know, logic and reason? Do you think you could try at least to reply to my arguments, instead of going into tangents about what you think you read?" C'mon, I'm waiting, I'm sure you can do better than that. Erasculio 11:10, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
...You know what, fuck it. Just see Armond's userpage. Trying to debate with you is more painful than stabbing myself in the dick with a magnesium flare, and a lot less productive to boot. I don't even care if you want to pretend you won something here, in fact please do so. You'll only be proving my point. --71.229.204.25 11:22, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
All of you, enough. Stop using Defiant Elements candidacy talk page for back-and-forth jabs and seemingly baiting each other to breach NPA. It was just like this during the nomination phase, and now it's happening again. Take it to your own user space. This is disrespectful to the candidate. -- ab.er.rant sig 11:20, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

Wrong area[edit]

Bcrats are not what is wrong with this wiki. You have some valid points, but given the nature of how you've gone about this and how little your footprint is here, I'll have to say no. -elviondale (tahlk) 02:37, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

I agree. Bureaucrats aren't what's wrong with this Wiki, I never claimed the bureaucrats were bad. I say that I think the system is flawed, imperfect, not that it is wholly bad. In fact, regardless of whether the bureaucrats are "good" or "bad" or "what's wrong with this wiki" is really secondary. If I believe that a better system can exist, whether or not the current system is "broken," I feel obligated to make an attempt. Which explains I guess the "nature of how [I've] gone about this," I was resolved in the belief that I could do something valuable, but, that's a personal belief, I'm gonna try my best to contribute regardless. And of course, your last point. I can't say I disagree, because I don't... at least not completely... attempting to answer that question (even to myself) will have me going in circles all night I think. I appreciate the response, cheers. 50x19px *Defiant Elements* +talk 03:15, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
I like you quite a bit, DE, but I agree that you just don't have the history here. If you're around until the next election, I won't oppose (and will probably support). —Tanaric 04:24, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
I appreciate the sentiment. To be honest, one of the reasons I was displeased at my own lack of contributions was because it barred me from supporting your nomination :). And if I had to pick one piece of "evidence" that was particularly damning, it would be my lack of contributions, as I said, I don't even know quite how I feel about that fact. As to whether I'll be around when the next election rolls around... well... I certainly hope so. 50x19px *Defiant Elements* +talk 04:29, 13 December 2007 (UTC)

Needs to be active on this wiki, not gwiki/pvx. —

Change needs to happen around here, and electing old familiar faces won't let that happen. -

Same as Auron, except change "familiar faces" to "people who don't do their job well". --

Elections[edit]

I always wanted to come back to your comment: "On a more philosophical level, I dislike the notion behind elections for a couple of reasons.". You can find my (rather long) statement here: User:Xeeron/policy#A defense of elections and democracy --Xeeron 17:17, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

Votes[edit]

I was kinda shocked when i saw the voting here. DE is mature, responsible, level-headed, intelligent, efficent, etc. the list goes on and on. The fact that he's not active enough on this wiki is more a detriment to this wiki then it is a reason to oppose him. TBH, everything he said in his nomination was true and more. This wiki definatly needs something, as currently it is much inferior to guildwiki. DE has been a valued contributor to guildwiki and pvxwiki, both of which are more efficently run than here and also serve their intended purposes better. Overall, i feel that opposition to DE is foolish. The fact that alot of users here arent familiar with him here is a shame, since if he did contribute more the wiki would probably be doing alot better then it is now. --The preceding unsigned comment was added by User:72.78.13.5 (talk).

Congratulations, you just summed up most of what's wrong with GWW. Lord Belar 03:11, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
That's nice and all, but the thing is: DE didn't contribute here. Most people have no clue who he is. Say, you go to the polls. Are you going to vote for some candidate for president you've never heard of? No. I've seen him a bit on PvX and GWiki, but I don't know how he goes about things over on those two wikis would translate over here, as this wiki is run with a totally different mindset. If DE became an active contributor, showed his "responsible, level-headed, intelligent, efficient" side, then ran for b-crat again 6, 8 months down the road, there would likely be a good amount of support. And IP, this wiki is better than GWiki in some areas (design, style, etc.), and GWiki is better than here in some ways (overall content, way the admin system works, etc.). Neither will ever be the "better" wiki. And PvXWiki is totally different than these two wikis because of the content it manages compared to here, so it's like apples to oranges. Calortalk 03:47, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
I like Defiant Elements, but bureaucrats have no mandate to alter policy, and all DE seems to really want is to change the way this wiki works. Regardless of whether I agree with DE or not, bureaucrats must campaign to change policy just like any user; being a bureaucrat affords him no advantage in this regard. LordBiro 10:15, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Ah, but the ideas of a bureaucrat can help influence others' decisions. If the bureaucrat, who is held in high esteem, says something, he is more likely to be listened to. Besides, DE's said he thinks this can only be done with a concentrated effort on the bureaucrats' part. Armond 11:38, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Actually, no. Again, you're thinking as if this were PvX or GuildWiki. Bureaucrats here are given no extra power regarding policy changes, something that doesn't make sense anyway. Tanaric did not become less esteemed by the community, nor did his words lose weight, when he left the bureaucrat position. Same with Rezyk. Users who are in held in high esteem are chosen as bureaucrats, not the other way around; the fact DE is not been chosen as a bureaucrat reflects what the community thinks about him so far. Erasculio 11:52, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Last I checked I wasn't talking about bureaucrats having a larger vote in policies, and last I checked that didn't happen on PvX or GuildWiki. Feel free to re-read my post and make an appropriate response, but if you don't feel like it, don't bother. Armond 12:04, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Funny, somehow I'm fairly sure I didn't say anything about a "larger vote". Are you sure you are reading the proper comment? Mine is the one talking about how "high esteem" is linked to users, not to a position - I suggest reading it, it has a nice counter to your point. Erasculio 12:10, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Stop your personal wars. - anja talk 12:13, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, seriously, neither of you come out of the last few posts particularly well. LordBiro 17:47, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
You're right, and for that I apologize... but I rather think that wasn't on either of our minds at the time, or we wouldn't have posted. :/ Armond 18:32, 15 December 2007 (UTC)


This wikis different mindset is its main problem. the only thing this wiki has over Gwiki is the fact that anets staff is easily accessible from here(tjough tbh, i dont know how much they seem to listen).

I like the vots against him giving reasoning like "Needs to be active on this wiki, not gwiki/pvx". news flash: gwiki and PvXwiki work, this place dosn't. obviously the have good leadership on both of those sites and this site is lacking in that department.--Coloneh 01:41, 16 December 2007 (UTC)

Define "doesn't work". Go to Aiiane's Talk page (Aiiane - talk - contribs) 03:50, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Well, doesn't work is probably the wrong phrase. Fails to work well may be better. This wiki started up as an inferior official substitute for Guildwiki. Now, several monthes later, it is still much inferior. The way it is run if inferior to Guildwiki and PvXwiki and it lacks the content of Guildwiki aswell.
9 months of divided attention versus over a year of mostly undivided attention probably has more to do with the content difference. How it's run is the entire debate, and not everyone agrees on that. Go to Aiiane's Talk page (Aiiane - talk - contribs) 05:10, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
9 monthes of attention from the Anet staff and it isnt up to par with a player managed wiki? Clearly the way that this wiki is run is the issue at hand. 9 monthes is alot of time to set up content, particualrly when the people managing the wiki created the game for which it is about.

I would just like to point out that everybody that voted for DE is from pvx, except that necromancer dude who got his vote removed. Also, all who opposed come from this wiki. WIKI WARS FTW!!! --- Ressmonkey (talk) 02:08, 16 December 2007 (UTC)

Not necessarily true. I'm mainly on GuildWiki and here, although I am fairly active on PvX as well. Eloc is a fairly active contributor on PvX, and he voted "Oppose". Most of the people who Support here are older editors, who have known DE from GuildWiki, or currently know him from PvX. The Opposing votes are mainly active contributors on here, who haven't seen much of DE before this. (with exceptions of course.) --User Jioruji Derako logo.png Jïörüjï Ðērākō.>.cнаt^ 06:12, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Eloc gets into a ton of arguments on PvX due to incompetence. DE is the most reasonable person to deal with on the entire site. Eloc disagrees with policy so he blames the admins for telling him that hes breaking it.72.78.13.5 06:36, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Incompetence is the name of the game on this Wiki. Trust me, I am a prO. --Readem 06:45, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Still, Eloc is active on PvX. And nobody was saying you do anything competent here Readem, so no worries, the status quo is still intact. :P --User Jioruji Derako logo.png Jïörüjï Ðērākō.>.cнаt^ 07:54, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
Wow, talking about me behind my bakck are you all? lol. Just so you know, I haven't gotten banned or anything on PvXWiki and I only vote. Simple as that. Also, it's mainly 2 users, not sysops, who are bugging me there. The Sysops are pretty nice there and ya. I don't get in that many arguments. — Eloc 22:12, 21 December 2007 (UTC)
If you like the sysops, then why'd you oppose DE, one of the best there.
Bureaucrat =/= Sysop. — Eloc 04:44, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

Possibly the best thing for this wiki, and he's shot down.[edit]

Obviously. And of course the pvx vote got neautrilized =( -dark.

Yeah, right...¬¬User Ereanor sig.jpgreanor 20:53, 21 December 2007 (UTC)
PvX ftw! (only the 9th or so time ove said that) --- Ressmonkey (talk) 22:44, 21 December 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, it's a shame, but tbh, i don't think De would have had much of an effect on this wiki. I think that its many problems are fundamental to the wiki and from what i'm comming to understand, it doesn't seem like the B-crats have much power to do anything about it.
Unfortunately true. Not much can be done to cure the ails of a wiki founded on mistrust and "democracy." -Auron 13:26, 16 February 2008 (UTC)
The real problem is in Riceball's first statement above, said many months ago:
"To me, policies on a wiki are like a bill of rights. They say what can and can't be done, and give people a framework to grow in."
Seeing how this place stemmed almost exclusively from old editors from the GuildWiki, it makes sense to look at policies as they evolved there to see how they evolved here. We never had a "bill of rights" on the GuildWiki. We didn't even have sysop authority, back in the beginning. We had a small group of intelligent people who discussed the way things ought to go and then did it. Period. People didn't stalemate discussions through endless back and forth -- we all conceded when concession was best for the wiki. We didn't _need_ policies.
As time went on, certain practices became common. For example, we never had a "no personal attacks" policy, but everybody tended to frown on personal attacks, rare as they were. I noticed certain trends in our behavior and wrote a short set of "policy" articles. Never were policies justification for any action -- they merely reflected the common values the group already had. When new editors came to the GuildWiki, we pointed them to the policy portal so that they could see what our culture was like, so they could ingrain themselves within it. As time went on, we made more policy articles, but they all served in the same basic manner as my initial set did.
And then we moved here. And editors unfamiliar with the history of the GuildWiki's policies ported some here outright, and made them into law. And now law-mongering policy zealots along with unfortunate history-ignorant newbies believe that a code or a "bill of rights" is not only helpful, but actually necessary, for tranquility and productiveness on the wiki.
It's honestly pretty depressing.
Tanaric 16:00, 16 February 2008 (UTC)
You long for an utopian place where laws are not needed. Tons of people (and societies) have before. Sometimes it works for a time, sometimes it breaks down right away. But it never, ever, works once the group size outgrows that which is small enough such that everyone knows everyone else well. A wiki without policies might work, but only if you restrict yourself to a handful editors. --Xeeron 00:58, 17 February 2008 (UTC)
What about keeping it to a few hundred? Oh, wait, that's what we have. -Auron 01:55, 17 February 2008 (UTC)
a few hundred = 18,000+? Unless we're differentiating users from editors. Calor Talk 02:00, 17 February 2008 (UTC)
Right, because 18,000 people are regular users and utilize talk pages daily. My bad. -Auron 02:01, 17 February 2008 (UTC)
I'll take that as a "Yes, Calor, we're differentiating users from editors", and turn a blind eye towards Auron's bluntness. Calor Talk 02:03, 17 February 2008 (UTC)
I was trolling, y'know. The number of registered users is nowhere close to the number of active ones - pulling out the 18,000 frustrated me, but I realize you probably weren't around for these discussions on GWiki, so I apologize. -Auron 02:53, 17 February 2008 (UTC)
Xeeron, I long for nothing. We're not a sovereign government, we're a video game website. Besides, the "lawless" GuildWiki lasted just fine without them. Even as policies, they were never quoted like law, the way they are here. The only real law we had was that I and my sysops had the right to do as we pleased, but that was less a law than an agreement among all those in the culture.
Auron's right in that we're small enough to work that way. If we collaboratively, organically arrive at a culture, and we require newcomers integrate within that culture instead of purporting a fully-free, democratic, "be completely free and unique" idea like we do here, everything works quite well.
Any failures any wiki has always stem from failures in culture, not failures in policy.
Tanaric 07:30, 18 February 2008 (UTC)
Agreeing on a culture is much harder than agreeing on a policy. I, for sure, did not sign any agreement that you and your sysops "had the right to do as we pleased", so I must not have been part of the guildwiki culture, despite being an active contributer there. That is not to say that having a common culture would not work, yet I don't see how your process of "collaboratively, organically" arriving there would work. Would you change your beliefs about what is right and wrong to coincide with mine? Should I change mine? An important part of a democracy is that the minority accepts the point of the majority, but that is a far step from adopting the majority's "culture". --Xeeron 12:57, 18 February 2008 (UTC)
You didn't have to sign an agreement, Xeeron. You accepted the state of things as inherent to the site or you left. Those were your only two choices.
Yes, part of integrating into any culture is changing your beliefs. When I lived in Germany, I accepted that public nudity at a bathhouse was not wrong, even though it is in the prevailing culture of the United States, my homeland. Naturally, if your beliefs are diametrically opposed to the prevailing beliefs of the culture, you'll leave or suffer -- many a troll are now doing both here, since our prevalent culture is perceived to favor policy over common sense. When you joined the GuildWiki, you had to accept NPA, AGF, YAV, and, yes, ADMIN as right. Anybody who could not do so left -- we experienced this after the builds wipe.
Like it or not, we actually do have a common culture here. There are subcultures, certainly, but there is a dominant overarching culture that governs the site in general. I work to advocate beliefs that aren't fully ingrained in that culture -- like admin discretion -- so that they become culturally standard. Still, the number of things I advocate are minimal. People agree on about 80% of how this place ought to be run -- no vandalism, no personal attacks, civility, no disruption, focus on Guild Wars, etc.
Tanaric 01:38, 19 February 2008 (UTC)
I'd like you to consider using some different terminology in future wordings:
  • Instead of the transition to ADMIN being an "agreement", please stick with something like an (implicit?) "acceptance". "Agreement" sounds like it was discussed and/or advocated. Also, you mention about when Xeeron joined GuildWiki, but note that that was much earlier than this.
  • Instead of "never were policies justification for any action", something like "I never saw policy used as justification for any action". To be frank, I've always thought of a lot of this mentality as stemming from GuildWiki.
  • Instead of "admin discretion", something like "sysop open-ended discretion". Otherwise I think it tends to propagate the notion that we don't already have some admins with pretty open-ended discretion whenever they consider it warranted enough (3 of them), or the notion that the debate is about whether or not to have sysops with zero discretion.
--Rezyk 08:12, 19 February 2008 (UTC)
Tanaric, have you considered that the change may well be due to how people view a fansite vs an official site? Setting up a fansite they fell that they can rightfully shape it the way they want. Any outsider contributes at their sufferance. After all, it's their site. But when it comes to administrating an official site, they feel they have no right to pick who's welcome and must be much more inclusive, basically only disallowing what everyone, including newcomers, agree on, which will be general stuff like malicious editors. If so, isn't a significant part of culture determined by circumstances and thus necessarily that way it is?
Also, why is this discussion on the talk page of long past candidacy? Backsword
No, I hadn't really considered that -- it's a good point. Still, given the changes in culture here even in the last six months, I think that, even though circumstances may have provided a biased framework for the initial culture to develop, the evolution of the site's culture is not constrained by that initial framework. —Tanaric 01:38, 19 February 2008 (UTC)

(RI) I get the feeling that we are meaning quite similar things, yet we use very different term, so I'll try to clarify the terms I use now: Policy is the actual written page on the wiki with that actual wording. Culture can be used for an individual or a society. For an individual, culture is the sum of his morals and trained behavior. For a society, culture is the prevailant morals and trained behavior (should such exist).

To give 3 examples from the real world:

  • Policy is: You are allowed to eat meat.
  • My personal culture is: I am ok with eating meat.
  • My societies culture is: It is ok to eat meat, as long as the meat is not human nor from certain excluded species (cats, dogs, etc).

What is the culture on wikis? The culture is that set of morals/behavior/believes that (almost) everyone agrees on. Almost everyone feels that vandalism is not ok, that is why we have a culture against vandalism. This wiki does not have a culture against (to use 2 recent examples) the word "fuck" or pictures of marijuana. Why? The community is split on whether usage of the word fuck or pictures of marijuana is ok or not. Some people's (personal) believes=culture is that it should be forbidden, other people feel it should be allowed, so we don't have a common obvious stance on this.

This is where policies come in. Why are policies useful? Because they serve to:

  • Help to establish a culture (via discussions while they are written)
  • Notify new users of a pre-existing culture
  • Clarify what happens in cases where no culture exists

The last point is important: It follows from our policies that you can use the word fuck, despite the fact that a significant part of the wiki does not like it. It used to follow from our policies that you could not make guild or build pages here, despite the fact that a significant part of the wiki wanted to make such pages. The last is also an example where "culture" was established: We went from being split on guilds to a state where almost everyone agrees on having guild articles. Therefore the policy was changed.

To come a long way round back to your post: When you lived in Germany, you accepted the general culture that nudity in bathhouses is acceptable, but your personal believes about the matter did not change (or so I presume). However would a large number of US people emigrate to Germany, the culture here would vanish, with a good part of the population being in favor and a good part being against. In that case it would come down to laws (policy) to decide whether you can go to a bathhouse nude.

I should add that in reality, there IS a culture and a law against nude bathing in Germany. Nude bathing is done by a minority at specific days (at which, likewise, you can't bath non-nude). I was just picking up Tanarics example.

As you say yourself, when I joined Guildwiki I had to accept the policies NPA, AGF, YAV, and ADMIN. I also had to accept some godGravewit-given facts, e.g. the horrible leadership structure (I never accepted that and left once it became clear there was no chance of changing it). I did not have to change my personal believes and I could try to influence the common culture (e.g. to accept builds as part of GW).

To sum it up, what I describe as a societies/common culture is close to what you define as a culture. And I agree that such a thing exists here. However one should mind that, it can change, that policies help to convey it to new users and, important, that it does not cover all issues of the wiki, simply because there are topics where the wiki is split in their believes. --Xeeron 13:10, 19 February 2008 (UTC)

To clarify, I meant the single changing room where people of both genders change together, even though swimsuits are worn beyond that point. This was my experience in all swimming areas and bathhouses near Plankstadt, Germany between 1999 and 2002. Apologies for any misrepresentation.
I agree, I think we're saying the same thing. The only significant difference in my mind is that I believe a "policy" article should exist merely to reflect existing culture, while you seem to believe the policy should supercede the culture in case of a disagreement. I believe the disagreement is more dangerous than the behavior, and more worth discussing. Unfortunately, there's no system in place here to allow such a stance, as disagreements in both policy and culture are generally left at just that. There's no governing body (or even a strong celebrity culture) to allow decisive actions on anything but the most one-sided, obvious issues.
Tanaric 00:05, 20 February 2008 (UTC)
If culture goes against policy, the policy should (and will) be changed. So in that sense culture will dominate policy in the long run. However, if something goes against "culture", but even after a long time policy is not changed, I would argue there was no culture in the first place, since the not changing policy shows that a substancial part of the wiki doesnot agree.
So, in the short run, policy dominates culture, because policy is written down culture. Anyone claiming that policy's words do not reflect the current culture has to prove so via consensus first. --Xeeron 10:32, 20 February 2008 (UTC)