Saturday, September 30, 2006

Wikipedia Arbitration, primadonnas, and pointless measures

I made the mistake of looking at the "arbitration" case opened to review the broader circumstances related to my departure from the English Wikipedia. What a train wreck! Mostly, I'm disgusted at the prima donnas sashaying around demanding all sorts of vindictive concessions because their precious egos have been bruised. One of them even went so far as to demand that a block log entry that he finds offensive be purged from history to satisfy his tender sensitivities. Fortunately, Brion stood up for sensibility and flatly declared that that request would be denied. And the prima donnas are on both sides.

The real problem here is that we have people who believe that their contributions to Wikipedia (whether those contributions be in the form of article authorship or administrative support) excuse them from basic social obligations. I'm as guilty of this as the rest of them; the only difference is that I've agreed to stop doing it. They haven't -- and until they do Wikipedia will not get better.

I noticed statements to the effect that I was "hounded off of Wikipedia". There's some truth to that, but not a lot. I left Wikipedia for my own sanity. I was expending too much energy in negative activity, and I decided that this was bad for me. Toward the end there I definitely did things I regret having done, but what's done is done. It's as much as response to my own excesses as to those of others; I am neither totally accepting nor totally avoiding responsibility for my role in creating the current state of affairs.

In the meantime, I'm waiting on the toolserver to have valid database replicas so I can go back to generating statistics on the databases, and in the meantime I'm continuing to work on my reimplementation of MediaWiki in Java. While the latter will probably never reach fruition, I am learning a great deal about the innards of MediaWiki, which might eventually prove useful. Once I get a bit further I might put my work in progress up on an SVN server, assuming I can figure out how to put up SVN, that is....

Update: One of the anonymous trolls who likes to stalk my blog has suggested this summary of the incident. Of course, it is written by one of the rather more unrepentant primadonnas, and should be taken with at least a cowlick's worth of salt....