Thursday, April 24, 2008

Doc quits

The Ostrich Struthio camelus is now farmed, primarily for the low fat meat. The Ostrichs are contained by a 2m high fence with an electrified wire running along the top - perhaps contributing to this bird's contemplation of the fence.An Ostrich, although not one
with its head in the sand. Image
via Wikimedia Commons
Doc Glasgow, one of the leading voices in the effort to improve Wikipedia's handling of Biographies of Living Persons (BLPs) has apparently quit the project. (his goodbye statement, ironically enough, was first posted at Wikipedia Review!)

This is unfortunate. It's tempting to just dismiss this departure as one of many, point to UseMod's GoodBye essay, and say it doesn't matter, the project has thousands of contributors. And in fact that's what I usually do. But Doc's voice was a good one and an important one.

Consider this page on the BLP problem and why it's important, and the outpouring of discussion around it.

Or consider this proposal, for allowing marginally notable biography subjects to "opt out", now marked as rejected, and the discussion around it.

Or consider this proposal, for reversing the default outcome of BLP Article for Deletion (AfD) discussions to delete. It has led to this thread at the BLP page itself, in which SlimVirgin proposes adoption. (the straw poll shows it running at least 65% in favor of adopting it so that's something anyway)

Every one of those is from Doc or had Doc pushing hard for it. And those are just the ones I thought of offhand, there are others. Doc was one of the hardest workers on the BLP mess for quite some time.

Perhaps he just got disheartened at the apparent unwillingness of some in the community to admit that there is a BLP problem and that the current approach isn't handling it. Can't say as I blame him, the level of ostrich in the sand -ism seems quite high there.

If you agree maybe you would consider taking the Responsible Editing pledge? Those undersigned are either:
* already using accounts identifying their real identity (and will not use sock puppets on BLPs)
* OR pledging not to add content concerning living people
* OR intending creating separate accounts, linked to their real identities, for this purpose
I signed it. If you edit Wikipedia, you should consider doing so too.

1 comment:

Majorly said...

When Wikipedia becomes a chore instead of a hobby, it's time for you to stop editing it.