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Offline Tom Bishop

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Open the wiki to additional contributors
« on: July 24, 2018, 10:05:57 AM »
I would like to discuss the possibility of opening the Wiki to other contributors. There are many good investigations going on. We need to document the models fully, lest this information be lost, and the Wiki is the place to do it.

I have been reading the works of sandokhan, and I think he generally has many things right and has some good, interesting information. The Dual Earth, sure. I wouldn't mind if he uses the Wiki to promote his materials.

I certainly do want all of their works in the wiki. While some may have drastically different ideas on the nature of the earth, for the most part I think we can all agree that the general "top level" goal will be to support the general model. I support the bi-polar model, as does sandokhan, but I'm not going to just replace it in the FAQ without wider agreement. It also needs to first be more fully documented, which it is not.

We should probably set some loose rules:

    - If you are editing content of a page you did not create yourself, leave a comment in the comment field under the edit box

    - You are welcome to add on your own theories to the pages in the wiki, or make your own page

    - For fundamentally different models, you should create your own sections and sub pages

    - People may generally frown if you drastically change around the FAQ without some community agreement.

    - Not a rule necessarily, but making a post in the forums about new content will help you refine your ideas and show where people get lost in understanding of your explanation

Does this sound agreeable?
« Last Edit: July 25, 2018, 12:38:48 AM by Tom Bishop »

Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2018, 10:16:47 AM »
My 2 cents, if I may.

I think this is a good idea, as there is no coherent FE model it would help people get more of a feel for competing theories. Right now the Wiki does seem like a bit of a love letter to Rowbotham.

If it was clearer that there are competing models and who champions which one then that might be helpful. You favour perspective as a cause of sunset, Pete favours UA. It doesn't matter who actually, but it would be good to know that these are competing theories for that. So maybe there should be a sunset page and different FE theories to explain that outlined. And so on.
"This is literally just a few people talking about it for a brief time every day on their spare time. That’s the flat earth movement" - Tom Bishop

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Online Pete Svarrior

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #2 on: July 24, 2018, 10:26:43 AM »
I would like to discuss the possibility of opening the Wiki to other contributors.
The Wiki is already open to contributors. It always has been, and will always remain so.

I have actively reached out to people who might want an account. Sandokhan was one of them, but the only response I was able to get from him is that we must abandon our model and replace the FAQ with one of his own, and some advice on merging the societies. He wouldn't even acknowledge the question of whether or not he'd like a Wiki account.

JRowe's response, in brief, was that he'd rather run his own Wiki, but that we're free to draw content from it as we please.

On an entirely unrelated note, I also spoke to Jane on the other forum who gave permission for us to integrate some of her FEIR posts, should we find them useful.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 10:36:57 AM by Pete Svarrior »
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2018, 10:44:01 AM »
My response to Sandokhan and JRowe is that we do want to replace the FAQ with many of their elements. We just need good pages to link to.  We want their models described in clear and comprehensive terms. The Wiki is a base to collect the information. The FAQ can easily inform that there are different models and ideas, with links, and eventually morph into wherever truth follows. The model in the FAQ is merely a starting point.

When Sandokhan puts in his contents about Sagnac and the Michelson–Morley experiments, and whatnot, I'm going to link it everywhere I can.

Sandokhan has some different ideas on the distance to the sun, and this is a place to organize those ideas and the collected evidence. We're not going to let something sit if it is a more reasonable explanation with better evidence.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 10:48:36 AM by Tom Bishop »

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2018, 10:48:00 AM »
You are correct. Nonetheless, there's nothing more I can do. The Wiki is already open to contributors, and the individuals you have in mind have both turned down an offer of an account/documenting their theories in the Wiki.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 10:49:55 AM by Pete Svarrior »
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2018, 11:04:12 AM »
Maybe it just needs to be more clear for them:

Much of the model in the Wiki is basically my interpretation of Rowbotham. I am the one who wrote most of those pages, based on my own ideas, Rowbotham, and the loose community consensus from the other forum over previous years. I don't care at all if your ideas accompany or supersede my own. In fact, I encourage it. It's not hard to pick out areas where there may be more evidence for a different interpretation of things. If you put in your evidence and interpretation for something, even at the very top of one of the pages, there will likely be zero disagreement. No one is going to delete your content.

For the FAQ we present to the public, we just need some basic community consensus first. We can't have a mish-mash of monopole, bi-polar, and dual earth models in that one. Right? We can certainly link to the other models in there to start, strengthen our current pages for the general model elsewhere, and create new pages as need be. Evidence will be collected and winds will shift.

Documenting is the first step.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 04:57:26 PM by Tom Bishop »

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2018, 01:14:12 PM »
Perhaps. I certainly think the FAQ should be an accurate representation of Rowbotham's model. It is my understanding that most modern serious FE'ers remain somewhat close to it, and understanding it is a good starting point.

The Wiki as a whole might be a bit tougher. For example, you used to subscribe to what is more-or-less Rowbotham's model - that's currently most of the Wiki. I'm largely on the same page, although I'm leaning towards EA.

Does the addition of EA constitute a whole separate model? I'd argue not, it's a relatively small alteration. Thus, the current approach of having a separate page on EA makes sense (though that page does need a lot of expanding).

Because of that, I think the "mish-mash" is somewhat unavoidable. I, for one, would love to include more material from other models, but I do not want to be the one to write out explanations and definitions I don't fully understand or believe. And since proponents of other models don't want to do it either, I've found myself at a stalemate.

Personally, my current focus is on individuals. I'd like to write a page on Eric Dubay, Mark Sargent, etc. to acknowledge their contributions to FET (regardless of any disagreements we may have with at least one of them). I want to cover subjects people actually search for online. I think making the Wiki a very good entry point is well within reach, but making it a comprehensive resource is probably beyond our resources unless others want to join our efforts.
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2018, 09:51:12 PM »
Perhaps. I certainly think the FAQ should be an accurate representation of Rowbotham's model. It is my understanding that most modern serious FE'ers remain somewhat close to it, and understanding it is a good starting point.

I think TFES is mostly to blame for the standard model. We did not have all of the information when the movement restarted. Unfortunately, the works from Lady Blount's Universal Zetetic Society did not really become available online until relatively recently. If we had all of the literature and research from the start I feel we would likely have been a bi-polar Flat Earth Society from the beginning and a true continuation which spent years further developing those theories rather than the monopole one. They really did research a lot of the issues after Rowbotham, as a continuing research organization, keeping up with current scientific developments such as discovery of the South Pole. I don't think Samuel Shenton had much of the UZS information available to him, either.

The history of the society is still a bit of a mystery and we are sort of still piecing the it all together from the bits and pieces we have. Before Rowbotham's Earth Not a Globe it seems the Flat Earth model had three poles. Rowotham's monopole model may have been an empirical decision for the time, due to lack of data. Figuring out the workings of those other models is a continuing project that will evolve in the Wiki.

Rowbotham's standard model will stand, however, until another one is sufficiently ready to take its place, and there is community buy-in. I think everyone can agree that this is reasonable. Most of the things we talk about don't have anything to do with the particular topology model used, and I don't see why it would prevent anyone from wanting to contribute.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 11:28:01 PM by Tom Bishop »

Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #8 on: July 25, 2018, 01:02:18 AM »
My 2 cents.

The FAQ is meant to be deliberately vague. It is also meant to be provocative in order to get you to create an account and make that first post to start a discussion. As long as its vague and provocative its working. I'm sure it could be more of both, however.

I disagree with the bi-polar model ... I think its harder to defend and harder for new people to understand and start talking about. It also doesn't match our logos, doesn't match people's general perception of flat earth theory and doesn't capture the imagination in the same way. Its more likely you first considered a flat earth from Terry Pratchett than Lady Blount. I'm not saying never speak of the bi-polar model again ... but I'm not sure it should be the flagship model for considering earth flat. Start with the basics.
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Offline JRowe

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2018, 06:46:08 PM »
My 2 cents, as everyone else is saying that.

Part of my beef with the current wiki is that it seems to be going in the wrong direction. It deals more with listing arguments than principles, and when principles are defined it's rather vague. For example, there's a page on the Coriolis Effect but not on celestial gears: that gives the implication both that it's the only response, and limits the explanation.
Listing arguments is an impractical way to explain a model, or give anything for people to get their teeth into. It provokes, as Thork says, but it doesn't really explain. You need a grounding in basic FET before you can really understand a lot of the responses to the arguments, otherwise it's a lot of what-ifs and maybe-nots. Getting people to post is a good thing, getting people to post the same questions is not. Plus honestly I'd question how much of the wiki is read by newcomers.
EAT was mentioned earlier, but the EAT page there currently appears to just be a copy/pasted forum post that doesn't actually explain what the electromagnetic accelerator is, how it works, doesn't tie it to UA, references experiments that aren't explained or given, and mentions a sentient pizza that's just going to baffle any newcomer rather than make them understand.

If you have a good explanation of independent principles, from UA to celestial gravitation to DET's aether to anything from Sandokhan, that alone can be used to answer questions. If celestial gears are explained, so is the Coriolis effect, to use the above example. Instead of centering everything around RET and what REers believe and argue, it seems much more practical to focus on the FE principles themselves, and then have a page that lists responses to arguments.
And as far as the mishmash goes, categories solve that, or alternatively other pages. You have a page on the Neo-Classical Model for example, but it doesn't bother to link to any pages that exist to explain the components.

Like Pete said, I'm focusing on my own wiki for now. I'm not opposed to helping, maybe writing directly for it at a later date, but at the current stage it's hard to determine what exactly the wiki is trying to do or be.
I've been planning to go through all the pages at some point just as reference for my own work, to see if there's information I missed or major topics to include, if it'd help for reference I could reference the pages that to me seem most in need of improvement, whether it's refocusing the Coriolis Effect page to actually be about celestial gears, or mentioning that the Neo-Classical page should link to others, or that the EAT page needs clarification, or that the Lady Blount page which is just a quote from the literature should probably just be merged with the Bedford Level page.
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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #10 on: July 25, 2018, 07:33:00 PM »
Plus honestly I'd question how much of the wiki is read by newcomers.
I can elucidate on that a little bit.

Looking at data from the past 2 months, 87.8% of the Wiki's traffic is from newcomers, the rest being return visitors. The vast majority (70%) only ever land on the FAQ, and only spend enough time on it to carelessly skim through. Visits to other pages are almost entirely by referral - someone asks a question and gets directed to a page that potentially deals with it.

If you're curious about anything specific with regards to people's browsing patters, please feel free to ask. We have years of Google Analytics data at our disposal

I think part of this comes down to understanding our audience, and deciding on our focus. If we're going for depth (i.e. we want for those few people who are truly interested to have a very solid response), then JRowe's approach is absolutely correct. If we're aiming for a wide reach (i.e. take people from not having any clue that the Flat Earth Theory exists to having a surface-level understanding), then Thork's suggestion of beefing up the FAQ is our best hope.

In an ideal world, we would be trying to accomplish both these things, but we have to face a simple fact - right now, the Wiki is largely a two-man effort, and we're both spread very thin. My response to that is to try and optimise - I try to spot subjects that people are actively looking for, and I hope to write decent articles on them. As I said, currently my focus is probably going to be individuals and the FAQ.
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Offline JRowe

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #11 on: July 25, 2018, 08:29:38 PM »
I think part of this comes down to understanding our audience, and deciding on our focus. If we're going for depth (i.e. we want for those few people who are truly interested to have a very solid response), then JRowe's approach is absolutely correct. If we're aiming for a wide reach (i.e. take people from not having any clue that the Flat Earth Theory exists to having a surface-level understanding), then Thork's suggestion of beefing up the FAQ is our best hope.

In an ideal world, we would be trying to accomplish both these things, but we have to face a simple fact - right now, the Wiki is largely a two-man effort, and we're both spread very thin. My response to that is to try and optimise - I try to spot subjects that people are actively looking for, and I hope to write decent articles on them. As I said, currently my focus is probably going to be individuals and the FAQ.
I don't think those two are mutually exclusive, the FAQ is only going to be helped if it can link to more comprehensive breakdowns. Plus being able to link to better articles like that has the advantage of potentially stirring up more interest when they see that there is more information available.

Pages themselves I think should typically be focused more on FE mechanism than RE argument. The search function would find it either way, and it makes it easy to implement multiple explanations. I can only speak for myself, but part of the reason not many people want to spend time working on the wiki is because what's there isn't especially inspiring as far as a useful resource goes, ditto for why most people don't go much further than the FAQ and why there aren't so many referrals.
I could ramble for a while about the FAQ, but most of that isn't really on topic.

What might help is if a list of desired/planned pages and changes was up somewhere, or a thread dedicated to people saying what it is they want to see (with the first post kept updated). That way the goals are clear and defined, and more than that those that are interested could submit an article. Plus people can post oddities/suggestions, such as the George Scott fallacy page mispelling arguments as 'arguements.' When the plan is more concrete, I think that'd drum up more support. You can still prioritize the FAQ, but being able to link to further reading or some such thing wouldn't hurt that either, and having an indication of what people want to see as far as the rest goes would help in the long term. Hell, I'd happily submit a few bits and pieces if I could for that, though I'd put it on mine too.
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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #12 on: July 25, 2018, 10:05:00 PM »
the George Scott fallacy page mispelling arguments as 'arguements.'
Fixed, together with another misspelling of "irrelevant".

This is kind of the purpose of the Flat Earth Projects board - to provide a destination for suggestions on the Wiki and other activity. I guess this thread shows that it's at least kinda-sorta working. I do agree that a list could be a good idea - perhaps as a sticky here.

Getting more people involved in fixing the Wiki should always be the main priority, that much is for sure. I still hope that you will join us soon. In the meantime, I'll carry on doing my best to advance things, as slow as it may be.
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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2018, 10:16:38 PM »
I think you can get too tied up in answering questions in the wiki. Yes, round earth noobs have been asking forever for a fully fleshed out version of FET. A unifying theory ... and once they have that, endless threads about the same narrow band of topics forever more.

Do we want a unifying theory of FET? Nope. Do we want to answer questions in more depth in the wiki? Nope.

What we want is to hit search terms and drive traffic. Nothing more. We don't want to be handcuffed by a wiki someone else once wrote and neither will the FErs that come after us. So you think the earth is infinite ... and you can take a thread that way. Maybe I want to make it finite and take another thread in a different direction. Maybe I want the thread to investigate gravity, or maybe UA, maybe a buoyancy theory not bound by gravity. Vague lets each individual go where they want. I like celestial gears, you may like the notion of a malevolent god, someone else might subscribe to whirling balls bound by gravity.

I think the wiki should focus on what is hot ... what do people google, what topics are being pushed out by other outlets and how do we get that traffic. We already have resources like ENaG and Shenton's papers and a library of other things if people want that ... the wiki is just a gateway to finding thork the flat earth society and making your first post.
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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2018, 10:23:50 PM »
That, to me, feels like pushing things towards the other extreme too much. Even if your only priority is driving people to the forum, there is merit in having a better Wiki. Think about it this way: the Wiki is what mainstream media outlets tend to cite when they want to refer to us. Not forum threads - those are too much effort for a random journo.

Ultimately, however, the distributed nature of our Society could be a strength here. If you think the Wiki should be going in a certain direction, then I'm happy to set you up with an account and have you show us what you can do. Obviously any super-drastic changes should be discussed first, but if you want to help with, say, writing an article about Eric Dubay (a reasonably common search term which currently just draws people to this thread), the power is yours.
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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #15 on: July 25, 2018, 10:34:39 PM »
A separate media pack is very much needed. Assets that the journos can use, some snappy quotes and explanations, a quick synopsis of the theory ... that's not a wiki though. That's a proper media centre.

https://www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk/

See, images, videos, logos, bits of news, summaries

http://mediacentre.britishairways.com/

Its a pretty standard format.


If we ever have some major news, we could even put that on the wire and syndicate it
https://www.prnewswire.com/

Will turn up all over the internet.

But the wiki ... its google bait as far as I can see. But hey, opinions are like arseholes.
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Offline JRowe

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #16 on: July 25, 2018, 10:44:48 PM »
Do we want to answer questions in more depth in the wiki? Nope.
I have to disagree. If the questions are answered already in depth in the wiki, and the wiki is easily navigable, then sure some noobs will more than likely still demand answers, but they can be linked to it. Some will inevitably kick up at fuss at anything FET, but they'll either be pointed back to the wiki or they'll bring up something new.
I agree that the wiki can be used to get support for the forum, but if it's developed well it can work to improve the level of conversation on the forum too.

This is kind of the purpose of the Flat Earth Projects board - to provide a destination for suggestions on the Wiki and other activity. I guess this thread shows that it's at least kinda-sorta working. I do agree that a list could be a good idea - perhaps as a sticky here.

Getting more people involved in fixing the Wiki should always be the main priority, that much is for sure. I still hope that you will join us soon. In the meantime, I'll carry on doing my best to advance things, as slow as it may be.
Looking over the pages, honestly a lot of my issues are stylistic; you have multiple pages that cover very similar ground (eg: one page that says what ENaG is, and another that just copy-pastes the whole text despite the first linking to the original), or that give related arguments, and there's no way to go between them. One of the issues you raised with me with my wiki was that it dilutes information between multiple sources, and that's what's happening on the wiki as it is; for example, there's a total of eight pages that go into problems with NASA, and no connection between them. Anyone who's interested in that subject is going to either hope they get lucky, spend ages going through every page, or miss huge chunks. (I could PM you the ones I noticed if you wanted).
It doesn't help that there are a number of articles with rather verbose titles for a wiki; I imagine they're written by someone more used to a blog format.

Just speaking generally here, but if you want to garner more support for the wiki it might help if the goals and style of it were more clear and defined. Is it meant to serve more as a collection of blog posts than a typical wiki? Or is it meant to serve as a navigable collection of data on various aspects? At the moment it's halfway between the two, and I imagine that's a factor in why it ended up so poorly maintained. It isn't completely clear what it is.
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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #17 on: July 26, 2018, 06:37:18 AM »
We're on the same page here. I picked up the Wiki in a much worse state than it currently is, but with very limited resources I can only push it forward so slowly. I can't even say with confidence that I've read every page of the Wiki.

There are many small, disjointed articles that should honestly either be removed or merged with larger articles, I agree for sure. If you do spot easy fixes like those typos or pages that can be uncontroversially merged, just ping me a message.
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Offline Tom Bishop

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Re: Open the wiki to additional contributors
« Reply #18 on: July 26, 2018, 04:40:03 PM »
Lets just make JRowe an account and send him his credentials. He said that he would be interested in making improvements and changes.