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Offline Lord Wilmore

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On the Notion of Wikipedia
« on: July 15, 2014, 12:21:14 AM »
Until now I have not commented upon the split in the society, other than to say on theflatearthsociety.org that I wish this forum well, and that two active flat Earth forums can only be a good thing.


However, it has come to my attention that the Wikipedia page on the Flat Earth Society is being actively edited so as to exclude reference and/or links to theflatearthsociety.org, and to solely refer to tfes.org. Obviously this is fluid and ongoing, but I am sure someone is aware of what is happening.


No doubt this forum is well run. No doubt it is updated regularly. No doubt its library, and much of its content, is taken from the original site. So be it, no one is making any fuss. But this is a pointless and harmful charade, and it should stop. I doubt the admins/mods here are responsible for this nonsense (at least I hope not), but I hope they will weigh in appropriately. When .net and .org were separate sites we had none of this stupidness. The new site was added to the Wikipedia entry, and both existed alongside one another. This, however, is petty.


I assume this kind of silliness is beneath those running tfes.org, and that it is not the work of Parsifal, PizzaPlanet etc. It's cheap stuff, and it really ought to stop. I would appreciate some input from those with influence.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2014, 02:18:08 PM by Lord Wilmore »
"I want truth for truth's sake, not for the applaud or approval of men. I would not reject truth because it is unpopular, nor accept error because it is popular. I should rather be right and stand alone than run with the multitude and be wrong." - C.S. DeFord

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Offline Particle Person

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2014, 12:31:38 AM »
It is linked to now. I'm guessing that was your edit. I think we can come up with better descriptions than "2004 Flat Earth Society" and "another Flat Earth Society".
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Offline Lord Wilmore

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2014, 12:45:00 AM »
It is linked to now. I'm guessing that was your edit. I think we can come up with better descriptions than "2004 Flat Earth Society" and "another Flat Earth Society".


My edit was just a correction. This crap has been going on for a bit. I'm not even involved - it just keeps changing each time I check. It's utterly juvenile, and I say this as someone who was part of the .net split.
"I want truth for truth's sake, not for the applaud or approval of men. I would not reject truth because it is unpopular, nor accept error because it is popular. I should rather be right and stand alone than run with the multitude and be wrong." - C.S. DeFord

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2014, 12:46:18 AM »
Incoming drama.

Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2014, 12:49:01 AM »
Doesn't Wikipedia log who edits a page?

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Offline Lord Wilmore

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2014, 01:03:42 AM »
Yes it does, but the I am unaware of the usernames involved. In any event, here is Daniel's case


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Flat_Earth_Society#Misleading_edits_directing_visitors_to_an_alternative_site


I really am assuming that the admins are not involved. I'd just like them to weigh in and give out about it, basically. It's not good for anyone.
"I want truth for truth's sake, not for the applaud or approval of men. I would not reject truth because it is unpopular, nor accept error because it is popular. I should rather be right and stand alone than run with the multitude and be wrong." - C.S. DeFord

Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2014, 01:15:04 AM »
Yes it does, but the I am unaware of the usernames involved. In any event, here is Daniel's case


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Flat_Earth_Society#Misleading_edits_directing_visitors_to_an_alternative_site


I really am assuming that the admins are not involved. I'd just like them to weigh in and give out about it, basically. It's not good for anyone.
I doubt it.
Based on the user names I'd guess it's some random user.  Or a troll trying to stir up trouble.

Either way, there must be some mechanism to prevent people from altering a page repeatedly. 

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Offline Snupes

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2014, 02:06:27 AM »
I'm quite sure it's not one of the regulars here, nobody really strikes me as the type to bother with that sort of thing (also I monitor everyone's internet habits ;]), but that is a little odd. I'd agree that it's pretty dumb to not have theflatearthsociety.org listed on there at all, so hopefully whoever's doing that will stop (hint hint, whoever's doing that).

I'm curious as to what you're expecting. I mean, there's not much anyone here can do if someone is editing the page. Did you just want PP or ParsPars to confirm that they aren't the culprits, or...? I'm not insinuating anything, just genuinely want to know.

I got all excited when I saw you signed up that maybe you were joining here. :[
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i also took an online quiz that said i was a giraffe.  and i guess you're dumb enough to believe that i must be because the internet said so.

Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2014, 09:31:20 AM »
Site improvements? Nah mate, not got time for that. Someone editing the Wikipedia article? Daniel's on the case! I find that humorous.

Not sure why anyone would bother doing this, but it makes sense that it's someone here. How long has this been going on?

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Offline Pete Svarrior

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2014, 11:44:06 AM »
Well, what a nasty way to meet you again. I was hoping our first conversation after the split would be somewhat different. My two cents:

Until now I have not commented upon the split in the society
Not in public, at least.

I wish this forum well
Ha. Pardon my skepticism. If this is true, however, then perhaps we should have some more transparent (and hopefully more fruitful) talks about the inter-site co-operation you've brought up in the past instead of bickering about something that's happening outside of either forum?

So be it, no one is making any fuss.
Except for that time when Daniel demanded that we change our forum theme, despite owning no rights to it and us having received express permission from the author? Or the time when JD said any "advertisement" of the new site on the old site will lead to bans? C'mon Wilmore, you guys are making exactly as much fuss as you humanly can. You might not be making much of a fuss personally, but the rest of your team made sure to pick up the slack.

I would appreciate some input from those with influence.
Much like everyone else, I don't see what you expect from us here. The Wikipedia edits are not our doing, nor do we know whose doing it is. Daniel's case appears to be "my society is official and the other one isn't". As people pointed out in the edit history and on the talk page, Daniel is not in the position to decide things like that. Hilariously enough, one of his pieces of evidence is that he has 1000 fb likes. Well, we have 2700. Are we "official" now?

I'm guessing you're expecting me to say that I don't condone editing Wikipedia in our favour. I won't say that. I also won't say that I do condone it. Wikipedia is not this forum (nor is it any other resource under our administration), and we do not police people's behaviour beyond enforcing some very basic rules regarding our own services. That is probably the biggest difference between how our site is managed differently from yours in a non-technical manner, and something we're rather proud of.

I'm sorry, Wilmore, but as far as I'm concerned, you came to the wrong people with the wrong message. Addressing it on Wikipedia is the way to go. Perhaps others in charge will view it differently. Meanwhile, enjoy your stay on the forum, and if at any point you'd like to get involved, please let us know. We'd be happy to have you on board, and we view people's involvement with the other forum as irrelevant.

I'm also sorry for my overall negative tone, but you coming here and saying that you wish us well after your team has been doing everything in their power to be a pain to us is genuinely making me angry. I do trust that you, personally, have no ill intent, but... yeah.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 11:48:08 AM by pizaaplanet »
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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #10 on: July 15, 2014, 12:04:03 PM »
It is linked to now. I'm guessing that was your edit. I think we can come up with better descriptions than "2004 Flat Earth Society" and "another Flat Earth Society".


My edit was just a correction. This crap has been going on for a bit. I'm not even involved - it just keeps changing each time I check. It's utterly juvenile, and I say this as someone who was part of the .net split.

Oh yes I meant I thought the correction was your doing, not the dastardly mischief.
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Offline Parsifal

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #11 on: July 15, 2014, 12:23:26 PM »
I'm with pizaaplanet. Let the Wikipedia administration mediate conflict on Wikipedia; they are the best qualified to do so.

On a lighter note, I'd like to welcome you to tfes.org, Wilmore. I do hope you'll stay for more than the inter-forum political squabbles.
when you try to mock anyone while also running the flat earth society. Lol

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Offline Lord Wilmore

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2014, 01:29:29 PM »
Well, what a nasty way to meet you again. I was hoping our first conversation after the split would be somewhat different.


Well, we actually weren't having a conversation as of yet, and I specifically mentioned that I doubted you were involved. I don't really see how that's nasty. Though perhaps I'm getting the wrong end of the stick here and you just mean it's a sort of nasty business to have to open with, in which case I agree. I can honestly say I have no desire to be talking about this kind of petty stuff. My guess is that it's just some idiot here who thinks they're helping out, when in fact they're just causing trouble for everyone.


Until now I have not commented upon the split in the society
Not in public, at least.

I wish this forum well
Ha. Pardon my skepticism. If this is true, however, then perhaps we should have some more transparent (and hopefully more fruitful) talks about the inter-site co-operation you've brought up in the past instead of bickering about something that's happening outside of either forum?


I actually have commented upon it in public. Here's what I said:


Obviously the last 6 months haven't exactly been great on this side, either. I'm really sorry I wasn't around to help the community out during that time. Honestly, I just couldn't, but I still feel guilty about it and don't exactly feel like the greatest FES VP in the world right now. Though I probably am by default. The split is a thing that has happened, and I'm neither going to lament over it or pontificate about it. Obviously I'd like us all to be one big happy family and work out our issues (hey hey, seamless thematic link between this paragraph and the last!), but that may not be possible, and I wish those involved in tfes.org the very best. Having two lively FE sites on the internet is no bad thing really, and that's all I have to say on the matter.


I wasn't (and couldn't) be around when the split happened, and all in all I do think it's a bad thing and that there were better options. But the fact is there are two forums, and we may as well get along. That's always been my view, as per the above, and I would like to hope that there can be a reconciliation eventually. The .org/.net split was healed after all, and that worked out well for everyone (especially me, I got loads of powers).


Except for that time when Daniel demanded that we change our forum theme, despite owning no rights to it and us having received express permission from the author? Or the time when JD said any "advertisement" of the new site on the old site will lead to bans? C'mon Wilmore, you guys are making exactly as much fuss as you humanly can. You might not be making much of a fuss personally, but the rest of your team made sure to pick up the slack.


Advertising one forum on another is usually not allowed on forums, especially smaller/independent ones. Like, that was a rule on every video game forum I was ever on, and I really don't think you should be surprised about that. Indeed, advertising other sites is against the rules anyway, and has been for years. And the mass avatar changing wasn't exactly classy, was it? Regarding the forum theme, I'm not aware of what exactly was said or how things were handled, but I think it's fair enough that if you guys want to do your own thing, then maybe it should be, you know, your own thing. And not just lift the look and content of the old site.


Much like everyone else, I don't see what you expect from us here. The Wikipedia edits are not our doing, nor do we know whose doing it is. Daniel's case appears to be "my society is official and the other one isn't". As people pointed out in the edit history and on the talk page, Daniel is not in the position to decide things like that. Hilariously enough, one of his pieces of evidence is that he has 1000 fb likes. Well, we have 2700. Are we "official" now?

I'm guessing you're expecting me to say that I don't condone editing Wikipedia in our favour. I won't say that. I also won't say that I do condone it. Wikipedia is not this forum (nor is it any other resource under our administration), and we do not police people's behaviour beyond enforcing some very basic rules regarding our own services. That is probably the biggest difference between how our site is managed differently from yours in a non-technical manner, and something we're rather proud of.


Look, I know it might sound like a good thing not to 'police' behaviour outside the site, and that's fine if all you're running is a forum. But you're claiming to be the Flat Earth Society. That's more than a forum, and like it or not, the actions people take on your behalf reflect on you, and are to a degree and in a sense your responsibility.


Consider: if I started making racist diatribes on other forums in a personal capacity, Daniel would probably have to disassociate both himself and the society from me. If I were found to have, say, launched an attack on this site in an attempt to give ours an advantage, he would probably have to do the same. If more junior members of our forum were found to have been attacking your site, I would distance myself from those actions and probably issue bans. Those actions would reflect on the society, and even if I wished it wasn't our problem, it would be whether I liked it or not.


I'm not asking anyone to do anything other than what should be obvious: namely discourage bad behaviour that is obviously being carried out by members of your forum and society on behalf of your forum and society. If you're just running a forum and not a society, fine, you can be hands-off. But you are claiming to be 'a' (if not 'the') Flat Earth Society, and as long as that is the case you cannot simply wash your hands of what your members do in your name. Sorry, but that's just how things work, and you're kidding yourself if you think otherwise.


In terms of concrete actions, yeah, Wikipedia is obviously the correct route for getting it fixed, and I don't expect anyone here to get involved beyond the above. But I do think this needs to be flagged as bad behaviour that is discouraged. At the very least it is not conducive to good relations between the two sites, which is surely in everyone's interest.


I'm sorry, Wilmore, but as far as I'm concerned, you came to the wrong people with the wrong message. Addressing it on Wikipedia is the way to go. Perhaps others in charge will view it differently. Meanwhile, enjoy your stay on the forum, and if at any point you'd like to get involved, please let us know. We'd be happy to have you on board, and we view people's involvement with the other forum as irrelevant.

I'm also sorry for my overall negative tone, but you coming here and saying that you wish us well after your team has been doing everything in their power to be a pain to us is genuinely making me angry. I do trust that you, personally, have no ill intent, but... yeah.


I will state the obvious: nobody really trusts anybody (your stated trust in me aside - I do take that as genuine, and thanks) at this point, and as a result there's a lot of frustration on both sides. I'm confident that if you think about this impartially, you'll understand why this incident irritates Daniel, and I'm sure you feel you have legitimate grievances too. I'm not here to rail against this forum, and I meant what I said above.


Regarding inter-site cooperation, I am obviously open to suggestions. I was in touch with Tintagel a while back about some kind of content-based interaction, but I haven't heard back from her in a while. Looking at her profile here it seems she's been inactive for a bit (which of course is disgraceful and shameful and something I condemn in the strongest possible terms), so that's why that didn't go anywhere. If you or Parsifal have any ideas, you can always email me at flatearthtoday@gmail.com. Realistically I probably won't be coming here very often - loyalties and politics aside, I have enough difficulty logging into one flat Earth forum on a regular basis. Two might be a bit of a push.


If anyone wants to contact me about anything, really, you'll get a warm reception.


Oh yes I meant I thought the correction was your doing, not the dastardly mischief.


I think at this point we're talking about totally different things, largely because I completely misunderstood what you were talking about. I was referring to an edit of my original post above. But hi!


I'm with pizaaplanet. Let the Wikipedia administration mediate conflict on Wikipedia; they are the best qualified to do so.

On a lighter note, I'd like to welcome you to tfes.org, Wilmore. I do hope you'll stay for more than the inter-forum political squabbles.


As per the above, I am unlikely to be around much, and much as I hate to say it, most of my time here will probably be spent blustering in a formal capacity. But who knows, it might be constructive blustering. And send me an email if you have ideas etc.
"I want truth for truth's sake, not for the applaud or approval of men. I would not reject truth because it is unpopular, nor accept error because it is popular. I should rather be right and stand alone than run with the multitude and be wrong." - C.S. DeFord

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Offline Rama Set

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #13 on: July 15, 2014, 02:35:39 PM »
Perhaps this is a matter for the Zetetic Council?
You don't get races of anything ... accept people.

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #14 on: July 15, 2014, 03:24:26 PM »
Perhaps this is a matter for the Zetetic Council?

Why do people keep saying this about every single little issue that pops up?  No, it isn't, and the sooner we all forget about this stupid Zetetic Council thing the better.

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Offline Rama Set

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #15 on: July 15, 2014, 03:26:25 PM »
Perhaps this is a matter for the Zetetic Council?

Why do people keep saying this about every single little issue that pops up?  No, it isn't, and the sooner we all forget about this stupid Zetetic Council thing the better.

This seems like the exact reason why the zetetic council was created.  Whether it has been effective in practice or not is another issue.
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Offline Snupes

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #16 on: July 15, 2014, 04:43:01 PM »
And the mass avatar changing wasn't exactly classy, was it?

Yeah that was my bad. We were quite upset and I wanted some way to show we were serious since we were getting kind of a "lol nobody's going to actually do anything about it" tone from some of the admins and that seemed like a good idea. I don't know that I really regret it, but I'll pretty openly admit it wasn't the classiest option. It was an effective one, though.
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Offline junker

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #17 on: July 15, 2014, 06:29:22 PM »
And the mass avatar changing wasn't exactly classy, was it?

Yeah that was my bad. We were quite upset and I wanted some way to show we were serious since we were getting kind of a "lol nobody's going to actually do anything about it" tone from some of the admins and that seemed like a good idea. I don't know that I really regret it, but I'll pretty openly admit it wasn't the classiest option. It was an effective one, though.

I certainly approved of it after the train wreck that caused the issue to begin with.

I find it interesting that anyone over there is now interested in good relations between the two societies, it has only been 7 months...

Anyway, like the others said, we don't harbor ill will toward anyone over there.
Wait, is Thork gay or does he just have a thing for lipstick?

Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #18 on: July 15, 2014, 07:39:35 PM »
Perhaps this is a matter for the Zetetic Council?

Why do people keep saying this about every single little issue that pops up?  No, it isn't, and the sooner we all forget about this stupid Zetetic Council thing the better.
Honestly I wouldn't be surprised if Thork was behind this whole thing. 
Which would mean we should vote his ass out.

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Offline Pete Svarrior

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Re: Wikipedia
« Reply #19 on: July 15, 2014, 08:27:28 PM »
Though perhaps I'm getting the wrong end of the stick here and you just mean it's a sort of nasty business to have to open with, in which case I agree.
That is all I meant. Sorry if I was unclear.

I wasn't (and couldn't) be around when the split happened, and all in all I do think it's a bad thing and that there were better options. But the fact is there are two forums, and we may as well get along. That's always been my view, as per the above, and I would like to hope that there can be a reconciliation eventually. The .org/.net split was healed after all, and that worked out well for everyone (especially me, I got loads of powers).
Then we have essentially the same intentions, you and I. None of us really wanted to set up a new forum, but we felt forced to do so, given that we weren't willing to continue dealing with the old site's issues, and Daniel/JD weren't willing to let competent and willing people contribute.

Advertising one forum on another is usually not allowed on forums, especially smaller/independent ones. Like, that was a rule on every video game forum I was ever on, and I really don't think you should be surprised about that. Indeed, advertising other sites is against the rules anyway, and has been for years. And the mass avatar changing wasn't exactly classy, was it? Regarding the forum theme, I'm not aware of what exactly was said or how things were handled, but I think it's fair enough that if you guys want to do your own thing, then maybe it should be, you know, your own thing. And not just lift the look and content of the old site.
We're going to have to agree to disagree on that one. It is not common practice at all, not in the way you guys have done it - you had no rules against advertising other fora, and other fora (smaller and bigger than this one) have previously been advertised. JD picked on us. The fact that you guys cannot follow your own rules (mostly because you can't make them) is part of the old site's problem.

We were never trying to "do our own thing" - we're providing a competent forum for the Flat Earth Society. The only reason we even have our own logo is because Daniel forced us to. It was never our intention to split the identity of FES, so if you have any complaints about that, take them to the orchestrator of it - Daniel.

Look, I know it might sound like a good thing not to 'police' behaviour outside the site, and that's fine if all you're running is a forum. But you're claiming to be the Flat Earth Society.
We are a Flat Earth Society. Daniel forced us to be one by demanding the identity split rather than simply acknowledging that his members chose to make a forum of their own. Again, wrong complaint to the wrong people. I disagree with Daniel's demands as much as you do, but complaining about them to us won't help anyone.

That's more than a forum, and like it or not, the actions people take on your behalf reflect on you, and are to a degree and in a sense your responsibility.
I dunno about "people", but I understand that you do. I'm sorry that you do, but we do not take responsibility for the actions of people we do not know.

Consider: if I started making racist diatribes on other forums in a personal capacity, Daniel would probably have to disassociate both himself and the society from me.
Yes, Daniel's lack of understanding on how to run a forum is part of the reason we set up a better forum. I'm sorry, but any invocation of WWDD? (What Would Daniel Do?) is not likely to make me see things your way.

If I were found to have, say, launched an attack on this site in an attempt to give ours an advantage, he would probably have to do the same. If more junior members of our forum were found to have been attacking your site, I would distance myself from those actions and probably issue bans. Those actions would reflect on the society, and even if I wished it wasn't our problem, it would be whether I liked it or not.
That makes more sense, but no one's forum was attacked. Wikipedia has its own moderation, administration, and a dispute resolution system. It is not my intention to interfere with that, and I do not feel qualified to even attempt intervening with it.

In Wikipedia's case, if you feel that an article is being continuously vandalised, you can request that it be partially locked (for example, to restrict it to autoconfirmed users only) - that way (assuming you're in the right - I currently disagree with that, but I also see no reason to get involved either way) you can end any issues for good without invoking unnecessary and unconstructive drama.

I'm not asking anyone to do anything other than what should be obvious: namely discourage bad behaviour that is obviously being carried out by members of your forum and society on behalf of your forum and society. If you're just running a forum and not a society, fine, you can be hands-off. But you are claiming to be 'a' (if not 'the') Flat Earth Society, and as long as that is the case you cannot simply wash your hands of what your members do in your name. Sorry, but that's just how things work, and you're kidding yourself if you think otherwise.
The administration runs the forum. The Zetetic Council is meant to run the Society, but it's currently facing a bit of a stalemate. Our sincere intention is to run a forum (you can have a look at our early posts here - it should be pretty clear). We're being forced to run a Society of our own by Daniel, who is unwilling to talk to us and ignores communication from us. Don't like it? Get Daniel to start giving a damn, or exercise your Vice-President powers and fix it yourself. We can't fix Daniel's political mess ourselves.

In terms of concrete actions, yeah, Wikipedia is obviously the correct route for getting it fixed, and I don't expect anyone here to get involved beyond the above. But I do think this needs to be flagged as bad behaviour that is discouraged. At the very least it is not conducive to good relations between the two sites, which is surely in everyone's interest.
There have been many things that were not conductive to good relations between the two sites, some of them I already highlighted for you. We're not on good terms right now, as much as it displeases us. If you'd like to change that, trust me, everyone will be happy to see that. But for that to happen, a lot of words said are gonna have to be taken back, at least as far as I'm concerned (again, others in charge may disagree).

Personally, I do not like the idea of Wikipedia vandalism. As an FES administrator, I have no interest in voicing an official stance either way. This is simply not our remit - it's Wikipedia's.

I will state the obvious: nobody really trusts anybody (your stated trust in me aside - I do take that as genuine, and thanks) at this point, and as a result there's a lot of frustration on both sides. I'm confident that if you think about this impartially, you'll understand why this incident irritates Daniel, and I'm sure you feel you have legitimate grievances too.
Of course, he has all the right to be irritated (and, indeed, was extremely open about stating it through his actions). It's just that after months of ignoring problems, he's not really in the position where his irritation is of much interest to me.

I'm not here to rail against this forum, and I meant what I said above.
Much appreciated. As I said, I do trust you personally, but the other forum has done a lot of things that were perceived as very aggressive. Coming and asking that we do your forum favours is just... not tactful, sorry.

I would like to hope that there can be a reconciliation eventually. The .org/.net split was healed after all, and that worked out well for everyone (especially me, I got loads of powers).
Personally, I am open to talks of reconciliation. Sadly, all that your side has offered so far is demands of surrender - personally, I can do nothing but offer a "tough love" approach to those. If you hope for a reconciliation, you need to accept that both sides will need to make concessions. We won't let some guy with a fake surname bully us with fake threats, sorry.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2014, 09:00:56 PM by pizaaplanet »
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