This is an archive page, covering general talk on my user talk page from 19 February to 5 April 2006. Please do not edit this page - if you wish to bring up a topic, copy the relevant portion into a new section on the current page. Thanks! --GreenReaper(talk)
Just letting you know, I'm moving to another city on or around the 24th of this month, most likely New Orleans. Because of this, I won't be available regularly for a while after this week. -- Siege 22:10, 19 February 2006 (UTC)
- Don't worry about it - people come and go (and usually come back again :-) all the time. Good luck with the move - I hope you have great fortune in the Big Easy, or wherever you end up. :-) --GreenReaper(talk) 00:01, 20 February 2006 (UTC)
Hey there GreenReaper, not sure where I can post or ask this, wondering if you can review my own wiki at Cesarin, since I'm from Mexico and I'm still not 100% sure about some grammar values & writting rules. so I ask for your help to see if you can review and fix my errors :>
- I actually seem to have missed this note the first time around, but it looks like I dropped by the page anyway. Sorry for not responding earlier! :-) --GreenReaper(talk) 05:04, 6 April 2006 (UTC)
Furnation Worlds vandalism
Ahoy there, just wanted to let you know that FurNation Worlds was vandalized a few minutes ago by an IP-only troll. I reverted the page to an earlier edit, I just wanted you to know so you'll hopefully ban that IP from editing. Thanks. Kitsune Sniper 22:29, 27 February 2006 (UTC)
- Thanks for taking the time to spot and revert it! :-) --GreenReaper(talk) 23:09, 27 February 2006 (UTC)
Hi there, Aaaamory, and welcome to WikiFur! Thanks for your contribution to the article about your comic. Let me know if you need any help not already provided. :-) --GreenReaper(talk) 07:03, 3 March 2006 (UTC)
- Hi GreenReaper. Thanks for the welcome. I'm still new. Whee this is fun! Aaaamory 22:16, 3 March 2006 (UTC)
I can inform you with 100% confidence that there is no such thing as a BritFur convention. The site was set up by a Tippus Tailus with the thought that if he announces when and where before even booking or consulting anyone, it'd happen. As such, it is not happening and the site itself is quite simply full of lies.
Therefore, I reccomend the "BritFur" link be removed from upcoming events as it is most certainly not happening!
- Thanks for the info - I've removed it from the events calendar. I joined NorthernFurs today so I'll have a look this evening and see if I can find some references on it. --GreenReaper(talk) 20:06, 7 March 2006 (UTC)
- If you're on about joining IRC channels, I hang out in #UK on Furnet --SlyCat 20:54, 7 March 2006 (UTC)
- Interestingly, since he is mentioned on their web pages, I asked Kage what he had heard about Britfur. He said that he was contacted by one of the organizers offering to have him as a Guest of Honor about two years ago, then received a phone call a few weeks later stating that they wished to reconsider the offer due to the expense. That was the last he had heard from them. --Duncan da Husky 15:40, 13 March 2006 (UTC)
all good, and thank you^^
this is the first time iv used a wiki for other then looking up stuff. i hope to add more stuff on whatever i see intrest in
awsome things these wikis are^^ a bit confussing for a noob, but ill get the hang of it alls --FishyBoner
Thanks for the msg ^_^ --HelenBaby
Thanks for the advice, I'll re-upload some of those illos tomarow (it's late)
- This was in regard to some JPG files that would have been better as PNGs. --GreenReaper(talk) 05:04, 6 April 2006 (UTC)
Hi, Laurence -- I just wanted to follow up on our conversation on Muppet Wiki. I think you were left with the wrong impression about us, and I wouldn't want you to pass your misapprehension on to other people at Wikicities.
On my talk page, you said:
- That is also the root with my disagreement with your blocking policy - I think that it turns a certain proportion of people away unnecessarily and makes the place less successful than it could otherwise be. I may be wrong, but I look at the other wikis that succeed while allowing people to continue editing anonymously and I find it hard to believe.
You seem to think that Muppet Wiki isn't as successful as other wikis here, and actually it's the other way around. We're currently the #2 most successful Wikicity, with Star Wars at #1. After four months, Muppet Wiki has over 7600 articles, with 50 active contributors and over 500 edits a day.
By way of comparison, Creatures Wiki has 2400 pages, and gets about 30 edits a day. WikiFur has 3200 pages, and about 150 edits a day. Doctor Who has five active users, Mac has two, Doom has about ten, and Genealogy doesn't seem to have any. The current Featured Wiki, Radio Control, was abandoned, and now has one active user.
It looks like there's Star Wars as the most active Wikicity, and then there's Muppet Wiki, and then nobody else really comes close.
I would suggest that the people at Wikicities look at the way we run things at Muppet Wiki with an open mind. Our approach seems to be working better than almost anything else here. It's possible that the principles that you've inherited from Wikipedia don't apply to small niche wikis.
I think it would be fun to have a meeting on the IRC, with the Wikicities staff and our four admins, to talk about how Muppet Wiki could be used as a model for how to run a successful wiki. If you think that's a good idea, please let me know! -- Danny Toughpigs 17:14, 23 March 2006 (UTC)
- I feel compelled to mention the major effect on wiki's level of use is bound to be from their topics. For the record, I was one of the anonymous ones drawn to Muppet Wiki by the topic, but I made a handful of edits and the tone of the "Hi, how about getting a user name" message drove me away. -- Sine 22:11, 23 March 2006 (UTC)
- Hi Danny! Firstly, I was actually aware that Muppet was one of the most successful Wikicities - indeed, as I mentioned, that was why I was trying to improve the front page in the first place! Referring specifically to the front page edits, I was thinking more of it improving the site for casual visitors than editors - people make a first impression of a website at the second they arrive, and I didn't want to risk them thinking that it wasn't worth their time looking around. :-)
- As Sine says, the topic of the wiki is a major factor in its success. I would tend to say that growth to the capacity of the associated community and its culture base is inevitable once given a good start. The Creatures community had many thousands in its day, but that was six years ago and it is strictly limited in size now - therefore, there are limits to the size and popularity of its associated wiki. However, that is clearly not the only factor. More important is what you put on the pages.
- Fan encyclopedias are essentially about culture. The Creatures Wiki it is only as big as it is due to the large number of breeds, addons (COBs) and websites that have articles about them. Of course, there is not a lot to be said for some of them, and so the mean page size is smaller. Muppet's are even smaller (or were in January - it may have changed since then, but the mean doesn't tend to change by much), most likely due to the large number of episodes, characters, stories and the like that have articles. This is one reason to be wary of article count as a measure of success - one month ago Muppet Wiki was 2.6Mb in size, while WikiFur was 3.5Mb. Conversely, Star Wars was 21Mb. Even if Muppet Wiki has doubled in size over the past month (which is possible, and cool if true), it is a bit of a stretch to put it in a class of its own.
- Wikis are always very busy when they first start out, but they tend to get slower as convenient sources of information are "used up". I have a feeling that a large part of the Muppet Wiki's overnight success in terms of size is the great number of sources that are already available in a database-like format. You do have quite a few people, but it seems like the majority of the edits are coming from several high-volume editors. I know from my work on the Creatures Wiki that it is a lot easier to write about something if you already have a large set of facts about it available. The Things you can do page is a good example of leveraging existing resources to create content. We don't have that luxury - there is a published Encyclopedia Fragglia, and other published sources of information collected over the course of the 50 years that the Muppets have been around, but there's no such Encyclopedia Furry yet - we like to think we're writing it!
- Sine here is a good example of why I feel that the policy of blocking contributors who have little interest in participating socially is an incorrect one. Sine made over 200 edits before creating an account, many of them entirely new articles. This sort of situation does not occur all that much, but it does happen, enough that 18% of our edits come from anonymous users. Conversely, we've found that many of those who make accounts only post for a short amount of time (often once about themselves) and then disappear. I agree that a level of community is helpful and probably even necessary for a successful wiki project. However, I don't think that you need to exclude those that don't want to be a part of that community unless they are actively harming it.
- You're welcome to join us in #wikicities - I'm surprised that there are not more people from Muppet in there given its popularity. If you want to talk to the Wikia staff then it would probably be the best place. I'm sure they'd be interested in discussing things with you, though I don't know that there's really a time when everyone's guaranteed to be around - I know Angela and Tim are in Australia, which can make coordination a bit tricky. Also, have you considered presenting your theories of wiki management at WikiMania? Community wikis are something that I think would be an interesting topic to discuss there. --GreenReaper(talk) 03:09, 24 March 2006 (UTC):::
- Hi! Andrew from Muppet Wiki here, weighing in. To quote you, Laurence: Sine here is a good example of why I feel that the policy of blocking contributors who have little interest in participating socially is an incorrect one. That's a bit of a misunderstanding, which I think your comment about real names on Muppet Wiki also shows. Registering and participating socially aren't the same thing. While we like to know people's real names (I know it makes it easier to treat users as people and not floating entities, and I feel I've made friends with folks like Danny and Scott and Brad and other Muppet Wiki regulars, which might have happened anyway but it's easier than if I knew them only as "FlyingSaucerhead666777LOL" or what have you. The real name is not a policy, just a strong suggestion, and it lets us put them on a community portal. Several new users have registered but not responded to messages. However, they're making clearly useful edits, and the username allows them and us to see what a help they've been. If they want to talk with us, that would be nice, but there's no penalty against it. Also, Sine, when did you visit us? The username thing has only been around for a month, and is still being tested. I apologize if it seemed too harsh to you, but I'm hoping you're beginning to see that there's method to our madness. There's four admins, all of whom have fulltime jobs or school outside of the Wiki, and the policy was developed after a rash of anonymous, truculent users and spammers were basically wasting all of our time, and I know I myself have been extremely stressed out about it. Is letting every anonymous user basically screw about and trying to revert them, sometimes five times in a row (for things which are akin to vandalism, but not outright spamming, i.e. inserting one opinionated sentence over and over), important enough to sacrifice our own mental health and energy? Softening the text has been suggested before, and I'm certainly willing to listen. --Andrew, Aleal 03:31, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Here’s a few facts about our “exclusion.” (Warning, this is lengthy, but useufl I think) Of approximately 68 blocked Ips to date (generally spammers and trolls posting obscenities about Elmo, Kofi Annan, or Elton John), only 25 have been blocked with the User Name policy states as a reason. Of those, three were the same person, who kept making odd edits about Cookie Monster being an obscene reference. Two were the same IP for a person who kept posting odd messages which could be summarized as “Its stupid for Pigs in Space to have Swedish Chef as an alien and I’ll keep adding my opinion until I die”. Two IPS were a chap who apparently had a grudge against an obscure character.
- One contributed demonstrably false information repeatedly,
- One was the same as a previously registered user who had been blocked for amongst other things sending a barage of near-harassment e-mails to an admin
- One kept switching questionable dates and refused to respond to our queries to him,
- One basically acted like a jerk on pages (basically saying info was wrong and insisting he was right, but as he “wasn’t a joiner,” he refused to give any indication of what his source was except a general “trust me”),
- One was actually a vandal (changing descriptions of Caroll Spinney to “the bird man”) but we gave him a username message anyway with its accompanying e-mail address if he wanted to play nice,
one did post some useful stuff but with a lot of NPOV (and again, refused to answer queries or suggestions about editing etiquette),
- One made really strange comparisons which all had to be reverted
- One created a page full of speculation and false info about a not yet released DVD (and when it was removed to a talk page, kept changing the same info on the talk page),
- One kept editing a page to state how annoying another minor character was, another posted some useful info but also an obsessively long and irrelevant history of “Wheel of Fortune”,
- One was yet another random unexplained date changer.
- I think I'm missing a couple more same IP situations, but basically, that accounts for 16 out of 25. Of the remainder, one was an accidental block which was reverted. So that leaves 8 people who were excluded (mostly folks just adding a period). It is kind of a shame, yes, but they can e-mail to get back in, and like I said, this is all an experiment (and a few of those basically linked to pages that didn't exist and in general didn't understand how a Wiki worked and showed no interest in learning). Though the policy claimes there's a five anonymous edit trial period, in many cases we've let them slide for up to ten or more, depending on the kind of edits they make. If other Wikicities folks are put off by the policy and don't join, that's also a shame but really, there's no point in worrying about people who choose not to participate for one reason or another, on the off chance that one is a long lost Muppet genius or truly brilliant writer who also likes Muppets. For the record, we've also unblocked two more users fairly recently, after questions were raised, to see if they come back and give them more time, as their edits were either useful or questionable (random name reordering) but not outright falsifying or vandalism,
- Finally, one more note on the policy. Yes, we have a community, and we invite others to participate in it. But there's a difference between "forcing socialization" and expecting basic etiquette, respect, and really just simple communication. There's one anonymous editor who has posted to talk pages, giving a name but not choosing to register, and really doing some useful work, though he only pops in twice a month or so. We haven't blocked him, though we've encouraged him to register, and I doubt we will. Why? Because he's read the FAQ, reads talk pages, in general is aware of what we're trying to accomplish with certain larger projects rather than just blanking or changing things to fit his own view and ignoring what all other editors do, causing edit wars. Apart from the "trust me" guy, not one of the blocked users I've listed ever responded to any direct friendly greetings, questions, or warnings. --Andrew, Aleal 04:02, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Hi there Andrew - thanks for chiming in with your reasoning, and the more detailed analysis of who and what has been affected. I think the idea of a lone muppet genius is suitable for a special muppet in and of itself. I can just imagine them with lots of scraggly thread-hair and a nervous tic. :-)
- I guess the nickname issue is just a difference of opinion and usage - one which I've noticed before in one other community. I've never had a problem making friends with people using only nicknames. Indeed, I know most of my friends by them, and I'd find it less convenient otherwise due to lack of distinctiveness (I'm pretty sure I know at least three Andrews online, for example, not counting yourself). Certainly in the furry fandom there are few people who do not have and use nicknames, both online and - in many cases - in real life.
- I appreciate that you need methods of keeping counterproductive behaviour under control. I just don't see how the chosen solution solves your problem without causing needless tension. We ban bad editors as well, for various reasons, but quite a few of our most troublesome edits have come from people who have taken the time to register. The bad people are still likely to make edits, and the clever bad ones will realise that they can do so more easily with a username. Worse, it's quite possible to make multiple accounts on one IP and thus make it less clear who is agreeing or disagreeing with who.
- As for the user who keeps inserting the same sentance over and over again, or the date-switchers - no, if it's a problem then you should deal with it, as with the other cases you describe. But I don't see why you can't do so under policies that make it clear that you will ban them for that, not for being unregistered users. You seem to be attacking the symptom, and not the cause. If the flood of edits is too much for four people to deal with (and I can understand how that would be, particularly after Something Awful paid us a visit last August), I would suggest you need to find more people from within your own ranks who you can trust with admin powers. We have more - not all of them are around all the time, but enough to make me worry less about working late and not being able to look in once in a while. :-)
- Oh, and MediaWiki also has a feature for "monitoring" edits and flagging unmonitored ones in Recent changes. You might want to ask the Wikia team about the possibility of turning that back on for Muppet Wiki, so that you only need one admin checking each edit. --GreenReaper(talk) 04:42, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Laurence, I'm a little surprised by the way you're interpreting the facts. You said that our wiki was "less successful" because of our policies, but I'm finding it hard to pin down what your measure for success is. I'm pointing out that our article count, number of active contributors, number of edits and database size is larger than any other Wikicity except for one. In response, you suggest that the defining factor is our mean page size. I would say that's a little unfair, and I think at this point you're deliberately trying to find fault with Muppet Wiki because you don't agree with our community rules.
- The question, really, is whether the Wikipedia-received philosophy that you're working with is open to evidence or not. I think that the Wikipedia rules work very well for Wikipedia, which has thousands of users, but they don't work for smaller niche wikis. I can back that up with the clear evidence of our success. I would hope that you and the other Wikicities admins are at least open to considering that evidence, and thinking about whether the structure that you're promoting is really working or not.
- In your response, you were looking at some outdated stats, so here's a link to Muppet Wiki's current stats.
- Here's what you said about database size: "This is one reason to be wary of article count as a measure of success - one month ago Muppet Wiki was 2.6Mb in size, while WikiFur was 3.5Mb. Conversely, Star Wars was 21Mb. Even if Muppet Wiki has doubled in size over the past month (which is possible, and cool if true), it is a bit of a stretch to put it in a class of its own."
- In fact, if you look at the current stats, Muppet Wiki's database is 6.1Mb. It's more than doubled in size in the past month. In fact, at this rate, it'll be more than twice as big as WikiFur within a few weeks.
- It's also interesting to compare the number of contributors. You said that Muppet Wiki has "several high-volume editors" -- in fact, according to the latest stats, we have 11 contributors who have made over 1000 edits. WikiFur only has four contributors who have made that many edits -- and according to your post, many of your contributors sign on, create a page about themselves, and leave. Apparently, Muppet Wiki isn't just better at attracting contributors; we're better at keeping them, too.
- It's easy to come up with explanations for why Muppet Wiki is an "overnight success" -- we have a great topic, we tapped into an existing fan community, we're working from existing databases. But really, those are just excuses. I think it's obvious that we're an overnight success because we know how to grow and manage a small, active wiki. I think you ought to consider that maybe somebody else has a really good idea that you could learn something from.
- Now, we're not coming here to have a pissing contest with you about whose wiki is bigger, or better. The point is that I care a lot about Wikicities, and I think that the administrators here are making some mistakes in the way that you deal with the people on the wikis. I think that the evidence is right there for you to see. The vast majority of wikis on this site are limping along at best. And, unfortunately, now that you have a new successful wiki here, the only thing you can do is come up with reasons to criticize us.
- Here's my final point, and I think it's very revealing about the way that Wikicities administrators are running things. Muppet Wiki has been in operation for close to four months, and in that time, we've become the second most popular wiki here. Let's do the numbers.
- Number of Wikicities admins who have come by to complain about our policies, and tell us that we don't know how to run a successful wiki: Three.
- Number of Wikicities admins who have come by to say, wow, you guys are really active and successful, it looks like you're doing a nice job: Zero.
- You guys talk a lot about supporting healthy, active communities, but nobody from Wikicities has ever said a single nice word about our wiki, in all the time that we've been here. In fact, on this very page, all you can do is come up with reasons to tear us down and make us feel bad. You keep saying that we're excluding people, and not being friendly. Would it kill you to say something nice once in a while? Any of you? -- Danny Toughpigs 05:02, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Andrew: Thinking about it, the problem is not just the people you block; it's the people that you leave messages for who decide never to come back. I noticed in particular the text "it'll help you (and everyone) keep track of your contributions" on the first line. That's your reason for wanting it, and its tone puts me off the idea of registering. Perhaps you need more carrots? There are many good reasons for registering that are totally unconnected with everyone knowing who is doing what. You could make a page like this one explaining in more detail why they should register, and emphasising its speed and nonintrusivity. As I touched on above, an awful lot of things are not written down in the furry fandom, and I wouldn't want to lose the only people who know about them just because they felt pressured to join up or leave. --GreenReaper(talk) 08:41, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Thanks for pointing out those updated stats for me. If I had been aware of them, I would probably not have made some of the assertions I made above, as they do paint a clearer picture of your current status. I will have to ask JasonR/Tim how they're doing about getting that integrated with the main system, because I know we all want them. I would note that Google Analytics is also worth installing if you wish to know more about where your visitors are coming from and where they are going.
- I do still believe the "excuses" I made for Muppet Wiki's growth are good excuses - or rather, I honestly think that they are major reasons for its growth. The fact that Muppet Wiki has gotten to the point where these factors start to matter and drive the continued growth is the one that I consider to be attributable to Muppet's core leadership. Let me be clear on one thing, if nothing else - I think that it is great that we have another successful wikicity, and without you and your friends it would never have happened. I hope you manage to find the time to enjoy it as well as to run it! Perhaps when the target is reached . . .
- If you think that Wikia (who I do not represent) is doing a bad job in terms of community outreach - well, maybe you're right. Ultimately, though, their first job is to make sure that things run smoothly, which is hard enough when you have one wiki to deal with, let alone a thousand. It's all to easy to focus on the problems rather than the good things that are happening. If you want to improve that, then why not hang around in IRC and drop a few links to some of your neater articles as they come up? Maybe we would have a greater appreciation of the highlights of Muppet Wiki if we knew about them.
- I checked out the IRC log for last month. We all said the same things I've said recently - that we thought it would discourage casual contributors, and probably wouldn't solve your problem. Was it that surprising that the same people who'd talked about it were concerned to hear that you'd implemented it anyway? Remember, their job is to solve problems, and trust me, it sure sounds like a problem if people are getting banned from a wiki just for not logging in. While the problem you have needs a solution - large numbers of troublesome IP edits that your admin team don't have time to handle - I still think that adding admins is a far better route than to try to eliminate the IPs with a "join up or don't contribute" policy. If you are spending all your time fighting fires then there will be less time to drive other projects, and if you all burn out then there will be nobody to take over.
- With all that said - I did start editing at Muppet Wiki a fortnight ago with the specific goal of making the most improvement in the shortest amount of time - about two hours, initially. Ultimately, I did the same thing as the Wikia members of staff - I saw what I considered to be a problem, and I tried to fix it. I made the mistake of not leaving fast enough after that, instead realising that I disagreed with several more things and trying to fix them as well. That was arrogant of me, no doubt, and I apologise for it. I would probably be tempted to do it again, though, so forgive me for not coming over to congratulate you on the new layout! I've already spent over a day more than I intended dealing with this, and my manager is probably wondering what that strange eye logo on my web browser is. :-)
- I now think I understand why Wikicities has failed to be the all-embracing happy family of co-contributing wikis that was originally envisioned. For a wiki to succeed, it must have a strong leadership team with a clear vision that can build a community. It is hard enough to find that, but it is even harder to get such teams to work together (because they all have to believe they have good ideas, and want to implement them, otherwise they wouldn't have gone to the considerable trouble of properly founding a wiki). Even when they do join forces, they don't have the time to give the group project their full attention due to prior commitments to their own projects.
- As for contributing to each other's wikis . . . well, in at least one case that hasn't worked out quite as intended, has it? :-) I suspect that if the person concerned is that interested enough to take time off from other projects to gain contributor status and join another wiki's culture, then they'd probably already have founded it. We have many separate wikicities now, but "separate" is the key word. There are fifty internal links to every one interwiki link . . . and almost all of them are between the four different languages of Memory Alpha.
- I think the concept of wikicitizens who travel freely between wikis is inherently flawed - no-one can truly be a member of every wikicity, just as nobody can have citizenship in more than a few countries. It is a shame, but I don't really see a way around it. At least the GFDL is in place, so the best wiki syntax ideas can be copied from one wiki to another, but it's harder to copy culture piecemeal. I don't really want to have to wait until I decide to move on and start again to try things, though, so I'll have a look at what you've done (particularly in the area of making talk pages more discoverable, which would probably help here) and maybe try implementing similar things here and see how they go. Fair deal? --GreenReaper(talk) 08:41, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- I'm afraid you've lost me completely. People we leave messages for who decide never to come back? I have no idea what Sine's situation was, but in keeping track of patterns in both editing and our responses to them, I've yet to see an occasion where we post a welcome and then that person leaves. Whether to make useful edits or to post nonsense, they stick around. A registration page might not hurt, but I also don't see what's wrong about suggesting users might find the watchlist useful, and that if other editors can see what they're doing, they can assist, congratulate, and generally pitch in. As I've said several times before, I understand the concern about our policies but only if you think they'll set a nasty precedent. Like I keep saying, it's an experiment born from necessity. And it *has* cut down on fires. The biggest fires stressing me out right now are these sort of discussions, which keep pulling me and the others away from fun projects (such as seeing how many American states we can create pages for with in terms of their Muppet context, from filming locations and references to birth places) has me incredibly stressed. We greet people and try to be as friendly as possible. I make a point of putting a specific compliment or suggestion to almost every anonymous user I can. You mentioned our way of banning those who repeatedly add nonsense sentences, not saying we shouldn't ban them, but that we shouldn't bring up the username policy? When that happens, as opposed to outright vandals, we *always* include an e-mail address where they can explain what they were trying to do if they're genuinely clueless or good natured but a bit confused. Basically, we're giving those people a greater benefit of the doubt. Anyway, I'm tired of this whole thing which started when you redesigned our page without even so much as "Hi!" and then complained about how we were voting about it. I respect your position as admin, but please, respect ours and what we're trying to do, which you admit you have no real interest in and have generally given an impression of not really having looked at the Wiki outside of the design page and the discussions related to it.
- I would like to reiterate that a) we're not forcing people to socialize, b) we don't block people just for not registering, we block them for not communicating in anyway; they can be unsigned in but communicate, or they can register and be silent, but those who do both have by editing patterns proven to be counterproductive, as we just have to keep reverting them 5 or 10 times in a row; c) the real name thing is *not* a policy, and we have at least four or five active contributors I can think of right now, plus some new ones, who register but don't want their real name on the Wiki and we respect that (and it should be noted that just today, Sesame Street writer/composer Christopher Cerf, who was part of the show from the beginning through the 90s, registered under his real name, edited and *explained* each edit, and generally has been friendly and correcting far more misinformation and adding more good stuff in just three posts than this mythical anonymous user who won't even say hi or register or anything but knows more than anyone else about Muppets).
- This has been an experiment, and in fact we've had to date at least 8 to ten users, whether they stick around for long or not, who registered as a direct response to the Username policy, having had enough time to play around and see what we're doing. If we can see that it's not working, we'll try something else. Anyway, all the best to you. It's not worth my losing any more sleep over this matter. How about we agree to disagree and stay in our own spheres, until/unless anyone within Muppet Wiki, anonymous or registered, complains about how we run things, or how we choose to design our main page? :) --Andrew, Aleal 11:08, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Laurence, I'm glad to hear that you'll take another look at Muppet Wiki. That's really all that I'd ask, for people to just look around and see how it's going. When you do that, if you have any thoughts or questions about anything, feel free to post on my page and ask me about it.
- I absolutely understand that people don't have time to be a real contributing part of the other wikis -- everybody's busy working on their own, or at least we should be! I just have one suggestion, which I'll offer to you and all of the Wikicities admins.
- I think it would be a good idea if some of the Wikicities admins made it a practice to visit other wikis once in a while, and say something encouraging. If you only come in to "fix a problem", then you're going to get a bad response, especially if the community doesn't perceive it to be a problem. On the other hand, everybody appreciates a compliment. It's one of the basic principles of how to give feedback -- you say something nice first, before you say something critical. Giving encouragement helps people to trust you, and like you, and then you earn the right to criticize.
- So this is my proposal for any Wikicities admin who feels like doing it: Every once in a while -- maybe once a week -- pick a wiki to visit. It could be an active one, or a struggling one. Look at the recent changes list, and click on a couple of articles that look interesting. Try to get a sense of what the community is working on at the moment.
- Then just post something nice. It could be on the talk page of a well-written article, or the user page for the person who wrote it, or an admin's user page. Just say, "Hey, that's a neat article. I didn't know that (pick an interesting fact). Looks like you guys are doing a good job on this wiki. If there's anything I can help you with, let me know."
- That whole thing could take about half an hour. I think if you guys are spending time chatting on the IRC, then you probably have half an hour once a week to go pick a wiki and poke around on it. It would probably even energize you and keep you focused on why Wikicities is a good place -- you'll get to visit a bunch of other "countries", and maybe learn something that you didn't know before. Now that I think about it, it sounds like fun to me too, so maybe I'll start doing it myself.
- Anyway, the point is that it would create a nice feeling of community among all the disparate wikis here. We don't have to be contributors on each other's wikis, but it would be nice if we were friendly colleagues. It would also build trust between a wiki's leadership team and the Wikicities admins -- so when an actual problem comes up, they'll appreciate your help.
- So I hope that's helpful. As heated as this conversation has gotten in places, I'm glad that we've had the chance to talk about this stuff. -- Danny Toughpigs 14:47, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Andrew: Seems fine with me. I'm sure that if changes in your policies or guidelines appear to be necessary, your own users will suggest them in time. I shouldn't have tried to speed up the process by (e.g.) importing voting process ideas from Wikipedia, since as you say, it's a different place, and I was personally involved with the outcome of the vote.
- Danny: That's a good idea, and what you say makes sense. I will suggest it to the Wikia admins and the other Wikicities founders that I'm friends with. I know they've been watching; I directed them here when it became clear that it was an issue with wider relevance.
- The more I think about it, the more the "Wikicountries" idea seems more relevant. Countries often have heated disagreements about how other countries do things, often rooted in a lack of understanding about why things are that way due to inexperience with foreign culture or situations. Some sort of "cultural exchange" program like you suggest does seem appropriate. I think the Featured Wikicity program was partly an attempt at that, but it's not specifically targeted for that problem, and it relies on people from the wiki concerned coming out and explaining what's cool rather than others going in and understanding it for themselves (enough to write about it, say). We need both.
- I think another possible metaphor is federalism, which is the way things work in the US. There's an overarching "national" structure (Wikicities), and then each wiki is a state, or a (wiki)city.
- There's some "national" laws that apply to all the wikis -- we don't harass or insult people, we assume good faith, we don't violate copyright. If we want to be accepted as part of this country, then we need to abide by the federal laws.
- And then within that national structure, there's room for a state to make its own laws, based on things that only affect that state. In the US, states can make their own laws about school funding, or abortion, or the death penalty. The federal government only gets involved if you cross state lines, or if a case gets appealed up to federal court.
- So for us here on Wikicities, individual wikis get to set their own policies, and run things the way that they want to. Some wikis are run well, and they prosper. Others are run badly, and they stagnate. You might like the way they run things on a particular wiki, or not, but that's federalism for you. Ultimately, a wiki can be judged on its own terms -- by how well it's performing, and how happy the people are.
- So you don't have to worry about a "war", there's no chance of that. It would be like Massachusetts declaring war on Connecticut. You might think, man, the people in Montana just don't have a clue, but that's a problem for the citizens of Montana to figure out.
- The wikis don't have to compete with each other. We're all part of the same project, and in the big picture, we're all working together to make the United States of Wikicities stronger and better. -- Danny Toughpigs 16:21, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
- Hmm. States going to war over ideological issues - you mean like this? :-) But yes, I get your point. I think that the only real "wars" that have or will occur are between wikicities and other web communities that hold an opposing point of view. Most wiki editors understand the relative ease of defending the home turf from having done so before, so they're unlikely to bother going on the offensive even if they're firmly opposed to another wiki (e.g. NRA Forever vs Gun Control Wiki), but we've had a few experiences with forums and LiveJournal communities that were less than pleasant.
- Hi there, Ransom, and welcome to WikiFur! Thanks for your contributions so far - let me know if you need any help not already provided. :-) --GreenReaper(talk) 16:17, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
Thanks for the warm welcome. I spend most of my time just drawing, so it's been a while since I put my writing skills to any use, but I'm looking to polish the rust off. WikiFur is a really interesting concept. Someone's already written a little blurb about me, which is pretty slick, and I intend to write more about others I know.
Thanks again, and take it easy.
Wow... I had not realized that wiki's could be this...complicated. :D
Thanks for the message, hopefully I won't do anything too complicated to need help with. I'll let ya know if something comes up.
I don't know if it is good or bad that the High Tail Hall page is one of the more popular ones. All I know is that I have information on it, from a forum, and that I will take it upon myself to translate it here. If people ask you about it, I guess you could always send 'em my way. Maybe I should make an account, eh?
EDIT: Made an account, I'm under the name Axel now.
I'm new here, just wanted to say hi. I was going to make an article about the Vinci & Arty comics because I talk with the creators regularly. However, the main site of wikipedia claimed it a non notable comic. :( I've decided to come to you guys to see if I can fix up your own page on it. Vidyaranya 06:34, 5 April 2006 (UTC)
- Hi there, Vidyarana, and welcome to WikiFur! I'm sorry that you're having trouble on Wikipedia - it is true that they have fairly strict notability guidelines that many comics will not pass. For what it's worth, WikiFur's article was also deleted once - only after we had a few thousand pages and a significant presence did the article stick. You are certainly welcome to improve the Vinci & Arty article that we have, perhaps including some of the material you used in the Wikipedia article. Maybe at a later date they will be more receptive to having an article on the comic, especially one that has been fully developed here first. --GreenReaper(talk) 06:57, 5 April 2006 (UTC)
- Don't feel too bad - it was necessary to explain to them just who Fred Patten was when his page first went up. Nobody, even the WikiEditors is necessary aware of everything of significance. --Yealurowluro 18:02, 5 April 2006 (PDT)