Open main menu
User language
en-N This user has a native understanding of English.
fr-3 Cet utilisateur dispose de connaissances avancées en français.
es-1 Este usuario tiene un conocimiento básico del español.
it-1 Questo utente può contribuire con un livello elementare in italiano.
Wikidata mop.svgThis user is an administrator on Wikidata. (verify)
Users by language

Active on EnWikipedia and Wikidata, and somewhat on EnWikisource. Would like to be more active on Commons, EnWikivoyage, and the French-language sites.





My opinions about Wikimedia, if anyone's interested

Unlike a lot of people here, I'm generally willing to trust that the WMF is doing the right thing. I think people who complain about "Wikiafication"[1] or Foundation overreach—some of whom I greatly respect and admire as Wikimedians—fail to grasp the severity of the problems with the ways our sites operate. To build a better encyclopedia/dictionary/library/travel-guide/etc., we need a more welcoming culture and a more intuitive interface, and if that's at the expense of adding some shiny buttons and icons, so be it. I'm glad most of us can agree that VisualEditor is useful and necessary, and the optimist in me hopes that it will create a sufficient influx of useful contributors as to mitigate some of our greatest problems, such as "vested contributor"-ism, assumptions of guilt in regards to sockpuppetry, and insufficient checks and balances on admins.[2] I also can't wait for Flow or a similar initiative to finally make talk pages usable for newbies.[3]

On the other hand, I think the Foundation really needs to step up their game when it comes to supporting the "sister projects" (a phrase that itself assumes that everything revolves around Wikipedia). Wikipedia is one of the greatest success stories in the history of the Internet; I think the Foundation isn't sure what to do with the fact that a lot of its other projects aren't, and sometimes it just tries to pretend that they don't exist. We need better publicity for our less well-known projects.[4] I don't think I've ever seen a project other than Wikipedia mentioned on a TV show or in a movie. I dream of the day that that may change. Hopefully, once more projects get integrated into Wikidata, making interproject links easier, some of this may happen organically.

All that said, once the Foundation starts working more on supporting its other ventures, I totally see the case for shutting down Wikinews and Wikiquote. I wouldn't even know where to begin listing the problems with the former, and the latter simply doesn't strike me as a productive use of resources, nor do I see the logic of a community dedicated to free content running wikis consisting of copyrighted quotations.[5] (If the Foundation were to say right now, "Okay, we're gonna start focusing on our smaller wikis more, but there's too many of them, so we're gonna drop Wikinews and Wikiquote," I think that would be okay too. That's what Google's doing with some of its less-used products, and it makes sense to not spend energy trying to fix something that no one would really miss if you killed it.)

In the long term, I'd like to see Wikisource turned into one multilingual site, and, once the software allows it, Wiktionary and Wikispecies to be turned into what would amount to elaborate transclusions of Wikidata content. (Only after, of course, those wikis have had all their content migrated.) I think there's on-and-off discussion about the former idea. The latter won't be possible for years anyways.[6]

Oh, Meta also needs to be fixed sometime, but I don't think that really needs to be a priority.

  1. (An essay I hate to give even one more WhatLinksHere entry to.)
  2. As a Wikidata admin, I have complete empathy for anyone else who's been subjected to baseless accusations of admin abuse or the like. It sucks. However, there are some admins who screw up too often, and there are some who should be removed. I think all Wikimedia projects should be required to either have some form of admin review, or the ability to desysop by a simple 50% vote. That way they'll be less baseless trolling, so when I go to an admin's talk page and try to politely tell them that an action they took was outside of policy, they won't have to immediately be on the defensive. (If you think I'm talking about you, I'm probably not. This has only happened to me a couple of times.)
  3. Note, however, that I absolutely despise LiquidThreads, to the point that I voted against a Board candidate merely because he liked it. (Well also because of some other stuff, but the LQT love didn't help.)
  4. In the recent Board elections, I voted against anyone who disagreed with this point of view, and I believe the results showed that the rest of the community largely did so as well.
  5. Not to mention that the process of deciding which quotes should or shouldn't be included is... problematic. Such extensive editorial involvement would go against the spirit of essentially any other wiki.
  6. Someday, I'd like to sit down with some very smart programmers, and outline a really good, smartphone-compatible, Wikidata AI, which would both answer questions for you, à la Siri, and allow you to input suggested answers if it doesn't know. I think this could be revolutionary and could get us a lot more contributors ("Neither Wikipedia nor Wikivoyage has an article on that city; would you like to write one?"), and a $0 pricetag could ensure both WMF backing and high usership.