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Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:09 pm
by ericbarbour
Bad article for this week:

"North Africa's First Superstar" ... -superstar ... iba-msika/

Given the obsessive treatment WP insiders still give to prominent Jews, this is doubly strange. Most of the Google hits for her are in French or Arabic and only spell her name "Mssika" or "Msika". Plus, there was no AFD I could find but there was this.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Sat Apr 28, 2018 9:08 pm
by AndrewForson
The popular BBC TV comedy series Not the Nine O'Clock News was going to begin on 2 April 1979, according to Wikipedia, with "Hertz Rental (narrating general elections in Greenland)". Not surprisingly this particular comedian is otherwise completely unknown, possibly on account of not being in a state of actual existence (as a comedian, as opposed to a car hire company). This little gem was added three years ago by an IP in Santiago, Chile, presumably some sort of open proxy. It has been viewed over 200,000 times.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Mon Apr 30, 2018 12:20 am
by Abd
ericbarbour wrote:Bad article for this week:

The problem with this article is? The language in the lede is peacock, a bit, or just a clumsy translation from the French. "autochtone" means "native," "aboriginal" not being used in English to talk about "civilized" peoples like the Tunisians.

(Okay, so it needs work, but it would still be a valuable contribution. The problem is if it stays as defective for years. The real problem: no efficient process for upgrading articles, it's all ad hoc, and incredibly wasteful of editor time ... and too often, as Wikipedia stands, editors who work hard end up having wasted years of effort.)

As is common on Wikipedia, however, dig beneath the surface, it is crawling with vermin. The article was created by duckduckstop. Global contributions, 9,010, 192 deleted. Files uploaded, of which only 5 were uploaded to Commons. This user was creating many non-free files, hosted under a claim of fair use. He was blocked as a sock 5 April 2015 by Drmies. First edit was a notice of intention to attend a meet-up, as "duckduckgo," 20 April 2013, clearly a returning user. However, there was no sign of disruptive editing. The user page, as edited by Drmies, refers to the SPI casepage for Slowking4. That user had 21,049 edits to Wikipedia, from 7 January 2011 to indef block 8 May 2013. User was clearly in trouble by 17 April 2013, for "(systematic abuse of non-free content policy)"

Ah, one of my favorite stumbling blocks for users who actually want to improve the project. Wikipedia policies are supposedly designed to create a "free encyclopedia," but is, in fact, designed to allow "free re-use," including by commercial ventures, who may not be able to rely on Fair Use. Policies require a machine-readable non-free template, allowing a commercial re-user to remove non-free content, but this will create work for them, which they would need to supply. It could be costly. We ran into this at Wikiversity, where the educational purposes of the project were clearly advanced by hosting material under fair use, and it is legally safe. But there were wikignomes who came to WV to demand removal of harmless fair use images. WMF policy, you know. In fact, the WMF never complained.

Slowking4 has 272,354 total edits to WMF projects. He's still active on Commons. It appears that, creating or editing articles, he would find an image usable under fair use, in his opinion. The wikignome fanatics, instead of finding a suitable free use file (as suggested by guidelines), find it far easier to attack the file, and many would speedy-deleted, though there is clearly an editorial judgment involved. As a very, very active user, there would be, it's reasonable to expect, many examples where he came into conflict with editors, and it appears that administrators deleted at least some of these files with no notice. He objected. Perhaps he used some choice words, and people who invest enormous work into editing often do. And, of course, instead of someone intervening to mediate and calm the waters, instead he's blocked.

He uploaded 302 files to Wikipedia, mostly claiming fair use (he'd upload fully free files to Commons). Of those, about 80 have been deleted (26%). Of the most recent 50, 8 (16%) have been deleted. Given that adding a fair-use image is often controversial, it's a judgment call if it is appropriate or not, his level of deleted files is not high; the level of files remaining and presumably considered to improve articles is actually quite decent. given the strong prejudice.

Duckduckstop uploaded 631 files apparently for fair use. 51 have been deleted. That's 8%. Duckduckstop did not contest deletions. However, he did not abandon incivility. Yet I see no warnings. Some remarkable comment from an arbitrator.

There is no visible explanation of why he was blocked, except for being a sock of Slowking4. Once upon a time, in a land far away, checkusers would not look for socks unless a request showing disruption was shown. From DGG's comments, Duckduckstop was being attacked, and what attackers do is to send private information to checkusers. What did the checkuser find? Everyking4 would have been stale.

This was the report. Filing this as a SlowKing SPI case, linking to a very old edit signed (mysteriously), was outing an editor's IP, and I'm not surprised to see that from Beetstra. The original purpose of the SK block is forgotten, all that needs to be known is "was indef blocked and is therefore block evading."
From the timing, Drmies checked based on that and possibly other private evidence. (That signature would only establish that SK used that IP, which was not stable, two years earlier. The edit Beetstra blocked was a library.) SK was very visible, apparently, at meetups. This is really Star Chamber process.

Beetstra became obsessed with this editor. In a later report, he says he "nuked" the contributions of a series of alleged socks. Technically, that's allowed; however this blocked user had a long history of positive contributions. He was blocked for non-free uploads, when his track record was actually positive, and for incivility, mostly over what can easily be infuriating. Not for bad edits. Once upon a time,this edit would have been considered vandalism. With the adminstrolls, status offense takes priority over value of content (and also over privacy, by the way and common decency). The banhammer is a blunt instrument, as used. This all could have been fixed years ago, but ... there are forces at work that don't want a reliable encyclopedia. It would interfere with their agenda, or at least with their personal power. What else would they do with their time?

There was an effort to get SlowKing unblocked after a year. The questions asked were standard. His response was actually sane. He's better off blocked. The administration is some mixture of abusive and incompetent. He believed that his block was improper. But nobody did anything about it. Ah, the old Meatball:DefendEachOther. Shame on the community!

He expects that if he were unblocked, and did the work that he was good at, he'd run into the same trouble all over again. And why should he volunteer so many hours to a project that treated him so shabbily?

On the other hand, he's active on Commons, another opportunity to spend countless hours in an unreliable and sometimes quite hostile environment. (But Commons is friendlier than Wikipedia, overall. Unless you are a clueless noob and don't understand policies, and some defacto-policy makes no sense to ordinary people, it can be brutal.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Mon Apr 30, 2018 3:50 am
by ericbarbour
You did a great job of summarizing the problems with that article, Abd. I don't go into such detail simply because I don't have the time.

And here's another quickie: Robin Hanson has had an article on WP since 2004. It remains quite positive, since it is being watched over by members of Wikipedia's libertarian gang (Viriditas, RedWordSmith, Srich32977, FeralOink, Gwern Branwyn, and yes of course, that elderly Bauhaus fan David Gerard). Unquestionably because of Hanson's connections to the notorious Eliezer Yudkowsky, AI researcher and operator of the even-more-notorious group blog LessWrong--a haven for the extreme fringe of libertarianism, futurist/extropian types, and "transhumanists". Wikipedia LUVS LessWrong, and many Wikipedia insiders have accounts therein. If OCD nerdish pedantry drives you up the wall, do NOT try to read threads on LessWrong. Free advice.

Also, Hanson's article fails to mention his somewhat bizarre opinions about sexual politics, rape and "incels". ... e_taps_top ... -caca.html ... 4216662261

From the book wiki:
From a WO thread, 16 June 2014:

"And this reminds me of one of the most crank-ish transhumanists I've ever run across: Eliezer Yudkowsky"

"Yes, kids, that's right; Yudkowsky runs LessWrong, a forum where Singulatarians hang out, and rave at each other incoherently. Yes, despite knowing very little about what they're talking about, these nuts believe that someday a giant all-powerful artificial intelligence will create simulations of all of us, and torture the simulations. I defy anyone to copy one of those threads and explain it to the rest of us."

"One of LessWrong's more prominent users: David Gerard."
"Principal author of RW's LessWrong article: David Gerard."
"Principal author of RW's "Roko's Basilisk" article: David Gerard."

Gerard was also the creator of and a heavy editor of Wikipedia's LessWrong article.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Tue May 01, 2018 4:39 am
by ericbarbour
Shitty self-authored biography of the week. This one is extra stupid and extra embarrassing. Ask a Wikipedian what this turd is doing on their servers.

Scott Baker (writer) ... /Rubberbat

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Thu May 24, 2018 12:37 am
by ericbarbour
I commented on this YEARS ago. And it still hasn't been fixed: a blatant "personal essay" with no real references. What is with all the crap about octopuses? If you ever find yourself in a dispute with a Wiki-Lawyer who likes to snipe about references, bring this one up. There are plenty more on Wikipedia.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Wed May 30, 2018 10:29 pm
by ericbarbour
Lol something tells me that WP's long love affair with Apple might be showing a few cracks.
The Genius Training Student Workbook is Apple's employee training manual for Apple Store tech-support employees, called Geniuses.[8] The manual features various marketing techniques revolving around the end goal of selling merchandise. One of the basic tenets taught to the employees in training is that “Everyone in the Apple Store is in the business of selling”.[9]

The basic selling strategy is summed up with a mnemonic device: Approach, Probe, Present, Listen, End (APPLE). When customers have concerns, the prescribed response in the manual is the "Three Fs:" Feel, Felt, and Found technique.[10] Although employees who are not in the Genius role don't receive this manual or go through this training, every Genius must attend a two-week recruit training that mandates programs as diverse as “Using Diagnostic Services” and “The Power of Empathy.”[9] Geniuses also have a list of words that the manual clearly stipulates as banned; words such as "bomb", "crash" and "hang" must be substituted by "does not respond" or "unexpectedly quits".[11] The manual also teaches employees to read emotional cues such as drumming on a table or placing a palm on the back of the neck that might mean a customer is bored or frustrated, respectively.[12]

The manual was a well-kept secret, until a copy leaked in August 2012 and ended in the hands of Gizmodo's senior staff writer Sam Biddle, who commented: "It’s a penetrating look inside Apple: psychological mastery, banned words, roleplaying—you’ve never seen anything like it."[13] A Christian Science Monitor article connected the manual's contents to the idea of the "reality distortion field", a term for Apple's effectiveness at charming customers.[14]
Dropped there in 2016 by a freak who obsesses over Catholic subjects....which reminds me, have a look at VanishedUserABC sometime. 'Twas he/she who jacked up Marian apparition to its current enormous size (101k bytes and used to be longer). Do NOT look too closely at some of the weirder Catholic-related articles if you value your sanity--whether you are Catholic or not.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Thu May 31, 2018 5:12 am
by The End
List of wartime cross-dressers ... s-dressers

It's just a list and the "As a major plot device in fiction" section is definitely not needed.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:14 pm
by ericbarbour
Once again, they produce shit about the history of the electronics industry that made their "encyclothing" possible.

Not only was Brush a major manufacturer of transducers and a major pioneer of magnetic tape recording, this shitty stub does not mention Charles Francis Brush Jr, the guy who actually started the damn company. The Case Western University article used as the only source is full of errors.

In 2007 it was better. But the same nerd who put in most of the content came back in 2012 and trashed it.

Re: Crap or questionable articles

Posted: Sun Jun 24, 2018 12:45 am
by The End
Why do we need "List of celebrities who own wineries and vineyards?" ... _vineyards