[Home]EdPoor

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Ed Poor is a Mediator at WikiPedia, and the Tech Support Guru at the UnificationEncyclopediaProject.

I'm interested in community, consensus and how to treat controversial issues. I'm getting tired of WikiPedia - it just doesn't seem to have the collective will to get the job done. Or maybe I should campaign for arbcom and start kicking some serious butt?

I was approached on Monday, March 14th, 2005 about creating a fork to Wikipedia - for the purposes of publishing a print edition of it by 2008.

May we know the intention behind the idea of publishing a print version? -- HansWobbe

Welcome to meatball. Beware: the NeutralPointOfView is frighteningly absent over here. Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! (anon)

Indeed, we take everything personally. ;) -- AlexSchroeder

Sure, you'd say that, you jerk. *sniff* -- SunirShah

LOL - Clearly, there's a much more highly developed sense of humor here. ^_^ -Ed

Humor? Please define unknown jargon words. -- HelmutLeitner

Hi Ed! Welcome to MeatballWiki and the small knot of Wikipedians who hang out here. Have you seen SoftSecurity and the connected pages yet? -- StephenGilbert


One similarity I've already noticed between WikiPedia and MeatballWiki is instant collegiality (or is that conviviality?) -- you know, welcoming the newcomer. It was the same on WardsWiki for me.

What I came here for is to make sense of various community problems facing Wikipedia:

Plus my personal favorite:

Have you looked at NonviolentCommunication? It can be used as a conflict resolution technique, among other things. I've been studying it for a while now and applying it and it works well for me. --JasonFelice

Wikipedia has a lot of problems that relate to the fact that not many participants there look beyond their borders. Compare this with Americans. ;) Consequently, they repeat a lot of discussions that we have already had five years ago, internalized, and then moved on to better answers. Compare medicare. However, many problems can be expensive to fix if they continue down their garden path. For instance, evaporation of trust after Wiki:UnethicalEditing will be difficult to overcome. Also, annoying away strong long time contributors is very expensive. Consider MetaWikiPedia:inclusionism which is a problem we are also discussing here this month on MeatballWiki on RadicalInclusiveness. I already know the result of deletionism, eventualism, and inclusionism, and that is WikiWiki, because I was central to those flame wars in April 2000. In fact, they inspired me to leave to start MeatballWiki.

At some point perhaps my experience will wiki growth will break down as I stopped paying attention to WikiWiki a couple years ago. Then again, I also hope that we've learnt enough to help wikis avoid those kinds of situations entirely, so then we'll be breaking new ground. -- SunirShah

I just read your several dozen meatball articles, plus your auto-bio and I'm intrigued with the similarities between your life of computer usage and mine. Both of us seem to have evolved from childhood in a close relationsihp to (a) the machine and (b) the intriguing possibilities of on-line community machine make possible.

I think that WikiPedia needs a stronger sense of community to thrive, and I want to master the techniques that DO HELP it thrive. I'm getting the sense that "tough guy" techniques that might work in a nursery school classroom won't scale to multi-hundred or multi-thousand-person online communities. But I'm also impatient: is there nothing better than SlowAndSteadyWinsTheRace?? --EdPoor

I don't know. There is no silver bullet, no recipe to just follow for certain success. There are always - at least - two sides of the coin and you can only bet on one in each single situation. But going through hundreds and thousands of communications - if you always try your best for the community and to understand your partners - it will become more fun and you'll get a higher success rate all the time. Patience surely pays. If there is a personal recipe I'd like to give away, then it is: never, never, never, Never use strong words. -- HelmutLeitner

Indeed, I agree. Never use strong words because other users are likely to take offense. Strong words can touch off a FlameWar. Be smooth and soothing instead. Make sense, but don't bash people over the head with it. Lead them to drink -- don't splash water up their noses. --EdPoor

"Never" is a pretty strong word, don't you think, Ed? -- LionKimbro

Hi Ed! My answer to How can people who disagree on facts and values COMBINE to write a stable article on a controversial subject? would be to leave the facts and values to a few external authorities, and seek to develop stable criticisms of the facts and values held by those authorities. It is sort of a Wiki:DivideAndConquer in idea space. --DavidForrest (touting CollaborativeCriticism)

Ce n'est pas ton usage de la langue anglaise qui m'a causé de la peine Ed, c'est ma vie et mes angoisses. Je ne connais pas l'origine du problème, mais je sais que mes hormones sont sens dessus dessous et que le moindre petit commentaire me perturbe :-(

Amitiés brother accross the sea :-)


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