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Debating "Deletionism" At Wikipedia

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the edit-this-story-one-comment-at-a-time dept.

The Media 484

Ian Lamont writes "In a strange turn of events, the Wikipedia entry for Deletionpedia — an online archive of deleted Wikipedia articles — is now being considered for deletion. The entry for Deletionpedia was created shortly after the publication of an Industry Standard article and a discussion on Slashdot this week. Almost immediately, it was nominated for deletion, which has sparked a running debate about the importance of the Wikipedia entry, Deletionpedia, and the sources that reference it. For the time being, you can read the current version of the Deletionpedia entry, while the Wikipedia editors carry on the debate."

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484 comments

I know what Tony is going to say (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25098775)

Delete. But that is because he is that way. And no other. None at all.

Hmm... (5, Funny)

freyyr890 (1019088) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098779)

So that's like... meta-deletion?

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

omeomi (675045) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098997)

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. There are too many deletion-happy admins at Wikipedia speedy deleting way too many pages that people have put a lot of effort into. And the deletion review process is a crock. The people who regularly check in on deletion review pages are the same people who delete as many pages as they can, so they will almost always vote for a page to stay deleted. Anybody else who speaks up in support of a page will get ignored because they're not one of the group, and if they're not an active Wikipedia member, they'll get labeled a sock-puppet, whether or not there's any evidence whatsoever that they are not a real person. And in my experience, the admins consider online-sources to be non-notable, and print sources to be too difficult to track down, so it's a catch-22. It makes creating pages on Wikipedia far more effort than it's worth.

Re:Hmm... (4, Insightful)

AtariKee (455870) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099111)

Wikipedia has long ceased to be an accurate source of information, and more of an elitist bureaucracy. I had to call out one particular mod on his discussion page and on the Jonathan Ive page, because he considered my changing of the iMac's introduction from 1997 to 1998 "vandalism" (a change I had to make FIVE times), and it was FINALLY changed.

After that ridiculous incident, I stopped relying on Wikipedia for anything substantive. Its accuracy can not be assured due to the bureaucratic toolboxes that moderate the site.

Re:Hmm... (3, Interesting)

hahafaha (844574) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099121)

Though I generally agree, I feel that the notability guidelines are broken for other reasons.

Consider, for instance, a Wikipedia article on basically any random public high school. As long as there is a website, you can make a reasonable (and arguably useful) article, with lots of information regarding classes offered, policies, etc. A public high school is usually going to be the only school in the town, maybe one of a few. The result of this is that the town newspaper is going to mention it. Most towns have newspapers, and as long as it's not *too* rural of a town, the newspaper will be online. That basically meets the criteria (it's mentioned in a printed source, which everyone has access to, and facts included are verifiable).

Is some random high school notable? I'd say not. Now, one can make the other argument that it doesn't matter, because the point is to be a useful source of information. I'd agree with that -- the information is of limited use, but it's going to be useful to the population of that town, which, if only numbering in the couple of thousand, is still substantial. However, it's certainly not "notable".

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099357)

Notable to you no. Notable to someone who lives in the town, yes. Wikipedia isn't to be judged by how it relates to your own small world. If it is irrelevant to you then leave well alone, rather than trying to force others to conform to your own standards.

If the size of Wikipedia reduces it usefulness to you then the problem is that the search engine you are using is broken. Don't fix a broken search engine by slashing and burning the target of the search until it fits within the engine's limitations. Fix the search algorithm instead.

Re:Hmm... (1, Flamebait)

Toll_Free (1295136) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099157)

And since when did anyone actually think that this wouldn't happen?

I mean, C'mon. At some point in time, wikipedia would become nothing more than a high school popularity contest, as EVERYTHING does, due to the human element.

Deleting ANYTHING from wikipedia is stupid. If something is PROVEN to be inaccurate, then that's another story.

Besides, I don't HONESTLY know of anywhere that I can quote wikipedia and be taken seriously. Encyclopedia Brittanica, et al, don't have that problem.

Somewhat like the entire OSS / Corporate software arguments. It's a great idea, but honestly, it will take literally YEARS of human development for it to actually take effect. Much to the detriment of people, but still...

--Toll_Free

Re:Deleting ANYTHING? Really? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099201)

If you saw some of the absolute crap that comes in as new articles on an hourly basis, you would quickly see the merit of deleting at least a few things. I've lost count of how many articles about garage bands that formed a month ago, childish "_____ is the coolest person ever!!!", vanity articles, and loony diatribes that I've marked for speedy deletion.

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

sailingmishap (1236532) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099403)

Deleting ANYTHING from wikipedia is stupid. If something is PROVEN to be inaccurate, then that's another story.

Prove it's true. Otherwise it gets deleted. That's not deletionism, that's not fanaticism, it's intellectual honesty. If it's good enough for the last two centuries of scientific and historical academia, it's good enough for me. I don't want an article on how the Flying Spaghetti Monster created the universe just because no one can prove it's not true.

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

Jane_Dozey (759010) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099521)

I've written a couple of articles about places of interest in a notable city in England. They've been deleted each time as the "moderators" don't know the city and think the places are of little note. Talk to the residents and visitors though and it's a different story. While there are submissions worthy of deletion it should *not* be up to the elite, and quite often uninformed, few to judge this.

Re:Hmm... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099169)

People here say that, and I haven't seen it that often. It may happen, but more likely the crap that gets deleted is for small websites and bands that are just using Wikipedia for promotion. Hell, I've seen a 300 member book club that went through the process without being deleted.

Re:Hmm... (3, Interesting)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099243)

I believe that there is a reason why what you say is more important than you know. Wikipedia gives a rough uniformity to the presentation of information. Using that and a few software tools, it's possible to glean more information than simply what was put into the wiki page. Deleting information too briskly will lead to a diminution of the value of both the wiki page information, reference veracity of the site, and the value of any information based on combinatorial information.

Using an example offered by someone else, if it is known that there are 123,000 high schools in the USA, and 75% of them are listed on Wikipedia. You can draw some reasonably credible information about high schools in the USA from scanning the wiki pages. Yes, Google indexes the Internet/www but the trouble is that information on the Internet is hardly presented in conformal manner. That is one of the benefits of Wikipedia, or could be.

There are lots of ideas about how to best organize the information on the Internet, but all of the require voluntary compliance by the authors of the information. That is the one very cool thing about Wikipedia. Perhaps, someone will suggest a semantic web version of how to publish pages of information on the Internet so that the combined reality of such pages IS a living encyclopedia. Using something like the single sign-on and security schemes, it is possible for vetted reviewers to rate each such site so that when you view it in your browser, those ratings are available for you to see. If the information on the site you are viewing is only rated 2 out of 10, then you know whether it is trustworthy information and whether you need to seek corroboration.

This deletion thing is sad in the respect of what it means, of what will not happen. Wikipedia is a good thing as an idea. It is even more valuable as a information repository or data warehouse. At least it could be... sigh

Re:Hmm... (0, Troll)

jg1708 (1246046) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099327)

Hey Twitter, STFU. Kidding, of course.

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

Teancum (67324) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099367)

There seems to be a group of folks who like to "purify" a community website, and to be honest I don't even know what makes these kind of folks tick.

I tend to be an inclusionist/separatist in my attitude toward wiki projects and content. By this I mean that content ought to be given time to develop, even if it seems crazy and off the wall. By being a separatist, I think the mergist viewpoint is full of logical errors and that most calls to merge two articles together are mainly a variant of deletionists who think that such petty articles about obscure topics need to go... but with the "good vibes" that somehow the topic will be covered in some huge all-encompassing article.

There are some things that do need to go on occasion, but I've also seen some of the most creative applications of Wiki technology get developed when somebody pushes the edge of a project and develops something way out of bounds. Indeed some of these extreme projects have become out right independent Wikimedia projects of their own, including things like Wikibooks, Wikinews, and even Wiktionary that all had their origins on Wikipedia until some deletionist decided to kick them off.

This phenomena unfortunately isn't even limited to Wikipedia and the WMF sister projects either, but is widespread in nearly any wiki project I've been involved with. Indeed, I've found that the relatively flat peer-editing model of Wikipedia tends to keep the worst of these issues in check as opposed to much worse sorts of community editing models like the Open Directory Project.

Funny Story... (5, Funny)

Rutefoot (1338385) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099387)

A couple years ago a wiki page was created about a friend of mine who ran a website, in addition to a wiki page about the website itself. It appeared to have been made by some fan who never made themselves known.

It wasn't long of course before these deletion-happy admins nominated it for speedy deletion. The decision was proving to be unanimous. And, I for one didn't blame them. A wiki page for an administrator of a website seemed rather silly.

My friend agreed. He didn't feel that he really should be on the site and decided to go to the deletion page and weigh in on the issue. He told the wiki admins who he was and that he wanted the page deleted thinking this would solidify the consensus that had for the most part already been reached. I think the quote was something along the lines of "I don't want to be on your gay-ass site, so I'd appreciate it if you just hurried up and deleted it before I leave you all with a fist-sized, mushroom-shaped bruise on all of your faces."

Not surprisingly, all of the admins had a change of heart and all decided they wanted to keep the page.

Oh wow, man. (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25098785)

My mind is officially blown.

I did that (3, Interesting)

Geoffrey.landis (926948) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098857)

Yeah, I did that.

I just was too amused by the idea of an article on Deletionpedia, a listing of articles deleted from Wikipedia, in the Wikipedia

Although, actually, it really is notable enough to deserve an article.

Re:Oh wow, man. (1)

rhyder128k (1051042) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099309)

I recommend that you never go to the official Usenet FAQ FAQ, the first question of which is "What is an FAQ?"

Deletionism? (5, Funny)

DirtySouthAfrican (984664) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098787)

The politically correct term is "Intelligent Unpublishing".

Re:Deletionism? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25098807)

There are many words for the mods at Wikipedia, and (NSFW) "intelligent" [encycloped...matica.com] isn't one of them.

Re:Deletionism? (2, Funny)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098983)

The politically correct term is "Intelligent Unpublishing".

I don't think the word "intelligent" means what you think it means. It is the last word that could ever be applied to the actions (or reactions, in fact) of wikipedia's admins.

Book burning by any other name.

Next up for deletion... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25098791)

The article on circular logic.

Re:Next up for deletion... (1)

Mr Z (6791) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098907)

Keep efficiency in mind. Remember, once you delete one link in the circular reference, then your reference counting garbage collector will do the rest.

(I wonder what that does to its PageRank.)

Easy. (5, Informative)

Chairboy (88841) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098795)

Is the website notable? Has the mainstream media reported on it? Does it meet the requirements listed in WP:WEB, the guideline for website notability?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Notability_(web) [wikipedia.org]

This should be all anyone needs to know to !vote on the issue. There is no 'special pass' for things that have been on Slashdot, or are about Wikipedia.

Easy...to game (5, Interesting)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098821)

So you're saying that all you have to do is pass some 'notability' threshold, or buy the necessary media coverage (don't bore me with claims of journalistic integrity), and you're done?
Great. We all know what kind of site Wikipedia has evolved into, we just haven't settled on the price.

Re:Easy...to game (3, Interesting)

Free the Cowards (1280296) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098839)

Don't even have to buy it. From doing a Google News search, it looks to me like the controversy over deleting the Deletionpedia entry is going to make it notable even if it didn't start out that way.

Nope. (5, Insightful)

ubernostrum (219442) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098927)

Wikipedia's notability guideline (note it's not actually an official policy) has all sorts of loopholes built in to it to allow a clique of editors to kill something they don't like. In this case, they would argue that Deletionpedia was not really notable in and of itself, but was only notable because of some notable incident which might be worthy of having a separate article (but that article would likely never be written, or would itself be deleted on some other grounds).

Re:Nope. (3, Funny)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099075)

The question is: can Wikipedia become a sufficiently elitist snob-club to give Brittanica a chance for a comeback?

Re:Nope. (5, Insightful)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099511)

i actually find all this scorn for Wikipedia and its mods/admins quite amusing.

there are lots of accusations of personal biases, clique-mentality, elitism, and other very human traits. but i wonder if those making these complaints ever bothered to ask themselves whether these problems are endemic to the Wikipedia community or if they're problems which are inherent with any editorial process and that it's only because of Wikipedia's community-driven nature that these problems of objectivity are actually exposed and open to public scrutiny & debate.

i guess with any kind of progressive movement there will be rearguard reactions to oppose it. however, in this case i think that the complaints being leveled are actually quite valid. it's just that Wikipedia is being unfairly singled out simply because of its open/collaborative nature.

if you only have 20-30 person conventional editorial staff these problems would be a non-issue simply because the people who disagree with the company's official editorial opinion would simply be fired or probably just would not have been hired in the first place. all of the editorial politics are handled behind closed doors and any issues would be solved by a simple executive decision from the chief editor.

but once you involve the public in the editorial process then you're opening it to infinitely many viewpoints and a greater diversity of opinions. this invites open discussion and eliminates the risk of corporate politics influencing editorial decisions. but the same virtues that make Wikipedia a great alternative to the largely consolidated mainstream media also give rise to controversy as its open nature is more likely to draw public criticism.

the more people that take part in a debate, the more disagreements will arise, and the harder it will be to satisfy everyone involved. but i don't see this as a flaw with collaborative publishing. it reveals an often missed (or concealed) dimension to print publishing, particularly that of reference works.

Re:Nope. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099291)

Actually the troubling issue is that Deletionpedia is notable in itself, but not of itself.

Deleting Deletionpedia... (4, Funny)

Geoffrey.landis (926948) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099135)

Don't even have to buy it. From doing a Google News search, it looks to me like the controversy over deleting the Deletionpedia entry is going to make it notable even if it didn't start out that way.

In fact, the fact that the controversy over deleting the deletionpedia page is itself notable makes me very tempted to write a Wikipedia article "Deletionpedia Deletion Controversy"...

On the other hand, I guess that might be pushing it a little too far, though.

Re:Easy...to game (2, Interesting)

at_slashdot (674436) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098887)

I guess if you can buy the necessary media coverage you are notable enough, seems OK to me.

Re:Easy...to game (2, Interesting)

smitty_one_each (243267) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099069)

Yep. Money is pretty much the only metric upon which most agree.
Are we allowed to chuckle at the drift away from Wikipedia's original, relatively anarchist philosophy?

speed deleting (3, Interesting)

Joe the Lesser (533425) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098959)

One problem I feel is that a page should have considerable time of protection. As you can see, the buzz of deletionpedia is still growing, so it is actively becoming notable. If articles that were correct could have 30 days to build their cases that would at least be some improvement.

Sounds like Wikipedia needs competition (4, Insightful)

NotQuiteReal (608241) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098797)

To keep it in check. Maybe two or three.

Re:Sounds like Wikipedia needs competition (4, Informative)

DanielLC (1346013) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098919)

Do you mean like forks like Wikinfo [wikinfo.org] , or unrelated, but similar, sites like Everything2 [everything2.com] , h2g2 [bbc.co.uk] and Knol [google.com] ?

Re:Sounds like Wikipedia needs competition (5, Insightful)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099049)

Wikipedia has competition. The problem is pagerank. Google calculates pagerank on the basis of the site, not individual pages. Wikipedia has a ridiculously overinflated page rank -- especially when you consider many individual entries are total crap.

In most cases there are better quality pages available, however the Wikipedia page will be in the top 10 of search results, no matter how good or bad it is.

It's Google that needs competition. That will stop monopolies in a number of areas -- not just Wikipedia.

Re:Sounds like Wikipedia needs competition (4, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099151)

What I think the poster meant was for there to be a site like Wikipedia that was A) A Wiki and B) Had information about all kinds of things, while still being C) Somewhat serious. And there really isn't any other place. Granted, there are a lot of good Wikis for various things, just about every major game has one, and I use LyricWiki (whenever it isn't down) to check for lyrics. But there isn't one good place to get all kinds of information that is freely editable except for Wikipedia. Also, compared to most other sites Wikipedia is fast to load and doesn't have all the ads.

Re:Sounds like Wikipedia needs competition (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099383)

Wikipedia has competition. The problem is pagerank. Google calculates pagerank on the basis of the site, not individual pages. Wikipedia has a ridiculously overinflated page rank -- especially when you consider many individual entries are total crap.

No. It's PAGE rank, it's based per page. It's based on the rank of the PAGE that links to it. Wikipedia is able to "farm" a lot of page rank, as it shares it up between individual pages (through cross linking) and doesn't give it out (All externel pages have rel="nofollow")

Anyway, I haven't yet seen competition half as worthy as wikipedia

They didn't save the GNAA article (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098815)

not a great loss, but I wonder if they're picking and choosing which articles to save, or if they're only doing stuff after a certain date.

Paradox! (5, Interesting)

JackassJedi (1263412) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098819)

But what if an article should ever be deleted from Deletionpedia?

I sense the LHC is becoming redundant here!

Re:Paradox! (1)

Fluffeh (1273756) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098971)

If you delete something from Deletiopedia, it would likely appear as an article on Wikipedia again.

It would be in violation of time space for it to exist in two places in the universe at the same time.

Re:Paradox! (1)

wdsci (1204512) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099055)

Actually I think what you're saying is that it would be a violation for it to have been deleted from two places at the same time ;-) Like some sort of information (un)certainty principle...

Re:Paradox! (0, Offtopic)

perlchild (582235) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099125)

Delete link from chain link, keep pointer, relink...

I read something about that in CS class

Unfortunately Wikipedia is going to the dogs (5, Insightful)

syousef (465911) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098833)

I really love Wikipedia and I sure hope I'm wrong, but I think we've seen Wikipedia at it's peek. As with many ventures that become successful they move from innovation to stability and with that become widely popular which creates new pressures and brings in other interests, and then in turn leads to the degradation of the service as people squabble about how things should be done. I've seen this with special interest groups and clubs of all kinds. It can be particularly difficult to counter. An organisation either survives these things and becomes stronger for the learning the members have done, or else it succumbs to the storm of shite and fades into insignificance.

entropy (4, Insightful)

bcrowell (177657) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099301)

I agree with you 100% that Wikipedia has peaked. The quality of most articles is dropping over time, because anybody halfway sane doesn't want to pore autistically over a watchlist of cherished articles to make sure they don't succumb to entropy.

On the other hand, that doesn't mean that every dispute on WP is pointless, or that either side could be right on every issue. One bogus argument that's always posed by people who don't want their articles deleted is that it's not a paper encyclopedia, so there's no reason to keep the whole thing under a certain page count. Well, suppose Fred creates an article on his high school band, Fredsband, which only actually consisted of himself and his golden retriever. Every single time a user searches for "golden retriever," one of the hits is going to be the article on Fredsband. Also, when you have an article that's non-notable, it tends not to be linked to any other articles, and you get these little disjoint subsets of WP that are unhealthy. They can become havens for crackpots, or honeypots for spam links.

Re:entropy (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099487)

suppose Fred creates an article on his high school band, Fredsband, which only actually consisted of himself and his golden retriever. Every single time a user searches for "golden retriever," one of the hits is going to be the article on Fredsband.

I'd argue something like pagerank is needed. When wikipedia is published to DVD, only include articles above a certain pagerank. Sometimes the obscure stuff is actually useful, but most often not. Let the user decide what's worth looking at.

Now that it's on Slashdot (1)

ohxten (1248800) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098841)

It won't be deleted.

Re:Now that it's on Slashdot (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099035)

Yes, an admin got word that the deletion discussion was about to be Slashdotted, and he closed it as "no consensus" (which probably is a true reflection of the state of the discussion at the time) to prevent another Slashdot avalanche.

Self-criticism essential in community encyclopedia (5, Insightful)

Morgaine (4316) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098859)

Shortly thereafter, the Industry Standard again turned its attention to Deletionpedia, reporting that deletion of the article in Wikipedia about Deletionpedia was itself under discussion, suggesting that the article was not being considered for deletion based on "insignificance of the site" but rather "due to perceived criticism of Wikipedia itself."

If the highlighted phrase is true, then it indicates that the high priests at Wikipedia are totally beyond control and beyond the pale.

There is no more important function in a community encyclopedia than self-criticism. It is part of its foundation, a self-referential examination of its integrity and transparency.

I am really hoping that that line from TFA is false, and that the discussion about deleting the Deletionpedia page from Wikipedia is unambiguously declared invalid by WP editors.

Re:Self-criticism essential in community encyclope (3, Insightful)

interiot (50685) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099155)

It's a totally orthogonal issue. If you're suggesting that Wikipedia hides information critical of itself, that's not true, there are many examples in project space [wikipedia.org] . For article space though, it's proper to stick to the same criteria that's used for every other article. Otherwise you're arguing that Star Wars should mention how much it sucked in the movie itself (i.e. in its primary product) rather than just discussing it in the DVD extras.

Re:Self-criticism essential in community encyclope (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099247)

It's not true. See the debate [wikipedia.org] for yourself. The vast majority of the arguments have to do with the scarcity of reliable third-party sources discussing Deletionpedia. The only people who even mentioned intolerance of criticism are people against deletion of the article, using it as a strawman [wikipedia.org] to undermine the opposing argument:

"I don't think keeping this article alive will hurt Wikipedia, but trying to suppress it certainly will. If WP (-defenders) can't stand some criticism..."

"We're not trying to suppress anything. The site itself will go on no matter what we decide here. The question is as to whether the site is notable enough to merit an article about it on Wikipedia."

No one has a problem with criticism of Wikipedia; there is a massive article [wikipedia.org] on that exact topic.

But see what happened? The author said it, you repeated it, now suddenly everyone's going to assume it's fact, without even looking at the discussion. The ability for one person's random opinion to become fact is exactly why Wikipedia is so insistent on reliable sources and citations.

Deletionpedia Belongs On Wikipedia (1, Insightful)

darkmeridian (119044) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098867)

Deletionpedia is newsworthy, especially now that there's a controversy afloat. (See the Streisand Effect.) The appearance of impropriety is often worse than the scandal itself, so Wikipedia ought to just leave the entry be lest it be accused of censorship.

Re:Deletionpedia Belongs On Wikipedia (1)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098935)

It flat out doesn't matter. I have seen countless articles disappear because they were nominated for being "retarded" or "no one cares". SkyOS in perticular is constantly nominated for deletion, I think mainly because some poor asshat wants the OS for free, and can't have it his way.

Re:Deletionpedia Belongs On Wikipedia (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099025)

SkyOS is one of those cases of "no one cares" that's fairly justified. That said, it's slightly less niche than some of the software projects that are one there.

Re:Deletionpedia Belongs On Wikipedia (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099185)

I was thinking Streisand Effect too. Their attempt to get it removed caused it to become legitimately noteworthy. Warrants a "haha" tag here too I think.

I also find it interesting that it's been settled (for now) with a "no consensus" ruling. I wonder if that means "we didn't come to a 100% agreement"? I realize it's not "majority rule" on these things, but there sure are a lot more keepers than deleters, especially once you get past the top 1/4 of the discussion. Actually there are almost no deleters after the halfway point.

Re:Deletionpedia Belongs On Wikipedia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099483)

Remember this: Wikipedia deletion discussions are not a vote. Admins who actually make the deletion decision are free to ignore any comments that make no sense, that obviously disregard WP policies, or are just plain BS. The first appearance of this controversy on Slashdot drove a lot of people to the discussion that had never even logged on to WP before.

Re:Deletionpedia Belongs On Wikipedia (1)

cailith1970 (1325195) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099449)

Deletionpedia is newsworthy, especially now that there's a controversy afloat. (See the Streisand Effect.) The appearance of impropriety is often worse than the scandal itself, so Wikipedia ought to just leave the entry be lest it be accused of censorship.

The amusing part is that I looked up "Streisand Effect" on Wikipedia...

Delete it (5, Funny)

russotto (537200) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098877)

It needs to be deleted, just to ensure that it ends up in Deletionpedia.

Re:Delete it (1)

kabloom (755503) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098945)

It's already on Deletionpedia (specifically it's mentioned on the front page), so it would break a rule that Deletionpedia includes "all things and only things that were deleted from wikipedia" if Deletionpedia had not, itself, been deleted from wikipedia.

Wikipedia editors deleting open source projects (3, Interesting)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098883)

Wikipedia editors have also started deleted popular open source projects which don't have book or magazine articles by anyone aside from projects maintainers or contributors. This does not surprise me that they would be also be deleting other things that show their deletion records as well especially when they are going completely overboard with their deletions.

something to say != something relevant (1, Insightful)

azmeith (705329) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098911)

I don't think there is any value in deletionpedia or any similar repository. Just because you/anybody else/I have something to say does not make it relevant or useful. There is certainly an argument to be made regarding the meaningfulness of that statement when applied to a 'crowd-sourced' and moderated compendium of information. However I am far more comfortable with the idea of a for-the-most-part-ok yet flawed system rather than allow every idiot a soapbox. The latter seems to affect MSM in this country quite a bit and we all know how that is going.

Re:something to say != something relevant (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099095)

What metric do you use to gauge 'value' to Joe Blow down the street, or Some Random Guy five states away? For instance, I see no value in this article [wikipedia.org] , but that doesn't mean it's useless, or the people who wrote and contributed to it are idiots on a soapbox.

Re:something to say != something relevant (5, Insightful)

MrMista_B (891430) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099131)

People like you are why Wikipedia is a failure if what it had intended to be.

How many people have to find something relevant or useful in order to stop it from being deleted from Wikipedia?

A hundered? A thousand? A million?

Nothing like that. Wikipedia is controlled by those what get off on deleting the work of other's, ignoring 'notability' or 'value' or 'usefulness' or 'relevance' entirely. If these few high priests of Wikipedia deem an article, whether it's about Pokemon or CNN, to be something they have a personal bias against, it will be deleted.

Frankly, it seems like Wikipedia has about as much credibility these days as Fox News.

So, that might be an interesting question: Given the fact that Wikipedia is controlled by a very few people with a very narrow view of what's notable, and use that to control what information is contained in Wikipedia, regardless of the truth, veracity, or notability of that information, should Wikipedia be regarded as a source of useful information, or as a propaganda machine to be avoided at all costs?

It's a painful question to have to ask - at one time, I espoused Wikipedia as, well, one of the best examples of the strengths of the internet.

More and more, however, I'm finding that, given the nature of those in control of Wikipedia... I just don't know anymore.

Re:something to say != something relevant (4, Interesting)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099207)

Frankly, it seems like Wikipedia has about as much credibility these days as Fox News.

Hmmm, actually Fox News has more credibility.

The bias on Fox is overt and wholly transparent. The bias on Wikipedia is covert and secretive, though it is of course even more biased and manipulated than Fox.

Re:something to say != something relevant (4, Insightful)

sailingmishap (1236532) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099519)

How many people have to find something relevant or useful in order to stop it from being deleted from Wikipedia?

If these few high priests of Wikipedia deem an article, whether it's about Pokemon or CNN, to be something they have a personal bias against, it will be deleted.

It sounds like you're unfamiliar with Wikipedia's notability guidelines. They're clearly spelled out here [wikipedia.org] . If you read a deletion debate, you'll find that it's this guideline being used to judge articles.

Do you have an example of an article with multiple, reliable independent sources that got deleted? That has been the threshold for inclusion since day one. If you can find an article that got deleted despite meeting the criteria, it would prove your conspiracy theory. Otherwise, you'll have to accept that it's a simple, clear-cut standard that has been applied since the site's inception.

J. L. Borges... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25098913)

...unavailable for comment

Ugh. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25098943)

I'm getting sick of people trying to advertise their little project on Wikipedia then claiming that Wikipedians are a bunch of power hungry whatsits.

Seriously. It's ridiculous how many people think their little game or website deserves an article... a lot of people on /. have probably followed some kind of small FOSS project and now hold a disdain towards Wikipedia just because their little project couldn't get an article.

Blah.

Re:Ugh. (3, Insightful)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099045)

Why doesn't it? The WP administration has said that space is not a concern, so what's the harm?

Re:Ugh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099331)

It's not about how much space there is, it's about maintaining a basic level of quality. If there are no reliable independent sources discussing a subject, how can you write a reliable article about it?

Example: Of course you can use the Harry Potter books as a source for what color Harry Potter's eyes are. No source could improve on that. But if you're trying to write about how many copies of the books were sold, or the controversy over the books, J.K. Rowling is a poor source. This example extrapolates to everything you can possibly write about.

For a subject to be on Wikipedia, it can't just be a one-paragraph summary of what it is or does. That's how articles start, but the goal is for every article to get beyond that. It needs to be a discussion of its history, its impact, its relation to other subjects, etc. An author can't write reliably in depth about his own subject. And if there are no other authors who have written about it, then the article can never get to the level of quality Wikipedia is aiming for. That's why those articles get deleted. They are stunted by the fact that no one else has written about them.

Re:Ugh. (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099067)

The problem with deleting articles on Wikipedia is that as long as it isn't spam it should honestly have a place in Wikipedia. When it comes down to it, a few kilobytes of information even on every single SourceForge project is unlikely to amount to more than a terabyte or two. I'm all for deleting spam but even small 200-500 word articles on something that isn't spam should be kept. And unlike a print encyclopedia where a few more pages could really add up, I doubt that even a terabyte of HD space or a gigabyte of bandwidth more is going to make much of a difference.

Better solution... (3, Funny)

Afecks (899057) | more than 5 years ago | (#25098981)

Just redirect it to here [wikipedia.org] .

Why not fork it? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099007)

Make an Includopedia and a Deletepedia. That way everyone is happy.

The debate is over, article will not be deleted (5, Informative)

Kethinov (636034) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099021)

The debate is over. The result of the discussion was keep. See talk page [wikipedia.org] .

Re:The debate is over, article will not be deleted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099275)

The problem with Wikipedia delete/merge/keep "debates" is the fleeting nature of the end decision. An article "debate" may end with keep, but one or two weeks down the line someone will just pose another AfD and the process will start all over again until the "debate" goes in favour of the delete.

Re:The debate is over, article will not be deleted (5, Informative)

ninjapiratemonkey (968710) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099283)

Technically, the result of the debate was "no consensus", which means that they won't delete it. But it's not that they decided to keep it, it's that they couldn't agree enough to delete it.

Re:The debate is over, article will not be deleted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099393)

The result of the discussion was keep.

No it wasn't. The result was No Consesus.

There is a difference.

Re:The debate is over, article will not be deleted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099465)

Whoops.

I meant No Consensus.

For those having trouble understanding: (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099057)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irony

No loss (1)

xigxag (167441) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099103)

Since, if deleted, the Deletionpedia article on Wikipedia will be archived on Deletionpedia....

I'm a confirmed WP deletionist (-1, Troll)

SurturZ (54334) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099105)

I am definitely a deletionist at WP. I take a similar attitude to the sculptor that removes all the bits of stone that don't look like the statue... I remove all the bits of text that don't look like encyclopedia articles.

Re:I'm a confirmed WP deletionist (5, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099187)

The problem with that is, what does that gain Wikipedia? Nothing. It loses facts. Granted, they might be badly written, or some might be poorly-researched, but deletion doesn't gain Wikipedia anything. Granted, deleting obvious spam written like an advertisement gains Wikipedia something, but deleting articles gains Wikipedia nothing

Ok, I'll admit, it might save them a few kilobytes of bandwidth or a gigabyte of storage, but honestly, bandwidth and storage are dirt cheap these days.

original research (2, Insightful)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099463)

Another reason for deletion is articles that constitute original research [wikipedia.org] rather than encyclopedia articles. I have advocated the deletion of several articles that are really an original synthesis of ideas from unrelated sources. Such articles can be very interesting and perhaps there should be an originalresearchopedia for their bloody carcasses after a successful deletion, but they don't belong on an encyclopedia.

Re:I'm a confirmed WP deletionist (1, Insightful)

FlyingBishop (1293238) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099535)

It loses facts.

Nonsense. You're honestly arguing that because someone, somewhere, spent the 10 seconds to 10 minutes required to put up a half-baked paragraph or two on wikipedia, it must be factual?

We all place entirely too much faith in Wikipedia's accuracy. And that, in a word, is what deleting half-baked articles gains Wikipedia. Accuracy.

Not that it could ever truly be accurate, but still, if there wasn't a focus on deletion of Wikipedia articles, Wikipedia would be about as informative as a straight text dump of every post on Slashdot with moderation info removed. (Actually, Slashdot might win out.)

Re:I'm a confirmed WP deletionist (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099209)

Well... it's not your statue, remember it.

Re:I'm a confirmed WP deletionist (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099231)

Deletionist: "Bah, this statue you people created has too many rocks sticking out..."
*Snap*
Artist: "But... those were arms..."
Deletionist: "NO U SUXORS I MAKE BETTR."

Re:I'm a confirmed WP deletionist (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099263)

Yeah.. except that for an encyclopedia you don't start with a bunch of words and remove them until you have it just right. You start with nothing. You write something. You revise it. Maybe you do remove some. But then you write even more. It should be always growing. I think there should be a tendency to revise articles to get them up to encyclopedia standards, instead of just deleting them because they don't fit the standard yet.

Why I'll never contribute to Wikipedia... (1, Troll)

vanillacokehead (1149783) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099123)

...is simple. There seem to be a plethora of users there who relish intellectual masturbation. I bet a lot of these folks would give God a "B" for creating the universe.

Those articles have been deleted... (5, Funny)

lazy_nihilist (1220868) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099175)

We apologise again for the fault in the deletion. Those articles mentioning the deletion of the articles that have just been deleted, have been deleted.

Interesting suggestion in the AfD comments (4, Interesting)

danaris (525051) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099177)

One thing I noticed in the AfD comments that seems like a pretty good idea was to have any Wikipedia articles that get deleted be instead transwikied to Deletionpedia.

Naturally, that's not as good as not deleting them from Wikipedia in the first place...but it seems to me that at least it solves the problem of the work being lost entirely when the AfD finishes and the article is sent into the aether.

Dan Aris

A good wiki with a bad version control system (5, Interesting)

pfunes (98907) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099259)

The whole debate is caused - IMHO - by having a bad versioning system as the Wikipedia's backend. Deleting and undeleting whole articles should be as transparent and open as deleting and undeleting paragraphs within an article. The history feature provides such transparency. Currently, instead, deleted articles are zapped: inaccesible, unreadable, unrecoverable. Allowing history access (and an option in "advanced search") for deleted articles would make this issue a lot simpler.

alternative solution (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099261)

Maybe it should just be redirected to the Russell's paradox [wikipedia.org] page?

There was once a time... (5, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099313)

There was once a time that Wikipedia was thought up. The professors laughed at the idea, looking down from their leather chairs and fancy bookcases and said that nothing would be accomplished. That nothing would be accurate, that the wisdom of crowds would never produce an encyclopedia. And thus, Wikipedia was born. Built as a modern day Library of Alexandria, it had mottoes of be bold and to ignore all rules. And for a while it thrived, it took the professors by surprise, it became a haven for knowledge, a temple for facts. It grew quickly and spread into almost every written language. And then, the changes started to happen. The moderators who had so loudly proclaimed to ignore all rules had started to become much like the professors that had previously laughed at their attempts. What had started to destroy censorship now was slowly increasing its spread. Moderators turned on users and banned them for the most silly of reasons, users tried to correct errors and were banned for vandalism. And soon it became impossible to tell who were the editors of Wikipedia or who were the bureaucrats running the print encyclopedias.

I will end this post with a quote from George Orwell's Animal Farm

Twelve voices were shouting in anger, and they were all alike. No question, now, what had happened to the faces of the pigs. The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.

Re:There was once a time... (2, Interesting)

MindlessAutomata (1282944) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099371)

Your grandiosity aside, professors laughed at wikipedia because of credibility issues citing random sources.

And they are quite right.

Re:There was once a time... (3, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099401)

Because we all know that all the "primary" sites your teachers always want you to go to never ever have misleading information and are always cited. Honestly, there are a lot of articles, particularly about technology, that Wikipedia is the best source for. Now, I'm not sure if I would write a 100 page book about American History based on Wikipedia, but a paper about most software Wikipedia is going to give you the most information short of talking to the actual developer (because most of the time the project's site is no good and man pages only tell you the flags you can use)

Mike Wooten (3, Interesting)

michaelmalak (91262) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099335)

By coincidence, I happened to just now look up Wikipedia's entry on Mike Wooten [wikipedia.org] , the trooper of Palin's Troopergate, to find out the cause of the divorce.

It's marked for deletion!

a long way from over (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099359)

us: 1

deletionists: 9987687
 
we've a long way to go yet before we can really say this saga is over

Persistence pays off (2, Informative)

fortapocalypse (1231686) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099397)

I once got an article deleted that was fairly obscure, but relevant and worth a place in wikipedia nonetheless. After several months someone nominated it for speedy deletion, and it got deleted! I disputed the deletion with an explanation of why it was relevant, and got it reinstated; at the same time, I left a comment on the page's discussion (a reply back to the guy that deleted it) very professionally and unemotionally defending the article. Although I could tell he was a little peeved, he ended up letting it go and has since not tried to delete it or any other of my further articles.

Wikipedia is run by liberal nazis (0, Flamebait)

Orion Blastar (457579) | more than 5 years ago | (#25099481)

Liberal nazis [amazon.com] who censor things by deleting them. Deleted Wikipedia articles usually end up on Uncyclopedia [uncyclopedia.org] and get made into funny articles that are more factual than the articles on Wikipedia that are not deleted. No offense to modern liberals or classic liberals who are nothing like liberal nazis. Barack Obama is a John F. Kennedy modern liberal and not at all like the liberal nazis that hacked Sarah Palin's email, or liberal nazis on MSNBC, NPR, PBS, Moveon.org, or blogs that do personal attacks and political smears. Not all liberals are nazis, but some if not all of the admins on Wikipedia appear to be. Uncyclopedia is liberal nazi free, just modern liberals, classic liberals, anarchists, communists, libertarians, moderates, conservatives, neocons, independents, and others who join together to write funny, but not stupid, articles. Liberal nazis usually get banned at Uncyclopedia, or we make funny articles about them instead if they keep coming back with web proxies.

At least they aren't Conservapedia [conservapedia.org] the Conservative Wiki that only Neocons can edit.

Read Wikitruth [wikitruth.info] for the reasons why many of us don't want to use Wikipedia anymore. Even a humor Wiki like Uncyclopedia is managed way better than Wikipedia ever will be, and we are all volunteers who do work for free.

The Uncyclopedia article was deleted and put back many times as well on Wikipedia. Apparently Jimbo and the sockpuppet [uncyclopedia.org] Admins think we aren't notable enough to have an article on us.

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25099529)

I guess deletionpedia suggested this to be deleted as an attempt to make a publicity stunt.

Well, it worked since slashdot is apparently full of morons who think that page actually got deleted - while in fact the discussion is over and it has been decided not to delete it, I for one I am tagging this 'getoverit'

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