Request for assistance

ICS Emergency.svg

Virgilio A. P. Machado <>
Wed, 5 Jan 2011 19:15:37

To all women and men of good faith who are members of this mailing list, please check the following pages:







and any further information on the user page:


Please let me know:

a) why my request for unblock was never answered,

b) where on page (2) are the occurrences of "harassment,"

c) if after Dec. 23, "he's just returned to do the same thing that lead him to be blocked in the first instance.",

d) where are the occurrences of "continued hostile behavior,"

e) towards what or whom is that "continued hostile behavior,"

f) why my "interesting history" of "cross-wiki" pioneering achievements is never mentioned, a clear violation of a NPOV in decision making.

The accusations of "meatpuppetry and privacy violations" based on highly controverted and irregular cases, may still turn out to be defamatory, and it is not very wise to use them to attack the reputation, honor and good name of this user.


Virgilio A. P. Machado

Wed, 5 Jan 2011 19:36:11

Thanks for the pointer. +1 for PeterSymonds.


M. Williamson
Wed, 5 Jan 2011 20:26:53


Many thanks for the information. I have, after reviewing the evidence you presented, casted my vote in support of Peter Symonds' adminship on Meta.

Muito obrigado pela informação. Depois de avaliar a evidência apresentada, votei a favor da proposta da concessão de poderes administrativos a Peter Symonds em Meta.


Virgilio A. P. Machado <>
Wed, 5 Jan 2011 21:30:47

What does your answer has to do with my request for assistance? As far as I'm concerned you are more then welcome to vote for whomever you want and any way you want. It's none of my business or the business of any of this list members. There seems to be some abuse of your privileges as a member of this list. I would like to call the attention of the moderators to your obvious promotion of an election, something that I don't even recall to have seen here.


Virgilio A. P. Machado

Huib Laurens
Wed, 5 Jan 2011 20:31:02

Thnks for posting that Peter is running for admin... Will support right away.


Virgilio A. P. Machado <>
Wed, 5 Jan 2011 21:51:53

Is this supposed to be funny?

Time to address this matter to the list moderators.


Virgilio A. P. Machado

George Herbert
Wed, 5 Jan 2011 22:02:49

Neither of these was funny; both were backhanded insults to you.

That said - I am not sure what role you think foundation-l should be playing in your being banned from You're claiming the snide responses are off topic and inappropriate. The original request was off topic and inappropriate as well, though not snide.

I am completely not up on the politics on Meta, or the other Wikis you've been banned or long term blocked on, but as a general rule people who are being blocked or banned across multiple wikis are behaving in a way that causes the blocks, even if there are aspects of some of the blocks which are imperfect admin response. There seem to be a number of people on Meta who thought you were behaving inappropriately.

Even if the blocks were abusive and inappropriate, foundation-l isn't a block appeal channel.

-george william herbert

Virgilio A. P. Machado <>
Thu, 6 Jan 2011 15:34:56

A sensible answer and commentary is deeply appreciated. Please accept this user's apologies for not answering in the proper order, something quite out of character. Notifications are received by mail in almost a random order, and comments were being answered through that channel.

It is not up to a mere user to decide if some list members are being uncivil. That's the responsibility of the moderators. It has been said several times, and it may be necessary to repeat it many more times until others eventually get it. The person that can offend or intimidate another has not been born yet. Nobody can offend or intimidate another, for the same reason that that person will not be happy or do as it pleases for the rest of his/her life, just because someone tells him/her so. Nobody has that much power.

The only role that the Foundation-l was expected to play in the unfortunate events unfolding on Meta was, exactly as stated, to be a communication venue with "women and men of good faith who are members of this mailing list" so that they could provide whatever assistance they deemed appropriate and were capable of providing, mainly helping with answers to the six items listed a) through f). So far, nobody as provided that kind of assistance.

A request for assistance is never off topic, anywhere, under any circumstances. If that concept is difficult to grasp, there's no difficulty whatsoever in expanding and explaining it, in as much detail as required.

There was no clue that the events of Foundation wikis could be a matter of politics. They were always seen as matters of policies and procedures, not quite the same thing.

Lets put some of the bans that were mentioned in the proper perspective. brwikimedia and ptwikimedia are the wikis of the Brazilian and Portuguese chapters, that, like the Portuguese Wikipedia are run by the same usual suspects. Please note that according to a recent news item there's about 30 Portuguese active editors (Population: about 10 million).

The work on Meta was being done in an orderly manner until the disruption provoked and caused by the same usual suspects mentioned above. That's the only reason for "being blocked or banned across multiple wikis."

The user is the same. Trouble only started after the interference of the usual suspects of the Portuguese Wikipedia on Meta. Their votes can be seen popping up on the RfA. There has never been a single block on any other Wikimedia project where these editors do not have any influence. The obvious conclusion is that the hostile behavior stays with the usual suspects, not this user.

The unintended consequence is that the usual suspects have granted a single user a disproportionate power and influence: the power of one.

There is no block appeal made on this list. If there is, please quote the sentences where it is made. What was made was a request for assistance "to all women and men of good faith who are members of this mailing list," because of a strong, unshakable and unflinching belief that such persons exist. There is only some doubt if they have been reached yet.


Virgilio A. P. Machado

David Gerard
Wed, 5 Jan 2011 22:06:31

I would say that posting about an RFA on Meta is not specifically off-topic for here, but I wouldn't like it to happen for *every* RFA. It is entirely to your credit that, in posting the link to the RFA, you did not suggest voting in any particular manner.

I'm not sure it's a good idea for others to post their support for Peter's admin nomination - merely on the basis of assuming that any given style of posting will be duplicated until it's a bad idea - but I think it's excusable as all of the people doing so do know how to moderate their enthusiasm.

I would suggest Meta RFAs not be brought up on foundation-l in general, but I would trust in the good sense of contributors (there may, after all, be a case in which doing so is a good idea) rather than making a rule as such.

I do not question your sincerity in posting here. I do think you have no understanding whatsoever of how Wikimedia works, in detail or broad overview, but that's quite different from questioning your sincerity in any way. I see no reason not to assume good faith. An actual troll would have given up long ago.

- d.

Virgilio A. P. Machado <>
Thu, 6 Jan 2011 18:08:26

Another sensible answer and commentary that is also deeply appreciated. Answers are now being given in the proper order.

The user's post was not "about an RFA on Meta." What was posted was a request for assistance "to all women and men of good faith who are members of this mailing list," that had links to a RfA. It was on account of posts made on an RfA and its talk page that the user was asking for whatever assistance was deemed appropriate and capable of being provided, mainly helping with answers to the six items listed a) through f). So far, nobody as provided that kind of assistance.

The fact that the sequence of events started at a RfA was purely circumstantial. They could have happened at any other page, where the user would have made some posts that could be used as a pretext for a certain type of other users and administrators to seek and block the user.

Why a pretext? Because the accusing editor or anybody else haven't provided any evidence on which their accusations and block is based, and that they are willing and able to handle a request to unblock in a reasonable and timely fashion, i.e., providing answers to the six items listed a) through f), now on the user's talk page, but that they were aware much earlier, by the accuser's own post on the ban request:

Neither have they responded to a suggestion, also made on the user's talk page to make the whole matter irrelevant. The users involved have not shown any willingness and openness to dialog, and accommodation. Furthermore, the accusation has been changed, using a privilege that is denied to the user. Given the choice of erasing the strongly oppose vote and his comments on the talk page or being blocked, would the user have any hesitation in choosing the first option? Is a support vote what is so desired? Is unanimity in the voting what's really at stake here? If the editor wants to be administrator that badly, even under these appalling circumstances, and there has not been a single beep as to how he feels about all this "Much Ado About Nothing," what is the problem of extorting one more vote under the threat of an "inmediate & indef block" (sic)? The user would give the "nominee" a thousand votes if he could and if that's what makes everybody happy, get some characters off his back, and let him contribute the best way he can and knows.

The above mentioned behavior makes it very hard to make certain users' good faith believable, mainly when faced with the futility of a previous request for unblock that was never answered (item (a) mentioned above). Just like before, and for the fourth time, the objective is to block the user at all cost, no matter what the reason or its merits. For motives, you'll have to ask those involved. There are people specially trained that could help sort those kind of things. This user does not have the required qualifications.

The user does not take any credit for "not suggest voting in any particular manner," because that was never an issue and he could care less how others vote.

We now have two POVs. One states that they "were backhanded insults." Another that they were "excusable as all of the people doing so do know how to moderate their enthusiasm." You sort it out. "Frankly, My Dear, I Don't Give A Damn."

The suggestion not to bring up Meta RfAs on Foundation-l is therefore besides the point, as that was not the purpose of the request for assistance as already explained. Some users just thought it was great fun to make a mockery of a request for assistance, an unruly, derogatory and outright abusive behavior not unusual on this list, that has been discussed before, on several occasions.

Not question the sincerity of the user in posting on the list is duly appreciated.

There is however a statement that has been repeated to exhaustion: "I do think you have no understanding whatsoever of how Wikimedia works, in detail or broad overview." My first instinct is to let the author of this statement live happily with that belief until the end of his time. Why upset his state of bliss and comfort? Live and let live. Some people believe in much worse or more reproachable things. A colleague of this user once insisted that this user's older brother was one year ahead of them in high school (he was two). To this day, this user still regrets to have disappointed his colleague explaining that they were talking about the user's only brother, and prevented his colleague from dying in blissful ignorance of that small detail. How must he have felt when he realized that he was wrong about something he had absolutely no doubt concerning two brothers?

There's no recollection of any instance where evidence has been provided to support the quoted statement. The user begs to differ and believes that the author of such statement, disseminated in countless occasions and pages, has one of two options: either he provides whatever evidence he has and gives the user equal opportunity for rebuttal in an public forum, or his insistence in stating his "belief" can only be viewed as uncivil and a dissemination of mistrust. One must not forget that the author has recently made an unsavory post about the user ( that does not vouch for the good intentions or good faith, for all that it matters, of "a native speaker of BS." (

It would be unfair not to thank the author and all the remaining cast of characters for the extraordinary entertainment they have provided this user and for all the time they have distracted him from more pressing, boring and outright annoying obligations. It has been great fun since day one and this user is looking forward to many more healthy years of great fun. Thank you all for being there for him, and for being what you are.

Y'all have a Merry Kings' Day.


Virgilio A. P. Machado

The Psych That Almost Wasn't


Is there a Heaven for Pumpkinheads?

Marc Riddell
Sun, 13 Mar 2011 13:54:06



Yaroslav M. Blanter
Sun, 13 Mar 2011 14:06:11

It looks like there is no article on him, and the NYT article is clearly a reliable source.

I have heard a similar story from Anton Zeilinger. I mentioned that I am involved with Wikipedia, and he told me how he once tried to correct the article about him on de.wp changing the name of a school he graduated from, the edit was reverted (proof: ). I think finally he had to scan his diploma, put it on his homepage, and then the article was amended.


Virgilio A. P. Machado <>
Mon, 14 Mar 2011 02:10:39

I regret to inform that there is indeed an article on Zick Rubin on Wikia, like Zick Rubin writes: "I was alarmed to find the following item, from a site on psychology" (

There is life beyond Wikipedia, no matter how difficult it is for some of you to accept.

Your most dear and favorite troll,

Virgilio A. P. Machado a.k.a. The Terror of Meta, Brazilian Wikipedia and assorted other Wikimedia projects.

Yaroslav M. Blanter
Mon, 14 Mar 2011 16:52:55

Sorry, I meant there is no Wikipedia article on him (at least not in English), though he is notable, and the NYT article can be used as a source to create such an article.


Virgilio A. P. Machado <>
Tue, 15 Mar 2011 05:08:13

I understand. Thank you so very much for clearing the misunderstanding. No need to apologize. I write things that people don't understand more often than not. Not only you were very kind, which I appreciate very much, but you're absolutely right. Zick Rubin has also authored several books. Wikipedias deserve to have an article on him.

Best regards,

Virgilio A. P. Machado (Vapmachado, four infinite blocks, one deleted user page, two vandalized user pages, one ban from a mailing list, one ban from a IM community, and still counting)