Four in one Edit

Robin Pepermans
Fri 9 Sep 2011 22:53:57

An idea that I raised during a discussion between the language committee and Wikimedia South Africa was to inform chapters when a request for closing a wiki is made for a language that is spoken in a country which has a Wikimedia chapter. For this I made a list on -- it took me some time but I think it is well worth it.

So when proposing a wiki for closure, you should inform the main chapter listed there so they have a chance to find interested people who can contribute to the respective project.

The list can also be useful when opening projects. If wanted, I or formally the language committee could also directly inform chapters when a wiki is opened in a language spoken in one or more countries covered by chapters.


Date: Sat, 10 Sep 2011 12:37:33
To: Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List <>
From: "Virgilio A. P. Machado" <>
Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Informing chapters about closing/opening wikis (+ useful list)

mwl Mirandés Wikimedia Spain NOT

From :

The Mirandese language (autonym: mirandés or lhéngua mirandesa; Portuguese: mirandês or língua mirandesa) is a Romance language belonging to the Astur-Leonese linguistic group, sparsely spoken in a small area of northeastern Portugal, in the municipalities of Miranda do Douro, Mogadouro and Vimioso. The Portuguese Parliament granted it co-official recognition (along with the Portuguese language) for local matters on 17 September 1998 with the law 7/99 of 29 January 1999.

Mirandese mirandés Spoken in Portugal

Another message from the list most beloved troll

Virgílio A. P. Machado
Posts monitored for answering questions asked on this very same list
Locked account, for telling things as they are: Vapmachado

Date: Sat, 10 Sep 2011 11:37:36

Your mail to 'foundation-l' with the subject

Re: [Foundation-l] Informing chapters about closing/opening wikis (+ useful list)

Is being held until the list moderator can review it for approval.

The reason it is being held:

Post to moderated list

Either the message will get posted to the list, or you will receive notification of the moderator's decision. [My bold] If you would like to cancel this posting, please visit the following URL:[...]

As expected, the message never got posted to the list, and a notification of the moderator's decision was never received.

Given their past performance, described in, for example, Greg Kohs and Peter Damian, Ban and moderate, Survey about recent ban, Lead by example, Request for moderation of Dan Rosenthal and Andrew Garrett, Showdown and further analyzed in What's wrong with this list?, it is clear that the list administrators are not only not up to the task at hand but are also unable to perform the most simple tasks like either seeing to it that a message from a moderated list member gets posted to the list, or send a notification of the moderator's decision.

Since this behavior has been going on for a considerable period of time, and there are no signs of improving, before things get really ugly, and they are forced to leave in disgrace, the list administrators should do themselves a favor: resign.

Anticipating the administrators behavior, and wanting to save some further possible embarrassment to a wikipedian, a copy of the above two messages was sent to the author of the "useful list."

In typical Wikimedia mode, the list was corrected and the "anyone can edit" mantra was repeated in the response.

Another message followed pointing out that such statement overlooked that the user had a Locked account, for telling things as they are: Vapmachado. It was also added that "Although you didn't find it in your heart to thank me, but would rather try to scold me and make a fool of yourself, you are very welcome."

This observation met another typical Wikimedia response about assuming good faith, signed:

Thank you,
[List author first name]

Neither good nor bad faith was assumed. That was completely besides the point. What were obvious were the bad manners, and still the "useful list" author would only find in his heart to close his "last word," and "I'm not going to loose face over this," with a "Thank you" that it is impossible to know what it is for.

"What is the point of all this? What are your intentions?" you may ask. Intentions are besides the point. I saw something wrong, concerning my own country, made in the middle of a much bigger effort. Locked account or not, moderated or not, nothing nor anybody would stop me from contributing with that most insignificant improvement. Even the most distinguished article ever written on any Wikimedia project starts with a single character.


Virgilio A. P. Machado