Monday, July 02, 2007


Yesterday there was an interesting meeting in the Netherlands billed as a "moderator workshop". There were many nl.wikipedians and some of them, myself included, were no nl.wikipedia moderator at all. To my delight this was deemed to be good; it was even considered that the name for this recurring event is wrong; in order to get more interest also outside the fairly limiting group of moderators, it is considered to have these meetings under a different name.

The most interesting presentation was the one where Siebrand informed about the state of play at Commons. I knew that Siebrand was one of those working hard to keep Commons clean and sane. It was another thing to hear him explain how these things are done... seeing the amount of pictures moved, the amount of duplicate pictures deleted. It is really impressive.

At the same meeting there was a guy who was articulating his opposition to Commons and its policies. He gave examples why he was disgusted with Commons. The issue as I understand it is in two things; the balance between the need for getting things done and the need for discussing individual issues and the understanding of the procedures used at Commons.

The need to get things done is easily explained. With 1.6 million images, and a growth that exceeds the English language Wikipedia, it is a big project. With all the pictures of all the different projects that should have their home at Commons, the amount of work that needs doing is mind boggling. On the other hand there are people who have a few pictures, who have strong feelings about their work and or who do not know and understand about the procedures at Commons. There is a balance between these two needs.

Over time, many changes have happened to the procedures at Commons, many things have been automated and have been improved to better reflect the needs that people have. If anything this is what I got from Siebrand's presentation. Siebrand indicated that there is still room for improvement and I got the distinct impression that a lot of work is done to do achieve even more.

AGF, Assume Good Faith, I do expect that the better nl.wikipedia moderator sign up to this notion. I was disappointed when it was not even acknowledged the improvements in Commons that were made. Well, that is probably the difference between a long serving moderator and a moderator that will help the community move forward in this brave new world where we cooperate and seek consensus on a continuously bigger scale.

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