User talk:Roger Davies/Archive 2012

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possible highjacked barnstar

I noticed a barnstar from you at User:Katarighe/Awards. Since you were familiar with the account this person is claiming to be it may be helpful if you would weighh in at the discussion of this matter on my talk page. Beeblebrox (talk) 00:55, 8 January 2012 (UTC)

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On conflicts of interest

Out of curiosity: if an editor has professional training in medicine and works in health care, would you consider him/her to have a conflict of interest (in any meaningful sense) when editing medical articles? What about when editing articles on alternative medicine? MastCell Talk 04:19, 11 January 2012 (UTC)

Well, it's certainly arguable in the general sense that a medical professional is likely to support the medical status quo and likely to be sceptical about heterodoxy. Against that, any conclusions based on stereotypes are bound to be both speculative and inaccurate. (As an example, my company sent me to see a well-known Harley Street consultant a few years ago and when I was waiting I noticed from his literature that in parallel to his conventional medical practice he ran a homeopathic one.) I suppose the underlying point too is that the Wikipedia model is very poorly equipped to investigate individuals and their belief systems and, when we can form opinions based on edits alone and whether or not they are disruptive, it is wholly unnecessary to delve into editors' private/professional lives.  Roger Davies talk 05:18, 11 January 2012 (UTC)
Wikipedia supports (and indeed, attempts to recruit) MDs, PhDs, JDs, and other working professionals precisely because they have a long term history in the field. In all honesty, which would you prefer to scratch that. Which do you think the general reader expects to read: Burzynski Clinic written by a practicing oncologist, Burzynski Clinic written by a member of the lay public who has read newspaper reports about the matter, or Burzynski Clinic written by Marc Stephens? Somehow, I expect that most people's answer is going to be a combination of the first and second choices, and not the last one.

But moreover: The Wikipedia dispute resolution model has as its underlying foundation an assumption that every editor is working in good faith to produce what is in their mind a neutral, well-sourced encyclopedia. Now, we can quibble over what neutral and well-sourced truly mean and if they can even ever have a common meaning (I'm sure the postmodernists would have a field day with that). But at the end of the day, I think it should be obvious that someone who is motivated by something besides those principles is going to have a difficult time editing on Wikipedia how we would like to them to edit. If that person already have a history of poor behavior as documented by warnings and sanctions from multiple administrators and the Committee...well I'm just astonished that the Committee is still even considering this appeal. NW (Talk) 20:29, 11 January 2012 (UTC)

If an article is comprehensive, well-written and neutral, I don't suppose anyone cares for a moment who worked on it. This is why longstanding policy is to scrutinise the edits, not the editor. It is impossible to accurately determine what someone's motivation is attempts to do so, via speculation, innuendo and coatracking, introduce a host of new problems, of disproportionate intensity and complexity to any they might solve.  Roger Davies talk 06:51, 12 January 2012 (UTC)

Requesting your attention

I hate to bother you about this, but I've discussed it with a few other arbitrators, and Jclemens has suggested that I contact you.

There is currently a request for amendment to the race and intelligence case that needs attention from someone who's experienced with the case. I think you're the best arbitrator to deal with this, because most of the other arbitrators aren't as familiar as you with the history of this case and all the users involved. For example Silktork suggested that I address this issue in an RFC/U, but my topic ban does not allow me to start an RFC/U about R&I related matters. There was also an AE thread that Mathsci posted about this conflict, which was completely ignored by administrators until it was archived while still open. I think this indicates that nothing but an arbitration amendment is likely to resolve the issue.

This seems like a very divisive issue, and most of the editors who opposed me on R&I articles before my topic ban have gotten involved in it. As per Jclemens's suggestion, I'd appreciate anything you can do to resolve it. -Ferahgo the Assassin (talk) 18:06, 15 January 2012 (UTC)

Is there any reason why you're not following the advice in WP:SHARE? (You can email a (brief) response if you prefer.)  Roger Davies talk 07:56, 17 January 2012 (UTC)
My apologies, but I'm not sure what you mean. If you're referring to honoring my topic ban from R&I due to WP:SHARE with Captain Occam, I do think I'm following that. Before Occam made his amendment request in September, he checked with Arbcom first to make sure his topic ban still allowed for that, and was told that it did: [1] "no topic ban ever forbids an editor from requesting good-faith changes to sanctions in previous cases." This was in the context of him asking for an interaction ban with Mathsci, which is the same thing I'm requesting now, due to Mathsci continuing to disregard the advice that you and Cool Hand Luke gave him about this last time. Occam and I are both covered by the same topic ban, so since his topic ban allowed him to make this amendment request, I'm assuming that mine does too. Is that what you're asking, or am I misunderstanding? -Ferahgo the Assassin (talk) 08:48, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

Betacommand 3 needs your votes

You are listed as an active Arbitrator in the Betacommand 3 case, but you have yet to vote on any remedies. I understand that you may be busy with other concurrent cases, but at this point a wide spectrum of remedies have been put up for consideration. ASCIIn2Bme (talk) 08:15, 20 January 2012 (UTC)

Quick question

Hi Roger, hope you're doing well. Regarding a question I had asked to another arb, would you agree with the answer given by David Fuchs (talk · contribs)?

Thank you for your time, — Cirt (talk) 18:09, 26 January 2012 (UTC)


Why are you posting proposals on the Workshop page of the TimidGuy ban appeal? You're one of the drafting arbitrators, and overdue on a proposed decision, which you said you were just about finished drafting and about to share with the other arbs nearly a full month ago. Is this part of your proposed decision as a drafting arb, in which case I would have expected it on the Proposed Decision page, or have you just decided to come late to the party to post your own proposals? Fladrif (talk) 14:29, 3 February 2012 (UTC)

No need to be puzzled: this is standard (but not invariable) practice. Many arbitrators, including me, run proposals past everyone in the workshop prior to posting publicly.  Roger Davies talk 14:59, 3 February 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the explanation. I hadn't seen this sort of pattern before, so it struck me as odd, but I haven't read all that many ArbCom cases, and now I see that it has been done in at least one of the other recent cases as well. Fladrif (talk) 15:14, 3 February 2012 (UTC)


Hello, Roger Davies. Please check your email; you've got mail!
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Daicaregos (talk) 14:31, 6 February 2012 (UTC)

Thanks anyway, Daicaregos (talk) 13:40, 8 February 2012 (UTC)
I'm very sorry indeed to hear that,  Roger Davies talk 14:05, 8 February 2012 (UTC)

Roger, we now have a situation where one of our most valued Users has retired. Can you help explain this? Thanks. --Mais oui! (talk) 13:56, 8 February 2012 (UTC)

No, I'm afraid I can't explain it,  Roger Davies talk 14:05, 8 February 2012 (UTC)
Thanks anyway. --Mais oui! (talk) 14:22, 8 February 2012 (UTC)

MSU Interview

Dear Roger Davies,

My name is Jonathan Obar user:Jaobar, I'm a professor in the College of Communication Arts and Sciences at Michigan State University and a Teaching Fellow with the Wikimedia Foundation's Education Program. This semester I've been running a little experiment at MSU, a class where we teach students about becoming Wikipedia administrators. Not a lot is known about your community, and our students (who are fascinated by wiki-culture by the way!) want to learn how you do what you do, and why you do it. A while back I proposed this idea (the class) to the community HERE, where it was met mainly with positive feedback. Anyhow, I'd like my students to speak with a few administrators to get a sense of admin experiences, training, motivations, likes, dislikes, etc. We were wondering if you'd be interested in speaking with one of our students.

So a few things about the interviews:

  • Interviews will last between 15 and 30 minutes.
  • Interviews can be conducted over skype (preferred), IRC or email. (You choose the form of communication based upon your comfort level, time, etc.)
  • All interviews will be completely anonymous, meaning that you (real name and/or pseudonym) will never be identified in any of our materials, unless you give the interviewer permission to do so.
  • All interviews will be completely voluntary. You are under no obligation to say yes to an interview, and can say no and stop or leave the interview at any time.
  • The entire interview process is being overseen by MSU's institutional review board (ethics review). This means that all questions have been approved by the university and all students have been trained how to conduct interviews ethically and properly.

Bottom line is that we really need your help, and would really appreciate the opportunity to speak with you. If interested, please send me an email at (to maintain anonymity) and I will add your name to my offline contact list. If you feel comfortable doing so, you can post your name HERE instead.

If you have questions or concerns at any time, feel free to email me at I will be more than happy to speak with you.

Thanks in advance for your help. We have a lot to learn from you.


Jonathan Obar --Jaobar (talk) 07:26, 12 February 2012 (UTC)

Young June Sah --Yjune.sah (talk) 04:22, 15 February 2012 (UTC)

TimidGuy PD

Just a quick thanks for getting the TimidGuy PD in before the Signpost publication deadline. Much appreciated. :) Lord Roem (talk) 18:09, 20 February 2012 (UTC)

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Not sure how to answer this, Evidence Deadline, my first instinct is that accepting incoming information has a dead line but, that deadline does not cover the response of the incoming information. IDK. In the interest of responding to an editor's query I have also posted this message at Tiptoety's talk for whom ever can respond first. thanx. Cheers Mlpearc (powwow) 17:25, 27 March 2012 (UTC)

Harassment of editors and Arbcom transparency

On my talk page at User_talk:Russavia#Comment_from_AGK, there is a discussion between myself and your fellow Arb User:AGK, concerning an issue which came to the attention of Arbcom. As the various links and diffs show, many editors saw the recent RFC/U against User:Fae as harassment, at best, and as homophobic harassment, at worst.

AGK firstly stated that he "voted" to ban Delicious Carbuncle, then has "corrected" himself to state that he merely was in favour of the Committee reviewing the case; either way there was opposition on the Committee to either banning Delicious Carbuncle or even reviewing the harassment that Fae was being subjected to.

As an Arb, the community elected you to represent the community for the community. The Committee time and time again pushes on editors who come before it that transparency is essential in our editing; in fact, transparency is one of the key tenets of this project, however the Arbcom often does not act in the same transparent way that it (and the community) expects of the community itself.

AGK states on my talk page that one can only expect a transparent hearing if a request for arbitration is filed, and states that most Arbcom business is conducted this way. This notion is somewhat correct, but it is also very wrong. As the committee time and time makes a point of stating that community transparency is essential, the community also expects the same of the Committee -- at all times. The Committee also makes many decisions "behind closed doors", and when pushed to explain decisions cites various "get out of jail free cards" to avoid being transparent to the community-at-large. This includes decisions such as banning editors for things done offwiki which can't clearly be attributed to that editor, or unbanning editors with a history of socking, etc, etc.

In aid of this, and in the interests of transparency to the Community at large, I am asking that you answer the following questions:

  1. Did you discuss the harassment of Fae on the Arbcom-l mailing list?
  2. If you did discuss this on the mailing list, were you in favour or against the Committee reviewing the information?
  3. If the discussion got to anything resembling a vote, did you vote in favour or against banning Delicious Carbuncle?

These are very simple questions which one is able to answer if they are truly for transparency both on the Committee and in the community in general, and I would expect that many in the community would be wanting transparent answers to these questions.

The last thing, it is of course Fae's choice if he wishes to request a case for Arbitration, but these questions are not being asked to have an end-run around the Arbitration process, but are being asked in the interests of transparency on a specific example that the Committee was aware of and refused to act upon. I would expect Fae and other editors (especially LGBT editors) would be wanting transparent answers here now, before deciding if they wish to act. Russavia ლ(ಠ益ಠლ) 07:54, 2 April 2012 (UTC)

In response to your questions: (i) No, I didn't; (ii) Not applicable; (iii) Not applicable. On the broader general issue, per this policy, this policy, this policy, and various other policies, the community - with good reason - does not expect the committee to be transparent in all its deliberations.  Roger Davies talk 09:33, 2 April 2012 (UTC)

Dispute resolution survey

Dispute Resolution – Survey Invite

Hello Roger Davies. I am currently conducting a study on the dispute resolution processes on the English Wikipedia, in the hope that the results will help improve these processes in the future. Whether you have used dispute resolution a little or a lot, now we need to know about your experience. The survey takes around five minutes, and the information you provide will not be shared with third parties other than to assist in analyzing the results of the survey. No personally identifiable information will be released.

Please click HERE to participate.
Many thanks in advance for your comments and thoughts.

You are receiving this invitation because you have had some activity in dispute resolution over the past year. For more information, please see the associated research page. Steven Zhang DR goes to Wikimania! 11:08, 5 April 2012 (UTC)


Hello, Roger Davies. Please check your email; you've got mail! The subject is "Wikipedia Signpost Inquiry".
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Lord Roem (talk) 15:38, 7 April 2012 (UTC)

One week late

Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Race_and_intelligence/Review/Proposed_decision. Hipocrite (talk) 11:43, 9 April 2012 (UTC)

Yes, posting it today/tomorrow.  Roger Davies talk 11:48, 9 April 2012 (UTC)


I might have been unclear, but I was attempting to say he was responsible for 88% of the accurate reports. I didn't evaluate what % of the reports he submitted that were accurate, but I suspect without analysis that it was over 75%. Hipocrite (talk) 13:51, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for the clarification, I'll amend it.  Roger Davies talk 14:05, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

Extension of voluntary topic ban to all project space

Hi Roger. I am repeating this here since it seems relevant and will help you reach a decision more rapidly. I made two sets of reponses on the PD talk page, the second set of which is not really that important and you can ignore. I will repeat the first one here:

I have not said this before, simply because it has never in fact arisen before. However, to help arbitrators reach a decision and since it means very little to me, I am quite willing at this stage to extend unconditionally my current indefinite voluntary withdrawal from editing article and article talk space related to R&I to all of project space. This is not a big deal for me and, if I read past and present comments by Roger Davies and other arbitrators correctly, it would be a way of clearing the air. I am quite good at spotting Mikemikev socks, but that is a minor loss.

I hope this is genuninely helpful for you and the other arbitrators. I apologize for the amount of time you have all had to spend on this, when the above kind of remedy could have been suggested long ago. Regards, Mathsci (talk) 15:10, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

It's unlikely that my colleagues would accept a second voluntary restriction.  Roger Davies talk 07:41, 17 April 2012 (UTC)
I have decided to do so anyway, whatever happens, for the reasons I've already stated. Mathsci (talk) 08:05, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

History of non-arbitration of content disputes

Roger, I'm a regular worker at Third Opinion, DRN, and am one of the current coordinators at MedCab. Together with Steven Zhang I'm working up a presentation for Wikimania, and part of my brief is to give a history of dispute resolution. One thing I'm trying to track down is when ARBCOM first made the firm decision to not handle content disputes. By comparing the current policy page to the prior one, I see that the policy adopted in June, 2011, converted the prior policy statement that "The Committee will primarily investigate interpersonal disputes." to "The Committee does not rule on content." In the talk page discussion that preceded it, I also saw in this comment that you said, "You need only to look back through the failed requests for arbitration to see just how often we do turn down content cases to see how strongly this ethos of division of responsibilities is embedded in the committee." This would seem to imply that there were instances in which ARBCOM did not turn down content disputes prior to that policy revision. Were there instances in which ARBCOM arbitrated and made final decisions in purely or primarily content disputes? I know that the content/conduct dichotomy was not as rigid in the very earliest days of ARBCOM as it is now, but did it continue into the later days of ARBCOM? Any pointers you might provide would be very much appreciated. Best regards, TransporterMan (TALK) 03:20, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

Sekrit evidence

I want to confirm that MathSci was given the opportunity to view and respond to the sekrit evidence that CO and FtA forwarded to ArbCom, given your statement earlier that "Of course, per admissibility of evidence, the "accused" will be given an opportunity to respond." Please confirm. Thanks! Hipocrite (talk) 20:13, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

Nothing was ever sent to me. I contacted NYB and Casliber about this by email. My understanding is that no private evidence from FtA or CO has been used, but that is only my personal reading. Arbcom has told me nothing at all about "private evidence". The review has not proceeded in a particularly transparent way, but that is not the fault of the arbitration committee, as far as I can see Mathsci (talk) 20:34, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
I'd like this clarified too. The evidence page says that evidence on private matters may be sent by email to the committee. I assumed it was okay for me to do so. When I sent in my private evidence, David Fuchs confirmed it had been received by the committee. But it does not appear to have not been used or discussed with Mathsci. I don't understand why not, since I followed the instructions on how to submit it. -Ferahgo the Assassin (talk) 21:25, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
So you're happy with your emails going to Mathsci? If you can confirm that, I'll forward them but I suggest you think very carefully indeed before you decide to do that. Roger Davies talk 21:45, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
From your comment below, it sounds like my private evidence was declined. If you've decided to not use it, then there is no point in forwarding it to Mathsci. By the way, this is the first I've heard that my private evidence was declined because these aren't "exceptional circumstances" - why didn't you tell me this when I submitted it a month ago? If I'd known this at the time I obviously would have wanted to restructure my public evidence at least somewhat.
When you asked me and Mathsci for evidence of personal attacks and battleground conduct, you said I could send it to the committee privately. If I do that, can I be sure it won't be declined again because of another procedural issue? -Ferahgo the Assassin (talk) 22:21, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
Let's get this clear: I took the view that much of the contents of your emails simply weren't relevant to the case. Other arbitrators may feel differently. For example, if a case only concerns Defendant X, then I want to hear evidence about Defendant X, not about C, D and E, unless the evidence about C, D and E leads us directly and swiftly to Defendant X. In my view it didn't. Again, other arbitrators may feel differently. This has nothing to do with procedural declines. There was some genuinely private material but that had nothing to do with Mathsci (and therefore didn't need to go to him as it wasn't about him) and was subsequently checked independently.

On your second point, you asked if you could submit it by email because you have privacy concerns. I'm unable to decide whether it meets the criteria until I've seen it and I'm certainly not going to prejudge it.  Roger Davies talk 22:43, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

That's not quite what I'm asking: If I submit my evidence by email, might you decline it just because you think the privacy concerns aren't significant enough, even if the diffs are relevant otherwise? -Ferahgo the Assassin (talk) 23:35, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
I'm not quite sure what you mean by "decline it". Your emails of 24 and 26 March went to the entire committee the day they were sent. Obviously I can't speak for my colleagues, but as far as this review goes, if the "private matters" are outside policy, are not obviously actionable, and/or substantively already in evidence, what is left to do?  Roger Davies talk 15:07, 25 April 2012 (UTC)
I have around 20 more diffs. I think it's indisputable that they demonstrate a battleground attitude, but I'm not certain that you'll think the privacy concerns warrant them being submitted in private (I think they do, I'm just not totally sure you'll agree). My question is: If I send email evidence that clearly demonstrates battleground behavior, but you don't think the privacy concerns are important, is there any danger the evidence won't be used at all for that reason? -Ferahgo the Assassin (talk) 20:01, 25 April 2012 (UTC)
How could there be privacy concerns in diffs? If there were, you need to get them oversighted, right now. This is absurd. ArbCom needs to release the emails. Hipocrite (talk) 20:06, 25 April 2012 (UTC)
As far as I am aware the private evidence can only be two emails sent by me. The email to CO contained a sentence that explicitly gave my permission for him to forward it to arbcom if he wished to do so. Its main content was already disclosed on wikipedia in September 2011. The email to Ferahgo the Assassin has already been reproduced on the PD talk page, with the redaction of one name. At no stage has Ferahgo the Assassin requested permission from me to forward that email to third parties. Mathsci (talk) 21:41, 25 April 2012 (UTC)

(od) People send us emails all the time. However, material is only accepted as evidence at the Committee's discretion and only "in exceptional circumstances, typically where significant privacy, harassment or legal issues are involved". If the emails are going to be used as evidence by the Committee, then the other side gets an opportunity to comment via a private hearing. Where we rely on private evidence, we say so in the FOFs.  Roger Davies talk 21:45, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

Yes, except of course that none of that is true. In the Abortion case, ArbCom solicited and apparently received private evidence (ironically, from Captain Occam and Ferahgo) despite the absence of any "exceptional circumstances". And the private evidence apparently formed the basis of a Workshop proposal by an Arbitrator. I wasn't given an opportunity to comment, privately or publicly, before the Arb's proposal was put forth (as a result, Jclemens was unaware that I'd explicitly cleared one of the actions in question with the Committee before taking it, a point which I would have brought up had I been invited to comment earlier).

I complained about this at the time as a violation of the Arbitration policy, and Jclemens responded by disputing the definition of "evidence" (thread). Your description does outline how ArbCom is supposed to function, though. MastCell Talk 21:58, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

Indeed. I mentioned exactly the same problem during the abortion arbcom case. The corresponding diff from the initial submission of FtA-CO has been linked to the PD page as an example of a personal attack and/or battleground behaviour. The same applies to my clarification to Casliber on the discussion page of Jclemens' 2011 arbcom election page. Jclemens has been told about both diffs (they relate directly to him) and appears to have no qualms about using them to support a FoF about me. In addition to having DeviantArt friends edit on their behalf, from January 2012 up till now FtA-CO have persisently attempted to make false claims of harassment (repeated unsubstantiated claims constitute a personal attack) and have persistently lobbied arbitrators on-wiki and off-wiki with false claims that privacy issues are involved. Captain Occam was already site-banned by Risker in December 2011 for precisely that kind of WP:BATTLEGROUND behaviour; it has now been repeated through or by a proxy-editor. Mathsci (talk) 01:50, 25 April 2012 (UTC)

Arbitration amendment

Roger, in your comment here you suggested lifting the other extant sanction as well (the voluntary restrictions). I did think about appealing that at the same time but decided against submitting an "omnibus" amendment request, as I felt it was better to take a step-by-step approach. I have to say I'm deeply frustrated by the way the old sanctions have been used against me as a kind of cudgel and for baiting. Do you think I should amend my request to cover both sets of sanctions, so that we can get this sorted out in one go? Prioryman (talk) 19:04, 4 May 2012 (UTC)

That's certainly one way forward, or you can do it step by step, if you prefer.  Roger Davies talk 19:49, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
I only thought about doing it step by step in order to avoid drama. However, that seems rather moot given recent events on AN/I, so I might as well go for the omnibus approach after all. Prioryman (talk) 19:57, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
Roger, please see Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Amendment#Additional statement by Prioryman. Since you were the author of the original ARBSCI decision, might you consider drafting a motion to resolve the matter? Prioryman (talk) 22:56, 4 May 2012 (UTC)


Are you available to do a checkuser right now? - NeutralhomerTalk • 10:55, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

Provided it's not complicated, yes.  Roger Davies talk 13:28, 6 May 2012 (UTC)
Well, SilkTork had said one wasn't necessary, so I guess I don't need one. Sorry to bother ya. :) - NeutralhomerTalk • 14:09, 6 May 2012 (UTC)

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I'm picking on you because you did the featured article work for Hamlet. What can you write about intermissions? Jonathan de Boyne Pollard (talk) 19:00, 9 May 2012 (UTC)

Roman Polanski Arbcom

I posted a reply on the Roman Polanski matter in Arbcom: Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case#Statement_by_Psalm84 Psalm84 (talk) 15:51, 11 May 2012 (UTC)

La Treille

Hi Roger.

On 10 March I was invited by friends to stay with them on the outskirts of Aubagne. On the Sunday (11 March) we went in the early morning to La Treille, 10 minutes away by car, and my friend, Didier Quertier, took several pictures for me, two of which I uploaded onto wikipedia the next day. A picture of the fountain, dating from 1871, and of Pagnol's grave in the cemetery down the hill. Someone is now claiming that these pictures are illegal because of French laws. Ronhjones describes the picture of the fountain as a "panoramic view".File:Fontaine-La-Treille.jpg We do have panoramas of Marseille in the article there, also taken in France. This however is of a monument occupying approximately a space of only a few cubic metres. Please could you comment there as you are familiar with La Treille and with wikipedia policy. Here are the reports Wikipedia:Possibly unfree files/2012 May 12#File:Fontaine-La-Treille.jpg Wikipedia:Possibly unfree files/2012 May 12#File:Tombeau-Pagnol-La-Treille.jpg Here is a poorer quality image of the grave uploaded on commons by a French wikipedian.File:Marseille-Pagnol94.jpg Didier's picture is of better quality and shows the view down the hill also.File:Tombeau-Pagnol-La-Treille.jpg Regards, Mathsci (talk) 23:31, 12 May 2012 (UTC)

Many thanks Roger for your comments. I appreciate that. Regards, Mathsci (talk) 18:20, 13 May 2012 (UTC)

Banned or not

Hello. You mentioned the conduct of a party in a current ArbComm review towards a "banned user", who is presumably the person who at one time operated the account Echigo mole (talk · contribs). There is no evidence that this person has in fact been banned at all (although one party has repeated the claim on numerous occasions). Perhaps it would be a good opportunity for AC to rule on that issue. It would seem to be covered by objective (1) of the review's terms of reference, and it seems that there is no objection to extending the scope of the remedies to user who were not explicitly mentioned at the outset. Until then, it seems incorrect to use refer to that person in this way. Thanks. (talk) 16:14, 13 May 2012 (UTC)

Not wanting to prejudge this but is there any need for ArbCom to get involved? Echigo mole is indefinitely blocked for socking and, at first sight, because of their history subsequent socking, it seems unlikely any admin would unblock them. This is how a block becomes what's known as a de facto ban. Nevertheless, they could request an unblock on their talk page and see what happens.  Roger Davies talk 17:46, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
Just to clarify, then, it seems that this person, whoever they may be, is to be regarded as banned, and this entitles any user to revert any posting that they think might have been written by them, without fornmality, and irrespective of any other considerations? This seems an open invitation to abuse, but I only want to clarify the situation -- if that's what ArbComm wants ... (talk) 21:21, 13 May 2012 (UTC)
Given the history of abuse by IP editors on that IP range, yes, that's pretty much correct. The purpose of Wikipedia is to build an encyclopedia not to let random people turn up when they like just to take potshots at various established editors.  Roger Davies talk 09:03, 14 May 2012 (UTC)


Wikimedia received an inquiry that involved Amazigh. I see you are active in Wikiproject Morocco, and have consdierable language skills so I thought I'd check with you. Do you know the language?--SPhilbrick(Talk) 13:49, 14 May 2012 (UTC)

Nope, it's Berber, which I don't know at all, I'm afraid. The guy who does speak some/it is FayssalF. He's not been around much lately but he does have email anabled and he is very helpful. I hope this helps,  Roger Davies talk 14:20, 14 May 2012 (UTC)
Thanks, I tried FayssalF, but saw no recent activity. However, I'll try email.--SPhilbrick(Talk) 15:00, 14 May 2012 (UTC)

User bugging me

Hi Roger,

I have disclosed my other account that I currently do not use to Arbcom (to you). Now a user who has previously started an Arbcom case against me is bugging me with accusations of me being a sock puppet. Can you please have a look at the discussion and stop this. User_talk:POVbrigand#Other_account

Ever since he failed to get me kicked of the project with that Arbcom case he is bugging me with the same insinuations [2]

thanks, --POVbrigand (talk) 15:37, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

I did not make any accusations of sock puppetry, and that was never my intent. What I was looking for was if there was any conditions on the change. The impression I had was that your account would be limited to being a SPA. IRWolfie- (talk) 23:11, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

clean start account

Copied from User talk:POVbrigand for context. I'm here following a request on my talk page. POVbrigand is a Wikipedia:Clean start account not, strictly, an alternate account. The older account was disclosed to ArbCom last year. There's no time overlap (ie the older account was abandoned several weeks before POVbrigand started editing); there are no overlapping article edits; and the previous account's block log is clean.  Roger Davies talk 17:21, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

In reference to your comment here: [3]. I thought clean start applied only to accounts that there was no intention to ever use again? Particularly: The old account must be clearly discontinued, I'm unsure if this refers to de-activated or simply not used. IRWolfie- (talk) 23:07, 16 May 2012 (UTC)

Not editing for a year seems "clearly discontinued" to me.  Roger Davies talk 13:30, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
But there is an intention to re-use the older account at some future stage. IRWolfie- (talk) 13:44, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
Also, the reason why I asked was I was curious if there were any specific topic limitations placed on the account, i.e cold fusion only. IRWolfie- (talk) 13:46, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
In that case, it's a (dormant) alternate account after all. It's unrestricted. Now I don't know where this is leading but unless you get there very quickly, it's unlikely I will have anything constructive to add.  Roger Davies talk 13:51, 17 May 2012 (UTC)
I'm not leading anywhere, that's all I was trying to find out. Cheers. IRWolfie- (talk) 13:55, 17 May 2012 (UTC)

A Forrest Gump moment?

This (especially the last part) seems unusually unconstructive to me. Are you sure your account is not hacked? --Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:31, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Do prolific contributors get a get-out-of-jail-free card or not? The community probably needs to resolve definitively this one way or another. Half the community thinks this is how it should be; the other half thinks they ought to know better. My own view is that the edits of longstanding contributors are mitigation not exoneration.  Roger Davies talk 14:52, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
That's not the aspect I was concerned about - although I think one needs to weight the contritions against any complaints. What I found very much out of line was the threat (or call it "suggestion") that a reform of ArbCom would start with further restricting community participation and criticism ("effective restraint of the public galleries, in particular with regard to attacking the judges"). --Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:58, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Further restricting? There are no restrictions at all. I cannot remember the last occasion when someone was blocked for trolling or baiting an arbitrator. heavy talk page bandwidth is a major problem: it's difficult to keep up with; most of it is assertion; and the discussions are heavily polarised. I agree on the contrition front: that was something that seems to me to be missing in the last case.  Roger Davies talk 15:07, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Arbcomm are in control of the proceedings. Failure to restrict trolling is your fault, no-one else's William M. Connolley (talk) 15:29, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
The last occasion when someone was blocked for trolling/baiting an Arbitrator? You'd have to go all the way back in pre-history to December 2011. And William hit the nail on the head: most ArbCom cases are heavily trolled, but redacting case pages is the province of clerks and Arbs, so it's virtually impossible for anyone else to restrict trolling. I once made the mistake of removing trolling on a case page by a banned user, and one of your colleagues tried to have me sanctioned for doing so. MastCell Talk 17:36, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Thats not exactly true - you hold the vast majority of your time offwiki where the gallery can neither watch nor comment, apparently for no reason othet than embarrassment/avoiding accounrabity, aka the willingness of some to participate only in sekrit. Hipocrite (talk) 15:14, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Huh? Most off-wiki stuff is initiated by the parties emailing us. Very little secret stuff goes on.  Roger Davies talk 15:22, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Many ArbCom pages are off-limits to mere mortals. ArbCom is doing a large part of its work behind a veil on mailing lists or private wikis. None of this was the case when the galaxy was young, furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real furry creatures from Alpha Centauri, and, more germane, ArbCom enjoyed innate respect. Now it seems to settle for a kind of Cartman authoritah, consciously or not. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 15:25, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
Many? You'd think, wouldn't you, that if ArbCom was doing all its work in secret then voting on cases simply would be a rubberstamping exercise. Or do you think we pretend to publicly disagree in order to prove that we're not doing everything in secret? Or whatever ;)  Roger Davies talk 15:32, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

Topic ban for Brews

I don't think this will work well, as the problems with Brews' editing are not really topic related. An important issue is that Brews editing style (particulary failure to adapt that when faced with opposition) brings him into conflict with a few editors because he typicaly chooses to edit in certain small subfields of physics and math. As I tried to explain to Brews, he would be better off editing one of the many other topics within physics or math.

Then just as the last time, what the topic ban paradoxically does is actually make exercising that option to move away from the problem area more difficult. E.g. he could now start to edit an article on, say, determinants and then the whole brouhaha with Blackburne could start all over again.

There are articles that need expansion and there Brews is doing fine, e.g. at Fourier transform he is collaborating in a productive way. Then this suggests that a restriction for Brews that will work is a mentoring agreement; Brews must be given permission to edit some article on Wikipedia (regardless of the topic).

The articles where he can edit are easily identifiable, because I have rarely faced the kind of opposition Brews is facing, yet I have a similar editing style. I just happen to be better at moving away from articles where my editing efforts would be less welcome. So, if you make me such a mentor of Brews, I doubt ArbCom will ever hear about any problems about him again. Count Iblis (talk) 16:00, 31 May 2012 (UTC)

Thank you for your very interesting comments. Perhaps repeating what you've said above on the clarification request will carry weight with my colleagues but I'm out of the door very shortly and not able to progress it myself I'm afraid.  Roger Davies talk 16:07, 31 May 2012 (UTC)
I've just posted a link from there to here. Count Iblis (talk) 16:17, 31 May 2012 (UTC)

Motions: Speed of light (Brews ohare)

Hi Roger: It appears that you posted the motions available on Motions: Speed of light (Brews ohare). I wonder if you might add to these motions the proposal Motion: To limit Talk-page discussions?

I believe this proposal achieves the goal of limiting my Talk-page activity in a better way than the motion Topic ban that seems to be the favored choice at this point. The reason it is better is that the problem is solved on all Talk pages and it is solved in a very straightforward fashion that involves less work for Admins.

As you may be aware, a topic ban is a difficult matter for the general Admin to enforce because there is inevitably a question of content as to what falls within the ban. In the past claims that a ban on physics-related topics included Pythagoras' theorem, a topic in pure mathematics, led to no end of confusion. Confusion also resulted from citing Roger Penrose as a source for a geometry question on the basis that this author was a physicist. These actions of mine were, of course, not in any way disrupting WP, but led to calls for arbitration engendered out of desire to make a point. The present wording identifying "pages of whatever nature about physics and physics-related mathematics, broadly construed" is not better or clearer than the old wording. It can lead to the same problems.

In contrast, Motion: To limit Talk-page discussions is eminently clear cut and easy to apply. It will satisfy all the concerns of ArbCom, and avoid silly calls for arbitration.

So I appeal to you to add this option to the list of motions available to ArbCom in deciding this issue. Brews ohare (talk) 20:09, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

While I read what you have proposed here with interest, I do not feel sufficiently confident in the outcome to propose it as an alternative. There are always grey areas with topic bans and my take it that it is the responsibility of the topic-banned editor to steer well clear of areas that might prove contentious. Here's a comment from another case, which might prove helpful to you. It's about the Climate change case, but the essential principle holds true.
I'm sure there are no objective criteria that could be laid out without being susceptible to wikilawyering. Instead, I'd suggest a few subjective rules of thumb:
  • By making the edit, are you attempting to say something about climate change or about a person with a notable connection to climate change? If so, avoid making the edit.
  • If you were to ask a disinterested but knowledgeable and reasonable person which topics were closely related to the article you wanted to edit, would there be a strong possibility that they would mention climate change (or global warming, etc.)? If so, avoid making the edit.
  • If a topic-banned opponent in this dispute were to edit the same text you want to edit, would you feel like you'd have a solid basis for accusing them of violating the topic ban? If so, avoid making the edit.
When in doubt, ask someone who will not just tell you what you want to hear -- preferably one of your more reasonable climate change opponents; barring that, a disinterested third party.
Run these rules of thumb past the scenarios offered above and see if there are any that are truly still unclear.
alanyst 18:33, 26 September 2010 (UTC)
I hope this helps,  Roger Davies talk 22:40, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

Save problem

I'm getting time outs when I try to save, especially for large pages. Small edits to sections go through okay unless I've previewed the page first, in which case it times out. This is driving me mad. Ideas anyone?  Roger Davies talk 09:58, 5 June 2012 (UTC)

Would you close a discussion?

I notice you have been in involved date related discussions in the past, but have not contributed to the RfC WT:MOS#Which guideline for citation style? The origin of this discussion was on WT:MOSNUM, where it became apparent that in some cases there is a contradiction between advice for date format in citations between "Citing sources" and "Manual of Style". Since the discussion has gone on for the 30 days which is the default for the RFC bot, and the number of contributions has dwindled, I would appreciate it if you would close the discussion, possibly using the {{archivetop}}/{{archivebottom}} templates described in Wikipedia:Closing discussions. This would preserve the information that an RfC occurred on this topic, which would otherwise be lost when the RFC bot removes the RFC template from the talk page. Jc3s5h (talk) 14:08, 5 June 2012 (UTC)

Sure, I'll look at it tomorrow,  Roger Davies talk 14:56, 5 June 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. Please note the bot removed the RfC template in this edit. Jc3s5h (talk) 15:00, 5 June 2012 (UTC)

Sock of SA / VanishedUser314159

Hi Roger,

could you help me with finding an experienced admin who is familiar with the behavior of this banned user ? I have a strong indication that this user is evading his ban regularly. In my discussion with EdJohnston User_talk:EdJohnston/Archive_26#VanishedUser314159_.2F_SA_socking and Jpgordon User_talk:Jpgordon#User:VanishedUser314159 both declined to perform the block themselves, because they would like a admin who is more familiar with this banned user look into it. Could you help me to find that person ? Thanks --POVbrigand (talk) 08:12, 10 June 2012 (UTC)

If you have some evidence, you could file at SPI and make the request there. If you don't have any evidence, it would probably be a fishing trip I'm afraid.  Roger Davies talk 09:23, 10 June 2012 (UTC)
Thanks :-) maybe I'll take the fishing trip. I don't know if I should spend the effort of filing an SPI (which I have never done before) to "save" wikipedia from misuse by a banned user, or just let it be, let him win. --POVbrigand (talk) 12:11, 10 June 2012 (UTC)

A Prime Example of What Wiki Should be not what it is

Hi. Here's one you started and developed. It seems that Twyford Prep School claim him too, although this association is not in Russell's WP article. I can't imagine that Twyford are not right per Old Twyfordians - Biographies and Twyford Visits Twyford, even though these "proofs" are not exactly independent - what is your view about adding Twyford into Russell ? Here's another interesting (and a reliable NZ government) Russell ref: [4] - oops - I see it's already in the Russell article. Cheers. Acabashi (talk) 00:07, 21 June 2012 (UTC)

  • Twyford was presumably to prepare him for the Harrow entrance exams. No problems at all with me about adding it; it's scarcely controversial and I doubt that Twyford are making it up ;)  Roger Davies talk 06:11, 21 June 2012 (UTC)


Hi. You confirmed that POVbrigand was a legitimate clean start account at [5]. You are aware, I assume that User:Pcarbonn is subject to sanctions per [6], and as such, would not be eligible for a clean start per WP:CLEANSTART - "A clean start is not permitted if there are active bans, blocks or sanctions (including, but not limited to those listed here) in place against the old account." Your confirmation would be appreciated. Thanks! Hipocrite (talk)

Just by way of context, an editor has raised the concern here that POVbrigand (talk · contribs) is, in fact, Pcarbonn (talk · contribs). Hence the question. MastCell Talk 17:37, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
Thanks. POVbrigand is not, as far am I'm aware, User:PCarbonn, and that was not the prior account that POVBrigand disclosed to the Committee.  Roger Davies talk 17:59, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
Should an SPI be launched if there is hints of a connection? IRWolfie- (talk) 19:11, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
The bar is a bit higher than that. It seems to me though that way too energy is going into discussing who this editor is/was instead of focusing on what they are up to now.  Roger Davies talk 19:15, 22 June 2012 (UTC)
Roger, your comments on the current Arbcom case against me are not taken into consideration at the closing. I will be banned for the sole reason that most of the editors have been led to believe that I am a banned user by the banned user SA / Vanisheduser. He is actively swaying the Arbcom case with this accusation, he previously accused me of being Lossisnotmore.
This is Kafkaesque. Is there some way out of this absurd situation ? --POVbrigand (talk) 08:56, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
You've been playing with fire in a contentious topic, so the topic ban is neither unexpected nor unreasonable. The requirement that you declare your prior account less so. It is of course possible that you are in fact Pcarbonn, though having looked into it a bit it seems unlikely.  Roger Davies talk 14:37, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
My edit on FTN was a stupid action, that is clear. I would still like to give it some time and go for an appeal, but that possibility is blocked by the requirement to publicly reveal my old account. The username of my old account has a lot of other internet activity tied to it. It reveals where I live, and with some digging, it reveals who I am - and a lot of people know me by that handle. I therefore fail to see how the requirement is reasonable, I have revealed it already to Arbcom. The requirement also has nothing whatsoever to do with my behaviour, nor with the false allegation that I am a sock puppet.
It was my good will to mention on my userpage that I have an old account, it would not have been against any WP-policy if I had been silent about that fact. I would not have to face this requirement now if I had kept my mouth shut.
For me this requirement effectively means that I can never have the topic ban relieved. So unless I can get advice how an appeal could be possible without publicly revealing my old account,this means the end. I do not think that is in line with WP spirit. --POVbrigand (talk) 15:37, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
I tend to agree with you (and with Roger) that the requirement to publicly reveal your previous/primary account is excessive. And I empathize with your privacy concerns. I accept that you're not Pcarbonn, but at some level your primary account doesn't really matter to me. You've made nearly 2,500 edits with this account, and haven't evidenced any interest in this project beyond using it to promote one side of a single contentious topic.

If you have any interest in the idea of a free, high-quality encyclopedia beyond fighting the cold-fusion battle, then now is your chance to explore the project. If your only interest is in using this project to advance one side of the cold-fusion debate, then I think the topic-ban is clearly the right call. MastCell Talk 16:23, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

Thank you MastCell for acknowledging that my old account doesn't play a role in this and for your belief that I am not a previous banned user. I have already explored the project in three different languages since 2004 and none of that was ever even close to touching a contentious topic. I never had to read through pages of policy to understand why my edits were deleted until I arrived a cold fusion last year. I fully understand that you believe that I am fighting a battle, but there are two sides to that. If you are interested what my motives are, then I will gladly discuss with you and a few others what my view on NPOV is. I am a reasonable person. --POVbrigand (talk) 16:41, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
I believe you're reasonable and well-intentioned. In some ways, it works against you that you can't reveal your primary account, because I think it would be helpful to see non-cold-fusion-related material that you've edited. In any case, whatever your previous outside interests were, now would be a good time to rediscover those or other topics. MastCell Talk 17:07, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

() I think there's an important point to make that Roger might not have thought to mention: the Committee's knowledge of POVbrigand's past identity limits itself to the notification by some editor claiming to be (someone unrelated to PCarbonn) that they would henceforth edit with POVbrigand. We made no verification of that assertion, nor have we investigated whether the original editor was related to or a sock of some other editor that was not specified. This is perfectly normal: the only point of such notification is to proof against future match of identities through checkuser or behavior appearing covert. In no way does it "clear" the new identity, nor does it insulate the new account against past (or future) misbehaviour. It's also has no value in determining whether the old or new accounts might also be related to some specified other accounts. — Coren (talk) 19:27, 25 June 2012 (UTC)

But why should I reveal my old account publicly if I want to appeal the ban, it doesn't make sense. The less than one hundred edits I have made with the old account do not relate at all to my activity as POVbrigand. The motivation of the ban is not clearly stated and it seems to me that I have been banned mainly for having an old account and for the accusation that I am a banned user. If the reason for my ban is the misstep at FTN, than there should not be a requirement to disclose my old account in order to appeal. --POVbrigand (talk) 22:05, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
"I have been banned mainly for having an old account and for the accusation that I am a banned user." No, you have been banned mainly for launching a frivolous WP:POINT exercise in a contentious area, as was made abundantly clear in the [| WP:AE discussion]. I don't agree with the requirement to disclose your old account. In fact I was not entirely convinced of the need for a topic ban rather than a stern warning. But I'm convinced now, because of your inability or refusal to acknowledge the reason for the ban. Short Brigade Harvester Boris (talk) 22:19, 25 June 2012 (UTC)
I know why I was banned and I do not oppose _a_ ban. But, if I look at the AE discussion you will see that a banned user introduced the allegation that I am a sock puppet and several other editors got hooked by that idea. SteveBaker, A13ean, and you Boris jugded my action in light of the previous work I have done and came to a different view. The remarks of user NW in the results section voice the strong believe that I have "past experience", his remarks came before Roger offered the clarifications about my old account. NW's proposal that I reveal my past account were copied in the closing. But my old account has nothing to do with this, I will not reveal it and therefore any possibility for a future ban appeal are blocked. The original proposal of a 3 month topic ban would have been a fair option, the way it is now is not, I cannot even appeal this ban. --POVbrigand (talk) 06:01, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
That is incorrect. Hudn12 introduced the idea, not the banned user. IRWolfie- (talk) 09:20, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
I didn't get a chance to go back to the AE discussion before it was closed, but I'm somewhat surprised that even after Roger's comment, the sanction was enacted as I proposed. I wouldn't consider the appeal restriction necessary anymore. I also wonder whether sanctioning administrators (as opposed to administrators hearing an appeal) even have the power under discretionary sanctions to condition appeals like this. Thinking about it again, I would say that they probably do not. NW (Talk) 23:32, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
That is exactly the thing I am trying to highlight, thanks for noting --POVbrigand (talk) 06:39, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
Replied on User talk:POVbrigand - let's not fill up Roger's talk page with this discussion. SteveBaker (talk) 14:14, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
Actually, I'd rather keep this conversation together, so I've copied over the stuff from POVbrigand's talk page here.  Roger Davies talk 18:08, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
To be honest, the problem was that you were not particularly forthcoming about your old account - which raised suspicions through the roof - then someone speculated as to what that previous account was - and you didn't actually deny it. You should have more clearly and promptly explained:
  1. That you are definitely not Pcarbonn and would be happy to have SPI confirm that. You never did actually deny that connection on the ArbCom enforcement noticeboard...which strongly gave the impression that you are indeed Pcarbonn.
  2. Why you needed a clean-start account. You could have gone into the detail you did in the discussion on Roger Davies' talk page - which would have allayed fears that you switched accounts for more nefarious reasons.
The majority of people who use clean-start are (as the name implies) attempting to be reformed characters following some kind of wiki-punishment. Clean-start does not make guarantees that your original account wouldn't be detectable. This is especially true when you misbehave to a sufficient degree to cause admins to get involved (as you undoubtedly did in this case). Under such circumstances, it is 100% guaranteed that the existence of a prior account will raise monumental concerns amongst the admins. A further concern is that (in general) people are deeply suspicious of single-purpose accounts - mostly because they are very often created by someone who wants to anonymize themselves so that they can edit from a controversial POV despite harboring an unstated conflict of interest. Your choice of user name definitely doesn't help that! This is undoubtedly the root cause of suspicions against you here...Wikipedia is so much a matter of trust and credibility. Using a clean-start, single purpose account with a contentious name - then diving into some of the most contentious material on the website - is without doubt going to raise gigantic red flags about your motives...and that's what happened here.

As to your clean start: IMHO, there is no huge problem with having yourself be directly identifiable with other online accounts. As you know, I have always edited under my own name, with my own email and web site addresses clearly posted on my user page. People can easily figure out my phone number and street address from that - and thus far, that's never been a problem for me. I do get the occasional phone call, text message or personal email from fellow Wikipedians and they are always interesting and worthwhile. I did once get a very weird letter in the mail from a recently banned user - but I was able to laugh and subsequently ignore it. Point being that if you act honestly and fairly, and don't hide WP:COI issues - stay away from topics where you have a personal axe to grind - then why would you want Wikipedians to have less access to your personal data than you grant the whole of the rest of the Internet?

So I don't know.

I think it should be possible to appeal the decision to demand your previous account information in order to leave the way clear for you to subsequently appeal the topic could do that on the grounds that this would be (in a sense) a WP:OUTING of your personal identity. If that appeal succeeded then the way would be open to appeal the topic ban itself. I'd support your right to appeal the demand for previous account info (although I'm not sure I'd grant it) - but I think the actual topic ban is probably justified. Perhaps you'd be better off staying away from Cold Fusion/Fringe topics - you are clearly not dispassionate about them - and if I'm honest, I do suspect that you have a WP:COI that you seek to conceal here (why else would you splatter your personal information all over the Internet - yet seek to conceal it from editors of cold-fusion/fringe topics on Wikipedia).

SteveBaker (talk) 14:09, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
I know so much more today than I did one year ago.

Before I "discovered" cold fusion early 2011 I had never edited any tendentious topic. I didn't know anything about all the policies, the noticeboards, the "tools of the trade", but I knew about the five pillars. I didn't know what to expect, so I thought that creating a new account for the purpose would be a good idea, because my old account name is tied to many internet activities and I didn't want to think about privacy - I simply wanted to have it separated. I made the mistake of picking a silly username for the new account.

Technically speaking I now realize that this is actually not a clean start account, because there was absolutely no problematic behaviour or editing pattern with the old account. This is an alternative account for a tendentious topic due to privacy reasons. However as I do not use and have no intent to use my old account it is more or less indistinguishable from a clean start. If I had ever imagined that this would be such an cause for anxiety I would have not mentioned it.

I think that even if it were revealed many editors would still find reasons to be mistrusting me if they choose so. You see, the old account is so benign that they might argue that it was set up on purpose for an occasion like this. How would I ever defend that accusation, impossible. And bringing this point up here, might by itself cause mistrust that it maybe was my intend to bring it up here, only to .... ad inf.

I am not Pcarbonn, I am not Lossisnotmore and I am not any other banned user. I have only one old account and that one is absolutely harmless. I would be happy to have an SPI confirm that. I had previously offered to "waive" the requirements to perform an SPI on me. Wikipedia:Administrators'_noticeboard/IncidentArchive733#Request_for_Admin_Review_at_talk:cold_fusion (please note that I used quite a bit strong wording back then, I would use different wording today).

I have no real life benefits from cold fusion and I have no ties to anyone who has. There is absolutely no conflict of interest.

I have never cheated in any way, never used sock puppets, never gamed the system.

I am very interested in the topic, more the sociological side of it than the physical side of it. How is it perceived, why is it perceived the way it is. How the whole situation came about. In a way the editing work on the article and this banning episode are part of that sociological side.

"Using a clean-start, single purpose account with a contentious name - then diving into some of the most contentious material on the website - is without doubt going to raise gigantic red flags about your motives...and that's what happened here." - I fully agree to this, but I wasn't aware of that a year ago. I went through a learning curve that is not yet completed.

btw, if you look at my activity the last months you can see that it was already diminishing. After some time I want to be unbanned so I can do some editing again, but I am not in a hurry. In the mean time there isn't very much that I want to contribute to the article space of Wikipedia. --POVbrigand (talk) 17:32, 27 June 2012 (UTC)

(od) A few thoughts, mostly in response to what POVbrigand has called the "Kafkaesque" nature of this business.

  • The disclosure aspect of the WP:AE sanction is probably appealable on the narrow basis that no one should be compelled to out themself. This would leave the indefinite topic ban in place, which could be reconsidered in the fullness of time in the normal way.
  • Now that POVbrigand has been sanctioned, unless the prior account is disclosed, using it in the future is evading scrutiny. The easiest way round that is probably to abandon the prior account altogether.
  • POVbrigand is only topic-banned from cold fusion and editing sensibly in other areas would probably provide the necessary reassurance to (eventually) have the cold fusion topic ban revoked.

Hopefully, that will resolve the main issues so that everyone can move on and focus on other, more important, things.  Roger Davies talk 18:13, 27 June 2012 (UTC)

Note that despite claims to the contrary, recent civil POV pushing on the topic cold fusion by POVbrigand by wearing down all opposition can be demonstrated but I did not do so at enforcement so as to not make the section overly complex to read: I brought an enforcement issue before but there was too much information and too many diffs, and so no admin read it. For example, POVbrigand claims to be interested in the sociological side, but has consistently pushed for mentions that make Cold Fusion look mainstream, for example mentions of NASA and DARPA working on Cold Fusion, despite opposition from a number of editors for a variety of reasons: Talk:Cold_fusion#Poor_sourcing_on_DARPA_wild_goose_chase. Also, considering the disruption that triggered the enforcement was disruption of the fringe noticeboard, I am unsure how would narrowing the focus of the topic ban from fringe science to cold fusion helps? IRWolfie- (talk) 23:39, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
Yeah - I agree. The sanction was for disrupting the fringe noticeboard - and specifically for ignoring the sanctions surrounding fringe articles in general. The topic ban must include that or it's meaningless. SteveBaker (talk) 16:09, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

Erm, crossed wires here. I was using "cold fusion" as shorthand for his existing topic ban rather than suggesting a new narrower focused one. The point is that 6791923 minus the articles covered by the topic ban is still nearly four million other articles to edit.  Roger Davies talk 05:46, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Cheers for the clarification. Should the material on cold fusion be removed from the users page and related cold fusion subpages be deleted considering editing them would be a violation of the topic ban Special:PrefixIndex/User:POVbrigand/? (User:POVbrigand/list looked to me like a BLP violation) IRWolfie- (talk) 10:55, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for signing for me when I forgot to

Thanks NewtonGeek (talk) 13:10, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

Okay,  Roger Davies talk 05:42, 1 July 2012 (UTC)

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NewtonGeek (talk) 04:14, 15 July 2012 (UTC)


Not lobbying, but just as clarification, did you mean to outright support both "Gnangarra admonished" (remedy 5) and "Gnangarra desysopped" (remedy 6), or to indicate a first and second choice? Thanks, Newyorkbrad (talk) 13:50, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Okay, will do. I'm still catching up, I'm afraid, after a couple of hectic days away,  Roger Davies talk 19:25, 17 July 2012 (UTC)

Just for the record...

Not having jumped in on Noetica's desysopping straw poll one way or the other doesn't necessarily mean the "community" agrees with him.--SarekOfVulcan (talk) 12:12, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

Absolutely, though it was always a close call for me to support desysopping in that particular instance.  Roger Davies talk 12:42, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

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NewtonGeek (talk) 13:06, 19 July 2012 (UTC)

Your rationale

I dare say your rationale[7] seems somewhat unconvincing. The case has been amended piece meal for quite a while now, with the last amendment lifting the interaction ban for one former member of the EEML [8]. What do you mean you would like to hear the view of the other party, it was last expressed here. NewyorkBrad mentioned that the other party has been in contact with the committee, are you saying that NewyorkBrad made this up or that you are not privy to arbcom-l mail list? If such correspondence occurred, what has changed? --Nug (talk) 09:41, 22 July 2012 (UTC)

Yes, I did notice that one restriction had been already been lifted and that Russavia said he had no objection on that occasion. We have heard from Russavia recently but are waiting to hear further.  Roger Davies talk 09:50, 22 July 2012 (UTC)
So why did you go ahead and oppose this amendment if you are waiting to hear further, particularly given his earlier agreement at lifting our mutual iBan here? --Nug (talk) 09:56, 22 July 2012 (UTC)
Because things from Russavia's perspective may have changed since and because I can always change my vote or propose an omnibus motion later once I have the information I seek.  Roger Davies talk 10:04, 22 July 2012 (UTC)
So what in this correspondence moves you to oppose this motion given the earlier agreement in the prior request? And what further information do you seek that would compel you to change your mind? I'm curious as to why the earlier motion concerning Miacek would gain unanimous 11-0 approval, yet this seems somewhat controversial amongst your cohorts. Perhaps you can enlighten me? --Nug (talk) 10:18, 22 July 2012 (UTC)
I'd rather not go into detail just now but I am not seeing any particularly pressing reason to lift this immediately. Don't worry; it will be resolved one way or the other within a few days. I ask you to be patient in the interim.  Roger Davies talk 10:27, 22 July 2012 (UTC)

[9] Ncmvocalist (talk) 15:40, 2 August 2012 (UTC)

Request for amendment

I have left a response on the page on which I would like you to comment.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 19:04, 3 August 2012 (UTC)

Topic Ban violation

Note that POVbrigand has started to edit Cold Fusion articles again despite his topic ban: [10]. IRWolfie- (talk) 12:27, 5 August 2012 (UTC)

I should note, I would ask them not to myself post in the topic they are topic banned from, but I think a message from an arb not to do it would be better received. IRWolfie- (talk) 12:45, 5 August 2012 (UTC)
"has started to edit Cold Fusion articles again" is misrepresenting the situation. I found a source that was actively requested in an edit comment [11] and I provided that source. So, technically I have edited an article that is under topic ban, and this can be seen as an violation. I believe that offering a requested source is at most benign. Nevertheless I will not do it again, it causes too much annoyance for everybody. --POVbrigand (talk) 15:21, 8 August 2012 (UTC)
  • Note that another editor has taken this refusal to abide by the topic ban to arbitration enforcement. IRWolfie- (talk) 16:39, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

Deleting User Pages for indefinite topic banned users

There is currently a discussion [12] to delete one of my user pages. Some users even go as far as to propose to simply delete all my user pages.

Since my topic ban I have not edited any of those pages !

Could you kindly clarify whether a indefinite topic ban is a reason to delete user pages ?

Oh, I guess the action will take place when I am blocked in the next few days and I will be unable to raise my voice. --POVbrigand (talk) 15:47, 8 August 2012 (UTC)

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Backtable Speak to meconcerning my deeds. 06:40, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

I'm looking at it now, thanks,  Roger Davies talk 06:44, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

Amendment request

I have repeatedly raised concerns at the request for amendment regarding your position on this matter of WP:BAN as it pertains to my request and not gotten a response. Your comments on the amendment case and suggested motion show a marked contrast with your expressed position on the review case. During that case you seemed to echo the very concerns I have raised in this amendment request regarding Mathsci's removal of comments by banned editors from user talk pages, making arguments identical to those I have raised at the current case. On the other hand, during this case you have repeatedly suggested that any edit by this banned editor, no matter how harmless, is indistinguishable from the campaign of harassment and that Math has done nothing worthy of concern in reverting those edits. Would you mind explaining here or at the amendment request page, what accounts for this apparent inconsistency?--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 07:06, 10 September 2012 (UTC)

What response do you want over and above what I have posted on the case psge? With this editor (and indeed with a great many other banned editors), it is not particularly easy separating what is genuinely innocent and what is part of their larger agenda. What's more, even the very act of posting may be the banned editor's triumphalist way of giving his victims the one finger salute. There is no reason whatsoever to assume good faith of this banned editor.  Roger Davies talk 04:28, 11 September 2012 (UTC)
This is the first time you have even responded to me and you have still managed to avoid responding to the actual point. How do you reconcile your comments at the amendment request taking a hardline stance supporting Mathsci's removal of Echigo Mole's comments from user talk pages, with your prior comment on the review case strongly criticizing Mathsci for removing Echigo Mole's comments from user talk pages? You seem to have taken two positions that stand starkly at odds with each other. What I want is for you to account for that apparent contradiction. It is directly relevant to my concerns about this restriction against Trev and Sight being ripe for gaming and your dismissal of that argument.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 04:54, 11 September 2012 (UTC)
What is there to reconcile? I personally think he'd be better off spending his time doing other things but he has the absolute right within policy to revert. I not persuaded by your argument that he is only doing this to wind Trevelyan and SightWatcher up. There's way more to it than that.  Roger Davies talk 05:06, 11 September 2012 (UTC)
Except you did not merely express a personal position that he should not do it. You stated unequivocally at the review case that Mathsci removing comments by Echigo mole from the talk pages of sanctioned R&I editors, after they asked him to stop, was battleground behavior and that would make it a violation of policy. Now you are saying it is not a violation of policy. Those positions are obviously not consistent.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 06:09, 11 September 2012 (UTC)
Diff?  Roger Davies talk 06:20, 11 September 2012 (UTC)
I just saw that I had only included the initial comment. Right after the diff above you added the comment about battleground behavior.--The Devil's Advocate (talk) 15:53, 11 September 2012 (UTC)
I thought you might be referring to that. I have since reconsidered. The primary factor was EM's use of a home address as a user name. This is outing, which ups the ante considerably, and that trumps by a large measure any minor misconduct. Another factor is that the sockmaster has subsequently been formally site-banned, which changes the position considerably with regard to reverting his edits. In any event, I'm not infallible.  Roger Davies talk 21:14, 12 September 2012 (UTC)

Research essay

Greetings Mr. Davies,

I am currently preparing a research essay for an English course and would find knowledge of your ethnicity and race to be most helpful. If you are not offended by this request for information, feel inclined to assist, and have just a moment to reply with the information I would be grateful. Thank you, Melissa Melissaeffie (talk) 18:40, 18 September 2012 (UTC)


hey hello!

I would like for you to revoke POVbrigand's topic ban. I'm assuming you gave it to him? Is that correct?

I consider him pleasant to work with. He doesn't have a single mainspace edit that can be considered bad and he never bothered anyone. This can not be said about the user complaining about him. It is easy to demonstrate they have been bothering him for a long time but this is not necessary in this context.

He did nothing wrong so he doesn't need to be restricted in his editing.

That should be enough.

You being such a nice guy and all that ^_^

If you really want me to elaborate on RW stalking POVbrigand I can.

Just ask, (talk) 03:47, 16 October 2012 (UTC)

I'm reviewing BLPs with "multiple issues" tags. I came across this, and it didn't look terribly notable, so I prodded it. Then I realised it was your creation. I've removed the prod (since I guess you think he's notable and I you know your field). But I'm wondering whether you might review the article anyway.--Scott Mac 01:49, 17 November 2012 (UTC)

Hi Scott: Thanks for the note. The conundrum here I suppose is that Oram is highly notable in a highly specialist field (broadly racial/social profiling/stereotyping as a means of selecting candidates for exemplary military execution during the First World War). He conducted breakthrough research on the subject. However, there is a paucity of independent reliable sources. I have just looked for new material but there's nothing fresh, so the article is pretty much as good as it's going to get for now. If you decide it's PROD-able that's fine by me. If you don't, I'll probably clean it up and tidy it a bit but there's not a great deal more that can be down with it. Best,  Roger Davies talk 11:45, 18 November 2012 (UTC)
I'm happy to leave it with you. I trust your judgement here more than my ignorance of the topic.--Scott Mac 13:38, 18 November 2012 (UTC)

Page review request

Hello. Please can you perform a B class review of the article Fort Bowyer under the scope of the Fortifications task force, as it has expanded since the first review. The person who performed the initial review has been offline for a long time. Kind regards Keith H99 (talk) 19:54, 22 November 2012 (UTC)

Yes, no problems. It'll be Sunday now though before I get to it. Just looking at it quickly, it has whole sections as well as paragraphs which are completely unreferenced. You may want to look at those as the elusive refs would normally be enough to fail it for B-class.  Roger Davies talk 18:42, 23 November 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for the advance warning, Roger. I have done some tidying up today. Regards. Keith H99 (talk) 17:43, 25 November 2012 (UTC)

Dispute resolution volunteer survey

Dispute Resolution – Volunteer Survey Invite

Hello Roger Davies. To follow up on the first survey in April, I am conducting a second survey to learn more about dispute resolution volunteers - their motivations for resolving disputes, the experiences they've had, and their ideas for the future. I would appreciate your thoughts. I hope that with the results of this survey, we will learn how to increase the amount of active, engaged volunteers, and further improve dispute resolution processes. The survey takes around five to ten minutes, and the information you provide will not be shared with third parties other than to assist in analyzing the results of the survey. No personally identifiable information will be released.

Please click HERE to participate.
Many thanks in advance for your comments and thoughts.

You are receiving this invitation because you have either listed yourself as a volunteer at a dispute resolution forum, or are a member of a dispute resolution committee. For more information, please see the page that describes my fellowship work which can be found here. Szhang (WMF) (talk) 02:46, 29 November 2012 (UTC)

Petition to un-topic ban AndroidCat

It's been several years since the Arbcom decision on Scientology. Several amendments have been made to the original decision, including un-topic banning several users who were parties to that arbitration. After reading all the proceedings, as a completely uninvolved editor, I think that the person who was most slighted was User:AndroidCat. He has obviously made good-faith edits throughout his time on Wikipedia, and had been a positive contributor to all Scientology articles, cleaning vandalism from both pro-Scientology and anti-Scientology editors. He obviously shows interest in going back to the topic. I thus believe that a petition should be made to un-topic ban this helpful editor. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:00, 8 December 2012 (UTC)

Merry Christmas!

Hello Roger Davies! Wishing you a very Happy Merry Christmas :) TheGeneralUser (talk) 13:28, 25 December 2012 (UTC)

Thank you! Your good wishes are heartily reciprocated,  Roger Davies talk 12:14, 27 December 2012 (UTC)

Happy holidays

That's a very fun recording from Leon Redbone and Zooey Deschanel ;) Thanks!  Roger Davies talk 12:16, 27 December 2012 (UTC)