Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Macedonia 2

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Case Opened on 03:06, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Case Closed on 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Case Amended (by motion) on 16:40, 19 June 2011 (UTC)

Case amended by motion on 14:30, 17 June 2018 (UTC)

Watchlist all case pages: 1, 2, 3, 4

Please do not edit this page directly unless you are either 1) an Arbitrator, 2) an Arbitration Clerk, or 3) adding yourself to this case. Statements on this page are original comments provided when the Committee was initially requested to Arbitrate this page (at Requests for arbitration), and serve as opening statements; as such, they should not be altered. Any evidence you wish to provide to the Arbitrators should go on the /Evidence subpage.

Arbitrators, the parties, and other editors may suggest proposed principles, findings, and remedies at /Workshop. That page may also be used for general comments on the evidence. Arbitrators will then vote on a final decision in the case at /Proposed decision.

Once the case is closed, editors may add to the #Log of blocks, bans, and restrictions as needed, but this page should not be edited otherwise. Please raise any questions at Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration#Requests for clarification, and report violations of remedies at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/Arbitration enforcement.

Involved parties[edit]

Requests for comment[edit]

Statement by Yannismarou[edit]

I'll be as brief as I can. After an extensive edit-war, a straw poll on the application of the name "Republic of Macedonia" on the article Greece took place but it bore no fruit. No adm closed the poll; the article was protected twice by User:Horologium to avoid ongoing edit-wars, and no solution to the problem was found. After endless discussions, it was consensually agreed that the case should be presented on 22 April before the ArbCom for the reasons exposed in the above thread. It was not conclusively decided who will file the request.

Pending the filing of the case, User:ChrisO moved the article Republic of Macedonia to Macedonia. The issue was brought to AN by User:John Carter, and then a "centralized discussion" started in the Talk:Macedonia page. Unfortunately, this discussion bore no fruit, and edit wars ensued.

I regard the issue of major importance. It is not only the legitimacy of User:ChrisO's move and its adherence to our policies which is judged here, but also the avoidance of further and collateral damage this action may entail. I thus decided to bring the case in front of you now, although not all the proper series of "dispution mechanism resolution" actions has been followed. I do think, however, that this case falls under the categories "Sensitive or "drama prone" issues requiring advice on handling" as well as "Unusually divisive disputes among administrators".

My filing concerns mainly the User:ChrisO's move, but it is the ArbCom itself which will determine the scope of its competence, and if and how it is going to examine the related issue of the "Greece" article. Although I try to present the case as neutrally as I can, I cannot hide that I am an involved party, and that I have commented on ChrisO's actions here. I apologize for acting in the way I act before the 22 April, when the Greece article issue was planned to be brought here, but I strongly believe that any delay to bring User:ChrisO's move to your attention would entail irreversible damage to the project (collateral edit-warring already ensued, the title's name may affect many articles where uncontrolled edit-wars most probably will erupt, and a controversial adm action of major importance for many articles cannot remain "on the air" for so many days). Thank you.--Yannismarou (talk) 03:00, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Response to Coren: The link here answers to your question. Yes, one administrator's action precipitated this early filing. Yes, the consensus was to bring the naming issue to ArbCom the earliest on 22 April because of the Orthodox Easter. There seemed to be a consensus the filing to be made by a non-involved user (maybe User:Horologium, the protecting administrator), but this was not conclusively decided.--Yannismarou (talk) 03:42, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Response to FloNight, bainer (arbitrators), Fut (involved party) and others: I see here that there is a question about what we ask from the arbitrators. As I see things, there are two issues: 1) ChrisO's move which precipitated the filing, and 2) the underlying issue (naming dispute). I believe that both should be dealt by the Committee. As far as (1) is concerned, LessHeard vanU's perspective is interesting (but needs some development and clarifications). As far as (2) is concerned, I've exposed how I personally regard ArbCom's extent of competence here. I am not sure if my interpretation keeps pace with how ARBCOM itself regards its competence, but I personally tend to see it in the broadest possible sense, because it is a matter of policy application everywhere. If the Committee decides to deal with the naming dispute issue, then it should issue concrete guidelines about how the country should be referred not only in the "Greece" article but throughout the project. Eventually, these guidelines will decide the naming dispute itself. So, directly or indirectly, the ARBCOM will have to deal with the heart of the problem: the naming dispute (and I agree on that with Sept). At least, this is what I believe.--Yannismarou (talk) 01:03, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by ChrisO[edit]

The Macedonia naming issue is one of the oldest and ugliest POV disputes on Wikipedia. It has been ongoing since as far back as 2002, when the Macedonia article was first created. The dispute centres on the name of the country Macedonia, which shares its name with a Greek region and a wider historical region. The Greek and Macedonian governments have been involved in a fairly bitter diplomatic dispute over the issue for the last 17 years, which has spilled over onto Wikipedia. Years of discussions between Wikipedians over what name to use for the country have been largely fruitless, with some Greek editors insisting on adopting the Greek government's preferred terminology across Wikipedia or just within a "walled garden" of Greece-related articles. POV vandalism and disruption in support of the Greek position across the whole of Wikipedia is endemic on this issue, as an abuse log shows. Any article that mentions Macedonia is a target for disruptive editing, which generally involves replacing the term "Republic of Macedonia" with "FYROM" or made-up terms like "Vardarska". This has even extended to anonymous vandalism from the Greek Parliament on an article that appeared on the Main Page recently. [1]

The situation outside Wikipedia regarding the country's name is straightforward - it's called simply "Macedonia" by the great majority of English-language reference works and media. Wikipedia's policy is also clear about how terminology should be used. (See Talk:Macedonia#Article move for a summary.) Unfortunately any movement towards a solution that reflects external sources has been blocked by Greek editors, essentially for POV reasons. Policy has been and is still being ignored - all of the editors who have objected to the article's new name have so far refused to discuss the policy rationale for the move. It is clear that attempts to reach a consensus have failed and are unlikely to succeed without external stimulus. I undertook a WP:BOLD editorial action to cut the Gordian Knot by moving the article to a name that matches policy and real-world usage. What we need now is to obtain a definitive, binding ruling on the policy dispute and preferably to tackle some of the disruptive behaviour - POV-pushing, wikilawyering, vandalism - that is occurring daily across Wikipedia on this issue. The issue is far wider than just the article move; there will be no resolution of this matter without addressing the underlying policy problems. Note that this doesn't imply solving the naming issue itself - ultimately this dispute comes down to whether policies should in fact be followed (the answer to which should be obvious but is being clouded by wikilawyering and a simple refusal to discuss policy requirements). -- ChrisO (talk) 07:03, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

(add) I should add that this issue is rather different from the other naming disputes that the Committee has looked at - Samaria and Ireland. Samaria appears to be a much more complex issue and the arbitration case is a hopeless mess, frankly. In Ireland, the Committee remanded the issue to the community for further discussion. This stage has already happened for Macedonia - a lengthy attempt to reach agreement failed some time ago (see WP:MOSMAC, now defunct). The consensus-seeking mechanism has been tried repeatedly but as others have already noted, it has been stymied by an intransigent ethnic-nationalist block of editors. I should also add that a couple of Yannis's claims are misleading - there has been no "collateral edit-warring", merely an unrelated dispute over content in the ancient history section of the article, and I have already stated that I will voluntarily reverse the article move if its policy rationale is found to be faulty. -- ChrisO (talk) 07:31, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Response to Carcharoth. I would have no problems with a delay until the originally planned date of 22nd April. -- ChrisO (talk) 07:31, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Man with one red shoe[edit]

First of all I'm confused by this filling. this is not the issue that was supposed to be brought to ArbCom, it's only a tangential issue. Second, it was clearly agreed by all the parties to wait till the end of this weekend for practical reasons. Third, I was named a party in this discussion, but I don't even watch the Republic of Macedonia page, and I don't even have yet a formed opinion over moving it to Macedonia. Thus, this case filling has to me a distinct feeling of either scoring points against the opposite party or panic that the real case will be submitted soon and thus this was an attempt to preempt it from being filled (BTW, it was agreed that the case will be filled by a neutral party, this doesn't seem the case here either). Sorry for the meta-comment, but these things had to be mentioned.

I will only comment on what the initial issue was supposed to be: I don't see the issue in Greece page (see talk:Greece) as a simple content problem, I see it as a matter of principle, whether Wikipedia allows a group of people to "own" their national page and keep them as walled gardens and enforce their national POV there. If it's not evident to you that's the case here, please examine the use of the name of "Republic of Macedonia" or "Macedonia" in the majority (or maybe even "all") of the other articles and even in foreign language Wikis. I also made the case that biased polls serve no use (for example it serves no use to ask Palestinians about Israel's right of existence or to ask Chinese about Tibet independence and so on, there are many national POVs out there) While assuming good faith in Wikipedia is a good policy, assuming that national editors will excuse themselves automatically from debates where their POV would influence the result is ludicrous and will only encourage same national(ist) editors to watch over "their" national pages like eagles (again I don't accuse anybody of bad faith, the problem here is POV, national POV at that) I only hope that we can find some way of removing or reducing this kind of POV and have a procedure for deciding this kind of sensible national items, maybe in case of doubt by enforcing the standard used in the rest of the articles or having a more balanced straw-poll that involves more 3rd party nationals, that's all. Now, people will complain about national profiling, I think I made a clear case why the national POV can be a problem in Wikipedia, I don't ask for excluding people based on their nationality, I ask for bringing more 3rd party people or using solutions from other articles, or finding different ways to decide content in the case there's suspicion that national POV plays an important role in the debate as it is pretty clear from the simple common sense analysis of the issue. If you can't make this kind of sweeping decision maybe you should decide in this specific naming matter and put it to sleep in a merciful manner, cause otherwise the edit wars and debates will continue endlessly. man with one red shoe 05:04, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Fut.Perf. (Future Perfect at Sunrise)[edit]

I request that Arbcom accept this case under the perspective previously agreed by all participants of the sub-dispute that had arisen at Talk:Greece. To Coren: No this is not a request for the committee to settle the naming dispute (i.e. the content issue) itself. It's a request for guidance in a more general matter of Wikipedia governance: how to deal with content decisions where a dispute is overwhelmingly dominated by pre-existing real-world political positions polarised along national lines. This is a situation where the standard Wiki model of consensus procedures regularly fails, and we need to figure out how to deal with that. Regarding the Greece article, we clearly found that this dispute was between a single, deeply entrenched and extremely determined, national faction of Greek editors, against a consensus of everybody else. However, the Greek faction is strong enough to block all regular consensus mechanisms threatening their POV island: by gaining at least "no consensus" status in any vote-like procedure through sheer strength of numbers, and by derailing any discussion-based procedure through sheer tenacity of filibustering, until neutral editors are bored away. We need to figure out how to deal with polls dominated by national factions, and we need to figure out where the line is to be drawn between healthy debate and disruptive WP:IDIDNTHEARTHAT filibustering with people advocating nationally-based POVs.

ChrisO's move is just an expression of exasperation with this situation: he tried to cut the gordian knot, by doing the correct edit in a situation where he knew normal procedure would simply never lead anywhere. Arbcom needs to deal not so much with the legalities of this move itself, but with the underlying causes: why do we regularly have situations that make such rouge moves look like the only way out? Fut.Perf. 06:04, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

P.S.: For what it's worth, my views on the content issue are expressed here. Fut.Perf. 11:55, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Heimstern[edit]

Looking just at ChrisO's action, a single administrative action, isn't going to make much of a case. What really needs examining here is a complete failure in the wiki model to get us through a problem (here I am talking about the dispute at Talk:Greece, not the move at the other article, where I've had no involvement). Attempting to follow traditional methods of dispute resolution has led to roadblock because of a sizable nationalist faction that insists on using a name not used elsewhere in Wikipedia. Where two separate consensuses, one consisting almost entirely of people with a vested interest in a certain nationality, the other consisting of more or less everyone without any vested interest in that country, something is broken. The Wikipedia community needs better tools to deal with nationalistic editing if we are to have any hope of truly being a neutral encyclopedia in cases like this. I ask ArbCom to help us with this. At least, point us in the direction we should go next (and please, don't ask us to go to mediation or RFC. This issue has been discussed out, and certain parties absolutely will not listen.) Heimstern Läufer (talk) 07:02, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

PS: If this case is supposed to include everyone with involvement in the naming dispute, I suppose I should be added, though having that many parties sounds exceedingly unwieldy to me.

Since it seems clear to to me that this case is going to happen, I'm really hoping the Arbs will listen to this: treating this like any ordinary case is not going to produce good results. The traditional methods of counting reverts, uncivil remarks and questionable admin actions is not going produce any answer that meaningfully solves the real problem here; namely, that this article is under siege from a group of nationalists for whom no way save that endorsed by Greek foreign policy is acceptable. We need something new. More of the same will at best leave us where we are now, and at worst may bolster the nationalists. Heimstern Läufer (talk) 15:02, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by PMK1[edit]

Personally I was hoping that this whole issue could wait until the Orthodox Easter, which begins this weekend. As a sort of respect to users from both "sides". But in further reading the comments by Yannismarou and ChrisO, both have vigourously defended their actions. It is true that a walled garden has been established by many users, all from a similar POV and ethnic background, whereby the term "Macedonia" has been claimed as an exclusively Greek one, despite the prevalent opinion in the English-speaking world. Macedonia, without any appelations, is the self-identifying term for the country officially known as the Republic of Macedonia. ChrisO's actions are justified as they follow suit behind the practises featured in the English version of Wikipedia. The addition of "Republic of" was used to disambiguate it from other Macedonias, however usage of the full name of a country is not common wiki practise. Although officially "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland", the article is United Kingdom. There are dozens of similar examples, "United States of America" => United States, "Commonwealth of Australia" => Australia, "United Mexican States" => Mexico. In this case the term "Macedonia" has been appropriately chosen, acting in line with other developments on Wikipedia and accordance with WP:NAME. PMK1 (talk) 08:10, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Jack forbes[edit]

I originally came across the naming dispute on talk Greece where I disagreed with listing editors nationalities taking part in a straw poll. I have no allegiances to either country, so no matter what decision is made I won't lose any sleep over it. I took some interest in the name change made by Chris0 to the Macedonia article as many of the same editors where involved. My concern is the way he went about it without any prior notice and his comments since making the change. I saw his statement here that any admin reverting his change could be desysopped for wheel-warring. I later noticed him making this change to his opening statement implying it was not an administrative action which he confirmed here after I asked him just that. He did though reassert it could be wheel-warring in a conversation on J.delanoy's talk page [2]. The question for me is, did he use his tools in the proper manner and after using those tools was he right to infer that it would be wheel-warring and possibly frighten off other admins from reverting his preferred version. Jack forbes (talk) 09:44, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by GK1973[edit]

This issue has many dimensions and should all be dealt with by the ArbCom.

1. Whether ChrisO abused his position as an administrator to disturb the consensus achieved in Wikipedia.

I wholly support that his actions were a direct breach of 4 out of the 5 pillars which form (or have formed until now) the only firm rules of Wikipedia. He intentionally changed the status quo of an article which had been stable for years and was not disputed by any side in this conflict. He did this in a most provocative way, deprived of the editors the right to revert/modify his edits and directly threatened other admins not to do so either. He clearly acted in bad faith, choosing the start of a holy day for the Greeks to act and he totally disrupted Wikipedia to illustrate a point, whatever this might be.

2. Whether his edits should be reverted

I firmly support that his edits should be reverted at least until the ArbCom reaches a decision. His goal was to create a status quo which would manipulate the opinions of those not directly interested in this matter and it seems he has succeeded, since editors already talk about "not changing things yet", thus accepting that his edits will be the start of any new "negotiation". The former, stable for so many years, status of the article was accepted by all parties and created no problems. The constitutional name of the country was used, respecting the self identification of the ethnic Macedonians and a disambiguation table was introduced respecting the Greek claims. This formula worked for so many years with minimal protest, so the situation had miraculously been resolved in a way only possible in Wikipedia.

3. How the name issue of the existing "Macedonias" should be treated from now on.

This problem exists and is in no way unique in Wikipedia. The ArbCom should make its recommendations and I will assist in every step. The only question is how we can expect respect for this decision when there have already been such recommendations and these tend to be disrespected by all sides and ChirsO. What will the difference be from the last dictates of WP:ARBMAC, which was clearly not respected by ChrisO when he disrupted the article. Should the ArbCom deem this time that stricter guidelines are necessary, I will stand by it, although I understand that such a decision is difficult to take because of the possibility that it will clash with the pillars of Wikipedia.

Finally, the ArbCom and all editors assisting in this process should keep in mind that although the name problem exists and is a serious issue for both sides, this was not the case in the specific article in question, whose title, name, position and general status quo had been accepted by all sides. GK1973 (talk) 14:03, 19 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Taivo[edit]

How ironic. The Gordian Knot was a tangled Greek mess solved by a Macedonian who bent, if not broke, the rules. (And of course I realize that Alexander was not a Slavic Macedonian, but it's still a beautiful irony, nonetheless.)

There are several layers to the issue before us here. First, there is the real-world conflict over a single word--started by Greece so long ago that it almost seems to date from Alexander's day. This issue is totally irrelevant to Wikipedia's policies, but it is mentioned time and time again as motivation for the uncompromising stand of the nationalist editors as here, here, here, and (my personal favorite) here illustrate. They self-identify themselves as Greek (as here and here), but then complain loudly when others identify them as Greek (as at Talk:Greece passim). Second, there is the continual attempt by the entrenched nationalists to paint international usage as the standard for Wikipedia naming (as here). This issue is also totally irrelevant to Wikipedia's policies, but is repeatedly used to sidetrack the issue of common English usage as found throughout Talk:Greece. Third, there is the Greek vandalism that occurs nearly daily throughout Wikipedia against Macedonia. The abuse log is cited elsewhere here, but I have personally been watching Staffordshire University and was forced to revert this on four occasions before getting the article protected from anonymous IPs. Staffordshire University is not even within the Greek "sphere of interest", but it was cited (along with other irrelevant articles such as 2007 Fort Dix attack plot) by Avg as a reason for reporting Future Perfect to "the authorities" when he changed "former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" to "Republic of Macedonia". This is a serious problem and further illustrates the nationalistic fervor of this community when anyone tries to treat Macedonia as an equal entity within Wikipedia. But none of these issues is relevant to the discussion at hand.

Finally, we come to the real issue of this arbitration–how does Wikipedia deal with a parochial group of editors (whether nationalistic, as in this case, or religious) that blocks all attempts at productive editing that violates some self-proclaimed interest? In this case, we have a group of editors who refuse to reach any consensus on following Wikipedia policy using consistent wikilawyering, WP:JUSTDONTLIKEIT, WP:IDIDNTHEARTHAT, and other diversionary tactics without addressing the fundamental policy issue. Wikipedia's policy is very clear to me concerning naming an entity (WP:NCON)–1) Use the most common English name, and if that isn't available for some reason, 2) Use a self-identification. The policy specifically excludes political, moral, and legal arguments in deciding on a name, but the Greek editors continually cite 1) the political views of Macedonia and Greece, 2) the moral rights of Greece, and 3) the legal name imposed by international organizations as reasons for ignoring Wikipedia naming policy. Consensus is impossible when you are talking to a wall. It is my sincere hope that this arbitration will result in a clear and unambiguous interpretation of Wikipedia naming policy. (Taivo (talk) 13:00, 17 April 2009 (UTC))Reply[reply]

Statement by John Carter[edit]

I first came to this discussion after Future Perfect at Sunrise requested additional eyes and voices in the discussion on the Talk:Greece page regarding how the Republic of Macedonia was to be named in that article. At the time, the two choices being considered were "Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" and "Republic of Macedonia". I and other new arrivals seemed to consistently favor the latter, but to the best of my knowledge and memory the simple name "Macedonia" was never really even spoken about, except to dismiss the article being named that out of hand. Although there were heated voices on both sides, and I am ashamed to admit that I was one of them at times, there did seem to be some real discussion taking place, and there were hopes, at least on my part, that a real solution could be arrived at.

Then, out of the blue, without any discussion, ChrisO moves the page, locks it in place himself, and says that he is doing this in the interests of following policy, and is forced to justify how his move is in compliance with policy. I and several others called into question the move, and there were several comments from various parties indicating that it might be an attempt to basically game the system and take advantage of the fact that many or most of the editors from the Greek side would be celebrating the Orthodox Easter before they noticed the change had been made, thus in effect making it a stable page for several days before the Greek editors returned and noticed the move. Several editors have very clearly stated that these actions of ChrisO's undermine their trust in the fairness and effectiveness of the wikipedia.

I beg the ArbCom to accept this case. The article in question was one of the top 300 in hits for March, and it is thus one of our most important articles. Such radical moves as have taken place on such an important article are at best questionable. That they take place under a cloud such as the one cast by ChrisO's actions damages the trust of several experienced editors, and even more so newer editors, and we should all do our best to address ensuring that such damaging behavior not happen any more often than necessary. John Carter (talk) 13:13, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Addition to statement[edit]

It is I believe clear to everybody that there are two distinct, related, things being considered here. They are ChrisO's behavior and the broader naming question. It seems to me as a comparative outsider to the ongoing dispute who has only recently become involved in it, that the former issue may be easier to resolve than the latter. If I am correct in that opinion, and if ArbCom rules allow it, I would request that, if a decision regarding the former issue is resolved before the second issue, any implementation of a decision regarding the former issue not be delayed until the resolution of the second issue, but be carried out as soon as a clear decision is reached. John Carter (talk) 15:54, 19 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Also, I call to the attention of the arbitration committee this material questioning the terms of Future Perfect's proposed renaming here. In it, I mentioned that Future Perfect agreed extremely quickly with the rather sudden renaming of the article, within 45 minutes as the records will show, and requested additional information to help eliminate the possibility that he might be acting on a potential POV and COI. The conversation continued until I was called by Future Perfect "idiotic". When I called that into question, this was his response. John Carter (talk) 23:51, 19 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Avg[edit]

I would like to start by expressing my firm belief that this action by ChrisO was not simply a random "bold" move nor a move by a passing-by, uninvolved administrator. It was a carefully planned and premeditated move, by a heavily biased editor, with the objective of acting as a fait accompli. It is also the culmination of a serial disregard of any sense of the consensus process and it has been accompanied by a host of accusations, insults and threats against an ethnic group of editors. It was not the first time he abused the admin tools to settle this dispute in his favour. And finally, it was based in deceit and in an outright lie to the community. I'm prepared to prove my claims with diffs when the arbitration enters the evidence phase. ChrisO has completely lost my trust.

I would also like to draw the attention of the ArbCom to the somewhat established tactics even in the statements of certain involved parties here, in labelling a group of editors as "Greek nationalists". The issue of ethnic profiling is something that I feel ArbCom should address. Mud is a difficult thing to remove when someone throws it at you. I would ask ArbCom to protect me and anyone else insulted from the continuous abuse and ridicule we get, just because we happen to have a certain opinion, which has always been based on policy and which we have never tried to impose to anyone. I would challenge anyone to find any of the "Greek nationalists" reverting any article where "Republic of Macedonia" was the established naming. On the contrary, the other side (which mainly comprises of two users who enjoy immunity, ChrisO and Future Perfect at Sunrise) has engaged in extensive edit wars, mass renames and intimidation tactics in order to push their POV and reverse the status quo. Again, diffs will be provided in detail.

Regarding the content dispute, never, ever has "Macedonia" been discussed as a choice for naming the country, because it was common ground to everybody even remotely involved with the issue that there is a high degree of ambiguity. Again, I will present as evidence many diffs where even ChrisO himself strongly advocates that Macedonia should not be used as the name of the country. I will also present my arguments on the naming issue (of course I disagree with the current naming) if the content dispute is discussed, however I very strongly believe the behavioral issue has to be tackled first. I find appalling to be forced to enter into a content dispute with the tables turned to ChrisO favor, just because he abused the admin tools.

Request: I specifically request User:ChrisO to revert back to the status quo ante (stable for the last 7 years) before the arbitration starts on the 22nd of April. He will then prove to the arbitrators and to the community that his action was not intended to promote a certain POV and trick the arbitrators into upholding the newly changed name.

Statement by Húsönd[edit]

I reiterate my brief comment on Talk:Macedonia: the timing of the move by ChrisO was inadequate. Furthermore, being ChrisO clearly involved in this dispute, he should have refrained from an unilateral move that was guaranteed to produce a very heated outcry. That said, I fully understand the frustration that led to such reaction. The naming issue of the Republic of Macedonia and its application on Wikipedia has been a long-lasting dispute, as the Greek POV is fiercely defended by a large group of Greek users that effectively block any consensus from ever occurring. The recent straw poll clearly demonstrated this. Yet, outside attention was only drawn when the straw poll issue was brought to ANI by Greek users, irked by my rather visual analysis (now deleted) of the ethnicity of the straw poll participants. Consensus was easily formed at ANI that Greek users had their own walled garden and were creating an obstacle to Wikipedia's natural consensus building process. Despite overall agreement, the poll ended, no admin ever closed it, no decision was ever made, and the heated discussion unsurprisingly died out. It is very frustrating to see core values of Wikipedia be manipulated by one ethnic group, but even more frustrating to see everybody (expect that ethic group) acknowledge the manipulation and still do nothing about it. On top of that, those who point the obvious fact that the problem lies with one ethnic group still have to bear with the usual accusations of racism and censorship. And then they become "involved" and can take no unilateral actions such as... move an article. Thus, although I do not approve ChrisO's rush, I think that his action attempts to bring rightful attention to a problem that should earn far more disapproval. I am glad that this is finally back at the Arbcom and I do expect that at last we may have some results, and some peace. Húsönd 21:44, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Jim62sch[edit]

I'm innocent I tells ya, I wuz framed. Seriously, I've noted elsewhere that I thought the move was a bad idea, both in its timing and in its intent: I understand why Chris did what he did, but I see no consensus for the move. Yes, as a potential political tactic it was smart in the sense that a move to the center takes us back to Republic of Macedonia, but in this case it wasn't necessarily the best idea. The real issue is precisely what User:John Carter and User:Taivo have explained. To be more blunt: should the Greece article be a walled garden, one that can ignore the realities and policies and logic? I say "no". Period and EOS. •Jim62sch•dissera! 23:53, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Politis[edit]

Statement forthcoming on Monday, 20 April 2009. Many editors who argue for this article to be called RoM, as it was until a few days ago have outstanding contributions to wikipedia. Many were involved in making Macedonia (terminology) into a featured article. The map of one of those editors has even found fame beyond wikipedia in (Slav) Macedonian blogs and sites and is happily used. Users came together to agree on a line of conduct over when to use Macedonia, RoM, Fyrom, Greek Macedonia, etc. It worked. Users, such as myself, then went on to revert some reference to Fyrom into RoM because we had agreed. Now, those users seem to be vilified for wishing to abide by the status quo as agreed. That seems wrong. Please reconsider.Politis (talk) 17:57, 20 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Shadowmorph[edit]

I'm the proverbial new editor. I was previously anonymous but Macedonia is protected from those for ever. I was trying to improve Macedonia dab page and along with the guardians there after bold edits and talks we finally spitted for the adjective to have it's own page like Irish and Ireland (an improvement). ChrisO made two moves. First he moved Macedonia to Macedonia (disambiguation) and lied to us about the reason (in addition to ignoring the talk page). Then he moved the Republic of Macedonia article to Macedonia. That way he ridiculed me as a new editor, and showed me the door together with all other potential new editors. He did this on an Orthodox Good Friday, to avoid confrontation, since all those that would care enough to object would be from Greece (religion) or Bulgaria (religion). He effectively started an edit war, with a tactic I parallelized (in a figure of speech) similar to Yom Kippur War.

That can't be acceptable behaviour from an admin. Furthermore he wasn't being bold in making an edit like I did with moving Macedon to Macedonia (ancient kingdom) which I discussed too. That can be reverted. Rather ChrisO was bold in deciding and locking to a new name for a move-protected page. The way to go, on an encyclopedia "anyone can edit"? Is Wikipedia now written by the admins, do they get to chose the names only?. He knew that there would never be consensus to move it back, therefore he was bold in creating a new status quo for the page. The funny part is that there never was in 5 years any talk or reason to move it, Republic of Macedonia was the consensus (in the wiki way). But aside from that, the name issue is important. Why do I bother? The first result from Google to anyone uninformed on the matters of Macedonia (region) is always the Wikipedia entry named "Macedonia". So, ChrisO's move can be seen as a Google bomb, not an administrative move.

"Macedonia" is used in a wide context (chronically). Is Wikipedia just a reference or is it a learning tool? Do the uneducated users learn anything on the historic region, when they go to Macedonia like they do with Georgia? ChrisO also opened the statistics Pandora's box, with many flaws. Statistics also showed Georgia (country) over Georgia in the stats for August 2008, and the name of Republic of Macedonia is right now on the news (elections, NATO & EU ascension, etc)

In the time pressure, I had to become creative, finding new statistical arguments WP could use elsewhere. Please see my discussions here and here for the actual English common usage of the word Macedonia.Macedonia, Ohio is favored (that's not a "Greek nationalist" thing to say, but people called me that in WP)

If WP has to have a Macedonia (terminology) article, that is by itself a reason to say that there is no single main topic It's just like the American (word) situation. Besides the policy on WP:Naming conflicts was broken by the move. It cites Republic of Ireland as a good example and says "chances are there isn't that great of a need to move it in the first place". Another example is Micronesia.

The naming dispute might be resolved soon. Let me just say that other neutrals like the UN resorted to temporary solutions, and Wikipedia is not on a WP:DEADLINE. What's with the rush, if not to create a new Wikipedia status quo? WP should remain as neutral as it can be. "Republic of Macedonia" is not the neutral solution either, but the very one that is disputed, since the dispute is over the name (not the existence of the state, like in Kosovo). But since RoM is the self-identification, constitutionally, RoM is as neutral as it gets for an encyclopedia. Shadowmorph (talk) 18:40, 20 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Caspian blue[edit]

I'm not sure as to why I'm called an involved editor, but have an interest in how ArbCom would handle the long-term and tendentious nationalistic dispute. I expect that whatever remedy comes from the case would be a precedant for other heated naming disputes. The recent two ANI reports on administrators' conducts regarding the issue - Húsönd's ethnic filling and ChrisO's unilateral move of the page - attracted me to take a look at the case. Some say ChrisO and Húsönd's conducts enforced "obvious is obvious, so let's endorse for them to fix it". I have to disagree with this view because of several reasons. First, the dispute in reality is not settled yet, so we have to respect the both side and reflect the current situation without any bias. Second, administrators are supposed to assist editors to resolve disputes, not to inflate them. However see what results have been generated by their conducts; flaring the flame. They mix administrator's roles with their editorial POV and emotions too much. The page move under the protection is not a fair play even considering the fact that he knew the Greek holidays. The pointy and unilateral action based on his firm belief that he is doing right is arguable enough. ChrisO argues that if any administrator move back the title, that would be "wheel war" which can be a ground for de-sysopping. I'm very concerned about his ethics and interpretation of our policies. I feel uneasy that many tend to blame the dispute all to Greek as calling ultra-nationalists. How so? Name accompanies identity matters, so we can not attribute this dispute to just one side. One thing to remind that not every state members of UN recognize Republic of Macedonia, and English is unarguably the current lingua franca in the world. So I expect ArbCom examines the case thoroughly and handle it fairly.--Caspian blue 02:43, 21 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Ev[edit]

On 9 April I commented on the gestating arbitration at Talk:Greece (diff., scroll down: it's the last comment of the page).

Please, do not dedicate too much of your time to the bold actions by ChrisO that precipitated the filing of this case: whether adequate or not, it is one single, easily reversable action made in good faith. — Little harm can come out of it.

Instead, focus on the subjacent reasons that led ChrisO to take such action: the general editing environment around these topics, the existence of a group of Greek editors determined to have our articles reflect their biases (as described by others above). — This is the source of much (most?) of the constant problems, and harm does come out of it. - Ev (talk) 19:30, 21 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statement by Dr.K. (Tasoskessaris)[edit]

The plethora of detailed statements and excellent rationales by Yannis, AndreasJS, John Carter and Shadowmorph fully address my concerns. Therefore since these excellent points were made by them as well as others I will avoid repeating many of their arguments here. I would like however to expand on a point John Carter made about trust. As John Carter so eloquently and diplomatically mentioned the actions of ChrisO damage the trust of established as well as newer editors. Administrators in Wikipedia hold a very special place in the community. Their authority is maintained and respected when they excercise their power with measure and discipline and always upholding the policies of the community as well as the trust of the editors. Most admins do this job remarkably well and so even though Wikipedia is not a democracy most editors feel as if they are on an equal editorial footing with the administrators because they trust that the administrators will follow due process at all times. In the few instances where administrators undertake to act in a heroic fashion and start using heroic terminology like cutting the Gordian knot, you know instinctively something went wrong. When administrators use their tools as super-powers then Wikipedia becomes Smallville, Metropolis or Gotham city. Nice places all but they seem not very suitable models for encyclopedia building. To paraphrase Tina Turner: We Don't Need Another Hero, because we are not in Thunderdome but in Wikipedia. Even Future Perfect commenting on ChrisO's actions called them a coup (italics not mine). As I said before, I know Wikipedia is not a democracy but I hope it will not soon become a banana republic either. There are many other issues remaining that I will not address in detail here, such as the use of nationality/ethnicity (or even suspected ethnicity) based statistics to cast a wide pall over a group of editors and other similar anti-intellectual tactics employed by certain admins and which I consider particularly harmful to the project, to logic and to any intellectual pursuit in general. In closing I urge Arbcom to address these points that I raised, as well as many other peripheral issues so capably enunciated by the other participants, for the good of this project. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Cacharoth for his helpful guidance regarding the background of this controversy and his comments concerning the Easter celebrations. Dr.K. logos 00:05, 21 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Preliminary decisions[edit]

Arbitrators' opinion on hearing this matter (13/0/0/0)[edit]

  • Accept, primarily to examine the use of administrative tools in this matter—I note that the article was, and remains, move-protected—but also to try and move the broader dispute towards resolution. Yannismarou, please add as parties (and provide appropriate notification to) the editors involved in the naming dispute, as well as any others who have expressed interest in participating in the case that was to be filed on the 22nd. Kirill [pf] 03:15, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Comment, I need to understand something here that's of critical importance, I think: is the community requesting that ArbCom settle the naming dispute itself? I understand that one administrator's action precipitated this early filing of a request, but the intent was to bring this to ArbCom all along? — Coren (talk) 03:23, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Accept; It does seem that the community methods have broken down in this area, and that ArbCom might help. — Coren (talk) 13:18, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept, I am never surprised when these areas of real world ethnic/political strife come here. As Fut Perf says, this is an area where wiki consensus building regularly fails and we as a community need to find better ways to work with this type of situation. The consensus model regularly fails here because each side, due to long term centuries-old strife in the area/topic, perceives the truth, as they see it, being twisted. Focus should be on admin behavior and conduct of all users, not what the titles should be.RlevseTalk 10:01, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept To examine admin conduct, and to assist the Community in finding a solution to the naming conflict (not select the name). FloNight♥♥♥ 10:57, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept, both to look at the recent move but also the underlying issue in the sense that it would have been brought to us anyway next week. As Flo says, we will, as always, not be resolving the content dispute, but we can provide a framework for resolution. --bainer (talk) 12:46, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept Wizardman 16:19, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept. Please note that when the case opens I will post some questions thay I will be asking the parties (and interested others) to address. Newyorkbrad (talk) 16:31, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept -- FayssalF - Wiki me up® 18:21, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept. Risker (talk) 23:10, 17 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept. Would like to suggest here that the opening of the case is delayed until 22nd April, for several reasons: (1) So ArbCom can finish off some other cases that need our attention; (2) To fit in with the original intention to file on 22nd April - mainly, as I understand it, to fit in with the dates of Orthodox Easter; (3) To give those involved time to gather their thoughts; (4) To enable discussion of the case name (request name conflicts with an article of that name), the case scope and who should be the named parties; (5) To enable people to read the megabytes of discussion that has taken place around this topic; (6) For arbitrators and the editors involved at this topic to read the following articles: Macedonia naming dispute, Macedonia (disambiguation), and Macedonia (terminology); (7) For those involved in the naming dispute to consider whether time spent discussing the name of the article might be better spent improving articles, as was done with Macedonia (terminology) (a featured article). In general, a way does need to be found to resolve these perennial disputes for set periods of time (say two years) so that in between the periodic debates, work is actually done on other articles instead. Whether by Gordian Knot-type resolution or otherwise. But these nationalist naming disputes need to be settled because they are a large drain in time and resources (several recent and current arbitration cases have been disputes over article names). Carcharoth (talk) 00:11, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept.  Roger Davies talk 11:37, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept per flonight. Casliber (talk · contribs) 14:38, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept. --Vassyana (talk) 19:08, 19 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Accept. --John Vandenberg (chat) 09:41, 21 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Temporary injunction[edit]

1) No Macedonia-related article, broadly defined, shall be moved/renamed until after the "Macedonia 2" case closes. If it does occur, any uninvolved administrator can expeditiously revert it. After the case closes, Macedonia-related moves/renames can occur as prescribed in the final decision.

  1. RlevseTalk 11:28, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  2. Noting here that ArbCom won't say what the name(s) should be, but that we will almost certainly be laying out a framework, or urging that a framework be set up, for achieving a lasting resolution to this issue (or at least for a set period to allow editing energies to be productively channelled elsewhere for that period). Discussions on how to resolve this should still continue, but no moving or renaming (with obvious exceptions such as typos on newly-created articles). Carcharoth (talk) 11:34, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  3. With minor copy-edit.  Roger Davies talk 11:37, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  4. John Vandenberg (chat) 11:41, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  5. Since there is a delay in opening the case, this proposal seems sensible as there was likely to be a similar injunction proposed soon after the case opened. FloNight♥♥♥ 13:20, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    We can just move this to the injunction, no need to revote. RlevseTalk 13:21, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Yes, there will be no need for another vote. This motion covers the situations. We are doing it this way instead of an injunction because of the delay. FloNight♥♥♥ 13:28, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  6. Wizardman 14:40, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  7. Risker (talk) 14:53, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  8. Sam Blacketer (talk) 22:50, 18 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  9. Casliber (talk · contribs) 02:00, 19 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  10. FayssalF - Wiki me up® 11:52, 19 April 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Passed 10 to 0 at 09:18, 19 April 2009.

Final decision[edit]


Purpose of Wikipedia[edit]

1) The purpose of Wikipedia is to create a high-quality, free-content encyclopedia in an atmosphere of camaraderie and mutual respect among contributors. Contributors whose actions are detrimental to that goal may be asked to refrain from them, even when these actions are undertaken in good faith; and good faith actions, where disruptive, may still be sanctioned. Use of the site for other purposes—including, but not limited to, advocacy, propaganda, furtherance of outside conflicts, and political or ideological struggle—is prohibited.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


2) Wikipedia's code of conduct is one of the five pillars of Wikipedia that all editors should adhere to. Wikipedia users are expected to behave reasonably and calmly in their interactions with other users, to keep their cool when editing, and to avoid acting in a manner that brings the project into disrepute. Administrators are expected to adhere to this at a higher standard. Unseemly conduct—including, but not limited to, edit-warring, personal attacks, lack of respect for other editors, failure to work towards consensus, disrupting Wikipedia to make a point, offensive language (including rude, offensive, derogatory, and insulting terms—whether in English, a language other than English, or using invented terms), trolling, harassment, gaming the system, and failure to assume good faith are all inconsistent with Wikipedia etiquette. Users should not respond to such behavior in kind; concerns regarding the actions of other users should be brought up in the appropriate forums.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Wikipedia's content governance[edit]

3.1) Wikipedia content issues —including naming conventions— are governed by its internal editorial policies. Although the points of view of individual states, international organizations or groups, and their views or conventions supported by official sources may be taken into account, they should not constitute a basis for Wikipedia consensus themselves.

Passed 12 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


4) Wikipedia relies on a consensus model. When there is a good-faith dispute, editors are expected to participate in the consensus-building process, in lieu of soapboxing, edit warring, or other inappropriate behavior. Abuse of the consensus model and process, such as misrepresenting consensus or poisoning the well, is disruptive.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Consensus can change[edit]

5) Consensus is not immutable. It is reasonable, and sometimes necessary, for both individual editors and particularly the community as a whole to change its mind. Long-held consensus cannot be used as an excuse against a change that follows Wikipedia's policies.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Administrator standards[edit]

6) Administrators are trusted members of the community, who are expected to follow Wikipedia policies and are held to a high standard of conduct. They are expected to pursue their duties to the best of their abilities. Occasional mistakes are entirely compatible with this; administrators are not expected to be perfect. However, consistently or egregiously poor judgment may result in the removal of administrator status.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Disruption by administrators[edit]

7) Sustained disruption of Wikipedia is incompatible with the status of administrator. Administrators who repeatedly and aggressively engage in inappropriate activity may be desysopped by the Arbitration Committee.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Use of administrator tools in a dispute[edit]

8) Administrator actions pertaining to enforcing Wikipedia's conduct policies, such as the sockpuppetry policy, the biographies of living persons policy, the vandalism policy, the civility policy, and WP:BATTLE, do not make an editor involved in a topic. Administrators are not empowered to enforce content policies such as the neutral point of view policy and the verifiability policy by using administrative tools. Administrator tools may not be used to further the administrator's own position in a content dispute. Administrators who are unsure whether they should take an action should defer that action to an uninvolved administrator.

Passed 6 to 5 (with 3 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Involved administrators[edit]

9) In several recent instances, administrators involved in disputes have taken sysop actions relating to that dispute and then referred the actions typically to either the administrators' noticeboard or the incidents noticeboard for endorsement or review. This does not comply with policy. In such circumstances, the 'involved' administrator should not take the action but should instead report the issue to the noticeboard, perhaps with a suggestion for appropriate action, to be dealt with by an uninvolved administrator. In limited circumstances, such as blatant vandalism or bad-faith harassment, an involved administrator may act, but such exceptions are likely to be rare.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Administrator communications[edit]

10) Administrators are required to explain their actions. When an administrator takes an action that is likely to be controversial or to raise questions, he or she should explain the action in advance or at the time, in a location that the affected editors are likely to see, so that they will understand what has been done and why.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


11) Users who have been sanctioned for improper conduct are expected to avoid repeating it should they continue to participate in the project. Failure to do so may lead to the imposition of increasingly severe sanctions.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Edit wars considered harmful[edit]

12) Edit-warring is harmful. When disagreements arise, users are expected to discuss their differences rationally rather than reverting ad infinitum. Revert rules should not be construed as an entitlement or inalienable right to revert, nor do they endorse reverts as an editing technique.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Neutral point of view[edit]

13) Wikipedia:Neutral point of view states "Where proper nouns such as names are concerned, disputes may arise over whether a particular name should be used. Wikipedia takes a descriptive rather than prescriptive approach in such cases, by using the common English language name as found in verifiable reliable sources."

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Neutral point of view 2[edit]

14) Article content must be presented from a neutral point of view. Where different scholarly viewpoints exist on a topic, those views enjoying a reasonable degree of support should be reflected in article content. An article should fairly represent the weight of authority for each such view, and should not give undue weight to views held by a relatively small minority of commentators or scholars.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Tendentious editing[edit]

15) Users who disrupt the editing of articles by engaging in sustained aggressive point-of-view editing may be banned from the affected articles. In extreme cases they may be banned from the site.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Naming Conventions[edit]

16) Wikipedia:Naming conventions states: "Generally, article naming should prefer what the greatest number of English speakers would most easily recognize." Wikipedia determines the recognizability of a name by seeing what verifiable reliable sources in English call the subject." Wikipedia does not take any position on whether a particular person, group or nation has the right to use a particular name, particularly the name it uses for itself (a self-identifying name). Articles should report the objective fact that such names are used; if another nation or group disputes the right to use that name, then information about that dispute (if it is notable) should also be given in the appropriate place. Bear in mind that Wikipedia is descriptive, not prescriptive. Wikipedia:Naming conventions also deprecates the use of full formal names in article titles.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Naming disputes[edit]

17) Protracted naming disputes are not a highly productive form of encyclopedia building and should be avoided if at all possible. Effort spent on actually improving articles as opposed to engaging in disputes over their names is highly encouraged.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


18) The purpose of disambiguation, as defined by Wikipedia:Disambiguation (WP:DAB), is to resolve "conflicts in Wikipedia article titles that occur when a single term can be associated with more than one topic, making that term likely to be the natural title for more than one article." For primary topics, "When there is a well-known primary topic for an ambiguous term, name or phrase ... then that term or phrase should either be used for the title of the article on that topic or redirect to that article." The guideline goes on to state: "If there is extended discussion about which article truly is the primary topic, that may be a sign that there is in fact no primary topic, and that the disambiguation page should be located at the plain title with no "(disambiguation)"." Disambiguation is not a means of promoting, endorsing or rejecting the point of view of any party or parties to a naming or other dispute.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Wikilawyering and stonewalling[edit]

19) Excessive formalistic and legalistic argument over policies and stonewalling, which ignores the spirit of those policies and serves to obstruct consensus-building processes or cover up an agenda of POV-pushing, is harmful to the project and may be met with sanctions.

Passed 7 to 4 (with 3 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


20) Per WP:Outing, outing has not occurred if an editor has previously voluntarily self-identified his or her country, language, nationality, or other personal information. Subsequent posting of that information by other users does not constitute outing. If a user has redacted that information, their wishes should be respected.

Passed 9 to 4 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Collective behavior of blocs of editors[edit]

21) It is potentially harmful to Wikipedia when editorial debates become strongly associated with real-world political polarizations and when they become dominated by groups of editors lined up along political lines due to shared national backgrounds. This is particularly harmful when such editors act in concert to systematically advocate editorial decisions considered favorable to their shared political views that contravene the application of Wikipedia policy or obstruct consensus-building. Mere strength of numbers is not sufficient to contravene Wikipedia policy. Defending editorial positions that support political preferences typical of a particular national background is not ipso facto evidence of bad-faith editing.

Passed 12 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Controversial page moves[edit]

22.1) Any page move that is or is likely to be controversial should be discussed beforehand on the page's talk page, and/or at any other pertinent location. The methods outlined at Wikipedia:Requested moves represent a best practice approach for such circumstances.

Passed 12 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Request for comment/User conduct[edit]

23) A user-conduct request for comment ("RfC/U") represents a forum in which editors may raise concerns about the conduct of a fellow editor or administrator. Although this procedure can be misused, when utilized in good faith, it presents an editor with the opportunity to learn that concerns exist about his or her conduct, respond to the concerns, and if appropriate adjust his or her conduct. Civility and decorum are especially important in the highly charged atmosphere of a user-conduct RfC. RfCs should not be used abusively, nor should the concerns raised in an RfC be ignored.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Sanctions and circumstances[edit]

24) In deciding what sanctions to impose against an administrator or other editor, the Arbitration Committee will consider the editor's overall record of participation, behavioral history, and other relevant circumstances. An editor's positive and valuable contributions in one aspect of his or her participation on Wikipedia do not excuse misbehavior or questionable judgment in another aspect of participation, but may be considered in determining the sanction to be imposed.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Single purpose accounts[edit]

25) Single purpose accounts are expected to contribute neutrally instead of following their own agenda and, in particular, should take care to avoid creating the impression that their focus on one topic is non-neutral, which could strongly suggest that their editing is not compatible with the goals of this project.

Passed 11 to 2 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


26) The recruitment of editors for the purpose of influencing a survey, performing reverts, or otherwise attempting to give the appearance of consensus is strongly discouraged.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


27) Excessive cross-posting, campaigning, votestacking, stealth canvassing, and forum shopping are inappropriate forms of canvassing.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Return of access levels[edit]

28) Users who give up their administrator (or other) privileges and later request the return of those privileges may have them restored upon request, provided they did not give them up under circumstances of controversy. Users who give up privileges under controversial circumstances must go through the normal channels (such as a Request for adminship) to regain them. Determining whether an administrator resigned under controversial circumstances is, in most cases, in the discretion of the bureaucrats. However, an administrator who requests desysopping while an arbitration case or a request for arbitration is pending against him or her will be deemed to have left under circumstances of controversy, unless the Arbitration Committee decides otherwise, for purposes of applying this rule.

Passed 12 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Findings of fact[edit]

Locus of dispute[edit]

1) While the disputes presented in this case are very similar to issues in the first Macedonia arbitration case (Wikipedia:ARBMAC), the core dispute in this arbitration concerns Macedonia as defined in #Four Macedonias. While focusing specifically on issues related to Macedonia, these issues are part of a broader set of conflicts prevalent over the entire range of articles concerning the Balkans; see, for example, the Dalmatia case and the Kosovo case. Many of these conflicts are grounded in matters external to Wikipedia, including long-standing historical, national, and ethnic disputes in the region.

Passed 11 to 1 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Immediate precursor of dispute[edit]

2) The immediate precursor to this arbitration was two edits by ChrisO (talk · contribs), an administrator with a long involvement in the debate: on April 14, 2009, he moved a disambiguation page from Macedonia to Macedonia (disambiguation), stating that this was a "minor change".[3] This required him to delete the previous page at that location, [4]. Then, on April 16, 2009, he moved a country article from Republic of Macedonia to Macedonia. ChrisO made this pagemove without prior discussion, arguing that this was the solution best in line with existing policy, and that in these very exceptional circumstances prior discussion would have been useless because the expected stonewalling from the Greek editors would make consensus-forming impossible. The article had previously been move-protected for a very long time, and has remained so since; hence, administrator rights were required to move it. Reactions to this move, including reactions from previously uninvolved outside editors, were mostly critical of the process, but partly supportive of the result. [5], [6], [7] ChrisO did not change "Republic of Macedonia" to "Macedonia" anywhere else. He also acknowledges he is aware of the importance of the timing due to Easter holidays. [8] He also states the move was delayed because he was on international travel. [9]

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Four Macedonias[edit]

3) There are four meanings for "Macedonia" pertinent to this arbitration:

  • Macedonia (region): A historical/geographical region, today split between Albania, Bulgaria, Greece and the independent Republic of Macedonia (part of Yugoslavia until 1992)
  • Macedonia (ancient kingdom), also called Macedon
  • Republic of Macedonia: The independent state by itself which was part of Yugoslavia
  • Macedonia (Greece): Three Greek provinces collectively referred to as Macedonia, though it is not actually a political entity in itself.
Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Macedonia Manual of Style[edit]

4) The disputes regarding Macedonia related articles go back several years, to at least October 2003. On May 11, 2007, several users, including ChrisO (talk · contribs), NikoSilver (talk · contribs), and Pmanderson (talk · contribs) began writing a Manual of Style guide specifically for Macedonia-related articles, henceforth WP:MOSMAC. Four days later, frustration was already apparent. MOSMAC and MOSMAC2 are essays, not Wikipedia policies.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Macedonia status-quo[edit]

5) Since circa 2006/2007, there was a relatively stable status quo, though not a consensus, that was respected by most regular editors in the field. Part of this status quo was that the "Former Yugoslav" form was used in the Greece and Greece-related articles. [10], [11], [12], [13], [14], [15], [16], [17], [18], [19], [20]

This is hard to show as this is shown by an absence of diffs so here's another view:
  • [21] (proposed guideline text, as of October 2007: "There is currently no clearly defined consensus about how to refer to the Republic of Macedonia in articles about Greece. [...] when in doubt, it is recommended to leave the status quo in each article as is." This was stable since October 2007.)
  • [22] (ChrisO's attempt at summarising the status quo: "in articles dealing only with the internal affairs of Greece […] use "former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia")
  • [23] (Subsequent discussion about that summary: "The consensus was […] that there is no consensus, and that's what the body of the guideline text correctly describes. There is an agreement that status quo should remain stable; there most emphatically is no consensus that that status quo currently predominant in most Greece articles (using "fY...") should be mandated as obligatory for new content.")
  • [24] (tweak to summary at MOSMAC, which subsequently remained stable)
Passed 11 to 0 (with 3 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Challenge to the Macedonia status-quo[edit]

6) In late March 2009, the status quo at the Greece article was challenged by a number of editors, who proposed switching to the "Republic of..." convention. During the ensuing controversy, editors of both sides supported their respected views with great tenacity, and often exhibited inappropriate behavior such as disruption, filibustering, assumptions of bad faith, personal attacks/ad hominems, edit warring, assumptions of bad faith, by both those supporting and opposing the change. This resulted in protection of the page. A straw poll held in parallel ended in a polarized roughly 50/50 result: about half of the respondents, mostly self-identified Greeks, advocated "former Yugoslav..."; the other half, mostly from elsewhere, advocated "Republic of". read the summaries, shows how it spilled to non-Greece articles, straw poll results

Passed 12 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Abuse Filter 119[edit]

7) Abuse Filter 119 was set up on March 30, 2009 to track instances of the link "republic of macedonia", or the name "FYROM" and "Former Yugoslav", being added or removed from articles. It has been triggered over 500 times as of 25 May 2009.[25]

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


8) Articles relating to or simply mentioning Macedonia have been and are being subjected to frequent vandalism and disruptive editing, characterized by ethnic polarization, in an effort to promote one side or the other's particular view.

Passed 13 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Previous attempts to reach consensus have failed[edit]

9) Manual of Style (Macedonia-related articles) was proposed to find a common approach to this naming issue, but failed to achieve consensus. WP:ARBMAC, WP:ARBMAC2, read the summaries, how it spilled to tangential articles, straw poll results, [26], [27], [28], [29], [30], [31], [32], [33], [34]

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


ChrisO's change of a template[edit]

10.1) ChrisO (talk · contribs) changed text in a protected template, {{MKD}}, after several days of discussion in a topic in which he was heavily involved. ChrisO then edited the MoS leaving 'template convention, mirroring RoM guideline' as an edit summary.

Passed 9 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO's plan to move Republic of Macedonia was pre-disclosed[edit]

11) Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs) confirmed he had prior knowledge that ChrisO was considering article and disambiguation page changes. [35], [36], [37], [38]

Passed 9 to 0 (with 5 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO moved Republic of Macedonia to Macedonia[edit]

12) While ChrisO (talk · contribs) subsequently gave a rational explanation of why he moved Republic of Macedonia, which was move protected, to Macedonia, he did so without first obtaining consensus. [39]

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO's involvement in Balkan-related articles[edit]

13) ChrisO (talk · contribs) was found to have edit-warred and have heavily edited Balkan-related articles in the Kosovo arbitration case of 2006. As a result of that, he was advised not to engage in edit warring and not to use rollback in content disputes. edit warring, involvement, warning

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO previously admonished[edit]

14.1) ChrisO (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) was previously admonished in the Israeli apartheid case not to use his administrative tools without prior discussion and consensus, nor to use them so as to continue an editing dispute.

Passed 13 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO's admits being an involved administrator[edit]

15) ChrisO (talk · contribs) admitted on April 16, 2009 that he is an involved administrator and acknowledged he should not take administrative actions in this topic. [40]

Passed 8 to 2 (with 4 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO restricted in the Scientology arbitration[edit]

16) ChrisO (talk · contribs) agreed to a voluntary restriction limiting his editing and banning his use of sysop tools in Scientology-related articles. Findings of fact, restriction

Passed 7 to 6 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise[edit]

Future Perfect at Sunrise's behavior[edit]

17) Future_Perfect_at_Sunrise (talk · contribs) has been incivil, intimidating, and insulting. [41], [42], [43], [44], [45], [46], [47], [48], [49], [50], [51], (in summary), (in summary), (in summary)

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise's redirection of Macedonians (Greeks)[edit]

18) Macedonians (Greeks) was the subject of an AFD that closed on April 18, 2009 as "no consensus". After that closing, Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs), who had participated in the AFD, redirected the article using the summary "consensus at AfD was that this page as it currently stands is not useful. Redirecting again, until somebody writes something better". On April 21, 2009, he redirected the article again using the summary "rv, the article is worthless". At the time of the second redirection, this is what the article looked like. It presently looks like this.

Passed 9 to 2 (with 3 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise was put on 1RR[edit]

19) As a result of this 3RR report of April 18, 2009, Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs) was put on 1RR on Miladinov Brothers by William M. Connolley (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) for edit warring on the article. sanctions here.

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise's stated intent to edit war[edit]

20.1) On 2 April 2009, Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) said at Talk:Greece that:

"...there is an overwhelming project-wide consensus of uninvolved users, versus an equally overwhelming consensus of a small local faction armed only with undefeatable tenacity. There is not the tiniest chance that one side will ever convince the other. So, the solution is not to have more talk. The solution, I'm very much afraid, is to fight it out, until one side wins. And that, unfortunately, will mean: until one side is banned."

He later responded to replies to that comment by saying that he was:

"...perfectly willing to make this a test case. Either the Wikipedia community surrenders to the power of local national factions, or it fights them."

After the first comment was raised in a discussion at the administrators' incidents noticeboard, Future Perfect at Sunrise said there that:

"...[a]s long as Wikipedia doesn't find a way to reduce the power of local POV cliques, I will protest and, if necessary, edit-war against them."

He later removed a three-revert rule warning template from his user talk page with the edit summary "LOL, I'm perfectly aware of what I am doing, thank you very much for your kind concern."

Passed 11 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise's block of Sadbuttrue92 and warning by an arbitrator[edit]

21) On April 21, 2009, the day before this arbitration opened, Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs) blocked Sadbuttrue92 (talk · contribs) because Sadbuttrue92 was harassing him. FPAS took it to ANI for block review since he was involved. Most reviewers felt Sadbuttrue92 did deserve a block but felt someone else should have done it. FPAS's response was to blank the entry by Sadbuttrue92 with an edit summary in Greek that roughly means "fuck off, you wanker", but FPAS thought it meant "go to hell". FPAS was warned by arbitrator Cool Hand Luke (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) not to do this again.

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise's User Conduct RFC[edit]

23) Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs) was the subject of a user conduct Request For Comment during August-November 2008 that primarily focused on concerns about incivility, assuming good faith, how he handled images, and tendentious editing. While he did make an effort to address some of the concerns, he also argued at the conclusion of the RFC to the point that the conclusion was moved to an outside view vice placing it in a closing template which was the practice at that time. The closing admin, now an arbitrator, stated "...just because one works in a difficult area does not give a user the right to attack another. As a result, I caution FPS to be more civil and to avoid personal attacks...". FPAS also stated "I mean, does anybody seriously expect I'm still reading it?"

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise is an involved administrator[edit]

24) Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs) is an administrator involved in this, 3RR report, [52], [53]

Passed 8 to 0 (with 5 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

John Carter and Taivo[edit]

25) John Carter (talk · contribs) has been disruptive during the arbitration case; specifically [54], [55], [56] and sent a very demeaning email to Taivo (talk · contribs) via wikimail on May 14, 2009. Taivo subsequently released the email without permission to two other users.[57], [58]

Passed 9 to 0 (with 5 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


Personal attacks by Reaper7[edit]

26) Reaper7 (talk · contribs) has violated Wikipedia:No personal attacks by accusing other editors of bigotry, utilizing terminology conveying ethnic hatred, and accusing other users of lying and ignorance. [59], [60], [61] and [62] (note "Fyromian" is considered offensive by many), [63], [64], [65]; and [66] where he thinks FPAS is Greek and asks if he is of "Greek blood".

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Reaper7 engaged in canvassing[edit]

27) Reaper7 (talk · contribs) engaged in inappropriate canvassing after being warned about original research. User:Avg [67], User:SQRT5P1D2 [68], User:Shadowmorph [69], User:Yannismarou [70], User:AndreasJS [71], User:Tasoskessaris [72], User:Giorgos_Tzimas[73], User:Dragases [74].

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


SQRT5P1D2 solicited meatpuppets[edit]

28) SQRT5P1D2 (talk · contribs) has solicited meatpuppets, specifically Greek-speaking Usenet users, to support his position on Wikipedia. [75]

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

SQRT5P1D2 is a Macedonia-focused single-purposed account[edit]

29) SQRT5P1D2 (talk · contribs) is a single-purpose account whose involvement with Wikipedia has been almost entirely been focused on editing a handful of Macedonia-related articles and this arbitration case.

Passed 10 to 3 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Radjenef is a Macedonia-focused single-purposed account[edit]

30) Radjenef (talk · contribs) is a single-purpose account (see contribs) whose involvement with Wikipedia has been almost entirely been focused on editing a handful of Macedonia-related articles and this arbitration case.

Passed 9 to 2 (with 3 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Nick ts has edit-warred[edit]

31) Nick ts (talk · contribs) has edit-warred disruptively on 2008 Greek riots and has continued to edit war after a block ended. Contributions here, block log here

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Alfadog777 is a Macedonia-focused single purpose account who has edit-warred[edit]

32) Alfadog777 (talk · contribs) is a single-purpose account whose involvement with Wikipedia has been almost entirely been focused on editing a handful of Macedonia-related articles and this arbitration case. He has edit-warred disruptively on List of national animals to push a Greek nationalist POV. [76], [77], [78], [79]

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


Avg's disruption[edit]

33) Avg (talk · contribs) has disrupted the project through years-long systematic advocacy editing in issues of Greek national disputes, including the Macedonia naming issue. He has a battle ground mentality and has threatened to edit war without compromising. [80], [81], [82], [83], [84], [85], [86], [87], [88], [89], [90] (calling opponent's edit vandalism), [91], [92], [93], [94], [95], [96], [97] (during these proceedings)

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Avg's assumptions about other editors[edit]

34) Avg (talk · contribs) is prone to exaggeration and showing lack of good faith in the motives of other editors. intent to edit war til banned, [98], in the case workshop he calls an attempt at updating guidelines "sabotage"; calling an obvious alternate account, User:Former Abbreviated Username of Future Perfect at Sunrise a "disruptive purpose" sock; accusing others of an intent to deceive, [99] (insinuating opponent might abuse oversight to get rid of allegedly embarrassing material). He also accused Greece666 (talk · contribs), who self-identified as Greek but disagreed with him on the Macedonia question, of lying and calling him "FYROMian" and "leftist", often writing in Greek. See User talk:Greece666#If you are Greek, I'm Martian. More evidence of lack of assuming WP:AGF and wiki-lawyering: [100], [101], [102], [103], [104]

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Kekrops' disruption[edit]

35) ΚΕΚΡΩΨ (talk · contribs) (Kekrops) has disrupted the project through years-long systematic advocacy editing in issues of Greek national disputes, including the Macedonia naming issue. He has shown a pattern of persistent and excessive wikilawyering, edit-warring and multiple instances of ad hominem personal attacks. [105], [106], [107], [108], [109], [110], [111], [112], [113], [114], [115], [116], [117], [118], [119], [120], [121], [122], [123], [124], [125], [126], [127], [128], [129], [130], [131], [132], [133], [134], [135], [136] [137], [138], [139], [140], [141], [142], [143], [144], [145], [146], [147]. He has also at times shown respect for those who oppose him and willingness to compromise [148].

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Shadowmorph is a Macedonia-focused single purpose account[edit]

36) Shadowmorph (talk · contribs) is a single-purpose account whose involvement with Wikipedia has been almost entirely been focused on editing a handful of Macedonia-related articles and this arbitration case. [149], [150], [151], [152], [153], [154], [155] It is also noted that Shadowmorph has recently started broadening his areas of interest and working on improving articles.

Passed 10 to 2 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

IP Editors have disrupted Wikipedia[edit]

37) IP editors from both sides have been disruptive by changing articles to a particular POV without a consensus to do so. This is often done on pages which have no direct connection to Greece, Macedonia, or their peoples, languages, or cultures. The effect disrupts Wikipedia, overshadows legitimate IP edits, and leads to a battleground mentality among registered editors. [156], [157], [158], [159], [160], a set from an IP, [161][162][163][164][165][166][167][168], but also in unrelated or loosely related ancient/Byzantine Greek pages, e.g. Cyril and Method example[169].

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Yannismarou has edit warred[edit]

38) Yannismarou (talk · contribs) has edit warred. [170], [171], [172], [173], [174], [175]. He has also expressed regret for it. [176]

Passed 10 to 3 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Collective behavior of blocs of editors[edit]

39) Over several years, many editors have represented an identifiable opinion faction with regard to Macedonia-related articles. While many of the editors concerned have undoubtedly acted individually in good faith, and the individual conduct of most of them did not reach a level of disruption that would normally call for individual sanctions, their actions taken together have taken on a collectively disruptive form. The stance of these factions, as represented by a small number of core regular editors and a larger volatile group of occasional supporters, has had the collective effect of permanently blocking regular consensus-seeking mechanisms. Many of these editors have shown a willingness to use Wikipedia as a mechanism to pursue their national political interests. The collective net effect of this is to create a bloc whose influence is at times disproportionate to its size and at times has the result of negating Wikipedia policies. Wikipedia's goal is to create a neutral and factual encyclopedia in a consensus-based environment. Methods used by these factions include: wikilawyering, overt appeals to political considerations, "refusal to get the point", hyperbole, filibustering, assumptions of bad faith, personal attacks, external lobbying, and edit warring. Several outside editors have over time turned away from the dispute exasperated by the immobility of these opinion blocs. Users turning away: [177], [178], [179], [180]. Nationalistic fervor and insulting others: [181], [182], [183], [184], [185], [186], [187], [188], [189], [190], [191], and [192]. Search and replace tools are often used: [193], [194]. It has even come from official sources such as the Greek Parliament: [195], [196]. Specific types of examples:

  • Replacing "Republic of Macedonia" with invented POV or pejorative terms (e.g. "Former Yugoslavic Republic of Macedonia", "Vardarska", "Slavomacedonia", "Republic of FYROM", "Republic of Skopje", "Bananadonia" and "Monkeydonia"). [226], [227], [228], [229], [230], [231], [232], [233], [234], [235]
Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO's administrator status[edit]

40) ChrisO resigned his status as an administrator on June 6, 2009, while this arbitration case was pending, and just prior to that gave himself rollback rights. [255], [256]

Passed 10 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


Seek neutral outside opinion[edit]

1) All editors on Macedonia-related articles are directed to get the advice of neutral parties via means such as outside opinions and Geopolitical ethnic and religious conflicts noticeboard (WP:ECCN), especially since there are significant problems in reaching consensus.

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Scope of remedies[edit]

2.1) The remedies in this case shall apply to any disagreement among editors concerning the proper use or designation of the names "Macedonia", "Republic of Macedonia", "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia", or any similar or related reference in any article in Wikipedia.

Passed 13 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

All related articles under 1RR whenever the dispute over naming is concerned [edit]

3.1) All articles related to Macedonia (defined as any article that could be reasonably construed as being related to Macedonia, Macedonia nationalism, Greece related articles that mention Macedonia, and other articles in which how Macedonia will be referred to is an issue) fall under 1RR whenever the dispute over naming is concerned. Editors enforcing a case where a binding #Stalemate resolution has been found are exempt from 1RR.

Passed 13 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Tagging articles[edit]

4) As there are hundreds of articles potentially subject to the remedies contained in this decision, it is up to the community to tag the talk pages and edit notices of the articles and to decide how to go about that. Code for a template on talk pages that can be used for that is here: {{Consensus|This article is currently subject to '''[[Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Macedonia 2#Remedies|1RR]]''', as laid out in the final decision of the "Macedonia 2" arbitration case. If you are a new editor, or an editor unfamiliar with the situation, please follow the guidelines laid out in the above link. If you are unsure if your edit is appropriate, discuss it on this talk page first.}} Similar edit notice wording should be used.

Passed 13 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Uninvolved administrators[edit]

5) For the purpose of imposing sanctions under the provisions of this case, an administrator will be considered "uninvolved" if he or she has not previously participated in any content disputes on articles in the area of conflict and is not mentioned by name in the Arbitration Committee decision in this case. Enforcing the provisions of this decision or the earlier decision in the first Macedonia arbitration will not be considered to be participation in a dispute. Any doubt regarding whether an administrator qualifies under this definition is to be treated as any other appeal of discretionary sanctions.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Stalemate resolution[edit]

6) When the net effect of blocs of editors with a shared agenda disrupts the achievement of consensus over, and/or negates the application of, Wikipedia policy to the point that it is harmful to the encyclopedia, and appropriate steps of the dispute resolution process have been unsuccessful, the community should designate a neutral uninvolved administrator, or group of administrators, agreeable to all sides of the dispute, which should review the situation and resolve it by applying Wikipedia policy. All sides should faithfully adhere to this decision. Any uninvolved administrator, or group of administrators, including those who made the binding decision, may enforce the decision. Since consensus and policy can change, these binding decisions may be reviewed at appropriate times by that same administrator(s), or other uninvolved administrators. If the community is unable to find an administrator, or group of administrators, to address the situation, it may request that the Arbitration Committee appoint one. WP:GAME-ing a situation to head towards stalemate resolution will be highly frowned upon.

Passed 7 to 5 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Avg banned for one year[edit]

7.1) Avg is banned from the English Wikipedia for one year.

Passed 9 to 5 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Avg topic-banned indefinitely[edit]

8.1) Avg is indefinitely topic-banned from Macedonia-related articles and their talk pages, as defined in All related articles under 1RR.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Kekrops topic-banned indefinitely[edit]

9.1) ΚΕΚΡΩΨ (Kekrops) is indefinitely banned from Macedonia-related articles and their talk pages, as defined in All related articles under 1RR.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Kekrops banned for one year[edit]

10.1) ΚΕΚΡΩΨ (Kekrops) is banned from the English Wikipedia for one year.

Passed 12 to 2 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Reaper7 banned for six months[edit]

11) Reaper7 is banned from the English Wikipedia for six months.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Reaper7 topic-banned for one year[edit]

12) Reaper7 is topic-banned from Macedonia-related articles and their talk pages, as defined in All related articles under 1RR, for one year.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Nick ts admonished[edit]

13) Nick ts is admonished for edit warring.

Passed 8 to 5 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Alfadog777 admonished[edit]

14) Alfadog777 is admonished for edit warring.

Passed 9 to 4 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

SQRT5P1D2 topic-banned for one year[edit]

15.2) SQRT5P1D2 is topic-banned from Macedonia-related articles and their talk pages, as defined in All related articles under 1RR for one year.

Passed 11 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

John Carter admonished[edit]

17) John Carter is admonished for disruption and incivility.

Passed 9 to 0 (with 5 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Taivo admonished[edit]

18) Taivo is admonished for releasing private correspondence.

Passed 10 to 3 (with 1 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO admonished[edit]

19) ChrisO (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) is strongly admonished for changing a protected template and moving a protected article in disputes in which he was heavily involved as an editor without obtaining consensus.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO desysopped[edit]

20) ChrisO (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) has been admonished or made subject to restrictions in the course of three prior arbitration proceedings by the Arbitration Committee: Israeli apartheid case, September 2006 for abuse of administrator tools; Kosovo case, October 2006 for edit warring and rollback abuse; Scientology case, May 2009 for WP:BLP violations and inappropriate sysop actions. Combined with actions in this case, this is a long-term pattern. ChrisO is desysopped as a result. ChrisO may obtain the tools back via the usual means or by request to the Arbitration Committee.

Passed 9 to 3 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise admonished[edit]

22) Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) is strongly admonished for displaying a long pattern of incivil, rude, offensive, and insulting behavior towards other editors and failure to address the community's concerns in this regard. This is inappropriate for any editor, but especially for an administrator.

Passed 12 to 0 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise restricted[edit]

24) Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) is subject to an editing restriction for one year. Should he make any edits which are judged by an administrator to be uncivil, personal attacks, or assumptions of bad faith, he may be briefly blocked, up to a week in the event of repeated violations. After 5 blocks, the maximum block shall increase to one month. All blocks are to be logged at #Log of blocks and bans.

Passed 8 to 2 (with 3 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Future Perfect at Sunrise temporarily desysopped[edit]

25.3) Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) is desysopped for three months as a consequence of poor user conduct and misuse of administrative tools. After three months, his administrator access will be automatically restored.

Upon regaining his administrator access, Future Perfect at Sunrise will not be allowed to use administrative tools in topical areas relating to Greece and Macedonia, or in relation to editors involved in that topical area. Should Future Perfect at Sunrise violate this restriction, the Arbitration Committee may remove his administrator access (either temporarily or permanently), or alter the restriction.

Passed 7 to 2 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)
Superseded by motion on 16:37, 19 June 2011 (UTC)

Single-purpose accounts advised[edit]

26) Single-purpose accounts are strongly advised to edit in accordance with WP:SPA and other Wikipedia policies. Diversifying one's topics of interest is also encouraged.

Passed 13 to 0 (with 1 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Tighten the abuse filter[edit]

28) Abuse filter 119, as currently configured, logs all changes involving the word "Macedonia" but does not block any edits. The community is strongly advised to consider adding a new abuse filter criterion; any instances of changing the word "Macedonia" to "FYROM" (the five-letter acronym, not the full phrase) shall be prevented.

Passed 8 to 4 (with 2 abstentions) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Disputed article movement/renaming injunction extension[edit]

29) No Macedonia-related article, as defined in #All related articles under 1RR, shall be moved/renamed until after the community comes to a solution for the naming dispute. If any unauthorized move does occur, any uninvolved administrator may expeditiously revert it.

Passed 14 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Establishing consensus on names[edit]

29.1.1) Within seven days of the closure of this case, a discussion is to be opened to consider the preferred current and historical names for the four entities known as Macedonia. The discussion will end one month after it is opened. Prior to the discussion ending, the Arbitration Committee will designate a panel of three uninvolved administrators who will assess the consensus developed during the discussion, and report the results of their assessment within one week of the end of the discussion. The results will then be appended onto this case, and the consensus as assessed by the panel shall be enforceable as if it were a naming convention.

In assessing the consensus, the panel is instructed to disregard any opinion which does not provide a clear and reasonable rationale explained by reference to the principles of naming conventions and of disambiguation, or which is inconsistent with the principles of the neutral point of view policy or the reliable sources guideline.

Passed 11 to 2 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Administrative supervision[edit]

30) An administrator, X, subject to administrative supervision is required to find another administrator in good standing who is willing to supervise their administrative actions. The choice of supervising administrator is subject to approval by the Committee. X is encouraged to seek a supervising administrator outside their normal areas of editing and administrative tool use. Should X refuse to seek out an administrative supervisor, they will be summarily desysopped.

For a period of six months after their supervising administrator is approved by the Committee, X is permitted to use their administrative tools only as approved by the supervising administrator. The supervising administrator may place limits on the topic areas in which tool may be used, the type of tool used, the purpose for which they are used, or any others as they consider necessary. Should X refuse to comply with these limits, they will be summarily desysopped.

During this time, the supervising administrator is asked to assist X in training to use the tools in a manner that complies with all relevant policies and benefits the project, and to conduct themselves in a manner appropriate for an administrator.

At the end of the six-month period, the supervising administrator will make a recommendation to the Committee regarding X's readiness to use the tools correctly and to conduct themselves appropriately without supervision. Based on this recommendation, the Committee will either allow X to continue as an administrator without further supervision; require that X undergo further supervision; or summarily desysop X.

Passed 9 to 5 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

ChrisO's administrator status 2[edit]

31) The Committee takes note that ChrisO has resigned his administrator status while this case was pending. Any request by ChrisO for restoration of adminship privileges will require either a new request for adminship or the approval of this Committee. ChrisO is urged to give careful consideration to the principles expressed in this decision in his future editing, and especially if he reattains adminship at a future date. ChrisO may retain his rollback rights.

Passed 11 to 0 (with 1 abstention) at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


Enforcement of 1RR by block[edit]

1) Blocks for violation of 1RR related to this arbitration may be issued after 1 warning for up to 1 week for first offense, up to 1 month after the first 1 week block, up to 6 months after the first 1 month block, and then indefinite blocks and ban options may be considered. All blocks and bans are to be logged at #Log of blocks and bans.

Passed 12 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Discretionary sanctions[edit]

2.1) All articles involved in this conflict remain subject to discretionary sanctions under the terms of the Macedonia case "WP:ARBMAC". Such sanctions may be appealed in accordance with the ARBMAC discretionary appeals process.

Passed 12 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Community review[edit]

4) Topic bans and other measures imposed by administrators pursuant to the enforcement provisions of this case are open to community review. The community is free to modify sanctions, such as extending a topic ban or replacing a topic ban with mentoring and editing restrictions.

Passed 12 to 0 at 21:29, 11 June 2009 (UTC)


Motion (June 2011)[edit]

1) By motion voted upon at Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Amendment:

Remedy 25.3 of Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Macedonia 2 ("Future Perfect at Sunrise temporarily desysopped") is lifted, effective immediately. Future Perfect at Sunrise (talk · contribs · blocks · protections · deletions · page moves · rights · RfA) is reminded to abide by the policies guiding administrative acts in areas where one is involved, and to apply particular care to avoid conflict in areas related to Greece and Macedonia.

Passed 11 to 0 on 15:09, 16:40, 19 June 2011 (UTC)

Motion (June 2018)[edit]

The Arbitration Committee clarifies that Wikipedia:Naming conventions (Macedonia) may be modified by an RfC discussion. The discussion must remain open for at least one month after it is opened, and the consensus must be assessed by a panel of three uninvolved contributors. In assessing the consensus, the panel is instructed to disregard any opinion which does not provide a clear and reasonable rationale explained by reference to the principles of naming conventions and of disambiguation, or which is inconsistent with the principles of the neutral point of view policy or the reliable sources guideline.

Passed 10 to 0 by motion at 14:30, 17 June 2018 (UTC)

Log of blocks, bans, and restrictions[edit]

Log any block, restriction, ban or extension under any remedy in this decision here. Minimum information includes name of administrator, date and time, what was done and the basis for doing it.