Wikipedia talk:Arbitration Committee/Archive 19

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Motion to modify removal of advanced permissions ArbCom procedure (January 2017)

Original discussion
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

When an account with administrator, bureaucrat, CheckUser and/or oversight permission(s) seriously or repeatedly engages in conduct harmful to the project or contrary to the expectations of advanced permission holders, the Committee may authorize removal of these permissions. If the account has multiple permissions, removal will generally apply to all of them. Nothing in these procedures prevents prevents the Committee from imposing sanctions, such as restrictions on certain uses of the permissions.

Permanent removal

Criteria

This procedure may only be used when there is overwhelming evidence of egregiously unacceptable conduct that makes the examination of patterns of conduct superfluous. Examples include, but are not limited to:

Procedure

Before removing permissions, the permission holder should almost always be given an opportunity to explain their actions through contact on their talk page, by email with the Committee or discussion on one of the Committee's Wikipedia pages

If a satisfactory explanation is not provided and the situation not resolved within a reasonable period of time an arbitrator may propose a motion to remove the permission(s). The motion shall be proposed at the most appropriate location, such as in response to a clarification request, a standalone motion or in private if required.

If a majority of active, non-recused arbitrators support it, the motion shall be enacted by posting a request to remove the permission(s) at the bureaucrats' noticeboard (an arbitrator or clerk may remove the permission themselves) or the Meta-Wiki permissions page. The text of the motion is also to be posted to the user's talk page and the Committee's noticeboard.

If requested by the permission holder, or if at least three arbitrators support it, arbitration proceedings will be opened to examine the removal of permissions.

The motion to remove the permission(s) will specify how they can be reinstated. Generally, the user will need to reapply for the permission by a new request for adminship or bureaucrat or appointment as a CheckUser/Oversighter by the Committee.

Interim removal in emergencies

Compromised account

If an account with any of the permissions listed above appears to be compromised the Stewards should be alerted and asked to lock the account to prevent further damage to the project. The procedure outlined below applies to the return of permission(s).

Other emergencies

If an account with any of the permissions listed above is actively using advanced permissions to cause harm in a rapid or apparently planned fashion or multiple accounts are actively wheel-warring and blocks have not worked any of the following processes may be used to remove the permission(s).

Bureaucrat action

In an emergency, English Wikipedia bureaucrats may temporarily remove the administrator permission without the authorisation of the Committee. If a bureaucrat determines that an interim emergency removal of the administrator permission is required, they must:

  1. Note on the user rights management page the reason for removal and include a link to this procedure;
  2. Leave a message on the user's talk page and the Bureaucrats' noticeboard indicating the reason for removal, link to this procedure, and ask the user to contact the Committee;
  3. File a new case request and include in their statement the username of the account in question and detailed information describing the reason for the interim removal. If the interim removal was based entirely on private information, this step will be skipped and the bureaucrat will email the Committee.
Committee action
  1. An arbitrator will send a message to arbcom-l (a) stating the name of the account, (b) briefly describing the issue and providing examples of inappropriate conduct, and (c) specifying why interim emergency removal is required.
  2. A request for removal of permissions is approved once at least three arbitrators have indicated their support and no arbitrators have opposed emergency removal.
  3. Once removal has been approved, an arbitrator will (a) directly request removal from a bureaucrat or steward as appropriate, (b) make a formal statement on the bureaucrats' noticeboard or Meta-Wiki permissions page to confirm that the request is based on the authority of the Committee, and (c) post a notice to the Committee's noticeboard and the user's talk page, including a brief explanation of the reason for removal and the names of the arbitrators who voted on it.
Steward action

These procedures do not constrain the authority of the Wikimedia Stewards to undertake emergency removal of permissions (including the administrator permission) pursuant to the global rights policy and other relevant policies.

Review and return of permission(s)

The full Committee will review the removal of permissions and determine any further action to be taken. This action includes reinstating the permission(s), making the interim removal permanent for one or more of the user's permissions or applying further sanctions.

Removal is protective, intended to prevent harm to the encyclopedia while investigations take place, and the permissions will normally be reinstated once a satisfactory explanation is provided or the issues are resolved. If requested by the advanced permission holder or if the Committee wishes, arbitration proceedings (such as a full case) will be opened to examine the removal of permissions and any surrounding circumstances.
For this motion there are 12 active arbitrators. With 0 arbitrators abstaining, 7 support or oppose votes are a majority.
Support
Salvio Let's talk about it! 15:50, 11 October 2016 (UTC)Clerk note: This arbitrator's term has expired. Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 00:20, 1 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  1. Thank you to everyone for their comments on this proposal. I feel that we're at a point where we can move forward with approving this change. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 08:55, 17 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oppose
  1. On concerns of forcing a crat to open a case, act first instead of discuss first, and circumstances of a mandated review. I will expand as requested, though highlights are on the review page I created. -- Amanda (aka DQ) 05:33, 22 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Too much ink has been spilled --In actu (Guerillero) | My Talk 14:11, 19 December 2016 (UTC)Clerk note: This arbitrator's term has expired. Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 00:20, 1 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Abstain

Discussion by arbitrators

  • @DeltaQuad: Regarding forcing the crat to open a case, I'd point out that ArbCom would likely be the only body authorised to give the right back (since the reason for removal would almost certainly be controversial, hence user a cloud) discounting a new RfA. Decratting could occur whether or not a case request was filed. As well as reviewing whether to give the right back or not, yes it also checks for abuse. I assume you mean by "the community takes it up" that a community member files a case? Since there's no current provision for the community to decrat or return the permission without a full RfA/RfB/ArbCom decision, having the crat file a case put the discussion where the people with the authority to do something can, saves time and angst (of waiting for someone to file) and, if nothing else, saves time since we'll almost definitely have to look at it anyway.
Per community policy (which ArbCom cannot overrule) the stewards cannot act except in "emergency situations where local users are unable or unavailable to act". The global page says "except in an emergency or when action across multiple projects is needed, stewards generally do not exercise their powers in a project that has local users with the required rights". If "there is aggressive abuse of admin tools on 2 or more other projects" (your point) then the stewards are already empowered to do whatever they need to do and this procedure let's them do that (I'd guess they'd lock the account for cross-wiki abuse, then let local projects deal with it from there).
Regarding the Committee action for permanent removal, I don't get what you mean by "individual arbitrator can now initiate this procedure without contacting other arbs in any form" (emphasis added), the current procedure says that the initiating arbitrator (single) contacts the account before contacting the rest of the Committee, the proposal doesn't specify whether an individual arb contacts the user first or the Committee first. I won't go into in detail (and I think I have done so already, either below or on the list) unless someone asks, but I can absolutely see situations where an arb (individual) contacts the user before the Committee and vice versa. A number of comments here say the procedure is already too long, is adding text about this really solving a problem or possibly creating one...? Having said that, I don't mind either way, if the majority of arbs want it to specify that the contacting the Committee comes first then I'm fine with that.
As I said below (somewhere) "normal arbitration proceedings" gives options for a public or private case, "case" implies public only. Regarding being able to force a case, I agree that we shouldn't make a special rule for this (and it should be normal). However comments in the mailing list discussion indicated that a number of arbs wanted there to be a way for the person whose permission(s) had been removed can have it reviewed. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:54, 22 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I've got a couple of other concerns before I could support this.
In the permanent removal section the motion says "active, non-recused arbitrators". In the "Review and return of permission(s)" section, which presumably applies only to interim removals, the motion says "full committee". I know we had a problem recently with interpreting a statement a bit like that, I think both sections should say "active, non-recused arbitrators".
I would also like to see a deadline for review of interim removal. Eg "Within a month after the removal of permissions the committee will initiate a review..." Doug Weller talk 16:27, 23 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I don't see the point of opening a case when it's a compromised account, since we usually handle that by motion. For other reasons, it's a good idea DGG ( talk ) 18:46, 4 December 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Community comments

  • If an arbitrator is also a bureaucrat, he'd thus have two choices: do it right away and THEN inform ArbCom, or put it to an ArbCom vote and only desysop after a net four vote. This also gives the impression of putting 'crats judgement above Arbitrators.  · Salvidrim! ·  16:01, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I don't think that's much of an issue. Crats are specifically selected to be boring and not go rouge. We haven't had a crat boldly do something controversial like that since 2004 or 2005. The WordsmithTalk to me 17:06, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • One would expect "Bureaucrat action" to occur in situations that are more urgent than allows for "Committee action". I think the policy should say that - i.e. that bureaucrats should only take action if they judge the situation to be too urgent to follow the procedure under "Committee action". We can perhaps contrast the three scenarios in which this is said to apply:
    (a)/(b)"appears to be obviously compromised" or "is intentionally and actively using advanced permissions to cause harm in a rapid or apparently planned fashion" - likely to go down the "Bureaucrat action" route. And I suspect a non-bureaucrat Arb would just flag a bureaucrat or steward to do the emergency desysop based on their own judgment. Why wait for three other Arbs, and then have to find a bureaucrat or steward to do the desysop?
    (c) "wheel-warring and blocks have not worked" - may vary in urgency depending on where the wheel war is happening, the speed of the wheel war, and how much harm it is causing. May not require immediate action.
    WJBscribe (talk) 17:22, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • @WJBscribe: Yeah that's how I look at - actions by crats would generally be done when urgency is important and there isn't time for the Committee to act. Committee action would be in cases where the reasons are private or there is a little more time (such as wheel warring). Personally, I'd actually prefer to make it less prescriptive in this area (and just leave the definition of an "emergency" up to discretion, than more prescriptive so that it can better cover the situations we don't think of now. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 09:33, 13 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Regarding Bureaucrat emergency actions, I strongly suggest that a similar posting requirement to WP:BN be required as is for committee actions, to have a central communication that an action has taken place and referring follow up to the case opened (or in the event of private information that follow up is to the arbcom mailing list). — xaosflux Talk 17:36, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Comment - the section on emergency removal is a bit outdated. While removing permissions from compromised accounts and then blocking them does stop the outward abuse, it doesn't do anything to prevent the abuser from going into the account preferences and changing the password/email so that the holder of the account can no longer recover it. The current best practices for stewards when it comes to dealing with compromised accounts are as follows:
    1. Lock the account. This logs the person out, and prevents them from logging in again anywhere on Wikimedia. This means that there is no way for the potential attacker to change any of the user information if they haven't already, and because they cannot log in there is no need to remove permissions at this point.
    2. Work with local users to investigate whether or not the account was compromised through CheckUser and through doing our best to contact the account owner.
    3. Ultimately, it's up to the local community to decide whether or not the account was actually compromised. For the final step of deciding whether or not to remove permissions, it's not up to us since there is no longer an emergency, though of course we will remove permissions for groups that local 'crats can't remove.
So I would propose the following workflow for dealing with accounts suspected of being compromised: Identify --> contact stewards through IRC, email or on Meta-Wiki --> they will work with local users to resolve the problem. This way can lead to the abuse being stopped faster, because there is always at least one steward around rather than a coin toss whether a 'crat is here, and can help keep account information and control safe. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 18:38, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Interesting point re compromised accounts changing the email address. Should we ask for mediawiki to be amended such that if necessary Arbcom or checkusers can authorise emailing an account recovery email to earlier addresses?
That might be useful for cases where the account information has already been changed, but it would be pretty hard to tell which email is the correct one without revealing too much information. All of this would need to be cleared by Legal, and I'm not sure that it would be possible given what information is currently stored. I also don't think it's needed: instead of worrying about trying to resolve a global account issue at the local level, just bounce it up to the people who are elected by the global community to specifically deal with cases like this. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 00:00, 19 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • In my mind, this text needs a serious shortening. Otherwise, Ajraddatz's suggestion seems fairly reasonable. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 18:51, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The procedures for permanent removal include this sentence: "The motion is to be proposed as the most appropriate location, such as in response to a clarification request, a standalone motion or in private if required." (Trivial: "as... location" should be "at".) I can easily imagine situations where private disposition of emergency removals is necessary, but I have some concerns about "in private if required" for the kinds of egregiously obvious problems that would result in permanent actions. I can understand the need to omit private information for situations involving checkuser or oversight, but such situations usually can still be discussed on-site with the omission of the private information. In most other cases where permanent removal is required, there will already be an on-site record that the community has seen. Therefore, I think that over-reliance on private discussion reduces community confidence in the Committee. At a minimum, "if required" needs some definition or limitation. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:26, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Minor copyediting suggestion: for clarity, I suggest changing the sentence "The motion to remove the permission(s) is to specify how they can be reinstated." to "The motion to remove the permission(s) must specify how it can be reinstated." isaacl (talk) 21:09, 10 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Thanks for modifying the sentence in question. In addition, can "The motion shall be proposed as the most appropriate location" be modified to something like "The motion shall be proposed in the most appropriate location"? isaacl (talk) 12:57, 13 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Similar to Isaacl above, I think the use of "is to" in this motion is ambiguous. It can either mean a purpose or a command, particularly "The motion to remove the permission(s) is to specify how they can be reinstated". I think all parts of the motion use "is to" in the command sense, so we should replace "is to" with "shall". Other than that, the proposed procedures don't differ significantly from existing procedures but give more elegant names to things, so I can support it. Deryck C. 09:46, 11 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The proposed modified procedure is too long, too wordy, and needs a good bit of copy editing. Substantively, I'm not sure it clarifies much for me. It would be helpful to know what the arbitrators think has changed as well as what is new.--Bbb23 (talk) 12:30, 13 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • DeltaQuad and Callanecc, I've read Amanda's analysis and Callanecc's response. In my present mental state (no sleep), I couldn't get my brain around either. Perhaps I'll try again later this weekend or early next week. It doesn't help that I'm not and never have been an arbitrator and am not privy to current or previous discussions about this topic. In the interim, I've done the little I can do that doesn't require a great deal of thought: I've created User:Bbb23/Modified removal of advanced permissions, which is an edited version of the proposal to remove excess verbiage and make other copy edits. Even those of us who are not lawyers write too much like lawyers, and I tried to cut down on the legalese without losing what I thought was Callanecc's intent.--Bbb23 (talk) 10:49, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The temporary removal section doesn't obviously contain provision for a situation such as that which happened when the arbcom archives were leaked a few years ago. One possible source for the leak was that an arbitrator's account had been compromised, but one arbitrator could not be immediately contacted to determine whether they were in control of their account or not - as a preventative measure the account was locked and permissions removed, despite there being nothing in the contributions or logged actions to suggest it had been compromised (it turned out their account was not compromised and permissions were restored). Thryduulf (talk) 23:42, 13 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Permanent removal, under criterion 2, is for "Serious or repeated breaches in basic policies." Can't it be argued that the recent TRM case could then have been bypassed by ArbCom finding repeated breaches of the civility policy? It's not an approach in line with the implied severity of the outing policy example, but all it says is "basic policies", the meaning of which is open to interpretation. Seems a potential issue to me. EdChem (talk) 06:48, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • @DeltaQuad: Re "The stewards here are given a "you can do this" card, but directs them to do so under a poorly worded policy page or "other global policy"...I'm no expert in global policy, but i'm pretty sure a global lock is about all that the can do. I don't like the idea of this brushing stewards out of this, as Arbs and Crats aren't always around at convenient times, and maybe should be put under the same authority as crats." - stewards still retain the ability to do emergency desysops on all wikis, including large wikis such as the English Wikipedia, without ArbCom's approval. One case besides a compromised account would be repeated wheel warring (think several times within minutes). This provision has not been used in several years on enwiki (and I can't think of any recent cases on any large wikis) but it is still there, in case of emergency. I can think of a few other unique cases that I won't mention onwiki, but I'm sure are discussed in the arbcom-l archives somewhere. --Rschen7754 07:03, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    We desysopped someone on a small-sized Wikipedia back in March, and were considering an emergency desysop to enforce the ToU on a medium-sized wiki somewhat recently. So yes, stewards do retain the technical ability and community mandate to desysop in cases of emergency or abuse, though of course the matter is put to the community after that. As I was saying above though, in most recent cases we lock the account instead to do fact-finding. A somewhat recent example of this happened with a now-arb here back in 2013. Emergency desysopping is really only useful when we are 100% sure that the account is not compromised, and in practice this only happens on smaller wikis with less-well-vetted admins these days. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 07:20, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Regarding the place of stewards, the enwiki policy (which ArbCom can't change/overrule) says In emergency situations where local users are unable or unavailable to act..., stewards are asked to use their global rights to protect the best interests of Wikipedia (WP:GRP#Stewards) and the global Stewards policy says If there are any doubts as to whether or not an action should be performed, stewards should not act unless it is an emergency situation requiring immediate action or there are no active local users to do it (which the local policy pretty much reflects). Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 07:34, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • On a quick read, this seems to add a lot more requirements on bureaucrats, who previously would simply have acted to remove the permission and notify Arbcom, and also makes it much more complex to notify bureaucrats. IRC, email to the 'crat list, or personal direct contact with a bureaucrat all seem to be taken off the table, which is a bit absurd if the situation is time-sensitive. I'd rather see the process be simplified rather than made more complex. Incidentally, what constitutes "basic policies"? I know from my time on Arbcom that it was entirely possible to violate one policy by upholding another because we have so many intertwining policies, and WP:5 (which I'd guess is what you might be suggesting are basic policies) is a guideline and has been deliberately kept at the guideline level over multiple community discussions. Risker (talk) 03:14, 16 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • It's not a matter of more requirements it's that there are now requirements. As can be seen from the thread on BN when those two admin accounts were compromised the initial email was to email ArbCom for a desysop rather than do it themselves, even when the crat did desysop them they knew there was a possibility of sanctions against them. I'm not sure what you mean by those opinions being taken off the table, they are still ways to let a crat know that an account has been compromised. As happened last time, resysoping happened (and will happen under this procedure) when ArbCom gave the go ahead. Outing is probably around the level of basic we're talking about (were talking things like privacy, outing, egregious harassment) about as far as it's going to go, given that is has to be "egregiously unacceptable conduct". Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 06:02, 16 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • Another possible scenario is mental health concerns, without going into details. --Rschen7754 07:44, 16 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
First, I suggest removing the redundant second consecutive "prevents" in the third sentence of the proposal. Second, I would ask for some clarification regarding the extent of the "advanced permissions" which would be removed under the circumstances discussed. Would those "advanced permissions" also include, for instance, autoconfirmed and autopatrolled? This might be most relevant in cases where, like in a recent AE request, a person might be experiencing some mental health issue or experiencing some form of mental impairment by medications required in the short term, like before a surgery. John Carter (talk) 16:37, 14 December 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Desysop motion analysis from DeltaQuad

@Bbb23 and DeltaQuad: Some comments on the analysis:
  1. The sentence about not limiting other options was added as, during discussion on the list, an arb (can't remember who) expressed concern that the procedure (without this) limited the Committee from imposing other sanctions by motion.
  2. This procedure doesn't remove the possibility of vote-by-proxy (using any means) they just don't outright say it. Part of the reason for this is that vote-by-proxy has been accepted for other things so stating that it's specifically allowed implies that it isn't other times.
  3. Regarding four net, the intention was to standardise it with WP:AC/P#Calculation of votes, however I've no issue with changing it back to three support and no dissenting opinions. Alternatively, we could change it to one arbl however I'm not sure how that would be taken, given there's nothing else like this that a single arb can do.
  4. Regarding BN vs Meta, perhaps Ajraddatz could give us some more information on it. But I was under the impression that the stewards won't act when local crats are able to, unless it's an emergency. So while opinions both are there, the arb posting it would use BN for desysops (which is standard practice). Not having that written in there allows for situations we haven't thought of, the discretion of individual arbs and makes it less wordier.
  5. I'd prefer that the names of supporters and opposers are always announced publicly (unless there are very good reasons not to, e.g. strong privacy/legal issues), but that's not the position of the rest of the Committee.
  6. Whenever a crat desysops someone (or anyone gets desysoped anyway) there are going to be people talking about it. I'd prefer that that happens at ARC where there are stronger controls on civility and personal attacks (etc), plus it ensures that the whole Committee reviews the situation. This also goes to ensuring that every removal of permissions is reviewed by the Committee, which is one of the big things in the Committee's discussions.
  7. It does not really limit the scope of the crat's since they currently have no scope in this area. We can't think of every situation, but when we're delegating the authority to do something controversial (which the community has historically refused to delegate from the Committee, ie desysoping) it should be restrictive.
  8. Regarding the global policy referral for stewards, this gives them pretty wide latitude to do whatever they need to do, and in any case, the Committee can't override this piece of community policy (which reflects the global steward policy).
  9. Regarding one crat vs one arb, see third dot point.
  10. The Committee is discussing whether to handball compromised accounts straight to stewards or add contacting them to the current procedure.
  11. The point of introducing a criteria which is more restrictive than the current version, is that there have been a number of comments both from arbs and others the Committee should generally lean away from desysop-by-motion and instead towards opening a case (see also "summary proceedings" at WP:ARBPOL#Forms of proceeding). This tries to limit those situations, while also not being too restrictive as to prevent the Committee acting. There were originally more dot point examples however these where removed in discussion with the rest of the Committee as instances where a full case could be opened. There is a bit there which expressly states that the list is not restrictive but instead just suggestions.
  12. I've no issue with adding a note that it should be very rare for the Committee not to contact the permission holder, but I feel that doing so probably isn't needed.
  13. An individual arbitrator started the process by themselves without consultation in the old/current procedure. The new procedure doesn't specify how it starts, and I don't mind that really. Each year's Committee is different, some work by discussion first (as this year's does) some work by action then discussion, I don't really see a strong need to specify that discussion is required first.
  14. I agree that a case should be accepted as normal (with votes to accept) but that's not the opinion of other arbs (Opabinia regalis might like to comment on this?). Reason being to try and avoid a situation where the same people who desysoped 'review' the situation by declining to actually review (i.e. a case) the situation.
  15. "normal arbitration proceedings" includes a private discussion / review on ArbWiki; a "case" strongly implies a standard public one.
  16. Cross posting to AN (and WT:ACN) is covered in the clerks' procedures so even if an arb doesn't do it (although it is standard practice) a clerk would do it.
I imagine these comments are going to be difficult to respond to, so if anyone can think of a better way to do so, please share. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 07:27, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Regarding BN versus stewards; it's really a question of urgency. If sysop tools are actively being used to cause harm to the project, stewards can act. Stewards are in part selected on the basis of timezone coverage and availability, which isn't a concern for local crats (nor should it be), so if ArbCom is faced with needing to desysop immediately it would be best to refer to us. For sysop tools being removed by Committee motion after the fact, that is a case for local bureaucrats.
Regarding compromised accounts, I don't think it would be worth tossing the entire case to us - as I suggested in my earlier post, the only thing that we really do alone is lock the account or remove permissions depending on the case, before sending it back to the local community. We lack knowledge of the situation and methods of contacting the user in question, as well as more practical tools like using CheckUser here for accounts which are primarily active here. But I think it is worth informing stewards, either to begin with or early on, so the initial technical actions can be done. After that, the issue can be resolved locally, and then we can be informed of the result so the account can be unlocked, permissions removed/restored, etc. So, I'll modify my suggested workflow to: suspect an account of being compromised --> contact ArbCom or stewards --> both groups will contact the other and proceed with resolving the situation. The only benefit to initiating the process with the stewards is the availability component, which might be enough of a consideration to have it as "option 1", though I imagine we'd be contacted very quickly in such a situation anyway. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 07:48, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I was thinking of adding step to the Committee (as part of step 1 or 3) and crat (between steps 2 & 3) actions to let the stewards know if they suspect the account has been compromised, how does that sound? Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 07:53, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
At that point it would be useful for investigating the implications for the user's global account (i.e. permissions on other projects, etc), but it misses out on resolving the situation with the least possible actions taken. If the account is suspected of being compromised, locking it deals with all the effort of desysopping and blocking in a fraction of the time while keeping the account secure. If the path flows through local processes first, then there is added time spent on wheel warring, trying to contact local users which may or may not be around, etc. So it would be useful in the Committee step 1, but perhaps also as a replacement to the bureaucrat step 1. For other types of emergencies, such as when an admin who has long disliked one user goes ahead and blocks them and starts reverting all their edits, locking isn't needed. But it's a good first step in situations where the account is potentially compromised. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 08:01, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My consideration with still having a local desysop occur is a situation like this, perhaps you could offer some insight into about the stewards would handle it (policy-wise). An admin account (which is active on other projects) is locked after someone email the stewards alerting them to it (the account wasn't blocked and it wasn't desysoped) because they are thought to be compromised after they deleted a highly viewed page or blocked someone for no reason (and no explanation). They emailed the stewards and it was established (the same day) that it wasn't a compromised and they wanted to return to editing the other projects all also edit. Would a steward then unlocks the account (it's no longer compromised so that reason doesn't exist anymore)? Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:12, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I can't provide you with much of a policy perspective; stewards have very few policies to begin with, instead operating mostly by best practices, and all existing restrictions are lifted in cases of emergency like this. In the case you describe, we would lock the account and contact ArbCom/other local users for context and contacting the user in question. At this point, ArbCom could initiate any action in terms of a desysop motion and have it carried out, by local bureaucrats or stewards if none were around. Once it was established that the account was in the right hands, we would unlock, but first making sure that any local restrictions required were in place on all effected projects (desysopping and potentially blocking being the main ones here). Now, it's just my opinion that stewards are better equipped to deal with these situations. Giving bureaucrats the ability to intervene won't impede our ability to help and take action as needed, and it makes sense to give them the mandate in case they ever need it. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 19:07, 15 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks Ajraddatz, the Committee is discussing it. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 05:56, 16 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Just on Callanecc's point 14 above: one concern I've always had about this process is that summary removal of permissions by arbcom is only practically appealable back to arbcom, so the more of us are involved in the original decision, the less confident the affected person would be in having a fair review. My original suggestion was that arbs participating in an "interim" decision recuse from any subsequent case and present the evidence on which they based the decision. However, that's a recipe for cases decided by a small number of people, once other recusals, inactivity, and attrition are accounted for. Opabinia regalis (talk) 07:20, 16 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have concerns about this still. There are definitely circumstances as Brad mentioned below that would be as someone as recently called our actions, 'inane'. Also, if the Committee originally intends to let the desysop stand, is there really a point in taking it to full case? That would fall under not getting a fair review either, and gives them additional false hope, stress, and scrutiny. This is not a place where WP:ROPE should be applied. -- Amanda (aka DQ) 05:29, 22 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This is a reasonable point above. As a possible, possibly unduly convoluted variant, maybe instead what the arbs might do is have a procedure where they punt the matter over to AE, indicating specifically that the matter in question involves loss of user rights? That might be done either as a standalone single step or as a first step in the process, with confirmation by the seated arbs as the possible second step in a multi-step review. John Carter (talk) 16:45, 14 December 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Without flyspecking every word of the proposals—and without undue confidence that it's possible, even in theory, to anticipate every possible unusual circumstance that might come along—I have two comments at this time, one purely wording-related and one substantive:

  • In differentiating between interim and longer-term removal of permissions, I am hesitant to endorse use of the phrase "permanent removal of permissions." I understand that this means "permanent unless overturned," as opposed to "explicitly interim." Even so, we know from experience that it creates confusion to describe something as a "permanent removal of permissions" when that same removal is subject to the proviso that "If requested by the permission holder, or if at least three arbitrators support it, arbitration proceedings will be opened to examine the removal of permissions." So I would suggest replacing the word permanent, although I must admit that having thought about this for a week I haven't come up with a good suggestion for what to replace it with.
  • My second comment arises from the same provision that following a "permanent" removal, the administrator may as a matter of right may open an arbitration proceeding to examine the removal of permissions." If this means that on request a full arbitration case will be opened, then an exception is required for extraordinary circumstances—especially if what is meant is automatically a full on-wiki arbitration case. There have been a couple of instances I can think of which it was, or would have been, a serious mistake to open such a case following an emergency desysopping. One of these is Archtransit, and I'm not going to mention the others here, but I'll be glad to e-mail the Committee if requested to. Our wiki values weigh in favor of transparency and on-wiki discussion, both in fairness to the (ex-)administrator and to the community as a whole, but there can be countervailing considerations as well. Newyorkbrad (talk) 20:00, 17 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • That was our difficulty too. Needs to be a word analogous to "indefinite" for a block. Regarding reviewing the decision to desysop I've now linked arbitration proceedings which includes both full cases and private hearings as required. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 06:27, 18 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • I'm looking through the thesaurus and can't find anything other than permanent and indefinite. Indefinite already has a special meaning here and seems to apply, plus later you go on to explain how the bit can be regained. Either is fine to me, but those do seem to be your choices. Dennis Brown - 10:18, 18 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Maybe 'Full' or 'Complete' removal? The substantive difference is (or should be) 'removal without necessarily requiring further review' versus 'removal with the possibility of requesting further review'. Immediate (because it is obvious and needs doing quickly) vs relatively quickly (because it is not so obvious and not so urgent). The whole text could do with some simplification. There are too many caveats and maybes and 'almost always'. It should be simple, direct and decisive, so no-one can get confused. Carcharoth (talk) 14:51, 18 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • Would it be worthwhile for Carcharoth to try his hand at a simplified version. As a two-time Committee alumnus he should have a good handle on the relevant considerations. (I won't offer to do it, as simplifying things is not necessary my forte, either by reputation or by reality.) Newyorkbrad (talk) 16:58, 18 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        • Sadly, I fear not (and like you I don't intend to offer). Though I thank you for the kind suggestion. There is enough feedback here for the current arbs to work with. Carcharoth (talk) 18:43, 18 October 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • A user that the community elected to be bureaucrat should be given enough trust to use his or her tools properly and only revoke admin status in absolute emergencies where an admin is obviously abusing his or her powers. I agree that the bureaucrat should be required to immediately notify the arbitration committee so they can deal with the matter. I think this policy should go into effect. CLCStudent (talk) 23:07, 5 December 2016 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Suggest closing this

It's been about three months, there has been an intervening election, and the newly appointed committee (if they want to do anything with this at all) will likely revise the proposal significantly. This found little support as written. I sincerely urge Arbcom to simply close the motion, without prejudice to a reconsidered motion at a time when the committee as a whole is likely to support it. Risker (talk) 00:44, 1 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Indeed. Paul August 02:24, 1 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The committee has directed the clerks to close this matter; I'd do so now but I'm half asleep as it is. Thanks, Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 06:43, 1 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Should Arab-Israeli conflict pages be protected pre-emptively?

We've recently had a large-ish number of protection requests for 30/500 protection under ARBPIA3, including a single count of a page that refers to ancient times and now a request to thusly protect all pages in applicable categories. This would entail 30/500 protecting probably hundreds of additional pages, many of whom have not yet become the subject of disputes or edit wars, and I honestly hesitate to earmark them for future conflict by adding pre-emptive protection (which protection policy states should not be done) - a hesitation that I suspect, based by their inaction, to be shared by some of my fellow admins. A concern of mine is whether pre-emptive protection sets a precedent for allowing many pages to be protected that are increasingly tangentially related to the conflict. In particular, pages related more to the path to a peaceful solution in my experience tend to be less in need of protection than those that address confrontational aspects - perhaps such a delineation was intended by ARBPIA3, but it is not necessarily reflected by navigational templates or categories, and could use some clarification. The question boils down to this:

  1. Should pre-emptive protection be applied to all pages that are in categories or on navigational templates relevant to Arab-Israeli conflict, explicitly regardless of whether they have been previously affected by disputes or edit wars, and irrespective of whether the underlying sentiment is peace-building or confrontational? Speaking more broadly,
  2. should ARBPIA3's 30/500 provision be understood as a tool to help admins manage disputes, or a mandate to pre-emptively protect all pages classified in one way or another as touching on the conflict (as defined above)? Thanks.

PS: As I was drafting this, it turns out that conversation on this question has also opened elsewhere. Samsara 08:25, 2 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I would think that pages should only be protected once there's been an issue. I understand there have been a lot of requests, but I don't see how compiling a list of pages that fall under the topic area and preemptively protecting them would be less work than addressing requests individually. GorillaWarfare (talk) 01:43, 3 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks. I think that answers the question. For completeness' sake, I'll mention that the request was to go through relevant categories and protect all pages listed therein. Is there a way we can place a note so that the clarification can be found via the relevant ARBPIA3 section? Thanks. Samsara 01:51, 3 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This is just my personal opinion. If you want a formal response from the Committee you'll need to file a request at WP:ARCA. GorillaWarfare (talk) 02:05, 3 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Well, your opinion matches what was concluded at this AN discussion that was pointed out to me. I'm not sure how much rehashing needs to be done, but it might be a good idea to find a way for this to not become a perennially repeated query. Samsara 02:11, 3 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Arbcom's general prohibition (the 30/500 rule) applies to all I/P pages regardless of whether the EC protection has been applied to them. So you can warn newcomers against editing certain pages regardless of their current protection status. As to the rationale for protection: some admins would not bother to apply protection to every possible page, but rather wait for problems to show up. In my opinion mass protection would not be worth it. It would be a challenging task to identify every page that falls under I/P. There are also pages where certain sections fall under I/P and others don't. At present 436 pages are under EC protection, maybe half of them due to ARBPIA. If this level of protection were applied to all I/P articles there could be more than a thousand. The set of I/P conflict pages is not exhausted by everything under Category:Israeli–Palestinian conflict, which looks like about 600 pages altogether. EdJohnston (talk) 03:22, 3 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Indeed - we've since come up with a more comprehensive list of categories, navigational templates and list articles, but if pre-emptive protection were the goal, one gets onto the slippery slope of, for example, protecting any article about a physical location that's played theatre to some part of the conflict. I'm not sure that "reasonably construed" is a sufficient barrier against such interpretations, so perhaps clearly delineating it as applying only to articles that have become embroiled would be useful. I don't know if I'll have time to field an ARCA proposal along those lines this particular week, but I think the immediate situation can be reasonably considered resolved at this point. With the merit or demerit of a broken record, I'll again suggest in closing that some notice to direct the reader of ARBPIA3 to relevant discussions and opinions on implementation would be good. As I said, if it takes an ARCA then I guess that's what we have to do. Thanks to all who've replied. Samsara 04:33, 3 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Unprotection requests for ARBPIA3

I would like ArbCom to be aware that there have recently been unprotection requests for pages protected under arbcom provisions. I have posted a notice on what I believe to be the appropriate talk page for admins likely to be affected so that they may be aware of the possibility of such requests. We have recently elected a large number of new admins, and RfPP has been under backlog repeatedly over the last few days, which some of them have helped to clear. I trust you'll understand what I am trying to say, including the broader context. Samsara (talk) 14:08, 23 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Please fix the wording of Template:Ds/alert

For about the sixth time over several years I have to urge that the language of Template:Ds/alert be toned down. It is intended as an informative notice about the topical scope of WP:AC/DS to particular topics/cases, and is not a "warning" or "threat", but is almost universally perceived as one. Just now, I've been [to ANI] for delivering Ds/alerts, as if I'm personally responsible for their wording, yet ArbCom does not permit us to edit the wording, and also requires that a Ds/alert be received within 12 months, or DS cannot be applied at all to the party in question. I and others (including admins) believe this is worse-than-pointless WP:BUREAUCRACY. The prior ArbCom said it was going to do another, long-overdue, review of AC/DS but did not. At very least, make these Ds/alerts read like informative notices instead of like dire threats, please. PS: As I've also reported half a dozen times, the template is malfunctional, and presents the panel of ways to check if someone has received a notice, for that particular case in the last year, only when you try to save the template not when you preview it. Yet we are required to do this check.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  16:14, 16 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

PS: Because the notice is perceived almost universally as a threat not a notice, it is totally ineffective. Two recent examples from the same discussion:

  • "Of course I still stand by every word that I wrote here re Dicklyon" [1] Andy Dingley believes he is being challenged on the accuracy of his perceptions of another editor, rather than being notified that he needs to be civil in how he goes about discussing them, must assume good faith, and must provide proof of any allegations he makes. Having him dig in and "stand by every word" the exact opposite of the intended effect of a Ds/alert.
  • "I treated [the Ds/alert] with the contempt it deserves, as I concluded that it was incorrectly posted to my page ..." [2] Exemplo347 does not appear to have actually read the alert, just reacted to it as a "threat" in a big box. His more detailed comments indicate he believes he got an article-specific warning that is not for the article in question, when the alert clearly states it's about ARBATC's DS, which are about WP:AT and WP:MOS discussions "broadly construed", and are not specific to any article subject. Further, he assumes that since the alert did not specifically identify his own diff that it somehow doesn't apply to him, that it's a mis-delivered "warning" for something he didn't do, not a notice of the scope of the DS.

In short, both users have been notified of the DS, as prescribed by ArbCom, but it did not register with them at all, and they will surely be surprised when DS is applied to them if they engage in uncivil verbal aggression toward other editors with whom they're unhappy over title/style matters. These editors' reactions are the norm, not the exception, when it comes to Ds/alerts. The system is badly broken, and has been since its inception. The only improvement of note that has been made to it was the removal, several years ago, of language that said "If your misconduct continues" or something like that, but this has had no effect. Everyone who gets one of these assumes they're being accused of misconduct instead of being notified of a scope fact.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  16:38, 16 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

As, for some unknown reason, I've been pinged here I'll comment. I have no problem with the template as it stands. My problem was with the reason for its application, and I made this objection in a very clear, unambiguous manner on my talk page. I have absolutely no further comment on the matter and I won't be coming back here to read any replies. Regards Exemplo347 (talk) 16:42, 16 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The wording is fine, but your use of it against other editors is abusive.
As is obvious from the ANI thread, Dicklyon has been persistently disruptive by continuing a simplistic imposition of a styleguide over sourced external realities. He has continued this onto new articles, even whilst being discussed at ANI for a TBAN on the same topic.
Your approach here, "I'm right because I have A Scary Template" has no merit to it at all. Please either cut it out or (as you have failed to do) find some reason to support your renaming claims at ANI. Andy Dingley (talk) 16:47, 16 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
ANI is not a forum for renaming, RM is. Which is what I've been saying the entire time. That ANI thread is a content dispute between editors engaged in an increasingly personalized and uncivil style/titles dispute, which is why ARBATC applies. Given that I've explained this 5 times to you guys now, I'll just leave it at that.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  21:34, 16 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Speaking only for myself at this point (the Committee has not discussed it this year), I'd be glad to take a look if anyone would like to suggest a specific improved wording for the DS-notice template. The template needs to communicate in simple terms to both experienced and inexperienced users what DS means (and ideally why DS are in place), without scaring them away from the affected topic-area altogether. However, let's keep this thread free of any more references to specific editors or disputes, or it will become useless and probably have to be closed. Newyorkbrad (talk) 21:43, 16 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

My experience, too, has been that editors receiving the DS respond as though it were a threat. I've looked at the template (for GMO, as that's the one I've had experience with), and I see that it says at the top:
This message contains important information about an administrative situation on Wikipedia. It does not imply any misconduct regarding your own contributions to date.
That's obviously pretty clear about it not being a threat, so I'm asking myself why, nonetheless, it is almost always taken as a threat anyway. So I'll suggest simply making it even more obvious:
This message contains important information about an administrative situation on Wikipedia. It is provided as information only. It does NOT imply any misconduct regarding your own contributions to date.
Hope that helps. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:19, 17 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That might help a little. The appearance of a big warning box is also an issue. If it had a green or blue background, that might also help. A more conversational tone after that part would also be good, instead of the pile of dire pseudo-legalese. E.g., "We all know discussions can become heated from time to time. You might not have been informed of this before, but some topics – including [TOPIC HERE] – have attracted enough conflict that they are subject to expedited administrative action to stop disruption and incivility, known as discretionary sanctions (DS). Since you have been participating in discussions in this topic area, you should be aware that DS apply to it, per [CASE LINK HERE]." Or somethings along these lines.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  07:41, 17 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think a green or blue background would be a good idea. --Tryptofish (talk) 22:17, 17 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I don't think present wording implies a threat, though I can see why (in a tense situation), it would be interpreted thus. Can I point out the obvious, which is that while a threat may not be constructive, a clear explicit reminder/warning is both intended and necessary. Pleading ignorance because the message says 'information only', might well be as unhelful as the present situation. Pincrete (talk) 10:22, 23 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I really do not think these templates are ever given except in tense situations. Although you are correct that the present wording does not imply a threat, human behavior is such that people reading it will read that meaning into it. ("Why is this person giving me this message? It must be because they are getting ready to get me into trouble.") For that matter, I don't think that the wording implies that it's OK to plead ignorance. --Tryptofish (talk) 23:34, 23 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Wording proposal

How about something like this?

Please carefully read this information:

  • This message does not imply any misconduct regarding your own contributions to date. It is instead a standard message to notify contributors about an administrative situation on Wikipedia.
  • You have recently edited the topic (topic). This message is to notify you that discretionary sanctions are authorised for all pages regarding this topic. They were authorised for by the Arbitration Committee, and the Committee's decision is at (case).
  • Before continuing to edit this topic, please familiarise yourself with the discretionary sanctions system. No other action on your part is necessary. Don't hesitate to contact me or another editor if you have any questions.

I feel this has greater clarity than the current message. --Jules (Mrjulesd) 10:48, 24 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

In my personal opinion, the top line and first bullet point do a better job of dealing with the issue than my suggestion did, thanks. I hope the Arbs will consider this approach, along with putting it on a blue or green background. --Tryptofish (talk) 23:18, 24 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I suggest a slightly different emphasis in the first item, and some copy edits for conciseness in the second item:
  • This is a standard message to notify contributors about an administrative ruling in effect. It does not imply that any of your contributions to date have been problematic.
  • You have recently edited the topic (topic). Be aware that the Arbitration Committee has authorised discretionary sanctions for all pages related to this topic. For more details, see (case).
isaacl (talk) 00:39, 25 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Isaacl: maybe it could be contracted a little. @Tryptofish: thanks for that. @Newyorkbrad: as a member of ArbCom, any views on this this proposal? --Jules (Mrjulesd) 21:35, 25 January 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

New Page Reviewing - Election for coordinators

New Page Reviewing - Election for 2 coordinators. Nomination period is now open and will run for two weeks followed by a two-week voting period.

  • Nomination period: Sunday 5 February to 23:59 UTC Sunday 19 February
  • Voting period: Monday 20 February to 23:59 UTC Monday 06 March

See: NPR Coordinators for full details. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 17:06, 5 February 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

To whomsoever it may concern

Please take note of consensus and action at Talk:Immigration policy of the Donald Trump administration#Requested move 2 February 2017. --QEDK () 08:52, 18 February 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

CU/OS activity

I can think of one CU/OS holder who hasn't edited since July. Perhaps it's time to do another inactivity run? --Rschen7754 06:48, 10 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Rschen7754: It's on the radar, so to speak. Ks0stm (TCGE) 07:05, 10 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And we are aware of the editor you are probably thinking about. Doug Weller talk 09:39, 10 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Edit request

Hi. Within the Logging subsection of Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions, there is a wikilink "/Log" which, while it works on that page, does not work when that page is transcluded to Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Procedures. Please change it to link to Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions/Log. Thank you.   — Jeff G. ツ (talk) 06:13, 15 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Jeff G.: Hi Jeff, thanks for that. I've made the change. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 07:37, 16 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Logging sanctions (March 2017)

Original discussion
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Currently sanctions issued pursuant to any remedy except discretionary sanctions are logged on the case page and discretionary sanctions are logged centrally at Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions/Log. From the passing of this motion all arbitration enforcement actions, including sanctions enforcing an Arbitration Committee decision, discretionary sanctions (including appeals and modifications), will be logged together in a centralised log. For this to occur:

  • The clerks are authorised to modify the current central log as required (such as moving the log and creating additional sections).
  • The sections on logging in the discretionary sanctions page are modified as follows:
Discretionary sanctions are to be recorded on the appropriate page of the centralised arbitration enforcement log. Notifications and warnings issued prior to the introduction of the current procedure on 3 May 2014 are not sanctions and remain on the individual case page logs.
  • The following section, titled "Logging", is to be added under the "Enforcement" section of the Arbitration Committee procedures page:
All sanctions and page restrictions must be logged by the administrator who applied the sanction or page restriction at **LINK TO/NAME OF CENTRAL LOG**. Whenever a sanction or page restriction is appealed or modified, the administrator amending it must append a note recording the amendment to the original log entry.

To be valid, sanctions must be clearly and unambiguously labelled as an arbitration enforcement action (such as with "arbitration enforcement", "arb enforcement", "AE" or "WP:AE" in the Wikipedia log entry or the edit summary). If a sanction has been logged as an arbitration enforcement action but has not been clearly labelled as an arbitration enforcement action any uninvolved administrator may amend the sanction (for example, a null edit or reblocking with the same settings) on behalf of the original administrator. Labelling a sanction which has been logged does not make the administrator who added the label the "enforcing administrator" unless there is confusion as to who intended the sanction be arbitration enforcement.

A central log ("log") of all page restrictions and sanctions (including blocks, bans, page protections or other restrictions) placed as arbitration enforcement (including discretionary sanctions) is to be maintained by the Committee and its clerks at **ADD LINK when finalised**). The log transcludes annual log sub-pages (e.g. [/2015], [/2014]) in reverse chronological order, with the sub-pages arranged by case. An annual log sub-page shall be untranscluded from the main log page (but not blanked) once five years have elapsed since the date of the last entry (including sanctions and appeals) recorded on it, though any active sanctions remain in force. Once all sanctions recorded on the page have expired or been successfully appealed, the log page shall be blanked. The log location may not be changed without the explicit consent of the committee.

Enacted - Kharkiv07 (T) 13:41, 26 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Voting (logging)

For this motion there are 11 active arbitrators. With 0 arbitrators abstaining, 6 support or oppose votes are a majority.

Support
  1. Given the limited comments this seems to be pretty uncontroversial. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:01, 22 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  2. Kirill Lokshin (talk) 12:47, 22 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  3. Doug Weller talk 12:59, 22 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  4. Newyorkbrad (talk) 13:12, 22 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  5. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 14:20, 22 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  6. Opabinia regalis (talk) 20:26, 22 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  7. Euryalus (talk) 10:17, 26 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oppose
Abstain

Discussion (logging)

Summary of changes
  • Following is a summary of the changes this motion will make:
    • The current discretionary sanctions log will be moved (to a new title, suggestions welcome - maybe Wikipedia:Arbitration enforcement log).
    • The new AE log will include all discretionary sanctions (and related appeals, etc) as well as (this is the new bit) all arbitration enforcement actions taken pursuant to a case.
      Currently if an editor is topic banned by ArbCom any sanctions used to enforce that would be recorded on the main case page, whereas discretionary sanctions imposed by an admin would be recorded in the centralised DS log.
    • There is a minor change to the wording on what happens when something isn't logged, compare:
      Current - While sanctions and page restrictions are not invalidated by a failure to log, repeated failure to log may result in sanctions.
      Proposed - While sanctions are not invalidated by a failure to log, at **LINK TO/NAME OF CENTRAL LOG** (as long as the action is clearly labelled as arbitration enforcement or AE), repeated failure to log may result in sanctions (such as a prohibition on taking arbitration enforcement actions.
    • The requirement that after 5 years of no entries a year's log page is blanked is removed. Instead the year's log page is untranscluded from the main log. Also introduced is that after all sanctions on a year's log page have expired the page is blanked (given that some sanctions are indefinite, this would only apply if those are lifted or successfully appealed).
    • These requirements now apply to all AE sanctions, not just discretionary sanctions.
That's all for this motion. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 06:58, 14 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Comments by Thryduulf

I would prefer it if the requirement for AE actions to be clearly marked as such applied in every case, not just those where it is not added to the central log.

To make things unambiguous I would like the meaning of "clearly marked" to be defined as: the deletion/protection/etc log and/or edit summary (as appropriate) contains at least one of the exact phrases below (linked or unlinked):

  • "arbitration enforcement" (case insensitive)
  • "AE" (case sensitive)
  • "WP:AE" (case sensitive).

If something is logged as an AE action but is not clearly marked as an AE action, then the AE protections do not apply (to users acting in good faith) until the action is reissued and clearly marked as an AE action (this can be a null edit/reblocking with the same settings, etc, to generate a new log entry). Any uninvolved admin may reissue in this manner, anyone else is strongly encouraged to bring it to the attention of the person making the action and/or an uninvolved admin. If an action is clearly just a reissue to correctly mark it, then the action belongs only to the user who originally made the action, if is unclear both users should be consulted. AE action protections start from when the correctly marked edit summary/action log entry is made, whether this is before or after the central log entry is made.

The last paragraph probably sounds overly bureaucratic, and almost certainly could be better worded, but the intention is to make it clear that:

  • If an action is not explicitly marked as AE it is not
  • If it was logged it was clearly intended as such so any uninvolved admin can explicitly mark it as an AE action on behalf of the original user without excessive hassle and without necessarily taking ownership of it (although I imagine there will be very few instances of this).
  • AE protections for actions start from the point when an action is explicitly marked as an AE action. Thryduulf (talk) 22:13, 18 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Thryduulf: I've added a paragraph which includes most of the suggestions you've made. However I haven't included the bit about AE protections not applying to admins acting in good faith as that is too ambiguous and is likely going to result in angst when something inevitably happens. I've also not included the bit about there being specific words in the log entry or edit summary to avoid it being as bureaucratic, since there are already concerns about that. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 01:38, 19 March 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Standardising arbitration enforcement procedures (April 2017)

Original discussion

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Arbitration enforcement and discretionary sanctions

The following sections are moved (word for word) from the Arbitration Committee's discretionary sanctions procedure to the Committee's procedures page (under the "Enforcement" heading) and as such apply to all arbitration enforcement actions (including discretionary sanctions and actions enforcing arbitration case remedies):

A note is to be placed prominently on the discretionary sanctions procedure noting that the Enforcement provisions on the Committee's procedures page also apply to the application and enforcement of discretionary sanctions.

Appeals and modifications

The "Appeals and modifications" in the discretionary sanctions procedure is modified to reflect the current version standard provision for appeals and modifications, including changes made to it in future amendments (Template:Arbitration standard provisions may be used).

Voting (standardising)

For this motion there are 13 active arbitrators. With 0 arbitrators abstaining, 7 support or oppose votes are a majority.

Enacted - Miniapolis 18:39, 21 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Support
  1. Given that the only two comments are positive looks like we can get this done now. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:59, 15 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  2. Euryalus (talk) 11:05, 15 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  3. Doug Weller talk 16:29, 15 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  4. Mkdw talk 18:16, 15 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  5. Kirill Lokshin (talk) 14:45, 16 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  6. Newyorkbrad (talk) 16:07, 16 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  7. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 05:18, 17 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  8. GorillaWarfare (talk) 23:45, 17 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  9. DGG ( talk ) 19:02, 18 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  10. Opabinia regalis (talk) 23:17, 18 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  11. Ks0stm (TCGE) 23:26, 18 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oppose
Abstain

Discussion (standardising)

Seems sane to me. Thanks, Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 13:14, 12 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Standardizing things usually reduces confusion, so yeah, this sounds fine. Lord Roem ~ (talk) 22:54, 12 April 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Introducing the Community health initiative on Wikipedia

Plant a Sapling for Better Future.jpg

Community health initiative

Helping the Wikimedia volunteer community to reduce the level of harassment and disruptive behavior on our projects.

Hello! Today we'd like to introduce the new Community health initiative, the people who will be working on it, and most importantly how you can get involved. See the post at Village pump (miscellaneous), Cheers, Caroline, Sydney, & Trevor of the Anti-Harassment Tools team. (delivered by SPoore (WMF) (talk) , Community Advocate, Community health initiative (talk) 14:39, 3 May 2017 (UTC))Reply[reply]

CU/OS activity (again)

Any update on enforcing the inactivity procedures? The same editor I mentioned earlier has still not edited since July 2016.

Also note the statement Reaper Eternal has posted: [3] --Rschen7754 00:44, 1 May 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Rschen7754: Still working on it at the usual tedious pace of ArbCom; I believe Callanecc was working on this. As he's just gone inactive temporarily, I'll shoot him an email and see where he was on it. Ks0stm (TCGE) 14:42, 3 May 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

How the Drafting Arbitrator is selected?

As some of you know, a while ago I've carried some academic research on the ArbCom, and interviewed/surveyed some Arbitrators. As the years go on, the paper is moving towards publication (likely this year... yeah, academia process is like not fast in my discipline), but in the final round of minor revision one of the reviewers asked me "It would be interesting to know how the Drafting Arbitrator is selected". I already quote from "Wikipedia:Arbitration/Guide to arbitration" that "In order to facilitate efficient case processing, the Committee will usually designate one or more arbitrators to be the drafting arbitrator(s) or drafter(s) for the case." but the reviewer asks if we can go beyond the official policy, and ask the Committee "How, in reality, this designation occurs". Is there a rotation system, a seniority system, is it done on volunteer-basis, is it influenced by who has free time/will, etc? Any reply would be appreciated. PS. Any editors interested in receiving my draft - older version was send to some interested arbitrators / etc. ~2 year ago - are welcome to do so (PM me). I will also publish a pre-print in few weeks (as soon as the paper is accepted), through the new version should not be significantly different from what I sent to interested parties a while back. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 08:22, 23 May 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's based on whoever volunteers. When we have newer arbitrators who have not drafted cases before, we also make some effort to pair them with an arbitrator who has. GorillaWarfare (talk) 22:06, 23 May 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I don't get it

What's the difference between sanctions for misconduct in an unauthorized page vs a page subject to Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions like Baby, It's Cold Outside (Scandal) Mr. Guye (talk) (contribs) 04:24, 28 May 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

There are probably some technical differences but the significant point is that discretionary sanctions may be enforced by any uninvolved administrator without warning or discussion. Further, if an editor is blocked under discretionary sanctions, no other admin may reverse the block—they can reverse a block but if they don't quickly correct their error they are likely to not be an admin much longer. There are procedures for appealing blocks, but blocks cannot be overturned without following those procedures. Also, anyone can make a report at WP:AE to request admin intervention to enforce discretionary sanctions. The principle is that Arbcom is the last-stop shop at enwiki, and bickering about whether decisions were justified or fair or whatever is not tolerated when it spills over to changing related articles or adding disruptive commentary on related talk pages. Johnuniq (talk) 04:59, 28 May 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

CU/OS activity (again, x2)

Any update on this? The same editor has still not edited for almost a year now. Per the m:CU and m:OS global policies, the rights can be removed by stewards after 1 year of inactivity, and I do intend to request that they do that at the 1 year mark.

Also, Reaper Eternal resigned from his CU role two months ago. Can you at least tender the resignation and request that stewards remove the right? --Rschen7754 01:47, 7 June 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi, yep, I've just been catching up on our activity requirements checks. Emails just went out to folks who have recently stopped meeting activity requirements, and I'm just checking one last thing before I post the motions regarding removal of permissions from long-term inactive functionaries and from those who've resigned the rights. Thanks for paying attention! GorillaWarfare (talk) 02:03, 7 June 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Nutshell page summary edits needed

The "This Page in a Nutshell" part at the top needs editing.

As it stands, it says "Discretionary sanctions is a special system that creates an acceptable and collaborative editing environment for our most contentious and strife-torn articles. Discretionary sanctions may be placed by administrators within specified topics after the Arbitration Committee has authorised their use. This updated Discretionary sanctions procedure was authorised by motion on 3 May 2014 and superseded and replaced all prior discretionary sanction provisions with effect from that date."

For example, the subject of the verb "is" is plural. We say "sanctions are.." not "sanctions is..."

But more to the point, it just isn't very clear.

People come here to find out what it means exactly to say that an article is under discretionary sanctions, because it isn't very clear.

For example, this pages seems at moments to say that all the normal rules and so on observed on pages not under such should be held to very strictly on such pages.

But many seem to understand it to mean that normal rules are suspended under such sanctions.

I will wait an appropriate amount of time for comment before editing it. Chrisrus (talk) 03:45, 10 June 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The above relates to Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions (its talk redirects to here). Discretionary sanctions is a single thing, so "is" is fine.
You might review "It should not be edited without the Committee's authorisation" above the nutshell. Also, someone who repeatedly restores or unhats comments at Talk:GamerGate (example) should not be trying to explain discretionary sanctions. Also see here (permalink) at NeilN's talk. Johnuniq (talk) 05:07, 10 June 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Actually, I think that the point about singular/plural is a valid one. The first quoted sentence uses the singular "is" – but the next sentence says "their use", not "its use". --Tryptofish (talk) 01:48, 11 June 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Incorrect tag

Wikipedia:Arbitration_Committee/Discretionary_sanctions is tagged as pertaining to the internal rules of the arbitration committee. It does not.

All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 22:32, 4 July 2017 (UTC).
Reply[reply]

@Rich Farmbrough: I'm not sure anyone's actually confused by this, but until fairly recently, it said "a procedure of the Arbitration Committee", which is somewhat better IMO. Callanecc, thoughts? Opabinia regalis (talk) 04:07, 5 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks Rich and OR. I tend to agree with OR, however, I've modified the notice to be clearer. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:38, 5 July 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Strike areas from list where discretionary sanctions have been lifted?

Following [4], it seems that Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions should be amended to reflect the changes - longevity, for one, seems to no longer be under DS, if I'm reading the documents correctly. Following that, I'm not sure what to do about pages such as Talk:Gertrude Weaver that seem to fall under the topic and still advise that discretionary sanctions are in force. Samsara 10:17, 6 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It seems that {{Ds/topics}} and Template:Ds/alert/doc also need to be updated. Samsara 10:28, 6 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Samsara: {{Ds/topics}} (which is transcluded into Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions) looks okay to me. All of the remedies that were rescinded in the November 2014 motion appear to be accurately reflected in the section listing areas where sanctions were previously authorized, save for Longevity. Discretionary sanctions on Longevity articles were rescinded in the 2014 motion but re-applied in August 2015. GorillaWarfare (talk) 01:49, 7 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@GorillaWarfare: Further up on that page, it shows them struck with a note they were rescinded, but no remark that they were unrescinded. Samsara 02:35, 7 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Samsara: Which page? GorillaWarfare (talk) 02:45, 7 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Longevity. Under "Enforcement", it shows it struck with a remark that it is rescinded. Only once you read down to the bottom of the amendments section do you get to the contradictory information that it has been re-applied. To my mind, if it has been rescinded and then re-applied, it should mention both motions under "enforcement" as a minimum, and possibly even be unstruck to reduce confusion. Samsara 02:50, 7 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think that's normally how we notate things, though perhaps the folks more knowledgeable about this kind of thing (@Clerks: ) could check if this is correct? GorillaWarfare (talk) 02:56, 7 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

ArbCom final decisions and copyright

Please see my thread at Wikipedia talk:Copying within Wikipedia#ArbCom cases and attribution. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 19:06, 29 August 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Different types of sanctions

What's the difference between general sanctions, article probation, and discretionary sanctions? — Mr. Guye (talk) (contribs)  23:40, 4 September 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hi Mr. Guye. Article probation is deprecated; all remaining articles that were subject to article probation have been converted to discretionary sanctions. I believe "general sanctions" is just a catch-all term for sanctions placed in a topic area (be it by the Arbitration Committee in the form of DS or by the community) vs. sanctions levied against an individual editor. It does look like WP:General sanctions could do with a lot of updating. GorillaWarfare (talk) 00:12, 5 September 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@GorillaWarfare: Thank you for answering my question. I didn't know article probation was deprecated, you couldn't tell that from Wikipedia:General sanctions. I agree that it needs updating, because the way that it is right now is misleading. — Mr. Guye (talk) (contribs)  00:35, 5 September 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Lessons learnt

I wonder if Arbcom, or even the community, should engage in a "lessons learnt" exercise following this drawn out shambles? Many people suggested that this could be a test case for enabling the community to gain the power to mandate a desysop. Many people have suggested that Arbcom could have closed this out about three months back by motion. Yet a dumpload of drama was created, and I'm wondering if anything productive came from any of it? Did we learn anything more about anything beyond my original ANI post, mandated by Rubin, which clearly demonstrated an admin not willing to be accountable for a dozen or so personal attacks. It was black-and-white, yet the volume of vitriol and irreversible damage done to Wikipedia seems incomprehensibly disproportionate to what was actually required of Arbcom here, yet Arbcom created it all themselves. This case will be used to test those who volunteer to Arb in the forthcoming elections, I very much look forward to seeing the candidates which stand out by demonstrating that they understand all the shortcomings of the manner in which this case was "handled". The Rambling Man (talk) 20:22, 13 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The question of de-adminning has been around for over a decade. I don't recall if someone has done a timeline on this. Right now, the only avenue for this is the committee. I don't recall the last time this was discussed in an organised manner. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 09:15, 14 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's clear already I think. It doesn't address the points I've made. The Rambling Man (talk) 12:29, 14 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The thinking has been that a significant sanction (such as a desysop) couldn't happen by motion alone. A case would have to be heard. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 12:50, 14 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Looks like that needs re-visiting, this case has wasted months and MB. The Rambling Man (talk) 12:57, 14 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So, Casliber, given your assertion is fully wrong, how does the community go about ensuring this kind of wasteful debacle isn't repeated? The Rambling Man (talk) 20:46, 15 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
(a) Excuse me, in what way is my assertion fully wrong? (b) By (i) setting up a Request for Comment or Proposal, (ii) circulating it widely, (iii) keeping it open for a 30 day minimum and (iv) getting 1-3 neutral people to close it. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 20:52, 15 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You suggested that desysop couldn't be achieved by motion. Basically what Arbcom have done here is instigate and then fail to properly govern a referendum which is usually the refuge of those who aren't able to make decisions on their own despite having the mandate to do so. We need to ensure Arbcom don't repeat this debacle, that those involved who are responsible for lack of timely behaviour are sanctioned, and that this case itself is quickly terminated. The continuation is an incredible embarassment. The Rambling Man (talk) 20:56, 15 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
But thank you for the advice. I will formulate an RFC to enable the community to de-sysop rogue admins so we can save ourselves the pain that we've all suffered this time round. The Rambling Man (talk) 21:01, 15 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The rationale was (IIRC) that for any significant sanctions, we'd need more than just a summary motion to vote on. Unless it was a clear emergency as there are emergency desysop procedures (so yes I should have clarified that). As far as past ideas, I wrote up User:Casliber/Fivecrat as an idea in November 2008, but I don't recall ever taking it anywhere. (if anyone else remembers specific discussions, worth listing here) Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 23:28, 15 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Aha, @The Rambling Man: see Wikipedia:Requests for de-adminship as there is a list if you scroll down. Cas Liber (talk · contribs) 23:29, 15 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

(Note: moved here from the Rubin case talkpage as was deemed unsuitable and simply deleted. The Rambling Man (talk) 05:46, 16 October 2017 (UTC))Reply[reply]

I was heavily involved in one of those past proposals for community desysopping, and I tend to think that the community will never agree on a way to do that. I also believe that ArbCom has gotten a lot better at handling it than it was a decade or so ago (for those editors who dislike how ArbCom handled this case, well, I put that in a relative sense). The issue, absent a community process, is whether ArbCom can do it in less time, with less drama. Given that ArbCom is assigned the task of handling the dramas that no one else has been able to resolve, I don't see any way to avoid drama completely. Would it have helped to have set a faster calendar for moving from case acceptance to the proposed decision? --Tryptofish (talk) 16:11, 16 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am not commenting on the specific case that's in the process of being finalized, but as a general statement I would agree with using a shorter timetable for less complex cases. Newyorkbrad (talk) 16:17, 16 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As mostly an observer rather than participant in these things, I think that would be helpful. However, I don't buy "the community will never agree" stuff. People say that about everything and they're often wrong. Relevant examples would be unbundling of admin tools. There are always a shipload of naysayers, yet we keep successfully doing it (WP:Template editor, WP:File mover, WP:Page mover, etc.), and the predictions of terrible results that will happen also prove not to be true. There is increased community will to improve the admin-related processes as a whole (e.g. the RfA reform of just a couple of years ago, and plenty of buy-in that the reforms need to go further).  — SMcCandlish ¢ >ʌⱷ҅ʌ<  19:19, 16 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sure, that's fair. To some degree, I'm reacting to my own experience in WP:CDARFC, and to some degree, I've actually come to believe that a community process is no longer needed. Contra the discussion here, I actually think that ArbCom has gotten pretty good at handling it, in sharp contrast to the situation about a decade ago. Obviously, other editors' mileage may differ. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:57, 16 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My main issue with the ArbCom handling I've observed is the reliance on a very recent admin screwup before agreeing to even look into the matter; there's no apparent regard for long-term patterns of questionable action unless that pattern is triggering a problem right now. Of the handful of admins I can think of who should probably be desysopped before they cause more harm, I don't think a single one would be, by ArbCom, unless and until the admin in question "does it again". That said, I'm skeptical that a community desysop process would work much differently, unless it were codified in a way that made it focus on long-term patterns of admin tool-use and not just be reactionary to the drama of the day. That reactionary nature is the primary problem with ANI for dealing with any user-behavior issue. Meanwhile, AN is pretty much useless; it's just "the brotherhood" almost invariably backing up other admins just because they're admins, whom other admins will not admit are ever wrong unless they've wheelwarred or otherwise transgressed so very far that no collective CYA maneuvers can sweep it under the rug. [sigh]  — SMcCandlish ¢ >ʌⱷ҅ʌ<  10:21, 17 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Case votes

Example from the Arthur Rubin case,

3) Arthur Rubin was not in violation of WP:INVOLVED at the time WP:NPR permissions were removed from Legacypac on 11 June 2017.
Passed 6 to 3 with 1 abstention at 16:27, 16 October 2017 (UTC)

My intuitive feeling from this is that the three people opposing this think that Arthur Rubin was in violation of WP:INVOLVED. However looking at the actual votes cast this was not the case: the three felt that it wasn't necessary, so they opposed. I'd like to discuss whether this is a problem and if so what should be done about it. I think it is, since it obscures how unanimous the statement is, but I'm not sure what can be done. Banedon (talk) 21:25, 16 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

(Commenting on the general principle, not the specific case.) I see your point but I also am not sure there is much that can be done, other than pointing people to the arbitrator comments on the proposed decision pages where relevant. That being said, I think you may overrate the degree to which the community focuses on the specific wordings and voting in an arbitration case once the case is over, other than in very specific contexts (such as an RfA for an administrator who was desysopped, in which case the voting specifics and arbitrator comments may indeed be very relevant to some !voters).
That being said, colleagues whose votes are misunderstood have my sympathy, not just from my ArbCom experience but also from an offline experience years ago when I served on a local school board. At that time, the daily stipend for substitute teachers was the absurdly low figure of $40 per day. The administration asked us to increase it to $50. I thought that was still much too little to constitute a living wage or attract the teachers we wanted, so I opposed it. The result was "motion to increase the substitute teacher daily stipend from $40 to $50, passed 4 to 1, with Mr. Matetsky opposed." Our Board minutes were in the "summarize actions rather than discussions" format and it took me some doing to have them annotated to make it clear that I opposed because the increase was not nearly great enough, not because I opposed any increase at all. (Yes, I know that is probably TMI there, but the details are very fresh in my mind, as this only happened 33 years ago....) Newyorkbrad (talk) 01:10, 17 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That long ago? Seems like only yesterday! :-) --Tryptofish (talk) 20:15, 17 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Not to take this TOO far afield, but Brad, this fellow former school board member can tell you that parliamentary procedure does provide a way to do what you wanted without having to fight for an annotation: While the motion to increase the rate from $40 to $50 is pending, you can make a motion to amend the pending motion by replacing "$50" with "$60" (or whatever you wanted.) Assuming that the motion to amend is defeated, then after any further discussion, a vote is taken on the un-amended main motion. But the proposed amendment and the vote on it are recorded in the minutes, so if you then vote no on the main motion, it is already clear in the minutes why you did it, and if you vote yes, the minutes will still show that you supported $60, while also expressing your preference for $50 over $40 - all through motions and votes, which are recorded in the minutes. I realize it is 33 years too late for this, but I couldn't let it go. :) Neutron (talk) 19:21, 18 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Neutron:That's quite true, although I probably wouldn't have gotten a second for my motion; I don't recall whether motions that failed for want of a second were recorded. (Our practice was to require seconds, despite RONR's guidance that seconding motions is not required in small boards and committees.) I could also have moved to create a blank, and gotten equally incredulous looks from colleagues who probably thought I was enough of a parliamentary wiseass already. But frankly I didn't anticipate the issue until I saw the minutes themselves. Newyorkbrad (talk) 08:35, 20 October 2017 (UTC) Reply[reply]
Pretty simple solution: "Passed 6 to 3 with 1 abstention at 16:27, 16 October 2017 (UTC). One opposer disagreed with the finding; two opposers agreed with it but felt it unnecessary." This whole site is about 99% explanatory text; adding a sentence more of it to a case page is virtually effortless, and should be second nature.  — SMcCandlish ¢ >ʌⱷ҅ʌ<  10:21, 17 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@NYB well yes and that's a problem no? If you were an elected board member and someone misinterprets your opposition, you could be voted out for something you didn't do. I think SMcCandlish's solution is a possibility. From first impressions it shines an unfair spotlight on the people opposing, but on second thoughts it's not that uncommon in legal reports, where the dissenting opinion is often highlighted. In our case, the majority opinion is already given by the statement, as well. Banedon (talk) 20:46, 17 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
True, although in the case of ArbCom decisions we do have the /proposed decision pages available to remove any doubts as to voting rationales, which was not true in my RL situation. A more practical problem is, who would decide which arbitrator rationales for opposing need annotating in the final decision and who would write the annotations? If we aren't careful we would develop a complex process in which a clerk prepares a set of annotations and then all the arbitrators need to sign off and another week would be added to the already-too-long decision-making process.... The final decision pages do already state "All tallies are based the votes at /Proposed decision, where comments and discussion from the voting phase is also available." so perhaps what is needed is some tweaking of that language? Newyorkbrad (talk) 15:40, 18 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The Proposed Decision page is quite messy though. There're sections like "comments" with statements like "I'm still thinking on whether to desysop or leave at an admonishment. Callanecc (talk • contribs • logs) 02:34, 4 October 2017 (UTC)", and failed motions also make it there. Maybe keep the votes in the main case page itself? The preliminary decision is already there, and includes statements like "@Beyond My Ken: We took a pause leading up to and during Wikimania since so many people were unavailable or busy. We gave a bit of extra time for any last minute comments and then we'll be moving onto the case shortly. Mkdw talk 20:14, 21 August 2017 (UTC)" which is hard to place in context since there's no comment by BMK in the case page. Banedon (talk) 21:47, 18 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Surely Arbs can write their own dissent statements (or correct one written by a clerk).  — SMcCandlish ¢ >ʌⱷ҅ʌ<  22:34, 18 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think copying over the votes on the main case page has a lot of merit. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 00:48, 21 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I can get behind either of the above suggestions. Banedon (talk) 22:11, 22 October 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Text of sanctions.user differs from longstanding practice

It's perfectly natural for rules to change over time, and this needs an update. It still says admins may punish editors under discretionary sanctions by issuing punishments "of up to one year in duration." In practice AE admins have been issuing indef blocks for years, but someone being pulled into the discretionary sanctions disciplinary process for the first time probably wouldn't know that. Right now, an indeffed editor not familiar with AE precedents could quite reasonably think either "the admins are ignorant of the rules" or "the admins broke the rules on purpose just to mess with me," and that's not fair to either party.

It is my opinion that having a hard time limit of some kind on punishments is a good match for the way people work and it would be better to change practice to match the rule as written, but the most important thing is that the written rules and actual practice match each other so the uninitiated aren't at too much of a disadvantage. There's far too much distrust in our disciplinary system, and this is an easy fix.

It's my understanding that current practice is "For the first year, any block issued under arbitration enforcement may only be lifted by the admin who placed it or by appeal at AE. All indefinite blocks issued under arbitration enforcement automatically become normal blocks after one year, at which point they may be lifted by any admin through the normal unblock process." Darkfrog24 (talk) 13:16, 8 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Suggesting some wikilinks

Suggest that § Expectations of administrators :

Expectations of administrators

This section was moved to the Arbitration Committee's Procedures page, and so applies to all enforcement decisions, on 21 April 2017

... be changed to ...

Expectations of administrators

This section was moved to the Arbitration Committee's Procedures page, and so applies to all enforcement decisions, on 21 April 2017

... as so ...

<includeonly>==</includeonly>== Expectations of administrators ==<includeonly>==</includeonly>
<span class="mw-poem-indented" style="display: inline-block; margin-inline-start: 1em;">''This section was moved to the [[Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Procedures|Arbitration Committee's Procedures page]], and so applies to all enforcement decisions, on [[Special:Permalink/776554125#Standardising_arbitration_enforcement_procedures|21 April 2017]]''

... and that "Arbitration Committee's Procedures page" in § Dismissing an enforcement request be wikilinked similarly.

Additionally, I'd like to suggest some consideration be given to either wikilinking or adding hover text to the acronyms presented in "2. prior affirmative agreement for the modification at (a) AE or (b) AN or (c) ARCA (see "Important notes" below)." in § Modifications by administrators so as to reduce the need for some readers to scroll back up to the definition section or otherwise seek out further clarification. And perhaps do so as well in other similar incidences where bare acronyms are used. ––A Fellow Editor– 12:51, 11 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Makes good sense. Fix the potentially confusing word order too: "... page, on 21 April 2017, and so ...".  — SMcCandlish ¢ >ʌⱷ҅ʌ<  16:05, 12 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Second sentence of "What this page is for" in the front matter is redundant

Requesting that a case be taken up here isn't likely to help you, but those in the dispute resolution community would be happy to assist. is redundant with the following paragraph, and is technically about what this page is not for, contrary to the title under which it is placed. This actually seems to have been an accidental leftover from before the notice was split into two "sections", as the earliest version in 2008 had essentially the same wording not under the heading "What this page is for". Since it looks like a mistake that just hasn't been noticed, and I don't think I'm missing anything, I could probably get away with removing it myself, but I figured it best to ask here first. Hijiri 88 (やや) 07:15, 14 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

 Done, thanks. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 02:09, 16 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

2017 Arbitration Committee Election

Hello, the WP:ACE2017 election has completed certification. Please see the results at Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee Elections December 2017. Best regards, — xaosflux Talk 03:56, 19 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

(Somewhat) Out of process call for arbitration  :)

Here; something for the outgoing committee to tell their grandchildren. >SerialNumber54129...speculates 14:50, 26 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Incoming and outgoing arbitrators and business between the elections and the year change

I've seen questions, confusion and discussion about what arbcom business incoming and outgoing arbitrators can participate in between the results of the elections and the terms changing over on 1 January. It seems therefore sensible to bring that all into one place so it can be easily found in subsequent years.

The following is my understanding of current practice, based on observations, comments elsewhere and memories from my time on the committee (2015). It may or may not be correct.

Definitions
  • Incoming arbitrators: Those arbitrators who were not members of the Committee immediately prior to the most recent elections and whose term officially starts on the next 1 January (00:00 UTC).
  • Outgoing arbitrators: Those arbitrators whose term ends on the next 31 December (23:59 UTC) and who were not re-elected in the most recent elections.
  • Continuing arbitrators: Those arbitrators who were members of the Committee immediately prior to the most recent elections, and who will still be arbitrators on the next 1 January. This includes those whose terms have not finished and those who were re-elected for another term in the most recent elections.
  • All arbitrators: Every arbitrator who is not recused, whether they are incoming, outgoing or continuing.


Requests for amendment and clarification
  • All arbitrators may comment, but incoming arbitrators should be cautious about doing so on matters that were initiated before the election results were announced and which are nearing completion. Incoming abitrators should be extra cautious about commenting on requests for clarification of decisions made in the current calendar year unless it is clear that discussion will not be complete by 31 December. See the separate section for motions and votes.
Requests for new cases

All arbitrators may comment on all cases, but should consider the following

  • Incoming arbitrators should probably not comment on requests where the consensus of outgoing and continuing arbitrators is or seems likely to be clear before 31 December, especially if the request was initiated before the election results were announced.
  • Outgoing arbitrators should be cautious about commenting on requests initiated in the last week (approximately) before their term ends.
  • See the motions and votes section for voting on new case acceptance.
Motions and votes (excluding in ongoing cases)
  • Only continuing and outgoing arbitrators may propose a motion.
  • Incoming arbitrators should only comment on a motion or about a vote if it is unlikely to conclude before 31 December.
  • All arbitrators may vote on all motions, but
    • Votes by incoming arbitrators are not counted if the vote/motion closes on or before 31 December, they may be struck for clarity.
    • Votes by outgoing arbitrators are struck on 1 January if the vote/motion is still open on that date.
Ongoing cases
  1. Incoming arbitrators may choose to be active or inactive on cases that are open on both 31 December and 1 January - which is the default is unclear.
    • Incoming arbitrators are encouraged to explicitly recuse rather than be marked inactive where this is relevant.
  2. If a case is scheduled or otherwise likely to be in the evidence or workshop phase on 1 January then continuing arbitrators should take the lead. Incoming arbitrators may comment but may not make binding decisions before 1 January. Outgoing arbitrators should probably not take an active role in most cases, but exceptions are possible (e.g. if an outgoing arbitrator was strongly involved with a previous case involving approximately the same set of parties).
  3. If a proposed decision is posted significantly before 31 December then only continuing and outgoing arbitrators should participate.
    • Outgoing arbitrators votes on a proposed decision or motion to close are not struck in this circumstance, and new votes on a PD or motion to close may be made after 1 January.
  4. Outgoing arbitrators may not initiate a motion to close after 31 December.
  5. If a proposed decision is posted shortly before or after 31 December then it may be voted on by (a) continuing arbitrators, (b) incoming arbitrators and (c) outgoing arbitrators who have been significantly involved with the case prior to this point.
  6. Incoming arbitrators may comment but not vote on a proposed decision or motion to close before 1 January.
  7. Most of the above are guidelines and an outgoing arbitrator may choose to participate or not participate in any case opened before 1 January likely to still be open on that date. The default is not clear so outgoing arbitrators are encouraged to make their choice explicitly known.

I note again that this is just my understanding and that it may contain errors and omissions - discussion of it is actively encouraged. Thryduulf (talk) 13:02, 30 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Thryduulf: The ongoing cases bit is the only part I disagree with, everything else looks exactly right. I've changed it to numbers so it's a little easier for me to comment on specifics (hope you don't mind).
1. Currently the default is the outgoing arbitrators remain active on the case and incoming arbitrators are inactive on already open cases.
2. I disagree that outgoing arbitrators shouldn't take an active role in cases towards the end of their term, ARBPOL allows them to continue. Perhaps if the case was opened close to the end of their term, but if it's already been open for a couple weeks come 1 Jan, outgoing arbs are more aware of it than incoming arbs.
3. Agree with this one, though it might be worth explicitly noting that incoming arbs can't vote until 1 Jan (assuming the case hasn't been closed). In the dot point below, it might be worth noting that, if the outgoing arb chooses to become inactive on the case then their votes are struck.
4. Disagree completely with this, an arb who is active on a case has the same rights to vote and vote to close as any other arb.
6. Might be worth incorporating this with #3 above.
7. Even if the defaults are clear, it's still important that arbs make their choice clear as those will likely affect majorities.
Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 22:23, 30 December 2017 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Arbitration Committee review request input queue

For lack of an obvious review request input queue, I am placing this here.

This is a signed request that someone review the need for the note atop the Talk page for the Oskar Morgenstern article.

Secondarily, please add on this page (which begins This page is for discussing...) how something of this nature can be handled better, if this is not the preferred way. Pi314m (talk) 08:13, 7 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Not exactly a review. @Srich32977: you don't seem to have added the case code. Doug Weller talk 17:07, 7 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
At one point the topic of Austrian Economics was subject to sanctions: Here. But the regime is now obsolete. The solution is to remove the template.  Done. – S. Rich (talk) 21:03, 7 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Arbitration Committee Policy Gobbledygook?

Does the Arbitration Committee believe that the statement below (found on the Michael Moore talk page) is a coherent statement of Wikipedia policy? Why not something more straightforward such as "Behave yourselves or you will be punished"? And who came up with "all pages related to post-1932 politics of the United States and closely related people"? Could you have been more ambiguous and less precise in describing the pages where this policy applies? Was there some specific event in 1932 that necessitated events in 1932 and earlier to be exempted from this policy (whatever that policy may be)? Is there something special about the U.S. that requires the U.S. being singled out in this manner that would not apply to, say, Canada?

Wikipedia is a wonderful enterprise in so many ways. Let's avoid imposing overwrought, confusing rants as policy.

"The Arbitration Committee has authorized uninvolved administrators to impose discretionary sanctions on users who edit pages related to all edits about, and all pages related to post-1932 politics of the United States and closely related people, including this article. Provided the awareness criteria are met, discretionary sanctions may be used against editors who repeatedly or seriously fail to adhere to the purpose of Wikipedia, any expected standards of behaviour, or any normal editorial process." — Preceding unsigned comment added by 159.178.208.165 (talk) 04:02, 9 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The post-1932 business is from Remedy 1.2 for the American Politics 2 case of 2015. I didn‘t follow the case, but I imagine the rationale can be found in the Workshop and Proposed Decision phases linked at the top of that page.—Odysseus1479 04:21, 9 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I also did not actively follow the case, but as I understand it, the idea for the 1932 cutoff was proposed because early U.S. history is relatively uncontroversial compared to more recent U.S. history, and the 1932 U.S. presidential election seemed like a good cutoff point for that. The U.S. is not being singled out – these discretionary sanctions are part of a series of such sanctions imposed on a variety of issues that are controversial and have resulted in difficulty in maintaining a collegial editing environment: see WP:DSTOPICS for the complete list. I can sympathize with the idea that this area of Wikipedia has become much more bureaucratic than other areas, but on the other hand, the issues we deal with here are very complex, and simple solutions aren't always easy to develop. Mz7 (talk) 05:10, 9 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I find the language perfectly appropriate. Despite what some people may think, Wikipedia is a serious project and needs to convey and maintain that image. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 09:03, 9 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions#Proportionality is missing

There's still a link to it from inside Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions but there's no such section or anchor any longer. I find that ... disturbing.  — SMcCandlish ¢ >ʌⱷ҅ʌ<  14:31, 9 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Fixed. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:56, 15 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Wikipedia:Arbitration/Index/Cases/2018

Close date is wrong. It says Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Conduct of Mister Wiki editors#Final decision closed 22 March 2017 (AN notice) , please fix ,thanks! Hhhhhkohhhhh (talk) 15:47, 20 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Fixed. Thanks. Newyorkbrad (talk) 15:57, 20 January 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

WP:ENGVAR

Hello, I just noticed that Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Procedures uses a mix of English variants, e.g. behaviour and authorised, but jeopardize and authorize. Would someone mind tweaking the spelling of these (and reviewing the rest of the page) so that it's consistently just one variety of English? Obviously MOS:ARTCON is for articles, not project pages, but it's a basic enough concept that policies/procedures/etc. probably ought to comply with the "use one variety" idea. Nyttend (talk) 12:28, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Nyttend: As both "ise" and "ize" are British English, we just have to decide if the page should use Oxford spelling or not. I'd suggest just pick the one that is used the most and change the rest to that. Doug Weller talk 15:04, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oxford spelling is consistent with British, American and Canadian English, so it makes sense to prefer it, then find other ways to express words where the spelling differs. SarahSV (talk) 15:43, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
But is there an actual reason that the page needs to be consistently one way or the other? --Floquenbeam (talk) 16:31, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree with Floquenbeam. Why not use Mid-Atlantic English? Arbcom pages are pedantic enough without adding spelling angst. And, SlimVirgin, to actually choose different words because of discomfort about spelling seems to me akin to using a sledgehammer to crack a nut. Words determine content. Bishonen | talk 16:40, 1 February 2018 (UTC).Reply[reply]
Adding a proper ping for User:SlimVirgin. Bishonen | talk 16:42, 1 February 2018 (UTC).Reply[reply]
@Bishonen: but that's precisely why we must add spelling angst. Re: choosing different words, that has long been the MoS advice—try to find words in common to avoid these disputes (MOS:COMMONALITY). SarahSV (talk) 16:48, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I spell inconsistently now. And don't really care. I've been told I actually have a mid-Atlantic accent. Partially because I'm an American ex-pat, partially because I seem to have had one when I was young (teenager, early 20s). Not sure why, perhaps my mother who as I recall used a lot of English pronunciations she was taught at school. I never get involved in ize/ise changes. Doug Weller talk 16:54, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I just asked for consistency because the lack of consistency makes things look sloppy. In this kind of setting, more uptight than anything else on this project, we ought to be careful about basically everything — not that the spelling by itself is critical, but it doesn't help the atmosphere if we look like we're being careless. After all, no matter what variety we want to use, the current version has spelling errors. No complaint if we want to use Oxford spelling, since it's an ordinary variety of English; we just ought to use it consistently. PS, choosing different words — that's saying to use lawn instead of yard or garden, while here the vocabulary's all the same, just spelled a little differently. Nyttend (talk) 23:01, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
For what it's worth, I frequently notice ENGVAR inconsistencies in ArbCom documents, and it always looks slightly jarring to me. --Tryptofish (talk) 23:14, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
See deck chair reorganisation. I would previously have been an advocate of this kind of minutiae fixing, but given the vastly wider problems of lack of trust in Arbcom by the community, lack of communication from Arbcom to the community, secret discussions over editors by Arbcom, etc, fixing up the ENGVAR of the "supposed" rules by which Arcbom play is probably down in the weeds priority-wise. If I had an opinion, it'd be we all speak Kiwi-Eng. In the meantime we deal with what we have and who have. The Rambling Man (talk) 23:20, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Also see Law of triviality. DuncanHill (talk) 23:49, 1 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Fixed the obvious ones - went with "ize" etc as that's what's common on the older versions of this page. Certainly not the biggest issue in the world, but doesn't hurt to use the same spelling within the one document, as Nyttend says. Let me know if I missed any. -- Euryalus (talk) 03:08, 3 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Placing edit notices

I don't know how to place edit notices so they display in the editor view but not in the article text ... Alan Sabrosky needs to be templated for 9/11 - (is there an edit notice for this topic area?) - three ips have tried to make very similar unsourced changes to this BLP in the last month.Seraphim System (talk) 03:19, 2 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Seraphim System: it would go here: Template:Editnotices/Page/Alan Sabrosky, you will need to make an edit request for an admin or template editor to place it there. — xaosflux Talk 03:53, 2 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I've added the standard BLP editnotice (by adding [[Category:Living people]]). Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 05:07, 3 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Lifting ban restrictions

Where is the right place to request lifting of ban restrictions? -- Magioladitis (talk) 09:25, 13 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Restrictions imposed by Arbcom can be appealed at WP:ARCA. -- Euryalus (talk) 09:36, 13 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks. -- Magioladitis (talk) 09:59, 13 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Procedural question about DS

If discretionary sanctions that had been authorized for a topic were removed (e.g. at WP:ARCA), would that invalidate then-current restrictions and other remedies placed on an editor by WP:AE (or by ArbCom) when the DS were still active? (I mean if DS were de-authorized for the topic, not a particular discretionary article-level sanction an admin had applied being vacated later, though that might be its own question.)  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  07:10, 20 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

No, sanctions which were imposed under a discretionary sanction remedy (which was current at the time the sanction was applied) remain in force until they either expire (if applicable) or are lifted, However, while I don't think this has been done and definitely isn't common, if the motion de-authorising discretionary sanctions explicitly revokes discretionary sanction in the topic area being de-authorised then your answer would be yes. But the default is that sanctions remain active until they expire or are lifted. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 07:49, 20 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Orky-dorky. That's about what I expected, but wanted to check before proposing something that might potentially have undesirable consequences had the answer been different.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  05:09, 23 February 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Excessive Wordiness; Complete Lack of a Useful Summary

This entire page reads like it was written by a lawyer trying to use a lot of words to sound smart without providing useful information. I read several sections into the article, and all I found was an incredibly long-winded, wordy equivalent of "administrators do stuff to keep bad content out of Wikipedia." Even the 81-word, 508-character 'this page in a nutshell' section is full of irrelevant and redundant language like "Discretionary sanctions is a special system that..." I don't know if the Arbitration Committee cares, but the page could really use a TL:DR. Octaazacubane (talk) 02:17, 11 April 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Proposal to make discretionary sanctions actually work, by auto-delivering the required DS "awareness" notices

 – Pointer to relevant discussion elsewhere.

Please see: WP:Village pump (proposals)#Bot to deliver Template:Ds/alert
 — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  18:03, 2 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I have questions about a ban where should I post them?

I have questions about a ban where should I post them? -- Magioladitis (talk) 17:17, 5 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It would depend on the question and about what type of ban you're inquiring about. If it is a community ban question, there are a number of potential venues but you could ask it first at WP:AN. If it's an Arbitration Committee ban question (and not an appeal), you could ask it here or by email. If it's a question or appeal about a specific sanction or restriction placed on you then you should follow the process at WP:ARCA. Mkdw talk 17:30, 5 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have an incident where an editor questions where I violated a restriction I have and we would like clarifications. -- Magioladitis (talk) 20:29, 5 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Plainly, I told Magioladitis he may have violated his ban here with comments like this, or is dancing very close to a ban violation. Magioladitis wants clarification on this. See also Special:Permalink/849002852#Error 78 is listed as not cosmetic. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 20:33, 5 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, this is important to clarify since I am not the one who defined which errors are cosmetic and which are not. I gave HB a heads up of the list that in the past they helped to sort (and at some point they stopped). -- Magioladitis (talk) 20:36, 5 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This is 'important' to clarify in the sense that making claims like "One more proof that sometimes an edit may be valid even if it does not change the rendered output." is in no way a good-faith request to clarify WP:COSMETICBOT for an existing bot task or one you may undertake. This is quite clearly a commentary on WP:COSMETICBOT and the nature of cosmetic edits. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 21:00, 5 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Since my comment was on AWB's pge it was a comment on the bug report and why AWB fixes error this while Mediawiki just surpresses it. --- Magioladitis (talk) 21:18, 5 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As far as I can tell, the discussion at WT:AWB had nothing to do with COSMETICBOT until Magioladitis brought it up. While the error may have not changed the visual output of the page, the primary issue and discussion was about the errant addition of another {{reflist}} template, and subsequently about WP:AWBRULES. In my opinion, Magioladitis seemingly very intentionally brought up COSTMETICBOT without any prompt in a very pointed way and thereby violated his restriction. Magioladitis, you must drop your personal crusade and completely remove yourself from any COSMETICBOT discussions as outlined in Remedy 1.1. Mkdw talk 05:22, 6 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree. Magioladitis, this wasn't a good move. Stay away from COSMETICBOT discussions. Doug Weller talk 13:55, 6 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
OK. I will try to explain the AWB/Mediawiki issue that causes the bug in Phabricator. -- Magioladitis (talk) 14:18, 6 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I would like to be able to reply to AWB issues so I'll probably have to ask for some relaxation of the rules at Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Clarification and Amendment. Till then I will refrain for every similar action. Thanks everyone for the advice. -- Magioladitis (talk) 14:22, 6 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
To be clear, discussing the bug itself is fine ("Mediawiki problem not AWB. Mediawiki hides second occurrance of reflist. There is a CHECKWIKI task for it."). What isn't fine is the "One more proof that sometimes an edit may be valid even if it does not change the rendered output." comment that follows it. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 17:37, 6 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

ARBINFOBOX followup: big thread open

In response to WP:ARBINFOBOX and WP:ARBINFOBOX2 suggesting that the community needs to come up with infobox inclusion criteria and/or an include/exclude default, I've opened a broad discussion of the matter here.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  00:24, 10 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

PS: There's a fair amount of sentiment there to just ignore ArbCom's idea that the community should impose criteria or a default, either because ArbCom is wrong, or it's just outside ArbCom's scope to tell the community what it needs to decide. (I don't agree, but simply note that the "do nothing" responses are non-trivial, though the bulk of the discussion is about possible rationales for and details of potential criteria).  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  06:29, 10 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Can ArbCom authorise arbitrary deletion of articles?

Can ArbCom authorise Discretionary Sanctions to authorise a new deletion process to enable arbitrary deletion of articles, unreviewable by WP:DRV? See Wikipedia:Administrators'_noticeboard#Cryptocurrency_general_sanctions_and_Wikipedia:Deletion_review/Log/2018_July_9#Universa_Blockchain_Protocol. —SmokeyJoe (talk) 02:11, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@SmokeyJoe: I doubt there's debate as to whether ArbCom remedies can mandate the deletion of a page. Whether ArbCom did authorize deletion as a discretionary sanction is a closer question, but I would say yes. Whether the deletion-as-discretionary-sanction in this particular case was a good idea within administrative discretion is a question for WP:AE/WP:AN (and ultimately WP:ARCA); please keep in mind that "All enforcement actions are presumed valid and proper, so the provisions relating to modifying or overturning sanctions apply, until an appeal is successful", so until an appeal is successful, it is improper to overturn the sanction and administrators doing so may be desysopped by the Committee. I express no opinion on whether the sanction was advisable and this comment is in my personal capacity (not on behalf of the Committee). Best, Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 02:43, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I think the answer is a simple "No". Content decisions were never in the remit of ArbCom. ArbCom exists for arbitration, which means editor issues. Not content. The deletion of a mainspace page, a intended article, is a content decision. Deletion policy applies. I though this was so simple, but I guess a well advertised RfC is needed, see Wikipedia:Village_pump_(idea_lab)#Discussion_on_RfC_Formulation. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 02:54, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • The simple solution to this question is simply to review the GS question at AN if there is a contested sanction again in the future. TonyBallioni (talk) 04:14, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • ArbCom doesn't make content decisions, but it can create procedures through which our policies are enforced. For example, ArbCom has authorized binding naming conventions for Macedonia, mandated that the results of a consensus on the lede of an article be considered binding for three years, and most prominently "authorized [administrators] to use any and all means at their disposal", including "page protection and deletion tools" (which has since been superseded by discretionary sanctions), to enforce BLP. Administrators commonly use DS to require consensus for any contentious changes to articles (example). In all of these instances, the content of articles is being restricted under ArbCom's authority, but it isn't ArbCom making "content decisions". ArbCom clearly has the authority to authorize deletion of pages; whether it's a wise decision is a question for when it actually comes up. Best, Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 04:50, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • Thanks Kevin. Interesting. No issues with Macedonia and Jerusalem. WP:BLPBAN!! That was a good thing, I had never seen it, an it explains why respected admins have, for years, been deleting "per BLPDELETE", in apparent contravention of WP:CSD. At WP:BLPDELETE, there is and was no mention of BLPBAN, and WP:CSD contains no information. "Superseded"? I can read the links, and a lot of May 2014 stuff, but it is all human unreadable jargon to me. Where in "discretionary sanctions" is the authorisation to delete BLPs? Is there any objective criteria? --SmokeyJoe (talk) 05:51, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        That lack of cross-referencing from BLPDELETE to BLPBAN should surely be fixed, even if it's just in an {{efn}} footnote.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  15:32, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        Whether or not ArbCom has actually authorized deletion as a discretionary sanction is a closer question than whether it has the power to; based on my reading, as well as the history and context (ArbCom clearly did not mean to restrict administrative authority when it enacted the "housekeeping provisions" which replaced BLPBAN, which did authorize deletion, with discretionary sanctions), the authorization to impose "page protection, revert restrictions, prohibitions on the addition or removal of certain content (except when consensus for the edit exists), or any other reasonable measure that the enforcing administrator believes is necessary and proportionate for the smooth running of the project" (WP:AC/DS#sanctions.page) included deletion in "any other reasonable measure". That's not an official interpretation for the Committee, though. Best, Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 16:33, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        The way I prefer to look at Wikipedia policy, policy pages document best practice, the solutions to this is to document BLPDELETE at WP:CSD, as well as mentioning WP:GS/Crypto alongside or inside CSD#G11. —SmokeyJoe (talk) 23:01, 17 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        See Wikipedia_talk:Criteria_for_speedy_deletion#Add_mention_of_WP:BLPDELETE_to_WP:CSD. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:38, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Status on an ArbCom decision

I checked Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Magioladitis but I can't find which of the Remedies werε implemennted ανδ which were not. How can I check the status of these remedies? -- Magioladitis (talk) 15:30, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

They were all implemented by virtue of having passed. As for their status, they're all still active, save for "Community encouraged to review policy on cosmetic edits", which pretty much happened and is a settled question now. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 16:08, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, the last one (5.3.2). Where did it happen? How did the ArbCom implement this? Was there any call for centralised discussion? Same for 5.3.1. -- Magioladitis (talk) 19:27, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
ARBCOM may not impose anything upon the community. ARBCOM encouraged it. Whether or not the community does it is up to the community. It happened (incompletely) with WP:CHECKWIKI at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Check Wikipedia/Archive 3#Identifying cosmetic fixes. For AWB there is T138977, T100443, any of these and various other open tickets. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 19:58, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
ArbCom imposed restrictions to editors i.e. to community. Moreover, how the ARBCOM communicates with the community? -- Magioladitis (talk) 23:17, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Of course ArbCom can impose restrictions on editors when necessary, that is its purpose and its remit. What it cannot do is make or change policy, or force the community to hold an RfC to make or change policy. It can recommend that the community review its policy, which is what happened in that case. ♠PMC(talk) 23:27, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So, did my actions actually helped in reviewing and changing the policy on "cosmetic fixes"? That's nice news! But ,I think the discussion still remained between a few people. Is there any way to make this known to widr audience and attact more people on discussing these matters? As said before this discussion still it is incomplete and since we had a second ArbCom case with almost the same people involved, we should proceed further in order to rresolve this in an even better way. The AWB requests were mainly by me or before this Arbcom case which also shows how valuable was this case and the one that proceded this in resolving a longstanind issue in the community. Thanks, Magioladitis (talk) 23:51, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
News? This stuff is over a years old. And most of this stuff was designed from the start to curb your problematic edits. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 03:59, 21 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Recall that 14 CHECKWIKI errors still remain in unknown status. If we resolve this, we can go back to ArbCom case and reexamine my case too. Recall that we also have a new watchlist system which is near to the one I described in the ArbCom cases. -- Magioladitis (talk) 23:54, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Note that Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Magioladitis 2#COSMETICBOT-discussion prohibition (1) remains in effect. isaacl (talk) 23:58, 18 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The ArbCom has to resolve this then. The remedies of cases were posed more than a year ago. Does 2.1 of case 2 affect CHECKWIKI project too? -- Magioladitis (talk) 00:03, 19 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Insofar as it explicitly prohibits you from discussing COSMETICBOT, yes. It has been in force since the case. It is still in force. It will remain in force for the foreseeable future until it is explicitly rescinded by the Arbitration Committe.
You were warned about potentially violating your restriction less than two weeks ago in a discussion just a little ways up this page, and here you are circling the same point yet again. If you say one more word about COSMETICBOT, or the impact of your cosmetic edits, I will block you for violating your restrictions despite ample warning. Please don't make me do that. ♠PMC(talk) 00:19, 19 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Don't know if this is the right place to ask this but an editor has placed ArbCom notices articles that didn't have them before...

I am wondering if this is appropriate/accepted-practice (or not). One of the talk page is Talk:Sergei Skripal and here is the edit history, the other two can be found in the editor's contributions history. Can anyone (not just an ArbCom member or an admin) place these notices on talk pages? Couldn't find the answer so I thought I'd ask here. Thanks, Shearonink (talk) 16:45, 21 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Usually an admin does it but afaik there's no restriction on anyone else doing it. If you disagree, discuss or follow normal dispute resolution procedures, but it's honesty not a huge deal. Just having the template there doesn't do anything; the enforcing administrator will make a call as to whether specific edits fall in DS topics whether or not there's a template. Best, Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 20:53, 25 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's always been my interpretation but I'd like to hear some Arbs confirm it.  — SMcCandlish ¢ 😼  22:38, 27 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm pretty sure this was discussed somewhere in the last few months... But here is a statement from an arbitrator in 2016: Wikipedia talk:Arbitration Committee/Archive 18#Who can put discretionary sanctions notices on an article's talk page? isaacl (talk) 00:23, 28 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I went from that link back to links located there, which led me to Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Discretionary sanctions#Alerts, which I think answers this question officially. It begins: Any editor may advise any other editor that discretionary sanctions are in force for an area of conflict. I think that's the answer. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:54, 28 July 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

GamerGate cabals

Through AC and its AE, every GamerGate-tagged articles have become perfect examples of WP:cabal. Any meaningful discussions are heavily censored by a core group of gatekeepers prioritize punishment of any trace of wrongthink. These gatekeepers are doing this at absolutely any cost and their drive is simply to cabalize the topic; it does not serve the interest of Wikipedia in the long run, and breaks the spirit of WP:Pillars. With little oversight, AC has even allowed the AE enforcement of GG rules to be applied to even loosely-related articles, those which gatekeepers see fit to their own views. AC might want to have a closer look at the imposed AE rules, and specifically at how rigorously they are applied in practice. 86.125.45.220 (talk) 12:29, 16 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Unless you're a logged out editor or also use a different IP range, you've not had any problems yourself. GG applies to any related edits in any article, even if the majority of the article isn't covered by sanctions. If you want something done, you'll have to provide chapter and verse with diffs and probably bring a case. Doug Weller talk 15:29, 16 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Speeding up Committee deliberations - floating an idea

Some bits of the arbitration process run slower than pretty much everybody thinks would be ideal. One small part of this that I remember from my time on the committee was getting enough voices heard to make a decision about stuff (for example one motion was waiting one more arb to say yay or nay for several weeks and eventually rolled over to the following committee). Obviously I don't know if this is still true three years later though.

A thought that just occurred to me that might help this would be for arbitrators to be deemed inactive on all business they have not commented on within N days (7 or 10 perhaps) of it first being raised. This would not require a substantial contribution - even just an acknowledgement that they have seen it and intend to comment on it later would be enough to not be inactive on it. for a case request an "awaiting statements" comment would count.

I haven't fully thought this through, so this is not a proposal (or at least not yet). It's a request for input from other people to see if this is a good idea (as is or with changes) or a bad idea. Would it actually help? Are there problems with it I've not spotted? Thryduulf (talk) 16:22, 7 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

To certain extent I think it is still true. With the mailing list as it is, I think it is difficult to track the last time someone has commented; some people does it, but it just feels tedious. With the on wiki stuff it can be slightly tricky; a lot of the folks are active on mailing list but doesn't really comment on wiki; personally I feel decisions are reached much faster when it is being deliberated on wiki, but I guess this is another topic. Alex Shih (talk) 05:13, 8 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I remember that I used to email a weekly summary of the open votes and which active arbs hadn't voted. It didn't work great since clerks don't have access to most of the committee's deliberations, but I think a similar system could work well – emailed reminders of what matters are open and which arbs might have accidentally missed votes. Best, Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 05:17, 8 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Updating case page to incorporate amendments?

Hey, it recently came to my attention that even though three of my four editing restrictions (the two TBANs and the 1RR) from this case were suspended, only one of them has been marked as such on the actual case page. The relevant motions for the other two are here and here. I have no idea where to go to ask about this, which is why I'm here. Hijiri 88 (やや) 23:13, 22 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Motion: CU/OS activity standards (September 2018)

Original discussion
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

From Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee/Procedures#CheckUser/Oversight permissions and inactivity
Original:

Accordingly, the minimum activity level for each tool (based on the preceding three months' activity) shall be five logged actions, including at least one community-requested logged action. Examples of community-requested actions include suppression requests via the oversight-en-wp OTRS queue; CheckUser requests through Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations, those stemming from account creation requests, those made in response to threads at an administrative noticeboard, or posted on a CheckUser's personal user talk page. These activity requirements do not apply to: sitting members of the Arbitration Committee; or holders who have temporarily relinquished access, including CheckUsers or Oversighters who accept appointment to the Ombudsman Commission.

and:

Holders of the permissions are also expected to:

  • Remain active on the English Wikipedia unless they have previously notified the Arbitration Committee of a significant expected absence and its likely duration.
  • Consider temporarily relinquishing their permission(s) for planned prolonged periods of inactivity.
  • Reply within seven days to email communications from either the Audit Subcommittee or the Arbitration Committee about their use of the permissions.
Replaced with:

Accordingly, the minimum activity level for each tool (based on the preceding three months' activity) shall be five logged actions. Consideration will be given for activity and actions not publicly logged, such as responding to requests on the Checkuser or Oversight OTRS queues; participation on list discussions; activity at Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations; responding to account creation requests; and responding to Checkuser or Oversight requests on administrative noticeboards, UTRS queue, and user talk pages. These activity requirements do not apply to: (a) sitting members of the Arbitration Committee; (b) holders using the permissions for audit purposes; or (c) holders who have temporarily relinquished access, including CheckUsers or Oversighters who accept appointment to the Ombudsman Commission.

and:

Holders of the permissions are also expected to:

  • Remain active on the English Wikipedia unless they have previously notified the Arbitration Committee of a significant expected absence and its likely duration.
  • Consider temporarily relinquishing their permission(s) for planned prolonged periods of inactivity.
  • Reply within seven days to email communications from the Arbitration Committee about their use of the permissions.
For this motion there are 12 active arbitrators. With 0 arbitrators abstaining, 7 support or oppose votes are a majority.
Enacted: Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 05:19, 30 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Support
  1. The proposal is to update the language and examples in the existing outdated policy to better reflect functionary areas of activity and current practices. Mkdw talk 20:29, 25 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  2. as a first step. DGG ( talk ) 16:17, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  3. Agreed a good first step. RickinBaltimore (talk) 16:19, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  4. It’s a start. Katietalk 18:22, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  5. Euryalus (talk) 04:00, 27 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  6. Per Mkdw and per Risker in the comment section. Newyorkbrad (talk) 04:25, 27 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  7. Personally, I'm of the opinion that general activity on wiki should be sufficient to retain the tools, but I certainly see this as an improvement. WormTT(talk) 08:55, 27 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  8. Sure, sounds reasonable. I'll cop to being one of those lame-os who doesn't prioritize this process, particularly for people who are still editing - as I've said before, here and on the mailing list, I've almost completely changed my mind on this since joining the committee, and whether that's a genuinely new perspective or turning into The Man, I don't know. I originally thought it was important to prevent "functionaries" from becoming a social class rather than a clunky not-so-short shorthand term for a couple of user rights. I've since come to the view that trying to do that kind of social engineering is both ineffective and not really the point of the activity requirements, though of course I still agree with the underlying premise. The problem with the current requirements is mostly that they're not at all targeted toward preventing data breaches due to account compromise - if that's the problem we're trying to solve, then we should have mandatory 2FA plus an automatic expiration after a much shorter period of overall account inactivity. Rhetoric aside, the current process focuses only on use of CU/OS use, independent of other editing activity that clearly indicates the account is under the control of the right person, and is really not designed to target that risk. Opabinia regalis (talk) 09:47, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  9. I support this as a good start. There's no reason to let the perfect be the enemy of the good - we can alter things further if need be in other motions. ♠PMC(talk) 18:14, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oppose
  1. Oppose calling this our activity policy quite strongly until we address whether we're actually going to hold functionaries to these requirements. Our current activity policy, even after these changes, is heavily misleading to the community. We simply do not enforce it as written, and there appears to be no appetite here to even talk about changing that. We check inactivity incredibly infrequently, and when a functionary is found to be inactive even based on this lax application of already lax standards, the Committee essentially never acts to remove the tools. This applies even to functionaries that show up repeatedly in our activity checks. I can't vote for this if I don't think it will represent what will actually happen behind-the-scenes. The community deserves more transparency than that.

    We've seen administrator accounts (and even Jimbo's account, which had CU/OS access) compromised in the past couple years. Functionaries are not required to have 2FA enabled, and many do not. Under this set of circumstances, I don't see how we can ignore the fact that inactive functionary accounts could lead to a very preventable security breach.

    Frankly, the community should be outraged by how lax we actually are with enforcing functionary activity. It's your data that's potentially vulnerable when we fail to apply the principle of least privilege. As noted by Beeblebrox below, a functionary recently retained their tools through a full year with zero logged actions. We're setting ourselves up for a future security breach when we allow something like that. I can't support reaffirming that this is our activity policy when it doesn't match what we're actually doing. ~ Rob13Talk 06:20, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

    With respect to Opabinia regalis' view, I just want to point out that the principle of least privilege contradicts it. I'm not an information security expert, but I trust those that are, and they're near-universally in agreement that the principle of least privilege is important to maintaining overall security of a system. It's about reducing the number of possible attack vectors. Further, the community has decided this principle is important, given the furor surrounding interface administrators. ~ Rob13Talk 17:55, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  2. I want to support this, I really do, because the changes in what is counted as activity is important. That bit's great. But Rob's right saying that we don't enforce the three month bit - in fact I'm not sure if it should be 3, 4 or 6 months and I'd like to see more discussion about that soon because it isn't working in practice - in fact I wish this motion had left the time period to be set by the community. Of course my oppose doesn't matter because there are 8 in favor, so I haven't scuppered what is in part a good change. Doug Weller talk 12:04, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Abstain
  1. I was originally going to support this change, however, on further reflection I do have reservations especially as the person who has been doing these audits. I'm concerned that this change will make an already time-consuming and difficult process even more difficult as it will add grey to a process which needs to be black and white to work effectively. The more grey we make it, the more discussion and consensus building will be required in a process which history has shown arbitrators tend to be too busy to care about. I'm not opposing the change as making steps forward on this is a good thing and I think the arguments in favour are sound. Plus, I can live with this if the majority wants it. The way it's implemented, however, will need to be discussed when this motion passes. Callanecc (alt) (talk) 12:39, 29 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Comments by arbitrators
  • I would like to pin down removal procedures at the same time as tackling the activity requirements. It's meaningless to update the requirements if the requirements aren't evenly or consistently enforced, and they currently aren't. I would be interested to hear if the community saw any disadvantages in automatic removal of functionary tools if a functionary goes inactive, with the tools restored upon request. ~ Rob13Talk 03:15, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • By automatic removal, I mean removal not requiring a vote of the full Committee. Obviously, we can't require the stewards to do our work for us. It would be allowing an individual arb to go to the stewards and say our criteria for removal has been met, please remove, rather than requiring a vote of the Committee to remove someone even after they've failed to meet our activity requirements. ~ Rob13Talk 13:42, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • To explain my oppose above a bit further, I do support this move to define "activity" more broadly. What I'm opposing is continuing the fiction of an unenforced activity policy. Any community member can verify how poorly we've enforced this. Simply check WP:AUDIT/STATS since the start of 2018 and see how often functionaries have fallen below the "minimums". Zero functionaries have been removed by the Committee during this time. ~ Rob13Talk 06:25, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • As I understand this, the point of this is to increase the range of actions that count towards the requirement. I think it's a necessary update, But it is a minimal update. In the last few years, we have never managed to get to this every three months, and we have usually been quite liberal in accepting a promise of continuing activity as sufficient. I suggest that what is needed is changing 3 months to 6 months, and adding the word "normally" somewhere appropriate. I would very strongly oppose anything automatic in this connection--this is something where we need more flexibility, not less. DGG ( talk ) 16:17, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I intentionally left out audits and the removal process because they are more controversial; waiting for an omnibus motion that will cover all three issues will mean waiting forever. As indicated, these issues have been debated for years without any movement. The proposal would almost certainly stall and not reach a consensus resulting in no changes. All three issues need to be revisited, but not with in a singular proposal. The proposal is not a mutually exclusive option to evaluating other proposals about audits, activity, and removal. Mkdw talk 17:35, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • @Beeblebrox: If the current minimum activity requirements do not seem realistic or reasonable, it is no surprise that for years the Committee has not strictly enforced them. Outdated procedures only contribute to that fact. In my experience, no one on the current Committee believes inactive editors should retain the tools. The point of contention always seems to come down to three primary issues: (1) the frequency of audits; (2) what defines activity; (3) the removal process.
For me, the most important factor is functionary activity. Ideally, the procedure should not encourage over-liberal use of the tools to simply game meeting the hard-defined logged requirement. And for the purposes of audit, it seems apparent to me when someone is not active. Tracking publicly logged actions gives us a good starting place to look further into the matter.
If someone responds to ten oversight OTRS tickets and the oversight tool is used only four times and the rest are 'decline' responses, I would much rather give due consideration and deem them 'active'. Under the current policy, that person should be removed for inactivity regardless, or under the current practice, they would be allowed to continue and the Committee would be non-compliant.
Lastly, I did not rewrite the procedure to expressly say "five logged actions and/or activity and actions not publicly logged" because they are not equal. My rationale was to provide a way for commonsense to prevail. The Committee should be capable of adequately reviewing each on a case-by-case basis, or at least the community may address it when they appoint individuals. Mkdw talk 20:17, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • As others have indicated in their votes, which is based upon lengthy list discussions, this is only the first step in a process that will require many. Several issues still need to be resolved such as minimum activity requirements, audit frequency, removal, and security. The only way the Committee will enforce these requirements will be if there is consensus and buy-in. It will take time to get there and we are not going to do it in just one step.
There have been years of exhaustive discussions, including with the current sitting Committee, that have gone no where. This has been acknowledged repeatedly both off and on-wiki. It is clear that too many issues are trying to be addressed at once and the debates always stall. Waiting for consensus on all issues will mean waiting forever. Pursuing an omnibus motion to overhaul the procedures has consistently failed to move even past discussion. An incremental approach needs to be attempted to capture and lock down the areas we do agree upon so we can focus on the areas we do not. Others must obviously vote their conscious, but I am disappointed to hear that they agree with the changes, but oppose the motion because we have not reached a point that will not be achieved until many steps later. Frankly, requiring full consensus ahead of any action has been one of the contributing factors that has paralyzed the Committee and resulted in non-enforcement. The process needs collaboration and compromise to reach an agreed upon policy that will be enforced. Mkdw talk 16:32, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As noted privately, I would support such incremental steps if we formally stated this policy is currently not being enforced until there is actual agreement within the Committee that we should enforce it. Otherwise, we're giving a false impression to the community about the current state of enforcement by reaffirming the current policy. ~ Rob13Talk 17:57, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Based on my post at ACN it's clear that the policy is sometimes being enforced the problem is, and has always been during my time on the Committee, that the level of arbitrator buy-in isn't strong enough for there to be consistent enforcement. I made an attempt to streamline the removal process during my first term on the Committee and that definitely made it easier by codifying a process and not requiring a ccommittee vote to remove the tools from inactive CUs/OSers. However, the problem is that, so far, no Committee has agreed to automatic removal of permissions which is the most time effective way to reduce the significant amount of time it takes to do the audit, contact inactive functionaries (twice), recheck activity and check that no one objects to removing permissions from functionaries who haven't responded. Until the Committee designs and agrees (that is, through consensus building and majority votes) a process which is much less time consuming but still fair to functionaries the activity standards simply cant be effectively enforced. Callanecc (alt) (talk) 12:10, 29 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Community comments

  • More like just a wording change (on a verbatim level), since the meaning appears to remain mostly the same, but perhaps the extra clarity doesn't hurt, seeing as the Audit Subcommittee is inactive. —Mythdon 05:27, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This has literally been argued over for years, and whatever standards are put into place are never really enforced, so I sadly think this is not a productive use of time unless ArbCom is really prepared to enforce the policy. --Rschen7754 05:31, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • As far as automatic removal, the procedure would need to be acceptable to the stewards on Meta. I think an automatic policy where the removal request was made to stewards by an arbitrator or bureaucrat would *probably* be okay, but I'm no longer a steward so I can't say for certain. --Rschen7754 05:35, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • Put a question about this on the Steward noticeboard. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 07:38, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        We rarely have capacity to monitor enwiki's CU/OS logs. (We already have more than enough works to do and enwiki's quantity of log is simply overwhelming.) So, I'd rather see the request coming from either 1. local crat or 2. current local arbitrator. (Disclaimer: Personal opinion.) — regards, Revi 10:10, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        Where is the difference at all and why should we comment? Is it that now "Consideration will be given for activity and actions not publicly logged"? --MF-W 10:52, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        I am not sure you will get much use out of this diff unless you have WikedDiff. From what I can see, the significant changes are removing the requirement for community-requested action, addition of 'not publicly logged actions' as consideration, addition of list discussion participation, specifying that participation at noticeboards should be in relation to the CUOS toolsets, and excepting auditors from these requirements. There is also removal of the audit subcommittee, which I don't see as significant. --Izno (talk) 12:24, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        This was in response to Rob's proposal of an automatic process that would not require a vote of the Committee to remove rights but would instead be a pre-written policy that might need an arbitrator or bureaucrat to certify the request. For getting CU/OS, the two options are community vote or ArbCom motion. For removing it, many wikis do have an inactivity policy option that has been acted on by stewards, though the CU/OS global policies are less clear about how removal works. My question is whether stewards would be okay with the combination of ArbCom appointment, and then ArbCom or inactivity policy for removal. The wikis that do ArbCom CU/OS appointments generally have ArbCom votes for the removals (frwiki, nlwiki, ruwiki, ukwiki). --Rschen7754 19:15, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        (commenting as a Steward). If the policy allows for a single arb (or crat) to make the request at Meta, then I can't see why we wouldn't act on it. With the exception of the very rare emergency, all we are ever doing for en.wiki is implementing your policy QuiteUnusual (talk) 14:50, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        Agreed with QU; ArbCom is the granting authority for CU/OS on enwiki, so we'll enforce whatever policies (save ones that don't meet the minimum standard of the global CU policy) you decide on. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 20:35, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This seems to be saying non-logged actions wil be given “consideration”. I find that rather vague. I’m ok with the idea that not every functionary action is a logged use of the tool, we all know that, but given that for years the committee has been extremely lax in following this policy making it more open to interpretation seems like a step backwards. Will the non logged actions be given the same consideration as logged actions? If I comment five times on email threads does that mean I can just sit back for the next three months or does there still need to be some at least occasional actual tool use? I’m asking because it really is not clear to me. Beeblebrox (talk) 18:28, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I appreciate the reply above. I guess my concern comes down to trusting the committee to exhibit the common sense you refer to, but I can’t think of a way to more explicitly define the relative weight of logged and non-logged actions either. Beeblebrox (talk) 20:21, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Just a note that I love the color coding of changes. Appreciated! spryde | talk 20:25, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • As to the removal process, I really think it needs an overhaul. Or maybe just a simplification. With AUSC gone I think the task could easily be handled by a 2-3 times a year discussion on the arb mailing list, without requiring a formal vote, just a discussion amongst whichever arbs care to monitor the activity levels and act in accordance with them. As you all know, we recently saw an oversighter who was totally inactive in OS activities for about a year before the committee apparently asked them to turn the tool back in, and that was only after I bugged you guys about it via email. With the reduced arbcom workload in recent years I don’t see any reason why this keeps slipping through the cracks. The stats are updated for all to see once a month. Beeblebrox (talk) 20:31, 26 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I think the modifications, in particular the recognition that there are related and crucial activities that do not result in logged actions, are quite important and valuable. It's important that (for example) oversighters be assured that *turning down* an inappropriate request will be considered as much a part of their role as accepting and acting on appropriate requests. There are also some very important discussions about specific requests that occur on the oversighter mailing list that serve (in part) to articulate and reinforce a more standard method of responding to particular requests, and participation from both new and experienced oversighters is very helpful in those discussions. The same holds true for checkusers - saying "no" to requests that aren't appropriate is again an important part of the role. The privacy of our users is important and any actions that affect it should be limited. Thanks, Arbcom, for this updated process. Risker (talk) 02:55, 27 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • I can't comment on how much of an issue it has been in the past, but per usual Risker is right: having activity requirements that are based around positive action taking will encourage taking those actions. A good decline may even be more thoughtful. ~ Amory (utc) 10:42, 27 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • I agree with everything Risker and Amory say. I actually think that answering an OTRS ticket should count the same towards activity levels regardless of whether the action is an oversight/CU, a decline, a request for more information, starting a discussion on the mailing list, or moving the ticket to the correct queue (the enwp oversight queue occasionally gets requests for oversight on other projects, if that project has a OTRS oversight queue we can move the ticket to that queue to be handled by the people who have oversight permission on that wiki). Thryduulf (talk) 11:55, 27 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • As a further comment, I agree with everything Rob has said. User:Lankiveil has not been with us for several months, yet he is still subscribed to functionaries-en per Template talk:Functionaries. We don't know who controls his email account now. There is an editor on that list who was desysopped for inactivity. Think about inactive functionaries' emails (like the ones they use for Wikimedia) being hacked, as may have happened to one current arbitrator a few years ago (though we did not believe that private data was accessed). All the inactive CUs have access to the CheckUser wiki, which has raw IP addresses stored on it, and they are generally subscribed to checkuser-l (a global mailing list which has CheckUsers from across Wikimedia). Besides being able to see all oversighted content (with logging only done at the server level), oversighters can get into the oversight-en-wp queue and have oversight-l access. This is not a good thing. Can't we do something about this? We really need to correct the fuzzy notion that we need to preserve people's access to private data lest we offend them greatly when they are barely using their access. --Rschen7754 06:34, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • The comments about the functionaries list subscribers are valid - I shall highlight this on the list for the list admins. Thryduulf (talk) 12:44, 28 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • One might as well do away with the requirements anyways. But managing the functionaries seems to be a bulk of the committee's business since 2016, so I guess we need a raison d'être for the overhead. --Guerillero | Parlez Moi 05:08, 29 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • I can't speak for before 2018, of course, but I can say that managing the functionaries has made up a very tiny minority of our business this year. ~ Rob13Talk 14:40, 29 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This seems to be another ArbCom policy that is far too bureaucratic for what the situation demands, and that's why it isn't being used. The requirement for notification and follow-up with both the individual and the rest of ArbCom already makes it really boring work that nobody wants to do and therefor nobody does. Instead of making the process more complicated to solve the relatively minor issue of non-actions also being important, just make a simpler standard that takes the fact that many important actions are not logged into account and a simpler system that allows people to actually enforce the policy with less hoops. You aren't actually a court, most of you aren't lawyers, there's no need for the fluff. -- Ajraddatz (talk) 21:14, 29 September 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Clerk request

I wasn't thinking of myself as a party in the current case, but Fred Bauder's submission to the workshop is clearly aimed at making me one, and basically blaming me specifically for the entire affair. I don't buy that but I guess I need to be added as a party now. Beeblebrox (talk) 18:15, 17 November 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'll check with the committee on this and advise. --Cameron11598 (Talk) 20:31, 17 November 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
thanks. Beeblebrox (talk) 23:37, 17 November 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Beeblebrox: the committee has decided to add you as a party, I'll be doing so shortly. --Cameron11598 (Talk) 05:14, 18 November 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

RFC: Discretionary Sanctions review/expiry

Looking over the list of currently authorized Discretionary Sanctions, there's a few there that have been granted quite some time back (particularly those in cases still using the older Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/ naming schematic). Shouldn't the committee be regularly reviewing these prior authorizations and evaluating them on their need? Additionally and/or alternatively, should future authorizations include a sunset clause whereby they automatically expire a given time in the future (say, 24-36 months after Case conclusion or motion issued)? Dax Bane 09:13, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Arbitration Committee has in the past reviewed topic areas where discretionary sanctions are authorized to prune those that are unused or ineffective. I don't think an automatic expiry makes sense—some topic areas are unlikely to become less contentious in the near future. I discussed this a bit in an answer to a question on the ArbCom elections page, there are certainly a few that could be examined to determine if they're still useful: (see question 3). GorillaWarfare (talk) 09:34, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
(edit conflict) I haven't cross referenced that list with the DS that have been issued this year, but there are easily cases where enforcements from 2011 are still being used, and I don't see areas like American Politics settling down in the next two years before the election, nor after. So an automatic sunset clause is not something I'd consider at all. That said, a review every so often is warranted. I haven't gone through the list like I said, but at least once or twice in the past year (maybe two years, my memory isn't great) we have rescinded some DS authorizations that haven't been used at all, otherwise leave them. -- Amanda (aka DQ) 09:35, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Some have been discussed this year somewhere onwiki and although the areas involved are having no problems the editors who are active there said that they thought that was because the DS were working. I wouldn't want to see the Committee removing any without consultation with editors involved in the areas under sanctions. Doug Weller talk 20:12, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The Committee (and members of its clerk team) regularly reviews the topics for which discretionary sanctions have been authorized and rescinds unused topics. Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 20:57, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Arbcom and unanimous decisions

As of time of writing, Arbcom is nearing the end of this ARCA. All arbitrators that have commented have supported the proposed motion. However, I don't understand how this is happening. If we look at the ARCA, there are editors in favor of much heavier sanctions, just like there are editors in favor of lifting all sanctions. If Arbcom were a representative sample of the community, it's natural to expect that Arbcom would also be divided. How, then, can Arbcom possibly be unanimous? Off the top of my head, some possibilities are:

  1. Arbcom isn't representative of the community. I can't think of why this would be the case though, other than the fact that Arbcom members are all admins (which still shouldn't affect how they view the issues in the ARCA).
  2. Arbcom just does what it thinks the community wants. This would be why we have the workshop phase in case requests, and why arbitrators like OR have said they "need to hear from a balanced cross-section of the community" (since if Arbcom doesn't hear from the community it doesn't know what to do).
  3. Arbcom exhibits groupthink. One arbitrator says jump, all the other arbitrators say jump as well. They might ask questions about which feet to push off the ground with, how high to jump, etc, but they all say jump.

I wonder what others thinks of this, because I find it troubling if either #2 or #3 are true. If #2 is true, then arbcom would just be a grand appeal committee whenever consensus isn't clear, which isn't the stated purpose of arbcom (i.e. to resolve disputes the community cannot handle). If #3 is true, then arbcom is less of an impartial committee and more of a first-come-first-served platform where the person that states a clear position first gets his or her way. Banedon (talk) 23:28, 12 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I haven't been following that specific case, but I'm pretty sure there is also number 4: After thinking about it, the Arbs believe that some of the editors who commented were incorrect. It's true, though, that I have seen Proposed Decisions where it looks like whatever a drafting Arb wrote just gets a lot of seemingly tired agreement, instead of some real revision and refinement. --Tryptofish (talk) 23:37, 12 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I would suggest the situation is significantly more complex and I think some of the assumptions being made are incorrect.
The expectation on editors from the community and the Arbitration Committee are different. Both approach the situation with often different goals. For example, editors are free to express their opinion and desires for an outcome without the mandatory restriction of having the best interest of the community in mind. On principle, the Arbitration Committee should consider matters with the best interest of the community in mind, especially over the needs of an individual editor if the situation will impact many.
Editors from the community are not expected to reach a general consensus with each other and come up with a collective solution. It would have been interesting to see all the ARCA editors reach a consensus on a motion and compare it against the one voted on by the committee with the same guidelines. The Arbitration Committee is expected to resolve disputes and a stalemate outcome is not an option. The Arbitration Committee seeks for solutions that will have a high chance of success, often measured by assessing the likelihood of whether the situation will come back to arbitration. I am not sure if all the comments from the community take this into the same consideration, though I think many do.
Two individuals on the committee recused and did not participate in the motion. That mechanism fundamentally alters the composition of who is voting on the motion. The process for the community does not restrict editors in the same way, thereby allowing commentary from individuals with close ties or bias. If the community discussion was restricted to uninvolved members of the community, it might have been a closer comparison, however a profoundly different process and purpose.
You will notice only one motion was put forward instead of nine different versions from each member of the Arbitration Committee. The motion was the product of discussion and compromise among those on the committee who contributed to writing to it. Not everything was included and not everyone was 100% satisfied with the final draft of the motion. We did arrive on one we were all willing to support which is an important distinction. The very function of compromise works to remove outright opposition and allow for something to be passed. Even then, changes were still made during the voting process. For me, there are some parts of the motion I am not certain about, such as the action to remove “general” from the sanction wording in light of positive commitments from TRM. In the end, I provided an overall support because there are things included I do support that outweigh my concerns. I am sure more time would have allowed the motion to be reshaped but the drawn-out timeline of the ARCA should indicate that it was not an easy or quick decision.
You do bring up a good point that ArbCom is not a representative sample of the community. For better or worse, ArbCom has almost always consisted of all well-established administrators. Usually, editors appointed to the community [committee] have edits in the tens of thousands, years of experience, and have involved themselves in the bureaucracy of Wikipedia to a much greater degree than even most administrators (e.g. checkusers, oversighters, bureaucrats, ArbCom clerks, SPI clerks, SPI patrolling admins, OTRS and UTRS experience, etc.). On that point, I think it distances the committee and OR’s comments about the important of hearing from a broad section of the community is critical to helping address that issue. Mkdw talk 19:00, 13 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Given the innumerable flaws with the finally "agreed" wording, and the number of easy loopholes which people will be seeking to exploit now allowed by the last-gasp removal of the word "general", we're going to need to re-visit this one, just a heads-up. The Rambling Man (talk) 22:05, 13 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Mkdw: when you write "a stalemate outcome is not an option", that's not strictly true is it - you could have e.g. a motion that gets passed 5-4 with 2 recusals. The motion that was actually passed implies that *everyone* in Arbcom felt that TRM's behavior was not acceptable, which contradicts the expectation from the ARCA statements that at least some Arbcom members will find TRM's behavior acceptable. There's something unexpected going on here that remains troubling to me. Banedon (talk) 01:31, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
A 5-4 vote would not be a stalemate by definition and I was broadly referring to the expectation on the committee, not the mathematical possibility of a stalemate. The community expects the Arbitration Committee to implement solutions and passing something that significantly divides the committee is not a favourable option when reasonable compromises can be made. While this is not possible all the time, as evident by voting on some cases in particular, the motion proposed and voted upon this time was able to do so. The motion is to be read literally and prescriptively. It does not contain findings on past situations and focuses on implementing new procedures and definitions to resolve future conflicts. For example, if the committee disagreed with the outcome of the AE findings, we could have overturned those actions or completely removed AE from the enforcement process. We did not. I would caution reading into the changes as being commentary on selective past issues. Instead, AE outcomes where the consensus was not clear, or heavily disputed, will go to the committee, not as a means to overturn community outcome consensus (which if there is one will not go to the committee). Rather the motion seeks to address issues raised where the community expressed challenges related to the process. Whether these will be successful or not is to be determined. Mkdw talk 20:08, 17 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Those choosing to comment at a request for clarification and amendment are a self-selected set, and so do not necessarily represent the consensus view of the entire community. Additionally not everyone who supports a given view will add a supporting opinion, as in theory these aren't straw polls and repetition is not necessary, so the relative percentages amongst those who do comment do not necessarily reflect the overall level of support. The arbitration committee has the mandate to find an approach that it believes will benefit the community the most. It isn't rigidly restricted to what the commenters have offered. isaacl (talk) 00:23, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Even if we say that the ARCA statements are from involved editors, the entire case wound up at Arbcom in the first place because uninvolved editors at ANI couldn't reach a consensus, i.e. even uninvolved editors will not agree whether TRM's behavior is acceptable. I don't find this explanation for Arbcom's surprising unanimity satisfactory. Banedon (talk) 01:31, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Just a note that self-selected doesn't mean involved; it's just not necessarily representative of the community as a whole. isaacl (talk) 02:44, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • This is why a lot of the mailing discussions needs to be made public, as many of these harmless deliberations are by no means confidential nor unsuitable for public view, and by being publicly viewable it helps the community to understand how these decisions came to a conclusion, rather than creating an impression that decisions are arbitrary made not reflective of the community discussions that were made. Speaking from experience I think all three points raised by Banedon are true to a certain extent, but to strictly comment on the unanimous decision aspect alone, I don't think that is highly unusual: in other community processes like the RfA there is always some kind of prevalent need to exhibit "conformity" (i.e. if a "respectable" editor vote a certain way, another editor may change their original vote accordingly). I have commented in the past about this rather disturbing trend of "conformity", and to be honest the same trend happens a lot in committee discussions also. Wholly unnecessary. Alex Shih (talk) 02:30, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    • Real consensus (as opposed to the straw poll approach typically followed in English Wikipedia decision-making) is everyone agreeing to something they can live with, even if it isn't completely in alignment with their preferred approach. Consensus can work in a small group setting where there is a strong alignment in goals, and so it's not unusual to see the arbitration committee reach consensus. isaacl (talk) 02:42, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
      • @Isaacl: Yes, but I don't think that was Banedon's point. The problem raised here (I think) is that a unanimous "consensus" was reached when the ARCA discussion was highly divisive. How? From a motion that was posted after weeks of stagnation and suddenly all of the arbs are on board and agreeing with each other. Why? Because it is rather common practice for the committee members to talk exhaustively and privately on the mailing list, and make sure everyone is (mostly) agreeing with each other before anything (especially motions) are posted on wiki. This lack of transparency is unnecessary, unfair to all parties involved, counterproductive and needs to stop. Alex Shih (talk) 04:43, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
        • I was commenting on your interpretation of the consensus result being a consequence of conformity. I don't believe this must be the case. I have commented on the original point elsewhere (and I appreciate that the original poster disagrees). isaacl (talk) 06:17, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
          • I think Isaacl's explanation is a good one, although it still indicates a surprising amount of unanimity among Arbcom (from the ARCA, there are people who don't even think there's a problem in the first place, and it's hard to believe that these people would get on board a sanction, however light). Banedon (talk) 08:33, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • I have trouble following point #2 in the OP - "arbcom is less divided than the community, so maybe it's just doing what the community wants"? But more importantly, I think Mkdw and Isaacl are both exactly right. The dynamics of an open-ended invitation for people to share their views are just inherently different than the dynamics of a defined group that needs to reach a specific decision. You can see this effect at work by comparing the arb views section to the motion, for example. You'll also get a broader range of views if you ask everyone what their favorite thing to eat for dinner is than if you need to make a reservation at a specific restaurant. There's no conspiracy in "well, I'd rather have sushi, but it sounds like a lot of people want Mexican so that's fine". A lot of committee decisions are like that - there's a reason "written by committee" is a recognizable style. Opabinia regalis (talk) 06:58, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    The logic is: if Arbcom isn't a committee that grants the wishes of the community, why would it need to hear from the community? I will edit this into the OP. Also, the situation you describe is what I'm afraid of. You go from eating sushi to eating Mexican. That's completely different isn't it? In the case of this ARCA, where are the motions for imposing harsher sanctions as well as the motions for lifting all sanctions? Sure, perhaps neither would've passed, but it's not like these don't have precedent, e.g. [5] Banedon (talk) 08:33, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Sorry, I don't follow that logic at all. Surely there are reasons we might want to hear from the community other than 'granting wishes'? We're a handful of people; we can't possibly observe everything directly. Often people make good suggestions for solutions, but what's always valuable in cmmunity comments on any topic is information.
    What I wanted was to eat dinner with friends, which is what I got by choosing to eat fish tacos instead of sitting all by myself with my sad tuna roll. Your link is to a proposed decision in a case, which is a bit different, but not too much - sometimes the only way to get a decision is to post a stack of alternatives and count noses, but IMO it's not usually the best way. It artificially constrains the apparent options and it sometimes makes a collaborative process seem unnecessarily adversarial. Opabinia regalis (talk) 09:44, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Yes, you want information, but that comes under the evidence page - not workshop. As for fish tacos and tuna rolls, as mentioned, this motion implies TRM's behavior is not acceptable. The people who find TRM's behavior acceptable are unlikely to ever agree to this motion. By the ARCA, such editors exist. Where are they on Arbcom then? Are you saying that you/someone persuaded them that TRM's behavior is not acceptable? Or are you saying that these editors are a minority who elected to conform with the majority so that they can eat fish tacos instead of tuna rolls? Banedon (talk) 12:01, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Something that Alex Shih said seems to me to be worth coming back to. I've long had the feeling that there are a lot of mailing list discussions that really do not need to be confidential, because no personal information is involved, that are constructed around making sure that members are in agreement before posting a motion or decision on-site. I can understand the human tendency to want to avoid showing dirty laundry, but I think the community might be better served if there were more transparency there. It's OK to let the community see more of the sausage-making, and could well increase rather than decrease trust. --Tryptofish (talk) 21:13, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I fear there would be a loss of frankness in discussion if they were held in public. (A story follows; for the sake of everyone involved, I ask that no one try to figure out any of the editor identities.) A few years ago, I copy edited an article to remove what I felt to be extraneous material, and to strengthen the writing. The edits were quickly reverted by an editor, and so I went through every single change and explained my reasoning, and the editor accepted all of the changes without any discussion. Why did this happen? Well, another editor suggested it was a desire to keep the article within the expansion requirement for Did You Know? articles. The editor promptly protested that this failed to assume good faith, and so we stopped discussing it. If the arbitration committee were to hold all of their deliberations in public (excluding matters of privacy), it may be unable to frankly discuss editor motivations based on its best interpretations of editor behaviour. I do not believe this would be helpful in devising the best way forward in contentious situations. The ability to explore different possibilities is needed, and striving to avoid upsetting anyone can hinder this. isaacl (talk) 22:53, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I don't see it as being as "either/or" as that, and I certainly would not argue that everything should be discussed publicly. There is a difference between discussing whether a user is trustworthy (perhaps better discussed privately) and whether a particular wording would cover all that it needs to cover, and I think members of the Committee can tell the difference. --Tryptofish (talk) 23:19, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I didn't get the sense from the previous commenters that they were only interested in how the final wording is shaped. In the past, some drafting arbitrators used the workshop to hammer out wording details. Perhaps this could be made the default practice? isaacl (talk) 00:11, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I was thinking more in terms of the general case, rather than the specific one here. As for the Workshop, I agree enthusiastically that this is a good way to go, at least in terms of crafting Proposed Decisions (only one part of what ArbCom does, so it addresses only a part of what I was talking about, albeit a significant part). It's been discussed a lot, including in candidate statements in the just-completed election, and it pretty much comes down to whether the Drafting Arbs actually do it. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:26, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I think it would be cumbersome to take conversations offline each time an editor's motivations were being discussed to build a line of reasoning. It would break up the flow between online and offline discussions. I think a certain amount of discussion has to happen offline, to isolate the dimensions of the problem and what goals need to be achieved. After this, there is more opportunity for open discussion. However, I also think arbitrators should not have to try to defend every proposal they make against the entire English Wikipedia community. They should feel free to make proposals to be shot down by other arbitrators, as part of an open brainstorming process. Since the questions above seem to be about how did the arbitration committee reach their stated conclusion, one idea is for the committee, after the case decision, to publish case notes on its thought processes that led to the decision. I suspect, though, that the added overhead makes this difficult to put into practice. isaacl (talk) 00:49, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    It's possible to overthink this. I'm just saying that more can be discussed on-wiki. --Tryptofish (talk) 00:52, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I agree more can be discussed on-wiki. The tricky part, though, is what to change in the process to make this happen without unduly hindering effectiveness? isaacl (talk) 00:57, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    It's not a question of needing new processes or rules. Just a matter of sometimes choosing to post in public. And that can be chosen more frequently. --Tryptofish (talk) 01:03, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    The question is where? We talked about posting proposals during the workshop, and you said this only covers a part of what you were talking about. Should there be a section in the workshop for deliberations? (That's what I mean by a change to the existing process.) isaacl (talk) 03:17, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Talk pages. --Tryptofish (talk) 18:48, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Also, the sections for "Comments by Arbitrators" that are on all case pages. --Tryptofish (talk) 20:01, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    The Comments by Arbitrators sub-sections are associated with specific evidence, proposals, and so forth. Talk pages are wide open for anyone to interject, which is fine for some discussions. Does that cover everything you were thinking of? I thought you wanted some of the deliberations amongst the arbitrators to be made public, but if not, I agree that no new sections are needed. isaacl (talk) 21:23, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    Yes, it's really just as simple as that. Sometimes, make use of those discussions instead of keeping it on email. --Tryptofish (talk) 21:28, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I'm intrigued by the case notes suggestion, though I suspect you're right that it would probably be a lot of overhead. I also think publishing detailed reasoning after a case has closed has limited utility—while it offers insight into the collective thought process, there's no way for people to meaningfully respond if they disagree with something unless they open an ARCA. I personally like the idea of utilizing the workshop pages more when possible, and am planning to make an effort to do that. GorillaWarfare (talk) 01:07, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    The motivation of a set of case notes after the decision is to provide insight into the possibilities considered and not selected, without having the entire discussion in public and having people respond to your every thought along the way. Another idea is to issue regular progress notes on the latest status of deliberations. I am a bit wary of opening things too much. Like everyone else, I too like to weigh in when I think the arbitrators are spinning their wheels in the wrong direction, but I also recognize that the arbitrators need space to come to their own conclusions without having to worry about back seat drivers demanding attention constantly. isaacl (talk) 03:29, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    I don't think it's likely the ArbCom would post case notes without people wishing to comment on them—inevitably, someone will take issue with something (a perceived flaw, oversight, etc.) and want to address it. GorillaWarfare (talk) 05:50, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    It's just a question of when you want the feedback. If you want it during the case deliberations, then by all means let's have progress notes. I think having regular updates would help ease concerns about the range of evidence and options the arbitrators consider during their discussions. isaacl (talk) 21:23, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
    When the motion was proposed, the proposer said it was the best solution we could find. Rightly or not, I assumed this linked to off-wiki discussion about the motion. Alex Shih has asked more than once whether the matter was discussed privately, but not received an answer. I agree it would help in this case to understand where the sausage was made. AGK ■ 23:53, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Though you linked to me, I didn't propose it, I was merely the first who voted for it. Certainly it reflected off-wiki discussion. As Mkdw has already said above, " The motion was the product of discussion and compromise among those on the committee who contributed to writing to it. Not everything was included and not everyone was 100% satisfied with the final draft of the motion. We did arrive on one we were all willing to support which is an important distinction." How much clearer could this have been said? What I said in my comment reflects this. I'm not sure that anyone was completely satisfied, but after discussion, nobody had anything better to suggest. The role of arb com is to resolve disputes, which means we must somehow come up with a decision. DGG ( talk ) 00:37, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I proposed it but DGG's comment is pretty accurate. There were around 100 emails in the Committee's deliberations on what the problems were and what we could do to fix it. Like it or not the format and method of onwiki discussion is not conducive that that amount of traffic (often overlapping, read edit conflict) nor to the ease of using email over needing to log in from a device (likely a mobile device) and edit a 270 kilobyte page. While I absolutely agree that it has its downfall (particularly around transparency), it is the most time and effort-effective method of coming to a Committee decision. It's also worth considering that, in the past, the Committee has been criticised for not being a cohesive group able to come to a decision and having multiple proposals that don't go anywhere. Finding a happy middle ground is difficult and in this instance there ended up being a reasonable amount of discussion in the arb's section before a motion was proposed. I think it's important for the Committee to be more willing to explain decision making processes in public; however, in complex cases, such as this, email is the most time effective method for the Committee to discuss possible options and develop a consensus, the mechanics of onwiki discussion just don't allow for it as simply. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:02, 16 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The ARCA of The Rambling Man presented a simple problem: how to amend the ineffective wording of its principal sanction. 35,000 words of debate were heard prior to bringing a motion. Given the narrow scope and exhaustive on-wiki discussion, is dysfunction or ineffectiveness by the committee indicated by the fact only one motion emerged? I wouldn't agree it is. AGK ■ 23:45, 14 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Seeing the ongoing discussion at WT:ACN, it continues to amaze me how some of the community can approve of the ARCA (in spirit if not the exact text), some disapprove, and yet Arbcom are unanimous. Banedon (talk) 21:07, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Requests to arbitrators

With the aim of improving communications with the English Wikipedia community, can you consider the following requests?

  • Can you strive to use the case pages as much as possible to comment on submitted evidence, analyses, and proposals, as well as for your own analyses and proposals? There will naturally be some discussions that are better held in private to avoid undue disruption, such as investigating various possibilities for findings related to editor motivations.
  • Can you issue regular progress notes, particularly during periods where there is little on-wiki activity, to help keep the community aware of the ongoing progress in the case?

Any other initiatives you choose to pursue to help improve collaboration with the community are welcome. isaacl (talk) 21:49, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Committee does try to do this but I problem we face is that there is always a lot going on so things which take time and take away from consensus building tend to fall off the list. Over the time I've been involved with the Committee both as a clerk and arb, it's been pretty clear that some Committees do better at public communication than others. It's generally due to the individuals on the Committee at the time, some arbs are more willing, and have the time, to engage community members in public discussion whereas others focus on the behind the scenes discussion and consensus building in order to come to a solution which will be supported by a majority. Keep in mind as well that public discussion are always going to take longer due to the mechanics of onwiki discussion but also that arbs will need to spend more time responding to community members rather than each other. Given that the time it takes the Committee to come to a decision is, generally, the main area of complaint, it's likely that future Committees will place a greater emphasis on faster and more effective email discussion than slower and more laborious onwiki discussion. Over the year, this Committee has also been better at keeping the community updated on the progress in each case. That always depends, however, on the time and priorities of the arbitrators drafting a case decision, sometimes they give heaps of updates other times they need to use the limited Wikipedia time they have to review evidence and workshop proposals and to draft a decision. Callanecc (talkcontribslogs) 10:01, 16 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree that greater engagement with the community will require more time, and so the community will have to agree to be more patient if it wants more ongoing interaction. (I tried to cover this in the requests to the community section but forgot about counseling patience.) It's also why I tried to isolate some specific areas where more on-wiki comments could occur that would not result in a completely open conversation (such as greater use of the talk pages, for example, which could quickly turn into a thicket of multiple threads). Although the volume of incoming email has to be dealt with regardless of where the discussion occurs, using email does linearize the conversation, so all new comments can be readily found, as opposed to on-wiki discussions. I appreciate the practicalities of email conversation and time constraints (I would have gone into it in greater detail than I had in the discussion thread above, but thought it would be better to let the arbitrators speak for themselves). Nonetheless, perhaps some thought can be given to these proposals (perhaps in addition to a drafting arbitrator, a liaison could be named for a case), or for other ones you can devise to allow for more connection between the larger community and the arbitration committee. isaacl (talk) 17:06, 16 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Another idea I had: assign a liaison/community representative for each case from one of the candidates who finished with 60%+ support in the recent election but was not elected to a seat. Having passed the 60%+ threshold, they have received sufficient trust to be included on emails, but they would not participate in any private discussions. The liaison would have the task of issuing progress updates. (This might have to wait until after the 2019 elections, though, so the ground rules on who will be seeing the arbitration committee deliberations would be known ahead of time.) isaacl (talk) 17:38, 16 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Upon further reflection, I'd suggest that the pool of potential liaisons include the arbitration committee plus other candidates who finished with 60%+ support (or I suppose 50%+ support if an arbitrator with 50%+ support had been appointed). The liaison for a given case can be chosen from the entire pool, contingent on their availability. The extended pool would provide additional resources if needed to assist with providing updates. isaacl (talk) 17:54, 16 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My first reaction is that that sounds like kind of an unpleasant job - having to try to explain and illuminate decisions you couldn't participate in - especially if offered as an also-ran slot to people who explicitly did volunteer to participate. No, I feel pretty strongly about that one; the people who made the decisions have the responsibility to communicate those decisions, and creating another layer of intermediary bureaucracy in between wouldn't be a positive step. (With no criticism meant to the actual clerks, I feel somewhat the same way about the concept of clerkitude.)
All that said, I tend to write some pretty long-ass posts about arb business, and I tend to justify my tldr habit to myself by claiming it's useful to express my thought process in some detail, and as far as I can tell there's not much demand for more of that kind of stuff - if anything, I have the impression that lengthy, discursive thinking-out-loud is taking up too much conversational space as it is. Opabinia regalis (talk) 06:27, 17 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Opabinia regalis: Re your last sentence, I know the feeling. Regards, Newyorkbrad (talk) 20:15, 17 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think all victims of Arbcom are looking for is transparency and commonality. The "clarification" to my most recent case involved an Arb making a last-gasp modification to the wording because of some chatter on the "mailing list", midway through voting, and it was thus writ. That, I'm afraid, is utter bollocks, and shameful. Especially since that last-gap modification has resulted in complete and enhanced ambiguity, which I believe the original purpose of the case was designed to eradicate. Diastrous doesn't really cover it, but it's close. The clarification request to the clarification request will be filed soon, and this committee's legacy (which I had originally thought to be okay since it was relatively anonymous) keeps on giving. High-five to Brad for the in-jokes. Perhaps that's now blockable for me now? Who actually knows? The Rambling Man (talk) 20:24, 17 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In-jokes: also not blockable. At least not as AE. Opabinia regalis (talk) 06:32, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My preference would be for an arbitrator to issue progress updates; I was just brainstorming ideas for offloading the work. Progress notes wouldn't be an exposition of anyone's thoughts or reasoning; it would just provide insight into the current state of deliberations. isaacl (talk) 23:05, 17 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I suspect it's a view-from-within-the-bubble thing but I don't know what the "current state of deliberations" would be other than people sharing their opinions about whatever the issue is and what they see as the key aspects of it/why their colleagues are wrong (which seems a lot like... deliberating :) Otherwise it seems too bare to be useful. "There are currently 32 emails over 2 threads about this subject"? I would find people's thought process more interesting than their schedule/plans/state of their inbox, but obviously I'm biased. Opabinia regalis (talk) 06:32, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I didn't want to be too prescriptive in order to give the arbitration committee some flexibility; here are some ideas I had in mind. When there is clear progress visible from the on-wiki discussion, then I think that can generally speak for itself. If there isn't much activity going on, then indications of what areas are being discussed may be helpful. Are basic principles still being established, or are they mostly settled? (Obviously they can be revisited; this is just a snapshot-of-the-moment update.) Are findings still being discussed? Are there particular large issues still being discussed to be resolved, or have the basic bones been established and the committee is working out finer details? If sanctions are being discussed, have the specific behaviours to be prevented or improved been isolated, and if so, what are they? Basically, provide an indication of how much work remains in the various steps of analyzing the case, and highlight any areas where the committee would appreciate input. With this knowledge, the community can better weigh how to direct their feedback effectively. isaacl (talk) 19:07, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I very much appreciate the intention here, but I think it would be best to avoid being prescriptive. The way I see it, it's more like: "ArbCom, wherever it makes sense to you, please give the community more of your thinking, at places like noticeboards, talk pages, and Arbitrator Comments sections. Thanks." --Tryptofish (talk) 21:21, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, that was indeed my original intent, which is why the proposal doesn't provide specific details. But at the behest of Opabinia regalis, I provided some examples. isaacl (talk) 23:34, 19 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Requests to community

I appreciate many editors will continue to be dissatisfied with the arbitration committee, because almost inevitably dispute resolution leaves some people discontent with the process. I acknowledge there are a lot of imperfections in the process that are unfair and we ought to strive to reduce this as much as possible. So while I completely understand if you choose not to accede to the following requests, I submit them as something to think about.

  • Due to the wide number of commenters and limits on available time, it's highly likely some comments will not get addressed directly by the arbitrators, even if you thought they were deserving of a response. Please try to assume your comments were indeed considered in any case.
  • While additional communication is great, it adds complexity in responding to comments and pondering different viewpoints. To lighten the load, thereby increasing the chance your comments will get due consideration, please make your comments concise, and consider refraining from commenting if someone else has already covered most of what you want to say.
  • Editors can disagree with you while still having considered and understood your arguments. Please avoid prolonging discussion by simply repeating your arguments.

Asking for additional trust from the arbitrators is a two-way street: the community should in turn trust its comments are appreciated and taken into account. Having more arbitrator conversations in public should not be an opportunity to reiterate points already made, or to command actions from the arbitrators. The community should endeavour to keep the process moving forward as smoothly as possible. isaacl (talk) 23:25, 15 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I want to stress that I didn't start this thread because of the things you mention. I don't hate the ARCA, I just think it's extremely optimistic (should be said as well that 'optimistic' usually carries positive connotations). It's just that the decision was unanimous when I did not expect it to be. Something similar is the religious makeup of the US Congress. Roughly 18% of US adults have no religion; however all but one member of Congress is religious. Different people will interpret that differently, but I remember one author saying that this is impossible, and some members of Congress must have lied about their religion to get elected. I want to know if the same thing is happening here, if there are arbitrators who being affected by subconscious bias without realizing it, etc. Banedon (talk) 00:30, 16 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I appreciate your statement; this subsection (and the one above) is a followup to the thread on more public discussion, rather than your original post. Perhaps I should have started a separate section; my apologies. isaacl (talk) 03:17, 16 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Question concerning DS appeals

The rules say that DS appeals can be made at either AE or AN, but is the form of the appeal meant to be different at each venue, or is the only difference meant to be the venue used? The standard appeal form - which is most often used on AE, but is also utilized when filing an appeal at AN - calls for the "Result of the appeal" section to be used by admins only, but is that the case when the appeal is made at AN?

I ask because non-admins are posting their opinions about the FkpCascais appeal currently at AN in the "Results" section, [6] and some, indeed, have expressed distress that some previous non-admin comments there have been moved (by me) to the "Discussion among uninvolved editors" section.

So, is the intention that the two different venues provide two different "juries" (so to speak), admins at AE versus all editors at AN, or is the intention simply that AN is a more highly trafficked page than AE, providing more opinions in the "Uninvolved discussion" section for an appeal posted at AN, but that the discussion about "Results" should be the same in both venues, limited to admins only? Beyond My Ken (talk) 22:01, 27 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

@Beyond My Ken: Wikipedia:Arbitration_Committee/Discretionary_sanctions#Appeals_and_modifications says that an appeal is successful if agreed to by "the clear and substantial consensus of (a) uninvolved administrators at AE or (b) uninvolved editors at AN". Thus, my reading is that the "juries" are different: uninvolved administrators at AE, uninvolved editors at AN. Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 22:28, 27 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thanks. In that case, perhaps a form to be specifically used at AN, different from the one to be used at AE, would be a good idea. Beyond My Ken (talk) 22:47, 27 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
AN is less proceduralised than AE. I've always presumed that AN lacks a format for appeals by design, not for want of one… To your case of FkpCascais, I think AE's form is ill-suited to AN. Certainly the editors/admins distinction should not appear there at all. AGK ■ 14:03, 30 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You;re right that the form is not well-suited to AN. Perhaps the doc for the template should say something about using it on AE only, if there's not an alternate looser template got AN? Beyond My Ken (talk) 00:11, 31 December 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Mediation Committee

The following is on Wikipedia:Arbitration/Policy#Admissibility_of_evidence and since Mediation Committee no longer exists should probably be removed: "Evidence from official mediation is only admissible with the express prior written consent of the Mediation Committee." Best, Barkeep49 (talk) 21:16, 9 January 2019 (UTC) Reply[reply]

Since I was asked by a clerk - I am aware this would take a committee motion. If this was the wrong place to suggest such housekeeping, apologies, and I hope a clerk could assist me by moving it to the correct place or telling me where I should properly do so. Best, Barkeep49 (talk) 21:24, 9 January 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]
FYI, the policy actually can't be amended by the committee acting alone – amendments have to be ratified by the community, with at least 100 editors in favor. Kevin (aka L235 · t · c) 21:39, 9 January 2019 (UTC)