Wikiquote talk:Requests for adminship/Archives/2008
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Length of discussions
see Wikiquote:Requests_for_adminship#Poetlister_.28talk_.C2.B7_contributions.29 Kalki suggested this should run 2 weeks. Aphaia has suggested that how long to run it should be discussed here, so I'm starting a thread. I already expressed that I am not sure I see why this needs to run longer, it seems to set a bad precedent perhaps. ++Lar: t/c 16:41, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
- I've been discussing this RFB with Poetlister, JeffQ, Aphaia. My thinking is that it is better for Poetlister for all concerns to be addressed so her 'cratship will be uncontroversial. If some of the established members of the Community want a longer discussion, then I think we need to listen to their concerns to understand why. Process is alway less important than getting the best outcome. FloNight♥♥♥ 17:22, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
- I agree with FloNight that it is probably better if whatever concerns still exist are completely run to ground before this discussion is ended. I have reserved judgment myself to allow some of this to occur. While I am not inclined to oppose Poetlister, I wanted to at least wait until these side investigations were completed. In the end, what difference does it make if it takes a bit longer in what I see as a special case? I would rather that everyone is satisfied before granting such a role. Again, I do not have anything against Poetlister, and in fact see her as a solid admin based on her work this past year, but I would rather that everyone is sure before we conclude this matter. ~ UDScott 18:42, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
It's very simple. With an AfD, we have a week. If an admin cannot determine a consensus, he/she may extend it by a week. We should have the same rule for RfAs and RfBs. Anyway, I doubt that we will have another RfB in the near future.--Cato 21:15, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
- I suggested 2 weeks as a mild precaution, because Bureaucrat tools are not so frequently required as admin tools, potentially far more dangerous, and with an awareness that it is sometimes easy for even many of the more active editors to sometimes miss the fact that there is even a nomination in progress for several days.
I am less inclined to oppose the nomination than previously, now that there have been some strong assurances of confidence given by a steward, but I still would wish the matter to be more clearly resolved. There were not only accusations but actions taken at Wikipedia, and though where the greatest fault lies cannot be clearly known from the facts available to us, I could not have been comfortable in granting Poetlister bureaucrat status without past issues being addressed more extensively than they initially were. If in the end there are no stronger objections or concerns other than those I believe entirely valid and appropriate to have raised, I might support the nomination, though I continue to feel there is no pressing need to rush to a decision. ~ Kalki 22:23, 7 February 2008 (UTC)
- I concur with BD2412. It is fine to me, specially if the community is going to support. RFA for one week at least, RFB for two weeks at least. It sounds me a good precaution. Not only for this case, but for all the future cases. For possible extension procedure, I would give more time and thought before expressing my idea. --Aphaia 06:31, 8 February 2008 (UTC)
BTW, I didn't notice that there was anything said here about nominations for CheckUser status. For the record, it appears that across the Wikimedia projects, CU-granting discussions are open-ended to give the communities sufficient time to collect the necessary minimum participation levels (regardless of the balance between support and opposition). This is also important because there must always be a minimum of two CUs on a project, if they have any CUs, to allow them to check each other's work. Therefore, it's important to allow the project enough time to replace any CUs that are cutting back or resigning (as is happening here and now). Some projects can take many weeks to accumulate enough input from the community on these crucial questions. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 18:42, 18 March 2008 (UTC)
- I agree to set it open-ended, but at the same time for the balance of other types of requests, I think it reasonable to set a minimum length of review. It must be at least one week long. I prefer to keep it open at least two weeks, since CU results may have greater impacts than b'crat access (the former touch directly private information and cannot be reversed). Also, if we set it open-ended, we need to determine who to close the request (a normal admin is okay? The requesters themselves are okay? etc). --Aphaia 12:16, 21 March 2008 (UTC)
- I've gotten some input offline that this discussion might be perceived as changing the rules in the middle of a discussion. That's not the intent. Rather, we are discussing how to identify existing practices and accomodate situations that don't necessarily fit into them. I pointed out above that existing Wikimedia practice seems to be for CU-granting discussions not to have a predefined closure date. We have no maximum-time policy on any discussions that I'm aware of except for WQ:VFD (and even that is more by implication than any formal decision to make it a maximum). It should be obvious to anyone familiar with CheckUser discussions that, outside of en:WP, a one- or even two-week limit would be inadequate, so following general practice is wise.
- Aphaia's suggestion that any admin can close a CU-rights discussion is merely codifying our existing practice. Cbrown1023, an admin who does not have bureaucrat or other privileged status, closed both Aphaia and my candidacies. I would suggest that allowing the nominator to close the discussion would be generally reasonable, since we must have at least 25 votes for a positive conclusion anyway. But I would oppose allowing a self-nominator to close a discussion. This is not saying anything against Cato, our current CU candidate, but is rather based on growing concerns of the appearance of conflicts of interest. (I'll be darned if I can remember where these concerns have been expressed, though. I must be getting senile. Can anyone provide a link?)
- As for a minimum discussion time, if we figure that the greater responsibility of a bureaucrat makes a two-week minimum wise, then we could hardly make it less for a CheckUser, who has special restrictions and powers that are sensitive enough to require Foundation approval. However, this is not our current practice, so we can't really set this for Cato's discussion. Frankly, I was somewhat bothered when our ever-helpful Cbrown1023 closed my discussion only 86 minutes after I'd achieved 25 votes. In the future, I'd like to have a minimum.
- Based on existing practice, however, I've just closed Cato's candidacy as "community approved". I've also made a bit more of a formal statement with useful links to help guide future CU-closers, since CU candidacies are and probably will remain infrequent. I suggest that once Cato gets CU authority, we note that in the discussion for completeness. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 17:12, 21 March 2008 (UTC)
I made two changes on "instruction". I think it goes along the discussion on the above, so expect it is okay. Please review my edits and give your feedback, if any. --Aphaia 01:23, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
- I made a few corrections of style and grammar. I also removed the words "In principle"; we require admins to have e-mails.--Poetlister 20:07, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
- Thanks for refining. I agree on your additions as well as removal of "in principle". --Aphaia 23:46, 29 February 2008 (UTC)
Procedures for debates on Checkuser status
I propose the following rules:
- The vote shall remain open for seven full days, or for 24 hours after the 25th support vote has been cast, whichever is longer.
- The vote may then be declared closed by any administrator, except for the candidate [and the proposer, if not a self-nom?]
- No notice shall be placed on Meta Requests for Permissions until the vote is closed.
- The notice may be placed by the candidate, the proposer, the closer or a bureaucrat.
Do we need some closure mechanism? If there is no opposition but the votes are just coming in slowly, we should leave the debate open for as long as it takes to get the necessary 25 votes. However, what do we do if it is clear that there is too much opposition for the candidacy to succeed? I suggest that a bureaucrat be allowed to close as a fail after at least 14 days.--Cato 11:51, 24 March 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for bringing it up. Generally fine to me.
- To 2. I reminded me we have no restriction now for checkuser candidates. Even if it is redundant, can we like say "only admins or retired admins without dispute may apply"?
- To 3. Restriction on the proposer looks like a good idea.
- To 4. Hmm Meta:RFP says nothing, but its another section (about removal of access) says "a trusted person from that wiki should provide a link here to the discussion" ... so do we need to restrict the person as proposed? I think we can safely say here ".... the closer or an admin" as well as closer clause.
Thoughts? --Aphaia 04:27, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
- Hmmm Closure. I agree a b'crat can say to close it, but doubt if we need 14 days. You reminded me another possible case ... both oppositions and supports come slowly. The policy says "consensus (at least 70%-80%) ". So in some cases "after 24 hours after the 25th vote come" may be equal to say it fails.
- We need to regulate when and how we declare a request fails perhaps? One problem is that we set no such a condition for regular sysop access request either yet ... --Aphaia 04:40, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
- I want to be more logic-driven than case-driven here if possible. Several of us made or supported arguments to keep a bureaucrat nomination open for 2 weeks during Poetlister's candidacy. I believe that was half because we (or maybe just I) had vainly hoped to have a speedy and positive resolution to the effort to clear her on Wikipedia (although I'm not yet aware of a resolution, which may be more my failure to finish my own follow-up than any reflection on her). But from a logical point of view, we should either ratify two weeks as a good idea, or decide it's not necessary and apologize to her for dropping it into the middle of her b'crat candidacy.
- If we decide on a 2-week minimum for b'crat discussions, then any more serious rights assignments would seem to warrant a similar period. I wouldn't have thought this would be an issue for CU, but I was surprised that it took us less than two weeks to accumulate 25 votes for each of our three discussions thus far. I've said elsewhere that I'm not very happy that some of our votes — in all three CU discussions — came from folks who have done little work on Wikiquote. Even though most (all?) of those relative outsiders have been experienced Wikimedians, it's my understanding that it's the hosting community that is expected to support or reject CU candidates. If we're going to formalize CU discussions, perhaps we need to examine this more closely. Or perhaps the community will continue to accept a handful of votes from these relative outsiders (which so far has been good for the candidates, but could be bad for anyone who might be respected in our community but have strong opposition from other communities). Either way, I want it acknowledged that this is how we've been getting our minimums to date.
- To those who might object to changing conditions, I would point out that this is a natural evolution of practice and policy, so long as we get a credible consensus from the community. Our newer admins received more solid support than our oldest ones in part because there are many more active editors now than in the earlier days. I would agree, though, that we should be more careful about appearing to change the rules during any active candidacies. At the same time, I would want us not to feel that we couldn't address gaps in practice or policy when they arise during a discussion, as this is our typical way to deal with problems as they come up. Both Poetlister (in her b'crat self-nomination) and Cato (in his CU self-nomination) have had reason to object to some of this on-the-fly policy refining, so we owe it to them and to future candidates to try to be more careful about serving real policy needs without seeming to throw extra hurdles in anyone's path.
- Having said that general stuff, my specific responses to Cato's proposed rules are:
- As I said above, I believe our minimum span for CU should be at least what it is for bureaucrat discussions, but I see no reason to have more than a 2-week minimum. My main concern is that we don't give an opposing admin an excuse to close a discussion too early for lack of votes (although this is purely theoretical at this point). I'd be happy to have discussions open for a month or two if we needed that to get enough community participation on this critical right.
- If we believe we need admins to close VfDs (as I do, primarily to have community-trusted people to handle this responsibility and take the heat for any problems), we should have this requirement for rights-granting discussions as well, and definitely for CU candidacies. I prefer not to allow the candidate to seem too eager by closing their own discussion, whether it's a self-nomination or not. (They can always close it by withdrawing, of course, but it just seems to me to be wise to allow one of the 25+ supporters, or even an opposer, to close a discussion that ratifies community support.) Just as with VfDs, I'd prefer that the nominator not close the discussion unless the consensus is clear. So far, this hasn't remotely been an issue, but again, I want logic and prudence as much as experience to inform our policies.
- I think it's advisable to hold off notifying the stewards at m:RFP#CheckUser access until we have a formal closure. This is not mandated in the instructions at Meta, but it just seems prudent.
- I agree that there should be a link to the closed discussion, but I see no reason why the candidate can't do that themselves after the discussion was closed by someone else. I believe Cato acted within policy and in good faith by his posting before a formal close, so if we take care of any appearance of haste or conflict of interest in the closure, we should have no need to have someone else do this step. (Meta seems to have no problem with anyone else doing it, either, but since the candidate must notify the Foundation of their identity and confirm they've done this on Meta, they should not be prevented from doing both in a single post.)
- Having said that general stuff, my specific responses to Cato's proposed rules are:
- I wrote these detailed comments because I'll be offline most of the next two weeks, and I'm hoping that all this will adequately represent my opinions in the face of future discussion I can't participate in. I hope many others will chime in on this important discussion so we can work toward a solid consensus. ~ Jeff Q (talk) 07:04, 25 March 2008 (UTC)
- I'm not sure that we need any restrictions on candidates. If a non-admin stands and the community decided to trust him, why shouldn't they? I read somewhere that there is a wiki with a checkuser who isn't an admin, but I can't find it now.--Yehudi 12:45, 25 March 2008 (UTC)