Players only love you when they're playing,
Say... Women... they will come and they will go;
When the rain washes you clean... you'll know.
I've just noticed that you went and cleaned up the tags on the WorkChoices quotes page, thank you very much for that. I did the list in a hurry so your help is greatly appreciated. Ed- 07:02, 18 July 2006 (UTC)
I've made it back home after attending the Wikimania conferences, and to the extent I have the time within the next week or so I will try to find a few quotes to post from the available material, including some recordings I made there. There were several events and addresses I wanted to attend but missed because I couldn't be two places at once. I'm pretty sure that I will be able to add at least a bit to the Ward Cunningham, Larry Lessig, and David Weinberger pages and maybe a few others, and might find some usable photos to post to the Commons. ~ Rumour 14:31, 7 August 2006 (UTC)
Rumour and Reality
Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.
~ Laozi as interpreted by Stephen Mitchell ~
Poetry is an ethic.
By ethic I mean a secret code of behavior, a discipline constructed and conducted according to the capabilities of a man who rejects the falsifications of the categorical imperative.
~ Jean Cocteau ~
This is a slightly revised and much shortened version of an email message that I am sending out to a few of the people who seem involved in some recent matters of concern at Wikipedia, Wikiquote and the Commons and elsewhere with some SUL accounts I recently created and with some IP addresses which I have regularly used:
When recent suspicions against some of my activities began I almost immediately was reminded of an old Twilight Zone' episode by Rod Serling, where a malicious influence releases the destructive capacities of people against each other: "The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street." It ends with the statement:
- There are weapons that are simply thoughts, ideas, prejudices, to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill and suspicion can destroy. A thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all it's own for the children and the children yet unborn. And the pity of it is, is that these things can not be confined to the Twilight Zone.
I also kept in mind a saying:
- There are, strictly speaking, no enlightened people, there is only enlightened activity. ~ Shunryu Suzuki
I am posting this message as "Rumour" and am stating that I have been a long-time contributor to the Wikimedia projects, under various names. I hope to be a recognized as a good Rumour who helps reveal the good in most people, and who is opposed to the efforts of those who would confusedly and confusingly exaggerate and magnify the worst in anyone or any group of people for any reasons which they might believe they have.
I have also edited as Accountability, and hold myself fully accountable for all of my own actions, but not for other people's impressions of them.
I would like to state that I actually was a witness to the birth of WIkipedia, in its very first days as it emerged from the earlier effort to create Nupedia all those years ago. I had always thought Nupedia was far too restrictive in its policies, and recognized immediately that Wikipedia was a much better idea which would take off and be a success in ways Nupedia never could, but I actually didn't become much involved with editing of any of the Wikimedia projects until 2003. I consider them all very worthy projects which I would never seek to harm or disrupt.
Recently I have been very busy juggling many online and offline activities and tasks, and even now do not feel I have all the time I would like to address the recent highly distressing confusions regarding some of my recently created SUL accounts and those of an obnoxious twerp who vandalizes the projects, but feel it is time to begin doing so, before the situation decays even further.
Contrary to the apparent motives of vandals and trolls, I would much rather go about mostly unnoticed in making good and useful contributions to the wikis, and have absolutely no desire to attain any of the pathetic notoriety trolls and vandals do through edits aimed at being a disruptive nuisance to other people.
Over the past few days I have only had brief periods of time to attend to matters happening on the wiki projects, and my thoughts on recent confusions have been various and somewhat scattered as I typed them up at various times. I have just gathered up and tweaked some of the more significant statements now, and leave the rest as ideas which are not of immediate importance in the matter.
I actually do believe that when one actually witnesses unusual activity, one should be suspicious — but not presumptive, and that when vandalism actually occurs one should often feel free to "block first and ask questions later" — but that one should not block when vandalism has not actually occurred, or there is no truly solid indication that it is intended.
Though I could understand and accept many of the suspicions related to some of my accounts and activity, at first I was irritated, and even at times somewhat angry at what seemed to me entirely absurd presumptions of an association of my accounts with those of a vandal. Then I realized that there could conceivably have been some logical reasons, if any of these names or similar ones had been used by vandals on some wiki in the past, which certainly was possible, or even likely.
I am confident that a thorough examination of any of these usernames will reveal no records of vandal edits from any of the accounts actually "attached" to my own. If there actually is any appearance of such a record I would definitely like to know of it, because I know that I CERTAINLY did not make any such edits EVER, and if there is such an appearance, there MUST be some other reason for it. There were several accounts with names which seemed to have been moved to "NAME(Usurped)" since in created the SUL for them, and being rather confused as to what went on with these, I am concerned that there may have been some accounts UNATTACHED to my SUL which were in some way mistaken as attached accounts.
I can understand that anyone rightfully prone to be suspicious of people using multiple accounts might easily believe that they had stumbled upon some vandal's "motherlode" of accounts until they actually LOOK at any of the edits I have actually made with ANY of these which I have actually yet used.
I eventually planned to make at least a few significant edits with all of them, very many with a few of them, and to have interesting images and quotations with links to Wikiquote, WIkipedia, and the Commons exhibited on almost of them.
I am NOT interested in sharing many personal details about myself on ANY of these accounts, and generally prefer any account I use to be entirely without any reference to my own gender, age, nationality or anything else. I would much rather have many good names be put to good use a few times a year, rather than build up an impressive edit count on any particular name. Though I am usually not much concerned about edit counts or comparing them, that I might give an indication of my long term presence on Wikimedia projects to those not clearly familiar with my activities with my primary accounts, I just tallied the edit count of a few of my most active ones and the total is well in excess of 40,000 edits. I have no clear idea, and not very much interest in how much above that my actually edit count would be if I tallied up all of my accounts on all the wikis, but I CAN STATE THAT ABSOLUTELY NONE OF THE EDITS I HAVE EVER MADE HAVE BEEN ACTS OF VANDALISM, TROLLING, OR DISHONEST VOTING.
- I view things as they are, without regard to place or person; my country is the world, and my religion is to do good. ~ Thomas Paine
Over the years I believe that I have at least twice been wrongly accused of being a sockpuppet of some particular editor at at Wikipedia, merely because I got involved in some petty disputes they were involved in as well, the most notable accusation being one many years ago that I was a sockpuppet of David Gerard, but I believe that this might be the first time in all these years that my most-used IPs were actually mis-identified as being those of a vandal, or any of my accounts was indefinitely blocked because of that. I am not absolutely certain that I have not had an account permanently blocked before, and believe that there might possibly have been some earlier incidents, years ago, where some account I created might have been blocked because of some false assumptions made because of the user name, but if there were any such incidents, I simply passed on without much concern about it, and do not actually know at this point what they might have been. This is DEFINITELY the first time I have encountered any major problems that greatly concerned me, where usernames I intended to make much use of were indefinitely blocked, my entirely innocent and useful edits with a few of them were rather rashly labeled the work of a vandal, or where the IPs I have used most were suspected of being the IPs of a known vandal, and any account I create with them blocked as if this absolute mis-identification were a certain and true thing, rather than an unconfirmed and absolutely false one.
Giordano Bruno, Thomas Paine, Ben Franklin, Søren Kierkegaard, and many other writers and artists have recognized the value, and sometimes the necessity of doing work under pseudonyms, to most effectively and fully address many of the issues with which they were most concerned.
- He that would live in peace and at ease, must not speak all he knows, nor judge all he sees. ~ Benjamin Franklin
On the Wikimedia projects and elsewhere I have usually chosen names with ironic, humorous, and romantic connotations and certain poetic symbolism. That the names of these accounts rarely have any resemblance at all to those which seem to be normally employed by a vandal I was associated with initially left me quite incredulous that anyone had assumed such a connection. I then found out how extensive and pernicious a vandal this was, and tempered my views.
I am a person who can agree with many different perspectives on things which will often seem opposed or even contradictory to casual or very biased observers with narrow views, but which to me seem quite complementary, compatible and consistent in many ways. Other views which they find perfectly reasonable and just I will find extremely flawed, unjust and hypocritical.
I recognize that I often have very odd and hard to explain perspectives on many things, and I usually simply prefer to not even try to explain them to others, but to act with what insight I can to do what good I can, in the best ways I can. This does not always involve attending to the most irritating or most extreme forms of foolishness I might perceive in others, but more often involves focussing on what might be ignorance or confusions in my own perspectives. I don't believe that anyone has to believe or know of things exactly as I do, nor fully agree with me or anyone else on the value of anything that we might try to indicate or express.
Reality is a complex enough affair without making false assumptions about it, or leading others to do so with lies and distortions of the truth.
Life is a complex enough affair with complex problems, without making complex rules to govern and constrain it in ways that are not clearly necessary, and give all too little regard to the truth of matters.
These two statements sum up my own attitude to two forms of error: having too little regard for others and for the truth, so as to have no regard at all for rules and agreements, and the often far more dangerous error of having too much regard for power and such rules as can be maintained by it, rather than for Truth, Justice and Liberty.
The most humble and wise know that there is ALWAYS far more going on within Reality than any mortal mind can ever be aware of, and the most courageous are not afraid of asserting this, even to those who are most often inclined to believe that they know all that needs to be known about some matter.
- Never, never rest contented with any circle of ideas, but always be certain that a wider one is still possible. ~ Richard Jefferies
I usually simply observe things far more than I actually participate in them. One means I have used to avoid attracting much notice or comment from casual observers is to simply use various identities to present various views which I consider valuable, or important to present, even when I do not entirely agree with them, and to be willing to address limited arguments in limited ways, rather than trying to elucidate to anyone the whole range of my reasons for doing the things which I do. I also can occasionally make minor changes or reversions to articles without there being even any intimation that the changes or reverts are in any way mandated by someone with greater status or standing on any project, and thus help make it more clear that they are always open to further debate.
To sum up my intentions in all things : I have long been intent on doing what I can to try to promote greater awareness of important truths and a kindlier disposition to each other among as many people as I can. I do not expect that this will always be an easy or safe thing to do, nor that all people ever will or ever should agree on all things. I do expect that most people can agree to disagree with others in civil and amicable manners, and not be presumptively insulting or suspicious against all those who disagree with them.
I have also often indicated a great aversion to the making of unnecessary or detrimental rules, even though I know that a few rules and agreements will always be necessary among most people. I have long thought some of the most important rules to value are those which indicate one should always strive to remain humble and make as few rules as necessary which constrain people's lives and capacities to communicate in respectful ways.
Not acting with too obviously strong a perspective nor too overwhelming a presence is one of the strategies I have long employed to most effectively help people find better ways to help themselves and become more willing to help each other to realize many vitally important truths and to manifest the most vitally crucial virtues.
I will close this message with a few quotes of the wise:
- Befriend whoever excels in virtue. Yield to kind words and helpful deeds, and do not hate your friend for a trifling fault as you are able. For ability is near to necessity. ~ Pythagoras
- Klaatu barada nikto! ... There must be security for all — or no one is secure... This does not mean giving up any freedom except the freedom to act irresponsibly. ~ Klaatu in The Day the Earth Stood Still
- Truth alone will endure; all the rest will be swept away before the tide of time. ~ Mahatma Gandhi
My hope and my trust is that Gandhi's words are true and applicable in this case, that the crucial truth of matters can be made clear to everyone concerned, some level of my ironic and non-malicious humor can be appreciated, and that at least some of the recent actions taken against some of my accounts reversed. ~ Rumour 23:29, 6 July 2008 (UTC)
Just a note to Heidi and Nathan, in case you check out this page, and are trying to look up a few other things: The poet I spoke of yesterday was Robinson Jeffers, and the first wiki creator was Ward Cunningham. I hope things go well with both of you and you find interesting material here. ~ Rumour 22:58, 11 June 2009 (UTC)