Wikivoyage talk:User ban nominations/Archive 2018-2020

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User:FUERDAl on Ferris Wheels

Looks like we may have another F-u-e-r-d-a-i or Telstra sockpuppet on our hands. Libertarianmoderate (talk) 19:41, 2 August 2018 (UTC)Reply

Thanks for the heads-up, Libertarianmoderate. In cases like this where a user’s vandalistic intentions are obvious, there’s no need for a formal vote on whether the user should be banned. Just take it to Wikivoyage:Vandalism in progress (which I see you already have) and an admin will take care of it. — AndreCarrotflower (talk) 20:53, 2 August 2018 (UTC)Reply

Block for repeated bigoted content in article space?

Moved to the main project page

Telstra trying to avoid detection?

Look at the recent edit history of the Szczytno article. Three small edits over the last day, each by a different "number" account, each of which has made exactly one edit (to that very article).

I've seen Telstra behaving like this many times before, and wondered why the heck they're doing it. Does Telstra perhaps think that admins won't notice they're using several accounts, block only the last of them and leave the rest of them usable? ϒpsilon (talk) 09:30, 12 September 2018 (UTC)Reply

He has been doing many edits under many names recently, only some are being blocked. I really think people should just forget about this users methods, accept the edits if they are OK, undo if they are not. Blocking the account is the opposite of what is wanted, which is to keep using the same account. I think we just need to tolerate this contributor that has intellectual impairments, only if a bad edit should it be deleted. People are using too much time and effort on this and still only catching about 50% of his edits. --Traveler100 (talk) 17:36, 12 September 2018 (UTC)Reply
In Telstra's communications with us, the user seems to struggle with English, and I'm not sure that they are trying to harm the site; I think they want to improve it. At the same time I think blocking Telstra and reverting his/her edits should be our procedure; if we let them edit, they would be even harder to control. If we keep doing what we're trying to do, it should work IMO. --Comment by Selfie City (talk about my contributions) 18:09, 12 September 2018 (UTC)Reply

Why are we playing Whack-a-Mole?

Swept in from the pub

At long last, can someone please adjust Special:AbuseFilter/25? There's absolutely no reason we need to keep tearing our hair out trying to deal with BTCentralPlus manually. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 18:02, 25 August 2018 (UTC)Reply

Seconded. We're not the nightly entertainment for some loser in Chorley with nothing better to do. --ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 18:42, 25 August 2018 (UTC)Reply
As if we needed any more reasons to adjust our BTCentralPlus abuse filter, here is another one. I'd do it myself if I knew how. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 18:46, 25 August 2018 (UTC)Reply
Maybe someone over at Wikimedia Meta's Small Wiki Monitoring Team know how to adjust filters? --ϒpsilon (talk) 19:23, 25 August 2018 (UTC)Reply
surely some admins here know the format of the filter? :-o (talk) 05:47, 26 August 2018 (UTC)Reply
What do we want the filter to do? Do we want it to disallow edits, instead of merely tagging them? Nurg (talk) 06:19, 26 August 2018 (UTC)Reply
Or is it to add additional IPs to the filter? Nurg (talk) 06:41, 26 August 2018 (UTC)Reply


Swept in from the pub

I had a look at some of his editing history, and unfortunately, he does appear to have have some jingoistic tendencies when it comes to articles regarding Malaysia. To his credit, he did stop his obsession with removing all mentions of Singapore when I brought it up on his talk page and AndreCarrotflower warned him about it. However, he recently made this edit, and this edit where the edit summary suggests that he really doesn't get the point that we are not a tourism promotion agency for either Singapore or Malaysia, and that our purpose is to be a guide that provides information that serves travellers best. I am really reluctant to propose a ban because he is a valuable contributor and has indeed done a lot of good work in our articles regarding Malaysia, but that said, we also can't allow our articles to be unduly influenced by any particular user's nationalistic, let alone jingoistic views. What does everyone suggest we do? The dog2 (talk) 18:40, 31 August 2018 (UTC)Reply

@Ikan Kekek:I was wondering if you could reach out to him. He seems to be ignoring me, and I suspect it is because I am a Singaporean, and he thinks I'm trying to make Malaysia look bad. The dog2 (talk) 23:16, 31 August 2018 (UTC)Reply
We've been down this road with Chongkian umpteen times before. When The dog2 mentions that I "warned him about it", he's referring to the most recent message on Chongkian's talk page which specifically mentioned that "this behavior is rapidly leading [him] towards user ban territory". I don't know how much clearer of a message we can send without actually blocking him, so I took the liberty of instituting a three-day one per Wikivoyage:How to handle unwanted edits#Escalating user blocks. Hopefully, he will at long last understand that we're not playing around about this. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 23:27, 31 August 2018 (UTC)Reply


I don't know of a circumstance where someone is not an auto confirmed user would use this page. Because of repeated problems, I've protected this for six months. Feel free to undo this and start a discussion if you object. Ground Zero (talk) 19:56, 10 October 2018 (UTC)Reply

Good call. No arguments here. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 20:59, 10 October 2018 (UTC)Reply

Competence is required

Swept in from the pub

Given the recent cases by User:Cactusflies22 and User:Gzaqp, I was wondering if we should import the Wikipedia policy w:Wikipedia:Competence is required. I understand that this should be obvious, but perhaps it will be better to have it spelt out clearly as a formal policy. The dog2 (talk) 22:06, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply

I believe I made the same suggestion a while back, though I can't remember where. At any rate, I fully support this initiative. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 22:14, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
How would we enforce this? --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 22:41, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
I would agree with a much more narrowly defined policy that focuses only on the ability to understand and write in English sufficiently well to be able to grasp Wikivoyage guidelines and talk page messages. But competence was not the issue in the case we're discussing. Instead, that individual is simply a troll that acts in bad faith to try to waste our time utterly pointlessly. I can think of only one Wikivoyage user who skirts close to the line of incompetence in English while operating in good faith, and this one isn't it. Ikan Kekek (talk) 22:46, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
@AndreCarrotflower: You mentioned competence at Wikivoyage:User_ban_nominations when speaking of User:Cactusflies22. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 22:52, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
I don't like the idea of banning people because their English isn't perfect except in the most extreme of circumstances though. Local knowledge is welcome here at WV, and we want to encourage locals from around the world to share things about their hometowns with us, and many of these people are not native English speakers. Unless the English is so bad that it cannot be understood, hopefully the native speakers here can be understanding and just help to correct spelling or grammatical errors. The dog2 (talk) 23:14, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
@The dog2: could we please stick to the proposal bring made instead of introducing straw man arguments? No-one has suggested banning users "because their English isn't perfect". That is a red herring that just derails the discussion. It isn't helpful to do that. I realise that it sounds like I'm being harsh, but please look at the Wikipedia policy that is being discussed. It describes competence as:
"the ability to read and write English well enough to avoid introducing incomprehensible text into articles and to communicate effectively."
not as having "perfect English". Please stick to the discussion at hand. Thank you. Ground Zero (talk) 23:24, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
I was the only who brought this up, so I know about it. I think we can be a bit more lenient for a travel guide than an encyclopaedia language-wise as we would like to encourage non-native English speakers to contribute information about their respective hometowns that would be useful for potential visitors. But yes, there should be a mechanism to deal with people acting in good faith but unable to make constructive edits. Sure, that guy was just a troll, but I think having such policies spelt out may discourage such trolling. We can guide new users, but we can't be babysitting them on what edits they make. Perhaps by spelling out such a policy, we can make that clear. The dog2 (talk) 23:52, 16 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
I think what you've said makes sense, even though I have not yet decided that I support this policy. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 00:25, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
I don't see the need for this policy. The example user given is a vandal that we deal with under existing policy, and the other good-faith user Ikan is referring to shouldn't be penalised in any way when it is easy enough to correct or undo some of his English clangers. When else has an otherwise good-faith user's lack of English ability had a negative effect on Wikivoyage? Or when has such a person, being unable to understand policy, become a problem for this community? --ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 00:33, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Answer: In some articles about Indonesia. But we've never felt the need to ban him, and I kind of agree that this is a policy in search of a reason for it. Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:32, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────@Ikan Kekek: For the record, I do not support banning the guy you mentioned. That's why I called for leniency with regard to bad English. I was just concerned about whether or not the troll is exploiting loopholes in our policies. The dog2 (talk) 01:50, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply

No, he isn't. Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:07, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
The page in question is not a policy at the English Wikipedia. It is a "supplement", which is basically an essay that explains something (in this case, that explains a guideline, which in turn explains part of an actual policy). IMO it is not a good policy for any place. It's an idea, not a set of enforceable points.
I have never seen any evidence, either in my own experience or in research, that online trolls are discouraged by the existence of policies. Trolls simply don't say, "Oh, I was going to make a pest of myself, but since I see that would be 'against policy', I guess I won't do that!" Instead, they say, "Ooooh, lookit this long list of things that annoy these folks! I wonder which of these banned behaviors would be most fun to try!" WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:49, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Good post. Shall we put this proposal to bed? All we need to do is ban the next sock of this troll more quickly. Nothing to do with the troll's competence. Ikan Kekek (talk) 06:36, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
That's fine with me. The dog2 (talk) 08:26, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────It's interesting to read everyone else's take on the pcv vandal (User:Cactusflies22 et al.) I actually don't think he's a vandal in the strict sense of the term, implying bad faith and an intention to disrupt the site. I think he's describable as a "vandal" only because that's the closest category of user that policy allows us to ban. My own intuition, and the little social media investigation I did one day when I was bored (maybe that's an underhanded tactic, but when a person plasters their real name and city of residence all over their userspace while failing to lock down their privacy settings on Facebook, I see that as practically an invitation to snoop), lead me to believe that his professions of good faith hampered by mental illness are genuine, and that this is indeed a case of massive incompetence. And given that all of the foregoing shouldn't mean that we have to continue wasting our time on a user who is evidently impervious to our efforts to reform him into a valuable contributor, a hole in our policy is exposed. I think a "competence is required" policy is the perfect thing with which to fill that hole. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 15:22, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply

Also, WhatamIdoing: the same as with Wikivoyage:Deny recognition, I wish you would stop inferring that just because a Wikipedia page is a "supplement" or "essay" or something short of binding policy, that necessarily means its Wikivoyage analogue can't indeed be full-fledged binding policy. We are a different site from Wikipedia and are not obliged to follow their lead on everything. As I see it, the goal of a "competence is required" policy would not be to dissuade incompetent users (who, almost by definition, are oblivious to policy anyway) so much as to make it crystal-clear to site administrators that a userban is an appropriate remedy even in cases like Cactusflies22 that aren't exactly vandalism. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 15:22, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
But in the case of Cactus flies, the poor English wasn't the problem that got him banned. The justification you gave was that he was another iteration of a block-evading long-term vandal, who had previously made threats of self-harm if the community didn't do what he wanted. Further blocks will use the same justification, and rightly so. The other issue which he or a copycat have continued to exhibit is posting the same vague requests for help all over the place. That again is disruptive buzz-killing behaviour, which we can already control using existing policy.
I just don't see that poor English or general incompetence is that big of a problem that we need to legislate against it. The only other example user I can think of, the one who edits Indonesian articles from time to time, doesn't edit war, and does engage in discussion when needed. His occasional garbled edits are an easily-fixed inconvenience, not a terrible problem that we need to invent a new policy for.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 16:34, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Right. No new policy or guidelines are needed to deal with this situation. Ikan Kekek (talk) 16:50, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Agreed. Consensus? --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 18:02, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Please forgive what might seem like obstructionism on my part; I came late to this discussion and want to make my feelings known before we come to a decision.
I think we're barking up the wrong tree by focusing on English proficiency. We actually have quite a few contributors - for example Yuriy Kosygin, Saqib, Lkcl it, and AFlorence (and if any of these users read this, I hope they understand my intent is not to insult their language skills, but to compliment their dedication and to be clear as possible regarding the argument I'm making) - whose English proficiency is deficient enough to require vigilance by copyeditors, yet who are or were invaluable members of our community and in some cases have even been named administrators. On the other hand, we have a user like Cactusflies, who is a native English speaker yet is incompetent nonetheless. I think the benchmark for a "competence is required" policy should be the question of whether a reasonable person would conclude it to be possible to reform a particular problem user into a productive one, irrespective of level of English proficiency and irrespective of whether the user is acting in good faith or bad faith. That leads into my response to ‎ThunderingTyphoons' remarks about "another iteration of a block-evading long-term vandal". It's true that Cactusflies was a block evader, but honestly the feeling I got about him was that he was simply mentally incapable of comprehending our policy, or us when we tried to explain to him why he was being repeatedly userbanned. One has to feel a certain amount of pity for a person like that, and viewed in that light, I don't think his behavior is classifiable in good conscience as "bad faith". It is, however, classifiable as "incompetence" and "not our problem". And that's the central question that IMO a "competence is required" policy is the perfect answer for: what do you do with a user who is not acting in bad faith and is thus not really a vandal, but whose actions are deleterious to the site nonetheless?
-- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 18:56, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Why do we need a new policy for one individual who can be dealt with under existing policies? Ikan Kekek (talk) 23:53, 17 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
We don't. Andre, it sounds like you are worried that someone might think that admins aren't allowed to do what's right for this site and this community, unless there's a "crystal-clear" statement somewhere that provides explicit authorization for each and every situation. It doesn't sound like anyone else shares that view.
With respect to your earlier comments on enwiki's pages, I was making two completely unrelated points:
  • There was a factual error in the description of the page. If anyone was relying on that erroneous description (e.g., if they planned to repeat the erroneous claim, if that claimed status made the proposal seem stronger because it seemed to be tested and working for another community), then they might want to know that.
  • I personally do not think that page (i.e., the whole page, not just the title or the concept) should be adopted as a policy by any community anywhere. I've no objection to trying to write a different page on that concept, but I wouldn't use that page. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:56, 18 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
I don't see any real need for such a policy. However if we do introduce one, then it need to be written from scratch. It should focus on how to help editors to learn, and directing them to areas that thay are more competent at. For example you don't need to be able to write English to add lat/longs to listings. There may be editors who would benefit from attending an editathon and getting classroom tution, although this would be directed to WP editing (unless there is ever a WV event). AlasdairW (talk) 22:30, 18 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Hmmm... Wow! What next? Requiring high school, college or university transcripts to verify language proficiency or perhaps results from some ILR based test or a letter from your home room teacher or your mom if home schooled and most of all, results from some psychological exam. I don't believe in a new policy being added is in order. (The devil is in the detail(s)). I remember a Slavic phrase translated as "Throw momma from the train a kiss" that makes perfect sense in that particular language because of syntax and word endings or a Ukranian headline years ago about the building of a large derrick translated as a "Giant Ukranian Erection". Attract contributors and assist myself (yes I too make errors of course and am unfortunately not perfect) and others in a friendly manner in order to learn, develope (whoops I added an 'e') content etc. without condemnation and lengthy diatribes as to the use of a word, a comma or even policy. There are plenty of policies and tools if need be to address this issue. Be kind as we all are playing in the same sandbox. - Matroc (talk) 02:35, 19 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
While I oppose making any policy on this matter, I don't think anyone is saying that all contributors to WV must have Noah Webster's command of the English language. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 02:53, 19 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Right. Nobody here is in favour of going after editors over their English proficiency. We are only interested in going after the trolls, and the disagreement is on whether or not we need additional tools at our disposal for that. The dog2 (talk) 05:24, 19 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
I agree, it's unhelpful to mischaracterize the arguments being made so wildly. Going back to WhatamIdoing's comment above, I don't necessarily think we need "a 'crystal-clear' statement somewhere that provides explicit authorization for each and every situation" (emphasis mine), but I do think we should err on the side of caution in the case of userbans, which are one of the more extreme measures admins have at their disposal "to do what's right for this site and this community", and which historically we've always avoided doling out absent a truly compelling reason and several extra layers of scrutiny. Let me reframe the issue: regardless of whether we've only yet seen one non-hypothetical user who this policy would be applicable to, what harm is there in clarifying policy? Why intentionally leave any degree of ambiguity unresolved? -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 16:29, 19 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
Because there has yet to be one single case where this supposed ambiguity has been an issue. This policy is not needed in the real world (of Wikivoyage, as opposed to in theoretical situations that haven't happened) I will be happy to revise my position if and when that ever changes. But with respect to you, and you do have my utmost respect as a Wikivoyager (so much so my phone sometimes autocorrects "and" to "André"), there's no appetite for this proposal - it's time to let it go and move onto other things.--ThunderingTyphoons! (talk) 18:25, 19 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
If that's the case, then I'll drop the issue for now. But I'm pretty sure I remember some past occasions unrelated to Cactusflies where I've wished CIR was a Wikivoyage policy, so I'll be keeping my eye out for future cases to bolster the argument in favor of this policy. -- AndreCarrotflower (talk) 21:15, 19 November 2019 (UTC)Reply
@AndreCarrotflower: Wikivoyage:User ban nominations archive. --Comment by Selfie City (talk | contributions) 21:27, 19 November 2019 (UTC)Reply