Wikiwatch: How Did That Picture Get There?

WikiWatch... image courtesy of Brad GuigarThe promised Wikinews article is right here. Oddly, the accompanying picture appears to be advertising my merchandise, which either undermines or strengthens certain arguments, depending on who is arguing what. I would much rather they used Brad's eyeball over on the left.

You can find several conflicting opinions in the record-settingly-long list of comments to my last post on the subject, should you choose to peruse them. I shall not attempt to sum these up, but shall instead offer some final thoughts on the matter.

1) Wikipedia appears on my referrer list as having provided 401 out of 293,781 referrals for the month of September. In October (the month during which I stirred the pot again) it provided 395 referrals (as of this writing). Webalizer rounds this down to "0.00%" of my monthly traffic. Obviously my Wikipedia article is a HUGE part of my advertising campaign. (Where's the sarcasm tag, now?)

2) This Wikinews article is well-written, and comprehensive within the limits of concision. Unfortunately it falls short in one key area -- it treats webcomics as an isolated example. The excesses of elitist, deletionist editors and admins span far more topics than just webcomics. If you've got examples of other kinds of articles being treated in this way, you need to let the Wikinews reporters know about it, so everybody can see the big picture.

3) I've heard horror stories from enough bright, articulate people that I will probably never bother to contribute to Wikipedia. Jay Maynard is a lot smarter than I am. If Wikipedia doesn't want his contributions, they sure as shootin' can't have mine.

4) Several people have suggested that those of us with complaints should offer solutions, rather than just whining. I AM offering a solution. It goes like this: Don't send Wikimedia Foundation your money until they change the system. Wikipedia should be writer-friendly, encouraging improvement to articles, constructively criticizing them where appropriate, and erring on the side of inclusion. "Speedy Delete" is none of these things, and cannot be allowed as a tool to fix weak articles.

I can't make those system changes myself, nor can I suggest them within the system because the system as it stands will delete my suggestions.

Wikipedia has developed an immunological disease. It attacks the changes required to help it grow and thrive using the same methods by which it attacks the spam that might bury it in irrelevance. The end result is that it will wither unless surgically altered from the OUTSIDE.

The Wikimedia Foundation has that ability, but none of the rest of us do.

If you want to make comments, make them over at Wikinews. It's not that I don't want to have the last word here (oops... I just had the last word, and it feels GREAT), it's that I think your comments will be more effective closer to the broken systems. Also, I'm tired of fishing your colorful metaphors out of my spam trap. I just chlorinated this thing.

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