Donald Trump and handshakes

In-depth evaluation of specific Wikipedia articles.
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Flip Flopped
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Re: Donald Trump and handshakes

Post by Flip Flopped » Tue Sep 26, 2017 12:02 am

Isn't the basic argument over whether compassion and good sense should trump (haha) Wikipedia policy in cases such as the homeless man with an incredible number of arrests?

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The Devil's Advocate
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Re: Donald Trump and handshakes

Post by The Devil's Advocate » Tue Sep 26, 2017 2:48 am

Flip Flopped wrote:
Tue Sep 26, 2017 12:02 am
Isn't the basic argument over whether compassion and good sense should trump (haha) Wikipedia policy in cases such as the homeless man with an incredible number of arrests?
Part of the problem is that what qualifies as "compassion and good sense" is not universal. I am not lacking in compassion by any stretch, despite the things said about me over the article. Both Wikipedians and critics need to recognize that Wikipedia by its very nature has power and influence far greater than any individual news outlet. That means it can be used to harm, but it can also be used to help. Adhering to best practice on Wikipedia in cases such as Henry Earl means an article that will portray a far more nuanced and sympathetic image of the man than any news article. When I pointed out that the news media already talks about Earl and the top results about him are generally more unflattering than the Wikipedia article could be if edited properly, someone suggested that maybe some day off in the future those sources somehow won't come up. The critics involved showed no logic in their actions. Should anyone honestly be hedging on the idea that some day in the far-off future, the major news stories about Earl will vanish or won't be in the top search results about him then they are being naive fools. Given that, a page that can be legitimately made more favorable towards him is preferable to any of the various news pieces about him.

Trump has no similar problem as despite the amount of negative coverage he receives, he is far too established and prominent a figure to be primarily associated with negative aspects of his life by the media with only obscure, albeit high-quality, pieces going into the more humanizing aspects of the man. His article on Wikipedia is naturally a highly-trafficked and closely-scrutinized page and so it can't be too biased against him without it arousing plenty of conflict. As such the real battle over Trump's reputation is waged in these ancillary articles popping up in random news bursts where editors can get away with more by narrowing their focus to things that are primarily going to be unflattering towards him. Can't recall any time someone created and was able to successfully keep such an article that favored Trump since the election. Generally, the purpose of articles that are made and kept has been to mock or denigrate him with no other discernible way to write the article. When there is a discernible way it usually doesn't materialize because the article doesn't get enough traffic to draw the attention of users more interested in protecting his reputation than hurting it. Pretty much every case fails a merger examination.

Every aspect of the comparison is bogus and seems more about scoring points for a side that doesn't like criticism focused on the political bias of Wikipedia. There is no hypocrisy or double standard involved at all. My position has always been that there are cases where Wikipedia can be used for good and cases where it can be used for ill. I have yet to see a case where the latter would be favored over the former when adhering to best practice.

Kingsindian
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Re: Donald Trump and handshakes

Post by Kingsindian » Mon Oct 02, 2017 8:37 am

The Devil's Advocate wrote:
Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:46 pm
As a liberal, you like to believe the problems on Wikipedia are entirely explained by policy wonkery rather than systemic bias, especially since you would be a part of the systemic bias with that being the case.
My first post in the thread:
Kingsindian wrote: To my mind, the story is mostly inclusionists vs deletionists, mixed with a fair amount of politics.
I don't know: perhaps when your interlocutor is unwilling or unable to read the plain words in front of their face, and is intent on attributing motives to you, it's hard to fruitfully argue.

Let me try to summarize your position, as I understand it, and give my position. Of course, this is my characterization, and others can judge whether it's fair or not.

In your Breitbart piece, you say that the article is basically created to criticize Trump by agenda-driven editors. The topic is too ridiculous to merit a stand-alone article. You stated that the creator (Onceinawhile) is "pro-Arab" and that the article was expanded by Sagecandor who has a demonstrably anti-Trump agenda. Then you say that the article was only !voted "keep" by a minority of editors, but was closed as no consensus. The article was nominated at DYK and was accepted, so it landed on the front page. Thus, a piece of anti-Trump propaganda was viewed by a lot of people.

Where do I agree with the story, and where do I disagree?

I largely agree is that DYK is rather variable and many kinds of low-quality articles get promoted there. For instance, I mentioned some of the problems in DYK in part 1 of my blog post. And it is undeniably true that DYK can be, and has been, used in the past as a vehicle for promotion (see Gibraltarpedia (http://wikipediocracy.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=914)).

About the AfD, I think the story is partly inclusionism vs deletionism, and partly politics. Obviously anything to do with Trump cannot be free of politics. This is why I asked you for your reasons as to why this article should have been deleted, according to Wikipedia policy. You chose to not do it, and at this point, I am going to assume that you don't want to give your reasons. That is fine, but you could have just said so directly.

In your Breitbart piece, you did not even mention the inclusionism/deletionist aspect of the discussion. You knew NorthAmerica1000 and their history, but chose not to mention it. Why? I note that both of the AfDs (this one, and the "Trump orb" one) which NA1000 closed as "no consensus", were AfD'ed once again, and have been now closed as "delete". Recall that I anticipated both of these things.

There are several other curious facts and questions. The (in)famous editor Andrew Davidson !voted "keep" on both. (He had also !voted keep on the Henry Earl article). Why did Volunteer Marek and NorthbySouthBaranof !vote delete on "Trump Orb"? Why did Neutrality !vote delete on "Trump Orb" but keep on the handshake article?

All of this has nothing to do with "inclusionism vs deletionism" and must be politics? I don't find the story plausible. You are free to dismiss it as "wonkery", but that charge is, in my opinion, hollow coming from someone who spent a lot of time arguing about whether "BLP1E" applied to the Henry Earl story.

In my opinion, there are two consistent ways to criticize the AfDs. The first way is to argue that the procedure was internally inconsistent, that is, it violated Wikipedia policy. The second way is to argue that while the policy was followed, but for moral, political or other reasons, policy should be trumped by other considerations (Flip Flopped's point).

For the first point, was Wikipedia policy violated? TDA didn't give an argument on this point at all, even after repeated prodding. In my opinion, Wikipedia policy was not violated.

For the second point, what are the outside considerations for which the Trump article should have been deleted? On this point, people can disagree, just as people disagreed with the deletion of the Henry Earl article. This is why, I repeatedly asked TDA: what is the difference in the two cases? But they didn't reply.

In my view, the reason for the existence of both the Henry Earl article and the Trump handshakes article, is basically the demise of WP:NOTNEWS. News sources are considered "reliable" on Wikipedia and thus we get these kinds of articles. Many people found the very idea of an article created on a black homeless man who is famous for his 1000+ arrests, to be disgusting and !voted delete. Similarly, many people considered that the article on Trump handshakes was simply a thinly veiled attack on Trump, and so !voted delete. Read the reasons in both AfDs; many people directly argued in these terms.

My story has the advantage that it explains the facts, and it also contains TDA's story as a sub-case. If, as many people (including TDA) believe, the media has a "liberal bias", even a completely undistorted reflection of the media would have a liberal bias. Wikipedia may add its own distortions, but the latter mechanism is neither necessary nor sufficient for explaining the facts. I don't believe Wikipedia's internal distortions are a big part of the story here.

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The Devil's Advocate
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Re: Donald Trump and handshakes

Post by The Devil's Advocate » Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:06 am

I have read your words Kingsindian, and the one constant in all of your criticism of my articles is a desire to write off any talk of political bias. Sometimes you really can't deny it, as in this case, so you just argue very strongly for the primacy of policy wonkery over bias. As I see it, this article would not have been created but for politics and it wouldn't have been kept but for politics. Can you say otherwise? That there is some policy wonkery involved is not critical to the story nor is it of any relevance to a wider audience. You come here after a while and decide to lie about things that have been said, claiming I didn't offer responses when I did just because you didn't like or understand the responses you got. Running with some other person's smear attack on me based off a completely absurd comparison of situations doesn't help matters. My positions here are quite consistent if you paid much attention to the positions I have taken.

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Flip Flopped
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Re: Donald Trump and handshakes

Post by Flip Flopped » Mon Oct 02, 2017 11:29 pm

This is a very interesting dialogue. It would be even more interesting if you guys could put aside any lingering animosity and try even harder to communicate. It's apparent you're both really trying to be clear with each other. :)

sashi
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Re: Donald Trump and handshakes

Post by sashi » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:50 pm

I would only add that as far as I can tell the article on Henry Earl was not promoted to DYK by a defrocked admin socking... if KI wants to go into policy wonkery (as TDA rightly puts it), these two elements would need to be explained carefully to those who aren't versed in wiki-processes. (How do you get a commissioned / POV article onto the front page? How do you get around a topic ban from US politicians to write an article making fun of a US politician AND get it promoted to front page NOTNEWS? ^^

KI: you asked: "was Wikipedia policy violated? "

The answer is very clear: "Yes, it was."

sashi
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Re: Donald Trump and handshakes

Post by sashi » Thu Oct 05, 2017 4:25 pm

Donald Fagen joins the gang. (sigh).

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