This proposal suggests that a committee be established to pare down the abundant rules to a reasonable size (1-2 pages)
- What sorts of rules is this going to cover? Just behavioral ones or also ones relating to articles, such as style guide? I don't think the latter can be summarized into so few pages. Angela. 23:44, Jan 30, 2005 (UTC)
This is primarily behavioral. A wiki style guide should be a separate project. Danny 23:47, 30 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I object to this proposal because I find the cause lacking and the implications troubling. First and perhaps foremost, I do not accept the premise that the "rules" have become over-complicated. Rules govern behavior, and enforce it, while guidelines suggest it. Insofar as I am aware, the only rule actually "enforced" on a regular basis is the Three-Revert Rule, and it has proved troublesome to do, because its very explicitness has encouraged evasion by dedicated revert warriors. It is true that there exist many guidelines, but they revolve around the same central concepts which were mentioned on the project page: common sense, trust, and wikilove. Most editors live by these principles and as a result never face the "judicial" side of Wikipedia: admin blocks, RfC, and the Arbitration Committee.
This brings me to my second point. Behavioral guidelines are often cited in Arbitration Committee cases, but such cases are rare, because bad-faith editors are rare. Truly bad faith users--vandals--are blocked by admins on sight, with no higher supervision required. Such actions represent the "magistrate" aspect of an admin's job, and are generally unchallenged. Admins are intelligent users, and know vandalism when they see it. The thornier problems are bad faith editing, revert-warring, and POV-pushing. Users who engage in such activities generally wind up before the Arbitration Committee, or are the subject of an RfC, or leave Wikipedia in frustration because the Nazi/Communist cabal (the very fact we get accused of both is a good sign) thwarted his or her efforts to propagate the "real" truth. Such instances are rare, and tend to stand out--because the vast majority of Wikipedians are good faith contributors.
I do not support this proposal because I do not understand the need for it. One doesn't need a set of rules to know how to interact socially, it's just common sense (and I think the authors of the proposal would agree with me on that point). I think that the terminology has been confused--we're talking about guidelines here, rules should be those things which have direct power of enforcement behind them. Finally, I object to the manner in which this reorganization would take place:"trusted users and admins, as well as former and current members of the Arbitration and Mediation committees." It's all well and good that such a group would draft the proposal--who would understand the current body of guidelines and rules better--but such a sweeping change, to have legitimacy, would have to be confirmed by the community, not just handpicked subset of it. Mackensen (talk) 00:55, 31 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Rules vs. guidelines
I agree with dannyisme, in general, that rules have become counterproductive on Wikipedia. There is a specific difference between rules and guidelines: Rules are enforced upon a group, guidelines suggest behaviour.
Abolish all rules
Rules are not an answer; they only describe precisely how inappropriate a person may behave. (and Polls are divisive)
Develop community censure process
Primarily, this means education. Unfortunately, most methods of self-governance will be immediately used to create a tyranny of the majority. This should be considered.
- Amgine 01:10, 31 Jan 2005 (UTC)