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Note:
These were fictional, but realistic discussions between myself and my conscience which took the role of an "interviewer". Please note that this page does deal with sensitive issues which may cause readers to not fully understand "why" these issues were discussed in the first place.

Your ESB RfA nomination in July

(Discussed as of 1st September 2015)

  • Interviewer: I just wanted to ask if you could share with me your thoughts on your failed RfA in July 2015 on the Encyclopedia SpongeBobia?
  • C.Syde: I was participating in current RfA discussions for current applicants. And then I was just browsing a list of archived RfAs, when I discovered that an RfA bearing my name had already been nominated as of the 8th July 2015, and closed and archived the following day. It was currently the 18th August 2015, and it was the very first time I'd ever seen this RfA nomination. I was very surprised when I discovered this nomination. I was rather irritated at not being informed of the nomination in advance so that I could accept or decline the request. I was also shocked upon discovering the user that had nominated me.
  • Interviewer: Were you surprised that your RfA on the Encyclopedia SpongeBobia was unsuccessful?
  • C.Syde: Of course I wasn't surprised. I wasn't active enough on that wiki for one thing, as the users that opposed my RfA pointed out. Given the option, I would not have accepted the nomination for another, as I had no desire to become an administrator there. I may have smirked at the stupidity of the user that nominated me, but it also irritates me how they randomly go round requesting policy changes on wikis that they've only recently joined. And approaching other users and suggesting that they apply for certain user rights. And on those occasions I was thinking "I think it's best that you don't go round asking users to nominate themselves. Someone else can nominate them, or if they want they can nominate themselves". It just doesn't seem right for a newcomer to go round asking users to nominate themselves like that. That sort of behaviour just isn't considered practical for a newbie editor.
  • Interviewer: While no two people on this planet are quite the same, just as no two people's minds and opinions are quite the same, I'd have to agree with you on what you've said here. You do seem to raise valid points.
  • C.Syde: Oh yes, I'll also add something that just came into mind. It's also impractical to go round welcoming new users, when you're a newbie yourself, like this user did here.
  • Interviewer: True. I wouldn't have been surprised to have seen this, had you not presented to me the first revision of the page, either. But they were a troll.
  • C.Syde: Of course they were a troll, but they were still supposed to be a newbie, and troll or not, that sort of behaviour completely violates the expectations of a practical newbie editor. What do you see in this?
  • Interviewer: I see a newbie editor who's not very experienced, jumping ahead of themselves, and who's in over their head.
  • C.Syde: Exactly. It's the sort of behaviour that completely undermines the idea of maturity, and it can leave a bad impression on the community, which was probably the user's intention in the first place.
  • Interviewer: Indeed. That's very true.
  • C.Syde: It shows that they're trying to make out that they're this really helpful person who wants to be big. But what other users see instead is this guy who's just, for lack of a better term, uneasy.

A then unknown sock-puppeteer

(Discussed as of 5th September 2015)

  • Interviewer: Have you jumped to any further erroneous conclusions about potential sock-puppets since June 2014?
  • C.Syde: I can't really say. It depends on your perspective really. I sort of did jump to a conclusion that this edit was done by that user under a sock-puppet account. At the time I was assuming good faith and trusting that this user was not a sock-puppet account of that user. Better be safe than sorry.
  • Interviewer: So what made you think that this user could have been that user?
  • C.Syde: There was no evidence that they were a different user yet, and I knew that that user desperately wanted to return to the Sims wiki, and when I saw this and this, I thought they'd finally thrown in the towel and had begun trying to ask experienced users on the Sims wiki to help them on their wiki, so they wouldn't be so tempted to return to the Sims wiki.
  • Interviewer: But were those two users the same one?
  • C.Syde: No. For assurances sake, I asked another user who they believed the sock-puppet account to belong to. As it turns out, this account, was a sock-puppet account, of the same user that owned this account. It was obvious that they were a sock-puppet, but it wasn't obvious who they were a sock-puppet of. The user in question was still largely unknown back then.

Erroneous conclusions about potential sock-puppets

(Discussed as of 5th September 2015)

  • Interviewer: So you said you were unsure whether the subject of our previous discussion would have had any negative effects on your reputation as an editor?
  • C.Syde: Yes, I'm not sure. But I have noticed some erroneous conclusions made by others about potential sock-puppets, or the wrong sock-puppet user. This user confessed that they weren't the one who created this account. The real owner of that account was most likely a newbie, and had no idea that they would be accused of sock-puppetry. Come to think of it, they probably didn't know how to request an unblock, and were probably too intimidated to stand up for themselves.
  • Interviewer: Why exactly do you believe that this user really isn't a sock-puppet?
  • C.Syde: Because for one thing, I've seen evidence that counted against the possibility of them being a sock-puppet, although people who haven't seen the evidence that I found nearly a month ago, may not be convinced that the user was innocent all along. The user was probably accused of being a sock-puppet for adding nothing but user-boxes to their user page. Which several users have perceived as being one of this user's signature behaviours. But looking at this user's contributions, not all the user-boxes they added to their user page matched the ones this user typically added. The user probably did this because they didn't understand why they were being accused, and they didn't know how to convince the blocking administrators that they weren't the user they were accused of being.[1]
  • Interviewer: So that's one erroneous conclusion, are there any more that you would like to present to me?
  • C.Syde: Yes. these three accounts were all labelled as sock-puppets of this user, when in-fact they were sock-puppets of that user. The suspected user has told me that they were not in the least bit impressed that they were suspected for owning those sock-puppet accounts. As a matter of fact, that user hasn't created any more sock-puppets after creating this one. They have not created any sock-puppets since, and they've confessed that they have no desire to continue creating sock-puppets, not after all the trouble that they've faced.
  • Interviewer: But do you actually feel sympathetic towards this user?
  • C.Syde: Well? That's actually a good question. Not at first. But ever since this incident, I came to realise that they never intentionally acted in bad faith. They were just inexperienced, and apparently misguided. However it wasn't until this user started making accusations that I was harassing them as an IP, and Wikia Staff's advice to me to not publicly oppose any users and their sock-puppet accounts, unless it was clear that they were / are acting in bad faith, that I abandoned the dislike that I had expressed towards them for creating all those socks. One of the reasons I agreed to turn over a new page was to confirm that it wasn't me, but a local IP user, who'd harassed them. Although it might be possible that the said IP user knew that I was a local wikia editor. So to answer your question, not at first, but these days, yes. I'm still opposed to the idea of sock-puppetry, but now that they've stopped making sock-puppets, it's easier to not hold my dislike for sock-puppeteers against them.

Account Hijack in July: Discussion - Part One

(Discussed as of 17th September 2015)

  • Interviewer: So on the 11th July 2015, this user talked this user into giving them their password, which allowed them to hijack their account, and troll with it on The Sims Wiki, and on your wiki, which costed them their ability to use those sites to edit?
  • C.Syde: Yes. When I saw these blatant bad faith edits made by this account, I assumed that it wasn't them that was making those bad edits, but I left a formal warning on their talk page to improve their behaviour if they wanted to continue editing on my wiki, in-case it really was them making those negative edits. But yes, it just didn't seem in character for a user who wanted to start a new leaf and be respected as a good faith user, to suddenly turn into an ill-mannered troll like that.
  • Interviewer: So did it change the behaviour of the user that was using the account at the time?
  • C.Syde: No. If anything, it made their behaviour just as bad, if not worse. But I knew it would, given their current behaviour. It was clear that they had no intention of being constructive. And I was like "You've had your warning, so it's time to give you what you've paid for". So I blocked them, but allowed them to edit their own talk page. They replied with "Unblock me or I will kill you. I know where you live. I can be much worse than this user and this user. I can be the worst user that wikia has ever seen".
  • Interviewer: And then.
  • C.Syde: A little while later I received a message from the owner of the account, claiming that it wasn't her intention, since the disruptive user in question found out her password and trolled with it. But I think we'll wrap this discussion for now and start a new one because it's quite a long story.
  • Interviewer: Okay.

Account Hijack in July: Discussion - Part Two

(Discussed as of 18th September 2015)

  • Interviewer: You now have some more energy to resume our discussion, right?
  • C.Syde: Indeed. Well I'd blocked their account for three days, and the real owner of the account said that they would change their password to prevent the disruptive user from using their account. It seemed that they had requested an unblock, and I shortened the block to one day. A little while later it seemed that they had requested another unblock, and I thought, well, they will by now have changed their password, so I don't see why I can't unblock them now. It must have been pretty rough for them to have to be put through being suspected of trolling, when in-fact it wasn't actually them that was using their account at the time.
  • Interviewer: Do you have any concrete proof that this hijacking actually happened?
  • C.Syde: Yes, I have a picture of it, a picture that was given to me by the disruptive user as proof that the other user was foolish enough to give them their password.
  • Interviewer: Could you show me the picture?
  • C.Syde: No.
  • Interviewer: Why not?
  • C.Syde: It contains that sort of personal information that could possibly risk violation of wikia policies, if I were to share it. The picture has been deleted, and although I can restore it, I'm not fool enough to do that. I had to report that disruptive user to wikia staff for presenting that picture to me, and to delete that picture as they'd posted it to their wiki. I have other related sources of information, which I strictly do not speak of.
  • Interviewer: So it's as if you don't actually know this information?
  • C.Syde: Correct. And that's not going to change anytime soon.
  • Interviewer: Okay, but let's get back to discussing the issue surrounding the hijacked account.
  • C.Syde: A little while after I'd unblocked that account, I received a message from what seemed to be the owner of the account, requesting that I joined them in chat. And so I entered the C.Syde's Wiki Chat. [1]
  • Interviewer: (Reads)......I suspect that you were very confused, am I right?
  • C.Syde: Yes. As I said before, I trusted that since they said that they would change their password, I believed that they would know how to change it themselves. So naturally I just couldn't understand what was happening. It made no sense. She said that she was through with him, but now it seemed that he had persuaded her to give him another chance and she accepted without question. But then I received a message on google hangouts. [2]
  • Interviewer: (Reads)......And that was all you needed to finally understand what was happening, and what you needed to do?
  • C.Syde: It helped me a lot. Mind you I probably would have discovered that the disruptive user still had access to the account sooner, had I thoroughly read every word of every edit they'd made under the account, but at the time I was concentrating fully on reverting the bad faith edits, and deleting them upon discovering that my believe that the disruptive user was making those bad faith edits under the user's account was correct. I bet the disruptive user didn't see that coming. But of course while I was still in chat, I decided to pretend that I still didn't know that it was the disruptive user speaking. I decided to play along with it, and wait for any obvious signs that would give their true identity away, which I previously hadn't noticed, since I didn't realise that it was the disruptive user, and not the true owner of the account. [3] Once I had banned the account from chat (I wasn't sure at the time if the "kick" option worked on chat moderators, even though I was an administrator) I asked the real owner of the account exactly what they had said on chat, and what the disruptive user had said.
  • Interviewer: Looking at the first and third reference you presented to me, the comments that weren't crossed out are the ones that the real owner of the account said, and the comments that were crossed out are the ones the disruptive user said?
  • C.Syde: BINGO.

Account Hijack and the Global Block

(Discussed as of 19th September 2015)

  • Interviewer: So on the 21st July 2015, this user reported reported the account which they'd hijacked so that the owner of the account could take the fall for what the disruptive user did.
  • C.Syde: Yes. I did my best to report them, to both VSTF and Wikia staff, explaining that it was them that hacked the account, and it was really their doing that cost the user their ability to use that account. Well VSTF insisted that I use Special:Contact/general much to my irritation, since VSTF generally respond to VSTF reports quicker than Wikia staff do to Special:Contact. I began using both features to report users, but it wasn't until I was blocked from editing the VSTF wiki, that I fully understood why I shouldn't use the feature outside it's designed purpose, or as they addressed it "abusing the reports feature". But that aside, I was able to request an unblock on the community central wiki, but the VSTF that blocked me said that I needed to contact Wikia staff to unblock me. I did that, but the Wikia staff member that responded said that I needed to contact VSTF since they said that it was VSTF's job to take action, since it was a local block, not a global one. Eventually the Wikia staff member persuaded VSTF to unblock me, and I haven't directly abused the reports feature since.
  • Interviewer: So what about the request you made for Wikia staff to unblock this account and this one?
  • C.Syde: I sent it, but they said that the user in question had to request the unblock themselves.
  • Interviewer: So you requested the unblock for them, but Wikia staff turned it down saying that the user had to do it themselves, but when they did it themselves, Wikia staff refused to lift the blocks?
  • C.Syde: Not even that, they didn't even respond[2], according to the user that was globally blocked. It was as if they hadn't sent an unblock request.

Erroneous conclusions about a particular sock-puppet

(Discussed as of 23rd September 2015)

  • Interviewer: Honestly, I think you ought to explain on behalf of this user, that this account is not theirs, and that the user of the account was innocent all along.
  • C.Syde: No I can't do that. I won't do it.
  • Interviewer: But you must do it.
  • C.Syde: There's no must about it. It's not that I don't want to do it. It's just that it seems unlikely that there's any way one can make others see the truth, without requesting a check user. I mean there's no significant proof that these two users are different. The user did not explicitly say "No I am not this user, you made an error and I wish to be unblocked". And without a check user, the only evidence that the two users are different, without counting the fact that the user added slightly different user-boxes to their page, is this user's word. And the word of a user who has been found guilty of sock-puppetry on many occasions, not to mention being falsely accused of trolling, won't convince enough users, if any, to successfully clear this user of all charges. They've been cleared of all charges on my wiki, but not on others.
  • Interviewer: Is there anything else that may create the impression that these two users are the same?
  • C.Syde: The cross wiki vandal, troll, and sock-puppeteer that has been the subject of some of our discussions for quite some time, promoted them to administrator and bureaucrat on a couple of wikis, the troll was a bureaucrat on, and the user has not removed those wikis from their list of favourite wikis. The most likely reason is that the user has abandoned their account, believing that all hope of them being cleared of all charges are lost.

A Mysterious "Helper"

(Discussed as of 8th October 2015)

  • Interviewer: Were there any other users that were trying to help sanction this user, when the founder of that wiki decided they no longer wanted that user as bureaucrat on their wiki, and they refused to step down freely?
  • C.Syde: There was myself, them, and them. But there was also a fourth user, who mysteriously came to help us deal with the bad user. They obviously had some wikia experience before coming to help us. The founder of the wiki promoted them to administrator, and then I promoted them to bureaucrat, so they wouldn't fall victim to the disruptive user who wasn't behaving themselves. They said they would send a message to wikia staff requesting that the disruptive user, and some past troll users which they'd promoted for no apparent reason, except for disruption's sake, would have their rights revoked. I myself sent a message to wikia staff requesting that their rights, along with the rights of all the bad users they'd promoted, revoked.
  • Interviewer: Then what.
  • C.Syde: A couple of days later I went on that wiki to find that that wiki had been closed down. I tried to contact the "mysterious" user to try and find out if they knew anything about why that wiki was closed down, but there was no response. And we haven't had any direct contact with, or spoken directly with one another for months.

Troll User in trouble with VSTF

(Discussed as of 8th October 2015)

  • Interviewer: Anything you are proud to have been a part of recently?
  • C.Syde: Yes, well I'd discovered that this user had added all these bogus reports the user report page - even after they'd promised not to be disruptive anymore - including this user who was never a sock-puppet of that user in the first place. Well, I knew what I had to do. I added their username to the list. Yes I know I spellt harassment wrong, but it wasn't important. I would have removed the bogus reports, but you know what the VSTF are like. They insist that nobody removes the reports but themselves.
  • Interviewer: And then what happened?
  • C.Syde: A minute later I discovered this, thanks to my g-mail inbox of course. I looked at it, and I knew at once, as I had expected, that that user had overstepped their authority by undoing my edit without consulting me or VSTF. I tried to undo their revert, but before I was able to do that, this happened instead. I responded to the issue with this, and the VSTF responded with this. Them trolls never learn do they? Power is gained through good faith edits, not through trolling.

An Administrator on the Sims wiki at last

(Discussed as of 24th October 2015)

  • Interviewer: So. Who's an administrator on the Sims wiki now huh?
  • C.Syde: I have no idea what you're on about. But it looks like my recent nomination for administrator-ship was a success, and not only that. It looks like I won't be needing a certain someone to discuss these matters with, any longer.
  • Interviewer: What are you talking about?
  • C.Syde: Sir. Interviewer, or Mr. "whatever you call it", now that we've covered up almost, if not everything that prevented me from seeking my administrative rights, and everything that helped to get me those rights, I won't be needing to discuss anything with you any longer. I don't want to have to do this, but what choice do I have? I'm going to have to sack you!
  • Interviewer: I have no idea what you're on about. All I know is that I resigned from my position as your interviewer yesterday, so you no longer have an interviewer to sack.
  • C.Syde: Oh, well. Okay, so I guess we'll see each other again sometime, Mr. Interviewer (who doesn't really exist in real life anyways).
  • Interviewer: So long, good luck with your new tools as an administrator! :)
  • C.Syde: Goodbye! :)

A disruptive cross wiki vandal, troll, and sock-puppeteer

(Discussed as of 16th June 2015)

  • Interviewer: What about your problems with this disruptive cross wiki vandal, troll, and sock-puppeteer.
  • C.Syde: Well? I've never actually had to put up with such a disruptive user before. I was nervous that they might succeed in wrongly accusing me of committing vandalism and trolling, especially given that a local IP user was in-fact responsible for harassing a user on my behalf. I didn't mind that they were doing it, at least until people began asking me if I was the one doing all this, which I wasn't. They asked me, because they apparently recognised the IP address to be around the same location as my own. Fortunately I was able to stop this IP user from harassing users that are directly or indirectly responsible for some of my problems faced as an editor, telling them that I would report them if they didn't stop.
  • Interviewer: So what about this issue and this?
  • C.Syde: It was all a misunderstanding on both my part, and the user who issued the "unnecessary and illegitimate" warning on my user page. I countered the issue with this. And fortunately the wiki where this issue took place has been closed down. So this issue is now null and void. And if any users attempt to create any justification on this, I will be very annoyed, especially without solid proof that such an issue ever happened, thanks to the closure of that said wiki. And if anyone digs up the remains of this wiki, then that only indicates that they're simply looking for excuses not to support my next RfA. And my next RfA won't be for another month and a half at least, so by that time, those issues will be dead. So any rationale user shouldn't consider digging this stuff up, because any rationale user should know that 30 days is plenty of time for someone to address, learn from, and move on from past issues.

Sock-puppet hunting speculation, and RfA support

(Discussed as of 22nd June 2015)

  • Interviewer: Anything else you would like to comment on, any concerns?
  • C.Syde: Well? Some users do tend to perceive me as a sock-puppet hunter. I'm not a true sock-puppet hunter. A true sock-puppet hunter is someone who actively goes round looking for sock-puppets rather than spending most of their energy on editing. I do happen to run into more sock-puppets than most users but that doesn't necessarily make me a sock-puppet hunter. I'm just the sort of person that has a knack for noticing that kind of stuff.
  • Interviewer: Okay. So let's talk about your concerns over the amount of support, opposition, neutral votes, and the participation from users in formal voting discussions, namely RfA.
  • C.Syde: Well? A real concern I've noticed is that some RfAs such as my own are really lacking in the participation from users who aren't administrators (that is to say users who aren't or have not had administrator rights at some point during their time as an editor, both on the wiki in question, and on external wikis.
  • Interviewer: Okay, so what do you think stops most participation from non-administrators, or inexperienced users.
  • C.Syde: I'm picking up the feeling that perhaps oppositions such as this make the users that would otherwise support my RfA afraid to participate in the discussion, let alone give me their support. Infact sometimes I wish there was a policy that would allow inexperienced users and non administrators to support or oppose my RfA and then allow the administrators and more experienced users to have their say. I'm sure the support would be greater and consensus would be reached in those circumstances.

Looking back on a misuse of the Rollback tool

(Discussed as of 23rd June 2015)

  • Interviewer: I sense that you would like to look back on this mistake, and tell me what you think of it?
  • C.Syde: Oh yeah, definitely. I must admit that was pretty dumb, but certainly not warranted as an issue on my second RfA nonetheless given that it was raised nearly 3 months before my second RfA. When I saw this I was fully aware that they were removing the swear word hint, not adding it. But that was what tricked me into believing that it was a self revert. I didn't bother to scroll down and find out that they had added valid information to the table underneath, because the swear word hint had convinced me that the IP user was acting in bad faith, and that they removed the swear word hint to avoid being caught. Not to mention my sharp eyes were a little blunt that day, and my eyes were blind to the fact that it was a talk page. So without further ado I reverted the edits by that contributor. I was seconds away from issuing them a warning when I received a message informing me that I had miscalculated.
  • Interviewer: Any further explanations as to what inspired you to revert what you thought was a blatant bad faith edit, self reverted or not?
  • C.Syde: I'd already caught an anon self reverting a bad faith edit they made here. I reverted their edits anyway, to signify their wrongdoing, regardless if it had already been undone. And I issued them a warning. I guess I was a little too quick to assume that that second anon was also self reverting a blatant bad faith edit which they'd made. Especially when I had unknowingly added back the swear word reference that had caused me to revert their edits in the first place.

Why don't I think people should be concerned about promoting me to administrator

(Discussed as of 23rd June 2015)

  • Interviewer: Why don't you think people should still be concerned about promoting you to administrator?
  • C.Syde: Well, believe it or not, being an administrator actually results in fewer mistakes on my part, not more. The admin tools keep me stable, they keep my head in place. And you know all those rumours that I'd be too strict as an administrator? Well on the contrary, I tend to soften up when I'm an administrator. Turns out I'm only strict for as long as I don't have the tools that allow me to actively sanction bad users. When I don't have the tools to block users, I'm like "I can act strict all I want, blah blah blah". But when I actually have the tools, I can't be that strict because even as an administrator I still need to be fair right? And I still need to follow the rules.

Your initial attitude to the idea of locking the Sims wiki admin portal talk page to administrators only

(Discussed as of 26th June 2015)

  • Interviewer: You wouldn't mind telling me about your initial attitude towards the idea of the Sims wiki admin portal talk page being locked to administrators only, would you?
  • C.Syde: I suppose not. Well, my conscience roared it's approval of my opposition to the idea, exclaiming "How would they like it if wikia staff randomly decided to come along, demote all the administrators and bureaucrats, put us roll-backers forward in their place, and we decided to lock the talk page so that only we could edit it?" I know that the idea of having an admin portal talk page is that it's supposed to be a talk page for discussion amongst administrators, but I still feel that certain non-administrators (namely roll-backers and prospective administrators) should be given the choice to participate in the discussions if they choose to.

Informing administrators on missed typos on fully protected pages etc.

(Discussed as of 26th June 2015)

  • Interviewer: Do you think the number of times you've had to inform administrators of miss-titled images, Media Wiki codes, broken links, and typos on fully protected pages should serve as evidence that you are ready for admin-ship.
  • C.Syde: Obviously. I'm surprised that some people might still mistakenly think that I'm not ready for admin-ship, even after being responsible for informing administrators about red links, media wiki codes, miss-titled images and typos such as this, this, this, this, this, this, and this. I think it's silly for people to not give me credit after all this. Especially given that I could quite easily and effortlessly done those things myself and not make any errors. And I've proven that I know how to delete pages, block users etc.

Approved or not approved candidate outcomes taken by surprise

(Discussed as of 26th June 2015)

  • Interviewer: Does it sometimes surprise you or lead you to question why some users who clearly aren't fully polished off get promoted and others don't?
  • C.Syde: Yes of course. It strikes me how some applicants pass their RfA even though they still need to work on their blocking and deleting skills. While others pass their RfA despite making mostly simple minor edits. I'm not trying to be rude, but it does concern me what might happen if an administrator who did mostly minor edits, began to move to major edits. What if they weren't accustomed to doing complex edits? Or what if an approved administrator made any blunders with the block tools? I for one am quite careful and well practiced when using the block tools but it concerns me what the worst that could happen if an administrator who was less accustomed to blocking came into contact with the block tools.

Protecting your account, and your wiki against disruptive users

(Discussed as of 28th August 2015)

  • Interviewer: Would you mind if I discussed with you, your methods for blocking disruptive users?
  • C.Syde: Not at all.
  • Interviewer: Okay, so would I be correct in saying that when you first created this wiki, you blocked many accounts for a few minutes / seconds before unblocking them?
  • C.Syde: Back when I first started this wiki, I liked to horse around a lot, and then on the 6th January this year, I temporarily blocked some accounts. I just wanted to see which user groups could be blocked by Administrators and Bureaucrats and which groups could not. I didn't block these accounts because they were disruptive, and I explained this in my block summaries.
  • Interviewer: What about these days?
  • C.Syde: As of the 11th February 2015, I only blocked accounts that were disruptive, even those that hadn't necessarily attempted to edit here.
  • Interviewer: Could this explain one of the reasons, a certain user decided to troll on this wiki, in addition to other wikis?
  • C.Syde: Perhaps.
  • Interviewer: Were you pleased to be given the chance to put your administrative tools to some serious administrative purposes?
  • C.Syde: I was very pleased to be given the opportunity to administrate properly, instead of being a "practice" administrator. It made me feel a lot more like a real administrator, which I was in-fact, on this wiki and a few other smaller wikis.
  • Interviewer: Did the fun and joy of blocking a troublesome user who was a cross wiki troll, vandal and sock-puppeteer, wear off after a while?
  • C.Syde: The pleasure I get out of most things wear off after a while. So I guess so.

Opposition towards a certain user comes to an end.

(Discussed as of 28th August 2015)

  • Interviewer: Do you think you could tell me why you decided to unblock this user and let them contribute to this wiki, if they wanted to?
  • C.Syde: Yes. Well this other user offered to "join forces" with that user, but their true intentions were to continue their cyber-bullying behaviour. When they talked that user into reporting my wiki, and a VSTF member removed the bogus report, I decided to report them to wikia staff.
  • Interviewer: So what became of your request via Special:Contact/general?
  • C.Syde: A member of wikia staff said the best practice for me would be to ignore the fact that the user had created numerous sock-puppet accounts on the Sims wiki, and treat them like everyone else. They said that the only times I really should publicly oppose these sorts of users were if they intentionally caused disruption across wikia. I decided to give that another chance because they never intentionally did anything in bad faith, and because I felt that the best way to solve these social issues that I'd been having would be to show that user that I no longer had anything against them, and thus they didn't need to feel "provoked" by my former opposition towards them.

A Retired Bureaucrat, out of retirement or not?

(Discussed as of 31st August 2015)

  • Interviewer: What was your reaction upon seeing this?
  • C.Syde: I'm not really sure to be honest. It came as a surprise more than anything. It confused me as to why that user decided to return to the Sims wiki after more than five years of inactivity. I know that users can stay inactive for years, but it came as a surprise nonetheless.
  • Interviewer: I see that the user requested for their bureaucrat rights to be reinstated? Could you explain your reaction to that?
  • C.Syde: At first I couldn't understand why the user would be requesting for their bureaucrat rights to be reinstated when they'd never been revoked in the first place. Also I was a tad confused as to why they would have forgotten the password to their old e-mail. If the e-mail was really that important, then why would they allow themselves to forget the password?
  • Interviewer: Why indeed.
  • C.Syde: I'm not trying to say that it's weird for someone to forget the password to their old e-mail, but it did come across as sounding a bit, you know, not quite typical. I did consider replying with a comment such as "Your bureaucrat rights have not been revoked". But then I clicked the link to the user's user page, and discovered that this was actually a different account, but with a very similar username.
  • Interviewer: And then?
  • C.Syde: I eventually made the decision to reply with this. Now I'll be honest that I wasn't exactly warming up to the idea of having this user's rights reinstated. I know that there wasn't/isn't a maximum number of bureaucrats and administrators, but I feel that it's nicer to see other users getting promoted than it is to see the old faces having their rights reinstated. You know what I mean?
  • Interviewer: I think so. Yes. But then we've all got different perspectives.
  • C.Syde: Oh yeah definitely.
  • Interviewer: So let's talk about the nature of this user and their contributions. What was the impression they gave you?
  • C.Syde: They didn't seem very experienced. And they certainly didn't seem to meet the potential that I would have liked to have seen from a retired bureaucrat, or from a possible future bureaucrat. I for one undid one of their edits here. Now I'm not saying that being an administrator, or bureaucrat makes you do everything right, and I'm not saying that a bureaucrat, or former bureaucrat is unable to make mistakes. But I'm just saying that I would have expected them to at least examine the Sim's eye colour in-game, or examine the Sim's genetic code in SimPE.
  • Interviewer: Okay, but that aside, was this user revealed to be the same user as that one?
  • C.Syde: Several users - myself included - either believed that they were the same user, or assumed good faith and decided to not risk jumping to erroneous conclusions. But then eventually, the user was blocked when they were exposed as an imposter. Even though it was clear the user was inexperienced and clearly did not have the experience that I would have expected from a retired bureaucrat, I was nonetheless surprised when I discovered that they were an imposter.
  • Interviewer: Did you ever find out exactly who the imposter was?
  • C.Syde: Yes. Well I noticed that they had added me to their circles. I didn't mind this at first, since I was under the impression that they were wanting to sleep with bigger, and more experienced users to try and work their way towards regaining their bureaucrat rights. I believed that there would be benefits. If it meant that they would support me the next time I nominated myself, or became nominated for administrator rights, even though I would not have supported them, should they have obtained rollback rights and requested admin rights, since I believed them to be too inexperienced.
  • Interviewer: But how exactly did you find out who the imposter was?
  • C.Syde: When I discovered that they'd been blocked, I checked the circles of their google account, and found that they'd also added another - particular - account to their circles. This is what put me under the impression that they were in-fact the same user who was convicted to being a cross wiki troll, vandal, and sock-puppeteer. I won't directly mention the name of the user I'm referring to. But I took a photo showing their g-mail account, and that I'd blocked them, as proof, along with some more proof that I'd found during that time which can't and won't be displayed publicly, but it became clear to me exactly who the imposter was.
  • Interviewer: Now we're getting to the bottom of the actions of the imposter, how they came to be exposed, and who they came to be exposed as. But carry on...
  • C.Syde: So I'd blocked their google account, forcing them to lose contact with my google account, blocked their wikia account from contributing to my wiki, and I reported them to VSTF. The Volunteer Spam Task Force globally blocked them and cleaned up their contributions across wikia, but I felt that their behaviour needed to be dealt with further, so I reported them to wikia staff, asking for their account to be globally disabled. If the real user discovered this imposter, I imagine they would have been pretty disgusted. I had already used the same sort of hidden source of evidence I found to expose and block many previous sock-puppet accounts of the disruptive user.

Avoiding broken links

(Discussed as of 26th December 2014)

  • Interviewer: If a page or image was nominated for deletion, what would you do?
  • C.Syde: I would delete it. But first I'd make sure that there weren't any articles or images that linked to it.
  • Interviewer: If a page or image was miss-titled, what would you do?
  • C.Syde: I would move it to it's correct location. But first I'd make sure that there weren't any articles or images that linked to the page's original title. As an administrator, I tend to not leave re-directs unless absolutely necessary.

Blocking users

(Discussed as of 26th December 2014)

  • Interviewer: In general do you tend to block an IP with an expiry time of indefinite?
  • C.Syde: No
  • Interviewer: Why not?
  • C.Syde: Because when you block an IP address, it runs the risk of blocking hundreds of innocent users, should the IP address be used by several users.
  • Interviewer: When you block a user, do you first make sure that the user you're blocking has been proven guilty?
  • C.Syde: Yes. But there have been situations in the past as a non-administrator when I haven't fully researched an issue at hand. But those happened months ago, so it's not relevant to be concerned about now.
  • C.Syde: I'm not too quick to reach for the block tool too quickly, since the block tool is far more serious than the rollback button. And it's been at least two months since the last time I've misused the rollback tool. I won't be misusing the rollback tool again any time soon. So you can trust that I'd be able to use the block tool wisely.

Editing inside the MediaWiki namespace

(Discussed as of 30th December 2014)

  • Interviewer: Do you know what MediaWiki is?
  • C.Syde: It is a free software open source wiki package written in PHP, which is notably used by admins on the wikipedia, and wikia.
  • Interviewer: Do you use it?
  • C.Syde: Yes I use MediaWiki on my wiki which I have founded, and have administrator rights. I also use them on another wiki where I was given administrator rights without even asking for them. Apparently I was given those rights because I claimed to have some administrator experience.
  • Interviewer: Are you an experienced user of MediaWiki?
  • C.Syde: Yes and no. I'm quite confident with making simple MediaWiki pages such as this one. But I have to admit, I'm still not very good at using CSS. But I don't see any reasons for using CSS on any wiki besides my wiki.

Assuming Good Faith

(Discussed as of 1st January 2015)

  • Interviewer: Do you know what Assume good faith is?
  • C.Syde: It's when you assume that another user is contributing positively, whether or not their contributions are correct.
  • Interviewer: Have you ever failed to assume it?
  • C.Syde: A few times. But I've never intentionally acted in bad faith, and I haven't failed to assume it on purpose. My actions have improved considerably over these last few months, and in any case it's unfair to criticise people for mistakes they've made over a month ago.

Why would I want to serve a wiki as an administrator?

(Discussed as of 8th January 2015)

  • Interviewer: Why do you want to serve that wiki as an administrator?
  • C.Syde: Because I wish to be able to help ensure the function of the wiki through vandalism prevention, and edit protected pages if necessary. I want to be there to help the wiki, and there are some tasks that can't be handled by non-administrators.
  • C.Syde: Also I've constantly had to ask administrators to do administrative tasks for me, like re-naming an image, or fixing a typo on a protected page, or removing a broken link from a protected page. I know that being an admin is not all fun and games, but I can't stop thinking - what if I could do those things, so I wouldn't have to ask? Sometimes I might have to ask for consent from other users, before doing those tasks, but what if I could do them?

Do I think I'd make a good administrator?

(Discussed as of 8th January 2015)

  • Interviewer: Do you think you'd be a good administrator?
  • C.Syde: Yes I do. It's been nearly half a year since the last time I falsely suspected a user for sock-puppetry and I have deeply regretted jumping to that erroneous conclusion ever since. Also since my first RfA was declined, I have become more relaxed and laid back, rather than over eager to be involved in absolutely everything.
  • Interviewer: Do you think that other users should still have concerns about promoting you?
  • C.Syde: No. Mistakes come and go. I've made little to no mistakes lately. And most of those mistakes we've been discussing happened months ago. So being concerned about those mistakes would now be redundant. I may have made several mistakes in October, but that was when I was still struggling to carve a new identity and hopefully move on from the guy who made so many mistakes. Moving from lots of mistakes to only a few was a tough change, but I think I took the pressure just fine.
  • Interviewer: Do you think you understand the concept of being an administrator?
  • C.Syde: I have read several pages about what admin-ship is and what it isn't, and it's been nearly seven months since I began this research. I also couldn't have learned more about how to use the admin tools and when to use them, without my wiki, which has been keeping me busy, and cutting into the time that I might instead have wasted on making mistakes on the Sims wiki. And I can use the admin tools on my wiki whenever I want. And thus, I can safely say that I understand the concept of being an administrator.

My first application for administrator-ship

(Discussed as of 9th January 2015)

  • Interviewer: What about your first application for administrator-ship? Do you have anything to say about it?
  • C.Syde: It wasn't the request that I should have made at the time. I was hoping that most of the other community members on the Sims wiki would be prepared to overlook my mistakes in favour of my positive contributions. I must admit, it was a rather foolish thing to hope for.

Erroneous conclusions on a potential sock-puppet

(Discussed as of 9th January 2015)

  • Interviewer: Now is it true that you made a false assumption about a potential sock-puppet of a certain user back in mid June 2014?
  • C.Syde: Well? Yes and no. I didn't exactly assume that that was a sock-puppet, like some might think. It was really just a "possibility", not an outright assumption. Had I known that none of the admins on the Sims wiki were check users, I probably wouldn't have jumped to such a conclusion. But yes, I should have checked to see exactly when this account was active, and I should have done a better job of researching their behaviour at hand. I admit it was very foolish, knowing that the page where I discovered the existence of that account hadn't been edited for at least half a year.

An edit that could have been construed as a personal attack

(Discussed as of 14th January 2015)

  • Interviewer: Is it true that you added the name of an unconfirmed sock-puppet account to your list of sock-puppets of a blocked user in late October 2014?
  • C.Syde: Yes, but at the time when I was doing it, it was done so for one reason and one reason only. It was intended as a note for myself that that user could have been a sock-puppet, and if any administrator saw it, I hoped that they would question whether or not my assumption might have been correct.
  • Interviewer: And did they question your assumption?
  • C.Syde: No they didn't. Instead my assumption was dismissed as a "clear demonstration of lack of good faith". I never actually planned on violating good faith. I was just sure that that user was a sock-puppet.
  • Interviewer: Exactly how did you come to suspect that the user was a sock-puppet and why?
  • C.Syde: When they spoke to be on chat, I immediately noticed that they shared the same behaviour, interests and grammar as all the previous sock-puppets belonging to that blocked user. Also they shared the same reluctance to add any details to their user-page that would give them away. And while their avatar didn't give their identity away, I found it to be rather suspicious.
  • Interviewer: So what exactly happened to your revision that had the name of the unconfirmed sock?
  • C.Syde: All references relating to the blocked user and their sock-puppets were removed and the revision that had the name of an unconfirmed sock was deleted. I didn't mean for it to happen. I'd already added a note to the sandbox about a previous sock of the blocked user earlier that month, which at the time had not been confirmed. So naturally I didn't realise that such speculation was totally unacceptable. I've still got a copy of that revision, but it's hidden in the servers for the best.
  • Interviewer: Was that user proven to be a sock-puppet of the blocked user?
  • C.Syde: A few days later, yes. And when it happened, I said "Hey, I was proven right wasn't I?" By that time I'd given up on making notes about that user and their sock-puppets, because it felt like a waste of time, not to mention I never gained a positive response for reporting any socks that I coincidentally ran into. But that all happened more than two months ago, so it's no longer important to keep in mind.

Debating whether an admin portal to be locked to administrators only

(Discussed as of 15th January 2015)

  • Interviewer: So is it true that you debated whether an admin portal should be locked to administrators only?
  • C.Syde: Yes, back in June 2014. But at the time I didn't realise that it wasn't possible to allow roll-backers and other experienced users to actively participate in discussions on such pages, without allowing regular users, or inexperienced users as well. I have always felt and probably will always feel a sense, that it's more up to the user than their user rights. Sure certain rights are usually only granted to experienced users, but I felt that locking a certain talk page from non administrative edits would create the impression that admin-ship automatically made a user more experienced and non-admin-ship automatically made a user less experienced which we know is false.
  • Interviewer: Do you miss not being able to edit certain pages, that were previously open to the community?
  • C.Syde: Yes and no. I will always feel a sense that locking a talk page to editors with certain privileges only, defies the idea of equality. I know that equality doesn't mean that everyone is the same. But that completely ignores the reality of how my initial perspective came to be. As of the 15th January 2015, the said talk page in question had not been edited since the 10th November 2014 which is over two months. Whereas most of these "less sensitive" discussions now take place on this page. While this may seem like a kind of defeat and the end of the idea of equality, I am relieved that the said APTP is no longer a high traffic page, which kind of gives the idea that maybe the AN is the superior page relation of the APTP, not the other way around. That's something that really makes me think.
  • Interviewer: Should you never become an administrator on the said wiki, would that make you feel let down?
  • C.Syde: Probably. But then I have my own wiki, so hopefully I might be able to provide a source of proof that I am capable of using admin tools for the right reasons.

Concerns raised in my second RfA

(Discussed as of 14th June 2015)

  • Interviewer: What was your reaction upon seeing this issue raised in your second RfA?
  • C.Syde: I was quite surprised, and admittedly rather irritated upon discovering that an old issue from November 2014 had been brought up in my second RfA which happened in February 2015. According to my creed, an issue should only be raised if it's a maximum of 30 days old. That issue was by that point, about 85 days old. That's just completely unheard of, and way past 30 days. I would have made an uproar, except it would have further damaged my second RfA's chances of passing, so I resisted the temptation.
  • Interviewer: What was your reaction upon seeing this issue raised in your second RfA?
  • C.Syde: Once again, completely unnecessary, and roughly 49 days old by that point. Also there was no proof that I did that to bump up my edit count. That was all speculation. I was removing red links from the talk pages of ancient IP addresses to lessen the number of wanted pages, and to a lesser extent, to bump up my "helpfulness" count, which should have gained a positive response from the start. Also, who cares if they're talk pages? They are the talk pages of users that have not registered with an account. Most unregistered users couldn't give a damn if they've been pinged because someone removed a red link from their talk page. It's the registered users alone that would care, as far as I'm concerned. And if the unregistered users did care, they'd register for an account, or they'd just suck it up. That's just a downside of being unregistered. No big deal!
  • Interviewer: What was your reaction upon seeing this issue raised in your second RfA?
  • C.Syde: That shouldn't even have been an issue! It happened roughly 47 days before my second RfA started. And also hello! I did explain my reasoning behind that issue, and my reasoning was in-fact very valid and fully permissible. And that should have totally dissolved that "issue". It's not my fault if other users can't be bothered to look on the said user's talk page, to see if I left any reasoning there. From then on I decided that I would respond to such issues on my own talk page to prevent any users from raising them as concerns in future requests for user rights, should they be too short sighted and narrow minded to bother looking for my reasoning on the talk page of the user who raised the concern in the first place. Once again, that's completely unheard of! Wake up!
  • Interviewer: What was your reaction upon seeing this issue raised in your second RfA?
  • C.Syde: Well? That was 29 days ago, except that I did rebound on that issue and explained where I went "wrong". So that issue should have been cleared or semi-cleared.
  • Interviewer: What was your reaction upon seeing this issue raised in your second RfA?
  • C.Syde: Well? That was 11 days ago, so admittedly that issue was more relevant than the earlier ones, but it was only a minor issue, and it was very unlikely that my conclusion could have turned out to be a blunder. For one thing, the nature of that IP user resembled the nature of the user with the said account. And when I checked the IP location several months later, it turned out that they were from the same location. Also that page had already been archived, so why was it being modified?

References

  1. Also according to popups, the user that was accused of being a sock-puppet identifies as male, while the user they were being accused of being a sock-puppet of identifies as female.
  2. It was later confirmed that Wikia Staff actually had responded. However it remains unknown exactly what they said, since the response did not appear in the user's info-box or indeed in any of their other g-mail folders.

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