Commons talk:Project scope/Pages, galleries and categories

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I should explain my reasons for reverting this edit. This page is itself part of the definition of "Scope", so to use "out of scope" here introduces an inconsistent self-reference. Also, since these scope pages are crucial to the project and are always being used to support or deny deletion requests, I don't think amendments that have the potential to generate argument should be made without significant discussion beforehand. This one could well do that, given the live issue of the use on a userpage of File:No Israel.svg. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 11:41, 10 January 2009 (UTC)

Hmm, you're right. I made this edit because, as you said, these pages are always used to support (or deny) deletion requests, and I've seen some deletion requests for personal images which were in use. I didn't think about the other issue at all (because I thought it was part of another Commons policy). Diti the penguin 12:18, 10 January 2009 (UTC)
As the policy now was written, you had to read Project Scope to get a hint that you may upload a photo of yourself. I add a link to the relevant section and this specific example. --LPfi (talk) 05:57, 9 October 2010 (UTC)

The use of userpages to advance personal political opinions[edit]

Commons userpages should not in my view be used as a forum to advance personal political or other opinions which are totally unrelated to the free media work we are trying to do here. Personal political opinions are often divisive and may easily cause offence to others, particularly when they are expressed as an opposition to a view that others may strongly hold. The content of the opinion is irrelevant, since Commons itself is or should be neutral on matters of concience. Thus, the statements "This user says no to Israel!" and "This user says no to Palestine!" are equally divisive, and neither should be allowed on userpages.

I propose replacing the last bullet point on this page with the following text. Newly added content is shown below in italic, for ease of reference:

  • Content that does not advance Commons' aims, including but not limited to:
  • anything apparently created and/or posted for the purpose of vandalism or attack (including attacks against individuals, groups, nationalities and states)
  • polemical statements unrelated to Commons' aims, including political and religious polemics
  • Postings which are intended to disrupt the operation of Commons, or which deliberately aim to provoke other users
  • advertising or excessive linking to external domains. Blatant self-promotion is prohibited, but regular Commons contributors are allowed a certain amount of leeway and discreet links to relevant web pages elsewhere are normally permitted.
The fact that a media file is validly hosted on Commons (ie is itself in scope) does not necesarily mean it is acceptable on a userpage if its use there fails the above tests.

Please note that this proposal relates to userpages postings only, and has no effect on the rules for determining whether a particular media file is itself in scope or not. It is not a proposal to limit or to censor Commons' media content. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 21:31, 17 January 2009 (UTC)

Comment: If you are coming here without a knowledge of the background you may like to read Commons:Administrators' noticeboard/User problems#Use of File:No Israel.svg with text "YEAH, NO ISRAEL" by User:OsamaK before voting. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 11:03, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

Now at Commons:Administrators' noticeboard/Archives/User problems 8#Use of File:No Israel.svg with text "YEAH, NO ISRAEL" by User:OsamaK. Ben Aveling 22:55, 7 February 2009 (UTC)

Opinions and comments[edit]

Symbol support vote.svg For such a modification, given the arguments the current version does create. Diti the penguin 21:41, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Against such a modification. It makes me remind of the current issue about that at fr.wikipedia, which begun more than a month ago. It is an unfinishable source of discussion and mixed points of views, and the time we take to discuss about it is time we loose on useful contributions. Diti the penguin 09:46, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol neutral vote.svg Neutral Some users will use any rule to make problems. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 21:50, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
    Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose I agree with Swift and Esby that this will not solve anything. Just be mellow about what other users have on their user pages, and do not be provoked by flags, by sex, etcetera. /Pieter Kuiper (talk) 10:20, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support any measures which reduce unnecessary distraction to the work of Commons. Adambro (talk) 21:53, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol neutral vote.svg I almost support (changed -- ChrisiPK (Talk|Contribs) 22:46, 17 January 2009 (UTC)) this modification. The only thing I am concerned about is us regulating every tiny bit. This should be restricted to extreme cases. Saying I don't like soccer should still be allowed. Regards, -- ChrisiPK (Talk|Contribs) 21:59, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
I agree totally, and the rules suggested would allow that. Such wording is not a political polemic, nor an attack, and would not presumably be intended to disrupt. The occasional user-eccentricity like that could cause no reasonable offence, and little comments/jokes can in the end support Commons not least by encouraging users to help and support one another. It is the deliberately divisive statements that we should aim to control. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 22:03, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
Symbol support vote.svg I support under these circumstances. However, I would like to see disrupt the operation of Commons extended to other projects. I am thinking of the ME case, where the talk page was used to rant about admins on de.wp. I don't think that belongs here either. Regards, -- ChrisiPK (Talk|Contribs) 22:46, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support. Though I understand ChrisiPK's concern, it seems we are nearly forced to such regulation as the causative issue has caused so much trouble among users over several weeks. --Túrelio (talk) 22:44, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Wikipedia is not an appropriate place for propaganda, advocacy, or recruitment of any kind, commercial, political, religious, or otherwise, opinion pieces on current affairs or politics, self-promotion, or advertising. I do not see why Commons should be different. Thank you Michael!--Mbz1 (talk) 22:53, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
  • I would make an exception for a bare statement of belief or feeling (in words) that is neutrally expressed, and is a positive statement rather than a negative one. (for instance "I am an East Anglian Libertarian", or "I support independence for Ipswitch.", but not "I support the destruction of Ipswitch") I don't see those as "polemical". Peter K. is right, any additional regulation is a chance for people to use that regulation in ways that are not constructive, which is unfortunate, but I think common sense will see us right. I wish we did not need this clarification at all, I think the scope statement already covers this well enough, but it's distracting to have to struggle to apply it in the face of resistance. So, Symbol support vote.svg Support, with regret that it's necessary. ++Lar: t/c 23:23, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
Some users may always make trouble, agreed, but clarity of scope does tend to reduce the opportunities for dispute. It has certainly been far easier to handle "out of scope" Deletion Requests since the Scope pages were re-written last August. Fewer grey areas for people to argue about. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 23:29, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose I am sorry, but It's not like expressing opinions on a user/talk page will change much things, it's not like opposing such opinions will also help in that matter. I honestly think it's a waste of time for both sides (and for Commons). I think most people are overestimating the impact of such user page images. I don't like at all the idea of not allowing such opinion, you'll always find borderline cases... Which means more problems and time wasted... For me, as long it stays an opinion it is fine, but if it becomes any form of lobbying, it's wrong. Esby (talk) 23:31, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Agree with premises (only I don think Ipswich should become independent ;-)). Lycaon (talk) 01:33, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Strong Oppose I see at best no reason for this change. There is nothing that drags anyone to user pages except an interest in that user. Under the current policy, user profiles are permissible. I'd say that political statements of any sort (e.g. "Bankrupt the thieving Icelanders!") should be in. We don't censor Commons media, and for a good reason. That same resason applies to user pages.
    Let's revise: this policy change will not reduce disruptions, but will simply move the discussion onto whether any particular material is polemic/offensive or not. Is anyone going to offer an objective definition of "offensive" that will neatly solve these issues without falling back on "common sense"?
    It appears to me that the main disruption caused by this content is in other users calling for the offensive material to be removed. Am I the only one to spot the irony, here? Rather than create a vague restriction on what is permissible, let's expect a little more of ourselves. --Swift (talk) 01:44, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support, seems necessary, since some people seem to keep the borders in there minds and showing their disrespect for people being different from them on a borderless worldwide project. --birdy geimfyglið (:> )=| 03:07, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Strong Oppose; معارضة شديدة. Unneeded change, will cause many unwanted problems.--OsamaK 03:52, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
    • This change is not a change in the project scope. It is a clarification. And... OsamaK you are a good part of why the wording apparently needs to be clarified. When it was explained to you, by several people, that your use of a particular image was out of scope, you did not accept that and insisted on your interpretation. With all due respect, your interpretation is wrong. With this change, there will be no doubt about it. ++Lar: t/c 06:26, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
      OsamaK didn't say that it was a change in the project scope. It is, however, a new limitation on personal profiles. That is a change. --Swift (talk) 07:41, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
      The problem has never been with me. First some tried to delete the image but the couldn't and they will never can. Then, other tried to devilize me in the RfA by unreasonable votes, many even didn't give reasons. After that, some tried asking me to remove it per policy, but they found nothing in the policy. Finally you (and I'm really sorry to see you getting involved in such way) tried changing the policy here. What you're recently doing is perfectly wrong, therefor please never imagine that I'll remove the image as long as there is no reasons except fool ones.--OsamaK 11:07, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
      Again and again, nothing to discuss or vote here. Please note me again when you find something reasonable.--OsamaK 03:35, 21 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support We document other people's opposition and hate but we do not use Commons as platform of our own political views. This means that documentation of existing hate can be within scope (e.g. a photo showing a riot that burns a flag) but the expressed opposition on user pages against other people, nations, ethnic groups, religions etc., perhaps even in combination with links to corresponding news articles or other sites, works against our project goals because of its unnecessary divisive character. I would, however, make an exception in regard to the support of freedoms that are of importance to the Wikimedia projects. --AFBorchert (talk) 09:05, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose: Content that does not advance Commons' aims, including but not limited to: - Even a gallery of user's Top10-Commons'-Images doesn't advance Commons' aims. I agree to every single example, but the general clause is far too indeterminate. sугсго 10:43, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Sorry, that's not right. Community-building activities like that are perfectly OK and always have been. The general wording was there already, and what we are now discussing is some specifics, all of which you say you agree with. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 10:59, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
But he doesn't find the clause determinate enough. It will always be indeterminate because words like "polemic" and "offensive" cannot be objectively defined (nor can decency which is why Commons media isn't censored). Any atttempt at a policy containing these will always cause a rift. Your policy proposal, MichaelMaggs, wouldn't reduce divisions. --Swift (talk) 14:41, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Invalid link to talk page, not useful or a good idea. --Herby talk thyme 18:51, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
A quick glance through the history is revealing. Care to explain why you saw it fit to edit my signature, MichaelMaggs? --Swift (talk) 06:44, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Sorry about that. I have absolutely no idea how that happened. The text does relate to a page I was looking at at about that time and I can only guess that I did an accidental paste from my clipboard. Aplogies in any event - it was certainly not intended. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 07:01, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for clearing it up. I was just a little paranoid that this discussion was turning ugly following a user's unconstructive comments on a related topic. --Swift (talk) 09:18, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
Hi Swift, you may not have noticed that the word "offensive" is not used, and I am not sure where you got that from. As to "rifts", feel free to ask any admin seriously involved in dealing with the Deletion Request backlogs whether or not it has helped since August to have clarity of scope for media files. Clarity is all I am aiming at, and clarity of rules reduces the level of conflict. But you needn't bother to repeat yourself: your personal view is already very clear, thanks. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 16:22, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
Hi MichaelMaggs, Sorry for using the word "offensive". I must have dragged it along from the previous chapters in this saga. That aside, the argument still stands. This is no three legged chair.
I don't question that the media scope clarification helped on that front. Do you think that a criteria like the one you are suggesting here would be seen as a clarification on media scope?
It is, indeed my personal opinion that there this proposal is not objective. The fact that numerous contributors here agree is justification enough. As for repetitions; I think this discussion is over until any new arguments are brought in. There is clearly no consensus for this to pass. --Swift (talk) 09:18, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose I think, we should not allow advertising. Advertising products just as advertising aggression against anybody. And we should possibly disallow statements of preference of illegal activities (like "I would like to kill X" [let X be any individual or group of persons], but only capital crimes [or globally agreed ones, like the human rights], not like "I like to smoke hash"). But we should not disallow uttering opinions. Even if they are divisive. By the way: in my evaluation of the test, OsamaK passes the test. "No to Israel" is no vandalism and no attack and not polemical and no advertising. The closest is "deliberately aim to provoke", but "deliberately aim to provoke" is also the vaguest point, cause we cannot look into other peoples thoughts to identify their "true motives". I think, Osamas motive is to utter his personal opinion. That his opinion provokes others is a side effect, but not the aim. --Slomox (talk) 16:26, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Censorship is waste of our time. Let´s care about our content and not about userpage warfare. Politicial statements at userpages are also useful to understand biases of concrete users and it is their good faith that they inform others about own biases. --Dezidor (talk) 17:02, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support. Dear oppose voters, please also read en:Wikipedia:SOAP#Wikipedia_is_not_a_soapbox. --EugeneZelenko (talk) 17:10, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
    There's nothing in that en.wp policy, that is not already considered in this discussion. Please be aware, that we are speaking about three words and an image on a user page and not about personal essays, pamphlets or floating discussion pages with personal opinions about the subject. --Slomox (talk) 17:29, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
    (Edit Conflict) Being opposed to this proposal do not necessary mean we want soapbox and wars. Don't forget that Commons is not Wikipedia. If we consider what you are saying, the best solution would be to forbid all kinds of user boxes and all kind of opinions, what ever they are. Take a look on the current issue, the 'yeah, no Israel' can be interpretated differently, does it mean: "I don't agree with the current israel actions?", does it mean "I hate Israel and I want to kill all israelians?". Don't forget to judge someone on his actions and not his opinions. Are we going to judge the same way people who states they likes "peter klashorst" photographs? On an other way, I'd appreciate that Osamak could reformulate or explain his opposition to Israel right next to the problematic captions, so people don't have the facility of complaining about it over the meaning that it is "supporting terrorism"
    Esby (talk) 17:42, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
    The only way I could interperate that image is as a call for there to be no Israel. How that is supposed to happen isn't specified, maybe he hopes that all Jews will convert to Christianity &/or move to somewhere else. But he is certainly calling for the end of Israel as we know it. Regards, Ben Aveling 23:33, 7 February 2009 (UTC)
    Pictogram voting comment.svg Comment Problem is that enforcing censorship will led to more wars and disputes than tolerance of usepages of another users. That´s not project purpose, it´s better to care about images, video, categories, descriptions, imagevios, quality images.... --Dezidor (talk) 17:54, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support The web is flooded with political blogs and forums. Wikimedia projects are about conveying knowledge, not about expressing opinions, not even in user pages. Drork (talk) 17:30, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
    • And this is your own point of view, right? It just like in every wiki you're allowed to express limited opinions, and sorry, you cannot cancel this right.--OsamaK 10:34, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support per so many of the above --Herby talk thyme 18:48, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose in its current wording: polemical is an arguable word and not easily understood in all countries (sexual polemics are missing), displacing the polemic to another level. Moreover, you are arguably limiting freedom of speech. Another way to formulate is to allow positive messages (support an independent Basque country, support Israel, I love IRA ...) but forbid negative and aggressive messages such as "Burn Bush", ... --Foroa (talk) 18:57, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
    I support the Hamas finishing the job, the Nazis didn't! - any better? sугсго 08:42, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
    See my comment above about statements of preference of illegal activities (where I already mentioned human rights violations). I support mass murder should indeed be disallowed by policy. --Slomox (talk) 15:54, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
    What is legal or illegal differs in time and from place to place. I hope you mean actual US law and laws of state Florida. --Dezidor (talk) 17:58, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
    I don't care about Florida or US law. As stated in my comment below, I speak about capital crimes. Crimes that are commonly agreed upon by all nations to be crimes and that are hurtful (physically or mentally) to humans. Like murder etc. Everything what is considered human rights. If somebody wants to state "I cheat on the tax return", "I steal pencils in the office" or "I park on disabled parking spots and I'm not disabled" it's okay, I guess. --Slomox (talk) 19:47, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
    Or to take up Foroa's example: "Burn Bush" is not acceptable in the literal sense, cause its a request for murder. "Kick Bush's ass" should be okay, cause although physical inviolability is a human right, a kick in the ass is no thread to physical inviolability, it causes no permanent damage. A case of doubt would be "I wish Bush would be dead". That's no request to kill him and no thread and no attack and also no statement of preference of illegal acts. I personally feel unsure whether "I wish Bush would be dead" should be a allowed statement, but I cannot come up with a good rule to exclude statements like that. I guess a wish should be handled like a request, cause wishes can easily be mistaken for requests (at least if they are uttered publicly). --Slomox (talk) 20:09, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support User pages are there to give other people an insight what one is doing on this project, and who one is, not to give political statements. There are a lot of free web space providers where one can easily get space for hundreds of kilobytes of political hatred and intolerance. On Wikimedia projects there is no space for that. Thanks, --Thogo (Disk.) 22:52, 18 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Per Thogo and many more. In an ideal Commons, Pieter Kuiper's "Just be mellow" approach above would be very desirable (that is actually my personal approach with non-Wikimedia related opinions found in wiki projects and something I would encourage in others) but Commons is made up of real people. Some can call it censoring, some netiquette but names cannot change what this proposal really is: a logical, sensible extension of the Wikimedia non-personal attack general policy. --Piolinfax (Tell me) 22:32, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support As others have said, ample venues for the expression of opinions exist outside of Commons. Commons is not a forum for political arguments. I would remove words that refer to the intent of the user:
  • anything apparently created and/or posted for the purpose of vandalism or attack[s] (including attacks against individuals, groups, nationalities and states)
  • Postings which are intended to [that] disrupt the operation of Commons or which deliberately aim to provoke other users
I don't think the struck words are helpful and they may lead to arguments about the author's intent, rather than the content itself. Walter Siegmund (talk) 03:10, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
This proposal introduces a ban on "polemics". Would it gain consensus and be passed, debates would erupt on what constitutes a polemic. That isn't helpful. --Swift (talk) 06:53, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose This is just one more rule to provide "us" with a tool (weapon?) to try and solve a problem by suppressing it. It will of course not solve the problem of conflict between users. If you did somehow managed to suppress all overt political expression, political allegances, and political views here, it would just mean that people would look for more subtle hints as to whether a person was on this side or that side of a fence. Probably resulting in wider conflicts as people mis-read signals. If a person is particularly biased or has particular views let them say - "This is me, this is what I think" on their user page. I look at a persons user page to find out more about them, if it immediately shows me that the person isn't someone I would want to deal with in real life it has served a useful purpose. Leave the content of peoples userpages and talk pages alone, and get on with what commons is actually about. --Tony Wills (talk) 10:34, 22 January 2009 (UTC)
  • strong Symbol support vote.svg Support - we don't need people who don't understand, that Wikimedia-Project are not hosts for Websites or Blogs. We don't have to be a platform for spreading hate. Marcus Cyron (talk) 00:19, 24 January 2009 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose Per Osama´s talkpage discussion.Die4Dixie (talk) 19:25, 7 February 2009 (UTC)

More in-depth statement[edit]

  • Content that does not advance Commons' aims, including but not limited to:
  • anything apparently created and/or posted for the purpose of vandalism or attack (including attacks against individuals, groups, nationalities and states)
  • polemical statements unrelated to Commons' aims, including political and religious polemics
  • Postings which are intended to disrupt the operation of Commons, or which deliberately aim to provoke other users
  • advertising or excessive linking to external domains. Blatant self-promotion is prohibited, but regular Commons contributors are allowed a certain amount of leeway and discreet links to relevant web pages elsewhere are normally permitted.

First point: I already don't like the does not advance Commons' aims thing. There are so many things that don't advance Commons' aims. If I upload a photo of myself, does that advance Commons' aims? If you try to find farfetched arguments you could say, that a photo would help to identify me, if we ever had a Commons user meetup and I would attend. But I saw users uploading photos of their cat for use on the user page. I think we won't find any argument how this advances Commons' aim. So it's not true, that content that does not advance Commons' aims is unwanted on user pages in absolute terms. We should rather say content that clearly causes damage to Commons' aims. Or even better: We just state the unwanted things without reference to Commons' aims.

Second point: apparently created for the purpose of vandalism or attack. Vandalism should be clear enough. But attack should be made more clear. What is an attack? Is No Israel an attack? No, it is not. An attack is an action or a statement that is intended to directly and negatively change the state of the attacked entity. And attack has the notion of aggression or unfairness (If I file a case against a country to the International Court of Justice cause of alleged human rights violations and I have evidence for that, this is not regarded as an attack against that country, cause it lacks the notion of aggression or unfairness although of course it is intended to change the state of the country. If I have no evidence, it is an act of aggression.). If you are not a political leader or anything like that making a statement about the preferred status of a country has no effect in any way on the actual status of that country and can thus not be regarded as an attack.

If attack is viewed in that way, I can agree to the first item in the list.

Third point: polemical statements. This is quite pointless. Polemic should not be allowed if the polemic is instrument for attacks, but attack is covered by the anterior item on the list. If it is no instrument for attacks, polemic should be allowed. So I fully disagree with the inclusion of the second item on the list.

Fourth point: intended to disrupt the operation of Commons, or which deliberately aim to provoke. That's basically a valid point. But as I already said, it's not possible to look into the thoughts of people and to judge whether it's their aim to provoke or whether people just feel provoked by neutral statements. So I am against the inclusion of deliberately aim to provoke. intended to disrupt the operation of Commons fulfills the definition of attack and is thus redundant. So I advise to remove the whole third item on the list.

Fifth point: I agree to the last item on the list. Although I think, that the wording could be improved.

So, if we changed the clauses to "attacks and advertisement are prohibited" (of course in elaborate words with some definition of the meaning of "attacks" and "advertisement"), I'd be able to support. (although that of course would destroy the basic point and premise of a 'Lex OsamaK', which led to this proposal) --Slomox (talk) 17:22, 18 January 2009 (UTC)

Is No Israel an attack?
Assuming the words "Yeah, No Israel!" mean that there should be no Israel, which would be the normal interpretation of those two words in that composition, I find it hard to read that in any way other than a call that Israel should, voluntarily or otherwise, cease to exist. That sounds like an attack to me. Regards, Ben Aveling 23:33, 7 February 2009 (UTC)
I would assume it was a command for Israel to stop some action. Funny thing about assumptions. I think your assumption lacks an assumption of good faith.Die4Dixie (talk) 19:21, 8 February 2009 (UTC)
@BenAveling: Is a deletion request for an image on Commons an attack? It's a call that the image should cease to exist on Commons. That would fulfill your definition of attack. That's why I gave a definition for 'attack' (see above): A statement is only an attack, if it is 'unfair'. If 'unfair' is too 'point of view' for you, replace it with 'unsubstantiated'. If I say "I want Israel to cease to exist, cause Jews poison wells" that's unfair, cause that's a blatant lie. Therefore it's an attack. If I say "I want Israel to cease to exist, cause the Jews drove the Palestinians out of their own homeland" that's a fair opinion (to which you can agree or disagree). The short "No Israel" does not provide any reasoning and we cannot be sure whether its reasoning is fair or unfair. But with assume good faith or put in legal terms in dubio pro reo we have to accept it as a fair opinion and that means, it's no attack. --Slomox (talk) 20:14, 8 February 2009 (UTC)


This is my counter-proposal. Improvements are still possible. It has short comments in form of refs. I am still unsure about the "or that are universally accepted to be severe offending crimes" piece. I guess there are crimes, that are - although not directed against human life - so severe, they are universally accepted to be so offending that suggesting them is universally held to be unaccepted (destroying objects of immense cultural or economic value perhaps or perhaps crimes against the dignity and honor of persons [Although I'm not sure to which degree honor and dignity of the human are protected by commonly agreed upon human rights. But crimes against honor and dignity are attacks anyway, and so are already covered]). But I couldn't produce any good example. So, perhaps this passage should be removed, if nobody else is able to produce an example. --Slomox (talk) 22:04, 19 January 2009 (UTC)

Non-allowable user page/gallery/category content[edit]

Non-allowable content includes:

  • Excluded educational content
  • Private image or other file collections of no wider educational value
  • Content that is in no way related to Commons and Commons' aims, if it exceeds a reasonable size of some lines or some paragraphs[1].
  • Advertising for products or opinions not related to Commons and Commons' aims, if it exceeds a reasonable size of a sentence or two[1] or if it is the sole purpose of the page or the user account. This also includes linking to external domains about products or opinions not related to Commons and Commons' aims, if it exceeds a reasonable size of one or two links[1].
  • Vandalism[2] and meaningless pages[3].
  • Attacks against individual persons or users, social groups, or Commons itself[4].
  • Threads[5], requests for actions[6], statements of preference for actions[7] and expression of wishes for incidents, that could be mistaken for requests,[8] against individual persons or groups of people which contravene human rights[9] or that are universally accepted to be severe offending crimes[10]. This applies also for threads of severe crimes if they are not clearly identifiable as not being meant serious by context[11].
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Commons should not host home pages, that is not the purpose of this project. Samulili (talk) 17:28, 7 March 2009 (UTC)
  1. a b c this values should be taken with a grain of salt for committed and valuable contributors, as long as the users are not well above the values
  2. like a user page only saying "Bob stinks"
  3. like "xgf" being the only content of a page or a page with masses of wikisyntax that is completely messed up
  4. An attack is an action or a statement that is intended to directly and negatively affect the state of the attacked entity with a notion of aggression or unfairness.
  5. like "I kill you, John Doe"
  6. like "Somebody kill John Doe"
  7. like "I would like, if somebody killed John Doe"
  8. like "I wish, John Doe would be dead"
  9. physical inviolability etc.
  10. ...
  11. like "At night I am a outlaw. I'll blow up our school soon!" (under the assumption, that the context is believable and there are no people in the school at night [otherwise it would be a unacceptable thread against lifes])
Opinions and comments (proposal 2[edit]
  1. Well, I just want to comment out that most of what you are saying is already covered by existing policies: We already block vandals, right? I am not mistaken, we also try to clear out issues arising between users. Imo, it is not because one problematic case arise sometimes that we need a new policy leading to a more heavier procedure. All the reference to 'if it exceeds a certain ammount of lines' are problematic, some users seem to think that 'yeah, no Israel' is a problematic statement. How are we going to define that? Adding more text to a statemennt to clear an ambuiguity would make it unacceptable? I just feel we are wasting time here. We can't definitely claim 'Commons is not censored' in one way and ask users to censor their sole user comments the other way. Esby (talk) 22:45, 19 January 2009 (UTC)
I adopted vandalism cause it was in the first proposal. If you think its redundant, let's remove it.
About censorship: It's no censorship. There is no perfect world. There is no perfect freedom of speech. Every right has its limits.
some users seem to think that 'yeah, no Israel' is a problematic statement. My proposal does not outrule that. It's inherently offensive to Israelis, obviously, but it is a fair opinion. You worry about 'Yeah, no Israel' being too short to be covered by 'if it exceeds a certain amount of lines'. Please let me state, that there are no length limits for attacks or crime support. 'Burn Bush' would not be okay, even if it is only two words. Please, read careful. If we don't carefully read our respective comments or proposals, this is all pointless. Policy making is about considering and reflecting.
Of course we could do without additional rules. There was once a time when nobody had to care about rigid rules, tedious laws, bland policies, confining provisions and incomprehensible orders. That time was called the stone age.
Clear rules allow for clear decisions. Unclear rules lead to arbitrariness. --Slomox (talk) 03:21, 20 January 2009 (UTC)
So Commons is at 'Stone age', thanks for this very instructing analogy. We don't need more idiotic bureaucracy and rules when they are not needed. It's not about the lenght I worry, it's about the fact you can interpretate it as you wish, leading to arbitrariness, arbitrariness does not come from rules, it comes from wrong and abusive interpretation and will be possible what ever are the rules. What is the rationale for a limited text? Space? Aren't we the first to say that space does not matter especially when we host gigabytes of images? You want user profile written in SMS style? Sorry, but when a proposal is wrong at its very basis I can't agree with it. I invitate you to meditate on the captions of this image File:Annie IP's serious jokes Nr1.png, Esby (talk) 08:51, 20 January 2009 (UTC) PS: You can change your user page as much you you wish, this is usually the first step to be ignored.
I don´t believe that there is is any policy here that says a user does not have the right to never be offended. Look at something else if it gives you this much grief. I interpret the ¨YEAH, NO ISRAEL¨ to be a command for Israel to stop doing what ever it is it is doing. Perhaps the offended should assume good faith. My userbox reflects the right of return, nothing sinister about that and with that return a fully enfranchised Palestinian people. Democracy shouldn´t be offensive to anyone, but if it is, look at something else. I find lolicon offensive, so I find someother part of the projects to look at and don´t look for it. The wiki´s would be a better place if everyone could put their big girl pants on.Die4Dixie (talk) 17:02, 8 February 2009 (UTC)

A majority of editors have supported the proposal but there is insufficient consensus to implement it. I think we have to stick with current policies. --MichaelMaggs (talk) 17:19, 7 March 2009 (UTC)