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Wikiconference USA - May 30 to June 1, 2014 
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Vinegar Monk wrote:
New York Law School was perfectly happy to have us have a friendly space policy in place.

From the president of the NY Law School (who has given me permission to quote his letter here).

Quote:
Dear Dr. B------,

Thank you for your email. We appreciate your concern about this issue. New York Law School is committed to the principle of free and open debate and has engaged a wide variety of voices from a wide variety of perspectives in the conferences, symposia, and panels that we host for our students and our community.

The Law School's sponsorship agreement with this conference did not provide for any substantive role, whatsoever, for our institution in the management of the conference. In fact, this conference was organized by an independent organization, independent individuals, and for an independent purpose uncoordinated with the Law School or the NYLS Institute for Information Law and Policy.

Although we provided a space for the conference on our premises, we had no control or supervision in setting or implementing the decision making policies and processes regarding acceptances and rejections for participation. We also had no power over those individuals who did.

I hope this clarifies the role of our institution in this endeavor. Thank you.

Sincerely,
Anthony Crowell


On related matters, I emailed Brad about the timing of the decision to ban Kohs. He replied with some waffle about confidential information. I replied asking what on earth was confidential about it but he has not replied. Nor has Gorman posted here since Kohs pointed out that the supposed hostile tweets occurred after the decision to ban.

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 8:50 am WWW
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Peter Damian wrote:
Vinegar Monk wrote:
New York Law School was perfectly happy to have us have a friendly space policy in place.

From the president of the NY Law School (who has given me permission to quote his letter here).

Quote:
Dear Dr. B------,

Thank you for your email. We appreciate your concern about this issue. New York Law School is committed to the principle of free and open debate and has engaged a wide variety of voices from a wide variety of perspectives in the conferences, symposia, and panels that we host for our students and our community.

The Law School's sponsorship agreement with this conference did not provide for any substantive role, whatsoever, for our institution in the management of the conference. In fact, this conference was organized by an independent organization, independent individuals, and for an independent purpose uncoordinated with the Law School or the NYLS Institute for Information Law and Policy.

Although we provided a space for the conference on our premises, we had no control or supervision in setting or implementing the decision making policies and processes regarding acceptances and rejections for participation. We also had no power over those individuals who did.

I hope this clarifies the role of our institution in this endeavor. Thank you.

Sincerely,
Anthony Crowell


On related matters, I emailed Brad about the timing of the decision to ban Kohs. He replied with some waffle about confidential information. I replied asking what on earth was confidential about it but he has not replied. Nor has Gorman posted here since Kohs pointed out that the supposed hostile tweets occurred after the decision to ban.


Way to go getting this truth out there, Peter Damian. Way to go, President Crowell, for making your NYLS's position on it clear. Shame on Vinegar Monk AKA Kevin Gorman for his mealy-mouth doubletalk that NYLS in any way approved Kohser's being banned from the conference.

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 12:22 pm
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Peter Damian wrote:
On related matters, I emailed Brad about the timing of the decision to ban Kohs. He replied with some waffle about confidential information. I replied asking what on earth was confidential about it but he has not replied. Nor has Gorman posted here since Kohs pointed out that the supposed hostile tweets occurred after the decision to ban.

Meaning that Gormless was engaging in a bit of "skulldancing." Figures.


Sun Jun 08, 2014 6:19 pm
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Kevin Rutherford says:
Quote:
We had a Friendly space policy and that was invoked at the conference, which is not illegal for an organization to do, as it is their own private event. As MONGO said below, I don't have anything against you or Kohs, but I also don't find anything controversial in this whole event since it seems like people are just trying to manufacture a controversy out of something that was invoked to help make people feel more comfortable.


The Friendly Space policy wasn't invoked at the conference at all, but 18 hours before the conference began. The policy does not have remit over precognition, "crystal ball" sorts of hypotheses.

Regardless, if all it takes to discriminate against certain attendees is the voice of one or two "uncomfortable" prospective attendees, I should hope that there are enough Wikipediocracy affiliates who attend Wikimedia conferences, that we shall never see the throat-stabber* Oliver Keyes, or the woman-burner* Ryan Kaldari, gracing the floor of a Wikimedia conference ever again.

I'll also note that someone at the WikiConference USA must have been made "uncomfortable" by African-Americans, because I didn't see one of them at the conference, in a location with the "largest population of self-defined black residents of any U.S. city". It's not discrimination, folks -- it's "comfort"!



* These individuals don't themselves actually carry out throat stabbings or woman burnings, but their endorsement of such activity is "close enough" under the guidelines of the Friendly Space policy, to cause attendees "discomfort".

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 6:46 pm WWW
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thekohser wrote:
Kevin Rutherford says:
Quote:
We had a Friendly space policy and that was invoked at the conference, which is not illegal for an organization to do, as it is their own private event. As MONGO said below, I don't have anything against you or Kohs, but I also don't find anything controversial in this whole event since it seems like people are just trying to manufacture a controversy out of something that was invoked to help make people feel more comfortable.


The Friendly Space policy wasn't invoked at the conference at all, but 18 hours before the conference began. The policy does not have remit over precognition, "crystal ball" sorts of hypotheses.

Regardless, if all it takes to discriminate against certain attendees is the voice of one or two "uncomfortable" prospective attendees, I should hope that there are enough Wikipediocracy affiliates who attend Wikimedia conferences, that we shall never see the throat-stabber* Oliver Keyes, or the woman-burner* Ryan Kaldari, gracing the floor of a Wikimedia conference ever again.

I'll also note that someone at the WikiConference USA must have been made "uncomfortable" by African-Americans, because I didn't see one of them at the conference, in a location with the "largest population of self-defined black residents of any U.S. city". It's not discrimination, folks -- it's "comfort"!



* These individuals don't themselves actually carry out throat stabbings or woman burnings, but their endorsement of such activity is "close enough" under the guidelines of the Friendly Space policy, to cause attendees "discomfort".

I would feel very, very uncomfortable with attending any of these events if a wikipedian might be there.
Please ban everyone.

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 7:04 pm
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thekohser wrote:
It's not discrimination, folks -- it's "comfort"!


There is joke there that I refuse to make.

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 7:05 pm
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'Alf' puts it very nicely.

Quote:
I will explain why this issue is important to me. I and many other editors support Wikipedia through our hard work. We make it one of the top ten websites in the world. The WMF rides on that to collect money, which it uses not just to provide servers and software, but to form and encourage partnerships with respectable academic institutions (whatever GLAM stands for, those places). Once such activity is these conferences that they organize, held on university campuses, provided with scholarly speakers and financial support for attendees and so on. This is all good, but then they ban Kohs, who, by the way, I don't know personally, with whom I disagree on just about every position I've ever heard him express, and whose writing, both stylistically and with regard to content, bores me to tears, for some ridiculous made-up ex post facto reason which they won't explain. This kind of behavior is contrary to every established norm of respectable academia and takes all the hard work that you, I, and other serious editors here provide to the WMF as a groundwork for their efforts to become respectable, and squanders it just so some feral cliquish teenagers and their enablers can nail a handpainted "NO KOHS ALLOWED" sign to their treehouse. It's insulting and it's self-defeating on the part of the WMF. Do you see why it might matter to me regardless of my opinion of Kohs? Furthermore, once people start getting banned for secret reasons without due process and with no explanation required, it could happen to anyone. Even you or me, MONGO. I don't want to go to conferences where the organizers behave like this because it's scary. … alf laylah wa laylah (talk) 15:18, 8 June 2014 (UTC)

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 8:17 pm WWW
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thekohser wrote:
I'll also note that someone at the WikiConference USA must have been made "uncomfortable" by African-Americans, because I didn't see one of them at the conference, in a location with the "largest population of self-defined black residents of any U.S. city".

We have to be fair towards them even, if they are unfair towards us. Actually there were some African-Americans
Image

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neved wrote:
thekohser wrote:
I'll also note that someone at the WikiConference USA must have been made "uncomfortable" by African-Americans, because I didn't see one of them at the conference, in a location with the "largest population of self-defined black residents of any U.S. city".

We have to be fair towards them even, if they are unfair towards us. Actually there were some African-Americans
Image

In the group photo you can see two black people, one in the area of the sign, and another to the right near the back.

(Click on photo to enlarge)
Mind you, the Wikipedia Black People Gap is far worse than their Gender Gap.

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 11:43 pm
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Zoloft wrote:
neved wrote:
thekohser wrote:
I'll also note that someone at the WikiConference USA must have been made "uncomfortable" by African-Americans, because I didn't see one of them at the conference, in a location with the "largest population of self-defined black residents of any U.S. city".

We have to be fair towards them even, if they are unfair towards us. Actually there were some African-Americans
Image

In the group photo you can see two black people, one in the area of the sign, and another to the right near the back.

(Click on photo to enlarge)
Mind you, the Wikipedia Black People Gap is far worse than their Gender Gap.

Well, Greg said " because I didn't see one of them at the conference"... (my bolding), but most important IMO is not to talk about Wikipedians and/or the WMF feeling uncomfortable with African Americans at all. They are not feeling uncomfortable with African Americans. I am sure African-Americans are welcomed to each and every Wiki project, and if there are many more white men, editing wikipedia,it is not because somebody is feeling uncomfortable with African Americans. It is a phenomena that I cannot explain.
I mean there are lot's of things that are very wrong and very unfair on Wikipedia. let's talk about those things and try to be fair.

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Sun Jun 08, 2014 11:58 pm
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Mon Jun 09, 2014 12:42 am
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By the way, when I count heads in that group photo, I only count 87 people. Perhaps 125 total people were involved with this conference in some way or another, but I think the number of people actively involved was a little less than that.


Mon Jun 09, 2014 1:17 am
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Cla68 wrote:
By the way, when I count heads in that group photo, I only count 87 people. Perhaps 125 total people were involved with this conference in some way or another, but I think the number of people actively involved was a little less than that.


Maybe the others were turned away at the door? I understand this was a rather exclusive event.


Mon Jun 09, 2014 1:54 am
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Cla68 wrote:
By the way, when I count heads in that group photo, I only count 87 people. Perhaps 125 total people were involved with this conference in some way or another, but I think the number of people actively involved was a little less than that.

You can't just go by heads. Sockpuppets are worn on the hands.

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I suspect there are a lot of attendees that don't like their pictures being taken.

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 2:09 am
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Ktr101 wrote:
[...]Yes, I bungled up a discussion with a friend, but she is on record as saying that the entire environment in which it occurred was not conducive to good journalism.[...]


Oh, so a nerd conference is not conducive to good journalism? Good journalism thrives during wars, terrorism, and so on, yet there is apparently a journalism distortion field surrounding Wikipedian events. :bored:

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 2:13 am
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Quote:
Furthermore, I know exactly why Kohs was banned, and most of the discussion here does not even touch on it. I have hinted at it above because I respect him as a person and will not disclose publicly why, but to suggest that the organizers of this conference are people who had it out to get him is not true, as there were plenty of reasons to ban him. I will let the organizers of the conference state here if they want to why that is the case, but I can attest as someone who went there and knows everyone who planned the event, there was nothing to hide because this was open to everyone. As the keynote speaker said, if you explicitly include everyone, then you are implicitly excluding others. Kevin Rutherford (talk) 02:01, 9 June 2014 (UTC)


What is going on here?

[edit] If there was some reason that has not yet been publicly stated, it is presumably so disturbing that the organisers do not want to make some official statement. But in that case, if so bad, how is it that young Kevin knows? Did they reveal this to everyone at the conference? I noted that Gorman above makes the same hint. See below.

Vinegar Monk wrote:
There were legitimate reasons to exclude Kohs in that it was established before the conference that his actions were likely to disrupt the conference. I'm not going to get in to the reasons that don't directly involve me (and I lol at the reasons involving me because I am used to e-trolls,) but if nothing else, under WMNYC's written friendly space policy, Kohs calling me various nasty names on Twitter during the event would've been sufficient grounds to exclude him had they made me uncomfortable (and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.)


What is it that Kevin and Kevin love to hint about, but aren't actually revealing?

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:04 am WWW
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Peter Damian wrote:
Quote:
Furthermore, I know exactly why Kohs was banned, and most of the discussion here does not even touch on it. I have hinted at it above because I respect him as a person and will not disclose publicly why, but to suggest that the organizers of this conference are people who had it out to get him is not true, as there were plenty of reasons to ban him. I will let the organizers of the conference state here if they want to why that is the case, but I can attest as someone who went there and knows everyone who planned the event, there was nothing to hide because this was open to everyone. As the keynote speaker said, if you explicitly include everyone, then you are implicitly excluding others. Kevin Rutherford (talk) 02:01, 9 June 2014 (UTC)


What is going on here?


Does this 23 years old young man looks to you like he knows what he's talking about? Just asking...

Image

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:38 am
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neved wrote:
Does this 23 years old young man look to you like he knows what he's talking about?


That is a comment about physical appearance. The 'friendly space' policy says

Quote:
Harassment includes, but shall not be limited to, offensive verbal comments related to gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, physical appearance, body size,
race, ethnicity, political affiliation, or religion.

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Let me see if I can pop this bubble. A couple of whiny asses made a point of telling the organizers that if Gregory Kohs attended, they wouldn't. They used language that suggested they would feel 'unsafe' with him around, which is risible. Kohs is less dangerous than a mouse. You can catch hantavirus (T-H-L) from a mouse. From Kohs you can only catch ideas.

The 'Friendly Space' crapola was then generated after-the-fact, and Kohs was told he wasn't welcome.

Any Wikiconference organizer is welcome to post here or on the en-wikipedia-l mailing list and contradict me, but they'd better have a different story they can tell me, not some waffle about how they can't.

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:46 am
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Vinegar Monk wrote:
Quote:
Un-American jerkwad, in this country we let people participate and speak even if they are unpopular. And your Wikiconference USA host New York Law School said the same thing.

There were legitimate reasons to exclude Kohs in that it was established before the conference that his actions were likely to disrupt the conference. I'm not going to get in to the reasons that don't directly involve me (and I lol at the reasons involving me because I am used to e-trolls,) but if nothing else, under WMNYC's written friendly space policy, Kohs calling me various nasty names on Twitter during the event would've been sufficient grounds to exclude him had they made me uncomfortable (and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.) Most WM affiliate safe space policies are based on adaptations of the Ada Iniatives model policy, and are designed to promote an environment of open discussion that's basically a 180 turn from how on-wiki discussions normally work. If you watch Sumana's keynote (writeup in the upcoming signpost, video and transcript already available,) you may have a better understanding of why WM affiliates to tend to use stronger in-person friendly space policies than any of our line sites do.

You know what the weirdest thing about the entire conference was? New York Brad, despite having an ultra-dry personality on-wiki, is funny as hell in real life.


I am not sure I understand. Has Greg ever called you "various nasty names on Twitter" already? If so could you please provide the links? Thanks.

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:48 am
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Zoloft wrote:
Let me see if I can pop this bubble. A couple of whiny asses made a point of telling the organizers that if Gregory Kohs attended, they wouldn't. They used language that suggested they would feel 'unsafe' with him around, which is risible. Kohs is less dangerous than a mouse. You can catch hantavirus (T-H-L) from a mouse. From Kohs you can only catch ideas.

The 'Friendly Space' crapola was then generated after-the-fact, and Kohs was told he wasn't welcome.

Any Wikiconference organizer is welcome to post here or on the en-wikipedia-l mailing list and contradict me, but they'd better have a different story they can tell me, not some waffle about how they can't.

Right but I would like the organisers to confirm why, rather than maintain the current radio silence. Radio silence always makes something appear worse than it is, and it is unfair to Greg to have these people make this innuendo.

Brad, who I have been trying to get the truth out of, will know what I am talking about. Brad, please make a fucking statement, or get someone to make a fucking statement. Or tell the two Kevins to shut the fuck up. Sorry for swearing, I rarely use such language.

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:48 am WWW
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Peter Damian wrote:
neved wrote:
Does this 23 years old young man look to you like he knows what he's talking about?


That is a comment about physical appearance. The 'friendly space' policy says

Quote:
Harassment includes, but shall not be limited to, offensive verbal comments related to gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, physical appearance, body size,
race, ethnicity, political affiliation, or religion.

No, it is not about physical appearance at all. There's nothing wrong with his appearance, He's a nice looking young man. I meant that he's too young and as many man of his age could be too opinionated to know what he's talking about.

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Last edited by neved on Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:52 am, edited 1 time in total.



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Because if we don't find out, we'll ask journalists to find out, and we'll poke around in odd corners, and look in all sorts of itchy places for answers, because...
Attachment:
thelessyouknow.png


You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:50 am
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neved wrote:
[To Kevin G] I am not sure I understand. Has Greg ever called you "various nasty names on Twitter" already? If so could you please provide the links? Thanks.


The tweets Kevin was referring to were after the ban, not before, and were pretty mild. Read Kevin's post. He is claiming something else happened, that has not been made public, which resulted in the ban.

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Peter Damian wrote:
Quote:
Furthermore, I know exactly why Kohs was banned, and most of the discussion here does not even touch on it. I have hinted at it above because I respect him as a person and will not disclose publicly why, but to suggest that the organizers of this conference are people who had it out to get him is not true, as there were plenty of reasons to ban him. I will let the organizers of the conference state here if they want to why that is the case, but I can attest as someone who went there and knows everyone who planned the event, there was nothing to hide because this was open to everyone. As the keynote speaker said, if you explicitly include everyone, then you are implicitly excluding others. Kevin Rutherford (talk) 02:01, 9 June 2014 (UTC)


What is going on here?

[edit] If there was some reason that has not yet been publicly stated, it is presumably so disturbing that the organisers do not want to make some official statement. But in that case, if so bad, how is it that young Kevin knows? Did they reveal this to everyone at the conference? I noted that Gorman above makes the same hint. See below.

Vinegar Monk wrote:
There were legitimate reasons to exclude Kohs in that it was established before the conference that his actions were likely to disrupt the conference. I'm not going to get in to the reasons that don't directly involve me (and I lol at the reasons involving me because I am used to e-trolls,) but if nothing else, under WMNYC's written friendly space policy, Kohs calling me various nasty names on Twitter during the event would've been sufficient grounds to exclude him had they made me uncomfortable (and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.)


What is it that Kevin and Kevin love to hint about, but aren't actually revealing?
It's quite common in cults for people who have "access" to visibly display that they have it and you don't and if you want to ever have access too you will need to keep your nose clean and follow the rules and someday you too may be chosen to have access.

Remember: in the Wikipedia community, information is a carefully controlled commodity. Those who have information do not reveal it lightly, because doing so gives up some quantum of power they hold over someone else by virtue of having information that others don't. Claiming to have knowledge is a power play, especially when combined with the refusal to share that knowledge. This is, in effect, a form of bullying.

They're never going to tell you what the reason was. They gain nothing by doing so.


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I guess the answers lie in personal motives, and the identities of the people who whined, then.

I'm sure these are uncontroversial lines of inquiry.

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Hmm, maybe they're talking about that incident a few years back when Greg wiped out an entire tribe of pygmies in the Andaman Islands... with his penis!

:o

No, wait... that was me. (Never mind.)

Anyway, how can anyone seriously entertain the notion that they're not totally making this shit up and lying out their collective asses? It's not like they don't do it all the time, and they have plenty of reason to in this case. At the same time, I certainly wouldn't want any of them coming to a conference I was attending - frankly, they all give me the willies.


Mon Jun 09, 2014 6:30 am
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Kelly Martin wrote:
Peter Damian wrote:
Quote:
Furthermore, I know exactly why Kohs was banned, and most of the discussion here does not even touch on it. I have hinted at it above because I respect him as a person and will not disclose publicly why, but to suggest that the organizers of this conference are people who had it out to get him is not true, as there were plenty of reasons to ban him. I will let the organizers of the conference state here if they want to why that is the case, but I can attest as someone who went there and knows everyone who planned the event, there was nothing to hide because this was open to everyone. As the keynote speaker said, if you explicitly include everyone, then you are implicitly excluding others. Kevin Rutherford (talk) 02:01, 9 June 2014 (UTC)


What is going on here?

[edit] If there was some reason that has not yet been publicly stated, it is presumably so disturbing that the organisers do not want to make some official statement. But in that case, if so bad, how is it that young Kevin knows? Did they reveal this to everyone at the conference? I noted that Gorman above makes the same hint. See below.

Vinegar Monk wrote:
There were legitimate reasons to exclude Kohs in that it was established before the conference that his actions were likely to disrupt the conference. I'm not going to get in to the reasons that don't directly involve me (and I lol at the reasons involving me because I am used to e-trolls,) but if nothing else, under WMNYC's written friendly space policy, Kohs calling me various nasty names on Twitter during the event would've been sufficient grounds to exclude him had they made me uncomfortable (and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.)


What is it that Kevin and Kevin love to hint about, but aren't actually revealing?
It's quite common in cults for people who have "access" to visibly display that they have it and you don't and if you want to ever have access too you will need to keep your nose clean and follow the rules and someday you too may be chosen to have access.

Remember: in the Wikipedia community, information is a carefully controlled commodity. Those who have information do not reveal it lightly, because doing so gives up some quantum of power they hold over someone else by virtue of having information that others don't. Claiming to have knowledge is a power play, especially when combined with the refusal to share that knowledge. This is, in effect, a form of bullying.

They're never going to tell you what the reason was. They gain nothing by doing so.

Sure they would gain something. There are quite a few people here and on wiki who are accusing them of secrecy, of cowardliness, of dishonesty and so on. If they disclose the reason it could end the accusations.

Greg, Kevin writes :
Quote:
(and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.)

Could you think about anybody you made to feel "significantly uncomfortable" or even simply uncomfortable for that matter before the ban?

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 6:41 am
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neved wrote:
Sure they would gain something. There are quite a few people here and on wiki who are accusing them of secrecy, of cowardliness, of dishonesty and so on. If they disclose the reason it could end the accusations.

They actually see those accusations as a gain in themselves, because they reinforce their cultish fortress/victim mentality for the benefit of those not yet fully indoctrinated - who might otherwise figure out that they're the ones doing the bullying. For them, it's better if these things are left to the imaginations of neophytes and new recruits. They also know there will never be a subpoena, and even if there is, they can always produce a faked e-mail or some such thing.

I'm afraid the most practical (if not best) response here is for us to simply keep referring to this incident in oblique terms as evidence that they exclude critics from their public gatherings, without actually going into much detail about it. Turnabout is fair play, so hey, yet another item for the already-lengthy list of their misdeeds and chicanery.


Mon Jun 09, 2014 7:11 am
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neved wrote:
Could you think about anybody you made to feel "significantly uncomfortable" or even simply uncomfortable for that matter before the ban?


I'm sure I scare some people in the same way that a large non-poisonous snake taken out of a glass terrarium might frighten some little elementary school girls. There's really very little risk the girls are being exposed to, yet their titillating screams and shrieks might draw attention; but in the end, they're simply missing out on an opportunity to learn about a docile and interesting creature.

Hosting a conference that caters to the wails of little school girls and cancels the visit by the reptile specialist is no way to advance education. Anyone who supports that process, even through their silent acquiescence, is also giving in to the ignorant panic of the school girls.

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:25 am WWW
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thekohser wrote:
I'm sure I scare some people in the same way that a large non-poisonous snake taken out of a glass terrarium might frighten some little elementary school girls. There's really very little risk the girls are being exposed to, yet their titillating screams and shrieks might draw attention; but in the end, they're simply missing out on an opportunity to learn about a docile and interesting creature.


The Serpent, The Old Serpent, The Awful Monster...

Just sayin'...

http://lds.about.com/od/basicsgospelpri ... _devil.htm

RfB


Mon Jun 09, 2014 11:12 am
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Randy from Boise wrote:
thekohser wrote:
I'm sure I scare some people in the same way that a large non-poisonous snake taken out of a glass terrarium might frighten some little elementary school girls. There's really very little risk the girls are being exposed to, yet their titillating screams and shrieks might draw attention; but in the end, they're simply missing out on an opportunity to learn about a docile and interesting creature.


The Serpent, The Old Serpent, The Awful Monster...

He insists on giving Wikipedians the knowledge of good and evil, are you even surprised that they won't let him into the Garden?

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 11:36 am WWW
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Peter Damian wrote:
Zoloft wrote:
Let me see if I can pop this bubble. A couple of whiny asses made a point of telling the organizers that if Gregory Kohs attended, they wouldn't. They used language that suggested they would feel 'unsafe' with him around, which is risible. Kohs is less dangerous than a mouse. You can catch hantavirus (T-H-L) from a mouse. From Kohs you can only catch ideas.

The 'Friendly Space' crapola was then generated after-the-fact, and Kohs was told he wasn't welcome.

Any Wikiconference organizer is welcome to post here or on the en-wikipedia-l mailing list and contradict me, but they'd better have a different story they can tell me, not some waffle about how they can't.

Right but I would like the organisers to confirm why, rather than maintain the current radio silence. Radio silence always makes something appear worse than it is, and it is unfair to Greg to have these people make this innuendo.

Brad, who I have been trying to get the truth out of, will know what I am talking about. Brad, please make a fucking statement, or get someone to make a fucking statement. Or tell the two Kevins to shut the fuck up. Sorry for swearing, I rarely use such language.


Exactly. Brad should know a lot better than to cry wolf. Just ask Alison what can happen when one group spends their entire time making crap up and then finding out there's a real problem.

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Mon Jun 09, 2014 11:58 am
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Apropos of nothing, I felt Youtube might help us better visualize the disconnect here between how Wikipedians perceive themselves and reality.

The (probable) reality of a typical WikiConference USA session if Greg Kohs had actually attended:
video: show


The fever-dream Wikipedian paranoid fantasy of a typical WikiConference USA session, if critics had been allowed to attend in contravention of Wikimedia's so-called "Friendly Spaces" policy:
video: show


Mon Jun 09, 2014 8:07 pm
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Peter Damian wrote:
Quote:
Furthermore, I know exactly why Kohs was banned, and most of the discussion here does not even touch on it. I have hinted at it above because I respect him as a person and will not disclose publicly why, but to suggest that the organizers of this conference are people who had it out to get him is not true, as there were plenty of reasons to ban him. I will let the organizers of the conference state here if they want to why that is the case, but I can attest as someone who went there and knows everyone who planned the event, there was nothing to hide because this was open to everyone. As the keynote speaker said, if you explicitly include everyone, then you are implicitly excluding others. Kevin Rutherford (talk) 02:01, 9 June 2014 (UTC)


What is going on here?

[edit] If there was some reason that has not yet been publicly stated, it is presumably so disturbing that the organisers do not want to make some official statement. But in that case, if so bad, how is it that young Kevin knows? Did they reveal this to everyone at the conference? I noted that Gorman above makes the same hint. See below.

Vinegar Monk wrote:
There were legitimate reasons to exclude Kohs in that it was established before the conference that his actions were likely to disrupt the conference. I'm not going to get in to the reasons that don't directly involve me (and I lol at the reasons involving me because I am used to e-trolls,) but if nothing else, under WMNYC's written friendly space policy, Kohs calling me various nasty names on Twitter during the event would've been sufficient grounds to exclude him had they made me uncomfortable (and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.)


What is it that Kevin and Kevin love to hint about, but aren't actually revealing?


In the long run Kevin and Kevin, your 2014 conference is likely to be more remembered for you banning a Wikipedia critic and refusing to say why, than it is for anything that was actually said or done at the conference sessions. Your trying to censor mention of it from Wikipedia helps even more.


Mon Jun 09, 2014 10:34 pm
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neved wrote:
Peter Damian wrote:
neved wrote:
Does this 23 years old young man look to you like he knows what he's talking about?


That is a comment about physical appearance. The 'friendly space' policy says

Quote:
Harassment includes, but shall not be limited to, offensive verbal comments related to gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, physical appearance, body size,
race, ethnicity, political affiliation, or religion.

No, it is not about physical appearance at all. There's nothing wrong with his appearance, He's a nice looking young man. I meant that he's too young and as many man of his age could be too opinionated to know what he's talking about.


Cue revision of 'friendly space' policy to include 'age' in 3...2...1....


Mon Jun 09, 2014 11:45 pm
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Cla68 wrote:
Peter Damian wrote:
Quote:
Furthermore, I know exactly why Kohs was banned, and most of the discussion here does not even touch on it. I have hinted at it above because I respect him as a person and will not disclose publicly why, but to suggest that the organizers of this conference are people who had it out to get him is not true, as there were plenty of reasons to ban him. I will let the organizers of the conference state here if they want to why that is the case, but I can attest as someone who went there and knows everyone who planned the event, there was nothing to hide because this was open to everyone. As the keynote speaker said, if you explicitly include everyone, then you are implicitly excluding others. Kevin Rutherford (talk) 02:01, 9 June 2014 (UTC)


What is going on here?

[edit] If there was some reason that has not yet been publicly stated, it is presumably so disturbing that the organisers do not want to make some official statement. But in that case, if so bad, how is it that young Kevin knows? Did they reveal this to everyone at the conference? I noted that Gorman above makes the same hint. See below.

Vinegar Monk wrote:
There were legitimate reasons to exclude Kohs in that it was established before the conference that his actions were likely to disrupt the conference. I'm not going to get in to the reasons that don't directly involve me (and I lol at the reasons involving me because I am used to e-trolls,) but if nothing else, under WMNYC's written friendly space policy, Kohs calling me various nasty names on Twitter during the event would've been sufficient grounds to exclude him had they made me uncomfortable (and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.)


What is it that Kevin and Kevin love to hint about, but aren't actually revealing?


In the long run Kevin and Kevin, your 2014 conference is likely to be more remembered for you banning a Wikipedia critic and refusing to say why, than it is for anything that was actually said or done at the conference sessions. Your trying to censor mention of it from Wikipedia helps even more.

I find it pretty funny that I'm accused of disappearing when I poof for something like a day. I still won't have consistent internet access for a few days as I'm travelling: if I'm not here, it's not because I've been frightened off, it's because I have limited net access and don't consider WPO a terribly high priority to respond to. Oh well, starting to respond from the back.

It may be more remembered by *you* for that than anything else Cla, but you were both not at the conference, don't seem to give two shits about Wikipedia except to stir up drama, and tend to, er, pretty much just focus on the dramatic aspects of anything. Which is sad, because you used to both write high quality content and remember most of our sourcing rules. Besides for those unfortunate enough to get sucked in to some WPO-generated drama, I doubt anyone will even remember Kohs was disinvited a year from now, and will instead remember the lasting connections the conference facilitated. If the kerfuffle involving Kohs ends up getting significant coverage from reliable sources, I'll gladly at it to that page myself as soon as the protection fades. As it is, one offhanded sentence in a single RS pretty much indicates that no one but Wikipediocrats really care about it, and certainly falls out of the explicitly expressed scope of the list.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:02 am
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Kelly Martin wrote:
Peter Damian wrote:
Quote:
Furthermore, I know exactly why Kohs was banned, and most of the discussion here does not even touch on it. I have hinted at it above because I respect him as a person and will not disclose publicly why, but to suggest that the organizers of this conference are people who had it out to get him is not true, as there were plenty of reasons to ban him. I will let the organizers of the conference state here if they want to why that is the case, but I can attest as someone who went there and knows everyone who planned the event, there was nothing to hide because this was open to everyone. As the keynote speaker said, if you explicitly include everyone, then you are implicitly excluding others. Kevin Rutherford (talk) 02:01, 9 June 2014 (UTC)


What is going on here?

[edit] If there was some reason that has not yet been publicly stated, it is presumably so disturbing that the organisers do not want to make some official statement. But in that case, if so bad, how is it that young Kevin knows? Did they reveal this to everyone at the conference? I noted that Gorman above makes the same hint. See below.

Vinegar Monk wrote:
There were legitimate reasons to exclude Kohs in that it was established before the conference that his actions were likely to disrupt the conference. I'm not going to get in to the reasons that don't directly involve me (and I lol at the reasons involving me because I am used to e-trolls,) but if nothing else, under WMNYC's written friendly space policy, Kohs calling me various nasty names on Twitter during the event would've been sufficient grounds to exclude him had they made me uncomfortable (and plenty of his other behavior did make people significantly uncomfortable; and no, I'm not revealing what, because I don't what Kohs to know when he's actually successfully trolled someone.)


What is it that Kevin and Kevin love to hint about, but aren't actually revealing?
It's quite common in cults for people who have "access" to visibly display that they have it and you don't and if you want to ever have access too you will need to keep your nose clean and follow the rules and someday you too may be chosen to have access.

Remember: in the Wikipedia community, information is a carefully controlled commodity. Those who have information do not reveal it lightly, because doing so gives up some quantum of power they hold over someone else by virtue of having information that others don't. Claiming to have knowledge is a power play, especially when combined with the refusal to share that knowledge. This is, in effect, a form of bullying.

They're never going to tell you what the reason was. They gain nothing by doing so.

Kelly, are you actually suggesting that I've acquired secret access to mysterious information (which can be summed up "multiple conference attendees felt threatened by Greg's behavior") through avoiding drama? I'm... not exactly known for sticking to the exact letter of the rules in any situation or avoiding drama. Not disclosing the exact reasons why the decision to ban Greg is pretty much following best practices in organizing conferences, in the same way that attempted outing on-wiki is treated in approximately the same way as actual outing. Keep in mind I wasn't an organizer nor present in the session that made the decision, but not wanting to let a troll know which of his intended targets he may or may not have successfully struck is pretty standard practice to discourage future trolling.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:09 am
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Vinegar Monk wrote:
... I still won't have consistent internet access for a few days as I'm travelling: if I'm not here, it's not because I've been frightened off, it's because I have limited net access ...

Great minds think alike ... but the converse does not necessarily hold.


Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:10 am
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Peter Damian wrote:
neved wrote:
[To Kevin G] I am not sure I understand. Has Greg ever called you "various nasty names on Twitter" already? If so could you please provide the links? Thanks.


The tweets Kevin was referring to were after the ban, not before, and were pretty mild. Read Kevin's post. He is claiming something else happened, that has not been made public, which resulted in the ban.

I'm too lazy to dig up links, but Peter is correct in stating that most of them were after Kohs was disinvited - I don't recall offhand if any were before. I kind of doubt that Kohs' behavior would've been any different had that not been the case, and although I'm pretty used to Kohs (he's a bit tame in comparison to most trolls I attract to be honest,) making fun of a conference attendee for having previously suffered a concusssion isn't really an awesome way to create a welcoming environment at the conference for anyone not willing to tolerate abuse (albeit mild, compared to MRA crap,) and is certainly something that would've gotten him booted in most circumstances had he done it at the actual conference. For that matter, even if his behavior had been different if he hadn't been disinvited, I don't feel terribly awesome about having a conference atttendee who is only not mocking other conference attendees for the duration of the conference, since I imagine he would've reverted back in to Kohs pretty much as soon as he could've.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:14 am
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Zoloft wrote:
Let me see if I can pop this bubble. A couple of whiny asses made a point of telling the organizers that if Gregory Kohs attended, they wouldn't. They used language that suggested they would feel 'unsafe' with him around, which is risible. Kohs is less dangerous than a mouse. You can catch hantavirus (T-H-L) from a mouse. From Kohs you can only catch ideas.

The 'Friendly Space' crapola was then generated after-the-fact, and Kohs was told he wasn't welcome.

Any Wikiconference organizer is welcome to post here or on the en-wikipedia-l mailing list and contradict me, but they'd better have a different story they can tell me, not some waffle about how they can't.

WMNYC adopted a friendly space policy significantly before it was applied to Kohs. Also, agreed, I'm personally more afraid of mice than of Kohs. I pretty much hate mice, and would be totally up for going out to lunch with Kohs at some point.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:18 am
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Zoloft wrote:
I suspect there are a lot of attendees that don't like their pictures being taken.

The group picture ended up being taken in a rather silly spot without room for everyone. From memory, I ducked out of it myself for that reason.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:20 am
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Triptych wrote:
Peter Damian wrote:
Vinegar Monk wrote:
New York Law School was perfectly happy to have us have a friendly space policy in place.

From the president of the NY Law School (who has given me permission to quote his letter here).

Quote:
Dear Dr. B------,

Thank you for your email. We appreciate your concern about this issue. New York Law School is committed to the principle of free and open debate and has engaged a wide variety of voices from a wide variety of perspectives in the conferences, symposia, and panels that we host for our students and our community.

The Law School's sponsorship agreement with this conference did not provide for any substantive role, whatsoever, for our institution in the management of the conference. In fact, this conference was organized by an independent organization, independent individuals, and for an independent purpose uncoordinated with the Law School or the NYLS Institute for Information Law and Policy.

Although we provided a space for the conference on our premises, we had no control or supervision in setting or implementing the decision making policies and processes regarding acceptances and rejections for participation. We also had no power over those individuals who did.

I hope this clarifies the role of our institution in this endeavor. Thank you.

Sincerely,
Anthony Crowell


On related matters, I emailed Brad about the timing of the decision to ban Kohs. He replied with some waffle about confidential information. I replied asking what on earth was confidential about it but he has not replied. Nor has Gorman posted here since Kohs pointed out that the supposed hostile tweets occurred after the decision to ban.


Way to go getting this truth out there, Peter Damian. Way to go, President Crowell, for making your NYLS's position on it clear. Shame on Vinegar Monk AKA Kevin Gorman for his mealy-mouth doubletalk that NYLS in any way approved Kohser's being banned from the conference.

It was a controlled access building with security at the front who were not admitting anyone without a conference badge, and who I'm relatively certain had been told that a potential attendee who had been disinvited under the public friendly space policy might try to show up anyway. They seemed pretty happy to ensure that our friendly space policy was upheld. Honestly, I find it a bit funny that I picked a totally apparent anagram and have never hid my identity and you still feel some odd desire to make it look like I'm trying to conceal my identity in your post.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:24 am
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Vinegar Monk wrote:
making fun of a conference attendee for having previously suffered a concusssion isn't really an awesome way to create a welcoming environment at the conference for anyone not willing to tolerate abuse (albeit mild, compared to MRA crap,) and is certainly something that would've gotten him booted in most circumstances had he done it at the actual conference. For that matter, even if his behavior had been different if he hadn't been disinvited, I don't feel terribly awesome about having a conference atttendee who is only not mocking other conference attendees for the duration of the conference, since I imagine he would've reverted back in to Kohs pretty much as soon as he could've.

Please, sir, I beg you, stop slinging around the word "awesome" so much. It makes you sound like a shallow "surfer dude".

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:25 am WWW
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Vinegar Monk wrote:
Zoloft wrote:
I suspect there are a lot of attendees that don't like their pictures being taken.

The group picture ended up being taken in a rather silly spot without room for everyone. From memory, I ducked out of it myself for that reason.


I'd take a dump.. and quickly. You're so full of it, you're about to explode.

- There is enough room in that picture for twice that number of people
- That's without moving the tables

And I won't even start on what's wrong with there being more space than that elsewhere in the room.

How about you start off again, only this time do it without lying.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:26 am
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Midsize Jake wrote:
Vinegar Monk wrote:
Quote:
Has anyone here ever suggested that we should make an episode of South Park?

I'm pretty sure someone has suggested it here previously. In fact, I think you quoted the post where they did so.

You're mistaken, Mr. Gorman, and your attempts at humor and cleverness are a complete failure.

(At least the intentional ones, that is.)

Did I somehow misread his post and think it quoted my post where it didn't? If so, may I offer my most hyperbolically sincere apologies imaginable. To be perfectly clear, I was suggesting WPO would make an interesting south park episode, and that Kohs would make a pretty awesome loch ness monster. Fi' fiddy is even close enough to go well with the traditional tree fiddy.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:28 am
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thekohser wrote:
Vinegar Monk wrote:
If this ends up getting mentioned in more than an bit of O'Dwyers nonsense and an offhanded comment in the NYM, I'll be happy to add Kohs back to the list myself.

Given your continuing vendetta and insinuations about me on Twitter, do you honestly believe that you are the "impartial admin" who should be making these decisions on an article where your reputation is directly impacted?

My continuing vendetta against you? Dude, the next time you're in the bay, I'll buy you a beer to cover your amtrak cancellation fee. Also, out of curiosity, have you been away from ENWP so long that you remember that content decisions are very rarely made by impartial admins, but rather by involved editors? With the rather silly "informal RfC" Alfy started, that may not be the instant case here, but at a bare minimum, I'll certainly happily swap my votes if yuor exclusion manages to meet the inclusion standards of the list.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:31 am
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thekohser wrote:
Vinegar Monk wrote:
...those who tweet "shouldn't be tweeting with an obvious head injury" at you in the middle of a conference.

...it's hilariously creepy that you started tweeting random conference attendees demanding a $5 refund for your cancellation fee.

As for head injuries, I'm just modeling the true professionals. My unfriendly tweet about your head, Kevin, came only after you defamed me on Twitter, unprovoked.


As for tweeting "random" conference attendees asking (not demanding) for a refund of my cancellation fee, it's not "random" when I ask you (not plural "conference attendees", just you) for money IN RESPONSE TO YOU SAYING:
Quote:
Random plug - need money for a Wikimedia project? Apply! We <3 funding people, we welcome all apps...


The fact that you can't even acknowledge (or remember) how your initial tweet makes my request very much APPROPRIATE and not RANDOM, indicates to me that you may still be suffering the long-term effects of a head injury. As thick and luxurious as that 'fro of yours is, you shouldn't expect that it minimizes all damage from head trauma, no matter how long ago it happened. I would seek the aid of your primary physician, and perhaps a psychotherapist (considering this single-minded vendetta against me that you seem intent on continuing).

You may want to re-read that series of tweets, and also consult a lawyer on what constitutes defamation.

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Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:32 am
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