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RfA just gets worse, and worse, and worse...

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By Kudpung

The Admin Ship: a corollary

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Dry dock - business continues on deck

A series about adminship and its sysop election process is going to generate a lot of comment. Moreover, with the close of one the most unpleasant Requests fir Adminship in history taking place just after the last issue was published, I am rounding off the series in my last month in office at The Signpost with an addendum.

While the Admin Ship now sits in dry dock awaiting a possible - but only 'possible - refit, business continues on deck as usual for bids for the mop. 'As usual' in the sense of its traditional nastiness, personal attacks on the candidate and each other, incendiary pile-on oppose voting, and continuing to be the one place on Wikipedia where oddly, the Fourth Pillar is allowed to be regularly wrested from its plinth with impunity.

Fallen pillar

Like many of the votes at RfA, some of the comments from the keyboards of The Signpost's readers appear to come from Wikipedia users who do not really understand what adminship is and what it is like to go through 7 days of terror and torment to get it. Apart from a couple of commiserations, the talk page of a failed candidate is normally left without comment. The JBH talk page however received morte attention attention than many with the pile on of congratulations for a successful run for the mop, including people tripping over each other to apologise for opposing!

"Sorry Jb... RfA's shouldn't be like this, but unfortunately this one has become a melting pot of vitriol from some and, with due respect, significantly valid opposes from others ... Sorry you've had to go through with this. – Lourdes

"That thing was a normal RfA that became a train wreck which was under determined assault by a few drahmaz-lovers with grudges who were echoed by a few others who picked up on some (content! temperament!) memes. One picked a fight with you years ago (and picked fights with many before, during, and after this RfA), and claimed you were mean to them, and most of those complaining about content obviously didn't read what you have written. If the little gang that went after me like this in 2007 had been slightly larger they might have sunk mine, too. I value quality over quantity in content. Your work is good, and it would be better for Wikipedia to have you in the admin corps than not. " – Athaenara

"What gets me though are all of the people who somehow think I it is OK for a long term respected editor to make filthy insinuations about me and, instead of calling him on it, decide I 'should just ignore it'. Somehow so many of these people expect me to always be kind and even tempered but it is OK for them to chastise me for stamping out a false accusation of antisemitism from one of their number. " – Jbh

"Hi JBH. As someone who went through a bitter and very stressful RfA I completely understand your feelings and I don't blame you. If mine had lasted another day I doubt I'd have passed and I had privately resolved that I would not go through it again. And yes, the pain is real. [...] my confidence in RfA as an effective and adequate instrument for replenishing the ranks of administrators has been in decline for a while. – Ad Orientem

"I too went through a stressful RFA, [...] it's an unfortunate reality that even a tangential involvement in ARBIPA topics can cause mud being slung your way: I note that three of the eight participants in this mess who are still unblocked have appeared in the "oppose" column, two of whom are !voting at RFA for the first time: a battlegroundish tendency that was unfortunately common at my RFA, too. While there's a number of people I respect in the "oppose" column, there are at least a few others whose presence suggests you're doing something right." – Vanamonde

"The idea that candidates should not respond and if they do, and this is even on the RfA advice page, they will get 'penalized' by the community creates a period of vulnerability. I could have dealt with the 'Collect issue' by addressing the off-site stuff and nipped it in the bud by simply responding to Absolute OPPOSE by saying I did not challenge your oppose here or off-site - this is what I said and, if needed, brought the matter at ANI. Doing that would have sunk my RfA. So that depends on someone else stepping up but, again, that is not the culture of RfA." – Jbh

"This stinks. I have been an admin for 12 years and I haven't seen anything like this. I don't see how anyone can think that you would be dangerous with the mop. That, in a nutshell is the only criteria as far as I am concerned." -- rogerd

Many RfA are not a fair process. (See also "Rebuttals" below.) The community is working to make the process as fair as possible, but there are no guarantees. Some candidates with tens of thousands of edits fail as a result of concern expressed about isolated minor issues, or pile-on opposition following deliberate improper !votes or inappropriate !votes made in good faith. – From Advice for RfA candidates

  • 2,191 adminstrators have been created
  • There are currently 1,211 administrators
  • There have only ever been 17 'crat chats (for RfA)
  • There are 980 former administrator accounts
  • 51 admins have been dysyoped for cause of whom:
  • 21 are blocked and/or banned
  • A further (approx.) 28 resigned due to or during a related discussion or arbitration case
  • 12 are confirmed as having passed away
  • 30 are still active editors
In this issue
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