Talk:Task force/Living People/Drafting pages/Recommendations to the Board of Trustees/Findings outline
|Thread title||Replies||Last modified|
|Resources and development for BLPs||2||18:16, 27 February 2010|
|Is this to WP-centric?||2||14:47, 25 February 2010|
|Verifiability is a core principle||0||01:05, 22 February 2010|
|Ethical responsibility||2||12:18, 20 February 2010|
|Some Administrative Requirements||3||21:19, 19 February 2010|
|Throwing together an outline||0||06:10, 18 February 2010|
|Sorting ideas||5||23:02, 13 February 2010|
This is about the second point here. I think it's an important recommendation to make and as noted, we need to be more specific about it. Software development and technical enhancements whose end-goal is to improve the quality of our content, anything that can improve monitoring, allow easier and more efficient reviewing, collaboration, and improve our protection systems for more flexibility in its use, etc, can help on the BLP issue. I think for example, that watchlists and recent changes are completely outdated (not efficient and usable enough) as monitoring/reviewing tools for projects with more than a few hundreds of pages. Various ways have been proposed to improve the situation, several projects have made requests for specific implementation, but little has been achieved. There are plenty of enhancement requests in those lines at bugzilla - but they're not implemented or even considered because we don't have enough developers. In general, I think the foundation needs to invest much more (in resources and staff) in development and response to enhancement requests, and those which could help on the BLP issue in particular
I agree. As a recent example, I know that recently there was (kinda) new type of log that sometimes gets BLP violations in it and did not have a way to be suppressed items in the log to remove problem LP content. The developers are aware of the concern but it had not moved to the top of anyone's to do list yet. When new items of concern are identified it would be great if there was adequate staff to get them fixed with in a day or two at the longest. I know that they are working on loads of important stuff and need to prioritize there work, but it would be great if we did not have these items stall after they are brought to the attention of staff.
Some projects have original reporting policies, such as Wikiversity and Wikinews. In the case of the latter you are going to potentially face libel threats.
A poorly worded policy could be used as a stick to beat the Foundation where they questioned the credibility of reporting giving rise to accusations of libel.
Verifiability is a core principle but it shows differently depending on the mission and scope of wiki/project. For content that is original, there is the expectation that the content can be fact checked for accuracy by a third party. The core content must be accompanied by additional information to backup the accuracy of the content. For example, an image needs to have a descriptive summary that makes it possible to confirm that the material is true depiction of the content. An original manuscript discussing scholarly research needs to follow the establish practices of the particular discipline. Depending on the subject matter there may be very high standards for discussing data collection for the sake of duplicating or verifying the work.
Verifiability is a very powerful tool to either consolidate an article or blank it.
Had i been me i would have applied a 3 states handling of the information based on its verifiability.
- Verified information made into the Article
- Probably true information are put in quarantine currently Article Talk page awaiting sources
- craps, unverifiable, Original research and the like that have nothing to do at all in Wikipedia
What i'm awaiting is a functionality button that once you click on it will displays the links to additional resources to improve the article like reviews or interviews and facts that need sourcing in order to added within the article. Until then quarantining information would be like gambling as you hope that someone who have the needed sources get a look at the talk page.
Superbass said this:
"As I'm not yet sure where to discuss those items, I place my statement here. Anyone may move it to the discussion-page or to any other place, where we can continue the discussion. My point: The issue is more complex than "Correctness" alone will help us (if I understand the term in the sense of well cited, verifiable Information). Ethical responsibility also needs a weighed balance between public/encyclopaedic interests and privacy issues. At least that's what many conflicts on de:wp concerning living people are about. Secondly a weighed balance is needed between common biographical information and Critics' statements about a living person (e.g. two sentences about live and work of a person vs. ten sentences about scandals and affairs).--Superbass 19:28, 18 February 2010 (UTC)"
I'll respond in my next post.
That is indeed true. I stole a bit from m:BLP to rewrite that section. It now reads "Not only do the Wikimedia projects have a legal responsibility to avoid hosting libelous content, they also have an ethical responsibility to the subjects of their articles. Editors must take great care to assure accuracy when writing about living people due to the real-world impact that these works may have. Projects are also encouraged to put into place local standards paying special attention to the principles of neutrality and verifiability of facts when writing about living people." What do you think?
NW and Superbass, I agree that the ethical obligation to present a neutral content needs to be highlighted in our recommendations. Problems commonly occur because of the approach that contributors use when drafting the content. I think that we can identify some of these areas of concern specific to the different project (wikiquote, commons, wikinews, wikipedia,....) and make recommendations about how to avoid the problems. Obviously the list would not be complete and would need to be tweaked for each individual language wiki, but I think there are common areas of concern that can be addressed.
I'll find and add some specific examples of the common problems that I think we can address.
The following administrative measures adresses aspects of handling requests by people who have objections concerning an article on a living person. Where en.wikipedia an de.wikipedia should not need any change, smaller projects, as wikiquote or wikiversity, especially in languages which do not have too many contributors might need changing.
- All Projects have to specify a reliable direct contact-address (e-mail) to people who know the project and who can quickly make necessary changes in articles.
- At en.wikipedia or de.wikipedia, the OTRS-System is doing this. Smaller projects however, often do not have a Queing system or even a mailing list that is reguarily taken care of. Here, a cooperation with an apropriate OTRS-System should be made. For example, de.wikiquote offers a mailing-Adresse of the de.wikipedia-otrs. At de:q:Wikiquote:Support-Team, there is a list of active wikiquote-administrators, which can be contacted, if anything needs to be done by an administrator. The members of the support-team know this page and use it, if they need support by an admin. For very small projects, an mailing list for stewards or interwiki-admins could be created, too.
- On each page that might contain information on living people, there must be a link to a page which gives instructions, how tomake request for removal of information that might be violationg the BLP-Policy
- This could be [Project]:About, but it might be sensible to require a special template for articles on living persons that links directly to such an explanatory page. At this page, information should be given about an OTRS system or similar mean of direct contact and about the foundation as responsible maintainer.
- It might be worthwhile considering to create a new Ombudsperson for privacy / BLP-Problems that reports directly to the foundation (board or vp). This person - or commission - will take action, if complaints about the handling of BLP-issues in local projects should arise. This position could also be held by a board-member. Moreover, this position could also be responsible for receiving complaints about oversights that were denied (but this might take us too far).
- Articles on Living People should be marked by template or category in order to be able to get a quick overview and in order to take measures, if necessary.
All these suggestions would define a process on every Wikimedia-Project that allows to tackle blp-problems hopefully before they might get out of hands.
In general I agree with these ideas. I think publishing addresses in templates on the article, in the side bar, and on the talk page is a good way to assist the reader or other concerned party.
For 2: I want to add that often the person reaching out for help is not going to be knowledgeable about the processes on the WMF projects and will not write to the correct place first. So it is important that all the first responders understand Living people policy and use best practices when dealing with the person requesting help. The person might go to the image deletion page, or an general notice board. Depending on the content, the discussion may not be best done in an open forum. A single point of contact would be good, but is not always going to be possible.
As an example, it is pretty common for the Oversight-l mailing lists to get requests for removal of material that does not fall under that policy or where more extensive help is needed than suppression or redaction. So these requests needs to be dealt with by someone experienced with handling sensitive content about living people. Comprehensive follow up is needed sometimes. Many of these request take back and forth discussion, and investigation in order to fully understand the issue. So, adequate time needs to be allocated for resolving these issues. It is important to recongize the amount of work effort that it takes to adequately resolve the problem.
For 3. Ombudsperson for privacy / BLP-Problems <--- I'm not clear on what the role of the Ombudsperson would be in this instance. Would they make editorial decisions based on the Foundation LP policy? I think that is not really needed if we have a well staffed and educated group of volunteers that are trained to deal with problmatic content. IMO, it would be much better to have a larger group of volunteers addressing the concerns than one person or small panel at the Foundation or Board level. Although it is good to have a staff person to contact to assist in coordinating complex issues.
I've been throwing together a basic outline of the page, but I'm not really sure how this is going to end up. I'd appreciate it if anyone with any ideas with either add it to the page or write it down here. In addition, several of the subsections I added to the page are blank and need fleshing out.
All right folks, let's start hashing out this framework for what the Board, in its capacity as hosts, can recommend site wide.
- Related to protection
- Related to images
- Related to sourcing
- Related to administrating the projects
- What do you mean by protection? Administrative page protection or protection of human dignity and personal privacy of living people?
- Where should we include the treating of persons who hava complaints about how they are described in our projects?
Should we attempt to address issues like opt-in/opt-out, or is that too specific?
In the sense of the word protection for recommendations, I mean administrative page protection.
Protection for human dignity and personal privacy, as well as having complaints I think we can work into policy, well, the first part at least. Handling complaints could go into here in the assumption of good faith encouragement idea. Thoughts?