Task force/Recommendations/Community health 2
Assertion: We need vision, direction an cooperation
Wikipedia worldwide is a Tower of Babel that is in distress right now. It desperately needs three things:
The problem that we're seeing is a lack of cooperation that is caused by a lack of vision, and thus, a lack of direction. I'll work downwards up.
Sub assertion: Lack of cooperation
This is what most contributors feel, both new contributors, and regulars.
New contributors feel either bumped down by regulations or strangled by the "pedia police". That's idiotic but it's a fact.
On the other hand, regulars (moderators) also feel hampered, either by regulations or by other regulars who distrust their judgments, as in deleting articles.
A third category of contributors feel they're not listened to. They want to encourage new contributors but they are hampered by the "police" in their efforts to make new contributors feel welcome.
Sub assertion: Lack of direction
We, as a whole, don't know how to work this Tower of Babel up. We're not sure whether it should be the bulk of all knowledge, or the bulk of all information. We are not sure about the difference between knowledge and information. As a consequence, we don't know how to direct our regulars and we don't know how to instruct and guide our new users.
Moreover, we don't know which of the rules that we impose on our users is the more important. As a result, there's anomaly.
Say, some user wants to tell us all about a new type of automobile. We let him, because there's no rule to stop him. But if someone wants to tell us all about the next president of Bolivia or his opponent, we might encounter all kinds of problems and even get into such a brawl, that some users leave us that we never would let go if we had a chance.
Someone wants to teach us about the Flemish-Wallonian language problem. The resulting conflict cannot be solved, because only long-lasting and serious discussion can solve that dispute. We simply don't have the apparatus for that.
More and more, our users feel a discomfort in contributing, discussing about their work, in feeling safe and confident about what they have contributed.
Sub assertion: Conclusion
Without a vision we cannot solve the dissipation of users throughout Wikipedia. We need to know the reasons, but we need a vision in the first place.
Without a vision, we cannot direct our users.
Without direction, our users cannot create what we need in the first place: a working stage that is productive and comfortable for other users.
What we need is this place that is comfortable for all users, where it is safe to contribute and discuss and where they feel the freedom to build the knowledge Tower of Babel.