There is an interesting (if you like that sort of thing) insight into some wiki-politics available from a recent RFA (which stands for [[Wikipedia:Requests for adminship]]. Not to be confused, obviously, with RFA which stands for [[Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests]]). Admins are the folks who do exciting things like blocking vandals (well, and other. My own log is here if you’re interested), deleting pages, and a pile of ill-defined miscellaneous tasks. Once upon a time adminship was handed out to anyone who wanted it and who wasn’t obviously mad; there is still a token pretence that adminship is “no big deal” but it isn’t true, obviously. Edging closer to the politics, there are loose groups of admins (and indeed of other editors) but lacking any interest in wiki politics I don’t know what these groupings are. Charles knows all, and indeed at one point attempted to explain it to me, but alas I failed to listen, since I didn’t care. So who gets to be an admin matters, somewhat, because… well I’m not fully sure. It affects who gets blocked, a bit, at least in extreme cases. The point is that everybody cares, though in my case not enough to bother monitoring RFA’s.
Anyway, the RFA I’m talking about is that of Flying Toaster (as far as I know FT (not to be confused with FT2 of course) is the innocent battleground on which others are playing out their humours). My witty and amusing support vote is here, which will make no sense to most people but is obvious enough to those who were intended to read it (happily enough I would have voted support anyway, not quite sure what I would have done had I felt inclined to oppose. Indulge me here a moment, because now I’ve forgotten how I ended up getting there; a moment before I’d voted for Kotra, which is unusual, as I last voted oh ages ago. I think it must have been this at Wikipedia:Administrators’ noticeboard – that would explain things neatly).
Anyway, I think I’ve at last got to my point, which is there is an interminable “discussion” about how much wiki-management should be done on and off wiki (it long ago became clear that further discussion was pointless and I stopped even attempting to follow it; but people still care). There is a wiki IRC channel (which I read once upon a time, but not for ages) where people, from what I recall, mostly chat. But maybe there are Sekret channels too. Who knows. Anyway people get upset about this, and so you end up with block-voting of the on-wiki folk against the off-wiki folk and so on. Which is what otherwise incomprehensible votes like this mean. Then you get the fanboi’s jumping on the bandwaggon and it becomes rather funny, because when it is pointed out that the “per” they have given is unintelligible, they immeadiately switch to another reason. Tex, at least, had a bizarre sort of integrity: his opposition was incoherent, and remained unapologetically so. I thought it might be fun to tweak him, so I followed up; alas he wasn’t very interesting and was unable to disguise his slavishness.
Incidentally, while I’m talking about wiki to a group of technically literate people, does anyone feel like improving [[Distributed Inter-Process Communication]].