Monday, March 07, 2005

A Terminology of War

Last week I thought I’d enter the Wikicommunity and add what I (correctly) assumed would be a lacking but necessary voice to their article on global warming (I also updated my profile to link to LL&L).

There are a lot of fun and interesting stories that are spawning from this experience but one bears special mention: the attacks on my credibility.

For example after one of my edits, William M. Connolley—who watches the article like a hawk—visted the blog and attacked my intentions based on the March 4th post. Connolley is a fan of reverting the article (taking it back to an earlier version), undoing my work. Vsmith has accused me of “declaring war on wiki climate articles,” based off the post. Though I never used that term, it’s not an inaccurate description. I didn’t expect new ideas to be accepted and debated on these articles and unfortunately I’m right: skepticism is being met with hostility.

Thus others’ define this as a “war,” and I accept that term for two reasons. First, it takes two sides to make a peaceful exchange. If they are going to be nasty and closed-minded, then the term “discussion” is not appropriate (though I insist on taking the high ground). Second, the war anology lends itself to other useful analogies. For example, I opened a new front.

I’ve been spending time working the article and disscussion for wiki’s article called “Scientific opinion on climate change” and I’m trying to introduce a section on the politics that shape that very opinion. Again, lots of deletion and angry words.

NOTE: At the time of this writing I’ve been unable to contribute to the talk page to defend my take on the matter…something is wrong with the wiki site. Also, to view my (short lived) contributions, visit the history page and check out revisions by “Atlastawake.”

If anyone has any advice or links they could provide me to help make my cases, I’d love to see them.

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