Wikinews:Arbitration Committee/Elections July 2008

The Arbitration Committee is community-elected group of users who can hold hearings in serious disputes that cannot otherwise be resolved by the community (through discussions or quick, generally temporary actions by administrators).

In general, ArbCom hearings are intended to be about whether core policies like NPOV and Wikiquette are followed. The members of ArbCom can decide whether or not they want to hear a particular case brought before them through Wikinews:Requests for arbitration. Be aware that arbitration duty can still be rather time-intensive in complex cases, and that you will be required to recuse yourself from cases you are involved in. Generally, all members of the Arbitration Committee are given Oversight (and some CheckUser), however if you are currently under the age of 18, you cannot receive this right (according to a resolution of the Wikimedia Foundation).

This Arbitration Committee election was held from July 19, 2008, 11:00 UTC to August 1, 2008, 20:00 UTC, and is now closed. The elections are an open process and we strive for consensus. Anyone can be nominated. The 6 candidates with the most support will be appointed to the 6 open seats on the committee left vacant due to the expiring terms of the committee members.

Nominations were accepted from June 20, 2008, 20:00 UTC to July 09, 2008, 19:59 UTC.

The Arbitration Committee members elected will tentatively serve through July 31, 2009.

Election Policies

  • You must have at least 250 edits in the Main namespace before July 1, 2008 at 00:00 (UTC) in order to vote.
  • Your first edit must have been made before June 1, 2008 at 00:00 (UTC) in order to vote.
  • All Wikimedia Foundation board members, full-time staff, and paid developers will be eligible to vote, provided they have edited a Wikimedia project before June 1, 2008 in that capacity.
  • The results will become valid once they have been confirmed by the Wikinews Arbitration Committee Election Coordinators (see below).

Wikinews Arbitration Committee Election Coordinators

The Wikinews Arbitration Committee Election Coordinators currently consists of Thunderhead, Steven Fruitsmaak and Mike Halterman.


Out of the fourteen people nominated in this election, nine made it to the final vote. Please see the nominations page for the detailed discussion.

Candidate statements

Keep it brief people!

I like how for my entire term to date we have not needed the ArbCom; I like to think that while we are still a small project this means we are a functioning project. I believe the ArbCom is a last stop in cases where that starts to break down. The primary objective of a ruling is to keep the project functioning. Secondary to that, is making rulings to restrict user activities, and such should be aimed at meeting the primary goal. I would like another term with no ArbCom cases, but if there are any I will argue in favour of what I believe to be the best interests of the project. --Brian McNeil / talk 18:51, 29 June 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I support the mission of ArbCom, as a last resort in "arbitration," otherwise, let's make sure that everyone sits down and has a nice of cup of tea before coming to see us. ;) --TUFKAAP (talk) 00:08, 30 June 2008 (UTC)[reply]

ArbCom is a, unfortunately, necessary process on-wiki. I am immensely proud to be part of a project that has only ever used ArbCom 2 or 3 times. However, I feel that it is necessary for ArbCom to exist so that there is somewhere to go when all else fails. I believe I know enough about Wikinews to serve as a member of ArbCom - and I would love to serve a term where there are no cases. I think it would show ongoing strength in our community.

As a side note, I am an administrator, accredited reporter, and I am identified to the Foundation. --Skenmy(tcw) 09:24, 30 June 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I am surprised and honored by the nomination to be considered to serve on the Arbitration Committee. I will do my best to represent the values of Wikinews, and to sort through issues fairly and appropriately in a manner consistent with the policies of this project and to hopefully keep us towards productive and harmonious article-writing/contributing. Cirt (talk) 20:55, 30 June 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Thankfully, ArbCom has been inactive for a long time and I hope that continues. It is however an important committee that we must have at the ready, in case an unforeseen conflict arises. I have on occasion interjected myself in conflict resolution (that never went to ArbCom), and I think I was able to do so without taking sides and viewing the conflict objectively. --SVTCobra 23:31, 30 June 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Historically, it appears that ArbCom on Wikinews does almost nothing - but that little bit of something that it does is a very important one. I'm one of the Neville Chamberlains of the world, and I want everyone to just get along, but I understand that every so often disputes arise that can only be solved by someone uninvolved stepping in and wielding the giant ClueBat. If you look at my history here, and on en.wp (as w:User:ConMan), you will see that I have never seriously lost my cool, and have on several occasions been the one trying to be the voice of reason, despite being involved in one of the most quietly controversial articles there - w:0.999.... Chris Mann (Say hi!|Stalk me!) 01:56, 1 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I have served on Arbcom since January 2007. Without bragging, at the moment on Wikinews I am a accredited contributor, Administrator, Arbitrator, Checkuser, Oversight and Bureaucrat, and would like to run for a new term, as still check in with Wikinews most days, and even through I am not actively editing as I once was, could bring a independent perspective to cases. As Wikinews grows, the attention it receives from people with strong ethno- political and religious ideologies will explode, it is has happened in the past, and could happen again, and increasing our output of news - quality news can be and is stifled due to attempted advocacy, propaganda or rewriting of news due to political bias, disputes take up too much time, which could be used writing articles instead. Having some experience in many wiki-roles I realized that the dispute resolution is very important for the project and I endorse that arbcom is the last step in the dispute resolution process, a process that should only be followed before arbitration can be considered. Wikinews is done by volunteers; if it is a comfortable place for productive work - people will come here to do productive works, if it is a comfortable place for trolling, vandalizing and disruptive editing - trolls, vandals and tendentious editors will be in and productive people out. If it will be a comfortable place for abusing administrative tools and biting newbies then again power hungry, and I like how for my entire term to date we have not needed the ArbCom, that is always a good sign. Brian | (Talk) | New Zealand Portal 10:03, 1 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

I have been a Wikinewsie for over three years. I am an admin, a bureaucrat and a steward. I have served two terms as an arbcom member. I hope we will not need to use the arbcom any time soon, but I believe that we should have it for when we need it. --Cspurrier (talk) 20:16, 6 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Even though I am contributing less than I once was, it is because I am trying to help build Wikinews into something more than just a place that rewrites stories from other media outlets. I believe Wikinews can be better, and that's what I am trying to do with my original reporting and interviews (I am an accredited reporter). Being a member of the Arbitration Committee would help me make Wikinews better if there ever was big dispute between members and I was able to help resolve the situation. The latter reason is also why I am an administrator on Wikinews. --Nzgabriel | Talk 00:01, 12 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]


As occurred last year, the candidates with the largest number of support votes will be elected to the new ArbCom. There are nine candidates in the running. Unlike last year, there are a total of six slots open this election; the six who get the most support will be elected.

Before voting, please check the F.A.Q..

Voting has now closed. Do not alter the votes.

Please vote here.

  •   Support Very active contributor who I believe would be a good ArbCom member. Anonymous101 (talk) 11:18, 19 July 2008 (UTC) I am revoking my support due to his actions at this and the issues raised below by Adambro. Anonymous101 (talk) 17:13, 21 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]
  •   Comment, if we can't comment on candidates seeking to be on the Arbirtration Committee and have oversight and checkuser rights then there is something very wrong. I can't find a more appropriate venue than this. There is no denying that Brian is an extremely valuable contributor but I'm afraid that I can't consider him appropriate for the Arbitration Committee. ArbCom is about resolving conflicts and I'd expect anyone on the committee to demonstrate an ability to both resolve conflicts and to recognise where they are developing and act to prevent them. Brian has a rather interesting way of dealing with issues. For example, dismissing concerns from respected users as trolling and giving real trolls the reaction they desire with nonsense blocks of one minute duration. He also seems to view any questioning of his actions has some kind of personal attack. Him regularly resorting to profanities also leaves me with doubts about his ability to stay calm in difficult situations. Adambro (talk) 05:39, 22 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]
This is highly irregular and inappropriate. Please remove this comment and attempt to formulate it as a question. --Brian McNeil / talk 08:42, 22 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]
IMHO long-paragraph comments are inappropriate here along with the votes, but might be better placed on the Questions page, or the talk page. Cirt (talk) 12:25, 22 July 2008 (UTC)[reply]

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I confirm Brianmc, Cirt, Cspurrier, Skenmy, Brian, and Nzgabriel as the winners of the Arbitration Committee elections for 2008. Mike Halterman (talk) 20:00, 1 August 2008 (UTC)[reply]

Now calling on my colleagues to second. Mike Halterman (talk) 20:00, 1 August 2008 (UTC)[reply]
Second that. --Steven Fruitsmaak (Reply) 21:22, 1 August 2008 (UTC)[reply]
As two out of three of the committee members feel the results are the same; we do not need to wait for the final opinion at this point. I hereby declare all six elected to seats that expire on July 31, 2009. Mike Halterman (talk) 22:47, 1 August 2008 (UTC)[reply]
(For the record, so do I, but I was late to the party. Thunderhead 07:22, 22 September 2008 (UTC))[reply]