Wikipedia's Treatment of WikiAlpha

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This is to keep a log of the appalling manner in which Wikipedia treats people who run even marginally against the grain of its tyrannical policies.

Spam from Wikialpha

The following appeared here on July 10th, 2011.

I've gotten a spam email via my Wikipedia account. It was saying an article I did an AfD on is preserved at WikiAlpha. Also said to find more and join up, goto WikiAlpha. It was sent by a non-existent user. Bgwhite (talk) 08:41, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

I'm not sure what admin action you are expecting here - do you have anything in mind? -- Boing! said Zebedee (talk) 09:10, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
This has happened before. According to this thread, Bgwhite (talk) 09:23, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Good question, raised at Dougweller (talk) 11:55, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Can you tell us the username? T. Canens (talk) 12:04, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
As an aside, I once tried to start an SPI for various versions of these spambots at Singularity42 (talk) 13:04, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
The Wikialpha admins seemed very responsive to issues about licensing compliance (although I've not visited their website since helping them with the issue). My naive question: has anybody asked them to stop? :) (Somebody may have done, I know.) --Moonriddengirl (talk) 13:06, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

Great! Now the world can read about ƒETCHCOMMS/</span> 14:27, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

Yes, but who in their right mind would want to? Besides, it could be worse. It could be goatse. --Alan the Roving Ambassador (talk) 16:03, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

This appears to have been resolved; WikiAlphaRobot, who was sending the emails, has been blocked as a sock of WikiAlphaBot, who was the first account sending these messages. elektrikSHOOS (talk) 16:29, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

Nope, not resolved. I just got another one a few minutes ago from ValloVir. Obviously, block as a sock, but this is starting to get really annoying. I'm almost at the point of disabling the ability to let other users email me. Singularity42 (talk) 16:53, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Blocked. Dougweller (talk) 16:58, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Yea, I'm still getting the emails from ValloVir. Thank you for putting the block on. Bgwhite (talk) 17:02, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

I have alerted the administrator of WikiAlpha about this discussion (at least the one who idenfied himself as such here) - both at the talk page of his user account here, and at the talk page of his WikiAlpha account. Singularity42 (talk) 17:17, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

So what is this, a wiki-mirror for editors who can't cut it here? I'm sure there's dozens of these things around. Tarc (talk) 17:28, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

Lots of them around, but this one specifically preserves articles that up for AfD. The main problem that brings it to ANI is that they are created bot accounts to send spam emails to Wikipedia editors about their mirror site. Singularity42 (talk) 17:32, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Is this truly spam though? Wikipedia insisted that Wikialpha keep a list of the article editors with the articles copied, isn't it appropriate to INFORM an editor his work has been copied to another wiki? Isn't that what the email links are there for? If someone doesn't want a email they can turn the link off. If they specifically don't want Wikialpha emails, I'm sure they could request to be put on a "no call list" with Wikialpha. Mathewignash (talk) 17:46, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
As for what Wikialpha is, it's a user edited encyclopedia, just like Wikipedia. The main difference being that is doesn't have requirements for notablity, as the editors feel Wikipedia is a bit too strict on that. So they copy deleted articles from Wikipedia into their deletion space, and if if someone wants to look over the formerly deleted article, and sees it's fine except for falling short of Wikipedia's notability standards, they move it to regular article space on Wikialpha. I edit articles on both sites. It's actually a good place to keep articles in development that border on being notabile as you compile sources to prove notability. Mathewignash (talk) 17:51, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

I'm Administrator Govind on WikiAlpha. I took a look at GSMR (talk) 17:53, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

  • It's most definitely against the spirit of the policy; I've blocked users for spamming research projects via email, for example, and have done so with authority. Running an unauthorised bot is most certainly against the rules. Cease and desist immediately or, unless a consensus forms here that this behaviour is kosher, I will quite happily block the accounts. Ironholds (talk) 17:59, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Using the Wikipedia's e-mail to send what amounts to advertising for your little hole-in-the-wall should not be in any way permissible here. IMO, block this GSMR person and anyone else found to be involved in the spam-flood. Tarc (talk) 17:57, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Please do devolve to name calling Tarc. If GSMR looked at the policy and tried to fall within it, he's editing in good faith. Disputes in policy should be talked over before reverting to blocks. Mathewignash (talk) 18:04, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
GSMR/Govind and Mathewignash, it should have become clear to you by now that these e-mails are not wanted. The bot has been blocked. Re-creating it was an act of block-evading sockpuppetry, if nothing else. Running unauthorized bots is also against our bot policy. Bots should also never operate without a clear disclosure of who runs them. But now, let's cut to the chase, shall we: who creates these bots, who controls them? Certainly somebody involved with the administration of Wikialpha? So, was it you? In that case, desist. Fut.Perf. ☼ 18:02, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Not me. I'm acting as a representative for WikiAlpha on this discussion, though. GSMR (talk) 18:03, 9 July 2011 (UTC)
Then tell the person who is doing it to stop. Ironholds (talk) 18:04, 9 July 2011 (UTC)

Licensing problems regarding WikiAlpha?

The following appeared here on July 4th, 2011.

I received an email (via my Wikipedia address) that an article I had nominated for deletion (but isn't actually yet deleted) was moved to WikiAlpha, which is apparently a brand new site that purports to be "like Wikipedia, but without notability and original research requirements." While that's fine and I have no problems in that regard, I noticed that all of their content, including content directly copied from Wikipedia, is licensed under the Creative Commons public domain license. Granted, I'm not good with copyright law, but in my experience, Wikipedia uses share-alike licenses—meaning that all copied content must use the same license, with attribution.

This appears to be a very new site, so I thought I'd bring this to the attention of more experienced users to process this and elevate it to those who can deal with it if necessary. If this is in the wrong forum, feel free to redirect me to the right one. Cheers. elektrikSHOOS (talk) 00:20, 3 July 2011 (UTC)

In related news, the email message was sent to me from WikiAlphaBot, which appears to exist to copy articles up for deletion to WikiAlpha and send courtesy emails to someone involved with the page. elektrikSHOOS (talk) 00:23, 3 July 2011 (UTC)
In case you guys weren't aware of it, there's also Wikibin ("The Recycle Bin of Wikipedia!"), which is licensed under GFDL.-- ObsidinSoul 02:16, 3 July 2011 (UTC)
And the old emijrp (talk) 07:43, 3 July 2011 (UTC)
I think that the licenses are incompatible. The relevant page is Wikibin. Flatscan (talk) 04:32, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
I've left a note on the page of one of the site administrators (as listed on their page about the site) letting them know of this discussion and inviting them to participate here. elektrikSHOOS (talk) 18:02, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Good going. :) You might want to tweak your note. :) It's correct in essence, but Wikipedia's content is not all licensed under GFDL. We use dual-licenses these days: CC-By-SA 3.0. and GFDL, and there is some text available under the former only (but no text available only under the latter). Hopefully they'll correct the issue. (Not speaking for the WMF here.) --Maggie Dennis (WMF) (talk) 18:09, 4 July 2011 (UTC)
Right, forgot we were using CC licensing these days. Will adjust. elektrikSHOOS (talk) 18:13, 4 July 2011 (UTC)

Hi, I am from WikiAlpha (administrator Richard.) We wish to keep our content under the public domain where possible (i.e. where authors have directly entered it into the site.) However where we have copied articles which are currently on Wikipedia and nominated for deletion, we understand that the above complaints are valid. I'm not an expert on copyright law, but would it be sufficient, in your opinion, to place a notification that the content on a particular page is licensed under a separate license contrary to the general public domain license?

Additionally, we are happy to remove content that authors do not with to be republished on our site. Just send us an email to [email protected] Thank you. Wootfarm (talk) 03:55, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

I think this would be fine if (1) it was sure to specify the original content was from Wikipedia, with a link if the content still exists on here, and (2) specified the license, which here would be CC-BY-SA 3.0. In my (admittedly nonprofessional) view, this would satisfy both the attribution and share-alike terms of both the CC license and the GFDL. I would be welcome to help out over there creating a template that would satisfy this. Let me know if you would want this. elektrikSHOOS (talk) 04:19, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
We're upgrading our servers right now, but we will institute this policy immediately after. Thanks for the kind offer and the productive feedback.Wootfarm (talk) 08:26, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
If the article has been deleted on Wikipedia, you'll need a list of contributors to the article for license compliance. Probably most administrators would be happy to copy this for you, though it will make a bit of work. --Maggie Dennis (WMF) (talk) 13:48, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
Our robot can automatically record the contributors for articles that still exist on Wikipedia, and under your advice we will instate this feature. However for articles already copied, we don't have any means of obtaining these lists. We have about 50 deleted articles at the moment. If you know of an administrator who would be willing to provide the history pages for each of these articles, please let us know. If not, we've made a best effort attempt at CCA compliance; which I believe is generally sufficient. Thanks.Wootfarm (talk) 18:14, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
I'll be happy to help under my "volunteer" account (a bit out of scope for this one). Do you have a list of these somewhere? --Maggie Dennis (WMF) (talk) 19:00, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
I'm known as Govind on WikiAlpha, these are the list of pages currently on the Deleted namespace:

<moved below for organization>

GSMR (talk) 19:42, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
Okay. :) (In volunteer mode, dusting my hands, ready to get digging. :D) --Moonriddengirl (talk) 21:25, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Most of those have not yet been deleted, so you can still snag the attribution yourself. :) I'm sure you know how to use Help:Page history, since you're using the same software. Separating out the ones that are still bluelinks from the ones for which I've provided attribution at your Wiki. --Moonriddengirl (talk) 21:48, 5 July 2011 (UTC)

Now attributed at WikiAlpha
Still accessible on Wikipedia
I'm currently in the process of copying the revision history of each of these articles into a text file; once I am done with that I will attribute the contributions appropriately. GSMR (talk) 22:58, 5 July 2011 (UTC)
Done everything up to DEPOT, will continue later (rest are saved in a text file so no need to worry about preserving them). Thanks for your help! GSMR (talk) 02:47, 6 July 2011 (UTC)