Battlestar Wiki:Requests for comment

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BW:RFC

Requests for Comment is the process to encourage community consensus on the identification and resolution of significant disputes between members of the community, regardless of their standing. The goal is to identify any disputes with members and resolve them in a manner consistent with the beliefs of the Battlestar Wiki community.

RfCs generally involve the content of an article (to define consensus for its content) or behavior of a contributor in regards to an article or activity (to define the extent, if any, in which a contributor has blatantly violated a Battlestar Wiki policy which affects the community at-large).

Other contributors can join in the discussions in an RfC to help them resolve difficulties and disputes in articles or talk pages. A good quality RfC can help contributors resolve differences, add different insights, give comments and opinions on how others might see some wording, and so on.

Bureaucrats take point in RfCs as moderators to keep the process on-topic, note policy and guidelines, and generally maintain civility in the discussion.

Beginning an RfC (or how to AVOID doing so)

Before filing any RfC:

  1. Take a deep breath and relax. You're about to start arguing about the events in a TV show. There's no need to take other opinions about the show too personally. The show is a fictional work and is not always consistent. Take a walk, have something cool to drink. You might realize that it doesn't matter as much. Filing an RFC is a serious matter. Don't waste the time of other contributors for a "petty squabble" or argument that might be best resolved with letting the matter drop, or with an apology.
  2. If the dispute involves a personal attack or other issue, try reporting the matter first to an administrator. This may save time as administrators can determine if the problem isn't about the wiki content, but how an editor behaves (and there are clear rules about such things), such as spacing the offending editor for a brief time (like Cylons, they may be allowed to come back later).
  3. For articles, try to first work out the issue as best as possible on the article's talk page, remembering that Battlestar Wiki is not a chat forum.
  4. For a user debate, try to discuss the issue directly with the other user on their talk page.
  5. Get a second (or third) opinion from an administrator, who is knowledgeable on policy and guidelines.
  6. If the discussion continues at length without resolution...
    • Post a message on the talk page of the user with whom you have the complaint that an RfC is being opened.
    • Post a message on the Administrators Noticeboard that you are going to open an RfC.
    • Create the RfC using the procedures below.

Witnesses

Two witnesses are needed to activate any RfC. A witness acknowledges that they have witnessed the issue and certifies their attempt and failure to aid in the dispute. Two witnesses from bona fide user accounts (not "sock puppets" or users with accounts less than 30 days old) MUST add their names in the appropriate RfC field to validate the RfC. If no witnesses appear, the RfC may be thrown out, and the process to resolve the issue returns to the article talk page.

Once the RfC has received witnesses and a bureaucrat notes that the page is open for commentary, any eligible Battlestar Wiki contributor is welcome to provide comments to assist in reaching agreements on the RfC page. Battlestar Wiki policies must be adhered to in the matter of an RfC (noting not to attempt using the letter of the policy to defeat its spirit) and cannot be ignored in the process.

Eligible contributors, as defined by this RFC process, are users who have had a user account on Battlestar Wiki in good standing for 30 days or longer. It should be made exceptionally clear that this rule is not an effort to disenfranchise voters, but to ensure that voters know the duties and responsibilities of a Battlestar Wiki contributor and to vote accordingly based not on superficial criteria, but on the policies and procedures used to contribute to the wiki.

During an RfC, editors should:

  • Try not to be confrontational. Be friendly and civil, and assume good faith in other editors' actions.
  • Mediate where possible by identifying common ground, and attempt to draw editors together rather than push them apart.
  • Educate users as necessary by referring to the appropriate policies and guidelines, and show in article examples why the process is used and what problems occur when the policy is not adhered to.

Article disputes

To start an RfC on an article dispute:

Begin by creating a new page, type in the following field, substituting the name of the article that is involved.

<inputbox> type=create width=75 prefix=Battlestar Wiki:Requests for comment/ default=Article name buttonlabel=Begin RFC preload=Template:RFC </inputbox>

But do not press "Begin RFC" yet until you read these directions:

  1. Edit the preloaded template as needed to include: the issue in the "Statement of dispute" section, noting articles and talk pages where the problem occurs, relevant discussions and mediation. Be concise and to-the-point. This isn't a trial.
  2. Save the page.
  3. Edit this page and place the following in the Submitted dispute pages section.
    • {{Battlestar Wiki:Requests for comment/'''Article'''}} ----
  4. WAIT for two witnesses to acknowledge the dispute. Without this, the RFC will fail.
  5. WAIT for the bureaucrat(s) to MOVE the article to the "Active disputes pages" section, which opens the article's "floor" to other contributors for comments.

User conduct disputes

User conduct disputes should be rare, as many Battlestar Wiki policies exist that sanction users for specific unacceptable behaviors, such as spamming, vandalism, and obvious personal attacks. Administrators may supercede a submitted RfC for such behavior and directly intervene, blocking the user per policy and guidelines for such violations. User conduct RfCs generally occur when user behavior create unforeseen issues between other users (including the community), an article, as well as policy(s).

To start an RFC on user conduct:

Begin by creating a new page, type in the following field, adding the username of the individual in which you are in dispute with.

<inputbox> type=create width=75 prefix=Battlestar Wiki:Requests for comment/ default=Username buttonlabel=Begin RFC preload=Template:RFC </inputbox>

But do not press "Begin RFC" yet until you read these directions:

  1. On the page, modify as needed to include: the issue in the "Statement of dispute" section, noting articles and talk pages where the problem occurs, relevant discussions and mediation. Be concise and to-the-point. This isn't a trial.
  2. Save the page again.
  3. Edit this page and place the following link in the Submitted dispute pages section
    • {{Battlestar Wiki:Requests for comment/'''Username'''}} ----
  4. WAIT for two witnesses to acknowledge the dispute. Without this, the RFC will fail.
  5. WAIT for the bureaucrat(s) to MOVE the article to the "Active disputes pages" section, which opens the article's "floor" to other contributors for comments.

Submitted dispute pages (still need to meet the two witness threshold)

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Active dispute pages (have met the two witness threshold)

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Archived RFCs