Wikispecies:Requests for Comment

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Welcome to Requests for Comment. This space is for any conversations that might require the opinions of the community to decide policy or the application of policy. Start a new conversation. For general conversation, see Wikispecies:Village Pump.

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Change of Bot policy[edit]

This poll has closed. Final results:
Support = 9
Oppose = 2
The motions have passed, changes to the bot policy as per this poll are accepted. Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 19:15, 27 May 2017 (UTC)


After some concerns were brought out regarding (a) the definition of AWB whether it qualifies as a bot or is just considered an assisted editing and in view that some admins are making use of it without a bot account. (b) the breach of automated Bots and assisted-editing speed limits.

I propose the following modifications to be made to the Wikispecies:Bot policy text.

  • After the phrase "Use of tools to assist with repetitive tasks, such as reverting vandalism, is termed assisted editing, and is not usually considered to be operation of a bot." add the following: Some software-tools may also be excluded from the bot definition to be considered assisted editing. The tools currently excluded are: AWB (AutoWikiBrowser) and JWB (JavaWikiBrowser), which is a web-version of the AWB. These tools need user-approval to complete each edit and can be used in an automatic mode (Auto save) only with a bot account. Please note that if you're using these programs regularly to make more than 20 edits per minute you're strongly advised to open a bot account.
  • Change the following bot policy text: "Bots' editing speed should be regulated in some way; subject to approval, bots doing non-urgent tasks may edit approximately once every ten seconds, while bots doing more urgent tasks may edit approximately once every four seconds." to: Automatic Bots' editing speed should be regulated in some way; subject to approval, bots doing non-urgent tasks may edit approximately once every five seconds, while bots doing more urgent tasks may edit approximately once every two seconds. Assisted-editing with a short span of activity is allowed to edit at a rate of up to 50 edits per minute.

See also the discussions at Wikispecies:Village_Pump#Proposal_of_bot-policy_modification and at Wikispecies:Administrators'_Noticeboard#AutoWikiBrowser.

Voting[edit]

Vote started Saturday, 20 May, 15:38 (UTC) and will end on Saturday, 27 May, 15:38 (UTC).

  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Mariusm (talk) 15:38, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Andyboorman (talk) 15:54, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 15:54, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose the unjustified extension from the current limit of 6 edits per minute to a hefty 50 edits per minute. The meaning of "excluded from the bot definition to be considered assisted editing" is unclear. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 15:58, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support --Franz Xaver (talk) 18:13, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support --Thiotrix (talk) 18:31, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support Dan Koehl (talk) 23:53, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support -- MKOliver (talk) 00:43, 21 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol oppose vote.svg Oppose you not alone in the Wikmedia universe. Especially when page creations are involved. BTW: What are urgent tasks? --Succu (talk) 19:32, 23 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support I think this should be good to meet most users' needs. I would probably add a corollary to the final text such as, "For example, if you are fixing a small formatting error that affects a few dozen pages or if you are adding a template that only applies to a narrow subset of entries." — The preceding unsigned comment was added by Koavf (talkcontribs) 20:21, 23 May 2017 (UTC).
  • Symbol support vote.svg SupportAlvaro Molina ( - ) 07:27, 27 May 2017 (UTC)
  • Symbol support vote.svg Support - Neferkheperre (talk) 00:54, 28 May 2017 (UTC) Action was not feasible Not valid. User cast their vote after the poll was closed. Tommy Kronkvist (talk), 18:55, 28 May 2017 (UTC).

Comments[edit]

Our bot policy currently makes clear: "The term bot... refers to a script that modifies Wikispecies' content with some degree of automation, whether it is entirely automated, or assists a human contributor in some way. This policy applies to any such process."

Note also that there is also voting underway on an overlapping proposal, at Wikispecies:Village Pump#Proposal of bot-policy modification. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 16:02, 20 May 2017 (UTC)

This RfC is the vote to change the bot policy, so what the policy currently says is irrelevant. Why you wish to hamstring the taxonomic editors on this site I do not know. But they are deciding here what is best for Wikispecies in regards to this. The current proposals aim to redefine bots, place awb in this scenario. Rates are also being set in accordance with the needs of Wikispecies, not EN WP from where the original policy here was taken. The RfC vote is open to all and its outcome on 27 May will determine the policy here. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 16:10, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
It is highly relevant that people understand what is proposed to be undone; and what conditions proposed to be discarded. It is doubly relevant when the RfC opens with claims about whether or not AWB falls within the terms of the current policy. Your claim that I "wish to hamstring the taxonomic editors on this site" is both false and itself a breach of our own policies.; and I ask that you therefore strike it, and desist from repeating it. Your reference to EN WP is a straw man; no one has claimed that we must or should act in accordance with its needs. Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 17:00, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Fair enough I have struck out the line you wished. As for reference to EN WP being a straw-man argument, I would argue against that, since our original policy did come from their's. The point being that issues there are not entirely relevant here. I never said you think we should follow their policy, I said our current policy was derived from their policy and is in need of modification. People should know what is being changed of course. The original policy is still apparent. Since it has been discussed as to whether or not AWB / JWB falls under the definition of bots, it would seem important to be clear on this issue too. I have closed the other discussions (without removing them of course) so that all discussion can now take place here, with a community vote on what we need here on Wikispecies. Cheers Scott Thomson (Faendalimas) talk 17:18, 20 May 2017 (UTC)

@Succu: Re: "urgent" tasks - the current bot policy says "The urgency of a task should always be considered; tasks that do not need to be completed quickly (for example, renaming categories) can and should be accomplished at a slower rate than those that do (for example, reverting vandalism).". Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 20:45, 23 May 2017 (UTC)

What left us defining what a urgent task is, Mr. Mabbett. --Succu (talk) 21:04, 23 May 2017 (UTC)