Archive for July, 2008

Column 17: First Post-Unblock Impressions

It’s now been a couple of days since my unexpected unblock from Conservapedia, and I’ve collected a couple of impressions.

Curiously, it is at the same time much the same place and a much different place from the one I left a little over a year ago. It is much the same in that it still o’erflows with the usual ultra-right wing bias, the usual misconduct by management and their conies, and the usual almost gleeful disregard for demonstrable facts. Nothing new under the sun there.

On the other hand, it is also a much different place. For one thing, it is a much quieter place than it used to be. There seems to be very few actual editors left, and it sometimes takes days to fill up the recent changes list, especially if you only look at the, for an alleged encyclopedia rather important, main space edits. I guess this situation is one that one must expect considering the rather cavalier attitude that most sysops show towards user right and block reasons and such. These thing tend to erode the potential user base over time.

And for another thing – although one that it probably closely related to the first – Conservapedia is seriously messed up right now. And I’m not just referring to the ways in which it’s always been messed up; no, these days, it’s messed up technically as well. I’m getting network timeouts and connection interruptions for hours at a time here. I have no idea how I’m ever going to produce my many valuable contributions under these circumstances.

Nevertheless, I’m there, for the time being and to the extent possibly. And I’m contributing, for some reason unknown even to myself. And I’ve managed to only make one snarky comment in the two days I’ve been there. We’ll see how long I can keep that up.

Until then, good night and good luck.

A most surprising development

Dear readers! We interrupt your regularly scheduled hiatus to bring you this important update: Your author, yours truly, has recently been unblocked on Conservapedia, for reasons that are not entirely clear. Our favourite sysop Bohdan/Henry/SHahB/Oscar/Olaf/etc. claims that I have been “begging and whining to be unblocked.” I must admit this is news to me, so either someone has been impersonating me, or this is a manifestation of Henry’s somewhat ideosyncratic sense of humour. Or maybe I’m just suffering from amnesia.

Now what was I talking about again?

Seriously though, whatever the cause, I must admit this is an unsual situation, and that I find myself at a bit of a loss about what to do with this. On the one hand, I have serious moral issues about contributing meaningfully to a project whose only reason for existence is to push a political agenda that I fundamentally disagree with. On the other hand, while others might see this as a prime opportunity for vandalizing and/or parodying, I’m not going to do such things either. On the third (!) hand, this is far too unsual to just ignore it.

So this is a bit of a dilemma. I may let you know if I ever solve it.

In the meantime, as always, good night and good luck.


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