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Alexis Jazz

Joined 13 October 2007
Commonistrators - Now you see it.png
“If you want to change the rule, go ahead and try, but please don't expect to get a variance from a well established rule here.”
(admin response to what wasn't even a proposed rule change)

Some admins are stubborn and/or ignorant. Some of their actions really harm this project and demotivate good contributors.

Commons issuesEdit

Chipping away at imagesEdit

If a new version of a file is uploaded that is not obviously worse, nobody cares. Compression could be increased, file headers invalidated, poor crops be done or micro-graffiti added somewhere in an image. Especially with a vague comment like "improved version" or "better source" these don't get noticed. If it does get reported eventually, it will go away without administrator action in a few days.

Images removedEdit

There is an easy way to remove images. Add {{subst:npd}} to an image and 9 times out of 10 it will go away after just one week. Especially if the uploader hasn't been active on Commons for a few months or more. If a user removes the nonsense template, an admin will put it back.

Scans of coins and similar objects could be removed by finding a non-free scan of the same object that is older than the file on Commons. The file on Commons could be nominated for deletion.

It's also possible to nominate a file and linking any other place on the web where it occurs. When a file is marked {{copyvio|source=URL}} the odds of it being removed are even bigger. This will also not trigger a DR.

Images keptEdit

If an image can't be found with Google image search (search by picture) or TinEye and has no visible watermark it is very unlikely to be removed. Social media photos often can't be found this way. A copyrighted photo that is photoshopped can also be hard to find.

Breaking descriptionsEdit

It's possible to remove (parts of) the description on a page, then remove the license information, then put the description back and add {{subst:nld}} to the page. Either the image will be removed or the description will be broken by an admin after 7 days.

Useless selfiesEdit

One can create an account, upload a selfie and never use the account again. The image will rarely be removed.

Closed file formatsEdit


When trying to upload a video with .mp4 extension, the upload wizard bluntly informs you it's not gonna happen. You shot the video yourself? It's a video you downloaded from YouTube that is actually in the public domain? Don't care, get lost. Sure, the wizard could offer you to convert the file to an open format that is allowed by Commons. But this is much easier!

Stressing users to lieEdit

When media is uploaded after (local) midnight and the user enters the correct date, the upload wizard will tell the user that "The date that you selected is in the future.". The user must lie about the publishing date to make this message go away. It can be ignored, but it's just wrong.

Scaler issueEdit

There is an issue with the Mediawiki scaler. I'd love to show you, if it weren't for the fact that the image that illustrated this has been deleted for no reason along with the discussion regarding it's deletion.

Great subst:npd exampleEdit

Soon to be deleted selfie by Arghyadip photography.

One of if not the best selfie I've ever seen by @Arghyadip photographer:. Instead of giving this skilled photographer a warm welcome (Hey there! Welcome to Commons! I hope we haven't scared you away), we are slapping him with a stupid "No permission" template asking for OTRS. Now, why is this so funny deeply sad? If someone were to actually bother to look at his activity, they would have noticed he also created a Wikipedia article about himself. Every sign indicating he is who he says he is. I haven't been able to find any "professional" mail address for him (he does not have his own domain name) so OTRS that way will fail. He has a website, but given that I only know this because it's listed in the Wikipedia article he wrote, what exactly does that prove? I mean, before going there I tried to find him using various search engines. And I failed. So even if he would add license information to the website (we don't even know if that's possible, we don't know if that site allows editing descriptions after upload) we would have to ask ourselves what that proves anyway.

If we were to ask for proof at all, by far the best way to ask for it would be by asking him to take a selfie with Commons in the background or write "Hi Commons!" on a piece of paper and take a selfie with that. There is a picture in which his face can be seen on, so we could verify it's him. For the record, I don't think we should require this. We don't ask OTRS from everyone who makes pretty pictures.

Long story short: Theinstantmatrix will be responsible for the deletion of one of the best selfies ever in approximately three days. And probably chasing him away from Commons for good.

Arghyadip, I'm sorry for the way this community is treating you.

OTRS is broken by design, the lawyers did itEdit

Very broken.

Templates and release generatorEdit

There is a Release Generator that works quite well. But various places (including the {{No permission since}} template!) are still referring to mail templates. Increasing the workload of the OTRS team and reducing the chances of ever getting proper permission.

Right holders are expected to contact OTRSEdit

First of all, OTRS can't contact right holders. So either right holders need to contact OTRS all by themselves (sure..) or a user needs to ask them to contact OTRS. I did that a couple of times, I've never seen anyone else doing that. You would get a lot more response if OTRS could actively contact right holders, but for some stupid legal reason they can't. WMF is afraid it would look like WMF is contacting them and OTRS is somehow legally not WMF.

You still with me? No? Good.

So what is the difference when a user contacts a rights holder asking them to send permission to OTRS? Slim to none. When they are sent to, wouldn't they still think they are dealing with WMF? Yes, they would! But legally, it's watertight.

The problem is WMF is technically just a hoster, not responsible for the content uploaded. YOU are. More on that later.

And this process is completely fucking invisibleEdit

So when you ask a right holder to contact OTRS, what happens next? Nobody knows! You'll never know if they even tried to contact OTRS if the permission is not obtained. If you contact OTRS, how long will it take to get a response? Your guess is as good as mine.

Where the lawyers at?Edit

With all these complicated copyright issues, you need some lawyers right? They are here. Nobody knows where exactly, or how to contact them. They are like Bigfoot. Everybody knows Bigfoot exists, because everybody knows somebody who claims to have seen somebody who saw Bigfoot. The result of this is that when a legal decision needs to be made, it will be made by an administrator who may or may not be able to read.

Upload to Commons, get suedEdit

As you just learned, WMF is just a hoster. YOU are responsible. So okay, maybe you upload a logo that you later find out is likely copyrighted by UK law. So you request for it to be deleted. The administrator decides UK law can kiss his ass and keeps it. Now the uploader is at risk of a lawsuit, even though they did nominate it to be deleted. But uploaders have no "delete" button.

Legally, WMF may not have a problem. As long as the image in question is covered by either fair use or not eligible for copyright in the US, WMF can host it. Commons does not want fair use content, but the judge won't care about that. It's origin doesn't matter. What may matter is the country the uploader performed the upload from:

“You have to respect the laws of the country you upload from, that's why we have the "country of origin" requirement, as 99% of works are uploaded from their country of origin (random figure, but I would be surprised if that's not the case).” - As said by an admin

About 87% of statistics is made up, 72% of that is made up poorly. So you upload something from Italy while you are not in Italy or the US? Just uploading a photo that was already here which you only retouched also counts! You are doing something the administrators did not think could ever happen and you could be at risk of a lawsuit.

But things could be worseEdit

These guys are for real? $30M is saying yes.

Does that look like attribution to you? Seriously, that's all they got.

Wondering how they convinced Mike Novagratz to open his purse? Here's my my two cents: they didn't. Mike just gave them money he usually spends on caviar to unclog his toilet so he would sound more interesting at dinner parties. And investor meetings. Should've stuck with the caviar.