As I mentioned in my post below, Conservapedia is already dead in the water, if not floundering at the gunwales. However, it wasn’t always so. At the beginning of 2009, it was a vibrant and happening, albeit it odd, little community. There were regularly over 100 different active editors a week, there were conversations and friendly chats going between talk-pages and the sysops were even inclined to enter into a debate – until they started losing said debate, of course.
Roll forward almost two years, and the little community is looking very run down. The long-time residents have effectively put barricades across the roads, allowing none in, except those who sneak past the defences, and are speedily shot, before they can smash any more windows. The vibrant little community has shrunk to a few old-timers (barely more than 40 editors as week – and 90% of those are blocked with in 1 edit), who no longer talk, but peer out at the world from behind their curtains, shotgun close at hand.
Now, you might be asking why I’m waxing all lyrical like this? Well, I’m going to go back to an e-mail that was sent to Conservapedia’s inner sanctum, by a former sysop during May 2009, with whom I’ve developed a close relationship. I’m not going to quote the whole letter, suffice to say she was angry and frustrated at the time she wrote it. This is also the same letter to which Ed Poor replied, “That’s not the way we work here.” (as discussed in The Fine Art of Backstabbing.) Anyway, here’s the e-mail, ah to hell with it, I’ll paste the full text – it gives better context.
However, as you once said Brian, TK needs to come down off his high horse and Ed, you said you like to operate as a surgeon excising all that is wrong. Let us see if you can live up to what you say.
As we know, TK’s favourite defence when confronted with anything, is to claim that the e-mails, IRC chats and trolling on other people’s talk pages (as he has done on mine elsewhere) are fraudulent copies. If that is the case, then at least CP’s own entries speak for themselves.
So, what are the allegations.
- Attempting to discredit CP by distorting news articles on the front page – adding “internet vandals” to the “Saudi Death Chip” article (later removed, when even he prossibly realised how stupid it looked), claiming VP Biden is a drinker (which could open CP up to a libel claim, should his office be made aware of such a claim).
- Added to this is the ongoing abuse of editors.
- First he lies about the timing of a news article, claiming to have added it before an editor raised it – clearly a lie and when this was pointed out, confronting the editor with “Wow, feeling picked on much?” (http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Talk:Main_Page&diff=prev&oldid=663573). Is this suitable behaviour from somebody purporting to be a representative of CP? (Update: Links: TK says “You should check the main page, there was a new item added a few hours ago. User: I posted 20 minutes before the news article went up. TK: Feeling picked on much? What a piece of work Terry is.)
- - His vicious reply to HSMom (probably an attempt to drive away another editor) was totally out of line (http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Talk:Main_Page&diff=prev&oldid=663573) – since oversighted by TK; screenshot here. As I mentioned, CP is open to libel allegations, so at the very least a citation (or at least some fact checking would be in order). However, the response is bluster. Once again unsuitable behaviour. More worrying, is he sees anybody contradicting his point of view as being a blockable offence (http://conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Talk%3AMain_Page&diff=664436&oldid=664422 and http://conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Talk%3AMain_Page&diff=664439&oldid=664436) Notice how he once again he attacks the man and not the ball. Screen shot here.
- He then publicly attacks Conservative, stating that Andy has allowed for both views to be included in articles (I can find no mention of that in my e-mails so maybe it happened after Andy’s knee-jerk reaction). However, when it is pointed out that the article has nothing to do with a non-YEC viewpoint and has no room for including the evolutionary viewpoint, only then does TK “no longer want to discuss it on-wiki”, having been made to look foolish, but having scored another point in the game he is playing.
- Jinx is another example. Surely, there is no coincidence between Jinx raising the issue of using inverted commas as “Humor” (note the non-multicultural spelling) and TK’s blocking and the subsequent removal of rights. The only reason he is still around is in some misgotten notion that they will be restored.
Most seriously, TK was seriously out of line when he arbitrarily made changes to the blocking reasons, thus rendering ZB (the sysops’ Google talk group, the Zeulodon Blues) null and void by his own actions. He somehow thinks he is above discussing things within ZB, before they are done, and once again adding items such as “liberal multiculturism” makes CP look stupid, narrow-minded and even bigoted. However, the lack of action seems to indicate the other members of ZB are happy with this turn of events, so it is probably best that I have withdrawn.
How many editors have left since his return (excluding those that he conveniently brands as vandals)? Philip, Foxtrot, Bill, Taj, Tash, BrianCo are just a few long-serving names that come to mind. (To that add Jallen, DeanS, WesleyS, CPalmer, AddisonJ, the list goes on and on) The recent changes list these days, is starting to look a little barren.
If the remaining administrators have any sense of what is right, they will take action to redress these wrongs, or will they continue to sit back and allow CP to be run into the ground? As I have mentioned to Ed and others – have a look at the dwindling list of names in your recent changes. Alarm bells should be ringing.
Ok, so hindsight is 20/20, but damn if that girl didn’t hit the nail on the head.