There’s been quite a lot of frustration and speculation here over the past days, which is understandable. I’d like to clear up a few questions, and talk about how things need to move forward with regard to this site.
It is not our intent to drive anyone away from the site. The blocks that have been implemented recently are all temporary and they happened as a result of abusive behavior by those users. It’s perfectly fine to express disagreement or even anger, but the discourse does not have to descend into profanity and threats. The blocks are all set to expire next week, and no more need to be implemented as long as everyone remains mature.
There is no question about ownership. Content on Wikia is published under a Creative Commons license, and our Wiki Creation Policy makes it clear that communities on Wikia “are community projects, not personal websites. They are not owned by their founders.” The founder and core group of editors may be moving to another site, but the Wikia community will remain open and available for further editing. I understand why many of you would feel like one person can own a wikia, but this policy was in place before this community was created, so any sense of individual ownership was a misunderstanding of long-established Wikia policies.
Attempts to blank or delete pages will be reverted, and those who have removed the content will be blocked.
It’s no surprise that there are strong feelings about this situation, but it’s important to keep a cool head and focus on the future. We said this to Dycaite over email earlier today, but I felt it important to reiterate it here as well: I understand your frustration, and we’re not trying to say you can’t be frustrated. Forks are always frustrating - we don’t want you to leave, obviously, but we understand you’ve made that choice. Just remember that, like the Wiki Creation Policy says, Wikia is not a generic web hosting service, where you sign up for server space and own whatever you post. It’s based around community collaboration and, license-wise, Creative Commons. And it’s the job of Wikia to support Wikia communities, not non-Wikia communities.
That’s why we keep communities open after forks. It’s not about ads. To be honest, Lost Media Wiki isn't so big that we actually need or care that much about whatever limited amounts of revenue are going to come from it. It's about preserving it as a place where people can continue to contribute lost media information on Wikia.
I know that I probably won’t change any minds with that. That’s fine. At the very least, however, I’m hopeful that this explains our point of view to everyone, since we did not get a chance to fully do so before the situation escalated. If you have any questions, I’m happy to answer them.
I was typing and typing and typing, and it just deleted everything, thanks, Wikia!
Anyways, the gist of my post was not all that long, but too long to re-type. It didn't contain any cursing at you. It was my point of view, such as how you're stepping out of Wikia's ToS, removing our message about the Facebook page and the basic situation, even after you said we can direct people to a chat room or other page; there was absolutely no planning going on within the message board... I wanted to stay impartial as possible and out of it, unless needed - however now I see myself as needed.
I've had a long-ass day, and week, and past few months. It's hard for me to deal with school, work, and life, while handling this situation as well (for as little as I'm handling it). This wiki is significant to me, just like it is Dycaite and I'm sure many other people. Being told you don't own something that you've put countless hours and countless amounts of work into, regardless of the guidelines, is a kick in the balls. Maybe if more people understood that, then maybe more people would understand Dycaite's point of view.
Your standpoint, or Wikia's standpoint, has been clear, just as I'm sure ours has.
I mean, how is the community supposed to decide whether they want to stay or go from this wiki (even though it's technically a move but hey-ho, let's shit on peoples' belongings, legal or not), if we're not allowed to inform them of even the situation, or a place to go for news. Since we evidently cannot talk about it here. No need to punish everyone for a few's actions, you've already taken Dycaite's ownership and everything else away, as it is, so you've punished him. Why punish the rest for doing something completely within bounds?
You keep saying that your goal is "preserving [The Wiki] as a place where people can continue to contribute lost media information on Wikia" . That's the problem. On Wikia . You're perfectly happy with our userbase moving away so long as this website remains, and blinding whoever may come across it to the existance of another site. This is what we are objecting to.
The Lost Media Wiki is a living document, with hundreds of hours poured into it by a handfull of dedicated members. if we are going to leave and continue our work elsewhere, then we would like to continue to grow the community elsewhere.
What we want, is independence from your terms and conditions, and by censoring all documentation that several key members of the community are leaving, then you are unethicly restricting our freedom of expression.
The community wants to leave, please allow us a place to discuss it, without fear of an overbearing bureaucracy.
We are open to having a message about the community of editors moving, for a limited amount of time -- one month, as I stated before. I also stated (above) that this has to be earned.
The previous main page message contained several misstatements, such as:
"Wikia is trying to stop Dycaite from creating a separate site for LMW"
"Wikia's staff have chosen to tell Dycaite that he ... can't transfer any of the content to the new wiki."
"Upon Dycaite's disagreement with the decision, he was removed as admin"
While we would like the community to remain at Wikia, it's clear that we’re probably well past that possibility. However, we are not making any attempt to stop the creation of the new site, and that's not something we would or could do.
The only thing we’ve disallowed is removal of content from this wikia. The license certainly allows the content to be reproduced elsewhere, with proper attribution to the contributors. There are various ways to accomplish that and Dycaite (or anyone else) is free to do that.
Dycaite’s demotion is for removal of content, not for disagreement.
The main page is still editable by admins. When the time comes when the community of editors is ready to move efforts to the new site, one of the admins can put up a message on the main page. A format that would be permitted is something like "Please see [[here]] for important information about the future of Lost Media Wiki" with the link leading to a forum thread (or blog post or something along those lines) where more detail is given, and a link to the new site can be put there. What won’t be permitted is any kind of soft redirect (e.g. "We’ve moved, click here to go to the new site").
I said "When the time comes when the community of editors is ready to move efforts to the new site" -- it’s up to all of you when that is. The message can stay up for one month from the time it's posted. If the message doesn’t meet the requirements laid out above, we'll let you know.
As I said before, planning for the new site needs to take place elsewhere. It sounds like everyone is aware of the new site’s URL and I expect further links to planning locations can be put on that site's main page. If you’d like to reach out to specific people on their Message Walls here with a link, that’s also fine.
Hopefully this addresses the follow-up questions/issues that have been raised, please let me know if there are others.
A format that would be permitted is something like "Please see [[here]] for important information about the future of Lost Media Wiki" with the link leading to a forum thread (or blog post or something along those lines) where more detail is given, and a link to the new site can be put there. What won’t be permitted is any kind of soft redirect (e.g. "We’ve moved, click here to go to the new site").
How are new members, that're redirected here because Wikia's cut a deal with Google's AdSense and will remain on the top of any and all search results, supposed to know that the original community has moved? Why can't the creators of articles choose to remove them? Why did you remove the front page message that was - by the guidelines you just set forth, allowed - removed?
Glbracer wrote: How are new members, that're redirected here because Wikia's cut a deal with Google's AdSense and will remain on the top of any and all search results, supposed to know that the original community has moved?
Wikia's in the same boat as everyone else in terms of SEO and Google. Wikia communities' high ranking is the result of excellent content created by users across the entire network, over many years.
The notice that we'll allow for a month is a courtesy. A permanent notice would essentially be a soft redirect.
Why can't the creators of articles choose to remove them?
All of the content is published under the same license. Under normal circumstances, removal of articles is subject the approval of admins and the rest of the community. But under the current circumstances where there's a desire to remove content for other reasons, we'll revert any blanking or deletions.
Why did you remove the front page message that was - by the guidelines you just set forth, allowed - removed?
I removed it due to the misstatements I cited in my post from yesterday.
On a serious note though, I do appreciate being unblocked and having my admin rights restored, so thank you Bert/Brandon. I want to stress again to everyone not to exacerbate the situation; like I said in my forum post, we need to combat this with positivity, not negativity and the way to do that is to make the new LMW as good as it possibly can be. Fighting with Wikia's staff members is not going to do anyone any good, I now realise that. I have made peace with the situation and am now working hard at getting the new site ready.
I'll continue keeping an eye on lostmedia.wikia.com, though you probably won't see me around as often as you normally would. Planning for the new site is taking place on the new forum (link available via the new site, which I'm sure you all know the URL to by now); if you wanna jump on board, head over there and create an account.