1. Tuesday, December 5, 2006

    Hi, Tony. 

    I have weighed in at Wikipedia with my “delete” vote (although it isn’t a vote). I have no agenda. I’m not a member of the GNAA or, in fact, any other group. I saw your post on MeFi before it was deleted and agreed that you are, in an encyclopedic sense, non-notable, despite your niche popularity. My instinct is that there may be twenty or thirty notable bloggers: Kottke, Jardin, Wheaton, etc. I don’t think you’re one of them.

    While this may have started as a trollish campaign, it has evolved into a serious discussion and will, I hope, serve as a benchmark for notability on Wikipedia.
    tfg | 12.05.06 – 1:29 pm | #


    i appreciate your comment and your point of view. i have great respect for Wikipedia and appreciate the self-editing that happens there. of 54 million blogs i think that there are definitely more than 20-30 notable bloggers. whether i am one of those is an interesting debate that i wish i wasn’t part of because any argument that i have will come across as self-serving and biased. i wish it was about someone else who isnt in the Technorati Top 100, but like me, in the Technorati Top 500 and less of a no-brainer.

    it’s the cases that aren’t slam-dunks that are of interest to me.

    although i started the thread in Metafilter to have the MeFiers debate the practice of Wikipedia deleting lesser-known bands and non Top 20 bloggers, i felt that it would be disingenuous of me not to mention how i came across the article or what was happening to me.

    As a member of MeFi since 9/2001 i thought i understood the rule of self-linking to only apply to link to ones blog or ones website, but clearly i was wrong.

    i will have to politely disagree with you that the new discussion has turned into “a serious discussion” and i truly hope that it will not “serve as a benchmark for notability on Wikipedia” for several reasons

    1. the entry is so incomplete that its tantamount to a strawman. the points that i raised in the original thread are nowhere in my current entry, the newspaper articles mentioned by someone else where i appear are nowhere in my current entry, nor is my ranking in Technorati or most of the other things that ive accomplished in blogging, including becoming a professional blogger.

    2. both discussion threads include slams against me that are either unfair because they say things like “so what that he was on G4TV, if thats his only claim to fame then everyone who gets on tv should be here,” or totally irrelevant or untrue like “the self-professed Blogfather has never held a job for more than a year”. if your hope is like mine and you want a serious discussion about the entry about me the debate should be about things that are relevant: my blogging career, my achievements, what other major bloggers have said to me like Doc Searls calling me the best blogger ever, and all of the publications that have mentioned me in praise as a blogger – this year the LA Weekly for example had me as one of the most interesting 100 LA people, etc.

    3. if you want a serious discussion, you cant have people like timecop as part of the process since he goes against the Wikipedia goal of Neutrality. anyone with an agenda to rid Wikipedia of entries about bloggers is clearly biased and although their opinions are interesting, they’re clearly not Neutral and shouldn’t be in the discussion.

    4. to prevent new editors from the discussion or the subject himself is blatantly unfair, foolish and exclusionary. as is trying to use the fact that a blogger would *gasp* blog about it, against him.

    my advice is to allow the subject to be part of the process in creating or editing the entry, and then debate on whether it stands up to the test. likewise, have a good test. clearly bloggers are a different animal than a journalist or a tv host. some of us are notable without having superhuge audiences simply because we’re not interested in doing the things necessary to get those types of audiences: writing about politics, showing boobies, intentionally trying to be controversial.

    the fact that i have permalinks on far right sites like Instapundit, LGF, and Baldilocks as well as regular mentions on far left sites like Matthew Good’s ultra liberal site, as well as permalinks on gossip blogs like Don’t Link This and CityRags, as well as hundreds of “normal people blogs” is something that you don’t see on your typical Top 500 blog.

    but if my blog and my blogging career is going to be judged on the few paragraphs currently on Wikipedia, an entry that im not invited to edit, is a strawman and an unfair test.

    either way, the people who associate themselves with the GNAA cant be good for Wikipedia and their inclusion in this debate hurts Wikipedia far more than it hurts someone like me.

    but once again, i appreciate the rational comment that you left and i appreciate your point of view on this matter.