SmashWiki:Requests for adminship/Black Vulpine

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Black Vulpine (talkcontribsedit countRFA page)[edit]

Candidate, please summarize why you are running for adminship below.
So, I've been here, what, eight months now? When I first came here, I didn't even know how a wiki worked, but I came here, was welcomed warmly, and I worked hard to learn the ropes, and how to interact with everyone, new and old. About a month later, I was granted the power of rollback, enabling me to combat vandalism, and still, I wanted to be able to do more for this wiki.

I know there's more to being a sysop than just countering vandalism and blocking people where necessary. Here's what I know of the other main responsibilities of being a sysop, and are confident I have:

  • Assuming good faith where there is even a tiny shred of doubt
  • Being able to confer with other team members and reach consensus
  • Have a solid understanding of policies, especially on article deletion and protection
  • An ability and willingness to learn from new policies, as well as mistakes that are made
  • Understanding that administrators are not kings, everyone is equal, and we must not 'boss' others

On top of this, here's also what I know a sysop is responsible for, but for which I need more confidence in:

  • Have good social skills, welcoming new users and helping them where necessary
  • Have a solid understanding on the policies of blocking users and conflict moderation
    • Expanding on this, being able to make unbiased decisions on conflicts where other users are not able to

I know that the situations admins face are vast and varied, so let me talk about some common situations, and detail what my mentality will likely be for each of them:

Blocking

What I understand this is: Perhaps the most important part of being an admin, and one of if not the most complex. The ability to determine whether a user should be edit-blocked, and how long for. Note: All examples provided here assume the edit is on a mainspace or talk page.

  • A user makes an edit that seriously breaks a page, but there's a chance it may have been good faith
    Action: Revert but do not block. Depending on the severity of the damage, I may talk to the user in question, but if there is even the tiniest chance the edit was good faith, no block will ever be handed down without conferring with other admins.
  • A user replaces all the text on a page with something of their own
    Action: Block. How long will depend on how venomous the content was. Anything like 'lol' or 'this fucking sucks' will probably only be a slap on the wrist block (1 week or less), but anything more than that will result in a longer block. Anything that's a major personal attack or a clear attempt to troll like this was could result in a permanent block, and more than likely will if it's determined that it was an account created just for abuse. If the offender is an IP, I'd only go up to 2 weeks, given that perma-blocking IPs should be avoided. For anything that's not cut-and-dry (and for me, that would probably be anything that isn't clear vandalism), I will want to seek advice from the seniority.
  • A user personally attacks another user
    Action: Caution them. Remind them of the policy and warn them not to do it again. If the offence is serious, an immediate short block may be warranted... but until I gain more confidence in this area, I probably would confer with other admins regarding that.
  • A user creates an account with an inappropriate name
    Action: For anything offensive or using non-Roman characters, block immediately and post the talk page advice as shown here (I don't really know what to call it :P). For anything that's jumbled nonsense, confer with other admins.
  • An account or IP may be a sockpuppet
    Action: Check it if suspicious, perma-block if confirmed. If account to be blocked is an IP, block for 2 weeks unless advised otherwise by seniority. If checkuser fails but the suspicion remains, I will confer (noticing a pattern here?). I will also confer if a confirmed sockpuppet has good faith history, and probably also question the user on their talk page, but no block will be given, at least not straight away.

Conflict moderation

What I understand this is: The ability to come between other users, preventing edit warring and arguments from occurring through means of diplomacy and tact. My confidence in this area is very low, and will probably only be most often employed at times where an admin's 'deciding vote' is required.

  • Can argue well without getting upset
    In some cases, yes, and in others, no. I would say I could handle the most basic situations, but given that's a point of view, I'm not sure I can even provide examples to explain myself here.
  • Can be trusted to resolve hostile situations
    Probably not. That said, most of us, myself included, can often rely on simply saying something along the lines of, "Let's all just stop and be adults about this," which in many cases is all it takes to help bring the flames down.
  • Can recognise when I'm getting emotional, and need to back off
    I think so. I can be emotional at times, but I feel reasonably confident that if I'm starting to get upset, I can recognise it and at least attempt to walk away. The occasions where I would not be able to walk away are very rare, and in those cases, I would try to express how I feel, in attempt to defuse the situation. At the same time, I'll try to get another admin to jump in and help.

Policies

What I understand this is: The ability to enforce policies of the Wiki, both written and unwritten.

  • Has tried to help with enforcement of policy before
    Plenty of times. Most of my recent talk page posts have been poking others about policies.
  • Follows policies myself
    Absolutely, or at least to the best of my ability. I had a problem with 1RV in my early days here, but it's a problem I have never repeated, at least not to that level.

Helpfulness and social skills

What I understand this is: The ability to interact with other users, especially the new ones, and orient them with the ways of the wiki.

  • A new user is having trouble with applying the correct formatting
    Action: Show them what they should do, or correct them. If it's the latter, I'll leave a talk page message pointing out what I've done.
  • A new user isn't following policy
    Action: I'll (try to) gently remind them about the policy they're not following. If the problem continues, I'll discuss it with other admins.
  • A new user is making some very high-quality edits that are really standing out
    Action: Commend them! Hard work should be rewarded with at least a word of thanks.

Ability to work with other admins

What I understand this is: Being able to confer with and respect the decisions of other admins.

  • Will agree with other admins' decisions
    I'd be lying if I said I would agree 100% of the time. Most of the time I will agree. On the rare occasions I do not, I will discuss and ask questions calmly, rather than fight about it or worse, overturn the decision myself. There will be no exceptions to this - even in situations where I feel I am definitely right, I will talk first.
  • Will confer with other admins where a solution to a problem is unclear
    I've touched on this many times already. There's a reason the administration isn't just one person. It's a team, and as such must be treated so. I will need to ask questions, and there may even be times when questions will be asked of me. Some of you will have heard me say this before, but my mentality is to think, then act. Don't act, then think.

Availability

What I understand this is: How and when I will be available to the wiki.

  • When I will be available
    I'm available almost every day. Because I'm from Australia, I'm usually around in the evening and across midnight as well.

While there's some gaps in my abilities, I ultimately feel like I'm ready to take on the greater challenges. It was after all Serpent King and Disaster Flare who taught me everything I know, and I know they have more to teach me as well. Whether this RfA passes or not, I will strive to take on board whatever I possibly can, whether from those two amazing guys or from you, the community. So, if you have anything to say about how I should improve, please do not hold back. Thank you! Black Vulpine of the Furry Nation wishes you a happy new year! 17:20, 31 December 2017 (EST)

Support[edit]

  1. 76.84.39.34 23:44, 6 January 2018 (EST)
    I get that this is an anonymous user who doesn’t necessarily know how things work here, but I would rather people did NOT mindlessly support me on this RfA. Whether you’re for or against me becoming an admin, a reason why you think so should be provided. Black Vulpine of the Furry Nation. Furries make the internets go! :3 01:12, 7 January 2018 (EST)

Oppose[edit]

  1. Ok so here it is. I'm going to try to word myself very carefully here, because I don't want this to come out the wrong way. First let me start by saying, I firmly believe that you will make a great admin one day, and I look forward to that day when it comes, however I just don't think that day is coming so soon. Here are some of the problems I have with you being promoted at this time:
    • You are still fairly new to the wiki. As you stated above, you have only been here for around 8 months, which really isn't as long as it seems, considering how long it takes some admins to get promoted. I am well aware that there is no policy or guideline regarding a minimum amount of time that one must be a user on this wiki for before they should apply for adminship, but I think that it is nevertheless important, particularly since you stated that when you first joined, you were new to wikis. While I agree with you that you have learned a lot in the time you have been here, I am highly skeptical that you are at the necessary level to be an admin at this time.
    • Your temper. You were probably expecting me to mention this one, but your temper is something that concerns me. On multiple occasions on the Discord, you have gotten angry, even after being promoted to chat op, and were even given a warning from Serpent King recently to not let this go to far. I understand that some of this may be played up for humour, but nevertheless the prospect of someone with the tremendous power that an admin has potentially having a short fuse concerns me, as it may cause you to act a little too harshly or rashly at times, which could cause issues. Obviously this is something that you can learn not to do, but as of now, it is evident you have not fully mastered it yet.
    • Your attitude, and the example you set. Ok this has to be fair gotten a lot better recently, but even now, I am occasionally seeing instances of this, most notably on the Discord and when warning/messaging good faith editors who made mistakes. Admins are supposed to be approachable and friendly towards regular editors, and when dealing with good faith edits that are problematic, they should never be intimidating right off the bat. This is a minor pet peeve I have with Serpent King's talk page messages too, but you just generally can come off as intimidating on the wiki. As for on the Discord, like I mentioned before you have a habit of losing your temper and raging about things that happen to you of For Glory, getting rather aggressive and borderline rude at times. At first this may not seem like an issue since it is on the Discord, but if you look deeper there are some issues with this. When you are promoted to admin, you become an admin on the Discord too, and when this happens, all the other users of the server, including potential future editors, will look up to you. Your behaviour will reflect on the wiki and our admin team strongly. With this in mind, your raging on the Discord absolutely has to stop if you are to be promoted. Calling players derogatory terms and insulting entire groups of mains on a regular basis is not a good look for an admin.
    One last minor point: your recent incident with the user "J itsawonderfulworld" could border on assuming bad faith. I'm not hugely concerned about this, but it is an incredibly recent incident, so I thought I'd mention it.
    Right, let me just finish by saying this: I've been reading a lot of failed RfAs recently, and I would like to tell you to not get discouraged should you not get promoted this time around. Remember that Disaster Flare, Serpent King and Toomai all have a failed RfA under their belt, and they are currently perhaps the most respected admins on the wiki. I have no doubt that you will some day become an admin, so should this RfA fail, please don't kick yourself about it or get discouraged in any way.
    That is all. Alex Parpotta the flying lobster! 17:56, 31 December 2017 (EST)
    To address some complaints I have been seeing about my first point, I would like to elaborate more: I don't really feel as though I've fully seen enough evidence that Vulpine is completely ready to be promoted to adminship, and the duration thing is more of a cause, rather than the issue itself. I have seen some evidence of him being ready for promotion, but if he were promoted at this point, I just wouldn't feel as though I could rely on him as an admin from what I've seen thus far. Furthermore it seems as though Black Vulpine himself still somewhat lacks confidence in his judgement, as I have seen on multiple occasions that he can sometimes be unsure about what should be done in a situation, and this would be a concerning issue if he were to be promoted.Alex Parpotta the flying lobster! 11:43, 1 January 2018 (EST)
  2. Oppose. While I appreciate your honesty in the "conflict moderation" section of your RfA, it more or less reads to me as an admission that you're not ready for the job. If you're "probably not" reliable "to resolve hostile situations" (your words, not mine), then that should answer the question of the RfA by itself. One of the most difficult lessons I have learned as a wiki admin is that there are often times where multiple, good-faith users are disagreeing and things get heated and angry, and somebody has to try to resolve it. It's even harder when you yourself are one of those in disagreement. Remaining level-headed when the situation is frustrating or anger-inducing is utterly essential, and I have plenty of experience with how difficult doing so can be. By my judgment, knowing how to de-escalate a situation is much more important as a wiki admin than your competence at janitorial work or rote knowledge of policy. If you aren't prepared for that, then you should try again when you are. Miles (talk) 18:14, 1 January 2018 (EST)
  3. Oppose for two major reasons. First off, as Miles said, you don't seem to be very good at conflict moderation, asyou stated. Secondly, there is simply no need for a new admin. Work of the most you seem to specialize in is janitorial, and our current seem to have no holes in this area. Our admins are almost always here, and you really don't seem to provide much else in your RfA. --Penro 19:08, 1 January 2018 (EST)
    It seems that every time we go through one of these, one of the arguments is either that we really need new staff members or that we don't. The decision for these is to be made purely on the abilities of the runner, not on the status of the wiki. Serpent SKSig.png King 19:28, 1 January 2018 (EST)
  4. Regretful oppose I consider myself a pretty good judge of character, and my read on you is that you would be helpful as an administrator, but that you may allow your emotions leak through and ultimately prevent you from doing the right thing or getting the job done. I would like to make a few points:
    • Conflict moderation is probably both the single most important and hardest part of the job. If you yourself are not confident in your ability to settle disputes peacefully, then you're not right for the job, at least not yet.
    • You've had some extremely concerning behavioral quirks in the past (and even recently) that make it difficult to fully trust you. In particular, the tone with which you attempt to handle some situations is far too blunt. When you are trying to settle someone down, you need to be both polite and firm...and sometimes you come off arrogant and cold instead.
    • You are sometimes too quick to assume bad faith. I think you've gotten better about this recently, but I feel like I am reminding you that certain edits could have been made in good faith far more often than I should.
    • I have to agree with Alex above that you sometimes let your temper run unchecked. Let me be very clear: the job of an admin can be extremely aggravating and at times even rage inducing. An admin has to be able to stomach this and continue to make rational decisions under these pressures.
    • It's not inherently a bad thing to seek advice from other admins, and we are all willing to help, but it does seem that virtually every other point in this RfA seems to boil down to "I'll take care of it unless I don't know how, and then I'll get someone else in on it". It comes off as a lack of confidence which I do not want to see in a member of our staff.
    • A minor point, but using checkuser every single time you have so much as an inkling that two accounts have the same driver is probably not good practice. It can be seen as an invasion of privacy because you can discern their location from that.
    So all in all, I feel that you are an excellent contributor and one day a decent enough admin, but I honestly feel that you have too much to work on here for you to take the job just yet. Serpent SKSig.png King 19:24, 1 January 2018 (EST)
  5. Honestly, I had the exact same things in mind that Serpent did, so I have nothing of value to contribute here, so I'm just going to say oppose. Like Serpent, I do believe you can be a good admin one day, but today is not that day. Disaster Flare Disaster Flare signature image.png (talk) 14:06, 2 January 2018 (EST)
  6. See, this is why I don't run a request for adminship. I sometimes feel like I'm ready, yet at the end of the day, I am not. That's all I've got to say since everybody already talked about your flaws. Nothing personal, mate. --BeepYouSignature.png Beep (talk) 03:12, 7 January 2018 (EST)

Neutral[edit]

  1. I will say that, while I have generally seen good from you, Alex does bring up valid points. It's nothing personal, but it definitely doesn't mean I particularly sway one way or the other. Aidan, the Celebratory Rurouni 19:38, 31 December 2017 (EST)
  2. Per Aidan's reasoning. Area51Guard.png A51 Trooper 14:45, 1 January 2018 (EST)
  3. Neutral leaning towards oppose. You seem to be generally well-prepared for most of the duties of an admin, but the big one IMO - conflict resolution - you admit yourself to have issues with, and your attitude is somewhat iffy. Nothing that would make you detrimental, and I believe you would be competent, but the concerns in the back of my head are too big to support you at all. Nyargleblargle.pngNyargleblargle (Contribs) 00:13, 2 January 2018 (EST)

Comments[edit]

I'd like for you to give at least a few examples to back up 2 of your claims

  1. Being able to confer with other team members and reach consensus
  2. An ability and willingness to learn from [...] mistakes that are made

Serpent SKSig.png King 17:57, 31 December 2017 (EST)

In regards to these:
  1. I'm sure you yourself are aware of this one - I will often go to you and others on the Discord when I have questions. That may have been partly a mistake, because I have almost nothing HERE to show. Here's what I came up with though for conference: (1) (2) (3) (this one's early days, and is probably more light banter than serious debate, but I thought I should include it too)
  2. I wasn't looking forward to this part. But the big one definitely has to be the massive edit war I committed to over Ness's Melee page, the PSI Magnet page, and the Absorption page, against user JiffyD back in April. It's definitely my worst moment ever because in the one day, I broke 1RV, NPA, and TALK. It may be one of my earliest days on this Wiki, but I never did live it down. It's a mistake I've never repeated. Black Vulpine of the Furry Nation wishes you a happy new year! 18:36, 31 December 2017 (EST)
  1. I'll concede the discord thing given that you have show sufficient ability to work with others on there, but the examples you've given seem weak at best.
  2. That's sufficient for me.

I am going to simply watch this unfold for a while before I give any additional input. I am not ignoring this, but I want to see how this plays out. Serpent SKSig.png King 19:23, 31 December 2017 (EST)

I just thought of another example of conferring with an admin towards consensus: this admin report. Nyargleblargle had mistakenly seen the IP I was reporting as good faith, resulting in a very brief back-and-forth between us to prove otherwise. This is also the only other wiki-based instance of conferring and concession that I have and feel is worth putting here. Black Vulpine of the Furry Nation wishes you a happy new year! 22:06, 31 December 2017 (EST)

I don't think I'm going to learn much more from this RfA. What I'll now need to do is take everything everyone's said, determine what's most important, and spend the coming months working on sharpening the skills that I need to improve on. I, as well as the administration, wish that more people voted on this, but I feel I can draw some pretty powerful conclusions based on the votes of key users in this RfA. Therefore, I have decided to stand down and withdraw. Thanks to all who voted! Black Vulpine of the Furry Nation. Furries make the internets go! :3 06:11, 13 January 2018 (EST)