Rational Wiki recently had a formal hearing to consider what to do about a user called ‘Ukuphendukela’ (archive here). The user is controversial because they admit to being a paedophile and a hebephile (attracted to very young, and pubescent, children) and because they initially had a different name, ‘Shouniaisha’, which is alleged to have paedophile connotations. Ukuphendukela previously posted links to a pro-paedophile website on Rational Wiki (they deleted it but the archive of his comment and link is here). Rational Wiki’s response? Ban the satirist, Michaeldsuarez, who complained.
‘Rational’ Wiki (RW) continues to prove it is anything but. After the recent resignation of moderator ‘Gooniepunk’ in humiliation, banning and recriminations continue. RW’s equivalent of Wikipedia’s ArbCom is the ‘Chicken Coop’, a name that just oozes rationality.
RW’s moderators have now decided to continue their lemming-like tradition of picking fights with more powerful opponents by taking on Encyclopaedia Dramatica (ED). For those unfamiliar with the site, ED is a satirical website that covers online drama. To quote from the Wikipedia article, Journalist Julian Dibbell described Encyclopædia Dramatica as the site, “where the vast parallel universe of Anonymous in-jokes, catchphrases, and obsessions is lovingly annotated […]””.
Encyclopaedia Dramatica is known and feared for its ability to source allegations in forensic detail as well as its ability to uncover the darkest secrets of its subjects. ED has been an invaluable source for journalists covering Wikipedia and the controversy around Sarah Nyberg.
Although it has sometimes been criticised for releasing personal information and non-politically-correct content, ED has been exposing the guilty since 2004. A slightly off-putting aspect of the site is that it is funded by advertising, including legal but graphic adult pornography. ED also sometimes exposes rough edges by (for example) linking unnecessarily to private information. All of that said, ED is a respected and legitimate satirical website.
On 18/01/2016 RW decided to ban editor and RW administrator Michaeldsuarez after deliberations at the ‘Chicken Coop’ here, (archive here). The grounds are no more than he criticised RW, wrote criticisms on ED and complained about Ukuphendukela.
Suarez’ complaints are legitimate – Ukuphendukela, under his former name of ‘Shouniaisha’ (see his talk page, archive here), had posted links to a defunct paedophile website called Newgon.com. The author has not visited Newgon but Ukuphendukela said that the site contained, “[…] resources regarding both boys and girls […]”. Anti-paedophile watchdog groups confirm it was a pro-paedophile website.
Suarez had also complained of Ukuphendukela’s original name, ‘Shouniaisha’, which he believes is Japanese for ‘paedophile’. I consider this nearly moot as the user Ukuphendukela has repeatedly admitted to being a paedophile and being attracted to really young children.
I am also not so sure about Suarez’ translation. When I ran the word through Google Translate it came out as, “After you Aisha s”, which appears to be a reference to Muhammad’s wife of the same name. The user appears to have been equating the prophet of Islam with paedophiles.
Regardless of whether Ukuphendukela’s original name was intended as paedophile or Islamaphobic bigotry (or both), it is clear he has posted links to a pro-paedophile website on RW.
Even if the nearly content free allegations against Michaeldsuarez were true and he was a nightmarish troll, Ukuphendukela’s actions are far worse. However, the Chicken Coop case expressly considered the paedophile’s fate and allowed Ukuphendukela to stay. On 19/01/2016 at 05:13 AM RW moderator FuzzyCatPotato closed the case, saying, “Archived. We will not be lynching anyone on circumstantial evidence today” (archive here).
Circumstantial evidence? CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE??? Ukuphendukela admits to being a paedophile and was logged posting links to a paedophile website. Meanwhile over on the Chicken Coop talk page (archive here), users debate the possibility of reopening the case to ban the paedophile, but the moderator Weaseloid, who proposed banning Suarez, said this – “[…] I’ve no desire to push the issue myself”.
Despite the misery and fear their unwise actions have brought them, the ever shrinking RW community seems intent on pitching its tent on the hill of ‘paedophile rights’.
It is entirely predictable that the real world identities of RW’s users will continue to be exposed. This is legitimate journalism, and / or satire. Sadly some more extreme individuals are likely to go further – perhaps passing RW editors’ names and addresses to vigilante groups. Your author would never condone the latter course and urges readers not to take the law into their own hands. However the outcome is still eminently predictable. Weaseloid and David Gerard, in particular, best be careful about their online security.
Despite having previously had their real world identities exposed by journalists, trolling groups and vigilantes, RW continues to behave irrationally.