Going dark on a topic

I have been documenting the Anglo Pyramidologist sock puppetry and massive disruption. Because of what I have found, and the tasks before me over the next year, I am going dark. All pages in the category of Anglo Pyramidologist will be hidden, pending, and possibly some others. Some have been archived (often on archive.is) and will remain available there. If anyone has a need-to-know, or wants to support the work, contact me (comments on this post will be seen by me, and if privacy is requested, that will be honored, the comments will not be published. Provide me with an email and a request for contact and I will do so.)

The connection with cold fusion is thin, but exists and is significant.

Warning: documenting AP can be hazardous to your health.

As well, the next year’s journalism will need support, some of this may become expensive. I will be asking for support, to supplement what is already available or in the pipeline.

Sometimes reality comes to our door and knocks. Do we invite her in? Other times we need to search for her. Ask and you shall receive. She is kind and generous.

Don’t ask, and reality might seem to punch you in the nose, and you might be offended. In reality, you just walked into a lamp post. Who knew?

Summary:

The sock family known on Wikipedia as Anglo Pyramidologist is two brothers, Oliver D. Smith (the original Anglo Pyramidologist) and Darryl L. Smith, perhaps best known as Goblin Face, who continues to be highly active with the “skeptic faction” on Wikipedia. It is possible that there is a third brother involved.

They have engaged in impersonation socking, disrupting Wikipedia while pretending to be a blocked user, leading to defamation of the target user, and they have engaged in similar behavior elsewhere.

I was attacked for documenting the proven impersonation and other socking. My behaviot did not violate any policies or the Terms of Service,

The Smith brothers were able to coordinate or canvass for multiple complaints, (they have bragged about complaining) and it is possible that this led to the WikiMedia Foundation global ban, but those bans are not explained and the banned user is not warned, and has no opportunity to appeal or contest them.

Substantial damage was done to the long-standing tradition of academic freedom on Wikiversity.

Action to remedy this will continue, but privately.

Protected: IP study

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Anglo Pyramidologist

I will be reporting newer activity on this page: wikipedia/anglo-pyramidologist/new/

UNDER MAJOR REVISION

This study of the massive socking called “Anglo Pyramidologist” was originally on the meta wiki, the first study having been moved from wikiversity to avoid disruption, as the file User:Abd/LTA/Anglo Pyramidologist, but was deleted there for mysterious reasons, given that it was the source, the evidence, for a list of socks that was allowed by the same steward. That page was ported here from an archive of the meta page and I am removing all the chatty discussion of why I started the study, etc., the page before such stripping can be read at http://archive.is/iJ1SI

When hosted on meta,  I attempted to comply with WMF privacy policy, and some material was not disclosed there, that is disclosed here, where there is no such restriction. This user is the most disruptive and libelous I have ever seen, and does not deserve protection, and those who are protecting him (and there are some), are taking a side against decency, not to mention WMF neutrality policy.

Subpages:

  • MrRowser deserves a special honor being at this point the most recent identified AP sock to edit using his account. (Identified by the duck test.)  There are other new IP accounts listed.
 There are indications that AP is more than one person, twin brothers are often mentioned on other sites (Oliver D. Smith and Darryl L. Smith) and there may be a third brother or a sister (HealthyGirl?). Behavioral differences may be seen.
Recently (April 7 2018) Oliver D. Smith claimed he had been lying since 2011, that there is no brother, he made up the story to get unblocked. However, in many other places, Oliver Smith  claimed that most socking had been his brother, (example) and there are at least two apparent personalities (sets of interests) involved. (In fact, it’s clear there is a brother, but the issue would be who did all the socking, including impersonations and other major disruption…. He is really saying it was all him, and that his brother is “innocent.”)
Complicating matters is that, as Anglo Pyramidologist is known to impersonate enemies in order to bring down  the thunder on them, it is possible that he has also been impersonated. He has not complained about this, as far as I know, with specifics in any context where claims could be verified. It has not been investigated using checkuser or similar tools, to my knowledge. I am finding, for sure, strong signs that almost all of the activity is coming from one location in England, where IP can be identified (the user often uses open proxies, but not always).
This will be covered in the IP section.
On Wikipedia, though, all the accounts are classified as Anglo Pyramidologist, they don’t really care if it is one or two people, if they behaviorally match one of the tagged accounts, and/or are confirmed by checkuser (which can fail to distinguish between people using the same internet access).
I was banned by the WMF, reasons not explained, and will be pursuing recourse on that. What is known is that there were complaints, and the documentation of the AP socks figured prominently; Oliver Smith, in particular, published, on RationalWiki, the WMF response to his complaint. He was quite proud of it.
Contents

Disclaimers

Inclusion of an account here is not a claim that identification is correct, only that it — or suspicion — can be documented in some way. If a claim is included that is not documented, correction is invited.
The recent activity has been through SPAs, which register and dive immediately into high conflict discussions, these are easily recognized. Most recently, open proxies and then mobile phone IP addresses have been used
You can delete this message if you like. Just to let you know I will not be further engaging you. It seems you live for this drama, I will not longer be involved. I will do my best behind the scenes via email to get admins to delete all your material.
He meant it, and he has done just that, but was lying when he said he would not be involved. He continued to create sock puppets — or to create disruption with open proxies and then mobile IP>
If you want to spend the rest of your life stalking someone that is up to you, but it is not healthy.
On his favorite web site, RationalWiki, that is called “concern trolling.” The sock master has obviously been stalking Ben Steigmann, then me, and many others.
I object to such a thing. I am done with this.
Excellent, but he just contradicted that with a threat of endless effort.

I would like to add though that AngloPyramidologist is innocent. If you want the debunker of parapsychology/or pseudoscience it is me.

This would be, I tentatively assume, Darryl Smith, whereas AP was Oliver Smith. I don’t really care. Both were disruptive and the checkuser evidence does not distinguish. There does appear to be crossover, i.e., some shared interests. If the original AP is inactive, good for him, but the other brother, then has also taken on some of his brother’s interests, because the original patterns still show up.

I have debated Ben in the past, he knows who I am, I have talked to him on Wikipedia in 2014. I have nothing against Ben personally, unfortunately he uses Wikipedia to promote his fringe beliefs, he promised in 2014 not to come back but his mistake was coming back in 2017.

Obsession with Ben Steigmann is an AP trait.

Take care. Btw I do object to the ‘troll’ allegations. I have written over 250 articles on Wikipedia. As to this very day 30/9/2017 I have four Wikipedia accounts and 12 others I occasionally use, the admins are only interested in banning vandals.

Most of the provocative posts this user made were trolling, poking, attempting to find some vulnerability that could be exploited. On Wikipedia, this user, perhaps hiding his true mission, would poke and provoke until a naive user explodes … and then he can get the person blocked for incivility. There is a trail of wreckage, if one were to look back.

If you are atheist, pro-skeptic like me and debunking fringe beliefs the admins love us.

If admins love this, they have lost the core of Wikipedia, NPOV, in favor of something they like personally. I could think of a couple who might, but most would recoil in horror, and the SPOV faction has lost every time the issue comes to serious community attention.

I can’t go wrong. I was even offered paid work from the owner of a skeptic group.

There are possible connections between AP, the faction mentioned, and a well-known “skeptic group,” but others are working on that aspect of this. I’m not, at this point. That is, I think this may be true, and I may know who that “owner” is. However, I also know that it is possible that some enemy of those people is pretending to be their friend, here.

 

I still create articles perhaps 12 or so a week. I have serious knowledge and I have improved the Wikipedia in skeptical related articles in relation to fringe beliefs.

I have found some recent activity, but I have not begun systematic study. Now, if this is true, why would he tell me? Indications are that this person is mid-twenties, and is obviously arrogant. He is likely unaware of all the ways that activity can be studied, that socks can be identified. He may imagine that certain defenses are impregnable. Truth, however, tends to out. If he stops attempting to disrupt Wikiversity, and to attack me, maybe I’ll never get to it. He’s been quiet for a day now. I’ve been warned that these people never give up, so we’ll see.

Your statement we are all vandals or doing illegal activity is false.

First of all, there may only be one of him. Secondly, impersonation with intention to defame is a crime almost everywhere.

This is common in his arguments, they misrepresent what has been said. It has not been claimed that the accounts or IPs are “all vandals or doing illegal activity.”

Take care and Good bye. My advise for you would be to give up. You are fighting a war you cannot win.

I’ve already won, thanks to reality. Survival is a game that we always lose, eventually, if that’s the game we play and the war we fight. However, at my age, every day that I’m still alive is a victory, and the mystery is how many more I have left to win.

You will never work out who I am or get rid of me from Wikipedia.

Leon. From a tower (talk) 01:24, 30 September 2017 (UTC) [this section has a link to the edit in the heading]

Relying on sources I consider reasonably reliable, I have some developed opinions as to personal identity, I’ve mentioned that. This would be AP/D, probably. It doesn’t matter. I’m unlikely to sue, because I have not been damaged. Some, however, might.

If Wikipedia is infested with him, that’s their problem, not mine. No critical interest of mine depends on Wikipedia at all. Nor, in fact, on Wikiversity or any WMF wiki. There are sincere people there, working for the goal of a user-created encyclopedia based on neutral presentation of what is in reliable sources, and that goal is damaged by those who work to selectively exclude some point of view or position, rather than channelling these into collaborative work. Wikiversity, not having limited space for specific topics, is not normally afflicted by factional wars, AP/D attempted to take such conflict there. He failed, because I recognized what had happened and addressed it.

(However, the last attack, by IP, including canvassing on Wikipedia, drawing in his faction, the one that he claims “loves him.” And something was indeed going on behind the scene, because admin response on Wikiversity (1) completely ignored the previous history and obvious personal attacks, and (2) served the AP agenda.  The effect of that is to demonstrate conclusively to me that Wikiversity is not safe, so, unless something drastically shifts, bye bye Wikiversity!

I will continue to document what has happened and is happening. I’m not dead yet.

 SPI investigation archive for Anglo Pyramidologist

roughly 190 socks on Wikipedia, plus IP
11 April 2011

15 June 2011

28 November 2011
13 December 2011
above confirmed mutual.
21 September 2011
27 September 2011
03 October 2011
03 October 2011, take 2
05 October 2011
IP check declined for privacy reasons. There was “other behavior” which the checkuser declined to disclose. I have a suspicion of off-wiki coordinated editing, and the checkuser may have detected actual sock accounts and left them alone. I may look more closely at this later. These are all Verizon wireless. So why doesn’t the account register, if they want to edit that much? Likely reason: they don’t want to be identified. Wikipedia went overboard in privacy protection. Privacy is important, but … sometimes there are higher values. I don’t know if that applies here, yet.
It appears that IPs were blocked. These IPs don’t look like AP, but … open proxies or something else.
02 November 2011
all confirmed. match to BookWorm44.
13 June 2012
claimed to be w:User:Earthisalive
Quack. Previously blocked as User:Earthisalive, now returning as User:The earth has a mind, First edit is to recreate European origin of modern humans as Out of Europe theory. Check user requested to check for sleepers. SummerPhD (talk) 23:35, 14 June 2012 (UTC)
Follow-up. Mentions a series of articles deleted, that lead to RationalWiki articles and more possible socks there. AP has been claiming that he has created many Wikipedia articles and RationalWiki articles. Yes, he has. Often very disruptive articles, the cloaca of RationalWiki. See the tip of the iceberg in the RationalWiki/Anglo Pyramidologist study. 
29 September 2012

From a combination of the duck test (which I have not confirmed (but the account names!!!), I have not yet studied these account activities) and the checkuser confirmations, I suspect that AP may have been using some kind of open proxy then, though that also seems unlikely.

11 November 2012
24 December 2014
10 June 2015
all confirmed

17 January 2016

At this point investigations were moved to Anglo Pyramidologist

29 March 2016

all confirmed. Again, Anglo Pyramidologist asserted as master.

08 August 2016

all confirmed.

28 September 2016

21_January_2018

Storyfellow’s name is probably a take-off on Philosophyfellow, a tumbleman sock. Storyfellow apparently created a Wikipedia  article on Emil Kirkegaard, a favorite AP target, see the RationalWiki study, and see the Wikipedia Articles for deletion discussion. Rebecca Bird showed up to support Storyfellow. See the discussion on Wikipedia:Fringe Theories Noticeboard, a favorite place for AP socks to solicit help. This sequence shows the techniques AP uses to make it appear that he is multiple editors. Rebecca Bird reverted some of Storyfellow’s edits. On Rational Wiki, AP socks with sysop privileges block other AP socks. Complicating this is the probability that AP is actually two persons, the “Smith brothers.” Emil Kirkegaard recently published an expose of the sock master behind AP. That would be the original AP, not the brother with different obsessions — but from what I’ve seen, they also support each other.

Meta checkuser/lock reports

Filed 20 September 2017

Filed 24 September 2017

Locked 26 Sept 2017

26 accounts. New ones not listed above

Locked 27 Sept 2017

Filed October 15, 2017

locked in this sequence (no explicit checkuser request or report, and not all socks will be seen, no active watch will be maintained, only accounts seen as actively disruptive by the duck test or inferred from logs)

I have a direct communication from the person who has been identified by many as the original “Anglo Pyramidologist” plausibly claiming that he was ZaFrumi but not “99.9%” of the socks mentioned. Even though that is obvious hyperbole, yet because ZaFrumi was not actually tagged as a sock, I have struck the name above. More will be revealed.

Filed 24 January, 2018

Bodybuilder1991 (contr · deleted · block · log · block log · CA · guc · checkuser · lwcheckuser)

Also identified socks already tagged on Wikipedia as AP socks

Other locks

IP reports

Mobile IP

Additional suspected socks, not yet handled globally

Detailed study comparing users

Because a probable AP sock has claimed to have multiple active en.wiki accounts, a study of the editing patterns of AP socks, as well as possible suspect users, is in order. On this subpage, links will facilitate study of contributions and data generated by user comparison tools. Being listed on this subpage is not an accusation of sock puppetry, because there are multiple possible causes of comparison positives. Correction of errors in data or analysis is invited. Please be careful about privacy policy, real-name identification is prohibited. Even if a user has admitted to real-name identification, it should be avoided. The subpage is /User data. —Abd (talk) 14:04, 14 October 2017 (UTC)
This was a meta subpage and is still there.

connection between Anglo Pyramidologist and the Michael skater sock family

(I have seen evidence connecting AP to Michael skater, to be supplied with any filing that depends on it. These users are all blocked on Wikipedia (except as noted above, i.e., possible innocent bystanders). Michael skater socks have generally been globally locked.) I do not assume that all identifications above are correct. After all, the Michael skater socks were identified and tagged as Blastikus in the Bastikus case archive. It only matters if a tagging is then used as evidence against a user cross wiki, as happened with Blastikus (Ben Steigmann), as socks were designed to implicate him, see cheesecloths ben steigmann above. Could an enemy of AP have run these socks to get him whacked? If so, it failed. However, there are known agendas, and, with some care, it can be seen that the false flag socks, which exist, are designed to interrupt and damage the impersonated user while, sometimes, pretending to share the user’s point of view.
There are additional clues in the latest suspected socks that have not yet been checkuser connected, even though one admits to being Michael skater. Because the history is rife with possible impersonations and red herrings,I am not starting there.

Identifiable characteristics of Michael skater socks

Michael skater contributions

  • registered enwiki 22 June, 2017
  • filed SPI for Blastikus.[4]
  • claims to have been following Ben Steigmann on Wikiversity, claims Ben Steigmann (BS)is banned.
  • points to edits of Psychicbias and Myerslover (Steigmann) to w:Frederic W. H. Myers. Meyerslover (Steigmann) reverted by IP with same POV as skater, which also edits w:Bruce Lipton, fringe, epigenetics, “crank,” “quacks.” check geolocation.
  • BS allegedly pushing “psychic beliefs” on Wikiversity
  • reveals alleged BS IP
  • asked if he has another account, does not answer, but says he does not want to reveal his Wikiversity account for fear of being targeted by BS.[5]. This would necessarily be off-wiki drama, if there was anything like that. BS was non-disruptive on Wikiversity, and his WP socking was low-key and not characterized by personal attack or disruption (other than being block evasion, and that was not extensive).
  • pings Manul
  • Edits as IP (forgot password). check geolocation.

more analysis

The following material was rev-del’d for “personal information.” [6] based on a complaint from one of the socks, now globally locked. There was a link to a critical wiki that gave the name of the real-life person allegedly behind AP. I have removed that link. If any other material here violates policy, please suggest changes on Talk. Any registered (not SPA) user may also remove specific allegedly offensive material here. Disruptive editing will be reported. However, this was the complaint that led to the rev-del:[7]
Doxxing and harassment from abd
Abd is personally stalking mikemikev, anglo-pyramidologist, manul and other Wikipedia editors and writing false claims about them [8], he has no technical evidence linking any of those accounts to Ben Steigmann but presents his speculations as factual. He also links to a real life name that is alleged to be of a Wikipedia account, taken from internet troll Rome Viharo‘s website. Can you remove the doxing and stalking? I fail to see why this is being put onto Wikiversity. Abd is a 72 year old man who seems to spend his time online now stalking people. This sort of behaviour and the doxing is unhealthy and breaking multiple laws. Antifa activist (discuss • contribs) 21:08, 25 September 2017 (UTC)
Remarkable — and ironic: the user has given a link that will lead to much more independent information. that was not necessary. This is classic, and this is a long-term user, one might imagine that he would know to report alleged doxxing by email to an admin, not on a public page, because that will call attention to it. However, the real purpose was to irritate the administrator and lead to action to be seen — by me — as harassment. In fact, the admin properly offered to email me the rev-del’d content (completely proper) and I saw all this as evidence that some nerve had been touched.
The report to Dave lies: that page complained about, copied here, did not claim fact, but collected evidence and some preliminary opinion (some of which was incorrect). There is technical evidence for much of the linkage (i.e., checkuser reports) but the duck test can actually be stronger. This user attacked many other users as socks without “technical evidence” in his activity, specifically the sock activity reported in w:Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Blastikus/Archive#19 August 2017 which followed w:Wikipedia:Sockpuppet investigations/Blastikus/Archive#22 June 017 filing by the same user as behind the disruptive sock activity.
The page did not accuse w:User:Manul, mentioned in the study, of any wrong-doing, nor have I found evidence of that. Manul is not responsible for v:User:Friend of Manul nor v:Manuls brother.
w:User:Mikemikev, blocked on Wikipedia, may have been the target of impersonation, as have been others; this appears to be a developed behavior.
There are piles of false accusations, in many places, from AP, and he is essentially a troll, seeking to upset others. Yes, I’ve been spending a lot of time on this case over the last week or so, because AP had done extensive damage, harming others through impersonation, personal attack (often with outing) and damaging wiki content. It took a great deal of research, looking at maybe hundreds of pages, to put together what had happened, and that, then, led to steward requests, granted, and the basic conclusions were confirmed, and then the threatening and menacing response that followed demonstrated deeply the character of this person. He’s obsessed, obviously. I spent a week, he has spent at least six years, with some indications of more than that.
Off-wiki activity will not be documented here unless permitted by wiki administration. But the user does, himself, provide some documentation, as can be seen above. Rome Viharo was a long-term target who decided to fight back.
Per w:WP:stalking, documenting the behavior of wiki users is not, per se, stalking. It is ordinary research, and, in fact, this SPA routinely violated privacy in filing Wikipedia sock puppet investigations and in recent editing.

Tracking one case back

This starts with an account on Wikiversity: v:User:Sci-fi- This led to w:User:Michael skater on Wikipedia. A host of accounts, including this one, were identified by a steward as likely related.
Looking at the list of accounts Identified as Michael skater, I found two that had only edited Commons, one upload each. These were accounts that would be of high interest to Mikemikev, or at least possibly so.
(Interests of Mikemikev, at that time, would overlap those of AP/O. The link between Mikemikev and AP came from RationalWiki, as found by another here. There is more misdirection by an AP sock there. The puppet master here has done what he did on Wikipedia, on other wikis, creating impersonation accounts, creating misdirected responses. He has succeeded in getting targets blocked and banned elsewhere.)
I requested block of those accounts and deletion of the remaining image upload, and that was promptly done. The image ofw:John Fuerst that was deleted led to a usage on RationalWiki, asserted there by a user immediately after upload, and that image went to a redlink when the Commons image was deleted, causing attention and re-upload on RationalWiki. This, then, led, through IP evidence, to recently active IP editing Wikipedia, working on an article that had been the work of w:User:HealthyGirl, blocked as a sock of w:User:Anglo Pyramidologist. John Fuerst himself would be a particular interest of AP/O, while HG’s interests might match those of AP/D. This kind of cross-over seems common. The IP would, then, could be shared IP, linking the two users. The AP accounts have created an incredible mess.
This edit is astonishing. An identified sock of AP, [w:User:Evil Boglin] accuses another, w:User:Goblin Face, of being AP andw:User:HealthyGirl. In this edit, another AP sock, w:User:Late night joggersee this diff, defends HG and is whacked by the admin. The arguments are similar to those made recently by AP/D, and AP/D is apparently real-life involved with one of the founders of Guerilla Skeptics, who might share some agenda on occasion. “Involved” must likely be real-life because of IP identification. GS users come from many locations, though, what has been amazing to me is how much this has *not* been the case. Fooling checkuser is not all that difficult, but AP doesn’t seem to bother. I will not detail how it can be done!
Writing styles may be different. However, a person may also wear more than one hat. Real-life data has shown — I am told by a source I deem reliable — that there are, however, two brothers with the names asserted in various places on the web. So the “my brother did it” excuse, the subject of some level of ridicule on Wikipedia, may actually be somewhat true. But both brothers were disruptive and blocked in their own right. Birds of a feather may have literally been born together.
Again, looking for connections, I looked back at Wikiversity history for accounts with similar behavior, and found several, and one of those led me to Mikemikev as an identified puppet master, from Wikipedia checkuser that caught them. Since Single-unified login, Wikipedia logins are created, often, automatically for people who register on Wikiversity, so Wikipedia checkuser may pick up a consequence of Wikiversity activity. Listed as a Mikemikev sock was w:User:Goblin Face which then connects with even older accounts. I took this back to Anglo Pyramidologist. These various puppet master accounts had not been connected on Wikipedia.
The link to mikemikev was likely an error; rather the same interest would be relevant for AP, long-term. —Abd (talk) 19:24, 28 September 2017 (UTC)
The older Wikiversity SPA accounts possibly involved (listing here is not necessarily a claim of disruptive behavior):
Link to external web site removed as containing personal identifying information.
(This was from the original SPA study on Wikiversity, revision deleted. It was a page containing the name of one of the Smith brothers, perhaps this one.
The site is a Wikipedia criticism site, started by someone who had experienced high disruption on Wikipedia. There are many such sites, his would be relatively sober. His site led me back to w:User:Dan skeptic, who created an “alternate account” before being blocked. That was w:User:Goblin Face, a name I was familiar with from years back, having seen the disruption well before Goblin Face was blocked. Sometimes Wikipedia continues with w:WP:AGF well beyond sanity, as long as vulnerable editors are being attacked, i.e., editors with some minority point of view. DS and GF were a sometimes-not-recognized kind of SPAs, i.e., a “skeptical” point of view — and it is a point of view, as practiced by the abusers — will appear as an interest in many different articles and someone may look at contributions and not see the connection. But a high level of attack on others, not Assuming Good Faith, should properly cause a suspension of that assumption with regard to them. This may actually happen if there is an Arbitration case, but, unfortunately, Wikipedia can be a bit like Lord of the Flies. The “community” — meaning those who show up — can be a vicious mob, not the intention of “consensus” enshrined in policy. A structural problem, and considered quite a difficult one.
In any case, the ”’redacted”’ page refers to brothers. In one of the old SPI discussions, one brother claimed that problem edits were by his brother. This is a common sock defense. However, there may actually be two brothers. As well, the user is aware of defense against checkuser. I have historically, found ways to penetrate the defense, but it is tedious and requires co-temporal editing, it is not useful for sequential socking. The user claims that Ben Steigmann used a defense, but there is no sign that Ben used any active method of avoiding detection. Rather, pot, kettle, black. Maybe. The user did not use defensive methods in the recent Attack of the Massive Inpersonating Socks — possibly because he wanted them all to be identified as socks, but as socks of Steigmann! Howeeer, he also did not use defensive methods to protect *other accounts” which were then revealed. This is the realilty of using VPNS to avoid detection: it’s a nuisance, and given that one can, with low cost, use new accounts as throwaways, an LTA may not bother. He will create accounts to toss mud, he will do it as quickly as possible, and maybe some will stick.
These are just pointers to tracks. There is at least one w:WP:LTA here in fact, though not in recognition on that page. Hundreds of socks. Maybe more than one LTA. This much is clear at this point. Ben Steigmann, the supposed target, is not an LTA. I just reviewed his Blastikus talk page. Very common story. Editor writes too much. Nobody was advising him, just warning him, and nobody telling him what the actual problem was. He did eventually figure it out, but did not know how to recover. When I was active on Wikipedia, I used to identify such users and advise them. If they listened, they often avoided being blocked. I saw only one serious process there: An [ ANI notice] in May, 2011. Common practice on this used to annoy the hell out of me, because when one comes along later, finding the notice is a PITA. However, I know how to do it. What can be tricky is finding the full discussion, not just how it looked when that notice was posted. Here it is. My, my, my. Very common problem. User is convinced an article is Wrong, and then argues at great length on the Talk page. It does matter if he is right or wrong, this will be very much disliked by the community. So when he is warned, he thinks the warning is aying that he is Wrong. About what he’s been advocating. No, and then he’s taken to ANI. And what does he do? He argues — at great length, and with low skill — that he is right. Sometimes users like this can be helped, but Wikipedia typically has no patience for them. Wikiversity does, basically, the Wikiversity structure allows almost endless expression, within reasonable limits, especially on a single page or a tight family of pages, not presented as “neutral.” And if what he was claiming is considered truly offensive (such as it actually being “anti-Semitic,” a point he was arguing endlessly about — or it actually appearing so, because what counts in community decisions is appearance, not necessarily reality — he’d be stopped. But when he eventually came to Wikiversity, he did not misbehave. And I’ve seen that again and again. Give a disruptive user something constructive to do, something of interest to them, many will become constructive. Blastikus was blocked, as was more or less predictable. Looking at his block log, my thought is “They shoot baby seals.” It used to be that if a user was disruptive, there were graduated blocks, to get the user’s attention. Here, the user was immediately indef blocked. I agree that a block was appropriate, but zero to indef in one action? However, some administrators have zero tolerance for what they don’t understand — or have a view of “disruptive users” that they cannot change. Users can change, it it is rare that it happens in one day. So Blastikus argued with the blocks with repeated unblock templates. Nobody told him this was a Bad Idea. If there are pages giving guidance for what to do if blocked, what works — and what doesn’t work — I never saw them. Maybe I should have created one, but I pretty much know what would have happened. It would have been attacked as So, then, sock puppet investigations.
Joe Slovo blocked by duck test, which is heavily vulnerable to possible “POV ban,” i.e, a user with an apparent POV similar to that of a blocked user is blocked as a sock “by the duck test.” It happens fairly commonly.
Pottinger’s Cats blocked, as possibly compromised account. Possible impersonation. A very suspicious “confession.” I will check to see later if Steigmann acknowledged this account. [He did. —Abd (talk) 14:06, 1 October 2017 (UTC)]
Pile of IPs. Checkuser ID’s as same IP user as topic banned [9]. No identification as Blastikus at this point. (ban was a discretionary sanction, meaning only one admin created it. ArbComm created that to make arbitration enforcement easier, then POV admins drove a truck through it. Which is not a claim that this particular action was incorrect, just that these things are not necessarily reliable.
The SPI was filed by vzaak. That seems familiar to me. User talk page was deleted, for personal attacks. User name gone. The page history was concealed by the one who copied content from another page. Well, I’ve been here before. Finding another talk page edit signed with “vzaak” the edit was at 23:40, 31 August 2013. Page history tells me vzaak wasw:User:Manul(the edit). I was unable to find the user rename log; there was a usurpation involved.
Ben Steigmann was almost certainly the real Ben Steigmann. Steigmann had registered a Wikiversity account and was using it. This autocreated a Wikipedia account, and it easily happens that the user goes to Wikipedia, is not blocked, and just edits, may not even realize that they are logged in, if they have been editing by IP. There was only one edit. It may be a continuation of edits by [10]. This was in a discussion with w:Goblin Face. Fully disentangling this mess would take more time than I’m willing to devote. Ben Steigmann was not blocked as a result of this report, but did not edit again, He was not blocked until
Pottinger’s cats was accused above, blocked, and accused again. Evidence? supposed confession, easily spoofed. That’s a pattern here, seen most egregiously in the later SPI, with a large pile of impersonating socks. There is no sign of Steigmann being a massively disruptive sock puppeteer, this entire Blastikus archive, up until the activity this year (2017) was quite weak compared to LTAs and compared to AP.
Manul also filed a request for ban for Blastikus. The request failed. My conclusion: Blastikus is not banned on Wikipedia.Any admin could unblock; properly they would want to see assurances of low risk of disruption. It would be easier to request this for Ben Steigmann, as a real-name account with no special history of disruption (other than a relatively low level of block evasion, not necessarily disruptive in itself. But an unblock request could avoid considering most of that, with mere disclosure of actual socking and then a commitment to using a single account and avoiding old behaviors. It’s actually easy, unless some faction massively attacks — which could happen in this case.
In recent discussions, it has commonly been said that Blastikus is banned on Wikipedia. No, apparently not. Neither has any unblock request been refused since 2011. However, my private information is that Steigmann (Blastikus) may not want to return. If he does, he might want a new account. Those are all issues for him and his future. For now, he’s unblocked on Wikiversity and he may not care even about that.
(Steigmann was later unblocked on Wikiversity as a result of the checkuser investigations, and his resource was restored, and as soon as he started editing it, again, he was attacked again. To be sure, he had socked on Wikipedia, though relatively harmlessly. The attack on him was, this time, by an IP user massively complaining on Wikipedia, Contributions/117.20.41.10, which then also attacked him on Wikiversity and now has shown up here. That’s an open proxy. This is the LTA, certainly, from some of the edits. Note added 02:28, 2 December 2017 (UTC))
What I care about is the massive disruption caused by long-term attack on Steigmann, and on alleged “pseudoscience” that is not clearly such — and, even if it is pseudoscience, Wikiversity can cover alleged pseudoscience if it is done in a neutral fashion, and, unlike an encyclopedia, Wikiversity neutrality allows full presentation of alternate points of view (there is no notability policy, only neutrality), and attacks showed up on anyone who assisted Steigmann, such as me, now as in the past. I will also document this, it has been done almost entirely through SPAs, probably socks of the Sock Ring described recently. When Wikiversity users and their work is attacked by SPAs with nothing to lose, it is incumbent on the entire Wikiversity community to defend them and Wikiversity resources, and when this is lost, due to various excuses or just plain neglect, the entire Wikiversity project is at risk. The abusers will almost always go after those they perceive as vulnerable. If they succeed, they will be emboldened and they will then go after bigger targets.