2018 Arbitration Committee Elections

Status as of 17:49 (UTC), Thursday, 4 April 2024 (Purge)

The nomination statements of editors running in the 2018 Arbitration Committee elections appear below.

An editor is eligible to stand as a candidate who:
(i) has a registered account and has had at least 500 mainspace edits by 1 November 2018.
(ii) is in good standing and not subject to active blocks or site-bans.
(iii) meets the Wikimedia Foundation's criteria for access to non-public data, is willing to sign the Foundation's non-public information confidentiality agreement[a]
(iv) has disclosed any alternative accounts in his or her election statement. (Legitimate accounts which have been declared to the Arbitration Committee prior to the close of nominations need not be publicly disclosed.)
Caution: Candidates should be aware that they are likely to receive considerable internal and external scrutiny. External scrutiny may include attempts to investigate on- and off-wiki activities; previous candidates have had personal details revealed and unwanted contact made with employers and family. We are unable to prevent this and such risks will continue if you are successful.
Statements must:
(i) be submitted after 00:00 UTC on 4 November 2018 and until 23:59 UTC on 13 November 2018;
(ii) not exceed a limit of 400 words[b] (although candidates are free to link to a longer statement if they wish);
(iii) confirm that the candidate will fully comply with the criteria for access to non-public data;
(iv) include a disclosure of all prior and alternate accounts or confirmation that all such accounts have been declared to the Arbitration Committee;
(v) be created using the inputbox below, by appending your username to the existing text, clicking the button, and following the instructions.
The nomination period is now over.


  1. ^ From the Wikimedia Foundation's Access to nonpublic information policy:

    Because we believe that safeguarding the privacy of the Wikimedia community is an important Wikimedia value, those who have access to nonpublic information need to:

    • Be at least 18 years old (except email response team members, who must be at least 16 years old);
    • Provide contact and identification information; and
    • Sign a confidentiality agreement.
  2. ^ The mandatory disclosure of alternate accounts and declaration of intent to comply with the WMF identification policy are exempt from the 400-word limit, although candidates are encouraged to be concise.

Standing candidates[edit]

Robert McClenon

I have been an editor of the English Wikipedia since 2005. The areas in which I have been providing volunteer support include content dispute resolution at the dispute resolution noticeboard, draft article review at Articles for Creation, and new page review at New Page Patrol.

The English Wikipedia, with nearly six million articles, is a success story, one of the great success stories of the collaborative use of the Internet to provide convenient access to human knowledge via the Internet. It is essential that the Wikipedia community and the Arbitration Committee preserve and maintain the quality of Wikipedia, primarily against two problems. The first problem, older and more obvious, is troublesome or uncivil editors, who disrupt the electronic workplace, impeding the maintenance of the encyclopedia. The second problem is more recent, the result of Wikipedia’s success and respect, and less obvious and more subtle, and is editors with conflicts of interest. Now that the English Wikipedia has nearly six million articles, maintaining quality is more important than any expansion of the encyclopedia. As an elected member of the ArbCom, I will work with the other arbitrators and the community to preserve the quality of the encyclopedia.

In recent years the ArbCom has heard fewer cases than in earlier years, because many cases are resolved by the community or by Arbitration Enforcement. I think that the ArbCom should follow a middle-ground approach, more than recently but fewer than in the past, as to how many cases to hear, and would suggest a “three-trip rule” under which issues, either content issues or contentious editors, that have already been considered twice by the community and come back a third time are ready for the deliberate quasi-judicial process of arbitration.

I would also suggest that the ArbCom occasionally consider cases of undisclosed paid editing. The duck test may be appropriate; an editor who walks like a paid editor and quacks may be a paid editor. The ArbCom can receive privileged information, avoiding the prohibition against doxing undisclosed paid editors.

An evolving statement can be read at User:Robert McClenon/ArbCom Nov18 Statement.

I understand that arbitrators are highly trusted functionaries who are entrusted with non-public privileged data. I intend to maintain that trust by safeguarding the non-public data. I meet the requirements for trusted functionaries and will sign the agreement to safeguard privileged data.

I have one additional account, User:McClenon Test, which I have used for test purposes, for instance, in order to look at my primary account.


Greetings from onboard the Navigator of the Seas, where we're currently about 100 miles west of Casablanca, Morocco in route to Miami, Florida. Internet here is both fantastically expensive and extremely slow, Which is all to say I won't be checking the questions page as often as most other candidates given my current situation, but I'll be fully home the evening of the 18th and will catch up on any slack, should I fail to get through the question page during the sailing.

So, I'm Courcelles, or Brad, as those who've gotten email from me or met me at various conferences know. Either one works. I've done this before for a total of 3 and a half years, though I was largely inactive at the end of my second term. Why? Had some serious medical issues that are under control now, and I had my last two eye surgeries, the last one in March of this year. So, yay, I'm not worn out all the time, and I'm not blind! And as long as I take my medicine daily, this isn't going to change. SO I've been back to full activity all this year, and am fully prepared for the workload and e-mail volume if I get elected again.

What's an Arbcom statement supposed to say, anyhow? This is my third, and I still don't know. I promise to give each decision my full attention, to read everything submitted, and to try and make the best decisions I can. Wikipedia is in a bit of a crisis when it comes to both recruiting and retaining editors, and I'll do my best to focus Arbcom on doing what it can on these areas. WE need to do what we can to keep editors happy, as our motivation for doing anything here has to come from within. I'm offering my learned experience, and the mistakes I've learned from while on the committee in the past, for service again, I hope that's enough. I'll answer any questions you have, I just ask your patience.

As a checkuser and oversighter since 2011, I'm fully complaint with the policy on access to non-public data, and will continue to do so. The only other account I use is Courcelles is travelling, though I had one for testing purposes I've forgotten the password and username of, and a holding bot account just in case I ever decide to run one, though that's rather unlikely.

Fred Bauder

I would like to return to the Arbitration Committee. I took part in the original discussions that resulted in creation of the committee. In large part that discussion revolved around civility, one of the pillars of Wikipedia. My history as an arbitrator is complicated, I served for several years... As an arbitrator now, I would emphasize re-establishing civility as a central policy. I don't have the time or energy I had 10 years ago, but I think I could effectively contribute to the work of the Committee. As you view negative comments ask why anyone would be extremely opposed to having someone on the Arbitration Committee who would enforce civility and forestall using incivility and other nefarious tactics to limit participation by others in order to control content. I'm after the bullies, but they're fighting back! See the question page and Wikipedia:Arbitration/Requests/Case/Fred Bauder/Workshop.

I will fully comply with the criteria for access to non-public data. All prior and alternative accounts have been declared to the Arbitration Committee in the past, although I do not remember the names of any of them other than Fredbauder (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · filter log · block user · block log). I think there is one with a few edits.


Hi everyone! I'm GorillaWarfare, or Molly White. I'm a 25-year-old software engineer and team lead. I've been an editor since 2006 (active since 2010 or so) and an admin since August 2010. I've served on the Arbitration Committee for four years (January 2014 – December 2017). I've also been an oversighter since 2013 and a checkuser since I joined the Committee in 2014. I chose not to run last year because I needed a break and because I'd become increasingly busy in real life. While I'm still busy, I'm confident based on my past experience with the ArbCom workload that I can continue to be an active member of the Committee.

I will copy a (mildly edited for accuracy) part of my statement from 2015, because it still rings true today: "I was not an uncontroversial arbitrator in my four years on the Committee. I certainly made some mistakes during my tenure; I personally think my biggest shortcoming was my timidness to speak my mind when I thought something was wrong when I first took the position. I think many people will agree that I have overcome that. I realize that I've made a reputation for myself as a feminist and as someone who is willing to acknowledge and fight against the gender gap issue on Wikipedia. I think that making Wikipedia a welcoming and safe place for non-men to contribute will help the project immeasurably, and be beneficial to all editors regardless of gender. If you don't think that that is suitable for an arbitrator, I urge you not to vote for me."

Part of why I chose to run this year is the lack of women candidates throwing their hats in the ring. The Arbitration Committee and the quality of its work suffer when it is made up of too many people from similar backgrounds.

I meet the criteria for access to non-public data and will sign a confidentiality agreement if it needs to be renewed. I have used a few other accounts in the past, notably User:Theunicyclegirl (my first account, until I lost the password a year in) and User:NEU-Molly (an account used when I was helping with the WikiEd program in college). I also have some unused doppelganger accounts (User:Gorilla Warfare and User:GorrillaWarfare being the ones I remember) and a now-unused User:GorillaWarfarePublic account for editing on shared computers.

Joe Roe

Hi, I'm Joe. I've been an editor since 2006 and an administrator for just under a year. My main editing interests are archaeology and academic biography; recently I've been focused on filling in our biographical coverage of notable women in archaeology. On the administrative side, I work mostly in articles for deletion, deletion review, and new page patrol.

I'm nominating myself because several editors whose judgement I respect have suggested I'd be a good candidate, because I have the time to serve on the committee, and because I think I will find the work engaging and rewarding. Since getting the admin tools last year, I've learned a lot about assessing consensus in complex and often contentious discussions. I don't frequently participate in dispute resolution venues like WP:ANI, and I think they can be overemphasised: most disputes on Wikipedia take place, and are resolved, in regular article and project talk pages or discussion venues like AfD. My general approach to dispute resolution is to try to cut away extraneous "drama" and encourage editors to focus on the salient common ground: our policies and guidelines, verifiable information, and the fact that we are all here to build an encyclopaedia.

I would not be joining the committee with any specific agenda in mind. I'm a firm believer in consensus as Wikipedia's most important organising principle. In that context, I see ARBCOM as the necessary exception to the rule: it exists to deal with those few edge cases where consensus-building fails. It follows that the cases it considers should be extremely limited, but that it should not be shy in passing effective resolutions when they are needed.

I edit under my real name and am willing to formally identify myself to the WMF. I have never been blocked or banned, meet the critera for access to non-public data, and am willing to sign the confidentially agreement. I have one alternate account, User:Joe Roe (mobile), which I use when travelling or on public computers.

Thank you for your consideration. – Joe (talk) 17:09, 13 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]


I've been at Wikipedia for the last eleven years as editor and administrator. Over those years I've worked with new articles and drafts, trying to keep improvable ones from being deleted--and removing the others, while trying to give realistic advice to new editors and dealing with questions about reliable sources.

I've been a member of Arb Com for the last four years My most accomplishment was helping persuade the committee to accept their part of the responsibility for dealing with violations of the terms of use, particularly about undeclared paid editors; when I suggested this at the beginning of my first term, no one else supported it; by now, almost all the committee does, and procedures are about to be announced. I have helped influence our being a little more willing to judge by the merits rather than the technicalities of procedures -- both in appeals and in decisions; towards our taking a slightly more serious attitude towards gross impoliteness, towards devising more effective remedies; and even perhaps making some progress towards rationalizing arbitration enforcement. It seems reasonable to want to follow these up. I try to be a voice for editors interested in the quality of the encyclopedia; their efforts can sometimes be lost in the bureaucracy--in this respect I may be a little different than some of the other returning candidates.

My real name and my background are on my user page; I am identified to the foundation, I've signed the necessary agreements. and alternate accounts have been previously disclosed.


Hi, I'm AGK, or Anthony if you prefer real names. I have edited Wikipedia for 12 years, been an administrator for 11 years, and was appointed as a community checkuser in 2011.
In 2012–13 and 2014–15, I served 4 years as an arbitrator. I volunteer to serve another term. By volunteering, I offer experience and some institutional memory – but, more importantly, what I hope you will agree is a long record of sound judgment. As a community member and administrator, I am probably known for being willing to make difficult calls and to work in understaffed administrative areas. As an arbitrator, I was less adventurous and I believe the committee should balance effectiveness with avoiding overreach. Alongside colleagues, in my prior terms I:
  • wrote the essay functus officio and facilitated, behind-the-scenes, the hand-over of inappropriate ArbCom responsibilities (like child protection) to non-volunteers at the WMF.
  • wrote the modern version of discretionary sanctions, a system which had lost balance, become known for harshness, and grown unfit for purpose over the years – but I think we have more to do
  • contributed to hundreds of arbitration proceedings.
  • drafted a number of final decisions
If selected, I will work for you to ensure that I (and the committee) work transparently, deal fairly with people, encourage contributor retention, and provide an effective process.
By no means, if elected, could I expect every person be happy with each of the hundreds of decisions I am volunteering to take. I will even be unhappy myself with a few: I agonised over several decisions while an arbitrator. However, I commit to examining matters diligently, to clearly explaining my decision to you, and to being approachable. Thank you for your consideration.


Hi, I am Kelapstick, and for those who are unfamiliar with me, I have been around since about 2007, and an admin since 2013. I was appointed as an Oversighter in 2015, and served on the Arbitration Committee from 2016-2017. After a year off the committee, I am happy to volunteer my services again to the English Wikipedia. I don't have much else to say, and don't have any platform to run on. I am just happy to help out where I can.
I have one other account Kelapstick on the Run (talk · contribs), and as a former Arbitration Committee member, and Oversight and CheckUser holder, I am current on all required access to non-public information documentation.


Hello, I'm Isarra. I'm an Uncyclopedia admin (I think, unless they deopped me again) with considerable experience caballing, unnecessarily escalating situations, and generally getting involved with all the wrong things. I do not edit content, I have no idea what constitutes a reliable source anymore as most of the things we used to think were reliable 'Wikipedia-grade' sources seem to have completely forgotten how to fact check, and the net total of my contributions in the past six months appear to have consisted entirely of weird uploads, commenting on other people's patches on gerrit and forgetting to get anyone to actually review my own, and prodding other people to do things for me on IRC. I would like to say that this is at least some part of why, if you are using Timeless, you may not have seen any of the changes I've promised actually deployed to the project even if they were implemented at some point, but sadly the truth is more some combination of 'I fell down the stairs a few weeks ago' and something about a pineapple, which I'm not going to get into.
I am running for a seat on the English Wikipedia Arbitration Committee not on a platform of pie as I have previous years, but simply because of the ever-present lack of discussion of baseball in the deliberations of the cases themselves. I don't commit to trying to address this, only to bringing it up now, and then proceeding to completely ignore everything I said here and just do nothing at all if, by some insane fluke, I am elected.
Don't ask me about pie. I have nothing to say on the matter.


Hi. I served on ArbCom in 2016 and 2017, and would like to do so again.

I find ArbCom to be a kind of necessary evil, except that it's not evil. It should be a last resort, and I think that in the last couple of years it has indeed become more of that, with fewer high-profile cases (something that started before my tenure--I take no credit for that), and fewer high-profile cases also means fewer opportunities for the community to rip itself apart.

One of the things I learned is that much ArbCom work is done behind the scenes. Some of that is administrative, governing the use of CU and alternative accounts and stuff like that. Other issues are highly privacy-sensitive, and when I was on ArbCom we dealt with a fair number of them. Like others, I don't have much of a platform to run on, though transparency is one of them--and it's ironic, or unfortunate, or both, that in some cases it's impossible to be transparent, and the community will just have to take ArbCom's word for it. All the more reason to vote in trusted editors, and I hope some of you trust me along with this slate of other candidates, some of whom are among the editors whose judgment and discretion I trust most.

OK, I maybe have one thing to offer to you: I want the WMF to be much more proactive when it comes to harassment. And I'm not talking about civility, which is a big thing but cannot be pursued by the WMF or easily mandated by Arbcom--I mean the very real online harassment some of our editors experience from various trolls and socks. I've asked for this repeatedly, already when I was on the committee, and will continue to do so.

I have a few alternative accounts, all of which are disclosed to ArbCom, and none of which get in the way of "usual" business. For the peanut gallery, I'll be a bit more specific: I used to have a few "funny" accounts, but I forgot their names, and if I remember correctly they were created for me by someone else. It's been ages. I have an account I use for teaching Wikipedia classes. And I have a near-dormant account, last used in May of last year, which has a female user name and was an experiment in seeing how female editors are treated; she's not been very active, and what she's done has been mostly in article, not Wikipedia space. It's a very busy time for me right now workwise, and I hope I will be able to answer all y'all's questions in a timely manner--but next spring should be more calm than this.


Hello, I am Mkdw. I was first appointed to the Arbitration Committee in 2016 and I am putting myself forward for a second term.
To tell you a little bit about my time on Wikipedia, I first began editing in 2006. I worked on a number of regionally related articles and portals (when they were a much more common entity). I stepped away while at school and came back in 2012. I became an administrator in 2013 (RFA) and I retain access to OTRS and UTRS.
I consider myself one of the more active participating members of the Arbitration Committee and take on some of the internal clerical work with some others. It has meant my time has shifted away from editing but I am typically on everyday. ArbCom is far less busy with cases but receives a significant number of appeals and inquiries by email. We have been exploring a way to publish statistics. Hopefully a way can be found. There have been some reforms that are mid-process or being discussed that I would like to see completed, such as a better process and set of requirements for functionary activity. Undisclosed paid editing and checkuser appeals are steadily on the rise and my experience at SPI has been very helpful.
Transparency has been a defining issue for the Arbitration Committee. It has been tremendously challenging to deal with matters that require strict confidentiality while also preserving the trust of the community. While it is not always possible to disclose information about those situations, despite inquiries from the community, it is unquestionably important that the community trusts in the individuals with whom they have appointed to make these decisions. As such, any appointment process largely benefits from having a broad selection of candidates to best represent the community with whom they elect. I am here to stand as one of those options.
As a current member of the Arbitration Committee, I have signed the Confidentiality Agreement for Non-public Information and will comply with the criteria.
My inactive alternate accounts are User:Mkdw Bot and User:Mkdw VF. I recently registered User:Mkdw (Public) as part of a workshop and outreach partnership with the main public library branch in my city.


I have been an admin since 2008, and I served on the Committee during 2012 and 2013. I joined Wikipedia in 2006, not just so I could help build articles, but also so I could be part of this project, which I feel is a remarkable example of collaborative human achievement. I love and respect Wikipedia and the community that has developed to build it and keep it moving in the right direction. I feel that the rules we have generated here for our community are a model for how society as a whole could be run. While ArbCom is a part of our community - it is not above or separate from it, it is set up and run by the community, with the consent of the community - it is a weak part of our community, showing where our guidelines and methods sometimes let us down. As time has gone by, we have needed the Committee less and less, showing that we are growing and developing as a community. This is good. We may one day be able to disband ArbCom, but for now we still need it as a backstop. So these days the main function of the Committee is in deciding when to accept or reject a case. Send a complex case back to the community, and we can end up with prolonged disruption and frustration with perhaps the wrong people leaving the project. Take on an easy case, and we weaken our community's resolve and confidence, allowing the community to rely too much on the backstop rather than finding solutions ourselves - something we are actually very good at doing. Once ArbCom take on a case the Committee needs to work together with the community to find a water-tight solution. While resolving the case quickly is helpful to all concerned, finding a decent solution is more of a priority than speed.

I created User:SiikTook in December 2008 purely to test out the account creation tool. It's never been used. I gave my identity credentials to the Foundation back in 2011, though am happy to do so again if required. And I confirm that I will fully comply with the criteria for access to non-public data.


Hello, I am Lourdes, and am active here since end 2015. In my time here, I have authored, written and edited a few articles, including an FA, a couple of FLs and a few GAs and DYKs. Some of the scripts I've written include the Wikipedia:PageCuration script and some more that can be viewed here. I was accepted as an administrator by the community earlier this year, and post pressure of RL work getting over, took up the bit some time ago; since then, I am slowly easing into the role, dabbling in at the AfD, UAA, ANI and AN3 desks, and checking out a few specific edit filters.
I am putting up my nomination to give the editorial community a chance to elect a relative newbie who may bring a fresher perspective while viewing issues that are brought up to the notice of ArbCom. I understand there are many editors more capable and experienced than I am who are standing for the elections, such as Drmies and Courcelles, who I adore. I myself would have wished that some of the editors I respect the most, such as Iridescent, Tony Ballioni, Cullen, and Ritchie were standing too, to give the community a wider option from an outstanding base.
Having had significant experience in editing, I realize the imperative to strengthen the editor base internationally and to be more inclusive. I also understand the need for thoroughness, both procedural and personal, that comes with the responsibility of ArbCom. I confirm that if elected, I'll take care of these to the fullest. I've made mistakes in the past, apologized for them and more importantly learnt from them. At ArbCom, I hope my overall experience and these lessons that I have learnt in my tenure help me in assessing cases and issues with a more empathetic viewpoint. I hope the community considers my candidacy in this positive light.
I confirm that I'll be compliant with the policy on access to non-public data. My alternative user ids are LourdesBot, ❤️(usage policy) and User:Wìkìpe-tanFool's RfA. My current account was renamed from User:Xender Lourdes.

Withdrawn candidates[edit]

Patient Zero

Hello, I'm Patient Zero, and I would like to apply for this year's Arbitration Committee. I've been on Wikipedia for quite a while; however, I have recently returned from a wikibreak having just completed my A Level examinations. I'm now an undergraduate Law student who is hoping to do the BPTC after finishing my degree. Some of you may be reading this and thinking, well, if I've constantly got other commitments then how on earth would I be a suitable arbitrator? I'll answer this question concisely: I plan on returning to my original activity levels (from between 2016-17) starting this month.

I mainly specialise in anti-vandalism work on Wikipedia, using Huggle and Twinkle to identify and remove problematic edits; this is something I have been doing for a few years now, albeit on-and-off. However, nowadays having returned after a short absence I'd like to pursue something different too!

I've matured significantly over the years and consider myself to be an individual who is capable of staying cool when the editing gets hot. Furthermore, the degree I am currently pursuing requires me to read case notes and legal transcripts, and then come to a decision with regards to the judgement. I am capable of being a neutral third-party in disputes and I am not an individual who becomes emotionally involved in such matters.

I'm very knowledgeable about confidentiality owing to my parents' (and grandparents', actually!) field of work. I cannot go into details with regards to what that entails on here, however if a member of Arbcom were to email me with any questions regarding this, I'd be more than happy to explain. I have had to handle sensitive data in the past and as such this is not beyond my capabilities in any way. I can confirm I am exactly 19 years and 0 months of age, I am identified to the WMF, and I have signed the Access to nonpublic information policy.

All alternate accounts can be found here.

EDIT : After some consideration, I have decided to withdraw my application for this year, as I am afraid I will not have the time to answer all the questions that people have asked, and I must prioritise other matters (in real life) right now. However, this does not mean I will be inactive again; I will most definitely continue trying to be more active around here. Perhaps I'll give this another go next year. Best, Patient Zerotalk 21:24, 12 November 2018 (UTC) Patient Zerotalk 16:13, 5 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]

Doug Weller

I'm Doug Weller (my real name) and I have been an editor since April 2006, an administrator since September 2008, and a member of the Arbitration Committee since January 2015. I'm also a fairly active editor and of my about 191,000 edits 49.5% are to WP:Main space. My only alternate accounts are User:DougWeller and User:Dougweller each of which has 2 edits and is dormant.

The number of cases coming before the Committee has declined but there can be significant delays, both in accepting or declining cases, and in reaching a decision. The Committee has to deal with a lot of email, and again there can be significant delays before they are handled. If re-elected I will do what I can to minimize those delays. During the four years I have been an arbitrator I believe that I have been open-minded and willing to change my mind when new arguments are presented. That won't change.

I'm identified with the WMF and meet the requirements specified in the access to nonpublic information policy.

WITHDRAWING: I'm withdrawing now that so many more excellent candidates have decided to run. I'm glad to see the experienced Arbitrators willing to take on this onerous task again, but I'm particularly pleased to see that User:Joe Roe, who has never been an Arbitrator and will thus bring a fresh perspective, has thrown his hat into the ring. Doug Weller talk 08:39, 15 November 2018 (UTC)[reply]