As far as I know, this is the first edit-fight between humans to take place on the LW wiki, and no procedure for resolving edit-fights is currently in place. I don't think framing this is a matter of ownership is quite right; we'd be having approximately the same discussion no matter who did the edit and reversion. It's worth noting that Wikipedia has been struggling with this issue for its entire lifetime, and ended up with a situation that people seem mostly unhappy with.

The best outcome would be for some neutral writer to step in, receive support from b... (read more)

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As far as I know, this is the first edit-fight between humans to take place on the LW wiki...

This is somewhat off-topic, but have there been edit-fights between non-human agents on the LW Wiki ? ... Because that sounds kind of awesome. :-)

14JenniferRM9yI wish there was a way to transfer karma between LW users because all kinds of awesome social hacks become possible with point transfers. Like cake cutting algorithms [] :-) For example, each person could privately commit to a karma amount they would be willing to either pay or receive in exchange for getting their way or not for a period of time (say the next six months of wiki time), the high bidder gets their way and transfers the average of the bids to the low bidder, with a public note in the transfer logs that cross references the relevant wiki page and revision. Eliezer would rightfully dominate such transactions, if he cared enough, but the facts of each case would accumulate publicly, and the basis for his preferences receiving weight would flow from the natural fact of his substantial positive contributions to the community.
3PhilGoetz9yI'm not asking for resolution of this page, because I don't expect to have time to get into an in-depth debate over group selection for at least a couple of months. Really, I want to know a) what the legal facts are, b) who sets policy and what the policy is, and c) what the community thinks the policy should be.

Who owns LessWrong?

by PhilGoetz 1 min read29th Sep 201185 comments


The LessWrong wiki contains a biased and offensive entry on group selection.  I edited the wiki page, to append some points representing an opposing view at the end.  Eliezer removed my points, leaving only a link at the end.  He said he thought my points were wrong, but would not say which points he thought were wrong, or why he thought they were wrong.

Is it reasonable for me to restore my changes over Eliezer's edit, since he is unwilling to give reasons for his edit?  What sort of rights or privileges does Eliezer have over LW or LW wiki content?

(Please try not to turn this into a discussion of group selection.)

ADDED:  Please go meta, folks.  I am not trying to argue about this specific Wiki article.  I am not asking for redress.  Specifics about this wiki article are irrelevant.  I am asking whether this is still a benevolent dictatorship.

The relevant questions are not what the appropriate form of debate is, or anything about this wiki article.  The relevant questions are:

  • Who owns the domain?
  • Who created the Wiki?
  • Who owns the code?
  • Who pays for the servers?
  • If someone is in charge, what rights do they reserve for themselves?
  • At what point does the ratio of community contributions to Eliezer's contributions mean we have the right to claim some ownership?

The Wiki main page says, "The wiki about rationality that anyone who is logged in can edit".  Apparently that is a lie.  If I do not have as much right as Eliezer does to write a wiki post, I want that point explicitly spelled out.