Correct Instead Of Criticize

[NOTE: It seems this page keeps getting "corrected" out of existence by those who DisagreeByDeleting. Sad, but the occasional WikiGnome must come along and, um, correct these intrusive and destructive edits. Oh, well.]

It seems to me that some are editing this page under the assumption that one must follow the guidelines suggested by the title and original content in order to contribute to it. I don't see what makes this page any different than others here.

I did it to make a point. Why did you undo it? -- EricHodges

I thought I just explained, right up there. It looked like the edit was to strip out CC's comments that disagreed by criticizing rather than correcting this page, so that's why I undid it and left the above comment. What is still unclear?

Yes, the edit was to remove the criticism and correct the page. The result was a page that did not support its title. That showed the problem with CorrectInsteadOfCriticize. I still don't see where you say why you undid it. What is your motivation? Are you trying to criticize my correction? -- EH

Basically, yes. I don't see why this page must illustrate nothing but its title. Some believe in correcting, others in debating, others in a complex mixture, etc. Why must one ascribe to the philosophy of a page in order to be allowed to participate in it? -- dm

But it illustrated much more than its title after I corrected it. It illustrated the flaw in its title. I don't ascribe to the philosophy of this page and I tried to participate in it. But then you criticized my correction by correcting my criticism. Warning: This page may cause dizziness. -- EH

Heh. :-) Perhaps your point-by-illustration was too subtle for me? Can you make your point in a way that doesn't get misunderstood, as apparently I did here? -- dm

My point is Costin's point. Most of the pages on this wiki don't have a "correct" form. If everyone corrected the pages they disagree with we would be left with no signal. CorrectInsteadOfCriticize is not the heart of Wikiness. Wikiness has no heart. Wiki is the accretion of the most stubbornly defended signal. -- EH

Then I guess I largely agree with you both. -- dm

[Then it would seem to give wiki a heart, correctness, accuracy and fairness instead of criticism and stubbornness would be in order.]

That statement is highly speculative opinion. If I were to "correct" it, it would no longer resemble your opinion. Most of the content here can't be correct, accurate or fair. Even if we remove the opinion and retain only facts, there is no single arbiter of correctness. Given enough participants someone will disagree with any statement of fact.

[It seems people who are persistent, and have a lot of time on their hands and can afford to hang around until the last word is said will determine what "signal" is to exist. Is this correct, accurate or fair?]

Your statement is correct. At least that's my opinion, based on what I've observed. The situation is not "fair" in the sense of school yard games played under adult supervision. Some folks have more time, more interest, more obsession to devote to signal defense. Some folks are more articulate or persuasive. The result is that some signals are better represented here than others. That's as "fair" as it gets without a signal cop.
Correct, instead of criticize is the heart of WikiNature.

All other forms of communication are dialogues, antagonistic, to and fro, for and against, point counterpoint, never resolving.

That is great, that is good. But a Wiki has something more.

Instead of standing on the sidelines saying, "That is wrong", you are always one click of EditText away from making it Right.

This doesn't mean that the diversity of opinion of other forms is lost. A good Wiki page states multiple viewpoints clearly and concisely without personal attacks.

Instead of saying to yourself, "Ah but he missed...", one click on EditText and you can fill in the gap.

No viewpoint is neutral, no fact indisputable. Wiki is about someone's, somewhere's experience.

Viewpoints, boldly stated as fact and succinctly justified make good Wiki.

Viewpoints require justification. Facts do not. Hence, stating viewpoints as facts is merely a way to avoid providing justification.

When the topic permits alternate views, a good Wiki page should briefly summarize and link to opposing views.
CorrectInsteadOfCriticize is an AntiPattern, good mostly for weenies. It's antithetic to CriticsAreYourBestFriends and CriticalSpirit in general. Let's say somebody X claims something on a wiki page, and I disagree with that. To jump in, edit that guy's paragraph and "correct" it would be presumptuous, and most of all condescending. The proper way to do it is to respond bringing the counter-arguments, counter-evidence, where it is a? the case signaling the errors in the matter of fact. Why some people do not like this proper way of debate, is because they take criticism personally, and some are offended by criticism. This is an absolutely immature attitude. I would expect that if somebody was mistaken so greatly that the criticism demolishes the argument put forth in the first place, that person should have the courage and honesty to admit he was wrong, and others should let the paragraphs stand, or let him(her) take the initiative and correct the errors himself(herself) with acknowledgement to the critics. After all there's value for other people not to repeat the same errors in reasoning.

Jumping in directly with CorrectInsteadOfCriticize is many times impolite and maybe condescending and presumptuous.

Definitely! CorrectInsteadOfCriticize works when the author being corrected does not object. If there is reason to think there will be an objection, then discussion is needed to try to reach consensus first.
Would the original author of CorrectInsteadOfCriticize please step in and describe what he means by "Correct"? It appears, at least to me, we have a lot of musing about "What the hell did he mean?" as opposed to any rationale discussion.

Definition of Correction

[I am not the original author of this statement. I am just trying to provide a strawman to help focus discussion]

I would define a correction as a change that brings improvement to a statement without changing the statement's original intent. Spelling and grammar changes would be examples of correction, as would be updating of facts and references. A paraphrase or summary may also be a correction, but care must be taken to preserve shades of meaning.

This leaves a wide range of things that fall outside the bounds of what can be accomplished through correction. Other mechanisms are required when correction is inappropriate.

-- WayneMack
"To complain is perhaps to repair" -- DonaldNoyes
See: DiscussInsteadOfCriticize

Contrast: RespondingToCriticism, PositiveDialogueCommunity

CategoryCriticism, CategoryWiki

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