Recently, and specifically on RfCM (though it extends to all RfXs), I've been seeing oppose reasoning saying that we have either "too many" or "enough" users in possession of a user right. Firstly, I can see the issues of having too many of something but I also have my own personal gripe with this type of reasoning. The definition of how many users we can have as an admin, rollback or whatever seems to vary greatly on this wiki - some believe you can "never have too many" while others believe the opposite.
I personally don't believe it's fair to oppose somebody's user rights nomination primarily because some believe we have too many of something. The whole point of community input on an RfX is to determine whether or not the user can be trusted with the tools and whether or not they're suitable for the appropriate user right.
This issue can easily spur from timing. A user who is highly suitable for admin and is trusted by the community could put in an RfA at a time when there's high sysop activity and be unanimously opposed because "we have too many". I personally believe if a user can be trusted to use the tools effectively and efficiently then it doesn't really matter and that the "too many" argument shouldn't be used to oppose somebody unless there's another (and preferably stronger) reason to back it up. The "too many" argument honestly has no focus on the user who was nominated for the rights or their merits but rather other users who also have the rights.
I do understand that the "too many" argument is just of much of a personal opinion as the "we can never have too many" argument and users are welcome to their opinions. But I should reiterate that you shouldn't really rely on personal thoughts when making an argument in an RfX.
As consensus is usually determined by the strength of an argument, I'd like to discuss where the community stands on this type of reasoning and how much of an effect they feel the "too many/enough" argument should have on the outcome of an RfX. Lost Labyrinth • (c) • (b) 13:18, July 20, 2013 (UTC)
I personally am of the belief that there is no magic number of 'too many' in any particular position. Ultimately the decisions of the community on whether or not to promote shouldn't be based on whether it's believed that we have enough already. If that sentiment was common, it would be more appropriate to pursue closing down the requests page prior to the user submitting their request for rights.
I feel that often the 'too many <position>' argument is used as a convenient justification to avoid conferring rights on unsuitable individuals. People can use the excuse of 'well, we just don't need any <position>s right now' instead of really coming out in opposition to the user. I don't think this is done maliciously but rather to spare the applicant's feelings. However, if there is an issue with the applicant, it is in their and everyone's best interests to make it known and to sort it out. -- LostInRiverview talk ~ blog 00:01, July 23, 2013 (UTC)
I disagree with the "too many" belief. I don't believe that "already having enough" users of a position is a justifiable argument for opposition. In my opinion, if the community does believe that there's enough users in the position then closing the requests should be pursued instead. The requests being opened signifies that we're looking for people to be in this position and opposition based on the amount of people already in it isn't fair. --Bleeh(talk) (blog) 01:40, July 23, 2013 (UTC)
I also disagree with the "Too many <position>" like LiR said. The more the merrier! People want to have special privileges so they can help the wiki be anti-vandalised and just help. If you let them down then your pretty much letting the wiki down too. JasonThePlum talk ◦ blog 20:06, July 26, 2013 (UTC)
I believe that using "we have too many" in an RfX is not a justifiable argument, like Bleeh said. However, in the future, if the wiki gains admins/b'crats at a fast rate, I personally may feel a bit useless or not needed as we have so many others that can do the job for me. That is why I'd agree to temporarily closing down the pages beforehand. ~ Waikikamukow (Anyone wanna chat?) 22:45, July 26, 2013 (UTC)
- Sorry if I sounded a bit blunt in saying how I feel about having too many users with special positions, I just thought I had to speak my mind! :\ ~ Waikikamukow (Anyone wanna chat?) 22:47, July 26, 2013 (UTC)
You shouldn't think like that Waikikamukow. You are a good Administrator and a great user, all in all. If the wiki does gain enough admins/bureaucrats, both requests pages would be closed, simple as, simple be.
Back to the discussion itself, I feel a tad guilty and have decided that I should try and weigh in as I have myself used the argument "we have too many X" in a couple of requests. At first, I was planning on disagreeing with LiR's assessment on the matter, him saying that the argument that I said above was only being used to spare the feelings of the user who applied for a role. However, after some thought, I realised how wrong that would have been of me and I imagined myself in that position, thus leading me to think that LiR may be correct. The last thing that anyone voting on a request would want to do to an applicant is hurt their feelings, especially if they are feeling nervous about their request that they had just put in. Perhaps we should close the requests page for now, until the community can come to a decision and a close on this whole matter.
I personally feel that we should just close one of the request pages for now; that one being the Chat Moderator requests, seeing as the argument of "we have too many X" seems to only be used in a few of these requests. But, that is my own personal viewpoint, again, we'll just have to wait and see how this discussion plays out. Beds (parlare - da leggere) 15:48, July 29, 2013 (UTC)
- I don't really support closing RfCM at the moment, though I highly support increasing the requirements to receive mod status. Perhaps this would be a minimum activity requirement, say "you must have been active on chat for at least a month before applying." or something to that effect. I think the main issue here of too many people getting CM is that the standards for mods are too low. -- LostInRiverview talk ~ blog 22:22, July 31, 2013 (UTC)
The general consensus here seems to be that the argument of "there are too many <x>" during requests for positions should be avoided. Users voting in requests should not use this rationale when voting against nominees, but should instead vote on the merits of the nominee in performing the duties of the position, and reserve "too many" arguments for separate proposals to shut down specific requests pages. -- LostInRiverview talk ~ blog 22:45, August 14, 2013 (UTC)