Greetings. It has been quite a while since I have really done anything major here, for whichever reason, none of which really matter in the end. However, I feel that things need to be said, so I'd take this with a grain of salt if you don't care to hear my opinions. If you do, however, I kindly ask that you take a few minutes. Log out of RuneScape, turn off your music, leave IRC, and try to internalize what I am truly trying to say. Thank you.
Call me old fashioned. As I have rounded my third year here, I come to realize that I do not know how to describe "here." At one time, perhaps I would say that it is a little on-line community of RuneScape fans who enjoy each other's company and all volunteer their time to make this fansite the best available. Then, maybe something along the lines of a large fansite dedicated to providing accurate information for all things regarding RuneScape. Now, I don't know. As I look back at my past three years here, I can't help but notice a steady decline of friendliness and general friendships and help. I had, at one time, made several friends here. We were all happy to help each other out. Now they're all gone. I notice that things have changed, and while change is good, I fear it all has gone too far to ever be good again.
I like to think of "my time" here, defining my time as when I was active, as being part of a bush. Sounds weird, I know, but allow me to explain. If you look at a healthy bush, generally speaking it is quite rounded off, full of lots and lots of little leaves, all doing their part to make the bush complete and healthy. There is the constant growth, making the bush larger and larger, yet it will still retain the fullness and general shape. While some pruning is healthy, it can maintain its shape while continuing to grow. This is the community I enjoyed. Everyone was happy to be with everyone else who volunteered their time to edit the wiki and make it a wonderful place to be. While our editors were far fewer back then, and certainly policies were fewer, we still managed. Take my RFA for example. Take a good look at it, compared to anything more recent. I'm not perfect by any means, at all. But at that time, people were trusting. They looked past trivial crap because they believed that additional tools should be given to me because I had a use for them and was trusted enough to not abuse them. Did I make mistakes? Yes. I didn't follow every policy, and I still don't. But I was (am) trusted by the community. This was the norm, because we all knew that adminship was no big deal at all, and we wanted all the help we could get. And it continued on that way for a while. Our bush continued to grow.
Now let me jump us to today. Clearly I understand that growth and pruning are necessary, I won't deny that. However, I believe that we have grown so much, and pruned so much, that we have turned our bush into a tree. When we were a bush, everyone viewed everyone as equal, and we all were right next to each other the whole time. Admins weren't asked to remove green hi-lites, we enjoyed being sought out for help. But now, the tree. Its trunk is hard and calloused, full of knots, and from the bottom, a long, dark, hard road that you must perfectly navigate if you ever want to reach the top, which some people think adminship is. Only when you have been an angel for <insert time length here> can you be considered to have this great task bestowed upon you. For whatever reason, the community as a whole see's handing adminship out like it's some irreversible major promotion in which one must be 100% perfect to even be considered eligible. No flaws, if you have one, wait a few months and try again. No emotions, no mistakes, you must be perfect. It's sad, to be completely honest. We all volunteer our time here. If we try to do something for the good of the community, we all have to be angels in order to ever be given a few extra buttons to make it better. It's really petty, but sadly, a lot of the community members won't look past it. Why? I don't know. Envy? Jealousy? Narcissism? Who knows. Admins can delete a few more things and stop you from editing. When was the last time that was abused to when powers had to be stripped? Short answer: I wasn't even around when that happened the one time it did. The only other time was a different user who ended up asking to have them removed.
The truth is, this tree needs to fall. We need to get rid of all of the damn red tape and hoops and hurdles that for some reason people have put in the way just to try to be a better editor. Look at all of the questions people are asked on their RFA now. It's unnecessary. If we (bureaucrats) screw up, it literally takes 10 seconds to reverse. I ask everyone to please, take a step back. Read through the old yew grove archives to see how pleasant life used to be here. To see how the base of this entire community was formed. We trusted people from what we saw from them here. We didn't judge people on a sentence they typed out to someone in private. We're all human here, and to volunteer your time somewhere only to be scrutinized down to what you do in your free time off the wiki is pathetic. I ask you all to be more trusting of people, and know that we all make mistakes. If you don't make them, you won't learn from them. Stop holding grudges, stop arguing. Somewhere along the line here, we decided that admins and "regular users" are not on the same page. Now, half of the community isn't even reading the same book. And the other half isn't even reading.
I know this might seem like mindless ranting about the "old times," but there is an underlying message. Please, be a bush. The very foundations of this community are crumbling, and it is turning into an elitist playground. Look through the forest and see what this community can be again. People change. BTZkillerV did, and I was the biggest advocate of his removal here. I trust him as much as any other user here, and he did far worse things verbally than anyone else here has. Tell someone they are unworthy to help us as a community because of a few sentences offsite? Come on guys, we're all more mature than this. We're being weighed down by policies and ridiculous expectations and visions of grandeur. So much has changed in the years here, the bar has been raised so many times, that I have dropped the ball here. I juggle tasks in my life, and I have gotten quite good at it. But at one time, I dropped this juggling ball, and all I can do is stare at it on the ground, where it was driven by negativity, and hope that one day I can reach down and pick it back up again. But until that time, I'll be but merely a bird in the sky, watching over the tree our community has become, and hope to watch it go back to the bush. Where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Where people respect everyone and don't stab them in the back or demand years of servitude just to make them happy enough to earn a support.
Please, treat each other as equals, the one policy I like the most.
00:59, July 14, 2011 (UTC)