Grammar Vandal

We need a way to talk about this guy with WikiWords. He has been known as Anon, Nomad, BlueYonder, 217.137.*, and some other names. Anon and Nomad aren't WikiWords, and BlueYonder is specific to one ISP. GrammarVandal isn't exactly as accurate as would be PunctuationVandal, but it is easier to type and has been in use for some time now in other forums to refer to this individual.

What's the problem with somebody taking on copy-editing grunt work?

Nothing at all. Gnoming to genuinely improve Wiki is a noble cause. However, the individual in question rarely alters grammar, and almost never edits to enhance the content itself. He's known for an obsessive barrage of picayune and StupidLittleEdits to:

Then he injects these into active discussions or clutters RecentChanges with them, which obscures genuine contributions and obstructs the flow of discourse.

Furthermore, the GrammarVandal:

His uncooperative anti-community attitude clearly outweighs the questionable value of his efforts. As a result, he has been HardBanned by the WardsWikiStewards. See ZeroTolerance and AnonIsStillBanned for further details.

The SharkBot was created to revert the edits of GrammarVandal and other HardBanned individuals.

Sadly, calling him the "Grammar Vandal" ignores the most objectionable aspects of his editing, such as warping other people's words, spoofing UserNames, using DoubleEdits, and harrassing/stalking/badgering other users. Calling him a "Grammar Vandal" is like calling Al Capone a tax evader.

It has the word "vandal" in it, which is good enough. Nicknames are rarely thorough.

I wonder, what would it require to hunt him down and sue his ass off?

Most of the RecentChanges seem to be from SharkBot, Doesn't this defeat the whole purpose ? Perhaps edits from the bot need to filtered from this page to highlight actual contributions.

There is a one-to-one correspondence between edits by GrammarVandal and reversions by the SharkBot. [Not true, as admitted below.] However, reversions may be delayed by an arbitrary amount, which at times will cause SharkBot to dominate RecentChanges. Unfortunately, there is no means of hiding SharkBot edits from RecentChanges, but when GrammarVandal goes away the SharkBot activity will cease. -- DaveVoorhis

No, it won't, since it also reverts spam and most minor changes by others.

I'm sure reversion of spam would be considered a GoodThing by almost everyone, except perhaps the spammer. However, many of those are simply manual reversions of spam done by me via the SharkBot, because the SharkBot user interface gives me a set of effective tools for doing rapid manual reversions. I have, however, tried automatic spam reversions on AdderallDrug and on a few other one-off circumstances. As for reverting "most minor changes by others", that is untrue. Occasionally it reverts a non-GrammarVandal edit (approximately 1 in over 1000 edits), but almost every reversion is of one of your edits, GrammarVandal. You know it as well as I do, so don't lie. -- DV

Volume is irrelevant, as you've inhibited such minor edits, i.e., normal gnoming.

No, I haven't. Plenty of normal gnoming goes on all the time. Note recent changes to RealTime, CodeMonkey, KeyLanguageFeatures, and so on. It is only your abnormal "gnoming" that is restricted. If you wish to see completely unrestricted gnoming resume here, I suggest you leave. I'm sure Wikipedia would appreciate your efforts. We don't. Please go away. -- DV

Simply untrue - as NewRecentChanges shows. Your examples don't correct spelling, and the occasional failures you admit to prove that your software won't accept certain edits, such as this one, regardless of who does them.

No, my software won't accept certain edits, such as that one (until I allowed it), because you're doing them, GrammarVandal. Spelling fixes are fine, as long as it isn't you making them. When you go away, all edits will be accepted. Go fix Wikipedia. Leave us alone. -- DV

Simply untrue. RecentChanges doesn't tell you who made an edit.

The SharkBot and I don't need RecentChanges to know when you've made an edit. Go fix Wikipedia. Leave us alone. -- DV

Obviously untrue.

Whatever. Quibbling with you is pointless. Go fix Wikipedia. Leave us alone. -- DV

Why ask for the impossible?

Huh? Go fix Wikipedia. Leave us alone. -- DV

My PC can't handle Wikipedia.

Fix your PC. Even my 1998-vintage 400mhz notebook handles Wikipedia. Email me and I'll give you a 700mhz dual processor board, if that's what it takes for you to go fix Wikipedia and leave us alone. -- DV

[Ahah! We just make c2 not compatible with older equipment, and GV is history. Bingo!]

Oy! GrammarVandal! Do you want your free Wikipedia-edit-capable-motherboard or not? Nice mobo and fertile editing grounds for you; nice GV-free Wiki for us. Good deal, huh? Free 'puter, and Wikipedia's your oyster... -- DV

That's ShootTheMessenger.

No, that's a WinWin situation. -- DV

Your motivation is nevertheless ShootTheMessenger.

How so? I thought my motivation was to find a solution that makes everyone happy. -- DV

I suggest rather than let the situation continue as it is (it's destroying the wiki), we should see if a fund can be set up to hire a detective(s) to hunt him down and prosecute him for zombying (hijacking) PCs. If this is not feasible, then we simply let him make changes and live with them. If he changes the meaning of something, then volunteer Wikizens can either fix it or make a note, perhaps with some kind of marker tag, like MeaningChangeRiskFlag?.

Vandie seems quiet of late. Is this his/her Xmax gift to wiki, or did his aunt give him homework from 1,000 students to correct as a gift? This may mean I get my highspeed back soon when the address blocks are freed from e-prison just like the holiday special where Meisterburger Burgermeister frees the toys. Yeah, maybe there is a Santa! (12/25/2007)

Seems Vandie's back. Sigh.

The main thing missing is exposing an RSS of recent changes that filters out the sharkbot. Can someone do this please?

Feel free to do it. Or, you can use the FireFox RecentChanges plugin created by AndrewNelis?. Please see his post on the SharkBot page.

I have tried to bring this up before, but somehow it never gets taken seriously. This GrammarVandal person, is mentally ill. His/her only pleasure in life is to torture and harass, in a very immature and childish way. I'm sorry to say, but in this day and age when the mentally ill are not locked-up, and even worse, they have access to computers, sites like this one have to change and add some good security. There is no way to reason with the mentally ill, or to get them to understand commonsense things. Their minds are like a computer that has shorted circuits, and there just isn't anyway that it is going to work correctly. Time for some security like has been mentioned many times. This individual is either so bad off that medication will not help, or they are off their meds. The person is a nut case for sure.

I try to mentally place such people in the same category as "bad weather" so that I don't personalize the situation and get overly angry. Bad weather is something you just have to find ways to work with or around; there is no sense in "punishing" the sky. GV is indeed an annoying phenomena and hopefully this is a place that we can vent. GV is an interesting case study for computer security in general. On a larger scale it echo's the problem of martyr-centric terrorism: "my way or no way" absolutism. Comparing technology-oriented versus social-oriented (or combo) solutions is also a good brain stretcher.

{GrammarVandal is an ActOfGod?, eh? I bet he's feeling flattered.}

Or Satan.

GV/VK your little tantrum has not changed my conviction as to it being you. Just quit, and everyone will forget about it. Your tantrums only make it worse for you, and worse for all wiki users. So, your obsession with perfection goes nowhere, and in the end the outcome is the opposite of perfection. Wiki is a collaborative tool, with a large pool of users, so it is natural that wiki should be a compromise of perfection, not perfection. Perfection just can't be accomplished here, and it was never intended to be. Simple, you must not forget, is a form of perfection. Controlling your OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder), now that would be a step toward a useful form of perfection.

It's *not* "perfection", and that's part of the problem. Roughly 5% of GV's edits change the meaning (probably inadvertently), and thus damage results. It may be grammatically "better", but not content-wise. GV's moral calculation flaw is that he over-weighs the benefits of correct grammar/spelling over accurate content (content that accurately reflects the author's opinion). It's making 100 cars prettier, but 5 out of that 100 can no longer make left turns. He mentally down-plays the problem of those 5 in his personal moral calculator. Plus, it angers most authors.

Why don't you accentuate that 5% by identifying it or correcting at least some spellings or grammar yourself instead of just name-calling?

I didn't call anybody names. I did criticize GV's "moral weighting system" for this issue. If that is "name calling" for whatever classification system, I guess I'm guilty then. Attempts to understand GV's justification have failed so far. GV does not open up.

Also, I cannot know for sure the author's original intention even if I wanted to get involved. That's why I usually leave peoples' words as-is. If it's a big flaw, I'll leave a note and let the author fix it him/herself.

That neither identifies any of the 5% nor helps a dyslexic author.

Neither does GV's approach. Once I made a typo. It was roughly something like, "that is not elevant enough". They marked it such: "that is not elevant [relevant?] enough". They got it wrong; it was supposed to be "elevated". But I commend them for merely pointing out a problem along with a guessed suggestion. That's the proper way to address iffy text in my opinion. It leaves the original intact, yet points out a problem. It's the best compromise and one a Vulcan would select over GV's I'm sure.

Actually, that was marked as such by the person later referred to as GV.

None of the 5% are identified.

While going for a walk when I stepped into the BigBlueRoom, I couldn't stop laughing.. not because of my walk.. but because of remembering what ridiculous things happen on this wiki that don't happen in the real world. I visualized GrammarVandal jumping out in front of traffic and stopping every car that goes by, telling them that this spec of dirt on your car needs to be cleaned immediately, and that paint chip needs immediate attention! What happens on this wiki, causes me to spontaneously break out in laughter in public settings (degrading my professionalism and seriousness). GrammarVandal is the most hilarious, mentally retarded, ridiculous figure on the internet. He has put a permanent smirk on my face because of his lunacy.

Maybe someday they'll discover the source the overactive "anal gene" and develop a pill for it. The hard part may be getting the GV to take it. -- top

Try dart guns.

"GrammarVandal is the most hilarious, mentally retarded, ridiculous figure on the internet." (That statement sums it all up nearly, just need to add frustratingly persistent.)

Naw, just very very very very very very very very very stubborn.

{And stooooopid. How dim do you have to be to fight, endlessly, against a script?}

GV walking down the street:

GV (grammar vandal) is a seriously mentally-ill person who keeps crying out for help in this Wiki, but does not realize that through Wiki we have no way of prescribing and distributing the appropriate medication and therapy. I wish that there were some way to get this person the help they so desperately need.

The above is unnecessary name-calling in my opinion. Let's just state that GV is a major pain to this wiki, but stop at the point of general personal trait speculation. It's a bad habit. Maybe he/she/it is a nice person, but does this one evil thing as a catharsis. Ya never know. -- top

More name-calling. No examples of maliciously changing people's meaning have been given.

You don't present any evidence to back your assertions. Even if you did, health is not a requirement for using Wiki.

. . . mere name-calling.

Yet more name-calling. The timing of changes reveals nothing relevant. If you don't want to see changes repeated, you can make them yourself.

{Obviously, GrammarVandal, if you'd stop fighting against a script, the changes wouldn't be "repeated" either. GV, I have to wonder what possesses you to fight, endlessly, against a script. You do realise your efforts are futile, yes? Do you have nothing better to do? Are you unable to resist?}

GV, is back at it again, using multiple cookie names, and has screwed up edit history something fierce (have to use QuickDiff to know what was edited). Wish the hard-banned moron (stolen IP address user) would just fall off the face of the earth, and all would be better without. I have encountered lots of scum in my life, but this person appears to be the scummiest ever. Not a title I would want, but evidently... goes along with being a WikiTard...

There are militant people, anal people, and sometimes anal militant people.

I notice GV has been changing my handle from "--top" to "-t" in some pages, perhaps to make it consistent with first usage? I'm not sure if that bothers me, but it certainly is odd. --top

Actually, GrammarVandal has been changing your handle from "-t" on some pages to "-- top". SharkBot has, as usual, been reverting any changes recognised to be GrammarVandal. You've probably confused GrammarVandal with SharkBot because I've been running the SharkBot from a different host as of mid-December 2009. -- DaveVoorhis

Perhaps. It's hard to know what is doing what these days without careful IP analysis. It's a war zone. -t

GV, why not just mark the problems, and let the author decide whether they want to apply the suggested fix? To me this is a reasonable compromise. We can make a special topic tag to mark such problems and put the suggested fix next to the tag. If the author doesn't want to fix it or doesn't see it, then the tags stay, or perhaps have a WikiZen vote after X months.

ToDo: I want to add a See Also of TheRadBottleneck to WidgetsRepresentRelationshipsInTheModel, but it's stuck in a GV EditWar.

As of late May 2013, GrammarVandal appears to have become obsessed with retaining a former page entitled NovusOrdoSeclorum, the main content of which was deleted by its original author after discussion, and its other contributors either copied their content elsewhere or wish it deleted as it's no longer relevant. Shortly thereafter, GrammarVandal restored it and has demonstrated sufficient desperation to preserve it that he (or she) has sustained EditWars over multiple page copies, and inserted its content into NewRecentChanges. One can only speculate on the pathology that makes GrammarVandal insist on attempting to retain it. If he (or she) really wishes to retain it, he (or she) should copy it to his or her personal hard drive or -- if it must be public -- perhaps publish it on his (or her) 'blog.

GV sometimes does stuff to dick around with us, not because he/she/it cares about the content.

How about using a SicNote?

See Also: LegalRecourseAgainstGrammarVandal


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