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Illustrated Encyclopedia
June 2, 2010 6:37 PM   Subscribe

Wikipedia is famous for providing multimedia on any topic imaginable. Founder Jimmy Wales recently attempted a purge on pornography, but then partially reversed it due to community backlash. Wikipedia contributor Seedfeeder is a user who provides remarkably well-done Creative Commons illustrations to topics such as erotic lactation, bukkake, and pegging. Obviously NSFW, and some argue unsafe for Wikipedia as well.
posted by mccarty.tim (55 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Nice link on "some argue". Well played.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:39 PM on June 2, 2010 [22 favorites]


In the interest of proper framing, let me just say here that I think his work is fantastic and exactly the sort of thing Wikipedia should strive to include for articles on sexuality. It makes it clear what the act is, without being overly pornographic (which can easily be accessed elsewhere online, obviously). Granted, that is a very fine line, but Wikipedia isn't a resource for children, and shouldn't be forced to become one.
posted by mccarty.tim at 6:39 PM on June 2, 2010 [9 favorites]


It might be good to link to the real meat of this discussion, although it is just another Internet argument.
posted by shii at 6:43 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


While reading the Wikipedia article on weasels, I found it actually had quite a lot of weasel words- "Some argue", "considered by some", et cetera. I added the 'weasel word' template but it was removed rather quickly.
posted by dunkadunc at 6:43 PM on June 2, 2010 [11 favorites]


Yeah, thanks for the help, Shii. I find it interesting, but I unfortuanely do not know how to navigate a wiki outside of searching for and finding articles. Thank god that at least was pointed out in an early comment!
posted by mccarty.tim at 6:44 PM on June 2, 2010


Also: Jumping jesus, those talk pages are completely unparseable. Even if you 'sign' your postings, it's still a royal mess.
posted by dunkadunc at 6:46 PM on June 2, 2010 [7 favorites]


The people who devote their time to making NSFW articles like this one are internet heroes.

Also, this nsfw woman looks a lot like my aunt.

Seriously, though. What's the difference between these drawings and photos of the same acts except that we can be sure the subjects of the drawings are consenting to the use of their image on Wikimedia.
posted by doublehappy at 6:50 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Wikipedia isn't a resource for children, and shouldn't be forced to become one.

I agree with the latter but not the former.

And yes, these illustrations are of sufficiently low artistic but high informative value to be perfect.
posted by DU at 6:51 PM on June 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


I was expecting something more like the Pioneer plaque couple amusing themselves.
posted by gubo at 6:53 PM on June 2, 2010 [5 favorites]


Amen that, dunkadunc. You'd think that Wikipedia, of all sites, would have a decent commenting structure.

And you'd be wrong.
posted by IAmBroom at 6:56 PM on June 2, 2010 [5 favorites]


Pegging? Oh.
posted by cjorgensen at 6:57 PM on June 2, 2010


There is an illustration for prostitute?
posted by vidur at 7:01 PM on June 2, 2010


I have to say, I don't know how I feel about the prostitute one. It's a culturally loaded innuendo in the sketch, and it's kind of an abstract concept to illustrate in an encyclopedia-worthy way.
posted by mccarty.tim at 7:03 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Will the people who use my library find material on Wikipedia that's objectionable, or unsuitable for children?

There is definitely material available on Wikipedia that is potentially objectionable, or that people might find unsuitable for children. For example, we include images of Mohammed, considered offensive by some, and media featuring explicit sexual activity. Over the years, we have received many requests to delete material from Wikipedia, on the grounds that it is objectionable to a particular religion, culture, nation, ideology or individual.

Wikimedia policy has never called for material to be deleted purely on the basis that it is, or may be, objectionable, and our projects contain caveats to that effect. We believe that individual adults are best placed to decide for themselves what information they want to seek out, and we see our role as making available all knowledge, not solely such knowledge as is universally deemed acceptable.
posted by box at 7:04 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


The photo on the page for Vulva (NSFW) is cropped and actually looks somewhat medical/scientific. But if you look up the source of the image it's this (also NSFW, obviously) which is a flickr stream of photos of what appears to be an poolside stripper party.
posted by delmoi at 7:12 PM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Also, wikipedia has been taken over by little dictators more interested in petty squabbling then improving the site.
posted by delmoi at 7:16 PM on June 2, 2010 [8 favorites]


From the wiki discussion (which is indeed difficult to follow), there seems to be several common themes.

1. Fox has something to do with this. "The move came as FoxNews.com was in the process of asking dozens of companies that have donated to Wikimedia Foundation -- the umbrella group behind Wikimedia Commons and its Wiki projects, including Wikipedia -- if they were aware of the extent of graphic and sexually explicit content on the sites."

2. There seems little support for Jimbo Wales, and a number of calls for removal of his privileges.

3. Many non-US users complaining if the apparent US centric puritan ethic being thrust upon the world.

4. Jimbo is actively engaged in this thread.
posted by el io at 7:18 PM on June 2, 2010 [7 favorites]


Also, wikipedia has been taken over by little dictators more interested in petty squabbling then improving the site.

That's actually the end fate of all non-profit organizations.
posted by dunkadunc at 7:19 PM on June 2, 2010 [12 favorites]


Metafilter: taken over by little dictators more interested in petty squabbling than improving the site.
posted by sciurus at 7:22 PM on June 2, 2010 [4 favorites]


Jimbo Wales is a tool. Wikipedia succeed despite him, not because of him. He hasn't accomplished anything else either.
posted by delmoi at 7:25 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


An article about the Wikipedia porn flap from Wikipedia's newsletter.
posted by nangar at 7:29 PM on June 2, 2010


Also, wikipedia has been taken over by little dictators more interested in petty squabbling then improving the site.

Yep. I made some edits to a page. They stood for a long time. Some idiot came along and "cleaned up" the page. Removed my contributions and a whole slew of worthwhile information on the grounds that it wasn't "noteworthy."

Now, I did violate one policy I didn't know existed (basically self linked). Fine, take that out of the mix, but a bunch of the other links were valuable. I asked him why, we went back and forth on it for a while, I took a look at his profile and the dude lives on wikipedia.

I know I can contest his edits, or just undo them, or put the information back (sans my link), but it's more effort than I want to go through.

The photo taken with my camera of Glen Cook is still up there though!

Sorry, go back to talking about the porn.
posted by cjorgensen at 7:31 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


He hasn't accomplished anything else either.

That's a bit harsh, isn't it? He only founded the single largest aggregated source of knowledge for modern society.
posted by Salvor Hardin at 7:31 PM on June 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


[few comments removed - take stupid shit to metatalk and don't ruin the thread please.]
posted by jessamyn at 7:33 PM on June 2, 2010


If Fox is going around behind the scenes trying to discourage Wikipedia donors, it really is time for a boycott of their biggest sponsors, don't you think?
posted by jamjam at 7:42 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Which pictures were removed? Was it just the linked illustrations? Or were there other items removed as well?
posted by delmoi at 7:46 PM on June 2, 2010


Why so sad?
posted by smackfu at 7:49 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


About 400 images it sounds like. Jimbo deleted a large percentage of the images
posted by el io at 7:53 PM on June 2, 2010


That's a bit harsh, isn't it? He only founded the single largest aggregated source of knowledge for modern society.

It was him and a couple of other people. And he didn't write the software either, he founded it when "wikis" were all the rage online, so it was a rather obvious concept. He obviously didn't do much of the work. Most of the stuff was self organizing. My point is that if he was actually some genious, and not just someone who happened to be at the right place at the right time he'd have been able to create some other products. Instead, Wikipedia is stagnating under a crushing tide of deletionists and people who don't want any of the articles changed, despite whatever problems they may have.
posted by delmoi at 7:55 PM on June 2, 2010


Agreed! Jimbo Wales sounds like a tool who wikipedia should ditch. That said, Fox is the one that deserves a paddling. Btw, AT&T advertises with Fox.
posted by jeffburdges at 8:02 PM on June 2, 2010


I actually wrote a little bit about this for another website. I'll copy/paste here.
_________
The porn story? As I understand it [as a sometimes Wikipedia editor] Jimmy Wales decided to remove the porny images you'd see on Wikipedia alongside sex-related topics, and images from Wikimedia commons.

Example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masturbation [nsfw, duh]

This was in response to complaints that Larry Sanger [Wikipedia co-founder] was making to the FBI about illegal images being on Wikipedia. This was a unilateral decision which was only possible because Wales has the ability to delete "protected" content from the Wikimedia Commons site. It appears that he did this sort of speedily because Fox News was on his case. Some Wikipedia editors thought he acted too unilaterally and there was a big to-do about this on the site itself. As a result of the extensive debate and general kerfuffle, Jimmy Wales ceded some of his superuser powers and to the best of my knowledge most of the images were replaced.

Further reading, an exhaustive list
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons:News_regarding_the_sexual_content_purge

Specific Wikipedia discussion
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons_talk:Sexual_content/Village_pump/2010-5-7

New policies that came out of this
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Village_pump_%28policy%29#New_Commons_interpretation_of_policies_regarding_sexual_content.

I was invited by one of the other editors to participate in a vote/discussion on what to do about Wales' actions but it wound up wrapping up before I made a vote one way or the other and I'll be damned if I can find that voting page at the moment.
___________

It's actually a pretty interesting story if you can get over whatever your personal Wikipedia issues are. Larry Sanger seemed to have started it and then it went to the FBI and then Fox got in on it. Pretty sure all the images have been restored.
posted by jessamyn at 8:04 PM on June 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


But god help you if you touch the pokemon pages.
posted by boo_radley at 8:06 PM on June 2, 2010 [5 favorites]


I'm not entirely clear just why an illustration of tea-bagging (and fellatio, and pegging, and gokkun, and...) is necessary. If you don't understand what it is by reading the description, then you're probably illiterate.
posted by incessant at 9:17 PM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


The Internet Perverts will draw pictures of absolutely anything that gets their rocks off if they think they can upload it somewhere where people will look at it.
posted by dunkadunc at 9:22 PM on June 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Isn't Larry Sanger the guy who got pushed out and is kind of bitter? Was he the one who wanted to create some crazy 3d VR encyclopedia? I think there was an FPP about it but I can't find it.
posted by delmoi at 9:25 PM on June 2, 2010


Anything Wales is against, I'm for. And vice versa. The guy is a douche.
posted by swimming naked when the tide goes out at 9:46 PM on June 2, 2010


It's worth noting that Wikipedia entry for Rule 34 has been deleted. I only mention this because it seems to poignantly encapsulate the exhaustive caviling on Wikipedia in one deleted article.

Also, because I'm writing a slashfic of Jimmy Wales and the 1974 edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica.
posted by Panjandrum at 10:38 PM on June 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


Pegging made me laugh.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 10:49 PM on June 2, 2010


That may be a sign that you're doing it incorrectly.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:14 PM on June 2, 2010 [13 favorites]


I think the confluence of pornographic imagery and Wikipedia's mission is the locus of all that is genius with the Internet. RichieX is an ardent contributor of homemade imagery; this is from an earlier version of his user talk page:
If you wish to show your equipment to the world, there's about a billion pages out there to do that. I however do not believe this to be the goal of Wikipedia, Commons, or any related project. And in accordance with Note: This gallery does not need more general home-made images of penises. If you upload a home-made photo of your penis, do not be surprised if it gets deleted. in the header of the Penis-Gallery, I will continue to delete home-made pictures without any encyclopedic use. Lennert B 17:26, 18 February 2008 (UTC)
Images despoticly deleted by Lennert B were primarily in the category shaved genitalia, there are not many male images in this category. Obviously Lennert B wants omnipotently keep only female images there. This is not a suitable or an equal way of handling things under admin rights. Richiex 13:18, 20 February 2008 (UTC)
Try to imagine "Note: This gallery does not need more general home-made images of penises" on a sticky note at the Britannica offices. You can't.
posted by fatbird at 11:31 PM on June 2, 2010


I'm not entirely clear just why an illustration of tea-bagging (and fellatio, and pegging, and gokkun, and...) is necessary. If you don't understand what it is by reading the description, then you're probably illiterate.

Well, why have articles at all? It seems like if they are going to be articles describing these things, having illustrations doesn't hurt anything.

I wonder if this is something that bothers people who aren't good at visualizing things. For me, if I read a description of something I'll picture it in my mind. The illustrations are very 'clean' and antiseptic, they're not 'gross' or anything. So what's the problem? Are there people who just don't see these things when they read about them? And if so, aren't the illustrations helpful?

I think they're kind of funny, but the illustrations help people understand what exactly is going on. If you think people shouldn't know, then why not just get rid of the articles?
posted by delmoi at 12:02 AM on June 3, 2010


Vulva? More like lulva!

I'm going to go upload pictures of jam everywhere.
posted by turgid dahlia at 2:53 AM on June 3, 2010


We haven't had a good ol' fashioned Wiki throwdown in what, two months? The beer Hammer of Glory is getting ready to make its way to Opening Tap tomorrow night. Deleted as non-notable hammer.

~~~~~
posted by fixedgear at 3:33 AM on June 3, 2010


Pegging made me laugh.

[...]

That may be a sign that you're doing it incorrectly.


Not if you are the one wearing the strap on.
posted by gjc at 3:34 AM on June 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


Well, why have articles at all? It seems like if they are going to be articles describing these things, having illustrations doesn't hurt anything.

Maybe. Maybe there really are some people who know about sex, who get the whole penis idea and the part about ejaculations and so on, but who just can't grasp the idea of someone ejaculating on someone else's face unless you show them a full-color illustration. But I would be interested to know whether other articles about equally complicated but non-sexual human activities are as painstakingly illustrated.

Does "bukkake" (the subject of a couple of the illustrations in question) get unnecessarily extensive treatment, perhaps because (my bet) certain types get a thrill out of editing articles about things that make their wieners hard? It has its own multi-section illustrated page.

So I looked up "skipping" -- something I think is harder understand and probably much more commonly practiced than bukkake is -- and came up with this:
A 3-beat, 4-beat, or 6-beat gait where a foot is repeated (i.e. LLR, RRL, etc. but there are many variations thereof: L,L,R,R, etc.) It is typically considered an expression of giddiness, but it can be used in the place of run when one limb is injured but can still be used (mild sprain).
That's it. And no illustrations.

But as soon as you start to think about Wikipedia and balance, you remember that the whole thing is built on a huge lopsided pile of fanboy obsessions that make bukkake look like a healthy interest.
posted by pracowity at 4:20 AM on June 3, 2010 [2 favorites]


The better content is in the Discussion. I love how people argue topics such as smegma, Lindsey Lohan, and butt plug...not necessarily in the same discussion mind you, but still funny.
posted by stormpooper at 6:34 AM on June 3, 2010


But I would be interested to know whether other articles about equally complicated but non-sexual human activities are as painstakingly illustrated.

It seems like there is a desire not to have explicit hardcore photographs, so there would be more of a need for illustrations in this case.
posted by smackfu at 6:50 AM on June 3, 2010


MetaFilter: a huge lopsided pile of fanboy obsessions that make bukkake look like a healthy interest
posted by swimming naked when the tide goes out at 8:15 AM on June 3, 2010


Are there MeFi subsites that I'm not aware of?

link?
posted by Hardcore Poser at 8:39 AM on June 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


I found pegging to be redundant and unsatisfying. Maybe I'll get the joke later.
posted by mccarty.tim at 10:08 AM on June 3, 2010


I understand that illustrations can be helpful in defining and explaining a concept or idea. Let's be clear, though -- nobody needs an illustration to understand that tea-bagging involves a mouth on a testicle. It's not like this is some grand, illusive concept that suddenly becomes clear once you see, "Oh, so that's what they mean when they're talking about a mouth on a ball." I disagree with those who say the illustrations are somehow feats of representation, descriptive without being tawdry. No, those drawings are titillating. They're wacky. They're weird. They are not informative.

Although I suppose I just described half the internet.

If you want informational sex illustrations, try the Joy of Sex. Those drawings seem to get across the concepts without seeming salacious.
posted by incessant at 11:22 AM on June 3, 2010


Pegging made me laugh.

[...]

That may be a sign that you're doing it incorrectly.


But your mum is such a funny lady.

:|
posted by uncanny hengeman at 5:37 PM on June 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


Perhaps it's odd, but I have no problem with the image of my mother pegging you to hell and backā€¦
posted by five fresh fish at 6:13 PM on June 3, 2010


They're on their way, check your MeMail.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 6:46 PM on June 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


Whoa! Those made my eyes bleed!
posted by five fresh fish at 7:18 PM on June 3, 2010 [1 favorite]


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