User talk:Brian McNeil

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Brian McNeil's talk page

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Have you Read The Fine Manual?
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Life is not an easy matter... You cannot live through it without falling into frustration and cynicism unless you have before you a great idea which raises you above personal misery, above weakness, above all kinds of perfidy and baseness.
Lev Davidovich Bronstein

#cablegate links[edit]

From sundry places,....

Assange legal pursuit[edit]

Next WL target?[edit]

Notes and links[edit]

PCS Presser[edit]




Youth Olympics Game Nanjing 2014[edit]

Hi Brian, I`m planing a 5-day visit with photographers and authors to Nanjing. Today i have only the question to you: Would you like to visit China for 5 days between 16. and 28. August 2014? --Ralf Roletschek (talk) 12:02, 5 April 2014 (UTC)

Wow! I'd love to visit Nanjing. I'm currently still looking for a new job, though. That could cause some issues, depending on what work I end up doing - if I don't simply go self-employed.
Have treated myself to a Canon EOS 400D since Strasbourg, which I'm still getting the hang of. Last time I owned an SLR was pre-digital cameras.
Oh, and the report I compiled from our visit to the EU Parliament is up as a Wikinews Featured Article Candidate; I used a couple of your photos on that, fairly-closely following your requested image credit. I just wish The Other Place (Wikipedia) would adopt something similar on images, it'd encourage far more pro photographers to donate work. --Brian McNeil / talk 12:49, 5 April 2014 (UTC)
Fine! Today i only search the team, i must make a request at WMF and then we'll see. --Ralf Roletschek (talk) 08:44, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
Don't be surprised if you have to drop me to get any funding application to the WMF accepted. I'll not go into the sorry tale behind their attitude to me on-wiki, suffice to say that I've a handful of enemies/antagonists over on English Wikipedia who'd scream donor's funds were being misused if the Foundation even bought me a cup of coffee. --Brian McNeil / talk 10:02, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
I have a Grant: - i need the best people for Nanjing. Diliff as the best photographer of Commons and you as Member of en.wikinews. The little projects need also a possibility to work, wikinews german is not very great, you must write in China every day some Articles. And i want, that you write some articles in english Wikipedia. Please go here: and take a accreditation to you with the Organisatin "Wikimedia Austria". Its without cost. You need a photo and your passport. All other later ;) --Ralf Roletschek (talk) 19:21, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
I pulled up the registration page this morning, and it let me click through to the second page stating it recognised "Wikimedia Austria". But, I failed to find the passport-sized photo I had — have now got another to use. Now, it's telling me I'd have to register Wikimedia Austria as an org - which has prompted me to defer this until I find out if it's in-some-way changed (Österreich?).
Workload you're asking for isn't difficult, apart from writing for Wikipedia (because of the sourcing fun, which makes that far-easier post-visit). I know the IOC are absurdly strict on images and video from actual competition in the traditional Olympics, and Paralympics; I'm hoping they're more-relaxed about the Youth Olympics, but would work on the assumption I'd have to engage a lot of the competitors away from competition and do interviews — which are far more-likely to garner readers/viewers (yes, I'll be bringing everything I have that shoots video).
Let me know if I've an issue on the application (since it no-longer auto-completes Wikimedia Austria's details). I'm taking advantage of being unemployed to try and sign-up for a basic Chinese Language course with Edinburgh University. I'm genuinely terrible with foreign languages, but I at least want to be able to say thank you to people (as well as know if they're swearing at me :P). --Brian McNeil / talk 15:35, 8 April 2014 (UTC)


I notice the sandbox didn't reset after I edited it yesterday. --Pi zero (talk) 09:57, 7 April 2014 (UTC)

  • I'll check the logs in a bit. --Brian McNeil / talk 10:02, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
Figured out the issue; hosting company relocated, and the crontab wasn't migrated. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:38, 8 April 2014 (UTC)
  • Further update on this: reinstated relevant crontab entries, and my Newsiebot scripts are failing to verify the SSL cert of Have raised a ticket with the hosting company for this. --Brian McNeil / talk 13:11, 23 April 2014 (UTC)

Watercooler discussion: Possible memorial fund?[edit]

Hi. I started a discussion on the English Wikinews water cooler at Memorial fund in Ashley-Nelson and Adrianne Wadewitz's honor?. I would really appreciate any feedback you could provide. --LauraHale (talk) 15:03, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

Newsletter copy for this month[edit]

Brian, Could you take a look at this newsletter item about the education program at Wikinews? It's at [1] at Wikipedia Education Program newsletter site. Thank you, Crtew (talk) 15:43, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

  • Looks good, and particularly positive, to me. As you might've noticed, UoW students are also in the process of submitting contributions - so a footnote on that might be worthwhile. --Brian McNeil / talk 16:21, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
Yes, I think the newsletter is PR and not what we do here at Wikinews! I'll change the copy to account for the UoW students but I don't know much about them. I'm trying to get a picture of my students by Wednesday. Crtew (talk) 20:58, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Wording near bottom of Cannabis article[edit]

Interested to hear your take on the wording/correction issue. Talk:Glasgow cannabis enthusiasts celebrate 'green' on city green#Discussion elsewhere. --Pi zero (talk) 04:27, 27 April 2014 (UTC)

Icon no source.svg

Hi there. You have uploaded one or more images to Wikinews in the past, but it is missing important information. All images uploaded to Wikinews require both a source (who made the file) and licensing information: anything that doesn't have both is assumed to be copyrighted and therefore ineligible for usage on Wikinews. Please check your files and ensure that your files fit the image use policy. Images identified as such include, but may not be limited to, the following:

Thanks, Microchip08 (talk) 10:15, 4 May 2014 (UTC)

Image licensing[edit]

Icon no source.svg

Hi there. You have uploaded one or more images to Wikinews in the past, but it is missing important information. All images uploaded to Wikinews require both a source (who made the file) and licensing information: anything that doesn't have both is assumed to be copyrighted and therefore ineligible for usage on Wikinews. Please check your files and ensure that your files fit the image use policy. Images identified as such include, but may not be limited to, the following:

Thanks, Microchip08 (talk) 10:15, 4 May 2014 (UTC)

"Advice on a story idea"[edit]

I invite your thoughts at User talk:Pi zero#Advice on story idea. --Pi zero (talk) 10:28, 15 May 2014 (UTC)


Hey, could you delete this? It's a gibberish spammer. Thanks. DragonflySixtyseven (talk) 12:48, 16 May 2014 (UTC)

Done --Pi zero (talk) 14:03, 16 May 2014 (UTC)

Arbcom election 2014[edit]

Reminder (as you're on the current ArbCom). Nominations are open for the 2014 selection. You may nominate yourself, or I'd be pleased to nominate you. --Pi zero (talk) 21:44, 5 July 2014 (UTC)

  • Nom away, I've been up to my eyeballs in audio and video editing since a charity gig last weekend. --Brian McNeil / talk 17:01, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

Resurrected: WP:NOTNEWS news belongs on Wikinews[edit]

I just noticed this: Just about anyone can close a discussion, and that one is quite the landslide, not to mention Jimbo's strong support. Has anything happened recently (in the last couple years)? I'm not involved, and I'd be happy to close it if it's revived, unless there's reason to think consensus has changed. Can't do the bot part though.--Elvey (talk) 00:22, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

  • Don't know if it is worth antagonising certain sections of the Wikipedia community in that way - no matter how well-intentioned actively highlighting the policy might be. --Brian McNeil / talk 17:02, 11 July 2014 (UTC)


Hi Brian, I have talked with one contact in Twitter Mexico. He told me that is possible verified the Twitter accounts of Wikinews, but we need one email like the The platform that you created months ago still working? And, are you (in en.wikinews.) interested in verified your Twitter account? Regards --MadriCR (talk) 23:44, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

  • I'll pass on that; I don't have access (or, at least not to my knowledge) to any enWN twitter account. --Brian McNeil / talk 17:03, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

Wikinews Photographer[edit]

Hi Brian, I have been contributing high quality concert photos to Wikimedia Commons this past year. See my Wikipedia user [2] page for my contributions. Does high quality photo conent alone qualify for credentials, or must one be a writer as well? I have a strong "prior track record" of having my photos published in newspapers and magazines. Peterchiapperino (talk) 23:06, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

  • We run photoessays, Peter. As I'm sure you understand, the niggle is meeting NPOV, so we're delighted to take a bunch of photos with only a paragraph or two of supporting text as a workaround. I'm partway through one for Edinburgh Fringe 2014 - with a small aside into stop-motion, much-hated by the spam filter: --Brian McNeil / talk 17:26, 18 August 2014 (UTC)


This is coming later than it should've (sorry!) You've officially been elected to the ArbCom for 2014! 3 cheers for you! --Bddpaux (talk) 15:10, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

  •  :) Let's hope it stays unneeded. --Brian McNeil / talk 19:50, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

An important message about renaming users[edit]

Dear Brian McNeil,

I am cross-posting this message to many places to make sure everyone who is a Wikimedia Foundation project bureaucrat receives a copy. If you are a bureaucrat on more than one wiki, you will receive this message on each wiki where you are a bureaucrat.

As you may have seen, work to perform the Wikimedia cluster-wide single-user login finalisation (SUL finalisation) is taking place. This may potentially effect your work as a local bureaucrat, so please read this message carefully.

Why is this happening? As currently stated at the global rename policy, a global account is a name linked to a single user across all Wikimedia wikis, with local accounts unified into a global collection. Previously, the only way to rename a unified user was to individually rename every local account. This was an extremely difficult and time-consuming task, both for stewards and for the users who had to initiate discussions with local bureaucrats (who perform local renames to date) on every wiki with available bureaucrats. The process took a very long time, since it's difficult to coordinate crosswiki renames among the projects and bureaucrats involved in individual projects.

The SUL finalisation will be taking place in stages, and one of the first stages will be to turn off Special:RenameUser locally. This needs to be done as soon as possible, on advice and input from Stewards and engineers for the project, so that no more accounts that are unified globally are broken by a local rename to usurp the global account name. Once this is done, the process of global name unification can begin. The date that has been chosen to turn off local renaming and shift over to entirely global renaming is 15 September 2014, or three weeks time from now. In place of local renames is a new tool, hosted on Meta, that allows for global renames on all wikis where the name is not registered will be deployed.

Your help is greatly needed during this process and going forward in the future if, as a bureaucrat, renaming users is something that you do or have an interest in participating in. The Wikimedia Stewards have set up, and are in charge of, a new community usergroup on Meta in order to share knowledge and work together on renaming accounts globally, called Global renamers. Stewards are in the process of creating documentation to help global renamers to get used to and learn more about global accounts and tools and Meta in general as well as the application format. As transparency is a valuable thing in our movement, the Stewards would like to have at least a brief public application period. If you are an experienced renamer as a local bureaucrat, the process of becoming a part of this group could take as little as 24 hours to complete. You, as a bureaucrat, should be able to apply for the global renamer right on Meta by the requests for global permissions page on 1 September, a week from now.

In the meantime please update your local page where users request renames to reflect this move to global renaming, and if there is a rename request and the user has edited more than one wiki with the name, please send them to the request page for a global rename.

Stewards greatly appreciate the trust local communities have in you and want to make this transition as easy as possible so that the two groups can start working together to ensure everyone has a unique login identity across Wikimedia projects. Completing this project will allow for long-desired universal tools like a global watchlist, global notifications and many, many more features to make work easier.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns about the SUL finalisation, read over the Help:Unified login page on Meta and leave a note on the talk page there, or on the talk page for global renamers. You can also contact me on my talk page on meta if you would like. I'm working as a bridge between Wikimedia Foundation Engineering and Product Development, Wikimedia Stewards, and you to assure that SUL finalisation goes as smoothly as possible; this is a community-driven process and I encourage you to work with the Stewards for our communities.

Thank you for your time. -- Keegan (WMF) talk 18:24, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

--This message was sent using MassMessage. Was there an error? Report it!


I'd welcome your input at, and about, User talk:Gownirony. --Pi zero (talk) 18:22, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

  • We've done "crowd-sourced" interviews in the past, so that isn't new. Someone finding that as a starting point is unique, though.
From constructive criticism of my own use of the form, it has the age-old tl;dr problem; it's an attempt to re-create what can be an engaging televisual — or audio — form of reporting using only text.
I'm going to assume nothing here, simply note that: if you want to bring up religion in-relation to gaming, there's a particularly-large can of conundrums wriggling around on a shelf somewhere. ;) --Brian McNeil / talk 09:39, 29 August 2014 (UTC)

Wikinews:Accreditation requests/Microchip08 (2)‎[edit]

I've closed this as successful. --Pi zero (talk) 22:47, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

More bling![edit]

FA....huzzah! Glasgow's Common Weal launch; 'Not me first. All of us first' --Bddpaux (talk) 21:10, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

  • Nice. Need to om, nom, nom, the Festival Wander now. :P --Brian McNeil / talk 22:20, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

Referendum 'trivia'[edit]

Be very surprised if someone doesn't try and create an article, so will collect a few items of trivia here.

First up, from the Highland Council Election Office's Facebook page/twitter feed:

  • "#Highland Returned Postal Ballot papers are now up to 35,148 = 90.15% #indyref"
That's 90% turnout - via postal ballot - before polling stations even open. --Brian McNeil / talk 10:05, 17 September 2014 (UTC)

Being bothered by User:Pi zero[edit]

He is bothering me with rubbish each edit. He is never contributing. He deletes articles comments sites here, although the article is existing. Articles under development are clean up articles. I might not write about RB Leipzig. My started articles have interest and he says that other archived articles are which from amateur clubs, university clubs or something else. He wants to rename my name here and is not rename me. My articles are written after the style such as about other proven football match reports. He is psychic unable to name reasons. Please remove him from the board! He neither productive nor socially competent or educated, for a globally representative on public free sites. --Nikebrand (talk) 21:42, 6 October 2014 (UTC)

  • You are being 'clueless' with regard to the job of a reviewer and administrator. Your user name implies you are a representative of Nike, which is potentially problematic. Similarly, the rambling comment I am responding to does not instil confidence in your ability to string together a coherent news story. --Brian McNeil / talk 07:04, 7 October 2014 (UTC)

Nice to meet you :)[edit]

Dear Brian, It was fun to meet you at the EduWiki conference in Edinburgh earlier this month. Thank you so much for shooting the event. :) I look forward to seeing more uploads when you have a chance. I'm glad I got to see some of your photography at dinner; you're very talented! I particularly appreciated the stained glass in the Tron Kirk and I really liked this police box because they helped to tell a story. I've actually added them (from my volunteer account) to articles on en-wiki. I also enjoyed your photo tour of the Fringe Festival. Most of all, I'm really grateful we got to talk about Wikinews. I can't seem to find that beginner's intro page -- "New to Wikinews?" -- that you showed me. Please redirect me? I did manage to track down that paper you mentioned writing with Professor Blackall, "Wikinews - a safe haven for learning journalism, free of the usual suspects of spin and commercial agendas". Thank you for that! I look forward to following up on how to use Wikinews in the classroom. Take care, AKoval (WMF) (talk) 15:47, 17 November 2014 (UTC)

  • Thanks for that! Some bad news: I've a dead external hard disk which was the only copy of video, and a fair-bit of the photography, from EduWiki. It would've been backed up onto another computer, were it not for doing the Guy Fawkes night protest.
Any sort of 'intro' to Wikinews should be in the template automatically added to your talk page (i.e. {{Howdy}}). That could do with a hell of a lot of constructive feedback, which needs to come from people who've not, or only just, got over the initial learning curve. --Brian McNeil / talk 21:47, 17 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Thinking back, this might-well be the introduction you were referring to. Alternatively, it might be this old essay, which mainly covers the basic format/layout of a Wikinews article. --Brian McNeil / talk 09:10, 18 November 2014 (UTC)