Wikipedia page about restic

#1

This is exactly what I did. I wrote a really nice Wikipedia article for restic, and included every relevant and notable reference I could find. For example I had DigitalOcean and BackBlaze as references, as well as Filippo Valsorda, all three of which should be pretty notable IMO. But for some idiotic reason the reviewer (kindly) said this was not notable enough.

He did not pay any attention to the fact that I said I was trying to collect an overview of restic, and that there was already numerous such articles on Wikipedia, as well as pointing out that such an article (that helps getting an overview) is something that a lot of people actually use Wikipedia for in the first place. Pretty much everyone I know use Wikipedia for it’s summarizing articles, rather than as an authoritative source of facts or for notability reasons. Considering how many articles have less notability, and just a set of completely useless references, there are on Wikipedia, it’s just lame. IMO restic was notable enough at the time, otherwise I wouldn’t have written the article in the first place.

I deleted the entire article, even though I think I still have it somewhere. But as long as Wikipedia is retarded there’s little point in adding it there.

How did you hear about restic?
#2

(Disclaimer: I am a Wikipedia administrator – so you can consider me biased or an expert.)

The reviewer was following Wikipedia policy on subject notability. Once there is significant coverage of restic in reliable secondary sources, then it can certainly have a Wikipedia article. DigitalOcean and BackBlaze blogs unfortunately aren’t really considered reliable sources. We need to get into peer-reviewed technical journals.

Those articles probably shouldn’t exist, either. See “other stuff exists”.

#3

Chris,

I understand your guidelines on notability. But to be honest, it’s nothing but BS as long as you guys have a ton of articles that do not follow those guidelines, and a lot of them which arguably provides way less value than the article I wrote. If you are going to have guidelines, it’s reasonable that you enforce them for everyone, instead of for some but not others. The latter is unfair.

This isn’t about me being grumpy for the article being rejected, I just completely think that given the context of what else is on Wikipedia, rejecting this article, which would have provided value for users of Wikipedia, is counter-productive.

It seems that Wikipedia is more interested in following guidelines than looking at what value an article provides.

IMO, notability isn’t about high high-profile the sources are. It’s about establishing whether or not there is substance to the claim that (in this case) restic exists and has been in use by a relevant number of people for a relevant amount of time. All of this was covered at the time I wrote the article. Companies like DO and BB does not recommend or suggest or write articles for their users on how to use restic, unless it is established enough. One does not need to complicate it beyond that. But apparently that’s not a view Wikipedia shares.

#4

Administrators typically do not get involved unless an article is nominated for deletion. There’s tons of articles and administrators cannot personally review all of them, so we depend on the community to nominate articles for deletion if they are not in compliance with established policy. In a project this big, it’s common for articles to slip through the cracks if they aren’t noticed – this doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t also be deleted, it just means nobody who checks for such articles has found them yet.

It’s unfair, but it’s also reality. I refer back to the Other Stuff Exists essay.

This is a very strong statement made after a single interaction.

This is not an unreasonable definition of notability for software, and I believe that it could be met currently if there were reliable sources that made this claim. (See: Notability requires verifiable evidence. This is where DO and BB sources are likely to be seen as insufficient.)

I had a look at the article draft from January 2018 and, if there were reliable sources cited, it would likely have been mostly fine. (There’s a bit of POV but that’s easily cleaned up.)

I cannot use my administrator status to try to get the article accepted, especially as I am a contributor to restic as well. I would be required to disclose my participation here as it creates a conflict of interest, and recuse myself from application of administrator privileges. However, I can help you work on the article and give you some tips.

  • The biggest thing we need is reliable secondary sources: news articles, tech journals, etc. to write about restic. The more the better. This will happen in time and I don’t doubt Wikipedia will have an article about restic eventually, we’re just new to the scene and it takes time for us to get noticed.
  • Citing restic’s own documentation once or twice is probably okay, but excessive citations to restic’s documentation is perceived as spammy and and attempt to inflate importance. Restic’s documentation is a primary source and this should only be used to supplement the article with vital information that cannot be obtained from a secondary source. In particular, we don’t have to document every feature in the article.

I believe we are right on the cusp of inclusion, as the project is gaining traction. Last year was probably a bit early; this year is very feasible.

As an aside, I wrote an article some time ago about a software project I had started (and is now defunct). The article stood for a long time, until I learned more about Wikipedia policy and became an administrator. At that point I self-nominated the article for deletion for the sake of transparency, citing lack of notability of my own project. The unanimous consensus was to delete the article.

However, the article existed for years for one reason: I just went ahead and created it instead of going through the draft process. Creating the article as a draft was “the right way” to do it and resulted in more eyes on the article…


Here’s a few probably-reliable sources that mention restic:

This is likely sufficient to establish borderline notability, but a few more sources would be ideal.


I have restored the draft to a userspace-draft in my personal area. Feel free to edit here and improve the article. I will do so myself. Other editors should leave it alone while we work on it.

#5

I’ve split out the discussion about the Wikipedia page into its own thread.

2 Likes
#6

Almost did that myself, then forgot. :slight_smile:

#7

Yep, yet 100% accurate in this specific case.

Funny, so Wikipedia on the one hand wants us to provide references to the claims we make, yet when we do so it’s considered spamming? I was very careful when I wrote the article to not make any statements that I didn’t have a basis for, and this includes adding references. It’s sad that this is considered too much, because without the references I provided, I would have made statements/claims that were without a pointer to what I was basing them on.

According to the information I received when discussing this with Wikipedia people when it happened, the draft/article I had written was supposed to be entirely deleted and not recoverable. As far as I am concerned every single piece of that content I wrote and submitted should no longer exist. If you want to create a Restic page, start one from scratch and write it the way you would write it instead.

Unfortunately I will never contribute new articles to Wikipedia again, due to the way this was handled earlier. I will continue to make corrections in existing articles, but that’s it. The reason is simple; It’s not worth spending several hours of my time writing something like that up, so carefully, and then have it rejected. It’s a complete waste of time. And yes, I did spend several hours writing that up, researching sources of information to include whatever I could.

And this comes from someone who use Wikipedia extensively, so I do have a good idea of what articles provide value. It also comes from someone who has donated hundreds of dollars to Wikipedia through the years.