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Request from representative for Bjo Trimble

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Good news, everyone! Earlier this week, our co-Founder, Harry Doddema, forwarded to me an e-mail from a representative of Bjo Trimble (not sure if he wants me to share his name). He has requested that he be permitted to add information and images regarding Bjo and John Trimble and the original Star Trek conventions. Here is a bit of the e-mail that was sent:

Bjo has appointed me, as a computer-savvy literate writer, to represent her on the site for now, and has asked me to put up some pages on your wonderful website Memory Alpha, all about her and John Trimble and the history of the first Star Trek conventions they started, the ground-breaking Equicon-Filmcons of the 1970s. We wish to provide a brief history, and detailed information about each of the cons, from the first one in 1972, to the cons of the 1980s she was involved in. Bjo will provide me with the information and I will assist her in writing the articles about it, and then put them on Memory Alpha. I will need to become an admin so I will have access and rights to the site, and will edit and maintain the information for her as needed. We will do all corrections prior to uploading the written data and pictures to the site. We wish to add pictures, photos, and perhaps diagrams to the site as necessary.

I told him that administrative privileges are not required for what he is looking to do and that his contributions are very welcome. I also informed him that he could expand on the Star Trek convention page with his information or create an off-shoot page for the original conventions. If he wants to create individual articles for each convention, though, I told him that might be a bit much and we (the community) would need to discuss it. Anyway, I just wanted to share this with you all and give you a heads up. Pretty cool, no? :) (Feel free to post comments, complaints, questions, or suggestions below.) --From Andoria with Love 00:40, September 26, 2010 (UTC)

Awesome stuff. Always great to have someone so connected with Star Trek edit here. — Morder (talk) 01:05, September 26, 2010 (UTC)
Sounds like it will be a great addition to MA.--31dot 01:48, September 26, 2010 (UTC)
Just make sure that you educate him on all of the requirements we have here (ie licensing and sourcing on files, etc) -- sulfur 01:53, September 26, 2010 (UTC)
I too cheer at the prospect of seeing this part of fan history documented. But I do have some concerns about how this will be handled; from the proposal I'm not sure if miss Trimble and her representative understand the specifics of wikis very well. The way I read it, they would like to deliver finalized texts which would then be uploaded like they would on more conventional sites, ie not to be subject to the perpetual refinement that is specific to wikis. I would suggest to either make sure that they understand well the whole "if you don't want your writing to be edited mercilessly" thing, or otherwise present the texts as an archive, similarly to the RDM chats. I don't really care much which, but please don't create some shady middle ground where I'm afraid to correct a factual error in an article about a convention because I might incur the wrath of a moderator excessively sensitive to anything that might possibly sour our working relation with miss Trimble. Like probably most here I respect Bjo Trimble and what she has done, but I also think it's extremely important that Memory Alpha remains a neutral rather then making the slightly biased version of events (which with no disrespect to Bjo Tremble every account by a single person will inevitably be to an extent) into our official party line. -- Capricorn 04:41, September 26, 2010 (UTC)
Dealing with this sounds more like dealing with the contributions of people like Mike Sussman than the RDM AOL chats. And that's given us some great info and worked out fine, except for one time where it looked like MA was accusing him of plagiarism. ;-) Let's just see the format these additions take first.– Cleanse ( talk | contribs ) 05:16, September 26, 2010 (UTC)

I have informed the representative of the need to remain encyclopedic and will inform him of other policies as our discussion continues. --From Andoria with Love 14:36, September 26, 2010 (UTC)

I share some of the concerns that have been brought up here. It seems as if the representative might not be aware about the whole "wiki business" - which, of course, is a must if we more or less invite someone to contribute. There can not be any exclusive right to an article page, and any images being uploaded should be uploaded as CC-BY-NC, or if that isn't possible, at least must be uploaded while granting explicit permission to use. Also, I think that we should not easily throw away our policy of each fact having some sort of citable reference, especially if whole articles are concerned instead of "just" a small bit of information here or there.
So, if we were trying to be totally fair, not only to any reader but especially to the Trimbles (in this case, or any potential "exclusive contributor" in general), it would be best to be very up-front about existing restrictions and tell them that, while we'd happily accept any contribution that stays within our rules&guidelines, it would perhaps be wiser to publish any sort of first-hand account in another medium first and then use that as a reference for an article here afterwards. -- Cid Highwind 20:36, September 26, 2010 (UTC)
I think Cid really hit the nail on the head with what I was thinking about this. We are a wiki first and foremost, and while I don't have a problem with us "hosting" content to be cited, as we have done with the AOL chats, it seems that it would be in their best interest to post it elsewhere first based on what was said. Of course, information is always welcome, and while I don't have a problem with people using themselves as the citation, any info added to articles should note that. - Archduk3 05:23, September 27, 2010 (UTC)

I and and a few others have posted information on MA which came directly from the source and was not posted elsewhere (in other words, it was exclusive info). I have confirmed that the source is indeed a representative of Mrs. Trimble. I don't see why a line saying "information supplied by Bjo Trimble" or something similar cannot be added in lieu of a linked external source, especially since we've been doing that for certain pages for a while now. PS: I have informed the rep of all the concerns posted above. --From Andoria with Love 06:17, September 28, 2010 (UTC)

A procedure that is and never was totally uncontroversial, has led to many discussions in the past, will lead to further discussions in the future and on top of that, might lead us a step away from being completely "accurate" and "definitive" each time we allow it. You know that, I know that, everyone knows that - and we shouldn't be blinded by the name of a possible contributor when trying to form an opinion about this.
Again, this is in no way meant to be slighting the Trimbles, but exactly the opposite. I don't want any "exclusive contributor" to basically be invited here, just to have to tell him later that his additions aren't really valid and need to be removed. That's unfair business. On the other hand, I don't want to constantly turn a blind eye to edits that are subjective and unreferenced just because there's some "big name" behind them.
Wordpress pages are a dime a dozen these days, so wouldn't it be much better for all parties involved if the Trimbles, or their representative, activated a weblog where all the subjective memories could be put, and then used those subjective articles there to enhance or create our objective articles here? -- Cid Highwind 10:40, September 28, 2010 (UTC)
Couldn't Shran just as easily open up a WordPress page for them? I don't see where that's different than having a source page here when we know (and it's stated) that this user is a long-standing member of the community with previously proven contacts who has been in contact with a representative of the Trimbles and was given this source material.--99.36.31.125 08:53, October 1, 2010 (UTC)
The difference is independency. The Trimbles could add whatever they like to their independent site, while we can pick and choose the facts that we deem encyclopedic and of interest. This is actually a win-win situation, because not only do we strengthen our goal to become an accurate, objective encyclopedia (and not a collection of subjective memories) - it also strengthens theirs of publishing their account of Star Trek history (without having to bend over backwards to fit some rule of objectivity).
Reducing my argument to solely "it's not a resource if it's on this site" (and thus the response "but we can trust all people involved") is too simplistic and unfair. "Citability" is a concern, but not the whole story. -- Cid Highwind 10:14, October 1, 2010 (UTC)
If all else fails, I can ask Bernd if he wants to publish the articles on Ex Astris Scientia, like we did with the Military References in Star Trek article. This seems to be a similar case. --Jörg 12:26, October 1, 2010 (UTC)

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