You might be surprised to learn that I am not a human encyclopedia of MMA knowledge. My brother actually does better than me when it comes to remembering who fought who at what UFC event, something I attribute to his steady diet of UFC Unleashed reruns. Personally, I turn to Wikipedia whenever I need to refresh my memory on how much Georges St Pierre got paid for his first UFC fight ($6000) or which fights were scrapped in 2011. I imagine a lot of you do the same.
But now the ability to check Wikipedia for that kind of information is being threatened. Some genius Wiki editors have decided that 27 UFC event pages a year represents MMA fancruft gone amuck on Wikipedia. So they’ve begun deleting UFC events and replacing them with incomplete and poorly laid out batch pages, dropping a ton of information in the process.
This wasn’t something the Wikipedia Admin Gods On High decided. It’s not something that was decided amongst the large body of editors and contributors that have made Wikipedia such an amazing resource for fans of the world’s fastest growing sport. It seems to be the work of three Wikipedia users who are hellbent on completely re-organizing all the MMA information on the site because they don’t feel it meets Wikipedia’s ‘notability’ standard.
Now let me be clear: Wikipedia has a boatload of guidelines that are pretty specific about notability, and most UFC events meet at least some of those guidelines. And there are other guidelines they don’t. Both sides have arguments based off the rules to back themselves up. But when it comes down to wiki dick swinging, the more obsessive the editor, the more likely they’re able to push their argument through. And right now a very small group of users is preparing to delete a very large amount of MMA information and history off of Wikipedia.
I wish at this point I had some Kony 2012 call to action that would let you know what we need to do to stop this from happening. Unfortunately, Wikipedia’s Byzantine and obtuse setup is so complicated you might as well learn a programming language instead. It’d be faster. If you want to see where the debate is being shaped, here’s the link to the discussion. It’s my hope that bringing this to light will alert people who know how to speak Anal Wiki Editor and get them to stop one of MMA’s greatest resources from being ruined.