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CZ:Election July-August 2013/Referenda/4

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Only the proposer of the referendum and Election Committee members may modify this page. Substantive modifications by the proposer after the referendum has been formally proposed at 'July-August 2013 Referenda' will invalidate the signatures of any current supporters, and require them to sign again. Comments should be placed on the Talk page.

Note from Managing Editor

Formal rejection of CZ:Election July-August 2013/Referenda/4,

As authorized by section “1. f)” of this Management Council motion, the Managing Editor “may reject a referendum proposal according to his own judgement if…in the case of a non-Charter referendum, it would produce conditions likely to violate the current Charter.”

Based on that specific authorization, as Citizendium Managing Editor, I reject User:James Yolkowski’s proposed referendum, CZ:Election July-August 2013/Referenda/4, which would permit account creation without approval, i.e., would permit persons to apply for and be given membership under a real name that might be a fake, fraudulent, or bogus real-name-appearing name. Accordingly, I direct the Election Committee to exclude the aforementioned referendum from the ballot.

See Talk page for my reasoning.

Permit account creation without approval

Proposed by James Yolkowski

A proposed referendum follows which does not modify the charter (see referendum text for details). Under Article 37, a simple majority is required to have this referendum passed.

To support the establishment of a referendum on this issue, sign here.

Proposed referendum


  • A continuous influx of new contributors is essential for the survival of an online community,
  • It is widely held that Citizendium is in great need of new contributors,
  • Potential new contributors may find the current process to request an account intimidating and so decline to request an account,
  • The current process to request an account requires a Constable to approve and create accounts,
  • There are no active Constables on Citizendium, and so accounts have not been regularly created during most of 2013, leaving those interested in a Cizitendium account waiting for months,
  • Citizendium is a volunteer-based project, and so no-one is obligated to perform any specific task or tasks,
  • It has been suggested that the current validation of a user's real name can be easily gamed and anyone who really wanted to sign up under a pseudonym could do so relatively easily (assuming that a Constable were active to approve the request),
  • With people more willing now than they were in 2006 to provide their real name online (many social media sites being an example of this), it seems reasonable that most people signing up will be honest regarding their real name and validation is not as necessary.

Therefore, Let it be resolved that:

  • The Citizendium community formally:
    • affirms that creating an account should not require approval, and that any person should be able to create an account automatically given their real name, valid e-mail address, and acceptance of the charter.
    • requests Citizendium's governing council to have the account creation pages updated in accordance with this change upon the passing of this referendum. If technical support is required to make this change, Citizendium's governing council is requested to find a technical resource to implement this change.
    • thanks all current and former Constables for their attention to creating accounts in the past.
  • For greater clarity, this referendum does not modify the charter, either the real names policy (the details of which are not described in the charter) or the requirements around user pages in article 8 of the charter; all must still register using their real names and provide a biography, and those who do not comply, may, as now, face sanctions as Citizendium's governing council may define, as permitted in article 35, point 5 of the charter.
  • For greater clarity, would-be editors may need to apply separately should they wish to request editorship.