User talk:FrJohn/archived discussion 4

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God bless you

I hope that we can do a very nice site in arabic --Habib 19:23, November 10, 2006 (PST)


Fr. John, I published my article on Hebrew Catholics in the Orthodox Wiki portal for two reasons, the first is I couldn't log in the General Wikipedia and the second because it is related to an Eastern spirituality. You said you deleted it because it is not convenient for your site, i mean, you consider it not appropriate. So, where is the information right for your believers and anybody else? Where is the Christian spirit you proclaim? I don't pretend to alien or romanize the Orthodoxy, as i understand we are from the same Apostolic root. Where is the final period for a real unity? When until are the Latin and Orthodox fighting for little things? I'm a great admiror of the Eastern culture and its ritual traditions. I respect and support the diversity in the Church of Christ. I believe in the unity but not the uniformity. So, if you could see i look for the defined identities from the peoples.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Levikahano (talkcontribs) .

Hi Levikahano, It's not right for OrthodoxWiki because it deals with a Roman Catholic group. I'm not saying the group isn't important or that we may share many things, but this generally isn't in the scope of material that we would include here. I would encourage you to put it on a Catholic wiki, or even on Wikipedia. May God bless you. — FrJohn (talk)

Deletes and undeletes?

I'm curious as to what exactly you're doing. Are you trying to erase article histories to remove direct evidence of vandalism? If so, it makes examining the legitimate part of the histories somewhat difficult...  :/ —Dcn. Andrew talk random contribs 16:03, June 3, 2006 (CDT)

Book sources page formatting

There are HTML formatting problems on the Special:Booksources page. (after the ISBN number is entered) This once worked but now does not. There is no way for me to fix it, so I'll just report it. Andrew 12:57, June 13, 2006 (CDT)

I went ahead and wikified the page. Is there a particular reason why the html formatting no longer works? —magda (talk) 13:09, June 13, 2006 (CDT)
Hmm... probably has to do with the upgrade to 1.6. I'm out of town now, but I'll try to have a look next week when I get back. Fr. John

Name blocks

Are we able to block certain usernames from being used? Right now, the system of renaming has its advantages in the history section of vandalised articles, but the same usernames can still be reused - can we put, say, a '*vandal*' block up? — edited by sτévο at 21:57, June 16, 2006 (CDT)

I think it's possible, but I'll have to refresh my memory on this. Let me try to look at this later in the week. Fr. John
It is, you need this extension. Gregg 15:40, June 17, 2006 (CDT)
Thanks Gregg! That makes it easy. — FrJohn (talk)
P.S. If anyone has an idea what should be blocked, please send me an email.

Hello, Father

Thanks for the message. I'm a php programmer. I'm mystified by wiki, but I'll figure it out.—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Rightwingprof (talkcontribs) .


Thanks, not sure how much I can, or will contribute, but hey, maybe I will learn something. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Mmatga2me99 (talkcontribs) .

Thank you for the welcome

Dear Fr John,

Thank you for the kind welcome. Much appreciated. It's nice to be here. -Antonios 15:27, August 5, 2006 (CDT)


Thank you, Father John. I find it a pleasure to accept your invitation. I wouldn't do too well on handling theological subject, but history, etc. and sounding off on non-theological subject I can do.

I had been meaning to e-mailing you on the subject of sound (audio) lifes, but have kept putting it off. I have a recording of my father-in-law's choir (Victor Pokrovsky) that I recorded at Nicolai-do in 1957 and have wondered if you want to place audio files on Orthodoxwiki. I have the file in two formats, AIFF Audio file and MP3 Audio file. I know the perferred format is 'OGG' but so far I haven't found the means to convert it. The file is short, 11 minutes, but of course is a large, 112MB and 127 MB. There is a slight pause at about a one third point for a shorter version.

I can send the file to you if you have access to a means to convert the file, when I get to a high speed connection. I'm on dial-up. Or less I could just up-load load one of the two versions I have.Wsk 20:28, August 10, 2006 (CDT)

Hi Bill, Of course it's a nice addition, but sysops generally aren't the ones to do the heavy theological writing. Mainly they're just empowered to do a few extra things for the good of the order. Thanks for accepting!
You might not have noticed yet my very subtle announcement on the news page about OrthodoxSource, a new sister project to OrthodoxWiki (very much in alpha stage at this point, which is why the announcement wasn't more strongly stated). The audio recording you mentioned would be great on that site - it's exactly the kind of thing I envisioned it for actually.
I haven't worked out what to do with large media files yet. There's a few possibilities, including using a free third-party service like OurMedia. I think I'd rather keep more direct control of the archives though, so I'm thinking about using something like Amazon's S3 service, which is totally scalable. The downside is that I'd have to ask for donations to cover some of the (relatively minimal, at least initially) cost. We have room to grow on the server we're on, but I don't want to overwhelm things, especially if our media hosting grows, as I hope it will.
In terms of formats, I envision being much less strict than Wikimedia Commons - my concern would be less for openness of the format than for general accessibility. In this regard AIFF/MP3 are hard to beat. Maybe the easiest thing to do would be to email you with an FTP login, then you can upload the files at your leisure. Does that sound ok? Fr. John 21:50, August 10, 2006 (CDT)

Your offer, Fr. John, sounds very good. I received your e-mail and now I will send the file as soon as I learn to use the File Transfer Protocol (FTP). This is a first for me. The OrthodxSource sounds like a great addition.Wsk 20:10, August 15, 2006 (CDT)

Sysop invite

Why, thank you, Father. I'd certainly like to help. My technical/wiki mark-up skills may not be that great, but I'm willing to do anything I can. Just tell me what I need to do next. Gabriela 22:47, August 10, 2006 (CDT)

Thanks for accepting, Gabriela. You've got enough down, and I'm sure you can keep learning. I'll send you an invite to the Sysop list. You can look over the archives if you want to get an idea of where we have been. Fr. John

become an OrthodoxWiki sysop

Thank you for the invite Father John, I'd be glad to help when I can. I am going to be busy for the next few weeks, but then I'll be able to give it more time. Andrew 20:05, August 14, 2006 (CDT)

Contributed articles

I've forgotten - are contributed articles supposed to be within the normal OW space, or is there a special place set aside for them? — edited by Pιsτévο talk complaints at 03:19, September 1, 2006 (CDT)

Hi Pistevo, we're planning to move them all to OrthodoxSource. It hasn't really launched yet, so maybe we should just post it here with a {transfer} tag. — FrJohn (talk)

Dcn ASDamick?

Dear Fr John: I wonder if you know what's become of Deacon ASDamick? His user pages both here and on Wikipedia list him as departed indefinitely from the services; but as he was so active (I interacted more with him there than here, I do confess), I wonder what's happened? —Antonios Aigyptostalk 16:36, September 4, 2006 (CDT)

Hi, He's taking a (hopefully temporary) leave of absence for while. — FrJohn (talk)

Ah, I see. Well, as long as nothing's terribly wrong. From the on-line perspective, he's just up and vanished with no means of contact -- so one worries! —Antonios Aigyptostalk 17:17, September 4, 2006 (CDT)

Yep, I can see that. Thanks for your concern - he's fine though. And still email-able. — FrJohn (talk)

Primus inter pares article

Hello Father,

I saw that you added the Wikipedia source link to the article in question. I read the parts of the style manual regarding how to do that (besides copying and pasting the actual Wikipedia URL), but I still seem to be confused.

Also, that link:, also seems to result in a Wikipedia error.

I tried to import the article as best I could, my apologies if I erred.

Hellenica 22:20, September 8, 2006 (CDT)

Hi Hellenica,
Thanks for your work here. Good catch on the link. You don't need to apologize - you're just learning. Because of the licensing, we need to explicitly state the Wikipedia article as a source. Since it doesn't add anything to what's currently there, the current article doesn't need to be cited as an external link. If you don't have time to edit all the wikipedia-specific stuff out, and add Orthodox stuff in, just mark it with a {{cleanup}} tag until it's been fixed up. Again, thanks! — FrJohn (talk)


There is a user, Youte2 who is defacing countless articles, it looks like a bot. Hellenica 21:26, September 9, 2006 (CDT)

Thanks, got him. — FrJohn (talk)

Re: My e-mail address

Dear Fr. John,
You know, actually I thought about that myself, but I didn't consider it such a problem because I already get spammed up to the lagoon, what with the e-mail address embedded in the headers of my web sites. Fortunately, Yahoo! has made it very easy to clean out all that bulk mail with just a few clicks.
But you're right. Why make a bad problem even worse? Thank you for your concern and for making that change.
Sincerely, John Bockman

No problem, glad to help. Yours, — FrJohn (talk)

Upload problems

I'm having a problem uploading an image of the late Metropolitan Vitaly. I get an error message when I do that.: Internal error

Could not copy file "/tmp/phptpCoq5" to "/home/owiki/public_html/images/6/66/MetropolitanVitaly.jpg".

Thanks for pasting in the whole error message - that helps! I'm not really sure what happened, but it looks like there was a corrupted file under that same name. I've deleted it - please try again and let me know if you have any more problems. Thanks! - Fr. John
Nope, I'm still getting the same problem
Could not copy file "/tmp/phpkVAglv" to "/home/owiki/public_html/images/6/66/MetropolitanVitaly.jpg".
--Aleks 15:12, September 26, 2006 (CDT)
Hmm.... ""/tmp/phpkVAgl" is your local path? What program are you using to store the image? I wonder what would happen if you tried renaming the source filename to something more standard, with a MIME type that the wiki would recognize. There are MIME restrictions in place which prevent "unmarked" files without certain extensions from being uploaded. You might also type a different destination filename. Let me know again if that doesn't work. Thanks, — FrJohn
Nope, my path local path is "/home/sasha/Desktop/MetropolitanVitaly.jpg". This must be some kind of path on the server. I'm using Mozilla Firefox on Linux (Fedora Core 5). The problem occurs with any image of Metropolitan Vitaly. The images are all jpg. If you'd like, Father, I can e-mail the image to you and you can try uploading it.


This problem is now fixed. — FrJohn (talk) 09:54, September 27, 2006 (CDT)


Thanks! I've actually been away for two weeks, which is why it hasn't changed - I thought I put it on my userpage, but apparently not... — edited by Pιsτévο talk complaints at 20:17, October 6, 2006 (CDT)

Hi Fr. John,

Thanks for that it looks much neater now, okay this is a sad point and feel free to yell at me for it - now no one will know that I did it? as it doesn't list me as being involved/ a contributor in the page - now I know that as a Wiki user that shouldn't bother me as it's really all aobut growing the knowledge base but I guess I am vain and also I could use the brownie points! Sorry. But really I do like what you have done and it really does look much better and I uderstand entirely why you have done it, so please feel free to totally ignore my cribbing and moaning.



Father Bless!

Father bless!

Hello Fr. John, I found your link here via the discussion page at Sadly this Catholic wiki is being overrun by spam links and misguided attempts by Protestants to convince us we're all pagans. I saw that you'd made an offer to help deal with the spam, do you know if the owner of WikiCath is going to do something about it soon? Or perhaps I should just find another Catholic wiki =/

Anyways, I do love this Orthodox Wiki and want to see something similar for us Catholics.  :)

You humble brother in Christ, -Devin a sinner

- Dscherck 23:40, November 3, 2006 (PST)

Recent Changes

Not sure what the problem is - or the solution - but Special:Recent changes keeps coming up as an executable. — edited by Pιsτévο talk complaints at 05:42, November 4, 2006 (PST)

I'm using Firefox It's not even letting me go to a page and then load; I click and it pops up that Firefox is trying to open a "application/x-httpd-php" file from My RSS feed is working fine, though. — edited by Pιsτévο talk complaints at 02:12, November 5, 2006 (PST)
Still the same. Also, for whatever reason, it works fine using Internet Explorer. — edited by Pιsτévο talk complaints at 00:34, November 6, 2006 (PST)
Also, it works fine in Firefox 2, which I've just installed. — edited by Pιsτévο talk complaints at 00:52, November 6, 2006 (PST)
Not sure what to say at this point, except I'm glad it's working for you! I have noticed this problem with a few sites in the past, and I'll continue to dig a little bit and see it I can't find out anything more. Thanks, — FrJohn (talk)

Edit Throttling

Hi FrJohn, I'm working on an Edit Throttling Mediawiki extension. I've seen you guys have faced a lot of vandalism in the past. I tried to install Bad Behavior, but it didnt work on our wiki. We were vandalized again using a Move flood (lots of Moves in a short time). I've also seen BB denies some legitimate users. Have you been vandalized recently and what else are you using besides Bad Behavior to stop vandal bots and human vandals, while not causing inconvinience to legitimate users? thanks! --JohnK 18:34, November 5, 2006 (PST)

Hi FrJohn, thanks for response. Today I finished up writing the Edit Throttle extension and have put it into place for testing. I think it will work well, even for your problem:
Basically, the only problem that remains is when a human agent creates an account with a temporary email address and then blasts us.
In my ET extension, if a user is not on some "safe lists" (which can be edited only by SysOps like any Mediawiki page [just like in the SpamBlacklist extension page]), he will get blocked automatically if he tries to make more than for example 5 edits in 1 minute, or 20 edits in one hour (these numbers can be adjusted). Our wiki also requires people to login so thats also one help. Although maybe later I'll change this but with lots of alterations to make sure people's IP addresses dont become public etc. I did the login thing primarily so our IP addresses arent put out in public (really not wise of Mediawiki developers to get this idea of throwing out people's IP's for the world to see). I'm testing this extension and its working great for now. I even adjusted the Spam blackList so it only scans for spam, if a user is not on those safe lists. The theory behind all of this is simple: Except for WikiPedia, all wikis are usually edited by a small group of people. That makes it possible for this extension to do its job nicely. I might ask you sometime more detail on the other extensions/utilities you've installed - if the ET doesnt work well. If it works well for me after I've tested it nicely, I'll let you know if you would like to have it to (it will probably not be coded best, but atleast it works). I love the idea of these safe lists. This is perfect for wikis like ours, where a small number of people edit the wiki. For example you have about 2000 users, which is good. Its manageable and even ideal to have these safe lists. Even if a user is not on the safe lists, he can still edit, but more strict limits will be imposed on his editing, just to make sure we dont have a vandal at large. I even have a function in there, which detects lots of edits from people who are not on the safe list, and then it locks the wiki, allowing only "safe list" users to edit the wiki. This is useful if vandals use anonymous proxies with different IP's to make a flood that way, or if a group of vandals decide to attack a wiki at the same time. Safe list users get free tickets. Others have to be scrutinized. With the control of the Safe lists only in the hands of Sysops, its easy to control access. Doing that saves a lot of headache, where all we'd be doing is either fearing when the next attack is going to happen or reverting the attacks. There's another list "Frequent editors". That list has special people on it like Sysops, or people who we know edit the wiki a lot. To them, no limits of any kind are imposed. I'm excited and cant wait for our first vandal to attack to see what happens. Sometime I might ask you for advice for possible patterns of vandalism we could deal with. Our wiki is very controversial (means, a large group of people hate our presence to varying degrees) and so it was absolutely important to have these protections in place, otherwise we could not survive. All we'd be doing is reverting attacks if we werent protected so this will be very helpful for us. Because this is new, I'm sure the system can be breaken by some means or patterns ov vandalism and I'll see what goes on and adjust accordingly. So many other things as well can be put in place and designed, for example, I could limit the number of edits depending on the age of the user. If a user is only 60 minutes old (fresh user created), it could only do 5 edits and then further editing could only be possible if we add it to the Safe list. The process would be designed to be transparent to the genuine editor, but a quick road block to the vandal. We could even possibly limit IP edits. For example, we could have a maximum of 10 anonymous edits everdday just to keep things in check. These kinds of checks can also be created but for now, I'll stay with what I have and just allow logged-in edits. --JohnK 22:06, November 12, 2006 (PST)
This sounds very good, John. I'd love to give it a try. I like the idea too of being able to restrict by age of user. Instead of putting 1000 people on the safe list, I could just specify that any accounts older than 3 months can edit more furiously than brand new accounts. I don't care too much about the elegance of the code, as long as server load isn't dramatically increased. I'd be happy to use OrthodoxWiki as a test wiki for you. Happily, we're at the point right now where automated bot attacks aren't really a problem, and the occasional human ones get cleaned up pretty quickly. I could see ET as a way to further cut down on cleanup costs, though. God bless! — FrJohn (talk)
Ok great. I'm testing it out on our own wiki first right now and have some more fine tunings to do and then I'll probably give the script to you after I think its good and ready. The server load will be fine, yes. The script is very efficient. It basically only runs if a user moves or edits (which is rare on small wikis, or at most a maximum of every few minutes or sometimes even hours). If a script finds a user on the Frequent Editor list, it exits right away. My script actually helped reduce the load becuase it doesnt process Safe user posts for spam, so thats a big efficiency (the SpamBlacklist is a huge long list of possible spam URL's and certainly for example, we dont need established editors' posts being monitored for spam. Thats ridiculous and wastes server resources). So you're right then, its the new accounts that are always a problem. I'll fine tune and get back you sometime. If possible could you give me some links where I can see where vandalism took place on your wiki here? Then I can incorporate those behaviors into the script if possible.
I'm also trying to make it so that all the parameters (e.g. minimum user age: 3 months) can be adjusted easily on the wiki, without need for us to get into PHP and FTP, and then all we need is to login and do these changes. Also I plan to try to introduce some sort of emergency button that halts editing from users not on our safe lists, and also another button which halts all editing. This can be helpful in the worst situation where there's lots of flooding going on and we're not sitting on our PC with access to the server code. Of course the automatic blocks are important. If we're not at our PC, we dont want to come back and find all our pages vandalized (like I experienced two times) and since we're not always at the PC, we want the auto blocks to take care of these things. I'll be fine tuning the script in the coming days and weeks for these kinds of features. Since vandalism is not a problem for you right now, I guess you wouldn't need the script in an emergency, correct? So I'll just fine tune and make it bug free to make sure it works, before giving it to you. If you'd still like a copy, let me know, however, there may be some bugs there that I havent caught so I would say you could wait a little before testing it out on your wiki. Lets see what happens today. The vandal usually strikes after 24 hours of opening up the wiki so I expect some thing caught in the trap if that script works. Meanwhile if you have any suggestions for what this script could do, feel free to propose any ideas that you think will be effective in reducing vandalism while least inconveniencing genuine users.--JohnK 15:28, November 13, 2006 (PST)
FrJohn, also, what kind of automatic restrictions do you think should apply to users not older than 3 months? Posts/day limit? Links limit? I'll be looking forwarding to seeing your vandalism examples so I can observe. Another thing, do you have a link for the single user IP extension? The one which enforces one user registration per IP.--JohnK 04:29, November 15, 2006 (PST)
Hi John, Sorry for the delay here. What I think would be most useful and complement what some of the other extensions do would be edit/post limits per hour and per day, customizable for each wiki, and able to be tweaked by age of account. That sounds good. Links haven't really been a problem for us since we put in "bad behavior" - the spam-bots go elsewhere, but I can imagine this being helpful in some situations. I don't think an extension to enforce one account per IP is a good idea - there are too many folks with shared computers or dynamic IPs out there. I use the espionage extension for this purpose - just to cross check any suspicious accounts to see if there's multiple per IP. Sincerely yours, — FrJohn (talk)
Thanks. I already have a function that calculates the age of a user, so I can easily get that into the system. What do you think would be good limits on the number of edits and the age too? I can create multiple levels of protection as well (e.g. 3 months, 6 months, 9 etc) and assign edit limits to each "age" level. There's no limit to what we can do, maybe just your idea of the 3 months is good. My extension has become quite customized although yes its as simple as adding the extension include in the LocalSettings.php. There are many things which i can turn into "options" that each wiki can customize itself with. My next step is trying to hide the page on the wiki which will hold all our variables (edit limits etc). I dont want hackers to figure out the limits otherwise they'll try to exploit the system and although it will be an added nuisance, its just better that the Variables page is out of public view. its meant to be an Admin only page. For now I'm still testing it and refining it as I go along. Every few days I make an small improvement in it.--JohnK 18:01, November 17, 2006 (PST)
Hi John, Hmm... Since we haven't had too many problems lately, I'd want something that wouldn't really get in people's way - like 4-5 edits/min, 10+ edits in 5 mins or 20 edits/hour for users under 3 months. I don't think it's needs to have too many levels - just one for new users and one for older users. For other wikis that don't require accounts or email confirmation, these features might eb more useful. I also don't think it would necessarily need a wiki page - I think many MediaWiki sysops will be used to tweaking settings in a file, as long as the documentation is clear. Thanks, — FrJohn (talk)
I can do that easily. I just need to find a way to hide a page from the public view so only sysops can see/edit the system Varaibles page. After that I can make it customizable through the edit page. I like the idea of being able to edit it through the wiki. That way we dont have go in, edit and upload through FTP. Do you know some PHP? I could send you the code and you could edit it as you like, although I havent put in the age check yet.--JohnK 13:40, November 18, 2006 (PST)
See though, your proposal can break the system. A hacker could register, wait for 3 months and then flood. Thats why I believe the safe lists is a good idea. Either that, or apply limits to _everyone_, regardless. We may _adjust_ the limits for users older than 3 months, that would be better than not having any limits at all for possibly a hacker who registered and waited for 3 months. The limits may be alarming at first, but if you look at recent changes, people really dont edit more than what you said, 5 posts/minute, e.g. I used my age function now but I commented it out, thinking that this can break the system. The "no limits" should _only_ be applied to people who we know for sure, will never vandalize (unless their passwords are stolen, but this danger exists for anything, not just a wiki so it has to be disregarded). If I put in a check that puts higher editing limits for users older than 3 months, that sounds reasonable, but not to remove the limits altogether. What i will do is put such a limit there, but it will be up to you. You can set the age limits for "old" users so high, that its practically impossible to break them my human editing, so it will basically amount to "no limits". Others like me will bring down the limits for every user regardless, to be safe.
Do you know of any good way to hide a page so only sysops can see/edit it?--JohnK 14:38, November 18, 2006 (PST)

Hi John, You have a point there. I guess we've dealt with this by using bad behavior, which is effective against bots, and giving sysops the ability to ban users and IP's. In the context of our active community, this has worked reasonably well. We also have a "mass delete" extension installed which allows us to delete all new pages created by a user at once. Even with all fo this, I see a good. place for edit limits. There will certainly be different needs on different wikis. A safelist seems like a good idea too. As for how to hide a page, I don't know myself, but there are some good models out there. I think, e.g. of the "Last User Login" or "UserScore" extension, as well as many others. You can default to the sysop of bureaucrat user flag, or create a custom user group... — FrJohn (talk)

hey FrJohn, hah! We had out first vandal caught last night. By the time the roach started to wreck havoc, it was 4am in the morning my time so there would be no way I could have stopped it. After 6 edits, it was automatically blocked. Its IP was blocked automatically by mediawiki's default system for 24 hours so that prevented his other nick from doing damage, although my own protection would have blocked the IP anyway if it had gotten more edits from that IP. The way it got triggered is yes, it did too many edits in a certain amount of time. I have a block set even for a 72 hour monitoring. This is great. Although so much more can be done e.g.:

  1. log of activity
  2. Clear specificed blocks
  3. various options like: Age limit monitoring (like you said)
  4. Automatic rollback (that would be awesome)
  5. Being able to adjust variables and options on the wiki - no need to go into FTP. This is helpful when somoene is installing the system and testing it for their own wiki.

Some error checking needs to be done too.

One big cool thing about this extension is, it has 3 levels of checks:

  1. Ban by Username (too many edits coming a username). Next level, if that doesnt stop it:
  2. Ban by IP (too many edits coming from an IP. Useful if multiple usernames from the same IP doing the damage - this is only limited to fast edits which break the throttle limit). If the IP block doesnt stop it, check next limit:
  3. Halt all editing from "Unsafe" users (users not present on our Safe lists, which really means new users on the wiki whom we dont know anything about yet). This is useful for example, if its a flood of vandals targetting the wiki at the same time.

So this is really fool proof. Each level has a higher limits than the previous level, so its triggered only if needed. Plus, the Safe users get free tickets and higher limits. The "Frequent" editors get no limits at all. I say if a Vandal was clever enough to make himself look like a real editor, it would be worth undoing all his damage at some point since he had made some contributions. The likelyhood of that happening is real low, I mean no one would go through the trouble of appearing like a genuine editor, only to get in the Frequent users list and then take his chance to wreck havoc. Even if he did, we'll atleast have his good edits after we've restored the wiki and reverted the edits.

I only had do to 3 rollbacks, took me a minute. More improvements I believe will come as the system is improved and tested like last night. A lot of options can be put in it. I'll work on this stuff more, I dont want to release it right now, although if you really need a copy right now, let me know and I'll make arrangements. Do you have any examples of recent vandalism? If you could give me a few links to vandalism done on your wiki in the past, I can learn from that behavior and adjust my extension. And oh again, Bad behavior might not have stopped the vandalism last night. It failed to stop it once and it denies genuine users, so I've disabled it since I had the new protection which has worked perfectly. I'm pleased, to say the least. Our wiki would have been ravaged by the time I woke up, had the protection not been there. And its pretty silly that Mediawiki doesnt have these protections by default. By the way, I get a Javascript error in your website here when the Edit box loads. It might have to do something with the little "make a map" thing. What is that? I'd like to see a sample of possible, it might be useful for our wiki too. Also, the mass delete sounds good. Whats the name of that extension? I see that your CSS file doesnt show anything, yet it looks like you're editing it. Does this mean the content is hidden from other users, but only you can see and edit it? If so, this could be useful for the Variables page I want to make. Looks like you're having a lot of traffic right now (which is good), the site was responding slower.--JohnK 07:10, November 20, 2006 (PST)

Hi John, That's great that you've got it up and running and it's functioning well. I hope it helps some wiki-sysops gain control of their sites again! You can find the "Mass delete" extension here. I've been having some trouble with Javascript lately - and just disabled the GoogleMaps extension (again) for the reason you mentioned. I expect Monobook.css and js are protected. You can edit your own user versions though. Best wishes, — FrJohn (talk)

Help Editing page

FrJohn, I do not know if you are looking at this, but I think that the Help:Editing page has a frame problem. The left menu gets loaded with the text on the right. - Andrew 08:09, November 8, 2006 (PST)

Weird! Thanks for the heads up. — FrJohn (talk)

Featured Article - Episcopi vagantes

Wasn't terribly happy with the pic that I used - that one was used because Abp Aftimios is the source of a number of "Orthodox" episcopi vagantes. Would be very happy if a suggestion of a more appropriate photo/picture could be made. — edited by Pιsτévο talk complaints at 16:34, November 24, 2006 (PST)

Romanian diocese in OCA, vs. Romanian Archdiocese

Bless me father John,

I understand very well your position and arguments concerning the modification I made in the article about ROEA. At this moment I don't have time to look for a reference for the assertion I made. However, this is a well-known fact in the Romanian community.

I presume that the author took the "argument" with the WW II as a cause for the staying of bishop Policarp in Romania from one of the official histories of ROEA.

However, this is a very weak argument, because Romania entered in the WW II only in 1941, after 2 years.

Between us, the real reason was the political pressure made by a leftist group in DC, on behalf of the dean J. Trutza's group, who was disturbed by the "monarchical" leadership of Bishop Policarp. The group started to "claim" his bishop only in 1946, when the communists forbade him to come to USA.

Moreover, I don't understand why you erased the the assertion regarding the canonicity of the 3 ucrainian bishops. This is so well-known by everybody (the 10-year anniversry book of OCA, edited by Fr Alexander Schmeman makes a clear reference to this fact, by the way), and even confirmed by the following text. I would also like to get an explanation for the delay of one year between the deal between ROEA and Metropolia, and the re-ordiantion of Bp. Trifa.

My opinion is that, if you want to be consistent, you have to erase the hole article, asking for independent references.

Yours in Christ,

deacon Ioan

Hi Deacon Ioan, Thanks for your explanations. I am not very familiar with the situation. I think what worried me were the vague assertions without much detail... some "communist group", "uncanonical"... I changed the part about the uncanonical bishops in the Ukraine too becuase this needs more detail - the Ukraine, as a border-land, has often been a canonical mess. Which group were these bishops in, and what were the circumstances of the ordination? By simply citing them as uncanonical and saying syaing which group they belonged to, and so on, it makes the impression that the OrthodoxWiki article is arguing against the legitimacy of the current church. We can certainly document disputes, it wouldn't be our place to take a position on this (unless this was something accepted across Orthodox jurisdictions worldwide). Maybe all of this material could be put on the associated talk page for now, until more detail is collected? Thanks for your work here, — FrJohn (talk)

Articles on WCC and NCC

Father, bless.

I was looking today at the article on Ecumenism and noticed that there are links for the WCC and the NCC. The WCC article is a stub with a single link. I'm wondering if these two possible articles have a "direct connection" (per the Style Manual to Orthodoxy. It seems to me that any information about either body could be included as a section in the Ecumenism article. To give some scope: It's been two years since the creation of the WCC article, and all we have is a single link. What think you? --Basil 10:56, January 4, 2007 (PST)

Hi Basil, I think I was the one who created them a long time ago. My hope was that each would offer a history of Orthodox involvement in the organization - there is a lot to say! But I think you'e right - if you want to consolidate the material in the ecumenism article, I think that would be good. We can "branch off" (!) the article again if someone wants to do the work on it. Thanks for writing, — FrJohn (talk)
Based on FrAndrew's input and yours, I have made the WCC article and the NCC article redirects to Ecumenism. See talk page for the WCC article. --Basil 15:36, January 4, 2007 (PST)
Many thanks Father John.:) (re:Kollyvades article)
No worries, I agree completely. Since I only had a small amount of infomation on that subject from another Orthodox website, I thought it might be better just to list the subject to make it known and let someone else continue, but I see your point and I agree completely. Will try to do a little research when i have some time and redo the article! Much appreciated. --Chris

OrthodoxWiki en español

Dear father John:

I'm interested in colaborate in this wiki, but starting an OrthodoxWiki in spanish (i'm Chilean) I hope that we can do a very nice site

God bless you

In Christ --Alstradiaan 16:15, February 2, 2007 (PST)

PD: Excuse me, my english is awful


FrJohn, will you please go to my wiki wikireligion and edit it some. Also do you mind if I take content from this wiki and put it there. I have a link on my user page. God bless. --Sir James Paul 15:28, February 5, 2007 (PST)


I agree with you. You have to remember we are a new wiki. We are talking about what our policies are going to be right now. Have a nice week and god bless. --Sir James Paul 17:32, March 8, 2007 (PST)


LOL, sorry, I realized that immediately after I posted. I was just so outraged by the picture that I started clicking and typing as fast as I could and accidentally hit the enter key before I was even done with the comment. The end was supposed to say, "....Jesus Christ article." Otherwise I would have deleted the specifics upon further consideration. Whoops! Gabriela 19:38, March 10, 2007 (PST)


Dear Fr John

thank you for your reply

i'm a bit reluctant to contribute in a main article because my personal style of writing is not quite what an encyclopaedic entry suppose to be. but i would be really happy to write and to add my writings in the project as annexes, or other suplementary material. the main obstacle for that is time and an over-sensitivity for conceptual transparency (my frail knowledge of english language makes the things more difficult.) anyhow, i hope i will be able to help this really blessed project.

your blessing

vassili psyllis

Vassilip 09:03, March 11, 2007 (PDT)


If there is ever any outbreaks of vandalism here feel free to contact me at wikipedia. My User name is Sir james paul there. Have a nice week and may god bless you :) --Sir James Paul 19:51, March 13, 2007 (PDT)

Your deleted image(s)

Hello! One or more images which you uploaded has been deleted in according with OrthodoxWiki policy, most likely because you did not provide an appropriate tag for it.

If you feel that this deletion was in error, you may upload the image again, giving it the appropriate tag indicating that the image is legal for OrthodoxWiki to use.

To check which images may have been deleted, take a look at your upload log and look for red links.

Thank you for your contributions! —Fr. Andrew talk contribs 12:06, March 16, 2007 (PDT)


Somehow, that cursed rounded-edge skin suddenly took over my interface!  :) Any way I can get back my nice, square edges again? —Fr. Andrew talk contribs 12:10, March 16, 2007 (PDT)

Hey you Fr. A - your User:ASDamick/monobook.css looks good. Maybe your browser chached the css file before you logged in? Try a hard refresh (shift+refresh) and see what happens! — FrJohn (talk)
I tried that a few times, but to no avail. But now I notice it's back to how it should be. (BTW, I stay logged in all the time.) —Fr. Andrew talk contribs 12:38, March 16, 2007 (PDT)

Orthodoxwiki in Serbian

Father, I would like to start Orthodoxwiki in Serbian. Could you help me.

Dear Ddpbf, This is great news, and I would be very happy to facilitate an OrthodoxWiki in Serbian! Have you looked at OrthodoxWiki:Localization? Basically, we'd need to have some of the basic structural pages translated first. Maybe some of your fellow seminarians would be able to help also? If you can commit to this, I will set up a Serbian-language wiki installation for you to start on. God bless, — FrJohn (talk)
I will be able to do this but it will tak a time.--Ddpbf 07:21, March 26, 2007 (PDT)
I totally understand. Give me a couple days to get a installation up and running for you, and I will make you and admin and you can work on the live site. We'll announce it as an "alpha" project until the translations are done. You can work on it as you are able. Does that sound good? — FrJohn (talk)

Serbian Orthodoxwiki

It sound great. Which pages must be translated first. I will start tomorrow with God's help.--Ddpbf 09:18, March 26, 2007 (PDT)

Great! The most important thing to start with I think is OrthodoxWiki:Copyright. You can skip some of the history about the "Revised" stuff, but the most important thing to get across, especially for people that aren't familiar with Wikipedia, is that by posting content, they are agreeing to license their work under a dual GFDL/CC license.
The "click through language" that a user sees whenever they post something should also be changed to reflect our policy. This can be found at MediaWiki:Copyrightwarning - you'll have admin access to be able to edit this on the new site. Let me know if you have any questions about this!
Beyond this, I'd start with the OrthodoxWiki:Disclaimer and the OrthodoxWiki:Privacy_policy, and the the OrthodoxWiki:About page and the welcome text on the main page. As admin of this wiki, you'll have to have a good understanding of how templates work (such as the Welcome template) - I imagine there'd be some documentation about this on the Serbian Wikipedia. You should also know about InterWiki links (you'll be able to edit these too).
Hope that helps! Let me know fi you have any more questions, and feel free to email me directly. I'll be sending you an invite to the OrthodoxWiki admin email list as well. — FrJohn (talk) 19:45, March 26, 2007 (PDT)
Are you good at graphics? We should make a logo - I can also ask someone to help who has done one of the other logos. Also, I've used the Russian template to set up your wiki - we will need some translations in order to make things look right, specifically how should "OrthodoxWiki" look in Serbian? and what should the name of the copyright page be? — FrJohn (talk) is up, by the way.
On of my felow swminarians is allready translating som of basic pages. I hope I will be able he will finish it before Friday. I think that logo of english verison will be fine for the start. --Ddpbf 01:44, March 27, 2007 (PDT)
copyright - Ауторско право; Bad Behavior - Недолично понашање; Rename user - Преименуј корисника; Protected pages - Заштићене стране; View and manipulate interwiki data - Погледај и управљај међувики подацима; Cite - цитирај; Espionage - Шпијунажа; Mass delete - Масовно брисање;—The preceding unsigned comment was added by Ddpbf (talkcontribs) .


Good job on starting up the new Serbian OrthodoxWiki! It looks like some tweaking is needed over there to make the interwiki links work, though. (Take a look at the bottom of the main page there to see what I mean.)

We seriously need to get one going in Greek. I know no one's stepped up to the plate to head it up as yet, but it seems to me that this is vitally useful, considering that Greek is the primary language of the Church in history. Perhaps some advertising somewhere? —Fr. Andrew talk contribs 05:49, March 27, 2007 (PDT)

I think Greek and Spanish are the next two languages up. I'd be happy to set up wikis for them, but I don't think this is a good idea when there's no one to step up to the plate and moderate the wikis. I don't know these languages, so I have no idea what would be being posted and couldn't effectively moderate. As soon as we have at least one person who knows these languages and would be willing to begin some of the translating, I'm ready to go! — FrJohn (talk)
Indeed. By the way, I may have someone willing to work on one in Danish! —Fr. Andrew talk contribs 07:43, March 27, 2007 (PDT)
Great! Let me know... — FrJohn (talk)
We have problem with interwiki.
It seams good now. Thanks--Ddpbf 11:11, March 27, 2007 (PDT)


Hello. I have a few prepositions :>. First, I think that this will be good if you can give mi admin rights on sr (to change mediawiki and some other closed pages). I think that this isn't problem becouse new projects is starting and there must be admins, and Ddpbf havn't expirience with wikis. Second namespace Orthodoxwiki shuld be Православна енциклопедија: or if you can't make namespace of two words this should be Православна-енциклопедија:. For now this is it. All the best, and I apologise for my bad english --Joca 11:54, March 27, 2007 (PDT)

One correction. We was tolking (I and ddpbf) and we make decision to namespace equivalent to en: orthodoxwiki should be Двери: --Joca 12:32, March 27, 2007 (PDT)
if this is problem we will pick some other name--Ddpbf 12:55, March 27, 2007 (PDT)
No problem, but what is the literal translation for Двери ? I see you guys figured the admin rights stuff out. — FrJohn (talk)
It literally means "doors." —Fr. Andrew talk contribs 13:57, March 27, 2007 (PDT)
One problem here is that the name of the "site" namespace ("OrthodoxWiki") is based on the name of the Wiki - it's a variable that is used throughout the system for a variety of purposes. "Wiki" is very long in Serbian! In spite of this, I think we had better go with Православна-енциклопедија - also for the sake of consistency among the wikis. I'll make the change. — FrJohn (talk)
енциклопедија is "encyclopedia" (I honestly wonder whether there is a Serbian word for "wiki").
BTW, I just tried adding a couple interwiki links over on the Russian site (a couple in English, and one for the Serbian site), and they're not working. —Fr. Andrew talk contribs 14:13, March 27, 2007 (PDT)
I just updated the Interwiki table - you may need to resave the pages since links aren't updated dynamically. (I already did the main page.) — FrJohn (talk)

OrthodoxWiki en español

I'm still interested in the wikiproyect in spanish language

--Alstradiaan 21:10, April 6, 2007 (PDT)