2019 Wikimedia Steward election results

In this years annual Steward elections, where the Wikimedia Stewards are elected and confirmed for the year, there was quite a bit of controversy. Most of which centered around Alex Shih, mainly a result of omcom revelations being exposed surrounding his misconduct with advanced user-rights.

However, once Alex Shih has LANCB’ed (quit Wikipedia forever) the controversy died down significantly.

However, as there were several other participants in the election, it figures that people other than Alex Shih were also subject to scrutiny.


Praxidicae, formerly known under a username which was closely linked to her legal “IRL” identity, was fairly controversial for three main reasons.

Firstly, she has an abrasive, rude, and Anglocentric viewpoint meaning that a good number of people, especially people not from the English Wikipedia, simply don’t like her. This doesn’t help, because the Steward election is as much a popularity contest as any other RfA style Wikipedia vote.

Secondly, there have been several examples of her sharing her own and others private data over insecure mediums and public fora. Which for a privacy sensitive role like Steward, did not help her case much. The most notable incident of this (and most memorable) is where she doxed herself on IRC in the main channel. Which lead to a number of presumably credible threats against her from various trolls she had previously helped ban. This resulted in her change of username, and a short Wikibreak.

Finally, she has only been a global sysop for a few months, and isn’t an admin on the English Wikipedia, where she edits. Many people consider that being an experienced admin on your home wiki is a prerequisite for stewardship.

The result?

Surprisingly fairly positive, Praxidicae received 65% support, below the 80% support ratio needed for approval. However with 121 supporters, there is a good chance she would be successful next year.

Vit Koz

Vit Koz, is the Belarusian candidate nobody had heard of before. There were two main reasons for the lack of support for their candidature.

Firstly, Vit didn’t seem to be in the right venue. Perhaps this is a failure of translation, or maybe a simple misunderstanding. But this non-English speaker appeared from the start to be looking for the Global Renamer role, and actually confirmed as much early on in the questions phase.

Secondly, he has very limited experience in high level trusted roles. He is a sysop on the Belarusian Wikiquote, but most Wikimedians consider that non-Wikipedia projects under the Wikimedia umbrella are “second rate” projects, and that adminship there is therefore in some way inferior (to some extent this is true, as sites like Wikiquote have less activity and are less complex).

The result?

Sadly no chance, with only a 16% support ratio. There is a high probability he would have withdrawn had someone explained to him how to do it. It is pretty clear that not really speaking any English was the main reason for what was probably a mistaken candidature.


Mentifisto was a reconfirmation, having been a Steward since 2012. He encountered problems related to his inactivity. Which appear to have caused him not to get confirmed for another year as Steward.

The issue of his activity was brought up by influential Wikimedian Vermont, in his voter guide to the Steward election, that turned out to be the only one published this year, other than ours. In which he wrote the following;

Relative to most stewards, Mentifisto has not been active since 2012. They focus mainly on spambots, locking one every few days that was automatically blocked and listed at Special:AbuseLog. This level of work, although necessary, is nearly all that Mentifisto has been doing for years, and he doesn’t do that much of it. Mentifisto has made about 140 actions made in the last year, excluding a recent spike on February 4th following an email conversation between him and myself. Their last 50 metawiki edits stretch back to June 2015. This would be more acceptable were Mentifisto active on local projects where they hold advanced permissions, which they are not. They hold sysop permissions on Commons, sysop and OS on the English Wikipedia, and sysop and CU the Simple English Wikipedia. On commons, Mentifisto has made a total of 48 edits since 2012.([1]) On enwiki, they have not been very active since 2009. They made between 200 and 400 edits per year from 2009 until 2014, where there and after it has been below 80 annually, only 15 in 2017 and 19 in 2018. On simplewiki, where there is a 100 annual edit/action minimum for administrators, they have been making around 100 edits annually since 2012.([2]) I respect their contributions to Wikimedia projects but believe that due to this continued lack of community involvement, both on local wikis and on meta, they should not continue as a steward.


The result?

The subsequent pile-on of concerns about Mentifisto’s activity mean he probably won’t be confirmed for stewardship this year.

Everyone else

Naturally, all the other candidates have been elected and reconfirmed with the minimum amount of fuss.

The new stewards are; Base, Einsbor, Jon Kolbert, Schniggendiller, and Wim_b.

The stewards confirmed for another year are; -revi, Ajraddatz, Bsadowski1, Defender, DerHexer, Green Giant, HakanIST, Hoo man, Jyothis, Linedwell, MBisanz, MF-Warburg, MarcoAurelio, Mardetanha, Masti, Matanya, Matiia, Melos, NahidSultan, Pmlineditor, QuiteUnusual, RadiX, Ruslik0, Rxy, Shanmugamp7, Sjoerddebruin, Stryn, Tegel, Teles, There’sNoTime, Trijnstel, Vituzzu, and علاء (alaa).

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