Fallout Wiki Founder Banned From Wikia

Anyone who's anyone in the Fallout community knows Pawel "Ausir" Dembowski. Founder of The Vault wiki which contains over 15,000 pages of Fallout lore, Pawel is a human encyclopaedic of gaming's favourite post-apocalyptic franchise. Let me put it this way. When Chris Avellone has a question about Fallout, he asks Pawel.

Moreover, if you've read a breaking or original story about the Fallout universe in the past five years, there's a damn good chance Pawel was the source.

So how did the man who helped to grow Wikia with one of the most popular gaming wikis on the planet over the last five years find himself globally banned from the same network that employed him only a few months ago? By leaving a comment.

You see, Pawel is now employed by Curse. He moved The Vault to the Curse Network in November of last year and took a position as Curse's "Wiki Team Lead". That means he's now in charge of all the Curse wikis, including the one for Cobalt, a game published by Mojang. Mojang links to Curse's wiki as their official wiki, but Wikia was claiming that their wiki was the official Cobalt wiki. Hence Pawel's comment. Next thing you know he was globally banned from Wikia without warning. Not cool bro.

However, there's obviously a bit more to this story.

You see, Pawel founded The Vault in 2005, moved it to Wikia in 2007, joined the Wikia staff in April 2010 and then moved it to Curse in November 2011.

Wikia has since kept a copied of The Vault's contents (which they're allowed to do under Creative Commons) but have renamed it to the "Nukapedia". Due to years of SEO optimisation and record-breaking traffic, Wikia's wiki is still the most commonly used resource for Fallout news, even if it's no longer the official home of The Vault. Go ahead and Google anything Fallout-related, Nukapedia will come up.

So why on Earth would Pawel move The Vault away from Wikia, where he had a comfortable job and loyal following, to the Curse network knowing all too well that The Vault would become the #2 Fallout wiki and it would take him and his team of moderators years to build it back up?

Well, he says it was a group decision. The Vault admins had generally been displeased with Wikia's move towards becoming more of a social network than a wiki. They wanted more freedom on deciding how the wiki was being run and more of a focus on content instead of social features. They wanted to focus on gaming instead of Wikia's recent focus on lifestyles.

Curse also pays better.

Pawel says the split was amicable at first and he has tried to stay on good terms with Wikia. However, as Pawel and his team contunue to produce more original content at The Vault and more and more people leave Wikia's Nukapedia to follow Pawel to The Vault's new home, things started to become bitter.

Relationships between the two networks have become more noticeably strained and Pawel had started to be viewed by many as a man who split the Fallout community in twain.

So, one day, as he was just leaving a simple comment in hopes of clarifying an issue between the two networks, he was globally banned. Worse yet, he knows who banned him, and says they were once friends.

Pawel knows he has a long road ahead in order to build The Vault back up into the #1 Fallout resource on the web. Hell, even when you enter "The Vault" into Google, Nukapedia comes up.

However, he and his team are confident they can make it happen by the time the next Fallout game comes around by providing superior content on a more consistent basis. Pawel has never been bitter about his split with Wikia. This whole situation has saddened him more than anything.

All he hopes is that for all your post apocalyptic gaming needs, you'll be sure to check out the new and improved Vault

It's never easy having to deal with your former employers or employees, especially on the vast wasteland that is the internet. However, one thing is certain. War never changes.

Image: Chad Lakkis.


Comments

    Wow. Interesting read. It's disgusting that that is what got him banned officially, but I guess it makes sense in a feud where the Fallout community is collateral.

    If Mojang claim that Curse's wiki is the official wiki for Cobalt and Wikia continue to claim theirs is the official one, then there is in fact a legal issue. Wikia's claim is false and being used to procure business and finances under false pretenses

    not really keen on the curse network, mmo-champion used to be a great site with personality, now that it has been absorbed by curse it has lost its charm.

      I think you're just being a tad bit biased on the concept that Curse now own it. The owner / lead writer on MMO-Champ said that he would not be changing the format at all, or allow Curse to dictate what happens to the website. Those conditions (along those lines.) were part of deal of becoming one with Curse.

      The only thing that has changed is the visual aspect of the website and the occasional advertisement for the Curse company.

    Wikia are being dicks. His comment is perfectly legit and if they wanted the traffic that he and staff brought in they should've upped their offer to keep them on.

      In the article it wasnt about the pay that they left. its because of the social media style changes to the site that they were not happy with. Its like with any job the amount of financial compensation will never be enough if you are unhappy with some aspect or all of the job.

        "upped their offer" was referring to not just pay but any other conditions that Pawel and his team wanted met.

      Exactly. It wasn't a flamey comment, he even posted proof. Wikia are just being jerks. And they should get in a buttload of trouble for stealing the "Official" title to get user revenue up.

    Similar thing happened with the Touhou wiki. Used to be on Wikia, then Wikia brought in a new layout which made less room for the wikis themselves and more for advertisements. The heads of the Touhou wiki weren't happy and wanted to change it back, but Wikia refused, and so they backed everything up and moved to touhouwiki.net. Wikia responded by deleting all mention of the discussions leading to this and all references to the new site. Not sure if anyone actually got banned, though.
    End result is you now have Google pointing to the Wikia before Touhouwiki when the latter is now far more up to date and has a lot more information.

      It seems most Wikias have a ton of advertising space on them. No wonder so many jumped ship. Wikia staff were also generally being dicks during the Touhou Wiki debacle as well.
      (I used to edit on the Touhou Wikia, and now on the newer Touhou Wiki, but I haven't touched either in a while. IMO MediaWiki looks far better.)

    I have to say, I much prefer the one on curse to the old one, there arent 100,000 ads everywhere on the curse one.

      adblockplus

    Wait, people get paid for this?

    I wasn't aware of this. Updated my bookmarks.

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