I was a Conservapedia Administrator

Philip J. Rayment

Administrator e-mail Groups

Since late April 2007, selected Administrators have discussed matters in private via a number of e-mail groups. The first of these was a Yahoo group named ConservAdmins, started by TerryH, who initially suggested Andy, DanH, CPAdmin1, and me as members, although it was soon decided to open it to all sysops, and a notice was put on the Sysops page on Conservapedia1.

Not all administrators responded, and a few days later, Andy wrote, "By the way, as soon as RobS joins us we'll have about our 10 best people in this email loop, all adults. This is really the inner circle of our 33 Sysops." With RobS, that meant that the group comprised Andy, TerryH, TK, DanH, RobS, CPWebmaster, geo.plrd, Karajou, Ed Poor, Ymmotrojam, and me2.

So when about a week after that, Hojimachong applied to join the administrator group, it was seen to be a problem. Andy had been having problems getting e-mails from the group, so the solution to both problems was to start a new group, and tell Hojimachong that the group he wanted to join was no longer active. Although that group has not been used since 12th May 2007, it still exists, and still has those eleven members.

The new group was the Special Discussion Group, a Google group started by TK. It had the same members as the previous group, although around the end of July, JAllen was added to it.

On 1st July 2007, following receipt of the Kevin Conley letter (appendix C) with its evidence that posts to the Special Discussion Group were now public, a new Google group, named "Part 2" was started as "a replacement for the compro­mised Spec Discussion Group". There was some problem with getting DanH invited, which led to some ill-feeling (see also appendix D). It was mainly used by RobS, and was last used on 7th July 2007. It has since been deleted.

In most cases, in an attempt to appear fair, members of the various discussion groups were given "manager" status. When TK lost his administrator status, one way he took revenge was by using his "manager" status on the Special Dis­cussion Group to demote other Group members to ordinary members (leaving himself as the only manager), then opening the group to public viewing.

Unable to do anything about this, we simply started a new group, the imag­in­ativ­ely-titled "New Discussion Group". This was begon on 27th November, 2007, and all the previous members were invited to join the new group, with the exception of TK, of course.

Between the Special Discussion Group being compromised and the New Dis­cussion Group beginning, communication was by direct email. Andy sent two emails about why he had removed TK's administrator priveleges. The first was to the email addresses that he could find readily, which were those of Ed Poor, Geo.plrd, Karajou, RobS, me, and DanH. Having been provided with the e-mail addresses of the other senior administrators, he sent a modified version of it to the larger group, the additional ones being CPWebmaster, Ymmotrojam, TerryH, and JAllen. Then Andy learned that TK had received a copy of the second of these emails. He concluded that someone had been disloyal in passing it on to TK, and figured it to be one of the people who didn't get the first email, except that he excluded TerryH from that. However, later correspondence I had from TK made it clear that TK had seen both emails, and he hinted at getting them from more than one person.

The result was that yet another list was started, this time by geo.plrd, using FreeLists, on 30th November, 2007. Apart from geo.plrd, members included Andy, Ed Poor, TerryH, DanH, Karajou, and me (geo.plrd never properly set up the Group, including allowing members to see the member list, so I can't know if that's a complete list). It saw a bit of use on and off, but apart from a few posts in early May 2008, has not been used since 16th January 2008.

On 19th January, 2008, one of the senior administrators received an e-mail from a third party claiming to have "cracked" the Google Group. There was no actual evidence that it had been compromised; the third party did not even provide the name of the group, let alone any actual content. But the administrator, Karajou, responded by deleting the group and starting a new Google Group, this one named "Quagga Prime".

On 24th March, 2008, Karajou deleted Quagga Prime and started yet another Google Group. I don't think I ever found out the reason for this change, other than a claim that Quagga Prime had also been compromised. In late April 2008, DeanS, Learn together, and Conservative were also invited to join it. CPAdmin1 joined in September 2008. Although intended to be temporary, as far as I know, this group is still current. Following comments I made that he didn't like, on 23rd November, Ed Poor removed me from the group "to discuss whether Philip should remain in this discussion group". Some debate ensued on the group, then Learn together started corresponding with me with a view to readmission. The correspondence failed to resolve anything, but I was readmitted on 4th December.

Ed Poor again removed me from the group on 3rd January, 2009, citing "personal comments" that I supposedly made. Private discussion about personal comments failed to get anywhere (Ed Poor basically refused to discuss the matter; chapter 4), and I was not readmitted.


  1. http://www.conservapedia.com/index.php?title=Sysop:Talk/Archive_1&oldid=135991#New_Yahoo.21_Sysop_group,
  2. I'm referring to the administrators by their later Conservapedia user names in cases where they changed it or used a different name in the e-mail groups.

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Timeline

22nd November, 2006

Conservapedia is created

17th March, 2007

I join Conservapedia

3rd April, 2007

I am made an Administrator

25th April, 2007

First Admin. e-mail group.

25th May, 2007

Ed Poor proposes me as "template manager".

5th January, 2008

Letter to Andy about wise counsel

28th April, 2008

Bugler joins Con­serva­pedia

around June, 2008

I'm feeling more and more uncomfortable with associating myself with Conservapedia.

11th June, 2008

Bugler gains block rights.

17th June, 2008

I start writing these pages.

20th June, 2008

DanH quits.

31st December, 2008

Bugler loses rights.

1st January, 2009

CPAdmin1 quits.

2nd January, 2009

Bugler outs himself.

22nd March, 2009

I resign