It isn’t just that new editors don’t know the rules. The real problem is that admins tolerate horrible behavior from long-time editors which drives away other editors who are following the rules.
Long time editors know exactly what behaviour they can get away with whilst driving newbies into paroxysms of frustration that ends up with them breaking rules they didn’t even know about.
The combination of the two effects is incredibly toxic. It’s like a breeding ground for bad faith behaviour.
Fascinating! I’m a longtime participant in the OpenStreetMap community, which has some of the same dynamics and concerns. One big question I have is about the goal of this project: does Wikipedia know why they want to raise the number of editors? Are the declining numbers necessarily a bad thing, or do they reflect the fact that most topics have already been covered? Early OSM participants were often the first mappers in an area; now a new participant will be interacting with existing edits.
I think more editors generally means more/better content, so it’s understandable that they would be concerned with declining editor numbers.
The conflict is between allowing people to make bold edits and maintaining a polished public version.
Wild Wild Wikipedia with polished release branch when?