Using namespaces for page ownership
Yaron, this is indeed an interesting subject. I work with various organizations that are interested to use Semantic MediaWiki for their work and the one thing that holds them back is "ownership". Part of it is the psychological barrier that many feel to give up your sense of exclusivity, whcih is an irreversible result of choosing a collaborative platform. That's a learning process. And it helps to show that Mediawiki has plenty of control built in with history of changes, page watch, rollback and undo.
The more difficult issue is ownership that is related to decision making and authorization levels. If, for instance, a set of standards is decided upon through a meticulus process of negotiations and records of proceedings and national positions, stakeholders do not want their particular contributions in that process be altered. And for procedural, historical and legal purpose, there is a need to establish a better and tighter control - one might say: against the nature of the wiki - by articicially creating ownership.
You list a couple of extensions that may work for certain process and certain user communities. A totally different solution would be to use separate namespaces per user community and authorization level, and set the permissions for them in the access to those namespaces. In your view, is this a feasible and effective solution? I reognize that for a large organization with a complex administrative process, this could lead to a significant number of namespaces, and that the management of the settings for reading and editing access to those namespaces, and the transposing of information thereof, would be a monster. Still, I think it would be possible. Or not?
Sorry for the long delay! I didn't see this message until yesterday. Yes, I agree that page ownership is a big deal for some organizations - and that much of it is indeed psychological. Yes, separate namespaces could work - and if there are a lot of them, it would be tricky to manage all of them. A lot of this sort of thing is on a case-by-case basis - it depends on how many people are involved, how many organizations are involved, how close the organizations are to one another, etc. Another solution is to simply have different wikis, of course - which might be the easiest option to manage.