9/11 conspiracy theories was a good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
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Many of these questions arise frequently on the talk page concerning the 9/11 conspiracy theories.
To view an explanation to the answer, click the [show] link to the right of the question.
Q1: Why does this article not discuss 9/11 conspiracy theories as a valid scientific or historical hypothesis?
A1: Wikipedia relies on reliable sources that have a reputation for fact-checking and accuracy. The Neutral point of view policy, especially the sections Undue weight and Equal validity, requires that editors not add their own editorial biases when writing text based on such sources. As the relevant academic field generally rejects the several hypotheses grouped under the umbrella of 9/11 conspiracy theories, it would be a disservice to our readers to have a full description of the topic that does not reflect the consensus view. Further advice for how to treat topics such as this one may be found at the Fringe theories and Reliable sources guidelines.
Q2: Doesn't Wikipedia's policy on "neutrality" require a neutral treatment?
A2: Wikipedia's policy on neutrality does not require that all hypotheses be treated as equal or valid, nor is neutrality decided by the opinions of editors. On Wikipedia, neutrality is represented by a fair summary of the opinion found in the relevant scholarly, academic, or otherwise expert community. If that community rejects an idea with unanimity or near-unanimity, due weight requires that that rejection be presented.
Q3: Why didn't you include (other theory) in the article?
A3: Wikipedia's due weight guidelines state that an article should "make appropriate reference to the majority viewpoint wherever relevant and must not represent content strictly from the perspective of the minority view." Thus, we cover those conspiracy theories which have received significant coverage in reliable sources.
Q4: Isn't the official government story a "conspiracy theory" too?
A4: Wikipedia refers to reliable mainstream sources when determining appropriate descriptions. As such sources do not commonly refer to the official account as a "conspiracy theory" neither do articles here. The term conspiracy theory is typically used for claims that an event is "the result of an alleged plot by a covert group or organization or, more broadly, the idea that important political, social or economic events are the products of secret plots that are largely unknown to the general public." Although the version in government reports would fit the literal meaning of the term, conspiracy theories are generally viewed as theories that "read between the lines," and assume a hidden motive & massive manipulation of evidence to deceive the public. By nature, conspiracy theories are unsubstantiated and intended to question the official or scientific explanation.
Q5: Isn't "conspiracy theory" a pejorative term? Shouldn't the article be named something more neutral?
A5: Titles are typically chosen based on whether it is the common name used for the subject in reliable sources. While the term conspiracy theory has been used as a pejorative, so has "scientist," "American," and various other terms. It is not universally considered pejorative. There have been numerous discussions about the title of the article since the attacks occurred. After several debates, "conspiracy theory" has been judged to be the most common, accurate, and neutral term to describe the subject this article covers.
Q6: My edit was cited. Why was it removed?
A6: Wikipedia requires all contentious claims be cited to reliable sources. This is difficult with conspiracy theories, as they are already outside the mainstream. Generally speaking, we do not consider citations from blogs, websites with no editorial oversight, or YouTube videos to be reliable. If the material is about living people, this is especially important. If you feel your citation fits within Wikipedia's guidelines, please post a comment on the Talk page so it can be discussed.
The subject of this article is controversial and content may be in dispute. When updating the article, be bold, but not reckless. Feel free to try to improve the article, but don't take it personally if your changes are reversed; instead, come here to the talk page to discuss them. Please supply full citations when adding information, and consider tagging or removing unciteable information.
That (Gordon Farrer) is an editor of the Sydney Morning Herald. It is a RS. It falls into WP:NEWSBLOG. Describing it as a blog subject to removal is entirely inappropriate. Capitalismojo (talk) 20:25, 20 April 2014 (UTC)
The second is not Charlie Brooks it is Charlie Brooker. Brooker is a columnist for the Guardian newspaper. Since the section is in "Media reaction" it is entirely correct for a columnist's reaction to be included. Guardian is generally regarded as RS. It is not a blog. Capitalismojo (talk) 20:31, 20 April 2014 (UTC)
It's a Theguardian.com#Comment_is_free opinion piece. Opinion pieces are not published as part of the main print, so less of a 'media reaction', more of a personal 'journalist reaction'. Again, how Brooker's views on conspiracy theorists mindsets is relevant or reliable here evades me.--Theamazo (talk) 20:41, 20 April 2014 (UTC)
I agree that it is opinion, but it is not Random unreliable sources. It is, in fact, properly sourced as Brooker's opinion to a RS (The Guardian). If you believe the Guardian is not RS for the ref you have the option of taking it to WP:RSN. Capitalismojo (talk) 21:17, 20 April 2014 (UTC)
I do not understand why Zarembka's book is listed here. It is a collection of scholarly articles written by the members of Scholars for 911 Truth. Regardless of one's opinion about the 911 Truth Movement & the unofficial conspiracy theories, if a Wikipedia article on 9/11 conspiracy theories wants to cite the best academics/intellectuals who question the official 911 Commission Report, then Zarembka's book is a legitimate source. In full disclosure, I helped proofread that book -- that collection of essays by the leading intellectuals within the 911 Truth movement -- before its publication. However, I am not a member of the 911 Truth Movement.RushRhees (talk) 08:20, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
No problem with including this info, so long as it's made clear that this is merely the claims being levied by conspiracy theorists, and not serious arguments that have made it through a legitimate peer-review process. JoelWhy?(talk) 13:53, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
Zarembka is fine as a source for what truthers think (although secondary sources are prefered). It is not, however, "a collection of scholarly articles". It is just a collection of truther writings. — ArtifexMayhem (talk) 23:55, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
9/11 Truth Movement "intellectuals" is an oxymoron.--MONGO 11:41, 25 June 2014 (UTC)
I truly fail to understand why my edit is deemed OR. It is a strictly factual matter that polling established that support for military action was already there before 9/11. That is highly relevant given that the basis for many conspiracies is that the attacks were designed to provide said support.
Sorry but that's "nonsense". There is fact A (what some conspiracy theorists believe) and B, a statement implying that it can't be right b/c a source from before 9/11 has (besides other polling) a poll that says what you said in your edit. Can you see now that there is something wrong when you apply our policies to your edit in regards to OR/synth?TMCk (talk) 03:12, 31 May 2014 (UTC)
A and B of course implies C, that there was "enough support" already... at some point... [just to make it more clear for you].TMCk (talk) 03:26, 31 May 2014 (UTC)
It is a simple observation, informing people what the state of public opinion was before 9/11. You are the one doing the synthesis. Are you saying that all contradictory observations are OR synthesis? Or are you actually disputing the fact in question?
Are you seriously saying there is no way we can incorporate the results of this poll? Is it not highly relevant to the discussion?
Do not combine material from multiple sources to reach or imply a conclusion not explicitly stated by any of the sources. I did not do anything other than report the fact, given in one source. Please tell me where I arrived at a conclusion not stated in the source. Of course, the source was from before 9/11 so it does not mention 9/11.
@CJK: the burden is on you to show that this information is relevant to an article about conspiracy theories. So far you have not presented any source that connects this polling information to a CT, so you are continuing to violate WP:SYN by adding it back in. VQuakr (talk) 19:07, 31 May 2014 (UTC)
Are you saying that the information is irrelevant? CJK (talk) 21:45, 31 May 2014 (UTC)
First you argued in your edit summary that it's just a fact you added. There are lots of facts that are not suitable to be included in this article.
Now you're saying/asking if the information is not relevant. It is not relevant if secondary sources have not made that connection. It might be relevant to you but you're not a reliable source to make that connection and give it relevance. Read up on OR/synth again while putting your personal believes/feeling aside and you should come to the same conclusion.TMCk (talk) 22:35, 31 May 2014 (UTC)