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Not following guidelines for unsubstantiated reasons such as 'it doesn't make sense', is daft. We assume the reader knows what they are looking for. We don't need to be as clear as dedicated articles on the subjects. The guideline exists so that disambiguation are consistent in how they present articles. It's confusing to present articles in different ways on different disambiguation pages.
Placing part of the name outside of the link when appropriate is fairly standard for disambiguation pages. See United Kingdom (disambiguation) for example. You can alternatively phrase it 'United States, officially the United States of America, a country...' if you really think it's going to confuse readers who already know what they are looking for.
Additionally, having 'The' before 'Americas', but not before 'United States' is more misleading then simply omitting 'The' from both.
You just create more problems by not following the guidelines. Rob (talk | contribs) 10:59, 27 May 2014 (UTC)
I see you're not familiar with this topic,or the page history, but these choices have been made and tinkered with a lot, to ensure the page is as clear as possible (and to the extent that we can, complies with NPOV, which is an enormous problem when it comes to the the word America, see American (word) and so forth). It would behoove you to familiarise yourself with why it's been hammered out this way before trying to blindly apply the MOS without regard for the goal of writing an encyclopaedia. Changing the page to be less functional for no reason other than a poorly written guideline recommends you do something as a default unless you have a reason not to is not a good decision. The 'the' in 'The Americas' is very different from the 'the' in 'the United States of America', the former really being a part of the name, while the latter ain't. It simply doesn't make sense to list The Americas as Americas, as "Americas" is not a thing that exists in English, and as such seeing "Americas" is likely to confuse people. This is a particularly severe problem as people searching for America when they mean The Americas are typically not great English speakers, and so deliberately obfuscating what's going is more problematic than it might be in other contexts where it's likely to be easier for the readership to puzzle out the information you're trying to hide from them. (In fact, that Americas is at Americas rather than The Americas is also a fault of blinding applying the MOS where it significantly degrades the encyclopaedia, but is a rare enough case that it's hard to address)
Beyond this, it should be clear why the United States is linked. Although it's obvious to most of us Anglophones, there's a significant minority who claim confusion, that it's simply wrong, etc. It's not really true that the official name of the States is the United States of America - to the extent that an official name exists, it's probably just "United States". A long, detailed discussion of all this nuance is not really appropriate for a disambiguation page - rather, the entry "United States of America" makes clear what they page is, is a relatively neutral phrasing, and is sufficiently short so that those of us looking for the warships or albums or whatever don't have to scroll past pages and pages of unnecessary information.
Each page has it's own challenges, and guidelines are just that - guidelines. Where they strongly conflict with the goal of writing an encyclopaedia, you need to step back and ask why a guideline, which explicitly says that common sense exceptions apply to it, should be followed when it's damaging to the encyclopaedia and there's no apparently upside to following the guideline. WilyD 07:34, 28 May 2014 (UTC)
I don't think following the guideline in this instance is 'damaging to the encyclopaedia'. 'The' is not part of the name 'Americas'. For example, a sentence such as 'The Antarctic, Arctic and Americas...' is perfectly correct. I was involved in the last major move discussion. But anyway, my comment was merely advice, and I understand these matters are subjective.
Less relevant, but also...
'people searching for America when they mean The Americas are typically not great English speakers'. English people are generally pretty good English speakers, and from my experience, English people usually refer to the landmass as 'America' when the context is clear, but reliable sources from England do not. Hence there is much support for keeping 'America' disambiguated, but not a lot of evidence. In the previous discussion on the matter, most editors opposing the move were from England, or were secondary speakers. Referring to secondary speakers as 'not great English speakers' is quite rude. When learning another language, cognates are usually preferred, and 'America' is a cognate to 'America' (es), 'Amerique' (fr) and 'Amerika' (de), while 'Americas' is not, and is quite unique to English. Additionally, many editors here don't realise that much of our audience is secondary speakers. People from across Europe use the English Wikipedia as it is more reliable then other encyclopaedias. If in European English, 'America' is commonly to refer to the landmass, then we should take this into account. Bare in mind, the use of the term 'America' to refer to the landmass is accurate English, and pre-dates contemporary use referring to the United States. Just because it's less common doesn't mean it's incorrect.
'The Antarctic, Arctic, and Americas...' is really awkward English, because you're trying to pillage the 'the' for the Americas from the first, normal usage would be 'The Antarctic, Arctic, and the Americas ...'. Beyond that, it's not rude to say someone isn't great at speaking English if they are not. I'm not a great French speaker - it's not rude, it just recognises what is. (But a good enough speaker to note that 'The Americas' is not unique to English, quand on parle français, on peut dire 'les Amériques' ou 'des Amériques' pour 'the Americas' parce que 'Amérique' est souvent 'les Étates'). Using America to mean the Americas isn't exactly wrong, but competent Anglophones avoid it unless they're trying to make a point (or the context demands it) because they're know that it's confusing. I can say prove to mean test, which is perfectly correct English, but I don't, because I know I'm going to confuse my audience. For this page, I don't think there's any dispute over both America and the Americas being mentioned as possible dismabiguation targets (though there is constant dispute over which order they should go in), but the page also needs to be succinct to allow for quick disambiguation, written neutrally, but also make it clear why each entry is included, and be grammatically correct, to prevent confusion. Where the MOS doesn't interfere with those goals, we should follow it, but in this instance, where it does, a little common sense needs to be applied, as the MOS notes in the template at the top. WilyD 16:57, 30 May 2014 (UTC)
I don't see how 'Americas' requires 'the' more then 'Arctic', but then, I'm not a linguist. Maybe you're talking shit, maybe you're not.
According to my French SO, 'Amériques' is sometimes used to collectively refer to what the French regard as 'sous-continents de l'Amérique'. It's like saying 'the Koreas' rather then 'Korea'. The term is used in a different context. Of course, the terms 'Americas' and 'America' aren't completely synonymous in English either. For example, 'there is a canal between the Americas' is not the same as 'there is a canal between America'. There is probably an equivalent to 'Americas' in many languages for this purpose, however my point is that 'the Americas' hasn't taken precedence over 'America' like it has in English.
In England, using 'America' to refer to the landmass in context is not uncommon, or incompetent. Probably why our neighbours use this term when speaking English. Conversely, they all speak with American accents because they're 'easier' apparently...
Well, most francophones I have known are Quebecois (and Quebecoise), so the cross talk between Canadian English and Canadian French might influence my perception of the commonness (although the Louvre organises some of it's collections geographically, L'Afrique, L'Oceanie, Les Ameriques, so it's at least not unknown in France). Certainly using 'America' to mean 'the Americas' happens in England, though my experience living here is that it's mostly old conservative men who still dream of empire who do it. (i.e., they're doing it to make a point. And if you read the rants here from Latin Americans about the use of America to mean the United States, most of them (if not all) know full well how "America" is used in English, and are trying to make a ?different? point). Only someone who doesn't speak very good English would think you can say "America" and assume it would even occur to your audience you might mean 'the Americas'. Anglophones, and second (third+) language speakers with decent skill recognise that without context, listeners are going to take "America" to mean "The United States", not "The Americas" (and the context is usually history - "Columbus discovered America", things of that nature). And they're going to expect an encyclopaedia entry to be at The Americas, not America. But that's not really the point. Even if some people will be able to parse out that by "Americas" we mean "The Americas" which are also sometimes called "America", not all are, and we shouldn't make navigating this page a challenge, but as easy as possible. WilyD 09:31, 3 June 2014 (UTC)
Your French SO and your general observations of England are not reliable sources.
Here's an article from today's Le Monde, in which it is written: "Les élections américaines de mi-mandat (midterms) sont rarement une sinécure pour les présidents en place." "The American mid-term elections (midterms) are rarely an easy task for presidents in place." They are referring to mid-term elections in the United States. 
Here's an article from today's BBC News that says "Are these the first people in the US to have Ebola? No, a small number of American aid workers who contracted the virus while abroad have recovered after flying back to the US for treatment." Here, there is no question about the link between the US and the use of the word "American" as the answer immediately follows the question. 
Here's an article from Asahi Shimbun, the largest circulating newspaper in Japan, analyzing the 2012 U.S. presidential election. They use the kana word アメリカ, which is literally pronounced "Amerika," to refer to the United States throughout. Example is the concluding sentence: "今回の選挙の意味は、政策論争でもなく、景気論争でもなく、アメリカ政治の構造的な変化を明確に示した選挙であったことだ" "The meaning of this election is neither a policy or economic debate, but an election that clearly showed the changes in American politics." 
Here's an article from Der Spiegel (front page article) which uses "Amerikaner" to refer to the US struggle against ISIS. 
"America" and "American" is used by all four of the major news organizations in the UK, France, Japan, and Germany to refer to the United States. They can and do use United States, États-Unis, 合衆国, and USA (Germans keeping it simple) as well, but they use America interchangeably to refer to the country, not the continent.
Now, to be fair, I have found that in Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese (the non-French Romance Languages) it generally refers to the continent and not the country. But the idea that this is universally true across all languages is incorrect. TempDog123 (talk) 20:52, 12 October 2014 (UTC)
The first two entries are links to United States and Americas. Which order should they be placed in? The country is just a subregion of the continent, suggesting the continent might be listed first, but it could instead be that more people search for the country. 188.8.131.52 (talk) 01:09, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
Both are equally visible on the very first sight, at the top, outside of sections or other formats. It is a bit pointless which one gets to go first, so I would use the alphabetic order. Cambalachero (talk) 01:42, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
The usage for America meaning the Americas is seldom used by reliable sources, and as the previous discussion showed, the only time the Americas redirect used specifically for this disambiguation page got anywhere near as many views as the United States redirect is when it was being artificially inflated to try to match the more frequently viewed page (that discussion took place around July 15-19). The United States is a subregion of the Americas, that's true, but that doesn't mean the Americas should be listed first as if America is used used anywhere near as frequently to refer to it, since that's the context the disambiguation is using and is how the two should be organized. The most commonly used meaning for the term needs to be listed first on disambiguation pages, that's what they're for, and there's no question what almost all sources mean when they use "America". Wikipedia reflects usage, it does not correct usage, and I don't think anyone can seriously argue (and back up the claim) that most sources don't mean the United States when they say America. - Aoidh (talk) 02:18, 24 June 2014 (UTC)
Because this is a disambiguation page, we should do this based on what people are looking for. Looking at the current statistics of the redirects to the United States and the Americas it is indeed apparent that the link to the United States is about 3 times more popular than that to the Americas. Therefore I think it is fine as-is. (the United States first and the Americas second) -- Lonaowna (talk) 12:09, 25 June 2014 (UTC)
Disambiguation pages ("dab pages") are designed to help a reader find Wikipedia articles on different topics that could be referenced by the same search term, as described in the Disambiguation guideline. Disambiguation pages are not articles; they are aids in searching.
The wikilinks I added were very much an aid to searching for and disambiguating the difference, I don't see how that WP:MOSDAB justifies a revert here? WCMemail 16:12, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
That just illustrates what happens when you stop reading after the first sentence. Continue on down to the MOS:DABENTRY section, which says, among many other things:
Include exactly one navigable (blue) link to efficiently guide readers to the most relevant article for that use of the ambiguous term. Do not wikilink any other words in the line.
Kudos for your ability to pick out an element of a guideline to support your line, let me throw back a policy WP:IAR and ask the very simple question was the edit you reverted an improvement or not? WCMemail 17:56, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
Not in my opinion. Anyone who clicks on the link to Americas can very easily find the articles about the two continents. Saving readers one click to find some information that almost everyone in the world already knows is not enough of a benefit to outweigh the disadvantages of cluttering disambiguation pages with extraneous links. --R'n'B (call me Russ) 19:20, 22 August 2014 (UTC)