Talk:Barry Fell

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Pseudoscience[edit]

Fell's work clearly falls into the category of pseudoscience so the category is appropriate. If you think that the existence of this category violates NPOV, then you should make an argument for the deletion of the category. On my reading of the NPOV policy, the existence of this category does not violate NPOV.Bill 21:21, 2 December 2006 (UTC)

It is abundantly clear (even from a simple google search) that Fell's hypotheses fall into the category of pseudoarchaeology. Codex may like the theories, but they are kookery nonetheless. -- Evertype· 21:57, 3 December 2006 (UTC)
I'm not the only one who disagrees, there are definitely other authors who have accepted at least some of his data, even if other of his flakier theories have received less support. This is a biographical article, not about any single archaeological theory, and this category does not conform to WP:NPOV, since citable opinion is divided and its purpose is only an attempt to utterly discredit everything he has ever done no matter what, much like ad hominem. The 'scientific theory' mentioned on the cat page means having a hypothesis and testing it; it's too bad that often those who do get ostracised and blacklisted as 'pseudo' for reasons of political agenda, when that itself is no valid part of the scientific process. I don't know if this will ultimately pass the NPOV ("pillar of wikipedia") test... ፈቃደ (ውይይት) 22:48, 3 December 2006 (UTC)

PIA[edit]

PIA could mean a pious, devout woman in either Latin or Spanish. The word has the same meaning in both languages. Reading it as an Arabic word in Phoenician characters, as Fell does, is as farfetched and implausible as you can get. Das Baz 22:36, 8 June 2006 (UTC)

The comments of Das Baz are original research. But given that Phoenecian and Arabic are both in the Semitic language family and use similar scripts, and came from the same part of the world, how far fetched is it? Likewise with the word GUIN meaning "white in P-celtic". Ever heard of a pen-guin? ("White head" in Welsh) Ever heard of Guinevere? ("White wave" in Welsh). At any rate, one's agreement or disagreement with Fell's translations doesn't belong here unless it is a reference to a published criticism.Cadwallader (talk) 19:17, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

What about recent DNA findings?[edit]

Recent DNA findings have said that the original people of the British Isles, including Ireland for these purposes, are related to Basques. Basques are essentially the aboriginal people of France/Spain. Others have said, including Fell, that what is now Spain/Portugal was part of the Phoenaecian/Carthaginian trading system which did the shipping/fighting for the Eastern empires such as Egypt and Persia.

As for Daz Baz, surely you are aware of the historical connections betweem Latin and Phoenaecian? You are also aware that the Vikings dumped an amount of slaves on what is now Iceland? Those slaves were taken from what is now Ireland. Surely some of those slaves could have made it to what is now Newfoundland and settled there. If they were not the first there, they would have blended in and influenced whhat was already there. What Fell said about "PIA" is not so far-fetched in that context, the language influences. This may sound speculative, but it is surely better than those who just dismiss Fell out of hand as a crackpot.

JBDay 18:04, 7 July 2007 (UTC)

Marginalisation[edit]

The present revision of the article uses several obvious devices to marginalize Dr. Fell's credibility with regard to his work on epigraphy, and is thus highly POV.

1. It presents his epigraphic work as completely detached from his academic career, when the two were closely combined from the beginning of his research in the Pacific islands in the 1930's and 40's until the end of his life. Ie. the article leads us to believe he was a "respected professional" marine biologist at Harvard, but an amateur kook epigrapher.

It is hard to imagine that a respected Harvard Professor would have a secret life publishing pseudo-scientific theories and still keep his job. The qualities that earned him professional respect and tenure at the most prestigious university in America in one field would tend to carry over into other interests. Anyone who has read his books can see that.

Furthermore, there are probably less than five "professional epigraphers" paid to teach nothing but epigraphy in the world. Very few of the contributors to the study of epigraphy have been paid to do so as "professionals", as there are few institutions looking to hire an "epigrapher". Rather, certain archaeologists consider him to have invaded their turf, and therefore dismiss him as an "amateur".

2. The article presents one of the weakest of his epigraphic identifications as typical of all of his work, and doesn't present the full argument in favor of that case. This is the "straw man argument".

3. It makes an "appeal to consensus" as if all academics reject the work of Dr. Fell, which is not true. It appears that certain American academics reject Dr. Fell's work because it doesn't conform to the orthodoxy of no pre-Columbian contact. However, other European academics have no problem recognizing the importance of Dr. Fell's work in Ogham epigraphy - as they don't have a sacred cow at stake.

Michael Crichton said it well:

"Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you're being had.

"Let's be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus.

"Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.[1]"

It should also be remembered that most of the pioneering work on epigraphy that is now taught by academics was originally published by "amateurs" such as Georg Fabricius - literature professor, Theodor Mommsen - classicist. Like Fell, these men were multi-talented tenured professors whose interests and academic work delved into a number of far-fetched areas.

Like the now-recognized 19th-century epigrapher Franz Cumont, who was denied tenure because his discoveries were unorthodox, Dr. Fell's work is scornfully rejected by career archaeologists who still believe the world is flat.

So, how do we write a NPOV article about Dr. Fell's contributions to the field of epigraphy? Describe them without deliberately marginalizing them, and note any published rejections of his theory by other academics. (To be fair, maybe we should only accept criticism from "professional" epigraphers...) Anonymous appeals to consensus are rubbish. Cadwallader (talk) 18:43, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

:: Fell was a tenured professor, it didn't matter what rubbish he wrote so long as it wasn't illegal, he couldn't be fired.

The article makes it clear his interest in epigrapny dates back to at least 1940. He is an amateur (as Cadwallader seems to admit) and very much of an amateur when he writes about archaeology. What he writes about European archaeology shows his lack of understanding, and his attempts to apply that to North America... it's not surprising that archaeologists have not spent much time commenting on his claims. The West Virginia claims are among his best known so it is not suprising that the article mentions them, although one might argue that the article should also say that they have been rebutted. Amercian archaeologists reject his work because it is bad, full stop. I'm interested in the names of the European academics who allegedly support him.

An NPOV article would not, by the way, have comments such as "However, there have been no academic publications that have critiqued or refuted his methods or conclusions. Rather, Dr. Fell's work has been simply ignored or ridiculed in popular literature such as that of Stephen Williams." -- admittedly he does get dismissed (for good reason) summarily at times, but the statement is misleading and Williams doesn't ignore him or just ridicule him.Doug Weller (talk) 20:22, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

"I'm interested in the names of the European academics who allegedly support him." - As you wish, see my revision to the article.

Now, my request to you: Can you supply any references to American or European academic criticism of Fell's work other than the West Virginia Archaeologist article from 1989? Can you justify your statement that his work "it is bad full stop" by citation please? Cadwallader (talk) 20:40, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

see just above[edit]

the massive bias of this article is clear from reading just above - esp the thoughtful review at the end which is then, immediately , heavily trashed...

what that does is put into suspicion any wiki article at all, as when, you see manic, heavy trashing of a person who did credible excellent work, being trashed as Dr Fell...this proves the overwhelming additional point, that the halls of academe are awash with non thinking, and the uneducated... showing their inability to think in regard to Dr Fell's clearly "proven" work in epigraphy.... —Preceding unsigned comment added by 99.162.178.52 (talk) 12:18, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Reverted stuff about Pyle[edit]

Cadwallader, I've reverted all of this. You've looked at what is an unreliable source by Wikipedia standards and haven't actually checked to see if it is correct. It's late here and I don't have time to explain why, but I'll comment now that there is no evidence that Robert Myer, who was indeed eminent in his field, was no Ogham expert.

from a friend on Usenet (no use as a source, I know, but ok here on a talk page and relevant)

Robert Meyer, mentioned above [described as 'the late Robert Meyer, who held the Celtic Chair at the Catholic University in Washington, D. *C.' -- BMS], personally told the authors that he did not believe the Ogam alphabet derived from the Latin, because a scholar adapting an existing alphabet to form a new one for writing Old Irish, as OHehir claimed, would not have incorporated the unused letters NG, Q, and Z, and he would have included P.'


Meyer is wrong on at least two counts: there are very good reasons for the ogam alphabet to include Q and not P. Proto-Indo-European */p/ was lost in Celtic. It was eventually restored to Old Irish as a result of borrowings from Latin, but the earliest borrowings replaced Latin /p/ with the sound represented by ogam Q (on which more in a moment). Thus, there was originally no need for a character to represent [p].


Q was used to represent a voiceless labiovelar stop, a continuation of PIE */k^w/. In Old Irish this fell together with the simple velar stop /k/, but in Primitive Irish the two were still distinct. Thus, there *was* need of a separate character for this sound.


As for NG and Z, these characters are not reliably attested in the early monument tradition, and their values in the later manuscript tradition may not match their original values.


This is Robert T. Meyer (1911-1987) who translated some early Irish works, some works by the early Christian writer Palladius, and the life of S. Anthony attributed to Athanasius. None of his publications seem to be about Ogham (not just because of the above comment but a search, and also Diakonia: Studies in Honor of Robert T. Meyer, has nothing on Ogham. There seems to be no reason to consider him an expert (or a reliable source for that matter in this context).

As for the Grants, have you bothered to find out anything about them? I have. Or Pyle's claims for Celtic DNA? I've also looked at those. More tomorrow. Meanwhile, please don't put it back. I'm also surprised that you mention brachycephalic and write a radiocarbon date of 710 AD, as you should know that brachycephalic is a red herring and proves nothing at all, and you don't give radiocarbon dates like that.Doug Weller (talk) 21:11, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

Alright, then. Please support your reversion. Also, you do need to put back the material about the excavation and the bone needle and the Irish panel. You can discredit them if you wish, but they are part of the historical discussion on this subject. You present yourself as an academic with some knowledge of Ogam. However, these articles are based on citation, not expert authority.
Furthermore, I've been researching the fellows who published the paper debunking Fell's translation. Do you know who Monroe Oppenheimer was? Do you know who W. Willard Wirtz is? They are bigshot LAWYERS, not scientists, not Ogam experts. Aka AMATEURS.Cadwallader (talk) 21:20, 8 April 2008 (UTC)
Just about to switch off. Look up 'archaic ogham' and tell me what you think. Nothing from the Pyle website can be sourced, it's self-published and them's the rules. But I will go into it in a bit of detail. I am not presenting myself as an expert on Ogham, that was a quote from someone else. As for Wirtz and Oppenheimer, you've got amateurs refuting an amateur then?Doug Weller (talk) 21:26, 8 April 2008 (UTC)
I note that this article and discussion of it has progressed from "Barry Fell was an amateur epigrapher who made the ridiculous claim that there were Irish Ogam petroglyphs in West Virginia" to "His translation of the Ogam petroglyphs was wrong." So, now there are Irish petroglyphs on a cliff in West Virginia, but they don't say what Fell translated them as. That's fine. I am not here to defend Fell's translation of the Ogam. But the fact that he recognized it as Ogam and attempted to translate it is not nearly so ridiculous now, is it? So the present version of the article is not an accurate statement of the history is it?
In the same "West Virginia Archaeologist" publication Edo Nyland (a Professional Forester and former Superintendent of the Yukon Government) argued that the inscription was Basque written in Irish Ogam and that it concerned a buffalo hunt. Now this is quite interesting, as we have supposed "academics" acknowledging that there is an Ogham inscription in a European language, but that Dr. Fell translated it incorrectly. How is it that two Washington lawyers (Oppenheimer and Wirtz) are qualified to publish academic papers debunking Fell's translation of Ogam, when Harvard Professor Barry Fell who studied epigraphy his entire career is just an "amateur"? The difference, you see, is that "we" don't agree with Dr. Fell, so he is an amateur. But since Wirtz and Oppenheimer agree with "us" they are qualified experts... Likewise, Mr. Nyland is qualified to publish a translation of the Ogam inscription in the same "journal". It appears to me that "The West Virginia Archaeologist" is a scam.
The actual case is that in academia, published scholars are not discouraged from publishing outside of their primary area of expertise, so long as their thesis doesn't violate an established orthodoxy. So, they will happily accept the musings of attorneys on archaic Ogam inscriptions, so long as they are defending the bulwark of academic orthodoxy.
My goal here is a truly NPOV article about Dr. Fell and the epigraphy controversy. If you can work with me on that Mr. Weller, I am a reasonable person. The true story about Pyle and the Grants would be very relevant to the article, so I would love to hear it from you.Cadwallader (talk) 21:43, 8 April 2008 (UTC)
Then please delete the Pyle stuff as it fails WP:RELIABLE. I'll add a couple of comments. As I said, Robert Myer was not known for being knowledgeable about Ogham, and there is no evidence that I can find that he wrote about it or taught about it. As for the Grants, who are they? I've tried and failed to find a William Grant at Edinburgh University, nor can I find a John Grant who fits the description. I see no reason to think they don't exist, but every reason to think they aren't notable. As for the DNA, the (notable) person who did the DNA work (Scott Woodward of Brigham Young) didn't say it was European.
Right now the article is very POVDoug Weller (talk) 07:32, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
Forgot to say that Edo Nyland didn't publish a translation of the inscription in West Virginia Archaeologist, someone else, Robert Wise, quoted him. Wise didn't point out that most people think Nyland is a real kook (he thinks every language goes back to Basque).Doug Weller (talk) 07:34, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
This article is about Barry Fell, it is not about the epigraphy controversy.
I'm here to help establish an NPOV article on the basis of good sources. I couldn't see that the Pyle material was relevant, since the events occurred after the article subject's death. Itsmejudith (talk) 11:02, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
The relevancy of Pyle to Fell, is that Fell was accused of "fraud and deceit" in a purported academic journal on the basis of his translation of the Wyoming County petroglyph panel. This has remained a black mark that casts a cloud on the man's life and name. Pyle claims to have unearthed substantial corroborating evidence at the site after Fell's death. That makes Pyle's claims very relevant to the life of Barry Fell. Whether they are true is another question.Cadwallader (talk) 11:33, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
But Pyle is an unreliable source. He is not telling the truth. He is making claims that cannot be verified about people who cannot be identified, he is clearly putting an interpretation on the DNA testing that isn't backed up by Scott Woodward who is an expert, etc. So whether they are true and verifiable is at the heart of the matter. I have a 112 page essay by Professor Brendan O'Hehir, co-founder of the Celtic studies program at the University of California at Berkeley, which critiques Fell's errors in detail. But it's unpublished, so I can't use it either. I do have several other published articles on Fell which I must look at again when I have time. Anyway, thanks for removing the stuff you just removed.Doug Weller (talk) 12:00, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
We clearly need to come to agreement as soon as possible on the status of the WVA. I've been discussing general principles for establishing the status of journals on the reliable sources noticeboard. It is crucial to see which organisation publishes the journal and what statements the publisher makes about the peer-reviewing process. We could also look at the credentials of the editorial board and see which databases, if any, list the journal. Itsmejudith (talk) 12:06, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
That's all fine. Pyle is unnecessary. But this bit about academic journals deserves comment. Wikipedia has a lot of content concerning science, but also has a lot of plain history and biography. When writing the history of events and biography of a man's life, the sources are not going to be peer-reviewed journals. So in this case, it is perfectly historical to say that Pyle claimed to have found X,Y,Z, but that his claim has not been verified. That is history. And that particular bit of history does have bearing on Fell's life. History is not a science. It may have peer-reviewed journals, but in the field of history these are merely propaganda tools used by certain "sects" to promote and enforce their viewpoint. As you will find if you dig into the "West Virginia Archaeologist" it is merely a self-selected group of enthusiasts, many of whom have Ph.D.'s in other fields. They are just as amateur as The Epigraphic Society. That doesn't mean their views shouldn't be heard. But hear both sides.Cadwallader (talk) 15:57, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
That doesn't mesh with the WP:RS view of academic journals in history topics. Itsmejudith (talk) 16:35, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
Cadwallader You are arguing for a change in Wikipedia policy and this isn't the right place for that. WP:RELIABLE, specifically see WP:SPS which is clear: "Self-published sources (online and paper)

Anyone can create a website or pay to have a book published, then claim to be an expert in a certain field. For that reason, self-published books, newsletters, personal websites, open wikis, blogs, forum postings, and similar sources are largely not acceptable.

Self-published material may, in some circumstances, be acceptable when produced by an established expert on the topic of the article whose work in the relevant field has previously been published by reliable third-party publications. However, caution should be exercised when using such sources: if the information in question is really worth reporting, someone else is likely to have done so."

No one knows if Pyle has been honest or not. The people he names can't be traced. He is implying that Professor Meyer was an expert on Ogham when all the evidence shows that he never published on it, taught it, etc. He makes claims for the DNA that he can't back. Etc. And he thought it was good enough to prove scientifically that Fell was right. Doug Weller (talk) 16:40, 9 April 2008 (UTC)

Yes, but you have missed my point. I am not arguing for a change in policy. Pyle's self-published statements are unreliable sources for the facts that he claims. But they are reliable sources to show that he in fact made the claims contained therein. So with regard to the life of Barry Fell, one might say, "Several years after Fell's death, one 'Stephen Pyle', a former archaeologist for the WV Dept of Roads, claimed to have done X,Y,Z at the petroglyph site. His claims, however, have never been verified." After all, Fell's books were self-published, yet we cite them here as reliable sources regarding Fell's claims.Cadwallader (talk) 17:36, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
From WP:V

In general, the most reliable sources are peer-reviewed journals and books published in university presses; university-level textbooks; magazines, journals, and books published by respected publishing houses; and mainstream newspapers. As a rule of thumb, the greater the degree of scrutiny involved in checking facts, analyzing legal issues, and scrutinizing the evidence and arguments of a particular work, the more reliable it is.

Academic and peer-reviewed publications are highly valued and usually the most reliable sources in areas where they are available, such as history, medicine and science. Material from reliable non-academic sources may also be used in these areas, particularly if they are respected mainstream publications. The appropriateness of any source always depends on the context. Where there is disagreement between sources, their views should be clearly attributed in the text.

It seems pretty clear but of course I will read any further comments that anyone wishes to make. Itsmejudith (talk) 16:42, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
Cadwallder's comments sound reasonable to me. As wikipedia editors, we may try to second guess published authors, or call their reasoning shaky or erroneous -- which it may well be. But when we say that their view shouldn't even be heard at all because we have decided they are wrong, it's taking it to a whole new level, that is more likely to offend some people. 70.105.31.77 (talk) 16:47, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
I object to Itsmejudith's reversion of the Kelley quotes. If you think it was improperly sourced, then source it properly, don't delete it. I fully intend to revert it. The Atlantic Monthly is a mainstream periodical, which is listed as an acceptable source under WP:V "mainstream newspapers".Cadwallader (talk) 17:11, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
No objection in principle to Atlantic Monthly but it would obviously be better to refer to Kelley's opinions directly rather than as reported by a journalist. I'm OK to leave the stuff in for now until I/we can find copies of the relevant papers by Kelley. Thanks for finding this material, which seems to be relevant. Itsmejudith (talk) 17:16, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
Re the self-published Pyle statements, the issue is not whether self-published statements can in general be used - they can be in order to illustrate what a person/organisation says about themselves. The issue is whether Pyle can be referred to at all without making an original synthesis. Itsmejudith (talk) 17:44, 9 April 2008 (UTC)

Some thoughts[edit]

1) Should the reference to/description of the Wise and Nyland articles be removed? It seems more or less self-published on the 'net, and it's debatable what, exactly, this adds to the overall article.

2) Is Flavin an appropriate reference, as this is also self-published?

3) Everything on the West Virginia glyphs stands as a fine example of Fell's methods and the reactions his work received, but I think we need to be careful not to expand the section too much, to the point that it exceeds it's usefulness as an example and becomes the focus of the article.

4) If more criticism from academic sources is needed, the reaction that "America BC" received would be good, as this was the last time Fell's work was really examined by many archaeologists/linguists/historians/etc., a few of whom published book reviews expressing their feelings towards the quality of the arguments the book contained.

5) It looks like the references section needs to be tinkered with so all of the references are written in the proper format.

ClovisPt (talk) 00:13, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

1 - Wise is ok, he's an archaeologist and the article is on the Council of West Virginia Archaeology site, not self-published. It's quoting Nyland, so that should be ok.
2 - Rick Flavin is someone I know, in fact he phoned me recently. He thinks you can find meaningful scratches hundreds of thousands of years ago, but he's isn't a Fell fan. I don't know about using his site. He is self-published, but you could almost argue the same thing for everything from the Epigraphic societies. Probably not though, as useful and good as some of his stuff is.
3 - agreed, gets too much weight.
4 - I have quite a lot of stuff at home I could use, but I won't be home for 9 days or so.
5 - Do you know Reference Generator tool? It's very useful.--Doug Weller (talk) 14:39, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
Made the cut as recommended. Also on the same lines, the reference to Oppenheimer and Wirtz is a mouthful of marbles. I suggest cutting the bit about relying on expert opinions as it stretches the sentence out and doesn't really add anything meaningful. They wrote a paper citing experts, like all papers published in journals.Cadwallader (talk) 14:22, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
On the contrary. Oppenheimer and Wirtz's article derives much of its relevancy from the numerous academics they consulted, who haven't themselves published on the topic, and so are cited as "personal communications" in the article. Oppenheimer and Wirtz are noted as sharp legal thinkers (each served in Presidential administrations, and Wirtz was a legal scholar at Yale, if I remember correctly) and as such, they realized that they themselves lacked the specific authority and expertise to dissect Fell's claims; so they consulted those who did. A quick summary of this basis for the arguments of their article is fine.
Of course, rewording as needed for clarity and style would be a good thing, as with your last two edits.
ClovisPt (talk) 20:01, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
Like I said, all journal papers cite other papers and expert opinions. It's included in the definition of a research paper. I view the sentence in question as part of Weller's campaign to build up all opponents of Fell as "experts", and smash down Trans-cultural diffusion literature and sources as "amateur" (check out Weller's website, he has devoted his life to this cause[[1]]). An example would be the Occasional Papers of the Epigraphic Society, which has about the same level of expertise and peer review as The West Virginia Archaeologist - which is to say, it is peer reviewed by a certain school of thought and its papers all reflect that school of thought. Ultimately, Doug Weller and his idealogical colleagues are trying to use Wikipedia to suppress Diffusionism which is a different school of thought from their Cultural Isolationist beliefs. They do this by labeling all Diffusionist theories as "cult archeology". Yes, there are the Van Danikens and Zecharia Sitchins out there, who promoted archeology to support a religious belief system, and deserve that label. But there also people like Cyrus Gordon, Barry Fell, and Thor Heyderdol who were legitimate scholars who didn't have a religious axe to grind and discussed legitimate evidence that Old World Cultures had contact and commerce with the New World Cultures in ancient times. Wikipedia's NPOV policy requires that the Diffusionist point of view be fairly represented. Is that so difficult? Weller cannot bear for a Diffusionist claim or idea to be mentioned without immediate refutation. He is promoting his position, religiously.Cadwallader (talk) 13:52, 15 April 2008 (UTC)
Someone needs to read WP:TPG about using Talk pages to abuse other editors. The Talk page is meant to discuss the content of the article. Also, WP:AGF starts "To assume good faith is a fundamental principle on Wikipedia". Fell didn't have a religious axe to grind, but he clearly had an axe to grind.
Note that archaeologists use the word very differently than Cadwallader, Fell, etc to. See for instance Trans-cultural diffusion. Archaeologists one and all accept diffusionism as a fact. Cadwallader's use of the terms is shared with Fell, etc., people who are at times referred to as hyperdiffusionists -- eg Fell, who saw North America as a crossroads for many Old World cultures.
I stand by NPOV, which indeed requires "representing significant views fairly, proportionately and without bias." I disagree strongly with the equation of the Epigraphic Society with the Council for West Virginia Archaeology or the equation of their publications.
I would like an apology from Cadwallader. Hyperdiffusionism (or the viewpoint advocated by Fell if you prefer) should not be suppressed from Wikipedia, and I would strongly object to doing that. I cound among my friends whom I have helped in the past several Fell supporters, by the way.Doug Weller (talk) 15:13, 15 April 2008 (UTC)

Is a new article in order?[edit]

Perhaps a way out of this impasse is to go beyond the focus on Barry Fell and develop an article on Hyperdiffusionism or Trans-Atlantic Diffusionism or New-World Diffusionism, that would present it as an example of a notable minority point of view. This procedure is outlined in the Neutral Point of View policy. In such an article the claims of its advocates and critics could be fairly presented and "though a view may be spelled out in great detail, the article should make appropriate reference to the majority viewpoint wherever relevant, and must not reflect an attempt to rewrite majority-view content strictly from the perspective of the minority view." Although I wouldn't represent it as a perfect example, this approach is tried at New Chronology (Fomenko). --SteveMcCluskey (talk) 15:59, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

PS Perhaps rather than a separate page a more relevant place to present such material would be Pre-Columbian trans-oceanic contact#Possible trans-oceanic contact. --SteveMcCluskey (talk) 16:07, 19 April 2008 (UTC)

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Words_to_avoid#Article_structures_that_can_imply_a_point_of_view and the esssay WP:Crit -- of course, if this was split off, the Fell article would have to be little more than a comment on his career and a list of publications, and watched to make sure it stayed that way. And I don't see how the problem of an uncivil editor would be avoided that way.Doug Weller (talk) 19:15, 19 April 2008 (UTC)
Please let's not create a WP:POV fork. This article is now quite reasonable. If there is a bit of sourced material to add to the Pre-Columbian transoceanic contact article, then good. One sentence would probably be adequate, with a link to this page. Itsmejudith (talk) 11:28, 21 April 2008 (UTC)

Re: Fell and Flavin[edit]

I don't have a problem with being quoted in Wikipedia, though reading about how I telephoned someone recently comes as a genuine surprise. I don't approve of such ego-centric nonsense. My web-site and contact information is public knowledge and if ANYONE has a question, comment, or wishes further information they should not hesitate to contact me. Unfortunately I can't invest the time to "correct" Wikipedia entries or I wouldn't have any time left for other writing.(Rdflavin (talk) 15:13, 17 August 2008 (UTC))

  1. ^ Michael Crichton, from the speech "Aliens Cause Global Warming", given at Caltech, Pasadena, CA, January 17, 2003, reprinted here: http://www.crichton-official.com/speech-alienscauseglobalwarming.html