Talk:George Zimmerman

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Sandyhook comment included now?[edit]

Earlier, there was much debate about whether it was appropriate to include the statement from a police chief who said he agreed with the perspective that Zimmerman was a "Sandy Hook waiting to happen." [1] Now that he has been charged with threatening his girlfriend with a gun, the police chief's comment seems quite appropriate. Granted, he hasn't killed several children, but the statement seems rather in-context now. Can the Sandy Hook reference be included in the article now? (talk) 00:37, 20 November 2013 (UTC)

Have the two been linked by a secondary source? We are not going to connect them here. Regardless, the reasons for not including it before still apply, to exactly the same degree. VQuakr (talk) 01:44, 20 November 2013 (UTC)
I was under the impression that Wikipedia was a community consensus, not a dictatorial website where one person proclaims themselves "we" as in "we are not going to connect them here." The obvious point here being that the police chief's comments can no longer be singled-out as the isolated, out-of-context comments of one person. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)
"Dictatorial" melodrama aside, community consensus is that our BLP policies cannot be overridden by local consensus on a single article talk page (ie here). "We" refers to the editing community. The Sandy Hook reference is no less isolated or out of context than it was before. VQuakr (talk) 21:11, 21 November 2013 (UTC)
It's not "melodrama," but rather reading two entries above this one, to point out that you unilaterally spoke for the entire Wikipedia community when you referred to your opinion using "we." Thanks. (talk) 22:48, 22 November 2013 (UTC)
Do you practice in front of the mirror at night to see how dismissive of others' opinions you can be? -Waidawut (talk) 19:54, 22 August 2014 (UTC)

Jewish descent on his father's side[edit]

In the Real Time with Bill Maher interview Robert Zimmerman says that his father descends from jews who changed their surname to Zimmerman. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:21, 19 December 2013 (UTC) Can someone add that he is of jewish descent or german-jewish descent? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:30, 19 December 2013 (UTC)

He says in the interview "not Jewish". -- GreenC 18:57, 19 December 2013 (UTC)
He says in the interview that his father's ancestors were jewish and that they took the name zimmerman to hide from the nazis. Alot of jewish people do not practice judaism but are still called jewish on wikipedia. At least put in that his father's side of the family comes from jewish stock. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:39, 23 December 2013 (UTC)
He actually said that he "believes" that his grandfather is decent from one of those Jewish people that changed their name to the non-Jewish German name Zimmermann to escape prosecution by the Nazis. So a belief is not a fact and not suitable for a BLP.TMCk (talk) 23:27, 23 December 2013 (UTC)
His father is a Southern Baptist. In that Bill Maher interview, Robert Zimmerman says that their family isn't of Jewish heritage, but that some Zimmermans are. All Hallow's Wraith (talk) 08:27, 17 August 2014 (UTC)

Its completely irrelevant to his BLP since it has nothing to do with why he is notable, and he does not identify in any way as Jewish. His genealogy may be of interest to him and his family. It is not relevant to this article. Gaijin42 (talk) 12:54, 17 August 2014 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the proposal was moved. --BDD (talk) 18:48, 25 March 2014 (UTC)

George M. ZimmermanGeorge Zimmerman – I understand wanting to disambiguate, but he is rarely referred to with his middle initial, while the others (George O. and George J.) are. Taylor Trescott - my talk + my edits 22:45, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

  • Support· George M. ZimmermanGeorge Zimmerman, as proposed by Taylor Trescott – George Michael Zimmerman is commonly known as "George Zimmerman" and the article should bear that title per the policy on using the common name. Almost no sources (and very few of the sources cited in his Wikipedia biography) refer to him as George M. Zimmerman or George Michael Zimmerman, whereas the physicist and the mayor of Buffalo are referred to fairly commonly in sources as George O. Zimmerman and George J. Zimmermann, respectively. Of the three, the most widely discussed in sources by far appears to be George Zimmerman of Seminole County, Florida (ie, George M. Zimmerman), as shown by Google searches for "George Zimmerman", which return information primarily about that George Zimmerman. Also note that the Wikipedia article on George J. Zimmermann, who died more than 70 years ago, essentially remains a stub, with just one source cited, although it was created 5 years ago. The page has been viewed 1269 in the last 90 days. The article on George O. Zimmerman, the 79-year-old emeritus professor of physics, was not even created until a little more than a month ago; only 6 sources are cited; only two editors have contributed to the article; and the page has been viewed only 55 times since its creation. By contrast, the article on the George Zimmerman known for the shooting of Trayvon Martin, created two years ago, cites approximately 55 sources, has had scores of contributors, and has been viewed almost 300,000 times in the past 90 days. In short, the primary topic readers are after when they come to Wikipedia for information on George Zimmerman is the George Zimmerman known for the shooting of Trayvon Martin.
Entering "George Zimmerman" in the Wikipedia search box should take readers directly to the biography on the Zimmerman of Florida. A hatnote should be available in the article directing those who are seeking information on one of the other George Zimmerman(n)s to a disambiguation page, similar to how Wikipedia handles the names "Muhammad Ali", "Steve McQueen", "Bill Clinton", "John Howard", and "Joe Clark". Dezastru (talk) 00:56, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support Sure that's an ok idea. I did the move to solve technically the dab problem with no agenda about the article name. You never know if I did it the other way someone might have complained because the other GZ's sometimes go by "George Zimmerman" (or Zimmermann) without middle initial and given his notorious reputation it might be a problem. Ultimately it comes down to a question of primary topic, which this probably has. -- GreenC 01:33, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose The individual that is the subject of this biography has the full identifying name of George M. Zimmerman. We are not a tabloid and we should not be following trends in popular culture in choosing a title for an article on this subject. Therefore it should matter minimally to us that he may be "commonly known" as "George Zimmerman". WP:COMMONNAME is in fact not applicable here. The subject of this biography is not (note the examples at WP:COMMONNAME) a well-known politician or entertainer. The subject of this biography had renown thrust upon him through one incident. (A tragic incident.) He should simply be referred to (in our title) by whatever his correct name is, with consideration given to disambiguation from other people with similar names. This person is essentially a private individual who did not choose fame or notoriety. Again—this is a person who was involved in a tragic incident. This person did not run for political office or perfect a scheme for entertaining people. This article's present title is adequate because it is in keeping with the generally serious purpose of an encyclopedia. Bus stop (talk) 02:44, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
The reason for the subject's notability (or notoriety), or their own contribution to it, has no bearing on this question. As Green Cardamom correctly states, the relevant policy here is primary topic. There is no question that the vast majority of those users searching for a George Zimmerman will be looking for George M. Zimmerman, not George J. or George O., hence this (the primary topic) is where they should arrive first, then have the opportunity to disambiguate if it turns out he's not the one they seek. Dwpaul Talk 02:51, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
"WP:COMMONNAME is in fact not applicable here" because why exactly? That policy on using the common name rather than the "official" name applies to all kinds of article titles, not just to names of people who are politicians or entertainers. It applies to names of foods, animal species, laws of physics, obscure cities in ancient Greece, etc. Dezastru (talk) 02:58, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
Agreed. The examples at WP:COMMONNAME were selected from popular entertainers and politicians only to provide familiar examples; there is absolutely nothing there that says it only applies to people (or things) that became notable by choice. Dwpaul Talk 03:10, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
I Agree, if WP:COMMONNAME was meant to only apply to people who were famous by choice I am sure the guideline in question would have mentioned that.-- (talk) 03:04, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support The most notable by a long shot. They should have the main link, with a disambiguation hattip. Gaijin42 (talk) 20:57, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support He is best known as "George Zimmerman" and is the best known person of that name. So DISAMBIG says this article should be the main page with a link at the top to the disambiguation page. TFD (talk) 21:27, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support per the above. DBaK (talk) 21:51, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support, I was a bout to ask the same. © Tbhotch (en-2.5). 21:56, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose – Just because the killer is currently better known is no reason to send all inquiries right there. Dicklyon (talk) 05:11, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Actually, per WP:PRIMARYUSAGE it is. VQuakr (talk) 05:36, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Comment The problem is an inexplicable editorial need to explore every nook and cranny of an incident—a tragic incident—that has modern day racial overtones. We have the following articles: State of Florida v. George Zimmerman, Shooting of Trayvon Martin, Trayvon Martin, George M. Zimmerman, Timeline of the shooting of Trayvon Martin, Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago, World War Zimmerman. Wikipedia doesn't merely cover the tragedy of the death of Trayvon Martin, but rather it duplicates some information in several articles. The name of the individual covered in this article is "George M. Zimmerman". That is not his stage name. That is his actual name. He has not sought to be in the spotlight. He was involved in a tragic interaction on February 26, 2012 which thrust him involuntarily into a spotlight of public scrutiny. My argument is that we should not consider ourselves at liberty to shorten his name. It should not matter to us that the media commonly refer to him as "George Zimmerman". Our primary concern should be with identifying him. That is best accomplished by using his full name (including middle initial). Bus stop (talk) 15:16, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
In actual fact, his full name is George Michael Zimmerman, not George M. Zimmerman. Do you have any evidence he shortens it by using the middle initial as opposed to shortening it by omitting his middle name entirely or not shortening it at all? But that's not the point at issue. We use WP:COMMONNAME on Wikipedia. If he's not commonly referred to as George M. Zimmerman in reliable sources then that isn't what we call him. If you want to change the policy then try it on the policy's talkpage, not on individual article talkpages. I very much doubt whether you'll succeed, however. -- Necrothesp (talk) 15:26, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
I think the present title is an embodiment of commonsense, more so than the suggested move. Sure—"George Michael Zimmerman" would also suffice. But it is unnecessary for disambiguation purposes. Bus stop (talk) 15:43, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
So, why exactly are you suggesting we should go against our own policy and style guide, agreed after much discussion and in place for many years, for this one individual? -- Necrothesp (talk) 16:06, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
"The title indicates what the article is about and distinguishes it from other articles. The title may simply be the name (or a name) of the subject of the article, or it may be a description of the topic."[2] This is not the departure from policy that you are suggesting. Bus stop (talk) 16:36, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
"Adding middle names, or their abbreviations, merely for disambiguation purposes (if that format of the name is not commonly used to refer to the person) is not advised." Wikipedia:Naming conventions (people)#Middle names and initials. -- Necrothesp (talk) 13:52, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
You said above: "Rename to George Zimmerman (something to be determined)". Can you give me an example of any word or words that could possibly be placed within those parentheses? Bus stop (talk) 18:39, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support Per common name, notability, reliable sourcing and common sense. Isaidnoway (talk) 19:45, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose due to their being other people named "George Zimmerman" as shown in the disambiguation page. To avoid ambiguity, his title should be more specific like keeping his middle initial "M" in the title or perhaps adding something in parentheses like "George Zimmerman (murderer)" or "George Zimmerman (criminal)". XXSNUGGUMSXX (talk) 16:16, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Your comment is a pretty blatant WP:BLP violation. I suggest you remove it. Gaijin42 (talk) 16:20, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
My guess is you're suggesting that having "murderer" or "criminal" in the title goes against WP:NPOV, in which case I apologize. Perhaps it could be "convict" instead. XXSNUGGUMSXX (talk) 18:19, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Are you working under the assumption that he was found guilty of something in the shooting of Trayvon Martin? Or something else in his past? Whatever that is (if anything), are you saying that conviction is the source of his notability? If a parenthetical is needed, the appropriate NPOV one would be something like George Zimmerman (found not guilty in the shooting of Trayvon Martin) or something like that, which runs afoul of the "Conciseness" criteria for titles imo. Either that, or you are making a WP:POINT that you think he SHOULD HAVE been found guilty, in which case WP:NOTFORUM and the aformentioned WP:POINT and WP:NPOV Gaijin42 (talk) 18:39, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
It was based off of him being charged with the murder, though it looks like "murderer" or "assassin" go against WP:NPOV. He is unquestionably best known for the controversy. I wasn't trying to make WP:POINT or anything, though, or insert my personal opinion of the case. If no parentheticals, then it is best to just leave as "George M. Zimmerman". XXSNUGGUMSXX (talk) 18:51, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support as per WP:CONCISE, primary topic, common name... Red Slash 22:35, 19 March 2014 (UTC)
  • Support - while this is probably the result of recentism, this George Zimmerman is currently the primary topic by a wide margin based on page views. In a few years, when the public will have forgotten about him, perhaps the issue should be revisited, but we're not there yet. Parsecboy (talk) 18:24, 25 March 2014 (UTC)


The purpose of Primary Topic is to establish if an article is more likely for readers to search on. George M. Zimmerman is roughly 100 to 1,000 times more likely to be clicked on than the others. A strong statistical signal that George M. Zimmerman is a primary topic. -- GreenC 15:55, 14 March 2014 (UTC)

Procedural objection[edit]

This request would need to be a multiple RM, with notices on the other affected pages. Given that it is malformed (the target page name being occupied already), it should be closed procedurally and restarted correctly. Dicklyon (talk) 05:13, 11 March 2014 (UTC)

  • I object to your objection. Wikipedia is (allegedly) not a bureaucracy. This page was quite recently boldly moved with a disambig page started at the old location - holding a discussion before undoing it is a great idea but not necessary per WP:BRD. Everyone would care would be watching this page. In any case, I do not see anything particularly malformed about this request. VQuakr (talk) 05:33, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
  • I'll notify the other two articles about this discussion. -- GreenC 06:08, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
Ok I added talk page notices at George O. and George J., and added {{Disputed title}} to the top of George Zimmerman directing here. -- GreenC 06:19, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
  • This move would only be malformed if done incorrectly. The only other directly affected page is the newly created disambiguation page, which can easily move to George Zimmerman (disambiguation). Dwpaul Talk 12:45, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
  • also object to objection It is proper to notify the other pages, but the move does not directly affect those pages. Gaijin42 (talk) 14:56, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
  • The disambiguation page George Zimmerman has been viewed 82,000 times in the last 30 days.[7], George J. Zimmermann has been viewed 500 times,[8] George O. Zimmerman has been viewed 200 times,[9] and George M. Zimmerman has been viewed 6000 times. Do we want 80,000 readers each month who are looking for George M. Zimmerman to go to a disambiguation page and then pick him out of the list? And George J.'s surname isn't even spelled the same. TFD (talk) 17:59, 12 March 2014 (UTC)
    • There wasn't even a disambiguation page until 3 days ago when this article was moved from George Zimmerman to George M. Zimmerman. and then the redirect left behind was converted to the current disambiguation page. The stats page for George Zimmerman is reading the views to this article until the time it was moved and then on 9 March it starts looking at the views of the dab page. George M Zimmerman has already been viewed 6000 times in the last 3 days. GB fan 18:12, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Request for closure[edit]

I initially closed this discussion, on the basis that there have been no further comments for four days and the !votes so far are 910 (including the nom) in support of the move with 4 opposed or recommending alternative action. I then thought the better of my closure, since I have participated in the discussion. Request that an uninvolved admin (or non-admin per WP:RMNAC) close this discussion and complete the move. Dwpaul Talk 00:18, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.


All the links to Zimmerman's page still link to "George M. Zimmerman" instead of "George Zimmerman." -- (talk) 01:56, 31 March 2014 (UTC)

Fixed. --GreenC 15:45, 31 March 2014 (UTC)


This talk page has grown large, making it slow and unwieldy to load. General talk page guidelines suggest setting up archiving when a page “exceeds 75 kb or has more than 10 main topics”; this page is now about 205 kb and has almost 40 main topics. Would there be any objection to setting up automatic archiving here, so that some of the older and inactive discussion topics can migrate to the archives?  Unician   06:42, 7 September 2014 (UTC)

Archiving is fine but automated has pros and cons. Most of the discussion on this page happened within the first few months of article creation and it's pretty much resolved at this point, there has been very little discussion lately. I would be OK with a 1-time archive of the current page. -- GreenC 13:53, 7 September 2014 (UTC)
How about these automated-archive settings to start:
  • Always keep the most recent five topics here
  • Archive only when there are two or more topics eligible
The discussions are old enough that any typical age/date setting would have the same effect: all but the five most recent topics will be archived in the first run, then nothing further will be archived until at least two new topics are started. This would have the same immediate effect as a one-time manual process. We can then leave the automated process in place, since it won't do anything more until more activity prompts it to.
 Unician   07:12, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
OK. Sounds reasonable. -- GreenC 13:25, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
I've set the parameters, it should run within 24 hours.  Unician   08:58, 9 September 2014 (UTC)