- I think the existing hatnote of the article can point toward some ideas. I tend to think myself "culture", broadly defined, is acceptably used in the current title, but maybe something like "Cultural impact of potential extraterrestrial contact" or "Cultural impact of confirmed extraterrestrial contact" might be clearer. There is no particular point in even speculating about what if any cultural impact contact with Earth would have on extraterrestrial cultures themselves, so I think the implied "on Earth" could reasonably be not included in the title. John Carter (talk) 20:48, 16 December 2012 (UTC)
- I have no objection to the addition of "potential", "future", or "confirmed" in the current title, but Tony's argument is just plain wrong. The current title does not assume contact has already taken place nor does any single word in the current article imply such an idea. Wer900, science and technology is always classified as part of human culture (see for example epistemic culture and science, technology and society), and the sources discuss such an impact on science and technology in the context of its impact on culture. In fact, one common argument against the ETH is that it appears to be anti-science, as it would destroy the current culture, practice, and epistemic foundation of science if it became true, hence the cultural "impact". The history of first contact on Earth between highly technological human cultures and less advanced ones results in destruction of the less advanced culture, and sometimes assimilation or extinction. Our culture and practice of science and technology is in no way immune. Viriditas (talk) 00:24, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- You're right about Tony's argument being false; a hatnote should be enough to clarify to those people who are in the substantial-yet-tiny-minority group who believe that extraterrestrial contact has happened in the recent past. From the course of my research that went into this article, it's not at all unlikely that extraterrestrials have visited the Earth before, or they have probes currently within our Solar System; we just haven't detected these yet. The most assumption that I can see coming from this article is that extraterrestrial contact is a real possibility, or likely if you want to stretch it, a position which is supported anyway by numerous reliable sources and shouldn't be fodder for Tony's unsupported assumptions argument.Wer900 • talk 00:42, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- I don't know. The likelihood of these things and the assumptions of contact are all culture-bound concepts. If we were having this discussion a few centuries ago, we might be talking about contact with fairies and angels. A few centuries before that, we might be talking about gods and goddesses. The whole topic is culture-bound. One can just as easily speculate about the interdimensional hypothesis, simulated reality, time travel, and other ideas. We have enough trouble trying to communicate with each other and our closest animal relatives. Viriditas (talk) 10:50, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- I think that the mention of fairies is a bit of a stretch - we are well into the scientific era at this point. Given the abundance of habitable planets in space, as well as the abundance of organic molecules, I would be surprised if there were not any other extraterrestrial intelligences in our galaxy. But that is, again, a topic for other articles.Wer900 • talk 02:15, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- H. floresiensis might very well have been seen as a kind of "fairy" by other species of humans on Earth. There may have been multiple hominid species interacting with each other, from H. neanderthalensis to Denisova hominins, to perhaps the Red Deer Cave people. Oral cultures might have recorded these interactions as cultural memories in the form of repeated myths and folk tales. Along the way, the stories could have changed along with the culture, transforming into supernatural beings and events. It depends on how your culture sees fairies. Science fiction and fantasy literature is replete with tales of aliens living in the mind, in dreams or drugs, and in the shadows. Culturally, at this point in time, we "expect" extraterrestrials to exist on other planets and to communicate with us using radio. You can see how silly that culture-bound concept might appear. Previously in the past, these entities might be expected to live in caves, or in the mountains, or on the Moon, and to communicate with us through an intermediary like a sorceress or a shaman, or through the spirits of the dead. At the end of the day, we are dealing with a form of culture-bound molecular chauvinism. In any case, like you, I lean towards the principle of mediocrity, but we should also consider that we are blinded by our own prejudices while examining this problem. Viriditas (talk) 03:02, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- The misconceptions on extraterrestrial life are exactly why I think that this article is worthy of existence and fame. I, personally, think that extraterrestrial life exists, just as do many other scientists. Although at this point there is no 100% confirmation of that, and there are widely varying positions on this (from Rare Earth to Sagan's million extraterrestrial intelligences) I think that we will fall somewhere in between, as has often happened in science, with some tens, at most a hundred or so, advanced extraterrestrial civilizations, with billions more planets hosting life. Remember, the stories of fairies did have some basis in truth (Homo floresiensis) and were gradually expanded upon to give them properties that modern scientists do not see them having. Similarly, the existence of extraterrestrial intelligence in our galaxy is probably (99.99999%) true, but the body of material we have built up around them is wrong. In this article, which can never be 100% accurate until relations with extraterrestrials can be established, we use the best of our knowledge to clean up these misconceptions and create a more plausible framework for the operation of ETI. I think that we should end this thread of discussion at this, because this is an unnecessary tangent that distracts from the main purpose.
We need to recruit other uninvolved editors, particularly science/technology ones. History/anthropology would seem good, although I don't think that people in those fields have any level of understanding of the literature on this article's subject. Wer900 • talk 04:40, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- Tony presumably being Wer900 in the above, I do agree that by current naming guidelines there is no implied or expressed indication in the existing title that contact has taken place, so no addition to the existing title is strictly necessary. Having said that, I suppose, in an extremely unlikely possibility that some form of CETI were established sometime in the near future (I personally think my local Girls Scouts team has a better chance of winning the Super Bowl), maybe moving this page to such a proposed title would make it easier to develop that extremely unlikely possible content. John Carter (talk) 00:33, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- Sorry for the confusion. Wer900 refers to the previous discussion which included a FAC "oppose" from User:Tony1 because of the title. If you could move the page right now, which title would you choose? Viriditas (talk) 00:38, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- Actually, of the three options, "potential," "confirmed", and "future", based on the arguments which have been made in some sources that ET contact has taken place, I could see objections to each of them, from some given perspective. "Confirmation" might be impossible, if one were dealing with a truly otherwise inexplicable artifact, or given the current love of academics to put forward sometimes even ridiculous assertions if it might get them some media attention and more money as a result, "potential" might be seen as referring exclusively to some future event, apparently ruling out any sort of earlier contact having any impact to date, and "future" has the same problems. So, in a sense, I have to say none of the three go without some sort of potential objections as well. Maybe this is a case of the devil we know being better than the devil we don't - the existing title is possibly most theoretically neutral about all those matters. John Carter (talk) 00:57, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- (Uninvolved editor summonsed by autobot) Speculation concerning the likely Cultural Impact of communication with intelligent extraterrestrial life forms would be a bit of a mouthful -would it describe the article well ?--— ⦿⨦⨀Tumadoireacht Talk/Stalk 10:17, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- I don't think that would work very well. For one, we don't use strange titles constructed by Wikipedia editors out of artificial phrases—we use common terms found in the literature, which the current title accurately reflects. Second, the terms "speculation" and "likely" don't fit here. The topic is, in and of itself speculation, and there's no reason to describe it in the title; aliens aren't here, and we haven't been impacted by their non-presence. Third, the term "likely" has no place in the title as the likelihood isn't under discussion or important. Fourth, calling ET a "life form" is highly controversial. We could very well be dealing with intelligent machines, for example Bracewell probes engaged in directed panspermia or communication with other intelligent civilizations. Perhaps it is nothing more than Siri on steroids. Definitions of life are entirely arbitrary and may not have any role to play here. I'm afraid this title doesn't work at all. As I see it, there is nothing wrong with the current title, "cultural impact of extraterrestrial contact", and it nicely encapsulates the topic. Since extraterrestrial contact has not occurred, and cultural impact has not taken place, "speculation" is implicit. I am still confused by Tony1's claim that the title suggests otherwise. Perhaps we comprehend language in different ways, which is entirely normal. Viriditas (talk) 10:35, 17 December 2012 (UTC)
- I think that the use of "life" is okay if taken generously (We might not be directly interacting with life-forms, but we could be interacting with probes created by them. Whether they live as intelligent machines or not is hard to guess as biology combined with a robot surrogate for dangerous situations can serve practically any purpose that an artificially intelligent robot would. Thus, extraterrestrial intelligent beings are likely to be life (why go through the pain of brain surgery for practically no benefit?) although it would be superfluous to state this in the title. Wer900 • talk 00:04, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- I agree that it would be superfluous in the title, but if you've studied biology than you know that being able to separate life from non-life is an arbitrary distinction. When is something alive and when is it dead? Good luck trying to answer that question, because there isn't any answer. Viriditas (talk) 00:09, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- It would be likely that they function based on similar organic molecules to us (possibly DNA/RNA) given the ease at which that can be made, but that's another question for another day. Right now we are trying to discuss the title, and now I think we have eliminated all assumptions that a definition of life is even germane to this. Wer900 • talk 00:59, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- Comment This RFC is not clearly stated and the discussion is rambling in an almost comical way (if you doubt me just try listing the things that have been discussed in a few dozen lines!). This is not terribly surprising given that the article is a mashup of varied sources and speculation. What is that Dyson sphere doing in there? A title could help define scope, to enable a teardown/rewrite of the article. -- Scray (talk) 03:19, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- I think the RfC is clear and the discussion shows there is nothing wrong with the title. The presence of the Dyson sphere in the article is clearly explained and on topic. I don't see any synthesis at all, in fact. Are we reading the same RfC and article? The vast majority of this aricle has been vetted by dozens of established authors through multiple reviews. Viriditas (talk) 04:27, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- Just an uninvolved editor coming by to comment in response to RFCbot. I find the article rambling, like the discussion above. If my voice is solitary, then I'm probably wrong. -- Scray (talk) 04:40, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- I don't think you're wrong. The image caption for the Dyson sphere doesn't explain why it is in the article, but the content does. So, I think you identified a problem with the image caption that should be fixed. Yes, the RfC is rambling, but your opinion is important. If the article is still problematic, we should address it, so your criticism is needed. Viriditas (talk) 04:45, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- The following is the full text of the Dyson sphere caption: "An advanced extraterrestrial civilization would probably not attempt projects with severe ecological implications, like the construction of a Dyson sphere." This is a view well-supported by sources. Wer900 • talk 05:13, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- The issue isn't the sources, it's how he caption doesn't connect with the topic while the discussion of the Dyson sphere in the article body does. The caption should be modified to more reflect its discussion about the topic. Viriditas (talk) 05:19, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- I did read the text. I find it odd to devote one of six images in this article to a crudely-drawn diagram of something another species is unlikely to do. The sources cover the topic and the Dyson sphere in particular, so it bears mention but this figure should not be there. This illustrates what I see overall - a cobbled-together set of well-sourced statements, many of which are pure speculation (even speculation is found in good sources), lacking cohesion or balance as a whole. It's not just the caption. -- Scray (talk) 11:39, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- I'm inclined to agree with you on the image. I believe the problem stems from trying to actually find images, so the primary editor added what they could. Is it ideal? No, but we would love to replace it with something else that better illustrates the topic. If you can think of something, let us know. I'm interested in hearing more about what lacks cohesion or balance. We could certainly use some fresh eyes. It's not just speculation, it's a thought experiment, and we have plenty of established articles on similar outlandish (or unlikely) topics. Viriditas (talk) 12:11, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- According to our article on Thought experiment, Prefactual (before the fact) thought experiments speculate on possible future outcomes, given the present, and ask "What will be the outcome if event E occurs?"; thus, I really do think this is well-sourced speculation. That said, when real life permits I'll go through the article more methodically. -- Scray (talk) 15:57, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
- Fellow editors, I give you a list... Krushia (talk) 05:04, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
- List of title suggestions
Be bold and add to it, voice your favorites, battle for consensus,
strikeout the losers, and close the RFC.
- Speculative consequences of extraterrestrial contact
- Popular first contact scenarios
- Societal views of extraterrestrial contact
- Predicted outcomes of extraterrestrial contact
- Extraterrestrial contact scenarios
- Philosophical views of human-extraterrestrial relationships
- Prefactual extraterrestrial contact implications
- Human opinions of extraterrestrial contact
- Cultural impact of potential extraterrestrial contact
- Cultural impact of confirmed extraterrestrial contact
- Speculation concerning the likely cultural impact of communication with intelligent extraterrestrial life forms
- Extraterrestrial contact predictions
- Wer900's opinions:
- Speculative consequences of extraterrestrial contact
Popular first contact scenarios - makes the page sound like it's a science-fiction topic. Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Societal views of extraterrestrial contact - these are not "societal views" but those of scientists, theologians, lawyers, and priests. Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Predicted outcomes of extraterrestrial contact - this sounds like we are certain on the results of ET contact; not true. Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Extraterrestrial contact scenarios - fails to encompass whole article; assessment is also discussed here. Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Philosophical views of human-extraterrestrial relationships - there may not even be a "relationship" if we are contacted by radio/unmanned probe Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Prefactual extraterrestrial contact implications - the predictions are made prefactually but the impact in question is postfactual. Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
Human opinions of extraterrestrial contact - same reasoning as #1 or #2; not solely about views on contact themselves. Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
- Cultural impact of potential extraterrestrial contact
- Cultural impact of confirmed extraterrestrial contact
Speculation concerning the likely cultural impact of communication with intelligent extraterrestrial life forms - too long, and found nowhere in the literature. Wer900 • talk 05:43, 19 December 2012 (UTC)
- Extraterrestrial contact predictions
- Delete - Forget any discussions about titles and FAs. This page ought to nominated for deletion as it fairly obviously falls afoul of WP:NOTCRYSTALBALL. NickCT (talk) 20:20, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
- Nick, I appreciate your input, but it would be helpful if you actually read the policies you cite. This article is not unverifiable, therefore CRYSTALBALL does not apply. I hope that clears up your objection. Viriditas (talk) 21:36, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
- I'd like to add to this that this article was written as I had read CRYSTALBALL, survived an AfC review, a discussion on the talk page on the validity of this article, and a (successful) GA nomination. At this stage deletion has been well-considered but seen as unnecessary. And remember, I never claimed this would be 100% accurate, and remember this is a very non-specific article. This is not literature to be written after extraterrestrial contact, it is much more broad than that. Wer900 • talk 00:29, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- @Viriditas - "Individual scheduled or expected future events should be included only if the event is notable and almost certain to take place." - Is that simple enough English for you? Care to explain how this article escapes that clause? CRYSTALBALL is hobbled by folks pushing the whole "verifiable speculation is OK" shenanigans. The basic fact is that all speculation that ever saw the light of day is in print somewhere in some source. This article pretty clearly runs counter to the spirit of CRYSTALBALL and is good example of the type of speculative nonsense that cheapens Wikipedia. Honestly..... It's enough to make one want to switch to Britanica.
- @Wer900 - re "I had read CRYSTALBALL" - Great. Did you appreciate it though? re "survived an AfC" - Do you mean survived an AfD? AfC is article for creation. You don't really "survive" those. re "GA nomination" - GAs have been deleted before. re " well-considered but seen as unnecessary." - Has there been an AfD. If not, it hasn't been "well considered" and we should probably start one. If there has been an AfD it should be linked at the top of the talk page. re "much more broad than that" - Broad future speculation is still future speculation. It doesn't really matter how broad or narrow it is. NickCT (talk) 15:05, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- Nick, this isn't a scheduled or expected event, and there isn't a single word in CRYSTALBALL that applies to this article. Please read the policy again and stop cherry picking phrases to suit your preconceptions. This is a verifiable subject based on a wide variety of the best sources in the literature. As a result, CRYSTAL does not apply. Based on your deliberate misreading of policy, you would attempt to delete tens of thousands of articles, such as the future of the Earth, Andromeda–Milky Way collision, clathrate gun hypothesis, technological singularity, and many more. The article survived an AfC, because it meets and exceeds out standards, and yes, it survived, because if it doesn't pass AfC, it does not get created. If you want to take it to AfD, do so, but stop using an RfC to vote for deletion. That ain't how it works. Viriditas (talk) 21:26, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- re "there isn't a single word in CRYSTALBALL that applies to this article" - Really? A policy covering articles related to future events doesn't relate at all to this article (i.e. an article covering a theoretical future event)?
- Frankly, I don't think anyone would miss Future of the Earth, which strikes me as more synthetic crystal balling. Andromeda–Milky Way collision is probably ok though. The collision is at least an expected event covered by real scientists. This alien shenanigans first speculates that there are little green men out there, then continues to speculate about what it would be like to meet them. Pure fantasy land stuff.
- Perhaps I will AfD this. Realistically, I'd imagine an AfD wouldn't make it. Unfortunately inclusionism seems to protecting pseudoscientifc personal interest scifi articles like this. Same guys are protecting Toilet paper orientation, making WP a laughing stock. Regardless, the discussion is probably worth having..... NickCT (talk) 22:12, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- This is becoming a WP:IDONTLIKEIT rationale behind deletion. This has nothing at all to do with toilet paper orientation - it is a topic discussed by scientists, theologians, and other academics, not just an absurd topic whose place is popular culture. Future of the Earth is a perfectly valid article. Your extremely narrow-minded and ignorant interpretation of WP:CRYSTALBALL means that every article that attempts to analyze the future in some way should be deleted. You state that you would keep Andromeda-Milky Way collision, but according to your judgment on Future of the Earth that should be removed. Future of the Earth has a perfectly valid reason for existence as the topics discussed within are a topic of academic discussion, not of popular culture masquerading as science. This article is similar. This is not "pseudoscientific personal interest", it is a topic that has, again, been taken up by people with far more knowledge than you or most editors on this encyclopedia.
It would also be helpful if you read up on the policy WP:SYNTHESIS a bit more. I am not coming to any conclusion that has not been reached by the sources, and in fact there is no one conclusion at all of this.
Through your policy zealotry, I see that you want to relegate this article to the dustbin of popular culture, where it does not belong. Should we also AfD Future of an expanding universe, List of emerging technologies, and any other topic that deals with the future? No! The encyclopedia and the world are losing out on valuable information with views of individuals like you. I am no inclusionist (having tagged for speedy deletion articles that were eventually put through AfD) but I think that this article has perfectly valid reasons for existing. You are not bringing up a point that has not been discussed before. Perhaps it would behoove you to look through the archives of this talk page, and from there substantiate your opinions. Wer900 • talk 22:54, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- I would furthermore like to add that WP:CRYSTAL explicitly states the following: " As an exception, even highly speculative articles about events that may or may not occur far in the future might be appropriate, where coverage in reliable sources is sufficient."
There you have it. I read this before writing the article and I feel that for this specific support by policy the existence (and promotion) of my article is well-justified. Also, AfC, as Viriditas said, means that the article meets our standards for inclusion, meaning that it passes the threshold before which it would be deleted. Continual review (and keeping) by multiple editors of an article is validation that in the opinion of the community the article is worth being on the encyclopedia. Wer900 • talk 23:05, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- While we might not like NickCT's criticisms, they may help us to improve the article. If there are any pseudoscientific statements in the article, I would invite Nick to help us identify and eliminate them. It's very likely that the article could have problems that nobody has yet identified, so while we disagree with Nick's legitimate POV that in his opinion, all futures studies-related articles are inherently pseudoscientific, that opinion shouldn't detract us from improving it. Regardless of Nick's view, scientists and policy makers are working on developing post-detection policies and protocols and this article is a subset of their interdisciplinary space policy work which is a legitimate topic for an encyclopedia. Viriditas (talk) 23:36, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- I personally feel that the criticism seems to be more general than specific. Making predictions about the behaviors of intelligent beings, which are not deterministic, is extremely difficult. Hence I have made the article general (and the reliable sources have hence been general) in order to ensure the highest degrees of accuracy possible. Logically looking at this article, it seems that these are actually feasible scenarios that do not go into great specificity which may compromise their validity. Wer900 • talk 23:54, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- Ok. I see logic and reasoned argument aren't going to win the day here so let me leave you with one question. If your rationale is "Well, it's verifiable so CRYSTALBALL doesn't doesn't apply", when the heck does CRYSTALBALL apply? You're basically arguing that anything that meets verifiability rules is legit. In that case, what's the point of CRYSTALBALL? Can you offer any examples of subjects/articles which meet verifiability rules, but would be inappropriate under CRYSTALBALL? If not, you're essentially saying CRYSTALLBALL is meaningless, and if that's the case it's probably an indication that you don't understand or just don't like the rule. NickCT (talk) 04:06, 26 December 2012 (UTC)
- CRYSTALBALL itself says that it makes exemptions for reliably-sourced articles on future events such as this which have been covered by individuals in academia, so by affirming this article's right to existence we are not violating policy. A small selection of articles which are perfectly valid topics but should be deleted under your narrow view of the CRYSTALBALL policy include: List of emerging technologies, Future of the Earth, Future of an expanding Universe, Futures studies, Planetary protection, Interstellar travel, and many others. This article discusses well-sourced speculation on possible future events made by actual scientists in peer-reviewed journals, which is explicitly outside of the purview of WP:CRYSTALBALL. Wer900 • talk 23:30, 26 December 2012 (UTC)
- And again.... Can you offer any examples of subjects/articles which meet verifiability rules, but would be inappropriate under CRYSTALBALL? Or is CYSTALBALL entirely meaningless in your mind? NickCT (talk) 06:44, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
- Nick, the topic is notable and the source content is verifiable; therefore, CRYSTAL does not apply. Viriditas (talk) 07:23, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
- And, Nick, before you say that we are deciding for ourselves the scope of CRYSTALBALL, I will copy-paste (again) this selection from the policy: " As an exception,even highly speculative articles about events that may or may not occur far in the future might be appropriate,where coverage in reliable sources is sufficient." As the article passes this test, it is worthy of inclusion under CRYSTALBALL. Please read previous discussion. Wer900 • talk 19:33, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
Ok. So I take it from you evasive answers that the answer is "no". You guys can't point to or think of a verifiable subject/piece of speculation that CRYSTALBALL would forbid. So if you don't think that CRYSTALBALL actually forbids anything, then you basically think the policy is pointless. @Wer900 - I take your point re "even highly speculative articles about events that may or may not occur far in the future might be appropriate", but I think you'll grant that "might be appropriate" leaves a great deal of room for interpretation. NickCT (talk) 23:38, 29 December 2012 (UTC)
- Nick, I already told you that an example of such an article would be Literature to be published in response to extraterrestrial contact or, as a more elementary one, 2060 Summer Olympics. Even if it were verifiable (which it is not), we would consider it inappropriate because there's no way of reasonably predicting how it will play out. This article speaks in generalities that are well-sourced and have a likelihood of actually being correct when contact does happen, because they are based in already-known facts about science, technology, and history. The literature example is not valid under CRYSTALBALL because it has no factual basis to support its narrow prediction. "Room for interpretation" does not mean "room for my interpretation and mine alone." It would behoove you to remember that, Nick.
With CRYSTALBALL permitting this article to exist with the exception of the "might," the discussion turns away from an explicit violation of policy and towards whether it fulfills "might" by being a legitimate topic for the encyclopedia. It is a legitimate topic, being covered extensively in many reliable sources and, as shown by there being multiple citations in the popular press, is clearly notable. Furthermore, the importance of this topic for humankind should be self-evident and, in addition to meeting all other inclusion idea, mean that this article warrants inclusion in the encyclopedia. Wer900 • talk 04:37, 30 December 2012 (UTC)
- re "I already told you that an example of such an article" - You said "under your narrow view of the CRYSTALBALL policy include", implying that those articles would be OK under YOUR interpretation. Try being a little clearer.
- re "being a legitimate topic for the encyclopedia" - Really? Is that a joke? An article like this would never appear in Britanica. If you doubt that you should really step back a check your perception of reality.
- re "there's no way of reasonably predicting how it will play out" - Ok, well 1) while that might be an interesting rule to apply, it's not part of policy, and 2) saying that one piece of speculation is a "reasonable prediction" while another piece of speculation isn't, is itself hugely speculative. You might think you can make reasonable predictions about something while others might not. NickCT (talk) 03:12, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
- Just because it "would never appear in Britanica [sic]" doesn't mean that this is not a legitimate encyclopedic article. The reason Brittanica does not carry this article is because it is not worth (for them) the research time which would be better-spent (for them) on other articles. This article meets all inclusion criteria.
As for CRYSTALBALL, there is already a statement in the policy that articles discussing speculation by academics about the future are legitimate for the encyclopedia as an exception to the policy, meaning that however the rest of the CRYSTALBALL policy is interpreted this article still has grounds for existence. I didn't fall for your strawman.
This article represents not "one piece of speculation" but the aggregate of many speculations by academics from numerous disciplines of natural and social sciences. Also, the reason this article is more valid than a more specific article is that it does not attempt to make precise predictions about whether or not Joe Bob will seek to find a bunker, but speaks more broadly. Wer900 • talk 03:51, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
- Potential impact of extraterrestrial contact - IMO covers the current artile content. The word "cultural" is out, since the article talks wider. The word "potential" is a bit redundant, but clarifies the topic: at the very least is would exclude life experiences of ufologists. If the article wold include a section on the impact of the expectations of the ET contact, then the word "ponential" must be dropped. Staszek Lem (talk) 21:49, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
- Potential impact on what? Dolphins? Rocks? The life cycle of bees? This aricle is about the potential impact on human culture, of which science and technology is intimately part of at its core, and the sources make this clear. For example, under one scenario, the impact of a more advanced ET culture contacting us could be devastating to our culture of doing science. Why research anymore when it's already been done? Why create anything? In fact, many cultures around be world either stopped creating and producing technology when they began assimilating into Western culture, or they forgot how to manufacture these things altogether. Makaloa mats that were once produced by Native Hawaiians before first contact is a good example. Another popular example is what became of science and technology when the Overlords visited Earh in the science fiction novel Childhood's End. This is about the impact on human culture. Why would we remove it from the title? Viriditas (talk) 22:05, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
- Obviously you did not read neither the current article recently nor my explanation why I removed the word "cultural". The article does have a section title which concerns impact on dolphines, rocks and bees. So calm down. If you want to restrict this page to culture, make another article, Potential impact of extraterrestrial contact and, per wikipedia:Summary style (a highly recommended reading), make summary sections in it, about impact on culture, ecology, geology and the whole solar system, sources permitting. WP:SUMMARY Quiz: What happens with the current page then? Staszek Lem (talk) 23:47, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
- The article discusses what these impacts on dolphins, rocks, and bees would mean for human culture: art, religion, science, and technology. It is not merely a discussion on environmental impacts. Hence the use of "cultural" is okay. Wer900 • talk 00:36, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- Not exactly so, but it is not a point. It does not preclude to have an article about environmental impact per se. And if there will be several articles about different impacts, then here comes a "mother of all impacts" article. Staszek Lem (talk) 23:13, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- What does preclude such an article, and other topic-specific articles as may be thought of, is the fact that there is little source material that would allow such articles to easily stand alone, and little new literature being produced on the subject. Practically all literature that falls within the purview of this article that is accessible has been used. If there is any new literature that warrants the creation of a new article, we should wait until the status of this article stabilizes (ie, this RfC ends with a clear decision on title and a decision is made by FAC reviewers) before additional material is added and new articles are created. Wer900 • talk 19:09, 22 December 2012 (UTC)
- Support the removal of "cultural" and the addition of something like "presumed", "conjectured", "potential", "expected" — "Expected impact of extraterrestrial contact" WikiDao ☯ 22:36, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
- Wow. After reading that I feel as if I'm living in a parallel universe. Why pray tell, would you remove "cultural" and replace it with presumed, conjectured, potential or expected? Viriditas (talk) 00:45, 28 December 2012 (UTC)
- In any case, the "conjectured" or "potential" part is supposed to be implied in the subject to any sane person, and should be clear even to the Ancient Aliens fan after reading the hatnote. Wer900 • talk 01:57, 28 December 2012 (UTC)
- I'm responding to RfCbot. It is unnecessary to specify a "cultural" impact as that is both assumed and yet does not quite cover the entirety of the conjectured impact. Removing it from the title resolves part of the problem as described in the RfC. Using "Potential" or "Expected" instead resolves the other part of the problem described there by explicitly not assuming that such contact is already "known" to have occurred. Just using "Impact of extraterrestrial contact" implies a certainty that does not exist. Another suggestion: "Speculative impact of extraterrestrial contact". Something like that ought to do it, in my opinion. WikiDao ☯ 03:02, 29 December 2012 (UTC)
- I'm leaning to agree to this title, as the overwhelming majority of editors seem to not see an implied speculation. Wer900 • talk 18:58, 29 December 2012 (UTC)
- Unfortunately, "speculative impact" has a typical usage in the English language that means something completely and totally different than the usage proposed above, which means it is quite possibly the worst proposal on this page. Whenever possible, article titles should reflect common usage and feature unambiguous usage. In common parlance, "speculative impact" refers to the financial term speculation not to speculative reason. I would like to ask everybody to think a bit harder about their proposals before making them. Viriditas (talk) 11:29, 30 December 2012 (UTC)
- This really is not such a difficult issue to resolve. Use one of the many excellent suggestions above or just "Impact of extraterrestrial contact" and see if that will help get the article FA status. Good luck :) WikiDao ☯ 21:07, 30 December 2012 (UTC)
- Potential [cultural] impact of extraterrestrial contact seems okay, then, based on the current consensus here for a qualifier of potentiality rather than certainty. The debate now is as to whether "cultural" is important - I side with Viriditas on the issue that the use of the word is justified given how we are ultimately relating it to the realm of terrestrial science, technology, religion, arts, politics, and ecology. And thanks for the support WikiDao. Wer900 • talk 02:41, 31 December 2012 (UTC)
- Comment. While I am here, I would also like to siggest you to follow Wikipedia:Summary style and spawn a sub-article, Scenarios of extraterrestrial contact. Staszek Lem (talk) 21:49, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
- Not needed. The subject is currently treated well in one article. Viriditas (talk)
- Obviously you didn't read wikipedia:summary style and don't understand its purpose. "Treated well" has nothing to do with it. Staszek Lem (talk) 23:47, 20 December 2012 (UTC)
- A split would result in two stubby and poorly written articles that do not provide all salient features on their subject. This is by no means the longest GA out there. Wer900 • talk 00:24, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- Stubby/Poorly? YOu must be kidding. It is an infinite topic. Anyway, if you like it, you may keep in all in one. The point of my suggestion is that if a qustion arises how to call an article or what's it subject, then it is quite probably that there may be several articles and all will be happy. Staszek Lem (talk) 23:13, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- That's a good point. For reference, this article is a valid subtopic of Post-detection policy#Cultural and political considerations. Viriditas (talk) 23:27, 21 December 2012 (UTC)
- @Staszek Lem, it is indeed an extremely detailed article that can be refined. However, we have pretty much reached saturation as far as reliable and relevant sources are concerned, and only one source has been added recently (which was new literature). New work on this subject is not coming out at a very rapid pace, so I doubt that any new articles that we could spawn could grow barring a new seminal work of literature in this subject. If such works do come out to the extent that daughter articles can be lengthened to cover a topic in depth, then I am all for splitting. Wer900 • talk 00:07, 22 December 2012 (UTC)
- Suggestion of Cultural impact of future extraterrestrial contact in order to account for the Ancient Aliens crowd. It lines up with the phrase "cultural impact of extraterrestrial contact" used in the literature, while making clear that extraterrestrial contact has not yet happened, and that the article does not assume that that is indeed the case. Wer900 • talk 19:31, 24 December 2012 (UTC)
- Support suggestion - Seems to cover all the bases with the addition of one word. Well done. Jusdafax 04:27, 26 December 2012 (UTC)