Talk:United Nations statistical divisions for the Americas

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Other definitons[edit]

We apparently have an edit war concerning whether or not to include information in this article about whether or not to include notes about what other geoschemes or sources might say. It doesn't belong in this article. First of all, it is borderline POV: we're not interested in what someone else thinks that the geoscheme should be; we're only interested in how it actually is. It's also inherently weasely: “other sources say…”, “in other schemes…”. What other sources? What other schemes? We could probably list all of the differences in geoschemes ad infinitum to the point of absurdity: Is Greenland really part of Europe? Does Canada belong with Latin America because they speak French there? Do Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands really belong with the rest of the Caribbean? etc.

If other schemes are notable, they will have their own article. That being, even if we do include such information about other schemes, it needs to be sourced (which it's currently not), but, even if it was sourced, it doesn't change the fact that the UN geoscheme for the Americas is what it is and it's irrelevant (for this article) for what it's not. — D. Wo. 00:35, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

Looking at WP:UNDUE, the criteria specifies that "If you are able to prove something that few or none currently believe, Wikipedia is not the place to première such a proof. Once a proof has been presented and discussed elsewhere, however, it may be referenced." Including such would require unbiased sources specifying that Mexico is part of Northern America (and not North America; it sounds picky, but the geoscheme makes a distiction.), and Panama is not part of Central America. However, even given unbiased sources specifying exactly such might not be enough to warrant inclusion. It certainly would warrant attention on a general article about geoschemes or the Americas but not on the article about the UN geoscheme.

This is not a debatable point: cite it or don't include it. — D. Wo. 17:16, 15 February 2010 (UTC)

Sure, it is easy to cite that. I don't know why you say "Mexico part of Northern America". What I'm including here is a footnote about Mexico commonly being included in the region of North America, not in Central America as this geoscheme does. It is a clarification footnote. I don't see any problem with that, but OK I will cite it. I find it wierd that you want me to cite when other articles include Mexico in NA. AlexCovarrubias ( Talk? ) 11:44, 18 February 2010 (UTC)
North America is not the same as Northern America. There are even separate Wikipedia articles for both. So, a reference listing Mexico as part of North America would not be sufficient at all to support that a footnote should be added saying that other sources list it as part of Northern America. — D. Wo. 12:56, 18 February 2010 (UTC)
I think that you're misunderstanting the changes. Please see this [1]. We're only adding a footnote that clarify the fact that Mexico is commonly excluded/not accounted in Central America. AlexCovarrubias ( Talk? ) 20:19, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Mexico is not part of Central America[edit]

Here we go all over again just because one single individual feel itchy about Mexico being part of North America and not Central America. Mexico is not part of Central America. And the most important thing is that the "UN Geoscheme" was created for purerly statistical convinience, as stated in the UN site. I remember that one individual didn't like that part being clearly indicated, but I will reintroduce it because it was part of the official website. Here I paste a portion of another discussion:


1) All of the following sources indicate clearly that Mexico is not part of Central America, because they make the distinction "Mexico and Central America":

2) This is a list of sources used in a PREVIOUS debate about Mexico not being part of Central America:

  • American Heritage Dictoriaries

North America
The northern continent of the Western Hemisphere, extending northward from the Colombia-Panama border and including Central America, Mexico, the islands of the Caribbean Sea, the United States, Canada, the Arctic Archipelago, and Greenland.

Central America
A region of southern North America extending from the southern border of Mexico to the northern border of Colombia. It separates the Caribbean Sea from the Pacific Ocean and is linked to South America by the Isthmus of Panama.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition Copyright © 2004, 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved

  • MSN Encarta Encyclopedia

North America (subregion)
Third largest of the seven continents, including Canada (the 2nd largest country in area in the world), the United States (3rd largest), and Mexico (14th largest). The continent also includes Greenland, the largest island, as well as the small French overseas department of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon and the British dependency of Bermuda (both made up of small islands in the Atlantic Ocean). Together with Central America, the West Indies, and South America, North America makes up the Western Hemisphere of Earth.

Central America
Central America, region of the western hemisphere, made up of a long, tapering isthmus that forms a bridge between North and South America. Central America, which is defined by geographers as part of North America, has an area of about 521,500 sq km (about 201,300 sq mi) and includes the countries of Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. The region has a population of approximately 36.4 million (2000 estimate).

"North America," Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2006 © 1997-2006 Microsoft Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

  • Crystal Reference Encyclopedia

North America (subregion)
Third largest continent, extending 9600 km/6000 mi from 70°30N to 15°N; Area c.24 million km²/9¼ million sq mi; separated from Asia by the Bering Strait; bounded by the Beaufort Sea (NW), Arctic Ocean (N), Baffin Bay and Davis Strait (NE), Atlantic Ocean (E), and Pacific Ocean (W); includes Canada, USA, and Mexico; numerous islands, including Baffin I, Newfoundland, and the West Indies; ranges include the Rocky Mts, Alaska Range (including Mt McKinley, highest point), and Appalachian Mts; major lake system, the Great Lakes; major rivers include the Mississippi, Missouri, Rio Grande, and St Lawrence.

Crystal Reference Encyclopedia, © Crystal Reference Systems Limited 2006

  • Columbia University Press

North America
Third largest continent (1990 est. pop. 365,000,000), c.9,400,000 sq mi (24,346,000 sq km), the northern of the two continents of the Western Hemisphere. North America includes all of the mainland and related offshore islands lying N of the Isthmus of Panama (which connects it with South America). The term “Anglo-America” is frequently used in reference to Canada and the United States combined, while the term “Middle America” is used to describe the region including Mexico, the republics of Central America, and the Caribbean.

Central America
Central America, narrow, southernmost region (c.202,200 sq mi/523,698 sq km) of North America, linked to South America at Colombia. It separates the Caribbean from the Pacific. Generally, it is considered to consist of the seven republics (1990 est. pop. 29,000,000) of Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition Copyright © 2003, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

  • Houghton Mifflin Company

North America
Third-largest continent (after Asia and Africa), comprising Canada, the United States, Mexico, and Central America.

Central America
Region in the southernmost portion of North America, linked to South America by the Isthmus of Panama; includes Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Edited by E.D. Hirsch, Jr., Joseph F. Kett, and James Trefil. Copyright © 2002 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.

  • Encyclopaedia Britannica

North America
The third largest of the continents, North America extends from Alaska, the Queen Elizabeth Islands, and Greenland to Panama's eastern border with Colombia in South America. Canada, the United States, Mexico, the Central American republics, the Bahama Islands and the Greater and Lesser Antilles are all parts of North America—more than 9,300,000 square miles (24,100,000 square kilometers)

Central America
Southern portion of North America (pop., 2005 est.: 39,806,000). It extends from the southern border of Mexico to the northwestern border of Colombia and from the Pacific Ocean to the Caribbean Sea. It includes Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama. Some geographers also include five states of Mexico: Quintana Roo, Yucatán, Campeche, Tabasco, and Chiapas.

Britannica Concise Encyclopedia. Copyright © 1994-2006 Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. All rights reserved.

  • WordNet (Princeton University)

Central America
The isthmus joining North America and South America; extends from the southern border of Mexico to the northern border of Colombia

WordNet 2.1 Copyright © 2001 by Princeton University. All rights reserved. More from WordNet

3) This is a list of sources that indicate the USAGE of North America (I include this because the "anonymous" editor will use this "argument" to argue that North America means "US+Canada" only):

[2], [3], [4], [5], [6], [7], [8], [9], [10], [11], [12], [13], and the many publications of OECD.

So given the above, Mexico is not part of Central America and indicating that with a subtext should be good to avoid confussion for the average reader or to avoid promoting a "Mex-is-Central American" POV. AlexCovarrubias ( Talk? ) 14:50, 11 September 2010 (UTC)

As per basic Wikipedia rules, if you put something in an article, it must be backed up with a source. Just saying "it's true and easily backed up with sources" then listing the sources on the talk page does not count. Besides, the note is not needed. This is about the UN geoscheme. They say Mexico is in Central America, so it is. It doesn't matter what other people say, there is nothing confusing about it. I have always been taught that Mexico is part of Central America, which together with the USA, Canada and the Carribean comprises North America. The definitions of the continents and regions of the world are all just opinion anyway and this page is about the UN's opinion, which many would argue is the most important. McLerristarr / Mclay1 16:00, 11 September 2010 (UTC)