User:Beeblebrox/Adding sources as a tactical maneuver

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Often during deletion discussions a user will decide to try and "rescue" an article from deletion. If you can manage to do this by locating reliable, independent sources that discuss the subject at length, then you have done something good and saved verifiable content from being deleted. Sometimes, however this is not possible. A user may be tempted at this point to simply add anything they can find, no matter how unreliable or inconsequential it may be, solely in the interest of "winning" the debate. That is a bad thing.

Examples[edit]

"The minor character"[edit]

Let's say there is an article on a cartoon character. They appeared as a minor character in two episodes of the series, which is now off the air. When nominated, the article had no references at all, but did have a link to the program's official website. You use Google and find that the character was mentioned by name in an animation magazine. The source verifies the basic facts, that they were a minor character in two episodes, but does not offer much beyond that. Should you rush back to the AfD to loudly proclaim the value of this reliable source, or should you admit there is nothing much to say and support redirecting the article to the series main article or a list of characters from the series?

"The local hero"[edit]

Someone in your town has done something that caught the attention of the local population. While covered extensively in the local paper, there is only a two-sentence blurb in the larger regional paper based in the nearest large city. Ask yourself, would this article be of interest to a general audience from around the globe? Is it something of real and lasting significance, or just a nine day wonder from your neighborhood? If that's all it is, it probably does not belong in an encyclopedia.

The point[edit]

AfD is not a contest or a battle for supremacy. Some topics don't merit their own articles, and some are not appropriate for an encyclopedia at all. If you can't accept that then Wikipedia is not for you. Posting only verifiable content based on pre-existing sources is the first of the five pillars of Wikipedia. If your only goal is to achieve victory in a deletion debate, you are doing something wrong. If instead, your goal is to improve articles by not only finding sources, but actually creating new content based on those sources, you are doing something very right. So before you add that source, honestly ask yourself why you are adding it and what will be accomplished.

See also[edit]