User talk:Mandruss

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Information icon Hello and a belated welcome to Wikipedia. Thank you for your contributions. The following links will help your editing on Wikipedia:

Please bear these points in mind while editing Wikipedia

If you have any questions, see the help pages, add a question to the village pump or ask me. Kierzek (talk) 23:47, 31 March 2014 (UTC)

Nice job![edit]

Norman, Oklahoma main street, 1889 Nice job!
You've done some nice work on the articles you've contributed to so far! CaroleHenson (talk) 02:33, 10 May 2014 (UTC)

Overwriting questions at the Teahouse[edit]

I have reverted your post to the Teahouse, because it over-wrote numerous questions. If you want your question answered you will have to re-post it. - Arjayay (talk) 08:59, 8 July 2014 (UTC) @Arjayay:

Thanks for rescuing me. So I tried again, being more careful, and it did pretty much the same thing. I'd post a Teahouse question about that, but, well ... Mandruss (talk) 09:59, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

Mmmm not sure what is happening - How are you trying to edit the page? Are you clicking the big blue "Ask a question" button? or are you clicking the edit tab? - Arjayay (talk) 10:02, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
@Arjayay: The second time, I was very careful to click the big blue "Ask a question" button. Mandruss (talk) 10:04, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
Both User:Yunshui and I have carried out test edits - they seem to be working without any over-writing - but the new post appears at the bottom, not the top of the page. Can I suggest you try again? - Arjayay (talk) 10:57, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
@Arjayay: Bingo and Eureka. Thanks. Mandruss (talk) 11:03, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

Become a talk page stalker![edit]

Hello Mandruss! I don't believe I've had the pleasure of talking with you directly before, but I have seen you at several discussions, which is a very good way of getting the hang of how things work here at the Wikipedia. I read your discussion with Philg88 at his talk page on how to "get to know stuff". One way is to become a Wikipedia:Talk page stalker like me. It is a perfectly acceptable social behavior in an open community like this. Once you find an editor that you notice having things to say and advice to give, you add that user to your watchlist and when something new pops up you just read it. I'm also fairly new here and I've really learned a lot this way. There is even a userbox that you can hang on your user page if you want to "warn" others that you may be listening in: {{WP:TPS/userbox}} Face-smile.svg Best, - W.carter (talk) 10:32, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

Hi W.carter, pleased to make your acquaintance. Thanks for the advice, and I'll start trying to work some TPS into my Wikidays. If I may ask, who are some of the more interesting people you stalk (aside from Philg88 of course)? Mandruss (talk) 10:43, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
Hello again Mandruss. As a general rule any senior editor leaving good and intelligible advice at the Teahouse is worth stalking. (I cant't believe I'm writing a sentence like that! IRL that would be awful.^^) Here are some that I find useful to follow (pardon me if I don't write their names in brackets, shhh... stalker business...): User:Rhododendrites, User:Demiurge1000, User:Anne Delong, User:Crisco 1492, User:Yunshui, User:Technical 13. Good hunting! - W.carter (talk) 11:29, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

Teahouse talkback: you've got messages![edit]

WP teahouse logo 3.png
Hello, Mandruss. Your question has been answered at the Teahouse Q&A board. Feel free to reply there!
Please note that all old questions are archived. Message added by John from Idegon (talk) 16:36, 11 July 2014 (UTC). You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{teahouse talkback}} template.

Isla Vista[edit]

Hello Mandruss,

On the talk page discussion about removing the majors in Isla Vista. You asked me what I meant by 'i would have preferred a bold.' I meant that I would have preffered a bold edit i.e. removing them and then discussing them.

Thought I'd reply here, as the discussion on that page proceeded much further. PS. like talked about here: Wikipedia:Be_bold


- A Canadian Toker (talk) 19:21, 17 July 2014 (UTC)

Oh ok, thanks for the explanation. Yeah, I generally agree, and that's what WP:BOLD says. In cases where (1) the edit stands a good chance of being contested, and (2) the edit is relatively large and/or complex (e.g., also involving changes to the reflist, as in this case), then I go with the talk-first approach. The reason is that edits can become un-undoable, and in that case such an edit would be somewhat time-consuming to revert. Out of consideration for my fellow man, I talk first. I like it when people show me the same consideration, so I appreciate that WWGB did that. Mandruss (talk) 19:29, 17 July 2014 (UTC)
@ACanadianToker: Note to self: Ping when appropriate, also out of consideration for your fellow man. Mandruss (talk) 23:57, 17 July 2014 (UTC)

You're welcome[edit]

I can't comment per my topic ban, sorry. See the top of my Talk page. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 19:28, 21 July 2014 (UTC)

Gotcha, thanks. Mandruss (talk) 19:30, 21 July 2014 (UTC)

A kitten for you![edit]

Kitten (06) by Ron.jpg

HI! <3

JackGann (talk) 07:17, 26 July 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for your input and discussion[edit]

Kitten (06) by Ron.jpg

Great feedback. thanks again for your time.

JackGann (talk) 04:55, 28 July 2014 (UTC)

Thank you[edit]

Not sure if we've interacted before - but I do feel that, in some ways at least, we both appreciate the difficulties associated with civility policy. All the best, DuncanHill (talk) 04:30, 6 August 2014 (UTC)

No, we haven't, I never forget a signature. Yeah, DuncanHill, I think getting along is probably beyond the capacity of most groups of ordinary people like us, especially in an online community. In the real world we can, to a large extent at least, avoid people who aren't like us; not so here. What we need are some good psychologists and philosophers. It's a tough nut to crack, for sure. Thanks for the comment!   Mandruss |talk  05:01, 6 August 2014 (UTC)

about your comment on jimbo's page about "f* off and die"[edit]

About this. I am guessing you looked at the ANI post I linked to, and described as " typically messy and ugly example from the archives". There are many, many things going on there. Probably the most important one for ongoing discussion about taking "bright line" action on civility, is the reactions of the various editors. If you take some time and actually and carefully read the initial post, and then stop and really take some time and go read the back and forth that led to the events described in the original posting.... you will be troubled. Imagine yourself actually actively involved in that conversation in the midst of your own real life, and ask yourself what you would have done. Now go back to the ANI and start reading comments. It becomes very clear that very few commenters took the time to delve into what happened, think about it, and give a considered response. You have some considered responses, but you have tons of knee-jerk responses where it is clear that people grabbed onto some piece of what happened - something important to them - and reacted to that, and, importantly, called for action based on what that grabbed and how they judged it. Quite often people even forget about the initial posting all together and start reacting to each other (old feuds/alliances played out, new feuds/alliances being formed ... all kinds of meta-things going on). Many things could have been handled differently and better - both in the initial dispute and in the community's discussion. But WP unfolds in real time and anybody, wise or foolish, diligent or knee-jerky, is free to chime in. It is the nature of this place. Setting up high-level authorities and bright-lines - taking some kind of swift, seemingly-satisfying actions - is just going to crumble in the face of the real world messiness of this amazing, profoundly democratic space... that so well reflects the messiness of being human and the ways different people live and think and feel and interact with each other. anyway, just wanted to respond to you. I do agree that we need to work on civility. For sure. Jytdog (talk) 13:27, 6 August 2014 (UTC)

btw, i am still not sure what the right answer was, for that ANI. It would have made sense to me, for all the parties involved to have received at least a day-long block to remind them not to let things get that out of hand and that we have dispute resolution processes to help with disagreements.Jytdog (talk) 13:39, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
Jytdog Thanks for the considered response. I think you inadvertently supported my position. That debacle of an ANI never would have gotten started (with respect to ATG's behavior, that is) if there had been a bright-line policy. When ATG felt the "fuck off and die" coming on, he would have asked himself, is that worth the involuntary break that I know I'll get? If he decided that it was, the break would have been imposed without a discussion, and ATG would have taken it like a man. IIRC, Meowy was indeffed as a result of that ANI, and that would have happened even if ATG hadn't told him to fuck off and die. Therefore ATG's outburst accomplished nothing except to help perpetuate and reinforce the acrimonious climate that is driving so many people off and giving WP a bad rep. The current situation is like a room full of people all screaming QUIET!!! at the top of their lungs—just as illogical, and every bit as futile.   Mandruss |talk  20:17, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
Did you actually go read the stuff that led up the outburst? Jytdog (talk) 21:58, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
Jytdog No, I didn't see how that could make any difference, and I'm a really slow reader. But I will do so now.   Mandruss |talk  22:10, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
Jytdog I didn't get very far before the ADD kicked in. I read the following two sections:
What I see there are heated discussions resulting from political diversity, which is what article talk is for. I also see a lot of Meowy being told, in complete disregard for WP principles, and often double- or triple-teamed, that he's a worthless piece of shit scumbag for holding his views. I see no material difference between that and some middle school girl asking another on Facebook, "Why don't you just kill yourself?". At least that girl has youth for an excuse—not a very good excuse, but more than what ATG and company had.
It seems to me that there have to be some absolute standards of behavior, lines that people just don't cross, no matter what, period, end of story. Clearly, the people in those discussions didn't feel constrained by Wikipedia behavior guidelines, so I assume that, in the right circumstances, they can rationalize saying pretty much anything short of exposing themselves to criminal charges. That's unacceptable in my book.
I was already aware of Meowy's bizarre statement that he was essentially an anti-WP terrorist, bizarre because it was Wikisuicidal. I haven't seen anything yet that changes what I've said, so maybe you could help me out and point me in the right directions.   Mandruss |talk  23:09, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
Congrats on getting ~some~ far. To catch it all, you have to follow the edits made to the article itself, and in parallel follow the discussions on the Talk page of the article as well as the discussions that are referenced on various users' Talk pages, to see how this all actually unfolded in the lived-time among the editors involved. And on something "hot" in the news like this, you have to be aware of what was unfolding the real world in August 2012 when all this broke out, and see what else was going on even prior to this in the article editing, with IP address editors coming through and making all kinds of changes (it was in the news) It is exhausting to actually try to understand the real context. Things can get really hot on articles like this one. There are some real heroes on Wikipedia (!) that hang out at difficult articles and keep them reasonable in the face of pretty relentless onslaughts by vandals and POV editors. That is really hard work. Sometimes those people ... go wrong, especially when things get hot. I am not saying this to excuse anyone's behavior. But we have a responsibility to one another to to make informed judgements about one another. Until I have really walk in another editor's shoes, I hesitate to make "bright line" judgements about them. Like I said, from what I read, it seems to me that they should have asked for help at DR or another board, and I don't see that they did (yet). I have not investigated that far yet, to see if they tried to get other editors to help them at WP:NPOVN or WP:ANI or some other board..... judging these things is hard and who wants to slog through so much ugly stuff?? Not you even! That is kind of my point....Jytdog (talk) 02:35, 7 August 2014 (UTC)
Jytdog Points taken, and thanks for taking the time to educate me when there was nothing in it for you. It's true that I've never been tested by such a situation, and when I am I'll probably just sit back and let someone else deal with it. I'm too idealistic, I know, which makes me a bad fit for Wikipedia (and for the rest of the world, for that matter). No encyclopedia or social experiment is worth a ton of (unpaid) added stress in my life. That said, I'm not quitting just yet.   Mandruss |talk  03:43, 7 August 2014 (UTC)
Just my perspective. Lots of folks, have lots of others. Thank you for taking the time to talk with me! Jytdog (talk) 03:45, 7 August 2014 (UTC)

  Mandruss |talk 

A barnstar for you![edit]

Brilliant Idea Barnstar Hires.png The Brilliant Idea Barnstar
Thank you for your addition to Wikipedia:Smurrayinchester's signature tutorial. It will save us all a lot of writing the next time someone asks about this at the Teahouse. w.carter-Talk 13:56, 17 August 2014 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Barnstar of Diligence Hires.png The Barnstar of Diligence
For you diligent work in fixing all the cite templates in Shooting of Michael Brown - Cwobeel (talk) 22:07, 18 August 2014 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Citation Barnstar Hires.png The Citation Barnstar
Thank you for your time and effort converting a massive number of citations to list-defined references at Shooting of Michael Brown. Your work improving the encyclopedia is much appreciated! - MrX 16:38, 20 August 2014 (UTC)

Shooting of Michael Brown[edit]

You indicated that you will be on a break for a few days. Therefore, the following discussion will likely be removed from the relevant Talk Page and archived before you see it. But, I wanted you to see my reply to you. Thanks. Joseph A. Spadaro (talk) 23:33, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

Eric Holder[edit]

Eric Holder visited the city. He met with the family of Brown. This is important enough to add into the article, no? Or is it already there, and I missed it? Thanks. Joseph A. Spadaro (talk) 03:38, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

You're aware that you can use your browser's Find to locate occurrences of "Holder"? Just trying to help. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 12:54, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
No, I am unaware of that. I have no idea how to do that. How do I do so, with Mozilla Firefox? Thanks. Also, is Holder in here or not yet? I can't find it. Joseph A. Spadaro (talk) 16:41, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
(Control)(F).- MrX 16:51, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
I am on the article page (using Mozilla Firefox). I hit "Control F". It does absolutely nothing? What exactly am I supposed to be doing? Also: is Holder in here or not yet? I can't find it. Thanks. Joseph A. Spadaro (talk) 17:22, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
After you press Ctrl-F, look at the bottom of the screen. You should see a search box, followed by up and down arrows, followed by "Highlight All" and "Match Case". Enter holder in the search box. This will scroll you to the first occurrence of Holder and highlight it. To see the next occurrence, click the down arrow. You can toggle "Highlight All" to highlight all occurrences on the page. You can toggle "Match Case" if you want a search to be case-sensitive (no need for that in this case, since there are no lower-case holder's in the article to get in your way). Let me know if that helps. I'm ignoring your last question since answering it yourself will give you actual real-life experience using Find in Firefox. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 18:18, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
I'm going on a WP:WIKIBREAK for a few days, so I won't see anything you say to me here until I return. I will, however, watch my talk page. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 19:33, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
OK, thanks. I figured it out. But, it had nothing to do with "Control F". It was a different process altogether. Nonetheless, I was able to figure it out. Thanks. Joseph A. Spadaro (talk) 23:31, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

WP:LDRHOW documentation[edit]

First, thank you for LDRing the Shooting of Michael Brown.

I note that your talk comment of 17:18, 18 August 2014 contained:

Every new ref requires (1) a change to the References section, to add the ref, and (2) a change to the body where you want to invoke the ref. In a busy article like this one, where edit conflicts are more common, I do this by editing sections rather than the entire article.

But having to edit two sections for every addition with a citation isn't mentioned in WP:LDRHOW.

You bring up a very good point and I think it should be added to the help documentation, probably in WP:LDRHOW#Usage Notes. I'd do it myself but I'm brand new to LDR's and I feel you could deal with consensus issues (if any) better than I could. This is only a suggestion and doesn't have to be dealt with immediately, certainly not while you're on vacation. --RoyGoldsmith (talk) 18:02, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

Hi RoyGoldsmith, I'm on vacation, but I don't mind communicating on my talk page. I even couldn't resist posting a couple of times on the article talk page. I should know by now, if I'm serious about a break I can't even read article talk pages!
As for LDR, are we talking about the requirement to modify two sections, or to do two separate edits? If the latter, that's not a requirement, it was just something I suggested because of the increased probability of edit conflicts in such a busy article. LDRHOW has the following passage in its Usage notes. Does this help at all?
 A drawback of the approach is that these references can be harder to insert into the source, because
 they are separated from the text. The editor must either open the entire document to see the source
 for both the text and the reference list, or alternatively use a two-step procedure, first entering
 the identifier <ref name=name /> in the main text and then opening the reference listing section
 to enter the source or footnote as <ref name=name>content</ref>. 
‑‑Mandruss (talk) 18:40, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
I must have missed that. Sorry to trouble you. Have a nice vacation. --RoyGoldsmith (talk) 18:55, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

Began to flee[edit]

Hi. I'm curious why you would say "began to flee" instead of saying "fled" It's a minor point, but why use three words instead of one? Individually it's not a big deal, but collectively the words add up. More an academic question than one I would contest the article. --Kevin Murray (talk) 11:58, 27 August 2014 (UTC)

It's a fair question. I felt "began to flee" better describes the fact that they didn't get very far. To me, "fled" conjures images of them making it a hundred yards or more. And we've all seen very long foot pursuits on COPS and in the movies—they're a deeply ingrained part of pop culture—so it wouldn't take much to conjure one in the reader's imagination. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 12:07, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Kevin Murray ping in case you're not watching. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 12:15, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Good point. My wife and I laugh at the Hollywood vehicle to pedestrian chases where the runner seems to perpetually outrun the vehicle. --Kevin Murray (talk) 12:31, 27 August 2014 (UTC)

Also, I have a personal pet peeve about over using "and" Though in some cases it can eliminate several words. I frequently try to eliminate all "ands" then judicially put them back in where needed. --Kevin Murray (talk) 12:31, 27 August 2014 (UTC)

Kevin Murray ping in case you're not watching. I took a shot at removing one "and", and (oops!) didn't like the result. Can you suggest exact wording here? We can use this as the sandbox. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 12:38, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Yes. --Kevin Murray (talk) 12:53, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Witnesses report that Wilson drove up to Brown AND a friend, Dorian Johnson, AND, from inside the vehicle, ordered them to move from the street to the sidewalk. Brown AND Wilson struggled through the open window of the police car. A shot was fired from within the vehicle, AND Brown and Johnson began to flee. Wilson pursued on foot, firing multiple shots at Brown AND fatally wounding him. Witness reports differ as to whether Brown was standing with his hands up or moving toward Wilson when he was shot.--Kevin Murray (talk) 12:53, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Witnesses report that Wilson drove up to Brown AND a friend, Dorian Johnson, THEN from inside the vehicle, ordered them to move from the street to the sidewalk. Brown AND Wilson struggled through the open window of the police car. A shot was fired from within the vehicle, AFTER WHICH Brown and Johnson began to flee. Wilson pursued on foot, firing multiple shots at Brown, fatally wounding him. Witness reports differ as to whether Brown was standing with his hands up or moving toward Wilson when he was shot. --Kevin Murray (talk) 12:53, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Kevin Murray ping in case you're not watching. Are you watching?
We have a language difference, I think. Are you outside the U.S.?

Last night people objected to me saying specifically that Wilson shot Brown inside the car. Was there a third person in the car? Is it unclear that the shot fired from inside the car hit Brown? --Kevin Murray (talk) 12:59, 27 August 2014 (UTC)

I'd have to look into that, I don't recall reading it before. My own personal take would be that it should say that a shot was fired from inside the car, since that's all we know for sure. I don't think we know that Brown was hit then. We don't know the circumstances of the gunshot. The gun could have gone off accidentally while they were struggling for it.
Interesting points. To me as a first reader, it looked a bit like cover-up double-speak. But I see why now.
You should understand that I may not be the best person for a conversation like this, except maybe about the grammar questions. About 90% of my focus has been on two things: 1. copyedit. 2. refs: converting to list-defined refs, filling in and standardizing existing refs. That's kept me too busy to follow the story at a detail level. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 13:11, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
But you are clearly neutral and out for the best interest of the WP project. That and good grammar are key to credibility. This article may be many readers first interaction with WP. --Kevin Murray (talk) 13:24, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
These other guys are just as neutral as I am. Trust me, I've been watching them for weeks and I know POV-pushing when I see it. They're every bit as "out for the best interest of the WP project" as I am. Only one of them has a clear bias that he can't seem to check at the door, and he's not one of the seniors. The rest of us keep him in check, and he seems to prefer talking to editing anyway, so he's at least harmless in that respect.
I think that there is too much desire to be journalistic, along with buying into using journalistic language which is not objective and encyclopedic. --Kevin Murray (talk) 14:41, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
I may seem more benign to you, for lack of a better word, because I mostly stayed out of last night's discussion. I hadn't put weeks of effort into the existing consensus, for working in other areas, so I had less invested.
I guess you didn't see the other two questions that I inserted above. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 13:57, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Yes I am outside the US; I'm in California ;-) --Kevin Murray (talk) 14:41, 27 August 2014 (UTC)
Hence the language difference. I knew it! ;) ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 14:49, 27 August 2014 (UTC)

Sandboxing an idea[edit]

So I took some time off, thought about what was bugging me here, and took your suggestion (and others) to try a sandbox. It's a bit radical, and different from how I would normally structure a lede, but this is a special circumstance.

Among my concerns in the lead have been:

  • lack of precision and ambiguity in the lede
  • A subtle sensationalism and anti establishment bias
  • The use of jingoistic media-typical adjectives and verbs (encyclopedic)
  • Despite my preference for short leading sections, I think that efforts to be brief are leaving me with a feeling of cover-up and euphemism in the lede. And I don't think it is intentional, just the result of trying to be brief and neutral, but vague.
  • There are certain words and frequency of use of words, terms, and concepts which serve to prejudice the article, by the weight they are given by placement and emphasis.
  • I think that forcing the first sentence into a backward, syntax to accommodate a MOS guideline of including the title in the first sentence is silly with this title. It's not a rule, and in my mind it's rarely a preferred practice. I also think that people will figure out that Missouri is in the US, and the Brits will forgive us for making this US-centric ;-)


On August 9, 2014, in Ferguson, Missouri, a suburb of St Louis, an experienced white police officer killed Michael Brown, a black teenager. The circumstances surrounding the death of the unarmed 18 year old, are disputed, controversial, and have received national recognition by the media, politicians, and interest groups.

According to witnesses and official reports, Officer Darren Wilson, 28, who was driving alone, drove up to two black males walking in the street, blocked them with his car, then ordered Michael Brown and Dorian Johnson to move from the street to the sidewalk. It is unclear how this started, but a struggle ensued between Brown and Wilson through the window of the police car. A pistol was fired in the vehicle and Brown and Johnson began to flee. Wilson pursued on foot while firing his pistol several times, after which Brown stopped running. Wilson then shot Brown several more times, killing him. Witness reports differ as to whether Brown was standing with his hands up or moving towards Wilson when he was killed.

Brown, had recently graduated from high school, was enrolled for college in the fall, and had no criminal record. Wilson has been a policeman for six years, has a family, and has no record of disciplinary action.

Concerns have been expressed over whether Brown should have been shot at least six times, whether Brown had surrendered prior to being killed, and whether Brown represented a threat to Officer Wilson when he was killed. The media has also questioned whether local police departments should use military-style weapons when dealing with unrest. The police have been accused of insensitivity in handling the crime scene and street-memorials. In the aftermath, these issues became a catalyst for unrest and increased friction between the majority-black community and the white dominated city government and police force. Protests, riots, and other forms of social unrest continued for more than a week, with escalating violence and the implementation curfews throughout the city.

Kevin Murray Just in case you're not watching. My suggestion for sandboxing was in the context of rewording to eliminate excessive "ands". That's purely a grammar thing, which I feel qualified to discuss. I don't feel qualified to discuss the wording of the lead—at my experience level, I need to be watching and learning in that area, not doing—which is why I've mostly stayed out of that discussion. One needs to know one's limits, while trying to expand them.
Further, you apparently want to sell the above to me first, so I can help you sell it the rest of the group. I can't do that, for the same reason as above.
You're wasting your time with this approach. If you want to continue your efforts with this article, I'd suggest trying to mend some fences in article talk. You've gotten yourself on a lot of bad sides—not just with your initial approach, which you admitted could have been handled better, but by doing things like (1) accusing at least one person of SPA with extremely scant evidence, and (2) referring to the cabal, which could easily have been interpreted as a veiled accusation of some of those present. I'm not sure those fences are mendable at this point, but it's up to you whether you want to try. That's my take. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 16:36, 28 August 2014 (UTC)
Hi, I agree. I shook the tree to get to the root of some issues. I'm not trying to be popular or be directly involved in the process -- just want to get facts out in the light and get people thinking in alternate directions. That's where I'm feeding some ideas to you. But based on what you are saying that's not your bag. No worries. If you see some merit in this approach run with it, share it etc.

It's admirable that you are cautious and concerned about your experience level, but based on my review of background and demeanor, you're among the best and most WP-dedicated editors I've seen at the page.

Good luck to you,

Kevin --Kevin Murray (talk) 16:48, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

BTW, on the SPA issue, an SPA is not a state of mind, it is an action of only working on one or a narrow group of articles see: WP:SPA If you look at the join dates and edit records of several participants, they are undeniably (A) brand new to the project, and (B) only edit in a narrow band of articles. Yes, assume good faith, but also look below the surface. I assumed goof faith but also verified and found clear. You may think I'm a crank, but if I've got you thinking a bit ..... Anyway I won't bother you at your page unless you reachout and invite me back. --Kevin Murray (talk) 16:57, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

Kevin Murray Just in case you're not watching. I don't know why you don't take the hint and tell me whether you're watching. If you are, that would save me a little extra trouble pinging you.
I like the pings, but if it's extra work, I'll try to be more diligent in checking your page.
You're not bothering me. I enjoy conversing with intelligent people. Usually I talk so much that people stop responding to me.
Thanks--Kevin Murray (talk) 18:00, 28 August 2014 (UTC)
If you look at my "top edited pages", or whatever that's called, you'll see that the vast majority of my edits have been at Shooting of Michael Brown and 2014 Isla Vista killings. No percentages are shown, but I'm guessing around 95% between those two. Another, say, 2% was spread across various articles in the same category as those two. So you're saying that the remaining 3%, being spread across maybe a few dozen articles of other types, absolves me of SPA suspicion?
Some people—including me—are just attracted to articles like this, for whatever human reason, and that doesn't mean SPA unless we push POV. I think it's more useful just to attack POV-pushing when you think you see it, with solid reasoning of course, and throw away the SPA term. SPA may describe the person's motivation, but his motivation is beside the point and irrelevant. What matters is what he does. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 17:28, 28 August 2014 (UTC)
You are right, your focus is narrow, meeting the SPA criteria (I looked at it yesterday), and you are a bit of the cabal that follows the tragedies. That's not all bad, because it counterbalances. If you were involved in an AfD or applying for Admin status this might hurt you. That's not to say that you are not a great wikipedian; I think that you've paid your dues and proved your commitment.

I sense that you are about where I was seven years ago, before the economy tanked I was semi-retired and spent a huge amount of time on WP, much of which was spent fighting against policy creep and rampant deletionism (don't know if that is still happening). Unfortunately if you want to be effective in some of these venues you have to be a thick skinned prick and know how to wiki-lawyer and walk fine lines. Most people don't read sandboxes, long explanations, or even short poignant comments buried in the lines of chatter. --Kevin Murray (talk) 18:11, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

Kevin Murray When I've said, "in case you're not watching", I've meant, "in case you haven't added this page to your watchlist so you can monitor your watchlist for changes to it." Surely that's as easy as being pinged?
I suspect I'll always be happy working almost exclusively at the article level, and there's still a ton of room for growth there. I'm not the type for the big-picture issues, and I lack the stomach for the politics. Being somewhere on the autism spectrum, I find fine lines very difficult to see, let alone navigate. There's a reason I never had the slightest interest in being in management. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 18:24, 28 August 2014 (UTC)
If a person works exclusively with art history articles, are they a SPA? If so, then I misunderstood the definition of SPA. I thought it was something negative, and surely you wouldn't fault someone for simply sticking to art history. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 18:39, 28 August 2014 (UTC)
Like anything there are degrees. I wouldn't say that someone who works only in art history is an SPA. I would say that someone who makes 95% of their edits on one article and sub topics is SPA. I would say that a person who only works on art history articles and has no experience in AfDs, dispute resolution, etc. would not be a candidate for Admin. --Kevin Murray (talk) 18:57, 28 August 2014 (UTC)
A combination of: SPA, new editor, working at a highly charged article, being welcomed to WP by a cohort at the charged article, and reverting over a section undergoing much work add up to me questioning good faith.
And could have been just a clumsy newbie mistake, driven by an eagerness to actively participate. I'd be looking for a pattern of behavior, as well as attitude in talk (and willingness to participate in talk in the first place). ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 19:07, 28 August 2014 (UTC)
You are the better man for your understanding an patience. I don't want to hurt the newbie, just make a point, and not just him/her, but to the group. And I'm sure you will be attentive and looking for the pattern.

The article that I cited to answer your question at the Brown talk page (Florida shooting of unarmed teenager), may be a good template for Brown. The first sentence is similar to what I proposed; direct action At A, B shot C. And the mention of "unarmed" comes in the second paragraph where I think it should be. I'm probably going to go away for a while, but it has been a pleasure chatting and learning from you. My direct email is if you ever need anything. Cheers! --Kevin Murray (talk) 22:41, 28 August 2014 (UTC)

Cwobeel and I have agreed to a truce and to remove the unfortunate banter from the MB talk page. In the process one of your comments was removed. I doubt that you care, but I want to give your the courtesy of letting you know that I removed your comment along with the whole section. Hopefully we a can all be more productive. Best regards. --Kevin Murray (talk) 22:00, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

What? You threw away a perfectly good witticism for the sake of some silly harmony? ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 22:06, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

Timeline error[edit]

Regarding this, I made the change 42 minutes before you even said you were leaving. I hope you liked the DVD, and hope you notice the part where I said I do compromises. InedibleHulk (talk) 09:16, August 29, 2014 (UTC)

InedibleHulk That is a patently disingenuous response. The time of my departure changes nothing about the fact that WE WERE FAR FROM CONSENSUS WHEN YOU MADE THE CHANGE, AND YOU KNEW THAT. Please don't play games with me. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 12:01, 29 August 2014 (UTC)
I made a bold edit, discussed it, you came back and reverted it. Typical BRD. Not sure why you're getting upset. But yeah, I'll get off your talk page. InedibleHulk (talk) 12:09, August 29, 2014 (UTC)
InedibleHulk Again, you play games. Please point me to the policy page that says it's ok to boldly make a change WHILE IT'S UNDER DISCUSSION. I haven't asked you stay off my talk page. I am asking you to show some respect for process while you're working on this article. Thank you. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 12:16, 29 August 2014 (UTC)
Wikipedia:Be bold. If I'd reverted you after you reverted me, during the discussion, then I'd be wrong. Anyway, sorry you had to undo an edit. It wasn't intended as any sort of game. InedibleHulk (talk) 12:29, August 29, 2014 (UTC)

list references[edit]

Thanks for fixing my bare refs. Are you using a particular gadget or script to do that, or just doing it by hand? Gaijin42 (talk) 18:39, 29 August 2014 (UTC)

By hand, starting with an empty template copied from Notepad. And you're welcome, I'd much rather do this and give you more time for the hard stuff. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 18:41, 29 August 2014 (UTC)
When I'm in the mood to use full refs, I use the ProveIt gadget (which you can turn on in preferences) but I do not know how well it works well for List ReferencesGaijin42 (talk) 18:45, 29 August 2014 (UTC)
This is working well for me, but thanks for the suggestion! ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 18:46, 29 August 2014 (UTC)

Shooting of Michael Brown[edit]

I will use refs as recommended in future. Thank you for your diligence. I may revisit the page again after others contribute further just to ensure I follow the correct format in future & will also add an edit summary in future edits. Tikihouse (talk) 17:15, 30 August 2014 (UTC)Tikihouse

A barnstar for you![edit]

Brilliant Idea Barnstar Hires.png The Brilliant Idea Barnstar
Great idea to revisit the ref tags again after more contributions. Tikihouse (talk) 17:20, 30 August 2014 (UTC)

I added the birthdate for Darren Wilson for the Michael Brown article in case someone would like to please check it is in the correct format, please. Thank you. Tikihouse (talk) 18:18, 30 August 2014 (UTC)Tikihouse

Thanks, I'll correct it. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 18:24, 30 August 2014 (UTC)

Re: coordinates and roads[edit]

Thank you for all your suggestions. I have the tools to create such maps (it seems to me that Open office will suffice), but the problem has been finding base maps that are in the one that are licence compatible. I have now found a source I can use

To give you an example of where the information comes from see talk:Trench warfare#Even larger scale in the American Civil War and the second quotation box there. On that talk page I plotted a crude line using goggle maps to show the length of the entrenchments. In this case I am interested in the article Lines of Wissembourg, which is an easy one to do because the entrenchments ran along what was then and is now the the international border. But that is not really the point I was making at Template talk:Coord, which is that we need a mechanism for giving at least two coordinate in the top right-hand corner of an article for linear objects which have different start and end coordinates, because for such objects the current arrangement is far less beneficial than giving two. It is as if we insisted in the first line of a biography that only the DOB or DOD was given because to include both would be too complicated for a template to handle.

Putting in a map of the item is OK as far as it goes but even so people may want to feed in the co-ordinates to their own choice of maps/satellite imagry through the very convenient use of the coord template. Taking the Lines of Wissembourg as an example. Yes one could put in the coord template inline next to the two towns mentioned in the text, but that would look clunky. The alternative that the reader has is to click on the Wissembourg article and then the coordinates but again that is clunky. I think it much more useful to present the start and end in the top right-hand corner. -- PBS (talk) 13:11, 1 September 2014 (UTC)

In my experience, coord is good for locating points, but terrible for describing anything in two dimensions. For example, it can't describe a circle that encloses all of the elements of an "event", such as in 2014 Isla Vista killings. In that case, the best we could do was to identify the approximate center of said circle, and then use the precision of the coordinates to imply the very approximate diameter of the circle, using information at WP:OPCOORD (scroll down to the colored tables). Of course that technique is lost on readers who haven't read WP:OPCOORD and understood it, which is virtually all of them. So in practice the coordinates just allow readers to quickly get an interactive map where they can find all of the locations named in the article.
In the above case, a coordinates-pair would probably only confuse the reader, as it could only identify two opposite points of the circle, without any explanation of what was being conveyed.
You could use the same technique to describe the center and very approximate size of a trench system, with the same shortcomings as above.
Coordinate pairs don't seem very useful for anything other than straight lines (and perhaps close-to-straight lines, as in your example). I can understand their resistance to making that enhancement for such a relatively small benefit, especially given the technical reasons not to do so which they mentioned. I understand that the cost/benefit looks very different to you, but you're not looking at the big picture that they are—nor are you the one who would have to do the work.
If it were me, I would resign myself to Wikipedia's limitations for this sort of thing, as I did at 2014 IVK. I would use the title coordinates for the approximate center of the trench system, and set their precision according to WP:OPCOORD. I would make this the midpoint of a straight line drawn between the two endpoints. I make this to be about a mile to the northeast of your line, at, say, 43.35°N 1.59°W (I might hedge that a little to the southwest, to get closer to the actual line; there's no hard rule on this). Then I would do one or both of the following:
  • Create a map and include it as an image. If that's allowed by converting your Google map to an image on Commons, I think that would work great. Failing that, the map in Motor Torpedo Boat PT-109 is the one created by the user I mentioned on your talk page, and your needs don't seem substantially different from that. Its basis is OpenStreetMap, which I see you have already found.
  • In the body, use prose text and inline coords to describe the endpoints, as "The trench system extended from {{coord}}, in Ascain, to {{coord}}, in Saint-Jean-De-Luz." These coords would use a higher precision than those in the title, since they would describe "objects" much smaller than the entire trench system. Unlike putting a coordinates pair up at the top, this would at least give the reader some explanation of what they refer to. Clunky? Maybe. But functional.
Add: My ADD mind prevents me from absorbing too much at one time. Upon reviewing what you wrote, I see you're working on a different trench system, so my specifics won't be very useful. I'm too lazy to rewrite, so hopefully the general ideas will be of some help. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 14:37, 1 September 2014 (UTC)
I appreciate what you are saying (although the programming issue could be addressed by breaking the functionality and the interface into two), and just to emphasise a point AFAICT Google Maps can not be used as they carry copyright, but has a copyleft licence that can be used for the purposes of creating maps of the sort I need. -- PBS (talk) 19:23, 2 September 2014 (UTC)

Commenting our references[edit]

Thanks for the tip about commenting out references. I'm still relatively new and appreciate a helpful nudge every now and then

Cheers, :)

- A Canadian Toker (talk) 23:24, 2 September 2014 (UTC)

You're welcome, and me too, on both counts. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 23:32, 2 September 2014 (UTC)


Not a big deal, don't disagree with your change, but the alternative to physical altercation is usually verbal. Gaijin42 (talk) 16:27, 4 September 2014 (UTC)

See my subsequent edit. Apparently there's no such thing as a physical altercation, per all dictionaries I could find online. ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 16:29, 4 September 2014 (UTC)

CrowderLake University Park[edit]

In response to your query on the subject talk page, I think it would be more appropriate to apply the coordinates of the lake. Adding coordinates for the park would be useful if the two sets are significantly different. Thanks for catching this.Bruin2 (talk) 14:58, 9 September 2014 (UTC)

Thanks, Bruin2. Could you add something to the section on the article talk page, for the record? ‑‑Mandruss (talk) 20:28, 9 September 2014 (UTC)