User talk:WhatamIdoing

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If you expected a reply on another page and didn't get it, then please feel free to remind me. My watchlist is over 2,000 pages at the moment, and I'm not keeping up with every page. You can also use the magic summoning tool if you remember to link my userpage in the same edit in which you sign the message.

Please add notes to the end of this page. I'll probably reply here unless you suggest another page for a reply. Thanks, WhatamIdoing (talk)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Editors Barnstar Hires.png The Editor's Barnstar
Thank you! Have a great day! Levinas 25 (talk) 16:58, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

"Technically, any change, no matter how small to the text of an article, is a revert."[edit]

The WT:EW thread has been archived. The issue appears to have had a lasting impact; recently there was a block regarding a 1RR article where the user made a good-faith rewording in an attempt to find consensus. It is lamentable that the AN thread was closed with "The technical definition of a revert has been clarified". That shouldn't have happened.

I still believe the foremost problem is an admin problem, not a policy problem, even if the policy could use refinement. I have encountered many behavioral issues from Bbb23, even recently where WP:ADMINACCT was flouted in plain sight. "Technically, any change..." is such an unbelievably implausible interpretation, and in the context of the behavioral problems it seems more likely to be a post hoc rationalization offered under pressure in an AN thread. In any case, it should not set a precedent.

Something is wrong here, but I'm not sure how it should be addressed. vzaak 15:43, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

Hi vzaak,
In our ample free time™, we can work on a {{supplement}} to provide a wide variety of examples. That would give us an opportunity to explain at length and answer some of the questions and "but what ifs" that were raised in those discussions. I don't think that any existing essay addresses this at all, so step one is a new name, I guess. WP:Identifying reversions? WP:Definition of revert? WP:Differentiating between reverting and collaborative editing? What do you think? WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:00, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
A supplement is a good idea for a "second aid" treatment (I would pick WP:Identifying reversions because it gets away from the "mechanical" connotation of WP:Definition of revert, and the last one is too narrow), however I believe a "first aid" treatment is still necessary because the negative consequences seem to remain. Someone needs to climb the Reichstag and announce that "any change = revert" is simply not true. It should not be the basis of any admin action. Like don't delete the main page, that should be obvious, yet this particular form of insanity seems contagious. vzaak 18:16, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
Yes, vzaak, I agree that we need "first aid", and we will get there. But I think it will be easy to clarify the policy if we have "second aid" in place to deal with objections and corner cases. It might be better to expand Wikipedia:Reverting, which I'd forgotten about. Maybe Brian would be interested in helping, too. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:13, 9 March 2014 (UTC)
The admin at issue here may have been too rigid either because he has a rigid mentality or because a rigid interpretation helped process "cases" faster. Keep in mind here that black and white thinking keeps the world simpler and may help one move quickly on to the next decision. A call for exercising due diligence and doing more investigating might have been all that was missing. But it probably is indeed best to start by ensuring that the policy wording is not playing enabler because in the future there will probably eventually just be someone else who interprets the policy wording in the same aggravating way if the wording allows that.--Brian Dell (talk) 21:04, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

Have a peek at this -- similar behavioral problems to those I encountered, including the admin refusing to provide the violating diffs and treating others as if they understand what is going on in the admin's mind. "Those changes constitute a revert." This has to stop, and by more direct means than those hitherto employed. Combined with my experience (and the sublinks therein) and other cases I've seen, I believe there is a strong arbcom case against this admin. vzaak 23:28, 9 March 2014 (UTC)

Let's look at that dispute:

Well, there you have it: G made four, mostly unrelated, non-consecutive changes to that section on the same day, and S reverted two of the changes (one of them twice), so that's "edit warring" by G according to some rigid and/or sloppy people. But I doubt that this will be even remotely interesting to ArbCom. You'd be better off with an RFC/U for admins. And to qualify for RFC/U, we need two editors to complain at him about the same overly aggressive block. So far, only the blocked editor appears to be complaining, and that's "one", not "two".

And in the long run, what needs to be dealt with is the policy, but rushing in isn't going to help. We need to build the ground work for clarification, so that the proposal will be sound and so that the discussion won't get derailed by people who focus on silly cases. WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:23, 10 March 2014 (UTC)

There are really three separate matters,
  1. Bbb23's interpretation of "revert" is unique and inappropriate. To my knowledge, no person on Earth believes what Bbb23 believes, admin or otherwise.
  2. Bbb23's behavior surrounding the issue is disruptive.
  3. Long-term goal of trying to reword the policy to prevent such an outlandish interpretation.
The third point may take up to a year, who knows. In the meantime, the disruption needs to be addressed. At least two of us have been, as Stephen Colbert might say, "Caught in the headlights of Bbb23's justice." Can't this be brought to RFC/ADMIN? I suspect others may submit concerns as well, for instance contemporaneous with my recent interaction was this thread which shows similar behavioral problems. vzaak 18:14, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
On #1, I'm not sure that even he believes what he once said. We don't want to leave people no room to change their minds about off-the-cuff remarks.
Yes, the one admin's problems can go to an RFC/U. (RFC/ADMIN and RFC/U are the same page.) But to do that, you need two people who agree to certify that they have attempted to resolve the same dispute, and you need to assume that the admin patrolling new RFC/U pages will be rigid in his interpretation of every single word of the requirements, and especially rigid in defining "the same dispute". WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:35, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
At guidance it says "...if anyone else has had the same issues with the editor in question..." while elsewhere it says "the same dispute". The former fits but the latter fits only under the assumption that two instances of the same underlying problem are the same dispute. I don't know what to make of this. vzaak 22:55, 10 March 2014 (UTC)
I've spent a lot of time looking at RFC and RFC/U pages. You should assume that the strictest possible interpretation will be the one that is used, because I've seen the more generous (and sensible) interpretation accepted exactly once in the last year. However, any, even trivial, "attempt to resolve the dispute" is normally counted. So if you joined some other user's dispute discussion, then you and that user would count as "two", even if your "attempt" involves just one or two short messages on the user's talk page. (Naturally, this assumes that the other user is willing to participate in certifying the RFC/U.) WhatamIdoing (talk) 21:24, 11 March 2014 (UTC)
I have no personal relationships with any persons involved in this matter, but do have an interest in more judicious, accountable control over the way reversion rules are applied (in the Huggle and Twinkle world we live in). Hence, I have an interest in your long term goal. But, I will assist (and encourage sympathetic admins with whom I relate, to assist) only if the first two matters that you list are dropped. This because your doing so would reflect the fact that you appreciate that injustices occur here at WP, regularly, and to get hung up in a personal sense over any one of them is counterproductive. As well, its chapter-and-verse back and forth have led on both sides to caricatures of fellow editors/admins in ways that are unacceptable for practical progress. (No one of us is wholly good or bad, competent or incompetent, guilty or blameless, in any one situation or in general.) If you can step away from the past situation, and work to formulate a plan on the long-term goal, I am in and will recruit others to support. If moving forward seems (as it now does), to be linked to vindicta, personal or otherwise, I am out. There is not enough time in the world to deal with the injustices I and my family experience personally, let alone of those of the many less fortunate (affluent, lettered) than I, and so I simply cannot commit time to the literal myriad of ongoing, non-lifethreatening injustices that characterize this place. Ping me, if a long-term-only plan can be the focus. No messages at my talk, only here. Cheers, Le Prof Leprof 7272 (talk) 18:26, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
Leprof 7272, it's possible that the admin in question will eventually end up at RFC/U no matter what any of us do, because that happens on occasion to admins who have such rigid approaches. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:13, 13 June 2014 (UTC)

Block review idea[edit]

I've started a thread at Wikipedia:Village pump (idea lab)#Block review. Your input there would be appreciated. GabeMc (talk|contribs) 19:42, 12 March 2014 (UTC)

Are you stalking me? (kidding)[edit]

Just wanted to say I appreciate that we're in so much agreement lately. Personally I think some of these discussions are going on far longer than they really "should", but at least everyone's being civil, and I think progress is being made...gradually. DonIago (talk) 16:31, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

Stalking someone as sensible and rational as you (and you must be, because we agreed on two things! Face-wink.svg) would be a happy change of pace. WhatamIdoing (talk) 23:14, 13 March 2014 (UTC)
(eye-roll) Should I be worried about logging on here some day to find that you've nominated me for adminship? :p DonIago (talk) 04:59, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Having managed to dodge the hazing ritual that is RFA myself for this long, I'm not likely to be nominating anyone else for it. It doesn't seem like an act of kindness to someone that you like. WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:31, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps an April Fool's, then? :p DonIago (talk) 12:59, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Would be the perfect day, if you don't mind fielding complaints from grumpy killjoys. A few years ago, I saw a newly minted admin blame his election to everyone having a hangover after New Year's. Perhaps all nominations ought to begin on a major holiday? WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:24, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
I thought editing Wikipedia was all about fielding complaints from grumpy killjoys. :p If nominations on major holidays still face substantive but reduced scrutiny from said GKs, I'm all for it. But would my nomination be "challenged or likely to be challenged"? DonIago (talk) 16:51, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Isn't it a rule that all RFAs are automatically challenged, by one of the "I hereby challenge every sentence in the entire encyclopedia" people? WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:28, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps they could challenge it by removing it? That would be a bit of a win-win for me! DonIago (talk) 18:43, 14 March 2014 (UTC)
Face-smile.svg WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:40, 15 March 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia:You don't own Wikipedia[edit]

Given your apparent (to be nice) contempt for content editors and the community in general in this essay, I wonder how you expect we might take anything else you say to assuage in the light of such fiascos as the VE as genuine. You seen to have laid out your position and stall clear enough. I read it as a massive smack in the face. The feeling on the ground has long been that the WMF believes "Our developers would have such an easier time if it wasnt for the *damn people* who use the product". Thank you for chrystalising this fear. Ceoil (talk) 16:45, 15 March 2014 (UTC)

  • You might want to check the dates on that essay. I started that page a couple of years before the WMF hired me (on a temporary, part-time contract) to help them collect feedback from editors.
  • This is not the WMF's view of editors. This is editors' views of the small minority of editors who, upon being told that a minor UI change was made as a result of an editor-initiated, CENT-listed RFC at the Village Pump (a discussion that resulted in unanimous support from two dozen editors) nonsensically persisted in claiming that the devs changed the website "against consensus", or even that there was never any discussion in the first place, instead of saying something rational like, "I missed that discussion, I disagree with the outcome, and I'd like us to re-open it".
  • Finally, if you want to send it to MFD, then feel free. As far as I can tell from comments and links made since I started it, the net result will be a failed MFD note on the talk page, plus more people knowing about its existence. WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:59, 16 March 2014 (UTC)

Discretionary sanctions 2013 review: Draft v3[edit]

Hi. You have commented on Draft v1 or v2 in the Arbitration Committee's 2013 review of the discretionary sanctions system. I thought you'd like to know Draft v3 has now been posted to the main review page. You are very welcome to comment on it on the review talk page. Regards, AGK [•] 00:16, 16 March 2014 (UTC)

VisualEditor newsletter—March 2014[edit]

Since the last newsletter, the VisualEditor team has mostly worked on changes to the template and image dialogs.

The biggest change in the last few weeks was the redesign of the template dialog. The template dialog now opens in a simplified mode that lists parameters and their descriptions. (The complex multi-item transclusion mode can be reached by clicking on "Show options" from inside the simplified template dialog.) Template parameters now have a bigger, auto-sizing input box for easier editing.  With today's update, searching for template parameters will become case-insensitive, and required template parameters will display an asterisk (*) next to their edit boxes. In addition to making it quicker and easier to see everything when you edit typical templates, this work was necessary to prepare for the forthcoming simplified citation dialog. The main priority in the coming weeks is building this new citation dialog, with the ultimate goal of providing autofill features for ISBNs, URLs, DOIs and other quick-fills. This will add a new button on the toolbar, with the citation templates available picked by each wiki's community. Concept drawings can be seen at mw:VisualEditor/Design/Reference Dialog. Please share your ideas about making referencing quick and easy with the designers.

  • The link tool now tells you when you're linking to a disambiguation or redirect page. Pages that exist, but are not indexed by the search engine, are treated like non-existent pages (bug 54361http://bugzilla.wikimedia.org/show_bug.cgi?id=54361).
  • Wikitext warnings will now hide when you remove wikitext from the paragraph you are editing.
  • The character inserter tool in the "Insert" menu has been slightly redesigned, to introduce larger buttons. Your suggestions for more significant changes to the special character inserter are still wanted.
  • The page options menu (three bars, next to the Cancel button) has expanded. You can create and edit redirect pages, set page options like __STATICREDIRECT__, __[NO]INDEX__ and __[NO]NEWEDITSECTION__, and more.  New keyboard shortcuts are listed there, and include undoing the last action, clearing formatting, and showing the shortcut help window. If you switch from VisualEditor to wikitext editing, your edit will now be tagged.
  • It is easier to edit images. There are more options and they are explained better. If you add new images to pages, they will also be default size.  You can now set image sizes to the default, if another size was previously specified. Full support for upright sizing systems, which more readily adapt image sizes to the reader's screen size, is planned.
  • VisualEditor adds fake blank lines so you can put your cursor there. These "slugs" are now smaller than normal blank lines, and are animated to be different from actual blank lines.
  • You can use the Ctrl+Alt+S or  Command+ Option+S shortcuts to open the save window, and you can preview your edit summary when checking your changes in the save window.
  • After community requests, VisualEditor has been deployed to the Interlingual Occidental Wikipedia, the Portuguese Wikibooks, and the French Wikiversity.
  • Any community can ask for custom icons for their language in the character formatting menu (bold, italic, etc.) by making a request on Bugzilla or by contacting Product Manager James Forrester.

The developers apologize for a regression bug with the deployment on 6 March 2014, which caused the incorrect removal of |upright size definitions on a handful of pages on the English Wikipedia, among others. The root cause was fixed, and the broken pages were fixed soon after.

Looking ahead:  Several template dialogs will become more compact. Looking further out, the developers are also working on support for viewing and editing hidden HTML comments. You will be able to see the Table of Contents change live as you edit the page, rather than it being hidden. In-line language setting (dir="rtl") may be offered to a few Wikipedias soon.

If you have questions or suggestions for future improvements, or if you encounter problems, please let everyone know by posting a note at Wikipedia:VisualEditor/Feedback or by joining the office hours on 19 April 2014 at 2000 UTC. Thank you! MediaWiki message delivery (talk) 22:44, 20 March 2014 (UTC)

RfC comment[edit]

Hi! Would you care to vote or comment at this RfC? I noticed your name at the talk page for WP:NOR and figured you'd be an appropriate editor to ask, since the discussion concerns that policy. Dan56 (talk) 06:00, 1 April 2014 (UTC)

"extract the content"[edit]

I understand why you don't like the phrase, but the point isn't to view each fact within the scope of the entire article. It's to prevent people from using Twitter sources and saying things like "well, you know 'it' must mean her lastest album because the date is three days before she announced it, and 'there' must mean London because she talked about London on Facebook the same day, and ...". Each cited source has to explicitly support the fact it is used to support. If you can think of a better phrase to get that across, I've got no objection to changing the text.—Kww(talk) 01:24, 11 April 2014 (UTC)

Kww, I don't think that's actually the point. Certainly that sort of thing would be bad, but the GNG is aiming at a broader idea: the sources (taken as a whole) need to provide enough information that you can write an encyclopedia article (without violating NOR). The requirement of "significant coverage" is not about whether the meaning of "it" or "there" is plainly stated.; it's about whether there is enough information in the sources (taken as a whole) to write an entire article without violating NOR.
The first words of the list item is the clue here: We're talking about why we need "significant coverage" before we can have an article on the subject. "It's Monday afternoon here in London, and I just finished my latest album" is not "significant coverage" of the album by any stretch of the imagination. You can certainly use a statement like that to support one sentence, and it won't require the least bit of OR to figure out the who, what, and where for your single sentence. But you simply cannot use a source like that to write an entire article. It's not possible to write an entire article from that tiny source, because it does not provide "significant coverage" of the subject. It only provides a tiny little detail. WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:43, 11 April 2014 (UTC)
It's that "taken as a whole" idea that your change missed. Your phrasing seems to apply it to each and every source individually, but your explanation here addresses the need to be able to add all the sources together as the foundation of an article.—Kww(talk) 02:10, 11 April 2014 (UTC)
Let's talk about this at WT:N. Other people might have good ideas. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:19, 11 April 2014 (UTC)

A barnstar for you![edit]

Barnstar of Humour Hires.png The Barnstar of Good Humor
For your hilarious yet insightful commentary at Wikipedia:Village pump (technical), striking the delicate balance of light humor and astute relevance and seriousness I've not seen anyone do in a long time. TeleComNasSprVen (talkcontribs) 07:50, 13 April 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. I'm glad. WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:53, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

Thank you[edit]

Thank you for your helpful responses to my questions on the WP:MEDRS talk page. How refreshing to be taken seriously and without all the attitude. I don't know why this is so difficult for some people. Notice that the contrast between you and your fellow editor didn't end there. Not content that he'd found enough reasons to insult me on that page, Jytdog decided to come to my own talk page to find new reasons. So pointless. So what if I don't understand medicine. I'm not a doctor. I'm an engineer. So again, thank you treating me nicely. Msnicki (talk) 01:26, 19 April 2014 (UTC)

Thank you for the kind words. WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:36, 19 April 2014 (UTC)

VisualEditor newsletter—April 2014[edit]

Since the last newsletter, the VisualEditor team has mostly worked on performance improvements, image settings, and preparation for a simplified citation template tool in its own menu.

  • In an oft-requested improvement, VisualEditor now displays red links (links to non-existent pages) in the proper color. Links to sister projects and external URLs are still the same blue as local links.
  • You can now open templates by double-clicking them or by selecting them and pressing  Return.  This also works for references, images, galleries, mathematical equations, and other "nodes".
  • VisualEditor has been disabled for pages that were created as translations of other pages using the Translate extension (common at Meta and MediaWiki.org). If a page has been marked for translation, you will see a warning if you try to edit it using VisualEditor.
  • When you try to edit protected pages with VisualEditor, the full protection notice and most recent log entry are displayed. Blocked users see the standard message for blocked users.
  • The developers fixed a bug that caused links on sub-pages to point to the wrong location.
  • The size-changing controls in the advanced settings section of the media or image dialog were simplified further. VisualEditor's media dialog supports more image display styles, like borderless images.
  • If there is not enough space on your screen to display all of the tabs (for instance, if your browser window is too narrow), the second edit tab will now fold into the drop-down menu (where the "Move" item is currently housed). On the English Wikipedia, this moves the "Edit beta" tab into the menu; on most projects, it moves the "Edit source" tab. This is only enabled in the default Vector skin, not for Monobook users. See this image for an example showing the "Edit source" and "View history" tabs after they moved into the drop-down menu.
  • After community requests, VisualEditor has been deployed as an opt-in feature at Meta and on the French Wikinews.
The drop-down menu is on the right, next to the search box.

Looking ahead:  A new, locally controlled menu of citation templates will put citations immediately in front of users. You will soon be able to see the Table of Contents while editing. Support for upright image sizes (preferred for accessibility) is being developed. In-line language setting (dir="rtl") will be offered as a Beta Feature soon. Looking further out, the developers are also working on support for viewing and editing hidden HTML comments. It will be possible to upload images to Commons from inside VisualEditor.

If you have questions or suggestions for future improvements, or if you encounter problems, please let everyone know by posting a note at Wikipedia:VisualEditor/Feedback or by joining the office hours on Monday, 19 May 2014 at 18:00 UTC. If you'd like to get this on your own page, subscribe at Wikipedia:VisualEditor#Newsletter for English Wikipedia only or at meta:VisualEditor/Newsletter for any project. Thank you! Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 20:23, 23 April 2014 (UTC)

Invitation join the new Physiology Wikiproject![edit]

Physiology gives us an understanding of how and why things in the field of medicine happen. Together, let us jumpstart the project and get it going. Our energy is all it needs.

Based on the long felt gap for categorization and improvization of WP:MED articles relating to the field of physiology, the new WikiProject Physiology has been created. WikiProject Physiology is still in its infancy and needs your help. On behalf of a group of editors striving to improve the quality of physiology articles here on Wikipedia, I would like to invite you to come on board and participate in the betterment of physiology related articles. Help us to jumpstart this WikiProject.

  • Feel free to leave us a message at any time on the WikiProkect Physiology talk page. If you are interested in joining the project yourself, there is a participant list where you can sign up. Please leave a message on the talk page if you have any problems, suggestions, would like review of an article, need suggestions for articles to edit, or would like some collaboration when editing!
  • You can tag the talk pages of relevant articles with {{WikiProject Physiology|class=|importance=}} with your assessment of the article class and importance alongwith. Please note that WP:Physiology, WP:Physio, WP:Phy can be used interchangeably.
  • You will make a big difference to the quality of information by adding reliable sources. Sourcing physiology articles is essential and makes a big difference to the quality of articles. And, while you're at it, why not use a book to source information, which can source multiple articles at once!
  • We try and use a standard way of arranging the content in each article. That layout is here. These headings let us have a standard way of presenting the information in anatomical articles, indicate what information may have been forgotten, and save angst when trying to decide how to organise an article. That said, this might not suit every article. If in doubt, be bold!
  • Why not try and strive to create a good article! Physiology related articles are often small in scope, have available sources, and only a limited amount of research available that is readily presentable!
  • Your contributions to the WikiProject page, related categories and templates is also welcome.
  • To invite other editors to this WikiProject, copy and past this template (with the signature):
  • To welcome editors of physiology articles, copy and past this template (with the signature):
  • You can feel free to contact us on the WikiProkect Physiology talk page if you have any problems, or wish to join us. You can also put your suggestions there and discuss the scope of participation.

Hoping for your cooperation! DiptanshuTalk 12:24, 27 April 2014 (UTC)

Osteopathic manipulative medicine[edit]

Hi WhatamIdoing, just wanted to let you know that Alexbrn responded to your comment and the discussion is ongoing. TylerDurden8823 (talk) 08:05, 28 April 2014 (UTC)

Barnstar[edit]

MedicineBarnstar.png The Medicine Barnstar
To WhatamIdoing, thank you for your dedication to improving medical articles. Axl ¤ [Talk] 09:49, 29 April 2014 (UTC)

Thank you for being one of Wikipedia's top medical contributors![edit]

please help translate this message into the local language
Wiki Project Med Foundation logo.svg The Cure Award
In 2013 you were one of the top 300 medical editors across any language of Wikipedia. Thank you so much for helping bring free, complete, accurate, up-to-date medical information to the public. We really appreciate you and the vital work you do!

We are wondering about the educational background of our top medical editors. Would you please complete a quick 5-question survey? (please only fill this out if you received the award)

Thanks again :) --Ocaasi, Doc James and the team at Wiki Project Med Foundation

WT:AT[edit]

Hi, you wrote "There's a remarkably lousy test proposed above," - I agree with you comments (though software costs are peanuts for publishers, the cost of French Polish Vietnamese is (a) the $1,000s it costs to employ extra proofreaders (b) doubling at least publication schedules). What particular edit by whom are you referring to, I see several comments scrolling up. Could you link to the specific one? Many thanks. In ictu oculi (talk) 09:09, 10 May 2014 (UTC)

In ictu oculi,
  • You don't employ extra proofreaders to use diacritics on names in English articles. Assuming that there is a proofreader at all, the same person proofreads the entire article. To use Vietnamese diacritics on a couple of names, you don't need a proofreader who specializes in Vietnamese. At the very most, you would give the proofreader one accurate copy of each name and ask them to make sure that each instance of that name matches it. In other instances (if you use extensive passages or a non-Latin language, for example), the publisher tells the author to proofread the non-English sections. Or, in an unfortunately common arrangement, you don't have a proofreader at all.
  • Why do you think that adding a few diacritics would mean that you need to double the publication schedule? I'm betting that using diacritics for a Vietnamese player would add maybe 60 seconds to the time needed to proofread a feature-length article. That's all the extra time it would take me, anyway. WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:17, 10 May 2014 (UTC)
I'm not talking about articles, I'm talking about print sources. In ictu oculi (talk) 00:19, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
In ictu oculi, so am I. I'm talking entirely about reliable sources that normally appear in print, like newspaper articles, magazine articles, and academic journal articles.
Have you looked at sources like The New York Times Manual of Style and Usage? It explicitly says, on page 6, not to use accent marks or other diacritics for any language except a few European ones, and to omit accents not only from all non-English words (including all places), but also from all names of people who do not live in the US, and only to include accents on the names of US residents if you are absolutely certain that the person prefers it that way.
In the face of an explicit editorial statement against using diacritics like that, the only possible conclusion is that they do not use Vietnamese diacritics because the made an conscious decision not to. WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:00, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
Okay, correction obviously, I was forgetting newspapers also still exist on paper, I am talking about book print sources. Clearly the only possible conclusion is that they do not use Vietnamese diacritics because they made an conscious decision not to. As I said above "I agree with you comments", which includes because they made an conscious decision not to. We could also adopt a short-turnaround newspaper MOS if we made a conscious decision to do so. In ictu oculi (talk) 02:09, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
  • What was the specific diff of the "lousy test"? In ictu oculi (talk) 02:12, 11 May 2014 (UTC)

Re: Male rape[edit]

Thank you for your warning. Gosh, I should change it right away. I hope you can help me to check after i change it :( thank you. Okkisafire (talk) 06:29, 11 May 2014 (UTC)

BUT IF I can't fix it, it will be better if the article is deleted entirely. I don't want to violate the laws. Okkisafire (talk) 06:32, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
Is it allowable if i publish the statistical numbers or other statistical data? Okkisafire (talk) 06:37, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
And actually, it was Flyer22 who made the trivial changes, not me. She helps a lot. Okkisafire (talk) 06:41, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
Mr. Whatamidoing, if you need my quick respond next time, I suggest you to leave your message on my Indonesian Wikipedia talk page. This problem surely makes me feel nervous -_-" and fortunately I open English Wikipedia today. Okkisafire (talk) 06:51, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
I'm finish. Please check it, if I still do something wrong. And about the grammatical error, I'll ask my friends to repair it. Thank you :) Okkisafire (talk) 09:36, 11 May 2014 (UTC)

So how is it? Is it acceptable already? Okkisafire (talk) 02:45, 12 May 2014 (UTC)

I don't know. To answer that, I would have to read every single source, which I unfortunately do not have time to do. The changes you made looked pretty good, but I am not an expert in either the subject or in copyright law.
If there are other problems, then whoever notices those problems will either fix it or tell you about the problems they found. WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:07, 12 May 2014 (UTC)

21-OH[edit]

I do hope that you see this message, but either way, I do not know my way around Wikipedia enough to create categories on this page to address my concern. I recently added Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia due to 21-Hydroxylase Deficiency as a cause for Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and my entry was reverted to the old. What I've read is that it affects 1 in 8 Ashkenazi Jews, otherwise known as Germanic Jews. They lived in Germany, Switzerland, and France, and many of their descendants are American. Can we at least add it to the category, so people can be aware of it when researching this condition(PCOS)?

Thank you for your time, David Winkler — Preceding unsigned comment added by Davidlwinkler (talkcontribs) 19:29, 15 May 2014 (UTC)

Hi David, and welcome to Wikipedia! I hope you'll stick around.
Congenital adrenal hyperplasia due to 21-hydroxylase deficiency affects one in 15,000 children, according to the article, which is not very many. According to this journal article, it affects only 1–2% of Ashkenazi Jews. The one-in-eight number is probably the frequency of the recessive gene, not the frequency of the disease. What this means, in effect, is that even among the high-risk population of Ashkenazi Jewish women, the cause of PCOS-like symptoms is probably not CAH.
By the way, did you know that there is an article about the Medical genetics of Jews? I don't know if it's current, but I thought it might be interesting to you. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:18, 15 May 2014 (UTC)

Thank you for your response and the good explanation regarding percentages. What I do know is that depending if one or both genes are defective then you can either be a carrier or have the disease, respectively. A carrier can develop PCOS without displaying other characteristics such as hirsutism or shortness of stature. As a layman, I of course have many questions as my ex-wife went 45 years without being diagnosed until I noticed peculiar signs and symptoms in my son such as hirsutism, and shortness of stature.

My father's ancestors migrated to America from the Rhineland Valley of Switzerland where a high percentage of the population is of Ashkenazi inheritance. Personally, I suffered a severe reaction along with acute kidney failure due to the ingestion of navy beans and my cardiologist is helping me look for a better primary to write the case study. In a month or two from now I'll send you a link to the medical journal where it's published. I diagnosed myself through Google and Wiki before my physicians gave me a symptomatic diagnosis for the horrifying experience I suffered. The genetic test was negative so I guarantee it's a huge breakthrough and you'll hear about it. Because of it, you'll find at the top of the chart a remark about Favism with some ???s next to it... [[1]]

Thank you again! David — Preceding unsigned comment added by Davidlwinkler (talkcontribs) 02:07, 18 May 2014 (UTC)

This fringe journal issue[edit]

Keeps coming up. Do you think we could get some wider input and get some better clarity? (I would certainly appreciate it). My impression is that while people are often very keen to discuss individual cases - often heatedly - there is less enthusiasm for discussing this issue in the abstract. Perhaps if we try and get some better wording at WP:FRINGE and/or WP:MEDRS that might pique some interest? Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 15:20, 16 May 2014 (UTC)

A general rule should be, if it's indexed at PubMed, it's not a fringe journal. There's reasons why I and many other editors use exclusively Pubmed when researching and discussing complementary medicines. DVMt (talk) 15:25, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
PubMed is not an indexing service. It includes all kinds of rubbish, like articles from the aforementioned Homeopathy journal. MEDLINE indexing - a different thing - is already a factor mentioned at WP:MEDRS. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 15:28, 16 May 2014 (UTC)

So let's talk about the abstract for a moment: my main concern is people (policy writers and quoters) using the wrong words to describe concepts. I'm a policy wonk; this matters to me. I spent three years cleaning up after people who thought that secondary and independent were synonyms. We have almost convinced everyone that WP:Secondary does not mean independent, although there's one (otherwise truly excellent) editor who still thinks that this is a dubious distinction. I really, really, really do not want to go through the same long process with mainstream and independent.

I recognize FRINGE's needs. I also recognize FRINGE's uses, which are far broader than what was intended. FRINGE is a convenient stick for beating POV pushers, and it gets used against people pushing views that aren't really FRINGE.

This takes us to the issue of altmed vs esoteric: FRINGE is intended to cover stuff Hulda Regehr Clark and Psychic surgery—stuff that nobody really believes is useful, not even other altmed people. It is not intended to cover stuff like Dance therapy, which is technically both "unproven" and "alternative" for cancer patients, but that is readily accepted by everyone ("I think you need to get some exercise." "I hate going to the gym. How about I go dancing instead?" "As long as your heart rate gets up into the target range for at least half an hour, that's fine"). In other words, FRINGE is for stuff that is as widely discredited and as widely rejected as the Moon landing conspiracy theories. That doesn't include all of altmed. WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:46, 16 May 2014 (UTC)

Well put. I also feel that we are labelling whole systems of healing and/or professions as fringe as opposed to delineating clearly what aspects may be fringe and what's not. DVMt (talk) 15:51, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
@WAID, yes - it's the grey area articles (notably chiropractic and acupuncture) where this is most problematic (partly why I don't edit them much as I think they are as intractable as Israel/Palestine articles). Things like dance therapy, T'ai chi and so on - as complementary therapies - are less problematic, except where their benefits are sometime overstated. And then there are the "obvious" and well-described fringe things: e.g. Craniosacral therapy, Gerson therapy, homeopathy (though all these articles are subject to regular skirmishes).
So, I think you're raising a concern "behind" the question of fringe journals, which is that WP:FRINGE is being used in a "far broader" way than was intended. Could we isolate some particular wording in WP:FRINGE that bears on this? Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 16:13, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
Chiropractic is also a complimentary therapy which is used primarily for MSK issues and back pain and neck pain in particular. 9/10 patients present to DCs for MSK complaints [2], have developed evidence-based guidelines [3] , have developed an evidence-based faction in the profession [4] have pioneered World Spine Care [5] which, surprise, focuses on evidence-based management of spinal disorders in the 3rd world, and now DCs are permanent part of the Olympic games as part of the medical staff [6] and [7]. Comparing the chiropractic with homeopathy is apples and oranges at this point. DVMt (talk) 17:06, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
But Alex is probably right that the dispute is probably intractable, because if you wrote about that 90%, you'd have some "straight" person come over and say that you were misrepresenting his profession by not emphasizing the other stuff, and some anti-chiropractic editor egging him on, because he'd rather discredit everything, and emphasizing the old garbage makes it easier to ridicule (which is true for mainstream, too; for example, there are a lot of older midwives in the US who chose their profession because mainstream medical care was so awful: Don't touch the baby, especially premature babies! Just put them down on their tummies and leave them alone. They're too fragile to hold).
Alex, I think it might be easier to address the medical issues rather than the general ones. We could do that by saying that altmed is not automatically fringe, and that something allegedly "mainstream" can be. I often find that it's useful to give examples, because that gives people a better sense of the scope and scale. I think that most editors can grasp the difference between non-fringe-y altmed, like massage or echinacea supplements, and the true fringe-y stuff like Gerson therapy.
On a related point, I've finally started the fairly tedious and somewhat complicated work of merging WP:INDY and WP:Third-party sources. We've talked about it for years. It may take me months to finish, but when that's done, it should help with my main concern, which is people mis-using independent when they really mean biased. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:38, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
I agree with the majority of your point, WAID, but for the straight DC to come on and and challenge that, they would need the appropriate reliable source. I guess what I'm getting at, specifically, is chiropractic management of MSK issues considered fringe? This article suggests its a 80/20 in favour of DCs who practice primarily MSK [8]. The profession has endorsed a spinal health experts identity at the international level (WFC) it was confirmed by the colleges [9] and in this report from 2013 confirms Palmer is onboard as well [10]. It's really the fringe within chiropractic that does not endorse the spinal health/msk model and I'd like for that to be clear. DVMt (talk) 21:02, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
I don't think that the common forms of manipulative management of MSK pain is fringe, whether that's done by a DC or a DO or a PT or the patient himself. It may not work especially well for chronic back pain, but, then, neither does surgery or drug treatment. "Effective" is not what makes something mainstream, minority, or fringe. What matters is whether it's generally accepted in the entire, big-tent field of medicine (not just within its own field). The views of the straight DCs or the mixer DCs don't matter as much as the views of the non-DCs.
So imagine a survey not of chiropractors, but of physicians, nurse practitioners, clinical officers, physical therapists, sports medicine people, allied health workers, etc., even dentists and licensed altmed people, like massage therapists and acupuncturists. Do they recommend it? Do they use it personally? AFAICT, most mainstream healthcare practitioners around the world recommend manipulative medicine and/or acupuncture for MSK pain (to suitable patients, however they define that); therefore, that's mainstream.
To find out whether this sub-field is fringe, we ask the same question: Do the people in this broad field recommend "straight" chiropractic for non-MSK stuff, or only MSK-type chiropractic? AFAICT, a mainstream practitioner is likely to oppose chiropractic for, say, cancer care or diabetes, even if he or she recommends it routinely for an acute back injury. Almost no one (except straight DCs themselves) recommends it for cancer or diabetes or any number of the other things that straight DCs claim to be able to treat; therefore, those uses would be fringe.
Does the system for figuring this out make sense? WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:28, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
Well it seems we agree about that as well. How do we get that to be reflected however? Your interpretation that manipulative treatment for MSK pain is mainstream is something that is inherently logical yet because this conversation isn't happening at WT:MED or WP:FRINGE it's going to be ignored and the usual extremists battles will play out. How do we go forward? DVMt (talk) 23:09, 16 May 2014 (UTC)
Somebody with back pain might do as well just doing exercise, get the benefits without the magical trappings and attendant bill! Cost-effectiveness is an important consideration: PMID 21328304 ? By "manipulative treatment" do you mean massage, physiotherapy ... ? it seems a broad term. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 03:38, 17 May 2014 (UTC)
You're assuming that it's magical when someone has a mechanical MSK problem and someone provides a mechanical solution to a mechanical problem is magical. There is tons of science in musculoskeletal medicine regarding manipulative therapies, in regards to their effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, safety, basic sciences, that are done by by primarily DOs, DCs, PTs and PhDs from various fields such as engineering, statistics, anatomy, epidemiology, etc. Manipulative medicine is broad but the context in which it is used determines whether or not it has mainstream acceptance. In the case of manipulative medicine, it is mainstream for MSK but not for non-MSK. The difference being there isn't presently a) sufficient evidence that demonstrates comparable effectiveness b) is accepted within the health professions and the public. We're 40 years deep now into research of manipulative therapies for MSK disorders and the WP default position is that it's pseudoscientific. That's bogus. DVMt (talk) 04:45, 17 May 2014 (UTC)
No, it's magical when it incorporates (and charges for) magical elements like detecting vital vibrations or subluxation, and/or attempts to treat systemic conditions which have no MSK connection. "Manipulative medicine" is too broad a term to be useful: of course some kinds of manipulation are useful. Wikipedia has no "default position" and does not even mention pseudoscience in relation to Physical therapy, say. (Of course this raises the question: if chiropractic/osteo* are, in effect, equivalent to massage or 'vanilla' physical therapy, what is their distinctive reason for existing? Relatedly, proponents of these magicks are keen to make out that they are as one with the acknowledged benefits of vanilla therapy, and so perfectly mainstream thank you very much. This is a game that recurs on Wikipedia, but it's a bit rum: like claiming homeopathy is legitimate because drinking its remedies is known to cure dehydration!) Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 06:42, 17 May 2014 (UTC)
I was under the impression that a partially dislocated joint ("subluxation") was something that even orthopedic surgeons could detect. Face-wink.svg They even seem to think that it could happen in the spine, and that it could cause some problems that surface elsewhere, like pain in the leg.
Wikipedia, the publication, may not have a default position, but the editorial community here does, and it lines up with Quackwatch's opinions very neatly.
Cost is irrelevant to the question of whether it works, and whether it works is irrelevant to whether it is mainstream. Arthroscopic knee surgery for knee pain has been demonstrated to be useless with high-quality evidence, but it's mainstream. WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:10, 17 May 2014 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── "the editorial community here does, and it lines up with Quackwatch's opinions very neatly" ← that is generally true: Wikipedia has a skeptic outlook and oppresses fringe viewpoints. Such is the operation of consensus. Personally, I think that is A Good Thing. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 15:18, 17 May 2014 (UTC)

Alexbrn, you're missing the point again. Manipulative medicine manipulates 'something i.e. manipulable lesion. You are referring to 'magical' subluxations which, is of course, the metaphysical POV which is fringe, but yet cannot seem to understand that you're endorsing the 'straight' perspective (fringe) and ignoring the mainstream perspective (biomechanical lesion) that is found in the ICD-10 under the MSK section [11]. So unless you're stating that the ICD-10 and the WHO are not credible then you'll need to revise your rather extremist POV. Questioning the existence of osteo/chiro is beyond the scope of this thread, but I would add the research shows that 90% of MM in North America are carried out by chiropractors with the balance being provided by osteos and physios. Also, regarding treating systemic disease, I already demonstrated that according to the research that # is 10%. So you're focusing again on the 1/10 as opposed to the 9/10. Also, you're conflating things again, with homeopathy and now vanilla therapy. It would be much easier if we stuck to this subject. So long as you keep thinking that the dysfunctional articulations whether or not they are in the spine or peripheral joints don't exist then you miss the point why professions DOs, DCs, PTs, DVMs, NDs and some MDs manipulate. DVMt (talk) 15:53, 17 May 2014 (UTC)
Alex, this talk about magick isn't helpful. If you wake up with a crick in your neck (has that ever happened to you?), and someone pushes or pulls on your neck for a second, and immediately afterwards, you have full range of motion in your neck, then there's no magick of any kind involved. "A crick in the neck" is a "subluxation" by everyone's definition, and manipulative treatment seems to be pretty immediately effective for it from what I've heard.
The community runs skeptical, but source-based NPOV is not optional, even if the unsourced or undue material is WP:The Truth™ according to all right-thinking rational people. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:33, 17 May 2014 (UTC)
WAID, re: the question above (MM for MSK conditions) which is currently default pseudoscience, where would be the best avenue to have a broad discussion on this and come to some kind of consensus? This would apply to osteo, chiro, PT and others that use manipulative techniques for MSK conditions. DVMt (talk) 15:39, 19 May 2014 (UTC)
It depends on what you want to achieve. Are you looking for a specific change to a guideline (e.g., adding a note to FRINGE that altmed is not 100% fringe-y), or are you looking for a general discussion? WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:29, 19 May 2014 (UTC)
I would like there not to be blanket like descriptions, such as 100% of alt-med is fringe and there is no science whatsoever in CAM. But rather than be too broad about it, I'd like to stick to MM for MSK. CON can change and it should reflect the times. Having QuackWatch be the judge, jury and executioner, well, isn't very balanced. DVMt (talk) 01:34, 21 May 2014 (UTC)
Fuzzy boundaries. CAM ≠ alternative medicine. MM ≠ fringe. All alternative medicine (in the sense of unproven things used/promoted as an effective alternative to medicine in pursuit of medical goals) is fringe by definition. As has been said many times, alternative medicine that works is ... medicine. Complementary therapies (i.e. used as an adjunct to medicine) can be nice & helpful, but sometimes are subject to exaggerated claims. The big picture here is that some chiropractors want to make a land grab for spinal manipulation in general and re-brand, cutting the loony element adrift. Good luck to them, but Wikipedia can only observe, and not participate in, these struggles. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 05:40, 21 May 2014 (UTC)
The definition of FRINGE is not "unproven". The definition of "medicine" is not "things that work". Really: that's an appealing definition, but it is by no means generally used or generally accepted. That is strictly a minority viewpoint. If that were true, then all sorts of conventional medicine would suddenly become "alternative", from including: refusing to let patients drink water eight hours before surgery; refusing to let them eat after surgery; doing almost any sort of arthroscopic knee surgery for cartilage damage; any cough medicine containing dextromethorphan; prescribing antidepressants for mild depression; and many, many more. The opposite of alternative is conventional. Both conventional and alternative could be evidence-based.
Or, to put it another way, if you wake up with a crick in your neck and a chiropractor fixes it for you, that was "alternative" even if it worked, but if a PT made exactly the same motions, then it's "conventional" even if it didn't work. Eventually, that treatment might become generally accepted, in which case it will stop being called alternative, but the process is not instantaneous. This has happened in both directions, but one simple example is childbirth: Lamaze techniques used to be "alternative" and now they're not, and home births used to be considered conventional, but now they're alternative (in the US). Does the baby say, "You've labeled this 'alternative', so I refuse to get born"? No. Homebirths are still effective at birthing babies (safe, even, for low-risk pregnancies), and Lamaze breathing is no more effective now than it was when it was called alternative and bashed by anestheisologists and obstetricians all over the country. The label has more to do with social reality than with biological reality. WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:19, 21 May 2014 (UTC)
Yes, and I should have added "... as generally accepted by respected etc. sources". MM is not inherently fringe; but it would be if it used to treat (say) pancreatitis. Are we actually disagreeing? Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 16:27, 21 May 2014 (UTC)
To the extent that you keep saying that "All alternative medicine is fringe" or "All unproven substitutes for conventional care are fringe", then, yes, we are disagreeing.
You seem to be operating in a "digital" system: something is either wholly conventional or wholly fringe, with no middle ground between the two. I see this as more of a spectrum issue. FRINGE is meant to deal with the stuff that's really "out there", not the stuff that is just a little less accepted than average. WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:19, 21 May 2014 (UTC)
Well, no - I wrote about the "grey area" above, and constrained my definition of fringe altmed to "unproven things used/promoted as an effective alternative to medicine in pursuit of medical goals". Sure, there are degrees of fringeiness. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 17:29, 21 May 2014 (UTC)
Perhaps some examples will help. Can you name five altmed practices that are truly altmed (that is, truly substitutes for conventional care) but not FRINGE, and explain why they're not FRINGE? Can you name five others that are truly FRINGE, and explain why they are? WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:10, 21 May 2014 (UTC)
Alexbrn, I see the same as WAID, you're operating in a false dichotomy either some is completely and incompletely fringe. Again, you bring up MM and pancreatitis whereas I specifically stated is MM for MSK fringe? WP (and your line of reasoning) also is always implying of alt-med is in an alternative to medicine instead being complementary. By your logic, there are also degrees of 'mainstreamness'. So long as you take what seems to be a dogmatic skeptical stance (which is the polar opposite of the 'true believers' then this is problematic. To suggest there is no science in manipulative therapy research is, well not true. There are mechanisms of action which are known, including a mix of biomechanical [12], somatosensory activation [13] neural responses (primarily neuromuscular) [14] and sensorimotor integration [15]. These are 4 reviews that get dismissed as fringe, well, since some medical physicians here operate under the assumption that a) SMT is bogus/fringe, b) SMT= pseudoscientific and c) all 'altmed' journals are inherently bogus and biased. Like WAID correctly asserted, there is a spectrum of quality and professionalization of specific professions and/or interventions. Furthermore, MUA is something that is gaining increasing interest as this document shows [16] and specifically states that since the 1980s "spinal manipulation has gained mainstream recognition". Surely in 2014, 30 years after the fact it was dubbed to have gained mainstream recognition one would think that this evolution would be noted. The fuzziness of which you speak of is actually pretty clear: MM for MSK and MM for non-MSK. Unfortunately, Alexbrn and others who share the same hard-line POV conflates the two while I am merely trying provide a long-term solution that affects DCs, DOs, PTs, some MDs and some DVMs. DVMt (talk) 00:37, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
@DVMt As I wrote, "MM ≠ fringe" ... there are valid applications, but that does not legitimize otherwise quack professions which encompass it. Alternative medicine is different from complementary medicine (except in the minds of some Americans, I understand, because of a political decision taken there once to conflate the two). I don't know what your point about MUA is. MUA physicians claim it is "mainstream" - what a surprise! BTW, our article on Manipulation under anesthesia is a massive MEDRS fail, no? Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 05:23, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
that does not legitimize otherwise quack professions which encompass it
Is the converse also true? Do quacks among MDs de-legitimize that whole profession? Or should we look at the majority instead of the minority? WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:18, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
Yes, to some degree: that's why "MD" is no guarantee of anything much. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 17:34, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
@WAID I suppose once something is known to work it already has the trappings of convention to some degree, but from recent editing I can think of some altmed-ish things which are not really fringe (because: they have been found effective to some degree): Mindfulness for anxiety (rather than medication); honey for treating coughs (rather than some kinds of medication); Tea Tree Oil for fungal nail infection (perhaps, rather than pharmaceutical preparations); melatonin for aiding sleep. One fascinating one is circumcision for HIV prevention, which seems to have started life as a kite-flying exercise by proponents of circumcision, but turned out to be true (so is not really now altmed, I suppose). For the firmly fringe you might look at Burzynski clinic, craniosacral therapy, rife machines, reiki ... Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 06:07, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
I asked for things that are really-truly-cross-your-heart-and-hope-to-die altmed, not things that you accept as nearly conventional, but your reasoning is illuminating enough: you persist in saying that things that aren't effective are fringe. Shall we now go tag everything about OTC cough syrup as fringe? Where exactly in FRINGE does it say that all unproven or ineffective medical treatments are FRINGE?
(Also, the physician described here does not sound like a "proponent of circumcision" to me.) WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:18, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
No, you misrepresent what I am saying. To repeat, the fringe altmed intersection happens for "unproven things used/promoted as an effective alternatives to medicine in pursuit of medical goals". For the circumcision thing, I was thinking of much earlier - of Aaron J. Fink for example. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 17:34, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
Alexbrn doesn't seem to consider the majority vs. the minority, even if the data suggests it's a 80/20. Instead, it's more black and white and labelling a whole profession as quackery. If MM doesn't equal fringe then why are you editing in the exact opposite manner and putting in the lead the OMM is pseudoscientific? You're saying one thing here and doing the exact opposite. Also, WAID raises an excellent point, you persist in saying that things that aren't effective are fringe.. I'd like to hear your clarification of this, please. DVMt (talk) 17:10, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
More fuzzy straw men. MM (in general) ≠ OMT (a system based on Still's dogma). Ineffective things aren't fringe; ineffective things promoted as effective alternatives to effective things (at least) are. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 17:34, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
Nothing fuzzy, and certainly not a straw man argument. Whether it's OMM, CMM, OMPT, it's still MM. And that's the point. We agree that MM for MSK isn't fringe. Next up, is reworking WP:FRINGE so that the major key points of this discussion are noted and updated. Currently fringe has gone rogue and that's leading to chronic problems. We can do better. DVMt (talk) 23:32, 22 May 2014 (UTC)
"Whether it's OMM, CMM, OMPT, it's still MM" ← no, it is a type of MM; you are blurring categories. Cranial therapy is a type of MM, and is as hardcore fringe as you could hope to find. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 04:25, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────

Alexbrn says, the fringe altmed intersection happens for "unproven things used/promoted as an effective alternatives to medicine in pursuit of medical goals".

So Alex apparently believes that standard OTC cough syrup is FRINGE altmed:

  • It is promoted as being effective for suppressing coughs, and it has been scientifically proven to be useless.
  • It is promoted as an alternative to prescription drugs that actually work (e.g., codeine). Nobody recommends taking OTC cough syrup when you're already taking codeine.
  • It is promoted "in pursuit of medical goals", namely to make sick people stop coughing.

Now, if dextromethorphan isn't really FRINGE altmed according to your definition, then tell me what dextromethorphan actually is. How could someone completely unfamiliar with cough treatments tell the difference between the wholly ineffective dextromethorphan, which is sold in a bottle that claims it will suppress a cough, and some equally ineffective homeopathic water, which is also sold in a bottle that claims it will suppress a cough? WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:07, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

To be accurate, a substance can't be fringe. But assuming your "scientifically proven to be useless" is solid and settled, the promotion of the substance's worth in the face of that evidence would be fringe. To quote the guidance: "We use the term fringe theory in a very broad sense to describe ideas that depart significantly from the prevailing or mainstream view in its particular field. For example, fringe theories in science depart significantly from mainstream science and have little or no scientific support." Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 05:54, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
The science is solid here.
Here's the thing: Medicine is not "science". If you look around the drug store, you will see that promoting dextromethorphan as an effective cough suppressant is common. wikt:Mainstream means "Used or accepted broadly rather than by a tiny fraction of a population or market." Mainstream means "a prevailing current or direction of activity or influence". Mainstream doesn't mean "no scientific support".
So what's broadly used for treating coughs? The US alone spends $4 billion on cough medicines containing this stuff each year. What's broadly accepted? It is (still) FDA approved for this indication. What's the prevailing activity? If a non-alt-med person has a cough, he buys this stuff. What's the current standard? This is recommended every day by doctors all over the world, especially if they think that you aren't miserable enough to justify a codeine prescription. (Some of those doctors probably don't know that it doesn't work, but others do, and recommend it as an unannounced placebo, or to get you to take the other drugs in the same cough medicine.)
This is mainstream. This is conventional. It's not evidence-based, but mainstream medicine in general is not evidence-based.
Or, to put it another way, this isn't FRINGE, because medicine isn't science. WhatamIdoing (talk) 14:23, 23 May 2014 (UTC)
Thank you, WAID, for using this excellent example of how Alex's view of fringe, may very well be fringe in itself. I think there's so conflation and confabulation going on. DVMt (talk) 16:24, 24 May 2014 (UTC)
So, did you all reach a conclusion? It doesn't really seem like the conversation was ever really finished. TylerDurden8823 (talk) 06:27, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
I think we're agreeing to disagree. "Mainstream medicine in general is not evidence-based" ... right. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 07:19, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
Not at all. What we're seeing is how your interpretation of fringe is off-base. And since you're editing fringe-related topics with an incorrect perception, then this false idea gets promulgated. So, as far as I see it, the burden is on you to explain your position more succinctly. DVMt (talk) 13:45, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
LOL - tell you what, go to the Homeopathy article and argue that fringe doesn't apply because medicine is not a science. See how far you get with that. Let me quote you WP:FRINGE again: "We use the term fringe theory in a very broad sense to describe ideas that depart significantly from the prevailing or mainstream view in its particular field". I understand there are people who want to change it so we do not define fringe "in a very broad sense", but their argument is not with me, it is with the guidance. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 14:01, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
You're conflating things, Alex. First, we aren't discussing Homeopathy, which is a red-herring. Second, I agree with you homeopathy is bunk, so we can clear that up right now. This thread is about MM for MSK. In this discussion here, you've made claims which we have rebutted. It's up to you to prove your point. You're also misrepresenting what WAID is saying. For instance, off-label use isn't exactly scientific, nor proven, and pretty controversial. Specifically it states Off-label use is the use of pharmaceutical drugs for an unapproved indication or in an unapproved age group, unapproved dosage, or unapproved form of administration.. Pot meet kettle. DVMt (talk) 15:56, 6 June 2014 (UTC)

Fringe journals break[edit]

Alex, perhaps we're talking about different things when we say evidence-based. So imagine that you go into the doctor for an annual physical. Think about all the things that happen. Do you know anything about the evidence for those things? There's very little. In fact, there's some good evidence that you shouldn't be there at all. They check your weight: fine, but does the doctor talk to you about it? Probably not. The doctor's decision to skip that conversation is consistent with conventional medical practice, but a departure from evidence-based medicine. They take your temperature: fine, it's an extremely low-risk test, but there's zero evidence that it's anything other than a waste of time for a healthy person, so that's a departure from evidence-based medicine. They take your blood pressure: fine, and that's consistent with evidence-based medicine. They check your heart rate, even though there's zero evidence that this is a worthwhile test in a person who claims and appears to be healthy, so that's another departure from evidence-based medicine. They take a health history, but they ask questions for which there's no evidence (or even evidence against), and they omit other questions for which there is excellent evidence. Then the doctor refuses to discuss points in that history for which there is good evidence that he should (sexual health is the most commonly given example), which is another use of conventional medical practice while rejecting evidence-based practice. (The doctor will plead a lack of time if pressed on this point, but he does somehow find time to make small talk about your family or job.) He (I assume you see a male, since most people's GP matches their own gender) will listen to your heart and lungs (good evidence). He'll palpate your neck (there's some good evidence against doing this). And so forth, through the entire ritual.

Or let's take another common scenario: A month after this rather pointless physical, you have a bad cold, so you go to the doctor. A bad cough is the #1 reason to see a doctor.

When you make the appointment, do they tell you what the evidence says about whether you should be seeing the doctor at all? No. They follow the conventional model of letting the patient choose when to make an appointment. When you get there, they check your weight. Why? No good reason: your weight won't have changed much in the intervening month, and any variation will be put down to a change in clothing, hydration status, or when you last ate. They check your temperature (good evidence) and blood pressure (no good evidence that I've seen for this, but we'll say that they're doing it as general preventive medicine rather than related to your cold). They ask how long the cold's been going on (good) and what your symptoms are (good), but don't ask whether it's keeping you from sleeping well (bad) or whether you are exposed to tobacco, marijuana or other smoke (bad). With luck, they'll check your chart or ask if you have any special risk factors (you can't practice evidence-based medicine for a cold if you don't know whether the person has asthma, AIDS, or other risk factors). You tell them that you have a bad cough, a runny nose, a sore throat, and no fever. They look down your throat and do a rapid strep test, saying "strep is going around" (bad; strep is basically always going around, and the evidence says that they're not appropriate for people with your symptoms). They check for lung sounds (good) and maybe decide to send you off for a chest X-ray (maybe good, but probably bad in this case: it depends on the reason). Then they conclude that no fever and no inappropriate lung noises (and a clear chest X-ray, if one was ordered) means that you just have a boring old cold. You say that you really just want to stop coughing because your muscles hurt so much, so the doctor recommends over-the-counter cough syrup, which is conventional but a clear violation of evidence-based medicine. Then he suggests coming back if it hasn't cleared up in two weeks, which is a very conventional recommendation, but one that I've personally seen zero evidence to support.

Do you see how the pattern here? Quite a lot of what's happening in these very common medical encounters has nothing to do with the evidence, and everything to do with what patients have been culturally conditioned to expect. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:10, 6 June 2014 (UTC)

What a load of bollocks! You are so distant from reality (my reality anyway). This bears no real resemblance to my interaction with medical professionals. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 18:52, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
Alexbrn you've just experienced cognitive dissonance. You've never even considered the possibility that conventional medicine wasn't solely based on evidence? We are culturally conditioned, we bring our Western lens, just as the East brings its own view. You are basing this on a n=1 as opposed to understanding the bigger picture. The science and art of medicine is much more than writing a script. The doctor-patient interaction is fundamental in the healing process. As is mind-body therapies and relaxation therapies. Body based manipulative therapies. Your personal opinion is getting in the way of facts, and evidence. The longer this thread goes, it seems like you are misinterpreting what is actually fringe and what is assumed to be fringe. Medicine isn't completely scientific. CAM isn't completely unscientific. These issues exists on a continuum and your seemingly cynical viewpoint isn't productive moving the discussion forward. I am sure many others would be interested in this conversation, as it is germane to many topics. Perhaps we can open this up for a RfC or DR. Maybe even move it to the Fringe Talk Page? There's been a lot of good evidence presented that supports we redefine fringe to be more specific and more contextual. The black and white, false dichotomy logical fallacy has been exposed, and we can really use this to try to improve things over a long-standing, chronic problem at WP, namely the science of CAM. WP asserts CAM is 100% pseudoscientific and not based on solid science. Well, neither is medicine. There is the art of medicine as well, it's those grey areas that need some enlightenment. DVMt (talk) 19:33, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
Alexbrn, perhaps you'd like to tell us what happened the last time you went to the doctor for a bad cold? Did they check your weight? Take your blood pressure? Recommend any treatments? WhatamIdoing (talk) 21:14, 6 June 2014 (UTC)
Why on earth would I go to a doctor with a bad cold? I imagine (if I did) they'd tell me to rest up and take paracetamol for any aches & pains, and possibly tell me off slightly for coming to the surgery with a cold. No GP has ever taken my blood pressure and I have only been weighed once, around 20 years ago, as a matter of routine, when signing on for a new practice. The doctor said I was a bit overweight (she was right). Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 05:38, 7 June 2014 (UTC)
You go to the doctor with a bad cold to achieve three things that you can't easily achieve any other way: (a) to make sure that you don't have pneumonia, (b) to make sure that you don't have strep throat [assuming that you have a sore throat] and (c) to get a prescription for codeine, which actually is an effective cough suppressant.
If your GPs have failed to take your blood pressure during the last couple of decades, then they have, by that omission, failed to follow evidence-based medicine in treating you. There's pretty good evidence behind routine screening for blood pressure (just not necessarily in people with an acute illness). WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:50, 7 June 2014 (UTC)
Yes, so I wouldn't go to the doctor for a cold unless things were really bad.[17] On blood pressure, here in the UK, the NHS these days routinely invites people for this kind of routine screening every five years past the age of 40. For myself, I'm outside of that since I am in a comparatively more watchful regime overseen by my cancer nurse, which means I have had blood pressure readings taken before/after surgery. I am struggling to see what this interrogation of my medical experience has to do with whether or not we should be allowing charlatans to advocate their wares in Wikipedia via fringe journals. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 19:41, 7 June 2014 (UTC)
We are talking about whether there might be a difference between "conventional medicine" and "evidence-based medicine". It appears that there is: some conventional medicine is evidence-based, and some of it is not. In your opinion, is the non-evidence-based part of conventional medicine supported by "charlatans" publishing in "fringe journals"? WhatamIdoing (talk) 19:55, 7 June 2014 (UTC)
Even though you may not go to a GP for a minor cold Alex, it is common practice for many people to go to their physician for exactly that reason. There are certainly people who wait until things are "really bad" (sometimes too long as a matter of fact), but many don't and I think that's important to keep in mind. Though I see personal anecdotes coming into play here and it's nice to see everyone sharing their own subjective experience, the fact remains that it only represents your own experience and your own experience may not be representative of what happens on a population-based level. TylerDurden8823 (talk) 20:56, 7 June 2014 (UTC)
Alex, I don't see this as interrogation, but rather you sharing your personal experience. We're just asking you to clarify your position. You seem to have confused EBM is synonymous with conventional medicine. We've been using examples of how this is not the case, and these are legit cases of how things work in health care in general. Neuraxis (talk) 03:38, 8 June 2014 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── You're all tearing into a strawman. Obviously medicine at large has aspects other than applied science / EBM. But those are not altmed; altmed is when ineffective things are pushed as an alternative to effective treatment. Yes, in the course of a consultation family doctors may offer a friendly chat; and yes that is not necessarily EBM, but it is neither fringe nor altmed; if it became the "Talking Cure" & proponents claimed without evidence that it was effective for treating disease, then it would be fringe, sources would no doubt describe it as such as WP would duly frame it applying fringe guidance. (And no doubt we'd have Talking Cure therapists here on Wikipedia trying to fluff its article, just like we've got homeopaths/chiropractors/osteopaths today). Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 07:55, 8 June 2014 (UTC)

Alexbrn says, "altmed is when ineffective things are pushed as an alternative to effective treatment"
But that's exactly what my doctor above did, Alex: he told the patient to take a completely ineffective (but FDA-approved and strictly conventional) cough suppressant as an alternative to writing a prescription for one of the ones that actually works. Note that sentence: "the doctor recommends over-the-counter cough syrup, which is conventional but a clear violation of evidence-based medicine". It's a violation of EBM because dextromethorphan is utterly ineffective as a cough suppressant.
According to your personal definition, did that doc engage in altmed, or not? Or is the MD, despite doing exactly what you decry as "pushing an ineffective treatment as an alternative to effective treatment", still not engaging in altmed? WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:46, 8 June 2014 (UTC)
From what you're saying it sounds more like a recommendation made in ignorance rather than being "pushed as an alternative". I think I could usefully refine my definition by bringing out the "commitment to the cause" element ... Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 16:04, 8 June 2014 (UTC)
I doubt that it's ignorance; in most cases, I suspect that it's simply that the patient expects the doctor to prescribe some sort of medicine, and suggesting a spoonful of honey (which actually works/is evidence-based, at least for the tickle-in-the-back-of-your-throat sort) is not a socially acceptable prescription.
I think what would make more sense is to divide medicine up like this:
Treatments for a bad cough
Socially accepted Not accepted
Effective Codeine
(conventional and evidence-based)
Honey
(alternative but evidence-based)
Ineffective Cough syrup
(conventional but proven worthless)
Homeopathy
(alternative and proven worthless)
This reflects the significant role that social acceptance plays in determining whether something is "altmed" (or "complementary", as opposed to "just normal"). The things that society in general (not merely up-to-date experts) accepts as normal medical treatments are "conventional" medicine, regardless of whether they work. The things that society in general does not accept as normal medical treatments are "complementary or alternative medicine". Things that are effective (or not) are things that actually work (or not), regardless of whether or not they're accepted by society at the moment.
The "at the moment" matters a lot. If you go look up the history of some very old interventions, you'll find that they fall in an out of favor. Swaddling newborns in Western cultures is a good example of this: it was considered normal and effective until the early 19th century. Then it was a horrible imposition on the baby's free will and useless. And now it's widely accepted, promoted at hospitals all over the Western world, and known to be effective at promoting sleep, health and growth.
Swaddling went from conventional to alternative and back to conventional. What people believed about its efficacy changed over time. It actually remained effective the entire time. The fact that it's currently accepted makes it conventional. The fact that it works makes it evidence-based. The fact that there are people fanatically dedicated to promoting it (one doctor has written a book promoting it because he believes that swaddling will reduce the number of babies that are murdered by their parents) is neither here nor there. "Commitment to the cause" isn't obviously relevant; what matters is how society as a whole—the millions and millions of people who make up "society"—happen to categorize it. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:04, 8 June 2014 (UTC)
Interesting matrix - so the question would be how to the cells map onto altmed and/or "fringe". According to Wikipedia, altmed is "any practice that is put forward as having the healing effects of medicine but is not based on evidence gathered using the scientific method". This it seems is exclusively based on a definition from the (American) National Science Board. The NHS has a different take, saying "Treatments are sometimes used instead of conventional medicine, with the intention of treating or curing a health condition. The NCCAM says that use of treatments in this way can be called alternative medicine".[18] and helpfully also say "There is no universally agreed definition of complementary and alternative medicine". One thing I'm getting from this is that our Alternative medicine article needs some work! Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 10:53, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
So Alex, are you stating there is no evidence-based CAM? Neuraxis (talk) 13:14, 10 June 2014 (UTC)
No, he's saying that it's difficult to figure out what CAM actually is. It's not hard to go look up individual treatments or fields (just find a source and see whether it says "Foo is alternative"), but if you're looking for a wide definitions that covers everything, it's difficult. WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:12, 11 June 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────

To a first approximation (to a first approximation, the entire universe is made of Hydrogen), I'd divide up the matrix like this:

Treatments for a bad cough
Socially accepted Not accepted
Effective Codeine
(conventional and evidence-based)
Evidence-based medicine
Honey
(alternative but evidence-based)
Alternative medicine
Ineffective Cough syrup
(conventional but proven worthless)
Bad medicine
Homeopathy
(alternative and proven worthless)
FRINGE

Within this, it's necessary to recognize that I've drawn lines between them, but both of these measures exist on a continuum.

There may be almost enough public acceptance to consider a treatment normal medicine; chiropractic for acute back pain falls into that category. (In fact, the chiropractic industry may be stretching the altmed label beyond endurance in the US, because it's probably good for their income to maintain cash-based practices instead of having their patients expect them to do health insurance paperwork.) There are also altmed treatments that are far less accepted than homeopathy. One problem with "acceptance" is that it's going to vary by culture. (My thinking is that anything that is equal to, or less socially accepted than homeopathy, in whatever the main culture is, deserves full-scale FRINGE treatment, at least as far as the 'social' side is concerned.)

For evidence-based, there are treatments that are proven beyond any shadow of a doubt. There are treatments that are probably working, at least a little, but the next paper could change that. There are treatments that are probably useless, but the literature is divided; there are treatments that are proven worthless—we have gone past "different people disagree" to "even proponents think it's busted".

Complicating this item: There are treatments that are still completely experimental e.g., anything that belongs at Experimental cancer treatment, and there are treatments that apparently work, but have little clinical relevance. Imagine a diet pill that, if you took it every day for a year, caused a weight loss of just 10 grams a year: it's a "real" weight loss, so it "works", but who cares if you lose ten grams in a year? (My thinking is that anything that has reached the evidence-of-not-working state deserves full-scale FRINGE treatment, at least as far as the 'evidence' side is concerned.)

So this isn't really a bright-line, black-and-white matrix, but I think it might be a useful way of considering the difference between some different categories. Also worth mentioning is that the boxes aren't equal in size: there's far more in the "conventional and evidence-based" group than in the "alternative and evidence-based" group. WhatamIdoing (talk) 15:12, 11 June 2014 (UTC)

It looks reasonable; I suppose using different definitions the cells would be labelled differently, so by the National Science Board definition, cough syrup would be altmed too (which seems odd to me). And I'm not sure how "alternative" honey is: the NHS advises "The simplest and cheapest way to treat a short-term cough may be a homemade cough remedy containing honey and lemon".[19] But as you say, these lines are not clean divisions.
We can exempt ourselves from the difficulty of categorizing experimental treatments because it seems intent is a common component of definitions of alternative medicine, and experimental treatments aren't put forward as being cures (except by some notable quacks).
Another factor here is the basic science. As David Gorski is fond of pointing out, there is no point in considering evidence around Homeopathy because basic science tells us it cannot be effective. Homeopathy is an obvious case, but altmed offerings which have this pseudoscientific/non-scientific aspect can also get the fringe categorization from this avenue of thinking. Alexbrn talk|contribs|COI 08:10, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
Appealing to David Gorski's authority (logical fallacy) is really reaching down. Basic science sciences research is broader and this is a good resource [20] as to what it actually is. This 'intent' point you bring about is smoke and mirrors, for it is pure speculation and conjecture. Again, no one here is disputing homeopathy is one the fringe side. So, using this red herring example, yet again, isn't necessary. As WAID suggests, chiropractic does have scientific evidence in favour of comparable effectiveness for specific MSK conditions (low back pain being the most widely recognized). But, further, there are also basic sciences research allowing us to know the mechanism of action. This 2012 review [21] discusses how SMT results in plastic changes in the CNS that address aberrant sensorimotor integtation. Is this fringe and pseudoscience? Neuraxis (talk) 14:51, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
Why do you say that dextromethorphan is "alternative" in the UK? It's a "Pharmacy Only Medication" in the UK, which means that it's just as "alternative" as clotrimazole for athlete's foot or hydrocortisone for poison ivy. WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:52, 12 June 2014 (UTC)

Mentorship[edit]

Would have preferred to have asked privately, but I feel that I would benefit from having you as a WP mentor. You're a moderate like myself, and I respect you and the fact that you're a good listener. Hope you take my request into consideration. Regards, DVMt (talk) 16:27, 17 May 2014 (UTC)

I'm flattered by the request, but realistically, I can't commit the time to mentor anyone, and I wouldn't want to mislead you by even trying to. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:27, 17 May 2014 (UTC)
Not a problem. Thanks for the timely response! :) DVMt (talk) 00:19, 18 May 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-21[edit]

07:18, 19 May 2014 (UTC)

Causes of NHL[edit]

Regarding the discussion on PCBs and NHL: The statement as written is simply not factually true. The reason it is not true is that the cited papers are not "studies" or "original research" but merely reviews or summary papers which discuss actual studies done by others. Nor do they establish "cause." The cited summary papers by Kramer and Freeman were paid for by plaintiffs' counsel for purposes of this pending litigation are the only writings on the subject that use the word "cause." Epidemiologists writing the results of their research are generally not medical doctors and therefore do not report the statistical results of their studies in terms of "cause"; rather they report their results as statistical "associations." A true statement would be that some epidemiology studies show an association between PCB exposure and NHL, and others do not show such an association.

I am posting this on the NHL talk page. Furthermore, this comment has been reproduced on the talk page of editor [WhatAmIDoing/Edgar181], both of whom have been involved in this discussion. User:Glynn Young — Preceding undated comment added 15:36, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

I have replied at Talk:Non-Hodgkin lymphoma#New language for the Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma page. WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:24, 20 May 2014 (UTC)

VisualEditor newsletter—May 2014[edit]

VisualEditor-logo.svg

Did you know?

VisualEditor - Editing References - Cite Pulldown.png

The cite menu offers quick access to up to five citation templates.  If your wiki has enabled the "Cite" menu, press "Cite" and select the appropriate template from the menu.

Existing citations that use these templates can be edited either using the "Cite" tool or by selecting the reference and choosing the "Reference" item in the "Insert" menu.

Read the user guide for more information.

Since the last newsletter, the VisualEditor team has mostly worked on the new citation tool, improving performance, reducing technical debt, and other infrastructure needs.

The biggest change in the last few weeks is the new citation template menu, labeled "Cite". The new citation menu offers a locally configurable list of citation templates on the main toolbar. It adds or opens references using the simplified template dialog that was deployed last month. This tool is in addition to the "Reference" item in the "Insert" menu, and it is not displayed unless it has been configured for that wiki. To enable this tool on your wiki, see the instructions at VisualEditor/Citation tool.

Eventually, the VisualEditor team plans to add autofill features for these citations. When this long-awaited feature is created, you could add an ISBN, URL, DOI or other identifier to the citation tool, and VisualEditor would automatically fill in as much information for that source as possible. The concept drawings can be seen at mw:VisualEditor/Design/Reference Dialog, and your ideas about making referencing quick and easy are still wanted.

  • There is a new Beta Feature for setting content language and direction.  This allows editors who have opted in to use the "Language" tool in the "Insert" menu to add HTML span tags that label text with the language and as being left-to-right (LTR) or right-to-left (RTL), like this:  <span lang="en" dir="ltr">English</span>. This tool is most useful for pages whose text combines multiple languages with different directions, common on Right-to-Left wikis.
  • The tool for editing mathematics formulae in VisualEditor has been slightly updated and is now available to all users, as the "Formula" item in the "Insert" menu. It uses LaTeX like in the wikitext editor.
  • The layout of template dialogs has been changed, putting the label above the field.  Parameters are now called "fields", to avoid a technical term that many editors are unfamiliar with.
  • TemplateData has been expanded:  You can now add "suggested" parameters in TemplateData, and VisualEditor will display them in the template dialogs like required ones.  "Suggested" is recommended for parameters that are commonly used, but not actually required to make the template work.  There is also a new type for TemplateData parameters: wiki-file-name, for file names.  The template tool can now tell you if a parameter is marked as being obsolete.
  • Some templates that previously displayed strangely due to absolute CSS positioning hacks should now display correctly.
  • Several messages have changed: The notices shown when you save a page have been merged into those used in the wikitext editor, for consistency.  The message shown when you "Cancel" out of an edit is clearer. The beta dialog notice, which is shown the first time you open VisualEditor, will be hidden for logged-in users via a user preference rather than a cookie.  As a result of this change, the beta notice will show up one last time for all logged-in users on their next VisualEditor use after Thursday's upgrade.
  • Adding a category that is a redirect to another category prompts you to add the target category instead of the redirect.
  • In the "Media" dialog, it is no longer possible to set a redundant border for thumbnail and framed images.
  • There is a new Template Documentation Editor for TemplateData.  You can test it by editing a documentation subpage (not a template page) at Mediawiki.org: edit mw:Template:Sandbox/doc, and then click "Manage template documentation" above the wikitext edit box.  If your community would like to use this TemplateData editor at your project, please contact product manager James Forrester or file an enhancement request in Bugzilla.
  • There have been multiple small changes to the appearance:  External links are shown in the same light blue color as in MediaWiki.  This is a lighter shade of blue than the internal links.  The styling of the "Style text" (character formatting) drop-down menu has been synchronized with the recent font changes to the Vector skin.  VisualEditor dialogs, such as the "Save page" dialog, now use a "loading" animation of moving lines, rather than animated GIF images.  Other changes were made to the appearance upon opening a page in VisualEditor which should make the transition between reading and editing be smoother.
  • The developers merged in many minor fixes and improvements to MediaWiki interface integration (e.g., edit notices), and made VisualEditor handle Education Program pages better.
  • At the request of the community, VisualEditor has been deployed to Commons as an opt-in. It is currently available by default for 161 Wikipedia language editions and by opt-in through Beta Features at all others, as well as on several non-Wikipedia sites.

Looking ahead:  The toolbar from the PageTriage extension will no longer be visible inside VisualEditor. More buttons and icons will be accessible from the keyboard.  The "Keyboard shortcuts" link will be moved out of the "Page options" menu, into the "Help" menu. Support for upright image sizes (preferred for accessibility) and inline images is being developed. You will be able to see the Table of Contents while editing. Looking further out, the developers are also working on support for viewing and editing hidden HTML comments. VisualEditor will be available to all users on mobile devices and tablet computers. It will be possible to upload images to Commons from inside VisualEditor.

If you have questions or suggestions for future improvements, or if you encounter problems, please let everyone know by posting a note at mw:VisualEditor/Feedback or by joining the office hours on Thursday, 19 June 2014 at 10:00 UTC. If you'd like to get this newsletter on your own page (about once a month), please subscribe at w:en:Wikipedia:VisualEditor/Newsletter for English Wikipedia only or at meta:VisualEditor/Newsletter for any project. Thank you! Whatamidoing (WMF) 22:16, 21 May 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-22[edit]

08:29, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

DYK nomination of Sugar candy[edit]

Symbol question.svg Hello! Your submission of Sugar candy at the Did You Know nominations page has been reviewed, and some issues with it may need to be clarified. Please review the comment(s) underneath your nomination's entry and respond there as soon as possible. Thank you for contributing to Did You Know! Yoninah (talk) 23:30, 27 May 2014 (UTC)

Great mindless think alike[edit]

As the saying goes, great mindless think alike.

EEng (talk) 23:34, 28 May 2014 (UTC)

It is a highly variable process. People don't agree on what is really required; the only point of true agree is that they really want other people to quit telling them that they screwed up. And since those other people feel free to make up standards in their complaints, it is very hard for the DYK group to stick to their written standards. If they follow the standards, they get complaints from uninvolved editors; if they don't, they get complaints from nominators about making up rules as they go along (because they are making them up as they go along).
I usually don't think it's worth bothering with, and wouldn't have in this case, except that I'd recently seen yet another complaint about DYK "always" having the same boring types of articles (roughly, promotional articles and things that 99% of readers obviously won't care about, or, for extra credit, spammy, US-centric, self-promotional articles about obscure insects that almost nobody cares about—you know how complaints like that overstate the situation). So here's a general article on a subject that anyone can understand... and if it helps reduce their complaints, then great, but I probably won't bother with another DYK for a long time. I just don't care enough to mess with it. WhatamIdoing (talk) 23:55, 28 May 2014 (UTC)
I was mostly thinking about the mindless exclusion of list-material-that-could-be-run-into-text-if-you-really-insist (in your case) and explanatory-text-that-could-be-run-into-text-if-you-really-insist (in my case). Beyond that, my complaint about DYK is that it encourages (as I said somewhere) fake-finished slapdash articles (devoid of cite-needed or clarify-needed tags etc.).
Over and over I'm told (though nothing in the rules say this) that DYK articles are supposed to be 5 days old yet completely tag-free, which can only achieved in one of two ways: (1) by "accidentally" leaving out tags you know ought to be there; or (2) degrading the article by removing routine, uncontroversial and almost certainly sourceable which just for the moment lacks a RS.
Whereas FA should be WP's best work, DYK should be frankly works-in-progress i.e. the attitude should be, "Did you know [Fact F about Subject S]? -- if so, then you might have the knowledge and interest to improve this frankly incomplete article on Subject S! Click here to help!" That would make sense. Instead we present, linked from main page, article that confuse the novice about how WP content is developed, and disgust the knowledgeable with their insipid writing and abundant untagged problems. EEng (talk) 04:33, 29 May 2014 (UTC)
It's a problem, isn't it, EEng?
Do you remember ever running across the early "rules", which included an admonishment to "Always leave something undone" in articles? The idea was that it encouraged collaborators and especially that it gave new people an obvious place to start. I think it would be a good idea for DYK to resurrect. WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:51, 29 May 2014 (UTC)
In a "while" (days or weeks, depending) I'm going to be disputating this very issue at Template:Did_you_know_nominations/Jean_Berko_Gleason (where the reviewer thinks notability is the threshold for article content) and at Template:Did_you_know_nominations/Jack_and_Ed_Biddle (where the reviewer seems to want all kinds of minor clarify-needed resolved -- again, a main-page appearance will be the perfect time to attract someone who knows the answers and where sources might be). Perhaps you will keep an eye on them. EEng (talk) 10:52, 29 May 2014 (UTC) P.S. For the record [59]
I agree with you, but it's important to remember the pressures on the regulars there. If they do what you and I believe is right for this particular thing, then they get people of the "the Main Page should be perfect because it's an honor to appear there" persuasion yelling at them. An effective solution needs to provide them some insulation against this pressure. WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:40, 29 May 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-23[edit]

08:08, 2 June 2014 (UTC)

Comment[edit]

I'd like your feedback on this: "The burden of proof is in the lap of those who wish to present an idea. An idea is thus false until proven positive rather than the other way around." This statement seems to be illogical. How can something by default be automatically false and not neutral? Am I misunderstood? DVMt (talk) 23:58, 4 June 2014 (UTC)

Well... yes, the statement is false as written. (It is not neutral, either:  the truth value of the presented idea is unknown.)
But this statement also happens to be a nearly accurate description of how some parts of some scientific professions work. It's a good model for researchers (although technically, a new proposal is potentially false, not definitely false). It's a poor model for clinicians. For example, physicians who are committed to evidence-based medicine will say that unless and until there is good-quality evidence that parachutes reduce trauma in people who jump out of airplanes, then nobody should use a parachute. (If you haven't seen it before, then PMID 14684649 is a systematic review that finds no good-quality evidence that parachutes work.) If taken to an extreme, this can be very harmful. If taken with some common sense—or even with a desire to do something other than wring your hands, on the grounds that you hate to see someone suffering and the insufficiently studied but conventional treatment might work—then it's probably okay. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:11, 5 June 2014 (UTC)

Your input would be appreciated[edit]

Hi! This was opened up yesterday [73] and is directly related to this [74] ongoing discussion at your talk page. Your comments would be helpful regarding whether or MM for MSK is currently pseudoscientific and fringe. The policies contained therein might be in need of a bit of review and modernization that helps delineate the subject matter more succinctly. Neuraxis (talk) 19:58, 8 June 2014 (UTC)

Request for help with possibly copyrighted images[edit]

Hello WAID! I don't believe we've directly interacted before. It's always a pleasure to see you around and I don't believe I've every seen you say something that is not reasonable, grounded, and with a view to consensus in mind.

There's another user who posts an inordinate amount of dissection images of questionable value on Anatomy articles.

Many have a copyright tag viewable in the image: File:Slide3ddd.JPG

I worry these may be deleted en masse at some arbitrary future time, so I'm not particularly inclined to rename to more useful names when I see them, or add captions. I can't find anywhere to ask about this on commons and I find the environment both confusing and very unwelcoming. I was wondering where I can make this request? I'd like it clarified because I do believe these images have a useful place in commons, but it may be good to clarify this somewhere. I'm sure there is not a question about WP you couldn't answer, hence my request here! --LT910001 (talk) 00:16, 9 June 2014 (UTC)

Hi LT910001,
If it's really okay, then there should be a note on each and every single file description page with an OTRS case number, after they have have verified permission from the copyright holder (who really could be the uploader, but they're supposed to get the paperwork sorted). I'm guessing that most of these images are also published at http://www.anatomyumftm.com/ which has a note about the Wikimedian contributor's name—so I'd guess that it's probably okay. However, User:Moonriddengirl is the real expert on these things (and also one of the kindest Wikipedians ever), and she will know more about what to do than I. WhatamIdoing (talk) 04:22, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
Aw. :) I would agree with WhatamIdoing that the mention of the user is very helpful, and I see that the user has been around this block before (Commons:Commons:Deletion requests/All uploads by User:Anatomist90). So there has been OTRS communication. A clearer statement of license on that website would be very helpful, even if it were just a note saying "All images uploaded to commons by User:Anatomist90 licensed blahblah". But what I would do on transferring any of those images to Commons is note that the uploader is acknowledged and link to that deletion debate, with a note that OTRS confirmation of identity is indicated there. --Moonriddengirl (talk) 10:11, 9 June 2014 (UTC)
Thanks. From my understanding images under copyright that aren't licensed are deleted in commons. This happens at an arbitrary timepoint, and I was concerned that if I start editing these images my editing would be in vain as the image could thereafter be deleted anyway. So from what what you say about the OTRS ticket, I shouldn't worry about this. Thanks for your prompt reply, --LT910001 (talk) 03:26, 10 June 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-24[edit]

07:39, 9 June 2014 (UTC)

In re your reply above[edit]

Agreed, What, agreed. And understand, that you were not the one I was trying to re-direct, in terms of time and attitudes, above. Cheers, admire you, Le Prof Leprof 7272 (talk) 02:15, 13 June 2014 (UTC)

DYK nomination of Sugar candy[edit]

Symbol question.svg Hello! Your submission of Sugar candy at the Did You Know nominations page has been reviewed, and some issues with it may need to be clarified. Please review the comment(s) underneath your nomination's entry and respond there as soon as possible. Thank you for contributing to Did You Know! Storye book (talk) 13:54, 15 June 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-25[edit]

07:13, 16 June 2014 (UTC)

Cancer terminology[edit]

Hey WAID. I have literally spent the last few weeks trying to figure out cancer terminology. It makes ones head spin.

WHO more or less appears to use neoplasm and tumor interchangeably. This even applies to leukemia. Additionally I have been trying to update us to their 2008-2010 nomenclature. See discussion here [115] Best Doc James (talk · contribs · email) (if I write on your page reply on mine) 07:26, 19 June 2014 (UTC)

Your opinion on linking to wikias[edit]

Are you still supporting what you said few years back in place such as Wikipedia_talk:External_links/Archive_21#Wikias? --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 16:32, 21 June 2014 (UTC)

Yes, as a description of the community's practice, that is still true, except that ELN was created in the meantime, so problems should be reported there.
Personally, I've never been excited about a link to an open wiki, no matter how large and stable it is, so you can expect no more than tepid support from me in any particular dispute. I'm happy to correct errors in people's understanding of the guideline (e.g., someone wrongly saying that all links to all wikis are prohibited), but I haven't yet been unhappy to find a discussion close with consensus against a link to another wiki. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:05, 21 June 2014 (UTC)

AlexNewArtBot/MedicineSearchResult[edit]

Hiya. If you've currently got no solution for filtering the list for unpatrolled pages (like my old (crappy) script), would you like a rewrite? fredgandt 03:39, 22 June 2014 (UTC)

Hi Fred! It feels like it's been ages since I've seen you around.
No, I don't have a current solution, and I did really like what you had written. However, I've also not had time for tracking that page this year. If you want to write one, I'd be happy to test it for you, but I don't know how much daily use it might get in the near term, if I'm the only person interested (and I'd hate to have you go to the trouble of creating something that didn't get used as much as it deserves!). I think that User:Ironholds has been doing more page patrolling than I; maybe he would know who else might benefit from a way to do page patrolling by subject area? WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:21, 22 June 2014 (UTC)
Frankly it's kind of a pain to do :(. But in terms of usefulness, there have been some requests historically, but I don't recall them well enough to point them out, I'm afraid. Ironholds (talk) 21:21, 22 June 2014 (UTC)
Okies. I'll leave it on a back burner, but let you know when I get around to it (relatively soon since I'm in the mood). I think (honestly can't remember) I made it work on any AlexNewArtBot/*****SearchResult page, so other projects might also like an updated (working) version.
I appreciate your consideration of my time and effort :-)
"I'll be back" fredgandt 22:53, 22 June 2014 (UTC)
Pretty much done, but for what is no surprise to me - a slight error! :-/
However: it's much faster, and in theory more accurate (cough) or at least will be soon. Even in it's current state, it's not bad.
So you've no excuses now! Get back to patrolling!
Take care, and I'll see you again in another year or two ;-) fredgandt 20:56, 24 June 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-26[edit]

07:20, 23 June 2014 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Deletion is not clean up listed at Redirects for discussion[edit]

Information.svg

An editor has asked for a discussion to address the redirect Wikipedia:Deletion is not clean up. Since you had some involvement with the Wikipedia:Deletion is not clean up redirect, you might want to participate in the redirect discussion if you have not already done so. Launchballer 08:32, 24 June 2014 (UTC)

VisualEditor global newsletter—June 2014[edit]

VisualEditor-logo.svg
The character formatting menu

Did you know?

The character formatting menu, or "Style text" menu lets you set bold, italic, and other text styles. "Clear formatting" removes all text styles and removes links to other pages.

Do you think that clear formatting should remove links? Are there changes you would like to see for this menu? Share your opinion at MediaWiki.org.

The user guide has information about how to use VisualEditor.

The VisualEditor team is mostly working to fix bugs, improve performance, reduce technical debt, and other infrastructure needs. You can find on Mediawiki.org weekly updates detailing recent work.

  • They have moved the "Keyboard shortcuts" link out of the "Page options" menu, into the "Help" menu. Within dialog boxes, buttons are now more accessible (via the Tab key) from the keyboard.
  • You can now see the target of the link when you click on it, without having to open the inspector.
  • The team also expanded TemplateData: You can now add a parameter type  "date" for dates and times in the ISO 8601 format, and  "boolean" for values which are true or false. Also, templates that redirect to other templates (like {{citeweb}}{{cite web}}) now get the TemplateData of their target (bug 50964). You can test TemplateData by editing mw:Template:Sandbox/doc.
  • Category: and File: pages now display their contents correctly after saving an edit (bug 65349, bug 64239)
  • They have also improved reference editing: You should no longer be able to add empty citations with VisualEditor (bug 64715), as with references. When you edit a reference, you can now empty it and click the "use an existing reference" button to replace it with another reference instead. 
  • It is now possible to edit inline images with VisualEditor. Remember that inline images cannot display captions, so existing captions get removed. Many other bugs related to images were also fixed.
  • You can now add and edit {{DISPLAYTITLE}} and __DISAMBIG__ in the "Page options" menu, rounding out the full set of page options currently planned.
  • The tool to insert special characters is now wider and simpler.

Looking ahead[edit]

The VisualEditor team has posted a draft of their goals for the next fiscal year. You can read them and suggest changes on MediaWiki.org.

The team posts details about planned work on VisualEditor's roadmap. You will soon be able to drag-and-drop text as well as images. If you drag an image to a new place, it won't let you place it in the middle of a paragraph. All dialog boxes and windows will be simplified based on user testing and feedback. The VisualEditor team plans to add autofill features for citations. Your ideas about making referencing quick and easy are still wanted. Support for upright image sizes is being developed. The designers are also working on support for viewing and editing hidden HTML comments and adding rows and columns to tables.

Supporting your wiki[edit]

Please read VisualEditor/Citation tool for information on configuring the new citation template menu, labeled "Cite". This menu will not appear unless it has been configured on your wiki.

If you speak a language other than English, we need your help with translating the user guide. The guide is out of date or incomplete for many languages, and what's on your wiki may not be the most recent translation. Please contact me if you need help getting started with translation work on MediaWiki.org.

VisualEditor can be made available to most non-Wikipedia projects. If your community would like to test VisualEditor, please contact product manager James Forrester or file an enhancement request in Bugzilla.

Please share your questions, suggestions, or problems by posting a note at mw:VisualEditor/Feedback or by joining the office hours on Saturday, 19 July 2014 at 21:00 UTC (daytime for the Americas and Pacific Islands) or on Thursday, 14 August 2014 at 9:00 UTC (daytime for Europe, Middle East, Asia).

To change your subscription to this newsletter, please see the subscription pages on Meta or the English Wikipedia. Thank you! Whatamidoing (WMF) (talk) 04:59, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

Candy bar[edit]

Per your comment at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Food and drink – Snack bars, check out the new Candy bar article, and please feel free to expand it. Thanks! NorthAmerica1000 10:22, 25 June 2014 (UTC)

Further input still appreciated[edit]

At Wikipedia:External_links/Noticeboard#Honorverse_wikia. In particular, you were cited at Talk:Honorverse#Can_we_link_honorverse.wikia.com_from_external_links.3F and we still disagree there, even with regards to which position your comments support. Any help in breaking this deadlock would be appreciated, --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 12:27, 29 June 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-27[edit]

06:53, 30 June 2014 (UTC)

Tech News: 2014-28[edit]

07:07, 7 July 2014 (UTC)

DYK for Sugar candy[edit]

Gatoclass (talk) 02:58, 8 July 2014 (UTC)