Wikipedia:Neutral point of view/Noticeboard

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David Horowitz

Due to repeated uglifications of the lead of the David Horowitz article, I've added a Neutrality tag, and would like to see an administrator step in and deal with the "wolfpack" tactics of a small group of editors claiming their at-present numerical majority entitles them to violate the Wikipedia:Manual of Style with impunity.--Froglich (talk) 03:14, 27 March 2014 (UTC)

No one has claimed that the manual of style should be violated. There is disagreement over whether the material Froglich has removed in fact violates the manual, but that is a different matter entirely. Froglich seems intent on using "this violates the manual of style" as an excuse to remove or censor material that he dislikes. The David Horowitz article is not the only place where he is using such tactics. FreeKnowledgeCreator (talk) 03:25, 27 March 2014 (UTC)
This is perilously close to WP:POINT. There is no neutrality issue, the dispute is a trivial one of normal editorial judgment over the way certain barely-notable groups are characterised. Guy (Help!) 09:18, 4 April 2014 (UTC)
The dispute was not trivial; style rules (being rules, their violation should be definition not be trivial) were being blatantly and flagrantly violated by a clique which manifestly did not care for them. -- If Wikipedia isn't going to enforce its own guidelines, then it should remove them and abandon all pretense of being a real encyclopedia rather than a YouTube comment thread. Or at least give editors like me some idea of which articles fall into the varying "We absolutely care about presentation here!" and "Myeh; this one can look like shit!" categories.--Froglich (talk) 00:23, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
Further point: The style violations involved were so obvious that any non-derelict (or complicit) admin ought to have immediately jumped in to punish the guilty. While I do not always find myself on the consensus side of things in contentious articles, I have been reliably informed that the MoS was arrived at via consensus; and so my position here should in fact enjoy the broader support even though the aforementioned wolf-pack presently controls the "barely notable" David Horowath.--Froglich (talk) 00:35, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

Signature in the Cell

Could I get some help here. This book, Signature in the Cell, clearly advocates a certain view. Writing a synopsis of the book is allowed for in WP:SOAP, since it is an WP article about a book advocating for a religious/scientific/political position, not simply a WP article advocating said position. An edit war commenced on said issue, with myself contributing to the Talk:Signature in the Cell page, and the other editors not contributing much at all. Was the main points section, found here, not written from a NPOV? Best, Purefury182 (talk) 18:05, 6 April 2014 (UTC)

I think that material is almost completely OK. It just needs a few modifications. I've restored it, hopefully in an improved form. FreeKnowledgeCreator (talk) 19:51, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Are Ken Ham's views "incorrect"?

Ken Ham is a Young Earth creationist. In the lead of his article it is currently stated that his views are "incorrect". There has been an extensive argument at Talk:Ken Ham as to whether this is an appropriate form of words. Both sides claim to be suppporting NPOV, but only one of them is right. New eyes on this might help. SamuelTheGhost (talk) 12:01, 7 April 2014 (UTC)

When in doubt, always move towards "Wikipedia aims to describe disputes, but not engage in them." (WP:YESPOV). If correct/incorrect is disputed, use the words like disputed, questioned, etc. and describe the arguments from both sides. The view that you need to choose one or the other description sounds to me like limiting possible solutions. Yiba (talk | contribs) 04:48, 9 April 2014 (UTC)
That's pretty ridiculous. "Young earth creationism" is not merely disputed -- it's wrong (i.e., falsified by scientific research). The idea that there are competing viewpoints here is absurd -- at least if we're writing an encyclopaedia. Nomoskedasticity (talk) 16:51, 9 April 2014 (UTC)
Ham's view on the age of the Earth is incorrect. The question is how we convey his incorrectness respectfully but without engaging in false equivalency. MastCell Talk 19:09, 9 April 2014 (UTC)

The problem is that his views are clearly based on religious views of the literal inerrancy of the Bible -- thus we are in a quandary, as if we assert everyone who holds such a belief is "incorrect" we are verging into the "religion" v. "science" category. IIRC, the community has decided that where religion is concerned, calling a belief "incorrect" is problematic. We might as well add "incorrect" to anyone who does not know the "one true religion" whichever one it might be. We can say his views on creationism are not in concord with "scientific consensus" but "incorrect" in Wikipedia's voice could be applied to essentially every single person who avers a religious belief, including Pope Francis. We could do so, but so far the community appears to believe that conservative writing of BLPs per WP:BLP is policy. Collect (talk) 12:45, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

It is a simple matter to describe such views as "based on an interpretation of the Bible that has been falsified by scientific evidence" without actually saying "incorrect".NewsAndEventsGuy (talk) 13:03, 12 April 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, but they are just massively, grotesquely incorrect, as far as science goes. This is the only NPOV thing to say -you don't get much more NPOV than facts. I am ashamed of seeing editors who think we have to walk on eggshells to say the blatant truth.--cyclopiaspeak! 13:06, 12 April 2014 (UTC)
He can have his religious based beliefs. That does not mean that we need to treat wildly incorrect claims as anything other than incorrect. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 13:10, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

Of course young earth views are incorrect. But we can write informative articles without using every possible opportunity to kick sand in the face of people who follow various faith-based beliefs. There is no need (or legitimacy) for the wikipedia editors to, in the voice of Wikipedia, make an overall pronouncement regarding incorrectness vs. correctness of his views in covering this person in this article. North8000 (talk) 13:25, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

To write that they are "incorrect" is not "to kick sand in the face", it is a bland, neutral statement of fact. --cyclopiaspeak! 16:37, 12 April 2014 (UTC)
  • I think the current version, boldly posted by QTxVi4bEMRbrNqOorWBV four days ago, is fine. It complies with MastCell's desideratum to "convey [the] incorrectness respectfully but without engaging in false equivalency" and it doesn't kick sand in anybody's face. Bishonen | talk 13:40, 12 April 2014 (UTC).
Better, but still not neutral. I think Ham would deny that his 6000 years is contradicted by fossils and rocks. He would say that mainstream scientists have interpreted those rocks to be millions or billions of years old, while he has another interpretations based on the Bible. Considering that he readily admits that he disagrees with mainstream scientists, I see no reason to directly imply that he is incorrect. Just describe what he says, and it will be obvious that he is pursuing a fringe theory. For an example, see how PBS describes him without directly saying that he is incorrect or contradicted by the evidence. [1] Roger (talk) 21:10, 12 April 2014 (UTC)

The article on Young Earth creationism calls it "pseudoscience," which is mostly the same as calling it incorrect. Howunusual (talk) 21:57, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Good. HiLo48 (talk) 22:14, 14 April 2014 (UTC)
It is good if you are pushing that point of view. Roger (talk) 02:47, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
It's not a point of view. It's fact. Young Earth Creationism simply IS pseudo-science. Wikipedia cannot present it as anything else. HiLo48 (talk) 02:58, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
More importantly: A significant number of reliable sources agree that it is pseudo-science, and no significant number of reliable sources dispute this description, which means that by WP:NPOV we are supposed to describe it as such. --Atethnekos (DiscussionContributions) 03:05, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
You cannot even find a significant number of reliable sources agree what pseudo-science means. It would be much better to replace the name-calling with an objective statement. As it is, the article just read as if it were edited by people who do not like Ken Ham. Roger (talk) 19:28, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
Sure, there's no consensus on what "pseudo-science" means in every detail, but that's never been a condition for using a term. Naturally, as a converse, there's no consensus on many details as to what "science" means either. That doesn't prevent us from describing things as science. This is true for a huge swath of important categories: "life", "language", "existence", "colour", "cause", "consciousness". We describe things as living, things as languages, things as existing etc. even though the experts on defining these categories are not in complete agreement. --Atethnekos (DiscussionContributions) 20:10, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Jason Russell

Talk:Jason Russell has a current RfC dealing with how to treat his famed "incident." This was proceeding apace until a new editor states that it is violating NPOV to say he was in his underwear when "The article should properly describe what happened or, if it's not deemed relevant for inclusion, remain silent about it; but you can't have it both ways and write the section in that way, pretending that Russell never exposed his genitals in public." Note the RfC appears, IMO, to be strongly leading towards minimal coverage of the incident, using conservative wording. Which is fine, but that editor now pasted a POV tag on that section, despite the fact I cannot see any particular direct relevance of WP:NPOV myself to what is clearly a WP:BLP dispute. But since the tag is in place, it seems fitting to present the claim here.

Is a description choice among "naked and masturbating", "naked" "nude" or "in his underwear" (where the police report and a number of reliable sources state "underwear") a matter appropriate for this noticeboard as being one of violating the neutral point of view policy by using the most conservative reliably sourced description, where more "interesting" wording is preferred by some editors? Thanks. Collect (talk) 16:24, 9 April 2014 (UTC)

As the editor who started the content dispute with my bold edit, I want to clarify that my concern was not with mentioning the underwear, but with the fact that the sources stated that he was removing the underwear,[2] a part which was omitted, and which changes the narration of the events; misrepresenting what was reported in the references by selectively quoting them is what I deem a neutrality problem. In your enumeration of options, you actually left out the one I favor in the current situation: having no description at all. If your concern is one of minimal coverage with conservative wording in order to protect the BLP's subject, what's wrong with simply removing any mention to his dress status as I suggested but you reverted? Diego (talk) 12:00, 13 April 2014 (UTC)
No -- my problem was your edit war and walls of text -- there is now a strong consensus that your position fails. You achieved 4RR on 13 April, and should be glad you were not reported at WP:ANEW. Cheers. Collect (talk) 12:26, 13 April 2014 (UTC)

Kvenland - King of Kvenland

Resolved

This was resolved with the blocking of the person posting the notice. Blue Rasberry (talk) 14:14, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Recent move of Accession of Crimea to the Russian Federation into Annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation

Moved to non-neutral title (but I admit, that past title was seemingly non-neutral too) without consensus. Seryo93 (talk) 05:38, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Still in favour of "joining". You can willingly join your friends at a bar, or unwillingly join your friends in The Slime Pit. Businessmen join boards, but so do carpenters. InedibleHulk (talk) 09:39, April 14, 2014 (UTC)

Adithya Srinivasan

It seems to me that a bunch of IPs are turning Adithya Srinivasan into a puff piece. I've been trying to deal with it for a long time, but the IPs keep restoring the peacock material and removing the POV tag. Lately, I've been getting this kind of stuff over it. Can someone else take a look at this? Jackmcbarn (talk) 12:02, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Jackmcbarn There are a lot of IP addresses in India. I am watching the article now too. Thanks for posting here. Blue Rasberry (talk) 14:13, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

Category:Organizations designated as hate groups by the SPLC

Is a category like this a violation of the WP:NPOV or WP:UNDUE-rule? I think it is a "the view of a significant minority," but maybe the SPLC's view is an "significant viewpoint," and in that case,, this category that calls organisations a "hate group" is no violation. See also the discussion at Wikipedia:Categories for discussion/Log/2014 April 12. Best regards,Jeff5102 (talk) 13:19, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

The SPLC is widely recognised as a reliable academic source:

In addition, the SPLC works with the FBI: 'The FBI has partnered with the SPLC "to establish rapport, share information, address concerns, and cooperate in solving problems"' As long as the article of the hate group contains a citation of the specific claim by the SPLC that the group is a hate group, I can't see how the category itself violates WP:NPOV because we are not endorsing the SPLC's view - we are simply reporting it. LordFixit (talk) 23:09, 14 April 2014 (UTC)

IIRC, the FBI specifically has no on-going relationship with that organization, and there is considerable controversy as to defining any politically active groups as "hate groups" where the main issue has been disagreement with the SPLC itself or its own political positions. For example, any group opposed to same sex marriage is automatically included as a "hate group" even though it is decidedly a political and religious position, and not "hate" in the traditional sense at all. The SPLC is a well-known organization, but it does not have the gravitas now that it may have once had. Cheers. Collect (talk) 00:01, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
The SPLC does not automatically list groups that oppose same-sex marriage. Otherwise every Church and the every part of the GOP would be listed, which they are not. Please provide a source for that claim. Secondly, your personal view is that the SPLC is no longer credible. But that is your view and not supported by reliable academic sources. LordFixit (talk) 03:51, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
But the "anti-same-sex-marriage" is used as one criterion: WaPo: [7] The Southern Poverty Law Center this week labeled as "hate groups" several political and religious organizations that campaign against same-sex marriage and, the center says, engage in "repeated, groundless name-calling" against gays and lesbians. , HuffPo [8] The petition blasts Benedict for "hateful language and discriminatory remarks" and for implying "that gay families are sub-human." The petition says that as a result of those remarks, the Roman Catholic Church "fits the definition of a hate group as defined by both the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League.", so the facts are fairly clear that the SPLC does count the marriage issue in making its little list. SPLC [9] (Hatewatch In an amicus brief filed yesterday in federal court in Michigan, the Traditionalist Youth Network (TYN) –– a student organization concerned with promoting white identity –– has taken up the mantle of defending the “sanctity of marriage” against “Culture distorters” who seek to reject “originalism quite appears to link the marriage issue to "hate". In fact the "Hatewatch" aspect of SPLC appears to regularly include groups who oppose marriage equality. Whether or not they engage in actual hate speech. [10] Anti-LGBT bigotry also can lead to horrible hate crimes appears to link the Boy Scouts indirectly to "hate crimes". Sorry -- the SPLC appears to be a primarily political organization, which uses "marriage equality" as one criterion for linking groups to "hate speech" and "hate crimes." Cheers. Its opinion is clearly citable as opinion, but making its claims in Wikipedia's voice as "fact" is unwise. Collect (talk) 13:03, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
Exactly. The criteria for categories are different than those for lists. I think the list is fine and should be further developed, and certainly if not UNDUE such claims can be put into the text of the relevant articles, but using the category system to "tag" all such organizations based on the views of a single organization violates the core aspect of categorization which is that these things should be WP:DEFINING, and they should not be controversial. Indeed, we don't even categorize people or organizations that are racist or homophobic, that was rejected by the community in 2011 and many times since. Simply put, categories are the wrong way to capture this information - categories are for navigation and should not be as contentious as this one clearly is.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 14:09, 15 April 2014 (UTC)


It's not yet time for you to ring down the curtain on the SPLC as expert on hate groups. First, they do not "automatically" put anti-gay marriage groups into the hate category—the group must practice the demonizing of homosexuals, the spread of falsehoods on the topic, or appeal to fear. The SPLC continues to be respected by scholars, if not by a few individual Wikipedia editors. Binksternet (talk) 00:28, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
Very good points. Some editors seem to be unaware of the SPLC's academic respect and criteria for listing. LordFixit (talk) 03:51, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
This is like a category for "List of politicians ridiculed by Rush Limbaugh". Roger (talk) 00:55, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Comment: Unfortunately, category (and template) abuse has become one of the holes in current process of curating content. When POV pushers cannot get their content into the main body of the article, they often turn to these less monitored alternatives to present their own agenda. In this case, that agenda appears to be that of agrandizing the SLPC's rather controversial labeling of various organizations with the moniker of "hate group". More general and essential categories apply, and where multiple sources support the categorization, those categories can be applied. Allowing the SLPC alone to label organziations on wikipedia doesn't adhere to the guidelines set out in WP:CATEGORY or WP:NPOV. aprock (talk) 01:32, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

I am pretty shocked by your allegations of bad faith. I am not a POV-pusher. You claim 'When POV pushers cannot get their content into the main body of the article, they often turn to these less monitored alternatives to present their own agenda.' - what a shocking load of rubbish. The allegation by the SPLC that any group is a hate group is listed widely in articles of hate groups, and for any page to be in this category, the article should contain the claim as well. I will be considering raising your comments about me and other editors at the appropriate forums. LordFixit (talk) 03:51, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
You might consider responding to the NPOV issues I raised about the category here, and any behavioral issues on WP:ANI. aprock (talk) 04:14, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
You didn't raise any 'issues' - you simply made false and hysterical allegations that I and others have acted in bad faith through 'less monitored alternatives' LordFixit (talk) 04:19, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Comment: I just saw there is also a Category:Worst Picture Golden Raspberry Award winners. I might be violating WP:OTHERSTUFFEXISTS here, but since that category is also about a negative expert opinion, it touches the same vein, according to me. See what you can do with that info, boys and girlsJeff5102 (talk) 07:41, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Good point. As I said before, the category does not endorse the SPLC listing, it purely reports that a reliable academic source has made such a designation. LordFixit (talk) 07:59, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
@Jeff5102, If you find the category improper, you should file a Category for deletion report. From there policy, guidelines and community consensus will determine how to handle the category. aprock (talk) 14:40, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
I prefer to do it the other way. I first want to know if the category violates any rule. If so, then I should consider if it should (not) be deleted. And therefore, I would have the case investigated over here first. Regards, Jeff5102 (talk) 15:20, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Comment: The general threshold for categorization is not just V and NPOV; it is also that the article subject (or at least one thereof) has the defining characteristics embodied by the category. To qualify as defining, a characteristic will usually be established in the article lead section (if it's the lead sentence, so much the better), with the implication of significance to the article that this brings. See CAT and OCAT for more discussion on defining characteristics. If a significant number of articles have the defining characteristics embodied by a category, then the category is warranted. If there are fewer such articles, then categorisation to a less-specific set of characteristics may be appropriate. HTH, Aquegg (talk) 08:24, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

  • Comment I take your point, but this category relates to inclusion in a verifiable list. There is always going to be an exact number of articles that will fit into this category - we can't add more and we should not remove some because we disagree with the organisation compiling the list. Dougweller (talk) 09:58, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
    • I wasn't trying to make a point per se, just to remind folk of the nature the category system at a high level. If this particular category doesn't seem to quite fit with that, then leaving it as a list may be the best option.—Aquegg (talk) 10:28, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
  • comment this is a hotly debated case, so more input is always useful - all those who haven't yet weighed in at CFD could you please do so? Thanks, --Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 12:45, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

UK Independence Party

Please see the discussion at Talk:UK Independence Party#Request for comment about whether academic sources describing the UK Independence Party as far-right are reliable. LordFixit (talk) 07:19, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

Why is this at NPOV? We don't discuss reliability here. Dougweller (talk) 09:52, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
Because one editor has claimed the sources are biased against UKIP and I am seeking any editors with interest in the matter LordFixit (talk) 10:46, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
Actually because the actual academic sources do not support the "neutrally worded RfC" which ain't. Read the RfC and note the NYT position that the use of "far right" is used by "harsher critics" and it is clear that when one only cites the "harsher critics" one might not be wording an RfC in a neutral manner as prescribed. In fact the NYT compares the UKIP's rise to that of Labour in the 1920s, and the Questia searches [11] "right wing" and not "far right wing" used in academic sources with regard to the UKIP. Cheers. Collect (talk) 14:05, 15 April 2014 (UTC)

links to slurs on Scotch-Irish American

I recently removed links to derogatory terms on the page [Scotch-Irish_American]. However, a user Eastcote keeps restoring them and now appears tobe doing the same via a sockpuppet BilCat. As other articles on ethnic commmunities do NOT link to derogatory terms, these should be removed in order to keep the article more neutral. Duedemagistris (talk) 18:48, 16 April 2014 (UTC)

Is it pov to say that China was the most technologically advanced civilization until the 19th century?

Until yesterday History of science and technology in China said "Ancient Chinese scientists, mathematicians and doctors made significant advances in science, technology, mathematics, and astronomy. Traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture and herbal medicine were also developed through empirical observation and scientific experimentation.[citation needed]"

It now says "For over 9,000 years until the 18th century China was the worlds most technologically advanced civilization. Ancient Chinese scientists, engineers, metallurgists, mathematicians and medical doctors made significant innovative advances in science, technology, mathematics, and astronomy. Traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture and herbal medicine were also developed through empirical observation and scientific experimentation.[citation needed]"

I reverted this but was reverted again with the edit summary "Please refer to Science and Civilisation in China by Sir Joseph Needham and read this: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/6669569.stm". That's in my response to saying that writing developed in the Middle East, which I believe is still consensus even if early pictographs which may be the origins of Chinese writing existed before writing. Of course both statements are unsourced.

We actually don't talk about Chinese civilization being anywhere near 9000 years old. Look at Chinese history and for instance Longshan culture. The written history of China only goes back to the Shang Dynasty and the development of cities in China seems to have started later than elsewhere. I'm not trying to denigrate their wonderful achievements but this claim is not correct. I also reverted [12] based on a book by Gavin Menzies.

While I'm at it, is there a decision on PRC/ROC that would be relevant to this template change?[13] Thanks Dougweller (talk) 05:47, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

The whole concept of civilizations "advancing" and time "moving forward" are POV, in my books. How do you objectively measure something like technological progress? And can we measure every other civilization, the same way, at the same time? If not, we can't compare them. So on this particular issue, I prefer the old way. InedibleHulk (talk) 06:00, April 18, 2014 (UTC)
This is the sort of crap that gets stuck into History Channel fluff but obviously cannot be justified in a serious encyclopedia. Revert away. Mangoe (talk) 13:03, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
Note your headline says "until the 19th century?" but the quote below says "until the 18th century" - a very different matter, though still a very arguable claim. One might start the clock, if one wanted to play that game, at around 1500 BC, but anything before is rather silly. Needham, though very distinguished, is also notoriously boosterish of Chinese science. But the whole issue is best avoided, & replaced with something vaguer, perhaps stressing the continuity of Chinese civilization. Johnbod (talk) 13:46, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
It's pov unless it can be directly attributed to a reliable source, and then it should be represented that way.Scoobydunk (talk) 15:20, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

Vladimir Putin

Can we get a few eyes over at Vladimir Putin - we have some undue weight in re-guards to the current Intervention in Crimean Peninsula. Not sure what is there is the norm for a bio - odd to go into so much detail about the conflict in a bio. What do others think ? -- Moxy (talk) 17:31, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

Current affairs tend to get excess coverage, I suppose, but the case at hand is getting very substantial news coverage, with Putin in the dead centre. So it is natural that we cover the Crimean issue with some weight. Collect (talk) 19:29, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

Article "Jews and communism"

We could definitely use some neutral editors at the terrible mess that is the article Jews and Communism, take a look at its talk page, there is rampant edit-warring, what I would say is obvious original research from the very first sentence, highly suspect POV-pushing, ownership issues, on and on it goes, if anybody feels that they can bring a NPOV to a whole series of disputes between two very entrenched "sides" and dares to wade in over there that might be helpful. There are so many issues that I don't feel I can single a particular one out and provide diffs.Smeat75 (talk) 19:50, 18 April 2014 (UTC)

Political positions of Hillary Rodham Clinton

Appears on its face not quite to conform to WP:NPOV. I asked about this at its talk page and was told it was no more hagiographic than Political positions of Sarah Palin which I then looked at. I seem to discern a difference on how the two people are treated. This is "silly season" but I also doubt that articles should be campaign documents either (sigh). I avoid editing in this type of morass where people insist that NPOV does not apply here but trust that other eyes will look at this political tract of an article. Cheers. Collect (talk) 15:20, 20 April 2014 (UTC)

Attribution issue at Ethiopia - do we need to say "known to scientists"?

I'm trying to get my head around some reversions by User:Til Eulenspiegel at Ethiopia. A sentence that read "Ethiopia is one of the oldest locations of human life known to scientists" was changed by User:Jérôme to "The oldest known traces of human life are known from Ethiopia". Til reverted this saying it needed attribution (ie it had to say "known to scientists", it was restored, then reverted again by Til. I reworded it to say ""Some of the oldest evidence for modern humans is found in Ethiopia" which is better as we the source is about homo sapiens, and then I was reverted by Til whose edit summary says "Uh oh, seems Doug Weller prefers to flare this into a dispute, says "attribution isn't necessary" for what European regime-paid scientists say, published views of Ethiopian scholars he deems irrelevant but theirs is the more prominent voice in that nation").

My question is do we actually need this "known to scientists" in situations like this one? If we do, we may need to look at another article. Note also that of course the lead is a summary of the article, and the relevant section in the article just says "Ethiopia is widely considered the site of the emergence of anatomically modern humans, Homo sapiens sapiens, in the Middle Paleolithic 200,000 years ago. The earliest known modern human bones were found in Southwestern Ethiopia, and are known as the Omo remains.[39] Additionally, skeletal remains of Homo sapiens idaltu were found at a site in the Middle Awash in Ethiopia. Dated to around 160,000 years ago, they may represent an extinct subspecies of Homo sapiens sapiens, or the immediate ancestors of anatomically modern humans." Nothing about "known to scientists" there, so it's unclear to me why Til thinks it is necessary in the lead. Dougweller (talk) 13:01, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

The fact that you and Jerome seem to want to get a "decision" on this from anywhere BUT Talk:Ethiopia does not bode well... Til Eulenspiegel /talk/ 13:11, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
Hi Til; I do not mind having this discussion on page page or another – I'm more interested in discussing the actual issue. But please feel free to give your arguments in the article talk page. Cheers –Jérôme (talk) 13:17, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

From my point of view, phrases such as "known to scientists" and "known to science" are weasel words – they attribute a fact to unnamed scientists, but do not give a precise reference. It would be much better to simply provide a reference in such cases, which then would make the phrase "known to science" redundant. What is more, everything in Wikipedia is supposed to be referenced, so adding "known to scientists" does not add anything to a sentence in Wikipedia, because Wikipedia as a whole should reflect facts that are known to science. Also, the particular phrase "known to scientists" is reminiscent of unscientific texts, such as those written in tabloids; this is definitely not the tone that an encyclopedia should have. –Jérôme (talk) 13:17, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

That is about as half baked as everything else I have seen from you. If you are not willing to discuss this with other contributors of the article at Talk:Ethiopia per standard procedure, I have nothing else to say here. Til Eulenspiegel /talk/ 13:19, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
This is not an issue specific to this article, it's a general question as I've made clear above. :I've reported Til to AN3 now -as he chose to revert rather than wait for the outcome of the discussion here. Dougweller (talk) 13:22, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
He won't be back for two weeks, but I would very much like to continue the discussion. Dougweller (talk) 13:58, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
Forgot to note that at the moment it is Til's version that is in the article and it is not actually a summary of what the article says. Dougweller (talk) 14:02, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

To wrap my head around this, I took a look at the Earth article. If we added "according to scientists" or "known to science" to every relevant fact there, it would make the article unreadable. Attribution like this should be done on a case-by-case basis with a reason specifically applicable to the case being provided. --NeilN talk to me 14:21, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

Twenty days late -- "known" is pretty clear as a single word -- "to scientists" implies that some non-scientists know something else. They don't. This is worth not a lot of discussion IMO. Collect (talk) 14:53, 21 April 2014 (UTC)

Succinctly put. I think we can close this. Til is blocked for good reason. Guy (Help!) 17:29, 21 April 2014 (UTC)
Agree with Collect, "known" should be sufficient here. The policy relevant here might be WP:ATTRIBUTEPOV. If there are no indications that there would be a significant divergence of views represented in the best sources on the subject, then I don't see a need to attribute. If there exist local beliefs, they can of course be presented in the article too, in a suitable way. --Dailycare (talk) 18:38, 22 April 2014 (UTC)

Gun Control

Is this edit in conformance with the WP:NPOV policy?

[14]

changing

In the United States, some gun owners say the right of private gun ownership is a check against [[tyranny]].<ref>[http://books.google.com/books?id=AYBLAAAAMAAJ&q=%22gun+control%22+%22check+against+tyranny%22&dq=%22gun+control%22+%22check+against+tyranny%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=_tJWU-u8POis2QXZw4CQDA&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAQ The Issue of gun control, Volume 53] H.W. Wilson, 1981; 192 pages; page 43</ref> Such a position has a long history in [[gun politics in the United States]], and has been noted in some other countries.''
U.S. gun-rights advocates [[Stephen Halbrook]] and [[Wayne LaPierre]] believe that [[Nazi gun control]], and gun laws in other [[authoritarianism|authoritarian regimes]], were a form of [[tyrant|tyranny]] that contributed significantly to past genocides.{{sfn|Halbrook|2000|p=484}}{{sfn|LaPierre|1994|p=88-87,167-168}} This hypothesis is not supported by mainstream scholarship.{{sfn|Bryant|2012b|p=412}}{{sfn|Bryant|2012b|p=414}}{{sfn|Harcourt|2004|pp=671,677}}{{sfn|Spitzer|2004|p=728}}''

to

Some U.S. gun owners agree with what gun-rights advocates [[Stephen Halbrook]] wrote: that the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution "reflects a universal and historical power of the people in a republic to resist [[tyrant|tyranny]]."{{sfn|Halbrook|2000|p=484}} Halbrook, [[Wayne LaPierre]], and their supporters believe that [[Nazi gun control]], and gun laws in other [[authoritarianism|authoritarian regimes]], were a form of tyranny that contributed significantly to past genocides.{{sfn|Halbrook|2000|p=484}}{{sfn|LaPierre|1994|p=88-87,167-168}} This hypothesis is not supported by mainstream scholarship.{{sfn|Bryant|2012b|p=412}}{{sfn|Bryant|2012b|p=414}}{{sfn|Harcourt|2004|pp=671,677}}{{sfn|Spitzer|2004|p=728}}''

Removing a reliable source for the first sentence as originally stated. The Issue of gun control, Volume 53] H.W. Wilson, 1981; 192 pages; page 43 and only retaining the problematic Halbrook and LaPierre sources. By so doing, they remove an actual academic source (H.. W. Wilson is a reputable publisher) in favour of two non-academic sources which are then demolished in succeeding sentences. I suggest that removing an unquestioned reliable source source about a "non-Godwinian" point of view and asserting by inference that all are invoking Hitler, that NPOV is clearly violated. Other views? Thanks. Collect (talk) 22:11, 22 April 2014 (UTC)