Wikipedia:Reliable sources/Noticeboard

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Welcome to the reliable sources noticeboard. This page is for posting questions regarding whether particular sources are reliable in context.
Before posting, please be sure to include the following information, if available:
  • Source. The book or web page being used as the source. For a book, include the author, title, publisher, page number, etc. For an online source, please include links. For example: [].
  • Article. The Wikipedia article(s) in which the source is being used. For example: [[Article name]].
  • Content. The exact statement(s) in the article that the source supports. Please supply a diff, or put the content inside block quotes. For example: <blockquote>text</blockquote>. Many sources are reliable for statement "X," but unreliable for statement "Y".
While we attempt to offer a second opinion, and the consensus of several editors can generally be relied upon, answers are not official policy.
Please focus your attention on the reliability of a source. This is not the place to discuss other issues, such as editor conduct. Please see dispute resolution for issues other than reliability.
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Current large scale clean-up efforts[edit]

Large scale clean-ups/[edit]

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Large scale clean-ups/[edit]

Large scale clean-ups/[edit]

User RealDealBillMcNeal removing tabloids without discussion[edit]

Special:Contributions/RealDealBillMcNeal has been removing tabloids. Is this acceptable behaviour or not? Walter Görlitz (talk)

It depends on why he has been removing them. Have you tried contacting him on his talk page and asking why? Blueboar (talk) 22:42, 5 July 2014 (UTC)
This is not the first time he has done that. Other editors had taken issue with him and raised it at his talk page before. User had been removing references without consensus that they are not reliable sources and based solely on his personal opinion. At the same time, he has failed to replace them with another 'reliable source' and has left text uncited. LRD NO (talk) 00:58, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Bleacher Report is self-published clickbait, started off as a rumour-filled clickbait website in India, Daily Mail, Daily Mirror, The Sun, The Star are tabloids who have long-existing reputations for making shite up, because, you know, that's what tabloids do. Not based on personal opinion, but on the opinions of many, many other people for years and years. Jesus wept, you're acting as though I've shat in your cornflakes. RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 01:25, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
As mentioned previously, there is no concensus on them being unreliable sources despite you editing based on claiming that they are opinions of many, many other people for years and years. Newspapers in tabloid format should not be confused with carrying the stigma of being 'tabloid/unreliable'. I would also like to remind you to be WP:CIVIL and avoid further edits until this is resolved. LRD NO (talk) 01:46, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Here you go mate. RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 01:51, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Is that wikipedia article meant to support your claim that all those references you have removed are not reliable sources? That's not how wikipedia works. If you want to have a blanket removal of those sources based on unreliability, you need to get concensus on them. So far there are none. LRD NO (talk) 02:02, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Erm, no, I'm telling you what tabloid newspapers are, cause you seemingly don't have a clue. How can you even take part in a debate about reliable sources if you don't know basic terms for newspapers? RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 02:17, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
I know what the term is and I don't think it affects my participation in this discussion, thank you very much. As a basic point of WP:RS, you should know that concensus is required for blanket removal of any sources. LRD NO (talk) 02:34, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
(edit conflict) RealDealBillMcNeal's talk page is proof of the number of editors and admins he's run afoul of with his unilateral purges. (Me being one of them.) To that end, his obvious behavior issues ought to be discussed at WP:ANI, not here. As far as sources go, I'm under the impression that Bleacher Report and Daily Mail are reliable sources. I'd support an RfC to determine consensus on these sources. Chris Troutman (talk) 01:58, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Agree that we might need to raise this over at WP:ANI instead. LRD NO (talk) 02:06, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Maybe we should discuss your use of personal attacks there too pal. "Behaviour issues" give me a fucking break. RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 02:25, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Well, if we demanded company be polite you'd have been shown the door some time ago, Mr. McNeal. Drmies (talk) 02:41, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
...and you are...? What is that adding to the debate? You're dead funny you mate. Do you get paid for that wit? No. I'm so surprised. RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 02:58, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
This is not the first time you have done this in all fairness and various editors had raised this with you previously. Those edits have been showed to be of a rather personal nature as evidence by this edit too. WP:ANI might be a more appropriate place considering the recurrent nature of this issue. LRD NO (talk) 02:44, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Pure waffle that LRD. It's funny how you don't point to the hundreds upon hundreds of useful edits I've made, and instead focus on the few incorrect ones. It's almost like you have an agenda. Her, how about all you's decide to educate me with your superior intellect in this matter rather than ganging up and abusing me, eh? If you have an issue, at least have the decency to tell me and talk to me rather than threatening me with AFI or whatever on earth it is. RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 02:58, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
That's because various editors have found issues only with certain edits you did. Nobody is being subjective here. They have raised their concerns and you have failed to answer them and continue on your one-sided edits though. Don't get personal and focus on the issue at hand. LRD NO (talk) 03:09, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
I would suggest you do not continue with further edits until an outcome has been achieved here. LRD NO (talk) 02:48, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
This is a bit concerning - is the editor even trying to find sources for the sources removed? We are going to need much more of an effort then just blanking the refs. -- 02:59, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Dunno mate maybe you try asking me? Maybe I could get more than 15 seconds to do so before my edits are reverted and then I don't know where I'm at? Maybe I'll just leave the shite sources there. The Sun. Ha. Good work guys. RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 03:03, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
I have not seen you replace those sources with an alternative source. LRD NO (talk) 03:10, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Yeah I can't be arsed with this, it's really boring. This debate is over. You guys win. The Sun and The Star are amazing sources and can stay forever! RealDealBillMcNeal (talk) 03:05, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Mate, that's a pretty childish response. It's a serious matter, and you could take it seriously. Drmies (talk) 03:10, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
A bit of a road bump with removing the bad sources....I agree with ealDealBillMcNeal the sources are not all that good. But I think the main concern here is that the source (bad or not) is not being replaced with anything. Thus leaving a statement that is unsource. Very easy to fix.... just need a bit more effort in replacing the sources - if non can be found then the content should also be removed. -- Moxy (talk) 03:23, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
I didn't realize RealDealBillMcNeal was still doing these removals. Sort of a I Don't Like It so it must go approach. As was explained to him back in May by multiple editors, they are not great sources... sort of crosses between blog and magazine, but they are generally regarded as minimally reliable. Some of the reporter/editors are paid on those staffs, and isn't Bleacher Report owned by Sports Illustrated now? Anyway there will always be some disagreement as to their source value, but he simply can't remove the sources without adding new sources. Most editors I've run across seem to think they make the cut as far a wiki-worthiness but if at all possible replace them or augment them with other sources. Is it possible to add {{fact}} to sentences with less than perfect sources? One thing, we can't have him continue to remove and leave the unsourced sentence. That was explained clearly to him. Can we get a simple promise from him that he will remove no more of these sources? Then he can do all his "useful" editing and everyone can go back to their normal patterns of editing without the need of the ugliness ANI's seem to bring out in everyone. Fyunck(click) (talk) 06:23, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
If he can commit to such a promise, sure it would be great for everyone involved. History has shown that he tends to skirt the issue and shows an inability to partake in sensible discussion, staying away then continuing with those edits some time down the line though. LRD NO (talk) 15:16, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
To second some of the above comments, if removing an unreliable source, please replace it with a reliable source or a {{Citation needed}} tag. I also noted the above editor removing a reference to a Spanish language television show (link) from the Cristiano Ronaldo article. I'm not sure how a Canal+ documentary is an unreliable source? --Muchness (talk) 06:37, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Tabloids are rs. However, they are not the best sources and news covered only in the tabloid press generally lacks weight for inclusion. So the sources should be left in place or replaced with better sources. TFD (talk) 07:07, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Sorry, no, that first sentence is much to strong a statement. Some tabloids can be used for some uncontroversial facts (say, the day of the week, or the year of publication). But when considering the the biological state of starlets, the sightings of Nessie in an UFO, and the latest wondercraze diet and herbal cancer treatment, we get far beyond reliable very fast. These papers must be used, if at all, with extreme caution. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 11:39, 6 July 2014 (UTC)

For matters of ascertainable fact, the tabloid format does not indicate unusability of recognized newspapers. For matters of "gossip" even the New York Times is fully fallible. Alas, some view papers with the "wrong political views" as being somehow less "reliable" on that basis alone - which is not a criterion recognized by Wikipedia policy. The iterated claims that such papers cannot be used on Wikipedia are not in accord with the policies in place. Perhaps someone will suggest "only sources which are always right may be used" but that would winnow down the pool of sources to nil. Collect (talk) 13:29, 6 July 2014 (UTC)

Just to clear up potential confusion: I'm talking about Tabloid journalism, not Tabloid (newspaper format). The first is a style of journalism that typically values sensationalism over fact checking. The second is the physical size of the paper, which indeed has no bearing on reliability. Historically, tabloid journalism, which by definition is of questionable value as a reliable source, and tabloid paper size went hand in hand, but nowadays, many reliable papers (examples given in our article are The Independent and The Times) are printed in tabloid size, but don't feature tabloid journalism. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 14:41, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
Precisely, tabloids are WP:QUESTIONABLE sources.--Ubikwit 連絡 見学/迷惑 15:20, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
We have to judge the reliability of news outlets on a story by story basis ... because the same paper can contain trashy tabloid journalism and reliable news coverage. Take, for example, the New York Post (one of the tabloid format papers that gave "Tabloid Journalism" its name) ... the Post contains a lot of tabloid journalism (sensationalized hyped up reporting, etc)... yet it has also has won multiple Pulitzer prizes for its journalism. It would be wrong to completely discount the Post as a reliable source.
Ok... I have no problem with saying that a paper like the National Enquirer is usually unreliable... but even that tabloid sometimes contains serious journalism (it was seriously considered for a Pulitzer for its reports on the John Edwards/Rielle Hunter story). When it comes to news outlets, we simply can not say "always reliable/unreliable"... The best we can do is say "usually reliable/unreliable" and look deeper to see if a particular report is one of the exceptions or not. Blueboar (talk) 16:15, 6 July 2014 (UTC)
I think there is a real danger here of confusing "reliable" and "right". The National Enquirer may contain tidbits of good journalism, but it does not do so reliably. The NYT contains some errors, but they are rare and usually corrected. --Stephan Schulz (talk) 16:29, 6 July 2014 (UTC)

I had a look at some of the recent edits and they are good cleanup, removing celebrity tittle-tattle. Bill, please bear in mind that the Daily Mail and the Daily Mirror, even The Sun may be reliable for sports coverage. On articles related to football (soccer), WikiProject Football would be able to advise. Itsmejudith (talk) 08:49, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

The term tabloid has little meaning nowadays in the UK. Most people in the UK differentiate between The Sun (red top), The Daily Mail (middle market), and The Times (top end newspaper), even though they are all tabloid format. In terms of style, only The Sun can be considered tabloid in style. Hzh (talk) 09:48, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
With seemingly no resolution nor commitment by the user not to engage in such edits in future, this issue is now opened at WP:ANI. Thank you. LRD NO (talk) 06:32, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

NRA PAC contributions to Congressional candidates[edit]

So every can understand the context, this section is from the National Rifle Association article... --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 17:16, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Are the sources attached to this text reliable?

In 2012, 88 percent of Republicans and 11 percent of Democrats in Congress had received an NRA PAC contribution at some point in their career. Of the members of the Congress that convened in 2013, 51 percent received funding from the NRA PAC within their political careers, and 47 percent received NRA money in their most recent race.[1][2][3]
  1. ^ Drutman, Lee (2012-12-18). "NRA’s allegiances reach deep into Congress". Sunlight Foundation. 
  2. ^ Joseph, Cameron (2012-12-20). "Half of Congress have received NRA donations". The Hill (blog). Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  3. ^ Cizzilla, Chris (2012-12-20). "Where the NRA is spending its money in Congress". Washington Post (blog). Retrieved 2014-06-06. 

--Lightbreather (talk) 16:46, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

On what basis is the "sunlight foundation" presumed "reliable"? It appears to be an organization with strong political views, and a more usual secondary reliable source would be highly preferred. "The Hill" blog claim simply reflects the Sunlight Foundation claim, and the WaPo blog also ascribes the material to that single source. The most one could use is
"According to the Sunlight Foundation, the NRA gave money to roughly half of current Congressional Representatives at some point."
Much more would place UNDUE stress on what is a single actual source. To add the "88%" bit would ideally have a secondary source independently make the claim - we do not generally use single sources for multiple claims AFAICT. Cheers. Collect (talk) 17:32, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
RE: the reliabilty of the Sunlight Foundation and Lee Drutman:
  • The Sunlight Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan congressional watchdog group with 4 out of 4 stars on Charity Navigator.[1] It is cited by: ABC News,[2], CBS News,[3] NBCNews,[4] FOX News,[5] The New York Times,[6] the Wall Street Journal,[7] and the Washington Post[8] - to name just a few. Its data and analysis is used by the left and the right.
  • "Lee Drutman is a Senior Fellow at the Sunlight Foundation. He holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of California, Berkeley and a B.A. from Brown University. He has been quoted by NPR, ABC News, The Colbert Report, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Politico, The Hill, Roll Call, among many other news outlets. Drutman has also worked as a research fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution, a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute, an American Political Science Association fellow in the office of Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), and a staff writer at the Philadelphia Inquirer. His writing has been published in the Los Angeles Times, Slate, Politico, the American Prospect, and Pacific Standard."[9]
So, unless you have some reliable sources that say the Sunlight Foundation is unreliable, I don't know how Wikipedia can claim it is. Lightbreather (talk) 20:25, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
The Sunlight Foundation is a suitably reliable source for this material on the basis of the above. Even if one were to choose to disregard it, however, other reliable secondary sources make the same point (for example, see "How the NRA exerts influence over Congress", Washington Post). There are no policy-based grounds for excluding this material, and it's particularly disingenuous to imply, as Collect does, that NRA cash is equally distributed by party when reliable sources take pains to make clear that the opposite is true. MastCell Talk 21:52, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
In case you missed it -- it is reliable for its opinions stated as opinions - just like all non-partisan political organizations. Collect (talk) 22:04, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
I'll assume that "it" refers to the Sunlight Foundation. In which case, I think we agree. Of course, since a separate reliable secondary non-opinion source (the Washington Post special report) makes the same point, we can present the facts about NRA campaign contributions as, well... facts. MastCell Talk 23:14, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
That would be true if and only if the WaPo had a separate source -- but quoting a source does not make it into two separate sources as far as I can tell. Collect (talk) 23:18, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
The Sunlight Foundation has a certain political bias much like the Washington Times (see below), and without the gravitas of an award winning journalist backing it up, such a statement cannot be reliable, even when quoted by other sources which are reliable. They have carefully cited their source rather than simply stating it as a fact. Therefore they are relying on the Sunlight Foundation, which is something they may be able to get away with, but we cannot. The entire proposed edit is unreliably sourced. Reliable 1too (talk) 23:57, 8 July 2014 (UTC) Struck post from block-evading sockpuppet
I'm not a big NRA fan, but am having difficulty figuring out how this particular statistic would fit into an NPOV article even if it were from a reliable source and not a political advocacy group. The only reason I can imagine one would include this information in an article would be to imply massive and inappropriate NRA influence on Congress. That may or may not be true, but this statistic doesn't establish that, as it counts anyone who has every been handed a $5 check as part of funding a million dollar campaign. It has an air of innuendo about it. Formerly 98 (talk) 02:10, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
I don't necessarily agree, but on the other hand it is trivially easy to find sources describing the NRA's pattern of political contributions. If this particular source is problematic in the view of other editors, it may be easiest to substitute other sources describing what is, after all, a fairly uncontroversial fact. For instance, Politifact noted that "In terms of campaign contributions, the NRA sends its money almost entirely to Republicans." Again, until now I wouldn't have even found this statement controversial, but it's easy enough to source. MastCell Talk 10:22, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

Up at the top of this page it says:

  • The guideline that most directly relates to whether a given source is reliable is Identifying reliable sources.
  • The policy that most directly relates is: Verifiability.
  • If your question is about whether material constitutes original research, please use the No original research notice board.
  • If your question is about undue weight, or other neutral point of view issues please use the NPOV noticeboard.

The last two don't apply, so I'm going to focus on the other two. The WP:V policy says there are three types of sources: publisher, creator (writer), and type of work. Mainstream newspapers are included among reliable sources. Many respected mainstream news organizations use the Sunlight Foundation as a source. Under WP:RS, it says about news organizations: "One signal that a news organization engages in fact-checking and has a reputation for accuracy is the publication of corrections." The Sunlight Foundation, The Hill, and the Washington Post publish corrections. Although the sources I gave include some (very little) opinion, they mostly present factual information - numbers - researched by someone (as I shared above) who holds a PhD in poli-sci and has worked as a research fellow at several institutions. In other words, the Sunlight Foundation and Lee Drutman are absolutely WP:V, WP:RS. So what this basically boils down to is, do you think there is some error in the factual information given; or rather, do you have equally reliable sources who says there is an error with the information given? Again, absent that, there is no question of reliability. Lightbreather (talk) 14:54, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

It is not our duty to find contradictory sources. It is your obligation to prove reliability under either WP:SCHOLARSHIP with peer review, or WP:NEWSORG with ediitorial fact-checking. I notice that below, MastCell excoriated me based on Emily Miller's prior service on the staff of Sen. Tom DeLay (R-TX). When I said her "credentials are impeccable," I was referring to her prior service at ABC News and NBC News, and her Mollenhoff Award for investigative journalism. Here, LightBreather refers to Drutman's prior service on the staff of Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ). No prior service at a respected news organization. No award for investigative journalism. MastCell allows that to stand, however.
Please make up your mind whether prior servive on a senator's staff makes a writer more likely, or less likely to be reliable. Right now it appears that is determined by whether the senator is a Republican or a Democrat. Reliable 1too (talk) 15:25, 9 July 2014 (UTC) Struck post by block-evading sockpuppet
Here is exactly what I said about Drutman: "[he] holds a PhD in poli-sci and has worked as a research fellow at several institutions." And about the Sunlight Foundation? That it publishes corrections and is used as a source by many respected mainstream newspapers. So, again, we're back to whether or not the particular work cited has factual errors, as the Wikipedia article gives only facts from that source - not opinions. Lightbreather (talk) 20:50, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
So long as we attribute it, I see no problem with using the Sunlight Foundation as a source. We're starting to go off on tangents. Dougweller (talk) 15:37, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
Since it's factual information from a reliable source, I disagree. However, if it will help to resolve the problem, I would be open to giving Dutman's opinion on what that information means: "It is important to note that these contributions are probably a better measure of allegiance than of influence." I could give that quote, or tightly paraphrase it, and attribute it to Dutman. Lightbreather (talk) 20:58, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
I'd like to comment that the second and third sources are based on the first and their use of the material does not make it any more accurate, it simply reinforces the editorial point they are trying to make. The statistics quoted by the Sunlight Foundation are the work of, so its that website and organization's reliability and credibility we should be discussing. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 20:21, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
See above, about this particular citation. I will start another discussion about OpenSecrets. Lightbreather (talk) 20:50, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
It's not necessary, its part of this discussion hence why I mentioned it. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 21:21, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
I believe it is necessary, because I have two problems using OpenSecrets as a source. The first is that this particular statement/source combo (above) has been challenged. The second is that, some months ago, OpenSecrets was challenged in the Gun control in the U.S. article. So the question in the new discussion below is about OpenSecrets in general. Many respectable, mainstream news sources - left, right, and neutral - use it, but there are some WP editors who seem to think its unreliable. I'd like to settle the matter, if possible, so I don't have to defend every use of what others see as a reliable source. Lightbreather (talk) 00:55, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Yes check.svg DoneDeleted two of the three sources [10] and added/attributed source's opinion about what the factual information cited means.[11] Lightbreather (talk) 17:26, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

If the primary source material that the cited articles are based upon is questionable, then is lessens the credibility of the entire chain of research. Regardless of what consensus is regarding Sunlight, its still questionable material because its based on data, plain and simple. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 17:29, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Remind me again why you believe that data from OpenSecrets is "questionable"? It looks to me like a number of highly reputable sources, such as the Washington Post, view OpenSecrets as credible and rely upon their data. MastCell Talk 23:08, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

NRA influence of Senate confirmations[edit]

So every can understand the context, this section is from the National Rifle Association article... --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 17:17, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Are the sources given with this text reliable?

First was President George W. Bush's choice, Michael J. Sullivan, whose confirmation was held up in 2008 by three Republican Senators who said the ATF was hostile to gun dealers. One of the Senators was Larry Craig, who was an NRA board member during his years in the Senate.[1] ... Some Senators resisted confirming another Obama nominee, B. Todd Jones, because of the NRA's opposition,[2] until 2013, when the NRA said it was neutral on Jones' nomination and that it would not include the confirmation vote in its grading system.[3] This allowed Democrats and even some Republicans from pro-gun states to vote for Jones without worrying about political fallout.[4]
  1. ^ Horwitz, Sari; Grimaldi, James V. (2010-10-26). "ATF's oversight limited in face of gun lobby". Washington Post. Retrieved 2014-06-10. 
  2. ^ Serrano, Richard A. (2013-07-11). "ATF nominee faces obstacles to confirmation". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2014-06-09. 
  3. ^ Horwitz, Sari (2013-07-31). "Senate confirms ATF director". Washington Post. Retrieved 2014-06-10. 
  4. ^ Freedman, Dan (2013-07-30). "Acting ATF director Todd Jones appears headed for confirmation". San Francisco Chronicle (Hearst Communications). Retrieved 2014-06-10. 

--Lightbreather (talk) 16:52, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

All looks fine except using Wikipedia's voice to iterate what is an opinion of Dab Freedman in the SFGate blog. It should be stated as his specific opinion, and not placed in Wikipedia's voice as empirical fact. Collect (talk) 17:37, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
I think if the last sentence of the proposed edit is removed, the one ending with "political fallout," it would be fine. That sentence is based on an opinion and the source of the opinion is not identified, nor does he seem particularly notable even if he were identified. Reliable 1too (talk) 23:54, 8 July 2014 (UTC)Struck post from block-evading sockpuppet
DAN Freedman, the author of the fourth article, is not a credential-less blogger or cub reporter. He is the National editor for Hearst Newspapers' Washington D.C. bureau. Lightbreather (talk) 01:09, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
You presumably came here to ask for opinions from other editors - if you did not intend to note their opinions, but simply came here to have your own opinions ratified, you came to the wrong place. That a person is a journalist does not mean he does not express opinions, and that is simply a fact of life. Another editor here seems to believe that if a writer has expressed opinions in any venue that therefore their fact reportage ought not be used -- which is the precise opposite of your position here. As a rule, if something appears to be an opinion, the best practice is to cite it as such. Cheers. Collect (talk) 01:51, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
You appear to be making assumptions about why I came here and what I would do or not do with others' opinions. I already incorporated the "attribute" opinion a couple of hours ago by prefacing the statement in question with "According to Dan Freedman, national editor for Hearst Newspapers' Washington D.C. bureau." My comment above, which was for Reliable - not you - was to tell him who Freedman is, since he didn't seem to know. Rather than presuming, I'll just ask outright: Am I your colleague and equal on Wikipedia, or something else? Lightbreather (talk) 03:28, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Added attribution.[12] Lightbreather (talk) 17:31, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

NRA influence on Surgeon General confirmation[edit]

So every can understand the context, this section is from the National Rifle Association article... --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 17:22, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Yes, and here is a link to the discussion on that article's talk page about the content in question: Deletion multiple times of Senate confirmation info. Lightbreather (talk) 17:40, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Are the sources given with this text reliable?

In 2014, Obama weighed the idea of delaying a vote on his nominee for Surgeon General, Vivek Murthy, because of opposition from the NRA.[1] In February, the NRA wrote to Senate leaders Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell to say that it "strongly opposes" Murthy's confirmation, and told The Washington Times' Emily Miller that it would score the vote in its PAC grading system. "The NRA decision," wrote Miller, "will undoubtedly make vulnerable Democrats up for reelection in the midterms reconsider voting party line on this nominee."[2] The Wall Street Journal reported on March 15, "Crossing the NRA to support Dr. Murthy could be a liability for some of the Democrats running for re-election this year in conservative-leaning states."[3]
  1. ^ Viser, Matt; Bierman, Noah (2014-03-15). "Surgeon general nominee runs into Senate resistance". Boston Globe (Boston Globe Media Partners). Retrieved 2014-06-109. 
  2. ^ Miller, Emily (2014-02-28). "NRA to score Senate vote on Obama’s nominee for surgeon general, Vivek Murthy". Washington Times. 
  3. ^ Peterson, Kristina; Nelson, Colleen McCain; Dooren, Jennifer Corbett (2014-03-15). "Some Democrats Balk at Confirming Obama's Surgeon General Pick". Wall Street Journal (Dow Jones & Company). Retrieved 2014-06-10. 

--Lightbreather (talk) 16:54, 8 July 2014 (UTC)

The first claim is clearly "opinion" which should be ascribed to those presenting it - I found no source having Obama state that this was what he "weighed" and so it is better to ascribe opinions as opinions. Collect (talk) 17:40, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
What? The first sentence is sourced to a news piece—not an opinion piece. The source states that Obama considered delaying Murthy's nomination because of the NRA. So we state that. (An opinion piece would be, say, the New England Journal of Medicine editorial expressing incredulity that the NRA should have veto power over a Surgeon General appointment). The sources seem appropriate for the material, with the possible exception of the Washington Times, which has a pretty spotty reputation for journalistic quality. MastCell Talk 21:42, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
And ascribing the delay to a specific reason is, absent an official statement from Obama, speculation and opinion. "John doe ate three hot doqs" would be a statement of empirical fact. "He stopped because he did not like the mustard" is opinion absent a statement from Doe that he did not like the mustard. Do you see the difference between an empirical fact and a speculative opinion? Collect (talk) 23:22, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
I understand that distinction, but do not see it in play here. The source states unambiguously that "opposition from the National Rifle Association... has forced Obama in recent days to reevaluate his strategy and consider delaying a vote on Murthy". As usual I am left to wonder why you're working so hard to obscure the source's content. MastCell Talk 23:30, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
I do my damndest to be consistent in the use of the English language, and I fail to see any value in your comment above regarding me personally. Do you have a reason for making such personal asides? Cheers. Collect (talk) 01:46, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
Looks fine to me, even the Washington Times. MastCell should not confuse WT columnists, which are usually at the heart of WT flaps with the staff writers.Two kinds of pork (talk) 22:00, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
I don't think I'm confused about the Times... although I am confused by your last sentence, which doesn't quite make sense to me but is probably not worth pursuing here. MastCell Talk 23:27, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
I'm fairly certain you know the difference between a staff writer and a columnist, but just in case you don't, staff writers report the news & perform investigative journalism for their constituents. Columnists produce opinion. The former group is held to a much higher level of standards than their talking-head colleagues with respect to verification. While the Times definitely has a political lean to the right, and their columnists have generated controversy, their news reporting does not have a "spotty reputation" according to the Columbia Journalism Review. Most attacks on the integrity of the WT usually boil down to sophistry.Two kinds of pork (talk) 02:44, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
As a general rule, I have some hesitancy about using the Washington Times as a reliable source but Emily Miller's credentials are impeccable. Looks good to me. Reliable 1too (talk) 23:52, 8 July 2014 (UTC)Struck post from block-evading sockpuppet
You mean the Emily Miller who handled PR for Tom DeLay, then did a stint as an online tabloid-gossip columnist in the wake of the Abramoff scandal, and now writes books with titles like "Emily Gets Her Gun... But Obama Wants to Take Yours"? Yup. Impeccable hard-news credentials. Remind me whether she's a staff writer or a columnist? Her title at the Times is Opinion Editor, which would seem to place her in the unreliable "columnist" camp according to Two kinds of pork. MastCell Talk 10:13, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
Sophistry at its finest.Two kinds of pork (talk) 13:39, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
Agreed. I repeat my observation from two sections up. Apparently a brief period of service for a Republican senator destroys a writer's reliability, negating years of work at ABC News and NBC New, and an award for investigative journalism. Reliable 1too (talk) 23:02, 9 July 2014 (UTC)Struck post from block-evading sockpuppet
Not really, but when someone authors a polemical screed about how Obama's coming to take away your guns, then I think it's fair to be skeptical about presenting her as an objective journalist on the issue of gun control. And my question to |Two kinds of pork was a serious one: since you've insisted on a significant distinction between staff writers and opinion columnists at the Times, where do you believe Emily Miller—the Opinion page editor—falls on this dichotomy? MastCell Talk 23:34, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
My original point was that the WT opinion staff have generated most of the controversy, and that is mostly due to displaying highly partisan opinions. That should really be no surprise, as opinion writers tend to be opinionated. This is no different from Maureen Dowd or George Will, both of whom IIRC have been involved with multiple flaps from creative editing to poor fact checking. Like the NYT and WashPost, the opinion writers at the WT have less editorial oversight than their newsroom brethren that are held to higher standards. Now does Miller have "newsroom" bona fides? While the award for "investigative journalism" is possibly impressive, I'd say no, she doesn't. She doesn't appear to have studied journalism, nor has she appeared to have worked in a traditional newsroom. However the source at hand clearly indicates her column is opinion, and the wiki article attributes her opinion. Considering her background in firearm issues, I see no problem with the text as stated by OP that the NRA would "score the vote" nor her analysis that vulnerable Democrats would "reconsider voting party line". This isn't an extraordinary statement nor analysis, and her opinion certainly appears to be noteworthy.Two kinds of pork (talk) 03:36, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
Upon further review, I'm going to retract my statement and change to "yes" being she is the genuine article. Her production work at ABC alone is enough to establish her credentials. That doesn't negate the fact that the article in question is clearly labeled opinion, and I see no reason to not attribute this opinion to her.Two kinds of pork (talk) 06:06, 11 July 2014 (UTC)
I agree with MastCell that the Viser-Bierman piece in the Globe is a news piece. It says "opposition from the National Rifle Association that has forced Obama in recent days to reevaluate his strategy and consider delaying a vote on Murthy," and more detail is given on that eight paragraphs later: "A senior White House official told the Globe on Saturday that the president’s team was readjusting its strategy...." and the two paragraphs after that. Lightbreather (talk) 01:33, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
And, FWIW, I included the Times and WSJ articles to show that the NRA's influence over this confirmation was acknowledged by conservative papers, too. I think one would be hard-pressed to find any major newspaper denying the influence that the NRA has had over this. Lightbreather (talk) 01:37, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

What is the point or purpose of stating and stating and restating that actions of Senator would be graded by the NRA in the same section over and over again? --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 17:58, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

I disagree that the article states and states and restates ... over and over again. I will discuss it on the article talk page if you start a discussion there, since this discussion is about the reliability of the sources given up-top. Lightbreather (talk) 18:09, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Institute of Noetic Sciences and a source weakly connected with it[edit]

There's been much controversy and conflict over IONS and Hastings' book named as "With the tongues of men and angels: a study of channeling". Although the bibliographic info of the book -below- clearly indicates that, the connection with IONS is weak and the publisher was not IONS, @QTxVi4bEMRbrNqOorWBV: & @LuckyLouie: insists otherwise and obstruct -by edit warring- the addition of this source into The Law of One (Ra material) repetitively, claiming that it is not a reliable source.
To me, if even the connection were strong, we can not reject a source just because it was published by or has some connections with IONS; because the context is new age and spiritualism, not a physics theory.
Title = With the tongues of men and angels: a study of channeling (Henry Rolfs book series of the Institute of Noetic Sciences)
Author = Arthur Hastings
Publisher = Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1991
Original from = the University of Michigan
Digitized = 3 Oct 2008
Length = 232 pages
Inputs from some other users might help resolving this matter. Logos5557 (talk) 23:53, 8 July 2014 (UTC)
Arthur Hastings works for IONS. IONS is not a book publisher, so that they're not the publisher is not exactly relevant. Ian.thomson (talk) 00:10, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
It was published by Holt, Rinehart and Winston and the author taught at Stanford and other universities. According to the reviews, it describes what various authors such as Edgar Cayce wrote. So it seems rs. The fact that the author has a distinct viewpoint is not relevant. It would be helpful though if you presented a specific instance where it is used as a source. TFD (talk) 00:37, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
It was used in the article as a reference to, the "harvest" concept's being one of the most controversial themes in the series, with the following statement exactly: "Being one of the most controversial themes in the series,...". Although, the reference is not so strong (due to the limited visibility in google books), it would proove that the "harvest" phenomenon is one of the themes that was discussed extensively in secondary sources. Logos5557 (talk) 08:26, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
The Hastings source isn't accessible to read on the web, so it's unclear if the described "controversy" (among fellow channelers? among Law of One believers? among society in general?) is even accurate. The best sources to use to write about WP:FRINGE subjects (someone going into a trance and being taken over by a being from another planet is certainly fringe) are independent sources. Otherwise, how can we write an objective article using material by an author who themselves is trying to convince the reader of the reality of the supernatural concept? If you want a source that covers "the harvest", we have an existing source ("Gnosis" magazine article) that already does so. At the moment, there's a local consensus that the Gnosis source, while not ideal, is sufficiently objective to include. - LuckyLouie (talk) 14:24, 9 July 2014 (UTC)


The allergy to Hastings, his book and IONS is not specific to the "controversy" issue; as can be seen in article's history, citation to Hastings book was removed more than once [13], [14]. We should trust the academic people's way of doing things; they are not ordinary "layman", they know how to handle "information" and "data" and they know scientific method. The judgement of "Hastings' being an author who himself is trying to convince the reader of the reality of the supernatural concept" can be countered by the transcript of this conversation between Mishlove and Hastings, where Hastings was not totaly trying to convince but also critical of channeling.
Any individual independent of the primary source is considered independent as per WP:FRIND. What LuckyLouie believes/claims as regards to objectivity, contradicts WP:BIASED. In the end, both WP:FRIND and WP:BIASED are "content guidelines" not "policies", that is, we should attempt to follow, but since there may be exceptions we should not confine ourselves to those. I guess the main issue is Hastings' academic background, because there was another source by another academic Jon Klimo which was deleted repetitively also. I think it is thought that, the content of the article may "acquire" some "credibility" if references contain some credible works, which seems as being tried to prevent. Logos5557 (talk) 16:11, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

Content that is not supported by sources[edit]

I have no idea as to how to deal with this problem, so I hope someone here can help. In the Uyghur people page there is currently a problem with a user (Dolatjan) who insist that his edits are supported by the reliable sources, but aren't, for example the edits here and here. here. At the moment the problem is with the Education section involving mainly two books 1) Blaine Kaltman - Under the Heel of the Dragon: Islam, Racism, Crime, and the Uighur in China (pp 17, 19, 57 and 72), and 2) Chen YangBin - Muslim Uyghur Students in a Chinese Boarding School: Social Recapitalization as a Response to Ethnic Integration (pp 40-50). I have no problem with sources (I have in fact all the books cited in the section), problem is that the content are not found in the sources quoted, for example as discussed here (quotes from the books given) - here and here, and here. Although reasons have been given as to why his edits were removed (content not supported by source, or the content is not relevant to the section), he insisted on reverting back to his version, removing all the effort I put in to give proper sources and to give a clearer view of the subject. I don't know if it is because his English is so poor that he doesn't understand the books he reads or what I wrote, or if it's just plain stubbornness. If anyone wants to offer an opinion on the problem with the source or in Talk:Uyghur people, or what to do about the page, or can help guide the editor on how to use reliable sources, please do help. I have abandoned the page for now because I don't know how to deal with someone who is difficult to reason with, and the discussion with him doesn't make sense anymore. Hzh (talk) 11:15, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

It would be helpful for you to provide an example where you quote what text was added along with the text in the source so we can see whether they differ in meaning. TFD (talk) 16:29, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
A couple of examples:
  • Here, he added "Uyghur Girls often be encouraged by thier family to continue with secular education to a high level, only some radical muslim family in souther Xinjiang that prohibits female member of the family from education." (His English is poor but he complained when I reworded his edits to something more readable.) When pressed for page number because I could not find it in the book, he gave page 17, 19, 57 and 72 of Blaine Kaltman's Under the Heel of the Dragon. None of the pages contain what he said about radical Muslim family and female education, I gave some excerpts from those pages here.
  • Here, he added "These kind of schools wich gives instruction in Uyghur is only for primary school, after the age of 11 kids dont have school for learning Uyghur, although the kind of primary school that teachs Uyghur is very little number and it is insufficent for the uyghur children." citing pages 40-50 of Chen YangBin's Muslim Uyghur Students in a Chinese Boarding School. It's a somewhat mangled account of what's written there which doesn't quite say what he wrote. The situation is somewhat complex as the Chinese Government policy on Uyghur language education changes through the years and what's been done may vary by regions, so I tried to give a reasonable account with correct sources here, but he reverted that. Hzh (talk) 17:34, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

This is an endemic problem on Wikipedia - especially where editors appear to have strong personal feelings about a topic. All we can do is point out that misuse of a source is considered a serious infraction in the project. Even so, the tendency to stretch what a source actually says into what the person wishes to claim is real too often. Collect (talk) 17:39, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

Yes, and in general, I try to avoid editing certain pages, for example those with political content or on contentious subjects to avoid problems like that. This page is probably one of those potentially troublesome ones because its subject matter relates to current events, although in this case, I am not really sure what the problem is with that particular editor (seems like his understanding of English is at least part of the problem). It feels like time wasted trying to fix the page when you can't have a reasonable discourse with the particular editor who keeps undoing the work put in, which is why I've now stopped editing that page, at least for the time being if not permanently. Hzh (talk) 20:01, 9 July 2014 (UTC) (and the Center for Responsive Politics)[edit]

What is the current consensus - if there is one - about, which is a project of the Center for Responsive Politics? FWIW, I searched the archives for past discussions on the subject, and found these:

  1. 3 January 2012 [15]
  2. 25 January 2014 [16]

I am still reading and digesting those discussions, but for my question, specifically, it has to do with a Sunlight Foundation report - Drutman, Lee (2012-12-18). "NRA’s allegiances reach deep into Congress". Sunlight Foundation.  - that gives (a Sunlight project) and as its data sources. --Lightbreather (talk) 21:17, 9 July 2014 (UTC)

This posting is redundant with an above existing discussion, Wikipedia:Reliable_sources/Noticeboard#NRA_PAC_contributions_to_Congressional_candidates --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 21:22, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
No sir. The other discussion is about a particular article from the Sunlight Foundation (which gives OpenSecrets as one of two sources for its data) and its reliability for what it's cited for. This is a question about OpenSecrets in general. I have edited at least two articles now - the National Rifle Association, and Gun politics in the United States - where statements have been made to the effect, OpenSecrets is not a reliable source. In other words, as if anything from OpenSecrets is unreliable. Lightbreather (talk) 23:33, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
OpenSecrets is primarily a searchable database - thus is not a source of claims other than what is in the dataset. It can automatically give totals of certain data, but that is a characteristic of searchable datasets in general. It is widely used without comment on Wikipedia, but using it to make any inferences or implications is beyond its proper use. It is "naked figures". Cheers. Collect (talk) 21:47, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
OpenSecrets is more than a database. (Nor is it a blog, as our WP article about Center for Responsive Politics states... I will fix that.) Yes, it has data that other organizations and news media use, but it also does its own analysis and reporting. Like the Sunlight Foundation, it is nonprofit, nonpartisan, has 4 out of 4 stars on CharityNavigator, and is used by many respectable, mainstream news sources. My question isn't about OR or synthesis using OpenSecrets raw data; it's about whether the organization itself and its data is considered unreliable in general by Wikipedian editors. Lightbreather (talk) 23:42, 9 July 2014 (UTC)
Please provide sources for all of the claims that you have just made otherwise its useless drivel. --Scalhotrod - Just your average banjo playing, drag racing, cowboy... (Talk) 15:49, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Various Marxian and national accounts pages[edit]

Hi all,
There has been a disagreement over several pages relating to economics concepts, particularly those that Marx touched on. I have been removing quite a lot of content which was unsourced, or which took a passing mention in a source and spun into a bigger essay, or which misinterpreted sources (usually trying to reframe things from a marxist perspective, which fails WP:NPOV). Some of the content is blatantly false, like this. However, Jurriaan (talk · contribs) disagrees, reverting my edits en masse as "vandalism". I have tried to approach this on some of the articles' talkpages, but Jurriaan's line of argument is that I'm a "vandal" and "scam editor", so we're not making much progress. The sheer volume of unsourced and mis-sourced content makes it impractical to pick out short examples, but this is representative. Would any other uninvolved editors like to contribute? The affected pages include:

Any suggestions? bobrayner (talk) 00:37, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

I would start by suggesting you not make edits the way you've made them. Just looking at this one as an example, you stripped Routledge-quality citations and blanked whole sections. It's not surprising an editor would see this as possible vandalism. __ E L A Q U E A T E 00:50, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
(edit conflict) That one is a good example. Adam Smith said that the rate of profit is difficult to know; we have a reliable source to that extent. However, the article now says that Adam Smith thought profits tended to fall just like Marx did; that's a very different claim. That edit also removed a large amount of unsourced content, but wordcount is not an exemption from WP:V. I had originally made a series of smaller changes, each with a relevant editsummary (example), but Jurriaan just reverts everything - which makes more nuanced discussion difficult. bobrayner (talk) 01:05, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
At first glance that edit looks highly problematic, since it indeed removes a lot of proper sources. The issue is not what Adam Smith exactly said or meant or you think he did, but the take of reputable secondary sources on it. Exactly those sources you deleted. Or did you check all those sources and claim they were not properly paraphrased?--Kmhkmh (talk) 14:36, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
Adding: this is probably trending towards WP:ANI territory rather than RSN, but I've also noted issues with Jurriaan's tendency to include lengthy OR passages in articles he works on, which ends up making the article incredibly long and rather undersourced. The talk-page issue is also a persistent one, with comments like "I would appreciate it if clueness "Marxist" amateurs refrained from hacking into my wiki articles on Marx's concepts" extending back to at least 2010. Nikkimaria (talk) 01:02, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
Some of your edits, like this one and this one, are good faith defensible. I can see that those passages have no obvious sourcing. But some of the material may be citable to the works in the Bibliography/Works/References section in some of this instances. Many articles about academic topics don't have as many inline citations, and rely more on bibliography-style citation. Wholesale blanking probably isn't going to be seen as a collegial solution or co-operative behavior. I also don't see this as much of a Reliable Source issue. You've removed stuff sourced to Penguin, Routledge, etc. which would generally be considered well sourced, and you've removed stuff that had no cited sources. It's fine to challenge unsourced stuff, but unless it's a copyvio or BLP problem, it's generally better to talk it through. Jurriaan might benefit from a more recent look at WP:OWN and WP:UNSOURCED, but Bobrayner should avoid overlarge blanket removals as well, also per some of the advice in WP:UNSOURCED. (I don't think bringing up comments made in 2010 is especially helpful here).__ E L A Q U E A T E 01:23, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
Speaks to the long-standing pattern; compare "The scam editor Bob Rayner User:Bobrayner specializes in cutting large bits out of articles that he doesn't like, for no reason at all or for some spurious reason. He doesn't understand anything about the subjectmatter. The article then has to be reset to what is was before his vandalism" from just a few days ago. Nikkimaria (talk) 01:51, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
The problem is that Bob Rayner is still scamming and frauding in articles he knows nothing about. Now he says: "Adam Smith said that the rate of profit is difficult to know; we have a reliable source to that extent. However, the article now says that Adam Smith thought profits tended to fall just like Marx did; that's a very different claim." This is a fraudulent misrepresentation. Originally, I inserted the Adam Smith quote, because Smith made an important point about the difficulty of verifying the average rate of profit, and because of his idea that the rate of profit must be related to the rate of interest. Adam Smith did indeed propose a theory of the TPRF, but it was not the same as Marx's, and this was also explicitly stated and referenced in the beginning of the article... until Bob Rayner removed the relevant sentence, because, he falsely claimed, it was not referenced. So Bob Rayner is frauding again. Subsequently, I have modified the bit that Nikkimaria edited, and indicated, for the sake of relevancy, that if it was difficult to verify what the average rate of profit is, then it is also difficult to know if it is falling. This point became very important much later, in the further development of the controversy about the TRPF, since particularly from the 1960s, onward academics tried to verify empirically what the rate of profit was, using statistical data. To give another idea of Bob Rayner's false logic: in the article on Use value, Bob Rayner has decided that "we have to present a mainstream view, rather than letting this article reflect the views of a minority who actually believe in such concepts". This is again a fraud and a statement of prejudice. Firstly, if a minority viewpoint is provably being presented, the minority viewpoint should not be wiped out in favour of the mainstreamn view, but simply presented under a separate heading along with the mainstream view. Secondly, however, every economic historian knows that "use value" is a standard category of classical political economy, which is today used mainly in Marxian economics, and everyone knows, that the neoclassical concept of "utility" is not at all the same thing as the classical concept of use-value. Joseph Schumpeter makes that very clear in his history of economics, for example. However, Bob Rayner who is clueless about the subject and about the literature, thinks he has the right to rip up the article to bring it into line with what he thinks is "common sense". It is just crude vandalism. The general problem with Bob Rayner is, that he tries to edit articles although he knows nothing about the subject of the articles, and then cuts out large bits of texts without any explanation or discussion on the talk page, or with a totally spurious or crucially vague explanation. This criminal, destructive, and biased activity, which arbitrarily destroys the work of others, will be fought till the end. The reason is, that people do not want their effort destroyed by an editor who knows nothing about the topic, and is just following his own whims and biases. If editors like Bob Rayner are permitted to dominate wikipedia, the quality and usefulness of wikipedia will be destroyed.Jurriaan (talk) 12:46, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
Accusing any editor of "scamming and frauding" is not an impressive mode of discourse. Appending "criminal" is quite beyond the pale. I urge you to have a cup of ta, and to take a break from editing the topic - lest you find your behaviour itself questioned here. Collect (talk) 14:03, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
There would be nothing objectionable about Rayner's edits, IF they were welltaken, IF they were properly explained, and IF Rayner had experience with the subject. But most of the time, Rayner is just removing bits from leftwing articles that he doesn't like, with no more than a cryptic comment (if at all), or he dreams up some point of protocol that "looks like" it might justify his action. The reason why he gets away with his scurrilous activity, is because nobody bothers to go carefully through the track record of his edits, and because nobody actually thinks through about the editing that he does, beyond a very superficial inspection. It is true that unsourced material can be removed, but it can also be reinserted by someone still working on the article. The main reasons for removing unsourced material are, if the material is obviously wrong, or if its validity is in doubt, or if it is obviously biased or too contentious. This is a very different thing however from removing material simply BECAUSE it is unsourced. If we were to adopt such a rule, we might as well wipe out more than half of wikipedia, since more than half of the content is in reality unsourced. What Rayner does, is that he finds a bit he doesn't like, and then he searches around to find something that is wrong with it, such as that it is unsourced, and then he wipes it out saying that "it is unsourced". But he is not even an expert on the topic, who can reliably judge the validity of the content! By the way, the articles I wrote or worked on which are at issue here were for the most part from the series on Marxism and Marxian economics, and on national accounts. In his typical fraudulent manner, Rayner however portrays these articles as "economics articles". If they are portrayed as "economics" articles, he can destroy the articles on the ground that they are not "mainstream economics." I am not fooled by Rayner, even if wikipedia authorities are, and I am going to fight Rayner's destructive vandalism since a lot of time and effort went into creating the articles which Rayner is destroying. Rayner's shit editing has to stop, that is all there is to it.Jurriaan (talk) 19:44, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

H-Soz-u-Kult (History Department of the Humboldt University of Berlin)[edit]

I want to confirm that book reviews of H-Soz-u-Kult (History Department of the Humboldt University of Berlin) are reliable.

I am working on User:WhisperToMe/The Chinese in Latin America and the Caribbean, and if this review is reliable it means the book is eligible for a Wikipedia article (there is one more independent source). WhisperToMe (talk) 18:16, 10 July 2014 (UTC)

Reliable, but is that really the threshold? Because virtually every academic book will have two reviews in academic publications, so are we intending to have an article on every single academic book? Itsmejudith (talk) 18:47, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
It's whatever WP:GNG says. Now, in terms of what to prioritize, there are two ways: One, the most recognized books in a given field. The second (and this is my motive for this book) is for writing about books that are being used as sources in Wikipedia articles. I liked this response in regard on what to do about books: Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_China/Archive_24#Articles_on_important_China_books WhisperToMe (talk) 18:53, 10 July 2014 (UTC)
I do not see any point in writing an article. The book is a collection of articles. A better approach I think would be to write or improve articles about the contributors, provided they meet notability. For a book to be notable, you need to show that it has received widespread coverage, not just that it has been reviewed. TFD (talk) 17:29, 11 July 2014 (UTC)[edit]

Is the prose at "" considered reliable. He is there about us page: (T / C / WP:FOUR / WP:CHICAGO / WP:WAWARD) 21:47, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

Looks like an overglorified blog to me. I can't begin to name the company, but I swear I've seen that formatting on some "make your own blog" site before. Ian.thomson (talk) 21:58, 11 July 2014 (UTC)[edit]

Is a reliable source?--TonyTheTiger (T / C / WP:FOUR / WP:CHICAGO / WP:WAWARD) 06:11, 12 July 2014 (UTC)

Journalist connected to the subject[edit]

If a journalist who collaborates with the author of a work publishes an article about the author in a different media, can that newspaper article be used as a reliable source about the author without disclosing the connection between the two?

Aja Romano from the Daily Dot has been writing articles about her Anita Sarkeesian, author of the Feminist Frequency blog where Aja "has been a regular contributor".[25] [26] These articles are being used at at Wikipedia articles Tropes vs. Women in Video Games and Anita Sarkeesian, a WP:BLP. (The connection between Romano and Sarkeesian has been removed from the former as "not relevant"). Can the source be used without notice at the Reception section of those articles? Diego (talk) 06:34, 12 July 2014 (UTC)

It's a simple statement of fact. It doesn't need a disclaimer. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 12:22, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
Agreed. No need to qualify it in every mention on Wikipedia; especially as readers can see the note listed in the article itself. So long as the source is reliable and accurately represented, the information, not the author, is what's relevant.--Cúchullain t/c 14:25, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
Usage in Anita Sarkeesian is not a statement of fact, is an WP:RSOPINION. WP:BLPPRIMARY advices us to "exercise extreme caution in using primary sources"; and failing to warn readers that a reference is connected to the topic (and thus primary) is the opposite of that. Diego (talk) 23:39, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
The decision should be based on the reliability of the publication. If the publication is a reliable source, then presumably the editors are persuaded that the connection between the author and the subject did not affect the accuracy of the author's writing. TFD (talk) 18:29, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
But can we say that the editors were persuaded that the connection didn't affect the article's accuracy? The publication contains a disclaimer about the connection between the journalist and Feminist Frequency, so the author herself seems concerned that it may be relevant enough to the point to feel necessary to make readers of the Daily Dot aware of it. I think Wikipedia readers deserve no less, and using a reference that is connected to the topic without disclosing it is particularly problematic for a WP:BLP. Diego (talk) 23:26, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
It's being used to cite a statement of fact. Either it's a reliable source for that fact or it's not, that's the real question we should be asking. To that end, previous discussions at Talk:Anita Sarkeesian (the main article) have judged that Daily Dot is generally okay to use. For what it's worth, Daily Dot exercises an editorial policy and Aja Romano is one of their staff writers (ie, not a blogger or freelancer).[27] Of course that doesn't mean we must use the source, that's a matter of editorial judgment, but we don't have to bend over backward to qualify it.--Cúchullain t/c 00:10, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
You consider "even "strong female characters" are portrayed under this trope, and not treated as equals of male characters" to be a statement of fact? Well, maybe about the fact that she made an analysis of the series, but those follow a different set of rules. The Reception section is supposed to gather reactions from independent parties; if you write it with content from regular contributors without disclosing that they are connected to the subject, the result is not neutral, and that should be avoided - everywhere, but specially in a biography of a living person.
Aja Romano is a regular donor of Sarkeesians's blog Feminist Frequency. This connection between the journalist and the author has not been discussed before, and it certainly may affect the judgement of the journalist. While articles from the Daily Dot by other writers may be reliable, the relation between Sarkeesian and Romano forces us to use the source with great care if at all, and certainly to disclose that connection in case we decide to use the material. Diego (talk) 07:58, 13 July 2014 (UTC)
Diego, reading through Sarkeesian's page, it doesn't look like Romano's statement is extraordinary or surprising, or that her claim is wholly out of bounds. Attribution, which is now present in the text, is appropriate. All I'd say is that the text should probably read "Romano… writes that..." instead of "Romano… notes that…" because the word "write" doesn't imply veracity, while "note" does. -Darouet (talk) 19:51, 13 July 2014 (UTC)

Check for reliability. Russo-Gergian War.[edit]

1) Source. [28] 2) Article. Russo-Georgian War. 3) Content.

Ossetian separatists began shelling Georgian villages on 1 August, drawing sporadic response from Georgian peacekeepers in the region


Well afaik I know the content is false, but i may not recall the details correctly. In any case that content with this source is highly questionable for a number of reasons. Radio Liberty is partisan source (in fact strictly speaking a US propaganda outlet) and the article was in close proximity to the war (and related "hot" propaganda battles). There should be plenty of sources being less partisan with a better reputation regarding reliability and with a greater distance to the war as well. In fact by now (6 years later) there is probably even some amount of scholarly literature about the conflict. Since the start of the war and its exact circumstances are a in doubt a highly controversial, a radio liberty publication from that date is imho not acceptable as the only source for such a content and even if contrary to my recollection the content were true there should be a number of better suited sources that could/should be used.--Kmhkmh (talk) 08:38, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
P.S.: The quoted content without context is a bit misleading. In it is actually a part of a section on pre-war clashes/skirmishes initiated from both sites (often less than optimally sourced by contemporary news outlets without a particular reputation). In this context if the articles balances out those less than optimal sources, the use of Radio Liberty might not be that problematic as it appeared to for the quoted sentence without context alone. However the whole section should resort to intext attribution (according to <partisan source >) rather than portraying all these incidents as (undisputed) "facts". To describe them as "facts", they need to be corroborated by several sources at least or scholarly literature instead of being sourced simply by one (often partisan) news outlet. To sum it up, the use radio liberty for that content is still iffy (in particular without intext attribution), but it isn't the only content and source which is iffy in that section. Rather than starting an argument over radio liberty alone, the involved editors should collaborate to overhaul the whole section with better sources if available and at least using intext attribution otherwise.--Kmhkmh (talk) 09:09, 12 July 2014 (UTC)

Gaza War Image[edit]

As I have pointed out here, an IDF image used for propaganda is placed in the article. It not only violates WP:SOURCE, but also WP:NPOV. I want to be confirmed that

  1. The image is used for propaganda and not serves explanation of the article
  2. Date, time and place of the image are not verifiable
  3. The IDF as a party that takes part in the hostilities in general is not a reliable source

--Wickey-nl (talk) 10:52, 12 July 2014 (UTC)

Length of a trail[edit]

Is user-generated reliable enough to back up a claim that Hong Kong Trail is only 43 km, contrary to what its official website says? I'm asking on behalf of a new editor who raised this question on my talk page. —LucasThoms 13:09, 12 July 2014 (UTC)[edit]

I have strong concerns about using as a source on BLP articles or in reference to living persons. For example, on To Catch a Predator:

John Kennelly was also significant given that he was caught by Dateline and Hansen twice during the same operation: first at the undercover house, where he appeared naked to meet an underage child, and then again less than 24 hours later at a McDonald's fast food restaurant in the Rosslyn neighborhood.<ref></ref>

From what I can tell from their about page, the website is a group of dedicating to catching people who target minors for sexual encounters online. They gather evidence of illegal behaviors and submit them to police. However, their evidence is just accusations that may lead to an arrest which may lead to a conviction. This goes against WP:BLPCRIME. There is no editorial oversight or third-party oversight. They have been accused of libel in multiple jurisdictions (

In my opinion, this website should never be used as a source. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 17:09, 12 July 2014 (UTC)

Under no circumstances should this website ever be used as a source. They are neither a news organisation, nor an academic source. The material on the site appears to be generated by 'volunteers'. As such they wouldn't meet WP:RS requirements for general content - and given the subject matter of the website, WP:BLP requirements would absolutely rule out any use. AndyTheGrump (talk) 17:27, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
It is a primary source and we should not mention stories that only appear on this site, per WP:WEIGHT. TFD (talk) 18:26, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
I agree with AndyTheGrump and The Four Deuces (TFD) on this matter; however, like I stated here, per WP:Aboutself, I'm sure that can be used to source information about itself as long as it doesn't violate WP:BLP. Flyer22 (talk) 19:08, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
The passage quoted at the top of this thread isn't even remotely 'about itself'. It is making specific assertions regarding alleged criminal acts by a named living person. Nothing said by regarding alleged criminality by living people can be used. Ever. AndyTheGrump (talk) 20:09, 12 July 2014 (UTC)
  • Not a reliable source Per Andy. CorporateM (Talk) 20:20, 12 July 2014 (UTC)

oil cleansing method[edit]

I'm trying to figure out whether a book is self-published or not. The company is called Betterway Home Books and this is the book in question. At the end of the cited passage, it notes: "for more information, head to [the author's blog] and search oil cleansing method" This leads me to believe it is not WP:Reliable. Thoughts? - Sweet Nightmares 20:41, 13 July 2014 (UTC)

Details from less reliable sources complementing information from better sources[edit]

In an article I intend on writing, but haven't written yet (Asher Eder, in case anyone is interested), I have very few reliable sources for the subject's death. The only marginally reliable source is an article on the website of an organization Eder was associated with ( - Hebrew). However, only the year of death is given. The only online source I could find that has Eder's exact date of death is the personal website of a known associate of Eder, Lowell Gallin[29]. Would this count as a reliable source for a small detail? הסרפד (call me Hasirpad) 01:01, 14 July 2014 (UTC)