Wikipedia talk:Proposed deletion

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Why I think article creators shouldn't be able to take down prods.[edit]

This editor has just gone and created[1] about 100 unreferenced articles. I tried prodding a few, but he or she took them down. How do we know these are notable? How do we know this actually happened?...William 18:51, 24 November 2013 (UTC)

The editor answered[2] an inquiry I made at his talk page. They wrote- 'I've taken them from List of United Kingdom by-elections (1868–85)'. After I told them that would violate WP:CIRCULAR. Then came this reply= 'That would be true if I was citing the page. I'm not.' But that's his source. May I also add, he put unreferenced tags up on two of the three articles I PRODed. Any suggestions what to do next? A massive AFD?...William 19:17, 24 November 2013 (UTC)

Proposed deletions, unlike speedy deletions, can be proposed for just about any reason. It is therefor important that they should be taken down for any reason by anyone. The AfD will be lost as these are all actual by-elections and therefor will be seen to be notable, and the references will be found soon enough. JASpencer (talk) 19:21, 24 November 2013 (UTC)
Merely being unreferenced is not a valid reason to delete something. Being unverifiable is a valid reason, but that requires that there are no suitable sources for the information in question, not just that the article doesn't cite any. In this case it's very clear that there are sources available for this information (such as, say, these) so any AfD would have no chance of succeeding. Hut 8.5 21:05, 24 November 2013 (UTC)
No opinion on the specific case mentioned. On the topic about article creators taking down PRODs on articles they created, I have no problem with it. PROD means to me an "unopposed deletion" and if someone opposes it, then we go to AFD. The mechanism is in place.--Paul McDonald (talk) 21:40, 24 November 2013 (UTC)
In my opinion it's already too easy to delete an article through PROD. Many articles receive no review other than the nominator and the admin who closes the PROD, and the admin doesn't actually have any formal responsibility to review the proposed deletion. I spent a few months reviewing PRODded articles daily and I contested about 20% of the proposals as invalid. Let's not throw up more road blocks. Pburka (talk) 21:49, 24 November 2013 (UTC)
I was on PROD patrol a few years ago and it was far higher than 20% that I took down - so at least things have improved since then. JASpencer (talk) 22:13, 26 November 2013 (UTC)
In the specific case, the list article is referenced to F. W. S. Craig's compendium on the subject. The need to repeat the citation in each article is at most a technicality of wiki process which contributes little to actual wp:V. This doesn't strike me as a great reason to hit the delete switch. LeadSongDog come howl! 22:25, 24 February 2014 (UTC)
Proposed deletions are for articles where nobody (including the article creator) has a good faith objection to deletion. They are meant to be uncontroversial and a way to circumvent our usual deletion processes when a deletion discussion isn't necessary, but an article doesn't meet speedy deletion criteria. Think of a PROD as halfway between AfD and CSD. If the article creator was not allowed to object to a PROD, it would go against the original purpose of the deletion method.
That's not to say that anyone can object for any reason whatsoever. There have been instances (I've witnessed them myself) where a disruptive editor removes the proposed deletion tags from a massive number of articles with no explanation and without discretion, simply as a form of vandalism. These editors were shown to be vandalism-only accounts so clearly there was no good faith in the objections. In those cases, the proposed deletion tags were restored and the deletion process was allowed to continue without interruption.
If there is a case where someone creates 100 new articles that you feel don't meet inclusion criteria, there are three options. Propose them for deletion (which cannot stand if the author objects), find speedy deletion criteria that apply to the articles and tag them (which only works if the articles meet those criteria) or nominate them for deletion per AfD. If you have a large number of related articles that have the same problem, you can propose a single AfD discussion which encompasses them all. Yes, it requires work on your part, but you're also undoing the work that another editor has put into creating those articles in the first place, so it's only fair. -- Atama 22:40, 24 February 2014 (UTC)

A little restraint please[edit]

I bow to no one in my frustration with spam and self promotional articles, as also the unsourced non-notable $#^! that people try to pass off as an encyclopedic article. But seriously folks, give new articles a break. I am not talking about an article that's at the back end of the NPP queue. I am talking about the article that was created an hour ago! I just took a little tour of the PROD log for Feb 1 and at least a quarter of the PRODs that had been put up were on article that were less than 24 hrs old at the time. People need to take a deep breath before proposing the wiki equivalent of capital punishment for an article that only just appeared.

If there is obvious CSD material, that's one thing. Tag away. But otherwise tag bombing and PRODing an article in it's first 24 hrs of life is frankly rude. And it's almost certain to discourage newbie editors. If a new born article has really major problems that might lead to a PROD or an AfD nom, why not drop a line to the creator and give them a heads up before launching a delete proposal? And remember that if a PROD gets yanked (and I took a couple down that looked grossly premature) you can't put another one up if the article still sucks a month into it's existence. You are stuck with the Casino AfD.

Honestly, if I were wiki dictator for a day I think I would impose a ban on PRODs for any article that wasn't at least 72 hrs old. -Ad Orientem (talk) 04:27, 2 February 2014 (UTC)

"why not drop a line to the creator" - given that most PRODs don't even result in a notice on the editor's talk page, when there are automated tools for such, I think we can assume it is too much for a manually edited "heads up post". Which is the whole problem, IMHO, PROD is simply too easy, and the tools make it easier still. Maury Markowitz (talk) 15:24, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

RfC announcement[edit]

Please see the RfC at Wikipedia talk:The answer to life, the universe, and everything#RfC: Is this an information page or is it an essay? --Guy Macon (talk) 01:14, 9 February 2014 (UTC)

Out of control?[edit]

I periodically peruse the PROD list to see what's going on. Currently there are about 300 articles listed. I didn't even make it 1/2 way through the "1" and "2" list and I already had 7 declines and only 2 supports. In only one case was the decline even marginal. In another case the PROD was on a duplicate article, which the PRODder didn't appear to bother checking in Google. In another, the PRODder simply PRODded because it used to be speedy, and apparently didn't bother to look whether or not it met the criterion for either. As I have not done this for months, it implies perhaps hundreds of articles were deleted because of bad PRODs like these.

PROD, as the editor above notes, is being used for "this is a bad article" or even "this is a new article" - not "incontestable deletion". This has always been the case, and shows no sign of getting better. People are clearly using PROD as an AfD process, apparently to save themselves time and effort. I am aware that there is a man-in-the-loop admin that has to do the physical deletion, but every bad PROD they have to look at decreases the time they have to actually examine the PROD - if they do that at all (I'm not sure).

As the abuse is both widespread and not improving, I suggest we start a process of more narrowly defining when PROD can be used. BLP, COPYVIO and obvious promotion seem like good candidates. Beyond that I think one might argue that PROD should be declined on sight.

Maury Markowitz (talk) 14:48, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

No. You said, "People are clearly using PROD as an AfD process, apparently to save themselves time and effort." That is the entire reason that PROD exists. You stated that PROD is for "incontestable deletion", that untrue. Any deletion can be contested except for those that fall under CSD criteria. PROD is for articles that are uncontested, in other words, where nobody has yet expressed an objection to deletion. Once someone does express an objection, it's ineligible for PROD. What you're identifying as abuse is actually correct procedure.
People should be using WP:BEFORE if they're going to propose an article for deletion, but it's not a requirement. Administrators should definitely check that the editor's proposed deletion criteria is correct, with at least a cursory check. What I've always done is a quick check for coverage to see if it's notable. I also look at the article talk page, and the user talk pages of the author and any significant contributor, to see if there has ever been an assertion that the article should be kept or an argument about inclusion.
There has been a backlog of PRODs lately, I was trying to help clean that up before other issues diverted my attention (like the SPI backlog that was getting complaints in various areas, now taken care of). It's not due to an inflated volume so much as the fact that fewer admins are taking care of it. Looking at the number of PRODs per day, the highest count I see is 29 which actually is lower than I remember it being in the past when I used to be a PROD patroller (before I was an admin). What is unusual is the fact that there are PRODs that have expired for days but aren't deleted yet, it used to be taken for granted that all of the PRODs that were due to expire on a particular day would be taken care of by the end of the day. Now that SPI is under control, I'm going to try to help catch up on PRODs. -- Atama 17:04, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
"That is the entire reason that PROD exists"
PROD exists so people can be lazy and avoid the processes we already put in place?
But, as an empiricist, I'd like to look at the numbers. Of the last 100 articles that expired PROD and could be deleted, how many of those did the deleting admin de-prod? I suspect there is an easy way to test this, but I'm not sure how.
Maury Markowitz (talk) 18:05, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
"PROD exists so people can be lazy and avoid the processes we already put in place?" - That's a cynical way to put it, but not inaccurate either. But I don't consider the incentive for PROD to be laziness as much as it is efficiency. If deletion of an article is uncontroversial, you can either go through the lengthy AfD process just to get 3-4 "delete" arguments, then an administrator deletes. Or, just do a quick PROD and have the same result.
Most proposed deletions are done for a good reason. I'm clearing out PRODs from the 25th of February at the moment, and some of these are pretty obvious (though I still do a quick check). Others I took a lot of time to think about. One I "rescued" because I found some real potential in it, from some reputable sources, and I'll probably try to address some of the issues at the article if I have free time, until then it's on my watchlist. (I've fixed up a number of articles by running across them in PROD patrolling.) But I will say that de-prodding an article is unusual, because again, most articles proposed for deletion who last the full 7 days in my experience are legitimate (I'm sure more than 90%, which has to be better than CSD and AfD rates). -- Atama 18:39, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
I mostly concur with Atama's view. Not that long ago I wrote a sharply worded criticism of what I believe is a problem with the way PROD is being used by some editors. But PROD IS an important tool. And to be frank it's one of the tools that is helping to keep the system from breaking down. Right now AfD is on life support. There aren't enough editors participating and AfD-articles routinely are being relisted two and even three times because of this. More than a few that should be deleted are escaping because of this problem. PROD is the first line of defense against obviously really bad articles. It also is useful in that it gives the creator of a new (by which I mean maybe a month or so old) article the opportunity to fix potentially fatal problems without having to deal with AfD. And of course a lot of obviously SPAM articles are created by SPAs who never bother to log in after they have thrown up their little advertisement. PROD is a good way of dealing with them. When I put a PROD on an article in my NPP queue I am hoping to avoid the Casino AfD if at all possible, but also hoping to give other editors that chance to fix an article in case I missed something (it does happen) with a minimum of fuss. If we were to take away PROD, based on my observations of how AfD is working lately, I think the system for getting rid of bad articles would come pretty close to collapse. My own approach to PROD is that I almost always use it before going anywhere else. If you spell out in very clear language what the problem is and make sure you include the appropriate links to WP:N and WP:RS etc it lets the creating editor know where he/she has fallen short and what needs to be done to bring it up to snuff. If a PROD is yanked without evident improvement and or some reasonable explanation ("Hey idiot did you notice the five NY Times articles on the first page of a Google search?"), then and only then do I send it to AfD. At which point I cross my fingers, hop on one foot, and say a Hail Mary in the hopes that there are actually some editors wandering around the forum who will take a look at my nom. -Ad Orientem (talk) 19:09, 4 March 2014 (UTC)
Maury Markowitz, I noticed that you endorsed a proposed deletion for an article that had already been proposed for deletion, and the deletion was contested by the author. The person proposing deletion even stated as much in the deletion rationale of the article, "Previous PROD's seem to have been deleted by WP:SPA without resolving the issue." I'm wondering if some of your concerns are due to a misunderstanding of how the PROD process works. Aside from what is written on the WP:PROD policy page, you might also consider looking at WP:WPPDP. There is some good advice on that WikiProject page about handling proposed deletions. -- Atama 22:08, 4 March 2014 (UTC)

Do you have metrics on the number of PROD declines that occur during the admin closing phase, or not? If not, please tell me how to collect them, and I will do so. Maury Markowitz (talk) 12:38, 5 March 2014 (UTC)

No idea, I don't have any more access to that kind of thing than you do. Maybe someone at WP:VP/T might have an idea how to gather that sort of information. -- Atama 16:28, 5 March 2014 (UTC)

Proposal needing input[edit]

User:AnomieBOT III will currently convert attempted interwiki redirects into soft redirects. It has been proposed that the bot also apply {{prod}} to such redirects in article space, as WP:Soft redirect discourages these. Please comment at WP:VPR#Proposal to automatically ProD redirects to other language versions of wikipedia, instead of turhing them into soft redirects. Thanks. Anomie 13:13, 22 March 2014 (UTC)