Category talk:Conspiracy theorists

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POV issues[edit]

Revised the category description to try and remove subjectivity[edit]

I revised the category description to try and remove subjectivity in determining category inclusion. One of the complaints about the category was that there is too much subjectivity in whether or not to call someone a conspiracy theorist. I narrowed the category definition to include only theorists who actively attempt to defend ideas currently included in articles under Category:Conspiracy theories. So if a theory appears under that category, then anyone who actively defends it falls under this category as a theorist.

For more discussion, see the Category deletion thread for this category at [1] Dugwiki 21:17, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

Term "Conspiracy theorist" inherently POV[edit]

This doesn't really deal with the fact that "Conspiracy theorist" is a pejorative term in common usage, and as such is inherently POV. Establishing and maintaining a correspondence to the "Conspiracy theories" category merely begs the question, as calling an opinion a "Conspiracy theory" is also pejorative and a POV pre-judgment. --IslandGyrl 04:27, 19 November 2006 (UTC)

To be a 'conspiracy theorist' someone just has to have a theory that a secretive conspiracy of powerful figures is behind a phenomenon, there is no necessary judgement on the validity of these theories or on the theorist themself. People like Ron Paul and Alex Jones with their claims of a secretive new world order being behind various events, or David Icke with his conspiracies of secret lizardmen, are clearly conspiracy theorists.Conspiracy theorists have a poor reputation concerning the validity of their claims, but the same is true of, for example, the US republican party; it is no more POV to call David Icke a conspiracy theorist than it would be to call John McCain a republican. (talk) 21:08, 30 May 2009 (UTC)
Not true. That's not even what's in Wikipedia itself:
  • "A conspiracy theory is an explanation of an event or situation that invokes an unwarranted conspiracy… The term is a derogatory one."
Wisdomtooth32 (talk) 04:34, 14 December 2017 (UTC)

Adding people to this category is purely POV[edit]

Choosing people's name for this category is purely POV. Unless they have declared themselves as 'Conspiracy Theorists' or there is a media reference upon which has labeled a person(s), then there is no ground of factual basis to label someone's opinion on an agenda as a conspiracy theory. This is purely POV... -AntonioConstantine 15 July 2007

I fully agree that people can be included in this category only if there are verifiable media references either where they have declared themselves or which label the person a conspiracy theorist.---PJHaseldine (talk) 17:17, 11 March 2009 (UTC)
Comment: User:PJHaseldine's case is an interesting one. He has a primary source on his bio (Patrick Haseldine) - the letter(s) to the editor discussed in conspiracy theories - which is adequate for verifying his opinions but inadequate for inclusion in articles related to the theory itself. Now that an indefinite topic ban has been imposed at WP:COI/N he seeks to remove these references (and this category), even if it means redefining "conspiracy theorist".
Initially I too called for reliable sources stating that he is a "conspiracy theorist" but then I retracted this after reviewing the current category requirements which seem fairly reasonable; in my opinion the WP:DUCK test passes so he belongs in this category. If this were a list then the existence of the reliable (if primary) source would likely justify his inclusion independent of his bio.
If someone can be verified to be a proponent of a conspiracy theory then they are by definition a conspiracy theorist (they need not be a proponent of many such theories either - usually there is on ly one). The real grey area then is in defining what exactly is a conspiracy theory, but that's a topic for another article. In summary, WP:V applies as always but in my opinion there need not be an overt "X is a conspiracy theorist" statement (these are rare anyway). -- samj inout 10:22, 12 March 2009 (UTC)
I have another take on this: there's no doubt about his association with a theory about PA-103, that it's his own invention, that he's been campaigning for supporters for it and that there are primary sources that back this up. So if the duck test is so obviously satisfied, then what's the problem? Looking at his own wording in the content he's created around this, he prefers to euphemistically call his theory an "alternate theory" rather than a "fringe theory" or "conspiracy theory". While I'm quite sure he will be quick to differ when he chirps in, my interpretation is that he's trying to keep a positive "spin" on his story while trying to gain public support for it (i.e. he's concerned that the word "conspiracy" may have negative connotations for his campaign), and secondly, that he absolutely believes his own theory, so that from his POV, it is fact. In other words, this is a form of COI, as the subject's objectives and perceptions in respect of his theory differ from those of uninvolved editors, who simply see this as another of many conspiracy theories around PA-103. Socrates2008 (Talk) 11:19, 12 March 2009 (UTC)
My so-called Euphemism was shared by all editors until less than 3 months ago when the title of Alternative theories of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 was converted to conspiracy theories without discussion. And it was Socrates' pal, Deon Steyn, who put the Alternative theories article into the Category:Conspiracy theories in the first place!
Didn't their concerted attack work out well?---PJHaseldine (talk) 14:27, 12 March 2009 (UTC)
While most of your argument is solid I don't accept that an interest (no matter how strong) constitutes a conflict of interest - there needs to be a stronger connection than that, such as an association membership or similar. If we're not clear about this then we'll never get it into policy where it belongs, and people will continue to be falsely accused. Anyway that's not a conversation for this page. -- samj inout 17:17, 14 March 2009 (UTC)

Category blurb should be free of POV[edit]

This category since 'edited' no longer contains the 'stand alone' description of what a conspiracy theorist is. I wholeheartedly disagree with how this has been merged together. Will the person who did this please explain what gave them the right to do so. I have added a simple explanation that does not contain any subjective opinion. All other dictionaries and encyclopedias contain this basic explanation. Wiki should be no different. If anyone removes the entry, i would ask them to explain why.

Anna Lovatt —Preceding unsigned comment added by Mooby39 (talkcontribs) 14:15, August 16, 2007 (UTC)

A separate category for groups and organizations needed[edit]

Presently several members of this category are not individuals. Only people whould be in this category, not groups and organizations. We should therefore create another category for such entitities, and the only reason I'm not doing it right away is that I'm unsure what the best name would be. __meco (talk) 11:52, 2 March 2009 (UTC)

Linking Adolf Hitler to 'Conspiracy theorists' in general defamation of character[edit]

I totally repudiate the attempt here to put 'Adolf Hitler' on equal footing with, say, Phil Berg, Richard C. Hoagland or Webster Tarpley. If we are talking about 'conspiracy theorists', why not include Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson as well? Woodrow Wilson was buddy-buddy with the Ku Klux Klan and he believed in the same fallacious theories on biology and race as Adolf Hitler - that the Nordic race was supreme and that intermingling with blacks and semitics resulted in 'race suicide'. I did not make that up - they said it themselves. Anyone who knows anything about eugenics in the early 20th century should be able to verify that for themselves by digging into the archival records, going through the newspapers of the period and looking at what prominent people said about the different 'races'.

Obviously, some attempt at differentiation has to be applied here - you can't - with a straight face - put Adolf Hitler next to, say, Webster Tarpley and Gore Vidal and expect to get away with it without people calling into question the motives behind such an attempt to stimulate, feed and misdirect preconceived notions as to what a 'conspiracy theorist' believes and what he represents. (talk) 14:34, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

I think his race theories defaming Jews would qualify very well as conspiracy theories. So, yes I think it's well justified. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 19:50, 5 November 2011 (UTC)

'False Conspiracy' theorists[edit]

Firstly: let's say we find a person, a scientist or so, that researches in real conspiracies, should (s)he be here or not? By convention no, but ... shouldn't the term be false conspiracy theorists or some such?

Secondly: a comment on the "inherently POV" complaint above, if the external world regards someone as "conspiracy theorist" it is "inherently NPOV" and according to the principles of Wikipedia to use that here too. Wikipedia is strongly biased in direction towards majority opinion, and usually that is acceptable. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 19:48, 5 November 2011 (UTC)

Missing 411[edit]

How does one get a conspiracy theory (or theorist) added to this list? There are a series of at least 6 books and a soon to be released documentary on the Missing 411 conspiracy created and espoused by David Paulides, yet I see no way to add that here. RobP (talk) 20:33, 22 September 2017 (UTC)