Detailed discussions which led to the current consensus can be found in the archives of Talk:United States. Several topical talk archives are identified in the infobox to the right. A complete list of talk archives can be found at the top of the Talk:United States page.
Q2. Why is the article's name "United States" and not "United States of America"?
This has been discussed many times. Please review the summary points below and the discussion archived at the Talk:United States/Name page. The most recent major discussion showed a lack of consensus to either change the name or leave it as the same, so the name was kept as "United States".
If, after reading the following summary points and all the discussion, you wish to ask a question or contribute your opinion to the discussion, then please do so at Talk:United States. The only way that we can be sure of ongoing consensus is if people contribute.
Reasons and counterpoints for the article title of "United States":
"United States" is in compliance with the Wikipedia "Naming conventions (common names)" guideline portion of the Wikipedia naming conventions policy. The guideline expresses a preference for the most commonly used name, and "United States" is the most commonly used name for the country in television programs (particularly news), newspapers, magazines, books, and legal documents, including the Constitution of the United States.
Exceptions to guidelines are allowed.
If we used "United States of America", then to be consistent we would have to rename all similar articles. For example, rename "United Kingdom" to "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" or Mexico to "United Mexican States".
Exceptions to guidelines are allowed. Articles are independent from one another. No rule says articles have to copy-cat each other.
This argument would be valid only if "United States of America" was a particularly uncommon name for the country.
The Macropaedia version of Britannica uses "United States of America" for its article title.
With the reliability, legitimacy, and reputation of all Wikimedia Foundation projects under constant attack, Wikipedia should not hand a weapon to its critics by deviating from the "common name" policy traditionally used by encyclopedias in the English-speaking world.
Wikipedia is supposed to be more than just another encyclopedia.
Reasons and counterpoints for the article title of "United States of America":
It is the country's official name.
The country's name is not explicitly defined as such in the Constitution or in the law. The words "United States of America" only appear three times in the Constitution. "United States" appears 51 times by itself, including in the presidential oath or affirmation. The phrase "of America" is arguably just a prepositional phrase that describes the location of the United States and is not actually part of the country's name.
The whole purpose of the common naming convention is to ease access to the articles through search engines. For this purpose the article name "United States of America" is advantageous over "United States" because it contains the strings "United States of America" and "United States." In this regard, "The United States of America" would be even better as it contains the strings "United States," The United States," "United States of America," and "The United States of America."
The purpose of containing more strings is to increase exposure to Wikipedia articles by increasing search rank for more terms. Although "The United States of America" would give you four times more commonly used terms for the United States, the United States article on Wikipedia is already the first result in queries for United States of America, The United States of America, The United States, and of course United States.
Q3. Is the United States really the oldest constitutional republic in the world?
Yes. San Marino was founded before the United States and did adopt its basic law on 8 October 1600. (https://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/geos/sm.html) Full democracy was attained there with various new electoral laws in the 20th century which augmented rather than amended the existing constitution.
Yes, but not continuously. The first "constitution" within Switzerland is believed to be the Federal Charter of 1291 and most of modern Switzerland was republican by 1600. After Napoleon and a later civil war, the current constitution was adopted in 1848.
Many people in the United States are told it is the oldest republic and has the oldest constitution, however one must use a narrow definition of constitution. Within Wikipedia articles it may be appropriate to add a modifier such as "oldest continuous, federal ..." however it is more useful to explain the strength and influence of the US constitution and political system both domestically and globally. One must also be careful using the word "democratic" due to the limited franchise in early US history and better explain the pioneering expansion of the democractic system and subsequent influence.
The component states of the Swiss confederation were mostly oligarchies in the eighteenth century, however, much tighter than most of the United States, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Connecticut excepted.
Q4. Isn't St. Augustine, Florida the first European settlement in the United States?
Technically, yes. However, Florida was not one of the original 13 colonies that formed the United States and thus the article mentions Jamestown and not St. Augustine.
This decision has been disputed and no explicit consensus has ever been formed on this question.
If you wish to challenge this decision, please do so on the Talk:United States page.
Q5. Why are the Speaker of the House and Chief Justice listed as leaders in the infobox? Shouldn't it just be the President and Vice President?
The President, Vice President, Speaker of The House of Representatives, and Chief Justice are stated within the United States Constitution as leaders of their respective branches of government. As the three branches of government are equal, all four leaders get mentioned under the "Government" heading in the infobox.
Q6. Why are the President's, Vice President's, and Speaker's parties listed, but not the Chief Justice's?
Though the Chief Justice of the United States may belong to a political party, his or her office is a judicial appointment, not an elected office. Therefore, the Chief Justice's party is not included when referencing him or her. (E.g. John Roberts is a Republican, but he is not referenced as John Roberts (R).)
Q7. What is the motto of the United States?
There was no de jure motto of the United States until 1956, when "In God We Trust" was made such. Various other unofficial mottos existed before that, most notably "E Pluribus Unum". The debate continues on what "E Pluribus Unum"'s current status is (de facto motto, traditional motto, etc.) but it has been determined that it never was an official motto of the United States.
Q8. Is the U.S. really the world's largest economy?
The U.S. is the world's largest national economy. The European Union (EU), a "sui generis political body," has a larger economy. While there may be controversy regarding the EU's inclusion in GDP rankings, there is not dispute over the U.S. having the world's largest national economy.
Q9. Isn't it incorrect to refer to it as "America" or its people as "American"?
In English, America (when not preceded by "North", "Central", or "South") almost always refers to the United States. The large super-continent is called the Americas.
This article is within the scope of WikiProject United States, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of topics relating to the United States of America on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the ongoing discussions.
This article is within the scope of WikiProject Countries, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of countries on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
This article is within the scope of WikiProject North America, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of North America on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
This article is substantially duplicated by a piece in an external publication. Please do not flag this article as a copyright violation of the following sources:
Surhone, L. M., Timpledon, M. T., & Marseken, S. F. (2010), Orson Scott Card: United States, author, critic, public speaking, activism, genre, Betascript PublishingCS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
Miller, F. P., Vandome, A. F., & McBrewster, J. (2009), Biosphere 2: Biosphere 2, closed ecological system, Oracle, Arizona, Arizona, United States, Biome, space colonization, Biosphere, rainforest, Ed Bass, BIOS-3, Eden project, AlphascriptCS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
Miller, F. P., Vandome, A. F., & McBrewster, J. (2010), Military journalism: Combatant commander, psychological warfare, United States, public affairs (military), propaganda, journalist, Civil-military operations, Alphascript PublishingCS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
Click the "show" link above for further details.
Mediation update Wikipedia:Requests for mediation/United States
Over the course of six months, eight editors and a mediator consulted on the scope of the United States to determine a sourced lede sentence for the United States article, with an eye to resolving how the total area of the United States should be reported in the Infobox. The mediation has been successful and the participants reached consensus on the issues and have a proposed a new lede sentence for the article which is to be accompanied by a note. It has been agreed by the participants and the mediator that the proposed lede and accompanying note would be presented to article editors and members of the WP community as a Request for comment. It was agreed from the outset that the statement in the lede sentence of the article would have a footnote to explain the inclusion of U.S. territories, the consensus was to use the geographical sense of the United States for a general readership in an international context. Participants in the RfC are invited to survey the summary boxes below and the discussions at the link Requests for mediation/United States. (To review tables, click "show" in column 1)
Done (5) "contiguous territory", "geographical sense", "within framework", US "definition" includes territories & possessions to define the US homeland
Done (3) "encompasses", "composed", "a part of" the US
Done (5) two define “United States” with, two enumerate 5 major territories, one included 5 major territories equally as a “state” for purposes of the law
Done (3) “includes”, “officially a part of”, "US fed'l system”
1 omits insular terr & poss
1 omits DC & terr & poss
50 states, DC, terr. & poss. (8 sources)
5 USG sources omit possessions
3 omit possessions
1 omits insular terr & poss
1 omits DC & terr & poss
Mediation sources deliberation
The mediation consensus was arrived at not only by a numerical count of sources, but also taking into consideration geographical extent as national jurisdiction, territory formally claimed internationally, homeland security and definitions of the "United States" found in law, proclamation and international reports.
The “United States" defined in a geographic sense is, "any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, any possession…” Homeland Security Public Law 107-296 Sec.2.(16)(A), Presidential Proclamation of national jurisdiction , US State Department Common Core report to United Nations Human Rights Committee 
The quick reasons I can think of why this isn't good: The U.S. changed its borders many times other than these; the cost is irrelevant without accounting for inflation; the area doesn't add up to anything else in the article; it likely doesn't take into account losses, like with the Webster-Ashburton Treaty or the Treaty of 1818; it ignores substantial but past holdings like the Philippines; it is way too much detail for too little payoff in an already-overlarge article; it's vastly better handled in other articles; and the sourcing, to a 1972 edition of Rand McNally, is, to put it mildly, curious. --Golbez (talk) 19:31, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
I agree. The chart is incomplete, it does not cover all acquisitions and ignores cessions. No reason why the Panama Canal Zone is mentioned, but not Guantanamo Bay, for example, or why the annual amount paid to Panama is excluded or the return of the zone to Panama. A lot of explanation is required but that puts it beyond the scope of this short article. TFD (talk) 19:43, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
I have an almost identical table in my 1967 Rand McNally World Atlas, which has notes detailing the Philippines and Panama, but not as part of the table. Leaving aside the question of lifting such contents wholesale, the table is otherwise questionable (its over-referencing; its Hawaiian area, which is slightly at variance with the 6,449 sqmi at Republic of Hawaii, or the 6,424 sqmi in my edition; and the omission of the 133 sqmi area for the Virgin Islands). However, the table is succinct in a way that the most-closely-related Wikipedia articles (Territorial evolution of the United States, linked from the this article's sectional hatnote, and United States territorial acquisitions, linked from "Territorial evolution..."), are not. Dhtwiki (talk) 07:01, 2 July 2016 (UTC)
I added a new table: U.S. territorial acquisitions and costs. It would be great to get help... there were slight variations on sq. mileage and dates between sources.
I see that you've learned to combine references, at the new article that you've created. I question such a creation, though. If it is appropriate, the table should probably be linked from one of the geography articles mentioned above, and not directly from here. There should also be some attempt to make sure your figures are in accordance with the numbers given on other pages. You might have a reasonable summary table eventually, but it's unnecessarily detailed for this article. Dhtwiki (talk) 07:03, 4 July 2016 (UTC)
The purchase amounts are not comparable because some were free market and others were coercive. After the Spanish American war, for example, the U.S. acquired territories and paid nominal amounts as part of a peace settlement. TFD (talk) 16:01, 4 July 2016 (UTC)
It's Northern Mariana Islands rather than Northern Marina Islands. I just don't know how to change maps.
In this case, it was an SVG, which are text documents that are displayed as images, so it was thankfully just a matter of searching for "Marina" and changing it. I've done so and uploaded it; thanks! --Golbez (talk) 13:54, 12 July 2016 (UTC)
In the recent discussion that I remember, we decided that the Internet, as a particular set of methods to network computers, can be fairly said to have originated in the US, even if fundamental concepts, and other implementations accomplishing similar goals, originated elsewhere. Dhtwiki (talk) 09:56, 16 July 2016 (UTC)
The lead currently says that the US "It leads the world in several measures of socioeconomic performance;" however, none of the lists linked there actually has the US at the top. Surely this wording is a little misleading? Vanamonde93 (talk) 05:08, 20 July 2016 (UTC)
Yes, a slight tweak is all I'm looking for. It is near the top of all those lists, and that is a fact relevant to the lead; we just need to not imply that it is number 1 in all those lists. I would prefer "ranks highly" for that reason; if we want to avoid weasel words, we can say "Ranks in the top-ten" but that is rather wordy. If no further objections are raised, I will add "ranks highly" in the next couple of days. Regards, Vanamonde93 (talk) 17:01, 20 July 2016 (UTC)