Talk:Autism Speaks

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Lede[edit]

The lede on this article is badly in need of a rewrite. Too much history is included and should be its own section. I propose it to be more clearly written as something like this... "Autism Speaks is an autism advocacy organization in the United States that sponsors autism research and conducts awareness and outreach activities aimed at families, governments, and the public. It was founded in February 2005 by Bob Wright, vice chairman of General Electric, and his wife Suzanne, a year after their grandson Christian was diagnosed with autism. An Autism Rights advocate named Elizabeth Picciuto accused the organization of treating autism as a disease that needs to be cured, rather than a difference that needs to be understood and accepted." The mention of Picciuto could be removed but I do think that some clear mention of the controversy of this organization needs to be in the lede of this article. Everything else should be in the body of the article. I'm not familiar enough with the controversy to be confident to write it correctly, but support that it should be in the lede.Sgerbic (talk) 05:19, 6 April 2017 (UTC)

I agree with Sgerbic. The lede is too wordy. A reference to the article written by Elizabeth Picciuto should be included under the Controversies heading. Boneso (talk) 11:47, 6 April 2017 (UTC)
I'm wondering if this article should be used, or possibly the story has been picked up by other media sources http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2017/04/what_we_can_learn_from_william_shatner_s_twitter_meltdown.htmlSgerbic (talk) 20:19, 6 April 2017 (UTC)
I'm going to go bold and have a whack at the lede. Very open to discussion if there are better ideas.Sgerbic (talk) 21:13, 6 April 2017 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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POV editing[edit]

JzG apparently has a strong opinion on this. Unfortunately is shows in their edits.

Rather than flipping to a strong POV on this article, which they consider to be [[1] "more neutral"], we need to slow down a bit and take this one piece at a time.

For the first bit: The organization is "controversial" we are told, which was sourced. The source, however, does not say the organization is controversial. The source says that an actress said that "Some of her autistic fans" said it was controversial "with some". If an actress said that some of her paleo-dieting fans said that bacon is health food, should Wikipedia say that bacon is health food? Clearly not. - SummerPhDv2.0 13:04, 16 September 2018 (UTC)

  • If there's a POV here, it's your persistent whitewashing of it. Not only removing content from the article, but also from the talk pages - way beyond WP:TPO might permit. Andy Dingley (talk) 13:08, 16 September 2018 (UTC)
Yes, Andy Dingley, I removed an off-topic rant three years ago.[2] If you'd like to take it to AN/I, I'd love to discuss the finer points of it with the wild accusations and personal attacks you felt were required in response.[2] Yes, an actress heard from someone that someone else considers the organization to be controversial. The addition to the article did not say that. It restated the author's friend's opinion as a fact. - SummerPhDv2.0 23:56, 16 September 2018 (UTC)
You've been whitewashing here for nine years, as long as I've seen the article. Andy Dingley (talk) 00:09, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
This page is for discussing improvements to the article. I removed someone's off-topic rant here three years ago and now I am discussing content. Feel free to join the discussion of the content here. If you feel strongly that I am whitewashing the article, I strongly encourage you to take the issue to AN/I. - SummerPhDv2.0 00:56, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
  • I don't have a strong POV on this, people with autism do. Autism Speaks has engaged in outright quackery for much of its existence. I cited some of that, and you removed it. Why woudl you rmeove, for example, the fact that they supported the bogus MMR-autism link long after it was debunked? Guy (Help!) 22:28, 16 September 2018 (UTC)
JzG, Perhaps we disagree about what constitutes a "strong opinion". You felt the need to tell me the organization is "a bunch of antivaxers who push abusive pseudoscience". That is your opinion and it seems to me that you feel fairly strongly about it. Your mileage may vary.
You added material. Your POV is not "more neutral", so I reverted you. You restored your opinion with a bad citation, I reverted you again. The normal course of editing is bold, revert, discuss, not "bold, revert, restore, revert, restore, discuss."
I have asked you to partialize, starting with the first piece. That someone, somewhere told an actress something is not encyclopedic in the least. That the person speaking with the author said something does not establish it as true or relevant. That you believe it to be true adds nothing. - SummerPhDv2.0 00:50, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
I think you are trying to WP:OWN the article. Guy (Help!) 06:59, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
I think you want this to go to AN/I. Sorry, I'm going to take it one issue at a time. I've added a 3RR warning to your talk page. - SummerPhDv2.0 16:19, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
That was droll, given that you reverted three times and engaged in argumentum ad hominem and I did not. Guy (Help!) 17:09, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
  • I think some of the language JzG used should be toned down, but there is a lot of criticism of this group out there. I had to listen to my pediatrician rant about their promotion of antivaxxer claims just a few months ago when I said something (something I got from this article, mind) complimentary about them. I think that some of the controversies do need to be reflected in the lede. ᛗᛁᛟᛚᚾᛁᚱPants Tell me all about it. 16:55, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
I am not taking a position on whether the article should say the organization is pure evil, the salvation for all of humankind or somewhere in between. I am saying the article should reflect what independent reliable sources say about the topic. What any individual editor thinks of the group[3] is not relevant here. Neither is your pediatrician's opinion, should she decide to edit this article. We also should not be particularly interested in an actress's friends' friends opinions either.
Independent reliable sources tell us whether someone is a white supremacist, a film was hated by critics but loved by fans, etc. They can also be counted on to tell us whether a group is widely considered to be "controversial". Blogs and fourth hand reports about the opinions of a couple of anonymous people are not significant. - SummerPhDv2.0 03:08, 18 September 2018 (UTC)

"Controversial"[edit]

We do not have a source saying Autism Speaks is a "controversial organization", such that it would be identified as such in the first sentence. Currently, this is sourced to an actress saying that "Some of her autistic fans quickly interceded. They told her that Autism Speaks was controversial, even hated, within some segments of the self-advocate community..." While no one has yet explained how this fourth hand opinion merits inclusion, to be accurate, rather than saying it is a "controversial organization", we should say that "according to an actress, some of her anonymous fans say that some of their friends say the organization is controversial".

If you feel that is material for the identifying statement, we'd certainly need to label every medical organization and treatment as "controversial", given that there are people who dispute everything. A spherical Earth? That's a "controversial" idea. - SummerPhDv2.0 16:19, 17 September 2018 (UTC)

Yes we do. More than one, actually, it's also included in some of the other sources. Guy (Help!) 17:07, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
Honestly. When I wrote that we had one source saying that an actress's friends' friends said it was controversial. That was the only source. It was and remains an absurd source for such a sweeping claim and should be removed.
The sources you have added now are, IMO, sufficient to say it is controversial. It does not belong in the lead sentence, however. We can easily find two sources that state that The Wizard of Oz is the subject of an urban legend connecting it to Dark Side of the Moon. We do not, however, put that in the lead sentence because the overwhelming majority of sources do not call it "...a 1939 American musical fantasy film produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer thought to be connected to Dark Side of the Moon." The overwhelming majority of reliable sources -- such as those currently in the article do not describe the organization as "controversial". Your current standard would have us list every president of the United States as controversial in the lead sentence, along with Elvis Presley, Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, Target, Pink Floyd, NASA, guns, God, organic farming, etc. - SummerPhDv2.0 18:54, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
Tornado chaser has now removed the source citing an actress's friends' friends. Is this acceptable to you JzG?
The overwhelming majority of reliable sources -- such as those currently in the article do not describe the organization as "controversial". - SummerPhDv2.0 19:56, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
As there has been no further discussion, I ma removing the contentious label from the lead. The "Controversies" section remains. - SummerPhDv2.0 15:34, 5 October 2018 (UTC)

"Autism activists...criticize Autism Speaks"[edit]

The source cited does not say anything of the sort. Rather, it discusses those who do not want a "cure" for autism, then it says Autism Speaks has clashed with other organizations on funding priorities and that "activists" are trying to hijack a hashtag to criticize the organization. As written, we've converted an unknown number of "activists" trying to take over a hashtag to the universal "autism activists", who have a unified goal and all criticize the organization.

Previously, this section used the vague but more accurate "some autism activists...have criticized", also poorly sourced to the vague claim that some tried to take over a hashtag. You're creating a movement out of a hashtag.

The organization's response was excised without explanation. In it's place, we're treated to simply that they dropped the word "cure", then we go back to rehash that they "supported research into the discredited theory". We cite a statement by a resigning director. Singer resigned from the board of an organization and started a competing organization. If you think that makes her an independent reliable source, you are mistaken. - SummerPhDv2.0 16:19, 17 September 2018 (UTC)

There are multiple cited sources to support the entirely factual claim that many autism advocates are critical of Autism Speaks and its "cure" narrative. See also https://parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2015/06/04/speaking-out-against-autism-speaks-even-if-it-means-no-ice-cream/, https://www.forbes.com/sites/emilywillingham/2013/11/13/why-autism-speaks-doesnt-speak-for-me/, even former staff http://jerobison.blogspot.com/2013/11/i-resign-my-roles-at-autism-speaks.html. This criticism is a fact, I have no particular position on its validity, but I do have a position on suppressing it in the article. Guy (Help!) 17:06, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
Please slow down and discuss what I am actually saying, rather than what you fear someone might say. I have not said we should "suppress" anything. I am questioning the wording.
"Autism activists" is a very broad term that actually would include those working with and for Autism Speaks. I rather doubt you intend to say that those raising money for and employed by Autism Speaks criticize Autism speaks.
The {{who}} maintenance tag you removed is for "After passages mentioning general groups (such as "many scientists") that could be made more specific by naming (and citing sources for) specific individuals." The modifier you removed -- "Some" -- while imprecise and part of the same problem is better than the sweeping phrase you are defending.
Incidentally, please do not remove maintenance tags merely because you feel they are inappropriate in your article. - SummerPhDv2.0 19:08, 17 September 2018 (UTC)
What you are saying is WP:IDONTLIKEIT. I hear it loud and clear. Guy (Help!) 08:50, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
No, you seem to either not understand or not care that you are misrepresenting what the sources say. - SummerPhDv2.0 19:54, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
The organizations response was cited only to Autism Speaks itself, and is likely WP:UNDUE if no secondary sources can be found talking about this, although the edit summary was misleading and uninformative, I ultimately agree with removing this.
I did restore the word "some"[4], as this makes clear that treating autism as a disease is not opposed by all autism activists. Tornado chaser (talk) 13:11, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
Even Autism Speaks now seem to have dropped any claim that it's a disease, and with it support for biomedical interventions. The core problem with AS, and the reason that many advocates dislike them so much, is that their sponsorship of biomed interventions has lent a spurious legitimacy to a lot of quackery. Guy (Help!) 15:00, 18 September 2018 (UTC)
IDONTLIKE using Wikipedia's voice to make claims unsupported by reliable sources. You don't like Autism Speaks. "Some" is not perfect, but removing it made the article worse not better. - SummerPhDv2.0 19:34, 18 September 2018 (UTC)

"It has been characterized"[edit]

Yes, it has, in someone's blog. This is a self-published source. The blogger is allowed to say whatever they'd like in their blog, but not here. - SummerPhDv2.0 16:19, 17 September 2018 (UTC)

This blog sourced material was removed by another editor. Is that acceptable to you, JzG? - SummerPhDv2.0 19:57, 18 September 2018 (UTC)

Clarify Light It Up Blue[edit]

Footnote 35: "Light It Up Blue was not created or owned by Autism speaks, although they have driven awareness of the initiative across the US" However, I could not find this in the citation given and I also couldn't find anything to back it up. Light It Up Blue is controversial mainly due to its association with Autism Speaks. Could it be confirmed whether it was actually created or owned by them? Do they currently own it? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 72.76.163.6 (talk) 09:40, 1 April 2019 (UTC)

It says on the Autism Speaks website that they did create Light it Up Blue https://www.autismspeaks.org/world-autism-month-faq72.76.163.6 (talk) 18:50, 6 April 2019 (UTC)