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Talk:Chelsea Manning

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Good article Chelsea Manning has been listed as one of the Social sciences and society good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Article milestones
Date Process Result
May 11, 2012 Good article nominee Listed
August 23, 2013 Good article reassessment Kept
In the news A news item involving this article was featured on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "In the news" column on January 19, 2017.
Current status: Good article
Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Information.svg To view an answer, click the [show] link to the right of the question.

Date of arrest incorrect[edit]

The date of arrest is listed as May 20th 2007, whereas it should be May 20th 2010.

there was an edit request[edit]

I fixed the info they suggested but there's something wrong with the section. Not sure how to edit it. ValarianB (talk) 13:13, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

Hello ValarianB: could you be more specific about whats wrong with the section. regards, DRAGON BOOSTER 13:26, 31 January 2017 (UTC).
There was a section above this with an edit request but the header wasn't working, I couldn't reply directly to it. Looks like you fixed it. ValarianB (talk) 13:31, 31 January 2017 (UTC)

Should the name "Bradley Manning" appear prominently?[edit]

The concern has been answered, no need to drag this out any further. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 14:20, 2 February 2017 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

I understand that Manning is still known as "Bradley Manning" to many people, but many trans people who have changed their name are uncomfortable with their name assigned at birth. Do we know how comfortable Manning is with her name given at birth appearing in the first sentence of this article, as well as in the info box to the right? I know at least one trans woman who believes that this name shouldn't appear in the article at all. In the trans community, the name "Bradley" is known as Manning's "dead name," and being referred to by that name is often seen as hostile misgendering.

As with the photo appearing on the page, I think Wikipedia should go by how the subject wants her name assigned at birth to appear (or not appear) in this article. (talk) 05:31, 2 February 2017 (UTC)

As a trans person myself I know where you're coming from, but the current guideline at MOS:BIRTHNAME is "In the case of transgender and non-binary people, birth names should be included in the lead sentence only when the person was notable prior to coming out." Manning was definitely notable prior to her transition. For other issues surrounding how her gender and name are described in this article, please see the FAQ at the top of this talk page. Funcrunch (talk) 06:06, 2 February 2017 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.


I question why Chelsea Manning's 1/17/17 Commutation by Pres. Obama isn't at the top (nor the bottom) of her Wikipedia page. If it is there, it was not easy for me to find it, but hope I just missed it.

(Don't believe it's necessary to cite sources for this common knowlegde.)

Joyce S. Tucson, AZ (talk) 18:56, 5 February 2017 (UTC)Joyce S. Tucson, AZ

Joyce S. Tucson, AZ, it's in the last sentence of the fourth paragraph in the intro. --NeilN talk to me 19:02, 5 February 2017 (UTC)

Can someone change the part under "Commutation" where it says that she criticized President Obama? That quote is somewhat out of context and the column was not so much critical of him as it was expressing her dissatisfaction with his opposition's stubbornness and refusal to compromise. I'd probably say something like "On January 26, 2017, in her first column for The Guardian since the commutation, Manning lamented that President Obama's political opponents consistently refused to compromise, resulting in "very few permanent accomplishments" during his time in office. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:56, 10 May 2017‎ (UTC)

I agree. I don't think the current text in our article accurately reflects the tone and content of Manning's article. Kaldari (talk) 18:27, 10 May 2017 (UTC)
I also agree, edited the article to reflect the actual tone. BananaCarrot152 (talk) 19:29, 10 May 2017 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 18 May 2017[edit]

This is not a neutral article when it fails to detail Manning calling a military leader a dyke and bragging about punching them in the face. That is an important issue in regards to Manning's demonstrated homophobia, and it should not be allowed to be written out Manning's history.

Chat Logs:

(01:45:18 PM) bradass87: i punched a dyke in the phace…

(01:46:46 PM) bradass87: i got sick of these dykes and their drama… it was worse than “The L Word”… Estrogin (talk) 16:42, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

Not done: Please propose a specific change you would like made, such as "change X to Y", "delete x", or "add X before/after Y". —KuyaBriBriTalk 16:51, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

New picture[edit]

How would we feel about replacing the bio picture with this one? [1] Artw (talk) 17:17, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

As long as it is in the public domain or permission is given. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 17:23, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
We should probably get something a bit more direct, but this tweet suggests appropriate permission has been given. MaxHarmony (talk) 17:45, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
While I would welcome using this recent photo of Manning, I very much doubt that the indirect tweet cited grants legal public domain status on this image. We're not even sure who the photographer is (likely not Manning herself). Funcrunch (talk) 17:49, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
I have gone ahead and removed the image from the article until we can get something more direct. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 17:52, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
See CC BY-SA license: Webster (talk / contribs) 21:21, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

Hi first time I've done a talk page, confused about the format, sorry if I do it wrong. What do people think about this new image? JacobK (talk) 5:23 PM, Thursday, May 18, 2017

I just had the same thought and was trying to edit the Talk page and ran into a conflict with this comment! TimCamber (talk) 17:26, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
As I said above it comes down to fair usage or not. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 17:29, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
Oh my goodness this is clear fair use. Please don't be internet lawyers about this. ChrissMari (talk) 18:44, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
If I wanted to I could claim to be "Chelsea's team" on twitter, this isn't going to cut it. We need a solid source for permission here just as we would for any other picture of a living person that may not be in the public domain. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 18:47, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
As I mentioned on the image talk page, I sent a direct message to the person posting the tweet, with links to this page and the image page, asking about permissions. She said she would forward my request to Manning's publicist. (The issue is not "fair use" here, the image was uploaded as "public domain" to Commons. Fair use images are not allowed on Commons.) Funcrunch (talk) 19:05, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

The ACLU said on their Facebook page that the photographer was Tim Travers Hawkins who I believe is a filmmaker doing a documentary about Chelsea. ACLU Facebook Page. Larla77 (talk) 19:31, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

@Larla77: I found Tim's Twitter profile but he doesn't seem to accept direct messages, and his web site appears to have been taken over by another party. I'd rather not post on the ACLU Facebook thread publicly, but if someone else wants to contact him about getting permission to use this image, he can submit this form to Funcrunch (talk) 19:41, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
Can we at least remove the current image in the meantime (either with no image or the sketch of her)? Including a picture of her from prior to her transition is very disrespectful to her. Emilystremel (talk) 20:54, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
@Emilystremel: See the FAQ at the top of this page. Manning said that she was pleased with the photo that's currently on this page, and fine with it being used until a newer one could be provided. Funcrunch (talk) 20:59, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

FYI this is all worked out now; the photographer has confirmed the CC licensing of the new photo. See discussion on Commons for details. Funcrunch (talk) 14:42, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

Good work everybody! Artw (talk) 15:44, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

Obtaining a new public domain image[edit]

As she is out of prison now, could someone perhaps comment on her Instagram and ask her to upload a public domain image to Wikimedia Commons that could be used of her presenting as female to replace her old, male-presenting image? I'm sure she'd be quite eager to get the old image replaced. Asarelah (talk) 18:36, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

@Asarelah: See discussion in the above section. Funcrunch (talk) 19:06, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

New photo for infobox[edit]

Now that Manning has taken a new high quality picture of herself since her release, should the infobox photo be changed to reflect her current self? Nee1927 (talk) 19:32, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

Oops, just saw the other thread. Disregard this. Nee1927 (talk) 19:32, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 18 May 2017[edit]

Change the 2012 photo of Chelsea Manning to the/a photo she posted upon her release, due to her transition and 5 year difference VBudler (talk) 19:45, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

@VBudler: See discussion above. Funcrunch (talk) 19:49, 18 May 2017 (UTC)
Not to naval gaze here, but it's interesting how many folks are interested in changing the picture. NickCT (talk) 20:56, 18 May 2017 (UTC)

Reference to sex change[edit]

Is it there anywhere a reference to him/her stating or mentioning about his/her intention of switching sex prior to being incarcerated? [conspiracy]It came out of the blue for many. It could be interpreted by other whistleblowers as a threat [/conspiracy]. It's just a question, cause probably he mentioned it way before. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:38, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

Yes, see the article's section Chelsea_Manning#Contact_with_gender_counselor. BananaCarrot152 (talk) 21:24, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

Preview image[edit]

Why does the preview image still show her old picture when I post a link Facebook? Does it just take a while for the data to update? Asarelah (talk) 12:29, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

Clear your browser history or cookies maybe? That's odd. ValarianB (talk) 13:09, 19 May 2017 (UTC)
Asarelah: When you share a link on Facebook, Facebook checks the site and determines the image to use and keeps that data cached for a while. It may take a couple of days before Facebook's image cache is updated. Nothing Wikipedia can really do about that, I'm afraid. —Tom Morris (talk) 16:06, 19 May 2017 (UTC)
You can force a rescrape here: [2] - just did and it seems to have done the trick? Artw (talk) 16:18, 19 May 2017 (UTC)

Title is Incorrect[edit]

Please read the FAQ regarding name and gender

[Comment deleted per WP:BLPTALK.]

Not to sound rude as you are entitled to your opinion, but why do you care so much? Anyway to answer your question, check the FAQ at the top of the page. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 00:52, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
With all due respect, I would suggest that you review relevant scientific literature, as your claim that she is "delusional" is utterly false. Even if it were true, though, the fact remains that her legal name is Chelsea, and the vast majority of reliable sources refer to her as such, so there's no reason to change the name of this article. MaxHarmony (talk) 02:02, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Please review the FAQs at the top of the page which explains the rationale (and community consensus) behind the title. – S. Rich (talk) 16:17, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Replying to these kind of comments can also inform those who are in the dark about Manning. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 16:31, 20 May 2017 (UTC)
Actually, the relevant scientific literature says that males have penises and females have vaginas. It's basic pre-high school knowledge. If you don't know this common knowledge, perhaps you should crack open an anatomy textbook. The Wikipedia FAQ regarding gender is complete nonsense I suspect was written by people suffering from gender identity disorder and should be disregarded. It is unfortunate Wikipedia suffers from such a far-left extremist bias.— Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)

Semi-protected edit request on 25 May 2017[edit]

The following sentence on the top section of the article has the wrong date.

"On January 17, 2017, President Barack Obama commuted Manning's sentence to a total of seven years of confinement dating from the date of arrest (May 20, 2010) by military authorities."

Manning was arrested on May 27, 2010. Not May 20. Can someone fix this please? Thanks! :) (talk) 23:47, 25 May 2017 (UTC)

 Done – the difficulty is in the "7 year confinement" calculation and the sources for that figure. You are correct that Manning was probably arrested on 27 May because the Charge Sheets ("indictment") refer to wrongful acts that took place on 27 May. But because the sources for the 7 year commutation refer to 20 May, we are stuck with them. If the sources can be cleared up, and/or the sentence re-worded, the change might work. – S. Rich (talk) 01:06, 26 May 2017 (UTC) Reworded IOT avoid date conflict. 01:22, 26 May 2017 (UTC)

Please semi-protect this talk page[edit]

It's important to know that many people edit this talk page saying that this article's title needs to be moved because they think transgenderism is just playing make-believe. Please semi-protect this talk page indefinitely; otherwise people will continue. Georgia guy (talk) 12:55, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

I don't think this is needed as there are trolls and people who legitimately believe in transgenderism being a birth defect. We aren't censored and have to answer these kinds of people the best we can. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 13:32, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
It seems that according to Wikipedia:Protection_policy#Article_talk_pages, it would be unlikely to get this talk page protected unless there was a huge torrent of trolls. It's probably easiest to just respond saying "No. Read the FAQ above." and hide it with {{hat}}{{hab}} tags (easier than deleting comments because some wikipedians don't like deleting comments from talk pages even if it's obvious trolling, and despite there being no rule against it). --ChiveFungi (talk) 14:25, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
I added a new Q&A to the FAQ above that should also answer the bias questions. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 15:07, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
For most comments, I agree with ChiveFungi; hat the section and point to the FAQ. But obvious trolling should really be deleted instead. Consider the impact on trans editors like myself who have to read this page. Funcrunch (talk) 15:37, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
per WP:DISC we aren't able to fully stop any given added content even if this page were protected. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 15:44, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
In the template at the top of this talk page (and many others) there is the notice "This is not a forum for general discussion of the article's subject." Comments of the variety "Men have penises, women have vaginas, end of story" do nothing to improve this Wikipedia article and do not belong on this talk page, even collapsed. This isn't about censorship. Funcrunch (talk) 15:59, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
I agree with you on that one, but not all comments are like that. I am saying that if this is having an impact on you then there isn't much that can be done. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 16:04, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
Of course not all comments are like that, which is why I'm fine with hatting some of them as I said. But obviously provocative comments that do nothing to improve the encyclopedia should be removed from talk pages. At least that much can be done. Funcrunch (talk) 16:07, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
Per the blurb explaining MOS:GENDERID: "Finally, please note that this talk page is not a forum. If material violating this guideline is repeatedly inserted or if there are other related issues, please report the issue to WT:LGBT or, in the case of living trans women, to WP:BLPN." Is this something that is worth doing at this point? BananaCarrot152 (talk) 16:35, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
@BananaCarrot152: Possibly; I'm not sure exactly what to ask at either of those forums though, in this case. Funcrunch (talk) 17:06, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
Given the latest edits, I have alerted WT:LGBT. I tried to word my post neutrally. Funcrunch (talk) 13:48, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
(edit conflict) I have edited and expanded the answer to also reflect that perceptions of bias can be in line with, or differ from, one's own beliefs. KnowledgeKid87 has reversed this tweak to the question. Input from editors on the question and answer is requested. EdChem (talk) 15:48, 13 June 2017 (UTC)
I'm fine with what you wrote, I wasn't aware of the tweak you made so my apologies. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 15:50, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

Dealing with talk page comments[edit]

For the preceding discussion, see Please semi-protect this talk page.

Per WP:BLPTALK talk pages of biographies of leaving persons must follow the same general rules that apply to WP:BLPs. This means that libel must be removed immediately, and that potentially libelous content may be discussed but should be linked to and not hosted on wikipedia. Further, “contentious material about living persons that is unsourced or poorly sourced and not related to making content choices should be removed, deleted, or oversighted, as appropriate.”

Per WP:REMOVEUNCIVIL “derogatory comments about another contributor may be removed by any editor.” These two edits certainly fall into this category (and were rightly removed - that IP has also been suspended).

The following conclusions were made by the Arbitration Committee regarding previous conflicts on this page and it’s talk page:

7) An editor must not accuse another of misbehavior without evidence, especially when the accusations are repeated or severe. If accusations must be made, they should be raised, with evidence, on the user-talk page of the editor they concern or in the appropriate forums.

10) All living people who are subjects of Wikipedia content are entitled to the protections of the biographies of living persons policy. An editor's personal dislike of the subject or their actions does not abrogate in any way the usual protections of the policy.

11) The biographies of living persons policy applies to all references to living persons throughout Wikipedia, including the titles of articles and pages and all other portions of any page.

Moving forward I propose that we make a more concerted effort to remove comments which assert that the subject of the article, or any living person mentioned in it, or an editor is delusional or mentally ill for thinking that Manning is a women. Similar remove any personal attacks. A warning should also be posted on that editors talk page. Following that reasoning, these edits [3] [4] should be removed. (From their edits, @Srich32977: seems to disagree. Perhaps you could add your perspective?)

However, I do not believe that polite comments made in good faith should be sanctioned, even if they question the name of the article or the use of female pronouns etc. These comments are about the content in the article and show a desire to make wikipedia better. I think it is best to err on the side of caution and assume good faith whenever possible. If the comments are discussed directly in the FAQ then collapsing them and linking to the FAQ seems like the best solution.

Lastly I oppose semi-protecting this talk page as there have been several valuable semi-protected edit requests. BananaCarrot152 (talk) 16:39, 17 June 2017 (UTC)

Agreed with everything above. I've been posting warnings and discretionary sanctions notices on editors' talk pages when appropriate regarding this and other gender-related articles. Funcrunch (talk) 17:42, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Agree. Trolling and personal attacks should be removed, not replied to, per WP:BLPTALK and AGF is not a suicide pact. Kaldari (talk) 22:47, 17 June 2017 (UTC)

The recent IP edits are blatantly offensive per the edit summaries (which should be removed). The [3] and [4] edits referred to above are not so bad as to get bent out of shape over, and they got polite replies. I do not think labeling polite edits as trolling will be helpful. Besides, this talk page gets archived quickly enough so questions like "why is he a she?" etc. will get resolved and filed out of sight. – S. Rich (talk) 23:11, 17 June 2017 (UTC)

[5] is clearly a BLP violation. [6] is a personal attack against the editors who wrote the Wikipedia policies. The first one definitely needs to be removed. I'm ambivalent about the second one. Kaldari (talk) 23:50, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
I want to add that there is a difference between trolling, and asking why x is the way it is which would relate to the article. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 03:41, 18 June 2017 (UTC)
True, but see also: Sea lioning. Kaldari (talk) 04:24, 26 June 2017 (UTC)
I trust editors to use their best judgement here. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 13:30, 26 June 2017 (UTC)
Worth noting [6] is also a general attack on trans wikipedia editors, saying that views from editors suspected of being trans should be disregarded. Rab V (talk) 21:33, 26 June 2017 (UTC)

It is not, for the record, Wikipedia's place to simply deny the validity of transgender identity — medical science confirms that it's a real thing, and the only known treatment for it is some form of gender transition — so it's not the role of a neutral encyclopedia, or contributors to it, to pretend that's not true. Our general concept articles about transgender issues can certainly document any controversy about this — but they cannot simply assert that it's not a real thing as if that were some kind of given, and individual BLPs of individual transgender people are most especially not the place to wage that war. Our job is to err on the side of respect for our article subjects, inclusive of their right to define their own gender identity — our job is not to placate people who aren't Chelsea Manning in their views on the validity or invalidity of the entire phenomenon of transgender identity, and our job is not to simply call it a psychological delusion as the commenters in question did. Medical science accepts that it's a real thing, and that's that — the general concept article transgender can document the existence of alternative views on the matter, but individual biographies of individual people aren't the place for it any more than individual biographies of individual Ismailis would be the appropriate platform for debating whether Ismailism is a branch of Islam or a heretic sect (which has also, inappropriately, happened more than once.) Bearcat (talk) 19:30, 30 June 2017 (UTC)

I would like to thank those taking the time to discuss these problems. Just reading a couple of the examples I find them childish but at the same time too upsetting to want to engage with or talk about, so am glad I feel I can walk away and let others safely handle the problem. Thanks -- (talk) 19:44, 30 June 2017 (UTC)

Recent material to add[edit]

I have not been a contributor to this article and am not sure how her press appearances are being incorporated into it but believe there should be reference somewhere to this feature article and this movie. - phi (talk) 10:34, 2 July 2017 (UTC)

Sex Reassignment Surgery[edit]

On July 10, 2017, Guy Benson, political editor of, posted "Chelsea Manning: 'The Wealthy' Don't Pay Taxes, So We Must Force Them To, or Something", discussing the "gender-reassignment treatment and surgery [emphasis added] she received courtesy of taxpayers while incarcerated."

Under Chelsea_Manning#Gender_transition (2016), we incorporate the ACLU's September 2016 announcement that "the army will be granting Manning's request for gender transition surgery." In the next sentence, we add that a month later, "Manning's attorneys reported that her military doctor, Dr. Ellen Galloway, refused Manning's request to change the gender on her military records to female." Since the source article does not mention surgery, it's unknown how, if at all, Dr. Galloway's refusal affected the Army's promise to provide Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS).

In January 2017, Charlie Savage wrote in The New York Times that, according to Manning, she had not seen a surgeon.

In the ensuing four months, I saw no news story that Manning had received SRS. And of course on May 17, 2017, she was released from prison.

Ordinarily, I wouldn't cite a lone source on such an important development. Yet on July 10, 2017, via her verified Twitter account, Chelsea Manning retweeted the Townhall article to her 246K followers, with a comment but conspicuously not denying Townhall's thesis that "Taxpayers Financed Her Gender Reassignment Surgery."

Coming from Manning herself, this not-quite-confirmation suggests, to me anyway, that Townhall may be accurate in disclosing that she has received SRS.

Since we extensively cover her Hormone Replacement Therapy, I presume medical confidentiality would not preclude similar coverage of her reliably sourced SRS.

Still, I think it's prudent to wait until this story is picked up elsewhere, or until Manning herself more definitively verifies it, before wading in. I'd appreciate guidance from more experienced editors. KalHolmann (talk) 05:31, 11 July 2017 (UTC)

Calling her response a "not-quite-confirmation" is a real stretch. Yes, we should wait until a reliable source reports something before we include it in a person's biography. They're clearly jumping to some conclusions and haven't done any basic fact-checking. (If they had, they might have seen that Chelsea tweeted, the day before the article was published, that her transition has cost taxpayers a total of $600 - not $50k). --ChiveFungi (talk) 12:59, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
@ChiveFungi Thanks for your response. For future reference, are you saying that is categorically not a reliable source as defined by Wikipedia? KalHolmann (talk) 13:33, 11 July 2017 (UTC)
WP:RS is a good resource for these sorts of questions (regarding wether a source is reliable or not). As I understand it, wikipedia rarely categorizes entire news media services as "not reliable", but editors should verify reliability on a case by case basis. If sources contradict each other, extra care should be taken, especially for biographies of living persons. For instance, just because the New York Times says something doesn't make it true even if the Times is often reliable. BananaCarrot152 (talk) 14:06, 11 July 2017 (UTC)