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Talk:Chelsea Manning

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Good articleChelsea 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
May 11, 2012Good article nomineeListed
August 23, 2013Good article reassessmentKept
Current status: Good article
Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
Information.svg To view an answer, click the [show] link to the right of the question.
Q1: Manning self-identified as a woman in 2009, and used the name Breanna. Why was the article title not moved at that time, and/or the pronoun changed?
It was revealed after the arrest in May 2010 that Manning had self-identified as a woman several times, and in November 2009 had discussed having surgery with a gender counsellor. In January 2010 Manning lived for one or more days as a woman while on leave in Boston, and in April 2010 wrote to a master sergeant about having experienced gender identity disorder. These concerns were repeated in May 2010 during chats that Manning apparently believed were private. Between being arrested in May 2010 and the recent statement on 22 August 2013, Manning signed documents as "Bradley Manning," and appeared willingly in male uniform for a recent photograph. Manning's lawyer referred to Breanna as an "alter ego," and the Bradley Manning Support Network continued to refer to Manning as "he" and Bradley.[1] Because of the lack of a public statement from Manning that she was transitioning, Wikipedia stayed with the male pronoun and the old title at that time.
Q2: Why is this article titled Chelsea Manning?
The first 2013 formal move discussion closed, and a committee of three uninvolved and experienced admins determined the move to Chelsea Manning should be reverted back to Bradley. Discussions since that close upheld that waiting 30 days was a good idea and the time should be spent making the case for a new move discussion. In a subsequent move discussion, consensus was against a proposal of "Private Manning" as the article title. A new discussion about moving the article back to "Chelsea Manning" started on September 30 and was closed on October 8 with a consensus to move the article to "Chelsea Manning". A majority of sources now use the name "Chelsea" when referring to Manning which would make it the common name.
Q3: Why does the article refer to Manning as she?
MOS:IDENTITY says: "Any person whose gender might be questioned should be referred to by the pronouns, possessive adjectives, and gendered nouns (for example 'man/woman', 'waiter/waitress', 'chairman/chairwoman') that reflect that person's latest expressed gender self-identification. This applies in references to any phase of that person's life, unless the subject has indicated a preference otherwise. [...] Direct quotations may need to be handled as exceptions (in some cases adjusting the portion used may reduce apparent contradictions, and ' [sic]' may be used where necessary)."
Q4: Shouldn't we insist on a legal name change before changing the title of the article?
Articles are titled based on the guidelines at Wikipedia:Article titles, and are usually the name the subject is most commonly known by, which is not necessarily their legal name; legal name usually has little bearing on the title of an article. A long discussion in October 2013 concluded that the article title should be "Chelsea Manning".
Q5: Why is this labeled as a good article? This article clearly no longer meets the criteria for that rating of its quality.
A request was made at Wikipedia:Good article reassessment/Chelsea Manning/1, which was speedily closed as "too premature". Per WP:GAR, "Requesting reassessment during a content dispute or edit war is usually inappropriate"; reassessment should instead "wait until the article stabilizes". A second request for reassessment was made on 12 September 2013, but was declined the following day. Seeing that some time has gone by however, there is nothing stopping an editor who wishes to see this article undergo another good article review.
Q6: Why is Manning in transgender categories?
The fact that Manning is transgender, and was a transgender inmate, a transgender soldier, etc, is notable and defining and has been discussed in multiple reliable sources (which are cited in the article). See Wikipedia:FAQ/Categorization for more information.
Q7: I feel that Wikipedia is being biased towards or against my beliefs here, what should I do?
Wikipedia policy mandates that articles reflect the content of reliable sources and be written from a neutral point of view, avoiding advocating for any particular perspective. Minority ideas and opinions must not be given undue weight or promotion in Wikipedia articles. It is impossible for coverage of real-world controversies to leave everyone happy – ideas change and adapt over time, and partisan viewpoints are typically entrenched and unable to self-assess bias – but seeking and maintaining neutrality is an ongoing process. Concerns over bias can be addressed with bold editing following the WP:BRD cycle or by starting a civil and constructive discussion at this talk page to suggest article improvements.
  1. ^ Rainey Reitman, "Feminist, trans advocates should support Bradley Manning", Bradley Manning Support Network Steering Committee, Washington Blade, February 23, 2012


Sex reassignment surgery is relevant to article[edit]

On October 20, 2018, User:Rab V reverted my addition of Chelsea Manning's announcement that she had, after years of fighting for it, finally undergone surgery. In his edit summary, Rab V made two points. First, it was "not directly stated in tweet what the surgery is." Any fair reading of Chelsea Manning would confirm that Manning has fought for only one type of surgery: Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS). Second, Rab V contends that "without secondary source it is difficult to establish how relevant a surgery would be to rest of article." Again, one need merely read this BLP, which mentions SRS four times, to establish that editorial consensus has long recognized the relevance of said surgery to Chelsea Manning. I request renewed discussion to affirm that this latest development is, obviously, about SRS and that it is, just as obviously, relevant to the BLP. KalHolmann (talk) 20:52, 20 October 2018 (UTC)

Still if it's not immediately obvious the exact nature of the surgery we shouldn't be making assumptions or we could run into OR issues. The surgery may be related to being trans and not be sexual reassignment surgery, for example orchiectomy or breast augmentation. My tendency is to be cautious around BLP issues for people's medical history as well. If it is very notable, it will probably show up in secondary sources that could also clarify the exact surgery since Manning is still often in the news. Might as well wait til then. PS I am not a man and we probably shouldn't gender wikipedia editors as if they are :) Rab V (talk) 21:01, 20 October 2018 (UTC)
The quote can be run after being led into by a reference to this story from earlier this month that she was to receive "gender transition surgery". Under MOS:LWQ, we can and should skip the wikilink in the quote itself. --Nat Gertler (talk) 21:19, 20 October 2018 (UTC)
@NatGertler: The Reuters story to which you link is more than two years old (Sep 14, 2016). As such, it is unrelated to this latest development and ought not to be added. KalHolmann (talk) 21:24, 20 October 2018 (UTC)
Whoops, sorry, the Google News results were listing that as an October 8, 2018 story for some reason. --Nat Gertler (talk) 22:32, 20 October 2018 (UTC)
@NatGertler: I also reject your reading of MOS:LWQ, which states: "…when linking within quotations, link only to targets that correspond to the meaning clearly intended by the quote's author." I submit that Manning's intended meaning is clear: she's alluding to sex reassignment surgery. KalHolmann (talk) 21:29, 20 October 2018 (UTC)
I'm not certain which surgery she is referring to exactlty so we are still at an impasse. It seems related to her status as trans but that still could imply several different possible surgeries. My understanding with regards to notability of surgery within the article, the issue that made it notable and widely discussed in the news was the legal fight the DoD had with her. That fight ended when she left their custody so isn't an issue now. My preference would still be for a reliable secondary source to clear up what surgery she had and help us make sure we aren't wading into BLP issues around someone's medical history. Rab V (talk) 00:20, 21 October 2018 (UTC)
@Rab v: See These. She received SRS. --Sharouser (talk) 16:50, 27 March 2019 (UTC)
 Done. New subsection 8.7 2018 has been added with citations to reliable sources to support this important development in Manning's gender transition, which did not end with her May 2017 release from military prison and that she herself chose to publicize in 2018. NedFausa (talk) 19:49, 18 December 2019 (UTC)

Who is "Nick" so many times cited in the article?[edit]

I was not able to find any mentioning or source here.... — Preceding unsigned comment added by Fraktik (talkcontribs) 09:20, 13 February 2019 (UTC)

Those are references to this book, which you will find listed in the references section:
  • Nicks, Denver. Private: Bradley Manning, WikiLeaks, and the Biggest Exposure of Official Secrets in American History. Chicago Review Press, 2012. ISBN 978-1610390613
--Nat Gertler (talk) 12:44, 13 February 2019 (UTC)

reading the article, 'Nicks' is referenced on so many occasions I think a minor rewrite is required to state who that is within the article. If you search for 'Nicks', you only get the answer you want at approx number 59/64 references. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2A00:23C5:A314:4A01:3908:2F83:4638:C546 (talk) 00:20, 13 April 2019 (UTC)

It would be better if the relevant entries in the "Citations" section were individually linked to the relevant entry in the "References" section. For example, the following is quite cumbersome to decipher (as Fraktik may agree).
168. ^ Nicks 2012, p. 179.
—DIV ( (talk) 06:09, 11 May 2019 (UTC))
P.S. Yes, there is already a general note, "Note: Sources that are used repeatedly or are central to the article are presented in shortened form in this section; for full citations for those sources, see the References section below. Other sources are cited in full in this section." but this is easily overlooked when jumping to a citation in the middle or end of the list (e.g. Chelsea_Manning#cite_note-168). —DIV ( (talk) 06:17, 11 May 2019 (UTC))

Chelsea Manning jailed for refusing to testify[edit]

I don't understand the subject well but this seems like a notable event


John Cummings (talk) 17:39, 8 March 2019 (UTC)

Also notable is the name of the Federal Court Judge who ordered the jail: District Court Judge Claude Hilton. Hilton was a Reagan nominee; in 2000 he was appointed by another Reagan nominee (Chief Justice Rehnquist) to serve on the secret, pro-govt FISC. These additional details may not be relevant to the main article, but surely the Judge's name is? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:32, 15 April 2019 (UTC)

Section headings for footnotes & bibliography[edit]

I propose the following.

  • The existing "Citations" heading be renamed "Footnotes". (In most articles it would be called "References", but I think that is also not quite right here). In some cases the entries are brief citations (e.g. "Nicks 2012, pp. 237, 246"), in other cases they comprise full references ("Manning, January 29, 2013, p. 2."), and in yet other cases they are instead notes (e.g. "Note: WikiLeaks tweeted on January 8, 2010, that [...]"). But in all cases they are indeed footnotes.
  • The existing "References" heading be renamed "Bibliography". While the entries in this section are indeed references, they do not comprise all of the references used for the article, contrary to what may be expected from the existing heading. A bibliography is generally understood as a more concise listing of the most pertinent source materials and/or recommended resources for further reading. Given the existing heading "Further reading" in a following section, readers should readily understand that the former meaning of bibliography is intended, not the latter meaning.

The Manual of Style is not prescriptive on this matter. —DIV ( (talk) 06:38, 11 May 2019 (UTC))

IMO the two "Note:"s should be made to use <ref name="foobar" group="note">, and put into a "Footnotes" or "Notes" section. Then the "Citations" section could be left as-is or renamed "References" if the section currently called "References" were renamed to "Bibliography" as you propose (or to "Further reading" as I have seen in some articles). -sche (talk) 23:23, 12 May 2019 (UTC)
Boldly done. -sche (talk) 23:31, 12 May 2019 (UTC)

Section 5.9 needs to be re-worded[edit]

The line "as Daniel Domscheit-Berg had previously done" seems to suggest that CM stated this line she die not and is totally separate and hardly relevant as DDB is not a USA citizen, is not in the US and was not subpoenaed, an international request and immunity for prosecution agreement does not constitute anything close to the same thing. Needs to be deleted immediately2404:4408:205A:4B00:4D43:12DF:80AE:4C08 (talk)

 Done. The preceding request was submitted on 25 May 2019. As of 17 Dec 2019, "as Daniel Domscheit-Berg had previously done" does not appear in the article. This request should therefore be considered completed. NedFausa (talk) 20:00, 16 December 2019 (UTC)