Talk:Hank Hanegraaff

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Controversies website[edit]

Much of the "controversies" section is documented here: [1] june 22, 2006

What? Nothing about the several money scandals, nothing about the documented plagiarism, nothing about the attempts to meet in the spirit of Matthew 18, nothing about the lack of board meeting minutes where he was allegedly given the reins of CRI. But it does give a photo of his book along with a list of the chapters? This article has been pared down to a propaganda piece.

It's more than obvious that this page was written by a Hanegraaff fan. I'm surprised the God-hating pagans who dominate Wikipedia have let this go. Hanegraaff's character is worse than suspect; his sins and crimes are all over the Net... but not here... how weird. Note that even the bias against the "Word of Faith" segment was even allowed to stand, the common SLUR of "word-faith" being used and not corrected. That term shows an undeniable POV. (talk) 19:38, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

Bible Answer Man[edit]

I have listened to Hank's radio program nearly every day for about two years. His talkshow spends a great deal of time tearing down other denominations rather than teaching Christian doctrine. He is heavily biased against the LDS church and frequently devotes entire programs or, as he did recently, an entire week to the maligning of the LDS faith. His information is gleaned almost solely from anti-LDS writers and frequently contains misquotes, statements taken out of context, exagerated claims, and complete misrepresentations of LDS doctine, history, and lifestyle. A good example is his statement that Joseph Smith prophesied that the second coming would happen by the year 1891. This conclusion was drawn from the revelation found in Doctrine and Covenants section 130:15-17. A simple reading of the text will reveal that Joseph made no such prediction. Hank's lack of regard concerning truth and his "the ends justify the means" attitude should make anyone question both his ethics and his accuracy.(--Russell63 (talk) 06:39, 23 January 2008 (UTC))

The previous criticism is a crock. I notice that Russell complains about Hannegraaf's opinions on only one religion, so it really isn't hard to guess the religion that Russell is a member of. Hannegraff isn't supposed to be neutral on LDS doctrine. Any regular listener to the program would know that Hannegraaf, along with other Christians have extensively documented the differences between Christianity and Mormonism. A Christian, like myself, finds a great deal of Christian doctrine on Hank's show. Of course, non Christians will not recognize the same emphasis. Also, clicking on his user name will show that Russell63 is not a legitimate registered user of Wikipedia.


Perhaps someone would like to add a link from the Books section to the following review of "The Last Disciple"? I know Hank personally as well as having been best friends with his oldest daughter. They are a good family, good, strong Christian people and if Hank shows any distemper I'm sure it is deserved. He is a very intelligent man and very strong in his convictions and loyal to his family and loved ones. We should all strive to be as good! I'm sad to see disparaging comments regarding Hank and his operation of CRI - sounds like people are quick to judge and criticize when perhaps they don't have all the facts. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:48, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

Sadly, we knew Hank "personally" once too. If you want to know the real story, checkout Hard Questions for the Bible Answer Man by Jay Howard. —Preceding unsigned comment added by TruthBringsLight (talkcontribs) 07:13, 16 January 2010 (UTC)
I reverted your recent edits. The Howard books appears to be self published and so is not an adequate source for Wikipedia's purpose. Articles on living people need to be particularly careful about providing accurate and reliable sources about anything that might be considered controversial. JonHarder talk 23:49, 17 January 2010 (UTC)

Isn't Wikipedia made up of "self-published" material? Maybe they should revisit that rule. Included this time is an article from the Los Angeles Times that supports Hard Questions for the Bible Answer Man by Jay Howard, a well-respected researcher in the field of Christian Apologetics. Hopefully, this article is not considered "self-published". :) —Preceding unsigned comment added by TruthBringsLight (talkcontribs) 08:05, 20 January 2010 (UTC)

You can read about why self published sources are not acceptable in the verifiability policy. Your sources are a book and a website. The book is by Jay Howard and published by "The Religious Research Project" which was founded and directed by Jay Howard. The website is run by family members of Walter Martin. These both are clearly self-published and not an acceptable source for something like this. Find the Times source; it may be better for this purpose. The links added at the bottom are contrary to the external links guideline. I will be undoing your changes again, until you find better sources. JonHarder talk 22:11, 21 January 2010 (UTC)

Paring Down[edit]

I pared down the criticisms section to something more pithy.

Here's how it looks now:

Although not subject to widespread criticism, some have accused CRI of paying Hanegraaff an "outlandish" salary (reportedly in excess of $500,000.) He's also been criticized for an alleged intemperate attitude toward his employees and for organizational mismanagement.

I removed the this last line -

"The criticisms, however, are not widespread, and are nowhere near as vocal as those involving the multi-million dollar salaries paid to televangelists."

Besides being bad english, it's sort of a judgment call as to whether or not criticisms against Hank are widespread. Who's to say? He's kind of a minor player thus so would his critics be. The rest of the sentence is poorly written and basically irrelevant. The people who criticize Hank for earning 500 Large don't care what televangelists make. They just think HE's making too much. :)

If anyone thinks I'm being unfair here by all means let me know. I just want to see the narrative stay on track.

Big Daddy 05:02, 9 September 2005 (UTC)

I have never heard of him, but I can understand that there might be criticism for his salary. Good edit. Providing criticism in the passive voice is sometimes considered bad form on wikipedia. I can say, "some people think he cheats on his taxes" but unless it's sourcesd it's just heresay. I think there's a wikiguidance on sourcing but I am too lazy to find it right now. You might want to take out the whole thing and just say how much money he makes with a news source to back you up. MPS 23:33, 9 September 2005 (UTC)

Too much hearsay[edit]

This article gets gets a little bit into hearsay I think. For example, the bit about the $500,000 salary is unsubstantiated. Is this statement based on any actual facts, or just on rumors?

This article leaves a lot to be desired on many levels I think.

"I enjoy his radio show and it helped me to break away from the word of faith movement. I hope he isn't making $500,000 each year because it would make him less credible when lambasting prosperity teachers. Now if he is making that and more from book royalties, more power to him." We need people like him and more because the common person doesn't understand how to study the Bible and heck for that matter, most ministers.

According to the 2004 IRS Form 990 (fiscal year 7/1/2004-6/30/2005), Mr. Hanegraaff was paid $199,000 plus $11,192 for expenses. His wife Kathy was employed as Director of Planning with a salary of $125,000 plus expenses of less than $2500. Copies available for public inspection at - EricP 17:48, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

Woah, not so fast, Eric (my friend)! Please see my article in the Christian Sentinel that covered this. The actual amount of the Hanegraaff income was "$411,727 in compensation." This was "according to the latest IRS 990 forms filed by CRI that covered the 2002-2003 fiscal year." This was based, as Eric said above, on the 990 forms available at I also noted that it was "... up from the $358,447 of a year earlier. That is an increase of more than $53,000! CRI Vice President Paul Young, who abandoned his wife in Canada approximately a decade ago incurring the disappointment of his home church and the former president and coworkers at CRI Canada, received almost a $25,000 raise, placing his salary at $155,600. But the way the Hanegraaff compensated was reported in the IRS forms required some creativity: Hanegraaff's on paper `salary' actually went down from $251,886 to $227,167, but despite a slow speaking schedule (Hanegraaff does not speak at many churches and conferences) his expense account zoomed from $17,301 to $53,164! Meanwhile Kathy Hanegraaff's salary as `director of planning' went from $87,600 to $107,500, and her expense account went from $1,660 to $3,896. But hidden in the 990 form is the fact that Kathy Hanegraaff was the only one at CRI to receive an extra $20,000 in `contributions to employee benefit plans and deferred compensation.' Also keep in mind that according to one of the exposés of last year many CRI employees were unaware of Mrs. Hanegraaff's role at the ministry; some complained that they seldom ever saw here, and others didn't know she worked there. Yet since her hiring approximately four years ago in the newly created position, the 990 forms claim that Mrs. Hanegraaff, a parent of nine children, works more than 50 hours per week at CRI!" Of course, some new 990 forms have been filed since then that show more changes. The Christian Sentinel will report on that. Sincerely, William M. Alnor, Ph.D. Publisher, The Christian Sentinel and Assistant Professor, Dept. of Communication, California State University, East Bay (Hayward)


I've enjoyed his "Bible Answer Man" radio program, and found much of it helpful, but, at the same time, I am not surprised at some of the problems Hanegraaff's apparently had with CRI employees, because one can certainly detect a note of condescension when he disagrees with someone calling-in to the program. For example, words to the effect of "If you would just read the text of the Biblical passage in question, I don't think you would have the problem you are having with it," with an implication that the caller hasn't read it, or wasn't intelligent enough/reasonable enough/of good enough faith, to figure out what the text was saying. That being said, I've also heard Hanegraaff be somewhat good natured with callers he disagrees with, so he's by no means consistently condescending.

I've only listened to the program once or twice, but I thought he generally seemed to be a friendly and intelligent person. However, I think it is important to have this large criticisms section because of all the controversial positions he has taken, most of which I didn't know about before reading this article. Academic Challenger 09:33, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

Does he have a college education? I have never seen any info on his holding any academic training in theology. I'm not saying you need it in order to be an effective minister but it has always been something I've wanted to know about him.


Any known realtionship between the two Hanegraaffs? --Pjacobi 22:28, 27 September 2006 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Hanegraaff1.jpg[edit]

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'Recent developments' section[edit]

The 'Recent developments' sections is a real mess. It currently looks like a talk page section and has numerous misspellings. (talk) 02:20, 17 January 2008 (UTC)


Ahem...this is a well-written article, to be sure, yet I find some rather unscholarly material in the "Controversies" section. Skim over it and you'll see what I mean. It looks less like an encyclopedia article and more like a weblog. It gives in great detail attacks on Mr. Hanegraff, but does not offer any objections to those. Can we please be neutral and give both opinions, rather than just those of his adversaries? It just looks so unscholarly. Scorpionman (talk) 19:44, 7 February 2008 (UTC)

Extreme bias[edit]

I think this is the most biased Wikipedia entry I've ever come across. There is no place for axe-grinding and an extended section of attack after attack in an encyclopedia-like publication.

At best, the page is the opposite of Wikipedia's neutral point of view policy. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:29, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

Controversies Section = One-sided and Gossipy[edit]

Mr. Hanegraaff, but essentially no unbiased, verified facts are offered. The current state of that section gives it the appearance of a flame board, almost as if it should be renamed from "Controversies" to "If you want to flame Hank, post here!"

Within this discussion page (see above) the following note was added: "Much of the 'controversies' section is documented here: [2] june 22, 2006." The link offered directs the reader to the Walter Martin website, but clearly this site cannot be unbiased, as Mr. Martin's surviving relatives and their friends (i.e. those who run the website) are among Hank's most adamant critics.

I am greatly concerned that the trend set, thus far, within the Controversies section is only going to encourage others whom Mr. Hanegraaff has bravely stood against to indiscriminately add flaming slander. Note that citations are missing throughout nearly the entire section, at this time.

--Beleg Strongbow (talk) 19:12, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

I completely agree! People should judge not, least they be judged! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:49, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
I'm glad to see that this article has finally been cleaned-up with the removal of the so-called "Controversies" that amounted to little more than a gossip column. I hope it stays that way, though I am sure that listing some controversies is useful. -- Beleg Strongbow (talk) 17:32, 7 July 2008 (UTC)

Neutrality Removal[edit]

I'm too tired to read what the neutrality note is about, let me guess, someone is mad that Hank's bad side isn't mentioned? Well I put in a link to what is apparently site with the most documentation on his misbehavior with examples of his his credit-theft. I didn't check to see if that site uses the biblical two or three witnesses rules. Perhaps someone can ask the owner of that site, "Are these one person witness accusations as to his unkink behavior, or are there dual witnesses to any single events?"Firestar777 (talk) 16:15, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

I'm not sure who added it, but when an encyclopedic entry on a WP:BLP has a criticism larger than the body of the article, that is a clear sign that the article is likely in some violation of WP:NPOV. Additionally, I removed your blog-sourced Calvin/Armenian addition, as it is clearly a violation of coatracking WP:COAT, along with using blog-sourced material in violation of verifiability/notability/credibility WP:V and original research WP:NOR. Contrary to popular "Reformed" thought, rejecting Calvinist systematic theology does not automatically make one's theology Armenian.--Lyonscc (talk) 19:27, 13 April 2008 (UTC)

Firestar777 edits - April 2008[edit]

Information.svg Please refrain from making unconstructive edits to Wikipedia, as you did to Hank Hanegraaff. Your edits appear to constitute vandalism, and in violation of "No Original Research", "Coatracking" of tangential issues (Calvinist/Arminian debate), and Blog-sourcingin Biographies of Living Perons and have been reverted. If you insist on continuing in this behavior, as noted here and above, you risk being temporarily or permanently prevented from editing the Wikipedia.--Lyonscc (talk) 21:26, 13 April 2008 (UTC)
Firestar, your edits are all in violation of WP:NOR, WP:V, etc. If you insist on making these changes w/o discussion (such as inserting the Armenian/Calvin debate where it has nothing to do with the notability of Hanegraff), you will be reported to admins. These are NOT false allegations--Lyonscc (talk) 12:41, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
Example 1 - you wrote -
His statement about God being a cosmic rapist is also a logical fallacy as it it universally accepted that to love a person is not forcing that love on them nor is a parent or anyone classified as a rapist for loving someone who doesn't want that love. For example, a parent would not be considered a rapist for loving their child if the child was hating them at the same time.
This is an example of a direct violation of the wikipedia policy on no original research.
A person's biography page is not the place upon which to fight your theological battles.--Lyonscc (talk) 12:45, 14 April 2008 (UTC)
Example 2 - you wrote -
Hank has identified himself as an Arminian by various statements such as the one below made on his Bible Answer Man call in radio show on February, 4, 2000:
God is neither a cosmic rapist who forces his love on people, nor is he a cosmic puppeteer who forces people to love him. Instead God grants us the freedom of choice.
He also repeated this in an article he wrote.[1]
In matter of fact, HH did NOT identify himself as an Arminian - this is something you are inferring (a violation of WP:NOR). Additionally, HH is not notable for his choice (or lack thereof) of systematic theology. Inserting this debate is a form of coatracking, and is in violation of Biographies of Living Persons and WP:NPOV.--Lyonscc (talk) 12:52, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

External Links[edit]

Per Wikipedia policy on sourcing WP:V, blogs are not adequate sources for Wikipedia, with the exception of the blog of the subject of a Biography of a Living Person. Additionally, the level of rigor increases for Biographies of Living Persons, particularly as it pertains to citations for criticism.

This article is about Hank Hannegraff, not the Christian Research Institute. I am removing the external links that primarily deal with CRI criticism, as these are in violation of coatracking an issue larger than Hannegraff. These links may be relevant to the CRI page in Wikipedia, depending on their use and integration. Additionally, I am removing the CRI financial link for similar reasons, in addition to the peculiarity of its inclusion, whereas most Biographies of Living Persons do not concentrate on such particulars.

I am removing the Walter Martin family statement, as it is self-published (in violation of WP:V) and disconnected from any reliable source (the site in which it is a sub-page is dead).

The 'Ministry Watch' link is broken (no article appears). If you do a lookup on the site, it is about CRI, not Hannegraff specifically. Additionally, it is self-published by this "watchdog" site. This link should not be in the article, as it is a violation of WP:V, WP:COAT and WP:BLP. The link is removed, as well, as it deals with CRI - not Hannegraff - and it is broken.

Please refrain from adding these back into the article.--Lyonscc (talk) 13:01, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

Controversies Edits - April 2009[edit]

Jon Harder has repeatedly deleted entries based on primary source material. His POV is pro-Hanegraaff and Wikipedia does nothing to stop this prejudicial editing. So much for Wikipedia's credibility...TruthBringsLight (talk) 20:53, 13 February 2010 (UTC).

I removed the image of his book and the list of topics about it, which were more of a plug for the book than informative about any controversy. I also added a brief paragraph documenting the more well-known controversies. I did not include the several more tenuous accusations, such as the mail fraud charges that were filed against Hanegraff, prompted by Bill Alnor, nor did I include the inflammatory language that was in here before. Much more could have been added, such as details about the financial issues that he got into, agrument he got into with D. James Kennedy, the temporary loss of a good standing rating by ECFA, the wrongful termination lawsuit that he settled out of court back in the 90's, the charges from Walter Martin's family and others to step down, the six-figure salary and the car, or having his family members on the payroll at CRI. I think what is now here in the controversies section is brief, documented, and as non-biased as possible. Humblesmith, April 7, 2009 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:39, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

I removed the last day's edits, as they were all sourced via sources which do not meet the standards required for WP:BLP and WP:V. Perhaps you could propose a new section here on the discussion page with verifiable sources?--Lyonscc (talk) 15:03, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

i don't get it. One of those sources was a court do you get more of a primary source, non-biased document than that? Another contained original letters written to the subject of the article.......which was the main point of the sentence it referenced(that these people had written this letter.) A third one was a transcript of an interview with people who are now deceased, and was not published anywhere else. It's a primary source. How am I supposed to have better verifiability? Perhaps you could provide a more accurate opinion of what you seem to think is objective. Humblesmith, April 14, 2009 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:58, 14 April 2009 (UTC)

The sources were from,,, and . All of these are self-published sites, not sources that comply with WP:BLP or WP:V. From WP:BLP - Never use self-published books, zines, websites, webforums, blogs and tweets as a source for material about a living person, unless written or published by the subject of the biographical material.--Lyonscc (talk) 01:29, 15 April 2009 (UTC)

OK, so I'm just trying to understand here.........I can reference Texas Civil Court Case 06-0527, and let the public figure out how to obtain public records from Harris or Austin counties in Texas, but I can't post a link to an amicus brief, merely because it's a personal website? And I can reference the Los Angeles Times, but I can't reference a website that compiles articles from the Los Angeles Times and other news sources? What fundamental difference is there in those two? And I guess I'd contend with the idea of "self published." A self-published work is frowned upon in academic circles because it implies the person could not get something published, so they did it themselves for their own benefit. I don't think the intention is to exclude things such as uncommented, unedited, primary source quotations about third parties that just happen to be published by an individual that is not recieving personal benefit. Using the rules as you have, you're not doing this in the spirit of eliminating self-published're discriminating between news sources because one has a well-known name and the other doesn't. How else is one to include primary source quotes? Humblesmith —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:42, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

You can reference Civil Court Cases, and if they are in an official government database, you can link to them, as well. One of the problem with self-published sites, though, is that their content is completely unregulated, unverifiable, and apt to change. Each of the sites listed above has a good deal of commentary, etc., apart from the court documentation, and there is no guarantee that the court documents will remain there. For newspapers, links to the original sources are required, not self-published compendiums of them. Responsible news sources, even years after the fact, will correct articles if an error was made - copies of articles don't have this benefit. There are all sorts of reasons that original sources are linked to and not copies of them in self-published sites, many of which can be read in WP's policy on verifiability.--Lyonscc (talk) 03:48, 25 April 2009 (UTC)

Clean-up (& neutrality of 'Controversies' section)[edit]

I have spoken with Hank several times on the Bible Answer Man program and I have done a significant amount of research into the controversy surrounding his ministry. I have spoken directly with one of the parties who was fired by Hank for speaking up for better accounting practices at CRI. I have a CD recording of Hank getting angry with a former employee who called into the Bible Answer Man program and questioned Hank's accounting practices. All that I have read in the Controversies section appears to line up very closely with the facts I am aware of. While the list of problems at CRI seem fairly accurate, it leaves out a number of other problems which seem to have plagued the ministry. For example it appears that CRI purchased a $60,000.00 Lexus sports car for Hank's use and Hank's wife was on the payroll but employees never saw her do anything for the ministry. The combined salaries of Hank and his wife were indeed in the area of $400 to $500 thousand per year according to a number of reports. You can find out much more about all this by copying and pasting the following words into a Google search:

"Hank Hanegraaff" finances

I have not looked into it yet but I have been told that Hank's move to North Carolina (in which he left most of his staff in California) was to get out from under the scrutiny of his staff. I have also heard that he has purchased an expensive home in a gated community next to a golf course in Charlotte. I have not confirmed that info. John David 5/23/2006

I've done a major clean-up of the article today, basically re-organizing the sections, rewriting in better English, and including references etc.

The section Controversies seems to be the only remaining major problem. There are a lot of unsubstantiated claims in there, so that section needs to be redrafted more carefully and footnoted so it's clear where the claims are coming from. User:David L Rattigan 21:02 03 May 2006 GMT

Frankly, the controversies section is so NPOV that it needs to be removed. Other than Jihad and other super controversial pages, I haven't seen so biased a writing style. It almost seems like an email flame instead of Wikipedia. Delete the section if it isn't rewritten. User:Hopquick (talk) 05:16, 12 March 2008 (UTC)

January/February 2010 Clean-up[edit]

Jon, I added four primary sources (Los Angeles Times and Christianity Today), and you still edited a large section of my posts. With respect, and for the record, do you know Hank Hanegraaff, have any link to him or any personal preference for him or his teachings? I'm asking this question to clarify publicly that your edits are not prejudicial. Thank you.TruthBringsLight (talk) 18:58, 30 January 2010 (UTC)

JonTruthBringsLight (talk) 18:50, 30 January 2010 (UTC),

Regarding the Hank Hanegraaff page, with all due respect, I do not understand your edits. I used quotes from the original sources, which as an academic, I know to be the correct way to support statements. You removed these primary source quotes and "scrubbed clean" my edits to diminish my points. What Wikipedia rule did you follow that allows primary source quotes to be deleted? Is there a list of editing rules you could refer me to? Just wondering if there is a conflict of interest here? :) Are you a Hank Hanegraaff supporter? Also, I did not quote from a self-published work; I simply mentioned it. Since when is mentioning a work and stating that it is privately published unacceptable? Shouldn't the reader be able to decide if they believe it is a valid source? Is there a rule that supports this edit? This seems to be censorship, which leads me to wonder again about a conflict of interest. Thanks for your time.

I responded on my talk page. JonHarder talk 22:17, 31 January 2010 (UTC)
I cleaned up the language summarizing the LAT article (since the previous language was NPOV and did not describe what was contained within the reference.--Lyonscc (talk) 14:52, 1 February 2010 (UTC)
Your change is an improvement. It looks like there is disagreement about them merits of recent changes. WP:BLP is clear that the contentious, ill-documented version must come out. If additional opinions are wanted, the biographies of living persons noticeboard is a good place to go. JonHarder talk 00:16, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

One frequent editor was asked to respond to a direct question about connection to /support of a living person. He failed to answer this direct question, leaving us with increased suspicion as to his motives. Responses such as "I prefer..." a certain style, while not answering the primary question, increases suspicions of conflict of interest. That Hanegraaff has been involved in controversy is indisputble. The failure to mention it here, and the contiual exising of primary sources, reduces the credibility of wikipedia. --Humblesmith, 27 April 2010

User TruthBringsLight[edit]

I have removed this users edits. Inserting verbiage such as "Hard Questions for the Bible Answer Man," "Casting Stones: Questions About Radio's 'Bible Answer Man' Are Coming From Within," or " of many for the self-appointed “Bible Answer Man”..." are not encyclopedic. Also, referring to another users clean up as "...prejudicial POV..." is unwarranted. Basileias (talk) 22:52, 14 February 2010 (UTC)

I moved the following comments by TruthBringsLight to here, as they were buried in a section above from two years ago:

Jon Harder is a Hanegraaff supporter who repeatedly deletes primary source material from the Controversy section and opposing POV comments from this section.
The Controversies section is scrubbed clean on Wikipedia on a regular basis. Whenever any content is added that points to controversial problems with Hanegraaff, it is deleted. So much for the accuracy of Wikipedia. TruthBringsLight (talk) 05:21, 28 January 2010 (UTC)
The Controversies section is filled (indeed, that section is as large as--or larger than--the rest of the article put together) with mostly (if not entirely) opinion and hearsay from those who opposeTruthBringsLight (talk) 04:47, 15 February 2010 (UTC)

TruthBringsLight, please put your comments and any suggestions for edits at the bottom of this discussion page, rather than in the middle of previous sections. Thanks!--Lyonscc (talk) 14:56, 15 February 2010 (UTC)

Criticism and controversy[edit]

In the future, it might be worth considering that the Criticism and controversy section be renamed and appropriate material placed in other areas. I'm not sure why the Worldwide Church of God is in this section. It appears notable and it could exist in another section. Word-Faith movement and Counterfeit Revival could exist maybe in a "beliefs" section? 2007 Defamation Suit doesn't have to be deleted and could go somewhere else. I've learned from editing other articles that 'Controversy' sections invite people to find and insert criticisms. With that said, it doesn't mean I'm opposed to inserting notable criticism, but I've found that 'Controversy' sections don't work. Basileias (talk) 17:59, 15 February 2010 (UTC)

I've re-labeled the criticism section to something more mature. I've also move part of the information to "Other works." I removed one citation-less statement and I think what I've done is appropriate. Basileias (talk) 00:39, 1 March 2010 (UTC)

The neutrality of this article is disputed banner[edit]

I would like to remove the neutrality banner but wanted to solicit feedback first to find out if there's other issues that need explored. Basileias (talk) 00:47, 5 March 2010 (UTC)

I support removing the banner. Thanks for reworking the content to eliminate the stand-alone criticisms section. JonHarder talk 12:40, 8 March 2010 (UTC)
I've removed the POV banner. Basileias (talk) 14:08, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

Salaries of the Hanegraaffs[edit]

I added the following text to the Christian Research Institute subheading in the Personal life section the other day: As reported at GuideStar, the Christian Research Institute paid Hendrik Hanegraaff $236,701 in compensation and benefits and Kathy Hanegraaff $152,732 in 2010. It was removed less than 24 hours later, with the comment: No direct correlation, possible issue of WP:NOR. Given that the source was very clearly cited (see below), I don't understand the rationale for the deletion that it was based on original research. Since I'm a newbie to Wikipedia editing, could someone explain what the problem is here and how it can be avoided? Thank you for your consideration. IRS form 990 Return for Organization Exempt from Income Tax (talk) 08:48, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

Salaries are rarely, if ever, germane in Biographies of Living Persons. Just because something is factual doesn't make it encyclopedic, and often things like posting salaries, etc., is an attempt to draw an inference about the individual, "between the lines", which runs afoul of the Wiki policies on Original Research. It is usually best to discuss potentially controversial (or borderline) additions in the Talk page to get input from other editors before adding them to the article page. Once consensus is reached, such additions then move to the main page (which avoids edit wars and the like).--Lyonscc (talk) 17:30, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Hi Chris:Could you explain, with references if possible, your statement that "Salaries are rarely, if ever, germane?" I didn't see any explicit reference to that effect in Biographies of Living Persons.Thank you.Ralph Dave Westfall (talk) 18:26, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Ralph - the whole WP:NOR thing does take awhile to figure out. I like to think of it this way - in journalism, you often try to pull together Facts to help the reader draw a conclusion. You report Fact A, Fact B, and Fact C, and leave it to the reader to formulate an opinion based upon that. That methodology is part of what "Original Research" is in Wikipedia, and it's a no-no. Biographies of Living Persons, especially, are treated somewhat gingerly to avoid legal issues, and to be fair to individuals, who do change over time.
Reporting what is on someone's IRS forms as income is typically not 'notable' for wikipedia purposes. If you think this specific information should be included, finding a primary verifiable source that can also be considered 'notable' is a good start. It *seems* like you're reporting the subject's salary as a way of suggesting (without saying so) that the subject made too much money off of CRI. Simply reporting the financial data leaves a lot open for interpretation, which is not really encyclopedic (and is considered "original research"). The data, itself, doesn't identify what portion the "significant reimbursement" entailed, and isn't an actual PRIMARY verifiable source with factual or analytical reporting. There is no interpretive content in the source, and its linkage to the article isn't obvious w/o 'original research'.
Also, please leave the main article alone until some sort of agreement is reached on what/if to include. Thanks :-)--Lyonscc (talk) 19:19, 26 June 2012 (UTC)

Hi Chris:

Thank you for getting back to me. However your response leaves some issues unresolved.

First I asked you to source the basis for your concerns, either from Wikipedia or somewhere else. You didn't. So it's your opinion against mine. And I totally disagree that posting firmly established information from unimpeachable sources represents original research. Under that definition, much of the content of Wikipedia would need to be purged.

Second, the principle is well-established that the compensation of people in some form of public service or receiving tax benefits should be publicly available. I teach in a public university and my salary is available at Similarly people working in non-profits are funded by donations and contributions, and it is required by law that this data be made public by the IRS in the interests of transparency.

You've made some authoritarian statements, without any documentation. Please provide same for the following:

  • "That methodology is part of what 'Original Research' is in Wikipedia"
  • "Simply reporting the financial data leaves a lot open for interpretation, which is not really encyclopedic (and is considered "original research")." [perish the thought that people might be able to make their own interpretations without gatekeepers to keep them in line]

Also could you expand or rephrase the following statements to make them more understandable:

  • "its linkage to the article isn't obvious w/o 'original research'." [how and why not?]
  • "Biographies of Living Persons, especially, are treated somewhat gingerly to avoid legal issues" [what's the legal issue with posting information required by law?]
  • "finding a primary verifiable source that can also be considered 'notable' is a good start" [what exactly does "notable" mean and why do forms required by law to be filed with the IRS not fit into that category?]

Ralph Dave Westfall (talk) 05:35, 27 June 2012 (UTC)

Ralph - Side note - your formatting does not work in Wikipedia. You need to use colons to indent, sign your post at the end with four tildes, etc..
On your anonymous IP talk page, you wrote: "As regards your second point, I have a counter-proposal: Leave the data there until you come up with a convincing argument as to why it shouldn't be on the page." Please see the policy on Biographies of Living Persons regarding the "default" position when adding information to a Biography of a living person:

Contentious material about living persons (or recently deceased) that is unsourced or poorly sourced—whether the material is negative, positive, neutral, or just questionable—should be removed immediately and without waiting for discussion.[2] Users who persistently or egregiously violate this policy may be blocked from editing.

I would note that this is one of the few exceptions to the "Three Revert Rule" (see WP:3RR). You are currently on your third revert in 24 hours, so if you continue I will have to report you on the 3RR notice board (which I do not wish to do). After posting this, I will revert your addition, but I am more than willing to continue discussing it here to reach a conclusion with you.
Also, see the subsection on Primary Sources -

Exercise caution in using primary sources. Do not use trial transcripts and other court records, or other public documents, to support assertions about a living person. Do not use public records that include personal details, such as date of birth, home value, traffic citations, vehicle registrations, and home or business addresses. Where primary-source material has been discussed by a reliable secondary source, it may be acceptable to rely on it to augment the secondary source, subject to the restrictions of this policy, no original research, and the other sourcing policies.

I realize you believe that I've made "authoritarian statements, without any documentation", and as a new Wikipedia editor, you may not have recognized the jargon I was using, but I was actually referring to documentation that I linked to early on. In addition to the WP policy on Biographies, I would suggest reading No Original Research, which defines what a "Primary Source" is (and an IRS document does not fit this definition - it is DATA, not a primary source). In particular, what you are proposing would be WP:SYN, a subset of Original Research. You wrote "perish the thought that people might be able to make their own interpretations without gatekeepers to keep them in line", which is an indicator that your desire is to 'help' the reader with synthesis(and I used to think the same thing, until a patient editor pointed me to WP:SYN and explained the "original research" policy).
Also, Verifability is a helpful policy to keep in mind in all editing and adding of sources, and WP:NPOV, particularly the subsection on undue weight, is something to keep in mind, as well.
I will try to check in multiple times today, just to keep the ball rolling if you wish to continue to discuss your proposed addition. As I noted above, I will be reverting the article back to its prior version, per the policy on Biographies of Living Persons "default" position. Please do not revert it again, until we have reached consensus here.--Lyonscc (talk) 12:42, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
Thank you for the response, Chris.
"Contentious material about living persons (or recently deceased) that is unsourced or poorly sourced"
Please explain to me why data that is required by law to be filed with the IRS and be made publicly available, such as compensation data, is contentious and/or poorly sourced.
BTW I'm now using my full name as a handle, so the following signature reflects that. Ralph Dave Westfall 18:03, 27 June 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westfalr3 (talkcontribs)
IRS data does not fit the definition of "Primary Source", and is considered a "public document". From the Biography policy: "Do not use trial transcripts and other court records, or other public documents, to support assertions about a living person.". Primary (secondary and tertiary) sources are all written articles, not government forms, data or transcripts. Normally, I wouldn't know much about the use of public documents in Biographies, but I've been following the Brett Kimberlin page and discussions (with only a couple edits), where the discussion between several of the editors has gotten heated w/ long discussions over the use of public documents (what is allowed and what is not in Wikipedia). If the IRS data was reported in a larger article by a notable primary source, we might have some leeway in how/if to include it. As it is, though, raw data via public documents is not allowed in BLP's.
Does this make sense to you?
Also, on a separate note, the way you "sign" an entry here is with four consecutive tilde's. The Wikipedia software will automagically add your signature, time, etc. Otherwise, a bot will come in and try to do it (not always successfully), and it can make the discussion threads harder to read.
Grace and peace to you.--Lyonscc (talk) 19:53, 27 June 2012 (UTC)

Thank you for the response, Chris.
"Do not use trial transcripts and other court records, or other public documents, to support assertions about a living person."
Please identify the assertion that I am supporting about Hank and/or his wife based on the IRS 990 data.
BTW I did use four tildes in my previous two responses. I'm at a loss to understand why you continue to suggest that I do so.
For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. -- Ralph Dave Westfall 21:17, 27 June 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westfalr3 (talkcontribs)
Ralph - It's possible I have been so indoctrinated into wikipedia's context/culture that I am making a lot of baseline assumptions that I shouldn't be making. For Biographies of Living Persons, everything must be backed up in some fashion with verifiable sources. "Sources" are different than "data". [example: A newspaper article about Fred is a "source". Fred's reported income to the IRS is "data" that is not part of a primary source.] Sources are written/filmed about the subject by an author/journalist/videographer/etc.. Everything in the wikipedia article (aside from fillers/connectors/titles/etc.) is an assertion about the subject of the article.
Judging from your placement of the IRS data, it appears that you want it to support the assertion of Hanegraaff's "financial irregularities". If this is the case, it would be in violation of the policy that says "Do not use [...] public documents, to support assertions about a living person."
If this is not the case, and you are not trying to support that assertion directly, but your desire is that the reader would see this data and use it to draw conclusions/inferences about "financial irregularities", this is an example of synthesis, which is a violation of the No Original Research policy.
If you simply think the IRS data should be included, with no inferences made whatsoever, and that its placement in the "financial irregularities" section is unneeded and/or immaterial, then it would not be considered for inclusion in a Biography page because it is simply "data" and not a published "source". The Biography template includes some basic "data" that can be included for any biography (see WP:INFOBOX), which includes birth date, occupation, spouse, etc., but IRS data is not part of any infobox template. By itself, it is not any more (or less) notable than the IRS tax information for any one of the other thousands of biographies on wikipedia.
Normally, I wouldn't go to this degree (or down this line of discussion), because (per the policy on Biographies of Living Persons), "The burden of evidence for any edit on Wikipedia rests with the person who adds or restores material." Since you want this included in the article, it is up to you to show how it is notable/germane to the article and not Original Research, that it meets all of the sourcing guidelines (some of which I have cited for you), and that it meets the higher bar of inclusion that Wikipedia has set for BLP's. Since you are a new editor, though, I am trying to give you an idea of what hurdles you need to meet to include something in an article. Just because something is factual (Jim Smith is 6-feet-10-inches tall) doesn't mean it is greenlighted for inclusion in an article.
As to the tilde thing - the reason I bring it up is because the SineBot keeps signing your articles for you, so apparently you're not doing it the way Wikipedia wants it done. I usually just click the signature button at the top of the form at the very end of my edit.--Lyonscc (talk) 22:59, 27 June 2012 (UTC)
Thank you again, Chris. This explains the issues much more clearly. I have a substantially better understanding of Wikipedia now.
I just hit to link below to generate the four tildes. Is this the effect you were describing? If not, how do I achieve it? Ralph Dave Westfall 04:13, 28 June 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westfalr3 (talkcontribs)

Ralph - my apologies again for so much shorthand/jargon at the beginning of the discussion. My own family tells me I can say in 500 words what most people can only say in 50, but I am trying to get better :-). Your tildes didn't work this time, either, and I'm not sure what it is you're doing that isn't working. I see that SineBot put instructions on your talk page for this, as well. Basically, at the very end of your comment, you can click the little "signature" button in the toolbar of the editor, and it will insert dash-dash-tilde-tilde-tilde-tilde at the very end of it. When you hit "Save Page", it converts these into the official Wiki signature.--Lyonscc (talk) 05:24, 28 June 2012 (UTC)


Why is this article under the scope of WP:WikiProject Charismatic Christianity? Hanegraaff has been highly critical of Charismaticism (especially Word of Faith theology), and his views are more aligned with Reformed Christianity. – Confession0791 talk 08:58, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

I removed the banner. – Confession0791 talk 16:05, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

The Local Churches[edit]

The new section on TLC is much larger than is warranted on a biography page, as it contains a lot of material that is either included in, or belongs on, wikipedia pages for TLC or the TLC Controversies page. The links to these WP articles suffice for providing background/reference material for the user. I am recommending that it be significantly shortened to avoid WP:UNDUE weight, and potential coatracking issues. Also, the information on Gretchen Passantino does not belong here, as she is related to CRI, not Hannegraaff.

Recommended revision:

In the 2006 controversial lawsuit between the Local churches (affiliation) (TLC) and the authors and publishers of a Christian countercult book that labeled TLC as a cult, Hannegraaff filed an amicus brief with the Texas Supreme Court, saying that TLC wasn't a cult. This resulted in criticism of Hannegraaff for his 'unwise and unfounded' action." [1]

This keeps all of the included links and references, so that the reader can choose to dig deeper into the issue, if they so desire, while keeping the content specifically on Hannegraaff, the subject of this WP article. It also avoids the issues with WP:UNDUE and WP:COATRACK. I would still have a question about whether is considered a Verifiable Source, along with the notability of this particular issue. It is likely that, at some point in the future, the "Controversies" section (which are discouraged by WP - see Wikipedia:Controversy sections) will need to be severely condensed and/or dispersed within the article to avoid the overall WP:NPOV issues associated with it.--Lyonscc (talk) 13:47, 28 June 2012 (UTC)

I went ahead an edited out the remaining explanatory text about the TLC suit, which is part of the Local Church Controversies article, and isn't really about Hannegraaff. The background of the case that applies to Hannegraaff is his amicus brief, which said they weren't a cult. The appeals and outcomes are not related to Hannegraaff, the subject of this wiki article.--Lyonscc (talk) 11:48, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

Cleanup of Article[edit]

It had been a long time since I really looked at this article, and it can use some serious cleanup. As part of this, we need to consider if it is possible to integrate the controversies section into the body of the article, to better fit with Wikipedia's guidelines for controversy sections.

Initially, I've moved the Grace Communion International out of the Controversies section, since it is not about a controversy.--Lyonscc (talk) 11:58, 29 June 2012 (UTC)

Hi Chris:
Could you elaborate on 1-"I would still have a question about whether is considered a Verifiable Source," and 2-"the notability of this particular issue?"
Also WP:CRIT says:
Negative criticism of a topic is acceptable material, and should be included in this encyclopedia. When incorporating negative criticism, the POV policy requires that negative material be presented in a balanced and fair manner. Additionally, the undue weight policy requires that negative criticism be presented in a way that does not draw excessive attention to the negative criticism.
Could you also enlarge on how and why you feel the Controversies section is so out line with the above that it might "need to be severely condensed and/or dispersed within the article?"
Thank you for your consideration. Ralph Dave Westfall 17:11, 29 June 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westfalr3 (talkcontribs)
1 - I did some checking, and has been accepted in other articles as a verifiable source (it's not self-published, has editorial processes, etc.), so I've got no concerns about it. (There are some Christian publications that look like news sites, but are really self-published articles.) So I think it's OK as a source.
2 - Notability deals with how significant an issue is to knowing about the individual and why he/she is in Wikipedia in the first place. For example, just because a newspaper (a verifiable source) prints that John Smith judged a local science fair doesn't mean that this particular incident is newsowrthy. Wikipedia does not seek to be an exhaustive compendium on topics. A good policy to read is on recentism, and in particular the ten-year test. For example, in this particular article, the 2007 Defamation Suit is probably not really notable since it didn't go anywhere and the one verifiable source available online is a single paragraph. This really isn't something Hanneraaff is notable for. [I'd also note that failed lawsuits are dumped from WP articles all the time for lack of notability, unless both parties are famous and the suit has something newsworthy in it.]
3 - Regarding the Controversies section, I'd refer you to the Wikipedia:Controversy sections article, along with the last sentence you quoted: "the undue weight policy requires that negative criticism be presented in a way that does not draw excessive attention to the negative criticism.". With this article it's not just the COntroversies section that's the issue, though - it just seems incredibly disjointed. I'm wondering if there's a way better organize the information to make it flow better that would also take care of the "controversy section" issue at the same time, that's all.--Lyonscc (talk) 00:19, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

"String of controversies" and compensation[edit]

Re: deleted sentences.

WP:NPOV says: "Neutrality requires that each article or other page in the mainspace fairly represents all significant viewpoints that have been published by reliable sources, in proportion to the prominence of each viewpoint. Giving due weight and avoiding giving undue weight means that articles should not give minority views as much of, or as detailed, a description as more widely held views."

The source article was in the LA Times, a prominent large circulation newspaper in the same region as the Wikipedia subject at the time. The article specifically says that the mentioned issue was "another in a string of controversies surrounding Hanegraaff" and also includes his and his wife's compensation. As is well-known, reputable newspapers are careful to avoid the appearance of a biased point of view. This strongly suggests that, in relation to the stated Wikipedia policy, the two sentences are a "significant viewpoint" whose inclusion would be consistent with the phrase "fairly represents" rather than being "minority views." With just 40 words in the two sentences in a 1700+ word article, this would not appear to be "undue weight" either.

Ralph Dave Westfall 18:24, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Just because something is in a reliable source does not make its inclusion relevant. My citation of WP:UNDUE includes the entire "Controversy" section, along with much of the "Other Works" section (which seems to be existing as a WP:COATRACK for various rebuttals/criticisms of specific books, etc.), so it's not "just 40 words in the two sentences in a 1700+ word article". As we've discussed previously, there's no real need for this data in the article, and its inclusion - even though it's publicly available data - doesn't belong in a WP:BLP. Following the policy in WP:BLP, this information needs to stay out of the article until it has been proved that it truly belongs there, rather than me proving it should *not* be there. If you desire, we can engage the official 'mediation' mechanisms in Wikipedia, the first of which is to get a "third opinion".--Lyonscc (talk) 15:27, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
Hi Chris:
I disagree. The fact that an article in the LA Times specifically refers to "another in a string of controversies surrounding Hanegraaff" is prima facie evidence that this article needs to have a Controversies section. That statement could be viewed as slander, so it must have been reviewed by a Times editor who was aware of the legal implications and approved it for publication. I haven't been able to find an explanatory statement--letter to the editor from Hanegraaff or his organization or posting on the organizational web site--let alone a slander suit. If you have seen something along those lines, please add it to the article in the interests of providing "complete information" and a diversity of viewpoints per WP:NPOV.
WP:NPOV says: "Wikipedia aims to describe disputes, but not engage in them. Editors ... should strive in good faith to provide complete information, and not to promote one particular point of view over another. As such, the neutral point of view does not mean exclusion of certain points of view, but including all notable and verifiable points of view." It looks to me like your edits might have the effect of excluding "certain points of view" rather than being consistent with the objective of providing "complete information."
As for compensation, WP:BLP doesn't mention it. However this issue is a matter of significant concern in the nonprofit sector. Charity Navigator's page on the topic (2010 CEO Compensation Study) includes the following statements that indicate both the magnitude of concern and the importance of making such information publicly available:
  • we receive numerous inquiries from donors, reporters and nonprofit board members asking “how much compensation is too much for a charity’s CEO?”
  • CEO compensation has become such a hot-button topic that the IRS ... continues to prioritize CEO compensation as one of its main areas of focus in uncovering fraudulent nonprofit practices
  • IRS has even redesigned the Form 990, the information tax return charities submit to the IRS annually ... to force greater transparency around nonprofit compensation.
  • IRS rules simply state that nonprofit CEOs should receive ‘reasonable compensation.’
  • In determining ‘reasonable compensation,’ the IRS encourages a charity’s board of directors to collect data on the compensation practices of similar nonprofits.
  • Charity Navigator has collected a wealth of data on CEO salaries.
  • Since 2005 we have published our findings in an annual CEO Compensation Study in an effort to help donors, nonprofit leaders and regulators make educated decisions about the appropriateness of a nonprofit executive’s pay.
Since it looks like we're not going to work out a resolution on this by ourselves, let's start up with the official 'mediation' mechanisms in Wikipedia. If I don't hear otherwise from you, I'll request a "third opinion."
Ralph Dave Westfall 17:45, 10 July 2012 (UTC)
First off, I'd note that the salary you're trying to insert is more than 12 years old, wasn't the focus of the article, nor was it carried and commented on in multiple sources. As such, it's notability is suspect - regardless of its factuality, or whether a single source (which I would note, can be read for further study if a Wikipedia reader is so inclined, since the link is in the article) referred to a "string of controversies". This does not automatically grant "prima facie evidence that this article needs to have a Controversies section.". [See the article on Controversy Sections for why WP articles should not have Controversy sections.]
The WP article on Hannegraaff notes that there was controversy in his taking over CRI from Walter Martin, and has links to the sources dealing with those controversies. Importing more detail gives this particular topic WP:UNDUE weight. Wikipedia is not exhaustive, nor is everything that is true and verifiable automatically green-lighted for inclusion. 12-year-old tax return information isn't especially notable - even if it is mentioned in a single news article in a big city. I believe you are taking "complete information" beyond how it is applied in Wikipedia. As I noted above, a considerable portion of the article is already devoted to criticisms of Hannegraaff (or criticisms of his criticisms), and when I compare this to other similar figures, it is pretty easy to argue that the page is tilted more negatively than most. As such, expounding further on items already mentioned in the article, or in the sources already linked, moves the needle further past "undue weight".
I am glad you're concerned about CEO compensation in charities, but wikipedia is not a soapbox, and trying to insert this into the article (as I mentioned further above) seems to be - as you indicate is part of your purpose - a coat-rack for this issue.
I'm not trying to "exclude certain points of view", but if you check my edit history and bio page, my primary focus is in the area of monitoring biographies of famous Christians and various churches, ensuring that neither critics nor sycophants use Wikipedia to further any particular agenda via criticism/praise of these individuals and institutions. As it is, when I look at your editing history, you are currently essentially a single-purpose editor, focusing on criticism of a specific individual. As such, I tend to watch you (and similar folks) more carefully, simply because such accounts are usually sources of tendentious editing, which, over time, become bigger problems. I hope that is not the case with you, but your focus on criticism of a specific person tend to not predict harmonious editing, though I am trying to assume good faith.
Also - tacking on to our previous discussion on signatures - please do not delete the auto-created signature created by Wikipedia - it contains links to your talk pages, edit history, etc., and is part of the reason for the mandatory signature policy.
If you would like to request a third opinion, feel free to do so. I have seen enough 3O's, and have been involved enough, that I can pretty much guarantee that they're not going to see grounds for including secondary-source data about a 12-year-old tax return, with no grounding context, multiple primary sourcing or compelling notability.--Lyonscc (talk) 06:27, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Hi Chris:
You say, "such accounts are usually sources of tendentious editing, which, over time, become bigger problems. I hope that is not the case with you, but your focus on criticism of a specific person tend to not predict harmonious editing, though I am trying to assume good faith."
  1. Perhaps you could provide some statistics to support your blanket generalization categorizing certain people as "usually sources of tendentious editing, which ... become bigger problems?"
  2. If a person was "trying to assume good faith," would he be making such a generalization?
  3. As stated before, I'm a newbie. Wouldn't it be likely that many persons in this status would be focusing on one article initially rather than that being some kind of accurate predictor of sinister motives?
  4. I've asked you this before: What is the problem with my signature? I click the four tildes link and that's what happens. What should I do instead or in addition? What might I be doing that prevents the effect you're recommending?
  5. I'll file a 3O later today. See you there, but responses to the above would still be appreciated.
Ralph Dave Westfall 08:49, 11 July 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westfalr3 (talkcontribs)
Sure thing. To answer your questions:
1) It is an observation, based on years of editing BLP's on Wikipedia. If you look even at the history of this article, or Rob Bell, Rick Warren, Emerging Church Movement, and other "lightning rod" Christian church/BLP articles, you will find a good number of past issues/disputes arising from new, single-purpose/single-issue editors. It's enough of an observable trend that there is a Wikipedia article on the subject. Growing up, I remember my dad telling me that when you see rings around the moon tonight, it's a sign that it may rain tomorrow morning. It's not always true (and often is not), but there is a scientific reason for it, so it is statistically true. In your case, in particular, when I look at the editing on this article, you've got about 70 edits in roughly two weeks, primarily dealing with adding/wordsmithing criticisms of the subject of the article. If you look at edit histories of this articles and similar ones, you will not find many patterns like that. Also, aside from a couple other articles when you first started, you've edited this article exclusively. These, together, would tend to identify you as a WP:SPA - fairly or unfairly - which is a red flag for scrutiny, not accusation. I only inform you about this so that you realize that your pattern of editing/interest in this particular article is different than most WP editors, and you might ask yourself why this is.
2) I agree it is a generalization, though one with historical trending to support it. I am only making it as a generalization and pointing it out to you - not to accuse of you of it, but rather as a friendly observation that you might want to be aware of, lest you fall into that trap. I am assuming good faith, in that you are trying to engage the correct Wikipedia processes, etc., and not doing what many SPE's do by ignoring other editors, refusing to discuss changes and starting edit wars.
3) No sinister motives are assumed. WP:SOAPBOX does not assume motive, but is an observation based on editing patterns. As you've noted, CEO Pay in Non-Profits is one of your soapboxes. Even so, inserting that particular interest into an article that is nominally not on that subject is an example of coatracking, which is to be avoided. In my own case, my soapboxes are mostly, and primarily, political - which is why I almost exclusively abstain from editing political articles, simply because I know I struggle to be truly objective in politics, and the lack of objectivity takes the fun out of editing Wikipedia for me. In the case of biographies of living Christians and churches, I have an interest in applying the policies of Wikipedia to prevent them from becoming attack pages (and most of the SPA's I have encountered in these pages tend to be critics seeking to "bolster" criticisms of the biography subjects or to "warn" people about them) or (in less common cases) from becoming hagiographies. As it is, this particular article, when compared to similar figures, is very "criticism heavy", with chunks of it needing to be pared down - primarily the point-counterpoint stuff in the "Other Works" section, which probably just needs to be chucked, along with the 2007 defamation suit, which really isn't all that notable, since such suits are very common w/ public figures and aren't usually considered all that newsworthy/encyclopedic.
4) Rather than try to sign your name to your posts, just hit the sig button at the top of your comments, the last thing before you hit "Save Page". I can see a few diffs of this page (like this one: LINK ) where you had it right, but then deleted it.
5) Feel free, and perhaps the 3O volunteer will be able to explain, better than I can, why 12-year-old tax returns and secondary sourced material need not be included in Wikipedia articles.--Lyonscc (talk) 18:02, 11 July 2012 (UTC)
Thank you for the response, Chris.
  1. Basing your characterization of my edits on "an observation, based on years of editing BLP's" is subjective and anecdotal. It doesn't respond to my request for statistics to back it up. You mention "historical trending to support it." Please provide a link to such data or withdraw the statement.
  2. I read the WP:SOAPBOX entry and don't think your insinuation that it applies to my efforts is valid. As I mentioned above, there are a lot of widely-recognized-as-valid reasons for making nonprofit compensation data publicly available. In that context, your steadfast and continuing opposition to such transparency might more appropriately be characterized as soapboxing than my efforts to see such data included.
  3. You didn't respond to my statement about the relationship of my newbie status to the the fact that most of my edits have been on the Hanegraaff page. I could also mention that a substantial proportion of that activity has been in response to your actions in regard to my posts. This leads me to feel that your criticism of my primary focus to date is somewhat uncharitable.
Ralph Dave Westfall 18:56, 11 July 2012 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Westfalr3 (talkcontribs)


1) Sorry to be subjective, but the observation's apparently valid enough that an article exists for single-purpose accounts, and discusses how to deal with folks who run them - which does include assuming good faith, even while identifying them as Single-Purpose Accounts. It's not an insult, just an observation that A) Single-Purpose Accounts have a history of creating editing disputes and sometimes ownership issues; and B) you seem to be a Single-Purpose Editor. No more no less, but a friendly observation (with wikilinks throughout, to allow yourself to familiarize yourself with the policies and practices of Wikipedia, like WP:SOAPBOX, WP:COATRACK, and WP:TENDENTIOUS, among others). No need to retract.

2) I understand your desire to try and make "nonprofit compensation data publicly available", but that is - rather explicitly - coatracking, which is part of what Wikipedia is not. And this isn't even current nonprofit compensation data we're discussing - it's 12 years old. The source already referenced in this article, so if a reader wants to follow-up, the data is transparently in the LA Times article, helpfully linked at the bottom of the page.

3) Sorry - I missed the newbie status comment. Some of the edits were in response to reversions, but there were also a number of new changes to other sections, having nothing to do with the subject of compensation, that were not in response to my initial issues w/ your inclusion of IRS data. The appearance of the edits, objections to elimination of the "Controversy" section (which is discouraged in Wikipedia, especially in BLP's) and the paring down the tangential material, seem to indicate that you've got something personally against Hannegraaff. I can't say I've ever heard him speak or that I've ever read a word he's written - I'm just applying the basic rules of editing BLP's in Wikipedia to his article, so I've got no skin in the game.--Lyonscc (talk) 22:17, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

4) I just found the other article I was looking for: Please see But It's True! and WP:ENN.--Lyonscc (talk) 22:21, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

Hey, guys, I'm here from the 3O board. After looking at it, I'd say that, as it stands now, I'd agree with Lyonscc about the article. While verifiability is a necessary criterion for the inclusion information in Wikipedia, it's not a sufficient criterion; that is, we don't need to include information just because it's verifiable. We're allowed to make editorial decisions about what to include and what not to include, based on neutral point of view (particularly undue weight) and the other policies and guidelines.

The problem I have with the disputed information is that it isn't really all that relevant to the section that contains it. Just because the article says that there was a string of other controversies doesn't mean that we have to say it, and I'm concerned that just mentioning the string of other controversies quote without elaboration as to what the other controversies are is misleading. I'm less concerned about the salary bit, as it's a specific thing that has been controversial about him, and the accuracy doesn't appear to be contested, but it's still a bit off-topic. The age of the data doesn't particularly bother me as long as we acknowledge that it is old (and we do). So, if I had to give a recommendation, I'd say definitely remove the "string of controversies" line, and probably the salary line too, although I wouldn't be bothered if the salary was left in.

If there is more information about the string of controversies that you can find in other articles from the paper, then that information could probably be included in a new paragraph within that section, but we should be careful that it's solidly sourced, not just a single line-in-passing from an article about a different event.

Finally, I'd say that we should probably drop the SPA angle; SPAs aren't actually against any policy that I know of, and the fact that Westfalr is even engaging in discussion at all shows that he's a cut above many. That said, Lyonscc hasn't said anything untrue either, and hasn't actually made any specific accusations, so I'd say let's just drop the whole "rumbling of distant thunder" thing of COI/SPA stuff on the one hand and incivility/personal attacks on the other. It'll help with nothing but drama, and if there's one thing that Wikipedia doesn't need more of, it's drama. Writ Keeper 15:16, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

Position on Israel[edit]

What is Hank Hannegraaf's position on Israel and Christian Zionism? -- (talk) 23:30, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

Assessment comment[edit]

The comment(s) below were originally left at Talk:Hank Hanegraaff/Comments, and are posted here for posterity. Following several discussions in past years, these subpages are now deprecated. The comments may be irrelevant or outdated; if so, please feel free to remove this section.

Last edited at 03:19, 26 January 2009 (UTC).

Substituted at 17:05, 29 April 2016 (UTC)

  1. ^ Plowman, Edward E. Without apology