Talk:James R. Allen

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Quality rating of article, and copied material in article[edit]

I downrated this article from B-class down to Stub, within WPBiography. The article has a tag indiccating that the article "incorporates material from" a given source. This is just bad work, then, in my opinion. Whether the source is public domain or not, proper referencing is required. Where text is copied it needs to be put in quotes and sourced by in-line footnote references. Otherwise edits written by wikipedia editors or based on other sources are insulted by the tag suggesting any/all writing in article is merely copied, without proper sourcing, from a published source. Sincerely, doncram (talk) 21:27, 14 January 2008 (UTC)

The tag is there because it (drumroll, please...) incorporates text from a public domain source. If the wikipedia editors are insulted (which they are not), then it would be their own fault for not footnoting their additions. Public domain materiel is perfectly acceptable to use, and as long as the template is in place stating the article uses public domain info and the materiel is made made neutral, a necessity with most things coming from US government sources, then there is no problem using the material. A stub indicates that there is little information there, not that it hasn't met your standard of footnoting.--Nobunaga24 (talk) 00:04, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
A stub is certainly not just an article that needs improvement: once an article has more than a stub worth of information, we remove the stub tag. Rating criteria supports returning the article to B-Class. -- Paleorthid (talk) 19:42, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Okay i have invested some time in editing the article, both contributing new information and sources, and setting aside in block quotes a fresh copy of the official biography text. It is now a better encyclopedia article. Honestly, I feel it would be more appropriate to delete that copied text entirely, but if it is present it should be set aside in quotes or block quote, so that the wording is credited properly to the source. The article could be improved by adding some more to the stub article above that text, and then deleting the official biography. The upshot of this work is that I am confirmed in believing that the article, before, should have been rated stub. Quick comparison of the article to the site it "incorporates text" from revealed to me that there was little different from the official bio page. doncram (talk) 23:12, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Now I am not sure what the article's rating should be, now, as it is what I would call a stub, plus a full copy of another webpage. In my view, that should be rated like a stub having an external link. So, I think it should be a stub. The extent of wikipedia editor written information is just a stub. doncram (talk) 23:12, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Not a stub. See WP:STUB and Stubsensor.--Paleorthid (talk) 23:50, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Not a stub. See criteria for stub specific to WikiProject Biography --Paleorthid (talk) 23:55, 15 January 2008 (UTC)
Okay, thank you for explaining. doncram (talk) 16:43, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

Entry of women to US AF academy[edit]

One direction to go with this article would be to explore James R. Allen's role in the entrance of women to the US AF academy, when he was superintendent. My source so far is the wikipedia article on United States Air Force Academy, which mentions many integration issues, leading eventually to sexual scandals that came out years after Allen was gone. Checking the sources in that article could provide some leads.

My vague understanding, from general media reports, of the entry of women there was that it was strongly opposed up the line of command and that the women who joined were hazed viciously. Was he a supporter or an opposer? Was he removed from the superintendent role 1 year later because of his support or because of his opposition, or truly for other reasons? There must be news accounts of the period that go to him for quotes. doncram (talk) 23:12, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

FWIW, I later tried searching on James R. Allen in a literature database that included New York Times history, and did not find him mentioned in this context. doncram (talk) 18:46, 8 February 2008 (UTC)


Look, you wiped out the links that were there before, and doing a huge blockquote looks absolutely stupid. You want to footnote everything there and paraphrase it, go ahead. That would be correct the correct way to do it. But this is not the answer. What you have added is fine, but work it in to what was there, and if you feel like paraphrasing and footnoting the pd text, go ahead. There is absolutely no reason to go and put this in the ridiculous format it's in now. And don't start doing it to other articles.--Nobunaga24 (talk) 12:19, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Nobunaga24 chose to revert / erase work that I did on the article, then I reverted it again and called for discussion here, and then he added the above comment to the "Entry of Women..." section, and I moved his comment to this new section to respond. I am offended by his use of the words "stupid" and "ridiculous" and his injunction not to edit other articles as I have edited this one. I guess i could consider calling him stupid too. But I appreciate that, despite his language here, Nobunaga shows some critical thinking skills elsewhere, in his edit history and in his user page explanation of his views on military service bios. He has the decency to acknowledge here that the "correct way" to write this article would be to use footnotes and rephrasings, which I agree with. As to his assertion there is "no reason" to do the blockquoting and put it in the format it is in now, one fully sufficient reason is: I think the blockquoting is helpful to clarify what text is merely copied so that I and other editors can write new text and can be guided in where it is helpful to seek out other sources. It does expose to the reader that the article is currently not well written and relies unduly on one source, but exposing that is entirely appropriate. It is on the path, or at least one path, to developing an improved article. doncram (talk) 19:05, 8 February 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for moving the comment, I wasn't paying attention, and clicked the wrong section. I didn't say you were stupid. I said the format is stupid and ridiculous. You made that clunky edit, then never came back to to work it into a smoother format. Like I said, I have no problem with citing and rephrasing PD stuff - if I had faster fingers and more time, I would do it myself. But this is not the way to do it, and I stand by that assertion. Blockquoting then walking away from it indefinitely leaves an awkward looking article, and leaves people who watch those articles (i.e. me) wondering if it's going to be fixed or if they have to go in there and do it themselves. I do believe you are acting in good faith, but I have to disagree with this method. And I'm sorry for being a jerk.--Nobunaga24 (talk) 01:32, 9 February 2008 (UTC)