Talk:John Smeaton (born 1976)

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Articles for Deletion[edit]

This page has been nominated for deletion. If you wish to discuss this prospect, please go Here. Regards, Lynbarn 21:26, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

If this page didn't exist, I would have had to create it.Rolf Mayo 20:23, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

This page should stay, it will eventually be expanded but for a story one day old, Smeato is a legend. Tiocfaidh Ár Lá! 20:25, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

I agree, the page should stay. The pints waiting for Smeaton at the Holiday Inn are now over 1200! Good for him! GrotesqueOldParty 19:13, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Hello all. My name is Chloe and I am a law student in Glasgow. First of all I would like to question all the petulent sounding rants that I have read. Why are you so angry? John Smeaton is an ordinary person that did an extra-ordinary thing. What is wrong with him getting a little recognition? Secondly, I can only assume that none of you are anywhere near Glasgow or, for that matter, Scotland. There is an amazing atmosphere of resilience her at the moment. EVERYONE is talking about the attack and, most importantly, the people of Glasgow's response to the attack. Would you rather that nobody celebrated local heroes? I also read somewhere else on this forum that "this is not the stuff of Wikipedia". Well I am sorry but I have seen an awful lot of what can only be described as total crap on Wikipedia since I started looking at it a couple of years ago. John Smeaton is an important figure in an important time so should this not be recognised? If not for the obvious reasons, such as that people will want to look back on this time in the future, then what about for posterity for people in a country in difficult times?

Thank you for your attention

I am Scottish and this is yet another example of people imposing personal views and not realising what Wikipedia is not.-h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 21:38, 5 July 2007 (UTC)
I'm not Scottish but I would like to remind everyone that the deletion review is taking place here so if anyone wants to have their say then it should be over there. Saying it here won't count in the final decision. I've rejigged things and tidied the talk page up a bit so it is less... random. (Emperor 00:33, 6 July 2007 (UTC))

KEEP: When terrorism hits ordinary people the perpetrators believe the effect will support their cause. Showing the details of how this man responded can only help to persuade terrorists that ordinary people will generally respond in such a way as to thwart them. On a parochial level the evidence from this event should dissuade terrorists from attacking Glaswegians or even Scotland. Keeping this entry can only help to reduce terrorist threats - deleting it would anonymise and conceal the sort of response they do not want.

The problem is that people in the AfD debate were trying to assume that Wikipedia was making some sort of moral judgement by suggesting this article should be deleted. It certainly is not a moral judgement; it's ultimately about whether this page is appropriate in an encyclopedia that'll exist for the long term.-h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 06:37, 7 July 2007 (UTC)

Delete: He is a media fad, while there is a debate on the merits of people in 50 years time asking "Who was that man that was involved in the 2007 Glasgow Airport attack?" I would say that can be answered by giving his name and what he did on the attack page and no more. The attention he is getting is no more than any other net driven fad. This is not to detract from what he did but to say he deserves a page for it is a different matter.

The discussion is closed. If you think there is grounds for deletion beyond those already debated, then you should relist for Afd. Expressing a keep or delete !vote here serves little purpose. Rockpocket 17:28, 11 July 2007 (UTC)

John or Jon?[edit]

Which is the correct spelling: John or Jon? Because if you look at this video at 00:02, his name is spelled "Jon", yet everywhere else I've seen his name, it's spelled "John." -CrookedAsterisk (contribstalk) 03:42, 4 July 2007 (UTC)

Not appearing at T in the Park[edit]

I read in The Sun (I don't buy that newspaper but I read it at work) that John Smeaton is not appearing at T in the Park due to security concerns, and this is not stated in the article.--h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 11:50, 5 July 2007 (UTC)

Mike Kerr?[edit]

The thing which really cemented John's celebrity was pulling the injured Mike Kerr away from the burning jeep without seeming to worry about his own safety. How come there's no mention of this anywhere?

I wasn't aware that he'd done that - do you mean it's just not in the article, or not mentioned elsewhere either? Regards,Lynbarn 10:12, 11 July 2007 (UTC)
Here, have a guardian link,,2118762,00.html
Another day, another paean to the man: yesterday's contribution came from Michael Kerr, whose own efforts at tackling one of the would-be terrorists were rewarded with a couple of smashed teeth, a broken leg and a supporting role in a worldwide phenomenon henceforth known as Smeatomania. "I flew at the guy a few times but he wouldn't go down. Then he punched me so hard he knocked my teeth out and sent my flying so hard I broke my leg," Kerr said with a commendable lack of machismo. "I landed next to the burning Jeep and thought it was going to explode. That was when John Smeaton dragged me to safety. He's a hero."
In other interviews John says a woman from security called him to help her move Kerr. 13:17, 11 July 2007 (UTC)

What did Smeaton actually do to Kafeel Ahmed?[edit]

He gave him one kick in the groin area, as far as I'm aware.--h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 11:23, 12 July 2007 (UTC)

My understanding was that the groin kick (banjo in glaswegian slang) was delivered by someone else. John verifiably delivered a kick to Kafeel and dragged Mike Kerr to safety. Specifics beyond that are vague. (talk) 21:34, 15 October 2009 (UTC)

Is there a name for the phenonenon?[edit]

It seems like one thing terrorist attacks are incredibly good at is taking people who were around by chance and elevating their social status based on the way they reacted. Smeaton says most people would have done what he did that day and I for one believe him, but he has this whole celebrity thing going because he was there and did what he did.

Elsewhere Rudy Giuliani is now a presidential candidate thanks largely to the boost he got from being the person to clean up after 9/11. I'm sure there are other examples but they don't come to mind.

If not I think someone should write an academic paper on the subject. Get the message across that terror attacks are counterproductive. 19:38, 13 July 2007 (UTC)

"Man of the hour"?Tomgreeny 17:29, 14 July 2007 (UTC)

Asked By ITV News[edit]

Quote Correction.

Asked by ITV News what his message to terrorists was, he said: "Glasgow doesn't accept this. Thats Just Glasgow; we'll set aboot ye."

I happen to be Glaswegian... I watched the interview in question John clearly says: "Glasgow doesn't accept this. This is Glasgow; we'll set aboot ye."

Would it be possible to reference the interview from youtube? Georgeallison 16:47, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

I haven't seen the Youtube extract, but I'm sure you're right, however, the quote on the wikipedia article is not a quote of what he said, but a quote of what he was reported as having said, hence the [Sic] added to the quote in my version. I'm not sure of the wiki guidelines for quoting from Youtube, but I strongly suspect that due to the copyrighted nature of many of the extracts hosted on Youtube, it would not be permitted. I will revert the quote to the writen reference, and direct others to join this discussion. Regards, Lynbarn 18:44, 20 July 2007 (UTC)

Article name...[edit]

Is there a reason this article has a disambiguation marker on it? Is there another John Smeaton with an article? If not, there should NOT be a parenthetical (baggage handler) after the name. If there is another John Smeaton, then the article should have a see-also redirect prominently at the top... See WP:NC and WP:DAB and WP:PRECISION for more information...--Jayron32|talk|contribs 02:29, 12 August 2007 (UTC)

Yes, Yes, see also redirect now in place. Regards, Lynbarn 09:58, 13 August 2007 (UTC)
Ah. Thanks. --Jayron32|talk|contribs 19:29, 13 August 2007 (UTC)

Now that the hype about John Smeaton has calmed down[edit]

Both the people who wanted this article deleted and the anons/new users who wanted this to be kept are no longer paying attention to this article. The anons and new users will not come back in anything like large numbers since the media is no longer making a fuss about him, so if this were considered for deletion again, we'd have to take into account that John Smeaton the baggage handler passes WP:N, WP:V and WP:RS. The only real problem here is WP:BLP1E. Will he still be significant in a year's time; is this unsuitable as a biographical article because he is notable only for one thing? It seems like a WP:COATRACK article to some extent. What do others think?-h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 18:25, 17 August 2007 (UTC)

I mean - this isn't really a biography of John Smeaton's life. It's a description of how he acted bravely in a terrorist attack, and the media and public's response to that. This article currently seems like a pseudo-biography.-h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 18:27, 17 August 2007 (UTC)
And here we are using a made up essay to try and delete something, typical! Face it you lost the AFD and remeber "YOU CAN'T DELETE AN ENCYCLOPEDIA INTO EXISTENCE" (Hypnosadist) 15:24, 18 August 2007 (UTC)
I think you're being premature. I guarantee you that it will be big news again in late December / early January. 18:42, 18 August 2007 (UTC)

Merge overturned, now he has a biography again[edit]

See this DRV.--h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 11:03, 12 September 2007 (UTC)

  • I support this. Looking at the headlines from yesterday, there was an ovation at the Labour Party conference in Bournemouth exclusively for John Smeaton and his act of bravery, not a general ovation for all persons involved in thwarting the attack (although they were praised). John Smeaton was mentioned specifically by name, unlike the police and fire personnel who attended. I would say given the continuing press coverage of John Smeaton and corresponding lack of coverage of the event that established him, he is deserving of his own article. He is another Todd Beamer or Wesley Autrey in that his notability extends timewise beyond that of the event which defines his notability, even if he is still notable for one specific incident. 13:55, 26 September 2007 (UTC)

Meeting the Queen[edit]

BBC source.--h i s s p a c e r e s e a r c h 21:57, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

This is controversial, so...[edit]

It needs discussion before we go steaming in, as it does not present JS in a positive light. There is a report that JS has exaggerated his part in the incident, and that there are others who had a bigger role in the incident, yet did not get the QGM. Mjroots (talk) 07:24, 17 March 2008 (UTC)

He doesn't appear in a single bit of CCTV footage from the day, but everyone else who have claimed to have helped on that day do. I don't think I need to say anything else. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:42, 17 March 2008 (UTC)

You have seen every single bit of CCTV footage from the day ?

Mr Smeaton said he was disappointed others had changed their story and insisted his version of events would be borne out by the CCTV footage.- Telegraph

-- (talk) 18:47, 17 March 2008 (UTC)

I feel thatthis should be included in wikipedia as an "It was reported that..." item. I first saw this on the BBC news site this morning. The whole notability for the item is predicated on the publicity John's involvement generated - it should therefore cover the negative as well as the positive. Regards, Lynbarn (talk) 21:51, 17 March 2008 (UTC)

John Smeaton said in reference 9, more than 3 months previously, that he was disappointed the others weren't recognised as he was since "They did exactly the same as me, probably a bit more. If I put myself in their position, I wouldn't be particularly happy if someone else was grabbing all the attention." (last paragraph) - should this not be re-referenced for this section? (talk) 22:40, 4 October 2008 (UTC)

Glasgow slang[edit]

I know ye wee fannys (more Glasgow slang) want to use Glasgow terminology in your spelling throughout the quotes of this Mr Smeaton. But not. He spoke in English. None of us give a damn how he pronounced his words. Spell the quotes in correct English. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:40, 11 October 2008 (UTC)

The language used in the article is that of the sources we are quoting from. David Underdown (talk) 09:23, 13 October 2008 (UTC)

Don't come awn wikipedia wi' yoor Imperialist bollocks mate we'll set aboot yae. Racooon (talk) 22:06, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

Requested move (12 October 2009)[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was no consensus to move. Jafeluv (talk) 08:07, 12 October 2009 (UTC)

John Smeaton (baggage handler)John Smeaton (Queen's Gallantry Medal recipient) — Mr Smeaton has not officially been a baggage handler for a long time, and I sincerely doubt it is even fair or decent to suggest that being a baggage handler is what he was originally known for. Neither does it explain how he came to be a public speaker, columnist and political candidate. All of these things stem from his intervention during the 2007 airport attack, for which he received the QGM medal, and therefore I cannot see any problem with John Smeaton (Queen's Gallantry Medal recipient) as a better title for the article than John Smeaton (baggage handler). MickMacNee (talk) 15:10, 29 September 2009 (UTC)

Oh dear - completely agree. --Cameron Scott (talk) 15:24, 29 September 2009 (UTC)

Not sure of the merits of the move, but since when VC recipients require disambiguation we simpy use (VC), (QGM) might well suffice in this case. On the other hand it is his actions when employed as a baggage handler taht first brought him to notice, and more people will probably recognise him as who is meant by using baggage hadler, than using QGM. David Underdown (talk) 15:36, 29 September 2009 (UTC)
Quite right, most people know him as "the baggage handler" and the article would be more easily recognised as "John Smeaton (baggage handler)" than "John Smeaton (Queen's Gallantry Medal recipient)" in my opinion.--Vintagekits (talk) 16:49, 29 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose move, his notablity is not based around receiving the Queen's Gallantry Medal so I dont think it is an appropriate disbamb. I wouldnt be opposed if good alternative suggestions were put forward.--Vintagekits (talk) 16:46, 29 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose He is known for his role related to the 2007 Glasgow International Airport attack, not for recieving the QGM. YeshuaDavidTalk • 18:07, 29 September 2009 (UTC)
    • In that case, John Smeaton (Glasgow Airport worker) would actually make more sense. 'Baggage handling' or the 'baggage handling areas' didn't come into it at all. It makes you wonder what the article would have been called had just been a traveller catching a flight. MickMacNee (talk) 19:19, 29 September 2009 (UTC)
      • My issue with that is that he is most well known as and known for and known by. Just look at the articles about him from the start in 2007 it was Baggage handler becomes web hero and now even up to today its Scottish baggage handler who became a hero after he tackled the Glasgow airport bombers is hoping to break into politics.--Vintagekits (talk) 19:48, 29 September 2009 (UTC)
        • He is associated with 'baggage handler' in Google in 5,170 results, and with 'glasgow airport worker' in 18,700 results. The out of date description 'baggage handler', while still obviously a handy tabloid moniker, is clearly not the best disambiguator if we are choosing descriptions that directly associate Smeaton and the attacks, if we aren't to use the direct association of the gallantry medal he received for his part in them. If we are stooping to using tabloid monikers it should surely be 'have a go hero' or some other such unprofessional tosh. MickMacNee (talk) 18:53, 30 September 2009 (UTC)
          • Why are you still counting Google page hits? Haven't you heard? They are meaningless. This should be well-known, at least by Wikipedia editors of long-standing, by now. They are estimates, not counts. You can show yourself how meaningless they are by looking at the final counts on the last pages of results (which themselves are capped figures, note). Any argument based on counting Google hits is a fallacy built upon sand. Uncle G (talk) 20:05, 30 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Vintagekits and Yeshua. --John (talk) 15:39, 30 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Support. HE didn't receive nationwide media coverage or receive the QGM for being a baggage handler. (talk) 18:08, 1 October 2009 (UTC)
  • Wait: He is standing in the Glasgow North East by-election, 2009. If he wins change it to John Smeaton (MSP) since that would be his function and title. Jubilee♫clipman 21:00, 7 October 2009 (UTC)
  • Unsure: What may be more appropriate is to rename John Smeaton to John Smeaton (Civil Engineer), then John Smeaton (Baggage Handler) could become John Smeaton Just a thought, Regards, Lynbarn (talk) 12:15, 8 October 2009 (UTC)
  • John Smeaton. And add a DAB page. The appendage is POV editorializing, it puts the reader on notice that the subject is "X". It does a disservice to the encyclopedia, using the device of (Baggage Handler) should only be used for fictional characters or historical subjects and never if possible for BLP. His notability is not for his former employment, it derives from a number of things - heroism, award winner, political candidate, even internet meme or news celebrity. I think it's well past time we remove this "scarlet letter" that implicitly seeks to 'remind us of his place.' (talk) 16:14, 8 October 2009 (UTC)
  • Support. Most of the page names listed as links in Special:WhatLinksHere/John Smeaton look like their links are for the civil engineer. Move to John Smeaton (Queen's Gallantry Medal recipient) (with the medal name in full) seems to be as good a name as any. (As initials for medals, VC is well known; QGM less so and my first impulse on seeing 3 letters starting with Q is to look for a table of ham radio jargon (as in QSL etc).) Anthony Appleyard (talk) 10:03, 11 October 2009 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.


I agree with the proposer that the current title is a little misleading, especially now that JS has gone on to further things such as standing for parliament. Rather than go to the complexity of putting in another RFM, I was wondering if people agreed with the principle that a different title would be better? How about simply John Smeaton (b.1976)? --Pretty Green (talk) 15:41, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

WP:QUALIFIER specifically says that year of birth is not a good qualifier. Remember, the qualifier is not necessarily intended to fully describe the person, but to describe what they're notable for sufficiently that people will recognise them as what they're after. So, someone starts to type "John Smeaton" in the search box on the left, the prompt comes up, and they will see that they have two choices: simply John Smeaton, and John Smeaton (baggage handler) - most people will realise which one they want. David Underdown (talk) 16:13, 29 October 2009 (UTC)
Good point, wish I'd thought of it. A 252 year difference in birth dates is not going to be ambiguous for people looking for either a historical engineer or a currently living person. This title is abysmal, borderline offensive, and most definitely not accurate any more. Support a relist. MickMacNee (talk) 19:04, 30 October 2009 (UTC)
Mr Smeaton is not notable for being a baggage handler (mind you it's an honest job, nothing wrong with it as such, although the bags are always a wee bit slow to come out at Abbotsinch for my taste). No, the Smeatonator is notable for being a hero of the War on Terror, a recipient of the Queen's Gallantry award, and an inspirational symbol of the indomitable spirit of the British people in general, and the folk of Glasgow in particular. I know who my money would be on in a square go between John Smeaton and Osama bin Laden. Support relist.Irvine22 (talk) 19:40, 18 November 2009 (UTC)

Support - current title is unacceptable, he's not a baggage handler any more and that is not what he is notable for. I would prefer moving it to John Smeaton (Queen's Gallantry Medal recipient) but the date of birth would be preferable to the current title. Alex McKee (talk) 15:03, 19 November 2009 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was page moved. Vegaswikian (talk) 00:05, 27 November 2009 (UTC)

John Smeaton (baggage handler)John Smeaton (born 1976) — (see talk page) --MickMacNee (talk) 16:35, 19 November 2009 (UTC)

Per further comments after the last failed request above, let's try this. MickMacNee (talk) 16:35, 19 November 2009 (UTC)

  • Support as nominator. MickMacNee (talk) 16:35, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Support - Mr Smeaton is no longer a baggage handler, as the article currently notes, and in any case he is not notable for being a baggage hander. He's notable for approaching a suicide bomber in mid-martyrdom and booting him in the balls.Irvine22 (talk) 18:30, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Support per nom. The disambiguator needs to be changed, and giving his year of birth seems like the best way of doing it - "(hero)" or similar being out of the question. :) Tevildo (talk) 20:29, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Comment - See WP:QUALIFIER - Years of birth and death should not be used in a page title to distinguish between people of the same name (readers are more likely to be seeking this information than to already know it). Snappy (talk) 13:54, 23 November 2009 (UTC)
    Yes, and as above, the 252 year difference in birth dates seems to suggest this wouldn't be as confusing to readers as you might think MickMacNee (talk) 22:58, 23 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Suggestion John Smeaton (Glasgow International Airport attack) or similar as that is what he is notable for. Bevo74 (talk) 20:05, 23 November 2009 (UTC)
    I think qualifiers are supposed to be descriptive, like footballer, lawyer, and not refer to things like events. MickMacNee (talk) 22:58, 23 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Bad title. Support moving away from "baggage handler", because he is not and has never been notable for being a baggage handler. However, "born 1976" doesn't help the reader find who they're looking for. (talk) 00:05, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

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