Talk:List of countries by incarceration rate

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More sources and lists[edit]

Incarceration rates worldwide.gif

The text below is from the image description page for Image:Incarceration rates worldwide.gif (the chart to the right):

Selected incarceration rates worldwide. The stats source is the World Prison Population List (7th edition) PDF file. By Roy Walmsley. Published in 2007. International Centre for Prison Studies. School of Law, King's College London. For editions 1 through 7: [1]. From the same source see also the World Prison Brief - Highest to Lowest Figures. Compare many nations. Select from menu: prison population total, prison population rate, percentage of pre-trial detainees / remand prisoners within the prison population, percentage of female prisoners within the prison population, percentage of foreign prisoners within the prison population and occupancy rate. See also: Human Development Report 2007/2008 - Prison population (per 100,000 people). UNDP (United Nations Development Programme), using data from the World Prison Population List. --Timeshifter (talk) 21:27, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

I wonder about the reliability, and timeliness of these statistics, the ICPS does not release any annual briefs since 2007, so there is a strong chance this information is five years out of date. I strongly suspect the numbers for Rwanda are out of date. Nor do they source where this information is from. There is a strange selection of data - why do some micro states and territories appear on the list, but not some more significant stats not appear? I find this unreliable. Ottawakismet (talk) 15:20, 6 September 2012 (UTC)
Their statistics are continually updated. Click the links in the main list to go to the sources and dates: --Timeshifter (talk) 14:11, 7 October 2012 (UTC)

World Female Imprisonment List[edit]

Info on the study:

PDF file of the study:

How to create the long table[edit]

There is an explanation of how the long HTML table from the source page was quickly converted to the wiki table here. For the explanation see the example section of this page:

In the incarceration rate column "c" stands for "circa" which means "about" or "around[edit]

Is that really necessary? What idiot doesn't know that 'circa' is used to mean about or around? This is supposed to be an encyclopedia not a guide for America's least intelligent!--Xania Flag of Italy.svgtalk 21:33, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

Please see WP:CIVIL. Many people do not know what it means. Therefore please stop insulting those people who don't know what it means. There are probably many things you don't know about, so therefore you are an idiot according to your dumbass logic. :) --Timeshifter (talk) 11:35, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Templates for deletion nomination of Template:Lists of countries[edit]

Nuvola apps important.svgTemplate:Lists of countries has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for Deletion page. Thank you. Cybercobra (talk) 07:09, 27 June 2009 (UTC)

List updated[edit]

I updated the list. I used this quick method:

It is too difficult and time-consuming for me to add flag icons and links for each of 216 countries. I got this far:

You can copy what I have done, and use your own sandbox pages to do further editing. I don't think the country links and flag icons are really necessary. Especially since the numbers in this list change at least yearly. I can quickly update the list, but not the links and flag icons. --Timeshifter (talk) 15:36, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

The list needs to be updated again. If you click the source link you can see that the page has moved, and if you check the current information listed on the new page by the ICPS, their information is newer than this. For example, Rwanda is now ranked at #2. The new information is at: -- Hyathin (talk) 08:39, 18 June 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the link. I updated the reference link in the article. Someone needs to update the list. --Timeshifter (talk) 15:03, 18 June 2011 (UTC)


What is up with Canada? It is rate and ranking don't line up. It has 140 per capita yet is ranked way lower. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:36, 18 April 2014 (UTC)


Does anyone have numbers for Cuba? I realise many statistical organisations boycott Cuba because of sanctions but I think this is childish for wikipedia. It can't be that hard to find out. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Drunkenduncan (talkcontribs) 09:57, 9 May 2011 (UTC)

If you find an incarceration rate for Cuba, and a reference, feel free to add both to the article. Wikipedia is only as childish as you, an editor, allow it to be. --Timeshifter (talk) 15:06, 18 June 2011 (UTC)

List updated 4 November 2011[edit]

I updated the list again. See Commons:Convert tables and charts to wiki code or image files and the section titled something like "List of countries by incarceration rate". --Timeshifter (talk) 06:39, 4 November 2011 (UTC)

UK Imprisonment rate[edit]

I have encountered study after study that finds, by ratio, the UK Government imprisons by far the most men. The same studies confirm that the US is indeed second. But second to the UK. How someone managed to get post-9/11 Britain down to 87th position is a question only for amusement or to reveal a coverup.

Even the list Itself reveals the UK Government's record - just look at the number of British territories in the top 20! And yet we are supposed to believe that -while the US is number 1, fellow "War On Terror" regime Britain is Eighty Seventh. You're having a laugh, and I would suggest this page be replaced entirely with any number of studies that can give you the actual statistics. (talk) 17:56, 8 November 2011 (UTC)

Links? --Timeshifter (talk) 13:42, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

19 December 2011 update of list numbers and country order[edit]

I updated the list again. See Commons:Convert tables and charts to wiki code or image files and the section titled something like "List of countries by incarceration rate". Note that when the numbers are updated the order of the countries changes also. --Timeshifter (talk) 13:39, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Was the list updated (in the source) before or after November 2011? Because if they update is after that, then it's clearly inaccurate. Here's a source saying 2900+ people were arrested in Bahrain in 2011 (Making it's 200+ per 100,000), while it's shown as 130s. Mohamed CJ (talk) 17:47, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

russia isnt second[edit] i changed it now look at the data closer its 534 you idiots, thank you once again giving russia a bad image see this people now see it all around the world, wiki is so disgusting here some kind of anti russia cult changing data so russia always look bad, sure there are many russians in prison but its not second --Akin12255 (talk) 00:49, 21 January 2012 (UTC)

Thanks you for drawing my attention to the fact that Russia is 5th, not 2nd. These differences, which may seem arcane to some, do make a difference to sophisticated New Yorkers such as myself.

Adding Population[edit]

Would you consider adding a column for population? This would provide a context for the incarceration rate and permit easier calculation of multi-country averages. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Efenna (talkcontribs) 01:29, 28 February 2012 (UTC)

The figures are per 100,000 population. It already is in context! It's scaled this way to give exactly the information you're asking for. (talk) 06:00, 29 April 2013 (UTC)
Adding a population column would be very time-consuming. It would have to be done manually each time the incarceration rates were updated for the whole list. For those who want population numbers there is this: List of countries by population. --Timeshifter (talk) 19:23, 29 April 2013 (UTC)

No, the population of each country should be added, and made sortable like the others, because it adds context to the chart. "Per 100,000" is not the same. Also, land mass would be interesting, but not as much. And it isn't that time-consuming, not for the value added. "This would provide a context for the incarceration rate and permit easier calculation of multi-country averages."

Wikipedia is just controlled by people who don't care about USA human rights abuses, and who are being paid by the USA government to promote its corruption. The truth is that before the present time, incarceration for long periods of time was a very rare punishment, and that despite what we are told, it's a disguised modern form of slavery. It's really important how anyone spends a day, a month, or a year, at any time in human history. So yes, adding population and some other interesting columns and information would be a great service to humanity. And it belongs in the article, for the sake of care for human justice and the well-being of societies. This is all an out-growth of Eugenics and the Puritanical American mindset of sterilizing retarded people and criminals. People blind to that should be the ones incarcerated, and God will certainly attend to that.

Until then, this is the case I make for adding at least country population to the chart.

Well, of course, one could just meld this chart with a population chart in an Excel document or Open Office equivalent. Of course. But if it's that simple, why not have such a combination near at hand here?

Oliverhaart (talk) 12:04, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

Criticism - alternative list[edit]

Critics say it would be better to compare prison rate to crime rate. Has anyone actually produced such a list ? (Though how do you define crime rate ? - what is a crime in one country may not be in others). -- Beardo (talk) 23:30, 11 April 2012 (UTC)

I just came here in order to ask exactly the same. (talk) 12:26, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

It wouldn't be a bad idea to have an additional list on the same page. Stefán Örvarr Sigmundsson (talk) 22:11, 14 April 2012 (UTC)
Since the "crime rate" is hard to measure, and what is defined as a "crime" differs radically from country to country, this would be a hard list to make and an even harder list to check the accuracy of. Geoffrey.landis (talk) 13:56, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

Source is inaccurate/outdated[edit]

In 2011, more than 2900 people were arrested for protest-related activities according to a government independent inquiry (BICI). Bahrain's population is 1.2M (only 600k are citizens). So if you only count those arrested in 2011 (2900/1.2M*100k), it will be 241 per 100,000. The article here says it's 136! It's clearly outdated by more than a year. Mohamed CJ (talk) 17:42, 21 May 2012 (UTC)

You are free to update the list if you find reliable parties to cite. Stefán Örvarr Sigmundsson (talk) 21:21, 23 May 2012 (UTC)
You quoted the number of people arrested in Bahrain; not the number incarcarated. Unless all of those arrested are still incarcarated, it's not enough information to say that the number is out of date. Geoffrey.landis (talk) 13:56, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

Virgin Islands? Guam?[edit]

It seems incorrect to list entities such as the U.S. Virgin Islands and Guam on a "list of countries", since they are not countries. Except for Puerto Rico, these are all pretty low population. These should be either folded in to the U.S., or else put into one conglomerated item of the rate in U.S. protectorates. (Well, OK, I'd accept Puerto Rico as a special case). Geoffrey.landis (talk) 13:56, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

2012 October 7. List completely updated from source[edit]

See: User:Timeshifter/Sandbox28 and User:Timeshifter/Sandbox3. Please use your own sandboxes for further work.

Data for this article's list was retrieved October 7, 2012 from the source table here:

That source table was converted to table wikitext via these instructions: commons:Commons:Convert tables and charts to wiki code or image files#List of countries by incarceration rate. Redirects have been created. See Category:Country data templates and Category:Country data redirects. It is now possible to rapidly update the complete list from the source at any time, and do it with flags, and working country and territory links. I only had to do the links for one entry manually:

Note: "c." (circa) indicates "approximately." It should be put after the number, or numerical sorting of the rate column will not work, even with data-sort-type="number" in the column header. It is no longer necessary to put "c" in a separate column though. It is now possible to force the numerical sort order of a column by adding data-sort-type="number" to the column header. See: Help:Sorting and the section on numerical sorting problems. So a separate notes column is no longer necessary. The single reference for all the data is linked from the beginning of the article. So it does not need to be repeated after every number.

For consistency please use the same reference for all the countries and territories possible. If rates for additional countries or territories are found they can be entered in the table, and their references can be put directly after the rate numbers. This will no longer break numerical sorting of the rates column. A note above the table can specify that all the data comes from one source unless indicated otherwise by separate references in the table. There is no need to repeat the main reference over two hundred times in the table. --Timeshifter (talk) 21:23, 7 October 2012 (UTC)

China prison population numbers[edit]

I entered a user feedback, but perhaps I should restate it here with a reference. Apologies for a duplication.

I believe that a reference should be made to 6.8 million people being held in the Reform Through Labor camp system (lao gai - 劳改). Here is one reference pointer: — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jmgronski (talkcontribs) 15:00, 30 January 2013 (UTC)

The total number of all types of prisoners varies widely. See Re-education through labor and Laogai. See also:
I am going to use the rate of 170 per 100,000 population given in the above link. It seems to have the most credible info. --Timeshifter (talk) 22:07, 30 January 2013 (UTC)

What about North Korea?[edit]

I don't see them on the list. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:36, 7 April 2013 (UTC)

North Korea is not listed in the source document online: --Timeshifter (talk) 03:06, 10 April 2013 (UTC)
I'm fairly sure we could use another source such as this NY Times article or this from ABC.Coinmanj (talk) 03:39, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
It does not look like a very firm number. I don't see how it could be. It's North Korea! Probably belongs in Wikipedia articles on North Korea so it can be put in context as speculation.
Plus it is hard enough updating this list periodically without having to enter countries individually. I upgrade the whole list at once. See previous talk sections. I wouldn't bother to enter info for individual countries in future updates Someone else would have to do that. And they often screw up the formatting of the table when they do. I figure if my main source does not feel confident to put out data for a country, then there is no reliable data for that country. --Timeshifter (talk) 16:20, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
That sounds reasonable to me, updating this list does look like a complete bear. Perhaps then, simply adding a note to the bottom of the list with a link to the main Wiki article Prisons in North Korea would suffice? That would at least get the county on the page. Coinmanj (talk) 19:36, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
Good idea. --Timeshifter (talk) 13:20, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

2013 June 9. List completely updated from source[edit]

For info on how it was done see commons:Commons:Convert tables and charts to wiki code or image files and the section "List of countries by incarceration rate". --Timeshifter (talk) 19:19, 9 June 2013 (UTC)

San Marino[edit]

I wonder if San Marino criminals serve in Italy or if they send foreign criminals to their home countries. YOMAL SIDOROFF-BIARMSKII (talk) 05:39, 8 March 2014 (UTC)

North Korea... any other significant entries missing?...[edit]

N. Korea is not in the list, though this is addressed at the end. Are they any other significant countries, territories, or independent city-states or such that are not on this list, is what I am wondering... (talk) 00:51, 2 April 2014 (UTC)

2014 June 1. Table updated completely from source[edit]

I downloaded the table on June 1, and got around today to converting it. The format of the source has changed. So I need to update the how-to page for converting the HTML table to a wikitext table:

See the section titled "List of countries by incarceration rate". --Timeshifter (talk) 19:04, 6 June 2014 (UTC)

@Timeshifter: The new alphabetical ordering of this table is somewhat confusing, since it doesn't list the countries according to their incarceration rates. Will the original ordering of the table be restored? Jarble (talk) 23:46, 12 June 2014 (UTC)
It is too difficult to maintain the table in highest to lowest order. That order can change with a single country update by any random editor. Plus one gets highest to lowest order by clicking the rate header.
I updated the how-to page: Commons:Convert tables and charts to wiki code or image files. --Timeshifter (talk) 00:27, 14 June 2014 (UTC)

Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina/Republika Srpska are one country[edit]

Federation of Bosnia and Republika Srpska are for some reason listed as separate entities here, while they're in fact both part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, its just one country. This would be like listing every US state independently, it makes no sense. From the wikipedia page for Republika Srpska: "The Constitution of Republika Srpska defines it as a territorially unified, indivisible and inalienable constitutional and legal entity of Bosnia and Herzegovina".

I'd fix this myself if I knew how to consolidate the separate results into one. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:13, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

The source list has always included rates for some dependent territories, subnational areas, etc.. I clarified the column heading further.
We could expand the title of the article too, but that would make it long and unwieldy. Very few people complain about having the rates for a few dependent territories, subnational areas, etc..
See Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Republika Srpska. Both are on the source list. Bosnia and Herzegovina is not on the source list. I copied what the source list provided. --Timeshifter (talk) 14:15, 11 July 2014 (UTC)

This list is sorted in the wrong order[edit]

Instead of sorting the countries by incarceration rate, the table sorts the countries in alphebetical order. Is it possible to fix this? Jarble (talk) 04:58, 16 September 2014 (UTC)

It is too difficult to maintain the table in highest to lowest order. That order can change with a single country update by any random editor. Plus one gets highest to lowest order by clicking the rate header. --Timeshifter (talk) 16:00, 16 September 2014 (UTC)

Why is the list alphabetically, rather than starting with the highest rate to the lowest, or vice versa. You wiki people are just weird with your rules. The only reason people would come to this page is to look at the numbers, not by country. SMDH at you goofballs. No wonder nobody takes you seriously. Re-order it in a meaningful way. Not some way that makes you all fell good. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:3769:EE00:C01D:CC9D:6F30:8654 (talk) 04:20, 14 March 2015 (UTC)

Cluelessness is allowed among Wikipedia commenters. But I clarified the sorting info and instructions further. --Timeshifter (talk) 05:40, 14 March 2015 (UTC)
@Timeshifter: It would be possible to automate the sorting process with a Lua module, of course. Should we request a new module at WP:Module requests? Jarble (talk) 04:00, 12 July 2015 (UTC)
I know nothing about Lua modules. I update the list around once a year using this method: commons:Commons:Convert tables and charts to wiki code or image files#List of countries by incarceration rate. I have since discovered that I may be able to use the Visual Editor in the process too. But I have no idea whether any of it is compatible with Lua modules. I don't want any process that is time consuming though. Feel free to research any of this. --Timeshifter (talk) 05:56, 12 July 2015 (UTC)

Thanks to Timeshifter, et al.[edit]

I visit this page regularly, when I'm writing an article on politics or human rights, and yet I've never looked on the Talk page before. This time I was trying to figure out how to combine the different amounts for all the UK territories, to see if that's how someone had arrived at a statistic about it's incarceration rates. I'm pretty sure the answer is not that I just add them all together, but that's the best I can do - I suck at statistical math. So I was hoping someone in the Talk page had already asked about how to make such calculations.

I think this is one of the most appalling talk pages I've seen on Wikipedia, and I recently had to report a guy who claimed all the editors on a page were Feminazis working undercover for Planned Parenthood (I didn't report him for that specifically). But this page is almost as bad. People whining that everyone who speaks English must know what circa means - I guess it doesn't occur to anyone Wikipedia might be used by kids as a research portal? Accusing Wiki editors of childishly boycotting Cuba's statistics instead of simply asking if they are available? And people going off on racist and psycho-religious rants because someone isn't willing to manually change the data around in the source material, to present it exactly the way (s)he wants it. It's galling the conceit and bile people will spew at strangers.

In particular I want to thank Timeshifter for all the effort he has put into this page, and offer my own sympathies at the crap he's had to take to do it. It's amazing to me how many people "walk" onto this page and talk to another person like they were sub-human, because they aren't clever enough to use a sorting arrow in a column header. And as someone who keeps trying to get her organization to use live-data pre-fab reports, while they keep insisting on me manually creating pretty little condensed reports, I am especially grateful for the time that must've been spent in front of an infinite spreadsheet. So from a humble research junkie, my thanks to all the pages contributors, but obviously most particularly Timeshifter. CleverTitania (talk) 08:13, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

Hi CleverTitania, and thanks! Somehow I missed your comment until now. I looked at your user page and it seems you do a lot of web stuff yourself. Wikipedia is definitely the wild west, but I can usually take all the crap shoveled out here and elsewhere on Wikipedia talk pages. I think it is a guy thing, and we probably enjoy the back and forth too much at times. :) I have found more interesting things to do though, and so I let most of it slide. But appreciation makes anybody's day, and so thanks again. --Timeshifter (talk) 06:18, 12 July 2015 (UTC)

[Possible] correlation to drug use/strictness[edit]

Anyone knows if anything correlates best with the rate (except for maybe testosterone..)? Males are 50/50 mostly anywhere, so if can only explain, higher rates of males vs. females, not huge difference between countries.. Poverty (Africa is certainly poor)? Drug use? Death penalty?

The war on drugs, seems to be it. If you subtract drug-related incarcerations, would you get a much more uniform distribution among countries? Even murder/violence rate (that is high in America, and correlates(?), or not, with drug use), is probably not a predictor (see: List of countries by intentional homicide rate), as some other countries (South Africa?) have much violence (murder?). It's ok to speculate here WP:OR, but not out of the talk page. If anyone thinks they know, at least can guide the search for good statistics - that I think would serve well in the article. comp.arch (talk) 20:21, 18 August 2015 (UTC)

See: Incarceration in the United States. It gives some possible reasons for its higher incarceration rate. See also: Mandatory sentencing and War on Drugs. --Timeshifter (talk) 12:27, 19 August 2015 (UTC)

Removed flags for now[edit]

I discovered that the flags were causing the rows to not be aligned. Especially at small font sizes. Look at the bottom of the chart to see. Check various versions of the article with and without flags.

The row misalignment caused by the flags alone only shows up clearly at smaller font sizes. It is most clear at the bottom of the chart.

So for now, please do not return the flags. Right now the rows in the country chart are perfectly aligned. See:

There is a patch for row numbering is being tested now.

Please see Phabricator thread:

jquery.tablesorter: Add support for a "fixed" column.

From that thread there is recent notice of a patch for row numbering that is being tested now as an option for tables in the MediaWiki software. See:

So we may soon no longer need all the convoluted methods we have been working on to get row numbering that stays aligned. We will also get flags back once the patch discussed in Phabricator is implemented. Then we can also add a notes column, references within the chart, etc.. --Timeshifter (talk) 07:05, 1 September 2015 (UTC)

I don't know what the holdup is with the patch being implemented. See phab:T42618. --Timeshifter (talk) 09:48, 30 November 2015 (UTC)

Sorting in mobile view[edit]

The sorting does not work in mobile view. The second header row is just empty (now sorting arrows) and clicking into those fields has no effect. (After switching to desktop mode it works on mobiles too.) —2A01:598:88C0:F21D:1:2:C800:169D (talk) 19:59, 11 November 2015 (UTC)

I don't have a cell phone, so I can not see this. If it is a bug, maybe someone can see if it has been reported at Wikipedia:Phabricator. --Timeshifter (talk) 18:58, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

External links[edit]

Per the external links guideline, Cannabis Wiki is not an appropriate entry here - I've removed it. Nikkimaria (talk) 15:58, 24 December 2015 (UTC)

List of countries and U.S. states by incarceration rate. List has rates for countries and U.S. states. Sortable by rate. It is a unique list in that rates for US states can be directly compared to rates for nations.
User:Nikkimaria. You wrote that number 12 on WP:ELNO is why you removed it. "Open wikis, except those with a substantial history of stability and a substantial number of editors. Mirrors or forks of Wikipedia should not be linked."
That wiki has been around since around 2007. At least that is when I started editing there. The wiki is stable, and has had many editors from around the world. Is the reason why you removed the link because the wiki is about cannabis? --Timeshifter (talk) 16:38, 24 December 2015 (UTC)
No - that the wiki is about cannabis makes sense in context. However, the article being linked is explicitly mirroring the content of two Wikipedia articles. Further, there are relatively few editors - that exception is usually applied to wikis with thousands. Nikkimaria (talk) 01:04, 25 December 2015 (UTC)
Well then, I am struggling to find a logical reason why you would delete such a relevant article. People are interested in easily comparing the rates of states with the rates of countries. I believe you are making this up as you go along. The fact that the content mirrors two Wikipedia articles is a good thing, not a bad thing. That means the article is well referenced. And there are relatively few wikis at Wikia with thousands of editors. It is zealous deletionists such as yourself that drive away many editors. I suggest you consider this in your editing. See this timeline below of the number of editors.
Active editors on English Wikipedia over time.png
--Timeshifter (talk) 12:03, 26 December 2015 (UTC)
The quote from the guideline that you yourself provided states that Wikipedia mirrors should not be linked, so I'm not sure how you can conclude that I'm making that up. I also don't understand your point about the article being "well referenced", nor can the removal of ELs be linked to declining editor numbers. You're welcome to take the issue to WP:ELN for another opinion if you like, but for me it's clear this link should be excluded. Nikkimaria (talk) 19:30, 27 December 2015 (UTC)
It is not a mirror. It is a synthesis. How difficult is it to understand that an article synthesized from Wikipedia articles (with mostly the same references) is not well referenced. Editors that make up rules as they go along, or do not understand them well, drive away many other editors over the years. So I am still waiting for a logical reason to exclude this external link. I can assume good faith for awhile, and I do. --Timeshifter (talk) 04:48, 28 December 2015 (UTC)
Whether it's a mirror or a fork, we still should not include it. "An article synthesized from Wikipedia articles (with mostly the same references) is not well referenced". Nikkimaria (talk) 14:02, 28 December 2015 (UTC)
My bad on my wording. I struck out the mistake in my comment. Wikipedia articles do not survive a long time with bad references. So since the external link article came from a synthesis of a couple wikipedia articles (and other info), many of the references are good ones already accepted as good ones in the Wikipedia articles. Also, it is not a mirror or a fork. It is a synthesis from various sources. So the WP:ELNO guideline does not say it is a bad external link. --Timeshifter (talk) 15:11, 28 December 2015 (UTC)
Wikipedia articles can survive for years with bad or insufficient references, as a browse through categories like this one will demonstrate. This is one of several reasons why Wikipedia itself is not considered a reliable source. Your description of the site matches our definition of a Wikipedia fork, excluding it under ELNO. Nikkimaria (talk) 15:32, 28 December 2015 (UTC)

(unindent). See Wikipedia:Mirrors and forks. The article is not a mirror. It is not even really a fork. Just because a list uses some of the same data sources as a list from a Wikipedia article does not make it a fork. You are stretching and wiki-lawyering. The main source of the international data, World Prison Brief, was around long before the Wikipedia article. It is used as a source for many non-Wikipedia articles with lists and charts on the web. Those articles are used as references and external links for many Wikipedia articles. According to your logic all those external articles could not be used as external links just because they incorporate a similar list as the Wikipedia article. The WP:ELNO rule you are using was not meant for what you are trying to do. It is for forks that are only slightly changed from the Wikipedia article. And so linking to them serves no useful purpose. I suggest you learn to use the spirit of a rule, and not your personal interpretation. I recognize another prickly know-it-all editor in you. Being one myself. You are driving away editors. See where the World Prison Brief site pages are linked from on Wikipedia via the search below. It is a good reference.

--Timeshifter (talk) 00:19, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

Even if you want to argue that the article you wish to link to is not a fork, it is still from an open wiki with relatively few contributors, and so should still be excluded. This interpretation is entirely consistent with previous consensus at WP:ELN regarding similar sites.
World Prison Brief, on the other hand, would not be excluded under that criterion. Whether it is a good reference or not is immaterial as you are not proposing using it directly as a reference here. But just as a Wikipedia article that cites that source would not be a good reference, so too another wiki citing it. Nikkimaria (talk) 03:19, 29 December 2015 (UTC)
The wiki has had many contributors over the years. Mostly anonymous ones from around the world. And it is stable. But I am no longer going to argue about the number of contributors for now. I might continue this discussion later though, here, or elsewhere. I do not agree with your interpretations of the guideline. If you are correct, then the guideline needs to mention a number of editors. And be further clarified as to its reasoning. I see no logic in it. The number of editors in the wiki does not determine the quality of an external link. Many websites that are allowed as external links have very few editors. So this bias against open wikis is illogical. What is more relevant is whether there are active admins on a wiki. They determine the quality of articles, and whether open vandalism stands. Vandalism is not allowed to stand on this wiki. It is removed, and the IP or user name blocked. --Timeshifter (talk) 11:41, 29 December 2015 (UTC)

Table fully updated 1 October 2016 from source[edit]

For info on how it was done see:

--Timeshifter (talk) 21:35, 1 October 2016 (UTC)

Recommend color change for "no data" in world map[edit]

The light gray color of the "no data" countries in the world map blend in too much with the light blue countries. It makes North Korea look like it has a low-moderate incarceration rate. I recommend a more distinctive color for "no data" countries. Perhaps black? Or red? --JHP (talk) 14:44, 23 April 2018 (UTC)

I suggest leaving notes here:
--Timeshifter (talk) 03:01, 24 April 2018 (UTC)
Talk page for the map has been started:
commons:File talk:Prisoners world map png2.png
--Timeshifter (talk) 00:36, 10 June 2018 (UTC)

Table fully updated on June 8, 2018[edit]

For info on how it is done more quickly see:

--Timeshifter (talk) 08:29, 8 June 2018 (UTC)

Table fully updated on 18 October 2018[edit]

See how it was done here:

--Timeshifter (talk) 02:43, 19 October 2018 (UTC)

Youth incarceration table for the US, necessary?[edit]

This article has a global scope. I don't disagree youth incarceration in the US is a significant issue, but virtually every country has youth imprisoned. If I wanted, I could drum up data on youth imprisonment over time for Australia (I am Australian) and make a table. If everyone got a table, what is basically a list article would become bloated. Wouldn't it be better to just have the current number of American imprisoned youths, and the link to youth imprisonment in the United States?

For instance, in 2014, 22,000 juveniles were imprisoned in Brazil:

Revoran (talk) 03:31, 12 November 2018 (UTC)

By the way, apologies for screwing up the main list table by adding the wrong numbers. That was my bad. Glad to see you fixed it. Revoran (talk) 04:26, 12 November 2018 (UTC)
World Prison Brief numbers sometimes include juvenile incarceration in the total incarceration numbers. For example;
So it is important to know the exceptions. And since US leads in incarceration rate, it is important to know that there are even more not included in the main table. Lists are summaries. People don't want to have to go to another page and decipher a long article to find what is easily found in a list article.
And we have the space. See: WP:NOTPAPER
If juveniles are not included in World Prison Brief total numbers for Brazil, then feel free to add a note for Brazil.
Maybe start a separate list for juvenile incarceration rates by country if you find enough numbers. Someone may have already done so online, and we can copy it to Wikipedia.
--Timeshifter (talk) 04:39, 12 November 2018 (UTC)

Initial sorting by descending incarceration rate. Rank order column[edit]

If someone wants to update the table completely, and put it initially in descending order by incarceration rate, I have no objection.

The rank order column could be integrated in the table. It is much easier to do it now. See the Visual Editor section at the end of Help:Table.

This would allow people to see the rank order on more cell phones.

Please do not delete the existing row number column though, until you have created a new table in a sandbox or user page. A table with an integrated rank order column. Create your own sandboxes: Special:MyPage/Sandbox, Special:MyPage/Sandbox2, Special:MyPage/Sandbox3. As many as you want.-- Timeshifter (talk) 14:35, 15 April 2019 (UTC)

Table format[edit]

@Timeshifter: Regarding your revert, the table is a technical mess, from empty row headers containg just line breaks, over two separate tables running alongside (most phones won't and don't render this properly), to broken actual row headers ("Incareration Rate per population", "Prison Population [and there is an invisible line break in that title, too]). IMO, the long country header could also be abbreviated to "sovereign entitiy". Also, as I already stated, Wikipedia articles are not meant to explain how Wikipedia works, so "Click the sorting cell (with the Sort both.gif icon) below the incarceration rate header to sort by rate. (Requires JavaScript.)" is completely unnecessary. This what, in this case, Help:Table and Help:Sorting are for. My proposition was to remove the superflous explaining text, and either remove or merge the rank row (which, itself, also seems superflous, because it just goes with the alphabetical order already present in the main table, but then does not sort with it. You say that this has been discussed extensively, but from a quick glimpse over the revisions, that doesn't appear to be the case, and the only similar discussion is one above that asks whether the table could be sorted by rate from the get-go, unrelated to my issue. Regards. Lordtobi () 14:41, 15 April 2019 (UTC)

Please see Help:Sorting and the section called "Auto-ranking or adding a row numbering column (1,2,3) next to a table". The row headers are not broken. There are breaks in them in order to keep the table narrow. See that Help:Sorting section, and the sections that follow it, for more info.
It is common with tables to explain parts of it. For example; List of U.S. states by incarceration and correctional supervision rate.
Sovereign entity is not nearly as clear and understandable as "Country (or dependent territory, subnational area, etc.)". Am I correct in believing that English is not your native language?
List of U.S. states by incarceration and correctional supervision rate is an example of a table that needs a separate row number column. Because there are 3 separate columns that are important enough that people want to be able to see any one of them in rank order. That can't be done with an integrated rank order column. It can only be done with a fixed row number column. -- Timeshifter (talk) 03:54, 16 April 2019 (UTC)

Unsourced claims on the war on drugs as "slavery"[edit]

This articles portrays the war on drug as a "continuation of slavery" while the war on drugs is indeed catastrophical for black people, it being a continuation of slavery is an unsourced and biased claim. As such this should be deleted or a section should be added to reference what some activists claim it is, but should not be cited as facts. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:53, 11 June 2019 (UTC)

This article is a list article. Reasons for various incarceration rates belong in country articles. Look in the categories, and check out the articles:
United States incarceration rate
Comparison of United States incarceration rate with other countries
Category:Penal systems by country
Category:Incarceration rates
-- Timeshifter (talk) 18:46, 11 June 2019 (UTC)

Why aren't the incarceration rates listed from highest to lowest?[edit]

Hi. Why would you list international Incarceration rates of nations alphabetically in a table, if you wanted people to consume them? How can a person follow and sort the list to make sense of it, simply by viewing a list of 200 nations or so in an arbitrary alphabetic sequence? They would have to manually figure out how to do that, on a piece of paper or a device. Is there a way that we can make this long table adjustable by column, as if it were a column in a spreadsheet, and we were applying a sort to re-present the list in a more meaningful way, such as from highest to lowest or the inverse, or another column of merit to sort it? Currently we have to resort to another website's database where it would most likely listed in from the worst to the least. Any ideas? Stevenmitchell (talk) 08:15, 4 August 2019 (UTC)

It is too difficult to maintain the table in highest to lowest order (or the reverse). That order can change with a single country update by any random editor. Plus one gets highest to lowest order (or the reverse) by clicking the rate sorting header.
I just moved the rate sorting instructions down so it is closer to the table and more visible. I also added the word "sort" to the rate column sorting cell. -- Timeshifter (talk) 10:27, 4 August 2019 (UTC)

Row numbers. 3 columns that people may want to see in rank order[edit]

There are 3 columns in this table that people may want to see in ascending or descending order:

  • Incarceration rate.
  • Prison population.
  • Percent of prisoners unsentenced.

And they may also want to see how the countries rank by number.

This can only be done with a row number column. Currently, a fixed or static row number column can not be integrated with a table.

A separate row number column will not align with this table on cell phones.

Please encourage the Wikimedia Foundation and developers to make it a higher priority to have an option for an integrated row number column in tables. If it is integrated in the table, then it will remain aligned with the table in both narrow and wide screens.

See: Phabricator: T42618: jquery.tablesorter: Add support for a "fixed" column of row numbers. -- Timeshifter (talk) 03:32, 18 September 2019 (UTC)

I fixed the phabricator link number in the above post. It is Phabricator: T42618.
Also, see the section below about a much easier and better method. -- Timeshifter (talk) 09:40, 20 November 2019 (UTC)

Much easier and better method for creating static row number column[edit]


Thanks for installing {{Static column begin}} and {{End}}

Basically, this is all that is needed at the top of the table to add the row number column:

{{Static column begin
| rows=223
| header-text=Row
| header-height=140px
| text-align=right
| caption='''Incarceration populations and rates.''' From '''[[World Prison Brief]].'''<ref name=WorldPrisonBrief/>
{|class="wikitable nowrap sortable" border=1 style=text-align:right;
! height=140px | [[Country]] (or [[dependent territory]],<br>[[Subnational administrative division|subnational]] area, etc.)

And this goes at the end of the table:


I added class="wikitable nowrap sortable" to simplify things further.

The nowrap class means the table rows do not ladder as the screen is narrowed. So the rows always align.

I set the header height to 140px so that people can increase the text size all the way to around 150% in their browsers without causing row alignment problems. -- Timeshifter (talk) 08:59, 20 November 2019 (UTC)

Country links[edit]

@Timeshifter: None of the country links work. Those with sections on this page do, Timeshifter. But, that's fine, I'll redo the edit without the section links. Guarapiranga (talk) 23:21, 20 November 2019 (UTC)

@Guarapiranga: I don't see any advantage by using Template:Flagg. And the documentation says that templates like Template:Flaglist are better in some cases. From the Template:Flagg documentation:
Comparison with other templates.
These "specialized" templates predate Flagg, and while most do not have options for custom links and images, they are probably faster because they only do two transclusions without invoking Lua.
-- Timeshifter (talk) 23:27, 20 November 2019 (UTC)

Not necessary to explain basic web browsing and number literacy[edit]

We don't need to explain to readers how to sort a table or what circa means (at least not on this page).

@Timeshifter: Most all of this has been discussed before on the talk page.

Yeah, I see others have pointed that out to you in the past (10 years?? Wow!). I see how dedicated you are to this article, Timeshifter, but I'm afraid you've grown a little too cagey about it. As it stands now, this article is way out of whack against WP:MOS. Guarapiranga (talk) 05:43, 21 November 2019 (UTC)

@Guarapiranga: No it's not. I have around 56,000 edits on Wikimedia projects. Notes are common on table pages. And notes are common in references. -- Timeshifter (talk) 05:50, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
Notes in general? Sure. Notes explaining how to navigate and read tables on the web and what circa means? No. Also, there are plenty of note templates on WP to point directly to the relevant text in the correct style, rather than to a general Notes section. And that's usually done with a superscripted link, not a table column either. You've mentioned your 56,000 edits 2-3 times now, but somehow in all this time figuring out how to put a simple fixed rank column seems to have evaded you. Sometimes it does take thousands of edits to get what you want… when you don't know your way around the code. Guarapiranga (talk) 07:14, 21 November 2019 (UTC)
@Guarapiranga: Apparently almost no one knew about the usefulness of {{Static column begin}} until you expanded the number of rows from 200 to 1000 on Oct 22, 2019. See the history of the template. There was another template, but it was used on only 2 pages (a user page and a draft page): {{Static column begin 300 rows}}. The documentation for both was appalling until I updated it earlier today. Both templates used the same documentation. The 2nd template now redirects to the first template. A good idea of yours.
Most country pages have over 200 rows, and so I am not surprised few people knew of it. Especially since the documentation made it sound like it was much more difficult to use than it is. It is actually very simple to use once one sees adequate instruction about it.
I checked the main Phabricator thread working on this: Phab: T42618. It is titled: jquery.tablesorter: Add support for a "fixed" column of row numbers. It goes back to 2012. There is no mention of the template until I mentioned it Nov 20, 2019.
There was a single line about the template on Help:Sorting until I mentioned it yesterday in more detail in a different section. I will be explaining it in much greater detail there later.
Help:Table currently has nothing about {{Static column begin}}. -- Timeshifter (talk) 03:33, 22 November 2019 (UTC)