Talk:Meerkat Manor: The Story Begins

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Featured article Meerkat Manor: The Story Begins is a featured article; it (or a previous version of it) has been identified as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community. Even so, if you can update or improve it, please do so.
Featured topic star Meerkat Manor: The Story Begins is part of the Meerkat Manor series, a featured topic. This is identified as among the best series of articles produced by the Wikipedia community. If you can update or improve it, please do so.
Main Page trophy This article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on January 18, 2010.
Did You Know Article milestones
Date Process Result
July 4, 2008 Good article nominee Listed
July 12, 2008 Featured topic candidate Promoted
February 21, 2009 Featured article candidate Not promoted
August 25, 2009 Featured article candidate Promoted
Did You Know A fact from this article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "Did you know?" column on July 1, 2008.
Current status: Featured article

B class[edit]

I have reviewed the article and believe it meets the criteria to be assessed as B class. I made a few minor fixes, please look them over and make sure I didn't incorrectly fix something. I would recommend adding an inline citation for "In a "Making of" feature, Hawkins notes that they believe this film to be the first natural history prequel to every be created." just so no issues are raised over it in a future GAN/FAC. Also, I looked in the two sources after "Meerkat Manor: The Story Begins was well-praised for the extraordinary cinematography, stunning South African backdrop, and in-depth coverage of the meerkats that the television series is known for." and didn't see "stunning" used. This may be considered POV, so consider rewording unless you find a source specifically stating this. If so, add quotation marks around the statement. Other than these few minor issues, good job on your work so far, and I'd recommend taking it to GAN if you can't find any more information to add. Happy editing! --Nehrams2020 (talk) 08:03, 3 July 2008 (UTC)

Great, thanks. I'll get those items fixed and double check to make sure I didn't miss any other relevant info to add. :) For stunning, its in the source, but I'd accidentally given two sources the same name so the proper one wasn't showing. I'll add some quote marks, though, to make it clearer. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 08:20, 3 July 2008 (UTC)

GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Meerkat Manor: The Story Begins/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

  • "seventy-five minute film" → "75 minute film"; "thirty-minute" → "30 minute" – there is really no need to spell out numbers higher than 9
  • Link "2007-21-08" in the references.

Gary King (talk) 01:54, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Fixed :) -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 02:13, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

  • Tenses change here: "Genna Terranova disagreed [...] Terranva also praises"
  • "footage."" → "footage".", ""evocative."" → ""evocative".", etc. throughout the article, per WP:PUNC. Essentially, only put the punctuation in the quotes if the quotation is a full sentence and so the punctuation would make sense as part of it.

Gary King (talk) 02:24, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Both fixed (and that link book marked for future reference) -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 02:34, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

This article meets the Good Article criteria and has therefore been passed. Gary King (talk) 02:46, 4 July 2008 (UTC)

Requested photo[edit]

This article doesn't have any free images, and they would be a very good thing. It's clearly difficult to find suitable free images for this article, so I've suggested that an image of one or more of the meerkats which were filmed at the Cotswold Wildlife Park would be relatively easy for someone to find and photograph. I'm not sure why the proposal was undone with the edit summary "why is it necessary?" - this completely misses the point! It is not necessary, but it would certainly add to the article. Warofdreams talk 12:14, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

Random meerkats filmed in the Park would not add to the article. The only part of the film done there was a extremely minor birthing scene. The bulk of the film was shot in the Kuruman River Reserve in South Africa, a location closed to the general public. There fore I have removed the request as it would not add to the article to have any such pictures. It would, to me, be no different from adding a random meerkat picture from the meerkat article. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 16:57, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Are none of the meerkats which was filmed still at the Cotswold Wildlife Park, then? If they are there, then they aren't "random meerkats"; it would be extremely relevant. Clearly, it would be very good to have free image which was relevant to this article. Even though they were only included briefly, they did appear in the film and, as you say, it wouldn't be possible to get photos from the Kuruman River Reserve, so that's why I have come up with a practical suggestion. Warofdreams talk 17:20, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
A single scene from the entire film, a birthing scene, which I highly doubt could be taken by the general public. So no, a free image of a "random" meerkat (random as it, absolutely no way to get one of one that actually was in the film and not of the scene from that location that was filmed) is not a good image to have. It doesn't seem like a "practical suggestion", as first, that indicates there is some problem (there isn't), and second, it introduces a potentially factual error, as the image is really unrelated to the article and the film. Your suggestion is similar to saying, "well, we don't have a non-free of Daniel Baldwin, but we have one of Stephen, so put it in Daniel's article to just to have something". The article does not "require" a free image, and it isn't lacking because of it. If it were felt it were lacking an image, it wouldn't have passed its FAC. None of the other Meerkat Manor articles have free images of non-series/film meerkats just to have them either, instead they have non-free images from the series and making of. Now if you feel some point of the article should be illustrated with a non-free image from the documentary or the like, that I could see being a relevant argument to consider. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 17:29, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Is it impossible to get a photo of a meerkat which was in the film? Why? If we can get a photo of a meerkat which was in the film, then I simply cannot understand why you would oppose including it in the article. If it's just a shot of meerkats in the environment in which some of the movie was filmed, it still could add something to the article - certainly far more than your curious example would have. The idea that anyone has suggested that a free image is a requirement is a complete red herring; the aim is to work collaboratively to improve articles, not to meet a particular requirement and resist attempts to do more. The point about photographing a random birthing scene is also a red herring; I have not suggested it, and it would be far less encyclopaedic to use a photo depicting a similar event but unconnected with the film. Warofdreams talk 17:43, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
How can you get it a photo of a meerkat in the film? They ones that were filmed being birthed are not identified, not by the Park nor the company. Further, the birth happened at least a year ago, maybe three years ago, as they do not say exactly when they went to the park to film that single scene. And no, just having some shots of some meerkats at the park does not add anything to the article. It gives the park and scene undue weight, really, when it was not the main area of filming nor used for major scenes. It was used for a single scene. And yes, you are basically suggesting that somehow it is a requirement by posting the request. To have any relevance to the article, any photo should actually have something to do with the film, but of course you can't get a picture of the actual birth, so the next best thing would be a random birth, which also can't be filmed. Again, I see absolutely no value in such a request or in having such an image. If people just want to see a meerkat, the actual meerkat article has tons of them. Adding one here just to add one, again, does not add to the article at all. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 17:56, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Are you saying that the park does not know which meerkats were filmed? If they do, then it's easy - someone just needs to ask, then take a photo - easy! The relevance of an image showing a location used for a film, looking much as it did at the time? I'd say pretty good, although clearly you're not going to be convinced. Please do not be silly and claim that requesting a photo implies that it is in some way a requirement for an article - surely you do not believe that? There are hundreds of articles with requested photos, and I've never seen this suggested before. Again, please stop adding red herrings - you are the only one talking about adding pictures of any meerkat - that's has never been my suggestion. Warofdreams talk 18:13, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
That is what you suggested by making the request for a photo of a meerkat from the park. It is "any meerkat". The location was a birthing box, which no one in the public would have access too, and no, you will not convince me that a picture from the park where a single scene was shot is somehow relevant unless someone actually has a free image of the actual birth that was filmed. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 18:37, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

Nationality?[edit]

The article says it's an American documentary film, but it is made by Discovery Films (US) and Oxford Scientific Films (UK) and in fact all the crew (cameramen, sound recordists etc), researchers, writers, in-field producers etc are British, parts of it are filmed in the UK, and IMDB says it's a USA/UK production. The Americans just co-funded it and provided the narration. So why is it down as just American here? if anything, it's more a British production than an American one.86.133.246.81 (talk) 17:44, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

It is an American film because that is what the actual producers consider it. It was created for Animal Planet US and produced by it. Yes, it used much of the same staff as the original Meerkat Manor, but who crews it is not what determines its nationality. Rather, from all reliable sources, it was produced for America, not the United Kingdom. Conversely, the actual television series was made for and aired initially on the UK, so it is a UK series. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 17:56, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
OK, thanks for that.86.133.246.81 (talk) 17:59, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Can you please backup your claims?
a) - "who crews it is not what determines its nationality" - who says? Can you site where this rule is stated? Its not-so-much the crew I'm talking about, as the company that actually filmed it, rather than financed it.
b) "from all reliable sources, ..."
who are these reliable sources? - not IMDB?
c)" .. it was produced for America, not the United Kingdom"
"produced for ..", I'm not sure what the tarkget audience has to do with it, bit in any case surely it was produced for a worldwide market. It is available in the UK on Region 2 DVD.
"Conversely, the actual television series was made for and aired initially on the UK, so it is a UK series."
Again I'm not sure what the market has to do with it, but it was shown on around the world and re-narrated with different voice-over artists for different countries, so it was clearly produced for a wide market. as far as I can tell all the companies involving in developing the original TV series were British, that's why its British.
Clearly this was a US/UK co-production as IMDB acknowledge.
If I might make an analogy, if I put the money up to make custom-built Italian sportscar and I'm British, does that make the car British? I think not. 87.252.60.26 (talk) 18:36, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
It is the consensus of Wikipedia and the film project. Production companies frequently use crews from the area filmed rather than ones of their own nationality, and a production company being British-based does not mean all of its films are now British (by that line, all Sony films would then be Japanese as Sony is based in Japan). Films are made for premiere in certain audiences, same as television series. IMDB is not a reliable source, and the film was produced primarily for Animal Planet US per the reliable sources cited in the article, including interviews with the producer and Caroline Dawson herself. And yes, the initial market is the determiner, which is a neutral, verifiable, and accurate way of cataloging films. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 18:43, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

Hi.

You twice reverted my contribution to Meerkat Manor: The Story Begins. The first time appeared to be part of wholesale revert of other vandalism, although looking at the diffs I didn't detect any significant vandalism myself. The second one was clearly in response to my contribution. You posted the following message on the edit summary "(Undid revision 338576375 by 87.252.60.26 (talk) rv; that doesn't make it a British film - considered American by all parties)".

Who are these all parties? It does not apparently include IMDB. The IMDB page at http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1204315/ list the country as USA/UK. You should note that Oxford Scientific Films is a British company. The director Chris Barker is British. The Kalahari Meerkat Project was is a research group from Cambridge University. The write Caroline Hawkins is an executive producer at Oxford Scientific Films. She is British. The Official website is http://www.meerkatmanor.co.uk. The original Meerkat Manor programmes were broadcast on the Animal Planet channel (a British division of the Discovery Channel) and the BBC partly funded it. Now I'll grant you that Animal Planet's parent company financed this particular project, but the filming was done by a British company. You'll surely agree that it is somewhat disingenuous to call this a wholly American project, which the previous wording implied.Your revert message said "... that doesn't make it a British film ....", you'll note that the change I made was not intended to imply that it was an entirely British production. I put USA/UK in the summary box, which is in-line with the country of origin section on IMDB. The article is now protected and so I am unable to make a suitable change to the article, but I would be grateful if you could re-instate my previous contribution. Regards 87.252.60.26 (talk) 18:20, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

See above for part of my explanation. Further, IMDB is not a reliable source. It is a user-edited site and anyone can change anything to say anything. Further, I know who Oxford is, I am the major writer of all of the Meerkat Manor articles. The nationality of the producer, the staff, etc is not what determines a film's nationality, it is its country of origin and release which is American. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 18:32, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
AnmaFinotera - I don't think you present a convincing case. The only authority you seem to be citing is your own, becuase of your history on these articles. Your dismissal of IMDB becaase it contains "user-edited" information is is a red-herring. IMdb list the country of origin as US/UK because the production company were UK while the finacing came from the US. That much is beyond dispute, so IMDBs reliability is not an issue. What are your reliable sources? 87.194.131.188 (talk) 18:45, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
No, it is not a "red herring". IMDB is not a rleiable source, period. This is the overwhelming consensus of Wikipedia. My sources are in the article, which are all that are needed, however if you'd like me to highlight onee - it was release at the Tribeca Film festival as an American film, not UK and not dual.[1] -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 18:47, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
For the benefit of everybody concerned please indicate on this page what your precise sources are for the claim that this is a soley American production, and that this is based-upon the cirteria you claim. Please indicate where the consensus you indicate is laid out. If you do so to everyone's satisfaction there will be nothing to dispute. 87.194.131.188 (talk) 18:52, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
I already did in the post you just responded to. The Tribeca listing is an actual reliable source, and clearly indicates it is a US film. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 19:13, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
I'm not sure why you think that this press release is a reliable source, but you do not address the other issues of where your criteria has been established by consensus. 87.194.131.188 (talk) 19:19, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Oh, you don't believe the Tribeca Film Festival is a reliable source?[2] But somehow IMDB is? -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 19:26, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

To get straight to the point, we don't get to decide the nationaility of this production. We can not create content out of nothing. We follow what the sources say. If reliable sources said this was a Zambian production, that is what the article would say. Beach drifter (talk) 18:49, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

I've yet to discover where the case is made for where these reliable sources make the US-ony claim. 87.194.131.188 (talk) 18:52, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
I thought user submissions to IMDB were vetted by editors before publication? I think the problem of user-submitted garbage was remedied long ago. Anyway, I don't see the harm in finding some way of explaining that it was a joint US/UK production with US release. Is anyone actually disputing that information? --Andy Walsh (talk) 19:11, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
No, they are not, and the film is a US film for the purposes of the lead and the infobox and per the makers themselves as noted above. The companies involved are already properly noted. -- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 19:13, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Would we consider the British Film Institute a reliable source? - http://ftvdb.bfi.org.uk/sift/title/840098 87.194.131.188 (talk) 19:15, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
It doesn't say the film's nationality is X or Y, only the company's of production, which are not the same thing. It's nationality is the county of release.-- AnmaFinotera (talk · contribs) 19:18, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
It was premiered in the UK at the Curzon Cinema in London a few days after the release at the Tribeca Film festival - http://www.kalahari-meerkats.com/index.php?id=mm_movie 87.194.131.188 (talk) 19:33, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
You stated "all the parties ..." and so far can only point to a press release from a film festival, which hardly counts as "all" the parties. You've discounted the BFI link because you claim that the film's nationality is nothing to do with who produced it but where the film was released and you've failed to produce anything which backs up your claim that your position is part of an existing Wikipedia consensus. It looks like the consensus on this page is now to go with the state which you reverted from. 87.194.131.188 (talk) 19:47, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

I added "American" to the lead sentence and in retrospect, I labeled it wrongly. I don't think that the film itself needs to establish a clear nationality... if the nationality is disputable, then we should not worry that much about it. We could identify the nationality of the companies involved rather than trying to add one label to the film. Erik (talk) 19:32, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

Precisely. 87.194.131.188 (talk) 19:34, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
I think that's a reasonable course of action. --Andy Walsh (talk) 19:35, 18 January 2010 (UTC)

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