From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Spirituality (Rated C-class, Low-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Spirituality, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of spirituality-related subjects on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
C-Class article C  This article has been rated as C-Class on the project's quality scale.
Checklist icon
 Low  This article has been rated as Low-importance on the project's importance scale.
WikiProject Skepticism  
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Skepticism, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of science, pseudoscience, pseudohistory and skepticism related articles on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
 ???  This article has not yet received a rating on the project's quality scale.
 ???  This article has not yet received a rating on the project's importance scale.

Here's an idea[edit]

Why not make an article ABOUT books ABOUT otherkin. Just like there's an article about videogames about WWII. It doesn't endorse their viewpoint, it just mentions that they exist and summarizes what they claim. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:27, 11 March 2008 (UTC)

Considering that no other spiritual belief, however bizarre, is treated in a similar manner, singling out otherkin for such treatment would be POV, as it would carry the implication that their beliefs are so bizarre they simply cannot be discussed in a primary article and must only be discussed at a step removed from the subject. (talk) —Preceding comment was added at 19:23, 6 April 2008 (UTC)

With respect to the WP:RS issue:[edit]

It should be noted that WP:RSE includes the following instructions (bolded for emphasis):

"Articles related to popular culture and fiction must be backed up by reliable sources like all other articles. However, due to the subject matter, many may not be discussed in the same academic contexts as science, law, philosophy and so on; it is common that plot analysis and criticism, for instance, may only be found in what would otherwise be considered unreliable sources. Personal websites, wikis, and posts on bulletin boards, Usenet and blogs should still not be used as secondary sources. When a substantial body of material is available the best material available is acceptable, especially when comments on its reliability are included."

I believe otherkin and similar internet-based subcultures would justifiably fall under the heading of popular culture.

I believe this speaks directly to the use of A Field Guide to Otherkin by Lupa as a source, as well as other texts of a similar nature that have been mentioned like Not in Kansas Anymore by Christine Wicker, and even the more purely metaphysical text Psychic Self Defense by Dion Fortune which mentions nonhuman souls in human bodies in far less than flattering terms. (talk) 19:32, 6 April 2008 (UTC)

I hate to bring up the notability thing again, but are Otherkin even notable? The longer I look at it, the less convinced I am. If there is a complete dearth of real material on them, how notable they are is somewhat questionable. Anonymous became notable when it pulled 7000 people onto the streets, but it wasn't notable before then. Otherkin have never done anything which really resulted in them getting piles of articles, hence the incredibly short, stubbish article. I don't think including material from a lot of these sources is possible without giving them undue weight, which is a major issue which also cannot be ignored. Titanium Dragon (talk) 06:33, 7 April 2008 (UTC)
I believe the issue of the notability of otherkin was settled previously in the original AfD attempts, where it was decided to keep the article and that Otherkin were notable enough for an article. There is also far from a dearth of real material on the subject. Otherkin are mentioned in:
  1. The Village Voice article "Elven Like Me"
  2. Veil's Edge
  3. Field Guide to Otherkin
  4. Not In Kansas Anymore
  5. Psychic Self Defense
  6. Ascension Magick by Christopher Penczak
  7. The Psychic Vampire Codex by Michelle Belanger
  8. The Vampire Ritual Book by Michelle Belanger
  9. Psychic Dreamwalking by Michelle Belanger
  10. Real Energy by Phaedra and Isaac Bonewits
  11. Handfasting & Wedding Rituals by Raven Kaldera and Tannin Schwartzstein
  12. Cults and New Religious Movements by Lorne L. Dawson
  13. Religion Online by Lorne L. Dawson and Douglas E. Cowan
  14. The Harper-Collins fiction book Colors Insulting to Nature by Cintra Wilson
  15. The BBC Radio Play Looking For Angels: Otherkin by Laura Wade
  16. The open-access peer-reviewed online literary magazine "The Harrow
  17. The College of Wooster course currently referenced in the article
  18. An anthropology course at Hofstra University.
  19. The re-enchantment of the West by Christopher Hugh Partridge
That's nineteen sources just with few quick searches using google. There is no dearth of source material here.
Considering that these are the best sources speaking on the subject of otherkin, how is using them giving them "undue weight"? Are you concerned that there is another viewpoint on the subject of otherkin which is not being adequately represented by these sources? Referring to them does not mean the article must endorse their position; but it cannot be denied that these are the best sources available on the subject. If you have sources representing an alternative viewpoint, what would those be? (talk) 04:02, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

a flurry of soundbites, most of them mentions-in-passing, does not make for notability. I do not suggest deletion, but unless notability is established, this could become a section redirect to a list entry in list of subcultures or similar. I am sorry, but this "article" is pretty much a dictdef, plus a mention that "otherkin" evolved out of an "elven online community" (without explaining what that was) in the 1990s. This could become a larger article, including discussion of said "elven" community, Therianthropy (subculture) and similar things. The stub as it stands utterly fails to make clear why we even have it. dab (𒁳) 21:27, 9 April 2008 (UTC)

ok, I admit there is at least one dedicated monograph, the Field Guide to Otherkin (2007, ISBN 190571307X). Now that's at least something. "Megalithica Books" is Immanion Press, "an independent publishing company based in the heart of the UK. Specialising in Fantasy Fiction and Esoteric Non-Fiction." This may go to save the standalone article, but we should still envisage reasonable merge scenarios. dab (𒁳) 21:34, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
Several of the texts represent more than soundbites. Elven Like Me in the Village Voice is an entire article on the subject. Otherkin are dealt with as full chapters in Veils Edge and Not in Kansas Anymore, in addition to Field Guide to Otherkin being entirely about Otherkin. Psychic Self Defense, while not using the term otherkin, deals with the concept of nonhuman spirits incarnating in human bodies at some length. The others deal more briefly with the term, but seem to think little elaboration is required, thus speaking to the concept approaching general knowledge in pagan circles. The fiction book, literary magazine, and BBC radio play are examples of the term penetrating into pop culture outside of the pagan community and into the mainstream. All of which speaks to the subject of notability. The current length of the article, and the lack of information contained within it, is largely the result of few non-print sources being accepted as reliable enough. Even otherkin websites which have a long history of existence, with multiple print sources specifically referring to them, such as and have been deemed unreliable sources of information on what otherkin actually believe; despite the entire otherkin community being an internet subculture. Even the Otherkin FAQ, specifically prepared by the otherkin community as a guide to itself, has been deemed unreferenceable. Vashti maintains a copy of an older version of this article that she worked on heavily; almost all of the sources from it have been deemed unreliable in the past by certain editors who previously decided to police this article. The same editors, it should be noted, who repeatedly tried to link the beliefs of otherkin with clinical lycanthropy. I would suggest it would be appropriate to reevaluate some of those sources in conjunction with the print material on the subject, particularly given that WP:RSE paragraph quoted in my original comment. (talk) 23:48, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
Also, as to your previous merge suggestion, as I stated merging Otherkin into the Therianthropy article would be somewhat akin to merging an article on America into an article on New Jersey. Therianthropes represent one subcategory of the group referred to as otherkin, as do vampires, elves, dragons, etc. Therianthropy could conceivably be merged into the otherkin article, however there's a problem with that too... while there is a good bit of overlap between the communities, and while members of the otherkin community consider therians to be a subcategory of themselves, the online therian community exists as a largely autonomous entity, and those members who do not also consider themselves otherkin would protest being included under the term. (Ditto for the vampire subculture.) The best way to really handle the articles is with the understanding that the subcultures consider themselves seperate, much like one would not merge articles on neopagans into an article on Asatru. Actually that may be the best analogy... therian is to otherkin as asatru is to neopagan. While some asatru and all neopagans consider asatru to be neopagan, there are also asatru who wish to distance themselves from neopagans and use the term heathen for themselves. Similarly, while some therians and all otherkin consider therians to be otherkin, there are also therians who wish to distance themselves from otherkin, and they stand as a seperate community and subculture socially. (talk) 00:08, 10 April 2008 (UTC)


I've updated the article to refer to more sources and hopefully give a clearer idea of the notability of the subject in the article itself. Any comments/critiques/questions/concerns? Does this sufficiently address concerns that otherkin do not meet wikipedias notability requirements?

As a courtesy, I'd appreciate it if we could discuss the notability issue here further if it remains a concern before the notability tag is readded to the article, and attempt to build some consensus on exactly what would be necessary to establish notability if the present material is deemed insufficient by any editors. (talk) 02:11, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Also, I'm not sure I did the references correctly... does anyone know the correct way to cite the same source multiple times in the article text, without it appearing multiple times in the references listing? I was a bit confused by that. (talk) 02:20, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

Never mind, figured out the references thing and fixed it. (talk) 02:58, 10 April 2008 (UTC)

A minor correction on the "References in Popular Culture"--Otherkin were mentioned in Taylor Ellwood's "Inner Alchemy: Energy Work and the Magic of the Body", not "Multi-Media Magic". —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:28, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Actually they were mentioned in both. If you click the "Multi-Media Magic" link in the article it goes to's full-text preview of Multi-Media Magic, specifically to a search for the term otherkin within the book. The term otherkin appears twice on page 34 of Multi-Media Magic, once in the body of the text and once in a footnote. You are, however, correct that the references to them in Inner Alchemy were overlooked. Sorry about that, I should have known better since I ordered that book at the same time as I ordered my copy of Field Guide. Inner Alchemy will be added to the list right away. Thank you. Jarandhel (talk) 21:14, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Opening Paragraph Rewrite[edit]

I think the opening paragraph needs to be re-written. It does not seem to hit NPOV, nor does the "While "Otherkin" are physically human, ethereal/astral/otherwise nonphysical bodies are a different story. The reason I say this is because Otherkins are in fact humans who inherit non-human souls." sound proper for an encyclopedia entry. KiTA (talk) 16:21, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

Actually, upon re-reading the article, I think the entire thing needs to be re-written. It almost looks like it was copied from an Otherkin website, and repeatedly mentions "this author" and "I", which is inappropriate. KiTA (talk) 16:26, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
The article was changed by an IP account. Most of the added content was copy/paste garbage from personal websites. I've restored the version that meets all of wikipedia's policy requirements. NeoFreak (talk) 22:26, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for fixing the vandalism, NeoFreak. I haven't been checking this article much lately, I thought that people were finally satisfied with it and both sides were leaving it pretty much alone. Jarandhel (talk) 14:54, 25 June 2008 (UTC)

Otherkin and Furry Lifestylers[edit]

Furry fandom#Furry lifestylers

I was wondering if anyone here could share any knowledge on the subject for improving either article. Current entry on the furry fandom article states that furry lifestylers and were/therian/otherkin share similar beliefs with them ("a person with an important emotional/spiritual connection with an animal or animals, real, fictional or symbolic", slightly WP:OR) - is this correct? Does it deserve any more mention? Any other details? --Draco 2k (talk) 11:17, 11 August 2008 (UTC)

Otherkin is essentially a religious/spiritual belief. Some furry lifestylers, those who feel that they are spiritually an animal of a certain type or similar, are otherkin. Others are not, and have other New Age type beliefs in their relationship with an animal, or simply really, really like a certain type of animal. Fundamentally, there is some overlap between the otherkin and furry communities, but being one doesn't necessarily make you a member of the other group, though in my experience there are a lot of furry otherkin, and some of the more extreme furries are otherkin. Not all of them are, though. Titanium Dragon (talk) 05:40, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
I'm an example of this "extreme furry", and simply put there is a very large swath of all kinds of animals calling themselves furry ranging from humans to non-humans. From my experience, furry is mostly composed of humans now days, while were/therian/otherkin are more often composed of non-humans. Of course determining real percentages is pretty tough so I won't bother to even guess. I think the lifestyler term used to be used more for non-humans, but now I've seen it used now days more often than not to describe humans who "really" admire non-humans to the point where it effects their lives somehow. Pretty broad, I know, but all of it is, and it seems to become broader all the time. Swiftpaw (talk) 15:03, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

"Concepts" section.[edit]

The summary in particular is an embarassment, even just grammatically. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:19, 15 April 2009 (UTC)

Claim agaisnt physical transformation, There is no God[edit]

if it's common knowledge enough to not need to be cited, don't write it, the way it is written seems a bit offensive, "contrary to what they believe, there is no God", is there such a comment on the article about God? --TiagoTiago (talk) 20:27, 13 January 2010 (UTC)

  • Isn't that called "Wikipedia?" Besides, if there's no RS, it probably shouldn't even be in the article. Titanium Dragon (talk) 01:11, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

This article still is very short and poor[edit]

The symbol on it is pretty much just random, the article is incredibly short and has no hope at all of being expanded... is it time to nominate this for deletion again? Titanium Dragon (talk) 01:12, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

I think one of the reasons it is poor and short is that for the most part the term "otherkin" is relatively new. Considering that and the general dismissal most people have of any new form of religion as a cult or sham, not many people have written works on it. On another note, I have seen works on this belief in other places on the net, but mostly it was the words of those in the belief. I would add their information to the article, but I am certain that it will be deleted since there is no book source for the information but just a link to it. In about 20 years or so, this religion might have enough information actually published to make a substantial article on Wikipedia. Until then it will always be small and poor due to the fact that sticklers for book sources proceed to disclaim, argue against, and generally do their best to tear down any online sources of those actually in the belief system. CelticsFinest (talk) 00:26, 21 April 2010 (UTC)

According to the article, the term "otherkin" is almost two decades old. Compare this to other fringe belief systems that have taken much less time to gain notoriety across the world. Seems to me that the reason that the otherkin community has not received more academic or media attention is that it's obvious to educated individuals that it's make-believe. Not even on the level that you might call other religions make-believe, really, because there are otherkin who purport to be descended from creatures that were made up by humans for entertainment purposes (hey seriously I was a Pokemon in my past life but I was half fox demon too; I like it because it's Japanese). I can post a manifesto to usenet about how my soul is a toaster oven and probably get a handful of weirdos to agree that theirs are too. If nobody cares, it's not because they're "sticklers for book sources", it's because they're not idiots. Hope this helps. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:00, 4 September 2010 (UTC)

For like a year the article said one of the common kintypes as "boytaur". It made me laugh. Boytaur is just some porn photoshop thing and not a kintype so it was funny. I remember when the article used to be really long, sigh oh how the articles degrade over time. Are you ready for IPv6? (talk) 06:30, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

Possible External Links[edit]

What would be the consensus on including an external link to The Otherkin Timeline and/or the Directory of Otherkin Writings and Other Works? Both projects are by the same author, and are extensively sourced. Either of them may help provide a broader perspective on the Otherkin community, and I believe it would fall under the third heading for sites that can normally be linked according to the WP:External Links policy:

"Sites that contain neutral and accurate material that is relevant to an encyclopedic understanding of the subject and cannot be integrated into the Wikipedia article due to copyright issues,[2] amount of detail (such as professional athlete statistics, movie or television credits, interview transcripts, or online textbooks), or other reasons."

So, what do people think? Any objections/concerns? --Jarandhel (talk) 03:35, 7 December 2011 (UTC)

I personally think the timeline would be fine. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 13:44, 8 December 2011 (UTC)
Cool. :) Any thoughts on the Directory of Writings, or do you think including them both would be overkill or too biased towards one author? --Jarandhel (talk) 20:23, 9 December 2011 (UTC)
It's way too biased to be included here, plus neither the compiler nor the persons linked to are any kind of recognized authorities (outside of their own communities). We don't link to/advertise random people that may have something to say on the topic. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 05:58, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Considering they are both written by the same person, I'm not clear on how that would apply to one of them and not the other. --Jarandhel (talk) 07:38, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Anyway, we at least seem to agree on adding the Timeline as an external link, so I'll do that. --Jarandhel (talk) 08:27, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

"See also"[edit]

As shown by this, there has been some debate over what is or is not appropriate in this article's "See also" section. It has been asked that I revert a reversion I made, but before I do anything I'm interested in coming to some sort of consensus, with other editors as well. Any thoughts? Roaring Pegasus.jpgEquivamp(talk) 19:50, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

It should stay, it's a connected concept. People might not even know they were actually looking for clinical lycanthropy when they were looking up otherkin. Jarandhel should realize that an encyclopedia article should be neutral and helpful (by suggesting alternatives) and not sacrifice helpfulness for the sake of painting a certain desired picture of otherkin. In any case, I don't really see what the problem is, it's not like CL is some sort of a horrible and offensive concept. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 07:16, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
I'd have to agree. It's not as if we're making a psychological diagnosis; they're related concepts, and that's what a see-also section is about. Roaring Pegasus.jpgEquivamp(talk) 13:49, 15 December 2011 (UTC)
In what respect are they "connected concepts"? How is it at all likely that someone looking up Otherkin is "actually looking" for clinical lycanthropy?
In fact, this link was added (after having not been part of the article since 2008) by Dream Guy who has previously made his stance on this subject quite well known: "We've been through this... The clinical lycanthropy article itself is a source for the claim. It's not so much that anyone who identifies as otherkin is has clinical lycanthropy, but that the beliefs they hold overlap the symptoms but type if not severity. The question of severity is what is needed for an individual diagnosis, but then the idea that we can't mention any possible connection without a confirmed diagnosis goes against the way the profession works... only individuals can be diagnosed, not whole groups."
This is the reason he has pushed for its inclusion. Because he feels that otherkin suffer from clinical lycanthropy. He has said this again and again. "On the topic being discussed, normal otherkin beliefs do have features of clinical lycanthropy. The only separations between the two concepts is severity and that an individual diagnoses is necessary." "The only difference here is that otherkin have delusions of either being a wild animal or a mythical animal of some sort."
This is his stated position on why he is including it. That IS making a diagnosis. The entire reason for including it has been to suggest that Otherkin are suffering from a psychological disorder. That's why he readdded it after I removed a link to "Fantasy Prone Personality", another psychological disorder that people are trying to connect to otherkin without WP:RS.
Please, let's not play games and pretend that there is no agenda in including this see-also. Especially on an article that previously had a full section on clinical lycanthropy which was removed due to lack of reliable sources for any of it (the only sources cited were ones to definitions of CL, which did not mention otherkin in any respect.) Wikipedia:Guide_to_layout#See_also_section is clearly not carte blanche to insert either POV or WP:SYN into an article. --Jarandhel (talk) 04:14, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Also, Equivamp, don't you have just a wee bit of a WP:COI given that you are one of the two co-caretakers for Encyclopedia Dramatica's "Furfaggotry Portal" which lists as a Furry Community and describes it as "a forum where the most severely mentally ill basement-dwellers congregate to discuss the trials of being a mythical creature in a human body."? I'm afraid I can't link as the site is on Wikipedia's blacklist. --Jarandhel (talk) 04:41, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
I've said it before and I'll said it again: The views portrayed on Encyclopedia Dramatica are those of the site alone, and do not reflect my own personal views. I do not think that Otherkin/Therians often suffer from CL. I'm a therian myself. (Interestingly enough, I don't think Clinical Lycanthropy is even mentioned on any Otherkin-related article.) In addition to any edits I've made to related articles on ED, I've made at least ttwice as many NPOV edits to related articles both here and on WikiFur. Equivamp(talk) 13:36, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
Fair enough. Sorry, I just had to ask given that you are advocating adding a see also to a mental illness here, when a page that falls under your caretaking specifically refers to otherkin as "the most severely mentally ill basement-dwellers". You are correct that Clinical Lycanthropy itself is not specifically mentioned on any of the otherkin articles at ED. --Jarandhel (talk) 17:55, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Guide_to_layout#See_also_section: "Whether a link belongs in the "See also" section is ultimately a matter of editorial judgment and common sense. The links in the See Also section should be relevant, should reflect the links that would be present in a comprehensive article on the topic, /--/ The links in the See Also section do not have to be directly related to the topic of the article, because one purpose of the See Also links is to enable readers to explore topics that are only peripherally relevant." — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 14:11, 15 December 2011 (UTC)

To let you both know, I have started a discussion of this issue on the Neutrality Noticeboard, per the advice of the admin Qwyrixan on my talk page. The Noticeboard discussion is here. --Jarandhel (talk) 06:18, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

It's a See also section - all related concepts should be there. Trying to have it removed seems to be done sole to promote a POV, in violation of WP"NPOV and WP:FRINGE rules. Wikipedia articles are not supposed to be advocacy pages for belief systems, they are supposed to cover notable topics from the accepted mainstream views. A tiny link to a related concept is completely inoffensive. Anyone who finds it so offensive that it should be censored doesn't get the concept of See also links or Wikipedia in general. If anything, this article needs a more mainstream view of Otherkin. Just because advocates of a belief system give it a brand new name and the mainstream sources don't typically refer to it by that name doesn't mean that what mainstream scholars have to say about people who think they aren't human should be censored here. This article badly needs more info on clinical lycanthropy in general. DreamGuy (talk) 18:00, 26 December 2011 (UTC)

Is realted to the idea of a feeling of otherness, its as relevatn as furrydome and Were's. "Some claim to be able to shapeshift mentally or astrally", thats clinical Lyncathropy.Slatersteven (talk) 18:18, 26 December 2011 (UTC)

Opinions of Outside Viewers & World's Most Bizarre Subculture[edit]

Regarding the section "Outside viewers may have varying opinions about people who identify as Otherkin, ranging from considering them animal-human relationship pioneers, to psychologically dysfunctional.[6]". That's not actually what the source says. It says "Whether people in any of these groups should be considered deeply mystical, fascinating thinkers, animal-human relationship pioneers, psychologically dysfunctional, or something else entirely, is up to the reader to decide." It makes no positive claims about what the reactions of outside groups have been.

Similarly, regarding "Otherkin have been called the world's most bizarre subculture", that's not what the source cited actually says. It says "By definition subcutures are different, but some are more different from others, sometimes bizarrely so. Below are eight of the world's most bizarre subcultures." It then goes on to list 8 sucultures. Otherkin is #1 on the list. Norwegian Death Metal is #2. Lolitas are #7. There is nothing in the text to indicate that these are listed in order from most bizarre to least bizarre. --Jarandhel (talk) 05:04, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

(1) I had to write it in some way without copypasting the exact sentence. If you can tweak the phrasing to what you think is more accurate, feel free to do so.
(2) Edited. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 12:25, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
Thank you for editing the second one. I think that's more accurate now. As for the first, I'm not sure there's a way to simply tweak it to be more accurate. The source is literally saying that readers can take it any way they like, and suggests a range of possibilities. It says nothing about what other people actually believe about otherkin. I think you'd have to find a different source entirely, that actually reports outside perspectives on otherkin, if you want to include a statement along those lines. --Jarandhel (talk) 12:40, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
So you just want it completely removed? I'm sure you're personally very aware of what the general audience thinks of otherkin; if this article is going to be expanded then it'll definitely include a few critical words, you can't stop that from happening just because some people would be personally offended. People do consider otherkin psychologically dysfunctional, and that's just the polite way of putting it, and you and I both know that, and the author of the book referenced knows it too.
So his phrasing isn't clear enough and you object to that book being used as a reference for that statement, correct? — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 14:02, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
I am very aware of what the general audience thinks of otherkin. I have no objection to criticism of otherkin, or descriptions of negative reactions towards otherkin, being included in the article for balance. I've added them myself in the past: diff though the reference was later edited and utimately removed: diff.
My concern is purely that this specific source does not say what you have cited it as saying. It does not report what anyone's views of otherkin are, it offers a few possible ways to view them and says it is up to the reader to decide which if any fit. That's not unclear phrasing, it's a categorically different type of statement. --Jarandhel (talk) 14:34, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

Middle English[edit]

Regarding the section ""Otherkin" as an adjective was defined in Middle English Dictionary (1981) as "a different or an additional kind of, other kinds of".[13]" Is there any reason to think that Otherkin, as used in the context of this article and the modern subculture of that name, has any etymological association whatsoever with Otherkin as it was used in Middle English? --Jarandhel (talk) 06:25, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

Is this really an issue? — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 12:12, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
Well, yes, it is an issue. If the terms aren't actually related then the inclusion of that paragraph in the article is a complete non sequitur. And a misleading one, as it would lead readers to think that was the origin of the term, when it was in fact coined as "otherkind" on April 18, 1990 and subsequently shortened to otherkin. (Please see the Otherkin Timeline linked from the article for documentation of this.) --Jarandhel (talk) 12:36, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
Do you suggest the bit should be edited or removed?
I think that it's relevant either way, whether the word was directly taken from the dictionary or not (I'm not saying that it was and I doubt that it was). For this particular statement, the Timeline document is not sufficiently reliable to authoritatively say that there's no connection at all and that the Middle English word shouldn't even be mentioned.
The article doesn't state a connection, just says that the word was a Middle English word, because it was, and it's very relevant given the original roots and inspiration of the subculture. We can clarify where the "actual" word came from, and I personally think the Timeline document is okay to use as a reference for that, but the part about the word existing earlier (and being documented in a dictionary that has its own Wikipedia article) should definitely stay. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 13:32, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
I think it should be removed, personally. The article is about the otherkin subculture, not about every historic usage of the word otherkin. And I don't see what the roots (usenet and mailing lists) and "inspiration" (highly debatable) of the subculture have to do with obscure Middle English terms. Including it implies a connection between the Middle English word and the community that just isn't there. And frankly, establishing that there is any such connection would likely constitute original research. --Jarandhel (talk) 13:53, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
Actually the article is simply about "otherkin", and the Middle English definition is similar to the modern definition — it's not a wholly different concept that should be disambiguated on a different page. By roots and inspiration I meant fantasy fiction and mythology and such things, very relevant to old English. Again, we can clearly state that there's no established connection, but the fact that word existed and what it's definition was is very mentionworthy. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 14:13, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
No, the article's title is simply "otherkin". That does not mean the article itself is simply about the word otherkin. Remember, WP:NOTDIC. Specifically, encyclopedia articles are about "a person, or a people, a concept, a place, an event, a thing etc. that their title can denote. The article octopus is about the animal: its physiology, its use as food, its scientific classification, and so forth." whereas dictionary articles are about "the actual words or idioms in their title and all the things it can denote. The entry octopus is about the word "octopus": its part of speech, its pluralizations, its usage, its etymology, its translations into other languages, and so forth." --Jarandhel (talk) 14:39, 24 December 2011 (UTC)


At this point, most of the article text appears in the lede. I think that makes it a little awkward to read, kind of top-heavy. Is there any way we could refactor it with a shorter lead and most of the rest as part of the main body of the article after the table of contents? I don't have specific proposals for such a refactoring at the moment or I'd do it myself, but it just looks wrong this way. --Jarandhel (talk) 12:48, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

It'd need just a bit more content to justify summarizing it for the lead and elaborating in the body of the article. Though when it's expanded it'd make sense to make a first section about the description or the nature of the whole concept, the next section about the history, and the one after that about criticism, with a subsection about internal conflicts (within otherkin and with other but similar subcultures – I'm fairly sure there actually exists published material to write this on, as I found earlier when searching). — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 13:09, 24 December 2011 (UTC)

“while otherkin identify as anything other than animals that have been proven to live on Earth”[edit]

Have dragons and fairy’s been proven to live on Earth? This needs rewording so as not to inply this is a fact, but only a claim.Slatersteven (talk) 18:40, 26 December 2011 (UTC)

What part of "anything other than" confuses you? Fairies and dragons and aliens haven't been proven to live on Earth, that's exactly the point. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 18:44, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
Sorry, once removed from the rest of the sentence it reads slightly differently and it more clear. I read it as saying that unlike therians they believe they are real creatures. It’s a rather tortured sentence, why not just say "while otherkin identify as other mythical creatures"?Slatersteven (talk) 18:53, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
Because aliens, toasters, and cartoon characters aren't mythical creatures. There's no other way to group these things than "everything else but real animals". — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 20:04, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
And toasters and cartoon characters are not animals. So the whole sentance at this time in nonsense, as such it should be removed untill better wording can be found. Perhaps "while otherkin identify as other non-existant creatures" (after all outside of SF toasters are not living creatures).Slatersteven (talk) 21:00, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
We don't remove sentences because one person with an evidently poor grasp of English thinks they should be phrased a little better. (And to say "other non-existent creatures" makes even less sense.) — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 21:04, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
OK how about "while otherkin identify as non-existent creatures" (after all the toaster must be a living creature of a kind to have a soul)? The source for this says “for Otherkin the tie is often to a mythical creature such as a dragon or a gryphon”, so in fact the sentence is synthesis, I will edit to make it match the source.Slatersteven (talk) 21:09, 26 December 2011 (UTC)

Traits Section[edit]

I'm not entirely comfortable with the sentence: "Some otherkin (such as elves) claim they are allergic to Iron (and other examples of modern technology), whilst other Otherkin (such as dragons) claim that having no allergies is a sign of being an Otherkin."

It's the "such as elves" and "such as dragons" parts that bother me, specifically. That phrasing seems highly reflective of an otherkin POV (non-otherkin would not consider these individuals either elves or dragons), though I don't know of a better one that isn't far more cumbersome. I'm also mindful of the Paranormal RfA's finding that "Psychic" or "clairvoyant" and similar terms are cultural artifacts, not people or things which necessarily exist. A psychic may not have psychic abilities, nor does use of the term imply that such abilities exist. link It seems likely to me that similar reasoning would apply in this context, but that phrasing still bothers me. Perhaps because one is a mainstream cultural artifact and one is a cultural artifact of a much smaller group. --Jarandhel (talk) 15:27, 4 January 2012 (UTC)

Replace with elfkin/elvenkin and dragonkin? — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 18:07, 4 January 2012 (UTC)
Oooh, good call! --Jarandhel (talk) 02:12, 5 January 2012 (UTC)

Recent publication[edit]

For those interested out there, it'd be worth looking into this article and adding information from it: The abstract is a poor description of the article; it's actually quite decent an exploration. Librarywild (talk) 08:51, 5 April 2012 (UTC)

Bizarre subculture[edit]

The reference to 'one of the world's most bizarre subcultures' at the end of the article resolves to a marketing textbook with no page reference. Is this good enough? Should this be removed as unreferenced? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:31, 8 October 2012 (UTC)

It's an opinion at the very least, and one that violates NPOV. Whether the source is valid or not, it shouldn't be there as is. --Tathar (talk) 21:30, 16 December 2012 (UTC)
It's in the Reaction section and phrased as "... has been called...", I believe that's neutral enough. The book was published by Taylor & Francis. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 21:34, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

About the furry fandom navbox[edit]

I recently requested that the furry fandom navbox include this article and one other, both of which have substantial relationships to the Furry fandom article and furries in general. Since a lot of furries identify as their anthropomorphic animal forms (per the Gerbasi survey and article, Furries from A to Z) and are therefore similar to otherkin in the same way that therians are, the relationship between these groups is hard to dispute. However, I noticed that User:Jeraphine Gryphon removed the navbox template, claiming that otherkin had nothing to do with the navbox. I'd like to discuss the reversion, because I don't agree that reverting it was best for the article. --Tathar (talk) 21:23, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

Sorry, my explanation went here: Talk:Species_dysphoria#Furry_fandom_navbox.3F. — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 21:27, 16 December 2012 (UTC)
Thanks for linking that. Perhaps the issue would be better resolved by addressing the other links instead? Even if otherkin and species dysphoria don't have a strong relationship to several of the links in the navbox, they're in a different section of the navbox anyway, they have a relationship to some other articles within that section despite its miscellaneous nature, they also have a relationship to a few other articles in the navbox, and they have a relationship to the article that the navbox is centrally focused on. Plus, there's the alternative of making the navbox collapsed by default. I remember from WP:NAVBOX that navbox links should be bidirectional; that is, if an article is linked to in a navbox, that article should also transclude the navbox. I'm going to go through WP:NAVBOX to see how well the navbox is following the guidelines though, since I can see other links in the navbox that are only tangentially related, such as Parahuman. --Tathar (talk) 22:00, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

Also, it just occurred to me that there's no category linking this article to the Furry fandom article, and categories tend to have looser guidelines regarding article relationships. My only question is, should the otherkin category be added as a subcategory of the furry category, the other way around, or should they both be part of some other category? --Tathar (talk) 22:00, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

WikiProject Skepticism?[edit]

"WikiProject Skepticism is a WikiProject dedicated to creating, improving, and monitoring articles which make claims related to science and philosophy." Does this article make such claims? I'm not so sure this article fits within the WikiProject it was recently added to. --Tathar (talk) 11:51, 23 June 2013 (UTC)

I think that the article may have been mistakenly added to the WikiProject due to an editor's mistaken belief that the WikiProject covers all articles about topics that people may be skeptical about, rather than the stated purpose of the WikiProject. I'd like to hear back from Dimadick about his reason for making the edit. --Tathar (talk) 12:30, 23 June 2013 (UTC)

I noticed their claims about health problems from coming in contact with iron. Dimadick (talk) 09:16, 24 June 2013 (UTC)

(Full disclosure: I identify as dragonkin. I do not make any relevant claims other than that I identify primarily as a dragon.) The article indicates that only some otherkin make that claim, and that there is disagreement whether such an allergy would have anything to do with an otherkin identity. Is that enough to place the entire group within the WikiProject? --Tathar (talk) 00:22, 25 June 2013 (UTC)
By comparison, most articles on the New Age movement have been specifically included, even though not all proponents make wild claims. As with all Wikiprojects, the purpose is "To improve and clean up those articles which need help.", not to write polemics against the subject matter.Dimadick (talk) 07:23, 25 June 2013 (UTC)
Fair enough. I was just concerned that the article's inclusion would result in those unfamiliar with the subject misunderstanding what claims are and aren't being made, and then editing the article based on their misconceptions and unintentionally reducing the article's overall quality. If that's not going to be an issue, then I'll take back my concerns about the article's inclusion. I still have concerns about the article's categorization in the WikiProject's list of topics however, since its current categorization requires the article to be about a subject that is religious in nature (nevermind the other issues with calling something a cult) and the article's subject simply isn't of a religious nature. At most, it is of a spiritual nature among those who identify as non-human on a spiritual level, but that basically amounts to "I have an X soul" or some similar identity claim. (Contrast this with the Kayan people (Burma) and the non-human ancestry claims that form the basis of their religion.) --Tathar (talk) 16:46, 25 June 2013 (UTC)
Well, unsourced contributions and biased misconceptions would violate the NPOV policy and have to be removed anyway. As for the list of articles of this WikiProject, until a recent merger it focused on pseudoscience. The merger widened its scope to various typical subjects for skeptic publications, such as the paranormal and alternative medicine. Religious content is included but is not the sole focuse. Out of curiosity, has this subculture been influenced by traditional narratives of wolf-ancestors like Asena? Dimadick (talk) 07:07, 26 June 2013 (UTC)
Actually, such an influence is highly unlikely. Few, if any, otherkin make claims to non-human ancestry, and any such claims would be met with skepticism from within the community. Also, there's a strong sentiment across otherkin subcommunities that people should rely solely on their own observations and feelings to determine whether the otherkin label applies to them, and what species or form they best identify as. This advice is meant to discourage people from being overly deferential and letting others tell them what to identify as. Because of this, I would infer that the indoctrination involved in the Asena narratives would necessarily be rejected as a basis for self-identification as otherkin, but it does not exclude someone from claiming an otherkin identity either. Though, that doesn't mean that otherkin can't point to such mythologies as evidence that the pertinent question of an individual's species identity versus species membership is not a new question. --Tathar (talk) 17:19, 27 June 2013 (UTC)
As for the merger, I didn't know about that, since I'm only recently hearing about this project for the first time. Could you explain the entirety of the new scope? From first impressions, the name makes it sound that any topic with skeptics (rational or otherwise) would be included in the WikiProject, but from viewing the topics already included, that does not appear to be the intent of the project. (As an aside, would it be helpful if I broke down the core otherkin claim into its subclaims? Maybe that could help categorize it better.) --Tathar (talk) 17:19, 27 June 2013 (UTC)


I refuse to accept that is is a thing now. (talk) 06:34, 4 April 2014 (UTC)

Request for deletion.[edit]

Page needs to redirect to one or more of these:

People who believe they are elves are, pretty obviously, psychotic, whether or not they are otherwise more or less harmless or capable of holding down a day job. The content of their delusions is no more worthy of inclusion in an encyclopedia than any other madman's. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:27, 20 August 2014 (UTC)

The page has a fair number of sources, so it seems unlikely that an AFD would be successful. Titanium Dragon (talk) 20:54, 22 September 2014 (UTC)

Intro quote[edit]

The last line of the introduction has a quotation mark after it. Is it part of the same quote as the preceding sentence? If so, we should move the reference after the full quote. If not, then we need to source it. Titanium Dragon (talk) 20:54, 22 September 2014 (UTC)

External links[edit]

Should we link to in the external links section? I'm not so sure right now. Especially because it contains pages like this (detailed negative personal info about otherwise non-notable people, it's like linking to Encyclopedia Dramatica). — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 10:55, 17 July 2015 (UTC)

It is an important resource to the community, that contains various information about its history. The information contained in that particular article is for safety. Shiro Ulv (talk) 10:56, 17 July 2015 (UTC)


I don't think we can add at this time if the malware thing isn't sorted out. (Don't go there if you don't have an anti-virus program.) — Jeraphine Gryphon (talk) 11:00, 17 July 2015 (UTC)

There is no malware on the site, as it is a PDF file. Overzealous anti-virus programs such as Avast! can false flag URLs and files, as is occurring here. A discussion to add this link has already occurred, with the general opinion being that it is relevant. Shiro Ulv (talk) 11:02, 17 July 2015 (UTC)