Talk:Paul Conrad/GA1

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

GA Review[edit]

Article (edit | visual edit | history) · Article talk (edit | history) · Watch

Reviewer: Moisejp (talk · contribs) 04:28, 19 July 2014 (UTC)

Hi, Viriditas. I will review this article. I will try to start this review within a couple of days, and to finish it within several days. Thanks. Moisejp (talk) 04:28, 19 July 2014 (UTC)

There are no disambig links in the article. There are a number of external links of various indeterminate or broken statuses—I will need to investigate each one of these individually. Moisejp (talk) 04:54, 21 July 2014 (UTC)

I only found one, and I fixed it.[1] I'll look for more. Viriditas (talk) 21:50, 24 July 2014 (UTC)
Did you click the "external links" link in the toolbox to the right? For me, it is showing one unrecognized direct, one connection failed or remote server error, and "heuristics resolved as likely dead" status. I meant to look at these more carefully as part of my review, but if you happen to resolve them first, that would of course be OK too. Moisejp (talk) 05:21, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
I evidently missed a few. Now they are all fixed. I could not fix the "invalid type (application/pdf) for .doc file" other than to specify it's a PDF file inline, which I've done. Viriditas (talk) 10:07, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
Done. Viriditas (talk) 00:32, 1 August 2014 (UTC)
  • OK, this seems to be all good. Moisejp (talk) 04:47, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
GA review (see here for what the criteria are, and here for what they are not)
  1. It is reasonably well written.
    a (prose, no copyvios, spelling and grammar): b (MoS for lead, layout, word choice, fiction, and lists):
    There were some minor style concerns, but they have been corrected.
  2. It is factually accurate and verifiable.
    a (reference section): b (citations to reliable sources): c (OR):
    No original research. All the sources appear reliable.
  3. It is broad in its coverage.
    a (major aspects): b (focused):
    Good scope, stays focused.
  4. It follows the neutral point of view policy.
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. It is stable.
    No edit wars, etc.:
    Stable. There was a minor incident during the review where two editors had some disagreement, but that appears to be resolved.
  6. It is illustrated by images and other media, where possible and appropriate.
    a (images are tagged and non-free content have fair use rationales): b (appropriate use with suitable captions):
    There is a fair use rationale included for the one non-free image. There is no caption in the infobox picture.
    Added. Viriditas (talk) 21:47, 24 July 2014 (UTC)
  7. Overall:


  • "He is best known for his work as the chief editorial cartoonist for the Los Angeles Times during a time when the newspaper was in transition under the direction of publisher Otis Chandler who recruited Conrad from the Denver Post.": grammatically I am convinced you need a comma after "Chandler". The phrase "who recruited Conrad from the Denver Post" is not required to identify Chandler, and cannot be a restrictive clause.
  • "At the conservative Times, Conrad brought a more liberal editorial perspective that readers both celebrated and criticized, but also respected for his sheer talent and his ability to speak truth to power.": Again grammatically/semantically, the sentence doesn't seem to quite work. It is the perspective that the readers celebrated and criticized, but I think it is Conrad the man that readers respected for his talent and ability to speak the truth. Moisejp (talk) 05:47, 22 July 2014 (UTC)
    • I see what you mean, but I read it like this: "readers both celebrated and criticized [his perspective], but also respected [his perspective] [due to Conrad's] talent [as a political cartoonist] and his [editorial] ability to speak truth to power." Of course, if I have to explain this, then something is wrong. Can you suggest some changes? Viriditas (talk) 21:56, 24 July 2014 (UTC)
  • I will try to think of a good wording to suggest to you. Moisejp (talk) 05:07, 26 July 2014 (UTC)
  • I have tried copy-editing this sentence. See what you think—we can always try something else if you disagree with the edit. Moisejp (talk) 04:59, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

Early life:

  • "Conrad was born an identical twin to Robert and Florence Conrad." I would suggest taking out "identical twin" here. The next sentence already indicated he had a twin—maybe you could add "identical" to the next sentence. The other reason is that the first time I read "born an identical twin to Robert and Florence Conrad" I thought, "What doe this mean? Robert and Florence were his identical twins?" Obviously, that reading wouldn't make sense, but the point is I found the sentence a little confusing at first. Moisejp (talk) 05:07, 26 July 2014 (UTC)
  • This is probably quite a matter of personal preference, but when I work on articles, I tend to add references to every single sentence, so that there is absolutely no ambiguity. You don't do that, and I assume your system is that anything after the last reference is included under the next reference. If that makes more sense to you, that's fine. In the Early life section, I was wondering whether you would want to add a ref to at least "He originally planned to attend Iowa State University after the war in 1945, but instead taught himself to play bass and joined a big band." The reason is that there is a paragraph break, so that creates somewhat of a break in the flow of ideas—for me, it would be prudent to at least add a ref here. Moisejp (talk) 06:16, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
    • Done. I tend to move the refs to the end of the paragraph for readability, aside from direct quotes, statistics and controversial material. The material in question can be found in ref 3, so I moved it to the end. I would have to look, but I think it's also in ref 6 as well, and of course, in ref 9. There's a few more that discuss it. Viriditas (talk) 05:10, 29 July 2014 (UTC)
  • "He received his degree in art in 1950." Add "meanwhile" or something to the start of the sentence? In the next paragraph, we find out the result of Conrad's professors sending his cartoons to the Denver Post. I feel that as is, the sentence about getting has degree sits kind of uncomfortably in the middle of the story about the Post, but that "meanwhile" would help. Moisejp (talk) 06:16, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
    • It does sound weird, but I'm not sure "meanwhile" will help. I think there is only one solution, and that's to move it to the first sentence in the first paragraph of the next section. I can't think of any other way to do it. Let me try it and see what you say. Viriditas (talk) 04:42, 29 July 2014 (UTC)
      • Done. Does this work? Viriditas (talk) 04:45, 29 July 2014 (UTC)
  • Yes, that looks good to me. Actually, I just noticed now, I wonder whether it would be clearer to remove "where he drew cartoons for the next 14 years". This is followed by "At this time, Conrad sought..." It may not be totally clear at first whether this was in 1950 or 1964. Another reason it doesn't hurt to remove "the next 14 years" is that we later learn he changed jobs in 1964. What do you think about this idea? Moisejp (talk) 05:15, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
  • I want to make it clear to the reader in the beginning that he spent the next 14 years at the Post. I agree that the "at this time" bit can be confusing, but what I'm trying to get across is 1) he joined the Post and stayed there for the next 14 years, 2) after he joined the Post he consulted with his childhood mentor who discouraged him, and 3) he worked harder as a result, and won the Pulitzer. I don't see how removing the time frame introducing his career span helps. Is there room for improvement? Sure. Viriditas (talk) 09:36, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
  • I tried out "Early in his career..." What do you think? Moisejp (talk) 04:42, 1 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Brilliant. I wish I would have thought of that myself. Viriditas (talk) 03:09, 2 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Except for the bathroom walls issue, dealt with under Spot checks below, this section looks good. Moisejp (talk) 05:23, 19 August 2014 (UTC)

Denver Post:

  • "The hard work finally paid off when Conrad received the Pulitzer Prize in 1964 for editorial cartooning." Simplify to "In Conrad received the Pulitzer Prize in 1964 for editorial cartooning." I'm uncomfortable with the current sentence for at least a couple of reasons. One is that he had other forms of success before his Pulitzer—for example, his recognition from Time. Another reason is "finally" sounds just slightly subjective. Moisejp (talk) 06:16, 28 July 2014 (UTC)
    • It refers to the previous sentence, "This discouragement from his childhood role model pushed Conrad to work harder at the Post." The recognition from Time isn't equivalent to receiving a Pulitzer. However, I agree it is somewhat subjective in terms of the sources, so I'll change it. Viriditas (talk) 04:32, 29 July 2014 (UTC)
      • Done, but it is now a weaker read and more of a X occurred on Y date list, which is poor prose. Is it subjective to note that 1) Conrad said during this time that he was working harder to become successful due to criticism from his childhood role model, and 2) the hard work paid off with a Pulitzer? This is a rhetorical question. Viriditas (talk) 04:38, 29 July 2014 (UTC)
  • I personally prefer your newly edited version. However, I do see your point that the sentence about the Pulitzer may possibly fall a little flat. If you feel strongly that it was better before, you could revert to your earlier version. Another idea: (after the sentence about praise from Time) "Conrad's success continued when in 1964 he received the Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning." Moisejp (talk) 05:15, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
  • I'm not going to revert. Your criticism was good. Viriditas (talk) 00:39, 1 August 2014 (UTC)
  • This section looks good. Moisejp (talk) 17:25, 24 August 2014 (UTC)


  • Reading the citation, Conrad "admits" to not being objective or says that "he can never be accused of being objective". This would help with context for why his work created critical review. Would the section title also be better written as "Critical review" or such, since controversy sections should be avoided if possible? Also, not sure how the review process works, so I hope this ok here. Thank you, --Malerooster (talk) 13:42, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
    • I'm not going to address Conrad's quote because you have taken it out of context and it has nothing to do with the controversy section. As for the current section title, it classifies what Wikipedia describes as "protracted public disputes" (see Wikipedia:Criticism). In other words, these are not "critical reviews" at all, but actual, public controversies that Conrad was involved with and that received media attention. As a result, I believe the current section title is appropriate and accurate per Wikipedia policies and guidelines, but as always, I am open to good suggestions for improvement. Viriditas (talk) 20:45, 30 July 2014 (UTC)
  • This section looks good. Moisejp (talk) 18:05, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

Los Angeles Times:

  • "Unperturbed, Conrad considered his place on this list as a badge of honor, but members of the list were exposed to greater scrutiny by the government and subject to investigation." I feel this would be better as two sentences. It feels like a bit of a stretch to try to make this one extended idea. Moisejp (talk) 04:57, 1 August 2014 (UTC)
  • "but no changes were made" Should this be "no charges were made"? Or is "changes" the intended idea—i.e., the IRS did not deem it necessary to change any of Conrad's submitted numbers? Moisejp (talk) 04:57, 1 August 2014 (UTC)
    • It's definitely "changes". An IRS audit involves proposes changes to a tax return. "Charges" is an entirely different level of malfeasance. According to the IRS, "Audits can result in no changes or changes. Any proposed changes to your return will be explained.[2] However, I believe the source also supports the term "changes". I'll check... Viriditas (talk) 03:15, 2 August 2014 (UTC)
      • Confirmed. "Changes" is the correct term. For only one example, see the NYT obit: "He made the Nixon “enemies list,” and his taxes were audited four times, without changes."[3] Viriditas (talk) 03:30, 2 August 2014 (UTC)
  • "Editorial cartoonist Michael Ramirez replaced Conrad at the Times with a conservative approach." Suggested change: "Conservative cartoonist Michael Ramirez replaced Conrad at the Times." Or "Conrad was replaced at the Times with conservative cartoonist Michael Ramirez."
The later looks pretty good. --Malerooster (talk) 18:40, 1 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Los Angeles Times section looks good too. Moisejp (talk) 17:32, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

Personal life:

  • Can this be reviewed for prose as well? Thank you, --Malerooster (talk) 13:46, 30 July 2014 (UTC)

Review progress

  • Hello. I have had a busy couple of days—and also I have been following the Administrators' Noticeboard/Incidents page to try to look for evidence this article may be stable moving forward. But regardless, I hope to give the article the benefit of the doubt and do some more work on it in the next couple of days. Thank you for your patience. Moisejp (talk) 06:04, 3 August 2014 (UTC)


  • "Conrad gave The Trinity a verde patina to give it the appearance of copper": I was going to suggest a wiki-link or something to "verda patina" because I am not familiar with that term. But I couldn't immediately find any page to suggest to link to. Or reword it to something like "painted The Trinity to give it the appearance of copper". Or if you think it is obvious enough from the context that "verde patina" has something to do with painting, then leaving it as is could be another possibility. Moisejp (talk) 14:00, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
    • I think it is a pretty common way of describing a faux copper finish. I'll see if I can't add a link to make it more obvious. Viriditas (talk) 03:41, 7 August 2014 (UTC)
  • This section looks good. Moisejp (talk) 18:05, 24 August 2014 (UTC)
  • "Rancho Palos Verdes": wiki-link, or change to "Rancho Palos Verdes, California". I didn't know where it was. Or add something like "Conrad also created several works of public art that are on display in California" (since conceivably some people might not know where Santa Monica is either). Moisejp (talk) 14:00, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
    • I have no preference. Keep in mind, it is linked in the infobox as his place of death. I'll add another link to the sculpture section if you like. Viriditas (talk) 03:49, 7 August 2014 (UTC)
      • Done. I left the link in the infobox, added the link to the sculpture section per your suggestion, and removed the existing link from the death section. Per the MOS, two links may be acceptable, while three may be considered excessive. Viriditas (talk) 03:53, 7 August 2014 (UTC)


  • "He earned the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Cartooning three times..." Not a big deal, but personally I would treat a new section as being somewhat of a clean break, and would re-mention the person's name, i.e., "Conrad earned..." But if you disagree that that's necessary, no worries. Moisejp (talk) 14:00, 6 August 2014 (UTC)
  • This section looks good. Moisejp (talk) 18:07, 24 August 2014 (UTC)

Personal life:

  • "Conrad was an imposing man with a powerful voice who..." I think I saw you had a disagreement with Malerooster about this. For me, this is a grey zone, that on one hand sounds subjective, but on the other is (presumably) supported by the sources. So it's possibly acceptable, but if there's any doubt, why not add "reportedly" or "by some accounts"?
    • I believe that's what I did after the concern was raised. In the current version (modified after the objection was raised) it says that Conrad was an imposing man with a powerful voice who was often seen smoking a pipe while working on his cartoons. I then follow that introduction by citing Rainey and the Library of Congress to support it. If you believe it requires some kind of change or hedge, then I trust you implicitly to make the correct decision. The problem I had with Malerooster is that he deleted sourced material and seemed to be engaging in POV editing. Viriditas (talk) 00:04, 9 August 2014 (UTC)
  • "Although he was raised as a Republican and a Catholic, his views changed as he aged. By 1960, the media was comparing his point of view to an "Adlai Stevenson Democrat"." Is this referring (I think) to Adlai Stevenson II? I would definitely put a wiki-link here. I had no idea who Adlai Stevenson was, which (assuming there are other people like me) diminishes the value of the reference. Moisejp (talk) 03:57, 8 August 2014 (UTC)
  • "While Conrad consistently remained anti-abortion in his outlook, his stance later evolved into a pro-choice position when the government sought to restrict women's access to abortion." I think you mean here that later, although he personally would not recommend abortion, he recognized/supported other people's right to get an abortion if they chose to (or something along those lines). That's what I imagine you mean, but I think "consistently remained anti-abortion" and "later evolved into a pro-choice position" could well appear contradictory or at the very least confusing. I haven't read the source yet (will spot-check sources after I finish getting through the prose), but do you have any ideas to clarify if you mean that or something else? Moisejp (talk) 03:57, 8 August 2014 (UTC)
    • You're correct. I'll think about how to clarify it. Viriditas (talk) 00:07, 9 August 2014 (UTC)
      • Done. The easiest solution was to cite Schudel 2010. Problem solved. Viriditas (talk) 04:49, 23 August 2014 (UTC)


  • I noticed some of the references have retrieval dates, but some don't.
    • Only web references need them. Which one did you have in mind? Viriditas (talk) 10:03, 11 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Well, going through the web refs, there seem to a bunch that don't have them: starting at ref #3, 8, 12 (Time also needs to be italicized), 14, 17, 19 [these last bunch are all Time; do online subscription articles from magazines not require retrieval dates?], 20, 21, 27, 28, 38, 39 (requires italicization), 43, 44. Moisejp (talk) 14:42, 11 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Done. I don't think they are required for GAN and usage seems to differ. Print pubs. generally don't need them, but many editors use them to indicate when they last accessed the site. Viriditas (talk) 21:18, 11 August 2014 (UTC)
  • I think ref #31 (about Pulitzer Prizes) probably needs more information.
    • How about the page title, "Editorial Cartooning"? Viriditas (talk) 10:03, 11 August 2014 (UTC)
      • Done. I also added the category. Viriditas (talk) 10:06, 11 August 2014 (UTC)
  • I will do spot checks of the content of the references soon. Moisejp (talk) 04:44, 11 August 2014 (UTC)
  • At the end, I'll also go back and attend to any unresolved questions or issues that came up during the review. Moisejp (talk) 15:25, 11 August 2014 (UTC)

Spot checks:

  • "He attended St. Augustin Elementary School in Des Moines where he first began to show interest in art by writing on the bathroom stalls." The source says: "Paul later quipped that his cartooning career began with a drawing scrawled on the restroom wall at St. Augustin Elementary School in Des Moines. At age 8." A few problems: 1. "Quipped" suggests Conrad may not have been serious about this claim, and may have told it for comic effect; 2. The source only talks about drawing on one wall not multiple ones; 3. Writing and drawing are not the same thing, and although we can imagine "wall" may well = "stall" the source does not specify this. But I think the first issue is the biggest one, and I would suggest it may be prudent to remove this detail (about his first interest in art) from the narrative. Moisejp (talk) 04:05, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
    • It's a quip, but it's repeated in so many sources and in so many recorded interviews, it seems part of his narrative. He brings it up in almost every interview when asked how his career began, and it appears in many authoritative sources. I'm happy to dig up some more sources, but humorous or not, he's pretty serious about it being the beginning of his art career, and while I'm fairly certain he's serious, it may be more effective to use a direct quote here. If we didn't mention it, then the encyclopedia article would not be complete. What your query is really getting at is how we frame it, whether he is serious or joking, but as far as I can tell he's serious, but joking about it, at the same time. Viriditas (talk) 09:07, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
      • There's so many examples, I don't know where to begin. Here's a sample from the Paul Conrad entry in the Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives in the Gale database: "Conrad is the son of Robert H. Conrad, a freight and passenger agent, and his wife, Florence G. (Lawler) Conrad. Conrad attended Saint Augustine's elementary school in Des Moines, Iowa, where he first started making social comments with his natural drawing talents. Spotting a remark written on the wall in the boys' room, he proceeded to draw a cartoon to go with it." How about The New York Times obit: "Paul drew his first cartoon on the wall of a parochial school boys’ lavatory." On the other hand, it was the Associated Press wire story about his death that re-framed it as merely a joke: "The Times said Conrad later joked that his first political cartoon was a scrawl on the bathroom wall at his elementary school." However, I don't recall seeing this framed as a "joke" prior to the AP obit story. In fact, the Los Angeles Times wrote: "Paul later quipped that his cartooning career began with a drawing scrawled on the restroom wall at St. Augustin Elementary School in Des Moines. At age 8. "I learned that a picture is worth a thousand words," Conrad wrote, "and that, when the Establishment gets mad, they always go after the cartoonist, not the editorial writers." So while this is certainly a "quip", prior to the AP story it was not presented as a "joke", and there are dozens of sources reporting it straight, such as the Scribner Encyclopedia. Even the Library of Congress (French 1999) reported it straight: "He got his start drawing on the bathroom wall in St. Augustine's school in Des Moines, Iowa. He knew better than to write on the bathroom wall, he said. But he did illustrate someone else's editorial comment at age 8". Although I'm not certain, it looks like the LOC is citing Conrad's book, Conartist: 30 Years with the Los Angeles Times (1993) as their source. They go on to cite the full passage, which it appears the Los Angeles Times was referring to in the first place, and it appears to be very serious, not a joke, and Conrad uses it to explain his style. After illustrating the "editorial comment" on the school's bathroom wall, Conrad recalls, he learned four lessons from the experience:

First I learned that one picture is worth a thousand words, and that when the establishment gets mad, they always go after the cartoonist, not the editorial writer! Second, I learned that it takes a big man to laugh at himself and that, tragically, many of the members of the establishment are not very big men. Third, I learned that I could draw cartoons better than any other kid at St. Augustine's, and that people got excited about my drawings. Last, I learned there was deep inside me an urge to say what I thought about life and the establishment to any and all who would look at my drawings. There's too much to be concerned about, and I am a concerned citizen.

I think there must be a happy medium in the center where we can agree. If Conrad has been talking about this "quip" as a historical fact from at least 1993-2010, there's a reason it's been reported as much more than just a "joke". Conrad maintains he got his start as an artist scribbling on the bathroom wall of his school. However, the only source that framed it as a outright "joke" was the AP obit, after the fact. Conrad, however, was quite serious about the experience, funny as it may be. Viriditas (talk) 09:45, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
OK, sounds good then. I would suggest just changing the source used in the article to one that doesn't frame it as a joke, and make it one wall instead of "walls". Moisejp (talk) 14:47, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
Will do. I'm out the door at the moment. Viriditas (talk) 18:49, 14 August 2014 (UTC)
  • I believe this point still needs attending to. Moisejp (talk) 05:13, 19 August 2014 (UTC)
  • I know. I'll have it done tonight. No need to nag. :) Viriditas (talk) 04:41, 20 August 2014 (UTC)
  • "His bronze sculptures of U.S. presidents Abraham Lincoln, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, and George W. Bush, as well as civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., were featured at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art." The source refers to the museum as ""The Artists' Studio Gallery at The Avenue of the Peninsula" in Rolling Hills Estates, Calif." Just confirming that is the same museum (I know nothing about California museums). Moisejp (talk) 00:53, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
    • Yeah, that's the wrong source. I'll try and find the right one. Viriditas (talk) 03:24, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
      • Done. Temporary source added. I removed some information so that it conforms with the new source, however the old info was correct. Viriditas (talk) 04:02, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
        • Strike that. Maybe it was wrong. It seems the exhibition occurred in 1979. See Ianco-Starrels, Josine (March 18, 1979). Conrad Cartoons on View at LACMA. Los Angeles Times. "One hundred drawings and six sculptures by Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Paul Conrad are on view, Thursday through May 20, in the County Museum of Art's Contemporary Art Galleries." This means it couldn't include Clinton and Bush, but it's missing one. This missing sculpture is listed here but without access to the exhibition guide (which is listed as a publication in various indexes) I can't say for sure. Viriditas (talk) 04:52, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
          • Done. I just figured out how to fix this. Viriditas (talk) 05:06, 17 August 2014 (UTC)
  • Hi Viriditas. We are getting near the end of this process. I will spend some time on the weekend having some last looks, and hopefully we can finish everything off. Thanks for your patience! Moisejp (talk) 05:45, 22 August 2014 (UTC)
  • This article is in good shape and I'm passing to GA status. Moisejp (talk) 04:03, 25 August 2014 (UTC)