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WikiProject Mammals (Rated Disambig-class)
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Western Ringtail[edit]

Western Ringtail Pseudocheirus occidentalis is accepted as a full species by the Australian federal government as well as by the Western Australian state government. Maias 11:02, 3 December 2007 (UTC)

Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed, 2005) is the authoritative and canonical listing of mammals and is written by scientists. Australia's governments are not the canonical listing. - UtherSRG (talk) 11:15, 3 December 2007 (UTC)
I am reverting to the previous version. This is a simple disambiguation page with a valid link to a valid page elsewhere; it is not a taxonomic list, nor is it making taxonomic judgements.Maias (talk) 07:54, 20 December 2007 (UTC)
Your valid link did not exist when I first reverted, I believe, and so my later revert was based off of not knowing you had created the article. However, you used incorrect information (the Australian government does not decide what taxa are species and which are not). I've fixed both this list and the Western Ringtail Possum article to reflect the standard of MSW3. - UtherSRG (talk) 12:05, 20 December 2007 (UTC)
That seems reasonable - at least until MSW4 in ?2008.Maias (talk) 12:22, 20 December 2007 (UTC)

Partial matches[edit]

Most of these animals are partial matches and should either go in the see also section or be removed. Widefox; talk 17:12, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

I agree and I have removed the "other" and "see also" entries that appear to be partial matches only. If anyone else wants to restore the partial matches, please discuss here or in a section below that also addresses this topic. --doncram 13:52, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
It has been a few days and there's been no explanation anywhere, despite invitation, so I am now re-cutting out the partial matches that are not plausible meanings of "ringtail", per Disambiguation guidelines. --doncram 15:57, 18 September 2015 (UTC)

Ringtail as common name and as SIA or Dab[edit]

FYI, this Ringtail article was converted to a Set Index Article (SIA). It's an animal common name, it seems. While experts might see huge differences between the various animals listed, to a regular person many of them may be pretty much equivalent. And/or maybe experts use "ringtail" loosely for a grouping, too.

A concern was brought up at wt:DPL that there are quite different species listed on the SIA: "Apart from the possums, ringtail lists all kinds of animals as different as apples are from carrots. Those are very distinct animals and the links to that page should be disambiguated. There never has been any consensus for using a SIA in this kind of situation."

A response by me, consistent with the discussion above this about partial matches, was: "It is quite likely that all of the "Other" and all of the "See also" items should be removed entirely from the SIA, and then it is more tightly defined. Unless any of those really are known sometimes as 'ringtail' (unclear), they are all merely "partial matches", and should never have been listed on the disambiguation page.... my belief is that "ringtail" is a common name referring to some or all of the mammals, and is used in statements like a zoo-keeper saying "This zoo really must obtain a ringtail for its collection" (meaning any one of the mammals). The inbound links include a couple usages in Wikipedia like "this zoo has a ringtail" without specifying which species, as if it is not important or as if it is understood what one specifically is meant. I inserted {{siadn}} tags on those inbound links, I believe. It is worth asking biology people to review this example.... I plan to defer then to zoo-keepers or biology people about what is meant by 'ringtail' in common usage among those who use the term."

To move this along, I have just now removed the following from the article, because they look like partial matches to me and I don't believe any of these are ever called merely "ringtail":

from "Other"
from "See also"

The article already had a "for" link about Ringtail (disease) and now it also has a "for" link about the RNAS Burscough (HMS Ringtail).

Comments or action welcomed. --doncram 06:51, 8 September 2015 (UTC)

After one comment elsewhere, at wt:DPL#Ringtail, an editor converted this page back to a disambiguation page. My several comments:
  • Why not discuss the details here as requested? Doesn't the information need to be with the article for future editors?
  • I do appreciate that the inbound links were more specifically disambiguated, which is good and proper for inbound links to either a SIA or a disambiguation page. By google searches the editor found that all could be disambiguated to Ring-tailed cat ("Bassariscus astutus, a mammal of the raccoon family"). Great!
  • The editor asserted that because all of the recently extant inbound links could be disambiguated to that one meaning, that that "proved" validity of the page being a dab page not an SIA. I don't agree that anything was "proved" that way--that is certainly too strong a statement, right? I mean, no one (me included) has provided sourced evidence either way, whether "ringtail" is or is not used as a common name for the various mammals listed on this page as SIA or as disambiguation page. The new evidence would support that this page should be a redirect to Ring-tailed cat, perhaps.
  • Midas02, I would appreciate if you could acknowledge that it is a matter of judgment/opinion, still, whether this page should be a SIA or a DAB, and state your judgment justifying your switch, here? I think one could have, I think you do have, a judgment that could be valid though you have not stated it here at least (and i think not there either). And I will not edit war or much dispute that my judgment is better than a valid judgment stated by someone else, when neither of us have sources to back us up, but I would like to hear a valid opinion stated and identified as being an opinion, please.
  • To be clear, I acknowledge that the work done takes away evidence that supported my view (my view was that zookeepers and others might use the term "ringtail" meaning any one of several species in a sentence like "this zoo really should get a ringtail for its collection"; the (weak) evidence was the Wikipedia usages at inbound links where disambiguation did not seem possible). This causes me to change opinion at least somewhat (as a Bayesian should) ... I personally still think it is possible that there is usage that way, but I have more uncertainty about that now.
  • I hope we can agree that if/when someone provides sourced evidence about usage of the term "ringtail", we should defer to that. And that if/when someone with expertise/knowledge about usage of the term in practice makes a different, informed judgment, we should defer to that, too.
  • And as I stated above--it is my judgment, and no one has disagreed with it--that the partial matched for non-mammals are not appropriate for SIA or DAB, I have again removed them. I do not believe for one milli-second that when a person uses the term "ringtail" that they mean the town "Ringtail Creek", in Queensland, for example. And I highly doubt that Ring-tailed cardinalfish is meant, either, etc.
  • Also I restored the hidden administration category that was labelled "Please keep, even if this page is no longer a set index article", okay? That will enable me and others to see which pages have had disagreement later, after a dab to SIA conversion. I am trying to learn when to convert to SIA and when not, and if converting, how to convert in way so that it sticks. Disagreement is okay, of course, but please allow me and others to record where disagreement has happened.
sincerely, --doncram 10:33, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
Evidence on usage of "ringtail" as a common name includes:
--doncram 14:02, 15 September 2015 (UTC)
Doncram, all of this is not really worth the discussion. For the time being, the links to the page were resolved by disambiguating. So be it. If in future, there would be a need for an SIA, then one could reconsider to split off some sections into an SIA.
Most of the "partial matches" were actually valuable as well. I can imagine pigeon holders holding a competition for "ringtails", and some other matches are close enough to be considered for inclusion. Live and let live is my device, there's no point in being overzealous in these matters. When you remove it, someone else might add it again at some later point. --Midas02 (talk) 22:34, 18 September 2015 (UTC)
Thank you Midas02 for commenting here. Frankly I am a tad irritated because of what has seemed like obtuse editing at this page.
  • Surely you're not criticising use of a talk page to address disagreement apparent in another editor's unexplained, seemingly bizarre edits to a page? I believe it is highly recommended to go to the Talk page instead of merely edit-warring, and that is what i did. I consider it rude when another editor repeats a contested edit on a page without opening or responding to Talk page discussion. It is uncivil.
  • One might also say inappropriate links to disambiguation pages get added all the time, and yet you and I and others in wp:DPL keep paring them away. If inappropriate entries on disambiguation pages aren't pared off, dab pages become nonsensical and serve readers--and disambiguators--poorly, as was the case with this one.
  • I believe we share concern about quality of disambiguation going on within the wp:MDC competition. I am quite sure that the nonsensical entries impair proper disambiguation, and are sometimes erroneously chosen as new targets for dablinks being "fixed" incorrectly. So it is within wp:DPL remit to engage in the paring, to prevent later wp:DPL mistakes, IMO.
  • Even if there is not edit-warring going on, use of a dab Talk page to give notes on whether entries are appropriate or not seems good to me, to provide continuity and help end cycles of adding and subtracting them.
About specific entries:
  • I won't contest if you want to act on your guess that the ring-tailed pigeon might sometimes be called "ringtail". My guess is that that it would not be, but yours is as good as mine.
  • I put in some effort to fix up the article behind one entry that was bizarrely restored multiple times by another editor, the entry being "RNAS Burscough (HMS Ringtail), a former Fleet Air Arm naval station in Burscough, Lancashire, England", presented as a valid target for "ringtail", which it is not. The article did not explain what "HMS Ringtail" had to do at all with the airfield properly named RNAS Burscough, but now it does. And it's clear that there is no way anyone uses "ringtail" to refer to "HMS Ringtail", the airfield. I temporarily relegated it to the "See also" section, then thought about it more, and deleted it. It should not be restored.
  • There was some legitimacy about one previous entry, "ringtailed harrier", but not as it was presented before (as "Ring-tail harrier), an informal term for the juveniles and females of several species of harrier (Circus)", which did not support it ever being called "ringtail"). I think is much improved as now appears: "Ring-tails (Harrier), an informal term for the juveniles and females of several species of harrier (Circus)".
I appreciate that in the third round of editing, finally, that the administrative category with request "admin cat, pls do not remove even if this is no longer a set index article", was not again deleted. Whoopie.
thanks, --doncram 14:50, 19 September 2015 (UTC)
Hi Doncram. I'm being late in replying, but only very infrequently do I check my watchlist. And I'm not always notified when my name is being used on pages as well... don't ask me why. I'm going to take you up on your proposition, and restore some entries, in the correct sections where they belong. Including some that could go into the See Also section as they are partial matches. It doesn't harm anyone by mentioning them.
On your comments on the airbase. I'm British, and someone could very easily say he was stationed at "Ringtail", so I don't see why that should be an issue.
By the way, what's your issue with the "admin cat, pls do not remove even if this is no longer a set index article"? What purpose is it suppose to serve?
Rgds, --Midas02 (talk) 19:04, 4 October 2015 (UTC)
I cleaned up the dab, and used the bio dab template + added a couple from Wiktionary. User:Doncram what is the admin category for? Widefox; talk 21:06, 23 December 2015 (UTC)