Talk:Exorcism of Roland Doe

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Since the move II, lead par. and internal citation[edit]

Just dropping a line that I have (hopefully) streamlined the lead par. further. It looked stilted and I can see why - all fixed now I think. What I want to know is why, though, when citing this, Roland Doe works but The Exorcism of Roland Doe obviously does not! (talk) 03:46, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

Exorcism of Roland Doe - sorry, experimenting with this form of the citation to see if it links. (talk) 03:53, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

The second one is the one you want - the article title doesn't include the word 'the'. TechnoSymbiosis (talk) 03:54, 17 March 2011 (UTC)
You mentioned on my talk page you were interested in nominating the article for an award, along the lines of Anna Anderson. That article is a featured article, which has a very rigorous set of criteria to satisfy. If you're interested in climbing the ladder with this article, I think you'll want to start by looking at the Good Article criteria first and working from there, then submitting it for assessment. Good and Featured articles require a lot of effort to get to a high quality and the assessors will typically pull the article to bits in the process, so be prepared for that. TechnoSymbiosis (talk) 04:56, 17 March 2011 (UTC)
I had a quick skim of the article and I don't believe it's at an appropriate level to nominate for GA at this stage. I'd strongly suggest reading the criteria and using it as a basis to improve the article. Among other things, the prose could use a lot of work to be more clear and encyclopaedic in tone, and the link to the Catholic Church in the article should not be an external link. TechnoSymbiosis (talk) 05:06, 17 March 2011 (UTC)

Gracious thanks. Will take under advisement, and thanks for reading it through - it does have many weak spots. My hope is to nominate it in future. If you return here soon, will you please clarify the reference to "the external link to the Catholic Church"? It was one of the rigors required to even get that comment to be left there! (talk) 02:53, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

I haven't assessed the validity of the link, but external links shouldn't be directly included in the article body like that. Instead, turn it into an inline citation using <ref></ref> tags. TechnoSymbiosis (talk) 03:52, 18 March 2011 (UTC)

TechSym, I apologize but I have my hands full. I must confess, I'm too stupid to get that turned into an inline citation ... hopefully someone else has done it. It was pretty tough figuring out how to insert the thing to begin with, and it is a vital reference that belongs in the article. Though as you say, it belongs as an inline citation. The validity of the link is certainly up to the standards of your assessment! (talk) 00:47, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

Article protection[edit]

While I appreciate and understand the need for protection here, given the changes that have been foisted on this article, and needed correction ... could someone please begin posting a protection notice HERE? I see some grammatical errors and terminology that requires attention, and cannot get to it!

In other words, will whomever it is protecting the page please stop doing that without notification at least? We'd like to be notified here at the talk page! (talk) 21:54, 2 April 2011 (UTC)

The article isn't protected, but I see on your talk page that your IP has been used for vandalism before. It's possible the IP has been given a temporary block from editing as a result. You should consider registering for an account, as IP addresses are shared across multiple users and you may be suffering from a problem caused by another user of your IP address. TechnoSymbiosis (talk) 02:17, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

TechSym, I know I have replied to someone about this before. I have not committed any vandalism anywhere here, ever. It appears a school shares my IP range - but so do a few choice troublemakers such as those who regularly vandalize Claddagh ring, which article I helped compose and research. There is naturally nothing I can do to prove I didn't do it, except to state that I'm fairly well recognized by my work here. (talk) 04:20, 10 April 2011 (UTC)

Jumped back in to say, I was IP - but no longer. As I have explained, my provider alternates our IP addresses for security reasons. We have no control over that, and it appears the provider has no control over it either since they have exposed my city of residence several times! (talk) 04:22, 10 April 2011 (UTC)
This is fairly normal for ISPs, particularly considering the exhausted IPv4 address pool. For the record, I never said you did any vandalising, simply that your IP has been pegged before. As I said above, registering an account here would alleviate some of the problems you've been having as your account is unique and won't be used by other people on the same IP address. TechnoSymbiosis (talk) 04:07, 11 April 2011 (UTC)

Techno, it's been a while since I could post. I wanted you to understand, I wasn't upset at you, nor did I believe you accused anyone of anything. I know you were tracking the IP activity, I can understand that. (talk) 06:40, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

All good, I didn't make any assumptions =) Are you still having trouble editing the article? If so, you'll probably want to raise the issue somewhere (probably WP:AN?) to try to get it resolved. I suspect they'll also recommend you register an account though. TechnoSymbiosis (talk) 01:38, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

Use of tertiary sources[edit]

Nearly all the details of the exorcism in the article are sourced either directly or indirectly to Allen's book Possessed. While secondary sourcing is preferred, Allen's book is a perfectly fine secondary source. What is odd is using tertiary sources which only parrot Allen's book, providing no synthesis with other sources, or new insights. I suggest that all of the content sourced indirectly to Allen's book be directly sourced to the book to avoid confusion on sourcing. aprock (talk) 17:38, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

I've gone ahead and cleaned up a lot of the article copy. There was a fair amount of duplication, and unsourced dramatization. I've synched most of the copy directly to the sources provided. I've also removed the citations to A Faraway Ancient Country which is just summarizing History Channel segment. In all cases where that source was used, the content was already better sourced to the existing citations, so no content was affected. I'm not sure the article is quite ready for a GA nomination, but it's much closer. aprock (talk) 18:51, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
The work on this article has been excellent, commendable and I love the way the finished article stands now. It looks just like an encyclopedic article ought to look. I tried so hard for a long time to get it into this shape, and failed. May I just say, the reference section is longer than the article and I think it's remarkably structured for being so long. Djathinkimacowboy 19:06, 8 December 2011 (UTC)

Copyright problem[edit]

I have cleaned this article of a substantial copyright problem with several sources, most particularly the Strange Magazine article, from which we had taken over 1,200 words. Wikipedia's copyright policies forbid extensive quotations from non-free sources, and this is no question that this source is non-free; it reserves all rights. Please see Wikipedia:Copy-paste, Wikipedia:Copyrights and Wikipedia:Non-free content. It is permitted to use brief excerpts of copyright content for transformative reasons, but we cannot take substantial content from any source. While there is no precise word count that constitutes infringement, it's worth remembering that in one extreme case, 300 words from a 500 page book were found to infringe. While that was an extreme case, 1,200 words is likely to be substantial from any article. Several of the other sources, too, were far too extensively copied. Wikipedia articles must rely on proper paraphrase to a great extent when the sources are copyrighted. While information is free for reuse, expression is reserved and must be incorporated conservatively within policy. --Moonriddengirl (talk) 01:41, 20 June 2012 (UTC)

Cooper/Epperson source[edit]

The book "Evil: Satan, Sin, and Psychology" by Terry D. Cooper and Cindy K. Epperson, published by Paulist Press is being heavily cited in our article. I just read through the relevant chapter, and the authors are writing from a religious perspective, e.g. "Although they are not frequent, exorcisms are necessary for casting out the demonic" and "Cases of genuine possession cannot be explained by psychiatry" etc. I'm going to remove the extensive narrative passages cited to this source and edit accordingly. - LuckyLouie (talk) 13:03, 23 September 2014 (UTC)

Hi User:LuckyLouie, I do not think there is a problem with leaving the reference in the article as long as we attribute the claim. I am going to reword the quote you excised to state "Terry D. Cooper, a professor of psychology, as well as a Christian by faith, has stated..."; because this article is about an exorcism, it is important to include how Christian clerics and associated individuals, interpreted the case while balancing it with how skeptics interpret it in order to fulfill WP:NPOV. I hope this helps. With regards, `AnupamTalk 15:06, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
Looking through the recent article history, it seems that administrator User:Philg88, as well as User:Ian.thomson and (the latter of whom I would recommend create an account), have also been involved. Before you make a major change to the article User:LuckyLouie, I hope to have some other users offer their thoughts. As I mentioned above, my preference is that we share the perspectives of both the Church, as well as skeptical perspectives for balance. With regards, AnupamTalk 15:25, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
I've removed the bit "However, this theory is countered..." because the claim that Doe went on to have a normal life, or that he didn't have have had OCD, MPD, schizophrenia, or Tourette's counter the claim that he was pretending is absolutely unrelated to the argument that he was just pretending. While I don't necessarily object to including Cooper and Epperson's claim about Doe's supposed mental health with proper attribution and due weight, they should not be used as a red herring. Ian.thomson (talk) 15:40, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
Dear User:Ian.thomson, thanks for that. I did not see that statement there when I performed the revert and because it was uncited and unattributed, I agree with your removal of that sentence. Also, thanks for your comment about Cooper and Epperson's claim. I feel the same way. With regards, AnupamTalk 15:48, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
The IP responsible for that bit ( in the article [[has a clear agenda, shown through their preaching and censorship in the Theistic Satanism article and a borderline-attack rant on an admin's page. Honestly, until the IP is blocked or repents, I'm checking on their edits through the undo window, and I invite others to do so. Ian.thomson (talk) 16:04, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
The book Evil: Satan, Sin, and Psychology should be removed, it's fringe and unreliable yet is used on the article a number of times. Goblin Face (talk) 19:22, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
I also question the use of these sources:
  • A Faraway Ancient Country. Lulu. (self published)
  • The dark side of God: a quest for the lost heart of Christianity. Element. June 1999. ISBN 9781862044586. (religious perspective)
  • Paranormal Experiences. Mehra Shrikhande. Unicorn Books. ISBN 9788178061665. (paranormal perspective)
Also, Possessed: the true story of an exorcism by Thomas B Allen is being misused: the author suggested the boy could have fabricated the events or could have been suffering from mental illness [1] but this opinion is conspicuously absent from the article. - LuckyLouie (talk) 19:40, 23 September 2014 (UTC)
My main concern was the IP, and would not have been involved otherwise. I will agree that the Lulu source needs to go, but otherwise have no real desire to get involved. Ian.thomson (talk) 01:38, 24 September 2014 (UTC)
Had just flagged the first of these and was about to discuss others before seeing this thread. Good Spirits, Bad Spirits: How to Distinguish Between Them is also self-published, being printed by iUniverse. --McGeddon (talk) 10:48, 24 September 2014 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Removed statements sourced only to WP:SELFPUB sources. jps (talk) 11:05, 24 September 2014 (UTC)

Date of Allen's book[edit]

The article doesn't mention when Allen wrote Possessed - although the lede implies that he wrote it prior to 1971 and it was inspiration in part for The Exorcist, it looks like Possessed was actually written in 1993? Is that right, or am I reading the blurb for a later edition of the book? --McGeddon (talk) 16:38, 26 September 2014 (UTC)

First edition was published by Doubleday in 1993. [2]. This is one of the most error-riddled articles I've ever seen. - LuckyLouie (talk) 16:52, 26 September 2014 (UTC)