Talk:Skull Tower/GA1

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GA Review[edit]

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

Reviewer: LT910001 (talk · contribs) 02:00, 20 October 2013 (UTC)
2nd reviewer:Quadell (talk) 15:23, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
Nominator: 23 editor

Partial review by LT910001

If there are no objections, I'll take this review. I'll note at the outset I've had no role in editing or creating this article. I welcome other editors at any stage to contribute to this review. I will spend a day familiarising myself with the article and then provide an assessment. Kind regards, LT910001 (talk) 02:00, 20 October 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for waiting. In conducting this review, I will:

  • Provide an assessment using WP:GARC
  • If this article does not meet the criteria, explain what areas need improvement.
  • Provide possible solutions that may (or may not) be used to fix these.


Rate Attribute Review Comment
1. Well written:
1a. the prose is clear and concise, and the spelling and grammar are correct. Readable
1b. it complies with the manual of style guidelines for lead sections, layout, words to watch, fiction, and list incorporation.
2. Verifiable with no original research:
2a. it contains a list of all references (sources of information), presented in accordance with the layout style guideline.
2b. all in-line citations are from reliable sources, including those for direct quotations, statistics, published opinion, counter-intuitive or controversial statements that are challenged or likely to be challenged, and contentious material relating to living persons—science-based articles should follow the scientific citation guidelines.
2c. it contains no original research.
3. Broad in its coverage:
3a. it addresses the main aspects of the topic.
3b. it stays focused on the topic without going into unnecessary detail (see summary style).
4. Neutral: it represents viewpoints fairly and without editorial bias, giving due weight to each. An issue of contention remains (see below).
5. Stable: it does not change significantly from day to day because of an ongoing edit war or content dispute.
6. Illustrated, if possible, by images:
6a. images are tagged with their copyright status, and valid fair use rationales are provided for non-free content.
6b. images are relevant to the topic, and have suitable captions.
7. Overall assessment.


Small concerns; article can definitely make GA status within a reasonable time-frame. Notes:

  • Small grammatical concerns (eg "ten(hyphen)foot")  Done
  • Pronunciation transcription should use the international phonetic alphabet (WP:PRON)  Done
  • imbedded-> embedded  Done
  • Serbian translation of word for 'commander' is unnecessary and provided twice (lede, first section)  Done
  • Suggest remove "English traveller Alexander W. Kinglake." from the lede as there is still no article so it appears a little... random  Done
  • Serbian translation for skull tower doesn't need to be provided in section "Construction" as it's already provided in the lede and infobox.  Done
  • "Even prior to the dissolution, the tower held such significance in Serbian national consciousness that Vox, an extremist Muslim magazine from Sarajevo, sought to provoke ethnic Serbs " is not very neutral; could be improved by rewording: Not done
    • "In [x], in the prelude to the Kosovowar (?), the extremist Muslim magazine Vox provocatively published suggestions..."
    • This controversial statements needs another citation.

This article is of good quality and can definitely be promoted to GA status once these small issues have been addressed. I will verify using the provided and other sources the information given over the next several days. LT910001 (talk) 08:22, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

Hi, thanks for picking up this review so quickly. I've addressed your comments with this edit The bit about Vox will (hopefully) be resolved by the two users on the talk page so this review can be wrapped up. Regards, 23 editor (talk) 20:34, 23 October 2013 (UTC)

Thank you. The issue with Vox is contentious and will need to be resolved before this article can be promoted. Have updated the assessment table, and with any luck this review will be finished soon. LT910001 (talk) 22:54, 24 October 2013 (UTC)
I'm going on a Wikibreak for several months and won't be able to finish this review. I'm putting it on hold and have requested another reviewer to conclude this review. If I might be so bold, one possible solution to this issue may simply to say "Magazine Vox described..." and leave it at that, without characterising the magazine. I wish you well, LT910001 (talk) 05:07, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
To the continuing reviewer: I have been awaiting a NPOV of change to the "Vox" phrase as noted above. LT910001 (talk) 05:07, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

Review by Quadell[edit]

I'm willing to take over the GAN review. The article has been stable for around 3 days now. I'll look it over in the next couple of days. – Quadell (talk) 18:55, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

  • Thanks Quadell. I've been Wiki-ing a semi-quiescent state and although I'd like to complete these reviews, I can't guarantee that I'll be able to respond in a reasonable time-frame. LT910001 (talk) 01:56, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
    • No problem, LT910001. Often, reviews benefit from a second pair of eyes anyway. Enjoy your wikibreak! – Quadell (talk) 15:23, 4 November 2013 (UTC)

Regarding my reviewing style, issues I identify below will be prepended by the number of the relevant GA criterion. As they are resolved, I will cross out the issue number. Comments that are not actionable requirements are not prepended.

  • The stability concerns seem to have abated, thankfully. (I think it was wise to remove the section on the board game: it is guaranteed to provoke edit wars, it uses too much wording from the source, and besides, the magazine article is not very notable.)
  • 2b The first cite in the "Construction" section is right after "ten-foot high". The previous two sentences about the tower's construction (mentioned in the previous bullet) need a source. (Judah, p. 279, would work.)
  • 2b Is there a source for the claim that tens of thousands of Yugoslav children visited the monument?
  • The Merrill source is only used to support one sentence, but if you wanted, it could be used to support much of the "Background" section as well.
  • Something is unclear to me. The "Construction" section says that Hurshid Pasha ordered that the heads be sent to the sultan (presumably in Istanbul), and that "The Turks then built" the tower from the skulls. If the skulls were sent to Istanbul, what did they build the tower with? Does this mean the heads were sent without the skulls? (I see that one source, Judah, says Hurshid Pasha "had the heads ... skinned, stuffed and sent to the sultan. And then ... he [presumably Hurshid Pasha] built the Skull Tower." Another source, Merrill, doesn't mention the sent heads.)
  • 1a Be very careful to avoid close paraphrasing. There are a three places (two minor and one more serious) that should be reworded in order to use as little of the source's wording as possible. Both use Judah's "The Serbs". I checked all other book sources, and found no other cases of close paraphrasing, besides the examples listed below.
    • Judah says "Turks swarmed into the Serbian trenches", and the article says "Turkish soldiers swarmed their trenches". "Swarmed" is arguably a POV word anyway, and should be rewritten to avoid close paraphrasing.
    • Judah says the tower "did become a place of pilgrimage." The article calls it "a place of pilgrimage for Serbs." That could be seen as the author's characteristic wording, so why not rephrase as a "pilgrimage site" or a "pilgrimage destination"?
    • Judah says "one other in a glass case reputed to be that of Sindelic himself". The article says "reputed to be that of Sindelic himself, enclosed in a glass case" (in the lead) and "in a glass case reputed to be that of Sindelic himself" (in the body). It is in a glass case, but you could also say "behind glass" or "in a glass container" or something if you choose. But more importantly, phrases like "reputed" and "Sindelic himself" are characteristic of the author, and should definitely be reworded in your own words.
  • 1b More than half of the "Significance and portrayal in Balkan culture" section is was an extended quote by a French poet. It's pretty, but in my opinion, that's too much quoted material for such a short article. I removed a little of the narrative description to shorten it, and I removed the "Afterwards, Lamartine declared" sentence, since it's just one Frenchman's opinion. I think that solves the problem. If you don't like my solution, feel free to reworded it a different way... just so long as one poet's impression is not given undue weight.

GA review – see WP:WIAGA for criteria

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    A. Prose is clear and concise, without copyvios, or spelling and grammar errors:
    All issues have been resolved.
    B. MoS compliance for lead, layout, words to watch, fiction, and lists:
    No problems.
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    A. Has an appropriate reference section:
    The end sections are great.
    B. Citation to reliable sources where necessary:
    All issues have been resolved.
    C. No original research:
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    A. Major aspects:
    B. Focused:
  4. Is it neutral?
    Fair representation without bias:
    No longer a problem.
  5. Is it stable?
    No edit wars, etc:
    I don't think it's a problem any longer.
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    A. Images are tagged with their copyright status, and valid fair use rationales are provided for non-free content:
    Images are all legitimately free.
    B. Images are provided if possible and are relevant to the topic, and have suitable captions:
  7. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:
    This passes all our GA criteria, and I'm happy to promote it. – Quadell (talk) 23:19, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Hi, Quadell. Thanks for picking up this review so quickly. I've addressed your comments with this this edit . All the best, 23 editor (talk) 21:42, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Delightful. It's been great working with you. All the best, – Quadell (talk) 23:19, 5 November 2013 (UTC)