Talk:Startling Stories

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Featured article Startling Stories is a featured article; it (or a previous version of it) has been identified as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community. Even so, if you can update or improve it, please do so.
Main Page trophy This article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on April 25, 2014.
February 8, 2011 Featured article candidate Promoted
WikiProject Science Fiction (Rated FA-class, Mid-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Science Fiction, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of science fiction 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.
Featured article FA  This article has been rated as FA-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Mid  This article has been rated as Mid-importance on the project's importance scale.
WikiProject Magazines (Rated FA-class, Low-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Magazines, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of magazines 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.
Featured article FA  This article has been rated as FA-Class on the project's quality scale.
 Low  This article has been rated as Low-importance on the project's importance scale.
See WikiProject Magazines' writing guide for tips on how to improve this article.

Copyright notes[edit]

Per a search in this copyright renewal file, there are no issues with copyright renewed before 1950, nor any cover art renewed, though many stories are copyrighted. Per a search here, all issues from November 1950 onwards are copyrighted. So the first 64 issues are out of copyright except for specific stories, and the last 35 issues are copyrighted. Mike Christie (talklibrary) 01:34, 6 January 2011 (UTC)

This is incorrect; I've searched again recently and every year I've looked for so far has had the copyright renewed. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 10:19, 15 June 2016 (UTC)

To do[edit]

  • Need to clarify the issues with editorship at the end -- Ewald says Samalman and Kastle together for the last four and quotes Kastle from Reginald. Also need to check the issues themselves.
    Ewald says: "Alexander Samalman and Herbert D. Kastle, Winter - Fall 1955, last four issues." He adds that in Reginald vol 2 p. 957 Kastle "claims to have 'officiated over the death of Startling Stories'". Mike Christie (talklibrary) 01:45, 11 January 2011 (UTC)
    Tuck says the last four issues were edited by Samalman; so does Malcolm Edwards in the Nicholls.
    Ashley in Transformations says Raines, then Kastle; he's the leading expert and that's the most recent source, so I will use that. Might need to add a note. Also checked the magazines themselves; the indicia and masthead do not name the editor for these issues.
  • Add a note on Bergey based on Jan 1950 cover and note in Di Fate's Infinite Worlds.
    Note that "gravity-defying" can be sourced from Infinite Worlds p. 32 if necessary, though I think the multi-image caption doesn't need separate sourcing.
  • Prose
  • Lead
  • There are a couple of strings of three or four citations together; those can probably be reduced.
  • Scan covers -- need a copy of a sober-looking post-font-change Bergey -- maybe the upside girl in the space ship with the spacemen outside with the cutting torch?

-- Mike Christie (talklibrary) 04:10, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

Excessive fair use tag[edit]

An editor has placed a tag indicating possible excessive fair use. There are six fair use images of magazine covers in the article at the moment. I think all six can be justified, as follows.

  • January 1950: specific commentary about the artwork on that cover by an sf art historian
  • May 1953: illustrates two stylistic changes, both of which are commented on in the article -- the typeface and the more realistic artwork
  • Fall 1944; Winter 1946; March 1950; July 1950: these illustrate the cumulative effect of multiple stereotypes in sf illustration at that time. There is substantial commentary on these stereotypes, and because it is the cumulative effect that is being commented on, multiple examples are appropriate. Each cover illustrates a specific stereotype and there is specific commentary associated with it.

All of the commentary is sourced to reliable sources. I'll wait a month or so to see if there are comments. If nobody objects I'll remove the tag at that time. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 11:29, 31 July 2011 (UTC)

Issue numbers[edit]

Why are the issues numbers in sets of 3? I can imagine that it might be sensible to number annually with a "volume" and "issue", but that isn't what is shown. -- (talk)

There's nothing in the sources about this, but I can tell you that making the volume numbering match the years was not a particularly common approach, though it did happen. See the volume/number charts for some of the other sf magazines for comparison: Fantastic Adventures, Amazing Stories, Planet Stories, Thrilling Wonder Stories, or Famous Fantastic Mysteries. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 11:07, 28 April 2014 (UTC)

Asimov anecdote in the "Merwin and after" section[edit]

I attempted to clarify this but I'm not sure how a good a job it is, as it seems to take focus off the magazine. But the original rendition made Asimov sound like the usual prima donna artist whose every word is inviolate and might often get furious at editors if they dared ask for changes. The gist of the Asimov anecdote is that he was basically led on by Merwin and, having labored on and completed a novel with Merwin's foreknowledge and approval, had the rug pulled out from under him. Asimov was a pro who often made changes at editorial request as long as everything seemed to be fair and square.

But this is about a story that did not appear in Startling, after all, so arguably doesn't even belong in the article. A lot of stories did not appear in Startling. ;) Why detail this one when the choice is between simplifying Asimov into mischaracterization or getting the story right but taking the focus off the magazine? If someone can hit the happy medium better than I, go for it. Otherwise, perhaps the anecdote should just be removed entirely. -- (talk) 19:05, 29 April 2014 (UTC)

Or, actually, a better approach might be to mention it but simply say that this famous novel almost appeared in the magazine but did not due to the change in editorial style from Astounding-ish to Amazing-ish and leave Asimov's and Merwin's personalities and specific actions out entirely as the point is simply the magazine change and the "what could have been" aspect of the novel. -- (talk) 19:12, 29 April 2014 (UTC)

I like the anecdote but I think you might be right that this isn't the best place for it. Perhaps it could be used in Pebble in the Sky, and a reduced version left here, as you suggest? Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 22:52, 29 April 2014 (UTC)

Removed gallery[edit]

I'd like to restore the gallery of non-free images recently removed by Hullaballoo Wolfowitz. The issue of whether this was excessive use of non-free images was raised a couple of sections above this; I gave some justifications there. Bergey's covers are unusually iconic within the field and are reproduced along with specific commentary from the sources (which could be expanded if necessary). The images are too small to be commercially useful. I think they should be restored. I would not argue similarly for multiple fair-use images to illustrate the other sf pulps; this is a special case. I'd like to hear from other editors on this. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 02:14, 7 July 2015 (UTC)

No response yet, so I've reverted the removal of the gallery. If anyone still thinks it should go, let's discuss it here. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 03:25, 8 July 2015 (UTC)
+1. Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 03:37, 8 July 2015 (UTC)it
Doesn't this fall under fair use? Or does the WP licence preclude using non-free images, since it also allows commercial reuse? (I've no objection to keep, but let's not jam ourselves up over it...) TREKphiler any time you're ready, Uhura 16:07, 8 July 2015 (UTC)
Fair use in this context normally means that you have to be discussing the merits of the images in question. Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 20:26, 8 July 2015 (UTC)

Hullaballoo Wolfowitz has removed the gallery again; I've asked him to comment here. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 20:23, 23 April 2016 (UTC)

Whatever went by last year slips my memory. Briefly, these images are used demonstratively, to indicate that textual content is accurate, and that doesn't meet NFCC standards when the relevant text is sufficiently clear, as it is here. If this were an article about science fiction art more generally, such covers would probably be appropriate -- except that they're almost certainly replaceable with examples from the thousand+ free sf magazine covers I uploaded to Commons a few months back. The Big Bad Wolfowitz (aka Hullaballoo). Treated like dirt by administrators since 2006. (talk) 21:16, 23 April 2016 (UTC)
Well, covers from other magazines aren't going to help in this case -- the context is specifically Bergey's influence on public perception of science fiction via his covers for Startling, and I don't think any of those are public domain. As I understand it, the relevant requirement is that the image(s) should "significantly increase readers' understanding of the article topic, and its omission would be detrimental to that understanding". I don't think a reader that reads the accompanying text will get nearly as clear an understanding of what the cliches of sf art were at the time; certainly the text would recall similar images to the mind of a reader who'd already seen such things, but that doesn't help a reader who has not. And just one or two is not enough -- it's the range of cliches that is being illustrated here.
I think it's also relevant that across all the pulp sf magazine articles, this is the only article to have such a gallery -- I'm not making the claim that a gallery is needed in every case, but it's a useful tool to give the reader in at least one magazine article, and this is the best one to use. I think the gallery should be reinstated. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 12:07, 24 April 2016 (UTC)
Hullaballoo Wolfowitz: can you comment? I don't want to restore the gallery without further discussion, but at least one other editor (above, last year) agreed that it should stay. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 10:54, 25 April 2016 (UTC)
No response after a day, so I've restored the gallery. If Hullabaloo Wolfowitz (or anyone else) still thinks it should be deleted, let's discuss here. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 11:35, 26 April 2016 (UTC)