User:Wasted Time R

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So named after the Eagles' striking "Wasted Time" and "Wasted Time (Reprise)" from Hotel California. And a metaphor for WP editing?

This user is greater than the sum of their userboxes.

That was then, this is now ...[edit]

Still active, but not at the levels of before and with a focus shifted onto different goals.

Why it is or isn't a waste, Part 3[edit]

70,000+This user has made more than 70,000 contributions to Wikipedia.

Advice for new editors[edit]

Look before you leap. Really. Study the subculture here until you have a feel for what works and what doesn't.

Advice for editing history articles[edit]

Read books. And not just the random pages you find online in Amazon or Google; whole books, or at least whole chapters thereof, in a library.

Advice for editing political articles[edit]


A's and faves[edit]

Not that I'm not still minding all of these ...

5 FA articles: I've been the main writer of:

3 I've made a significant contribution (#2 editor) to: Nancy ReaganSaxbe fixZoo TV Tour
I've made fewer but important contributions to: Pat NixonCity of Blinding LightsTemple Israel (Memphis, Tennessee) • maybe others?

1 MILHIST A-class articles I've been the main writer of: John S. McCain, Jr.

48 GA articles I've been the main writer of:

3 I've been a significant contributor (#2 editor) towards: Cornell PlantationsCynthia LennonVaillancourt Fountain
Also 4 GA that are now FA and thus off this list.

144 DYK appearances related to new or 5x expanded articles: 4th of July, Asbury Park (Sandy)Why Baby WhyU2 360° Tour‎Tony Sings the Great Hits of Today!World Conference on Human RightsCarolina in My MindI'm Your Captain (Closer to Home)Jay WeinbergLatinoJustice PRLDEFUnited States House Permanent Select Committee on Aging‎Hematological Cancer Research Investment and Education ActQueens Borough HallRacing in the StreetGood Shepherd (song)Citizen ActionBillboard Touring AwardsAssumption Preparatory SchoolAutomobile Manufacturers AssociationUnited States Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human NeedsRunning to Stand StillQuadrennial Diplomacy and Development ReviewUltraviolet (Light My Way)‎Stranded (Haiti Mon Amour)‎Sweet Thursday (album)‎Arizona SB1070 (failed GAN) • Border Governors ConferenceThe American IsraeliteWaitin' on a Sunny DayYoungstown (song)NannygateEnough Is Enough (organization)‎United States Ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and AgricultureUnited States Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights CouncilSpying on United Nations leaders by United States diplomatsTax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act of 2010Chiang Ching-kuo FoundationMain Street ConnectAuditorio Monte do GozoMonte do GozoMitt Romney presidential campaign, 2012Heather ZichalBaby Don't GoBudget Control Act of 2011‎Jerome J. Shestack‎Alabama HB 56New World Center1111 Lincoln RoadAmerican Laboratory TheatreDavid J. Lane (ambassador)Harold A. LafountHurricane Sandy: Coming TogetherGod Bless America (charity album)American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012My Beloved WorldGo East, Young ManInternational Conference on HollywoodismMorleigh SteinbergVaillancourt FountainMichelle NunnSecondary School Mathematics Curriculum Improvement StudyContinuing Appropriations Act, 2014Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace StudiesArnold A. SaltzmanBipartisan Budget Act of 2013Icy Strait PointHuna Totem CorporationCenter of International StudiesUnited States House Select Committee on Events Surrounding the 2012 Terrorist Attack in BenghaziKeith Harper (lawyer)Hard ChoicesKiswe MobileAdvanced Computer TechniquesAssociation of British Secretaries in AmericaNetsmart TechnologiesMarvin KitmanNeil W. ChamberlainE. Wight BakkeYale Labor and Management CenterHillary Clinton presidential campaign, 2016Dear Socks, Dear BuddyAn Invitation to the White HouseDansk Datamatik CenterDDC-ITartan LaboratoriesAzraq refugee campMitt Romney's March 3 speechDwight L. Bush, Sr.Makila JamesYale Institute of International StudiesFrederick Sherwood DunnTony Bennett at the Talk of the TownElectradaHughes DynamicsInformatics GeneralTrapped (Jimmy Cliff song)Bob Wills Is Still the KingLos Angeles Times–Washington Post News ServiceBartell GroupPaul Y. HammondFirst Day HikesUnix System LaboratoriesNovell BrainShareWisconsin School (diplomatic history)Walter LaFeberGustavus Myers Center for the Study of Bigotry and Human RightsGreater London GroupWilliam A. RobsonPrinceton Shopping CenterThe Book of Gutsy WomenCaldera InternationalSCO ForumMerchantBridgeXinuosVisionwareIXI LimitedHCR CorporationSystime Computers LtdParallel Computers, Inc.Unix ExpoState Department Panel of Consultants on DisarmamentWilliam L. BordenPriscilla Johnson McMillanJames R. ShepleyChurch Center for the United NationsArnold WolfersLewis Strauss (due to GA) • Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021Mahanoy Area School District v. B.L.Canopy GroupSanta Cruz OperationTRW VidarChorus Systèmes SADay-TimerNational War FundNew York City Tribune1978 New York City newspaper strikeThird session of the United Nations General AssemblyIndigo SwingJoining ForcesConcurrent Computer CorporationBrassey'sHelen HadsellBiden FoundationBetts, Hall, Leavell and Trucks

Wikimedia Commons logoThis user has a userpage on Wikimedia Commons.

Beyond these, I've created and/or been the major author of literally hundreds and hundreds of Wikipedia articles. Some of my (once, sometimes still, sometimes lost) favorites:

Started towards GA-level quality but really need completion/returning to: Rod StewartJames TaylorShe Loves You

Articles that look good in parts but I don't think I've fully captured the subject on: Legal Services Corporation

Articles that I think I'm still #1 editor on by frequency that I was not very (or at all) happy with state of (and in most cases have long since stopped looking at): The AnimalsThe RascalsBruce SpringsteenWhitewater controversyJohn S. McCain, Sr.Rudy GiulianiVictoria Reggie KennedyDixie ChicksThe Allman Brothers BandBob SegerElton John • and others I'm no doubt forgetting

Advice for self[edit]

Awake, you sleepers, from your sleep! Rouse yourselves, you slumberers ... who are wasting your years in vain pursuits that neither profit nor save.

Ten Years On, two different perspectives[edit]

Ten years!

Yikes. My first edit on WP (as an IP, this account came a few months later) was ten years ago today. What to say? Came across a Chinese fortune cookie paper I had saved the other day: "If you put up with small annoyances, you will gain great results." Decent advice in general. And, allowing for sometimes larger values of 'small' and lesser values of 'great', a pretty good description of writing WP articles.

Not a waste if I'm an 'influencer' or 'protector'?[edit]


Initially was not sure I really believed in this metaphor, but ... some years later and after 42 of them, it's nice to feel appreciated ...

Minor Barnstar.png The Minor Barnstar
For making minor edits to improve the quality in the Il Divo article I award you this Barnstar Rosameliamartinez 09:10, 12 March 2006 (UTC)

Keep up the good job with the many concert [tour] articles. I'd award one of those stars, but there's some silly administrative debate on the appropriate star to hand out for WP:MUSIC contributions. --Madchester 21:20, 7 August 2006 (UTC)

Editors Barnstar.png The Editor's Barnstar
I, Eseymour, award you this Editor's Barnstar for your fine work in leading the dismantling of Hillary Rodham Clinton controversies and integrating the content into appropriate separate articles. Awarded on the 13th of November, 2007.

Barnstar of Humour3.png The Barnstar of Good Humor
Thanks for the laugh from the Britney Spears comment at WP:GAR. I’m envious that your life is so carefree as to allow you to place concern on train wrecks troubled pop stars. ;) Ɛƚƈơƅƅơƚɑ talk 17:54, 7 January 2008 (UTC)

Tireless Contributor Barnstar.gif The Wasted Time Barnstar
For putting up with all the garbage that goes along with political articles and for being able to keep cool for 3 years without running away like many of us have considered. I will waste some of my time to give you this waste of time barnstar. STX 19:23, 6 February 2008 (UTC)

Tireless Contributor Barnstar.gif The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
This barnstar is for your tireless efforts in creating and improving the Hillary Clinton article, please keep up the good work. Thanks! Dwilso talk 04:04, 18 March 2008 (UTC)

Resilient Barnstar.png The Resilient Barnstar
For being able to listen to criticism, and improve in your ability for NPOV writing a very informative section on the Cultural and political image of Hillary Clinton. Kudos!! ≈ jossi ≈ (talk) 03:11, 20 March 2008 (UTC)

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
To Wasted Time R, on the occasion of press coverage of your wiki work. Few have represented Wikipedia so well and at its highest level of excellence. As others have said, well done. Congratulations! -Susanlesch (talk) 00:33, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

SpecialBarnstar.png The Special Barnstar
To Wasted Time R on a very special occasion, in recognition of outstanding contributions to Wikipedia. Susanlesch (talk) 02:40, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

Starhalf.png The Half Barnstar
For incredible collaboration to get John McCain up to GA status. Keep up the good work! Eustress (talk) 19:37, 18 April 2008 (UTC)

Working Man's Barnstar.png The Working Wikipedian's Barnstar
For going above and beyond the call of duty to deal with the Hillary Rodham Clinton FAC when the nominator didn't follow up. Ealdgyth - Talk 14:41, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

Tireless Contributor Barnstar.gif The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
For this, I, J.delanoygabsanalyze, hereby award you this Tireless Contributer Barnstar. I don't think I have ever seen such dedication anywhere, let alone on Wikipedia. Congratulations, and keep up the good work! J.delanoygabsanalyze 03:16, 1 June 2008 (UTC)

Barnstar-United States National Merit.png United States barnstar of national merit
I award you the barnstar of national merit in recognition of your ceaseless contributions of excellence in the United States Senator John McCain article and biographical series. —

  Justmeherenow (  ) 19:58, 18 August 2008 (UTC)

Working Man's Barnstar.png The Working Wikipedian's Barnstar
For your participation in the Spring 2009 GAN backlog elimination drive, in which you reviewed 5 articles, you are granted this barnstar! Great work! —The participants on the Spring 2009 GAN backlog elimination drive 21:24, 31 March 2009 (UTC)

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
For all of your hard effort in getting War Tour up to GA which, if it is indeed the first Tour article to make it to that level, is an accomplishment to be proud of. MelicansMatkin (talk) 00:03, 14 April 2009 (UTC)

SpecialBarnstar.png The Special Barnstar
For bringing the Running to Stand Still article up to WP:NSONGS standard, and then some... --Merbabu (talk) 23:14, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

Barnstar of Humour3.png The Barnstar of Good Humor
For commendable patience and tolerance in the face of his GA reviewer's continually missed deadlines and inane complaints about phrasing, I award Wasted Time R this barnstar of good humo(u)r. Steve Smith (talk) 10:43, 4 December 2009 (UTC)

Compass barnstar.png The Guidance Barnstar
Awarded to User:Wasted Time R Appreciation for splitting that "time" between your own excellence in editing without forgetting about those of us still plodding along. Leahtwosaints (talk) 01:34, 29 March 2010 (UTC)

Team Barnstar.png The Teamwork Barnstar
For you excellent work on the Arizona SB1070 article, repeatedly editing and contributing with other users. Theo10011 (talk) 19:01, 3 May 2010 (UTC)

Original Barnstar.png The Original Barnstar
Thank you for helping me out three and a half years ago when I did not completely understand how things worked. You and User:JayJasper are tied as the most neutral wikipedia editors. I am proud to have collaborated with y'all.Southern Texas (talk) 22:40, 9 December 2010 (UTC)

Barnstar of Diligence.png The Barnstar of Diligence
For extraordinary scrutiny, precision, and community service. Cheers! —Eustress talk 22:02, 7 February 2012 (UTC)

Mexican Barnstar National Merit.svg The Barnstar of National Merit
This tricolor-beribboned barnstar is awarded for the recipient's even-handedness in addressing nation-of-origin issues on Wikipedia. (And, by the way, cogratulations on the George W. Romney bio's having become an article especially featured on Wikipedia!)
this WikiAward was given to Wasted Time R by Hodgdon's secret garden (talk) on 23:37, 14 February 2012 (UTC)

Editors Barnstar Hires.png The Editor's Barnstar
A great article on Lenore Romney. Congrats on the GA and may we see many more!! ♦ Dr. Blofeld 22:17, 3 May 2012 (UTC)

Special Barnstar Hires.png The Special Barnstar
Thanks Wasted Time R! You assisted in various ways on the Paul McCartney FAC. Thank you! Without your help McCartney would not be a FA today! ~ GabeMc (talk|contribs) 21:39, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Barnstar of Diligence Hires.png The Barnstar of Diligence
For your work on Political positions of Mitt Romney, where you put your nose to the grindstone and just kept on fixing the article, even while the rest of us squabbled endlessly. Still-24-45-42-125 (talk) 14:51, 30 July 2012 (UTC)

WikiDefender Barnstar Hires.png The Defender of the Wiki Barnstar
I'm beginning to see why they call this "silly season". I've noticed the upheaval going on with many of our politics-related articles, and I'm impressed with the calm, respectful, and neutral way in which you deal with the POV coming from both sides. I can't say I envy your position, but I have great respect for the work you're doing. ~Adjwilley (talk) 21:12, 11 September 2012 (UTC)

Team Barnstar Hires.png The Teamwork Barnstar
You, Anythingyouwant and Gabe deserve any one of several barnstars for your work at Mitt Romney's FAC, but I chose this one because of your tireless effort cooperating with the other two in resolving the many many issues that had to be tackled. Congratulations on helping get the article to where it is hamiltonstone (talk) 00:53, 2 November 2012 (UTC)

SpecialBarnstar.png The Special Barnstar
for such careful attention to the sources in reviewing DYK nominations, specifically in regard to Ved Vejen. With gratitude. -- Ipigott (talk) 18:55, 2 February 2013 (UTC)

Kindness Barnstar Hires.png The Random Acts of Kindness Barnstar
Thanks for all your efforts and for your time. Miss Bono (talk) 17:21, 21 March 2013 (UTC)

U2 barnstar.JPG The U2 Barnstar
I hereby award you the U2 Barnstar for your efforts in helping Wikiproject U2. Congratulations! For your Contributions on Morleigh Steinberg's Article. Enjoy it  Miss Bono (zootalk) 14:06, 19 April 2013 (UTC)

Tireless Contributor Barnstar Hires.gif The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
i don't know if this is the right bstar to say thank you for all you are doing for Morleigh Steinberg's article... but THANKS A LOT Miss Bono (zootalk) 12:17, 19 June 2013 (UTC)

GA barnstar.png The Good Article Barnstar
For your contributions to bring George McGovern to Good Article status. With 18,000 views a month, this article serves as many readers as ten average GAs put together. Thanks for going after the big topics--it's hugely appreciated! -- Khazar2 (talk) 12:38, 7 August 2013 (UTC)

Team Barnstar Hires.png The Teamwork Barnstar
Thanks for lending your talent to the Sgt. Pepper peer review and FAC. Because of some wonderful teamwork during the last month, the article is among the best on Wikipedia today. I couldn't have done it alone, and I hope that someday I can return the kindness and generosity that I've enjoyed during this process. Cheers! GabeMc (talk|contribs) 16:22, 23 May 2014 (UTC)

GA barnstar.png The Good Article Barnstar
For nominating Systime Computers for GA. TheEpicGhosty (talk) 13:54, 28 October 2020 (UTC)

Original Barnstar Hires.png The Original Barnstar
For saving Lights (musician) at GAN! Raymie (tc) 01:37, 10 November 2020 (UTC)

Tireless Contributor Barnstar.gif The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
Thank you for conducting 10 reviews in the October 2020 GAN Backlog drive. Your work helped us to reduce the backlog by over 48%. Regards, Eddie891 Talk Work 14:45, 19 November 2020 (UTC)

DYK Barnstar shiny Hires.svg The DYK Barnstar
Thanks for nominating Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 for DYK, and for including me and the other major contributors. You led the charge on this, and it hit the front page today. Much appreciated. –Novem Linguae (talk) 20:13, 13 January 2021 (UTC)

Compass barnstar.png The Guidance Barnstar
For your thoughtful review at the GA nomination for Kathy Karpan. You are thorough with your feedback, but more importantly, you treat every interaction with fellow Wikipedians as an opportunity to educate and to provide helpful advice. Even an experienced editor like myself has a lot to learn from you! Edge3 (talk) 07:13, 8 March 2021 (UTC)

Working Man's Barnstar.png The Working Wikipedian's Barnstar
Thank you for completing 5 reviews in the March 2021 backlog drive. Your work helped us reduce the backlog by over 52%. Best, Eddie891 Talk Work 13:48, 21 April 2021 (UTC)

SpecialBarnstar.png The Special Barnstar
Thank you and @Edge3: for helping to get Kathy Karpan to GA status while I was away from Wikipedia due to a friend's death. Jon698 (talk) 18:32, 18 May 2021 (UTC)

Tireless Contributor Barnstar Hires.gif The Tireless Contributor Barnstar
For your thorough review of Eric Anthony Abrahams and other high quality GA reviews. Eddie891 Talk Work 12:11, 22 July 2021 (UTC)

Working Man's Barnstar Hires.png The Working Wikipedian's Barnstar
For your valued work in the July 2021 GAN Backlog Drive, which, in a single month, helped to reduce the backlog by nearly 50%. --Usernameunique (talk) 05:30, 19 September 2021 (UTC)

A Barnstar!
The Alaskan Barnstar

Thank you for your edits to Alaska politicians. I noticed your edits to Mike Gravel over the years. Mycranthebigman (talk) 19:58, 2 May 2022 (UTC)

Early history[edit]

Starting in January 2005 I made around 1,000 edits as anons User: and User:, never feeling committed to the idea that WP converges to quality or that anyone reads these articles. I'm still not sure on either account ... a page view count mechanism would be really helpful. In May 2005 I began using this account; within a little more than a month I had another 1,000 edits. Too much!?

2008 update ... a page count tool is finally here!!

Why it's a waste, Part 1[edit]

Well, with even more time in the past, this below is an example of how WP has improved. All of the problems mentioned here can and do exist, and can sometimes drive editors crazy, but over time it is also possible to maintain stable, high-quality articles, even on (some) political subjects. And the best-selling music artists article mentioned below has gotten a lot better.

The biggest problems in WP articles, especially those dealing with popular culture:

  1. Excessive detail in the wrong places, such as an article's intro
  2. Inconsistent levels of detail within an article or across a set of articles
  3. Just plain too much detail

Regarding convergence to quality, I think it can happen for articles on subjects important enough to warrant attention but obscure enough to not get too much attention. Political subjects or contentious history, forget it. Popular culture that attracts a lot of people, forget it. Even if you get these kinds of articles right, someone else will come along and mess it up. Even if you and a bunch of other editors hammer out differences and get it right, in a short while other people will come, ignore your agreements, and mess it all up. Even if you watchlist these articles and fix the mess ups as they happen, eventually you'll get tired, the hordes won't, and down it will all go.

Regarding if anyone is reading, one sanity check is to Google a subject and to see how high the WP article shows up. If it's not in the first two pages of results, chances are good no one's going to find it. I have a feeling a large subset of WP articles are only read by editors, not by "real" readers looking for information.

The first article I ever edited is also just about the worst article in Wikipedia, List of best-selling music artists. Missing or bogus data, pov agendas, pure vandalism, heavy churn, perpetually under VfD. The edit was this: [1]. I picked this article because I could tell it was pretty worthless, so if I blundered it totally, no harm done. The same still applies.

Proper usage in music articles[edit]

Quotes and italics[edit]

Popular music article writers, please memorize Wikipedia:Music#Albums, bands, and songs. Albums go in italics, songs go in double quotes, bands are just proper nouns, and only the first reference to the title subject of an article (and any alternate names of it) go in bold. How hard is this to understand? Yet there are jillions of music articles that get this wrong in every which way.

Tour names[edit]

As specified in Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Music#Popular music, concert tour names are being done throughout Wikipedia as regular proper nouns, not italics or quotes. See Talk:Zoo TV Tour#Tour name conventions for the original rationale.


Another common fault is placing punctuation inside the double quotes used for song titles, such as:

Her biggest hits were "Fool to Love," "Cry Every Day," and "Tears for Years."

Take a look at Wikipedia:Manual of Style#Quotation marks. Song titles are clearly the case where the punctuation is not "part of the sense" of the thing being quoted, and therefore should be outside the double quotes. Thus the above should be:

Her biggest hits were "Fool to Love", "Cry Every Day", and "Tears for Years".

I've seen more than a few cases where people make the same mistake in their coding with italics:

Her most popular albums included ''No Love Supreme,'' ''Sorrow Tomorrow,'' and ''Love is Pain.''

which is really ridiculous – do the titles on the real album covers include commas and periods?

It is true that other publications (New York Times, Rolling Stone) put punctuation inside the double quotes in the first case, but Wikipedia standards are clear that you don't; see WP:MOSLQ for another statement to this effect.

Why it's a waste, Part 2[edit]

Sunset at Huntington Beach.jpg

Too much wasted time has taken its toll. Have wiped my 1000-item watchlist and only put back a few obligations and obscure things I care about. Edits should be few(er), once I finish some things I started.

From December 2006. Didn't work.

Why Trivia sections are bad[edit]

Here's another example of where WP works – back in 2005–06 trivia sections drove me nuts, but standards were drawn up, editors imitated one another in getting rid of them, and now it's rare to see any.

All sorts of articles, mostly popular culture ones but some other kinds as well, have picked up sections named Trivia. This is not a good idea!

Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, not a catchbin for every factoid about a subject, as some non-Wikipedia popular culture web pages are. Wikipedia articles should have a cohesiveness of content. If a "Trivia" item is really important, it should be put into one of the mainline sections of text in the appropriate spot. If a "Trivia" item is somewhat important, it can often be pushed down into a subordinate article (such as an album or song article for a musical artist, rather than the main article). If a "Trivia" item isn't important, it should be left out of any article! It's that simple.

Trivia sections are the lazy way out; they represent no organisation, no structure, no cohesion. They should all be gotten rid of, something I've tried to do when I've encountered them in articles I've worked on.

See Wikipedia:WikiProject Music/MUSTARD#Trivia for a guideline against Trivia sections in music articles.

And Wikipedia:Avoid trivia sections in articles for a guideline against Trivia sections in all articles.

Why it's mostly a waste, Part 4[edit]

Content of Wikipedia, November 2007.citation needed HT:User talk:JzG

Well, this is a bit harsh, but you get the idea.

/trackarea sandboxgateway