User talk:Amandajm/Archives/2013/October

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I have only intermittent Internet access because I am travelling to the north coast. Will be back at the beginning of next week. Sorry to hear you are ill. (talk) 11:59, 20 September 2013 (UTC)


Hi -- I thought I'd post here, rather than at Talk:Middle Ages, because I really wanted to suggest something to you, rather than to the whole group of editors there. It's been a frustrating discussion for all concerned, and I think it would be good if we could come up with a way to reach a decision on what to do about the lead image.

It seems to me that there are two largely independent issues. (1) Is an image of a reproduction inherently unacceptable? and (2) Is there a better image than the current one, which happens to be an image of a reproduction? The support/oppose sections that I set up were really intended to address (2), because if we can find an image which everyone prefers, we can skip (for now, at least) question (1).

I think you should try to get a definite consensus on (1) if you want to proceed, as I don't think any resolution of the current discussion on the helmets will address your real concern. That means asking for editors to express themselves in support or opposition to some statement which, in your view, encapsulates the problem: "Images of reproduction artefacts are always to be regarded as inferior to images of genuine artefacts in illustrating history articles unless there is specific informational value that can be obtained only from the image of the reproduction", or whatever best encapsulates your view. If you want the scope to be just that article, then ask for consensus there; if you want it to be established for all history articles, ask at that WikiProject (and of course post a note at Talk:Middle Ages. You would probably want to structure it as an RfC unless you got overwhelming support for one side of the question or the other.

There are other things you could do at this point, such as post notes at relevant WikiProjects asking for more people to comment, but I think you'd be better off defining the question to be discussed first. Once there is a broad consensus on that point, question (2) should become much simpler.

I hope this is helpful -- I'd be happy to discuss this further, if you like. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 21:48, 22 September 2013 (UTC)

Mike Christie, Thanks for your suggestions.
User:AmateurEditor wrote:
"Mike, insisting on a specific alternatives as part of deciding whether or not the current image should change introduces a bias in favor of the status quo. For one, it presumes that there will be an image used, even though the MOS suggests that, in cases where no single image can be representative, not having one at all can be the best option. It also presumes that a single image image will be used, rather than multiple ones. And since there is no consensus on a replacement candidate as of yet, those opposed to the current image will be split among those who favor a specific alternative and those who do not, which could easily give the false impression of a plurality or even a majority in favor of the current image when a majority may actually oppose it. It may also shift the emphasis of the discussion toward the aesthetic, and even those opposed to the current image agree that it is striking aesthetically.
The point made by User:Curly Turkey earlier is an important one. We first need to agree on the framework of the discussion to avoid talking at cross-purposes and getting nowhere. For example: first, do we, as a group, believe the current image is acceptable for the lead, or not. If so, we are done. But if not, only then should we discuss the alternatives, which include a single replacement image, multiple images, no image at all, an infobox, etc." AmateurEditor 00:50, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
As User:AmateurEditor stated, suggesting a different image has simply distracted from the point of the argument.
However, the problem arose in the first place because three generally agreeable editors could not agree.
As I see it, the continued use of a lead picture which has received so much criticism is just plain foolish.
The remaining people who keep trying to sort me out over the issue, need to turn their focus a different direction:
Is there a problem with the continued use of the reproduction image? There surely is!
  • The problem is that one editor has called its use unethical and a breach of accepted practice in using reproduction objects.
  • It has been shown to be contrary to the MOS which states that the lead pic ought to conform to the sort of pic which would head up a scholarly work.
  • Another editor has said ... and the pic is from a fake? Why not a Robin Hood film screenshot? Why before 1000AD? All this doesnt make any sense." Pedro (talk) 23:22, 30 April 2012 (UTC.
  • Another editor has lampooned the whole thing.
There is very strong evidence to suggest that the continued use of the image is not in the best interests of Wikipedia, regardless of whether several editors, or even a considerable majority of editors personally think that it is "OK" to use a replica. No-one who thinks that it is OK has put up any sort of argument except that this is an aesthetically pleasing image.
I find it hard to comprehend that the issue of Wikipedia's credibility in the face of such criticism does not strike home with any of you three who have continued the discussion.
It seems to have become a power game in which credibility is far less important than the enforced maintenance of the status quo. All you guys have to do is continue to say "I don't see a problem with using that image" and all arguments for not using a reproduction object are balanced out by a quorum, while at the same time, none of the objections are answered.
In fact, none of the objections have ever been answered.
Right at the beginning, a year ago, Nev1 answered Pedro by telling him, in Nev1's usual gentle manner, that a "reconstruction" was different to a "fake". But the point that Nev1 did not get (and possibly still doesn't) is that a "reproduction" is different to a "reconstruction". The genuine Sutton Hoo Helmet is, in fact, a "reconstruction". The Parthenon is largely a reconstruction. The Portland Vase is a reconstruction. Any of these is worthy to lead up the relevant History article.
Though I might point out here that in all three of these cases, it was later determined that the object had been put together wrongly and needed pulling apart and reconstructing again. This was particularly the case with the Sutton Hoo helmet where the original reconstruction placed much of the gilt decoration differently to the way you see it now. The Vendel Helmets were (I believe) used as a guide to the second reconstruction of the Sutton Hoo Helmet. (The terribly odd thing about the Portland Vase is that some of the bits don't belong at all!)
Your suggestion that I take this to WikiProjects sounds like a good idea. The difficulty lies in expressing it appropriately in the general, rather than specific case.
There are undoubtedly some circumstances which lend themselves to be headed up by reproduction, or even hypothetical projections of objects. The First Temple of Artemis at Ephesus is a case where none of the earliest (and most famous) building exists, and two later temples have stood on the site. (The illustrations to that article have just gone onto my fix-it list)
In the meantime, the reproduction object needs removing from the lead of "Middle Ages", if only because of the amount of flack it is receiving. That is hardly an arguable point, and is one that you could address.
Thank you for your suggestions.
Also, on an entirely personal level, I am not at all happy about the fact that Ealdgyth was left to bear the brunt of my annoyance on her own. I messaged both Johnbod and Nev1, suggesting they weighed in (regardless of what side they took). It is really up to the three of them to reach an agreement about a suitable lead image. It is in part their disagreement (between themselves) which left the present image where it is. I don't mind suggesting, if I'm asked, but its their article.
Amandajm (talk) 04:37, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
I guess part of my suggestion wasn't clear. You say it's "hardly arguable" that the picture should be removed, but several comments have argued against removal, so evidently it is arguable, though to you the arguments seem clearly wrong. What I'm trying to suggest is that you change your approach, not your argument. I'm saying that you're making no progress by posting your opinion to that talk page, and that to make progress you need to do one of two things: post a clear statement on that page which people can agree or disagree with; or post a similarly clear statement in another forum and attempt to get consensus there.
To be as clear as possible: so far you've failed to get sufficient support for your views by engaging in free discussion on that page. Unless you want to give up the argument, you need to change your approach. What is going on now -- long posts from you, with little response -- is exhausting to you and to anyone else reading that page, and is not going to reach a resolution.
A separate comment: you say "it's their article": no, it's not; nobody owns articles. They are editors who have worked on the article, and whose opinions should be consulted regarding significant changes to the article, but they have no special rights to make decisions about that article that other editors don't have. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 06:35, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
Mike, the part that is "hardly arguable" is that the negative comments that have been made about the continued use of the image are really quite telling. The Robin Hood and Al Jolson remarks appear to have come from different people, both of whom obviously find the use of the image positively ludicrous.
With regards to the "ownership" of the article, I do understand what you are saying, and it is because of that, that I feel well within my rights to insist that the use of the particular image is wrong.
However, the grounds for which I assert that have nothing to do with the choosing of a good suitable image within the whole oeuvre of the Middle Ages. I would very much rather that the writers of the article (to which my contributions have been only a slight tweak) found an image of their choosing. I really like Johnbod's suggestion of having several rotating images, so that Ealdgyth could have her votive crowns, Johnbod could have his precious manuscript of the market place and Nev1 could have whatever he chooses (as long as it's a bonafide Medieval object)
Continued criticism needs to be respected. You are undoubtedly aware of the red chalk drawing of Leonardo da Vinci which has been used by writers n Leonardo for more than a century, and accepted as a genuine portrait. That image has come increasingly under fire, and even though it still appears in all older books as the iconic portrait of the painter, some authors, including Martin Kemp no longer use it. While Martin Kemp and I don't agree about everything by any means, I do agree with him that there is reasonable doubt in this case.
Over the past few years, the use of that image to head up the article Leonardo da Vinci has been challenged by a number of members of the public, who have presented good grounds for believing that it is someone else entirely, rather than the tiresome opinion, "it looks too old to be a man of 65" which isn't true of any man who lived an active life in an era when heating was by the open fire, and travel was on foot or horseback, rather than car or train. My father died at 64 and looked remarkably like the red chalk drawing, minus the beard.
The last argument came from a person who was really quite annoying, as they insisted on posting there whole argument in the middle of a talk page of another disputed work, while I repeatedly urged them to move the dispute to the relevant page, the Red chalk portrait page. They did put up some stuff there, eventually!
Anyway, the upshot was that I took stock, realised that the argument was not going away, even if this individual had gone off in a huff (and I hadn't even disagreed....). So I changed the lead pic on the main article for one that is far less impressive in itself, has not had anything like as much exposure and is not "iconic", but has the singular advantage of never having been called into question as a genuine portrait of Leonardo. In fact it was used, as early as about 1530, as the basis for the posthumous portrait. People who are not aware that the well-known picture is a matter of contention might wonder why it isn't there. But I would rather be accurate.
In the case of Fra Angelico, some author came up with the idea that a picture of friar in a painting by Signorelli represents the good man, and a number of other writers went "Wow!". An editor, armed with this information, challenged the image that I had at the head of the article. Tradition says that the figure of Joseph of Arimathea in a painting in St Mark's Museum, Florence, is self-potrait of Fra Angelico, and this is the image that was in place.
I am absolutely 100% certain that the person portrayed by Signorelli is Thomas Aquinas, who was of the same order. But no-one agrees with me, and I have yet to publish a scholarly article on it. Meanwhile, I can find no written support, for the Joseph of Arimathea case, the story as told at St Mark's. So against my better judgement, the Signorelli image stands as the portrait of Fra Angelico.
If I was possessive, I could feel it was "my article" since I completely rewrote it from the terrible judgemental stuff that came from Britannica. But it isn't my article, and I had to let current scholarship prevail, against my (better) judgement. In the end, it all comes down to accountability.
On the other hand, if it matters, I can be intractable. I would not be bludgeoned by a self-interested team of people from Italy, and their New Zealand and US back-up, into publishing on Wikipedia a dubious recent attribution as a bona fide portrait of Leonardo. The games played over that work, including the sudden withdrawal and denial of a statement to the British Press by an Italian art historian (a statement which I entirely support), and the serious misquoting of the exceedingly careful Carlo Pedretti, are positively despicable. I have no idea why the first historian suddenly recanted the most sensible statement that anyone has yet to make about the work. I have tried to discuss, but he is always "at a conference".
Amandajm (talk) 07:38, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
If you decide to follow my advice, and try to take a step-by-step approach to determining what the consensus is on this point, I would be glad to help you decide what forum to use and how to phrase the question. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 10:34, 23 September 2013 (UTC)
A brief follow up, based on your recent edits at that article: I still believe your approach is not likely to get to where you would like to be. That's to say, it's not likely to turn out to be constructive. I think if you still want to pursue this it would be best to work on consensus, not examples. As I said, if you're interested in this approach I'd be happy to work with you, but I don't think your approach is beneficial to the article, and other well-intentioned editors seem to find it unhelpful. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 23:58, 1 October 2013 (UTC)
Mike Christie, The discussion continually comes back to my approach: I've have been rude. I haven't provided convincing reason. I haven't provided a good enough alternative. I have provided alternatives but the are too late (within the context of the period) for the tastes of the editors. (This is all red-herring stuff). Mostly the criticism is that I have failed to get a consensus.
As has been pointed out, I don't seem to know what consensus looks like!
But I am definitely misguided enough to think that the opinions of six regular editors plus six anonymous editors look like sufficiently damning criticism to get the thing changed. So I correlated the negative comments.
What it takes now is for someone to give ground. There must be someone who has the decency to shift position and say "Well, yes, maybe there is a case here. Maybe if twelve people think this ought to change, then it should.
There ought to be some editor who can get past the position of "You don't have a consensus" to "There is a consensus among twelve people".
What it requires is for someone to shift from "You haven't come up with a better alternative" to "Yes, there really is strong opinion that this thing should go!"
Amandajm (talk) 01:07, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
When I say the approach isn't working, I am not making a theoretical point; I am just saying that it's been many weeks, and the image is still there. If you feel that's unsatisfactory, something needs to change. I've suggested what I think needs to be done next, and of course you're free to ignore it, but I don't think you will change the image by the methods you are using. Mike Christie (talk - contribs - library) 09:28, 2 October 2013 (UTC)

St James' Church

Thank you for your message. I would like to point out a couple of things. First, as a matter of principle, an image's caption should only be used to describe what it is being used to illustrate. A Wikipedia article is an encyclopaedia article, not an art catalogue. So if I am including an image of a painting by Leonardo Da Vinci in an article about him, it is relevant to note that the painting illustrated is by him, and possibly which museum now holds it. By contrast, if I am including my photo of my local railway station in an article about the station, it is completely irrelevant that the photograph was taken by me and whether a print resides in my photo album. Secondly, while paintings conceptually are intimately connected with the physical original, photographs are not. In general, it makes more sense to say that a painting is held in a particular collection. With photographs, there could be multiple prints, all of which are equally authentic, and the place from which the Wikipedia copy is derived is only the source for biliographical purposes.

Applying these principles to the three images in question:

  • The first image is primarily being used here to illustrate the context of the church at a particular point in time. The author and physical location is largely irrelevant, but I felt could be useful for historical interest, which is why I retained the information.
  • The second image is a photograph. It is only being used to illustrate the context of the church at a particular point in time. This is a less clear-cut case. On the one hand, the author in particular is of historical interest; on the other, it is not very relevant to the article. This is why I deleted it. I am okay with the author's name being mentioned, but the phrasing of your caption is less than ideal.
  • The third image is a contemporary photograph. The author is not notable. The caption is uninformative about what it actually illustrates, which is the alignment between the barracks and the church. The note that it is a still from a video is entirely trivial.

I hope this clarifies my edit. I have no intention of denying the valuable contributions you have made to the article, and I hope you appreciate that my intention is entirely to further improve the article. --PalaceGuard008 (Talk) 12:54, 23 September 2013 (UTC)

As an artist and art historian, I am firm in the belief that the artist ought to be acknowledged. Copyright protects the ownership of living artists and the more recently deceased. Decency ought to respect the ownership of earlier artists, and those who are still living but have permitted use of their work.
I don't have any difficult about using without acknowledgment the very average point-and-click snapshots that get uploaded without being cropped or straightened. But when Wikipedia has photos uploaded that are carefully composed and are "artworks" in their own right, then the author needs acknowledgment. It is probably wrong of me to make a distinction here, but there appears to be a difference between the camera holder functioning simply as a recorder and functioning as a thinking, planning creative artist. (Strangely enough, it is often the takers of badly lit lop-sided holidays snaps that want to be acknowledged.)
It is, I suppose, a value judgement that I may not be entitled to make. However, some of the world's top photographers have chosen to upload their works to Wikipedia. I would no more use a portrait by Allen Warren without stating the author than I would use a portrait by Van Dyck or Gainsborough.
Tell me, we know when copyright drops out, but at what point, do you think, the right of acknowledgment of creative effort and real talent should cease?
Amandajm (talk) 00:10, 24 September 2013 (UTC)


Thanks for the improvement to Hill's memorial. Much better now! Am behind with work on the SJ suite of articles - trying to get back to developing the main one in particular up to a high standard. Have more content ready to go. (talk) 13:23, 27 September 2013 (UTC) re Buckeridge: Wonderful! (talk) 13:37, 27 September 2013 (UTC)

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Edits to Middle Ages

Please don't disrupt the edit history of the article by adding and removing various alternative lead images. If you want to be able to show what your other suggestions look like, I suggest you use a sandbox, e.g. user:Amandajm/Middle Ages sandbox, copy the lead, paste it as many times as you want and use a different image each time. Thanks, BencherliteTalk 14:23, 30 September 2013 (UTC)

I'd second that. Repeatedly adding and immediately removing material from an article 60-120 seconds later, accompanied by what - at least to some - would appear to be sarcastic edit summaries, isn't constructive editing. Hchc2009 (talk) 15:06, 30 September 2013 (UTC)

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October 2013

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Re: Berek Lajcher

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Hello, Amandajm. You have new messages at Poeticbent's talk page.
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List of Ancient Roofs

Thanks for letting me know. I've reverted it. I had too many windows open and made the wrong click to one of me recent edits instead of my sandbox --Odysses (۞) 01:59, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Banded Quail DYK

Would you like to take a look at ALT1 at the Banded Quail DYK nomination and give it a tick if you approve? I find that such nominations as this one may hang around for weeks if left unresolved. Thank you. Cwmhiraeth (talk) 12:20, 11 October 2013 (UTC)


Hi Amandajm,

I uploaded this image of the crypt and tried to add it in a pair next to the image of the Children's Chapel but failed. Don't know why. Do you think it would be a helpful inclusion? If no, the failure is probably a good thing. If yes, the failure is very frustrating. (talk) 08:56, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

Speculative Inventions of Leonardo da Vinci

The list of everything he was alleged to have invented with sources would be great to read; pity that article was deleted.


I have nominated St James' for GA so we need to find a citation for that choir reference or rewrite it. I hope the article will be well received. (talk) 08:32, 20 October 2013 (UTC)


Is there any reason or strange rule that I don't know about that you gave WCS's nomination date as September 20 when it was created on 21 October? Will that cause a problem? We have whipped up a good little article, eh? (talk) 08:45, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

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Million Award

Hi Amanda, I was looking at your page after running into you again at Kirkpatrick Chapel, and realized I owed you one of these (and possibly more; this name just jumped out at me). Thanks for helping so many readers with your work!

Million award logo.svg The Million Award
For your contributions to bring Leonardo da Vinci (estimated annual readership: 4,118,000) to Good Article status, I hereby present you the Million Award. Congratulations on this rare accomplishment, and thanks for all you do for Wikipedia's readers. -- Khazar2 (talk) 11:43, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

The Million Award is a new initiative to recognize the editors of Wikipedia's most-read content; you can read more about the award and its possible tiers (Quarter Million Award, Half Million Award, and Million Award) at Wikipedia:Million Award. You're also welcome to display this userbox:

Cheers, Khazar2 (talk) 11:43, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

Congratulations! Well deserved. :) -- Jodon | Talk 12:52, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

Yes. We salute you. (talk) 18:08, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

packed galleries

Hi Amanda, thanks for your edit on Johnbod's article. Much better. I tried the packed mode on the page you mentioned following your suggestion to group pictures by subject. Feel free to revert it if you don't like it. Just trying to make pages with a lot of pictures less boxy... --Alberto Fernández Fernández (talk) 15:58, 25 October 2013 (UTC)


Cornflower blue Yogo sapphire.jpg

Thank you for quality contributions to articles such as Restoration of the Sistine Chapel frescoes, for sharing your interest in churches including their art and arcitecture, for teaching even in edit summaries and giving concise advice to new editors, for good arguments and a richly illustrated inspiring user page, - repeating: you are an awesome Wikipedian (11 Augist 2010)!

--Gerda Arendt (talk) 08:10, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

Culture of Australia

Yeah, not many sports persons have been knighted or received state funerals (Ted Whitten and Jim Stynes off the top of my head), but I think the culture of Australia article is oversized and unnecessary details should be avoided. - HappyWaldo (talk) 08:37, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

Most of my edit summaries are kind of half-arsed, I should work on that lol. - HappyWaldo (talk) 09:44, 29 October 2013 (UTC)


I saw your comment at talk:Charles I of England it is quite easy to have a picture moved on Commons. You log on to Commons and go to to location of the picture you want moved and click of the move tab. Unlike on Wikipedia you will not be able to move it yourself instead you are presented with a template (if memory serves) that allows you to make a request to move. If you place your reason in there (as you did on the talk page of the Charles I biography) the move will usually be done within 24 hours. The move process on commons take care of fixing the links on wikipedia to the new location on commons. -- PBS (talk) 10:30, 31 October 2013 (UTC)