User talk:Bobblewik/United Kingdom

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The term "UK" was only brought to life in the 1970's as a common term. It is insulting to both the Scottish and the Welsh. We do not feel "united" and we do not want to be in a Kingdom. Use the term "Great Britain" or "Britain" which has a very very long history of usage right up to the 1970's

If you use the term UK, you are most likely English. The other countries in Britain cringe at hearing it.

You've made a lot re-linking from Great Britain to United Kingdom.

I wonder somewhat about your reasons in respect to the historical context.

For me (who is no native speaker of English), the United Kingdom is a political entity with rather narrow time-scope, and the Britannic island Britain is a geographical entity with eternal time-scope.

Particularly your change in the article on Vikings makes me wonder how you think, but not only that.

kind regards!
--Ruhrjung 09:04, 14 Apr 2004 (UTC)

...thank you! --Ruhrjung 10:39, 14 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Yes, be careful with historical pages: as political entities the United Kingdom didn't exist until 1801, nor Great Britain until 1707 (of course the island of Great Britain has existed since the English Channel flooded after the last ice age). Common usage has lagged a long way behind the political theory. I don't think you'd see "United Kingdom" used outside of very formal contexts until very recently. It imparts a strange flavour to a World War I-era article to use "United Kingdom". Gdr 11:34, 2004 Apr 20 (UTC)
You said "be careful with historical pages: as political entities the United Kingdom didn't exist until 1801, nor Great Britain until 1707"
Yes I know. All my edits are consistent with these facts (or should be).
You also said "I don't think you'd see "United Kingdom" used outside of very formal contexts until very recently. It imparts a strange flavour to a World War I-era article to use "United Kingdom""
I don't regard old usage as a reason to maintain incorrect terminology. Thus if an article says that Great Britain entered the war in 1914, it is not accurate and should be changed to either the United Kingdom or Britain. It sounds to me like you are voting for Britain rather than United Kingdom. I note that point and agree with you.
Bobblewik 12:03, 20 Apr 2004 (UTC)
You are wrong to characterise "Great Britain" as "incorrect terminology".
Great Britain has a specific meaning. If the meaning is not intended, then it is wrong.
It is the name the British used for their country at the time and it is right to use it in historical articles about that country and wrong to insist on an ahistorical legalism about the name. In particular, official documents and treaties of the World War I period did not use "United Kingdom".
See for example, the 1915 Treaty of London [1] uses "Great Britain"; the 1925 Geneva Protocol [2] uses "British Empire"; Lloyd George's famous 1918 speech [3] uses "British", "Great Britain" and "British Empire". No mentions of "United Kingdom" in any of these documents. Gdr 12:29, 2004 Apr 20 (UTC)
An example that does use "United Kingdom" is the 1905 Entente Cordiale [4]. This uses "United Kingdom" in the title of the document but reverts to "Great Britain" in the text. Gdr 12:35, 2004 Apr 20 (UTC)
It is true that there were many uses of the term that would be considered incorrect today. There still are. Even Tony Blair referred to Great Britain incorrectly recently although he was standing alongside the American president who uses that term all the time. Are you British?
Bobblewik 12:47, 20 Apr 2004 (UTC)
How can "Great Britain" be incorrect when it is used consistently by the British in their own state documents? I think you are being overly dogmatic: clearly the term has several meanings. Anyway, this discussion is unlikely to be very productive, so let me make a proposal that might satisfy both of us:
  • For current affairs and history since 1950 or so, use "United Kingdom" throughout.
  • For history before 1950, use "United Kingdom" the first time the country is mentioned, but thereafter use "Britain".
For the record, I'm a citizen of the United Kingdom. ☺ Gdr 17:34, 2004 Apr 20 (UTC)
Many thanks for your reply and constructive suggestion. I am happy to try to follow the proposal.
I am also a fellow citizen of the UK but not from England. I may indeed be guilty of pedantry. I am from Scotland, and most Scots and Irish are aware of misattribution (e.g. 'English Queen', 'English Army', English Prime Minister). Perhaps you are also Scottish or Irish but take a different view.
If you want me to general shift my bias from United Kingdom to Britain then I am happy to do that. After all, if I was writing the original articles that I was editing, I would probably have written Britain in most of the instances.
Bobblewik 19:18, 20 Apr 2004 (UTC)
I think that would be a good idea. Remember that direct translations of "Great Britain" are common in many languages on the European continent, but without the meaning you argue for as the one and only correct ;-) — why Great Britain is likely to continue to emerge in edits by contributors with other mother tongues and nationalities than the English.
--Ruhrjung 20:20, 20 Apr 2004 (UTC)
OK. I will. Thanks for the feedback by everybody.
Bobblewik 20:35, 20 Apr 2004 (UTC)
I think formal use of UK is very recent, hence the Olympic team of Great Britain, the GB car sticker etc.. I'd even go so far as to say that the use of UK has increased dramatically since the rise of the Internet and the .uk suffix. I think many people still use GB rather than UK when adressing envelopes. So whilst technically UK is correct as a shorthand for the current political entity and and GB is not, I think that the use of GB in text should not be expunged entirely when the context relates to it's former usage even if technically incorrect. What GB links to is another matter as I mentioned in my comment below. Mintguy (T)

I agree that Great Britain probably shouldn't be used, but why not use "Britain" instead of the "United Kingdom"? I've rolled back a few of your changes, but perhaps you'd be willing to (mostly) change them to "Britain" instead? john 16:22, 17 Apr 2004 (UTC)

I've read your comments on John's page. I think you should look at the context of what you are changing more clearly, when you decide that Great Britain should be expunged. You mention something about causing offence by using Great Britain in contrast to lesser Britain, because it is linked with the language of terrorism. I have no idea what this is meant to mean. Great Britain means the island of Great Britain as opposed to little Britain or Brittany. In French these two places are known as Grande Bretagne and Bretagne. Great Britain does not mean "Britain is Great". I should also point out that in the Olympics teams from the United Kingdom compete as "Great Britain" with GB stamped on their vests. For the most part I don't think it is wrong to have the words Great Britain used in relation to the UK unless we are talking about a link. In this case for the most part the articles should use [[United Kingdom]] or [[United Kingdom|Britain]] or [[United Kingdom|Great Britain]] as appropriate to the context. I think that John was wrong to revert on at least one of your edits (I haven't seen all that has gone on here) but in the case of Waffen-SS, when it was pointing to [[Great Britain]] it was wrong, the change to [[United Kingdom]] was correct as we are clearly talking about the country, but the change to [[Britain]] is clearly wrong because that page in fact more of a disambiguation page. Mintguy (T) 15:21, 19 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Agreement here. There are times where 'Great Britain' is the correct wording. 'Great Britain' is the name of the largest of the British Isles, for one thing, and when that particular island is what is being talked about, then it is the correct term. For example, the recent moving of Rail transport in Great Britain to Rail transport in the United Kingdom was incorrect, since the article WAS about rail transport on the geographical entity of Great Britain. I agree that Great Britain is the incorrect term to use for the modern state when it is the nation / political entity that is being talked about, though it IS in wide use. —Morven 21:28, 20 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Why change Great Britain to Britain? Great Britain is the official name used in the full name of the United Kingdom, isn't it? If what was meant was that Mireille Mathieu (or others) toured England, Scotland or Wales, wasn't it ok? David.Monniaux 12:05, 24 Apr 2004 (UTC)


Oh look. Yet more debate about UK GB NI IE issues at Talk:Rail transport in the United Kingdom/Alternate naming schemes --Tagishsimon


STOP changing EVERY instance of Great Britain!!!! Several of the changes you've made in the last few hours are completely wrong. e.g. Cornwall and Football at the Summer Olympics. Mintguy (T) 15:10, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Thanks for the feedback. What is wrong with the changes I made at those pages?
Bobblewik 15:14, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)


Please do not think that every single instance of Great Britain is automatically wrong. On the Cornwall page it was talking about the Cornish penninsular on the island of [[[Great Briain]]. On the Olympic page the UK competes as Great Britain, not United Kingdom. The International license plate code for the UK is GB. Please don't expunge every instance of Great Britain especially in a historical context where Great Britain would have been used more often the UK. Mintguy (T) 15:20, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Quote [Please do not think that every single instance of Great Britain is automatically wrong.]
I have targetted those instances where Great Britain is less good than the alternatives. For example Following the explosion of Pan Am Flight 103 the [[Great Britain|British]] and [[United States|American]] governments... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran_Air_Flight_655 was clearly wrong. There are many examples like that. I am sure you would want that to be corrected.
Quote [On the Cornwall page it was talking about the Cornish penninsular on the island of [[[Great Briain]]].
OK.
Quote [On the Olympic page the UK competes as Great Britain, not United Kingdom]
One of the articles clarifies this issue correctly as follows: The United Kingdom (who compete at the Olympics under the name of Great Britain) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Football_at_the_Summer_Olympics. Therefore a reference to the team name of Great Britain is correct, but a reference to a British sportsperson as coming from the United Kingdom is also correct. See also: http://www.olympics.org.uk/Library/boa_pdf/Whatyouneedtoknow.pdf
Quote [The International license plate code for the UK is GB.]
You state it correctly. The code is merely misnamed.
Quote [Please don't expunge every instance of Great Britain]
I have not been trying to do that. I have merely targetted those instances where 'Britain' or 'United Kingdom' are justifiable. Britain can mean either United Kingdom or Great Britain.


You changed the amnesty for the second time and it has been reverted for a second time, because Great Britain is correct. The UK didn't exist in 1747. Mintguy (T) 15:27, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I certainly did not intend to do a second edit and I do not wish to get into an edit war. That was a mistake but it probably occurred simply because it came up in the search list and I see that the United Kingdom is a reasonable term in that text. Yes, the United Kingdom did not exist in 1747. However, the text was: The last act of amnesty passed in Great Britain ... and that phrase is also true if you use the term 'United Kingdom'.
I have tried to make note of previous conversations on this topic, i.e. that the use the term UK is fairly recent. It seems that many Wikipedia authors/editors default to using the term Great Britain. I don't know why. British nationals do not generally default to that term, they will generally say 'Britain' by default.
That is why I have used the term 'Britain' in many cases. An analogy might be if we kept on referring to the Contiguous USA or the 48 States. In many cases it would be correct (e.g. Tony Blair visited the Contiguous USA and spoke to Congress would be technically correct), or sometimes merely a matter of interpretation, but in many other cases it would be wrong. It would be much better if people stopped thinking of the default term as Great Britain.
I have fixed a lot of errors. You have been kind enough on more than one occasion to draw my attention to the few cases where you think there was no error. I hope you will agree that many of the uses of Great Britain were wholly wrong. You may believe that I have a high error rate, but if more than 50% of my edits are correct, then my intervention is worthwhile for Wikipedia as a whole. Certainly all my interventions are well intended. My intention is to be 100% correct but perhaps the percentage is only in the 90's. You may estimate it as lower. I will try to be even more cautious.
Trying to help.
Bobblewik 19:11, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)


I do not consider the use of Great Britain as a synonym of the UK wholly wrong even in the modern context. Plenty of people have no problem with the use of GB as a synonym of UK. You give an example using "contiguous USA". A better analogy is the use of "America" to mean the USA. It is technically incorrect to use the term the "American President", for two reasons, a) The continental USA does not encompass the entire continent of the America and b) the state of Hawaii isn't even in the Americas. And yet the term American president is used all over the place. I see you wish to expunge it completely (and I mean no offense) as pedantry. Mintguy (T) 19:45, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Thanks for your reply. I think we are now getting to the essence of the debate.
Quote [I do not consider the use of Great Britain as a synonym of the UK wholly wrong even in the modern context. Plenty of people have no problem with the use of GB as a synonym of UK. I see you wish to expunge it completely (and I mean no offense) as pedantry].
I do not wish to expunge it completely, merely to use appropriate terms for the country. Do not just take my word for it. Read what is said in the following references:
"Great Britain and Northern Ireland together make up the United Kingdom...The best thing that can be said for "British" is that it is not quite as misleading as "American", but it is nevertheless the established term for "relating to the UK".... So what about "Britain"? This is not a term with any legal meaning, but if you ask the English person in the street what country they live in surveys show that more will answer "Britain" than anything else. So it should probably be taken as a back-formation from "British", and therefore to mean "United Kingdom".
  • GREAT BRITAIN
Used by cartographers to denote the biggest of the British Isles, containing most but not all of England, Wales and Scotland. The usage goes back to Roman times ("Britannia Major", distinguished from "Britannia Minor", ie Brittany). It also forms part of the official title of the United Kingdom, in which case it means the political entities of England, Scotland, Wales, including the offshore islands which belong to those countries. Because of the possible confusion between these two usages, "the British mainland" has been suggested as the least ambiguous term for the major island itself.
  • BRITAIN
The informal name for the United Kingdom.
  • BRITISH
is the formal designation of the nationality of citizens of the United Kingdom, and of certain others.
  • THE UNITED KINGDOM OF GREAT BRITAIN AND NORTHERN IRELAND
The official name for the nation informally referred to as Britain. Often abbreviated to "the UK". The term "United Kingdom" only became the official title in 1801, when the Act of Ireland united Britain and Ireland. It had however been in use since 1707, when the Act of Union incorporated Scotland with England and Wales into the United Kingdom of Great Britain.
Country name:
conventional long form: United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
conventional short form: United Kingdom
abbreviation: UK
  • The British Embassy www.britainusa.com/faq/xq/asp/SID.273/qx/showfaq.htm
"The United Kingdom is made up of the countries of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. ... Great Britain, on the other hand, comprises only England, Scotland and Wales. The term ‘Britain' is used informally to refer to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland."
  • The Prime Minister www.number-10.gov.uk/output/Page823.asp
"The United Kingdom is made up of four countries: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Its full name is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Great Britain, however, comprises only England, Scotland and Wales. Great Britain is the largest island of the British Isles."
Thus casual references to the country, the government or the people should default to Britain or United Kingdom. It is convenient that the term Britain is valid over a longer period than either Great Britain or United Kingdom. Thus I am happy to adopt the term Britain widely. If you regard the terms GB and UK as synonymous, then presumably it does not matter if I change GB to either UK or Britain. However, you appear to be specifically objecting to the use of 'UK' and 'Britain'. That is what I can't yet understand. Perhaps the references that I have just quoted are of interest.
Quote [You give an example using "contiguous USA". A better analogy is the use of "America" to mean the USA. It is technically incorrect to use the term the "American President", for two reasons, a) The continental USA does not encompass the entire continent of the America and b) the state of Hawaii isn't even in the Americas. And yet the term American president is used all over the place.]
I agree with you that 'American President' is wrong for the reasons you state. If I wrote such a thing and somebody took the trouble to correct it, I would not object.
Bobblewik 21:04, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Go to work ([5]) Mintguy (T)

Wow! 142 references to American President. As I said, I won't object to anybody who corrects it. I may even do some myself if I knew what the correct term should be!
Bobblewik 21:35, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

There is no acceptable synonym apart from the long-winded POTUS. "American President" is an acceptable synonym despite its technical inaccuracy. The same is true for GB with regard to UK. This is my point. Changing every instance of GB to UK or Britain is pure pedantry and in somecases downright wrong. Mintguy (T) 21:43, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Quote [There is no acceptable synonym apart from the long-winded POTUS. "American President" is an acceptable synonym despite its technical inaccuracy.]
OK.
Quote [The same is true for GB with regard to UK. This is my point.]
You made two points:
  • Long-winded. This does not apply to Great Britain. It is not shorter than United Kingdom or Britain.
  • Acceptable synonym. If GB and UK are acceptable synonyms for you, then why will you not accept the term UK (or Britain) on Wikipedia?
Quote [Changing every instance of GB to UK or Britain is pure pedantry and in somecases downright wrong]
I have no plans to change every instance of GB to UK or Britain. I don't regard myself as a pedant but if my efforts are regarded as pedantry, I am not unhappy. If I am in some cases downright wrong for fewer than 50% of the edits, then Wikipedia is better off for my intervention.
Trying to help.


Bobblewik 22:13, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Just to pile on, changing it in stamp-related articles goes against the longstanding convention of calling the country "Great Britain", which is followed even by UK collectors (take a look at the webpages of the #1 British dealer Stanley Gibbons, for instance [6]). We need Wikipedia to be consistent with the authorities, otherwise it's bad for our credibility. Stan 21:45, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

This is becomming tiresome. Prime Miniter of Great Britain is CORRECT for periods before 1801. Please revert where necessary. Mintguy (T) 11:47, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

To Mintguy. If you use 'Great Britain' and 'United Kingdom', then you have two different types of references and in the case of William Pitt, you must use both. It would not be so bad if this was applied consistently but the sad fact is that throughout Wikipedia references to the country are frequently wrong. All Prime Ministers can be correctly described as British so that is what I was implementing. If you notice, all links that say 'Prime Minister of Great Britain' redirect to 'Prime Minister of United Kingdom' anyway, so I was also correcting the links to avoid the redirect. A similar redirect happens with 'Military of Great Britain' (which was an incorrect 20th century reference that I put right).
So describing all Prime Ministers as 'British' is a universally applicable approach that avoids having two different types of references. Describing Winston Churchill as a Prime Minister of Great Britain is wrong, and describing one of the Iraq coalition members as Great Britain is wrong. I do not know why you are so hostile to the words 'Britain' and 'British'.

Bobblewik 16:06, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Describing Winston Churchill as a Prime Minister of Great Britain is not wrong, it may be described as inaccurate. Much like describing George W. Bush as President of America. Specifically regarding Pitt the Younger, you changed it from '''William Pitt the Younger''' ([[May 28]], [[1759]] - [[January 23]], [[1806]]) was a [[United Kingdom|British]] [[politician]] and [[Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|Prime Minister]] of [[Kingdom of Great Britain|Great Britain]] from [[1783]] to [[1801]] and of the [[United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland|United Kingdom]] from [[1804]] until his death in 1806." to '''William Pitt the Younger''' ([[May 28]], [[1759]] - [[January 23]], [[1806]]) was a [[United Kingdom|British]] [[politician]] and [[Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|British Prime Minister]] from [[1783]] to [[1801]] and of the [[United Kingdom]] from [[1804]] until his death in 1806. You thereby destroyed the correct links to the Kingdom of Great Britain and United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and ended up with the article stating in garbled English "Pit ... was a politician ... and British Prime Minister from 1783 to 1801 and of the United Kingdom from 1804 until his death in 1806." I am not hostile to British of Britain, but you appear to be hostile to Great Britain when it is being used quite correctly. The vast majority of the edits you have made in the last 24 hours in this crusade to rid wikipedia of the words "Great Britain" have been wrong. another example being British car number plates. This is about number plates in Great Britain. Northern Ireland has its own system. Mintguy (T) 19:33, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Quote [Describing Winston Churchill as a Prime Minister of Great Britain is not wrong, it may be described as inaccurate.]
We have a point of agreement. You say that Churchill as a Prime Minister of Great Britain is inaccurate. I agree. However, the term British Prime Minister is accurate and universal to all Prime Ministers. That was why I changed such inaccurate references to accurate references. I also updated the links to avoid redirects.
As far is William Pitt is concerned, the last bit should have said [[Prime Minister of the United Kingdom|British Prime Minister]] from [[1783]] to [[1801]] and from [[1804]] until his death in 1806.. That seems much clearer.
You say that the vast majority of the edits I made are wrong. I certainly try to not be wrong. Can you give more information so I can look into it?
  • If text is changed from Great Britain to United Kingdom, you say I should not do it.
  • If text is changed Great Britain -> Britain, you say I should not do it.
  • You have not indicated any changes that you are willing to accept or tolerate.
I don't want to upset you, and this debate is probably as tiresome for me as it is for you. If your request is that I make no changes, then I can't accept that. What are you asking from me?


Bobblewik 20:57, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I am asking the following:

  1. Do not change all references to Great Britain for the sake of it, or because the phrase "Great Britain" offends your eye or something.
  2. Do not change references to Great Britain which refer to the Kingdom of Great Britain that existed between 1707 and 1801. The use of Great Britain in this context is ENTIRELY correct and should not be changed. (These are the majority of incorrect changes that you have made today and which I had to revert myself because you carried on doing so after I had left a message on your talk page).
  3. Do not change references to Great Britain when the article is talking about the island of Great Britain. The use of Great Britain in this context is ENTIRELY correct and should not be changed. (An example is the Cornwall article)
  4. Do not change references to Great Britain when the article is talking about the nations of the United Kingdom exclusive of Northern Ireland (such as in the article about license plates in GB).
  5. Do not change references to Great Britain when the article is talking about cultural matters not directly related to the nation state. (There are several articles which you changed refer to Ireland (the island) and Great Britain (the island)) and not the Republic of Ireland and the UK.
  6. Do not change references to Great Britain when the article is talking about the nations that exist on the island of Great Britain and is purposely excluding Northern Ireland.
  7. Do not change references to Great Britain when the term is being used by an organisation even though it may be technically incorrect (for example the Ski Club of Great Britain also represents Northern Ireland and the Gaming Board for Great Britain regulates in Northern Ireland.
  8. Do not change references to Great Britain where it is used (as opposed to UK) by participants or experts in that particular field. Stan Shebs gives a good example here with its use by stamp collectors.
  9. Do not change references to Great Britain when the use of GB has official sanctioning (such as the GB licence plate of the Great Britain Olympic team).
Mintguy (T) 22:18, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Thank you for being specific. That is quite a lot of prohibitions, I will try to examine each point in detail and respond later. To help me get going, can you clarify some general points:
  • When you say 'do not change', I presume that you mean Great Britain -> United Kingdom. There are many cases where the text is, or should be, a general reference to the nation, culture or people, perhaps over a length of time. What is your position on the use of the term 'Britain'? For example saying William Pitt and Winston Churchill were both British Prime Ministers or the British Army has fought in France on many occasions
  • Of all the changes that I have done, are any that you think are good, accept or tolerate?
  • I presume that you are not 100% against the use of the terms Britain or United Kingdom. Are you willing to define the circumstances where you think they are better, acceptable, or merely tolerable?


Bobblewik 22:37, 21 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Just to mention something which I can't see explicitly referred to in the extensive discussion above ;) The term 'Great Britain' still has a perfectly valid current meaning. It refers to the combination of England, Scotland and Wales. Whilst the term 'United Kingdom' also includes Northern Ireland. GB is still used in various government statistics etc. In very many cases it may be valid to say such-and-such is a place in Great Britain. It could equally well be stated that it is in the United Kingdom...or the European Union....or Europe....etc. So, anyway, I just wanted to make the point that in many cases either option is likely to be 'correct'. Mazzy 15:42, 25 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Please check your facts before changing Great Britain to UK in bird articles - several of the species you changed have only occurred in GB, and have never occurred in Northern Ireland. The recording units for birds are Britain and Ireland, including Northern ireland, so all your changes are inappropriate unless you have checked against an Irish list. However, for some species it is quite likely that the comment would apply to Ireland as wel, so I've only reverted those I know are wrong (incidentally, England would be a more accurate descriptor for Allen's Gallinule, Egyptian Nightjar and Oriental Pratincole, which have only be found in that country. jimfbleak 19:08, 25 Jul 2004 (UTC)

You seem to be completely ignoring the above requests. I do not come on to wikipedia to scan the changes made by you and revert them, but I am finding myself having to do this before I do anything else now. Mintguy (T) 21:31, 26 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Oh man, the old GB versus UK debate again. I can understand people's annoyance at the issue but given that UK and GB mean different entities it is extremely important to use the right term in the right context, depending on whether on is talking about GB (Scotland, Wales + England) or the United Kingdom (Scotland, Wales, England + Northern Ireland). The problem on wikipedia is that some people who don't realise that GB and UK are different, with GB either being an earlier kingdom that existed until 1801 or a subset of the UK, using them interchangably. It is like using Ireland when you actually mean Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland, or Germany when referring to West Germany or East Germany prior to unification. An encyclopaedia has to be clinically precise in its use of language, so that it is crystal clear in all contexts what is being talked about, especially for users who do not have background knowledge to allow them to know that when you said GB you really were talking about the UK. So using England for Great Britain, or Great Britain when you mean the United Kingdom is an elementary error. Britain is a tolerable, though scarcely accurate middle ground.FearEireann

Why are you destroying the links to United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland? What's wrong with linking there? The United Kingdom article starts with United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The name change is not readily apparent. --Jiang 20:30, 30 Jul 2004 (UTC)

I've responded on my talk page and will make any further responses there. Please do not make any such changes until the issue is settled. Cheers, Jiang 20:56, 30 Jul 2004 (UTC)

This is absolutely outrageous. Your next step no doubt will be to destroy links to the Kingdom of Great Britain. Perhaps you might also move on to making links to Nazi Germany or Prussia point at Germany, make links to Soviet Union point to Commonwealth of Independent States, make links to Persia point at Iran make links to Roman Empire point at Italy. This cannot go on! 00:42, 31 Jul 2004 (UTC)

There is a complete inconsistency in what you are doing. You've changed numerous articles that link to Britain and Ireland to point to United Kingdom and Ireland. The article at Ireland is about the island of Ireland and not the Republic of Ireland. Where these articles are talking about the geographical areas and not the nations, Great Britain is correct. Mintguy (T) 14:53, 20 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Britain[edit]

Why did you change the links from Great Britain to Britain on 19th century? Please respond here. --Brunnock 23:52, 27 November 2005 (UTC)

I believe that the Act of Union 1800 means that Great Britain was not a good term for what was being described. Bobblewik 00:06, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
The Act of Union is about the United Kingdom. Why are you linking to an article about the history of the word "Britain"? --Brunnock 00:14, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
Indeed--you made a hash of :::theTreaty of Washington (1871) -- a treaty is negotiated between nations and not with a place. I've no problem with updating the link to United Kingdom, but Britain is just wrong it that context. olderwiser 01:40, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
Treaty of Washington (1871) was inaccurate because it previously said Great Britain. If you (olderwiser) say that United Kingdom is better, that is fine by me. Feel free to change it.
So you changed something that was wrong to something else that was even more wrong -- what's the point? If you're going to go to the bother of making such pedantic changes, at least make an effort to not make incorrect changes. olderwiser 13:39, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
My use of the term Britain is informed by:
  • Website of the British Prime Minister On this site the term 'Britain' is used informally to mean the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
  • The British Embassy the term “Britain” is used informally to mean the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
  • Foreign and Commonwealth Office guide to the EU for simplicity, this booklet uses the term “Britain”. It should be taken to mean the United Kingdom (i.e. England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland).
  • The Economist In most contexts favour simplicity over precision and use Britain rather than Great Britain or the United Kingdom, and America rather than the United States.
  • alt-usage-english Like the USA, the UK suffers from having no convenient adjective to describe the country or its people. The best thing that can be said for "British" is that it is not quite as misleading as "American", but it is nevertheless the established term for "relating to the UK"....So what about "Britain"? This is not a term with any legal meaning, but if you ask the English person in the street what country they live in surveys show that more will answer "Britain" than anything else. So it should probably be taken as a back-formation from "British", and therefore to mean "United Kingdom".
  • The British Consulate The term "Britain" is used informally to mean the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Perhaps this discussion should moved to Talk:United Kingdom Bobblewik 12:16, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
You should either edit the Britain article or you should stop linking to an article about the etymology of the word "Britain". --Brunnock 12:49, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
Hmm. So what is your suggestion for the link (genuine question)? Bobblewik 12:54, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
Perhaps Britain? There are also situations where British Empire is more correct. --Brunnock 13:03, 28 November 2005 (UTC)
Good points. The article United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland seems to me to be a distraction. There is a lot of overlap with other articles and it could usefully be merged United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The various Wikipedia articles that are supposed to explain it are not easy to read. Thanks for the feedback. Bobblewik 14:38, 28 November 2005 (UTC)

Proposed UK merger[edit]

While I agree with your "leave for 7 days" theory for the majority of wikipedia articles, I believe SimonP was right when he said that it should not apply to high-volume articles such as United Kingdom (the fourth most linked article on wikipedia]]. Looking at the history, you have reverted its deletion 3 or 4 times in the last day, and every time someone has again removed it. It is clear that your ideas are opposed and are extrememly unlikely to gain support - for the sake of everyone just back down and accept democracy. Cheers - Deano 20:19, 3 December 2005 (UTC)

You've just done it again. You've got to stop doing this - you are ignoring the3-revert rule and just generally causing a nuisance. I ask you again, please stop. Deano 20:30, 3 December 2005 (UTC)
Thank you for your comments here. A debate on early tag removal would have been welcome. Unfortunately, the first removal of the tag started 1.5 days from when it was added. I think 1.5 days is not a reasonable length of time. Removal by stealth and by making false statements like 'debate petered out' is wrong. Just because editors did not like ideas different to theirs does not mean that they should prevent other Wikipedia readers from engaging in it.
I do not know why people are so upset about this issue, if they count 7 days from when the tag was put there, or 1 day from the last comment, it is not such a long time for them to wait.
Thanks again for bringing it here. Bobblewik 20:45, 3 December 2005 (UTC)
I totally agree that removal by stealth and false statements are useless, but all said and done it has been around 5 days since you first introduced the tag, and on the basis of United Kingdom being one of the highest-volume aricles on Wikipedia, I think it would be fair to say that an extremely significant number of people have seen it. Indeed, a significant number have commented on it. I do not condone anyone prematurely removing the tag without due debate, but I can also see that you are fighting a losing battle and there is little or no point delaying the inevitable. Deano 20:56, 3 December 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for your further response. I appreciate it. The debate on the talk page seemed reasonable. I was genuine in the debate and I believe others are too. So I was quite surprised to encounter hostility to the tag itself. I made an open comment about a 7 tag expiry period in the talk page but it was not challenged there. The fact that early aggression has continued for days till nearly the reasonable deadline does not make changing the deadline more palatable. I agree that I am fighting a losing battle. I am glad that you have said that you do not condone premature removal. It would be nice if you or anyone else made that point on the talk page. Bobblewik 21:59, 3 December 2005 (UTC)
  • Pity the UK article is so poorly written! Tony 23:35, 17 December 2005 (UTC)
Thanks. Bobblewik 17:20, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

3RR[edit]

You have easily breached the 3RR rule despite warnings to stop. You have now been proposed for a block for the multiple breach.FearÉIREANNIreland-Capitals.PNG\(caint) 21:17, 3 December 2005 (UTC)

GB -> UK[edit]

Lay off the wholesale changing of "Great Britain" or "Britain" to "United Kingdom". The current "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" is a recent development, and doesn't apply to things back in 1816 or whenever. There was, before the current U.K.G.B.N.I. a "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland"--go look up dates of both "United Kingdoms". Gene Nygaard 15:51, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)

As far as I am aware, the edits that I have made are fully in line with the history, politics and geography of the terms. I don't think that I have made any changes from Britain to United Kingdom at all. Which edit offends you? Bobblewik  (talk) 16:15, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Your view of history, politics, etc.—maybe. A few things to keep in mind.
  • If you link to United Kingdom, it damn sure better not be equally applicable to Ireland.
  • It most likely should have something to do with the governmental entity--and as someone else has pointed out in your archived discussion which I looked at after entering my comment here, "Great Britain" isn't necessarily incorrect even when it is. So, according to general Wikipedia philosophy, you should let it lie unless you have a pretty good reason for changing it. By all means, feel free to use "United Kingdom" in your own writing in this contest—just don't be so free and loose with other people's usage.
  • The opening statement of the United Kingom article says it deals with the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. If you want to make a reference to an earlier United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, specify it. (IMHO, there rarely would be any good reason for doing so.)
  • A little vagueness isn't necessarily a bad thing.
  • For a specific example, see my changes in Metrication (just going from memory, I think that one fits). Gene Nygaard 16:33, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Another note: The Great Britain link is an expanded disambiguation page and is often a better and more useful page to link to then the United Kingdom page. Gene Nygaard 16:38, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I looked at Metrication. My edits was as follows: in the 1820s, Great Britain consolidated the various gallons --> in the 1820s, Britain consolidated the various gallons. I don't understand the complaint. Bobblewik  (talk) 16:49, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Don't act stupid. You also changed the link, didn't you? BTW, I'd prefer Great Britain over Britain anyway. Gene Nygaard 17:22, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I am not stupid, please do not insult me. Assume good faith. Yes I added a link. Bobblewik  (talk) 18:54, 23 Jan 2005 (UTC)