User talk:Butwhatdoiknow/Archive1

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Hello, Butwhatdoiknow, and welcome to Wikipedia! Thank you for your contributions. I hope you like the place and decide to stay. Here are some pages that you might find helpful:

I hope you enjoy editing here and being a Wikipedian! Please sign your name on talk pages using four tildes (~~~~); this will automatically produce your name and the date. If you need help, check out Wikipedia:Questions, ask me on my talk page, or place {{helpme}} on your talk page and someone will show up shortly to answer your questions. Again, welcome!  TellyaddictTalk 20:12, 23 December 2006 (UTC)

References vs Footnotes

Lengthy discussion about using "Footnotes" as a heading for embedded citations (such as those created with the <ref> tag) that ultimately proved meaningless because, as explained in a parallel discussion on the WP:Footnotes talk page, the editors of that page decided some time ago that "Notes" is better than "Footnotes."
The following discussion has been closed. Please do not modify it.

References are perfectly valid on wikipedia and are the more common compared to Footnotes, there is no need to change sections in articles to footnotes. Peachey88 (Talk Page | Contribs) 09:54, 7 June 2008 (UTC)

There may be no "need," but there is no prohibition either. I think "Footnotes" is an improvement. Is there any reason not to make improvements? Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 17:50, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

See Wikipedia:Footnotes, in which it refers to the section as being titled as either "References" or "Notes". If there's been a wikipedia discussion somewhere (as opposed to your opinion that it should be that way), please cite it here. Thanks. Quaeler (talk) 11:48, 7 June 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Layout#Standard appendices and descriptions, Wikipedia:References#Section headings & Wikipedia:Manual of Style#Section management. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 17:50, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

I am going to revert Washington Township back to references. All the other municipalities of Lycoming County and probably most of, if not all, the articles about the municipalities use the term references over endnotes. Dincher (talk) 21:35, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

"References" is a list of referenced materials (books, websites, etc. cited in the main text). According to what you typed below the use of References is correct for Washington Township. Dincher (talk) 21:55, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
Please see the entire article from which that quote appears, and the others cited in my entry. After you have read those article then please let me know whether you will agree with me that "footnotes" are referenced materials that are linked to text by way of a "ref" tag (appearing in a "Notes" or, perhaps, "Footnotes" section) and "references" are referenced materials that are part of an unlinked list (appearing in a "References" section). Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 22:16, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm also reverting some of your changes. Sorry about that. "Footnotes" may be a more accurate name for the footnote section of an article, but "References" is standard wikipedia style. Unless there's a good reason to do otherwise, it's always best to follow standard wikipedia style, since constency makes wikipedia more useful for casual readers. Klausness (talk) 14:50, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

I am reverting your changes to my changes for the following reasons: First of all, "footnotes" is acceptable per Wikipedia:Manual of Style#Section management, Wikipedia:References#Section headings and Wikipedia:Layout#Standard appendices and descriptions. Secondly, "references" is something different from footnotes (or notes) per Wikipedia:Layout#Standard appendices and descriptions ("Notes" is for footnotes containing source citations or commentary on the main text. "References" is a list of referenced materials (books, websites, etc. cited in the main text). Notes and references are often listed under one heading.) and Wikipedia:Guide to layout#Notes. Thirdly, I thought the goal of Wikipedia was constant improvement (e.g., adding a more descriptive heading that will inform casual readers), not calcification (e.g., continuing to use an unenlightening heading because "that is the way we've always done it"). Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 16:47, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
I actually agree with you about "References" meaning something else, but I don't see how "Footnotes" is significantly better than "Notes", and "Notes" has the advantage of consistency with current practice. Inconsistency, on the other hand, can make for a worse user experience. Will notes be in a section called "References", "Notes", "Footnotes", "End Notes", or something else that made sense to a particular editor at the time? "Footnotes" may be slightly better than "Notes", but are you going to personally change the millions of articles that already use "References" or "Notes"? It might be a good idea to change the section name to "Footnotes" in all articles, but changing it in just a few is a bad idea. Wikipedia is supposed to work by consensus, so if you think these sections should be called "Footnotes", then the best approach is to work towards getting consensus for a change in the style guidelines. No, we don't want calcification -- that's why there's a process for getting consensus for changes in guidelines. Without changes in the style guidelines, people will keep reverting your changes, and other editors will continue to call these sections "References" or "Notes". Or you could go with the current guidelines and change the names of these sections from "References" to "Notes". Klausness (talk) 19:04, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
[I have responded to the issue of whether "Footnotes" is an acceptable name for the footnotes section at wp:footnotes talk page. Here I take up the issue of your objection to my changing existing headings from "References" to "Notes" (or "Footnotes").] As you point out, I will not be able to singlehandedly change every Wikipedia article that uses "References" improperly (according to the four articles I have cited above). But what is the harm in doing what I can? Why do you feel the need to revert my changes? If "Footnotes" is so distasteful to you why don't you "improve" my changes by modifying them to "Notes" (instead of reverting them to "References" - a word you agree is currently misused)? Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 20:12, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
The reason I changed it back to "References" is purely pragmatic: it's easier to undo an edit than to make a new change. Since I (along with other editors who appear to have undone similar changes of yours elsewhere) thought that the articles were better with "References" than with "Footnotes", I undid your changes. I don't want to turn this into an edit war -- I just saw your changes on a couple of pages on my watchlist, and then I saw a few other similar edits in your history that I also undid while I was at it. As for what the harm is in doing what you can, the harm is in inconsistency. Just changing things by yourself in this way leads to stylistic inconsistency in wikipedia, which is, in my opinion, a bad thing. That's why I think one should either use the currently agreed-upon style guidelines (unless there's something specific to an article that makes the style guidelines inappropriate for that one article) or try to change the guidelines. Klausness (talk) 20:30, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
And the FOUR "currently agreed-upon style guidelines" I have cited say that "Footnotes" is just fine. Is there some reason you are ignoring those? Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 20:42, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
The guideline that specifically discusses footnotes, which I would consider the authoritative guideline for footnotes, only mentions "References" and "Notes". Klausness (talk) 21:02, 21 June 2008 (UTC)
The article discussing the mechanics of footnotes is not necessarily more authoritative with regard to the name of the section in which footnotes appear. Indeed, those articles that take a global view of section naming would seem a better source. And, in any case, the text of the footnotes article is currently under discussion on its talk page. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 21:52, 21 June 2008 (UTC)

Hi, me again. I saw that you'd deleted the lengthhy but ultimately pretty pointless discussion we had on the footnotes talk page. Not that it's any big loss, but it's generally considered a Bad Thing to delete discussions on talk pages (except for your own talk page, where it's perfectly OK). So I've restored the discussion but put it inside {{hat}} and {{hab}} tags so that it normally shows up collapsed. I hope that's OK. Klausness (talk) 19:39, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

Thanks, I just recently learned about the hat/hab approach. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 11:42, 28 June 2008 (UTC)


Greetings. I see you've started making enthusiastic quantities of changes to the well established and understood References sub-heading, by renaming to Notes. All the sections I've reviewed so far have consisted only of references. Please see Wikipedia:Guide to layout#Notes "If there are only a few cited sources in an article and all of the references are cited [..] then name the section "References"" for this (very common) case. Once again, thank you for your WP:Good Faith intentions in the area of consistency. —Sladen (talk) 02:58, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

First: You quoted only part of a sentence in support of your position. That sentence concludes: "unless some of the footnotes are notes and not citations, in which case name the section 'Notes and references'." From this I conclude that (a) a section containing only footnotes should be named "Notes," (b) a section containing only references should be named "References," and (c) a section containing both notes and references should be named "Notes and references."
Second: You say that the sections I have changed to "Notes" contain only references, implying that they don't contain footnotes. However, I believe that the Guide to Layout you have cited makes it clear that "notes" are citations made with the ref tag that link to the main text (i.e., footnotes), whereas references are an unlinked list of authorities. The sections I have changed only contain footnotes.
Third: I agree with you that, in practice, "References" is often used as the heading for footnotes. So, to that extent, it is "well established." However, it violates both Wikipedia:Layout#Standard appendices and descriptions and Wikipedia:Guide to layout#Notes and I fail to see why correcting those errors is anything but an improvement to Wikipedia.
Finally: I am a little disappointed that you went back and reverted a number of my changes without giving me a fair opportunity to respond to your claim that "References" is the correct heading for footnotes. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 11:48, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
As noted, in each of the cases of reviewed (and reverted/rollbacked), the sub-heading consisted only of references (as in material between <ref>...</ref> tags. In this case I believe it very clearly matches unless some of the footnotes are notes and not citations. In the 2-3 other cases I left the headings as-altered and I'm happy with those edits.
In this case I chose to act swiftly so that:
  1. Less edit-conflicts would likely occur performing the reversions.
  2. That (what appears to be) non-standard usage does not proliferate
  3. To discourage further alterations in this style.
  4. Based on reading the large prior #References vs Footnotes threads on this talk page, which I note was deleted at the same time as your reply.
Sladen (talk) 14:30, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
In the "second" point I made above I asked you to read Wikipedia:Guide to layout#Notes. I renew that request. And I now add to that request a request that you continue reading into the next section, which is entitled "References." Once you have done that please let me know whether you still maintain that "References" refers to the text generated by the <ref> tag (as opposed to a typed in list). Until we come to some sort of agreement on this fundamental issue then I fear we will not make any progress on resolving our other differences. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 20:35, 24 June 2008 (UTC)
See also the sections at the end of Wikipedia:Featured article criteria for an example of the difference between "Notes" and "References." Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 13:57, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

Layout edits

I see others have expressed concerns about the changes to WP:LAYOUT. I just want to add a friendly suggestion about the importance of keeping guideline and policy pages as clear and correct as possible; your recent responses on that page have shown some defensiveness which won't help get the page to where it needs to be, so I hope you'll focus on the work and lower the defensive reactions to critiques of the work. The page needs work; that need probably predates your changes, but work is needed nonetheless, and giving Tony time to take a closer look will help. In the meantime, some of the recent additions are simply incorrect or unclear, and every editor who bases a choice on what is written there now may be messing up an article. Regards, SandyGeorgia (Talk) 16:46, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

Well, we see what we want to see. The concerns expressed in the above section do NOT deal with changes to WP:LAYOUT. Rather, they deal with changes to other articles.
While I appreciate whatever guidance you care to offer, I respectfully suggest that interjecting the loaded word "defensiveness" into the conversation is not the best way to develop a friendly relationship.
I also appreciate your recognition on this page (if not on the Layout talk page) that only "some" of the recent changes need to be fixed. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 16:58, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
You might consider archiving your talk page instead of deleting past entries; as far as I can tell, your alterations to Layout don't have consensus, and several have apparently found them disruptive. I suspect you'll find that the LAYOUT guideline page will work out fine if you take care with wikilawyering a simple issue; reverting the page is the quickest way back to a starting place from which a better page can be written to incorporate any concerns, but arguing semantics is only likely to irritate collaborators. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 19:27, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
Again, I appreciate your guidance. Again, I wonder why you choose to use loaded words (e.g., "wikilawyering") to deliver your messages. Sometimes semantics are important. For example, "several" usually means more than two (e.g., more than Sandy & Tony - and I am not even sure that Tony is all that irritated by my alterations). Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 19:58, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
Off-topic: If I wave my hand, does that absolutely, definitely make more than two?. —Sladen (talk) 20:06, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
Well, it makes it two for sure. I certainly don't mean to make edits to the Layout article (or any article for that matter) that are "disruptive," can you give me an example of one that I made to the Layout article that you believe falls into that category? (P.S. Can I look forward to a response from you to the last entry I made to the conversation we were having in the prior section?) Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 22:19, 26 June 2008 (UTC)
I've just noticed this after posting below. It would be great if it's not an "us and them" situation. TONY (talk) 13:19, 27 June 2008 (UTC)
Sandy, thank you for applying your expertise to clean up and improve my recent modification of wp:footnotes. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 18:03, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
I actually think that whole new addition (not yours) is unfortunate, but ... oh well :-) SandyGeorgia (Talk) 18:12, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
I'll leave it to you and other Wikipedia mavens to pass judgment on the merits of the various ways of generating embedded footnotes. That said, the introductory paragraph in the new addition to wp:footnotes is helpful for those (e.g., me) who are not well versed on the difference between "references" and "notes". Accordingly, that paragraph should stay even if the decision is made to remove the rest of the section. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 21:03, 29 June 2008 (UTC)
It's slowly getting better (it's a Wiki :-) but it troubles me when a referencing technique is discussed in so many different places; typical of the mess on our MoS pages, and I'm sorry that Tony is so busy in real life just as LAYOUT and FN need cleaning up. I don't attempt wordsmithing often, since my prose sucks, but I do try to keep everyone on the same page. Oh, well :-) SandyGeorgia (Talk) 21:15, 29 June 2008 (UTC)

your opinion

Looking at the Layout section on the lead, I wonder whether it's entirely consistent with Wikipedia:Lead_section#Bold_title:

"If the topic of an article has no commonly accepted name, and the title is simply descriptive — like Electrical characteristics of dynamic loudspeakers, Effect of Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans, or List of schools in Marlborough, New Zealand — the title does not need to appear verbatim in the main text; if it does happen to appear, it need not be boldface"

See this, too.

Do you think the Layout guide in this respect might (1) have links to these bits, and (2) contain a bit more detail? TONY (talk) 13:16, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

I'm sorry, but I genuinely don't understand what you are saying to me or why. Are you talking about the lead section of the Layout article? While I did propose adding a sentence at the end, that was before WillowW made extensive changes that included solving the problem that I was trying to solve. Regardless, please accept my apology for my slow-wittedness with respect to your comment. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 13:31, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

Sheesh, you go to sleep for a few hours and look what happens. I was coming to tell you about last night's development, of an undocumented new and experimental ref sytem, see Wikipedia talk:FAC#New references feature. That new documentation works (I'd like to see it clarified more over time with examples, if the system sticks), but may be a bit premature, since this is a system that wasn't discussed anywhere on Wiki until it appeared on a featured article ... just wanted to keep you in the loop, since this is partly why I was holding off on finalizing some of that writing. I hope others will add more clarity at WP:FN over time, but it's not clear to me this is an accepted system of referencing yet, since it was added to two featured articles before it has wide acceptance. I guess this is going to have to get sorted more quickly now. SandyGeorgia (Talk) 14:41, 27 June 2008 (UTC)

Butwhat: Above I'm referring to the section on the lead section in WP:Layout. The one I've just had a go at. I'm thinking it needs to be consistent with those other sections I've linked here. TONY (talk) 05:37, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
So you are asking for my opinion about the lead on the Layout article? Golly, I am VERY flattered. But the reality is that I am not much of an expert (as demonstrated by my many recent inadvertent editing faux pas). What I am is a one-trick pony who would like to see consistency between style guides (e.g., between the Layout article that distinguishes between "Notes" and "References" and the Footnotes article that doesn't.) And, yes, I am a "fiddler" who is not hesitant to edit text if I think my edit makes the text clearer.
That said, I love to give my opinion whether or not I have any particular expertise. So, in answer to your question: Yes, I agree that the lead to the Layout article could be improved by making the changes you suggest. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 12:24, 28 June 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I'll link those sections, I think, rather than duplicating the full exceptions. TONY (talk) 04:08, 30 June 2008 (UTC)

Commentary on layout

But, thank you for your very patient and soothing manner; you would make a good consulting physician as you have the appropriate "bedside" approach. I certainly enjoy discussing/conversing with others like yourself in this Wikywacky world which we presently inhabit. FWiW Bzuk (talk) 18:23, 8 August 2008 (UTC).

Well, garsh, thanks. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 18:29, 8 August 2008 (UTC)

Transclude Text idea

It looks great; the real problems now (and lately) are over at WP:CITE. Everytime I look at what has happened to it in the last few months, I want to cry. After all, Layout is only cosmetics, but WP:V is policy. Citation matters. Anyway, nice work at Layout. Best, SandyGeorgia (Talk) 02:55, 17 August 2008 (UTC)

Thank you for the kind words. I'm still new at this so, for now, I'll continue to work on Layout. Once I get my confidence level up I can turn my attention to more meaningful guides. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 11:53, 17 August 2008 (UTC)


But what, your last post at talk:lead inadvertently chopped some of my text ... I have an eye infection and reading is miserable ... would you mind going back and fixing it so I don't have to negotiate it? Thx, SandyGeorgia (Talk) 19:39, 17 September 2008 (UTC)

Sorry about that. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 20:27, 17 September 2008 (UTC)
Thanks! I could see what happened but my eye just hurt too much to deal with getting the pieces back in the right place. The antibiotic eyedrops kicked in really fast though! SandyGeorgia (Talk) 03:24, 18 September 2008 (UTC)


Oregon DEM relief map.png You are invited to join WikiProject Oregon, a WikiProject dedicated to improving articles related to the U.S. state of Oregon. You received this invitation because of your history editing Oregon articles or discussion of Oregon topics. The Oregon WikiProject group discussion is here.
If you are interested in joining, please visit the project page, and add your name to the list of participants. New members may read about existing members and introduce themselves here.

EncMstr (talk) 17:07, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Thank you kindly, but I am pretty much a one-trick pony (Shirley Adele Field) vis-a-vis Oregon history. The other changes I have made to Oregon articles are just copy edits and such. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 17:23, 29 December 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for entertaining the idea. Maybe you could add the project talk page WT:ORE to your watchlist and see if any items arising might interest you. Last week saw quite a flurry of activity creating Alcohol in Oregon and Cannabis in Oregon. There is an ongoing effort to get some Portland area stream articles to GA/FA level: Columbia Slough, Balch Creek, Columbia River, Johnson Creek (Willamette River), and Fanno Creek. Any and all copyedits and comments are welcome! Thanks, —EncMstr (talk) 17:36, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

Bold title linking guideline

WP:LS formerly contained a guideline contraindicating linking in bold titles. I cannot find such now. I was able to isolate disappearance to an edit of yours on 00:04, 28 September 2008, but have not been able to identify anything further, relocated or otherwise. Can you advise? Thanks. ENeville (talk) 01:51, 6 January 2009 (UTC)

Sorry for the delay, I am on the road and have limited internet access. I am sure I had a very good reason to remove the contraindication. I am just not sure what it was. My guess is that my reason was either (a) the contraindication was then expressed somewhere else or (b) I am an idiot. In either case, I would certainly have no objection to the contraindication being restored. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 08:31, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
No apology necessary. There's more to life than Wikipedia, after all. I'd sort of rather someone more active on WP:Lead restore it, but I will if necessary. ENeville (talk) 02:57, 16 January 2009 (UTC)

Internal links

Re this edit if you go to the target of the redirect and click on the section title in the TOC, you can then copy the direct link to the section into the link in the other article, eg diff. This allows you to avoid linking to redirects, which slows things down for readers. Tim Vickers (talk) 22:17, 10 February 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the tip! Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 00:51, 11 February 2009 (UTC)
The other useful editing tip is to go the "My preferences" then the "Gadgets" tab and turn on wikEd. This adds a little pencil icon in the top right of your screen. Clicking this while the editing window is open formats the article to put ref, templates and text in different colours. Very useful. Tim Vickers (talk) 18:50, 11 February 2009 (UTC)
Wow. I feel like Dorothy landing in Oz. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 23:51, 11 February 2009 (UTC)

Manual archiving

Just FYI: manually archiving an item on a page that's normally archived by a bot involves cutting the text off the one page and pasting it into the other. It's trivially easy. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:35, 14 February 2009 (UTC)

Thanks. There is always something to learn (and then forget and then relearn). Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 02:43, 14 February 2009 (UTC)

re: consensus

yeah, that's what was meant. thanks for catching that. Face-smile.svg --Ludwigs2 01:33, 28 February 2009 (UTC)

Well, thank you for thanking me. (You are, of course, welcome.) Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 01:43, 28 February 2009 (UTC)

Robert Heinlein

See now, that's exactly what I was getting at. [1] There's a long article with a huge forest of non-wiki stuff toward the bottom. But suddenly, for those who've had the patience to keep scrolling, right there at the bottom is all that you might want to know about Hugos, Heinlein's works, Starship Troopers (well not so much that, I recognize only the novel :) It's the precise definition - "related information" - that awesome sideways stuff, rather than interspersed links in the article text, it's the structured links at the bottom that help you to focus and explore a topic. I love that stuff, it deserves to be in the TOC - methinks. Our casual readership has no idea there's great links down at the bottom.

Do be careful though, no more than a thousand at a time. We don't want backlashing. :) Franamax (talk) 11:52, 14 March 2009 (UTC)

O.k., I've got my marching orders. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 15:25, 14 March 2009 (UTC)

Editing against consensus

I note you were already warned (and blocked) for editing against consensus. If you continue to add a header you invented and approved, instead of seeking consensus, I'll personally open a discussion about this on WP:AN/I. This particularly since it could be argued that you are defacing featured articles. Dahn (talk) 17:46, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Butwhat responds

Dahn, you are suggesting demanding that I seek consensus before editing articles to add a "Related information" heading. Your first point in support of that demand is that I have previously been warned and blocked for "editing against consensus." This is wrong in two respects: First, I was blocked for edit warring. Second, the dispute for which I was blocked (the format, not the content, of a warning box) was between myself and ONE other editor (after the block that editor invited me to take the dispute to the talk page to see what the consensus would be, which I elected to not do). Your second point is that I am acting inappropriately by making an edit without first seeking consensus. This argument appears to be contrary to wp:CCC. Your third point is to threaten me with a discussion on AN/I. I suppose this is based on your belief that I am acting inappropriately. Can you cite the policy or guideline that I have failed to comply with? Your final point is to say that it "could be argued" that I am defacing featured articles. Unfortunately, you do not actually make that argument. I look forward to discussing your concerns regarding the drawbacks you find with the "Related information" heading elsewhere on this talk page. Whatever they are, I suspect that they are far from universally shared. I base this opinion on the fact that (as you note) I have added the heading to a number of featured articles - including at least one that was the article of the day on the day I made the edit - and have received very little resistance (until, that is, now) to the change. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 19:26, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Discussion between Dahn and Franamax

Well if you wish to go to ANI, do please inform me as well. You might want to get your facts straight too. Bwdik neither invented nor approved the section header and in fact consensus has been sought. Nothing prevents its addition to articles, but you are welcome to join the discussion. I would welcome your explanation of how internal links should go in the External links section. Discussion of exactly when to use the heading is also appreciated.
I do agree though that the heading should not necessarily be used in Featured Articles, since they are supposed to conform with current MOS guidelines. Beyond that, it's up to the article editors as to whether or not the new section improves the article. Franamax (talk) 18:21, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
I don't believe that the current MOS guidelines (including wp:layout) prohibit a "Related information" heading. I would welcome a cite from you or from Dahn to the contrary. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 19:32, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
No, I won't fall for that. There any many things the layout guidelines don't say - in fact, everything but the things they do say. It's the latter which are relevant. Dahn (talk) 19:40, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
I apologize if I led you to believe I was laying a trap. You are threatening me with dire consequences for acting inappropriately. I am just trying to figure out what I am doing wrong. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 19:44, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
You are introducing a faux standard based on a unilateral interpretation, without due process and against consensus. I am not threatening you, I am letting you know that this is a standard consequence. Dahn (talk) 20:10, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
Is there a consensus that "Related information" is a bad idea? Where and when was that reached? If not then wp:BRD seems to apply. What is your source for saying that "due process" is required before an edit is made? Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 20:32, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
Actually, what prevents its addition is the layout guideline. And consensus may have been sought, but it doesn't look like it was obtained (If anything, because I reacted against it. And if I may quote you: "Do be careful though, no more than a thousand at a time. We don't want backlashing. :)").
"I would welcome your explanation of how internal links should go in the External links section." - am I saying that? is anyone saying that? It is generally understood that templates, like infoboxes, are outside the article, and it is the article which has a final "external links" section, while a templates section pushes them into the article; or are you gentlemen proposing an infobox section as well? Might I also note how impractical the consequences are: on one hand, you admit that articles should have a separate section for templates; on the other, you admit that this shouldn't "always" happen. What I'm saying is that it is never needed, and is based on a misinterpretation of what templates are. In the light of that, it should never be useful. It may be an answer to a personal preference or to boredom, but it is never a "must". Introducing a habit we can all do without, which you yourself admit might as well not be universally applied (as long as it is used in articles you care about, I presume) is remarkably myopic. We can all live with abstention from this habit; creating it while admitting it shouldn't be universal will have as its only real consequence the most sterile debates. Dahn (talk) 18:41, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Is "Related information" heading a good idea?

If you want info in the article, write it in the article. The templates don't form part of the text, and the idea that they should just because you're not satisfied with the text is counterproductive and illogical. It also looks like a "read me! read me! don't read the article, read me!". It's The Mother of All Bad Ideas. Dahn (talk) 17:48, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

Well yes, in a way it is a "readme" notice. The intent (beyond a logical separation of article elements) is to make clear to the casual reader that there is a wealth of information on-wiki related to the article subject. Typically this is not material that belongs in the article itself. For instance we use category links to allow the user to navigate to related topics. We use a compass-looking thing in city articles so that the reader can see what is north-east of the city. We provide a navbox in articles on books so that the author's collected works can be accessed. We provide a navbox in articles on artists to reference the genre they worked in. All these are useful, none belong in the article itself - and all are useless if the casual reader doesn't know they exist. Currently, nothing at all on a long page indicates that there is such information at the bottom of the article, in fact the TOC specifically says it doesn't exist - the last section is the External links! Franamax (talk) 18:31, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
1. By adding a header you make the templates part of the article. They are not. 2. Unless the reader is a moron and is not aware of the scrolling function (in any case, wikipedia is not a how to for that), the templates will be accessed as discreet as that should happen. And what's next on this slippery slope? Messages telling people that there is relevant info at the middle of the article, or immediately after the introductory section? "Click me" on images and internal links? 3. What you are proposing actually pushes templates over prose in relative importance, assuming that readers aren't able to cope with the latter, and telling them "we know what you're really looking for". 4. Per point 1, I don't know under what definition the ToC can be said to include elements outside of the text - the reader doesn't see them there because they shouldn't be there. Dahn (talk) 19:01, 21 March 2009 (UTC)]

Part of the article

Dahn, if you will let me, I'd like to work through your concerns one by one. First, can you tell me more about the "part of the article" "not part of the article" distinction. Can you point me to a policy, guideline, or essay that will help me understand this distinction and why it is important. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 19:41, 21 March 2009 (UTC)

As I have said, I won't fall for that - there is no single guideline preventing me from adding "read more below" at the end of each paragraph or "click me" next to each picture, but that doesn't mean I can. It's easy to obscure my arguments by opening up section after section. What you are doing here is effectively imposing a guideline without following the necessary steps: you post something on a talk page without even waiting for significant feedback, make random modifications on a few pages as your first contributions there, and expect people to treat this as if it is a new rule. I have given you plenty of reasons why the modification shouldn't happen; if there should be some significant discussion somewhere prominent, with resulting consensus, and mine should prove to be a minority view in such a context, I shan't be fighting it. In the meantime, please don't assume that I have the energy and nothing better to do than to get dragged into an endless conversation just because I took issue with a unilateral move. Dahn (talk) 20:06, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
Well, would you at least tell me what you would consider to be "somewhere prominent" where the significant discussion you believe is required should take place? I'll be happy to resume this conversation there. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 20:12, 21 March 2009 (UTC)
Oh, now I see where you are coming from. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 20:30, 30 March 2009 (UTC)

Re: reverts

I think Dahn's outlined a variety of reasons why that header is a terrible idea; also, aren't there more productive uses of one's time than going around adding a header no one's asked for and no one's indicated would serve anyone any better? Building actual content into the encyclopedia seems so much more worthwhile. Regardless, I suppose I am sorry for the curt nature of my edit summaries, but before this bacillus spreads any further, if you really feel the need to inject it into so many articles, why not seek more exposure at, say. ANI first? - Biruitorul Talk 01:47, 22 March 2009 (UTC)

Unfortunately, Dahn isn't willing to talk about his concerns. I am promoting this concept (which another editor initially proposed) because I believe it would serve folks better (as outlined at User:Butwhatdoiknow/Related information#Benefits). I hope you will forgive me if I find your apology to be less than heartfelt. I am making an RfC. (At least I think I am making an RfC. The procedure for starting an RfC isn't particularly clear.) Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 02:27, 22 March 2009 (UTC)
Online, one can't put on sackcloth: I've said I'm sorry and if you don't believe me, I can't do anything about it. Dahn happens to be in the middle of polishing up a huge article on Antonescu (the sort of content-building activity that's far more useful to the project) and probably finds your proposal frivolous, as do I. As RfC is a rather sterile process, I think we'll all be best served by bringing this to ANI and looking for consensus there. - Biruitorul Talk 03:32, 22 March 2009 (UTC)

Notification of AN/I thread regarding your edits.

Please see this thread regarding your 'related information' resectioning of articles. ThuranX (talk) 04:18, 22 March 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for the alert. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 12:37, 22 March 2009 (UTC)
The rest of the story: As it turns out, ANI was the wrong place for the discussion and it was terminated before the parties completed their discussion and reached consensus. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 22:25, 30 March 2009 (UTC)


I blocked this user for three days. Slrubenstein | Talk 22:05, 11 April 2009 (UTC)

And thank you for that. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 22:05, 11 April 2009 (UTC)

Thanks, Butwhatdoiknow for the clean-up work. --KP Botany (talk) 22:17, 11 April 2009 (UTC)

Looks like you did the heavy lifting. But I'll take the "assist" credit. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 22:32, 11 April 2009 (UTC)

Village pump thread

Hello. I think this thread will be of some interest to you. - Biruitorul Talk 02:13, 24 April 2009 (UTC)

AfD nomination of Introduction to evolution

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An editor has nominated one or more articles which you have created or worked on, for deletion. The nominated article is Introduction to evolution. We appreciate your contributions, but the nominator doesn't believe that the article satisfies Wikipedia's criteria for inclusion and has explained why in his/her nomination (see also Wikipedia:Notability and "What Wikipedia is not").

Your opinions on whether the article meets inclusion criteria and what should be done with the article are welcome; please participate in the discussion(s) by adding your comments to Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Introduction to evolution (3rd nomination). Please be sure to sign your comments with four tildes (~~~~).

You may also edit the article during the discussion to improve it but should not remove the articles for deletion template from the top of the article; such removal will not end the deletion debate.

Please note: This is an automatic notification by a bot. I have nothing to do with this article or the deletion nomination, and can't do anything about it. --Erwin85Bot (talk) 01:19, 6 December 2009 (UTC)

Related information

Funny (as in funny-strange) that just when I noticed you working a bit on the WP-space page, at the exact same time I would edit my way to Inuit. It uses {{Navboxes}}, which has the default title of "Links to related articles". This gets us at least half-way to the goal of recognizing "umm, nav templates, categories and interwiki links are internal, not external links. I still think it should have a section of its own though, and really the "See also"'s should go down there too. OTOH, I still haven't tried the print function as an anon user to see if an empty section gets printed. Just commenting... Franamax (talk) 03:46, 30 December 2009 (UTC)

Yikes, talk about hide the ball! While it does separate the boxes from the external links it is even less helpful to the casual reader than the current "majority" set up. Butwhatdoiknow (talk) 22:57, 8 January 2010 (UTC)