User talk:Iridescent/Archive 10

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Jesus College Boat Club (Oxford)

Copyedit request

Any chance that you (or one of your talk-page stalkers) could look over the prose at Jesus College Boat Club (Oxford)? I've put it up for peer review here to see what comments I get about whether it's a potential FA, and given your skills with getting smaller articles to FA, you might be just the person. </crawl> Regards, and thanks for any help you can give. No rush. BencherliteTalk 16:12, 27 March 2009 (UTC)

Will do; am going to be quite busy so it may not be for a couple of days. Something I can see straight off is that you might want to rename the subheads of the References section "References" and "Bibliography" and swap the order (see Noel Park for example) – "General references" and "Specific references" look odd to me. To someone like me who knows nothing about rowing, the lead seems a bit incomprehensible as well – I know every bit of jargon is linked to an explanation, but it makes it a bit choppy to read – would it be possible to reword it (for example, "Neither the men's nor the women's 1st VIIIs have ever been Head of the River during Eights Week, the main inter-college rowing competition…"  "Neither the men's or women's teams have ever won the main inter-college rowing competition…"), or would that distort the meaning too much? – iridescent 16:52, 27 March 2009 (UTC)
After further looking over it, I think it's very close – although that's with the proviso that I know nothing whatsoever about rowing so can't comment on the technical side of things. I'm going to say something that will likely get me shouted at by Sandy, and suggest that – given that the peer review has stalled – possibly the best thing you could do is take it to FAC now. If it passes, then all well and good; if there are any issues remaining unresolved, then the "death by a thousand nitpicks" group at FAC are actually exactly the sort of people you want involved in something like this. Giano's essay has the FA process spot-on – as long as you don't lose your temper at the occasional just-plain-weird comment, most people at FAC are genuinely trying to help, and will generally do all they can to help an "almost there" article over the line. – iridescent 17:26, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

Jesus College Boat Club (Oxford)

Thanks for your tweaks of this article - any other thoughts before I take a deep breath and take a stab at FAC? Regards, BencherliteTalk 20:59, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

Not sure if you've seen my (belated) comments on the earlier thread; with the major disclaimer that I know nothing about rowing so can't comment at all on the technical side, I think it looks fine. As long as you're prepared for people potentially being rude about it, I think it's good enough to go to FAC; even if it fails, chances are the process will flush out people who are willing and able to improve it. I'm not aware of any similar articles at FA level, so there's nothing really to compare it to. – iridescent 21:03, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
No, hadn't spotted that. Juliancolton couldn't find much to tweak, and The Rambling Man gave it a thorough going-over for GA status, so it's not too bad I hope. I've just eBayed a couple of old college magazines (1939 and 1960), so will see whether there's anything else to add from there, and I'll raid my old photos! Thanks once again - see you in the bearpit, perhaps...
If you haven't already, it might be worth asking the club themselves regarding photos. Anything published pre-1923 can be uploaded to en-wikipedia (not Commons); for still-in-copyright material, they may well be willing to release something into the public domain (it's free advertising for them, after all). – iridescent 21:15, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
Good idea, although I'm still annoyed that they've ripped off the article for their website without giving credit! BencherliteTalk 21:47, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
Look on it as an endorsement… – iridescent 21:49, 20 April 2009 (UTC)
Swapped emails with the club secretary today, who can't help much, but who has now added "source:" to the page in question! Thanks for your provisional support, btw - no nasty shocks so far... BencherliteTalk 20:21, 21 April 2009 (UTC)
Congratulations! – iridescent 20:47, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
Thank you! BencherliteTalk 22:36, 1 May 2009 (UTC)
I think that's a really good result. Well done Bencherlite! And of course congrats on the FA as well. --Malleus Fatuorum 23:52, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Tunnel Railway

Hi Iridescent. It was submitted to WP:GAN on 13 March 2009 and I read it in full on Friday evening (27th March 2009). I noticed from my watch list earlier this evening, when I was intending to do the review, that you had undertaken five edits this afternoon. As you say these are the first changes since 1 March 2009. I have no objections at all to you editing the article; but I don't see why I should review an article that is in the middle of being changed. It was flaged up as being under review when you started copyediting it. The criteria are here: WP:Good article criteria, but I'm happy to accept that (lack of) stability is not due to content dispute and/or edit wars. Let me know when you have finished editing it and I will restart the GAN review. P.S. I was particularly interested in the article; and you have a link to SubBrit's webpage (1984 & 1997) visits. I was there on the 1984 one.Pyrotec (talk) 20:30, 30 March 2009 (UTC)

The only changes were ultra-cosmetic – splitting the "previous stations" into subheadings to stop it being so dominant, and reworing one sentence to avoid the problem-word "economical"; aside from that there was no substantive change at all. Sorry if I came across as snappy, but you can rest assured that the article is stable – as I said, aside from the initial creation, there's not a single change in the entire history that isn't cosmetic. (I don't suppose you have any photos from the SubBrit visit? At the moment, all the photos on there other than the seafront are fair-use; a picture of the inside of the tunnel would be great.) – iridescent 21:39, 30 March 2009 (UTC)
So far, I have found one box of colour transparencies labelled "Dover II, June '84", the last nine frames of which were taken in the railway / air raid shelters at "Folkstone". There must also be a box III (and possibly box IV) as a lot were taken over that weekend; which included Dover, Folkstone, Ramsgate and Margate. Whether I can scan any of the Ramsgate slides, when I find them, to produce usable images is another matter. They will not be not in the same league as Nick Catford's photos, who produces excellent images using multiple lighting sources. In those days I just used one large flash gun and the fastest transparency stock (sometimes/often 500 ASA) that I could get hold off.Pyrotec (talk) 19:47, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
It shouldn't be a problem – as you say, Nick Catford's images are excellent quality, and I've included a link to the main SubBrit gallery at the end of the article for anyone who wants to know more. The current version includes two fair-use images, but I think they're clearly a legitimate use as (obviously) neither the railway in operation, nor the tunnel in use as a wartime shelter, can be replicated today. It would be nice to have at least one free use photo of some kind on there (there are a few free-use photos of the old Ramsgate Harbour station floating about, but none I can find of the Tunnel Railway in operation) – but I'm not going to lose sleep over it. (As you may have seen, I've now sent it to FAC, which generally triggers a trial-by-ordeal for any fair use images, so that will resolve the image issues one way or the other. Initially I didn't intend to take this one as far as FAC, but seeing as its near-twin Hellingly Hospital Railway passed recently, there's no reason this one shouldn't. Iridescent :  Chat  19:54, 1 April 2009 (UTC)
Any use?
.Pyrotec (talk) 20:23, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
Absolutely. If it's all right with you, I'm going to ask Durova – who's probably our best "image rescuer" – if she has any thoughts about cleaning it up and fixing the colour balance (it might actually work better in black and white). – iridescent 21:32, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
I saw this on my watchlist and figured I'd have a shot. Any better? — neuro(talk)(review) 21:51, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
Looks good, although the color balance is still a bit funny. Incidentally, do you (Pyrotec) know exactly what it shows – is it the Hereson Road tunnel entrance? – iridescent 21:54, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
NB: Request here, so any suggestions are likely to appear there. – iridescent 22:00, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
I've had another shot, but Durova is right about how much work can be done. The new image is certainly sharper, but I don't think I've sorted the WB issue. — neuro(talk)(review) 22:08, 3 April 2009 (UTC)
I've added a PNG version at thumb. Sorry that was the first and only time that I had been to Ramsgate. I remember going in at road-level at a busy place. We went down some steps and explored the big tunnel, small tunnel and the air raid shelters. Interestingly, the public steps down to the air raid shelter were still in situ, but just covered by concrete beams. Through the joints, I could see and hear people working over the tops of the beams. When we came out I noticed the beams in the pavement. I will try and find a "surface" photograph - but I'm not sure if I took any.Pyrotec (talk) 09:55, 5 April 2009 (UTC)
Having re-read the article to see what you are asking: it is a photograph taken underground, and it is (I believe) the junction between the original 1860s London, Chatham and Dover Railway railway tunnel and the new new-bore 1930s tunnel.Pyrotec (talk) 14:46, 5 April 2009 (UTC)
Nick has a better on here: [1], second one down.Pyrotec (talk) 15:09, 5 April 2009 (UTC)

Many thanks to Durova


Many thanks to Durova for above-and-beyond work in cleaning the image up; this is exactly what the article needed to illustrate both the relative smallness of the tunnel and its post-closure condition. Thanks to you, of course, for providing the original image! – iridescent 14:50, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

Tunnel Railway

As requested, I will have a look at this shortly. --DavidCane (talk) 02:53, 6 April 2009 (UTC)

Thanks – no rush at all. – iridescent 12:19, 6 April 2009 (UTC)
Been a busy week. I finally got around to reviewing the article and have left some comments on the FAC page. Looks good.--DavidCane (talk) 23:17, 12 April 2009 (UTC)
Thanks! As I said, you're probably the best placed to comment on the topic, so are far more likely to spot issues. – iridescent 18:52, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

Congratulations, job done![2] --Malleus Fatuorum 00:08, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

I feel a bit of a fraud slipping one that short through, it has to be said. Now for Bruce Castle to hopefully fill in the second of the requisite FAs on the Moselle Valley; that should bring give the six articles the requisite 33% FAs. Then, it's just a case of getting White Hart Lane up to scratch (shouldn't be too hard – someone must have written a book on it!) before revisiting A Certain Council Estate Whose Article Has Caused Problems In The Past (that one will be epic if/when it finally happens) and River Moselle itself, which I suspect will be the hardest of the lot. – iridescent 14:55, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

Congratulations on achieving featured article for your article - That's put Ramsgate on the map. Thanks again for your support for Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway; unfortunately it was not enough and its candidacy was closed without it being promoted. There weren't any major issues raised with the article so I will renominate it again in a while, and hopefully it will attract a bit more support. --DavidCane (talk) 21:42, 19 April 2009 (UTC)

Thanks. You might want to ask Karanacs or Sandy to consider reopening GNPBR – I appreciate it had been up a while, but closing with no opposes and every issue that had been raised resolved seems rather harsh. – iridescent 21:48, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
I think I can understand why it was closed. FACs need at least three or four supports without opposes, but they're unlikely to get them if the article is written like a school essay. FAs have got to be written in a way that at least encourages attention, if not grabs it. I think that if a decent copyeditor spent a few hours on it the GNPBR would get through FAC pretty easily next time. I'm not trying to hurt anyone's feelings, just saying it as I see it. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:02, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
It might be because I'm familiar with the topic (this is the line that ran to Noel Park, so I now know more than I ever wanted to about it), but I don't see it as particularly essay-like. From experience, it's virtually impossible to make a disused railway line particularly interesting as there's so much technical gobbledegook that needs to be included, and this did as good a job as any. – iridescent 22:05, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
If it's the best online source of information on the GNPBR, which I'm quite happy to believe that it is, then why does FA matter? To get through FAC the article needs to be well presented. If that's not considered important in this case then so be it, the article will never be a FA. That the information has now been brought together in the comprehensive way that it has is arguably all that really matters. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:23, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
I believe I may have made similar comments about FA on occasion and (without wishing to second-guess David) I suspect his reason for taking it to FAC is the same reason you're seeing my trolley-pole electrified rail lines and Haringey buildings there; given Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/City & South London Railway and Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/Charing Cross, Euston and Hampstead Railway it looks like he's building a Featured Topic on former London Underground lines, and one needs a minimum 33% of articles at FA status to qualify as an FT. (Dispiritingly, that means that if I do the London bridges, that means having to get at least seven of them to FA.) – iridescent 22:37, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
You have, and I may perhaps once have done so as well. But my view for some time now has been that unless an article is submitted for an independent review at either FA or GA then you're just guessing as to its quality. Neither is a guarantee, but they're at least useful checks. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:59, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
Yes and no – there are some articles at FA/GA of highly dubious quality (Central Communications Command, anyone?) and some very high quality articles that would be ripped to shreds at FA (a lot of Giano's spring to mind). And don't get me started on WP:FP. That said, and even though Sandy will take exception to my saying it, I do think one of the great strengths of the FA process is as a mechanism for prompting people who wouldn't ordinarily have become involved, to make improvements (see my comments a couple of threads up). – iridescent 23:12, 19 April 2009 (UTC)
Iridescent has correctly discerned my aim - a Featured topic on the early tube lines. The C&SLR and CCE&HR are already FA, the GNP&BR is next, hopefully, followed by a full article for the Baker Street and Waterloo Railway. This would cover all three of the tube lines built by the Underground Electric Railways Company (UERL) plus the C&SLR which was the first of the tubes. I might then expand it to include the Central London Railway which would bring all of the tube lines owned by the company together. Then I might even go for a GA on Lord Ashfield and add him and Edgar Speyer (already FA) to the set with the UERL article as the linking piece.
I have just posted the GNP&BR article for a GA review to get some more comments before I put it back in for FAC again.
I agree that the GNP&BR article is rather technical but it was the most complicated of the UERL's lines in terms of history and the most ambitious in terms of the number of alternative routes planned. The Baker Street and Waterloo Railway article should be a bit more exciting as the company was originally started by Whitaker Wright who was a bit of a Bernard Madoff and ended up taking cyanide when he was found guilty of fraud. --DavidCane (talk) 01:43, 25 April 2009 (UTC)

← Incidentally, I don't know if you're only doing the deep-level tube lines but I noticed while doing Wandsworth Bridge that we don't even have a stub for Hammersmith and City Railway (it's just a redirect to Hammersmith and City line, which itself doesn't mention the predecessor line), which seems a really glaring omission. – iridescent 22:16, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Four Award

Four Award.PNG Four Award
Congratulations! You have been awarded the Four Award for your work all through on Tunnel Railway.

TomasBat 20:17, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

Thanks! – iridescent 20:53, 20 April 2009 (UTC)

List of Sony/ATV Music Publishing artists

This article is coming along, as is the article on Sony/ATV. We might finally get an FL on the Wikiproject. — R2 20:01, 29 April 2009 (UTC)

Good lord those are some weird looking pictures. You won't thank me for saying this as it would double the workload, but I think it could do with aat least some biographical information on who the people involved are, especially if you're going for FL status (look at some of the "lists of people" lists at WP:FL to see what I mean – see List of Metallica band members, List of Blue Peter presenters, List of actors nominated for Academy Awards for foreign language performances for example. If you can rustle up some kind of relevant image for everyone, I'd recommend ripping off the format of List of premiers of Prince Edward Island, with "date signed", "date left", "releases" and "musical style" as the categories – it will make a sprawlingly huge article, but far more useful than a straightforward list of names (which is always vulnerable to the "better served by a category" trigger-happy deletionists). – iridescent 21:42, 29 April 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, will take all this on board before we go sailing into the FLC flame pit. Also, I'm working on something. — R2 09:19, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
FYI, for more thoughts on the merits of indefinite semiprotection for high-profile figures, you might want to point people towards User:Lar/Liberal Semi which has become the de facto noticeboard for "BLPs that are sure to get vandalised the moment the protection expires". – iridescent 11:11, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
OK, that is a thought. Also, with templates, it seems like they do not recognize anything after group 20. Who could I speak to about this? An editor wants to make a template for the singles of Prince which requires more than 20 groups. Thanks. — R2 11:57, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
That's one for WP:VPT – I suspect the answer will be "fudge it by using lists within the groups", along the lines of {{The Beatles singles}}. – iridescent 13:42, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
Ah, I see. Maybe he will be happy to do it like that, if not, I can take it to VPT. Cheers. — R2 14:02, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
It would probably be better doing it that way; 20 groups could be too much for some browsers to handle (remember, music articles will probably get a disproportionate number of editors viewing them on iPods). – iridescent 18:52, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Bridge colors

LOL you ar eusing brown on your talk page. I'm not a fan of brown but I thought it was suitable for a wood color. I've changed it to navy blue if you think it clashes. Personally I though it was an earthy color which doesn't usually clash with green and blue. Benetton Dr. Blofeld White cat 19:22, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, but the illustration at the top of my talkpage is deliberately chosen to blend in with the orange-brown/dark pink/white color scheme of the page. As a bridge photo pretty much by definition is going to have pale blue at both the top and bottom, the dark-brown to pale-blue leap is a bit eye-wrenching. Like I said, it's not something I'd lose sleep over. – iridescent 19:27, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Editor review

Hello there. I remembered you from my previous RfA, where you had expressed some concerns and felt that you would be unable to support. I wondered if you could comment on my current editor review, as I feel it would be best to see if those who hadn't thought of me as highly of me five months ago now think I have improved. NuclearWarfare (Talk) (How am I doing?) 20:16, 2 May 2009 (UTC)

Intentionally before actually looking at any of your contributions or reading your talkpage, I've asked a batch of deliberately no-right-answer questions (whatever your answer to every one, will turn someone against you), to get a feel for exactly what your attitude to Wikipedia, its purpose and its internal (dys)functions are. They're all asked on the assumption that you're looking at this from the perspective of a dress-rehearsal RFA, rather than an explicit "how can I improve my writing style" editor review. – iridescent 22:24, 2 May 2009 (UTC)

May Metro

I was just wondering whether you'd be interested in doing the May Metro? You know the newsletter is meant to be monthly but due to other commitments i have been unable to keep to this rota. I cannot do this month's (which is due now). For the sources that need checking, see Wikipedia:WikiProject London Transport/The Metropolitan/sources. If you need any help with the newsletter, just drop me a line. Simply south (talk) 11:42, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

Sure, I'll give it a go but won't be until Wednesday/Thursday. – iridescent 18:37, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Incidentally, I've undone your disambiguation notice on my talkpage – User:Iridescence is effectively a retired user (only 6 edits since the end of January) with no crossover in interests (at least, I'd hope nobody would think my most-edited page was Talk:Indecent exposure). Like many high and high-ish profile users I have a reasonable share of imitators and impersonators; dabbing this user would also mean dabbing the far more active User:Irdicent (5000+ edits and still very active) as well as this rabble of cranks and trolls. – iridescent 19:36, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for above. (So much for that journalism motto "Never reveal your sources"). I think i may have missed some Wikipedia links. If you are unsure on the editorial sections, see User talk:Simply south/February_to_August_2008_archive#The Metropolitan and User talk:Unisouth#Metro. Also i was going to mention about the distinguishment. Simply south (talk) 19:46, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
No problem – as i say, it won't be until Wednesday (I'm just doing a quick pass by at the moment). The existence of the "imitation" accounts is always vaguely irritating to me, but I figure nobody's realistically going to mistake us – it's part of the reason why I always keep to the "branding exercise" of the distinctive colour scheme on everything associated with me. (I get off lightly when it comes to imitators – try running some of our more colourful characters through Special:Listusers.) – iridescent 19:52, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Actually thanks to that i discovered something else which I've made a note on WP:AN although i wonder whether i should have or not. Simply south (talk) 20:41, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
If you get the chance, could you have a read of this thread and the attached lists, and comment at the main discussion at WP:LONDON – I want to see if you think it's a good idea to tag the WPLT items at the same time as the WP:LONDON ones – also, I need a second person to look at the lists of categories to include to make sure I haven't left something in there that shouldn't be. (Besides, the sooner it's done, the sooner I can quick-archive it to stop the talkpage having a foot-long table of contents.) – iridescent 21:43, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

Requests for adminship comment

Hi - Regarding this comment[3] sorry to be the cause of the confusion. I removed my own comments in a huff. [4] after my (hasty and ill considered) attempt to delete some uncivil sniping at me were reverted.[5] So the comments you responded to were directed to me. I didn't go there to be attacked, and if that's the reaction I don't want to participate in that discussion. I'll make a note on the page to make that clear. Wikidemon (talk) 19:35, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

Ah, makes sense now. And this is why we have this policy. See, some of these cryptic policies do exist for a reason… (It has to be said that if you don't want to be the subject of uncivil sniping, the middle of a full-blown flamewar on the most-edited talkpage on Wikipedia with the exception of Talk:Main page is probably not the best place to be standing.) – iridescent 19:46, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm a bit surprised you might have believed I'd directed my "blockhammer" comment at you, but I suppose that Wikidemon's deletions made it look that way. Now that's something I do consider to be a serious breach of etiquette, distorting a discussion in that way. BTW, the way, I take exception to my comment being characterised as "uncivil sniping", but not very much. ;-) --Malleus Fatuorum 22:04, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
It did seem out of character, but stranger things have happened. Given that after two years in abeyance the Great Arbuthnot War has raised its unwelcome head again – with its remarkable ability to turn anyone touched by it into a flaming troll on the most trivial of issues – nothing would surprise me at the moment. – iridescent 22:12, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Yes, I've had half an eye on that (well maybe a quarter at best). Giano was typically quite forthright in what I looked at, and I now see that he's retired. I suppose that many will be rejoicing, but I won't be among them. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:28, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
(buries herself back in medieval bishops) What is it about baronets that's so ... contentious anyway? I've never understood quite why folks get so ... up in arms ... about the whole thing. Okay, it sucks to have folks muck about and move articles about. I've got 1000 or so medieval bishops on my watchlist, rarely does a week go by that someone somwhere doesn't try to "help" by moving an article around. Generally, I just let it go, it's not that big a deal! Ealdgyth - Talk 22:34, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
(Malleus) I doubt he's retired; his wording was "having a break for as long as I can". Personally I think it's sensible of him; last time round he ended up (probably justifiably) blocked, along with most of the participants on both sides. I don't know if you remember last time, but it wasn't a pretty sight. (I had the dubious honour of being in there right from the very beginning; look in my earliest talk archive and do a ctrl-f on "Arbuthnot".) If you want to picture it, imagine every other page on your watchlist having a history like this, every day for six months.
(Ealdgyth) OK, here we go;
Per WP:INHERIT, nobility are not implicitly notable on Wikipedia because of who their parents were, but only because of achievements in their own right. For peers (at least, between 1295-1998) they're automatically notable as members of a national legislature so the issue doesn't arise; "baronet", on the other hand, is a meaningless courtesy title, and it's highly questionable whether they're inherently notable, any more than a movie star's kids are automatically notable. The elephant in the room is that User:Kittybrewster is Sir William Arbuthnot, whose father and brother are notable by Wikipedia standards for other reasons, meaning he's the sole name in the family not to even warrant a redlink – and also maintains a website on the family and created large numbers of articles about his relatives, many of which weren't particularly notable and were deleted, causing huge amounts of bad feeling. (See this for the background.) You did ask… – iridescent 22:50, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Heh. Any site that says "UHTRED, 5th Lord of Bamburgh, Earl of BERNICIA (1006), Earl of NORTHUMBRIA (1006-1016). Killed 1016. Married, first, AECGFRIDA, daughter of AELDHUN, Bishop of Chester-Le-Street and of Durham. Marriage dissolved by divorce." as it does there is so wrong it's not even fun. First, there WERE no earls then. (Ealdorman, maybe. A big maybe). Aeldhun (my .. what a godawful spelling) is actually... Aldhun. Divorce? Uh, yeah, right. He just sorta kicked her out of the house, I'm sure. You can imagine my mirth if someone tried to cite that site at FAC. (As an aside, I actually do genealogy, and can indeed trace my ancestry back that far (and further, actually, but just like on Wiki, I believe in cite cite cite your sources. Most genealogists are much more ... trusting. The spelling of those names tells me someone is probably using a Victorian-era genealogy for the information.) Check out John Carpenter (bishop) for a lovely example of what I see occasionally. For that matter, I spent a few days back when I first joined dealing with User talk:Ealdgyth/Archive 1 some of the same issues relating to Gundred, Countess of Surrey where I got to argue with someone peripheral to the whole KB-VK-Baronet thing. Ealdgyth - Talk 23:26, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
…who turned out to be a trolling sockpuppet. It really was a tangled web back then – AFD/KB was like a spot-the-sock contest. (Surely there were earls that far back? Wasn't Morcar Earl of Northumbria?) – iridescent 23:36, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
(adding) In fact, they'd better have had earls back then, or I have to rewrite all the sections on Waltheof when I start stitching together the Tottenham FT! – iridescent 23:39, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Generally, it's Ealdorman around 1000, Earl by Edward the Confessor's reign. The exact date it changed is sometime during Cnut's reign, probably. (i'm sure I have stuff on it somewhere.. (goes digging)). Ealdgyth - Talk 23:42, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Yep, Blackwell Encyclopedia of Anglo-Saxon England (p. 153) "During the reign of Cnut, the vernacular term 'eorl' begins to replace ealdorman." The office was pretty much the same, just the title is different. Ealdgyth - Talk 23:46, 3 May 2009 (UTC)
Our own article on Uhtred uses "Earl", so I suppose one can't blame KB. (The whole thing reminds me of possibly my favourite ever crackpot "reliable source", from the much-lamented Descent from Adam and Eve article.) – iridescent 23:50, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

Eaton Green

Ten days and two relists after you nominated the above article at AfD, it looks like someone finally came along and massively improved it, adding lots of sources. Just thought you might want to have another look and see if your concerns are alleviated. Cheers ~ mazca t|c 11:10, 4 May 2009 (UTC)


I rarely know what day it is let alone the month! :P --WebHamster 15:32, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Easiest to just stick the tag on undated and let the bots sort it out. – iridescent 15:35, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Wandsworth Bridge

Passed, yet again. Whatever time I spent on this - I want it back. First time I've seen that we agree to agree. Law type! snype? 10:45, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

I should clarify, 'we' working at DYK, agreed to agree on the same thing that we agreed upon with the original hook. In essence, an effort in futility. It's amazing how inference plays such a role when we all seemed to agree on one hook, but for different reasons. Law type! snype? 11:00, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
2 done and 18 to go in cleaning up this category, so you may get a few more – although I only send things to DYK if I think they're genuinely interesting to wider readers, so most of them won't qualify. Iridescent 2 (talk) 14:38, 5 May 2009 (UTC)


User:Irdicent has been renamed User:Anhamirak. Kingturtle (talk) 11:22, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Noted – it wasn't causing ny problems at my end (I suspect if anything it caused more problems for them, as I suspect they were more likely to be mistaken for me) but it probably makes sense. – iridescent 13:48, 5 May 2009 (UTC)


In leaving this message, I couldn't help noticing the FYI immediately above. Interesting. There is a new editor who has been using a name very similar to mine and leaving spam on architecture articles. Amandajm (talk) 06:28, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

Thanks! Gruelling, but I think that whole process actually was an example of how Wikipedia is supposed to work, in that we managed to get that elusive beast "consensus". Speaking of which, I don't know if you've seen the conversation with Johnbod on the article talk page, but do you think it warrants a "floor plan" of the layout of the house? I could certainly create a cited plan, as there's a published plan by Bridget Cherry showing the believed age of each part of the building, but it seems unnecessarily complicated unless there's a demand for it.
Regarding the spammer, I assume you mean Aandjnmr (talk · contribs) – I doubt there's much you can do about it, as it's different enough from you that you can't claim impersonator. I wouldn't worry – impersonators are just one of the things you learn to put up with. – iridescent 16:41, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

DYK for Wandsworth Bridge

Updated DYK query On May 8, 2009, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article Wandsworth Bridge, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.
Gatoclass (talk) 11:07, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

May Metro

As Simply South is busy, I've stepped in for this one; this is my first time, so feel free to fix any mistakes or let me know of anything I've missed. – iridescent 18:09, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

(Yes, I know I'm delivering this to my own talk page – this is for the benefit of those TPSs who read it) – iridescent 18:09, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

It looked good (better than me in some ways but its nice for a change). What you add in the news section is really at your discretion and i will say the same for anyone else that does that one. Simply south (talk) 17:57, 10 May 2009 (UTC)


I just wanted to spread the news. No comment necessary. -- Noroton (talk) 17:33, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

And you are sharing this with me why, exactly? – iridescent 17:37, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Touchy, touchy. I thought people who post at WR might be interested in what can get you accused of being a Nazi and what WR authorities will then do. I thought it was too obvious to explain. Sorry I bothered you. Won't happen again. -- Noroton (talk) 18:15, 8 May 2009 (UTC)

Very quick note

I'll no longer annoy you by splitting conversations. Simply south (talk) 20:58, 10 May 2009 (UTC)

Wandsworth Bridge

Hi, regarding the phrase 'dating from' - this is often used, and it is understood in such usages that the date referred to is the date of completion, not of planning or design. The reason I changed the original wording was to eliminate the repetition of 'opened in'. I'm not wedded to 'dating from' but repeating 'opened in' sounds rather clumsy. An alternative, although inferior in my opinion, would be 'completed in' to replace one of the instances of 'opened in' Dubmill (talk) 17:08, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

Re. your new wording ('Built between ... dating from'). Perfect. Dubmill (talk) 14:52, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Here's the article from The Times I mentioned in my GA review. --DavidCane (talk) 18:15, 4 May 2009 (UTC)

That's a good one – I'll try to work some of that in. At the moment the article (pretty much by definition, as it's describing a drab steel-and-concrete monstrosity) lacks much colour and human interest. I'm deliberately doing the dullest of the 20 bridges first, before I move on to nightmare cleanup jobs like London Bridge – expect such excitements as Twickenham Bridge and Chiswick Bridge shortly. I'll address the rest of the issues you've raised in the GA review when I get the chance.
Wandsworth is a nightmare to source, as both bridges seem to have always been considered an embarrassment best skimmed over by writers – "Wandsworth Bridge merely requires to be mentioned", the full extent of its entry in Cambridge County Geographies, is fairly typical. Iridescent 2 (talk) 14:36, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Congrats. I have passed Wandsworth Bridge as a Good Article. Let me know if you want me to look at the next bridge article you do. Are you aiming for a good topic? Fancy doing a GA review of Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway which is sitting on the Transport list? --DavidCane (talk) 01:45, 7 May 2009 (UTC)

The long term plan is a GT/FT, but with 20 articles if I stick to the road bridges, or 33 if I include the footbridges and railway bridges (and treat the three Hungerford bridges as a single entity), it's very much a long term thing, especially with the prospects of cleaning up the mess of London Bridge and finding something interesting to say about Tower Bridge, which is so iconic that people will expect a long article but beneath the (purely cosmetic) brick shells is a little-used and absolutely bog-standard Victorian bascule bridge. (I'm not even thinking of tunnels at this stage). I'm doing the simple ones first, so expect such excitements as Chiswick Bridge and Twickenham Bridge to follow.
I can have a look at Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway if you want, but I'm a notoriously bad reviewer and haven't really kept up with the GA criteria; there's also an issue in that, although I'd pass it automatically (given that I thought it was ready for FA let alone GA), my passing one of yours immediately after your passing one of mine could look like back-scratching, and could be legitimately challenged by anyone. Personally I'd recommend Pyrotec, who isn't 'tainted' by previous involvement, and is very good with transport articles. – iridescent 11:40, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
Can see it got through – good luck with the FAC, too. I know Malleus didn't agree, but I don't see a problem with the essay-like structure in this case; the constant changing means it's one of those cases where only a straight chronological narrative will work. – iridescent 19:33, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
What didn't I agree with? --Malleus Fatuorum 19:43, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
"FACs need at least three or four supports without opposes, but they're unlikely to get them if the article is written like a school essay. FAs have got to be written in a way that at least encourages attention, if not grabs it." Apologies if I've taken you out of context and/or misunderstood you. – iridescent 20:27, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
Ah, that wasn't a comment on the article's structure, it was with respect to the infamous FAC criterion 1a); "its prose is engaging, even brilliant, and of a professional standard". The prose seems to me to be very pedestrian, which is what I meant by "school essay". --Malleus Fatuorum 20:55, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
From experience, "abandoned railway line" and "brilliant refreshing prose" don't fit snugly; there are just too many boringly technical things that need to be explained and can't be made interesting. – iridescent 20:58, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
I'm not sure I agree with that as a general comment, but specifically with this article I'd argue that there are just too many "boringly technical things", particularly in the way too long Planning the route, 1898–1905 section. Just my opinion of course though, we'll see what the FAC reviewers think. --Malleus Fatuorum 21:19, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
If it were me, I'd split that section into separate "mini articles" about each scheme – but the problem is, they all do need to be mentioned and mentioned in enough detail to differentiate them. There are precedents for this kind of lengthy "different versions" section, even at FAC – look at Boeing 747#Variants for example. – iridescent 21:25, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
That's different versions of things that were built, not things that it was proposed to build. I think that section needs a severe pruning, with separate subarticles if the information is significant enough. Doesn't work for me as it stands now though. --Malleus Fatuorum 21:32, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
It may just be that I'm too familiar with the topic – this was the line that ran to Noel Park, so I did quite a lot of reading on the various schemes – but I can't see an obvious way to change it. The whole story is basically a story of choice between assorted rival schemes and how they differed, and consequently the different schemes all have to be explained in at least enough detail to clarify just how they differed. We'll see what the FAC Cabal™ has to say; there's probably an obvious solution that someone with a clear wood/trees perspective will point out. – iridescent 21:54, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
(Joining-in). I appreciate that there is a long discourse on things that were never built in the article but, tube-nerd that I am, I find that one of the most interesting aspects of the whole story of the line - just how ambitious the management were in planning new routes, even before the line was open. The bits that were built are well known as they're in everyday use and it's the "secret history", "what-might-have-been" aspect of it that I think needs to be brought out in these early tube history articles. The early history of the Bakerloo line will be simpler, as it was built much as originally planned, although there was a financial scandal and a suicide involved before it opened. Beyond that, there's a whole other network planned by J. P. Morgan that Edgar Speyer managed to sabotage the planning of which deserves an article. --DavidCane (talk) 22:35, 11 May 2009 (UTC)

← I wish you luck with this article's FAC nomination, and I certainly won't be opposing, but I think you need to have mercy on those who aren't necessarily yet tube-nerds. Anyway, depending on how the FAC goes we can pick this discussion up again later, or not. --Malleus Fatuorum 23:53, 11 May 2009 (UTC)


I think you've missed a few of my posts concerning my support for WR ! Replied at the above. :) Pedro :  Chat  22:36, 11 May 2009 (UTC)

Main page...

Can I ask you and your talk page stalkers to do me a major favor? Ælfheah of Canterbury, one of mine, just went up on the main page for today, and I'm utterly and totally exhausted from the foaling last night (see my talk page for a link to baby foal pictures!). If folks could keep an eye on it for obvious vandalism, it'd be great. Ealdgyth - Talk 00:53, 30 April 2009 (UTC)

Watchlisted. J.delanoygabsadds 00:54, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
Thank you. Maybe the saint will bless you or something... (grins) Surely we get bonus points for watchlisting saint articles? Ealdgyth - Talk 00:58, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
Just out of interest, is that the record-holder for shortest TFA (at least, in the modern era when things like this no longer get FA status)? – iridescent 16:07, 30 April 2009 (UTC)
"I can't talk right now, I'm feeling a little horse." Well, someone had to say it. – iridescent 18:32, 2 May 2009 (UTC)
File does not work. Simply south (talk) 19:51, 7 May 2009 (UTC)
It did work - E. seems to have taken the whole foal gallery down. (talk) 12:27, 8 May 2009 (UTC)
Fixed link  – iridescent 21:07, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

Regarding your recent revert

Hello, Iridescent. I was wondering why you made this revert for the reason you gave. If that is the case, then what purpose does the link at Wikipedia:Sock puppetry serve? Based on the reason you gave, that link at Wikipedia:Sock puppetry should also be removed. -- IRP 13:48, 9 May 2009 (UTC)

I can't see a link to Sysop anywhere at Wikipedia:Sock puppetry, unless someone's already removed it. I removed the link from WP:Administrators because it's inappropriate and misleading; our use of the term "sysop" is an archaism from Bomis days, and the role of a Wikipedia admin (protect; delete; block; hide bulk edits from RecentChanges; change the user interface; grant rollback and ACC permissions) has nothing in common with the dictionary definition of a sysop ("oversee the operation of the servers") – technically, we should be using the word "sysop" to refer to Developers, but we've been misusing the term for so long it would be more confusing to change it. – iridescent 13:58, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
Actually, we would use "system administrator" for developers. When I was referring to the link at Wikipedia:Sock puppetry, I was referring to the link to Sockpuppet (Internet), which based on the reason you gave for the removal of my link, I would assume that the link to Sockpuppet (Internet) at Wikipedia:Sock puppetry should be removed. -- IRP 14:21, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
(Bangs head against wall)
  • Sysop = "a person who oversees the operation of a server, typically in a large computer system"
    WP:Sysop = "Editor who has been given access to restricted technical features which help with maintenance".
    Sysop WP:Sysop
Seriously, read articles before you link to them. – iridescent 16:56, 9 May 2009 (UTC)
'Sysop' was the arbitrary name chosen for the master account of any media wiki site. As these privileges are given to others, they are also named sysops. Unfortunately, this has no resemblance to those who run IRC or, my personal favorite, bulletin boards. Was that a good lesson? Law type! snype? 00:46, 10 May 2009 (UTC)
This is why they should be called "administrators". Gurch (talk) 14:28, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I have another name for them. Would you like to hear it? ;-) --Malleus Fatuorum 14:33, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Is is family friendly? (I bet I know the answer...) Ealdgyth - Talk 14:36, 12 May 2009 (UTC) P.S. My gods, we have an article on that.... Ealdgyth - Talk 14:37, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Mal, let me warn you in advance about our policies on personal attacks and civility. XD لennavecia 14:44, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I've heard of those policies somewhere before ... BTW. do they apply to everyone, or just to me? --Malleus Fatuorum 16:22, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Last time I checked I think administrators are exempt. Gurch (talk) 16:28, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Well you can also call them "assholes", but only if you agree to move the project pages to "Requests for assholeship" and "Assholes' noticeboard". Gurch (talk) 16:15, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Do you think anyone would notice? --Malleus Fatuorum 16:24, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I am not an asshole!!! I am a bitch... damnit... get it right, people!! >_> لennavecia 16:30, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Re Gurch – yes, we really should get rid of "sysop" as a word. Nobody uses it correctly and it just confuses people. If we're getting rid of job titles, though, first in line should be the ridiculous "bureaucrat" and "oversighter", neither of which bear the slightest resemblance to what they actually do. (Somewhere in the archives is a truly insane discussion in which it was seriously proposed to give each position on Wikipedia a Roman military title). – iridescent 19:08, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Found it. The talk page takes "insane discussion" to a whole new level. – iridescent 19:15, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I love it! Too bad I was so busy last June, I missed it... Ealdgyth - Talk 19:22, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Renaming admins to Thingmen would work. Although WP:Requests for Reeveship has a ring to it. – iridescent 19:27, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
What about one of my favourites, gong farmer? --Malleus Fatuorum 15:03, 13 May 2009 (UTC)
I prefer Groom of the Stool. Nominations for Wikipedia's holder of the post spring to mind. – iridescent 15:06, 13 May 2009 (UTC)
Bureaucrats are unnecessary anyway. No reason administrators can't add/remove bot user group. No reason administrators can't rename users. No reason stewards can't add/remove administrator user group. Oversighters would also be unnecessary if the developers actually got the revision hiding stuff working properly. Gurch (talk) 20:48, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
But if we got rid of the bonus levels, what would be the point of the game? – iridescent 21:05, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Administrator *is* a bonus level. Gurch (talk) 21:09, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
No, administrator just means you're a priest in Jimbo's church. There's no need at all for all the bishops, archbishops, cardinals, saints et al right up to Pope Jimmy himself, other than tradition, and the traditionalists doing their best to hold onto the powers of setting dogma and excommunication. Sooner or later the reformation will come. – iridescent 21:22, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I feel more like an alter boy than a priest. Law type! snype? 21:28, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
Oh, we have those too. – iridescent 21:30, 12 May 2009 (UTC)
I was just implying that I felt touched when I became an admin. Law type! snype? 02:14, 13 May 2009 (UTC)
You must have been touched, to put yourself through RfA. ;-) --Malleus Fatuorum 15:06, 13 May 2009 (UTC)
Let's be honest, we're all de facto 'touched' if we are hanging out on Iri's talk page. :P Law type! snype? 01:30, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
(←) This conversation suddenly got hot. لennavecia 01:52, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
JV, your edit summary forced me to get Just saying. Keeper | 76 03:51, 15 May 2009 (UTC)

Personal Attack

Yeah, I understand that rule and I usually don't do that. I took an exception, but I won't do something like that again. I plan to remove my comment. --The Legendary Sky Attacker 23:33, 16 May 2009 (UTC)

I accept that my recent activity was inappropiate and I will take a short break from vandalism patrolling to cool off from my actions. --The Legendary Sky Attacker 23:51, 16 May 2009 (UTC)


The edit I issued the final warning for was this removal from User:Sky Attacker's talk page. I use manual warnings, so I don't get to add links to them. - NeutralHomerTalk • 23:51, 16 May 2009 (UTC)


Hi Iridescent, I hope all is going well for you. I noticed a couple of your posts recently, and thought I might like to expand on a couple of my own recent posts. This is basically regarding some of the RfA !votes I've made which included the phrase "by default". While I don't know if there is an actual policy which says support for an RfA should be the default (though I'd think not), I have seen it mentioned in several threads in the past - but that's not really where I'm heading with this. I noticed you actually opposed a candidate recently to "cancel out some of the inane 'support as default'". (very poor reason to oppose a candidate I would think - but given the numbers at the time, I can understand the rationale). I believe that at the time you posted that, there were only 2 "supports" with mention of default - so I figure it's a 50/50 shot that it may be aimed at me. Either way, I'd like to expand on my "default" comment. I approach each RfA with the hopes of supporting an editor, if nothing else, as an extension of AGF. At times, I do admit that I don't vet the candidate with a couple hours of research into edit history that I should, but I do look at the basics: oppose reasons, tenure, edits, block logs, etc. If I don't see anything that would persuade me that the editor would mis-use the tools, I default to support. BUT, there is even more to it than that. Having a background in real life as a network administrator, as well as multiple tours in chat rooms, forums, bulletin boards, etc. as a mod or admin., I tend to trust a person when they request another level of access. (at least until they prove to me that it was a mistake to trust them). Having to administrate a mid-sized LAN with over 250 users, 150 workstations, and 6 servers (as well as a few smaller networks) - I did find that the more work others were willing to do (responsibly of course), the less time I was required to spend doing often tedious and mundane chores; thus, I could spend more time doing other more productive tasks. That is why I will support an RfA candidate by default. I know "wiki-world" is not real life, but I find comparisons useful at times.

Iridescent, I know you're a high-profile, prolific, and respected editor here - so I'm open to any counter-points you'd care to share. I noticed you mentioned the "status-quo" at one point, and I'd be interested in you thoughts on that. I do realize that once an editor has obtained the "bit", it can be difficult to remove it from a disruptive or even rouge admin. Perhaps there's something in that which I'm not thinking all the way through as well. As long as I don't get "the cat treatment" (your user page) - I'm always up to getting some insight from another editor, especially when they've got a great deal more wiki-experience than I do. Sometimes I can be inquisitive to a fault I guess ... lol  ;) — Ched :  ?  05:17, 17 May 2009 (UTC)

Also, on a side note, if you'll have a glance at this you'll notice that I don't blindly support with blanket !votes. Just in case it was a concern. — Ched :  ?  06:52, 17 May 2009 (UTC)

You must be reading a different RFA to me. At the time of writing (permalink) there are six supports based explicitly on the "default position" claim (11, 12, 28, 102, 109, 117) – there are also numerous "supports" with no reason given or completely spurious reasons, as well as what may be the single most idiotic vote in RFA's sorry history (and I go back long enough to remember "candidate needs a more fear inspiring username"). And as I've said there, while I don't blame the candidate for the stream of abuse being directed at opposers by the more vocal members of her IRC fan-club, I most certainly do consider her failure to acknowledge that it's problematic as prima facie evidence of poor judgement. – iridescent 15:28, 17 May 2009 (UTC)
Ahhhh ... OK, I see what you're saying now. I was just going by the exact word "default" and only found 2 !votes with that. To some extent I agree with you, no one should just "support" without looking at some of the edits and such. Good point. (and some great links too ... laughed my but off on a couple of em.). The indirect reference to Kurt is a nice touch too ;). But I don't know Iridescent, sometimes I think you're a bit overly-harsh, and at time even a bit cynical. I don't mean that as an insult, I honestly don't - but this is a volunteer project, we should be here because we want to be. I'm not particularly debating any individual RfA: The bottom line is this: In an RfA, will the candidate make Wikipedia a better website if he/she has the tools. That's all I'm saying here, I prefer to be optimistic, and I wanted you to know that I don't just "!vote" blindly without at least looking at the basics. As far as IRC goes, hey, it's a communication tool. Some folks use it, and some folks don't. Although I know a couple folks there, my history should make it obvious that my supports, neutrals, and opposes are based on "Wikipedia" contributions.
As far as the lack of judgment in this particular case? .. meh ... Not a big deal to me. You have a very valid point, it's always better to do the full disclosure thing, and own up to the big picture. If I saw any diffs that indicated a gross negligence, a total lack of clue, or any type of influenced manipulation, then I would surely strike my support, and go oppose. To deny an editor's request for a few more abilities simply because they chat on IRC though? Naaaa ... I'm not gonna be that demanding. Just so you know that my choices are thought out, and not blindly posted w/o forethought. — Ched :  ?  18:27, 17 May 2009 (UTC)
"In an RfA, will the candidate make Wikipedia a better website if he/she has the tools" contradicts everything you've just said. This is identical to "only support a change if the proposed change is a net positive, otherwise default to oppose". Make your mind up.
If you want to call me "overly harsh" (or its close cousin, "chronic opposer") then fine; show some evidence. In fact, show me one of these occasions of me being "overly harsh"; this is a wiki and the diffs will all be there. If you can't find any, then maybe you've learned a valuable lesson not to believe everything you read on IRC. – iridescent 18:51, 17 May 2009 (UTC)
Awww Iridescent, come on girl, cut me some slack here. I'm trying to meet you in the middle on this. Yes, I'm familiar with Majorly, Neuro, FT, Ironholds, Chzz, and a score of others from IRC. I didn't mean for the "overly-harsh" comment to come across as "poke" or anything, I was just offering my own perceptions that you have a strict criteria for editors. That's not meant to be a dig or anything - honest! As far as the "lessons I've learned"... well they go back to the BBS days before USENET existed. Yes, I agree, there are some real idiots out here on the Internet, No, I don't believe everything I read on IRC or the Internet in general. And the bottom line is that I'll continue to look for the good qualities in our Wikipedia editors, and I'll continue to assume that they will be a positive addition to our site. Is that really such a bad perspective to have? — Ched :  ?  19:27, 17 May 2009 (UTC)
I don't know who you are, but you are starting to seriously annoy me. You're more than welcome to go through my entire history at RFA and see if you can point out a single example of my "strict criteria" at work. You may notice that while I do indeed have 94 RFA opposes, on all but five of them* the RFA has been unsuccessful, and all but one of those successful have been borderline cases passed by 'crat discretion, which makes me think that maybe the community agrees with me and that it's a case of your criteria being too lax, not mine being too strict. –  iridescent  20:02, 17 May 2009 (UTC)
*Penwhale (67s, 20o), lustiger seth (151s, 46o), Aervanath (94s, 35o), Anthony Appleyard 2 (49s, 7o) and Elonka 3 (176s, 61o, and look how well that turned out), should you care.
OK - fair enough. It honestly wasn't my intent to annoy you .. honest. I apologize and won't bother you any further. — Ched :  ?  20:11, 17 May 2009 (UTC)


Not promising. Looks like it wants a block. Enigmamsg 08:00, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Looks like it might be a hacked/compromised account or a role account; seems a bit of a sudden lurch from writing articles on automobile designs in 2007, to writing vanispam on Australian schools in 2008, to vandalising in 2009. See who gets caught in the autoblock. (I wonder what I've done to warrant his attention?) – iridescent 12:35, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Question finally answered?

Gender question resolved, no? لennavecia 16:20, 19 May 2009 (UTC)

Yes, but remember I have no life. Or friends. Because I am gay.
I have a certain sympathy for this one. This is certainly the most baffling. My all time favorite is this (and its follow up here – I suspect it's actually an impersonator rather than SY himself, as I've never seen him be that crude).
I did appreciate the DC sock's panicking and self-reverting himself 30 seconds later on your talk a couple of weeks ago, too. –  iridescent  18:57, 19 May 2009 (UTC)
O rly? I missed it. Pft. I always miss the fun. As an aside, that version of your sig there is ghastly. Just horrid. Haha. لennavecia 20:42, 19 May 2009 (UTC)
For your viewing pleasure – 1, 2. My sig is randomized – statistically you shouldn't see it again for at least 11 posts. I can dig out one of the really irritating sigs if you'd prefer? – Even more annoying iridescent sig.gif 20:46, 19 May 2009 (UTC)
Hello, I noticed that your signature contains an image file. According to Policy Images in signatures give undue prominence to a given user's contribution. Your undue prominence is a very serious concern. Law type! snype? 02:10, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Quite right. Burn the witch! --Malleus Fatuorum 02:17, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
You are though Law misrepresenting what is a guideline as a policy; I hope you'll try to be more careful in the future not to confuse the two again. --Malleus Fatuorum 02:21, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Ah, I see now that you're an administrator. That explains your ignorance. --Malleus Fatuorum 02:25, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Three edits to respond to my posting? So much for being succinct. Policy, guideline, essay - I habitually give them all the same weight. Law type! snype? 02:33, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
I was trying to do you a favour, as my first posting would probably have had you running off to your mother for comfort. ;-)
It may come as a surprise to you, but I and I'm certain many others have no interest in what you habitually do, and I'd suggest that in future you keep your evident misunderstandings to yourself, as they'll only end up embarassing you. --Malleus Fatuorum 02:40, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Hey, Mal, here's your sarcasm detector back. I borrowed it and forgot to return it. Just remembered you were without it now. لennavecia 05:11, 20 May 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, I was probably a bit snappy, sorry Law. Iridescent's signatures can be a bit irritating sometimes, especially that damn flashing one. --Malleus Fatuorum 12:12, 22 May 2009 (UTC)
Oi! You do know that the flashing one has never been used in a "real" post, but only in a conversation with Gurch about annoying sigs – and now this – right? – iridescent 12:20, 22 May 2009 (UTC)
Yes, sorry! --Malleus Fatuorum 12:26, 22 May 2009 (UTC)
Personally I don't see what's wrong with it. Gurch.gif 03:25, 23 May 2009 (UTC)
Oh yeah, Images signitures are just the latest and greatest thing, Let all have huge obnoxious signitures, It will be COOL! Thought I expect soon enough there will be an arbcom ruling against it :'( Promethean.gif - (talk) 08:29, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

For all you TPSs out there...

On a small private company owned Wiki, we're wanting to set up some sort of keyword imbedded in the page that allows more robust searching. Does anyone know how to work that with the wikimedia software? Ealdgyth - Talk 00:11, 22 May 2009 (UTC)

mw:Extension:MetaTags? Or one of the similar extensions listed at mw:Extension Matrix? --MZMcBride (talk) 00:20, 22 May 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. I forwarded that to our "wiki person" (we're pretty small) who shall be grateful if it works. Any other suggestions are most welcome (and thanks Iri for letting me steal your page, I figured your page and Sandy's were going to generate the most stalkers...) Ealdgyth - Talk 00:39, 22 May 2009 (UTC)
If it's possible, you could probably pester Gurch into writing it; he's very good at coaxing the MediaWiki software into doing things it was never intended to do. If you don't object to Fraternization With The Enemies of Wikipedia, you might want to contact Greg Kohs as well (wiki page here, or email address as given here) – whatever your opinion of his activity on Wikipedia, he's got four years experience in using MediaWiki as a commercial marketing tool and might well have some helpful suggestions. – iridescent 11:28, 22 May 2009 (UTC)
Actually, I don't know the first thing about how MediaWiki works (I don't even know PHP), about all I know is the API. Gurch (talk) 03:24, 23 May 2009 (UTC)


Hi Iridescent, thanks for restoring my userspace pages. Regards, Guido den Broeder (talk, visit) 00:55, 22 May 2009 (UTC)

No problem. – iridescent 11:28, 22 May 2009 (UTC)


Hey Iridescent. Do you have any idea why this message was posted to me? Actually, I'm a bit surprised, as I can't remember having edited something with regards to this topic ever. Best wishes, — Aitias // discussion 16:12, 22 May 2009 (UTC)

No idea at all. I assumed you'd warned him for something he'd added to Michael Jackson - I keep half an eye on that page as it's such a potential BLP nightmare if Realist2 ever stops keeping it clean, but don't follow the history. If he just picked you at random, that's very odd. (talk) 06:46, 23 May 2009 (UTC)


Another FA for a Thames bridge. If there are 33 in London, how many until you get a Featured Topic for those articles (33% FA minimum, the rest GA)? Ottava Rima (talk) 17:34, 23 May 2009 (UTC)

Is that a trick question? :) Majorly talk 17:36, 23 May 2009 (UTC)
Well, it can only be a trick question if there already is a featured topic on it (I didn't see one), or if this was the first article of those promoted (too lazy to hunt down all 33 to find out), or if there is no Thames river. Since I've never actually -been- there, that is a possibility. :) Ottava Rima (talk) 18:11, 23 May 2009 (UTC)
I've been there many times. Trust me, there really is a River Thames. --Malleus Fatuorum 18:21, 23 May 2009 (UTC)
Hmm, that makes me doubt the existence of said river even more - you are from Manchester and thus might be spreading rumors that gullible tourists hear, go there, and then realize that there is no river, which ruins their time in London and makes them never want to return. It's clearly a plot. Ottava Rima (talk) 18:30, 23 May 2009 (UTC)
20 road bridges and 13 rail- or foot-bridges so either 7 or 11 would be 1/3. Richmond Bridge is an FA and Vauxhall Bridge should pass with no trouble while Wandsworth Bridge is too boring to get higher than GA; that makes either 17 or 30 still to do (under the new rules everything has to be at least GA). iridescent 21:48, 23 May 2009 (UTC)
(adding) They're going deceptively quickly at the moment as I'm cherry-picking the easy (translation: boring) ones first. The nightmare will come with London Bridge (seven different bridges, over a period of 2,000 years; the subject of countless books, poems, songs; the focal point of dozens of historical events all of which need to be mentioned) and Tower Bridge which has the opposite problem; it's such an iconic image that people will expect an interesting article but it's actually a little-used and absolutely undistinguished Victorian bascule bridge. – iridescent 16:09, 24 May 2009 (UTC)
Is Lodden Bridge on your list? I've got a redlink in William Longchamp waiting on the article... Ealdgyth - Talk 20:05, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
It'll still be a redlink, but that's a typo – it should be Loddon Bridge (see [6]). It seems to have remarkably little (e.g., no) online presence and doesn't look significant enough to be mentioned in books – if you make yourself annoying enough at WP:BERKS someone might dig something up, or there's enough in that spam link given to at least knock off a sub-stub. – iridescent 20:12, 25 May 2009 (UTC)


My RfA

Thank you for participating in my "RecFA", which passed with a final tally of 153/39/22. There were issues raised regarding my adminship that I intend to cogitate upon, but I am grateful for the very many supportive comments I received and for the efforts of certain editors (Ceoil, Noroton and Lar especially) in responding to some issues. I wish to note how humbled I was when I read Buster7's support comment, although a fair majority gave me great pleasure. I would also note those whose opposes or neutral were based in process concerns and who otherwise commented kindly in regard to my record.
I recognise that the process itself was unusual, and the format was generally considered questionable - and I accept that I was mistaken in my perception of how it would be received - but I am particularly grateful for those whose opposes and neutrals were based in perceptions of how I was not performing to the standards expected of an administrator. As much as the support I received, those comments are hopefully going to allow me to be a better contributor to the project. Thank you. Very much. LessHeard vanU (talk) 12:42, 24 May 2009 (UTC)


Well, back to the office it is...

Well done in hopefully opening a door and showing it's possible. So many of Wikipedia's structural problems would be solved if people stopped treating desysopping as a great taboo. Governments of every size and at every level – from the President of the United States to the boards of directors of companies to obscure parish councils – manage to accept regular reconfirmation of active members, and removal of inactive members, as healthy facts of life; I really don't see why we treat both as some kind of unspeakable evil. – iridescent 14:41, 24 May 2009 (UTC)

DYK for Vauxhall Bridge

Updated DYK query On May 25, 2009, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article Vauxhall Bridge, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.
Dravecky (talk) 14:21, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

DYK for Glass Age Development Committee

Updated DYK query On May 25, 2009, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article Glass Age Development Committee, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.
Dravecky (talk) 14:22, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

Two up there simultaneously, on a public holiday, and not a single piece of vandalism to either. I feel somehow slighted. – iridescent 19:46, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
You can watch Paulinus of York on the 29th and Manchester Small-Scale Experimental Machine on the 30th for Malleus and I, if you're feeling cheated of whack-a-vandal. Ealdgyth - Talk 19:51, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Didn't we just have a saint? I thought Raul had a no-articles-on-the-same-topic-within-three-months rule. – iridescent 19:59, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, we did. Don't ask me, I don't EVER request articles to appear. It was Ælfheah of Canterbury on 30 April. And the way the mare is looking, it looks like the second mare will foal the night before like the last saint... Ealdgyth - Talk 20:03, 25 May 2009 (UTC)


Hi, sorry for the late reply: I've been reconsidering the Category:Animals who attempted suicide with regard to Bubbles, and I essentially concur w/ what you wrote. I've posted on my talk page as requested, but just wanted to let you know because I've been slow as heck. PasswordUsername (talk) 03:48, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

No problem at all – sorry for the inconvenience it must have caused, but it really didn't seem an appropriate category  – iridescent 11:50, 26 May 2009 (UTC)

RE: Moni's talkpage message

I wasn't referring to artists THEMSELVES, I was referring to articles about the artists. Sorry, my New York english may have caused some confusion. ^^' CarpetCrawlermessage me 20:46, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

Small problem...

Legal threat here. I'm not noted for my ability to handle these sorts of things without biting... Ealdgyth - Talk 01:19, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

Looks like Juliancolton's already handled it. (Aren't you supposed to be off giving birth to a pony today?) – iridescent 15:23, 28 May 2009 (UTC)
Well, the mare has to get with the program. Right now, she seems to see this whole preggo thing as just a great excuse to score extra food... Ealdgyth - Talk 15:31, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

"Without content, Wikipedia is just Facebook for ugly people."

anyone feel free to remedy that by posting hawt pix. just sayin'. Gurch (talk) 04:22, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

You might be out of luck there. As far as I can tell is fairly representative. – iridescent 15:21, 28 May 2009 (UTC)

DYK for Battersea Bridge

Updated DYK query On May 30, 2009, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article Battersea Bridge, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.
Dravecky (talk) 14:21, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Mad Glass Bridges!

I did spot your comment on the Vauxhall Bridge FAC. I wasn't objecting to anything, just thought there might be some extra info that might not be in your sources. As you say they were ahead of their time and would have been very happy to see the glass curtain walling being used in office buildings and even apartment blocks being built these days. I assume the closure means that it was a promotion as it is certainly covers the subject well. Congrats.

You must have been reading my mind on the FAC for GNP&BR as I was just wondering where to put some posts in to attract attention to the article. Both the Trains and UK Railway Projects seem to be dry wells in this respect but I'm heading over to WT:FAC right now. Fingers are crossed. I've got a GAC in the architectural section for Charles Holden's Senate House and am also almost ready to put Charles Pearson up for GAC. --DavidCane (talk) 23:00, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

If you haven't already, this section of Giano's essay – possibly the single most useful document on Wikipedia – is well worth reading. It's cynical, but as long as you don't cross over the line between "raising awareness" and "canvassing for supports", I see nothing wrong with mentioning it in places where you think people who will give it honest reviews (not places where you think people will automatically support – a couple of WikiProjects have received raps on the knuckles for that). I don't see anything wrong with asking a straight "how can I get more reviewers for WP:Featured article candidates/Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway/archive1" on talkpages you know are read by large numbers of FAC reviewers; posting here might well prompt a fair few people who wouldn't ordinarily take an interest in a railway article to take a look; Moni3 and Malleus Fatuorum are two who spring to mind. (Malleus in particular would be quite a good one to ask, as he's frequented by a lot of Manchester/Cheshire editors who are near enough to understand the UK terminology, but far enough from London as to not have any strong opinions. Don't be put off by Malleus's occasional reputation – he tells things as he sees them, but his points are always at least valid, even if not always right IMO.) You might also want to ask Slambo if you haven't already; he's the granddaddy of all "train" editors and anything he has to say on the matter is usually worth hearing. – iridescent 23:14, 30 May 2009 (UTC)

Mass deletions again

Sorry to ask you again but your the first admin i think of. Could you delete all of April from Wikipedia:Motto of the day/April 1, 2009 to Wikipedia:Motto of the day/April 30, 2009 per G6? Simply south (talk) 20:47, 25 May 2009 (UTC)

 Done – iridescent 20:54, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
I will probably ask you again next week to do May if that is okay, but not now as it is still here (and i won't be able to subst them until then). And thanks. Simply south (talk) 20:56, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
No problem. (Although would it not be easier to just leave them in situ to form an archive?) – iridescent 20:57, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
They're already archived in the schedule. Simply south (talk) 21:01, 25 May 2009 (UTC)
Or in the nomination archives. Btw, could you do May now? Simply south (talk) 10:35, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
Gone: Special:PrefixIndex/Wikipedia:Motto of the day/May. Amalthea 11:06, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Re: Battersea Bridge

The images are okay; I only had to perform some minor maintenance.

However, I am slightly concerned for File:Johnspencer.jpg. Worldroots does not allow archiving and its site is down. There is no way to verify that the portrait is what it claims to be. I found Amanda Foreman's site. She is supposedly the "best" biographer for Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire, so she probably knows her identitification of the Spencers; others, however, might not agree (credentials of Foreman? primary source?). I was unable to find books that provide visual authentication of the portrait. There are a few that states Gainsborough did indeed paint a portrait of the 1st Earl Spencer, but no "here is the picture". Maybe you would have better luck. Jappalang (talk) 03:31, 27 May 2009 (UTC)

I can't find anything on Google Images other than Foreman's site, and don't know how reliable that is. The same image (albeit flipped horizontally) is used to illustrate John Spencer on the official Spencer family history – which I would consider reliable in this context – but none of the paintings there are attributed. Do you think that's reliable enough as a source? Given that the two articles using it are using it to illustrate Spencer, rather than as an example of Gainsborough's work, hopefully the attribution issue shouldn't be a problem. – iridescent 15:42, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
I think it is pretty solid affirmation if we consider this two sites and the books I have mentioned (the ones that allows me to have full views do not show the portrait)[7]; the portrait was hung in the family's mansion (so they certainly know what it looks like, even if they are a primary source), and a successful biographer acknowledges its authenticity. Jappalang (talk) 18:17, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Excellent, thank you! (If anyone else reading this wants to find out if it is, in fact, possible to die of boredom, Battersea Bridge is the article in question.) – iridescent 18:22, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
I think it's a very interesting article, actually. –Juliancolton | Talk 18:34, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Try Wandsworth Bridge, then, which should test your boredom threshold to the limit… – iridescent 18:36, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Still more exciting than some of my articles. –Juliancolton | Talk 18:49, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
I can do those too. – iridescent 19:23, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
WRT A215 road, it could do with some improvements imo. E.g. the lead is way too short, there's numerous unreferenced parts, some parts are quite listy. It was made a GA in 2007, so maybe standards have risen since. Majorly talk 19:32, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Probably, but it's someone else's problem. It was only expanded to prove a point about the potential for expansion of {{road-stub}}s, following a particularly foul tempered AFD; I've never been there, probably never will, and have no interest in it. – iridescent 19:36, 27 May 2009 (UTC)
Please try not to send pictures without a source, author, or date to FAC. Such images do not go well with policy (verifiability and such). I found File:Joseph bazalgette.jpg to be in public domain, but the search had some troubles (very few publications on Google Books printed his image). Note that for photos, US public domain would require the photo to be published (not created) before 1923 (or without a copyright notice after) while UK public domain would require the photographer to be dead for more than 70 years. The alternative image's photographer also died more than 70 years ago though.[8] Jappalang (talk) 02:05, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
Replied on your talk. I know that Bazalgette photo was potentially problematic (which is why I raised it on your talk); it came from de-wiki, and not speaking a word of German I can't ask the uploader where they got it. Hopefully, this kind of thing should stop being a problem, as the most obscure bridges are now out of the way and we're now moving onto the ones that have a lot of coverage, where copyright & sourcing issues should be far more clear-cut. – iridescent 14:33, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

June Metro

I've decided to fill in the empty job vacancy for the Metro for this month, feel free to correct any mistakes or add any missing information. Cheers! Crest of London (T|C|A) 22:38, 31 May 2009 (UTC)

Assuming Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway and Battersea Bridge pass, DavidCane and I will between us have written over 70% of all GA/FA material on the project. Just saying, like. – iridescent 22:53, 31 May 2009 (UTC)
I have updated it. Crest of London (T|C|A) 12:08, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

I know you like bridges, so...

Would you be able to help out this fellow if you get a chance? I'm sure he'd appreciate it. Thanks, Majorly talk 01:30, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Will have a look when I get the chance. Will be doing 12 hour shifts for the next couple of days so may not be for a few days. As with any UK transport related articles, a visit to Ian Allan is always a good starting point (the Manchester branch is at 5 Piccadilly Station Approach); that goes just as much for your Cheadle Hulme Station one, too. – iridescent 12:45, 1 June 2009 (UTC)
Yes I was recommended to go there by someone I know IRL - it's a bit out of my way though, so I stuck with the library. If I think of taking CHRS any further, I'll probably pop in there at some point. Majorly talk 15:00, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Jackson projects

This might interest you, since I know you like the older music more. :) — R2 15:40, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

Looks like this is going ahead, one mammoth job. — R2 00:11, 6 June 2009 (UTC)


Long time no speak - how are ya doing?

Anyway, i'm wanting to get active here again and would like to jump straight in at the deep-end. I really want to get a GA or FA before too long, as well as get content building, and involved with WikiProjects again! I also want to help out with more mundane jobs too ;).

So, my main point: can you point me in the direction of anything, do you need any help etc? I want to (re-?)establish myself as a good editor here, and you've been great in the past so was hoping you could help again :).


BG7even 23:09, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Depends what you're interested in. The obvious thought would be to get your Blackpool Tramway up to scratch – it's almost there, it just needs a little work. Read Giano's essay, which is probably the single best guide to writing Wikipedia articles there is; go to WP:FAC and look at the current articles, or look at articles in whatever area you're looking to write in that have already made FA/GA and see how they did it (they're usually listed on the WikiProject talk page, and are automatically added to categories such as Category:FA-Class London Transport articles depending on what projects they fall under). If you do go ahead with Blackpool, then I'd recommend pestering contacting the Manchester project – I know Blackpool's not technically Manchester, but it's near enough, and for some unknown reason WP:GM contains some of Wikipedia's best writers at the moment. If you're planning to stick to transport, then following the format in this non-quite-essay of mine, in my experience works very well as a quick-and-easy checklist to get transport articles up to at least GA standard. – iridescent 23:24, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks a lot :). Something transport-y would be nice, I think Blackpool Tramway would be good :). Incidentally, i've spent the last few months at simple:, where I got simple:Crich Tramway Village to the equivilent of a FA - perhaps GA here? Thanks again, is it ok if I keep pestering? Regards, BG7even 23:28, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't have many dealings with WP:GA, so I'm not entirely sure what they're looking for. If Malleus or Pyrotec is watching this page they can probably explain which aspects of the article would/wouldn't work at en-wiki GA as opposed to Simple; as you're probably aware Simple has a (quite often well deserved) bad reputation, so don't be surprised if anything brought across from it comes under closer scrutiny than a "fresh" article would. – iridescent 23:32, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
The content of simple:Crich Tramway Village looks reasonable, but the stubby prose would be a problem, as would the embedded list. I understand why it's written that way for Simple, but I think it would need to be "upgraded" if it ever went for GA here. --Malleus Fatuorum 23:43, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
multi-e/c Not experienced one of these in a while! Ok, thanks :). It does originate from National Tramway Museum here, so it's not completely fresh ;). Without wanting to get into wikipolitics, I agree that some of Simple's bad reputation is very well deserved, but I must say we are getting better (I personally blocked one user that's indef here and should have been indef blocked there ages ago...). I want a break now from the drama that surrounds the wiki everywhere! At least at EN you can choos to stay out of it ;). Regards, BG7even 23:46, 5 June 2009 (UTC)
Malleus, shouldn't be too hard to expand it up, "complicate" it etc. Thanks for the heads up/TPS'ing ;). BG7even 23:46, 5 June 2009 (UTC)

Peer review (other TPS are welcome to help too)

Hi there, I have nominated Scream/Childhood for peer review. I would like to send it to FAC over the summer. Any assistance is appreciated. — R2 00:10, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

I'll have a look, but I'm awful with song articles and don't know what The Regulars look for when it comes to them. – iridescent 00:12, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
Prose and MoS is my weakness, any help with that is appreciated. Other ideas are also appreciated. It's been a long time since my last FAC, don't know why I put myself through it, but I'm up to the challenge :) — R2 00:15, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
Malleus and Moni will probably beat me with sticks for saying this, but don't worry too much about the MOS. Articles don't (or shouldn't) get failed for MOS violations; precisely because they're so trivial, they're easily fixed, so anyone who really takes exception to your use of em-dashes/forced image widths/collapse boxes/mixing {{cite book}} and {{citation}} templates/formatting of fractions etc etc etc will generally just either fix them or point out what needs fixing. The important things for FA are: No obvious gaps; anything that anyone could possibly be challenged is sourced to a reliable source; minimise repetition; read it top to bottom with as much of a fresh eye as you can possibly muster to look for boring bits and try to rewrite them. One bit of advice I'll give is, with five fair-use images in the article, it will come under very close scrutiny by the Fair Use Police; I'd strongly advise asking User:Jappalang now to have a look at all the rationales and make sure they're up to scratch. If they're not usable at all, you're better off finding out now so you can write around the fact; if the rationales need fixing, again you want to find out now rather than have Jappalang and Fasach Nua slap lengthy "oppose" votes on it at FAC. (Even if you later fix the issues and they withdraw the opposes, people are less likely to bother reading and reviewing something if the first two comments are lengthy opposes.) – iridescent 00:30, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, the large number of fair use material did cross my mind. I'll have to really work on those. The ones related to "Childhood" will be the first to go, if any have to. I've called in nearly 10 people to look at the article, hopefully they will help. — R2 00:35, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
I'd recommend asking Jappalang. Whatever he says about what is/isn't acceptable you can take as gospel, as it's his opinion that Sandy and Karanacs will listen to. (Fasach Nua opposes everything containing a fair use image, so don't take opposition from him to heart if you get one.) – iridescent 00:38, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Jappalang just gave me some advise with the fair use material, I should be OK if I follow his pointers, but the bottom image of the "Childhood" music video will have to go. Would you mind deleting it as a fair use image not used in any article, if I go and remove it now? — R2 13:03, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Remove it from the article, and once it's been orphaned for five days it will be deleted as {{db-f5}}. Because you weren't the one who uploaded it, I'm reluctant to instantly delete it – the original uploader could conceivably find a use for it. Once it's orphaned, the bots should take care of it so you can forget about it. – iridescent 15:22, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
Yeah that's true. Cheers. — R2 15:25, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Kudos on Bruce Castle

good posting it here\ and I'm sorry I never looked at it like I was supposed to. StarM 02:25, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Citation/core problem

Are you sure that reverting the recent change didn't fix the bug? Note that, because of caching, you often have to change the page that calls the template, or otherwise purge the cache somehow (I'm no expert here); merely changing a template won't immediately change every page that uses the template. I'm asking because reverting the recent change did fix the bug in the sandbox, and it'd be very strange if it didn't fix the bug in the actual template. Eubulides (talk) 17:45, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Ah yes, forgot to purge – that's fixed it. – iridescent 17:47, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

DYK nomination of Ordish–Lefeuvre Principle

Symbol question.svg Hello! Your submission of Ordish–Lefeuvre Principle at the Did You Know nominations page has been reviewed, and there still are some issues that may need to be clarified. Please review the comment(s) underneath your nomination's entry and respond there as soon as possible. Thank you for contributing to Did You Know! Ironholds (talk) 22:18, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Replied there. The third one was in Singapore, and life's too short to try to puzzle out if it still exists. (Malleus, before you say anything I know this one is boring, but it's possibly the only time anyone will ever read this article. This one, on the other hand, should pass even your standards of "genuinely interesting".) – iridescent 22:25, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
That Ordish article is well 'orrible. I like the Chelsea Bridge hook though. --Malleus Fatuorum 23:40, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
The Ordish one is only there because the redlinks on Wandsworth Bridge and Albert Bridge were irritating me – plus, it meant I didn't need to go into quite as much detail on Albert Bridge about just why it was such a significant design. Given that there will only ever be a maximum of six articles to mention it – the three bridges, Ordish and Le Feuvre's bios, and a brief mention on Wandsworth Bridge – and I've no intention of touching the bios and the other two need Czech and Chinese speakers, respectively – I will never see it again; the only reason I sent it to DYK is to try to get this photo on the main page, as I like it. I suspect OLP may well end up with the coveted "least read article on Wikipedia" title. – iridescent 00:08, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
Oops! Me and my big mouth. :-( It's a worthy subject, but it's obvious that you dashed it off in a hurry. --Malleus Fatuorum 00:17, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
For some reason I never had you down as someone worried about offending people… (Even "dashed off in a hurry" is doing it too much justice; try "cut-and-pasted".) – iridescent 00:21, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
You had me down right. I was just trying to avert an attack from the civility police. --Malleus Fatuorum 00:31, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

BP Pedestrian Bridge FAC

You seem to be a Bridge person. I just nominated an interesting Bridge at FAC.--TonyTheTiger (t/c/bio/WP:CHICAGO/WP:LOTM) 23:43, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

Will have a look - might not be until tomorrow though. – iridescent 23:57, 6 June 2009 (UTC)


Nuvola apps edu languages.svg
Hello, Iridescent. You have new messages at Dank's talk page.
You can remove this notice at any time by removing the {{Talkback}} or {{Tb}} template.
- Dank (push to talk) 14:31, 7 June 2009 (UTC)
I've already said my piece on the main thread; I think this proposal is a solution to a completely nonexistent problem. I don't see the need to spread the discussion across multiple pages. – iridescent 15:24, 7 June 2009 (UTC)

Question (Dollis Viaduct)

Are you an architect\geologist? Do you know who or where i can find one or anyone who has knowledge on the subject? I just need someone to sort the links on the Dollis Viaduct. I asked you seeing as you seem to be doing all about bridges. Simply south (talk) 21:46, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

User:DavidCane is a surveyor in real life – and certainly knows his tube trains – so is probably the best one to ask, as he'll know the correct terminology. Normally with architectural questions I push them towards User:Giano II, but he's currently blocked. – iridescent 21:48, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Looks like GiacomoReturned but why was he blocked? And i have asked DavidCane. Thanks Simply south (talk) 22:01, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Whole sorry saga here. – iridescent 22:07, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Whilst we are on the subject of bridges, i am just saying i am going to start an article on a bridge which you had an attachment to last year... (on the portal anyway) Simply south (talk) 22:33, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Which one? Only one I remember last year is Putney Railway Bridge. Incidentally, you might be interested in this revealing of my trade secrets – while it's all just my personal opinion, no article I've written to this formula has ever failed at GAC/FAC. – iridescent 22:45, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
I was meaning the selection located here somewhere. Simply south (talk) 22:50, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Oh, Suicide Bridge? If so you might want to steal this section of A1 road (London) as a starting point. – iridescent 22:54, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
I thought it was called Highgate Archway from research i've done and the book i have got. Simply south (talk) 23:05, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
"Suicide Bridge" is a nickname. I don't think the current one is officially called Highgate Archway – that was the John Nash designed bridge that it replaced; AFAIK the current bridge's official name is just "Hornsey Lane Bridge". (At one point Haringey Council suggested renaming it "Bridge of Hope", but it didn't fly). There's a film about it floating round somewhere – can't remember what it's called but it's linked on that A1 article. – iridescent 23:12, 4 June 2009 (UTC)


Actually going back to Dollis Viaduct, could i ask for and independent review? Knowing myself, i tend to start off good and then move onto something else. Simply south (talk) 23:09, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

Will have a look. If you haven't already, By Tube Beyond Edgware by Tony Beard has quite a good history of that line and its rather odd history. – iridescent 23:12, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Do you know where i can find info on the length of the bridge? Simply south (talk) 22:47, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
For Dollis Viaduct, DavidCane may well still have the sources from when he was writing his Edgware, Highgate and London Railway article – the EHLR built the bridge. That article says "13 arches each with a span of 30 feet", but doesn't say what the source for that was. If you mean Suicide Bridge, then it's 120 feet long and 80 feet high. Hansard is always a surprisingly good source for things like this. – iridescent 23:00, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
This is for the Dollis Viaduct. I have tried searching and cannot find the length but i have a source for the arch spans. ICE book. Simply south (talk) 23:17, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
Don't know, to be honest. The London Railway Record probably covers it, but it isn't online; otherwise, Jim Blake's Northern Waste is probably the most comprehensive guide to the whole Northern Heights scheme. Or, Barnet Council will presumably have the exact details floating around somewhere in their records. Even Pevsner doesn't give the exact length, so it's probably not easily available. (If you're not planning on taking it to GA/FA, where the Uncited Source Police will attack you for it, the Google Earth measuring tool shows it as 187m.) – iridescent 23:57, 6 June 2009 (UTC)
The ICE book does say "The brick viaduct...has 13 segmental arches, each of about 32ft span...". I don't have any of the other sources except for the two books and numerous web sources. Should i take this to peer review and see what they say? Simply south (talk) 20:58, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Can do, or it might be worth asking someone more involved in the style side of things (I'd suggest Pyrotec, or if you don't having every fault in the article laid bare, Malleus). Don't get too hung up on the length aspect; We don't include what we can't find sources for is, after all, a core Wikipedia principle – and the fact that no other source mentions it implies that most people don't find it that important. There are ways to word things to obscure the fact that you haven't been able to source things. (Dollis Brook Viaduct is a viaduct of 13 32-foot (9.8 m) brick arches in North London. Built by the Edgware, Highgate and London Railway in 1867. It formerly carried the Great Northern Railway line from Finsbury Park to Edgware, and now carries the Northern line of the London Underground…") – iridescent 21:10, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I had to remove the part about doubling of the Finsbury Park line because i couldn't find it in either of the books. Simply south (talk) 21:27, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Actually, do you know if an informatiuon board on site count as a reliable source? Simply south (talk) 21:29, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Yes I do, as I asked the same question myself some time ago when I was researching the Great Stone. The answer's no, but if you're lucky the onsite board will tell you where it got the information from. --Malleus Fatuorum 21:41, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I've just asked Pyrotec but do you want to review it as well? Simply south (talk) 21:45, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Pyrotec's a good choice. I have a tendency to be a little ... brutal. :-) --Malleus Fatuorum 21:51, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
What do you mean brutal? Simply south (talk) 22:08, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I mean that Iridescent is quite right: "if you don't [mind] having every fault in the article laid bare". Just look at the number of GAs I've delisted, for instance, it surprises even me. :-) --Malleus Fatuorum 22:13, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
Does that mean brutal is bad? Simply south (talk) 22:22, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
"You may well think that, I couldn't possibly comment." --Malleus Fatuorum 22:26, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I guess it would be something like "your article is too short... there is not enough info on the architecture and length... the wagon is too tall, i don't want to have to drive up upon the curve... what is the relevance of the geology and the walk..." ? Simply south (talk) 11:06, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
More like that in this, taken from the History section "This was in preparation for a transfer of the lines to the London Underground for it to form part of the system's Northern line", the pronoun "it" does not match its subject, "lines". --Malleus Fatuorum 11:18, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
I see, so very nitpicky. Simply south (talk) 11:22, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Some may take that view, but I prefer to think of it as "uncompromising". Good means good, it doesn't mean fairly good in parts. --Malleus Fatuorum 11:34, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Fixed that small part. Are there too many "thought to"s in the naming section? Simply south (talk) 17:20, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

← I do, far too many, and this doesn't help: "The name is thought to have mean ...". Iridescent will probably disagree with me again, but I think it's important to at least try to give your prose a bit of va-va-voom when writing this kind of article. As an example, I've rewritten the first two sentences of the Length, span and architecture section. Wouldn't you agree that's a significant improvement? --Malleus Fatuorum 21:38, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

I entirely agree. Trim the technical prose as much as possible without losing meaning and put in lots of details, is always a good rule. This is exactly why Chelsea Bridge has all that "Red House" background which has no real relevance to the subject; why Noel Park wanders off on assorted tangents about toilets and trains; why the much-maligned Hellingly Hospital Railway waffles about brakemen with red flags at the level crossings and Canadian soldiers during WW2; why Eilley Bowers rambles off on all kinds of oddities. Background colour breaks solid slabs of technical material into something people who aren't particularly interested in the subject can relate to, and illustrate just how these dull technical things affect ordinary peoples' real lives, and just why people ought to care. The difference between a GA and an FA, in my decidedly not-policy view, isn't anything about MOS compliance; it's that an FA is interesting. It's probably why I tend to like TonyTheTiger's articles – he may drive Sandy to tears with disregard for the MOS, but he has a knack for explaining why people felt passionate about fairly boring things. – iridescent 21:50, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
I think "The difference between a GA and an FA ... [is] that an FA is interesting" is pretty close to the mark. To add another to your examples of "waffling"—I'd much prefer to call it adding background colour—I always like to include any relevant hauntings when writing about old topics. Some may consider details like that to be trivia, but not me. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:10, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Of all the article writing i've done, i've never really focused properly on something, for very long that is, and so this is my first true attempt beyond Start-class. Talking about removing the technical jargon, i would appreciate help in, if it is possible to reword to make it understandable, "Each arch spans 32 feet (9.8 m) at the springer level, and is based on tapered piers. In each pier there is an opening with an arched soffit and a dished invert."? Or should it stay? Simply south (talk) 22:26, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
Well I for one have absolutely no idea what "at the springer level" means, so that needs to be explained, at least. --Malleus Fatuorum 23:08, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Split – this thread has forked too much

(ec, re to SS, and I note I disagree with Malleus – go with M not me on things like this) Not at FA level, but I'd imagine it would be sufficient for other purposes. Fansites are a definite no, and promotional material if it's for anything controversial (it's fine for opening dates and such, though). Middleton Press may well have published something that gives the exact dates. – iridescent 21:45, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

None of the sources i have used are fan sites (Abandoned Stations is an external link and i think if i used Subbrit, it may count as a reliable source as it seems to be a highly recommended organisation. Hmmm, maybe i should start an article on them). They are 2 books, 3 local news sites, the ICE website, 1 charity and 1 journal. Simply south (talk) 21:54, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
If this were at FAC I'd rip Subbrit to shreds as a source, but anywhere else I think it's acceptable for odd factoids (although be sceptical of anything appearing there that doesn't appear elsewhere). They make a very good external link, though, as Nick Catford has such an impressive stash of photos. Certainly Tunnel Railway managed to get past the baleful stare of Ealdgyth at FAC despite containing a Subbrit EL. IIRC Pyrotec is actually involved with them in some way. – iridescent 21:57, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I guess its like CULG? Simply south (talk) 22:08, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't think CULG (note to the baffled) is reliable personally, in Wikipedia terms. Anything they say is generally duplicated in Demuth's The Spread of London's Underground anyway, which – given that Demuth actually drew the tube map – is about as pure a reliable source as it's possible to get. – iridescent 22:15, 8 June 2009 (UTC)
I would agree on that (and its difficult to understand and navigate anyway). I can't because i don't have the sources they do, re to Subbrit (if anyonyone else is reading this, Subbrit means Subterranea Britannica). Simply south (talk) 22:22, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

(outdent) I have a baleful stare? (Boy, wish it worked better on the teenager...) And I agree, Subbrit isn't going to cut it, I think I recall that with Tunnel Railway it was moved to the ELs precisely because it couldn't be shown reliable (I may be wrong, too lazy to check) Ealdgyth - Talk 22:23, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

When it comes to ELs, your stare would shame a cockatrice. (No, Tunnel Railway's sourcing was sound from the start – the issues on that one were all regarding whether File:Ramsgate Tunnel Railway entrance at Beach Station.jpg could be defended as fair use). – iridescent 23:02, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

DYK for Ordish–Lefeuvre Principle

Updated DYK query On June 9, 2009, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article Ordish–Lefeuvre Principle, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.
Mifter (talk) 23:28, 9 June 2009 (UTC)
A bridge, a horse and a church in Brighton. All it needs is a hurricane and DYK would have a perfect score today. I do like that picture though. – iridescent 23:35, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

A favour

Can I ask a favour? Would you please remove my rollback flag? I'm disgusted at the way some administrators use its removal or threat of removal as a childish punishment, and I can't remember the last time I used it anyway. --Malleus Fatuorum 01:13, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

Yes check.svg DoneJuliancolton | Talk 01:32, 10 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. --Malleus Fatuorum 01:37, 10 June 2009 (UTC)

request for your eye

Hi there. User:Kbthompson suggested you would be a good perosn to ask. Would you like to have a look at Newington Green Unitarian Church? It is the first substantial article I've written. Many thanks. BrainyBabe (talk) 16:09, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

Will do, but with the proviso that I don't know much about church architecture of this period so may not spot errors. You might also want to ask User:Malleus Fatuorum (who may well see this here and take a look anyway), who's generally very good at spotting minor problems in this type of article. – iridescent 16:17, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the speed of your response. It exemplifies my difficulties! I take it you wrote it before looking at the article, and you assumed (as most people will) that it is primarily about architecture. Not so: no more than a hospital or a school is. A church is a group of people with a common(-ish) purpose and a shared history, just as much as it is a building. So hat is part of my trouble, in finding a way to bring it under the noses of parties who would be interested, if only they read the lede and TOC. BrainyBabe (talk) 16:26, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
I was about to comment that one of the article's weaknesses is that there's hardly anything about the building's architecture. There is a listed building there though that does need to be more fully described, I think. --Malleus Fatuorum 17:17, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, can you put that on the article talkpage? BrainyBabe (talk) 17:25, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Would there be any point? You seem to have set your face against the idea. --Malleus Fatuorum 19:32, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Agree with Malleus here. For pretty much any article that covers both an organisation and a building, the building is likely to be of interest to as many or more people than the institution within the building (with a few exceptions such as U.S. Capitol or Auschwitz). Remember, everyone in the area sees the building and potentially has an interest in it; not everyone has an interest in the institution within the building. See comparable "notable institution in a notable building" articles from Beth Hamedrash Hagadol to St Pancras railway station to Hagia Sophia to Poh Ern Shih Temple – while the article doesn't need to focus on the architecture, it needs to cover the architecture to a reasonable degree.
The other thing that glares out at me is that the article has no "impact on the community" section. Every institution has some kind of impact on the community – even if it's just "not many people paid much attention to it and it was not as successful as expected" – and there's nothing at the moment to cover the local public reaction to the church, nor the impacts on and relationships with other churches in the area and other Unitarian churches nationwide (what do other Unitarians think of the church's stance on gay rights, for example?)
I certainly don't mind going through this one, but (as Malleus alludes to but doesn't quite say above), if it gets cleaned up & expanded to GA/FA standard, you and others involved with it need to be prepared for it to undergo some fairly ruthless rewriting and subediting. If you haven't already, I cannot recommend enough that you read Giano's essay, which is the single best guide to how Wikipedia's article improvement processes work in the real world instead of the fantasy-land inhabited by the writers of Wikipedia's policies. – iridescent 22:06, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks both for these comments! I'm sorry if I've given the impression that I have fixed views about how to describe the architecture. The opposite is the case -- I would be delighted to have more about it. One of my difficulties with that section is that I find it hard to reword the quotes. There is the technical vocabulary of ecclesiastical architecture which I just don't see how to paraphrase. Giani's essay was very amusing and informative, though I don't think I was aiming at an FA -- as I said, this is my first really substantial article from scratch. "Impact on the community" is a good idea; would you see that as including the times when few came to Sunday services but many flocked to the pre-Alcoholics Anonymous meetings? Could you point me towards any articles that have an impact section you recommend as a model? Good points too re other churches, though goodness knows how to get sources for that. BrainyBabe (talk) 23:07, 3 June 2009 (UTC)
Although he's currently blocked (should be back fairly soon) I would strongly recommend asking Giano (now GiacomoReturned) to have a look at the architecture. Even his many detractors would generally agree that he's our best writer on British architecture – and (cynically) the very fact of asking on his talk will likely cause a lot of our architectural experts to have a look at it and make suggestions.
Two other people I'd suggest asking would be User:Moni3 – as an American with no apparent interest in religion (or architecture) that I'm aware of, she'd possibly be quite good at spotting things people already familiar with the area would miss, and although I doubt she'd normally take an interest in it, she's written a lot of gay-rights and other LGBT related articles so this one might interest her more than usual – and User:Ottava Rima, who as a conservative Catholic might be quite good at providing a more critical commentary on the religious aspects – reading through this article, I can see a number of things (including a name-drop for his beloved Samuel Johnson) that may well interest him.
Regarding the "impact" section – basically, what you're looking for is "how does this affect people"? It could be anything from outreach programmes, to variations in usage over time, to notable members (while you mention numerous notable people currently associated with it in the past, are there any notable people currently members of the congregation, and if so have they spoken about the church publicly?)
An article that might make quite a good "template" is Congregation Beth Elohim (Brooklyn, New York), which appears to be on a fairly similar theme (a not-quite-splinter congregation which has developed its own distinctive identity) so might make quite a good model.
It could probably do with at least one interior photo if you have one, as well; although there's a photo of the building in the infobox, the article itself seems to be illustrated with everything mentioned except the church itself! – iridescent 23:29, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

<unindent> Thank you for all these suggestions. I have just spent an hour reading through the articles mentioned, of other buildings/insitutions. I will contact some of the editors suggested, too. And I'll put a link to this discussion on the article talk page, to help me keep track of it. As for "how does this affect people", I think there are a fair number of citations for how the church did affect people, up until WWII, when my sources of info peter out. Its usage has varied a lot over time, e.g. with social outreach in late Victorian & early C20. Current notable members is one lead to follow: I wonder how I'd find out what is public and fair game, and what is private. BrainyBabe (talk) 08:08, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

Regarding current members, the absolute rule is "nothing unsourced". If a newspaper, biography etc has mentioned someone's membership, then it's in the public domain and fair game; if it's unsourced information, it falls under WP:BLP and can't go in. – iridescent 12:47, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

Quit spreading lies that I give good copy edits. Lies! --Moni3 (talk) 14:42, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

What are you complaining about? I've seen a lot of people say that you give good ... oh wait, I think I may have misread. --Malleus Fatuorum 14:54, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't quite know which direction you were going with that, but that possibly is more lies. Or the absolute truth. --Moni3 (talk) 14:56, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Replied there

Replied on the talkpage so others can see my comments and add to them/argue with them as necessary. Sorry for the delay in getting back to you on this one. – iridescent 17:40, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

currency conversion

Talk:Vauxhall_Bridge#Misleadingly_precise_currency_conversions Tony (talk) 16:03, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

Replied there. Basically, I think you and Malleus are right; Philcha is making a good-faith mistake (the data set I'm using for inflation is the data set he suggests I use); Ohconfucius is either seriously misreading the article or is outright lying in claiming that it's "unsourced". – iridescent 14:31, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

DYK for Chelsea Bridge

Updated DYK query On June 12, 2009, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article Chelsea Bridge, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.
Royalbroil 11:28, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

Congratulations on that rarest of things, an actually interesting DYK hook. --Malleus Fatuorum 14:22, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

I'm going to go against type and actually defend some of those boring DYK hooks, or at least the people who contribute them. Chelsea Bridge was a very atypical "new" article in that the expansion went straight from 4kb to 30+kb, and hence the new article already had the "background colour" in place. Most new articles start as boring stubs and grow gradually, meaning that the only time they qualify is at just that time when they're most boring. The flaw here is with the process, not the contributors. – iridescent 14:28, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
I'm going to go against type too, and agree with you. I've felt for some time now that the DYK process needs a good shakeout. --Malleus Fatuorum 14:32, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Quite right. I thought mine was good, though. :D لennavecia 15:07, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
Well, you have the 7100 hits for the brilliant refreshing prose of Ordish–Lefeuvre Principle as a target to aim for. – iridescent 15:11, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
It was, but you're paying the price for that front page exposure now. ;-) --Malleus Fatuorum 15:12, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
There are worse fates that can happen to articles at DYK – iridescent 15:17, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

DYK for Albert Bridge, London

Updated DYK query On June 13, 2009, Did you know? was updated with a fact from the article Albert Bridge, London, which you created or substantially expanded. If you know of another interesting fact from a recently created article, then please suggest it on the Did you know? talk page.
Dravecky (talk) 11:28, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

SECR N class

Hello there, Iridescent. Just wondering whether you are interested in contributing to the FA review for the above article, as you did a good job of finding prose issues with the Leader class. Any assistance you can give in improving this article further will be of invaluable help to me and the other editors of this article. Regards, --Bulleid Pacific (talk) 11:36, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

I will do although (as with the last one) with the proviso that I don't actually know that much about locomotive design – I tend to focus on the bridge-tunnel-station infrastructure side. – iridescent 21:14, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

Thank you for your review of the article, and you put across the argument regarding the difficulties of writing an engineering topic better that I could. The livery section is not ideal, but it never will be unless someone takes the time to take photos of various aspects of this. Maunsell grey is pretty much just that, a grey livery. The only reason a designer attaches his name to it is to differentiate from previous liveries- its a way of creating an extra chronology for the paintwork!. Once again, thank you. --Bulleid Pacific (talk) 09:29, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

Oh, I know; I'm just trying to look at it from an "outside" view. Someone outside Britain reading it is unlikely to know how Maunsell grey differs from other greys. I wonder whether it might be worth adding blocks of the relevant colours to the SR article? – iridescent 13:46, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

How would you go about making an annotated colour chart on wikipedia? I think its a good idea, but the creation of such a table is beyond my capabilities at the present. --Bulleid Pacific (talk) 15:46, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

To be honest, I've no idea – although {{Infobox TfL line}} shows it's possible. I'd suggest posting at WT:FAC – since it's relating to an article currently at FAC it's not an unreasonable place to ask, and a lot of the "old sweats" will see it there and hopefully one will know. – iridescent 15:52, 13 June 2009 (UTC)
I've had a bash at putting something up on the Southern Railway page. Some of the colours are so subtle you cannot see the difference on a computer screen. I suppose its only a representation, and there's the LBSCR livery to think about. What do you think? It'll do as a quick fix until someone clever sees it, and puts it all in a nice table! --Bulleid Pacific (talk) 16:50, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

Albert Bridge

I am so sorry. I was chcking the archive for something else and misread the first wikilink as the bold wikilink, and figured someone hadn't deleted when prepping the queue. Won't do that again! Have restored it to talk page and it will find its way to DYK. apologies once again. hamiltonstone (talk) 15:02, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

No worries… – iridescent 15:05, 12 June 2009 (UTC)
I've suggested a way around the {{IoE}} problem on the GA review page. Mjroots (talk) 14:46, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

You have been nominated for membership of the Established Editors Association

The Established editors association will be a kind of union of who have made substantial and enduring contributions to the encyclopedia for a period of time (say, two years or more). The proposed articles of association are here - suggestions welcome.

If you wish to be elected, please notify me here. If you know of someone else who may be eligible, please nominate them here

Discussion is here.Peter Damian (talk) 14:45, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

Replied there – iridescent 15:07, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for nominating me for this Irid, your continued faith in my abilities is much appreciated. However, I have decided to decline at this stage. — R2 20:26, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

I suspect it will fail (although the noticeboard seems to be getting up and running); there are too many big egos involved to form a clear consensus on anything. My guess is that it will turn into an on-wiki version of Wikipedia Review. Which, if only the Civility Police can be fended off, is no bad thing. – iridescent 20:29, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
If it actually works and ends up having a strong, worthwhile purpose I'll reconsider. All the best. — R2 20:33, 15 June 2009 (UTC)

Article writers' noticeboard

Since it was your idea originally, I thought I'd let you know that I'm currently working on a draft here. Feel free to help out. –Juliancolton | Talk 17:22, 13 June 2009 (UTC)

WP:AWN is good, but where do the DYK, a.k.a. young articles and their writers, go to get discussed? WP:YAWN? Sorry. I'll go back to my newly forming "non-writing-shouldn't-have-passed-rfa-and-wouldn't-pass-in-todays-wikipedia-factionalized-climate-useless-unsympathetic-janitor-corner, or WP:NWSHPRAWPITWFCUUJC for short. Keeper | 76 01:58, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Serious answer; as I envisaged it when I suggested it, I saw the AWN as a step above RFF and a step below the full peer-review. A board where (unlike the more general boards) a high level of familiarity with both Wikipedia policies, and the Mediawiki software, would be taken for granted. Thus, RFF and the assorted Village Pumps would continue to be the places for "I've never written an article before, can someone have a look at it?" style queries, while the new AWN would be the place for questions like BulleidPacific's "Would it be useful to include an annotated colour chart illustrating the assorted paintwork specifications in articles on rail companies?", or the "how many significant figures should be included in auto-updating inflation templates to avoid being misleadingly precise?" argument debate currently ongoing. At the moment, the lack of a "high level" noticeboard means both conversations are in inappropriate places where most of those with the knowledge to help won't see them. Thus, RFF would continue to cater for the WP:YAWN market and VPP for WP:NWSHPRAWPITWFCUUJC, but this will hopefully stop the unhealthy combination of WT:FAC, Sandy's talkpage, and Wikipedia Review being used as general sounding boards. – iridescent 19:04, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
Leave it to Iridescent to make sense of this. I was mostly just jabbing and pouting because I (rightfully) wasn't invited. :-) Honestly, I do think it holds value. Keeper | 76 02:17, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
If you look at the original thread that set this off, I wasn't invited either… – iridescent 10:53, 15 June 2009 (UTC)
Good thread. (as if I expect anything less on MF's talk). I've always liked his persisting idea of debundling the tools. I don't remember where you stand on that, but there is definitely a strong rationale to it to de-mystify the whole admin aura. Like doing AFD/NPP? Here ya go. Vandal patroller? Go to town. Content watchlister? Have at it. Want them all? Good friggin luck. Keeper | 76 02:32, 16 June 2009 (UTC)


Hey, could you please comment here and watchlist the article for a few weeks. Cheers. — R2 16:19, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

Already did! – iridescent 16:21, 14 June 2009 (UTC)
You must have read my mind :) — R2 16:25, 14 June 2009 (UTC)

Harry Potter

Hey I didnt do anything to Harry Potter go away please —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:52, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

Someone from your IP did. – iridescent 14:33, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

That message was posted back in October 2008.--The Legendary Sky Attacker 23:07, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

Amazingly enough, I am actually aware of that… – iridescent 23:08, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

I know. I was talking to the IP.--The Legendary Sky Attacker 23:09, 12 June 2009 (UTC)

Talking to network identification numbers is a sign of madness. Or were you talking to the contributor? Gurch (talk) 15:01, 16 June 2009 (UTC)


You are still a racist piece of scum. And you're probably not a woman but a dirty old man who gets his kicks pretending to be a girl so you can hassle everyone younger then you. Well stop it. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:03, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Dude, I had no idea you were a chick, because, well...I don't really pay attention sometimes. Please confirm these allegations at once! --Moni3 (talk) 14:31, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Ah, I see you got one too Iridescent.[9] Do you believe it came from the same place I do? --Malleus Fatuorum 14:58, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Malleus, you are racist against everyone younger than you? *Internal error: cannot compute* I think people are getting progressively more stupid. It's all going to go full circle. Bumbling idiots carrying clubs and grunting at each other. It's only a matter of time. At least it's you guys getting called a racist this time. It summer, I need this vacation. Thanks for covering for me. لennavecia 15:03, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Ah yes, I remember you were a being accused of being a supporter of white pride or somesuch nonsense last year because of some pretty innocuous remark you made. Apart from this poison-pen writer's evident confusion over what racism actually means he could hardly be further from the truth in calling me a racist as it happens. What I am though is stupidist, I really, really, can't abide fools. Especially fools like this one who're so stupid they can't even recognise that they're fools. --Malleus Fatuorum 15:11, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
[Breaking in line] Yes, and now "Hipocrite" is giving me shit on WR. It's good times, really. I should post a pic of my "Klan meeting" tonight, hahaha. I'll be sure to tell all my friends about this at the bar. Most of them heard the story last year and found it highly amusing, but I gotta figure out a good pose for a pic that accurately depicts the humor. My group of friends is fairly diverse, so I'm going to have to get creative with this. لennavecia 17:14, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Make sure to include at least one white person in the pic, preferably a couple of southeastern Asians, an native American would be good as well, an inuit if you can find one that far south, and ... --Malleus Fatuorum 17:19, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Do all these teenage boys have crushes on you because they've heard you're a wizard under a sheet? (I'll get me coat…) – iridescent 17:22, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Well, let's see. If everyone shows up, there will be two Mexicans, two Filipinos, one half-Filipino/half-Indian, one African-American (it's her going away party), a Polish guy, an Irish guy, and me. So yea... one of the Filipino girls always gets mistaken as Asian, which really pisses her off. She must be racist. <_< Dude... I actually do have a Native American friend... everyone thinks he's Hispanic, though, cause his boyfriend is Mexican. I wonder if they'd want to come. I'll find out. Hahaha. REPRESENT! لennavecia 18:36, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Surely Filipinos are Asian? "This article is about the country in Southeast Asia". – iridescent 18:40, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
"His boyfriend"? Now, I may not be a racist, but there do have to be limits on tolerance ...</joke> --Malleus Fatuorum 18:49, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Don't call them Asian. That's my experience, at least. They don't appreciate it, particularly the one I mentioned above. Malleus, naughty man. I would turn my Native American friend out if I could. He is too sexy. Tall, black hair, ripped like Jesus. Mmm. Alas, I'm not his type. He did say he wished I was a guy, though... so he could date me. Shame, really. لennavecia 19:46, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Maybe it's all the talk of bridges has brought the trolls out?
I strongly suspect it's someone from WR/ED trolling, not anyone you know. The Kiddy Kabal are (AFAIK) all based in the US and this has come from – er – Bolton (yeah, it could be an elaborate IP spoofing, but why would you?); the only person I can think of in the area who'd say things like this would be Majorly, but while I disagree with him on most things, I'll give him the credit that he would (and does) criticise people openly when he disagrees with them, and doesn't hide behind an IP. And I'm sure he knows the difference between racism and ageism.
IP, if you're still watching would you mind explaining how "pretending to be a girl" would "help me hassle people younger than me"? – iridescent 16:18, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
The IP is certainly not me. Last time I checked I could speak English comprehensively, and I'm not really in the area either - Bolton is north of Manchester, I'm south of it. Majorly talk 16:26, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Not another ED troll. I just had to deactivate my Wikipedia email address after receiving racist messages all week. — R2 16:29, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
(Majorly) Didn't think so (aside from anything else, with a Manchester article at FAC I can't imagine you intentionally annoying Malleus). As per above, I can't really see you making lame anonymous troll posts, anyway. And certainly not at 2PM on a work day.
(Realist) Just ignore ED; they always get bored and go away after a while. Never reply to any of them, though. (If the emails were sent from Wikipedia, the Checkusers can trace who sent what when and shut down email from their IPs, if it really gets to be a nuisance.) – iridescent 16:34, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks. They always seem to pop up in the summer, must be bored kids on their holidays. — R2 16:37, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
15:36 logmsgbot: andrew synchronized php-1.5/CommonSettings.php 'Blocking an email address which has been spamming ascii art to admins' Gurch (talk) 17:22, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

No-one ever sent me any ascii art :(

 – iridescent 17:33, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

I can safely say this talk page had a happy ending. Law type! snype? 20:03, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
A happy ending or a happy finish? (Go on, turn this link blue. You know you want to.) – iridescent 20:10, 16 June 2009 (UTC)
I'm pretty sure it's happy ending or else the diction at my local pub is simply awful. Law type! snype? 20:15, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Isn't racism bigotry against marathon runners? I get so confused in these politically correct times. --WebHamster 20:01, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Okay, I'm impressed

Nice work on Albert Bridge. Congrats. Risker (talk) 04:30, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Thank you! The technical details meant this was always going to be the most problematic of this series and was one of the ones I'd discounted when working out which to take all the way to FA (the topic needs either 7 of 20 road bridges or 11 of 33 bridges of any kind to be FA level to meet the FT rules). Assuming Chelsea Bridge passes (can't see why it shouldn't) that only needs two more, and hopefully avoids the nailing-jello-to-the-wall scenario of trying to shepherd London Bridge and Tower Bridge through FAC. – iridescent 18:47, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
Btw, Did you know... that your "Did you know..." made it into the top 20 for June of hooks with the highest number of views, at 12,300 views? Simply south (talk) 21:51, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Ha! Lara, the public obviously prefer dog-piss to pigeons. (By my count Chelsea Bridge ought to be on that list too, but we'll let that pass. And I'm sorely deleted to delete Egg and chips and Peanut butter, banana and bacon sandwich right now; if those warrant their own articles, so does my cat. And my cat died in 2003.) – iridescent 22:00, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
"Imagine a world in which every single person on the planet is given free access to the sum of all human knowledge. That's what we're doing." -- J. Wales Law type! snype? 22:22, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
You have to remember, food articles are a sore topic on this page. – iridescent 22:24, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
You got hosed. I just had my way with a pancake. It was plain, not chocolate chip. I'm no psycho. Law type! snype? 22:38, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
That article did have probably the single best illustration on the entire project (it's only a plate of cookies, how could it be unsafe for work?), too. If anyone can find a pretext to use it in an article, please do – it seems a real shame to have it orphaned. – iridescent 22:43, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

You can't go deleting egg and chips - where else would we find out interesting factoids like it being John Lennon's favourite food, which his Aunt Mimi prepared for him with a cup of tea? Majorly talk 22:42, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

Or "In North West England, "Beer, fags, egg and chips" is an example of individual behaviour thought to be connected to poor health". All you Mancs take note. Incidentally, the one reliable source on John Lennon's favourite food I can find says it was – er – Chicken Maryland. Maybe he just waited for the eggs to hatch. – iridescent 22:44, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Oh, there's also Dear Yoko Ono, what was John Lennon’s favourite food? YO: Sweets and Chocolate. But what would the Lennon family's own website know about him? – iridescent 22:50, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Times Online says it was egg and chips. But then again, if he was anything like me, he might have had several favourites. He might have liked sweets and chocolate for dessert, but egg and chips at other times. Who knows? More importantly, who cares? :) Majorly talk 22:55, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
My guess would be he liked egg and chips when he was 9 and lived with Aunt Mimi, and then grew up. And how can you say "who cares"? This is The Sum Of All Human Knowledge™ here! Next, you'll be saying that nobody cares that the male and female Moluccan King Parrot are similar in appearance! – iridescent 22:58, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
I don't care, not sure about you. My railway station article at FAC is incredibly dull too as it happens though. Not that railway stations are normally interesting. Majorly talk 23:02, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
"Beer, fags, egg and chips" - wow. I mean wow. I had every one of those things yesterday. Extra! Extra! Oreos are also used as an adornment on top of Donut King's 'Cookies and Cream' sensations donut. I think I'm going to get faded and batch delete 99% of what is on this site. Law type! snype? 23:14, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

Arbitrary break: on boredom, blowjobs and biscuits

As I keep saying to anyone who'll listen, engineering/transport/architecture articles by definition have to include a lot of boring technical material and facts-&-figures, but it's possible to hide the fact that the material is dull. To cut-and-paste a reply I gave at Talk:Newington Green Unitarian Church last week on a similar situation, compare these two wordings:

  1. The building of the bridge was authorised in 1851. However, construction was delayed until 1856 as the site of the northern approach road was occupied by the Chelsea Waterworks Company, which in 1852 had been ordered by Parliament to relocate but did not do so until 1856.
  2. The Chelsea Waterworks Company occupied a site on the north bank of the Thames opposite the Red House Inn. Founded in 1723, the company pumped water from the Thames to reservoirs around Westminster through a network of hollow elm trunks. As London spread westwards, the former farmland to the west became increasingly populated (between the 1801 and 1881 censuses, the population of Battersea rose from 3,000 to 107,000) and the Thames became seriously polluted with sewage and animal carcasses. In 1852 Parliament banned water from being taken from the Thames downstream of Teddington, forcing the Chelsea Waterworks Company to move upstream to Seething Wells. Although work on the building of the bridge had begun in 1851 delays in the closure of the Chelsea Waterworks, which only completed its relocation to Seething Wells in 1856, caused lengthy delays to the project, and the Edinburgh-made ironwork was only transported to the site in 1856.

They both say exactly the same thing – "the bridge was authorised, but building was delayed because the waterworks took a long time to move" – but the latter puts the issue into a broader context as to just why these things were happening when and where they did, and makes it (marginally) more likely that readers are going to care. While I disagree with Giano on a lot, one thing I think he's absolutely right on (even though he doesn't stick to it outside of mainspace) is, always write everything as if you're addressing a reasonably bright 14-year-old with no previous knowledge of the subject. Thus, throw in fluff about sex and violence, and any curious factoid trivia, if you can possibly find any; we're not writing technical manuals here, and you want readers to think "hey, that's not as boring as it sounds". Google news archive is almost always a goldmine for this kind of "background noise" material – in particular, look for the words "strike", "crash", "murder", "love", "film" and "disaster". – iridescent 23:22, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

Ya know, Iri, for your bj cookie image, I thought erotic art, perhaps. However, upon looking at the images in that gallery, I don't think it would go. Reminds me of the Sesame Street's "One of these things is doing its own thing; one of these things just doesn't belong" song. That said, why are all the chicks in the erotic art images tubby? Where are the hot skinny bitches? لennavecia 23:13, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
It's Argentinian – maybe they have different standards there? (I'd recommend Buenos Aires as an amazing place to people-watch if you ever get the chance – I've never seen so many beautiful women and ugly men in one place, and I've been to LA.) – iridescent 23:22, 22 June 2009 (UTC)
Editor (pictured right) interacting with one of several administrators (left), two weeks prior to transcluding his RfA

"So that's where that smell's coming from!"

Courtroom illustration of Supreme Court case Squid v. Clam.

The rejected poster design for Octopussy
Adding – What. The. Hell???????? – iridescent 23:25, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

I'm not sure what sex, various food items, parrots, a railway station and a church have to do with a great bridge that was structurally unsound... Simply south (talk) 17:07, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Welcome to my talkpage – it gets like this. Everything in this thread does actually progress logically, if you read it from the top. – iridescent 17:28, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Richmond Bridge

Congratulations for getting Richmond Bridge on the main page. Good luck on keeping the vandalism at bay. :) --DavidCane (talk) 05:16, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Aye, from me too. Strange how, never having seen it before, I instantly knew the article would be one of yours ;) EyeSerenetalk 07:22, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks! Not the one I'd have chosen from this series – Battersea Bridge has both a more interesting history, and much prettier pictures – but if the worst the vandals can come up with is changing "carries the A305 road" to "carries the A316 road" (oh how we laughed) I guess I can't complain. – iridescent 18:49, 17 June 2009 (UTC)


Despite my best efforts to explain what a tontine is, it seems 13 of the readers didn't believe me.Smiley---(.gif – iridescent 18:55, 22 June 2009 (UTC)

Images of England

Hello Iridescent, as you're a clever chap who uses the IoE website, can you help me with this? In entries such as this, this and this, what does the "1485" refer to? It's not the date of the building - is it a register number of some description? Any suggestions gratefully received. Regards, BencherliteTalk 21:28, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Do you know, I have absolutely no idea. All the ones on any given town or village seem to have the same number (try typing place names into their search bar), which makes me think it's either some kind of grid reference, or a reference to which local authority is responsible for the listing. Giano or DavidCane might know. – iridescent 21:38, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
Thanks - I won't worry about it, then. As for the redlink at FAC, I mentioned it purely because Battersea Park includes a section beginning "'Battersea fields as it was once known was once a popular spot for duelling" before going on to mention Wellington v Winchilsea. (I was hoping to find that Wellington used a cannon, but sadly no...) In any case, I got rid of another redlink myself, to help the cause along. Regards, BencherliteTalk 23:12, 17 June 2009 (UTC)
Excellent work on Page, thanks – it's remarkable how many 19th century engineers are still redlinks or ultrastubs, given Wikipedia's "techie" bias in its user base. – iridescent 15:45, 19 June 2009 (UTC)
No problem, one good turn deserves another etc, and I think I'm now only slightly (rather than substantially) in debt to you, following your help at my FAC. It made a change from writing about writing about minor 17th/18th/19th-century Welsh clergy.... BencherliteTalk 17:34, 19 June 2009 (UTC)

Established Editors

Discussion of objectives here. Peter Damian (talk) 20:05, 18 June 2009 (UTC)

Please read?

I apologize to you Iridescent for offending you. You are right .. I was wrong. I did not realize that the wording I used could be considered to be abrupt and offensive, and I am truly sorry. I apologize for my "American arrogance", and for my uncalled for familiarity. I will do my best to improve your views of me by working hard to improve, and reduce my own ignorance. Sincerely Charles H. Davis — Ched :  ?  03:23, 19 June 2009 (UTC)

No problem… – iridescent 14:17, 19 June 2009 (UTC)

Could you clarify

the result of this debate for me. Would I be right in saying everyone agrees to the parameter idea? — Please comment R2 14:05, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

I think they're agreeing to the parameter idea. I have no idea how the technical side of it works, but I know it's possible as it's what the Beatles project etc use. An the advantage would be that it would make it a lot easier to re-split the project if for any reason the merger didn't work out. – iridescent 14:08, 23 June 2009 (UTC)
Sure, I'm not going to get WP:MJJ and WP:JANET deleted until everything is stable. — Please comment R2 14:12, 23 June 2009 (UTC)


That's very kind of you, thank you. It does look like a good map to use, and I'd be interested in seeing the Rocque 1746 map too, if it's no trouble. Much appreciated. :) SlimVirgin talk|contribs 00:52, 23 June 2009 (UTC)

Uploaded as File:North Southwark 1746.png; again, I've left a lot of space around the boundaries to let you crop it down as necessary. – iridescent 07:35, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
Thank you, that's very helpful. SlimVirgin talk|contribs 02:49, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

When's the rent due?

You'll be getting charged rental on the main page soon. ;-) --Malleus Fatuorum 11:42, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

I saw that – I have a feeling it's an artefact of alphabetical order. Not the one I'd have chosen – if Raul wants a Haringey one, Noel Park is far better in pretty much every respect – but it might cheer Giano up to have a stately home on the front page. – iridescent 16:06, 24 June 2009 (UTC)


Thanks for your input on the US FAC. You wrote:"but there just seem to be too many "well, everyone known that" assumptions such as "Superman, the quintessential comic book superhero, has become an American icon" (again, unreferenced and not mentioned in any of the linked subarticles)"

I hope to have resolved the issue about the Superman statement with a suitable ref. Can you give me a couple more examples of such 'assumptions' without references? GeometryGirl (talk) 17:21, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

On a skim through:
  1. "The indigenous peoples of the U.S. mainland, including Alaska Natives, migrated from Asia" is presented as fact (and uncited), when it's in fact highly disputed; see Models of migration to the New World#Australia/Oceania model and Models of migration to the New World#Atlantic coastal model;
  2. "The loss of the buffalo, a primary resource for the plains Indians, was an existential blow to many native cultures" is unsourced and not mentioned in any of the listed subarticles, and "existential blow" looks like weasel wording to me; did it damage their economies? Affect religious worship based on animism? Symbolise the power of industrialised societies to control nature and thus encourage people to give up agricultural life to work in cities? Say so;
    Shouldn't this be "bison" rather than "buffalo" anyway? I remember reading somewhere that by the time of Buffalo Bill there were hardly any buffalo left, and what he shot were bison. --Malleus Fatuorum 23:16, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
    The American buffalo is actually a bison. You are correct. Law type! snype? 23:42, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
  3. "Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation committed the Union to ending slavery" is incorrect. The Emancipation Proclamation ended slavery in "the States, and parts of states, if any, in which the people thereof respectively, shall then be in rebellion against the United States", and explicitly exempted Kentucky, Missouri, Maryland, Delaware, West Virginia, Tennessee, and large chunks of Louisiana (including New Orleans itself) and Virginia from emancipation.
  4. "In 1917, the United States joined the Allies, turning the tide against the Central Powers" is unsourced and extremely debatable;
  5. "On December 7, 1941, the United States joined the Allies against the Axis powers after a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor by Japan" is flat-out untrue and a serious distortion of a turning point in US (and world) history. For four days after Pearl Harbour, the US was only at war with Japan while still remaining neutral regarding the war in Europe, and only joined the war in Europe on December 11 when Germany and Italy declared war on the US (not the other way round). The current wording feeds the "America selflessly stepped up to defend freedom" myth; it was by no means a foregone conclusion that the US would have intervened in Europe had the Axis not declared war (Russia, for instance, maintained relations with Japan right through to 1945 despite being at war with Germany);
  6. As mentioned at the FAC, the entire "Cold War and protest politics" section is unreferenced; the current wording also implies (although not explicitly saying) that the Apollo landings took place under Kennedy or Johnson, rather than Nixon;
  7. Again as mentioned at the FAC, "The leadership role taken by the United States and its allies in the UN–sanctioned Gulf War, under President George H. W. Bush, and the Yugoslav wars, under President Bill Clinton, helped to preserve its position as a superpower" is both unreferenced and spectacularly POV. The US's position is far more likely to have been a result of having the strongest GDP, being the site of the high-tech firms leading the internet revolution, and the possession of 25,000 nuclear warheads – any "leadership role" by the US in the collapse of Yugoslavia was not exactly apparent at the time (start of war, 1991; start of Nato intervention, 1995; nationality of commanders of said Nato intervention, Belgian and Spanish);
  8. "The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation" is a bit tenuous and depends on one's interpretation of "surviving" and "federation"; aside from an interruption between 1798–1848, Switzerland's federal structure dates back to 1291, and using Wikipedia's definition of Federation ("a union comprising a number of partially self-governing states or regions united by a central government") one could even make a case for the British Empire. Again, this sentence is unsourced;
  9. "The Supreme Court, led by the Chief Justice of the United States, has nine members, who serve for life" is untrue; they serve until death, resignation, retirement, or conviction on impeachment;
  10. Not an uncited fact in this case, but what is the need for "The cost of the Iraq War to the United States has been estimated to reach $2.7 trillion. As of May 3, 2009, the United States had suffered 4,284 military fatalities during the war and over 31,000 wounded."? The article doesn't give costs or casualty figures for any other war, including those such as Afghanistan where the war is still ongoing;
  11. A statement as contententious as "the United States maintains the highest labor productivity in the world" needs a citation; again, no mention in the Economy of the United States subarticle;
  12. "The United States has been a leader in scientific research and technological innovation since the late 19th century" may well be true but it needs a source;
  13. Nikola Tesla did indeed invent the AC motor, but he invented it in 1882 in France, and only moved to the US two years later;
  14. "The five largest airlines in the world by passengers carried are American" is untrue according to your own source, unless China Southern Airlines is American;
  15. I've no doubt it's true, but "Several insular territories grant official recognition to their native languages, along with English: Samoan and Chamorro are recognized by American Samoa and Guam, respectively; Carolinian and Chamorro are recognized by the Northern Mariana Islands; Spanish is an official language of Puerto Rico" needs sourcing (it's mentioned in the subarticle, but unsourced there too);
  16. "Aside from the now small Native American and Native Hawaiian populations, nearly all Americans or their ancestors immigrated within the past five centuries". Nearly all? Who didn't?
  17. "Same-sex marriage is contentious. Several states permit civil unions in lieu of marriage. Since 2003, four state supreme courts have ruled bans on same-sex marriage unconstitutional, while voters in more than a dozen states approved constitutional bans on the practice. In 2009, Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire became the first states to permit same-sex marriage through legislative action." all needs sourcing;
  18. "In the 1960s, Bob Dylan emerged from the folk revival to become one of America's greatest songwriters" is a personal opinion. Plenty of people can't stand him. You can say "bestselling", "multiple award winning" etc with sources to back it up, but "greatest" is a meaningless peacock term in the Wikipedia context;
  19. Likewise, "Emily Dickinson, virtually unknown during her lifetime, is now recognized as an essential American poet";
  20. "Ayn Rand's objectivism won mainstream popularity" warrants a [citation needed] in inch-high flashing red letters; I doubt 95% of "the mainstream" has ever heard of her, and I'll wager that a substantial proportion of those who have consider her a crank;
  21. "Traditional American cuisine uses ingredients such as turkey, white-tailed deer venison, potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, squash, and maple syrup, indigenous foods employed by Native Americans and early European settlers" – really? I can safely say that I have never eaten white-tailed deer venison; again, no reference and no mention in the Cuisine of the United States subarticle, other than a passing mention of "the more commonly hunted and eaten game included deer" when talking about 17th-century cookery;
  22. "Frequent dining at fast food outlets is associated with what health officials call the American obesity epidemic" – again, unreferenced.
Sorry to dump such a laundry-list on you, but you did ask… The basic structure of the article is sound; the trouble with high traffic articles like this is that large numbers of people tend to drop their opinions onto them, and don't understand (or care) about sourcing. It is all fixable! If it's OK with you, I'll post this list at the FAC itself as well, to avoid people repeating points I've already mentioned. – iridescent 19:06, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
Further clarificatory note; some of these (such as whether to include the alternative migration models) may well already have been discussed ad nauseam at the talkpage; don't necessarily take anything I've said here as gospel. – iridescent 18:27, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

That list is impressive idirescent! Especially for a 'skim through'. The following is to help me keep track of progress: GeometryGirl (talk) 17:01, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

6) Asked for help at the Cold War portal
9) Started a thread on talk page.
12) Asked for help at the Technology portal
14) Done.
17) Soon fixed. See here.
18) Started a thread on talk page.
19) Done.
20) Added citation needed.
22) Asked for help at the Food portal


I made this same kind of comment just a little prior, and I got Lar insinuating that I was a troll for it. :) Ottava Rima (talk) 23:09, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

PS, I almost barfed when I saw a certain image above. One of the worse discussions I've ever had in academia was a professor explaining why a cuttlefish would be a turn on to a goddess. Ottava Rima (talk) 23:11, 24 June 2009 (UTC)
Take it you didn't see the original image that prompted the discussion, which makes the squid-porn seem virtually normal. Yes, those are oreos. – iridescent 17:22, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

Interesting image....--The Legendary Sky Attacker 04:43, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

Expanding abbreviations can be helpful. WP:OWN → Wikipedia:Ownership of articles. Let's dispel this myth that that policy applies outside the article namespace, please. --MZMcBride (talk) 17:59, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

And WP:UP#OWNWikipedia:User page#Ownership and editing of pages in the user space, complete with "Community policies […] apply to your user space, just as they do elsewhere". – iridescent 18:09, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. Just pointing out that you linked to the wrong place. One might say you were being pedantic by correcting Griffin's "owner of the talkpage" comment. I'm just returning the favor. ;-) Cheers. --MZMcBride (talk) 20:05, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

I knew I would find a discussion about me somewhere. MZ, I clicked your link, but IMO I don't think it applies in this case. The link says that a user may remove anything they want from their talk page (except warnings/blocks), and also per Wikipedia:Don't restore removed comments (it's an essay however). Jimbo said he didn't want the letter on his talk page and that he didn't want to be involved in the discussion. Larry and a few others kept readding it, even after we (User:DavidShankbone, me, and maybe a few others [my memory isn't that good]) asked them to stop per Jimbo's comments. Griffinofwales2 (talk) 15:30, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

Technically it's not actually about me, I saw my name and wanted to butt in. I'm not even sure what's going on here. I need to get some more sleep. Griffinofwales2 (talk) 15:33, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

User page question

Hey, when I try to insert this on my user page it completely messes everything up. Any idea how to fix this? — Please comment R2 18:37, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

Huh. Absolutely no idea – there's certainly no markup code in what you were adding that would distort the layout of the page – but this version is having the same effect to me, so it's not just a quirk of your browser. – iridescent 18:44, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Wikipedia must not like my history.... — Please comment R2 18:46, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
There must be someone who knows – try Lara or Gurch (since his "facebook" userpage, I have a probably exaggerated faith in his page markup abilities). – iridescent 18:58, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
Will do, thanks. — Please comment R2 19:01, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

Please watch... — Please comment R2 21:37, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

My inclination (I won't do any of this myself, as I'm involved) would be to protect the main article until it's clear what's happened, and leave the relatively low-traffic health article unprotected, as flypaper for the BLP-pushers, until it's clear exactly what's happened. (Something obviously has.) As I say, I won't do this myself but feel free to point other people towards this. FYI, have also posted at WP:AN asking for as many eyes as possible on it for the next few minutes. – iridescent 21:41, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

Advice (for what it's worth)

Don't know if/when you'll see this, but can I advise not touching the article for a couple of days. Let the vandals and cranks have their say, and let someone else do the reverting. In a couple of days when it's clearer what exactly has happened, then go back and clean up whatever they've left behind. Enough eyes are on the article, and trying to keep it clean by yourself will just wear you out. Giano's advice regarding articles on the main page applies just as much here; once the vandals and the reverters are through, the article will end up more or less back where it started, whoever does the actual editing. – iridescent 23:36, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

Sure, I can revert back to a clean version and incorporate improvements later. This is a very sad day, he didn't deserve this, despite his faults. — Please comment R2 02:40, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
I agree. I'm just old enough to remember Lennon's murder, and that's the only comparable moment I can think of. Whatever one's opinion of him, for most people worldwide between the ages of 15 and 50, he's formed a significant part of the background to their entire life; whether they loved him, hated him, or didn't really care, most people probably knew more about him than about many of their own relatives. I can think of no-one – even the Beatles, Kennedy, Elvis – with as much of a global cultural impact in their lifetime. Even if one hated everything he stood for, this is the end of something unique. – iridescent 22:28, 26 June 2009 (UTC)


Why have you made your userpage black? Simply south (talk) 17:55, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

See this and all that links from it. I think I share with all those involved in trying to keep a degree of order in our most high-profile incident at least since Siegenthaler and possibly ever – and abused from all sides and plastered across the media for it – total exhaustion from this. Normal service can be resumed after the funeral and when edit patterns on the site start to drift back to normal (in case you're not aware, the link received so many hits today that, inter alia, Google's monitoring systems flagged it as a denial-of-service attack); until then we're not in normal modes of working. Michael Jackson is currently the most visited page on the entire internet, and while WP:BLP may no longer applies to him, it does still apply to the hundreds of family members, friends, fellow artists and business associates mentioned on the assorted articles in the center of this firestorm. – iridescent 19:14, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

Talk: Michael Jackson

Your threat to block me is IMO incredibly inappropriate and uncivil. Details are on my talk page. Shiggity (talk) 21:16, 26 June 2009 (UTC)

No. As far as I can tell you've been warned by four different people about your behaviour. Until the sources exist we're not going to include your original research. – iridescent 21:18, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
I have blocked the user for edits after your warning that I believe constitute at the very least a violation of the spirit of edit warring. As usual, any admin can overturn me with good cause Fritzpoll (talk) 21:30, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
Obviously endorse this. When the stats are released tomorrow this is almost going to be our most visited page of all time for a single day (1% of all wikipedia traffic yesterday was to this page, despite the story only being live for the last three hours of the day); we really don't need everyone with a pet theory editwarring for its inclusion. – iridescent 21:33, 26 June 2009 (UTC)
It should be noted that the "edit war" mentioned here concerned edits made to the TALK PAGE, NOT to the article itself. Namely, I was restoring content I had added to the TALK PAGE which was summarily deleted by a SINGLE USER who refused to discuss his reasons for removal on the TALK PAGE, which is what the talk page is for. Then when I attempted to come to consensus about what content should be left on the talk page, by leaving a section on the talk page indicating such, I was blocked for continuing to participate in an edit war "in spirit," which is patently absurd. It was stated that I didn't have sources for the content I was suggesting be looked at. Indeed; had I had content, I would have put the content in the ARTICLE, rather than bringing it up on the TALK PAGE. This is yet another example of overly zealous Wikipedians making terrible judgment calls and being terribly rude in the process. In my humble opinion, whatever series of events led to Iridescent becoming an admin certainly does NOT prove that, as an admin, Iridescent can refrain from flagrantly abusing the trust and authority given. Shiggity (talk) 05:24, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Yes, yes. Note that you continued to re-add your reverted section six times despite it being removed by multiple users, that on only one of those occasions was the removal by me, that it wasn't me who blocked you, and that since your talkpage already has a discussion of 3RR you can't say you're unfamiliar with the concept. If you want to complain, ANI is that way. – iridescent 11:41, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

Star Wars Action News

You wrote, CSD isn't shoot-till-you-win. The problem is that when I re-tagged the article, it was under a different criterion than the one you declined. But I will go to AfD. -- Blanchardb -MeMyEarsMyMouth- timed 14:05, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

It was initially tagged {{db-A7}}; when that was declined, it was re-tagged {{db-web}}, which is a redirect to {{db-A7}}. "There have also been interviews on the show with […] Samuel L. Jackson, Alan Dean Foster, Donald F. Glut, James Kahn, L. Neil Smith, and Timothy Zahn" immediately establishes that this isn't some guy-in-his-basement fancruft site, and that {{db-A7}} doesn't apply. – iridescent 14:10, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

Naming conventions question

Andy Bathgate is an old ice hockey player. His son is also an ice hockey player, and they have the same name. The article was created as Andy Bathgate (b. 1991). I moved it to Andy Bathgate (hockey player), as I believe that's the standard. The article was then moved to Andy Bathgate (ice hockey b. 1991) and the previous redirected to the father.

Okay, so the current title, which includes (ice hockey b. 1991) seems wrong. Considering they have the same name and same profession, how should this be disambiguated? I ask you because you know everything. لennavecia 15:52, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

Seems to me that Winston Churchill might be a good model to follow. Whichever of the Bathgate's is the better known can have Andy Bathgate and the other one(s) one of the variations like Andy Bathgate (born 1991), depending. --Malleus Fatuorum 17:09, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
Agree with Malleus. If there's no obvious "more important one", there's also the "middle initial" solution, as most obviously demonstrated by George Bush. – iridescent 15:25, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

I need your opinion

I am writing an essay to post in the Wikipedia namespace here. There are two things I would like to know before I keep going:

  1. Do you believe I'm on the right track so far?
  2. Do you believe that essay duplicates WP:SCRABBLE?

-- Blanchardb -MeMyEarsMyMouth- timed 16:37, 29 June 2009 (UTC)

2 comments from me...
1. Notability didn't exist as a guideline in 2001.
2. The "nothing can be done..." bit seems to presume that a notability argument in an AfD is correct. This is generally, but not universally, true, and would be improved by a qualifier. Jclemens (talk) 17:18, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
I just added the qualifier. Thanks. -- Blanchardb -MeMyEarsMyMouth- timed 17:28, 29 June 2009 (UTC)
I disagree with the "It depends whether you have a relationship with the subject or not" part. It's perfectly possible to write a sourced and neutral article on yourself, as long as one can detach oneself from the subject. See Sasha Grey, Zaynab Khadr, Elonka Dunin, Franklin Delano Roosevelt III, Poppy Z. Brite, Charles Ingram… (if that lot all turned up to Wikipedia Meetups I'm sure they'd be a lot more interesting). – iridescent 15:39, 30 June 2009 (UTC)
I just went live. WP:AKON. -- Blanchardb -MeMyEarsMyMouth- timed 03:54, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Punctuation and inline citations

See WP:PAIC, "Inline citations are generally placed after any punctuation such as a comma or period, with no intervening space." Tom B (talk) 21:37, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

And I'll see that, and raise you WP:REFPUNCT, and "Some editors prefer the in-house style of journals such as Nature, which place references before punctuation. If an article has evolved using predominantly one style of ref tag placement, the whole article should conform to that style unless there is a consensus to change it." – iridescent 13:22, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Thank You

Hi Iridescent. I wanted to stop by and say thank you! I'll do my best not to drift off into a "but I (any one of numerous self-justification/rationalization excuses here)" threads. I greatly appreciate you taking the time to help me get up to speed on this topic. I can see clearly now that there were many items that I was completely unaware of. There are a ton of things I completely agree with you on, and I appreciate you taking the time to explain so many various items to me. Even if I don't always agree with someone on a topic, I still want to hear all sides of it. It's the only way I feel I can develop an informed opinion. Without a doubt, there were numerous items, threads, links, and issues that I was completely unaware of, and I appreciate you helping me "get a clue". Aside from the "destroy" items that became so prevalent throughout the Peter threads, I also found numerous "user names" and this redirect which certainly raised red flags in my thought process. I can see that this is a much more complex topic than I originally thought. As a single parent who raised a daughter on his own, and a strong supporter of animal rights, I can certainly see a great deal of value now to Peters efforts here. I do have to say that if he could perhaps be a bit more subtle in his approach, it might not be such a rocky road - but I understand that we all must travel our own paths. Anyway, thank you once again for all the links, information, time, and input. It has certainly broadened and improved my perspective on the issue. All my best. — Ched :  ?  19:28, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Subtlety can only take you so far Ched. Sometimes you just have to batter at the doors. --Malleus Fatuorum 19:39, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
A general rule is, if you see a block or ban and can't immediately tell what it's for, it's almost certainly a bad block; an awful lot of the internal politics of Wikipedia is the rehashing of stale vendettas from Wikipedia's low point in 2006–07. And for god's sake don't take anything Awbrey has to say too seriously! That's one exception where I do wholeheartedly agree that "sling him off and throw away the key" was the only solution. Expert he may have been, but his obsession with treating Wikipedia as some kind of logic puzzle was wasting so much time for so many people for so long; anyone who's spent any time at all on Wikipedia Review will be aware that he makes one very grateful for the "ignore this user" button. – iridescent 19:46, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
"Ja Ja". He's clearly crazy. --Malleus Fatuorum 20:01, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
LOL ... I'll have to read up on that one. ;) — Ched :  ?  20:07, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

July Metro

Oliver Fury, Esq. message • contributions 21:10, 1 July 2009 (UTC)


Thanks for this. Sorry about that. Oliver Fury, Esq. message • contributions 21:26, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

No need to apologise! (I actually thought the M3 entered London as well, but looking at the A-Z it stops feet from the Surrey border.) – iridescent 21:28, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
OK. The M40 also stops a matter of yards from Greater London, like the M3. That's what DYK's are there for! Cheers :) Oliver Fury, Esq. message • contributions 21:31, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
You might want to remove that Jerry Springer one, unless it has a source, as it makes him out to be a liar and hence is a BLP violation without a source – our own Jerry Springer article says he claims to have been born in Highgate station, not East Finchley – and since Highgate is both very large and deep underground, it's eminently plausible that his mother was using it as a bomb shelter. – iridescent 21:34, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
In the interrview here, he says he was born in East Finchley, which is what I always heard. I'm not sure. Oliver Fury, Esq. message • contributions 21:38, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
As long as there's a source for the East Finchley story, then no problem. (The Springers lived on Finchley Road, so I suspect someone has misremembered the name of the station.) – iridescent 22:10, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Great. Apart from that, what do you think of the July Metro? I don't think it's too bad for a first try. Oliver Fury, Esq. message • contributions 22:16, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
I like it – I think expanding out the DYK section to fill the white space is a really good idea, too. – iridescent 22:25, 1 July 2009 (UTC)
Thanks a lot! Oliver Fury, Esq. message • contributions 22:39, 1 July 2009 (UTC)

Bruce Castle

It may not be a real castle, the readers won't know until they've read the article :-P Because it's got castle in the title I expect Bruce Castle to get a lot of attention while it's on the main page (military articles on the front page are usually very popular). Warwick Castle got over 70,000 views and had to deal with a lot of vandalism and I'd expect Bruce Castle to be on par with that. Congrats on getting it onto the front page, IMO any exposure for castles is good. Nev1 (talk) 00:10, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

Well, is the American Buffalo technically a buffalo, the Montreal Metro technically a railway or the Coelacanth technically a fish? If everyone calls it a castle, then it's a castle.
Thus far, the vandals seem to be leaving it alone. Don't know if that's a bad sign in that no-one's reading it, or a good sign in that they're leaving it alone. Thus far, all it seems to have attracted is an editwarrior citing a policy he appears to have invented for himself that "Infoboxes are encouraged in articles, so if there's one that fits, it should be added" despite it being pointless in this context – if that's really the worst a main page appearance dredges up, I think that's a result. – iridescent 18:11, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

Bruce Castle

Wiki medal.jpg The Featured Article Medal
Well Done. For getting yet another article on the main page. I think it's time you had one of these. --DavidCane (talk) 00:11, 2 July 2009 (UTC)
Thanks! Although I still think Raul would have been better off going with Noel Park if he wanted an "architecture of Haringey" one. – iridescent 16:39, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

PROD of List of place names starting with "The"

I posted my counterargument at Talk:List of place names starting with "The". Spikebrennan (talk) 18:17, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

Replied there. – iridescent 18:35, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

I just (re)read your userpage

I probably like you. LessHeard vanU (talk) 22:51, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

Is it the dubious indie bands that does it, or the kitty-porn? – iridescent 22:57, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

Wow, shameful

o.O. — Please comment R2 23:09, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

Gut reaction; from experience, that utterly mechanical style is the way people act and talk after extreme stress – if you've ever met someone who's just had a relative die unexpectedly, or met soldiers just after combat, that expression and tone will be familiar. (See Flattening of affect for the technical side of how and why.) Remember, this is someone who's not only just lost a son, but is now being smeared across the world's media. I'm actually willing to give him benefit of the doubt on this one. – iridescent 23:16, 4 July 2009 (UTC)


Thriller album will be appearing on the main page on Tuesday, please watchlist it. — Please comment R2 23:06, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

Will do, but I'll probably be mostly away. I suspect you'll be pleasantly surprised at how little it gets vandalised, as every Huggler will have an eye on it; I suspect the main problem will be people editwarring over sales figures. – iridescent 19:46, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
(adding) If you really want to see the vandals in full flight, wait two more days until Gropecunt Lane goes on the main page. I'm still not sure if Raul really realises the size of the dam that's going to burst on that one. – iridescent 22:39, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
In a masochistic kind of way I'm looking forwards to that. :-) --Malleus Fatuorum 00:12, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Thought which occurs to me; you might want to have a word with the people who run Cluebot (no idea who that is, but I imagine posting on User talk:ClueBot will reach them) and the Abuse Filter, to warn them in advance. Otherwise, every time anyone editing from an IP or new account tries to add anything or revert blanking, they'll be automatically tagged as "repeatedly adding obscenities" and their edits reverted. (I think so, anyway – if Gurch is still watching this page he probably knows more than me about how the thing actually works). – iridescent 21:28, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

I hope you are right

"Dave will sure as hell never forget the exact wording of WP:V and WP:RS after the last couple of days" - and that is the best anyone can seem to really hope for around here. Ottava Rima (talk) 22:40, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

I believe it. RFA is not supposed to be a trial by fire (look up two threads to see what results from that); it's about trust. I'm not going to support him, as I think those concerns about deletion are serious, but it's not enough to warrant flaming him off the project. (Believe me, he's sure as hell not going to submit an article with dubious sources to FAC/GAC after this, and if he makes an inappropriate deletion based on a misreading of sources, I'll be the first in line to file the RFC.) Despite what some think, I'm not an RFA-opposing fanatic – my tendency to oppose is mainly due to the fact that I don't see the point in joining pile-ons (why waste time researching someone when nothing you do will affect the outcome?), so most of those I bother to vote on are borderline candidates where there's likely to be an obvious problem. – iridescent 22:47, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
My theory is this - people don't like my contribs at RfA, so I will limit them. Since I know articles, I will look at those who boast about their article work. Many of those people tend to work in articles with the goal of getting to adminship. Therefore, some of them might have done iffy things in trying to get as many articles done as possible. If they do that, then their personality is probably problematic and they give our articles a bad name. Kill two birds with one stone. Ottava Rima (talk) 22:51, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Disagree with you on that one; the "secret formula" for getting an account through RFA in the current climate is:
  1. Create account;
  2. Write a valid stub article with incorrect formatting (if it's correctly formatted, everyone will think you're a sock);
  3. Go somewhere that will rack up your edits quickly. Twinkle is always good, but you run the risk of messing up; stub sorting or link disambiguation are slower but steadier;
  4. Write a long article with sources. Find someone active at both GAC and RFA and ask them to help you with it. This gets you seen by those people who will vote (sorry, !vote); and give you a reputation as an article writer. Agree with every suggestion made by anyone who appears popular, and always agree with everyone female; remember that most RFA voters are 14 year old boys who automatically follow anything a Hot Chick says, in the hope that if they always agree with her she'll show them her boobies;
  5. Repeat step 4;
  6. Once you have the two long articles under your belt - and only then - request rollback and install Huggle;
  7. Set Huggle to show you your reversions after you make them (you don't want a "rollback removed for misuse" sitting in your log), and rack your edit count to 10,000;
  8. Repeat step 4;
  9. Ask someone (preferably a Hot Chick) if they think you're ready for RFA, but only if you're sure they'll say yes;
  10. Wait until a high-grade flamewar is raging (hint: watch Giano's and Sandy's talkpages) to distract the usual dramamongers and RFA trolls;
  11. Transclude RFA. On one relatively trivial question give an answer that's against policy with a long explanation as to why you don't support policy - this will prove to the freethinkers that you're not a Cabalist. On everything else, spout the party line faithfully - this will prove to the Cabalists that you're one of them. As long as you haven't pissed people off, in a community that thrives on little-tin-gods and petty-empire-building, people see what they want to see in you.
You'll note that this formula only includes three decent-quality articles, plus one low-quality one at the beginning. Article writing isn't a good place to make friends; between content issues and MOS arguments, it's far too easy to pick up enemies. The best thing is to socialize with the "content hardcore" enough to build recognition such that you won't be hit by the "I've never heard of you" opposes, but not mix enough with them to risk expressing an opinion on, well, anything. To all those watching (and this page seems to have more than its fair share of Controversial Characters watching today), when you get blocked, flamed off, or just decide your account carries too much baggage, try it; you'll be surprised just how many people it's worked for successfully.*
*No, I don't see the least problem in advising Wikipedia's thought-criminals how to game the system. Someone complying with rules just to keep up appearances has exactly the same net result as someone with sincerely held beliefs in said rules, with less chance of getting in a destructive argument over policy minutiae. This mechanism has kept every major religion and political system working for millennia without obvious problems. – iridescent 21:28, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
<tongue IN cheek>My. How I royally screwed myself. (snorts). <tongue out of cheek> Although I must admit I see this happen often. Ealdgyth - Talk 21:34, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Your RFA would make interesting reading – the author of every article you've ever failed on reliability of sources would be frantically digging for a pretext to oppose. (If you think there's not much interaction between "reliability of sources" and "RFA suitability", a few minutes in this fine specimen of just what's wrong with Wikipedia's current RFA setup should be educational.) – iridescent 22:55, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
I've been following that ... I forbear to comment because I'm not at all fond of the road project. We clash. I avoid them, and hopefully I won't have to do anything else.... Besides, all anyone would have to do is "Oppose, no need for the tools". At some point, you acquire too many edits to possibly pass RfA, I think I passed that point 20,000 edits or so ago. Ealdgyth - Talk 23:12, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Not My Place To Comment, although read what you will into the fact that I'm joint-top high scorer (along with Mitchazenia) for transport related FAs on the High Score Table, yet not a member of (and have never commented at) WP:ROADS. The difference in tone and general "we don't do that round here" attitude between WT:ROADS and WT:RAIL is striking. – iridescent 23:52, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

murder and murder articles

Thank you for notifying me. I have never looked at CFD so I may abstain and just learn or I may come back in a few days, if it's not too late. I see your point. Considering what the proposed opposition may say is the following: Murder articles are typically "Murder of John Obscure". Articles in the murder category are concepts of law, methods of killing, etc.

If we are strictly to be a scholarly encyclopedia, many of the murder of John Obscure articles are unsuited and not notable. What has made some of them newsworthy is that tabloid TV and the internet has memorialized many of the murders. In the newspaper age before the internet, many similiar murders were covered but in order to get a reference, you have to go to the library and search the microfilm. There were some sensational murders in the 1970's that are not in Wikipedia but less noteworthy murders of the 21st century here.

Do you object to the name of the categories? Or do you object to having one category for concept of murder and another category for articles about actual murders? User F203 (talk) 22:57, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Oh, do go and comment at the CFD (Wikipedia:Categories for discussion/Log/2009 July 6#Category:Murder articles, for any TPS who wants to have a look). In fact, I'm starting to be persuaded by the arguments of some of those there that the split should be Category:Murder cases for the actual offences, and Category:Murder in law (or similar) for articles discussing the concept, legal judgements etc. The former should still keep the "by country" breakdown, though. – iridescent 20:39, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Requests for comment/User page indexing

Please note Wikipedia:Requests for comment/User page indexing has been repurposed from the standard RFC format it was using into a strraw poll format. Please re-visit the RFC to ensure that your previous endorsement(s) are represented in the various proposals and endorse accordingly.

Notice delivery by xenobot 14:02, 8 July 2009 (UTC)


Do you know if the Beyond Edgware book covers the whole line and may cover the historical structure made of the material that the bad wolf could not blow down? Simply south (talk) 19:38, 25 June 2009 (UTC)

Not really; it covers the assorted Northern Heights plans in detail, but doesn't go into a great deal about the already existing structures that were transferred to LT. Because it was built by LNER (and its predecessors) and just inherited by LT without any alterations, you probably need a history of the LNER's suburban services for the actual construction. If you get the chance, it may be worth paying a visit to the Barnet Museum (just up the road from High Barnet tube, check their website first as they have weird opening hours); local history museum bookshops generally have all kinds of obscure books and papers about the area for sale. – iridescent 20:24, 25 June 2009 (UTC)
(Belatedly adding) It also occurs to me that the archives at the London Transport Museum might well have something; they have a little "study room" on the upper floor containing a lot of primary sources, dusty books, and computers for searching their digitised archive material. – iridescent 16:49, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

Need some advice

Hi Iridescent, I need some advice for an article that I'm currently working to expand. The article is John B. Weber and what I'm running into is two contradictory statments from the sources that I'm using. The statments are "He was the youngest colonel in the American Civil War" and "He was one of the youngest colonels in the American Civil War". I'm currently leaving the statement(s) out of the article until I can find other sources. However, if I can't find anything more definitive should I skip the statements or include both with a reference for each? Shinerunner (talk) 22:22, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

Definitely "one of the youngest" not "youngest"; James Martinus Schoonmaker was born June 30, 1842 and commissioned as colonel Nov 24, 1862, at age 20 years 6 months, younger than Weber. On the Confederate side, Henry K. Burgwyn, at 20 years 9 months, was also younger than Weber. – iridescent 2 14:12, 9 July 2009 (UTC)
Thank you for the help. Since Weber lived in my hometown I thought that it is worth my time to expand the article. The local library has a museum section devoted to him including some out of print books. These publications are available for onsite research and I'm trying to get some free time to see if these additional sources will help expand the article. Thanks again for your research and advice. Shinerunner (talk) 21:15, 9 July 2009 (UTC)
It occurs to me that, depending on exact dates of commissioning, there may have been a point at which he was the youngest colonel serving (either because Schoonmaker hadn't yet been commissioned, or that Schoonmaker was already past his 21st birthday when Weber was promoted), so while he can be confirmed as not having been the youngest colonel in the war, he may have been the youngest at a particular point. Unless there's a very reliable source for it though, I'd leave the statement out. Aside from anything else, birth records in this period were often sketchy, especially on the frontier and for those born outside the US, so it will be impossible to give exact ages for some of them. – iridescent 14:56, 10 July 2009 (UTC)
I understand your concerns and I also think that it would be best to leave the statement out. It's a nice sounding bit of trivia but he had more notable accomplishments throughout his life. Shinerunner (talk) 00:24, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

Timeline of the London Underground

I have created a Timeline of the London Underground as a complement to the History of the London Underground article which you might want to have a look at. The references section will follow. I have included all of the opening/closing dates for the various parts of the tube system but have deliberately not included individual station opening/closing dates. I have also kept the dates just to the year of the event as this seems neater and easier to read.

There is probably some more information to be added on the economic side of the history, e.g. 1 billion passengers carried for the first time and the like but I need to do a bit more research in that area. If you spot something is missing or you can think of another "type" of information that the timeline could usefully include let me know.

I have added the timeline to the {{Undergroundconnect}} navbox. --DavidCane (talk) 01:34, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Will have a look when I'm better able to do so. If you haven't already, the timelines in Tim Demuth's Spread of London's Underground would be good for this one. – iridescent 2 14:13, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Sometimes it is helpful to provide inline citations to an article and appropiate external links can be useful too.--The Legendary Sky Attacker 21:58, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Sky Attacker, since between us we are inter alia responsible for 90% of Category:FA-Class London Transport articles, I can promise that both David and myself already know that. This isn't meant to be rude, but while you're more than welcome to hang round this (or any other) talkpage replying to posts, it never hurts to do basic background research into the subject on which you're commenting. In this particular case, David's article conforms entirely correctly to Summary style, which states "There is no need to repeat all the references for the subtopics in the main "Summary style" article, unless they are required to support a specific point" – iridescent 14:50, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

Cats making sweet love

Open editing may be a good way to start an encyclopedia, but I am starting to think that posting video of cats making sweet love is not a good way to finish one, iridescent. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Justindavila (talkcontribs) 21:52, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

Thank you for sharing that. – iridescent 21:54, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

Oleg Lapidus Article

Dear Sir,

Further to your comment on Oleg Lapidus article I added several new references, including article by Mike Cohen in Jewish Telegraph with a mention of Oleg Lapidus as clarinetist and saxaphonist, a recorded broadcast of Channel 9 Israeli TV programme 7:40 with Oleg Lapidus performing, Capital Calendar of Jerusalem newsletter with Oleg Lapidus photograph, two pages of Street Piano London 09 website with Pianocrasher artist statement, etc.

You also mentioned that all the references were self-published by the subject. I obviously included the subject's own website and his social pages on youtube and myspace. All the rest were definitely not published by him.

Could I ask you, please, to have another look at the page now?

Yours sincerely,

Eugenie Absalom --Eugenie Absalom (talk) 13:35, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

To be honest, I still can't see the notability – there's nothing to suggest he's received any coverage in reliable sources (his own letters to editors don't count). If Lapidus's work on Окна can be verified independently, he possibly warrants coverage on Wikipedia from that angle, but other than that the whole "Pianocrasher" thing just looks like any other busker. Although a lot of people think Wikipedia is a "directory of everything", that really isn't the case, and we actually have very strict criteria for the inclusion of musicians, and equally strict criteria for the inclusion of artists, neither of which he appears to meet. – iridescent 16:34, 11 July 2009 (UTC)


For your impressive cojones doing this [10] --Joopercoopers (talk) 23:19, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

It's on the talkpage, if someone really wants to carry it on. I know I'm a complete hypocrite here, given that I yelled at someone a couple of weeks ago for moving posts to the talkpage on an RFC (that "all comments should be moved to the talkpage" rule only applies to user conduct RFCs, for some arcane and probably forgotten reason), but I find it hard to imagine the discussion that would be improved by the addition of a shouting match with Giano. Especially since it would likely wind up with him saying something he shouldn't, and the new Supreme Soviet Advisory Council finding itself short one member before it even started. – iridescent 23:25, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

Civilty warning

Damn right there.[11] I'm appalled. --Malleus Fatuorum 00:35, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

I really don't know what the background to that flareup is and I'm not sure I want to, but it's very odd. Without dredging up the sordid past, this is one user who really should know better than most that people say stupid things when they're frustrated. I'm no great fan of Mattisse (I've never really had any dealings one way or the other) but even if I loathed her that kind of bolt-from-the-blue attack would be unacceptable. – iridescent 00:42, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Mattisse and I have had a love-hate relationship, and still do, but I recognise her many great contributions to the project, and so I support her whenever I can. Rootology, on the other hand, is not an editor who has impressed me. --Malleus Fatuorum 00:56, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Personal attacks

How is telling someone they're fucking with cats not a personal attack? You yourself removed the personal attack from your page not long ago, so I am baffled how you contradict yourself.— dαlus Contribs 01:05, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

As seen here. So, I really am lost. Were you offended by that or weren't you? Your assumption that I'm trying to disrupt to prove a point is insulting. The user was personally attacking you, and I gathered, from your revert, that you were offended by such material. They were warned against doing that before, and as it seems they've been here awhile, they should know better, hence the assumption of bad-faith warning.— dαlus Contribs 01:16, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

"How is telling someone they're fucking with cats not a personal attack?" Because it's not credible, or meant to be a documentary account of an actual event? This whole NPA/CIVILITY stuff has got way out of hand. Soon you'll be afraid to tell me that you disagree with me, in case I take offence. ;-) --Malleus Fatuorum 01:27, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
What Malleus said. Daedalus, you seem to misunderstand "anyone can edit". The fact that I remove irrelevant posts from this page (currently 128kb and rising) does not mean that I consider them "personal attacks". If I did, I'm more than capable of issuing a warning myself. You seem to have no conception of the difference between "frustrated comment" and "personal attack". (For the record, in case my already telling you repeatedly hasn't made it clear, no, I wasn't "offended".) – iridescent 11:54, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Please be less condescending

Please consider that not everyone you post a "warning" to is new. Your posting on my talk page was inconsiderate and condescending and inaccurate. The fact that you are the co-proposer of the policy in which I was arguing against leaves a tarnish on what you wrote to me and makes it a clear conflict of interest and smells of an attempt at intimidation of someone who disagrees with your policy, though I will give you the benefit of the doubt and in good-faith consider that you simply were mistaken on what I wrote, for at no point did I ever attack anyone personally, perhaps if you had chosen to make your posting to me personal and typed out specifics instead of using a cookie-cutter that was inaccurate from the beginning this misunderstanding may not have happpened. Further clarification of my position and views on the generic template you used is on my talk page. Unless there are two of you jointly using this one user name at the same time typing there is no WE warning ME about anything, you are not the spokesman for the Wikipedia community, your "warning" was from YOU, you are not a plural, you are an individual to my best knowledge. No need to respond here nor there, since the current and any further postings on this matter on MY talk page are going to be DELETED and not archived per my right, and any reply here on your talk page, well, I just wont be reading as I do not have this on my watchlist nor do I want to. Thanks and please dont post to my talk page again.Camelbinky (talk) 23:38, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

  • Endorse Iridescent's warning as stated. If you don't want to be condescended to, Camelbinky, don't engage in behavior that merits such a warning. That is, had you written a less over-the-top oppose, the warning wouldn't have happened. Jclemens (talk) 01:11, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
What Jclemens said. You'll note that none of the other 50+ opposers received any kind of warning; that's because they opposed with reasoned arguments about the issues, not a torrent of personal abuse. – iridescent 09:41, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
Endorse? LOL really? What is there to endorse? That Iridescent put an anwarranted template on my talk page? Oh, I am so scared officer. Iridescent, you are neither a policeman, judge, jury, or executioner. Per [wp:dont template the regulars] you SHOULD NOT have put that template on my talk page. It was inaccurate and rude, just as that essay states. "Just an essay" or not, it is standard practice, and you should respect it and respect me. My "over the top" "torrent" is MY OPINION which I have the right to state what I feel. I did not attack you or anyone else. You and anyone else have the right to ignore it. Commenting on my talk page with a template that makes it seem "we" as in the community-at-large is censuring me is out-of-line and highly unnecessary. Go and try some real editing of an article instead of spending so much time worrying about me. Funny how people are still talking about this!!!!! WHY?! Seriously get a life and STOP ON HERE OR ANYWHERE TALKING ABOUT ME?! You seem to have a serious problem if after I even state "please dont respond" that someone with no connection comes along and finds a reason to comment and then you comment again. I KNEW I should not have come and look at this, but I had a feeling you couldnt help yourself but have some comment. Seriously stop escalating this and I encourage all others (since this is between me and iridescent ONLY) to stay out of it for any other comments are a clear violation of wikipedia's guidelines on NOT escalating any conflicts. How about everyone keeps their nose out of things. My opinions in a debate are mine, ignore them, but dont try and censor me on MY talk page. I am deleting all references on my talk page to this and I am asking politely for you to stop talking about me, I dont need a stalker, because your "warning" is a personal attack itself, it was not from any "we" as in the community, it was YOUR opinion, your opinion was read, it was ignored, it is disregarded. Thanks for trying to seem important though and as if you have power. Throw me in Wiki-prison officer. As a member of the wikiproject on user warnings I know all too well how meaningless and useless and your powers with warnings are and how outdate that one was and how much it violates the spirit of warnings.Camelbinky (talk) 22:06, 5 July 2009 (UTC)
Thought you weren't watching this page :p?
WP:DTTR is not any kind of standard practice, let alone policy, and your saying it is won't make it so. It's a personal essay by User:Hipocrite, and there are many good reasons as to just why it's not policy; the best summary of the arguments against it is probably the list written by DESiegel and Giggy.
And if you think one edit to your talkpage constitutes "stalking" – let alone gives you some kind of right to turn up and post two separate torrents of incoherent abuse on my talkpage – then I'd seriously advise you to calm down. And no, you don't have "the right to state what I feel", when you're throwing round ridiculous allegations like "you are supporting those select few who would use this proposal to gain power and paid editing". (Do you realise just how ridiculous "gain power" on Wikipedia is, BTW?) Incidentally, regarding "Go and try some real editing of an article", I've written 9 FAs from scratch so far this year (including 3 TFAs, for what that's worth). How about you? – iridescent 22:20, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

Camelblinky may not have written any FA's this year but has received a number of barnstars.--The Legendary Sky Attacker 00:07, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Forgive me if I don't give a damn about daft barnstars. You shouldn't take them seriously either. --Malleus Fatuorum 01:27, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Snigger at the puffed out chest and reliance upon one's own self importance. It's not like anyone gives a fuck. LMAO --WebHamster 09:29, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Renaming this thread?

How about we retitle this thread "Please help me learn to not dish it out if I can't take it" or perhaps "Please help me grow a thicker skin". Thoughts? Jclemens (talk) 16:21, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Camelbinky has written a GA, Port of Albany-Rensselaer, which I reviewed and tidied up while using the "Crystal whacker" alias. Iridescent, you should remember that your own civility record is less than perfect. [No diff; you know what I'm talking about.] (talk) 18:19, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
As a matter of interest, can you name anyone who has a perfect record of civility? I'm not even certain I understand what "a perfect record of civility" means anyway. --Malleus Fatuorum 18:51, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Even Jesus had civility issues---Balloonman NO! I'm Spartacus! 19:09, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
(re Crystal whacker) Huh? Looking through your contribution and talkpage history, the only dealings I've ever had with you that I can see are here and here, where I don't think the most fanatical Civility Police member could find anything remotely objectionable, and a conversation on Suntag's RFA, in which we were disagreeing but I wouldn't call either side uncivil. (Sure, we were arguing in different directions, but the fact that the RFA finished at 71–38 implies that neither of us were in a particularly unreasonable position.) If I have said something to you you thought was rude, I provisionally* apologise for offending you. – iridescent 19:44, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
* "Provisionally", because while I certainly don't remember having any problems with you, you may have said or done something which I thought warranted a rude reply. Contrary to apparent popular belief, I don't think Wikipedia should be a politeness-free free-for-all and do think "don't be the one to start the fight" is generally a good rule to work to. However, I equally disagree with the zealous enforcement of WP:CIV as some kind of holy writ; if someone asks me a rude question, they'll get a rude answer, and likewise I won't shy again from pointing out problems if I see them for fear of offending the subject, if there isn't an obvious "politer" way to express what I feel the problem is. Even in the cases that generally get pointed out as evidence of my "rudeness" – Abd, Shalom Yechiel, Majorly, the whole saga surrounding the deletion of the Awards Center, etc – to be honest, I think you'd struggle to find something that an outside observer would consider rude. People may disagree with me, but that's not the same issue at all. I recognise that one of the strengths of the Wikipedia model, even though it gets annoying at times, is that it does allow people to hold opposing viewpoints without necessarily degenerating into shouting matches.
Even though it may not always be immediately obvious, even these shouting matches can sometimes lead to an increased understanding. My notorious flare-up with Realist2 last year led to my respect for him vastly increasing, as I came to realise just how much hard work he was putting in behind what looked on the surface like constant socializing. A consensus born in a thousand shouting-matches has led to vastly improved relations between myself and Majorly, and far more appreciation on my part for what he's trying to do and why (even though I still disagree with it). Even the truly venomous arguments between myself and Shalom last year led to an increased respect on my part for Shalom and just what he was trying to do, and a thought on my part that maybe I was being too harsh on him; I still stand by my opposition at his RFA, but I can also recognise that the way it was worded obviously upset him unnecessarily (although that said, since every time I've started to think "water under the bridge" he's then either started vandalizing or posted death threats against me on WR, he likely never will get that apology). – iridescent 19:44, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Wow, interesting...I was going to show you this, but now I should remind you of [12] where you observed (correctly) that "Crystal whacker" was neither my first nor last alias. (See "Crystal whacker"'s last edit summary for confirmation. [13])
The fact that "Crystal whacker" managed to get along just fine with you and Majorly was no accident: I sought you out precisely to start out on a new foot, and to convince myself that we all were decent people and could get along with each other (and also to disagree in that one instance). (I might have carried on the charade to seek an RFA nomination but I lost interest long before that would have been possible.)
You continue your pattern of fabricating false statements about me. I never posted death threats against you on WR, as you claim. If you are joking, it's not funny. If you are serious, I would appreciate you showing me a link. Probably the nastiest thing I wrote about you on WR was this: "I've thrown around the word "defamation" half seriously in response to Iridescent's allegation that I harassed real-world individuals, but I would not sue her for it even if I knew who she were. It hasn't actually damaged my real-world standing; I'm just pissed off as hell. But if I were editing with my username fully equal to my real name, as Alastair does, I might consider that defamation worthy of a real world response." [14] I am no longer pissed off as hell, but I will say your claim that I engaged in a campaign of harassment against the president of my alma mater misunderstands what occurs, and belies the fact that (although we have not seen each other since I graduated) we remain on good speaking terms.
I accept your admission that you might have worded your response to my inquiries more delicately. I also admit that my blatant baiting of you as "Iridescent's talkpage troll" and "Kivel" was inappropriate. Since an apology implies, among other things, the desire to restart a relationship on good terms, and since that does not seem relevant in this case, I think I have received all I could have asked for. Chutznik (talk) 21:05, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
I think the above means wipe the slate clean and stay away from each other, in which case I accept (and while I can't speak for him, I dare say Majorly does as well); this has gone on a year now to nobody's benefit. (FWIW the "death threats" were here. Since you (a) don't know my name, (b) don't know my address and (c) live between 2,000 and 4,000 miles from me, depending on where I happen to be at any given time, I take it as a frustrated figure of speech, not a "real" threat, but it was certainly there.) – iridescent 21:13, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
Yes, you are correct on both counts. I've mostly not been editing recently, but I may return sporadically. I have alternatively "retired" or had indef-blocked five accounts with 100 or more edits (Placeholder account, Shalom, Buki ben Yogli, Crystal whacker, Kivel). I consider myself exiled from Wikipedia, not really banned but not welcome either. In that context, I have neither need nor intent to interact with you or Majorly, except to oppose you in a hypothetical election, or for trivial incidental contact such as fixing a spelling mistake.
I'm not sure what might happen to make me feel welcome here again; it was a combination of factors, not just the RFA experience, that have led me to retire, start over, and retire again. Some factors are intensely personal and painful: the "reputation suicide" was, at the time I wrote it, an expression of a more real fear. Overall, I associate my years on Wikipedia, justly or not, with some painful experiences I endured during that time and some bad habits I was doing; and I consider it part of "moving on" to leave the project behind, except to visit once in a while. Of the hundreds (probably at least 2,000) hours I spent here, I consider that time mostly wasted, as my vision of Wikipedia's value to the world, and to my own identity, wanes and recedes. Chutznik (talk) 21:41, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Arbitrary break: Today's sermon is taken from Ecclesiastes, Nabokov and Jimmy Wales

Everyone's time here is wasted. As someone (I think it may actually have been Jon Awbrey before he slipped into total gibberish) once pointed out, part of the way Wikipedia maintains momentum is that one's work decays if not tended, so people tend to come back to clean up the mess even after they've retired. The half-life of the decent content in an article is generally in inverse proportion to its popularity (the deterioration of Michael Jackson last week was so obvious it could be watched in real time). This is both Wikipedia's key strength – that it draws people in faster than it loses them – and what will eventually kill it.

But trying to build something permanent in any medium is an exercise in futility; yes, it will decay, but so does everything. "There is no remembrance of men of old, and even those who are yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow them" is as true today as ever, but so is "So I saw that there is nothing better for people than to enjoy their work, because that is their lot. For who can bring them to see what will happen after them?". The "why bother" mentality is an argument against doing anything, and what the critics of Wikipedia fail to realise is that ultimately, the flaws in the model don't matter because every model is flawed, and every model is doomed to failure. For better or worse, this is currently one of the most visible media in the world, and what we do here affects people's lives more than one might think.

Children read pages here and develop interests that divert the course of their lives; people can look up things they never knew; people can jump in seamless logical progressions from videogame characters to the geography of Uruguay. And there is nowhere else where this is possible. Those who criticise the much-maligned Kid in Africa speech miss the point – and I'm not sure Jimmy Wales himself understood the underlying point – but what is unique here isn't the whole "free knowledge" principle, in either of that phrase's double meanings. There are any number of gratis information providers; there are any number of information providers without a set agenda. But what Wikipedia does is allow people to realise that research isn't some ivory-tower pursuit that they can never aspire to, but something anyone can do and be valued in so doing. The chain of events that begins with a 13-year-old correcting the spelling on a cartoon character can lead to the 23-year-old who isn't willing to accept what they've always been told, and to the 33-year-old who changes the world.

So, don't look on Wikipedia as writing a work that will take a thousand years to die; look on it as a garden. Some people don't have the right mentality to spend year after year pulling up weeds in the sure knowledge that one day the weeds will win, and that's fine, but some people are willing to, with varying degrees of effort. The reason I don't believe Jimmy Wales should be in a position of authority on Wikipedia is not that he's a bad person; it's that I don't really think he appreciates that the Garden of Eden configuration he built has grown into a full-fledged world that's too big for top-down control.

I look forward to this post being mercilessly sneered at for years to come by all and sundry, but I suspect a surprising number of people in the most unlikely of places will find themselves agreeing. – iridescent 22:22, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

That may very well be the most intelligent post I've read all day. –Juliancolton | Talk 22:29, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
I don't know whether my agreement with all of that would be surprising or not, but it's just about the best description of wikipedia I've ever seen or heard. --Malleus Fatuorum 00:06, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Um yeah. That was really well written. I'm glad you took the time to write it. Keeper | 76 02:25, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
Agreed, an excellent piece of work. I admire your writing skills Iridescent. — Ched :  ?  02:30, 8 July 2009 (UTC)
(belatedly) - hit it on the head with detailed research. Something I have been meaning to write for ages is the facile nature of so many bird guides, and other factual info, as if there is this gulf between members of the public and prefessional researchers. I have been very please in the last 5-10 years of many fact books moving in the direction of referenced works with much more depth and also detailed sourcing in the indexes. PS: Did you see Kelly Pool? best example of this so far. Casliber (talk · contribs) 23:02, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
Now that is the kind of article we need more of. One of my pet rants with which I periodically annoy Fowler&fowler at FAC is that I see the "core topic" articles as the least important part of Wikipedia. There are any number of other places where one could find out about Christopher Columbus, but how many other well-written and referenced sources are there for someone wanting to know about Richard Hakluyt? – iridescent 23:10, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
Nope I never saw that Kelly pool article before,[15] but of course Iridescent is once again quite right. It's the out-of-the-way articles that makes wikipedia stand out. You can find out about the "big subjects" anywhere. --Malleus Fatuorum 23:15, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

Speak of the ....

Iridescent, you wrote today, Even in the cases that generally get pointed out as evidence of my "rudeness" – Abd, [et al] - to be honest, I think you'd struggle to find something that an outside observer would consider rude.

I was quite surprised to see this, since if I were asked to list administrators whose lack of civility was a serious problem, you would not be on the list. I've seen you refer a number of times to what must be about your block of me almost a year ago, and it is apparent that some aspect of that isn't resolved for you. I don't know if you have noticed that, on many occasions, I have referred to your action blocking me, and your immediate recusal from further action, as an example of how to do a block non-disruptively. That doesn't mean that I agree that the block was proper, for you didn't understand what was happening; nevertheless, lots of people don't understand what was happening, and if we insisted on full understanding before action, we'd be paralyzed. You invested some time researching my background, and that it was hopelessly inadequate and that you jumped to conclusions wasn't exactly your fault, it simply comes with the territory. Lots of people don't understand me at first, and sometimes it takes years.

You made some errors with that block, but, because you immediately recused, you made them moot. I would not take an admin to ArbComm over a mere error; by recusing, you turned what could have been Iridescent vs. Abd into a relationship and discussion between the community and me. Because the beginning of the block process was Jehochman's warning of me, and because that was deeply rooted in prior interactions that were clearly interfering with our relationship, and he had made, directly, some very serious charges, I did run a self-RfC to gain some confirmation, then ran ordinary DR with Jehochman, and, as often happens with reasonable editors, we really didn't need to go more than one rung up the ladder. Jehochman, now, I consider one of my best wikifriends. I never went through this process with you because you had not created the necessity.

But we might consider it. Iridescent, do you have any continuing complaint about my behavior as an editor? Would you care to explore it? If not, I'd suggest, you should drop the continued mention of it. I'd prefer to work out whatever disagreements we might have of any weight and not allow them to damage future interactions. I am not a critic of you as an administrator, whereas I do have serious problems with how other administrators, sometimes, have conducted themselves. I do not hold a negative opinion of you, at all. Are you holding on to one of me?

You might be surprised to hear that I agree with much of what you wrote in the thread above where you mentioned my name. However, I've also been working on the problems of organizational structure for what have recently been called "starfish organizations" for roughly thirty years. (This is a reference to The Starfish and the Spider).

And now, what I'm actually about

There are aspects to the organizational problem that you have not yet discovered; one of these would be that true starfish don't own property; property is owned by spiders, and spiders have heads. Starfish organizations normally function on a very local level, with decisions being made locally, and that's how the vast majority of work on Wikipedia is accomplished. But Wikipedia has centralized access, which requires ownership and legal responsibility. It also has centralized "non-negotiable" policy, the same. It's possible to conceive of a truly decentralized encyclopedia, but it would look quite different from Wikipedia; Wikipedia is a hybrid, like all the reasonably stable large-scale quasi-starfish of late; there is a starfish (the editorial community), and there is a spider, the Foundation. The property is owned by the Foundation, which exists in symbiosis with the editorial community, both need each other under current conditions. Neither controls the other, the relationship is consensual and voluntary.

The Foundation has chosen to continue to designate a manager who does have operating authority; that authority is rarely exercised directly; it's possible, though, that to cut certain Gordian knots, there should be more use of focused authority; the sign of the wisdom of this would be that it would be confirmed by increased consensus when discussion has broadened sufficiently.

The real power is in the hands of the community, but the community is not organized sufficiently to make coherent decisions quickly. That could be changed, and the implications of this would be huge. (Note, though, that the changes that most people would imagine as improvements would likely destroy the starfish character, creating, instead, some kind of oligarchy.) For now, though, one of the signs that Wikipedia isn't yet ready to "Come of Age," is the lack of consensus over Jimbo's block in May of a popular administrator for incivility.

If we were ready, we'd have either confirmed this action, or we would have clearly rejected it, and we'd have done one or the other efficiently, and our consensus would have been clear and effective, and formed within a matter of days without disruption.

AA Comes of Age was a book written by Bill Wilson when the membership of Alcoholics Anonymous, through the formation of the General Service Conference, a supermajority-elected body with provisions for minority representation and a strong traditions of seeking complete consensus, was able to begin to coherently advise the Board; but legal responsibility still remained, and still remains, with the Board, over the affairs of Alcoholics World Services, Inc. But not over the fellowship itself, for "AA ought never be organized," the central work of AA is in the local groups, which are all independent and not supported by AAWS; indeed, the money flows entirely the other way, just as Wikipedia doesn't pay or subsidize editorial groups, but editors can and do fund Wikipedia. AAWS, though, would not accept large gifts or grants, because Bill Wilson understood the danger and established strong traditions against that kind of funding. AAWS, Inc., is continually and directly dependent upon the voluntary support of the members, through the purchase of literature (at low prices, in fact, roughly distributor equivalent), and through relatively small donations, I think the current limit is $3000 for a bequest.

Why this talk of Alcoholics Anonymous? Because it is a classic starfish, and practically bulletproof because of it. AA was a phenomenal success, it spread like wildfire, until it reached a position where there is no real competition. Yet it has no central authority. Local intergroups in some metropolitan areas sometimes publish their own literature, and every group is free to structure itself; there are some very simple rules about what an AA group can and cannot do, and even these are sometimes disregarded; only a violation that threatened to seriously damage AA as a whole would bring some kind of legal intervention from the central office, prohibiting the use of the AA name.

I'm not an alcoholic, but AA has long been an example for students of anarchic structure that nevertheless, through consensus, develops a high level of coherence. Bill Wilson carefully documented the structure of AA. Later, other work with other organizations developed techniques of negotiating consensus that far surpass what we do; our process is quite primitive in comparison, yet Wikipedia grew so quickly and the default power structure so rapidly that it has become quite conservative and resistant to change; none of this is really surprising, it's quite what would be expected from limitations in the founding vision. Which was brilliant, but not necessarily deeply understood.

--Abd (talk) 16:52, 7 July 2009 (UTC)

Brief1 point-by-point reply:
The reason my block of you gets mentioned quite a lot isn't that I'm obsessed by it, but that I think it's probably the only genuinely controversial admin action I've ever taken. (Oh, I've done plenty that have been overturned, but they've all been relatively minor.) Plus, it's AFAIK the only block of mine that could be construed (at least in some light) as that famous beast of the Wikipedia jungle, a Civility Block Of An Established Editor, and I'm generally seen as one of those fighting to drastically loosen Wikipedia's civility policy, and thus it has a particular interest to those (thankfully few) people who have a serious interest in what I do here.
Do I have any particular complaint with your behaviour as an editor? To be honest, I've little opinion on your behaviour as an editor lately. We have virtually no overlap. The sole time I've come across you lately, at Cold fusion, I will say that I think your position is absolutely and fundamentally wrong and say (through gritted teeth) that JzG is right; from what I've seen of it, you appear to place far too much on fringe sources, and to have a view of "equal treatment" that doesn't tally with reality. Something that's often said in the context of medicine is, "there's no such thing as alternative medicine, because if it works it's just medicine", and the vast majority of reasonable people would concur that the same is the case with cold fusion; just because there are a few isolated voices arguing against the mainstream view doesn't mean we should treat them with equal seriousness as we do the mainstream consensus. In a neat bit of symmetry, I suspect Shalom will agree with me on this one.
That said, CF is only a single case, and I've not seen enough of you elsewhere to judge whether you're overall a good, bad, or "who cares?" influence. Since the chances of any future overlap between us are minimal, I can't see a point in a discussion of it; as far as I'm concerned, any problems are long in the past.
I disagree with both the top-down hierarchy, and a flattened down "starfish" model. In my view, the model of control which would best suit a vastly expanded Wikipedia as we head towards the 10 million article mark would be a Menshevik cellular pyramid model, as used most famously in recent times by clandestine cell systems2, limiting administrative actions to people within a certain number of steps on the pyramid (so, for instance, an article on the New York Subway could only be deleted by an admin associated with the WP:NYC or WP:TRAINS projects).
This would revolutionise the hierarchy.
  1. At a stroke, we'd lose the "never heard of it, delete" problem;
  2. "Mini-adminship" specific to and elected by projects would provide a strong incentive to participate and collaborate with others with a similar interest;
  3. The natural hierarchy of most projects would provide natural "ladders" to climb (someone starting as a WP:LT admin, with powers over only a very limited subset of articles, could move on to become a WP:LONDON or WP:UKRAIL admin; from there to WP:ENGLAND or WP:TRAINS; from there to WP:GEOGRAPHY or WP:ENGINEERING. At each step of the pyramid an increasing but still limited set of articles would fall into their scope; this kind of structure would still maintain Wikipedia's general culture of egalitarianism while avoiding the current "all powerful demigod" admin status. It wouldn't have to be content-specific projects; a dedicated vandal-fighter, for example, could follow the same path up a vandalism project, with their admin abilities restricted to blocking/protecting/deleting against vandals, and not intervening in content disputes. (A huge problem with Wikipedia's current model is the tendency of admins with little knowledge of a particular field, to throw themselves into content disputes on the "right side" based on something they read or heard somewhere.)
Obviously, there are problems with this kind of system, most obviously that it would encourage people to focus on a single area and penalise those who spread themselves around, potentially encourage untouchable dictators in the smaller projects, and a risk of fossilising power structures (the lessons of communism in the 20th century highlight this problem) but I think the benefits would outweigh the negatives. Although the diminishing clique of Rand-worshippers who control this site will never countenance it, so it ain't gonna happen. – iridescent 21:27, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
1Well, you and FT2 are probably the only people here who'd consider this "brief", but I can't think of a way to sum it up more succinctly.
2The best layman's explanation of the clandestine cell system in practice is still The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, if you can forgive some of its more enthusiastic followers.
Thanks, Iridescent, I appreciate your response. Some points:
  • Cold fusion: I was totally uninvolved with cold fusion in January when I discovered JzG's blacklistings. My original concern was amply confirmed by ArbComm. As part of investigating that, I became aware of the situation with cold fusion. By far, the weight of evidence in RS is that "it works." I.e., there is definitely an anomalous phenomenon, excess heat, and, by now, there is extremely strong evidence, confirmed in many peer-reviewed publications, that the origin of the excess heat is a nuclear process, though not necessarily the kind of "fusion" that was originally suspected. It's not my point here to debate this, but only to note that I was skeptical at the outset, having a science background and having been very aware of the 1989 debate at the time. I've spent, now, about six months reviewing the literature and discussing cold fusion with "believers" and "skeptics." What I'd ask from you would be some respect for the possibility that I'm not blowing smoke.... So far, when reviewed in detail, my content positions have been supported, not rejected; they are only rejected, typically with bald reverts, before there has been a detailed examination. It's a highly controversial topic and article, so I move very slowly and carefully, normally, with occasional bold edits when I think it might be time. I seek nothing other than consensus at the article, not any POV.
  • Your block, to my knowledge, was never seriously challenged. Perhaps, for you, this was a controversial block; one error that I think you made was that I wasn't actually attacking Fritzpoll, I saw an edit by a banned user as IP that appeared to be self-identifying as Fritzpoll, and, totally taken aback by this, I speculated for a very short time, what if Fritzpoll really was Fredrick day? ("Holy shit!") I didn't start a sock investigation -- as I have for Fd socks many times -- because I quickly concluded it was very, very unlikely, but by this time I was being roundly warned about the "attack." Before you blocked me, I had stated that I would be confining myself to my own Talk space, pending. I wasn't continuing to "attack," but I did defend the reasonableness of what I'd said, not as a reassertion, but simply as defense. But I understand that it looked like attack to you, and, as I noted above, I don't expect administrators to be perfect, to know everything or notice everything. I'd have preferred that you exercise a bit more AGF, and less ridicule of a blocked editor on your own Talk page, but this was very far down the Wikipedia incivility scale.
  • Still on that, I see that you have never been blocked. While that may be commendable, it may also mean that you'd have no sympathy for those who are. My sense is that we need more blocks, particularly for gross incivility, with less perjorative significance. To be short-blocked for incivility should be no more a sign of serious offense than to be told by a bailiff to be quiet in court, or by a chair to sit down and not interrupt. It can happen to the best of us. I was amused to discover that Jimbo has never been blocked except by compromised accounts. Has he ever been uncivil? I think so, though maybe not. It would be astonishingly unusual, though, for someone as involved as he is to never lose his temper.... I think it's more likely that too many of us would value not risking an admin bit over standing up for policy, and that's unfortunate. Jimbo himself, I suspect, would be amused. Actually, there was one legit one-second block by an admin. I saw no trace that Jimbo even commented on it. Consider and compare that to the recent unfortunate case, where a short block by Jimbo, that didn't actually inhibit the admin at all, resulted in a great huff and a huge flap.
  • As to the "flattened out starfish model," what I've proposed isn't exactly flattened. Rather, a natural hierarchy is created, from the bottom. In other words, what I have had in mind is probably far more like what you have in mind than you realize. The goal is to create conditions where decisions are made, just as you'd like to see, by those who are informed, and that we consider these decisions to have a default kind of consensus where those making the decisions are widely trusted, but not "widely" as in a single person whom a million editors have supported. This actually doesn't take changes to the existing structure, though, eventually, I think we'd see changes as they are found to improve safety and efficiency. What it does take is establishing visible -- (or invisible but known to the participants, as in the cellular systems you refer to) -- communication/filtering links.
  • The Moon is a Harsh Mistress was one of my favorite books. When it was new. What I figured out, over the last thirty years, Iridescent, was how to get there from here. No, not the Moon, and intelligent computers are not required. Rather, structures for rapidly forming consensus with large numbers of people. Real consensus, not mere majority rule. And efficiently. --Abd (talk) 22:58, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
  • We're not going to agree on CF, and I disagree that there's any serious and credible suggestion – other than from a tiny fringe – that there's a nuclear reaction taking place at anything significantly above what would be expected from background radiation (AFAIK there's never been a replicable CF demonstration that's generated anything more significant than the emissions increase one would get from firing a neutron stream at a paraffin disc). Absence of evidence isn't evidence of absence, but the fact that there's so little serious research taking place, and in a field where blue-sky thinking is actively encouraged, speaks volumes; I think it's vanishingly unlikely that it will ever prove to be anything other than another red mercury. But that's irrelevant; what I do believe, and where I think you're fundamentally wrong, is that our aim isn't to report the truth, but to conform to consensus, and the consensus in mainstream journals is overwhelmingly against CF.
  • Your block is so far in the past, it's irrelevant to be honest. It may not seem controversial to you, but if you skim through my block log (there's a link at the top of this page) you'll see that it's far more controversial than any of the others, in that it was the only one to which someone could have made a credible challenge.
  • This account has never been blocked, but the main reason for this account's creation was that I was fed up with being blocked as an IP. This was back in pre-Siegenthaler days, when IP editing didn't have the limitations it does now and there was no particular reason to have an account, but one was certainly more likely to get blocked for saying anything remotely controversial as an IP. I'd love to see a way to render block logs invisible in the manner of spent criminal convictions IRL (say, the entries drop off the log after six months or six times the length of the block served, whichever is the later) as a means of reducing the zOMG this account was blocked!! stigma, but I can't see it happening.
  • Regarding models of change, as previously said I don't think any kind of proxy system will ever work as a model for Wikipedia; it's far too easily gamed, and far too easy to create unopposable dead-weight blocs. (Probably violating WP:CANVASS by mentioning it, but a number of the comments on both sides here show what the dark side of proxying would look like in a wiki model). As I see it, we should be reducing the internal links within Wikipedia, by breaking an ungovernably large project into small loosely connected factions. While I dislike using the term, as it frightens the horses, the closest real-life model would probably be anarcho-syndicalism. Like I say, the "Free knowledge for free minds" Randroids at the top of Wikipedia would never voluntarily let the change happen, and anything looking like a putsch at this stage is doomed to fail as long as that clique still holds control over the servers, finances, and Arbcom. – iridescent 23:27, 7 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Okay, on CF. You have made a series of statements that are quite easily shown, and from sources of high quality, to be incorrect. You are making a common error: presuming a kind of consensus that existed twenty years ago is still valid, even though there is much contrary secondary academic and peer-reviewed source since then, of higher quality than the rejections in 1989-1990. We are in informal mediation now over some of these issues. So far, so good. It's slow.
Details on cold fusion

Let me just make some assertions; to try to prove this to you would take, possibly, months, unless you were willing to do the research independently, which can take .... months unless you know where to look first. Just the incorrect statements to start.

  • I disagree that there's any serious and credible suggestion – other than from a tiny fringe – that there's a nuclear reaction taking place at anything significantly above what would be expected from background radiation. By this I assume you mean detection of radiation above background. Ample evidence, peer-reviewed, and peer-reviewed secondary source covering it. Most recently, and most widely covered in major media, Naturwissenschaften published a report this year by Pam Mosier-Boss of SPAWAR, detecting neutrons from CF co-deposition cells (a method developed in the 90s that produces immediate and reliable results instead of the weeks or longer required for the spotty results of the original Pons-Fleischman technique), at ten times background. Why such a low level? Because the primary reaction is one that doesn't generate neutrons, and, no, it is not simple deuterium fusion, which, if somehow it avoided generating neutrons, would generate gamma radiation that isn't detected at the appropriate levels. The neutrons are coming from secondary reactions, probably the result of hot alpha particles generated by the primary reaction. As to the alpha radiation, which also shouldn't be there, there is plenty of experimental evidence, starting in 1990 in a Chinese report -- covered by a reliable secondary source, by the way -- that there is copious alpha radiation generated by an active CF electrode. Most researchers didn't look for this at all, the big search was for neutrons.
  • AFAIK there's never been a replicable CF demonstration that's generated anything more significant than the emissions increase one would get from firing a neutron stream at a paraffin disc Plenty. Not only the above. Excess heat is also significant, widely reported. There is, in fact, more peer-reviewed source favorable to cold fusion than negative, and if we limit ourselves to peer-reviewed secondary source, there is practically none that is truly "anti-cold fusion." See, Iridescent, the original P-F effect was very fragile, more fragile than Pons and Fleischmann realized. When they ran out of the original batch of palladium, for some time they were unable to duplicate the work themselves. It took almost a decade of work to determine what conditions were favorable for the effect to appear and it was still fragile. According to a Chinese review of the field in 2007, only in the year preceding did replications reach 100% of tests.
  • the fact that there's so little serious research taking place, and in a field where blue-sky thinking is actively encouraged, speaks volumes. There is far more research that has been and is being published in this field than has been published in many other originally speculative fields that were accepted. If you can get a copy, you might look at Undead Science, by Simon, 2002. Simon is a sociologist who covered, in detail, the formation of the scientific consensus rejecting cold fusion, as well as what happened after -- which is that research continued, though under severe constraints and difficulties. Funding was cut off. The main source of labor for much academic research, graduate students, was cut off as students were warned (for some, the word would be better "threatened") that if they continued assisting, their careers -- and their doctorate -- was toast. Publication in certain major peer-reviewed journals was explicitly and openly cut off; Nature (journal), specifically, refused to publish responses to critical papers they had published, when those published papers were seriously flawed, moving way outside normal practice. Papers were rejected, often, without peer review, as pure editorial decisions. Simons -- this book is RS, academically published -- covers it. And in spite of all this, research continued. Some journals continued to publish. The most reputable journal to publish is the multidisciplinary journal Naturwissenschaften, which has published two papers this year, and I know, from an editor working on them, that they have more in the pipeline. Naturwissenschaften is rated with Scientific American in impact, but it is more technical. Einstein published in Naturwissenschaften, it's run by the Max Planck Institut; in the current mediation, the idea that this was a "life sciences" journal, which had been inserted into the article by a skeptic trying to impeach it, was thoroughly shot down.
The nadir was something like 2005; many of the researchers were getting old, retiring, dying. Since then, there is a building base of solid work, and it's starting to be realized how much of the early work was much better than it had been portrayed. One of the evidences of a nuclear reaction would be the measurement of helium, and especially if, over many tests, the helium amount measured was correlated with the excess heat measured. And that work was originally done by the mid-1990s. It was actually a bit misleading, since the energy measured, over many experiments, has been shown to be roughly 25 MeV per He-4, which is right for pure deuterium fusion that somehow converts entirely to helium without gamma rays, and so it was discounted as impossible. But there is another path: 4D -> Be-8 -> 2He-4 + 57.6 MeV, and there is a theory, based on existing quantum mechanics and quantum field theory, that explains -- as near as I can tell -- why this is a preferred pathway. It's basically molecular fusion of two deuterium molecules that form -- again, if I understand it -- a Bose-Einstein condensate under confinement at the edge of a metal lattice. The theory is notable, covered in peer-reviewed secondary source. Multiple secondary sources. Why is it not in the article? Well, it's not been easy, Iridescent. Primarily because of assumptions like yours, which are not based on sources of that quality. The rejection of cold fusion wasn't in "peer-reviewed secondary source." It was in sources of much lower quality, editorials, etc. Twenty years ago, with continued reference to it in media sources. "Negative" peer-reviewed reports, which mostly were of the nature of "We tried to replicate Fleischmann's work and couldn't," when analyzed later once it was known what conditions generate the effect, actually confirm the later analysis. Unfortunately, most of the later work, some of it of quite high quality, is in conference papers. So I can't put in the article that a Bayesian analysis of peer-reviewed publications on excess heat predicted, from the papers' descriptions of the conditions of the experiment, whether or not the experiment would discover excess heat or not. Much of the "negative" work was simply confirming that there weren't any significant numbers of neutrons, which is now known to be the case for the known low-energy nuclear reactions. The neutrons found by the SPAWAR group are from traditional "hot" fusion from the energetic alpha particles generated by the low-energy reaction. (That's their theory; they cite the Takahashi theory of Be-8 fusion as a possible explanation of the main reaction.)
Here is the bottom line, Iridescent. Wikipedia has previously banned the three most knowledgeable editors working on the cold fusion article. That would be Pcarbonn, who had worked on the article for many years, and who was banned because he was successfully framed as editing with an agenda, though, as far as I could see, he edited in accordance with guidelines and was civil, Jed Rothwell, who is widely known as an expert, though he's not a scientist, he's a writer. And, shall we say, frank when he encounters entrenched and arrogant ignorance, not necessarily suitable to be a Wikipedia editor, but he stopped editing the article in 2006 and was banned in January by JzG for Talk page "POV-pushing." And then, there was ScienceApologist, apparently quite knowledgeable about physics and who may be a particle physicist, which would presumably give him some knowledge about fusion, but it is quite clear that whatever is happening in those CF cells, it is not a known form of fusion. He was banned for a different reason.
The original P-F discovery was excess heat; they made a mistake reporting neutrons; they rather quickly retracted it, but the damage was done. They were not physicists, they were electrochemists, highly experienced at calorimetry. And their work on excess heat has essentially been confirmed, over and over. I could make a good case for presenting it as scientific fact, though a better case for it being on the cusp: evidence for it was considered "conclusive" by half the experts selected for the 2004 U.S. Department of Energy review, and, what is plain from many sources, nuclear physicists, and many physicists in general, widely reject excess heat because it's considered that fusion under those conditions is impossible. But calorimetry isn't their field, and when they tried to replicate P-F's work in 1989, they made bonehead mistakes just as P-F had made with neutron radiation. Cart before the horse. In 2004, only one-third of the experts on the 18-member panel considered the evidence "somewhat compelling" for nuclear origin of the heat. Note, however, that this would be two-thirds of the experts who accepted excess heat evidence as conclusive. Look at that panel and the results and especially at the individual reviews, and the picture is clear: this is emerging science, not fringe science. Emerging science where a majority of "scientists" -- without study of the field! -- consider it dead and pseudoscience.

I was banned a month ago from editing Cold fusion and the Talk page. My offense? Well, it wasn't actually stated! But it's obvious: I know too much, and I write about it, and I was starting to put reliably sourced information, from secondary sources, into the article, and it was being removed, with bald reverts, contrary to Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Fringe science, and there is a contingent of editors, quite active, who very much opposed that arbitration result, and who continue to oppose it.

My position is that we should follow the reliable source guidelines, purely and simply, and consensus process. *Not* that we should present some particular point of view, my own or anyone else's. But what I've seen, again and again, is weak sources allowed for rejection of cold fusion, and strong sources disallowed, based on an editorial assumption that the field is "fringe" or worse (many editors clearly believe that this is pseudoscience, even though that's been rejected by consensus.) Because the anti-fringe crowd has assembled a local majority of editors, it's often necessary to move outside the article itself to find wider consensus. That takes time, lots of time.

  • As to my block, fair enough. I'm just emphasizing that I don't hold that block against you in any way, I believe that you acted properly, given what you saw and understood. I was recently blocked by another admin, and that was different, it will be before ArbComm.
  • As to block logs, we should, first of all, consider short blocks, unless repeated over and over, practically irrelevant. And even then, it would be the behaviors that led to the blocks that would be up for consideration, a block should prove nothing except that an admin considered it appropriate, which can happen for many reasons. Your block of me for incivility should not be taken as a proof that I was uncivil, because the case was never examined by a general discussion. I did, in fact, examine it in my self-RfC, but that was only for my own advice; before I went on, I wanted to make sure that I hadn't actually violated policy.
  • Block logs can be annotated. They can also be expunged, but it's normally considered not worth the trouble, and I'd worry about it. Annotation should be done whenever a user is sufficiently exercised about a block to request broad discussion. I saw, however, an editor, who had been disruptive, request annotation and was so tenacious on a noticeboard about it that an admin apparently annotated it with something like "excessive due to newness of editor," just to shut him up. A short time later, this same editor was highly disruptive and managed to convince, with misleading reports, AN/I to ban a highly productive but young and naive editor (a 16-year old girl, apparently). So I have mixed feelings. All of this disappears as a problem with better communication process.
Sekrit discussion of something I won't mention at the top level, but it's long. Nothing to see here.
  • Gaming of proxies: actually, you've missed something big. The system doesn't change, it stays the same. Yes, canvassing, but if you actually make decisions by cogency of arguments, canvassing accomplishes nothing unless it actually solicits more cogent arguments. Wouldn't that be a good thing? If an editor represents, in some sense, a thousand editors, and another represents only himself, which one is presenting the more cogent argument? Maybe someone who is so widely trusted will turn out to be so trusted for a reason. Or maybe those are sock puppets, and nothing is accomplished with them. You've made, as is common, assumptions about how proxy information would be used. No matter how many times, when the MfD for WP:PRX was open, the proponent or I wrote that it wasn't about voting, most Delete votes were accompanied with WP:NOTAVOTE. The sock puppetry charge is quite amusing. When the editor proposing WP:PRX named me as his proxy, using the table format that had been developed, we were promptly checkusered. Iridescent, the last thing a puppet master wants to do with a proxy would be to name the master account! Or the reverse! Sure, some could create hosts of dummy accounts and name themselves, but how would the information be used? That was actually an open question, WP:PRX was intended to study what would happen if the facility existed to name a proxy, and not to propose any specific usage. But my concept is that if we want to understand the level of consensus obtained on a proposal or decision, someone who wants that information could use proxy table information, with the concept of delegable proxy, to estimate it, but tools could be developed to make the results much more sophisticated. For example, each person who participates in a discussion would be analyzed to "add" a weight according to editors who were not represented, but who have named that person, directly or indirectly, as trusted. That's a first-level estimate. To make it more sophisticated, each editor could be weighted by the edit count. Or the time since registration. Or both. Or according to any information that the analyst provides. The usage of the information is entirely up to the analyst, the present system is understood as a background.
  • The real purpose of a proxy system is for rapid processing of information on a large scale. Most of this, I expect, would happen off-wiki. Indeed, this would force us to finally face that !votes shouldn't count; if the goal is consensus, if we understand that the best decision, about content or about behavior, is the one with the widest consensus, we will stop worrying about vote counts entirely; the proxy documentation simply gives a rough estimate for editors to use to decide when it's time to move on to something else instead of beating a dead horse, on the one hand, or, on the other, believing that we must continue to argue a point when it's already accepted by nearly everyone except some very isolated editors, without trust or support, and no new arguments.
  • My observation -- I've been working on this for thirty years -- is that it normally takes at least a year of exposure to the concept for even part of it to begin to sink in. There are so many readily available, easy, common and believed arguments as to why it couldn't possibly work that the idea doesn't get consideration until it has shown great persistence. (Lack of persistence is a standard filter than most of us use to avoid having to waste time considering myriads of bogus ideas.)
  • I'm going to make an effort to present the concept at the NY meetup. It's tricky, very difficult to do in a few minutes. It's difficult to do face-to-face in a matter of hours, but usually it's possible, with reasonably intelligent people willing to think outside the box a little. There are actually a lot of people like that! There are a few people who get the concept immediately, but they are quite rare. Most respond as you did. Including very bright people. Iridescent, from my perspective, human beings are very much like each other, we are far more similar than we are different.
  • As I see it, we should be reducing the internal links within Wikipedia, by breaking an ungovernably large project into small loosely connected factions. While I dislike using the term, as it frightens the horses, the closest real-life model would probably be anarcho-syndicalism. Among the people who rapidly recognize the delegable proxy concept have been anarchists and libertarians. (The other major group of fast acceptors is among people with 12-step program experience, especially in service, where the knowledge of the AA Traditions is widespread. They get the "consensus" part of it quickly.) Every proxy forms a "natural caucus." It's like a faction, it's a group of editors who have decided to trust a particular editor, and whom that editor has decided to allow direct communication from. (The concept of proxy acceptance, as a consent to direct communication, is one that most people miss on first consideration: this is the reason why Jimbo would not allow a million people to designate him as a proxy, not directly. If he wanted to accept the indirect trust, he'd suggest to them that they contact one of his clients, someone he trusts to filter their requests and communications for him, and to only pass on what he'd truly be interested in seeing, and if it's a million, that client would, in turn, suggest a client, etc.) This creates a network of "factions." While we can imagine the exercise of power by such factions, I think we will see something quite different, if this becomes widespread. We will see it used to negotiate consensus, and communicate it and maintain it, which includes keeping it open to change without wasting time discussing the same thing over and over. To get this, you'll need to understand how information flows in such a system. By the way, delegable proxy systems are common, but, not being formalized, they don't function rapidly and efficiently. If I want to get an idea to Jimbo's ear, how do I do it? His talk page? If it's an idea that takes an hour of explanation, fat chance. But if there is a proxy table, and I have a proxy myself, I have a path up the hierarchy, someone who has trusted me enough to allow me to communicate directly -- and I picked this person! -- who then has a similar relationship with someone else, and up and down this structure, if there is enough use of it, I can find a path to Jimbo. I don't even need to do that research, I can simply try to convince my proxy it's a good idea, and that it should be passed up the hierarchy. If it gets high enough, and even without a superproxy (you can guess what that means), an idea can reach a level where it will cross over to someone with a direct path to Jimbo (up or down! -- would Jimbo name a proxy? He should! It is not a transfer of power, as such, but only of a kind of representation, an expression of trust).
  • But what if it's a Bad Idea? Well, at some point, this Bad Idea will reach a person who recognizes it as such. This person has been contacted by their client with the suggestion, and they have an agreement to communicate. (If they don't have the rapport needed for that, the relationship is unstable and it is likely to be replaced). The reason why it's a bad idea will be explained. By someone, if it's my proxy, I trust. It's quite different from having an idea that just falls flat, or which is rejected by people who dislike the very idea that it's being presented, or who won't give it the time of day. My understanding of the situation increases, and, if I can't convince a person I chose as being the most trustworthy person available to me, what chance do I have of convincing anyone else? That's not necessarily the end, I might trust this person but think that they simply were not in a position to understand the idea, but I now have a much better understanding of the dimensions of the problem. If I can convince anyone else, they can try to take the idea up the hierarchy themselves, starting with a different proxy, but if that fails, presumably this would get back to me, and I'd have to conclude that, even if I'm right, I'm too far ahead of what is possible and I should work on something else. On the other hand, if I'm capable of listening, I might realize that it actually is a Bad Idea. No harm has been done, and only a relatively small number of people, as few as one besides myself, were even exposed to the idea.
  • We have largely failed to analyze Wikipedia structure from the perspective of efficiency, and, as a result, we waste huge amounts of editor time. Because it seemed that there were endless editors available, we haven't valued the time of individual editors. But this set up a pyramid scheme, and we've been fouling our nest. The best editors, or certainly the most experienced editors, have been burning out. It could all be much, much easier. The same issues get discussed over and over on Article Talk pages; part of this is that we have paid very little attention to building backstory, documenting the reasons why an article is the way it is. It's not necessary to repeat that discussion over and over; rather, what would be done with a new editor with ideas, new or otherwise, is that the editor would be invited to review the backstory, and to extend it if the editor has new fact or argument to present. As articles mature, most ongoing work would be on the backstory, which would, with a field like cold fusion, actually turn into an extended resource. Lots of sources come up in discussion and would be useful to someone researching a topic that don't end up in the article, or that are only there for a time until replaced by the next wave of revisions. Because of a very limited view of the function of a Talk page, we don't do this. Note that this requires extensive refactoring of Talk and it requires consensus, the "backstory" would be a consensus account of the arguments and history, NPOV with the topic being Wikipedia history.
  • A proxy structure would indeed break down our process into a series of small-scale conversations, even for matters of high importance. Taking place off-wiki, in either public or private fora, these conversations would negotiate true consensus efficiently. The proxy-client relationship is a bidirectional filter. It is not that every decision made site-wide would be discussed with every editor, for a proxy might simply, at a high level, participate and make a decision, and it would only pass down the hierarchy if needed, if the proxy decided, for example, to request comment from a client or from all clients. The actual on-wiki decision-making would be visible, the arguments presented, etc. Or some discussion might be on public mailing lists with restricted right to post. Any proxy could set up such a list, and I'd expect that high-level proxies would routinely do it. Or there might be virtual "councils" set up where high-level proxies would hammer out consensus on major topics.
  • None of this would be centrally controlled, and if editors wanted to do this, nobody could stop them. This would not be Esperanza, there would be no "elected council." The only thing preventing this kind of organization is inertia. People don't believe it could work. Or, on a more sinister note, they are already organized by an off-line, undocumented equivalent. These editors, to the extent that they exist, would vigorously oppose a proxy system, and would attempt to delete any proposals for it, giving whatever argument they could think up. Have you ever wondered, Iridescent, why there was such a determined effort to actually delete the rejected proposal WP:PRX? I don't know the answer to that question, but, obviously, some nerve was touched. It was a huge flap. A total pile-on for Delete. A close by User:Kim Bruning, Keep as Rejected. And the editors who had !voted with WP:NOTAVOTE screamed that Bruning had ignored consensus. They went to DRV. Bruning closed the DRV (improperly, my opinion, but he's nothing if not bold). When they realized he wasn't an admin, having given it up in good standing, they reopened the MfD. Which sat there for a while and was closed by a new admin with Keep as Rejected, and an MfD on all the accessory files, the tables, etc., also failed. I found the whole thing amusing. I knew that Wikipedia wasn't ready, but I was a little surprised at the vehemence of the rejection. I hadn't thought that it would be seen as so threatening.
  • Will the "Randroids" allow it? Let me ask this in a different way: will we allow it, or, conversely, will we allow the "Randroids" to pretend that they have consensus? I do know that Jimbo has made some noises about something like PRX. Maybe I'll get a chance in New York to speak to him in person, maybe not. What I'm proposing is much deeper than you have imagined, Iridescent, it is not in opposition to "Randroids" or any other faction or cabal. Part of the concept was worked out and designed to work in China, because it is not an oppositional system, the goal is consensus, and therefore efficiency, not destruction of the existing order. Sure, there is a possibly subversive aspect to it, but that is not how it would function in practice. There is little value in destroying existing systems; the best anarchist thinkers understood that, it was the impatient and shallow and just plain angry that gave anarchism a bad name. You haven't thought the matter all the way through, and, as I've said, it can take years to do that.
  • --Abd (talk) 02:38, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

Arbitrary break—scrolling through this edit window is making my fingers hurt

  • On CF, I think we'll have to disagree. Probably best not to talk about it, given that it's now in front of Arbcom. Or at any rate, in front of whatever's left of Arbcom by the time the dust settles from this case-study in what happens when people try to impose governance systems from the top-down without consultation.
  • As previously said, I think short blocks should be wiped from the block logs after a certain time (not immediately, as sometimes a series of short blocks can be an indicator or an underlying serious problem). It's ridiculous that someone like Vintagekits is still stigmatised because of minor squabbles he got in two years ago.
  • As I understand it, only the oversighters can annotate block logs. The only way for a "vanilla" admin to annotate a block log is to add another entry (e.g., by blocking for 1 second) and using the annotation as the block reason – this will get the entry on there, but has a side-effect of making the block log look longer than it actually is to those who don't read every entry. Because changing the MediaWiki software to amend this would disrupt every website using it, I can understand why they don't implement this particular fix.
  • Re the 16 year old, if you mean WW she is still about from time to time – she was even on the main page a couple of weeks ago.
  • I still think the proxy model is unsuitable for Wikipedia, and I doubt you'll convince me otherwise. With 10,069,032 registered accounts, of which only around 10,000 are active at any given time, it's far too easy to build up unbeatable blocks of semi-active editors. Additionally, we don't have anything akin to parties and people strongly agreeing on one area can vehemently disagree in another – check out the strange bedfellows in the various columns at RFC/ACPD, for example. Besides, it would horribly skew discussions ("don't bother disagreeing with me, I've got 10,000 voters behind me").
    As I understand it, you're proposing something similar to the block votes of shareholders at a corporate meeting, but using the benefits of instantaneous communication technology to allow rapid shifts of individuals between voting blocs. I really can't see how that could translate to the uneasy balance of power triumvirate of content-writers, vandal-fighters and policy-wonks that currently keeps Wikipedia loosely on course. Straight OMOV voting or voting based on editcounts would effectively turn control of the project over to the automated and semi-automated editors and possibly spark an exodus to Citizendium by the content creators. Giving enhanced voting rights to content writers and bot creators, however, would set off a firestorm of complaints from everyone else, as well as interminable discussion about how votes should be weighted. The advantage of "cellularising" the project would be that these issues wouldn't arise, as it would create a simple pyramid structure in which each cell is equal, not each member.
    Regardless, this is all castles-in-the-sky, since as we've seen in the last 24 hours the community won't take a governance structure imposed from the top, and the grassroots won't agree on such a radical change from below. – iridescent 18:26, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

TPS - need commons image help please?

I don't do images, and I definitely don't do commons. Can someone help. After playing whack-a-mole w Lewishnl (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) and his socks here, he helpfully mentioned Commons as a source for why this article shouild be created. It's a non-notable now salted article for a 14 year old "upcoming chef" who's working on his first book. Yes, there are ghits for the name, none of them other than what Lewish has added are about the chef. The commons stuff is here and I don't know what, if anything, needs to be done to deal with it there. Can anyone help? I'm watching here. Thanks all! StarM 15:38, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

If the Commons ones are just generic pictures of food (they seem to be), then may as well leave them unless there's a copyright concern. Someone might well have a legitimate use for pictures of egg salads, roast lamb etc. – iridescent 15:42, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
And the licensing over at Commons looks legitimate, so it should be fine. –Juliancolton | Talk 15:52, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Got it, thanks both. The licensing question was the main concern I had. Glad it's all good. StarM 16:53, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Well put

I'm avoiding posting on RFA talk as much as possible, so I'll say my "well put" comment here instead, for this. This whole thing is becoming incredibly tiresome. Luckily I unwatched every RFA related page, so I don't have to put up with this sort of thing polluting my watchlist, but I had the unfortunate idea of glancing at RFA talk today and noticed that. Majorly talk 17:19, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

No argument there from me. AGF and all that, but this user seems to have a unique ability to bring stupid into every possible venue. – iridescent 17:25, 14 July 2009 (UTC)


I have closed the RfC you co-proposed. Please see Wikipedia_talk:Arbitration_Role_of_Jimmy_Wales_in_the_English_Wikipedia#Notes and the subsequent section. I am sorry to say that I did not find consensus for the proposals. Please review my closure and let me know if you think I have made any errors, either in interpretation or administration. --Dweller (talk) 17:43, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

I think you got it about right; namely, the wording of the original made it look like an attack on Jimmy Wales rather than an attack on problems in the selection mechanism. It would be interesting to see what the result of the same question, but headed "Proposal to counteract systemic bias in Arbcom selection mechanisms" or "Democratically elected Arbcom" would be. Since the current furore over the creation of the Arbcom Congress of People's Deputies is draining the life out of anyone who touches it, I don't think any meaningful conclusions can be drawn in the current climate, so closure was definitely the right thing to do. – iridescent 17:50, 14 July 2009 (UTC)


I wasn't blanking, I was edit-conflicted with you as I was completing the process of fixing a cut-n-paste move. I do know better than that, you know. Regards, BencherliteTalk 22:36, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

No problem – thought you might have deliberately blanked it (or merge the histories and forgot to revert afterwards, which a surprising number of people do) – iridescent 22:39, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
I was treading carefully, with Wikipedia:How to fix cut-and-paste moves open in one tab and WP:AEE open in another, as I don't fix cut-n-pastes often to do it without the "cheat sheet" in front of me! BencherliteTalk 22:42, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
No problem. Anyone who says they fully understand Wikipedia:How to fix cut-and-paste moves is probably lying. Even by the usual lamentable standards of Wikipedia help pages (which I don't think anyone would claim are exactly one of our highlights) that page is gibberish. – iridescent 22:44, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

Sysop Flag

Dear Iridescent i have removed your sysop flag based on your own will --Mardetanha talk 20:56, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Iridrescent's dead? My God! Do I get anything from the will? --Malleus Fatuorum 20:59, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
(ec) Thanks for being so prompt. (To the circling vultures, no, there's no interesting back-story here). – iridescent 20:59, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Bugger, you're still alive. No legacy for me then. --Malleus Fatuorum 21:01, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Sorry to see you go, and that was quite an interesting message. "Based on your will". Enigmamsg 03:46, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
Remember, desysopping is handled at meta (that is, worldwide) level, not on en-wiki – which is as it should be, to stop local politics spilling across – and Mardetanha is from Iranian Wikipedia. I'd be a lot less understandable in Farsi than he is in English. – iridescent 18:48, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
If you believe it or not, I'm sorry to see that. I hope you'll be back (as a sysop) at some point in the future. Best, — Aitias // discussion 21:05, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Possibly back at some point depending how things go. This isn't by any means a resignation from Wikipedia, which I still maintain is a project with genuine and unique potential (see above sermon discussion), but my opinion of the current admin corps is not high and getting lower by the hour. Besides, I always said that admins should have an enforced desysopping periodically to let them see things from the other side, and it would be hypocritical of me not to follow it myself. (Thanks for adding the rollback flag, BTW; unlike Malleus, I do think it can be quite handy and don't have an issue with the way it's handed out, provided it's not used as some kind of bargaining chip.) – iridescent 21:30, 12 July 2009 (UTC)
Welcome to the Dark Side Iridescent. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:10, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Less tab clutter, for the win. :-) --MZMcBride (talk) 21:07, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Definitely agree on that. Just discovered I have a "highlight redirects on this page" tab I never knew existed, that had previously been hiding off the edge of the page. – iridescent 21:10, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

I'd like to point out that the standard decreases because of resignations just as much as new admins. I'm not willing to commit to a percentile but I assume that one side is higher than the other (/POV). So I can't say I'm pleased you went -sysop but I can understand your reasoning which follows above. Just don't stay away too long. Regards. :) Syn 22:56, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

Frankly, of the 900 or so active admins I could count the ones I currently trust without needing to use more than two hands, and I see no reason why I should assist the current management setup, which has been hijacked almost totally by the Defenders of the Wiki, the Jimmilluminati and the Civility Police. When I joined the admins two years ago, they were by and large a group of people out to help with furthering the project, not a mob of semi-coherent thugs out to settle their own petty grudges. This is no longer the case. – iridescent 00:46, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I've had a similar sense - a lot of the people here that I used to admire and respect have left, or turned into pale, irascible shadows of their former selves. And while it has gotten much harder to pass RfA, the quality of new admins has simultaneously and paradoxically declined. The people I'd like to put forward at RfA are reluctant, because they're sensible and they see what's involved - and I can't bring myself to push too hard, because the reality is that anyone who's strayed too far from the RfA formula you posted above will have a tough time.

But then I wonder if I'm the one who's changed - maybe giants never walked the Earth, the people I admired were always irascible, and the majority of RfA's were always clusterfucks. I don't want to overromanticize the past, since abuses and inept admins have ever been with us. In fact, I sometimes think that the power of roving cliques of bullies is objectively less today than it was 2 years ago. I've thought about giving up the bit myself - I've taken virtually no administrative actions for some time now - but I just can't get by without seeing deleted revisions anymore. It's too hard to figure out what's actually going on around here. Anyhow, I've been coopted into the Jimmilluminati, so what do I know. :) MastCell Talk 20:16, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

OK, that warrants a sensible answer. I don't think there was ever a Golden Age – these articles were all Featured Articles in 2004; the policy pages were dominated by interminable infighting; "The Cabal" was a real and present threat who routinely bullied people off the project, as opposed to a figure of speech thrown around in debates; we had hopelessly bad standards on sourcing, leading to the multiple fiascos culminating in Siegenthaler, and the poor reputation which dogs us to this day.
That said, I do think the admins up to 2007–early 2008 genuinely believed they were part of something special and helping to build something new, and saw adminship as a tool that would help them help others, not as a sheriff's badge. Far too many of the current crop are paint-by-numbers policy drones, who will happily quote the exact wordings of policy pages as if they were holy writ, but completely misunderstand the nuances of, intentions of, and common-sense exemptions to the policies. In 2007, situations like the current self-appointed Civility Police didn't arise; if someone was causing a problem, the admin intervention would either be "both of you, knock it off" or "you're clearly in the wrong, stop now or get blocked".
The relative stability in the number of active admins – which has hovered fairly constantly between 900-1000 – masks the fact that we now have far too many gamers who don't really understand what we're trying to do here, and far far far too many people who see themselves as petty dictators of whichever corner of Wikipedia they've chosen to inhabit. Coupled with the exodus of content-writers (those who talk about Wikipedia entering the maintenance phase overstate the situation, but there's a kernel of truth), and the project's management is getting far more unstable than it ever was in the past – we currently have an article-to-admin ratio of 3300:1, which is impossible to keep a lid on, and many of those admins wouldn't know a bad mainspace edit if it bit them on the backside, so the actual situation is even more unsustainable. – iridescent 20:36, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, I agree with most or all of that. It does seem to me that the infamous "civility block" is a relatively recent invention, though I have no hard data to back that perception. Part of it is that admins have less maneuvering room now. Creative solutions and actual resolution of disputes are basically lost arts - partly because they're obviously not valued at RfA, and partly because they are actively discouraged in favor of the idea that admins need to robotically "enforce" policies like civility. What in the past used to be viewed as administrative discretion or common sense is more likely, today, to be seen as administrative caprice, abuse, partiality, or "selective" (as opposed to robotic) enforcement of policy. Also, a big culprit was the temporary ArbCom mania for "civility parole", which I personally think was one of the 2 or 3 most destructive things ever dreamt up on Wikipedia.

I don't want to open the "ageism" can of worms, but my sense is that the overall level of maturity among admins has declined. I could name some fairly prominent figures and trends that I believe have played major roles in the decline of standards at RfA, but that wouldn't be very useful, would it? And I'm not talking about specific "underage" admins; I mean that the overall trend has been toward people who view adminship as leveling up, as a matter of checking the boxes you outlined a few threads above. I can tell at a glance that, no matter what they say, most candidates at RfA view adminship as a trophy and a merit badge, not as a set of useful tools or as a position of increased responsibility. The people who are mature enough to realize that adminship isn't a trophy tend to quickly make the logical leap that it's not worth putting oneself through RfA in its current form.

I've actually considered whether it would be feasible to transfer my admin bit to someone whom I think would be an exceptional admin, but who would have difficulty passing RfA in its current febrile state. I don't really use the bit much anymore. If I really care about an issue, I tend to "involve" myself as an editor, and I'm too tired and cynical about this place to take on many altruistic administrative tasks like WP:SPI or WP:RFPP. So someone else may as well get some use out of it, right? MastCell Talk 21:04, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

It's a bloody good job that I don't have that admin bit, because I'd block anyone and everyone who imposes a civility block. That has got to be one of the stupidest and most destructive developments during my time here anyway. --Malleus Fatuorum 21:27, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
OK, since you said that, I was trying to remember how I voted at your RfA. Turns out I said this. Good God, that was obnoxious of me. I can't believe I opposed on the basis that I knew what was good for you better than you yourself did. Although you were quite civil in response. :) Anyway, that's one of those votes I'd probably switch if I had it to do over, for what it's worth. MastCell Talk 21:54, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I forgive you MastCell. My only regret with that RfA is that I didn't oppose myself, as I had half a mind to do. :-) --Malleus Fatuorum 22:08, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Actually, looking through that trainwreck again I'm surprised at some of those who opposed. Bastards! :lol: --Malleus Fatuorum 22:15, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

This is a shame as it's only the decent admins who do ethical things like this. The non-ethical shitehawks just hang around like a cheesy fart with no intention of removing their hard bribed for fought for admin bit. I'm afraid the decent admin pool has been greatly diluted with your withdrawal. It's a sad day :( --WebHamster 20:15, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

You may say that, I couldn't possibly comment. There will be plenty who disagree with you, though. – iridescent 20:38, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
I'm hoping you're just taking that break you say that all administrators should take, and just want to remind yourself what it's like here in the trenches. --Malleus Fatuorum 21:17, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Oh. Am I a Jimmilluminatus? Cool nomenclature, but not sure I'm pleased to be painted that way. Perhaps I deserve it. Anyway, any time you want your bit back, drop me a line and I'd be delighted to whack it back on ya. --Dweller (talk) 21:52, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

"Meh" is the only rational answer to that. What's going to be interesting is just how many of the shrillest "nothing wrong with a self-selecting group" voices will be equally shrill in arguing for deletion here. Anyone who says the whole argument isn't getting personalised is deluding themselves. I'm having no further public opinion on it; whether or not either goes ahead, the whole argument is getting ridiculous. – iridescent 21:56, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
I find the hypocrisy so evident in that MfD to be quite startling. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:24, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
Hypocrisy? On Wikipedia? Surely you jest! – iridescent 22:33, 15 July 2009 (UTC)
(adding) User:Joopercoopers has just shot up in my estimation, though, for being willing to put his name to both proposals, instead of the "unelected group good, elected group bad" mantra that seems to be par for the course. – iridescent 22:38, 15 July 2009 (UTC)

I have an idea for an article. I guess they call it a stub..How do I proceed?

Here is the exact stub..

"Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., CNS, is a board-certified nutritionist and the author of seven books on health and nutrition, including The 150 Most Effective Ways to Boost Your Energy and The 150 Healthiest Foods on Earth. "

qoted from Forbs.

The heading of the article/stub would be "Johnny Bowden"

This is simple, to the point, and accrate. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Stuartpiles (talkcontribs) 13:18, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

I am I am learning the correct form and such.. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Stuartpiles (talkcontribs) 13:41, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Thank your for your time and consideration..

Stuartpiles..7/16/09 —Preceding unsigned comment added by Stuartpiles (talkcontribs) 13:37, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

It's very unlikely that an article on this subject would be accepted by Wikipedia, unless you can demonstrate that he meets Wikipedia's quite strict standards of notability. (He may meet the notability requirements if his books were successful – see WP:AUTHOR for the exact requirements – but the onus is on the authors of the article to demonstrate that he meets the criteria.) Contrary to popular exception, Wikipedia isn't a directory, and does have quite strict criteria, even if they aren't always obvious. I'd suggest you'd be better placed writing the article at MyWikiBiz – this runs on the same software as Wikipedia so the "look and feel" is the same, but has a policy of not deleting any material unless it's libellous, so you don't have to worry about your article being deleted as advertising. Hope that helps. – iridescent 18:52, 16 July 2009 (UTC)


Thanks for all your support in recent months, I'm glad that we were able so overcome disagreement in the distant past. I have decided to leave Wikipedia and I won't be returning. — Please comment R2 15:16, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Who's going to look after the Jackson articles now? :-( --Malleus Fatuorum 15:58, 16 July 2009 (UTC)
If this is a reaction to Slim, then reconsider. Saying this will probably get me banned for life from every single WP:BADSITE, but while she can be overbearing at times, most of the time she genuinely does mean well and will generally listen to reasoned arguments as to why whatever she's doing shouldn't be done. – iridescent 18:54, 16 July 2009 (UTC)

Thank you for your integrity

Please accept my apologies, I had your intentions confused with the intentions of others. Although I misjudged at first, I know your intentions were sincere. Rest assured, now that the dust will settle, I will examine your suggestions and will incorporate them into my learning. I will also revisit the issues you have raised and address them. Best of luck to you, and regards, Dave (talk) 03:29, 11 July 2009 (UTC)

Sorry that all got so noisy. You may not have noticed in all the fuss, but I withdrew my opposition, as it was based on a single issue which I don't think is going to come up again. What I would say is, don't treat Ottava and Peter as trolls or troublemakers; their opposition was based on a genuine concern, which rather got buried in all the shouting. – iridescent 16:11, 11 July 2009 (UTC)
[16] Ottava Rima (talk) 23:24, 13 July 2009 (UTC)
Seriously, leave it. He's passed, and either he screws up, in which case I'll be first in a long line at the inevitable RFC, or he doesn't in which case no problem. I assume this shows my general opinion of the quality of the Wikipedia admin corps at the moment more than any words can, but there's no point attacking a symptom when the illness hasn't been cured. – iridescent 00:30, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
The link points out where I refused to participate in an action that would have done him and Dan a lot of harm and to congratulate him to adminship. I really didn't have to. However, he felt that it was best to thank me by attacking me and making certain that he thinks that everything I said was crap. There are many options I have besides the above - ban proposals (from Wiki, or just from FAC/GAN) for over a year worth of inserting OR and the rest into dozens of articles along with other things. Taunting me only shows that he really doesn't have respect for others, which is highly unfortunate. Any good faith that I had was definitely drained in that little bit of nastiness from him. Ottava Rima (talk) 00:40, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Again, you don't have to convince me – but seriously, leave it. Given the circumstances, he's going to be the most-watched new admin since FlyingToaster; give him the benefit of the doubt. Just leave each other alone; either he's not up to the job in which case he'll demonstrate it soon enough, or he'll demonstrate that he can do it (see the reasoning for my striking of my oppose) in which case, no problem. Either way, there's no point causing a scene until there's a problem. (If we desysopped everyone who'd got in an argument with you at some point, we'd have about three admins left; the fact that someone doesn't agree with you doesn't necessarily mean they're evil.) – iridescent 00:51, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Bah, Iridescent, what I said is that I -am- giving him the benefit of the doubt and he is biting me for it. :P Ottava Rima (talk) 00:54, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
You've been bitten before Ottava, and you'll no doubt get bitten again. This promotion was clearly a disgrace, and if Dave whatever had the slightest shred of integrity then he would have refused the admin bit. But nothing new, just another administrator without the slightest shred of integrity. --Malleus Fatuorum 01:01, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
Only just noticed this. Malleus, I think you're being unfair here; RFA may be a messed-up process, but one can't blame someone for accepting the outcome of the process. Judge him by his actions, not by the actions of people over whom he has no control – as per my comment on the RFA, he surely now appreciates the two concerns raised (accurate sourcing and participation in deletion debates), and will be extra-careful in these areas. I'm sure there will be enough people watching for mistakes that he'll tread carefully; judge him by his actions now, not by the prior concerns which are now water under the bridge. – iridescent 16:28, 20 July 2009 (UTC)
You're probably right. I'm only judging by what I would have done, not what I expect anyone else to do. --Malleus Fatuorum 22:16, 20 July 2009 (UTC)