User talk:Jlotheartist87

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Walking horses[edit]

Hi Jlo, a couple of comments to help you along.

  1. First off, for a photo to be acceptable for wikipedia and for wikimedia commons, it has to be FREE. In other words, at least licensed as a cc-GDFL "copyleft" image (in other words, people have to admit you took it, but you give up all rights to make money off of it) or public domain. And you have to say so explicitly on the upload. You might want to talk to User:Ealdgyth, who is also a professional photographer and can explain all this. For example, one of her images is the lead for Arabian horse, you will notice on close examination that it's a "cull" shot -- the horse is wearing splint boots! Look at how she licensed that image, it is one way to do it properly. Basically, no advertising is allowed on wikipedia, and almost all images have to be free to be used and redistributed on mirror sites without asking permission or any other restriction. (There are a few "fair use" exceptions, but not many) All you can protect is the fact that you took the image so no one else can claim its theirs!
  2. Second, horse head shots are generally a waste of time, at least more than one or two, and especially when there are other things (like people) that distract from the point of the image. Images should illustrate the text, not be a gallery. For example, the western horse image you had in there isn't all that helpful in an article on TWH's, but it WOULD be excellent as an example of a one-ear curb western bridle in, say, curb bit or bridle or western riding. For another example, the equitation shot you added I hope can stay, because the horse has full shoes with pads, is performing nicely, and thus is illustrative of the more formal showing (and shoeing) style of the TWH. (in fact, if it DOES stay, the rider has beautiful form and I'd like to see it added to Saddle seat too!). I tossed in the ribbons-in-the-mane photo because that is a unique grooming style for the TWH and Saddlebred world, not seen in other breeds for the most part. (The western horse's grooming looks a lot like any other breed's western horse grooming, at least the other action breeds)
  3. In a perfect world, we like to lead a horse breed article with a traditional conformation shot of a GOOD example of the breed, ideally facing left ("into the picture") as seen in Arabian horse, Finnhorse, or Hackney horse (though the Hackney is facing the "wrong" way and his feet aren't entirely in the image, but otherwise, he's gorgeous!). Barring that, a decent action shot that illustrates basic breed characteristics is second best. (For example, Thoroughbred, Icelandic horse or Appaloosa) It would be nice to improve that lead TWH image, but only with an overall better full body shot. I saw one TWH conformation shot on commons, (not yours) but the horse in question was standing so weird and upright on the front, he looked like he had navicular or something (sigh).
  4. Last but not least, no links to sites like WHOA that are mostly advertising. Breed registry sites are fine, even if they have a little bit of advertising, as are various sites that were used as sources for the article. And also, related to this, the TWH article is particularly controversial and has an ongoing problem with people who want to remove all the material on soring, which is not acceptable. Wikipedia requires a neutral point of view, which means ALL sides of an issue are aired, not just the promotional side. In similar vein, we have articles that mention HYPP in Quarter Horses, Lethal white syndrome in Paints, blindness in Appaloosas, and the six genetic diseases found in Arabians. (There is precedent in the dog breed articles, which also discuss disposition and diseases of dogs).

Hope this all helps you out. If you want, use the talk page of the article to make suggestions and watch how those of us with more experience editing do the changes. The toughest learning curve is probably figuring out how to properly upload images, and the second is learning where all the articles you want to wikilink are hiding! Good luck! Montanabw(talk) 23:20, 2 February 2010 (UTC)

Next questions[edit]

Hi Jlo, Some basic thoughts. Updating things like the term "big lick" work by updating the history section to say something about how the term was coined in the 70's (or whatever), and then in the rest of the article, use formal or newer terms for the fully-shod events (as opposed to the flat shod folks). This is an area that does need some updating. Your input will be very helpful to us!!!

The article probably can have a little more in the characteristics section on the disposition of the breed and its reputation for gentleness and overall soundness. It can be overdone (EVERYONE wants their special breed to be the world's favorite pocket pony, sigh...), but staying within the official published breed standard from the registry usually works, as long as it isn't from the advertising page. (On the other hand, a few months back we had to keep tossing stuff out of the Peruvian Paso article claiming they were the smoothest gaited horse breed in the world...sigh. Where's a good double-blind scientific study when you need one?). For example, both WHOA and the Arabian Horse Association have stuff on their home page about how spending time with each respective breed is "the best part of your day." (LOL!!)

For editing, first, you may want to look at the general guidelines on the Horse Breeds task force page for ideas. (especially the "what to avoid" section) For example, in the TWH article, the soring section MUST address the controversy, while it may need to have a few updates per recent rules changes and greater enforcement activities, the problem IS still a real one and will be handled as such. People have to just face negative publicity if it is accurate negative publicity; There is a whole section in WP Guidelines about handling controversial issues, and the general rule is footnote, footnote, footnote! (There may need to be more citations added to the soring section) For example, this article, though critical of the industry, is from a newspaper, which is considered a verifiable source. See WP:V. Now, people who disagree with the article may have press releases that explain the other side, and they too can be added and properly footnoted. (I call this the "while one side says this, the other side says that" approach! LOL!)

It is pretty typical for various breed organizations to be upset if negative material appears in a wiki article, for example, we just finished a minor edit war over our adding information about genetic diseases to the Akhal teke article. We have seen similar issues on wiki with some QH people ticked off that we mention HYPP, the mini people don't like to discuss dwarfism, and the Appy people absolutely are in total denial about the blindness issues in their breed. One of our WP editors who is very knowledgeable about genetics pretty much has flat-out busted the propaganda of the APHA with their rather ingenuous "not all overo horses have Lethal White" claim. (The real answer being guess what, the frame overo gene IS directly associated with LWS, but sabino and splash white are not.) We also address cruelty issues in other breeds or disciplines, such as rollkur and the "spur stop" in western pleasure. I recently added material on tail-numbing to the article tail (horse).

To take an example of how really controversial animal cruelty issues are handled in other wiki articles, take a look at how we did rodeo, where I have been the poor soul caught in the middle between industry apologists and the PETA crowd for about three years trying to present both sides in a fair light. Given that both sides are usually ticked off at me (!), it must be pretty close to balanced!  ;-)

On the other hand, we DO try to be careful to dump unfounded negative claims. People occasionally feel the need to slam various breeds in ways that simply describe undesirable characteristics of any breed (i.e. TBs are vicious, Arabs are crazy, obscure breeds have bad legs, etc...) and that stuff is tossed immediately. We have the opposite problem on other breed pages where people (I think mostly 10 year old girls) want to claim their favorite breed is practically sentient, a horse Lassie that is faster than a speeding bullet and can jump tall buildings in a single bound! (Check out the edit history of Friesian horse, sigh)

As for WHOA, it's mostly a promotional site, but some of the internal links to breed information may be useful as footnotes if there is not a better source. In the external links section, we try to keep the laundry list down to things that are either: a) the official breed registry (we have a link to TWHBEA); b) the official rules (like USEF for breeds that are affiliated with USEF); c) Have copyrighted material we can't add to wiki; d) a site with a lot of good material that we haven't had time to add to the article (International Museum of the Horse being an example); or e) The most respected or representative major factions. For example, we have an external link to NWBA, but not to FOSH, And TWHBEA but not NHSA (or are they defunct now, anyway?) -- but groups like NHSA and FOSH may be suitable for footnoted citations on the respective organization's position on soring, training, breed controversies and such. What is generally avoided are sites that are primarily advertising, chat boards, or have an obvious axe to grind. For example, we routinely toss links in the QH article to the "Halter Horse Association" that formed with horses now ineligible for AQHA registration due to HYPP, per wikipedia's WP:FRINGE policy).

This was a long answer, but I hope it helps! Montanabw(talk) 21:09, 3 February 2010 (UTC)

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