Wikipedia:Help desk/Archives/2007 December 26

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December 26[edit]

Why have I been bloccked indefinitely?[edit]

Dear Sir/madam,

I am a new user to Wikipedia and wanted to edit a page on a subject I know about. However, when I clicked 'edit' a message informed me that I have been banned indefinitely for unacceptable behaviour.

But I have only just arrived - how can I have committed the unspecified offences that have led me to being banned indefinitely even before i have done any activity whatsoever?

Whom do I need to contact to have this unfair block lifted?

Thank you.

KGH —Preceding unsigned comment added by Gat0wer (talkcontribs) 00:17, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

You should be able to contact the Admin who blocked you and ask him/her why you were blocked and request the ban be lifted. Dunfermline Scholar (talk) 00:21, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
It is likely that your IP address is shared, and was blocked, taking you with it. To check this, sign out of your account, and go to your talk page (type Special:Mytalk in the search bar on the left hand side of your screen). Your IP address should be prominently displayed under the Talk page header. Then, make a note of your IP, go to [1], and search for just your IP, without the 'User:' prefix. Master of Puppets Care to share? 00:28, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
However, since you were able to edit this page that means you are not blocked; it is possible that you are on a dynamic IP, or one that changes every time your router connects. It is possible that you were connected to a banned IP, and that was remedied because you were able to post here. Master of Puppets Care to share? 00:38, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Articles by age[edit]

Is there a special page or category that lists articles by the date of their creation? -- Mentifisto 03:59, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

You could try Recent Changes and look through there to find the article. What exactly are you looking for? ~ Bella Swan 04:33, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
Check out Special:New pages ( Special:New pages )- all the new pages are listed in this log. Cheers- CattleGirl talk 06:32, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
RC is rather impractical since edits are made constantly... I'm looking for something (could have been manually edited too) that has a list of all articles beginning with the first one made etc...
New pages are impractical too... they could be useful though if only they had that 'earliest' link articles have. -- Mentifisto 13:47, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
Special:Ancientpages starts in 2004, but it has some links you might follow. --Teratornis (talk) 23:51, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Text alignment[edit]

How can I make the text at List of United States business school rankings align left for the first three columns?--TonyTheTiger (t/c/bio/WP:CHICAGO/WP:LOTD) 06:48, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Got it. You can have a look at the diff for what I did :) Cheers- CattleGirl talk 06:57, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
Unless you knew that and wanted the numbers to remain aligned right?
I have absolutely no idea :S. CattleGirl talk 06:58, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
I don't know a way to align a whole column in one place, but cells can be aligned one at a time: [2]. PrimeHunter (talk) 13:48, 26 December 2007 (UTC)


Hi, I have seen some users highlight text with a coloured background before and I would like to know how to do this. Thank you! --WPholic (talk) 07:43, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

The code is <*font*style="BACKGROUND-COLOR:yellow*">YOUR TEXT HERE<*/font> (take out the asterisks). However, I recommend that you don't use this on Wikipedia- or if you do, only use it in a template or a table, or perhaps your userpage (see more at Wikipedia:Colours). Cheers- CattleGirl talk 08:13, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
Yellow highlightihng: <font style="BACKGROUND-COLOR:yellow">YOUR TEXT HERE</font> produces YOUR TEXT HERE.
Black border: <font style="BORDER:2px solid black">YOUR TEXT HERE</font> produces YOUR TEXT HERE. (Don't use the nowiki tags.) --Coppertwig (talk) 15:42, 26 December 2007 (UTC)


This article section strikes me as something plagiarized. I have asked this question in the past and the Orange fellow has helped me and told me what to tag it with, but I don't remember what it was. Can someone give this a once-over? It looks like something taken from a UNICEF site.--EndlessDan 14:28, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

I took a look on WP:TM, the index for template messages, which took me to WP:TMAIN#Copyright violations, yielding {{copypaste}}. Hope that helps. Confusing Manifestation(Say hi!) 14:35, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
The section was started in [3] and appears to have been written by the editor Asilwal (probably for another purpose originally). It may be OR but doesn't look like a copyvio. PrimeHunter (talk) 14:42, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

how to remove images used for spam[edit]

hi, i just saw this image being used in this article here to spam that action has been reverted, but now i was wondering how one could delete an image like that (which is only used to spam). i thought of the orfud tag/template, but since it's not a nonfree image i don't think i'm allowed to use that.. any suggestions please? i tried to do a little research myself but couldn't figure it out. thanks :) -Twsl (talk) 14:55, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Apparently the image is at Wikimedia Commons, as most images displayed here on Wikipedia are. You can register and log in to Commons, and see commons:Commons:Deletion guidelines for instructions how to ask to have images deleted if they fit various deletion criteria. --Coppertwig (talk) 15:28, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Removing Subpages and userpage, talkpage.[edit]

Could all reference of SKYNET X7000 be erased, the account will no-longer be in use as i'm closing the account down, all scripts from SKYNET's monobook has been removed, due to closer further responses to this message or to the talk page will not be made, thank you. SKYNET X7000 (talk) 15:28, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

I understand you won't be replying here, but just in case you are watching:
  • you can request subpages be deleted by adding {{db-author}} to them if you have created them and are the only author. Your userpage may come under this heading as well; however, it is less likely that your talkpage will be deleted under these criteria.
  • If you are leaving the project permanently, you may be able to exercise the right to vanish, depending on circumstances; more information is available at the page.
  • If you are just moving to a new username, as long as you don't reference the old name from the new one, and don't do anything that would bring you under unusual scrutiny (eg. vandalism), there wouldn't be any way to connect the two. As far as I know, there is no way to technically close an account.

Have a nice day, whatever you decide to do! --Kateshortforbob 17:49, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Userpages and pages in your userspace can almost always be deleted by adding {{db-author}} to the very top of the page in question. Talk pages typically cannot be deleted, unless you are leaving the project permanently or are blocked indefinitely and your talk page is tagged as such. Mr Senseless (talk) 20:41, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Uno Spin card game rules[edit]

We bought Uno Spin for Christmas, and there were no directions. The box said to go to to "View and print instruction manuals." However, none are available for Uno Spin. A search showed others have had the same experience. One person posted some instructions in a review they did of the game.

Since Uno has directions, as does Uno Attack, directions for Uno Spin seems appropriate. However, that article has been deleted, and I cannot find the reference in the log to understand why it was deleted. Please help me find that entry, or just explain it to me so I do not feel obliged to share this seemingly relevant information to others who are searching for it as I was.

Larrydkuch (talk) 16:17, 26 December 2007 (UTC)larrydkuch

The entire content of UNO Spin was:
"UNO Spin is a card game similar to the original UNO card game but it incorporates a spin wheel. When a spin card is played someone must spin the wheel, forcing themselves or opponents to pick up, discard or exchange cards."
It was nominated for speedy deletion as no context: Wikipedia:CSD#A1. The deleting administrator did not explicitly say whether that was the reason for actually deleting it. Note also that Wikipedia is not a game guide.PrimeHunter (talk) 16:34, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

download link in article[edit]

I've never edited an article before so It seemed best to ask about it here.

The Problem: In the article ISO_image ISO image there is a link to a utility program. "Virtual CD-ROM panel ". When I clicked this link it downloaded the file without the normal questions about where to put it. Eventhough this link seems to be correct as put on Microsoft it is too easy to change the link to a trojen.

The Questions:

How should I fix it?

1. Just remove the link because it is an opening for trojen dissemination. 2. Place a reference to a download site that explains what this file is (the majorgeek article is better than microsoft page) 3. Discuss the issue using the discussion page. (Would this be best done in addition to the fix, prior to the fix or not even helpfull since it is a fix of a security issue?)

Other Questions:

The discussion of this article reveals that it isn't up to wikipedia standards in other ways. Which leads me to some other questions, as I think about editing articles for the benifit of all.

What is the process to remove an article that is a clear breach of security. (I think that this one can be fixed so this question isn't specific to this article but rather a general question about what to do when I see problems on wiki articles.) Where should I look to find the policys for linking to files? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:37, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Based on your comment, I edited the article to remove the link. Some guidance on links is here: Wikipedia:Manual of Style (links). You're welcome to edit the article to improve it. For deleting articles, see Wikipedia:Deletion policy. --Coppertwig (talk) 17:31, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
I was asked normally whether I wanted to download the file in Internet Explorer 7.0 on Windows Vista. If you were not asked (are you sure?) then it sounds like a browser issue. As far as Wikipedia goes, it was a normally formatted named external link with the code [ Microsoft Virtual CD-ROM panel]. I don't know whether some Microsoft browsers will skip asking the user when downloading from PrimeHunter (talk) 18:44, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
I don't think a link with the function of downloading a file is appropriate as a Wikipedia external link. Instead, it should at most link to a page at the other website which then links to the download link. Even that doesn't sound to me like the kind of link encouraged by WP:EL. Besides, WP:EL says typically you don't have external links in the body of the article. And if it is somehow justified to have a link to a download, then the Wikipedia article should make it clear that that's what the link is. --Coppertwig (talk) 19:28, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
I agree the link was inappropriate, especially in the article body and with no information that it was the actual program file. I was just wondering why the poster said it downloaded without warning and apparently thought it could be changed to a trojan that automatically downloaded. I see no reason for this. PrimeHunter (talk) 20:12, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

University of Nalanda[edit]

Hi thank to every body how play a vital role to grow up this site. I give best regards to all of the members, readers, writers and the promation boday who gives their donate to support this site.

i am PAMAL ARYA, student of Nalanda university and i see most of Indians wants to suffer the Hindi site , which offers article in Hindi.

I introduce my self that i am the cheif of biolabs, That are reserching in the field of Biology( gene theraphy, enviroment and Bio-Medicine), so have a support in the form of donation we wants to give you article / content in Hindi version. Say me How can we send ?

wish you happy new years —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:45, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Check out the Hindi Wikipedia. Thanks! Jonathan (talkcontribscomplain?) 17:23, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

What's the point of this box?[edit]

Look, I've typed in a box, but for some reason, it's presented in such a way that line-wrapping is disabled and you have to scroll to see what I wrote. Why?! --Seans Potato Business 17:27, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

I believe the box (created by a leading space at the start of a line) is used to display computer code, for one thing. According to this, it is used to preserve whatever formatting the editor adds. (It took me months to figure this out!) --Kateshortforbob 17:31, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
If you want to know how to make text in a box with normal line-wrapping then you can place the text in a table. Click "edit" to see how this example text box was made with a table. See Help:Table for more ways to design tables. PrimeHunter (talk) 18:28, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Military bases in US States[edit]

Under what part of the table of contents should these be placed? Also, are there any templates for creating an article on a State or country? ThxSmarkflea (talk) 17:52, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Which article(s) are you referring to? In an article about a US state, for example Florida, I see no reason to have a separate section name for military bases. Or do you mean which other sections to mention military bases in? That depends on the circumstances, for example which layout the article has and how important the base is to the state. Often a detail like a military base shouldn't be mentioned at all in a state article but only in other pages, for example List of United States military bases, or an article about the city the base is in. Templates don't create articles but different templates can be used to display information in an article about a state or country, for example {{Infobox U.S. state}} and {{Infobox Country}}. PrimeHunter (talk) 18:19, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Or do you mean which other sections to mention military bases in?

Yes, I think such things are interesting. Thanks for the other info.. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Smarkflea (talkcontribs) 18:39, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Editors often have different opinions about what is important enough to mention, and how much space to use on it. If you add details about military bases to state articles then others may choose to remove it. Article content can be discussed on the associated talk page, for example Talk:Kentucky. PrimeHunter (talk) 18:56, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Reverse a list[edit]

Does anyone know a text editor which can easily reverse a list. So that the last entry will be the first and the first entry is the last. I know there are some php scripts and some excel macro's which can do it, but a simple text editor with that option would be more practical. Garion96 (talk) 20:48, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

  • I'm not really sure about a text editor that could do that automatically. If you have a spreadsheet application such as Microsoft Excel, you could easily reverse the list. Hope this helps, if you don't have a spreadsheet program, cut and paste the list onto my talk page and I'll do it for you. Mr Senseless (talk) 20:59, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

publishing a new page[edit]

I am trying to publish a new page. I have entered all the info into the "sandbox" and saved the page, but its seems to still be in the sandbox. How can i publish my info on a page where is will show up in a search? Can i create a new page without using the sandbox? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Abeuke (talkcontribs) 20:56, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

  • No, the sandbox is for editing tests and is automatically cleared every day. You should cut and paste the Wiki-markup (after pressing edit this page on the sandbox page) and paste it into a newly created article. You can create an article by searching for the title of the new page, and when no match is found, click create this page. Before you do that, however, make sure a similar article doesn't exist under a different name, and be certain your contributions meet notability and verifibility guidelines and conforms to a neutral point of view. Hope this helps. Mr Senseless (talk) 21:04, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
Hi Abeuke. The text you tested in the sandbox is currently inappropriate for an article as it reads like a marketing commercial for the topic. Wikipedia is not a forum for advertising. As such it is subject to [and should be if added in that form] speedily deleted under section G11 of our criteria for speedy deletion as it appears to be a "page which exclusively promote some entity and which would need to be fundamentally rewritten to become encyclopedic." Please note a few relevant polices: Articles must be written from a neutral point of view, they must be on notable topics, the information in them must be verifiable through citation to reliable sources and they should not be written by someone involved with the subject as that presents a conflict of interest. Please also see our business faq.--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 22:04, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
More importantly than what I just wrote, you must not add this material to Wikipedia as, as I've just discovered, you would be violating the copyright of this website. You may use external websites as a source of information, but not as a source of sentences.--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 22:10, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

Wikithoritarianism vs. Wikidemocratism[edit]

I saw this on Meta: Wikithoritarianism. I never knew there were two different ways to go about using Wikipedia like that. I came across a "Wikithoritarian" on an article and got into an argument a while ago. What do you think is a more successful way of editing? (talk) 22:25, 26 December 2007 (UTC)

There's a number of philosophies with regards to editing Wikipedia. I guess I'm sort of a "WikiUnitarian" about all this; I think that each philosophy has its uses, and which one is better or more successful all depends on the context. Maybe I should just slap {{context}} on all those Meta pages just for good measure! There are some situations where Wikithoritarianism is good, and some situations where it just causes trouble. Pyrospirit (talk · contribs) 22:41, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
Moderation is key, I think. Too much concentration of power can lead to abuse; too much dispersion of power can lead to paralysis. In general, however, Wikipedia is governed by community consensus, subject to the Wikimedia Foundation's position as site owner. Another key question: is policy prescriptive (tells us what to do) or descriptive (tells others what we already do)? In practice, I think many "community norms" are made via something akin to countless iterations of the bold, revert, discuss cycle. – Luna Santin (talk) 22:44, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
How do you define "successful"? Also, it's not clear from the Wikithoritarianism essay exactly what a particular Wikithoritarian would do in a given situation. It sounds like two editors could both be Wikithoritarians and do different things. Usually, doing different things leads to different levels of "success," although both editors might define "success" self-servingly. --Teratornis (talk) 23:41, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
I might add that I'd prefer Wikipedia to be as algorithmic as possible. That is, we should standardize every procedure, in enough detail, to cover every editing situation that can ever arise. Then every editor could simply follow instructions, with no guesswork, and there would be nothing to argue about. Ultimately, machines could write Wikipedia for us (see Cyc). Of course humans do not know how to write such a complete algorithm, but Wikipedia has gone a long way with the Manual of Style and so on. At the very least, it would be good to minimize the number of times Wikipedians repeat the same dispute. Once an issue has been settled, other people should not have to waste time rehashing it unless someone has come up with new relevant information. --Teratornis (talk) 23:46, 26 December 2007 (UTC)