Wikipedia:Peer review/Enron scandal/archive1

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Enron Scandal[edit]

Hello -- obviously much work to be done but I really believe this article can and will eventually reach FA status. Particularly I'd like to get pointers regarding maybe the scope and length -- from when to when should we cover events? IN what depth? Should I add various charts and all manner of photos? Other "side" topics to cover? And anything else you might think of. Much appreciated. Pablosecca 05:23, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

My thoughts:

  • Lead: Presumes too much knowledge of financial terms - "white knight" and "blue chip", notably: This is an event important and well-known outside of the financial sphere, and so should be written for a lay audience.
I thought that it's par for the course to include jargon if you link it to pages explaining it; ? --Pablosecca 11:12, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Background: While you don't need to go into as much detail here as you will later, you need more detail than this. Give a rough idea of how Enron came into being, how it rose to become such a major power, etc. Keep it short, but give context. Try to avoid statements that presume the person already knows about the scandal like "few seemed to concern themselves with the opacity of the company's financial disclosures." - instead, mention the few who did concern themselves, and then explain why no-one listened.
Definite goal, to try and sketch out how the company worked, at least, how it was supposed to work.--Pablosecca 11:12, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Timeline: There's some awkward writing in this, like "On August 15, 2001, Jeffrey Skilling, the chief executive of Enron, a former energy consultant at McKinsey & Company who joined Enron in 1990, announced he was resigning his position after only six months." I'd be inclined to start it with him becoming CEO, then skip forward six months: That would allow information to be expressed more clearly.
    • "The columnist Paul Krugman, writing in the NY Times, asserted that Enron was an illustration of the consequences that occur from the deregulation and commodification of things such as energy" - The are consequences are being referred to are not clear at that point, and are only retrospectively explained by Ken Lay's letter. Better to summarise.
  • Investors begin to worry: pretty good section, a few insignificant format errors. However, "...possibily selling its 65% stake in the Dabhol project in India" is oddly uncertain: why?
They were uncertain about whether they'd do that at the time; it was a huge project -- anyway this could be added, I agree.--Pablosecca 11:12, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

After that point, the article looks fairly strong. But it has severe problems in the early sections, which, unfortunately, are what the reader sees first. It may be a little heavy on quotes: Quotes are best used when A. someone's statement would lose impact or believability if not given in those words: for instance, Intelligent design quotes Judge Jones' statement that intelligent design "cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents" - this is a surprisingly strong statement, and all attempts to paraphrase it either got watered down, or would be objected to. B. To present one side's POV in an unambiguous way - your quote from Ken Lay in the "Timeline" section does a good job of this. It also does a good job with C. giving a vivid sense of time, events, or location (and so on). It summarises the mood of the time well.

However, other quotes don't do that. ""In my continued discussions with the financial community, it became clear to me that restoring investor confidence would require us to replace Andy as C.F.O.," is a bland statement that doesn't really add anything that couldn't be paraphrased in simpler, more snappy terms.

Here the thinking was that since it was such a clear about-face, it was necessary to hear what Lay had to say. I at first just summarized, but upon rereading it seemed not in-depth enough. Then when I found Lay's quote, it is, as you mention, blandly corporate, but I think that tells us a lot; also the little he does tell us is of note, for instance how the 'investor confidence' problem was on his mind.--Pablosecca 11:12, 3 July 2007 (UTC)

On the whole, a good start. Concentrate on the lead, background, and opening section of the Timeline to start: That should keep people reading until they hit the good sections. Adam Cuerden talk 19:05, 2 July 2007 (UTC)

Thank you for your comments; I'll attempt to incorporate them in the coming month. Pablosecca 11:03, 3 July 2007 (UTC)