Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)

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The policy section of the village pump is used to discuss proposed policies and guidelines and changes to existing policies and guidelines.
If you want to propose something new that is not a policy or guideline, use the proposals section.
If you have a question about how to apply an existing policy or guideline, try one of the many Wikipedia:Noticeboards.
This is not the place to resolve disputes over how a policy should be implemented. Please see Wikipedia:Dispute resolution for how to proceed in such cases.

Please see this FAQ page for a list of frequently rejected or ignored proposals.

« Older discussions, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 120
Centralized discussion
Proposals: policy other Discussions Ideas
  • An RfC concerning increasing the activity requirements for bureaucrats.
  • An RfC concerning increasing the activity requirements for administrators.
  • A proposal to gradually offer both wikitext and VisualEditor to new accounts
  • Discuss proposals for celebration of the upcoming 5 millionth article on English Wikipedia
  • An RfC for a banner alert campaign on the threat to Freedom of Panorama in Europe
  • An RfC to permit trusted non-admins to close TFD discussions with uncontroversial delete outcomes
  • A proposal to forbid IPs from participating in the RfA process.
  • A proposal to elevate WP:BRD to guideline status
  • An RfC on "edit in Wikidata" links, for templates using Wikidata

Note: inactive discussions, closed or not, should be archived.


Proposal to change the focus of pending changes[edit]

This entire thread was initiated and driven on by ban-evading sock IPs. No concrete proposals were presented and discussed by legitimate editors. Fut.Perf. 10:27, 4 July 2015 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Should we enable the creation of articles by IPs with safeguards? See Wikipedia:Village pump/technical#Where do we go from here? (talk) 09:38, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

Some years ago, pending changes were introduced on an experimental basis. A subsequent RfC voted to end the experiment, but pending changes are still with us. Some administrators take advantage of this fact by putting more articles in. Most of the work on Islamic calendar, for example, is done by IPs, but since it was put in pending changes (for no good reason) editing has stopped. I suggest we enforce the RfC and that all articles currently in pending changes be taken out.

This will mean that pending changes reviewers (who I take to be everyone who is autoconfirmed) will have nothing to do. I therefore propose that IPs be given back the right to start articles for an experimental period of six months on a pending changes basis. That is to say, their articles would not be publicly visible until the text had been approved by an editor.

Technically, I suppose that what would happen would be that the article would be created and accessible as normal, with the usual edit and history tabs. The text created by the IP would appear in the edit box but would not be seen publicly (the article would appear as any page does when it has been blanked). Editing would be as normal for pending changes, with the first edit to be publicly visible being the first edit by an autoconfirmed editor. Normal deletion policy would apply.

Where an editor tags for CSD he may find it convenient to make the offending text publicly visible to assist those following up. Either way, if there are no objections an administrator will be along about fifteen minutes later to delete. Every article started in this way will automatically remain within pending changes for one month after creation.

There are two big advantages of this proposal. Article growth went well from inception until just shy of the five million mark, when it stalled. This proposal will put it back on track. It will also result in an infusion of new blood. Wikipedia is haemorrhaging editors. It desperately needs new ones. (talk) 14:46, 6 May 2015 (UTC)

Isn't that essentially AfC? Kharkiv07Talk 15:06, 6 May 2015 (UTC)
The difference is that you can put something in AfC and it hangs around for months so most people don't bother. Under this proposal you are in the driving seat so a lot more people will add worthwhile content. (talk) 15:48, 6 May 2015 (UTC)
As is, most articles created by newcomers are deleted quickly without discussion, a situation which I believe to be very BITEy, and possibly is a significant cause of Wikipedia "haemorrhaging editors"; move the permission to create articles a bit farther back, and the situation will become worse, not better. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 20:28, 6 May 2015 (UTC)
I'm confused by your proposal for a few reasons. First, IP editors can still edit with pending changes, in effect it is a weaker version of semi-protection which BLOCKS all IP editors. I would suggest moving many semi pages to pending changes actually and strongly oppose removal of pending changes. As for AfC, it works. Reviewing a new article is a process, more so than a simple pending changes button, and does take a little longer. And third, only users with the Pending changes reviewer can review the pending changes, even though any auto confirmed users edits will be accepted. EoRdE6(Come Talk to Me!) 23:31, 6 May 2015 (UTC)
  • You seem to have missed the series of RFCs that reauthorized the use of pending changes protection (level 1 only). Monty845 23:43, 6 May 2015 (UTC)
The last RfC decided that PC was wanted and it was up to editors to decide how to implement it. To date there has been no consensus on this so there is no mandate to put Islamic calendar (or any other article for that matter) into PC. PC seems to be very complex - there are at least two levels of it and SlimVirgin said she didn't understand it. I think it is too complicated. Given that here in March there was a consensus that PC should not operate for an extended period all that is needed is a week of semi - protection where necessary to drive the vandals away.
Od Mishehu says that "most articles created by newcomers are deleted quickly without discussion". That's a failure by the established editors. They should work to bring the articles up to standard, not delete them. This is why IPs should be allowed to create articles - they then get the benefit of all the other editors who know something about the subject adding sources and content. That is the essence of crowdsourcing.
Replying to EoRdE6, AfC takes months and is permanently backlogged. With direct article creation other editors can come in and get the article on the road to GA status in a few days. You see articles like the Charlie Hebdo massacre which within just a few hours of creation are full of content and sources. The system of creating stubs giving experts the opportunity to come in and build a full length article has worked well.
There is a proverb "If you want a job done do it yourself". AfC relies on getting other people to post the content to mainspace. It's a form of action by proxy which is proven to be inefficient. The British government in 2002 experimented with postal voting - included was the local council election in my area. There were no polling stations (no electronic voting here - today is the general election and everyone takes printed ballots, fills them in and posts them into the ballot box). The voters had to fill in the ballot papers then give them to the postmen who had to give them to the council. Needless to say the experiment was not repeated.
It's the same everywhere. We got supermarkets from America - before then shoppers queued at the grocer's while he picked their selections off his shelves. Now checkout operators have been done away with and customers scan their shopping themselves - no more queuing. No more queuing at the public library either - readers return and renew their books themselves at self - service kiosks, resulting in a more efficient use of their and the staff's time. Self - service machines are at railway stations - everywhere you can think of. Introduction of AfC was a retrograde step. (talk) 11:21, 7 May 2015 (UTC)
I suggest you take a reread of Wikipedia:Protection_policy#Pending changes protection and Wikipedia:Pending changes as you are mistaken. The closing statement of the last RFC which dealt with the issue is quite clear Wikipedia:PC2012/RfC 3.

There was very strong consensus to enable the use of Pending Changes throughout all namespaces

and further

The consensus on this was fairly clearly against having any specific criteria, but a significant minority expressed concern that its use is less well-defined than is the use for conventional protection methods; if enormous inconsistencies with application are seen upon implementation, this may be a topic worth revisiting

and at the end

As with the previous RfC, assessing the usefulness of what gained consensus here will require some monitoring. The same time frames (1 month for obvious problems, more for subtler issues) seem to fit with everything in this discussion as well. It appears that after this and the previous RfCs, we have the necessary framework to roll out Pending Changes, and we know what aspects of its use will require the most monitoring and later attention.

So no we aren't waiting for the community to come to some sort of agreement on how to use it. (There were earlier RfCs which also dealt with when to use PC1.)
Of course, if you feel that PC1 is being in ways that are unhelpful in some instances, you're welcome to start a properly fleshed-out RfC on the matter, but I strongly urge you to talk to others about this before hand, and make sure you actually otherstand what the history is, otherwise your RfC is unlikely to do anything useful. (As it stands, you're failing to follow information I had sort of heard before, but to be honest had mostly forgotten by now and only properly relearned by actually reading the PC page and following the links to the RfC has lead to your proposal being sidetracked by this unnecessary discussion.) Now if you feel the admin's closing wasn't an accurate summation of the RfC consensus, or if you feel that the RfCs had insufficient participation compared to earlier RfCs, you could try to dispute that, but relitigating stuff after 2+ years rarely works well.
There were two followup RfCs, Wikipedia:Pending changes/Request for Comment 2013 and Wikipedia:Pending changes/Request for Comment 2014, which concerned PC2 and ultimately came up with criteria for the use of PC2, but no actual consensus to use PC2. These don't of course affect the use of PC1, for which in the absence of clear evidence consensus has changed, we stick with the older RfCs which showed there is consensus to use PC1.
Nil Einne (talk) 15:11, 9 May 2015 (UTC)
Your example also seems fairly poor.

Perhaps Islamic calendar may have had useful IP edits, but it also had many that were reverted (which look to be more or less the same edit from a persistent IP hopper). I didn't look in to these enough to say if the reversions were proper, simply that they happened therefore whether before or after PC, IP edits were being rejected.

More importantly perhaps, the time frame here is insufficient to tell us anything about pending changes, particularly if you look at the logs or edit history carefully. On 13 April, both PC1 and semi protection were applied with the PC1 due to expire on 13 July and the semiprotection on 27 April. My thoughts and a search confirmed via Wikipedia:Help desk/Archives/2015 March 18#Pending changes and Semi-protection simultaneously that this works and is evidently done sometimes when it's felt that there is an acute problem that needs to be dealt with via semiprotection for a short time, and a chronic problem that needs PC1.

Without commenting on whether this was the case for Islamic calender, this means it was impossible for IPs to directly edit from 17:36 13 April to 27 April. So there's a fair chance the absence of IP edits for this period had nothing to do with PC1.

So really all you're talking about is from 27 April until now. In that period, we had 3 IP edits. 2 were rejected, 1 accepted. Again without commenting on the appropriateness of any of these edits, unless we were getting an average of 1 useful IP edit on average every 3 days or so (which it doesn't look like we were), it's difficult to useful conclude things were so much better before PC1. You simply lack sufficient data to be able to make any conclusion about a reduction of helpful IP edits. And at the very least, the editor who kept making the same change which I think lead up to the semiprotections and PC1 seems to have left for now.

BTW, for the avoidance of doubt and confusion, I should mention I'm aware editors who haven't been auto/confirmed are affected as well, I just used IPs for shorthand and since it's also harder to spot such editors.

Nil Einne (talk) 15:59, 9 May 2015 (UTC)

I think that the proposal that an article should go into PC just because a lot of IPs don't edit it is misconceived. The Islamic calendar is hardly a mainstream subject. Your comments on PC generally are a joke. About twenty years ago the local council proposed to demolish a housing estate and being short of cash proposed to sell off the land to a private developer. To do that, it needed the consent of the tenants. It assured them that the estate would not be sold if the majority were opposed. The tenants kept asking for a ballot but the council ignored them. Finally the ballot papers arrived, and the tenants were dismayed to see that their votes would be rolled up among those of tenants on other estates which were going to be refurbished. This followed an "opinion poll" conducted by a survey company which doorknocked to ask the tenants what they wanted for their estate but did not ask the key question Do you want your estate to be sold or not? The council's ballot paper was craftily worded - not "Do you want your estate to be sold?" as discussed in literature and meetings but "Do you want your home to be sold, meaning that the tenants' views would be submerged amongst the views of all the tenants on other estates who were going to get new kitchens and bathrooms instead of seeing their homes reduced to rubble.
Same here, there was a lot of discussion about how pending changes might work, but no discussion of whether its reenablement would be a good or bad thing. Since pending changes is a dead loss, let me reformulate my proposal. IPs would be able to create articles just as before Siegenthaler with one exception - edits by non - autoconfirmed editors would only become publicly visible when the page was first edited by an autoconfirmed user. (talk) 13:21, 12 May 2015 (UTC)

The claim "Some years ago, pending changes were introduced on an experimental basis. A subsequent RfC voted to end the experiment, but pending changes are still with us" is factually untrue. What happened is that PC was implemented with permission of the community with the restriction that it be removed after a set period, that promise was broken and PC remained, then all hell broke loose. Later, after it was removed and we put down the pitchforks and torches, a second proposal was made to implement PC permanently, and the decision of the community was yes for level one PC and no for level two PC. So the reality is that [A] the current PC policy is supported by the community and [B] we would be fools to ever again believe a promise like "let's try this for six months and then we will turn it off and evaluate how theexperiment went" after having been lied to in the past. --Guy Macon (talk) 13:34, 21 May 2015 (UTC)

Editors were given two alternatives: PC anywhere or PC in restricted areas. The third alternative, PC nowhere, was not presented. This is the same trick the council played when wording its ballot on council house selloffs. After John Prescott was told where he could stick his housing policy he came up with more alternatives:
  • transfer to private landlord (and if you disagree there's no money to maintain your home so it will fall to pieces around you)
  • private finance initiative (PFI) where developers get a long lease in return for financing the work
  • arms - length management organisation (ALMO) where the council retains ownership of the homes but the management is farmed out to a quango (quasi non - governmental organisation).

The fourth option, stay as you are, was not presented.

Tenants were ballotted on the three options and - surprise - the council claimed 80% of them were in favour of option 3. In fact, hardly anyone voted, so the actual percentage in favour was tiny.

As for broken promises, anyone can start an RfC suggesting that PC be turned off, and if it wins a consensus that's more power to the community. Don't underestimate the power of public opinion - Prescott had a scheme to decimate (and I don't mean reduce by 10%) perfectly serviceable housing in Liverpool which was withdrawn in the face of strong opposition. (talk) 16:30, 21 May 2015 (UTC) ────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────, I suggest that you read the discussions and RfCs in question and edit the above claims accordingly.

In particular, Wikipedia:PC2012/RfC 2 and Wikipedia:PC2012/RfC 3 clearly show that your your claim "The third alternative, PC nowhere, was not presented" has zero basis in reality. Did you really imagine that nobody would check? --Guy Macon (talk) 21:33, 21 May 2015 (UTC)

You've linked to eleven RfCs on this subject. I was given just two to look up, one of them being Wikipedia:PC2012/RfC3 which you also cite. I don't see anywhere in that wall of text where editors were asked to !vote on the proposition "Do you (a) want to enable PC or (b) switch it off. (talk) 08:43, 22 May 2015 (UTC)
Actually you were given 2, which all have the header showing all the RfCs. More importantly, your original comment was "The last RfC decided that PC was wanted and it was up to editors to decide how to implement it. To date there has been no consensus on this".

I'm sure I wasn't the only one who assumed that this meant you were already aware of Wikipedia:Pending changes/Request for Comment 2012 (which had, we think at least 503 participants) where the decision had already been made that PC was wanted. It sounded like you only weren't aware about the following RfCs (together I think with the discussions on the policy page), where decisions were made and consensus reached on how to implement the existing consensus for PC.

I don't know that much about the history surrounding all the RfCs, but I presume the decision was made that there was no need to revisit the decision to implement PC since it had already achieved consensus in the earlier RfC. (Although opposition to PC wasn't ignored, it just wasn't made a specific question in the RfC.) Note that the consensus wasn't conditional on there being a final yes or no !vote (which is a silly concept anyway) on whether to implement PC after a policy a better policy was in place.

In fact the RfC itself didn't even find there was need for consensus for a new policy, the draft policy was sufficient but not ideal. Notably also, it looks to me like there were far more participants in the decision to implement PC, rather than the later discussions surrounding PC policy. (Only the 2013 RfC about PC/2 seems to have come close but also still quite far.)

However if you believe consensus has changed, you're welcome to open yet another RfC. It would of course pay to do your own reading in the hope you will show a far better understanding then you have here on the history. Rather then expecting to be spoonfed everything when you are the one making the proposal. If not, frankly your proposal is likely to fail as much as your one here.

Not to put a subtle point on it, but your original comments were bad enough. Now it sounds like you didn't even know about the major RfC despite being up in arms about how PC never had consensus (even if it wasn't the focus of your proposal). If you start an RfC where the focus is disabling PC saying there was never any consensus, and you say this partly because you weren't even aware of the RfC which had (we think) at least 503 participants, well expect to be ignored.

Nil Einne (talk) 17:01, 28 May 2015 (UTC)

Hello, here's my view on the subject. In a word, social issues can't be solved with technical solutions. --NaBUru38 (talk) 00:53, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

I think it's time to add a comment which has been sitting on's talk page for days waiting to be pasted over.

@Nil Einne:Would you please paste the following statement to the Village pump (policy) discussion.

I've been given confusing references - RFC 2012 (Sept.Oct.Nov), Wikipedia:PC2012/RfC 2, Wikipedia:2012/RfC 3, and now Wikipedia:Pending changes/Request for Comment 2012. Having read through this last I see that editors endorsed the use of PC in line with a draft policy. This draft policy explains the variations PC1 and PC2 but says nothing about which one is the more desirable or whether neither is desirable. After mentioning the above RfC you mention "the following RfCs ...where decisions were made and consensus reached on how to implement the existing consensus for PC."

@Nil Einne:RFC 2013 and RFC 2014 are by definition "following RfCs". RFC 2013 decided

There is only a consensus for implementation if and only if an rfc concerning criteria for its use gains community - wide consensus first.

So there is one more RfC to look at - RFC 2014 - and the close of that is a reiteration that PC will not be implemented until there is a consensus on how to implement it. If and when that discussion takes place it would be totally wrong to deny editors the opportunity to decide that they don't want PC at all. This is the principle of "no parliament can bind its successor". (talk) 08:48, 30 May 2015 (UTC)

Since the link at the top of this section no longer works I'm adding the content here:

At a time when the long - term viability of Wikipedia is in doubt, editors have been discussing invigorating the community by enabling the creation of articles by IPs subject to safeguards. There have been no opposes. WMF have been asked to comment and have raised no objections. The mood of the community appears to be that the change should be implemented. Presumably it would involve reversing the post - Siegenthaler dev changes and moving onto a "level 3" pending changes regime in which pending changes would be turned off immediately an autoconfirmed editor edited the article. What is the procedure for turning an agreed change into reality? (talk) 10:22, 21 May 2015 (UTC)

That change is far from agreed upon, I see more people rallying for complete removal of IP editing than this. We have WP:AfC that let's IP editors create an article, and that is all that has been agreed so far. NPP is badly backlogged, and it is well documented that most articles by new editors fail, no references, pure advertising etc. I can't see consensus on this anytime soon. EoRdE6(Come Talk to Me!) 13:09, 21 May 2015 (UTC)
That's the whole point of allowing new users to do things, so they learn enough to become valuable contributors down the line. Checking the new pages feed I saw one article at the top of the list awaiting review. A few seconds later it had been patrolled. If PC is turned off, all the PC reviewers can turn their attention elsewhere.
If you think people are agitating for the removal of IP editing you're looking in the wrong place. The proposition in the March proposals RfC was to ban IP editing or never unprotect a semiprotected page. It was defeated nemo contradicente. Some quotes:
  • Wikipedia is the encyclopedia that anyone can edit.
  • There are plenty of people that come on Wikipedia reading, notice a problem and, as an IP, fix it.
  • If we block IP editing, we'll move one step closer to being like Citizendum. With all due respect to Sanger's efforts, visit Citizendum's website and see how spotty their articles are. There are some very well - known topics that don't have articles there. That's what happens when you make it hard to edit a wiki. Do you want that to happen to us?
  • 81.9% of edits by unregistered users were not vandalism. (talk) 17:57, 21 May 2015 (UTC)
  • Strong agreement with If you want to count edits that occurred as a result of our IP editing policy, count all of mine, because I started as an IP editor and would have never started if this had been one more website that requires registration. --Guy Macon (talk) 20:56, 21 May 2015 (UTC)
Discussion has now slowed. There is a clear consensus that this useful change should be implemented. Can someone please close accordingly. (talk) 08:12, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
I can count one person (Guy Macon) in both this discussion and the one at VPP who agrees with you. How is that clear consensus? --Ahecht (TALK
) 16:16, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
2 to 1 in favour = 66 2/3% majority. (talk) 18:43, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
I am tempted to apply a close as you requested. My close would be NO CONSENSUS based on a majority of one, and NO CONSENSUS based on a participation of 3 being grossly inadequate to propose a major sitewide change. If you want to seek a consensus for change I suggest you slap an RFC notice on here. That will get you participation and a close. Alsee (talk) 07:18, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
Seconded. Not enough participation to ratify a major change. Samsara 07:23, 27 May 2015 (UTC)
I see that an RfC has been started at Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)#Proposal to change the focus of pending changes. (talk) 11:36, 31 May 2015 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)
I note that discussion has paused. Can we confirm that now this has been made into an RfC this discussion has legitimacy, irrespective of the participation? The proposer is an IP so is not in a position to advertise this at WP:CEN but if any editor feels it necessary no doubt he or she will do it him - or herself. I think the legitimacy of the decision here is a given taking into account that the removal of IP article creation powers was never authorised by the community. (talk) 12:56, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
I just found out that this idea of starting an article out with a blank page is not new. At present, non - autoconfirmed editors do their articles in their sandbox, then an autoconfirmed editor creates the blank page and the first editor pastes the content from the sandbox. So I can say with confidence (correct me if anyone disagrees) that even if nobody contributes to this discussion in the remaining fifteen days we have the mandate to make this tweak in the software. (talk) 14:21, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Strong Oppose AfC is the process for this, there is no reason to have a duplicate process. What we need is more AfC reviewers, not another backlog. In my personal opinion we should be going in the opposite direction, preventing unconfirmed users from creating articles at all and have them go through AfC. If I recall there was no consensus on this change in the past, but AfC is great for preventing bad articles from being created in mainspace and exists as a less bitely alternative to deletion. Winner 42 Talk to me! 14:42, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I surveyed article creation in the fifteen minutes before 3 pm this afternoon. Within half an hour a third of them had been deleted. The percentage may be much higher, because after deletion articles no longer appear in the list. So your argument that putting everything through AfC is less bitey doesn't hold water. A lot of new articles are templated, and the creators (or others) then come along and do the necessary fix. Leaving a submission languishing in AfC for months is a sure way to create a backlog. And don't forget that all those AfC and PC reviewers will now be patrolling new pages, so all those backlogs will disappear. (talk) 15:47, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure where you are getting your information. In the past 12 hours only 3 active AfC submissions have been deleted. Two were deleted for copyright infringement and one because it was created by a block evading user. If we look at articles created in mainspace in the same time frame, I see hundreds of deletions under A7 and/or G11 in the deletion log by unconfirmed users. If those unconfirmed users created their articles in AfC space, most if not all of those deletions could have been avoided. Additionally the idea that the AfC backlog goes on for months is misleading. Most articles are dealt with within the first week with difficult submissions finding their way to the backlog. The idea that new page patrol is doing better is inaccurate, it has a 764 day backlog compared to AfC's 4 week backlog. Winner 42 Talk to me! 16:22, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
I think you're comparing apples with pears. Those hundreds of deletions can't be articles by unconfirmed users because unconfirmed editors can't create articles. They must be articles by autoconfirmed editors, which proves my point. Since the work of unconfirmed editors isn't being deleted in AfC that shows that they are the ones who are clued up. So let's give them their head and get rid of AfC. It's win - win all round. (talk) 18:55, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
That is incorrect, you do not require either form of confirmation to create articles. Winner 42 Talk to me! 23:42, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose - Just because you can do something doesn't mean you should. Create an account, learn the ropes, then edit. Tarc (talk) 19:18, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Tarc, how wrong can you be? This very issue is being discussed at the RfA talkpage and your view is a tiny minority. Here's an extract from a survey cited in the discussion:

According to this [1] most of the content comes from IPs.

This quote is revealing:

If Wikipedia is written by occasional contributors, then growing it requires making it easier and more rewarding to contribute occasionally. Instead of trying to squeeze more work out of those who spend their life on Wikipedia, we need to broaden the base of those who contribute just a little bit.

Unfortunately, precisely because such people are only occasional contributors, their opinions aren't heard by the current Wikipedia process. They don't get involved in policy debates, they don't go to meetups, and they don't hang out with Jimbo Wales. And so things that might help them get pushed on the back burner, assuming they're ever proposed.

Out of sight is out of mind, so it's a short hop to thinking these invisible people aren't particularly important. Thus Wales's belief that 500 people wrote half an encyclopedia. Thus his assumption that outsiders contribute mostly vandalism and nonsense. And thus the comments you sometimes hear that making it hard to edit the site might be a good thing.

"I'm not a wiki person who happened to go into encyclopedias," Wales told the crowd at Oxford. "I'm an encyclopedia person who happened to use a wiki." So perhaps his belief that Wikipedia was written in the traditional way isn't surprising. Unfortunately, it is dangerous. If Wikipedia continues down this path of focusing on the encyclopedia at the expense of the wiki, it might end up not being much of either. (talk) 19:36, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Tarc, how wrong can you be? Well I suppose very much so, in any given circumstance. This is not one of them however, as IPs are not people, they are addresses. You under the guise of "", have no more right to vote than my post office box downtown does. If you wish to participate in all aspects of this project, then make an account, and accumulate a significant number of edits to show that you're actually here for good and not here to push a certain agenda. Thank you for pointing out the RfA discussion, I have weighted in over there as well. Note that the IP who initiated this discussion...who may very well be you Mr. ""...has been blocked for 6 months for disruption. Curious, that. Tarc (talk) 20:24, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

Show you're actually here for good and not here to push a certain agenda.

So everyone who states their views, and gives reasons, is up to no good?

Exactly right, Tarc. IPs are not people — they are random screeds of numbers with an uncanny ability to type out coherent thoughts as though they were somehow sentient like you or I. They are faceless, nameless entities whose mere presence creates a cognitive dissonance of sorts, in that there is something almost human-like about them. These mysterious beings lurk within the shadows of our community-based project, tainting its sanctity with their identities of integers. They have no business editing in non-IP namespaces, where only us real editors should be participating.

No wonder you're a topic banned editor. (talk) 13:22, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

Winner 42, I just typed "The 2015 Tower Hamlets mayoral election" and a message came back

The page "The 2015 Tower Hamlets mayoral election" does not exist. You can ask for it to be created, but consider checking the search results below to see whether the topic is already covered. (talk) 13:39, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
I'd rather be a topic-banned editor than a fully-banned one, which is what you likely are, given the wiki-familiarity and the whiny rancor. This is why IP editors will remain exactly as they are now; barred from participation in some parts of the project and viewed with suspicion and disdain in the rest. So who is this, Russavia? Demiwit? Benjiboy? Tarc (talk) 13:42, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Can I vote to enable PC2 here? Cuz I like PC2, and I think it should be enabled. If not, then I guess I don't care that much about this RFC, because it seems like this is mostly just a bit ranting, and I don't want to read it all. I'm involved in enough drama as-is. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 04:59, 16 June 2015 (UTC)

Courtesy break[edit]

There are two proposals being considered:

(1) To re - enable the creation of articles by non - autoconfirmed users per the community consensus which was ignored when the creation power was taken away. PC1 will apply to an article started by a non - autoconfirmed editor until an autoconfirmed editor edits it, when it will automatically come out of PC.

(2) To disable PC, per the original consensus (the only consensus we have ever had on PC) except for the limited use described above. (talk) 19:16, 17 June 2015 (UTC)

Discussion is entering its final week. There have been efforts in the past few days by some high - placed editors in various venues to formalise a second - class status for IP editors. These proposals have been roundly defeated. We have seen that a vast number of articles started by autoconfirmed editors are being deleted. Articles started by IPs will not suffer this fate, since IP editors tend to be knowledgeable in the specific subjects they write about. The discussion so far shows that the community is not opposed to re - enabling IP article creation. From the very beginnings of the project there has been strong community support for tapping this rich lode of expertise, and Wikipedia's problems only began when this resource was switched off and editors' attentions were diverted from editing to nibbling at the backlog on AfC. The switchoff was done suddenly, without either warning or discussion - editors awoke one morning to be presented with a fait accompli. After a month of discussion we now have a clear mandate to restore the status ante quo. (talk) 08:38, 19 June 2015 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

MOS:IDENTITY clarification[edit]

As is to be expected, there's some issues brought up at Talk:Caitlyn Jenner on how to handle certain aspects of self-identity in Wikipedia articles. MOS:IDENTITY clearly indicates that in issues of self-identified gender, Wikipedia defaults to the most recently expressed wishes of the subject of the article. The question is, to what extent does MOS:IDENTITY apply. Does it apply only to the article about the subject, or does it apply Wikipedia wide, to every article, and in every context. The specific question came up with how to identify Ms. Jenner in regards to her participation at the 1976 Summer Olympics, she identified at that time as a male. We know that in the article about her, we use her preferred name and female pronouns throughout. The reasonable question becomes, in articles where the time period in question does not include the phases of her life where she self-identified as female, do we use her current identity or her historic identity? To put this up to a !vote:

Option 1)
  • In articles outside of the biography itself, the timeframe of which only covers the period when the person self-identified as one gender, with a particular name, default to the historic name and gender
Option 2)
  • In every article across Wikipedia, all mentions of the transgendered person should use their current name and gender identity.

I don't really have a horse in the race, but I wanted to see what the consensus was, so it could be clarified in the relevant guidelines and policies. --Jayron32 02:35, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

This RfC illustrates recent consensus (or lack thereof) about MOS:IDENTITY, it's worth giving a look. Diego (talk) 12:24, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

Adding a third and fourth option per suggestions in the general discussion below. They seem to be a viable compromises between options 1 and 2 above.

Option 3)
  • In articles outside of the biography itself, use the person's chosen name, but include previous name in parentheses if directly relevant or when discussing events for which the person was notable and known by their previous name (e.g., athletic awards) prior to name change. Example, in a list of Olympic gold medalists, the entry Caitlyn Jenner (then Bruce Jenner) would be used.
Option 4)
  • In articles outside of the biography itself, use the person's previous name, but include current name in parentheses. Would be used when previous name is relevant or listed in a historical context (e.g., list of sports awards). Example, in a list of Olympic gold medalists, the entry Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner) would be used. (3 and 4 added by EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 20:32, 2 June 2015 (UTC))

Sorry for coming a bit late to this party but I added a fifth option down below:

Option 5)
  • #Option 5 (no new rule, treat on a case by case base): avoid a "one size fits all" solution for the subsidiary, event and overview pages mentioning the person exclusively in an earlier period: approach these in a case-by-case logic, exerting caution, good taste, editor discretion – for clarity: without amending or cutting back any of the existing rules like MOS:IDENTITY that seem to work fine in the surroundings for which they were devised. --Francis Schonken (talk) 20:39, 10 June 2015 (UTC); updated for clarity 08:03, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 1 (preserve historic gender)[edit]

  1. Support - Thanks for starting this! I support this for historic purposes, such as athletic accomplishments, as well as for past relationships that are over (Kris Jenner was married to Bruce Jenner; she was not married to Caitlyn); but not for continuing relationships (ie Brody Jenner's parents are Caitlyn Jenner and Linda Thompson) МандичкаYO 😜 02:55, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    To add on to Wikimandia (—МандичкаYO)'s point, something definitely needs to be done regarding the marriage aspect; see this edit, where Andreas11213 understandably stated, "This implies that she was in a lesbian relationship when she was in fact not. She was married to Bruce Jenner not Caitlyn Jenner." Flyer22 (talk) 04:48, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    The major factor to consider with these other articles is that, as we do our best to get it right with Caitlyn Jenner, we must also get it right with Kris Jenner as this is also a WP:BLP. So on Kris Jenner's article, it would not be particularly fair or accurate to say her wife for 20 years was Caitlyn Jenner. That would be very misleading in a biography about her, because yes it does imply she was a lesbian, or she that knew Bruce identified as Caitlyn even though she claims she didn't, or any of of the complicated things that we have no business trying to work around. МандичкаYO 😜 05:01, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Wikimandia: Kris Jenner's page would state that she was married to Caitlyn Jenner while she was living as a man. Ogress smash! 22:02, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    That would be incorrect. It would also be incorrect to list "Caitlyn Jenner" as Brody's father. Kris and Brody might not support the use of female pronouns or "Caitlyn" to describe their husband/father respectively. There is no reason to favor Caitlyn Jenner's transition name and gender over the historical name and gender that they presented to other living people or where historical events make the name and gender relevant such as the winner of the Men's Decathlon and credits in movies long since finished. --DHeyward (talk) 10:52, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. In general support but there are complications. Jenner's interview mentions being dressed in women's underclothes in the past when presenting as a male publicly, so there is the issue of what gender they considered themselves at what times. Gaijin42 (talk) 03:28, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Not really. We only deal with the public aspect that is covered by reliable sources. Most likely she identified as female from very early in her life and I've not seen anything mentioning a fluid gender where she identified differently. Regardless of what underpants she wore, she was publicly male, won the Men's Decathlon, played multiple male roles in media, fathered multiple children, etc, etc. Whether she wears boxers or briefs or can still pee while standing up is not relevant to historical and public facts. Nor is it relevant to current events where she identifies as female and her name is Caitlyn. --DHeyward (talk) 10:39, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support - I think it would be silly to start listing "Caitlyn" as a medalist in the "Men's" event. Alternatively, in cases where it's ambiguous which is more appropriate, she can be listed as Caitlyn (formerly Bruce) Jenner? Just a thought. -War wizard90 (talk) 04:08, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Not sure where I stand yet, but could it not be listed as Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner? Vyselink (talk) 19:46, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    It's called a "redirect". Ogress smash! 20:50, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. Support - It makes no sense to refer to Jenner as a "she" when Jenner was legally a Male. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:4a:101:8610:99fa:284d:2c1d:1380 (talkcontribs)
    'legally' is not the threshold under our policy around biographies of living people. To make it that threshold would be to draw an entirely uneven and artificial line (as well as a tremendously unfair one) Ironholds (talk) 07:26, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Should we base Wikipedia on legal definitions, then? A tremendous number of things would need to change. Also, which legal system did you mean? Ogress smash! 20:50, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Support - She's drawn her own line of demarcation for us. Before today, his accomplishments were as Bruce Jenner; from today onward, her life is as Caitlyn Jenner. --Drmargi (talk) 04:49, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Did she? Awesome. Just when I thought I couldn't like her more, she does that for us!!! МандичкаYO 😜 05:01, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  6. Support obviously this may not apply to every case, but generally pre-Caitlyn Jenner articles and links should be Bruce Jenner articles, links, or accomplishments. That's what redirects are for. Fyunck(click) (talk) 05:19, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  7. Support During the times of his major public appearances, the Olympics (and all of his athletic career) and all of his post athletic movie and TV career, and celebrity existence until 2015, HE was known as Bruce Jenner, performing in male roles and events. To ex-post facto refer to such a notable identity in a new transgendered identity is to go back and rewrite history. That is not wikipedia's role. In fact, we are specifically supposed to follow sources. The reporting of his accomplishments in anything written before 2015 refers to this individual in a male identity. Before we change every record of his appearance before 2015, somebody please show a source contemporary to those activities using the new female name. Its is clearly impossible because the name did not exist publicly until a few days ago, so all of this change to content is unsourced and against key wikipedia policy. That goes the same for any individual undergoing the transgender change. If they have a historical public identity, we should follow that up to the point in time they announced their change. Certainly we can cross link so we can see who they are now, but for example Chaz Bono was seen millions of American television viewers as Chastity. Bradley Manning is the name reported of the individual originally charged with espionage. These situations are confusing enough to follow, obviously beyond the norm. Repeating: To artificially rewrite history, against the reporting of sources is not wikipedia's role. Trackinfo (talk) 05:45, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Neither is deadnaming or denying a BLP's right to self-determination and self-identity, so your emphasis of male pronouns is unnecessary. I'd suggest revisiting it. Ironholds (talk) 07:26, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Support - Agree that it would be entirely confusing to refer to Caitlyn Jenner competing in male sports. Are we to assume that official Olympics records have been updated to change Bruce to Caitlyn? Seems very unlikely to me. I wouldn't see a problem with the form "U.S. track and field athlete Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner) won the gold medal for decathlon, setting a world record of 8,634 points." That form could be mentioned in the guideline, but it should be a tentative mention. It should be clear that the new name may be shown following the then-current name, but that it's local discretion. And that form is much preferable to "Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner)" in a male context.
    Additionally the question of which name to link when both are given is closely related to this question, is almost as important, and probably should be addressed in the guideline as well. "Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)" or "Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)"? Or, for that matter, "Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)"? This will be a battleground issue and will need resolving before long, but I guess we don't need to complicate this discussion further. ―Mandruss  07:33, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Moved to Option 4. ―Mandruss  22:12, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  8. Oppose per WP:BLP - The concerns expressed at MOS:IDENTITY apply to all content about the person, not just the biography article, as being the safest with respect to protection of the living person. Talking about "the historic gender" or "historic identity" is one of those misconceptions that the rules in the guideline try to address - gender identity has a biological component, so self-identification is the most reliable source, and in transgender persons often goes all the way to when they presented a different public identity. If the problem is one of using female to someone competing in male disciplines, that can be explained by mentioning the fact that she's a transgender woman - which would be relevant in that context (Transgender in sports is a notable topic). I think using the name used at the time would be OK (in this case Bruce) as it was the name used for registration in the competition, but not using the male pronoun. See Wikipedia:WikiProject LGBT studies/Guidelines and the proposed Wikipedia:Naming conventions (identity)#Sex and sexual identities for criteria commonly used by the LGBT wikiproject. Diego (talk) 09:17, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  9. Support - I also think War wizard90's additional idea is even better, listing in some cases "Caitlyn (formerly Bruce) Jenner". As currently in her article (and infobox) it would seem Caitlyn Jenner was married in a lesbian relationship, which is not the case. --Gonnym (talk) 10:04, 2 June 2015 (UTC) Moved to Option 4. --Gonnym (talk) 09:41, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
    You don't need to repeal MOS:IDENTITY to avoid that problem as this option proposes, just clarify the sentence. Diego (talk) 10:07, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  10. Support using the Caitlyn name in some form in all body-text. For more constrained historical situations (tables, lists, etc) it may be better to use Bruce Jenner with a footnote (or similar) containing the new name and potentially a longer explanation. Stuartyeates (talk) 10:35, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  11. oppose a blanket "preserve historical gender" as a clear conflict of Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style#Identity. But we do need to be clear about things - a Caitlyn - Kris Jenner marriage would still be illegal in about half the states. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 12:23, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    @TheRedPenOfDoom:: legal standards may not be the best standard to use here, as even the law is not entirely clear on what happens assuming you are just talking about the US. Ogress smash! 21:52, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    The legal implications are of a concern to us via BLP - implicating that living people were in a "same sex marriage" when such were illegal in all 50 states. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 22:20, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    No offense, but this seems like concern trolling: how does this affect Wikipedia, exactly? You are suggesting a BLP about a living person can't state they were married and use pronouns because same-sex marriage was illegal? What does that even mean? What concern is that? Ogress smash! 21:59, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    WP:BLP is quite clear that we do not propagate improper implications about living people. Making claims/implications that someone was in an illegal marriage is one of the many things that we should be quite concerned about. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 16:16, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  12. Support for all historic cases. The person's name at the time of the event is the name that should be used in our articles. ¡Bozzio! 13:24, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  13. Support using historic gender and name in articles talking about past events, although I like the idea of a parenthetical like, "Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner." For examples where we already follow this format see Metta World Peace formerly Ron Artest. When discussing his career prior to the name change is is referred to as Artest. After the name change he is referred to as World Peace. We should do the same thing with Jenner. When discussing his previous life and accomplishments, refer to him as a male named Bruce. When discussing her current life and accomplishments, refer to her as a female named Caitlyn. Explain the situation wherever clarification is needed. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 14:57, 2 June 2015 (UTC) (Moving support to Option 4; since that's essentially what I'm arguing here.)~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 18:17, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  14. Support. Kris married, um, the other person when that person went by "Bruce", and they divorced while the other person still went by "Bruce". Kris was never married to the other person when the latter was known as "Caitlyn". To say that Kris married Caitlyn is like saying they are a lesbian couple, which is patently false and thus a BLP violation. Besides, it would be confusing to say, "Caitlyn competed in male sports". It just doesn't happen. Epic Genius (talk) 16:30, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  15. Support. It is way too confusing and contradicts the historic reliable sources otherwise. I'm sure there will be exceptions, but the general rule should be to use the historic gender and name outside of the main bio article when referencing the past. Rreagan007 (talk) 16:50, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  16. Oppose - MOS:IDENTITY is policy and specifies that we use the current gender identity throughout the article. The subject's preference overrides any and all arguments. WP:BLP does not leave us the option to choose this. Skyerise (talk) 16:52, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    WP:SOURCE is also policy, a policy I would suggest is an even bigger policy. We have a dispute between policies and it should be settled by a discussion, and hey look at this, Here's a discussion. Your policy does not trump seeking a solution. As I suggest elsewhere, nobody can produce a historical source for the names and gender identity that were revealed later. In the case of Jenner, "Bruce" is documented winning the Olympic gold medal, "Bruce" was the celebrity, TV and Movie star. "Bruce" is in the opening credits of the Kardashians. Caitlyn appeared into the public's view of this individual in 2015. If Caitlyn is the chosen identity, it was not revealed to the public until 2015. Until that time, based on sources, we should not go back and rewrite information that is contradictory to the existing sources. To do so would be . . . what's the word? . . . its our favorite word on wikipedia: UNSOURCED. Trackinfo (talk) 08:45, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Trackinfo, like I noted in the second subsection, MOS:IDENTITY is a guideline; it's not yet policy, and might not be policy in the future. Flyer22 (talk) 01:07, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    I'm not even sure the difference, though Policy sounds more important. Whatever hierarchical level, I have suggested on the Caitlyn Jenner talk page that this MOS needs to be revisited in light of the crazy effect its application is having. Trackinfo (talk) 06:20, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    Trackinfo, WP:Policies and guidelines explains the difference. Flyer22 (talk) 11:15, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    MOS:IDENTITY is NOT policy, it's only a guideline. That's even stated at the top of the page. --AussieLegend () 13:56, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  17. Support for historical events per WP:V. The preponderance of reliable sources would say that Bruce won the decathlon, or married Kris, or won the "Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year", not that Caitlyn did. --Ahecht (TALK
    ) 16:54, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Note that the concerns of harm towards living people justify the exception to using the common name, as WP:BLP override other policies regarding the amount of detail from sources to use in such cases. Diego (talk) 17:12, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    For my enlightenment, and possibly that of others, please explain how Ms Jenner will be harmed by our acknowledgement that she won gold in men's Olympics as Bruce, especially if we acknowledge her current name at the same time. Does avoiding harm mean the eradication of any mention that a man named Bruce Jenner ever existed? What policy support exists for that, that doesn't require a ton of subjective interpretation? ―Mandruss  17:34, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    The problem is not in the verifiable fact that Jenner won the competition under the name of Bruce (nor hiding that fact is mandated by the guideline); the problem is using the male pronouns "he, him" on someone who identifies as a woman. See Wikipedia:Gender identity#Self-identification and Wikipedia:Gender identity#Retroactivity (which explains it better that I could), and the various statements by official psychiatric organizations linked from it. As for whether the person named Bruce Jenner that won the Olympics was a man, that's something to ask miss Jenner herself; common courtesy as well as WP:BLP and WP:NPOV require that we don't assume that she was a man merely because other people said so, nor because she looked like one. Diego (talk) 18:09, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    I don't think it's proper to use pages classified as essays as bases for arguments here. They are someone's opinion and lack community consensus; that's why they're only essays. As for BLP and NPOV, I said "doesn't require a ton of subjective interpretation". You can't just throw policy links around, please point to specific language in either policy that clearly supports your claims. ―Mandruss  18:16, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    In more ambiguous cases I might agree, but in this case we don't have to ask Ms Jenner now because we know that at the time the person named Bruce Jenner publicly self-identified as male and entered the Olympics as a male. --Ahecht (TALK
    ) 22:14, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  18. Support as a general rule. We shouldn't go back and anachronistically change the maiden name of an athlete to their married name. Nor would we go back and change all mentions of Ron Artest]] to Metta World Peace from the point before he changed his name. The same should be true here. Of course, if the IOC were to go and retroactively change this, then we have an entirely different discussion on our hands. Resolute 17:19, 2 June 2015 (UTC)<
    Strike that, I misread the question. Resolute 17:21, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Strike my strike. I think it remains relevant. Resolute 20:03, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  19. Support Jenner should be referred to as "Bruce Jenner" when discussing events that happened before June 1, 2015 and as "Caitlyn Jenner" when discussing events that happened afterwards. It is the same reason we have articles called Fall of Saigon, Battle of Königsberg, and Battle of Stalingrad instead of "Fall of Ho Chi Minh City", "Battle of Kaliningrad", and "Battle of Volgograd". [[[Kris Jenner]] was never married to a woman named Caitlyn, only to a man named Bruce. Bobby Martnen (talk) 17:56, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  20. Support - It was Bruce who won it at the time. It would be confusing to say Caitlyn as it would give the appearance that Caitlyn actually competed and won it. Keep it simple and preserve what has actually happened and move foward from there.AlaskanNativeRU (talk) 19:04, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  21. Support - This seems to be the sensible approach. I can't imagine that other encyclopedias, almanacs, and various information repositories would revise their historical coverage of subjects to align with their current gender identity.- MrX 19:12, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  22. Support - Although I'd be in favor of a clearer proposal, I feel inclined to this proposal on the hand. I think the issue is pretty clear-cut: we should use whichever name juridically in force at any given peculiar moment (e.g .Bruce Jenner in 1976, Caitlyn Jenner in 2015). That's a juridical issue, and we hardly can fight against that.
    When it comes to gender, we should distinguish between "gender identity" (subjective experience) and "gender" (an immutable biological component). Once an individual is born male, he will always remain a male. That's also the case with medical records. We can pay homage, however, to the individual's "subjective experience" by respecting and acknowledging one's right to choose his/her name. That's different from the biological gender (he/she), though. Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 19:41, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Individual's name is a juridical matter. When it comes to that, I think we should use whichever name in force at the particular moment (e.g. Bruce Jenner in 1976, Caitlyn Jenner in 2015). In technical terms, I think that "gender as a subjective experience" is mostly manifested through the choice of name, and by respecting this right we'll afford dignity towards these individuals the best. Cheers! Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 15:53, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Jayaguru-Shishya, perhaps read the Gender, Sex and gender distinction, Third gender, Genderqueer and Gender variance articles and some of their sources; gender is defined in a social context significantly more than it is defined in a biological context, and it commonly is not immutable. Flyer22 (talk) 14:52, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    If I wasn't clear, I generally adhere to the sex and gender distinction, "gender" often means "gender identity," and some transgender people consider being transgender a biological matter while other transgender people don't (or consider it a nature and nurture matter). If you reply to me on this topic, there is no need to WP:Ping me. Flyer22 (talk) 14:58, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Flyer22: Please see my recent post here: [2]. Cheers! Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 15:33, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Noted. Flyer22 (talk) 16:00, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    If names are a juridical matter, would you say that Marilyn Monroe be referred to as Norma Jean Mortenson?? --Alison (Crazytales) (talkedits) 14:15, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    If Norma Jean Mortenson won a gold medal at the 1952 Summer Olympics, the winner's name should not be retroactively changed to "Marilyn Monroe" on Wikipedia to suit fan sensibilities. Same principle. Carrite (talk) 20:19, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    But surely a chart showing gold medalists would be much more informative to the reader if it conveyed that the person they know as Marilyn Monroe was one and the same as the Norma Jean Mortenson who won the medal. Similarly, this list of NBA MVPs relegates to footnotes and links the rather significant fact that the 1970-71 winner, Lew Alcindor, and the 1971-72 winner, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, are in fact the same person. It would give the reader a much more accurate picture of the true history if that were made explicit in the table itself.--Trystan (talk) 03:14, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  23. Oppose in current form. WP:Gender identity explains how names are retroactively changed for trans folks unless the individual specifies otherwise. As mentioned in the discussion below, something like Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner) would be a good compromise as it respects the person's identity while informing readers of the previous name. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:50, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  24. Support - It simply makes the most sense and is least likely to cause confusion. Clarity and accuracy should be our primary goal. -R. fiend (talk) 20:21, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  25. Oppose - this is transphobic as heck. I note the arguments in its favor are often, if I may quote above, "gender (an immutable biological component)", which is purely false. Gender is not immutable. Hell, sex isn't immutable. Also note harm and BLP issues. I also note that people who aren't transgender always get their wishes respected without comment, such as with Prince, or, more infamously, Drake Bell, who insists that he's going to keep referring to Caitlyn as "Bruce" - even though his own birth name is actually not Drake, it's Jared, and yet Wikipedia covers both individuals without comment. I could make a HUGE list here of people who use a different name than their birth name: essentially half of everyone famous changed their name. Exceptions to the use of old names, such as winning awards under another name, can be explained easily without insisting articles about Laverne Cox, Janet Mock, Carmen Carrera, Geena Rocero, Isis King, Gisele Alicea, Leyna Ramous, Dina Marie, Nina Poon, Juliana Huxtable, Niki M'nray, Pêche Di, etc. all insist on using male pronouns and names for them. Right now, Laverne Cox's article states she has an identical twin brother: did that make anyone's head explode? Do we need to go in and explain that they used to be identical twins because? NO. It's incredibly disrespectful; I'm actually outraged at the votes for this policy, and it sure doesn't make anything "more encyclopedic". Ogress smash! 20:48, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  26. Support for sports achievements I think it is more misleading to list medals won etc. as Caitlyn Jenner as opposed to Bruce Jenner. The context of sports is a gender-divided one: nothing can change the fact that Caitlyn Jenner competed in the men's division as a man in her track and field career. Certainly her biography should not refer to her as "he" during this period, as a biography is more of a continuous narrative, rather than the historic one here. I certainly would not consider referring to her as "Bruce Jenner" on Athletics at the 1976 Summer Olympics as offensive without personal statements to the opposite. Probably a more sensitive approach would be to use the name as competed, but avoid the masculine pronoun where possible using a more neutral "Jenner" instead. In the biography I think we should make reference to her having "competed in the men's decathlon", which is a neutral statement of fact that clarifies the gender division yet subtly avoids making any explicit statement about her gender. SFB 21:23, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  27. Support It is misleading to say a female won a male's event in Jenner's case, it is also very confusing at bits for other instances. I feel this should be a case by case basis though. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 01:00, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  28. Support - . When it comes to name changes, we always take historic context into account. For example, Saint Petersburg (Russia) has undergone multiple name changes... and we (correctly) use the most modern one as the title of our article... HOWEVER we maintain the use of it's historic names when discussing the city in historic contexts (for example, when discussing the city during WWII, we talk about the "Siege of Leningrad"... we don't retro-actively "modernize" the name to: "Siege of St. Petersburg"). I understand the need for sensitivity where gender Identity is concerned, but accuracy in historic context is also important. So... in the Jenner case, I would definitely change the title of the Bio article - but I would allow the use of "Bruce" when talking about her in a historic context (such as her athletic carrier)... I would also use "Bruce" in other articles that mention her in a historic context (such as United States at the 1976 Summer Olympics) I think it would be historically inaccurate to "update" the name in those situations. Blueboar (talk) 13:08, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    I'm sorry but that is such innaposite or poor reasoning that I feel constrained to respond, a living person is not a thing - a city is a thing. This living person known then as X and now Y is not in the least innaccurate. Alanscottwalker (talk) 14:00, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Then let's take the example that is about a living person ... let's look at a woman athlete who, subsequent to her athletic career, changed her name. Look at Karyn Bye-Dietz. The bio article correctly uses her current married name (appropriate because that is her current name) but our article on United States at the 2002 Winter Olympics lists her by her historic name (ie her maiden name) in the team roster for the Woman's Ice Hockey team (appropriate because that was the name she had when she was on the team). In other words, we use historic names of living people when discussing those people in historic contexts. Blueboar (talk) 12:39, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
    That still makes no sense as a blanket rule. When discussing living people, it surely makes no sense to assume by rule they are historic things because they most certainly are not. We just cannot treat the widely commented upon and the not widely commented upon, or the controversial and the uncontroversial, or the usual and the unusual in exactly the same way everywhere, as that's so far from what writing an encyclopedia is about - to reflect the actual complexity of things as much as possible. The desire of some here to put their editing preference in a particular article into a general rule is bad for articles and bad for the encyclopedia. Alanscottwalker (talk) 13:18, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  29. Support use of facts at the time rather than preferences afterwards. -- Necrothesp (talk) 13:56, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  30. Support While a person can change who they are, that does not make the past change. We should describe things as they happened at the time. Chillum 18:10, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  31. Oppose I really don't see why this is necessary, and it seems to me that it basically invalidates people's identities. Cam94509 (talk) 18:28, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  32. Overwhelmingly support – Any other option smacks of pure "historical revisionism". And that's true, whether it's names of people, places, or things. --IJBall (talk) 20:01, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  33. Strongly oppose. The MOS is clear that whatever identity the person adopts should be used for every phase of their life. The guidelines couldn't be clearer. Liz Read! Talk! 21:25, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    The guideline says specifically says "pronouns, possessive adjectives, and gendered nouns". It says nothing about name. --Escape Orbit (Talk) 17:07, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  34. Support: Despite the shortcomings of MOS:IDENTITY, you can't erase the past. Life is a continuum. The Dissident Aggressor 22:13, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  35. Support: With the former name link working as a redirect, this sounds like the most practical option. If the person in question objects, I'd then support option 4. --Waldir talk 10:10, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  36. Support. Simply because the other options so poor. Kendall Jenner was not born to Caitlyn Jenner and Kris Jenner, because Caitlyn Jenner did not exist at the time. So Option 2 is historical revisionism and leaves the reader with more unanswered questions than answers. Option 3 is confusing (she was born to Caitlyn and then a second time to Bruce??) and Option 4 seems like a distracting tangent taking the reader off the article topic into someone else's life-story. Caitlyn's identity is fully recognised in her own article, that is her right. But why should anyone have the right to re-write history? --Escape Orbit (Talk) 17:02, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  37. Support As others have pointed out, it makes very little sense to list Caitlyn as having won a men's event, but there are other issues. One editor is running around changing all instances of "Bruce" to "Caitlyn" citing MOS:IDENTITY (see example). I asked about this at WT:TV and a suggestion was to use "Caitlyn Jenner (credited as Bruce Jenner)". The problem with this is that at the time it was "Bruce Jenner (credited as Bruce Jenner)". Retroactively changing all occurrences of "Bruce" to "Caitlyn" is effectively changing history, like saying that American astronauts planted six international flags of surrender on the moon simply because the stars and stripes have now faded. Jenner has decided to identify as Caitlyn now, but does Caitlyn deny she was ever Bruce? It's fine to use the present name in the BLP but outside, we should be using what is verifiably correct back whenever, especially when it applies to something like 34-year-old episodes when Caitlyn Jenner did not exist. --AussieLegend () 20:55, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  38. Support - Take the activism elsewhere. Records are historic and changing names on them to suit self-righteous sensibilities is anachronistic and makes us look silly, both. Carrite (talk) 00:59, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    Support - past accomplishments were awarded to Bruce Jenner. It makes the most sense to keep those events surrounding Bruce Jenner with Bruce Jenner's name. We can redirect to Caitlyn Jenner. Inks.LWC (talk) 04:12, 5 June 2015 (UTC) Apparently I !voted twice (I guess I forgot I came here the first time). My second !vote was lengthier and sums up my thoughts better than this one; I have kept that support !vote below, unstruck. Inks.LWC (talk) 02:01, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  39. Oppose - A trans person on here will have being trans associated with their past. It makes no sense deny a trans person's identity across their entire past until they come out. It's a serious breach of respect. Gwenhope (talk) 07:01, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  40. Oppose - It's important to note that most often, a subject will be referred to with their surname as pretext for a sentence. And on the issue of pronouns, only confusion and inconsistency comes from mixing it up. Wikipedia should be easily read and understood. These things can be dealt with in the lead. Glitchygirl (talk) 10:56, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  41. Support Historical accomplishments should be attributed to the name in the historical records, that is what is verifiable. This is not just for this specific case but for all cases. We should not be rewriting history, but reporting things as they happened. -- GB fan 11:53, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    So basically you are saying that transgender people have no right to be credited by current name for their past accomplishments? They are to be ghettoized and have their accomplishments stripped from them simply because they changed their gender? Perhaps we should do the same to people who convert to Judaism. Or for black people. huh? Skyerise (talk) 12:01, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    No I am not saying that transgender people should have their accomplishments stripped from them. Their accomplishments are their accomplishments no matter what their current name. Their previous name should be retained for their previous accomplishments and their new name should be for all new accomplishments, that is what the reliable sources say and so should we. The same should be done for people who convert to a different religion. Let's say a Catholic priest converted to Judaism, we wouldn't say he was a Jew when he was a catholic priest. As far as black people, no one changes their ethnicity/color of their skin so I do not know what that has to do with this conversation at all. -- GB fan 12:27, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    So I'm sure you've taken the time to look into this deeply, read the psychological studies about the emotional harm and suffering that transgender people go through and which continues after transition when people insist on using their "real" name, and that because of this most major style guides have decided that they should always be referred to by their new name. And yes, to a lesser degree, we should respect anybody's name change. All it takes is an additional citation. But I guess that's too much work for you to respect people's current identities. Skyerise (talk) 13:14, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    I completely respect everyone's current identity, just like I completely respect their historical identity. -- GB fan 13:48, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  42. Oppose this retrograde nonsense. Protonk (talk) 13:06, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  43. Oppose. Protonk captures my feelings well (although I'd probably add more frustrated monosyllabic noises). Ironholds (talk) 13:26, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  44. Strongest possible oppose. Per Protonk and the current MOS:IDENTITY. This doesn't "clarify" MOS:IDENTITY, it regresses it. --Alison (Crazytales) (talkedits) 14:15, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  45. Support. Seems to me the difficulties encountered in Caitlyn Jenner point to serious problems with MOS:IDENTITY. In both Jenner's Olympic record and marriages, the encyclopedic narrative gets blurred. There's no perfect answer here: we are bumping into the limitations of the language. But I think that, as a general rule, staying with the historical gender allows Wikipedia to be more faithful to the contemporary references we rely on. Barte (talk) 16:00, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    Oh yeah, it's way too difficult to add a second reference for the name change. Sorry to put you through so much bother to be respectful to other people. Skyerise (talk) 16:02, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    More faithful to the references? Because, what, the reference might have the wrong name? Like we had this conversation for Prince. Ironholds (talk) 16:36, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  46. Support per the several comments above of Wikimandia, War Wizard90, Fyunck, Trackinfo and MrX: this is a simple matter of historical accuracy. Retroactively renaming/regendering a person who has lived, worked and competed as a man for 65 years -- and for 40 of those years as a very prominent public figure -- is the worst kind of historical revisionism, and begins to take on unintended comical aspects when we attempt to re-write history based on an ideologically-driven public awareness campaign. I am all for acknowledging the present reality of Jenner's gender identity with a measure of compassion and sensitivity, but we must also acknowledge the historical reality that existed for most of the last 65 years. Doing otherwise is simply not factually accurate, and the idea of rewriting Wikipedia sports articles to suggest that Caitlyn Jenner won the Olympic gold medal in the men 's decathlon in 1976 is nothing less than bizarre. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 16:56, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  47. Support. We really can't say Caitlyn competed in the men's decathlon or that she was married to Kris Jenner, because both are false. But than again, I'm a male sports fan. Calidum T|C 17:23, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Calidum: Please explain in what way they are false. Are you saying that Bruce and Caitlyn are not the same person? A person won a decathlon and a person married. "Caitlyn Jenner" is a name that references that person and, at least on Wikipedia, is unique. So yes, the individual now named Caitlyn, the same individual, did those things. Why would a name be more important than personhood? Skyerise (talk) 20:29, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  48. Support I'm afraid that many editors care more about a specific POV and are using this issue as a means of advocacy. What is important is to write articles that are sourced and readable. Using a specific gender thoughtful articles to please activists is a disservice to the reader. Taking into account the timeline of transition (which this option does) is the only way to not confuse the reader. If the activists are offended by this, well tough shit. (talk) 19:16, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    If you think our readers are genuinely so incapable of thought that they couldn't understand the very rudimentary elements of gender transitions, it's you doing the disservice. People seem to be talking a lot about how this is "POV activism": if treating our subjects with human decency and respect is "POV", something is very wrong with what we consider neutrality. Ironholds (talk) 15:31, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  49. ***If you think the jarring pronoun usage employed in this article is comprehensible, then you should find a new hobby as you're a detriment to the project. (talk) 22:24, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  50. Support - either this or option 3 (I think the person's chosen name and gender should be used, but possibly, in very unusual cases - such as in the case of winning an Olympic medal - the previous name can be denoted. TMagen (talk) 16:52, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  51. Support - for historical events. The source for the 1976 Summer Olympics decathalon says "Bruce Jenner", not "Caitlyn Jenner", so to change this from "Bruce" to "Caitlyn" violates WP:V and WP:SYNTHESIS. Until we have a source that says that Caitlyn Jenner won the 1976 decathalon, it is synthesis to take one source that uses Bruce Jenner as the winner and another source that says that Bruce Jenner identifies now as Caitlyn Jenner and then take those two sources to mean that Caitlyn Jenner won the decathalon. Inks.LWC (talk) 18:33, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    The suggestion that changing "Bruce" to "Caitlyn" (or changing other trans peoples' names) violates SYNTH and/or V has been made before, but is controversial and AFAICT not widely-held. Compare our articles on various chemicals, where sources saying "H2SO4" or "sulphuric acid" has a certain property are routinely cited in support of statements that "sulfuric acid has [such-and-such property]". -sche (talk) 20:44, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    I see no issue with SYNTH there, because the article would not be reaching a conclusion not explicitly stated by the sources. In those sources, H2SO4 is the same thing as sulphuric acid. In the articles regarding Jenner's accomplishments, they were written before Jenner identified as Caitlyn. In chemistry articles, H2SO4 was identified as sulphuric acid when the article was written; the same is not true of articles written about Jenner pre-transition. Inks.LWC (talk) 21:41, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  52. Support People in Wikipedia are notable and if there history is covered in Wikipedia it's generally notable and public. Jenner's transition is very public and virtually all of her public life has been portrayed as male to the public. We cannot rewrite history. Jenner's movie and TV credits will not be updated. Jenner was male when competing in the Olympics. There's no indication that Jenner wishes to separate her public life as "Bruce" from her public life as "Caitlyn." Sensitivities to deadnaming may not even be wanted or applicable to Jenner as she has chosen to transition in a very public way and her fame as "Bruce" is certainly a part of the notability of her transition. We should not be scrubbing her history as if being "Bruce" was shameful or hurtful. It is much more confusing to have names that don't match credits in media or history books. --DHeyward (talk) 10:25, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  53. Oppose. This would introduce a practice of misgendering into Wikipedia policy, which would be transphobic. The gender assignment done to a person by anonymous health personnel at their birth is no more valid (but rather less valid) than the gender identity a person chooses for themselves. And I find the term "historical gender" patronising and ridiculous. A transgender person has only one gender and that is the one that they say they have. Using outdated pronouns or names and inventing terms like "historical gender" take away transgender people's right to define themselves. - MellowMurmur (talk | contributions) 20:33, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  54. Mild Support Let's not introduce unnecessary anachronism. I don't see anything transphobic or discriminatory, when talking about past events, about mentioning the persona that the transgender person assumed publicly and socially at the time. It's a whole different matter than in an article where this person is the main topic, as many discussions here have established. Option 4 is descriptive and correct enough though. Place Clichy (talk) 12:09, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  55. Support - Caitlyn Jenner did not exist prior to the publishing of the Vanity Fair article. The former Bruce Jenner article is now correctly titled Caitlyn Jenner, and deals with the subject appropriately. All references in the future should refer to this individual as Caitlyn, and use the appropriate terms her/she, etc. Prior to this year, all references should reflect the accuracy of the history, that Bruce Jenner existed and accomplished those things under that name. I would oppose any of the other 3 alternatives. Onel5969 (talk) 17:42, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
    Caitlyn Jenner has been in existence since October 28, 1949. She went by a different name publicly until a few days ago, but she was still the same continuous person. It is not historically inaccurate to credit the same continuous person under a different name, though per Options 3 and 4, it makes sense to me to include both names for clarity (but only because she was already publicly notable under her previous name). Funcrunch (talk) 20:04, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  56. Support Stick with what the references say and don't try to revise historical info. As for this being "offensive", so what. WP:NOTCENSORED applies here. There is a lot of stuff on wiki that is offensive some group or other, some stuff is personally offensive to me, and we have chosen to ignore those concerns when a valid encyclopedic goal is being met. Geraldo Perez (talk) 22:34, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  57. Support Caitlyn didn't win the decathlon -- Bruce did. It's fine to have a footnote indicating the gender transition and name change, but to suggest that "Caitlyn Jenner" won an Olympic gold medal in 1976 is simply not what happened. I don't see what's so hard about this -- when Caitlyn was Bruce, refer to her as Bruce (that's who she was at the time). To say that Caitlyn won the decathlon is as silly as saying that Bruce is being presented a special Espy for bravery. It's just not how it happened. (talk) 23:37, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  58. Oppose. The other options would be preferable. Weakening MOS:IDENTITY like this opens the door to wikilawyering from trolls who insist on misgendering people. The status quo version has issues, of course, but they can be resolved through options 3 and 4. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 05:24, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  59. Support for sports achievements per the argument made by Sillyfolkboy above. Sideways713 (talk) 10:06, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
  60. Support especially for sports achievements, per Knowledgekid87 and SFB (Sillyfolkboy) above. —Wasell(T) 12:18, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
  61. Support for sports achievements Jenner, as a man, won the Olympic medals in the men's category, and in retrospect saying that a woman won those events is historically and factually inaccurate. Randy Kryn 12:32, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
  62. Oppose This option, which fails to even acknowledge the name the person has chosen after transitioning, is not consistent with the "high degree of sensitivity" mandated by BLP. Gender identity is a matter where this sensitivity is particularly important, considering the history of discrimination, prejudice and non-recognition that the trans* community has suffered. Neljack (talk) 07:43, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
  63. Oppose using only historic name without reference being made to newly chosen designation.
    Where possible also oppose the making of any reference to gender where possible which may raise confusion for readers many of whom will have come to an encyclopedia article on a sporting event so as to read about that sporting event. Why say either she or he when "Jenner" is would be sufficient in most if not all cases. We are dealing with a person here and one who, while identifying as a female, was seemingly comfortable with the use of the male pronoun in the early June interview. GregKaye 14:55, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
  64. Oppose using only the historical name; we should use both names. Even aside from the issue of respecting their choice, this could easily cause confusion when eg. someone searches for information about them using their current name. --Aquillion (talk) 07:09, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  65. Support, to preserve the historic record. The name and identity of the person at the time iscussed are simply facts, we must clearly report those. Using both names would be acceptable in some cases. DES (talk) 12:02, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  66. Oppose Per BLP and MOS:IDENTITY. Misgendering in general is highly insulting not only to the individual in question but also to all others in similar situations. Further this doesn't seem to match what is done in other cases of name changes based on the comments others have made about Muhammad Ali for example below. PaleAqua (talk) 17:16, 21 June 2015 (UTC)
  67. Support to preserve history accurately, and not confuse readers.Godsy(TALKCONT) 03:29, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
  68. Support This is an encyclopedia and the facts should be presented accurately. As a reader above mentioned, we wouldn't call the Battle of Stalingrad the "Battle of Volgograd"...we use the historic name. If someone was known as one name for a particular event or at a particular time, that is the name that should be used. AHeneen (talk) 22:04, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
  69. Support We should be writing about what actually happened. This is in keeping with the wishes of our current test case, and I don't see how anyone else in such a situation would take offense. DPRoberts534 (talk) 05:28, 28 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 2 (use most recent gender across all Wikipedia articles)[edit]

  1. Support. This is the current consensus per MOS:IDENTITY, which has been thoroughly discused to its current form (search for 'identity' at the MOS archives for many of the arguments held in the Support section which have already been addressed). Diego (talk) 09:17, 2 June 2015 (UTC) - Moved to Option 4. Diego (talk) 13:44, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. Oppose. Deal with it on a case-by-case basis. There are many places where MOS:IDENTITY is guaranteed to be confusing. Epic Genius (talk) 16:32, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support - this is basically policy; MOS:IDENTITY specifies that we use the current gender identity throughout the article. The subject's preference overrides any and all arguments. Skyerise (talk) 16:52, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Note: MOS:IDENTITY is not yet a policy; it's a guideline. I'm not sure it will be policy in the future. Flyer22 (talk) 14:25, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. generally support as current policy. But there are places where the gender change will need to be made clear in articles outside of the subject themselves. the case of the Caitlyn /Bruce - Kris Janner marriage for example. We run into BLP issues from both parties involved. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 19:49, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Support - it's incredibly transphobic not to use the preferred pronouns and name of the individual. No one blinks at calling Prince "Prince". There are only a limited series of spaces where the individual's birth gender or name need be indicated, and those would be specific exceptions. BLP is a big issue here, but it's not the only place it would be an issue. Ogress smash! 20:33, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  6. Oppose. Per my comments above, that goes against what the sources said at the time. Going against what is reported in sources is a key wikipedia principle that should not be violated. It is essentially wikipedia rewriting history. Trackinfo (talk) 21:07, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  7. Oppose. Many media houses preserve historic gender and name when discussing a trans person's past. Wikipedia does not need to blaze a new trail in this regard. Binksternet (talk) 23:00, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  8. Oppose. I am with Binksternet on this one, we aren't here to break barriers we are here to write an encyclopedia. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 01:07, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  9. Support The only situation this causes problems with is when the subject waffles on whether they're transitioning or not, in which case it could turn into a chore constantly updating 'all references to the subject in every article to be consistent with their current wishes. But I think that would be the exception, and were it to become an issue... WP:IAR. —Locke Coletc 02:27, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  10. Oppose. Links to past articles should remain Bruce, or say Caitlyn, then known as Bruce Jenner. --Frmorrison (talk) 16:53, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  11. Support This is really the only way of looking at this that doesn't wind up being super invalidating, and is in line with previous consensus. Cam94509 (talk) 18:30, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  12. Oppose: Per binksternet. Take your activisim elsewhere. This is an encyclopedia. The Dissident Aggressor 22:13, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  13. Oppose - we shouldn't be re-writing history or using sources that aren't there. Fyunck(click) (talk) 23:12, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  14. Oppose - The Decathlon was won by a man named Bruce, the same man who married Kris Jenner. The fact that he wants to be called "Caitlyn" now does not change historical facts. Bobby Martnen (talk) 02:18, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Bobby Martnen, the decathlon was not won by a name, it was won by a person That person is still living and has taken a new name. Are you denying that the person now known as Caitlyn won the decathlon? Are you denying their right to change their name? Or do you think "names" are more important than "persons"? Do you think a person should be denied being properly credited for their past accomplishments just because they changed their name? Or because they changed their gender? Or does the fact that she's now female squick you out and you'd rather not see it in articles you work on? No accusations here, just questions. Skyerise (talk) 19:38, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    the decathlon was not won by a name, it was won by a person More specifically, it was won by a person named Bruce, not by a person named Caitlyn and the name is important. That the person may have changed their name is irrelevant. I doubt Caitlyn Jenner can drive on Bruce Jenner's driver's license or travel on Bruce Jenner's passport and if Caitlyn Jenner was claiming she won the decathlon she'd have to prove that she was Bruce Jenner. --AussieLegend () 14:06, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    Actually it is quite common for trans people to use drivers licenses and passports with their previous names on them for a period of time after beginning to use a new name, as there is a lot of paperwork and time involved; each agency has different requirements. I don't know if Caitlyn has changed any of her identity documents yet. But it hardly seems relevant to the discussion of whether to list her current name in a Wikipedia article that links to her biography which explains her gender transition. Funcrunch (talk) 16:01, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  15. Oppose - An over-the-top, extremist misreading of the MOS suggestions. Carrite (talk) 01:03, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  16. Support and suggest a couple of the people opposing read the discretionary sanctions in this area before hitting "save" again. Ironholds (talk) 01:57, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  17. Oppose - a blanket ban will produce situations where Wikipedia contains nonsensical or misleading statements. --Carnildo (talk) 02:54, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  18. Support - It's an issue of respect and simply that. A trans person's wikipedia article will have their transgender nature included. That clears up all the other issues (such as people listed as X gender having won Y gender's event, etc. etc.) Gwenhope (talk) 07:01, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  19. Support - MOS:IDENTITY reads like a guideline already grounded on the consideration of gender theory, e.g. just as with sexual orientation, gender identity was developed in the womb separate from the body. One wouldn't postulate that a gay man or woman chose to be this way; they must have always been. It's the same with trans people. As long as we point out the exact date of coming out in the lead—Prior to June 2015, Caitlyn Jenner was referred to as Bruce Jenner—there won't be any confusion. Glitchygirl (talk) 10:04, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  20. Support as within the spirit of the current MOS:IDENTITY. I'm not quite sure how to handle the supposed thorny BLP issues with implying that Kris Jenner was in a lesbian marriage. I think that Caitlyn being trans and (at least publicly) identifying as male during their marriage is pretty common knowledge; I can't see how a commonsensical reading of anything around Kris and Caitlyn's marriage would be construed as Kris being in a lesbian marriage. --Alison (Crazytales) (talkedits) 14:25, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  21. Oppose for the reasons of historical accuracy which I expressed under Option 1 above. When someone has been a prominent public figure as a man, we should not attempt to rewrite history to reflect later transgender revelations. We can and should acknowledge the present reality of Jenner's gender identity with compassion and sensitivity, but rewriting 65 years of the personal gender history of a prominent public figure is almost Orwellian in character. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 17:06, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  22. Oppose This standard appeals to activists who claim (without any merit) that misgendering a subject in an earlier phase of life harms all Trans people. That it bothers the activist is no concern of ours. Writing comprehensive articles is the only concern. (talk) 19:24, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  23. Support: As a transgender person myself, I hate being called by my birth name. Charlotte Allison (Allen/Morriswa) (talk) 20:54, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  24. *This of course has zero validity, unless you are Jenner. I fail to see how a few Trans people's personal preferences are used as the basis for a policy. (talk) 01:22, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
      • Probably because most trans people are in agreement on this topic. Easily verifiable on the internet and at Deadname. 03:02, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
        • Jenner answered the queston for her in the Vanity Fair article Bissinger apologizes to Jenner for repeated pronoun confusion and asks whether she is sensitive about it. “I don’t really get hung up,” she tells him. “A guy came in the other day and I was fully dressed—it’s just habit, I said, ‘Hi, Bruce here,’ and I went, Oh fuck, it ain’t Bruce, I was screwing up doing it.” Different strokes. The biggest difference with Jenner and most other people (not just transgender people) is fame and celebrity status for 40 years prior to transition. She chose to publicly transition in way that isn't available to hardly anyone. Also, celebrities manage their image. It was true before her transition and it is true after. Virtually everyone doesn't know Jenner any more after her transition than before her transition unless they are personal friends or family. --DHeyward (talk) 09:04, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
      • Now discarding someone's opinion because they are transgender is out of line, although that's not exactly what you wrote. Note that the discussion here is a general one, not about Jenner. Place Clichy (talk) 18:03, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  25. **** No, that would be sn ad hominem attack. But the flip side is "I is trans" is an appeal to authority, as if trans opinions should have more weight. They don't. (talk) 22:12, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  26. Oppose We shouldn't be changing history. --AussieLegend () 14:16, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    @AussieLegend: presumably your next edits will be to rename the crap out of things at the article on Prince (musician) hmn? Ironholds (talk) 15:29, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    No, because that is the BLP and this discussion is about MOS:IDENTITY's application outside the BLP. --AussieLegend () 15:37, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    @AussieLegend: So the album articles, then? I note that The Black Album (Prince album) currently describes itself as " the sixteenth studio album by American recording artist Prince" - this is ludicrous! It's rewriting history! He wasn't called Prince at the time! Why aren't you fixing it? Ironholds (talk) 15:41, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    There's a practical issue there. You can't really call him "unpronounceable squiggle" in the article. That's certainly an issue where things have to be handled on a case by case basis. --AussieLegend () 15:52, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    There's no such thing as "outside the BLP" in Wikipedia. The BLP policy applies to all articles and non-article spaces, everywhere in the project. Diego (talk) 17:44, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    If you read the discussion again you'll see here that BLP refers to the subjects biographical article. --AussieLegend () 12:43, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
    If you read the policy on which MOS:IDENTITY is based, you'll see that whether the content is located or not in the biography article is irrelevant to the protections WP:BLP provides. The reasons why MOS:IDENTITY is written that way do not dissappear when you move to a different article. Diego (talk) 12:50, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  27. Oppose. Deal with it on a case-by-case basis. Even if facts are offensive, they are still facts. We recognize more recent changes by acknowledging the current state, not by pretending that history was different than it was. Being deliberately offensive is wrong. Publishing false information is wrong as well. Jacona (talk) 15:54, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  28. Support this as my first choice, especially in articles that mention someone who subsequently became notable but who was not notable at the time the article is concerned with. For example (using a non-trans example): someone made the point (apparently in another discussion which has since been archived, or perhaps on WT:MOS) that Michelle Obama's article says things like "Obama attended Whitney Young High School, Chicago's first magnet high school", and Whitney M. Young Magnet High School's article mentions "Michelle Obama" among its alums, even though she wasn't "Michelle Obama" at the time she attended the school. For articles that mention someone who is now known under name Y, but who was notable under name X at the time the article was concerned with (like articles that mention Jenner's Olympic performances), I concede that using only the current name could be less clear than either of the options I have voted on below as my second and third choice options. -sche (talk) 17:58, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    Then this would also work in the theoretical since precedent is being set. If 20 years from now, former president Barak Obama remarries and decides to take his wife's legal name of Snickley, we would have to go back and change all references of the 44th president of the United States to President Barak Snickley. Sorry but I'm not ok with that. President Snickley pushed through Obamacare/Snickleycare? President Snickley was the first black President? Or other choices, even if mentioned in the article 100 times, every occurrence would be "President Snickley (President Obama)". Fyunck(click) (talk) 20:05, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  29. Support. Doing anything but this would constitute misgendering. The gender assignment done to a person by anonymous health personnel at their birth is no more valid (but rather less valid) than the gender identity a person chooses for themselves. And I find the term "historical gender" patronising and ridiculous. A transgender person has only one gender and that is the one that they say they have. Using outdated pronouns or names and inventing terms like "historical gender" take away transgender people's right to define themselves. - MellowMurmur (talk | contributions) 20:33, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  30. Oppose It will depend on the person. From GLAAD media guide -> "Unless a former name is newsworthy or pertinent, use the name and pronouns preferred....". In the case of Jenner, winning the Men's Decathlon as "Bruce Jenner" created her notability and both name and gender are newsworthy and pertinent. Articles that refer to Jenner's olympic achievement and are written historically should use the name and pronouns that are the most comprehensible to our reader. We should not have asterisks, parentheticals, explanations, (i.e. "as Bruce") etc, etc, to explain a transition which is not relevant to the notable historical event or use pronouns that would require such an explanation such as "she won the Men's Decathlon." The whole concept of "respecting the person" is thrown out the window when the focus of every achievement is solely viewed through theitr transition. The wikipedia articles mentioning Jenner are starting to read like "Psst, she's transgender" at every reference to their accomplishments which seems to be the result of activism without regard for the person. --DHeyward (talk) 08:38, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
    From a purely encyclopedic aspect, the fact that a woman won a male-specific category seems particularly relevant to the granting of the award. The explanation of how that happened (that the woman at hand is transgender, and was publicly standing as male at the time) requires more clarification than a mere psst, in my humble opinion - and certainly more than total silence or an unexplained redirect. Diego (talk) 10:06, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  31. Oppose per anachronism. Next we know, the Republic of Turkey was defeated in World War I, Napoleon invaded the Soviet Union, and Christopher Columbus discovered the United States. Place Clichy (talk) 12:09, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  32. Oppose. Revisionism, writing things directly at odds with the primary sources, is not scholarship. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 12:15, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  33. Oppose. Revisionism. We have sources for the info, stick with what they say. Geraldo Perez (talk) 22:40, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  34. Comment make use of current name in tandum with previous name where practical and where it doesn't conflict with another BLP. Avoid using gender pronouns using surname where practical. GregKaye 15:29, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
  35. Generally oppose using only the new name. I'm divided on this one, since I think it's context-sensitive, but in general in historical contexts it seems to me that there's a good chance that people will come to the article knowing or searching for their old name; if we don't include a clarification, they could be confused if they don't find it. However, the old name could be omitted in cases where it's unlikely that they have any particular fame under that name (eg. if for some reason an article is discussing them before they were famous, mentioning their old name might be unnecessary.) --Aquillion (talk) 07:12, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  36. Strongly Oppose This simply blurs, distorts, or even falsifies history. The name, identity, and gender that were in effect at the time being discussed in an article are facts of history. To omit or change them is out-and-out wrong. Acknowledging the new name and identity also is another matter. DES (talk) 12:11, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  37. Strongly Support I'm not sure why this is such a big issue. If Jenner had changed her last name, then it would have absolutely appropriate to make retroactive edits. I don't see how this is any different than a change in her gender identity and first name. While we are on the topic, somebody definitely needs to change her picture at the top of the page! It is nothing short of ridiculous that a dated picture is still up there, given that she has made such a dramatic change in appearance. I know this has been recently changed, and I think it is disrespectful that the editor did not use a picture of Jenner as female-presenting. ralevudwu (talk) 10:10, 02 July 2015 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
This "un-option" has been superseded by Option 5, below

Oppose both[edit]

  1. First of all, it has to be a bad idea to say we need a policy rule now to deal with this one subject's emergency case. We should approach this on a case by case basis in various dispute resolution forums, if need be, before we jump to straight-jacket policy provisions, in that way experience will guide consensus, and perhaps down the road we may make a reflective policy. Alanscottwalker (talk) 19:40, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    We have a policy; it's MOS:IDENTITY. Oddly enough Wikipedia has included articles about transgender individuals before this. Ironholds (talk) 01:56, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    Sure we have, and we don't need new policy, for all articles because some want a Jenner rule. Alanscottwalker (talk) 22:45, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Ironholds: MOS:IDENTITY is only a guideline, it's NOT a policy. WP:V is a policy. --AussieLegend () 14:13, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    There's no need to use EXTRANEOUS CAPS LOCK. WP:V is indeed a policy! WP:BLP is also a policy. One of those two is associated with a Board of Trustees mandate to treat article subjects with respect and human decency; guess which? Ironholds (talk) 15:28, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    This isn't about WP:BLP, it's about the applicability of a guideline. --AussieLegend () 15:41, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    It's absolutely about WP:BLP, which mandates treating subjects with respect, when you start arguing that we have to rely on the old details because verifiability is The Most Important Thing. In BLPs, verifiability is not the most important thing. Ironholds (talk) 17:29, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    No, we're not talking about BLP. We're specifically discussing how this guideline should be applied. The outcome of this discussion will have absolutely no effect on WP:BLP or how it is applied. --AussieLegend () 09:16, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
    Yes, it's about BLP. Basically, it would be changing the combined effect of MOS:IDENTITY and BLP from saying that we must treat all living subjects respectfully to saying that we must treat all living subjects respectfully except transgender people, authorizing transphobes to deadname and misgender them, things which are known to be emotionally harmful to transgender subjects. How is that not a BLP issue? Skyerise (talk) 15:44, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
    But it's not about WP:BLP. MOS:IDENTITY is a guideline extraneous to WP:BLP, which doesn't even mention it. Your argument that the combined effect would be "except transgender people" is absolutely incorrect. Transgender people will be treated with the same respect as anyone else, but without denying history. You have, for example, absolutely no evidence that Jenner wants now to be referred to as Caitlyn for past achievements. That's merely your assumption and you're making the decision for Jenner without considering her personal preference. That's incredibly disrespectful. --AussieLegend () 16:03, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
I think your rationale is quite offensive, harmful and irrespecive against trans-people, Skyerise. Jenner gained his merits in the field of sports as a male, and now without even asking, you'd like to change that? Have you ever considered that gender identity might not be an on/off switch? Jenner, indeed, might have achieved a lot while still cherishing his male gender idenity, and only later had the urge to change his gender, Caitlyn, as nowadays we call her. We should respect that and not look down on the person's identity in play. Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 19:23, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  1. Disagree. We simply have to make the choice that causes the "least harm". The harm of deadnaming is documented. Applying BLP would say that we do not deadname unless the subject has specifically said they want to be identified by past name and gender pre-transition. Jenner has not issue such a statement. Skyerise (talk) 16:15, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
    Who are you to say that this does no harm? Jenner might be proud of past achievements regardless of the name. She might see the recent name change as an achievement in itself, she may even want to keep the the old records as they are. The point is that you don't know and arbitrarily making decisions for people when they haven't asked you to is grossly disrespectful, as well as violating WP:NPOV. Your decision to decide what Jenner wants without asking her may be doing immense harm. --AussieLegend () 16:24, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
    Since when did we get out of the encyclopedia business and start judging harm in relation to factual information? If some dude is convicted of murder we certainly say so even if he claims he didn't do it and it hurts him emotionally to read about it. We simply go with sources regardless. Fyunck(click) (talk) 16:46, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
    In the cases of interaction with others, misrepresenting the gender of one, then misrepresents the gender identification of all others involved. Certainly that is a violation of WP:BLP. In Jenner's case, saying his three wives married a woman, his six children were fathered by a woman, and in the mis-representation of Jenner's athletic performances, are some are using the MOS:IDENTITY guideline to claim (in Wikipedia's voice) that Jenner surpassed and preceded many women's athletic performances, thus denying each of other the women who achieved their record setting performances their position of notability. That is a giant snowball of individuals potentially displaced or offended by people using MOS:IDENTITY to rewrite history. I'm also going to say for the record. This is not about transphobia, it is about accurately reflecting history. But that term is getting thrown around, including at me. While my own reputation is not subject to BLP, I'm certainly offended at the base level of name calling that is part of this argument. Stick to the facts. Trackinfo (talk) 17:17, 7 June 2015 (UTC)


From GLAAD media guide -> "Unless a former name is newsworthy or pertinent, use the name and pronouns preferred...." For someone like Jenner where, who in 1976 won a gold medal in the "Men's Decathlon" and the name "Bruce Jenner" is well-known throughout the U.S. as one of the greatest Olympians of all time, both the name and gender are newsworthy and pertinent. It is true that we try to do the least harm and articles in present tense should not be written with wrong names or gender. To the extent that deadnaming is harmful, we should limit it to places where it is newsworthy or pertinent such as in the articles regarding notable historic events. What we should also call out as harmful is the parenthetical/asterisk/"pssst" campaign to make sure that Jenner's transition is mentioned as far and as wide as possible by misusing pronouns such as "she" when discussing the "Men's Decathlon" or deliberately calling out the name in the source and also the chosen name in articles that cover 40 years (such as "Caitlyn Jenner (as Bruce Jenner)" in the olympic articles. These actions don't represent a "minimal harm" activity, they represent an activist approach to making gender transition the only relevant fact in Jenner's life extraordinary life. These activities don't reduce deadnaming and don't reduce harm. Instead, they shrink the person's lifetime of accomplishments into a whisper that sounds like "pssst...she's transgender. did I mention she's transgender? you should know she's transgender" at every turn. That's harmful and counter to the objective of doing the least harm. --DHeyward (talk) 09:44, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
DHeyward I have similar views as you have presented above and wondered how you would view a proposal, where ever possible, to refer to Jenner as "Jenner" where practical in instances in which a personal pronoun might otherwise be used. GregKaye 15:33, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
That's fine except it's often difficult in a narrative. I'd prefer narratives that are present tense first. In credits and tables, though, the sources aren't changing. For example, the credits in all the kardashian episodes are "Bruce Jenner as Himself." That won't be updated by the producers and creates a quandary for sourcing and I'd rather just see the historical credit as it appears on the show with the correct wikilink back to Caitlyn Jenner. There's nothing we can do about the credits that show up in the films, records, shows, etc. How do we deal with that case? "Caitlyn Jenner as Herself (credited as Bruce Jenner as Himself)" or even "Caitlyn Jenner as Bruce Jenner" is just too much and doesn't do a thing to reduce the use of the deadname and gender identification because it's a permanent fixture of the episode - mixing names and gender calls even more attention to the deadname and gender. I'd prefer not making a big deal out of it and she is certainly aware that all the credits and memorabilia use her previous name. She's not abandoning her old name and life as much as embracing her new one and this is apparent in her childrens use of "dad" to refer to her. the gender connotation is less than the historic value as a term of endearment. We seem to be losing sight of how she is reacting in order to fit a preconceived idea of how to treat every single transgender person. --DHeyward (talk) 23:01, 13 June 2015 (UTC)

The above discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section.

Option 3 (use both names, current name first)[edit]

  1. Support - Seems like a good compromise that respects the person's identity but informs readers of the historic name. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 20:33, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. Oppose having the Olympic records say "Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner)" is a terrible idea. He won them as Bruce Jenner but now she is Caitlyn Jenner. Fyunck(click) (talk) 20:46, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Yes, both names with the then-current name first keeps things in the correct time context, which sounds more natural, while acknowledging and showing respect for the change. It's the sensible middle solution. This is what I suggested in my Option 1 !vote, and I don't think we need an Option 4 to cover that solution. ―Mandruss  21:00, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Mandruss: So previous name first, current name in parentheses? That would work too. Honestly I think a 4th option like that would be better than having people who like that idea peppered through option 1. When this many folks are commenting, keeping things clear is useful imho. I'll make a fourth option unless someone strongly disagrees. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 21:46, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    @EvergreenFir: Yes, "Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)". Which will read better and without the linking problems of "Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner", by the way. I'm all for an Option 4 if you want to do it. ―Mandruss  21:51, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Mandruss: Done! EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 22:08, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    (edit conflict)@Fyunck(click): Do you mean like Cassius Clay oops I mean Muhammad Ali and Lew Alcindor (now Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) or Ahmad Rashad oops I mean Bobby Moore. Looks, we currently have no system. The three examples I just cited show three long-standing Wikipedia articles which deal with name changes in 3 different ways. The first notes the person's current name (ignoring the name they went by during the time period of the article in question) the second notes both names (but gives primacy to the name they were known by at the time) and the third notes only the name they were known by at the time, ignoring the current name. At the very least, Wikipedia should have some guidance for these situations. I'm not saying this solution is the best of the three (or perhaps more to come) options, but there needs to be some standard, which is better than no standard. --Jayron32 21:01, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    A lot of tables don't have that kind of room. You also have to take context into it. For way more than half of Ali's boxing career he was known as Muhammad Ali, not Cassius Clay. Same with Abdul-Jabbar (Lew Alcindor). In their field they had dual names and it makes sense to choose the more prominent one in their field. Jenner in sports was only known by one name, Bruce Jenner. The sports fields should reflect that and it's why there is notability in the first place. Just redirect to her current name of Caitlyn Jenner and all will be well. Fyunck(click) (talk) 05:03, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Yes, by wholesale ex post facto name changing, wikipedia has the FACTS wrong at your link, against the sources at the time. Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. won the Olympic gold medal. Under that name, he had a building professional career until he defeated Liston and publicly changed his name. The name Muhammad Ali was publicly unheard of, associated to that individual, until AFTER the Liston fight. I dare anybody to find a source written before the Liston fight that refers to him that way. And the wikipedia article for Ali correctly reflects that history. Same story with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar; find any coverage written during his UCLA career under that name. John Wooden referred to him as Lewis his entire life. Find a 1969 source reporting the NBA draft, what name goes #1? In other places I have shown Olympic athletes, particularly females, change their public names at given points in their career; Mary Decker -Tabb -Slaney,.and we report their name at the time. Trackinfo (talk) 21:48, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Fyunck(click): Please use the correct pronouns. Even when speaking of Caitlyn in the past, the pronouns are her/she. We had major problems with this during the Manning dispute. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 21:43, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    What? Bruce Jenner was a he when he won the decathlon. Bruce Jenner was born a he. Today Caitlyn is a she. That is proper enough by my book. You can put in this encyclopedia whatever you'd like, but I won't be bound to it on a talk page. Back to the story at hand, in tennis the ladies get their names placed in charts as they were at the time they won tournaments. If they later get married and change their names, their main bio may or may not change with the marriage, but the tournaments keep the old name that they played under. If they married while still playing tennis we weigh the proportion of tournaments played under each name in deciding what to use throughout wikipedia. Keeps it simple and easy. Fyunck(click) (talk) 23:01, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Again, please don't misgender. I'll post info about the arb com case related to this FYI. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 00:58, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

#::::::::Don't order people around. If he wants to call him Bruce and "he" that's his business. (talk) 01:26, 6 June 2015 (UTC)

  1. No, it isn't "his business". Intentional misgendering is not acceptable on Wikipedia. There's a reason that administrators have authorized discretionary sanctions for misgendering on articles and talk pages referring to transgender people. Funcrunch (talk) 02:19, 6 June 2015 (UTC)

#::::::::::::I suggest you read the sanctions again. Your interepeation is faulty. Sanctions are for willful disruption. Eg tranny, heshe name calling. (talk) 02:21, 7 June 2015 (UTC)

  1. I read it, and I don't see it there or listed in Wikipedia policy. I don't feel I'm misgendering but I do feel you are if referring to the winner of the Olympic decathlon as a woman/she/her, since that's probably against the Olympic rules. But it doesn't bother me at all how you want to refer to Bruce or Caitlyn. It only bothers me if you start putting warning notices on my talk page about sanctioning me for some odd reason. I'm only trying to help here, but if I have to adhere to some odd political correctness when I feel I'm helping, or I have to walk on glass whenever I post... then it's probably not worth my while to lend a hand. Fyunck(click) (talk) 01:49, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    IMO, the notice was deserved for misgendering. Here's the applicable quote from MOS:IDENTITY (emphasis added): "An exception to the above is made for terms relating to gender identity. In such cases, Wikipedia favors self-designation, even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise. Any person whose gender might be questioned should be referred to by the pronouns, possessive adjectives, and gendered nouns ... that reflect that person's latest expressed gender self-identification. This applies in references to any phase of that person's life, unless the subject has indicated a preference otherwise. Direct quotations may need to be handled as exceptions (in some cases adjusting the portion used may reduce apparent contradictions, and "[sic]" may be used where necessary)." Skyerise (talk) 14:12, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    You'll notice it was talking of titles and prose, and did not say discussion pages. It's different from your WP:Battleground notice and probably why you threw it at me. Fyunck(click) (talk) 08:53, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. Oppose. Introducing anacrhonisms degrades the historical accuracy, and therefore degrades this project. Resolute 16:11, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support 3 and 4 This strikes a good balance between accuracy (which requires using the current name) and readability (which requires including the previous name). Regardless of whether Jenner was really born he and changed, really born he and didn't change, or really born she and mistaken for he, the jury's still out on the truth of it. The polite thing to do in the meantime is take Jenner at her word. We can always change it back to "Bruce" if hard evidence ever proves us wrong. Darkfrog24 (talk) 18:27, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. I'm not expressing a specific support or opposition to this proposal. There are probably times, specifically in an introductory situation to a longer paragraph, where this might be appropriate. As far as for athletic results or other involvement in timely events, we should be consistent across all of wikipedia and use the name that was published at the time. To do otherwise violates the sources at the time and would put wikipedia at odds with reports of the events. We can wikilink to the article that will further explain the name changes these individuals have adopted later in life. That would go for athletes who changed their names for any reason religious (Cascius Clay, Lew Alcindor), marriage or theatrical purposes (Chad Ocho Cinco). And so if it is a potentially confusing situation, we should have the option to explain where needed. That absolutely does not mean, in the Jenner situation, that we need to put Caitlyn in every result or credit. As I posted into Talk:Caitlyn Jenner, those marks were set by a male athlete named Bruce Jenner and will never qualify to be accepted as women's marks, no matter what the current chosen name is. To put wikipedia policy above what the press reported and what the world governing body accepts means wikipedia policy needs to be changed to adopt to us reporting reality. We should all know; failure to report proper information; to report just what the primary source wishes to be published without perspective is wrong. Trackinfo (talk) 23:40, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Oppose a general rule like this. Case by case, use common sense. Carrite (talk) 01:02, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  6. Support 3 or 4 without preference (I'm double-voting, sorry, but this discussion looks like it can't be tallied by # anyway). Either "Caitlyn Jenner (then Bruce Jenner)" or "Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)" seems fine to me. The important thing here, as I see it, is to write in a way that is respectful of her identity but still useful and clear to Wikipedia editors, and omitting the male name from athletic events that were and still are male-only doesn't serve the latter goal. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 13:45, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  7. Support in context of athletic accomplishments, as a compromise between respect for the athlete and accuracy to the sources. I slightly prefer this option over option 4 because it places respect for the athlete first. --Alison (Crazytales) (talkedits) 14:27, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    Clarification: I think this should apply to athletes who change their name for non-gender-related reasons too, like the oft-aforementioned examples of Mohammed Ali, Karim Abdul-Jabbar, and Metta World Peace. --Alison (Crazytales) (talkedits) 14:30, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  8. Support along with option 4. With both names listed and a footnote explaining the transition, there will be no confusion and it is not "rewriting history". Funcrunch (talk) 15:01, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  9. Oppose per Fyunck and Resolute's comments above. Historical reality is what it was; present reality is what it is. Change is a universal constant, and life is messy. Imposing retroactive and anachronistic solutions on history is a bad idea; and it's an even worse idea when it's ideologically driven. Bruce Jenner now redirects to the Caitlyn Jenner-titled article; let the bio article explain present reality, and leave the past reality alone in our sports history articles. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 17:12, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  10. Support 3 or 4 without preference per Roscelese. We are in the business of clearly and concisely conveying information. We should convey what name was in use at the time. We should also connect that to the current name. We should avoid making any assumptions about how familiar people might be with the subject, or assume that they will follow every single link. I don't see how indicating "Her name was X at the time, but you may now know her as Y", is anachronistic, and it can be done clearly and concisely in two words.--Trystan (talk) 18:54, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  11. Support along with option 4. I would prefer this option but I would be satisfied with either. This avoids confusion and respects her identity. If people want to put her former name for verifiability purposes, I would be fine with that. Options 3 and 4 don't bring up a "historical revisionism" argument or a "not respecting identities argument", and both are relatively concise and easy to do. BenLinus1214talk 20:35, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  12. Oppose We don't need both names. We have redirects to avoid that. --AussieLegend () 14:09, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  13. Support along with option 4, per Roscelese. I have a slight preference for this option as it puts her current name first but I would be fine with option 4. These two options avoid rewriting history, accurately summarize the situation as it happened (which is that she won the medal while competing as Bruce Jenner), and respects the person's gender. Ca2james (talk) 16:08, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  14. Support This option or option 1. People change their names for all sorts of reasons, including having different names in different languages, marriage and divorce, gender transition, personal beliefs, or for career purposes (like actors). Beyond the most important reason, of respecting a person's chosen identity and gender, flip-flopping between names is cumbersome, confusing, and prone in inconsistency. If it is truly important, a person's former name can/should be noted - but they should not be identified by that name (or certainly the adherent gender). TMagen (talk) 16:50, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  15. Support this (as my second choice); see my comments above about option 2. -sche (talk) 17:59, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  16. Support: Good compromise between identifying people by what they are called today and not confusing readers who know them by a previous name. --Guy Macon (talk) 18:06, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  17. Oppose Why should articles, that aren't even about a particular person, have to include a history of that person's name/gender changes? Surely the only relevant name/gender is the one they had at the point they are relevant to the article? Anything further is setting off on a tangent leading the reader away from the point. Do we have a policy like this for those who change name through multiple divorces? --Escape Orbit (Talk) 18:22, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  18. Oppose This is incorrect for the same reason as Option 2: anachronism. I don't see anything transphobic or discriminatory, when talking about past events, about mentioning the persona that the transgender person assumed publicly and socially at the time. It's a whole different matter than in an article where this person is the main topic, as many discussions here have established. Option 4 is descriptive enough, and corrects this issue. Place Clichy (talk) 12:09, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  19. generally acceptable particularly in cases where the person was significantly notable before "coming out" or where BLP concerns about other living people are involved. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 20:11, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  20. Support in Jenner's case and within sports related articles. I don't think that this applies will apply to all other biography related articles. I think that all pronoun use should be avoided as confusing for readers if an unexpected pronoun is used and potentially offensive if it is not. 14:29, 12 June 2015 (UTC) revised GregKaye 15:47, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
  21. Support This seems like a sensible compromise that balances the "high degree of sensitivity" required by BLP with the need to avoid confusion. Neljack (talk) 07:47, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
  22. Support per Neljack. Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 03:41, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  23. Support, with the conditional that it's context-sensitive and the old name could sometimes be omitted (and probably only needs to be mentioned the first time they come up in an article.) In general this seems like the best compromise; it clearly respects their identification, while providing enough information that people who are only familiar with that section of history using their old name will be able to follow the article. As I said in my comment for option 2, though, I feel the old name could be left out in situations where there's unlikely to be any serious confusion. --Aquillion (talk) 07:14, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 4 (use both names, previous name first)[edit]

  1. Support along with option 3. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 22:07, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. Support - Agree that it would be entirely confusing to refer to Caitlyn Jenner competing in men's sports. Are we to assume that official Olympics records have been updated to change Bruce to Caitlyn? Seems very unlikely to me. Both names with the then-current name first keeps things in the correct time context, which sounds more natural, while acknowledging and showing respect for the change. It's the sensible middle solution. ―Mandruss  22:12, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support. This is how a majority of publishers handle the issue. Wikipedia should not blaze a new trail on this issue. Binksternet (talk) 23:02, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. Support I would support this proposal as well as it lies in the middle more. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 01:02, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Support The talk page for the article on the Decathlon now has this: We can debate the name, but there's no question that Caitlyn is a notable exception to the statement that men typically compete in the decathlon and women in the heptathlon. A woman who has accomplished the amazing feat of winning the Olympic decathlon - an event completely dominated by males -deserves at least a statement about it in this article. Simply putting Caitlyn Jenner would encourage such thinking.Richardson mcphillips (talk) 02:18, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  6. Support Although I personally prefer Option 3, per my note in the General Discussion about how cis athlete name changes have been handled on Wikipedia, I think this option is a reasonable compromise. Funcrunch (talk) 04:56, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  7. Support. This is the compatible with MOS:IDENTITY, factual and informative, so I don't think they are disrespectful. I don't care much between options 3 and 4, though this one is gaining traction and more likely to lead to consensus (see that many people supporting Option 1 agreed to use both names, and were made bephore options 3 and 4 were created). Diego (talk) 13:44, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  8. Support. In the 1976 men's Olympic decathlon, Caitlyn Jenner competed under the name "Bruce Jenner". Excluding "Caitlyn" from the article could be taken as an affront to Jenner (and would likely lead to well-meaning new users putting "Caitlyn" back in). Excluding "Bruce" would create unnecessary confusion (and would also likely lead to well-meaning new users putting "Bruce" back in). The name that Jenner competed under should be listed first, followed by her current name. Howicus (Did I mess up?) 16:20, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Wait. Are you seriously proposing to alter history on the basis of not "causing affront"? Do you realize just what kind of slippery slope that is? Resolute 16:30, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Compiling new knowledge is not rewriting history, it's adding to it. Please don't use such hyperboles. Diego (talk) 16:37, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    It's not hyperbole. Retroactively changing names of historical record is rewriting history. At the very least, if you are going to do it, do it consistently and go retroactively change the name of every person who later changed their name - either by marriage or for other reasons. Resolute 16:54, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    There are countless examples of names being updated in historical listings after an athlete, actor, or other public figure changes their name. I cited one example in the General Discussion below: Muhammad Ali's name listed with Cassius Clay in parentheses for the list of heavyweight boxing champions. Go to a few movie cast listings and you'll see "Joe Schmo (as John Schmo)". Cis people change their names all the time and get acknowledged without people complaining about "rewriting history". It's really not that different here. Funcrunch (talk) 03:36, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    And as was explained before, Ali was notable because he was a boxer. We only get one title and Muhammad Ali was chosen over Cassius Clay because it was much more notable. In lists where people are counting victories and stuff it is much better for readers to be consistent instead of putting in both Cassius Clay and Muhammad Ali. If Jenner had also competed a good chuck of her sports lifespan as Caitlyn, then we would have to decide which is better for our readers to follow. Which was more notable in sports/Olympics/track and field events, etc... But that's not the case here. We had to make decisions about tennis great Helen Wills notability and whether we should title her article that or Helen Wills Moody. We went with the former because it was more notable. These decisions are made all the time and editors are usually pretty reasonable on coming to a conclusion. But forcing a conclusion on past historical events because of a sex-change that happened long after sports retirement, doesn't sit too well with the wikipedia way of doing things. At least not from my vantage point. Fyunck(click) (talk) 09:11, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    Actually, I would disagree with both of you and offer a more simple reply: The existence of a mistake made in the past does not represent a justification for repeating that mistake in the present. The proper solution here is to correct those other anachronisms, not create more. Resolute 13:29, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    Excluding "Caitlyn" from the article could be taken as an affront to Jenner... Not to mention that excluding it would also be confusing, since Caitlyn Jenner is the title we use for the biography. Both names need to be connected for the sake of those of us editors who have first learned about this person from her Wikipedia article. Diego (talk) 16:35, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  9. Oppose. Introducing anacrhonisms degrades the historical accuracy, and therefore degrades this project. Resolute 16:12, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    That would be a decent argument to oppose Option 2 or Option 3, since they both would state that Caitlyn Jenner won gold in the decathlon. It is not anachronistic to say that Bruce won the medal and is now named Caitlyn, any more than it would be anachronistic to update Thomas Jefferson with facts related to Jefferson's legacy in the 21st century. Articles are not frozen in time. ―Mandruss  16:32, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    We're talking about different things here. Updating Jefferson's own article with changes to his legacy is not the same as altering the historical record of articles about the 1976 Olympics by introducing an anachronistic name change. I completely understand that people want to avoid a repeat of the Chelsea Manning mess; respecting the individual as she wishes to be viewed in her biography, and in other articles related to her person, is laudable and desirable. But changing the historical record of her competitions respects neither WP:BLP nor the individual. Rather, it is a violation of WP:SYNTH, WP:POV and others. Resolute 16:54, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    I'm sorry, but I still think you're arguing under the wrong Option. Option 4 does not change anything about the competition, it merely inserts a parenthetical note about a later name change. There is nothing even remotely improper about doing that. ―Mandruss  17:26, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    No, I am arguing under the correct option, and I maintain my opposition for my stated reason. Resolute 18:41, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  10. Support using historic gender and name in articles talking about past events, making note of the new name/gender in a parenthetical. I find it preferable to have the past name first in these situations hence, "Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner" or "Ron Artest (now Meta World Peace)". With Artest, since his career in basketball continues, I would even be inclined to use that format for things he did before the change, and for things he did after the change say "Meta World Peace (formerly Ron Artest)" to preserve the continuity and make clear that this is the same person; but I wouldn't necessarily connect Bruce with Caitlyn going forward - just backwards, as she's no longer a competitive athlete; I'd only do that where relevant. To be clear, what I'd like to see with Jenner: when discussing his previous life and accomplishments, refer to him as a male named Bruce and note that she is now a female going by Caitlyn. When discussing her current life and accomplishments, refer to her as a female named Caitlyn. Explain the situation wherever clarification is needed. ~ ONUnicorn(Talk|Contribs)problem solving 18:18, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  11. Support 3 and 4 This strikes a good balance between accuracy (which requires using the current name) and readability (which requires including the previous name). Regardless of whether Jenner was really born he and changed, really born he and didn't change, or really born she and mistaken for he, the jury's still out on the truth of it. The polite thing to do in the meantime is take Jenner at her word. We can always change it back to "Bruce" if hard evidence ever proves us wrong. Darkfrog24 (talk) 18:29, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  12. Oppose - there would be times that this format would be helpful, but not as blanket coverage for all things in her past life. Especially not for Olympic records and such. Fyunck(click) (talk) 23:18, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Fyunck(click): In your Option 3 oppose you say, "He won them as Bruce Jenner but now she is Caitlyn Jenner." That is precisely what Option 4 says, so I don't understand your oppose here. Further, the description of Option 4 is quite clear that it is not "blanket coverage for all things in her past life". ―Mandruss  08:32, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    That was simply a statement, not what should be done to every article. And it's quite clear that it is blanket coverage so I'm not sure what you're reading. The description says "In articles outside of the biography itself, use the person's previous name, but include current name in parentheses. Would be used when previous name is relevant or listed in a historical context (e.g., list of sports awards). Example, in a list of Olympic gold medalists, the entry Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner) would be used. That is pretty much every time as far as I can tell. The Olympics in particular should say simply "Bruce Jenner" and the redirect will take care of the rest. Fyunck(click) (talk) 08:53, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Fyunck(click): Maybe the language could be clarified even further, but I don't read it as applying to all references prior to June 2015. My clues are "when previous name is relevant" — it won't be especially relevant in all cases — and "e.g., list of sports awards" — it's relevant in our example case because of the official records and widespread news coverage using the old name. In other words, if we currently mention somewhere (outside Caitlyn Jenner) that Bruce Jenner broke his arm in 1970, I don't have a problem with changing that to "Caitlyn Jenner" or "Caitlyn Jenner (then Bruce Jenner)", and I don't think Option 4 would preclude that usage. That would be a case not covered by guideline and therefore local discretion. EvergreenFir crafted the Option 4 language, so perhaps s/he would care to weigh in here. As for whether to include "(now Caitlyn Jenner)" in the Olympics reference, see the comment in my !vote, "It's the sensible middle solution." What I meant by that is that some give is required on both sides if we're going to reach a consensus here. Option 4 requires one side to mention the name "Bruce" in that case, despite their desire to omit it, and requires the other side to mention "Caitlyn" in that case, despite their desire to omit it. It's a compromise, and that's not the dirty word that many seem to think it is at Wikipedia. "The redirect will take care of the rest" assumes that the reader will click through to the target article, and that will often not be the case. ―Mandruss  10:38, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    @Mandruss:I agree 100% with you that compromise is not a dirty word (like it has often become on wikipedia). Here is how I read Option 4 (and I don't see any other way to interpret it). "We always use Caitlyn Jenner in place of Bruce Jenner. But in rare cases outside the biography, when relevant, it will be ok to use Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner). That's it... no other options." To me that's not right and is blanket coverage. Now if it had said something like the following I might be more likely to support: After June 2015 we will generally use 'Caitlyn Jenner.' There will be some uncommon times after June 2015 where it will be appropriate to use 'Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner).' Prior to June 2015, when dealing with sports in lists, she will be shown as 'Bruce Jenner.' When talking in prose about the sports achievements, the first mention should be 'Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)' and all subsequent use should simply be 'Bruce Jenner.' When not talking about sports achievements, prior to June 2015, it will depend on the situation as to whether first use should be 'Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)' or 'Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner)', but usually Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner) will be preferred. As in saying in '1970 Caitlyn Jenner (formerly Bruce Jenner) broke her arm.' But perhaps also '100 year old farmer John remembers sitting little 2-year-old Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner) on his knee and telling the boy about how fast he ran when chased by a bull." This allows some flexibility in usage. To me that's more like compromise. But I didn't write the options nor did I come in here with an agenda. I happened to notice it when dealing with a different situation. That's my two cents, but as it is written I can not support this option. Fyunck(click) (talk) 18:56, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    Something tells me some clarification is needed, if we disagree this much on the meaning of three sentences. But your proposed interpretation would be incomprehensible to the average editor. Try putting that in a new Option 5 and see if you get any !votes besides your own (include a flowchart please). Nothing like this ever needs to be that complex, and complexity is our enemy when it comes to guidelines. ―Mandruss  20:06, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    Well, @EvergreenFir: wrote option 4. Ask her to clarify the exact meaning since you might be voting for something you don't want. You had asked for compromise and mine is a compromise. It is long but could certainly be shortened. I was simply trying to convey how I thought the usage of Jenner should be handled in a way that I could support it. Fyunck(click) (talk) 21:25, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
    Pinged with no answer so I'm thinking it's probably what I had said. Fyunck(click) (talk) 16:50, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  13. Support: I think option 1 is the most practical (since a redirect --or a piped link-- ensures the later identity is correctly indicated), but if the person in question expresses that such treatment would bother them, then this is the right compromise, I think. --Waldir talk 10:14, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  14. Oppose a general rule like this - Case by case, use common sense. Carrite (talk) 01:01, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  15. Oppose. Ironholds (talk) 01:55, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  16. Oppose One of our roles as Wikipedia editors is to get the facts right. The fact is Caitlyn Jenner has always been a woman, was a woman when she competed in her various Olympic events, and should be recognized as a woman. I see that some are objecting to this on the basis that it's just self-evident that a woman could not have won the decathlon competition in 1976. While it's completely up to the IOC to list the winners how they wish, it's up to use to get it right. There's no real debate that Caitlyn won the Decathlon in the Montreal Olympics. We need to recognize that fact and let people know of that reality. Listing "Bruce Jenner" as the winner is revisionist history - it's pretending that someone besides Caitlyn won. Similarly, Caitlyn needs to be recognized for her other athletic accomplishments. Among those are:
    1) Being the best female performer over 100 meters in 1976
    2) Being the best female performer over 400 meters, ever
    3) Being the best female performer in the high jump in 1976
    4) Being the best female performer in the long jump in 1976
    5) Being the best female performer in the decathlon, ever.
    Again, it is up to the IAAF to ratify times how they see fit. However, it's our duty to note the facts - (1) Caitlyn is a woman, (2) Caitlyn has always been a woman, and (3) Caitlyn actually achieved all these performances.
    One of our other important roles as Wikipedia editors is to be effective advocates for social justice. We cannot do this if we commit violence on trans* people by misgendering or deadnaming them. By denying Caitlyn - and the trans* community as a whole - ownership over her own athletic performances, we are erasing her identity for our own comfort. I strongly strongly strongly urge that "Caitlyn" be used universally. 2602:306:808C:2100:7D00:A53D:7E6:9379 (talk) 15:12, 6 June 2015 (UTC)CaitlynFan
    You seem to be under the misinterpretation that the role of " Wikipedia editors is to be effective advocates for social justice". It is not. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 16:03, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    We can advocate social justice while still staying within those suggestions. Reporting the facts - as relayed to us by reliable media sources - can be social justice advocacy. For instance, saying "Caitlyn Jenner had the fastest 100 meters of any woman in 1976" is NOT original research. If we said "The IAAF should ratify Caitlyn Jenner's 1976 100 meters as the fastest by any woman in that year" we might be taking it too far. However, simply stating the facts - (1) Caitlyn is a woman, (2) Caitlyn ran faster than Annegret Richter in 1976 - is not going beyond any rule you cited to. 2602:306:808C:2100:7D00:A53D:7E6:9379 (talk) 16:12, 6 June 2015 (UTC)CaitlynFan
    I'm sorry, but that's just ridiculous. You are first of all an obvious sock since that user's only edits have been to vote here, and second, you are an obvious troll as well trying to delegitimise the conversation by saying extremist things that transgender women would never claim. I'm trans and I think you're trying to dirty the pool to make trans people look both extreme and kind of awful as well. Ogress smash! 08:40, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
    I believe that the original piece was second-degree humour, and/or reductio ad absurbum. In this light, I enjoyed reading it. However, for the sake of clarity and now that the IP is blocked, it may be a good idea to bar the vote. Place Clichy (talk) 12:09, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  17. Oppose, forces transgender individuals to be identified using a name that emphasized their past gender first. Uncool. Skyerise (talk) 12:03, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    That's a seriously problematic phrasing. There is no "past gender." She was always a woman. It's this sort of clueless phrasing that makes dealing with allies so difficult. (talk) 20:35, 5 June 2015 (UTC)CaitlynFan
  18. Support 3 or 4 without preference (I'm double-voting, sorry, but this discussion looks like it can't be tallied by # anyway). Either "Caitlyn Jenner (then Bruce Jenner)" or "Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)" seems fine to me. The important thing here, as I see it, is to write in a way that is respectful of her identity but still useful and clear to Wikipedia editors, and omitting the male name from athletic events that were and still are male-only doesn't serve the latter goal. –Roscelese (talkcontribs) 13:45, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  19. Oppose per Fyunck and Carrite, and for the reasons of historical accuracy which I expressed under Option 1 above. When someone has been a prominent public sports figure as a man, common sense suggests that we should not attempt to rewrite history to reflect later transgender revelations. We can and should acknowledge the present reality of Jenner's gender identity with compassion and sensitivity, but attempting to rewrite 65 years of the personal gender history of a prominent public figure is divorced from reality. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 17:22, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  20. Support along with option 3. See my comment there. Both make sense to me. BenLinus1214talk 20:36, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  21. Oppose We don't need both names. We have redirects to avoid that. --AussieLegend () 14:11, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  22. Support along with option 3, per Roscelese. I have a slight preference for option 3 as it puts her current name first but I would be fine with this option, too. These two options avoid rewriting history, accurately summarize the situation as it happened (which is that she won the medal while competing as Bruce Jenner), and respects the person's gender. Ca2james (talk) 16:09, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  23. Support this (as my third choice); see my comments above about options 2 and 3. -sche (talk) 18:00, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  24. Oppose Per my opposition to Option 3. Why should articles, that aren't even about a particular person, have to include a history of that person's name/gender changes? Surely the only relevant name is the one they were known by at the point they are relevant to the article? Anything further is setting off on a tangent leading away from the point. Do we have a policy for this for those who change name through multiple divorces? --Escape Orbit (Talk) 18:24, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  25. Support Although it is wrong to say that a person (actually, a persona) participated in an event when they didn't, it is perfectly relevant to mention their subsequent change. Place Clichy (talk) 12:09, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  26. Support as "Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn Jenner)" Oppose use of pronouns when practical and when "Jenner" would suit. GregKaye 15:50, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
  27. This would also be an acceptable compromise, though I prefer option 3 since it puts the emphasis on the subject's self-identification and thus better fulfils BLP's requirement of a "high degree of sensitivity". Neljack (talk) 07:52, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
  28. Weak support. I prefer option 3, since it respects their self-identification more clearly, but in terms of clarity this would at least be better than using only one name, and it doesn't ignore their self-identification entirely. --Aquillion (talk) 07:16, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  29. Partial support: I'm mostly going with Option 5, but my reasoning there makes Option 4 the default for most cases that fit the criteria a) context pre-dates the name change, and b) the name-at-the-time is important; for other cases see my Option 5 comments. Also, don't be hidebound about it; the exact formatting and wording need not be set in stone; sometimes a simple piped link will work fine, especially in lists and tables.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  17:26, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  30. Support as most closely satisfying the condition that we recognize the subject's current identification (as Caitlyn) and that we provide accessible information (and so a person who has seen the name Bruce Jenner in an article about those olympics someplace should not be thoroughly confused). To those people who believe this is incorrectly gendering Caitlyn; we cannot speak to how Caitlyn experienced gender back then, but Caitlyn did present the name "Bruce" to the world, and that's all we are saying, I believe. Vanamonde93 (talk) 03:31, 15 June 2015 (UTC)
  31. Support per Roscelese and others (I'm also good with option 3 if the consensus it for that). I believe that without this, the information in sporting events (as an example) would not make sense to a reader not familiar with their recent lives. --Gonnym (talk) 09:50, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  32. Strongly Support This, or perhaps option 3, is probably the best choice in most cases. It preserves historical accuracy by clearly indicating who was identified, and how, for historic accomplishments or as a participant in historic events. Yet it also makes a clear link to the preswent, and provides a rader with both possibly useful search terms to learn more about the person involved. This is they way we should help our reders, by presentign the full facts, not a distorted revision of them, nor one thast ignores relevant later developments. DES (talk) 12:28, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 5 (no new rule, treat on a case-by-case basis)[edit]

  • Support option 5: no way the 1976 Summer Olympics article is ever going to be *exactly* the same as the United States v. Manning article or Rape in Germany (§ Notable offenders, third bullet), or 1968 in music (§ Release Date Unknown, last of the entries starting with S), or 12th Annual Grammy Awards (§ Classical, 5th bullet), etc., so any new rule that is passed as an "ad hoc" solution for the first case is going to have a destabilising effect on other pages that seem to have found some sort of equilibrium the way they are now, but with different solutions. Editor discretion is what is needed in all of those cases, not bulldozering in a new rule, which to all extents and purposes would be instruction creep. So if this RfC comes to a conclusion w.r.t. Jenner in the 1976 Summer Olympics article I'm fine with that, but I don't see any reason to extrapolate to remotely similar cases. --Francis Schonken (talk) 20:39, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. The current set of rules are not broken and do not need fixing. --Guy Macon (talk) 02:36, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
    • ? exactly what I meant: don't change the current rules (they seem to work pretty well for the main biography pages, and that includes the rules I added [4]), don't add new restrictive ones (for the subsidiary, event and overview pages mentioning the person exclusively in an earlier period: approach these in a case-by-case logic, exerting caution, good taste, editor discretion) – nothing broken, nothing needs fixing. --Francis Schonken (talk) 05:57, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
    Also: keep current specific guidelines where they are now, i.e. below "policy" level, thus allowing for the occasional exception when circumstances warrant it (per usual guideline provisions). --Francis Schonken (talk) 09:40, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, Macon clearly meant "oppose new rules".  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  17:20, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Support, but explain the options: Not a "rule" per se, just give examples. I'll draft them right now: Don't be hidebound about details; the exact formatting and wording need not be set in stone. Original-then-current works best when the context pre-dates the name change and in which the name-at-the-time is clearly important. When it's not (but still pre-dates the name change), use current-then-original in most cases, though current-only can work in cases where the name/gender is totally irrelevant (to everyone, not just gender language activists). When it post-dates the name change, use current-only, unless the former name is genuinely relevant, in which case use current-then-former. Former-only is never appropriate, in the form [[Bruce Jenner]] but may work fine as [[Caitlyn Jenner|Bruce Jenner]], especially in tables or lists. Inserting "now Caitlyn Jenner" or whatever at every single instance would be WP:POINTy browbeating; do it once per article (or occasionally more frequently; use the same rubric as for appropriate vs. over-linking). Avoid gender-specific language in all these cases, so the he/man vs. she/woman issue simply vanishes. Short version: Use common sense and rational thinking, focused on reader's needs and expectations, not how you personally want to change the world. PS: This analysis doesn't even have anything (other than the avoid gender-specific language bit) to do with gender. I would treat David Johansen vs. Buster Poindexter exactly the same way. [Or would; looks like he's gone back to Johansen after becoming mostly-independently notable under the later name for a while. That actually makes him an interesting test case, but I don't want to lay out a big logic tree about how to treat coverage of him in three different periods but under two names, right in the middle of this more focused discussion.]  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  16:53, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Don't let this proposal distract us. The current rules were clearly written by a consensus tipped by advocates in violation of WP:SOURCE amongst other policies. They knew they were violating a policy at the time and had to write the exception into the guideline. Some cases are more equal than others. The rules are broken and need to be fixed. A band aid doesn't fix the problem, in fact a temporary solution only lasts until someone rewrites each article affected. We need a policy ground to stand on not excepted by a misguided guideline. Any other identity change, essentially name changes, are treated with a time base. There is an announcement date for the new identity. Usually it can be precisely defined though some cases come out of the closet more ambiguously. Sometimes nicknames evolve into a notorious stage name over a period of time, but even then, there is a range that can be defined and frequently there is a story behind it, which wikipedia should tell. Back to the original point, the information is there in contemporary sources. They don't go back and reprint newspapers with new names.
We've dealt with this before, we have examples and a precedent. Not even his birth name, "Duke" Morrison was credited in his first movie in 1929, John Wayne became the credited name in 1930. We've discussed before, Cassius Clay won the gold medal and beat Sonny Liston. He went by Cassius X. for a month but Muhammad Ali is the boxer the world came to know. If you were alive at the time, you would remember that was contentious too based on different prejudices than the current transgender situation. The point is, we should not go back in time and rewrite history. This is not fiction. We/wikipedia should report accurately what happened. The MOS:IDENTITY should be rewritten to conform to current policies. Trackinfo (talk) 08:10, 17 June 2015 (UTC)
Maybe there's a conflation of two different issues here, falling under different sets of policies/guidelines:
  1. Article title, falling under WP:AT, and particularily relevant, under WP:SPNC:
    → all following the same rules, whether there's a physical sex change or not: such change does *not* automatically lead to the article being moved to the new name (FYI, Beate Schmidt for the last of the examples listed above). As such not falling under whatever the MOS page WP:IDENTITY has to say on the topic.
  2. How the subject is referred to in secondary articles:
    → Works fine without the MOS needing a rewrite...; the MOS doesn't even say anything about which first name should be used where, editor discretion rarely leads to problems here (see for example "Schmidt was sentenced to 15 years in prison and detention in a psychiatric hospital" in Rape in Germany#Notable offenders avoiding to use "she" in combination with "Wolfgang"), and certainly not something to write a new "one size fits all" rule about. --Francis Schonken (talk) 10:20, 17 June 2015 (UTC)
Common sense would certainly be the correct option. We don't have that. We have people actively trying to post ridiculous statements like Option 4 #16 above into the wikipedia voice, using MOS:IDENTITY as the justification. Sure, the IAAF won't recognize those statements, I've explained why. Of course other sources don't report this. But those are only facts, which wikipedia should ignore in order to conform with this altered reality. It has a cascading effect. WP:BLP this affects every other displaced, legitimately female (XX) athlete over a 40 year history. Trackinfo (talk) 19:01, 17 June 2015 (UTC)
Well good, reason it out then on the page or use WP:DR, and common sense will prevail then - there will probably be several common sense solutions depending on the context -- so, you don't need VPP intervention from the top down. Alanscottwalker (talk) 19:10, 17 June 2015 (UTC)
I'll argue, others have been reverting. The problem is, and the reason I came to this discussion, MOS:IDENTITY is a current guideline that gives them the right to ignore sources and write what they want, in order to prove their WP:POINT to the general public. Fighting against a WP:POV written policy makes it harder. Trackinfo (talk) 09:25, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
MOS:IDENTITY doesn't give a right to ignore sources, the new name needs to be exquisitely sourced before it can be used. What the guideline does is encouraging editors to use more recent, up-to-date sources over older, obsolete ones that didn't know better when they were written. Diego (talk) 09:32, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
Getting Trackinfo's issue (I think), here's my response --Francis Schonken (talk) 10:04, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Unilateral changes to MOS:IDENTITY[edit]

Francis Schonken made a bold edit to MOS:IDENTITY while this discussion was still ongoing (unclosed). I reverted it because I see no consensus for it here (and it would be best for us all to wait until this RFC is closed to see what consensus is, rather than for one involved participant to try to judge that consensus is in his favour); I also think the edit effectively repeals MOS:IDENTITY (which I see no consensus for in this discussion) and fails to understand that it is explicitly set up as "An exception..." to other criteria; it also controversially suggests that saying "she [trans woman] did x" would violate content policies — a notion which has been suggested before by a few users, but has never AFAICT gained anything even approaching consensus. Rather than proceed to discuss his edit per BRD, the same user re-inserted it, citing WP:VPP#Option 5 (no new rule, treat on a case-by-case basis, which shows two users supporting and one user opposing his idea, and which doesn't come close to the level of support other options in this thread have. The user has yet again inserted his preferred version in what certainly resembles and attempt to prejudice the outcome of this RFC, and has told me to "take it to talk", getting WP:BRD quite backwards. Can someone else look into this? -sche (talk) 18:05, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

WP:BRD? Really? see below... --Francis Schonken (talk) 07:00, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
As remarked above, MoS, a guideline, was written as to override policy. There's no policy-level agreement to do that. I removed the policy infraction, while my first attempt to only mitigate the policy-infringing statements was reverted. --Francis Schonken (talk) 18:20, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

From WP:NPOV, second and third paragraph of the lede:

NPOV is a fundamental principle of Wikipedia and of other Wikimedia projects. It is also one of Wikipedia's three core content policies; the other two are "Verifiability" and "No original research". These policies jointly determine the type and quality of material that is acceptable in Wikipedia articles, and, because they work in harmony, they should not be interpreted in isolation from one another. Editors are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with all three.

This policy is non-negotiable, and the principles upon which it is based cannot be superseded by other policies or guidelines, nor by editor consensus.

I bolded cannot be superseded by other policies or guidelines in the above – as such a no-brainer to remove from a guideline any statements that explicitly try to supersede this.

Further: "When there is a discrepancy between the term most commonly used by reliable sources for a person or group and the term that person or group uses for themselves, Wikipedia should use the term that is most commonly used by reliable sources; if it isn't clear which is most used, use the term that the person or group uses." is an erroneous and misleading summary of the quoted policies. These policies don't let themselves be condensed to a few soundbites, otherwise these policies wouldn't have so many ifs and buts. Remove summary that only leads to non-comprehension and discussion.

Also: "Wikipedia favors self-designation" is bad style (Wikipedia is not a sentient being that can favor or disfavor whatever); and infringes both WP:NPOV (if anything Wikipedia should be neutral on the topic of self-designation) and WP:NOT (e.g. WP:NOT a means of promotion). So, remove until a more appropriate way to express this has been found. --Francis Schonken (talk) 06:46, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

You are entirely misreading IDENTITY and going against a couple years worth of discussion. Take up your beef at the village pump. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 21:21, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
This is the village pump. --Francis Schonken (talk) 21:40, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
Lol so it is. Well then let the discussion continue here. I see no issue with NPOV, V, or OR and the IDENTITY text. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 21:47, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
WP:IDENTITY as written is unreconcilable with WP:V. --Francis Schonken (talk) 21:50, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
This is what I have been arguing in as many places as possible. The current version of MOS:IDENTITY deliberately goes against core policy. It is written to nullify policy because this case is so exceptional. Transgender people are more equal than others." The WP:ADVOCATES got what they wanted written. They knew it was wrong when they wrote it so they had to write grammar to build in the exception. even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise, nullifying WP:SOURCE, WP:V. They even had to put words into wikipedia's voice. "Wikipedia favors self-designation," This exception is the cause of our problem. It clearly has to be changed. How do we change it to something that conforms with existing policy? Francis Schonken made a bold move to try to fix the problem. If not Francis, when will someone come in here and settle the issue? Or will this discussion just hang around until it drops off into the archive with no decision and is forgotten? That's the ticking time bomb I've been expecting already. We've been at this since June 2. Trackinfo (talk) 22:36, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
MOS:IDENTITY is perfectly fine with WP:V, specifically the section of WP:V about individuals being experts on themselves: WP:ABOUTSELF. There's nothing wrong with saying WP favors self-designation for certain things (religion, gender identity, etc.) as it can still be verified with statements by the individual themselves and that they would have the most recent and accurate info on the topic. Perhaps your concerns would be fixed if we update WP:ABOUTSELF to say that self sources are preferred in specific, limited cases like sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, etc.? EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 22:59, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
About themselves is fine. The conflict, with sources, is when it goes against their interaction with others, which affect WP:BLPs of the others; when it goes against sources, causing wikipedia to misstate historical facts, as in purported females acting in male roles. If the transgender people have no established history and can operate in their own bubble, there is no conflict with sources. But with notable figures, the kind of people we deal with on wikipedia, when they have a known public history but wikipedia reports the story differently, it damages the entire credibility of wikipedia's ability to report any fact correctly. Trackinfo (talk) 23:22, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
It's not difficult to reword stuff to avoid confusion. If your issue is with pronouns, that's a different issue. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 23:59, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
It's not about pronouns. And on Jenner, I was finally the one to gender neutralize a bunch that nobody else seemed to tackle. I'd invite you to tackle the sentence: "Jenner contended that she likes the cereal and eats the breakfast cereal two to three times per week." with time appropriate language. The issue I have raised is about reporting historical fact. We have editors trying to report in the wikipedia voice that Caitlyn Jenner achieved female athletics records that (XY) Jenner would never be qualified to hold, WP:BLP displacing decades of legitimate (meaning XX) female athletes; plus that Caitlyn Jenner married three women; fathered 6 children (4 of them notable); that Caitlyn played male roles on television and in a couple of bad movies. Those things were accomplished by a person representing to be a male by the public name of Bruce Jenner. If Bruce was Caitlyn at the time, perhaps Jenner wouldn't have been nominated for the 1980 Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actor, because she was doing a much better job pulling off the male part than the ex-jock, male actor Bruce Jenner did.. And in the other film, it was Adam Sandler who transgendered the award by winning the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress. OK, I digressed. Sources throughout that era report Bruce's name, its engraved on the many awards. Wikipedia reporting otherwise, because the current draft of MOS:IDENTITY allows it to, means we are not reporting the true facts that are known to anybody who has followed this story through time. You will not find a source written before 2015 that mentions the name Caitlyn Jenner. Until we fix the problem, the loophole in MOS:IDENTITY is inviting editors to insert incorrect facts. Trackinfo (talk) 11:19, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
  1. Move the first sentence of the first paragraph ("Disputes over how to refer to a person or group are addressed by Wikipedia content policies, such as those on verifiability, and neutral point of view (and article titles when the term appears in the title of an article).") down, i.e. below "An exception to the above ...". (side remark: besides overcoming the unwanted exception to core content policy, it is also maybe better not to start a section with "Disputes...", so moving the sentence about how to resolve disputes – not assuming "dispute" is necessary to continue reading - down, so that it concludes the section, seems like a better idea from that perspective too).
  2. insert the qualifier "most of the" in "..., even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise", thus: "..., even when usage by most of the reliable sources indicates otherwise", indicating that this can't be done when all of the reliable sources indicate otherwise.
  3. As for getting rid of "Wikipedia favors ..." (which is unreconcilable with WP:NPOV), replace it by "give precedence to ..." --Francis Schonken (talk) 05:52, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
OK then for this implementation in three steps of "It's not difficult to reword stuff to avoid confusion"? --Francis Schonken (talk) 22:15, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
I agree with the first point; I think the second sentence is the main point for the first bullet, and the current first sentence works better as an independent third bullet. As it is currently written, I don't read the "exception" language in the second bullet as being an exception to core policies, because nothing in WP:MOSIDENTITY conflicts with core policies.
For suggestion 2, I don't understand the point of it; it seems like unnecessary added words. If there are reliable sources as to someone's self-identification of their own gender identity (as we of course require), then it can't be the case that there is zero usage of that identity in reliable sources.
I don't have any objection to the wordsmithing suggested in point three. Phrasing a style guideline as an imperative (with Wikipedia as the implied speaker) or as "Wikipedia <verb>" is all the same; neither is plausibly a violation of NPOV. The imperative formulation is probably, clearer, though both formulations are found in the MOS.
It would probably be best to wait for a few more people to comment and a clear consensus to develop before making any changes.--Trystan (talk) 00:20, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
OK, I don't see a problem splitting the first and second sentences of what is currently point 1 into separate bullet points and moving the first sentence to the end of the section. (Alternatively, indent and italicize the first sentence at the top of the section à la the "For results of past discussions" and "See also" pointers at the top of other sections, leave the second sentence as bullet point 1, and reword "exception to the above" to "exception to the preceding point" or such.) (Straying off topic: do people confuse Arab and Arabic so often that the main MOS needs to explain the difference between them, as it does now, or could we move that point to a subpage?) I think the second point is unecessary for the same reasons as Trystan; if one does want to add "most", I note that one could say "in most reliable sources" more concisely than "in most of the reliable sources". For for point three, as Trystan has said, either formulation is fine, "neither is plausibly a violation of NPOV [and] both formulations are found in the MOS", in fact there's another "Wikipedia [verb]s" phrase in the first bullet point we're discussing: "Wikipedia should use the term..." (which one could trim to just "use the term..."). -sche (talk) 06:09, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
  • OK, will proceed with first point, seems uncontroversial
  • Second point:
    • "(write something in the encyclopedia) ...even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise" is in direct conflict with WP:V. WP:V is one of the three core content policies. so "is in conflict with core content policy" is a correct appreciation.
    • "in most reliable sources" could (and will by Murphy's law) be read as "in the most reliable sources", so incites to give precedence to less reliable sources. We're going for avoidance of confusion here – I'm no fan of overly long formulation either (I'd cut the whole sentence – in fact it contributes nothing), but "most of the" doesn't have this ambiguity.
    • reformulate as "... even when only covered by a minority of the reliable sources." would avoid the confusion too, so maybe that's preferable.
    • or, as "... even when only covered by recent reliable sources." shorter, more to the point, no bloat.
  • "Wikipedia <verb>" is not the problem. "Wikipedia favors" is: if Wikipedia favors something over something else it is not neutral, so direct conflict with WP:NPOV. The only "Wikipedia favors" sentence I see possible is "Wikipedia favors neutrality". --Francis Schonken (talk) 07:04, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
Both WP:V and WP:NPOV (including DUEWEIGHT) allow for giving more weight to the "best and most reliable sources". The best and most reliable sources recommend, as a general practice, respecting individuals' expressed gender identity when using gendered terms. The best and most reliable source for a specific person's gender identity is that person's self-identification (as quoted in reliable sources such as the mainstream media). All MOS:IDENTITY says is not to override the best sources with a less discriminate tally of gendered-language usage across every source that could be considered reliable. There is no conflict.--Trystan (talk) 14:39, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
Re. "All MOS:IDENTITY says is not to override the best sources with a less discriminate tally of gendered-language usage across every source that could be considered reliable." – that's what we want it to say, not what it actually says. It says "Wikipedia favors (some type of content), even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise".
Then of course deciding that a source is more reliable depending on what that content is (not in the MoS, but in Trystan's comment above) is even worse WP:V-wise. --Francis Schonken (talk) 15:53, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
I said nothing of the sort. The best and most reliable sources on this issue are determined by professional and scientific expertise (e.g., the American Psychological Association), not by their position on the issue. I was summarizing what they do in fact say, not providing criteria on how to select them.--Trystan (talk) 18:00, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
You are suggesting a broad generalization based on one aspect suggesting American Psychological Association might have an opinion on other subjects. My concern is that backwards rewriting of historical events. We have a name (and gender representation) associated with historical events. To say that American Psychological Association, now, has an opinion on a name or gender dating back years, decades or longer, and that overrides what was written at the time will cause wikipedia to disagree with those historical sources. That's a lot of overriding because of one expert. Trackinfo (talk) 16:48, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
We often disagree with historical sources when they turn out to be wrong. We have 76 years of sources treating Pluto as a planet, but even in historical contexts, we make it clear that it is a dwarf planet that was previously considered to be a planet. We don't write in a way that suggests it was a planet and then stopped being one.
Where a person's previous gender expression is relevant, it can be made clear what gender they represented as at a given time while also respecting their later statement of their gender identity.--Trystan (talk) 15:15, 28 June 2015 (UTC)
All you want the MoS to say is "...follow the self-designation as contained in the most up-to-date reliable sources" instead of "...Wikipedia favors self-designation, even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise". Is that a correct summary? Anyway less charged with hyperboles that go against the grain of WP:V/WP:NPOV/WP:OR, and also using a language that is more becoming to a style guide. --Francis Schonken (talk) 18:48, 28 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I have mentioned this elsewhere, but I think it worth repeating here... There are actually two issues being conflated here... 1) the issue of what name to use in any given article or list, and 2) the issue of what gender pronouns to use. I think it would be helpful to separate these two issues. Names do not limit a person's identity. A woman can be named "Bruce" and a man can be named "Caitlyn". We can thus treat a change of name that stems from gender identity the same way we treat a change of name that stems from any other cause (such as a marriage, adoption, or simple desire of the person to use another name) - by following the sources and using the appropriate name in the appropriate historical context. As for gender pronouns... that is a more debatable issue, but one that we have a workable solution for: avoid all pronouns (don't use "he" or "she"... use "Jenner"). Blueboar (talk) 15:47, 28 June 2015 (UTC)
  • The biggest problem with this, if you ask me, is that MOS:IDENTITY is located in the MoS, which is a mere guideline. I'm not sure why it is located in the MoS at all. In fact, it would make much more sense to spin it off as a policy of its own. RGloucester 14:56, 29 June 2015 (UTC)
    I would support spinning IDENTITY off as a policy of its own, but I think it's understandable why it has been covered in the MOS (and I think it's reasonable for it to stay in the MOS in the interim, until such time as it's spun off as a policy of its own). As I wrote a while ago, "does this person profess the Jewish faith?" and "is this person transgender" are content questions which must be answered by reliable sources (and in both cases, the most reliable source for the information is the person themselves, and Wikipedia requires self-identification), while "should this person be referred to as a 'Jewess' or a 'Jewish woman'?" and "should this person be referred to as 'he' or 'she'?" are plausibly viewed as style questions, as can be seen from the fact that reliable sources from 1843 saying Foobar Smith killed "two Jewesses" can be used to support the sentence, in our article on Smith, that he killed two Jewish women — the sources verify the content, and we're just choosing which words to use to convey the content. Likewise, if sources from before Manning transitioned said "Bradley Manning visited France and he speaks French", but then sources from after Manning transitioned discovered and published "Chelsea Manning previously claimed she spoke French, but in fact she does not", Wikipedia wouldn't state "Bradley Manning speaks Frenchold source; Chelsea Manning does notnew source" — sufficiently many editors would be able to recognize the mathematical identity of Bradley=Chelsea to recognize that the new source was correcting the old source, not making an unrelated claim about a different person. (But as I noted: A thing that is "just a question of style" is sometimes dismissed as unimportant, with the implication that any answer to the question is "fine"; it should be clear that these questions of style are not unimportant, and some possible answers, such as "refer to that person as a 'Jewess'", may cause great offensive.)
    How would one go about elevating and moving IDENTITY? Start an RFC "Should the guideline currently located at MOS:IDENTITY be moved to Wikipedia:Foobar and adopted as a policy?" ? (WP:PROPOSAL seems to suggest doing that, but then says consensus is rarely accomplished that way, which leaves me unsure.) -sche (talk) 19:23, 29 June 2015 (UTC)
I suppose Blueboar's suggestion could work:
  • "Manning visited France, and Manning speaks French"
  • "Manning previously claimed speaking French, but in fact doesn't speak the language"
  • "Manning claimed to speak Frenchold source; In fact, Manning does notnew source
Let's not overcomplicate. --Francis Schonken (talk) 20:39, 29 June 2015 (UTC)
If you want to change "Wikipedia favors" to something like "give precedence to", I have no objection. (I do note, however, that WP:POLICY says "policies, guidelines, and process pages themselves are not part of the encyclopedia proper. Consequently, they do not generally need to conform with the content standards. It is therefore not necessary [...] to phrase Wikipedia procedures or principles in a neutral manner".) -sche (talk) 19:23, 29 June 2015 (UTC)
WP:POLICY is a guideline.
"WP:NPOV is non-negotiable, and the principles upon which it is based cannot be superseded by other policies or guidelines, nor by editor consensus" (see quote above) is policy.
Yeah there's no policy reason why a style guide shouldn't display stylistically bad choices – for me that's just a common sense argument. If you want to argue "bad style is better while WP:POLICY allows us", yeah, sure, go ahead. But don't expect me to fall for such argument. –Francis Schonken (talk) 20:39, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

The former

"... In such cases, Wikipedia favors self-designation, even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise."

has now been changed to (adding bolding to show difference):

"... In such cases, give precedence to self-designation, even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise."

I propose to update this further to:

"... In such cases, give precedence to self-designation as explicited in reliable sources that contain up-to-date information on such self-designation." (as contained in the most up-to-date reliable sources).

...same guidance, but with less of a "defy WP:RS" spirit (plus other advantages described above). --Francis Schonken (talk) 05:20, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

OK for this then? --Francis Schonken (talk) 09:00, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
Updated the proposed phrasing a bit to make it clearer (an up-to-date source that ignores the self-designation should not be followed in this respect). --Francis Schonken (talk) 11:56, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
I think there would need to be some alternative way of expressing what "but don't look at usage" is trying, perhaps ineffectively, to convey. I like -sche's approach above. It could be something like "...In such cases, give precedence to self-designation as reported in reliable sources. While a specific person's self-expressed gender identity is a question of content, use of pronouns and gendered terms is a question of style on which an article may differ from the sources used. Any person whose gender might be questioned..."--Trystan (talk) 15:55, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, think that'll work. --Francis Schonken (talk) 06:35, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
So no-one thinks I'm taking credit for someone else's ideas, I point out that the "give precedence to" snippet which I implemented and which seems to be being described above as my language is actually what Francis proposed; I just implemented it because it had agreement here but no-one had bothered to implement it. :b
I'm wary of changing "even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise", because even if the intention is not to change the effect of the guideline, I think a wording like "as [explicited/reported] in [up-to-date/...] reliable sources" would lead more people to think that the guideline was saying the same thing that many people erroneously think WP:AT says, "[the only criterion is,] count how many reliable sources use each name, and title the article whatever name the largest number of sources use".
I don't mind having the MOS specify / explain "while a specific person's self-expressed gender identity is a question of content, use of pronouns and gendered terms is a question of style on which an article may differ from the sources used", if people agree that that interpretation is correct. It would certainly help explain things to the small percent of commenters who, in most of the trans BLP RMs I've seen so far, question if / suggest that "using other pronouns/names/synonyms violates WP:V!". -sche (talk) 18:12, 6 July 2015 (UTC)

Exploring possibilities to turn transgender guidance into policy[edit]

Re. "How would one go about elevating and moving IDENTITY?" I started a separate subsection. I see a few possibilities:

  1. Write a separate page with the guidance as you would like it. Put a {{essay}} or {{proposal}} template on top of it. Announce it on this page, and ask cooperation. Once the people interested in it come to a rough consensus that the text is workable, try RfC to elevate to guideline, or (but that would probably be a next step) policy.
  2. Propose it on a policy talk page for insertion in that policy. I'd choose WP:NPOV, with something like "Wikipedia is neutral to the choices people make w.r.t. their identity, religion, and preferences, and reports these without bias as expressed by themselves and recorded in reliable sources ... etc..." Again, try to reach a rough consensus on the talk page on wording, and where in the policy it should go. When that is possible → RfC (with announcement here, on the BLP policy talk page etc.)
  3. There are other possibilities (e.g. in a first step see if it can be added to WP:NPOVFAQ or WP:NPOV tutorial and from there to policy), and opportunities (e.g. group forces with the recently concluded initiative at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject LGBT studies#"Homosexual" vs. "Gay" – Wikipedia policy?) --Francis Schonken (talk) 20:39, 29 June 2015 (UTC)
Note: I placed a {{update}} template at Wikipedia:WikiProject LGBT studies/Guidelines#Transgender and intersex people, which seems to be lagging much behind. Maybe start to find consensus on updating the project-level guidance first, and see whether it can taken to a higher level of guidance from there? --Francis Schonken (talk) 08:59, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
I am not sure that there is enough support for IDENTITY to promote it... so I think the first step would be a wiki-wide (heavily advertized) RFC, asking whether the community wants IDENTITY to be promoted or left as an essay. Blueboar (talk) 11:10, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
  1. WP:IDENTITY is MoS, so currently at guideline level (not essay level).
  2. RfC for promotion to a higher level is unlikely to succeed before the text is somewhat tailored to such level. It's about common sense exceptions, easily applied for guidelines (as illustrated by some of the examples mentioned in this discussion), while a policy text should be written so that it is more resilient against exceptions (that means more detail about particular circumstances and/or more axing around overarching principles – these are choices that need to be made for a policy text, and hashing out such choices, checking against BLP, NPOV, and other existing policies, etc are usually better done before a more-or-less consensus text is presented via RfC - attempting to finetune a text by means of an RfC has already proved too often to be WP:SNOW) --Francis Schonken (talk) 11:56, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
You might find WP:PROPOSAL worth reading. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:31, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
and/or Wikipedia:How to contribute to Wikipedia guidance. --Francis Schonken (talk) 11:34, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
@Francis Schonken: The current edition has been updated by -sche to a new section (Wikipedia:WikiProject LGBT studies/Guidelines#How to write about transgender, non-binary, and intersex people), per discussion regarding the use of the term "transgendered" that the user brought up. – Zumoarirodoka (talk) 12:32, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
Yes; that's largely a different issue from the one we've been discussing here, but if we were drafting a policy on trans subjects, I guess the language I added to WP:LGBT based on discussion would be appropriate to cover in the same place. Actually, perhaps MOS:IDENTITY's guidance on names and pronouns is not the subject of enough unity to elevate it to a policy at this time, but perhaps the WP:LGBT guidance on using words like "transgendered" is uncontroversial enough and subject to enough style guides' unanimity that it would be appropriate to elevate to guideline status on some MOS subpage? -sche (talk) 18:41, 7 July 2015 (UTC)

General discussion[edit]

  • For articles where the gender is important, and where the current publicly expressed gender identity would cause unjustified confusion, I think using their publicly expressed gender identity from that historic time frame is the way to go. For articles where that is not important, I'm really not sure. So in this case, because the gender of an athlete in the Olympics is important, I would say continue to use the historic male gender identity in those articles. But if we aren't talking about an athlete, I'm not sure. Say its an article about a company that talks about the CEO. On the one hand, the CEO's public gender identity at the time they were CEO may be interesting to some people. But on the other, it is at least somewhat common for people to say their current gender identity long predates when they started publicly expressing it, and we should try to be respectful of that. It also wouldn't be nearly as confusing as in the athlete example. I don't know how this would be turned into a guideline either. Monty845 02:49, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Well, gender is important for sports, as most disciplines use it to create separate categories - usually for good reason. Learning about transgender people competing in sports with a category different from their self-identified gender will be more and more common, now that it is becoming less of a taboo. It makes sense to register a specific sentence in the guideline, but it should be based on the same criteria of the current MOS:IDENTITY. If the topic is confusing to some people, the guideline could help editors deal with it in a consistent way. Diego (talk) 09:33, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • For a historical listing on a page of athletic events, the name seems more relevant than the gender. As except for co-ed athletic events (equestrian?), it is assumed that everyone in that particular listing is of the same sex (or identified as such at the time of the competition). I was looking for an example of a prominent cisgender athlete who changed names during their career, and hit upon Muhammad Ali. On the list of heavyweight boxing champions he is listed as Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay) for the year 1964. I think doing this on articles referring to Jenner's athletic career - i.e., Caitlyn Jenner (Bruce Jenner) - with a footnote about the gender change, might work. Funcrunch (talk) 03:00, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    A lot of tables don't have that kind of room. You also have to take context into it. For way more than half of Ali's boxing career he was known as Muhammad Ali, not Cassius Clay. Same with Abdul-Jabbar (Lew Alcindor). In their field they had dual names and it makes sense to choose the more prominent one in their field. Jenner in sports was only known by one name, Bruce Jenner. The sports fields should reflect that. Fyunck(click) (talk) 04:59, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    I can tell you right now, every table involved in this case has room for it. So that's a red herring. Skyerise (talk) 12:05, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    They wouldn't in tennis draws... I'm not as familiar with wikipedia track&field nomenclature. Fyunck(click) (talk) 17:17, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    An interesting precedent. I hadn't thought of that angle. Good idea. --Jayron32 03:05, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Funcrunch has it right. When the old name is reasonably expected and perhaps needed for context, include it in parentheses. Otherwise, use current name. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 03:18, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Well, I think that might be because of Wikipedia's specific preference/obsession for the "common name" to be used, rather than the accurate name (who cares if the entire world calls it Myanmar, its official name? Common name is Burma!!! No discussion!). In the sports-reference results from 1960, he is Cassius Clay, and his sports-reference profile (based on his 1960 results) he is also Cassius Clay (with Muhammad Ali listed under "other names"). МандичкаYO 😜 03:19, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Given how WP:RS are treating Myanmar in the past year or so, it is likely ripe for a rename, but that is neither here not there. MOS:IDENTITY clearly lays out an exception for gender identity, the current discussion is merely how to clarify that guideline for articles outside of the subject article itself. --Jayron32 03:29, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
Are we seriously comparing a slave state's top-down impressed archaicising spelling of "Burma", which incidentally is pronounced like the word "Burma", with the individual lives of human beings? Ogress smash! 13:19, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    • That's a good compromise, but shouldn't the name by which the subject was known at that time come first? Epic Genius (talk) 17:03, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I think gender should reflect the choice of the subject (or in all cases should strive to be neutral where it interferes with proper continuity), but the name should reflect that which the subject was known by at the time. This also raises a question regarding gender-specific achievements. Ie, if Jenner's record was for male decathalon, would we use female pronouns in these cases? - Floydian τ ¢ 03:45, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    The guideline says "yes", if that's the person's preference. That's the aproach most respecting WP:BLP. Confusion about a woman participating in men's category could be handled by noting that Jenner is a transgender person, which IMHO is relevant in that context. Diego (talk) 12:06, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    That Jenner came out as transgendered in 2015 is not relevant to an Olympic competition 30 years prior though. And changing the name from the 1976 events, even to add a parenthetical or footnote introduces anachronisms that, frankly, do the encyclopedia a disservice. If we view Wikipedia as a serious reference, then re-writing history is outside our purview. Resolute 18:37, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Ah but see trans-awareness is the new white liberal guilt of today. It's more important that we slaughter the English language in an attempt to not possibly offend someone who lived for 60 years as a male, than it is to be factually accurate and list the name and gender they were publicly identified by at that time. Political correctness be damned, until June 1st they were a male named Bruce Jenner. Today that is different, but 3 days ago they identified as a man, so 30 years ago they most certainly were a man named Bruce Jenner. Unfortunately a case like this brings out the advocates with their cause. - Floydian τ ¢ 14:37, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

* There is a precedent for using names that the athlete used at the time of their athletic achievements. Ron Atest (Metta World Peace), Mike Stanton (Giancarlo Stanton), Domanick Davis (Domanick Williams), Olivier Saint-Jean (Tariq Abdul Wahad), Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul Jabbar) and Cassius Clay (Muhammad Ali) did not have their records retroactively changed. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:02, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

  • In my opinion, use female wherever possible except in the cases where it would be likely to lead to confusion or implicates something that is not the case. (Her former marriage, at the least. Possibly her athletic accomplishments and her appearance on the Wheaties boxes as well) In the cases where her female name is likely to lead to confusion or false implications, use Bruce Jenner (Caitlyn Jenner). AddWittyNameHere (talk) 07:42, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • In sentences where female pronouns would cause problems, a common guideline is to use the last name (i.e. "Jenner competed in male categories" rather than "she competed in male categories"). Using the parenthesis is a good idea when the full name is needed - it's the most informative. Diego (talk) 09:33, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Yes, I was speaking mostly of her full name. Names are more likely to lead to confusion and should have a more standardized solution; for pronouns there are multiple valid ways to work around issues—by replacing the pronoun with the surname, by rearranging the sentence so it makes sense ("became a parent" v. "became a father"). Probably more ways to deal with pronoun-related issues that are neither confusing nor insensitive, but those are the two most obvious. AddWittyNameHere (talk) 17:24, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

I strongly encourage all participants in this thread to read all of the Wikipedia:Gender identity essay - and in particular Retroactivity and Common name, which is the topic at hand. It works as a FAQ for MOS:IDENTITY, dealing with the most common objections to it, and reflecting the values that were used to craft the current guideline in defense of BLPs. Would it be a good idea to post it at the lead of this discussion, above Option 1? If there are no objections, I'll post the link there. Diego (talk) 10:14, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

  • The only problem I have with that is that it makes too many presumptions on the part of the transgendered person. For some transgendered people, the act of "coming out" as one gender may be merely the revelation to the public of a gender which they have had their whole life. However, the experience of transgendered people (like all people) is diverse, and the experience of one person cannot be generalized across all people. Gender can be a fluid concept, and while for one person, the act of "revelation" may be what is happening, other people may genuinely be one gender for some phases of their life, and may genuinely be another gender for other phases of their life. It isn't for us to decide, in any one particular case, what gender means to all people at all times. Sure, for some the act is merely a public revelation of a life-long gender (as noted in the essay), but for others the situation is more complex. We're also considering, in that essay, the implicit notion that people's experience exist only on the binary state of one of two genders; or perhaps on a continuum between those two genders. Human experience cannot be reduced to a single axis on any trait; we need to be careful not to minimize the experience of those who identify as a third gender or the genderqueer. My concern with that essay is that it's advice is not inclusive of the range of human experience, and we should NOT assume that all people who "come out" as trangendered are doing so for the same reason as all others. If a person genuinely identified as a different gender at a different phase of their life, we should not minimize that experience any more than a person who identified as one gender, different from their public persona. Both experiences should be considered "valid" (insofar as it isn't any of my or your or anyone's job to determine validity for others in a situation such as this.) --Jayron32 11:03, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I don't see the essay as excluding the genderqueer nor assuming a gender binary; even if many examples deal with the case of transgender persons, the main theme is that of self-identity, whichever that is. It's true that we shouldn't soehorn all experiences into a common category, but that's not what the essay is about, quite the contrary. We do need a standard on how to handle our "default" way to write, so to say, and for transgender people (the topic of this discussion) the most sensible way is well handled by the external guidelines on which our MOS:IDENTITY guideline is based.
Exceptions to the guideline may still be handled case by case. If we find evidence that one particular person doesn't consider themselves to have always been the same gender, the writing for their biography could be handled on the light of the particular expressed self-identification of that person at different times. The problem with Option 1 above is that it encourages doing this even for people who self-identify as always having been the same gender. Diego (talk) 11:23, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
I very much appreciate Jayron's commentary about transgender people having different gender identity expressions. And on that point, it is also worth noting that while the term transgender is commonly used in a restrictive sense (for cases such as Chelsea Manning or Caitlyn Jenner), it is also an umbrella term for gender variant people. Because the biology of gender (including the causes of transsexualism topic) is still so heavily debated, with so much of the debate being inconclusive, and the complexities of gender variance, I remind myself to be cautious about making gender identity automatically a matter of biology. For many transgender people, they absolutely believe that there is a genetic basis to their gender identity; for other transgender people, they don't.
On another note: What should we do in cases like this edit, where CloudKade11 changed the label of "father" to "mother" regarding Jenner? How do we know that Jenner identifies as a mother? Flyer22 (talk) 11:55, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict)I think, however, that we miss the basic premise of these discussions when we focus on issues like "biology" and "choice" and "genetics" and "environment" and all the rest. The implicit assumption in the above (well meaning) discussion is the same as the transphobic people use to justify their bigotry: They choose to mistreat someone based on the fact that their identity is not valid based on concepts of biology; that a person "chooses" a certain gender, and that choice therefore means that others get to impart "consequences" based on that choice, etc. The first, and again, well meaning attempt is to refute those notions by saying "no, it really does have a genetic or biological basis" or "it is not something people choose". While well meaning, that misses the point entirely. The point (and excuse the emphasis, but I am doing this for clarity, not to shout or be rude), is that people are afforded dignity for no other reason than they are people. When you find someone mistreating a person because they claim that their biology makes them one gender, and they've (in the mind of the transphobic person) chosen to disobey their biology, and you counter that with "no they haven't, their biology and not their choice makes them who they are, even for transgendered people", you've focused on the wrong issue, and ultimately do a disservice to the proper resolution of the conflict. The response is "people are afforded the same basic level of dignity no matter who they are, and that includes the same rights to self-determination and identity that are afforded to all, irrespective of all considerations". That's the end of the debate. That's the point we need to get across. When we make dignity dependent on why a person is the way they are, that opens the possibility that there will be people who don't qualify for dignity based on your debated definitions. Dignity is not optional. --Jayron32 12:19, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
Jayron32 (WP:Pinging you in case you miss this comment), I know that it's common for transphobic people to use biology against transgender people (I've seen it enough times on Wikipedia and elsewhere), and I've heard all of those types of arguments. I brought up the biology matter above because this post by Diego Moya mentions biology. Your "11:03, 2 June 2015 (UTC)" post also made me want to address biology and the fact that gender variance is complex; there are some genderqueer people, for example, who will state that they choose to be a gender and that they actively rebel against the gender binary. I simply wanted to add on to your point about not generalizing transgender people; what I meant is that it's not always simple to say what made a person transgender. Some people (including some transgender people) argue a biological basis; other people (including some transgender people) argue that it's not a biological basis, and then there are the ones that argue that it's nature and nurture (a combination of both, not one or the other). That's basically all that I was stating: Gender identity expressions do not always form the same way. Flyer22 (talk) 19:38, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
See this archived discussion at MOS talk page. BTW, when infoboxes can't properly summarize a complex situation, isn't it common practice to simply remove the problematic fact and explain it in prose? Diego (talk) 12:17, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
I think the edit should be reverted or removed entirely, and CloudKade11 notified of this discussion, since there's still a huge debate on this. Epic Genius (talk) 17:05, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • If anyone seriously wishes to challenge or change Wikipedia's established position on this, I would strongly suggest starting by studying the history of our articles on Chelsea Manning, Wendy Carlos, and Chaz Bono as well as the extensive discussions about the naming of each on multiple noticeboards. --Guy Macon (talk) 12:11, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • We really need an official FAQ that summarizes the previous conversations about the guideline, otherwise we'll be revisiting it for every new variation of its application. Diego (talk) 12:17, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Well, I think the issue is that if this had been discussed before, it is not self-evident from the way the existing guidance is written at MOS:IDENTITY. The point of the discussion is not to overturn any aspect of that well-crafted guideline, it is to clarify as there is some ambiguity. The point of the discussion is to hammer out how to handle issues which did not come up in the cases like Chaz Bono or Chelsea Manning; neither of them competed in sports where their results were awarded to them under their prior names, a situation which we need to clarify for the current hot topic, but to do so in a way where we don't have to debate it again in the future. It is because this situation has not been clarified for policy's sake that the discussion is necessary. Once this matter is settled, we won't have to deal with this one. That doesn't mean some new, novel problem we hadn't thought up yet won't arise in the future that we hadn't yet considered. The process is not ever going to end; that's not a bad thing. Not because we're rehashing settled policy (which this discussion is not, MOS:IDENTITY is not under challenge), we're dealing with situations we hadn't the foresight to clarify previously. We'll have situations in the future similarly as well. This is just the way it goes. --Jayron32 12:27, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── But we have cases that cover transgender identity in the context of their previous careers, like Linda Wachowski and Danielle Bunten Berry, and which were taken into account when drafting the guideline. Current consensus is to use the latest expressed identity and gender pronouns even for the periods where the public identity was a different one (and even on articles about their careers), handling any potential confusion through careful wording.

If the goal is how to clarify the guideline on how its current wording applies in some particular cases, it cannot override its purpose - the clarification must be compatible with what we already have. Or if this discussion wants to change that existing consensus, it needs to address the arguments that lead to it, not merely ignore them nor assert that they are no longer valid. Diego (talk) 12:52, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

  • I'm not doubting whether the discussion happened before. The issue is the current state of the guideline has some ambiguity. Insofar as the ambiguity exists now, a discussion is needed now to resolve the ambiguity now. When this discussion concludes, this ambiguity will be resolved to the community's satisfaction, and the wording of the guideline will be changed to be less ambiguous. --Jayron32 13:46, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Any person whose gender might be questioned should be referred to by the pronouns, possessive adjectives, and gendered nouns (for example "man/woman", "waiter/waitress", "chairman/chairwoman") that reflect that person's latest expressed gender self-identification. This applies in references to any phase of that person's life, unless the subject has indicated a preference otherwise. What is ambiguous about that? The people arguing to use male pronouns in Jenner's case are arguing for a radical change in the guideline, not a clarification. If you're referring to what name should be used, then you're right, what name to use is not explicitly spelled out - although we have precedents in similar situations, and there seems to be an evolving agreement towards using both names (one of them in parentheses). Diego (talk) 16:31, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    No, I'm with you on the pronoun issue. The deal is in articles such as the 1976 Summer Olympics; especialy on mere entries in tables, where the pronoun issue wouldn't come up at all, do we use "Caitlyn Jenner" or "Bruce Jenner" or "Caitlyn (Bruce) Jenner" or some other identifier. The ambiguity is minor, and only exists in specific historic examples, where there is not a narrative to follow to explain the situation. --Jayron32 17:52, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    Thank you, I understand now better your request for clarification. There seem to be two different aspects to it - whether we should use the previous name, and whether we should use the assigned-at-birth pronouns (sorry for the not PC term). The latter is settled from all the long previous discussions and crafting of the guideline, and would require a very strong new consensus to overturn. The former is open to discussion, and would make for a good adition to the guideline. I think Gaijin42's suggestion below to use the previous name where either gender or the exact name are relevant to the topic (noting that the person as changed names since) may be a viable approach, and compatible with how name changes are handled in other situations. Diego (talk) 18:23, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I don't believe that there are any examples of athletic records being changed when an athlete change their name. It would be quite confusing for a reader to see "Caitlyn Jenner" under 1976 Olympic Gold Medal winners. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:33, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
I tend to agree with what fun crunch pointed out above-(a parenthetical ref to old name if needed)...but I would also like to know if it would be acceptable or correct to say something like;"Competing as Bruce Jenner, Caitlyn won the gold medal"? (talk) 14:57, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
Yes, that is valid by the guideline. Diego (talk) 16:54, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
I just think that there's no precedent. Keep in mind that I am solely referring to athletic records, not other aspects of Caitlyn Jenners life. I just think that we should stick to common practice. When Chad Johnson changed his name to Chad Ochocinco, Oregon State didn't update their record books to reflect the change. There are many examples of athletes changing their names, and having their records appear as the name they competed under. (talk) 15:01, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

It seems that we have to distinguish between the biological and the juridical aspects. In a strictly biological sense, gender is a component that can never be changed (the difference in regards to male and female chromosomes). For example, if the medical record is considered, an individual once born a male will always remain a male, no matter what surgical operations the individual has gone through.
Individual's name, however, is a juridical matter. When it comes to that, I think we should use whichever name in force at the particular moment (e.g. Bruce Jenner in 1976, Caitlyn Jenner in 2015). In technical terms, I think that "gender as a subjective experience" is mostly manifested through the choice of name, and by respecting this right we'll afford dignity towards these individuals the best.
In other words, individuals may choose between their "gender identity" (subjective experience), not between their gender (which is an immutable biological component). Cheers! Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 16:03, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

Please see the arguments laid out at Really a man and Legal name, those concerns have been addressed in the current manual of style. Diego (talk) 16:35, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • In this case, the personal preference of this person seems to be to use male pronouns for their past and to start using female pronouns in the future. Because of that, I think that Wikipedia should likewise use male pronouns for this person's past, and female pronouns for the future. Multiple media outlets got statements from this person about their preferred pronoun usage. It is unusual that in this case we have guidance for our manual of style here.
This is supporting evidence to manage these kinds of things on a case by case basis. Reform the RfC to address cases in which there is no supplementary information. This is a poor test case for examining the issue because there is a large amount of contextual publication on this stylistic issue for this case. Blue Rasberry (talk) 18:08, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I'm not considering anything. I have no horse in the race, and just want to see the text clear at MOS:IDENTITY so we can point people in the direction the community wishes. I'm open to any and all well-explained alternatives. My two ideas were only the two I came up with, I am but one person, and not that smart of one; I fully expect people to have better ideas than I. --Jayron32 19:54, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
@Jayron32: I ask because I don't wish to refactor you. Is it okay if I go ahead and add a third option then? EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 20:15, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
So long as there's an explanation of the option in the introductory text so people know, in some useful detail, what they are voting on. --Jayron32 20:20, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

Ogress, I don't really like being labelled "transphobic"[5] (I assume you were pertaining to me since you referred to my comment) just because I happen to disagree. By "immutable biological component" I was simply pertaining to the different pair of chromosomes that males and females have, and in strictly medical sense that's what defines the gender. Neither do transgender studies disagree with this, but they emphasize "gender identity" (which I correctly reflected IMO). So what you found "transphobic" is actually supported by the very transgender studies. A quick look into the literature will confirm this. Should there have been misunderstanding, I hope this will help to sort it out.
Oh boy, why won't we just start using Finnish language instead? We've got only one pronoun for 3rd person singular, "hän", both for "she" and "he". ;-) Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 12:33, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

@Jayaguru-Shishya: First, I really think you'd benefit from reading the (not very long) really a man guidelines. It really covers a lot of ground quickly, with citation and after consensus. Also, this is not a pleasant conversation in general: people are saying very hurtful things about actual human beings, some of whom are doubtless editors here and in this very conversation, so I'm not going to dance around the subject. Second, I didn't say you were a transphobe, I said the idea was transphobic. And the idea is, in fact, transphobic and incorrect: gender is not immutable and, in a strictly medical sense, different chromosomes are not what define gender. Gender and sex are different, and even sex is far more complicated than "chromosomes": it includes sexual organs, secondary sex characteristics, hormones and other things. In fact, most people don't have any idea what their chromosomes are; do you know how often infertile couples discover that the reason they cannot have children is that one of them has the "incorrect" chromosomes for their sex and gender? The estimated percentage of intersexuals - persons whose chromosomes do not match their apparent sex - among the general population ranges from one to four percent. That's a lot of people. So let me ask you: if a transgender woman has female genitalia due to SRS, has estrogen and not testosterone in her system as a result, has female secondary characteristics like breasts, how is her sex "male"? It's not. And not a single thing about that has anything to do with her gender anyway. A transgender woman who has a fully male body in every way is still a woman. We don't check genitals in people unless we're about to engage in intercourse with them, and we definitely don't check genitals before deciding what pronouns to use. That's the remit of gender, not sex. Ogress smash! 13:07, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for your answer, Ogress. Sorry, I got mistaken that you were calling me "transphobic", but I am glad to hear you weren't :-) Anyway, I can assure you that I am not. I must admit though, that I never distinguished between the terms "gender" and "sex", but considered those more or less synonymous. It seems I was wrong. I just checked from a Finnish-English-Finnish dictionary, and the term "gender" is defined as follows:[6]
  1. Identification as male/masculine, female/feminine or something else, and association with a (social) role or set of behavioral and cultural traits, clothing, etc typically associated with one sex. (Compare gender role, gender identity.)
  2. The sociocultural phenomenon of the division of people into various categories such as "male" and "female", with each having associated clothing, roles, stereotypes, etc.
You are right. It must be the Finnish language that's causing confusion here on my part: in Finnish the word "sukupuoli" means both "gender" and "sex", and to emphasize the English meaning of "gender" as "gender identity" (number one above), we speak about "sukupuoli-identiteetti". So that explains why I was mistakenly using those two terms as synonyms (even the word "gender" already self-includes the identity aspect".
Did that make any sense? :-) Summa summarum, the distinction I was trying to make between "gender" and "gender identity" is no longer relevant. Thanks for correcting me! Cheers! Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 14:23, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
Jayaguru-Shishya, coming from this, well, if you read the Gender and Sex and gender distinction articles, you will see that it notes that the terms sex and gender are commonly used as synonyms. But, yes, Ogress and I (and a lot of other people) distinguish between them...and for good reason. Flyer22 (talk) 15:56, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
I don't know but according to Monash University, it's pretty much like Ogress stated above. Jayaguru-Shishya (talk) 16:54, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
According to most dictionaries, "gender" and "sex" are synonyms in English too. But because "gender" also means "gender identity" and "gender role," it is best to be extra specific in conversations in which it is relevant. The usage note at the American Heritage Dictionary explains it pretty well. Darkfrog24 (talk) 18:55, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── The bottom line here is that transgender subjects are usually forced to change their name. They deserve to be credited for all their past accomplishments under their new chosen name. It's simple enough to add footnotes explaining this along with a citation for the name change. All proposal to do otherwise essentially strip the subject of their right to be credited by the name by which they are currently designated for their past accomplishments. Crediting some accomplishments under their former name deprives them of direct credit for their accomplishments. Since it is so easy to use footnotes to clarify, those arguing against doing so seem to be expressing a deep-seated discomfort with gender change which has no place here. Skyerise (talk) 17:41, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

It may be un-related but the fight over Jenner's name is going to street signs as well. [7]. In this case changing the name would effect other people's lives from social security into to drivers licenses. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 20:09, 7 June 2015 (UTC)

TY especially Jayron32 for comments from 11:03, 2 June 2015 and Skyerise for the compelling "They deserve to be credited for all their past accomplishments.." argument. Part of me wonders how this may relate to all the women and occasional man that change their names in marriage or just for reason of some other preference?
A would agree that biography is of more importance than biology in determination of gender as related to the self but, beyond Jenner's claim that in an earlier phase of (bio) life that s/he wore female undergarments on occasion, is there any more evidence that she previously identified as a female or that, in the context of previous situations, that he (at that time) had identified as a man. I am concerned that we may be exerting wp:crystal to view a situation in Jenner's life of which we either are not or cannot be certain. I appreciated Jayron32's comments that different trans people have very different experiences and my immediate leaning particularly with "she"/"he" issues is that this might be applied differently with different people depending on whether or not the person identified with a gender that was suggested by the approximate 2% chromosome variance that typically dictates biological sex.
As far as name usage is concerned I think I would probably favour "Caitlyn (Bruce) Jenner", "Caitlyn (as Bruce) Jenner" or "Bruce (now Caitlyn) Jenner" in the context of previous sports articles and maybe other unless there is an argument otherwise.
When Daley Thompson (British hero) won the first of his Olympic gold medals this happened in a context that he and everyone else understood that the preceding athlete was the ("American hero") by name as "Bruce Jenner". In this context I agree with other editors that a wholesale replacement of the name would be inappropriate. GregKaye 14:14, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
Uh, Greg, have you read the article or any of the interviews? Jenner has stated that her female self-identification and gender dysphoria started at a young age. And transgender women who experience gender dysphoria starting at a young age don't ever "identify as a man", they "present as a man", that is, they do their best to pretend to be their "assigned gender" in order to get by in the world. Their gender self-identification is female usually from the time they understand the distinction between male and female. Jenner has confirmed in interviews that this was the case for her. Skyerise (talk) 14:46, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
In a subject that was new to me and I had only got as far as to go through a number of news reports a long with much of the article. I was also intrigued that the Kardiashian syblings repeatedly made reference to Bruce following announcements with use of male pronoun. Reports came across as indicating support but with significant surprise. In this context I appreciate your answer to my open question above.
I am still interested in the possibility that there may be different experiences up to a level of gender dysphoria as you have described. This would fit in with views presented by Jayron32 that: "Gender can be a fluid concept, and while for one person, the act of "revelation" may be what is happening, other people may genuinely be one gender for some phases of their life". At this point I appreciate that Jenner made very some strong statements in the interview but she also said things that only went as far as to say "My brain is much more female than it is male" 4minutes55secs. She also gave approval of the use of the male pronoun at the point of the interview. The important thing for me is that we treat a person as a person and I really don't know if this some of the content here would be anything that Jenner herself would be overly concerned with. Certainly in the future she is entitled to develop and present views in any way she sees fit.
I was concerned that unnecessarily long explanations were being applied (and made quick reply) but don't feel so strongly about this now. GregKaye 14:44, 13 June 2015 (UTC)

Clarification on the meaning of this proposal[edit]


An exception to the above is made for terms relating to gender identity. In such cases, Wikipedia favors self-designation, even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise. Any person whose gender might be questioned should be referred to by the pronouns, possessive adjectives, and gendered nouns (for example "man/woman", "waiter/waitress", "chairman/chairwoman") that reflect that person's latest expressed gender self-identification. This applies in references to any phase of that person's life, unless the subject has indicated a preference otherwise. Direct quotations may need to be handled as exceptions (in some cases adjusting the portion used may reduce apparent contradictions, and "[sic]" may be used where necessary).

I believe the definition of "Option 1" is to change this to:

An exception to the above is made for terms relating to gender identity. In such cases, Wikipedia favors self-designation, even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise. In an article whose subject is the individual person, any person whose gender might be questioned should be referred to by the pronouns, possessive adjectives, and gendered nouns (for example "man/woman", "waiter/waitress", "chairman/chairwoman") that reflect that person's latest expressed gender self-identification. This applies in references to any phase of that person's life, unless the subject has indicated a preference otherwise. Direct quotations may need to be handled as exceptions (in some cases adjusting the portion used may reduce apparent contradictions, and "[sic]" may be used where necessary). However, in articles about events involving early stages of the person's life, the gendered terms that match the gender used by most reliable sources for the appropriate phase should be used, even if no longer current.

The article Christine Jorgensen, an article about a trans woman, refers to Christine Jorgensen as she/her throughout. But an example of what option 1 says is that if there were an article about Christine Jorgensen's mother, (I'm not saying there is one; this is just a random example showing how I understand the definition of this option) the section relating to personal life and children Florence (CJ's mother) gave birth to would refer to CJ as "George" and "he". Any part of the definition of "Option 1" that I'm ignoring?? (I'm not saying I support this change; I'm merely trying to clarify what it means. Georgia guy (talk) 15:07, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

If this is what is being proposed (which is what many Supporters seem to be arguing for), it would be best to start a new proper RfC with a clearer question. The current thread is worded as a slight clarification of the guideline, but the !votes are calling for a radical restriction of its current scope. It's also unclear what is the scope of the proposed change: should it apply to just sports records? should it affect any article which is not the biography? should it apply to all content referring to the early stages of the person's life, even in the biography? People are supporting all those options which are not part of the original question. Diego (talk) 16:41, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
IMO it should only apply to portions where gender is important. competing in gendered sports, prior spouses were not involved in homosexual marriages, They did not retroactively become the mother of a child. etc This is quite a limited set of places where it matters. "Caitlin went to X elementary school" etc is fine because gender is not relevant to the vast majority of elements in a biography. At a minimum quality every place that matters with the parenthetical (presenting s a male, as Bruce, etc) but that can get very cumbersome. Gaijin42 (talk) 17:22, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
Any example?? When talking about a trans woman becoming a parent do you think we should say "She became a parent for the first time" or "She fathered her first child"?? Georgia guy (talk) 17:42, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
For that specific example, avoid gender all together and say "Jenner became a parent for the first time". But when talking about a specific interaction especially if it involves another persons actions or POV its more difficult ("Jenner was viewed as a father figure by the Kardashian girls, and tried to emulate their own Father's good traits)" or something along those lines is what I'm talking about. Jenner is entitled to their own gender identity, including retroactively (because they may have considered themselves female the entire time) but they are not entitled to retroactively change the experiences and interactions of others into ones that involved a woman. Such starts to encroach on BLP issues for the others involved. Gaijin42 (talk) 18:10, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
Yeah... that example is difficult because Jenner was their father, and now she's a woman. However, I agree that we should avoid unnecessary pronouns or even unnecessary first names. Epic Genius (talk) 21:32, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
Exactly. WP:MOS: "If a style or similar debate becomes intractable, see if a rewrite can make the issue moot."  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  16:48, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
Yep; I believe MOS:IDENTITY at one point even spelled out that rather than saying things like "he gave birth" one should go with "he became a parent", although it seems it no longer does (which is fine, it's common sense). -sche (talk) 21:34, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

For a point of reference of (OK its just my opinion) the stupidity of this policy carried not even to its extreme, check out Talk:High jump#Caitlyn Jenner and Talk:Decathlon#Caitlyn Jenner. Trackinfo (talk) 09:16, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

A lot of people in these discussions are making statements like "Jenner was viewed as a father figure" as if that's going to make people's brains explode - it is fine as is. When reading the article, readers may discover that (for example) Caitlyn Jenner lived much of her life as a man. That's fine. It's not like it's going to cause aneurysms. No one is going to be harmed. It's a little unusual but c'mon, there's a lot of transgender people in the world. There's wayyyy too much weight being placed on speech at Wikipedia, as if what we write here at Wikipedia is going to destroy the world. Just respect people's gender and name choices like we already do with most people. There's relatively little fuss given for most other people who don't use their birth names. IMO, there's zero need to avoid pronouns or skip names - that's just going to be weird. And changing C's old name at the athletic's pages is seemingly causing people to lose their minds... guys, chill. Caitlyn Jenner won awards in men's sports. This isn't going to change anything in the sports world. OMG, was K-C a LESBIAN MARRIAGE?!?!? is first, not likely to happen ever, and second, is covered by the information in the article that Caitlyn publicly transitioned at the age of 65. This is like a drama in a teacup because Caitlyn is a woman and hence uses female pronouns. Trans folk exist and it's seriously not difficult, despite this page exploding, to just handle it. Ogress smash! 10:16, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
From a relativist point of view, "Caitlyn is a woman" is only true for some people. It's true for me, being familiar with TG people and issues, but I can't pretend that everyone in the world agrees with that, and it's not Wikipedia's job to force the world to go along with it. There's a difference between choosing, by consensus as a project, to respect Jenner's gender identity, but it doesn't extend to every possible alteration people can come up with. This one-size-fits-all approach cannot work. Different TG people approach this sort of issue differently, and the facts of particular circumstances even in the same subjects life differ. From a factual standpoint certain things should not be changed, because it distorts history.

I have no problem with Jenner's article saying "Jenner won [insert award info, from when Jenner was publicly identified as male]". We get into problems of multiple kinds when this is "She won [insert same]". We run into even more problems when the article on the medal itself is changed to read: Winner of the [year] medal was Caitlyn Jenner" instead of "Bruce Jenner" text in a piped link to the Caitlyn Jenner article. It's a falsehood from the perspective of virtually everyone but TG language reform activists. Even if I were one myself (and my usage in my personal life actually matches that of one, except where I know the TG individual in question does not her/himself agree with the now-customary usage for TG people), that fact would not change and I'd have to come to the same conclusion. A desire to see the English language change, and for the societal pressures and psychology behind particular language usages to change, doesn't mean they already have changed. Wikipedia is written in 2015 English for 2015 people, not in what we [or some subset of we] would hope is some future English for a future audience.

We all understand that you and several others here want "she" and "Caitlyn" in every single place, but this can't reasonably happen; your motivations for this change to be taken that far, and the problems that arise from it, are at odds with Wikipedia's purpose and the needs of the audience. This is turning into one of the most obvious, though not most weighty, WP:NPOV problems on the whole encyclopedia.

Anyway, I agree that the Jenner article should use "she", and consistently refer to the subject under the current name. But there's clearly not a consensus that this should extend to banning constructions like "Competing as a male, and under the name Bruce, Jenner won [insert medal here]" where this seems it best serves the readers, much less to engaging in revisionist denialism on sport related pages and suggesting that a woman named Caitlyn won men's sports competitions. But of course I'm just some ignorant transphobe mansplainer. I couldn't possibly be a well-informed, SF Bay Area egalitarian with waaay more than average genderqueer friends, who doesn't believe logic has genitals, chromosomes, or a gender identity. Sarcasm aside, I'm of course aware that my own reasoning on this could have imperfections. But at least I'm making an effort. Most of what I'm seeing from the other side is a circular reasoning pattern of proof by assertion. You can't simply keep restating "she has a right" and "the only correct way to view this is...", without actually responding to and refuting the responses and refutations that have already been provided against your assertions. That's not an argument, it's just noise. (I'm addressing the entire "do it the TG language reform way, or else" side of the debate, not your posts especially.)  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  16:44, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

See BBC's article about Renee Richards if it helps [8] ("She was captain of the men's tennis team at Yale University" is similar to "Competing in male categories, and under the name Bruce, Jenner won [insert medal here]", which could be allowed in an article). It mentions Jenner as "Bruce Jenner [Caitlyn Jenner]". We now have the argument about high quality WP:SOURCEs supporting the same rules codified in WP:MOSIDENTITY. Diego (talk) 08:41, 28 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 3 cleanup[edit]

@Jayron32 and EvergreenFir: and everyone: Option 3 says "(formerly Bruce Jenner)", which is unnecessarily ambiguous. It's unclear whether that's formerly with respect to 1976 or to present. A reader could figure it out, but we should avoid the need to figure it out if we can. The way to do that is with "(then Bruce Jenner)". I think this can be changed without affecting any existing !votes, as it's only a language improvement, not a change of concept. ―Mandruss  19:09, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

@Mandruss: My first reaction is that this is a great suggestion. While I'd prefer "then known as", I know that's too much. My thought process on that is that some trans folks would say "I've always been FOOBAR_CURRENT_NAME, people just called me FOOBAR_OLD_NAME back then". But I am probably over-thinking it. I would be fine with changing it to "then" instead of "formerly". EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:16, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
Unless I'm mistaken, "formerly" has the same problem, so "then" is no worse in that respect. ―Mandruss  19:20, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
I suppose it does. Just been thinking on it in general. Again, no opposition to the change. It's shorter, clearer, and addresses the issues you raised. It's a good idea. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:41, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
I'm not particularly hung up on details. My support for such a notion is that the general concept is good; I'm not going to let grammar get in the way of doing the right thing. --Jayron32 00:11, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
While there are many trans folks who would say that they were always the gender with which they now identify, I seriously doubt many would say that they were always the name that they have now chosen. Funcrunch (talk) 03:28, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────Yes check.svg DoneMandruss  07:59, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

How sources are referring to the records matter, and what they are stating[edit]

Like I noted at Talk:Caitlyn Jenner, I follow MOS:IDENTITY; I think it's important that we follow it. That stated, when it comes to the records Jenner set, an approach to analyze is this article by regarding the ESPY Award that Jenner will be receiving. That article refers to Jenner with male pronouns when addressing the athletic records, but notes that "the decision to publicly come out as a transgender woman took a different kind of courage and acceptance of one's self. To celebrate that bravery, ESPN today announced that Jenner will be presented with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at The 2015 ESPYS Presented by Capital One." Going by this Twitter post by Jenner, she is excited for the event and perhaps does not mind the male pronouns for a past matter. Keep in mind that when some transgender people, including transgender Wikipedia editors, were insisting that Jenner should be using female pronouns, she was using male pronouns. Whereas many transgender people cannot stand to be referred to by gender pronouns that they do not identify with, it may be that Jenner is not as offended by being referred to by the opposite pronouns, unless perhaps there is an ignorant and/or malicious intent behind it. I'm not stating that we should not follow MOS:IDENTITY; I'm simply posting this ESPY Award article for further thought on the records aspect. Flyer22 (talk) 02:38, 4 June 2015 (UTC)

I would not read too much into Jenner not correcting or addressing the ESPN article on pronoun usage, especially in a short Twitter post. Speaking from experience, correcting pronouns constantly can be very stressful, and sometimes we let misgenderings go by rather than correct them, simply out of exhaustion. Funcrunch (talk) 03:52, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
Yeah, I was not expecting her to address the matter, especially via Twitter, and blast groups that will be honoring her; I wanted to add on to the discussion about what is or isn't the appropriate way to refer to her past regarding her records, and what she might think of the matter. As has been discussed above, not all transgender people feel that they were the same gender throughout their lives or at every point in their lives. With this edit, Barte stated, "Some thoughts on the matter from the Washington Post and National Review Both reference the Wikipedia entry here, though neither notes the MOS:IDENTITY guidance." If we look at the Washington Post source, it states, "There’s no doubt that it’s insensitive for former Nickelodeon stars, news organizations and just about anyone to refuse to refer to someone by the name he or she prefers — whether that person is Malcolm X, Cary Grant, Muhammad Ali, Chelsea Manning or Jay Z. But Bell’s insensitive declaration raised an interesting point. Did Bruce Jenner or Caitlyn Jenner win those Olympic gold medals and appear on those TV shows? And if Caitlyn Jenner did, must history be rewritten? Is every source that refers to 'Bruce Jenner, record-breaking athlete' — or 'Bruce Jenner, guest star on ‘Silver Spoons — now in need of a correction? Wikipedia thought so. By Tuesday evening, the ubiquitous crowdsourced encyclopedia was redirecting its 'Bruce Jenner' page to 'Caitlyn Jenner' and using the pronoun 'she.'"
If we look at the National Review source, it states, "GLAAD addresses the challenge this way: DO avoid male pronouns and Caitlyn’s prior name, even when referring to events in her past. For example, 'Prior to her transition, Caitlyn Jenner won the gold medal in the men’s decathlon at the Summer Olympics held in Montreal in 1976.' But GLAAD also defines 'gender identity,' which is the thing at issue here, as 'one’s own internal, deeply held sense of being male or female.' That presents a problem. But the past, being common property, is not GLAAD’s to rewrite — particularly given the Left’s logical inconsistency about what has just taken place. The argument for adjusting the historical record to reflect Jenner’s present sensibilities is (at least in part) that 'Bruce' was really 'Caitlyn' all along; 'Caitlyn' did win the medals, we just didn’t know it then. Yet GLAAD and others liken pronoun changes to name changes: Nobody calls Jay Z 'Shawn Corey Carter,' ergo, they should not call Caitlyn 'Bruce.' But what 'courage' has Jenner demonstrated if his transition is not precisely that he got rid of the person Bruce for the person Caitlyn? He has not simply adopted a new name, a new identifier, but a new 'identity.' Both the identifier and the thing it identifies have changed." Because of all of this, I've changed the title of this section to How sources are referring to the records matter, and what they are stating. Flyer22 (talk) 23:06, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
Re "not all transgender people feel that they were the same gender throughout their lives or at every point in their lives" - this is true, but since you're talking about Caitlyn Jenner in particular here, it seems most prudent to stick with the MOS:IDENTITY guidelines of assuming current stated gender applies throughout the person's life unless they themselves state otherwise. Of course, unless she's stated otherwise, it is highly unlikely that Jenner identified with the name Caitlyn specifically at the time of winning her medals (and certainly not from birth), but that is why Options 3 and 4 above suggest including both names. I really don't see why so many people (not you) are resistant to respecting a person by including both their current and past names in such a manner; it isn't "rewriting history". Funcrunch (talk) 01:49, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
DHeyward, considering what you stated in this discussion, including that "Jenner has already said she doesn't mind masculine pronouns in the 'Vanity Fair' article and indeed still says 'Bruce' out of habit.", maybe you have something you want to state in this section? Flyer22 (talk) 19:06, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
I agree with ESPN. When they talk about the past historical records and there is no way to disassociate former name and their gender is relevant to history and notability, the least confusing and the most natural agreements should be used. The IOC statement is all in past tense and is simply a matter of fact regarding the Olympic record. It's not their place to confirm Jenner's transition with pronouns that reflect her gender identity when they are not in a position to do so and, as a general policy, risk outing someone that has left their deadname and past. If there is another Olympic Athlete that is not as well known but keeps their mailing address updated privately with the IOC and has told them about their transition but is otherwise private and disconnects from that past, it would be a HUGE mistake for the IOC to respond to requests about that Olympic Athlete with anything other than the historic record. Mixing pronouns that don't match the record would only elicit more questions and may even open those athletes' transition to public scrutiny, the exact opposite of their desire. It's a sure bet that there are news organizations looking for other transgender athletes, public or not, to seek comment. I would have no problem if Jenner petitioned the IOC to change its records, but short of that, they are bound by them. I expect the IOC to keep medical history of athletes as privately as possible including disqualifications as well as transgender athletes that petition to compete as their expressed gender (i.e. a transgender woman athlete that competes as a woman is a "woman" with no asterisk, "formerly known as" or parenthetical explanation of the waiver or even mention of the waiver). I also commented that I think it is wrong to highlight the transition in virtually every article about Jenner. It reeks of placing activism over a lifetime of extraordinary accomplishments. Jenner, the person, won Gold Medals for the 1976 Men's Decathlon. Her transition does not overshadow that nor is it necessary to whisper "transgender" on every page with asterisk, parenthesis, name changes and pronouns. Those that do so are not seeking to minimize harm to Jenner, rather they are seeking to exploit her for her courage to transition so publicly. We should let her be the role model and not decide which event in her life defines her. We simply don't know. ESPN is not wrong and they have undoubtedley consulted with both Jenner, the LGBT community and others to decide how approach this. They will be courageous in their choice and respectful of the people involved and to imply anything else does a huge disservice to our readers. --DHeyward (talk) 20:06, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
To me it is misleading to suggest that Jenner saying she doesn't mind being misgendered - especially at this very early state in her transition - should guide Wikipedia policy. Most trans people expect to be misgendered and misnamed repeatedly by friends and acquaintances for a period of time following transition, and even misgender and misname ourselves as we get used to using our new names and pronouns. But in an encyclopedia which is referred to by news organizations as well as individuals, we should set a higher standard, and not give the impression that an individual trans person's comfort level around pronouns should dictate how we handle gender changes. (Of course, if she specifically said that she was fine being referred to by her previous name and pronouns in Wikipedia articles and news coverage, that would be a different matter.) Funcrunch (talk) 20:11, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
The "expect to get misgendered" and "misgender and misname ourselves" aspects you brought up are very solid points, Funcrunch. I think that the "getting used to" aspect is something we should always keep in mind with regard to transgender people, their families, and the public at large; for example, it can take a significant time for a mother to use the new name and pronouns, if she ever does so or tries to do so consistently. I also keep the "getting used to" aspect in mind when considering our Wikipedia editors and the world at large. As we know, Jenner is a person who went by the name "Bruce Jenner," and by male pronouns, for a very long time; so it's natural that people will make mistakes as far as the name and gender go; it's not always a matter of transphobia. Flyer22 (talk) 01:15, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
Not to mention...there are surely still people who don't recognize the name Caitlyn Jenner, at least at first saying or first glance, but do recognize the name Bruce Jenner. Flyer22 (talk) 01:21, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
To limit this whole discussion to what contemporary sources are reporting is WP:Recentism. Most of the primary reporting of Jenner's athletic and celebrity history before 2015 are not being rewritten by the originating source. Newspapers and books don't reprint due to later developments. In Jenner's case, male pronouns are used, Bruce Jenner is the name attributed by those sources. Wikipedia should not be deviating from those sources when reporting historical incidents. To do so is rewriting history, violating WP:SOURCE. That ought to be consistent across all transgender people. We should always link to the main name article where her transition and new name are explained. Painfully, I'm sure some of these prevalent advocates will want to force the parenthetical "now Caitlyn Jenner" into every appearance of the name, we already see that or primarily its inverse occurring, but it will really clutter up the readability of many articles. Jenner's long, public notoriety makes this case more problematic, but it is confusing to any reader in any case where the wrong name and wrong pronouns are used to describe a notable historical event involving a person who transitioned at a later date. Its a consistent violation of WPSOURCE. Trackinfo (talk) 03:36, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Old sources aren't republished, but we do rewrite our articles to keep them current with the most recent knowledge. When scientists discover an new hominid older than all others, we update the article of the previous one - maybe noting that "for X years, it was the oldest hominid known"; when it is revealed that some scientist published papers with fraudulent data, we remove them from the references - we don't accept those as if they were valid before publishing the retraction and only became invalid after that. All that "historical revisionism" argument is frankly an insulting idea; updating articles to reflect that we understand the topic best now, because of the increased knowledge, is what makes us an up-to-date resource, and thus one of the project's best characteristics.

Your best argument is that of readability, but it can't take precedence when is weighted against encyclopedic accuracy (describing all the relevant facts) and BLP (respecting a living person's identity while avoiding harm). And better yet, we don't need to confront them - we could reference both names just in the first appearance in the article, or place a footnote at each entry in a table. So that's not a reason either against options 3 and 4. Diego (talk) 08:56, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

P.S. Regarding the argument about "confusing readers" with the use of pronouns, it's worth noting that the BBC had no problems in using the female pronoun when talking about tenist Renee Richards [9] and is not ashamed of writing a sentence like "She was captain of the men's tennis team at Yale University". For what it's worth, it refers to Jenner as "Bruce Jenner [Caitlyn Jenner], who's a very famous athlete". I think we could use some good advice from the BBC editors and get those as best practices. Diego (talk) 14:52, 27 June 2015 (UTC)
Of course they are, but Renee Richards played tennis as a transgender where Caitlyn did not win the decathlon as a transgender. Today when talking about Jenner we would say she won the decathlon in 1976. I have no quarrel with that. But what does Yale University have listed as their Team Captain back then? The Olympics website uses Bruce Jenner with nothing else as winning the Decathlon. So we have to look at context. When we talk specifically about Caitlyn Jenner and what she has accomplished, we are going to say she won the Olympics but mention that it was as (Bruce Jenner) in some way. When we are simply talking 1976 Olympics we are going to use Bruce Jenner and usually use he in that context. Fyunck(click) (talk) 06:40, 28 June 2015 (UTC)
But that would be an incorrect use of the pronoun given what we know now, that Jenner was a transgender woman, even if she was hiding. A first class publication like the BBC won't make that mistake. Richards also played tennis in the male categories, and she was listed as a captain of the men's team in Yale, but BBC writes "she was captain", not "he was captain". The context has changed because we have more information about that period that was not known then, and dismissing that information as if it doesn't exist would be wrong. Of course it's OK to use the names Bruce Jenner and Richard Raskind for the period where those were the names they were using, but a clarification that we're talking about persons who later changed names is needed. Diego (talk) 08:27, 28 June 2015 (UTC)

To the closer: survey is statistically invalid[edit]

I'd like to point out that this whole survey process is pretty much invalid. Transgender people make up an estimated 2 to 5% of the population. [10]. The 2013 study The Wikipedia Gender Gap Revisited measured gender bias in survey completion and estimated that as of 2008, 84% of English Wikipedia editors were male. In the worldwide Wikipedia Editor Survey 2011 of all the Wikipedias, 91% of respondents were male. There are significant differences in the acceptance of trans people between males and females surveyed, with men being significantly less accepting than women of transgender individuals, with white males being the least accepting among males and with the widest gap between white male and white female opinions. [11] Somewhere between 58-63% of males are sports fans, while only 36-41% of woman are fans. [12]

So, 60% of the 84% male editor population is about 50% of Wikipedia editors, while 40% of the 16% female editor population is 6.4%. Even assuming the unlikely high number of 4.6% for the trans editor population, that puts the expected ratio of female+trans to male editors responding at 1 in 6. Basically, there is no possible way that the outcome can be anything but a "male sports fans" opinion, which would be in no way representative of what our readers want and would necessarily be significantly (and likely severely) skewed toward the less accepting male view of transgenderism.

Unless a better way can be found to do this, these results are completely invalid and should be ignored, leaving MOS:IDENTITY as it is, as the previous consensus was arrived at through discussion about transgender individuals who were not athletes, leading to a more balanced and more accepting result. That is, the past consensus more accurately reflects the general opinion of Wikipedia editors as the inherent biases were not exaggerated by the disproportionate attraction of sports fans to the previous discussions, resulting in the slightly less skewed ratio of ~ 1 to 5 female to male response. I could not find statistics on the acceptance of transgenderism among male sports fans, but I suspect that it is much lower than that of the general male population. Skyerise (talk) 21:20, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

100% ridiculous... AndyTheGrump (talk) 22:32, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
I thought so too. But as long as the closer stays within wiki "policy", looks at the arguments pro and con, looks at any relevant censoring policies, and checks where consensus seems to be, I think we'll be ok here at this encyclopedia. Any ridiculous bloviating will be ignored by most good closing admins. Fyunck(click) (talk) 23:10, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Even if there is systemic bias on Wikipedia and in its users, WP:CONSENSUS is important as well. I assume this will be closed by an admin (or 2) and I'm sure they'll weigh the comments here against site policy. Remember, this is not a WP:NOTAVOTE. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 22:33, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
Yup, and the current MOS:IDENTITY guideline was developed by consensus and has been tested several times previous without any significant change to the guideline. In such a case, it is reasonable to ask two questions: 1) is there a reason why this discussion looks different? and 2) does that reason make it likely that this discussion is more or less representative than the previous ones? Skyerise (talk) 22:54, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
When the MOS:IDENTITY guideline was developed in this regard, POV pushing editors (that minority you statistically itemized above) flocked to the discussion because it was in their interest. We now have a very public conflict where interpretations of this MOS:IDENTITY causes conflicts with WP:SOURCE and offends many other individuals under WP:BLP in the process (I've tried to itemize a few in other discussions). When we are dealing with people of lesser notability, that awkward rewriting of history might be tolerable on a minor scale. Now we have a famous notable figure with a 45 year history representing as one gender but now is transgendering to another. This massive rewriting of history puts wikipedia at odds with the established, known reporting of that 45 year history in a very public way. Advocacy groups wish to use this as an example, but it is not wikipedia's job to alter facts. Trackinfo (talk) 21:08, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
MOS:IDENTITY is not the only guideline that recommends using recent sources over the ones contemporary to the facts, so advocacy is not the only reason to prefer using the most recent name. Self-published name changes and WP:MOS/Medicine-related articles recommend weighting the most recent sources when appropriate, so it's not a concern of rewriting history but of using the most accurate and updated name for the topic. Also MOS:PIPE advises us to "make sure that it is still clear what the link refers to without having to follow the link", so places that link to the Caitlyn Jenner article (or any biography where the subject has changed names) should provide some cue as for why the historic name does not match the one at the linked article. Diego (talk) 19:50, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
Almost all articles containing Jenner's name are getting bombarded (like here and here) by activists replacing Jenner's name to prove a WP:POINT (yet another guideline being violated under cover of MOS:IDENTITY) against what the source says. As these are being reverted by other editors on those grounds, there is the residual Note "Jenner changed her name due to gender transition in 2015." that has not been removed. The message is clear that Jenner has since changed identity, without altering the fact that Bruce Jenner is the name recognized for these achievements. Trackinfo (talk) 22:16, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
Trackinfo, it sounds as if you haven't actually read the specific clause of MOS:IDENTITY, or you'd know that it specifically states: "Wikipedia favors self-designation, even when usage by reliable sources indicates otherwise" Skyerise (talk) 22:21, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
I asked over at WP:AN for a neutral uninvolved admin to close this when the time comes but have yet to get a reply. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 22:35, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
Wondering...Does anyone ever ask for a biased, fully involved admin to close a discussion? Fyunck(click) (talk) 23:15, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
LOL! Are there any admins among the !voters above? We could ask them to close the discussion... :) </tongue in cheek>. -sche (talk) 03:09, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
Thanks. That would be appropriate. Skyerise (talk) 22:36, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

We see this fairly often here. A debate comes to an answer that someone does not like and they try their best to explain why consensus is wrong. I am afraid that you will have to accept the outcome of this RFC even if you think the people involved in it are "sports fans". Chillum 22:56, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

Hmm, Chillum why do you think you are entitled to tell me what I have to accept? I always have the option of just walking away from Wikipedia. Skyerise (talk) 23:00, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
P.S. Your bee and hummingbird photos are great. Skyerise (talk) 23:04, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
Maybe something can be worked out of this proposal is passed? Re-wordingwise maybe? I just don't want it to feel like it is all or nothing, some have argued for this to be a case by case basis. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 23:07, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
Thank you I am very proud of both of those images. You are of course right, if you find the outcome distasteful you do not have to participate. I do think you are being a bit dismissive of other people's opinions. Chillum 23:07, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
Only because many of the opinions are uninformed, put forth by people who haven't actually looked into or considered the hardships and disapproval which are a lifelong problem with trans folk, whether they choose to transition or not. Skyerise (talk) 02:10, 6 June 2015 (UTC)

::::That's not our problem. We are here to build an encyclopedia first and foremost. High quality articles is more important than trans editors being upset over pronoun usage. And let me be blunt. No group of editors has the right to speak for an entire portion of the population. If you don't like it, well no one is forcing you to stay here. Feel free to fork if you wish, but your demands are becoming disruptive. (talk) 06:53, 7 June 2015 (UTC)

Read the BLP policy. "Writing an encyclopedia" is neither our first nor foremost task around living persons; treating them with respect is. Moreover, exactly how on earth do you expect to write an encyclopedia free from hideous systemic bias if you adopt policies and make statements hideously offensive to a not-insignificant portion of the population? Encyclopedias require editors and good encyclopedias require diverse editors. And what I'm hearing here is a lot of "hey I got into the clubhouse and clearly everyone is just like me so it's fine". Ironholds (talk) 04:41, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
I have absolutely no idea how you came to comprehend wikipedia biographies in that way. Like everything else we are here to build an encyclopedia... it's our number one priority. Now, wikipedia gives us Policies and Guidelines to help us achieve that endeavor, and BLP's certainly have more strict rules to follow so we don't get sued. It's why we must source, source, source BLP's. We treat living persons with respect (as we do to dead persons too) but we also tell the truth if it is backed by sources. I'd like to say we never censor, but I know we do in certain cases, so it's best to say we rarely censor. Fyunck(click) (talk) 06:00, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
Probably by reading the policies, being around when they were drafted and working in a related field. It's not so we never get sued; are you kidding? The legal protection we have is actually stronger if the Foundation sets no content policies. It's because you should treat article subjects with a certain modicum of human decency and empathy. Again, the idea of "we are here to build an's our number one priority" - you cannot complete that priority if you are exclusionary to current and future Wikipedians. That I haven't seen you address. Ironholds (talk) 06:39, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
I read them and don't see it where it says we are not first and foremost an encyclopedia. Most were drafted before 2008 when it says you made your first non-anon edit (I was in 2006), and working in a related field I see as a non-factor here at wikipedia. So no policies and leaving us to edit as we please leaves us stronger legally? I don't buy it. I gives us the tools to stop false info from appearing for living people, or attacking them using bias. Our policies were not all set just to treat subjects with kindness. If we did that our articles might be barren indeed. We certainly need to treat subjects fairly, and with npov, but we are not exclusionary to future or current wikipedians. Everyone can edit here. Of course we have to use a certain "modicum of human decency and empathy" but we don't go overboard the other direction either and suppress pertinent facts because people don't like those facts. I don't know where this is coming from, but if it's really the way you feel I don't think we'll ever see eye to eye, but dialog is always good as it helps to see different viewpoints. Fyunck(click) (talk) 07:08, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
You're right, me being a HCI researcher into Wikipedia's collaborative workflows and a former legal monkey is of absolutely no relevance in discussions around legal liability and what makes people leave Wikipedia. Why did I even mention it? Look: the Foundation is protected from lawsuits by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which absolves entities of liability if they merely acted as a publisher of defamatory content without exercising editorial control over it. When the Foundation passes rules that constrain editorial content, it weakens that protection; not fatally, but an amount. That is why they're less liable, as crazy as it sounds, without rules on defamation. And this wasn't my first account. We're absolutely exclusionary to Wikipedians! Anyone can edit, you say. As long as the people who can edit aren't appalled by a community that's okay with deadnaming trans people. Or...being massively incivil. Or any of the other things we tolerate. Your position is analogous to, to be crass, dumping sewer water in a pond and then claiming "hey, anyone can still swim in it, if you don't want to swim in it any more it's your problem, you could if you wanted to". I'm pretty amazed that you've genuinely claimed, though, that "we have to use a certain modicum of human decency and empathy" but also that offending trans people is A-OK. What does empathy and decency look like to you? Being decent about the things you think are problematic? If so, you should probably google that "empathy" word. Ironholds (talk) 17:23, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
You're amazed because I'm an amazing person. I find there's a HUGE difference between using a "certain modicum of human decency and empathy" and going overboard and suppressing facts. Timmy may not like being called a snot, but if all the sources call him a snot that fact will wend its way into an article about him. "Massively incivil?" Holy mackerel you must have some burr up your saddle to make a ridiculous statement like that about wikipedia articles and wikipedia editors. And perhaps you should research the word "modicum" while you have access to a dictionary. Fyunck(click) (talk) 18:22, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
You don't think there are tremendously offensive and rude Wikipedia editors? Huh. You should hang around certain content creators more. And this isn't about suppressing facts; this isn't about someone called Timmy being called a snot; this thread started, in your words, around "pronoun usage". The right of people to be identified in a way that adheres to the very basic, very fundamental elements of who they are as a person. If you want to convince anyone, you should start while explaining why that principle violates the maxim of "Encyclopedia first, and screw everything else!" - and defend that maxim. Not by comparing it to totally inadequate analogies like "someone calling Timmy a snot". The only thing you achieve when you compare gender identity to calling someone a snot is confirming that you don't get the scale of what we're talking about here. Ironholds (talk) 21:04, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
A couple things here. You are were talking about the wikipedia "community," not a few offensive knuckleheads. To be honest, some of the things you are saying here offend me! So you should practice what you preach. And this is about suppressing facts whatever you want to believe. Maybe not your specific viewpoint as I don't follow every single phrasing people write, but several prominent posters here. I'm a pretty courteous person and have no problems addressing people as they wish to their face, but the past is the past as far as I'm concerned and I'll follow the sources rather than rewrite history. My Timmy analogy might have been poor, but it was 100x better than your twisted sewer water analogy. Look, if Bruce wants to change to Caitlyn, that's her choice. If in referring to her we try and make sure we use she/her then that sounds perfectly reasonable to me. A "modicum" of courtesy seems called for here. Plus it can be easily sourced to boot. There are also times that we'll need to use "Caitlyn (formerly Bruce)", "Bruce (now Caitlyn)" and also simply "Bruce Jenner." It will depend on the situation, and the sourcing. The other thing.... I checked here and I never said anything with the term "pronoun usage." Do you have some nasty chip on your shoulder about me because you're confusing me with someone else? If so perhaps you should learn to read more carefully before the fangs come out. Now for me this is getting too personal and astray from the subject at hand which is whether the "survey is statistically invalid." I don't find it so at all and I found the original posting rather offensive to our editors, who for the most part are good people trying to help. Fyunck(click) (talk) 21:42, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
I'm not sure exactly what "legal monkey" means, Ironholds, but even if you were only a paralegal or law school student, not an attorney, you should know that a "right of people to be identified in a [preferred] way" cannot possibly exist in the legal system under which WP operates. Short of defamation and a few other extremely narrow exceptions, anyone can use any words they choose to refer to anyone else. You can make an ethical, social-norms, or other sort of claim, but not a legal one. Your legal training also already informed you that truth is an absolute defense to defamation, so even under the most tortured possible misinterpretation of [US] defamation law, using gender-non-neutral language not preferred by a biography subject could never be defamatory if the facts about the subject could render the gender-specific usage factual in any generally understandable sense. But no one with any legal undestanding would take seriously the idea that gender-non-neutral language could ever be the basis of a defamation claim to begin with. Since you must already know these things, given your legal background, it's unclear to me why you would make such an argument.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  16:10, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

Back to the topic at hand which was addressed to the closer about whether this "survey is statistically invalid." As I did a check it appears to me that a bit of canvassing was happening. I can't be sure because there could have been a mention of why these notifications went out, but I can't find it. So no trouble retracting if I'm wrong. I see that user Skyerise sent out bunches of notices to specific editors from June 4 to June 5 telling these individuals about this topic. Many of those are on her User:Skyerise/ATW sandbox page. Perhaps it's an equal mix of both sides of the issue, but if not it's blatant canvassing. Anyone (like an admin) want to confirm this? Fyunck(click) (talk) 22:20, 10 June 2015 (UTC)

I guess I'm a bit late to the party here, but did someone really just say that writing an encyclopedia is secondary to treating subjects with respect? I don't even know how to respond to something so misguided. -R. fiend (talk) 04:46, 15 June 2015 (UTC)

The problem is advocacy, we aren't here to break social barriers which is what some seem to want done here. If you want to make a difference than take your arguments off Wikipedia and do something to change things. As an encyclopedia though, we follow WP:RS. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 00:58, 19 June 2015 (UTC)

Comments and sample articles[edit]

Admittedly sex-changes, especially so late in life, are tricky. I believe one should follow what the citations/sources say (not what the subject wants). At any give point, Jenner was either Bruce or Caitlyn, and referred to as either male of female accordingly by reliable sources. Cf. the FA article on Augustus, who had several different names over the course of his life and was referred to by historians by those different names; the article reflects this when describing the events of each time period. Other articles, off the top of my head, to possibly consider looking at (transgenders, gender-benders, pseudonyms) are: Wendy Carlos, Brandon Teena, George Eliot, George Sand, Mark Twain. Softlavender (talk) 01:02, 9 June 2015 (UTC)

Jennell Jaquays is another example of someone who gained fame under her former name/gender before transitioning. - Floydian τ ¢ 13:31, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
  • There's economist Deidre McCloskey, transited from Donald at age 53. The article's bibliography lists all works as by "Deidre". This certainly makes sense for reprints that use "Deidre" instead of the original "Donald". For earlier works, it may or may not be the same question as referring to Bruce or Caitlyn in the historical record. Choor monster (talk) 18:38, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

Related (?) topic[edit]

Comment Can we extend this slightly? I understand that the article Hillary Rodham Clinton (the name she prefers to be known by) has been moved to Hillary Clinton. Her picture is still captioned Hillary Rodham Clinton. Can we set up a guideline to stop this sort of thing happening? (talk) 11:14, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

It's more the other way around. WP goes by the most common name used in reliable English-language sources because this is what most people look for. The preferences of the subject lately aren't the criterion. Otherwise Cat Stevens would be at Yusuf Islam. The TG exception that's been carved out turn this on it is ear. So this question is: 1) Undo that exception, 2) extend it to everyone, 3) leave it as some weird exception that gives TD subject a special right as an article subject here that is enjoyed by no one else. Everyone one of this options will piss of a substantial number of people both on and off Wikipedia. The worst is #2, because it will impact the most readers. As for the HRC photo caption: It takes a while for all content to be cleaned up after a move.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  11:30, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

I just had a look at the discussion that caused this to happen and it seems that all the arguments are irrelevant. Surely if a person's name is X entering it in Wikipedia as Y fails WP:RS and WP:V. (talk) 11:34, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

If we're going to defy WP:COMMONNAME policy to always use a transgendered subject's preferred name as the title of their article here, then we have to do that for everyone, or it's laughable bias problem. TG people are not magically "First Class citizens" with more rights than everyone else, us second class citizens.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  07:56, 15 June 2015 (UTC)
To clarify: I mean that the TG exceptionalism to COMMONNAME (and WP:MOS) puts us in the BIAS position of logically having to extend it to everyone or undoing it at least partially. I'm not actually advocating extending it to everyone. On a re-read, I realized the sarcasm wasn't clear. Anyway, I've read the requested move at Talk:Hillary Clinton or Talk:Hillary Rodham Clinton or where ever it is now. The arguments are not irrelevant under Article titles policy. And her name is both Hillary Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton; one's just a longer version. Anyway, the 3-party close on the HRC -> HC case was extremely well prepared and reasoned. It's exemplary. The problem isn't with that move, it's with the underlying decisionmaking tree in policy.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  11:30, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
SMcCandlish I think that it would be fair if we recognise in Wikipedia that, on this issue, we are actively and I personally think legitimately WP:SOAPBOXING on behalf of LGBT issues. Many of these people may face huge prejudice. In effect we are adopting a convention that, in some ways, is akin to Positive action to exert an influence in one direction while society variously exerts an opposing influence. There are a range of WP:NPOV issues that might be mentioned here perhaps including WP:RIGHTGREATWRONGS but, in many cases though not to extremes, I personally think that WP:IAR may reasonably apply. GregKaye 11:01, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
Sorta. It's more that one segment of the LGBT camp descended as a pack of WP:ACTIVISTs and changed something. I doubt it will last, but I say up top, just going back to the earlier status quo is going to make a lot of people angry. There may be some compromise somewhere.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  11:30, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Name vs. Gender[edit]

This point may have been raised above, but if so, it is buried in the discussion and I could not find it. I think we need to separate the issue of "change of name" from the issue of "change of gender". There is no reason why a woman can not be named "Bruce". So... let us (for the sake of discussion) totally accept the argument that Jenner was a woman when she won all those Olympic medals... Her name was "Bruce" at the time. Once we accept that a woman can be named "Bruce", all the angst about what to call Jenner becomes irrelevant... We can treat the name change the same way we would treat any other name change... by using her "old" name in historic contexts, and her "new" name in modern contexts. Blueboar (talk) 13:06, 12 June 2015 (UTC)

Blueboar I think that both a differentiation of issues as well as a differentiation of article topics would be an advantage. Where possible I think that pronouns should be avoided totally. "Why say either she or he when "Jenner" is would be sufficient in most if not all cases. We are dealing with a person here and one who, while identifying as a female, was seemingly comfortable with the use of the male pronoun in the early June interview." This also raises the issue that different people are reported to experience self identification to a non xy chromosome based sex differently according to perhaps any number of parameters including extent and time of life. I also think that a lot depends on the way the individual person may regard themselves in retrospect.
The role played by the person is also significant and much has already been said in regard to Jenner's marriages and the ways in which these should be covered. GregKaye 10:39, 18 June 2015 (UTC)


My sympathy goes to whoever has to close this, not only because the subject is controversial, but because it's confusing that there are multiple options, and the levels of support (or opposition) to any one of them don't at all correspond to the levels of opposition (or support) to the others. The only suggestion I can offer that might cut the Gordian knot is: when looking at the commenters who want to use the new name, and the commenters who want to use the old name, consider whether all of them are actually exclusive to the commenters who suggest using both names or not. Using both names isn't my most favoured option, but it would simultaneously "preserve the historic gender" and provide the clarity and attribution of accomplishments to the people (rather than the strings of letters) who earned them, and so potentially satisfy more people and concerns than either the "only use old name" or "only use new name" options would. -sche (talk) 15:34, 19 June 2015 (UTC)

Clarifying/updating WP:BIRTHNAME with respect to MOS:IDENTITY[edit]

Consensus is that WP:BIRTHNAME should be updated to reflect that birth names of trans and non-binary people should only be included in their articles' lead sentences if the people were notable prior to coming out; birth names may be introduced by either 'born' or 'formerly'. See my closing comment at the bottom which addresses why I, who was involved in the discussion, felt I could close it. -sche (talk) 07:21, 1 July 2015 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Currently on Talk:Caitlyn Jenner there is disagreement about how to handle WP:BIRTHNAME with respect to MOS:IDENTITY.

WP:BIRTHNAME says that then a legal name change has occurred, mentioning the birth name in the lead sentence is advisable. For example, William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton (born William Jefferson Blythe III, August 19, 1946) ... However, using "birth names" for trans people is usually considered offensive (see GLADD, NPR) and WP:MOSIDENTITY makes it clear that BLPs on trans folks are handled differently and with more sensitivity to the living person's identity and wishes. For many trans people's articles, birth names are not mentioned in the lead sentence (e.g., Laverne Cox, Janet Mock). Nevertheless, it seems the be the norm that if the trans person was notable prior to coming out, the birth name is mentioned in the lead sentence (e.g., Chelsea Manning, Chaz Bono, Kellie Maloney). The only past discussions I can find on this issue are here and here but neither directly address this issue.

I seek to clarify WP:BIRTHNAME with respect to MOS:IDENTITY for BLPs of trans and non-binary people who have changed their name (whether on legal documents or not). Below are some proposed wordings to add to WP:BIRTHNAME directly following the sentence starting In some cases, subjects have legally... and two following examples:

Option 1 - Specifying apparent norm

In the case of transgender and non-binary people, birth names should only be included in the lead sentence if the person was notable prior to coming out.
  • (from Laverne Cox, not notable prior to coming out) Laverne Cox (born May 29) ...
  • (from Chelsea Manning, notable prior to coming out) Chelsea Elizabeth Manning (born Bradley Edward Manning, December 17, 1987) ...

Option 2 - No birth name specified in lead sentence

In the case of transgender and non-binary people, birth names should not be included in the lead sentence.

Problem: Not all notable pre-change names are birth names. Interpret as "pre-change name" instead of "birth name"?

Option 3 - Same as Option 1, but change "born" to "formerly"

In the case of transgender and non-binary people, birth names should only be included in the lead sentence if the person was notable prior to coming out. Instead of "born", use "formerly".
  • (from Laverne Cox, not notable prior to coming out) Laverne Cox (born May 29) ...
  • (from Chelsea Manning, notable prior to coming out) Chelsea Elizabeth Manning (formerly Bradley Edward Manning, December 17, 1987) ...

I offer Option 3 as a sort of compromise. Part of the problem can be the language of "born" as some trans and non-binary people have never accepted the name their parents gave them, so the name they were called as a child was never really their name. Using "formerly" acknowledges the transition and name change, but also to me acknowledges that it's the name people used to call them, not necessarily their chosen name.

Note, I do not offer a fourth option of using "born" for all people as that seems far too counter to MOS:IDENTITY and, as explained by GLADD and NPR above, does too much WP:HARM. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:39, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

"Never really their name" is virtually a spiritual position, not something we can verify with reliable sources, unlike the recorded birth name. How the subject feels about that name is their personal business, but vital statistics are a matter of public record. There's no way around that. That said, if Option 1 carries, this will only be a problem in cases where a) the subject was notable before the change, and b) they also have utterly disavowed the name, so it's probably not a long list. Perhaps more to the point any such person is a public figure and has way, way, way bigger PR fish to fry that one website among thousands happening to mention, once, what their old name was. It's a non-issue in such a case.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  11:39, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 1 - Norm specified[edit]

  1. Support as a compromise (between former/birth/current names), and because the birth name is used in articles of similar nature, where the subject is not transgender but their current name is different. Intermediate names, which use "formerly", can be explained further in the article's body sections. Epic Genius (talk) 20:01, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. Support. Our articles should retain the usual format (Wendy Carlos (born Walter Carlos)) for trans people as for non-trans. It should not be a concern of ours that some trans people do not prefer the neutral statement of fact that is the Wikipedia standard. Binksternet (talk) 23:12, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    ...your example is of a transgender person, perhaps choose a different example of our "usual format" such as William Jefferson "Bill" Clinton (born William Jefferson Blythe III; August 19, 1946)? Ogress smash! 08:33, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support. I don't see an issue here, the use of "formerly" I can see causing more confusion. As it is, we have to explain why we use opposite pronouns when describing a transgendered person. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 00:50, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. Support per my comments on Talk:Caitlyn Jenner. ¡Bozzio! 04:37, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Support and add birth names for all. Wikipedia records facts, and facts are facts. If someone was born with one name and changed it for whatever reason that is a fact. If they find a fact "offensive", well, sorry, but tough! This is an encyclopaedia. -- Necrothesp (talk) 13:52, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  6. Support. Talking to or about a trans person in the present day by referring to a birth name they no longer use can be viewed as offensive. However, the historical record is what it is. So whether or not a trans person was notable prior to coming out and/or changing their name, if we intend to be serious about creating complete, accurate biographies, we need to be neutral about history as well. That being said, if using "formerly" is considered a more neutral way to do it, I would be fine with that as well. The only problematic choice here is pretending that a birth name did not exist. Resolute 17:05, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  7. Support option 1 or option 3 (I have no preference). It is extremely important to have the birthname specified in the lead if the subject was well-known primarily by that name at some point. For example, Bradley Manning was already very well-known as Bradley Manning prior to coming out. A reader arriving at Chelsea Manning might legitimately wonder if they had arrived at the correct page, were it not clearly specified early on. The goal of an encyclopedia, first and foremost, is to inform. This is an important part of doing that. Sławomir Biały (talk) 21:29, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  8. Support. I see no point in making an exception to the general rule in this case. -R. fiend (talk) 22:14, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  9. Support Mentioning the birth name in the first sentence. I also support using the birth name and gender when referring to events that happened before the gender change. Bobby Martnen (talk) 02:21, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  10. Support It's consistent. We don't allow subjects to suppress or downplay information about them just because they find it unpleasant (and frankly that kind of double standard is condescending). A change of gender identity should not be treated shamefully as The Name Change We Dare Not Speak Of. Option 3, using a different word, would be inconsistent, but would at least preserve WP's independent neutrality. -Jason A. Quest (talk) 17:10, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  11. Support I actually agree with Necrothesp above... this is an encyclopedia that's filled with facts regardless of whether we like it. Add birth names for anyone that changed it. Fyunck(click) (talk) 09:22, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  12. Support. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 17:25, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  13. Support. -sche (talk) 18:03, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    Incidentally, I notice that Mother Theresa's article, although its subject is cis, happens to follow this practice — it omits her birth name from the lead because she was not notable under it. -sche (talk) 08:23, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  14. Support: if the birth name is notable (like Manning), it should be in the lead. --NaBUru38 (talk) 23:40, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  15. Support - Wikipedia is supposed to be an encyclopedia, which is a depository of facts. The current norm of using prior names should definitely continue in the lead. Onel5969 (talk) 18:42, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  16. Suppport per Binksternet. Acather96 (click here to contact me) 14:51, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  17. Support in part, sometimes but other times #3; not all former names are birth name. The part I don't support is suppressing factual, verified information, if it's encyclopedically relevant.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  15:00, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  18. Support. This seems to reflect current policy on leads, which says that we have to mention any names the subject might be searched under to avoid confusion; and I don't see any reason to change that here. I don't feel that a simple acknowledgement that they once had a different name violates the WP:BLP requirement to respect their self-identification. Without this, someone who searches for Manning under her old name without knowing her full history might think they'd arrived on the wrong page. On the other hand, if the original name is not notable, there's no particular need or requirement to mention it, since people are unlikely to search using it (and anyone who knows it probably knows the subject's new name.) --Aquillion (talk) 18:17, 15 June 2015 (UTC)
  19. Oppose. I don't think WP:BIRTHNAME and MOS:IDENTITY conflict. "the subject's full [birth] name should be given in the lead paragraph, if known," regardless of whether they were "notable prior to coming out." A subjects birth name has various possible uses to readers (further research on the subject prior to their name change etc.).Godsy(TALKCONT) 04:23, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 2 - No birth names[edit]

  1. Weak support? I really don't think the use of birth names is actually useful, given the existence of redirects. All things considered, I think this option is basically probably the best choice. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Cam94509 (talkcontribs) 19:08, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. Oppose - why suppress information that is important to identifying subjects of articles and is all over the internet? Bobby Martnen (talk) 02:22, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support in lede. If we need to give someone's birth name, we can do it in an "early life" section. Something like this: """==Early life== Susan Bloggs was born Joseph Francis Bloggs on 2 December 1971 in Lower Fnord, Ruritania, to Joseph Philip Bloggs and Sarah Smith-Bloggs.""" --Alison (Crazytales) (talkedits) 14:45, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. Oppose - Option 1 is the better, more nuanced choice. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 17:27, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Support non-inclusion of birth name in lead sentence, but require birth name in both Infobox and in Early life section only if the subject was notable pre-transition.I'd not include the birth name anywhere if the subject was not notable prior to their transition. Most transgender people in states which allow it get their birth certificate reissued with their chosen name and gender. At which point the previous certificate is retired and not available on request. Claiming a birth name in such a case could lead to an article which is verifiably wrong. In fact, I don't think such an article should mention the gender-transition at all, even if there are sources to support it, because it is simply not interesting or relevant unless the subject was notable pre-transition. Give these folks some privacy. Skyerise (talk) 19:53, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    I don't believe it is accurate to say "most" do anything. It was only this year that passports were allowed to be updated without proof of sex reassignment surgery and only a small fraction of trans people have this surgery (e.g. Jenner did not have this surgery). It is probably accurate to say that "most transgender people that have had sex reassignment surgery" get a new birth certificate but that's it. --DHeyward (talk) 20:20, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  6. Oppose We don't usually go out of our way to censor here on Wikipedia. Where known, we give the birth name. Fyunck(click) (talk) 20:05, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  7. Oppose - Extremist POV pushing. Carrite (talk) 20:28, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  8. Oppose This is overdoing it. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 22:46, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  9. Support - It is hard for me to see why birthnames seem so important to editors. Whatever made the person notable enough to be included in Wikipedia should have more weight. Implementing a policy to avoid birth names would help combat deadnaming. - MellowMurmur (talk | contributions) 20:47, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  10. Oppose: if the birth name is notable (like Manning), it should be in the lead. --NaBUru38 (talk) 23:41, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  11. Oppose: We do not suppress verifiable information if it's relevant. It doesn't have to be notable to be relevant, and relevance is determined on a case-by-case basis, in this as in all other matters.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  15:01, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  12. Oppose. This is well-intentioned, but the problem is that in situations where the article's subject was highly notable under their old name, there are likely to be people who search for them under it who will be confused when they end up at a different-looking article. This is why the policy states that we have to explain any likely names people will use to arrive at an article in the lead; I don't think it's a problem to mention their old name in this context as long as we make it clear that it is old and is no longer their name, and use their current name everywhere except in the places specifically clarifying that point. --Aquillion (talk) 18:21, 15 June 2015 (UTC)

Option 3 - Use "formerly" instead[edit]

  1. Support per my explanation above as a compromise. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:39, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  2. Support per EvergreenFir. Please note my signature... :) --Guy Macon (formerly Guy Macon) (talk) 22:16, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    You missed a golden opportunity to go with "Girl Macon (formerly Guy Macon)" or vice versa. :-p -sche (talk) 00:00, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    LOL Face-grin.svg Loved that (though maybe that's what Guy intended). Epic Genius (talk) 02:52, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
    Nope. I just wasn't clever enough to think of it. :( --Guy "do you mind if we call you Bruce?" Macon (talk) 05:50, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support Given EvergreenFir's argument, I think this is best solution, actually, for anyone who changes their name. I prefer "formally" rather than "birth name". For notable people, what matters is their commonly known former name, not what name was on their birth certificate. Liz Read! Talk! 21:22, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  4. Support this seems most accurate, all things considered. Lirazelf (talk) 21:27, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  5. Support less horrific for trans people who are "dead name shamed" constantly. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2602:306:CE95:57B0:ED66:B25B:B2A2:792D (talk) 22:10, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
  6. Support No one is "born with" a name or a gender; these are assigned. We are all born babies. Funcrunch (talk) 03:59, 4 June 2015 (UTC)
  7. Support, second choice - I could support this as an alternative to Option 1. Dirtlawyer1 (talk) 17:28, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  8. Support offense is reduced that way. But if any are offended, they have chosen to be offended, and for the vast majority of readers it is not offensive in the slightest. People are not often born with a name any way, that step comes a bit later. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 22:37, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    The vast majority of readers are not transgender. People affected by gender dysphoria do not "choose to be offended". It causes actual pain for us to be misgendered (including being referred to by our previous names). I voted for this option with the understanding that it would apply only to people who became notable under their previous name (whether assigned at birth or adopted later), as a compromise. Funcrunch (talk) 22:49, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
    I believe you. I wouldn't dream of calling you by any other name, but at the same time you don't hold any special privilege on how all trans people should be gendered in an article during various phases of their life. Generally we should go by what the sources say. Fortunately for you almost every RS uses the persons preferred gender for present and future tense. But this "carve out" where we have to use the preferred term for all phases unless the subject makes it known otherwise is ridiculous. This is an encyclopedia, not an activist proving ground (not that I think you were acting in this way, far from it). (talk) 01:37, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    It's not "ridiculous", it was already an established guideline in MOS:IDENTITY to handle gender this way. It's not about activism, it's about respect and not causing unnecessary harm. Funcrunch (talk) 02:23, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    Well even if it causes no difference in offense I am still in favour of this option. The people that have a problem with the former name are going to find it everywhere online and in publications, so all Wikipedia can do is reflect the sources and not overuse the previous name. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 07:44, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  9. Support as a considerate compromise, with the awareness that like some of our other policies the persons most deeply affected will consider it a step short of what they would like, but only (as Funcrunch clarifies) for people who were in fact notable under the other name. --Orange Mike | Talk 23:55, 5 June 2015 (UTC)
  10. Support per Funcrunch ForbiddenRocky (talk) 01:29, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  11. I support option 1, and I don't have a strong preference on whether "born" or "formerly" is used, which means I'm fine with this option, too. -sche (talk) 21:30, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  12. Weak Support I don't think we can definitely say in every case whether "Born" or "Formerly" is the most natural or illustrative for people that are notable prior to transitioning (and I'd argue of they aren't notable prior to transitioning, birth and former name are irrelevant in a BLP). I would use different names with Caitlyn Jenner depending on the style chosen. "Formerly Bruce Jenner" or "Born William Bruce Jenner" as "Born" seems to imply given name at birth and "Formerly" has some choice or common name associated with it. She was known as "Bruce Jenner" regardless of the legal name so that argument has no merit. As a general guideline, "Formerly" is okay though. Personally, I'm less attached to my full legal name than the shortened nickname, i.e. "Hi, I'm X" is an introduciton of who I call myself and is personal. - I am not sure whether the very formal birth name "William Bruce Jenner" is more or less offensive than the common name "Bruce Jenner" but I also don't see how we don't mention the previous common name of a famous person (and let's keep in mind the exceptional case makes poor precedent. A white, male, gold medal athlete is already one of the most privileged classes (is there a more privileged one?) and then going public with a gender transition that makes the cover of Vanity Fair in their sixties doesn't happen everyday. Gold medal athlete to Vanity Fair cover model is two things that rarely happen to one person, let alone the same person and are famous for both now. Jenner does not represent transgender people that generally have higher poverty rates, lower access to proper healthcare and much higher suicide and murder rates. Does anyone know a 60+ year old so comfortable with themselves they'd pose in their underwear for a national magazine for everyone to view/praise and criticize (or would be offered the opportunity? My airbrush has yet to be invented. This is an extraordinary case.) --DHeyward (talk) 19:34, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  13. Support Ed [talk] [majestic titan] 03:39, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  14. Support in part, sometimes if it's the birth name not a mid-life name, use #1; some former names are not birth names. The part I don't support is suppressing factual, verified information, if it's encyclopedically relevant.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  14:59, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  15. Weak support. I don't think that this aspect of the word-choice is really significant enough that we need to establish it via policy one way or the other, but I have no objections to 'formerly' if we are going to do so. --Aquillion (talk) 18:23, 15 June 2015 (UTC)
  16. Support. If you are adopted, your birth name is erased and replaced on your birth certificate in the US. Fact is, that is your name - although you may have formerly been known by another name. Gmcbjames (talk) 20:23, 22 June 2015 (UTC)

General discussion 2[edit]

There is already an ongoing RFC about this issue above.amazingly similar discussion above sparked by the same news cycle item.-- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 19:42, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

I see the one above about using past names on other articles. I know they are similar, but I'm asking for a specific clarification to WP:BIRTHNAME. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 19:48, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I'm not sure we need to suppress information in the public record, so I'd be fine with either option "born" or "formerly", the distinction there seems stylistic. The difference between how we write the narrative of a person's life (using their preferred identity) and noting the existence of facts in the public record which are not matters of dispute. I don't think we even need to suppress the facts for people who were not known under prior names. I don't favor treating this one particular thing differently than other name changes; for example Gerald Ford was never notable under any other name, but we don't suppress his prior names. We also never use any name except Gerald Ford (or variations thereof) in his article except where noting his prior names as plain facts in the public record. I don't see why this should be any different. The exact word used to indicate the prior name isn't important. --Jayron32 19:52, 2 June 2015 (UTC)
    My understanding of the difference is that Ford's name change did not result from a fundamental identity dissonance that persisted through his formative years. Powers T 18:31, 3 June 2015 (UTC)
That's a difference that matters to the subject, and to other parties in some other contexts, but not all parties in all contexts. Anyway, I also concur with Jayron32's take.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  14:55, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  • This is not about trying to suppress anything; this is a unique situation, involving the deepest questions of human identity, and in some ways a special sub-case of WP:UNDUE. The amount of sheer gratuitous nastiness and transphobia I'm seeing in some of the comments is deeply disappointing. --Orange Mike | Talk 00:00, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    Actually I was thinking that almost all the comments were surprisingly reasonable and non-transphobic, and that this was going mostly smoothly. There are differences to be sure, there always are (just like with diacritics on wikpedia), and there are always a few on the extreme ends, but mostly things have been on an even keel and calm. Fyunck(click) (talk) 00:24, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Aye. What's deeply disappointing to me is to see intelligent people assume that any disagreement with a premise they feel strongly about translates into fear/hatred somehow. (It happens on other issues too, not just this one. Hint: Never, ever XFD anything with "women" in its title unless you have a very thick skin, not matter how sensible your rationale is.) It's even worse when you consider that this kind of reaction is also treating any ignorance (which is reparable by discussion and reading and experience), or failure to follow one's argument exactly as one intended (which may have more to do with one's own writing or reasoning), as more fear/hatred. No thanks. See WP:Advocacy, WP:GREATWRONGS, WP:Assume good faith, and WP:Assume clue, for starters. A bit of self-education on both sides of this debate would be useful.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  14:49, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
There seems to be nearly unanimous support for options 1 and 3 (and opposition to option 2); given the nature of them and the comments made on each, I take that to mean articles can use either "born" or "formerly". Do we need an admin to close this, does the discussion need to stay open longer, or can we just modify WP:BIRTHNAME to say:
In the case of transgender and non-binary people, birth names should only be included in the lead sentence if the person was notable prior to coming out. One can use either "born" or "formerly".
  • (from Laverne Cox, not notable prior to coming out) Laverne Cox (born May 29) ...
  • (from Chelsea Manning, notable prior to coming out) Chelsea Elizabeth Manning (formerly Bradley Edward Manning, December 17, 1987) ...
? -sche (talk) 02:38, 19 June 2015 (UTC)
@-sche: Not sure if needs to stay open longer, but given the topic and its history on WP, might be smart to ask an admin to close. Just my opinion on it. I think the wording you propose is perfect given the outcome thus far. I'll wait until closed to add to BIRTHNAME (or if someone gets to it before me, that's cool too). EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 02:43, 19 June 2015 (UTC)
I went to WP:AN/RFC to ask someone to close this, only to find that it says "Many discussions do not need formal closure and do not need to be listed here. Many discussions result in a reasonably clear consensus, so if the consensus is clear, any editor—even one involved in the discussion—may close the discussion. The default length of a formal request for closure is 30 days ...; if consensus becomes clear before that and discussion has slowed, then it may be closed early."
It seems to me that consensus has become unusually clear and discussion has petered out, and discussion has been open for 1 month, so I am closing it.
With one exception, everyone who has expressed an opinion on option 1 supports it; the one person to express opposition says they don't think MOS:IDENTITY and WP:BIRTHNAME conflict in the first place, which is no reason not to clarify them. Everyone who has expressed an opinion on option 3 supports it, with several users pointing out that it is a compromise between not listing even notable birth names (option 2, which has no consensus behind it) and listing even non-notable birth names, an extreme no-one even thought to suggest as a distinct option. Some supporters of option 1 do note that they would also support listing even non-notable trans people's birth names, but they are balanced by supporters of option 2 who oppose listing even notable birth names. The consensus is that WP:BIRTHNAME should be updated to reflect (the existing norm) that birth names of trans and non-binary people should only be included in their articles' lead sentences if the people were notable prior to coming out. Birth names may be introduced by either 'born' (as suggested by option 1) or 'formerly' (as suggested by option 3).
-sche (talk) 07:21, 1 July 2015 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

RfC: elevation of Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle to guideline status[edit]

Closing this as participation has dwindled. There is a clear consensus not to elevate this, and a consensus not to mark this as historical and/or redirect it elsewhere. The general feeling is while BRD should not be compulsory, it is a guide to best practice, so removing it is not going to be constructive. Mdann52 (talk) 13:07, 6 July 2015 (UTC)

The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

I hereby submit a proposal to be reviewed by the community. The proposal is as follows: the essay titled Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle, commonly known as WP:BRD, should be elevated to the level of a Wikipedia guideline. The reasons for this proposal are simple. The essay in question has attained a level of currency across Wikipedia that punches above the weight of an "essay". It is commonly cited by administrators during the course of their duties to halt edit warring. It is the most apt tool that we have to encourage discussion. It is clearly an example of a Wikipedia "best practice", which is how guidelines are defined by the policy on such matters. As such, it has proven that it is worthy of guideline status. RGloucester 00:55, 6 June 2015 (UTC)

Support: BRD elevated to guideline[edit]

  • Support ::"Don't edit war" is ambiguous and vague, and differing opinions about the correct way not to edit war result in unnecessary friction and conflict. Most users will follow a process that is simple and clear, if it has community consensus. I've found that things go smooth as butter when all present agree to follow BRD. The minute someone shows up and says, I don't have to do that, it's only essay, things turn to shit in a hurry. Something about that tells me BRD is a good thing for Wikipedia. Can BRD be abused? Of course it can, anything we did could be abused. Fault the abuser, not the process. Should we can WP:IAR because it's routinely misused out of ignorance or abused in bad faith? No, because it's a net positive. The same applies here. I don't care much about all the ivory tower intellectual objections to BRD, generously sprinkled with WP:CRYSTAL, I'm a practical guy and I'm only interested in what I've found to work in real-world Wikipedia editing. ―Mandruss  01:44, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Have you noted how most people who invoke BRD do it in violation of BRD, often with the same person reverting the article to its initial state three or four times, or reverting with the only reason being "let's discuss the change first"? (which BRD lists as an invalid reason) There's nothing simple in the procedure, and turning it into a guideline would only create a weapon for those who like to WP:OWN articles to wikilawyer. Conversely, the good faith editors who know how to make the best of BRD don't need it to have any legal weight, nor to force others to follow it; BRD only works well in such cases because it's optional. Make it mandatory and it will kill all the goodwill that it requires to be successful. Diego (talk) 18:16, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Ok, scenario: Someone makes a controversial and unsourced change. May I assume that one revert is the right move, or must one of the others immediately start a talk thread? If the revert is good, the editor re-reverts. What's the proper next move? Is it bad to enforce the concept that a disputed edit must stay out until there is consensus for it? Where is the road map for this that has community consensus, that everyone can agree on? Simply stating general principles doesn't work, and has not worked, since that's over the heads of too many of the general editing population. Specific steps are needed, and this is the concept I have attempted to explore at #Discussion break 1 (BRD). As many have said many times, there is no possible solution that could not be used for bad-faith purposes. Bad-faith editors are experts at turning the rules around and using them as weapons, no matter what the rules are, so I really don't get the point of using that as an argument. We might as well throw out laws against rape because someone can falsely claim rape and use the laws to hurt someone they don't like. ―Mandruss  11:38, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
In your scenario the edit would be out because of WP:V, not because of WP:BRD. Counter-scenario: an editor removes a piece of gossip from a biography that is unsourced. Some editor reverts the removal arguing that it's a well-known fact, maybe adding a reference to a tabloid to satisfy WP:BURDEN. Should the sentence then remain in place until a consensus is arrived through discussion at the talk page? What if the fact is not about a living person, but still the reference provided is quite low quality and unreliable? The "defending the default version" rule is not desirable in that case.
Is it bad to enforce the concept that a disputed edit must stay out until there is consensus for it? Yes, because it undermines the core concept at WP:CONSENSUS that all editors should work towards a solution that all parts involved may accept. If you enshrine the idea that one side in a dispute gets to defend their preferred version of the article by default, that side no longer needs to negotiate any proposed improvement - they can just philibuster against any change, which we as a project haved agreed it's a bad idea.
Also BRD says that performing such edit is often acceptable. So enforcing BRD would not prevent that edit, and editors who want to undo the potential improvement would still need to provide a rationale other than "because BRD". Diego (talk) 12:39, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
Some points taken, but I'm having trouble grasping a lot of that after over 14,000 edits. I'm far from alone in that respect; in fact, out there in the real editing world I'm not seeing anyone showing the correct path in various situations, including editors with considerably more experience than I have. All I'm seeing is (1) edit warring, or (2) misinterpretations of BRD with "per BRD" in the edit summaries. Basically, nobody knows what the hell they're doing. That makes arguments such as the above fairly academic, wouldn't you say? The "right way" isn't much use if it can't be effectively communicated to the masses, and how much more evidence do we need that the existing written information is not getting that job done? ―Mandruss  13:29, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Weak support - I'm fairly ambivalent on this one. While I see the points of the first two oppose votes below, BRD is widely accepted and often treated as a guideline when discussing behavioral evidence on ANI and other forums. WP:PG states that guidelines are meant to outline best practices for following those standards in specific contexts. The specific contexts makes me think that WhatamIdoing's concerns are partially addressed. We have other guidelines (e.g., WP:BOLD, WP:POINT, that are similar and I see no major problem to adding this one to the bunch. Just to add, seeing the list of reasons against in past discussion, adding this as a guideline would not negate other guidelines like WP:OWN. I can concerns about status quo though. EvergreenFir (talk) Please {{re}} 02:04, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
I haven't seen WP:OWN enforced in the last seven years; no matter how painful the truth, I'm afraid it's a dead policy. Can you explain what benefit we would get by forcing editors to always follow the next step in the cycle? And how would you assess whether starting a new cycle with a BOLD edit after discussion does comply with the guideline or is disruptive? Diego (talk) 18:26, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Support as proposer – I also endorse the fine words of Mandruss. RGloucester 02:10, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Support For the simple reason that it already is a de facto guideline. I've read the opposes and find them unconvincing. As a guideline it is still not a policy, just a ... wait for it... guideline. It applies in most cases but is not a hard and fast rule to be enforced on people. Beeblebrox (talk) 21:01, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Support I am in agreement with Beeblebrox's reasoning. Gmcbjames (talk) 06:54, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Support. BRD is something that happens sufficiently often for it to be elevated to 'Guideline'. The emphasis of the current essay is 'Discuss' which of course it should be and which, sadly, too many editors don't care to do. Promoting to Guideline would provide BRD with a note of authority while retaining the aspect that as Beeblebrox suggests, is still a GUIDEline. I find the oppose votes rather unconvincing however much traction they appear to have gained. In fact some of them I actually find very hard to follow. --Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 03:50, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
If you think the emphasis of the current essay is 'Discuss', you haven't understood it. The emphasis is on "balance discussion with juicious editing, don't let any one dominate the other". Which proves my point - no two editors will try to enforce it the same way, which is a bad idea for something supposed to carry any authority. I'll ask again: what is the benefit you expect by having this labelled with the word "guideline" instead of "essay"? Diego (talk) 12:39, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
I can't speak to anyone's internal motivations/expectation, but the result of it would be the effective end of WP:Be bold; might as well just go slap {{Historical}} on it.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  12:54, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

Oppose: BRD elevated to guideline[edit]

Note: I alerted the talk pages of WP:Policies and guidelines and WP:Edit warring to this matter, as seen here and here. The talk page of WP:BRD was already alerted. And with as many people participating in the Caitlyn Jenner/Bruce Jenner matter above, there might be no need for me to go around alerting a bunch of WP:WikiProjects like I did in the case of a WP:Lead discussion. By that, I mean that it's likely that editors voting on the Caitlyn Jenner/Bruce Jenner matter will also vote on this case. Flyer22 (talk) 01:49, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
I also see that this matter was discussed in 2014: Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)/Archive 116#WP:BRD as essay. Flyer22 (talk) 01:57, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Another note: When alerting the pages that I did for this latest WP:RfC, I initially messed up the linking. Flyer22 (talk) 21:49, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose A guideline should be something that (a) anyone can successfully follow and (b) is generally applicable. BRD, by contrast, directly says that this is a good practice for only some editors and some situations: "BRD is best used by experienced Wikipedia editors. It may require more diplomacy and skill to use successfully than other methods, and have more potential for failure. Using BRD in volatile situations is discouraged." WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:38, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. WP:TALKDONTREVERT is enough. Consensus can be established without WP:BRD, and forcing editors to use WP:BRD will just create more problems (aspersions, unnecessary arguments and what not). Esquivalience t 02:33, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. In a perfect world it would be a great idea. But BRD is regularly abused now, it'd be a real clusterf*ck if it were to be given more weight. Skyerise (talk) 03:23, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose, per WhatamIdoing and Esquivalience. GregJackP Boomer! 17:50, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose as impractical and a magnet for battleground. BRD may very well be the most misunderstood and controversial instruction set at the Wikipedia space. Half editors believe it to be a call for making bold edits any time debate becomes stalled in a gridlock, the other half swear that it's a reason to never ever touch the article again until talk pages have been crammed with every possible argument and counter-argument, and avoid edits unless everyone involved has endorsed even the smallest change. If we can't even agree to what it means, how can it become official? We'd have to rewrite it word by word before turning any part of it into a guideline, and by then all consensus would have evaporated. Diego (talk) 18:09, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose per WhatamIdoing ForbiddenRocky (talk) 18:25, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose per WhatamIdoing, Flyer22, and Diego Moya. The appropriate means to resolve issues over disputed content depends on the particulars, and trying to shoehorn everything into a singe process simply doesn't work. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:37, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose Sorry RG, the sound of a 1RR on every article doesn't bode well. It sounds like a good idea as BRD is used a-lot but in it's current wording wont make a good guideline. I suggest you look into BRD's wording and seek consensus to adapt it for a case by case basis. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 19:06, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose - I agree with Diego. In addition, I find BRD to be far, far too long. The core idea could easily be expressed in two paragraphs. Instead, it is needlessly overlong. Neutralitytalk 22:25, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose - too vague and hard to follow. It's widely invoked because people perceive it as being so many things. It calls itself optional. Isn't an optional guideline an essay? Bryan Henderson (giraffedata) (talk) 22:34, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose: I will take what Diego Moya said. I encounter editors who have no idea of even the correctly applied concept of BRD. This does not need to be escalated to carry greater weight of repercussions and punishment. Fylbecatulous talk 16:35, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose I consider that we rely excessively on BRD, and that it is in many cases a direct invitation to unnecessary and undesirable conflict. DGG ( talk ) 22:20, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose This is already what it should be, an oft-cited method of editing that works well in certain situations. Attempting to make it imperative will fail horribly. VQuakr (talk) 03:10, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose per the above arguments: it isn't especially clearly written, it doesn't apply in all situations, I also see it as contributing to conflict rather than helping to avoid it, and it would effectively impose 1RR on all articles. That BRD is a useful approach in some circumstances and it's oft-cited are not enough reasons to elevate it to a guideline. Ca2james (talk) 05:11, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
  • oppose as per WhatamIdoing and others above. BRD is oftne a good method to avpoid edit wars, but it is not a one-size fits all solution. It does not, for example, work well in a situation with multiple editors each of whom has a someehat different PoV on the issues. Other cases whre it is not a god fit have been mentioned above or in the discussion below. DES (talk) 05:55, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose the current text says, "The "Bold–refine" process is the ideal collaborative editing cycle. " If anything that should be made into a guideline. GregKaye 15:12, 12 June 2015 (UTC)
    • Better yet, copy-paste that wording into WP:Be bold policy. I may well do just that, after this RfC closes.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  12:58, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose TL;DR: See first item at #Case studies, below. BRD, regardless of the fact that some have used it to good effect, is essentially a WP:POINT and WP:FILIBUSTER tool. Detailed rationale:
    Policy arguments: WP:BOLD is policy (along with WP:IAR), while WP:BRD is a voluntary (if fairly customary) agreement between editors to suspend pursuit of bold action in the interests of WP:CONSENSUS (including the avoidance of WP:EDITWARs). BRD is a behavior guidance essay that recommends one interpretation of and preference regarding how the BOLD and CONSENSUS policies interact. There are other interpretations, such as WP:DR (which is also a policy, and which helps resolve disputes instead of generating them, as BRD tends to do). Likewise, we have quite a large number of essays that provide other interpretations and recommendations (mostly along the "walk away and do another of the zillion things Wikipedia needs done, and spare your blood pressure" vein). These other views are at least as valid as BRD process, and usually less problematic. WhatamIdoing's observation that BRD itself says it's not for everyone is enough to derail this proposal anyway (and no, removing that wording won't get around that problem).

    Community and common-sense arguments: It's readily observable that many of those who cry loudest for BRD when they don't like an edit (or editor), are the least willing to engage in BRD when they think they won't win a protracted consensus discussion, or are right, by God. It's the same underlying psychology behind the old maxim "Everyone is for free speech, as long as it's their own." Diego Moya accurately described the two most frequent problematic results of reliance on BRD, and DGG among others is entirely right about this essay being practically invitational of strife. One of its most frequent uses is to WP:OWN a page or prevent inclusion of something that actually has consensus or wasn't really controversial, by WP:FILIBUSTERing until the opposition gives up. Another is WP:HOUNDING another editor by BRDing all of their major changes within an entire editing sphere (wikiproject scope, or whatever) until they go away. BRD shouldn't be sent to WP:MFD, but its successful application is much less frequent than its fans believe, and it is one of the top reasons WP's quality improvement has slowed to a crawl in the last few years. It needs to be clarified that it can't be abused for stonewalling or wikistalking. If the editor who made a change has a better rationale, then WP:BOLD clearly applies, without having to have an RfC about every editorial point. It's amazing how many editors today incorrectly believe that "you didn't discuss this first" is a valid rationale for reverting anything they want to, regardless of the rationales for the edit. But an increasing number of "differently clued" admins are actually siding with this terribly un-wiki misinterpretation.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  12:47, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

  • Oppose I fully intended to support until I read the arguments against. Chris Troutman (talk) 11:26, 15 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose I don't mind having it as an essay that some people may want to use, I personally think it's not the best method of conflict resolution, and I absolutely oppose making it a guideline or policy. -War wizard90 (talk) 05:22, 16 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose. While BRD is an accepted practice, it is a practice requiring skill and experience, and the BRD essay fails to confer the skill and experience onto its readers. People who do not already know when to be bold, when to revert, when to discuss, and when to stop discussing are not the sort of people who should be encouraged to practice BRD. Instead, support tagging as historical with pointers to EDITCONSENSUS, BOLD, and 3RR. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 13:20, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose - The three-revert rule is already in the edit warring policy and elavating the Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle to a guideline would almost impose a one-revert rule. Though it would only be a guideline (as opposed to the 3rr and 1rr policies mentioned in the previous sentence), guidelines have much more "weight" than essays. The Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle is a good suggestion/idea, but isn't a blanket cycle for all cases. It's fine as an essay.Godsy(TALKCONT) 16:25, 23 June 2015 (UTC
  • Oppose - BRD is good advice but inappropriate as a mandate. Rlendog (talk) 00:26, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose It is good advise but I think making it into a rule sort of misses the point of the essay. Chillum 00:32, 26 June 2015 (UTC)


  • BRD is excellent advice and guidance, but not all that good in terms of being "the rules". Unfortunately, too many editors think that "guideline status" equates to "the rules". Blueboar (talk) 12:05, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
Blueboar, how does guideline status not equate to being a part of Wikipedia's rules? As you likely saw, I commented on guidelines being rules with my "22:07, 6 June 2015 (UTC)" post in the Discussion (BRD) subsection below; I pointed out that per WP:Policies and guidelines, guidelines are also rules. I don't understand the interpretation that only policies are rules because policies have to be followed. Like WhatamIdoing mentioned below, WP:Preserve is also policy...and editors routinely ignore it even while being aware of it. Flyer22 (talk) 06:45, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
OK, let me rephrase... One of the primary purposes of a Guideline is to outline "best practice"... but "best" practice does not mean "only" practice... and unfortunately as soon as we enshrine a "best" practice by giving it Guideline status, too many editors treat it as being the "only" practice allowed.
(as for WP:PRESERVE... remember that PRESERVE is balanced by WP:CANTFIX. I strongly suspect that, most of the time, when an editor appears to be "ignoring" PRESERVE, he/she is actually "following" CANTFIX.) Blueboar (talk) 12:40, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
Maybe it depends on what's in your watchlist, but I see reversions over typos in wikitext formatting, because the source is "only" a peer-reviewed journal article, things that ought to be moved to another article rather than blanked and lost, and other things that are obviously not CANTFIX territory. WhatamIdoing (talk) 23:46, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

Discussion (BRD)[edit]

  • What effects, if any, would this proposal have on the encyclopedia? Winner 42 Talk to me! 00:57, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
    • It would enshrine WP:BRD as a "best practice", encouraging editors to take a more discursive approach to controversial topics. RGloucester 01:01, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
      • That's one possibility, I suppose. BRD doesn't limit itself to controversial topics, however, so the best case scenario is that editors will waste a lot of time taking a more discursive approach to everything.
        IMO, another, and unfortunately more likely, possibility, is that more editors will go around saying that if you're reverted (by anyone, for any reason), that it's your duty to drop everything and go "discuss" with WP:Randy in Boise what the professional literature says about this subject, and why academic sources are preferable for those subjects, and that if you respond to reverting with either a reasonable revert or with another bold effort, then you are a dangerous editor who probably needs to be blocked for edit warring. TLDR: If we're going to set up a WP:0RR rule for bold editors, then let's be honest about what we're doing.
        Also, if this becomes a guideline, we're going to see an increase in reverters demanding that bold editors go start a discussion (because BRD puts the burden of starting a discussion on the bold editor, right? No, no, don't go read it or anything; you might discover that it doesn't actually say that), and insisting that BRD enshrines their right to revert anything and everything at least once, including edits they personally believe improves the page (an endemic problem at policy pages: "I agree, but I'm reverting this tiny change because you didn't say Mother, May I? on the talk page first").
        Basically, I think that BRD is a good idea for editors who are both experienced and have a certain degree of personal maturity, for disputes involving a small number of thoughtful people. Some editors aren't capable of it (they have other options, like learning WP:How to lose or deciding to WP:Let it go, or going through formal dispute resolution), and other times it's not the best choice. In short, it's good for people who can choose to voluntarily apply it to an appropriate situation, and to refuse to apply it in others. It's not good for everyone or every edit. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:20, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Guidelines, by definition in the Wikipedia policy on such classifications, are applied in appropriate situations. They are merely examples of best practice, and are not a dogma to adhere to with fervour. This proposal is not to elevate BRD to "policy" status, but to "guideline status. Please revise your remarks in accordance with the proposal as it was made, not with some imaginary proposal to make BRD a policy. RGloucester 02:48, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Hello, Theory, please meet Data. Face-wink.svg
"Mere guidelines" like WP:FRINGE and WP:MEDRS are enforced with a zeal much greater than some of our core policies (especially WP:IAR). Some essays even get cited as reasons for blocking editors. Everything, even policies, ought to be applied only in appropriate situations, but the fact remains that we have a sizable group of active editors who believe that every single "rule" must be complied with at all times, and that their POV is the only one that matters. You can see a perfectly reasonable, good-faith example of this around electronic cigarettes: is that a "health-related" article, and so WP:MEDMOS's suggested article structure applies, or is that a "manufactured consumer good" article, and so it doesn't? This community is slowly calcifying in its approach. There is a "right way" to do everything, and everyone must conform. This proposal—that a particular style of handling everyday editing disputes be elevated above all other styles—is actually an example of that systemic problem. WhatamIdoing (talk) 14:51, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Indeed. I have to strongly agree with your observation that, if I may restructure it, BRD leads to two different kinds of problem: POV ownership of articles, when it's used to filibuster all "disagreeable" facts, and fossilization of Wikipedia-namespace pages like policies and guidelines, by reflexive reverts that lead to 20 screenfuls of noise generated by people who can't follow basic reasoning. I thank RGloucester for proposing this, since it's clearly going to fail, and this will dump icewater on the zeal of people to abuse this in such ways (and worse ways, like blocking people for not following an optional essay). If this snowballs as bad as I hope, we may actually get back to a productive, fast-paced editing environment like we had ca. 2008. Remember those days, and how much we got done? BRD is the #2 reason we don't any more. The #1 cause is, of course, the shrinking editing pool which despite all kinds of kooky theories is obviously primarily the result of the fact that in the very productive period we already wrote all the "sexy" articles, leaving only increasingly specialized and nerdy topics for people to get a fresh crack at. The frontier has disappeared, and WP is now in an intellectual "suburban sprawl" stage. The only way out of that to a new cycle of renewal is elimination of unnecessary process-mongering. Like BRD.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  13:19, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I feel that with "a more discursive approach to controversial topics" RGloucester misunderstands much of the intent of BRD, which is to encourage a new bold edit in response to unfocused discussion, to provide an exit to talkfests and filibusters. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 03:42, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
If only it actually worked that way. I generally just leads to reversion of the filibuster-breaking bold edit, and new cycle of BRD noise.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  13:20, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
It does work that way, you just don't see it. BRD is an excellent method for working with other editors, and required no invocation of BRD. (you make your edits, and if reverted you discuss before going back to editing) If you count attempted uses by the number of occasions that someone in a discussion or edit summary says "BRD" you'll be counting the people who don't understand. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 06:23, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Some of the opposers seem to be of the opinion that this would make a 1RR rule apply to all articles. That's a red herring/strawman argument that is just plain wrong. 3RR is a policy. If you break it, you are probably going to get blocked. You can't "break" a guideline, all you can do is choose to ignore it. If there are users or admins out there (and there most certainly are) that apply essays and guidelines as if they were rules or policies, that is a problem with those users, not with the guidelines and esays themselves, and not promoting this to a guideline isn't going to fix that problem. (I would actually support BRD being a policy for other policy pages only as nobody should just be changing policy on a whim, and if they are reverted they should obviously seek consensus for their changes, but that's another discussion for another day) Beeblebrox (talk) 21:12, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
Beeblebrox, as noted at WP:Policies and guidelines, guidelines are rules and editors should attempt to follow them. Do I always follow every guideline? No. There is a valid WP:Ignore all rules reason for some cases, but an editor should not be waving the WP:Ignore all rules policy around often as if that gives the editor a reason to ignore a guideline in every case. Guidelines are guidelines because they have generally been found to be best practices; there should be a valid reason for forgoing them; WP:IDON'TLIKEIT reasons are generally not what I call valid. Flyer22 (talk) 22:07, 6 June 2015 (UTC)
The difference between a policy and a guideline is not about blocking. People get blocked every day for "breaking" the guideline about WP:External links. And how many community bans have we seen for WP:IDHT, also a guideline? But when was the last time you saw someone blocked for "breaking" the WP:Editing policy? That policy gets violated every hour of the day, especially the WP:PRESERVE section, but almost no one gets blocked over it. I'm not sure that it's even possible to "break" WP:POLICY or WP:IAR. But people get blocked for "breaking" the mere essay on WP:Tendentious editing.
I believe that the actual goal here is to impose something like 1RR on articles (rather than on people): to stop edit warring by declaring that if you are reverted, your only acceptable course of action is to start a discussion. No more reverting the reverter (even if the reversion is clearly a mistake, clearly anti-policy, etc.) and no more trying a different, bold change: If I revert you, then you must start a discussion (or stop editing the article). WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:57, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
Re: Nobody should just be changing policy on a whim" – Um, policy (other than that handed down externally from WP:OFFICE) got written and developed mostly from people changing it boldly ("on a whim" is a dismissive, subjective value judgement that presupposes you can psychically know what's going on in the editor's mind). We need more of this, not less, all over Wikipedia, which has slowed to a crawl in virtually all areas, public-facing and internal. Most changes to policy don't stick, but they tend to lead to policy development far more than does going to the talk page first and trying to drum up interest in discussing how to maybe approach crafting an attempt to address something that maybe we should talk about exploring to see if it's sufficient concern to warrant addressing with ... blah blah blah. Just put in what you think it should say. If it makes perfect sense, it sticks. If it makes some sense, other people will help massage it into something useful. If it's stupid, it'll get nuked. If you habitually insert stupid stuff into polices and guidelines, you'll be asked to stop. If you don't, then noticeboards. This process worked perfectly fine for over a decade before BRD dumped a truck full of slowly hardening glue over everything. NB: All of this also applies to article content, not just Wikipedia-namespace editing, other than what you add to articles needs to also comply with the core content policies. The underlying process (and what makes it work well or poorly) is the same in both cases.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  13:30, 14 June 2015 (UTC)

Alternative: Do a better job of explaining the concept (and when to use it) at WP:CONSENSUS[edit]


An editor should not need to have a 130 I.Q. and three years of experience to know how to edit without edit warring. I don't know, but my guess is that most or all opposers of this promotion fit that description, and they are unconsciously assuming that most editors are like them. Not so, probably not even a majority, and therein lies the disagreement in this proposal. Guys, it may seem simple and clear-cut to you, with all your experience, but it's not. I've said it before in a different context: Wikipedia has become designed by the experienced, for the experienced, and we wonder why we can't keep new editors — and I got a bit of experienced support for that statement. I'm here as a representative, possibly the only representative present in this discussion, of Average Editors.

(I don't mean to imply that other supporters have an I.Q. under 130 or less than three years of experience. Don't overthink.)

Somehow, the wisdom of the elders needs to be translated into a somewhat simple process, a road map, for the rest of us. We don't need to know why, only how. Vast amounts of time are wasted arguing about who has the responsibility to start the talk thread, for example, and that could be avoided if a guideline process simply clarified that question. If it's true that one size can't fit all, or if it's true that any such guideline would be a net negative — and I'm not convinced of either — then we need to accept the fact that we will never be rid of widespread edit warring, that Wikipedia will forever be an acrimonious and chaotic battleground environment. Those are the two choices as I see it. ―Mandruss  17:38, 7 June 2015 (UTC)

  • Alternative - rather than promote BRD itself to guideline status, I would do a better job of explaining the BRD concept (and when to use it) at WP:CONSENSUS.
If we do promote it, it will need some explanation of when not to use it. There are times when the BRD cycle is unnecessary... and times when it is. For example, BRD is not really necessary in brand new articles... as an article starts and grows, it is likely to change rapidly as editors add new bits of information, and freely rewrite sections with existing bits of information. These articles work best on an "Bold, revert, less bold, repeat" cycle. The discussion part of BRD isn't always necessary. A stricter BRD cycle works better for articles that have been around a while and are more stable. In such cases, it is fine to be bold, but if someone reverts it is usually best to the article and ask why the revert was made. For some articles (and especially our core policy pages) every paragraph, sentence and phrase has been discussed and discussed yet again... and we have reached the point that Bold edits are almost guaranteed to upset long standing consensus. The Revert part of BRD can be assumed if you attempt to make a bold edit... and so "Discuss first" is best. Blueboar (talk) 22:24, 7 June 2015 (UTC)
Let's ignore everything outside of mainspace for this discussion; relative to the entire editing population, I doubt many editors know they are allowed to update policy and guideline, feel competent to do so, and want to do so. Within mainspace, based on your comments, would it be at all feasible to produce, say, three different "editing models", with a road map for each? If that could be done, then the main area of process-related conflict would be which model to use at a given time on a given article, and any model change switch could be decided by local consensus. One of the models could be pre-designated for use with the more stable articles, which would avoid a problem when there aren't enough people around to form a consensus. It could be designed to work for a two-editor situation (a one-editor situation doesn't need a process because an edit war requires at least two). Perhaps three sizes could fit all? ―Mandruss  23:15, 7 June 2015 (UTC)


File:Oversimplified flow chart for editing.png|thumb|This shows a possible decision-making path for editors on Wikipedia.]]

Thank you for keeping the less-experienced editors in mind. It's easy to lose sight of that perspective.
There are probably a dozen alternatives (some of which are listed at WP:BRD#Alternatives), but if you exclude anything that smacks of edit warring, then the basic categories might be these:
  1. Bold, refine, rejoice
  2. Bold, revert, discuss
    • with the editor that reverted your bold change (BRD is focused on talking to one or two objectors, not everyone)
    • with everyone/via formal dispute resolution processes
  3. Bold, revert, try again (trying something else, maybe a less ambitious edit, not re-reverting)
  4. Bold, revert, give up (or move on to another article: an ideal approach for cleaning up {{linkfarm}} problems)
  5. Moderate edits (e.g., deliberately change one paragraph or other small piece a week until you're done)
    • Usual options of discussing, re-attempting, and giving up if you're reverted, but reversions are less likely
  6. Discuss first (aka "timid" editing; wide range of options in this category)
Well, that looks like six. Probably other editors would produce different lists. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:32, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
At over 14,000 edits, I don't understand a third of the above, or how I would use it in practice. Am I atypically stupid, or atypically lazy? Even if I understood it, that would be worthless unless most of the others present understood it, too; a majority agreement as to process is needed. Seriously, how are editors expected to stick it out long enough to understand all that? With road maps, we don't need to understand it; we just follow the instructions. We can drive our cars without being experts in auto mechanics, but only because automakers figured out how to isolate us from all that and "dumb down" cars.
Thank you for keeping the less-experienced editors in mind. It's easy to lose sight of that perspective. - sounds a bit like we're talking about a small minority that's easy to forget. Are we? My perception is that perhaps 10% of active editors are at a level capable of understanding the above, or anything close to it. Again, unless the majority present are in that 10%, their knowledge can't have any beneficial effect. ―Mandruss  05:23, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
Well, I've added a flowchart. To keep it on one page, I've simplified some of the options, but it's the general idea. Maybe that will make more sense than the rather jargon-y list.
IMO you don't need to know any of this to edit. You just need to click the 'Edit' button and have a go. You can figure out each step individually, as you go along, without any sort of roadmap. Just trying something out is how most of us get to the point of being able to identify all the different options. WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:00, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
Do we have statistics on number of active editors by edit count? Like a graph? ―Mandruss  11:29, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
Maybe, although I don't know where; however, it looks enough like this as to make no particular difference. Or, to put it another way, in the history of Wikipedia, there have been 25,369,760 accounts created, and your contributions put you in the top 0.02% for number of edits ever. If you ranked there in terms of American income, you would not only have been "a one percenter", but your income would have have ranked in the top 10% of American millionaires (using the definition of a millionaire as someone who earned at least a million US dollars last year, not those with lower incomes who have saved a total of $1M or more). WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:00, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
My sole objective is to achieve a dramatic reduction in edit warring. It is abundantly clear that the status quo is not working, and yet, most experienced editors say that no change is warranted. I can't get my head around that; if it's not working, a change is warranted, full stop. That would seem to be the first step on a path toward a solution. We are not going to repeal human nature any time soon, so it's not realistic to simply say that the required change is within us. ―Mandruss  09:28, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
I believe that everyone would like to see less edit warring. Speaking for myself, requiring BRD is neither a practical nor an effective way to build a good encyclopedia, and its effect on the more severe forms of edit will probably be zero. WhatamIdoing (talk) 17:57, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
What I'm talking about is that the elders don't say, "Promoting BRD is a bad idea, let's find a better solution to edit warring." Instead, most of them say, "Existing policy and guideline is all we need to prevent edit warring. People just need to use it correctly." My reply is, "How's that approach working so far, after years of use?" At that point they go silent. There seems to be a widespread reluctance to accept that some change is in order, and to be willing to take a look at alternatives like this one with an open mind. ―Mandruss  10:30, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
I agree that edit warring is a problem. I agree that we should try something different (or even multiple things). I disagree that we should try this different thing.
Since you seem to have a good grasp of the problem, I invite you to expand Wikipedia:Irregular verbs on Wikipedia to include a new section on edit warring. The last line will be "They edit war", of course, but what do you think that 'the elders' believe themselves to be doing when they are reverting? WhatamIdoing (talk) 19:22, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I'm strongly in favor of doing a better job of explaining the [original] concept behind BRD, at WP:CONSENSUS (specifically WP:EDITCONSENSUS), and beginning this with the outlining-alternative-approaches model given above. That would probably be most productively done at WT:Consensus, of course, but this is a nice start. With that page being a policy, it's unlikely that any of the bad aspects of BRD will survive such a vetting process, and we might get something very good out of it.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  13:40, 14 June 2015 (UTC) Rescinded. Just mark it {{Historical}}. WP:CONSENSUS is fine as it is. (See first item at #Case studies, below, for why I changed my mind.)  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  06:14, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Make Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle a redirect to Wikipedia:Consensus#Reaching consensus through editing[edit]

  • Support making Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle a redirect to Wikipedia:Consensus#Reaching consensus through editing. The current WP:BRD essay rather muddies the waters than "supplement the Wikipedia:Consensus" policy. It causes more trouble than it solves, a sort of overcomplicated alternative ruleset to what is actually policy. Typically WP:BRD is invoked when a revert/discussion cycle has gone apeshit, and all parties contend that they were faithful to the essay, so "doing nothing wrong". Whether or not they adhered to the policy in the matter WP:EDITCONSENSUS and subsequent sections at WP:CONSENSUS seems not to bother them, as long as they can make themselves appear immaculate in the light of WP:BRD. And then indeed that essay is so complicated that anyone can defend almost any edit with it, using the sort of counterproductive "I did – no you didn't" back and forth as a replacement for consensus-seeking. --Francis Schonken (talk) 08:11, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Very hesitant about this. This proposal means making BRD "policy". Kneejerk reaction is a big NO, it means throwing away nearly all the documentation on BRD, and risking future editors believing that they "MUST" BRD. In fact, BRD is an advanced high speed method for fixing/building content, and the BRD rules, as they, are mark the boundary between bare minimum consultation and edit warring. However, there might be something serious to this idea. If the wording about BRD was correct, and was placed in the policy, it may give BRD a better grounding, and the essay page could remain to discuss DRB more lengthily. There is a problem that BRD is pseudo-policy, and that the essay is not written as policy. I'm pretty sure I will object to converting the essay to a redirect, but this is a very new and interesting idea. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 11:50, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
    • Re. "this is a very new ... idea": [13] – even then I don't claim to have invented the idea, I'm sure I read it many years ago already (around the time when File:Consensus Flowchart.svg was introduced at WP:CONSENSUS?) when it was decided to give WP:BRD the benefit of the doubt.
    Re. "BRD is an advanced high speed method for fixing/building content" – I challenge that summary: true, it is "advanced" in the sense that WP:BRD's File:BRD1.svg has more steps and complications than WP:EDITCONSENSUS's File:Consensus Flowchart.svg, but that can hardly be seen as increasing speed.
    There's no kneejerk in this: WP:BRD has had its chances for many, many years. It hasn't worked out. Now we can feel sorry for ourselves having let it absorb so much energy over the years. If I had foreseen this around the time when WP:EDITCONSENSUS was adjusted to the practical "high speed method for fixing/building content" it is now, sure, I had been more insistent to make WP:BRD a redirect then. I don't intend to lose further time with self-pity though. The practical guidance on the matter is policy, no need for the somewhat more bloated version that doesn't seem to really know where it is going. --Francis Schonken (talk) 12:47, 8 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I'd rather re-write BRD to return it to something close to its original (which was advice for experienced, clueful editors who were trying to jolt unproductive discussions out of their ruts by giving an example of what could be done and working through the objections one at a time). WhatamIdoing (talk) 03:56, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Naw. Effective deletion of the essay and redirection of the many, many links to WP:BRD to a different target would be unhelpful. VQuakr (talk) 04:04, 9 June 2015 (UTC)
    • I could live with tagging it as {{historical}}, pointing to WP:EDITCONSENSUS as the current applicable guidance, but then I don't know whether WP:BRD ever had guideline or guideline proposal status (demotion of an ineffective essay is usually deletion or redirection).
    Another solution is possible, and I could live with it too: it's the solution hammered out for WP:DEFINING after some intense discussions, with the same problem: it had been used historically as a shortcut in so many previous discussions, that re-redirecting the shortcut seemed impossible. The redirect goes now to a page that is framed as a how-to page that transcludes relevant guidance from applicable guidelines, including the one it originally redirected to. Instead of rewriting Wikipedia:BOLD, revert, discuss cycle (which doesn't seem very practical given the wide array of opinions on it), why not replace the "essay" template by a {{Howto}} template and, after a short introduction, quote (by transclusion, so that the content is automatically updated when the guidance is updated) relevant guidance from WP:BOLD (for instance the intro and the "... but please be careful!" sections), and WP:CONSENSUS (I suppose the WP:EDITCONSENSUS and "Reaching consensus through discussion" sections)? --Francis Schonken (talk) 21:20, 10 June 2015 (UTC)
  • That looks like a highly sensible and useful solution, so it's not going to happen. Ever. Diego (talk) 15:50, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

*OpposeSupport: WP:BRD, as it stands, is way, way, way too bold. Reverting should be done on a case-by-case basis. Reversion can either foster discussion, or lead to constant arguing without any compromise on the horizon. Esquivalience (alt) (talk) 00:10, 4 July 2015 (UTC)

    • As far as application of guidance goes: WP:EDITCONSENSUS doesn't seem to have that trail record of problematic application, although it is applicable in the same circumstances as BRD. Maybe just because the former is better written, clearer, less prone to misinterpretation, and just more effective with less of the problems associated with BRD. --Francis Schonken (talk) 06:50, 11 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Reluctant oppose: I agree entirely with all of Francis Schonken's rationales, but I wouldn't go that far. We tolerate a lot of really iffy essays, and BRD does sometimes get used to good effect. I think WhatamIdoing sums it up best: 're-write BRD to return it to something close to its original'.
    But strongly support tagging BRD with {{Historical}} as soon as WP:EDITCONSENSUS has been upgraded as proposed in the subthread immediately above this one.
    Then, rewrite BRD to observe and describe a mindset/approach/preference to dispute resolution and how/why it often works, not recommend a methodology/process/practice which often fails dismally. The entire problem with BRD is that it's been written as procedure you should follow, which some editors (including admins) increasingly see as something you can be punished for disobeying, rather than a more philosophical essay on how agreeing to stop and discuss can be used to resolve differences in place of revertwarring back and forth. The former is something to impose, the latter is something to mutually participate in. After a rewrite like that, restore the essay tag.>
     — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  13:54, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Strongly support tagging BRD with {{Historical}}, but no redirect, per SmokeyJoe's observation. See first item at #Case studies, below, for why. BRD, regardless of the fact that some have used it to good effect, is essentially a WP:POINT and WP:FILIBUSTER tool. I've given it all the benefit of the "good faith" doubt that I can. I'm done.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  06:12, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose WP:BRD is still frequently cited, so it is no historical. The essay could be rewritten, but not just redirected. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 22:29, 14 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose Regardless of whether it should be promoted to a guideline, the BRD essay is still quite useful and should not be paved over. Darkfrog24 (talk) 18:59, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose converting to a redirect. WP:BRD is a Wikipedia historical fact. The incoming links, I bet there are a lot, need to arrive at what something reflecting what was intended at the time of writing. Support tagging historical with pointers to the WP:EDITCONSENSUS section, WP:BOLD and WP:3RR. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 13:14, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

Tag WP:BRD as {{Historical}}[edit]

  • Support per reasons given above and below. Under the {{Historical}} tag add a friendly reminder that the former essay has been replaced for all extents and purposes by the WP:CONSENSUS policy and additional guidance found in WP:BOLD. --Francis Schonken (talk) 07:56, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Support that. It would put an end to people using it as policy, and work as a reminder of what the real policy is. I would also add a link to "...additional guidance found in WP:3RR" (in addition to the link to WP:BOLD), to appease rollbackers. Diego (talk) 09:30, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Oppose It's a good essay, and still frequently cited. In many cases, it does represent best practices, even if it does not carry they weight of policy or guidelines. We should not mark historical those pages which are still widely supported and actively used. --Jayron32 07:11, 26 June 2015 (UTC)

Case studies - real discussions illustrating why BRD should be elevated or not[edit]

  • Here's one going on right now (well, I just terminated my participation in it). This may well be best example in the history of Wikipedia of how BRD fails and can be abused: Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style#Improving examples in "Quotations": "Point of View" section. Short version (it's a text-wall, as BRD tends to lead to; it just seems nitpicky until round 2, when the "fun" starts): I opened a discussion in good faith, after a revert of a bold edit, showing my copyedit and insertion of some new content, plus a clear rationale. This was then nitpicked in virtually every possible way, in a circular WP:FILIBUSTER, WP:IDHT and WP:TROLL pattern, through three nearly identical cycles, while agreement to accede to the edit was withheld until conditions that are literally impossible are met, yet the D in BRD must continue! It borders on the unimaginable. I'm actually changing my !vote above, in favor of just redirecting BRD to WP:CONSENSUS on the basis of this abuse of (voluntary) process, and am unlikely to ever agree to BRD again.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  06:12, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Without having read you case throughout, I immediately note that it is not BRD (BRD is a cycle, after some D return to B, it is not BRDDDD...), and then note that the MOS pages are particularly troublesome places, and then note that BRD is intended for mainspace article editing where the common objective is more objective than a MOS page. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 06:30, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
  • Good illustration of what's wrong with WP:BRD. Above I argued how WP:BRD is onworkable because of its many redundant complexities. When you're unsuccessful in proving your immaculateness with WP:BRD as written, sure, why not, invent a new unwritten rule, adding another redundant layer of complexity "...BRD is intended for mainspace article editing..." – way to go! Is that what you propose as a rewrite to salvage an essay that is steering for its own destruction? Is that making it more straightforward as argued above?
FYI, WP:EDITCONSENSUS doesn't have these complexities, works in all namespaces, and points to alternatives when getting stuck in a discussion. It's so easy to say "..., it is not BRDDDD..." – sounds good, but what does it actually say? Nothing, not a single idea offered on how to get out of an unproductive discussion (or was the idea: when being bored by "...DDDD", throw a few bold edits in, then you're immaculate for WP:BRD...?) In contrast, WP:CONSENSUS has direct access to all sorts of tools to bend an unproductive discussion in something with a clear outcome, either an edit or a status quo... without losing time with empty procedural discussion. --Francis Schonken (talk) 07:51, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
Francis, um yes. I take your point. Can I add something that may further make your point: People who use BRD well don't need the essay for guidance on how to do it, and people who need to read the essay, even if it were better written, probably should not be encouraged to claim they are using it. I also take someones point that the essay serves as an invitation to conflict, more than it helps. Maybe it would be a good idea to tag it as {{historical}}, with a pointer to WP:EDITCONSENSUS. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 08:53, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
Was thinking along these lines as a replacement for the current {{essay}} template on top of the page: --Francis Schonken (talk) 09:18, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
Updated per Diego's suggestion above. --Francis Schonken (talk) 11:05, 18 June 2015 (UTC)
Support this tag, but remove the 2nd and 3rd shortcuts from the linkbox. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 13:09, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
  • I often correct errors or implement the result of RfCs on hundreds or even thousands of pages at once. Every time I do, I get a handful of reverts from IP addresses that have never edited Wikipedia before, with no edit summary. Rather than starting a talk page discussion that has a near-zero change of getting a response, I simply re-revert [2RR], and if it doesn't "stick" (which happens pretty much never), then I start a discussion. I don't think that changing 3RR to 1RR (which is what elevating BRD will do) is a good idea. --Guy Macon (talk) 07:30, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

Excuse me? "Abuse"? You proposed new text, got reverted, and then got all huffy when I asked you about sources! How is that abuse of BRD? A lack of desire to enter unsupported personal opinions into the MoS does not constitute abuse of process. As the sole other participant in the discussion that SmC is citing, BRD only came up when I defended SmC's right to add the disputed text in the first place. It was an expression of approval of SmC's choice to take the matter to the talk page. [14] I was trying to be nice and keep SmC's feelings from being hurt. It seems I failed. So this is one way in which someone might use BRD, but in this case it didn't work. Darkfrog24 (talk) 19:08, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

  • This is not directed at anyone specific... just an observation. I have noticed a lot of hypocrisy when it comes to BRD... a lot of editors dislike the BRD cycle when they are the one editing BOLDly (and someone else reverts and wants discussion)... but support it when (someone else is editing BOLDly and) they are the one doing the revert and calling for discussion. Blueboar (talk) 15:41, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Closing this as participation has dwindled. There is a clear consensus not to elevate this, and a consensus not to mark this as historical and/or redirect it elsewhere. The general feeling is while BRD should not be compulsory, it is a guide to best practice, so removing it is not going to be constructive. Mdann52 (talk) 13:07, 6 July 2015 (UTC)

"and a consensus not to mark this as historical and/or redirect it elsewhere" I can't see where he read that consensus. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:05, 7 July 2015 (UTC)

The best solution for the biggest online encyclopedia, Wikipedia.[edit]

Currently, many people consider Wikipedia as a fake encyclopedia. Some of them say "Wikipedia can't be trusted, it contains all wrong information and everyone can change it". What I would like to propose is seen that on Wikipedia IPs will be always welcomed, why don't we protect all articles here permanently, as the Indonesian and others do. Or else the EDIT TAB at the top of the page must be hided. This will defend Wikipedia from vandalism and people will be trusting and caring more to Wikipedia. Otherwise all IP edits can be reviewed. Hope that everyone agrees with this perfect method.--Graspleonanymore (talk) 19:58, 21 June 2015 (UTC)

see Wikipedia:Perennial_proposals#Prohibit_anonymous_users_from_editing. Your suggestion is generally shot down because it won't actually address the issues as can be seen [15] where a registered user account inserts unsourced promotional content into an article. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 20:29, 21 June 2015 (UTC)
I think they are proposing that all pages use pending revisions for IP edits. Jason Quinn (talk) 12:40, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
Considering Wikipedia's grown into an amazing resource using an open model, it seems to me that you are arguing against proven successful methods in some strange bid to prevent failure. You registered your account yesterday. Why do you think you have the experience to know what the "perfect method" for Wikipedia is? If it is so easy and obvious, somebody among our many thousands of multi-year veterans would have figured out a perfect method and proposed it already. It is not so easy or obvious. As for the people who dismiss Wikipedia as having no value being it's open, consider them dinosaurs and just ignore them. Why should we change in response to people who have an inaccurate view of the world? Jason Quinn (talk) 12:40, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
Ip users contribute about 90% of edits and lots keep minor spelling and grammar in order. Could we consider a WP:SNOW for this? TheMagikCow (talk) 17:08, 22 June 2015 (UTC)
It's far fewer than 90%! Johnbod (talk) 13:22, 23 June 2015 (UTC)
It's closer to 40%. Dragons flight (talk) 02:23, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
Let's follow this to its logical conclusion and do away with pending changes for editing existing articles. Give IP editors the ability to create articles and put those articles into pending changes. At one stroke we get rid of AfC with its huge backlog and free pending changes reviewers to do something more useful - like reviewing new articles by IP editors. We don't need pending changes on existing articles because they are on watchlists and any vandalism is soon reverted, either by ClueBot or an editor. This proposal will be found at the top of this page and it needs discussion - it's been running for 31 days but so far only four people have !voted. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)
Yeah, I'd like to see some real stats on this. This probably does need to be re-examined periodically. At some point a line will probably be crossed where anons generate more mischief than positive results.  — SMcCandlish ¢ ≽ʌⱷ҅ʌ≼  02:03, 28 June 2015 (UTC)
I've got to support the anon here. As much of a headache as persistent vandalism is, the positives outweigh the negatives. There have been so many occasions when an IP, with poor formatting and bad spelling will post that tidbit of truth that can take fact-finding in a whole new direction. From these things that might even look like vandalism, there is truth that can be googled and sourced. Whole articles have been constructed from the path an IP has sent me on, and any editor who is conscientious about checking before pushing the vandalism button should have the same kind of story. As big as some people's egos are, we can learn things from other people. Trackinfo (talk) 04:26, 28 June 2015 (UTC)
I'm also going to support the "anonymous users" here. Vandalism is an annoyance; however even without IPs, vandals would just to take a couple seconds and register (no email verification!) There are many IPs that wish not to register for personal reasons, and many are constructive (contrary to popular belief; IPs are often presumed vandals by quite a lot). Some also see no reason to register; why would they do so if they just want to correct a grammatical error or do some quick editing? Esquivalience (alt) (talk) 02:15, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
It's not just vandalism, which implies deliberate destructiveness, it's also the disruptive editing that seems well-intentioned but is inept, and where, because of dynamic IP assignments, the proffered user warnings are apt to go unnoticed (or so it sometimes seems). I think Wikipedia could do a better job of sorting out the good from the disruptive IP edits. Dhtwiki (talk) 00:13, 5 July 2015 (UTC)
Ineptitude can go both ways. I'd like to think I'm an experienced editor, but I have had my own ineptitude corrected by anon IPs . . . today. It is amazing how fast information flows here. People are watching. We even have an effective, sometimes obnoxiously so, new article patrol. I have great faith in watched articles getting corrected. Your quality may vary depending on the watcher(s). I've seen some garbage in low traffic, poorly watched articles. Our problems come from unwatched articles. Right now that list is secret, which does to motivate the kind of diligent wikipedians we depend upon to watch, to take those articles under their wing. So who knows what is in unmonitored articles? Trackinfo (talk) 00:37, 5 July 2015 (UTC)


Countries with authoritarian govermnets usually have a state-sponsored press, which actually works as propaganda outlets. Their editorial line may be basically described as "our country is a paradise, everything is completely fine, the 100% of the people love our infallible and glorious leader, and whoever says another thing is a traitor to the nation, working for the evil imperialism". In successful authoritarian governments, such as Castro's Cuba or Chávez's Venezuela, the standard impartial press has been vanished and only those types of "press" are available for the population.

Question 1: Are those newspapers reliable sources to report general facts? Is it appropiate to use such sources to write the article about the "glorious leader", or the political crisis or scandals he may have been involved with?

Question 2: The "glorious leader" says that 2 + 2 = 5, and the propaganda outlets repeat that. 2 + 2 = 5, and those who say it's 4 are enemies of the nation seeking to overthrow the beloved leader! Would it still be a fringe theory? Should we report that for everyone 2 + 2 = 4 and for that guy it's 5, or would that give undue weight? Cambalachero (talk) 14:59, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

This has been discussed pretty in depth before in this RfC. You can also read a clarification on the closing admin's talk page here, for more information. Bosstopher (talk) 15:14, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
(edit conflict) It's all explained in Questionable and self-published sources, see WP:SELFSOURCE and WP:ABOUTSELF in particular. As an encyclopedia we are interested in documenting how such regimes present themselves, and as a neutral, non-biased resource we are required to include all points of view that are relevant to the topic at hand (and they should attributed as such to the party making them).
This doesn't mean that we should include the official position of the regime at every article where the regime has one; only for subjects where the opinion of that government is on-topic we should mention it. At other places, their statemenst would be fringe as you say. So, the final answer is "depends on the context", as it happens with everything regarding verifiability and reliability of the sources. Diego (talk) 15:18, 24 June 2015 (UTC)
Exactly... a lot depends on how Wikipedia presents the material. Is it being presented as an unattributed "fact" or as an attributed "opinion"? A propaganda outlet might not be reliable for the former, and yet might be extremely reliable for the latter. Blueboar (talk) 13:56, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
I started an essay on this, Wikipedia:Propaganda. Cambalachero (talk) 14:05, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
That looks like a good candidate for moving into userspace with a redirect, as I did with WP:1AM. --Guy Macon (talk) 14:18, 4 July 2015 (UTC)

The what? of all knowledge??[edit]

The words "the sum of all knowledge", a goal for Wikipedia set by James Wales, are ambiguous to non-first language English users. My Wikipedia Dutch chapter WMNL thinks it means "all knowledge". Dictionaries (Websters, Oxford Learner's, etc.) agree that Sum has various meanings:

  1. the numerical or otherwise total
  2. the gist, summary or substance
  3. ...etcetera...

I am reading a biography by Ivor Keyes: Johannes Brahms which has a section of four pages "The sum of Brahms". So Wikipedia's "sum of all knowledge" could mean

  1. simply: all knowledge. That would be a lot, also non-encyclopedic material (how-to, cooking recipes, we can go on, enormous detail in the sciences ...) or
  2. the summary of all knowledge. This seems more practical, and in line with the ambitions of classic paper encyclopedias. But English speakers should decide.
  • Can you help us out?

Thanks, kind regards, Hansmuller (talk) 21:18, 25 June 2015 (UTC)

More context would be helpful, but in general it is useful to strike a balance between being an indiscriminate collection of information and setting the bar for notability so high that topics of the public and historical interest are excluded. How these policies are implemented is often highly contextual and can vary from Wikipedia to Wikipedia. Also, while English Wikipedia is the largest and most active Wikipedia, it is not the governing Wikipedia, each individual language site gets to make their own policies, even if they are often based on the English Wikipedia. Hope this helps. Winner 42 Talk to me! 21:28, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
It is ambiguous to native English users too. It isn't English Wikipedia policy however, and consensus on the English-language Wikipedia at least is that we don't include 'all knowledge', but instead limit ourselves to verifiable encyclopaedic content. Not that we necessarily always agree over what 'encyclopaedic' means. As for what the Dutch Wikipedia decides is appropriate, that is a matter for them, not us, to decide. Wikipedia:What Wikipedia is not is the relevant policy here - I suggest you ask your Dutch colleagues if they have a similar policy. AndyTheGrump (talk) 21:35, 25 June 2015 (UTC)
You could always ask him. @Jimbo Wales: any thoughts? VQuakr (talk) 06:23, 26 June 2015 (UTC)
@Hansmuller: I've been reading voraciously for about sixty years, and I have always understood "the sum of all knowledge" to mean literally the whole of all the knowledge in the world. It is often used somewhat figuratively but with the same root meaning, e.g.,
To help, to continually help and share, that is the sum of all knowledge; that is the meaning of art. —Eleonora Duse
ISTM that the "arithmetic" of this artistic aphorism is exactly parallel to that of Hillel's expression of the ethic of reciprocity:
That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. That is the whole Torah; the rest is the explanation; go and learn. —Hillel the Elder
As far as I can tell, in the context of Wikipedia, "the sum of all knowledge" means literally all the knowledge there is... to be interpreted as is appropriate to an encyclopedia. Not a "summary", though. --Thnidu (talk) 22:59, 30 June 2015 (UTC)
Thnidu, the phrase is "the sum of all knowledge", not "the summands of all knowledge". If "all the knowledge there is" includes 1, 3 and 4 (as in, the simple arithmetic of 1 + 3 = 4), then Wikipedia's goal is the "4", not the "1" and "3" parts. This is a necessary distinction, because encyclopedias summarize. They do not provide all of the background details about how the sum(mary) came to exist. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:40, 1 July 2015 (UTC)

Multiple listings under "List of people from ___"[edit]

I've been going through List of people from Pennsylvania to clean up the alphabetization within sections and a few other odd things I've found. I noticed that several people are listed there multiple times; e.g.,

Is there a policy about this? Should there be? Please {{Ping}} me to discuss. --Thnidu (talk) 22:23, 29 June 2015 (UTC)

@Thnidu: It would seem to me that if a person is notable for multiple disciplines, then that person belongs in each one separately. For example, Maimonides is correctly categorized as a doctor, rabbi, and philosopher. If each of these categories has a geographical subcategory for a location where the person's functioning in that capacity was notable, then the person would certainly belong in all the relevant categories. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 08:28, 1 July 2015 (UTC)
@Od Mishehu: That makes sense. And could cross-ref between the listings... except that's unlikely to stay consistent as different editors add more. Thanks. --Thnidu (talk) 15:46, 1 July 2015 (UTC)

Democratic Wikipedia[edit]

I had a idea. What if we were like a real country in the sense that we had a Council of Wikimedia staff and a Parliament that would be elected every 4 years? The Council would consist of Wikimedia staff. The Council would be chosen by Jimbo every 4 years. The Parliament would be elected by all the members of Wikipedia including IPs. The Parliament would consist of users and IPs. The parties will be as follows. Wikipedia Democratic Party (WDP) party supporting IP rights Wikimedia Staff Party (WSP) party supporting staff rights. Travel Party (TP) party supporting road articles. --Moran25004 (talk) 09:02, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

Wikipedia is not a democracy. It is a monarchy, and I'm the king. Cambalachero (talk) 18:20, 30 June 2015 (UTC)
Wikipedia is an encyclopaedia. That is all it is, and all it is intended to be. Pretending to be something it isn't is pointless. AndyTheGrump (talk) 18:24, 30 June 2015 (UTC)
More accurately, Wikipedia is an encyclopedia and a community of people who (more or less) enjoy writing an encyclopedia. Dragons flight (talk) 03:39, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Wikipedia is an encyclopedia and part demarchy. It is not (a) government, nation, state, province, region, city, municipality, aristocracy, geniocracy, kratocracy, meritocracy, timocracy, technocracy, autocracy, despotist, dictatorship, fascist, monarchy, absolute, constitutional, diarchy, elective, emirate, bankocracy, corporatocracy, nepotocracy, kakistocracy, kleptocracy, ochlocracy, authoritarian, authoritarian, totalitarian, demarchy, democracy, ergatocracy, kritarchy, netocracy, oligarchy, plutocracy, stratocracy, theocracy, anarchy, anocracy, republic, constitutional, democratic, parliamentary, federal, socialist, adhocracy, bureaucracy, chiefdom, cybersynacy, parliamentary, presidential, nomocracy, capitalist, communist, distributist, feudalist, or socialist. Esquivalience (alt) (talk) 02:36, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
  • And Wikipedia is not a thesaurus ;) AndyTheGrump (talk) 02:38, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
If the way Wikipedia is structured and works has to be equated to a form of government, anarcho-communism is about as good a fit as possible (imho). The article actually mentions concepts such as freeware, creative commons, etc as contemporary examples. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 07:06, 4 July 2015 (UTC)

Non English images[edit]

I think that all non English images should be removed and replaced with English images.--Moran25004 (talk) 10:57, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

Can you give us an example of what you mean by a "non English image"? Do you just mean Images with non-English titles, or are you talking about (for instance) German-language maps? – iridescent 11:02, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

I am talking about for instance German language maps.--Moran25004 (talk) 11:20, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

Images are, by definition, more important for their visual content than for the text. If you can download the image, translate the text and upload it again (as a new image, and mentioning the original one), then do so. Or request someone else to do it. But, in the meantime, don't remove it just because it's not in English. Including a translation in the file description should do it for the moment.

Have also in mind that if the text was not generated by computer software, but part of the original image (such as this one), then you shouldn't upload a modified version. Cambalachero (talk) 13:28, 30 June 2015 (UTC)

Well, you could (as a new file, not replacing the current one). The original is in the public domain and anyone is allowed to create a derivative work. This would be a pointless exercise because nowhere on Wikipedia would the image with the translation be considered an acceptable replacement for the 1685 original.
A more interesting question is this: suppose that some enterprising fellow decided to translate the text from that image into English, German, etc. and released it with a CC BY-SA 3.0 license (either on a personal webpage or by adding it to the summary at [ ]). Would that be usable, or would it be considered WP:OR? --Guy Macon (talk) 17:29, 30 June 2015 (UTC)
Well, the policies in common are different from wikipedia, as they have media files instead of articles. The concept of "original research" is moot, because there is no room for research, original or otherwise. In fact, commons encourages users to create their own content when possible, as well as working with very old media (namely, go and take photos, or open a software and draw your own diagrams). As for a modified version f an old document, it would be treated like an hoax image (because it would not be the original historical one), outside of the Project scope and deleted. Cambalachero (talk) 18:17, 30 June 2015 (UTC)
This is straying off topic, but people do de facto translate work titles, etc in articles (whenever a non-English phrase needs to be cited but its meaning also needs to be provided to an English audience). I don't know if there's a policy on the matter. -sche (talk) 07:45, 1 July 2015 (UTC)

The meaning of accessdate in the cite templates[edit]

Until recently, I thought that the accessdate parameter in the various {{cite ...}} templates signified no more than "The referenced article really existed at this URL on this date." Thanks to User:Number 57, I now know that the accessdate parameter means that the reference was verified to support the article text. However, this is unworkable for at least two reasons. First, if an editor discovers that a URL has changed and updates the URL, but does not wish to take the time to verify that the reference supports the article text, that leaves a dilemma. Leaving accessdate unchanged falsely implies to most users that the displayed URL worked on that date. Removing the accessdate parameter removes the fact that some other editor claimed to have verified that the linked page supported the article text on that date. Second, a specific named reference may be used many times in the text of an article, and some points in the article may be supported by the reference and others not. If a fact checker finds a named reference, with an accessdate, used multiple times, with some uses supported by the reference and others not, what then? I have started discussions on these problems at Help talk:Citation Style 1#accessdate when url changes and Help talk:Citation Style 1#accessdate and named references used multiple times. I suggest continuing this discussion there unless there is a strong reason to comment here. —Anomalocaris (talk) 22:40, 2 July 2015 (UTC)

I would guess at least 99.9% of readers had your same understanding. I did until now and I read more WP and Template docs than 99% of readers. From {{cite news}}: "Note that access-date is the date that the URL was checked to not just be working, but to support the assertion being cited (which the current version of the page may not do)." That is really nice in theory, but completely unworkable in practice. See the discussion here about "own work" CC on uploading files. People are people. You are not getting much traction at Help CS 1, so I would encourage this to continue here, many more eyeballs. Mnnlaxer (talk) 17:37, 6 July 2015 (UTC)

Was "Own work" a disastrous choice for a descriptor for image uploads?[edit]

I do a lot of reviewing new draft articles for AFC, and I absolutely consistently, constantly see people uploading things like logos (especially logos), promotional photos, etc. as "Own work" to Wikimedia Commons. For a huge number of these cases, I'm pretty sure that the person didn't actually create the work, and in the few cases where the uploader does indeed own the work, I don't think they at all understand the implications of "releasing" your own logo under Creative Commons.

Is the problem that "Own work" gets constantly interpreted as "why yes, I am indeed the person who took a screenshot and then hit the upload button!"? Would we be far better of if the option was labeled something more like "I personally am the copyright holder of this work"? Sure, I bet a number of folks would just lie for the sake of convenience, but that's a problem no matter what. But I do think a large chunk of "Own work" labels are from people who simply have no idea what they're actually selecting, and/or no concept of derivative works.

I realize too that short of flashing a screen-wide animated "You must type the words I hereby release this text and images under CC version..." in huge flashing letters (and maybe not even then) we're always going to have people that don't understand the concept of releasing info to CC, but I think that the incredible vagueness of "Own Work" just exacerbates the problem. Is there any remedy to this at all, or do we just shrug and accept that a huge portion of our photos are not actually CC as Wikimedia states, but are mistakenly/illegitimately uploaded copyright works? MatthewVanitas (talk) 14:42, 3 July 2015 (UTC)

I don't know if this is a problem that can be fixed with mere terminology. Assuming that most users are using the upload wizards, the Commons upload wizard has a gigantic cartoon as the first step that explains the concept of derivative work. The English Wikipedia file upload wizard tries desperately to get users to use the Commons wizard if the user declares a free work, but if not, it still asks the user to declare that "I made this myself, from scratch, without copying or incorporating anybody else's creative work". I'm guessing that a lot of users just don't care. Regards, Orange Suede Sofa (talk) 18:23, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
As somebody who has spent a lot of work, over many years, in trying to improve the instructions we give to uploaders, I've come to the rather cynical conclusion that it doesn't really matter how we phrase these things. People will ignore them. It's not because they are difficult to understand (there's really nothing difficult to understand about "I made this myself from scratch", just as there is nothing difficult to understand about "a free replacement could be created", or "this image is the object of discussion in the article"). These things aren't difficult to understand but difficult to accept. People just won't accept anything that boils down to "sorry, no, you really can't use this image". People who come to our upload system just want to know "what do I have to do to upload this picture?" and won't take "nothing, you just can't" for an answer. People come here with their experiences of elsewhere on the internet, where nobody cares about copyright, and naturally assume that here, like elsewhere, copyright notices and licensing rules are just meaningless boilerplate that's there for form's sake and can safely ignored in practice. The only thing that would get the message of "no, we really, really mean that" across to such uploaders would be if somebody stood by to physically slap them in the face if when they proceed. Fut.Perf. 20:54, 3 July 2015 (UTC)
I believe that one of the major cable providers has a patent on physically slapping people in the face when they proceed... --Guy Macon (talk) 06:09, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
For photographs of living people, a very large percentage of those uploaded as "Own work" are NOT photographs taken by the uploader. Particularly in evidence, for instance, are uploaders from Pakistan or India who claim photographs taken from all around the world as "Own work". These are obviously paid editors adding photos to the articles they have written and who don't know enough to provide the copyright documentation (from the photographer), or who do know to do that but would prefer to skirt the easily skirtable rules. Obviously we need to change the wording on uploaded photographs to read "I took this photograph myself" (rather than "Own work"). Softlavender (talk) 06:44, 4 July 2015 (UTC)
For whatever good it may do, I second the motion. --Thnidu (talk) 04:29, 6 July 2015 (UTC)

RfC: Increasing the activity requirement for retaining administrator rights[edit]

I'd like to finally start an RfC that is a follow on from this Idea Lab discussion, regarding increasing the requirements for activity for a user to retain their administrator rights. In 2011 a discussion came to the conclusion that admins who had not performed any edits or admin actions over a period of one year should be desysopped. These editors can request their tools back without a new RfA during a period up to 3 years of inactivity, after which a fresh RfA is required. The current wording of WP:INACTIVITY states that "Admin accounts which have made no edits or administrative actions for at least 12 months may be desysopped."

There has recently been concern regarding those administrators who make very few administrator actions per year - some editors feel that a higher level of activity is expected of administrators to ensure that they are up to date on Wikipedia policies and practices. Others are concerned about the lack of accountability of those administrators who only make one or two actions per year and are otherwise inactive. Another issue is the tracking of the number of administrators on Wikipedia; varying activity means that the number of admins does not accurately represent the number of admins actively carrying out administrative tasks.

Some statistics will be useful in addressing this issue, which I primarily got from this tool query (that link can take a minute or two to open/run, be patient!). There are, as of the time of this posting, 1347 users with administrator rights on the English Wikipedia. Of those, 918 (68%) have made at least one loggable admin action over the past year. 609 have made more than 10 admin actions, with the other 738 (55%) contributing a total of 1092 actions over the past year (about 0.1% of all 1,101,983 actions). Put another way, out of interest, 45% of administrators carry out 99.9% of all administrator actions.

My proposal is this: Changing the text of WP:INACTIVITY from "Admin accounts which have made no edits or administrative actions for at least 12 months may be desysopped." to "Admin accounts which have made no more than 10 administrative actions for at least 12 months may be desysopped." Sam Walton (talk) 12:34, 6 July 2015 (UTC)

Support (higher activity requirement)[edit]

  1. Support. 10 admin actions in 12 months seems about right. We need an up to date criterion that more accurately reflects and quantifies today's admin work. This would not only enable more rigorous pruning, but it might encourage some admins to be more active. At a time when en.Wiki editors and new content may well be converging on the moment when new 'promotions' may not be sufficient to meet desysoping for cause and natural attrition, to be aware of the true strength will help to plan for such a contingecy. --Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 12:37, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  2. Support - an admin that only comes along once or twice a year to keep their status isn't really doing the job they volunteered for. I know real life happens, but even then an effort should be made. Primefac (talk) 12:38, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  3. Support If a user who made less than 10 edit per year ran in an RfA, they would be laughed at. Why would someone who has recived these tools be held to a lower standard, where only one administrative action is required to stay as an admin. Makes no sence to me. Admistators who has been granted these tools should be held at a higher standards. I'm all for this. (tJosve05a (c) 12:41, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  4. Absolutely support – I would have gone with 12 admin actions in 12 months (i.e. averaging to 1 per month). But regardless of whether an Admin is still editing, if they aren't using their tools more than about once per month, it's clear they don't need their tools anymore and should drop back down to "regular editor" status (plus Reviewer and Rollback and whatever) – and they'd still have one three years from that to ask to have the bit restored. This is a perfectly sensible proposal – Admin status shouldn't be a lifetime appointment: editors should have that bit for only as long as they intend to actively use them. --IJBall (contribstalk) 12:56, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  5. Support - You are given the tools to help the project - not to edit the project, editors do that. Spend a few minutes to work on a backlog, and done, and thanks. From the wider view, it will also help the community know when we need to make more admins to do those backlog tasks, that the current holder will, apparently, never do. Alanscottwalker (talk) 13:59, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  6. Support Less than 1 action a month for a year doesn't seem too taxing. Why have the tools if you're going to sit around on your elbows doing sod all? Lugnuts Dick Laurent is dead 14:14, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  7. Support ArbCom has already struck down WP:NOTCOMPULSORY for admins. The amount of activity required is not great, and if it, what do you want the tools for? Hawkeye7 (talk) 09:54, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  8. Support This seems reasonable given that it is fairly easy to get the bit restored following removal due to inactivity. Gamaliel (talk) 23:15, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  9. Support. We have too many hat collectors and not enough active admins. I agree with the statements made Sam Walton, and the statements made above. Adminship should be a "use it or lose it" proposition. If you're not actively using it, then you don't need it. There are many reasons to do this: security (elevated permissions on long-term inactive accounts is a bad idea), staying up-to-date with policy, accountability (making a minimal amount of admin actions per year can easily hide incompetence or bad faith), etc. It's good that people have volunteered to serve the project, but if they're incapable of serving the project, then they should step down. To retain your elevated privileges when you are not using them seems like hat collection to me. Wikipedia will welcome you back and restore your privileges once you are able to contribute again. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 00:52, 8 July 2015 (UTC)

Oppose (higher activity requirement)[edit]

  1. Oppose I have a couple of concerns here. First, it's not clear to me (without several examples) why it is a problem for a sysop not to use their tools often - the question of measuring administrator activity to me speaks more of a misuse of metrics than of an issue with sysop behaviour. Second, how is "administrative actions" counted here? Surely not only logged actions would count. Third, it does not readily appear to me that low tool usage by whichever metric is a reliable predictor of one's understanding of policy, or that accountability is lacking for low frequency activity. Also, as a neutral question, how would this proposal shift the workload distribution? Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 12:46, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
    Based on the stats shown above, it appears it wouldn't shift the workload – it is still true that, currently, 50% of Admins do all the (logged) work. Now, it would be interesting to see if the other 50% is doing unlogged actions (and how many), but I'm not sure such stats will be readily available... --IJBall (contribstalk) 13:07, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  2. Oppose as being unenforceable, and per my reasoning below. The goal here, it seems, is to keep admin from gaming the system, but under current policy, once desysopped, the admin can just go to WP:BN and get the bit back, the same is true under this proposal. And how does this figure into the 3 years of inactivity? They have been active editing, lets say, so the 3 year period would never begin. It would mean that 10 years later, they could get the bit back as long as they edited some because they never went completely inactive to start the 3 year period. There are other holes I can poke, but this should be sufficient. Simply won't work, even if the proposal has good intentions. You can't piecemeal the policy, you have to rewrite the entire resysop policy to make any of this work, and that isn't trivial. Dennis Brown - 12:51, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  3. Oppose. First, one of the most useful skills an admin can possess is knowing when to not take any action. This proposal devalues this skill and instead encourages action even when it would be better to either talk or do nothing. Second, this proposal assumes most, if not all, meaningful admin action show up in the logs. This is just not the case. An obvious example is editing of protected pages, an action routinely performed by admins working on the various sections of the Main page or monitoring Wikipedia:Main Page/Errors. Are these actions of no value to the project just because they are not explicitly logged as an admin action? --Allen3 talk 13:27, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  4. Oppose I'd be in favor of increasing requirements, but not of dropping general edits from the definition of activity. We don't want people taking admin actions just to meet a quota. Rhoark (talk) 14:02, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  5. Oppose per Allen3. In addition, continuing activity requirements placed upon volunteers should be based on an ongoing expense for the organization just for keeping them on the rolls (like having to pay a medical doctor to conduct an annual physical exam of the volunteer), or the potential to do serious harm due to outdated skills (like a volunteer emergency medical technician who never bothered to pick up her Naloxone kit). Neither consideration applies to Wikipedia administrators. Jc3s5h (talk) 14:17, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  6. Oppose We should not be desysoping people for inactivity at all in my opinion. We are volunteers after all and should not have some quota. Chillum 14:47, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  7. Oppose I am on the fence as to whether we should be desysopping more admins for inactivity, as they are not harming the project by having the admin flag. I am opposed to the solution above because it will do absolutely nothing as Dennis points out below with his scenarios. This would require a complete rewrite to make it workable, not just a change to the one sentence. -- GB fan 15:20, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  8. Oppose As in all responsible volunteer positions, admin work takes a toll and can lead to burnout. We want admins to be able to step back and take a tool break when they need without feeling this is the end. The last thing we need is burnt out admins making problematic usage of tools because when they are not at their best just because otherwise they lose their tools. On a side note, I always thought inactivity desysoping was because when an account comes back after that long it is hard to tell if it is the same person, or if they have changed, or if Wikipedia has changed. If the admin has not been using tools, but has been editing actively, they have not exactly lost touch of the community. They are probably aware of changes in policy and recent ArbCom cases. We also probably know if their judgement or behaviour has taken a turn for the worse. In this situation, what is the problem with a probably trustworthy admin having tools they don't use, or use rarely? Happy Squirrel (talk) 15:30, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
    Actually, one of the main reasons we desysop is security. To reduce the chance of a unused account being hacked while the admin isn't monitoring that email address. Many admin use dedicated email addresses for Wikipedia. I could think of a few PR companies that would pay a chunk of change to buy that hacked account, btw. Dennis Brown - 15:41, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
    In that case, an admin who has not used the tools, but has been editing should not be desysoped since they are not a security threat. They should be immediately aware if their account has been compromised. Happy Squirrel (talk) 20:44, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  9. Oppose In a perfect world, no one would have to perform any administrative actions. This feels like requiring police officers to make traffic ticket quotas.--Jorm (talk) 15:37, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  10. Oppose. The inactivity desysop was created to reduce the security risk associated with unattended admin accounts, which is reasonable. This proposal seems motivated by an entirely different animating principle, namely that admins who have low activity can't be trusted to do the right thing in the future. I don't buy into that principle at all. The core attribute of adminship is trust, and while trust can rise and fall for many reasons (some of which are not even directly connected to admin behavior), I don't believe that trust should turn on how many logged admin actions one creates. Dragons flight (talk) 16:18, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  11. Oppose - on the face of it, I'm generally against proposals which will add to administrator attrition even a little without substantially improving the encyclopedia, and this proposal fails in that aspect. I'm also with other opposers who have pointed out that this isn't in the spirit of WP:INACTIVITY which is meant to protect the encyclopedia from genuinely abandoned accounts. Ivanvector 🍁 (talk) 16:23, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  12. Oppose FWIW 10 actions a year is hardly "high activity". Next (as others have mentioned) this is much to much like a policeman having a ticket quota. It leads to taking an action just to take it and not considering whether the action is the right one. MarnetteD|Talk 16:30, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  13. Oppose Per Dennis Brown, I can't see it being any use. Per Rhoark, we shouldn't be requiring quotas - even if all that's needed is to visit CSD once a year and delete the first 10, 12, or however many, things on the list without reading the articles. As to the RfA comment, quite right, we wouldn't hand out a mop to someone with 10 edits a year. But the person concerned here isn't at RfA. It only takes five mins to perform 10 deletions. Does it prove anything other than that someone has the password for the account? One action also proves that. One edit also proves it. But who has it? Peridon (talk) 16:55, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  14. Oppose I think the current position where admins have the tool removed after going completely inactive for 12 months is about right. We should be be quite ready to remove the tools where an issue arises with that admin, but except for that an admin for makes any useful contributions should be welcomed. Also there are actions that only administrators can take that are not logged as such and as Dennis Brown says there is no way of tracking those. I do support however changing the statistic of measuring how many admins we have that are defined as "active" to make how that is measured stricter (or have a new stricter measure added), so we can measure how many significantly active admins we really have, but we should not desysop those who don't meet it. (I should declare an interest here in that I think I would have been desysopped under this proposal back in 2013, before getting sucked back in May 2014 and making thousands of logged actions this year) Davewild (talk) 19:02, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  15. Oppose, I see no evidence that what this RFC aims to fix is a problem and this problem is serious enough to warrant further policy creep. Max Semenik (talk) 20:22, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  16. Oppose Per Dennis and Happy Squirrel. Furthermore, in my opinion, all this will do is increase the potential burn-out for the "remaining" admins and cause us to have a net decrease in available admins in the not-too-distant future. -- Avi (talk) 20:48, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  17. Oppose. An inactive admin has the potential to become an active admin again. Desysop them and they lose that potential for little good reason. {{Nihiltres|talk|edits}} 21:22, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  18. Oppose, for several reasons. 1) I posted some similar statistics a couple of months ago, with the observation that the percentage of admins making no logged actions has changed very little over time (~33%) while a smaller number of admins have been accounting for a larger proportion of total admin actions. I would oppose any change with the potential to further decrease diversity in overall admin decision-making. 2) Per Allen3, who has correctly identified the importance of knowing how and when to do nothing. We should encourage people to do more nothing around here. 3) There's no evidence presented that there is currently a problem with the activity criteria, or that this proposal would solve any specific problem. Doing nothing about non-problems is just as important collectively as it is individually. You know what to do with things that ain't broke, right? COI: I was desysopped under the existing activity criteria, but it wouldn't have made any difference if this proposal had been in effect. Opabinia regalis (talk) 21:28, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  19. Oppose - I'm for a higher requirement than one anything every 12 months, but I don't think that someone who is an active or semi-active editor should be desysopped. --B (talk) 21:33, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  20. Oppose in its current format because IMO it is unfeasible and may deter any existing admins or put too much of a "quota" on them. However, lower the threshold and I'll see if I can support it. I agree with Dennis Brown's comment that the rule can be easily be gamed, so it's not feasible in any format, unless you change or eliminate the 3-year re-RfA requirement as well. Epic Genius (talk) 04:08, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  21. Oppose - While I appreciate the need for administrators to be more active and up-to-date with the community, Wikipedia is not compulsory, and the spirit of that policy is that we shouldn't focus on demanding more from other editors—administrators and their toolset included. I agree with others who have said this might feel like putting a "quota" on them. In other words, the focus should be on improving the encyclopedia, not worrying about whether you've logged 10 admin things this year. That being said, the current policy of desysopping if an admin is completely separated from the project—no edits, no logged actions whatsoever—for 12 months makes sense. In the current case, we're not demanding more, we just want to make sure you're up to speed after a year-long break. Mz7 (talk) 05:43, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  22. Oppose as per the above. We're not creating an incentive to remain active, we're just making it slightly harder to avoid going inactive. Also, the concerns about actions that would not fit into this metric (declined unblocks, for example) are worth looking at as well. UltraExactZZ Said ~ Did 16:15, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  23. Oppose the current status quo of removing totally inactive admin accounts makes sense, but having an arbitrary quota does not. Not only does this not address any problem in particular, it unfairly discriminates against non-stereotypical admins who have the nerve to do activities which may leave them unable to access Wikipedia regularly, such as having kids, taking trips, doing missionary work, military service, etc. This would impair the diversity of the Wikipedia admin group even worse than it currently is. Andrew Lenahan - Starblind 22:47, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  24. oppose none of the concerns listed as rationale for the change are of any actual concern. no "less active" admin has to my knowledge ever made a bad administrative action based on "old" interpretations. this is an attempt to fix a problem that doesnt exist. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 23:01, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  25. Oppose Since there is no cloud, desysopping of someone that is editing can be reversed by request. What is the new activity requirement accomplishing? Dormant accounts with no activity get desysopped and in three years it requires RFA. This will do nothing to prevent an admin from simply requesting the tools back when they are desysopped. I'd rather have them game the system with one edit a year then to bog down bureaucrats with re-sysop requests when that becomes easier than the one edit per year game. In essence, this is replacing "one edit" with "one crat request" and is more burdensome. --DHeyward (talk) 23:12, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  26. Oppose. It isn't that hard to do 10 admin actions in one year. If the purpose of this is to desysop the ones who make a few edits per year to retain adminship, how hard is it to do a deletion, block at AIV, AfD closure, [etc.] every month; or do a batch of them in a hour or so? The quota can be made higher so that there needs to be considerable activity to retain adminship; but admins may go semi-active for reasons out of their control. This change is also prone to ten times more wikilawyering and differing interpretations. Esquivalience t 00:30, 8 July 2015 (UTC)

Discussion (higher activity requirement)[edit]

  • That is a sticky situation, as we are learning at AE. Consensus seems to be that doing certain actions that only admin are allowed to do, ie: close an AE discussion, are indeed "admin actions" yet no log is shown of it. I would also argue that the quality of an admin isn't measured by the times you block someone, but arguably by the number of blocks you can avoid by careful mediation. The fact that you have the tools and the editors know you CAN block if needed, is sometimes helpful in an edit war, for instance. The same for ANI/AN3, an admin can lend his expertise in an official capacity without actually using the tools, in what is arguably an admin role. Much of the power of the admin bit is when you don't use it. On the opposite side, you might have admin that only use the tools on articles they themselves are interested in and editing. Moving over redirects and the like. Even though they are only serving their own interests (and ours, of course), they wouldn't be under scrutiny because they fall on the "ok" side of this measuring stick. Their contributions to the community, however, may actually be less than the admin that mentors, mediates and monitors. I'm not arguing against the logic in the proposal, but I think it would be hard to be completely fair and mistakes could happen too often, as proposed. Dennis Brown - 12:44, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Couldn't most of this concern be satisfied by a "better accounting" of Admin actions? I remember this point was made in the previous discussion, and it does seem like there are "holes" in this system – "Admin-type actions" that AdminStats isn't "catching" in its count, and probably should be. --IJBall (contribstalk) 13:01, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  • I do not think this is a problem. First, most (if not all) of the admins who are inactive are really inactive - not that they are active in non-logged actions and not active in logged actions. Making 10 logged actions takes 5 minutes - for example, we have about 2000 broken redirects which are amenable to speedy deletion. And, if this is a real issue, i.e. an admin is active in a non-logged part but for whatever reason does not want to make logged actions - they will be perfectly capable explaining this to crats, pointing out their activity, and avoid desysopping.--Ymblanter (talk) 13:28, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Per your reasoning, "most (if not all) of the admins who are inactive are really inactive", this makes the proposal an unnecessary layer of bureaucracy then. It means it is answering a question that no one is asking. I think the current policy makes sense, and it could be tweaked, but adding something like this would require rewriting the whole policy due to all the loopholes, and I'm not convinced there is any real benefit from the effort. I'm not arguing against the principle, but this proposal is unworkable, and I lack the imagination to propose a better one at this time. Dennis Brown - 14:43, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Let me offer some scenarios...
Scenario 1: I quit using the tools but still do a little editing each month. One year from now, you desysop me. I go to WP:BN and ask for my tools back. Policy says I can do this as they weren't taken under a cloud and there isn't a 3 year period without edits. Proposal doesn't work.
Scenario 2: I quit using the tools but still do a little editing each month. I get the notice that I'm about to be desysoped (required), so I quickly go and make 10 admin actions so I won't be. You know, sloppy RFPP protections or close a few early deletes at AFD, no need to be good actions, just actions. Proposal doesn't work.
Scenario 3: I quit using the tools but still do a little editing each month. I get notice I'm about to be desysopped (required). I let it happen. I continue to edit some every month for years. 5 years later, I go reclaim my admin tools because there was never a 3 year period of inactivity, and policy says there MUST be 3 years with NO editor activity to force me back to RFA. Proposal doesn't work.
It isn't about being against the principle, it is that this is a completely unworkable proposal as written. The entire policy would have to be rewritten, "admin action" has to be defined, there has to be a way to search for admin actions that aren't logged, etc. Good intentions, but bad idea. Dennis Brown - 14:54, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
I think the problem you are talking about at is that of people who are not here to create content, and this proposal is not really intended to address that. Hawkeye7 (talk) 12:19, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  • If something like this were to move forward, I would prefer something similar to what I've workshopped at Wikipedia talk:Bureaucrats#Activity requirement; allowing a longer period of time, and commenting or acting as an administrator counting as administrator activity (to recognize that many administrative acts aren't necessarily reflected in Special:Log). This could be rather difficult to determine in any automated fashion, mind (much moreso than bureaucrats, anyway). –xenotalk 20:30, 6 July 2015 (UTC)
  • The only real way to do this sort of thing would be to add a flag to edits, similar to the minor edit flag, that would label them as edits made in an administrative capacity. Actually, if used properly, that might solve quite a few problems, wouldn't it? (I should send this to VPT!) Take the current proposal. Did you close an AFD? Tag it as an Admin edit, and there's one administrative action. Decline an unblock? There's two. And so on. But until we have something like that, this proposal doesn't work. UltraExactZZ Said ~ Did 16:12, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Interesting idea! It would solve a lot of problems. –xenotalk 16:23, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Yes, that is an interesting proposal – I don't recall anyone suggesting this before. --IJBall (contribstalk) 20:36, 7 July 2015 (UTC)
  • Comment This is similar with what the Commons requires where they define "active" as 6 admin actions over the previous 6 months (without a discussion). However, if there is some reason why an admin is inactive (work, illness, travel, real life), they just have to post a notice within that 6 months and they are considered active. If the definition of "inactive" is broadened, I think there should be a similar proviso where communication with an inactive admin would restart the 6 month period. People have legitimate reasons for becoming inactive.Liz Read! Talk! 20:05, 7 July 2015 (UTC)

RfC: Increasing the activity requirement for retaining bureaucrat rights[edit]

In light of Sam's proposal above, now may be a good time for me to gather opinions on a similar proposal now at Wikipedia talk:Bureaucrats#RfC: Increasing the activity requirement for retaining bureaucrat rights. –xenotalk 21:11, 6 July 2015 (UTC)