Wikipedia:Village pump (miscellaneous)/Archive 17

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Village pumps: PolicyTechnicalProposals (persistent)Miscellaneous


Non free (both in price and freedom) references[edit]

I have noticed reference links to subscriber content such as the Wall Street Journal versus ad-supported or just plain free as in price websites are common. Is this compatible with Wikipedia's goal of a free encyclopedia both in price and freedom? Tcrow777 Talk 00:32, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

If there is an equally reliable source that is free to access, then it would certainly be preferable, but we shouldn't require all sources to be free - that would seriously restrict how complete we can make our articles. --Tango (talk) 00:41, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
I was not suggesting that all references should be free or free, I am just saying that they should only be used when there is no reliable other option. Tcrow777 Talk 00:51, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
Newspapers are all, ahem, "free"—at the library. Linking to an online versions which requires a subscription doesn't render the content, originally published in paper form (assuming it was, as is the case in most "online versions"), any less free, but does provide a way to access it that is less burdensome for many than actually going to a library. The same is true of books. We want real paper books to be used—the mainstay of reliable sources—but if they're not scanned to Google, the only way to access cited books is to buy them or, again, you're off to the library. We really need to parse what we mean by free. Of course, between two sources of equal reliability, we should opt for the more accessible if no other concern is present. However, between two sources of equal reliability, if the one that is more accessible is also more or much more likely to be ephemeral, I think we should go with the more permanent (or list both alternatives). But free refers to our content and the ability to freely redistribute under the GFDL. It does not refer primarily to the sources we cite to, even if there is an affinity that should inform the application of policy.--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 03:36, 30 October 2008 (UTC)
Compromise - do both. In scientific WP articles the gold standard is scientific journals, few of which are free. However if I find a good free version at (often ephemeral) I'll add the url, and if I find a free report in the "popular science" press that is faithful to the journal article (chekc this!) I'll cite that within the same "ref" tag. -- Philcha (talk) 13:20, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

Scientific journals and newspapers are available ot the public, for free, at major libraries throughout the world. Anyone can walk in the the library at my university and browse any journal in its general collection. The fact that an online version of the journal may not be free does not at all mean that the journal itself is not freely available. The link to the non-free online version is just a convenience for editors who may have access; the reference itself tells everyone how to find the journal in print in a library. — Carl (CBM · talk) 14:11, 30 October 2008 (UTC)

So they should be available in a library, but I thought the Internet was the worlds largest library. ;) Tcrow777 Talk 22:28, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

There is no cabal, but it sure looks like one[edit]

Anyone who wanders into the inner parts of Wikipedia will notice that there is a lot of drama. There are basically two sides: the cabal and the rebels. The cabal consists of the upper echelons of administrators and other leaders. They are the people with power here. ArbCom. Jimbo himself. The rebels are a rag-tag team of anyone who opposes the cabal.

Like many people, my natural reaction was to side with the rebels. Nobody cheers for the empire after all.

What I have come to realize is that there really is no cabal. Most admins and other people with power here really just want to help make Wikipedia better. It's a tough and thankless job dealing with troublemakers. The "rebels" on the other hand are mostly people who were blocked or reprimanded for good reasons. When visiting the rebel hangouts I soon noticed that aside from all wanting to dethrone the cabal, they all have vastly different ideas about what needs to change in Wikipedia. 90% of those ideas are crap and would break everything that is good with Wikipedia.

Still, the rebel camp keeps attracting new recruits. People keep voting against admins accused of being in the cabal when they apply for Bureaucratship. They vote for prolific rebels at RfA. There is a widespread distrust of admins among ordinary editors. ArbCom members and the highly valuable admins who dare take on difficult cases keep quitting because their hard work earns them nothing by enemies and hatred. Former ArbCom member and bureaucrat UninvitedCompany just left the project and left some thoughtworthy points on his user page.

The solution I believe, is that not only must Justice be done; it must also be seen to be done. While there mostly is no cabal, it looks like there is. Admins are elected for life. The only way to de-admin is though the even more cabal-looking ArbCom. There is a secret admin mailing list and IRC channel. They probably aren't plotting conspiracies and canvassing for votes there, but with no way to know people will assume the worst. Wikipedia needs proper checks and balances. If there is a way to remove abusive admins, then ordinary editors and will able to trust and support the admins. RfA wouldn't be such a nightmare.

Also, pages like WP:TINC(There Is No Cabal) really aren't helping. When I see that, I think "Who do you think you're fooling? If there is no cabal you wouldn't need a page saying so." Pages like List of cabals, Rouge admin and the "Cabal appoved" stamps some put on their user pages are even worse. Ridiculing those who think there is a cabal only gets them sympathy.

Finally, admins and Wikipedia veterans need to be a lot more respectful towards ordinary editors. The are many people who have a lot of knowledge, are good writers and have time to commit but who don't know the Wikipedia rules and traditions very well. Treating them like criminals does not help. An example is the great non-free image purge of 2007. Just about all editors got their talk pages filled with nasty templates about violating image rules because they didn't have the right stamp in field 10c of the neccessary paperwork in triplicate. Anyone who complained about it was shouted at. ArbCom eventually put their feet down against that behavior, but it took over a year and who knows how many lost editors. --Apoc2400 (talk) 20:37, 3 November 2008 (UTC)

The reason why there isn't a process for demoting admins (beyond decisions of ArbCom and Jimbo) is that none of the proposed processes have been able to make a solid argument that they would be superior to the existing process. After the latest failed proposal, I slapped together Wikipedia:De-adminship proposal checklist. Have good answers to all of those questions, or your proposal will fail. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 20:49, 3 November 2008 (UTC)
  • As one of the 'rebels' that you mention, I'd like to clear a few things up. No one really thinks there's one big cabal. That's stupid. Most of the administrators that I've had problems with probably wouldn't be capable of that kind of thing anyway. The problems are when things approach a cabal-like state; i.e, ArbCom gets more and more power, the ability to try cases without notifying anyone if it deems fit, the ability to arbitrarily create policy at will and contravene consensus whenever it feels like it; with the proposed abuse filter extension, there would be no kind of community oversight, only those with the abuse filter view bit would be able to look at the filters, creating an environment where administrators could edit the filters to disallow dissidents and consensus contrary to their views and disguise it as something else in the logs without any kind of ability from the community to discern what's going on; the proposed sourcing adjudication board... these are all things that centralize dangerous amounts of power to a few people unchecked by the community, and that's something that deeply bothers me.

    It isn't that a cabal does or doesn't exist; if Wikipedia was like it was back in the good old days, it wouldn't matter; everything was open to the community, and the community had the power to say "No". Now that the community no longer has that power (or at least, a significantly weakened version of it), a cabal is much, much, much more dangerous, and is something that has to be watched for carefully before it gets too far out of control.

    Coming up with a process to remove admins from power that doesn't involve ArbCom is a step in the right direction. More transparency would be a step in the right direction. Taking the power to create policy from ArbCom and returning it exclusively to the community would be a step in the right direction. Checks and balances, as you say, would go a long way toward restoring the trust of the community. Celarnor Talk to me 21:53, 3 November 2008 (UTC)

    • … and as one of the administrators, I can attest that I've never, in all of my years here, been invited to (let alone participated in) any secret mailing lists or IRC channels. Everything I have done as an administrator is on-wiki. Uncle G (talk) 12:38, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

User:Raul654 has too much power. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:34, 5 November 2008 (UTC)

I've found the introductions project[edit]

Hello! I thought I had seen a Wikipedia Project for fixing and maintaining introductions to articles to ensure they gave a general overview of the contents. Was it a dream or there is a project like that? Any information is surely welcome. Lwyx (talk) 22:02, 5 November 2008 (UTC)

Editor assistance needed cleaning up after a disruptive school project[edit]

Please take a moment to review the 2007 and 2008 edits in one or more of the articles listed at Wikipedia:Administrators' noticeboard/IncidentArchive491#Disruptive school project?.

  • The edits will be in the months September–December of either year.
  • The accounts making the edits are identifiable by the "229" or "214" suffixes to their names. Some of the accounts have user pages and are bluelinked, note. So don't look for redlinks.
  • Do not assume that all of the edits are automatically bad. They are not. Some have improved articles with verifiable and neutral content. See the entry for daguerrotype for what to do in such cases. This is why review is needed.
  • If all of the edits have since been reverted, please note (linking to the diffs) that on the list and cross the entry off. See the entry for alphabet for an example of what to do.
  • If the edits to an article are questionable, please either clean the article up or draw attention to the edits on the article's own talk page.
  • Please sign any crossings off that you do, so that we know who reviewed what.

Many hands make light work. One article reviewed and cleaned up/reverted/otherwise dealt with by you is one less article for other editors to deal with. Thank you. Uncle G (talk) 12:56, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

Arbitration Committee Elections 2008 - Request for Questions to the Candidates[edit]

Nominations for the December 2008 Arbitration Committee Elections will be accepted from 10 November to 24 November, and voting is scheduled to run from 1 December to 15 December. In an effort to give all candidates the chance to answer general questions about themselves and their candidacy, we are currently soliciting input from the community. Any editor who wishes to submit questions for all the candidates should do so by visiting Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee Elections December 2008/Candidate statements/Questions/General and following the instructions. On 17 November, the list of questions will be posted to each candidate's questions page, where they will provide answers (Subsequent nominees will have their question pages created with the same list). Questions to specific candidates may be posted at that time, as well. Please discuss at the election talk page if you have any questions about the question process. Thanks, UltraExactZZ Claims ~ Evidence 14:00, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

Wrong information. on harry Potter site[edit]

the first book wansn't Harry Potter and the philosipher's stone it's Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:04, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

"Philosopher's Stone" was the UK (i.e., original) title. It was, apparently, deemed too esoteric for us Americans. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 17:16, 6 November 2008 (UTC)
I might be wrong, but it seems to me that the proper place to discuss this issue is the article on the Harry Potter book series. Lwyx (talk) 19:23, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

unifying login[edit]

So I'm unifying my login across projects with the nifty new single-login feature, and I have a question. I need to usurp "my" username here on en.wp. (I'm "scs" everywhere else, but "ummit" here.) Can I / should I get my edit history transferred when this happens? Is it held to be a good or a bad idea? —Steve Summit (talk) 03:35, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

You can request usurpation (which will transfer your edit history) here. Scs (talk · contribs) doesn't have any edits, so there should be no issues with usurpation. Mr.Z-man 03:46, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Special:UnwatchedPages free giveaway![edit]

Special:UnwatchedPages pages needs you! Currently, and for good reason, this is an admin only page. If you are a non-admin and would like to help bring the (rather large) list down, drop a note here and get a list of 2, 20, 200, or however many you want. John Reaves 21:41, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

The list is useless. For those who are so eager to view its current state, go crazy! --MZMcBride (talk) 04:03, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

Accounts do I need one for each wiki?[edit]

I created an account in wiki dictionary and I cannot log in through the wikipedia. I logged out of wikidictionary and tried logging into Wikipedia. It says that I have an account but it won't recognize me. If I log into dictionary I can get in. Finding help for account information around here is a joke. A test in tolerance that fails me today. Mar —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:13, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Yes you do need an account for each wiki. I agree it is REALLY irritating! It's the first thing I would change if I had the power to do so. Roger (talk) 16:47, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
No, you don't need one account per wiki. See m:Help:Unified login. --B. Wolterding (talk) 17:03, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
Its news to me, Thanks! I think this information should be MUCH more readily available. Roger (talk) 17:20, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
If you created an account anytime in the past few months, you should be able to log in here with the username and password you registered with, if you aren't automatically logged in (unless your IP is blocked from account creation). If your account is older, you'll have to go to wiktionary and use Special:MergeAccount to create a global account. Mr.Z-man 17:16, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
Just done it. Thanks for making my wiki-experience a lot easier! Roger (talk) 17:28, 7 November 2008 (UTC)


Would someone please remove the 2-inch wide solid blood-red chiclet from the top of every Wikipedia page? It is really distracting for someone trying to work on this project. Or at least make the control called “hide” do what it promises. Michael Z. 2008-11-05 07:02 z

Hear hear! Hide should hide the ugly banner, not reduce it in size. -- Longhair\talk 07:43, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
I have just donated...and still get the plea! Can someone sort this out please? doktorb wordsdeeds 07:52, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
This has been brought up at the technical section, including a way for registered users to completely hide the banner. I fully agree on the obnoxiousness of the banner, but even as an admin I can't do anything about it, as it's a central notice, which can only be touched by Foundation lackeys. —Slowking Man (talk) 07:57, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
It is the most obnoxious page element I've ever seen on WP—ugly and distracting, and very likely counterproductive: if I were going to donate, I'd change my mind when I saw it. (talk) 20:00, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
I concur. If I hadn't already donated this month, I wouldn't to take a stand against obnoxious advertisements like that. Celarnor Talk to me 20:55, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
  • Remedy: Under my preferences/gadgets is a box to check to "Suppress display of the fundraiser site notice." Hooray! (It was driving me mad too, until I discovered that.) Gwinva (talk) 21:00, 5 November 2008 (UTC)
Has this option been removed? I don't see it. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 06:41, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
Try again. It disappeared for a while this evening, but it's back now. I don't know what the problem was. Gwinva (talk) 06:52, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Remember kiddies, donate now! Donate-donatedonatedonatedonatedonatedonate... Clark89 (talk) 21:33, 5 November 2008 (UTC)

Many thanks to you, oh wise and noble Gwinva, for the tip on how to suppress the "Donate Now" notice! Mudwater (Talk)
No problem! :) Gwinva (talk) 06:53, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Also see the technical village pump sections "Support Wikipedia: a non-profit project" omnipresent banner---Dismiss banner--The donation box looks really silly (AND SECTION JUST AFTER Donation banner suppression gadget). These two for complications resultant—inference with top-of-page iconsrequest password for saving preferences. Also short section;an idea for smaller banner at proposals Obtrusive banner. Clark89 (talk) 23:54, 7 November 2008 (UTC)

Donation Requests at Page Tops Does not Match Wikipedia Design[edit]

I'm not contesting requesting donations. I simply think that the aesthetic design of the donation request panel does not fit with the rest of Wikipedia. Particularly the gradient-based donation graph, one would be hard-pressed to find something similar to that on another section of Wikipedia. Its a beautiful design, I'm just questioning whether its the best design to fit with the rest of Wikipedia, aesthetically. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:12, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

The "remedy" doesn't work. I've checked the box in Gadgets, clicked saved; it says my changes are saved but when I logout and login again it's baaaack. And my goodness, it is ugly. It looks like something I might have designed the first time I used MacPaint in 1990. Rivertorch (talk) 06:59, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
It disappeared for a short while when someone complained due process wasn't followed. All resolved now. Try again. Gwinva (talk) 07:03, 7 November 2008 (UTC)
Yes, it seems to be working now. Thanks. Rivertorch (talk) 07:23, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

Is anyone else bothered by this?[edit]

I think it's a little odd when WP uses copyrighted pictures, under fair use, on articles that are hostile to the owners of the copyrights. I have run into this a couple of times before. The latest is being discussed at Talk:Barbara West (TV news anchor). Steve Dufour (talk) 01:14, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

Fair use permits this - indeed, many of the explicit roles of fair use, such as parody and criticism, are necessarily hostile to the subject of the work. This is considered to be for the public good. On the other hand, there is the danger that it will invite legal action, so we must be particularly careful that we meet the criteria for fair use in such a case so that we have a defense. Dcoetzee 02:24, 8 November 2008 (UTC)
The above is correct. Obviously, critical use falls under fair use; if it didn't, then anyone could simply stifle discussion of something by restricting its use via copyright in some draconian way. As it has been pointed out to you in the article history, the normal course of action if you're challenging the status of the image in the way that you are is to do so at the image page itself, not on the articles that use it (even if it's the only one). Celarnor Talk to me 07:04, 8 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I've nominated the picture for deletion as you suggest. Steve Dufour (talk) 18:48, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

BTW I have seen many discussions about what pictures to use or not use in an article without the discussion being taken to an IfD. Steve Dufour (talk) 19:11, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

donation goal of 6 MILLION DOLLARS?![edit]

i find it mildly hard to believe that the upkeep for wikipedia and its servers is anywhere near 6 million... ya. what's all the money for? (talk) 04:10, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

Overheads[1]. Julia Rossi (talk) 06:33, 8 November 2008 (UTC)
Also see [2]. -- Rick Block (talk) 06:42, 8 November 2008 (UTC)
We get a lot of visitors, that requires a lot of servers and a lot of bandwidth. Running all that requires a lot of technical staff (well, actually we manage on just a handful, but we could really do with a lot of technical staff). There is then a whole load of other administrative stuff that needs doing (legal mumbo jumbo, financial mumbo jumbo, etc). Then there are various programs being run to try and further our goals and enhance the effectiveness of the projects. It all adds up. --Tango (talk) 00:13, 9 November 2008 (UTC)

I love you[edit]

Hi. What is an appropriate place on Wikipedia to express my appreciation for the awesome people who create and edit and maintain articles? I just want to say that I am full of love and appreciation towards all of you and if I could I would go and hug each one of you individually. Seriously this work you are doing here is awesome. I am an editor too and have started a handful of articles and edited many more but I have the feeling I take more than I give and I just want to express my thanks. Sorry if this is not an appropriate place to say it, please let me know what is. You all rock, fellas!! :) ReluctantPhilosopher (talk) 12:27, 8 November 2008 (UTC)

Thank you. The best way to express your love is to edit =P. You could go round and give us all barnstars if you want... Dendodge TalkContribs 12:31, 8 November 2008 (UTC)
Thank you ReluctantPhilosopher – Luv right back atcha, and keep up the good work – Julia Rossi (talk) 21:57, 8 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the kind words, RP. One place you might consider posting such praise is Wikipedia:A nice cup of tea and a sit down. Grutness...wha? 23:54, 8 November 2008 (UTC)
We love you too! This is as good a place as any, I think. Happy editing! --Tango (talk) 00:06, 9 November 2008 (UTC)
Here's as good a place as any! Thank you for your positive sentiment. :-) If you want to continue to make people feel good about their contributions, a good way to do that is to look out for substantial positive edits and leave "thank you" notes on the editor's talk page. Happy editing! Dcoetzee 09:39, 9 November 2008 (UTC)


Whose ingenious idea was this? (Note that I'm not complaining, I just find it hilarious for some reason.) MuZemike (talk) 04:30, 9 November 2008 (UTC)

Crotalus horridus's, presumably. It seems to have only one edit and no links (other than the one in the title of this section), so I can't immediately tell what it might've been created for. You're probably best off asking the creator if you're curious. —Ilmari Karonen (talk) 11:38, 9 November 2008 (UTC)

Template:Otheruses in articles with brackets[edit]

The Template Template:Otheruses should not be used in articles with brackets, since you get there only following a already qualified link in another text or a disambiguation page, not by searching. I removed all those cases in the German wikipedia (about 50), but there are much more in the English WP. You can find them by searching for ") (transclusion)" on

Couldn't that job be done easily by a bot?

Please discuss here: Wikipedia_talk:Disambiguation#Template:Otheruses_in_articles_with_brackets

--Abe Lincoln (talk) 11:59, 9 November 2008 (UTC)

Suspected copyright violations[edit]

If you are looking for something to do, WP:Suspected copyright violations could do with some more editors. The backlog there is more or less permanent and the job is fairly simple: either remove false positives, tag for history merge, rewrite, tag for deletion or move it to WP:Copyright Problems. None of this requires admin privileges, and non-admins are more than welcome to work there — in fact almost all of the editors who work there regularly or semi-regularly are non-admins. – Sadalmelik 10:05, 10 November 2008 (UTC)

Agreed. Just a word of caution though. Other people often violate our copyright so when you find that we have the same text as some other website you must be thorough in investigating whether Wikipedia copied it or whether it copied Wikipedia. The latter is far more common than you might think. -- Derek Ross | Talk 15:38, 10 November 2008 (UTC)

The earliest sockpuppet to be unmasked...[edit]

I regularly see quality control volunteers argue in {{afd}} discussions that a biographical article should be deleted, even if it is written from a neutral point of view, and cites verifiable, authoritative references -- because it does not cover the ordinary biographical milestones, like where and when the individual was born, or studied.

I regularly ask those quality control volunteers to consider "false Geber". He was the first person to describe the process for the purification and use of Sulfuric acid. Isaac Asimov thought his work was significant that he had an entry for his in his biographical encyclopedia of the World's top 1,000 most important scientists -- even though historians knew practially nothing about him, not his name, not when or where he lived, or his religion or occupation.

I suggest to them that while the milestones of a person's life are definitely worth including, if we can verify them, not having them available is a very poor reason to suggest we should suppress coverage of what we do know about what they did.

Well, since the last time I told someone about him, someone updated the false Geber article to incorporate a claim that a recent scholar feels sure he can establish that false Geber was a practically unknown monk called "Paul of Taranto". And, rather than writing under the name of the earlier, more famous Geber, as an act of altruism and self-abnegation, this scholar suggests Paul of Taranto was forging new works under Geber's name to help promote earlier work he published under his own name.

So, it seems to me, if the recent scholarship is correct, this would be the most recent instance of what we call sockpuppetry. Here is a passage from Openness, Secrecy, Authorship by Pamela O. Lang

"Newman provides detailed evidence to show that the Latin Summa was probably written by Paul of Taranto, a virtually unknown Franciscan from the order in Assisi. The Summa is clearly related in specific ways to an earlier work, Theorica et practica, in which Paul is named as the author. In the earlier work Paul tries to justify the power of man over nature and provides a detailed defense of applied science. In the later Summa he combines a rigorous defense of alchemy with a pseudonymous attribution to an Arabic alchemical authority, Geber. Thus he defends alchemy against its critics and at the same time enhances the authority of his treatise for a readership of alchemists.

According to the scholar in question, one William R. Newman, this Franciscan monk Paul wrote Theorica et practica under his own name, and then wrote another work entitled Summa Perfectionis under Geber's name.

I still hate sockpuppets. I still think a lack of information about the mundane milestones of a subject's life is a bad reason to argue for deletion.

Cheers! Geo Swan (talk) 18:28, 11 November 2008 (UTC)


While looking at wikipedia's most visited articles I found HITS MUSIC ONLY at no. 26 – Ludicrously high for an article that actually doesn't exist! What is going on here? Google throws up a link to but why is this receiving more hits than the article for the United States presidential election, 2008? Can anyone understand what's happening here? Sillyfolkboy (talk) 20:44, 6 November 2008 (UTC)

That site is not part of Wikipedia so I think you'll have better luck asking them directly. Roger (talk) 21:23, 6 November 2008 (UTC)
Given that the list is unfiltered, I'm inclined to suspect a malfunctioning bot (or a deliberate ranking boost attempt, though that seems pretty silly for a non-existent page). Thirty thousand hits aren't that hard to generate. —Ilmari Karonen (talk) 12:15, 9 November 2008 (UTC)
There are various theories. Bot or softare of some kind sending missconfigured we requests is one idea. Another is wikipedia being used by malwear to check it can acess the web (wikipedia showing up in someone's logs is harly going to raise eyebrows).Geni 03:40, 14 November 2008 (UTC)

Where should one post a request for advice?[edit]

If one has a concern about an article and its discussion page has not responded, where should one post a request for other wikipedians to view/review the page and resolve the concern expressed on the discussion page? (Talk:World Wrestling All-Stars#Quotes in this case, I deleted the quotes but Frank800 restored them. ) -- SGBailey (talk) 09:57, 14 November 2008 (UTC)

I'm tempted to give advice to the other user instead! :) I notice he went to the trouble of re-entering all the quotes manually instead of just reverting your change, and complained on the article's talk page about the time it took to do this. Oh well... The resource you are looking for is Wikipedia:Requests for comment. Take note that before proceeding with this, it is recommended that you attempt to resolve the issue with the other user. You could try posting on his talk page. At this point, since you are open to resolving the issue with consensus, you should not revert the article again, but leave it in its original state until a decision is made. You may find support for your opinion in this essay: Wikipedia:Quotations. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 11:04, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks -- SGBailey (talk) 11:12, 14 November 2008 (UTC)
You can also post on the talk page of associated Wikiprojects to ask for review by other users with knowledge in the topic area. Dcoetzee 04:56, 15 November 2008 (UTC)

Making navboxes and "see also" sections more visible[edit]

I suspect that a large number of our casual readers are unaware of articles related to the ones that they are reading because they tune out at the bottom of the page where all the references begin and never see links in navboxes and "see also" sections. Case and point, in the List of Prime Ministers of Canada, there have been several users who have proposed adding additional information such as time in office and place of birth, even though these subjects have their own dedicated lists that are linked in the navbox at the bottom of the page. If we have users who don't know how to find related articles, then we must have tonnes of readers who don't. Is there any way that we could add something to the tops of articles directing new users to related articles and navboxes? --Arctic Gnome (talkcontribs) 17:38, 14 November 2008 (UTC)

From the top of the article you can put a link or links to the sections for "see also" links and navboxes. Use # in front of the section heading. Enclose in double brackets:
For related info and articles see also: [[#SECTION HEADING|link label]]
This works on individual articles. It is sometimes done also from infoboxes to link to more info farther down in the article. --Timeshifter (talk) 04:28, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
  • See also is usually mentioned in the TOC at the top of the article. Are the see alsos you mention included above the references? =- Mgm|(talk) 10:43, 17 November 2008 (UTC)

Is Wiki's Tagline Accurate? How about a contest.[edit]

"The Free Encyclopedia" always meant 'no charge' to me but now I've been told it means 'copyright free'. So why not change it...and why not have a little contest to think of a new tagline and raise some monies in the process.

Maybe it would be as easy as adding a field to the donate page that says "Wikipedia is considering a new tagline, would you like to suggest one? (Your tagline is part of the donation as well.)"

The Copyright Free Encyclopedia or Free Information - Free World are two that come to mind. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:31, 15 November 2008 (UTC)

uh...say that again? - Rjd0060 (talk) 21:51, 16 November 2008 (UTC)
Why change it? "The Free Encyclopedia" means BOTH "costs you nothing" and "copyright free". It also means it is free for anyone to contribute/edit. It also means WP is not controlled by anyone in particular. I'm pretty sure there are other aspects of WP that are also free - why limit the tagline to only one or two of them. WP is FREE(full stop/period) Roger (talk) 22:02, 16 November 2008 (UTC)
  • Unfortunately, the word got mistranslated in several languages because they don't have a word that has all these meanings, but I'm pretty sure the use was intentional to have all these meanings. - Mgm|(talk) 10:41, 17 November 2008 (UTC)

Community consensus on what "accessability" level content should be written ?[edit]

WP:LEDE states that the introduciton to an article "should be written in a clear, accessible style to invite a reading of the full article." (emph added).

Are there any Wikipedia guidelines etc. where the community has reached consensus on what "accessible" means - in the lede in particular or general accessability level of articles themselves? -- The Red Pen of Doom 18:25, 15 November 2008 (UTC)

WP:ACCESSIBILITY might be a good start =P Dendodge TalkContribs 18:41, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
So "accessable" in WP:LEDE refers only to "format" for people with physical disabilities and not to "level of difficulty of use of language" type of accessability? -- The Red Pen of Doom 18:54, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
Yes - it would be hard to define many terms, especially medical ones, in layman language. We do try our best. Dendodge TalkContribs 19:13, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
The only reference I can find refers to a non-specialist reader, not a reader that uses layman language. I believe the issue here is about literary obfuscation and ambiguity. I think it reasonable not to use language that that is technically beyond what would be needed to pass Cambridge Proficiency or the equivalent US Graduate Aptitude Test. In setting the level so high I have excluded 90% of the English speaking population (including two high profile politicians!). The issue is not simple, some articles will be accessed by a larger percentile of the population so should be accessible while the readers accessing some of the more cutting edge medical articles can be expected to have acquired a high degree of specialist vocabulary and grammaticial structures before arriving at the page so can be more focussed. So has the discussion begun?-ClemRutter (talk) 21:25, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
There is currently a 'heated battle' about this topic at Talk:Joe the Plumber#Sobriquet? and I was wondering if there were some existing guidelines that would help guide the conversation towards a consensus. In general, Wikipedia seems to have survived quite well without the existance formal guidelines on this subject, and I am not sure that more rules are necessarily a good thing.-- The Red Pen of Doom 21:40, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
  • I read somewhere that accessible is supposed to be at a level a US college graduate could understand without actually knowing anything about the subject matter. - Mgm|(talk) 10:39, 17 November 2008 (UTC)
    • I'm not sure that is a community standard, but the actual level is all over the map. Many of the higher level math and physics articles seem to require that you already know the subject matter in order to understand the article, which begs the question: what's the point? But yes, I think that is a good target. Or at least target a sharp high school senior, who would therefore benefit from the information.—RJH (talk) 18:35, 17 November 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject Indiana Jones[edit]

This WikiProject needs more members! There have been five members so far, and there need to be more, so we can make Wikipedia the world's foremost reference on Indy. Thanks. -- MISTER ALCOHOL T C 21:18, 17 November 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia as source[edit]

Checking articles on my watchlist, I observed that someone added a link to the official website for Franklin Township, Franklin County, Kansas; checking out the township website, I noticed that their "What's a Township?" page is sourced from "". I'm assuming that this isn't a violation, since they're obviously trying to say that we're their source; but is there a page where we list Wikipedia articles as sources for things other than news articles? I'm familiar with Wikipedia as a press source, but this doesn't quite fit into that. Since this is an official government (admittedly a small one, but a government anyway) using our data, I'm assuming there's an appropriate place to note that they're sourcing from us, but can someone tell me where to list this? Nyttend (talk) 21:39, 17 November 2008 (UTC)

There is Wikipedia:Wikipedia as a source, which is is the catch-all counterpart to WP as a press source and other more specific pages. olderwiser 22:42, 17 November 2008 (UTC)

RfA Support[edit]

What's the best way to get support in an RfA? -- MISTER ALCOHOL T C 05:33, 15 November 2008 (UTC)

Editing articles productively; participating productively at WP:AFD, WP:DRV, and similar deletion discussions; editing articles productively; discussing new policies and guidelines where appropriate; patrolling new pages... oh, did I mention editing articles productively?
Administrators need to have proven to the community that they can be trusted with the extra tools. Editing productively and helping out with other administrative tasks available to any editor are probably the best ways. Oh, and never forget that adminship is not a prize - it's a volunteer task, just like everything else. Tony Fox (arf!) 05:59, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the information. -- MISTER ALCOHOL T C 05:41, 16 November 2008 (UTC)
Changing your User pages so that they're legible would be a good start. Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 22:18, 16 November 2008 (UTC)
Take a look at some others' pages, e.g. User:Rogerchocodiles. They have markup like mine. -- MISTER ALCOHOL T C 05:23, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

Moving search box to the top of the sidebar[edit]

Additional input is sought. Please see this discussion:

IP user blaiming kowiki's admins[edit]

One of IP user in kowiki is blaiming (kowiki) admins for unfair speedy-deletions(ko:WP:Viliage pump#chickens' playground Wikipedia). Why I report this small happening here is, this user compared kowiki admins with enwiki admins, saying The reason why English Wikipedia succeeded is high-quality admins. Admins bulit up Wikipedia... Do you agree? --Dus2000 (talk) 10:48, 18 November 2008 (UTC)

No. The reason why English Wikipedia succeeded is high quality contributors. High quality contributors built up Wikipedia. In fact there weren't any admins for the first year or so when most of the ground work was done. -- The admin, Derek Ross | Talk 16:24, 18 November 2008 (UTC)

How can I tell if we copied another site, or vice versa?[edit]

See Encomienda and Any way to tell which came first? Is in violation of the GFDL, or is our version a copyvio? Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 03:24, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

The site appears to be a mirror of Wikipedia. In this case, the fact that the other site even has the table of contents, see also section, references formatted the exact same way as Wikipedia, and at one point, a "citation needed" tag is a pretty dead giveaway that its a mirror. In this case it appears to be a live mirror. The encoding seems to be broken as well as they specify a windows-1256 character set, while Wikipedia uses UTF-8. No link back to Wikipedia, the page history, or the text of the GFDL, so it appears to be a GFDL violation as well. Mr.Z-man 03:44, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I've sent them a message about violating GFDL. Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 03:49, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
Ha. They're already listed at Wikipedia:Mirrors_and_forks/ Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 03:52, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

List of deleted contributions[edit]

On the "my contributions" page, there is a link called "edit and action count". On the corresponding page, it states that there is a certain number of edits which I have made on Wikipedia which have been deleted. These edits, however, do not show up on the "my contributions" page. Is there any way that I can view a list of the edits I have made which have been deleted? Neelix (talk) 16:43, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

I may be wrong on this and would be happy to be corrected, but I believe the deleted contributions list is only visible to administrators. There may be a tool someplace, but I'm not entirely sure. Tony Fox (arf!) 16:56, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
Some admins will, on request, provide an editor with a list of his deleted contributions. DuncanHill (talk) 16:57, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
There's nothing desperately exciting in your deleted contributions. Some redirects which were deemed to fall into the WP:CSD#R3 category. Page moves you did, which were later reversed. Things you nominated for deletion. To be honest, I don't remember seeing "redirect from species to non-monotonic genus or family or list or self-referential disambiguation page" on the list of speedy deletion criteria, but there you go. Angus McLellan (Talk) 23:05, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
Neelix, if you want to see a list of your deleted contributions, send me an email and I will send you back the list. It will just be a list of the contributions, however, not the actual contributions. Sarah 00:21, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

uploading an audio file?[edit]

Need someone's help with uploading a 7-minute audio file (35 MB) to a Wikipedia article. Can you please outline the steps? THANKS! —Preceding unsigned comment added by Rjmcormier (talkcontribs) 18:07, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

File size limit is 20 MB.Geni 00:49, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Research Study on Wikipedia Article Quality[edit]

Dear All,

My name is Avanidhar Chandrasekaran (

I work with GroupLens Research at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. As part of my research, I am involved in analyzing the usefulness and Necessity of author reputation in Wikipedia.

In lieu of this, I have simulated an Interface to color words in an article based on their Age.

Being experienced contributors to Wikipedia, I invite you to participate in this study, which involves the following.

1. Please visit the following Instances of wikipedia and evaluate the interface components which have been incorporated into each of them. Each of these use their own algorithm to color text.

a) The Wikitrust project

b) The Wiki-reputation project at Grouplens research

2) Once you have evaluated the two interfaces, kindly complete this survey on Wikipedia quality

We hope to get your valuable feedback on these interfaces and how Wikipedia article quality can be improved.

Thanks for your time

Avanidhar Chandrasekaran,

GroupLens Research, University of Minnesota

Avanidhar (talk) 21:55, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

A new Wikipedia mirror?[edit]

Last weekend my wife & bought new cell phones -- Blackberry Curves -- & tonight as I was scrolling thru its list of applications I could buy, I encountered one by the name of Wikimobile, available for the price of $19.99. The description states

Carry Wikipedia wherever you go, and you'll never be stumped again! Access all 2 million Wikipedia articles, including pictures and quick facts!

Now while I've been a user & contributor to Wikipedia for over 6 years now, I had never heard of Wikimobile. I did a quick search, & it appears no one else on Wikipedia has either: no articles, no references to it in Talk or other meta-space pages. (The name "Wikimobile" is the name of a project that someone proposed over on about 2 years ago, but that project doesn't appear to have any connection to this application.)

So is WMF getting any money from this? Is this application infringing on the Wikipedia/Wikimedia brand? Why doesn't Wikipedia have an article on this thing?

FWIW, I can attest that the browser on the Blackberry Curve can actually import & display pages from Wikipedia in a usable manner, so I don't know why anyone would want to buy this application. -- llywrch (talk) 06:24, 15 November 2008 (UTC)

It can't be too new. Google has many entries for it, and the 2nd is dated January and talks about a new version, Wikimobile 3.0, upgraded from a previous 2.0. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 07:17, 15 November 2008 (UTC)
Try on your cellphone - it works on my Nokia N70 just fine. No additional software needed. Roger (talk) 22:22, 16 November 2008 (UTC)
Here's a recent review of Wikimobile for Android; the selling points seem to be a bit of added functionality, compared to the standard browser, and that it "uses just a fraction of the network data vs. the Android browser". Of course, it's free (at the moment) for the Android phone, versus $19.99 for the Blackberry.
As far as WMF getting money from this, I'm sure the answer is no; all the Wikimedia Foundation asks is that the source of content from a WMF website be acknowledged as such. And as far as infringement on the brand, "wiki" isn't something that WMF has copyrighted or branded, and anyone is allowed to mention Wikipedia as part of their marketing copy. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 20:38, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Requesting IPA pronouncation for Jostein Gaarder[edit]

Could someone add IPA pronunciation of Jostein Gaarder in his article, Jostein Gaarder? hujiTALK 18:15, 15 November 2008 (UTC)

No progress here? Did I ask in the wrong place? hujiTALK 20:51, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
Try WP:RD/L. Algebraist 20:53, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Navboxes and stub tags[edit]

Do navboxes go below stub tags? Or is it the other way around?--chaser - t 23:47, 18 November 2008 (UTC)

Stubs go below navboxes: see WP:GTL#Navigational footers, categories, interlanguage links etc.. (And in the future, I suggest asking this type of question at the help desk; you'll tend to get a much quicker answer there.) -- John Broughton (♫♫) 16:36, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Knowledge sharing on Wikipedia[edit]

Dear friends, We are conducting a study on the motivation of the knowledge sharing on Wikipedia. Your experience of the read from and write to Wikipedia is very important to the design and management of this knowledge platform. The survey will take about three minutes. We deeply appreciate your help on answering the following questions.

After the survey is done, we will randomly select twenty persons and present them with USB 2GB Flash Drives. Besides, with each valid questionnaire, we will donate US $1 dollar to the Wikimedia Foundation. The result of this survey is analyzed in an anonymous way and is only regarded as the academic use. Please feel free to fill out the questionnaire. Thanks again for your time and valuable input.

May happiness and health be with you everyday!

On-line Questionnaire: [3] Shari S. C. Shang

Eldon Y. Li Professor, Department of Management Information Systems, National Chengchi University

Tel.: +886-2-82374038; Fax: +886-2-29393754 ; E-mail: —Preceding unsigned comment added by 吳雅玲 (talkcontribs) 13:08, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

I think we need a bit more proof of identity than this message gives. I've had business dealings with a couple of Chinese academics, and they used email addresses provided by their university, not Yahoo. The questionnaire asks for the user's email address. I understand that academics might be concerned that giving their university email addresses might expose them to a flood of spam. Can anyone think of way round the deadlock?--Philcha (talk) 14:32, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
No comment on this survey itself, but regarding your concerns about the email address, this person has an academic email address (at on the website they linked to above. Sarah 15:48, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
We do have a related essay on Wikipedia:Ethically researching Wikipedia. --—— Gadget850 (Ed) talk - 14:23, 20 November 2008 (UTC)


I note that this article was subject to VfDs in 2004 and 2005 (1 and 2).

I've written a stub that I humbly suggest passes WP:V and have overwritten the redirect.

Happy for anyone querying the verifiability of the new article to list it at AfD.

I thought that DRV was inappropriate, as the article was a redirect, not deleted and furthermore, I didn't want to recreate any of the old deleted versions - all the verified information in the article is from the last few days. --Dweller (talk) 14:58, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Looks good, nice job. MBisanz talk 14:59, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Question about the number of Wikipedia users[edit]

I have not been able to find the exact number of registered Wikipedia users/editors at this time. Thank you for your help. Who wields me, wields the world! (talk) 10:29, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Special:Statistics has the answer, or you can use a magic word: there are 21,204,745 registered users on the English Wikipedia. Algebraist 12:56, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Thank you. Who wields me, wields the world! (talk) 05:21, 22 November 2008 (UTC)

Martinique missing flag[edit]

I noticed, that the flag is missing in the Featurebox in article Martinique. Prunk (talk) 10:13, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

Creative Commons License[edit]

Concerns over the use of text cut and pasted into Wikipedia articles using the Creative Commons License. Please see Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Military history#Creative Commons License, and add any comments there. --PBS (talk) 12:42, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

Two names for one subject[edit]

I wrote an article, Holy Cross Church (New York City). This church is also called Church of the Holy Cross. If someone enters that second title in "search," how can I get it to go to the article? Thank you.Hammerdrill (talk) 14:17, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

A redirect should do it. See WP:R.—RJH (talk) 16:45, 21 November 2008 (UTC)
Use the full officially correct name of the church for the article title and use redirects for other/unofficial names. Roger (talk) 17:28, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

The Daily Princetonian wants to cite us as a secondary[edit]

Good job, community! What have we been doing right? GetLinkPrimitiveParams (talk) 14:53, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

By definition the entries on Wikipedia improve in accuracy and completeness--its in the DNA of the system. The old claim that the platform is not a credible source of information is steadily being eroded. Who wields me, wields the world! (talk) 05:30, 22 November 2008 (UTC)

Links from User Page[edit]

Hello everyone, I was just wondering if there was a way to see a list of the all the pages that link to my user page? Basically, I know that I have created some sub-domains on my user page (Adasta/[name of page]) in the past, but have no idea what they are called. How can I find out where these pages "are"?

Thanks. --Adasta Flag of England.svg Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 16:00, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

I usually use the "What links here" feature in the toolbox at left (at least for the default skin).—RJH (talk) 16:44, 21 November 2008 (UTC)
To find the subpages for any page, use the link "Special pages" in the Wikipedia toolbox at the left of the page, then go to All pages with prefix from the list of pages given. Select your user name, and the namespace "User" to get the list of pages under User:Adasta. You might also want to select the "User talk" namespace to see talk pages in your user space.-gadfium 18:40, 21 November 2008 (UTC)
That's brilliant, thanks very much.--Adasta Flag of England.svg Flag of the United Kingdom.svg 23:52, 21 November 2008 (UTC)

Video Interviews[edit]


I’m Tabitha the Marketing Director of t5m, I'm writing to propose that the wikipedia community discuss whether they feel like the content we at t5m produce is relevant to wikipedia.

t5m is an online tv network who’s mission is to produce content which inspires and entertains. Unlike most video networks which either aggregate existing content or rely on user generate content. t5m creates, produces and syndicates original exclusive interviews with celebrities.

t5m prides itself on have a great relationship with the talent we interview, which ensure that we create candid, entertaining and by the very nature of the medium reliably informative interviews. The celebrities are all happy with the content and encourage us to make sure their fans see it as they firmly believe that we are no journalist or advertorial but just being a mouth piece for them.

I feel that many of the interviews we have are relevant to the wikipedia pages on the particular talent. I understand that it is unethical for me to link to t5m on all the pages where our content is relevant so i wanted to highlight our site to the wikipedia community and see whether people see our site as a valuable place to have an external link to.

I have been reading about how wikipedia is moving more into the video arena and i thought that some of our interviews might be a good place to start. So this is also something i would be really happy to discuss.

to check out the content visit [5] Richard Dawkins interview [6] or Ray Winstone interview[7] as these interviews are good places to start looking.

below is a list of all out personality interview content...

  • Alice Temperley
  • Barbara Taylor Bradford
  • Christian Slater
  • James Blunt
  • Jamie Lee Curtis
  • Jason Isaacs
  • Kate Bosworth
  • Kelly Slater
  • Natalie Imbruglia
  • Nick Morrison
  • Nile Rodgers
  • Petra Nemcova
  • Ranulph Fiennes
  • Ray Winstone
  • Richard Dawkins
  • Roger Sanchez
  • Steve Redgrave
  • Teddy Thompson
  • The Hoosiers
  • Zac Goldsmith
  • Rosario Dawson

thank you very much for your time


Well, unless you produce free-of-charge GFDL-liscensed videos, which I doubt, no we can't use your services.--Patton123 21:52, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
There seem to be two different questions here: (a) Adding external links, from Wikipedia articles, to t5m interviews; (b) Wikipedia's hosting of files of t5m interviews. Patton123 has basically answered the second of these - the Wikimedia Foundation doesn't want to use anything other than free software for its websites, and all content (except some fair use images) must be have a GFDL or similar license.
So, regarding (a), external links - you can read our guideline here, and our guideline on conflict of interest here. My personal sense is that (i) where there are already lots of external links in an article, adding yet another isn't that valuable, but that (ii) for lesser-known (or lesser-documented) personalities, no one would have any objections if you posted a suggestion on the talk/discussion page of the article in question, such as Talk:Steve Redgrave. Then, if another editor thought that the link was useful, he/she could post it.
  • And we could always use them as a reference instead of just an external link. - Mgm|(talk) 11:22, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Problem with categories[edit]

Often, there will be a template, which, when added to an article, automatically puts that article in a certain category. I have noticed that often, however, the lists for that category are cluttered up with people who post on talk pages "I suggest we use this template:" and then the template, or, on userpages, "I really like this template! :". This creates an enormous hassle for people trying to find articles requiring improvement, and is very inefficient. I suggest you do something about this. Hello, My Name Is SithMAN8 (talk) 17:14, 22 November 2008 (UTC)

I believe that is called herding cats. =) —RJH (talk) 17:00, 23 November 2008 (UTC)
Any template that adds a category should have a way to suppress the category. See User:Willscrlt/commons/Category suppression in templates (en) for one method. --—— Gadget850 (Ed) talk - 22:18, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Thanks. Hello, My Name Is SithMAN8 (talk) 23:21, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Kosovo in lists of countries[edit]

Some articles contain lists of countries. Should Kosovo be included in such lists? For example, Glock pistol#Users has a list of the nations whose army or police force use the Glock pistol. The list includes only nations, or former nations. The issue is that there is a lack of agreement about whether or not Kosovo is a nation. As explained in International reaction to the 2008 declaration of independence by Kosovo, "52 out of 192 sovereign United Nations member states have formally recognised the Republic of Kosovo as an independent state. Notably, a majority of European Union member states have formally recognised Kosovo (22 out of 27)..." Among English speaking countries, Kosovo has been recognized by the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Australia. Quite a few other countries (e.g. New Zealand) are undeclared and "neither recognise nor not recognise" Kosovo. At the same time, some countries have declared that they do not accept Kosovo as a sovereign state. Also, the same article says, "According to the Secretary-General, the "United Nations has maintained a position of strict neutrality on the question of Kosovo's status"." So, should Kosovo be included in lists of countries in Wikipedia articles, or not? Mudwater (Talk) 20:11, 22 November 2008 (UTC)

Kosovo is shown on List_of_countries#K in bold-italics as a state lacking general international recognition.—RJH (talk) 22:05, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Font Size[edit]

I accidentally increased the size of the print, and now I'm having trouble getting it back to normal. What do I do? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Saxon2k8 (talkcontribs) 23:35, 22 November 2008 (UTC)

Depends on your browser. In FF, it's view/zoom/reset. In IE, view/text size/medium. Algebraist 23:45, 22 November 2008 (UTC)


Please discuss my suggestion about making {{wikinews}} a short-living link (the keyword here is "news") in Template_talk:Wikinews#Outdated_news. `'Míkka>t 17:11, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Touch the Clouds[edit]

Please people, tell me what you think of this article! I did my best to improve it and with me some others did the same! After days of hard work, I would love to hear some opinions from expierenced wikipedians! I have nominated it for Good Article in the morning and I hope it will pass. If you people think it would pass in its current state, then please inform me of that so I can have a good nights sleep. If not, then inform me of what should be done in order for the article to pass GA-nominations. I eagerly await your answers! Thanks in advance, J.B. (talk) 14:34, 24 November 2008 (UTC)

The article has some issues with tone, I think.—RJH (talk) 20:24, 24 November 2008 (UTC)
It is a fairly good start, but it has quite a long way to go before it reaches "Good Article" status. Just a quick read gives me the impression that it may make it to B-class as it is now. Roger (talk) 21:00, 24 November 2008 (UTC)

As you say, Roger, it makes B-class. The thing is: I want it to make GA class. {{subst:User:Jouke Bersma/sig}} 11:04, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

I highly recommend taking it through Wikipedia:Peer review.—RJH (talk) 22:02, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

As of now, it already is a GA nominee. Could I still bring it up for peer review as it is? Jouke Bersma Contributions 08:53, 27 November 2008 (UTC)

The result of the review/nomination will give us pointers about possible improvements. Roger (talk) 09:21, 27 November 2008 (UTC)

Who was unable to see the end of the Heidi Game by TV?[edit]

Hello: Last 29th of July of 2008 it was added to Heidi Game that fans outside of the Pacific Time Zone were unable to see the end of the match. I've been searching in the web but haven't found anything that talks about it. I'm not from the USA and don't know what the policy was those years for what time to broadcast live (e.g. this football match) and recorded (e.g. this film about Heidi) programs in the different regions of the country with different times. Were all the TV viewers of the whole USA unable to see the end of the match or only those ones outside the PTZ? The difference is very big and should be clarified. Thanks, --Edupedro (talk) 22:37, 26 November 2008 (UTC)

Those of us in the Bay Area couldn't see the game at all, because the NFL's then-existing rules prohibited showing of home games in the local team's area, even if the games sold out. That has since been changed. We only got to listen to the game on the radio, so we didn't know anything about the controversy till the next day. Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 00:51, 27 November 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the explanation. I've updated the article with "no fan following the match on TV was able to see Oakland's comeback live". I think that it could be interesting to add that people of Bay Area couldn't see the game at all live by TV because of NFL's then-existing rules you mention. OK? Regards, --Edupedro (talk) 20:21, 27 November 2008 (UTC)

What's the policy/consensus on lists of non-notable people?[edit]

I pruned all of the unlinked names out of Chail Military School and got reverted. I tried to explain to the other editor that if he creates articles on the people which meet the requirements of WP:BIO (and based on the supposed qualifications of the unlinked names, they would be notable), then there's no problem, but if you just list a bunch of people and claim notability without creating articles on them, then it's a violation of WP:BIO and is making an end run around notability rules. Am I wrong? Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 20:54, 27 November 2008 (UTC)

Yes, you're wrong. It's long established that lists aren't just made up of blue links. They can contain red links, or relevant people for whom no article is currently intended. This a recognised advantage of lists over categories.
Claiming that state ministers and army lieutenant-generals are not sufficiently notable to be included on a list of alumni is out of order. Compare, say, the list of rabbis who are alumni of Gateshead Yeshiva - they may not have articles here, but they are sufficiently notable in the world to which the article relates that it is entirely appropriate to include them. Jheald (talk) 23:12, 27 November 2008 (UTC)
I think it depends on the article. Editors on some articles are free to form a local consensus as to the inclusion criteria for a list. In some cases they may decide that no citation is needed (citations are only required when information is reasonably challenged or likely to be), that a single citation to the whole list is fine, or that even minor mentions in marginally reliable publications are sufficient... e.g. a discography of a minor but notable performer. On other items, to control list quality and size, they may require that each list item have a strong citation, be demonstrably notable, and/or we wikilinked (which establishes some kind of a presumption that the subject of the link is notable, on the theory that if it is not the article would not exist). An example of that is the List of Internet phenomena article, which keeps whatever quality it has only through constant patrolling of the inclusion criteria. Note that not everything notable has an article. That is particularly true of biographies, where only a tiny fraction of slightly notable living and dead people have articles written about them. Note that all of this is my opinion, not a formal policy/guideline. There may be one but I am not trying to summarize policy... Wikidemon (talk) 01:38, 28 November 2008 (UTC)
When there are no articles on the people in a list, which can be used to verify not only notability but actual existence, then, for all intents and purposes, a list of unlinked people violates WP:V. Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 04:19, 28 November 2008 (UTC)
Not really. WP:V requires that information be verifiable, not verified. Facts only need citations if reasonably challenged, or likely to be challenged. Nevertheless, I do think it is a good idea to include at least a citation or wikilink on most lists of people. It's hard to say that categorically without looking at the circumstance. In the case of alumni of a school I would say that's information subject to challenge because that kind of information is subject to mistakes and false claims. Wikidemon (talk) 06:22, 28 November 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Requests for expansion useless?[edit]


I'm not really sure where to put this, but… Looking at the talk page for WP:RFE, I've noticed a lot of discussions regarding the usefulness of the Requests for Expansion, and I get the feeling that it's totally useless. I've submitted several articles here over time, and of them, not one has been expanded. Furthermore, it's backlogged all the way to September 2007! One comment on the talk page reads "If this page results in expansions, it must be very infrequent. I've just reviewed the last four weeks of edits. The only listings that were deleted were for articles that themselves had been deleted, not expanded. Some of the earlier debate on this talk page questioned whether a request for expansion (or an expansion tag) was really productive. Seems not." I looked at the first ten articles from the September 2007 listings and only one out of the whole bunch has been expanded. This whole project seems very unproductive to me, and I think that it should be marked as inactive/historical. As for its presence on the {{expand}} template, that mention can simply be removed, as I at least find {{Expand}} to be a useful flag. Ten Pound Hammer and his otters • (Broken clamshellsOtter chirpsHELP) 16:50, 20 November 2008 (UTC)

Seems inactive. How about it's just replaced with instructions for using stub and expand tags and links to categories for those looking for a job to do. DOUBLEBLUE (talk) 17:15, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
We already have over 9000 cleanup projects. I say wipe out the list and tag as historical. Ten Pound Hammer and his otters • (Broken clamshellsOtter chirpsHELP) 17:26, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
I'm the one who reviewed four weeks of edits as quoted in the first comment. Although I've been on Wikipedia a short time, it's clear that articles are tagged with some sort of clean-up or maintenance template much more frequently than articles are "cleaned up" and the tags removed. While some clean-up activities seem to attract attention (correcting typos, stub sorting, etc.), requests for expansion, based on a tag, simply do not. Category:All articles to be expanded now has over 33,000 listings. I concur with the comments above. Make the expansion page inactive and do whatever needs to be done to stop the use of the expansion templates (I think there's five or six of them). JimVC3 (talk) 19:07, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
I support the removal of this category and its related templates; yes, I think it's useless, or worse - it gives people a sense of accomplishment when nothing is being accomplished by tagging.
I do suggest that the discussion be moved to the Village pump page for proposals. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 20:42, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
I think there's a fundamental reason why expansion tags are ineffective - you have to be a subject matter expert to expand an article. Unless there's some way to narrow down the category by subject area, people aren't going to find articles they can expand. Dcoetzee 21:56, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
Another reason they're ineffective is that they are too vague. You might as well put down a tag saying "this article could be better than it is." I delete those tags automatically, as visual blight, when I stumble across them; nobody has ever complained. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 22:18, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
I have boldly nominated RFE at miscellany for deletion. You can voice your opinion there too. Ten Pound Hammer and his otters • (Broken clamshellsOtter chirpsHELP) 22:25, 20 November 2008 (UTC)
I think the tag is more to encourage reader of the article to expand it rather than attracting editors from outside. If there are no readers then expanding is no hurry. --Apoc2400 (talk) 16:32, 27 November 2008 (UTC)

(undent) The original discussion was about the page Wikipedia:Requests for expansion, not about the {{expand}} template and its related category. The WP:RFE page is now marked historical/inactive. The template and its category are still very much alive; anyone wanting to delete them should start another discussion, I suggest. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 15:30, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

Changing a category[edit]

Hi. So all I want to do is find out how to change the categorization of an article. I believe one is wrong (incorrectly categorized). I don't know how to do it. I don't care if someone else does it for me. But I've spent an hour going through the website on where to get this answer...and I'm getting frustrated. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Inkarent (talkcontribs) 14:24, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

See Help:Category. You'll have to tell us the article and categories in question if you want more specific information. Algebraist 14:25, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

Algebraist, Washington Group International does not belong in the category "Defunct engineering companies of the United States". Yes it has been merged with URS Corp. but that does not make it defunct. Technically, it is still doing business as a legal entity. (It still has open contracts as Washington Group International).Inkarent (talk) 14:28, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

As the category is still there - you can remove it by just removing the line [[Category:Defunct engineering companies of the United States]] - AdamBMorgan (talk) 13:28, 25 November 2008 (UTC)
Perhaps this is too basic, but just in case: You need to click the "edit this page" tab, then go to the bottom of the edit window, find the text mentioned by AdamBMorgan, and delete it. Then type in a brief explanation of what you are doing in the "Edit summary" box (that's directly below the edit window) and click the "Save page" button. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 15:07, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

Tabbed navbox[edit]

Does anybody know if there is a way to do a tabbed navbox? There are no examples under the {{navbox}} documentation, so I have no idea if anybody has found a way to implement them. Thanks.—RJH (talk) 16:58, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

Template:Navigation tabs and Template:PageTabs. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 15:03, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

just needed a place to vent...[edit]

I just made a typo and wound up at . Egads! Ugly and awful! Kingturtle (talk) 02:52, 24 November 2008 (UTC)

Yup, totally not under the control of the Wikimedia Foundation. It's the nature of the web that parasite sites like this exist, taking advantage of typos to try to make some money off click-throughs. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 14:59, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

Drug spotlight[edit]

Not sure if it's already been/being discussed, but this article points out that

Consumers who rely on the user-edited Web resource Wikipedia for information on medications are putting themselves at risk of potentially harmful drug interactions and adverse effects new research shows. Dr. Kevin A. Clauson of Nova Southeastern University in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. and his colleagues found few factual errors in their evaluation of Wikipedia entries on 80 drugs. But these entries were often missing important information, for example the fact that the anti-inflammatory drug Arthrotec (diclofenac and misoprostol) can cause pregnant women to miscarry, or that St. John's wort can interfere with the action of the HIV drug Prezista (darunavir).

What can/should be done to correct these deficiencies? Also note the legal and ethical issues surrounding improper, incorrect, unverified, or unclear information. //Blaxthos ( t / c ) 18:22, 25 November 2008 (UTC)

A discussion about this is already underway at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Pharmacology#Clauson study. Paul Erik (talk)(contribs) 18:31, 25 November 2008 (UTC)
Anyone who uses information in a WP article in the place of advice from a qualified professional is a potential candidate for a Darwin Award. Should articles relating to medicine all contain a warning? What then of law, engineering, chemistry, etc? Has common sense been abolished? Roger (talk) 09:27, 27 November 2008 (UTC)
Every page at Wikipedia has a link, at the bottom to the page Wikipedia:General disclaimer. That page includes the following: Not professional advice: If you need specific advice (for example, medical, legal, financial, or risk management) please seek a professional who is licensed or knowledgeable in that area.
That isn't to say that we don't want Wikipedia articles to be as complete as possible - we do, though keeping WP:NOT in mind - Wikipedia isn't a place to get advice or guidance. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 14:56, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

De-orphan bot[edit]

Does orphan bot remove the orphan tags from articles that get de-orphaned (i.e. articles that were formerly not linked to but that now have another article linking to them?). The reason I asked is that this edit[4] came on my radar screen, someone manually removing the tag.

Second "I should really figure out how to look this up but I don't know where to look" question, how could I go about getting a bot to notice new (or go through existing) articles scoring them for possible inclusion in the Bay Area, California project? I could look for articles with mentions or links to the various cities, institutions, people, etc. I've seen such lists around the encyclopedia so I assume there is a bot that will make them based on a configuration file. If you know, could you point me in the right direction?

Hope this is the right place to ask - if not I can ask the question on a bot page or the help desk. Thanks, Wikidemon (talk) 01:43, 28 November 2008 (UTC)

The tag was not added by a user called Orphan Bot, but by User:Terraxos. You could ask him about it on his talk page, but bots and other processes that look for articles to tag usually don't also look for articles to untag. There are other clean-up bots that might do it, but a tag is basically a request for someone (human) to address a problem, and the person who fixes it should remove the tag. There is a page called Wikipedia:Bot requests but I don't think a bot can do what you are asking re. Bay Area. A search for relevant articles is a manual task. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 10:51, 29 November 2008 (UTC)
I think he's just asking for a bot to remove the {{orphan}} tag from articles that have incoming links from other articles. That would be rather easy to do with a bot. Mr.Z-man 22:49, 30 November 2008 (UTC)

Messed up archives[edit]

After some false starts, I successfully created Talk:Analytic Hierarchy Process/Archive 3.

The false starts created two redirect pages that I think should be deleted: Talk:Analytic Hierarchy Process/Archive 4 - 01/08 through 06/08 and Talk:Analytic Hierarchy Process/Archive 3 - 01/08 through 06/08.

If I am right, could somebody please delete them? Skyrocket654 (talk) 15:40, 29 November 2008 (UTC)

You should post a request for deletion at Wikipedia:Redirects for discussion. Unfortunately the page forces you to do a lot of reading first, but that is the place to do it. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 21:59, 30 November 2008 (UTC)


Does anyone know if there's any way to have a list of articles by number of pictures or something? (Or if there is one already that I couldn't find)Petero9 (talk) 23:23, 1 December 2008 (UTC)[edit]

What is this site? I just found a link to an article ( that has now been deleted. I recently asked an administrator for a copy of this article (which I received), however, if I had known about it being extant on this site, I could perhaps somehow had gone and retrieved it for myself? __meco (talk) 15:08, 1 December 2008 (UTC) contains a dumps of the all the different wikipedia as of June 08. It just one revision per page of the date of the dump and seems to have all namespaces. --Salix (talk): 17:04, 1 December 2008 (UTC)

School project on social movements[edit]

I've noticed a number of new articles and new users all editing in an interesting pattern. I started to suspect sock puppetry, until I read a note that an article was for a class. It seems like a professor or instructor has assigned the class the task of creating (or updating and expanding) articles on social movements. And from some IP checks on these articles, I believe these users are from North Carolina, and probably attend UNC. That said, because this is forced work, and because these are new users, there has been a number of problems resulting from this assignment. I've seen articles that qualified for speedy deletion, I've seen copyvios, and I've seen articles that need editing, formatting, clean up, and removal of trivia and non-encyclopedic content. So I'm asking if users could watchlist some of these, and go through and check for copyvio, clean up, etc. I have a list offline of the users that I suspect are in the class, but I'm not sure it is necessary to publish it here. But I will list the articles in question:

Thanks to anyone who can help weed through this and clean up and salvage. Should we perhaps try to contact all the users at once and give them tips? Should we try to contact the instructor or do anything more? Any other ideas? Thanks again!-Andrew c [talk] 02:36, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

I would contact a couple of these new editors, confirm that it is indeed a school project and ask them to put you in touch with their professor/instructor, preferably on his/her talk page if they have one so we can explain how things work round here. Pointing them and their instructor to WP:SUP would be a good idea too. – ukexpat (talk) 15:24, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

Square KM vs Hectare[edit]

I have noticed that on articles where an area needs to be expressed, eg the size of a national park, the sizes of these areas are expressed as km2 as opposed to hectares, as a person that works in agriculture when ever i talk about area size it is always expressed as hectares, i have noticed also that when the imperial equivalent is put in brackets it is always written as acres. I am not trying to change change policy or anything I am just curious why Km2 is used as opposed to Ha. Cheers Beaver (talk) 10:42, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

I can see some sense in it. For most people, square kilometre is a much more immediate and intuitive unit, because it relates so straightforwardly to the kilometre.
The balancing advantage for the hectare is when one wants to write smaller areas avoiding decimals - so when writing about fields of 12, 15, 30 hectares; and for quantities which are going to be applied in such contexts -- eg crop yields, or fertiliser loadings of so many tonnes per hectare.
But for areas over a few hundred hectares, when square kilometres with 1 decimal place gives sufficient accuracy, then I would lean towards square kilometres. So probably 32.5 km2, rather than 3250 ha. Jheald (talk) 11:09, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

Seeking consensus on an autobiographical article[edit]

My name, Richard Leach, has come up at two Wikipedia pages: Terrance Lindall and Amanda Husberg. I have prepared a very short and I think neutral page about myself, and am seeking consensus before creating it, as I know autobiographical pages are strongly discouraged. Here's the sandbox page: Tinkwig (talk) 12:09, 2 December 2008 (UTC)

I have edited it slightly to comply with WP:MOS and to me it looks OK to move to the mainspace. When it has been moved (and let me know if you need help with that) you should probably leave a note on the article talk page explaining that you are the subject of the article, that you wrote it and have had it reviewed prior to moving. – ukexpat (talk) 15:19, 2 December 2008 (UTC)


Template:Infobox FBI Ten Most Wanted 1990s looks a bit too stylised, I think. It's a nice idea, but looks very odd when placed in an article. If someone agrees with me, could they give it a once-over and standardise it? I've tried to, but my knowledge of template code isn't good enough! Thanks, Chase me ladies, I'm the Cavalry (talk) 16:37, 3 December 2008 (UTC)

Its page says it's "in approximation of their appearance on the original 1990s wanted posters", so I wouldn't mess with it, without knowing more about how the posters look. You might ask the person who created the template for help, or bring any conerns to that user. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 20:03, 3 December 2008 (UTC)
There is also {{Infobox FBI Ten Most Wanted}}, which is not as garish. --—— Gadget850 (Ed) talk - 12:12, 4 December 2008 (UTC)


Since Wiktionary is a sister project to Wikipedia would a link to it be considered an internal link or is it a separate entity? Copana2002 (talk) 17:23, 3 December 2008 (UTC)


Using Wikipedia, can one post a biography about another person? Even if the person is not a 'world famous celebrity'? For example: I would like to write about a local author who writes about his stuggles with Insomnia. Mick Thandi tries to help people find <a href="">Insomnia Cures</a>. He writes on his research about <a href="">Insomnia</a>.

From what you have said here, it is not likely to ba accepted. See WP:BIO for guidelines. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 20:11, 3 December 2008 (UTC)
Yes, the main thing to think about is WP:BIO. Read the "Basic criteria" section for a brief overview of notability. A new article about a person should show that they are notable by citing reliable sources. You can go ahead and create the article, but if enough editors think that the subject is not notable, it will probably end up being deleted. Mudwater (Talk) 00:22, 4 December 2008 (UTC)
Just a further point: "notability" is not the same as "celebrity". There are many articles on Wikipedia about people who are notable but are not "celebrities" as that term is commonly used. As others have said, WP:BIO is the key guideline here. – ukexpat (talk) 15:55, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

Picture of Prophet Mohammed[edit]

Dear Sir/Madam

Could you please take off the picture posted on your website representing prophet Mohammed. Islam prohibts its display and Muslim all over world will be highly obilged and thankfull if you remove it as soon as possible. So that our faith in wiki pedia reamins fine

Thanks Dr Shah Hobart Australia —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:05, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

Please go to Talk:Muhammad and click on [show] to read the frequently asked questions (FAQ). This will explain the position on images of Muhammad and what you can do to block them from your account. --—— Gadget850 (Ed) talk - 12:09, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

Getting Articles onto Google Earth and other Mapping Sites[edit]


Would you be able to answer my question.

I would like to know if articles i have made will get on to Google Earth, with my current coordinate layout.

Please look at these two pages to see:

Thank You Chris0693 (talk) 17:51, 4 December 2008 (UTC)

Bot Approvals Group candidacy[edit]

I have been nominated for BAG, so per instructions I am posting this to invite comments at Wikipedia:Bot Approvals Group/nominations/Anomie. Thanks. Anomie 03:13, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

The Simpsons Address[edit]

What page can I find the address of The Simpsons?.--intraining Jack In 09:11, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

Adding I know they live on evergreen terrace but I don't know what number.--intraining Jack In 10:05, 6 December 2008 (UTC)
742 Evergreen Terrace. Algebraist 15:08, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

AOL Hometown[edit]

Sorry to raise a subject that has probably been discussed a million times, but for some reason I cannot find it in all this Village Pump thing. As you know, the hosting site AOL Hometown has been shut down. Is there any way to find back material that was hosted there, if it is NOT in the wayback machine ? SyG (talk) 09:48, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

Failed to parse[edit]

Failed to parse: The article Resistor shows "Failed to parse (Cannot write to or create math output directory): V = I R" with red color letters. It seems relates to Cartesian coordinate system#Representing a vector in the standard basis. What is wrong in article itself or my browser setting? does show correctly.--Namazu-tron (talk) 01:57, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

Personal information of minors[edit]

If someone has created an account with what appears to be their real name and has identified themselves as a minor and has also given other personal information about themselves on their user page (where they live) - do we just notify them that that is not necessarily a safe thing to do or can administrators go in and remove that data? Trout Ice Cream (talk) 20:49, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

You should delete the information, inform the user and request oversight. – ukexpat (talk) 21:26, 6 December 2008 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Protecting children's privacy#Proposed remedies for the guidance from ArbCom on this subject. - BanyanTree 07:34, 8 December 2008 (UTC)

2 questions: one about contributions[edit]


First off, is this the right page for me to be asking this question--I'm still a bit of a beginner here.

Second, I want to contribute to Wikipedia, as I indeed like it a lot, but I loves my privacy.
What would happen if I sent cash--from $20 to $100--in a reasonably opaque envelop, with my username, an email address I got for free (in my case Yahoo! but I suppose there are many others), and maybe post a message on my username:talk page. Would it be accepted, used well, and would no one else accredit it to anyone but me?

Yartett (talk) 20:47, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

Generally speaking, you're not advised to ever send cash through the mail system - it's not secure and passes through the hands of many people who are capable of detecting it and have no qualms about taking it. Instead, you might consider setting up a proxy to donate on your behalf, or creating an anonymous Paypal account associated with your Wikipedia user to donate with (in this case, only Paypal would be able to link your user to your real life identity). Dcoetzee 21:47, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
Your warning is not to be taken lightly and is noted, however, it's not the first time I've sent cash via the mails; further I don't even want Pay Pal to know about me. Again, the question is, what if I did it, and what if the letter reached Wikimedia's fund address. What would they do with the letter?Yartett (talk) 21:54, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
I'm sure they would accept the donation, but keep in mind that there is additional administrative cost to processing an unusual cash donation, and you might receive a warning on your talk page about it. As for whether you'd receive credit, I don't know - I'm speculating and you're better off getting in touch directly with the people who process donations. Try the e-mail address info (at) Dcoetzee 22:18, 7 December 2008 (UTC)

Beagle Boys[edit]

I really don't like IP addresses as user names. But I haven't come here to propose disallowing them; that has been proposed many times already and I guess there's a good reason why we have them. No, I just came here because I feel it's always better to take things in good humor. So I propose to refer to them as Beagle Boys. — Sebastian 19:52, 8 December 2008 (UTC)

Fishery templates[edit]

The fishery articles use a number of fishery templates to form a somewhat hierarchical network across the articles. Since these have been installed, the traffic for fishery articles has much increased, particularly for the lower level articles. However, every now and then, someone comes along, and wants, usually without discussion, to introduce their own idea of layout, or simply removes templates or pushes them out of the way. Sometimes editors come along who seem malicious. Is there some forum where I can get these issues properly considered by capable editors without axes to grind? --Geronimo20 (talk) 02:12, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

This has been posted on several forums, and the user has been pointed to the steps listed in WP:DR. — Sebastian 04:27, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

pseudonym?Emily C. Orr[edit]

Does anyone know if the 19th century author, Emily C. Orr is a pseudonym? "She" wrote, "Thoughts For Working Days"; published in 1894 in London, England by the Society For Promoting Christian Knowledge. The New York publisher was E.& J.B. Young & Co. "She" also wrote "Thoughts For Men & Women".

B. Clarke —Preceding unsigned comment added by Baclarke (talkcontribs) 18:29, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

You should ask this at the Humanities Reference Desk, where you'll find editors much more knowledgable on literature.-gadfium 19:37, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Let's just end the virgin killer wars and get back to buisness[edit]

Friends,Romans,countrymen, lend me your ears. I relisted virgin killer on IFD for the sole reason that for a fair-use image, the controvery that it has created makes it seem rediculous to keep. Thousands of users have had their acess impeded for the sake of "policy."[1] I say the product is the most important and no policy is too important never to be ignored. So lets let all those users back in by putting this picture out of it's misery for the sake of the project and it's content. I have asked for wider input on ths to see if the keepers of that content agree.--Ipatrol (talk) 23:29, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Looks like it got speedily kept already. Celarnor Talk to me 23:36, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

I see, Well, I would like to keep this up as a more general discussion with fresh eyes as weather to grant the image an IAR exemption rather than delete it. I want the communtity to establish a consensus as to weather or not WP:NOTCENSORED or a few other policies should apply to this image. If the community agrees to grant an exemption, then we might re-nominated with that in mind. If the issue permenantly subsides and the IWF and the WMF can reach an agreement, then we can put this issue to rest.--Ipatrol (talk) 00:15, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

The issue has already been put to rest, as there has been broad consensus to keep the image as it is, and continued renomination at this point would be rather pointy and probably disruptive. The IWF action is now essentially a non-issue, as they have retracted their block. Tarc (talk) 01:54, 10 December 2008 (UTC)


Could somebody who knows Roman History check the edits made by I'm not sure what they're doing is vandalism or is actually improving these articles. Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 02:53, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

Tricky. Particularly since some of these articles are of extremely un-notable Romans. But they do need checking (and deleting altogether in some cases). -- Derek Ross | Talk 04:58, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
I've passed this on to Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Classical Greece and Rome. Any further discussion should be held there. -- Derek Ross | Talk 20:36, 10 December 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. I was looking for a Wikipedia:WikiProject Ancient Rome and couldn't fine one.  :) Little Red Riding Hoodtalk 00:21, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

Article type/subject area statistics request[edit]

This is either a request for information that already exists, or a suggestion for creating it... I have often wondered what types of articles make up the bulk of wikipedia, and would love to see, for instance, a pie chart showing this. E.g. what percentage of all articles are about places, about people, companies, entertainment, etc. It seems to me (particularly when I use the 'random article' function) that certain more or less un-historically important categories (TV shows of the late 20th c, minor bands, etc) are massively represented compared to other, more significant areas, but I'd love to see it in numbers. -Wormcast (talk) 01:31, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

Someone actually did a small sample of this fairly recently, in fact: Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Countering_systemic_bias#Article_distribution. ♫ Melodia Chaconne ♫ (talk) 03:13, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
Excellent - that was pretty much exactly what I was looking for. Thanks, Melodia! -Wormcast (talk) 11:57, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

WWE Hardcore Title page[edit]

Why is stated that the reigns for the Hardcore Title at Wrestlemania 2000 are not recongised by the WWE, when they are recongised in all of the WWE Superstars bio pages. But when i change the info it gets deleted --Wolfman123 (talk) 17:07, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

Do you have a reliable source for your changes. – ukexpat (talk) 17:41, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

A "new" wikipedia[edit]

Hello, My name is Graham I am 13 years old and use wikipedia alot for school. What i think would be great is a Wikipedia for kids, because normal wikipedia is very complitcated and hard to understand often in 9th,8th,7th grade etc. Would be great, thanks. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:50, 23 November 2008 (UTC)

Have a look at the simple English Wikipedia. Algebraist 17:01, 23 November 2008 (UTC)
The simple English Wikipedia has simple content, but its interface and syntax rules and programming are the same as regular wikipedia. What Wikipedia could use would be a very simple instruction manual. The Wiki syntax language is quite simple to use once you understand it. Kingturtle (talk) 02:54, 24 November 2008 (UTC)
I think the OP is saying that WP's content is complicated. I don't think he was talking about editing. Zain Ebrahim (talk) 09:07, 27 November 2008 (UTC)
What would be pretty siiick is if there could be some kind of mirror site or something that had all the same info as wikipedia, but wasn't wikipedia so it could be used as a source for school. And yes, I know it won't happen. But it would still be cool. And I do know that there are ways to get around wikipedia's not being allowed, so nobody tell me something like that (if anyone even says anything). So now i'm gonna just stop talking. yeah... Petero9 (talk) 01:05, 2 December 2008 (UTC)
There's hundreds of mirrors of Wikipedia. Just take a random chunk of text from a Wikipedia article and google it. I don't see why they would be a more reliable source than Wikipedia itself though. Mr.Z-man 01:25, 2 December 2008 (UTC)
Simple English Wikipedia is not simple content. The content is the same, but uses simple words. The interface looks the same, but again, uses more simple words. For example, have a look at the article American Airlines Flight 11, not a simple topic, but it uses simple words. Kennedy (talk) 16:49, 4 December 2008 (UTC)
I think what Pereo9 is getting at is that someone could select a stable, reliable version of a large number of articles and use it to construct a static version of Wikipedia that could be cited. Anyone could do this and I imagine there are some similar efforts to this underway. Dcoetzee 21:52, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
something like Wikipedia for Schools by any chance? DuncanHill (talk) 20:29, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Where do I post a request for expansion of an article?[edit]

The page for article expansion has been archived and more or less abandoned. So if I think there is an article that needs help (specifically, the article on angels although I would like to know the answer in general as well), where do I post such a request? Please don't tell me to do it myself, since the reason I'm asking is because I want information about the topic. Minaker (talk) 09:44, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

thanks man Minaker (talk) 23:53, 12 December 2008 (UTC)
Another option, if you think that an important aspect of a topic, or an entire topic that is important, is being neglected, is to post a note at the talk page(s) of the WikiProject(s) that are listed on the article talk page. Best to explain why the aspect/topic is important, not just say "Please work on this", since WikiProjects always have plenty of work yet to be done. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 22:06, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

elapsed time[edit]

is anyone aware of a template that calculates future and elapsed time (T+/T-) rendered: xx years, xx months, xx days. my first choice was {{For year month day}}, however, it apparently cannot handle the future. --emerson7 19:16, 12 December 2008 (UTC)

This is better asked at either the technical page of the Village pump or where the template experts hang out. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 22:03, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

World Club Championship?[edit]

What channel are Manchester United playing their games in the world club championship on in england --Wolfman123 (talk) 02:47, 13 December 2008 (UTC)

Questions unrelated to editing Wikipedia should be asked at the Reference desk. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 22:01, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

And now for something completely different ...[edit]

I've been trying to update the game guide to include all the latest information about WikiPedia – could someone please check that I've included all the Game Master spells? In other words, what do you think of the updated page? It Is Me Here t / c 14:59, 13 December 2008 (UTC)

Some folks really do spend wayyyyyyy too much time here! LOL! Roger (talk) 20:25, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

number of edits over time[edit]

I noticed I was suddenly able to keep up with special:recentchanges again, and realised it had gone past midnight in the united states. Do we have any pretty graphs of number of edits per time interval to show how much variation there is in number of edits? --fvw* 07:45, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Really bad article[edit]


I couldn't figure out how to properly flag this, so I'm posting it here. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Lumarine (talkcontribs) 19:01, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Page has been deleted. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 21:56, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Threats of violence form letter[edit]

While participating in a recent TOV thread at ANI, I noticed that, while there are suggestions on how to respond to threats, there is doesn't seem to be a form letter to serve as an example of how a good contact attempt to a law enforcement agency should look. I've quickly thrown one together at User:Mendaliv/TOV letter, and would like some further outside input. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 19:09, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

File:Lunar libration with phase Oct 2007.gif[edit]

This file has been included in the Moon article. While it is an excellent image, I feel a significantly reduced version should be created for article use. 9.64 MB is quite a download for bringing up an article, and a heavily trafficked one at that. Does anyone agree... or am I alone on this one? - RoyBoy 09:33, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

The full-sized image isn't displayed to a reader, as best as I can tell (if it was, it would disrupt the article). Instead, only a "thumbnail" is displayed (the syntax for the image should be something like this: [[Image:Imagename.gif | thumb | other optional parameters]]). That means a reduced version is in fact created (by the MediaWiki software) for display purposes. Only if the reader actually clicks on the image would he/she get the full download. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 21:09, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
IIRC, automatic thumbnailing of gifs was disabled recently because the scaling of some animated gifs was killing the relevant servers. I just checked, and the full 9.6 MiB image is being embedded in Moon at this time. Anomie 02:28, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
I clocked my bandwidth while the page was loading, it was long and painful; and I have solid 10mbit cable connection. I will ask the author to do another version. - RoyBoy 03:07, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
An animated gif with this many frames, at this resolution is hard to get to acceptable sizes without significant sacrifices in quality. I'm fooling around in ImageReady with the optimization settings, but I don't think it'll be easy to get it under 1MB. What about making it into an OGV and uploading it that way? What's it like when you put one of those in an article? —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 03:48, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
Looks to me like that'd be a good solution; see Voice coil for an example of using OGV. The thumbnail is about 9KB, while the whole file is 3.09 MB. I'll try converting and uploading the GIF but it'd probably be better to go from whatever the sources for that file are. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 03:50, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
File:Lunar libration with phase Oct 2007.ogv is 308 KB itself. If I set the quality on the encoder to max, I think it's about 1MB, but I don't think the quality difference is visually noticeable. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 04:52, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
The November 2005 image, File:Lunar libration with phase2.gif, is less than 1MB. Consider using it instead. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs)/(e-mail) 04:03, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
Done. Would have done it earlier, but for some reason last week I didn't think they were equivalent; but I must have been out to lunch. Thanks for making me take a second look. - RoyBoy 05:07, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

Query: "Allegation" v "Conjecture"[edit]

I was pretty sure they were quite distinct, but a short time ago I found an editor who was quite adamant that they were quite the same.

"Conjecture is absolutely fine in a BLP, as per BLP policy/guidelines" with "By definition, all allegations are conjectural" and "Thus conjectures MADE BY SOURCES are just peachy. And nothing I have suggested is a conjectural interpretation of a source. You ARE A FLAT OUT LIAR so I am not sure if I am even going to bother to rebut the rest of your comments."

The issue was about a source making a decidedly conjectural prediction (I noted also WP:CRYSTAL in claiming that such a prediction of future events was a conjecture). But what is the word "conjecture" supposed to mean in WP? Is "allegation" a simple subset of "conjecture"? Many thanks! Collect (talk) 12:42, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

It would be helpful if you would link to the discussion in question for more background. Allegation is defined as "An assertion, especially an accusation, not necessarily based on facts", or "the act of alleging" which could include legal testimony; conjecture is "A statement or an idea which is unproven, but is thought to be true". To me, there is a fine difference: "conjecture" says "I think this is true, but it needs to be rigorously tested/proven" (e.g. scientific hypothesis) while "allegation" says "I state this is true, although I present no proof" (e.g. legal testimony/accusation). As far as Wikipedia goes, neither allegation nor conjecture is appropriate in articles unless that allegation/conjecture is found in a reliable source (see WP:OR). The allegation/conjecture should not be misrepresented as proven fact; that would not be WP:OR, but it would be misuse of the source. If controversial, the statement should be specifically attributed to the source in question ("A says X" rather than just "X") and mainstream opposing viewpoints should be represented. Anomie 13:58, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
There were, in fact,more than one instance where this arose in Sarah Palin. One example arose where a person used a source to say Palin might run for office in 2012, while she denied it. To me, that fell into "crystal ball gazing." The other was where a cite was given to indicate that Palin was a "young earth creationist" who believed dinosaurs were "Jesus ponies" on the basis that an article said that people who had Palin's religious beliefs, believed that. I considered both to be, in fact, conjecture which requires extreme care in a BLP. Only the first was WP:CRYSTAL. Does projection future political runs fall intot he area of "conjecture" and does attribution of religious beliefs fall into that category? I am trying to present this in as neutral a manner as possible, to be sure. (BTW, I thought "conjecture" was more on the line of "this may be true or turn out to be true, but I have no basis to assert that it is true." Thanks! Collect (talk) 14:16, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
In the first example, the paragraph at the end of the "2008 vice-presidential campaign" section in this revision strikes me as ideal. In that paragraph, we lay out the fact that speculation exists and Palin's response without making any prediction of our own as to whether she will end up running or not. I haven't dug into the history to try to identify the statement you mention to see how different it was from that version.
In the second example, there are multiple issues. First, if Palin doesn't self-identify with those religious beliefs, it's probably against WP:BLP to attribute the beliefs to her. Second, I'd look closely to see if the source is really reliable; something talking about "Jesus ponies" sounds fringe to me. Third, if the source addresses "Religious group X" but not Palin specifically, it's close enough to WP:SYN to fail the stringent requirements of WP:BLP. And if all that passes, I still doubt the statement is WP:NPOV enough to not be a violation of WP:BLP. Anomie 19:30, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

Please help with a scientific workshop on editing Wikipedia[edit]

As you can read on my user page, the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) is hosting a workshop this Tuesday, the 16th, to give their scientists a crash course in editing Wikipedia, especially for creating cell-biology articles. Tim and I are running the workshop, but we could benefit from your help! We'd like to find friendly, online Wikipedians who will greet the newbie scientists and offer to help them with their first articles. It seems like a great way to bring the scientific and Wikipedia communities a little closer.

The workshop will run from 12:30-2:30pm local San Francisco time. Tim and I will be speaking until ~1pm, and the participants won't start their user pages until 12:45pm at the earliest. We'll ask them to add the template {{ASCB workshop}} to their user page, which will add them to the Category:ASCB 2008 Wikipedia workshop participants category. Then you'll be able to see who's participating and welcome them. Other help with categorization, finding/formatting images and references, etc. would be much appreciated. Proteins (talk) 14:48, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

As a one-time classicist, now a lawyer I can't help with the scientific stuff , but happy to help with welcoming and other wiki stuff. – ukexpat (talk) 15:13, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

Thank you very much, ukexpat! Welcoming and wiki-stuff is just what we're hoping for; the scientists will probably want to take care of the science themselves. ;) We'd just like to keep Wikipedia from seeming too poluphloisboisterous in their first steps, Proteins (talk) 17:17, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

WorldNetDaily pattern of anon IP edits[edit]

I guess WorldNetDaily threatened to sue Wikipedia in 2007, which may or may not have anything to do with the ongoing push-pull going on in the last couple months at that article. But is seems odd to me that there has been (what looks to me as) an incessant pattern of anon IP editors dropping in to the article and scrubbing out the non-flattering content. I am interested in third opinions about this. SaltyBoatr (talk) 18:59, 10 December 2008 (UTC)

Effects of this also seems to be spilling over at the Joseph Farah article. SaltyBoatr (talk) 16:17, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
That's because Farah's busy frothing about some simple vandalism in his columns. Apparently an IP screwing around is analogous to the end of Western civilization as we know it. Tony Fox (arf!) 16:48, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

Conway's Game of Life[edit]

<moved to Entertainment desk here[5] Julia Rossi (talk) 10:04, 16 December 2008 (UTC)>

<moved to Computing Reference Desk here: Wikipedia:Reference desk/Computing#Conway's Game of Life. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 14:00, 16 December 2008 (UTC)>

Poor researching by regular editor[edit]

Resolved From now on, you should consider this a guideline for your editors: If you don't know anything about it, find someone who does. Deleting an article on the Church of the SubGenius is about as lacking in cultural knowledge as deleting an article on Burning Man, Skull and Bones, or Survival Research Laboratories. Seriously, Kraftlos needs to be spanked for putting a Notability on the Church of the SubGenius. With three books, two of which were published by Simon and Schuster, and a film featuring Negativland and Mark Mothersbaugh of DEVO, this one is a no-brainer. Even a basic search of the WWW provides several hundred thousand references to it. That should be relevance enough. (talk) 20:23, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

The point of wikipedia is that anybody can edit anything however they see fit, and that enough other people will (or, at least, should) counter-edit until errors are removed. Expecting that nobody will ever make any errors in the first place is silly. The proper response is not to put a comment here, as some sort of demonstration of your cultural smarts, but to edit the article as you see fit. Go ahead and remove the box if it's wrong. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 23:21, 11 December 2008 (UTC)
I note that the article was never deleted, only that its notability was questioned. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 22:11, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
He doesn't seem to know the difference. --Kraftlos (Talk | Contrib) 02:15, 18 December 2008 (UTC)

Prominent inclusionists?[edit]

I desperately come here for advice. Anyone here know any prominent inclusionists who help form wikipolicy? Unfortunately, I know a hell of a lot of prominent, powerful, deletionists, but not one prominent inclusionist. I look forward to your reply. Inclusionist (talk) 07:54, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

  • So become one. But beware, with great power... –Pomte 08:45, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
    • Users Uncle G and DGG are models of intelligent and discriminating inclusionism and the former seems to have been quite influential in forming policy. Colonel Warden (talk) 13:13, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
      • You may find some through WP:ARS. User:Benjiboi has a fantastic track record of rescuing articles from deletion, but has perhaps less policy weight than the aforementioned users. Skomorokh 17:15, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
        • If you have any interest in fictional topics, see the opposing editors at Wikipedia:Requests for adminship/Sgeureka. They probably have a similar mindset to you. :) (Just read the RfA, and especially its talk page, to understand!) —Erik (talkcontrib) 19:20, 14 December 2008 (UTC)
          • Thank you all. Really wonderful suggestions. Another user suggested Wikipedia talk:Userfication to find those who are attempting to influence wikipolicy. Thank you again all.

            User:Benjiboi doesn't seem interested in policy. Inclusionist (talk) 23:56, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

            • Which shouldn't happen, because deletion of inappropriate content is necessary for the health of the project. Why are you using an article talk page as a project soapbox, exactly? This thread should be continued elsewhere, if at all. Chris Cunningham (not at work) - talk 00:24, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
              • I refactored my comments, anyone else have some good suggestions? Inclusionist (talk) 00:36, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: The only "-ist" I espouse being is encyclopaedist. The only times that people use "deletionist" and "inclusionist" is to call other editors names, something which I wholeheartedly disagree with (c.f. Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Deletion/archive1#Name calling is a bad idea, for example, or my own talk page in 2007). Yes, I've given Wikipedia the Wikipedia:Guide to deletion, the big green box that opened the floodgates when it came to the Wikipedia:Biography of living persons wording on people notable for just one event, and the Primary Notability Criterion that helped with a formulation of Wikipedia:Notability that a lot of people could back, along with many other things. But I did and do those purely as an encyclopaedist, not as any other "-ist". And I certainly disagree with the notion that Wikipedia policy is mainly formed by "a hell of a lot of prominent, powerful, deletionists". That's more name calling. I said in 2007 that I don't recall ever having seen the use of either "deletionist" or "inclusionist" improve a discussion, and it is still true, even here. Uncle G (talk) 00:54, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
Uncle G, Colonel Warden was right you are "[a] model of intelligent and discriminating inclusionism", because to get anything done here on wikipedia, you have to build consensus, that means ignoring or keeping to yourself the obvious, stroking egos, and building alliances.
I really love your appeal to unity, which I am sure appeals to Wikipedians.
It is like Barack Obama's patriotic speeches:
We are not conservatives or liberals, blacks or whites, we are all Americans.
Nevermind that their are actually black people and white people and conservative people and liberal people. Mr. Obama is going to ignore the obvious to build unity and consensus.
The terms deletionism and inclusionism came from outside observers of Wikipedia, dozens of journalist in the media, Deletionism and inclusionism in Wikipedia (where this message was before you moved it). It is a reality, even if it is publicly condemned as an expletive by consensus building "models of intelligent and discriminating inclusionism".
I didn't post this question to build consensus, I don't have the patience or charisma that you do Uncle G. I posted this question to find like minded editors who are troubled by what is happening on wikipedia. I look forward to more suggestions. Inclusionist (talk) 01:50, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
Me. I don't know how prominent I am, but I tend to err on the side of keeping in close cases. Many cases aren't close and I've done my share of speedy, prod, and prod2 tags as well as my share of "Delete" recommendations at xFD. However, if the topic is "marginally notable" I'll usually give a "weak keep" or remove the PROD or questionable SPEEDY tag, or at the very least recommend a keep+redirect so the edit history is kept, or boldly-redirect a PROD to avert history loss in the inevitable AFD. By the way, every editor who participates in xFD or takes any other actions that result in articles being deleted or not deleted is by definition affecting Wikipolicy - either by affirming the existing policy or by indicating that the existing policy does not have unanimous consent and may not even have WP:CONSENSUS. This applies whether or not they participate in the Wikipedia_talk: policy discussion pages. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs)/(e-mail) 02:24, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
davidwr, any suggestions were editors such as yourself tend to congregate? For example, I notice that editors who tend to support Wikipedia talk:Articles for deletion tend to congregate there, and editors who like to enforce perceived and actual copyright violations tend to congregate at Wikipedia:Copyrights. An editor suggested Wikipedia talk:Userfication today, for those who have different views about article content. Any suggestions davidwr? Inclusionist (talk) 04:10, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
Wikipedia:Article Rescue Squadron. I would be quite careful about where you take this train of thought. You are a couple of steps from creating a group whose purpose is to direct its members to influence policy/process over the consensus that may be existing on those topics, which is the definition of Wikipedia:Tag team. Such a group may be subject to accusations of meatpuppetry and its members may be subject to administrative sanctions. I would also suggest that if you find that you find yourself in the minority viewpoint in a numerous related discussions, it may be worth considering if you actually have a minority policy viewpoint, rather than assuming that there are a bunch of editors who share your viewpoint that you can't find. - BanyanTree 08:24, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
I see nothing wrong with tag teams groups of like-minded editors as long as there is full disclosure when two or more people are voicing an opinion on the same subject and they behave with civility. In fact, if, say, 7 editors are editing an article, then over the next month 20 new editors edit it in ways the first 7 don't like, you could argue that the 20 now form the basis for a new consensus, or at least they've done away with the existing consensus. If that 20 grows to 50, then there's a clear new consensus. Technically, 7 people can block consensus in a group of 57, but it's very hard absent proof of real meatpuppetry. If those 50 were all students at the same college with the same professor, then yeah, you might be able to prove puppetry but otherwise, it would be hard. There are already groups like WP:PAW whose primary purpose is to watchlist articles as a group to preserve their POV idea of what NPOV means. I wouldn't be surprised if there are similar groups that watchlist other controversial articles, such as those related to Israel and Palestine. If you are in such a group, make very sure you are open about it and expect people to treat the unified voice of 5 members of the group as 1 voice rather than 5. By the way, what appears to be a minority may be a silent majority. The problem is, in a project like Wikipedia, silence implies either ignorance of or consent to the status quo. I may not agree with the status quo but I may consent to it in the interest of not wasting time. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs)/(e-mail) 18:48, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
No clue. The type of article-rescue I do doesn't require collaboration. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs)/(e-mail) 18:48, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
I think we exist but have a measurably lower sense of self-prominence. — CharlotteWebb 19:02, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
Wikipedia should be a botanical garden, with representative specimens labelled, fenced, and neatly presented. Wikipedia is not – or shouldn't be – a jungle; we're evolving past the stage of being a random hodgepodge of dense prose, slapdash lists, or impenetrable tangles of words. Sometimes the cleanup takes trellises, stakes, and water, sometimes it requires machetes. Is the gardener who pulls weeds and trims the topiary a 'deletionist'?
We're all editors. Slapping labels on each other is a derisive, dismissive, insulting practice; editors who engage in it ought to be embarrassed. (What's the old saying — anyone more liberal than I am is a communist, anyone more conservative is a fascist....) Pretending that all opinions and approaches to article content on Wikipedia can be divided into just two overarching categories is beyond the absurd. (Look how well that approach works in U.S. politics.) In reality, we have thousands of volunteers with millions of hours of collective experience. May of those editors have rational, detailed, nuanced opinions about article inclusion, editing, categorization, deletion, expansion, formatting, and organization.
The way to deal with those evil 'deletionists' isn't to go form your own private mob. The mature approach is through calm, clear, concise presentation of rational, detailed arguments. The 'deletionist' bogeymen aren't part of some secret cabal bent on destroying Wikipedia. Try engaging with them as thinking adults rather than as enemies to be thwarted. -TenOfAllTrades(talk) 20:01, 15 December 2008 (UTC)
Some gardeners like pareterres and some like cottage gardens. Some gardeners abominate topiary, considering it a form of control freakery and preferring to allow their plants to take a natural form. A gardener may consider both formal and informal gardens appropriate in different settings. This is a matter of taste, not rationality. Globbet (talk) 00:06, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
While analogies can sometimes be slippery things, I think that you're making my point. I fully agree with you that some questions are matters of taste. But the essence is that we're all gardeners. While there are genuine disagreements about the best approaches we should take, we all are still trying to build a garden. No one here is – or at least none should be – trying to construct a wheat field, a jungle, a skyscraper, or a parking lot. We're all working on an encyclopedia; we're not MySpace, a washing machine repair manual, or a British Rail timetable.
That's at the heart of why I so intensely dislike the use of the 'inclusionist' and 'deletionist' labels. Implicitly or explicitly, the more militant self-identified 'inclusionists' suggest that they are the valuable contributors building the project up. The vile 'deletionists', meanwhile, want only to destroy and should be marginalized where they cannot be cast out entirely. Not to put too fine a point on it, but it's utter bollocks.
Out in the real (non-Wikipedia) world, there are hundreds of different print and electronic volumes which identify themselves as encyclopedias. They range from the general to the specific, from the Britannica to The Star Trek Encyclopedia. Each of those tomes has its own voice and its own style; collectively they have hundreds of different editors and thousands of authors. On Wikipedia, we have one encyclopedia. We have to get all of those thousands of authors to pull together under one set of house rules, one house style, one set of standards for organization and inclusion of content. We're very nearly the only game in town (if you're looking for a massively-collaborative open encyclopedia project), so an editor who doesn't like the house style can't just leave to work somewhere else. Inevitably, this generates friction.
So what's the solution? You don't see the topiary guys stabbing the cottage-garden guys with their trowels down at the garden center. There aren't us-versus-them horticultural holy wars. We've only got one encyclopedia. That isn't going to change, so we might as well make the best of it. That means engaging with the people with whom we disagree as intelligent people, not dismissing them as 'deletionists' and hoping that they go away. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 16:17, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
To be fair, some of the militant 'deletionists' think they are the only thing preventing Wikipedia from becoming an unusable pile of stinking garbage, and the vile 'inclusionists' are fanboys/girls who should be ignored when it comes time to decide whether something should be kept or deleted. I'd have to say that's utter bollocks as well.
I'm not completely sure I agree with you on the "one set of standards for organization and inclusion of content", when we cover everything from quantum mechanics to genetics to advanced mathematics to history to politics to television shows to websites to widespread Internet memes and other popular culture phenomena. That's not to say any topic area should be "anything goes", but what is necessary for some fields is almost impossible to find for others. Making one strict set of standards leads to rules like "everything must be edible to be allowed in the garden", and flower gardeners are out of luck. Anomie 18:31, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
If I were to revisit the sentence, I might emphasize it as "one set of standards...". I think we all understand that we evaluate physicists and football players – or, for that matter, football players and chemical compounds – by different criteria. My point was more that we try to apply the same standards and styles across all the articles or topics in a class (all football players are evaluated for inclusion in the same way, and they have their own infobox style), not that we necessarily try to build one gigantic, monolithic inclusion policy or structure. There are necessarily different approaches to displaying lichen, gardenias, lianas, and giant redwoods. Mind you, I do fear that we may be pushing the limits of the gardening metaphor. TenOfAllTrades(talk) 23:36, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

Warning, 4chan is spreading rumor on Erin Andrews[edit]

Warning, 4chan is spreading rumors on Erin Andrews, one of their target is to edit to article of Erin Andrews on Wikipedia. -- (talk) 07:03, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

The article Erin Andrews has been semi-protected. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 02:28, 18 December 2008 (UTC)

Author reactions to speedy deletion[edit]

Has anyone compiled any statistics on author reaction to speedy deletion? It might be interesting to know—and helpful in assessing possible improvements to the templates and notifications—the percentages of speedy deletion templates followed by:

  1. no further activity from the author;
  2. continued work on the article by the author while ignoring the tag;
  3. deletion of the tag by the author;
  4. placement of a hang-on tag but in the wrong place;
  5. placement of a hang-on tag and removal of the deletion tag by the author;
  6. placement of a hang-on tag without going on to make a case for keeping the article;
  7. placement of a hang-on tag and then giving arguments right there in the article instead of on the Talk page;
  8. placement of a hang-on tag followed by submission of a coherent and relevant argument on the Talk page (i.e., the Holy Grail).

—Largo Plazo (talk) 22:14, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

My guess would be that the vast majority (over 90%?) of the time, there is no further activity, simply because such a high percentage of CSDs are removing absolute crud.
Which isn't to say that I'm against gathering data, but I note that (a) you can't know completely what an author did in response to CSD template unless you wait until the moment that the article is deleted, and then (b) only an admin can see the deleted page. (In other words, this is a survey that only an admin can do).
Also, if someone is going to go to the bother of doing this, I hope that he/she separates the data by CSD type.
Finally, I note that the data may in fact not be "helpful in assessing possible improvements to the templates and notifications. Let's suppose that the results are: #1 - 50%; #2 - 15%; #3 - 4%; #4 - 3%; #5 - 10%; #6 - 3%; #7 - 15%. What would that mean in terms of what wording needs to be changed? -- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:22, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

New script for screens wider than 800x600[edit]

To make WP vaguely readable on wide screens, I knocked up a script this afternoon to make the articles the right width and place images and boxes correctly in the margin. It should work on everything except IE, but only tested on FF (and monobook). This is probably not the best place to post, but I was wondering if anyone had any feedback. The code is not the best, but apart from that, any comments would be helpful.

To use it, edit Special:MyPage/monobook.js and add

importScript( 'User:Kan8eDie/columnlayout.css' );

then press Ctl-F5 (or similar) and enjoy!

The expected behaviour is for everything on the right to position itself close to the text margin. What do you feel about pre (the dotted box just above): should I make that narrow as well? — Kan8eDie (talk) 19:06, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

My screen res is 1280x1084 (Win XP) and I have no problems viewing WP via Firefox - everything lines up properly on both margins. So in my case, I don't see what your script would do, or am I missing something? – ukexpat (talk) 20:03, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
1440x900 hasn't been a problem for me either. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 21:04, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
All works here too (Vista Home Premium SP1 notebook, 32 bit, 1280x800, FF 3.0.4). Dendodge TalkContribs 21:40, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
No - I was unclear (Edited post above). On even 1024px wide screens, the lines of text are a bit too long. This script fixes that by adding a margin down the right. The normal WP layout expands with the screen, even if (as in my case) it is a widescreen. Now all the extra horizontal space can be freed up and used properly by pictures and so on (as in many printed books with illustrations in wide margins). With my font and screen settings, by default I get 135em long text lines, which is clearly bad, and resizing the browser defeats the point of having a wide screen in the first place. Screenshots here: [6] [7] [8].— Kan8eDie (talk) 02:41, 18 December 2008 (UTC)

Tagging articles - what happens then?[edit]

What happens to an article when it is tagged? I've come across a couple of totally unreferenced articles, not been 100% comfortable about nominating them for deletion (as they may well be notable - I'm not sure how to interepret WP's policy on notability in the field of self help authors, for example) and so have tagged them as needing references, clean-up, etc... but what happens then? Does someone need to look at the specific article I've tagged and decide to improve it, or is there a general list of articles that need references, etc, based on tagging? Tagging the article seems the most appropriate thing to do in the circumstances if I'm not overly inclined to take it to AFD, but it seems a bit pointless if all it means is that the tag is on the top of the page. Any thoughts? Should I just take them to AFD and risk a speedy keep? Richard Hock (talk) 16:07, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

  • The best thing to do would be to find some references and add them yourself, but of course that's not always possible for someone unfamiliar with the topic. You could also ask for help finding sources at the relevant WikiProjects.

    Tagging adds the article to appropriate tracking categories (e.g. Category:Articles lacking sources), which anyone can look through to find articles needing work. Whether people commonly do this or not, I don't know. Anomie 17:32, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

    • Richard, I notice you recently added {{unreferenced}} to Sue Mayfield. From the Google results, it appears that she is notable. The problem is that there really is no labor force standing by to fix those tags; they tend to stay there forever. I did a quick look to see if I could find a WP:RS reference for her work but could not. If you have the time to search for a reference, it is more useful to the world than adding the tag. EdJohnston (talk) 17:56, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
      • This is the thing, I am not surprised that Sue Mayfield, for example, turns out to be notable - but is there an alternative to fixing all the references myself? I often come across unreferenced articles and don't have the chance to search for refs, tidy the article, etc... is there any middle ground between totally re-writing an article with refs, or tagging it with a tag no-one is likely to read? Richard Hock (talk) 19:18, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
        • I've just noticed the article on Norris McWhirter is unreferenced. I suppose it would be bad form to add an unreferenced tag! Richard Hock (talk) 20:06, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
          • Not at all, I just tagged it. At least that puts it in the appropriate category. – ukexpat (talk) 20:13, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
            • At the least tagging the article allows a bot to go through WP collecting stats on what percentage of articles need improvement. And perhaps in the future someone will deal with the list of unreferenced articles that tagging generates even if no one is exactly attacking the task with gusto at the moment. -- Derek Ross | Talk 20:17, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
        • Yes, it is keeping the article as it stands, looking for supporting sources, and adding citations of supporting sources in the appropriate places. This is a collaborative project. Just as one can come along to an article and correct a few spelling mistakes without having to completely rewrite it, one can come along to an article and add source citations to it without having to completely rewrite it. A complete rewrite is always an option, as is reducing a sprawling mess of wholly unsourced rubbish to a well-sourced stub with plenty of further reading. But it's not the only option, any more than nominating an unsourced article for deletion is the only option. The choice depends from circumstances, and the goal should always be article development. There are many tools in the toolbox. See User:Uncle G/Wikipedia triage and User:Uncle G/On sources and content#Dealing with unsourced content for more, and this edit for an example. Uncle G (talk) 20:22, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
    • I've been known to pick random articles from the cleanup categories and work in them when I'm bored. A more important thing tagging does is it alerts readers that the article may not be well-researched. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs)/(e-mail) 21:37, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

Remember, however, that tags are a visual blight which detracts from the ability of people to enjoy and use wikipedia (compared to the "stub" tag or Talk page discussion, which allows searching and editor interaction but doesn't interfere with casual usage). For that reason, they should be limited to *very important* topics, like concerns about bias, lack of sources, or debate about deletion. Also, if you encounter a tag that you think is inappropriate, you are free to remove it. Like all editing, whatever one person has added, another can remove; tags don't have some special protection.

When tags were first developed, people created frivolous ones about minor style issues and subjective beliefs, like "this introduction is too long" - I once ran across somebody who wanted to created a tag about semicolon usage - and hurtled them around with abandon. Wikipedia started to look like MySpace. Most of the silly tags seem to have disappeared, happily, at least as far as I can tell. - DavidWBrooks (talk) 22:02, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

is there any middle ground between totally re-writing an article with refs, or tagging it with a tag no-one is likely to read? Yes: find one or more good sources of information, and add them to the External links section (or, if a source is off-line, to a "Further reading" section). Readers of the article will appreciate a good link(s); editors will be able to use that/them for building out the article. (As a plus: if you can't find anything at all, then pop a notability template onto the article, and - ideally - a note on the article talk page that you looked but couldn't find anything; that will help other editors decide where to propose the article for deletion.) -- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:36, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
Firstly you are generally expected to discuss the removal of a tag if reasons have been given for adding it and removing a tag without fixing issues that have been mentioned or at least explaining why you feel the concerns raised are not valid is usually frowned upon (of course this is no different from the rest of wikipedia). Secondly most cleanup tags are by definition there for the reader and not just editor. If they were only for the editor then they usually should be on the article talk page. The fact is the tag reflects the fact that one editor has noticed the article has a problem, and explains what that problem is. One would hope that most readers read the tag and use it to help them gauge how much to trust the article. Definitely I as a reader, find them rather useful (as an editor, since I'm not generally involved in that area I don't find them useful much at all except perhaps NPOV). To use the specific example, unreferenced doesn't just mean the article may not be notable, it could mean the article is a complete hoax [9] and even it it's not major details could be wrong. Unreferenced of course is one of the more major templates along with NPOV related stuff and a few others. Slightly more minor ones like worldwide view tell the reader 'this article may be accurate in some locations/people but it could be totally wrong for other locations/people'. Yes ideally readers should notice these things themselves but there's no guarantee particularly in the more oblique cases in any case, telling them before hand gives them some idea of what to expect and the chance to go somewhere else without reading if they so desire. Even more minor ones like a intro too long template etc aren't so important but they still of course tell the reader "In My Article There Is Problem, and the problem is the intro too long" (sorry couldn't resist when it occured to me) and can also be considered and apologise to the reader for a crappy article as well as telling the reader our policy is to produce better stuff then this. Even something like expand tells the reader "this article may be missing a fair amount of information". This is why the templates have colours, they reflect the urgency of the situation to the reader. The other complication of course is that while arguably the more minor cleanup templates aren't that important it will be rather confusing and contentious if we try to decide which cleanup templates are important enough for the reader and which aren't (the general Template:Cleanup however says it should be used on talk pages if the cleanup is minor enough). Definitely of course stuff like semicolon usage presuming we had that is unnecessary anywhere. BTW, while a seperate class I would argue even deletion templates have some utility to the reader, they tell the reader not to be surprised if the article disappears in 5 days (of course they should never be surprised but there's a far greater chance). Nil Einne (talk) 16:28, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
Or to put it a different way, you see visual blight, I see useful and often important information for the reader. Or as I think I once said somewhere else it's not the template which is the visual blight but the article. If we didn't have shitty articles we wouldn't need 'blighty' templates. In any case they look a lot better then they used to since the redesign. Nil Einne (talk) 16:28, 18 December 2008 (UTC)

"Get a poster of this picture" on[edit]

On fr, we've just added a new link/menu on picture pages to get a poster of the picture. It has just started with a first French printer WikiPosters.
I think that's worth announcing this here.
If you're interested, I translated the project page and a small press release.
Plyd (talk) 16:53, 17 December 2008 (UTC)

English Project Page: fr:Projet:Impression/en
English Press Release: fr:Projet:Impression/Press Release

This has only been enabled for pictures on; see, for example, see this photo; by comparision, the same photo at Commons has no link for getting a poster.
Also, the English Press Release says "Whatever the image, posters are all sold from only 0,45€ (plus shipping cost)", without indicating who receives the actual payment; that's of interest to everyone and should be clearly stated. Looking at this page, it appears that a private company is involved; the company says that for each poster it sells that it gives 1.5 euros (about $2 US) to the French Wikimedia chapter ("donne maintenant à Wikimédia France 1,50€ par poster distribué.") -- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:07, 17 December 2008 (UTC)
Yes. 1.50€ is per order actually. I'm going to complete the press release. Plyd 09:09, 18 December 2008 (UTC)

Out of date featured content[edit]

So I just clicked on "Featured content" and the first thing it showed me was a section labelled "Featured article: January 27, 2006". The content of the section was apparently lifted from €2 commemorative coins on that date. It includes the following sentence:

Up to now, fourteen €2 commemorative coins have been minted—six in 2004 and eight in 2005. Eight more are currently planned to be minted in 2006.

Needless to say, the article in question no longer says this. So that page is presenting information more than two years out of date as examples of "the best that Wikipedia has to offer". And I'm sure that particular example is not the only one. Doing things this way seems like a bad idea to me. -- (talk) 06:40, 18 December 2008 (UTC)

If the article in question no longer says it, there is no problem. The particular page you looked at appears to be the blurb the main page used on the day it was featured and is only retained for historical reference. - Mgm|(talk) 11:04, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
If it's only retained for historical reference, why is it shown to readers every 1 in however many times someone views Portal:Featured content? (talk) 22:41, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
Because that's a blurb based on the version that earned featured status, while the current article has since been updated? When thinking of the term "historical reference", imagine what the words might mean, especially when put together. - BanyanTree 01:01, 19 December 2008 (UTC)

I think the question is, why does the "featured content" link take the viewer to the article as it was at the time it was featured, rather than its current version? And the answer is: changes made to the article since then may have degraded it so that it no longer would qualify as featured content. Featured status cannot give a seal of approval to all subsequent versions, only to the version that was approved. --A Knight Who Says Ni (talk) 14:32, 19 December 2008 (UTC)

Help needed[edit]

I've just used some custom python scripts to parse, extract, and wikify a large portion of the Stanford Archive (a large repository of quiz bowl packets). The lists can be found linked from Wikipedia:Stanford Archive answers. I could use help polishing up the lists - fixing parse errors, removing blue links. And of course, creating redirects and writing articles. Raul654 (talk) 10:37, 19 December 2008 (UTC)

George Mackenzie[edit]

Who is George Mackenzie whom Richard Bright accompanied on a summer expedition in 1810? (See George Mackenzie (disambiguation)) George Mackenzie was dead in 1691.

Nicolae Coman (talk) 19:28, 19 December 2008 (UTC)

Presumably he's a George Mackenzie who does not have an article written about him yet. The Reference desk may be able to help further. – ukexpat (talk) 19:36, 19 December 2008 (UTC)

Images in Christmas Pudding article[edit]

Hopefully this is the right place to ask for any opinions on this :) Basically, there are some really useful images on the Christmas Pudding article, but I feel that they are a little distracting/could be placed in a better layout. I've suggested placing the images in a gallery, but I want to get some editors opinions first. Am I just being terribly picky or is there a better solution? Thanks :) londonsista Prod 07:58, 18 December 2008 (UTC)

There are only five photos, but the current layout is messy. First try right aligning all of them, see how it looks. If it is still too crowded use a gallery. To see how an article with a large number of photos uses right align as well as a gallery, take a look at Star Alliance. Roger (talk) 14:38, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
FWIW, I think the gallery in Star Alliance is excessive and unnecessary. The article is about the aviation alliance and should not be an aviation fansite. – ukexpat (talk) 15:27, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
I agree with you. It would probably be better to set up a gallery page for the livery images on the Commons site, then link to that.—RJH (talk) 21:01, 18 December 2008 (UTC)
While this page is certainly one place to get opinions of editors, another, often better, is the discussion page of the article (in this case, Talk:Christmas pudding) or the discussion page for any WikiProjects which have the article within their scope (in this, Wikipedia Talk:WikiProject Food and drink). -- John Broughton (♫♫) 21:37, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

2008 ArbCom election results completed[edit]

Jimbo has announced the results of the 2008 Arbitration Commitee elections. Ten new members have been appointed to ArbCom. The results can be found at Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee Elections December 2008#Results. 04:04, 21 December 2008 (UTC)

Searching for templates[edit]

Hello. I am looking for a template that aligns other templates on the left side of the page, as well, a way to align the Table of contents on right side. Does anyone now where I can find this? Thanks, Do U(knome)? yes...or no 21:34, 21 December 2008 (UTC)

  • No need for any templates. Just dump them all in a div and float it left (if they don't go there by themselves) and you can do the same trick with a TOC, as:
<div style="float: right">__TOC__</div>

Make sure you really need this though, as the WP:MOS wants the TOC undisturbed unless absolutely necessary. You can use {{clear}} if needed as well.— Kan8eDie (talk) 21:47, 21 December 2008 (UTC)

Thanks! It was for some silly work on my talk page. Do U(knome)? yes...or no 22:19, 21 December 2008 (UTC)
{{TOCright}} displays the table of contents wherever the template is located, aligned right; no need for HTML. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 21:31, 22 December 2008 (UTC)

Category + stub won't post[edit]

For a new page I just wrote, Artillery Mountains, the stub tag & category are in the code, but for some reason, won't show up on the actual page. Help? TIA, Pete Tillman (talk) 01:39, 23 December 2008 (UTC)

Unclosed ref. Fixed. Algebraist 01:42, 23 December 2008 (UTC)
Duh. Thanks! Cheers, Pete Tillman (talk)

Proposed rename of WP:ENC[edit]

I figured its worth mentioning that there is a proposal to rename Wikipedia:Wikipedia is an encyclopedia (WP:ENC) under discussion, at Wikipedia talk:Wikipedia is an encyclopedia#Requested move. The present name seems to attract a lot of confusion, since the page is more "not" than "is". Since the page is something of an institution, I thought it worth inviting comment from the Peanut gallery Rogues Gallery Rouges Gallery my fellow Wikipedians. —DragonHawk (talk|hist) 03:31, 23 December 2008 (UTC)

Teething Issues ?[edit]

Forgive me as a greenhorn intruding on an area which appears to have somehow developed the aggressive cliquiness of a centuries old hall of learning.

I'm a new user to Wikipedia. I read occasional articles and check occasional facts here.

First may I congratulate you on the impressive achievement of this site. You have created an oracle - a bank that contains probably the greatest amount of general information ever gathered and distributed in human history. Some of the world's great libraries may have more - but how accessible are they ? So I post first in wonder and awe at your achievements.

Now the niggles.

First the sense of proportion in the topics. I read a feature on the PC computer game "Freedom Force". Fantastic. Very detailed, picture of the cover, what, from my own knowledge of superhero comics, was a very good commentary on the likely inspirations for the characters. Then I wanted some information about Oliver Cromwell. I think I found the quote but there was a nagging sense of disappointment. One of the pivotal figures in English history and the article on him was only two thirds of the length of the article on a PC game. Is there a maximum length to articles ? If so how would you cover the significance of a Leonardo Da Vinci or an Adolf Hitler appropriately ?

Secondly the "house style" is very bland. Whilst I expect there are editorial guidelines limiting opinion and conjecture, the article on Blondie, one of the seminal bands of the late 1970s early 1980s, whilst well presented and including excerpts of the band's music never even tried to capture the living essence of the band. Wikipedia risks becoming the entropic man - dessicating and withering its subjects. Perhaps you could encourage authors to include quotes from contemporary and later sources on topics that might enliven them ? Yes there will be historical figures - Bill Clinton for example - who will remain controversial for many years and for whom the only acceptable procedure will be to limit commentary to verifiable facts. But for bands, music, art, animals, places of beauty and wonder in our world - to not describe the emotional impact is to fail to describe them honestly at all.

S....x. —Preceding unsigned comment added by ScarletSorceror (talkcontribs) 00:09, 23 December 2008 (UTC)

It's not "you" - it's "us." You are as much a part of wikipedia as anybody else ... so get to work! - DavidWBrooks (talk) 00:26, 23 December 2008 (UTC)
More to the point:
(1) Wikipedia is entirely written by unpaid volunteers, and no one has agreed to be told what to work on and what not to work on. If there is more interest in improving and expanding an article about a computer game than an article about a historical figure, then the computer game article will be longer and more detailed. And while there are suggestions as to maximum length (see the "article length" subtopic in the Editor's index), more important subjects essentially have longer articles by having "daughter articles", in what Wikipedia calls summary style.
(2) Wikipedia has a policy against original writing, and another policy requiring neutral wording. Bland writing is clearly the safest way to follow both policies. But quotations from reliable sources can be acceptable (depending on whether they are seen as giving undue weight to a particular viewpoint). Again, do keep in mind that with hundreds of thousands of contributors, who have widely varying familiarity with Wikipedia rules, you'll find some articles that do meet your suggestions, though by far the majority of the 2.6 million or so articles will not.
So, as David suggested, when you find an article that you think really, really needs improving, consider improving it yourself. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 03:00, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
Did anyone notice that Freedom Force (computer game) has barely more than a page, while Oliver Cromwell is a well matured article, far beyond the age of teething? PurpleSorceress (talk) 03:27, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
No, I missed that. What is obvious is that both the initial posting editor (User:ScarletSorceror) and you have absolutely no contributions other than to this discussion, and (obviously) similar names. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:27, 26 December 2008 (UTC)


whyisFLEMISH/BRABANTIANnotcoded??[4BABEL--Sven70 (talk) 11:52, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

What are you talking about? Algebraist 11:54, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
I think what you mean is why don't the languages Flemish and Brabantian have language codes. Try posting your question at Wikipedia:Reference desk/Language. You might want to get a native English speaker to help you with this as you seem to be having trouble communicating in English. Tra (Talk) 14:10, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
Well, calling Flemish a "language" is perhaps presumptive: the initial sentence of the article Flemish says "Flemish ... is a popular informal term to refer to ... Dutch as spoken in Belgium." Dutch, on the other hand, is a language; the Wikipedia version is at , and has more than 500,000 articles. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:39, 26 December 2008 (UTC)
I suppose that might be why it doesn't have a code, but I'm not a linguist. Anyway, the person who started this thread is currently blocked, so there's not much more that can be done here. Tra (Talk) 00:25, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Are next picture public domain[edit]

In picture File:SalMineo.jpg will be read that image is believed to be in public domain.

In webside Iballer will be read a lot of information.

Can I move this picture to commons without deletion. --Musamies (talk) 16:05, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

You can ask at Commons - specifically, at their village pump. Or you can simply go ahead and post a copy a Commons and see what happens. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:33, 26 December 2008 (UTC)

Review process[edit]

An article 'Speed of light' that I have been working on has recently been downgraded from FA to B-class. Can somebody please explain to me how the review process works, who takes part in it, and how I can find out why the article was downgraded.

See Wikipedia:Featured article review/Speed of light/archive1. Algebraist 16:56, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for that. I think that I have seen it before but found it hard to believe that it represented any form of serious review process. It seems to consist of a few editor making rather minor MOS points and I can find no conclusion or agreement to downgrade the article. Also, there were no comments at all about the article content. Who does the reviews? Is it any editor? Martin Hogbin (talk) 17:11, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
The mechanics are described at Wikipedia:Featured article review. Any editor can initiate a review of a featured article. During this stage any editor can add additional concerns (presumably related to WP:FACR). If the concerns are not addressed, the FAR proceeds to the FARC stage. If the concerns remain unaddressed (in the opinion of the featured article director or his delegate, usually user:Marskell), the article's featured status is removed. After this, the article can be renominated following the normal procedure at WP:FAC. -- Rick Block (talk) 17:33, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
Thanks. Martin Hogbin (talk) 22:52, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
It's worth remembering that FA are our best work so 'minor MOS points' are a concern. Also the concern about the lack of citations expressed by a number of editors hardly seems a 'minor MOS point' Nil Einne (talk) 11:50, 26 December 2008 (UTC)

Carroll Shelby Article[edit]

Suggest that you add this to his "Other Projects" —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:56, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

Suggestions for articles should be posted on the related article talk page; in this case, Talk:Carroll Shelby. -- John Broughton (♫♫) 23:28, 26 December 2008 (UTC)

My unfortunate experience with Wikipedia[edit]

My post relates to the Wikipedia article on the late Jamaican reggae singer, Hortense Ellis. I am not only the creator of the Official Hortense Ellis website but Hortense and I were personal friends for over 20 years before her death in October 2000. The website and the MySpace pages have the full blessing and encouragement of the Ellis family. The existing Wiki bio for Hortense Ellis is considered by myself and the Ellis family to be woefully inadequate. We feel that she deserves much better. I have previously edited and greatly enlarged the existing Wiki bio. The Wiki "moderators" took it upon themselves to delete my efforts and restore the original bio commenting "a second bio is not considered necessary". It was not a second bio - it was the original bio considerably enlarged. I have invited Wikipedia to draw any material they choose from the Hortense Ellis website. They are simply not interested; apparently content to allow the existing inadequate Hortense Ellis bio to remain as the Wiki entry. If Wiki are happy to take such bizarre action against a person who actually knew the subject of the bio - i.e. rejecting a comprehensive bio in favor of the existing brief paragraph - how can they expect to be considered a reliable reference source. I find the Wikipedia moderators to be totally arrogant, not only by their action in rejecting a valid contribution, but also in the way they responded to the complaint that obviously followed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jimobasa (talkcontribs) 02:27, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Actually, the reason for the reversions appear to have been due to copyvio and that the same editor attempted to upload his own version of the text to a different article. In any case, the above editor apparently hasn't attempted to discuss these issues at Talk:Hortense Ellis. Otherwise this is more of a matter for WP:EAR. —/Mendaliv//Δ's/ 02:37, 27 December 2008 (UTC)
(e/c)The basis of the issue is that we have to assume that the websites that you refer to contain copyright material. Wikipedia cannot accept material that is in violation of copyright -- see WP:COPYVIO. There are two things you should do: 1. Discuss the changes that you propose on the article's talk page, disclosing your conflict of interest and noting the references that you intend to use to support your proposed changes. 2. Follow the procedure at WP:IOWN to release the copyright materials for use on Wikipedia. Finally, there are no "moderators" on Wikipedia - we are all editors, though some editors have admin privileges. Hope this helps. – ukexpat (talk) 02:43, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

I.P donation banner[edit]

The giant "MESSAGE FROM JIMBO WALES" font size is way to large for the box and the amount of space it takes up, Its a giant distraction and i would suggest making the font a smaller size. (talk) 09:50, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

Have a look at WP:VPT#Fundraising banner (Personal appeal); this issue is being looked in to. Tra (Talk) 14:13, 24 December 2008 (UTC)
I have an issue with that, as well. I don't think there is any font-size scaling or whatever. I get the same size text looking at it from my oversized desktop monitor as well as my tiny monitor on my Asus Eee PC laptop (in which the latter results in overspill of the text). MuZemike (talk) 18:52, 24 December 2008 (UTC)

I get comments on this from several users, and they say it does not look professional. My standard reply is that the way the banner display is closely connected with the state of Wikipedia, that is, not much care is taken for details, so dont expect any improvement anytime soon... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:04, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

The problem also seems to be only with MSIE, both Firefox and Safari render it correctly, thus it can be considered a penalty on those jerks that use MSIE, as such users are not of interest for Wikipedia anyway... So shame on them and no problem for us! —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:29, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Account deletion[edit]

Hi, I was wondering how I can delete my own account; I do not wish to contribute to Wikipedia anymore. And if this isn't possible, can someone responsible with this task delete it for me? Alexgb93 (talk) 16:26, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Due to the fact that Wikipedia content is licensed under the GFDL, all edits must be kept for attribution purposes, and so your account cannot be deleted. You do, however, have the right to vanish, which you can exercise by (1) requesting your user page (found at Special:Mypage) and/or user talk page (found at Special:Mytalk) be deleted, by adding the {{db-userreq}} template to them; (2) requesting to change your username to something that is unconnected with you (possibly a random collection of letters and numbers); (3) never logging in to your account again. If you do this, you may not register a new username to continue editing Wikipedia as invoking your right to vanish is final. – ukexpat (talk) 16:50, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia Co-founder Jimmy Wales[edit]

Resolved: on this page anyway. ukexpat (talk) 22:25, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Where is the best place to discuss the Personal Appeal From Wikipedia Founder Jimmy Wales that appears at the top of each page?? Can somebody at least change it to read co-founder as is the case?? Thank you,--Tom 21:33, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Already under discussion at: Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)#Wikipedia Co-founder Jimmy Wales. Please continue the discussion there, and please in future do not post the same question in more than one place, it leads to broken discussions and smacks of forum-shopping. – ukexpat (talk) 21:45, 27 December 2008 (UTC)
Thanks for the heads up. I wasn't sure where this should be posted, so I apoligize for the duplication. Cheers! --Tom 22:05, 27 December 2008 (UTC)

Transwiki to Wikia...?[edit]

Is it possible to transwiki articles to Wikia? Specifically, Meantime (video game) and Fountain of Dreams to the Fallout Wiki; is there a technical/political/legal reason this would not be possible? If it is possible, how is it done? If it is not possible, laaaame. ~ JohnnyMrNinja 02:40, 28 December 2008 (UTC)

As long as the Wikia wiki is GFDL (which it is, I'm not sure if all of them are), you can. You'll need a sysop from the Wikia wiki or someone else there (staff?) who can access Special:Import on the Wikia wiki. Then they just need to export a copy of the page history from here using Special:Export (making sure to uncheck "Include only the current revision, not the full history"). Mr.Z-man 03:23, 28 December 2008 (UTC)
Will do, thanks! ~ JohnnyMrNinja 03:10, 30 December 2008 (UTC)

John Lennon talks about... Wikipedia?![edit]

Imagine every child, no matter where in the world they were, can access a universe of knowledge. They would have a chance to learn, to dream, to achieve anything they want. I tried to do it through my music. But now, you can do it in a very different way. You can give a child a laptop, and more than Imagine, you can change the world. [10]

For a second, I thought he was talking about Wikipedia there. If you change the last sentence a bit, it sums up Wikipedia better then Jimbo did when he wrote about "the sum of all human knowledge". Wikipedia doesn't need to be a sum. A small selection of our most fascinating articles may be enough to change someone's thoughts. Wikipedia is amazing. I hope it will continue to grow in 2009, and I hope you will help! Happy new year everyone! - Face 21:11, 31 December 2008 (UTC)

John Lennon's doing commercials now? Maybe he just needs the cash. I used to have so much respect for him... ~ JohnnyMrNinja 21:24, 31 December 2008 (UTC)

This could be interpreted to mean Wikipedia is Communism™, but fortunately our right to leave contradicts this. P.S. I recommend the Perfect Circle cover version. — CharlotteWebb 22:10, 31 December 2008 (UTC)

"Imagine every child, no matter where in the world they were, can access a universe of knowledge. They would have a chance to learn, to dream, to achieve anything they want. I tried to do it through my music. But now, you can do it in a very different way. You can give a child a laptop, and more than Imagine, you can change the world." There, fixed that for you, John. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs)/(e-mail) 23:45, 31 December 2008 (UTC)