Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)/Archive 110

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CC licenses and POD publishers

Just found an interesting abuse of the Creative Commons license...is it legal for a print-on-demand publisher to "curate" (i.e. take a Wikipedia article or two or several) arrange them in a book format and offer it for sale? Because Hephaestus Books did with Slab hut and other articles into a book called Wooden Buildings and Structures, Including: Slab Hut, Bush Carpentry, Buswartehobel ISBN 9781242493300[1]

Apparently, a 36-pages of Wikipedia articles gets offered at $20.69.--ColonelHenry (talk) 17:13, 24 September 2013 (UTC)

Well, the content is CC-BY-SA. They attribute it to Wikipedia (and by extension, the authors here), and commercial use and derivative works are not prohibited. So, as long as they share the content (SA) under the same license, they are fine, but I can't see the actual bound book to make sure of the last point. So in short, nothing stops them, but they as a company create no value for the human race. Chris857 (talk) 17:22, 24 September 2013 (UTC)
(ec)As long as the publisher abides by the conditions (i.e. the book is also permissively licensed, and they properly attribute the contents to Wikipedia), this is legal. It's shady, but it has happened for years, and sometimes these "books" have been offered for hundreds of RCUs (Reasonable Currency Units). --Stephan Schulz (talk) 17:26, 24 September 2013 (UTC)
It is absolutely legal, provided that they properly attribute the article authors ("BY" in CC-BY-SA) and note that their content is freely licensed ("SA" of that license). There is a license with a noncommercial provision at Creative Commons, and we explicitly don't use that, because free licensing means you may use the content for any purpose. If someone wants to repackage and sell it, that's perfectly legal under that free license, provided they follow its other terms. Seraphimblade Talk to me 14:56, 26 September 2013 (UTC)
The relevant policy is WP:Reusing Wikipedia content. The authors must be attributed – a URL to the article on Wikipedia is acceptable because the page history is one click away, but a mere "from Wikipedia" would be insufficient. Flatscan (talk) 04:07, 27 September 2013 (UTC)
Note that although the *text* of articles is GFDL slash CC-BY-SA, the images are *not* necessarily something you can publish in a book, distribute to your friends, et cetera. Many of the images in wikipedia are there because of fair-use justification, and printing the images into a book and selling the book will not usually qualify. [2][3][4] See also [5], which covers the analogous situation for software. 74.192.84.101 (talk) 13:08, 28 September 2013 (UTC)
Sucks to be them, I guess. The copyright owner will eventually notice what's happening & file a slam-dunk infringement case against them. (I figure Wikipedia is somewhat immune because one could argue the infringement does not make money, so there are no damages to collect on; selling a book with those images, however...) -- llywrch (talk) 20:57, 1 October 2013 (UTC)

California 'Deletion' Law..

I've noted in a BBC News item that California's passed a new law relating to data privacy, http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-24227095

I'd like therefore to open a disscussion on what changes are needed (if any ) in Wikipedia/Wikimedia policy and guidelines, when it comes into force. ShakespeareFan00 (talk) 12:23, 26 September 2013 (UTC)

  1. Law Takes effect in 2015
  2. Law relates to the personal details posted by minors from the state of California
  3. Law covers information that is mostly covered by our personal information disclosure policies
For these reasons, the best place for any WP/WM policy changes should be [6]. Speedy close this as the policy MUST come from Foundation first. Hasteur (talk) 12:48, 26 September 2013 (UTC)
Agreed. This is something for the board to decide with actual legal advice. What we decide over here may be irrelevant without their input. -- A Certain White Cat chi? 13:44, 26 September 2013 (UTC)
Agree we need to wait for WMF counsel to figure out a position. The law may not even apply to Wikipedia, and if it does, there are some potential alternatives to actual removal of content contributions that may satisfy the law. Finally, there is the question of the constitutionality of the law. Its a complex interplay of questions that is best left to the legal team. Monty845 14:10, 26 September 2013 (UTC)
Obviously, as the others say, legal needs to make the call. But, reading the BBC article, it appears to apply only to content posted by the minors themselves. We already tend to delete/revdel/oversight when minors post excessive personal information such as phone numbers and addresses, etc., so we're probably slightly ahead of the curve already. If material posted by others does not apply, then there shouldn't be much of an impact on articles that relate to notable minors from California, as we would be writing our articles based on second party sources, not the individuals themselves. Resolute 14:26, 26 September 2013 (UTC)
Correct. And we've been doing this for years, so removing this sort of personal information ASAP is already well-established policy. -- The Anome (talk) 12:44, 28 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Semi-related comment A new privacy policy is being developed for all Wikimedia related projects. An active discussion is taking place at meta:Talk:Privacy policy for the next several months (until 15 January 2014). Everybody is encouraged to participate. 64.40.54.31 (talk) 01:35, 27 September 2013 (UTC)

As a matter of general interest, Wikipedians can read the text of the bill here. I'll say the following few things:

  1. It's not as scary as it sounds.
  2. We can likely abide by this law with few or no changes to the revdel/oversight policies.
  3. The meaning appears vague, especially in section 22581(b)(2).

It is best to let the Foundation's legal counsel to decide how this new law should influence Wikipedia policy, and to what extent Wikipedia falls under the jurisdiction of California state law. It would be hasty for us to change policy without a directive from the foundation. You can always email the foundation with your concerns. Someguy1221 (talk) 02:08, 27 September 2013 (UTC)

Also agree this is a WMF decision. However, everyone needs to keep in mind when reading the lastest news about xy place passing a new law about the internet- we don't follow every single law in every single jurisdiction, nor should we ever. The WMF does not have a physical presence in California to my knowledge. California law does not apply. When Florida passes the law, then I assume it matters because the servers are there. Frankly, if California tried to enforce it on Wikipedia they would get struck down as overstepping state powers regarding interstate commerce and federal preemption in regulating the internet.Camelbinky (talk) 15:37, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
However, it might be the case that if a Californian editor violates the law despite the location of the servers (they moved them from Florida, I though?) then that person can be prosecuted under California law, and it might be the case that WP/WMF has to consider whether to divulge the information about the user to the authorities if that comes up. I'm pretty sure our disclaimers do point out that users are bound by their local laws (the location of the WP servers does not immune them from that), so this doesn't require any change, but it might be one of those things we need to spell out if the WMF decides so. --MASEM (t) 15:46, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
(edit conflict) Welll.. Their main office appears to be in San Francisco, CA. And I think they moved the primary data center from Florida to Virginia. Chris857 (talk) 15:47, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
For example, Amazon.com is headed in Seattle but California is still trying to make them pay sales taxes. Although CA can't control the internet, it can control the people living within it such as myself who use the internet. Konveyor Belt express your horror at my edits 16:31, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
It may have changed, but that last Supreme Court/federal appeals court rulings on the matter decided that companies only were required to collect sales tax on internet sales if they had a physical presence (eg- warehouse/distribution center or call center). I was not aware of the move of the servers, or even that the WMF was located in San Francisco; some how those tidbits of knowledge never crossed paths with me before. Thank you, I enjoy learning new things! :) Camelbinky (talk) 19:38, 30 September 2013 (UTC)
@Konveyor Belt: - While Amazon.com has its headquarters in Seattle, it has several locations in California. GoingBatty (talk) 23:29, 1 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment As I read the BBC article, this law is to ENABLE young people to get their personal info deleted. I would think that the main point of this is to deal with those social media sites that, so I have heard, will not allow deletion of information. Here, we sometimes delete minors' personal information against their wishes (and have to be quite stern about it), never mind on request... I also take it that the sort of info normally found in an article is not the 'personal info' referred to. It's the mail links, phone numbers, house addresses, school names and so on, that's the target. Not that Shaun Bloggs-Hatpin is an actor aged 10 in a soap opera centred around a San Diego launderette that airs on CRAP-TV - that (if true) is public knowledge not personal info. (If not true, it goes ASAP anyway...) Peridon (talk) 16:22, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
    Interesting stuff, but as has been said above, this is unlikely to effect us. If interest persists, I may give a talk about this at the next Wikimania. Cheers! bd2412 T 20:18, 5 October 2013 (UTC)

RFC: Arbitration Committee Elections December 2013

The yearly Arbitration Committee Election request for comments is now open. There remain some unresolved issues from last year to discuss, and editors have also expressed a desire to propose changes. All editors are invited to participate. The way the RFC is to be conducted has been modified from previous years by a recent RFC, the changes are summarized at the top of the RFC, reviewing them may be helpful. Monty845 00:31, 1 October 2013 (UTC)

It is probably posted elsewhere, but . . ....

what is our policy to putting links in articles that trnsport the reader to (for example) the Russian language wikipedia. It was an unsettling and disapointing experience. It happened at Treasure Island, in the Film section, for the 1937 Soviet version. Einar aka Carptrash (talk) 23:20, 1 October 2013 (UTC)

@Carptrash: - I just added three instances of {{ill}} to Treasure Island#Film and TV to hopefully make the interwiki links more clear. GoingBatty (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 23:44, 1 October 2013 (UTC)

Notability of items in a list

Dear policy experts:

I am having difficulty finding a summary of notability policy about items in a stand alone list. I have found much discussion, but I haven't found "WP:Notability (lists)" or a similar policy page. Can someone direct me to the appropriate article? I am reviewing a list article at Afc. (Wikipedia talk:Articles for creation/List of notable alumni of Maritzburg College) From reading various discussions, my take on this is that the list must be about something notable, and this is a list of notable people who attended a certain college, and the college has a Wikipedia article. Also, from my understanding, items on the list don't have to all be notable enough for their own Wikipedia article, but those that don't at least need a citation to a reliable source to verify that they are a legitimate member of the list. Am I on the right track? And if the list title says "Notable alumni", should each item be checked to see if sources are available, one cited and then the item redlinked? Or is this too fussy for promotion out of Afc, and should unreferenced list items be just tagged "citation needed" for future improvement?

I have separate questions about copyright issues with this article-to-be, since some of the list information is taken from a web site, but since it consists mainly of the names and occupations of the people, and the items have been somewhat rearranged and added to, it's hard to see how anything different could have been written. —Anne Delong (talk) 15:46, 2 October 2013 (UTC)

FWIW, related policies/guidelines are at WP:SAL, WP:LISTN, and WP:NLIST.
The short answer is there's no real overarching policy/guideline for list notability. There is general agreement that if the list itself is notable, that's good, but other lists are considered acceptable. In the case you have, a list of people from X, we generally require that the person has a blue-linked, stand-alone article or directly part of a larger group article (for example, the person being a member of a notable band). While it is possible there are other people that can be confirmed to be from X via reliable sources, if the person is not notable (red-linked) they should not be on the list. The idea being that if we didn't restrict that, then pretty much anyone that qualifies as being from X could get their way onto that list with one source. For sourcing the list, as long as the names are blue there's usually agreement sourcing should be on the linked article, but it does not hurt to ask for sources on the list itself for confirmation. --MASEM (t) 15:56, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for your reply. When you say that a person has to be from a notable organization, this can get iffy. For example, if one of the alumni is a member of the South African Navy, a notable organization, that doesn't mean they are necessarily a notable member. But if he's an admiral? Or the CEO of an organization with an article? —Anne Delong (talk) 16:31, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
He said "member of a notable band," not "member of a notable organization," as an example of someone who may not merit a standalone article but was still covered in a group article. postdlf (talk) 16:40, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
Okay, that clarifies a bit; so if the person doesn't have their own article, at least there should be a link to an article that includes substantial information about them, so that if a reader of the list clicks on a link to the article, they will find out about the person and their role in the organization, and not just about the organization in general. Agreed? —Anne Delong (talk) 16:51, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
I think you may need to consider the absence of an article on the individual as a strong suggestion that they don't deserve a place on the list, rather than as an absolute rule. It's perfectly possible that there are individuals notable enough for articles who haven't got them yet. However, you'll probably want to err on the side of caution there, rather than opening the floodgates to endless discussion of marginal individuals' notability or non-notability! Barnabypage (talk) 17:02, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
Remember that we still need the source , in this case of the person being an alumni from there, and likely better than just a primary source to be sure we're talking the same person. John Q Smith may be a member of notable band X but if there's nothing outside the school's records that asserts he's an alumni, I wouldn't include him on that list. --MASEM (t) 17:21, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
(typed before previous post)Yes, I agree. However, as was mentioned above, there doesn't seem to be a consistent policy, probably because the list are so varied. Here's a list I maintain, which is pretty plain and mostly blue-linked: List of bluegrass bands. Here's one where the list items mainly don't have links: List of asteroid-discovering observatories. Here's another which has many many redlinks, but probably wouldn't serve its purpose of enumerating the types of engines if they were left out: List of aircraft engines. —Anne Delong (talk) 18:03, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
Yes, and I guess there is an inherent difference between lists like List of newspapers in Wales which can be complete, and can benefit from being so (although true completeness is still a Sisyphean task), and other lists like List of people from New York, where the criteria for inclusion are less clear-cut and thus the moment of completeness is always going to be debatable, and probably never reached to everyone's satisfaction. Barnabypage (talk) 18:22, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
Okay, I found this: WP:LISTPEOPLE which sums it up not too badly. Thanks, everyone for your input. —Anne Delong (talk) 18:31, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
Barnabypage nails the point - if there is potential for the list to be indiscriminate/non-finite, notability or some other subjective measure of entries should come into play to prevent the list from becoming indiscriminate, and sources should be available to demonstrate why the item should be on the list. --MASEM (t) 18:42, 2 October 2013 (UTC)

Discussion at Talk:PrankvsPrank/Archives/ 1#Edit Warring

You are invited to join the discussion at Talk:PrankvsPrank/Archives/ 1#Edit Warring. Ross Hill  Talk to me!  22:06, 4 October 2013 (UTC)

MOSAM and LEAD

Discussion continued here Wikipedia_talk:Manual_of_Style/Anime-_and_manga-related_articles. We can consider Village Pump to have been notified of a potential LOCALCONSENSUS issue. It is nonetheless better to keep discussion in one place, rather than shopping around to various fora. Feel free to notify the discussion at MOSAM broadly - but please keep such notifications neutral.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 01:28, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

I'm worried there seems to be an entire Wikiproject arguing against using WP:LEAD on their articles. Adam Cuerden (talk) 12:36, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

I'm worried that there seems to be an editor ignoring WP:CANVASS. --erachima talk 13:50, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
A Wikiproject cannot be selective in what policies it wishes to follow and not follow. Several editors are arguing that the topic doesn't need to be discussed in the first sentence, in violation of WP:BEGIN. As MOSAM is a community guideline, the community should be asked to weigh in when the Wikiproject goes against the wider consensus. Particularly confusing is how this avoidance of LEAD results in "all-in-one" articles that cover no topic in appropriate detail for the GA or FA guidelines and use this to remove topical splits per CFORK. Previously this Wikiproject had made MOSAM a community guideline without discussion and superceded notability guidelines, both issues that were dealt with by the greater community. This is not canvassing as MOSAM belongs to the community and the Wikiproject has a known history of a local consensus that flies in the face of policies and guidelines. ChrisGualtieri (talk) 14:51, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Editors are free to come give their opinion on the correct interpretation of WP:LEAD in the linked thread, but as this post is both a textbook WP:CANVASS violation which the editor will not repair when asked ([7]) and threatens to further spaghettify a discussion that's already had major problems with splits across pages and forum-shopping, it's best closed. --erachima talk 15:27, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I'm staying out of this. Do not reinsert my edit or collapse. Do it yourself. I cannot be in any discussion why the mediation is going on. This certainly would count. I suggest Ryulong also stay out. ChrisGualtieri (talk) 18:43, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

WP:ANIME has never "argued against using WP:LEAD on their articles"; that is simply untrue. There was a discussion on the interpretation of WP:BEGIN here, but it went to no consensus, leading to Adam to reopen the discussion here. This was basically my argument on the issue. Also, Chirs' "this avoidance of LEAD results in "all-in-one" articles...and use this to remove topical splits per CFORK" is also untrue. First of all, WP:LEAD has never been "avoided", and even if it was, that wouldn't result in "all-in-one" articles or how articles are structured and/or merged together; that's up to consensus to decide. By that, I mean that even if a topic or subtopic (typically this is an anime adaptation, in relation to previous debates at WP:ANIME) meets WP:GNG, it is up to consensus to decide if such an article should be created. Many editors have cited these adaptation articles as content-forking because of the large overlap between an anime adaptation and its original media, which is one of the WP:MERGE#Reasons for merger.-- 21:06, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

The project is advocating for not fully giving the article scope into several paragraphs in. WP:LEAD requirest the subject be set out in the first sentence, the project is advocating for a first sentence that is actively misleading as to scope.
To explain simply, the project wants to, as a general rule, combine manga and anime articles from the same franchise, but think it's fine not to mention the anime at all' until several paragraphs in, using the opening paragraphs to frame the article as being about the manga. This is not only a gross violation of common sense, it goes directly against the spirit and probably letter of WP:LEAD's requirement that the first sentence states the subject of the article.

Yhis is a partiocularly egregious requirement, encouraged, in practice, by their editing addvice. I simply wanted to add language about making the articles comply with [[WP:L>EAD]], and they're argfuing for how it doesn't apply to them. Adam Cuerden (talk) 14:15, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

Adam, you have refused to even make a proposal as to what you want the wording changed to, have refused to rephrase this topic to comply with canvass, and are now attempting to move an argument you lost in flagrant violation of the forum shopping policy. Until you fix all of those things, your arguments have zero weight. --erachima talk 16:18, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
Actually, WP:LEAD says the lead section must summarize the article, not the first sentence. WP:BEGIN gives some suggestions as to how the first sentence should be written, but then again, there is some dispute about what constitutes the "topic": is it just the original media, and the adaptations are part of the sub-topic by default (my stance); or is it all the media in a series (your stance). Either way, this is up to debate, so in now way does the status quo violate WP:LEAD.-- 21:14, 10 October 2013 (UTC)
Really, this is getting disruptive so far this issue have been brought at WP:ANI, Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Anime- and manga-related articles, here in the past and now here we are again. I suggested we form a consensus and that was scrapped in favor of mediation I can see that went no-where. Now it is turning into WP:DISRUPTIVE namely WP:POVPUSH when a majority of editors have already told you Adam that WP:LEAD is not an issue. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 01:00, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

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

BLP is the relevant policy for personal attacks?

As evidenced by a comment at User talk:Jimbo Wales/Archive 144#The flag of Spain is banned in ca.wikipedia.org international listings of flags. Why? and similar comments creeping up around Wikipedia threads there is this trend around talk pages to consider that any personal attack against a Wikipedian editor is a violation of WP:BLP. I don't think that is the spirit of BLP and I believe we should make it clear BLP is about BIOGRAPHIES, specifically the topics of our articles, other relevant policies exist for incivility and douchebaggery (there really is a wp:DOUCHEBAG). I thought this would be the best place with the biggest community input instead of taking it to the BLP talk page, but if people think that's the best place to start then I'll move the discussion there.Camelbinky (talk) 14:25, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

BLP is about any living person. But you may be right about BLP being overapplied in some cases. Calling someone a moron is a personal attack. Accusing them of molesting squirrels is a BLP violation. Resolute 14:29, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
I have a sligthly different take. BLP is about subjects of articles in WP. WP:NPA is about editors. Calling the subject of an article a moron is a BLP issue. Calling another (non notable) editor a moron is a NPA issue. --cyclopiaspeak! 15:12, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Agreed. BLP is about articles. Most of the policies concerning article content do not apply to the content of talk pages. Barnabypage (talk) 15:33, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
I stand corrected on my above comment; an erroneous assumption. BLP does indeed apply to talk as well as article space. However, as many others have said, for a comment in talk to violate BLP it has to be of a factual nature, directed at an identifiable "real person", and quite damning (not just "you made a spelling error in the article", even if that's untrue). The vast majority of insults and criticisms in talk pages don't meet these criteria.
Whether BLP should apply to talk pages is another matter. I'd suggest that there are good reasons for distinguishing between talk and article. Barnabypage (talk) 09:38, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
I have a slightly different take also. There is, in my opinion, a two-part threshold that must be crossed for a personal attack to be a BLP violation. First, the person must be an identifiable living person (who could be the subject of a biography). That is, the editor must post under their true name, or their true name must be available, e.g., on their user page. (Identifying the true name of a pseudonymous registered editor, of course, is a different policy violation, outing, which usually calls for a block or a ban.) Second, the attack must be a statement about the person of a factual nature, not merely a standard insult. To be precise, in my opinion, saying that an editor whose true name is known is a moron is a personal attack, but saying that an editor whose true name is known has an IQ of 65 is a BLP violation. (Notice that the first statement can be parsed to be equivalent to the second statement, but it can also be parsed as a mere gross insult.) Any personal attack on a pseudonymous editor, no matter how extreme, is not a BLP violation, because the pseudonymous editor is not an identifiable living person. That is my opinion. It's only a BLP violation if the actual person is known. Robert McClenon (talk) 15:20, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree with all the above statements, I think that all four of us have the same broad opinion, just wording it differently and perhaps some specific thresholds are at different parts of the spectrum but not at opposite ends. I don't see anyone agreeing as far as- those comments stating a personal attack is a BLP violation are correct. I have read the entirety of WP:BLP and have found the sentences that may be causing the most confusion as far as applying the policy to talk pages, and thereby confusing people to think ANYTHING said about a person who happens to be living on a talk page is a violation. It would be a shame if this mis-idea gains traction and editors, who become admins, then start sanctioning and blocking because of "BLP issue". A BLP violation is a serious charge with serious consequences with little leeway, and branding someone a BLP violator is a bigger stigma than a "civility violator". Unfortunately perhaps. I think we should explore the specific wordings of the policy and perhaps clean it up.Camelbinky (talk) 15:56, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
In general WP:CRYBLP is a huge problem in many discussions. Agree this should be clarified. --cyclopiaspeak! 16:06, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
This is the section whose wording should be changed-
Policy shortcut: WP:BLPTALK

Contentious material about living persons that is unsourced or poorly sourced and not related to making content choices, should be removed, deleted, or oversighted, as appropriate. When seeking advice about whether to publish something about a living person, be careful not to post so much information on the talk page that the inquiry becomes moot. The same principle applies to problematic images. Questionable claims already discussed can be removed with a reference to the previous discussion.

The BLP policy also applies to user and user talk pages. The single exception is that users may make any claim they wish about themselves in their user space, so long as they are not engaged in impersonation, and subject to What Wikipedia is not, though minors are discouraged from disclosing identifying personal information on their userpages; for more information, see here.[8] Although this policy applies to posts about Wikipedians in project space, some leeway is permitted to allow the handling of administrative issues by the community, but administrators may delete such material if it rises to the level of defamation, or if it constitutes a violation of No personal attacks. Camelbinky (talk) 16:28, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

Making a factual statement about another editor, that casts them in a negative light, and is unsourced, is probably a BLP violation whether you can identify their offline identity or not. A pseudonymous identity is vulnerable to damage, and some care about the reputation of that identity as much as their offline identity. That said, it is important to be careful to limit the reach of BLP to factual statements, not expressions of opinion. If I call someone a moron, it is not reasonable to think that I am alleging they meat the classical, disused, definition of a moron; instead, it should be read as a regular insult of someone's intelligence, and to the extent it is actionable, it would be a question of WP:NPA. Even accusing someone of "molesting squirrels" is probably a NPA violation, as in most circumstances, no one is going to think your accusing them of actually molesting squirrels, but are instead just insulting them. For an attack against an editor to be a BLP violation, its attack needs to be something a reasonable person would think is a factual claim. Monty845 16:40, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Well, I did use the "classical, disused" definition of a moron above, but with the notation that it would not normally be parsed that way. Robert McClenon (talk) 19:50, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
This makes sense as well. I agree that something like "Well, I've found your personal details and I know you are a sexual offender." is beyond a simple NPA. I am unsure however it makes a case for BLP. BLP is about getting things right when dealing with article subjects. Such defamation of other editors strikes me as extremly serious, but I think that the policies and avenues to fix it are different from the ones indicated by BLP. It adds another problem -that of editors having the right to work in a non-threatening environment- to that of being defamed on the Internet. It is kind of both and kind of neither.--cyclopiaspeak! 16:47, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Even so, most complaints about BLP are far from that sort. If there was an established protocol we could ditinguish the libel from the wolf-crying. Konveyor Belt express your horror at my edits 17:09, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
The essay WP:CRYBLP exists, if we could take key segments of that essay and incorporate it into the section of BLP at WP:BLPTALK I think that would be a good step towards that protocol that User:Konveyor_Belt is talking about. Keeping the true libel away from the wolf-crying of those that try to derail a discussion by labeling the other side "BLP violators".Camelbinky (talk) 19:03, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
FWIW the legal term for insults "not intended to be taken literally or believed, or likely to cause real damage to a reputation" is "mere vulgar abuse"; I mention it as possibly useful shorthand in these discussions. It's briefly addressed in the Defamation article. Herostratus (talk) 19:57, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Thank you. In short, calling someone a moron is mere vulgar abuse, but stating that someone has an IQ of 65 is defamation (for which truth is a defense), because the former claim is not likely to be taken at its "classical, disused" meaning, but the latter claim is intended to be taken as a clinical statement. Robert McClenon (talk) 20:31, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

BLP only refers to article space

The policy on biographies of living persons does not state that it applies to user space or user talk space. It refers to articles. It reasonably can be assumed to apply to draft articles, either in Articles for Creation or as subpages in user space that are capable of being moved into article space. As such, it is my reading that it doesn't apply to personal attacks on pseudonymous editors. It can reasonably be interpreted as applying to personal attacks on editors whose true names are known, but only if the attacks involve factual allegations. As noted above, "mere vulgar abuse" is not defamatory. It is forbidden in Wikipedia, but does not justify use of the BLP trump card, and can be dealt with under the rule against personal attacks and the policy requiring civility. That is my interpretation, after rereading WP:BLP. I will be opening an RFC requesting clarification. Robert McClenon (talk) 22:09, 3 October 2013 (UTC)

While you're at it, does it go the other way - that is, does WP:NPA rule out personal attacks on all living people, or is it just editors? StAnselm (talk) 22:29, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
I think that it is clear that WP:NPA has to do with personal attacks on editors and is intended to support civility. It does not have to do with article subjects. Untrue or unverifiable information about living persons in articles (not necessarily biographies) violates BLP. Personal attacks in articles that are "mere vulgar abuse" are probably vandalism. Since BLP violations and vandalism both trump WP:3RR, that is something of a distinction without a difference. Robert McClenon (talk) 22:46, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Actually, Robert McClenon, WP:BLP explicitly says that it applies beyond article space: BLP applies to all material about living persons anywhere on Wikipedia, including talk pages, edit summaries, user pages, images, categories and article titles. See Wikipedia:BLP#Non-article_space. --cyclopiaspeak! 23:08, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
Okay. I have opened an RFC at WT:BLP to clarify issues about applicability to named editors and pseudonymous editors. Robert McClenon (talk) 23:17, 3 October 2013 (UTC)
There is an entire section of WP:BLP with the shortcut WP:BLPTALK that says it specifically applies to talk pages and everything, I copy/pasted the relevant section... some seem to have skipped that part... if it applied only to article space I wouldn't have started this...Camelbinky (talk) 00:21, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
  • We should be most concerned about authoritative statements, not trivial namecalling. For example, see the block notice at the top of User_talk:Akemi_Mokoto, which strikes me as an unreasonable way to present what appears to be a page under a person's name. (I mentioned this at ANI a year back, but no one was going for it) There is a case to be made for generally sanitizing the appearance of pages of all blocked users, since scarcely any of them have been convicted beyond reasonable doubt, nor would there be BLP-grade sourcing for it. But until such official statements by admins are dealt with properly, who should chase down BLP violations by random users on a contentious talk page arguing over some dispute? A fish rots from the head down! Wnt (talk) 00:30, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
      • For the record, Wnt is correct that that is an absolutely horrible block notice, although it was standard for the time that it was activated. I have cleaned up that page. Risker (talk) 04:43, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
  • This discussion should be moved to WT:BLP, the policy being discussed. And yes, BLP applies to every page on the project. Risker (talk) 03:10, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
BLP does not apply if I say Risker is a big fat idiot for thinking this discussion should be moved to WT:BLP. Sorry, Risker, but you're wrong about the scope of BLP, as the title suggests, it is about BIOGRAPHIES, and does not apply to one editor talking about another editor.Camelbinky (talk) 04:01, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree here, WP:BLP and WP:NPA while similar are not the same things. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 04:13, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
I blame the schools for this binary thinking. Personal attacks are BLP violations directed at editors (or sometimes groups of editors). If you had said the same thing about Tom Green, even on this page, it would be a BLP violation. If you had said the same thing about your next door neighbour who doesn't even know how to spell "Wikipedia", it would be a BLP violation. It does not matter what page the BLP violation is on, it is still a BLP violation. I've seen plenty of personal attacks directed at other editors in the edit summaries of biographical articles. BLP applies to personal or biographical information or opinion about a living person. WP:NPA, which is an even older policy, is a special case of BLP. Risker (talk) 04:33, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
That is the thing though, even if the statement had not been an example, it is unlikely anyone would revert it NPA when directed at another editor, let alone warn/block. If directed at a living person who was a non-editor, it would very likely be reverted as a BLP violation and/or generated a warning. That isn't the result you would expect if we generally applied BLP to comments about other editors. Monty845 05:15, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I don't really see a binary "Yes, an attack on an editor is always a BLP violation" or "No, it never could be." If I call you stupid or tell you to go fuck yourself, that's a personal attack (and I still shouldn't be doing it regardless), but it's not defamatory or an invasion of privacy. On the other hand, if I claim I've found that another editor committed a serious crime and was released from jail for it recently, that is a BLP violation, either as defamation (if it's not true) or as exposure of non-public information (if it is true). In my experience with what happens in practice, most personal attacks are just namecalling and nastiness when a discussion gets heated, but do not rise to the level of a BLP problem. No one is going to believe that the other editor literally has their head up their ass. Seraphimblade Talk to me 06:51, 4 October 2013 (UTC)
The RfC on the WT:BLP has been closed until we come with a conclusion and consensus here. With the exception Risker we all seem to be pretty much on the same page that BLP and NPA are two separate policies and that BLP is about people who are likely to have an article or be in an article and NPA is about editors.Camelbinky (talk) 15:00, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree that they are separate issues - on the whole. There can be overlap, but normally the BLP vio will be in an article, and the PA will be on a talk page (or somewhere like this). BLP is for people that aren't here, NPA is for people that are. BLP is about a person, PA is to a person. Peridon (talk) 20:43, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
If no one objects, I would like to start a new thread at WT:BLP to announce that the page will be changed to reflect consensus here with a statement along the lines of "BLP applies to comments that are about the subjects of our articles, for comments of a insulting or defamatory manner please see [[WP:NPA] and the relevant places to seek help if the issue escalates, such as WP:ANI." That's a very very rough approximation of wording. Seeking more input. Will move the discussion to WT:BLP in 48 hours if no objection.Camelbinky (talk) 21:34, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
No objection here, hence the B in BLP (Biography) referring to article space. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 21:37, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Risker will tell you that if I say this the following statement anywhere on Wikipedia, it's a BLP violation: "[insert living celebrity's name here] is a giant corksoaking sonofbitch who smokes crack daily" ES&L 21:46, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
If you make wine at home, you have to soak corks or they won't seal the bottles properly... 8-) Peridon (talk) 21:51, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
Do you also tuck socks into the drawer? LOL ES&L 21:57, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
BLP stands for Biography of living persons, if an editor made a statement like that it would be reverted as vandalism and/or disruptive editing. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 22:37, 5 October 2013 (UTC)
And then it would be immediately restored by someone with an edit summary of "WP:NOTCENSORED". Kaldari (talk) 19:27, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

Although WP:BLP says that it applies to talk pages, it obviously can't apply in the same way. If it did, and we followed it to the letter, I couldn't congratulate an editor on making a very good point without providing a reliable source to show that it really was a very good point. I also couldn't point out an error in a source without similarly proving a citation to a further source that had commented on the error. So, although policy suggests that personal attacks can also be BLP violations, it would be practically insane to insist on applying BLP as opposed to NPA. Anyone who does insist on that it welcome, however, to have this comment revdeleted while I go searching for reliable sources that describe them as "practically insane". Formerip (talk) 00:30, 6 October 2013 (UTC)

Since no one has objected and we all still seem to be on the same page regarding this difference between BLP and NPA, I will start a thread on WT:BLP stating the change will be occurring and asking for comments on exact wording. I hope all involved here follow the discussion and comment over there on the wording, as this is the stage where those who like to see pages stay static often show up with "there's no problem to fix, the wording has been this way for x years".Camelbinky (talk) 19:10, 7 October 2013 (UTC)
Despite the name of this village pump and the fact this is a broader better forum, and we had consensus to do a change the conversation to actually put in a wording change has been blocked by an editor who would rather not acknowledge that we have shown here that there is a problem. I just love how many times noticeboards will say "hey, this is a problem we keep seeing, let's change policy" and it goes nowhere because policy stalking editors who claim there is no problem and the wording of policies must stay static. So sad those editors are allowed to bully.Camelbinky (talk) 19:22, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Moral rights

I was surprised to discover that Wikipedia has no policy (or even a guideline) telling editors to respect the moral rights of authors and artists. This is particularly surprising in light of the fact that many countries legally recognize moral rights, and violations of such rights could expose Wikipedia to litigation. Not that there's an epidemic of moral rights violations going on, but it is something that we should at least put in writing somewhere. I have therefore created an essay, Wikipedia:Moral rights (initially re-using content from Wikipedia:Close paraphrasing#Moral rights, and expanding it to cover visual works), which I would propose to bump up to guideline status in fairly short order. Cheers! bd2412 T 20:41, 8 October 2013 (UTC)

Well, your suggestion of some author saying "Use my janky typo-riddled name or I'll sue you" was worth a laugh, at least. Anyway, I don't see this essay going anywhere quickly, it's basically a duplication of other rules. --erachima talk 21:10, 8 October 2013 (UTC)
It's still the law. bd2412 T 21:14, 8 October 2013 (UTC)
Actually, let me expand on that a bit. First, I'm sure that the people running the Toronto Eaton Centre thought that it "was worth a laugh" when Michael Snow told them that he would sue them if they didn't take the ribbons off of the swan statues that he has sold to them. So much for the worth of a laugh. Second, if this is "a duplication of other rules", please point them out to me. I searched for information on Wikipedia's recognition of moral rights (which, despite the name, are legal rights), and found nothing but the paragraph on close paraphrasing. bd2412 T 22:09, 8 October 2013 (UTC)
Policy has been that since the servers are in the United States, specifically the state of Florida, Wikipedia follows the law of the US & the state of Florida. For better or worse. Now it has been said in specific cases (such as copyright in countries that are not signatories of the relevant berne treaties) Wikipedia will attempt to respect the laws of those countries because it is the right thing to do, not because it's law Wikipedia must follow. I expect moral rights will be observed best we can on that basis, not because they are recognized rights in the rest of the world. -- llywrch (talk) 16:53, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
As an attorney, I can assure you that the location of Wikipedia's servers is irrelevant to courts enforcing the laws of jurisdictions where Wikipedia can be accessed. Wikipedia routinely defends itself from lawsuits filed in a multitude of jurisdictions (like this one). As it happens, Wikipedia has servers in several locations, also including Virginia and the Netherlands. The Foundation offices are located in San Francisco, where the California Art Preservation Act is applicable; the Visual Artists Rights Act is in effect throughout the United States. Wikipedia should respect moral rights because it is the right thing to do,and because it reduces the risk of Wikimedia having to expend resources dealing with artists whose rights have not been observed. bd2412 T 18:09, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
While I understand that this is a separate issue from copyright, it is certainly related. Instead of adding yet another policy or guideline, how about expanding Wikipedia:Copyrights#Contributors' rights and obligations? VQuakr (talk) 23:17, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
@BD2412: Can you be a bit more specific about what you would like to see. 'Moral rights' cover a wide gamut, some of which are appropriate for freely licensed work and some of which may not be. For example, if an author wants the right of attribution, all they have to do is choose the appropriate license. If the author wants to protect their work from substantial modification, however, they probably should not upload it to Wikipedia as all of our licenses waive that right. In most cases the issue of moral rights should be addressed in the license text, not in overarching Wikipedia policies, IMO. Kaldari (talk) 19:41, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
This is not about works uploaded to Wikipedia by the original artist. For example, our images of The Red Ceiling and Forest Idyl were not uploaded by William Eggleston and Albin Polasek, respectively. Although Wikipedia would successfully be able to assert fair use with respect to those images, as they are used to illustrate articles about the works, it would still be a violation of the moral rights of the artists for us to publish versions where someone had changed the red ceiling to a blue ceiling in the photograph, or put a party hat on the sculpture. It would similarly be a moral rights violation to title the article on the sculpture "Forest Idle", even if some reliable sources had misspelled it that way. bd2412 T 20:54, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
Absent instruction from foundation legal that we need to do something about this, I for one see no reason to. If there are specific examples of us abusing the "moral rights" of someone, lets see them, and consider how to address them, but no general policies. Monty845 03:27, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
I suppose, then, that this will remain an essay. Cheers! bd2412 T 14:34, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

Is there a guideline on this?

In WP:No original research/noticeboard#Dongan Charter it has been mentioned by User:Kitchen Knife that Wikipedia needs a consistent usage of the term "Western Hemisphere". While that is the best place to continue the disagreement about whether xy place is the oldest in the Western Hemisphere based on usage in sources, this thread here is for the following discussion- what is Wikipedia's consensus on usage of "Western Hemisphere" when sources use this term "incorrectly" as Kitchen Knife says when Western Hemisphere is most likely meant to mean the Americas. At the thread mentioned above there are many sources that use Western Hemisphere in talking about the "oldest xy" (including the Harvard Gazette) while there are older xy's in England; if Wikipedia decides the Western Hemisphere is anything west of the Prime Meridian at Greenwich, UK then that makes every single one of those sources incorrect and we cant use them in Wikipedia.Camelbinky (talk) 15:23, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

Western Hemisphere? ES&L 15:40, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
The article itself is conflicted between geographical and political usage. Which is causing this debate in the first place. I am of the political definition and Kitchen Knife is going by the geographical definition. If Wikipedia goes by the geographical definition then Massachusetts Supreme Court must remove mention that it is the oldest continuous appellate court in the Western Hemisphere even though the source is otherwise reliable and there is no source that exists that says another appellate court is the true oldest; simply based on our definition of Western Hemisphere we'd have to declare any reliable source that declares something to be the "oldest" of the Western Hemisphere incorrect in that instance because none of them take into account western UK and France, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, Iceland, and western Africa.Camelbinky (talk) 15:58, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
You can point out the ambiguity by saying "it has been claimed that is the olderst in the Western Hemisphere, how ever this term has been used to mean the the Americas or Areas West of the Prime Meridian" or just omit the claim as its exact meaning is not verifiable.--Kitchen Knife (talk) 16:17, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
That would be original research and not consistent with what are in the sources. Your knowledge of how Wikipedia policy is written is severely lacking, I suggest you bone up on some policies.Camelbinky (talk) 19:18, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
As is the case with many phrases the meaning of "Western Hemisphere" depends on context. We deal with such minor ambiguity all the time for many phrases without creating a specific Wikipedia-approved meaning for the phrase. The best way to go about this in article content is to avoid the phrase and to use alternative unambiguous language, such as "in the Americas" or "west of the prime meridian". It is usually obvious which sense is meant by any particular source, and it is far from being original research in the sense originally meant by the policy (i.e. that Wikipedia is not a place to publish your theory of everything that has been rejected by Nature) to interpret sources in a common-sense way. Phil Bridger (talk) 21:36, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
{{definition}} is your friend. VanIsaacWS Vexcontribs 23:23, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

Off-wiki campaign and platform for off-wiki canvassing

I find this kinda troubling. Am I wrong that this brushes up against, and maybe crosses, a policy boundary? David in DC (talk) 15:50, 6 October 2013 (UTC)

What policy would that be? This seems to be, essentially, an off-wiki WikiProject – and from a cursory glance at some of their before/after links (eg. David Gorski before/after), they seem to be doing good work. I don't see any canvassing going on, nor does there seem to be any agenda besides improving Wikipedia's coverage of certain topics. If there's a policy forbidding that, there shouldn't be. DoctorKubla (talk) 18:37, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree that this comes close to the line. That kind of thing should normally be organised as an on-wiki project so it can be policed on-wiki if there are any problems. It reminds me of two things: The case of the Eastern European mailing list, and an attempt years ago to create a similar (to EEML) clandestine 'skeptic' organisation.
I have not seen any evidence that these particular people are engaging in anything inappropriate, but I still think this is not OK. I have often seen 'skeptics' block vote to the detriment of NPOV. (Note that I am not complaining about removing or balancing pseudoscientific POV. I am complaining about hyperbole, about adding undue weight to pseudoscience aspects in topics such as ghost, about turning underlying definitions of pseudoscience-related topics into nonsense by adding "supposedly", and similar anti-encyclopedic activities.) This blog could well be a front and advertising vehicle for an EEML-like instrument coordinating this.
A Wikipedia group of "guerrilla skeptics" organised off-wiki is no more acceptable than a group of "guerrilla scientologists" or "guerrilla parapsychologists" would be. Hans Adler 14:19, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
Just calling themselves a "guerrilla" group seems ominous. From the World Webnet Online Dictionary at Princeton: "guerrilla: a member of an irregular armed force that fights a stronger force by sabotage and harassment". —Anne Delong (talk) 15:23, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
Further reading on this topic:
Good find. At first I didn't realise how old that thread in ANI archive 717 is and was puzzled to see a comment by myself from August (2011!) that I can't remember. It appears I saw that blog in a more positive light at the time. Maybe I have become more cynical in the meantime.
I don't consider the term "guerrilla" ominous in this context at all. The word has acquired a wider meaning recently in terms such as guerrilla marketing. Hans Adler 19:56, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I'm unclear on what is being asked for here. This is hardly the only WP skeptic/critic site out there and obviously we have no control over its activities. If individual members of this group engage in any sort of problematic behavior they can be dealt with like anyone else. If not, then there's no problem. Beeblebrox (talk) 20:32, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Disambiguation#Proposal for a new rule for media adaptations and multimedia franchises

Greetings! I have initiated a discussion proposing new rules for the treatment of pages that list adaptations, remakes, or other installments of a single multimedia franchise. Please note that this proposal is not intended to delineate how franchise articles themselves should be put together, but merely serves to establish that a list of media within a franchise is not ambiguous (as the topics are related), and should not be presented as a disambiguation page. Cheers! bd2412 T 16:22, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

Bright line rule

As a result of the current PR-sockpuppet scandal and related discussions I have proposed that Jimbo Wale's "Bright line rule" be officially made part of Wikipedia policy at WP:NOT Please see Wikipedia talk:What Wikipedia is not#Bright line rule for my discussion of the change I made at WP:NOT. (My proposed change was reverted twice within two minutes, so I'm not sure the change will still be there). Smallbones(smalltalk) 00:10, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

The only way your proposed change could have been reverted twice in two minutes is if you edit-warred to reinstate it after it was reverted the first time. Please don't do that. Phil Bridger (talk) 08:22, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

Discussion about talk page access during blocks

You may perhaps be interested in the discussion at Wikipedia talk:Blocking policy#Proper use of talk page access when blocked. --Tryptofish (talk) 22:20, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

RfC:"Should organisations be included in templates such as Islamophobia, Racism and anti-Semitism"

Closing per request at WP:ANRFC. There was clear division on this issue. Editors who supported the idea of including orgs in relevant templates variously stated stipulations that revolve around the same concept: 1) Such classification must be not be disputed among reliable sources, 2) classification must come from a wide range of reliable sources rather than a few, and 3) additions should be only be done rarely and for cases that are the most obvious. There are some nuances between these stipulations, but they are all reiterating what we strive for in providing verifiability and in terms of the restrictions, avoiding giving undue weight to contentious claims.

Editors who opposed inclusion argued that 1) The prior RfC on categories had a clear consensus and that implementing a new policy on templates would cause inconsistency, 2) allowing orgs to be included would result in edit-warring and much wasted time, and 3) there is considerable concern over BLP-related infractions if any allowance was made for inclusion of organizations. That there was a prior RfC is not a particularly compelling reason to object as it occurred 2-1/2 years ago, and knowing that consensus can change, even on related topics. Likelihood of edit-warring, while certainly a realistic and practical concern, is also not compelling considering that we do not remove controversial articles or prevent their creation just because they may spark editors to violate policies, because we have systems to deal with those violations.

The policy, WP:BLPGROUP, is clearly applicable here, and suggests that small groups are more likely to be the subject of BLP-related violations in regard to contentious claims like accusations of [insert discrimination variety here]. However:

When in doubt, make sure you are using high-quality sources.

Which suggests that it is possible for small groups to also be considered if many high-quality sources unambiguously agree on the nature of the group, which as mentioned in this RfC, is likely to be rare.

Given the above, I am inclined to conclude that consensus was to allow inclusion of groups in relevant templates under the restrictions already based in policy:

1) high-quality sources must be unambiguous and there can be no serious dispute in classifying the group's activity in regards to the template, and
2) that, of course, WP:BLPGROUP be strictly followed with regard to classifying small groups under such templates.
It is advised that any group additions to these templates undergo some discussion before inclusion to allow editors to conclude whether template inclusion is appropriate under these conditions. I, JethroBT drop me a line 19:03, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

This stems from a discussion at WP:NPOVN#Branding individuals as bigots via Templates - relevant discussions are also at WP:NPOVN#Politically Incorrect (blog) and Template talk:Islamophobia. The templates being discussed are Template:Islamophobia, Template:Racism topics and Template:Antisemitism. Dougweller (talk) 16:12, 8 September 2013 (UTC)

  • Support - provided that the organizations have been widely described in independent reliable sources as having some form of "racism" as per those templates and other related topics as one of its central, determining, defining characteristics. I would also support it if, for whatever reason, multiple independent reliable sources were to describe the activities in which the group engages as regularly showing some characteristic which would be described as "racist". This would presumably include the Christian Identity movement as well. I honestly don't know about Zionism, but I would assume that in cases where there is a significant number of groups, as there are with that topic, they might be included in a specific template for that topic, with perhaps the main topic being included in one of the "overtly" race-related templates, like those described above. John Carter (talk) 17:11, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
Comment: And what would you do if multiple other independent reliable sources describe the activities in which the group engages as regularly showing some characteristic which are not consistent with "racism"? Exactly this problem exists not infrequently in the case of "Islamophobia" which has been used by reliable, yet left-wing or far-left sources as a WP:label. This is one blog where reliable sources can be found for both positions. Gun Powder Ma (talk) 20:08, 9 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. But it must in all cases be clear from sources that the racism etc in question forms a significant part of the identity/character of the organisation in question. Formerip (talk) 17:18, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Conditional Support The criteria for inclusion need to be strict, stricter then they appear to be now. The organization must either be overt about the characteristic, or it must be widely, or even near universally supported by reliable sources. As an example, David_Horowitz_Freedom_Center#Criticism which, appears to have gotten the {{Islamophobia}} on the basis of the claims of one group, who was attacking the subject, is unacceptable. The quoted material doesn't even label them as Islamophobic, merely accusing them of having some of the characteristics. Monty845 17:21, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Yes, sometimes. I've read the linked discussions, and it's quite an interesting question. I see that, for example, Template:Antisemitism has a section containing organizations that oppose antisemitism, and there clearly is nothing wrong with that. To some extent, it is a question of sourcing, as other editors just said. It is essential to have a preponderance of mainstream sources identifying an organization as such, and making it a central (rather than incidental) feature of the organization, in order to include it in a template as being islamophobic, racist, or antisemitic, but I think that it is reasonable to do so under such situations. It's unreliable to depend on the organizations' self-descriptions, but a preponderance of independent sources may be considered reliable here. It's also a matter of how the organization is listed in a template, because the sub-header under which the link is placed should not be misleading. But I do not think that we run afoul of BLP-related policies by including organizations this way, so long as there is adequate sourcing to back it up. --Tryptofish (talk) 17:23, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Support with some caution. For instance it would be pointless to add the islamophobia template to Westboro Baptist Church as they hate pretty much everything. But for an organisation where islamophobia is a major part of their activity and reason for existence like Stop Islamization of America it certainly is useful. // Liftarn (talk)
  • Oppose - The point of a template is to link readers to articles on related topics. The topics linked in the templates under discussion relate to "Islamiphobia" and "Racism".... this is a distinct topic area from "Islamiphobes" or "Racists". Blueboar (talk) 19:36, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
    Would you then, for example, remove the section of the antisemitism template that lists organizations that oppose antisemitism? --Tryptofish (talk) 19:42, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
  • It would be strange to omit Ku Klux Klan from a list of important subjects related to {{Racism}}. That said, I think it would be preferable in most cases to relegate organizations to lists like a List of anti-racist organizations. WhatamIdoing (talk) 22:31, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
There is one option, which I have become kind of a boringly repetitive advocate of in other areas lately, which probably could be considered. There are at least two fairly highly regarded reference works on the topic, one on the broad topic of race and racism, and another on racism specifically in the United States. I can, if people want, get together lists of the titles of articles and named sub-articles from those sources, and add them, well, somewhere. This is not a topic I myself know at all well, but I do think that it might make sense to at least include any groups which get very long articles, say two pages or so?, in those reference works, as they are pretty clearly significant subjects regarding that topic if they receive that much attention in relevant reference works. I acknowledge up front that there is an almost certain bias toward racism in the context of the US and western Europe in those sources, but at the same time I think that the information might be useful and, at least for the second named source, might be a reasonable indicator for what might be included in an template on racism in the US, if one were to be created or determined useful. John Carter (talk) 22:37, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Strongly Oppose 1) Back in Feb 2011, Roscelese initiated a discussion concerning people and organization in bias categories and whether there could be a unified approach:Wikipedia:Categories_for_discussion/Log/2011_February_9#Bias_categories. The result was: “Consensus for a unified approach to these categories; most support to ban individuals & organisations.” I argue that templates, like categories, are groupings and should be treated the same. The concerns for adding individuals and organizations to categories are the same concerns we should have for templates. Jason from nyc (talk) 23:18, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
2) Sources are often mixed with respect to an individual or organization. In the article we can read the debate and understand the degree to which an individual/organization is biased. I've seen some additions to the template based on the fact that a minority sees the organization as bias. This creates unlimited debates and edit wars. Jason from nyc (talk) 23:18, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
3) Even when all sources point to bias, the quality of the sources are often limited. We may not have a broad spectrum of source from across the political spectrum in part because the individual/organization may be covered only in certain venues. As a result the categorization turns out to be highly partisan. At worse case we may inadvertently promote witch hunts. Jason from nyc (talk) 23:18, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
4) Given that wikipedia is understaffed, the amount of time and effort devoted to contentious debates over adding or removing individuals/organizations distracts us from more important matters. The articles have the full story of what sources say and how they talk about individual/organizations. Templates can be distracting since they require a digital non-nuanced result. Jason from nyc (talk) 23:18, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
5) Organizations reflect the leadership which in some cases can be an individual. Thus, they allow a loophole in applying BLP criteria. I tried to argue that some of these articles are may be POV forks (for example: Talk:Stop_Islamization_of_America#Do_we_need_this_article.3F.) Jason from nyc (talk) 23:18, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
6) The prohibition against individuals and organizations in bias categories results in the same disclaimer at the head of each category. See for example, Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish, Islamic, and Arabic bias categories. This has worked smoothly with few complaints when individuals and organizations are removed. I highly recommend we apply the same standards to templates. Jason from nyc (talk) 23:18, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. We have a community consensus since 2011 that individuals and organizations should not be included in bias categories. It would be inconsistent with this practice to do otherwise with bias templates. I don't see any justification for establishing a separate lex templatensis which treats bias templates differently from bias categories. Where is the difference? Besides, in case of the Islamophobia template (the category notably has already been deleted for being biased itself) and others, the inclusion criteria for organizations are pretty much undefined, resulting in arbitrary classifications. In one particular example, reliable sources can be cited both for and against inclusion of the template. It became quickly apparent that the guidelines actually do not specify at what point an inclusion is warranted and this fundamental problem remains. Gun Powder Ma (talk) 19:43, 9 September 2013 (UTC)
If you are going to come up with arguments perhaps you could try to avoid what you know isn't true. I have followed the discussion about PI and there have been no reliable sources saying the blog isn't islamophobic and they self-identify as islamophobes. And as you have read on the talk page the inclusion criteria is very straightforward and based on WP:V and WP:RS. // Liftarn (talk)
  • Oppose: It's against the basic guidelines of a template's structure, strictly followed (at least) a couple of years now. General & widely used terms can't include such categories. It will be more than enough if we include them in lists of relevant organizations, as pointed above.Alexikoua (talk) 15:38, 10 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. WP:BLPCAT refers to some aspects of Wikipedia not carrying "disclaimers or modifiers". These would include "templates". Therefore organizations should not "be included in templates such as Islamophobia, Racism and anti-Semitism". Bus stop (talk) 16:20, 10 September 2013 (UTC)
    • Comment - When did BLP apply to organisations? Dougweller (talk) 18:01, 10 September 2013 (UTC)
My fault. I wasn't clear. I meant to say that templates don't carry "disclaimers or modifiers". You are of course right that BLP doesn't apply here. But a similar principle may apply here as well. We can't very well explain the nuances by which an organization might carry these negative traits; "disclaimers and modifiers" are not possible in templates. Bus stop (talk) 18:24, 10 September 2013 (UTC)
I've been wondering about the same question as this discussion has gone along. I think the answer is contained in WP:BLPGROUP. My take on it is that the last sentence there is very relevant here: it's very important that inclusion in a template be well-sourced. That doesn't mean that BLP is violated automatically by including an organization in a template, but it does mean that organizations can only be included if there is very solid sourcing for including them. --Tryptofish (talk) 18:20, 10 September 2013 (UTC)
Ok, so it's just normal WP:V and WP:RS then. Just as I said above. // Liftarn (talk)
Let's read it more closely. "A harmful statement about a small group or organization comes closer to being a BLP problem than a similar statement about a larger group; and when the group is very small, it may be impossible to draw a distinction between the group and the individuals that make up the group." Thus, the example in my point #5, SION is virtually Pamela Geller and it should be subject to BLP. Many of these groups are small. Jason from nyc (talk) 19:17, 11 September 2013 (UTC)
Fine, that's covered by BLP. A blanket ban on groups would keep the KKK out of a racism template. Dougweller (talk) 20:50, 11 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment This may be the silliest discussion in the history of Wikipedia. None of these templates should exist because they are POV. What Wiki police is going to determine which articles fit the criteria? Are there also templates for Homophobia, Misogyny, Crazy Wikipedia Editors (excuse me, Developmentally challenged) USchick (talk) 20:52, 10 September 2013 (UTC)
I nominated all 3 of these for deletion. Feel free to discuss it there. USchick (talk) 22:41, 10 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Sometimes, but rarely. There will be some obvious cases, such as including the article on the Third International on the template for Communism. I don;t really see it as susceptible to a blanket rule. 'DGG (at NYPL) (talk) 18:19, 16 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. As the three templates currently stand, we have organizations included on very flimsy evidence (e.g. David Horowitz Freedom Center) as well as what appears to be cherry picking of organizations. It's not clear to me how the list on Template:Racism topics came to be selected. The simplest solution is to remove all links to organizations, although I can see how Ku Klux Klan "deserves" to be on the template. StAnselm (talk) 11:53, 18 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Support, but rarely - Per DGG. There are sometimes when it would just seem obviously appropriate. I'd suggest this is particularly true in cases where an organization self identifies as racist. NickCT (talk) 14:30, 20 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Jason and GPM. It is not Wikipedia's job to choose which organizations are anti-semitic/islamophobic enough to warrant their inclusion in a template, a recipe for endless edit wars and debate as already shown.--Loomspicker (talk) 18:52, 22 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Question. Do those editors who oppose also feel that we should omit those organizations that work against racism, etc.? --Tryptofish (talk) 19:11, 22 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Sometimes, but rarely per DGG. If an organization is well-known for espousing an ideology and even claims to do so, then I see nothing wrong with including it on the template. -- King of ♠ 18:32, 24 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Yes, when a defining feature - For organization where sources are consistent on racism etc. being a defining feature/ideology of the organizaton. Not otherwise. --cyclopiaspeak! 19:32, 24 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Support/include. What would be the reason for not including something like Ku Klux Klan? However, the example with communism is not really good. A lot of organizations proudly tell: "yes, we are a communist organization", but probably few to none tell: "we are racists". My very best wishes (talk) 21:50, 24 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Support, but only if the tag of "Racist", "Islamophobic", etc. is not in dispute (i.e. widely supported by reliable sources, no reliable sources stating otherwise), or that the organization itself claims to be racist. 069952497a (U-T-C-E) 17:42, 29 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Strongly Oppose, Organizations are made up of people, who are alive. The VAST majority of those people would not like to be associated with those terms, nor would they use them of themselves. On pages where there are specific people mentioned (For example Don Black (white nationalist) on the Ku Klux Klan page) this is a HUGE WP:BLP issue. ReformedArsenal (talk) 14:28, 1 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support per 069952497a. We should be careful to make such an tendentious claim in a template. There must be very strong evidence that the organization is racist/antisemitic/islamophobic, like a verdict in court or some peer-reviewed scientific publications. Just a news article that judges an organisation as racist/antisemitic/islamophobic shouldn't be enough for an inclusion in such a template. The consequense of this should be, for example, that Jihad Watch wouldn't been included in a template, while the English Defence League would be.Jeff5102 (talk) 11:56, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support' We need to enforce our policies of WP:VERIFY, WP:NPOV and WP:BLP just as we should everywhere, so I can see no justification for excluding organisations. My very best wishes makes the point that there seems to be no reason for including the KKK in a racist template. If the KKK isn't a racist organisation what is? I'm not clear about the problem about Don Black on the KKK page - he's a former member and a former member of the American Nazi Party. Having the template on the KKK page doesn't mean he's a racist or a Nazi today. I've one concern and that is I hope that my wording doesn't affect the outcome - perhaps I should have asked if organisations should be excluded, as the status quo is that they are included. Dougweller (talk) 15:26, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose on difficult balance, not because organisations should enjoy any particular exemption from unfavourable characterisation on Wikipedia, but because it's likely to lead to an amount of edit-warring and disputation quite disproportionate to the value it offers readers or editors. Barnabypage (talk) 15:33, 2 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support for clear cases such as KKK for racism or Nazi Party for anti-semitism. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 05:47, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support, but carefully There must be a clear consensus among reliable sources that an organization is indeed racist, anti-Semitic, etc. However, should such a consensus among reliable sources exist, we should include the KKK under "racism" or the Nazi Party under "anti-Semitism". If the organization would not wish to be so included, well, it shouldn't be that way then. Seraphimblade Talk to me 10:53, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support if there are two reliable sources independent of each other making the connection. Binksternet (talk) 13:18, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Two reliable sources are not enough to establish an allegation of racism, etc., as fact. Claims like this should be made in articles, where sources can be marshaled, notable opposing views aired, historical evolution described (the Catholic Church was certainly against Islam during the Crusades, how and when has it changed?) and consensus formed and recorded on the talk page as needed. Excluding clear cut cases like the KKK from templates does far less harm than the endless POV-pushing that inclusion of organizations in such templates would invite.--agr (talk) 16:01, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
  • oppose Per ArnoldReinhold; again the labeling of organizations that themselves do not promote these labels is problematic. We have already decided by consensus that such organizations are not to be included in categories (see header of Category:Antisemitism), though this is not fully enforced currently. The problem is, we do have some clear cut ones - but while everyone would agree that Nazis were anti-semitic, you can also find lots of reliable sources that claim Mel Gibson is anti-semitic, and the Catholic Church itself has often been anti-semitic in its history. So as to not have edit-warring in the template over which organization is or isn't anti-semitic or islamophobic, I'd suggest we remove all of them (organizations fighting AGAINST antisemitism, etc, could certainly be there OTOH). Besides the KKK or the Nazis, how clear cut is clear cut? There's a line that some orgs are clearly on one side of, but once you move away from those it gets a LOT more grey and fuzzy, and that's where the problem starts. For example, if you read KKK materials, [8], they are fighting for the white race (not fighting against other races). I'm not backing them up on this, I'm just pointing out that KKK, bless their white-hooded souls, might grumble a bit about being placed in the racism template. I suppose it doesn't bother me that much, but if we have to draw a line, where do we draw it?--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 18:43, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support if the reliable sources unambiguously establish as much. If the consensus among reliable sources is that an organization can be described as such, then we do fine in describing that organization as such, whether by categories or by prose in an article. --Atethnekos (DiscussionContributions) 07:58, 7 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Query What happens if there is no consensus? Does that mean that organizations can or can't be listed in templates? Jason from nyc (talk) 02:53, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support for organisations whose principal purpose is to oppose Islam (etc). Can anyone argue that Stop Islamisation of Europe is not in some way anti-Islamic? Similarly the English Defence League was largely formed to counter radical Islam. If there's any reasonable doubt, or the topic isn't central to the organisation's purpose, remove them. --Colapeninsula (talk) 10:52, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

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

Initiative for Mandatory Edit and/or Revert Summary in Articles

I think there's very little argument for maintaining the current status of "optional" edit summary. Anyone who's changing Wikipedia's articles should be obliged to give reasoning, especially for reverting and should have no problem doing so. Optionality not only gives room to disruptive editing and vandalism but elevates such by the absence of any mandatory justification for your action. This way, the amount of unjustified edits and reverts could be reduced significantly.--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 02:18, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

Oppose as the goal is unachievable without unsustainable levels of enforcement. Even if the software requires text to be entered, editors are still going to continue to use opaque edit summaries like "fmt". And the more experienced vandals do use edit summaries so requiring edit summaries won't help with that. Regards, Orange Suede Sofa (talk) 02:27, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
Can't quite follow the argumentation. Even if someone will still "use opaque edit summaries like fmt", it will first off identify him pretty clear as disruptive or vandalistic and some sort of barrier that is implemented will still make him think twice about pulling through. And it's not a very high level of "enforcement", IMHO, too. I don't think it is too much of a demand to give a brief explanation about what you are doing, especially when you are removing work by other people, who have made efforts and spend time into improving articles and someone can simply undo these efforts without any justification - this seems wrong to me.--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 03:03, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Basically per Orange: it wouldn't help, it's rules for rules' sake, don't bloat policy more. --erachima talk 02:43, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
Same applies here, it is not only "rules for rules' sake", it's about separating the sheep from the goats. Anybody who is in the right and does a justified edit has no problems whatsoever to imagine a brief summary in a few seconds, while someone who's obviously doing wrong and makes questionable edits based on POV and disruptiveness will have a harder time. Can't see at all how this will not benefit the whole project...--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 03:03, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
There are two questions to ask when considering a new rule. The first question is, does it solve a problem? The second question is, is it a burden? Your rule doesn't solve a problem --people can just lie in their edit summaries and malicious editors usually do-- but does inconvenience editors who are doing nothing wrong. To put it more philosophically, rules are a necessary evil, and the rule you propose does not improve things enough to justify doing evil. --erachima talk 03:29, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
When you consider it as an inconvenience to think about an explanation for a few seconds and type 10 or 15 letters with your keyboard, then this, honestly, sounds mainly motivated by laziness? How can this be a burden? I can understand that discussion pages don't need edit summaries - but articles? I was about to also type "reverts on discussion pages" and realized how disruptive reverts are in general. Imagine someone would revert your edits in a discussion without explanation - a clear attack on you and your thoughts. This is the evil.

And, tbh, rules are not a necessary evil, especially in Wikipedia, but a means to give the chaos at least some remote order. Reverts are forms of thievery and need to be explained.--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 03:40, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

The page history always exists. Nothing is stolen by vandalism but a couple seconds. Creeping authoritarianism, on the other hand, is much harder to undo, and this proposal is a prime example of it. --erachima talk 03:45, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

To anyone who is thinking about completely opposing, please consider that you can also "vote" for, let's say, mandatory reverts instead of all edits. It can't be that someone can undo another one's input without any justification. This is actually a form of impudence and strongly contradicts universal principles of human coexistence and social behaviour.--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 03:27, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

And one needs to look at the matter in a metaphorical way to really understand the implications:

Let's say there's a book inside a room into which everybody can write something. One person has just done so and the other goes to the book and scratches through everything of that, while the other person is still in the room and observes this. Then the other person is finished scoring out and passes by the one person and is asked "Why did you do this?" but the other person walks out of the room and does not even consider getting out of his way to explain. Don't you think the one person has a right to be given an explanation whatsoever and that this practice is awkward?--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 03:33, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

No, no we do not need to look at this in a metaphorical way. We can look at this in an entirely literal way because you are talking about a thing that actually happens, not a hypothetical. And in that actual event, people look at each other's edits regardless of whether they give summaries or not. --erachima talk 03:42, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
Declare a metaphorical way of looking at things as irrelevant if you feel to do so, but it is actually not a hypothetical point of view, the metaphor of the book in a room is exactly what is happening inside Wikipedia - on a virtual level. People are scratching out other people's contributions without even feeling the need to get out of their way to explain and this surely is not an ethically correct form of interpersonal behaviour or please explain how you can ignore this and still call the procedure legitimate?--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 03:51, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
  • oppose it wont solve any problem and will in fact just mask the problem under edit summaries that appear to be legit. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 03:46, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
I was just thinking the same thing. Disruptive editors who might leave no edit summary at all will instead be encouraged by this to leave a misleading one. In that sense, no edit summary can often (though not always, of course) indicate a questionable edit. DonIago (talk) 03:48, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
Can't follow your argument here, if someone goes into a shop and steals a thing and is asked "What are you doing there?" and needs to find an explanation, he will think twice the next time. If not asked, will do it again. Understand the point?
Not really. We can already tag editors for making changes without leaving edit summaries if we're so inclined. Making it a requirement will result in, from disruptive editors, edit summaries ranging from unhelpful "OMGZZZ!!!" to deliberately misleading "Removing vandalism". DonIago (talk) 04:25, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
Pros
  1. You don't have to look at the diff when you read someone's edit
  2. Vandals or otherwise disruptive editors can be chastised without actually analyzing their edit and seeing what they did wrong
Cons
  1. You think it's bad that a majority of newbies leave when told about guidelines/policies on notability and reliable sourcing? Just wait until you see how many newbies abandon Wikipedia simply because we whined about their lack of edit summaries
  2. People intent on disrupting Wikipedia will simply disrupt and leave a misleading edit summary
  3. Lots of good edits reverted and/or good editors chastised when their actual contributions were completely fine

In summary, it is a nice thought, but any effort at making this mandatory would ultimately be a complete waste of time that will do nothing to fight vandalism and everything to annoy editors old and new. Someguy1221 (talk) 03:50, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

  • Does this go for edits in general or reverts? There's not that much users reverting (chiefly main authors who try to maintain the status quo with all means) And certainly it will fight vandalism as it makes the barriers higher and restrains people from misdoings. At the same moment easier for Admins to spot. There's nothing annoying in writing a few words more as a summary, editors are annoyed by the complicated procedure of quoting and not a thing so easy to achieve like a brief explanation.--
    Those newbies have mainly left because the procedure to quote is just way to complicated for them and not because of a lack of edit summaries. Anybody can think about some word of explanation while the procedure of quoting is simply much to complicated.--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 04:01, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
    But it makes it harder for them and thereby restrain their misdoings.--Commissioner Gregor (talk) 04:01, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

Commissioner Gregor (talk) 04:01, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

Just an observaton, Commissioner Gregor: since you joined Wikipedia, you've been mainly editing in highly controversial topic areas, where it's important for editors to explain what they're doing and why, since every edit is likely to be scrutinised and questioned. However, many of us spend our time in much more obscure corners of the wiki, editing pages that aren't on anybody's watchlist and may not have seen an edit for months or years; in such cases, edit summaries are, yes, still encouraged, but not nearly as necessary as you suggest. Forcing editors to write a summary for every single edit, no matter how minor, may not seem like that much of a hassle, but it is the sort of thing that would niggle away at you. And it's not always as straightforward as you say it is; there have definitely been times when I've performed a complex bit of wiki-formatting, and then struggled to succintly explain exactly what I've done. In short, I think you should wait until you've gained a broader experience of editing on Wikipedia before you re-evaluate the merits of your argument. DoctorKubla (talk) 08:20, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I would oppose this for some of the same reasons already stated but have proposed in the past, and would support having "Prompt me when entering a blank edit summary" ticked by default when a user creates a new account (in Special:Preferences#mw-prefsection-editing). They could always uncheck it, but it would not only teach good practice to new editors, but educate them on the existence of edit summaries, as new users often are not aware of edit summaries at the time they sign up.--Fuhghettaboutit (talk) 12:50, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
    • Support Fuhghettaboutit. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 21:51, 9 October 2013 (UTC)
    • Support - I'm all for encouraging but not requiring editors to use edit summaries, especially new editors who may simply not know any better. DonIago (talk) 13:31, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
On the other hand, the fact that edit summaries are not required, and that most vandals don't use them, means that when a new or IP editor makes a questionable edit but provides an edit summary, we pay more attention to it, and perhaps assume more good faith, than we might if all edits were forced to have them. Having remind defaulted on would mean we loose this for new accounts. It is still probably a net positive to turn it on, but the downside deserves a mention. Monty845 03:33, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I thought that the warning on blank edit summaries was turned on by default? At any rate, I oppose the OP's proposal. Pointless policy wonkery should be avoided. Resolute 13:42, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I would oppose the original proposal as needless rulemaking (yes a rule opposed by the drafter of WP:PI) but support Fuhghettaboutit's suggestion to have the prompt option on by default, and perhaps always on for IP editors. DES (talk) 20:07, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
  • The proposal is counterproductive; you'll get a lot of lost edits due to a higher barrier to entry, and a lot of meaningless edit summaries (".", "asdf", etc). A/B testing the prompt setting on new users might be interesting, though. Andrew Gray (talk) 18:20, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

Sock puppetry

Will multiple user accounts associated to one numerical IP address be suspected as sock puppetry? For example people living in the same household creating different accounts and in the end worked together to edit pages as well as having the same consensus when voting. This might be considered as sock puppetry if not verified. 124.197.123.242 (talk) 05:34, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

If editing unrelated articles, its likely no one would ever know, and is fine anyway. Collaborative editing is trickier. If they are making uncontroversial edits, and just working together to improve an article, that is great. The problem becomes when you start to get into areas of dispute. If they are working together to get a preferred version of a page, or influence a discussion, it starts to look a lot like either socking or WP:MEAT. There is additional information checkusers have access too, but even if the checkuser evidence is inconclusive as to socking, you still run right into the meat issue. It is certainly possible that the edits from two persons, acting independently, who happen to share the same IP, may on occasion intersect, and that is fine, but if they overlap significantly, and their connection isn't revealed until someone files an SPI, it will probably end with blocks. Monty845 05:52, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
It could be meat puppetry or canvassing, if they have each other join in with conflicts to which they would not otherwise be party. (Wow, that's an awkward relative clause) But it is neither technically nor substantively sockpuppeting in any form. VanIsaacWS Vexcontribs 23:37, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

So the conclusion is that it is better for people in the same household not to have multiple individual different accounts? HYH.124 (talk) 07:27, 13 October 2013 (UTC)

No, that's not the conclusion. Different people should have different accounts. As Monty says the only potential problem is if more than one member of a household participates in the same dispute. My advice in those circumstances would be to declare the relationship in the discussion in question. That way nobody will think that you are trying to do anything underhand. Phil Bridger (talk) 08:20, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
If they start editing articles together and supporting each other in discussions, and someone suspects sockpuppetry so a checkuser is done, it will certainly look like sockpuppetry, especially if they all use the same computer. But every person should have their own account. There is nothing inherently wrong with more than 1 person editing from the same place. It only becomes a problem when they start violating WP:MEAT. But that doesn't matter whether they're in the same place or not. But shared accounts are forbidden. The best way to avoid such a problem is to declare it in advance - Template:User shared IP address. If you declare it, and later it becomes an issue, it won't look like you were trying to hide it. Mr.Z-man 21:48, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
People should not share accounts, but if you are going to be asked to intervene in a conflict by someone with whom you have an off-wiki relationship, you should divulge that information. VanIsaacWS Vexcontribs 23:42, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
I believe it is important, lest someone in the future use this thread as a precedent for an accusation, for us to state categorically that WP:Canvassing does not apply to off-wiki activities such as talking to your wife about a noticeboard discussion you are in, and she then goes and comments her complimentary opinion and we never want anyone to "out" themselves by divulging too much while maintaining a good faith effort to comply with not being a meatpuppet. While saying "user xy and I share an IP on occasion (or mostly)" is fine, going too far and saying "user xy is my wife" is probably not needed and definitely never should it be required to even go that in-depth, let alone any further explanation.Camelbinky (talk) 12:50, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree... those sharing an IP should note that the IP is shared... but further information is not required. If those sharing the IP wish to volunteer their identity and connections, that is fine... but we don't require them to do it. An exception, of course, would be if the wife is editing an article about her husband (ie the husband is the subject of the article)... then we would expect the wife to declare her connection to the subject. Of course that is a WP:COI disclosure... and not a WP:MEAT or WP:PUPPET disclosure (as always... our "rules" need to be interpreted in context). Blueboar (talk) 13:01, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
Agree.Camelbinky (talk) 13:07, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

RfC on WP:BRIGHTLINE

An RfC has opened on whether Wikipedia:No paid advocacy (BRIGHTLINE) should become policy. See Wikipedia talk:No paid advocacy. SlimVirgin (talk) 17:36, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

Just want to take this opportunity to comment this asinine idea of "Let's not have a discussion at the VPP and get actually do something, instead let's do a formal RfC and waste time and allow obstructionists to prevent things from happening! yay!" has got to stop. The best thing is to let the threads that FIRST bring up a PROBLEM run their course, come to a conclusion, close out and IMPLEMENT the results! Too many good discussions lose their focus and the best comments when turned into an RfC, so many good editors are turned off. ALL policy changes should go through discussion at the WP:VPP and then implemented immediately based on consensus and compromise. Can we have an RfC on THAT proposal?Camelbinky (talk) 18:58, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
Actually, a carefully crafted RFC can be far more likely to achieve consensus then an unfocused VPP discussion. Consider the template editor RFC, which has very strong support, and will certainly close successfully and soon as an uninvolved closer can be found, despite the fact that there have been many previous discussions about unbundling, here and at RFA, that have failed to achieve consensus. What can be useful, is having a discussion here, figuring out what the middle ground/compromise is, and then proposing that as an RFC. Its not appropriate to just try to figure out a compromise and implement that as an alternative to consensus. Monty845 19:09, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

Softblock school IPs on sight as is done with open proxies

Okay, this is something that is already commonly done, as can be seen here, here, and here (note how these three IPs were blocked before being issued the standard four warnings, not counting warnings from prior months, and how 64.56.87.247 was profiled as being "probably" a high school IP address). I'm actually playing devil's advocate here, because I don't really support this proposal, but I would rather see this be made official rather than a few sysops doing it because they can. I would argue that not every edit that comes from a school is malicious in nature, take for example 208.66.198.214 belonging to Gulf Coast High School. Of the seven edits that IP has made since coming off of an extended block from 2011, four have been good faith edits and three have been blatant vandalism (a majority of good faith edits). Realistically, who is more likely to go to the bother of creating an account at home, a person wanting to fix an article/update an article, or someone who is hell bent on defacing an article? Furthermore, many school IPs don't spew out vandalism at an intolerable rate (five malicious edits in one week, spread out over multiple days, coming from an IP representing upwards of 15,000 students + faculty, isn't an intolerable about IMHO, considering many residential IP ranges spew out more vandalism (as well as good faith edits) and don't get softblocked). As for creating work, people in non-English speaking countries often create and edit articles with poor spelling and grammar, hence creating more work for us, but I highly doubt we'd ever soft range-block these regions based on that, because that would be extremely racist. School IPs don't just represent students either; they also represent faculty, most of whom (save for support staff) have college educations, and I know we have at least a few registered contributors and sysops whom are school teachers.

On the other hand, as a RC patrol and vandal fighter here at Wikipedia, and sysop-lite on Conservapedia, I can appreciate a no-nonsense position when it comes to dealing with vandalism. In any case, I don't see anything changing as to how things are done, kids are always going to be kids (on Wikipedia or otherwise), and in my opinion, it would be better to have an official policy for soft-blocking school IPs on sight, as is currently done with open proxies, than to have some sysops blocking school IPs in a heavy-handed manner because their opinion is that school IPs do nothing but cause trouble. There are, in fact, some school IPs that almost exclusively vandalize, though not all are like this. I doubt that it helps that kids are often told not to use Wikipedia because it can be edited. Wikipedia:Abuse response is moribund, so that alternative to blocking is gone. We hardblock open proxies because of the problems they create. The general consensus, in my understanding, is that registration should not be required, but perhaps schools (or perhaps even shared IPs in general) should be the exception. PCHS-NJROTC (Messages) 20:23, 5 September 2013 (UTC)

If you are trying to write a policy on this, you might find some inspiration from da:Wikipedia:Blokering af uregistrerede brugere fra danske grundskoler about the same issue on Danish Wikipedia. --Stefan2 (talk) 21:05, 5 September 2013 (UTC)
Well, firstly my intent is to develop consensus one way or the other, and exactly how to implement in a way that would work for the English Wikipedia. If consensus is to support such policy, then we decide how we're going to implement such policy. Do we apply this policy just to K-12s, or to community colleges and universities as well? Do we allow account creation or disable it? If consensus is to reject such policy on the English Wikipedia, then we address how we should go forward in regards to the current system of escalating blocks every time such IPs are blocked (and sometimes skipping the shorter blocks and jumping straight to year-long blocks based on a sysop's opinion as to what kind of institution an IP belongs to). Personally, I would like to see change one way or the other. But indeed, that Danish Wikipedia page was interesting to read, and could be helpful in drafting a similar policy here on the English Wikipedia. PCHS-NJROTC (Messages) 21:31, 5 September 2013 (UTC)
My comments as one of the admins involved in these blocks:
  • PCHS-NJROTC and I have already engaged in a very detailed analysis and discussion of school blocks on this school system on my talk page at:
See my comments there.
I never just block a school IP on sight -- I have to see a history of ignored warnings and mostly vandalistic edits.
I normally leave some explanatory comments for my reasoning when blocking an IP; see my blocking log for what I'm talking about. In making this assessment I look at:
  • Previous warnings including those blanked but still in the talk page history
  • Edit filter (a.k.a. abuse filter) record
  • Previous blocks
  • Warnings and blocks on other Wikimedia projects (Wiktionary, other language versions of Wikipedia, etc.)
  • Diffs for the IP's edits -- back to at least the last block.
    • If there's been recent substantive, useful content coming from an IP, I'm wary of blocking it. On the other hand, if I see mostly abuse + an occasional minor edit, the small useful edits just aren't worth the disruption.
I think I'm pretty thorough and careful. I've made several thousand blocks, almost all of them to vandalism-only anonymous IPs. To my knowledge only a handful have been reversed or even questioned. As I said above, take a look at my blocking history and judge for yourself.
If I note a school as "probably" a school IP, I will have looked at the dates and times of the edits (including the abuse filter) as well as trace routes, geolocations and whois reports. I also look at the edits; if 25% are to the article for a specific school with comments like "Ms. Smith's algebra class sucks", it's probably, but not certainly, that school. If the IP is making edits in the middle of the night (in their time zone) or over school holidays, it's probably not a school. On the other hand, if the vandalism is childish in nature and only occurs during school hours -- well, it's probably a school. And if I'm wrong -- it's a non-school vandalism-only account that edits just like a school, it still needs to be blocked to prevent further disruption.
I'm slower than most admins to block regular editors viewed as problematic by others, preferring to exhaust other possibilities. I worry about BITE-yness around here. When it comes to chronic sources of schoolkid vandalism (Joey wears poopy-pants, etc.), however, I just see it as plugging leaks (garbage leaks in, content leaks out). It's a waste to have an IP that's a source of recurring vandalism over many years. You can just see that very little good is going to come out of these.
It's also demoralizing for our contributors to see their work deleted or defaced.
We have many useful younger contributors, even admins, that attend primary and secondary schools, probably some using IPs that I've blocked. They have registered accounts. Our block notices specifically invite serious contributors to register.
--A. B. (talkcontribsglobal count) 23:25, 6 September 2013 (UTC)
Thank you for the input, A. B., I'm glad you were able to input your opinion into the discussion. All considered, since most schools (in my opinion) likely have a history of vandalism, would you support or oppose across the board softblocks on NAT devices belonging to K-12 schools, as is done (as a hardblock) with open proxies? PCHS-NJROTC (Messages) 13:58, 8 September 2013 (UTC)
I'm sorry to be slow in responding.
Clarification for others: "K-12" refers to primary and secondary schools in several countries (U.S., Australia, etc.). Other countries organize their grades and student ages differently; our "Educational stage" article lists these arrangements by country. Some countries have post-secondary but pre-university schools for students in age ranges such as 16-18 or 18-19; most, but not all, of those also produce mostly vandalism.
My general sense is that the vandalism we get from anonymous editors using primary and secondary school IPs far outweighs the positive contributions but I haven't looked at every IP.
As you can see above, I'm cautious about getting "out in front" of the community's consensus on anonymous editing and blocking. As an administrator, I have a duty to follow the community's consensus, even if I don't always agree with it -- unless I have an obvious, compelling reason to do otherwise. (Those occasions are rare).
I personally like your idea about pre-emptively soft-blocking K-12 IPs but is the community ready for it? I suspect it's not (yet); restricting anonymous editing is anathema to many in our community.
You might get stronger support for now behind a rule imposing long (≥1 year) soft-blocks on "K-12ish" schools exceeding some threshold number of warnings and/or blocks with few positive contributions. These are school systems that with a tangible track record of trouble.
I wish you'd gotten more responses (pro or con); you've flagged an important problem. Take a look at Wikipedia:Centralized discussion; you may want to get a discussion started elsewhere with more visibility.
Thanks for raising this issue. --A. B. (talkcontribsglobal count) 23:49, 14 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Personally, I don't see a reason to treat Schools any differently from other IPs that cause disruption. Once an IP has gotten blocked the first time, the resumption of disruption from that IP should generally be dealt with by escalating blocks. While I prefer to see 4 warnings before each block, when someone makes a report, the IP has 3 previous blocks for general vandalism, and it is clear they are back at it, there really isn't a point to delaying the next block. That said, there are a vast number of IPs out there, and a dynamic IP vandal is unlikely to stay on the same IP long enough to get the long blocks that a static school IP ends up with. The school IP ends up with the long block not because we have anything against schools, but because we can identify it as a persistent source of vandalism. I would oppose blocks merely because we can trace the IP to a school, but identifying as a school to understand and stop a pattern of vandalism is fine. Monty845 05:14, 19 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Preemptively blocking all school IPs is harebrained proposal. Wikipedia:Abuse response is moribund because it was mainly the work of one editor, who is now vanished/retired. My impression is that most reports were ignored by the ISPs anyway. Someone not using his real name (talk) 20:21, 24 September 2013 (UTC)
  • Strongly oppose blocking presumed-school (i.e. every teacher and every student therein) without 1) blatant *constant* vandalism that is 2) demonstrably *more* troubles being generated than the bots and editors of wikipedia are able to handle in that particular 30-minute timespan. Just because it is N per day, or X good for every Y bad, is of no relevance. If there is even one good edit coming out of the school a month, *and* our vandalism-mitigation infrastructure can handle the current rate of bad stuff coming from that same school, I'd rather we not block it. That said, it probably makes sense for wikipedia admins to keep a spreadsheet of potential hotspot IP addresses -- not specifically schools, but just IPs that have at one time or another had been a significant source (purposely fuzzy) of non-constructive edits. This would encompass spam-servers, vandal-prone schools, and political campaign-staff headquarters-facilities, all in one fell swoop. Bots could auto-update the list, methinks, including colorizing it with detected-revert-percentage-graphs. That should make the world easier for admins. Even when a site has their IP temporarily blocked, I would recommend extreme serenity: first of all, just block editing privs, and just temporarily, i.e. five mins, then 10 mins, then 20 mins, and so on... dialing back down a notch once no vandalism has occurred for the specified period. Even when a block is in place for five mins, rather than *totally* block, just slow down access. Block every other request, for instance. Users doing good faith edits can simply hit retry on their browsers a few times. Vandals enjoying the thrill of rapidly screwing up page after page will get bored, if they keep getting timeouts and 404s, and will move on to some more-entertaining website. Last but not least, prefer to whitelist by cookies, if at all possible, rather than just blanket-block / blanket-slowdown the entire IP. Usually the vandals are sitting at one PC, hopping from page to page, not vandalizing one article while hopping from PC to PC. Note that the age-17 person who gets addicted to editing wikipedia while in high school will soon be the age-18 person doing research for their university essays. The children are our future, as the goofy old saying goes. Don't block schools, that's just shooting ourselves in both feet simultaneously. HTH. 74.192.84.101 (talk) 13:30, 28 September 2013 (UTC)
  • As a former K-12 school teacher, I take a very different attitude. If my students abused the privilege of accessing Wikipedia at school, I would hope that my school's access to Wikipedia would be blocked (at least temporarily). I would turn the experience of having the school's access blocked into a chance to teach my students a valuable life lesson... that one's actions can and do affect others, and that there are negative consequences to negative behavior. Blueboar (talk) 14:11, 28 September 2013 (UTC)
Well, I take your point, about personal responsibility, and so on. But I've been a student, so let us do a thought experiment. Assume we have an average classroom of 10 students (please ignore the validity of this round number as an indicator of real-world average student-teacher ratios!), in the hard-nosed statistical sense of the word: half the students are below average for the country, half are above average. The best student in the class is 90th percentile on their SAT, the worst student in the class is 10th percentile, *that* sort of statistically average. How many of our ten kids will have an interest in reading wikipedia? Well, many of them, it has info about math, but also bands, videogames, teevee, porn, et cetera. How many will want to constructively edit? Given the pop-culture stuff, we might hope for 4 out of 10, but that is probably wildly optimistic. How many will want to vandalize? At least one, given my dim view of the statistical American. Perhaps even two. Can the visigoth (or pair of Vandals maybe) do so much damage, that the IP is blocked, and wikipedia loses the possibility of *any* of the ten students contributing? Indubitably. So your proposal basically boils down to this: the vandal, with *no* consequence to themselves (school principals do not enforce the five pillars on students after all) can keep the geeks, brainiacs, and so on from editing wikipedia. The folks that care about pop-culture can find it in other places, like facebook or googleplus or the websites of the artists or whatnot.
   To put it as bluntly as I can, are you expecting the shy nerdy girl who loves learning about math by editing wikipedia, to organize her peers into a clique, and socially shun the vandal, until editing access to wikipedia is restored for her school? The valuable life lesson here is, bad people in my school get away with doing bad things, and the people I *thought* were on my side at wikipedia let it happen. Maybe the shy girl, our heroine, will edit wikipedia from home, or from a library with another IP, or figure out to register an account. But maybe not. And that is beside the point: I want the shy girl to be editing wikipedia *at* school, so that she can update the articles about videogames/bands/teevee, and impress her friends. Some might be impressed enough to edit, if the formerly shy girl shows them how. Anyways, I'm not trying to say you are wrong. You have a definite point. But rather than punish the class/school/campus as a group, why not just block the vandal? We can. As soon as one bad edit shows up, block the PC, using a cookie, for 10 minutes, then 20, then 40, then 80, and so on. Vandals in junior high are unlikely to be smart enough to get around even *that* simple of a technology, in my experience.[citation needed] Why block the IP of all students indefinitely, when we can just temp-block the vandal? 74.192.84.101 (talk) 01:13, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
  • @74.192.84.101 - We aren't paid, you know. We don't have time to keep spreadsheets, do 5 minute blocks and see if they've worked, etc. And most of us like to send time actually improving articles, not just blocking. I'm sorry, that wouldn't work. There are times when I think blocking schools on sight isn't a bad idea. And I wish it were the case that we revert all their vandalism. Dougweller (talk) 15:21, 28 September 2013 (UTC)
Waitaminute. Are you telling me I'm not getting paid for this, either?? Curse you, Jimbo Wales, and your fiendish spacebar key too!!  :-) Yes. I know you are not paid for this, Doug, in the traditional sense. But we *are* rewarded for our time here on wikipedia. There is the satisfaction of editing, sure. That provides us with personal pride in craftsmanship, and provides readers with useful knowledge. And there is the little bump we get when people thank us for our efforts, so allow me to say, thanks for your hard work. It is appreciated. But I'm after bigger fish here, and I think you would like to catch some of these fish, too, if I can convince you they are in fact feasible to catch.
   I want more editors, and more admins. Lots more. See WP:RETENTION. I'm having a conversation over on another talkpage with Besieged, who is a wikiCop using huggle to revert vandalism: 1000 this month, and another 1000 last month. They aren't an admin, yet anyways; they just want to help. (I have not asked if they realize there is no hazard pay involved!) But there are a lot of false-positives, which bites the beginners. He rushes from fire to fire, and does not have time to review each carefully. He has no time for spreadsheets, either. We need better automated tools, which 'magically' perform the steps we'd like them to do. Blocking IPs is too damn granular; see my sob story above, about the 10-to-20-percents of students that *would* edit from time to time, if only we let them. I'm not suggesting we switch from huggle to excel, or from range-blocks to excel, I'm suggesting that we improve huggle, and improve the blocking-tools, to automagically Do The Right Thing. Fewer false-poz incidents from huggle, and less time range-blocking an IP, will both result in *more* editors, which means more admins/wikiCops/etc to fight the vandalism. We have 500M uniques, and 0.1M sometime-editors. We need it to be 5M, if we want to have a hope of stopping effectively *all* the vandalism... and we are shooting ourselves in the foot, when we block schools on first sighting. Why not hold off on blocking a vandal, until we see the whites of their eyes? Especially if doing so means we shoot less civilians by accident, and in turn they remain editors, and swell the pool of anti-vandal gunslingers... this is the sort of positive feedback loop I'm trying to get people interesting in building with me. 74.192.84.101 (talk) 01:13, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
  • As an alternative, I would like to see a way to add IP addresses or maybe even a block of IP addresses to my watch list, preferably with some automatic expiration time. That way, having encountered vandalism from an IP, I could easily monitor if the vandal was still active and revert or block as appropriate. In a school setting it is typically one kid who is being a problem and they quickly lose interest if they are promptly and consistently reverted. Meanwhile a student or teacher making constructive edits from the same IP will not get discouraged.--agr (talk) 19:50, 6 October 2013 (UTC)
    • We've wanted that for 9 years, never got it, but never got told no. See bugzilla:470. Jackmcbarn (talk) 00:14, 7 October 2013 (UTC)
So... that sounds like exactly what I want, or at least, a good portion of what I want -- for starters.  ;-) Is there anything technological preventing it from happening? Can it be added to Huggle v3? 74.192.84.101 (talk) 01:13, 19 October 2013 (UTC)

Why do the Collaboration areas of WikiProjects always fail?

I have been working with some other editors at WP:Today's articles for improvement, and things continue over there. However, we have begun talking about the collaborations that other wikiprojects have, and it got me thinking. I took a quick look around at other collaborations listed at Category:Wikipedia collaborations, and I could find none that I considered 'active'. All of the ones listed at {{CotM}}, except perhaps WP:India, had almost no activity in the last 3 months, and around half had none in the last year.

I can't help but wonder why almost all seem to die out by the one year mark. I don't know if it the lack of participants, interest, articles, collaboration visibility, personal recognition, or what. However, from what I have seen, I am left to conclude that Wikiproject led collaborations simply do not work. Unless there is something I don't understand. --NickPenguin(contribs) 22:43, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

Is part of the answer that some editors do work that is project related and don't participate by discussing or updating any project pages? Vegaswikian (talk) 23:03, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
This is going to sound like a bad attitude but generally speaking people don't want to collaborate anymore. They want to stay in their own little corners and fiddle with whatever their pet interests are. The few times someone does start a collaboration, some editor or group of editors representing a project come calling and start picking at it because its violated their airspace or some rule they have established for "their" articles. Case in point, the Novels Wikiproject not allowing Infoboxes on "their" articles. Milhist not allowing certain things on "their" articles, etc., etc. Eventually the people running those collaborations get tired of the fighting, ownership issues and POV pushing and close it down. That's what happened to several of them and that's what has happened to a lot of the WikiProject's as well. 71.126.152.253 (talk) 23:29, 11 October 2013 (UTC)
I think we need to distinguish between protectionism and enforcing standards. I'm not sure where the current school of thought is on Wikiproject specific standards, but if they are a barrier to people working together, this is a major problem. Ownership is an ongoing problem, and it's up to every one of us to open themselves to a different perspective; I was told once that there is no monopoly on good ideas, and therefore sometimes, you do not know the best way to do something. --NickPenguin(contribs) 00:16, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

There have been some very successful collaborations, but usually they were to get some specific thing done and only went for a couple weeks. --erachima talk 23:48, 11 October 2013 (UTC)

@Erachima: Were these spontanious collaborations or prearranged? I have a feeling that the vast majority of successful 'collaborations' are occurring randomly: two or more people happen to be interested in an article at the same time, and improve it dramatically. Correct me if I'm wrong. The general sense I'm getting is that organized collaboration, for whatever reason, just doesn't work. --NickPenguin(contribs) 00:16, 14 October 2013 (UTC)

They are spread too thin. You need critical mass to make these projects work, but they never seem to understand this idea. If you double the size of a group, you will get more than twice as much work done—it will snowball. On the other hand, Today's Articles for Improvement looked to nominate seven articles a week. What happens when you take a small group that hasn't done anything yet, then divide it by seven? Of course nothing got done. I pointed this out right off the bat but it didn't click with anybody. They need to pick one article a week, publicize the hell out of that article, find a few people who swear to work on the chosen article each week regardless of what it is, and that momentum will attract people who are on the fence about contributing. You need momentum for a project to become self-sustaining. —Designate (talk) 02:22, 12 October 2013 (UTC)

My sentiments exactly. Although I also figured ending up on the main page would be a catalyst for this.--Coin945 (talk) 02:32, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree with Designate that it's a mistake to take on too many articles at a time, but I hate committing to anything on this volunteer project. I would definitely sign up, though, to be notified of one article per week that hundreds of other people are notified about, and maybe glance at any that pique my curiosity; and maybe do some reading and make/suggest some changes if the atmospherics are pleasant. I.e., informal, semi-spontaneous uncommitted collaboration is nice; obligations are burdensome and undermine the therapy that I'm here for. --Anthonyhcole (talk · contribs · email) 05:59, 12 October 2013 (UTC)
Part of the reason for the decline in collaboration is that people enjoy collaborating to write new articles (at least a stub)... but they are more hesitant to collaborate to improve on articles that are already written. Improving on an article might require doing some actual research (ie more than doing a quick google search). In many topic areas, the "sasic" articles have already been written. Sure, there are still lots and lots of topics that don't have articles... but these tend to be about more specialized topics... topics that don't attract lots of people. These topics need subject specialists to write them, and there simply are not that many subject specialists around to make a proper collaboration. Blueboar (talk) 15:14, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
I don't think that's it at all. When one attempts to improve an article one almost inevitably has to lock horns with that article's guardians, who think it's the bee's knees as it is. That's hardly ever an enjoyable experience. Eric Corbett 16:50, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
Consider this... those article "guardians" are often exactly the people who collaborated to create it in the first place. They are just trying to protect what they created. Blueboar (talk) 17:42, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
Consider this. They're all too often children, with no idea of how to write an encyclopedia article. Eric Corbett 17:49, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
To say that people can behave like children is an understatement, but I think that is something that we have all fallen victim to before. We protect what we care about, and we don't like to see the work we have done become undone. That is the struggle we all face, to let someone else carry on what we have accomplished, even if it is not exactly as we would have done. This idea of 'critical mass' that you speak of @Designate:, have you ever been a participant in some sort of collaboration where there was this intense focus? Can you describe how it was successful? Do you think that the only way a project like WP:TAFI can be successful is if we give up on the multi-article format and narrow down the projects aims? --NickPenguin(contribs) 00:16, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
  • They don't "fail." Sometimes they become inactive for awhile (and some may not revive) but there is always those topics, which may at some point need a useful collaboration place (the world changes, after all), and they provide it with some structure and history. Alanscottwalker (talk) 15:23, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
@Alanscottwalker: Maybe my wording is too harsh. But what I mean is, by about the one year mark, a 'collaboration project' has zero participants, and new potential participants are met with an outdated page with no active editors. Certainly there is always stuff to do, but how can we make the collaboration bit actually work, in the long term? --NickPenguin(contribs) 00:16, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I have at least two thoughts about this. One, I agree with the critical mass; it's the same as the difference between an active WikiProject and a moribund one. Also, in a lot of ways, Wikipedia isn't collaborative, but rather a whole bunch of people working mostly individually in different threads that somehow come together to resemble a cohesive collection of articles. Chris857 (talk) 16:57, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia is failing because these collaborations and projects are failing. Not from a lack of interest in the collaboration itself. The failure of these collaborations are a direct result of the negative culture that has rooted itself in this project. Working in a group is hard, and often leads to disagreements. People have been shown that a disagreement can prevent them from being an admin or can lead to blocks or bans from a topic. So its best just to avoid working in groups. Additionally the groups that most often succeed here are the ones who are most successful in pushing their point of view such as USRoads and Novels. Some of the most active projects are the worst violators of policies like article ownership and POV. When the comunity fails to enforce policies against these projects, it causes other projects that are being bullied by them to give up in frustration. When the Wikipedia admins begin to enforce policy even;y, the problem will work itself out. Since I doubt that will happen, its only a matter of time before even the active projects cease to function. At this point I would advocate for eliminating the WikiProjects completely as a failed experiment. More harm has come from them than benefits. 71.126.152.253 (talk) 18:01, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
But projects are a form of collaboration. What you seem to be complaining about is that some projects are collaborating in a way that you don't agree with. Blueboar (talk) 19:26, 13 October 2013 (UTC)
Its not that I don't agree with it. A lot of them are violating policy by forcing others to follow "their" point of view or showing undo article ownership. All too often these projects "own" the articles so if anyone outside their group, including other wikiprojects, attempt to edit the article they are run off or bullied by that project. I have seen it happen frequently and often by admins. This makes editors not want to participate in the project. If the community is going to allow one project or a small group of projects force their views on everyone else, that "collaboration" is doing more harm than good to the project as a whole. 71.126.152.253 (talk) 02:13, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree with your thoughts about critical mass @Chris857: It takes at least two people make an active WikiProject, and it takes at least two people to collaborate. But how do we get those two people to work on the article at the same time? I think this touches on your second point, by and large, we have a bunch of editors sharing similar interests and improving articles they care about, separated only by time. How do we get people to work on these articles at the same time? How do we get the word out that, yes, you can find someone else who cares about this article as much as you do?
I am not sure what you mean @Blueboar: Are you saying that WikiProjects by their nature are themselves are collaborations? How would you say they successfully promote collaborations on specific articles? My general observation is that by the one year mark, the vast majority of WikiProjects (or WikiProject task forces, as the case may be) wind up inactive. Certainly this is not always the case, but I would be interested to hear your thoughts. --NickPenguin(contribs) 00:16, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
Yes, that is exactly what I am saying. WikiProjects are by their nature collaborations. I am regularly involved with several active WikiProjects... all work collaboratively. In some cases the collaboration is at the specific article level (where the project says "hey, let's all go to article X and work on it"). In other cases the collaboration is at the coordination level (where the project coordinates the efforts of project members ... "OK, Joe and Mary will go and work on article X, while Frank and June will go and work on article Y... do we have any volunteers to work on article Z?"). And in some cases the collaboration comes in the form of jointly discussing problems ("I notice that many of our articles have problem P... let's discuss and reach a consensus on how to deal with it?"). In each case there is some level of collaboration... although they may be collaborating in different ways and on different things. Blueboar (talk) 00:51, 14 October 2013 (UTC)
@Blueboar: Certainly you are correct that WikiProjects are by nature a collaboration. I don't doubt that there have been some past successes with organized collaboration, but I have not yet seen a collaboration actively sustained for more than a year. What active WikiProjects are you a part of? Do they have a currently active collaboration event, and how is it structured? --NickPenguin(contribs) 16:50, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

Who says that "collaboration areas of WikiProjects always fail"? Does anyone have proof of this statement? What makes a Wikiproject a "fail"? Is a project a "failure" just because there is little discussion taking place on the talkpage? Is it a failure when articles "belonging" to the project do not get tagged? assessed? Improved with time? Is it a failure if project members let articles/categories/templates/etc. "belonging" to the project get deleted without a fight? What about projects where a lot of "talk" happens, but nothing else? Just wondering. XOttawahitech (talk) 00:55, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

@Ottawahitech:I'm not saying that WikiProjects as a whole are failing. However a WikiProject with no participation, discussion, or article contributions would be my classic definition of a failure. What I am saying is to apply these same criteria to an organized collaboration process. As far as I can see, there are no active collaborations where articles are selected and worked on. Unless I am simply not seeing the success stories, what I am saying is that while general "We should improve article type-X" may work over the long term, there is no example of a successful project that has sustained specific, short term improvement goals. --NickPenguin(contribs) 16:50, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
@NickPenguin: Unfortunately there is no way to determine if editors who are working on an article were made aware of it through a wiki-project. Also, lets not forget other areas of collaboration such as wp:AFDs wp:CFDs etc, which are also linked from wiki-projects. XOttawahitech (talk) 01:52, 18 October 2013 (UTC)

I think part of it has to do with lack of response, rather than lack of action just to get a collaboration going. Another is simply expecting a deadline or some level of progress. I believe collaborations should be done with no deadline or expect anyone to expect immense progress.Lucia Black (talk) 01:29, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

@Lucia Black: I think this speaks to the idea that the wiki is a bunch of largely independent editors who, by coincidence, work on the same article. Maybe that is the underlying problem, and organizing a collaboration project is like trying to herd cats. Maybe it is the case that specific goals don't get results because they are too focused? --NickPenguin(contribs) 16:50, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
Yes, i think most collaborations fail because they set too many goals rather a universal goal. I think collaborations can be possible, but they have to be "advertised" better. Example WP:VG has a good way of advertising their goals. it shows a status on their goals on their home page.
But for barely active members such as WP:COMICS i've always proposed a collaboration with goals and a specific article that could be worked on as a collaboration.Lucia Black (talk) 17:05, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
@Lucia Black: WP:VG certainly does have a good system going with that progress bar thing. It makes their broad goal accessible to anyone who comes to the WP:VG page, and it can be accomplished by anyone, without being directly involved with the project in any major way. In general, how successful has the broad improvement goals been with WP:VG?
Maybe this is something that WP:TAFI can do, realign the project into a general wiki-wide progress bar with weekly improvement suggestions? Or perhaps something like this exists already. --NickPenguin(contribs) 19:19, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
I think WP:VG has very accessible reliable high-quality sources and a lot of experienced editors. I think its just a little more than the goal status keeping it at bay. but this does give more encouragement for more experienced editors to look for articles they have no interest in.Lucia Black (talk) 19:32, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

@NickPenguin: Just wanted to mention: Category:Wikipedians by Wikipedia collaboration in case anyone wants to do more research. XOttawahitech (talk) 13:45, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

Worked example

I think we can find out the answer right here, if everyone who has previously participated in this discussion (and anyone else who feels like it) would take up the challenge:

The Wikipedia:WikiProject Medicine/Collaboration of the Month for this month is Gastrointestinal cancer. Please either:

  • Go make a substantive improvement to that article today, and post here what you've done (and what happened to your edit, and whether you had enough fun to do that every single month), or
  • Post a reason here (any honest reason) why you didn't. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:33, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
Well for me, I am simply not interested in gastrointestinal cancer, or in general what that Wikiproject has picked for their past improvement drives. But I am not that WikiProject's target group. Looking at the article history, there have been 5 participants since Oct 1st, and 3 of those have made the most substantive improvements. But I will ping the editors that did improve the article and that they give us feedback on how they discovered the article (collaboration listing or independently) and their thoughts on the matter. Pinging @LT910001: @Lesion: @Dolfrog: @GeorgeLouis: @TylerDurden8823:.
  • Reason why I didn't- I don't care about gastorintenstinal cancer. No offence to those with that particular disease. Now if you had picked something geographical or historical, answer might be different.Camelbinky (talk) 18:54, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
@Camelbinky: Would you say you regularly contribute to articles that fall under the WikiProject Medicine project? If so, are you simply more interested in the historical type medical articles? --NickPenguin(contribs) 19:24, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
There ought to be a ==History== section (first successful treatments? Change in survival rates over the decades? Maybe a famous surgeon?) in that article, and there should be a significant epidemiological section, including the fact that the rates vary dramatically by country. The fact that this didn't occur to someone with Camelbinky's experience shows one of the problems: it's not obvious what needs to be added. We're no longer "leaving something (obvious) unfinished for the next person" (an idea that was prominent 'way back in the day). WhatamIdoing (talk) 21:23, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I made this edit adding information about gastrointestinal carcinoid tumors. I'm not 100% it's placed correctly but am hoping/depending on someone with better knowledge than I have to check my work. Zad68 19:10, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
@Zad68: Looking at your contribution history, I would say you have quite a bit of experience under your belt, but would you consider unfamilliarity with subject matter to be a major barrier in a collaboration? --NickPenguin(contribs) 19:24, 15 October 2013 (UTC)
I'm not sure... Everybody has a different focus and view about what's important to them to work on. For me, I'd say what's more important than familiarity with the subject is the ability to locate great sourcing. My favorite thing to do is come across a great new source and add content based on it (although I'm slow at doing it). One of the things I like about working on medical content is that there's a LOT of good sourcing, it's available and easily searchable. I guess after doing a little bit of work in the WP:MED area I'm now familiar with the sourcing rules, so it has worked both ways: The sourcing was available so that made me interested in working on it, and as I've gotten more familiar at working in this area I'm better at identifying good sources now. I've probably never worked on article content dealing with Renaissance art or Japanese cuisine, but if there were a collaboration and someone had already identified great sources and they were easily accessible I might look at it. This isn't everyone's focus, some are great copyeditors and would rather improve the wording, others are great at layout, others are great at ensuring WP:MOS compliance, etc. I'm not sure formal "Collaborations" are necessary. Everything on Wikipedia is a collaboration all the time. Zad68 19:41, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

This may be a bit of a side track, but there are some areas that are intentional short-term collaborations that are very successful, like WP:GA. A GA nomination is basically asking for a one-on-one short-term collaboration with one (or more) other editor(s), and it works really well, almost always results in a significant improvement to the article, and a clear milestone is achieved. Peer reviews are another request for collaboration. So are RFCs, and the FA processes. There are plenty of successful collaboration areas on Wikipedia but they might not be "WikiProject Collaborations". Zad68 19:51, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

Thinking about this more, this might be the answer to your question. WikiProject Collaborations fail if they don't have a clearly-defined achievable goal, an expected project deadline, and a detectable reward/sense of accomplishment when the goal is met. They are also not very well advertised. GA (as one example) has all those features. Zad68 19:54, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

Sourcing might be a bit complicated for some people, so this archived discussion lists some good sources for that article. I believe that they are all free, full-text online sources. WhatamIdoing (talk) 21:23, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

I think the issue is that this "collaboration of the month" seems too universal, and not all editors work on the same thing, so each month you might get more or you might get less...here's an idea....we make this into "Collaboration(s) of the month" and separate it by each wikiprojects for them to make a consensus on what article they want, then....use the page to advertise these collaborations for others to choose from. Not only that, we also add it in.
I was thinking we make our own template, and our own bot, so that this template can be placed in each wikiproject homepage (to be advertised) and the bot will read that template, and put the information in its respected area in the main COTM section. We should also implement a status and review which collaborations were "successfull" and which ones weren't so we can know which topic is the least popular.Lucia Black (talk) 23:48, 15 October 2013 (UTC)

POV Pushing described

I'd welcome input on what consistutes "POV Pushing", it doesn't seem to be defined anywhere. In my view:

  • POV Pushing is where an editor repeatedly tries to add a point of view to an articles, against concensus
  • If an editor adds a POV just once, and accept its removal, is that pushing?
  • The proper procedure is to discuss the POV in talk, or on one of the policy forums, and try to gain consensus.
  • Is POV Pushing the same as Civil POV Pushing?

--Iantresman (talk) 11:07, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

Sign the end of your post, not the section header. --erachima talk 11:27, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
First, POV pushing is not limited to adding information... repeatedly removing a particular POV from an article can also be POV Pushing. Second... while adding/removing a particular POV (especially against consensus) certainly can be "POV pushing"... it is not always "POV Pushing". Sometimes the addition or removal is an honest effort to introduce a WP:Neutral Point of View... an effort to correct a POV article.
It is not always easy to tell the difference between "pushing for a POV", and "insisting on NPOV". We have to look at the context (what exactly is the editor trying to add/remove, why are they trying to add/remove it, and why do others oppose it.)
That said... repeatedly adding (or repeatedly removing) any edit (POV or not) is called Edit Warring, which we do not approve of... and the proper procedure is always to stop edit warring... and instead discuss the issue on talk pages, notice boards, RFCs etc. and find consensus. Blueboar (talk) 13:35, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
Agree with Blueboar. 'POV Pushing' is just another word for 'biased editing'. Adding something, even once, is biased editing. Deleting something, even once, is biased editing. (But what if the something in question was perfectly neutral? Ah, therein lies the rub: no such something exists!) Perfect NPOV is something wikipedia strives for, but not something we will ever achieve. Unbiased editing is something that individual editors should strive for, but not something they will ever achieve -- we are all inherently biased by our jobs, nationality, schooling, genders, personal philosophy, politics, and so on. That does not mean wikipedia's goal of NPOV cannot be accomplished, just that it is very difficult. The more important problem, in my mind, is WP:UNDUE. Say we have an article. It looks pretty NPOV on first glance, because it gives time to all sides. But... *that* is almost never NPOV, because not *all* sides deserve equal time! Some sides are fringe, and don't belong in the encyclopedia at all. Some sides are hot topics for research, and thus deserve a bare mention, near the end ("early research into foo indicate baz reported the NYT last month" and beyond that sentence fragment nothing more). Some sides are historically very crucial, but now discredited in mainstream thought... those deserve *historical* mention, but certainly not 'equal time' even if a few folks still insist the old ways are best.
   Anyways, there is disruptive editing, there is tendentious editing, there is paid advocacy, there is regular old pretty much unavoidable biased editing... I do not believe there is a thing called 'POV Pushing' that is meaningfully distinct. Wikipedia pillar two says, NPOV is non-negotiable. Strive for it, in articles, and in sets of articles, and in categories. But do not ever expect it, or feel like you have to berate people when they fail to achieve it. It is just as normally expected grammar failingness, typical errours in speling, not-rare incorrect if-when-else logic, and all the other problems of an open encyclopedia.  ;-) Just keep calm and carry on, and in another editor is giving undue weight, or hurting the article's NPOV, say so, as civilly and politely as you know how... then work out what to do.
   Final note: NPOV is primarily for mainspace articles, of course... say what you want on your user talkpages, as long as you do not get wikimedia foundation in legal hot water, and follow pillar four. Article talkpages are a grey area... stating your opinion there, and listing the sources which back you up, even if they are blogs and WP:OR and common sense, *can* be very helpful... sometimes another editor will chime in and say, yeah, I read an article in the Economist that said the same thing... and then you've got a reliable source for that POV and can try and decide what amount of *weight* to give it... other times, all you hear is crickets, no WP:RS appears, and the other editors just smile and nod... so your WP:OR stays on the article's talkpage indefinitely, or more charitably, until one day somebody else shows up, and it reminds them of that obscure but reliable scholarly journal they read the other day.... That is the best case.
   The worst case, when an editor is always bringing up their preferred POV, trying to pooh-pooh other POVs, snidely looking down their nose at the proponents thereof, and so on -- now *that* might be POV-pushing. But you can also just call it failing to respect WP:UNDUE, tendentious editing, WP:OR, WP:SPA, and in general WP:NPOV should they try to get their preferred POV given more time-slash-primacy in the article than it deserves. So why insult them, and call it POV-pushing, when you can just say what they're doing wrong, in terms of the way the article has to be, in order to satisfy NPOV? Same thing for multiple editors arguing some POV position, do not accuse them of tag-teaming, when you have other less-insulting descriptions of where they are wrong. Bring in an uninvolved third party, or an admin, if you have to. No need to pick a fight first, and then bring in an admin to declare the winner; that just means everybody loses, because you generate grudges, bad feelings, a hostile editing environment, and so on. There's more the WP:AGF than first glance might show you. It's a long-term strategic way to build a better encyclopedia, not just a short-term tactic to avoid insulting somebody the *first* time they screw up, so you can claim to the admin that the *second* time they screwed up you *knew* they were POV-pushing and thus you no longer had to WP:AGF plus he said then she said blah blah blah BLAH.
   Heinlein has a lot of sci-fi stories where the hero plays the friendly village idiot... always assuming good faith... right up until they pull their blaster and bury the body-parts of the disruptive editor (err, sorry, alien scumbag) in some dark alley. Wikipedia is almost exactly like that, except you don't even need a blaster: just give them plenty of rope, then some more rope, then some more, and finally call an admin, and watch the hammer fall. Beside the strategic and tactical advantages, WP:AGF also tends to be less stressful on your lymph nodes... and often enough, the editor you thought was POV-pushing just turns out to have been a beginner, or having a bad week in real life, or having a bad hair day on their social network, or some other temporary thing. Bottom line: what, me worry? HTH. 74.192.84.101 (talk) 19:48, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply, good content, of which I agree with much. I also find "POV pushing" to be an unhelpful description, and am frustrated with its non-constructive use. --Iantresman (talk) 20:38, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
I apologize in advance if I am misusing this forum, I am one of the "new editors who get driven away" that have been part of several discussions here. I have been reading Yiddish songs from the early 20th century and found a wonderful picture of Nicholas II. I added it with information about the text on the picture. It was peremptorily removed by a Marjak because he did not feel it was in keeping with "his" article. And in fact he accused me of vandalism. When I tried to add something to the "talk" tab to ask him about it, there was some sort of conflict which caused my comment to disappear. I believe the picture I added was of historical interest, adding a different point of view. Different from Marjak's. So he just killed it. I had not come to add anything to Wikipedia for a long, long time, and this certainly does not encourage me. I suppose Marjak thinks he owns this article. Nicholas_II_of_Russia Jane Peppler (talk) 02:19, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

Proposal for bot to list AFDs that have no one participating but the nominator

  • I propose a bot be created which will generate a list of all AFDs that have been open for at least a week, with no one participating but the nominator. It'll be rather easy for someone to patrol these and deal with them, thus solving this problem rather well. Dream Focus 15:51, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support --cyclopiaspeak! 16:45, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support with suggested modification. Why not have the bot simply provide a tabular listing of open AfDs, sorted by some combination of how long they've been open, and how many people are participating? Ones that have been open for 2 weeks with 200 people would be lower on the list... ones that have 2 weeks and 2 people would be near the top. AfD's with 2 days and 200 people would be *at* the bottom, ones open 2 days with 2 people... I'm not sure where they fit in, somewhere in the middle prolly. We'd have to work out a useful formula, or at least, a useful heuristic. But I think hardcoded days=7 and participants=1 is too narrow. Good idea though, and I'd rather have the hardcoded easy-to-implement bot, than no bot whatsoever. Thanks. 74.192.84.101 (talk) 01:19, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
Practicalities aside, we certainly need to discourage a purely mechanistic approach to this. Quality of reasoning as well as numbers matters, and we need to avoid 'drive-by' comments distorting the process. If hard-coded, perhaps the threshold should be higher. --AJHingston (talk) 16:32, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
See also User:Snotbot/Current AfD's. ‑Scottywong| gossip _ 16:20, 24 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support: I can see no harm in creating the bot. pbp 16:14, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support - Sounds a great idea!. →Davey2010→→Talk to me!→ 01:40, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Generally support bots for this kind of thing, but a category might work better: Pre-populate all XFDs with a template that displays "There has been no discussion yet, please remove this template if you edit this page and are not the nominator" and which categorizes the pages as an XFD with no non-nominator discussion. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs) 02:11, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Good idea, but this is basically a WP:SOFIXIT case, not a policy proposal. --erachima talk 08:17, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Fair enough if Dream Focus writes it. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 12:16, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment. Doesn't Scottywong (Snotbot) already have something? --Boson (talk) 14:11, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
    Sort of, User:Snotbot/AfD's requiring attention uses more then just the number of !votes. Monty845 17:17, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
    Yes, it's better than just a raw list of AfD's that have no votes (which would, of course, be clogged up by a ton of newly created AfD's which haven't existed for a long enough time for someone to comment on them). It scores AfD's based on how few votes they have, how long they've been active, how many times they've been relisted, and how many bytes of discussion they contain. The ones that really need attention the most (closing is imminent, few or no votes, been relisted twice already) are listed at the top. These are the ones that are most likely to be closed as no consensus due to inactivity. ‑Scottywong| soliloquize _ 13:57, 24 October 2013 (UTC)
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Snotbot/Current_AfD%27s already serves. You can sort and select AfDs with no votes, and sort that list descending by time open. You then have a mindnumbingly dreary list of discussions, usually on obscure weird topics well into the dark grey zone of notability. I support them all being SOFTDELETEd. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:24, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support This will certainly be useful. I would make sense to try this as the first step and then see what happens. After all, the best course to improve AfD is to encourage more people to participate. DGG ( talk ) 03:50, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

EL spamming by new accounts

Why can a newly registered account (or an IP) add WP:ELs? There are any number of these edits, and they're all spam. How often do you see one that's constructive in any useful way?

Surely we can exclude this technically? Andy Dingley (talk) 00:27, 20 October 2013 (UTC)

They aren't all spam. Just lots of them. For WP:AFC contributors, which are almost always not-yet-autoconfirmed editors, it is essential that they be allowed to include URLs. Perhaps giving special flagging in the edit history for edits that include what appears to be a URL (i.e. either a URL or a template that, when expanded as of the time of the save, results in a URL) should be enough. Edits by "New editors just getting started" are already flagged in edit summaries. The capability to patrol such edits would also be helpful. davidwr/(talk)/(contribs) 03:32, 20 October 2013 (UTC)
  • We also have the policy WP:V, which as you can image is somewhat dependent on Citing sources. Source often contain URL's so a ban on URL's for new editors would in effect prohibit them from making high quality edits which include online references. Jeepday (talk) 12:55, 20 October 2013 (UTC)
I have often edited while not logged in, and often added URLs. I do get asked to solve a CAPTHA each time. (Thus the system knows about them and I suppose could log them.) To forbid such edits would as Jeepday says above practically preclude high-quality IP edits. DES (talk) 18:48, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

Use of (song) and (album)

I'm convinced that well-known disambiguators "(song)" and "(album)" are not well-used. Also, "name (band OR artist song)" and "name (band OR artist album)" is too precise, unless it is used to disambiguate the song and album of the same name with the same artist or band. Example is Thriller (album). We have discussions about which song should own the title of the same name with same disambiguator. But they went nowhere, and I'm afraid that current one in WT:DAB will end with "no consensus". If "song (artist OR band name)" and "album (artist OR band name)" are not the answers, what are other alternatives? --George Ho (talk) 18:51, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

This I think is more a problem with WP:COMMONNAME than how we disambiguate, as the song/album monikers otherwise follow the advice for title disambiguation. There is fair argument (I'm not saying which way is right) on whether Thriller (album) should point to (or even be) the MJ album, or point to the Thriller disambig page, and that all rests on what consensus determines is the common name. --MASEM (t) 19:19, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
(ec) This is a rather unclear statement of what it is you see as a problem. At Talk:Thriller (Michael Jackson album)#Requested move 4, a majority opposed renaming Thriller (Michael Jackson album) to Thriller (album). Now at Wikipedia:Redirects for discussion#Thriller (album), there is strong support for keeping Thriller (album) as a redirect to Thriller (Michael Jackson album). So what precisely is the problem with this? Per the WP:SONGDAB convention, the disambiguated title appears to be the correct title. The matter of the redirect is somewhat separate. Framing the question as are readers looking for Thriller (album) better served by sending them directly to Thriller (Michael Jackson album) or to Thriller#Music, it would appear consensus is for redirecting to the Michael Jackson album. Apart from purists who on the one side claim Thriller (album) should be treated as a primary topic and have the article for the Michael Jackson album moved to that shorter title or who, on the other side, insist that WP:INCOMPDAB applies and that Thriller (album) should redirect to Thriller#Music — is there an actual problem with having a page named FOO (song) or FOO (album) redirect to either a more fully qualified title or to a disambiguation page depending on the specific context? Is it really so important to have one rule that applies uniformly in every case? olderwiser 19:36, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
I think there's some common sense involved too....its not the same when looking for a movie of the same name or TV series, because the creator or developer aren't well known or not commonly known universally. Unlike albums and CDs, it's strictly by the artist before the year. For example, some series aren't always divided by year but by region origin too. However, i don't deny that sometimes it could be simpler and some disambiguation is unnecessary.Lucia Black (talk) 19:39, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
I'll rephrase for you: If either the song or album hadn't co-exist, the title would have been Thriller (Michael Jackson) rather than "Thriller (album)". There's no need to tell readers that the subject is either the song or the album if the other by the same person doesn't exist, is there? --George Ho (talk) 19:55, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
Well, WP:SONGDAB suggests using "(band)", "(album)", or "(song)" as first order disambiguators, so no, the title would not have been Thriller (Michael Jackson) under that guidance. Are there other songs or albums that are disambiguated using ONLY the artist's name? olderwiser 20:01, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
No, unfortunately. We would have done the situation earlier and avoid the whole mess. Now we have too many "(album)" and "(song)", and we don't know what to do. --George Ho (talk) 20:29, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
What do you mean, we have too many "(album)" or "(song)". I'm not clear exactly of this complaint here. --MASEM (t) 20:32, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
I'll rephrase: why is "(album)" preferred over "(artist name)"? Why did the guideline choose one over other? George Ho (talk) 20:46, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
Using a word like "song" or "album" cements what the topic is (everyone knows what those words mean), while many band/artist names are not well known, and would leave the idea of what the topic is, from title alone, unclear. It's the same approach used through the rest of WP for disambiguation. --MASEM (t) 20:53, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
With that cleared up, how do we prevent abuse of "(song)" and "(album)" if further precision is opposed? --George Ho (talk) 20:56, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
Er, what abuse? And where is precision being opposed? The Thriller case is, save for what is the most common name, shows the system working correctly. --MASEM (t) 21:03, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
So the system is not affected by the Thriller case, right? It's just Thriller itself, right? --George Ho (talk) 21:32, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
I would think so. There are many uses of the word "Thriller", beyond just the album and song, so even before we get to the music side, we need the disambiguation. When we get to the musical meaning, there are clearly many "Thriller"s out there, so some are going to need more disambigatin than just "song" and "album". The question now is, and that's where consensus needs to decide, is if Michael Jackson's album/song by that name is the most common use, such that if a user searches on "Thriller album" that they should land on that page, or not. That system of disambig otherwise appears to be working. --MASEM (t) 23:36, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
We went through this a few months ago at Talk:Nirvana_(band)#Requested_move, where it makes much more sense to approach disambiguation in a more layered format instead of a flat model. The religious concept is the primary topic of the term "nirvana", we'll call that "I" (like an outlined list). Now we have multiple Nirvana bands to deal with, but by every measurable and rational standard, Kurt Cobain's Nirvana is quite a bit more notable than the UK folk genre Nirvana. So making them a "A" and "B", e.g. "Nirvana (US band)" and "Nirvana (UK band)" is IMO undesirable as one is clearly the "primary band". The Seattle band stays at "Nirvana (band)", the UK one disambigs to "Nirvana (UK band)".


I. Nirvana
A. Nirvana (band)
1. Nirvana (UK band)
2. Nirvana (Norwegian (band)


Tarc (talk) 20:02, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
IMO, that is also an acceptable outcome (though for consistency with WP:SONGDAB, I'd prefer to see the article renamed to the more qualified title and leave the shorter "(band)" title as a redirect, much as it currently is with Thriller). But especially when there are only two entities to disambiguate and one of them is universally more well-known by an overwhelming margin, there is plenty of leeway to ignore rules. olderwiser 20:09, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

Does policy cover a situation like this?

Say I own columbushawaii.com and I decide to add that to the external links section of the article for Columbus, Hawaii (intentionally picked fictious city and website). Just based on the title of the external link, nobody would realize that it wasn't an official tourism or city website, unless someone took the time to check the link, which on a small community or city how much traffic really would go and notice this anytime even relatively soon? Could be years. Is there a specific policy or guideline, beyond normal vandalism or promotional, that covers this? What would be the difference between a Chamber of Commerce website (which is a private organization, not a government institution, which only advertises for dues paying members) and a private company that does a tourism website which requires paid advertising in order to be mentioned on the website? I think most would agree a CoC website would make it into the external links section, but I don't think the tourism website run by something other than a municipal tourism board or CVB would make the cut, or would it? And either way, why? I'd like to see actual guideline and policy !rules that show the line and not just subjective "well, this is ok, but that isn't".Camelbinky (talk) 15:40, 22 October 2013 (UTC)

You're looking at a combination of WP:COI (assuming you had some interest in promoting the commercial site) and WP:ELNO (a tourism site would fail the requirements for inclusion, since it is not information that we would otherwise include in a WP article). --MASEM (t) 15:53, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
So, I was wrong that a CoC or CVB would probably be ok for inclusion? (CVB is Convention and Visitor's Bureau, usually run by a board appointed by a city or county, or combination of both; I failed to say that originally for those unfamiliar with the term).Camelbinky (talk) 16:07, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
That's more borderline, though I would say it's probably okay given that the goal of such sites tends to be more informative and less commercial (though certain will often include direct + indirect advertising for local businesses); unfortunately, I think you're going to find this specific case falls between the cracks of policy here. If there's no official site run by the town, this would be fair replacement as long as it is run by a gov't board rather than a tourism business. --MASEM (t) 16:30, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
I do not think it is even that simple. Around the world many different arrangements apply, and tourism offices are run in different ways. In some cases they are arms of the public administrative authority, run in exactly the same way as any other department. In others not, though their status in other respects may be very similar (eg they may have a board with appointees from various interests, but not necessarily so). Leaving COI aside, because the sites may be cited by all sorts of people with no connection with the site, this has to come down to whether they are an RS. In the same way, if the link were relating to public transport the relevant site may well be funded by providers directly or indirectly, but be the only reliable source on services. A site on local history may be put together by a local interest group with no legal status. That is not to say that I am in any way sympathetic to the proliferation of commercial tourist sites offering what may be very unreliable information put together by people who may not know the place at first hand, and with many of the entries paid for by the attraction in question, but it would be very difficult to formulate a policy that did not leave a great deal to judgement. --AJHingston (talk) 16:39, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
"OK for inclusion" can mean a lot of different things in Wikipedia, e.g.:
  1. Policies/guidelines do not specifically forbid it
  2. Policies/guidelines do not lean against it. If they leaned against it, it would make it easier for someone to keep it out if there were a dispute.
  3. Policy/guidelines provide some support for inclusion, so that it would be harder for someone to remove it if there was a dispute about inclusion.
And, everywhere else is a matter of editor discretion. Could you clarify your idea in this framework? North8000 (talk) 16:49, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
BTW IMHO external link guidelines lean against inclusion but do not forbid it. North8000 (talk) 16:52, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree here - nothing specifically forbids it, but at the same type they are not the type of link we'd normally include, nor do I feel we should try to define if they are appropriate or not. --MASEM (t) 19:12, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
Agree. North8000 (talk) 19:36, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
Thank you to everyone who commented. I really appreciate the insights. I was curious about some of the external links I see on articles about cities, towns, communities and whether some of them were acceptable. This was very informative.Camelbinky (talk) 15:53, 23 October 2013 (UTC)
What everyone seems to be saying is that there is a difference between determining whether something is acceptable (or not), and determining whether it is appropriate (or not). The first determination is a matter of interpreting policy, while the latter is more a matter of using editorial judgement. Blueboar (talk) 21:26, 23 October 2013 (UTC)

Eyes wanted at CSD

See Wikipedia talk:Criteria for speedy deletion#Made-up, again and Wikipedia talk:Criteria for speedy deletion#Going forward. A new speedy deletion criterion, to be known as A11 was proposed on the CSD talk page, and after discussion implemeted. Now one editor objects to it as redundant, and as not havign a wide enough consensus, and has twice removed it from the WP:CSD page. More views would be welcome. DES (talk)

Notification of RfC: Does Wikipedia need three different CSD criterion for "No indication of importance" or should they all be merged into one?

There has been an RfC started at WT:CSD#RfC: Does Wikipedia need three different CSD criterion for "No indication of importance" or should they all be merged into one? that your participation would be appreciated at. Thank you. Technical 13 (talk) 02:08, 24 October 2013 (UTC)

Ongoing discussion about disambiguation instructions on a project page

There's an RfC open at the WP:MALPLACED instructions page that belongs to Wikipedia:WikiProject Disambiguation. should the page Malplaced disambiguation pages be given a prominent note at the top indicating that the page itself is not an official policy or guideline? Is it affected by the recommendations given at WP:Advice pages? Diego (talk) 15:23, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

Embracing Internet Censorship in the UK

Perennial proposal made. Proposal met with perennial NO. Any further "discussion" is moot-- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 20:16, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

The newly proposed Internet censorship in the UK will likely block many of the current Wikipedia articles, however, to prevent any filtering of Wikipedia(at all) I do not understand why you so blatantly refused to block all your over 18 content (You have done this around 5-10 times publicly, I am guessing I don't even need to start pointing these out). If you have some difficulty understanding/believing this, here are some links:

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/olly-lennard/why-david-camerons-intern_b_3653566.html

http://www.wired.co.uk/news/archive/2013-07/29/censorship-surveillance

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2013/08/07/cens-a07.html

http://21stcenturywire.com/2013/07/31/cameron-looks-to-china-to-supply-europes-first-internet-censorship-wall-in-britain/

http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/britains-harsh-crackdown-on-internet-porn-prompts-free-speech-debate/2013/09/28/d1f5caf8-2781-11e3-9372-92606241ae9c_story.html

So I highly recommend that enwp immediately consider a filter on wikipedia and find some volunteers to block inappropriate 18+ content!

Kind Regards — Preceding unsigned comment added by EmbracingCensorship (talkcontribs)

WP:NOTCENSORED is a policy, and I doubt you will ever be able to drum up anything resembling consensus to change it. LivitEh?/What? 16:36, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
No. postdlf (talk) 16:47, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
Even optional filters have always seemed to fail as proposals. As to the proposal... no. Chris857 (talk) 17:13, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
I'd highly recommend the UK stop its nanny policies. If you (as in any person) don't want your children (because under 18 = under 13 in reality) seeing boobies and gore, then set a password on your router, simple as that! If you don't, they're gonna explore. Public wifi hotspots sufficiently block this content as it stands. Fear breeds ignorance; education informs safety. Embrace openness. - Floydian τ ¢ 17:18, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
The answer to this is no, and will always be no, for many reasons, not least of which is: who gets to decide what content is 18+ and what isn't? Writ Keeper  17:49, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
WP:NOTCENSORED is what we follow on Wikipedia, and what happens in the Kingdom of CCTV cameras has nothing to do with how we form our policies. If the UK wants to introduce Orwellian restrictions on society to control doubleplusungood content, that is their problem, not ours. --benlisquareTCE 18:25, 25 October 2013 (UTC)

Excuse me, but don't modern encyclopedias (in paper) discuss and perhaps show material that would be censored elsewhere? Why are we even dicussing this? KonveyorBelt 01:14, 26 October 2013 (UTC)

I was just wondering, isn't UK where a major number of your servers located? Doesn't UK proudly own one of the highest numbers of high speed internet connections? Surely if content on Wikipedia were to be blocked, your popularity would reduce, you will also enjoy less traffic. Let's not forget this is enwp, while other countries in europe do have many internet users, they are less likely to be using the english wikipedia (for example: people in France are likely to be using the French Wikipedia). Anyway, why is every-one so reluctant? Think of this as an experiment of the modern era! BTW, what's wrong with the <a href> HTML tags?— Preceding unsigned comment added by EmbracingCensorship (talkcontribs)
The WMF has no servers in the UK (none at all!) for reasons not entirely unrelated to this.
As for "your popularity would reduce", well, Wikipedia content sometimes gets blocked in China as well, but we don't censor material to Chinese standards as a result. --Demiurge1000 (talk) 14:50, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
its far more likely that a public outrage against the nanny state preventing them from accessing information on sites like Wikipedia will result in changes to British law than any change of WP:NOTCENSORED. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 14:52, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Quote: "Surely if content on Wikipedia were to be blocked, your popularity would reduce, you will also enjoy less traffic" - We have never ever cared about web traffic on Wikipedia. Wikipedia was built upon the guiding principles of freedom - free content and free access, in terms of libre moreso than gratis, and freedom is the only thing we should be concerned with. Also, as a frequent contributor to the Chinese Wikipedia, let me tell you that despite threats of government blocking, we have never accepted self-censorship as a compromise or alternative. Quote: "Doesn't UK proudly own one of the highest numbers of high speed internet connections?" - I don't see your point, the German Democratic Republic also had lots of Olympic gold medals. You may as well also mention that the UK is also proudly marching towards dystopic totalitarianism under the banner of IngSoc. --benlisquareTCE 19:28, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I am really struggling to determine if this is simply a horribly misguided proposal, or simple trolling. Resolute 15:00, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
    • Unbelievable, I have cited a possible British Law with 5 news articles and you call me a troll? Is this sheer ignorance, or is it that you just can't accept it!? — Preceding unsigned comment added by EmbracingCensorship (talkcontribs) 15:20, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
      • So far as I can see, even if Wikipedia were subject to British law, the proposed (not yet passed, i gather) law would not require Wikipedia to self-censor, it would instead require ISPs to censor individual pages for thsoe who do not opt out of such censorship. One might debate if that law is a good idea (I think it is horrid) but even if one approves it doesn't appear to require Wikipedia, which is not an ISP or a carrier, to do anything. DES (talk) 15:27, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
      • Wikimedia is not beholden to UK law, so what your country passes is as irrelevant to us as the laws Iran passes. On the off-chance that you are not trolling (the username certainly argues otherwise), I think we've made this point clear: Wikimedia will not bow down to censorship. Resolute 16:32, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose censoring Wikipedia at the Behest of the UK or any other governmet or organization whatsoever. DES (talk) 15:27, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Just because I present an opposing view, you refer to me as a "vandal" and a "troll". I understand you feel strongly on this matter, but is that even a half decent reason to refer to me by those terms? EmbracingCensorship (talk) 17:44, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I would at least expect the 6th most popular website on the world wide web to give an opposing view (to mine) with justification, not just casting me aside by referring to me as a "vandal"! — Preceding unsigned comment added by EmbracingCensorship (talkcontribs) 17:46, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
The 6th most popular website on the world wide web has considered your proposal to self censor many times. The result is always a resounding NO FUCKING WAY. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 17:50, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Then you will be censored, ISPs will do the work for you....EmbracingCensorship (talk) 17:59, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Now here we have the common troll making possible legal threats. Move on visitors, nothing to see here.... KonveyorBelt 18:04, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
To be fair, i don't think this person is a troll. a POV-pusher perhaps, or let us say an advocate, but not a troll. This user apparently sincerely believes that adopting such self-censorship by Wikipedia would be a good thing. I strongly disagree, as do most here I think. But i see no reason to assume that the idea is being proposed now merely to stir up trouble, it is, after all, a perennial proposal in one form or another. I also don't see any legal threats, merely a prediction of what legal authorities may do in future. That prediction may be correct, or not, but it shouldn't change our policy, in my view. DES (talk) 18:18, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
IMO WP:FORUMSHOPPING and creating a SPA with an obvious SPA name to POV push is as close to trolling as it gets. KonveyorBelt 19:07, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Last time I checked, the U.K. was a democracy so if people don't like the censorship they can make their views known to their elected officials. The rest of us don't have to accommodate such foolishness - we have our own idiots to watch over. --NeilN talk to me 18:24, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
"Then you will be censored, ISPs will do the work for you" - good, no more Chavs shitting up Football (soccer) related articles every few months. I for one welcome the move to remove the entire nation of Britain from the internet. </sarcasm>, obviously. No point in serious replies to a potential troll discussion --benlisquareTCE 19:39, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Face-smile.svg I am a Brit, and I for two welcome the move to remove the entire nation of Britain from the internet -- it will release me from my Wikiaddiction. Joking apart, I don't seriously believe that "the newly proposed Internet censorship in the UK will likely block many of the current Wikipedia articles". This is one of those blown-up scare stories. --Stfg (talk) 20:04, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
      • Thing is, most people don't know what censorship is, nor does many people know about the current censorship. Most likely the law will just be sneaked in, then the censorship will begin. Most people won't know what it is until they tread upon a blocked website.EmbracingCensorship (talk) 20:09, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
        • This is for discussing changes to Wikipedia policies. Please take your conspiracy theories elsewhere. I think we are done here. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 20:13, 26 October 2013 (UTC)

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

Our current WP:SIZE metrics and modern technology

While some of WP:SIZE is based on readability and use, other parts of it are a result of considering technical limitations of the browser. In one example the History of Painting currently is about 100+k of prose, which ends up as 600k of raw HTML, and with about 391 image thumbs, about another 2.4 M in data or nearly 3M for totally downloading the page, which seems extremely contrary to why we have WP:SIZE; note that this is not about the actual text in that article as it does appear to be in summary style already and only tickling the 100k prose issue; it is about simply net bandwidth that the images add to that.

It has been suggested that this limit on size is antiquated, likely written back a few generation of processors and network speeds, and that modern equipment today can easily handle larger amounts of data, particularly with laptops and tablet devices. Others point out that the lowest common denominator for who may access WP may still be running lower computers, and even on computers from last year, pages like History of Painting run slow.

This becomes a two part question:

  • Are our size polices out of whack with the expected audience of WP? That is, should we change SIZE to be more up to date to reflect that more people have simply better systems than when SIZE was written to access WP? (I will note that SIZE is mostly about readability and navigation and that expanding it too far beyond 100k of prose may affect that)
  • Assuming SIZE is still correct in terms of expected technical capabilities, or even if it does need updating, do we need to add something about limiting the amount of images that are included with pages? --MASEM (t) 23:58, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
One thing that comes to mind is that slow connections are very much still real. If I recall User:Crisco 1492 has stated in the past that (in Indonesia) he has to often contend with a very slow connection. Heck, a lot of the US still has Internet much slower than, say, Europe. Chris857 (talk) 00:09, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
An excellent point, but there is no effective and reasonable way to change it. If we impose a blanket structure featuring, say, dropdown panels for each section a la mobile version, people that never needed the change will be angry. If we try to make such a change opt-in it will be lost among the clutter of Preferences. Thirdly, if we try to reduce page size many articles such as the aforementioned History of Painting will be abridged and not much use at all. And there is no individual workaround, unless you want a text only browser version that looks ugly. KonveyorBelt 01:07, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
The galleries could be removed, but leaving an image in each h2/h3 section or so, leaving about 30-50 images. A lot, but nowhere near the problem that 391 give, while still keeping the page visually oriented. --MASEM (t) 06:34, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
Firefox's Profiler told me it took 31 seconds, 7 megabytes and 433 GET requests to fully load History of painting on my desktop via ADSL which is speedtesting at 6 Mbits per second. Usually I get only 2 or even 1 Mbits, during office hours. Strangely the mobile version here took longer at 46 seconds with less data of 5.4 Mb. My network use never exceeded 20% of its capability but my CPU use reached 60%. This web page bloat problem is not just wikipedia, many websites have grown since the three years ago when I last measured. Even NASA, which sends almost at my network cap, has bloated, this page contains 340 KB of useful image but 660 KB of useless player CSS, JS and SWF. -84user (talk) 10:49, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
There is certainly bloat after the MediaWiki software gets done with a page (again, History is about 110k of prose, estimated 200k of characters after references are added, and ends up 600k of HTML), but that's across the board. I would assume any discussion about page size considers the issues of the MediaWiki bloat, though I have not done a random selection to see what the relationship is between prose size and HTML Size (I would suspect it has some floor value for small/stubs, but then becomes linear w/ size past that). A question to ask is what is the maximium amount of raw data (between HTML and media) that a visitor - unaware of how big a page might be - would reasonably anticipate in a download? --MASEM (t) 13:21, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
I think the History of Painting article is excessively large and uses too long galleries. It is often forgotten that our average reader spends only 4 minutes on site, while our upper prose limit is calibrated for 30-40 minutes. It is also forgotten that in many parts of the globe internet is still slow and/or expensive and pages like this affect the disadvantaged the most.--ELEKHHT 13:48, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
I don't think were trying to write for the lowest common denominator here. This is an encylcopedia, not a collection of 5 second soundbites. KonveyorBelt 18:02, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Wasn't suggesting any of that. But we need good summary style articles, not simply including everything "notable", whithout consideration of due weight. The prevalent editing ideology of "more is better" is damaging the encyclopaedia, and the size limit is too generous to lead towards quality improvement. --ELEKHHT 22:47, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
  • If there is agreement that History of Painting is too large, could you please voice your opinion there? I've been struggling convincing the main editors that there's a problem in size (as well, separatel of a non-free issue), and they refuse to accept the advice I've given. --MASEM (t) 06:32, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Another example that has been brought to my attention is List of dog breeds, which has a free image for each breed - roughly 328 images. Add to the fact that's all in a table, and that also can be seen as a problem. It would seem that to meet accessibility and size that removing the images would be the right thing to do (given that each breed is notable and has an image there). --MASEM (t) 07:20, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
An article about dog breeds without images is ridiculous. You do know we're trying to build an encyclopedia here, don't you? Your argument about limiting the size of pages is akin to requiring that editors of a paper encyclopedia cut their article size because some potential customers might have small bookcases. Content policies should drive content, not arbitrary and largely overblown technical limitations. We have provisions to split articles, but survey articles are by definition usually larger than specialised topics. Tom Reedy (talk) 17:37, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia is not paper. There are things that are readily done in a paper encyclopedia that we can't do in a digital one without harming accessibility issues. And there's a couple other options that could be done, such as splitting the list into alphabetical chunks, for example, thus allowing images to be kept, but losing any sorting functionality. The primary question is if 328 images (all free) are against our current SIZE and accessibility metrics. --MASEM (t) 17:41, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
Jesus, the literalness of those on a mission is depressing. Here, you don't seem to have read this article. Tom Reedy (talk) 18:53, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
You clearly have not read what linked to. We aim to manage content for low-bandwidth/low-powered computers, hence why we have WP:SIZE, as part of being a digital (not paper) encyclopedia. We're trying to make the content accessable across the world as per the Foundation's mission. Thus, approaches normal done in print have to be modified to work in the digital side to make them more bite-size chunks that are suitable for potential readers, not just those with the fastest machines and unlimited bandwidth out there. --MASEM (t) 20:21, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
So you don't agree with Jimbo's statement, "Imagine a world in which every single person on the planet is given free access to the sum of all human knowledge. That’s what we're doing." So the guy with the dial-up AOL account on his Sinclair determines how much knowledge can be accessed. Good to know. And "bite-size chunks that are suitable for potential readers"? WTF does that even mean? Wikipedia is a television show or a video game that has to compete for audience share? Tom Reedy (talk) 23:30, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
Did I say anything in conflict with that? I'm simply saying that the amount of information we deliver at a time (on a page) should be sized to consider that not everyone has infinite bandwidth, screenspace, and CPU power to display it. That's why, in part, there's a 100kb proseline upper limit as part of WP:SIZE. If that means large amounts of information have to be given in several different pages, then we do that, but we're not eliminating that information. --MASEM (t) 23:33, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
As I have noted earlier, the 100kb limit is honored more in the breech than in the observance. What do you think would happen if some administrators went through WP and began enforcing that limit? Answer: exactly what is happening now with your image limitation enforcement initiative. Tom Reedy (talk) 12:10, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

100KB is microscopic for 99.9999% of computer users, and the downsides of splitting an article outweigh the benefits of reducing the load time for the 1 in a million users. Further, all of the other stuff in the article (templates, images etc.) dwarfs the time needed for the the 100K. North8000 (talk) 12:31, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

POV and Sources

I am relatively new to editing WP, but have and MA so academic writing is not foreign to me, however I have questions regarding the application of guidelines. If the topic of an article is the domain of an academic specialty, and there are many books and peer-reviewed articles to use as sources then:

  1. The article's point of view should be that of the majority of the academic sources; definite statements of that POV are by definition not biased.
  2. If there are significant minority POV's within the discipline with equally valid sources, they must be included, but not given undue weight
  3. If there are fringe theories or public opinion only published in questionable sources (self-published books, magazines, blogs) they need not be mentioned at all, or summarily dismissed?

The primary example would be Evolution, which is about the science and mentions Intelligent Design only to call it pseudoscience. However there are other hot topics in the public mind that have a similar degree of scientific consensus. FriendlyFred (talk) 15:32, 26 October 2013 (UTC)

Not quite.
  1. The article's POV should be neutral.
  2. The article should first and foremost, say what the scientific consensus is.
  3. If there are debates or disputes within that consensus these should be described and attributed.
  4. If there are distinctly minority viewpoints within science, these should be described and attributed, being careful not to give undue weight.
  5. If there is a major non-scientific body of thought (say religious) that opposes or disagrees with the scientific consensus this should be described and statements attributed, in line with the size adn importance of the group(s) holding such views.
  6. If there are truly fringe views (say flat-earth supporters) they may be mentioned but usually only briefly. They may be omitted entirely, this is a matter of judgement.
At least those are my views and I think in accord with Wikipedia policy, although not always practice. DES (talk) 16:20, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
To move away from generalities, a POV tag has been placed on the article Washington Redskins name controversy. I have made most of the edits to the article, but only as a by-product of my edits to Native American mascot controversy. The latter solidly defines the use of any Indian names, images, and symbols as a form of racial stereotyping with seriously harmful effects; referencing many books written by PhD's, peer-reviewed journal articles, and resolutions by national organizations representing the social sciences, civil rights, education, and some religious groups. The mainstream press has become increasingly vocal in their opposition to the continuation of this stereotyping. This leaves only the team owners and hard-core fans in favor of keeping their names and mascots. I think the current articles are fair in covering "both sides". FriendlyFred (talk) 04:47, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

WP:TIES applying to non-English-speaking nation?

There is currently a debate over at Talk:Case Closed#Requested move about whether WP:TIES applies to an article name on a topic that has strong ties to a particular non-English-speaking nation. In this case, a work was released under one English title in Japan, but used a completely different English title when it was released in the US, Canada, and the UK. 24.149.119.20 (talk) 10:58, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

Dispute Resolution Archive

When someone goes to the trouble of taking out a DR, it's seems a little daft for that DR to be arbitrarily archived before resolution after a given time period with no way of resurrecting it other than to repeat the process. Furthermore, you can't even add a line asking for it to be unarchived once archived.Z07x10 (talk) 09:04, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

As you have already been advised, if it goes to the archive without further action, it means that you did NOT achieve sufficient new consensus for your edits. You're starting to become disruptive now with all this horse-flogging, and you have been given more-than sufficient advice on moving forward ES&L 09:33, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
So far people have failed to explain exactly why the new information from a respectable secondary source (an Airforce) should be ignored, especially when it has been verified by the official primary source and no other secondary source has verified different either through analysis or testing. Rather than continually having a go at me, how about you try find a flaw with the first sentence that I've just posted. If you can't then you must realise that's it's not me that's being unreasonable. You've turned this into something personal and ignored the facts.Z07x10 (talk) 13:24, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

Do I have to add to the article a mistaken and unsupported sentence (in my opinion) in order to balance my other sentence?

Do I have to add to the article a mistaken and unsupported sentence (in my opinion) in order to balance my other sentence?

There is a disagreement in the talk page between myself and user:pluto2012. I wrote a sentence based on few wp:rs that the Arabs started the war. he opposed this statement and deleted it . I proposed that each of us will concise his view to 1 sentence only, and add both to the article (provided that both are well supported).

He does not agree (I suspect that he does not have a RS). He ask me to write both opinions, otherwise he claims that my contribution is wp:npov. However, in my knowledge, there is no wp:rs support for the other view.

I have already posted at:

  1. the help desk. One of the replies was "It is not your responsibility to make a statement with which you do not agree, but it is your joint responsibility (you and the other person) to make sure that all significant positions taken in reliable published sources are mentioned.". I definitely accept this advice.
  2. The wp:drn but it was refused. ("This is, ... a conduct dispute with, .... DRN does not handle conduct disputes.)

What is the policy? Ykantor (talk) 18:34, 29 October 2013 (UTC)

It is not possible. This is the 6th place or times (and not the 3rd) where you put this discussion.
And the answer is still : here.
Pluto2012 (talk) 20:10, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
If there is relevant and reliably sourced content, it may be entered into the article. If others claim it is WP:UNDUE because there are other points of view, then they will need to (and it should be very easy for them to) present reliable sources showing these other points of view. The article then incorporates these other sources and then all of the major points of view are then be presented. Claims that one reliable source's view is not representative without providing sources to show the existence of other views do not stand up. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 01:50, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Thank you. You helped me a lot. I will un delete my RS supported contribution, and of course accept any other view (provided it is well supported). Ykantor (talk) 17:30, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Im confused that dispute resolution, which is supposed to handle small content disputes says this is a conduct dispute. If Pluto, as I suspect, is being obstinate with a "I don't hear you" attitude and wants to remove RS information based on "I don't like it" without being able to provide RS for an opposing view then admin assistance might be needed to prevent something like an edit war from occurring and to allow properly sourced material to remain.Camelbinky (talk) 14:29, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
I don't like your comment Camelbinky. You didn't even read this.
(Ok : I see).
Pluto2012 (talk) 10:09, 1 November 2013 (UTC)

Decline in number of editors must mean a decline in standards for admins as well

post by banned user

So, many have pointed out to me that Wikipedia has lost over a third of its editors since 2006. I think the accepted figure is a decline from 50,000 active editors in 2006 to now 35,000 in 2011. Perhaps the number is even smaller today. If the number of editors in Wikipedia is shrinking, and there are fewer people to regulate, shouldn't the standards for administratorship be reverted to what they were about ten years ago, when Wikipedia was a smaller place? How does that work? Odeon guy (talk) 18:35, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

Seeing as how many of these administrators have been personally responsible for the editor-attrition that you mention, I would say no. Joefromrandb (talk) 03:12, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

New User Frustration -- Cracks in the system.

I found an interesting "slip between the cracks" situation between three different policies and the supporting software here:

The Situation: A user wants to stop posting by IP and get a username, but finds the desired username (User:De Nada) is available but is too close to an existing username (User:Denada). A little digging discovers that the existing username is not active, having only four edits on a non-English wikipedia all on a single day in 2009.

User also wishes to exercise their right to register without exposing their private email address to Wikipedia.

QUESTION: What policy allows the user to get his/her desired outcome?

Policy 1: WP:IMPERSONATE -- The correct policy would seem to be WP:IMPERSONATE (Similar Names) except that this policy/software interface requires a mandatory email address which is not required otherwise.

Policy 2: WP:USURP -- Because the too close name is not actively being used the next logical solution would be to request to usurp the name. Here the policy/software demands the user either sign-in or provide an SUL confirmation link. As neither of these apply to this circumstance (user has neither an account nor an SUL link) the software rejects the request and advices the user that since the desired name does not exist they should use...

Policy 3: WP:CHUS -- This policy requires the user to provide the old and the new (desired) usernames. Because the user is currently IP only the software requires a login to process the request, which of course is not possible. Catch-22.

It seems the only logical process is for the user to

(1) create a throw-away account name like User:TEMP-Denada ...

then ...

(2) request usurp of User:Denada to replace User:TEMP-Denada ...

then ...

wait (backlog is a few days apparently) ...

then ...

(3) request rename of User:Denada to User:De Nada ...

then ...

wait up to a few more days.

Doesn't seem right to me. Comments? 66.97.209.215 (talk) 20:24, 25 October 2013 (UTC)

The USER has placed unusual constraints on the solution (e.g. insisting on having one particular user name which is very close to an existing one) self-creating a dilemma. They can solve it by just picking a different name. North8000 (talk) 20:55, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
Or after creating an account with any name, the user can just request a username change to User:De Nada at WP:CHUS. Usernames can be changed to similar names to existing accounts so nothing has to be done with the inactive User:Denada. PrimeHunter (talk) 22:32, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
Account creations uses this flow chart in instances mentioned above. Mlpearc (powwow) 15:19, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
there are plenty of places where the user could create free a throwaway one-use e-mail account without revealing any personal e-mail. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 15:28, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
Is there an actual software block from registering User:De Nada? I'm sure that if you can create it, a simple statement on the user pages of "This user is unrelated to User:Denada." would suffice. - Floydian τ ¢ 17:13, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
North8000: The user had no way of knowing the other name existed when they ran afoul of the WP procedural glitch. It is hardly a "self-creating dilemma" to desire a personal and unique identity within the community. 66.97.209.215 (talk) 21:36, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Floydian: Yes, the WP software actually creates red error messages as described above. 66.97.209.215 (talk) 21:36, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Based on most of the comments above it seems that the point of my post was missed... that being the issue of new user frustration. There is an old axiom in volunteer organizations: "Members always need a good reason to be involved, they do not need any reason to walk away." Volunteers should never be handed a reason to walk away.
  • The first prong of that frustration is that this situation is not covered by existing documentation and there is no clear guidance for new users on this case. By the time the user determines that the documentation does not exist he/she will likely walk away, having lost the excited motivation that prompted them to try and join.
  • The second frustration prong is that WP already has a huge learning curve as-is and anything that does not absolutely need to be a frustration for new users ought (IMHO) to be eliminated/simplified/streamlined. In this case that means the catch-22 process flow.
Why should a user who is trying to do the most basic thing (get an account) necessary to become a recognizable contributing member of the WP community be asked to independently decipher a cryptic process and then jump through hoops that other account applicants are not required to jump through? A new user who might be a valuable contributor (such as a busy academic or professional) may very well take such a "first experience" and decide they don't need to participate in an organization that can't easily resolve such a simple matter.
I propose that the account creation process needs have this situation incorporated into the flowchart and the software adjusted accordingly. Where and how would such a proposal be submitted within WP? 66.97.209.215 (talk) 21:36, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I guess my big question is why you believe an editor has some sort of right to the user name of their choice? As I understand USURP, it seems to have been made to allow an established editor to claim their username from an inactive user across wikimedia projects, where those names are in conflict. Everywhere else on the internet, when your preferred username has already been taken, you have to choose another one. WP allows one exception for people who contribute under a username at other WM projects to have a chance to keep their username through the unified login, but otherwise, why should WP act any differently than any other website? VanIsaacWS Vexcontribs 22:41, 3 November 2013 (UTC)

Selection of Electoral Commission for 2013 ArbCom elections

Per the 2013 ArbCom Election RfC, the selection of the Electoral Commission overseeing the 2013 ArbCom election is currently taking place at Wikipedia:Requests for comment/Arbitration Committee Elections December 2013/Electoral Commission. Editors are invited to comment there until 23:59, 6 November 2013. Cheers. 64.40.54.186 (talk) 03:16, 2 November 2013 (UTC)

Deprecate PROD, close unchallenged AfDs as delete without prejudice

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

I propose that the Wikipedia:Proposed deletion process be deprecated. Instead, uncontroversial deletion nominations will be submitted to AfD like any other article. At the same time, the handling of AfD nominations which draw little input and no objections will be changed. These nominations will be closed as PRODs traditionally have been: they will be deleted, but may be undeleted by request without the need for a deletion review.

To gather input, I'll be linking this discussion from WT:PROD, WT:AFD, WP:AN, and WT:DP.

Pros of change.

  1. Process is consolidated. There will be less pages for editors and admins to watch and one less twist in the maze for new users to navigate as they figure out how the deletion process functions.
  2. Drive-by tagging/untagging of PROD articles is no longer a problem. Spurious and non-arguments can be discounted at AfD, but severely interfere with PRODs.
  3. The low-visibility, underlinked articles which make up the majority of PROD nominations are more likely to receive attention from the community by AfD listing than they are at present.
  4. AfD nominations which do not draw attention no longer need to be relisted for additional input.

Cons of change.

  1. Slight additional work for nominators of pages that would have been successful PRODs.
  2. In theory, it may take an extra couple days to close pages that would have been successful PRODs. (In practice, PROD regularly has a backlog.)
  3. Listing current PRODs on AfD might drown out those AfD nominations requiring major discussion.
  4. If anyone thinks of another salient objection, I'll list it here.

Looking over the last week of expired AfD nominations, it appears that this change would effect approximately 10% of current AfD nominations, based on counting those which have drawn no or very little (but unanimously pro-deletion) community input.

Note that this proposal does not for the moment touch WP:BLPPROD, as that process serves a somewhat different purpose. --erachima talk 17:32, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

  • Support Yeah, actually. I expected to oppose because I don't see PROD as necessarily broken, but I do dislike relisting AfDs without participation, since they're evidently uncontroversial. If we can all agree that an article can be deleted without objections if it's been tagged for deletion for a week, PROD does become a bit redundant. And the more I think about it, the more I dislike BLPPROD. With the importance we place on BLPs, we give unreferenced ones more time than a usual PROD? But I agree, that's a separate question. --BDD (talk) 17:55, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment The idea is plausible, and if at the time PROD was developed, this had been suggested as an alternative, it would have made a lot of sense. But I don't see any need to take PROD out of people's toolkits now that they know it. As a counterproposal, why not just add this procedure to AfD, without trying to get rid of PROD for the moment? Maybe a line noting the new procedure could be added to the PROD message in a small font, so that people know it's there, and after six months or a year, reassess which one is working better. --Trovatore (talk) 18:01, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support But with a gradual deprecation, like over a few months, as to make sure there's no edge cases (things that might be at a CSD cusp that presently ppl PROD for that really should be CSD). --MASEM (t) 18:07, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose I feel the Prodding process gives more time for an article to be improved as not everyone has the time to put in to make an AfD deadline (those who work or have college ect...). I would go over Wikipedia talk:Proposed deletion/Archive 1 to see why the process was put in place before we talk about getting rid of it. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 18:20, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
    • Isn't PRODing and AFD the same 7 day length? Yes, more contentious AFDs can be relisted or go on for past that, but we're still talking about the same core 7 days to respond at the start. --MASEM (t) 18:36, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
      • Prodding allows an editor to deprod an article and place an under construction tag on it instead to improve the article over a period of time. An AfD lasts 7 days and can be full of people who are gung ho on the article's deletion. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 19:08, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
        • That can be achieved just as well from AfD, by userfying. Userfying has the advantage that an article that's unready for mainspace doesn't occupy mainspace. The problem with deprod-and-I'll-improve-it-sometime is that it can be a way to kick a problem article into the long grass. --Stfg (talk) 11:34, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose, at least as currently written. In part, I agree with Knowledgekid87's comments just above. But more importantly this says that "AfD nominations which do not draw any objections ... may be undeleted by request without the need for a deletion review". If this means, as it appears to, that when an AfD results in a consensus to delete so clear that no one objected to deletion, it would be undeletable at will, but if 30 people gave policy-based reasons to delete but one objected on an ILIKEIT basis, a Deleteion Review would be required, that is a perverse result. If "which do not draw any objections" was changed to "on which no one but the nominator comments" or some similar wording, that would avoid this probably unanticipated result. DES (talk) 18:31, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
    By the way, my memory is that PROD was created largely to ease the burden and backlog at AfD, to avoid burying matters that require discussion under many cases that may not be speedy deletion candidates, but that no one seriously wished to retain. DES (talk) 18:31, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I've rephrased the proposal to clarify intent there: only no-response or unanimous AfDs that would currently be treated as having too few responses to be decisive would be treated as prods. --erachima talk 19:44, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • That's broadly my recollection as well. I agree with the principle of merging the two deletion streams (and indeed we should think about the non-urgent speedy-deletion candidates, which are really "prods no-one can argue with"), but I think anything that adds a large amount of entries to AFD may simply serve to make AFD clunkier. Andrew Gray (talk) 18:37, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Neutral On the one hand I'm opposed to removing the PROD relief valve for deletions as they are the ones that attention has been attempted to be flagged down for and not enough improvement has occured. At the same time I do support the idea of limiting relisting to 1 time and defaulting to delete on ones that are poorly discussed. WP:UND would need instructions letting them know that a poorly discussed AFD is to be treated as a contested prod and give the editor who launched the AfD nomination a nudge that the article has rose from the grave. Hasteur (talk) 19:01, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • (mostly) Oppose - The biggest problem is that this runs the risk of drowning out the AFDs that actually need discussion with a bunch of uncontroversial ones. Based on the number of AFDs that get relisted multiple times with almost no comments we need to be using PROD more not less. The other problem is that this makes it harder to object to deletion. With PROD, you do not need a reason to remove the tag, by doing so you're only saying that you object, so it needs discussion. It's "Keep if anyone objects." At AFD you have to actually provide a reason for keeping. It's "Keep if people can provide a reason," which is really a substantially higher standard. The only part I would support is "AfD nominations which do not draw attention no longer need to be relisted for additional input." If no one comments on an AFD after 7 days, we should go ahead and treat it like a PROD unless an admin thinks it does need wider discussion. Mr.Z-man 19:02, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose The prod system works quite well. Right now there are 276 prods and 433 AFDs. And there already is a backlog of four days at AFD. Adding 276 articles (assuming that's an ok average per week) would increase the backlog and drowning out AFDs that do need discussion. To treat AFDs without comments as prods could actually work. Garion96 (talk) 19:15, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Wikipedia has bigger issues to address, there's no need to be "fixing" what isn't broken. - The Bushranger One ping only 19:19, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per The Bushranger, and because this is basically the same thing under a different label. --Rschen7754 19:22, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Semi-support the proposal about uncommented AfDs. It seems good if these can be terminated without prejudice in a neo-Prod manner; it would need a different deletion log message from the closing admin though, and possibly also change to the Bot that tags re-created articles as previous AfD? But I also foresee the problematic sequence (a) New article on someone's new e-book (b) Prod (c) Prod removed by creator (d) AfD (e) No discussion in 7 days so neo-Prod close; the likelihood is that the person who removed the Prod at (c) will just (f) recreate the article; what then - onto a 2nd cycle through AfD again, or a rule that an article cannot have 2 neo-Prod closes? AllyD (talk) 19:33, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose I was in support of this but User:Knowledgekid87 swayed me. I am still in support of the proportion of the proposal where uncontested AfD discussions would be treated as PROD's. Ryan Vesey 19:38, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Prod is nice and simple so that new people and IPs can use it without problem, whereas AFD needs ability to create a page in the correct format and link and transclude it in the right place, at least 4 times as complex. Secondly it should be the unsupported AFDs that are deleted without prejudice for restore not the unopposed. If deletion requests are opposed that should make it less likely to delete and more likely to restore later. Since we already can treat unsupported AFDs this way there will be no benefit to our readers by having this. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 19:50, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Neutral - I already close uncontested AfDs of articles without a prior contested PROD as soft deletions. I'm not sure what this proposal aims to change to the current procedure, nor why it really wants to change anything. ☺ · Salvidrim! ·  19:57, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • (edit conflict) Oppose per most above - no need to increase the backlog at AfD even further. I'm not an admin so I don't know how bad the PROD backlog generally is, but in the past months AfD has had up to a week's worth of backlog. PRODs are meant for unambiguous cases, where a deletion discussion is deemed unnecessary - though they are often removed for non-deletion policy reasons (there's one suggestion that could be made, a PROD can only be removed if either a policy-based reason is given or it's taken to another deletion venue). Also, IIRC AfDs without enough participation can already be closed as WP:Soft delete, the equivalent of an uncontested PROD; it just takes longer (up to 3 relists, so a whole month at times), and sometimes it's not the best course of action to treat them as PRODs, especially when the nominator proposes a possible alternative (usually redirect, transwiki, or userfy) - that's part of why it takes so long, so that others can weigh in on the alternatives. Ansh666 19:59, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Bushranger. Beyond My Ken (talk) 20:40, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose getting rid of PRODs, as they are a one-click step for brushing away things that are not likely to need full AfD treatment. Like others above, though, I do like the idea of treating uncontested AfDs as PRODs. bd2412 T 20:48, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose even though the thought behind it is reasonable, and I agree Ryan Vessy that we probably ought to treat uncontested AFDs as unchallenged PROD nominations, instead of the repeatedly relisting them as we see today. However, I agree with the well articulated point made by Knowledgekid87 that we should not lose the advantages with the current process. Sjakkalle (Check!) 20:51, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. There's nothing wrong with the current PROD process, and it will only cause confusion to merge it with AFD given that it means something different to delete something at AFD versus deleting it through a PROD. We should generally expect some kind of quorum (even if only a couple more than the nominator) to close an AFD as "delete". An "uncontested" AFD may also be an unsupported AFD, in which case no action should be taken, as the default action in an AFD is to keep where there is no consensus (or clear policy requirement) to delete. This change would erode that. postdlf (talk) 21:27, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. PROD does a good job of deleting junk about which nobody cares, and that's essentially its only purpose. As noted above, this would make it much harder for people who aren't logged in, and thus make it a lot more work for us to create AFDs for them. I agree that the underdiscussed AFD should be closed as "soft delete" as the nominator proposes, but deleting the PROD system wouldn't be helpful. Nyttend (talk) 21:48, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose deprecation of PROD, support suggestion for uncontested AfDs. AfD already doesn't get enough input. Adding to the traffic there is not something we really need to do. If a junk article was created by a drive-by editor, but is not technically speedy eligible, PROD fills this gap nicely. If the deletion becomes in any way controversial, any editor who objects, including the article's original creator, may stop the proposed deletion process and demand that a full discussion be had, and once that happens, the article must go to AfD if deletion is still desired. Even if the article has already been deleted via PROD, any editor may request an uncontested undeletion. Let's treat uncontested AfD nominations as consensus by silence, without losing the advantages PROD provides. Seraphimblade Talk to me 23:15, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose AfD nomination is much more cumbersome especially for relatively new users, AfD closing is more work than just deleting prodded articles. We increase the bureaucratic load without much of a gain Alex Bakharev (talk) 23:56, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose as there needs to be a middle ground option between CSD and AfD, not everything is a clearcut CSD candidate, and there are many that don't need to be full fledged AfD discussions. Technical 13 (talk) 00:34, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Semi-Support : Oppose the deprecation of PROD process and Support the idea of treating unchallenged AfDs (1st nomination) as PROD.--Vigyanitalkਯੋਗਦਾਨ 06:45, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose - PROD serves a useful purpose for articles that don't technically fit CSD but yet would still be pointless to go to an AfD. Its use is not controversial as any editor may undo it at any time for any reason, including no reason. AFAIK any expired PROD can be restored per WP:REFUND anyway. Ritchie333 (talk) (cont) 09:48, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support removing PROD, which is a dangerous and failed non-process, oppose treating uncontested AfDs as uncontested PRODS. Apart from clear-cut CSD cases, nothing should be removed without a proper explicit consensus.--cyclopiaspeak! 10:26, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Just because an article hasn't had anyone notice it in a week who feels like arguing in an AFD, doesn't mean it should be deleted. You have people who nominate articles for AFD that have ample references in them clearly proving the subject is notable, and also a problem with some who go around mass nominating everything in sight for deletion, not letting up even if half their nominations end in "keep". If they can't find even one person to show up and participate in the AFD with them, despite the use of Wikiprojects to bring people to nominated articles of types that interest them, then just leave it open. If after two weeks you still have no one bothering to participate, then close it as no consensus, or leave it open another week. Surely you can find someone to patrol articles that have been extended for more consensus. I'll start a proposal below to have a bot find articles where no one commented but the nominator after a week, since that will help solve this problem. Dream Focus 15:48, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Weak support (2nd preference) I prefer the first alternative (retain PROD mechanism, delete uncontested AFDs). --Stfg (talk) 11:48, 25 October 2013 (UTC)

Alternate proposal with this in mind

I like the idea of unchallenged AfDs being closed like PRODs. Part of the backlog at AfD is due to the relisting, where often things are relisted twice due to zero debate or discussion. Why not instead amend AfD to be deleted as uncontroversial if there's no debate or discussion on the matter after the requisite time frame? We can leave PROD as working as is (because it works), and fix the backlog problem at AfD at the same time? Thargor Orlando (talk) 22:17, 16 October 2013 (UTC)

How would you deal with an article that has already been deprodded then listed at AFD without further comment, or an article that was previously AFD'ed and then nominated a second time, again without further comment? Resolute 22:37, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
I like the idea as well. As for Resolute's question... I would delete... as silence means no one opposes the nomination's rational. Blueboar (talk) 23:38, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
But as pointed out in the section above, silence could also mean nobody supports the nomination, but seeing how battlegroundy AfDs can seem nowadays they don't wish to get involved. AfDs with no participation are IMO better relisted so that there is more exposure. Ansh666 23:58, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
If people don't support the nomination, they can go and express their opinions at AfD. A reason for the backlog as well is a lack of participation, so if we have a few people noting a keep, great, the article will be kept. Otherwise, DRV isn't overburdened either. Thargor Orlando (talk) 00:10, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
Battlegroundy? I just skimmed throught the log from October 5, 36/59 (61%) appeared to no more than 3 comments other than the nom and 20 were relisted at least twice, mostly due to lack of comments. If that's what passes for a battleground now, we've really made some major improvements in the civility of discussions. When the majority of discussions get almost no discussion after 2-3 weeks, the problem seems to be more apathy than hostility. Mr.Z-man 16:34, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support - seems like a good proposal to me Alex Bakharev (talk) 23:56, 16 October 2013 (UTC)
  • (edit conflict) Oppose per my reasoning above and in previous section. Ansh666 00:13, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per reasoning above, also while just an essay WP:SILENCE can be kept in mind when closing deletion discussions. - Knowledgekid87 (talk) 00:21, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I am extremely baffled how anyone can support keeping PROD as-is but not support deleting unopposed AfD noms. It's the exact same thing, except that AfD nominators are held to a stricter standard and their would-be-deletions better advertised. --erachima talk 00:38, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I obviously support this suggestion, since I suggested the broader form above. It would significantly reduce backlog, since by my count ~10% of AfDs end up with less than three responses, all (if any) of which favor deletion. --erachima talk 00:38, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support- good idea. Reyk YO! 00:45, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I support the concept, but I am concerned about cases where an article is deprodded (indicating oppsition to deletion) and then having no discussion at AfD. It makes sense that uncontested AfDs should be default to delete, but a contested prod should be listed at AfD as such, and not default to delete. --NickPenguin(contribs) 03:54, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. I supported this above, and I support this here. As with the PROD process, the administrator who comes to close the uncontested AFD is, as anyone else, allowed to contest the deletion at his or her own discretion. Sjakkalle (Check!) 05:12, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose - an AfD with no or next to no participants should be closed as "No consensus" and kept, not deleted. Ritchie333 (talk) (cont) 09:48, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
    • I'd say this is true unless there is consensus (I'd say 2-3) for a non-keep action - I NAC'd one today (or technically yesterday by my time zone) as merge with only 2 participants but there was a pretty strong idea of where it should end up. Ansh666 09:56, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support Fulfils the same purpose as a PROD anyway and avoids the endless relisting of AfDs that noone is commenting on.--KorruskiTalk 10:05, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. One of the most dangerous ideas I've ever seen. The exact opposite should happen: PROD should be removed, and no consensus AfDs should stay that way. We need more discussion to remove material, not less. --cyclopiaspeak! 10:28, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support One of two things will happen at a deprodded AfD. Either the person who deproded will have to back up their argument for keeping the page and a discussion can happen, or they wont and their original de-prod was nothing more than an exercise in wasting volunteer time. Having to go through 2 and 3 weeks of re listings is an indication that there's no editors who are willing/able to address the issues raised in the AfD/Prod but are willing to be obstructionist blocks. Hasteur (talk) 13:07, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
and their original de-prod was nothing more than an exercise in wasting volunteer time. - This is a serious misunderstanding of PROD. It is meant to be for uncontested deletion. If an editor contests, for any reason, they are wasting nobody's time, they're exerting their right to contest the deletion. --cyclopiaspeak! 13:24, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
You are correct, Cyclopia, a PROD is for deletions that no one objects to, and any objection by anyone, for any reason or none, is enough to stop it. However, If the objector in unwilling to show up at an AfD started in response to his or her objection and support that objection with reasons, then it seems that the objection was perhaps not very serious, and the result is the same deletion after additional volunteer time has been spent and some delay has occurred. DES (talk) 15:29, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support, though I would treat an uncontested AFD as equivalent to a PROD where deletion can be quickly overturned on request, without the need to go to DRV. Resolute 13:13, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support, pretty much with Resolute's caveat. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 13:46, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. An AfD that no one comments on is an AfD on an article that no one cares about. Asserting an opinion in an AfD is as easy as removing a PROD tag, so an AfD where no opinion is asserted in favor of keeping the article at issue should be taken as unanimous consent for deletion. bd2412 T 15:35, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support per my comments on the previous proposal. Mr.Z-man 16:34, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support I've noticed consensus heading this way for a while now, and it would be great to put an end to the practice of uncontested AfDs languishing for three weeks before getting a soft delete. I think any such deletions would have to be considered soft (i.e. subject to refunding), but this really addresses the concerns of supporters of the original proposal, such as myself. I think we could (almost) all be happy with this solution. --BDD (talk) 23:43, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose The deletion guidelines for admins say emphatically, When in doubt, don't delete. If there hasn't been any comment then obviously doubt exists. This will be especially the case if the nominator doesn't seem to have followed WP:BEFORE by searching for sources and telling us what he found or didn't find. I have wondered for some time whether I should try responding to all AFDs but currently I just respond to the ones that seem to have merit. This makes me look like a crazed inclusionist but it has seemed too much of a chore to look at all the junk too. This proposal will tend to encourage cookie-cutter responses to cookie-cutter nominations and that doesn't seem healthy or efficient. Warden (talk) 10:04, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
I share that last concern. The argument that it takes very little effort to respond to an AfD encourages ill-considered responses. I vote to delete as often as to keep, but I try to so meaningfully and if not from my own knowledge, after some research. The more specialist or seemingly obscure the subject the more necessary that will be. I've not heard of it or I'm not interested are and should be irrelevant to Wikipedia - it is there precisely for the things we do not know about just as much or more than the things covered on the Discovery Channel or adequately dealt with elsewhere on the internet. It seems to me that those articles which require the most attention in the process are precisely those where nobody has felt able to give a reasoned opinion, but that necessarily means allowing time. --AJHingston (talk) 10:42, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
The guidelines also say to use common sense. How sensical is it that a PROD uncontested for 7 days is deleted but an AfD, which is brought to wider attention, with no objection is kept? Mr.Z-man 13:29, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
Because deletion via PROD has different consequences than deletion via AFD. postdlf (talk) 16:47, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
I interpreted this proposal to mean that an AFD with no comments is treated like a PROD, which also means it can be undeleted on request. Mr.Z-man 18:11, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
And then we have a whole class of "AFDs" that are not really AFDs because they have none of the usual effect or meaning. Thus complicating G4 speedy deletions, the applicability of DRV, even simply reading the deletion log for a page... postdlf (talk) 21:08, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
So we have to make slight changes to 2 or 3 pages instead of 1 and admins may have to actually look at the AFD discussion instead of just the deletion log. Heaven forbid. If the nominator of a no-comment AFD had used PROD instead of AFD, the article would be deleted. Saying that we should treat the exact same scenario completely opposite depending on the process someone chose to use is completely illogical. Mr.Z-man 01:30, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
I understand this. The problem is that there is no doubt in an unopposed AfD, and if the admin opposes it, the admin can simply comment as a user and call for a keep, leaving it to another admin. The process works. Thargor Orlando (talk) 16:20, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose - lack of participation should be closed as no consensus; another idea would be to close the AFD with a PROD, deleting it after 7 days with no opposition. BOZ (talk) 12:04, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Oppose for same reason I opposed the section above. Lack of notice for a week doesn't mean an article deserves to be deleted. My bot proposal would solve this problem rather effectively. Dream Focus 15:54, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose, silence does not equal consent where the longstanding rule at AFD is that an article is kept where there is no consensus to delete, and so the failure to comment or !vote "keep" may simply be in reliance on that rule if they see no one is supporting the nomination. And this will also weaken AFD by causing more confusion as to which ones merit enforcement through speedy deletion or should stand until overturned at DRV, or will essentially create a more binding version of PROD if treated like an ordinary AFD deletion close.

    I also don't buy the backlog argument, as the AFDs that cause the most closing difficulty are not those with little participation but rather those with the most participation and most disagreement. And even assuming there are a lot of zero participation AFDs clogging up the logs that we don't want to relist, it would clear those logs just as well to automatically close them as "no consensus" as to automatically close them as "delete". Either way, they're closed.

    So we already have on occasion AFDs with no participation closed as delete, and tolerate that to some extent depending on the content. What will we have once we have an express rule providing for that? If the speed limit is 25 mph, most drivers will push that to 30. If you raise it to 30 to match practice, then you'll just have drivers going 35 or even 40. postdlf (talk) 16:47, 18 October 2013 (UTC)

  • Support: If only the nominator votes to delete, it should be closed as delete. pbp 15:29, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
  • oppose to quote PB above "silence does not equal consent where the longstanding rule at AFD is that an article is kept where there is no consensus to delete". Creates too much of a way to game the system--just keep nominating things and see what no one notices. Hobit (talk) 22:01, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
But they will all be noticed because an admin will have to take the actual delete action. Admins thinking of closing a 0-!vote AfD might just need to take a bit more responsibility for checking that it's not a totally egregious deletion. If it is, all they need do (as someone mentioned above) is add their own !keep vote and then leave it to another admin to (most likely) extend as no-consensus.--KorruskiTalk 11:41, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
If that's so, then they could also add a "delete" !vote if they felt it should be deleted. Our default is to keep things and I see no good reason to change that. Hobit (talk) 18:38, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
I am okay with BOZ's suggestion (assuming the article hadn't had a PROD before). Might be a reasonable compromise and the tools folks use at AfD could have that option added. Hobit (talk) 18:41, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support this will make it easy to decide to delete stuff that no one else can be bothered to talk about, and also easy to undelete. Also G4 will not be permitted for this type of unsupported delete as there was not actually a consensus. Graeme Bartlett (talk) 12:12, 21 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support Treat it like a prod. If the reviewing admin doesn't agree it should be deleted, they are free to !vote keep instead of deleting. I would also see no problem with re-listing first, then voting keep, as a simple matter of expediency, it skirts the Involved rule a bit, but in the context shouldn't be an issue. Monty845 17:22, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. Unchallenged AfDs being treated like PRODs, being SOFTDELETEd. I might prefer "unchallenged" to be changed to "unquestioned". In the case of a dePRODed article, or an article that previously (long previously) survived AfD, I would expect that all previous PROD/AfD participants, and all article & its talk page major authors be notified (here presuming that there are few such authors), and then start counting seven days. The nominator must have explicitly requested deletion. The closer must apply their judgement. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:20, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support per SmokeyJoe. When it comes to comments like When in doubt, don't delete, I don't see that as a problem here. If a closing admin has doubts they can elect to close as keep, no consensus to delete or something other then delete. So that's always two opinions that a delete is reasonable. Vegaswikian (talk) 00:31, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • If the closer has doubts, the closer should be encouraged to !vote instead of closing. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 01:05, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support PROD isn't broken; this helps AfD. --Stfg (talk) 11:50, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. This is a PROD idea. If an article has come to AfD, it is assumed that it doesn't meet the criteria for PRODing. There is no rush. Let it be relisted. I have seen a number of articles that gathered enough support to keep at AfD after being relisted due to lack of initial comments. Lack of comments often suggest that the article under discussion is difficult to assess, rather than being so blatantly obvious that no one thought to comment. SilkTork ✔Tea time 13:20, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • But many were PRODable. Can these be deleted as if they were PRODded, or should they be converted to a fresh PROD? I don't think so many are hard to assess so much as uninteresting to assess. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 20:58, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support this 100% for sure. It makes NO sense whatsoever that a PROD, if uncontested for a week, is deleted, while an AfD, if uncontested for a week is re-listed over and over until enough people take pity on it and !vote delete. This proposal treats a no-!vote AfD just like a PROD, and this makes sense. Articles at AfD get more attention than articles with the PROD tag on them, so it makes sense that if nobody can bother to !vote on a page at AfD then the deletion is uncontested. LivitEh?/What? 15:52, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose This is a reversal of the established policy, where AfDs which even after several relistings have no discussion are almost always closed as non-consensus. There's a good reason for it: if at least two WPedians aren't prepared to say an article should be deleted, it probably shouldn't be. "Nobody seems immediately interested" is not a reason for deletion. Examining AfD, a substantial number of AfDs that are not responded to the first week are responded to later, and closed as keep or merge or no consensus. What seems to happen is people look at the interesting ones first, and eventually someone out of a sense of duty looks at the others. The community does make a judgement on these, it just doesn't do so at the first pass. Prod works because people don;t usually nominate unless it's almost certain to be deleted. I and most other admins who review Prod routinely deprod articles and send them to AfD for future discussion, and basically only delete if we ourselves agree wholeheartedly with the nominator. With Prod, I and many admin and non-admin patrollers do not wait until the last minute to say that something would be better sent to afd--with this resolution, unless it was accepted that someone could relist earlier than 7 days, it would have to caught at the last minute. People in practice are much more speculative about sending articles to AfD , with many rationales amounting to, "I'm not sure about this one." If people were to use Prod for articles which are probably saving but which they hope won't be noticed, I & most of us would consider this an abuse of process. DGG ( talk ) 03:34, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

Symmetric proposal: Remove PROD, keep uncontested AfDs

PROD is a dangerous process: if nobody watchlists the article and the (very few) PROD patrollers miss it, meaningful articles get deleted, bypassing community consensus. That PROD is dangerous is proven by the fact that a significant proportion of contested PRODs end up being kept at AfD. The ratio was a bit less than 1/4 a few years ago, see User:Cyclopia/PROD_analysis - no reason to think it is getting better (see e.g. this for a very recent example). This is a lot for what a nominator expects should be uncontested deletion. When deciding what to delete, we either are in CSD territory, or we need more discussion and consensus, not less. A PROD or uncontested AfD is actually not a sign that community leans towards deleting: it means that someone wanted the article (the original author/contributors) and someone else not (the nominator), thus keep and delete are on even terms. To tilt the balance, we need explicit consensus to form. PROD and the previous proposals treat silence as consensus, which cannot be assumed as such: it may be simply the case that nobody knows enough about the subject to cast an opinion - this has consequences in terms of systemic bias, among other things.

Therefore my proposal is: remove PROD as a consensus-bypassing process, keep uncontested AfDs. --cyclopiaspeak! 10:40, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

  • Support Even assuming good faith and a sound understanding of WP policies and guidelines on the part of the nominator, and even that is unsafe, there are a good number of articles which are singled out for deletion essentially because the nom has not heard of the topic, cannot believe it is notable, or does not regard it as interesting enough for WP. Placing the onus on the original contributor to show they are wrong is not sufficient. Historical topics, ones where sources are likely to be in a language other than English, or highly specialist topics pose particular difficulties. Judging whether they should be in WP will often require particular knowledge, language skills, or off-line research. That means throwing open the discussion to as wide a range of people as possible and giving time to respond. Silence does not necessarily signify consent, it may just be that others are too busy or are assuming somebody else will deal with it. --AJHingston (talk) 11:38, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment/Neutral - Having been the target of what seems to me as automatic PROD'ing of any new articles I create, I tend to agree that the process is a bit over the top in terms of the new page patrollers being way overzealous in a great many cases. I completely agree that there are some huge abuses going on, but you need to admit there is a whole lot of cruft and nonsense that gets thrown onto Wikipedia every day as well and admins can't spot all of it either. I tend to think the issue is one of education on the part of the new page patrollers (aka they need to really understand the policies involved if they are to participate in that process rather than assuming bad faith and that everything new which is added is crap) and perhaps some hard evaluation over users which seem to consistently PROD something which subsequently gets overturned in AfDs (indicating they really don't understand policies). This is a behavior issue on the part of these kind of users who are involved, not really a problem with the PROD itself. Removing the PROD process as a tool won't solve the issue, but instead will simply make other venues like the AfD become overwhelmed.
    I'd personally like to see something of a "boot camp" (or use another term like an academy) that could educate new users who might want to participate in something like new page patrols or to dig through other slush piles (like stacks of stubs or other similar sources of articles that genuinely need to be deleted mixed with other articles that need improvement and being kept) that could use some additional help. This is yeoman's work that nobody likes to do yet is necessary. Heck, go into any publishing office and I promise you will find slush piles that nobody really wants to do and they turn those stacks over to interns and new hires. Wikipedia is the same, and unfortunately those participating do burn out simply wanting to throw the whole stack into the garbage. That is the problem here and what needs to be addressed. How do you address that slush pile and find the gems of articles that really should be kept from the utter garbage that random trolls throw in as well? The AfD process, while useful, is not sufficient to deal with the crushing pile of junk being added to Wikipedia as well. --Robert Horning (talk) 12:40, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
but you need to admit there is a whole lot of cruft and nonsense that gets thrown onto Wikipedia every day as well and admins can't spot all of it either. Nobody denies that, but that is what either CSD or AfD is for. In general, I personally feel that it is better to have a page more of junk than to miss a valuable page - and I suspect our readers,in general, feel the same way. While an unnotable band promo page should be removed, it doesn't harm a lot if it stays a bit longer, if this allows to preserve valuable information. --cyclopiaspeak! 12:49, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose So everything that is desired to be deleted has to go through a AfD that has more than a singular view expressed? All you do it create yet annnother justiifcation for sock/meat puppetry. PROD is a consensus building process. 90% of the time it works as intended, and someone objects so a discussion happens. PROD establishes consensus in that successful prods are read as non-objecting. Hasteur (talk) 13:02, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. If an article is "meaningful", chances are extremely high that someone is watching it. But that point notwithstanding, there is little risk as a PROD can be contested at any time, even after deletion. The ability to restore an article deleted via PROD is as lightweight as the deletion process itself. Resolute 13:11, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose for two reasons. One, a PROD can be contested at any time. It is insanely easy to undelete a PROD, as it should be. Second, if an article can be kept at AfD, it will be. There is no dearth of people able to support an article that shouldn't be deleted. Thargor Orlando (talk) 13:11, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment : The "undeletion is easy" is a fallacious argument. In short, it is often impossible to judge the suitability of an article without looking at it. Therefore one that wants to undelete doesn't even know what to undelete, unless they were the article author. Second, articles which are about notable subjects are not necessarily highly watched, especially if they have been just created or are about obscure (which does not mean unnotable) subjects. --cyclopiaspeak! 13:18, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
    The problem with undeletion is not that it is "easy", but because it leads to wheel warring when two admins get into a fight over the content of that article. I got into such a wheel war with Jimbo Wales (yes, that guy) awhile ago, and went out of my way to explain my actions to the community and still got burned in the process. If you thought edit wars were ugly, such deletion/undeletion wars are truly epic and can rip apart the community like nothing else you can imagine. The reasons for that particular wheel war are now very much water under the bridge, but I want to point out that I completely agree with you here that undeletion is not nearly as easy of a thing to perform, and it is very difficult for non-admins to examine the content of deleted pages (although it isn't impossible thanks to some 3rd party websites that do try to keep some deleted page contents available). When a page is deleted, it might as well be dead to the community unless there are other admins very active in trying to undo the damage of rogue admins (something on Wikipedia especially is sadly rare even when abuse does happen). --Robert Horning (talk) 23:23, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Uncontested AfDs are usually articles that no one has any interest in. As Thargor Orlando mentions, we have a whole group of articles dedicated to saving articles from AfD - the proposer in fact is "a member of the Association of Inclusionist Wikipedians. The proposal is a bit confusing also - surely an uncontested AfD is one with no Delete !votes, not one with no !votes. But I agree that an AfD with no comments should be considered as a prod - "soft delete" as mentioned above. I'd say 'recreation is easy' - either by the author or someone else, and PROD is a useful process. Dougweller (talk) 13:37, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
the proposer in fact is "a member of the Association of Inclusionist Wikipedians. - Thanks for the ad hominem - the fact that I have a definite philosophy on content retention (and that I'm not ashamed of it) is not very relevant here. surely an uncontested AfD is one with no Delete !votes, not one with no !votes. Uhm, I'd say an AfD with no Delete !vote is very contested -it means that everyone is against the deletion proposal. So, if anything, both my own wording and yours are not good. Call it an uncommented AfD, if you prefer. --cyclopiaspeak! 14:30, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose That someone once created or edited the article does not allow us to conclude that that same editor would opine that it should be kept at an AfD. Note that any PROD deletion will be undone at anyone's requ3est at any time, unlike a deletion via AfD, which would generally go through deletion reveiw. I have done some article rescue work in my time, and am hardly a rampant deletionist. The result of removing the PROD provcess would be to further backlog AfD, and make it harder for people to find those deletion debates where there might actually be something worth saying, and an article worth saving. If you wanted to length the delay on PROD deletions, to say 10 days or even 2 weeks, you might have a point. DES (talk) 15:16, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
    The argument that something is either a CSD or else needs discussion is false. The speedy criteria are intentionally narrow and bright line, because speedy deletes can happy with little or no delay and with only one or two people involved. Three is plenty of junk that no one would argue for keeping, but that does not fit any of the CSD reasons. That is the territory where PROD is properly used, and where it generally works well, in my view. DES (talk) 15:21, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. PROD is a useful quick tool for clearing out the underbrush. bd2412 T 15:36, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose One way or another, if a single solitary editor won't speak up to save an article in the span of a week, it's not worth keeping. --BDD (talk) 23:45, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose- Routine maintenance and cleanup should not be made more difficult with arbitrary unnecessary roadblocks. Reyk YO! 23:48, 17 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose removal of PROD, Support treating an unopposed AfD as a successful PROD, pretty much per Seraphimblade. Jclemens (talk) 04:50, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. An uncontested AFD is much closer to consensus by silence than to a "no consensus". There is an additional barrier to deletion in that an administrator has to approve the deletion as well. If an administrator comes to an uncontested AFD and disagrees with the deletion, he or she is free to contest the AFD, so there will be at least two sets of eyes looking at it. For a few individual cases the result may be wrong, but PROD-like deletion allows for undeletion on request. Sjakkalle (Check!) 08:13, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose* even as a strong inclusionist. If nobody is watching an article it isn't being maintained, and _should_ be deleted. If a mistake is made, the article can be restored by the usual processes. --TS 09:35, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support PROD in its current form can be used to easily delete long-term notable articles such as Walter Chrysler from Wikipedia. There are tons of good articles that are poorly watched and where the editor who started them has long since disappeared. XOttawahitech (talk) 14:36, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
    I'm not going to challenge your !vote, but that is an absolutely terrible example. No admin would delete that article if a PROD tag were somehow allowed to last long enough to expire. PROD isn't a simple "seven days and delete", the deleting admin still checks the article to weigh the validity of the argument made for deletion. Resolute 23:34, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • @Resolute: You say this is a terrible example, so what would be a good one? A biography of someone who is not American? Not Caucasian? A woman? XOttawahitech (talk) 14:01, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
  • You missed the point. A PROD still requires a valid rationale, and it still requires that an administrator weigh the validity of the claim. PROD isn't log and flog. That's not to say that every deletion is done correctly, but as I noted above, undeletion pretty much only requires that someone ask the deleting admin. (And to your question above, I don't know off-hand where the documentation is, but my experience is that nearly all admins will simply undelete and refer to AFD if necessary upon request. BLP, copyvio and the like notwithstanding.) Resolute 14:33, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
  • This is exactly the point. I haven't worked on the PROD queue in some time, but I am familiar with it. With a PROD, there are always at least two pairs of eyes: The editor who requested the PROD, and the admin who reviews it once expired. There was more than one case in which I said "This isn't correct", and rather than deleting, disputed the PROD myself. At that point, someone's disagreed, and it has to go to AfD if the requester still thinks deletion is justified. We don't have a bot clearing out expired PRODs, there's someone actually looking at them. Seraphimblade Talk to me 16:46, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Mild oppose I took a look at today's Wikipedia:Articles for deletion and there are currently 40 open discussions listed under "Old discussions." I didn't see any that were empty, though I did not check all 40. The statistics seem to show a healthy close rate. How serious is the problem we are trying to solve here? A few articles that survived PROD in limbo for a couple of weeks? Maybe their natural defender is on vacation? Things don't seem that broken to me.--agr (talk) 16:41, 18 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Strong oppose: Most things that are PRODded are articles that have been unsourced for a sizable length of time, and show no indication of ever being sourced. Most also either lack significant content, or else the content was copy-pasted from somewhere else. There's no reason these articles need to go through the AfD process. pbp 16:10, 19 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. The data Cyclopia present do not appear to lead to the conclusion he offers. The fact that a substantial minority (perhaps 1 in 4) of challenged PRODs that are sent to AfD are kept does not tell us anything about the quality of articles that are deleted through uncontested PRODs. Cyclopia's statistic could be used much more convincingly to argue that editors who challenge a PROD and refer the article to AfD are mostly exhibiting reasonable judgement in selecting the articles that represent genuine 'edge' cases between deletable and not-deletable content to send to AfD for more detailed examination. (Though even that interpretation isn't bulletproof—it is not specifically enumerated how many articles were significantly and substantially improved during the AfD process, by editors who had to essentially 'start from scratch' anyway.)
    We are told that PROD is dangerous, but this analysis seems to fail to demonstrate the harm—where is the analysis and assessment of a random, unbiased sample of articles deleted through PROD? Is there a lot of good material being lost to PROD, or are erroneous/questionable PRODs of tolerable, acceptable articles being properly screened out by subsequent editors removing the PROD notice, by admins evaluating time-expired PRODs and rejecting them, and/or by diversion to AfD for further discussion? TenOfAllTrades(talk) 17:29, 22 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose If nobody can be arsed to contest an AfD, there's little prospect of the article improving, so it should go. If the intending closer thinks it shouldn't go, then simply !vote instead of closing. --Stfg (talk) 11:54, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
That's simply untrue. Often an article will sit for weeks or months, even years, as a stub (or unreferenced, or with other serious issues) before being developed. You're equating the week for a prod with the multiple years for which Wikipedia has existed and hopefully will continue to last. --Colapeninsula (talk) 14:20, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
I fail to see how an opinion can be "simply untrue". If an article is going to sit for ages with serious issues, lowering the average standard of WP, better it go for the time being and be recreated when someone is willing and able to cover it properly. Just my opinion, of course. --Stfg (talk) 14:32, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose PROD is a good process. 1)It's easy to halt in its tracks... any editor is allowed to remove the PROD tag and it's over. 2)PROD deletion is easy to revert... the process specifically allows for undeletion upon request, so someone who misses the 7 day timer, but objects to deletion, can get the article back quickly and easily. 3)PROD serves a great purpose... it's there to handle the cases where the article does not meet any of the (intentionally) very specific criteria of CSD, but also is not (in the nominator's opinion) likely to be opposed. — If it's true that a lot of de-PRODded articles end up as keeps at AfD, then to me that's just proof that the process is working. Honestly, it's WP:BRD at its best: "I boldly say this should be deleted" (PROD)... "I disagree and I revert your suggestion!" (DePROD)... "Let's discuss and build consensus!" (AfD). Heck, PROD should get a barnstar for epitomizing WP's principles. LivitEh?/What? 16:02, 25 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. If no editors, including the article's creator, are willing to save the article in 7 days' time, and afterwards does not request undeletion, then it is not worthy of keeping in even the creator's point of view. Furthermore, an administrator checks it before deleting, just as they would a speedy deletion candidate. 069952497a (U-T-C-E) 15:09, 26 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose I think we have the right balance at present; just as a default to delete would result in the loss of too much acceptable material, this would do the opposite--things would be kept just because nobody noticed immediately. That doesn't make much sense either. The current way has the right balance: things at AfD that don;t get noticed immediately get noticed later, and if there's still no resolution, they are usually closed as No-consensus, which leaves the nom open to try again a little later. Prod is at present generally used for the obvious--I and plays a role in supplementing CSD for the things that can;t be immediately specified. A few people go through it systematically checking for articles in their general field of interest and removing them or sending them to AfD. It works pretty well--there are surprisingly few request to restore prodded articles. Theo only thing that is really wrong with the deletion process is that it needs more people to participate. I hope this group of proposal will have the desired effect: getting more of us to look at prod and AfD. (But of course nobody can follow everything--In my first few years here I followed mostly AfD, then I followed NPP, then AfC; and now I skip through them all trying to pick up the taint of promotionalism. ) DGG ( talk ) 04:09, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

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

Note: Closer has been asked to review his closure. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 08:22, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

Proposal: Lists must be based on objective criteria

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

Recently, I've come across a number of lists that are completely subjective and need to be deleted. As such, I believe that WP:LISTN and the WP:NOTDIRECTORY section of WP:NOT need to contain the following wording:

"In general, a Wikipedia list article needs to be based on some objective criteria, such as people who have held a certain political office, winners of an award, or places that have received a designation."

Yes, I am aware that there are other objective criteria than the three I listed, but those three are common and representative. What I am generally going for is that lists that have a right answer for what belongs on them (and what doesn't) need to be kept, and lists that someone (be them a Wikipedia editor or a book author) just pulled out of thin air need to be deleted pbp 16:21, 30 October 2013 (UTC)

  • Support as nom pbp 16:21, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Can you give an example of those lists ? The idea is right but I know we've got wiggle room too. --MASEM (t)
  • Would, for example, List of films considered the worst be considered a list based on some objective criteria? The consideration, although objectively reported, is entirely subjective. bd2412 T 16:33, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
That's the general idea. Anything with "best", "worst", "unusual" in the title is something that policy should be crafted to avoid, at least in future lists pbp 16:36, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Oppose, then. This particular list is reliably sourced, and by the way it has been viewed over 323,000 times in the last 90 days. Obviously there are quite a few readers who find it useful for us to have such a thing. bd2412 T 19:15, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per bd2412. A sourced subjective opinion meets WP:V, and WP:NPOV is pretty clear that we are not supposed to shy away from that sort of thing. "Foo says bar is quux" is encyclopediac. "Wocka says wicka is quux" is encyclopediac. Pretty soon you have lots of things that people think are quux. Maybe even someone writes about "people are saying things are quux" in a book or journal. We might think quux is ridiculously unencyclopediac itself and/or it might be true that quux itself is a pure opinion (rather than a factual statement). But none of that matters. If sources support the label of quux and multiple items are each quux (or better, a source collects them for us) we can say that. And it's even more true if a source actually discusses quux itself as a criterion: subjective or not on the sources' part, sources establish notability and labeling. DMacks (talk) 16:45, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
This is Wikipedia, not Wikivoyage. We shouldn't have a list on "Bars that are quux". I don't think you quite comprehend all the ridiculous lists we could have based on somebody saying "Foo is quux" in print. We could potentially have thousands of random lists. Lists should be limited to things that are objective, like people who pitched a no-hitter or won the Tony Award for Best Actor. pbp 17:05, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
As of now, we only have your opinion that we shouldn't have that list, and solely based on your opinion that we should limit ourselves to objective list-topics. Care to support it by existing policies or guidelines rather than what you think WP should contain? DMacks (talk) 17:19, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Erm, this is a discussion to change policies and guidelines, so I'm not sure why I need policies and guidelines to support changing policies and guidelines. pbp 17:45, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Opppose per DMacks. I think ultimately this proposal derives from a confusion about WP:TRUTH. Further, wanting to get certain content deleted (e.g., this pending AFD nominated by PBP) is a poor reason to invent an incredibly broad prescriptive rule that, in practice, would do far more than exclude lists with those adjectives PBP dislikes. If such a rule cannot be generalized from AFD case-by-case results, then it should not be imposed from the top-down. List of films considered the worst, for example, has survived eight highly trafficked AFDs, the last one (nominated by PBP) being a unanimous keep. postdlf (talk) 17:08, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
@Postdlf:, can you give an example of something that doesn't involve "unusual", "best" or "worst" that would get deleted under this and shouldn't? pbp 17:11, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
I think the narrowness of the examples you chose of what would pass illustrate the destructive scope of such a rule: the examples are only groups with finite membership, such that our list would just be a copy of a source's list. By contrast, lists for occupations that are more general than holders of a particular office, for example, ultimately rely upon editorial judgment or consensus of sources to determine inclusion thresholds, where there is no "objective criteria" to determine how many roles or which roles make someone an "actor" or how many paintings make someone an "artist" (nor is there any "objective criteria" determining what is "art", for that matter). Then there are bibliographies or timelines, and really any list of potentially unlimited scope that we decide by consensus to limit to notable members of a group. None of those are, arguably, based on "objective criteria", and if you throw a rule out there with no actual established practice behind it, you have to expect it to be stretched to the limit its words can plausibly support. And I've seen such arguments attempted in AFDs even without the support your proposed rule would provide. postdlf (talk) 18:00, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose, if we're talking lists that are "best", "worst", etc. These are subjective terms, but nearly all of them that I have encountered has set the requirement that the qualification of "best", "worst" or whatnot comes from reliable sources, to justify inclusion. As long as we are putting the assessment on reliable sources to make the call and not WPians to do so, these are not indiscriminate lists. --MASEM (t) 17:13, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose (edit conflict) per DMacks, Postdlf, Masem et al. Cute attempt at modifying policy to get a couple AfDs the way the proposer wants. Verifiable opinions are still verifiable, and somewhat subjective concepts as "best", "worst", "unusual" are nonetheless the subject of lots of works: as such they are very much worth reporting in an encyclopedia. In any case, list articles are already based on the objective criteria that entries should be verifiable and germane. So, no issue. --cyclopiaspeak! 17:17, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose as per DMacks and others above. "Foo said X is Y" is a perfectly sufficient criterion for inclusion in a list, just as it is for making statement in X that it is Y or that "According to Foo, X is Y" depending on whether there are other sourced views on the matter. DES (talk) 17:30, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Again, I remind you of all the stuff we can end up with if we have that criteria pbp 17:45, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
And why all this mysterious "stuff" would be a problem, in your opinion? --cyclopiaspeak! 17:48, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Because it doesn't belong here. By this criteria, we could have List of bars this one restaurant columnist absolutely loathes, List of things this community activist has complained about, provided the columnist and the activist were published. The AfDs you cite aren't any better than that: they're List of films people hate, List of chemical compounds with a fart joke in them, and A curiosity exhibit of people who died (And yes, someone believing stuff does or doesn't belong IS a valid way to create Wikipedia policy). pbp 18:02, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, but "I don't like this stuff" is not exactly going to convince people to amend policy. A reasonable argument is needed to show that the policy will benefit the encyclopedia and the readers. The fake examples you cite would anyway fail the WP:NOT trivial cross-categorization issue, because they both would rely on a single arbitrary source. But a List of restaurants considered the worst could be a perfectly good idea (indeed, I'm almost tempted to create it). --cyclopiaspeak! 18:06, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
Yup, I agree completely here . We can use sourcing to discriminate when a list is far too narrow on one or two opinions such as your examples. On the other hand , if multiple sources identify a qualitative measure (even if each describing a different elements) then that's a good way to build it up - in fact, that's how we've built up List of commercial failures in video gaming - there's no single source to ID every one listed, but when a game or hardware unit is a commercial failure (which is not always a quantitative measure), the press notes this. --MASEM (t) 18:11, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
I do not find the arguments and concerns of Purplebackpack89 persuasive. Infividual list can still be subject to a notability filter -- if a reliable source has not written on the subject of the list, that can be a policy-based reason to delete it. Or if others feel overwhelmed, this consensus can always change later. DES (talk) 18:17, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
The AfD'ed articles you cite have extensive histories of AfDs, all demonstrating that there is no consensus to delete them even individually on their own merits, let alone rule out all such things as a class by policy. DMacks (talk) 19:26, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Postdlf, DMacks, Masem, Bd2412. Also, this would set a poor precedent for the encyclopedia that would unnecessarily restrict content that passes WP:V. Inclusion criteria in list articles can be determined within each respective article, as they greatly vary in content and premise. Northamerica1000(talk) 19:44, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per others above. List of films considered the best has been WP:SNOW kept 4 times, and would fall under this criteria, and saying we will allow best but not worst or other subjective criteria is unencyclopaedic and smells of WP:IDONTLIKEIT. What is the difference between say between List of films considered the best than say List of films the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences considered the best, well the first lists those from a wide range of critics and publications, whereas the second is a list of films by a small group of people, bit like the one restaurant columnist. Attempts to change policy to affect ongoing AfD's is wiki-lawyering at its worst.Martin451 23:22, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Everything is subjective. Political office? Consider such positions as community leader or chief. Awards? Consider WP:AWARDS such as "Most Pluperfect Labutnum". Places that have received a designation? What, like best kept village or 1,000 Places to See Before You Die? You can hardly get more subjective than this. Warden (talk) 08:17, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
  • oppose this particular wording, but something does need to be done. As it stands now, nothing prevents us from creating Lists of deaths considered tragic - and all that would be required to generate such a list is some news article somewhere calling some death of person X "tragic" (given we already have books that list collections of tragic deaths of sports heros or musicians. I think this would be a fundamentally bad thing for the wiki to have (in the same way I think List of unusual deaths should go). But there are other, worse lists - like "List of arrogant celebrities" or "List of disgusting foods" - all of these can be easily sourced, but they don't belong here, so how do we fix policy to exclude such things?--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 16:19, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Of course you are to some extent arguing your conclusion: "...they don't belong here..." so the policy must be changed to exclude them. Why don't they belong? DES (talk) 16:27, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Just for the record, the topic of "disgusting foods" is the topic of several publications (even if for sure not Cambridge University Press academic stuff) [9], [10], [11], [12] etc. so it sounds to me another nice list article to have (only problem, it would be probably very biased towards Western tastes). --cyclopiaspeak! 16:34, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Because they violate WP:IINFO, but as currently written it's not strong enough to exclude them, at least not categorically.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 16:35, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
FWIW, you have to be very careful, because if you suggest that <adjective> + <noun> is not encyclopedic, Cyclopia will find a source and start a list on same.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 16:35, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
So... it violates WP:IINFO, but not the current IINFO, it only violates the version you (and Pbp) have in your head. Rrrrright, that's an excellent argument to change our policy: "Make it what we have in our heads." "Why?" "Because it violates the policy that I have in my head."--cyclopiaspeak! 16:48, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

The key to this is understanding WP:No original research and WP:Verifiability. If a list is based on the subjectivity of Wikipeida's editors (what our editors consider the "best" or "worst"), then it does not belong. If, on the other hand, it merely reports on the subjectivity of others (ie what reliable sources considers the "best" or "worst") then it is fine. WE must remain neutral. Our sources, however, are allowed to be subjective and biased. OUR job is to neutrally report on what those sources say. Blueboar (talk) 16:43, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

True; but we also have a whole policy on WP:NOT; WP:IINFO clearly states that "merely being true, or even verifiable, does not automatically make something suitable for inclusion in the encyclopedia." - if we just start making lists because some RS made the same list, the wiki would soon be full of lots of useless and POV crap, like List of beautiful actresses or List of women with large breasts. There is a line for inclusion in the wiki, that is not simply based on whether something can be sourced. As written now, the policies seem to permit lists that in my mind are on the other side of that line. Cyclopia seems to misunderstand that we are having a discussion about changing policy, and as such, changes in policy from what is currently written to what we think should be written is perfectly normal here.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 17:08, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
@Obiwankenobi:, I understand perfectly well that it makes perfect sense to change policy according to what you think would be the right one. Problem is that you need to give a reason why your change would be beneficial. So far the only arguments you and Purplebackpack89 managed to pull out are of the type "the wiki would soon be full of lots of useless and POV crap". That is not an argument. That is just a WP:IDONTLIKEIT assertion: "I don't like these articles, so we have to change the policy to avoid having articles I don't like". That's not how it works. You have to show that we live better without these articles you don't like, you have to show that such articles you don't like are a net negative to the project and/or the readers, etc.etc. In short, you have to give a sensible reason for the change. Merely stating "We risk having articles that I personally dislike" is not such a reason. About WP:IINFO, please read WP:DISCRIMINATE, which is linked in WP:IINFO and meant to explain it. It is the most sadly misunderstood of all our policies. Just a hint: It is not a jolly to make WP:IDONTLIKEIT policy. --cyclopiaspeak! 20:32, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Such lists, like of unusual deaths, are detrimental to the encyclopedic nature of the project as they imply a false air of authority in cataloging deaths from "unusual" causes, and suggest that such deaths are indeed unusual, whereas we don't have any evidence whatsoever that they truly are (nor do we have a consensus definition of what "unusual" really means) - the current contents are completely anecdotal in nature, and without any rigor applied whatsoever. It cheapens the encyclopedia, and puts us in line with buzzfeed and ripley's believe it or not and the Fortean Times; it's demeaning to the victims; and it is fundamentally based on a poor premise, that we should without editorial thought take <adjective> + <noun> + <cheapo book of lists> and decide that it was worthy of the wiki to compile such a list and maintain it here. There are thousands of other <adjective> + <noun> lists with robust sourcing that would never be permitted, but for some reason this one, and a few others, have survived till now. I actually think the article is interesting, I don't NOT like it, and I would be happy for it to live in wikispace like Wikipedia:Unusual_articles; I just think it's debasing the project to have it continue to live in article space and it is fundamentally contrary to our pillars of NPOV to uncritically accept random assessments of unusualness as a criteria for building a list. An alternate list, like "unique causes of death (e.g. only recorded once)" would be interesting, harder to source, but definitely more encyclopedic, but when you have people falling off horses or being killed by battle elephants or dying of carbon monoxide poisoning the whole thing just becomes ridiculous.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 20:55, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
This is a reasonable argument. However it seems mostly a reason to rename such articles to List of X ''considered'' Y, to make it clear that we're not making an absolute assessment, but we're reporting which X sources consider to be Y. I strongly disagree that it cheapens the encyclopedia: I think that the possibility of this class of articles, that would perhaps not enter classical, old-school academic encyclopedias, is one of the big strengths and added values of Wikipedia (and honestly also a reason of WP popularity, for what it's worth). I also disagree with the NPOV violation -it is not POV to say that a source considers X to be Y. But thanks for offering an actual reasoning. --cyclopiaspeak! 21:02, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Then do you think we should create List of women considered beautiful? I'm pretty sure it wouldn't last a day, but what would be your arguments to keep such a list? Or if not, why should we not have such a list? It would be very easy to source.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 21:06, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
We do what we do at other articles where there may be many sources but full inclusion would lead to IINFO - we put a requirement on the quality of the sources. For example, at List of Internet phenomena (aka a list of memes), there are potentially 1000s of sources that could make for a massive list. However, we specifically do not allow less-reliable sources (that otherwise would be used in articles) to keep the inclusion requirement high. On this list, a meme recognized by the NYTimes or the BBC would be included, but one recognized by, say, Gawker or other more blog-like sources, would not be included. Similarly, this could be applied here; a list of women considered beautiful should probably exclude any celebrity magazine or the like, in favor of sources like NYTimes or other major newspapers. --MASEM (t) 21:19, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Basing articles on non-neutral sources is a bad idea. Articles should be based on neutral sources whenever possible. It's not possible in "best", "worst", "unusual", etc. pbp 16:58, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Claims of subjectivity can be made from neutral sources. For example, I would reasonably expect that a reference on "Disgusting foods" would be based on surveys done with a sample audience; the individual replies are subjects, the results are objective and neurtal. There are a number of ways to rank "worst films" - not limited to aggregrate ratings or financial performance, that are neutral. --MASEM (t) 17:05, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
Not true - disgusting foods are mostly based on foods the author of the book thinks are disgusting, from their POV. For example, eating insects is disgusting for many people in the US and western europe, but for people from Thailand, it's quite normal. These sort of POV lists should not be permitted here, as they violate NPOV and also are a form of systemic bias.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 17:31, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Masem, the thing is, if you have a neutral way to it, the form of that neutral way would suggest a title that doesn't include "best", "worst" or "unusual". For example, on your movie example, one would be List of box office failures pbp 17:43, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
That would be considered financial failures, but I can tell you that term is technically loaded too - a film that may make double its production costs back can still be called a failure if the production house though it was going to pull 3 times the cost. At the same time, an art house film make fail to make back its cost, but it becomes a critical darling/Oscar-winning, and would not be considered a failure either. Hence it is subjective as well - but as long as we let reliable sources make the call of where a failure may be to construct the list, then we're in the clear. In other words, a list with a subjective qualifying term can still be written about objectively, as long as we the editors set the expectations for inclusion on the list (like, requiring certain reliable sources). --MASEM (t) 17:50, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
If the list was based on the opinion of a single author, even a noted and exotic food critic like Anthony Bourdain, that might be something about POV. But I would expect any such list to be based on multitude of sources, which may include many notable critics and studies akin to the one I mentioned; likely the list here would explain what the source was so that it does not appear as original research. Yes, what the sourcing is will be important, and that doesn't necessary make a subjective list appropriate, but I counter the claim that it is impossible to make one that isn't objective at the end of the day. --MASEM (t) 17:40, 31 October 2013 (UTC)

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

Track and grade vandal reports

Proposal to track and include statistics for vandal reporting activity, on WP:AIV for the person reporting the vandalism.

  1. Number of Reports to WP:AIV
  2. Helpful vs Unhelpful reports (Admin (or bot) defines if the report resulted in the a block or not).
    1. Helpful/block placed
    2. Unhelpful/block declined (insufficient warning, etc)
  3. Reports to other user conduct noticeboards

The edit history of the reported vandal is an important element for the reviewing admin, and is easily available via {{IPvandal}} and {{Vandal}}. Details about reporting history of the reporter can also be an important tool and are more difficult to easily review.

There is nothing in this proposed policy proposal that is not already available, to any person who wants to look for it. This is about proving public information in an easy access format.

Why? - Editors who monitor for and report Vandalism have differing amounts of experience and skills with the process. Providing this information easily increases the probability that both the reported and reporting get due consideration and assistance in meeting the exceptions of Wikipedia:Vandalism.

This is a policy proposal not a technical discussion. Similar polices are in place on other sites (i.e. Stack Exchange Network), it can be done. There is no point in discussions on how until/if the policy is adopted. Jeepday (talk) 11:01, 2 November 2013 (UTC)

i am not sure I see any potential benefit. would you give out badges of "I have a perfect AIV reporting record!" (or the perverse "How close to zero can I get?" for trolls) ? would seem to create an atmosphere where artificial halo or horns effect would be a primary impact on future results rather than actual evidence of the situation. And you cannot just ignore the technical side, there is absolutely no net benefit if the addition is not technically automated so that it would not cause any extra work for the admins working the ANI board. The "other places are using it" would need to show that it has in fact improved the response quality and such changes could be expected in an entirely different culture that is Wikipedia. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 13:24, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
Apparently neither does anyone else, given the volume of responses. I was not thinking about badges, more about admin tools to address vandal reporting behavior that is not in keeping with expectations. In the current system there is not really a systematic way of addressing the reporter, only the reported. All to often the issue is not with the reported editor. JeepdaySock (AKA, Jeepday) 11:53, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
I see value in the idea. There are editors who continually report cases to AIV that are not vandalism (I can think of at least one by name at the moment), and it would be nice to have some way of telling patrolling admins "you should pay special attention to the details of this case, the reporter has a history of bad reports". However, I have similar concerns as to whether patrolling admins would start to depend more on the reporter's "reputation" than on the actual behavior being reported when making a decision. As for automation, this type of data should be something a bot or some other type of automated tool could gather and process, as long as the patrolling admins use {{AIV}} consistently. —Darkwind (talk) 01:34, 7 November 2013 (UTC)

WP:SUBTITLES

Everyone keeps citing this guideline, but this is part of WP:NCBOOKS. Perhaps shall we create similar guideline for WP:NCM, or split up that guideline to make it a stand-alone guideline? It may look like a proposal, but this is also about the guideline itself. --George Ho (talk) 21:44, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

Restrict Article Creation to Autoconfirmed Users

While patrolling New Pages, I often find users who's first edit is to create a new article and often these fall into one of two categories.

  1. Poorly formatted articles which are a complete mess.
  2. Promotional accounts which are created by promotion only accounts or vandalism.

Now the first one isn't usually too bad as it can be fixed by a more experienced editor. However, the second group are more of an issue. I feel this could be combated by restricting article creation to those who are autoconfirmed. For users who want to contribute constructively, 4 days and 10 edits shouldn't be a problem and it will give them time to 'learn the ropes' to prevent pages such as those in category 1 happening as often. However, it should be enough to deter most vandals and promotion only accounts. If a user has a desperate need to create an article before this, they can still post it as Wikipedia:Articles for creation or request to be manually confirmed. Oddbodz (talk) 18:42, 27 October 2013 (UTC)

This would indeed be a good idea. A controlled trial of it was proposed in 2011 under the name of ACTRIAL and received fairly general support, but was vetoed by the WMF. Further discussion in 2012 concluded that proposing it again would be a waste of breath. See:
JohnCD (talk) 20:44, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
The WMF has much to answer for. Eric Corbett 21:04, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
So much for Wikipedia:Consensus then! Still, if we can reach consensus again, perhaps it may be enough to persuade them to change their minds! Oddbodz (talk) 21:14, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
Similar to how the Visual Editor was dealt with, perhaps the WMF's veto can be bypassed. What the WMF vetoed 2 years ago was the request by the community to impose a technical restriction on article creation by non-confirmed accounts, so what we'd need to do is add a speedy deletion criteria perhaps, so that such article creations can be zapped on sight. Tarc (talk) 21:29, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
sooo, what happened with Wikipedia:Page Curation which was supposed to address the flow a new bad articles? has that had any impact? Has the percentage of bad articles created by new users changed? Is there any data about how the deletion of poorly created bad articles by new accounts affects the retention of good editors? (I personally don't give two hoots about the retention of bad editors who only want to get their special product/project/fangroup listed in Wikipedia)-- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 21:47, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
While Page Curation has made it easier to remove bad articles, it does nothing to address the fact that they're being created in the first place! I agree - is somebody has come to Wikipedia with the sole intention of promoting their product, the odds of them deciding to stop this and use their account in a constructive manner is 0 to none! For the few that are doing it in good faith, waiting to become autoconfirmed should be enough for them to learn the policies and realise its not something they can do on Wikipedia. Oddbodz (talk) 22:08, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. The likelihood of a newcomer arriving with a new notable topic, for which there is no related content in any existing article worth them editing, is very small. Four days and ten edits is very little to ask. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 21:24, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose unconfirmed users' new article attempts being shunted to AfC. AfC should be but one option. Options advised should be: (1) Do some editing relating to your interest. If you have a new topic, expand existing coverage in existing articles first. After ten edits and four days, you will automatically acquire the ability to start a new article.; or (2) Submit an entry at WP:AfC; or (3) If you really want to start a page, now, ask for an established Wikipedian user to create the page for you, by asking on your own talk page, and including the {{Help me}} template to attract attention.

    We should not advise new editors that they can do ten worthless edits on thier own talk page, etc.

    Option (3), advising new editors to ask a question may lead to a human interaction that is far better that navigating AfC, and is probably a good way to select people visiting in good faith.

    I also support auto-welcoming accounts on registration. (when and where was that decided to be a bad idea?). --SmokeyJoe (talk) 00:34, 28 October 2013 (UTC)

Comment I'm confused. There's 2 levels of checks that we on non-autoconfirmed users. Using the AFC process and the NPP patrol. These are the first two gateways that are passed when an experienced editor starts pushing for their article to be "published". Could AFC work harder to filter/polish articles prior to when they go out to mainspace? Sure. Could NPP exercise more activity when objecting to articles? Sure. Personally I know, as a AFC volunteer, that there will always be bad pages in articlespace that don't even meet the barest of minimums in what makes a good article. I see this VPP thread as a "We want ACTRIAL" complaint with no realy new solutions provided to the previous WMF veto. Hasteur (talk) 21:35, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support as a great idea!, We don't want to off-put yet the amount of promo/unencyclopedic content is an issue & needs addressing/stopping, 4 days and 10 edits is perfect. -→Davey2010→→Talk to me!→ 21:37, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • I would support as a technical limit on new accounts, which the WMF seems to have a stick up their butt about, but vehemently oppose it as a CSD criterion. If you are going to go through the bother of CSDing the damn thing, you might as well either 1) just fix the formatting, or 2) delete it as promotional spam. The only way this will work with any sense is if new editors get automatically shunted off to AfC and can't technically create the new article. VanIsaacWS Vexcontribs 22:53, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree that this will only work as a technical limit. Hopefully, if enough support is gained, WMF might reconsider or at least explain why they go in the face of consensus and refuse to make the change. Oddbodz (talk) 23:08, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • pending any surprising answers to my questions support a technical limit - It is a far better retention strategy to "force" people to ease into the Wikipedia world than to allow them to come in willy nilly, create a completely unacceptable page, and get slapped in the face because URDOINITWRONG and we did not provide the appropriate guidance to have them DO IT RIGHT. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 23:14, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support i do believe this is necessary.Lucia Black (talk) 23:50, 27 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Quite many new users start their wikiediting by discovering that a notable topic is not supported and writing a new article. If we do not allow them to edit we would lose a great number of good new editors Alex Bakharev (talk) 00:44, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
    Any evidence for that? Eric Corbett 00:53, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
    Well, for the start I have started my wikiediting by creating Theophanes the Greek (as an IP) and Pavel Filonov. I think the articles were reasonably good for a newcomer. I do not think I would have stayed on Wiki if I hadnot the ability to create new articles from the start. I used to do new article patrolling a lot and many editors who started as article creators ended up as good contributors. Alex Bakharev (talk) 01:13, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
    But it is significant that you did that in 2005, when Wikipedia is much smaller than it is now. It would be more convincing if you could present examples of new editors now creating valid pages within their first ten edits. Nikkimaria (talk) 18:32, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment I'd oppose if the method for enforcing this is a new speedy deletion category. There could be no more serious method of biting a newcomer than speedily deleting a notable article they created because they are new. I suppose the category could be something along the lines of "Article created by an editor who is no autoconfirmed that a reasonable editor would not keep at AfD". Ryan Vesey 01:01, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
I agree - however, as mentioned above, I believe the method for enforcing this should be a technical limit, similar to the one in place that prevents anonymous editors from creating articles. Oddbodz (talk) 01:16, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. This is a step in the right direction. Wikipedia is now mature enough that IPs and newly registered editors are not required for the brute strength goal of massive encyclopedia expansion. The time for more finesse has come. Binksternet (talk) 01:18, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. A major carrot for creating an account is the immediate ability to start creating articles, and I am very loathe to take away that incentive. Regarding the problems with newbie articles in the proposal, we already have WP:CSD#G11 to deal with promotional articles and CSD A1/A3/G1/G2 to deal with articles that are an utter mess or essentially empty. If the problem is merely presentation, fixing up formatting errors is relatively easy and the editing policy is clear that we do not expect anything nearing perfection. The proposal is motivated by a good faith concern, but adding layers upon layers of restrictions on newcomers comes across as BITEey. It is a sharp learning curve to pick up on wiki-markup and content policies, and we need to be somewhat tolerant of there being some trial and error in the beginning. Sjakkalle (Check!) 07:58, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose This would disrupt editathon activity in which new editors are specifically encouraged to create new articles. A new article is a better task for a newcomer than editing an existing article because there's less worry about breaking someone else's work and the structure of a new article is simpler. Examples of recent articles which would have been prevented by this proposal include: Eleanora Knopf, Elizabeth Laird, Gladys Anderson Emerson, Grace Bates and Julia Gulliver. Note that these articles were created by new female editors and are about women. There are many more articles like this still to be done due to the systemic bias against women on Wikipedia. Raising barriers to entry would be contrary to such outreach. Andrew Davidson (talk) 13:11, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • For organized events we could give participating users the Confirmed right. I actually did some quantitative research on this for the 2011 proposal. Not only do more people start by editing an existing page, but new users have around a 70% chance of having an article they create deleted, compared to only 30% being reverted on an existing page. Mr.Z-man 13:52, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose This is why we have AfC as a gateway. The negative effects on activities like editathons outweigh any slight advantage. If AfC isn't working right, then we should focus on improving AfC. Andy Dingley (talk) 13:19, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
    • The nproblem here is with people who choose not to use AfC, which is entirely voluntary. People can create pages in mainspace, "articles" by defination even if they don't meeet basic standards for articles, without ever going through AfC. As I understand it, he intent of thsi proposal would be to induce more such people to use AfC. DES (talk) 13:46, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose - This goes against the very fabric of the project ie.."anyone can edit". As Sjakkalle states, we have many ways to handle these issues already in place. Mlpearc (powwow) 13:34, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
    • it does not prevent "anyone from editing", it merely prevents them from creating a new article page until they have at least a minimal chance of becoming familiar with a few of Wikipedia's requirements. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 20:39, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Only after we improve AfC review At present I think it an extremely bad idea to direct any but the most obvious COI editors to AfC , because of the likelihood that they will not get helpful advice there--the results sometimes seem almost random. Once we have established better reviewing by qualified editors -- say in 6 months or os, then it will be another matter entirely, Contrary to some previous opinions here, I think it quite likely people will come here with a genuine good faith valid new article about something notable that interests them: a new book or film or recording, a newly elected politician, an historical person who does not have an article, one of the hundreds of thousands of towns and villages we still have not covered, or the tens of thousands of biological species. It's an excellent motive for coming to WP to write a new article. Some people will study WP a little first and learn how to do it; some will gain experience by editing existing articles, some will need assistance. We should provide for all of them. As for the WMF I think the WMF is now properly concerned enough about promotional editing that attitudes there may be somewhat different than in the past. DGG ( talk ) 15:38, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose this on many levels; however, due to my personal real life issues I don't have time to go into great detail at this time. I'll try to get back around and add all of my thoughts and reasons here or in a discussion section if one has spawned by then. Technical 13 (talk) 16:57, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. As Binksternet says, a small step in the right direction. Eric Corbett 17:05, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support "Anyone can edit" does not imply "anyone can create new articles without any training or experience". This proposal or something like it has come up several times since I have been editing (I argued in favor back in 2001 and left for a while because consensus was over-ruled by WMF). It makes total sense to me, since I spend 90% of my time in deletion debates on such first-time articles, or fixing the few that are worth saving since they are so badly done. This proposal has been rejected every time one way or another, but eventually something like this must be done, or else at least the English Wikipedia will die of dead weight, when the experienced editors get tired and quit. Then all that would be left are the bad article creators. Certainly a better AfC process would be best, so people would have incentive to use it instead of going around it as the do now. And perhaps editors like me might have more time to help on AfC if we did not have so may new articles to delete and clean up. Has someone thought of the obvious: with all this attention to massive online classes, why not develop an online class on Wikipedia editing? If someone gets through the class we could give them a fast-track to creating a new article, and there might be fewer frustrated new editors as well as frustrated experienced editors. In this day it seems we end up explaining the same issues (neutral tone, citation format, external link policy, and notability). W Nowicki (talk) 17:16, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support While it is "a small step in the right direction", it is a very small step in the right direction and I'd be in favor of Nowicki's suggestion. Gandydancer (talk) 17:23, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. W Nowicki and Binksternet have said it all, I couldn't agree more. Yintan  20:51, 28 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose simply on principle. As a long time editor who knows Wikipedia policies quite well, participates in discussions here on the policy page and generally engages with other editors on a regular basis, I have a very difficult time trying to get new articles created if only because every time I start an article it gets slapped with a PROD then inevitably an AfD that I must always fight (and my track record has been 100% keep with AfD). There are some serious problems with the article creation process where trying to slap down new users is not likely to help and fails to actually fix the problems with false positives on PRODs and new article deletions. We have some significant editor retention issues, and this particular proposal only seems to encourage the elitism... or at least the uber elite only need apply perception that many outside of core Wikipedia editors really have. If you really want to see what technically minded people (aka they can handle the Wikimarkup text or even raw HTML) think of their editing experience, please read this Slashdot thread and note that these experiences are typical. There are some real problems, but this proposal is at best a band-aid to a much larger systemic problem on Wikipedia that has no real easy answers. --Robert Horning (talk) 07:24, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
    • I do not see how guiding people into creating appropriate articles where they will be significantly less likely to be immediately slapped because of egregious failings in their article would do anything OTHER than increase the positive initial experiences and HELP with retention. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 18:39, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
      • This proposal really won't stop the flood of new articles, even if implemented. It isn't guiding people into creating appropriate articles, it is simply throwing up additional barriers to participation. Trolls will continue to make pages in spite of being autoconfirmed, and it encourages nonsense edits simply to get to magic thresholds. I am also worried about a slippery slope of even further restrictions later on where editors will need to request "article creation" privileges (technically already possible with MediaWiki software). --Robert Horning (talk) 01:08, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. In a couple of recent RfAs, the candidates have expressed an interest in tackling speedy deletion, partly because they've noticed a backlog. As an admin who patrols CSD, I, too, have noticed the backlog and wonder what the cause is. It seems to me there's more trash than usual (mostly A7s), but I have no idea why. It is quicker to delete obvious candidates, but it's nonetheless a pain in the ass (many are often recreated). I would have supported this idea even before the increase in candidates. It's a relatively small barrier to article creation, and I see little difference between a no-experience-IP creating an article and a no-experience-newly-registered account creating an article.--Bbb23 (talk) 18:58, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. A relatively minor restriction for anyone intending to contribute usefully, and a useful filter against crap. I'm unconvinced by the 'oppose' arguments above. AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:12, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment: This current proposal won't fly and the Foundation will clip its wings before it even grows feathers. As one of the main ringleaders of the reasons for and the development of WP:ACTRIAL - which BTW was a very heavily subscribed discussion with a very clear consensus - I would support this because it would solve most of the problems of AfC and NPP in one fell swoop. One the other hand, although they were far from polite about it, the Foundation did finally explain that it would clash with the very mantra that the Wikipedia is the encyclopedia anyone can edit and that within that founding policy/philosophy it means that any registered user can create an article in mainspace. The backup argument being that imposing a 4 days and 10 edits hoop would put off too many people from wanting to create an article. I understand that too, but where a huge number of new creations are genuine junk just fit to be jettisoned on sight, we still need to be looking at some serious solutions.
What we need to do is take a stiff, hard look at the way we are reviewing submissions at AfC and patrolling new pages at NPP. Both systems are suffering from the same ailments: too few operators, too low quality, and too long backlogs. The new New Page Curation system did not address any of those issues; although it is a brilliant piece of software, it's only any good in the hands of those who know what they are doing. Current proposals to introduce minimum qualifications for AfC rewiewing are meeting resistance from those who fear the introduction of too much bureaucracy or are paranoid about 'teenage admins with an axe to grind', while those who want some controls can only suggest burdening the already overloaded system by double checking the reviews.
On another point, I do a lot of physical deletions, and often work through the CSD cat (that's where I also catch the wrongly tagged articles), but I've never come across any serious backlogs there - in fact if there is one, I can usually clear it myself in less than an hour, but if we can address the issues surrounding AfC and NPP once and for all, it will also reduce the number of AfDs and its monumental backlog. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 19:54, 29 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose - I do NPP filtered to new users, and I don't have the perception that most of what they create is useless or inappropriate. To be sure, most of the inappropriate crud does come from them, but shifting this to AFC will do no good, unless the AFC folks suddenly decide to start assisting more in creating the content rather than just reviewing it. Someone who is going to create a viable page will do so in article space or AFC, and someone who is going to write useless crud will do so in both places. NPP+CSD now take care of the worst offenders. And Morning277 and friends know full well how to get around the autoconfirmed restrictions anyway, so that's not going to stop them. Quite frankly, at the cost of some more real time cleanup (which we're already doing), I'd rather we don't add another restriction to article creation. The ideal situation in my mind would be for a technical solution where non-patrolled pages are visible but not indexed by Google until they are reviewed by a trusted editor. Because outside of petty vandalism, ultimately that's largely why people create crud - to have it show up in Google. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 01:31, 30 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose - please tell me why a user who has been here for 5 days and has made ten edits is that different to one who has been here for a day and made ten edits? By this proposal, the latter user couldn't write an article, and yet the former could. That, and the WMF wouldn't ever stand for it. This will make precisely no difference whatsoever; autoconfirmed is such a low bar that it essentially means nothing, and any higher restrictions would be unhelpful as well. Comments about backlogs aren't relevant either, because this will be a small drop in the ocean compared to what sits around in NPP for months. A quick look at NPP shows that the five oldest articles (all from 17 May 2013) were by users with 360 edits, 29 edits, 7927 edits, 19 edits and 195 edits. Pages from inexperienced users are generally reviewed first anyway, so all it does is shift the bar very slightly. Lukeno94 (tell Luke off here) 14:13, 31 October 2013 (UTC)
  • Support—I really didn't know which way to go with this, until I read User:DGG's comment above. He opposed, and part of his rationale is that "Some people will study WP a little first and learn how to do it; some will gain experience by editing existing articles, some will need assistance. We should provide for all of them." I agree with this statement, but I think that supporting this proposal is the best way to provide for all of them. Let's focus on the legitimate new editor who is not a vandal, someone who has a good faith intention to start a new article on something. They muck it up because they don't understand Wikipedia policies, Wiki markup, etc. Maybe their subject actually isn't notable. Their article gets CSD'ed, they get an automated message on their talk page (if they can figure out how to see it), and 5 to 60 minutes later their article is deleted. This doesn't sound to me like we are providing for the user. On the other hand, if they were restricted from starting new articles, and the error message directed them to the Tea House, AfC, or one of the other new user outreach programs we have going, their article might take a few extra days to get posted, but they'll have a much better overall introductory experience. LivitEh?/What? 13:30, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
  • Support although I don't think this proposal actually goes far enough. Barney the barney barney (talk) 14:25, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose, essentially per Mlpearc. Ironholds (talk) 21:42, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
  • Moot - There's no point. The last time the community supported something along these lines, the foundation told us to fuck off. You're wasting your breath, unfortunately. Resolute 21:51, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
the "fuck off" was before their recommended fix for the issue was launched. There is now a bunch of data to show whether or not their proposed fix for the issues has worked which may lead some to change their minds to make them more willing to listen to ours. They may indeed say "fuck off" again, but they may not. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 21:58, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
I think we both know what the odds are. Resolute 23:42, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Encouraging new editors is a high priority and I'd like to be assured this won't hinder that effort. Jason from nyc (talk) 16:33, 7 November 2013 (UTC)

Pronouncers should use English symbols and characters

I read the site in English and often something I've looked up has a pronouncer that includes non-English characters and symbols. For instance, the city of Shreveport shows it is pronounced as "/ˈʃriːvpɔrt/". I think the English version of Wikipedia should use only standard English dictionary characters and symbols in its pronouncers. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 98.84.117.162 (talk) 10:43, 1 November 2013 (UTC)

"standard English dictionary characters" - there is no such thing. Learn to read IPA; it's been around for 125 years, is used by linguists and lexicographers in nearly every country of the world, and is even used in ... wait for it ... many dictionaries! VanIsaacWS Vexcontribs 11:20, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
I don't see a problem with adding traditional English phonic symbols, such as \ˈshrēv-ˌpȯrt\ for the example noted. The pronunciation shown is used by Merriam-Webster, American Heritage, Random House, Oxford Dictionary Online (US English), etc. GregJackP Boomer! 12:01, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
It's useless for the masses, but the IPA crowd likes it, so it's not likely to go away soon. Just ignore it like most everyone else does. --Onorem (talk) 12:10, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
Until I started editing WP I never even knew IPA existed. It isn't used in any of the dictionaries I've ever seen, it isn't generally taught in South African high schools, colleges or universities (except perhaps specifically in linguistics courses?). I have picked up a rudimentary understanding of it only by looking at the IPA for words I that I know. IPA is simply not accessible to the ordinary WP reader. I have yet to see it actually used anywhere outside of WP in general reference works (specialist linguistics books and journals excepted). "Descriptions" such as "open flat forward labiovelar lateral voiced gobbledygook" which are common in the language articles here, might as well be written in Klingon. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 12:37, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia is for things we know about and things we do not and never want to know. It is also an international encyclopaedia. IPA is an international standard, and if one wants to indicate the pronunciation of a word - like Sjambok since you mention South Africa - that is one way to do it, a sound file another. Alternative methods often run into the difficulty that they depend on a familiarity with the local pronunciation of other words or can be very long winded. --AJHingston (talk) 13:18, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
Ouch! Did you really have to pick "sjambok" as an example of SAE? Something like "springbok" would have made your point just as well without the gratuitous negativity. (Apartheid has been over for about twenty years - by 1965 Germans were no longer constanly having Hitler rammed down their throats.) Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 14:37, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
Nothing sinister intended - I was looking for an article title the pronunciation of which would not be obvious to non-native users and this came up by chance. The sensitivity of the choice should have occurred to me. As it happens, Germans frequently complain about Brits trampling in sensitive areas even today. --AJHingston (talk) 14:54, 1 November 2013 (UTC)
Don't mention the war. postdlf (talk) 15:52, 1 November 2013 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I agree with GregJackP and Dodger67 above. IPA is not useful for the vast majority of our readers, any more than say the official long structural names of chemical compounds are, indeed if anything less so, since it uses symbols not part of the roman alphabet. I have never seen IPA used by any standard dictionary, and I have used many. Nor have I seen IPA used by any non-specialist publication. I suggest that the appropriate MOS page be changed to permit and strongly encourage if not mandate the use of such traditional English phonic symbols in addition to IPA symbols (I would oppose sound files unless they come from a WP:RS, which seems unlikely.)DES (talk) 16:26, 1 November 2013 (UTC)

I went ahead and added the {{USDict}} to the article, so that both pronunciation guides would be used. Since a majority of U.S. readers have no clue what IPA is, and probably even less interest in learning it, it just makes sense to add a pronunciation guide that they understand. GregJackP Boomer! 17:14, 1 November 2013 (UTC)

I don't think IPA is here because "the IPA crowd likes it"; it is here because it is an uncontroversial, rigid standard, applicable globally. But I also agree that many readers will not be familiar with it. What would be nice if there was a way to maintain pronunciation in IPA and then render it according to a preference; perhaps this could be centralized in the relevant template. BTW, the very first dictionary I pulled off of my shelf (Collins Gem French-English Dictionary, 6th edition, 2001) does use IPA. Regards, Orange Suede Sofa (talk) 17:49, 1 November 2013 (UTC)

  • We need both' We need IPA because it is the international standard, and the only accepted exact method of showing pronunciation in written characters. But we need a respelling in English characters, however approximate it will inevitably be, because very few people understand IPA. I certainly don't, tho I have tried--such transcriptions are useless to me. Perhaps I have unusually deficient skills, but I suspect that at least most American users are equally weak at this. DGG ( talk ) 00:53, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
    I agree, but the second one should indeed be respelling, not US-dictionary. The problem with US-dictionary is that there is no standard; different dictionaries have different tables of sounds-v-symbols. Respelling doesn't have a fixed standard either, but since we're making it up ourselves, we can point the reader to a link. I don't see any point in including US-dictionary pronunciations. --Trovatore (talk) 03:09, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
    Agree too. Privileging American dictionaries over all others isn't justified. Roger (Dodger67) (talk) 06:40, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
    If there were a US standard I think it might be reasonable to include it — the US has more than 60% of the worlds's native English speakers. But there isn't one, and I don't see any point in WP inventing its own US standard. Might as well just invent a good respelling standard. --Trovatore (talk) 18:44, 2 November 2013 (UTC)
    We could choose one of them (preferably the "most comprehensive" and "best") for our standard, or even say 'article writer: choose among these two or three'. Alanscottwalker (talk) 13:38, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
I saw two comments above that they haven't seen any dictionary use IPA. I would encourage them to look in the Oxford English Dictionary, which isn't a terrible dictionary.--Atethnekos (DiscussionContributions) 02:34, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
  • Wikipedia exists primarily for our readers. IPA is Greek to most people and it's unreasonable to expect them to "learn", as Vanisaac suggests. Joefromrandb (talk) 12:32, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
  • I agree. I have an excellent education, one I have mostly squandered, but this "how to pronounce the hard word" stuff might as well be Chinese for all I can understand it. Greek I can read! I don't mind having it there, but I feel we could do with a readily easily understood=d alternative alongside it. I feel disenfranchised by seeing just the weirdly gobbledegook. Fiddle Faddle 12:50, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
It is also an international encyclopaedia, and not just for those whose first language is English. IPA exists because alternatives are problematic. Something designed for US users may be misleading to an English speaker in India. I am sorry that the use of audio files has been deprecated on the grounds of lack of RS, because they are the friendliest to users and in the case of things like place names where they are most likely to be used and useful, it is very easy for others to check the veracity. --AJHingston (talk) 13:05, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
Agree but, if say there was a note added to the IPA paren to an American English dictionary and other variety English Dictionary pronunciation guide that would be helpful to non-linguists. Alanscottwalker (talk) 13:32, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
Wait, audio is deprecated? That's... baffling. When on earth did that happen? Andrew Gray (talk) 14:30, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, I should have made clear that was in this discussion, in a remark by DES above, but nobody else has spoken in favour of them. --AJHingston (talk) 14:57, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
When I first came across IPA it annoyed me. Now I have got a bit used to it I think it is really clever. As well as being a standard it also provides a specification, using one string of weird characters, how someone with your accent would be likely to pronounce any particular word. And if you and I come from different parts of the world or have different regional accents, the suggested pronunciations may be different for the two of us. That doesn't always work, but usually does. It's really clever. For many words, respelling with some ad hoc method simply does not achieve that. So, it's OK by me to keep respelling methods (sometimes they are a lot easier), but please don't get rid of IPA. The {{IPAc-en}} template is brilliant because if you hover over each symbol it shows you how it is pronounced in your own accent. An example is at Actinopterygii.Thincat (talk) 15:30, 3 November 2013 (UTC)
There's nothing wrong with including IPA. There is something wrong with expecting the average reader to learn an alphabet "used by linguists and lexicographers". (This is akin to our mathematics articles, 95% of which are of no use to anyone who isn't already familiar with the subject.) Joefromrandb (talk) 00:42, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
The solution would appear to be to add a respelling template as well. I agree that the ability to have the pronunciation explained by hovering over the IPA symbol is very useful. You don't have to understand IPA to start with, and linking to the IPA article provides an explanation of the differences between different sounds (in terms of tongue position etc.) --Boson (talk) 09:54, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
Many of the pronunciation guides are for non-English words. It's impossible to use American dictionary symbols to represent pronunciation even in well-known, common languages like French, German, or Mandarin Chinese, let alone the more obscure languages. Do the people wanting rid of IPA have any idea how to show the pronunciation of e.g. Mönchengladbach, Szczecin, Landes, Corse-du-Sud, or Xhosa. Having IPA for pronunciation is no more ridiculous than having chemical formulae for chemicals or mathematical notation for mathematical topics. If an alternative can be provided in addition, that's one thing, but it's going to be less precise than IPA. --Colapeninsula (talk) 14:32, 7 November 2013 (UTC)
I don't think anyone above advocated getting rid of the IPA symbols. I surely did not. I do advocate providing a less specialized and more accessible alternative in many cases, when this will serve many users well. DES (talk) 15:00, 7 November 2013 (UTC)
I agree. IPA has the benefit of being international and independent of language/dialect. However, other pronunciation guides can be appropriate. For example, from Calumet, Michigan, we have "Calumet (/kæl.juːˈmɛt/ kal-yew-MET)". This seems entirely appropriate to me, and is overall short enough to not be a burden to the lead. Chris857 (talk) 15:10, 7 November 2013 (UTC)

List criteria

In the debate on List of unusual deaths, I realized that there is currently a problem with policy that would permit, depending on certain interpretations of WP:IINFO (that I happen to disagree with, but others don't), all sorts of lists that are unencyclopedic, and that go against the spirit of WP:NOT.

You can play along - to do so, just come up with a somewhat vague adjective, and a noun, like "Bizarre" and "Coincidences" or "Unusual" and "Vegetables" or "Beautiful" and "views" or "Ugly" and "women" - then do a search of google books, and in many cases, you will find a plethora of compilations, as well as newspaper articles devoted to the subject of <adjective> + <nouns>, e.g. bizarre coincidences, unusual vegetables, and beautiful views, and ugly women, along with a requisite list. However, I think that there is a line, and List of bizarre coincidences, List of unusual vegetables, List of beautiful views and List of ugly women are on the other side of that line w.r.t. to relevance within a serious encyclopedia. The reason these lists should not be here is because the inclusion criteria are inherently subjective, and wildly so. If we decide to be nice and just list the beautiful women, a List of beautiful women would, per the currently proposed criteria at List of unusual deaths, include any woman described (by any RS) as beautiful or gorgeous or pretty or charming or stunning or alluring or appealing or charming or cute or dazzling or delicate or delightful or exquisite or good-looking or ... That would likely be quite a long list, even if we just kept it to the bios we have on wikipedia. Now, you might say, we would NEVER have a list of beautiful (or ugly) women, that would be demeaning, and a BLP violation, and should be deleted per IAR and so on and so forth - but the point remains, per the current interpretation of policy that *some* people have, such a list would not violate WP:NOT nor WP:LISTN. I happen to disagree, but the question is, what do we do? PBP above proposed that all lists must have objective inclusion guidelines, but that idea was voted down, so I'm not proposing that here.

What I am proposing, though, is that we do *something*. I don't have any specific ideas at the moment, but wanted to get a sense from people here - should we allow things like List of deaths considered tragic and List of vegetables considered unusual and List of views considered beautiful? If not, what policy changes could we make to filter those out, while allowing things like List of films considered the best, which many people cited as a useful list.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 22:46, 4 November 2013 (UTC)

More adjective + noun examples here

The following are other adjective + noun combinations for which RS can be found, but for which lists, IMHO, should not be generated.

  • Worst dictators [1]
  • Beautiful cities [2]
  • Bizarre foods [3]
  • Weird facts [4]
  • Bad poetry [5]
  • Beautiful views [6]
  • Ugly women [7]
  • Beautiful women [8]
  • Tragic deaths [9]
  • Unusual vegetables [10]
  • Evil men [11]
  • Evil wives [12]
  • Cruel stepmothers [13]
  • More to come!

References

  1. ^ http://www.forbes.com/pictures/mim45eeke/president-of-zimbabwe-robert-mugabe/
  2. ^ http://www.forbes.com/2010/01/22/paris-london-travel-lifestyle-travel-tourism-new-york-top-ten-cities.html
  3. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=S47FyNP4bl8C&lpg=PP1&dq=bizarre%20foods&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q=bizarre%20foods&f=false
  4. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=XrIbGJZQASIC&q=bibliogroup:%22Facts+to+Blow+Your+Mind%22&dq=bibliogroup:%22Facts+to+Blow+Your+Mind%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=4iZ4UvfpFqLZsATmuYLQAw&ved=0CDUQ6AEwAQ
  5. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=U3RZruyCKI0C&lpg=PP1&dq=bad%20poetry&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q=bad%20poetry&f=false
  6. ^ Swiss Panorama: The Most Beautiful Views; Christof Sonderegger, Patrick Werschler Weltbild-Verlag, 1997
  7. ^ http://www.nerve.com/content/the-twenty-sexiest-ugly-people
  8. ^ http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/gossip/sns-50-most-beautiful-celebs-pictures,0,7225497.photogallery#axzz2jikzCcPo
  9. ^ They Died Too Young: The Brief Lives and Tragic Deaths of the Mega-Star Legends of Our Times
  10. ^ Growing Unusual Vegetables: Weird And Wonderful Vegetables And How to Grow Them; Simon Hickmott; Eco-Logic Books, 2006
  11. ^ The World?'s Ten Most Evil Men; Cawthorne Nigel; John Blake Publishing, Limited, 2009
  12. ^ Evil Wives: Deadly Women Whose Crimes Knew No Limits; John Marlowe; Book Sales, Incorporated, Aug 19, 2009
  13. ^ Cruel Stepmother. A Full and Particular Account of the Execution and Beheavour [sic], on the Scaffold, of Janet Cooper, the Cruel Stepmother, who was Executed in the City of Derby on ... 3d January 1831 for the Atrocious Murder of Her Stepdaughter ... by Starvation, Etc; Janet Cooper; 1831
Please see #Proposal:_Lists_must_be_based_on_objective_criteria above where this was just discussed and where these types of lists are considered appropriate as long as reliable sources are the ones making the subjective call. --MASEM (t) 22:54, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
I am well aware of that discussion. I am making a different proposal here - that we do something, but something less dramatic than saying "all criteria must be completely objective". However, if we simply continue as is given the interpretation of certain players (e.g. it suffices to have a single book on the topic of <vague adjective> + <noun> to create a list, the result is madness, as I'm attempting to demonstrate.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 22:56, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
The easy way to see it is to consider that "List of X considered Y" should be the case where "Y" is a natural or common sense way to describe some X, and that it is a limiting factor, such that we are making a very narrow slice of all potential X (and of course, a source must make the claim X is Y for us). For example, I don't know if this was a typo but you give the example "List of vegetables considered usual", which would NOT create a limited division of all vegatables (on the other hand, if you meant "unusual", that's different.)
If you get to something like "List of women considered ugly", the key thing here is that BLP now applies, so just because some rag states a current actress is ugly is not sufficient to include. On the other hand, if historical text describe a certain long-deceased woman as being considered ugly, that's fine to include.
Basically, like the above discussion, I don't think there are any policy changes you can make; people will know a bad, unsourcable or maintainable list when they see it. --MASEM (t) 23:03, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
So you're really arguing that having a list of dead ugly women is fine? Or Evil men? Seriously? --Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 23:08, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
With the caveat that BLP applies, yes. Meaning that such lists will likely never include a living person unless that person has self-asserted themselves as that. --MASEM (t) 23:12, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
That just illustrates the problem - we have completely different views on what WP:NOT is intended to prevent. In my mind, it's intended to prevent this sort of thing - a list of historical women considered ugly, or fat, or vain, or mean, or cruel, ... would be great for the Fortean times, but wikipedia should not touch it with a 10 foot pole. --Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 23:15, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
The horse is smelling, Obiwankenobi. In your mind WP:NOT can be intended to prevent a lot of thing, but it currently does not, and there is no consensus so far for the view you intend to push. So far that some of your examples exist in some form right now: take "bad poetry", where we have Poetaster, that includes a list of poets considered bad. --cyclopiaspeak! 23:25, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
So what? wp:ose, etc. The current interpretation by SOME of WP:IINFO is different than mine, so we need to develop a new consensus of what is or what isn't permitted by same. Also, please stop with the "There is no consensus" - that's a rather meaningless phrase right now, as we haven't even had this discussion yet, it only started 2 minutes ago. If you don't want to join in, the exit is that way.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 23:39, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
(edit conflict)Oh no, I do want to join in. But it's not true that we haven't had this discussion yet. The discussion instead has already been done or is actually ongoing: in seven AfDs, five other AfDs, this DRV and the previous discussion here. And none of these discussion ever went close to suggesting consensus for what you are suggesting. Among people on your side of this debate, you're one of the most civil and reasonable, and I respect you a lot: but currently you are forum shopping, you are not listening and you are beginning to be disruptive. --cyclopiaspeak! 23:50, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
The fundamental problem is the policy is vague on these points, so we need to have a change at the policy level. Otherwise, there will continue to be people who argue both sides of it. I'm working towards finding a new consensus - please help. If we don't find a new consensus, the split AfDs will continue.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 23:59, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
There is already a consensus, even if a vocal minority keeps trying everything against it. --cyclopiaspeak! 00:03, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
(edit conflict)But that all comes down to sourcing, then, and that's why I doubt we'll actually ever see that list. Most sources that I've seen that create lists on this quality will be things like Cracked.com, etc., sites specifically for shock and humor value which we would not use for that. (On the other side, the lists that tend to promote the positive tend to be celebrity magazines and the like, their RS'ness for such purposes just as questionable). But if the NYTimes came out yesterday with an article that gave a scholarly treatment of the ugliest women in recorded history, with no living persons on the list, I cannot see how that cannot be a fair list to include on WP. That's how you make the distinction is not so much limiting the topic (as that begs what other topics you should start limiting), but to consider if the sources being used are really appropriate for such lists. --MASEM (t) 23:26, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
Masem, I've linked above RS for all of the topics. For List of unusual deaths, we are taking a Fortean times book as the strongest reliable source, so that would hence allow us to have "Stupid criminals" and "Weird sex" and "Bizarre behavior" and "Unconventional wisdom" and "Close shaves" and "Life's losers" and "Strange animal stories", amongst others [13]. Are you saying Fortean times is NOT a reliable source? --Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 23:39, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
Which I would not considered an RS for purposes of these lists, since, like Cracked, the purpose is for humor and shock, and not actual scholarly reporting. --MASEM (t) 23:42, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
The fortean times books, and spin-offs thereof, were considered by those !voting at the AfD as evidence that RS covered this topic. As such, by extension, all fortean times books (and the lists they generate) should be considered RS. Or not? If not, why not? I'm just trying to see what the extension of the principle just formed results in - in my opinion, the result is ridiculous, so it means we need to reconsider the policy on lists.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 23:46, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
(edit conflict)we are taking a Fortean times book as the strongest reliable source - We have academic publications as well. --cyclopiaspeak! 23:50, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
I know you're really enamoured of all of the academic sources we've been finding, so let's take a look at one: "Unusual death of a transvestite: identification of crime weapon and survival time*. - Cornetta S, Addante A, Zotti F, Dell'Erba A." - this is a rather terrible story of a transvestite (already a term some trans* people don't like) who had their head repeatedly bashed against a car. It's "unusual" only in the sense that maybe people aren't often murdered by having their heads bashed against a car - but it doesn't fit in with the other somewhat "ironic" deaths. Unusual to these guys is TOTALLY different than unusual to the Fortean times - can you imagine the Fortean times article? "A rather strange death occurred when a gang of men bashed the head of a transvestite against a door. It is the first time in known history that a transvestite has been killed by a group of men in this way." - the whole thing would come off as callous, like most of the rest of the list does to me now. Anyway, we're not here to discuss that particular article in detail, I'm here to discuss the larger problem with WP:IINFO which is interpreted in different ways by different factions.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 23:59, 4 November 2013 (UTC)
I wasn't involved in the AFD for the unusual deaths article, nor would I have supported the use of the Fortean Times (as well as many of the other sources) to support the article, but those aren't the only sources given, and many of the others are stronger RS, so if anything, there needs to be better refinement on the type of sourcing. A case in point is List of Internet phenomena; we could list virtually any meme that comes out from any basic RS site, but that would flood the article. Instead, we have used a requirement that more mainstream sources must be used to assure inclusion on the list, avoiding sites like Gawker or Boing Boing as the only allowance for inclusion despite the normal reliability of these sites. The same can be done on any of these lists. If you feel the issue is getting into IINFO territory, then the solution is to get refinement of sources, because certainly in the case of unusual deaths it is a subject of discussion in sources. --MASEM (t) 00:52, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
most would consider a forensic journal as a pretty reliable source for a 'unusual' death, but I have found potentially a thousand, or more, suicides from mostly common causes that would thus qualify (and we could likely find similar amounts more for heart attacks, cancer and diabetes), but to me it feels like a poor match with the current descriptions in the list of unusual deaths, because what a forensic journal considers unusual is quite different from what the Fortean times or the nytimes considers unusual - unusual in the medical literature seems to have little to do with the notability of The victim, nor the circumstances of the death, but much more about the very particular nature of the death, even if it is from ultimately common causes (eg a bullet to the head - several 'unusual' suicides in the literature find the type of bullet or the type of gun to be 'unusual') --Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 03:53, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
The way I read this and the way I think of it, list of unusual deaths can be improved by specifying two things, first what exactly is meant by "unusual" and secondly what sources such should be used to show this. That is, while the article title may be "list of unusual deaths", to avoid IINFO, it is implicitly really "list of unusual (as defined by blah) deaths as reported by blah". Which I am all for - listed that can be inheriently subjective need to set out strict requirements for inclusion in terms of sourcing, notability (in some cases) and the like to avoid the IINFO part, such as using a cross section of sources that all approach the subject concept in the same way (such as in the case of unusual deaths, those listed in medical/forensic journals). It is exactly the case that when we mix sources - between academic, newspaper, and blog-like sources as list of unusual deaths has - that there are the apparent IINFO problems. This, however, is less a policy issue (particularly from WP:NOT's standpoint) and more guidance on stand alone list construction. --MASEM (t) 04:03, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Unfortunately, several years of discussion on the talk page, and a recent RFC, have been unable to solve these problems; the current compromise seems to be "as long as any RS calls it unusual, we consider it unusual" - wikipedia consensus somehow defining "unusual" seems to not carry much weight with the inclusionists protecting this article, and trying to objectively define "unusual" or "bizarre" or "weird" or "strange" w.r.t deaths is an exercise in futility. Secondly, if we did do something like require only medical journals, the bulk of the existing content, esp historical content, would be deleted, and would be replaced with things like the cardiologists definition of unusual, which you can see an example of in the following article: "Heart 1996;75:451-454 doi:10.1136/hrt.75.5.451; Spontaneous coronary artery dissection: a neglected cause of acute myocardial ischaemia and sudden death.; C. Basso,G. L. Morgagni, G. Thiene"- "Unusual histological findings were cystic medial necrosis in one case, eosinophilic inflammatory infiltrates in four, and angiomatosis of the tunica adventitia in one."- thus from this one article, you would add 8 heart attacks, four of which exhibited eosinophilic inflammatory infiltrates, just from this one article; many hundreds more (just heart attacks!) would follow- I hope I don't need to add that heart attack is an incredibly common way of dying, but cardiologists don't care about that - they care about the very particular circumstances of the heart attack [14] - and then we could add 'unusual' deaths from cancer, diabetes, lung disease, and so on, resulting in a list of thousands, all just from 'common' causes where the academic in question hadn't seen this particular combination before. In short, if we went with only academic sources, the list would be incredibly long and incredibly boring or unparseable to non-specialists; if we eschew medical literature, we are basically saying Fortean times is a better source on 'unusual' than BMJ when it comes to death; if you just go with high quality news sources, like the new York times, you get articles like this one [15], where 'unusual' death is an inmate who commits suicide using his bedsheets; according to [16], 93% of inmates commit suicide by hanging, 66% of those using bedding as the instrument of hanging - thus, by any statistical measure of "unusual", suicide of an inmate by bedsheets is actually the most common way to go. Any of the other examples I give above would likely have similar problems; for example List of vegetables considered unusual is often, in RS, a list of vegetables or varieties that are unusual in the particular region the author is talking about, even though the same vegetable may be quite common somewhere else; unusual is almost always a subjective judgement, based on lived experience, and wikipedia making a claim that something is 'unusual' just based on a single source violates NPOV. I argued during the AFD that a list of "unique" deaths, where the means of death (not the circumstances surrounding it) were claimed to be unique and never before recorded, like 'death by a beaver' - could potentially work, but no-one took up this idea. Instead, we have a king who fell of his horse, because he was a king and because a pig caused him to trip, we have a bizarre and ironic death, and it joins the list, even though hundreds of people die every year falling off a horse. The result is a non-encyclopedic mish-mash of the worst sort. I'm hoping we can change policy, esp WP:LISTN and WP:IINFO to make such lists impossible or somehow force a much higher bar.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 05:11, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I still honestly do not see a need to change policy to "fix" this. IINFO is fine as it is (it's working fine for other topics), and from a notability standpoint list LISTN, you are not going to be able to set anything stronger without stepping on toes (this we discovered when actually trying to write LISTN). I'm not saying that the unusual death list is a good list, though, but AFD is not the venue to try to evoke fixes, where you will get people to come out to protect it by any means. Primarily, the biggest fix on unusual deaths is to set some clear definition by sourcing, and I would further argue that the person must be notable or attached to a notable article where most likely the death would be explained in more detail, so that page then becomes more of a navigation page than a list. But that's advice for a page like WP:SAL and not any policy. --MASEM (t) 07:10, 5 November 2013 (UTC)

I honestly don't understand the argument that we should enact policy so as to prevent content that doesn't actually exist. postdlf (talk) 02:30, 5 November 2013 (UTC)

Well, we've already done so - WP:NOT is a policy explicitly focused on preventing content thst should not exist. In this case, we do have examples of content that exists but which had differiing interpretations of WP:IINFO, that has led to 7 different AFDs over the last years with muddied consensus, so I'm hoping to define a more clear line. If List of unusual vegetables should not exist but List of unusual deaths should, what makes the difference? If they both should exist, then what about the other examples I give above - all with RS behind them? In other words, should <arbitrary adjective> + <arbitrary noun>, provided it is sourced, always result in a keep, or are there editorial judgements which need to come into play to set lines that should not be crossed?--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 03:53, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
If repeat, highly trafficked AFDs have not reveal a clear line, then there isn't one. And there's no "should" here. What's the difference between List of unusual deaths and List of unusual vegetables? The latter does not exist and never has because none of our volunteer editors has tried to create it. Why you should be terrified that it will and that the community will fail to address it properly, unless we pass some new law or something that has no foundation in actual practice or demonstrated consensus, that's what I don't understand here about this whole thing of yours. postdlf (talk) 07:02, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
the repeat AFDs are because there is a fuzzy spot in the policy, so we need to clear it up, one way or another - I'm not terrified, but I am concerned esp with statements by Cyclopia that many of the ridiculous lists I suggested as bad examples, they are thinking of creating, because of this policy vacuum. I'd rather move the line a few inches to the left, explicitly disallowing lists like the death list (which could still be kept per IAR if warranted). Otherwise, the current hole in policy permits far too many adjective + noun lists and I'd like to find a way to refine it to disallow certain types of subjective criteria. For example, list of unusual time signatures is an ok list, since the scope is limited and inclusion criteria is clear; list of unusual vegetables is a bad one otoh.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 14:13, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Given this discussion and the previous one (and of course the AFD) I think it's clear you can't ask to remove such lists as long as there are sources that make the subjective call for us. The better solution is to make sure on such lists that an inclusion metric is well-defined so that the quality of the reasoning for each item on the list is about the same instead of, as in the current case for unusual deaths which suffers from the broadness in the RS-ness of the sources given. --MASEM (t) 14:22, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
people argue to keep based on current policy - if we change or clarify policy, votes may shift. And I fundamentally disagree with you re: sources making a subjective call for us - we need to exercise editorial judgement to determine whether the subjective call is reasonable to be made per WP:RS , and whether the subjective adjective is useful and encyclopedic. I would argue that film critics, who watch and rate films as their job, are qualified to tell us which films are the 'worst' - in their opinion - and we could repeat that. However, a journalist or fortean times editor is generally not qualified to determine which death is unusual because they aren't exposed to the 150,000 daily deaths on the planet and don't have strong points of comparison. We need to come up with some filter such that not all adjective+noun lists with very subjective inclusion criteria can exist, I've given a dozen examples above, but adjective+noun combinations and the books about them easily run into the hundreds. For now only one or two lists has survived, so we need to make a stand to prevent the barbarian hoardes of subjective list creators :) --Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 14:44, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
The point is that these so-called subjective lists are acceptable, but their inclusion and content all rest on the type of editorial decisions we make about source to keep them in check or allow them at first. We already use editorial discretion all the time to narrow down what sources are included, article or list irregardless, so this is not a new change. The problem with the way you're approaching this, trying to restrict even having lists on a subjective criterion, is that even if you try to tailor how narrow the restriction is, there will probably be appropriate lists that fall within that exclusion, and as others have said, this is what policy creep does. The solution is to focus on tuning the requirements to be listed on such a list, though what sources are appropriate, what type of notability should be highlighted, or the like. --MASEM (t) 16:20, 5 November 2013 (UTC)

Obiwankenobi, why instead of keeping pushing this change of policy (which seems to be not going anywhere) don't you come to the talk pages of the relevant articles and help shaping inclusion criteria? I agree there can be an issue with different definitions of "unusual" coming from different sources. However this can be worked together on the article talk page -we can split the list in two kind of lists (List of deaths considered medically unusual and List of bizarre deaths, for example? just saying), or we can focus on one of the two kinds, or whatever. In any case, one things you and I can agree is that we need at least clearer and more objective inclusion criteria for these kind of articles. Since you seem to bring some good arguments to the table, I'd like to see them used constructively to help shaping these articles instead than trying to remove them.--cyclopiaspeak! 09:53, 5 November 2013 (UTC)

pls stop saying this isn't going anywhere, it's only been a day, I'd rather have a broader hearing , I know your opinion, but please give space for others to input. I'll help on inclusion criteria, just not now, as for now I think it's tragically flawed and impossible to fix in an encyclopedic fashion.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 14:16, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
  • Support: List of <adjective><noun> lists need to be avoided, and policy needs to be written to reflect that. pbp 14:18, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Some such lists are probably undesirable here, others are not. i don't see a good way to create a bright-line rule that wouldm't be a cure worse than any existing disease here. This smacks of WP:CREEP to me. Moreover, the proponents here have proposed more or less the same thing in #Proposal:_Lists_must_be_based_on_objective_criteria above, where the consensus was clearly against this sort of policy change. Recent AfDs linked from the above discussion indicate the same thing. I think WP:STICK is starting to apply here. DES (talk) 14:34, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Note: I opposed the objective criteria suggestion above, and there's nothing yet to oppose or support - it's just a discussion, to see if we can agree that the policy is sufficiently vague that 50% of !voters think it requires deletion while the other 50% believe it doesn't apply. I really believe that we can do better than that, but we'll never know until we try.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 16:13, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
We don't legislate general rules in order to eliminate specific things there is not an actual consensus to eliminate. Nor are any volunteer editors compelled to create content to satisfy some purported conceptual consistency. So your WP:WAX and WP:ALLORNOTHING jeremiads about an endless flow of all possible subjective lists, because the community supports some subjective lists, are just irrelevant straw men. So there's not even enough substance in the issue to carry on a discussion about what should be done about these purely hypothetical bugaboos. Nor is there any reason to fear that AFD would seize up in impotent paroxysms if someone created List of awesome people or any other such lists that a consensus would obviously find beyond the pale regardless of whether a line can be clearly drawn or drawn where you want it to be. The existence of contentious cases doesn't preclude the existence of easy ones. postdlf (talk) 17:01, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
The problem is, the same reasoning given by most !keep votes for supporting certain subjective lists can be used to support hundreds of other subjective lists. There is no discernment going on here; you obviously seem to feel that some [[List of <adjective> <nouns>]] should be deleted, and I'm suggesting that it is possible to refine policy to get more meat around how we make said determinations. I don't see any value in remaining intentionally vague here. At least 15 editors in the last discussion felt that the WP:IINFO applied and that the list should be deleted; more editors felt similarly in previous AFD discussions - again the existence of strong division on what WP:IINFO and WP:LISTN means suggests we need to add more language. Someone has added WP:DISCRIMINATORY but it's an essay and there are calls to unlink it as it doesn't represent a consensus view of what indiscriminate means, so we just need to get more clarity there - I don't know why but it seems like you think the status quo is good - but the status quo has resulted in constant AFDs for several articles. there has to be a better way.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 18:52, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Again, the reason the status quo works is that there probably several "List of <subjective adjective> <nouns>" that work without question, and by trying to define a limit against lists like "unusual deaths", you may cause these other lists to be seen as bad too. It's been readily identified that the sourcing is the problem at "unusual deaths" that is leading to indisriminate inclusion which can be fixed. --MASEM (t) 19:08, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
(ec) Obi-Wan: "The problem is, the same reasoning given by most !keep votes for supporting certain subjective lists can be used to support hundreds of other subjective lists." Who is using it in this manner? See my above comment about compelled "conceptual consistency" and how that's not a thing here ("Gawrsh, someone thinks my reasoning supporting this one list could be used to support the completely unrelated List of friendly-looking plants. I guess I have to write that now...").

Or let's play along and assume your worst case scenario occurs, and your feared flood of every possible permutation of "List of <adjective><nouns>" flows down the article creation slippery slope. The resulting AFDs will give us a lot more data points from which to plot that bright(er) line you are yearning for. postdlf (talk) 19:14, 5 November 2013 (UTC)

We don't need to do that - just search the AFD archives, you will find dozens of examples of lists that were deleted because of "subjective inclusion guidelines" - even though for the particular topics, there was sourcing. Here is a somewhat recent example: Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/List_of_unusual_personal_names_(5th_nomination) - it took 5 times to get it deleted - but there are at least 100 AFDs where accusations were leveled of subjective inclusion criteria, and many of those articles ended up being deleted. We don't need to wait for the flood to collect data points, we have data points by simply looking at the articles that were already deleted; but it would make things a lot easier if we could specify in what cases do subjective inclusion criteria go too far, and in what cases are they permitted? --Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 19:32, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Reading that one on unusual names, the reasons for deletion focused heavily on BLP issues, which I've alluded to before. Arguably, I would think it is completely possible to have such a list, with the first and foremost restriction that the person must be blue-link notable, followed by having strong RS sourcing. How long such a list would then be, I don't know, but again, here it is about the sourcing. If you can fairly argue that it is impossible to creating sourcing and notability requirements to limit including in a subjective list, that's a fair reasoning for removing/avoiding the list. But I'd still not use that to explicitly prevent subjective lists. --MASEM (t) 19:42, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Let's take a specific example - List of men considered evil - this is eminently sourceable: "Evil Men; Author Miranda Twiss;Translated by Shelley Klein;Publisher Michael O'Mara Books, Limited, 2003"; and we certainly wouldn't have many challenges finding other RS that call Hitler or Pol Pot "evil", and we could only put dead guys there to avoid BLP issues. But I still think it would be a very bad thing for wikipedia to have such a list. I think it would violate WP:IINFO, because intersections based simply on an adjective are in general not very useful. But current policy isn't strong enough to delete such a list, people could simply claim, as they have elsewhere, "This is sourced!" - so at the end of the day it becomes a !vote - I've seen many other AFDs like this, where neither side really has policy to back them up, it just becomes the weight of participants on one side or another. If we could come up with something stronger, a refinement to WP:IINFO, that would prevent List of evil men and List of ugly women, I think that would simplify a lot of future AFDs.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 20:17, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
"so at the end of the day it becomes a !vote" - welcome to Wikipedia, which is driven by consensus. If you think a list is a bad idea but several others have no problem, consensus will win out. There is no solution that fits all cases here that otherwise does not threaten to discriminate on legitimate subjective lists. The only thing with lists that subjectively categorize people is that the sourcing must respect BLP, and if the list is nothing without that, then yes, we shouldn't have it. Now, granted, one thing I saw in one discussion is fixing the name of these lists , to simply avoid the implicit way these seem to make these factual. For example, I would not use "List of evil men" but "List of men considered evil", which clearly implies we're reporting what other sources say. I'm sure that doesn't resolve your issues but it is a step to make it clearer that these are subjective lists but where the subjectivity is offloaded from WP. --MASEM (t) 20:47, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Masem, you say there's no solution, but we haven't even started exploring solutions yet. Can you please stop trashing this idea until we've had time to brainstorm a bit about it? I'm not at all convinced, and I do think we can do better in the policy than we have now.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 20:56, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
The problem is that you're staring from the position of WP:IDONTLIKEIT and asking to change policy based on that. Given that this discussion was just had in the previous thread, it's clear that its not going to be "fixed" at policy-level. I'm all for solutions that are based on using limiting sourcing, but that's going to be something at a guideline level and not policy, and it's not about going to restricting a list due to it being "<subjective> <noun>" lists (arguably, since we're talking standalone lists, that's akin to notability, which is a guideline level). --MASEM (t) 21:04, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Incorrect. I actually like the list, I find it interesting, and I think it would have a great location in wikispace. I just think it doesn't belong here, and I think WP:IINFO, the way I read it, should preclude its (and many other lists) existence - however, that interpretation of WP:IINFO isn't held by everybody, they think if it's not given as an example in WP:IINFO, therefor WP:IINFO doesn't apply - which is why I think we should update WP:IINFO. There's nothing fixed in stone about WP:NOT, it gets updated a lot, so your continued calls for "it's not going to be fixed" is frankly not very helpful at a discussion board about potentially fixing policy. If you don't want to help, please at least don't hinder this discussion. I think some <subjective adj> <noun> lists could survive, we just need to think about it more carefully rather than throw our hands up and declare "it's not fixable in policy".--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 21:25, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
If you don't want to help, please at least don't hinder this discussion. - Translation: "If you disagree with me on changing policy, go away". Cute. --cyclopiaspeak! 21:39, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────The point is this: I would hope it is obvious that it is completely possible to have a list like List of unusual deaths, if the list inclusion metric was tighten down. I don't know what the "right" list inclusion metric would need to be, but I am certain that no one would question this list if the sourcing and requirements used for it kept it to a narrow focus using highly-reliable sources, and these requirements were explained as part of the list's lead. (Determining that requirement, that's a separate matter). Considering this, and applying to all the other examples that have been mentioned, I find it hard to say that we can use or change IINFO as a policy to disallow these types of lists, since they are allowed. The problem on these lists is not because they are <subjective adjective> <noun>, but because there are not well-established requirements on when an item can be included. List of unusual deaths is in poor shape not because "usual deaths" is subjective, but because the allowances for sources is too broad covering everything from medical journals to things like blog-like sources. It does sort of allude to the earlier issue that what is "unusual" will be defined differently by different source types, but that still again points at having stronger requirements for inclusion so that the definition of "unusual" is much narrower and keeping the list focused. In fact, that almost suggests that there could be multiple lists, depending on which way you spin "unusual" (medically unusual, ironic deaths, unexpected deaths, etc.), as long as there are tight requirements on each.
Which comes down to the point that we're not talking about changing policy, but changing how one constructs a stand alone list. I agree that in a guideline we can add language that if you are dealing with a topic that is subjective, you need to make sure that inclusion requirements are well-set to be clear and narrow the potential misuse of the subjective term (eg like "unusual" here). But as for changes to policy to outright remove/restrict these types of lists - even if not all of them - is just not appropriate from the present discussion. "List of <subjective> <noun>" in of itself is not a bad construct, it is when the list requirements are not well constructed that it gets out of hand, but that is always a point that editing and trimming (and not deletion) can fix. Now, as for getting editors to come to a consensus as to what to include, that's a separate issue. But just because they can't come to a more narrower definition for a list doesn't mean the list is bad. --MASEM (t) 21:50, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
I'd suggest you take a look at the talk page, where editors have attempted to come to consensus, including a recent RFC, on the inclusion criteria, but the result is a muddied no-consensus as far as I can tell (I came into this due to a request to close that discussion, and reading through it I came to the conclusion that there was no consensus, and several of those !voting at the RFC said it's better to just delete it, as coming to clear inclusion criteria is impossible because the word "unusual" is incredibly vague.) As I've demonstrated elsewhere in greater detail, if we consider that there are 150,000 deaths per day, even if "unusual" was defined to be a death that isn't seen more often than 0.1% of the time, that would still mean 150 new "unusual" deaths per day. I estimated we could easily find at least 1,000 suicide attempts that were called "unusual" in the medical literature - and this is before searching the literature for synonyms in english and other languages. I really think that's too many. Attempts to force the list to only include "notable" people were also not able to pass consensus. We could attempt to really force the issue, and propose that no death can be recorded unless (1) the dead person is themselves notable and has an article (or could have an article) on WP; (2) a RS medical source calls the death unusual and (3) a RS media source calls the death notable - looking for a high standard of editorial control here. That would at least give you a more manageable intersection, and would call out those cases where both a medical professional and a non-professional description of unusual coincides, so we'd be getting the ones that "everyone" considers unusual. But the chances of those criteria passing are about 1 in a million, given the people protecting that page currently.--Obi-Wan Kenobi (talk) 22:11, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Again, you're conflating the issue with difficulty in achieving a consensus for inclusion (has this been put to an RFC to get wider involvement and dislodge it from apparent ownership issues?) with the appropriateness of such lists. Everyone agrees taxes are necessary but no one agrees on how taxes should be implemented, but that doesn't mean we get rid of the tax system. There is no easy drop in solution that will "fix" the problem that could harm other parts of WP. Everything "wrong" with list of unusual deaths is fixable within current policy and dispute resolution practice. --MASEM (t) 23:01, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
Regardless, it's pointless to be rehashing the AFD here. And discontent with that list is really all that's been driving this thread and the previous one. So let's move on. postdlf (talk) 23:12, 5 November 2013 (UTC)
What Postdlf said. Don't try to change policy because you didn't get your way. Accept that consensus is against you, get over it, and go improve some other area of the encyclopedia. Jclemens (talk) 05:55, 6 November 2013 (UTC)
... because some subjects are beyond hope of being improved. -- TRPoD aka The Red Pen of Doom 03:56, 8 November 2013 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject Belgium/Alternate language names has been marked as a guideline

Wikipedia:WikiProject Belgium/Alternate language names (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) has recently been edited to mark it as a guideline. This is an automated notice of the change (more information). -- VeblenBot (talk) 02:00, 8 November 2013 (UTC)

Notice: RfC regarding how anime and manga topics are covered has started

Please see Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Anime and manga/franchise coverage RfC. Sven Manguard Wha? 20:50, 8 November 2013 (UTC)

WP:HONORIFIC as applied to Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh

In the context of this requested move discussion, was WP:HONORIFIC misapplied here?. WP:HONORIFIC, states: Where an honorific is so commonly attached to a name that the name is rarely found in English reliable sources without it, it should be included. Throughout academic literature on the subject the full title is commonly used and in the popular press the word "Bhagwan" was not understood widely a religious title: he was generally called Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. If the honorific issue does actually apply in naming this article, wouldn't WP:NCCL be more accurate? It seems we have no rules for individuals who, within a specific religious tradition, are considered human incarnations of "god"; but we do, for example, use "pope" in article titles. Semitransgenic talk. 17:09, 9 November 2013 (UTC)

Increasing length of time for AfD discussions

There is a strong consensus against implementing this proposal. — Mr. Stradivarius ♪ talk ♪ 11:35, 9 December 2014 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

I'm still relatively new here, so I'm not sure it's really my place to be making such a suggestion, but I've noticed that articles for deletion discussions are frequently relisted multiple times due to lack of consensus, in many cases because there are no !votes either way. I'd like to propose increasing the length of an AfD discussion, either to 15 or 30 days with a single relist allowed - this allows a longer base period for discussion and hopefully will prevent the multiple admin reviews and relists due to lack of consensus. If after one 15 or 30 days relist, a consensus is still not reached, the AfD should be closed as no-consensus. Peterborough Street (talk) 20:42, 20 November 2014 (UTC)

I don't think it's particularly helpful to close as no consensus too readily. Further, the longer the list, the less people will look at the bottom of it. Clearing out as much as possible and relisting the rest at the top maximises the chances that there will be a resolution. Adam Cuerden (talk) 21:45, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
My idea with making AfD 30 days would be to reduce the number of articles being sent for deletion. If the nom knows they'll have to defend why an article should be deleted for that length of time, it might encourage editors to try make more improvements to the article first. Peterborough Street (talk) 12:29, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
  • The problem with that would be that some AfD discussions are so done by the time 7 days is up.There's not really an issue with relisting discussions a couple of times, although I think in the past there have been discussions about having a maximum number of relistings (before closing as no consensus). Dylanfromthenorth (talk) 22:19, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
I was actually thinking about that last night, perhaps include a clause that says if after 7 days there is an overwhelming consensus to delete or keep, then a Sysop could choose to action the article.Peterborough Street (talk) 12:29, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
Why not have the lists separated into weeks? This will help prevent articles (and images) getting deleted during vacation times when most editors are otherwise engaged on other things. There are many deletionists that seem to live on WP 24/7/356. Is it possible to get any graph showing the annual periods of deletions and those that eventually get reinstated?--Aspro (talk) 23:50, 20 November 2014 (UTC)
I agree with Adam. The benefit to relisting is that it puts the ones that need more discussion back at the top of the list. It might also be useful to make a list like User:Cyberbot I/Current AfDs more prominent, where people can see at a glance which AFDs need more comments. Mr.Z-man 15:21, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
Article content Requests for Comments run for 30 days. Does anyone know what the historical reason is why content RFCs run longer than AFDs, or why AFDs run longer than content RFCs? I assume that it is the desirability of getting rid of articles that need deleting but that do not qualify for criteria for speedy deletion or proposed deletion. This may be a semi-exception to the principle that there are no deadlines. Since there appears to have been a deliberate decision to make deletion discussions different from content discussions, I would oppose making deletion run 30 days, especially since I have seen many article that really are worthless. I would support 10 days and be neutral to 14 days. We should also encourage nominators to publicize AFDs in WikiProjects, in the way that AFCs are publicized. I would oppose extending AFDs to 30 days, because some articles really need deleting, while content disputes need resolution, not quick resolution Robert McClenon (talk) 16:25, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
Truly problematic articles that have no place on Wikipedia could be deleted after a shorter timeframe at a sysop's discretion, as could AfD's where there is an overwhelming consensus to delete or keep. I'd honestly happier if we even went to 14 days, I'd just like to see more of an opportunity to discuss, make changes, and save articles where the potential is there (assuming WP:V and WP:GNG are satisfied) Peterborough Street (talk) 16:46, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
Robert McClenon, content RFCs "run for 30 days" because they don't. The 30-day 'timer' is a myth. Content RFCs can and should run for exactly as long as the participants think the discussion is useful, and then they should be closed. The RFC bot (as in, a completely mindless script that has no idea what the state of the discussion is) automatically removes RFC tags from discussions after 30 days, because participants routinely forget to remove the RFC tags themselves, and the community doesn't benefit from having ages-old stale RFCs in the central lists.
(Does anyone else remember when AFDs were just five days?) WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:03, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose extending duration of discussions. There are some XfDs that are clear-cut as delete or keep but don't fall under "speedy" or the "snowball clause" which means that in order to close them before the discussion period is up would require an "iar" close or an additional clause to be added with the extension of duration that says snow/speedy does apply in those cases adding a level of bureaucracy that I think is unnecessary. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 16:53, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose extending AFDs. I haven't been active at AFD for a while, but my experience in the past has been that most comments appear during the first three days, and that comments after those first three days rarely change the outcome. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:03, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose we already have options to relist if there are a lack of comments or it's determined that further debate is needed. Also as mentioned simply because an article like List of fictional characters who wear fingerless gloves (yes that was real) did not meet any of the CSD criteria does not mean that the AFD should have to run for at least 15 days.--69.157.253.160 (talk) 23:15, 21 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose AfDs that need longer to be discussed are relisted. No point lengthening the process arbitrarily. Lukeno94 (tell Luke off here) 08:56, 27 November 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose No reason to double the length of discussions that have reached a consensus, when you can just relist the ones that haven't. --SarekOfVulcan (talk) 15:52, 1 December 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose The existing procedure works fine- if the reviewing admin doesn't think enough time has gone by to generate a consensus, he can relist the discussion. There's no need to extend them even more by changing procedure because many AfD's are actually ready to be closed after a week, and there's already a procedure in place for those that aren't.--Slon02 (talk) 05:06, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose Not sure what needs fixing - if an AFD is not conclusive it can be relisted. Some are relisted two, three times. That's 20+ days in some cases, more than enough. §FreeRangeFrogcroak 05:12, 4 December 2014 (UTC)
  • Oppose What needs to be addressed is the constant relisting of articles by admins who aren't competent enough to close them after 7 days. Lugnuts Dick Laurent is dead 08:09, 9 December 2014 (UTC)

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