Wikipedia:Village pump (policy)/Archive 131

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We need changes to the 'further reading section' on articles

Many articles use further reading sections with links to different pages and this is pretty much the same as the WP:External links and it becomes a headache to decide which link goes where. It also looks like a mess sometimes on the article with all these sections. it could even confuse the readers.

What I propose is this: If the recommended further reading section cites to a book or an article, or essay or website or whatever, but no link exists, then we can put it in further reading. But if it is a linked work, not counting a preview, then they should be made to go in external links.

Otherwise we have too many sections with links, when they can all be put together if there is a link, and previews don't count. If the full material is there, then the link can just go in external links section but only provided it's the full material.

Proposed--Taeyebar 00:13, 28 September 2016 (UTC)

  1. Support this proposal as otherwise it can be confusing whether to put a link in "Further reading" or "External links". Rubbish computer (HALP!: I dropped the bass?) 14:07, 3 November 2016 (UTC)
FYI the current guideline for further reading sections is at WP:FURTHER, and is quite minimal. Someguy1221 (talk) 00:25, 28 September 2016 (UTC)
Thanks Someguy1221 for pointing it out. It is indeed short. What do you propose we do?--Taeyebar 17:26, 30 September 2016 (UTC)
I would say that the section is too long. If I could be bothered I would be able to edit it down to half the size or less without losing anything important. Most other policies and guidelines could do with even more culling of unimportant waffle. Having said that I would support the merging of "further reading" and "external links". Both sections perform the same function, and there is no need to distinguish between further reading available online and that which is not. (talk) 20:58, 30 September 2016 (UTC)
Can other users comment also here please?--Taeyebar 22:04, 3 October 2016 (UTC)
I am not a fan of the further reading section because it attracts way too much link spam. Personally, I would support keeping only highly relevant and well cited books/peer reviewed papers as part of further reading and exclude everything else. --Lemongirl942 (talk) 15:46, 4 October 2016 (UTC)

If you really want to definitely remove one of the two sections you should first rename "Further reading" into "Further information", or something similar. But that is not what excites me much. I am more interested on another change, which can be seen in the German Wiki, i.e. the moving of "References" section to the very bottom of the page, sot that the sequence will be:

  • See also
  • Bibliography
  • Further information (or Further reading + External links)
  • Commons, Sister project and Portal templates, and any other template
  • References (Notes)

The reason for this reshuffling is quite self-explanatory. Carlotm (talk) 02:35, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

I slightly share the concern. Chicbyaccident (Please notify with {{SUBST:re}} (Talk) 17:39, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

I don't really support re-shuffling. I just think if 'further reading' has linked articles/websites/e-books then we can just put them in external links, because it's essentially the same thing.--Taeyebar 18:10, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

But they are not always "linked articles/websites/e-books", so you'll still have FR sections in some articles. @Lemongirl942:, in my experience the linkspam is always in External links, not Further reading. But getting rid of one section or the other is not going to stop the spam. - Sitush (talk) 18:37, 11 October 2016 (UTC)

This seems to ignore an important point that the "External links section should be kept to a minimum". A couple of links is OK, but I've seen articles with more than 30 External Links, one of which I edited down to ten or so. Why change something that works? For example, an obscure article named Hanny's_Voorwerp that I've edited has 3 External links and 7 Further Reading links, many of which are internal Wiki links. What is accomplished by moving these 7 FR links? If an editor sees messy links in FR then tidy or update them. As mentioned above, it's the links themselves that cause the spam, not the section itself. Richard Nowell (talk) 08:54, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

I don't remember where I heard this recommendation, but I've generally treated 'Further Reading' contents as being potential references in that they either extend the article content or articulate the content in a usefully different fashion. If, in fact, a 'Further Reading' item were used as a reference, it should be removed from that section. I've very seldom added to 'External Links' and would generally consider such to be not suitable for use as references, though they would also extend the article's content space. --User:Ceyockey (talk to me) 01:00, 15 October 2016 (UTC)

You may be interested in Wikipedia:Further reading, which has some more information. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:53, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

WhatamIdoing, somebody already linked it above on the thread.--Taeyebar 23:14, 28 October 2016 (UTC)

WP:FURTHER is a section of a style guideline. WP:Further reading is a separate page that explains some of the considerations in greater detail. You probably want to read both of them. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:22, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

What could be improved upon in a specific Further Reading section, such as in the article Citizen science? All the titles are externally linked. Richard Nowell (talk) 17:47, 29 October 2016 (UTC)

Richard Nowell, then what I'm proposing is if that's the case for such an article, all LINKED materials should go in external links and all NON-LINKED 'further reading' titles can stay in further reading.--Taeyebar 23:03, 4 November 2016 (UTC)

Request for comment on PC protection

Hello. You are invited to comment on this RfC regarding (1) the streamlining of the pending changes reviewing process and (2) the proposed protection of certain articles with Level 1 Pending Changes protection. Please do not comment here—your support or opposition to the proposals should be indicated in the relevant sections, and general discussion should be occur in the "General discussion" section at the bottom of the RfC page. Thank you. Biblio (talk) Reform project. 21:14, 6 November 2016 (UTC)

The RfC has snow-closed as oppose. Gestrid (talk) 05:32, 7 November 2016 (UTC)

Should MILHIST's Notability Guide be made a notability guideline?

Considering that the wikipedia page for notability links to it for military personnel, should it be officially declared a notability guideline? It is currently only an essay. Iazyges Consermonor Opus meum 23:35, 8 November 2016 (UTC)


For the English-language Wikipedia, should we use American spelling, British spelling, or both?

(If both, is it obvious that in any given article only one spelling should be used?)Bh12 (talk) 01:28, 10 November 2016 (UTC)

Basically, "we don't prefer either but be consistent within an article" is the top-level advice to follow here. There's a couple of exceptions (covering a regional topic, direct quotes). A couple of guidelines here for your perusal: MOS:ENGVAR, MOS:S. ^demon[omg plz] 01:54, 10 November 2016 (UTC)

Thank you.


Self-nominations for the 2016 English Wikipedia Arbitration Committee elections are open

Self-nominations for the 2016 English Wikipedia Arbitration Committee elections are officially open. The nomination period runs from Sunday 00:00, 6 November (UTC) until Tuesday 23:59, 15 November 2016 (UTC). Editors interested in running should review the eligibility criteria listed at the top of Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee Elections December 2016/Candidates then create a candidate page following the instructions there. --Floquenbeam (talk) 00:47, 7 November 2016 (UTC)

Separate articles for covers

Hello, everyone. I wrote the following proposal here two years ago, but I'm copying it here as it's something supposed for the whole Wikipedia and not only a certain article:

Hi, I wanted you to notice the fact that on the Spanish Wikipedia we've reached a consensus that we can create separate articles for cover versions if they meet the general policies. I think that's so useful, and even more in such famous songs like this one, wich have been covered many times, some of which are notable enough so a separate article can be written. We avoid having multiple infoboxes, which are there, in fact, for very different things: the "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" cover by the Flaming Lips and Miley Cyrus have a lot of differences in many senses from the Beatles songs (year, or decade, genre, performers, composers of some elements, critical reception, commercial reception, singles chronology, Wikipedia categories, etc.). Not to mention that many readers can find themselves confused by an article of the Beatles that eventually can end up talking extensively about Miley Cyrus. So, in Spanish we have the original Beatles song and the cover version. I think that it should be considered for the English edition :) --Jorge (talk) 04:14, 15 November 2016 (UTC)

While we do have a few exceptions... past consensus here on the English WP has been to NOT have separate articles for cover versions of songs... but to include them in a "cover versions" section within the song's article. Of course, consensus can always change. Whether it will change is another question entirely (personally, I would be against separate articles, but that's just me). Blueboar (talk) 17:02, 15 November 2016 (UTC)
The consensus here has been against separate articles for quite awhile (see WP:COVERSONG). Although in some respects a cover may be notable (notable artist, charts, awards, etc.), seldom is there enough discussion about it in reliable sources from which to build a standalone article, which is necessary to meet WP:NSONGS. Since it is adapted from the original, any discussion of the events that lead up to the songwriting, lyrics meanings, compositional techniques, etc., would just duplicate the article on the original. Most of the information is about when and where it was recorded, its place in the artist's catalogue, charts, performances, etc. The Spanish "Lucy" by the Flaming Lips article is a good example. It says nothing about the song, except charts and a few performances (the only references are to Billboard charts and one performance review). It is unlikely that this article will ever be expanded and may be a WP:PERMASTUB. I don't think that its inclusion in the main Beatles song article would be confusing, since it is relatively short (too short for its own infobox IMO). Including multiple renditions in one article also has the benefit of showing a song's development over the years (see "Train Kept A-Rollin'", "Stormy Monday", "Baby, Please Don't Go", etc.). —Ojorojo (talk) 19:19, 16 November 2016 (UTC)

League seasons

Hello. Is there a policy about league seasons of a national championship? I haven't find anything in Wikipedia:Notability (sports). Xaris333 (talk) 11:29, 12 November 2016 (UTC)

I don't quite understand. What are you thinking of creating? An article for each championship year? Dig Deeper (talk) 01:39, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
Dear Xaris333 , please see WP:NSEASONS. -- (talk) 19:11, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
WP:NSEASONS is for individual seasons of teams in top professional leagues, as these articles almost always meet the notability requirements. Like 2015–16 Leicester City F.C. season. My question is about articles like 2015–16 Football League Two. Xaris333 (talk) 19:16, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
I'd have thought 2015–16 Football League Two meets WP:GNG. Local newspapers dedicate acres of space to this sort of thing. --Tagishsimon (talk) 19:29, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
So we don't have specific guidelines. Just the general notability guideline. Xaris333 (talk) 20:09, 17 November 2016 (UTC)

Proposal: AfD with no participants should be relisted indefinitely, not closed, until there is at least one other participant

Please see and discuss the proposal here. --Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus| reply here 06:41, 18 November 2016 (UTC)

Adding credit line to the article


Imagine a User:John Doe writes a Wikipedia article. Is he allowed to add the following to the bottom of the article?

==About the author==

This article is written by [ John Doe], an established expert in the field of XXXXX.

Best regards,
Codename Lisa (talk) 07:42, 17 November 2016 (UTC)

If I understand correctly your question, no. WP:Attribution#Citing yourself. When you write (actually create) a new article WP:RS must be used. Anyone can edit it. So you are not an author but a content creator. Your participation is recorded in the history. Short route to chaos if it was permitted. Leaky Caldron 07:55, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
Well, in the case of the article that I am looking at, WP:RS is amply used, but the primary contributor felt he needs to add such an advertisement section, which I felt was wrong but also felt I need to know how to tell him not to do it, e.g. cite a good policy. Best regards, Codename Lisa (talk) 09:37, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
If you need to quote chapter-and-verse, the policy is WP:OWNBEHAVIOR, and the exact wording (at the time of writing) is Since no one "owns" any Wikipedia content, content should not be signed. The exact contributions of all editors are seen with their names on the page history.; if someone's having trouble understanding why we don't allow this, a good way to explain it is that "anyone can edit" could mean that in 30 seconds time the article may be changed to say something with which they profoundly disagree, and do they really want their name attached to it as the author in that case? ‑ Iridescent 09:57, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
Thanks a lot. I'll bear that in mind.
Of course, this certain article (Maybe I should name it and provide a diff?) is so specialized that I doubt anyone except this certain author can make such a dramatic change in the near future: 23 sources, 22 of them journals, 18 of them paywalled. It is only lucky that you told me about OWNBEHAVIOR. Best regards, Codename Lisa (talk) 13:05, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
Yes please, what is the title of the article? Herostratus (talk) 02:07, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
Virtual machining. --Tagishsimon (talk) 02:20, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
OK. Well, the article seems OK now, and the editor has been blocked (not for signing articles, but for multiple accounts, I infer that that all this was part of a self-promotion scheme). Herostratus (talk) 18:27, 18 November 2016 (UTC)

Talk pages vs. reference desks

I would like to know if anyone has an opinion about discontinuing talk pages (applies only to articles, not templates, categories, etc.) and using the reference desks instead for improvements. Talk pages of articles that are not on many people's watchlists are often not bothered for a long time. Georgia guy (talk) 19:51, 19 November 2016 (UTC)

Do you mean these reference desks? Cause those are for things that have nothing to do with Wikipedia. And dumping all article improvement talk on them would be an enormously bad idea. Besides the overwhelming nature of those things it would make it harder to focus on the article you want. We have be bold for a reason. If an article isn't watched by a lot of people (note that watching an article also watches its talk page) then you are invited to just improve it. --Majora (talk) 23:49, 19 November 2016 (UTC)
Let's think. Replace 5+ million talk pages with 1 reference desk page. What could go wrong. --Tagishsimon (talk) 00:24, 20 November 2016 (UTC)
Georgia guy you are correct that there are, at a minimum, 10s of 1000s of article that are not on any active editors watchlists. You can go to the Wikiproject(s) listed on the talk page to make suggestions/ask questions. Granted many of them are now inactive so the next step is to go the various noticeboards (Biographies of living persons/Noticeboard for example) available. Majora's point about just taking the bull by the horns and editing a given article is a good one. MarnetteD|Talk 00:30, 20 November 2016 (UTC)

What is our approach to trademarks in this difficult case?

There is a type a rifle (lightweight intermediate cartridge magazine-fed air-cooled semi-automatic rifle with a rotating lock bolt, actuated by direct impingement gas-operation or long/short stroke piston operation). The originating model of this type of rifle was named "AR-15". AR-15's are still made, by the Colt Manufacturing Company, under that trademarked name.

Very similar rifles are made by some other companies. They are (universally, I gather) referred to as "AR-15's" -- not only informally by gun people in conversation, but in the pages of gun magazines and so forth. There is simply no generic term for these entities -- "AR-15" is the only word for these things. (It's sort of as if there was no term "sports car", only the term "Ferrari" for all sports cars, or whatever.)

In spite of this, Colt Manufacturing defends its trademark, I am given to understand. The fact that (I gather) gun magazine editors etc. don't pay attention to them on this subject indicates they are not defending successfully. But they are trying, and no judge has formally ruled that they have failed and that "AR-15" has falled to the status of a genericized trade mark. De facto it may have (although I question Wikipedia's standing to make that judgement). (FWIW I think no non-Colt manufacturer has gone so far as to use a model name of "AR-15", though; whether other manufactures go so far as writing in their marketing materials "Meet the StreetSweeper, the newest AR-15 from North American Veeblefletzer", I do not know.)

So... how do we refer to these types of a rifles? Can our article about this type of rifle be named AR-15s (a suggested name)? How about AR-15 variants (the current name) or AR-15-type rifles?

I believe that is we had an article listing brands of facial tissue, we could not -- even if we wanted to -- title it Brands of kleenex. Correct? What about Brands of kleenex-like tissue -- maybe that would be OK? This is above my pay grade.

The problem here is there is no alternative term for "AR-15", as there is for "kleenex" (you can say "facial tissue"). (Instead of "AR-15" you can say "lightweight intermediate cartridge magazine-fed air-cooled semi-automatic rifle with a rotating lock bolt, actuated by direct impingement gas-operation or long/short stroke piston operation" bat that's too long to be useful.)

We certainly want to avoid violating Colt's trademark rights, helping push their valuable trademark toward genericized-trademark status, or position ourselves to be the subject (at least in theory) of a valid cease-and-desist letter. On the the other hand, is there any point to being behind the curve if de facto Colt has really already lost the game?

I see no useful guidance at Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Trademarks or Wikipedia:Copyrights, nor is the Wikipedia:Copyright problems board the right venue for this, so I ask here for guidance. Herostratus (talk) 01:02, 17 November 2016 (UTC)

Even if we referred to all assault rifles as AR-15s, we would not be violating Colt's trademark, since we are not selling any guns, nor are we coordinating with anyone who is. Trademark law in the US has precisely zero bearing on how third-parties refer to a trademark-holder's products. So you can just ignore the legal issues and follow the sources, whatever they say. Also, I'm surprised to hear this. I had always seen them referred to as "AR-15 style weapons" and the like. Maybe we're reading different sources. Someguy1221 (talk) 10:14, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
Go with the sources and call them AR-15s. Add a name section at the top like the Vacuum cleaner article has done for Hoover - X201 (talk) 10:48, 17 November 2016 (UTC)
We're not talking about how we refer to Colt product, but rather to non-Colt products. My understanding is that, if in a published movie review a person writes "In the final scene, Julia reaches for a kleenex as she xeroxes the love letter" (rather than "...reaches for a tissue as she photocopies...") they are at least theoretically liable to get request-for-correction letters from Kimberly-Clark and Xerox Corporation. And if they egregiously ignore that, I believe that Kimberly-Clark and Xerox may at least theoretically request an injunction (not sure about that part). Is this not correct? And if it is correct, it would apply to us as much as to Movie Reviews Magazine, I would think, and it that is true, why should we give less consideration to Colt then we would to any other company with a valuable trademark? Herostratus (talk) 02:04, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
No, Herostratus. No no no no no. Someguy1221 has already explained this, above. You infringe someone else's trademark if you seek to trade by using their trademark. You do not do anything more than piss them off if you use their trademark in a way in which they'd prefer you not to - such as the example you give. Here's our very crappy article on Trademark infringement. Trademarks can become Generic trademarks, and in doing so, can lose all of their former power. Companies may try to stop this happening by getting pissy with the reviewer in your example, seeking to stop her from using their precious trademark in a general way. The reviewer is entitled to bid them stick their concerns where the sun does not shine. The company can certainly apply for an injunction, but not even an East Texas court will give them one. --Tagishsimon (talk) 02:19, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
Well, it doesn't matter how many no's you string together, I don't think you understand intellectual property law. Trademark dilution opens with "Trademark dilution is a trademark law concept giving the owner of a famous trademark standing to forbid others from using that mark in a way that would lessen its uniqueness". I'm not convinced that there is some unique property of the Colt Manufacturing Company that they may not avail themselves of this protection.
You are saying it would be both legally and morally proper for us to have a article titled List of kleenex brands, thereby serving to materially dilute the value of Kimberly-Clark's trademark (tradmarks are considered a corporate asset and and often valued at many millions of dollars) and ushering us closer to a world were I can sell "Veeblefletzer brand kleenexes" (as I can with aspirin). Even if this is perfectly legally proper -- I remain skeptical, if Kimberly-Clark is protecting the copyright, but I'm willing to be educated on this, by a copyright lawyer -- it is wrong IMO. We are supposed to protect the reusability of our material, and "Well, it's technically legal to re-use this material, but you're screwing the Colt Corporation" falls short of what our standard ought to be, maybe. Herostratus (talk) 04:03, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
15 U.S. Code Section 1125(c)(1): "Subject to the principles of equity, the owner of a famous mark that is distinctive, inherently or through acquired distinctiveness, shall be entitled to an injunction against another person who, at any time after the owner’s mark has become famous, commences use of a mark or trade name in commerce that is likely to cause dilution by blurring or dilution by tarnishment of the famous mark, regardless of the presence or absence of actual or likely confusion, of competition, or of actual economic injury." Later in 1125(c)(3): '"The following shall not be actionable as dilution by blurring or dilution by tarnishment under this subsection:... (B) All forms of news reporting and news commentary. [and] (C) Any noncommercial use of a mark." Actual case law, as well as legal theory, takes a very dim view of litigants who have tried to use trademark law to stop people from talking about their marks, even incorrectly. At OTRS, at least when I was a regular, we would get these complaints all the time. It was treated as a non-issue, and as far as I'm aware, Wikimedia Foundation lawyers were never concerned about the possibility of being sued over it. That aside, I do think referring to every gun similar to an AR-15 as an AR-15 is a mistake. Just for the sake of avoiding ambiguity, we shouldn't do that, even if some news sources do. Someguy1221 (talk) 04:17, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
Don't put (stupid) words into my mouth. I'm capable of being stupid without your kind assistance. 1. I have not said anything about morality, one way or another. 2. I have not said anything about the legality of an article such as List of kleenex brands, except by inference - it would be a stupid article title. 3. I have said that trademark infringement requires the infringer to be trading in something or other. If you had troubled to read the second sentence of the article you pointed to, and, indeed, the rest of the article, you would have found much to support the view that dilution occurs as a result of some sort of trading activity, not mere use of a term in a way that displeases the trademark owner. You confuse dilution with genericisation. They are distinct things. Trademarks protect the use of the protected term in matters of trade. The clue is in the name. Trademarks do not protect the term absent trade. "but I'm willing to be educated on this, by a copyright lawyer", you say (even though we were discussing trademarks ... easy mistake to make). Here's one: Simon, Ilanah (Summer 2006). "The Actual Dilution Requirement in the United States, United Kingdom and European Union: A Comparative Analysis" (PDF). Journal of Science & Technology Law. 12 (2). Come back when you've waded through that. --Tagishsimon (talk) 04:36, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
Regarding the statement, "...referring to every gun similar to an AR-15 as an AR-15 is a mistake. Just for the sake of avoiding ambiguity, we shouldn't do that, even if some news sources do". In fact, not only news sources but firearms experts refer to this class of weapons as "AR-15s".[1][2][3][4][5][6] In many cases they mention "Colt" rarely if at all. It is the common term. Some news sources and others refer to "AR-15-style" firearms, or similar equivocations, but they are a minority.
As for enforcement by Colt, it appears to be nonexistent. Many manufacturers and retailers refer to their non-Colt products as "AR-15s", for example, Stag Arms: "Browse our selection of AR15 Rifles.", or this retailer: "Buy a fully-assembled AR-15 at Primary Arms and choose from brands like Radical Firearms, Daniel Defense, Spikes Tactical, and more." And more: [7][8][9] I can't speak to the theoretical legal issues, but in practice this seems to be a non-issue.
The reason this matters is that numerous sources make statements about "AR-15s", saying things like, "The AR-15 is the most popular rifle in America." A title we're using now on Wikipedia, AR-15 variants, has two problems: first, "variants" implies a subset of weapons derived from the original AR-15, rather than an overview of the entire class, and second, no source uses that term. As it stands now, there is no article where we can summarize what reliable sourcs say about this class of mostly interchangeable firearms. Felsic2 (talk) 16:51, 18 November 2016 (UTC)
OK, OK, I stand corrected! Everyone seems to agree that as long as we are not abrogating the trademark by distributing a firearm called the "WikiMedia AR-15" we are free to use the term however we like. It follows from that that we are free to rename the article Facial tissue to Kleenex (after clearing the way by moving the current Kleenex to Kleenex (brand)) -- very similar circumstances, I'd have to think. (Whether we should do that depends on analyzing the data and how to best apply WP:COMMONNAME to take readers where most expect to go. But quite possibly. But that question doesn't apply to AR-15s, though -- most people associate "AR-15" with the type, I am informed.) So I learned something today. Back to the RM then and thanks to all who corresponded. Herostratus (talk) 21:01, 20 November 2016 (UTC)

'Fuck Trump' Redirect page to protest signs paragraph

Hi, I'm currently disputing a speedy deletion of a redirect from 'Fuck Trump' to Donald_Trump_presidential_campaign,_2016#Protests because it's common on protest signage, and noted in the paragraph it's redirected to. If I am in error, I don't understand how a redirect that points to an expression on common signage is a personal attack? Victor Grigas (talk) 01:25, 21 November 2016 (UTC)

If you don't understand how it is a personal attack, I'm not sure anyone can explain it to you. Herostratus (talk) 01:33, 21 November 2016 (UTC)
Isn't the point of a redirect to CORRECT a query?Victor Grigas (talk) 01:40, 21 November 2016 (UTC)
There's another page that I can't find where there is a discussion about these types of redirects, but I can't find it immediately, but the consensus there is that if the phrase is determined to be one that is likely a search term, even if the phrase is demeaning to a BLP, a redirect to where the phrase is discussed in the parent article is reasonable. That said, this phase does not appear to have that type of notability/importance, its just a repeated phrase on several signs, and has no meaning beyond that vugarity and thus we should not have that redirect. --MASEM (t) 01:53, 21 November 2016 (UTC)
Thank you for the clarification! I'd love to see the discussion if you can find it. I did have two sources that referenced the signage in the talk page link above (Vice news, Colorado Independent) if lends to any notability. Question - is there a threshold for notability of protest signage/verbage? This one comes to mind as a notable one: The whole world is watchingVictor Grigas (talk) 02:11, 21 November 2016 (UTC)
There is a list of stupic redirects at ANI. If I were Jimbo, anyone arguing to keep these time-wasters would, after a warning, be indeffed. It's obviously a case of not understanding the purpose of an encyclopedia, or wanting to exploit Wikipedia to make some kind of point. The political advocacy redirects should be deleted. On the specific issue in this thread, any reader hoping to find encyclopedic information when searching for "Fuck Trump" is beyond help. Johnuniq (talk) 02:06, 21 November 2016 (UTC)
At this point from the news stories, yes, I agree that the phrase has no intrinsic special meaning that we would include a redirect for it, and I can't think of any other current existing case where a protest sign phrase is beyond just being a "hateful" phrase, but I would not dismiss the possibly that a hateful phrase used across many protest signs surpasses the WP:NEO test and almost itself becomes notable that a redirect, regardless of the BLP, would become appropriate. This is just not the case for it right now. --MASEM (t) 02:19, 21 November 2016 (UTC)
I appreciate the thoughtful clarification, thank you! Victor Grigas (talk) 02:28, 21 November 2016 (UTC)

Rfc on upgrading the NAC essay to a guideline

Interested editors can comment on the Deletion process talk page. Thanks. Lourdes 05:37, 21 November 2016 (UTC)

Establishments in (location) by (year) articles for times when (location) didn't exist

We probably need some clarification, policy-wise, on how to handle situations like I just found at Category:Establishments in Spain by year. See, "Spain" is not a concept which has existed forever, even historiographically speaking, the earliest one could consider a place called "Spain" would have been the 16th century. Prior to that were places like "Castile" and "Leon", etc. Likewise Category:Establishments in France by year has establishments as early as 365; there weren't even Franks in the area! The Manual of Style specifically notes we should use the name of the place at the time the event occurred, to quote "An article about Junipero Serra should say he lived in Alta Mexico not the U.S. state of California because the latter entity did not exist at the time of Junipero Serra. The Romans invaded Gaul, not France, and Thabo Mbeki was the president of the Republic of South Africa, not of the Cape Colony." I am not aware of any exception carved out for categories, so, for example, the Ancient Diocese of Toul should NOT be categorized in Category:365 establishments in France but rather in Category:365 establishments in Gaul. I'm also not quite sure where to cross-post this discussion, so if anyone has suggestions for where, or if I should move this to a better page, let me know and I will do so. This page seems to have the wider readership... --Jayron32 16:54, 19 November 2016 (UTC)

Wikipedia talk:Categories for discussion/Archive 15#RFC on yyyy in Foo is a discussion that I'm sure will provide the clarity you seek. Thincat (talk) 19:00, 22 November 2016 (UTC)

Climate Change Deniers

I noted a discussion about the removal of category of climate denier for people who reject the scientific consensus of climate change. I think it's a pretty accurate term. Is there any way to re-instate it?

I think wikipedia is less for not having the category. --Skinnytony1 (talk) 10:12, 24 November 2016 (UTC)

I agree in that the close of that CfD did not match the consensus, and the CfD was closed, and the category deleted, by an admin who was subsequently (a year later) desysopped and indefinitely blocked from Wikipedia. There were 21 !votes to retain the category as is, and only 13 !votes to delete. So it should have been closed as "keep as is" or "no consensus". Softlavender (talk) 10:43, 24 November 2016 (UTC)
This seems like a useful category, would it be possible to recover the lost category tags? However, I wonder if this discussion is in the right location as I'm not clear how it relates to policy. Is there a better location to discuss reinstating a category? DIY Editor (talk) 03:17, 25 November 2016 (UTC)
The person who closed it may be kicked out of the project, but he did give some reasons for his decision. The basic thrust was that "climate change denier" is pejorative. Per WP:BLP we are cautious about pejorative categories. If BLP is truly in play votes don't necessarily much matter. BLP trumps.
We do have pejorative categories though: Category:Serial killers for instance, although we have to be careful about who we put into these categories, which makes them more work to maintain. Is "climate change denier" pejorative? If it is, is it worthwhile having it anyway? These are two questions that would be settled by a WP:DRV. Before going there, is there a category name that could be less pejorative, I wonder? Herostratus (talk) 21:44, 25 November 2016 (UTC)
@Herostratus: perhaps "People who don't believe in Climate Change" (its a bit long). Iazyges Consermonor Opus meum 22:04, 25 November 2016 (UTC)
  • A question: is the underlying concern really about the appropriateness of the title of the category... or is it about how to appropriately populate the category? (i.e. labeling people as "deniers" who perhaps should not be labeled as such). Would the category be less controversial if it had a clearer definition? Blueboar (talk) 00:21, 26 November 2016 (UTC)
The US National Centre for Science Education has a pretty good definition of “climate change denier,” note they say that it isn't pejorative:
"Recognizing that no terminological choice is entirely unproblematic, NCSE — in common with a number of scholarly and journalistic observers of the social controversies surrounding climate change — opts to use the terms “climate changer deniers” and “climate change denial” (where “denial” encompasses unwarranted doubt as well as outright rejection). The terms are intended descriptively, not in any pejorative sense, and are used for the sake of brevity and consistency with a well-established usage in the scholarly and journalistic literature."
I'd like to see it back and don't see it as pejorative just accurate use of language....sorry to start this discussion here DIY Editor, I'm new to these parts of wikipedia. Can you suggest where to go to discuss further etc or take action... Skinnytony1 (talk) 12:24, 26 November 2016 (UTC)
The issue is that it is a BLP problem - it's a contentious label, and unless a person has self-identified themselves as a CCD (which happens but very infrequently), classifying a person into this category is against BLP. --MASEM (t) 13:27, 26 November 2016 (UTC)
So... would the category be considered appropriate if inclusion was limited to only those few who self-identify with the term? Blueboar (talk) 19:57, 26 November 2016 (UTC)
Hi, isn't the problem hidden in the word "unwarranted" in the NCSE definition? Categorizing someone as a CCD involves the judgement that their divergence from consensus is indeed unwarranted. It is, if nothing else, logically possible that divergent hypotheses may contain elements that are true, and thus the divergence is to the same digree not unwarranted. IOW, CCDs in the NCSE sense is merely a subset of people who have divergent views; which might perhaps have its own name, like "Divergent Views", "Non-Consensus Views", or whatever is appropriate (a category which might actually be empty, too). As soon as the judegement that some persons divergence from consensus is indeed unwarranted is confirmed as correct - and I would not want to pronounce on how one goes about to ensure that, or who gets to do that (as a reliable source) or if Wikipedia should do it at all - there is IMO nothing wrong in calling people CCDs, because then the possible pejorative slur is backed by appropriate evidence that their views are e.g. unscientific or whatever. Being labeled as such is perhaps not nice, but the label would then be truthful; as in the "serial killer" example. T (talk) 16:30, 27 November 2016 (UTC)
This is not the place to discuss an old CFD. If you believe the close was inappropriate or that circumstances have changed, then you should put in a request at WP:DELREV. —Farix (t | c) 21:06, 29 November 2016 (UTC)

Requested edit filter No emoji's in edit summaries

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 am opening this thread to gain consensus for an edit filter I requested "No emoji's in edit summaries". I have to admit I'm not very good at sponsoring or formatting these types of discussions, so any help in that regards will be appreciated. It's mentioned at the filter request that this topic might require new or changed policy, hence the use of this venue. - Mlpearc (open channel) 18:24, 30 November 2016 (UTC)


  • @Mlpearc: Please clarify. The edit you used as an example at WP:EF/R was by an anonymous user. Due to significant disruption, there is already a filter disallowing the addition of emojis in wikitext by unconfirmed users, so we could just as easily check edit summaries as well. Why do we need to disallow it from all users? The point should to prevent disruption MusikAnimal talk 19:12, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
    @MusikAnimal: The All users is just due to I have no idea about the structure of filters, preventing disruption is my goal. - Mlpearc (open channel) 19:28, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
    @Mlpearc: If you just want to prevent disruption, I recommend you self-close this proposal. We can target the disruption without the controversial blanket all-user disallowing of emojis MusikAnimal talk 19:33, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
    This would be my preference - there is no need to disallow emojis across the board, only where there has been disruption -- samtar talk or stalk 19:16, 30 November 2016 (UTC)



  • While I find the idea of using emojis in edit summaries somewhat silly, this proposal needs an actual rationale - "it's silly" on its own is not a rationale for anything. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 19:18, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
@Jo-Jo Eumerus: where did I say "silly" ? I can not find it. My rational is in my filter request Seems more disruptive and unnecessary than useful or needed - Mlpearc (open channel) 19:24, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
@Mlpearc: I was referring to my own somewhat silly, sorry. I am not convinced it's disruptive enough to merit any kind of countermeasure, really. And "not needed" is never on its own a reason for anything. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 19:29, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
  • Strong oppose: emoji are legitimate means of textual communication as standardised in Unicode. No reason has been presented by the proposer other than "seems more disruptive and unnecesary than useful or needed". Your subjective opinion of what characters are useful to type is not a valid basis for policy change. You have presented no evidence that sufficient disruption is associated with emoji in edit summaries that the collateral damage of blocking such edits would be valid, and you have presented no argument that emoji in edit summaries are inherently disruptive. Hint: you can't, because, for example, my edit summary in this edit is not disruptive and describes my edit, because it makes me sad you have proposed this. Also you say edit summaries "are supposed to describe an edit not how you feel, that's what talk pages are for": edits on talk pages can involve expressing feelings, so that is a potential use case for emoji according to your own standard. Why do you want to ban something that does no harm and might bring a little bit of harmless fun? BethNaught (talk) 19:22, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
@BethNaught: I agree, as I said earlier, Just for the record, I do like emoji's and use them all the time, on IRC, talk page discussions and texting, I do have issues when used in edit summaries (which are supposed to describe an edit not how you feel, that's what talk pages are for) and I don't like them in usernames either, but I'll bite my tongue on that for now. - Mlpearc (open channel) 19:30, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
With what do you agree? It is your vagueness that has caused this fuss. If you want to ban emoji only in certain circumstances, amend your proposal now with specific circumstances for a ban and evidence why it is necessary. So far you have not done either. BethNaught (talk) 19:35, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
@BethNaught: "emoji are legitimate means of textual communication as standardised in Unicode" - Mlpearc (open channel) 19:42, 30 November 2016 (UTC)

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

RFC on lists being promoted as GAs

Interested editors may comment on the GA nominations talk page. Thanks. Lourdes 08:35, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

Proposed activity requirements for maintaining bot flags

Please see Wikipedia_talk:Bot_policy#Activity_requirements for a proposed amendment to the bot policy. — xaosflux Talk 19:20, 3 December 2016 (UTC)

What happens in this scenario (re: drafts)

  1. User 1 creates a draft of an article and does not move it into articlespace. Using the example that spurred on this post, let's say it's a stub of a newly notable subject kept in draftspace until more than two sources could be found, because it did not meet User 1's standards.
  2. The next day, User 2 creates a very similar stub, also with two sources (sharing one in common with the draft), in article space. It's hard to say one is much better or worse than the other, but the second was clearly not the product of copying, despite sharing some content. (i.e. it was almost certainly matter of User 2 simply not noticing the draft).

If nobody edited the draft following its creation, a history merge, as I understand it, would be feasible. But what if that's not the case?

It seems like the entire idea of using the draft space is made problematic if they can simply be ignored by someone who sees the available sourcing as sufficient for mainspace. On the other hand, does it really make sense to "penalize" User 2 for not noticing the draft (they're easy to miss if you don't search for them, after all).

The example that led me here is Draft:Ram Point and Ram Point. I disclose these self-consciously, because the whole idea of "credit" for articles is obviously fraught, and that draft is not proud work (after all, it's there because I didn't think it was good enough). The reason I'm pursuing the matter is because what if it weren't a lousy stub -- what if it were a more substantial article I wanted to work on in draftspace for a while before moving it -- but then meanwhile someone else created nearly the same thing? We encourage new users to work in drafts/sandboxes all the time. Students in particular regularly use drafts to collaborate over a period of weeks prior to moving into the mainspace. Also just a matter of principle, because I like the draft space and want people to use it more, but if people don't take into account that notification that appears when they're about to create a page for which a draft exists, then who would want to use it? — Rhododendrites talk \\ 18:05, 3 December 2016 (UTC)

  • Here is how I would handle it... User 1 should continue to work on "his" draft (in User Space), ignoring the fact that there is an active stub article for now... then, when he feels that "his" draft is "up to snuff", simply merge it into the existing stub. To put it another way... think of user 1's version as if it were a "re-write" that is still in draft form. When the "re-write" is ready, merge it into the existing stub. Blueboar (talk) 19:51, 3 December 2016 (UTC)
and... if User 1 seeks collaboration on the draft "re-write"... leave a note with a link pointing to the draft on the stub's talk page. Blueboar (talk) 20:00, 3 December 2016 (UTC)
@Blueboar: Thanks. This is sort of beside the original point I was looking for clarification on, though. "Credit", as I said, is thorny, and I'm not particularly thrilled about this being the one I put forward for discussion, but the implications of this not being hashed out properly seem significant. Wikipedians take some sense of satisfaction/value in having made a contribution like a creating an article, taking an article to GA/FA, having an article in DYK/ITN, etc. As there's obviously no public-facing sense of "credit", they're ways we informally nod to a sense of "credit" behind the scenes. In part for that reason, when we have two articles in article space about the same subject -- at least as I understand it -- the one which was created second is merged into the one created first. So I guess the more succinct way to ask this question is what happens when the first article was in the draft namespace? If, despite the notice of a draft (assuming the same article title), someone creates an article anyway, is the original then turned into possible merge material (or not even, if, as in this case, the content is largely the same) as though it were the second article created in mainspace? — Rhododendrites talk \\ 15:37, 4 December 2016 (UTC)
Personally, I don't care about "credit"... sure, only one editor can "take credit" for creating the stub... but that isn't worth much. I give far more credit to those who build on that stub and improve the article so it is no longer just a stub. It's the end product that matters, not the starting point. So... let the other guy have "credit" for the initial creation... you can take credit for the far more meaningful re-write and improvement. Blueboar (talk) 20:55, 4 December 2016 (UTC)
This is well and good, but I'm looking for the policy/guideline/precedent for a given scenario rather than advice (fine as the advice may be). Perhaps there is none, in which case I would like to at least see that there is no answer written down somewhere to make it less of an open question. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 23:13, 4 December 2016 (UTC)
Oh... OK. Sorry to misunderstand what you were asking. As far as I know, there is no policy or guideline that covers what you are talking about. Blueboar (talk) 00:21, 5 December 2016 (UTC)
Whoever's working on the Wikipedia:Four Award these days might have some insight into your question. WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:07, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
@Whatamidoing: Out of curiosity, why? The premise here is a stub (representative of an article of any given quality), and what to do at the point of realizing a duplicate article was created. Maybe I'm misreading what the Four Award is all about? — Rhododendrites talk \\ 01:21, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
Over the years, the Four Award has had occasion to discuss who "really" created an article, and specifically in the context of "taking credit" (although that's not your personal main goal). They are therefore likely to be familiar with the issues and the typical arguments for and against considering any particular version to be "first". WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:16, 6 December 2016 (UTC)

Let me extract a rewording from the thread above, since I think I may have been unclear:

  • If two articles exist on the same subject, the typical preference is to retain the older version and merge/redirect (or occasionally delete) the one created second. There are exceptions, but that's what's typical. My question is: what happens when the article that was created first is in the drafts namespace?
  • Does a draft inherently forfeit the right to be the merge target rather than the merge source, regardless of when it was created or the extent of its content?Rhododendrites talk \\ 01:21, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
    • Draft space exists as a place to start articles. A person seeking to start a new article on a subject that could reasonably be expected to have an existing draft should check to see whether there is a draft first. Of course, when you start a draft at a title where an article already exists, you get a warning that the article exists. This should work both ways. bd2412 T 01:28, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
      • @BD2412: So if there is an existing draft at that title (and thus a warning is displayed), but a second article is created anyway, what are the next steps? Is your response different if it's at a different title (and thus no warning)? — Rhododendrites talk \\ 02:14, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
  • There is related history.  I was working on an incubated draft, and someone created a version of the article in mainspace, which was in turn nominated for deletion.  The closer not only closed as delete, he decided to also delete the draft.  Unscintillating (talk) 02:58, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
  • "This should work both ways. bd2412 T 01:28, 6 December 2016 (UTC)" Yes. When starting a page in mainspace, you should be warned that there is a page similarly titled and draftspace. And vice versa. And "similar", not exact. Indeed, when starting a page in either place, a Wikipedia search (all namespaces) should be done. Otherwise, the creation of DraftSpace was an exercise begging for a huge amount of content forking. --SmokeyJoe (talk) 03:29, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
    • This is along the lines of what I figured, but I don't see a concrete place to point or clear recommendation for steps to follow. I imagine anyone simply tagging the duplicate as such (csd) or otherwise deleting it to make way to move in the original would receive more than a little flak for doing so... — Rhododendrites talk \\ 04:32, 6 December 2016 (UTC)

Is fixing subsection redirects improperly worse than not doing it at all?

(Note; originally posted here, then I realised it was more suited to the Village Pump. Also, this is now less about the editor in question, and more about the general matter of principle and policy.)

In this edit a redirect-to-subsection is converted to a piped subsection redirect. Our guidelines on this state we should prefer the redirect for reasons of maintainability amongst others, so normally it'd be considered counter productive.

However, in this case, the redirect's subsection anchor link (but not the link to the parent article) was broken beforehand, so it could be argued that- on an immediate and purely local level, this was an improvement. On the other hand, fixing things in this way in general is bad overall because it decreases maintainability and negates the reason it was linked via a redirect in the first place.

Clearly, the best solution would be to fix the redirect instead, or to encourage the editor to do things that way.... that isn't in question.

The issue is:- Should editors be discouraged- and even prohibited- from "fixes" like the one above, even if the alternative is that the slightly faulty redirect remains in place instead?

Ubcule (talk) 19:47, 5 December 2016 (UTC)

If the problem is with the redirect, then the redirect should be fixed, as there are probably >1 incoming links to the redirect and one edit fixes them all instead of having to make edits to a lot of articles. In this case the redirect has but 4 links, but it still saves time. As for whether it should be allowed, I think context goes a long way. If it's just some editor happening upon a page and fixing a broken link, I think it's fine and within the spirit if not the letter of the law. On the other hand, if someone is going around doing these en masse (as it is in your case), whether automated or not, I think it should be discouraged from continuing, but I don't know if the edits should be reverted—they're not necessarily harmful. Pinguinn 🐧 21:32, 5 December 2016 (UTC)
IMO broken links should not be kept. We should not let the perfect be the enemy of the good. It is desirable to have things working, even if the fix isn't complete.
If someone's doing this systematically, it might be helpful to point out an even better way to do this (as I once did, years ago, to someone who was systematically replacing project-space shortcuts with spelled-out names: it's more helpful to spell out "WP:NPOV" than "WP:DUE"). But it's also worth noting relevant limitations: the edit in question was made on the mobile site, and redirects do not seem to be so visible there. WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:18, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for the feedback.
@WhatamIdoing:; I'm aware that perfection is not required, and have a similar rule of thumb personally- if something is left better than it was before, good; if worse, bad. The problem here is deciding whether on balance edits such as those described are a positive rather than negative thing!
I disagree that such edits aren't harmful on the large scale; I'd say it was on the large scale that the negative aspects became more obvious. While they look good on an immediate level, they reduce maintainability, decreasing the chance such links will be fixed if they break again in the future, and increase the amount of work for future editors; they ultimately undo structures that we've agreed are preferable and beneficial. Ubcule (talk) 19:23, 6 December 2016 (UTC)


If I am correct, then WP:GNG and WP:BASIC are the first pillar of notability.

Unfortunately many schools, colleges and universities are kept in WP:AFD with the excuse WP:SCHOOLOUTCOMES. Some schools and universities established less than a year ago. They don't have any third party independent reviews. They fail every criteria of (WP:GNG) WP:BASIC.

Whereas some sportsperson who has got media coverage in major newspapers and the articles published discuss the person as a heading (not a passing mention in one line), but editors vote delete as they don't pass individual criteria of Wikipedia:Notability (sports). Some of them are junior level players who participate in world championships. Even if they pass WP:GNG, but fail the community set criteria of those particular sports. --Marvellous Spider-Man 04:10, 1 December 2016 (UTC) .

WP:BASIC applies to people, not institutions. If you have come here to argue against schools, without bothering to understand the policies you cite, you're on even more of a hiding to nothing than you were already on. You disagree with school article retention? Fine. Others do not. They'll not be convinced by you here, I think, so at best you're tilting at windmills. --Tagishsimon (talk) 04:20, 1 December 2016 (UTC)
Corrected. Marvellous Spider-Man 04:42, 1 December 2016 (UTC)
Regarding the sports-specific notability guidelines, they do not supplant the general notability guideline. If someone meets the general notability guideline, then the standard for inclusion in Wikipedia is met, regardless of the sports-related guidelines. This is discussed in the first paragraph of Wikipedia:Notability (sports), in bold, the second paragraph of the section "Applicable policies and guidelines", as well as the frequently asked questions list. isaacl (talk) 04:25, 1 December 2016 (UTC)
I know, but some editors vote delete, even if they pass WP:GNG. Marvellous Spider-Man 04:42, 1 December 2016 (UTC)
I think you'll find it's a bit more complicated than that. A subject can pass the criteria of some SNGs and still fail NOT, which requires (without exception even for things like "competed in the 1912 Olympics" or "is claimed by his employer to be a world-famous academic") that "All article topics must be verifiable with independent, third-party sources".
If you find a government-run school that truly cannot be verified with independent source (suggestion: find the name of the local newspaper and search for its coverage directly), then you should consider nominating it for {{db-hoax}}. Despite hundreds, or perhaps thousands, of deletion attempts on schools over the last decade, I don't believe that we've ever seen a typical, government-run school that doesn't meet the GNG when editors search properly. WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:02, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
@WhatamIdoing: I think I was not able to explain what I was asking the Wikipedians to reconsider. My main suggestion was to keep sportsperson articles who pass WP:GNG. I don't have much problems with school articles being kept. I mentioned schooloutcomes to compare with AFDs of sportspersons passing WP:GNG but failing WP:NSPORTS. Marvellous Spider-Man 01:17, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
The main benefit of some SNGs is to limit simplistic interpretations of the GNG. Under GNG, you can make an argument (which might or might not be convincing) that any two articles about any subject in any neighborhood newspaper means that you deserve a Wikipedia article. If you follow that approach, then you'll be writing articles about several high school athletes per school each year, every coach, most businesses and professionals in small towns (e.g., most dentists), and certainly every politician, most upper-level civil servants (e.g., every police chief), and every government-owned building. In fact, by that minimal standard, I think I could write four or five separate articles about what didn't get built on a particular piece of empty land in my city during the last two decades, plus three articles about what used to be there.
And that's not what we want. Merely meeting the minimum standard (complying with one SNG+NOT or complying with GNG+NOT) is not the end of the discussion. Editors need to consider not only the most appropriate guideline to apply, but also whether meeting the minimum is enough. In the case of athletes and businesses, editors run to the conservative side. Merely meeting the minimum isn't enough, and athletes should be merged up to relevant teams, locations, or other, broader articles. WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:30, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
The long-held consensus in discussions on the sports-specific notability guidelines is they do not create a higher bar above the general notability guideline. They only provide a respite from immediate deletion, to allow for time to locate appropriate sources establishing that the criteria for inclusion in Wikipedia are met. Routine coverage of sporting events is not considered to meet the needs of the general notability guideline. isaacl (talk) 05:40, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
I'm familiar with that story. But I think the reality is that some of those criteria actually do create a higher bar. For example, NSPORTS excludes routine coverage (as does WP:CORP, which goes even further to specify that a local business can't be notable if it is only covered by its local neighborhood newspaper), but the GNG does not have such exclusions.
IMO this "higher bar" is a good thing. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:36, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
Yes, the sports-specific notability guidelines and the FAQ discuss this scenario as well. I was only addressing the question of editors solely using the sports-specific notability guidelines, excluding consideration of the general notability guideline. isaacl (talk) 05:40, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
Editors at AFD must use their best judgment to determine which of the guidelines is most applicable. WhatamIdoing (talk) 00:38, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
Historically, passing the topic-specific guidelines are taken as presumed notability. There's usually a strong reason to believe that with infinite time, effort, and access to find sources, subjects meeting the topic-specific guidelines would be found to meet GNG. For instance, sports-related sources are notoriously susceptible to decay. It's fairly rare to be able to find much information online about specific NFL players (outside of the most well-known) going back more than a year, for instance. The various journalism sources quickly change their links and make old content inaccessible. It stops showing up in search results. If we had a time machine or access to printed copies of old sources, we could definitely show notability, but we have the topic-specific guideline to make it less burdensome to demonstrate notability for players that we know, based on their professional activities, are highly likely to satisfy GNG. ~ Rob13Talk 00:52, 7 December 2016 (UTC)

Afd process

Issue: There seems to be a wide variation in how the Afd process works. It seems, the only guidelines that are evaluated are the ones that individuals bring up in the discussion. And, the outcome of the discussion is based upon the input from users, some of whom understand the guidelines and others do not. In addition, the decision-making process is sometimes focused on waiting until there is consensus versus weighing the extent to which the applicable guidelines are correctly assessed.

For example, articles like Alana Lee, where the person is notable only because she won a Miss Nevada contest and only has a few sources is "kept". On the other hand, there are articles like Debra Ruh, where there are numerous secondary sources that has become a protracted discussion. (As an FYI, I worked on Ruh after it was nominated. It's just an example of a case where the subject did not appear to be notable, but may be viable upon further work/review)

Proposal: Using a checklist, similar in concept to the {{DYK checklist}}, and based upon the criteria from deletion reason guideline, will help ensure a thorough evaluation of the guidelines for decision-making.

I have drafted a proposed checklist and it would be great to get your input about this or other solutions that would help make the process more effective and balanced.--CaroleHenson (talk) 18:02, 7 December 2016 (UTC)

AfD is not DYK. When DYK gets it wrong its egg all over our faces on the frontpage. If AfD gets it wrong its fixable. Also there are a number of conflicting policies and the discussion leads to a balance between those policies. Also the discussions at AfD codify what will become policy, or will show unworkable policy to be such. As such I am very uneasy about such a process. Agathoclea (talk) 18:52, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
It may be that AfDs are fixable, but it seems once an article is deleted, it's hard to get past a previous decision to delete. In fact, it's one of the reasons an article can be deleted, right? It doesn't help that there seem to be people who make arbitrary assertions or claims based upon personal bias - and that seems to get equal weight as the ones where people have done an evaluation and make legitimate and thoughtful interpretations of the guidelines.
And, there are cases where beauty contestants with no other notability, for instance, because I've seen a lot of them lately, get renominated but they aren't getting discussed by people that understand the guidelines or have barely get a whisper in terms of feedback. Because of that they stay, even if they've been nominated several times. And, there seems to be a theory that if an article has been on WP for a while, that means it should stay. It seems that it's fixable in theory, but not always in practice.
It's egg on our faces, not on a front page, but by readers who see a lot of very poor articles of non-notable people, which then is an encouragement for other articles of non-notable people. And the fact that we don't have consistent or any where close to thorough review of the deletion criteria, means we're failing. And, probably the biggest issue is that there is such a large backlog, and there are not enough editors to patrol the articles.
Do you have an idea about how to make the process more effective?--CaroleHenson (talk) 19:51, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
I disagree. Frontpage stuff gets shoved into everybodies face. Borderline notability articles do not. One has to be bored (random search) or looking for something specific. If the person finds the article on the subject he is looking for even if I could not care twohoots about beauty contestants then he is a winner. I am not saying we should keep everything - what I do say we should not take away the possibility to evaluate an article from different angles replacing it with a checkboxstyle trafficwarden approach. The process as a whole works - the obvious cases get thrown out with the speedy nominations, the rest should have their day in court. Agathoclea (talk) 21:10, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
Hmmm. I think your point: "If the person finds the article on the subject he is looking for even if I could not care twohoots about beauty contestants then he is a winner" is an interesting one to paraphrase for the borderline cases.
I don't think it hurts to mention the guidelines for deletion per WP:DEL-REASON - and the extent to which the article might pass or fail as an article based upon those points. Perhaps there is an informal way that I can show that I've evaluated the guidelines when I make a posting - and see how that goes, like:
  • <Meets / doesn't meet> _________ of the CSD criteria
  • Article sources are __(RS/SS, exclusively primary, unreliable, nonexistent, etc.)___ and am <able/unable> to find sufficient reliable, secondary sources
  • Find that it is <notable/not notable> according to WP:GNG and _____ because _______
Those seem to be the key issues that come up.--CaroleHenson (talk) 22:55, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
  • No, no, 1000 times no. The AFD process should work like this. 1) someone suggests we delete something. 2) A bunch of people comment with reasons why or why not they think we should or should not delete it. 3) Someone assesses the consensus and acts on it. That's IT. We should never make such judgements based on artificial "checklists" or anything like that. We discuss, we give rationales, we try to convince other's we're right by appealing to reason and sense. THAT is how we should always do it. There's WAY too many variables to short circuit that in any way with checklists. --Jayron32 00:46, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
  • I'm not sure how WP:DEL-REASON is an artificial checklist - but I'm hearing the concerns about using a checklist.--CaroleHenson (talk) 01:24, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
The final reason listed there is Any other content not suitable for an encyclopedia, which is pretty much any material we reach a consensus to not include (and overlaps most other deletion reasons). Making that list a formal requirement doesn't actually accomplish anything, other than encouraging nominators to tack on that catch all to nominations just in case someone wants to be bureaucratic about it. Monty845 04:26, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
Good point.--CaroleHenson (talk) 23:36, 9 December 2016 (UTC)

Proposal to change some aspects of WP:ENT

Currently, guideline 1 is very vague. It goes, "[When an actor] has had significant roles in multiple notable films, television shows, stage performances, or other productions[, they are considered to be notable.] How do we define "multiple"? Some users say it's two, others argue it's (at least) three. Unless that is clearly defined, a majority of AFD discussions regarding actors will remain long winded as to what is clearly defined as "multiple" productions, rather than focusing on the actual notability of the actor. Also, how do we define when a production is considered to be notable? If a page barely has any content (such as this) on Eng wiki, is that our idea of a notable production? I believe that some clear, non-vague definitions or examples of this particular guideline must be implemented for smoother, quicker AFD discussions. If anyone could come up with a splendidly well defined definition of "multiple" and "notable" productions, that'd be great. --Sk8erPrince (talk) 04:47, 10 December 2016 (UTC)


I am in the process of working on creating a bot that cleans up some of the deprecated parameters used in {{Infobox NFL biography}}. The WP:BRFA (Wikipedia:Bots/Requests for approval/ZackBot 5) has stalled due to a debate over what constitutes a purely cosmetic change. In short, the bot seeks to replace deprecated parameters with their new counterparts:

  • {{{currentteam}}}{{{current_team}}}
  • {{{currentposition}}}{{{position}}}
  • {{{currentpositionplain}}}{{{position}}}
  • {{{currentnumber}}}{{{number}}}

My view is that this is NOT a purely cosmetic change as it seeks to clean up and improve a template. I also feel that User:Monkbot provides a clear precedent. Others, including BU Rob13 (who suggested I post here), have countered that is simply a cosmetic change and thus violates WP:COSMETICBOT. I am looking for some input from others on their interpretation of this policy. Rob13 please chime in to better explain your side of this. --Zackmann08 (Talk to me/What I been doing) 17:45, 6 December 2016 (UTC)

This is very clearly a maintenance issue and not merely a cosmetic issue. Here's the logical argument:
  1. As long as the deprecated parameters are used "in the wild", the template and its documentation must continue to support them (i.e. they are maintenance overhead).
  2. A task that simplifies future maintenance is itself a maintenance task.
  3. Replacing the deprecated parameters would simplify future maintenance.
  4. Therefore, this task is a maintenance task, and not merely cosmetic.
{{Nihiltres |talk |edits}} 19:04, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
@Nihiltres: that was so well said that I would encourage you to add it to WP:COSMETICBOT!! That does an AWESOME job of describing the difference. BU Rob13 had raised a very valid concern about it being a slippery slope but I think your 4 points really lay out a clear distinction and boundary. --Zackmann08 (Talk to me/What I been doing) 19:14, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
I wouldn't support a hard-and-fast change to COSMETICBOT, but I never have any quarrel with consensus for a specific bot task. This is a cosmetic-only task, but that is quite separate from whether it's a useful maintenance task. It can certainly be both. We should be skeptical of cosmetic-only tasks by default until it's clear that there's consensus for them, as most such tasks are entirely unnecessary. COSMETICBOT is not intended to be an absolute that cannot be overridden by community consensus, however. If the community supports this bot task, I'm perfectly fine with that. ~ Rob13Talk 21:37, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
@BU Rob13: you also make awesome points! It seems like this bot is a useful one but I like the case-by-case approach. --Zackmann08 (Talk to me/What I been doing) 22:05, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
@BU Rob13 and Zackmann08: I think we can get more precise: the task here is not cosmetic, but it is "shallow". It's undesirable for article histories or watchlists to be flooded with "shallow" changes, with "cosmetic" changes being a good example of particularly shallow changes. {{Nihiltres |talk |edits}} 00:18, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
@Nihiltres: HEY! Who you calling shallow?! Face-wink.svg No but seriously, I like that! Great description. --Zackmann08 (Talk to me/What I been doing) 00:20, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
Purely cosmetic changes are usually defined as changes that do not alter the visual output of the page. Using that definition, this is most certainly cosmetic. It's equivalent to replacing a template redirect call with the template it redirects to; It cleans up the transclusions, in a sense, but it's also unnecessary to improve the articles themselves. ~ Rob13Talk 00:47, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
I agree that it is good for a bot to remove deprecated parameters, assuming it is likely the parameters will eventually be removed even if in a few years. In addition to the list above, removal is worthwhile because editors often copy a template in an article, treating it as a model for some other article. I often clean {{convert}} templates and am guilty of many cosmetic edits that I justify to myself on the grounds set out here (although I'm not using a bot). Johnuniq (talk) 22:13, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
One consideration that I do not see addressed above: if there is consensus at the template's talk page to deprecate and remove parameters from a template, and there are many articles affected, a bot is likely to be the least disruptive tool to make the changes to affected articles, since many (most?) editors hide bot edits from their watchlists. If we decline bot tasks of this type, and editors choose to make the edits manually, more editors' watchlists will be populated with these changes, and editing errors may also be more likely. – Jonesey95 (talk) 06:39, 7 December 2016 (UTC)
My understanding, and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong here, is that the typical way to go about this is to create a script for AutoWikiBot so that when editors make substantive changes, it also makes this cosmetic change, so that it isn't what floods page histories. Perhaps it's in the BRFA, but I think AWB is the preferable solution unless there's some reason these must be removed right now (they're deprecated, not being imminently removed, correct?) or unless AWB would not be able to do this task. Wugapodes [thɔk] [ˈkan.ˌʧɻɪbz] 04:53, 10 December 2016 (UTC)

Words to watch – mention protologisms?

Comments are requested at Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Words to watch on whether it would be useful to mention "so-called 'protologisms'" in the Manual of Style section on Neologisms and new compounds – if so, why, and if not, why not? This was the subject of an earlier discussion on the same page with no clear consensus being reached. —Sangdeboeuf (talk) 09:05, 10 December 2016 (UTC)

Insufficient participation in WP:FFD

At WT:FFD#Insufficient participation in discussions?, I discussed declining or insufficient participation in WP:FFD nominations. However, the discussion went dead for one month. Therefore, I figured that this needs more attention at the VPP. One or two say that files that obviously violate rules have been deleted, despite lack of participation. Maybe I misread things. Anyway, despite being notified by bots, amount of participants is still very low. Is the layout of the page the problem, including adding a nomination? If not, why else would many people not participate? --George Ho (talk) 09:00, 4 December 2016 (UTC)

Because nobody cares? The entirety of the file namespace is maintained by a handful of people. Less than 10 at my last count and certainly less than 20 at any given time. Even though most of the copyright violations come in the form of images it simply isn't that high up on the list of things editors want to deal with. There is no quorum at FFD. It is not AFD. If there is no participation and the request is for deletion, the result is deletion. It is better to air err on the side of caution for these things anyways. --Majora (talk) 19:44, 4 December 2016 (UTC)
Do you mean "err on the side of caution", Majora? George Ho (talk) 19:50, 4 December 2016 (UTC)
I did. Silly homophones. --Majora (talk) 19:52, 4 December 2016 (UTC)
I fear that it's because those who would be interested in participating lack the understanding of image copyright necessary to do so in a constructive manner. Maybe this post itself will help draw more attention to the venue. For what it's worth, it led me to look through some of the older ones, though I only made one comment and one close.— Godsy (TALKCONT) 03:07, 11 December 2016 (UTC)

Notability of journals

WP:NJournals is being used at many AfDs as though it is WP:PAG, which it is not. It is a terrible essay in that it claims that simply being indexed and having an impact factor (no mention of what that impact factor must be) is enough to make a journal notable. Any academic reading here will know how ludicrous a standard for notability this is. Unfortunately, it seems that the gatekeepers who are married to this essay will not allow for changes to the essay and continue to insist on using it. It's causing confusion because people think it may be a guideline which it isn't.

Thus, I argue for Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Wikipedia:Notability (academic journals).

jps (talk) 20:24, 10 December 2016 (UTC)

Perhaps you would like to suggest an impact factor that would make a journal notable or not? Yes, I know this is a loaded question because it differs immensely between subjects which I see as a flaw in your previous edits that have been deleted. DrChrissy (talk) 20:34, 10 December 2016 (UTC)
The point is that notability is subject-specific. Impact factors should be high, but what constitutes a high impact factor differs from subject to subject. Surely we agree on that point. Simply having an impact factor is not evidence of notability. Nor is being included on a list that has no editorial guidance. jps (talk) 11:46, 11 December 2016 (UTC)
About 10,000 journals have been selected for inclusion in the Journal Citation Reports, out of an estimated 80,000 to 200,000 existing academic journals. Seems rather selective to me. And there's a little bit more to this discussion than WoKrKmFK3lwz8BKvaB94 indicates here (I mean, this post on my talk page, this AfD for an article that was kept just a month ago, and this attempt to modify NJournals to obtain their desired outcome in said AfD. WoKrKmFK3lwz8BKvaB94 needs to calm down and take a deep breath, me thinks. --Randykitty (talk) 08:43, 11 December 2016 (UTC)
You are an incompetent Wikipedian who does not seem to know how academics evaluate journals. What is your academic field again? At least DrChrissy makes a reasonable point which is that there is no single impact factor that confers notability because impact factors are subject specific. But claiming that just because a journal is on a list of 10,000 that makes it notable? What a terrible argument. You don't belong here. jps (talk) 11:35, 11 December 2016 (UTC)
@WoKrKmFK3lwz8BKvaB94: Please remember WP:No personal attacks, which is Wikipedia policy. Whether he is or isn’t competent, I don’t know, but please remember that competent Wikipedians follow policy. — (talk) 22:33, 11 December 2016 (UTC)
Sorry for accidental removal of the above comment...mis-clicked. DMacks (talk) 22:44, 11 December 2016 (UTC)

Possible notability guidelines for beauty pageant winners

At Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Beauty Pageants in the last section there is a discussion of possible notability guidelines for beauty pageant winners following a previous RFC that decided to try to create such. The focus seems to be on starting only with a statement about winners of sub-national contests. We need lots more imput.John Pack Lambert (talk) 16:01, 12 December 2016 (UTC)

gender guidelines?

Are there any guidelines about gender considerations & proper representation on Wikipedia articles? e.g., Are we supposed to present topics in a way that represents men and women equally (when men and women are equal components of the group/population in question)? The question arises in connection with Haredi Judaism, where a few weeks ago I encountered a set of photographs exclusively of men. In discussions of the issue, another editor has claimed that "gender ... considerations do not have any basis in Wikipedia policy and guidelines"[10], and that it's okay to have mostly men in the photographs because "men are the public face of Haredi Judaism". I'd imagine that there are gender considerations in Wikipedia policy; the closest we get that I'm aware of is MOS:IMAGERELEVANCE, "seek to depict a variety of ages, genders, and ethnicities". Is there anything else? Or is the other editor correct -- gender considerations don't have any basis in policy? Nomoskedasticity (talk) 14:30, 12 December 2016 (UTC)

Generally they do not regarding pictures. The MOS you have cited is really the only guidance on the matter, but that is applied *to the available photographs*. In some areas where gender imbalance is skewed completely to one side, this results in the available photos being similarly lopsided. Given the insular nature of the Haredi culture in general, and the more high profile role taken by the males, there is likely to always be an imbalance in the available pictures. Women and children tend to be a lot less visible, and Haredi males, like it or not, are the public face. See here for example, a BBC article that is focused on Haredi (Belz sect) females... has a picture of 3 Haredi men. Or here where in a lifestyle piece the only non-drawn depiction of people is a group shot of men. Only in death does duty end (talk) 14:47, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
(edit conflict)I don't think there're any strict guidelines; it's a matter for common sense. We don't have a quota system, but material including images should present a balanced coverage. It's not a matter of gender. If we have an article about mountains in the United States where all of the images are from Washington State, that's unbalanced and gives a false impression. If we have an article about Confederate generals where all the images are of North Carolinans, that's unbalanced and gives a false impression. And so forth.
Mostly this is just a matter of oversight or coincidence and easily remedied. Here you say have an article where an editor is saying in effect "No, the mountains in Washington State are the best, and so Mountains of the United States should contain only images taken in that state". I wouldn't worry about it too much; it's obvious nonsense, and obvious nonsense seldom prospers long here. There're various ways of fighting it, and one is publicity, so you came here so other people can take a look at it, so fine. But looking at the article, I see an image with "Haredi family" (a girl and a woman included), "The Bais Yaakov graduating class" (bunch of girls), "Tziporah Heller" (a woman), and "Women pryaing in protest against conscription of yeshiva students". So I don't see a problem. It looks fine. We're certainly not going to prescribe "X% of images in articles about populations must show a female" or whatever. Herostratus (talk) 14:58, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
It looks fine now because the article was protected before Debresser had a chance to revert the newly added pictures of women out of the article. I think we're likely to see them deleted again. I take the point about available pictures -- but there are pictures available and yet an editor continues to delete them... (And then claims that there's no policy basis for considering this aspect of representativeness.) Nomoskedasticity (talk) 15:02, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
I am that other editor, and Herstratus and Only in Death seem to agree with my common sense approach. Debresser (talk) 15:05, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
Looks like you missed the bit about "obvious nonsense". Nomoskedasticity (talk) 15:28, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
We should, in principle, strive for balance but it's not always feasible. As was pointed out, the nature of the beast, in this article, is that you will have more pictures of men than of women. Since this is a general noticeboard and not one of the article, in general, there is no policy that says pictures have to be 50/50, they should reflect the article to the best of its abilities. 🔯 Sir Joseph 🍸(talk) 15:14, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
@User:Only in death: sure, if "available photos [are] lopsided... [and] there is likely to always be an imbalance in the available pictures". That is, if we don't have the pictures. But we do. So saying "Haredi males, like it or not, are the public face" is a non sequiter, unless you are arguing that we ought to take a reactionary political position on the matter by not using these images even when we have them.
@Debresser: "men are the public face of Haredi Judaism" and therefore we ought to show mostly men in the article's images is silly.
@User:Nomoskedasticity, If you can't solve it any other way, consider opening a WP:RFC on the matter, I guess. Herostratus (talk) 15:16, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
Assuming there are pictures available then there is no real issue. Unless the pictures are of low quality or otherwise not relevant to what they are illustrating there should be no barrier to using them. My comment on 'public face' was more than there are going to be vastly more available photos of men than women in this particular instance, not that merely being more numerous should mean they are actively proportioned in the article that way. However we should bear in mind that some Haredi sects have an active position on pictures of women in media, which means photos of them may have BLP concerns. Only in death does duty end (talk) 15:26, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
The "proportional" suggestion is what we're getting... Nomoskedasticity (talk) 15:28, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
The only time 'proportional' should be a relevant argument is where the proportion is actually relevant. (I am assuming the Haredi population split is fairly even due to lack of any birth control and encouragement to have large families.) Only in death does duty end (talk) 15:33, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
Right. We don't need need exactly 50/50. 0/100 is not good. Somewhere in the fair middle there is what we want. So yes we all seem to be in agreement, and the article looks fine now, and any attempt to alter it on political grounds ought to quashed. Regarding "However we should bear in mind that some Haredi sects have an active position on pictures of women in media, which means photos of them may have BLP concerns" I don't think we need to worry about that; doing so would render us hostage to any reactionary sect.
Generally: we are not supposed to present the "public face" desired by any entity, whether it is Haredi Judaism, the Social Democrat party, the State of Texas, the Church of Scientology, or any other entity. Rather, we are supposed to strive to present an accurate picture of the entity. This includes pictoral representations of the demographics of the entity, I would say. Herostratus (talk) 15:40, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
Yes; what I meant was that we were getting the argument that because there are more pictures available of men, we should have a higher proportion of pictures of men on our article. In any event: I'm not after 50/50, but the article was in a dire state before more pictures of women were added. Nomoskedasticity (talk) 15:48, 12 December 2016 (UTC
It is merely a matter of logic: if men are the face of the Haredi community, then as a result there will not only be more pictures but, more importantly, more noteworthy activities with men. The representation in pictures is simply a result of that. What is silly about that logic? Debresser (talk) 15:51, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
It presents a biased view of the subject. If the topic was 'Haredi Football' you would understandably expect it to be heavily male-centric. But the topic is the Haredi as a people, which is 50/50. The relevant guidance is the previously linked IMAGERELEVANCE, which indicates a broad spectrum should be covered. If the article covers specific events or aspects then depending on what they are, understandably those specific sections may be weighted one way or the other but overall I would still expect the distribution to be fairly even. I would expect an article on a social group to include pictures covering broadly all members of that group. Only in death does duty end (talk) 15:58, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
Wrong. Wikipedia as an encyclopedia covers noteworthy people and activities. Those will be mostly men in the case of Haredi people. Just like an article about Nobel price winners will give more attention to Jews than an article about the general world population, for the simple reason that there are more of them, relatively speaking. Debresser (talk) 22:25, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
If your argument is seriously only notable people in a community of people should be included in pictures in that communities article, I think you have bigger problems. Only in death does duty end (talk) 22:44, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
  • If this discussion is going to focus on one article, then it might seem to be a form of forum shopping. I suggest this topic be closed since the answer to the original question has been answered. 🔯 Sir Joseph 🍸(talk) 15:52, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
No, there are more general implications here. Nomoskedasticity (talk) 15:53, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
There are indeed general implications to the specific discussion. That doesn't deny the fact that it was not nice of you not to notify other participants in the discussion that you were opening this discussion, so I for one agree with Sir Joseph that this is a case of forum shopping. Debresser (talk) 22:29, 12 December 2016 (UTC)

...So, is there really any potential downside to proposing language saying that WP should have a form of WP:DUE weight with regard to diversity? ...Obviously within the bounds of RS, but with the expectation that, as an approximation of reality, RS should generally paint a picture of a diverse world, and so if WP does not, it may likely be a problem of editor decision making in relative emphasis. TimothyJosephWood 16:03, 12 December 2016 (UTC)

What does this mean for historical articles from a time when gender was not given due weight in reliable sources? Do we provide coverage of women more weight than the sources did? Do we intentionally omit information from reliable sources focusing on male subjects because its inclusion would downplay the roles of women? Do we omit the only freely available image because it doesn't include any diversity? Do we give female subjects a little more leeway when it comes to GNG? Correcting gender bias is difficult, and there are a lot of potential downsides to this method of actually writing a commitment to correct gender bias into our guidelines. I tend to favor the softer approach of actively encouraging editors to focus on writing about notable women, but it's also questionable whether that strategy works well enough. ~ Rob13Talk 16:16, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
Seems too easy to say that diversity in coverage of topics on WP should be representative of diversity in coverage in reliable sources. It's not as if there is another option. If it's not in the source, there's nothing to write about. However, if it is in the sources, and we don't reflect that, then we are wrong. TimothyJosephWood 16:50, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
@BU Rob13 I think that strategy goes contrary to Wikipedia's policies. It is not that I mind it much, when it is done with a soft hand, not like in this case, but it is still against our policies. Debresser (talk) 22:27, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
"against our policies" -- orrrilllly? Which policies is that? Nomoskedasticity (talk) 11:05, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
My two cents: Content means text and images. Use balance and common sense. Case by case. Edit. If there's a dispute, take it to talk and compromise. Easy. Anna Frodesiak (talk) 23:46, 12 December 2016 (UTC)

Initial disclaimer: I am involved in this discussion on the talk page. This is an understandably prickly subject. Diversity is important—doubly so when the article is about a religious sect that values modesty in women. Unfortunately, as Sir Joseph noted in his comments, the fact that Haredi Judaism values women's modesty has resulted in a dearth of images of Haredi women that are both quality and relevant. Consequently, the use of photos of women for diversity's sake alone looks hodgepodge and out of place in the article. A couple of the images are tacked onto spots where they don't seemingly fit the context of the surrounding text or section headings. It's unfortunate and incredibly frustrating for me personally, but I think that, failing a reorganization of the contents of the articleactually not a bad idea..., the re-positioning or removal of these images is due.

Regarding the general question posed to the Village Pump regarding gender guidelines, I think it's useful to highlight Haredi Judaism as a case study. The unique circumstances imposed by the subject matter in this article are why I think a hypothetical guideline on inclusivity by gender is doomed to fail or worsen the encyclopedia. Can we depend on people to use common sense on topics that demand an exception to the guideline? Or will we see people strong-arming diversity at all costs[1] even when it deteriorates the quality of an article? I don't know, but I'm unwilling to find out. I think the guidance in MOS:IMAGERELEVANCE is appropriately broad, and I WP:Avoid instruction creep as a general matter of course. AlexEng(TALK) 02:41, 13 December 2016 (UTC)

Why is the copyright license described in two different ways?

Recently there was a discussion on meta at meta:Terms of use/Creative Commons 4.0 about updating the Wikimedia Foundation Terms of Use for Wikimedia projects to use the updated version of the Creative Commons license, 4.0 instead of 3.0 as currently used.

While reading up on that I noticed that English Wikipedia uses two different descriptions of the copyright license. Anyone contributing to Wikipedia has to "irrevocably agree to release your contribution under the CC BY-SA 3.0 License and the GFDL". To see this text, go to any place on Wikipedia, click edit or edit source at the top of the screen, then scroll to the bottom above the "save" button. There actually are two text editors - one with source code and one that is WYSIWYG, but both of them prominently feature this text.

The second place is at the bottom of every Wikipedia article. This is much more prominent, because whereas the other place is seen by editors, this place is seen by everyone. Scroll to the bottom of any Wikipedia article and see where it says, "Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply."

I find it surprising that there is one sort of text to which editors agree when they make submissions, but another text is presented on all pages for readers. Presumably since everything readers access went through the submission process, the two places should have matching text. However, the reader space only notes the CC license, whereas the submission space requires agreement to dual licensing. I do not know how or why these texts came to be different.

Wikipedia has used the dual licensing system of "Creative Commons plus GNU Free Documentation License" for a long time and I wonder how it came to be that the GFDL license is not presented to Wikipedia readers, whereas the CC license is. Does anyone have any insight on how this came to be? This might be a bigger issue than English Wikipedia but I thought I would ask here first. Thanks. Blue Rasberry (talk) 19:53, 22 November 2016 (UTC)

Everything on Wikipedia is available under CC-BY-SA, but not all of it is available under the GFDL. If you want to add some text copied from elsewhere which is available under CC-BY-SA but not under the GFDL then that is absolutely fine, as long as you mark it as such. You can't add GFDL-only material unless it was added to Wikipedia prior to the introduction of CC-BY-SA. CC-BY-SA is definitely our preferred licence and is more suitable for our type of content, I expect that's why it's the only one shown to readers. GFDL is essentially there for historical reasons. Hut 8.5 11:03, 24 November 2016 (UTC)
Hut 8.5 Thanks for replying. I have the impression that what you just said is what many regular Wikipedia contributors believe, and that most people would be surprised if that were not the case.
But can you please look again, and please confirm whether what you just wrote is really accurate? You just wrote, "Everything on Wikipedia is available under CC-BY-SA, but not all of it is available under the GFDL." Can you comment on how that reconciles with the agreement above the "save" button, which says, "By saving changes, you agree to the Terms of Use, and you irrevocably agree to release your contribution under the CC BY-SA 3.0 License and the GFDL"? I have never seen anyone contest the GFDL release for the save button, and I am not even sure that is possible. What reason do you have to believe that less than 100% of current Wikipedia contributions are not dual licensed with GFDL and CC-By? It seems to me that all user-submitted content, at least since the 2009 dual-licensing scheme, has been GFDL licensed along with CC, which makes it a present concern and not something historical.
Again - I will confirm that there is a popular understanding in circulation that matches what you just described. I feel so unsure about things that I am seeking other perspectives. I am not surprised that you said what you said, but I wonder if that perspective is a correct one and if so, how that can be considering that I do not see a path into Wikipedia except with a GFDL license. Thanks for any further comment you can give. Blue Rasberry (talk) 18:44, 28 November 2016 (UTC)
The factor you're overlooking is that the text above the save button only applies to text you wrote (or otherwise hold the rights to). If you copy text from somewhere which was written by someone else and which is only available under CC-BY-SA then you can't make it available under the GFDL by clicking the Save Changes button because you don't own the rights to it in the first place. Doing this is perfectly acceptable as long as you clearly mark the text. Hut 8.5 19:30, 28 November 2016 (UTC)
Hut 8.5 I know that this is done, but it is done rarely, and I still do not see how that practice is reconciled with the submission requirement that "you irrevocably agree to release your contribution under the CC BY-SA 3.0 License and the GFDL". I am not aware of discussion about why there should be a different requirement for when someone posts their own content versus when they post someone else's. (still strange, but at meta:Licensing_update/Questions_and_Answers#Replacing_GFDL_with_CC-BY-SA.3F it says, "with the exception of CC-BY-SA-only additions from external sources". As Hut 8.5 said and RP88 suggests below, this is a path for content to enter Wikipedia without dual licensing. Blue Rasberry (talk) 13:37, 29 November 2016 (UTC))
I know that the policy around posting open license content into Wikipedia is shaky because I contributed to a new guide just started a few months ago called Wikipedia:Adding open license text to Wikipedia. So far as I know, the new suggestions posted there are the only guidance posted anywhere in English Wikipedia. I think that the newness of the "adding text" policy is supporting evidence that this is rarely done. I was unable to find many people posting text into Wikipedia when that policy was being developed. Because of that (striken following Isaacl's post with links. Blue Rasberry (talk) 13:40, 29 November 2016 (UTC)), I expect that practically all English Wikipedia content is submitted with dual licensing because it is so unusual to post open text into Wikipedia.
Do you have a guess about how much content is posted in a way that is not dual licensed? Do you think it is 1%? 5%? 10%? Blue Rasberry (talk) 20:01, 28 November 2016 (UTC)
If you haven't already seen it, here is the related licensing update page, which links to the corresponding licensing update page on meta Wikipedia that describes the motivation. There is also a questions and answers page on meta. isaacl (talk) 00:12, 29 November 2016 (UTC)
Regarding existing guidance on reusing text from other sources, if you haven't seen it already, there is Wikipedia:FAQ/Copyright#Can I add something to Wikipedia that I got from somewhere else.3F. isaacl (talk) 17:01, 29 November 2016 (UTC)
I don't know a percentage, there are at least ~700 articles that are not dual-licensed and can only be used under CC-BY-SA 3.0. You can find some by looking at Category:Articles with imported Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 text. Relevant templates include {{CCBYSASource}}, {{CC-notice}}, and possibly other text attribution templates. —RP88 (talk) 01:20, 29 November 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for sharing. I had not seen this kind of article tagging. That is insightful.
700 articles out of 5,000,000+ total is not many. Also, I browsed the articles in that category, and it seems that many of them are mixed with dual-licensed text such that parts of the article do have dual licensing. If there were 50,000 articles then that would be 1%. If there are only a few collections like this of one-license content, then it seems to me that most of Wikipedia's content is dual-licensed. Blue Rasberry (talk) 22:42, 29 November 2016 (UTC)

Present statements - propose change

I think these statements are correct.

  1. The majority of text on English Wikipedia - likely more than 90% - is dual licensed with CC and GFDL
  2. The majority of incoming submissions to English Wikipedia - likely more than 90% - is dual licensed with CC and GFDL
  3. The notice to readers on English Wikipedia says that the text is CC licensed, but not GFDL licensed

@Isaacl, RP88, and Hut 8.5: - I am guessing about the 90% number. I think the truth is closer to 99%+, but 90% seems safe and anything less than 51% seems implausible to me. Would any of you doubt the accuracy of any of these statements?

Assuming that these statements are correct, I would like to advocate that the copyright notice change from "Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License" to that, plus "and the GFDL". I feel that the text for submission should be reconciled with the text for reading. I think that Wikipedia's copyright notice should be aligned with the majority of content, and since the majority of content is dual licensed, then that is how the copyright notice should read. The truth of situation is more complicated, but it is more correct more often to say CC+GFDL than to say CC only.

Am I missing something here? Is there a counterpoint to this? Am I wrong on some premise? Blue Rasberry (talk) 22:42, 29 November 2016 (UTC)

Just a note, the copyright footer can be found at MediaWiki:Wikimedia-copyright. Unless something has changed, all copyright related notices like these cannot just be changed without approval from WMF-Legal. If this is going to happen you are going to need to notify someone. User:Mdennis (WMF) is probably a good start as she would be able to get in touch with the proper people. --Majora (talk) 22:49, 29 November 2016 (UTC)
  • Not sure it's a good idea to put legal text on lots of pages which is factually incorrect, although I suppose we could use something like "and unless otherwise noted the GFDL". But yes this text shouldn't be changed without consultation with WMF Legal. Hut 8.5 07:24, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
I think the existing notice ”Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. See Terms of Use for details“ is fine. The phrase "Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License” accurately states WMF's intention that all text should be CC-BY-SA licensed and the phrase “additional terms may apply" accommodates both cases in which rights are further restricted (such as short quotations of non-free text) as well as cases in which rights are more expansive (such as the common case that most text on en.WP is also available under the GFDL). The Terms of Use carefully identifies both category of cases. —RP88 (talk) 10:55, 30 November 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for the comments everyone.
@Majora: Thanks for the link to that MediaWiki page here on English Wikipedia. I did not know where to find that. I posted a similar comment there to ask for more information. Yes, if there is to be a change, then WMF legal would have to approve it.
@Hut 8.5: I confirm, it would be incorrect to say that all 5 million articles have GFDL licenses. However, I think it is true for all but somewhere between 100-5000 of them, so it is almost always true. I imagined that the CC license and GFDL were of equal value when they apply. If they are of equal value, then perhaps there are 5 million problems in not list both, versus only 5000 problems by mistakenly listing both in the rare cases where only one applies. As soon as a human or bot touches any article with a copyrightable edit, then immediately that article has GFDL licensed components. It might be the case that there are 0 articles with only CC licensing; I am not sure. (not relevant - my mistake) Blue Rasberry (talk) 22:29, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
@RP88: Some of what you say seems right, but if we omit one brand name, then why not omit all? We could say, "Text is available under a free and open license; additional terms may apply". If we list one brand of license, and actually two apply, then does that mean that one license is less relevant as compared to the other? Giving credit to both seems like such a small thing. Why was it decided to omit the GFDL?
Thanks. I still am not clear on what happened, but I appreciate everything shared until now. Everything that everyone here seems reasonable, but I am still thinking about this. If anyone thinks they have another perspective or insight then I still would like to learn more. Blue Rasberry (talk) 23:31, 6 December 2016 (UTC)
The GFDL was designed for printed software manuals and so has provisions that are burdensome in the context of a wiki. For strong proponents of the GFDL, these provisions are important; for others, CC BY-SA is more permissive and thus more flexible in how it permits reuse. So whether or not promoting the use of GFDL on a equal basis is a good thing depends on how you feel about the GFDL.
Regarding "As soon as a human ... touches any article with a copyrightable edit": since contributions are released on a dual-licensed basis, someone can still re-use that edit in another work that is solely CC BY-SA. The re-user is free to pick either license. isaacl (talk) 03:25, 7 December 2016 (UTC)

CheckUser data retention period

Why is CheckUser data kept for such a short time? SPI clerks are sometimes reluctant to take action in the absence of such strong evidence. In that case, the WP:Standard offer is unenforceable. As a result, the community has to repeatedly go through the long tedious process of ejecting troublesome editors it has already ejected before. Can we improve on this? Burninthruthesky (talk) 09:24, 14 December 2016 (UTC)

Privacy is one of the Wikimedia movement's core principles, that's why. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 09:36, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
In that case, why keep it at all? How does keeping data that's only used in alleged cases of abuse infringe anyone's privacy anyway? Burninthruthesky (talk) 09:55, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
After a bit of digging, I found this in m:Privacy policy:
Wikimedia Sites are collaborative, with users writing most of the policies and selecting from amongst themselves people to hold certain administrative rights. These rights may include access to limited amounts of otherwise nonpublic information about recent contributions and activity by other users. They use this access to help protect against vandalism and abuse, fight harassment of other users, and generally try to minimize disruptive behavior on the Wikimedia Sites.
... and this from WP:CheckUser:
Information about users (like their IP address) is retained for a limited period on Wikimedia Foundation sites. Data retention is limited in this way because incidents or actions that are not current rarely require investigation.
My question remains unanswered. Burninthruthesky (talk) 14:50, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
Keeping some information for some time is necessary for fighting off socks, vandals and some less common uses. But keeping it around for too much can create privacy issues, as well as open Wikimedia up for attempts by third-parties to gain access to it, say by hacking or court orders. It's a compromise between these two aspects. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 14:58, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
Once data has been decided to be kept by a checkuser past the usual limit, it is essentially there unless someone manually removes it. And previously when I asked about this, a CU confirmed no one was actively removing kept information. Only in death does duty end (talk) 09:27, 16 December 2016 (UTC)

@Burninthruthesky: The data is kept for such a short period to protect all of our users, sockpuppets and not alike. The only way to be truly safe against things like a subpoena, in which the Wikimedia Foundation would be legally obligated to hand the data over, is to not have the data at all. I believe it is a compromise that must be taken. --(ʞɿɐʇ) ɐuɐʞsǝp 15:15, 14 December 2016 (UTC)

  • I see that no effort was made to publicize this discussion amongst active participants in WP:SPI nor the CheckUsers themselves. Clerks are hardly reluctant to take action when good evidence is provided; CheckUser data can sometimes add strong evidence in a case but just as often not, and if you can't make a case based on an account's behaviour then your case is very weak. Apart from the privacy policy and other points that others have said here, the data itself becomes uninformative the older it gets. People move, edit from different locations and/or on different equipment, other users take their place, it all becomes a mess. However, information in the CheckUser log (separate from the data itself) is preserved, so that information can potentially be used in future cases. Ivanvector (Talk/Edits) 16:17, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
@Ivanvector: I believe this noticeboard is an appropriate method of publicizing this sort of policy question, and I'm grateful for these informative replies. I cannot think of any stronger form of evidence than CheckUser data. That kind of information isn't usually available to other users, except in rare cases when a sock account accidentally self-discloses their IP address. Even when that has happened, I have still had to face proposed sanctions after making reports partly based on such evidence. Nobody took any action against the culprit until further recent evidence emerged and a CheckUser block was made by Bbb23. That is why I perceive a reluctance to act on other evidence alone. Burninthruthesky (talk) 07:25, 16 December 2016 (UTC)

State news/newspapers as RS

Newspapers in general are considered reliable sources. However, many developing countries have news and media outlets that are state owned, and directly controlled. One of the examples that I see frequently are the Egyptian news outlets in general. Egypt ranks low on the Freedom of Press report, in pretty much every aspect, making it one of the worst.[1] We can also see reports of all media being stifled and made to dance to the regime's tune, being private, or state-owned.[2]

Obviously these sources (newspapers and TV channels) pass the criteria for verifiability, and reliability. And, in the case of state-aligned private media, seemingly fit the independence criterion.

Egypt isn't the only example, but it's the one I'm most familiar with.

In a country or region where press freedom is oppressed, the only voice heard can be the state's. And what little opposing voices heard are usually in the form of unreliable sources, like blogs or social media. So, if an incident happens in that country, and the government orders the media to accuse a group or person, this is what we have in the form of "reliable source", and can be safely edited into Wikipedia. And if the country or incident isn't in the spotlight, it's almost certain there won't be neutral outside reporting or investigation (for example in The Guardian, or WashPo, or any other news outlet), to counter the state's claims.

What's the opinion on such outlets?

This has to be determined on a case-by-case basis, as it should be for all sources. For example, if The Pyongyang Times announces that someone has been appointed to a senior government or military position then it can be considered reliable, but if it reports that Kim Jong-un's first ever round of golf scored 38 under par or that someone who the leadership has taken a dislike to is a traitor and a child-molester it should be taken with a large bucketfull of salt. (talk) 17:26, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
What if a state newspaper says that the government has captured a terror attack perpetrator, but that country is known to be an oppressive regime with a long sheet of human rights abuse? That the accusation is very plausibly false and fabricated? There's noway of making sure if it's legitimate because it's not "significant" or high profile. This is what I mean. —Hexafluoride Ping me if you need help, or post on my talk 19:15, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
Any sort of accusation made by such a regime is suspicious. It is, however, a reliable source that the goverment claimed that the person they arrested is a terror attack perpetrator, but it may be their own fabrication to defend themselves against the claim that they arrested him with no justifyable cause. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 19:38, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
Again, this needs to be judged on a case-by-case basis. That would be a cast-iron reliable source for the regime claiming to have captured someone, a rather less reliable source for them actually capturing someone, and an unreliable source for that person being a terror attack perpetrator. (talk) 20:09, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
  1. ^ "Egypt | Country report | Freedom of the Press | 2016". Retrieved 13 December 2016. 
  2. ^ "The 'Sisification' of Egypt's media". Middle East Eye. Retrieved 13 December 2016. 

while i sympathise with people who have had their rights violated and states should not try to censor people but things like facebook twitter and reddit are not considered reliable sources but neither would countries that have had a history of propaganda also whose social media post would you cite however just because a news source is owned by the state does not by itself make the news source unreliable but if the state is the only news source and the state attacks peoples right to speak no matter how unpopular the opinion than the state source then they are probably engaging in propaganda i am sorry about the human rights violations that happen however a self published blog or social media are not to be included into wikipedia because whose facebook or twitter post would you cite and whose blog would you cite i think in response to your question i belive it is probably better to not put on wikipedia unless you can find relible sources just because this is about an oppressive country actions does not mean you can just throw out the guidelines i do admit this is a complicated question and the ignore all rules is relevant to this question here the quote "If a rule prevents you from improving or maintaining Wikipedia, ignore it." i have never encountered any wikipedia policy on what to do in this situation--Jonnymoon96 (talk) 03:34, 20 December 2016 (UTC)

Presidential cabinet members

This concerns the criteria for inclusion for Category:Trump administration cabinet members and Template:Trump cabinet.

One editor removed Ben Carson despite this announcement, setting off a bit of an edit war.

So, what is the criteria for inclusion? When Trump announces a choice? When he submits his choice to congress? When the choice is confirmed? Is is possible to be confirmed before the inauguration, and if so are those confirmed choices excluded from our cat and template until the inauguration?

I would note that on 22 November 2008 Hillary Clinton was placed in Category:Obama administration cabinet members[11] and on 19 December 2008 Ron Kirk was placed in the same cat.[12] I didn't check any other names. --Guy Macon (talk) 04:38, 8 December 2016 (UTC)

Pretty sure no one has been officially nominated, and I suspect the Senate will not entertain any nominations at least until the electoral college makes the vote official. That said, the announcement from Trump is as clear as they get. Either Ben Carson should be in the category and template, or no one should. I do think care needs to be taken not to imply on any page that Ben Carson is a current cabinet member, but there are plenty of ways to accomplish that. Someguy1221 (talk) 04:57, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
  • The Senate can't vote on any nominations until they're actually made. Trump can't make them until he is sworn in. Nothing to do with the Electoral College. And the category has been removed from other intended nominees. It was being already being done until Guy Macon decided to worry about what happened 8 years ago. Niteshift36 (talk) 01:57, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
I have to wonder why inclusion in Category:Obama administration cabinet members was allowed two months before Obama took office but inclusion in Category:Trump administration cabinet members is not being allowed. --Guy Macon (talk) 05:04, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
That's true, that would be a double standard if that happened. However, more importantly, some or most of these people have to be confirmed by the United States Senate. The electors from Electoral College haven't even voted yet. Let's hope there are not too many surprises at that fateful event on December 19, 2016. Quis separabit? 05:44, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
If that happened? It did happen. Obama's picks were placed in the category long before they were confirmed and long before the electoral college voted. Trump's picks are being kept out of the category. Why the double standard? --Guy Macon (talk) 10:21, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Eight years is a very long time on wikipedia. We have become much more picky about many things. What you perceive as a double standard may simply be a shifting of standards. ϢereSpielChequers 10:29, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
If it is a new standard, it should be applied equally across all relevant pages. Someguy1221 (talk) 10:30, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
  • It is being equally applied to other potential cabinet members. Was for a week or so until Guy got involved. Niteshift36 (talk) 03:54, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
It may well be. A couple of years ago I was reverted over some post because the chap had been announced but wouldn't be in post until his predecessors retirement day. I've seen some sports based deletions because players had been announced for squads but not yet turned out for the team. Can you point to some breaches of WP:Crystal that we currently accept? ϢereSpielChequers 10:39, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
The best recent example that I can think of is the wedding of William and Kate. At 11:20 AM on the day of the wedding Jimmy Wales moved the Kate Middleton article. ϢereSpielChequers 10:48, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Fair enough. The standards have changed (I am not going to be happy if they change back the next time the US changes presidents). So let's be consistent and depopulate Template:Trump cabinet. --Guy Macon (talk) 13:35, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Well, I edited the template in a manner that would clarify - how about changing the category too, by adding "choices" at the end - the general problem, I sense, is that Wikipedia should not present the future as the present or the past and be very clear about that. Alanscottwalker (talk) 14:30, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
The template currently says "Proposed members", that's factual and easily changed on Inauguration day. I also think it would be correct to create a category for Category:Proposed Trump administration cabinet members or some other wording to reflect their status and then recat the lot when they take office. ϢereSpielChequers 14:39, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Good. Alanscottwalker (talk) 14:41, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
  • This seems like a heated issue, which is likely to generate a lot of edit warring if not handled correctly. I propose the following method to solve it:
  1. All disputed categories are removed from the relevant articles, if only to return to the status quo ante bellum for the time being, so neither side is favored until we reach a conclusion.
  2. No categories may be added until the RFC is concluded
  3. The RFC is to remain open for 60 days to allow everyone who wishes to contribute, and to give sufficient time for the various parties to gather evidence, present their cases, and for uninvolved admins to evaluate the evidence and enact the results
  4. After 60 days, and not before, the categories can be added if and only if the RFC reaches a consensus to do so.
This discussion should apply ONLY to this specific election, and should not be binding on any future elections, however. Every case is unique, and should be discussed on its own merits. --Jayron32 15:19, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
OK. Alanscottwalker (talk) 15:45, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Since Inauguration day is less than 60 days from now this would resolve things in one particular direction and then the whole thing would be moot on inauguration day. I'm not sure that counts as an attempt to achieve consensus. Does anyone have an objection to doing something similar to last time, but maybe have "proposed" in the category name as well as the blurb and update it on inauguration day rather than over a hundred days later? Eight years ago we were still describing the cabinet as "A category for media-speculated future members of the cabinet in the Administration of President-elect Barack Obama" until May 2009. I'm rather hoping we can do a little better these days. ϢereSpielChequers 16:03, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
They aren't actually Cabinet members until approved by the Senate, which only takes a simple majority. This doesn't seem complicated. It shouldn't have happened 8 years ago and it shouldn't happen now. This should have nothing to do with politics. A category with proposed and a category to be filled after nominations start being approved. This isn't rocket science. Doug Weller talk 17:18, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Well yeah, the simpler solution is to actually do nothing until they are actually doing their job. But some people didn't want to do that. So my proposal was to ensure that we are as deliberative as we need to be to make sure the correct result gets done. Per WP:DEADLINE we needn't rush. We can wait 60 days to add these categories. But only if there is consensus to do so. There does not appear to be consensus right now. 60 days is a nice time to think about it. Give people who care immensely about it the time to consider the alternatives, and visa-versa. --Jayron32 18:41, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Or more to the point: If there is a conflict that goes away in the near future if we do nothing; then the solution is to do nothing. The problem would then go away. No need to fight about it. Leave the categories out, and do nothing. There's no need to do anything over such a minor issue which will just work itself out without any discussion on our part in a little while. If it will work itself out, we don't even need to discuss it! --Jayron32 18:44, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
You are both right -- I guess the only reason to have such a large discussion would be to hopefully document a way to handle it for future years - and probably if similar things are happening elsewhere or in lower races, etc., work toward, edit advice, template instruction, etc. Alanscottwalker (talk) 19:38, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
Why sixty days, Jayron? The inauguration's in only 39. pbp 15:29, 12 December 2016 (UTC)

I see a mention above about "the RfC"; is there one, and if so, could someone post a link to it? If there is not an RfC (which I doubt is actually needed) but simply this discussion, I would say 1) no one should be in the "Trump administration cabinet members" category until they are nominated, approved by the Senate, and sworn in. That should not have been done 8 years ago either. 2) The suggestion to create a "proposed cabinet members" category is an excellent one, as it should satisfy all the editors who are eager to add "cabinet member" status for a person who simply isn't one yet. --MelanieN (talk) 21:42, 8 December 2016 (UTC)

P.S. to User:WereSpielChequers: I encourage you to go ahead and create and populate the "proposed" category so we can start to use it. But no, the entries in it do not get moved to the "cabinet members" category on inauguration day. They get moved when they have been nominated by the president, approved by the Senate, and sworn in. And we shouldn't do away with the "proposed" category; he will be nominating new and/or replacement cabinet members throughout his term. --MelanieN (talk) 22:10, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
I agree with MelanieN and Doug Weller. There's only one President at a time, and one cabinet at a time. No need to jump the gun.- MrX 23:11, 8 December 2016 (UTC)
  • How interesting that I am the editor who removed it, but Guy Macon didn't see fit to notify me of this. Regardless, his reasoning about something happened one way 8 years ago is bogus. As WereSpielChequers correctly points out, things here can and do change. Trump isn't president yet, so none of these folks have actually been nominated. Assuming he does actually nominate all of them, they then go for Senate confirmation. If they're confirmed, then they are actually members of the cabinet and the category applies. Not before. Even on inauguration day, they may get nominated, but still aren't the Secretary of XYZ. It's worth noting that this category has been removed or hidden on the other articles. Editors just need to stop jumping the gun. I'd also have to say that the idea of a "proposed" category doesn't sound all that useful. Niteshift36 (talk) 01:34, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
I don't think it's a matter of wanting to add "cabinet member status" to people, it's a matter of adding information to WP. The group of people that the President-almost-elect has nominated to be in his cabinet is of legitimate interest before he and they take up their actual posts (assuming that they do so), so there ought to be a category for them. Chuntuk (talk) 17:32, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Except that he hasn't nominated them. He can't nominate them until he's president. Then he can nominate them and the process can start. Semantics matter. Niteshift36 (talk) 00:33, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
  • OK, not "nominated", but "identified", "suggested", "named", or whatever other word you deem acceptable for the incoming president making known in advance who he expects to be in his cabinet. It's a group of people that have excited a certain amount of media attention and that people are interested in for a host of reasons. I think we should have a category for them on Wikipedia. Chuntuk (talk) 16:25, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
  • PS, we have an article for Cabinet of Donald Trump, why the heck can't we have a category? Chuntuk (talk) 16:30, 14 December 2016 (UTC)


Proposal: empty Category:Trump administration cabinet members, create Category:Trump administration proposed cabinet members, fill the proposed cabinet members cat with anyone trump announces as his choice, and move add the names to the cabinet members cat as they are confirmed. --Guy Macon (talk) 20:35, 9 December 2016 (UTC) Edited 23:55, 9 December 2016 (UTC)

  • Support as proposer. --Guy Macon (talk)
  • Support - But I don't think you really need to move anything - they will always fit in the proposed category (even after they are confirmed or after they fade away) - i.e., for those who are confirmed, just add the new category. Alanscottwalker (talk) 20:57, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Excellent point. A cat that contains all of the proposed cabinet members including those not confirmed would also be useful. I edited the above proposal, changing "move" to "add". --Guy Macon (talk) 23:55, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Support but don't totally empty the "cabinet members" category. We should remove any people from it until they are confirmed, but there are a couple of relevant general articles in it that belong there and can stay there. --MelanieN (talk) 23:58, 9 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Support, but I disagree that the names should remain in the proposed category once they become cabinet members.- MrX 00:35, 10 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Question: Why are we in such a hurry? As mentioned above, this is a "problem" that will work itself out in less time than a RfC. And I see someone has already changed it and put the category on BLP's. Niteshift36 (talk) 03:59, 11 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose: Overly bureaucratic pbp 15:29, 12 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Support Though I'd personally move people from Proposed to Actual category once they're in post. If we assume that most (if not all) people who are proposed will become actual cabinet members, the two categories would become near-duplicates Chuntuk (talk) 17:32, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Comment sure it can be decided at the time whether to "move" or add (as it will be, no doubt, by whomever does the edit). The 'add' language of the proposal is flexible enough for that. Alanscottwalker (talk) 12:21, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose Because there is no reason that the target should exist in 1 year. If the person does not get appointed to office, for whatever reason, then the fact that they were proposed at one point is just not defining enough. We can deal with this as a list or article, we can mention it in the articles on the people. Not all articles need to be identified by every biographical data mentioned in them. There is no problem in waiting to categorize these people until their nomination is confirmed. For various reasons some proposed nominations may be withdrawn before January 20th, some people, even if right now they say they will serve, will maybe change their mind before formally nominated, and some nominations may either die in committee or be voted down. In those cases this will just not be defining enough to categorize these people by.John Pack Lambert (talk) 01:26, 22 December 2016 (UTC)

RfC on hosting content from countries that do not have copyright relations with the U.S.

You may be interested in this RfC: Wikipedia_talk:Copyrights#RfC:_Hosting_content_from_countries_that_do_not_have_copyright_relations_with_the_U.S.. Ramaksoud2000 (Talk to me) 18:11, 22 December 2016 (UTC)

I propose greater clarity for defining "when nationality and ethnicity is relevant to a persons notability"

According to the MOS for Biographies of living persons, a person's nationality "can be in the lead if relevant to the subject's notability." Similarly it says ethnicity "should generally not be in the lead unless it is relevant to the subject's notability". So when is it relevant? Opinions seem to be all over the map (don't mind the pun) and a great deal of time is wasted on arguments and disruptive editing. Greater clarity could save time and help prevent some disruptive editing.

I propose greater clarity on this MOS guideline, by adding examples of what is and what is not acceptable, preferably using examples of well known people.

Thanks Dig Deeper (talk) 19:32, 15 December 2016 (UTC)

One obvious case: People with certain positions of notability are clearly notable due to their nationality. For example, the fact that Benjamin Netanyahu is Israeli is clearly part of his notability, since he is notable as the Prime Minister of Israel. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 05:57, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
Agreed. With government positions the relevance is obvious. I would like to clarity on the less obvious examples. How about sports teams. I would think the olympics is obvious, but what about other teams, like NHL players or soccer players. For example Andy Murray, who plays for Great Britain and is Scottish. How about in film, when is nationality relevant? Talk:Denis Villeneuve a film director and writer, is he Canadian or French Canadian or avoid mentioning it in the lead altogether (relevance)? People are very passionate about this stuff.Dig Deeper (talk) 19:23, 16 December 2016 (UTC)

Dig Deeper, you've incorrectly stated the MOS language regarding nationality. It does not say that nationality "can be in the lead if relevant to the subject's notability" (emphasis yours); that language you quoted from the MOS is instead regarding place of birth or death. The MOS (and overwhelming editor consensus) instead presumes that nationality is the best way to provide "context" for the subject and so should "usually" be in the opening paragraph. You appear to be conflating nationality with ethnicity, and those are two different things. And this is what the MOS says on that: "Ethnicity, religion, or sexuality should generally not be in the lead unless it is relevant to the subject's notability. Similarly, previous nationalities or the country of birth should not be mentioned in the lead unless they are relevant to the subject's notability." (emphasis added) postdlf (talk) 19:42, 16 December 2016 (UTC)

@Postdlf: OK, I can see now what you mean. I misread that, thanks for pointing that out. The first sentence after context is a little disjointed from the first sentence above that states "The opening paragraph should usually have:...Context (location or nationality)". As part of adding clarity, do you think would it be acceptable for me to add under the subheading context, first sentence "The lead should provide context." I know it's repetitive, but when editors are emotional and quoting the manual of style, repetition can be a good thing.
As far as conflating nationality and ethnicity and place of birth, you're probably right. And I'm not the only one as you can see from the 2 talk pages I listed. This is one rationale for adding clarity to the MOS and providing some examples of what not to do.Dig Deeper (talk) 20:22, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
Looking over those talk pages you linked, the issue isn't at all confusion over what the MOS says about nationality, it's rather about what editors think nationality means in the context of Quebec and Scotland. Which has nothing to do with our guidelines, about notability, or even about those people or their careers, but is rather reflective of the real world political issues surrounding the status of those places. postdlf (talk) 20:40, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
@Postdlf:I see your point. The essay WP:Nationality of people from the United Kingdom and lengthy history and lengthy history gives some insight as to the complexity of this. Perhaps similar essays should be created for other places like Quebec and first nations etc etc.Dig Deeper (talk) 23:29, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
My understanding of that phrasing in MOS:BLPLEAD is that the ethnicity or nationality should be included if it's necessary in understanding that person's notability. For example, Yang Liwei was the first Chinese astronaut in space. Similarly, Ilhan Omar was the first Somali American legislator. The ethnicities and nationalities of these people are integral to understanding their notability. In general, I'm opposed to WP:Instruction creep, and in this case, I think the MOS entry is appropriately broad. AlexEng(TALK) 00:20, 17 December 2016 (UTC)
You're making the same mistake as the OP; ethnicity and nationality are not interchangeable and are treated very differently in the MOS. postdlf (talk) 00:23, 17 December 2016 (UTC)
Not the same mistake, but a mistake. I read the portion about previous nationalities and failed to process the "previous" part. New example of proper usage for nationalities: Isaac Asimov includes only "American" in the lead, even though he was born in Russia. AlexEng(TALK) 01:08, 17 December 2016 (UTC)
The MOS need not be more specific on this, just reworded slightly and perhaps given some examples of what not to do. As it stands right now, this section on the lead reads awkwardly and requires a very cautious and careful reading. Dig Deeper (talk) 06:08, 17 December 2016 (UTC)
I made a proposal for a slight reorganizing at the MOS talk page. I'm not trying to change the meaning and I'm not trying to make it more specific, I only moved some things around slightly and repeated key phrases so it reads easier. The meaning is the same. Please have a look and leave your comments there.Dig Deeper (talk) 19:28, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
  • I would say that nationality should always be included in the lead, except when it is disputed (for example Nicholas Copernicus). Ethnicity should not be in the lead unless it is seen as a major defining characteristic of the person.John Pack Lambert (talk) 01:29, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
  • On the ostensible question, my initial answer is that if the lead could read "____ is the first Pinky Russet Martian to ever...", then ethnicity and nationality are relevant. WhatamIdoing (talk) 19:48, 22 December 2016 (UTC)

Placing a single non-primary topic atop of dab pages

I was recently involved in an editing dispute at User talk:Bkonrad#Bismarck and Jefferson and Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Disambiguation pages#Listing a topic discriminatorily above others over whether Thomas Jefferson and Otto von Bismarck should be treated akin to a WP:PRIMARYREDIRECT on their respective dabpages, namely Jefferson (disambiguation) and Bismarck (disambiguation) respectively. When I first came across both Jefferson and Bismarck, I initially thought that the US president and German chancellor were primary redirects in their own right, however I saw the layout as rather strange (as it was different from e.g. Obama (disambiguation)), so I set about rectifying the dab layout. Just before I did so, I noticed that "(disambiguation)" wasn't in the title. I then realised the two statesmen were not primary redirects so I proceeded to move them both down to an appropriate section, so they could be treated like all other entries (without any perceived subjectivity absent a consensus). Soon after though, I was reverted a couple of times by the user aforestated who insisted that they both were undeniably the most sought-after articles on their respective dabpages. If that's his rationale, his mission should be to open a move discussion at both pages to confirm that they both qualify WP:PTOPIC. I have since added Jefferson Davis to Jefferson#top and another user added Bismarck, North Dakota to Bismarck#top (I later added the submarine ship). Just as a disclaimer, I think that adding the most significant entries (notice plural) at the top is totally reasonable, but for a single entry it is wrong and misleading unless it's because of a WP:PRIMARYREDIRECT situation (since otherwise it confuses us to believe that e.g. President Jefferson is the established primary topic, even though he isn't). MOS:DABORDER should be revised in my opinion, prohibiting the addition of less than two entries to the lede of a disambiguation page if it is not a primary redirect.--Nevéselbert 21:35, 22 December 2016 (UTC)

A topic can be the most commonly-searched one for a term and still fall short of meeting the WP:PRIMARYTOPIC test. Why would Thomas Jefferson get buried in the middle of Jefferson unless there is another equally prominent topic to place with it at the top? A reader isn't going to either know or care about whether the one link at the topic is considered by us to meet WP:PRIMARYTOPIC or not, they are just going to look for the destination link, which is highly likely to be Thomas Jefferson, and that link should be correspondingly prominently displayed.--Trystan (talk) 03:11, 23 December 2016 (UTC)
That's just plain confusing! Confusing readers into thinking Thomas Jefferson is the sole most likely destination page for searching "Jefferson" is misleading at best and downright deceptive at worst. It isn't the primary topic, for crying out loud. Why confuse our editors (who aren't as thick as you may think) into thinking that President Jefferson is the sole primary topic? Goddamn, this is absolutely maddening. I find it extraordinary that you are so blind not to see that. Mindblown, really.--Nevéselbert 13:58, 23 December 2016 (UTC)
How is it confusing or misleading or deceptive? Thomas Jefferson routinely gets between 8,000 and 12,000 page views per day. Can you point to any other topic known as Jefferson that gets close to that? The nearest I can see are the bands Jefferson Airplane and Jefferson Starship, which typically get between 1,000 and 2,000 views per day with occasional spikes. Perhaps there is a case for Jefferson to become a WP:PRIMARYREDIRECT to Thomas Jefferson, although it may be difficult to clearly establish Thomas gets more page views than all the other Jeffersons combined. But even without being a redirect, it makes perfect sense to make it easy for readers find what is by far the most likely target. olderwiser 15:42, 23 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Per above, the OP has not made a cogent case that it is "confusing" and the evidence seems against that contention, even contrary to it. And looking at it a bit more, the difference in positions claimed is whether one, two, or three should go at the top out of a disambiguation list. (I think you should be able to work that out -- but if not, go to WP:DR) -- Alanscottwalker (talk) 16:22, 23 December 2016 (UTC)
    @Alanscottwalker: Maybe I'm just being pedantic, but it just looks confusing for one entry to be placed above all the others if it isn't the established primary topic. It just feels odd. I find it hard to comprehend. It makes it all look inconsistent.--Nevéselbert 18:02, 23 December 2016 (UTC)
Well, like 99% of the world, try thinking about it as if you knew (or felt) nothing about ptopic, perhaps. (ptopic, is not readily on point, anyway). Alanscottwalker (talk) 19:02, 23 December 2016 (UTC)
When there is a well-defined secondary topic, I think this would be a very good practice. (To avoid confusion, the main secondary topic -- which is what I'll call it for the moment) would presumably still be listed in the alphabetic list. Cross-referencesare a device to help the reader, they're not part of the encyclopedia articles. The reason for having fixed rules for them is to aid the reader by providing some consistency; the reason for making additional ones when necessary are similarly, to help the reader in special cases. We are in my opinion unfortunately constrained by our software to having a single title for a page, and anything we can do to ameliorate it would be a good idea. DGG ( talk ) 05:10, 25 December 2016 (UTC)

Is this edit appropriate behavior?

A prolific contributor to Wikipedia created a page apparently indented as initial scratchwork that would grow into an article, and when its inappropriateness as an article in that embryonic form was pointed out, moved it into the "Draft" space. Then someone proposed its deletion from the "Draft" space on the grounds that it was advertising. There was in fact no hint of advertising in it; at best the person who proposed speedy deletion was acting without paying attention. Is this an appropriate edit? Michael Hardy (talk) 22:56, 25 December 2016 (UTC)

I took a look at the deleted content. I really don't think that it should have been deleted as it was; the deletion guidelines for items in the Draft namespace appear at Wikipedia:Drafts#Deleting a draft. Does the original author want to have it restored? P.S. an alternative to using Draft namespace is to use a Userspace draft; i.e. creating a subpage of a userpage or creating a sandbox of draft page set (like this, for instance: [[13]] ). --User:Ceyockey (talk to me) 02:09, 27 December 2016 (UTC)

RfC on Miss America and Miss USA entrants

Procedural Close . The RFC is too vaguely formatted for the community to take up any discussion. Please post a neutrally toned clear question rather than including personal opinions, hypotheses and reflections.Exclude non-necessary emotional details.Light❯❯❯ Saber 09:43, 27 December 2016 (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.

Hypothesis #1:

Wikipedia readers want reliably sourced information, as available, for a broad range of topics; including the entrants to Miss America and to Miss USA, each of whom have won notable state-level pageants.

Hypothesis #2:

WP:Deletion policy is a "widely accepted standard that all editors should normally follow", and as per WP:Deletion policy#Alternatives to deletion and WP:Deletion policy#CONTENT, merger of non-notable topics to suitable targets is accepted policy.

History: Miss America was established in 1921, and Miss USA established in 1952.  In 1979, Miss USA had 38 million viewers.  As per our Miss USA article, in the early 1980s, the TV coverage regularly topped the Nielsen ratings.  The popularity of these two pageants waned between 1990 and 2000, but since 2010 both have recovered some lost television coverage. 

Associated state-level pageants are notable: All of these entrants are winners of notable state-level pageants, see Category:Miss USA state pageants and Category:Miss America state pageants

Entrants may or may not be Wikipedia notable: Notability is not a key parameter for inclusion of these individuals, as Wikipedia non-notable topics can be covered as mini-bios at a suitable target topic. 

Common elements in a bio: The typical state pageant winner is less than 24 years of age, and has competed in several beauty pageants before winning the state title.  Winning the state title carries with it some scholarship money and a one-year reign, which means public appearances in various events around the state, as well as the national TV event.  Occasionally, these winners are recognized by the state legislature.  Besides being state celebrities, these winners typically get limited international coverage, including some coverage in foreign languages.

Wikiproject Beauty Pageants: I am not a member of WP:WikiProject Beauty Pageants and the project page is marked semi-active.  One of their strongest proponents, User:Dravecky, died in April of this year.  Unscintillating (talk) 02:16, 27 December 2016 (UTC)

  • Support #1 and #2 as proponent.  Unscintillating (talk) 02:16, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Confusion: This does not actually seem to be formatted as a proposal but instead as a reflection of personal preferences. The pseudo-hypotheses should be reformatted as one definite proposal for clarity. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 06:32, 27 December 2016 (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.

RfC2 on Miss America and Miss USA entrants

Procedural Close . Another frivolous RFC.Please don't skirt the real question.Putting up accepted Wikipedia standards and rules along with your personal reflections as hypotheses and then proposing to discuss(??) them without any substance is hardly any way to conduct a RFC.Propose the question in a clean neutral tone.Light❯❯❯ Saber 15:16, 27 December 2016 (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.


Wikipedia readers want reliably sourced information, as available, for a broad range of topics; including the entrants to Miss America and to Miss USA, each of whom have won notable state-level pageants.

WP:Deletion policy is a "widely accepted standard that all editors should normally follow", and as per WP:Deletion policy#Alternatives to deletion and WP:Deletion policy#CONTENT, merger of non-notable topics to suitable targets is accepted policy.

Explanatory material: Merriam Webster ( definition #2 for hypothesis is, "an interpretation of a practical situation or condition taken as the ground for action."  Unscintillating (talk) 13:23, 27 December 2016 (UTC)

  • Support as proponent.  Unscintillating (talk) 13:23, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose? - I don't know that the assumptions of this hypothesis are true (have all entrants to those two pageants won notable state-level pageants?). The second is just quoting common practice. Why are you omitting the actual ask? — Rhododendrites talk \\ 14:57, 27 December 2016 (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.

Do maps need to be factually sourced?

I found some map files of Mesoamerica that didn't seem very accurate to me. I looked on the image information and there wasn't any source beyond 'own work'.

So I know image files need documentation on their copyright status, but in the case of diagrams, do they need to be able to back up claims they make in proper sources? --TangoFett (talk) 08:55, 19 December 2016 (UTC)

Presumably they are on Commons? Commons does not have a verifiability policy or an original research policy. Users can create what they like as long as it complies with Commons: Criteria for inclusion. The principle content criterion is that it "must be realistically useful for an educational purpose". If you use the maps on Wikipedia, however, any claims you derive from the maps must be verifiable in reliable sources. As an open wiki, Commons can't be considered a reliable source. The source the image came from might be reliable (eg scan from an out of copyright book) but a users own work definitely isn't. SpinningSpark 09:56, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
Okay, so what do I do when I see an image file with unsourced information used in a Wikipedia article? --TangoFett (talk) 11:11, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
If its something controversial (modern borders of disputed regions for example) remove it and ask for a valid source on the talkpage. If its something uncontroversial, start a discussion on the talkpage or possibly at the Reliable Sources noticeboard. It would help if you could provide a link here so people have a better idea. Only in death does duty end (talk) 11:14, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
I actually separately had a similar issue at Polygyny's map. --Izno (talk) 21:18, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
That wouldnt be a problem assuming the data used to colour the map is sourced. A current world map is a world map. Only in death does duty end (talk) 09:32, 20 December 2016 (UTC)
You are probably looking for WP:OI. You may also be interested in WP:PERTINENCE. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:29, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
So the maps I'm referring to in particular are File:Mesoamérica y Centroamerica prehispanica siglo XVI.svg used in Mesoamerica (The author replied back to me with a large list of sources), File:Territorial Organization of the Aztec Empire 1519.png used in Aztec Empire, and File:Toltec influence.jpg used in Toltec Empire (and the emblem associated with it). Though I now have sources for the first image, none of them have citations in the articles they're used. Due to its nature, this stuff is harder to verify than Old World history. Though both should have their proper sources, it's important that these have information to back them up. --TangoFett (talk) 22:49, 23 December 2016 (UTC)
Perhaps it's worth remembering that the policy is "verifiability". If the sources exist that is fine. It might be useful to add them on the image page, of course. All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 18:20, 27 December 2016 (UTC).
There definitely ought to be some system in place to remind users uploading maps to provide the sources for the data they've used. There are all too many maps out there that give no indication of the sort and that could be, for all we know, completely made up. – Uanfala (talk) 12:53, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

Calling a person "late"

Is there a policy on calling a person who has died as "late"? It seems like it shouldn't be used because ventually everyone is going to be "late". An example is in Standin' on the Corner Park. Bubba73 You talkin' to me? 00:36, 19 December 2016 (UTC)

@Bubba73: I guess it would be considered a euphemism much like "passed away" and should be avoided if possible. Adding additional words like that is unnecessary in my opinion. If someone wants to know more about a person (and whether or not they are dead) that is what wikilinks are for. --Majora (talk) 00:42, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
Thanks, that is what I thought, but I wanted another opinion. For instance, we aren't going to put "the late George Washington" everywhere. Bubba73 You talkin' to me? 01:56, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
I think this is covered under WP:RELTIME "Absolute specifications of time are preferred to relative constructions using recently, currently, and so on,". I'd just avoid it. Dead is not a synonym. The song written by the late xyz coveys quite a different picture from the song written by the dead xyz where a seance and an ouija board would be needed. :) Dmcq (talk) 08:54, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
In some contexts, it may be useful to say that person was dead at some point of time, for example when some other event happened. -- (talk) 18:58, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
I don’t see a problem with the word in the right context. Saying someone “completed his late father’s symphony” works a lot better than saying he “completed the symphony written by his father who was now dead.” In the example given, though, it just isn’t at all relevant. We might as well be giving the current ages of the songwriters, which, no. — (talk) 03:53, 20 December 2016 (UTC)
In some cases, you could say "completed the work started by his recently deceased father". It depends what you want to communicate. "He completed the work started by his father", without indicating that his father had died, could be misunderstood that they were both living when the music was completed, and his father had just decided not to finish it himself. If the work is completed years later, though, the typical English phrase is "completed the work started by his late father". It's more concise and formal (and therefore more encyclopedic) than the main alternatives (e.g., "years after his father's death, he completed the work that his father had begun"). WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:26, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
"Late" is a construct seen often in obituaries. It's useful when you need to save space. Writing "John Doe, son of the late Richard Doe and Jane Roe" takes up less space than "John Doe, son of Richard Doe who passed away recently/some time ago, and Jane Roe, still living". Wikipedia is not burdened with these restrictions.--Auric talk 23:41, 26 December 2016 (UTC)
"Late" is also used to distinguish between two people of the same name. The more encyclopaedic construct is "John Doe (1921-1947)".
In other contexts I would say simply be careful: if the construct still seems useful, then use it.
All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 18:16, 27 December 2016 (UTC).
"Late" is not really a euphemism in the sense of "passed away". It simply avoids the awkwardness of using "dead" in sentences such as "The dead Harry Armbruster used to say...", which is hardly ever heard in English (at least American English). "Lucretia Armbruster passed away on Friday" is euphemistic, avoiding the use of the proper word "died", but "late" just seems to me to be an acceptable synonym. If using "late" bothers anyone, the best solution it to re-cast the sentence in such a way that it doesn't need to be used. Beyond My Ken (talk) 00:40, 29 December 2016 (UTC)

Proposed inclusion guidelines for beauty pageant winners.

Over at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Beauty Pageants we have as item 61 the following:I see no progress on this subject. Here is my extremely early set of ideas: 1. Winners of major national pageants (Miss America and Miss USA in the US) are generally presumed to be notable. 2. Winners of sub-national level pageants are not notable for such per se, even if they have won more than one. This does not stop them from passing the general notability guidelines for such if the coverage for such either reaches far beyond publications that are local to them, or is substantial and persistent. 3. It should be kept in mind that some beauty pageant winners are notable for other things.John Pack Lambert (talk) 02:43, 7 December 2016 (UTC) In the ensuing 14 days 3 people have made comments. I am trying to figure out how to get more attention.John Pack Lambert (talk) 01:32, 22 December 2016 (UTC)

the problem here is that the nature of the secondary coverage is at the mercy of the available local newspapers, and our rules about local sources, because I think it obvious that any state winner in anything with have a few articles that may be substantial. If we look at it in terms of the GNG, we have to decide on whether to allow in-atate sources for this material, and I am equally able to argue in either direction on something like that. For consistency, I'd support even a random chocie on this, just as long as it's settled. (But in any case one thing is clear--sometimes a state winner can be subsequently notable for something else.) DGG ( talk ) 05:14, 25 December 2016 (UTC)
Some US states have a larger population than significant countries. Having said that there is no reason that there cannot be a Miss East Viginia article which includes all the winners.
All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 18:23, 27 December 2016 (UTC).

Policy regarding "see also"s for bands

I recently suggested an edit to the rings of saturn article to remove a, "for the death core band see Rings of Saturn (band)" tag, on the grounds that the band was gaining unwarranted enrichment from its positioning at the top of a much more popular page. It was promptly moved to a disambiguation page by a regular editor of that page.

A search for the string "band see" (as would be found in the string "for the xxxx band, see...") reveals numerous pages on which the top of the page contains what is basically an advertisment for an aspiring band. It's my proposal that a policy ought to be implemented regarding this use of the "see also" section at the top of pages. In a nutshell, Small commercial ventures shouldn't be benefiting from increased publicity by adding information about their company to the tops of pages about things which are much more frequently searched.

Here's a sample of what I mean based on the above search:

Edaham (talk) 02:21, 19 December 2016 (UTC)

Meh. If a band is not notable, its article should be deleted. If a band is notable, the article should be retained. Hatnote policy is all about making sure that users find wikipedia articles. I find your 'unwarranted enrichment' argument mostly specious, and see it as the thin end of an unwanted wedge. For after you've consigned bands that you do not rate to the trash-can, what will you come for next? Besides which, "Rabbit_(zodiac)", "Lethargy", "Pet_peeve". Really? They're hardly our most sought-out articles. --Tagishsimon (talk) 02:39, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
thanks for your quick reply. The aim of raising this subject is to address whether or not wikipedia is being used as a promotional tool through this practice and preventing it if it is. further to this discussion I've added a section to an old discussion on "see alsos" here: . My suggetion (as shown on the rings of saturn page) is that a disambiguation link is preferable to a see also in many cases. many thanks again! Edaham (talk) 02:49, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
The fundamental of your proposal is that we make value judgements on hatnotes. That's completely antithetical to Wikipedia's ethos. Whether there should be a direct link or a disambig page is discussed at Wikipedia:Disambiguation#Disambiguation page or hatnotes?. --Tagishsimon (talk) 03:10, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
That's really helpful thanks for those links. I just read about what a "hatnote" is, and there are some policies in place already regarding proper use of see alsos in this context. I haven't really made a proposal yet, beyond suggesting that the current situation deserves some scrutiny and discussion. Regarding what you said about "Value judgements" I don't think having a "disambiguation page" rather than a "see also" shows an intent to detract value from an alternative usage of a subject's title. The examples I gave were merely the first three examples I found by performing the suggested search. There's lots of others. Some seem more legitimate than others. By not addressing this problem, it may be that aspiring artists have found a loophole through which they can gain publicity through wikipedia. However, having read the links you directed me to, I can see your point and understand what areas of my original post you take issue with. Do you consider the discussion closed for the time being?Edaham (talk) 03:29, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
Hatnotes to minor articles are often removed from articles on significant topics. The issue raised in the OP is correctly handled in the article because Rings of Saturn has a hatnote to a disambiguation page. The article should not have a hatnote to a minor band such as Rings of Saturn (band). The other examples are unclear because the articles are minor. Johnuniq (talk) 03:32, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
Agree, the cited examples confuse the issue. There's a note on wp:hatnote which states that the alternate page to which the article links should be something that the user may reasonably have been searching for. Based on this criteria I think it is no problem to replace see alsos with disambiguation pages, if the alternate usage(s) is/are of lesser note. A disambiguation page seems to be precicely the place to state "the thing you searched for may have other intended meanings", without unduly promoting what those meanings are on the page.Edaham (talk) 08:33, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
Generally speaking, wikilinks should not be considered to imply promotion, they're simply navigational aids because we can't have articles with identical titles, for technical reasons. If there is only one ambiguous topic then a hatnote is the proper way to handle navigational ambiguity. Disambiguation pages are required when there are many ambiguous topics (see WP:TWODABS). But no, hatnotes should not be removed because of the possibility of having promotional intent; all we need to do is make sure that there is a genuine ambiguity (it would not meet this standard to put a hatnote to Rings of Saturn (band) from say Venus, or The Beatles) and that it is worded neutrally (not "for the super-awesome best death core band EVAR see Rings of Saturn (band)"). Ivanvector (Talk/Edits) 14:17, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
I think it does depend on the number of alternative topics at the same title. If there is only 2 topics - the non-band, and the band, a 2-item disambig page is overkill, and a hatnote works. I can see the argument being presented here that if the non-band topic is so significant, and the band itself is a small, local but otherwise notable band it could be seen as promotional, but this is just the nature of the fact we can't host topics of the exact same name on WP. I do not see such hatnotes as promotion in this case.
On the other hand, in a case where there may be 4+ uses of a topic so that a disambiguation page is necessary, two of them (A + B) significant and the others (including the band) are not so much; in this case, I can see a hatnote that tries to squeeze the band in before the disambiguation page as clearly a problem. Here, this is where the hat note should have A having a hat to B and the disambig page, B a hat to A and the disambig page, and the band and other pages on the disambig page only.
Basically, there's no firm answer, but I would say that if there's enough naming conflict to require a disambig page, these small bands should only be listed there. But in the case of only 2 or 3 topics at a name, its less a problem. --MASEM (t) 15:07, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
You are right. If there's only one alternative use it's hard to warrant a disam' page. Based on my original issue this: - is a good example of something which deserves some prompt attention. I should make it clear, I've noticed a lot of situations in which musical acts exemplify the practice of less significant subjects hatnoting highly significant ones, which is why I brought up that example, but I have no vendetta against bands or any other specific category for that matter. It just happens to be something that I've noticed throughout wikipedia's history. I agree with this "Generally speaking, wikilinks should not be considered to imply promotion".Edaham (talk) 04:52, 20 December 2016 (UTC)
100% complete agree; the only two hat links for Death should be to the disambiguation pages; there is no reason to call out the musical aspects (even the term "Death metal"). The band hatnotes there seem extremely forced. --MASEM (t) 05:06, 20 December 2016 (UTC)
editedEdaham (talk) 09:08, 20 December 2016 (UTC)
We have no objection to Wikipedia being used as a promotional tool, provided only that our policies are followed.
All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 18:18, 27 December 2016 (UTC).
Wikipedia is not a soapbox or means of promotion Edaham (talk) 06:24, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
Please do not strike my content, instead use your words to express your disagreement. WP:IS NOT is one of the most misunderstood (and poorly written) policies. We have articles on every album by Madonna. This "promotes" Madonna. We do not care, the content meets our criteria. We do not have articles on Edaham's demo tapes, because they do not meet our notability criteria. We do not care that such articles would be promotional, we care that the subject is non-notable.
All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 21:41, 28 December 2016 (UTC).
Words to express my disagreement: The reason your post was struck out is that if an editor who came across it while searching this topic, particularly the way you phrased it using "we", might see it as an endorsement of Wikipedia being used promotionally. Please read the remainder of this discussion. It is about the practice of smaller or less notable subjects gaining notability through adding info to hatnotes - not Madonna. I've found and edited a few instances of editors using these navigation tools to promote awareness of their subject by linking to them from unrelated but similarly named articles. I've accordingly opened a discussion. Whatever the outcome of the discussion I'd like it to be clear that hatnotes are for making wikipedia easier to navigate and not for promoting things, as has been the case on several pages. If it is your intent to argue the case that Wikipedia does not take issue with people using any of its pages as a promotional tool, you will have a hard time unless you can first convince the editors of the WP:NOT page to first ammend their policy on that page. It is also possible (according to wp:hatnote) for a subject to be notable ehough to warrant a wikipedia article, but not require a direct mention in the hat note of another page. (i.e. it warrants inclusion if a user might reasonably be expected to have been searching for the alternate use)Edaham (talk) 01:36, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
Please stop talking utter rubbish. In no way does wikipedia or the majority of its editors endorse or support its use as a 'promotional tool'. It covers encyclopedic material. If your statement is to be taken seriously, articles on eating disorders promote bulimia, anorexia etc. Only in death does duty end (talk) 22:21, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
There's a difference between "endorse and support" and "allow". For example Wikipedians in Residence undoubtedly promote the institutions they are at, by improving coverage of their work and collections. Women in Red promotes the coverage of female scientists. But the point is that this is all valid content, when we dig into the putative motivations of editors we enter dangerous territory.
It is certainly worth reminding contributors of WP:COI and WP:UNDUE, but it is also good to remember WP:AGF.
All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 10:42, 31 December 2016 (UTC).
10:42, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
  • I think that research would probably show that in a high proportion of cases the "See also" or "About" template leading to the band (or other subsidiary meaning of the article title) is not added by anyone with any interest in the topic but by a WikiGnome who has come across the article while Stub-sorting or similar and checked to see whether a title with bracketed disambiguation had the necessary link from either a hatnote on the Primary Topic article, or a disambiguation page, and found it lacking. I do it all the time - vast numbers of articles get created by editors who don't realise that inward navigation links are needed.
Out of curiosity I looked at Rings of Saturn and found that the band's article was created on 12 August 2012 by a named editor, and after various other edits an IP made several edits to the band's page and added the hatnote to the astronomy article on 26 November 2012.
Hatnotes like this are an essential part of Wikipedia navigation and nothing to do with promotion. There have been instances where people have felt that a hatnote added distasteful or irreverent content to an article - I see to remember such discussions at Santorum and Book of Mormon, in both of which cases enough other entries were found (created?) to justify a dab page to which the offending links could be moved. PamD 19:49, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
That was really cool of you to do that research. It prompted me to look back on a few other entries I had a problem with and there does seem to be grounds to believe that many of these entries are the result of wikignomes. What you are basically describing then is a "goodfaith" version of how some hat notes came to be the way they did rather than the ill intentions I incorrectly assumed. I must restate my point regarding poilicy though because I think it is being missed: When hat notes to insignificant items appear at the top of pages about important things it looks like (however they got there) that they were put there by people trying to put their name out. That's what the casual observer sees. It looks really tacky and makes Wikipedia seem like a wacky fun place where any urban dictionary editor can hang their pet version of a term or word. It's not how or why the articles came to look the way they did - it's what they end up looking like once the work is done, which needs attention.
I would like the policy to clarify:
  • use dab page for all alternate uses of a word, even if there's only one, except:
  • in cases where - like in the death article - an easily confused spelling like dyeing / dying might reasonably be assumed to have led a user to the page in error.
  • in cases where - like Madonna - both articles on the musician and the religious figure carry relatively equal weight.
And that citing these policies is grounds for an editor, gnome or otherwise to have reason to modify a hatnote.
once more - the articles really look silly and the format and presentation of the page on Wikipedia a bit silly and unprofessional when there's a bizarre and obscure "see also" hung at the top of it and linking to something which looks as if it's attention grabbing/click baiting.
And lastly, if a consensus can be agreed upon, I'd like to edit the page on hatnotes and other relevant areas to clarify this. I understand that this is quite a large change in policy but I think the effect on general presentation and the seriousness of wikipedia as an encyclopedia would be worth it.Edaham (talk) 01:05, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
Please slow down. You appear to be an editor who has made just 112 edits, and you want to change long-established policies in English Wikipedia because you don't like seeing a band listed at the top of an article on a "serious" topic. There are policies, guidelines, consensus, as a result of many discussions over many years, which lead to the current rule: If there are only two topics to which a given title might refer, and one is the primary topic, then a disambiguation page is not needed—it is sufficient to use a hatnote on the primary topic article, pointing to the other article. - see WP:TWODABS. You believe that our articles look "silly": the established consensus is that these articles are the best way to help readers get to the information they want.
Looking at your 3 examples Pet peeve now leads to a dab page (I see a link to the band "Pet Hate" was removed as "not ambiguous"); Rabbit (Zodiac) has a perfectly sensible "redirect" hatnote for the two other senses of Year of the Rabbit; Lethargy is fine. PamD 09:52, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose policy change for this. 1) The consensus against two-entry dabs is stronger than any argument that has been presented here. 2) A policy of allowing hatnotes for some secondary topics and not for others (all of which are presumably notable enough to have articles in the first place) would require 2a) an entirely new set of guidance (independent of the established notability guidance) for determining which is which, none of which has been proposed, 2b) all for the dubious benefit of adding an extra click to get the reader to their intended target, 2c) in the name of avoiding a possible appearance of promotion that we don't even agree exists. Thus, the proposal hits points 3, 4, 5, and 7 of WP:MIAB. The proposer should not feel bad, but I agree with PamD that its wise to get a bit more experience before tackling a proposal of this scale. —swpbT 14:24, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
not a problem guys. Thanks for taking the time to review this subject. I should mention to Pam that I have been editing wikipedia since 2005, when I moved to China. It hasn't always been possible to log in in a normal manner due to sporadic web censorship and I've long since given up trying establish a long term recognizable persona here (this is the first time I have felt compelled to involve myself in policy though). The examples I gave were merely the three at the top of the list when performing a suggested search. There's plenty more. The problem I've been trying to raise doesn't just apply to bands and I probably should have thought more about the title of this thread before I opened it. I feel that the issues I have raised have been ubiquitous since the formation of the encyclopedia, setting it apart from more closed source academic volumes. I don't claim to be able to solve the issue single handedly because that would be silly. I would like people who took part in this discussion to keep the points raised in mind though. I'm sure Pam, a librarian by trade, would understand the uninvited irony I'm feeling if someone was looking round one of her asiles at a sign that read, "Norse legend (for the Scandinavian grind core band, please refer to the music section). On that light hearted note let me say thanks again - I might try and tackle this subject when I have built up the necessary level of understanding of the administrative workings of Wikipedia.Edaham (talk) 21:19, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

On WP:ACCURACY, WP:NPOV, & Photographs vs Paintings & Drawings

The following discussion is an archived record of a request for comment. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion. A summary of the conclusions reached follows.
I'm closing this early per WP:SNOW. The proposal is unsuccessful. The community rejects the assumption that all photographs would necessarily be better lead images than paintings or drawings. The consensus is instead that lead images should be chosen on a case-by-case basis by consensus following discussion on each article's talk page. Respectfully, Mz7 (talk) 03:31, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

nutshell: because a photograph of the subject of an article is more accurate than a painting or a drawing (& because the lede image is the first thing most readers will see); (when they are available) photographs should generally be used in preference to paintings or drawings, as the primary (i.e.: lead) illustration of the subject, in an article.

(background) I am getting extremely tired of having the same fights, with the same people, again, & Again, & AGAIN; mostly on the same few articles, year in & year out. So let's "have it out" once & for all; full-on rfc & everybody is invited.


That, as per the requirements of WP:Accuracy and WP:NPOV,

When it comes to "real-world", i.e.: non-fictional subjects; such as history, biographies, etc.

When photographic images illustrating the subject of the article, which are of acceptable (article-space useable) quality exist, & are available to use (re: copyright, etc.),

& are not in (serious) dispute over matters of factual accuracy (such as identify of the subject, date, or alterations to the image),

the use of such photographic images should be given preference and precedence over the use of paintings, drawings, and other suchlike "interpretive" artworks,

as a/the primary illustration of the subject in articles;

with allowance for obvious exceptions such as maps, plans, diagrams, etc.; as per common sense and the practical requirements of the subject.

NOTE THAT: this in no way prohibits the inclusion in the article of creative artworks depicting or relevant to the subject, as best suits the article; "history of", "in art", "official portraits", etc.

Merely that, as primary &/or lead image on the article, preference should be given to photographic images accurately depicting the likeness of the subject, WHEN THEY ARE AVAILABLE, over creative/interpretive artworks.

For reasons of accuracy, better NPOV, & "best practices" as historical documentation of the subject, and wp:style.

Not to mention basic common sense.

Lx 121 (talk) 15:32, 26 December 2016 (UTC)


Hi Lx 121. Which few articles are you referring to? Are their talk pages insufficient to resolve this issue? --MZMcBride (talk) 08:34, 27 December 2016 (UTC)

Apeears to be John C. Calhoun --MASEM (t) 09:12, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
'hi back, & NO; i opened this to settle general policy on the matter, NOT to "win" on any particular page; but to settle the matter as a point of wp standards & practices, to end the repeated battles over this (year in & year out); mainly (but not exclusively) on 19th-century biographies. Lx 121 (talk) 05:27, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose - While a photo is usually going to be preferable to another representation, it's far too context-dependent to make it a rule beyond what guidelines already exist. In the John C. Calhoun article, for example, Jdcrutch made the point that "The Brady photo shows Calhoun in the last year of his life, as he was dying of tuberculosis, not as the vibrant, charismatic man who nearly became president of the United States". Others may hold a different opinion, but that's a perfectly sensible argument against displaying the photo at the very top. It looks like OP also raised this issue at Talk:Andrew Jackson. As a side note, since I see it's a theme throughout these pages, using a text formatting that uses the maximum possible space on the page may do the opposite of what you intend it to do. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 15:19, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment: i'm going for the general policy here, but since you bring it up -- we have several photographs of the man, taken over a ten year period, from ~1840-50 to choose from.
tangentially; the brady photograph you referred to was apparently used as the model for the sculpture of calhoun in the national sculpture gallery. so it seems like people were "ok" with it, at the time.
Lx 121 (talk) 05:27, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose As over-simplified. Any subject whose lifespan crosses the early years of the development of photography (say, 1835-1880) will have a possibility, perhaps even a likelihood, that a photograph from that era is not truly representative. The Calhoun example Rhododendrites mentions is a good example, as is James K. Polk. Both men were photographed towards the end of their lives. In one case, it may be representative of their prime, in another, not. The only way to approach this is on a case-by-case basis on individual talk pages instead of creating or inventing a new rule. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 20:09, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment -- how is a portrait photograph of a person "not truly representative" of WHAT THE PERSON ACTUALLY LOOKED LIKE?
"in their prime" is vague, subjective, & nnpov.
when the article is a biography of a person, our job as encyclopedists & historians, is to describe that person accurately.
when it comes to SHOWING WHAT THE PERSON LOOKED LIKE, WP requires that we do so asaccurately & as npov as possible.
photographs do that better than paintings or drawings.
so, when we have a photograph of the subject; that accurately & clearly shows what the look like; we use the photograph.
  • Oppose - This should only be applied to a high-quality photograph, and only if it's truely representative of the subject for its most significant period (not a question of when it was taken, but of the lack of significant change in the subject in between). A photo of a very sick person is probably not a good representation of a person who is notable for his/her active time (see Calhoun example), nor would a photo of a child be representative for a person who became notable as an adult. עוד מישהו Od Mishehu 04:40, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment: people do not usually age backwards, such that we only have photographs of them as a baby; "Benjamin Buttons is a fictional character.
in the real world, most people age forwards, & if there are photos of them in infancy, there are also photos of them as adults; particularly if they meet wp:notability requirements.
&, as above, our job is wp:'accuracy & wp:npov; NOT nnpov "hagiography", or "historiography".
a biography is an article about a PERSON. our job is to show what this person REALLY looked like; not grand elegy.
& calhoun was not "sick & dying" all the way from 1840-1850. he was an active, serving united states senator during that time. & a public figure aka "celebrity".
Lx 121 (talk) 05:27, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Support generally. Though it's not clear where this language is intended to be captured and the wording is not in the form of a guideline or for MOS:Images, I agree that photos should generally get valued above over created images. A photo is objective (WP:Accuracy and WP:Neutral) evidence with a provenance of who took it and where and when, and that should give it some edge in preference and precedence. Photos or created images can also get prominence if they are iconic in history, or are 'official' in some way, or help show explanatory highlights. But a created image just isn't often going to overcome the inherent edge of photos. While I'd accept a powerpoint-diagram to explain the pieces or mechanics of something, I would expect the lead image to be a photo. Cheers. Markbassett (talk) 04:54, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment; was trying to put my proposal in "formal language", but i can give it to you in a "nutshell":
nutshell: because a photograph of the subject of an article is more accurate than a painting or a drawing (& because the lede image is the first thing most readers will see); photographs should generally be used in preference to paintings or drawings, as the primary illustration of the subject.
Lx 121 (talk) 05:49, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose I'm having trouble believing that a formal portrait-made-with-paint is always less "accurate" than a formal portrait-made-with-film. Sure, there could be some intentional exaggeration by the painter, but have you never heard of photo manipulation? Or even trick photography? The idea that a photographer could adjust photos to make the client happier is as old as cameras. You don't actually get inaccurate information by looking at official US presidential portraits. WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:21, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
*comment*: hi; i addressed your point about photographic alterations here
"& are not in (serious) dispute over matters of factual accuracy (such as identify of the subject, date, or alterations to the image),"
will get you some examples for "official portraits" vs reality; but:
"official white house portraits have 'no special "super-legitimacy" @ wikipedia as per wp:npov
no more than any OTHER country's "official portraits" would.
head of state or head of government, or not.
we don't even do that for "foreign rulers" like.
& nobody here is seriously arguing that we should give preference to "official portraits" of mao, stalin, hilter, the kim dynasty of north korea, ayatollah khomeini, or anybody else we would consider a "bad guy".
tl,dr: there is no policy anywhere on wikipedia giving any special preference to "official portraits".
nor should there be.
that would violate wp:accuracy & wp:npov
Lx 121 (talk) 05:40, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
This proposal alleges that there is something inaccurate in this portrait.  What is the supposed inaccuracy?
I don't feel like you've considered all the potential issues here. You seem to have this personal belief that any formal portrait made with film is "more accurate" than any formal portrait made with paint, regardless of any any all other considerations. And since you know WP:The Truth, nothing else seems to matter to you.
Perhaps as a result of your fixed belief, you seem to have missed my point. So let me ask it somewhat more concretely: Next to this comment, you will see a formal portrait of Jimmy Carter. What's inaccurate in this image? WhatamIdoing (talk) 05:56, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment*-- that is a painting of jimmy carter; it is a hand made drawing-with-a-brush.
& that cute little essay carries no weight as an arguement.
there is a difference between "knowing the truth" & "having the facts on my side".
& i am still waiting for your thesis, proving how paintings are "better"? or even "just as good"
as per WP:Accuracy & WP:NPOV
i've proved my thesis; so where is yours?
Lx 121 (talk) 11:47, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
I'm still trying to figure out whether your thesis is valid. You have claimed that a painting is inaccurate – not just better or worse, but "inaccurate". So, there's a painting. Where's the inaccuracy? WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:29, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
& while we are at it, here have these links too truth & fact. Lx 121 (talk) 11:50, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
this is a photograph of jimmy carter; an exact record of the lightwaves present in the room, & objectively recorded by physics & a mechanical device. it is also higher resolution than a handmade painting, by orders of magnitude
& again "official white house portraits have no "special" status when selecting lede image on biographies @ wikipedia. we don't do "official"; whether us gov or anybody else's. as per wp:npov.
Lx 121 (talk) 06:15, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
I agree that photographs are recorded mechanically. That doesn't mean that they are necessarily accurate records of the lightwaves present in a room (see: photo manipulation, re-touching, color adjustments, varied printing techniques, etc.) It additionally doesn't mean that they have higher resolution than a painting. The resolution on some photos (especially older ones) is very low – and the resolution on some paintings is extraordinarily high. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:29, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

your logic is fail -- all of them accurately record the lightwaves in the room; @ different resolutions, & in the last case, as monochrome.

more to the point, ALL OF THEM are more accurate (& more npov) than a hand-drawing or painting.

Lx 121 (talk) 12:46, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

No. You can't have it both ways. Either Carter's jacket is "accurately" bright blue, and the dark jacket is objectively wrong, or it's "accurately" navy and the bright blue one is objectively wrong. The "wavelenths in the room" that you were talking about where not simultaneously both colors. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:02, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
AND a painting is still "a drawing by hand, with a brush", subjectively created by the painter; & a photograph is still an objective record of the lightwaves, a "frrozen moment' in time.
are you seriously going to pursue this line of arguement? because, the daguerreotypists beat the portrait painters on this one, by about 1850.
also; you will note that when we sent the apollo astronauts to the moon, or anything else science-related, we use cameras; not painting sets.
'again, see wp:accuracy & wp:npov
Lx 121 (talk) 12:46, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
This is not true. The scientific study of anatomy is filled with artists – still, even though all the anatomists also have access to cameras. Gray's Anatomy is drawings rather than photos, because any given sample may have unusual quirks, but a skilled and trained artist can create a representative composite drawing. Botanical illustration follows the same pattern: you get more scientific and educational value out of one perfectly representative drawing than out of a photograph of any single individual. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:18, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

JimmyCarterPortrait.jpg Official presidential portrait of Jimmy Carter (by Herbert E. Abrams, 1982).jpg

see the difference yet? Lx 121 (talk) 06:22, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

jimmy @ 5 megs in b&w

Jimmy Carter head shot - NARA - 175374.tif

jimmy @ 16 megs; you can count his freckles, which are not shown in the painting. real people have freckles, & wrinkles & other little details & "imperfections", that hired portrait painters do not include; for reasons of flattery or simply because it's too much work.

James Earl "Jimmy" Carter - NARA - 558522.tif

Clear oppose --I find the scope of the policy too broad to be accepted.I can feel the tediousness of discussing the same issue on multiple talk pages but the issues are widely different on a person-wise basis and encompass a magnitude of issues.Light❯❯❯ Saber 05:54, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment* -- wp:accuracy & wp:npov are not "subjective opinions". what non-fiction subjects, about physical objects in the real world, where we have photographs of the subject are better served by using a painting or a drawing as lede? because, excluding maps & graphical designs like flag designs (which are technically a design concept, rather than a specific object) i really can't think of anything. & a satellite image with outlines is often a better lede than a standard map Lx 121 (talk) 06:05, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

a comparison, of drawings & paintings vs photography (in-progress); click to enlarge

here are the presidents (USA), for whom we have both paintings & photographs; a number of whom i've had to fight "painting vs photo" battles over

a number of which i've had to fight more than once

& since somebody else mentioned john calhoun, here are the several PHOTOGRAPHS of the man that we have to choose from,

& none of them are "acceptable" to the persons i am debating the matter with; who replaced the long-standing photograph of the subject, with the painting in the next gallery.

& here is the PAINTING that keeps getting put in place of the photograph as lede. & btw, the painting was created in the same era as the photographs; & the artist may very well have used photographs as models in making it.


Now, when you looked @ all those images (UN-thumbnailed/full-sized), did anyone have trouble telling which was a photograph of a real person, & which was a photograph of a painting or a drawing?


if there is anybody here who can't tell the difference, please, speak up.

Lx 121 (talk) 07:17, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

Sure, I can tell the difference: in the photos, Calhoun is "inaccurately" shown as having gray eyes and gray lips, and in the painting, he is "accurately" shown as having blue eyes and pink lips. But you seem to have decided that it's the one with accurate colors that should be removed on grounds of being "inaccurate". This is why I'm trying to get you to explain exactly what exactly makes you believe that all paintings are always "inaccurate" (as opposed to the many other potential objections, e.g., intentionally flattering) but that a hand-re-touched portrait made on film (nearly every portrait you've posted here has been manually manipulated by the photographer) is always "accurate".
I might have a little sympathy if you said that formal portraits, regardless of medium, are too staged or too flattering to representative of a person's everyday existence and are therefore automatically non-neutral. I might even have some sympathy if you said that you wanted to combat body image issues by showing actresses with all their freckles and wrinkles, or something like that. I'm not saying that I'd buy those arguments, but I'd at least be sympathetic with them.
Instead you've decided to say that photos are automatically accurate (at least until someone shows you a source that talks about how much it was re-touched afterwards) and that all paintings (including unflattering ones) are automatically inaccurate, and you can't even explain where the inaccuracy lies – especially when we remember that fine wrinkles and tiny freckles will not be visible at the 240-pixel size that readers will actually see. I'm just not buying that. Hand-made portraits made with paint are no less accurate than hand-re-touched portraits made with film. They're a bit different in what they emphasize, but neither is wrong. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:57, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose This is at best an issue that will affect a small number of biographies and can be resolved on individual article talkpages. There will be edge cases where a painted portrait is preferable to the *available* photographs, and this raises more problems than it solves. Only in death does duty end (talk) 09:20, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment* -- ok, so give me an example of an "edge case"? also; & with all due respects, you are radically underestimating the number articles it affects, & the number of times it has to be fought out, on the same articles; over & over, & over again... Lx 121 (talk) 10:01, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
Given I know how many biographies there are. I am not underestimating at all. Perhaps I should have said 'percentage' rather than imply total. And if you find you keep having to fight over an issue, perhaps find something better to do. Essentially you want a policy to state 'Photographs should always be used where available' which would be roundly ignored IAR in a lot of cases. Or would result in a consensus on the talkpage to remove bad photos outright. I suggest you read all the oppose opinions above and go away and think really hard about how consensus works on wikipedia. Only in death does duty end (talk) 10:08, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment* i did; & what i'm saying is: 'if the wikipedia community & "quality control proccess" cannot get it together enough to agree that photographs are better than paintings & drawings to show what somebody looks like on a biography of that person; then WIKIPEDIA IS BROKEN'
because the stupid arguements i keep having to fight out about this, again & again, page by page, year after year, make a joke out of wp:accuracy & wp:npov.
& if the community is not serious about these things, & not serious about the QUALITY OF THE WORK, then i can stop trying.
i'll go knit, somebody call me when we reach a tipping point? because, i've already reached mine.
Lx 121 (talk) 10:44, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
I do recommend that you stop trying to push your unusual idea of "accuracy" on this subject, and find something else to do. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:57, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

actually; there is also the problem that decision-making on a particular article can be dominated by a handful of people with a "dedicated interest" & strong opinions about the subject. regardless of policy, & impervious to dispute, short of arbcom or a massive community intervention.

& i am tired of dealing with situations like that, thanks.

i have had to change back biography photos so many times, on so many articles.

& argue with mostly the same people; mostly about accuracy & npov.

then go back 6 months or a year later & do it all over again.

& again.

& again.

if we can't get a basic, simple rule like "photographs are better than paintings" for showing what somebody looks like, in a biography;

then somebody else can deal with it.

or not.

but i thought wp:accuracy & wp:npov were supposed to mean something?

i also thought the goal was to make wikipedia a quality information resource?

if i'm wrong about that; i've got other things i can spend my time & efforts on.

Lx 121 (talk) 10:31, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

  • Oppose A bad photograph might be worse than a good painting and so each case has to be judged on its merits. Note that there are lots of technical issues with photographs – focus, lighting, makeup, composition, &c. – and so photography is commonly considered an artform. Image processing is a major factor too – airbrushing, editing, filters, &c. For example, see File:Elizabeth Teissier.jpg for a posed picture whose accuracy is debatable. Andrew D. (talk) 11:19, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
1st howso "debatable"? you need to specify what's "wrong" the with accuracy of the likeness.
2nd so are you saying that a painting of the subject is better for wp:accuracy &/or wp:npov?
Lx 121 (talk) 13:00, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
  • comment 3 things:
1. please provide at least one example, where we have an ADEQUATE photograph available
adequate - as defined in the original proposal
& you feel that "a good painting would be better", as per WP:Accuracy & WP:NPOV?
because i can't think of any.
2. the point is that photography is MORE ACCURATE than a painting or a drawing; whether it is "an artform" or not, is irrelevant. what matter is accuracy.
3. i have addressed the concerns about altered photographs TWICE in the above discussion.
i will c&p them here:
from the original proposal
When photographic images illustrating the subject of the article, which are of acceptable (article-space useable) quality exist, & are available to use (re: copyright, etc.),

& are not in (serious) dispute over matters of factual accuracy (such as identify of the subject, date, or alterations to the image),

& from a previous conversation above^:
  • comment*: hi; i addressed your point about photographic alterations here

"& are not in (serious) dispute over matters of factual accuracy (such as identify of the subject, date, or alterations to the image),"

Lx 121 (talk) 11:40, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Lx 121 should please read WP:BLUDGEON and WP:NOTLAW. He should then please remain silent in his own interest as his manner of presenting his case seems counter-productive. Some technical advice such as WP:THREAD or WP:INDENT may also help in improving on his idiosyncratic use of white space. My !vote stands and I'm putting pages like Calhoun on my watchlist. Andrew D. (talk) 12:22, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
Oppose I agree w Andrew D. I reject assumption that photo "is more accurate than a painting ". People in 19th century actually were in color and so B&W is ALWAYS less accurate in that regard. compared to 2016 film & 19th century oil painting: 19th century film was poor quality and shifted colors erratically into one shade of grey and then to another, so the top of a coat looked different from the bottom. (the solution was to dress the subject all in black no matter how unusual that was for him.) Lighting was poor and uncontrolled. Lenses were poor quality. Today a photographer takes scores of carefully posed shots and then selects the one best one. 19th century technology was so slow and expensive that only one shot was typical. As for POV that happens when we display a photo of a sick old man [Jackson] for a powerful president. Rjensen (talk) 15:06, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
yes, we all know, from your thesis, how "19th century photographers were hopeless, incompetebnt idiots who were COMPLETELY INCAPABLE of taking a picture.
so, let's just throw out every photograph taken before 1900 & every photograph that is "not in colour", because clearly they are all worthless rubbish, according to your thesis.

here, i'll get you some examples of how uselesss 19th century photographers were.

Lx 121 (talk) 13:00, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

I agree with you, Rjensen. I'm also wondering: Maybe Lx actually means that photographs are more precise than paintings. Accuracy and precision are not synonyms. That would account for his preference for showing immaterial little wrinkles over showing accurate colors. WhatamIdoing (talk) 19:08, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

"accurate colours"? -- ''howso? do you mean "accurate" colour chosen by the artist, then mixed on the pallete, then PAINTED ON? that's some definition of accuracy there! Lx 121 (talk) 13:00, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

Yes, accurate colors, as in "some experienced oil painters can match the color of a dollar bill closely enough to fool an anti-counterfeiting machine" (on color; the rest is much harder). Color matching is easy with paint, if you know what you're doing. I contrast that simplicity with the obvious problems shown above, in which the same photo shows Jimmy Carter wearing noticeably different colors of jackets. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:10, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose This is a complicated issue and it cannot be resolved simply as a preference of yes or no. Instead of trying to summarize the entire complicated issue as "photos are always better" there should be more discussion on a policy page describing the differences, giving examples, and linking to past conversations and precedents. So far as I know, the best discussion on this topic is at Wikipedia:Donated artwork, and what is there does not give a good overview of the conversations to this point.
The reason the conversation comes up repeatedly is because we are not referring back to a common guideline and precedent. Obviously here even in this discussion the conversation is going in more than 10 directions. The proposer wishes to focus on scientific accuracy but apparently this is not a priority for others, so there needs to be more acknowledgement of what the priorities actually are that meet everyone's expectations. Blue Rasberry (talk) 15:17, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
the issue here is that a mechanical-engineering attitude wants to replace historical judgment with a light meter. The great 20c portrait photographer Yousuf Karsh (who did B&W shots with amazingly complex lighting) is quoted in his article explaining what historians want to see in Wikipedia: "Within every man and woman a secret is hidden, and as a photographer it is my task to reveal it if I can. The revelation, if it comes at all, will come in a small fraction of a second with an unconscious gesture, a gleam of the eye, a brief lifting of the mask that all humans wear to conceal their innermost selves from the world. In that fleeting interval of opportunity the photographer must act or lose his prize." 19th century technology made that goal feasible for the portrait artist spending hours and days with the subject and very difficult for the photographer with his crude equipment. Rjensen (talk) 15:28, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
I do not disagree. I just think that repeatedly every few months from now the issue will come up and need to be untangled until comments like yours make it to central page describing the best practice. I wish I could respond to this RfC by referring to a guideline but none exists and I think the time is ripe for anyone to start one. Blue Rasberry (talk) 14:38, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
I'm having difficulty conceptualizing what such a guideline would look like, since it really is a not-a-guideline. I can see the "In a nutshell section" saying little more than "The guideline is that there is no guideline; come to consensus on the talk page." While that would have short-circuited this discussion, is it a necessary permanent thing? I'm not sure. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 14:54, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
There's WP:IUP where I think advice along these lines should be added. That is, when given two or more choices of free images to use for a person, editors should come to consensus on the subject's talk page of which image should be used as the lede image, along with noting that the non-used images still can be present in the article. I would at least also add that in cases of people that were notable for being in a public position (like a politican, actor, or athlete), we do generally prefer the image of them "at their prime" even if it not as functionally accurate for the media as another image, while we are less concerned for people that were generally not in the public eye. --MASEM (t) 15:05, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
I'm sensing a rather large snowball has started rolling here so maybe you're right and it's time to AN/RFC this and add that there. Something like, "3.1.1 ===Most Prominent Image Content===" and your suggested text, maybe? Obviously after ironing it out on the talk page there. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 15:17, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose Lx 121 has done everything wrong in trying to make the case. Beyond the fact that photographs can in many ways be just as artistically shot, I would rather Wikipedians curate which images we present rather than mechanistically select a photo instead of a painting or drawing. NPOV isn't much of a policy, anyway. Chris Troutman (talk) 16:18, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose Consensus should decide which of multiple free images to use for a biographical article if that option is available, as long as it does not mis-represent the subject (which none of the paintings or photographs do). Consider a counter-example of a sports figure from the 40-50s, who we have two copyright-free photos to select from: a sepia-toned, grainy one of him that clearly shows him during his sport, and one taken of him "today" with a digital camera, all bald, hunched over, and clearly well past retirement. While the newer photo is more "accurate" considering the photographic technology, we would more than likely use the sepia-toned image as a more recognizable image of the person in their heyday. The alternate photo can be used in the body of the article. Same with these painting-vs-photo; if the painting is more representative of the person during their notable time, then that's the better image. I would also strongly advise LX 121 to read how actually use talk pages, as the white-space extended, excessive use of italics and bold, and other approaches is very off-putting and unlikely going to help convince editors to debate with them. --MASEM (t) 16:34, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
for your example, you could try arguing fair use for a better photo, if you really want to push the "in his prime" theory, which is debatable;
but i don't really care whether you use the newer or older photograph; if they are of comparable quality.
or switch the sepia-toning to b&w, that does nothing to alter the photographic information. the original negative was almost certainly b&w to begin with. in terms of photographic technology "sepia toning" is a photo-print developing option; it depends on the paper/technique used in making the print. or, you simple have an old picture that's gone yellow with age.
almost none of the "sepia toned" photographs you will see were actually "photographed" onto a negative with "sepia-toning".
so your example of the sepia-toned photograph is a red herring. & you could debate the merits of b&w vs colour.
it is even more of an irrelevant point; in that the discussion is about THE ACCURACY OF PHOTOGRAPHS VS DRAWING & PAINTINGS"; & that is not "the same as" photo vs painting.
& you are wrong wp:accuracy & wp:npov require us to depict the subject accurately.
in the case of a biography of a person, that means: show ACCURATELY what the person looked like.
choosing an image to "sum up" the person is inherently NNPOV; the job is to show what this person looked like, not to "represent their life".
& as for this point "as long as it does not mis-represent the subject (which none of the paintings or photographs do)" ; go look @ the examples posted.
if you cannot see the dramatic differences in accuracy between the paintings & the photographs, the you actually have a cognitive &/or visual disability; literally, no name-calling, for real & textbook-definable. or a really lousy monitor/screen.
& i'm sorry if you do not like my style of writing; but if people are looking @ the style of formatting, & not the content, in making their decisions, then the point is already lost. Lx 121 (talk) 13:26, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
No, the lede image is to provide an image that can be visually associated with the topic as a guide for memory, not to provide the most accurate image. For example, films use movie posters, businesses use logos, books use book covers, etc. For biographies we want an image that best represents the person in a reasonably accurate manner. We are going to prefer images of lower photographic quality or even paintings and drawings that show that person as they were best remembered rather than more accurate photographs that might be of the person in a less-memorable situation. We're going for the mnemonic aspect of the image, not the accuracy. (Mind you, there are NPOV concerns if we pick an image of several that is clearly non-flattering, but it is not NPOV to debate which image to use if they all avoid this area). Any unselected images can still be used in the body of the article to then show other versions of the same person. --MASEM (t) 14:45, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose, as commented above it does not make sense to impose a preference for one medium over another in this context, rather than leaving it to the editors on each article to determine the most appropriate lead image for that subject on a case-by-case basis. postdlf (talk) 17:04, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
define "most appropriate"? Lx 121 (talk) 13:26, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose The selection of images is based on a number of factors, through a process of consensus. I don't accept that consensus implies a violation of WP:NPOV, that photographs are more verifiable than paintings or drawings or that there is anything particularly special about the image in the lead, if indeed there is one. I am willing to accept that fair use images are usually better than the ones we are using, but that's an argument for another time. There is no agreed-upon set of criteria as to what is a better image. (See, for an example, Talk:Douglas MacArthur/Archive 5#RfC: Should the file for the infobox picture be changed?) Hawkeye7 (talk) 02:53, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Support. From the point of view of the reader we should be concerned with the verisimilitude of the image. The painted image is more subject to tampering than is the photographically-created image. We are trying to create fine-quality articles but the reader's aims are not necessarily the same as our aims. The article isn't meant to be beautiful but to be educational and to present uncorrupted information. When confronted with the choice between the photographic image and the painted image, clear preference should be given to photographically-created images. Bus stop (talk) 18:40, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

Technical issues with 19c photographs

Wikipedia's article on Photographic film helps explain the technical failures of early film & glass plates:

[before 1883] "Early photographic plates and films were usefully sensitive only to blue, violet and ultraviolet light. As a result, the relative tonal values in a scene registered roughly as they would appear if viewed through a piece of deep blue glass. Blue skies with interesting cloud formations photographed as a white blank. Any detail visible in masses of green foliage was due mainly to the colorless surface gloss. Bright yellows and reds appeared nearly black. Most skin tones came out unnaturally dark, and uneven or freckled complexions were exaggerated. Photographers sometimes compensated by adding in skies from separate negatives that had been exposed and processed to optimize the visibility of the clouds, by manually retouching their negatives to adjust problematic tonal values, and by heavily powdering the faces of their portrait sitters." Rjensen (talk) 10:54, 29 December 2016 (UTC)

*comment* -- the article section you quoted is marked as lacking citations.

as a technical matter, it also CANNOT POSSIBLY APPLY uniformly to every photographic technology in existence @ the time.

because there were several completely different techniques of fixing a photographic image by that time; & your uncited quote does not specify WHICH TECHNIQUE it is talking about.

'also all of this does nothing to negate the fact a photographic plate is an ACCURATE RECORD of the lightwaves, taken in at least the megapixel range.

which is FAR beyond what the human eye & hand can create, even IF the artist was an insane savant completely obsessed with exactly tracing the image via a camera obscura.

AND all of your agrument here does NOTHING to explain why you attempted to impose a painting of president William McKinley, taken well after your claimed "magical date" of 1883.

on the other hand IF you want to use that as an argument for "why we need to replace all the photographs of Abraham Lincoln, with your "more accurate" paintings, then by all means, have fun with that.

Lx 121 (talk) 12:06, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

Please stop screwing up the list formatting

Since my previous repairs were reverted, I'm going to make this more obvious: Lx 121, please quit violating WP:LISTGAP in this discussion. WhatamIdoing (talk) 18:21, 28 December 2016 (UTC) '

  • COMMENT* -- i haven't reverted ANYBODY ELSE'S posts (& you can leave mine alone, thanks); but i am reverting the very conventent "collapsing" of my images & ONLY my images, by a user with an opposing viewpoint.

effectively undermining my arguemenmts.

there is NO wp to support altering ANOTHER USER'S posting, in a discussion in this way; & the cited "reasons" provided by the user responsible do not "create" one.

Lx 121 (talk) 11:51, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

BTW -- that link leads to a guideline, not a policy

& that guideline is specifically for the article-space. (see m.o.s. header)

Lx 121 (talk) 12:49, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

  • WP:TPO applies to all talkpages, which is what this effectively is. Basically if the formatting of your posts is so bad that it irritates other editors to the point where multiple editors are telling you to fix it, then ultimately you *will* end up with your posts being corrected. Learn to format your posts correctly and in a non-annoying way and you will find almost no one will ever touch them. Continue to irritate people, and your posts will continue to get 'fixed'. Only in death does duty end (talk) 12:58, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
  • And your behavior is approaching the type we would start issuing short-term blocks for being disruptive. We expect editors to all work constructively with each other and that does mean following proper talk page conventions to avoid irritating others. (remember there's other topics on this page as well, and your huge mass of images are affecting those editors' discussions too ) --MASEM (t) 14:48, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the debate. Please do not modify it. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Requests for Deleted Articles

There is uncertainty and confusion about the proper forum for requesting copies of articles that have been deleted in accordance with a full deletion discussion at Articles for Deletion. Such requests may be made either by the author or would-be author of an improved version of the article, or by a reviewer at Articles for Creation who needs to compare a draft against the previous article. Some editors think that the proper place for requests is Requests for Undeletion, but some think that such requests are better made at Deletion Review. In looking carefully at the headers for the two boards, it appears that REFUND is correct, because it says:

This page is also intended to serve as a central location to request that deleted content be userfied, restored as a draft or emailed to you so the content can be improved upon prior to re-insertion into the mainspace

However, some editors think that Deletion Review is the place for such requests. First, am I correct that REFUND is the correct place for such requests? Second, perhaps, if so, in the list of reasons why Deletion Review should not be used, there should be an entry for requests to restore deleted articles to draft or user space (use REFUND instead). Robert McClenon (talk) 18:47, 28 December 2016 (UTC)

Is there a reason to limit requests to one place? Blueboar (talk) 11:25, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
No, if it is the intention that requests for copies of deleted articles may be made in either place. There simply has to be a clearly agreed way to request articles that were deleted by AFD, either to improve them, or for review by reviewers. Robert McClenon (talk) 21:49, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
Another avenue that has been used is for an editor to contact the admin who deleted the article, requesting that a copy of the deleted material be provided for review or as a new starting point. Is this, in fact, no longer an appropriate route? --User:Ceyockey (talk to me) 01:49, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
I think the key point is "articles that have been deleted in accordance with a full deletion discussion" at AFD.
There's a spectrum of situations that ranges from uncontroversial PRODs and CSDs (e.g., {{db-short}}) to hotly contested AFDs. In broad theory, you get a copy of a page that was uncontroversially deleted by asking the admin who deleted it, and you go to REFUND if that admin isn't handy. Similarly, you go to DRV if it's a hotly contested AFD. And if your request falls somewhere in between, then you go wherever you want, and the admins involved will redirect your request if necessary.
The general principle behind dividing these is that we want to reduce the bureaucratic burden on people. So if nobody's likely to care, then go ask the nearest friendly admin. And if people are likely to create drama over this request, then go to DRV. WhatamIdoing (talk) 02:35, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
but none of this makes it easier for the user to get their requested copy quickly & easily; it reads more like something "kafkaesque". Lx 121 (talk) 21:59, 1 January 2017 (UTC)

Insufficient participation at the (N)OR noticeboard?

I started the discussion about very little participation at Wikipedia:No original research/Noticeboard in WT:NOR and WT:NORN. However, no one showed up. Therefore, I am doing another discussion here to increase awareness on the NOR noticeboard. There have been cases regarding OR determinations, but very little number of people volunteered to interfere. I wonder whether this will end up in the same fate as already forgotten WP:notability/Noticeboard. --George Ho (talk) 02:26, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

Usage of Miles first and Kilometres as supplementary in all British articles

I have been reading many articles on British transport of late on Wikipedia, and I find the lack of consistency in units of measurement in articles very confusing and problematic. I have also seen that the preferred use of measurement to be very subjective within Wikipedia, and subject to very heated debates, see Talk:Edinburgh Trams and Talk:High Speed 2.

With regards to these articles, I am trying to remain as unbiased as possible and not share my personal opinion on the matter. I find it frustrating to read an article such as the London Underground which in one sentence will say ″the Metropolitan eventually extended as far as Verney Junction in Buckinghamshire, more than 50 miles (80 km) from Baker Street and the centre of London" and later on state "London Underground's eleven lines total 402 kilometres (250 mi) in length". Other articles are written solely in Imperial Measures (Chiltern Railways) and others are written solely in Metric (High Speed 1), some articles have supplementary indicators, some do not.

As MOS:UNIT states ″In non-scientific articles relating to the United Kingdom, the primary units for most quantities are metric or other internationally used units, except that:
-UK engineering-related articles, including those on bridges and tunnels, generally use the system of units that the topic was drawn up in (but road distances are given in imperial units, with a metric conversion – see next bullet);
-the primary units for distance/length, speed and fuel consumption are miles, miles per hour, and miles per imperial gallon (except for short distances or lengths, where miles are too large for practical use)″

While many articles use kilometres, and perhaps many of the engineers behind this project do also, there is a propensity for the British to use miles and miles per hour. For the average Brit, one would never use kilometres in a day to day environment. A recent YouGov poll found that 89% of Brits would use miles to estimate a long distance, whereas only 6% would use kilometres.[1] I understand that the metric system may be more practical, but that is not what I wish to debate and I implore any commenters on this to not bring in their personal opinions on which system of measurement is better. I just want what is best for the average reader of Wikipedia, and until the British Government fully implement the Metric System I suggest all distances are kept in Miles and Miles Per Hour.

I propose that editors and contributors put aside their personal preferences so that we can have conformity in all our articles and use Miles (Kilometres). I propose changing MOS:UNIT guidelines to be clearer on the matter, and say something like this:

″In non-scientific articles relating to the United Kingdom, the primary units for most quantities are metric, except that:
-UK engineering-related articles, including those on bridges and tunnels, generally use the system of units that the topic was drawn up in (but distances are given in imperial units, with a metric conversion – see next bullet);
-the primary units for distance/length, speed and fuel consumption are miles, miles per hour, and miles per imperial gallon (except for short distances or lengths, where miles are too large for practical use)″

I appreciate your time and consideration --Alfiecooper (talk) 11:07, 29 December 2016 (UTC)

Comparison with `wdiff`, hopefully correct:
In non-scientific articles relating to the United Kingdom, the primary units for most quantities are metric or other internationally used units, except that:
-UK engineering-related articles, including those on bridges and tunnels, generally use the system of units that the topic was drawn up in (but road distances are given in imperial units, with a metric conversion – see next bullet);
-the primary units for distance/length, speed and fuel consumption are miles, miles per hour, and miles per imperial gallon (except for short distances or lengths, where miles are too large for practical use)
Sladen (talk) 11:40, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
The phrase "or other internationally used units" is there to allow non-SI units where they are standard internationally. Examples are feet for aircraft height, years for periods of time and suchlike.
The issue the user identifies is not so much a problem with the guideline but with some editors who spent many years attempting to create a WP:FAITACCOMPLI of metric-first, by going through articles by the thousand and flipping the units to metric, even where the guideline preferred imperial. This became so disruptive that we now have general sanctions in this area, banning large-scale changes of units on UK-related articles. Point being, even if we change the guideline, we can't implement the change on existing articles.
However, note that the rules requiring conversions between SI, imperial and US customary units on most articles and in most contexts are not so controversial, and I would encourage editors to add such conversions using the {{convert}} template where appropriate. Kahastok talk 12:08, 29 December 2016 (UTC)

We should always quote sources exactly, using whatever units the source used - and then give the alternate measurements in parentheses. We don't need this MoS. --John Maynard Friedman (talk) 13:32, 29 December 2016 (UTC)

You'd then have a ten times more confusing mess of thousands of different units all over the place, which is completely unprofessional and a nonsense. There is absolutely no reason to follow source unit usage. Just because The Economist's style guide likes metric units, and The Daily Telegraph's likes imperial, doesn't mean that either of those will necessarily be suited to Wikipedia, which is a global project, not an insular one. In any case, the present situation is a compromise, devised to ensure a curtailing of the disruption that had been rocking this topic area for quite a while. It has worked well, and the general sanctions have ensured that the disruption has more or less stopped. I see no reason to reopen this wound, until there is an official diktat by the government mandating metric or imperial usage in Britain. RGloucester 13:42, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
The measurement should be added to the article in the units used in the source, and converted using {{Convert}}; the field "|order=flip" can be used to rearrange the display of the units so that miles come first, as is standard for UK articles, even when the measure from the reliable source is in kilometers. PamD 12:21, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
I'd hesitate to say "should". Per WP:CALC, the conversion between measurements is a routine calculation that doesn't need to be explicitly sourced. I have on occasion needed to go into some pretty obscure sections of the convert template to get a correct conversion (see, e.g. Ben Nevis, which is about 1344.5 metres tall; {{convert}} by default will either give you more precision than you want or a wrong conversion). And there is the circumstance where the unit in the source is one you wouldn't otherwise mention. The fact that my source idiosyncratically measures railways in furlongs instead of miles doesn't mean that Wikipedia needs to do likewise.
Plus you probably want to ward off the absurd spectacle of people edit warring over whether the article should say "50 miles (80 km)" ({{convert|50|mi}}) or "50 miles (80 km)" ({{convert|80|km|disp=flip}}). Don't laugh, it has been known. Kahastok talk 12:00, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
Either that or you'd get people choosing the sources based on what units they use - we've seen a lot of that as well.
If a fact on a UK-related article is sourced to the New York Times, that doesn't meant that we write that fact out in American English. If one source uses AD and the next uses CE, we don't randomly switch between systems, sentence to sentence. We don't switch between month-first and day-first date formats depending on the sources used in the article. This is no different. Kahastok talk 12:00, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
John specifically said that articles should "quote sources exactly". I don't see anyone disagreeing with his claim for direct quotations. WhatamIdoing (talk) 16:34, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
Sure, I don't think there's any serious argument that holds that you might change the text of a direct quotation. Similarly if you were quoting the New York Times on a UK-related article, the quote would be in American English, and you wouldn't change that either. Kahastok talk 16:54, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
Although I agree with your general principle, I can't see that there would be 'thousands of different units' [unless we get into weird antique measures like rods, chains, perches and other odd fish]. The proposal flies in the face of all modern engineering practice in the real world and reads to me as another bit of "let's turn back the clock"/'metric martyrs' nonsense.
We could certainly have another year-long 'weights and measures war' but my bet is that we'd end up back at the current policy. So let's just skip the war and keep the policy as it is. --John Maynard Friedman (talk) 12:58, 30 December 2016 (UTC)


  1. ^ "YouGov Survey Results" (PDF). YouGov. Retrieved 29 December 2016. 

How important is verifiability?

I’m having a disagreement with a fellow editor, User:Shaddim, at Talk:Flatpak (and elsewhere), over interpretations of policy and community consensus. The way I see it, policy supports removing unsourced content, and strongly discourages restoring it while leaving it unsourced, and this (I think) is the consensus view. He says the requirement for sources only strictly applies to BLP content and other sensitive content, and calls my removal of unsourced content “excessive,” claiming the WP: links I’ve used to justify my actions do not in fact support my position. We’ve gone back and forth about this, neither of us seeming able to sway the other’s opinion of what the actual consensus is. I’m hoping we can get a (relatively) final answer here. — (talk) 23:17, 10 December 2016 (UTC)

I am no expert on WP policy but I think reading WP:Burden might help. I mainly edit in science areas and would not consider re-entering content without a source if this was the reason the content had been deleted. Hope this helps. DrChrissy (talk) 23:27, 10 December 2016 (UTC)
WP:V is the most important policy on Wikipedia. Reyk YO! 23:33, 10 December 2016 (UTC)
WP:V requires that sources must exist, not that they must be present to avoid blanking. So if you were saying that non-BLP content should be removed for no other reason than that it lacks inline citations, then you are incorrect. From WP:V: "When tagging or removing material for lacking an inline citation, please state your concern that it may not be possible to find a published reliable source for the content, and therefore it may not be verifiable. If you think the material is verifiable, you are encouraged to provide an inline citation yourself before considering whether to remove or tag it." See also policy at WP:PRESERVE ("Preserve appropriate content. As long as any facts or ideas would belong in an encyclopedia, they should be retained in Wikipedia."). Do you think the content you have removed is actually unverifiable? postdlf (talk) 00:14, 11 December 2016 (UTC)
Either I doubt its verifiability or I don’t believe it belongs in an encyclopedia, yes. When I find something germane that is unsourced, I tag it with a {{cn}} if I can’t source it myself. — (talk) 03:19, 11 December 2016 (UTC)
Well, those are two different reasons for removal of content; the first one is justified per policy, the second is not. Tagging content with {{cn}} is the preferred approach, in special when you're not sure that it couldn't be sourced by someone more knowledgeable. Diego (talk) 17:47, 13 December 2016 (UTC)
@Diego Moya: Don’t WP:NOT and WP:BOLD—and even the quoted policy, Preserve appropriate content (emphasis added)—justify removing content that doesn’t fit? If someone disagrees with removal, there’s BRD, provided the restored content is sourced. — (talk) 05:01, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
There are, of course, any number of reasons why verifiable content might be justifiably removed, at least from a particular article or spot in an article, without imposing on the editor who removes it the burden of finding some place it does belong. Say, it might not be relevant to the topic of the article in question, or it might be too trivial or too detailed (or too obvious), or it might interrupt the flow of the text and make the article harder to follow, or on and on. It's not necessary to have specific policy grounds for every such removal; it's enough that you think it improves the article. Then you have to be willing to deliberate and accept consensus.
I wonder if Diego maybe was thinking you were trying to sneak in some specific reason for thinking something "doesn't belong in an encyclopedia", for example because it's considered too provocative or something. But I didn't read it that way. However I'm not current on the original dispute. --Trovatore (talk) 08:04, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
The only such reason I can think of was I considered it too trivial, to the point of not being independently verifiable. Or something like software release notes or an extensive feature list that looked like it might have been copied and pasted from PR materials. The kind of stuff that I don’t see the value of having in an encyclopedia at all, even if it weren’t unsourced. But of course I’d be happy to discuss the merits of keeping it, if it can be sourced, and if someone’s willing to discuss rather than repeatedly violating WP:BURDEN, as is too often the case. — (talk) 23:39, 14 December 2016 (UTC)
My feeling has been that there's what's allowable by policy/guideline, and what is considered "best practice". In many cases one is allowed to remove unsourced material, but in many cases if you simply remove it other editors may feel that another option (tagging, for instance) would have been the better course of action. Some editors may consider it disruptive editing if you consistently remove unsourced material rather than pursuing any other options.
One of the few bright-line policies I'm aware of is WP:BURDEN, which unequivocally states that if material has been removed for being unsourced, it is the obligation of any editor re-adding the material to provide a citation supporting the information.
Hope this helps. DonIago (talk) 14:07, 15 December 2016 (UTC)
It says at WP:V, in the lede: "All quotations, and any material whose verifiability has been challenged or is likely to be challenged, must include an inline citation that directly supports the material. Any material that needs a source but does not have one may be removed." Remove anything that you think isn't sufficiently referenced. If you get reverted, discuss. While Wikipedia prefers status quo ante during discussions the burden is on the editor adding the content. If that addition happened long ago I would err on the side of sticking to sources. Unsourced content that is likely to be challenged is a danger to the trustworthiness of the project. I don't understand why PRESERVE disagrees with this. Chris Troutman (talk) 14:18, 15 December 2016 (UTC)
I think the core sentence is "Any material that needs a source". Not every material needs sources or even reliable sources (whatever this is). The 5 pillars give a hint when sources are required "when the topic is controversial or is on living persons.". Meaning, for non-controversial things less reliable (like primary sources) or no sources might be appropriate. We still have the editiorial oversight, which works well enough. Shaddim (talk) 01:23, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
You missed the word “especially.” That word does not mean “exclusively.” — (talk) 01:44, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
There is no increase in strength on "required" possible even with "especially" ...the only conclusion from this can be that sources are not required in non-personal, non-controversial cases. Also, there is "strive". 01:51, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
It might be worth taking a look at WP:SKYISBLUE. Some facts are so obvious they don't require verification. 00:44, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
As example, here two examples, non sourced were removed. Given reason was "Usage: removing unsourced section". First, I think examples giving has a WP tradition and exist in many articles. Second, verifibility was even fullfilled with example 1, as it has a WP link (where a source or further information might be). Third, verifiability was very unlikely to be challenged for this trival facts. So, when no stronger reasons are given in the removal, I consider "no source" in such cases excessive. (Also, I would be good if the burden on source checking for a removal would be moved to the removing in this case sources are trivial to find, yet the deleting author prefered to delete) Shaddim (talk) 01:47, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
That wasn’t my only reason for removing that section. Please review the article’s Talk page, where my additional concerns have not been addressed. — (talk) 01:53, 16 December 2016 (UTC)
Relisted to generate a more thorough discussion and clearer consensus.
Relisting comment: Relisted to get responses to User:Shaddim’s comments immediately above.
Please add new comments below this notice. Thanks, (talk) 00:46, 17 December 2016 (UTC)

I would note that Wikipedia bluelinks do not satisify verifiability concerns per WP:CIRCULAR. Specifically, linked articles can change. I generally recommend that editors copy the pertinent sources from linked articles in such cases. The fact that verifiability has been challenged moots any question of whether it was "unlikely" to be challenged. We don't deal with whether material was "likely" to be challenged with regards to verifiability, we address situations where it is being challenged. And in such cases the most practical way to resolve the question is to provide a source and move on, not bicker over whether one is necessary. I'll note that I tend to feel that the more an editor argues against providing a source, the more likely it is that it's because either a) one can't be found, or b) they're not willing to do the work to provide it, neither of which makes me personally more inclined to help. If sources are so trivial to find, why are they not being provided? Why are we arguing about this? DonIago (talk) 04:33, 18 December 2016 (UTC)

I'm all in for adding sources, this is more about burden of providing these "trivial to find" sources. Currently, deleting authors tend to remove established, long standing, WP author checked, content in the blink of an eyes, without checking verifiability (or adding sources instead), often with the weak argument "no sources". Which is by itself unsuitable as not having no sources is not a deletion reason overall as only verfiability (of somekind) is required. Vandalism, POV, etc are suitable reasons for deletion, everything else I consider discussion and tagging suitable responses or "challenges". When the content is removed, it is unlikely that someone afterwrd can and will provide these sources, so I consider deletion in this case often a harmful activity. Therefore I suggested in the verifiabilty section the raising of the bar for challenges with "deletion" by doing at least the verifiability check, restoring the balance between creation burden and deletion burden. Shaddim (talk) 14:05, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
If an editor cites his sources in the first place, as is usually the case per longstanding policy, there’s no issue. In fact, I’m not aware of a project-space page that encourages adding content before finding sources (WP:NOR discourages exactly that), so really this should never be an issue. — (talk) 18:24, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
We have many policies and position essays (WP:SKYISBLUE, WP:PRESERVE, Wikipedia:Inline_citation#When_you_must_use_inline_citations, and especially Wikipedia:Five_pillars) which indicate many situations where NO sources or weaker sources or other forms of verifiability are suitable. Additionally to many legacy articles or imported article material which also might have suitable content without being excessively sourced. So, in general "no sources" is an invalid "challenge", additional, to that that such light-hearted deletions are a quite harmful activity. This misbalance in burden between adding and removing we need to address to fulfill our over-arching goal. Shaddim (talk) 19:11, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
It’s not misbalanced. What is the material you’re adding based on if it’s not SKYISBLUE obvious? If you’re not basing it on citable sources, it’s original research. None of those pages advocate writing without sources; PRESERVE only tells us how to deal with the aftermath of it. Nowhere, as far as I’m aware, do we say anything remotely like, “Write whatever you want about the subject; we’ll worry about verifying it later.” Because that would be contrary to our goal of building a respectable encyclopedia. — (talk) 19:36, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
There is a big difference between something not being citable and not providing a cite. WP:V does not demand that everything without exception be cited. If it did, then challenging something merely because it does not have a cite would be legitimate. Not requiring that implies that such behaviour is not legitimate. Some people have got it into their heads that every single sentence must be cited. Nowhere in academic publishing is this a requirement. Wikipedia is the only place that does it (and it is not actually a requirement here either). Too often I have seen passages removed that are perfectly fine just because they have a {{cn}} tag on them placed by a drive-by tagger with no real interest in the page. Articles get cluttered with a sea of blue numbers to protect against that. In my view, any information that is commonly found in undergraduate textbooks really does not need citing and editors should not be called to task to do it, or have their work slashed for not doing it. At most, a general reference should be required. SpinningSpark 19:55, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
Indeed, this is a problem. I made a proposal on WP:V/Wikipedia:CHALLENGED to raise the bar at least at little bit by defining a valid "challenge" more strict, and making "no sources" not a valid challenge anymore (especially for deletion challenges). — Preceding unsigned comment added by Shaddim (talkcontribs) 20:16, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
@User talk: You didn't address my scenario which is not about adding material but the already existing material: which might exist already happily in the article for years, reviewed by dozen of WP authors as suitable, found useful by readers, and which now got deleted, over-eagerly by an trigger happy author with the quick evaluation "no source" missing that the mark is verfiabilty, not sources. In this case he should have the burden of checking if he want to change established article consensus. Shaddim (talk) 20:01, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
"No source", by itself, is not really a valid reason for removal except on BLPs, and perhaps negative remarks on other kinds of articles. "No source and doubt that this is true" is a valid reason. "No source and failed to find any" is a valid reason. It is so easy nowadays to do a quick and dirty search of books or news sites that there is no reason not to require that of the would-be deleter. SpinningSpark 20:42, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
Of course, if material you believe belongs in an article has been challenged, regardless of whether the reasoning was "valid", the most practical course is usually simply to provide a source and move on. In any event, claiming "invalid reason for removal" and simply restoring unsourced material will likely lead to a WP:BURDEN situation in any case. DonIago (talk) 21:34, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
Problem is there might be no one who takes this burden to reinstatiate good verifiable content after an unsuitable "no source" removal. Also, this creates double and triple work of removing and recreating while creating a negative atmosphere among the authors (reverts are harmful). The best would be, that only the "deleting challenges" would happen when content is really non-defendable as being non-verifiable. The easiest measure is shifting the burden to the deleting authors. It can be also seen as process optimization by giving the required steps in one hand, reducing the required number of WP authors in this process. Shaddim (talk) 22:54, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
Yes, Doniago, that is certainly the current situation with BURDEN, but this is the page to discuss policy changes and Shaddim is right, it is high time the burden was shifted slightly. Yes, the ideal situation is to have someone add a cite, but too often the original editor has long gone and no one else shows much interest. There should at least be a duty on the deleter to do a cursory check of verifiablility before deleting. SpinningSpark 23:21, 18 December 2016 (UTC)
It would seem to me that editors should be assuming good faith in such cases, which is to say that the deleter did do a cursory check and wasn't able to locate a source that they felt would be satisfactory. If there's strong evidence to suggest that an editor is routinely and flagrantly deleting material without doing such a cursory check to the best of their abilities, then it might be worth considering whether that falls under disruptive editing, but a) I don't know how you could prove that an editor isn't doing a cursory check, and frankly it seems rather petty to me, and b) as I've stated, in my experience it's a lot more useful to the project to source material that perhaps should have been sourced to begin with than to quibble over whether it needs to be sourced. If sources can readily be provided, which is the better use of time: arguing for hours over whether it should be sourced, or taking two minutes to add a citation?
At this point I would much rather see the specifics of what changes editors would like to see made rather than arguing about this in general and potentially inapplicable ways. DonIago (talk) 13:47, 19 December 2016 (UTC)
Well, I have the feeling the good faith assumption is here a little bit misbalanced in direction of removals (full good faith assumption) while it seems no good faith is assumed on content addition, full burden shifted to the adding authors. As I would argue deletions are as least as powerful (or dangerous) as additions I would expect some equality in the requirements and "faith assumptions". Beside, I have a concrete formulation proposal over at the talk page of verifiability. Shaddim (talk) 11:04, 20 December 2016 (UTC)
The mis-balance that is corrected for somewhat, is the mis-balance toward adding content without citation (the easy way) - well, if you wish to take the easy way, just know that you leave it open to removal. Alanscottwalker (talk) 12:48, 20 December 2016 (UTC)

The encyclopedia is continually being accused of not being reliable. Since we have no board of paid editors to make certain that the material here is correct and reliable, verifiability through sources, preferably inline sources, is the only way we have to assure ordinary users of the encyclopedia of that fact. The tension, of course, is between encouraging people to build the encyclopedia, on the one hand, and insuring its reliability and reputation for reliability on the other. Putting a burden on removal of unsourced material beyond that already stated in BURDEN will cause editors who have genuine doubts about the verifiability of unsourced material to hang back from removing it lest they be blocked or banned for removing it without searching for sources for it to the competence level chosen by their accuser. In doing so, it disenfranchises the casual editor of this encyclopedia "that anyone can edit," and leaves removal of unsourced material to that — some say dwindling — core of editors who devote a large part of their life to the encyclopedia and who will take the time to be absolutely certain that sources cannot be found before removing material. It also puts an additional cartridge in the gun of fringe editors: If I see an unsourced entry in Westminster Abbey saying that it's haunted by the ghost of Geoffrey Chaucer, do I really in fear of being blocked, banned, or criticized need to go searching for some obscure source for that assertion which then has to be evaluated for reliability or should I be able to rely, as is the case today, on my concern that it cannot be reliably sourced and merely remove it? No. Giving editors who add material the discretion to source or not source on the basis of whether material is likely to be challenged is fine: That encourages the growth of the encyclopedia and makes it easier on new editors, but we also need to have the ability to easily and quickly removed unsourced material if anyone even slightly doubts that they have exercised that judgment incorrectly. (And that also applies to material which has been introduced and left untouched for long periods of time; many articles and introductions of material receive no attention until long after the material has been introduced.) Let me close by noting that this is a perennial topic of discussion at the V talk page and the consensus there has always been to maintain the current balance. Regards, TransporterMan (TALK) 17:30, 22 December 2016 (UTC)

In an effort (perhaps doomed) to provide a little clarity to the involved editors, let me define a few terms:
A piece of information is verifiable when it is possible for someone who has enough time, money, skill, effort, and motivation to determine that at least one (1) reliable source has previously published (anywhere in the world, any time since the invention of writing, in any language) this piece of information. WP:Verifiability requires that everything in the encyclopedia be verifiable in this way.
A piece of information is labeled with some indication of where this piece of information allegedly can be verified. Note that a piece of information can be "cited" but not "verifiable" (e.g., citation to a non-existent source). Only four types of material are required to be cited (see WP:MINREF for the list).
A process of tagging or removing material specifically and primarily because you believe – to the best of your knowledge – that it is impossible for a well-resourced, dedicated person to find a reliable source that has previously published that information. Not "well, it's not cited already, and I can't be bothered to spend 15 seconds with my favorite search engine" or "I don't think that an encyclopedia should use ==Rationale== as a section heading", or "I'm not very good at research, so I thought I'd just blank anything that didn't have citations and tell other people to go find sources for me" or anything else. Properly speaking, you can only WP:CHALLENGE and remove unsourced information if you think it will be absolutely impossible for anyone to find a reliable source that supports it, and you should be hesitant to do this if you haven't got a basic understanding of the subject (e.g., the sort of understanding you'd get by spending a couple of minutes talking to Mr Google about the subject).
Normal editing
The process of adding stuff that (in your best judgement) belongs, removing stuff that (in your best judgment) doesn't belong, and improving everything else.
It'd be nice to see more of that last item on those pages. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:07, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
"Properly speaking, you can only WP:CHALLENGE and remove unsourced information if you think it will be absolutely impossible for anyone to find a reliable source that supports it" is correct only if by "properly speaking" you mean "if you are to follow best practices." There is no part of V which establishes that as a requirement. It is, unquestionably, a best practice, but the language in V is clearly permissive, not mandatory. However, the point of whether it is mandatory or a best practice is moot since we must assume good faith that the person doing it thinks that. This is not a standard that requires the deleter to do any research nor does it require any particular level of editor experience or knowledge of WP policies and practices, so it is only what the deleter has in his or her head that matters and what an editor thinks, except perhaps in cases of CIR, is exactly what AGF is intended to protect. This is not, moreover, wikilawyering the language of V: A stronger standard was fought for, and rejected, at the time that language was inserted into the policy. This has been discussed time and again at the V talk page (including a number of times after that language was adopted) and the conclusion is always that it is acceptable to remove material simply because it is unsourced (at least if you only do it occasionally and in limited quantity, and, some would say, after preserving it — but those are different issues than what we're talking about here), with the next-best best practice being to remove it and say that you have a concern that it is unverifiable, the next-next practice being to {{cn}}-tag it and leave it awhile and then remove it if no one inserts a source, and the very best practice being to search for a reliable source and only remove it if you cannot find one. Regards, TransporterMan (TALK) 21:22, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
WP:V says "When tagging or removing material for lacking an inline citation, please state your concern that it may not be possible to find a published reliable source for the content, and therefore it may not be verifiable". I suppose we could add "And don't tell lies", if you want to close the loophole between "state that you think it may not be possible to source this, even if you know perfectly well that it would be possible to source this" and "don't do this unless you are sincerely concerned that it may not be possible to source it", but generally our editors are scrupulously honest on such points. One of the points here is clear communication (so that you don't have to guess whether my section-blanking was a CHALLENGE or some other type of editing); another is to stop people from crying BURDEN when the real problem cannot be solved merely by providing sources. WhatamIdoing (talk) 04:29, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
  • "the conclusion is always that it is acceptable to remove material simply because it is unsourced" - That "always" is inaccurate; it would we more accurate to say "it is acceptable to remove material because it is unsourced as long as the removal is not considered disruptive". Reasons why such removal may be considered disruptive include the ones you list (removing large amounts of content without trying to verify it first, failing to leave traces to preserve it, bulk removal of every uncited sentence in an article as a way to force others to include inline citations...) Many editors also think that removing content without leaving a trace from old articles, that were written in a lest strict environment and have few reviewers, is disruptive. I would like to have this case spelled out in policy, if only as a best practice. Diego (talk) 10:15, 28 December 2016 (UTC)
Diego (and somewhat to WhatamIdoing's comments in my second part, below), while I accept and agree with Diego's qualification I would note two things: First, while I don't hang around ANI much I do look at it when we have a flap at V over this issue and someone involved in the flap is being challenged at ANI. My experience is that it is very rare for an editor to be sanctioned, especially (but not only) with any sanction more than just criticism or, occasionally, admonition for engaging in any of those practices unless edit warring is involved. (It is to be noted that there is no 3RR exception for enforcement of BURDEN. That causes BURDEN to work in a salubrious way: When the dispute is over removal of newly-added unsourced material, the editor adding the material will hit the 3RR barrier first; when over the removal of longer-standing material, the remover will hit that barrier first. While that may be an unintended effect, it's a good one.) I have been told that such sanctions are more common than I've seen, but each time I ask the person asserting that to provide a list of examples, either none comes forth or there are considerations involved in the listed cases other than mere removal of unsourced material. Second, there have been a few efforts at V to codify those exceptions, none successful. I think that's in large part to the fact that they're really hard to define, especially briefly, and often fall into the "I know it when I see it" area. Best regards, TransporterMan (TALK) 19:15, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
I doubt that sanctions are more common than what you've seen (perhaps they are more common than what some people have seen, but IMO not more common than what you have seen). However, I don't think that a disinclination to punish editors for violating this rule proves that the rule doesn't exist. I think it indicates that the community prefers to resolve content disputes through non-punishment methods. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:43, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

Removal of ISBN magic links

Just a heads up, there is a proposal to have a bot wipe out all the ISBN magic links at Wikipedia:Bots/Requests for approval#Yobot 27. Relevant links MW:Requests for comment/Future of magic links and Wikitech-l: Future of magic links / making ISBN linking easier. Looks like the proposal is to use a template instead like {{ISBN}} SpinningSpark 16:51, 17 December 2016 (UTC)

Spinningspark, thanks for drawing attention to this. I've left notes on WT:ISBN, WT:MEDRS and Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Medicine (because it affects PMID too). Do you know whether consensus was established to do this? Pinging Legoktm who wrote the MediaWiki RfC. SarahSV (talk) 16:20, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
Jytdog points out that there was also Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Medicine/Archive_89#PMID_magic_links. SarahSV (talk) 16:25, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
To be clear, the proposal isn't to ban links or anything; it's to de-magic the words so that it's possible to write PMID or ISBN or RFC followed by a number and not have them create non-removable links. Right now, for example, if you're talking about our own WP:RFC process, and you want to talk about multiple RFCs on a page, then you can't write "RFC 1" and "RFC 2" without getting links to on "Host software" and an unnamed piece from 1969 on how the internet works.
{{PMID}} was created in 2006 as an alternative to plain PMID. I think medicine-related articles will be fine (even though I'm one of the few who use this magic link). WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:13, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
If anyone wants to see which pages are affected, then you can find the lists in these categories:
My quick look at the PMID page suggests that there are about 2,000 pages with RFC links (maybe two-thirds are articles) and 6,000 pages with PMID links (fewer than half are articles). The number of ISBN links is much higher, and that's what the bot proposal focusing on. WhatamIdoing (talk), 21:12, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply. It's unlikely that anyone would want to write PMID 27707452 without linking to PubMed, but adding nowiki works: PMID 27707452. Regardless of the arguments in either direction, this surely needs consensus. ISBN and PMID magic links are used by editors who don't use citation templates; the former is used a lot. A bot went around removing all the {{pmid}} templates not that long ago. SarahSV (talk) 21:20, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
That was {{cite pmid}}, not {{pmid}}.
Trappist the monk (talk) 19:18, 24 December 2016 (UTC)
There are over 340,000 pages using the ISBN links. SarahSV (talk) 21:21, 22 December 2016 (UTC)
  • Coming late to this discussion after spotting a mention on a user talk page of the planned disappearance of the magic link for ISBNs: this seems a very bad idea. Because once in a while someone wants to put a number after an isbn and have it not linked, we propose to lose the splendid "magic" whereby an isbn entered by any editor, however naive, is magically linked to the "Book sources" page which validates the existence and details of the book in question. I suggest that a better solution is to use ISBN{{nbsp}}1 or ISBN{{nbsp}}9781910392171 for those rare occasions where the isbn should not be linked, and to leave the magic linking in place for the other 99.9n% (at a guess) of instances. Where was this discussed? It doesn't seem to have been mentioned at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Books where editors interested and expert in books (and therefore in isbns) are likely to be found. (And it's perfectly possible to write "RFC 1" without it making a link). PamD 18:35, 24 December 2016 (UTC)
    My understanding is that the bot request is going to replace the existing "magic" links with template ones - so that they still work, phab:T148274 indicates that the wikimedia developers are removing the "magic" functionality. We can simply to nothing, and they will turn to unlinked plain text - or we can do "something". — xaosflux Talk 18:56, 24 December 2016 (UTC)
Replacing "ISBN 9781910392171" with ISBN 9781910392171 (i.e. {{ISBN|9781910392171}}) has some advantages, including detection of invalid ISBNs, and the ability to use characters before and after the ISBN that are currently interfering with the magic linking. One downside, of course, is that editors have to type a few more characters. I think the benefits outweigh the negatives. – Jonesey95 (talk) 20:41, 24 December 2016 (UTC)
But where was the discussion leading to the decision that the wikimedia developers should remove this functionality? This change will have two results: more work for editors wanting to addd an ISBN (ie having to remember to use a template and type the extra keystrokes) and no linking for the ISBNs which are input by un-knowledgeable editors. Unless a bot is going to run regularly to templatise any new occurrences of "ISBN nnnnnnnnnnnnn"? PamD 18:38, 26 December 2016 (UTC)
@PamD: See: mw:Talk:Requests_for_comment/Future_of_magic_links - note this is not specific to the English Wikipedia. — xaosflux Talk 22:11, 26 December 2016 (UTC)
Can we not request that it be retained, or that a discussion take place first? It wasn't brought to the attention of the people who use it most, so no one knew to take part in the RfC. I saw MZMcBride write somewhere, I believe in November, that if anyone wanted to keep them, speak up now. MZMcBride, can that still be done? We're talking specifically about the ISBN magic link, and to a lesser extent PMID. SarahSV (talk) 22:30, 26 December 2016 (UTC)
Hi SarahSV. I think the only situation worse than having magic links would be to have magic link behavior that's different between Wikimedia wikis. That is, we would never want to indefinitely support magic links only on the English Wikipedia, for example.
My previous request was for people to speak up if there were concerns that would block changing the syntax from ISBN 1234 to {{ISBN|1234}}. Skimming this discussion and others, the arguments against doing this seem to be that the magic behavior is easier for editors. I would counter that the magic behavior is actually not great for new editors because it's inconsistent with how almost every other type of link works. Magic links pre-date the existence of templates. They actually even pre-date the existence of MediaWiki. If magic links were proposed today, they would almost certainly be rejected. We don't want the wikitext parser to have to guess at what should and should not be a link for most cases. (A weird exception is "free" links such as <>.) Generally, we want to be explicit, as we are with nearly every kind of citation template.
If you look at Template:Citation/identifier#Usage, how would you explain to a new editor that three links (ISBN, RFC, and PMID) are special magic links and every other citation has a wrapper template?
I'm certainly still interested in arguments against changing the syntax from being magical to being explicit. In the admittedly scattered discussions we've had about magic links so far, the arguments to keep have been pretty weak, in my opinion. (cc: PamD) --MZMcBride (talk) 22:57, 26 December 2016 (UTC)
MZMcBride, thanks for the explanation. The argument is simply that they're incredibly easy to use. Typing out the templates is tiresome when you're doing a lot of it, and it seems a pity to remove that ease deliberately. Pinging Jytdog, who made a similar point. SarahSV (talk) 23:14, 26 December 2016 (UTC)

(un-indent) Yeah, that's part of the curse of templates, I suppose. Templates provide consistency, easier standardization, and input validation, however the wikitext is often uglier and more cumbersome as a result. As an analogy, perhaps, in your reply you used {{u|Jytdog}} instead of just writing "Jytdog" or even "@Jytdog". For better or worse, templates are what we have and what we commonly use. I think removing the "magic" behavior of ISBN, RFC, and PMID links will simplify wikitext behavior and human understanding of wikitext behavior in the long run.

Certain input tools such as VisualEditor may make it simpler to input just the text "ISBN 1234" and have it turn into a link that uses a wrapper template. That would help new and old users alike. I also think it's reasonable for us as users to insist that the existing link behavior be fully deprecated before being disabled. That is, I don't care if it takes four or five years for us to phase out the "ISBN 1234" magic syntax and empty the Pages using ISBN magic links tracking category. There's no real rush in my mind, but it is something we should do unless there are really good reasons not to. To me, the convenience of the current behavior is outweighed by the inconsistency and arbitrary special treatment of these three magic citation types. It's unnecessarily difficult and frankly silly to have to explain to users that PMID is special, but PMC is not. ISBN is special, but ISSN is not. I think we gain a lot, including simplifying the wikitext parser, by eliminating this magic link behavior.

Regarding behavior in a post-magic link world, a new user will type "ISBN 1234" into an article. If a tool like VisualEditor doesn't make the text a link, the user can look at and copy existing ISBN examples that are linked. To me, this is a much better experience than the current behavior where the text is a link and it's much more difficult to understand why. You have to know that in November 2001, Magnus added an "ISBN" function that made this string special. --MZMcBride (talk) 02:32, 27 December 2016 (UTC)

We can probably use the edit filter to at least tag these after the magic is gone - will give the bots something to feed on since the tracking category won't work anymore. — xaosflux Talk 02:42, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
MZMcBride, why can't we have more magic links? It would be great to have them for ISSN, PMC and notifications (where @MZMcBride pings you). Regarding taking years to phase them out, there's a BRFA to remove them entirely. SarahSV (talk) 02:50, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
It's a matter of being explicit versus implicit. When you're explicit, there's no ambiguity about whether you meant for there to be a link. When you're implicit, you might be in a context where linking does or does not make sense.
Imagine you didn't use the "@" prefix with a user name. This is sort of similar to magic links. If you just wrote "MZMcBride", the software would have to guess whether you wanted to notify/ping the user or just wanted to mention them. Even if the software tried to make the simplest guess (always link, always notify), there's still a matter of figuring out what the user name is. "MZMcBride is a user" is a valid user name. "A" is a valid user name. Even with a "@" prefix, constructs can have ambiguity such as the input string "@Only in death is a user on the English Wikipedia". In this case, the software has to figure out that the user name is "Only in death". This is really tricky. If you compare to the explicit syntax case, such as using the {{u}} template, it becomes a bit easier to see why developers and their parsers prefer templates and other forms of explicit syntax. It's less guesswork, which generally results in more straightforward and expected behavior for everyone.
Regarding bots, I don't think it's a problem if bots or other automated/semi-automated tools are used to facilitate a syntax change. If the deprecation of magic linking happens faster, that's fine with me. I was just saying that if it takes a longer time, that's also fine, as I don't see a pressing need to remove the 15-year-old magic syntax until we're ready to do so. Ready to do so would mean we've updated the syntax in most of the cases we care about (subject-space content pages). --MZMcBride (talk) 03:21, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
  • (Comment made first at User_talk:Magioladitis#ISBNs but more appropriate here:) OK, I can see that this is a fait accompli, and can understand that the delightful, useful, slightly quirky, "magic" is perhaps old-fashioned and complicates matters for current technology, so after my initial shock I am now resigned to the fact that this "progress" will happen. It will have a negative effect on my personal editing experience, having to remember to use the template (and include 5 extra characters, more than 5 keystrokes with shifts, even messier if on mobile) rather than just typing a natural ISBN and knowing the magic will happen.
But a more serious concern is: what mechanism will pick up and templatise bare ISBNs added in future? Will it be added to the AWB "genfixes"? Will there be a bot trawling regularly to check for bare ISBNs? I suggest that the number of times an ISBN followed by a number is a deliberate non-link is vanishingly small, so that it would be reasonable to templatise all of these automatically. Is there a plan? PamD 09:26, 27 December 2016 (UTC)
And an even more serious one, who will decide, out of the millions if ISBNs which are the the ones (if indeed there are any) which are "incorrect" and should not be linked? Sure magic links have the scope to be incorrect, there may be a song called ISBN 978-324-333-552-1 and someone will have a NIGHTMARE of coding difficulty putting "nowiki" tags around that (Oh the humanity!).
What are people thinking? Is there one example where "magic links" have been wrong so far?
All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 18:11, 27 December 2016 (UTC).
Cannot anyone who does not want an ISBN magic link do "<nowiki>ISBN whatever they wnat</nowiki>"? Isn;t that easier then screwing up over 340,000 pages? Beyond My Ken (talk) 00:52, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
Well, yes, from our POV, it's easier for us to not write the bot that will fix all of these and to not have our watchlists light up with the bot's changes and to not use a consistent approach to links in these articles.
But from the devs' POV, they've been maintaining this 15-year-old pre-MediaWiki legacy quirk for a long time, and they don't choose to do that any longer. From their POV, letting this feature die is much easier for them than continuing to support it, and there are additionally rational design reasons (see MZMcBride's comments) for them to remove it.
So it's not really a question of "what's easiest?", as if there were one thing that were easiest for everyone; it's more of a question of "who's ox is being gored?" The answer to the question seems to be the devs are harmed if the quirky feature stays [because maintaining it would impose unwanted work on them] and the editors are harmed if the quirk gets removed [because we'd lose a feature that a few of us use]. And the bot request is nicely practical: Let's just have a bot fix this, so that the devs' change doesn't remove links from articles (or even other pages). WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:45, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
  • I'm confused: What is the procedure for a massive projected bot-enacted change at the same time there is an active ArbCom request open specifically about the bot in question? I'm trying to avoid pouring gasoline (or petrol) on what appears to be an already-large dumpster fire. I don't have any dog in that fight. I am concerned, however, with how this will affect the ISBN functionality that I do use. Apologies if this is already covered above or elsewhere (I didn't see any such). Thanks. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 02:20, 29 December 2016 (UTC)
    • I doubt that there is any precedent, and therefore editors will have to use common sense. The task could be passed to another bot, or it could just be ignored. (In that case, whenever the feature dies, we'll have plain old text instead of links, which is not a fatal fault.)
      As for the ISBN feature, it appears that this is going away, for fundamental technical/software architecture reasons, regardless of whether the links are replaced by a bot at this (or any other) wiki. Whether it goes away is up to the MediaWiki community, not us; whether we decide to pre-transform the existing links into templates is up to us, not them. WhatamIdoing (talk) 01:56, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

Hi Rich Farmbrough. I think most of the reasoning for wanting to get rid of magic links has been sufficiently given in the previous comments. But I wanted to respond to your specific comment about when you might not want a magic link. We've seen cases where magic link functionality has worked or not worked in weird contexts, such as section headings or edit summaries, causing confusion. In addition, magic linking offers users no control over the output. We have templates such as {{ISBNT}} for contexts in which people don't want to repeat "ISBN" every time, such as in tables. ISBN syntax is also difficult to internationalize and has presented problems in non-English wikis.

Regarding the general practice of deprecating and replacing wikitext syntax, you're surely familiar with the practice given edits such as this. The primary (and perhaps sole) benefit that magic links have is that they're convenient for wikitext editing. The detriments are outlined in this section, including inconsistency with almost every other kind of citation markup. Your arguments elsewhere that we would be "overloading" the template system by having a means of doing input validation on ISBNs is without merit, in my opinion. Lua/Scribunto modules such as Module:Check isxn were specifically implemented to solve for use-cases like this. --MZMcBride (talk) 01:29, 31 December 2016 (UTC)

Lets summarize :
  • Pro magic:
    • It's easy to use.
    • The wikitext is readable.
    • It almost always does what is wanted.
    • If you want other behaviour, templates are available.
  • Con magic:
    • There are some bugs in Mediawiki.
    • There are some more bugs in Mediawiki
The arguments about explicit markup are what got us in the nightmare scenario with every date being wiki-linked. Yes, if we change we will have to make 364,000 edits, but that's not a problem really (though blue murder will be screamed) given the number of edits is around 600 million. And of course, all the historical versions of pages (some 600 million) will stop functioning.
There seems to be a general philosophical problem here, in favour of complexity. Complexity is needed in order to deal with exceptions, but systems should be designed so that the complexity does not have to be invoked for the non-exceptions. To do otherwise is to bear an enormous unnecessary burden.
All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 10:23, 31 December 2016 (UTC).
That's not a fair summary at all. :-)
As mentioned many times, magic links pre-date the existence of templates. They even pre-date the existence of MediaWiki itself. Why should ISBN, PMID, and RFC be special? These three magic links are the exception, not the rule.
Suggesting that all historical versions of pages will stop functioning is pretty hyperbolic. Old versions of articles are already wrecked due to template changes, CSS changes, parsing changes, image changes, etc. The behavior here is that "ISBN 1234" will not be a link in older revisions. This is one of the most minor concerns when trying to look at an old version of a page. Not being able to view the images or templates as they were is a much, much bigger issue.
And not to fan the flames of this fire, but the 364,000 figure being thrown around is low. The tracking category isn't fully populated.
Regarding complexity, using regular expressions and what we literally call "magic" behavior is far more complex than treating these links the same way we treat all other templates. We already have built infrastructure to track templates, to do input validation, to provide an on-wiki means of changing output behavior, etc. Why would we duplicate all of this work for magic links? That's significantly more complex. We want to be explicit, not implicit, in wikitext. As Python puts it, "In the face of ambiguity, refuse the temptation to guess." --MZMcBride (talk) 14:28, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
I think that Rich is correct in saying that it's a philosophical difference. I might say that some editors want it to be "simple for me, even if that's complex for you", and that devs also want it to be "simple for me, even if that's complex for you". This isn't an "absolute right or wrong" kind of problem. It's about personal values and the compromises that have to be made when two groups want mutually incompatible outcomes. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:49, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
Longer term, you could probably easily do a transformation during paste or by the link dialog in the 2017 wikieditor. That's how many markdown editors do that too; you paste a link, and it inserts [title](yourlink) for you instead. Technically, this part of wikitext just doesn't make any sense unless you are one of the few who currently are used to it. But it's a total outlier and a complex exception that holds us back for no good reason other than 'but it's been like this for 17 years'. Maybe we should consider the next 100 years and not the last 17. Sometimes at a busy junction, you just have to remove a train track, to make sure the rest of the tracks can service trains more predictably and to make long term cost more manageable. —TheDJ (talkcontribs) 21:42, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

Proposed changes to the "What is edit warring" section of the Edit warring policy

Our Edit Warring policy has a section titled "What edit warring is". However, the text in that section never explicitly defines the concept. Arguably, a definition might be implied (maybe) but if so it is buried way down in the third sentence. We could help NEWBIES and reduce drama in general if this section more clearly stated how it works. There is some marked-up draft text that shows the changes I propose. Please offer your input at the policy talk page in the "Definition section" thread. Thanks NewsAndEventsGuy (talk) 11:36, 3 January 2017 (UTC)

how does 2nd chance work in practice, if it really exists?

on the south african maling list, User:DjMlindos was trying to get his account unblocked 4 years after blocking this and his sockpuppet. he was referrec to Template:2nd_chance. i am wondering first if 2nd chance is a real feature to be available to users, and second, if yes, how technically this should work? e.g. where to say "i want to have a 2nd chance", and how this would be configured in wikipedia? technically i do not have enough experience, but i suppose he is blocked from editing, and creating a new account - otherwise i suppose he would just do it. and wikipedia would be open to allow indefinitely blocked to easily create sock puppets. --ThurnerRupert (talk) 08:55, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

Nope, that's not how it works. Blocks apply to the person, not just any accounts or IP addresses they use. If a person is blocked, they are not allowed to edit anything except their talk page, and they are only allowed to edit that for purposes of understanding and appealing their block. That second chance template explicitly tells the blocked user to "Copy the portion of the prose from that article that you will be proposing changes to" and paste it on their talk page -- they do not get to directly edit any articles. It does not address what happens if a user's talk page access has been revoked because that almost always means that the user is just not going to be productive. If DjMlindos (or any other user whose talk page access has been revoked) wanted to go thought the steps at Template:2nd_chance (and the standard offer), then he would need to send a UTRS request asking for his talk page access back. Then, following the steps at Template:2nd_chance and WP:SO, the blocked user would need to not make a new account or sockpuppet for six months, not edit from their IP address for six months, and so on. They could post on their talk page, asking questions about policies and guidelines related to their block with the intention of fully understanding why they were blocked. After that sixth month period, they could pick an article they think needs help, copy a portion of that article to their talk page, and make changes to that portion to show what kind of help they could provide. Then, they make a new unblock request that shows they know exactly what they did wrong (without blaming others or hiding behind generalities), what efforts they will make to avoid those mistakes in the future, and indicating what kind of work they would like to do on the site. Ian.thomson (talk) 04:12, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Sourcing for plot summary in book article

I'm looking at Plot section of articles like The Golem's Eye, which are a regurgitated detailed narrative like a junior high school book report, and totally unreferenced. Another editor ridiculed me, saying the source was the book itself! I.e., the editor read and summarized the book himself. Isn't that original research? Can't I legitimately question: who says that's what the book is about? On the other hand, it's often difficult to find a plot summary suitable for a concise encyclopedic article, which is not drawn from promotional or merchandising material. If I were writing an article for a literary review journal, I'd have to cite sources, why not here? Anyway, the Plot is supposed to be what the story is about, not a retelling of the story itself. That's an artistic creation, original work, copyrightable, if one were inclined. Can the Plot section of the article be removed as <unreferenced> or alternatively as <original research>? I seriously doubt that any published source can be found with the level of detail in the section... some editor made it up.Sbalfour (talk) 20:15, 30 December 2016 (UTC)

I think MOS:BOOKPLOT has this covered. DonIago (talk) 20:20, 30 December 2016 (UTC)
Basic plot details can be sourced to the work itself. Anything that requires interpretation (character motivation etc) needs a secondary source. Which is why so many read like 'and then X did Y and married Z' because that level of basic plot description is all that can be reliably sourced. For an interesting semi-related issue, see List of Wikipedia controversies in 2012 for the Philip Roth silliness where secondary sources were given preference over primary. Only in death does duty end (talk) 00:53, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
I've also regularly seen professional critics get simple plot details wrong that are easily verifiable from the works themselves. Reviewers are often working on tight deadlines or are simply careless about details that aren't germaine to the themes they are more interested in (or they are just disdainful of a movie or whatever they are only reviewing because they were told by their editor to). Primary sources are always going to be the most reliable and authoritative source for their own content. Even apart from inaccuracy in secondary sources, we can also really make an article worse by putting the cart before the horse with nonsense like "according to Roger Ebert, Darth Vader reveals himself to be Luke's father" (not an actual example, but I've seen the equivalent), as if the critic has special access to some information we wouldn't know about otherwise. postdlf (talk) 01:11, 31 December 2016 (UTC)
An additional reason that editor written plot summaries can be good it that they can 9and should!) avoid the "hook" syndrome of jacket blurbs and TV listings. All the best: Rich Farmbrough, 10:59, 31 December 2016 (UTC).
You may find WP:USEPRIMARY useful. WhatamIdoing (talk) 20:27, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
Secondary sources tend to be secondhand information. And secondhand information is frequently wrong or oversimplified. One thus needs to be careful when using secondary sources for raw information - which includes plot summaries - rather than analysis, evaluation, interpretation, or synthesis. Jo-Jo Eumerus (talk, contributions) 09:53, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Proposal to modify administrator inactivity policy

I have posted a proposal to modify the administrator inactivity policy; see Wikipedia talk:Administrators#Proposal. Maxim(talk) 12:57, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Does Wikipedia want to be current...

or does wp want to be "behind the times" by waiting for new discoveries to be reviewed? I'm a somewhat frustrated newbie and retired biologist. I'm troubled by the wp definition of OR. Let me explain. Suppose I wanted to test the adage that "the early bird gets the worm." I could get up from bed way before sunrise (a bizarre thought in retirement) and sit next to my front lawn on 3 nice spring days. Starting at the official time of sunrise, I could count how many worms are pulled up by birds in the first hour and, separately, in the second hour after sunrise. I could calculate the average number of worms pulled up during those 2 intervals to see if early birds get more worms. I could publish that data, which I am now naming Personal Data, on my facebook page. However, I could not publish PD on wp. I could not cite my facebook page as a source on wp, because it is unreliable and unverifiable. PD is the kind of OR that wp doesn't want. However, what is frustrating to me is that editors keep on dissing discussions/citations of Original scientific Research articles as OR as if they are as undesirable as PD. Original scientific Research articles are not PD! They are overwhelmingly collections of controlled, laboratory, experimental PD generated by multiple people, collected as a series of figures, scrutinized by the authors and combined into a manuscript, then presented to a journal, which sends it out to independent experts for (generally anonymous) peer review. Then, the manuscript is sent back to the authors to address the peer review concerns. Eventually, excellent work is published as Original scientific Research articles in more or less prestigious journals. One of the (if not THE) most prestigious journals is Nature. I've had an editor dis a Nature paper I wanted to cite becuse it was just OR. Unbelievable. smh. So, I wonder if the community wants to try to make editors aware of a difference between silly PD and respected OR in the form of peer reviewed papers? DennisPietras (talk) 23:19, 3 January 2017 (UTC)

I'm not entirely sure who told you that citing a peer reviewed journal article counts as OR but they would be wrong. If you went and tried to claim that "the early bird gets the worm" by using your research without peer review that would not be acceptable. But the part of the OR policy that you seem to have missed was The phrase "original research" (OR) is used on Wikipedia to refer to material—such as facts, allegations, and ideas—for which no reliable, published sources exist. That hypothetical article in Nature counts as a published reliable source. So...confused as to the point you are trying to make here. --Majora (talk) 23:30, 3 January 2017 (UTC)
Dennis, I agree with Majora here that I remain confused as to the point you are trying to make. If it is mainly about the Nature article you wanted to cite, it would help if you provided a diff. DrChrissy (talk) 23:40, 3 January 2017 (UTC)
Dennis, is it possible that you are confusing OR (original research) which you call "original scientific research" with primary source, published research papers? DrChrissy (talk) 23:44, 3 January 2017 (UTC)
Note that even if the article qualifies as a reliable source, it may still be considered undue weight if it presents some totally novel theory or explanation. This is not an accident of how policy has been written - it is rather quite intentional. Someguy1221 (talk) 23:45, 3 January 2017 (UTC)
Thank you all! The key here is "primary source" vs "OR". I didn't know the term primary source, so I just capitulated when experienced users called a primary source "OR". In the future, I'll be able to explain that they are confused and cite this discussion! DennisPietras (talk) 03:36, 4 January 2017 (UTC)
Be careful, interpretation of a primary source does constitute original research. Certain topics or claims even require secondary or tertiary sources (such as discussing trends or establishing notability). Also, discussions about hypothetical generalities do not always trump local policy-based consensus. Ian.thomson (talk) 03:46, 4 January 2017 (UTC)
@Ian.thomson:Thanks. I read that policy and it is fine. DennisPietras (talk) 14:06, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

RfC opened at Wikipedia talk:User categories#Request for comment on our proposed policy for users remaining in redlinked categories

I have opened up an RfC discussing what the policy should be on for users remaining in redlinked user categories after such category has been deleted at CfD, see here. VegaDark (talk) 22:17, 6 January 2017 (UTC)

Concerning on-hold GA nominee articles

If you're reviewing a GA nominee article and you put it on hold because it has minor issues, what's the point of waiting the prescribed time if you find all of the issues are fixed before that time is up? I'd like to change the policies concerning good article reviews so that if an on-hold nominee article has all of its issues fixed before the on-hold time is up, a reviewer can promote the article right away. I'd like to know what you think about that. PhilrocMy contribs 21:02, 9 January 2017 (UTC)

  • I am pretty sure there is no set time limit for holds. AIRcorn (talk) 21:11, 9 January 2017 (UTC)
    @Aircorn: Actually, the reviewer decides the time limit. And you have to wait for that time no matter if the issues are fixed before the time is up.PhilrocMy contribs 21:16, 9 January 2017 (UTC)
    To be fair it has been a long time since I was active at good articles, but this does not sound right. A reviewer should be able to pass the review whenever they feel it is ready. There was no obligation to even place it on hold and definitely no set time. If you think you have fixed all the issues you can ping or leave a message with reviewer, but ultimately it is up to them when they pass it. Can you link to the example that has prompted this question as I am not sure exactly what you want. Also you may be better asking this question at Wikipedia talk:Good article nominations as that is where you will be more likely to find participants knowledgeable on the Good Article process. AIRcorn (talk) 00:05, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
    @Aircorn: An example PhilrocMy contribs 15:28, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
    Says who? I've never had to wait the full length of time if the article meets the GA criteria right off the bat or after a few fixes. I've seen reviews passed in a day, three days, or a month after the review starts. There is no such "rule" that says you have to wait seven days. --Majora (talk) 00:08, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
    @Majora: You want to know who says that? Well, when I was in the Good Articles Recruitment Center as a recruitee, my recruiter told me that I absolutely had to wait the full time. And here's where he said it. PhilrocMy contribs 14:43, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
    @Philroc: From reading the GA review you linked, I'm pretty sure what was meant was that you shouldn't put an article on hold for a time period and then turn around and fail the review before the time you allotted had expired. There is no reason to hold open a review with all concerns addressed just because you set a deadline to close out those concerns and the deadline hasn't expired. Grondemar 18:17, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
  • My understanding of GA holds has always been that it was a maximum time for the nominator to respond. If they haven't addressed the reviewer's concerns by the end of the hold time, the article can be failed. (Or optionally the hold could be extended if the reviewer sees some progress but not quite enough.) But if the article is improved to GA standards in less time, it can be promoted as soon as it is ready. --RL0919 (talk) 16:05, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Yes, as everyone else is saying, you misunderstood. What Ankit Maity (since renamed to QEDK) meant was that you have to give the nominator time to respond. They didn't mean that a hold was mandatorily open for a specific time, regardless. You shouldn't be asking to "change the policies concerning good article reviews" when you don't even understand them. WP:GANI Step 4 explains this. Village Pump isn't even the right forum for your question. Chris Troutman (talk) 19:37, 10 January 2017 (UTC)
  • I understand now. PhilrocMy contribs 21:42, 10 January 2017 (UTC)

Wikidata state of affairs

Having witnessed many (and participated in some) Wikidata-related discussions recently, I have the intention to have an RfC on Wikidata usage on enwiki (with the intention to create an up-to-date policy or guideline). Before this can start, I believe it is best to have a preliminary state of affairs to base the RfC discussion on. With that in mind, I have created Wikipedia:Wikidata/2017 State of affairs.

Everyone is invited to contribute their knowledge of Wikidata on enwiki there. I have explained the purpose of the page at the top of it, but it is not my page so feel free to change that as well of course. I just hope that we can restrict the page to what is and what has already happened, and leave the "what should happen" for the future RfC. Fram (talk) 15:07, 11 January 2017 (UTC)

How to post an RfC on beauty pageants that addresses the community divide on deletion policy?

There is little to no forseeable benefit in continuing this discussion, which has already gone on for two weeks. An RFC has been drafted, and several related discussions are already in progress. Beeblebrox (talk) 01:24, 16 January 2017 (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.

"Wikipedia will suffer no great loss if the standalone article is nuked", is a quote yesterday from Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Allison Brown, diff, in a diff in which the commentator agrees that the topic should be included in the encyclopedia.

I posted two RfCs last week on beauty pageants on this page and each was procedurally closed.  I've had follow-up discussions with three people since then, #your post at the RfC at VPP #Community divide on ATD without resolution.  I have posted a new draft at User:Unscintillating/Draft RfC on Miss America and Miss USA entrants.

Meanwhile, on Friday we had six new beauty-pageant AfDs posted in one hour, [14].  How do we post an RfC on beauty pageants that addresses the community divide on WP:Deletion policy#Alternatives to deletion and WP:Deletion policy#CONTENTUnscintillating (talk) 14:09, 1 January 2017 (UTC)

@Unscintillating: I still don't understand why you're taking this approach. I can't imagine people supporting "grounds for action" when you seem to take great pains to omit what action that would be. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 15:50, 1 January 2017 (UTC)
There is also at least attempts at discussion underway in multiple places. Up above, there is a section here wp:Village_pump_(policy)#Proposed_inclusion_guidelines_for_beauty_pageant_winners., with almost no participation. That links to a draft on possible notability guidelines for beauty pageants designed (full disclosure:by me) to answer this very question. There actually has been a previous RfC on the subject that endorsed creating such a guideline and Further discussion of the outlines of that guideline at the relevant Wikiproject.
The small handful of participants involved (again full disclosure: I am clearly one of those) in these discussions appear to be the only ones that are interested in the subject. A previous VPP posting and previous RfC have likely ferreted out the interested editors already. New attempts to find more through new RfC's and VPP postings are not likely to change that.Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 17:17, 1 January 2017 (UTC)
As best I can tell, the discussion above you've linked and everything else you've linked has to do with the concept of notability.  WP:Notability is a guideline. 

The discussion here is about WP:Deletion policy, specifically WP:Deletion policy#Alternatives to deletion and WP:Deletion policy#CONTENTUnscintillating (talk) 18:48, 1 January 2017 (UTC)

Of course I linked to discussions and guidelines on notability. Notability is a base issue for the most common criterion under the deletion policy. Why wouldn't I (and most other editors that have contributed to those discussions) discuss notability in this context?
Also, I know of no policy, guideline, essay, or anything else that requires explicit consideration of the ATD criteria in every notability or AfD discussion. I believe it is generally recognized by AfD closers that an editor who suggests in AfD that an article does not reach notability has made an implicit recognition that ATD were considered and rejected. I would say that these do not avoid consideration of of ATD. Consideration of ATD is inherent in notability judgments. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 22:06, 1 January 2017 (UTC)
WP:DEL8 is the notability WP:DEL-REASON entry.  WP:Notability is not a content guideline, and all deletions are content deletions.  WP:Notability itself is only capable of reducing a topic to less than a standalone article.  Therefore, WP:DEL8 works indirectly, and only when there is an absence of the topic elsewhere on Wikipedia...the content deletion occurs because the content and edit history are stranded.  Nor does WP:Deletion policy#DEL8 exist in isolation from WP:Deletion policy#Alternatives to deletion.

So, no, editors are not "assumed to have considered ATD" when they !voted to delete due to notability; in fact, the presence of the topic elsewhere on Wikipedia shows that their !vote was flawed. 

Likewise, "delete and redirect" for notability is also a bogus concept, as WP:N does not define a content problem.  Unscintillating (talk) 00:28, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

There is an amazing number of things wrong with that statement considering its brevity. I will pick the 3 most important. 1. 'All deletions are content deletions' - blatantly and obviously not true. 2. 'Only when there is an absence of the topic elsewhere on Wikipedia' - also completely untrue. Articles within topics are deleted routinely because they fail notability. 3. 'The presence of the topic elsewhere on Wikipedia shows their !vote was flawed' - That is basically an OTHERSTUFFEXISTS argument and is routinely rejected by anyone conversant with deletion, WP:V and WP:GNG. Only in death does duty end (talk) 09:35, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
I'm making policy-based arguments; while the above rebuttal uses the proofs by assertion, the word "routinely", intensifiers, and an essay.  Q.E.D. that there is a community divide, and possibly one with emotional charge. 

The question remains in how to move forward.  Unscintillating (talk) 12:56, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

With all due respect, @Unscintillating:, the qualifications about policy-based arguments and proofs by assertion smack of labeling another editor's discussion as invalid. However strongly you feel they are indeed invalid, it is not very collaborative to effectively say to others: "Ignore that man behind the curtain that just posted." Besides which, they sort of cut both ways. Stating that there is a community divide on these issues and so there must be extensive debates, for example, is somewhat tautological: Most of the divide demonstrated in the original AfD's that gave rise to these discussions is between you and a small group of other editors (yes, myself included - I'm not trying to make any claim to non-involvement or neutral observer status here).
As it stands now, you've raised the issue in most places that will likely attract attention. I would posit that those who are interested are probably paying attention already and further recruitment is not likely to bear fruit. So by all means, let's move forward. I would welcome your input into the draft standards in a way that will add your concerns to the draft. It might be possible we can work out a compromise there that will reduce further AfD tension. I look forward to hearing from you. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 14:31, 2 January 2017 (UTC)
Yeah I have stubbed that article. Completely unsourced BLP giving details of non-notable family members, personal information etc. The only reason that isnt eligible or a BLPPROD is that it has an external link to the pageant website which contains a black and white photo which can even be used to confirm the subjects eye colour and it was created before 2010 when our standards were shit! The only reason *I* am not voting delete for that waste of space is that after removing what little (completely unsourced) information there was, I would face accusations of bias. Only in death does duty end (talk) 20:22, 1 January 2017 (UTC)
  • I tracked the origin of WP:ATD to here, but User:Radiant! is no longer active on Wikipedia.  Unscintillating (talk) 00:11, 7 January 2017 (UTC)
    • At the risk of being WP:BEANSy (in my defense, I'm probably too sick to be allowed out on the internet unsupervised), ATD already tells you how to stop an AFD on a subject of borderline notability. It's in the ATD-M section. You merge it to a larger article (e.g., the most relevant list of beauty pageant contestants) by making an exact copy of some part of the article's content. Use something like "Merged from [Name of AFD article], which see for attribution" as your edit summary, (ideally) redirect the original to the relevant section of the larger subject, and report your actions at the AFD page. For licensing reasons, the original can't be deleted, and Wikipedia will still have any appropriate content. WhatamIdoing (talk) 21:09, 7 January 2017 (UTC)

An RfC has been created. Thank you. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 04:00, 12 January 2017 (UTC)

That RfC is about a notability, and notability is a guideline, so that RfC has no effect on WP:Deletion policy.  Perhaps WP:ATA helps:
===Just not notable (I've never heard of merger or redirection)===
. . .

The fact that a topic is not notable is not, alone in and of itself, a valid grounds for deleting a page, its content, or its page history. It is at most an argument for merger and/or redirection. To validly argue for deletion, editors need to additionally advance separate arguments against both merger and redirection, on relevant grounds. (Since "merger" includes a history merge without redirection, an argument against redirection is not an argument against merger). Since any verifiable topic/content can in principle be redirected/merged to an article on a broader topic, this should be exceptionally difficult. Valid arguments against merger might be based on WP:V, WP:NOR, WP:NOT or WP:BLP, in particular. (In some cases it might be a prerequisite requirement to transwiki the page first). Valid arguments against redirection must be based on the criteria specified in WP:R (that the proposed redirect is clearly positively harmful). The only valid argument for "delete and redirect" is that every revision in the page history of the page otherwise eligible for redirection in question meets the criteria for revision deletion (WP:REVDEL). See further WP:ATD.

Unscintillating (talk) 23:59, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
No, it doesn't help. What would help is if you participated in the discussions already under way instead of trying to find new ways that ATD doesn't apply in order to "defend" a position. Eggishorn (talk) (contrib) 00:22, 13 January 2017 (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.

Removal of data, and Wikidata

Before authorising or operating good-faith bots which enact consensus to remove data (such as Wikipedia:Bots/Requests for approval/ZackBot 7), or deleting templates or template parameters that do so, we should consider whether the data can be migrated to Wikidata. A note can be posted to d:Wikidata:Project chat to solicit opinions or collaboration from colleagues on that project.

I'd like to see this written onto the appropriate policy (or policies). Which should that be? Andy Mabbett (Pigsonthewing); Talk to Andy; Andy's edits 13:28, 12 January 2017 (UTC)

I'd think this would be something more to consider in the deletion policies than the bot policies - the bots will just carry out the work. — xaosflux Talk 14:39, 12 January 2017 (UTC)
Is it worth a mention in WP:WHATISTOBEDONE as an alternative for unencyclopedic content? Triptothecottage (talk) 03:51, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

Should we link to Buzzfeed's Donald Trump Dossier / COPYVIOEL?

this forum is not for discussion of content issues, it is for discussion of policy changes, and there does not appear to be any such proposal here, and there are other related discussions that can be expanded to discuss this specific issue if needed. Beeblebrox (talk) 23:30, 18 January 2017 (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 question specifically concerns whether this is a proper application of WP:ELNEVER/WP:COPYVIOEL. I see this as a slippery slope situation, where we are made to censor Wikipedia on the grounds that we can not link to external materials, even ones that are so heatedly debated as this.

The link in question is currently given in the Buzzfeed article at [15]

Discussion started at Talk:Donald_Trump–Russia_dossier#External_links, please comment, but feel free to continue here.

(It may be useful to try and centralize discussion here to get as many voiced in on this as possible)
Ping Ryk72 & JzG

Best, Carl Fredrik 💌 📧 19:57, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

  • Good grief, this is the wrong question IMO. Copyright should not be preventing us from linking to a document like this. Common decency and BLP might well be good reasons however. Hobit (talk) 21:46, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
I believe that any of the three reasons is sufficient; but would argue based on the two which are grounded in policy. - Ryk72 'c.s.n.s.' 22:16, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
  • Comment - In this instance, the link in question is to a reproduction in whole of a dossier, a creative work, presented without commentary or transformation; hosted on The creator of the work is unverified, but reported to be Christopher Steele; the copyright holder may be Steele or may be the parties who paid for the work. The copyright holder is clearly neither BuzzFeed nor
    WP:COPYVIOEL restricts editors from linking to material that violates the copyrights of others per WP:COPYLINK; and provides the following criteria for links to external sites that display copyrighted works: the website is manifestly run, maintained or owned by the copyright owner; the website has licensed the work from the owner; or it uses the work in a way compliant with fair use. The link in question is to a website which is not manifestly run, maintained or owned by the copyright holder; does not assert a license from the copyright holder; and given the reproduction in whole, the absence of transformation or commentary, does not meet fair use. It satisfies none of the criteria for linking.
    Use of the work in news reports, commentary, op-eds, etc., where reproduction is both in part and transformatory, does satisfy the fair use criterion, enabling us to link to those websites.
    The final paragraph of WP:COPYLINK is instructive on this difference: Context is also important; it may be acceptable to link to a reputable website's review of a particular film, even if it presents a still from the film (such uses are generally either explicitly permitted by distributors or allowed under fair use). However, linking directly to the still of the film removes the context and the site's justification for permitted use or fair use. The link to the untransformed reproduction in whole of the dossier is analogous to the direct link to the still image. - Ryk72 'c.s.n.s.' 22:11, 18 January 2017 (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.