Wikipedia talk:Categorization

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WP:SORTKEY's allowance for template categorization seems to contradict what's written at WP:CAT#T. I'm assuming WP:CAT#T would have priority but perhaps we should remove "(tau, displays as "Τ") is for templates" from WP:SORTKEY to avoid confusion. -- œ 06:35, 6 October 2015 (UTC)

There are cases where the Tau sortkey is used (e.g. see how Category:WikiProject Algeria templates‎ is sorted in Category:WikiProject Algeria) so it probably shouldn't be removed from WP:SORTKEY without careful analysis. It might be useful for the paragraph about Greek letters to have a note about it not overuling guidelines as to which pages belong in which categories. Note: User:DexDor/NSCat may help to identify cases where these sortkeys would be used. DexDor (talk) 07:17, 6 October 2015 (UTC)
BTW, about User:DexDor/NSCat, amazing work putting all that together, applause for that! -- œ 20:52, 11 October 2015 (UTC)
Tau is used for templates, so we should keep that. I don't see the contradiction. I think OlEnglish got mixed up between the sorting of templates in categories and the specific location of the templates inside that category. Debresser (talk) 07:39, 6 October 2015 (UTC)
To Debresser: I'm not mixed up. WP:CAT#T states: "Templates should be categorized according to kind of template, but not by template content. For example, Template:Carter string quartets is categorized under Category:String quartets by composer templates, which should be a subcategory of Category:Music navigational boxes (kind) but not Category:String quartets (content)." This is essentially saying that Templates are NOT to be included in categories that are specifically reserved for article content. Yet further down on this same page, we have guidelines on how (or where) non-mainspace pages should be sorted within categories INCLUDING specifically templates but making no distinction there between "kind" and "content"; there is no disclaimer, or exception noted, directing readers back to WP:CAT#T. This gives the reader, who may have happened upon WP:SORTKEY without reading the entire Wikipedia:Categorization guideline, the impression that such sorting of templates along with mainspace content in any categories is allowed. See [1] and [2] for context on how all this came about. I understand that the Tau sortkey is used in certain cases though, so I just think there should be some clarification as to where and when. Regardless, this minor discrepancy probably can be fixed with a short note about not overruling previous guidelines, as per DexDor's reply above. -- œ 20:45, 11 October 2015 (UTC)
Thank you for explaining. I have seen Tau used in maintenance categories. In categories that are specifically for templates, the Tau is not necessary since, e.g., you'd sort Template:Carter string quartets with a "C" as sortkey. Debresser (talk) 08:43, 12 October 2015 (UTC)
Right. So now what about DexDor's argument that non-mainspace pages do not belong under Category:Articles? I happen to agree with him, but then that excludes almost the entire category structure! And If Greek letter sorting under categories that are specifically meant for them is not necessary then wouldn't that make that whole paragraph under WP:SORTKEY kind've pointless? -- œ 13:39, 12 October 2015 (UTC)
There are some non-mainspace pages that readers may want to navigate to - e.g. Wikipedia (community) books. For such pages it isn't (so) unreasonable to categorize them with articles about the topic (even though they are not actually articles) - e.g. see how the beta sortkey is used to categorize the book at Category:Albert Einstein. Portals are another type of page that are aimed at readers and are often placed in article categories. Many categories (e.g. Category:France) have subcats for images and stubs (both using Greek sortkeys) - an argument could be made that these should be removed from article categories, but whilst they are so categorized the sortkey is useful. Hence, the paragraph about Greek letter sortkeys should remain. However, I've not found any case where Wikiprojects (or anything else in the Wikipedia namespace) usefully uses the Omega sortkey so I suggest we comment out that with a note saying that it could be reinstated if there is a use for it. DexDor (talk) 17:39, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
In short, templates sometimes are useful to have in article categories. Therefore, I suggest we do nothing. We are involving ourselves in instruction creep here, I feel. Debresser (talk) 18:47, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
Re "In short...": I never said that (and I certainly don't agree with it). Regarding instruction creep: we should have (clear) guidance stating whether or not templates (for example) belong under Category:Articles (it's in everbody's interest to have consistency). There are many reasons why templates should not be placed in article categories - e.g. cluttering up article categories (sometimes we see that a newbie has created a category just for an eponymous article and an eponymous template), and templates being categorized in an article category instead of in Category:Wikipedia templates. DexDor (talk) 22:11, 19 October 2015 (UTC)
To DexDor: Using that rationale, I would argue that navboxes are aimed at readers too. But WP:CAT#T prohibits it, even using a navbox as an example! I was thinking perhaps we can just alter WP:CAT#T to use infoboxes or some other type of template as an example. That way WP:SORTKEY will not seem to conflict as much, editors can use their best judgment when to categorize templates in with articles, and we won't be involving ourselves in instruction creep. But on second thought, navboxes aren't exactly content in the way that books, portals, and images are. So yes, probably best to just leave it be. -- œ 02:42, 18 October 2015 (UTC)
Navboxes are part of how we construct articles - readers are not expected to want to navigate to navbox pages (which often contain stuff that's only of interest to editors such as "How to manage this template's initial visibility" or other documentation). IMO, we shouldn't start having different categorization rules for different types of templates (navboxes, sidebars etc) - that would complicate things. DexDor (talk) 22:11, 19 October 2015 (UTC)


The WP:DIFFUSE section does not give a reason for or purpose of diffusion of large categories. In essence it doesn't really have any substance other than "categories are divided up by topic". Anyone care to rectify that? SFB 22:09, 6 October 2015 (UTC)

What do you mean? Something like "When appropriate, a large category can be split into smaller categories by topic"? Debresser (talk) 13:46, 7 October 2015 (UTC)
@Debresser: Not really, as that similarly doesn't give a reason. I'm thinking something along the lines of "The benefits of diffusing large categories are..." SFB 18:41, 8 October 2015 (UTC)
Want to make a detailed proposal? Debresser (talk) 18:48, 17 October 2015 (UTC)
Well, the most obvious reason would be to aid readers in finding specifically what they're looking for, quickly and efficiently. -- œ 03:04, 18 October 2015 (UTC)
@Debresser and OlEnglish: From what I can think of we have two issues with large categories: (1) the sheer volume prevents easy navigation (I'd say after +1000 the number of pages you have to go through - more than 5 - hinders navigation), and (2) potentially the broad scope of the category means the articles don't have enough in common to merit direct navigation between the each other. So, I would say the reasons (and benefits) for diffusion are to allow easier viewing of articles in the category and to eliminate articles which don't merit direct navigation on the basis of the given feature (with the implication that articles diffused alongside another article will have more in common, and are thus more useful to the reader). SFB 18:40, 18 October 2015 (UTC)

IMHO, "diffusion" should only be used by orthogonal categories. Wikipedia is on a "categorize everything" binge, I fear. Collect (talk) 16:14, 31 October 2015 (UTC)


template:Images has been proposed for deletion, see Wikipedia:Templates_for_discussion/Log/2015_October_12#Template:Images -- this is a category description template -- (talk) 03:44, 13 October 2015 (UTC)

double categorizing in parent category & in a subcategory that is Non-Diffusing[edit]

This is mostly for the editor TonyTheTiger, but mostly concerns categories, so this text seemed to belong mostly to this category page.

greetings Tony,

This concerns whether the Chris Young article should be double categorized in the parent category Princeton University Alumni in addition to being properly categorized in child subcategories e.g. Princeton Tigers Athletes.

Your view was No -- see here. (I put a note there, pointing Tony to this talk page.)

Yes, 'the general rule [is] that pages are not placed in both a category and its subcategory ... .'

However, 'non-diffusing subcategories ... provide an exception to the general rule ... ' (same source), such that a page should be placed, or can be placed, in both the category and its subcategory.

Such exception seems to apply to the article at issue (Chris Young), based on the following reasoning:

A Diffusing Subcategory seems to mean a subcategory created to reduce the size of the parent category. 'Diffusing large categories[:] a large category will often be broken down ("diffused") into smaller specific subcategories.' source (with italics added)

A Non-Diffusing Subcategory seems to mean a subcategory created for some reason other than size-reduction, e.g. to highlight some 'some special characteristic of interest'. source

Princeton Tigers Athletes appears to:

- have been created not to reduce the size of Princeton University Alumni, but rather to highlight some special characteristic, i.e. Princeton University athletes

- therefore be a Non-Diffusing Subcategory.

Therefore the article at issue, Chris Young, seems like it should be included in both the parent category Princeton University Alumni and in the Non-Diffusing Subcategory Princeton Tigers Athletes.

Another reason for such double inclusion is that the public might not immediately know that Princeton Tigers is part of Princeton University, because e.g. the wording is 'Princeton Tigers', not 'Princeton University Tigers', and conceivably 'Princeton Tigers' could be a team of e.g. Princeton township, not Princeton University.

Maybe this proposed chain of logic is flawed. What do you think? Thanks.

Bo99 (talk) 15:45, 31 October 2015 (UTC)

update: TonyTheTiger replied here. Bo99 (talk) 21:14, 31 October 2015 (UTC)

Your thoughts needed on title change being proposed to history of video gaming console pages[edit]

(this notice x-posted to the Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Categories page as well)

A user has placed a request for renaming all of the video game console generations pages (eg, History of video game consoles (third generation) → Third generation of video game consoles).

These pages are used to categorize eras in video gaming history not only on Wikipedia but due to what some believe is a documentable case of citogenesis, has probably helped form a standard naming convention outside of Wikipedia as well. So these pages have some level of influence and visibility beyond this site.

The reason I'm here is that the current structure of the category names is likely flawed and not up to Wikipedia standard, but historically this often becomes a contentious change debating semantics (the last time this came up it sure did) and I believe that if it's going to be changed it should be changed to a Wikipedia standard form. I just want this current vote to have high enough visibility to get a clear consensus so that we're not back here in a couple of years when the next new crop of editors decides they have a better way to phrase the category titles.

So I'm bringing this debate to a greater audience so we can hear your thoughts and help us video game editors in the process. Thanks for your attention and I hope to see your thoughts on this vote. BcRIPster (talk) 01:08, 14 November 2015 (UTC)

Exceptions in WP:SUBCAT[edit]

WP:SUBCAT has long included this: When making one category a subcategory of another, ensure that the members of the subcategory really can be expected (with possibly a few exceptions{{clarify-inline|date=April 2014|reason=what are these exceptions and where would one find a list and/or explanation of each}}) to belong to the parent also.

The section which I have shown in italics was removed on 24 June 2015 by user:Bilorv.

IMHO it should be reinstated. I doubt that a comprehensive set of detailed principles could be produced for this, but common sense should suffice. Cases of dispute could be discussed on the talk page of the sub-cat, or somewhere centralised if there were broader issues. – Fayenatic London 09:34, 15 November 2015 (UTC)

Common sense already takes precedence over every policy and guideline we have. IAR and all that. The parentheses as they stood contained nothing useful: anyone who doesn't know what counts as an "exception" is left just as unaware as they were before reading this (there is no explanation), and anyone who already knew that there should be exceptions sometimes didn't need telling again. I still don't have a clue what "exceptions" we're talking about. Can you give an example of when you would need to make one? Bilorv(talk)(c)(e) 10:22, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Sure. Category:Yiddish-speaking people contains Yiddish-speaking people by occupation, even though some Yiddish-language writers might be mute. – Fayenatic London 13:35, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Um -- I think that is wrong - "speaking" generally includes people who can either read/write or speak/hear a language. ASL users would be aghast to learn they were not "English-speaking" to say the least. Collect (talk) 14:12, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
Thanks, that's helpful, although not obvious to all. Another that came up in a recent discussion is Category:Jain organizations which is a sub-cat of Category:Religious organisations based in India even though it has two members in North America; the other 10 out of 12 member pages are in India, as are 21 of 22 in the sub-cat. – Fayenatic London 15:00, 15 November 2015 (UTC)