Wikipedia talk:Featured article candidates/Archive 19

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Plastic Duck-shooting

This page is basically a shooting gallery. No, it's worse than a shooting gallery, it's like a drive-by shooting gallery or something. You have certain people who do nothing else but hang around all day and nitpick at every imaginable stylistic detail of other people's voluntary, often extremely knowledgeable, exhaustively-researched, meticulously documented and formatted work. These same people do not provide content themselves; they just sit around all day and nag at your excessive use of parens or semicolons. On the other hand, there are certain types that are having a hard time with their own FACs and feel the need to take out a little bit of their frustration and bile on other people's hard work. All of these folk object to your article, citing two or three examples of what they don't like and then disappear from the scene like drive-by shooters passing by a shooting gallery. They tell you to go to peer review where you get no response or where some semi-literate folks actually worsen the article and give you counterproductive advice. (this has happened to me three times in Peer Review). Sometimes they tell you to do a more thorough copy-edit and then take off. They tell you write like crap and then they tell you to find someone who knows how to write to their satisfaction.

But the really bizarre thing about it is this: 99.99% of the articles on Wikipedia will never be submitted to FAC in the first place. So, while you continue to increase the standards to the point of impossible stringency for the top 0.01% of articles, the rest will remain overwhelmingly illiterate or semi-literate crap because no-one will ever even notice it unless it passes through FAC. You need to deal with the 99.99% of absolute hogwash that is on Wikipedia, not snipe at the 1 or 2% that is not quite up to your (subjectively defined) standards of "brilliant prose." If I want brilliant prose, I read Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy or Maupassant, not the Encyclopedia Britannica. Focus on factual accuracy of content, verifiability, precision, NPOV and structure. Lay off the obsessiveness of uses of "that and "which", unless you are going to make the same adjustments to ALL of the articles on Wikipedia. Good Luck!!! As the article in the New Yorker out it: Wikipedia is a source that is sometimes right, sometimes wrong and sometimes illiterate. Work on the "wrong" part and the "illiterate" part and stop picking on people who have spent their entire lives studying and writing, but whose prose style is a little bit long-winded or technical or whatever for your tastes.--Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 12:52, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

I appreciate your frustration, but don't submit articles to the FAC process unless there's a semblance of professionalism about them. FAs have an elite status for a good reason: to set a standard for all WP articles. Whether that standard trickles down to articles at large is difficult to measure, but my guess is that it does have a positive effect.
Don't expect to be able to prepare a candidate without considerable experience as a writer/editor and WPian. That situation is entirely on purpose, and an inevitable result of our two-tiered system. I'm sorry that Peer Review and Good Article processes are usually ineffectual; it's inevitable, given the voluntary nature of WP, that the few good reviewers we have should congregate in the FAC and FAR/C rooms.
There are two solutions to your problem. One is not to submit FACs; the other is to embark on the process of becoming a better writer/editor. The second option is not easy, and takes considerable time. However, I encourage you to do this, because it will bring you many advantages in life. I hope that this explanation clarifies the situation, and that you're no longer angry. Tony 16:13, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
"Don't expect to be able to prepare a [succesful] candidate without considerable experience as a writer/editor and WPian" -- this should be posted somewhere obvious. Jkelly 16:30, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
A giant flashing banner across the top of FAC? ;-) Kirill Lokshin 16:34, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
A pop-up when you enter FAC? Joelito (talk) 16:35, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
I love it...let's simply tell people that they don't know how to write and to forget trying to create articles and nominate them for FAC...let's even post that unless you agree with a few high minded reviewers here about how an article should be written, that your article will have no chance of being promoted. Prose is definitely important but is secondary to WP:NPOV, WP:V and WP:NOR...read the policies regarding this before telling people basically to go to hell if they don't write according to some self appointed FAC reviewer criteria about "prose".--MONGO 17:14, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
That's not really the issue, I think. All articles must meet WP:NPOV, WP:V, and WP:NOR; it would be somewhat unproductive, therefore, to say that an article is "our best work" merely for satisfying those criteria. Once the bar set by the fundamental policies is passed, the quality of an article is increasingly dependent not only on the content itself, but also on how well that content is presented to the reader. I don't really see anything wrong with making it clear that an article which passes through FAC successfully needs to be well-written in addition to being neutral/verifiable/sourced/etc. Kirill Lokshin 17:19, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
I never said it shouldn't be well written...did I? I said that prose is secondary to the policies I linked...and this is because this is an encyclopedia effort. But just telling people that they should nominate articles at FAC either because they are newbies or don't have backgrounds in critical review of books and manuscripts is definitely unwiki and not helpful in our efforts to encourage editors to continue to contribute.--MONGO 17:43, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
I don't think we were being entirely serious in the above conversation. But even if we were: we do want to encourage editors to contribute, but we don't want to give people unrealistic expectations about the ease of the process. I don't see anything wrong with making it clear from the outset that the process can be quite demanding, and that editors with little experience with either formal writing or Wikipedia conventions will often find themselves (unfairly, in their view) overwhelmed by the criticism their nomination garners. Kirill Lokshin 17:49, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Mongo, I don't understand what this is all about. Some Wikipedians have a talent for writing "brilliant prose", and some don't. Some Wikipedians have a talent for impeccable referencing in their fields, others are very good at tracking down freely-licensed images, others have good layout skills, etc. An FA is the very best of Wikipedia, and we expect a collaborative effort resulting in excellence. We really shouldn't be telling editors to expect to be able to sit down and knock out an FA-quality article by themselves. It is possible to do, but it isn't a realistic expectation for everyone to have. It is genuinely okay to say "everyone is welcome to contribute" and to also have very high standards for what we call our best work. Jkelly 17:53, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Again, let's not put in words I haven't stated. I am somewhat concurring with Lacatosias here, but I do agree that articles should be written as well as they can be (and I am sure he does as well, for that matter)...but that is very subjective, is it not? That is WHY the policies that bring us the greatest affirmation by the outside world are based on verifiability, neutral point of view, factuality and our use of reliable witness. I definitely concur that articles should be well written but I, for one, am worried when the critical analysis of FA's is trending more towards subjective opinions on prose and less on what our policies demand. I am simply trying to reiterate the need to continue to demand that our FA's follow policies more than some arbitrary opinion based on prose.--MONGO 18:30, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Some things are certainly subjective. I've seen objections over having a "See also" section and objections over not having one. There's something wacky about that, and our consensus guidelines should take precedence over individual preference. I suspect that there's a larger point of disagreement, however. I'm really willing to say that, for instance, there are many points of grammar, and good writing in general, that are not at all subjective. Subject-verb agreement, for instance. Some "good writing rules" aren't accepted by everybody, but I don't think editors here regularly object based upon a split infinitive (although I've brought up passive voice once or twice, I'll admit). Most prose objections here are based rather firmly on clarity ("What or who is the subject of this pronoun in this sentence?") and other fairly reasonable criteria. Perhaps a WikiProject Copyediting should be put together, if we can volunteers, and/or come up with a list of the most common prose errors that can be checked for in peer review. Jkelly 18:44, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
That sounds like a great idea for a wikiproject so long as the scope and direction are well defined...I strongly encourage anyone working on FAC to send them through peer review, which does work to a degree, but since it isn't a promotional thing there, the advice offered doesn't have to be followed in the same way as it does here. I'm just worried, since I have started to see more of this, that fact checking and reliability of sources are not being subjected to as rigid a scrutiny as they once were, and that instead, we are getting caught up in more stylistic issues. Maybe this is a natural series of events, in that credible reviewers have come here now to truly say that our writing quality is in serious need of help...that's fine, so long as we don't yell it too loud...at the expense of losing the primary focus of quality of information provided.--MONGO 18:54, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

How do you explain the fact that I already have written one Featured Article philosophy of mind and I have written about 7 or 8 GAs. I think there's more than a little subjectivity in the process, don't you?? Another article, Hilary Putnam, has been praised by Hilary Putnam himself and, if I can deal with a few small objections, seems to be headed toward FA status. I have been a Wikipedian longer than you have!! Look at my contribs!! You wonder why I'm angry.Give me a break.--Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 16:39, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Yeah, I wrote every word of it. I also have had my writing (in Italian, second language!!) published and praised here in Italy, BTW. --Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 16:44, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Actually, your comments here (as well as here) suggest that there are a few minor points of style—particularly in regards to the use of profanity and a properly courteous tone—that you might be able to improve on. Kirill Lokshin 16:55, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
Profanity?? Have you ever read James Joyce?? Courtesy?? Have you ever read Mark Twain or Jonathan Swift, Nietzsche??--Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 17:01, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Please take a time out and come back when you are calm. Joelito (talk) 17:05, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Francesco, I'm saddened to see that FAC has upset you. I am very impressed by the level of inline citations in philosophy of mind; if you'll orient your efforts with Putnam and Fodor towards attaining that same level of FA quality, you should have no problem. Please do not take it personally. Sandy 17:10, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Thank you. I'll do the best I can.--Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 17:18, 31 July 2006 (UTC)
I apologize for the inappropiate use of profanities (there are appropiate and inappriate uses of profanities, I think) and the discourteousness of some of my comments. I am a very hyper-sensitive person who has suffered a great deal in life from depression and other problems. This is not a justification, only an explanation, of course. I wrote an extremely long comment last night wrt the discussion above. However, it got eaten up in an edit conflict, as usual, because I'm such a damned slow typist and you folks were putting out about four comments for every one of mine. So, I gave up on it. My basic point is that considerations of pure style (not subject-verb agreement and other basic rules of grammar) but such things as sentence length, use of parentheses and unexplianed "wording" problems have a profoundly subjective element to them. I think this is undeniable. Most of the criticims that I received for Jerry Fodor were compltey of this nature. They were not crticisms of violations of the rules of grammar or incompetence of usage. They were not even criticisms of peacock terms and other such Wikipedia policies. I still cannot find a single example of a Peackon word or expressions like "some say" "they believe" and so on. They were all criticisms essentially of wordiness or something like that. Well, there are some people who think Finnegan's wake is "brilliant prose" and there are some who think it is complete nonsense. I once had an outstanding Engloish professor who never saw a lengthy sentence that was too lengthy. He was a Faulknerian.

Another point is that THIS is an encyclopedia. Encyplopedia 's are not particualrly charaterozed by the brilliance of their prose. Neitzche wrote brilliant prose, but the author of his entry would probably be behaving irresponsibly and engaing in OR if he were to try to write "brilliant" metaphors and similiatudes in an Encycloèedia entry on Neitzche. The prose is boring. I don't have the link. But, it seems to me, that is about as it should be. Stylistic considerations should never trump questions of substance, accuracy, knowledge and clarity. It is just one factor among the many others: stability, amount of research, factual accuracy, exhaustiveness, organization, illustration and so on.--Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 11:06, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

I just realized my objection (and another) was struck in error. I unstruck them, pending my review of the article. Francesco's response on my talk page (below): Sandy 15:32, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

I have to say I share some- if not most- of Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias' concerns and thoughts on the FAC process. Having spent a very long time working on an article myself, putting it through a Wikiproject Peer Review several times to get feedback, and then submitting it here only to get responses which paraphrased as "Your paragraphs suck". Not an offer to help fix them, just a dismissive "Bah!" and onto the next FAC for further nit-pickery. No arguments that there weren't enough citations, no problems with the content, just grammatical nit-picking and pedantry. Has it occured to anyone that the relative lack of new FACs is because people don't like having their work torn to pieces by people who, in all likelihood, have absolutely no knowledge whatsoever of the subject they are critiquing?
Maybe the FAC process could be farmed out to the various WikiProjects, to ensure potential FACs are evaluated by people familiar with the subject matter as well as editorial policy? --Commander Zulu 03:41, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Lack of nominations? Read the rest of the page: we're talking about dealing with too many nominations that aren't ready for FAC. Help from the WikiProjects? We've discussed that, too. The problem that peer review doesn't give adequate feedback for an FA? That, too. Keep reading. Francesco's FAC is not at all a typical one. He was frustrated that one FA didn't go through, and he nominated a second article that wasn't ready, just to see what we'd do with it (read the first line); it had not a single citation when he nominated it, and he's had to back peddle to get it ready. It has not been a typical FAC, but the fact that he will emerge with an FA is a tribute to the review here. Sandy 03:50, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Stop playing this game

Double-chekcking strikes?? I don't have time now to look over the article. It takes two seconds to look and see that the article is EXTREMELY WELL-REFERENCED!! The objection is wrong!! It is YOUR responsibility to strike it out. You are not double-checking anything. You want this to fail and I do not undertand why?? Thanks so much for your kindness and assiteance, Sandy!!.--Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 15:23, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Policy check

This troubles me. I'm not sure if Francesco realizes this very personal commentary on his own life will stay on the article's record, regardless of whether it passes or fails FA. I'm wondering if Francesco wants to review, and I'm wondering about the policy of possibly deleting this section???? There's not much in the section which pertains to the actual FA, so I'm hoping Francesco could have the option of deleting it from the FA, if he chooses. Perhaps I shouldn't be putting my nose into Francesco's business, but he may not be aware of the Google-fiability of this personal commentary. Sandy 14:33, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

Maybe this should go on the Administrators' Noticeboard as the issue may require input from other admins. He seems to have lost conrol of himself in this case. So much personal information out there is not useful for him or for the FAC in question. (just my opinion) - Aksi_great (talk - review me) 14:41, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
Hmmm.. now why do you think that this particular personal info might be harmful to me and to the FAC? Do you think there is something I should be ashamed of in there? --Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 09:11, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
No, no. You got me wrong. I have heard of some cases of off-wiki harrasment due to published info on wikipedia. I thought you may want to delete the personal information - that's all. Sorry if it seemed that I was attacking you or something. - Aksi_great (talk - review me) 09:31, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
No, I didn't get you wrong actually. I knew what you meant. Don't worry about it. (-: I just wanted the opportunity to clarify that I'm not ashamed of my past (on the contrary!!) and that I don't care about google-fiability and so forth. If someone were to judge me negatively on the basis of that sort of thing, then they are not the kind of people I would want to have anyhing to do with. Except to try to prove them wrong, perhaps. --Francesco Franco aka Lacatosias 09:43, 9 August 2006 (UTC).
But, I think he's regained control, and it might just be up to him as to whether he wants to delete this? I'm hoping Raul will give us an idea ? Sandy 15:06, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
Note that he has posted the text on his talk page. It's up to him if he wants it to stay there, but if he wants it deleted from the FAC page, the history should probably be cleansed too. Gimmetrow 15:26, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
No, Gimmetrow, I hadn't realized that. Well, considering that news, I guess I shouldn't put my nose into it. <sigh> ...
PS - I hope to find time soon to look at your FAC. You've certainly been patient. Sandy 15:33, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
My FAC has grown over 40% since I submitted to FA ;) At some point in the future we could mention to Francesco the idea of deleting that section and expunging the history from the FAC subpage and see if he objects; the page could benefit in other ways from refactoring. Gimmetrow 19:45, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
Maybe you can suggest that to Francesco?  :-) The second section also contains little information: for some reason, he recopied all of my content from the top of the article. Sandy 19:47, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

Changing the rules of the game

Is it okay if editors go about changing the rules (Wikipedia Manuals of Style), once they find that the articles they have submitted for FAC don't follow some guidelines. I find that User:SlimVirgin is doing just that after some of the editors (including me) pointed out issues with the article. She went about in a policy editing spree (undiscussed) and made sweeping changes to the style guidelines. She was reverted at a few places, but she also got away in some cases. I find it odd to see such behaviour from a senior editor of the project. Whatever happened to the "discuss before you change" guideline. Diff(s) applicable:WP:CITE, WP:MOSDATE, WP:LEAD, and many more. — Ambuj Saxena (talk) 13:41, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

Err, some context here would be helpful. The changes don't look particularly controversial on the surface; is there some particular article they're being made in reference to? Kirill Lokshin 13:48, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
These changes were made when the issues concerned were raised in FAC of Rudolf Vrba. She changed the rules of when date-linking should be done, how sources should be cited, and what should be there in the lead. — Ambuj Saxena (talk) 14:05, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, (i) the cite templates are not required (and neither is any other type or format of citation, so long as one is given) although some people think they are preferable; (ii) I think bare "month day" or "day month" references should be linked, otherwise users' date preferences do not work (although there are arguments over whether individual months or years should be linked - my preference is not); and (iii) I don't see what that paragraph adds to the description of the lead section in the first sentence of the second paragraph "The lead section should provide a clear and concise introduction to an article's topic, establishing context, and defining the terms".
So, 2-1 to User:SlimVirgin. Next? -- ALoan (Talk) 14:19, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Wow. Sweeping changes? Policy editing spree? :-)
  • (1) I edited the MoS to clarify that there has to be a year in order for date-linking to be recommended, although people may link others if they want to; that is how it has always been since I've been editing, to the best of my knowledge;
  • (2) I've been editing WP:LEAD for some time, and haven't changed anything recently: on the contrary, I have reverted changes, which is what the diff above shows.
  • (3) I did not change anything about how sources should be cited. I added to the citation template page that citation templates are neither required nor recommended, which isn't a change, just a statement of fact.
Ambuj, I find your hostility and presumption of bad faith quite baffling. If you have a problem with any edit of mine, please discuss it with me on the relevant talk page. And finally, you were the only person who raised these issues on the FA page, so please don't talk about "some of the editors" raising them. SlimVirgin (talk) 14:16, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
The issue of problem of lead was raised by other editors, not me. As regards to the other diffs, I do find the changes you made to WP:MOSDATE sweeping. Your edit was later reverted by another editor. Although I didn't assume bad faith, re-reading my statements, I feel that it sounded like I did because I made the generalisation of WP:MOSDATE edit to the others as well. I am sorry if you felt offended, though it is unlikely because of :)<--this. To be honest, I am not happy with your edit to WP:MOSDATE, which led to this thread. Anyway, seeing the talk page of WP:LEAD, I see that there is some revert war going on, and perhaps the issue should be discussed there itself. I will contact SV on her talk page, and don't think this discussion would any longer be relevant. I still have differences and am opposed to what you did, but let's confine those discussions to the policy talk pages. — Ambuj Saxena (talk) 15:57, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
What does the "issue of the lead" have to do with your "complaint"? I didn't change anything about WP:LEAD; the diff you gave shows me reverting a change. Are you aware that the article became a featured article before I made any of those edits? SlimVirgin (talk) 16:01, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Note:Partial discussion moved to Wikipedia talk:Citing sources#Citation Templates. BTW, I didn't have any issue with the lead. If I had any, I would have noted that in the article FAC. Since I noticed that issues reagrding lead have been raised by others in the FAC, I saw what changes you made to that page and noted them here. — Ambuj Saxena (talk) 16:12, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Read this very carefully: I have not made any recent changes to WP:LEAD. SlimVirgin (talk) 16:24, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
I'm unclear on exactly what the issue is here, but [Month Date] needs to be wikified in order for date preferences to work. This can be described as a bug or a feature depending on one's perspective on its use to a reader, but it isn't a matter of style preference, and we can't wish it away by writing contrary advice in a style guide. Jkelly 16:32, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
That was my mistake. I thought only full dates had to be wikified. I don't know whether it has changed recently and I haven't caught up, or whether I've been suppressing the horror of yet another instruction and yet more blue in articles. SlimVirgin (talk) 16:37, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
I'd describe it as a bug myself. As for the other edits being discussed above, I don't think that there is anything wrong with them, and I make heavy use of WP:CITET. Jkelly 16:41, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
I wasn't going to raise this in case it looked like sour grapes, but as this discussion has started anyway, I may as well try to make it constructive. I find it bewildering to work for weeks trying to get an article up to FA status (over 10,000 words, carefully researched, 80 footnotes, high quality references) only to have someone object on the grounds of a misplaced comma, or something not wikified to his liking, or his favorite template not used. Moving away from the particular example discussed above (which passed), are there guidelines for making objections to nominations, and if not, ought there to be? In other words, can we prevent editors from lodging objections that some might regard as frivolous? I'm not so much thinking that there might be good articles being turned down for bad reasons, because I don't think Raul or the other regular editors of these pages would allow that; but I do wonder whether going through that experience, or watching someone else go through it, is likely to put people off trying to bring articles up to FA status in the first place. I know that I don't feel particularly encouraged. We're here to write good encyclopedia articles, not to obsess about the use of templates or citation styles. I'm wondering whether that needs to be stressed to candidates and reviewers. SlimVirgin (talk) 17:24, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
It used to be more common for other reviewers to note that an objection was not actionable, but this doesn't happen very often anymore. I suspect that part of the reason was that a user no longer with us started doing it to every objection to their nominations to the point of harassment. In terms of actual promotion, I think that we can rely on Raul654 to ignore frivolous objections. Jkelly 18:02, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
Yes, I agree with your last point. I was thinking it would be nice if such objections could be headed off at the pass, as it were, by a guideline on how to review featured-article candidates. Thinks to look out for; things to ignore; the importance of using a respectful tone if someone's put a lot of work into something; examples of the kind of objection likely to be regarded as frivolous. SlimVirgin (talk) 18:14, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
only to have someone object on the grounds of a misplaced comma, or something not wikified to his liking, or his favorite template not used. I've only been here a short time, but I've not seen that happen (in the absence of other, larger problems). Several times, I have left *comments* (but not objections) about small things. Has there been an article not to pass FA because of trivial objections recently ? Sandy 22:07, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
I'm not aware of one, but as I said above, the issue isn't so much articles failing for trivial reasons (because I don't think Raul would allow that to happen), but people making frivolous objections that I think might serve to put people off getting an article up to FA standard again. Editors shouldn't be putting weeks of research into articles only to have someone start talking about citation templates, date wikification, and so on. If the frivolity were consistent, it would be bearable, but in one nom, you see people objecting because there's no X, and in another, they're objecting because there is an X. I don't watch the FA process regularly, so I'm limited in the examples I can give, and anyway I don't want to focus on specific cases, but I've been looking in occasionally for about 18 months, and the inconsistency and sometimes trivial nature of reviewers' responses has been an issue every time I've popped my head in. So I was thinking it might be time to put up advice to reviewers. I don't have enough experience of the process to write it, but maybe I should start watching it more closely and see if I can cobble something together. SlimVirgin (talk) 22:25, 1 August 2006 (UTC)

<too many colons>
There is occasional crossfire between reviewers who ask for X and who ask for notX, but the nominator just needs to decide which is best and trust User:Raul654 to see through the smoke.

It is the nature of things that you are more likely to get objections than support, and that you are more likely to get either than actual assistance or collaboration in addressing them. I think it is worse on WP:FAR, FWIW. Perhaps you should be grateful if you only get trivial objections - at least they are the easiest to deal with, and it is a backhand compliment that there are no more serious problems that can be identified (i.e. that everything else is fine)! Many eyes, blah, shallow, blah, yes? -- ALoan (Talk) 09:19, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

Yes, indeed. It's certainly true that every time I've been through the FA process, I've emerged from it with a better idea of what makes a good article. Given another 20 years, I might start to get it right. :-) SlimVirgin (talk) 19:45, 2 August 2006 (UTC)

FAC culture

Now that Ambuj's RfA has failed because he expresses his objections too "rigidly", what does this mean? See [1], [2], [3], and [4], and compare with whichever of my FAC objections you'd like to dig up. Apparently the community doesn't like posts like Ambuj's, which of course are of about the same "rigidity" as the vast majority of my objections and numerous other editors. I've been telling people to put citations after punctuation for a long time, long before it was in the style guide, and ultimately, I was the person who originally put it in. I also have extreme problems with the word "very" in an article, as well as using sources like AMG and pokemon fan sites. I'm not alone, either. Tony doesn't mince words in his reviews of people's prose, and he sure gets alot of flack for it. Is all this an indication that something's wrong with FAC? That we're a loose cannon over here, claiming that we're pursuing "excellence" but in reality just disrespecting hard working editors who do lots of research but think that a few minor issues aren't worth fixing? That's the impression I'm getting from a recent FAC I commented on, and it's certainly the impression I get from SlimVirgin. It's pretty clear from the failed RfA that a large number of FAC reviewers don't deserve adminship (of which I certainly appear to be one). I've thought for a long time that FAC was one of the best working processes we've got here, but at least 40 people (the oppposition of Ambuj's RfA) think I'm wrong. --Spangineeres (háblame) 18:51, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

It didn't look to me like his RFA failed purely on the basis of his disagreement with Slim Virgin, so it is skewing the statistics somewhat to claim that 40 people have it in for the FAC reviewers (and the Hilary Putnam FAC can't be classed as a run-of-the-mill FAC discussion by any stretch of the imagination). I think one of the problems with the FAC process as it stands now is that Peer Review and FAC review have moved so far apart. The rigidity (I think that is a fair word to use in this context, although not, I think, a fair reason for opposing the RFA) of the FAC review can be something of a shock after the more casual peer review process. After working hard on an article and revising some minor points based on a generally positive peer review, a slew of "Oppose" comments from the FAC reviewers can be both startling and disheartening. That demand for high standards is not bad in itself - as the number and standard of articles increase, so must the standards demanded by the reviewers, but the expectations raised by positive peer reviews may cause resentment of the FAC reviewers' well-intentioned but downbeat comments. I would suggest that peer reviews for articles that are soon intended to be put up for FAC status need to be addressed in a more formal manner while those that require just general suggestions for improvement could continue to be addressed in the same informal way (perhaps facilitated by dividing the Peer Review page?). In short: I wouldn't take it to heart, you're doing a good job, but be aware of chasm between Peer Review and FAC review. Yomangani 23:30, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
I've raised that issue before on this talk page; it really troubles me when an article comes up here with a glowing peer review, GA status, and we have to send them away for the real work. I really think something should be said about that "chasm" somewhere in the instructions. Sandy 23:35, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
It's inappropriate rigidity that's the problem. Being rigid about high standards of policy adherence (no original research, neutrality, good use of excellent sources) is important. Good writing is important. Having a tidy looking page is important. But being rigid about minor style issues that are entirely optional is not a good thing; nor is making objections (as opposed to comments) that make little sense, and being unable to give examples. Making objections without having read the actual article is inappropriate too. Some reviewers concentrate on form; others on content. That's fine, because both are important, but it shouldn't be forgotten that form is a vehicle for content, not the other way round. SlimVirgin (talk) 23:59, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
My question to SV still stands. See [5], [6] (the only strong object I can remember posting; note also my edit summary), [7] and [8] from the same FAC, [9], and [10] . This isn't a protest or a vendetta or anything. I stand by every comment found in these diffs, and if you or others feel these comments would warrant an oppose vote on an RfA, I'll de-admin. I'm not interested in acting as an admin if respected users like SlimVirgin and others feel I'm not appropriate in the role. If you don't think these warrant an oppose vote, please explain how they are different from Ambuj's edits. In these posts you'll see frustration and lots of rigidity. Also, SV, just because we agree on inline citation location doesn't mean that I wasn't being extremely annoying to some people when I was demanding them before they were in the style guide. I doubt such users would see much difference between the use of cite templates and the location of inline citations.
I do not plan on changing my reviewing style. I have a limited amount of time, and make corrections when I can. I do not attempt to flatter users whose work I tear apart. Anyone feel free: if a user who has no regrets for the above posts should not have adminship, speak; otherwise, explain to me the difference. The only possible difference I see is that I'm worse than Ambuj. --Spangineeres (háblame) 06:25, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
I don't have time to look at your diffs right now, but I glanced at your "strong object" one, and you were saying there weren't enough inline refs, which is a perfectly fair objection. As for ref locations, do you mean the inside/outside punctuation thing? If so, all publishers put their footnotes outside periods/full stops and commas, so for us to do otherwise would look very odd. I don't see that point as at all comparable to insisting on the use of citation templates which are, at best, a nuisance, and at worst are a make-work device that serve only to make pages harder to edit (and are not regarded as required).
Most importantly, putting these details aside, I disagree with the attitude of "tear[ing] apart" anyone's work. Most people put a lot of effort into writing potential featured articles. Even if they've gone about it the wrong way, they should be applauded for that effort. That's not being patronizing; it's being respectful. Professional writers are used to having a knife and fork taken to their work by editors, but most people aren't, and it comes as a shock. And bear in mind that editors are normally professionals. Our FAC reviewers aren't, and so they aren't always right in their criticisms. That makes it hard to hear when it's (a) harsh and (b) wrong. Therefore, I think a little humility is required all round. Yes, it's important to raise the bar. Yes, good writing in particular is very important, because it's one of Wikipedia's great weaknesses. But tearing apart work that people have tried hard to get up to scratch is not the way to achieve improvements, because it will drive good editors away, and stop others from attempting to achieve FA status for their work. SlimVirgin (talk) 06:50, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
I agree Sandy, the The path to a featured article infobox on the Peer review page is entirely too simplistic: it doesn't even mention GA status, let alone what a savaging the article will get here ;). I think the FAC page should also explain the FAC review process in more depth (what you can do to get the article up to spec during the review, whether "Oppose" is a death sentence, when you can resubmit etc.) Yomangani 00:19, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
So, where can we propose some changes, or discuss consensus? I'm really tired of sending away hopefuls who really thought they were ready for FA. We should give editors a better idea of how to prepare. Hilary Putnam came up here without one single inline citation: it will emerge FA, but this was too painful. Sandy 00:27, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
I suppose right here, but we should put a note on the Peer Review talk page too (and start our own thread here). On a related note: I believe somebody started up a less formal version of peer review aimed at making suggestions for general, less stringent improvements to listed articles, but I can't find it. Yomangani 01:07, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
Why not push some of the responsibility off to WikiProjects? Just add a note suggesting that nominators (particularly first-time nominators) ask the relevant project to look over the article before nominating it; some projects already have dedicated peer review processes for this type of thing, and even those that don't should be able to catch the more obvious problems at a glance. Kirill Lokshin 01:14, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
Have you seen how much success we've (not) had with the Projects over on WP:FAR, in spite of my notifications on every review? Sandy 01:23, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
Some WikiProjects are just better at quick turnarounds than others ;-)
More seriously, we wouldn't be asking them to do any actual article improvement, but rather just to act as a sanity check for certain basic quality requirements. I think most of the active ones ought to be able to manage that. Kirill Lokshin 01:28, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
Well ... the Philosophy folks were all behind Putnam, and we had to drag it up to snuff step by painful step here. The Project wouldn't have helped. The Indian projects are still trying to locate good copy editors. The Hurricane Project articles sometimes need work ... and so on. Methinks sometimes the Projects may be too close to their own work. Sandy 01:35, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
I certainly don't think it is a bad idea to encourage them to try the relevant project first. If they don't get a response they can list at the "general" peer review, but it may help to weed out some obvious "failures" (ouch, did I say that?). Yomangani 01:40, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
The infobox at peer review does seem to be part of the problem. It reads as if the next natural step after PR is FAC, with no instruction about the "chasm" in between. Sandy 01:41, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
See below. Yomangani 01:50, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
  • So it all boils down to this, doesn't it:

Reviewers—We think the standard of many FACs is inadequate.

Nominators—We think the FAC process is too tough, and we don't like it.

Looks like a healthy, dynamic process to me, but it would be wise to communicate the reality of subjecting your work to close scrutiny at strategic places in WP. As an aside, I'm gobsmacked that nothing is said about the RfA process, which often resembles a medieval trial. No talk of reforming that ... Tony 16:23, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

Well, as a first time nominator, I'd paraphase Goldilocks and say "exactly tough enough" but judging from the reaction of other nominators, I'm in the minority. Of course, satisfied "customers" rarely comment.
I was thinking of proposing Trial by ordeal as a friendlier form of RFA. Would you support? Yomangani 16:34, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
I think that's an apt description, but there are two sides to that story as well. Just as we have a problem with some FAs going through because a number of "fans" support (often leaving me wondering if they've actually read the article), some RfAs are on an express track and there is no point in bothering to oppose. It sure seems like a much more flawed process than this one, because some admins do go on to abuse the mop; at least FAs that might not deserve the star don't have the potential to do damage. By the way, I find RfA such an unhealthy place, that I regularly try to avoid it. Is this whole new proposal for guildeines for reviewers also about Saxena and not so much about Putnam? Sandy 16:50, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

Rough revised steps

I propose the steps to FA status should be closer to this:

  1. Start a new article
  2. Research and write a great article
  3. Check against the featured article criteria
  4. Get creative feedback for GA status from the relevant project (or general peer review)
  5. Review and edit your article in light of the feedback
  6. Apply for GA status
  7. GA status
  8. Get creative feedback for FA status from the relevant project (or general peer review)
  9. Review and edit your article in light of the feedback
  10. Apply for featured article status
  11. Review and edit your article in light of the comments made by the reviewers
  12. Featured article

Obviously we also need to include more info on how the FAC review process works as well, and to propose dividing the peer review into sections: FA,GA, and general improvements Yomangani 01:50, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Just found User:Taxman/Featured article advice, which needs an update. One problem with this scheme is that very long articles aren't eligible for GA. (I think?) The other problem is that reviewers on PR are not giving adequate feedback about prose, references, neutrality, or comprehensiveness, so the editor often has little to review. An additional step may be to look at similar FAs, but some of those aren't helpful either, as so many need to be FARC'd. I'm not much help, am I? Sandy 01:55, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
I'd revise it somewhat:
1. Start a new article
2. Research and write a great article
3. Check against the featured article criteria
4. (optional) Get creative feedback for GA status from the relevant project (or general peer review)
4a. Review and edit your article in light of the feedback
4b. Apply for GA status
4c. GA status
5. Get creative feedback for FA status from the relevant project (or general peer review)
6. Review and edit your article in light of the feedback
7. Apply for featured article status
8. Review and edit your article in light of the comments made by the reviewers
9. Featured article
There's no need to give so much emphasis to GA status (which tends to be very easy to gain), in my opinion, nor to encourage people to have two separate review sessions split by the formality of a GA tag. Kirill Lokshin 01:56, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Proposals:

  1. That the infobox on peer review be changed to reflect the above steps (per Kirill Lokshin)
  2. That an article must have completed the lower steps in order to be approved for one of the higher steps (an article may not be put forward for FAC without being GA, must have had a peer review to qualify for FA, etc.)
  3. That the process of FAC be explained more clearly on the FAC page (warning editors that it is a rigourous review and explaining what it entails)
  4. That the general section of the peer review page be divided into sections for those wanting FA,GA, or general reviews
  5. That editors be encouraged to relist peer review requests in the appropriate specialized sections where applicable.

Yomangani 02:05, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Point 2 (in particular requiring GA status for FAC) was debated and rejected just a short while ago. I don't really see the need for it. Kirill Lokshin 02:10, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Unless the level of scrutiny provided by the GA process has dramatically changed since last I checked, I don't think it is a particularly useful step to recommend to budding FA authors. Christopher Parham (talk) 02:35, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

GA and PR aren't very helpful in getting articles ready for FA, even if they are necessary steps. We need to focus not so much on the steps, but on expectations here. Sandy 02:41, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

I know Kirill has been saying it, but it needs echoing: PR and GA are not and in my view categorically should not be required steps. —Bunchofgrapes (talk) 02:51, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

I agree. I would strongly oppose forcing people to go through these extra steps, which are often pointless, and which can actually lead to deterioration of the article. SlimVirgin (talk) 03:29, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
I would also suggest that any revision of FA nomination requirements include advice for reviewers, so that no party's expectations are too high or too low. SlimVirgin (talk) 03:32, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
If GA candidacy or peer review leads to a deterioration in quality then there problems with those processes that need addressing, but enforcing those steps seems unpopular so I won't push it. Yomangani 10:30, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Not to sound overly cynical (I have a succesful FA under the current standards) but I think the process might as well be:

  1. Read and participate in FAC for a few months
  2. Based on what you've learned, write an article you think people will support

It seems like that gives you the best chance to succeed. --W.marsh 03:45, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

That's certainly true, but I can't see the vast majority of people doing that. Yomangani 10:30, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
I wonder if it might be more helpful to write up some sort of "Newcomers introduction to FAs"—and encourage preliminary listings on PR (at least for their first nomination) there—rather than trying to put these things into a sequence that many experienced FA writers will simply ignore anyways. Kirill Lokshin 10:52, 5 August 2006 (UTC)
The latter part of your comment is really what I'm proposing with the revision of the steps infobox: the current one makes it appear as if as a newcomer you should expect knock out a FA in a couple days. Yomangani 11:18, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

It seems that enforcing GA before FA doesn't meet with approval. I don't have a problem with that, but I think it should still be included in the "steps" infobox, just to help set expectations. The reason I suggested PR being a mandatory step before FAC review is I envisaged the burden of high scrutiny switching from FAC review to the FA peer review (at that stage the editors are still expecting "negative" comments) and the FAC review becoming more of a rubber stamp of the changes after peer review. Having looked at it a bit more I'd also propose that editors should be discouraged from listing article for GA,PR, and/or FA concurrently. Yomangani 10:30, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

I think it will be best to return to this once the debate over WP:REVIEW has been settled, as it seems to have expanded to encompass advice to nominators too. My proposals were aimed at setting the expections of nominators and "smoothing the hump" between PR and FAC, not proscribing actions of reviewers. Yomangani 22:55, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Yomangani, I just wanted to express appreciation for your effort, and say that I'm sorry to see your worthy efforts sidelined while a misguided permutation saps our attention. I, too, was more interested in "smoothing the hump" between PR and FA. I believe we need to encourage better and more reviewers, rather than placing restrictions on them, and better prepare nominators for FAC. Sandy 12:56, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

I haven't been on WP/FAC in a while, but from what I know, I can unequivocally say that GA and PR should not be mandatory stepping stones to FA status. Articles can be nominated within hours of creation; I have done it on a number of occasions, the most recent being Second Malaysia Plan. There should be no need for GA and/or PR, although IMO the latter should be a recommended step. A small amount of red tape brings order to chaos. A large amount of red tape brings order to a standstill. It would probably be worth more in getting as much attention focused on PR as we have on GA (which is essentially inconsistent in its standards, and useless except as a general description of an article as being "almost at FA level except that its editors can't be/haven't been bothered to go the last few yards"). There is a shocking lack of input PR, and always has been. Now that's a problem worth solving. I can get more constructive criticism on FAC or AfD than from PR. Johnleemk | Talk 15:53, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

  • To throw a hammer into the works, I don't see the point of GA. The mechanistic part of me has always been suspicious about its potential for arbitrary promotion and demotion. After I had a go at the criteria, they're OK I guess, but precariously similar to the FA criteria. But worse, they spread WP's human resources too thinly, when the FAC and FAR/C processes could do with more dedicated help. Then there's the often catatonic PR system. I'd be glad to see GA abandoned and the talent there attracted to this process. Tony 15:58, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
  • I think Johnleemk is hitting the nail on the head. Because GA and PR are fairly ineffective, we are seeing FAC being used in place of PR by editors who want a beefed up version of PR. The idea is to give nominators some guidelines to help them better prepare for FA, so that we can truly focus on FA material. Sandy 16:01, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
  • I have to admit the mandatory GA -> PR -> FA was ill-conceived (that's why I struck it), but the underlying reasoning was that it would prevent editors submitting to FAC as a high level peer review because they didn't receive a response in PR, and to allow the FA reviewers to concentrate on genuine near-FA candidates (perhaps having time to offer some peer reviews as well). GA does need a good going over, but I thought proposals for the reform of three processes was too ambitious. Yomangani 16:14, 6 August 2006 (UTC)
I know GA is not just "FA for short articles" but that seems to be the effect. The only notable difference in GA criteria is that for short articles, there may not be enough prose to rise to brilliance. GA advertises that long articles should meet FA requirements, and suggests submitting long articles to FA. Until recently, long articles (defined as >20k) had their own queue, and remained there a long time for various reasons. "Long" was recently redefined to >32k and such articles are now in the regular queues, but the overall impression is that GA is for "short but sweet" articles. With a volunteer workforce people naturally tend to look at the articles they find interesting. Biographies and pop culture get more response at PR. (Double bonus for celebrity bios!) Unless WP hires a full-time copyeditor, that's unlikely to change. As for WP:REVIEW, the advice for reviewers seems to be covered by WP:CIVIL and a reminder to be sensitive because people may take criticism personally. I think the sensitivity reminder might go the other way too: nominators should be sensitive that criticism of the reviewers may not be taken well. I looked at Putnam rather than some other article for a reason, and I could perhaps feel somewhat upset that my effort was not appreciated. What would really be valuable is a list of things nominators should do to the article before considering the nomination, such as reading the entire article at one time for flow, and another time to remove extraneous words like "also". It should also mention some often-overlooked technical MOS details, such as capitalizations in section heads and location of footnoted/harvard refs with respect to punctuation. Gimmetrow 16:50, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

(verbatim copy from Wikipedia talk:Featured article review) Since I started researching my new article I haven't talked for some time here but I think it's time. My opinion is that the FA process is broken and we must fix it. I must stress that the process and not individual aspects are broken. For example, WP:FAC even with all the recent commotion still serves as a proper filter to promote our best work. However, the same cannot be said of eveything that goes before reaching FAC.

I believe the problem started with GA. GA gave people a lower standard to shoot for. Now we don't need to strive for excellence, we just need to be above average. If you fail to get FA status you get a consolation prize, people get to conform. The establishment of GA was just the beginning. Then came the fights between GA and FA which led to a division among editors. This futher weakened the process. Soon after WP:PR was deserted. No feedback is gained by applying for peer review. Then the last straw came with the streghtening of WikiProjects. WikiProjects are extremely useful but by conducting their own article reviews they further diluted the centralized article review process. Granted, some WikiProjects such as Military History do marvelous reviews and provide a constant stream of excellent featured articles but others get too focused on their "thing" that they fail to produce articles that everyone can enjoy. Furthermore, another review process is currently in the works, WP:RFF. If this process becomes policy then the reviewer pool will be diluted even more and we will be left with a very unorganized reviewing process.

The question is, how do we fix it? I do not have a definitive answer but the solution should be obvious. We must merge everything, scrap all and start anew. GA, PR, RFF, WikiProject reviews, all must be merged. It is my opinion that a centralized review process will streghten the FA process but only by working together will we achieve this. Joelito (talk) 16:20, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

Hey all, can I make a suggestion? So here it goes, first of all, sure the editor must do research and write the article, then check against the featured article criteria. Now the problem is the reviewer projects, RFF, PR, GA, sort of things. From my point of view and based on the fact written there, RFF is like the first place to get feedback, as it prefers more "newcomers' articles and less-developed articles" rather than the developed ones. On the other hand, peer review is like the second stage of getting feedback, after RFF of course. So the difference between RFF and PR is that the articles in PR are more-developed than in RFF, which also the step before the GA. And GA is more of less like PR, but it has a higher standard (so from RFF until this step, the standard is getting higher, of course!). So, FA is like a judgement process, the final decision. Oh yeah, regarding the second opinion above me, RFF is an established process now, as there are quite a number of people contributing and giving feedback. So, here is the list.
1. Start a new article
2. Research and write a great article
3. Check against the featured article criteria
4. (highly recommended for newcomer's articles and less-developed ones) Get first feedback from RFF *
5. Get creative feedback from PR *
6. Get another feedback from GA *
7. Apply for featured article status
8. Featured article

* After get a feedback, of course the editor should review the article

Cheers -- Imoeng 20:46, 6 August 2006 (UTC)

As the creator of the new Requests for feedback, I feel obliged to step in, as some of the comments here are ridiculous.

For example, Requests for feedback is intended for general feedback on new articles. A newcomer may be strong in NPOV and images, but weak at referencing and linking. When he writes his first article, and requests feedback on it, we can inform him of his strengths and weaknesses so he becomes a better editor, while the new editor and those responding to the request can work together to fix any problems with the article. New articles generally are not ready for a demanding Peer Review, and therefore Requests for feedback is the best place to send them.

Requests for feedback therefore aids in editor development and tries to fix up any significant problems in new articles. Peer Review, in contrast, is for "high-quality articles that have already undergone extensive work". Such articles generally do not have any significant problems that could be pointed out in the general Requests for feedback process.

The criticisms of Good Articles are unfounded, and it exists for a good reason. For many articles, getting to Featured Article status will be difficult, if not impossible. A possible reason could be that the article is short because there's not much to write about it. Another reason is that they are child articles or POV forks. For example, History of Mozilla Firefox or Criticism of Microsoft. However, they may be listed as good articles.

Another reason is that Featured Article standards are very high and articles are therefore expected to be perfect. The Good Article criteria is more general, and an article which is of high quality and has some minor shortcomings, or generally good but not excellent, could pass Good Article. The Good Article status will encourage Wikipedians to work on the shortcomings and subsequently bring the article to Featured Article status. Even if the article doesn't become featured, it will still be improved considerably.

Good Articles is also friendly to newcomers. How so? Every day, several newcomers post requests for feedback on their articles on RFF. When I respond to requests, I find that some of the articles show great potential, and in such cases, I will recommend the newcomer work on improving the article to Good Article status. As these articles are fairly close to Good Article standards but very far from Featured Article standards, if I suggested they worked on improving the article to Featured Article standards, it may be biting these newcomers. If they succeed in improving their articles to Good Article status, it would be easier to tell them to improve their article into a featured article.

To merge RFF, PR, GA and FA would completely ruin the system. The problem is that there is insufficient co-operation and integration between the systems, and hence they are not running smoothly. I started a discussion on the village pump on how the four processes could achieve better co-ordinaton and run more smoothly - please participate in the discussion there. I am happy with the current rectangle system:

Processes Feedback Awards
Higher level Peer Review Featured Articles
Lower level Requests for feedback Good Articles

--J.L.W.S. The Special One 05:28, 7 August 2006 (UTC)

I feel obliged to step in, as some of the comments here are ridiculous - not the most constructive criticism I've ever heard, but your comments are as valuable as the next person's, so thanks for making them. Yomangani 11:51, 7 August 2006 (UTC)
Sorry for the mild incivility. The comments I feel ridiculous are those blaming Good Articles for the problems with Peer Review and Featured Article Candidates; and those which suggest merging FA, GA, PR, and RFF - that proposal would mess up the system. --J.L.W.S. The Special One 02:51, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

This discussion seems to be taking a turn towards suggestions for a blanket reform of GA/FA/PR/RFF which in my opinion has as much chance of succeeding in reaching a concensus as my project to build a ladder to the moon. I think we have to take small steps to improve the process. I've outlined the original proposals ((slightly modified to encompass RFF) here: Wikipedia_talk:Featured_article_candidates/New_steps_to_FA so we can discuss each one individually. Yomangani 11:51, 7 August 2006 (UTC)

Final Fantasy IX - better watch the burnouts

How long do you think it will take us to get Final Fantasy IX to the fac room? 2 days, 5 days, one week, or two weeks? Seriously — I'm thinking about slowing it down (I think Ryu is, as well). As Rush stated in Marathon (a great song): "You can do a lot in a lifetime...if you don't burn out too fast". Thoughts? — Deckiller 04:00, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Please do not place more than one nomination at a time — this makes it difficult to do each article and its objections justice. Zzzzz 16:30, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

Advice for FAC reviewers

I've set up a page at WP:REVIEW, which I hope we can write up to give advice to FAC reviewers about which issues are grounds for objections and which aren't; which issues should be commented on; and so on. If both reviewers and candidates can see what will be required, we'll have more consistency and fewer disappointments; and hopefully also less work for reviewers because candidates will come more prepared. SlimVirgin (talk) 09:37, 5 August 2006 (UTC)

SlimVirign, I must ask you to desist your current practice of posting notes on people's talk pages asserting that I've been "incredibly rude" to you. I'm writing this here because your notes appear to stem directly from the discussion on this page.

Please direct your efforts to calming things down rather than inflaming them. Tony 02:00, 7 August 2006 (UTC)


GoodContent's votes

They all appear to be obsolete to me. I believe he's been referred to the appropriate pages in the past. Also, the user has vandalized featured article candidates in the past (but has apologized). Unfortunately, no interest on AN/I, so I'm just giving you all a heads up, but Raul obviously has enough common sense to see through baseless opposes :) — Deckiller 11:43, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

S/he also has four noms up now, but hasn't yet acted on suggestions on first one. (Tobacco smoking) Sandy 12:52, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
And after s/he added Support on my nom too...I may cry...boo...hoo Yomangani 13:24, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
I just realized you're the shark guy :-) I like your article: if you can get Peta on board re: content and resolve the copyedit issues, you've got my support. Sandy 13:31, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Character and Plot sections in fiction articles

Over time, I have become more and more opposed to the idea of having separate sections for plot and character descriptions in fiction articles. Recently, it's become a bone of contention in the Megatokyo FAC. My opinion is that a dedicated character section needlessly and artificially separates character and plot details, which often should or at least can complement each other. Moreover, it seems to me that a good character section is difficult in the extreme to achieve: it ends up either, sparse to the point that it doesn't warrant a section, bloated with fancruft to justify the section, or repetitive of detail contained elsewhere. I suppose what I'd like to see is the presence of unified synopses in fiction articles, ones that treat the whole of the work. Recent film FAs seem to skirt this by mixing character and cast information, though I'm unsure if I like it. Does anyone else have a thought on this? Am I going overboard?--Monocrat 17:27, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

I don't think it's a particularly big issue if handled appropriately. Many story writers see characters as plot elements, just like the setting. As such, I and some others treat them that same way when creating an article, utilizing an overall heading of "Plot" along with sub-headers for setting, characters and story. I've found this style to work really well. For some examples, check Final Fantasy VIII, Final Fantasy X or Chrono Trigger. Ryu Kaze 18:37, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
I dunno. Most of the "Character" sections in both FF8 and FFX seem like they belong more in the "Development" sections than under "Plot." (They're really well written, but it's just that they're out-of-universe segments in predominantly in-universe sections, which is a little disruptive. This is just an organizational nitpick.) Besides, regardless of where they belong, those sections have significant amounts of cited materials showing the origins of the characters. Sections proceed from material, and I can't imagine that most fiction articles have that amount or quality of secondary sources at their disposal.--Monocrat 18:53, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
They were originally under the development heading, but an issue at FFX sparked a reorganization. — Deckiller 19:19, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

There no requirement that you have to have seperate sections. Use your best judgement, with the goal of making it easiest for someone unfamiliar with the subject to understand. Raul654 21:11, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Well, that being the case, I imagine it would be most accessible for the uninitiated to utilize seperate sub-sections in most cases. Ryu Kaze 21:30, 8 August 2006 (UTC)
  • I like character sections because I find them useful as a reader. I've had several occasions to look up an article when I'm trying to remember the cast of a story that I've put aside for a while, or trying to remember something about a specific character. Subjectively, I find the separate sections approach a lot clearer. Another issue is spoilers: When I want to jog my memory about a character mid-story without spoiling the plot, having separate sections makes that far easier (in general). --L33tminion (talk)

IG Farben Building

Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/IG Farben Building: This nomination hasn't had a decision yet, but I can't find it on the main FAC page...is there a problem with the nomination? Newnam(talk) 05:43, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

It was removed by User:Raul654 on 24 July with an edit summary marked "Second pass". He added it to Wikipedia:Featured_article_candidates/Featured_log/July_2006 shortly afterwards, and put a featured template on its talk page. The article appears at WP:FA. There is no longer a star on featured articles, so I'm not sure how else you should know an article is featured. Anyway, congratulations.-gadfium 06:34, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Sure there is a star but in order for it to appear {{featured article}} must be added to the article. Raul654 does not add it, he only adds the talk page template. Joelito (talk) 15:33, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
It doesn't appear for me, using the Classic skin. It does if I log out. It used to appear fine in the classic skin; what changed?-gadfium 05:18, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

Template for closed FAC

I have thought of a template we should have for closed FACs. Some people don't notice the FAC is finished, and often comment in it. We should have a template, like the AfD and other discussions in the following format

The following discussion is preserved as part of a (result) featured article candidate. Please do not modify it any further comments should be made on the nominated article's talk page. No further edits should be made to this page

Article name

--Discussion--

The above discussion is preserved as part of a (result) featured article candidate. Please do not modify it any further comments should be made on the nominated article's talk page. No further edits should be made to this page

Any thoughs —Minun SpidermanReview Me 15:32, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Please change the background color, it is too bright/striking. Joelito (talk) 15:34, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Thanks for your comment. I've changed it to match the usual templates, cheers —Minun SpidermanReview Me 15:38, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
The only problem with the template is the question of whose job it becomes to apply it. I think I'm on safe ground when I say Raul654 isn't going to want to — he already has to make more edits than he'd like when closing FACs. Lately I've been doing the {{facfailed}} tags on the talk pages of the articles that don't make it, and I can't say I'm eager to sign up for the extra work either. Or will this be the sort of thing that only sporadically gets applied, when and if someone cares to? —Bunchofgrapes (talk) 15:45, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
The person who closes the FAC discussions could add the template when its close. For the other FACs, we could just add the templates when we pass a featured article —Minun SpidermanReview Me 15:53, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Raul654 closes all of the FAC discussions. I think adding this step for each one is too much extra work for him. —Bunchofgrapes (talk) 15:55, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Everyone who wants to help with this might as well tag the pages if they want —Minun SpidermanReview Me 16:00, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
I don't have any objections to using a template for such purposes, but I think it should be something that — as Bunchofgrapes said — gets applied "when and if someone cares to". It shouldn't be a requirement, as there's enough work for those involved in closing FACs as is. Ryu Kaze 17:15, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
The template seems very useful to me, but it's true there's a lot of work involved in closing out FA discussions already. Perhaps, if we could find a few volunteers among the FA regulars, Raul could apply this template at the end of a discussion, and another trusted group of editors -- maybe admins -- could be responsible for the rest of it -- applying stars to pages, changing the talk page template, adding new FAs to the FA page, etc. I see no reason that all has to be on one person -- unless of course there really aren't volunteers for that kind of thing. -- (Lee)Bailey(talk) 18:04, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
There could be a FA maintenence project. Raul would still be the chief judge, but others could then do all the little other tasks... that sounds more wiki-like to me anyway. Fieari 21:25, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
So now we need a project to do all the extra work this template will cause? I'm against anything that adds effort and doesn't help write a better encyclopedia. So the question is, how would this help write a better encyclopedia? I don't see it, but that's the best criteria for making the decision in my eyes. Editors are a limited resource and we should do what we can to not distract effort from the main mission. - Taxman Talk 22:25, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
Actually, it seems like the same amount of work to me, just spread out over more people. The only step that would be added is the actual application of the template, which adds some clarity for first-time users as to how the process works and where exactly it ends. Plus, it would also allow the workload to be divided in a way that doesn't put all the burden on one person. -- (Lee)Bailey(talk) 23:39, 9 August 2006 (UTC)
One important question: what problem does this template solve? I have several FAC subpages on my watchlist going back one or two years, and on average, I only see one mistaken comment every few months. None of these edits do more than waste a bit of the editor's time, and a few server cycles. There are better things we can do with our time than creating more pointless red tape. There is no essential problem that can be solved by this template. Johnleemk | Talk 08:53, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

References

On one movie article I'm editing, I have several reliable references to the web and DVD. There are also book references, but they were added by someone else. I know that specific phrases in the article can be referenced with the books, but past editors did not have the hindsight to use inline citations. I don't own the books and I'm not going to buy them solely for Wikipedia, so I'm wondering if not inline citing the books will be a problem for the article's GA and FA noms. However, I've also noticed that several featured film articles, such as Casablanca, have books in their references but do not inline cite some of them. Thanks. -Dark Kubrick 04:03, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

  • If you can verify the same thing from a different reliable source, then use the source you have.--Peta 04:07, 10 August 2006 (UTC)
  • Or you could use one of those public book depositaries that allow you to look at books without buying them... seven letters... begins with an L... -- ALoan (Talk) 11:22, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

It rhymes with tributary but I still can't think of what you're talking about... -Dark Kubrick 20:11, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

  • Libutary? No, I'm sure that is not it...and it has too many letters. -- ALoan (Talk) 20:14, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

Next step

I recently nominated the article Drosera, which failed. [The issues raised] by reviewers were either dealt with (increased inline citations) or so vague/unhelpful that, because my queries for specification remained unanswered, were impossible to address. I have already tried Peer Review ([11]), where only one reviewer posted comments, all of which I addressed. I would like to further improve this article (to FA status level), but am out of ideas of where to go for specific help. Were my questions to the FAC reviewers somehow so unimportant as to not warrant a reply, or was the FAC simply closed prematurely? If this article is not up to snuff, it should have been easy enough to tell me in what specific ways it could be improved. Now I am left with a failed nomination and yet without the tools to ever get this article to the undefined standard you seem to have in mind. Where do I go from here? --NoahElhardt 06:30, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

It looks close now, but I agree that some expansion is required (especially "Reproduction"). You might have got there by networking to locate the right collaborators during the FAC period. Peta would be able to point you in the right direction—both personnel and in terms of the structure and scope of the piece. Tony 08:15, 10 August 2006 (UTC)

Anons nominating?

Just wanted to know if anons are now barred from adding a nomination. user:82.6.163.253 added Tampa Bay Buccaneers [12] which was reverted by user:Zzyzx11 [13] (Edit summary: rv: iirc, you must have an account and be logged in to nominate an article for featured status), before its reinclusion by user:Bole2 [14]. Five people on this prestigious List are IPs. I don't think it is a good idea having anons barred from submission. =Nichalp «Talk»= 19:30, 11 August 2006 (UTC)

If I have been confused, I apologise. The issue that may have led to my confusion is that currently all IPs cannot start nomination subpages. The IPs on Wikipedia:List of Wikipedians by featured article nominations posted on FAC before Jimbo announced that page creation is restricted to logged-in editors. Zzyzx11 (Talk) 02:37, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
I'm fairly certain there're no guidelines preventing IP account listings on FAC. Of course, the listing you rv'd was a very poor listing, and the article itself might have trouble meeting the grade... Personally I'd add it back and let it weather the storm... Thanks/wangi 02:41, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
No, I double checked. I do not see any guidelines per se. So it is simply my confusion because IPs cannot start nomination subpages, or any other page. Therefore, the current FAC system needs to be modified, something like Wikipedia:Articles for creation, to allow IPs to make nominations. Zzyzx11 (Talk) 02:46, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
Currently, IPs cannot complete step 3 of the nomination process because the "leave comments" link is a red link. With any other red link, IPs will always get the "You must log in or create an account to create a page" error message when they click on it. Zzyzx11 (Talk) 03:04, 12 August 2006 (UTC)
It's probably safe to assume User:82.6.163.253 is User:Bole2 who created the FAC subpage - session expired or something... /wangi 11:26, 12 August 2006 (UTC)

Has FAC replaced Peer Review?

Is it just me or have others noticed the number of appalling poor FACs has gone up lately? It seems more and more nominators have no clue of and have not read the criteria. There's one on the page that must be someone's idea of a joke and another that's barely more than a stub...and that's just for starters. How about an AFD FROM FAC process? Rlevse 13:17, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

Maybe it's just me, but I thought the number of quality artilcles being nominated had increased. We had a record (50+ new featured articles) month last month and a quick scan through the current nominations shows a long list of soon-to-be FA's this month. There will always be poor articles being nominated, for various reasons, but I don't think it's over the top at the moment. As for FAC replacing PR .. maybe. The Solar System nomination supports the idea, but I don't think it's such a big problem at the moment that we need to be concerned - many many more articles go through PR than FAC. darkliight[πalk] 13:34, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
Some good points, but take a look at the PRs, it seems to me that they used to get a lot more responses, now they seem to get fewer. For FACs, good and bad, maybe it's because more are getting nominated, meaning there are now more better ones and more bad ones.Rlevse 14:28, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
PR generally only gives an automated bot review, its rare for an article to get anthing more than that, editors like the thoughts of editors. GA is having the same issue Gnangarra 14:42, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
The general peer review, yes. WikiProject-run peer reviews tend to provide more detailed feedback, in my experience. Kirill Lokshin 15:19, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
Yes, Kirill (obviously :) but not all articles can be linked to project that feature a dedicated PR system. -- Grafikm (AutoGRAF) 15:58, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
Yes, unfortunately many of the smaller WikiProjects, and especially the newer ones have no internal PR system. GA is slow, but it mostly seems to work. I wish it had more of a review mechanism like PR/FAC though, where concerns could be posted and then addressed, rather than working on a pass/fail system, but that's not something to take up here :) I agree with Rlevse that I DO wish more HUMAN editors would contribute to PR though. My two cents. --JohnDBuell 22:10, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
Interestingly, I have received more comments and help on how to improve the Ladysmith Black Mambazo article here than at its peer review. --LBM | TALK TO ME 22:14, 13 August 2006 (UTC)
It's inevitable that our editorial/review resources should be concentrated in the peak process. Until WP attracts significantly more people who are willing to perform this role (and can do it well), this is part of the "cost of doing business". Other than slowly beefing up the projects, I don't have a solution. The large proportion of under-developed FACs coming through is a real problem, because it diverts our scarce resources away from the borderline nominations that can be lifted by reviewers' input. Tony 02:50, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

I have a solution but it is highly unpopular. Close all review/assessment processes (GA, PR, WP 1.0, WikiProject reviews, RFF, etc.) and create a single review process where we can pool all of our resources to review and assess articles. Joelito (talk) 02:57, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

Umm, you do realize just how many articles are going through these processes, yes? A single FAC-like page would collapse into utter chaos within days. Kirill Lokshin 03:00, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
I do, and I expected you to be the first to object. After all, the MILHIST project runs one of the most succesful review processes in WP. Joelito (talk) 03:03, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
Hehe ;-)
But if we know that WikiProject-based review processes can work, why not pursue that more actively? There's already a certain amount of passive sharing of ideas going on (see, for example, WP:WPBIO, which is adopting a similar review process), but taking steps to encourage WikiProjects to be more active in this (and other) fields would be quite beneficial. Rather than trying to bring more eyes to WP:PR, for example, try to farm out as many of the requests as possible to the relevant projects; or create some centralized group/noticeboard/whatnot so that active projects can discuss such issues, and share best practices in a central location. In the long run, I think this would be a more productive approach than trying to stick with exclusively centralized processes. Kirill Lokshin 03:21, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
WikiProject reviews work only when the WikiProject has a large membership and is well organized. Only a handful of WikiProjects meet this criteria. What happens then to articles which are not part of these WikiProjects? They have to go to the pitiful PR and they never get properly reviewed. Farming out is not the way to go in my opinion because again it spreads the small pool of reviewers. Joelito (talk) 16:33, 15 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, fair enough, but the real answer is to bring those other WikiProjects up to speed. I've made a start at something to help with this (WP:COUNCIL), but you're right insofar as we're not there yet. Kirill Lokshin 16:40, 15 August 2006 (UTC)
To be honest, I've been thinking along the same lines as Rlevse lately. FAC has gradually been becoming the new Peer Review. With some of the articles I've pushed to FAC lately, I got more advice on the article's talk page than in the Peer Review we'd set up. If a WikiProject is large enough, its own internal PR can be beneficial, but there's plenty of WikiProjects that are either too small to apply (all their members might be working on the page) or just provide too little feedback, such that a general PR process is needed.
Now, I'm not going to say that PR's useless. I know when Final Fantasy X was making its way to FAC, Peer Review proved very useful. But that was also when I was just being initiated into the process and it's been since April. PR's gradually gotten less active in the four months since then. To be honest, I usually don't even stop to think about PR before FAC now. There's really no reasonable and constructive solution to this other than attracting more people to get involved who can provide beneficial input. The only thing that can help the situation is getting what we're lacking... our lacking it, of course, being the problem. It's unfortunate, but it's just the way it is apparently. Ideally, Wikipedia will continue to gain new members. Statistically speaking, at least a few of them will have to have an interest in this, so hopefully the problem will eventually correct itself. Ryu Kaze 03:53, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

I always thought that we should make PR an obligatory prequel to FAC. Especially now with AndyZ very useful bot suggestions, this is really what I think we should do.-- Piotr Konieczny aka Prokonsul Piotrus | talk  20:04, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

Me too. But when you see the average number of reviews on a PR... -- Grafikm (AutoGRAF) 20:31, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

Just as an example, take a look at this peer review for The West Wing (TV series), submitted Oct 24 2005. The page generated tons of responses, helping the article improve greatly on its way to FA status. Now my recently submitted PR about a baseball stadium has only two responses. I thought I would get a better response with a baseball related article! What do we do? One thing that was helpful in The West Wing PR was notifying any user who had contributed more than 3-5 edits to the page of the PR status of the page. I will note that this was helpful only because I had redone the page since most of these people had edited it and the article had a long history. I might suggest adding a section to the PR process like:

Step x: Notify others who have edited this page or may be interested this page about the peer review using {{peerreviewinvite|YOUR ARTICLE NAME}}.

The template might consist of something like "Article XYZ has been taken to PR and I think that you could help to improve this article to FA quality. Your expertise and experience with this subject will be a welcome part of the discussion. Please come to WP:PR/Article XYZ to comment. Thank you so much! ~~~~"

It's simple and it seemed to work on my PR. Plus, others will see the notice on their talk page, possibly sending them to the article, if the subject is of interest. Thoughts on the notify template? — Scm83x hook 'em 06:09, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

The NOTIFY template would help, but the basic problem is lack of editors who are skilled and active. In our Scouting project we now have close to 100 members on our member listing but a huge chunk of them are not very active. I like Kirill's idea of the WPCOUNCIL as experts in an area can review it better but this does not mean others can't contribute as sometimes an "outsider" will see things someone close to the subject matter won't see.Rlevse 10:43, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

Brilliant Briefs?

Would it make sense to have a separate FA-like process for interesting articles that are necessarily brief, but satisfy all the criteria and deserve a higher status than GA? I.e. to encourage the development of short but sweet articles at the highest standard. It seems like the majority of the wikipedia pages potentially fall into this group, but there is little motivation to seek out a high quality standard due to the brevity of the subject. — RJH (talk) 21:42, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

How brief are we talking about here? Even fairly short articles can become FAs, so I'm not sure what type of topic this would be aimed at. Kirill Lokshin 21:43, 15 August 2006 (UTC)
I've seen many comments in the PR section, for example, that a particular article is too short to be an FA. My general impression up to now would be that FA's are fairly lengthy articles with copious details and hordes of references. But as for size, for a first cut I'd say a 500 words or less. — RJH (talk) 21:18, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
That's what, about 3K? I don't necessarily disbelieve you here, but do such articles (of FA quality otherwise) really exist? I can't think of many (any, really) topics that could have comprehensive coverage with so little text; do you have some examples? Kirill Lokshin 21:29, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
A short FA is an intriguing concept. After some rumination, I came up with kilometer. It would need more discussion of where the unit is used, link to square kilometer, and mention events held at that length like running and sprint (cycling). Would this take much more content to be "comprehensive"? Gimmetrow 21:55, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, I would actually merge the thing to metre (along with centimetre, millimetre, and all the other little stubs people seem to have created) as that's where the meat of the content in regard to the unit is (in particular, all the underlying history); at that point, you'd have a much stronger article, in my opinion. But I suppose that's not really an actionable objection. :-\ Kirill Lokshin 22:12, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
What about Coiner? I know I might be a biased source. But believe me, I try to be as un-biased as I can without compromising my values. Žena Dhark…·°º•ø®@» 21:58, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
  • Somehow an article that is currently being debated for possible deletion (I'm guessing it was not when you made this remark) and which contains a dubious fair-use image seems a poor example of something likely to be featured. - Jmabel | Talk 16:32, 21 August 2006 (UTC)
Coiner was put up on AfD on 14 August. Gimmetrow 16:44, 21 August 2006 (UTC)
Well the 500 words was an arbitrary amount; it could as easily be 1,500. Or 1,000 of main text and no limitation on text for references, 'see also's, and external links. In reality I was thinking in terms of journals that publish both full-length articles and shorter briefs. Basically articles that a reader can breeze through in a couple of minutes. As an example (length-wise) take the Roche lobe article. It's an interesting read (for me at least) and could be readily made FA-quality, while keeping it relatively short. — RJH (talk) 17:11, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
Good idea RJH. I think more needs to be done to allow solid articles to rise to the forefront. As an aside, I am concerned that critiques of Wikipedia's quality are often not very well-informed. The value of the Wikipedia project cannot be judged by hitting "random article" ten times, but what alternatives does WP offer to judge and highlight quality? In terms of easily found items, we have 1000 featured articles. That's it, that I know of. Regarding the question of length—not including references, I'd say 500 words should be a rough minimum, not the max, for a "Brilliant Brief". (This is roughly a one-page Word document at default settings.) Outriggr 03:34, 17 August 2006 (UTC)
I'm withdrawing this comment; now that I've been reminded of the article categorization system, I think another article quality category is not so good. Outriggr 02:11, 21 August 2006 (UTC)
I can't see the necessity of this to be honest. If a page meets FA criteria, then it meets FA criteria and should be an FA. There's no length stipulations in the FA criteria other than staying focused on the subject while being comprehensive. Obviously the quantity of text required to do this is going to vary from one subject to the next. However, I'm not too concerned about this giving way to a flood of stubs being submitted for FA. If an article is nothing more than a stub and it's closely related to the subject matter of other articles, then it needs to be merged with those. That would have to happen anyway in order for the article to meet the comprehensive criterion of FA standards (kilometre being a perfect example; it, centimetre and millimetre all need to be merged with metre; the very concept of a kilometre, centimetre, etc. is its relation to the length of a metre). If there really is nothing more to be said about a subject than what can be said in 500 to 2000 words and the article meets all FA criteria, then it should be an FA. Ryu Kaze 15:02, 18 August 2006 (UTC)
I thought kilometre had enough distinct content to be its own article. The metre article would probably suffer with this extra inclusion, unless done extremely well. In any event, I agree that I see no reason for a special category for short articles beyond FA for "comprehensive" and GA for "broad" coverage. Gimmetrow 00:22, 21 August 2006 (UTC)
Also, we certainly don't need another xA-type article classification. As things stand, the concept of GA is still finding its voice. It needs to be established in black-and-white terms how it's different from FA given that much of its criteria seems to be based on FA criteria. I've seen more than one person express an inability to determine exactly how GA attempts to distinguish itself from FA. We don't need to add another classification to what is for some an already confusing mix. At least not before GA has been finely tuned. Ryu Kaze 15:02, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

This is a supremely bad idea, for the reasons Kyu and others above have already mentioned. Raul654 15:05, 18 August 2006 (UTC)

Could the higher-ups add a main-page link to "good articles" then? Why hide the better content? Outriggr 03:25, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
I think this is a bad idea. The FA standards defacto require a certain length (I think the shortest I've noticed is 17K) and I'm any article that means wiki's notability standards could somehow get to that range with some research. While on that note, I've noticed a trend to extremely long articles, even over 100K. I think this is really warranted only on major world events, like WWI. Before long I expect to see, but not be overly thrilled about, 200K FAs.Rlevse 10:48, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
The shortest FA I am aware of is Hurricane Irene (2005), which is less than 9k. Doubling the length of that article would seriously degrade its quality, as it is comphrensive as it is now. Its FAC was opposed on its short length but passed. FAC != AFD so notability should not feature here in anyway in my opinion, just article quality.--Nilfanion (talk) 11:25, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
I have to agree with those who objected...It's so short it's lacking. Not to mention it only uses 11 cites and 5 of them are repeats; just to start with. I'm surprised it made FA. I wouldn't be surprised if it gets FARC'd one day.Rlevse 02:35, 20 August 2006 (UTC)

If this is the case, then I find it inappropriate that anybody is objecting to an FA candidate article specifically on the basis of its length. All the criteria have to say about it is that it be of the "appropriate length". As I see it then, some voters are applying an arbitrary, undocumented requirement. But okay, it's not a problem if this idea is unacceptible. Thanks. — RJH (talk) 15:46, 20 August 2006 (UTC)

i'm saying it's short it's lacking info, but I see no reason to belabor the point. As for the FA criteria "appropriate length" is open to wide variations of interpretation.Rlevse 00:02, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

Five noms

User:BjF has nominated five articles, none of them close to FA. Our instructions now say one nom at a time. Sandy 23:58, 21 August 2006 (UTC)

Allen3 has asked him/her to stop and there have been no new noms since (was only an hour ago though) Yomanganitalk 00:24, 22 August 2006 (UTC)
He just started again. -- Grafikm (AutoGRAF) 22:42, 22 August 2006 (UTC)
And just replaced one that was removed. Yomanganitalk 22:43, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

I removed his latest nom again, but an admin may want to make good on the blocking threats on his talk page. Yomanganitalk 22:49, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

I think the issue here is more getting User:BjF acquainted with what FAC entails than getting ourselves bogged down with stressing the "one nom" suggestion. Some nominators are capable of handling as many as five (I know I was once involved with three that were about to end around the same time as two others were going up), while others — as in this case, where someone doesn't seem familiar with the criteria — might not be able to commit to even one. Ryu Kaze 23:27, 22 August 2006 (UTC)
I agree we shouldn't get fixated on "one nom only", but in this case he has put six nominations in, has no edits other than listing at FAC and his talk page is full of people telling him to stop - not sure what else to do other than remove the noms when he submits them. Yomanganitalk 23:51, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

Just for info: that account has been indefinitely blocked now. Yomanganitalk 11:21, 25 August 2006 (UTC)

Link to Good Article Candidates

I think there should be a link to GAC somewhere in the lead paragraphs of FAC. Does anybody agree? --mstroeck 09:35, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

I disagree. Unlike FAs, Good Articles aren't exactly "official". For that matter, until they've found their voice and clearly defined what they are (there's three factions disputing how GA should be defined at any given time, really), I don't think we should be promoting them from here on the page that strives to determine what represents our very best work. Ryu Kaze 23:30, 22 August 2006 (UTC)
I'll second Ryu Kaze. There are some discussions under way regarding a reform of the concept, so until a consensus emerges from all this, better not to provide a link... -- Grafikm (AutoGRAF) 23:43, 22 August 2006 (UTC)
Third that. Sandy 14:21, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

Duration in nomination

How long an article should stay nominated before it gets the FA status? While some articles stagnate for weeks, even a month, I found some new FAs that were featured after 5-6 days (like New Carissa and Don Dunstan), a very short duration to gather review and comments about the article. So what are the rules? CG 08:34, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

It depends on the amount of objection and on the consensus around the article. Raul usually leaves "cooking" (sic) articles longer if they attract a lot of comments or if there are numerous fixes following objections. A week, or a little less, is a minimum though. -- Grafikm (AutoGRAF) 14:30, 23 August 2006 (UTC)
But 5-6 days is still insufficient. Look at the last FA [[Don Dunstan. The last two votes were comments and not full support and there were made the before it got featured. CG 17:23, 23 August 2006 (UTC)
Why is 5-6 days insufficient? If a clear trend appears, a week is quite enough. -- Grafikm (AutoGRAF) 17:37, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

5 days is ample time for most nominations (2/3's to 3/4's of them, if I had to guess). The ones that are unclear after that much time get left here longer on a case-by-case basis - a system which seems to work rather well. The ones that are on the margin stay here until they get suffecient attention (one way or the other) and the ones that don't get cleared out quickly. Raul654 17:48, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

It's not a consistent exact science, I've seen some with all supports sit there for 2-3 weeks and others with objections get promoted to FA after 5-6 days even though they had a few objections among mostly supports.Rlevse 11:38, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

Removing noms

0111 (talk · contribs · deleted contribs · logs · edit filter log · block user · block log) - who appears to be an overenthusiastic but well meaning newbie - has got several nominations going at the same time for articles which simply aren't going to make it. The editor in question has nothing to do with writing these articles, but obviously likes nominations. I'm wondering, then, can I (admin) delist these, or is it a job only for the FA director? --kingboyk 09:03, 24 August 2006 (UTC)

Two concurrent nominations isn't something to get hysterical over. That rule is there to avoid situations like we had earlier in the week, with someone who had 5 nominations. Raul654 21:49, 24 August 2006 (UTC)
It wasn't so much the number as the quality. And I'm pretty sure he had more than 2, but I might be wrong :) --kingboyk 20:35, 26 August 2006 (UTC)

Reviving the Unfinished work FAC

I tried to revive Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/Unfinished work, but was promptly reverted. My reasoning is that the FAC failed mainly because those that had objected had not yet returned, and that there is still ongoing discussion about the nomination (as shown by my edit a few minutes ago). I don't think it had quite got to a stale state. violet/riga (t) 21:16, 24 August 2006 (UTC)

A guideline

Lately, there have been a couple of cases where article have been posted here without goung through a formal process of Peer review. This in mind, compromises the quality of FACs. Should there be a guideline to address this problem? In this way, the chances of articles being posted on FAC would be of higher quality and more likely to be promoted to FA status. Any constructive comments or criticisms about this would be most welcomed here. --Siva1979Talk to me 08:27, 26 August 2006 (UTC)

No. Peer review is not a requisite for FAC submission. The major problem with PR today is that it does not attract too many comments from editors as FAC does. =Nichalp «Talk»= 16:14, 26 August 2006 (UTC)
That and such a measure would only reinforce the misinterpretation that PR is strictly for getting articles ready to be on FAC. It could also lead to hindering the process of getting an article to FA status if its editors knew they had to go through a mandatory PR that was really just going to waste their time. Sometimes articles would benefit from a Peer Review. Sometimes they don't need it. PR is and should always remain optional. Ryu Kaze 18:58, 26 August 2006 (UTC)
Well, that is true. But what I am suggesting is not mandatory or a policy, but only a guideline. I too agree with you that PR should always remain optional, but there is no harm in strongly suggesting, in a very friendly tone, to the editor in question to send his article for PR first. --Siva1979Talk to me 21:31, 26 August 2006 (UTC)
The top of the FAC page already says "Before nominating an article, you may wish to receive feedback by listing it at Wikipedia:Peer review". Making a guideline of that could only serve to confuse newcomers, and lead to some people delisting nominations or objecting because "They didn't follow the 'rules' and do a Peer Review first". You'd be surprised how guidelines go from less-than-essay status to presumed-policy in less than a second. Ryu Kaze 01:27, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

See above section called "Has FAC replaced Peer Review?". Rlevse 11:40, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

This isn't as big a problem as it's made out to be. FAs are, by definition, supposed to be among the best articles in the encyclopedia, so why should we care that a large majority of articles fail at FAC? That's what we want (well, "want" for some people) to happen, otherwise FAs sort of lose their significance.UberCryxic 18:36, 4 September 2006 (UTC)

Is it ok to write "support" or "object" without writing a reason. Will such votes be striked out?

To quote the instructions at the top of the page (emphasis mine) "If you believe that the article meets all of the criteria, write Support followed by your reason(s). If you have been a significant contributor to the article, please indicate this. If you oppose a nomination, write Object or Oppose followed by the reason(s). Each objection must provide a specific rationale that can be addressed. If nothing can be done in principle to address the objection, the FA Director may ignore it. Be aware that references on style and grammar do not always agree; if a contributor cites support for a certain style in a standard reference work or other authoritative source, consider accepting it." Raul654 07:57, 13 September 2006 (UTC)