Wikipedia talk:Featured picture candidates/Archive 15

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Archive This is an archive of past discussions. Do not edit the contents of this page. If you wish to start a new discussion or revive an old one, please do so on the current talk page.

The Entr'acte

I found this marvellous Victorian theatrical artist.

Problem: I found LOTS of stuff by this marvellous Victorian theatrical artist.

Anyone see anything they particularly like in commons:Category:Entr'acte? Vanished user talk 21:20, 29 October 2007 (UTC)

I think it's time for a featured set! de Bivort 21:25, 29 October 2007 (UTC)
HA! Well, then! Let me get the last few up - I haven't done the W. G. Grace one and a couple others yet =) Vanished user talk 23:23, 29 October 2007 (UTC)
They're gorgeous. Amazing how they seem to portray their subjects more clearly than the photographs of that era. Great material for articles on the people they portray, though not sure how popular an FPC candidate the seventeenth one will prove... --mikaultalk 23:59, 29 October 2007 (UTC)
Aye. the 17th is rather an extreme caricature - to be honest, it made it the cut simply by being on the same page as the Labouchere cartoon, and illustrating a person who had an article but no photo. Vanished user talk 02:20, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
17th? I only see 9. de Bivort 04:11, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
Reload the page, lad! I kept uploading =) Vanished user talk 09:08, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
Hehe, are you done now then? I was being facetious about the 17th FPC, I actually think the W. H. Denny one is one of the best. But if it follows sixteen other Entr'acte FPCs, I can think of a few reviewers who might be less impressed ;o) --mikaultalk 09:28, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
Ah! I thought you were referring to the current 17th, Image:Lottie_Venne_and_Charles_Brookfield.png - which, unfortunately, is of a type that would make criticism of it justified. Yeah, point taken.
Think it'd be alright to nominate these as a set? It'd be less monotonous and more fun. Mind you, I'll be gone this weekend. Vanished user talk 09:41, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
With half an eye on a PoD appearance, I'd suggest sorting out an article for them all to refer to, if not appear in. For some reason, Alfred Bryan points to a musician – same guy? – while the Entr'acte article is about the theatrical term. Either way, the group nom would be better for having a group article, so to speak. --mikaultalk 10:31, 30 October 2007 (UTC)
What wonderful illustrations! Just look at the one of Charles Dickens; that's my favourite no doubt. It's a pity there isn't an article about the actual periodical... -- Chris Btalk 10:48, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

[Reset indent] This Alfred Bryan died in 1899, the musician lived into the 20th century, so different people. The National Portrait Gallery has a small online exhibit on him, maybe we can use that to make a stub. Vanished user talk 11:35, 30 October 2007 (UTC)

By the way: off to Devon for the weekend. will nominate when I'm back Vanished user talk

When will the oldest of the Wall Street Journal portrait etchings start to fall into the PD? Spikebrennan 15:17, 31 October 2007 (UTC)

Well, the Wall Street Journal is American, so if they're before 1927, they already are. Vanished user talk 15:34, 31 October 2007 (UTC)

Maybe this will be of some use :) --mikaultalk 00:23, 13 November 2007 (UTC)

Just for the record, we do have {{Template:FeaturedPictureSet}} Jeff Dahl (Talkcontribs) 17:28, 29 November 2007 (UTC)

retroactive guidelines and abuse of the fpc removal process

The removal guidelines are in place to rmeove images that clearly do not meet Wikipedia's standard but now it seems that they're being abused because of a group of people's quest to retro-actively apply FPC guidelines to every single FPC that's ever been and delist quite possibly hundreds of FPC's since back in the old days of FPC the rules were much different than they are today. Cat-five - talk

  • First and foremost, I can assure you, at least on my part, that there is no "quest" or organized "group of people." Secondly, I think "possibly hundreds" is unrealistically high. All that aside, IMO the trends that are being observed in the delisting section merely reflect the changes (and improvements) made to wikimedia's picture collection. As the size and the quality of the collection increase, FP standards must inevitably also keep up. That's why a delisting procedure is outlined in the first place; to trim and maintain the FP collection so that the pictures within it still reflect Wiki's ever-changing, ever-improving "best work." To me it seems perfectly normal, especially given how quickly things grow and change on the internet, that FP standards from three or four years ago be far behind the standards today; that is, that many pictures passed in 2003/2004 clearly and obviously would not pass today. And why is retro-actively applying the up-to-date standard such a bad thing? Personally, I don't think the delisting procedure is being abused; I think it is doing exactly what it was designed to do. FP is not about politics and personal interests; it is about enhancing the encyclopedia in a way which some (esp. villain and mad scientist) pictures clearly are no longer able to anymore. --Malachirality 20:57, 2 November 2007 (UTC)
  • I completely agree with Malarchirality. I don't see why evolving standards should not be applied to existing FPs. Our criteria should apply to all the FPs, regardless of when they were nominated. To try keep to our designated standards should be a positive thing, even if it means delisting some images that no longer pass. I think those that are nominating for delisting are (as a general rule) just doing it to contribute to the quality of our set of FPs, not because they have a particular personal agenda. Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 21:15, 2 November 2007 (UTC)

Taj Mahal

Now that that baseball picture is gone, can the Taj Mahal be next? That's been sitting on the candidates page for nigh on half a year now. It's 2½ months since any mumblings about a high-res version. Can it be closed, renominated, or whatever, but it seems pointless leaving it there any longer. --jjron 07:42, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

I would like to second that motion; I'm all for extending a grace period to resolve some issue, but this is going nowhere. I'd prefer to see the nom simply closed, if possible, since people seem worried about 'failed FPC' tags becoming blackmarks. Matt Deres 01:28, 8 November 2007 (UTC)
As negotiations for a hi-res version of this have come to nothing, I've today asked the nominator to do something with it. It should be out of the way really soon. --mikaultalk 10:44, 19 November 2007 (UTC)
Have withdrawn the nomination. Please see the page. Fowler&fowler«Talk» 19:40, 19 November 2007 (UTC)
Thanks all. --jjron (talk) 08:30, 23 November 2007 (UTC)

More whining and moaning about poor nominations.. today's topic: multiple-image noms

Following on from the earlier discussion about FPC nominations with little or no time in their respective articles, I'm on the warpath again (!) over nominations like the Leopard Tortoise one (and others) currently taking up vast tracts of FPC page real estate. I'm all for edits etc of nominations need a crop, or having minor flaws, colour casts etc: this seems to me a very positive sub-process. A nomination with four alternatives as well as numerous edits cannot be conducive to anything other than confusion, inconclusive outcomes and protracted, pointless wrangling.
It's simple: you nominate an image, it gets lots of "oppose" comments, you put it down to experience and set up another nomination. You don't keep throwing alternative images at the thing until (hopefully) one sticks. If political parties did this, the electoral system would quickly descend into a pointless free-for-all with no definitive winner, or end up woth one of relatively poor quality and value.. how we go about discouraging it, I don't know. Nor do I expect it to be a popular proposal, as a number of regulars seem to actually encourage it. I'd like to discuss it, at least.
Side topic: I've recently been trying to simplify the peer review process, where this sort of thing would be fine, even ideal, in sorting out a solid nomination from a collection of "maybe" alternatives. If we can attract weaker noms and first-timers we would certainly, I think, produce more, better FPs for considerably less effort. Any ideas about how best to go about promoting it without getting overly prescriptive on the FPC page?--mikaultalk 18:02, 18 November 2007 (UTC)

I think that it will self correct itself, especially in the instance you mentioned. I contributed to that issue a bit by offering an edit (hotspots bug me, the author asked for help on my talk page, and I was on the fence about the image enough to do so) - but agree on the alternatives and wall of thumbnails. I think the author mentioned his apologies for it at one point, and the inconclusive outcome I bet will ensure a more concise submission next time.
I haven't submitted a photo yet (mine are blurry and not encyclopedic on the whole and haven't spotted one in an article yet that just made me say "wow"), but I just went over the process and right up top is "If you are unsure if your picture will fulfill the criteria, or would like advice on improving your nomination, please consider adding it to Wikipedia:Picture peer review for initial assessment. ". I saw some on the FP page that had been entered and not seconded on the peer review page and some that are passing that did. Perhaps simply bolding that line would help a bit? Cheers, Ryo 14:28, 19 November 2007 (UTC)
Like I said, edits are generally a good thing, so your conscience is clear ;o)
A good number of recent nominations have been quite earnestly looking for a critique of their work, first and foremost, with the chance that it might get featured. It appears to be a potential fast-track to FP on the face of it but the fact is, due to the chaos they cause, this sort of nom fails much more than than it succeeds, which needn't be the case. To steer inexperienced nominators in the right direction, the page needs the sort of thing you suggest (I've actually made that section more prominently pro-PPR quite recently, but it could do with beefing up, I agree) or at least preparedness on the part of regular contributors not only to point out and suggest PPR, but also move ill-considered nominations to the peer review page if they spot them, ideally prior to any votes/comments being posted. --mikaultalk 18:13, 19 November 2007 (UTC)
The problem is that nobody looks at the peer review page- FPC isn't crowded enough yet to need it anyway --ffroth 03:03, 24 November 2007 (UTC)

This may sound crazy, but...

This might not even be the right place to put this - probably better on the village pump or something - but though it's nice to see Jimbo go around the world and make high def videos, does it really do that much for wiki? And yes this may sound insane, but wouldn't it be better for wiki to use some of it's generous donations to something which will directly impact the project? My idea is this: use some of the donations to set up a fund which can give out scholarships or prizes to applicants which can show that they could use the money to make a difference. Now obviously I have an ulterior motive behind this suggestion, and it's simply this: if wikimedia had such a system I could use the money to buy the 400mm f/5.6L (and promise to upload some full res bird pix!) :) --Fir0002 07:43, 22 November 2007 (UTC)

Him going around the world? The only appearance of him in that video outside that stage is in India, and I doubt that footage was shot solely for this purpose, much less being fully paid for by Wikimedia. If you had a look at the donation page, you can see that:
If you and 99 other people donate...
  • $200 – We can make Wikipedia available in developing countries through DVDs, books and pamphlets.
  • $100 – We can pay for two Wikipedia Academy events in Africa.
  • $60 – We can send three students to our annual Wikimania conference.
  • $40 – We can deliver 100 million pageviews of free information!
Now, do you really think that a few more pictures of birds is more important than giving 100 million page views? --antilivedT | C | G 08:03, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
Yeah you're right it was a half baked idea but I thought it was worth sharing and it was useful in confirming my suspicion that you were tracking my edits... --Fir0002 10:55, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
(...or that antilived has WP:FPC, a page he contributes to frequently, on his watchlist...) TSP (talk) 12:44, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
Perhaps he frequents the FPC page but that was only his fourth edit to this page the last one being four months ago! So it did strike as being a little too much of a coincidence that he responded 20 mins after posting this topic (3 mins reading, 5 mins writing = 12 mins delay). But perhaps I am being paranoid... --Fir0002 01:07, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
You do know that if you watch a page you automatically watch the talk page is well right? I don't have to comment on everything that I read, just the things that are relevant to me. --antilivedT | C | G 11:45, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
Yup I do know that, but given the topic was my plan for overtaking wikimania funds it was unusual for you to make such a speedy reply to a page which you hadn't contributed to for some time. But whatever I'm sick of writing in small text --Fir0002 11:18, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
And that geographically we're reasonably close so that our editing time overlap maybe? You're paranoid... --antilivedT | C | G 21:34, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
... Just because the whole world is out to get me doesn't mean I'm paranoid... ;-) --Janke | Talk 14:20, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
It's ok, he follows me around too q_q --ffroth 03:01, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
  • But what good is 100 million page views without any pretty pictures to go along with it?? ;-) That said, if a nice expensive lens was bought for the use of a contributor, I would hope it wouldn't be given to them outright, but rather as a loan. Perhaps as a subsidised comissioned photoshoot.. Then again Fir0002, you don't seem to be doing too badly on istockphoto. How long til you can afford the lens on that income alone? ;-) Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 19:48, 22 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Oh I'm not just thinking in terms of photographic but you know a grant could be used to allow some user who is really proficient in writing articles to buy a small laptop or get a better internet connection or a subscription to Britannica online or whatever. But yes if a lens was bought a loan system would be the way to do it. And yeah istockphoto has been going well, but the MT-24 set me back a bit - probably another month and a bit before I can get that lens :-) You haven't been going to bad yourself too - any new equipment? ;)--Fir0002 01:10, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
  • I'm flying home to Melbourne for Christmas and stopping in Hong Kong for 4 days. Will be looking keenly at the local camera shops there as I've already spotted quite a few bargains (even cheaper than the US). If you're interested, have a look here - theres 6.8HKD to the AUD at the moment. I'm thinking of trading up from my 17-40mm f/4L to a 16-35mm f/2.8L (I'm not 100% sure why, as I tend to do multi-segment panoramas rather than single ultra wide angle shots...), getting a 24mm f/2.8, a macro flash (probably the ring flash but may get the twin speedlite that you got!) and I was considering getting a new gitzo carbon-fibre travel tripod that folds back over the head (GT1540T) because my current gitzo tripod is a bit bulky. I think I've been talked out of it though, as some people have said it isn't strong enough to handle a 5D and 70-200mm f/2.8L without vibration/leg flex being a pain. Its rated to 4.5kg and my camera/lens combo should only be about 2kg at most though.. I'll have a look at it and probably make an impulsive decision at the time. ;-) Besides, I'm not sure if I can justify two $500 carbon fibre tripods anyway, and I wouldn't want to get rid of my old one I don't think. I also bought a Markins Q3 recently which is an amazing ballhead. I don't know how much photography you do with a tripod but it is a huge improvement over my old one. Anyway, anything you want me to bring back to Oz with me for you? ;-) Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 20:49, 23 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Well since you ask.... :-) Nah thanks for the offer but I couldn't really ask you to do that for me. Where do you get stuff from the US? Coz I get my stuff from BH photovideo and they're cheaper than that HK link you sent - check out [1] vs [2]. Yeah I've heard that the 16-35 is a beauty, but as you say not really you're way of doing a wide angle :) But given you're thinking of getting it, why the 24mm? Yeah the MT-24 is really good - a huge step up from my work around 580EX! I don't really do large amounts of panos so haven't really looked at ball heads or whatever, but it looks pretty useful bit of kit. Likewise the tripod looks pretty nice - I've only got a $150 slik (it's heavy but sturdy and I can usually get a sibling to act the sherpa :) Hope you have a nice flight - when is it because I'm planning on spending a week in Melbourne myself from the 2nd of Dec, might see you at the botanic gardens or something :) --Fir0002 11:16, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Yeah, you're right, in that case it is slightly cheaper in the US. But the thing is, I don't get my stuff from the US. I live in London, and in the UK, we have to pay shipping plus 17.5% VAT plus import duty of 5% or so (I think) plus £10 for DHL to get it out of customs. It ends up not being very cheap at all. And neither is buying locally. So the chance to buy it from a store in HK is something I'd jump at. Anyway, for some things it is significantly cheaper in HK. Eg this for the equivalent of USD$458 vs this at USD$559 plus shipping. Depends on the product. Anyway, I've heard of international buyers having a lot of problems with ordering from BH and Adorama as they're fussy about overseas credit cards. A couple of years ago, I was traveling in the US and tried to arrange to buy a 20" monitor from Dell. Each time I placed the order, they cancelled it without any notification AFTER they had charged the card. It turned out that they were suspicious about a non-US credit card being used to pay for it. When I finally managed to get through to someone who could actually explain that, I found that even when they agreed not to cancel it, the refund on my card would take up to a week, and my credit card didn't have enough credit remaining to place a second order. Very frustrating. Anyway, I digress. I won't be in Melb until the 15th of December, so I'll miss you by a week. Not sure if summer is the right time of year for the Botanic gardens though. Probably more spring or autumn. Will be interested to see what you come up with anyway. Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 12:33, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Also, ballheads are not really for panos (in fact you need a panoramic head to stick on top of the tripod head to get proper panoramas with no parallax error), they just make using a tripod that much easier because they lock and unlock with just a twist of a dial and give you complete freedom of movement. I suppose it depends how much you use a tripod as for whether its worth getting one though. They're not essential in that they won't let you take photos you couldn't take otherwise, they just make life easier. Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 12:42, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Fellows, is this the right place for a discussion about equipment - or is it the FPC talk page? ;-) I get a note on my watchlist everytime someone makes even one keystroke here, but this is getting to be a little too much... --Janke | Talk 12:44, 24 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Yeah, why don't you guys copy that chatter to your talk pages? As for the original proposal: Yikes! If this ever happened I wouldn't donate another dime to Wikimedia, ad I'd probably stop my contributions as well. Sorry, but singling out single contributors for monetary compensation seems just wrong. It is making my stomach hurt how some people seem to be in it for the money. Please keep in mind that there is a number of contributors who has spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars on equipment, who spent considerable time creating photos or illustrations for Wikipedia for free. And I mean the free as in GPL-free or GFDL-free or whatever. People who upload fullsize versions without keeping a money-making version for themselves. Now it is your choice if you don't want share all of your hard work, it is ok to use WM as a promotional vehicle as long as it also helps the encyclopedia, but please at least don't start begging the foundation for money. :-( --Dschwen 15:47, 26 November 2007 (UTC)
I don't know. I spend a lot of money doing research for free, but I'd jump at the chance to have a grant to offset the cost of travelling to other libraries, photocopying and so on. Vanished user talk 16:42, 26 November 2007 (UTC)
Mind you, I'd jump even quicker at an offer of help to scan and so on. Getting things uploaded, stitched, etc, is the major bottleneck I face. Vanished user talk 16:44, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

Well well well, how interesting...

Wikipedia:The Core Contest - what a coincidence! --Fir0002 01:09, 27 November 2007 (UTC)

Sigh. Coincidence? Whatever. Check the talk page! Then there also is Wikipedia:Bounty_board which actually is a neat idea (mony amounts are reasonable, some offer donations to Wikimedia, and it's not donation money that's used). In any case you are missing the point. --Dschwen 02:54, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
I actually meant literally "what a coincidence this would appear on my watchlist" rather than a sarcastic "what a coincidence" as in someone has based that contest off my idea. And I don't want to get into a confrontational argument with you here Dschwen, but this really is what my idea is - using the WMF donations to create quality articles/contributions for the project --Fir0002 03:17, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
I knew it was sarcastic, thats exactly why it annoyed me ;-). Anyways it seems we just disagree. Fine. WMF apparently has enough problems to get enough donations to ensure basic operations. That, and the fairness argument is what makes me feel very uneasy about the proposal. Now if anybody want's to pay bounties for certain tasks from their own pocket (just like Phil Greenspun did on commons for Illustrations by the way) I'm not going to stop them. But still, anytime money comes into play you'll get problems with greed, envy etc. and that's when the fun is going away. --Dschwen 18:19, 27 November 2007 (UTC)


Okay, what do we want to do about the other ones? Vanished user talk 11:43, 24 November 2007 (UTC)

Macro Sharpness vs DOF test

I guess this is a bit of a response to recent criticism on my choice of aperture in shooting macro. I did the following test last night to demonstrate the limitation of diffraction in macro photos. The test subject was a Spotted Flower Chafer, chosen due to the fine detail in it's hair and body as well as being relatively "deep" - thus providing a good test for sharpness and DOF respectively. The test was taken with a 20D on a tripod using a remote release (TC-80N), the beetle was still alive (as variations in leg position show) but turned on his back to limit movement. Each frame was shot at 1/320s ISO 400, exposure was adjusted for using a MT-24EX flash ring. Apart from increasing exposure on each frame by +0.67 in raw conversion and removing dust spots, no editing (including noise reduction/sharpening) was done. Take a look at the series and judge for yourselves:

As you can see even downsized to 1600px, the lack of detail and sharpness in the frame at f/22 is poor. At 100% it's appalling. --Fir0002 00:18, 27 November 2007 (UTC)

Surprising, I apparently have underestimated the impact of the bigger pixels of the 5D. --Dschwen 03:00, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
So you reckon that at f/22 on a 5D the quality is much better? I'd be interested to see some crops if possible --Fir0002 03:22, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
The quality deterioration is more then I would have expected. I guess with macro lack of sharpness is pretty obvious. Correct me if I'm wrong, but bigger pixels wouldn't theoretically help with diffraction other then to effectively downsample?? I guess you just need to build a high-quality, low-noise, high-dynamic range sensor that has a 5x crop factor... that way, you could use a 20mm lens and get much better DOF :-( Truly a paradox. -Fcb981(talk:contribs) 03:40, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
That's not true; with a smaller sensor, you encounter diffraction problems at larger apertures, in the end canceling out any added effect you may have had with better DOF per f-number. A larger sensor is always better theoretically, though for macro, often impractical. thegreen J Are you green? 02:29, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, though I'd expect quality improvement due to the 5D's superior resolving power, I don't think it would overcome the fundamental problem of diffraction. And yes I don't think many people realize just how severe it is - but it just bears out what you can read from the MTF charts on photozone. --Fir0002 03:59, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
Sure, the bigger pixels make the diffraction less apparent. The resolving power of the 5D is actually smaller than Fir's camera. Of course the price is less magnification with the macro lens. --Dschwen 23:50, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
Hmmm... are you sure the focus has not at all shifted in the last photo? I was curious and repeated your test, and while the f/22 shot looks bad, it's not nearly as bad as these. thegreen J Are you green? 04:35, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
I've uploaded my (downsized) f/22 here. I have near identical shots at: f/2.5, f/4, f/5.6, f/8, f/11, f/16, f/22, and f/32 if anyone is curious. I adjusted exposure by shutter speed, release through 3 second timer with mirror locked-up, manual focus. thegreen J Are you green? 04:48, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
I was using manual focus so focus shift was not an issue. With all due respect you've chosen a poor test subject - you need something which is actually macro (ie smaller than 3cm in size) with fine detail. --Fir0002 05:53, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
This is at full (1:2) macro, and the thread is the fine detail. Sharpness loss is very apparent in 100% crops; the threads have fine texture on them that is lost in this. thegreen J Are you green? 12:47, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
Oh ok it's only a 1:2 - to be really apparent I think you'd need to be using a 1:1 lens like my Sigma --Fir0002 21:29, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
But what does magnification play in this? It would alter DOF, but AFAIK the sharpness should be unaffected by magnification. Oh, and here is the f/5.6 image. Compare - there's no significant differance in sharpness at this resolution. At 100% the difference is much more obvious, though not as bad as your samples. thegreen J Are you green? 01:21, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
Well because in the macro world, the fine detail of the thread of the mat is very visible as your frame is virtually filled with it. And as you saw this detail was lost at f22 - so if you shot that mat with a 1:1 macro you'd see all that fine detail loss translating to a close up picture with similar quality loss to the ones I posted. --Fir0002 01:44, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
What!? You're not making sense to me. As you focus closer, the resolution will remain the same! The closer I focus the more detail I will get for unit area of subject, though the lpmm resolution that is on the sensor will remain the same (if this is what you're trying to say doesn't exist). Oh, BTW, this is not a mat, but an ordinary piece of cloth, about 4 or 5 cm in length. thegreen J Are you green? 02:22, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
Sorry if I wasn't clear. I'll try again. What I mean is that with a 1:1 lens you're photographing things which are very small. Typically this means insects. And typically these insects will have fine hairs and texture to them. These fine hairs and texture is what you lose due to diffraction in terms of sharpness. Because your cloth is fairly large, the fine detail is not very evident regardless of the aperture because it's not magnified enough. And so when those fine details are lost at f/22 they are not missed as much as when photographing an insect. To use a simple example consider the compound eye of an insect. It's essential to have sufficient fine detail in those eyes to make them look like they're in focus - other wise they just look like glossy orbs. At f22 you wont get these details and they eye appears smudged and out of focus. --Fir0002 04:28, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
So you're saying that sharpness is more important up close because a macro picture is more textured than a non-macro? I can't say that I agree. When compound eyes are unsharp, they may look like glossy orbs, but if a portrait is unsharp, hair looks like a plastic cap. It just depends on how resolved the details of the picture need to be. If you'll take another look at the downsampled f/22 shot, you'll see that it's getting more detail than your f/22 shot, but that is not because your picture needs more detail resolved to look sharp. If anything, the fine threads in a 1:2 macro need more resolution than in a 1:1 macro because the threads themselves are comparatively projected smaller relative to the sensor and are of lower contrast in relation to each other, so if they cannot be resolved, they turn into a pile of mush. That said, I am straying from the original point-why is your f/22 shot less sharp than mine? thegreen J Are you green? 04:51, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
Just before we go any further, I had another quick look at your images, and am a bit confused. In the 100% crop: Image:F56 and f22 compared.jpg, you say that the f/22 shot is on the left and the f/5.6 is on the right - implying that f/22 is sharper and more detailed than f/5.6? Or is that just a simple mistake? And can I just confirm with you that your shots are straight out of the camera without any editing? --Fir0002 06:09, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
It was late, and I was tired. Fixed. And these are straight raw conversions with DPP, all settings at zero, 104%/.4 pixel USM (very little) in order to make details easier to see on comparison crops, but no sharpening or other editing on the downsized f/22 shot. thegreen J Are you green? 21:12, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
Well perhaps you could explain this: Image:F22 anim02.gif. I took the 100% crop you provided (which had been sharpened) downsized it to 46.2% (3456px to 1600px downsize) and placed it onto the unsharpened f/22 downsample. I then blew it up to 400% to make the comparison more obvious. What I'm getting is that the unsharpened downsample is significantly sharper than the sharpened 100% crop. What is going on here? --Fir0002 22:38, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
Hmmm... that's interesting. The downsample was at a higher jpeg compression, but I don't think that's the problem. Going back to the straight-from-RAW files and comparing them, I suppose I must have sharpened it... This is the most probable case. The difference is in contrast, ie USM, and downsampling that much would negate any effect that my small-radius sharpening would have had on the crops. So, probably it's carelessness on my part. Later, (this computer is too slow for uploads) I'll start over at raw and re-upload. thegreen J Are you green? 23:04, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
(indent reset) Yeah that would be good because bear in mind the shots I posted didn't have any sharpening done to them (beyond in camera sharpening which is constant for all frames). So to have a fair comparison we'd really need them to have identical processing. --Fir0002 23:31, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
OK, started over from RAW, all default settings, bicubic downsampling in Photoshop, saved as 10 quality jpeg, and re-uploaded. thegreen J Are you green? 01:35, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
Well that's made a significant difference, all the fine detail has gone (just like with my lens). The only reason it doesn't appear even worse is that the nature of the unchanging pattern of the thick threads and high contrast shadows between knitting form an image where the fine detail isn't really missed (as much as with my macro shot). That said, I checked out the review on your lens on photozone and it is meant to be slightly sharper at f/22 than mine. The best test, which I guess we should do, is to print out a standard MTF chart like this and shoot a test with that. --Fir0002 02:31, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
I still think I'm getting more resolution than you are (look at the stray threads vs. the clumps of hair), but maybe you're right. Anyways... How big is this supposed to be? A4? Before I use up a bunch of ink, I'd like to know that I'm printing the right size so that we don't end up looking at the resolution limit of my printer rather than my lens! thegreen J Are you green? 02:43, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
Well I just did my test at A4 size printed from a (cheap) B/W laser printer the Samsung ML2010 - I don't think it'll matter too much as long as it's consistent it'll still show the quality loss between f/11 and f/22 (the apertures I used). I'm just going to lunch now - I'll put up what I got in 20 mins or so --Fir0002 03:04, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
OK. I just printed, cropping the horizontal resolution part and printed it ~25cm long, then ran into an edit conflict with you. So, not really consistant, but I'll wait for your shots and frame accordingly. If this doesn't work for you, I'll print out a copy at school tomorrow with a similar laser printer to what you used, cheap, and I don't have to worry about draining our ink. thegreen J Are you green? 03:12, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
Yeah either would be fine (why aren't you at school today!? :P )- I don't think this test will necessarily show a good comparison between our lenses (you'd need the same conditions and bodies etc) but it will show the degrading quality. So it's not crucial for your print out to be the same as mine. --Fir0002 03:59, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
Sure. I'm not at school 'cuz I'm about a third of the way across the world and about to go to bed! I'll post my results tomorrow. thegreen J Are you green? 04:12, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
  • Interesting results, it's a nice lens, that Sigma. The f22 shot is by far the best photograph, unless you happen to be shooting for nothing but visible detail at screen resolution. By the time you're through with lens correction and USM you'd need a 40x30 print to spot the difference in detail, and I'd take the f22 version over the others any day. --mikaultalk 15:20, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
    • Are you for real?! The f22 shot? You could spot the difference in a 5x7, let alone an A4 or as you suggested a 40x30. The detail is simply not there - USM won't magically bring that out of nothing. It's lost - same as a blown highlight. And to be honest I don't think you gain anything at all in terms of focus. I mean you think you get a little more of the beetle "in focus" (and as you can see it's not that much more), but ironically you end up loosing the area that's in focus at f/11 because suddenly no part of the beetle is in focus - its all blurry! I guess you're entitled to your opinion here but there is no way I'd be happy with the quality of f22! --Fir0002 21:29, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
      • hahaha you really are the sharpness freak, aren't you? I realise this is a big deal with macro work and I apologise of the wind-up: of course you have more sharpness at f11, you knew that before you started, and the difference in sharpness where it's in focus probably would be visible at 5x7, but I'd dispute the significance of that. The difference between my perception and yours (if you like) is in the value of that sharpness in that area. If this were a chance shot and I had only one shot at it, I'd go for f22 every time, because I'd end up with a much more evenly focussed shot of a beetle. The only detail that's gone for ever is in the completely OOF areas of your f11 shot (no USM will ever bring that back!) – basically I get more info about the bug with max DOF than I do with selective sharpness. This is because I guess I'm more into pictures of things than details of pictures of things, for want of a better way of putting it. Translate this into a more pictorial field, like landscapes or portraiture, and you'll maybe see the F22 bug through my eyes. --mikaultalk 22:31, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
        • I think Fir0002 often does focus stacking (combining images taken at different focus points). If done properly, this can give the best of both worlds. -- Coneslayer (talk) 22:34, 27 November 2007 (UTC)
          • Well perhaps I might be too much of a perfectionist in that regard, but I think few people on FPC would forgive such poor sharpness in an image if it went up. I see what you're saying about the OOF area at f/11, but that doesn't negate the fact that you no longer get any fine detail an image at f/22 as you'd take it - you've basically captured only it's shape, losing a lot of valuable information on the insect in fine detail. Which is why I'd use f/11 or f/13 every time. The loss of detail at f/22 is just as unrecoverable as the OOF area at f/11. Landscape and portraiture are very different fields to macro and certainly have different rules - for example a large aperture is a good thing in a portrait to blur out the background. A landscape generally has equal DOF at f/5.6 than f/22 except for low down wide angles. But I guess we'll just have agree to disagree :) --Fir0002 01:44, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
            • I'm the same, in that I will tend to take a multi-segment mosaic image of something and correct it for perspective distortion and then downsize it a bit for extra sharpness, whereas others may just take a single snapshot with a point and shoot and be done with it. This technique is far more fiddly and prone to errors, but if you really nail it, the effort is worth it, so I can sympathise with the effort that goes into taking a photo that stands out from the crowd. I'm not saying that this method is all you need to create awe-inspiring images - far from it. Composition and subject matter are obviously just as important. I still disagree with Mick though. FPC images should be sharp. USM does not create sharpness that didn't already exist. It just accentuates existing sharpness by creating contrast around edges. This is all well and good for our perception of sharpness but it doesn't create detail. I also think he may be taking his personal preferences for photography in general to FPC where the purpose of the photography may be slightly different to his own. Here, FPC is equally about detail as it is about the picture of the 'thing' and it would be a mistake to concentrate on one at the expense of the other. Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 11:38, 28 November 2007 (UTC)
              • Well, exactly my point. FPC is not about one particlular thing, but then this thread isn't about FPC, it's about an issue which is largely incidental to it. Look, my background is in studio photography and I'm quite accustomed to spending several days on a single image. I really do understand the desire for ultimate quality. Don't misinterpret my comments as those of one who doesn't care about sharpness or detail – far from it, it's quite obviously a factor in overall image quality. I have to say though that, when it comes to FPCs, a clear, illustrative "picture of the thing" is more important that than super-finely resolved detail at 100% screen resolution. I take issue with your implication that ultra-fine detail is of the same importance in selecting FPs as a clear, overall depiction. C'mon, lets get some kind of perspective here.. this is one of the few areas where we can be reasonably objective about photography: application. Yes, in a macro shot fine detail counts for an awful lot, although I will re-state my contention that, for FPC, a semblance of fine detail (less ultra-fine, more DOF) is preferable to no detail at all (completely OOF areas adjacent to ultra-fine detail) in the main subject. In landscape and architectural fields it's a little less crucial, in portraiture less so again (but nice), and so on all the way down to photojournalism where fine detail can verge on the irrelevant. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm fairly sure these aren't my "personal preferences", they're fairly universal practical and aesthetic considerations. It was someone else's personal quest which brought me here, one I'm sure will be of benefit to the foundadtion, but don't try to twist it into some kind of FPC holy grail, because it just ain't. --mikaultalk 15:08, 28 November 2007 (UTC)

New Series with ISO 12233 chart

ISO 12233 Test Chart, downloaded from here printed on a Samsung ML2010 B/W laser printer at 1200dpi. Photographed using a 40D (yes that's right a 40D - I used my Dad's so that I wouldn't have to worry about the dust spots on the 20D) on a tripod with a TC-80N remote release and a Sigma 150mm f/2.8 macro lens. The shots were taken at 1/80s, ISO 200, manual exposure, manual focus. Lit by natural light and a Canon 580EX. No post processing.

So yeah, again f/11 trumps f/22 hands down IMO. The above test also bears out what I was saying above about macro and fine detail - you don't notice the loss so much in the full chart shots compared to the 1:1 macro shots. --Fir0002 03:50, 29 November 2007 (UTC)

IMO, the bug above was more telling. Here, f/22 doesn't look as bad. Although its hard to tell with the texture of the paper and the dull light. I'd suggest gutting it printed light-jet or at least on photo paper with your inkjet. From these its hard to tell much difference. From the bug it was more obvious. Not to mention that it looks like your lens easily out-resolves the printer. -Fcb981(talk:contribs) 12:30, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
Oh I fully agree, the bug is a much better subject because it's not just theoretical it's a real life application. This test is so that the green j could have an equal subject to see how his and my lens compare. --Fir0002 22:05, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
OK... here are my results. Do you think you could do something similar so that we could see the resolution limits? The bars at 100% crop are large enough to be resolved in your test, so they can't really be used as a reference point here. I must say, the f/22 still looks significantly better (as Fcb981 said) than what I'd expect from the bug-the 1600px full charts at f/11 and f/22 show no really noticable difference, both seeing their limits around the 8 horizontal mark. This is definitely interesting. When mine are downsampled to the equivalent of 1600px, I'm seeing the limit at my 10 (not comparable to your chart) for f/5.6 and f/11 and my 8 for my f/22, much smaller than what your bug pictures would suggest... Oh... some minor editing to get rid of lighting inconsistancies (I was using 2 angled desk lamps to keep from blocking the cameras view, but one significantly brighter than the other), but no sharpening or anything like that. thegreen J Are you green? 23:48, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
Aagh! I just noticed that I must have made a clipboard mistake, so that the top two are both from the f/11 shot... I'm really busy now, but maybe tomorrow I can upload a version with the f/5.6 shot in place. It looks almost identical to the f/11 shot with slightly differnt moiré. thegreen J Are you green? 23:57, 29 November 2007 (UTC)
I've posted similar crops to yours, but seems like you've got a higher quality print and you've used slightly tighter framing (you've got higher mag) so as I originally said it would be too hard to get a direct comparison between my lens and yours. However I think the test does show that your lens isn't significantly different from mine in terms of quality difference between f/11 and f/22. So I guess the probably concludes things unless you're not convinced that the quality loss is very noticeable in "real life" macro applications? In which case maybe you could shoot a beetle or something similar? Anyway I think this has been a profitable discussion in raising awareness of small aperture limitations. --Fir0002 00:46, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
It's not higher quality; it's just that I cropped that part and blew it up to full sheet size, so you're looking at a length of about 20cm in my picture, covering up the poor quality close up. What I was saying, though... All this is concerned about is the downsized 1600px versions. You're not going to upload anything larger, 1600px is all that matters to us. Looking at the 1600 pixel, full chart pictures, f/22 and f/11 are showing their limits in resolving fine lines at extremely close numbers, whereas the beetle pictures show drastic difference, even at 1600×1067. However, I'm questioning my own observation after seeing your new 100% crops. The blocky patterns at fine detail that I had interpreted to be showing the limits of resolution in the picture now seem to be the limits of the printer's resolution... Anyhow, I think frosts have killed off most of the bugs around here, but if I see a big one, I'll give it a try! Basically, though, what I'm saying is that your bug macro is showing much more pronounced degradation than your ISO charts. But yes, I agree, diffraction definitely has very visible limitations. thegreen J Are you green? 03:43, 30 November 2007 (UTC)
It's likely a property of that lens/body combo. I have an old 85mm f2 Nikkor which is outstanding at wide apertures and totally pants stopped down, but the issue isn't sharpness as contrast, and it's much worse on a D80 (DSLR) than an F5 (film). Looking at those chart results, there is some sharpness loss, but there's a similar degradation in contrast which exacerbates that softness. This is precisely what USM is for, to manipulate local contrast, not recover lost sharpness.
The other thing is reproduction size, as you mentioned, which I think is way more important than bench testing, for practical purposes. Basically, things look very different as a print compared to an on-screen image, and while the exercise here is essential to understand the guts of the issue, its bearing on real-world viewing is directly related to repro size/viewing distance considerations, which (more scientifically) equate to circle of confusion calculations.
In general, at half-page (magazine) repro, f22 is a usable aperture with negligible practical loss of definition. For DSLRs, f16 is a widely-accepted, general rule-of-thumb upper value for an acceptably sharp print at 10x8 inches. Only with bigger repro (or on-screen evaluation) will a wider aperture give noticeably better definition. If you translate your 100% crops from your 10MP DSLR into real-world repro, it's akin to viewing a 30x40 inch print from six inches away, in which case your maximum value aperture for acceptable sharpness comes down, as you've amply demonstrated, to around f11.
Caveat: you might never need to get so close to a print, but you may very well want to crop heavily or print bigger. In which case the rule to shoot by is to always use the widest possible aperture for a desired DoF. --mikaultalk 12:09, 30 November 2007 (UTC)

What was that?

Was it just me, or were there something like 4 or 5 sockpuppets in that strange FPC nom earlier today? I looked, and all of the first-time voters were new and created around the same time, with no mainspace edits, and contributions to the same two or three user/talk pages.

I'm sure this probably isn't the best place to raise this issue, and it'll probably all come to nothing, but sockpuppets are a pretty serious issue anywhere in the encyclopedia.

Of course, this isn't meant to be anything personal (if anything, Fir0002 is probably one of two people to deserve his own hypothetical and imaginary FP); I was just curious to what other people thought. --Malachirality (talk) 01:21, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

They would be a social networking group, not sockpuppets. MER-C 09:12, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

Head and shoulders portraits of animals - a special category that should be given more weight?

In response to a rationale that I presented for how I vote on pictures of animals, User:Coneslayer suggested that "head shots" (my coinage) should be given more weight. Do people feel that these kinds of head-and-shoulders portraits are a special category that is a valid alternative to a whole body shot, or preferable to it? Which taxonomic groups should this apply to, and why? (I can think of a reason why birds might be an exception.) Should we set out specific criteria as a supplement to WP:WIAFA for what pictures need to be included in an article? (E.g. flight silhouette1, size comparison, distribution map mandatory?) It would be especially good to get a few more views from biologists and birders, rather than photographers (whose views, I'm sorry to say, may be biased).

1Maybe not for really tiny birds.

Samsara (talk  contribs) 14:32, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

To expand on what I said about possible repercussions for the FAC process:

I suggested that it might be made mandatory for FAs to contain illustrations representing:

  1. a distribution map
  2. size comparison vs. human (or human legs, feet, hand, as applicable to the size of the animal) for animals above a certain size (10cm?)
  3. flight silhouette for birds above a certain size
  4. the head in profile (birds, others?) or head-on (bats, others?)

We could think about similar criteria for plants (distribution, seed morphology, flower morphology, leaf morphology, Gestalt).

Samsara (talk  contribs) 15:04, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

I can see the value of head shots for some, Avocet for instance, to accentuate distinctive head features, but a head-shot of a peacock or a quetzal would miss the bird's most notable feature. And, does there have to a consistent style for all birds? Totnesmartin (talk) 14:48, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
I think this should be decided on a case-by-case basis (though if there were some kind of taxonomic consideration, it would probably only apply to Craniata...). In some instances, head shots are all you really need (I've done a series of portrait drawings of oviraptorids, which all look pretty much the same from the neck down but have distinctive crests). My reasoning here is that the overview page for the whole family could show a full view of the animal, and individual (cranial, in this case) variations could be highlighted in species articles. This setup obviously wouldn't apply to millipedes or peacocks, obviously, which is why having a generalized policy on this might be a bad idea. Dinoguy2 (talk) 15:05, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
There seem to be two separate threads involved here. I agree, in the first instance, that most species should have a full-body photo (where available) high up in their article. These would, in my opinion, be more important than a "head shot". However, I see no reason why something that isn't a full-body shot couldn't become a featured photo. I think there are instances where including a "head shot" in a species article would be good; however, I don't think that's the case for every species, and I would be against making it a requirement for an FA article. I'm also not sure a requirement for a "flight silhouette" is a reasonable one. What would the "certain size" be? Would this only be for soaring birds, e.g. those most likely to be seen in flight? Would they have to be photos? I guess I'll need a little more information before agreeing or disagreeing... MeegsC | Talk 15:24, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

I think much of this is a non-starter. At least at GA, you can't insist on a photo, although it's obviously desirable, and for many species photographs of any sort are difficult to come by. When I wrote Aerodramus (GA) there were no photos at all of any of the small swifts in the genus - even the Indian photographers haven't managed a shot of these aerial species. For many small birds, there is no way you are likely to get a head shot (unless you mean cropping images, which seems pointless). What's the particular virtue of showing only part of the animal anyway?
Comparing most birds to humans seems inappropriate (birds, on the whole, aren't the same shape as a foot) and anthropocentric. Why not compare to familiar species like House Sparrow or Feral Pigeon? Similarly mammals could be compared to mouse/cat/dog/human as appropriate.
This suggestion seems geared to photographs of big captive or tame animals in zoos. If there was any restriction, I think it should be that only photographs of wild animals and birds should be permitted, other than for domesticated species. Jimfbleak (talk) 15:29, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
Agree with distribution map definitely. I can think of enough cases where a size comparison would add little (and hence clutter a page which has taxoboxes etc.) to be reluctant to include it as a deal-breaker. Think not only small birds but also dog, horse, cat and many other familiar animals, also various plants are too variable to make it meaningful, let alone mushrooms. Common use of flight silhouettes in bird books tend to be restricted to raptors and seabirds...cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 15:30, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
I would like to think of this as a discussion, rather than a case of agreeing or disagreeing with the original proposal. The discussion could, of course, lead to some consensus on a new guideline or some such. When I say "illustration", I do mean it broadly, so it could be a photograph, but wouldn't have to be. Clearly, distribution maps, for instance, are typically schematic.
Examples of scale charts can be found at User:Dinoguy2#Scale_Charts. And mushroom are fungi, but algae (which are cnsidered plants depending on definition) are another exception, although some algae have morphology that can be used to identify species and can be seen under a standard microscope (somewhere upwards from 40x magnification probably). I don't know if WikiProjects would have the zeal to lay down definitions like these for their articles. It might be an idea to create an accolade that would allow each WikiProject to define its own criteria for excellence, something that goes beyond "A class, FA class", and would showcase the content created in a central place, i.e. syndicate the content from all WikiProjects. Samsara (talk  contribs) 15:34, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

From User talk:MeegsC:

(butting in) Thing is Samsara I've only seen silhouettes widely used in a minority of bird groups (i.e. raptors and seabirds only). Good idea. I am worried about clutter on some bio pages though. mycomorphboxes have been fun (not) to work with on fungi pages but are very useful. cheers, Casliber (talk · contribs) 15:50, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
I'm not sure that everything has to go in the *box. It's a possibility, but not a necessity. Take a look at how it was done in tuatara, which has a fair number of maps and illustrations. If standardisation makes things easier, I'm for it. Samsara (talk  contribs) 16:42, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

(ec):::Thanks for inviting WikiProject Dinosaurs members here, Samsara. I guess I'm kind of confused. Is this a proposal for Featured Picture candidates, or Featured Article candidates? If it's the later, this may be the wrong venue, and we may want to move this discussion to WT:FAC. I am in favor of having good, approved images for FA candidates. The project I work on has an image review process that helps keep things like this out of articles.

If we're talking about a proposal for FACs of organisms to have a certain bare number of images, I think it would be a good idea. A distribution map would be a good start. However, WP:DINO has to do many of its illustrations in-house, as there appear to be very few illustrations which:
  • Are anatomically accurate with regard to what is currently known about dinosaurs
  • Have a license compatible with Wikipedia usage
  • Show the animal in a non-anachronistic way (no grass, not shown preying on animals from a different era)
  • Aren't blurry or otherwise undesirable
  • Have file names which aren't blatantly racist (a criterion which may have to be added after a recent incident).
What ends up happening is we do most of the illustrations ourselves. My concern is that if this becomes mandatory for FAs, that a user in good faith will come along and object to a FAC which has a decent number of illustrations, but no head shot for an animal whose head is not known, or object because there is no scale diagram for an animal known from only fragmentary material. So far, we've worked with fairly well-known genera on FAC, but at some point, we may want to try to work on articles like Trachodon or Ponerosteus, and we definitely could not do many illustrations of any kind for these animals, meaning these articles could never become FAs under a mandatory range map/head shot/scale diagram rule. Firsfron of Ronchester 17:12, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
Regarding 'head shots' for fossil animals: What about illustrations of skulls and other bones? A skull illustration may be much more useful than a profile or lateral view of the living animal. If any of Samsara's criteria are adopted for FAC, there should be a proviso concerning skulls. Firsfron of Ronchester 18:46, 7 December 2007 (UTC)
I can do an illustration of Ponerosteus... [3] Sheep81 (talk) 06:53, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I'd oppose making any of these criteria mandatory for FA. Flight silhouettes, as mentioned, are only used for some species, distribution maps are fine and dandy if you can get someone to make them I guess, size comparison doesn't do a great deal (have you seen the HBW size comparisons?) and a head shot, while nice, isn't always avaliable. There are, I have to point out, whole families where we don't have a single illustration let alone photos, and these are lesser known families which I don't feel we'd benefit from discoraging people from working on them. Sabine's Sunbird talk 00:13, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
    • The truth is that we do have illustrators, some of whom are very willing to produce a drawing once in a while, so I don't feel that's a particularly valid point. There are also famous birding volumes with good illustrations that are now PD. On the subject of distribution maps, I've made several (versions of the same map as more info became available), and it's not that hard. GIMP is a free, cross-platform program, so there's really no excuse. It's essentially the same argument as for using copyrighted images because "I can't draw". In fact, there's probably room for a brief guideline on distribution maps per se (colours, labels, whether to include a distinction between historic and current range, etc.) I'm not sure what "HBW size comparisons" refers to. Samsara (talk  contribs) 04:36, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

Let's avoid making solid rules about issues like these and decide it on a per picture basis. Calibas (talk) 03:11, 8 December 2007 (UTC)

That's a fine idea in principle, Calibas, except that I find that every time I state that a picture of the whole organism would be preferable, the discussion starts all over again, and I'm labelled as some sort of heretic. It's usually a photographers vs. editors battle, where the photographers want the beautiful picture to win for its aesthetic appeal, but the editors question its encyclopaedic value and (particularly) comprehensiveness. And a computer programming rule says that when you find yourself repeating the same task, you should automate it in some way. So that's what I've done in setting out my opinions in the piece linked at thread's beginning. One of the questions raised was whether I was taking an unreasonable stance in excluding pictures that show only the head of an animal, particularly a bird (my opinion piece goes into more detail on exceptions to the rule). Samsara (talk  contribs) 04:36, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
  • Comment Why on earth are Featured Picture Candidates being discussed in terms of Featured Articles or even GA??!!! A photo can be featured even if it is only present in a stub as long it is of high quality, enc, etc etc - in fact in some ways it's even more desirable in such a context as it makes up for the limited encyclopaedic value of the article. Please do not mix FPC with FAC --Fir0002 10:13, 8 December 2007 (UTC)
    • Perhaps you'd like to read the start of the thread again to ensure you understand what's being discussed. Thanks, Samsara (talk  contribs) 16:01, 9 December 2007 (UTC)
      • Well perhaps you should:

To expand on what I said about possible repercussions for the FAC process:

I suggested that it might be made mandatory for FAs to contain illustrations representing: #a distribution map #size comparison vs. human (or human legs, feet, hand, as applicable to the size of the animal) for animals above a certain size (10cm?) #flight silhouette for birds above a certain size #the head in profile (birds, others?) or head-on (bats, others?)

We could think about similar criteria for plants (distribution, seed morphology, flower morphology, leaf morphology, Gestalt).

Samsara (talk  contribs) 15:04, 7 December 2007 (UTC)

      • Key phrase: "To expand on what I said about possible repercussions for the FAC process:". Please state what you are actually trying to say in context of FPC not FAC --Fir0002 22:18, 9 December 2007 (UTC)

Page stats

Screenshot of output

I just discovered this handy tool. The winner is... Janke! (above unsigned comment 2007-12-10T00:21:27 by User:Fir0002)

And you're second - so what? Big deal... ;-)
PS: Between us, you win hands down on Wikipedia:List_of_Wikipedians_by_number_of_edits
Also see WP:Editcountitis --Janke | Talk 08:01, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
I hope you're not taking it wrong - I put it up merely as a point of a interest. I'm not trying to say anything by it... :) --Fir0002 10:35, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
Hear that hissing Fir? I'm breathing down your neck! Mwahaha! --Dschwen 15:11, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
 :) But you'll need to catch up - I've done three contribs to this discussion to your one! :P --Fir0002 21:53, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
Shame we can't do a meaningful count for the FPC page itself (due to the subpages). No surprise that Fir0002 comes up high on that list too for the main part of the page itself, but what's happened to Bevo, who's got nearly twice as many edits as Fir? (And this edit now moves me one clear of Brian for this page). ;-) --jjron (talk) 06:59, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

Just making sure you don't get too close to my bumper.. --mikaultalk 18:03, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
My god, I'v got alot of catching up to do. -Fcb981(talk:contribs) 23:01, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

Applying own criteria

I just noticed User:Aitias/fpc, which might explain some unusual votes. I wasn't really sure what to do - I left a note on Aitias's talk page reminding that we have our own criteria (and that a few of Aitias's terms seem confused), though I suppose you could argue that Aitias's criteria fall under our criteria #1... thegreen J Are you green? 01:50, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

reply. Regards, —αἰτίας discussion 20:36, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

I also find the criteria and the way he applies them bewildering. As someone else pointed out, neither of the images under "blurred" on User:Aitias/fpc are, in fact, out of focus. I'm sorry to have to speak on this as someone who nominated (although not self-nom) one of the pictures this editor opposed, but I, too, am wondering whether his votes should be disregarded. He hasn't been able to substantiate his original claims; his reply to thegreenj equates to a simple "you're wrong and I'm right" without explanation. It is not even clear whether this editor knows how to view images at full size (since he didn't respond to my comment on this subject). Samsara (talk  contribs) 18:13, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

I won't use them anymore. Okay? —αἰτίας discussion 17:31, 18 December 2007 (UTC)

Captions (again)

I don't want to go beating a dead horse but I think this needs revisiting.

I've created a summary of what I think is the current position on captions on this page: User:Fir0002/FPC captions. Basically the issue is again with demands for POTD captions. Jeff Dahl made the comment on my talkpage that a lot of the confusion regarding caption needs stems from the nomination template with it's misleading "proposed caption" field. Jeff suggested that it should be changed to "Optional extended caption" - and I agree. Although with this change in place it would be necessary to also add a field for just "caption" as otherwise voters may think the caption itself is an optional thing. What do others think? --Fir0002 22:23, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Hm, I don't see what the big problem is. If you nominate a picture it should already be in an article. If it is really so super-amazing then chances are that some article contributor already wrote a caption. If not, a) just wait with your nomination until someone writes it or b) try writing one yourself (preferably in the original article, not just for FPC). That actually makes you think whether the image is useful and contributes to the article. Why would anyone be so reluctant about an essential encyclopedic device like a proper caption?! --Dschwen 23:20, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
Did you read the linked User:Fir0002/FPC captions? This isn't about whether or not a caption should be included ( or for that matter noms with short legs which you're turning it into) as the presence of a caption is not being disputed. What is being disputed is the trend towards demanding a POTD caption (aka an article rehash). --Fir0002 23:52, 10 December 2007 (UTC)
I tend to agree with Fir0002 that we don't need enormous captions, especially when they're fairly unrelated to the image. For example this nom, where an enormous 'caption' that's just been copied-and-pasted straight from the article doesn't even mention what the bird is - well what good is that? (And yet, since that long caption went in, no one's complained about it).
I think there may be a bit of a happy medium though - a caption like what would actually caption the image in an article, but perhaps with a little bit more length and information (and when I say a bit, I mean maybe another short sentence). The reason for this is to give the picture a bit more context for FPC voters, given that on FPC the picture's no longer in the context of its article.
Now whether that caption is presented as the actual image caption (instead of, or preferably as well as, the default Original that the template creates), or whether it goes in the Proposed Caption section, or whether it goes in both, I think is immaterial. --jjron (talk) 07:30, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
To reiterate from earlier discussions, for POTD I want details that I can't find in the articles. Ideally, the "proposed caption" should be on the image description page so that it's readily available to anyone and should provide details that are specific to this image. howcheng {chat} 17:23, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
So then people should be encouraged to edit the image namespace (yes, the text portion *sigh*). The bottom line is that (a) there has to be something that can be used to judge the encyclopaedic value of an image, otherwise we might as well just run with the commons FPs, and (b) experts in specific subject areas should be able to have some input into the caption that ends up on POTD to help avoid ambiguities and inaccuracies, and avoid the relevance paradox. Samsara (talk  contribs) 18:07, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
[...] on FPC the picture's no longer in the context of its article – that's it in a nutshell. Also, I usually add a brief caption when I upload an image, largely cos I'd forget to do it later, but also to give anyone who might want to use the image a few pointers as to excatly what is being illustrated. Hence a caption might need only be a latin name and a location for an insect (you can look it up in the encyclopedia if you want to know more) or might need to be more descriptive for (say) an event, portrait or landscape, which (a) might not have one specific article to refer to, or (b) may contain nuts a detail not immediately obvious to the viewer. --mikaultalk 18:13, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
Agree wholly with Samsara. The caption could be worked out collaboratively on the FPC page and then transferred to the image description page upon closing (regardless of promotion or not). howcheng {chat} 18:34, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
Uhm, no. That'll just amount to a few photography nerds creating captions on biology, architecture, history etc. Let the people who have clue about the subject matter do the captions. The photographers' task is to provide correct location and time data and point out special circumstances when the picture was taken. --Dschwen 19:33, 11 December 2007 (UTC)
That should be the bare minimum. When you consider that photography is the only form of OR encouraged in article namespace, the photographer is in a privileged position to describe the unique circumstances surrounding the shot; important information that provides the basis or context of a caption. I'd say this "level" of info, combined with a basic identification of the subject, is all a caption needs to add up to, for FP purposes at least. A POD then uses that info as the basis for an ad hoc extended caption. In essence, a caption either need only be a few words (as per these kinds of subjects/circumstances), or a few sentences (as is the case with this one, for example), depending on how unique those circumstances were. I broadly agree with Fir's account of this caption malarky and would also like to see the nomination template amended to remove reference to the Main Page, but I do think a caption should be mandatory for FPC, and for some subjects, more than just a few words. --mikaultalk 22:39, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

The bottom line is that whatever procedure is used for captioning needs to be explained, (and documented!) in a clear, succinct way (and in the right place, not a talk page archive) so that people will know what to do. How can anyone follow a procedure that's not spelled out? I'm struggling to understand what is supposed to be in the extended caption; Howcheng reiterates: "I want details that I can't find in the articles." But there has got to be more to the story than this. Recent POTD captions do contain at least some information that's in the article, which is a good thing. Perhaps a more detailed explanation of what's to go in the extended caption would be helpful. Jeff Dahl (Talkcontribs) 19:17, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

It's a FP criteria issue. Rather than clog up the FP criteria page any more, we could add a summary of whatever the consensus is from this dicsussion as a subpage to WP:FP?, as was done with several other criteria. The criterion #7 footnote would be a good enough place for a brief explanation and link. --mikaultalk 22:50, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

Quick Vote

Alright can we have a quick vote to see if it's consensus to change the template so that "proposed caption" is reworded as "optional extended caption" and that either the standard "original" image thumbnail caption is modifiable or a new section with "caption" is added (thus ensuring the image has a "standard" caption)

  • Support --Fir0002 04:40, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
    • Hey Fir, if we support this, does that mean you're going to start following/using the template? ;-) --jjron (talk) 07:51, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
      • Umm maybe - but probably not, I'm quite comfortable doing it manually (after a lot of practice!) --Fir0002 21:35, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
        • I understand that you're comfortable, but I actually think part of the problem is that particularly newer and irregular voters are confronted and confused by your 'old school' nominations, when everyone else has moved on. --jjron (talk) 09:41, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
          • Well there's no school like the old school! :) But there may be something in what you said - I'll try out the new method --Fir0002 00:38, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
  • Comment. Changing the wording of the template seems a tad pointless to me, as the current "proposed caption" in no way implies "extended caption" and is more flexible that way; in other words, in the current template, you can put a POTD caption or an in-article style caption in the same place. It seems that with this proposal, one type of caption goes one place, and the other goes on the image thumbnail--complicated. Wouldn't we be better served by editing the FP criterion that says something like "has a caption suitable for display on the main page"? IMO editing that line would be a clearer indication of whatever new consensus we arrive at regarding captions. --Malachirality (talk) 07:02, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I agree with Malachirality. I quote the exact text from the FPC template (I think) he's talking about:

    caption = the extended caption of the image, providing adequate context, with prose suitable for display on the Main Page

    What we should do is change the part about having 'prose suitable for...the Main Page'. That to me is clearly what's making people think they need a POTD caption. If we edited that to read:

    caption = the caption of the image, providing adequate context

    I reckon we'd just about have this problem fixed. --jjron (talk) 07:48, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
    • The criterion in question has a footnote describing an optional PoD-style caption as "helpful". I don't think that conflicts with consensus here. All that should be removed from the footnote is the phrase "extended caption", which amounts to the same thing as a POTD caption. Very confusing. I've amended it already. --mikaultalk 09:45, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
      • Yeah sure. You're talking about criterion 7 here, I'm talking about the instructions within the FPC template itself. It's pretty important that these are in clear agreement. --jjron (talk) 13:38, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
        • I was actually referring to Malachirality's post, but true enough, consistency would be a bonus. --mikaultalk 13:50, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • Comment I don't think we have to require a complete "POTD caption" every time - in some cases, the photographer probably isn't even competent enough in the subject matter in order to provide one! However, since this is an encyclopedia and not Commons, something must be provided to give context; if the FPC is of an animal, the minimum we should ask for is English and Latin names + where, when, and if it's doing something, an explanation. If it's a location or a building, the exact name & place. If a phenomenon, an explanation in addition to the above. Of the current FPCs, I'd say the vulture and sparrow need more info in the caption (e.g. Latin name missing), and the housefly caption seems, how should I put it, a bit unsophisticated... In contrast, the proposed caption for Gibraltar is excellent and informative. No more than that is needed - or do we want the caption to be an abstract of the entire article? Surely not? --Janke | Talk 07:42, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I've already waffled on enough, so I'll try & keep it brief. I support this in so far as we don't need "proposed captions" or "optional extended caption" fields in the nomination template, we just need a way of making a proper standard caption appear under a FPC image, as Fir suggests.
    A proper caption should be mandatory! - no exceptions!
    If people feel theres a need to provide the option of an extended caption, the relevant field in the template should be an optional "description" field, which maybe transcludes (and clearly relates) to the "description" on the image description page.
    The other requirement is a way of clarifying this (per Jeff Dahl, above) so that people understand what a proper caption should be. We already have a link from the footnote of criterion #7 to a section of WP:captions which is in dire need of updating, but this is all that we need amend. I'd encourage people to add their suggestions to the relevant talk page section there. --mikaultalk 10:14, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
    • Meant to add my agreement with Malachirality and jjron re the wording. It could be a little less wooly, though. --mikaultalk 10:23, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
      • OK does someone know how to go about changing the template? --Fir0002 21:35, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
        • Don't worry I've gone ahead and been bold and changed the template. That's a very good step in the right direction, but I guess we still need to add a little more detail in WP:WIAFP? to explain what is desired in a caption. --Fir0002 21:41, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
        • Hm, yeah, this turns out to be acceptable I guess. It'd just be a bit sad if that would lead to more work being offloaded to Howcheng. But maybe he should comment on that. --Dschwen 22:38, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • Well the nominator (and I think the creator) get notified of an upcoming POTD which asks for help on the caption. This is a primary reason why I believe it is unnecessary to spend time hacking out a caption for the nom. --Malachirality (talk) 22:59, 12 December 2007 (UTC)
  • Well if you read User:Fir0002/FPC captions you'd see that the nominator's "help" isn't really that sought after - "I don't want rehashes of the article -- I can do that myself when I write the POTD blurb"--Fir0002 05:59, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
  • And to also quote Howcheng from above in this discussion: "To reiterate from earlier discussions, for POTD I want details that I can't find in the articles. Ideally, the "proposed caption" should be on the image description page so that it's readily available to anyone and should provide details that are specific to this image." --jjron (talk) 09:31, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
  • In view of comments questioning the veracity of photographers' non-specialist knowledge, wouldn't it be a good idea to ask for help at the (key) article that an FP appears in? Rather than add to the Howcheng burden, just amend the {{notifyPOTD}} template, suggesting the nominator add a note (and image page link) to the article talk page, asking for expert contributions. Not guaranteed to add to POTD caption quality, but likely to iron out factual errors, WP:UNDUE issues, etc before it appears on the main page. Gets FPCers off the hook, too :o) --mikaultalk 17:29, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
        • I suggested a footnote link to the WPCaptions#describing pictures section earlier, more out of a desire to avoid cluttering the criteria page than anything else, but it's probably better to make FP caption requirements more prominent than that. I've made a rough guide start over on the criteria talk page, if anyone's interested in contributing. Obviously, if it proves to be over-bulky, we can still go the footnote route. --mikaultalk 19:04, 13 December 2007 (UTC)
          • Good thinking with the footnote. I've also made another change to the nomination template, bringing the caption where it belongs (IMO) - underneath the image. --Fir0002 00:51, 16 December 2007 (UTC)
            • Hey, that's pretty nifty. I only realised what you meant when I just did a nomination; I didn't know you could make it do that. --jjron (talk) 06:58, 19 December 2007 (UTC)


Wow, 37 noms at one given time. Must be the Christmas spirit... Chris.B (talk) 15:49, 24 December 2007 (UTC)

Or maybe it's something to do with this... --jjron (talk) 04:13, 31 December 2007 (UTC)

Error on the FPC page

The Interwikilink to the other FPC-pages contains an error. There are two links to the German project ("Deutsch"). One links to the German FPC page, but above that there's another link to "Deutsch" that links to a userpage (Benutzer:Wa). This should be deleted. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:05, 28 December 2007 (UTC)

It's gone away now, as it was transcluded from one of the nominations. MER-C 03:08, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

1000 FPs

The 1000th featured picture - A Tau Emerald, Hemicordulia tau, in flight over a creek

The English Wikipedia now has 1000 featured pictures. The 1000th FP is of a dragonfly in flight, see its nomination. Congratulations to Fir0002, who took this image and all those who have contributed to the featured picture process here on Wikipedia! MER-C 03:06, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

Hooray! I win [pool]. Congrats to Fir0002 and all the rest of us. Spikebrennan (talk) 15:28, 30 December 2007 (UTC)
Good call, more than two months out! One entrant, one winner. And probably fitting for Fir to get number 1000. --jjron (talk) 03:59, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
Well, it might have had something to do with "Fir's Christmas special" as he called it, where he added 5 noms at the perfect time to get th 1000th FP. Maybe it was coincidence, I certainly wasn't checking the FP count, but Fir, did you plan this out by any chance? ;-) -Fcb981(talk:contribs) 13:28, 31 December 2007 (UTC)
It was the wishes of the Cabal that Fir gets the 1000th FP. MER-C 03:35, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
Hehe and you can't go arguing with them can you? ;-) --Fir0002 07:10, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
And don't you have around 100 FPs by now? I think I've got about 50. Combined, we've contributed 15% of all FPs on wikipedia. Interesting. :-) Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 08:14, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
Yeah - 101 to be exact! I wonder what that percentage would be if you didn't include NASA and other non-wikipedians? --Fir0002 10:24, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
We need to stop emphasising the 1000th, millionth, 2 millionth etc. and start giving proper dues to the really hardworking members of the community who do more than chase whimsical short term goals. I was really hoping that we could avoid singling out yet another minor contributor at the 2 millionth milestone, but alas, "we" proved short-sighted yet again. Samsara (talk  contribs) 09:51, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
I don't mean to be rude, but I do have a couple of issues with this... 1; I don't think we don't give proper dues to the hardworking members of the community. 2; I don't think that it is singling out a minor contributor in this case - Fir0002 is by far the highest volume contributor to FPs and it probably just coincidence that he happened to be the contributor of the 1000th FP. 3; To single out a specific contributor at a milestone doesn't automatically mean we can't appreciate other contributors. It is just trivia something to be objective about when so much of the work done for wikipedia is subjective. No harm done in my opinion. Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 11:27, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
Indeed.. not only are short-term goals good motivators, individual contributions (however outstanding) are only a by-line to the broader community effort in achieving those goals. If there are unsung heroes among us there may be a need for more formal mechanisms to recognise them with, but it doesn't imply ignorance or disregard of their efforts. Featured content happens to be a particularly high-profile mechanism by which we recognise outstanding community effort; surely the authors of that content are to be congratulated rather than sneered at? Ultimately, if you offer high-profile, goal-based incentives like this you shouldn't be surprised when the achievement of those goals is a little more "in your face" than others. --mikaultalk 12:24, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
I should have known to stay away. You clearly didn't read what I wrote before declaring yourselves fit to reply. Samsara (talk  contribs) 14:24, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
If you want to remain cryptic and misunderstood, fine, but I feel like I read your reply and responded to your point(s) directly. If both Mick and I didn't get you, could it be that you didn't express yourself as clearly as you could have? You sound pretty defeatist and bitter. Diliff | (Talk) (Contribs) 00:00, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

It's great that we've hit 1000 featured pictures, but also consider we have well over 1500 featured articles. I think this is great, and the way it should be since the focus of an encyclopedia should be on articles. Yet I am puzzled by the difference, due to the relative difficulty of making a featured article compared with that of a featured picture in both creating the content and going through the featured content process. Instead of being an exercise in bean-counting, this milestone should be a reminder that we are falling behind and have work to do! Jeff Dahl (Talkcontribs) 03:38, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

Not to rain on the parade, but...

Featured Picture breakdown by Category
Featured Picture breakdown by Category

Spurred on by the comments above about how the spread between Wikipedian and non-Wikipedian created images would fall, I did a quick count of the FPs.

So I get about 61% Wikipedian created (Fir0002 and Diliff can calculate their own percentages, but between them they're looking at about a quarter). The only problem is that I get 999 total - the count on Wikipedia:Featured pictures page says 1004.

Hopefully I've missed something somewhere. Anyone care to do a recount (because I don't)? --jjron (talk) 15:35, 1 January 2008 (UTC)

I found three deleted images. This agrees with my count of featured pictures (1001). MER-C 03:55, 2 January 2008 (UTC)
OK, so 1004 - 3 = 1001, add in what looks like 2 new ones = 1003 (vs 1001 on my list). So 2 missing in the table here - be interesting to know what. --jjron (talk) 10:53, 3 January 2008 (UTC)
I think you're missing the two animations in Wikipedia:Featured pictures/Culture, entertainment, and lifestyle --Fir0002 21:59, 3 January 2008 (UTC)
Yep, looks like that's what I missed. Good pickup. List is now updated and correct as of 4 January, 2008. Makes some interesting reading. I've also included a graph for anyone that's interested. --jjron (talk) 10:27, 4 January 2008 (UTC)

Taking stock: Outreach

Since we seem to be taking stock and congratulating ourselves on the success of this project, let me explain to you why I think it has been a colossal failure so far.

The number of featured pictures covers a minute proportion of article space. For our over 2 million articles, we have one thousand featured photographs and illustrations. That is less than one thousandth of a featured image per article, and is clearly satisfactory. Furthermore, if we continue at our current rate of taking photographs, we will not reach the goal of having a comprehensive gallery of the world around us by the end of our lives. While Wikipedia at large has slowed down, FPC especially has not had any remarkable new recruits recently - it's the same faces over and over again.

How did we arrive at this situation? The answer is simple: we did not work to avoid it. What we should have done a long time ago is reached out to professional photographers everywhere and encourage them to contribute some proportion of their pictures. Why might this work? Because through attribution, users who like certain images might want to find out who the photographer is, and purchase other photos, photo books, etc. from/by him/her. Which photographers might this appeal to? I am thinking particularly landscape, wildlife and food photographers who want to be the next big thing in coffee table books. Why would they contribute photos under our unfavourable terms, given that their copyrighted photos are the basis of their business? Because even if they gave us their "B" quality photos, they'd still be much better than what we have in many cases. With today's megapixel counts, they could give us downsampled images, and we'd still be very happy (and guess what, some people will complain anyway).

Why might it NOT work? Because photographers may not want to be associated with their B quality material, in which case, they wouldn't want to be attributed, but then their photos can't serve as advertisements (oh no, I said a dirty word - well, suck it up, you have to give if you want to get, or you'll just be stealing from paupers).

I'll be happy to hear from anyone who has ideas how to work around this dilemma, and any professional photographer who would like to prove me wrong in my assessment.

PS: Yes, I know that some photographers may be bound contractually or by personality rights not to release their pictures to us. Nonetheless, in cases where the contractual restrictions are counter-productive for all concerned, those photographers should be encouraged to seek more favourable terms at the next opportunity.

PPS: I respect efforts by liquidGhoul and others to get photographers to release their pictures, and think they are commendable. However, I also think we should aim higher and encourage more direct participation from photographers.

Samsara (talk  contribs) 16:35, 1 January 2008 (UTC)

  • While I generally support your thoughts, and think outreach/diversification would be great, I am confused by at least two things you said. You complain that only 1/1000th of all articles are illustrated by FPs - but FPs are by definition the very best images on the project. The "very best" cannot be more than a small percentage by its very nature. Secondly you say there are few new faces here. Secondly, check out [this archive of FP noms from 1 year ago - besides a group of about 10 editors, almost all the names in the signatures are different. The turn over rate of participants in the discussions seems reasonably high to me. de Bivort 17:48, 1 January 2008 (UTC)
    • First off, FPs, as you rightly say, are the best images. They have discrete criteria that can be met. There is no reason why each article can't have one of the best images. This would simply mean that a lot of mediocre images would become orphaned, which is just the way things go. On your second point, we seem to be talking about different things. My interest is in the photographers, not the commenters. And as far as photographers are concerned, I see the same names there that I see now: Diliff, Fir, Alvesgaspar. If anything has changed, it seems to be that many people who used to contribute have left. I think if you counted the number of contributors and compared it to today, you'd find it to be a disappointing statistic! The size of the 2006 archive was 231kB compared with 196kB for the equivalent in 2007. The same trend holds for November and October. So even if we restrict our attention to the number of commenters, it seems we're in decline. Samsara (talk  contribs) 21:52, 1 January 2008 (UTC)

What I see as the problem is that our standards may be too high and arbitrary, and this causes photographers to leave. MER-C 05:19, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

  • A couple of erm, quick points in response to all this:
  1. AFAICS, the long-term consensus is to keep FP quality standards high, even if this appears to discourage new featured content. Like FAs, FPs are a carefully selected body of work which demonstrates the best we have to offer. It's not a collection of images which we then selectively illustrate the encyclopedia with, it's the other way around. This misconception is clouding some judgment here, I think. It's an indication, but not a measure, of the overall quality of image content on wikipedia. If anything, FPC is instrumental in raising quality levels overall, whether this results in more FPs or not.
  2. I'm not sure we ever seriously considered creating another level of recognition, something like Quality Images over on commons. If this was combined with a real effort to get existing editors to shoot more (and tackle the backlog at FP:RP in the process) I think we'd begin to narrow the ratio of quality images to quality articles. It's the only way of getting even close to every article having a quality image without completely voiding the "featured" ethos which serves the encyclopedia so well.
  3. Soliciting contributions from professional photographers won't necessarily be reflected in the FP count, nor is it (currently) the best way of raising image quality overall. Shooting for an encyclopedia really is a very specialised craft; shooting for FPC even more so. The criteria are quite arcane, when you think about it, and soliciting our regular contributors is probably a much more productive option. Featured images are really an incidental bonus to all of this. Basically, we should be looking for quality content first, and looking closer to home for it. Ultimately, there's only one thing better than a featured picture, and that's one exclusive to wikipedia.
  4. The next-biggest barrier to getting regular contributions from professional photographers is time. They need to be aware of our WP:RP lists, which means getting actively involved in the wiki, which most (I'd say) are too busy to do. The point about exposure is valid enough, but not strong enough to divert resources per se. You do get the occasional one (ahem) who happens to be into the wiki for other reasons, but they're very few and far between.
  5. Licensing is by far the biggest issue. We desperately need a non-com option if there are to be any chances of securing regular contributions from commercial shooters. So long as good photos = income, no self-respecting professional is going to publish sub-par stuff that clearly won't sell; basically the point about exposure becomes null. Then ask yourself how much of your future income you'd happily sign over to wikipedia, and you'll see why most begging letters will most likely go unanswered.
    1. Personally, anything I shoot that's good enough to publish anywhere, I will try to sell. Sometimes I'll have a shot which is too subject-specific or downright dull (creatively speaking), or (rarer still) I'll shoot specifically for the encyclopedia, but if it has rights-managed potential, I'd be a fool to upload it here. I originally started uploading reject shots and quickly realised I'm shooting myself in the foot exposure-wise, so that's stopped. Out of my entire archive I think I've uploaded around 30 images, and I'm still not sure I've done the right thing. Hence I'm keeping my contributions, at least for now, to FPC commentary, article editing, the GraphicLab, and so on. I'd love to provide more images and probably will, on occasion, but if there was a decent non-com option I could easily release dozens of shots for use here, and I'm sure many others would too.
    2. Another avenue might also open with more favourable licensing: images already used and paid for (for commercial purposes) could be released for use here as illustrations. One example of this discussed elsewhere is high-quality shots of the wines, production processes and vineyards commissioned by major winemakers around the world. I know editors over at WP:WINE would dearly love to embellish their articles with this work, but without an available non-com license there's little to no chance of this ever happening.
  6. As this nom illustrated in passing, there are other ways around licensing issues, and tackling some less commercial fields (like the landscape/nature examples mentioned) might bring forth photographers willing to contribute under GFDL. I wouldn't put this suggestion down, but these do represent very small niches in a very large encyclopedia, and the nature and landscape categories are already heavily over-represented in our FPs and proliferate in article mainspace.
  7. It would probably be easier to try to get professional photographers to shoot specifically for wikipedia than release existing shots under a free license. I'm greatly encouraged by the Greenspun sponsorship for illustrations, and while this doesn't currently include photographic illustration I think a future extension of it might.. and if it did, you might finally have a platform onto which some professionals would happily climb. At the moment there's nothing but disincentive; a tiny carrot may be all that's needed to reverse that. Let's see how that pans out. Meanwhile, contrary to appearances at FPC, the resources we have "in house" are considerable. While I don't agree that the FPC process is in decline, I do think there's not enough positive encouragement of our in-house talent. I also think FPC is a great way of instructing keen photo contributors on the best way to shoot for the encyclopedia; we just need to provide a more accessible arena (something like a Quality Images page) for that talent to express itself. --mikaultalk 19:25, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for your comments, mikaul, here are some replies:

  1. Like FAs, FPs are a carefully selected body of work which demonstrates the best we have to offer. FPs are limited by what is notable. If an article is comprehensive, referenced, well-illustrated, and well-written, there is nothing more to add. Articles reach a point where everything notable has been included and adequately described. So at the very least, the analogy you are making is flawed. The question you are asking is, "is there a perfect cherry flower?" (Manga fans may appreciate...) If perfect flowers exist, then every article can have an FP. At the moment, most browsers don't allow viewing images at several different zoom levels; FPs in resolutions much beyond 3000 width (which seems to be a common figure these days) only make sense if it's easy for readers to view intermediate sizes, or zoom in and out without seams.
  2. completely voiding the "featured" ethos which serves the encyclopedia so well. WP:GA hasn't killed off featured articles. I can't see FPC being replaced as the first step to deciding what gets shown on the front page.
  3. Ultimately, there's only one thing better than a featured picture, and that's one exclusive to wikipedia. - that's not plausible given our licensing requirements, as you note yourself in a later comment. You may know that the reason we have the commercial use requirement is that (according to legend) Jimbo didn't want to forever exclude the possibility of allowing advertising and/or copies of Wikipedia in other formats (books, CDs?) if there was a decent non-com option I could easily release dozens of shots for use here, and I'm sure many others would too. It's nice that we've largely arrived at the same conclusions. The only thing that remains to be said is that the possibility of a WP fork that allows noncom licenses exists. I'm not even sure that this precludes commercial use, since where alternative images exist, an image permitting commercial use could be listed as a stand-in for the commercial one, to cater for books and CDs.

I'm surprised you haven't commented on the possibility of releasing copyright for downsampled versions of images. I'm left wondering whether you feel that this could also be detrimental to one's reputation, or that simply the size you would be willing to release would be below what's required of FPs.

Finally, I agree that sponsorship would be nice. I think this is what a lot of people have been waiting for for some time. Meritocracy rises and falls with the rewards offered. However, I'm not one to take recourse in crystal ball arguments. I think there are things we can do without sponsorship. Things that we haven't done yet. Samsara (talk  contribs) 00:52, 3 January 2008 (UTC)

Although we seem to be broadly in agreement, I'm confused by a number of your replies, which I think it stem from a misunderstanding in your first. There are two distinct issues here: quality image content and Featured Pictures. Of course, on this page we should be talking about the latter, however most of the points made have a much wider relevance and are relevant to FPs only in passing.
The first point I made was simply a statement of fact to clarify things, not a question nor an analogy, so your reply puzzles me. You mention the lack of zoom factors, which I agree make hi-res images difficult to view (we need intermediate viewing sizes, basically) but this again is a more general quality image issue. The point is that FPs, like all featured content, are ambassadors for wikipedia content in general - period. The FP collection has no other purpose. Of course, people should be encouraged to shoot for featured status & this does inspire better image content. As you (I think) infer, it's no bad thing to aim for perfection. But we don't need a FP in every article; that's like saying every article should be FA. There's certainly no harm in broadcasting success, and we are celebrating 1000 FPs as a tribute to those who have aimed that high and scored. Nothing further need be implied or inferred.
One analogy I did imply was between GA and something like the commons' QI, both of which serve the same "cherry blossom" purpose as featured content. My "void" point was aimed at suggestions of lowering FPC standards, not broadening the range of incentives.
By "exclusive" WP images I meant those which originate here, rather than NASA etc. The issue with free licensing is insurmountable, I think, for this version. I'm personally uninterested in fork versions. Lets not forget the greatest carrot currently available to professionals is exposure on the 8th most popular website. Commissioning would remove all licensing barriers but create resentment, I fear, among volunteer contributors, so it's probably going to be a "late-stage" move for the wiki, and would spawn god knows what kind of forks and versions. All so much crystal balls, as you say ;o)
On the downsampling thing, I don't personally differentiate, other than to upload the minimum size necessary to do the job. For FPC, that's (unofficially) around the 1.5MP mark; anything bigger would certainly discourage many who value their work for other purposes. --mikaultalk 14:08, 3 January 2008 (UTC)

Current featured pictures not meeting the size limit

The following featured pictures do not meet the size limit. They are all very old (they were all POTD in 2004) and I think that most, if not all, should be delisted if higher resolutions cannot be located.

I'm hoping that someone here will have the time to go through these images and contact the uploaders to ask for higher resolution or nominate them for delisting. Mahahahaneapneap (talk) 00:10, 2 January 2008 (UTC)

You're welcome to do so if you wish. Some of them may be able to be delisted, but I wouldn't be rushing to put them all up just because of size. I know Image:Rolling-thunder-cloud.jpg for one is a regular candidate for delist (mainly due to size) - it always gets kept, and I think we've established we can't find a bigger version. For mine, an image needs to fail on more than just size to be 'worthy' of delisting. Refer also to this for a recent discussion on this topic. --jjron (talk) 10:46, 4 January 2008 (UTC)

Holiday warning

I'll be gone for a week starting the 11th of January. Does anyone want to stand in? MER-C 10:43, 5 January 2008 (UTC)

I could do maybe a day or two but I'll probably be going away on the 12th myself --Fir0002 11:01, 5 January 2008 (UTC)
I should be able to do a few as well. And if some end up sitting around for a few days longer than usual, then so be it. --jjron (talk) 12:00, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
I can also lend a hand. Chris.B (talk) 13:24, 6 January 2008 (UTC)
I don't even look at the dates of nomination any more, because I know MER-C will close every single nom.  ;-) Thanks for the heads-up; I think everyone here together can handle a week of closing candidates. - Enuja (talk) 17:39, 6 January 2008 (UTC)

Heheh. Looks like few of us have the discipline to not !vote so we can be closers. ^^ Samsara noadmin (talk) 18:10, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

I'm back. Thanks for your hard work. MER-C 10:54, 18 January 2008 (UTC)

Excess bokeh

This is a longer post, but please take the time to read, think, and maybe comment on it. Thank you.

In going through the Commons Picture of the Year candidates, I noticed that a lot of images have been uploaded and chosen as FPs in which the main subject is only partially in focus, with the background entirely blended, sometimes into a uniform colour. I feel this may represent an unhealthy obsession with bokeh that may have been driven by the way people !vote for articles. I feel that one of the first criteria for a featured picture should be whether the main subject is wholly in focus. I'll give you some examples so you can judge for yourselves whether a smaller aperture and longer exposure should have been used for the following pictures:

These are not the only examples. Commons FPs can be viewed by submission month and subject here.

Sometimes, limited DOF can be used to good artistic effect, and I hope you'll agree that the image below differs from those listed above in this respect:

Of course, this image couldn't serve as a complete description of the animal in the way a plainer image could (I do mean plainer rather than planar, although the latter could be seen as a subset).

I hope that I've also been able to convince you that it's not just macro shots that get submitted with extra bokeh. Also, for all the insect shots where a leg or two, or perhaps the antennae, are out of focus, I've been able to find a similar picture where at least one full set of extremities was in focus, e.g.

Keep in mind that for animal photographs, the background can contain interesting additional information about the habitat the animal lives in. Keeping a smaller aperture allows you to retain more of this information, e.g.

I half suspect that when photographing fast animal subjects, some photographers choose a camera setting that auto-minimises shutter time, increasing aperture and lowering DOF, just on the off chance that the subject might run/fly off, to give themselves a chance of either catching the subject before this happens, or getting a flight/moving photograph without having to change settings. Maybe if you fall into this category, you can just think about your settings again.

To my mind, digitally blurring the background isn't a huge crime, but not having enough DOF in the first place may put your photos beyond salvaging. (And let's face it, bokeh is nothing but deliberate blur. Power of words, eh?)

And as for macro photos, you may sometimes have the option of choosing a "less macro" lens and getting an image that may have a smaller resolution for the main subject, require cropping, but gives you more DOF.

Finally, some apologies for using commons FPs to illustrate this. It probably applies to WP FPs to a lesser extent, but I still felt it was worth bringing up given that there seems to be a trend for increasing amounts of bokeh, with images sometimes dismissed just for lack thereof. So this is also an appeal to people who !vote on FPCs here, to please place the encyclopaedic merits of an image first in their thoughts.

Is that making sense?

Separa (talk) 12:29, 11 January 2008 (UTC)

I think it's easier to argue that the entire subject needs to be in focus on Wikipedia than it is on commons, and I think that more images with the main subject partly out of focus are promoted as featured on Commons than on Wikipedia. Essentially, I think the trend that bothers you does not exist on Wikipedia. Also, there are a lot of posts above and in the Archives in which one person is trying to convince other people what's wrong with which images get promoted, and I don't think any of them convinced anyone. If there is something wrong with the criteria, that's what needs to be changed. If there is something wrong with a particular person's reasoning, you should talk to that person directly. If you just want the pictures you like to be promoted and the pictures you don't like not to be promoted, the best you can do is to vote. - Enuja (talk) 00:47, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
  • You say that Bokeh is just deliberate blur, a simple choice by the photographer. Well in the types of pictures you used to illustrate you point it really is none of that. When taking pictures of birds, or animals, or insects, or small flowers, you are using either 1) A reasonably long telephoto lens or 2) A macro lens. Either way, getting sufficient DOF is far from easy. The is a long post above by Fir0002 about macro sharpness vs. diffraction from stopping down and it showed that beyond f/18 or so, the whole image will be essentially OOF. With long lenses, its less of a problem except that at 400mm on a 1.5x sensor you need a shutter speed of 1/600th of a second. Hardly easy at f/8 or similar. I would also argue that for most of the insect/wildlife pictures, large DOF is not a good thing. Creatures, because of evolution, generally match their backgrounds fairly well. Their backgrounds are rarely simple, the backgrounds have tones of detail that you wouldn't get in human portraiture in urban environments. Without isolation, the subjects would be poorly defined and the pictures would lose the 3rd dimension that would be hard to come by otherwise in tight cropped animal portraits. I hope this is fairly clear. Essentially, I feel like the times are rare in animal/insect when one would need both a tight crop AND very large DOF. -Fcb981(talk:contribs) 01:34, 12 January 2008 (UTC)


Should WP:FPC and/or the header be move-protected?   jj137 00:19, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

I don't think it's necessary. MER-C 02:53, 21 January 2008 (UTC)
Maybe not, but just to be on the safe side... (some other important pages are, WP:ACC, WP:RPP, WP:AN, WP:ANI, etc.)   jj137 02:53, 21 January 2008 (UTC)

Photographic Masters' Guild

I'm proud to announce my contribution to recognising the work done by Wikipedians - and naturally it's in the field of photography! It's called the Photographic Masters' Guild and it aims at recognising the best photographers in the English Wikipedia. If you think you qualify leave a note on my talkpage - and I'll start hunting out eligible users (beyond the obvious recipients of Diliff, Mdf and Aka whom I've already awarded) in the next few days as well. All the best and hopefully this may motivate more fine contributions! --Fir0002 11:39, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

  • If I understand well, this honor is supposed to be granted by Fir0002, not by some jury. BTW, who granted it to Fir0002? -- Alvesgaspar (talk) 11:46, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
    • Who granted it to Fir? If I may be so brash, perhaps we can assume (by default) the many hundreds of users who have voted in 100+ of his photos as FPs, and the 20 odd that have given him photographer's barnstars? Things have to start somewhere... --jjron (talk) 00:47, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose. We alredy have the photo barnstar. A personal award by Fir is not needed. This is a community, not a forum for elitist vanity. --Janke | Talk 13:06, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Janke. There are plenty of other non-encyclopedia venues in which you can flex your photo meritocracy muscle. de Bivort 15:08, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Comment At the risk of continuing this line, I don't think Fir was asking for a vote. The award is within his user space, I figure he can do pretty much what he feels like. I'm not crazy about having the award in a user-space and I'm pretty indifferent to the award in general. I would suggest creating a wikiproject for the guild, or maybe there is a more appropriate namespace... if community consensus is against the wikiproject, then it would be deleted, but in Firs User-space I would argue that you should leave leave it alone. Lets not be the Gestapo. -Fcb981(talk:contribs) 15:26, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Umm, no action has been taken against Fir, so I don't see how you're comfortable calling us the Gestapo. He posted the announcement here, I oppose the idea, I said that I oppose it here. de Bivort 16:06, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • <sarcasm>Oh, my mistake, putting the "Oppose" in bold after a bullet and then saying: "Per Janke" clearly wasn't a vote and I see that now. How could I have been so silly to think that your comment was a vote and that at that the effect of that vote would be some kind of action? </sarcasm> Are you suggesting that this is the improper time to argue what I did above. According to you, I should wait until action has been taken, then raise concerns? What else? I included myself in the Gestapo phrase, implying that I wasn't alienating you or Janke and was simply adding a closing remark. If that offended you, my apologies. -Fcb981(talk:contribs) 22:08, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • <sincerity> Yeah, probably a bit silly. As we all know, User space is "off limits" to other users, so I'm not sure what action you could have thought these opinions would lead to. </sincerity> de Bivort 22:26, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Whoa, let's be a bit more collegial. He's taking the initiative to do something for the community. DurovaCharge! 16:38, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

**Like he takes the initiative to ignore community consensus in regards to the voting icons? Fir can do whatever he wishes in his userspace, but I think most people don't particularly support public initiatives that glorify a select few. There is no point announcing it here if it is a private award. pschemp | talk 20:40, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

  • Ah it looks like it wasn't such a good idea to do this just before going to bed. Let me address some of your concerns.
    • Re:Alvesgaspar - The award initially is going to be awarded by myself, but as mentioned on the homepage any member may give it out to another deserving photographer. I obviously granted it to myself, although the primary reason was so that I could provide a template for future awardees to follow. I mean I could have filled out a profile for someone else but I thought I'd let them do it themselves.
    • Re:Janke - what exactly are you opposing? As described on the homepage, the Photographic Barnstar is now a poor way to honour deserving members of the community. "Elitist vanity" is a bit uncalled for surely? I'm assuming you're not against encouraging members of the community?
    • Re:de Bivort - I'm not sure what you mean? There's a whole list of user created awards Wikipedia:Personal user awards...
      • Yeah, I know of such things. I'm not sure they're good for the community, but I haven't considered each one individually. My specific concerns with your idea stem mostly from the concern that if a select few get fancy awards ... (and they will be few with your requirement of 10 FP shots - I have ~10 FP noms, but only of few of my own shots, but hundreds of votes and another dozen edits or so, so I would never be in contention for Guild membership) ... this will have various negative consequences. Like: 1) elevating the nominal credibility of some commentors during photo evaluation, 2) alienating new contributions by seeming to raise the bar on new noms, 3) furthering the sense of a CABAL. Obviously the main advantage would be to encourage new photography, but don't regular photo barnstars, do this without the need for the apparent elitism of a club? de Bivort 22:26, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
        • I don't think we'd get the negative reaction you describe (except perhaps an influx of nominations) if the commons MOP is any guide. Particularly no.1 is unlikely to occur as can be seen from commons voting - also to reiterate an argument from above it's not like MER-C is going to be fooled? Another parallel can be drawn from Administrators - you don't see them getting extra credibility during discussions do you? I would respectfully disagree that photo barnstars do too much in the way of encouragement as they are given out willy nilly - check out some of the file links to Image:Barnstar-camera.png and I think you'll agree. And I value and treasure my own photographic barnstars, and sincerely thank those who have awarded them to me, but to be honest if someone gave me an award such as this where you really had to earn it I would treasure it far more. --Fir0002 23:12, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
          • Well, I'm encouraged by your report from Commons. It probably boils down to differences in our desired aesthetic for the wiki. For example, I find the whole "Pay cash for nice illustrations project" (can't remember what it's called but you know what I'm referring to) very distasteful. de Bivort 23:39, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
    • Re: Fcb - You've hit the nail on the head - see Wiki Doctorates. The only reason why it is hosted on my userspace is to keep it out of possible deletion issues.
    • Re:Durova - thank you, at least someone sees it for what it is
    • Re: pschemp - that battle is over, stop fighting it! I've already said I'd quit using the templates! I announced the Guild here simply because I thought it may interest some users!
    • Last of all Everyone take a deep breath and please Assume Good Faith!! --Fir0002 22:07, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Ok trying to be constructive here. I'm guessing that a lot of people's gut reaction to someone who makes an award and then awards it to themselves is negative and that's what caused the reaction you got Fir. It just isn't something people normally do, and it comes off as a bit self-serving. Good intentions aside, that probably wasn't the wisest thing to do as in general Wikipedia culture frowns upon individual glorification.pschemp | talk 01:00, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
I see what you're saying, but that is twisting the facts a bit as I gave the award to three of the most deserving members of the community before I gave it to myself. The motivation behind giving it to me was quite simple and I'll explain to make it completely transparent. I wanted to have everything ready for when I started giving out awards - have the whole thing ironed out. To do that I needed to use someone as a template. I could have used someone else (like Diliff) but a) I didn't want to introduce it before it was ready, b) I wanted to get the thing up and running relatively quickly and I knew most of the three obvious choices were only semi-active and so I wasn't sure when or if they'd respond to such a request, and c) I'd rather the awardee be given the chance to make his/her own profile etc. So I used myself. Modesty can be taken too far to the point that it is ostentatious, and looking it analytically I knew that I would quite easily qualify for the award. So I felt the best option was to use my own details as the template for others. So having got it all worked out I awarded Diliff, Mdf and Aka the award and then put it on my own userpage. And yes I do think that I would have earned the award and felt justified in having it on my userpage, but the primary reason was that it would look rather odd having my details in the guild and not having the award. In addition again part of my motivation was to act as a template - I am hoping that awardees will not feel the urge to reduce the award to standard 128px barnstar size but at around 800px. Hopefully that is clear. And think about it - if this was about self glorification why would I have put anything here?
Anyway I think I'll leave it at that. --Fir0002 01:49, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
Er, to announce the self glorification in a roundabout way would be the prefect reason to put it here...and I bet that's what a few people thought. Technical details aside, it doesn't matter that you gave it to others first, giving it to yourself looks like showing off, regardless of the reasons. That's what bothers people, I have no doubt. I don't think anyone thinks you have a false modesty issue that needed to be corrected either. I think you just need to keep in mind that if you go against what is taboo in general culture, negative and forceful reactions are likely to occur. Doesn't mean they are wrong or right, but its going to happen. pschemp | talk 02:55, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Aw Gawd, not more autofellatio and red tape! Samsara (talk  contribs) 03:10, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

May I archive this thread? It's getting a bit too raw. DurovaCharge! 03:12, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

Please do, it isn't productive. pschemp | talk 03:19, 1 February 2008 (UTC)

Voting procedures

I've noticed a worrying trend of some voters using the little pictures to show their support or opposition. While I'm sure they think it looks nice, I believe it unfairly highlights their votes and also clutters up the page when editing. All opinions are equal here, and should be given equal weight, no one person's should be made more visible by adding such elements. It also makes the pages look messy, and less professional when just one user does this. In keeping with WP idea that all editors are equal, either everyone should use them or no one should. This was a similar issue at RFA and it was decided there that users should not use the images. I think it is a good precedent to keep things standardized. pschemp | talk 17:37, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

I would guess that the practice originated at commons, where not all voters may be using the same language. That rationale doesn't apply here. Spikebrennan (talk) 18:02, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
Indeed it did. Also, there it is produced with a small template, not a direct link to the image. There's a reason WP has no such template. pschemp | talk 18:30, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
It did originate from the commons but there is sound thinking in introducing it here. Check out the FPC's of other languages - they all use them. And that makes it really useful when someone (like me a few weeks ago) from FPC wants to check out how things are run and the quality of FPC's in another language - it allows them to see how the voting process is going at a glance thanks to the icons. Furthermore you couldn't just standardize voting styles - you'd need to make everyone use the same signature style as well (as sometimes they can be extremely elaborate) or it looks just as messy and "unprofessional". And what you end up with is suppressing individual style and making the whole thing a lot less friendly. I think your claim that it makes a user's vote more important is quite silly as it's hardly going to fool/impress MER-C is it? --Fir0002 21:38, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
I think we can count on the closers to be smart enough not to give undue weight to votes with images. howcheng {chat} 21:40, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
I'd prefer it if everybody used the Commons style template. It looks better. If I was more patient I would try to figure out why Template:support is protected. Cacophony (talk) 21:42, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
Wikipedia:Templates for deletion/Log/Deleted/June 2005#Template:Support and Template:Object and Template:Oppose, Wikipedia:Templates for deletion/Log/Deleted/November 2005#Template:Vote and all derivatives, Wikipedia:Templates_for_deletion/Log/2007 May 3#Voting templates yet again, Wikipedia:Deletion review/Log/2007 May 4#Template:!comment, and Wikipedia:Templates for deletion/Log/2007 June 5#AfD voting templates, Wikipedia:Templates_for_deletion/Log/2007_October_30#Template:Oppose_Symbol_and_Template:Support_Symbol. Came up over and over and over and over and over again. It's against community consensus. Fir just managed to numb us on this one. --Dschwen 00:03, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
As can be seen from those results , the WP community is firmly against using these symbols and that is why the template is protected. In addition to unnecessary server strain caused by loading the images over and over, it indicates that these are votes, which they in principle are not. I haven't seen any good argument to use them, only things like "I can vote however I want", and "It looks nice." Since this is the English wikipedia, they simply aren't needed. Additionally they do make certain people's votes stand out, and that can affect those who come after (not just the closers), even if they don't realize it. A new person looking at the page for instance might wonder why one person's votes are highlighted. Since community consensus is against these being used, I'd ask Fir respectfully to remove them, or change the consensus before using them. pschemp | talk 01:03, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
Personally I see little need for the icons, but don't care that much - what is annoying about them is that they muck up the bullets if an indented bullet point follows immediately below them. I actually get far more annoyed with outlandish, big-fonted, multicoloured signatures that dominate the page; to anyone that uses them I say "get over yourself". Re making votes stand out, of course it wouldn't affect the closers, but I can see pschemp's point about potentially making a 'vote' stand out to later voters, especially novices. --jjron (talk) 08:40, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
In the same vein, I'd also be happy to see signatures being standardized. Images in sigs are discouraged (if not actually forbidden) but some people have resorted to using fonts, coloring and backgrounds that make their signature stand out. If you want to stand out, do it by your actions, not with an image or a flashy sig... --Janke | Talk 09:58, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
Re:Dschwen - Could you clarify what "numb us on this one" is meant to mean? I don't think I've heard that one before... --Fir0002 23:08, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
Re:pschemp - Could you specify why it is that adding a graphic before the standard bolded word of "support" transforms it into an evil "vote"? Server strain? Give me a break - it's obviously minuscule or commons FPC (with it's 14 days worth of nominations) would be reformed to using simple shading or something. Ditto the FPC's in other languages. In fact I pretty sure somewhere along the line I was told that when you subst the templates (like I do) it adds no server strain whatsoever. I haven't heard any good arguments why not to use them so personally I don't see a reason to change the status quo - particularly when customized sigs are broadly accepted within the community. However I'd probably agree that a new comer would wonder why one or two votes are different from others, but I disagree that they'd be affected by it - just as they'd be unaffected by a customized sig. And you've not addressed one of the distinct positive aspects of it I mentioned earlier - the ability for people from other languages to be able to access what we are doing here and benefit from it. --Fir0002 23:08, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
Re:jjron - I'm not sure what you mean by the indenting of the bullets? But it sounds like something which could be solved with ease were I to include a * before the icon. --Fir0002 23:08, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
I've done a demonstration at the bottom of this section, but I think you've got what I meant. --jjron (talk) 09:10, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Repetition, reverting, ignoring consensus on that topic. It's not such a big deal anyways, just a minor annoyance, and I personally just came to accept it as a Fir-peculiarity. --Dschwen 03:59, 30 January 2008 (UTC)
Fir, the good argument against using them is that the community has decided we won't. The important fact here is that the English wikipedia has on numerous occasions and by massive consensus decided that the icons should not be used. Regardless of your personal opinion, consensus is what we go by and you are ignoring it. So as I said before, please remove them or change the consensus. pschemp | talk 19:42, 30 January 2008 (UTC)
I think a significant flaw with the "community consensus" is that the people involved in the deletion are largely unaffected by the icons as they are not involved in FPC or the like. So it really is not representative of what the community consensus is here where I am using them. I think if you could show me that there is a definite community consenus in the WP:FPC community (not just the four or five people in this discussion) then I would conform to the standard voting technique in difference to the community's objection to my style. --Fir0002 22:20, 30 January 2008 (UTC)
The fact that you are the only one using them is one. Second, most of the people at FPC who have been around for a long time know about the consensus in other places not to use them. Just because no one was silly enough to use them on FPC doesn't mean you can ignore WP consensus. FPC is not its own project. There is an experiment that would give you your answer however. Recreate the templates, designate them for use on FPC only and see how long they last. I dare you. :) pschemp | talk 04:26, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
[deindent] - I'm mildly opposed to the icons - 1) they are distracting, 2) break up the vertical flow of the summary words, 3) translating the words "oppose" and "support" is a pretty easy way for a non english speaker to figure out what's going on, 4) the arguments given at RfA seem to hold here as well. de Bivort 22:32, 30 January 2008 (UTC)
re:pschemp - you've got it back to front! :) See it was me who originally migrated those template from commons here to FPC, meaning they were first used (and intended for) FPC discussions. So it wasn't a matter of me finding them somewhere else on WP and using them here and not seeing the deletion requests, I was involved with all of that and was fully aware of them so the recreation test isn't really groundbreaking. Well I would disagree - although FPC is obviously a part of WP you could easily describe it as a seperate community and project from say FAC, each project has it's own sub community if you like. But look if it's going to get people so jumpy (I can't belive what Alvesgaspar wrote just below this!) I'll sacrifice my beloved voting templates and use the standard style from now on --Fir0002 11:21, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
re:de Bivort - be fair some of those reasons are pretty weak! "break up the vertical flow"! :) --Fir0002 11:21, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I really don't care if the Commons' support and oppose icons are used or not. What really puzzles (and amuses) me is that the opinion of a single user is prevailing over the consensus of a whole community. A user who justifies his position by suggesting that there are two kinds of users: those whose opinion counts (WP:FPC regulars who support him, 1st class) and all the others. -- Alvesgaspar (talk) 08:56, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Exactly how is one person's vote prevailing over the consensus in the example that you cited? I read the votes and nowhere do I get the sense that anyone alluded to two classes of users. Other than the phrase "gonna buck the trend here", Fir's comment is about the technical aspects of the candidate. The voting hasn't ended, so I don't see how you can say it's anything other than one opposition vote. Do you think that MER-C is giving more weight to some voters? Cacophony (talk) 09:21, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
  • Sorry but I'm not (of course!) referring to the reviewing process of that particular nomination but to the use of the "support" and "oppose" icons. The allusion to two classes of users is above: I think a significant flaw with the "community consensus" is that the people involved in the deletion are largely unaffected by the icons as they are not involved in FPC or the like. So it really is not representative of what the community consensus is here where I am using them. I think if you could show me that there is a definite community consenus in the WP:FPC community (not just the four or five people in this discussion) then I would conform to the standard voting technique in difference to the community's objection to my style (end of citation) -- Alvesgaspar (talk) 10:09, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

Fir, so you made the templates for FPC, the community deleted them and you are still insisting that the community consensus doesn't apply to FPC? The gap in logic there is amazing. As Alvesgaspar rightly points out, it isn't only the people who contribute to FPC whose opinion matters. pschemp | talk 20:31, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

It should be noted although on the template deletions the option was left open to people to use the images to create their own internal templates on their userpages which is what many people (myself included do) so as not to as not to clutter the template space. In response to the accusation that it creates two tiers of users my response to that is that although it will probably never be made part of the fpc guideliens for cruft and professionalism reasons they're are of course welcome to use the icons, and I would as I'm sure other people would be willing to show them how to create their own template in their name space and properly use (including subst) them. Cat-five - talk 02:14, 4 February 2008 (UTC)

Incidentally, I plan on using these symbols as normal unless a policy (either global (unlikely), or local to FPC) is enacted against them, and considering that they've been in use for years I honestly doubt either is going to happen just because this has been brought up for the 10th time on Talk:FPC. Cat-five - talk 02:19, 4 February 2008 (UTC)
Also the idea of a slippery slope comes to mind, what's next are we going to say that you can't have a custom sig on FPC pages or (what I'll do if images aren't allowed) we aren't allowed to color our text red or green depending on whether it's a support or oppose? Cat-five - talk 02:22, 4 February 2008 (UTC)
Your WP:POINT demonstration is not appreciated. Please stop. It wasn't just the templates, but the issue of the images appearing. Community consensus is very clear here, the images should not be used. FPC is not separate from the rest of wikipedia, there has been significant objection expressed in the topic above from the FPC community which you have now ignored and the symbols have NOT been used for years. pschemp | talk 23:30, 4 February 2008 (UTC)
It is not a WP:POINT violation for me to continue using them since I'm not doing it to prove a point, I am continuing to contribute (vote if you will) the same way I have done in the same way I have done on pretty much every FPC I have voted on, also please show me where it said that internal templates cannot be used, if I remember correctly the issue was global templates, I also do not believe FPC was specifically mentioned however I agree with you that FPC is part of the community and if there's a global ban on them then it includes FPC although discourged != banned, and I'm not trying to rule-lawyer my way out of it that's just the facts. Cat-five - talk 00:10, 5 February 2008 (UTC)
I have reverted at least the last 3 votes I did since this is still not resolved, you still have not showm me that there is a consensus anywhere either on the template deletion page or here that icons are disallowed albeit they are discourged, consensus is however clear on editing people's comments without policy to back it up, especially in cases when your a party to the dispute since that could be seen as a conflict of interest at best, as I said, yes it is discourged, however unless you see this thread as being consensus there is no FPC specific consensus and the broad consensus on the template deletion debates did not cover this situation as it deals with the images not the templates which was what the issue on the template deletion debates was about. Cat-five - talk 00:18, 5 February 2008 (UTC)
Incidentally, unless things have changed radically since I was really active on WP the onus is still on you to prove that I'm violating either policy per assume good faith as well as the reversion policy and again I'm not trying to wiki-lawyer or be a jerk, I'm trying to be as polite, civil, and professional as possible and if you can show me I'm wrong please do and I'll stop using images in my votes however until then I'm not going to be a pushover just because you don't see eye to eye with me on images being on votes. Cat-five - talk 00:23, 5 February 2008 (UTC)
To avoid escalating and as a sign of good faith I won't use the images for the time being until this is resolved, also it will save me cleanup work if I am wrong and have to cleanup the images on any open FPC's I vote on. Cat-five - talk 00:28, 5 February 2008 (UTC)
de-indending-- I apologize, it appears I was mistaken, as per this TFD and this MFD, I will remove all images I have on open FPC's and I'll put my vote subpages up for speedy. Cat-five - talk 00:36, 5 February 2008 (UTC)

Demonstration of effect on bullets:

  • Bullet used as bullet.
    • Indented reply.

Symbol oppose vote.svg Symbol used as bullet.

    • Indented reply.

This is what I meant by the effect on indented bullets; see how it causes two (or more) bullets on the indent. And it is fixed if you bullet before the icon, as done here. --jjron (talk) 09:10, 31 January 2008 (UTC)

OK thanks for pointing it out - you could actually get around that (I'm pretty sure) by using :* rather than ** for the indented reply --Fir0002 11:21, 31 January 2008 (UTC)
Correct, the :* does work, but a lot of users don't seem to know about that as an alternative method of indenting. Also the :* format give a slightly larger indent than the ** format, so the flow is not as nice as alignments down the page aren't precise. Incidentally, while on this, if someone has indented using :* and the next person uses *** it gives three bullets to the indent, if you've ever wondered why sometimes the bullets 'muck up'. I've done a demo of all this below. (I only know all this because I'm a pedant; I'm sure most people couldn't care less :-). ) --jjron (talk) 00:30, 1 February 2008 (UTC)
  • Single asterisk
    • Two asterisk indent
  • Colon and asterisk indent (note indent is larger than two asterisks)
      • Asterisk indent following an indent done with a colon (note all asterisks become bullets)