Wikipedia talk:In the news

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Ongoing regular update criteria[edit]

The consensus of the last ongoing removal nom is that an article can stay in ongoing even if it's not "regularly updated with new, pertinent information" as stipulated by the ongoing criteria. This is fine, but we should update the criteria to match consensus. I suggest replacing that statement with

In order to be posted to ongoing, the subject of the target article, or any related article linked from the target article needs to be reported on by reliable sources.

This much more closely aligns with the rationale used to keep the Hong Kong protests in the box. --LaserLegs (talk) 11:53, 17 June 2020 (UTC)

  • Support as nominator --LaserLegs (talk) 11:53, 17 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Support matches much better with what is meant by "ongoing". Banedon (talk) 12:23, 17 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment The ongoing criteria still say: "The purpose of the ongoing section is to maintain a link to a continuously updated Wikipedia article...", with an italic emphasis on " continuously updated". I guess an WP:IAR case was argued and made for the Hong Kong protests only. Brandmeistertalk 15:57, 17 June 2020 (UTC)

It’s not clear to me what your proposed statement is trying to say. I think it may be missing a couple words. Bzweebl (talkcontribs) 17:59, 17 June 2020 (UTC)

  • Oppose I get what the nominator is suggesting, but I feel this opens a can of worms. This means that any article can serve as the basis for putting any other article into Ongoing, so long as there's somehow a link to the former in the latter. I feel that this is the opposite of clarity, and invites us to post static, placeholder/portal articles into Ongoing and then let them sit there forever because some article linked therein is updated at any given time. The specific instance is idiosyncratic, and I don't think trying to makes rules around it is useful. (talk) 10:25, 18 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment A better change in wording, perhaps, replacing any article linked from the target article with something that reflects any article/s in the appropriate navbox for which the target article is the main/head article. This more accurately reflects the Hong Kong protests posting, and makes the expansion of rules more appropriately limited. But yes, I agree with the sentiment that if we're going to post something where there was a general expectation for it to be posted and kept in ongoing, we need to back it up with something like this update. Kingsif (talk) 03:17, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment @Bzweebl: @ @Kingsif: I made a tweak to the wording so that it's any "related article linked". If it's related "enough" will be open to interpretation, but ITN is all about consensus building. --LaserLegs (talk) 14:27, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Support I've added to it a part about updates that I thing is what Bzweebl thought was missing. Support with the 'related' addition. Kingsif (talk) 04:05, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
    • Oppose respectfully, the consensus from the last OG removal was that article staleness doesn't matter. Capturing that is important. As written, it's basically the same thing. --LaserLegs (talk) 10:38, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
      • Well, there was definitely something missing from the proposed text, it wasn't a complete sentence. What had you been intending? Kingsif (talk) 11:01, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
        • "sub-articles" are ok, article updates don't matter so long as it's still "in the news" --LaserLegs (talk) 11:06, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
          • Looks good now, thanks --LaserLegs (talk) 12:00, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment seems we've settled on the wording. Pinging those who opposed the removal of the HK protests for additional feedback. @Bloom6132: @Masem: @The Rambling Man: @Lugnuts: @Sca: @Indefensible: @RedBulbBlueBlood9911: any thoughts on the current proposal? --LaserLegs (talk) 12:18, 21 June 2020 (UTC)
    • User:LaserLegs, thanks for the ping. What would the change in application be, for example to the current Hong Kong entry? It seems like it would still be up for interpretation and could mean that it simply needs to have reliable sourcing at the time of posting but staleness may still be an issue as you wrote above, so not sure I fully understand the implications. - Indefensible (talk) 04:04, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
    • No objection to the current proposal - RedBulbBlueBlood9911Talk 06:59, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Support. ITN shouldn't be dictated by whether editors put efforts into it but by their real-life significance instead. OceanHok (talk) 14:32, 30 June 2020 (UTC)

But, what is the Thatcher-Mandela standard for blurbing deaths?[edit]

Based on the wild debate of 1. what this means and 2. if it is actually seen as useful coming from the discussion at the Vera Lynn nom, I feel it would be appropriate for the community to answer those questions and, if appropriate, set a firmer guideline on when blurbing RDs is appropriate. From my understanding, the Thatcher-Mandela standard is shorthand for ... the person had a major impact in, and/or was at the top of, their field; is globally recognized for at least some of their contributions; and whose death is met with widespread coverage beyond a mere tagline that it happened. This should cover anyone in any field, not just world leaders (so no need for an alternate Prince-Bowie standard). But I'd like to hear how other users see it, and if any of these such definitions need expansion or clarification, as well as discussion on if people involved at ITN would like it to be an essay or something. Kingsif (talk) 02:40, 19 June 2020 (UTC)

See also User:LaserLegs/NOTMANDELA. Kingsif (talk) 03:29, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Comment There is nothing to fix here. Some deceased people get a blurb when there is consensus to do so. Some contributors use "Thatcher/Mandela" as a kind of short hand, but if they spelled out their position every time it would be the same position. Scroll through any death blurb nom and we find references to Carrie Fisher, Prince, David Bowie, the usual gripes from the usual suspects. Luckily, this doesn't happen that often and while I don't doubt the desire of the contributors here to improving the project, there really isn't anything to be done. --LaserLegs (talk) 14:25, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Respectfully, reading through the Lynn discussion throws up different views on what the 'standard' is, and just as many arguments against using it at all. Its existence/bringing it up seemed to be doing more harm than good. If nothing else, we can get a general consensus on what many ITN users think it means/what it should mean when they use it. Kingsif (talk) 14:26, 20 June 2020 (UTC)


The bar should be very exclusive and clear. I think it should be restricted to heads of state/government, whichever is more appropriate per the individual's country. Potentially with some population and/or other threshold, particularly for non-incumbents--the threshold could or should be higher than for incumbents. - Indefensible (talk) 03:05, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Interesting that you say head of state or government - to take the UK as an example, would you blurb a PM dying in office or the Queen dying? In theory, the PM is the more appropriate leader. But I don't think anyone would deny that the Queen's death should be the only guaranteed blurb ever. (Would some explanation for the Commonwealth be needed, say) Kingsif (talk) 03:09, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Officeholding is not enough, there has to be some additional criteria including population as I alluded to. It's debatable in the UK examples, personally could go either way or potentially support both being blurbed. However, for a former PM or another royal, much less likely. Another example would be Pope Francis versus Pope Benedict XVI, the latter may be much less likely to meet the threshold for a blurb. - Indefensible (talk) 03:17, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Some more questions, then: would a population restriction unfairly exclude some countries that already get less coverage, but also some countries with a significant world leader (e.g. New Zealand, which has one of the smallest populations in the world)? And for the Popes - would all past Popes be debated as the leaders of the Vatican (which certainly wouldn't meet population criteria), as religious leaders, or as generally influential figures in world history (with Benedict probably ranked above Francis in this area at the moment)? Kingsif (talk) 03:27, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
For the Pope, one could make an argument that they lead the Roman Catholic Church and not just the Vatican, and therefore would meet the population threshold. Some population or other qualifier is needed though to prevent heads of micronations from being approved for blurbs. However, the head of Taiwan would be a point of contention. The threshold may then be set significantly higher (say at 50 million initially), but certainly this may be overly crude and need refinement. It is true that this may exclude nominees and introduce systemic bias, for example the current Burundian entry would not meet the threshold. However, it goes back to the other extreme of micronations, so setting some minimum level of threshold as correlating to notability is still appropriate I think. - Indefensible (talk) 03:38, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Obviously besides the Queen, are there any other religious leaders of the same scale that would warrant a blurb? A bodhisatra or someone maybe? Kingsif (talk) 05:31, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Only the top leaders of major religious organizations which have legal standing and meet the same (or higher) notability and/or population threshold as political officeholders should be considered in my opinion. But only mentioned it above as an example without thinking it through, and maybe they should actually be excluded so that only political heads qualify. The largest religious organizations are probably the closest in kind to public governments in terms of notability from social reach and encyclopedic consequence though, which would be in their favor. - Indefensible (talk) 04:47, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
Besides royals that are heads of states, would any other royals qualify for a blurb? Say Charles dies before the Queen, or Philip dies - what about Queen Letizia, or Felipe's sisters? Kingsif (talk) 06:29, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Monarchs such as the Emperor of Japan or King of Saudi Arabia may qualify, but no other royals such as a consort or family member. Did not mean to imply that monarchs would necessarily qualify however, if they are a figurehead and not the actual governing head of their polity then perhaps they should not meet the threshold for a blurb posting. - Indefensible (talk) 04:38, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
(We have 5 million! That's not tiny!) Anyway, I think a strict minimum for population would be greatly unfair, and should instead focus more on their impact. I think each RD-blurb case should be decided individually without invoking the phrase "Nelson/Mandela" which is anyway an annoying shorthand as these deaths were ages ago and are difficult to make comparisons to both due to how Wikipedia has changed and the fact that the comparison is so long ago it's not fresh on people's minds for an apt comparison.  Nixinova T  C   07:48, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Having a population threshold may be unfair, but having a subjective standard based on "impact" is probably more unfair, inconsistent, and confusing in my opinion. Not sure how it would be defined and applied. Judging by impact also means that some people are inherently more impactful and thus valuable on some subjective metric, whereas a straight population threshold measures a human life equivalent to a human life anywhere. - Indefensible (talk) 05:05, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
Former POTUSes and UKPMs should "automatically" get blurbs, as should the reigning Commonwealth monarch. I would argue that incumbent heads of state or government from other countries should generally get blurbs as well, but non-incumbents in those fields have a higher bar to clear. – John M Wolfson (talkcontribs) 16:31, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
The assumption that a former incumbent of any sort should have automatic inclusion must be contested in my opinion, it creates the opportunity for an unclear additional standard and generally has little encyclopedic consequence. For example, the death of George H. W. Bush was noteworthy but led to no notable, direct public outcome that I know of other than his state funeral, and so was not necessarily as noteworthy as any other events which must qualify and be in the ITN box. There is a fundamental difference between the death of an incumbent and a predecessor; the former creates a public impact that has further encyclopedic value while the latter of a private citizen generally does not, which is a justifiable standard in my opinion. - Indefensible (talk) 04:30, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
I think we would need some sort of scaling criteria here, based on the level of power a nation has. For example every US President is blurb-worthy, but with Parliamentary nations you have some Prime Ministers who rule for only a few months (e.g. Stanley Baldwin, Kim Campbell), and I don't think those are blurb-worthy barring some other reason for their significance. For permanent security council members, maybe leaders who led for a reasonable length of time, perhaps five years; for mid-tier powers (G7 or G20), maybe we only post someone who is renowned as one of the top five or so leaders in their nation's history, or developed some sort of international significance; for lesser powers, maybe we only post someone who led the country for 20+ years and was internationally significant in some way (e.g. acquiring nuclear weapons for a country).
I don't think we should limit it to national leaders either, but I don't want to see the ITN box flooded with death blurbs. I think a reasonable bar to set would be "cultural figure of at the highest level of international fame" (e.g. Michael Jackson or Michael Jordan) or "the best ever in an internationally significant field or genre" (e.g. Wayne Gretzky). NorthernFalcon (talk) 17:52, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Cultural figures as you mentioned should be excluded in my opinion because the subject is a private citizen whose death is usually noteworthy only as an ending point to the story of their life without further public or encyclopedic consequence. The same is generally not true for a public officeholder who is the head of a major government, as it leads to public and consequential change such as a new governing administration. This is a fundamental and justifying difference which can be used to define the threshold. - Indefensible (talk) 04:56, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
How does a former leader dying "[lead] to public and consequential change such as a new governing administration"? If a current leader dies, that's already WP:ITN/R. -- King of ♥ 15:59, 30 June 2020 (UTC)

Invoking past precedents[edit]

  • For reference, the "Thatcher-Mandela" standard was added to WP:ITNRD last month[1] and has never actually received consensus. I personally believe that it doesn't offer any additional clarity as to which deaths deserve a blurb beyond what was already written at ITNRD, and therefore invoking it is usually not constructive to discussion. Bzweebl (talkcontribs) 03:06, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Do you think actual arguments that are in line with such a standard (e.g. someone saying 'no blurb because they were not X', or vice versa) are more or less useful than just saying 'not Mandela'? Kingsif (talk) 03:09, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Though I am guilty of making such an argument yesterday, upon reflection I think they are equally not useful. Precedents established over time can be meaningful if there are solid justifications for them that remain relevant, but past mistakes should not be used to justify making new ones. Bzweebl (talkcontribs) 03:15, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
Any examples of such precedents, in various fields. Would a certain number of Oscar/BAFTA wins or records sold be a good standard? Kingsif (talk) 03:27, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
No, arbitrary numerical cutoffs are not useful. I am referring to precedents like blurbing sitting heads of state, or celebrities whose death receives its own Wikipedia page. Bzweebl (talkcontribs) 03:47, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Fixed I removed the Thatcher/Mandela comparison from Wikipedia:In_the_news/Recent_deaths since it was added without discussion, and if this becomes the discussion I oppose codifying that "standard". --LaserLegs (talk) 14:21, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • For the record, here's the full text of it prior to LaserLegs's removal:
Major figures ("Thatcher/Mandela"): The death of major figures, including transformative world leaders in their field, may merit a blurb. These cases are rare, and are usually posted on a sui generis basis through a discussion at WP:ITNC that determines there is consensus that the death merits a blurb. Comparisons to deaths of prior persons (we posted John Doe, so we should also post Jane Smith, or conversely we didn't post Bill Jones, so we cannot post Susie Johnson) are rarely considered sufficient to post in absence of consensus. A standard often referred to as the "Thatcher-Mandela standard" (after the respective Margaret Thatcher and Nelson Mandela, whose deaths were posted as blurbs) is used by many users, although not without controversy. Despite the name of the two figures, these aren't limited to politics, and have included such figures as Prince and David Bowie.
John M Wolfson (talkcontribs) 16:22, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I'm wary of giving this "official status" without a discussion, and I agree with the revert. For one thing, I don't think it just covers the "major figures" criterion; I think it's also applicable to #2, the person's death itself being newsworthy.-- P-K3 (talk) 16:46, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
    • The issue about newsworthiness of a death is good, but that's why popularity is also a concern; a very popular person, but one who wasn't close to top of their field, may end up with a "newsworthy" death, simply because everyone talks about remembrance of them. This is a media bias that also slips to editor bias that we should try to watch for and avoid. --Masem (t) 17:29, 19 June 2020 (UTC)

Popularity metric[edit]

  • I would argue what we don't want are things like what happened with Carrie Fisher who was nowhere near top of the field but got pushed there because Star Wars and her mother Debbie Reynolds dying just the week before, who again, wasn't a top of the field personality. There were a few other cases like this where popularity overrode common sense. (There was a case of a young actor that died in a car accident that we posted that we've come to realize was a bad post). We have tried to use the Thatcher/Mandala as representative cases of "top of field" and where there was clearly a huge news reaction to the death. I would also argue we did right for people like Stephen Hawking, Stan Lee, David Bowie, Prince, Robin Williams, Christopher Lee, etc. What's important is to get past just "iconic", "popular", "household name" and other terms and focus on merit to describe topic of field, which is much more objective than "iconic" and other terms. We can then disagree how many awards someone has won to be there, but that's a better argument than trying to assess popularity. --Masem (t) 05:48, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Thank, Masem. Handling news coverage of the death, then, should we be more careful to weed out where there's not much substance but lots of coverage because of popularity? Kingsif (talk) 06:08, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • That's part of my concern. We want to avoid "fan reactions" and we need some type of clear "top of the field" aspect that is beyond popularity that should be a starting point to consider a blurb. Mere popularity is not sufficient. --Masem (t) 14:46, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
The sectioning here is a bit confusing - feel free to move this to a different heading if desired. The threshold for a blurb is subjective; I'm reluctant to have any prescriptive rules about where the bar is, and doubt we would reach consensus on specific examples. I consider reaction to the death (which could potentially merit a blurb on its own) to be a separate issue to whether the death itself deserves a blurb. To me, the Thatcher/Mandela standard is shorthand for 'someone who was as influential on the world as Margaret Thatcher or Nelson Mandela'. It's unfortunate that both of those were politicians, as other professions can qualify, and cultural influence also counts. I feel we've been too permissive with entertainers whose work was popular but not particularly influential (Carrie Fisher being a good example - Star Wars was influential, but her acting career was not). Long-term encyclopaedic value is what matters to me, not short-term popularity i.e. the people school children will be learning about decades from now, not tabloid celebrities. I recognise that opinions differ and my view of where the bar should be is no more valid than anyone else who comments on ITN/C. Modest Genius talk 12:49, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Limiting blurbs to the most encyclopedic bios could be achieved by restricting blurb discussions for deaths to only those which are vital articles (Mandela is level 3; Thatcher, Bowie, and Prince are level 4; Fisher and Reynolds are level 5) – not guaranteeing a blurb for these articles, but allowing blurb discussion. Some issues with this could be editors sneakily making their favorite performer/whoever a vital article to try and get a blurb, but also the opposite, where someone who really should be a vital article has been overlooked. Any opinions on this? Kingsif (talk) 14:45, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I think we should continue to let editors decide who does and doesn't qualify for a blurb on a case-by-case basis, as has been the tradition. Just because you disagree with the inclusion of Fisher doesn't mean we have to craft some 1,000-word policy outlining who should and shouldn't get a blurb. (And at least get your facts straight, Debbie Reynolds died after going into shock following her daughter's death.) Calidum 14:35, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
    • Regardless of who passed away first, neither Reynolds nor Fisher were top-tier actresses on par with someone with a career like Christopher Lee. Fisher got pushed because "She's Princess Leia!" which... no, that shouldn't have been the reason. That's the type of reasoning we need to keep out of ITNC blurb considerations. Merit has to be there first and foremost over popularity. --Masem (t) 14:46, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
      • I agree that Fisher should not have received a blurb, but I think we're already making progress in that field given that Terry Jones recently didn't get a blurb, either. – John M Wolfson (talkcontribs) 16:25, 19 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I endorse Calidum's comments. Instead of designing lengthy policies to keep out content some find undesirable, we should go by consensus. 331dot (talk) 16:34, 19 June 2020 (UTC)

No universal standard - discuss merits as with any blurb[edit]

  • A new section for discussion based on 331dot's comments. Some questions on completely ditching Thatcher/Mandela, then: would this re-open all deaths for blurb discussion? And should WP:SNOW still be good for closing those blurb discussions, if all opinions are to be heard out? Kingsif (talk) 14:23, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
    • I wouldn't completely oppose such a move, but I'd still prefer "autoblurbing" officeholders and discussing the others. – John M Wolfson (talkcontribs) 14:28, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
    • "Thatcher/Mandela" should be completely discontinued as a standard for posting blurbs. It's nonsensical. No one agrees on what the standard actually means. I saw someone above claim that only holders of high office like UK PMs and POTUSes should get blurbs. That is absolutely ridiculous and contrary to how ITN has always operated.--WaltCip-(BLM!Resist The Orange One) 15:10, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I agree with this. I'd have some guidelines though - if none of the following are true then a blub is very unlikely to be merited; if several are true then a blurb is worth discussing:
    • The person's article has been expanded with about 10 or more sentences of sourced encyclopaedia prose about their death, excluding quotes.
    • They were the incumbent head of state in a country where the head of state has day-to-day executive power.
    • They were the incumbent head of government in a country where the head of government has day-to-day executive power.
    • They were the elected head of state or government of a country for more than about 10 years.
    • They were the unelected head of state or government of a country for more than about 20 years.
    • They are the most import or most prominent figure in a religious movement with more than about a million adherents in each of multiple countries.
    • Around 10 or more articles have been updated with multiple sentences of sourced encyclopaedic prose (excluding quotes) beyond basic details of their death.
    • Their death has, or is expected to have, a significant impact for (a) their country, (b) multiple other countries, or (c) one or more major religious movements/organisations. "Significant impact" is determined by coverage about these impacts in reliable sources outside the country or group concerned, and must be greater than those the death of a moderately prominent person in that country/organisation would cause.
    • Their death has, or will have, a significant impact on a major international event that is currently ongoing to due to commence within about 1 week.
    Note that all of these are guidelines, not rules and are not intended as a checklist or similar and even meeting all of them is no guarantee of a blurb and someone meeting none of them may still get one - the onus is just on those who do/don't want a blurb to explain why the guidelines are not relevant to the given person's death. Thryduulf (talk) 13:42, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I would tend to agree with this. Discussing precedent just causes arguments. Invoke guidelines and you are told they are not policy. How about "recent deaths can be blurbed if the consensus at ITNC decides so." GreatCaesarsGhost 23:48, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I have always regarded the Thatcher/Mandela "rule" to be an unreasonably high bar. That said, I don't want to open the floodgates for endless discussion over nominations that based on past precedent, will gain consensus for posting the day after Donald Trump carries California in a general election. I am open to some reasonable expansion of criteria. Of course all nominations come down to consensus among those showing up for the discussion. (Side note re the above list of criteria... the death of an incumbent head of state is pretty much ITNR. An incumbent head of government's (Prime Minister's) death would almost certainly be posted as well) -Ad Orientem (talk) 00:07, 27 June 2020 (UTC)
  • This is the status quo, which is fine. "Thatcher/Mandela" is not and never was a standard but if it triggers you up that much I'll just copy/paste the same boiler plate for every death blurb nom: "Not a household name in many countries, no media circus, not the subject of a major motion picture or similar cultural impact -- RD is fine for this". Every time if the phrase "Thatcher / Mandela" results in a weeks long discussion and walls of text. Will that solve the problem? --LaserLegs (talk) 21:07, 27 June 2020 (UTC)
  • Four thousand words later and we're no closer to an agreed-upon definition of Thatcher-Mandela. Is it about fame, impact, and/or death coverage? If it's about impact, are we going by absolute impact or do we still adhere to the "top of their field" policy at ITNRD? Also, is it a strict standard (e.g., only "Death of X" articles get death-blurbs, as Thatcher and Mandela did) or just a suggestion? I've heard differing answers to all of these. If you have to explain what you mean by a name every time, why not just ditch the name? (1/2)
I also agree with WaltCip and Ad Orientem above that most interpretations of the Thatcher/Mandela standard I've come across are unreasonably restrictive. How many deaths can we expect to be on that level every year? Less than one, probably. In my opinion, around 5 death-blurbs per year is a good rule of thumb; i.e., is this person's death the most significant death in the past two months. (2/2) Davey2116 (talk) 15:44, 30 June 2020 (UTC)


Thatcher and Mandela may have each respectively met the threshold bearing their name, but perhaps the threshold in general is the wrong approach. The most egalitarian and fair policy would simply be that no natural deaths are posted as a blurb. If a sitting president or celebrity who meets the standard in their respective field dies, they are listed in RD with everyone else who is noteworthy enough to have a Wikipedia article, which is the base criterion on notability described in the RD guidelines. Regardless of whether there is a blurb or a RD entry, the overall effect is still generally the same being that their name is listed in the ITN box. That way there is encyclopedic coverage without requiring editors to give up neutrality in subjectively judging who rises above the RD threshold to the blurb level. A death can still be posted as a blurb in ITN if it is particularly noteworthy due to its unnatural and/or encyclopedically consequential nature, e.g. if it results in a social movement or triggers a public election--in that case, the focus of the entry is the public event related to the death and not the death itself. - Indefensible (talk) 04:18, 22 June 2020 (UTC)

  • I would strongly support this. RD was created because death blurbs were pushing other items out of the box it was never about "lesser" deaths. Lets just put a stop to it. --LaserLegs (talk) 21:08, 27 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I disagree. There's not some death-blurbs 'crisis' that warrants scrapping them altogether. Some commenters want more death blurbs, some want fewer, and the status quo is a pretty good approximation of what it all averages out to. Of course there will be controversial edge cases, but I don't see how that implies that we should remove death-blurbs entirely. Davey2116 (talk) 15:44, 30 June 2020 (UTC)
  • I'll also have to disagree with this, sorry. Some people, even those warranting an article, are more important than others; I feel uncomfortable chucking every single death (even that of a former POTUS or Michael Jackson-level figure) in with a random football coach, for example. I also agree with Davey2116 that, assorted recent cases notwithstanding, there's no real crisis on this issue, and blurb-worthy deaths are known when seen. We could, however, chuck everything to RD and remove the provision that "everyone" gets an RD. This would punt discussions to RD, but has a benefit of not having the "worthy" deaths crowd out non-death blurbs. It would make RD empty quite often, however. Or we can just have no deaths at all in ITN, blurb or RD. – John M Wolfson (talkcontribs) 22:28, 1 July 2020 (UTC)

Another proposal[edit]

Responding to some users' concern that more death-blurbs push down other stories in the ITN box, someone in the Vera Lynn discussion suggested that instead of a fixed standard of notability, we post any death as a blurb if it receives significantly more coverage than the blurb that rolls off as a result. What do you think? Davey2116 (talk) 15:44, 30 June 2020 (UTC)

  • When a borderline death is competing with an old item of moderate to low importance, a comparative analysis like you say is useful perhaps, but the death of someone like Nelson Mandela that clearly should be posted ought to be able to push even the September 11 attacks out of ITN. -- King of ♥ 16:08, 30 June 2020 (UTC)
  • We've never varied the standard of any non-death blurb based on what was about to drop off the template; I don't see a good reason to do so just for deaths. It would be almost impossible to make that sort of comparison anyway. Modest Genius talk 16:54, 30 June 2020 (UTC)

Style note[edit]

AP Stylebook moves to capitalize 'Black' in racial/ethnic contexts. – Sca (talk) 13:53, 20 June 2020 (UTC)

This is arguably better suited for the MoS talkpage. I would wait until such a convention becomes more universal. – John M Wolfson (talkcontribs) 14:19, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
This user avoids MoS pages for mental health reasons.
Note that story sez they're considering capitalizing 'White' too. – Sca (talk) 15:28, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
What does AP style have to do with ITN? Modest Genius talk 11:40, 26 June 2020 (UTC)

Mars missions in July[edit]

I just wanted to notify those who were unaware that there will be three separate missions to Mars potentially launching within the space of ten days; Hope Mars Mission on 14 July, Mars 2020 on 20 July, and Tianwen-1 on 23 July. I bring this up because I was wondering how exactly we'll be presenting these in "In the news" when they launch. Will there be three separate pieces, or a single piece that gets updated as Mars 2020 and Tianwen-1 launch later on, or perhaps something different? It'd be best to work this out in advance, methinks. – PhilipTerryGraham (talk · articles · reviews) 18:35, 20 June 2020 (UTC)

I would prefer one blurb, like how the George Floyd protests one kept updating, because otherwise it will likely be a box full of Mars missions. Kingsif (talk) 19:58, 20 June 2020 (UTC)
Agreeing with the above, just one which includes all three missions should do. Although, I guess if one or more of the launches fail or is postponed, that'll be a whole different thing. boldblazer (talk) 06:35, 22 June 2020 (UTC)
WP:ITNR states 'Arrival of spacecraft (to lunar orbit and beyond) at their destinations'. So we should wait until they arrive at Mars, not post the launch (unless one of them explodes). Modest Genius talk 11:38, 26 June 2020 (UTC)

(Closed) Surely we can do better[edit]

Without a specific call to action, there isn't anything to discuss. The volunteer nature of posting admins has been explained to the OP. --LaserLegs (talk) 13:53, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

The RD nomination for John Kennedy Sr. (footballer) received no objections to it being posted. (Except one by mistake.) It took 12 hours of just sitting there from when it was declared ready before it was posted. All regular participants at ITN know that a famous American's death would be posted much more quickly. Surely we can do better. HiLo48 (talk) 04:37, 26 June 2020 (UTC)

  • Nah, this is fairly standard, I'm afraid.--WaltCip-(BLM!Resist The Orange One) 11:08, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
    Everyone's a volunteer, etc etc blah blah blah. Perhaps you need to notify ANI next time. The Rambling Man (Stay indoors, stay safe!!!!) 11:11, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
  • We don't have a paid ITN staff to monitor ITNC 24-7 and pounce on "ready" nominations. You could go and set up a table on your local street corner and recruit more people to participate in Wikipedia and nominate them to be admins so they can move quicker on non-American items. Whether something is American or not does not factor in my deciding to post something or not. My available time does more than anything, and I'm not usually awake when Australians are awake. 331dot (talk) 11:16, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
Twelve hours for a completely non-problematic item is a lot slower than pouncing, and not many Americans sleep that long. I'd be happy to take on Admin responsibilities to actually get such things moving, but I would be stunned if the Admin community accepted me. (But they will keep telling us all how there aren't enough of them.) HiLo48 (talk) 11:23, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
I was one of those in favor of decoupling the ITN updating responsibility from adminship, in an RFC that was held earlier. But the prevailing opinion was "if we can't trust you with the mop, how can we trust you with the Main Page?" So much for WP:NOBIGDEAL. Of course, I'd never pass an RFA on the grounds of "I just want to post items to ITN".--WaltCip-(BLM!Resist The Orange One) 12:31, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
It was posted less than 20 hours after nomination. That seems very reasonable to me. If anything I would have been concerned if it was posted more quickly, as editors in different time zones should be given the opportunity to comment. Modest Genius talk 11:36, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
All regular participants at ITN know that a famous American's death would be posted much more quickly. HiLo48 (talk) 12:06, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
A quick glance at the current ITN/C shows several Americans posted to RD in the last few days: Thomas Welder took 31 hours, Angela Madsen 17 hours and Vic Gilliam 39 hours. I don't see any evidence that we post Americans faster than Australians. Modest Genius talk 12:21, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
There are 26 million Australians, and almost 330 million Americans, meaning there are many more potential American editors than Australian editors. We can't do much about that. I also don't see evidence that people are saying "this is an American, better post it quick! We can take our time with this Australian over here." 331dot (talk) 12:36, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
HiLo48 you’ve consistently complained about pro American bias at ITN and I wish you’d tone it down a bit as there really isn’t any evidence for it. RDs often have to wait a little to get posted; the idea that “American admins” (how do you know everyone’s nationality anyway?) were ignoring it because the subject wasn’t American is just silly. P-K3 (talk) 12:40, 26 June 2020 (UTC)

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

Image change?[edit]

I wouldn't know where else to ask, but I think the image for the Hong Kong blurb should be changed. The current image isn't in the article, and an image of protests may be more relevant. I added some protests against the law decision in May, and someone else just added this photo from protests yesterday, which I think would be a good option. Thanks, Kingsif (talk) 12:44, 2 July 2020 (UTC)

@Kingsif: please see and follow up at Wikipedia:In_the_news/Candidates#(Posted)_Hong_Kong_National_Security_Law. — xaosflux Talk 13:52, 2 July 2020 (UTC)